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February 2010

People Are Just Good - II

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Still on the Kemo rum adventure, I came tearing out of the liquor store con Cap't and this happy little nana was standing there staring down at a small pile of ice and snow.  Bewildered at what to do.  The look of relief in her eyes at seeing me was transparent and with no hesitation - she said, "Grab my hand, girl, and help me cross this snow."  Yes Ma'am! 

Once she made way safely, clutching to my arm tight as a tick, she giggled like a wee child and almost rocked a curtsy.  I told her how beautiful and alive she looked out in the cold.  She was delighted/stunned at the compliment, threw me a cheery thank you, and carried on with her day. 

And, so did I.

This is the song I imagine she skipped away to, thinking that the day was shaping up just fine (click link below): 

Home



People Are Just Good.

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On the last trip to NJ for pick-ups on the TV show I'm still working on, we managed to score a limo for our 1.5 hr ride from JFK to NJ.  Sometimes the car company sends a jackety-ass rust bucket and sometimes a sleek limo pulls up.  It was almost embarrassing when we saw what we were to be traveling in.  Everyone stares as you climb in.  Thinks you're somebody. 

Our driver, a cool Egyptian cat named Kemo, was out to please.  I happened to mention rum and before I knew it, he had us spinning like mad thru Queens to a tiny liquor store so we could pick up a bottle.  Only the best for us.  After yelling at the stunned Indian man selling us the alcohol ("What?  Is there a plastic crisis?  Give us 2 cups!), we popped next door for a bag of ice, salty nuts, cold coca-colas and yet another Indian gentleman shake down from Kemo.  He was not to be trifled with when it came to us.

Once we were settled back in the limo, Kemo would break out hard intel on his homeland and then, outta nowhere (and mid-sentence), he'd slam up the bullet-proof divider to take a rapid-fire call, or smoke a smelly cigar.  The window would slip back down and he was back into telling us about the best fish in the world - located near his hometown in Alexandria, Egypt.  The way he let it roll off his tongue literally had me almost on a plane.  That's the kind of stuff I travel real far for.  Just a clean, honest take on fresh fish.  Simple as that.

As NYC passed by in the distance, Kemo explained to us in passionate detail about how we people in the USA have no civilization, how he's a scotch only man, how money talks and shit walks, sister.  Lisa was like, Awwww, hell...Kemo's making some calls, he's got a couple of live ones to take to the body farm.  I just kept the rum flowing, the ears open, and the pictures snapping. 

Kemo dropped us at our hotel and we immediately demanded he come up to the concierge lounge with us for a drink and more chit-chat.  Of course, he was in.  Sometimes, you don't have to leave the country to travel.  Which is why America is a beautiful homebase.  You have it all.  Kemo told us about his dream to open a funky bar, how we were the best/funnest customers he'd ever had, and about his big plan to start a tourist company that takes people on cruises down the Nile for a mere 10k.  Then he said America made him lonely, but since he met us he was happy.  I believe it.  Sometimes that's all it takes.

People are just good.  Do good.  Give good.  Be good.

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Seals Do Indeed Scream While Having Sex.

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Yup - when seals make love, the woman screams.  I watched on - fascinated at this tragic/epic undertaking on the way back from SF.  Once the two are done with the deed, the chick pulls a straight pass out - and I mean DOES NOT MOVE, and the dude - he scurries over to the ocean  for a quick rinse off.  

Just like normal people do I guess.  Gal - she lays there a bit traumatized, and the guys on to the next thing - fresh and clean as a daisy.  We are all one.

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What's More Interesting? Food or Scenery Pix?

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What's the better picture?  Food or scenery?  I love the waves crashing all mighty and wild.  But, I'm a one-shot Charlie on those shots.  Click.  Yup, got it.  What's next to eat?  Ice cream?  Fish 'n chips with tangy malt vinegar?  Steaming clam chowder with hundreds of oyster crackers sprinkled on top?  I can snap dozens of photos of food and it never loses its appeal.  Close up on the cracked pepper.  Get tight on the oyster cracker.  Just one tong of the fork.  I love macro.

I was so sick from shoving down food on the way down Highway 1, I did the only thing I could do.  I ended it all with a bag of Funyuns.  Could be the best thing I'd eaten all day.  All they hype (thanks yelp.com) on the rest of the food was just above average.  Funyuns however...those spun me for a loop.

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Tunes, Smelt, Prosecco & Magic

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Download 03 Living In the Unknown

There is magic everywhere when it comes to food.  In a chilly glass of Prosecco at mid-day.  In a wee mountain of smelt immersed in warm marinara.  In a vivid bowl of rich mushroom risotto.  In the smile of the passionate/about/all manager, Mario, over at Antica Pizza in MDR.  In a perfect-to-the-core Neapolitan margherita pizza.

It's truly wacky where the day can take you.  You wake up thinking what-to-do-what-to-do...I finally have a free minute.  A day of nothing.  The weather is sick.  The phone is off.  The next 24 hours is anything you wanna make it.  Craft a pitch?  Read a book?  Eat at a new joint?  Peruse the paper?  Walk the beach spine?  Any of it.  All of it.  Listen to soothing tunes.  Conjure up dreamy lands.  Just try to tune up the system, one breath at a time.  One sip at a time.  One bite at a time.  One nap at a time.

And, remember.  You make your own choices.  This is the life you've carved out, one situation after another.  Does it work anymore?  I think it does.  Better to figure out a way to tell one story at a time.  That's the new deal.  Tell one small, yet powerful story at a time.  Next to impossible.  Why?  Cause the brain is like the internet - a full search engine ON at all times.  If there we're a way to simply shuffle things.  To build flow charts, call sheets, colorful grids...all in the head.  I'm lousy with notebooks - small, large, lined, graphed.  I have about a mil going at once and even those have become crushing to the true intel.  I can't seem to find jack shit. 

Yet somehow, one cold glass at a time, things get done.  They morph and actualize into things that matter.  At least to me. 

And, why not kick in some good tunes for these entries?  You might find some magic in them.

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San Fran - A City Quickly Remembered.

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People save their entire lives to rock certain trips.  Coastal cruise up the 1, for instance.  But, when you reside in Cali - well, these trips are as easy as hopping in the truck and hittin' the road.  The destination was San Francisco, a place I've always said I'd call home if I wanted to live the city life.  

Funny how one persons SF can be so different that my San Fran.  To me, it's meandering sailboats, the incredibly fresh sushi and sake at Atami (my forever perfect sushi joint), mist rising from crab pots and containers of giant crabs, mimosas at Zazie (along with shotgunning a spicy bloody mary at the chill bar next door), and brave/ass machiato's from Cafe Francisco.  That's all I really need from the city to be satisfied.

It was a quickie trip and more impressive than the clean little city itself was the 14 hour ride back to LA.  So much like Baja it hurts.  Did all the things you're supposed to do on excursions like these - chowed on fish 'n chips (Rated Top 5 in the country by Coastal Living), wolfed down a bowl of creamy clam chowder, munched on somehow-warm ice cream, saw the hilarious seals lining the beach near Hearst Castle (ever seen seals make love?)...and just looped and rolled all the way down the painfully beautiful coast. 

Now I've done it.  Next up has to be Catalina.

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