This week has gone by awfully fast in some ways, and not fast enough in others. The not fast enough parts have been related to my return to a regular workweek, since the week before I left was short, and I quit checking my work email around halfway through vacation. Adjusting to working again took a few days.
The other is that I immediately resumed my calendar, as it was, upon touching down in Los Angeles. Monday, I took off to stay home. It was the Master & Servant skate at Wumpskate, but I decided I didn’t have the energy to attempt to skate poorly and fall on my ass several times in the process, even if it was a Depeche Mode themed event. So I stayed home and had tea with Deena and showed her my photos from Paris.
Then, just after she left, I remembered the date. May 8th. And I remembered that I had a traffic violation due May 9th. The problem is, I never get around to dealing with traffic violations. I always let them sit until a warrant is issued, and they end up costing $200. And this year, I’m really trying to be a less spacey, more grounded, responsible Jillian. I have to start learning from my traffic violation nonpayment mistakes, not repeating them. It frustrates me when I make the same mistakes over and over. So then, of course, thinking about dealing with the ticket worried me, and I couldn’t sleep. And I don’t think drinking four double-shot cappucinos over the course of the day (shiny new work coffeemaker!) helped one bit.
Tuesday, I was up bright and early so I could deal with the ticket though. In fact, I was at work by 7:30, so I could print off some documents, check in, and then head back to the DMV early enough to avoid lines and waits. The violation itself was because I didn’t have proof of insurance when I went to renew my tags, and didn’t actually receive the tags as a result. Rather than actually print the cards and go back to the DMV, I procrastinated, and then got a ticket for expired tags. So I had to return to the DMV, prove my insurance, get the sticker for my car, and then go to the West L.A. County Courthouse to pay my debt to society.
At which point I realized – I’d successfully navigated the DMV bureaucracy, but had forgotten my purse – somewhere – and my chequebook was in my office desk drawer.
I went back to work, hoping my purse would be there. It wasn’t. And by then, I’d negotiated out my plans for the evening, and needed my driver’s license for them. So I left the office again an hour before court closed, with my chequebook, to deal with the ticket ($10! such a bargain!) and then slogged through pre-rush-hour traffic back out to Venice to get my purse before returning to my desk.
This little adventure meant staying late at work to get through my tasklist and email backlog, of course, and then I was late for the E3 Blogerati Meetup at the Golden Gopher downtown. Where some of my favorite bloggers from b.la were hanging out and laughing over the video game tables. I procured a lovely concoction called a Van Gopher (Van Gogh caffeinated vodka and Baileys) and joined them. Heather from StreetWars, BarCamp and many other wonderful things was there briefly, but left before I could catch up with her, leaving me to chat for a while with Cybele from Candyblog and fellow Ridazz, Mack from LAVoice and Will. I hope to see those two on bikes tonight, as well, but I welcome all opportunities to hang out with the bloggers.
From there, however, I had to ditch out and head east. Far East. To Pasadena. Because I’m dating a guy from the 626. Pasadena, for those of you not from L.A. (this means you, Vancouverites), was the first city to be connected to downtown by freeway, turning it into an L.A. suburb. Yet it seems like a separate city, despite being closer to downtown than other parts of L.A. that are unquestionably the same metropolis. It’s about fifteen miles northeast of downtown Los Angeles, separated from Hollywood to the west by mountains, and from downtown to the south by a couple early (now mostly minority) suburbs. Still, I never realized how close Pasadena was to downtown until l took the Gold Line tour last summer – it’s the Metro route that goes out there. It’s just always seemed Far. And from Venice Beach, it is. This has led to many hilarious L.A. transportation related discussions that sound like they’re straight out of a Steve Martin movie. And to make matters worse, from there, we were just backtracking to Hollywood, which is closer to downtown, so that we could go to Darkroom
I tolerate this Pasadena nonsense for a good reason. I’m actually dating a guy who considers goth nights a legitimate date activity. And it was his idea – not mine – to go to the Darkroom. It turned out to be in what I call the Hollywood grunge zone, the blocks of Santa Monica below Sunset that seem to be more Los Angeles than Hollywood, the area which also houses dive bars and art galleries, and attracts the low-income hipsters. And it was, indeed, very very dark. We arrived in time to catch gendeath‘s set, and spent an hour or so watching the crowd, drinking vodka, and generally checking out the bar.
However, all this fun on Tuesday, combined with more caffeine to fight off the sleep loss Monday night, meant that I woke up entirely too early Wednesday, after very little sleep. And was wrecked for most of the day. And I almost missed the kickball championship game I posted about yesterday morning, because I’d gone home and napped and not woken up. But my intrepid account executive, who is on my team, phoned me just in time, and I woke up early enough to play. And then I went home instead of to the bar to celebrate, because I am lame, and went right back to sleep.
And then last night, I went for dinner with my wonderful friend Wendy, who is, without question, one of my bestest friends anywhere (but especially here in L.A.), and then we went to hang out at her house with a pint of chocolate soy-and-fruit-sweetener ice cream, and then I came home and caught up on yet more sleep.
Suddenly, it’s Friday, and I have to somehow get my laundry washed, dried and put away, not to mention tidy my room, at some point in the next thirty-six hours. And in between all THAT, I have Ridazz tonight, and want to be at bike workshops tomorrow afternoon, and have to get across Los Angeles without a car a couple times. And I have to figure out what to wear tomorrow night, because whatever I wear has to go from the local Venice dive bar (where it is my friend Zee’s birthday) to Bar Sinister, and I really don’t want to hang out at a bar full of people in jeans wearing a full length PVC dress, so it’s going to have to be Toned Down.
I didn’t have to worry about toning it down LAST Saturday though, so here’s a self-portrait I took just before leaving my hotel room in Paris. I like it because the extreme eye makeup makes me look a little like a Jhonen Vasquez cartoon:
And now, it’s time to hose myself off and get to work. It’s Friday. Los Angeles is out there, waiting for me to finish work and welcome me back.