Tuesday, October 31, 2006

terrible ladders

idle hands are the devil's plaything, and free time is certainly my number one enemy. That's not true, I am my number one enemy, but at least I am also my enemy's sidekick. Sidewalk. Whaaaatever.

It's closing in on 2 in the morning and I am hopelessly lost in wikipedia. Looking back thru my tabs on the browser there, I see that I started at Volkswagen Beetle and flew through to great depression, Timothy Leary, Charles Manson, the Weathermen, the Grateful Dead, project MK-ULTRA, I am not sure what started me with Volkswagon exactly BUT -- I was watching "curb your enthusiasm" (yes, I actually rented a video) and was looking up about the cast of that show, for the beginning.

As I get older I realize how stupid I am. I mean, I am not a stupid person, well not overall I don't think so - but there's just so much about the world I live in that I am terribly uninformed about. I look back with some disdain to my childhood, not that it wasn't happy but that it was just overly materialistic. I thank my parents for being very kind and loving and spoiling me bloody rotten, but at the same time I wish there were more times when they'd have shoved a book under my nose rather than let me batten down in front of the television. I can't dare to consider how many hours of my young life have been wasted away watching bullshit like "Family Ties" or "Growing Pains."

Ah, but such was the 1980s, and such is our culture, and so was the life of a suburban white jewish boy born to relatively conservative parents (well, they weren't hippies, that's for sure!) And my schooling, loathe of it though I was, not for the reasons that I am now. My public school curriculum was so much filler bullshit, I mean it was nice to learn about electrons and dangling participles and gerunds and such, but short of the mathematics (also pretty weak) we were not taught so much to THINK. In fact, the only time that was evident to me was when I had an American History class (about the only history we got, honestly) and my 9th grade teacher Mr. O'Brien freaked out one day and yelled at us clueless sheep how spoonfed we all were.

It's hard to lash out at public school, because you get what you pay for, and really I was such a sheltered shut-in that it was good enough to keep me occupied in the hours when i wasn't at home glued to the Nintendo. College was an entirely different experience, natch, but it was valhalla by comparison (I was an art student) - all you had to do was draw lots of naked chicks, drink beer and rock out. In consideration of it all, it worked out pretty well - I may be fuckinuts but i have a roof over my head, and steady-ish work, and most people I seem to get along with (no one's handed my ass to me yet, well not lately).

But.. it's not.. enough. I get older, and I settle into my career and relationship, and then. then what? Work 5 days, then it's the weekend. take in a movie, or go out and sample the local flavor, or just get fucked up and dream away to a different reality.. or something. That's nice when it's novel, but is that what I must strive for? "Just keep working, save up money, so you can buy bigger things and nicer wallpaper, a faster car, bigger boobs for your wife" Uhmm.. and.. "Oh yeah, have some kids, and they can go through the next version of the reality which you've helped provide them" Well, screw that. that is definitely the biological plan, and I can't fault it for producing at least my own presence at this point to arirve at such a conclusion (and heretofore entire life leading up to now, of course) - but I'll be damned if I'd ever want someone to follow precisely in my footsteps, through the same system that spat me out. Selfishly, moreover, I don't care.. or is that unselfishly? If I did have any kids, they'd likely grow up kinda "normal" and never understand me anyway, cheerleading squad and preppy clothing and.. well,they'd probably know a lot more about wine and cheese than I do. God, they're boring the shit out of me already. I bet even the video games they would like would be mainstream and cliche.

Well, I get ahead of myself a bit, i guess. No, one thing is for sure, if I ever did have any kids, they would receive a hell of a bizarre educaton, that's for damn sure. Anyone who reads this blog with any degree of regularity can get a sense of the madness inside of me and the fact that I have a hard time shutting up about it, only to eat, poop or pass out, you think if you were my KID growing up around it that you'd have ANY KIND OF CHANCE OF NORMALCY!! "yeah but your wife won't let you scramble them too much..." Ha fat chance.. she'd be so exhausted of allthe parties involved and make for the exit door at any opportunity, believe you me.

Kids and wives, never ever hear me talk about such things, but hey I am just another person, the next phase of one's adult life has to pass through everyone's head sometime or other. It's so funny,when you are younger, you can't wait to get to that point "yeah I just want to be like everybody else, with my wife, 2 kids, dog, fireplace, SUV" Ohh boy, it sounds like a bonafide nightmare to me at this point. Of course any chick (or guy who's been there) who reads this thinks "ohhh, he'll move on, some girl will tame him.." I dunno. I think my circuit might be broken already. It's happened in the past, I have already gone far enough away from my programming. In some ways, I believe.

Anyway, back to the point that was on the tip of my mind earlier - there's so much more in the world that I am wising up to now, the veil of knowledge slowly lifts. It just makes me more twisted though, rather than merely "enlightened" and certainly not peaceful. I question my morals, my plans.. I want to escape this pattern which I have become super-locked into but long enough ago I realized I had to mess it up from within, rather than just toss it aside and start from scratch. It confounds me, as I reflect on the changes in my life and philosophy in the past years since I have moved out here and the things I have endured, become. The characters I have met, some who I have just pondered. And the more I dwell on it, the more frustrated I get "why does everyone so easily want to do the same shit, over and over and over?"

I guess it's not really that hard to understand. Not for me either.

Monday, October 30, 2006

keep lying to me, and i'll keep believing you

another monday that's not a monday.
my tooth feels funny but i am not sure if it is really different or if i am just being neurotic.
is halloween over with yet? can we get on with the more serious holidays please.
i was ready to send my ipod up the river, but it seems to be updating. For now.
i want to make a nice pretty corridor.
we went to walmart yesterday, it was frustrating and obnoxious and the spicy chicken fillet didn't do much to help things in my innards.
i have to put GYM tunes on my ipod; i've not been in awhile. 3 weeks I think? I don't even know anymore. Then I will come home and wash the dishes and empty the trash.

that is all.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

crap, on a stick

wow. i've worked with quite a lot of people in my time in this field. in these times when i am working on reviewing my portfolio, i tend to look some of my past coworkers up and see how they've ended up presenting themselves as well.

I know my website ain't exactly the bee's knee's, but.. wow.. most of the folks i have known who have websites up, they are... ugh.. not pretty to look at. mind you these folks are all self-proclaimed "artists," but their design skills leave something to be desired, to say the least. also, mind you, when people are working, they tend not to go out of their way to finely craft a website - also, a lot of these folks are older and from more "traditional" artistic backgrounds, and while their web-development skills may be lacking compared to mine, they certainly can run circles around me with their prowess in terms of more traditional media (when's the last time I, ahem, DREW something? Or painted?) I will go far enough to expect that most of them don't care about dabbling in Dreamweaver or fudging with HTML. Still, it's a little amazing. Anyway, for what it's worth, the younger folks generally seem more tech-savvy.

It's interesting to see what has happened to a few of these older fogies, in that more than a couple of them got into the field, like i said, after they were established doing "other kinds of art," again the more traditional media - and their skills in the 3D realm are not quite as pronounced. Also, what may have passed several years ago doesn't quite cut the mustard these days. I got my hands on a n older videogame system from a friend recently, and played with what was considered to be one of the biggest games in the filed of ten years ago (Tomb Raider) - 3D was a brand new thing, as were fully 3D cutscenes. And man, MAN.. the cutscenes were horrible, just horribly animated. Lazy, sloppy.. but still, only so many people could manipulate the software, so if you got a gig doing it, you didn't have to sweat it as much back then I suppose. Likewise with much of what passed for 3D modeling and texturing, just having it in there and moving around was enough, just the fact that it wasn't a flat 2D image shifting thru space anymore. As the years passed, people started to get a little spoiled and whine about things when they noticed that things didn't look quite so nice.

We're at a strange time now, as the art has to look better and better - technology is sort of tripping over itself a bit, as you can have either really NICE looking games in smaller levels, or kind-of nice looking ones that take place in enormous worlds. It's a trade off, and it's something i think that will possibly branch a little further, and the audience only sort-of notices. It is interesting how much more technically minded the audience has become, I'll say that.

I have found some high-res work that I did a while ago (a couple of years!) and it's funny to see, as really -- ALL the stuff i have done since has been quite the opposite. Color-stripped and supershrunk and budgeted and squeezed in. I have a hard time considering what I would be making now had I continued on the path I was going down. Not to say that it's bad what I have done instead, but it's certainly pushed me into a particular direction, and one that is only semi-useful for what I am looking towards for the future. At least my eye is intact and I can repurpose my skill set.. I believe so, anyway. Time, as always, will tell. On that note, rather than pushing it further and strapping down to work, I think I will take mind of the hour and head to my bed.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

repeat me repeat me repeat me to infinity

you know, i slept like 2 hours last night. and that started about 24 hrs ago. so maybe i should hit the hay. why aren't i tired?

highlights of the day:

-saw cody, saw MVG
-figured out how to enable my car alarm, thanks Phoned Mechanic
-cheated the fuzz out of a would-be Street Cleaning Parking Ticket. Take that, The Man!!
-didn't really spend any money except on gas (and blockbuster)
-played a bunch of video games, realized that i don't really like video games
-doritos with "the cheese sauce"
-made fun of may on the phone "i want some wa-ter!! I'm so hun-GRY!"
-served pizza and extra helpings of "garlic balls" by a guy who constantly reminded me of Hitler, but nice
-today i did not kill. tomorrow i will.
-no acceptions, but no rejections either!!
-my cut stung.

Monday, October 23, 2006

see net

another day and my mind is flying all over the place as usual. i went to bed probably around 12 hrs ago and woke up about 6 hrs after that.. running around, sending emails, getting things sorted. I borrowed an xbox 360 from my friend who's off on a reference trip on the left coast, got that hooked up ot the TV.. I will be suffocating zombies and choking OGs within a day or so. It's ironic I have worked on two 360 games (technically) and I've yet to actually fire up a home console of my own free will. Give me Dig Dug or Mappy instead, man. Anyway, it's important to familiarize myself first-hand with some of the relevant titles out there, cheers to dudes for hooking me up... if i ever say "cheers to dudes" again will someone kindly suffocate me, as if I was a zombie, as well?

Today my ipod has been skirting the brink of destruction, or however one would say. The thing's been on the fritz for some time, and just about now it's pretty much at the point of uselessness I have to say. I gotta dig up my receipt and ship it off to Heaven... Hopefully they can patch it up and get me back in satisfied working order shortly. I don't ask much fo this world.. some porn, some nachos, my ipod? Is that all too much to ask? You can have my clothes, my mathematical ability, my soft couch, my personality.. go on, it's all extraneous. At least take my belly. BTW, the fatass competition is officially over as far as I am concerned (no surprise there) and I am pleased to annonce I lost somewhere around 10 pounds since around early July, I think it was... give or take a pound, with no heavy slam to my lifestyle. I have been lagging in my upkeep since the last investiagtion, but I intend to keep hovering thereabouts (and lowering it according, rather.. getting into better shape). Good news that makes me feel happy.

Damn, Ipod, poor little shitty piece of plastic,why can't things just work like I want them to? Also I have ot return to the mechnic for the third time in a week's time, as they changed my battery but neglected to hook the alarm back up in the process. This guy is a wonderful mechanic but I am feeling a little put off by their sudden shoddiness.

Work-wise, I tightened all the screws with my website (hence getting to bed at 7am!) and officially sent out the first wave of job applications. I have stuff out locally at studios, 1 in NYC, 1 in SF, to whatever degree.. A couple of other places I am in vaggggggue talks with, again to much lower degree, but still of note. I read through my buddy's Shanghai blog and it definitely gave me some things to think about. I have had ups and downs with the notion, in fact a good part of last night I was thinking "yeah yeah, yeah, go for it, why not..!" But on further reflection today, I decided to put it further back on my mental shelf (helped a bit along there by a recruitment video I watched for the studio there). It seems cool, and bustling, and .. exotic, certainly a gateway to a truly different world.. but if it was a choice between Shanghai and New York for the short term, I'd overwhelmingly go with NYC. Again, the place seems like it could be a fascinating adventure, but my overall perspective is that it's still a new, wild place.. sort of ultra-futuristic in the way that "white people love!" whereas NYC is dingy, filthy, overriden with all manner of culture, slipping and sliding all over itself. Messy, rough, raw, but all sort of figured-out with itself. Not very welcoming to outsiders, but not in the way that you could easily get mauled by random shit if you're not careful (no sharks or killer bees in NYC.. just bullets and dope fiends and crack whores maybe). But hey we got that stuff here in Los Angeles anyway, so I am used to all of that. Yippee!!

Yeah well, it's all irrelevant as it's not like I've got any kind of offers on the table at this point. It's just nice to get a leg up, in my head (is there something to that?) and try to at least make some, if only vague, substantial decisions about what I'd like to do next with my life. I wish I knew of some firm opportunities in London.. I think that may be neck-and-neck with NYC, in my mind..

Meanwhile, I have an interview 9am tomorrow on the West Side for some contract work. Maybe that will wipe everything out. Hmm... Watch this space.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

count your goddamned chickens

Last night was Mong's birthday. Highlights are as follows.
Andy (to me) "I was trying to ask what you wanted for a drink, but you gave me a lapdance"
Jim's too-soft hug. This is a guy who I thought would someday through me off a roof. He still may.
Soggy pizza was still welcome to my palate. Tasty too.
Me (to Aaron) :"If you were to buy a present of booze, for your wife, what would it be?"
Bradlee (paraphrasing) "I am not puking anymore!"
Jeff telling me to enjoy my sobriety as a different kind of drug.
Overheard: "I am not used to playing chess in real life - it's so much easier for me to understand when it's on a computer screen!"
---and so on, and so forth---

I think this is the beginning of my third week out of work. It's alittle hard to mark time, as I've said, but that seems to feel right (wrong but right). If it helps, I am doing laundry, and my sink is disarmingly void of dirty dishes. Go me! So, same as usual, I have been living in my website, pulling and tweaking and finagling. I have to say, all things considered, I am really happy with how it's all come out. I have a little more tweaking with it to go (as I usually say) but it's within sight. I feel like "stop writing this and go fix it NOW!" But it can chill out for a couple of minutes. Job-wise... I have applied for 2 jobs, thus far. One is in Leeds, Scotland, for the GTA team (that'd be a rocking job, which would probably be crazy and weird as hell, but it'd be stellar for my resume at least). I dunno anything about scotland, except like.. Trainspotting, so if anyone has some good heroin stories to share then I am all ears mates. As well I have sent an application to a local "mystery job" which has divulged next to nothing about their identity or project, other than the usual vaporous promises "we are made up of industry vets, but we are DIFFERENT from all the others..." Yeah, well, we will see. I will hear them out at least, so far they have said they liked my resume, I expect we'll have more words over the course of the coming week. I have a few local places to send out to as well, maybe like 5 or six other places off the top of my head which I am actually interested in talking to right now.

I sent out two resumes to studios in Japan, becuase.. well, just for the hell of it (I visited Tokyo and Osaka a few years ago, and I loved the cities.. the style was immensely intriguing to me, plus honestly it's the birthplace of the modern videogame! Mecca!) I expect no response from such inquiries, but hey why the heck not apply, maybe someone over there wants to flavor up their product a little. Who knows. Well, my lack of Japanese Language doesn't help matters at all, so no worries there.

I called my friend who is working in NYC today and we had a lot to talk about. I didn't get any bright glowing reassurances from him as far as "there's a job waiting here for you NOW!" but he did share much important information with me about the story out there, the majority of which wasn't dampening to my desire to head out that way. As with anything else, it's just talk right now.. it is important for me to be examining these options at this moment though.

I have another friend who, along with his wife, is sort of the "blueprint" for working, traveling for another job, working at another new place, relocatiing again, etc. Okay, I know a few people who have done this to different capacities, but this fella definitely fits the profile f what I am feeling like right now in this particular regard. He recently came off a jaunt to shanghai for a good chunk of time (I believe it was just shy of a year) and while that is an option as well, an enticing one no less, I am doing some research to see what it's all about before I start getting my fingers into that just yet. Anytime one considers moving to a different culture,with different language/etc there's quite a bit of consideration that must be made - and while it is exciting, it must also be dealt with rather carefully. Headfirst is good in some cases, but at this stage in the game for me I want to be rather particular with how and where I take my next critical steps.

I have a friend in SF where they are also hiring (Lucasarts) - ehhh yes, the dream job of many nerds, I know, I know. To be honest, everyone loooOOOooves SF all the damn time and while I've been there a couple of times (brief moments) and could appreciate it, I didn't really get a huge strong sense that it was "my" kind of city right off the bat. It would be a cool notch to have on the headboard, no doubt, and I would certainly love to see what is on order up there job-wise. Definitely quite an active scene in my industry up there, maybe less so than down here in socal, but still quite happening, to be honest. In spite of it all, more affordable than NYC as well, and closer to my west-coast base of operations, socially.

And of course, the whole staying-in-Hollywood thing. Yes, okay, so I have gone over this argument no les than 45 times in the past week in this journal, but what's a 46th? Well, it may sound tiresomely repetitive, but it's no less valid now. If anything it just keeps eating at my thoughts more and more, as things grow from fantasy into actual possible impending reality. Yeah, I have a lot of really good friends here. I have a girlfriend here. I have a lot of seriously important career hookups over here. Less importantly (but still valid) I have an apatment, I mean a GOOD fucking apartment the likes of which you have to stab your mother in the larynx to acquire, or thereabouts... I have my "stuff," I have my car of nearly 10 years which is still running really well (if i move to NYC or outta the country, that thing's gonna be gone, man).

Hollywood is a no-brainer for my career, if I stay here I WILL get my success guaranteed, so long as I keep working and pushing as I do, and don't mess it up terribly somehow.. and I know this. And I am in such a great position already with lots of the factors in my life already worked out, that it's just sort of "sit back in life and watch it go by." That's sort of what was nice with that last job I had, and why it's such a tragedy to be no longer in my life, it was truly a meal ticket, and a fun and exciting one in a lot of ways. I still get to reap some notable rewards off of it, I suppose.. But yeah the other side of the coin. There's a B-I-G world around us, one which is getting smaller to me, and I want to uncover more of it. I want to do it smartly though. I have detailed many of my rough options above.. I think, inthe course of the next week (or two weeks, or so) that my options will only increase as I start throwing my resume around a little more.


I need a vacation. Like I was sayin'...

Anyway, I wanna finish reading about Shanghai, and then do those last tweaks to my website. And so it goes, and so it goes, and it went, and now it's just gone.

Friday, October 20, 2006

lies your cheater told me

(copied from myspace blog - same content. get used to it!)

what's up octopi, another week has whizzed by? whazzis?

time has done a good job of standing still for me recently. my frame of reference is hosed and so when i look at the date, it feels like a useless jumble of numbers...

i have been superbusy, working on my portfolio was a little longer than i would've expected, but to do such things you've gotta do them right, or just not at all. Of note is the fact that we put out a game last year but i hadn't taken any screen grabs of it when i had the opportunity (well, who know.. lousy excuse!) and that what i'd culled from the internet was slightly better than useless, for the most part. Snapping pics fromthe television is usually a no-no, if at all possible, so i figured i could get the game running on my PC and just rip some screens myself. Sounds easy enough, but when you haven't ripped images from a PC game since, uh, 4 tony hawk games ago (or so) then that might lead you to understand I am a little inexperienced with such things. Inexperienced yes, but more determined anyway, and so a couple of days of fiddling have got me a useable enough solution and I can be happy with that. So, yeah. Long story short, business as usual, and i need not whine about it too much.

lots on my mind (when's there not?) - my health has been a little worse for wear the past few days, combination of ignoring the gym/keeping insane hours (sleeping enough, just out--of-whack), anxiety, shittier diet than usual, and a good load of nonstop drunkeness for a few days there (well, that's to be expected I suppose, "i need my medicine!") I have laid off of that but i guess I needed to get it out of my system, unsurprisingly. Fortunately I did it the smart way (all things being relative) and didn't spend more than a couple of bucks in the process. At least not in my previous fashion, no way..

I feel as if I am coming up for air a little, fading back into reality, after this constant rush of fresh weirdness. Trying ot get my head collected and decide.. what I want... to do with my life. Interestingly, I stumbled up my old journal, which I began keeping exactly 3 years ago (October 20th - TOMORROW!) right when I had the last maaaajorly major shift in my life, well as big as those things go. It was crazy to read, in that not too much time has passed but I have absolutely become a different person with a different perspective in so many ways since writing that stuff. Ironic that I wondered about it at the time, as well - knowing myself, not too surprising but still weird enough to be weird. I only read a couple of entries from when I was still "Fresh" enough to want to stop reading and let the past be left, and it was kinda annoying to firle through as well (again, unsurprisingly) - but I feel there is some things to be learned through it's further perusal. Definitely differently written than how I have handled this more public version of a journal (and yes, that's one of the reasons I am keepingthis public-ish one, now..). Damn, you technology, why do you always have to be so RIGHT? Why couldn't you have been properly reformatted into oblivion for cryin' out loud! Well, you can never escape what you were, or are.. truly...

I'd love to integrate that thing with this someday.. Well, not "love" to, but it would be sensible I guess. Irrelevant, overall, but I can be self-serving for five fucking minutes, thanks very much.

And with that on my mind, again my thoughts turn to my current situation.. what do I do, NOW. What, what, what. I have been keeping quite busy, and on top of things as must be done (a little slack in a couple areas, but as my personality will allow, nothing of any huge consequence.. ahem.. pay those damned bills please..) Still I look at my bank account (a coconut) and whil it's enough to keep me afloat for alittle while, it looks like a big warning for down-the-road, or more appropriately a train off in the distance coming at me full speed ahead. I am angry, I have to face it my plans have been dashed, and while they are by no means destroyed, I was getting comfy with my stability and finally I admit it "back to this shit again..." No, not the being unemployed part, the not knowing what the hell I wanna do!

So, my friend MVG lent me this book about Miles Davis. Not my usual reading material, but then that is why it is interesting to me. I am not too terribly far into it (I will hopefully wrap it up shortly, as I am finding myself looking at more time for reading and stuff coming up quickly) but it's enough to stoke the fires within me. I am still at the part where he is quite young, and coming into his own, but already full of himself - not wrecked all over from drugs and crazy women, fame etc, but getting known in his scene, performing with his heroes, and zig-zagging across the country. Yeah, so he's a good ten years younger than I am now at that point, but of course the roads (and times, and industries, and.. lots of stuff) are definitely different. Still there's that spark that is the same, the passion for something that you just KNOW you gotta do, the love you have (if love is even the right word) - maybe just the feeling of proper belonging to this thing that somehow makes sense to you and your idea of culture and your connection to it, how it feels correct to you. Whatever. Pardon the soup-talk - anyway I get that from him, from a few books I have read. Usually they are rife with anger and venom from pissed off drunks, but this guy is just so psyched to be on his path. Not even terribly happy about it, but wise enough to know he is where he belongs and seeing his gods reduced to mortality in front of him just gives him perspective and respect for the greater picture.

Ha, watch as I get further into the book in a couple days and I take it all back "I was WRONG!!! He got all fucked up and steamrolled by his greed, his humanity, his potential for destruction!!!! Who am I to expect to escape any kind of similar pathetic fate! I succumb now!!!" Err, I am not easily malleable. Or ignorant. Or if I am, then I am ignorant of my own ignorance.. so I win.. yay!

Anyway, so the point is.. I have gone on about this sort of a little here and there in conversation with my friends, family, relationship-partners, etc. lately... But yeah, I am attached to Hollywood very closely and importantly, but i can hear the dinner bell ringing a little more strongly and it's maybe not coming from the fuckin' valley anymore. Or the West Side. Or thereabouts. New York, New York, New York.. It is scary and I love it.. we Angelenos have a disdain for it (rivalry) and we Bostonians have a disdain for it (hatred, fear) but I RON have a magnetic draw to it. It's a china shop and I am a bull. I feel the same way about Hollywood, but NYC has layers, man. It's got the old world, and the new world, and it's just.. it's this alien thing. Where LA is a vacation, NYC is getting back to real life. Of course the seasons suck. Yeah the rent is.. abominable. The work industry for what I do is.. uhm... questionable. But I have to say, there's an aesthetic of that city and it's vibe and it's culture, it's character, it screams out to me like a horny demon in the night, and it grows like a cancer within me. Okay so now I am being darkly (and shittily) poetic but that's what bloggin's for. Anyway the point is if I have to go somewhere, and there's a good enough lead-in to get there, then I am all ears.. even if it is the end of me now...

Europe, as well, is of interest to me, great interest. I have to research this shit. I know in spite of all I say, there's a time and a place for joes like me. I look at my portfolio, my resume, and where I am now and what I have built up, and the pirate ship isn't sinking so badly after all, I can still make out a bunch of reasons (talking career-wise) to stay put where I am.. ride the wave.. But I am 31. I am going to have to make like I am ten years younger, as I always say I am/feel, for real, if I wanna have the mental prowess to pull up and go on with this madness somewhere else. So I will say again, I am putting my feelers out there, and if something good enough feels back, then I will have some heady decisions to make.

I look around my apartment, it's sparsely decorated, but it is me. It's my stuff. I am an American, we like our stuff. Some more than others, but y'know. if I leave I am likely gonna box most of it up for storage somewhere or just sell it/trash it. Again, reminded of those journals I found earlier, the time I wrote that was when I went through a similar experience.. boxing up old shit and then realizing how little it mattered, these "things" I had accumulated nad just starting nearly from scratch. I had some clothes, a bed mattress pad, a tiny TV, a stereo, a car, a PC, some CDs, that was about it. All the other little knickknacks I'd accumulated/brought with me from "the old world" got tossed asunder (or ass-under). In some ways, some aspects of my personality, my loves, my expectations as well.

Yesterday I had to go into the valley for the first time since I'd been let go, specifically to the neighborhood where I'd moved shortly after getting to LA to begin with all those years ago. Sherman Oaks ain't bad, but it's just so long-gone-gone, gone-gone-gone from me. Going back and seeing how close it was, and knowing i am going through the usual cycle again just embittered me, do I wanna really go through another Sherman Oaks elsewhere? It did piss me off, instead of nostalgia I was just reminded of the predicaments I was in when my life was there in that town, and how far away and pointless that all now feels.. regardless of the truth. All these thoughts and feelings exhaust me when faced with the prospect of doing it all again, from scratch - how many times? If I do it again now, I am DEFINITELY setting myself up to do it again-again, X number of years from now. If I split to NYC, how long till I get tired of that scene and "beat it" and want to move onto the next level? See, this all starts to sound like gibberish, but then I look at some people who I know in my life who have done exactly this stuff I speak of.. to different levels of satisfaction. I am not satisfiable it seems(and probably hope never to be..?)

Something else I must bring up, while I am on this little tear here.. I look at where I've got to now, in so many regards of mylife, and I can sum it up this way, and be assured of how I feel. I rememeber the suburbs where I grew up, and how small that felt when I went to College and then moved to the Big City (Boston). I remember how small Boston and the little surrounding towns felt after I moved out here and spent a little time getting acquainted. Then I traveled a little.. somewhat faintly, but enough to feel "what is a special place" in the world and what's not so special, or rather, what's the same everywhere.. and I look at where I am now, like right up the street from me.. 5 minutes up the street in a few different directions.. And Hollywood definitely feels very very special to me, having thought of all of that. The stupid little liquor stores, gas stations, delicatessens, auto parts places, drive-thru fast food joints and parking garages and ethnic food restaurants. Yeah, it's the same shit as everywhere else, but it's definitely adhered to a part of my soul and mind in a way. A way that is hard to resist, such that the thought of leaving is like considering cutting off my whole left hand. "Oh, I can come back" but that's different.. when you branch off, everything changes, everybody does, if it's some sizable amount of time.

So, this is the sort of back-and-forth my head is going through right now. I take it as it comes, I am just putting my best foot forward and throwing myself out there to see what opportunities try to call me back. Then I will take it from there and settle further into my latest madness. The End.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006