Posts Tagged ‘International Avenue’

Late Night Post

August 11, 2013


Just got off the BART and back through prostitute and crack infested waters.


International Avenue it is going on out there.

Grateful to have bicycled in and grateful that I don’t have to think about bicycling in at this late an hour again for the time being, if not for a long time being.

This could possibly be the last time I take a BART on a Saturday night to Fruitvale station to traverse the International crazy.

Next week I will be at Burning Man, at the Early Man celebration, watching some art burn baby burn.

I will be out at the event for three weeks, then back and I pretty much will go right out to the studio in the Avenues.

Not the International Avenue or the East Oakland Avenues…

“Oh, damn,” my friend said to me as we caught up to each other on the corner of Harrison and 24th, he to his place, me to the nail salon, “I thought you were going to say 51st and Telegraph,” when I told him the address in the East Oakland neighborhood.

“You are really in it, it’s not good over there,” he concluded.


It has not been awful, let me be true, Gracelandia has been splendiferous, and I do like the smell of the taco truck that so consistently packs them in all hours of the night, but it has not been altogether that great either.

I joked with John Ater today when I was describing my commute the one time I rode my bicycle from the house in the Sunset, those are the Avenues I am talking about, and how I saw nary a hooker or a crack head or heard a “hey baby,” just fog and the muffled quiet of a beach town.

“It’s like its own quiet secret beach resort town that nobody knows about,” an acquaintance told me this afternoon when we were chatting.  

I discovered she lives at 42nd.

“I can hear the ocean at night when I go to sleep,” she said.


That will be nicer to listen to then the cat calls, hollers, car alarms, sirens, and side shows I am getting used to, sort of, hearing.

The melodic smash bang soothe of the ocean surf.


I will be going to hear that sound, and then some others, sounds that is, tomorrow.

I got VIP tickets to Outside Lands!

Outside Lands is also the reason I have had two late nights getting back to Graceland–I have been nannying for the mom and dad who went to see Paul McCartney on Friday and tonight went and saw Phoenix and Nine Inch Nails.

They decided they were not going to go to the show tomorrow and offered me the passes.

I have two VIP bracelets in.

I am going with my lovely friend who happens to be my lovely soon to be landlord, who happens to live, yes out by the concert.

I was told were the VIP entrance is and how to go through and into the festival grounds, ok, really? I get to be up close and personal to see



And maybe, giggle, Hall and Oates.

Depending on when I get there and how I navigate and what tickles me fancy, I am thinking of this:

Fishbone, followed by Slim Jenkins, then Hall and Oates, I mean come on, you know I gotta, and after that mellow groove, I will get my shake my ass out at A-Trak (can you say Whoa) and after that Willie Nelson and Family, followed by the Peppers to round it out.

Now, I don’t know if that’s all going to suss out.

That’s a long ass day in the park.

I was told that the food in VIP was good and the facilities good, and it will be nice to be, hate to say it, but, a little away from throngs, I will be able to get better access to all the stages, but will I have it in me to be there all day long?

I don’t know.

But, god damn, I am going to give it the old college try.

I did have to rearrange the schedule tomorrow a little, but again, totally worth it.

The unsung perks of being a nanny.

Going to Burning Man.

Going to Outside Lands.


And of course, the falling in love bit, that happens too.

I was talking to the mom before they headed out and I joked that it was a hazard of the job, but one worth having.

We were discussing what she was going to need in regards to when I got back from the playa and working out a schedule.  So far, I have two confirmed days, with a share, and one solo day.  

I know more will follow.

I don’t want to commute to North Oakland, but I am keeping my fingers crossed that I will get some North Oakland to come into the city.  The mom at with the Cole Valley home said I could nanny out of her home, even on days when I wasn’t with her son, if that was what I needed to fill out my hours, she would open her house to me.


It’s so nice to be thought of well.

I am still blown away by that, I still feel like Sally, “you like me, you really like me?!”

You like me enough to give me tickets and put me up in your Airstream trailer.

You like me enough to trust your children to me and your house and your car.

Mom in North Oakland offered me the car!

I know I mentioned that in a post, or I think I did, I am super relieved to have that happen, then I can get me stuff, my Burning stuffs, which I packed up the majority of it today, over to Cole Valley.

So much left to do, is what my brain says, how is it all going to happen?

One step at a time.

With some dancing thrown in to put me in the mood.



July 25, 2013

You have won crackhead bingo!


I saw my midget prostitute today.

I win.

I don’t know why seeing this woman puts a smile on my face, is it the cliché of it all?

She was dressed up more so than the last time I saw her, she looked like a miniature Julia Roberts from Pretty Woman.

Which fyi, was NOT filmed in East Oakland.

In case you were wondering.

She was dolled up in a platinum blonde wig, a very tight leopard print mini dress, and black boots.

Like you know, a three-year old might wear.

If she were a hooker.

I totally smiled, and I shit you not, I almost found myself waving.


Just your friendly neighborhood crazy girl bicycle commuting through East Oakland in the late morning, oh yeah, it was morning.

I was not smiling or laughing or waving to anybody tonight on my ride home.

I just missed the magic hour of dusk and the end of the work day commute and got caught in the let’s get it on of after dark Oakland.

It was getting on.

I was just pedaling as fast as I could and doing my best to slow down and breathe, to not stay standing at any intersection, to always be in motion, to be seen, to not get hit, to not get harassed.

I made it back alive and not too scared to tell the tale.

The girls during the day are not the same girls that work the nights, from what I can tell.

I still would like to take my camera out and catch a few of them.

Not working, but you know, working.

I did take some surreptitious photographs at the park today.

I took out the camera to capture a man sitting nodding off on a park bench with ropes of drool coming out of his mouth.

Every once in a while he would come to, sit up, regal, raise a hand and softly point, almost wave, in a direction.  Like was directing slow motion traffic in his mind.

Then he would lean forward and nod back out.

I was busy watching my charge, but being on hyper nanny alert I was also, I always do, making sure he was not a threat.

He was harmless in a sad, old man, down on his luck sort of day.

I thought later, what if my perspective is skewed?

He was sitting on a park bench, nodding out, so he got his fix, in warm sunshine, children laughing and playing t-ball in the lot.  He was probably happy as a fucking clam.

Unlike the little girl whose mother pushed her down the big kid slide after getting impatient with her not having the immediate courage to do it (it is a steep ass slide, fuck, I went down it once and got nervous).

Pushed her the fuck down.

Congratulations bitch cakes, you just gave your child fear of heights in one stupid move.

I saw a beautiful three-year old, I know because she was introduced to me as such, go from being happy and joyful to scared, screaming, frightened.

Then it became hysterical crying.

And it was bordering on the tantrum crying that cannot be stopped.

I got up and left.

It was so uncomfortable.

I would rather watch a fucking junkie homeless man nod off on a bench then listen to the little girl wailing and I knew the crying was going to stop and it was going to stop when she got hit.

It was pretty obvious that was the route it was taking.

And the kid knew it too, which I think was adding to the hysterical crying.

“Home,” my charge said.

“I couldn’t agree more,” I said and picked her up and tucked her into my side and got the fuck out of there.

“Leaving before it catches,” a dad said with a wry chuckle.

“Something like that,” I said.

PTSD alarm bells ringing in my head.


The crying broke with a desperate, abrupt wail about a half block out.

I am just glad my charge was not there to see it.

You can explain away the nodding out junkie, “he’s taking a nap in the sun,” you can’t explain away the parent that pushes their own child down a slide and then hits them later when the child does not respond well to your action.

No thank you.

“I have decided what your playa name should be,” my employer said to me this afternoon when I showed up for the gig, my charge already down for her nap.

The mom’s eyes gleamed with pleasure.

“Mary-Fucking-Poppins!”  She said, gleefully.

Oh my god.



I am Mary Fucking Poppins, or MFP, for shorts, you know.

That will be my street name.

“No, sir, I am not working, I am just getting done with work, no sir I am in child care, no, not childish care, I am a nanny, yes you heard me, ass hole, my name is MARY FUCKING POPPINS.”

Then I would bean him with my umbrella and fly away on my magical bike.

Which might be a little E.T. but the image rather works for me.

And I did get a new parasol for the playa, yes I did.

Bright red.

In the shape, of a, wait for it.



I love myself.

I crack myself the fuck up.

In other news, I will be house sitting this fine upcoming weekend, in San Francisco, in Cole Valley, in the Upper Haight, yo.

So, let’s do some hanging out and some coffee and or tea having.

And since I will be staying at my Burning Man families place, I will be bringing my playa bike over from my friend’s house on 19th and Valencia.

After a short pit stop at the bike shop to get my Fat Banana saddle.

Fingers crossed my bicycle basket with the daisies comes in this week as well.


I am Mary Fucking Poppins.

Good lord.

Easing In

July 23, 2013

The week starts out with a three hour nap.

Thank you Jeebus.

That was amazing.

Now, I expect the other shoe to drop, no napping for the rest of the week, explosive diapers, teething atrocity, baby bedlam.

Not really.

There is no other shoe that is about to drop.

I have quietly, slowly, even at times, painfully, discovered this.

The anxiety about what may or may not happen in the future, anytime near or far, is just not worth holding onto.

Although John Ater has mentioned to me that perhaps I should worry more, because none of the things that I worry about actually happen.

I usually spend a few minutes after getting back from a Rockridge adventure after work, trying to force myself to wind down.

Must go to bed.

Must go to bed.

Must write.

Must write short, pithy blog that readers will appreciate reading and I will feel sense of accomplishment for having typed so fast my fingers are sore.

Speaking of sore fingers I may find myself reverting back to a bicycle riding prop that I have not used in years–gloves.

My hands and wrists are getting sore from the long commute.

I don’t mind the commute, although today, shocker, like every day, I did observe a few things.

“Queens not Hoes” was white washed over on the wall of the building it was splashed across.

Queens not garden rakes.

So sweet.

Instead of the sweet, albeit grammatically incorrect graffiti, the new artist had put up a splashy “Everyone is Trayvon” graffiti.

But it was not well done and it was not worth the stop in my bicycle commute to document with my camera.

I almost did not take out my camera on my way home either, although I expressly brought it with me after last nights spectacular moon rise.  I did not want to miss another opportunity to take that kind of photograph.

However, the banks of clouds were not parting to show off the rising moon, it stays hidden behind heavy purple clouds that look as though they might drop an unexpected summer torrent of rain.

Instead, when in the moment, I looked back to gauge my timing to turn left, I have to cross two lanes and then pop into the turn lane right after 50th, I saw the sky behind me on fire.

I swung over to the gutter, took my feet out of my Hold Fast straps (pedal retention like cages) and managed to pull out my camera and catch a few shots before seeing a perfect gap in the traffic to shoot over.

I took a few shot, bundled up the camera, and pedaled quick and fast across the road way before the next onslaught of trucks jacked up on huge rims, flashing silver and white.

I was thinking about pulling over by Talk of the Town and taking some photographs of the neon signage outside the bar, but there were too many gentlemen of the drunken variety and a posse of young men across the street obviously holding.

I did not stop.

Although, given the chance I will.

I did like the shots I got though.

Kelley Moore Paints

Kelley Moore Paints


International Avenue

Sunset Reflections




I had another moment today when I wanted to take some photographs, but only because I planned on being the nanny police and turning in a little riot of teenager drinkers and smokers in the park that I took my charge to.


Must you roll and light up that blunt right there?


And then smoke it too?

Come on.

The entire playground was rife with pot smoke.

Then I heard the smashing of a bottle on the ground, a flask had been passed around and dumped into the bottles of Ocean Spray Cranberry Cocktail in the quartet’s busy paws.

I am not surprised by underage drinking or drugging.

Not really.

I am not normally so nosy, either.

But I was pissed.

They were babies with babies.

The stroller was a trashed out single mom ghetto stroller that you might see a homeless man pushing.

However, I was quite aware that the fifth person in the group was napping and his/her legs were dangling out the bottom of the carriage while the two girls and two guys drank and passed around the blunt.

I just had to let it go.

What was I going to do?

Call CPS.

At least they weren’t smoking crack in the park.

At least the kid was napping.

I mean, who am I to judge?

I think I know better, but it’s not my kid and I can’t rescue them, I can hardly rescue me.

I just turned my attention to where it needed to be, on the tow-headed joy of a little girl I had right in front of me demanding to go down the swirly slide.

“Up, up, up, up,” she said, raising her arms and pleading with me with bright shiny eyes.

“All rewards, but none of the work, eh?” I asked her.


Ok, I am a sucker for a kid who uses please.

I lifted her up and tipped her over the side at the top of the swirly slide and watched her happy and content twirl down the green plastic slide.

She told me when it was time to go.


And walked me to the gate when it was time.

We walked back, picked jasmine, smelled the flowers, talked to a puppy, talked to a drive way, pointed out dad’s car, and showed up at home for “Na, nas”.


She ate half my apple today, half of an avocado, black beans, turkey, cheese, blueberries until the cows came home, and a few yogurt Puffs.

Baby crack.

But good for keeping the hands busy when you need to attend to something.

We played stickers, read about poop, and sang songs.

Not a bad way to start the week.

And I managed to get my camera out too.

Week has officially begun.

What’s next?

I am ready.


Something Else is Being Planned

July 22, 2013

Without your knowledge.

I am looking at next weekend and the following two weeks as a great big surprise party that the Universe is throwing me.

I was going to go help out one of the families next weekend at the What the Festival in Oregon, but their needs changed and my need was negated.

So, no music festival in Oregon for me.

Just means that something more spectacular and more up my alley are coming down the pipeline.

To horribly mix my metaphors.

If how I felt today was indicative of how I will react, which it isn’t, but for the moment I will say it is, I am going to be just fine.

I had no plans today except to be at Church and Market for one hour at 6:30 p.m. today.

I slept in, did laundry, got off–hey you got to make hay while the sunshines–both sets of roommates and girlfriends were out of the house and well, me being the only one in the house, I made use.





Wrote some more.

Worked on some stuff for the design firm for a little while and planned out what I would need to do for her for the remainder of the week.

And billed for the two weeks prior–not much man, but the experience is so worth it I have no complaints.


Had some lunch.

Did my hair all sassy and set out for the city.

I ran into Sean.


On the street as I was crossing from 15th over Market.

He was on his bike and pulled over and gave me a big ol’ hug and we chatted about his new job and how much he loves it and the pop up restaurant and Burning Man.

I haven’t seen him since last year’s burn.  I thought I might catch him at the Media Mecca BBQ in Petaluma but that did not happen.

It was good to see him.

I love random friend spotting.

Not too long thereafter I ran into another friend I had not seen in a while.

For obvious reasons.

She looked horrible and I was so sad to see her that way and so happy to see her again the two feelings negated each other.

She looked like a shrunken, beaten, scrawnier version of Mick Jagger on a bad run.

But she was alive and I was grateful.

Both to see her again and to see that I don’t have to do that shit today.

No, no I do not.

My life.

I am so cotton picking grateful for my life.

I have a life in which I am free to travel about, to work, to eat well, to see friends, to drink hot spicy cinnamon tea (the Bengal Spice is in the house, yo), where I get to ride a bicycle that is really cool.

It is really cool.

That I am allowed to not be in bondage to drugs, alcohol, cigarettes, sugar (21 days now!) and most of all from those bad habits I indulge–believing my thoughts about myself rather than reflecting that I am a result of my actions.

Little revelations that grow and change and change me.

Charge me.

Light me up like a battery.

Fly me to the moon.

Did you see the moon rise tonight?

It was heralded by ribbons of pink smoked clouds and indigo skies.

It rose heavy, white, creamy soft, full.

The juxtaposition of it, the beauty of it in comparison to some of the squalor I pass on my bicycle ride back to Graceland, transported me.

I felt like I was on an alien planet.

I felt like I was in a George Lucas sci-fi movie.

That may be all it is.

That welter of gratitude for the skyline and the press of the moon behind the criss cross of telephone wires across International Ave.

That could be it completely.

There is sustenance and beauty everywhere that I can let myself see.

I could not even find it in me to worry about my finances and what will happen when I get back from Burning Man and who will I nanny for where.

I just did not have it in me to not coast along the serene line that just taking the next action in front of me led my day down to.

Sometimes that really is it.

Hot shower.

Clean laundry.

Good food.

Hot coffee (Stumptown!).

Cuddle cats that chirp at you.

The line of the clouds beckoning me on, pulling my heart up and forward as it pulls my eyes, feet splayed on pedals, rollicking past the taco truck at high velocity, the tarnished Talk of the Town sign blinking out in burnt neon, the royal indigo and blushed peach sky, the moon.

La bella luna.

I salute you.

Simple, elegant, there, not needing explanation or definition.

Just there.





You Never Know

July 19, 2013

Who could be reading this blog.

Or who follows this blog.

I don’t.

Except, every once in a while someone I know will say, “I read your blog!”

Or, “I know that already, I read that on your blog,” and I can get a little prickly pearish.

I have a friend who once asked, “what didn’t you write about,” in regards to my time in Paris.

Smart man.

There were indeed things I did not write about.

Right about now I am missing the upcoming reading for The Bastille.

I got an e-mail from the editor in regards to how they were doing the reading, who will be there, and did I have last-minute thoughts about going.

Well, yeah, I would love to be there, you know, in Paris, reading a short story that I wrote, inspired by a trip on the Metro (although having absolutely nothing to tie the Metro to the story), out loud, outside, on the terrace to the Shakespeare & Company store.

Sounds like something out of a movie, you know.

Speaking of short stories, flattered today, to be asked to read a friend’s short.

It was good.

Not great, but good, and the potential for great was there.

I have to say, aside from getting text messages from folks thanking me for what I wrote, people asking me to read there work and critique it is also flattering.

I feel like I have something to offer.

And the ease of doing it is sort of astounding.

I chalk it up to reading a lot.

Writing a lot.

And thinking about writing a lot.

I have way with words, have I.


The majority of folks that follow my blog are not folks I know, but when I get personal responses from my friends and community it is validating and makes me feel that every blog is worth while, that no matter what I think I am getting somewhere with this exercise.

It is also a way to keep tabs on me.

Who knows I am in East Oakland?

You do!

Who know when I have down time?

You do!

Speaking of down time, that dreaded commodity, I put it out to facecrack that I had down time and I will see if anything shakes out from that.  Whether work, recreation, or dating.

Not that I have ever gotten a date on facecrack.

There was a guy once, but I told him he had to actually ask me out, not just message me about having coffee.

That was a long time ago, though, I haven’t really gone on a date in a while.

Well, the mister, but he’s busy, or just not all that into me, despite the contradictory statements he has spoken, “I am attracted to you,” sounds like you’re attracted to me.

But the hasn’t sent a message, called, or asked on date in three weeks, says something entirely different.

Not that dating is going to fix me or make me different, better, or good.

I am just tossing out ideas to the Universe as to what I should fill my schedule with.

I thought about riding my bicycle out to Ocean Beach and to the nanny gig in Cole Valley, to see how long my commute would be.


Submitting some more work.

Bugging my friend who has the manuscript to sit down and talk with me about it.


I am going to be in the city tomorrow for nanny gig, but it is only three hours, 11a.m. to 2p.m. and I will have the afternoon until 6p.m. to wander around.

I shall meander to a book store or two.

I am assuming that by the time my two weeks roll around I will have actually filled them full.  And as though to prepare for the two weeks they will be gone, I do have a fuller nanny week then normal next week.

I bet the two weeks of quiet will be nice.

I am not cringing as much at the thought as I was.

I could take out my camera and do some down and dirty photographs of the ship yards.

I have been thinking about that for a few minutes now.

Every time I go on the BART and it passes over the freeways and the penned up shipping container yards, I see photographs.  I don’t relish the idea of riding my bicycle through the neighborhoods, but I do the thought of what photographs I could take.

I want to take portraits of the prostitutes I see on International too, but I don’t think my camera would be welcomed.

There was a triumvirate of girls this evening working 18th and International, including one girl who had square cleavage.

I did a double take as I was riding my bicycle by and realized that she did not have pointy cleavage, rather that there were phones stuck in the cups of her bra.

I could also ride over to Alameda, I know from having ridden over there many years ago, that there are some very pretty avenues and areas.  It feels quite different from the East Oakland hood I am sequestered in.

I could see the movie Fruitvale.

I mean, I use the Fruitvale BART all the time, it would be interesting to see how the movie is.  I may have some direct experience with the local flora and fauna.

So many things to do.

I am sure my calendar will get booked up and until then, the best thing I can do is just focus on the next action in front of me and that looks like a fresh cup of tea.

And some proofreading.

Cheeky Bastards

July 9, 2013

You know you are in a good place emotionally, spiritually, and mentally when a car load of little thugs rolls up on you and you get your ass slapped while bicycling down International Avenue.

I was pedaling my ass off, but not in that kind of way.

I had gotten a roll by, and I do believe it was from the same car with a voice extolling my beauty and sexiness and blah, blah, blah, just get me through the next light and I am cool, ignore it, it will go away.

They usually do.

These little fuckers though, they must have went around the block and circled back, right past where El Gordo Taco truck plies its trade-off of High Street and International.

I was deep in thought, just a few blocks from the turn off to Graceland, messenger bag full of groceries from a quick pit stop to the Whole Foods in Oakland by Lake Merrit, planning out my strategy of attack for tomorrow’s nanny gig.

I have three babies tomorrow.


And every one of them is going to need a place to nap.

Normally one of the babies, my little elf girl, is brought over after nap time, but not tomorrow, nope, she’s getting a drop off two hours earlier than I normally have her.

If you don’t hear from me until after tomorrow night at 6 pm assume I am drowning in babies.

Juggling two is challenging, having three is a total body work out.

And my body must be looking good, despite my brain trying to tell me the opposite.

In no particular order I was whistled at, hollered at, barked at (yes, I mean does that even count as a cat call?) I was called beautiful from the side walks, street corners, bus stops, and out of car windows.

And yes, my ass was slapped.

I mean I cannot even be mad about it.

Fact is, I have pondered doing the same thing to other people before.

When Calvin and I were in a hanging out a lot phase of our friendship before he opened the salon up, we went through a huge spate of scooter riding.

He was crazy on that scooter, he probably still is, weaving in and out, ducking into the bike lane, squeezing between cars, I was always praying not to fall off or pee my pants.

I was also high on the exhilaration of speed and adrenalin.

I had often joked about smacking somebody on the ass, some hipster with a kryptonite hanging off his skinny ass, I never did, but man it was tempting.

And I have an ass, I have a bicycle bum, I ride my bike a lot and when I am not riding it I am walking.

Not having a car helps develop leg muscles, dontcha know.

The little hellions at least beeped at me.

I heard the car coming and it honked and I thought I was getting honked at for taking up too much of the lane.  In hindsight, I think they were giving me a warning, “here we come lady, watch your back.”

I could feel the car getting close, a lot closer than I felt comfortable with, then…


“Fuck you!”

I shouted, and flipped them off, but I had a smile on my face, I could not help it, the rear window full of grinning faces all watching me and smiling and waving at me and whistling.

I normally would not put up with it, but the fucking pure audacity made me smile, and yes, I do think it’s funny.

I can’t even get up a good head of steam over it.

I guess that means I am in a pretty good mood.

And I am.

I have been abstinent in my food, I have been working, I got a mani/pedi yesterday as my treat after the long week of being in San Francisco, I am absolutely loving my hair, it’s not been this long in years, and yeah, it’s a simple thing, but I do feel that there have been times when I was mistaken for being a little light in the loafers with the faux hawks and short shaved hair styles.

I am all woman and ready to be dating some men.

Not, perhaps the Buick full of boys that blew past me on International, but hey, you know, today I will take it as a compliment, I looked good, I look good.

I don’t feel like the kids were being malicious, just, well kids, out cruising.

If they had been older I might have gotten freaked out.

Then again, I don’t believe an older set of men, would have done that.

I am not, however, condoning getting slapped on the ass again in my commute.

Once was enough.

Good enough for a story, I don’t need to build a chapter around it.

In other things bicycle, I got the log in information to order through the bike shops distributor, I am aching to get my paws in there and get the few things I want to get for my playa bike ordered and taken care of.

Hmm, Burning Man, may be the only other place I would accept a spanking on my bicycle while riding it.

Be that as it may, I am itchy to go flit through the website.

I have a budget and I should be able to adhere nicely to it since I am ordering at cost and not retail.


Aside from that not much else to report.

Lots of nannying this week and just taking the next steps in front of me.

And doing it while looking hella sassy.

It has been confirmed.


More is Revealed

June 9, 2013

“Sounds like you are depriving yourself”.

She said to me over iced coffees in the Castro.

I was once again in the city, the city that beckons me back and back and back some more.

Come home to me, Carmen, she seems to whisper on soft cat paw feet swathed in fog.


I am giving it my best and it does seem to be heading that way, does it not.

I love me some Graceland, I do, I am here, at the moment, my room-mate and friend watching Eddie Izzard on the telly and the cats meowing and the teapot steaming and the squeal of tires doing side shows off in the distance.

Riding home tonight was an intense experience.

A lot of cops.

A lot of drag racing happening around me, not directly on International Ave, but quite close, I felt rabid with speed on my bicycle, I just wanted to get home, get off the streets, get inside.

Soon, though, I will be back into the city.

I have some choices, I have some options, and I had another put in front of me today.

A place that may work better for me than the other that has been offered to me.

Both would require some waiting, but not too much, just a tiny bit, just until, oh say, after I get back from Burning Man.  This seems like the thematic here.  I am staying in East Oakland until I get back from the playa.

This lovely home is a transition place for me.

My friend who I had lunch with today has a place out by the ocean that she was in the process of purchasing when I was just landing in Paris.  It has an in-law and it is in my price range.  I said yes, let’s look into it.  It seems more viable a space for me than the other room that was also offered to me in the Bayview.

I have to repeat, I have options, how nice is that?

I like this idea though, my own place, my own little kitchen, my own little bathroom, a newly remodeled place, out by the beach.

You know my favorite smell in the whole world is driftwood fire smoke.


I could go out to the beach and get myself a bonfire every weekend.

Every weekend.

It is still being worked on and it won’t be ready until oh, around the time I get back from Burning Man.  I said yes.

Yes, I said yes to my other friend too.

I can say yes and then I can say yes to something else and I can see what would work best for me and take care of myself rather than taking care of the other person.

I can change my mind too.

“Yeah, so I went vegan,” I said today, “and I feel like that restriction has led to me getting a little wonky in my head around my food,” I explained.

And it has.

I don’t want to admit it, but yeah, I have been indulging in some popcorn.

I have not eaten sugar and I have not eaten flour, but I have been getting some popcorn on.


I have been checking out with it.

Munch, munch, munch, don’t think, don’t feel, don’t stress.

I don’t want to feel is generally what is happening.

I have gone vegan a number of times and each time it is about me controlling my food and restricting myself and depriving myself.

I am vegan no longer.


I had me some meat tonight.

Damn it was good.

Wild Salmon at Local Eatery on 24th street.

I had a dinner date.

And it was lovely.

I like him.


And I explained about having gone vegan while in Paris and he said, “sounds like you were trying to control the fear by focusing all your energy on depriving yourself.”

Fuck me.


He eyed the plate in front of me.

“Oh, don’t worry,” I said with a laugh, “I am vegan no more as of this minute.”

And I had a nibble.

It was delicious.

I had another nibble and I felt relief.

I felt like, oh yeah, I get to do this.

I am not going to over indulge and I am not going to be eating any sugar and any flour, that is enough restricting for me, besides, I have some real serious issues around sugar.

I have never, however, over indulged on salmon.

I have on sugar cookies.

I could have over indulged in him, I caught, every once in a while, a whiff, a soft sugar-coated, brown butter, ginger spice, whiff of him and wanted to cuddle up under his arm.

I restrained from that.

We are both in a precarious place.

Neither here nor there.

His living situation and my living situation are both wonky.

But we agreed that we were both attracted to each other.

“Oh, I’m not attracted to her at all,” he said, in regards to a woman who moved to the city after I moved to Paris who wants very much to be with him.

“I’m attracted to you,” he finished and smiled over the coffees on the table at Ritual.

“Good, I feel the same,” I smiled back.

And I will leave it at that.

There was no kiss, just a sweet hug, a lovely meal, some good catching up, and some stories of the time since we last hung out.

He is house sitting and I will be soon house sitting.

He is looking for his own place.

I am looking for my own space.

We both are transitioning and it was good to acknowledge it and I did not feel pressured to make some declaration of intent or desire, I know we’ll see each other again, and I know when I least expected he will lean in and kiss me.

I see it, just there, beyond the horizon of Graceland.

Perhaps on the beach in front of a bonfire.

Perhaps on a hill swathed in fog.

More will be revealed and I am content to let it happen.

And while more is being revealed I will only deprive myself of being mean to myself.

That is the only restriction I put upon myself.

No more meanness.

Some Time You Just Do What You

June 7, 2013

Don’t want to do.

You stay late when you really, really, really want to go to a movie with friends.

You roll past the place that you could have been to at 7pm if you weren’t already late and realizing that you are ten minutes past time but can get to the 7:30pm place, you go.

Even when you don’t fucking want to.

I had a case of the fuck its in a bad way.

Not sure why.

There’s nothing wrong.

I just paid my phone bill.

That’s a cool thing.

I got to go to work this morning and I got paid for the work I did and I get to go to San Francisco and work tomorrow and see friends.

I just wanted to come home, make a bowl of popcorn and hide under the covers.

I have no idea why.

I am in a much better mood now and things are fine and sometimes it just takes a minute to sit down and open the lap top and see that I am doing great.

I mean, really, I don’t have details to sweat.

I have work, I have people asking me to cover shifts for them or pick up extras.

I am going to house sit for one of the families I work for next week, which is nice as I would lose a bit of income with them being gone for eleven days and I had a family, Burning Man friends, from Austin, coming into town for a wedding and they want to have me watch their son.

Over night.

Two nights in a row.

And voila, I have a place to do so and I have effectively made up all the income that would be lost to an eleven day absence of the other family.

I don’t know exactly what to charge the family I am house sitting for and I don’t know what to charge the family that wants me to watch their son over night for two days.

These are the “worst” of my problems.

Not knowing does make me bat shit crazy.

But I not know all the fucking time.

Which may explain some stuff.

I have also been chewing on an idea that a friend of mine suggested.

Change the name of the character in my memoir.

I got a name immediately and that was like a sign.

Then I realized I could re-write a few things that always bugged me about the story line, things and incidents that despite happening exactly as I wrote them don’t mesh well with the basic story.

I also thought maybe this could be a way to give it more punch.

Who knows.

I am attached to the damn thing as it stands and I don’t know if I can do that.

But why not try?

I have already thought about scrapping the damn thing anyhow and saying fuck it to that as well, like just give up the idea that it is going to get published.

I am jumping to conclusions before I need to.

I will wait for my friend to finish reading it and see what suggestions he has and let it go.

I haven’t finished the fucking book in years, what’s another few weeks of letting it stew?

Ah, I am still irritable.

Again, not sure why.

Feelings, oh, feelings.

It’s like I am dancing around something just outside of my peripheral vision.

I suppose I could be gentle with myself, kind to myself, patient with myself, it’s only been five weeks since I have gotten back from Paris.

Five weeks of new families, new baby routines, new jobs, new places to live, new people to live with, new commuting routes, new weather, new, new, new.

Despite knowing in my head that the only thing that stays the same is nothing, that change is always happening, and that I need to be flexible, I can still get my pants in a bunch when I don’t get the routine I want, when I want, how I want.

I am also seeing that I need to be definitive with all the families I work for.  I have to ask for what I need and make it known.

Which reminds me, I need to get myself re-certified in child/infant CPR and first aid.  My current certification expires July 27th.  I want to be re-upped before I go to the playa.

One thing too, that I need to have the families, all the families, get is a first aid kit.

The little one year old boy that I do a ocassional share with my regular Thursday girl, is a complete dare-devil.  He knows no boundaries and wants to crawl, climb, and clamber up anything he can.

He also wants to stand on top of chairs and despite repeated sequestering from just such an act I walk around the corner after scooping the little girl up from the compost bin, to him doing exactly that.

He wobbled and I felt my heart leap into my throat.

It’s not a far fall, he was standing on top of a child’s chair, but still, any little child falling makes me nauseous.  And who wants to explain to the parent that you just weren’t paying attention.  Which is impossible to do 100% of the time.

I can get damn close.

But sometimes you have to leave the room.

It’s either that or you hole up in one place and they can still take a tumble.

Accidents happen, I just like to be prepared for them.

Makes me feel better.

The little girl throwing me a kiss good-bye tonight also makes me feel better.

Not getting hit by the speeding pick up truck on International as I was bicycling back makes me feel better.

Not turning a trick on the corner by the First International Church of Christ helps too.

Not smoking crack is an awesome thing, especially at eleven in the morning on a clear sunny day when there are better things to do instead of fish for crumbs in the pavement.

I have smelled a lot of crack burning in the streets and I am always grateful that today I don’t have to do that.

Instead I get to suck it up and take the opposite directions my heads tells me to do.

I did not isolate tonight.

I did not say fuck it.

I did the next action in front of me and I ran into happy.

That is what it is all about.


In case you were wondering.

%d bloggers like this: