Tuesday, December 6, 2011

LA Stories- The Flood

The entire city of LA is flooded today, and I am no exception. However, unlike the torrents of piss, needles and bottle shards frothing merrily along Hollywood Boulevard, I am flooded with love.
I guess a blue moon accompanied these rains, because for the first time in what feels like a year, I slept trough the entire night without jerking awake with my heart racing.

I have a friend with a very calming influence crashing on our futon, and I guess the additional presence allowed my subconscious to relax a little with Jay being gone again. Paul's a good guy- the kind you feel safe around while the Outside Monsters lurk beyond the barred windows.
I slept the whole night through with Jack sleeping above my head and Johnny at my feet. Sure, they're syphoning my body heat, but I syphoned theirs right back in some sort of bizarre circuit of fur and dreams.
My friend had left early, but I slept until 11 (!!!) and got up and made a cup of tea. This simple act already meant that this morning ranked up amongst the best I've had in LA.

I then checked FaceBook, and got a really sweet message from another writer, complimenting my blogs. Matt Martins- an unbelievably prolific guy with a genuine gift. If I wrote a fraction of the amount Matt does... well. Anyway, I admire him tremendously, and sipping tea while having my ego stroked felt fantastic.

I also had messages from Erika and Bryan, who let me know that they missed me and were thinking about me. I always feel loved when I hear from my friends, but usually the sensation is accompanied by a pang of loss. I did not ache this time- probably because I know I'll see them soon.
It was then time to head to the post office. Ordinarily, this doesn't fill me with joy, but today, it filled my arms, my backseat, and my living room. With Joy: the sendable kind- if it fits, it ships, and apparently quite a lot fits.

Jay's Mom and Dad sent us box after box of goodies, and I happily hauled them to my car in the pouring rain. I think some of them have food inside! I also had a package from Jackie and Lizzie, which I was eagerly looking forward to opening when I got home.

After that, a friend I'd done a job for called to tell me he could pay me, so I drove to North Hollywood, where he was disassembling furniture. Since my cup was brimming with good karma, part of me wanted to go home and nap, but all the good vibes from the day had given me enough energy to not make a selfish choice. I helped with the furniture, then gave him a much-needed ride to run an errand. Then I took him out to lunch. Then I severely undercharged him for my portion of the paycheck. He deserves all this and more, because he's a wonderful friend and I'd been hoping for a chance to do something nice for him. As we chewed on chicken during a rainy lunch, it tasted really good. Because doing the right thing always does.

Eventually, Los Angeles traffic ferried me back to Hollywood, where I ran errands of my own and went to Target. I tried on clothes and everything fit. I liked the way my body looked in the yellowing lights of the gum-encrusted dressing rooms. I didn't buy anything I tried on, but being happy with my body for a change is still a novelty, and for a narcissistic moment I let it happen and didn't berate my thighs or my veins. I looked at myself in the mirror in observation instead of criticism. And it was nice.
Plus I found really cute socks.

I navigated the streets home and found a rock-star parking spot, naturally. And why shouldn't I? It's an awesome kind of day! Waiting for me on my doorstep was a box of Harry and David's gourmet snacks- another gift from Jay's parents, who have by now completely spoiled me rotten. They feel slightly guilty for flying Jay home for the week, and as a sort of hostage-negotiation, have sent me food. Consider me appeased. I ate a designer pear and some truffles and stretched out on the couch before making a second trip out to the car.
The rain had let up, but the Street Monsters weren't out yet, so I made it there and back without encountering a single crackhead. Success!
This trip meant I'd scored Jackie and Lizzie's package, which was a belated birthday gift. Inside the box, I found toys, bracelets, an obscene picture book, a card, FOOD (!!!) and several brightly colored tinsel balls on a string, tied to a stick. The card explained that this was meant for the cats, and not me.

I called Jackie to thank her and her sweet fiance, and played with Johnny Danger, who had instantly gone into a frenzy of ecstasy when he discovered the toy.

I chatted with her on her drive home, and then lazed on the couch while writing this.
The song goes, "it never rains in sunny California, but it pours, man, it pours."
Totally accurate- but today I was showered with the most wonderful of everything, and I am so grateful.

Today gets a 10 out of 10.

LA Stories- Lacies

It is a well-documented and scientific fact that wearing matching bra and panty sets makes women feel better. Adding makeup, tight jeans and a shirt without a cartoon print (or spaghetti stains and holes, in my case) is a surefire recipe for an instant mood lift.
This was the case when I decided to leave my house for a solo trip to the grocery store. Since Saturday night parking spots are the Holy Grail in Hollywood, I did not give up my coveted spot next to the local pile of mysterious hooker-torso-shaped oozing trash bags, and elected to walk.
This required full body and facial armor.

It's LA, trick.

I donned my usual grubby shirt and hoodie, then thought better and decided to go with biological camouflage rather than armor. I put on makeup, then changed out of my clothes and into:

(dramatic sexy chord)
Lacy panties and bra, to be exact. White. They're hella cute.

As I walked Hollywood Blvd to get to Trader Joe's, our grocery store, I noticed people looking at me. The biological camo was working- instead of INvisible, I was highly visible. And a high-profile target is sometimes too much pressure. My ploy worked, and aside from a couple of guys making complimentary mutterings, I passed the gauntlet unscathed.

At the grocery store, my confidence had peaked. Out of the corner of my eye, I could see that the jeans were working their magic. The fact that I've lost 20 lbs was working for me. Hell, even one of the bums had said I was a fine mumblemuttermumble, so it must be true.
Somewhere along the frozen food aisle, right next to the tilapia fillets, I saw two Trader Joe's employees approaching. They were smiling. Why shouldn't they? I was looking hot.

"Lacies," one said, grinning at the other.
"Definitely lacies," agreed his friend.

I was stunned. How did they know??? Of all the guesses... I flushed appropriately, waited for them to pass, then felt the small of my back- nope- no whale tail hanging out... How could they have been so accurate?

Flummoxed and slightly indignant, I gathered my composure while pretending to look at trout, then decided I had to know.
I had a RIGHT to know, dammit. How could two grocery store employees see, with Superhuman accuracy, the source of my power. I felt naked, exposed- and indignant. I marched back to the beef section, where one of the perpetrators was slicing meat.

"Excuse me, but I couldn't help overhearing your conversation back there."
"Oh, really?" He asks.
Busted. I have him now. I summon my courage, ready to lord it over him.
"Yeah. So, what's so lacy?"
He stammers. "Ummm."
"You were commenting about lacies, so I wanted to know," I say, pretending to innocently shrug my shoulders.
"Oh!" He says, brightening. "Come here, I'll show you."

Now I'm the one confused.

He takes me to the next aisle over and hands me a container of cookies.
"We're almost out of Lacie's Cookies- they're the best, but we have to keep restocking them.


Oh god.

Oh Jesus.

"So they're that good, hunh?" I manage, lamely.
"Oh yeah. You gotta try them. Lacie's are the best."

...$3.99 plus tax later, I'm home safe in my dangerous confidence-boosting underwear and bra and jeans, but I definitely left my pride in the snack aisle.

At least I have cookies to console me.

LA Stories- Why My Ear Smells Like Cat Food

It's been a rough year and a half- anyone following these can attest that the fates have not been kind to me since I moved out... Or have they?

Since I arrived, I've been able to spot myself on the big silver screen, I've PA'd a porn movie, I've PA'd two horror movies, I worked for Gale Anne Hurd, I've worked for Jerry Bruckheimer, I hung out in Scary Spice's kitchen, and I shook hands with Rob Zombie. (Then later saw him again while playing his wife, Sherri Moon, at Halloween Horror Nights.)
I've been a professional stilt walker, a personal assistant, I've picked up dog shit for someone else and I've delivered $20,000 worth of film. People have trusted me with theircars, their friendship, their pin codes, their laundry, the keys to their homes and their pharmaceutical lives.

I have been blessed to reconnect with old friends from Orlando and blessed to make new friends here. I've worked in a haunted hospital, a porn factory, CSI Miami's crime lab, and the WB lot. I got to hang out at Malibu, Venice Beach, the Hollywood sign, Crenshaw, Griffith Park, and Runyon Canyon. I've eaten at the best restaurants and had the rope dropped for me by my friends at the best nightclubs.

Right now, I'm sitting at a desk as an Executive Assistant to a Creative Development Exec at New Line Cinema, which is the same company that cranked out all my favorite Jason movies. God I love New Line, and I wish I could stay, but sadly, more layoffs are coming and I'm only a temp for the month. After this, I'm not sure what's around the corner.

But here's what's happened recently:

Jay and I decided a "break" was in order since our priorities had changed: He prefers to work a 20 hour day, party for 3, sleep for 1, and then go do it again the next morning. I, on the other hand, had taken to staying in bed and crying on my days off, which was getting to be a bit of a downer. Since we are both social creatures, I loathed being alone while in between jobs, and wasn't able to reconcile my desire to have a domestic married life with his industry lifestyle. He got tired of my self-destructive behavior and made a stand to force me to begin to take care of myself, and has made it clear that he cannot support me anymore, financially or emotionally. So we separated for real, living apart and not seeing each other, which I hate. He is living in Pasadena, with friends, and I am living in Glendale, with friends. After a few months, on a set date, we will reunite and see if we're going to be compatible any more. I get off on being taken care of, and Jay wants an independent partner. Some mutual adjusting is in order if it's going to work. At this point, I feel thrown away and angry and sad, so I am not able to make a lot of personal progress with self-healing, but I have high hopes for the future. I've made some good friends with some good people out here, and they are buoying my spirits in the mean time as I heal and figure stuff out. And as always, my heroes back home are keeping me smiling through the pain. Long distance love is still very powerful, and it means the world to me to have my friends by my side, 3,000 miles away.

If I can maintain a job here, I will stay as long as I can to ride out the separation until Jay makes up his mind. If I can't keep a job, my financial situation means I have to go home, so my brother will fly out and we will roadtrip it east with two angry cats in the backseat. I will return home, spouseless, jobless, live with my mom and try not to feel like a failure. That's the plan, anyway.

Now that you're caught up, here is why my ear smells like cat food:
I had to move a lot of stuff. Jay packed as best he could, but time was limited by his work (among other things), so when he left, our apartment was a chaotic mess. At the time, I had a virus, a fever, a yeast infection, pinkeye, and was balled up on the kitchen floor crying, so I was not much help on moving day. Who can pack when they're that sexy? After I found myself alone, I had to sift through the rubble and pack the remainder of our mutual and personal belongings, which I did not do in a timely manner. I had better things to do. Like not pack, and lay in bed and cry. Important stuff. Fortunately, my friends here and this temp job came along and motivated me. A fire was lit under me, and I have a reason to be productive and active.

As the 1st (today, my last day in the apartment) approached, I packed what I could, but physical exhaustion and my new work schedule made progress slow. I'd also grossly underestimated how much work was left, and how much would (not) fit in my rented 10-ft. U-Haul truck. On the day of the move, Carlos, my best friend from Orlando, his girlfriend Shaunelle (whom I adore,) my best friend from LA Paul, and a brand new very generous friend named Lucas showed up and loaded the truck. Carlos is ex-military, and Paul is a Theatrical show loader, so between the 5 of us it was packed to capacity within no time. Carlos drove the truck to Pasadena, where we unloaded it into Jay's storage unit. I took a carload to Glendale and unloaded and tried to make some order from the swirling entropy of my life. I had to leave our cats in Hollywood that night because the town was on lockdown due to the Oscars. No one gets in or out on Oscar Night. Unless of course you're important.
That was Sunday.
On Monday, I bought more tape from Target and came home to find Paul (the Theatrical loader) on my doorstep. He'd just gotten out of an audition nearby and realized I might need a little more help. "No, no, I'm fine, I got it," I said, but he offered to come help me dismantle the hooks in the walls and our window coverings. I figured he could help with that since he's tall and I'd pack the kitchen. Piece of cake, right?
Wrong. It took another 3 hours to load everything in both our cars. At this point I'm just shoving bleach in with my alarm clock, and cat stuff in with my phone charger. I have had about 8 hours of sleep over the last few days and I was deliriously tired. Paul refused to go until everything was ready, then loaded half the load in his car (FULL) and half in mine (FULL). He missed his gym time (which is why he can actually lift the boxes my stupid T-Rex arms couldn't) and an engagement party for me, but he came through in a way that mackerel-smacked me with its generosity and selflessness.
This is the same guy who crashed on my couch so I wouldn't be scared/stabbed/sleepwalk while Jay was home visiting Florida. Paul has shown me more kindness in 4 months than all of LA has in a year and a half.
(I took him to the airport once, so we're totally even.)

He drove behind me 11 miles, and at long last, we arrived at the storage unit Jay chose, conveniently near his new place in Pasadena. Inconveniently, they do not allow 24-hour access to one's belongings, so, feeling like the biggest a-hole on the planet, I let Paul drive to the trickle-down remainder of his party with a car FULL of my life. I drove to Glendale, schlepped my carfull upstairs to my new bedroom, drove to Hollywood, gathered my angry, frightened cats and brought them to their temporary new home. By then it was midnight. I collapsed into bed.

Seven hours later, I got up for work, stumbled around boxes and bags full of storage unit goodies, and got dressed. It's cold where I am, and I have to keep the door open because my room is too small to fit a litterbox inside. The cats need access to a microscopic pointless balcony, which I have barricaded off like Les Miserable so they won't leap for freedom. Frozen, I found my phone, and, in case anyone called, got my bluetooth, which is required by the state of CA while driving and talking on a phone. The bluetooth, thrown into the "Gotta Have In Glendale" box, had rattled around. So had my container of dry cat food, also necessary in Glendale. The bluetooth was buried in catfood. I fished it out like a disgusting crackerjack prize, and debated on how best to clean it.
Answer: There is no good way to clean cat food off a hands-free cell phone piece when you have no cleaning supplies.

The best I could do was kleenex and prayers. As I got in my car on my way to work, I tried it out, and, much to my chagrin, I could still smell Friskies long after my phone call. My ear absorbed the scent, and when you're stuck in rush-hour traffic, ears are harder to clean than small electronics. It will probably smell like cat food for a long, long time.

LA Stories- One Night With Paris

I got the phone call from my friend Todd, asking if I was available to work a stilt gig at a club in Hollywood that night. It paid $150, 9 to 2AM, was I interested, etc. Even though I'm nursing a sprained foot, he'd technically had me at "paid," so I flew home to begin assembling costume pieces for the night. They wanted sexy and slutty, which happens to be the exact description of the only stock costume I have...
Todd gave me directions to look for "Donny" when I got to the club, but my phone kept cutting out during our conversation.
"Donny's a little (static,) Todd kept trying to say. "A little (statttttiiccccc!)"
"A little WHAT," I asked, wondering what Donny could be. A little neurotic? A little flirty? A little bit of a stickler for rules?
"Donny's a LITTLE PERSON!" Todd finally manages to shout into my earpeice.
Cue the Black Eyed Peas song: Tonight's gonna be a good good ni-i-ight!
After parking in the garage on Hollywood Blvd., I arrived at the historic, posh Roosevelt Hotel carrying my stilts in my arms. They immediately point me to the club downstairs. I walked inside, expecting to find Donny, and instead I am greeted by not one, not two, but FIVE Little People!
I introduced myself, hands were shaken all around, and then one of them volunteered to take me backstage to meet Donny.
My heart did a flip- there's MORE LITTLE PEOPLE!!!
I don't know why seeing them made me so happy, but let me share this visual with you: a group of Little People chilling in an empty nightclub is good. A LARGE group of Little People chilling in an empty nightclub is better!
I met Donny, who was as sweet as can be, and helped me find the tiny (no pun intended) dressing room, where I put on my wig, knee pads, stilt covers, and the rest of my costume.
"Oh, don't set anything down on that bag," Donny warned me. "It's full of birds."
Ohkayyyyy sure...
The floor was filled with balloons at this point, and it was getting really cramped backstage as all the little people were getting dressed in Oompa Loompa costumes. There was even a tiny Oompa-Loompa version of "The Situation" practicing his fistpump in the mirror- it was great. I'm pretty sure at some point he hit on me, which made me smile for all the right reasons.
I was ready to strap up and put on my stilts at that point, so I stretched them out from 3-feet to 5-feet, and then realized with horror: I WAS MISSING A WINGNUT.

You really, really need all four wingnuts for stilts- they literally keep the bottom from falling out while you're walking, so your stilts don't trip you up or collapse under you. A small heart attack began ramping up in my heart- here I'd just met this wonderful family of midget entertainers, and they were about to hate me. Or think I was stupid. Or possibly both.
After explaining to Donny that I had to retrace my steps and search for the nut, (which, to his everlasting credit, did not freak out about) I ran out on Hollywood Blvd. to see if it had fallen out between the hotel and my car while I was carrying my stilts. I usually keep them in a bag, but I was in such a rush I'd just toted them straight from my trunk.

I was, at this point, wearing:
Ugg-style brown floppy house slipper-boots, fishnet stockings, a garter, a garter belt, a leopard print bathrobe, a lumpy unbrushed wig, kneepads, and big plushy white velour stilt covers which I had to hold up with my hands to keep them from dragging on the ground as I lurched down the sidewalk, scanning the pavement for my missing nut.
It's Hollywood on a Saturday night, and people were still staring at me- I will never again judge the whackos and their outfits I see on the streets- I have run a mile in their shoes and it's stressful.

To make matters worse, I couldn't find my wingnut on the street, or in my trunk. I went back, about to disappoint everyone and let down my friend who recommended me and burn bridges, when I gave my suitcase a random search. Magically, it appeared- it had fallen off in an open flap. Hallelujah praise the midget baby Jesus!
Scrambling, I threw on the rest of my costume and strapped up, and my friend Luckey ushered me out to the club, which had opened its doors moments before. She lead me through a pitch black stage and opened some red velvet curtains. As my eyes adjusted to the dim club light, from the stage, I see:
A hot chick in a sexy referee costume dancing.
A hot chick in a sexy maid outfit dancing.
A hot chick in a sexy nurse outfit dancing.
A person in a giant Panda Bear mascot costume dancing next to the nurse.
A guy in a hot-pink ape costume dancing his ass off.
A man in a chicken suit, dancing.
A man in a tuxedo with fingerless gloves and a ventriloquism dummy, sitting and chatting with a big guy in a tux.
...As I'm taking all this in, the man with the dummy stands up from where he's sitting and approaches me.
"Hi," I'm David, he says, shaking my hand.
"I'm Jaime- nice to meet you!" I say, still adjusting to the bizarre new environment.
Meanwhile, the DJ is blaring "Jesse's Girl," and "Hungry Like The Wolf," while we dance and dance in an otherwise empty club. Sur-fucking-real.
On both sides of the room, birthday parties are set up- one in a giant velvet booth and the other in a massive wrought-iron birdcage. I can see a harness of some sort... At this point I just sort of zone out and keep dancing, trying to ignore the searing pain flaring up in my sprained foot. Soon enough, the patrons began to trickle in.
I kept noticing the Stage Manager as she ran around, socializing and preparing everything on the stage for the variety acts which were to follow. She was very friendly and smiled at me several times. I guess I was staring at her a little because she was KELLY OSBOURNE. Random night job, I suppose, but she was very nice.
Slowly at first, then with a surge of importance, really expensively dressed people filled the club. And then it happened:
Somebody ordered a bottle.
The lights flickered and flashed- spotlights focused on the corner of the room, where a neon sign proudly displayed the words "World's Only Midget Bar."
The DJ stopped the music, played a brief intro, then announced it: "LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, GIVE IT UP FOR THE WORLD'S ONLY... FLYING MIDGET BARRRRTENDERRRR!!!!"
To the song "Thus Spake Zarathustra," Steve, a Little Person dressed as an Oompa Loompa with a battery operated light-up harness and pants suit, was hoisted aloft and flown on a motorized track over the throng of partiers, until he arrived at the table which ordered a bottle. He is lowered to ground level, at which point he proudly delivers the vodka, or whatever they ordered, then once again raise back to the ceiling to swim gracefully through the air back to his spot at the bar. Steve repeated this process about a dozen times that night. It is his actual job, he is adorable, and he probably makes more money than I'll ever see in my lifetime.
At this point, it's time to start the burlesque shows which run every half hour, and are filled with variety acts. My new friend David begins to emcee the show, but first he is introduced:
Ohhhh. So THAT's why he looked familiar...
David emcees throughout the night, as the burlesque shows come and go. There is a burlesque magician, some amazing pop singers, some "Beacher's Babies" who dance up a storm, and a girl who performed a lapdance for the birthday boy, then did something juuust off stage in a bathtub which involved squirting a large quantity of what I can only pray was water. If you've been reading these blogs, you know why I was afraid.
A magician from Australia took the stage and began to produce pigeon after pigeon from a deck of cards. (These were the ones I'd been warned about.) He then tied a gray scarf to a black scarf, balled it up and produced a fat grey cat. My jaw dropped a little on that one.
The next act was also Australian- a handsome fellow I'd seen wandering around backstage in a towel earlier.
"So what's your act," I ask. "You just wear a towel provocatively?"
He laughed and answered in an adorable accent, "No, I'm the Shaving Cream Guy."
...The what?
The Shaving Cream Guy was onstage next- he proceeded to pour out an entire can of shaving cream into his palms, which he then used to coat his entire head and chest in white foam. Using no mirror and just his hands, he sculpted and contorted his face into the images of an old man, a monkey, a laughing skeleton, and a Faustian Devil, complete with horns. He was also jaw-droppingly amazing.
At one point, my friend Luckey came out in street clothes and a Bart Simpson rubber head. She's a professional dancer, and tore it up. We were also joined by a second panda (a smaller one) and an extremely overweight girl in jungle-print lingerie.
By this point, I'd seen so many titties with tassels, I didn't think the night could get any more provocative. Until the onstage pillowfight began, complete with feather cannon.
Luckey changed from her Bart costume to some sort of Pokemon character, complete with a tail and 8 hands flopping around as she whirled across the crowd.
Later, the girls came out wearing pretty much only the balloons I'd been tripping over backstage, and ran through the audience popping them one by one.
I was overstimulated, under-hydrated and beyond exhausted at this point- I'd had one 5-minute break, during which I stayed up on my stilts, but I didn't want to leave the club for a moment in case I missed something awesome.
That's when Paris Hilton stopped by to hang out and watch another round of burlesque variety acts. She stood right next to me, and I stared at her earrings and wondered how much steak I could buy with just one...
Just as suddenly as it began, the night ended- people started to filter out, and the club was sparse. The hot chicks were gone, the pandas were gone, it was just me and that weird thing with 8 hands and a tail, which brought me some Vos water.
If you don't know what Vos water is, it's because you're in a normal tax bracket- sadly, I couldn't even enjoy it because I was so busy gulping it down. I staggered backstage, where, as I unstrapped myself from my stilts, I noticed one of the Little People was wearing an ankle bracelet. Not the fun kind, but the Lindsay Lohan kind. Just speculating about how that got there filled my mind with tiny criminal possibilities...
All too soon, the night was over and I drove home, deliriously tired.
My cats greeted me at the door, and, avoiding tripping over them in the darkness, I stepped in a pile of cat barf.
In the shower at 4 in the morning, I contemplated my life.
As the barf, glitter and sweat washed down the drain, I thought:
Not too shabby.

LA Stories- Wizzards vs. Warriors

It all started with a feather... A blue feather, chosen by my friend Mandy, placed in my hair alongside my blue streak and secured with a plastic bead. "There," she said, admiring her handiwork in the mirror of the salon where she styles hair. "That seems right."
I'd gone to visit Mandy and to support her salon's art show, which was displaying some art she and her fiance Dani had created. I brought my friend Kyle with me, and, although he declined a feather, we enjoyed an impromptu rock concert and some wine- a fun outing with fun people.
The next day was my friend Elissa's birthday, and she'd invited everyone to join her in some karaoke in Culver City... I HATE karaoke, but I love Elissa. She was one of the first friends I made when I came to LA, and has been a social staple in my life ever since. So I had to go and endure some Empty Orchestra. Ugh.
There was a two drink minimum, but I more than met it by engaging in a drinking contest with my friend Erik, who happens to be Kyle's roommate. Not feeling buzzed at all, I matched Erik drink for drink, baffling him with my abnormally awesome liver. That night, more and more friends showed up- Kyle, John, Zach, Annalisa, Chelsea, Melissa, Sean... all these familiar faces I've been working and playing with over the last year. A mismatched group of Lost Boys. Fighting for survival, bonded through sweat, blood and tears, I was looking at my LA Family. I sat back with the last of Erik's challenge swirling through my system and gazed at my friends as they danced. The same powerful sensation of love and bonding I'd felt with my Band, with my Karate Family, with my Universal Family- here it was again, surging through my veins alongside rum and godknows whatelse. We are a tribe. I had a feather in my hair. I am a fighter. I am a Warrior.
All of the battles of the last 6 months had been registering in my body, leaving heavy scars on my psyche. I suddenly felt free and liberated. My handsome Dark Haired Boy asked me to dance, so, leaving my cares on the sticky barroom table, I joined my people and danced and sang alongside my fellow Warriors. The night belonged to us.
I left the feather in my hair to remind myself of my new outlook. I've been suffering for long enough- I'm tired of feeling like a victim- I need to remember that I am strong, I am a fighter, and I can survive.
I kept this attitude when my roommate, Jon, informed me that even though I'd only been living with him and his girlfriend for 2 months, he was in a bad financial state and needed to raise the rent. By $100 a month. Being a badass Warrior, I no longer take shit from anyone, so I told him I'd be moving out. Jon is in a Metal bad called "White Wizzard." They don't suck, but (did I mention they're a Metal band so) they aren't that sucessful, and financial hardships and rockiness within the band were making Jon grumpier and grumpier. I don't need that in my life- I'm a fucking Warrior. Warriors don't take shit from Wizzards.
Over the next few days, things got tense between Jon and his live-in girlfriend, Jane. (not her real name.) Jane is from Thailand, and although there is an occasional language barrier, we both speak Empathy, and had been growing closer as friends. As we spend time together at the gym, or swimming in the pool, she began to confide in me. Things about Jon. Things like, how he told her that "if he ever found out that she'd been sent by the cops to spy on him, he'd have her killed." Things like how he calls her names. Things like how she is forbidden to ask him where he's been, when he's coming home, or who he's been spending his nights with. I'd heard him speaking to her, and telling her how "fucking stupid" she was. I hated how he'd wax philosophically about the beauty of open relationships, but insisted she not see other men. He'd cut her off entirely from all of her friends, and she no longer had a social life because Jon did not allow her to go out.
This came to a head two days after Elissa's birthday, when Jon sent me a text stating that he was intending to have a "mellow night at home," that he'd had a death in his family, and that Jane was spending the night elsewhere and he needed some down time to be with some friends, so could I not have any guests over that night. "Sure," I wrote back. "Understood- I'm sorry you're sad."
I stopped by the apartment to grab a few things, intending to spend the night with my Dark Haired Boy, when I saw Jane, also packing. Jon was not around. I asked where she was headed, since it wasn't like her to spend nights out of the apartment.
"Jon has asked me to sleep in the van tonight."
"What! Why?"
"He say he needs to be with his sister. But he has no sister..."
"Jane, this is stupid- come stay with me tonight- I don't like the idea of you sleeping out in the open streets. It's not safe."
Jane whispers now, looking at the floor. "I think he cheat on me..."
She insisted on following Jon's orders, because he had to meet up with her for some reason that night. She waited in the van all night, and he never arrived. However, when she got back to the apartment the next day, she found Jon passed out in bed next to a bottle of pink tequilla and a bottle of body oil. He'd had sex in their bed, and left the sheets messy.
Taking advantage of his unconscious state, she grabbed his cell phone and began to look through the texts. She found plenty of evidence that he was cheating on her.
She told me this through a storm of tears that afternoon.
"I hate him! He take everything from me, he threaten me, he say he's going to smack me if I ask any question, then he cheat on me in this bed! I want to leave him!"
Being a Warrior, I feel protective of Jane. This man has no right to threaten to hurt her.
"Whatever you need," I said. "I will help you."
Jane looks at me with determination in her eyes.
"I want to fuck him," she said, in perfect English. "On rent. I want to fuck him on rent. I want to leave right away so he is fucked."
"Okay," I said. "Let's make a plan and be smart about this... If you want to move out when I move out, I will help you move. But Jane, if he's threatening to hurt you, I think you should get out sooner. He doesn't love you- no one who loves you would talk to you that way..."
She hugged me around my neck, and promised to figure out a plan to leave.
I talked with a bunch of people about the situation that day, and got some good advice. I also called Jay, just because I missed him and I wanted to talk, but he was not particularly helpful. "You shouldn'tve moved in with them," he said.
"It's not like I had a lot of time to hunt and look- you LEFT me, so this means I am victime to CraigsList."
"That's not my problem," he told me.
Awesome, cool, thanks Jay.
That night, Jon was still out, but I sensed trouble on the morning's horizon. I had such a powerful feeling that something bad would happen, I slept in my clothes and left a lamp on in my bedroom.
Sure enough, at 5:20AM, I awoke to the sounds of them arguing loudly. Then Jane started screaming my name, yelling "Jaime come help me!"
I bolted out of my room to find them squared off in the kitchen, her back to the wall.
"He choke me!" Jane said.
"Grab your bag, we're leaving."
Ah, but Jon the Wizzard was angry now, in full Metal mode.
"Oh so now you're waking up our roommate with this bullshit- you pushed me to the limit, so you can get the fuck out!"
Jane screamed back at him "You cheat on me!"
"OK," I said. "Probably time to get that bag now."
I wedged myself physically between them and stayed there like a wrestling Ref.
Jon was furious. "Where the fuck do you think you're going?"
"I'm not getting in the middle of this, I'm just taking her somewhere so you two can cool off."
Jane finally grabbed her purse, and we took off. She was hysterical, crying. "He choke and scratch me!"
She was adamant that we NOT call the cops because then she would be deported.
"That's not how that works," I said. "They don't care about whether or not you're a citizen, they care about whether or not your boyfriend attacked you."
We arrived at Paul's (the Dark Haired Boy) house at 5:30, and texted him out of bed. I'd kept him in the loop, so he wasn't completely shocked to see us at his door. Jane had scratch marks on her back from the Wizzard's guitar fingernails, and was pretty much in shock. I took pictures of her scratches and we convinced her to let us call the cops.
They arrived in true LAPD fashion- an hour later.
They, too, took photos of Jane's scratches and reassured her that they didn't care where she was from, they were just there to get the bad guy. By now Jane was calmed down and able to talk with them about all the awful things Jon had said to her. They listened, sympathetically, then left to go arrest him. Sadly, by the time they arrived at the Wizard's, he'd already gone.
This wasn't surprising as the man already has an arrest record and is behind on his child support payments.
...did I mention he's a pretty awful human being?
I was meeting my huge awesome friend Carlos that afternoon to carpool, but he couldn't get there until 11. That meant Jane and I had to kill a few hours and get as much stuff packed as possible during that time. I knew Jay lived just down the street from us, also in North Hollywood, so I sent him a text:
"I know it's early but LAPD just left and I'm scared- can you please come over?"
He groggily phoned me back after my 4th call, and told me that it wasn't his job to take care of me anymore and that I should wait in Panera Bread.
Thanks, Jay. Thanks for showing me your true colors- now I can focus on the people who actually give a shit about someone other than themselves, like pretty much every other friend named in this story.
Jane and I spent that night at the Paul's, and came back the following evening to an empty apartment. Paul stayed there, with us, just in case.
Jane and I decided to act normally around Jon (if he came home) for 2 more days until I could help Jane drive her personal belongings to her new place where she'd be living with the one friend she had left. She had about 2 cars worth of stuff, so we'd caravan her out before the Wizzard knew she was gone. We were going to be quick- we were going to be smooth. It was going to be easy, and then he'd be unable to take any agression out on me, because I am his size physically, and he clearly prefers to pick on smaller girls without citizenships.
Thursday arrived, and I rounded some troops to help extract Jane. I was counting on the Wizzard staying gone, but we couldn't be sure, so I put out a request on FaceBook for some fellow Warriors to act as Guardian Angels. My prayer was answered in the forms of Joop, an old friend from Oyster's Secret in Orlando, and Kyle, a new friend from Halloween Horror Nights in LA. We held a pow-wow at a newarby coffee bean and tea leaf and discussed the plan while we waited for Jane. She arrived, dishevelled.
"He's home," she said, then started to cry. "He make me have sex with him- I feel disgusted."
She began to have second thoughts about whether or not she should move out, but ultimately decided to move forward with the Plan. We were behind her 100%.
"If he hurt you once, he'll do it again." She agreed.
As soon as she started packing, the Wizzard freaked out and began to yell at her. He bellowed over her shoulders as she began to stuff things into boxes and bags. I signalled to the boys to not leave her side while I went into her closet and began packing her things. Joop and Kyle stood like stanch soldiers in the living room while the fighting escalated. The Wizzard kicked over the kitchen table, flinging hot coffee everywhere, as he ordered Joop and Kyle to get the fuck out of his house. He took an exceptional shine to Kyle, who he insisted was somehow smirking at him.
Kyle may have been, but he also just kind of LOOKS like a smirker, so, what can you do?
To calm things down, I suggested Kyle and Joop wait outside, and we'd keep the door open.
The Wizzard slammed the door shut, and continued screaming at Jane, who by this point was so stressed out she began to vomit.
While she was retching in the bathroom, the Wizzard turned on me, telling me that I was a lying sack of shit for stating that I didn't want to get in the middle of things, and that he wanted me out as well.
Noooo problem.
We loaded everything into my car and Jane's car, but I had a horrible feeling that the Wizzard would do something evil to my cats if I left him alone in the apartment. I have no bedroom door, only a curtain flap, and even if all he did was let them outside, I'd be devastated. I sent out a text to Todd, Paul, and Carlos, all of whom responded instantly. They were on their way. Todd arrived within minutes, and the Wizzard immediately picked a fight with him. This would've been awesome, as any one of my Warriors could kick the Wizzard's ass, but Todd just smirked, which I knew was the best reaction.

I sent Joop to drive my car to Jane's new place, and I sent Kyle home. Todd waited with me until Carlos and Paul arrived. Once they got there, it was obvious.
"You need to get out. Tonight."
Carlos called his girlfriend (and my friend) Shaunelle, and between the four of us, The cats were moved to Todd's, and I was packed and moved out of the Wizzard's and into Paul's within 4 hours. Surprise!
Victory: Warriors.
The next day, I went back for my bed and some shelves (the only items left) with my friend Gabrielle, and her friend Emily. And their boyfriends Nick and Matthew, who are, respectively, Marines and humongous.
The Wizzard literally gnashed his teeth when I arrived with such giant Warriors. He said not a single word to me as we packed, but proceeded to write me a nasty email, which I read over his shoulder as we moved out.
I'll be happy to post the letter online, because it's funny, but it's mostly blaming me for his problems with Jane because I introduced her into my circle of numerous guy friends, who encouraged her to act on her irrational fears. He also stated that I would not be receiving my security deposit back until he found a new roommate to replace me.
This may mean small claims court for me, but I'm OK with that. I can continue fighting, because I am a Warrior. Oh, and there's that little matter about a police report filed against him that he doesn't know about yet- that'll be a fun surprise to break to him!
In the meantime, I'm safe and loved, here with my Dark Haired Boy and my group of Big Hard Fucking Heroes- Joop, Kyle, Paul, Carlos, Todd, Shaunelle, Gabrielle, Emily, Matthew, and Nick, and everyone else who's shown me love and given me the courage to keep fighting and standing up for what is right.

...Jane moved back in the the Wizzard 5 days later, after he promised to marry her early next spring. Paul says, "sometimes the only reward for doing the right thing is knowing that the right thing was done." He may be correct, but I like to think that maybe in helping Jane escape the Wizzard once, we'll have at least given her a little courage. When I finally take my feather out, I'm going to send it to her.

LA Stories- C S I Almost Killed Us All

Working in The Machine that is CSI: Miami is no easy task, but since I was determined to become part of the Writer's Dept., I had to start somewhere. I began by volunteering as a Production Assistant for one of David Caruso's pet projects- a short film named "Rehab," shot at LA's famed Linda Vista Hospital. I worked hard and was noticed by the crew, and invited to apply for the upcoming Season 9's Production Office. It was a roundabout way to get to the Writers, but it was a definite foot in the door so I jumped at the chance...

After a brief but nervewracking interview, I was offered the job, and officially became a Production Office P.A. This meant I had to get up at 5:40 each morning and commute from Hollywood to Manhattan Beach in the worst traffic our Nation has to offer. This is the stuff nightmares are made of.

Once at work, I would open the office. This was a 45-step process, involving unlocking certain doors, locking others, starting some machines, shutting others down, turning on massive A/C units, warming up copiers, brewing coffee, printing, copying, "distro," (distributing,) etc. etc. etc. A huge process. And if the copier jammed or the wrong paper goes in the wrong slot, there is a hot and unholy hell to pay. One such morning, I was frantically trying to unjam this beast. I had a customer service rep on speakerphone while I viewed schematics online. An exec came and explained that it really needed to be fixed about 15 minutes ago.
This was all at 6:50am.

It's the size of a jet engine and I frequently found myself elbow-deep in it. My roommates would ask me how I got ink on my ears. Sigh.

For the most part, my fellow co-workers were very nice. Most of my job later in the day consisted of rushing up and down stairs, delivering various envelopes to various people around Raleigh Studios. I'd also get sent out on a lot of errands, sometimes to get a particular DVD from a particular store for the Guest Director's reference material, other times to load $40,000 worth of film into my trunk and tote it back to the set.

Apparently, EVERYTHING I did needed to be done 15 minutes before I was asked to do it, and I often found myself exhausted at the end of the day. The stress was equivalent to having a gun held to my face for 13 hours every day. They fed me really well- but I was losing weight and my hair started to fall out from stress. I recall waking up to my alarm, bitchslapping the snooze button and crying into my pillow so I wouldn't disturb my ex.

(After all, he had a long day ahead of him, waiting for his calling service to not call and playing video games.)

I'd turn my alarm off and walk towards my closet like I was approaching the gallows. I'd start to shake, and I'd have to sit down to put my shoes on. In the chill of the morning, beneath a bare lightbulb, I began every day of work shuddering on my closet floor like a frightened chihuahua. Eventually, I'd work up the nerve to walk (past the scary homeless guy in our parking garage) to my car and battle traffic. I'd often call home on the way for a pep talk. "I'm OK," I kept lying. "I'm OK..."

"You have to get up - there's crimes to solve and all five of us need fat free soy lattes."
"With no whip."

One particularly stressful day was unique- the copier jammed and my boss was extremely frustrated that I wasn't a Minolta Repairperson. I eventually solved the problem and emerged from the copier looking like I'd lost a battle with a Giant Squid. I was then handed an envelope and told to run it down to (Soundstage) 22 and hand it to Manny.
"Who's Manny," I asked, on my way down the stairs.
Obviously something was stressing her - I hadn't yet learned to not take everything so deeply personally, so I felt an incredible sense of urgency to deliver this envelope. I wanted it to be the best envelope delivery ever.
And then they'd love me again.

I hadn't made it down to 22 very often, but I knew to watch for a red light above the door to make sure opening it wouldn't disturb any filming. No red light meant go go go, so I wrenched open the heavy sound-proof doors and forged ahead. It was dark in there. Dark, and very, very quiet.

I could hear vague murmurings from what sounded like a film crew, but my eyes hadn't adjusted to the darkness yet. I just knew I had to get the envelope to Manny- fast- so I set off down what seemed to be a familiar path. It was, in fact, the right direction to go... except for the fact that shit gets moved around a lot on soundstages. A large portion of a room had been relocated, and the floor it sits on, (a slightly raised platform) had a corner just jutting out where my feet expected sea-level floor.

I tripped over this corner spectacularly, and in an effor to catch myself, stuck my arm out... into a glass shelf. These thin horizontal glass shelves make up the walls of the CSI: Miami Crime Lab set, and there are thousands of them- one carefully stacked on top of the other.

Much like dominoes.

It's a detective show - can you figure out what happened next?

The shelf I'd reached through slid a few inches forward, then out of its bracket and fell onto the one beneath it. Which cracked and began to shatter, crashing into the one beneath it. And so on and so forth.

My eyes chose that particular instant to adjust, so I was able to witness the utter decimation of the wall in 3-D Technicolor surround-sound glory. The domino effect was breathtaking, and the sound was phenomenal. It was the very sound of "expensive," as the glass continued to self-destruct pane by horrible pane. As if to mock me, the catastrophe SLOWED ITSELF DOWN, and continued the agonizing shattering for what seemed like a good two minutes.

Frozen in horror, I stood swimming in a sea of broken glass. Finally, the cacophany of destruction ceased, and I heard a voice ask "Are you cut?"

"I'm...so...sorry..." I stammered out.

"ARE. YOU. CUT." Someone asks again, less patiently.

"I don't think so, no..." I'm not. It's practically a miracle. I'd had a bad accident as a child involving broken glass, and here it was, my worst phobia come to life, and I was unscathed!


A Pair Of Arms lifts me out of the glass and sets me down amidst a crowd of pissed-off-looking crew guys.
"Um- are you Manny?" I ask the Arms. They point me to a guy with headphones. I hand Manny the envelope.
Manny can tell I'm on the verge of tears.
"Don't feel bad," Manny says. "It happens all the time."
"...No. Not really."

I get the hell out of there, avoiding the hairy eyeballs of the guys wielding push-brooms sweeping my carnage aside. I head to the stairwell, past my boss' desk and into the ladies room where I proceed to have a minor heart attack. I took a minute (which is a supreme luxury in the P.A. world) and then went back to my desk, certain that any moment the phone call would arrive recounting "the incident" and I'd be fired on the spot.

Miraculously, that call never came! Not a single person on that 40-man crew ratted me out- although they did re-name me "Trouble" and teased the crap out of me when I had to (cautiously) run errands on that set. Manny, Arms and the gang are OK in my book- they protected me to Live Another Day, and eventually survive the season, which lead to my internship with the Writer's Department. I owe a huge Karmic Debt to that crew- I'll never forget what it feels like to single-handedly destroy the Miami-Dade Police Department and be forgiven.

As an added bonus, I was cured of my phobia, and I now fear no glass, broken or otherwise. Once you take a bath in your nightmares, they're a little less intimidating.

LA Stories- GingerWolf

'Round about the time Horror Nights draws to a close, all the Scareactors start getting nervous that they haven't taken full advantage of the Happy Hunting Season. It is, after all, pretty much the one workplace where you're guaranteed to be as much of a freak as the freak next to you. Of the 540 Scareactors at HHN LA, only 60 of us were girls, so we pretty much have to overall advantage when it comes to choosing a mate.

Since I knew I'd be leaving LA within a month, I decided to use the opportunity as a test run for dating in the real world. I haven't been single since I was 16 years old, and if I was gonna crash and burn, I'd rather do it in LA and get it out of the way fast. However, like I said, I HAVEN'T BEEN SINGLE SINCE I WAS 16 YEARS OLD. I had no idea what I was doing, so I went balls-out and selected who I thought was the most attractive candidate: 6'4'', broad-chested, broody, reddish hair and a werewolf. Operation: GingerWolf commenced.

I started like any mature High Schooler by pointing him out to a girlfriend, Rachel. Oh, that's (NAME REDACTED.) I know him- he used to date one of my friends!"
"Sweet," I said. "Introduce us!"
Rachel assured me that I had a good chance, as his last several girlfriends were blondes. I was convinced- I was setting my sites. I would test my wings with GingerWolf.
Unfortunately, we seemed to be starcrossed from the get-go. Rachel and GingerWolf were never there on the same night, so I never got my introduction. With the clock ticking down on the last week, I sucked it up and decided to introduce myself. Even if he laughed in my face, what do I care? I'm Baby Fuckin' Firefly! KAMIKAZE!!!

Me: "Hey, I'm Jaime- I think we're both friends with Rachel?"
Him: "Uh... OK... yeah..."
Me: "She told me you might have a thing for blondes, so I thought I'd try my luck and see if you wanted to come to the diner tonight after work."
Him: "What? Really? Actually, I'm kinda digging brunettes these days..."
Me: "That's cool," I say. "Because I have a hat."
(I put my hat on at a jaunty angle, in demonstration.)
Me: "So should I save you a seat?"
(He pauses for a moment, realizes I'm joking, then laughs.)
Him: "Definitely."

His responses were somewhat slow, and he definitely didn't have the quick wit that I prize, but since I wasn't exactly looking at him for marriage material, I let it slide off my back. I'd gotten a "yes," and that was what I'd wanted. I was mighty pleased with myself.

GingerWolf must've asked around to learn my last name, because later that night, I got a FaceBook message from him appologizing for not showing up- in his words, he was "surprised and turned on by my abrasive invitation." (Does he know what "abrasive" means? I was certainly agressive, but not abrasive. I let my grammar snob cool off and finished reading the message.) "But," (he continues) he has a girlfriend and their relationship is on the rocks- he really wants to get to know me better but he wanted to let me know about his relationship and be up-front and honest. And he was sorry he didn't come to the diner, would I please text him that night and let him know I got the message so he wouldn't feel like a jerk for standing me up.

So I did- I texted him, thanking him for letting me know. I wished him the best of luck with his girlfriend and said something along the lines of "my loss- you're very pretty."

(The text that launched 1,000 texts.)

A flurry of texts came that night from GingerWolf, well into 5:00 in the morning. He texted me his address asking me to come over and "just snuggle," he texted me all about how miserable he was in his "sexless" relationship, on and on and on. Highly amused, flattered and a little bewildered, I kept the conversation going from the comfort of my own bed- ALONE.
But the texts kept coming.
And the phone calls.
Apparently, I had grabbed a tiger by the tail.

GingerWolf told me that he was "on a break" with his girlfriend, and really wanted to see me. He'd dropped out of Horror Nights (like a pussy) because "it was too much work," but kept inviting me to come over at 3AM after I got off so we could talk and get high. He also wants me to send him naked photos of myself.

First of all, I don't get high. It's not my thing. Fine for those who do, but it's not my style. Also, I get drug-tested at a lot of my jobs, so I can't be around that stuff. Second of all, naked photos? Really, GingerWolf? I don't have any naked photos. And if I did, I really wouldn't keep them on my phone. And if I did keep them on my phone, why would I send them to a near-stranger?

"Do u like anal sex?" he texts casually, at around 2AM. There's 2 things wrong with that text: One, NO. and Two, I can't stand it when people text "u." I'm a grammar snob with a tight butthole, what can I say...

It was time to do something about the Pandora's Box I'd opened.

"Send me pics, pleeeez," whined a text.

He then sent me a photo of his wang. Taken from a southern vantagepoint, you could clearly see the entire GingerWang, as well as a daintily held limpwristed hand pulling a t-shirt up over pale ab muscles.

I'd suggested about a week prior that GingerWang and I become FaceBook friends so I wouldn't just view him as a piece of meat, but he had yet to seal that deal, which made me wonder... Plus, Rachel warned me that he was a compulsive cheater, which was why it hadn't worked out with their mutual friend.

I teamed up with one of my housemates, who was pals with GingerWolf on FaceBook, and we selected the girl who posted the most items on his wall- a girl named Katie (NAME REDACTED.) When we viewed her profile, it said she was "In a relationship with FUCKING GINGERWOLF!!!"

Oh! The ignominy! The shame! I'd been LIED to! Had I taken the GingerBait, I would've inadvertantly become someone's Other Woman- not cool, GingerWolf! Not cool!
"So, who is Katie (NAME REDACTED)?," I ask.
Loooong pause.
"Thats the ex," he replies.
"So it's OK if I FB mssg her and make sure it's cool if you and I go out for coffee?"
Immediate response: "NO PLEASE DONT DO THAT!!!"

I took the text photo of his penis as a gift from the Universe, and immediately became That Guy- the reason you DON'T send naked photos to people you don't know very well. Many a friend of mine got a GingerWang text on October 31st reading "Happy Halloweiner!!!"
A daintily held wrist became a popular handshake amongst my inner circle- everyone enjoyed a chuckle about GingerWang, and I washed my hands of it.

About 3 weeks later...
I get a text out of the blue from good 'ol GingerWang, saying how he's sad and he misses me. He asks me out for coffee, "nothing sexual," and just to talk.
I agree, knowing full well that this very blog would only get better if we met face to face.
A few hours later, he texts me asking to come over and cuddle.
He never asks me for coffee.

However, on my way out of town, I stop at the diner to have brunch with some pals and apparently blazed right past GingerWang on my way out. Naturally, this prompts a text.
"I hate this rain... I'm sorry we never got each other," he says.
I say, "I suspect we value different things."
"Like what?"
"I like rain. And monogamy. Lil things like that. Happy Holidays, (NAME REDACTED)"
And I left it at that. I never got my sex tiger. But I never got an STD, either. Winner winner, chicken dinner.

A couple of weeks later, while trying to cheer up a friend, my good pal Chelsea and I got a little drunk. We'd been trying to figure out how to make an Ap out of the dick pic- something that would make it ejaculate confetti on someone's birthday, etc. Chelsea came upon the brilliant plan to text GingerWolf a douchey photo of HER ex, taken distastefully in front of a bathroom mirror in just his undies.
We send it to GingerWang from HER phone (an unknown number to him) with the caption "5'11, 180lbs. Los Angeles area. Wanna meet up?"
We then distracted ourselves texting various pals to see if they had any good dick pics on their phones so we could flood GingerWang with texts of various images and invitations.
My auto-correct made it sound like I was soliciting my guy friends for "Duck Pix?"

Life got in the way, sadly, so we abandoned the pursuit and forgot about it until a few days later when GINGERWANG RESPONDED TO THE TEXT!
In his characteristic bad spelling, he asks (Chelsea) "What will u do?"
Chelsea responds: "Whatever you want."
A day later, GingerWang fires back. "bj."
Upon recieving this news, I collapsed to the floor amidst a ton of latent pre-teen giggles.
Chelsea then sent me the biggest, veiniest bastard our harvest had yielded, (a frightening specimen which dwarfed GingerWang's) telling me that she'd forwarded it along to GingerWang with the caption "You First."

And we never heard from him again.

You learn something new every day, kids- but the moral of this tale is this:

I think that about sums it up.
...Duck Pix?

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

LA Stories: A Weekend in Reds and Blues

Saturday was to be the big day. I was scheduled to work the Matrix/L'Oreal hair show, and they were going to dye my hair red. I wanted some serious "F**K YOU" red hair. Instead, I got a new shade of shame...

We're supposed to arrive at 9:00AM, and unfortunately I was running precisely on time. I'd had a later night than intended on Friday, so I bitch-slapped my alarm clock's sleep button about 5 times too many. This resulted in a hap-hazard "ehhh screw it" cursory glance in the mirror. I looked like ass, but a professional was about to fix that for me! Hooray!

I arrived at the Luxury Hollywood Renaissance Hotel with a few minutes to spare, so I left my car in the valet area and went inside to determine whether or not I could be validated, since I was working at the hotel for the day. Negative. I moved my car to the nearby pay lot and ran to reach the prep room on time. I figured I could always move my car to the hair show lot (if there was such a thing) as soon as I met my contact. It was exactly 9:00 when I arrived, out of breath and probably a little more frazzled than appears attractive. Even so, it was allll about to be washed away...

I was a little leery of this hair show- particularly Matrix, because they'd cut off WAY too much hair during a "trim" last time. 6 inches, to be precise. But this time, as long as they didn't try and trick me into cutting my hair short, I wanted a change. I wanted to be sexy, and beautiful. I'm tired of wearing my emotional state on my head, on display for all to see that I'm clearly "in-between."

I opened the door to the prep salon and flashed my best smile to the first person I saw, who happened to be a horrified-looking fabulously dressed man.

"Hi, I'm Jaime- I'm looking for Michael?"

The man's eyes got wider as he literally shrank away from me, pulling his hand away and clutching it tightly to his chest.

"No," he said.

Puzzled, I pulled out my iPhone to confirm: "Oh, I was pretty sure my contact's name was-"

He cut me off. "Oh no. What HAPPENED to you?"


"Your hair is BLUE."

"Uh, well, yes... I told my agent I had a blue streak, and she-"

"No. We can't work with this. That is more than a... STREAK. THAT... is... something..."
At this point he seriously looked like he was about to throw up in his mouth. He began to back away from me, shaking his head. "Why did you DO THAT? I have to call your agent. This is..." Covering his mouth with his hand, he began hunting for a cell phone.

"Ok- in the meantime, where do you suggest I park?"

As he's dialing, he snarls, "Um, I don't know... PARKING?"

Mercifully, my agent (who is well aware of my blue streak) did not answer the phone, so the man I can only assume is Michael held a quick whispering conference with two other stylists, who approached me with sympathetic looks and a photo of what looked like a GI-Jane sort of model with buzzed hair and a single curl on her forehead. In soothing, hushed tones, they stepped close to me as they spoke, like they were dealing with a wild blue-haired animal.

"Honey, we know you need the work, but if we color your hair it'll snap right off..."

"It's SO DAMAGED, it'll just break right off."

"So why don't you let us cut it SHORT and dye it?"

"Like this?"

"Isn't that cute?"

"That would be so cute on you."

"Just gorgeous."

"Mm-hmm. Gorgeous."

"No," I said. "I can't do short hair."

"But it means you'd get to keep the job."

"Yes, think about the job- and you'd look so cute."

"Why don't you want short hair?"

"It's too much of a change for me right now," I said, backing up ever so slightly.

"Change is good," one said, stepping forward towards me.

"Yes, change is gorgeous." the second one steps forward too- I'm cornered now. "Why don't you want some change?"

"MY HUSBAND JUST LEFT ME," I blurt out, bursting spontaneously into a fountain of frizz and tears. "I DON'T WANT ANY MORE CHANGE!"

Dead. Fucking. Silence. You could hear a hair fall.

I'm horrified at the emotions pouring from my mouth and my eyes. I know my nose is next, so I tried to reign it in before it got worse. I snuck a peek over at Michael, who is staring at me in abject disgust with his mouth hanging open.

The two-headed monster lowers their buzz-cut model photo and takes a step backwards.

"Ohhhh," they say.

(One last effort:) "...Settle for a pixie cut?"

My total bill for parking wound up being a dollar. That's how long it took to reject me. The only logical thing to do at that point (since I no longer had to appear on any runways that weekend) was to stuff myself with breakfast at Kitchen 24 with my friend Dani, who looks amazing with her super short hair and curl on her forehead.

Then I went home and sank into a depression coma.

That night, I joined friends for dinner, and a passing drunk woman with super short hair told me how much she liked my blue. Sigh.

...The next day was better. I had lunch with friends. The only red in my life came from Blazin' Buffalo Wild Wings and a tied wing-eating competition with a gorgeous short-haired Audrey Hepburn lookalike. Short hair was haunting me- and matching me wing-for-wing.

I had one more spontaneous breakout that night as I cried with the sudden realization that I will surely die of mole cancer, because Jay had been the one my dermatologist made promise to keep an eye on my back moles for me. I suddenly got really sad while watching a movie with friends and announced dramatically that I would probably get mole cancer and die. (I'm allowed a few self-indulgent moments- I've been through a lot.) The three boys I was on the couch with sandwiched me while one of them sang the theme song from Cheers and they volunteered to check my moles for me right then and there.

As I laughed and cried through my nose, with my funny, handsome friends holding me tight, I suddenly felt much much better. Screw the hair show, and their bait-and-switch evil ways. I have a frizzy mane of blue-blonde-and-roots, and my friends love me anyways. Jay didn't leave me because I'm ugly, even if it made me feel that way. Jay left me because of Jay. And no man is worth changing who I am, inside or out. So I will not be cutting my hair or experiencing any drastic changes any time soon. I'm fine how I am- damaged, frizzy, breakable- and loved.

The very next morning, I showed up at my temp job to discover that the bitchy girl next to me had cut her hair shockingly short over the weekend. It looks terrible. I smiled.