Accidential calm. And datum of a deliberate variety.
I also haven't had my feverish compulsion to regurgitate for a while, so now I regurgitate:
25 cool or odd things that I have done or have experienced, for real and true.
1. Won a pony named Billy Blazer at the Walnut Festival when I was six.
2. Had a cool friend in High School, Dave. I wanted to show Dave my room, then decked out as a shrine to the Who (this is '84. I was fourteen.) Dave was really, really into the Who, so his opinion WAS EVERYTHING. He came over, checked out the Roger Daltrey at Leeds glossy, the Union Jack poster, the Maximum RnB poster... "Cool".
It's different than I expected.
What dyer mean?
I was picturing a poster of an orangutan in a Hawaiian shirt slapping his forhead and saying "I Hate Homework!".
Dave was kind of a dick.
3. Tried out for the gameshow, Jeopardy. Passed the written test with flying colors, then froze during the screen test portion. I spaced out and didn't hear them answering me question. Important skill on a quiz show.
4. Was briefly a CHILD STAR. Did impersonations of celebrities as part of a revue that performed in Sun Valley Mall. I was washed up at nine.
5. Shook hands with Gerald Ford at age six.
6. Commissioned John Doe from X to do a cajun version of "See You Later Alligator". Got to watch him and his band from a couch. Awesome.
7. Christopher Guest directed a web video I wrote. Awesome. It starred Fred Willard. Awesome.
8. I took acid once and went out with my friends with out telling them. TWICE!
9. First time I smoked pot, I was with J. and T. (13 years old) Climbed out of the bushes and went and bought a Coke. When I got back J. and T. were masturbating. I left.
10. Got to tour the Moeller SkyCar factory in Davis, CA. The PR lady who showed me around was hot. (The SkyCar is, in my opinion, a crock. But I don't know anything, so there you are.)
11. Was an exchange student in Japan my 18th summer. The trip was wasted on me, because I was more interested in the beer vending machines than, say, Kabuki. Got stung by a jellyfish, got a swelled up ankle from a lacquer plant, and dated a 24 year old Japanese woman. Good summer.
12. My wife knows the lyrics to "War Pigs".
13. My dad died when I was eleven. I had my big toe bitten by a crawfish that day at the creek.
14. I know a few published authors, a couple of film maker, a toy maker, and a soap opera star.
15. The people who visit my blog are nice and interesting.
16. I have, somewhere, a letter from Herb Caen, a dead newspaper columnist. I also have, somewhere, an autographed 8x10 glossy of Bob Wilkins former host of the seminal Bay Area late night crappy monster movie show, Creature Features. I have an email from comedian David Brenner, a couple of emails from blogger Andrew Sullivan, and an email from weirdo experimental guitarist Elliot Sharp.
17. The last gift I ever received from my mother (she died five years ago) was an anal sex video. This is actually true. And it's a very, very long story.
18. My father-in-law has a FREAKIN CHERRY '54 T-Bird
19. My friend Abe once gave a short biography of Petomaine, a French cabaret performer who could fart at will.
20. I got my driver's license at age 31.
21. The worst thing I have even done: I used to work with a guy named "M." who had sort of bulgy eyes. In an idle moment during a long meeting I wrote on my pad "M. is a bug eyed freak." and showed it to the guy next to me. We giggled.
Flash forward like four months. I am adverse to throwing out old notepads, so I had this thing lying on my desk (god, this is awful) and M. is over at the next desk. My wife-then-fiance had just started working at this little ad agency and she stopped by desk to say hi. She reads aloud "M. is bug-eyed freak! Who's M.?" Ahhhh, shit.
22. When Ruby was about four, we were watching a documentary about famous American method actors being trained in classic Shakesperean technique. Whatev, it was sort of interesting. Charles S. Dutton was on screen, kicking ass doing Othello's soliloquy. Ruby, who was playing with her Legos, stopped to watch this scene. She then gave me an explanation of what Othello was saying... and it was basically... right. I was creeped out and proud. Mostly creeped out.
23. I lived in Colorado for about a year. I had no friends, I went on one date with a really nice girl who I liked very much and she liked me, but she moved to Texas the week after our date. And an insane woman I had dated in California kept showing up at my townhouse unannounced. "Hi! I thought I'd visit."
Being young and plenty immature, I still slept with her and everything, but I didn't like her.
Oh, and you could only buy 2.5 beer on Sundays, which pissed me off to no goddamn end. Anyway, I was miserable.
I came back after a year and one of my first night's back, I hung out with my friends Michael and Jenna (now married. Michael the afore mentioned soap opera star, Jenna a radical and beautiful mother) and got shit-housed drunk on Jamieson's. The night was foggy and their 2nd story flat had a little balcony. I went out there on the balcony and was so happy to be back in the fog that I stripped nude. Michael brought me a blanket after a while.
24. My wife has these two incredibly foul-mouthed girlfriends who come over almost every week to share a couple of bottles of red wine while our pooled children run around screaming. It's pretty great.
I realize now that my parents were drunk a lot when I was growing up. My dad would down about five glasses of cheap chablis every night while I rubbed his waxie bald pate. I'd mix vodka and 7up for my mom. I think I probably poured them as double. I was all of nine at the time.
25. I also realize now that chase certainty can cause you a lot of grief, and you (or, rather I) am hugely better off poking around and being curious for the sake of being curious. Ask questions, respect the answers -- even if they're wrong -- and read a shit load of books. Know that you will never, ever know anything about anything. Make an effort to understand your own conditioning, and whenever it's eyhically correct to do so, mind your own business. That's the ticket.
Oh, and if you get the chance, eat some mushrooms every five years or so. Just to blow all the shit out of your head.