My 4 fans ask:
How come you haven’t posted in so long– did you die?
No, I just took a week off.
It was just such a weird week that I didn’t even beat off. Or I did, but less than usual. I have beat off just about every day for the past 26 years, but this week– the car was dead; I would have to take the bus home. The 218 half an hour over Laurel Canyon, drop off at Sunset and Crescent Heights, wait half an hour for the 2– not the 302, which Google Maps had assured me in its public transit directions would pick me up and take me home toute fucking suite– the 2. Because the 302, which is the bus that comes by two minutes after the 218 reaches Sunset and Crescent Heights, that one will just blow right by you as you stand hanging half off the sidewalk holding your briefcase like a jerkoff in a whirlwind of leaves and wrappers stirred up by the 302 and you’ll swear that the driver had a malicious gleam in his eye. Black guy. I assume he’s thinking “Haha! Fuck you, cracker!” as he deliberately ignores my stop. In reality, he’s thinking “Haha! Fuck you cracker!” As he goes about his prescribed route which does not include my stop. Go ahead and think “fuck you, cracker,” by the way, black people. None of us care.
Then the 2, some time between 25 and 45 minutes later, 25-45 minutes of that weird desolate LA sidewalk with no pedestrians on one of the busiest and most famous streets on the planet; and when they do come by, they’re always in yoga gear. Always German-looking people with ipods on their way back from some kind of exercise with a spiritual element. And the homeless, occasionally. One guy who asked “you’re not the President of the enchanted forest, are you?” In a sense, yes. But I’m not gonna give him the satisfaction. He should have followed the election more closely.
Other than that, no people. Just cars blowing by; white Civics with spoilers and giant stickers in heathen Chinese; Mercedes and Range Rovers playing the worst music you can possibly imagine louder than you could possibly imagine; just expensively attired Armenians putting the sound of an oil derrick thump thump thumping through a subwoofer whose bass can be measured by seismologists, smiling, nodding their heads, windows open, the loud bass thump just saying over and over “DON’T THINK, DON’T THINK, DON’T THINK.” They should put a label on house music that says “WARNING: GUARANTEED TO MAKE OTHER MOTORISTS HATE YOUR ETHNICITY.” I reversed my position on the Armenian Genocide waiting for that bus. I regretted that the Turks hadn’t finished the job.
Back on the bus. “Transit TV.” Which is a small monitor they put at the front of the bus that plays weather reports from the Mexican channel and public service announcements saying put down the god damn soda pop, Maria, and give your kid a carrot. Rachael Ray says: eat right when money’s tight. A beaming woman holding a brown paper grocery bag with obviously healthful leaves and celery stalks protruding. Carrot greens. A pigtailed girl in knee and elbow pads and a sparkly purple helmet pushing a pink bike. She is going to eat healthy, this little girl. No more god damn Double Whoppers® with mayo and American cheese and supersize fries. You are gonna eat a carrot, you little cunt, so you stop being so god damn motherfucking fat. And again in Spanish.
I am ashamed to admit that I couldn’t figure out the Transit TV brain teaser. A math problem. A pet shop owner has a certain amount of birds, and a certain amount of lizards. You need to do an inventory of this person’s pet shop, but he will only tell you the number of heads and legs in the store. 30 heads, 70 legs. So:
30 heads, 70 legs
x + y = 30
x is birds, y is lizards.
2x + 4y = 70
2x+ 4y = x + y + 40
x = -3y + 40
4y-40 = -x
2x + 4y = 70– that’s a fucking multivariate function, how the fuck do you turn that into one number…
EXERCISE YOUR MIND! It tells me. I consider myself a smart person. I was sitting with a fucking open laptop, unlimited scratch paper to work out the algebra, an advantage virtually no other person who ever rides the 2 bus ever has; they can barely keep track of their children and DUI’s. Still, I was too stupid to solve the problem. It’s 5 lizards and 25 birds.
But how are you going to figure out how to get that problem down to one variable when there are loud jerkoffs, people yelling, people having phone calls explaining how I don’t know who any of these people on this bus are, I don’t know what set they claim…. I was in for fifteen years. It changes you. And then eyefucking everybody, weird little hard boiled egg eyes; eyefucking old ladies as though they were M13 looking to shake him down for Top Ramen. Eyefucking a Chinese woman in a wheelchair as though she’d told off the Peckerwood shot caller and needed to be taught a lesson about respect. The bus was kind of fun, but my dream of writing a small novella in the 3 hours per day of this commute was quickly dashed. You can barely make your hands stay on the keys; the fucking thing lurches around like a high pagoda on top of an elephant.
And then home, finally. 9:30. Drained and vibrating. The saving grace is the bus drops you off near the liquor store. I still have a job. It is still going away but I still have it for now and it is “spec season,” when agents send around a lot of available feature film screenplays and they’re all terrible but each of them has to be read right away just in case this is the one that sells; my mind is erased by thousands and thousands of hurriedly read words by horrible untalented writers. If you are reading this and you are a screenwriter, kill yourself.
Now I’m back writing and beating off. I got a new car. I’d had a nice girl coming over every night but she was in a bad mood this morning and I’m going to take this as a harbinger of her leaving me forever. That will help me write about her over my lunch break. You can’t write about something good while it’s happening. Thank God this thing that brought me happiness is over so I can get back to work.