Thursday, January 17, 2013

"Technology is cyclical."*

   I spent some time brainstorming things to write about so none of you would think I was dead…but be forewarned: this post is not really about anything. So stop reading now if you want. You jerks.

   I kid, I kid.
Look! I drew you a picture of a brainstorm.

   In the interest of clearing my brain of the clutter that’s built up in there over a lifetime the last week or so, I’m doing another Pu Pu Platter of crap I’ve been thinking about. Sample at random.

   1. Let’s start with the term “pu pu platter.” Growing up, I always pictured that spelled “poo poo platter” and assumed it was a platter of various pieces of feces. Then, when my family went to Hawaii in 2003, a witty/bitter tour guide informed us that pūpū was a Hawaiian term for snail but had come to denote a variety of bite-size foods on a platter for sampling (snail frequently being one of them). When I looked it up just now, the Internet claimed that it was a Chinese-American term for a big ol’ mish mash of small foods on a plate. So it all means the same thing, essentially: a big pile of crap. And so, in a way, I was right all along. I love being right!

2. I had to use a payphone the other night for the first time in…10 years? I was on my way to have dinner at Richie and Jerome’s new apartment in Pasadena and realized I didn’t have my phone. It sort of forced a series of terrifying realizations: a) I didn’t know where I was going; b) I wasn’t sure if I still had Richie’s number memorized (who memorizes phone numbers these days? They’re all in our mobiles!); c) did pay phones still exist? And where would I find one?; d) did pay phones accept credit cards? Because I never have any cash or coin on me because I tend to spend it like it’s already been spent so why save it for later, right?”

   I found a pay phone (the last one in America?) at the Shell Station near what I thought was Richie and Jerome’s apartment and saw from my car that it was 35 cents to make a call. Thank fucking hell that I had some change in my wallet…but then I had to touch and hold that phone and put my change in. Then the phone told me it wanted more money: turns out pay phones are still the 50 cents they were when I was in high school. I dug for more change and prayed that I was actually calling Richie and that he would answer even though my number would be a strange one.

   I got Jerome on Richie's phone and everything was good. I started to get back in my car and a man’s voice said, “I can tell you the funniest joke you’ve ever heard in your life.”

I jumped and looked around.

A black guy was sitting between two trees on a ledge about 6 feet from the pay phone. I only mention that he was black because I’m pretty sure if he’d had lighter skin I would have noticed him sitting there while I made my phone call. (We pasty folks reflect light.)

   Shaken up by the surprise right after the scary re-entry into pay phone usage, I told him I didn’t really have time for a joke.
   And I didn't. And I was a little weirded out by the fact that he was lurking in the dark between two trees in a Shell Station parking lot. I was nice about it, but I left.

   But then I read a funny joke on one of the blogs I most enjoy.

   "How many Mexicans does it take to screw in a light bulb?"

   "Just Juan."

   HAHAHAHAHAHA! So funny. Seriously, I’ve been thinking about it for days. Maybe that's just my lame sense of humor. Sometimes you like a joke that doesn't hurt too many people's feelings.

3. Jodie Foster came out of the closet at the Golden Globes. I don’t know why this makes me sleep better at night, but it does. We clearly always knew she was gay, but it’s nice to hear her say it. It makes things feel right with the world. Even though she was incredibly vague, I feel like I finally read a page out of her journal. Can I get an amen for voyeurism?

4. My buddy Chad (who you know about from here and also here) is now in the coffin-making business. He makes them small. He makes them for fish. Check out his handiwork:

Coffins by Chad. "Isn't your pet better than the toilet?"

   I almost want to buy a goldfish, have it die on me 4 days later (as they inevitably do), and stage an elaborate funeral. Maybe one that would rival the amazing service I gave my hamster, Holeakala, back in 1995 (complete with my sister Ouisa on the recorder playing "We Are One in the Spirit"). If you want to buy a goldfish coffin (or a coffin for any other kind of fish), let me know and I’ll have Chad handcraft the most amazing final resting place a tiny pet could ever hope for. It beats the toilet, right?
*Dennis Duffy from 30 Rock. Turns out, he was right. If I had a barrel of money, I'd invest in a buttload of pay phones!

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