...looking at my cell phone, when I started walking up this piece of Into the Woods scenery and almost fell. For God's sake, don't ever use your cell phone unless you're stationary and preferably strapped down.
We just found out that Carl Naluai died three weeks ago. I knew him through playing at Elizabeth Cole's bat mitzvah, from tuning the piano at the synagogue, and through a wonderful production of Candide at the synagogue. He could be scary but had a big soul.
Today I drove to San Jose to see Tim Diener, who had come from Pennsylvania to see his sister. I hadn't seen him in 28 years, but we had a great time. Another friend came over who happened to live five minutes away and Tim also hadn't seen in many years.
Susie Marinescu burst into applause when the man she refers to as “the animal” was escorted out of a Cook County courtroom today to begin serving life in prison for the brutal murders of her mother and sister.
When I was growing up in Philadelphia, no one had a sprinkler system; in Sacramento, everyone has one. On Monday, we finally replaced the ancient metal pipes (clogged with rust) with modern PVC. I lent the sprinkler guys Jennifer's garage door remote so they could get to the sprinkler control inside the garage. They left it on top of Jennifer's car; when she went out to run an errand, she drove off with the remote on top of the car. The sprinkler guy found it down the street later, crushed. He cheerfully went to Home Depot and got a replacement; I paid him for the sprinkler system, which is spectacular. "You'll notice a big savings on your water bill!" he said. (Probably not; like many older homes in Sacramento, we don't have a water meter and pay a flat monthly fee.)
Instead of seeing Star Trek for the third time, go see the movie Moon. It's a thoughtful, low-key thriller with a brain, a throwback to the science fiction of the 70s. You will be surprised and fascinated.
A new Sandwich Spot opened in the formerly empty storefront near Espresso Metro. To celebrate the first day, they had live music. The sandwich I had was good — I think they're going to make it. Later we saw Moon, a new science-fiction movie starring Sam Rockwell. It's a throwback to the 60s and 70s... no aliens and no action. Philosophical and emotional. Super performance by Rockwell.
At Ashland, I saw a wonderful comeddia dell'arte show called The Servant of Two Masters. One of the characters, Dottore, a ridiculous professor in cap and gown, had the album cover for "Whipped Cream and other Delights" as his mortarboard. I mentioned it to some people at the coffeehouse and found out that almost everyone knows and loves this album cover.
I went on the 15-mile Night Ride in Portland. Hundreds of people took part, many in costume. There were two rest stops; the first featured outdoor bike-themed music videos with free popcorn, and the second had disco dancing (Y!M!C!A!) plus free candy. I hadn't ridden a bike in a big city since I was a college student in Philadelphia.
Portland's Voodoo Doughnuts has become almost as famous a local landmark as Powell's Books. The line frequently reaches around the block (although, in fairness, Portland blocks are smaller than average). We ate lunch at a restaurant that featured a burger inside a sliced Voodoo doughnut. Not only that, street kids sometimes buy doughnuts and scalp them to people on the street who are too busy to wait in line.
I just watched the Bob Dylan biopic I'm Not There. Not for everyone; required viewing for fans of Bob Dylan or Cate Blanchett. In this scene the great comedian David Cross has a cameo as Alan Ginsberg.
I drove my mom to Suisun City to see her friend Francisca who she hadn't seen in 52 years! She had some interesting stories. For example, if you are a rich Filipino-American returning to the Philippines, you may be "KQ" — kidnap quality.