Posts Tagged ‘Legion of Honor’

Inbound to Richmond District

May 4, 2015

You got to love NextBus.

I don’t often ride the MUNI trains or the bus, but when I do, this is the best app ever.

EVER.

I can sit in my house, noodle around, and when I have about three minutes, maybe four, if I’m feeling anxious, walk out the door, walk to the end of the block, and voila!

Bus arriving.

So nice.

Remember when you just sat and waited?

Forever.

It would say bus every ten to fifteen minutes in the schedule, but it was 49 minutes later and you’ve seen 18 buses headed the other direction and yet, here you are, alone, cold, shivering in the fog, waiting for the fucking bus to come.

Not waiting for Godot.

No never.

Waiting for the 22.

Or the infamous 24.

Or the 33.

Oh how I have waited for the buses.

Today, I just scrolled my finger on my phone, popped open the app and saw when the next one was coming and even better.

The app also has the time that the bus behind it is coming.

Brilliant.

Therefore allowing me time to do what ever I need to do at the house before leaving the house.

I got up early and got my errands, chores, and laundry on.

I still got a good night’s sleep, just a touch over eight hours, and I took a friend’s suggestion and silenced my phone last night.

I will forget and be pinged awake at all hours of the night, texts from my sister in Florida, which is three, no, four hours ahead, at 6:30 a.m.; messages from friends, Twitter alerts, Facebook messages, all manner of social media pings and beeps and boops.

Plus, of course the occasional text and what have you.

It’s nice on one hand to be in the mix.

But sometimes I don’t want to know who has like my Instagram feed.

I want to sleep.

It is with that in mind that I also do not look at my phone, I am not always successful, or respond to messages until after I have done my morning routine.

I can’t flip on my phone and lie in bed and scroll the internet universe.

I will be a grumpy toad before even having tossed aside the sheets.

I love my world, I love my friends, I love, love, love that I am in contact with so many of them through so many different places.

Case in point: having a conversation on the ride back from North Berkeley with my friend about not having a ticket, yet, to Burning Man, this conversation happened about oh, 24 hours ago, slightly less.  Fast forward to a few minutes ago when I saw a post on a private Facebook page for a group I belong to for a camp at Burning Man that I have dear friends camping at.  The post featured a link to another post saying, hey friends, I have two tickets, who wants them?

I see lots of people want them.

Lots.

However, I look closer, oh!!

It’s my good friend from my first year at the burn when I camped with Camp Stella and he gave me my first playa name: Ophelia and has a photo of me hanging in his office from the dust storm I fell asleep in (I got covered in dust, head to toe, had my hands crossed over my chest and was wearing a tutu, face mask, bandana, and goggles, I looked dead).

I have to hook my friends up!

I message both, get a text from both, exchange phone numbers and they just got off the phone with each other and my friend who didn’t have a ticket.

Well.

Now he does!

Fabulous.

It can happen like that.

Sometimes, though, I do need to slow down, take it easy, turn off the technology and rest.

It helps me get clear with the things I do need to do and a lot of that has to do with taking extremely good care of myself.

Laundry, grocery shopping, cooking, composting, taking out the trash, meeting with the ladies and doing the deal.

I had two ladies back to back from noon to 2p.m.

But before that.

I did all of those things above.

Plus my own writing and having a nice breakfast (hot oatmeal with diced pear and blueberries, cinnamon, nutmeg, sea salt, raw cocoa, one organic hard-boiled egg, lots of coffee w/unsweetened vanilla almond milk) of my own.

Then later after my last lady bug had left.

I got to have lunch from what I had cooked earlier, dinner too, and I had time to do a field trip.

So.

I opened my NextBus app and saw when the 18 was heading my way.

Richmond bound.

Legion of Honor.

That’s right.

I finally got myself in to see the Brooklyn Museum’s Costume Collection: High Style.

Oh my.

It was so good.

I got all sorts of art high.

House of Worth, Roger Worth evening dresses.

Edward Molyneux evening dresses.

Vionnet.

Givenchy.

Dior.

Yves St. Laurent.

Charles James and the muslims for his ball gowns, breath-taking.

Steven Arpad, for Delman, Inc evening shoes.

Elsa Schiaparelli butterfly day dress and parasol.

I’ll take two please!

Oh fashion, how I do love you.

Plus, you know, the normal galleries with their Monet’s and Pissarro’s, the Rodin sculptures everywhere, the Renoir’s and Manet’s (I like the Impressionists a bit you could say), it was just scrumptious.

The museum was a bit busy, there was also a concert happening–an organ concert by David Hegarty–which I thought about staying for, but it was standing room only and it felt nicer to just wander through the galleries with the sound of the Skinner Organ drifting around me.

I’m ever so grateful for all the tech that this world has, I mean, I am writing a blog and posting it online and sending it out into the inter webs, but I am also a Mensch for the classic, time-worn, much beloved wander through a museum, sit on a bench and listen to an organ concert, admire art, slow and delicious, taking the bus and not riding my bike willy nilly though the park and over the hills.

I believe this is what’s called balance.

Serenity.

It’s a nice place to be in my life.

More please.

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The Good News

April 4, 2015

I’m using my new laptop!

Man, she is sexy, sexy, sexy.

The bad news, I don’t know how the hell to access my files from my other computer.

They supposedly transferred, but I can’t find anything.  My iPhone is linked up via the Cloud, but not my old MacBook.

Although, according to the diagnostics when I tried to do the transfer again, it’s all here, somewhere on the new MacBook.

Ugh.

I was really hoping that this would be a nice smooth transfer.

I would turn it on and poof.

All things my way.

I really wanted to be mad, I mean, fuck me, I paid $1200 for this new gadget, let’s have it working like a pro.

I can say this much, it feels good, I think I am going to be typing faster on this machine than on my other one, I don’t have to hit the keys quite as hard to have a successful key strike.

My fingers feel like they are sort of floating over the keys.

That is lovely.

So too was opening my box of Mac last night when I got home from my evening out.

Aside, screw you Good Friday, you totally threw a monkey wrench in my evening, I had plans, and they didn’t include mulling around Church and Market for an hour after work only to find out that it is a church holiday.

I would have known that last week, but I didn’t go to my usually spot as I was at the doctor’s office.

ARGH.

Then to come home and see that my computer had finally transferred everything, but that it hadn’t, well, I was just a tiny bit miffed.

Miffed I tell you.

In tears of frustration.

Annoyed.

Still am.

But, as some one as told me before, white girl problems.

Starbucks doesn’t carry my favorite tea anymore.

White Girl Problems.

My hair dresser’s new assistant lost my appointment and I had to re-book.

White Girl Problems.

My new laptop isn’t working the way I think it should.

White Girl Problems.

I live in San Francisco and can’t get a date to save my life.

White Girl Problems.

Maybe I should re-title my blog.

Ah.

Friday.

At least it’s Friday.

End of the week and I know that everything is going to be just fine.

I mean, I may have to take my new laptop down to the Genius Bar tomorrow and see where my mysterious files are hiding.

Hell, I probably don’t even have to go to the Genius Bar, I paid for 3 years of Applecare, I can just make a phone call tomorrow and get some help, I’m sure it’s something I can be directed to do over the phone.  No need to go downtown if I can avoid it.

Mostly I want my photographs, over 10,000 to be assessable to me as well as my iTunes, I mean I have a lot of music on my old computer, plus some other applications that I like to use like Word for Mac.  I don’t care for the iWork’s that are all ready a part of my package.

This is a tidy little thing, I have to say.

I am loving how this feels to type on.

It reminds me of when I splurge and buy myself Clair Fontaine notebooks, the creamy texture of the paper, the way the ink flows from my pen onto the paper.

I suspect that if I walk away and give things a little time to suss themselves out, they will.

I may need fresh eyes to see what the issue is.

Or that there really is no issue.

Or that my vintage, antique, old as the hills laptop has some quirky thing going on with it.

Who knows.

If I lose all the things on my old laptop I’m also not too worried, I have it all backed up on Crash Plan.

I just had a thought, who is this woman?

It’s nice to be a part of the technology age.

Sometimes I find it a challenge, I over think things and make them too complicated, when they are spelled out right in front of my face, but that’s just who I am.

That I get to live in San Francisco, still, I know so many people who have moved and become Oaklandish, good on you, get your house, cheap rent, Lake Merrit Farmer’s Market on.  I’m not jealous, I’m not, though I miss faces that I used to see on the daily in the hood; that I get to live in San Francisco, is such a deal for me.

It’s my home.

I can’t imagine living anywhere else.

I don’t want to live anywhere else.

I want to keep riding my bicycle, or my scooter, through the park and see the full moon rise over my left shoulder as I head down to the sea.

Tonight an owl flew across my path.

My first owl.

For the superstitious an owl crossing your path means that someone you know is going to die.

However, an owl is also a symbol of intuition and wisdom.

Trust my gut.

I did feel wonder when I saw it.

And I did feel a touch spooked.

The white underbelly, the pip squeak of its cry as it was hunting.

It was a Great Horned and it was not hooting to hoot, but screaming to scare its prey.

There is a difference.

Like the noise a hawk makes to startle its dinner.

It was an amazing thing to see, regardless of the superstitious nelly girl on her bicycle who’s first thought is, who do I know that’s going to die?

Because that’s where my brain goes.

However, I like the idea of trusting my intuition better.

I listen pretty well to my gut.

Things are changing and I have had a struggle or two, internally, with opening up my weekends so that I have more time, more time in my neighborhood and more time at night, to socialize, to move about to change my routine.

But I find that I am yearning for the old scene, even when it didn’t fulfill and was such a hassle for me to get around to.

Realizing this was helpful and I checked in with my person around it today when I was at the park with the boys.

And the best thing, the knowing that I can have the feelings and not act on them.

So maybe tomorrow I need to do some nice things for me, I was thinking I could explore the Haight a little, go play some pinball at Free Gold Watch after doing my deal in the morning at 7th and Irving and my coffee and reading afterward at Tart To Tart.

Or perhaps a bus ride out to the Legion of Honor and as stroll through the exhibit–The Brooklyn Museum Costume Collection is there and I like me some fashion.  I could even do a double dip and head over to the DeYoung afterward, it’s been awhile since I have roamed around the galleries there too.

Oh.

The bad news.

I forgot.

Because like “white girl problems.”

I don’t have any bad news.

Just new things to work on and learn from.

And with that I bid you adieu.

Signing off from my fabulous new MacBook Air.

xoxo

Hey You

September 11, 2014

Yeah you.

You look like you could use some vacation in your life.

I look over my shoulder, are you talking to me?

Yeah, kid, you, there, in the oversize bib’s, why don’t you go down to the Ferry Building and watch the sea gulls squabble over scraps and take in the Bay Bridge, it’s a nice day in San Francisco, you can even leave the second layer at home.

Alright.

This lady does not know what to do with the down time, so I pretend to play tourist.

Now.

I do it the savvy way.

Number one.

I pack my own lunch.

As much as I like lunching down at the Ferry Building, or any meal, really, I don’t like the price tag attached.

Way too much.

Especially since this time off was not planned and next week.

Yeah.

More unplanned time off.

“You could Task Rabbit yourself,” my friend suggested via text just a little while ago.

No.

I prefer to pre-emptively pay all my bills and be chill.

I was half expecting that the letter of resignation with the family I was just off in the desert with might end up with me not having any work next week, but I did not feel like I could have not given them the notice.

The grandma is in town and when grandma is in town, who needs a nanny?

I totally get it, and as I said partially thought that it may happen that way.

I feel better than if I had shown up for the three days of work that I would have been doing and then said at the end of it, oh and by the way, I’ll be working with a new family next week, so uh, good luck.

I did get a very nice invitation to go say goodbye to my charge and that will be arranged.

Besides, I need to drop off their house key and also pick up my playa bike.

I can’t imagine they will want it hanging out all dusty in their garage.

Actually, I am not so certain I want it hanging out all dusty in my housemate’s garage.

I am thinking of going and picking it up and donating it.

Possibly to the bike kitchen.

Possibly to the guys over on Shotwell and 21st–Pedal Revolution–the non-profit bike shop that teaches at risk kids how to do bicycle repair.

I can’t imagine keeping it right now.

I could use it next year.

If I go to Burning Man.

I might be having to start-up graduate school.

I might be on vacation with the family that just hired me.

Fingers crossed.

I will go in Friday and sign the last of the paperwork so that the insurance company can run the back ground check.

I really did think that I should not say anything to the family and hedge my bets and cover my ass and have work in case, but I did the principled thing, giving notice.

And I feel right with that.

I am grateful for all I received from the family, I really did get a lot.

And another grows up and I move forward.

I am really looking forward to the graduate school part of the equation.

“Aren’t you burnt out?” A friend asked me yesterday.

He was riding by on his bicycle during commuter hours home, oh, I cannot wait for that ride again (I haven’t gotten back on the bike, in fact, tomorrow I have a short gig in the NOPA and I will be taking MUNI again), and he stopped and squeezed me hard.

We haven’t seen each other, outside of facecrack, in years, but it was like old times.

He told me about his own child, now three and a half, and I think, yes, that was the last time I saw him, his wife was pregnant and he asked me some nanny questions, and how it is such a challenge to parent.

“I’m not,” I said, “but I can see it coming in a few years, more so, that my body is older and I am ready to do more with my experience.”

I told him about graduate school and child psychology and wow, big thumbs up.

In fact.

Big thumbs up from every single person I have spoken to about it.

It is really exciting to be going after something and being met with such widespread approval.

Usually if I get a wild hair up my ass about a career change I am met with some resistance or some thought-provoking suggestions.

All that’s happened this time is a complete affirmation of my idea.

It feels so on point it’s a tiny bit spooky.

But I am just going to go for it.

Until the next moves need to be made for the graduate school and for the new job I will relax and take it easy.

In the last two days I have played tourist–Legion of Honor yesterday and Ferry Building today–I shall continue in that vein for next week.

I do have work lined up tomorrow and Friday, then the talent show on Saturday.

Sunday coffee with a ladybug.

Monday tea with a ladybug.

In between?

The DeYoung?

Or the Cartoon Museum.

Maybe a game of bones with a friend of mine and some coffee somewhere in the city.

“Just give me a call,” he said to me tonight as I gathered the contents of my day of playing tourist–I know better than to eat or buy food at the Ferry Building (I got an iced coffee and ate my packed lunch on the pier overlooking the Bay), I walked to the Farmer’s Market at Civic Center and stocked up, “we’ll go out.”

Ah.

Ok.

Go out on his 36 foot Catalina sail boat.

“You just have to scoot over to Sausalito, that’s where I keep it docked, I take folks out all the time, don’t I,” he turned to a mutual friend.

“Ayup.”

Ok.

Then.

Another new experience to have.

Buttressed with the experience of knowing that when work is not at my fingertips I don’t need to freak out, maybe there’s something else I need to be doing.

Like sailing on the Bay.

Like playing tourist in one of the prettiest places on Earth.

I believe I can handle that for a few days.

Not too many.

A girl likes to have groceries and all.

But I can handle a few days off.

Who knows what marvelous mischief may happen.

Practice Makes Perfect

September 10, 2014

And makes for fun.

“What will make this most enjoyable for your audience,” she asked me yesterday on the phone as I divulged I would be performing in a benefit this weekend.

“What can you do to have the most fun?” She added as I paused.

“I need to have the pieces memorized,” I replied.

I do not have the pieces memorized.

I have seven minutes to get up on a stage and do three pieces of poetry and then sit my ass back down and let other people have their go.

“It’s the most forgiving audience you will ever perform for,” my friend said, who is going to be ending the show.

Now, I feel confident that he knows what he’s saying and he also, I feel, has a leg up on me, as he plays classical Flamenco guitar.

I am just reciting some poems I wrote.

I feel a touch inadequate if the truth is to be told.

Which where else am I going to speak the truth, than here?

But, I said I would help and when it was suggested to me that I volunteer to perform, I said I would.

The participants are drawn randomly and I actually believed I would have a good shot at not getting picked.

There, I’ll show you, I’ll take your suggestion, but won’t have to do anything about it.

Win, win.

Except.

I got the e-mail while I was at Burning Man that my name had been, in fact, randomly selected, and I was slated to perform in the talent show.

Oops.

I knew immediately that I had one piece I could do, I’ve performed it before, in slams and on stage with a dj accompanying me, and even in Paris at the Paris Open Mic at Le Chat Noir.

So, that’s one piece.

But the others, well, I know them well, but not memorized.

Between getting back from New York, resigning from one job, accepting another, and just getting my feet underneath me from the frenetic travel from one coast to another with a lot of dust thrown in the mix, I had pretty much not thought about the show.

Until today.

Eek.

I have to start memorizing these pieces.

I mean, part of me thought, still thinks, that I could get up there and just read them, but that seems, somehow, to be failing the audience.

I don’t think it will be as much fun as if I just get up there and go at the work with it memorized.

Which means I have two longish pieces I need to commit to memory.

Fortunately I have tomorrow off.

I had today off as well, but I decided to do a little “staycation” action and I took myself to the Legion of Honor Museum over in the Outer Richmond.

I hadn’t been to that particular museum in years, I mean, like six or even seven.

My preference is typically for the DeYoung or the MOMA, but I have been to the DeYoung in recent memory and the MOMA is still closed for renovations.

While I was meditating today, the Legion of Honor popped into my brain.

Ok.

I can do that.

I didn’t even have to go far.

Just half a block down to the 46th and Judah and I caught the 18 bus, which dead ends at the Legion of Honor.  Then a small ticket fee, $10, with a discount when I was asked if I had taken the bus and I replied I had, they knocked off $2 when I showed my transfer.

Not too bad.

$8 to see Rodin.

The Kiss.

The Thinker.

The Man with a Broken Nose.

To get up close and personal to smell the marble to walk around the sculptures.

The Legion of Honor has more Rodin sculptures than any other museum outside of the Rodin Museum in Paris.

Which I had the pleasure of going to when I was in Paris.

I wandered through the sculpture, although I am not the biggest fan of sculpture, it is a marvel to see the Rodin’s, one that captured my fancy for some time was a small collection of miniature studies of just right feet.

Unimaginable how much time and effort devoted to just studying that one body appendage.

The Mighty Hand also captured me for a time.

It’s just a hand, a large hand, anatomically correct, and the ferocity of it, the brute strength, the curl of the fingers reaching and holding and grasping, astounding.

I love me some art.

I am perpetually grateful for all the art I have gotten to see in my life time and the knowledge that I will continue to allow myself to see more.

And to make some myself.

Whether it is performing my small body of work, hopefully memorized by Saturday, or taking a few photographs here and there, or writing a blog piece, I get to be a part of the conversation.

In some small part.

And that connects me, a small thread, a link to others.

I am in the moment that the artist creates and witness to it.

When I see art I like, I get a body high.

And though it did not happen when I looked at the Rodin’s, the sculptures can captivate me, they do not, however, give me that big arty high, I did get it when I wandered into a wing I had accidentally skipped the first go through the museum.

I got it first from a painting from Gustave Courbet of a wave.

Then intense, and dreaming in front of a Degas, and then again a Monet.

Delicious art.

Feed my soul.

Fill me up.

I don’t know that what I do will fill another with that kind of awe a superanuated feeling, but I can try.

I don’t compare myself to these artists so much as acknowledge that art means an awful lot to me, that my life would be lacking without art.

Whether it is a street art mural that makes me stop or it’s the layout of Burning Man in a photograph taken high above the playa from the wing of a Cessna airplane.

I know it when I see it.

I feel it.

I become it.

I hope that I will translate just a tiny touch of that this weekend.

Until then.

More reciting.

More practice.

Not for perfection.

But for fun.

For you.

My audience.

May I in some small part be an artist.


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