Secret Pop

Jan 14, 2005

The Rain in Spain

Martín and I went to The Improv tonight to catch Paul F. Tompkins and Andy Kindler and David Cross and surprising bits of coolness from Jonah Ray and Eddie Pepitone. Martín was under the weather, and I was sort of similarly, but when we commit to a night of comedy, it's written in stone.

Martín has finished moving in, and in case you didn't hear it from me personally, his new apartment is quite literally a block away from mine. Even on the same street, no less. It's the nearest we've ever lived to one another since the commencement of our friendship, more than eight years ago. I predict that we will be going to countless shows around town from now on. And that he will overprotectively demand to drive my car home while I pretend to be drunker than I actually am. Score. I also predict that we will grow to despise each other some time within the next three to six months. The price of proximity.

I have nothing important to say. Except that listening to movies in Japanese makes me feel closer to myself than listening to movies in any other language. I was watching that movie -- I think it's called Escaped Convict Baby -- with Skeet Ulrich and Gary Oldman in it before it was time to go out tonight, and I realized that the loop of The Sea Is Watching, even when I couldn't really look at the subtitles or remember how to translate the dialogue, was a much better film. If only because it reminded me what good nigiri tastes like and what wonderful liqueurs you can buy at Japanese 7-11s. How I do miss my Violet Fizz. And my Cobra- and News-brand whiskeys. Cheap cheap cheap and with a reasonable likeness of Dick Tracy on the label of at least one of those. Mild Seven cigarettes. Popeye magazine. Everything seems so ridiculous when you actually write it down. How I do reminisce about the year when I was fifteen. I guess I would rather hear people talking in Japanese through an accidental party line than watch a movie with lame American dialogue in it. Baby Boom was on the other night. I didn't watch it at all. But if I did, I would have scoffed at Diane Keaton's belted suits, and then I would have wished she was talking in Nihongo. I miss my sweet Yokosuka. I really do. Pay for me to spend an afternoon in the train station outside the Naval base, and I will be your friend for life. Seriously. I will provide a string quartet for your wedding. I will cook exotic meals for you. I will go to Melrose with you and truthfully tell you what you should and shouldn't buy. This is an investment in your future. Jessie went to Paul's web site recently and found her way to the links list, where she stumbled onto, an Internet destination that has been among my favorites since at least early 1998 or 1999. Just saying that makes me feel like an old woman in a wheelchair. The fact that I was using the Internet back when it was new and many people did not understand it is just further proof that I have no business buying the new Franz Ferdinand CD. I shouldn't be allowed to buy any music that postdates Linda Ronstadt (who is dead now, right?). It's not a question of age. It's a question of prolonged sentience. And I have been technologically aware for far too long. Anyway, that web site also makes me want to go back to that special place where everyone spits on the ground and an apple costs like ten bucks. Ah, me -- the magic of my youth.

There's a C2 (that's the new bullshit Coca-cola lower-carb soda) commercial with Queen's I Want to Break Free acting as soundtrack. This reminds me of Beulah's tutelage that Germany uses Queen songs as advertising soundtrack for everything. Apparently, the song needn't even have any narrative relationship to the commercial. Germans just feel like spending money when Queen songs are involved. I guess I feel the same way. But I won't spend any money on C2. I'd rather buy a fancy vodka.

Beulah leaves tomorrow for her expansive East Coast trip. She's all stressed out because she has to accompany a busload of eighth-graders to various important educational spots, including the presidental inauguration. I'm sure it will be awesome, and she will be awesome. And if you are a mutual friend of ours living in the D.C., New York City, Philadelphia, or other major historical U.S. city area and you know Beulah's cell phone number, by all means, start punching those numbers. She's coming to town, and there isn't a moment to lose! If you don't have her cell phone number, you probably feel like a huge jerk right now. And rightfully so. Hint: It's not (888) 2-GOOD-4U, but it might as well be.

I'm always hoping I'll be brilliant when I start writing. But I'm often disappointed. And tonight, I'm going to play a few PlayStation2 games to cleanse my palate of that sensation. You're already sleeping. So what difference does it make?

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