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Exit ArchiveArchive for the "Coincidence" Category

NOTE: I wrote this on Thursday but did not get a chance to proof it and post it until now. I left all the timings the same.

Fuz, my new boyfriend, found out yesterday that a friend of his died. Ariel and his dad, producer/director Bob Clark, were killed by a drunk driver on the PCH.

Fuz told me this last night, late. This was following a major ordeal trying to get a huge-ass armoire Fuz had bought on Criag’s List up the narrow stairwells of his apartment building, which in turn followed a night of rehearsal on episode 5 of Life from the Inside. It was, overall, a tiring night.

We were eating Apple Jacks and Froot Loops we’d bought that afternoon at Costco. With vanilla Silk. It tasted okay. Fuz said, “I have something to tell you,” which means nothing really good.

It was difficult to know what to do. I was so tired, and this was quite some shocking news. I mostly just remained quiet, expressing my sorrow for him and commenting on what a horrible way that was to have to go. Fuz and Ariel had been trying to get together for a while to have dinner, but could never make the time, and were finally going to make sure they got together sometime next week. But now it won’t happen.

When I first started working at Disney, I was the receptionist in the foyer of a former warehouse which contained the Home Video I.S. department. I just sat there all day, answering some phones from time to time, greeting the rare visitor, and e-mailing my friends whose cubicles were just inside the door. I still have these friends today: Michelle, Carol, Marcy (who would come on the scene later), and Steve.

Back in those days, it was not unusual for a few of us to tool up the coast several times a summer to spend the day at El Matador beach. Steve and I took just such a trip one weekend day.

The traffic on the PCH was horrible, the kind of non-moving mass I was coming to learn was common in L.A. At one point, I turned to Steve and said, “I hope this is something like an accident. If I’m waiting in this kind of traffic, it better be for a good reason.”

Of course, it was a “good” reason. An accident. A horrible one. A completely maimed Mercedes convertible, mostly just a twisted wreck, and some other American car. A big thing. This was in the time before SUV overpopulation, so it was probably a Taurus or something. I can’t recall. Whatever it was, it and the Mercedes had hit each other head-on at high speed.

I felt horrible that I had said what I’d said. An accident like that rarely leaves anyone alive.

The traffic was still snarled many hours later, as we were driving back down the coast. I said nothing except maybe to comment on how incredible it was that one accident could cause so much traffic. Life and smooth traffic are both tenuous in L.A.

Back in the warehouse foyer on Monday, doing something no-doubt time-wasting but ultimately more creative than anything I do these days, one of the I.S. guys came in, someone I chatted with often. That morning, he was morose. I asked him if he was okay. He told me a friend of his had gotten killed in a car accident over the weekend, and he was very upset about it.

Deep down, I knew exactly where this was going. Just as you do now. When I got up my nerve, I asked, as carefully as possible, where the accident had happened. Of course, it was the one Steve and I had seen on the PCH. The I.S. guy told me his friend had been riding in a Mercedes convertible. She had been riding with a guy no one knew.

The I.S. fellow’s emotions were particularly bruised because he hadn’t seen his friend for a while, and they were supposed to have dinner in a couple days. But now it wasn’t going to happen.

The coincidence was quite horrifying. Oh, it was exciting, too, deep down, but in a sickening way.

Steve and I related our story to our friends later that day. I told them that so-and-so actually knew one of the people in the accident. But Carol had one more twist to add to the story.

At the time, Carol had a fiancé named Mike, who had a buddy who worked at a car dealership. Mike’s friend had told Mike that one of the guys at the dealership had been killed in a horrible car accident on the PCH over the weekend. He was in one of the dealership’s Mercedes, and was riding with a woman that none of them knew.

I didn’t tell any of this to Fuz last night, even though it all went through my head while I was shoveling Apple Jacks into my not-really-hungry but bored maw. I also didn’t bring up Amelia’s death last year. I wanted to, just to kind of show that I understood what he was feeling. But a three-way coincidence and a child’s death weren’t really going to be helpful now. I know I can’t really do or say anything useful. I just need to be there for him if he needs me.

As for the now-vanished day trips up the coast, those newbie Angelino salad days long ago made way for a too-busy, same-old-grind lifestyle that keeps us from being more carefree. Maybe that’s what happens as you age and settle. You have to make up for it with more extravagant plans, like the upcoming weekend trip Marcy and Carol and Sven and I are taking to Austin to meet up with Michelle, who now lives in Connecticut. Flying to Texas for three days is our new El Matador beach day. Yet these sorts of get-togethers are still too rare, and I’m not exactly enthused about being aware that one day, every one of us will feel some pain over a loss made more bitter due to procrastination of friendship.

While my vinyl kid’s bracelet fashion trend has not taken off quite yet, apparently my sense of shoe fashion is already on its way to becoming legendary. View, if you will, this video still of “Guy,” whom I play in Life from the Inside:

The Shoes Guy Wears

See those nappy shoes, bought for their wackiness and completely clashing sense of both fashion and lack of fashion? Now please witness the following shot of a not-so-happy Sharon Stone:

The Shoes Sharon Stone Wears

Amazing! That I have such power over the fashion sense of others! And since I do wear my Chococat bracelet in Life from the Inside, expect the next paparazzi shots of Mizz Stone to include her wearing some tasty plastic wrist decoration featuring Chi Chai Monchan.

See more pictures of Sharon in Guy’s shoes!

Two coincidences today.

1: Phillip mentioning the Monty Python “Wafer Thin Mint” sketch before going to see Stranger than Fiction, which has that clip in it.

2: Molly starting today’s wet willy barrage, then seeing this restaurant next door to the theater:

While I’m stuck here waiting for my PowerBook’s new hard drive to fill itself back up with my old hard drive, I wanted to share something with everyone.

On Wednesday, four of us from work went on a field trip to Santa Monica to research high definition monitors at a store there. Beforehand, we went to lunch at El Cholo. It was very delicious, and though I’ve passed it by many times and wondered, “I wonder, is their food any good?” I have never stopped in. Sadly, I now know I’ve wasted years of happy Mexican food eating at a place local to me.

But that’s not the point.

The point is I now have a bag of El Cholo’s truly yummy pecan pralines. They are made with sugar, butter, corn syrup, and pecans, and nothing else. They are little hardened blops of delight! What makes eating them so much more interesting is that, when you open the bag and go in to take a sniff, you get the unmistakable aroma of the Indiana Jones ride at Disneyland.

“This man has become too unstable for public consumption.” No, really. It’s true. The smell may be sweeter, but it is definitely of the same phylum. I do a double-sniff each time I open the bag, because I simply can not believe it to be true.

I will have the bag with me this weekend if anyone cares to snuffle.

Thanks to Robbyn for pointing this one out to me.

The old house where I used to live growing up is now the site of a haunted house. Well, okay, not exactly a haunted house, but more a haunted field. It’s called “Field of Corpses.” According to the intro at the website, Torrance White, the man who built the house in the 1880s, and his family “found something” during the harvest of 1801. They started disappearing. And then the question is asked: “Why has everyone who has since lived on the property suddenyl [sic] died?”

Well, I haven’t suddenyl died, and neither has my family! So I guess we have to allow them some creative leeway.

I always thought, as a kid, that we had the perfect house to do a haunted house, but the farthest I ever got was stringing up ghosts and bats and things, rigging them with fishing wire so they’d move every time the front door was opened. Now, while they have not gone and made the house itself a haunted house, at least my childhood home overlooks the terror of Torrence’s discovery.

As I grew up in the house, the vast fields around it gradually were torn up and turned into housing developments. You can see that in the satellite image. My dad had the idea, back when I was in high school, to try to save our house from this fate by turning it into a restaurant. People had always been curious about the house and would sometimes stop by and ask for tours (which we didn’t give them… it was our home!). A restaurant would be a good way to save the house and let people see it.

The running and eventual losing of the restaurant is a long story for another time, but the house has since been a place for spacial events (wedding receptions, parties, etc.), and the garage/barn my dad had built behind the house became the new home of a locally-famous pastry shop, Das Meyer. I used to go to the original Das Meyer in junior high, on French class field trips. That the now-old new Das Meyer barn is called the Das Meyer Fine Pastry Chalet gives me a case of the smirking titters.

My mom and sister and others swear that our house was haunted. As a small kid, I made up stories about it being haunted, but I never really saw anything like that. Apparently, the ghosts became more active after the house became a restaurant. My mom said lights used to turn on when no one was in the room. A couple of the waitresses refused to go into the storm cellar, where the wine was kept, because they said it was haunted. My sister and a boyfriend witnessed the sudden and violent opening of a closed door that, after our rec room was built, led to nowhere.

One night, when the house was abandoned and being readied for conversion to the restaurant, some friends and I went up to my old bedroom and gave a Ouija board the ol’ college try. Nothing interesting happened. No lights flickering or doors flying open or wine bottles being stored. Figures I never got to see anything like that.

Well, real hauntings aside, I can not tell you how hilarious this is, this new event at “my house,” and how… bizarre it is. There’s my old haunt (ha ha ha!), being seen by all! I guess my dad’s plan worked.

The hurricane currently hitting Louisiana is Katrina.

The last name of the governor of Louisiana is Blanco.

The woman who works in the office next to mine is Katrina Blanco.

Well, how about this. I am the subject of a “Missed Connections” post on Craig’s List. I never read Craig’s List (though I sold my TV there). But Richard’s friend asked him if it might be me. Lo and behold, it is. This is so hilarious! I think I know who it is, but I guess I should contact him to find out for sure.

As proof, and for everyone’s entertainment, I’ll post the post below. Matt, my “Asian buddy,” can confirm this is me.

To answer your questions, yes, I was going commando, and no, I am only in shape, not “way-in-shape.”

* * * * * *

Disney Guy at Sunday Pride – m4m – 40

Dear dark blond, surfer-type guy that stopped at my booth and completed the survey for us at LA Pride on Sunday… You were very chill and relaxed. You were wearing only your brown shorts. They were hanging off of your way-in-shape body. (My friends and I noticed that you probably had to be there commando.) You wore only the shorts, sandals and shoulder-length hair. And your confidence! You also had nice light-colored eyes. Your Asian buddy was along, too. “Just friends,” I hope.

I chatted with you a bit. I complimented you, too … I know that you heard me say it. I asked about your work, and you said “Disney”. All this, and I didn’t go further and exchange info. I wish that I had, and won’t make that mistake again.

I hope that this finds you and that you’ll be in touch! You were exactly the kind of person I would like to know! Disney Burbank people, if you read this and your co-worker fits this description, you’re lucky …and please pass this to him. :-) Thank U.

Well, you will not believe this! I could not bury this coincidence in the comments area of my previous post on the new highway font.

I got an email from a software company that makes a cool little Mac utility called You Control: Fonts. (It puts a WYSIWYG font menu in the menu bar for use in most running apps. In case you’re interested.)

Here’s what they say:

If you’re like us, you look forward to every March. Sure, it’s the start of Spring and the flowers are starting to bloom and trees are getting their leaves back. But wouldn’t you rather be sitting on the couch or driving to an arena to watch some fantastic NCAA College hoops? If you happen to be out on a road trip to catch some games, keep your eyes peeled for a new typeface that has been Federally approved for traffic control devices called Clearview.

As a serious font user, you already know the power that a typeface like Clearview can have on a project. And choosing the right font has never been easier than with You Control: Fonts. Combine customizable WYSIWYG previews, grouping by font family and the ability to set hot keys for individual typefaces so you can set them on the fly to your text and you get a great product that has been recognized by Mac Design magazine and by Macworld magazine as a superb value.

So while the NCAA Tourny hasn’t started quite yet, our March Madness has with a limited time offer to get You Control: Fonts for only $9.95! That leaves you with $20 extra to put in your office NCAA Tourny Pool. But hurry, our Madness won’t last forever.

I imagine some guy at the You Software offices (a coffee house in Seattle, perhaps?) somehow running into my post here (through the magic of happenstance), looking up my name to see that I’d already paid full price for the software (though Uncle Walt reimbursed me), found another tidbit somewhere that I could give a flying hoo-ha about anything the NCAA does (though I don’t hate sports so much as I tell people I do), and wrote this little mail just for me to tick me off.

But, of course, I flatter myself. And I like the app. And coincidences. I’m all a-twitter over this!

I dropped my car off incredibly early today at Robertson Honda. As usual, I had to take their “Courtesy Shuttle” to work.

Coincidentally, one of the guys in the shuttle was Jodi Benson’s husband. (She is the voice–still!–of The Little Mermaid.)

I was going to say how that all came up in our conversation, but I’m so tired my eyes are snoring and my brain is as creative as a TV executive’s.

So I’ll just say that he was a nice man, and we had a good Disney chat.

I went to The Newsroom for brunch today with John, who was in town for the weekend, and his freind. We were shown to our table by a guy I met a few years ago. We dated a couple times, but then he went back to his ex. A year or so after that, I ran into him and the ex was re-exed, and this guy was single again. But I was dating. And that’s the last time I saw him until today.

Oh, but I wouldn’t be writing this if there weren’t more!

After brunch, I went bumping around Melrose and WeHo. On the way back to my car, there was the same guy, sitting in that park by The Abbey. I stopped to chat.

I am not the kind of person who believes in things happening for a pre-determined reason. I do believe that things happen and you make the reason yourself. Bumping into this guy twice in one day was not a sign of destiny, but I decided to make it a sign in the “life is wacky” kind of way. I don’t believe it means we are meant to date again or anything, just that, at the very least, I was meant to re-connect with a very nice, genuine guy.

On Tuesday, I was enjoying yoga and dinner (not simultaneously) with my friend David and his new boyfriend Sean. I had never met Sean, and he was very nice. He’s never seen Brazil, but he wants to, so he’s good in my book.

Sean works for GLAAD. Fearing a coincidence was about to happen, I took a breath and asked if he knew Matt L., a good friend of my ex, Matt C. Well, not only did Sean know Matt L., he used to be his boss! And he had also spoken once on the phone with Matt C. about some singer they both really like (Amy Grant).

Of course, there’s more: Matt L. and Sean work with a guy named Jens. Jens is married to Emily. Emily went to high school with David in West Hartford, Connecticut.

This calls for a smiley: 8(

And did I mention I’m only two degrees separated from Kevin Bacon? It’s true.

I just wanted to mention how pleased I was to be part of the Hopper coincidence. After the whole mother/sister Barbara/Laura Steve Steve extraveganza died down around 1995, I thought my connection to the coincidences was over.

Then I bought a little book about a man named Hopper.

On to Paris? Enjoy the escargot, or, as I like to call them: FREEDOM SNAILS.