Tuesday, July 29, 2008

earthquake #2

So about an hour ago I experienced my second earthquake. According to the LA Times, it was a 5.4 and its epicenter was about 35-40 miles from where I live. It's been almost exactly a year since my first earthquake. Hmmm . . . Anyway, it still scared the hell out of me. I was all shaky. The thing was, it was a lot longer than the first one. It was at least 20 seconds--my metronome was on, since I was practicing! I didn't even put my instrument down, it didn't occur to me, so I just stood in the door of my room with it in my hand. And even seconds can feel like forever. Some CDs fell off my bookshelf. The ceiling light fixture in our living room shook a lot. And I got a jolt of adrenaline that is still wearing off. It was kind of hard to practice afterwards. Actually, running through an audition list right after an earthquake would be great practice--it feels kind of like the adrenaline from an audition. Too bad I don't have anything ready yet. And I was practicing EH, not oboe. Meanwhile, the construction workers on the street didn't appear to notice and just kept drilling. No car alarms went off. But seriously, such an unnatural feeling. The earth is the one thing my body thinks it can count on to stay still! It is SOOO WEIRD when it starts to move. Although, in some ways, how it feels makes sense. I imagine enormous plates of the earth grinding past each other, and that I'm on those enormous plates, and it's basically a big, bumpy ride. But I never want to be an anything bigger than that one, thank you.

Monday, July 28, 2008

enjoying a staycation

My friend Leanna, from way back at SJS, came to visit me in LA last week. We had a lot of fun and did all those touristy things, most of which were new to me as well. There was the Getty, which I've seen a few times before, but also a new exhibit of beautiful Japanese art at LACMA, the La Brea Tar Pits, which are totally fascinating, a tour of WB, a taping of the Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson, a hike and a beach in Malibu, and Disneyland. And yes, I had reached the ripe age of 24 without having ever been to Disneyland or Disney World. Anyway, Leanna took some great pictures, and here are a few.

mother duck and ducklings at the getty

El Matador Beach, Malibu

Mr. Weasley's car from Harry Potter

one of the batmobiles from The Dark Knight

lizard in Malibu

edge of rock pool in Malibu


The taping was kind of weird, because Craig Ferguson has to look into the TV camera, obviously, but basically that feels like the live audience is completely ignored, despite having been instructed to laugh and cheer our heads off. In other news, we saw Jay Leno driving down the 101 in one of his antique autos (that looked WAY dangerous to me). I got a bike!!!!! which I have yet to ride because I don't have a helmet, but hopefully will get one tomorrow. I guess that's about it for now. And oh yeah, I took the whole week off from oboe and am now trying to get back into it again. Fun times.

Monday, July 21, 2008

more movies and such

I guess I've been seeing a lot of movies lately. On Friday I saw Hellboy II, and I really enjoyed it. I love Guillermo Del Toro's creatures. I especially like the giant beanstalk monster. See, I've also been enjoying a little indoor gardening recently: I am the proud seeder of 3 flourishing mini-rose plants, small medium & large, with delicate pink petals and lovely soft scent; 9 little basil plants that are also quite tasty; plus the recent addition of 5 sunflower seedlings, 2 strawberry seedlings, and 5 cosmos seedlings. Oh, and one lavender and a rosemary that I picked a stem from and then rooted in water. So far so good, though the strawberry seedlings are incredibly tiny. Anyway. I like to talk to them and spend a little time with them to help them grow (yes I'm crazy I know but I've loved plants and gardens since I was a little girl). And something that I notice when I study them: they are so determined and strong, those little seeds, and they grow so quickly, that if you were to magnify that process, it would be, well, kind of terrifying. So I really liked the beanstalk monster. Plus its death was actually really beautiful.

And tonight I saw Mamma Mia! with Ginni after a gig. It was very uplifting--can't help tapping your foot and singing along to those irresistible tunes! Plus, I have to say, Pierce Brosnan, Colin Firth, and Stellan Skårsgaard are still pretty handsome fellas, and its fun to watch such "serious" actors let loose. Same can be said about Meryl Streep, Julie Walters, and Christine Baranski. I am not saying Mamma Mia! is a fantastic movie, but I am saying that it's A LOT of fun.

Still haven't made it to The Dark Knight, but that's also very hard to get tickets to. Anyway, I'm glad to have a friend from high school visit me and to have an actual vacation starting tomorrow. We're going to do all the fun LA things, like Disneyland and a studio tour and the Getty and LACMA and LaBrea Tar Pits and beach etc etc etc. Still have some errands to run before I pick her up tomorrow evening, and then the fun can begin!

Wednesday, July 9, 2008


I followed a link from a friend's facebook page to this web site that sort of intellectualizes the popular LolCats site, and I thought this was quite amusing:


Monday, July 7, 2008

ping pong

One of my neighbors has apparently bought a ping pong table. I can hear the pings and pongs, and their shouts of frustration when they miss the ball. The alley between my apartment building and the one next to it has very strange acoustics.

Saturday, July 5, 2008


Someone told me there was a song by Ween called Gabrielle, and that if I just searched my name on iTunes it would come up. So I did. It was the first to come up, but there were any number of other songs also entitled "Gabrielle." Many of them seem to be from the point of view of men who've had their hearts broken by a Gabrielle. Hmm. I also found it amusing to hear 30-second clips from songs featuring my name in so many genres: country, Cajun, Caribbean, rock, Latin, hard rock, jazz, you name it. Very funny.

Friday, July 4, 2008

4th of July

Happy Independence Day! I had a lovely day doing all the appropriate things: going to the beach, getting sunburned, eating hamburgers and ice cream, watching fireworks, and all in good company, too! Hope your day was as fun as mine!

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Once Upon a Time in America

I just finished watching Sergio Leone's last film, Once Upon a Time in America. I'm not sure what to think. I found it very confusing. I'm not even sure of the basic points of the plot. It's a long movie (almost 4 hours) and I watched it over a period of several days, so the beginning parts are now too hazy in my memory to properly correlate with the ending. I checked out the message board on IMDB, which I don't usually do unless I really don't understand something (because people tend to start arguing and say really stupid and/or offensive things on them), and there are all these posts about the "Opium Theory." I should point out that at the beginning of the movie the main character is drugged out on opium and that the story is not told in a linear fashion, but rather with both flash-forwards and flashbacks. The "Opium Theory" holds that the flash-forwards are hallucinations made up by the character. I don't buy it. It is a very strange future, but not one that a character from the 30s would really be able to make up. I don't know. But I still don't understand who betrayed whom and why. In addition, while the violence in typical Spaghetti Western matches the over-the-top style of the movies, the violence in this was more intense and at the same time more personal. There is a particularly difficult-to-watch rape scene, as well. Anyway, if anyone has seen this movie, (if you haven't I haven't really given anything away), I'd be interested in their thoughts.

new license

I got a California driver's license today. Or, a little slip of paper stating that in 2 weeks I will get one in the mail. And THEY TOOK MY TEXAS LICENSE. I haven't even lived in Texas for the past seven years, but still, it feels weird. The CA driver's test is also kind of difficult, at least compared to the TX one that I remember, and you can only miss 3 out of maybe 20 or 25 questions. I was grateful to have passed in one go. I think my picture was weird and my signature illegible. Oh well. I guess I'm really a Californian now?