Last Wednesday was my very first tap dance class ever. I’m turning over a new leaf. It’s time to step outside of my cozy comfort zone. And this class is sure to do just that. The room is small for the thirty or so people we’ve got in that class. Students at City College range from fresh-out-of-high-school teens to Tenderloin call girls to random twenty-somethings looking to do something with their free time to super drop dead old folks and everyone in between. And if you think about what a freak-infested town this is to begin with, just realize that a good deal of that freakshow population has, at any given point in time, gone to City College. And we’ve got a good healthy dose of freakishness in this tap class.
Kristin and I were sitting down waiting for the class to begin when in walks this guy with a unibrow, a Cosby sweater AND a page-boy haircut. I couldn’t have envisioned this any better. And he does a flying split-leap into the center of the room. And this was only the first few minutes of class. During the teacher’s talk, he sat there mumbling and doing floor exercises and did all these butterflies so as to flash his crotch. In our direction. He kind of reminded me of one of my uncles which is totally unfortunate.
The teacher kept getting irritated despite the fact that she’s very kooky and sweet. She had to lay the smack down a couple times on Cosby Sweater and once on this crazy red-head who kept asking questions in an attempt to get out of class early. “Can I add?” “Will there be enough space?” “Are these the right kind of shoes?” “Can you just add me now?” And then finally the girl looked like she was going to explode and she said (to the class), “Can I just tell a funny story? On my way to class I found a parakeet. But I don’t want the parakeet. I tried to call animal control but they wouldn’t come out for a parakeet. I don’t know what to do but I have to go.” It isn’t like a freakin’ wounded raccoon or man-hungry mountain lion. Then the teacher tried to tell some story about how some other student found a bird and it was the best tap class because no one tried to tap too hard. It struck me that maybe that someone was playing some practical joke because how random had this first 30 minutes been? And was this a preview of the next 18 weeks?
I’m one of those smug jerks who actually thinks they can conquer any challenge. But when the teacher made us tap in stocking feet I knew I was in for it. I think this class might kick my ass.
I have this feature on my WordPress account that lets me see what search terms people have used to find my site. Here’s a list of the big winners:
Model gay eye patch.
Brother makeup panties.
Allergy to Windex.
Fat girls wrestle.
Gum graft with cadaver tissue.
I am so appreciative of all the freak traffic I’ve got going on. I love it! If only the freaks would leave awesome comments on some stuff like, “Hey, Windex poisoning IS a very important problem. You wouldn’t be laughing if your eye swelled up the size of dang old golf ball!” Or, “You need more pictures of Asians girls with eye patches. I feel robbed.” And, I wish the real Baby Jessica would write me personally and tell me what the hell she’s been up to all these years?! Like, is she a party girl? Does she still fall down a lot? What are her views on Scientology? I think I might have found her on MySpace—it’s her assuming she never moved out of that crummy little Texas town. But right when I was going to click ‘Add as a friend?’ I found I couldn’t do it. I am so disappointing.
But…I have found my Doppelganger. Well, actually my friend Romeo found her online and showed her pictures to me and I showed her to Mario who just HAD to contact her and say: “You look just like my girlfriend! It’s creepy!” And it is. We pose the same way. We have the same bone structure! What’s crazier is that we even have the same interests like crafts and food and we both have sinus problems. I wish she didn’t live on the other side of the country or I’d force her to be my friend.
So. Sunday was Gravy Day and I think it was perfect because I was busy doing nothing but recovering from Friday and Saturday nights. We all were. Angela was in the kitchen in an apron by the time I reached Sasha’s house and before I even got in the front door I could smell the sausage a-simmering. There’s something so happy about that. And boy, it was so wrong what we were doing: sitting down to eat gravy, but it was that good, mischievous kind of “I-hope-we-don’t-get-caught” feeling—like smoking cigars in high school.
I actually brought the tater tots. Sasha made the biscuits. Angela whipped up some hash browns and later, Michelle brought out a taco salad to “healthy” it up. So, except for some lettuce, our meal was varying shades of brown/gray. And writing this makes me feel a little ill, but at the time it was freakin’ splendid.
I don’t know all these mystical spices crazy Angela used, but I do know sausage and bacon were involved—it is after all an ancient, secret Chinese-Texan recipe. We ate and watched an America’s Next Top Model—an irony that I am only privy to right now. Then we played like hours of video games. We sang karaoke and played Dance Dance Revolution, Guitar Hero and Britney’s Dance Moves. I think we did this to feel better about what we had just done. Eaten sauce for a main course.
Saturday I did buck up and venture out into the Mission. The place we went to for glasses and glasses of wine was good. We all tried to drink our way around the world and hit all the continents/countries on the wine list but I only really went to France and Greece. Every recommendation our little server gave was terrible, but it’s wine and we’re not snobs so we drank it. Plus, we were distracted by our conversations about white water rafting, speed dating, and whether or not one of the girls should meet some possibly gay guy she’d met on the internet. Most of us voted yes, but she backed out anyway.
Incidentally, speed dating sounds terrible. My friend has gone to a couple of these events. She said you basically get a number and travel from seat to seat and have a 3-minute get-to-know-ya conversation with some dude. The three minutes is either too short or far too long. Upon just seeing this person for the first time, you’re supposed to write “Y” or “N” on some form they give you. Then you talk. I guess you’re supposed to keep a tally and at the end you enter all this info into the computer at home and you can see who picked you and whether you denied them which seems kind of mean. Most of them were undatable, she said. And three of them were cross-eyed.
Speaking of…Mario and Grover were walking around outside of the Girl’s Night Out bar and they saw amazing things. First was an Asian girl with an eye patch and a white beret. This to me is killer. She has stolen my look for ’08. I’m only partly joking. I like eye patches. Then they saw a bum with a mullet playing a guitar and singing the Spiderman theme song for an audience of…wait for it…other bums. Grover also got his nose smooshed by a crazy pool playing Indian dude in the bar who said, “You have a sexy nose…no, no, no, no.” Some people have all the luck.
I like to troll the obits sometimes for interesting stories. I’m not really all that morbid—I just think sometimes they can be very interesting. A couple of weeks ago there was a picture of a man with an eye patch and I was compelled to read his very long entry all about his affinity for the sea and making model ships in bottles. It could not have been more perfect. Today I happened to see a short news story about how Eddie “Bozo” Miller died at age 89. That is a fairly long life for a man “known for his amazing capacity for food consumption.” Apparently he ate 27 2-pound chickens in one sitting as part of a bet.
This past week I got an Evite from my friend asking me to come over and eat some country gravy. This is the first time I’ve ever gotten an invitation like this and so I had to reply “yes.” I think I said I’d wear my stretchy pants and possibly a scrunchie and my fake Uggs. I want to be comfy as I eat this gravy which I’ve only had once before but I do know is amazing. The other girls plan on eating it like soup which I find very disturbing. Shouldn’t it be like…on something? It is a sauce after all. I was told I could bring biscuits if I must.
I had a terrible semi-drunken dream last night. I was in a large, beautiful house in, I think, India and somehow a toucan got in and before I knew it, it was eating the baby parrot I loved so much. I kept screaming, “No, not the baby! Eat the mom instead!” I also had lots of dreams about swarms of ants and I really hated it.
Tonight is Girl’s Night Out in the Mission. For the longest I boycotted the Mission, or the “Mish” as I heard it called by disgusting non-native hipsters, because well, I didn’t feel cool enough. I still don’t. And then I think….wait a sec. I was born here. I know what the Mission was like before the dot-com invasion. I know that Taqueria Cancun does not necessarily have the bomb-est burritos. So, funk all that noise—I have some native rights here, don’t I?
Maybe what I need to do is explore some different part of the City. The Marina is out. The Sunset’s too far out. Downtown can be overwhelming. SOMA? I can learn to like the Tenderloin, I suppose. The TL and I have an interesting relationship. Mostly I hate it, but it does provide some amusement. Mario gets mad when I walk down Hyde from his. He walked with me the other day and, despite my assertion that it is relatively safe (especially when raining), we saw just oodles of crackheads looking for their next hop fix. I saw nuns, too, so that made me feel okay. Anyhow, I got a semi-anonymous email from someone in the Tenderloin that reads:
Subject: Hello from Kiyoshi in the Tenderloin
You look like someone I know. I am sitting here in my new apartment looking down at the city and doing searches on my space for tenderloin girl. lol
My name is kiyoshi and if you want to chat let me know. My myspace profile has nothing, I am 30 and I make music and I played where is my mind by the pixies for a talent show when I was in the tenth grade. I plyed drums and this girl sang. My friend byron was on guitar. Many acid trips later I became a producer. Well I hope you dont know anyone I know. If you do then fuck off I never even knew you.
I don’t even know when it was that I became a freak-magnet, but I suspect it was long ago because I barely batted an eyelash.
New Year’s Day was Oshogatsu, a freakin’ delicious but labor intensive day of sushi-making and consuming. The fear in the hearts of sweet little old Japanese grandmothers everywhere is that this traditional will soon be lost. No one knows how to make traditional sushi anymore. Seriously, when did all these super freaky rolls start hitting the big time? Like, why put corn chips in a roll? Really? Or fried chicken fingers or gobs of pink mayo. Do not misunderstand me here. I love all that shit. But sushi has lost its way. It’s become some weird, bastardized fat-American concoction. For shame.
So I try to watch and learn. Little Granny Kimi is depending on me. Mind you, there are a lot of distractions. This is the only time of year I see certain very eccentric members of my family. My cousin, who rarely comes home, was in rare form. He showed me his Zippo with the kanji for “Honor” on the front. I was like, “dude, I didn’t know you smoked!” And he said, “Oh no. Not me. But like they say, ‘it’s always good to be prepared’.” He always talks in cliché. It’s unbelievable. He will hold entire conversations without using a single original statement. “I picked this one because my other choice was ‘Luck’ and you know what they say about Luck—‘it’s a flimsy ally.’” I should also mention he is a collector of weapons and a believer in the Force. He talked to my brother about his most favorite Star Wars video games. He’s one of the nicest guys I know.
Some of the other kooks in the family are just plain whacked. But they give me such great material. It’s all up there in my head. One day to be memorialized. Like today. My mother’s cousin (I just make it simple and call him uncle) is also a strong believer in the Force. He’s one of those people who leers at you creepily, just waiting for you to say something he might have an opinion about. And he’ll give it shamelessly. Jerk squad. He caught me unawares and chewed my ear off for about 20 minutes about corporations who have far too many VPs. I don’t even know how we got on that topic.
I was trying hard to play good hostess and walked on into the living room with a tray of Lil’ Smokies in BBQ sauce and said, “Teeny Weenie anyone?” “Yeah thanks, but I have one right here.” Points at crotch. Yikes. My 7-foot-tall physical therapist uncle. Rough crowd.
Thinking about my cousin the Honorable Warrior made me think about a fellow Warrior of note—the Ultimate Warrior. Yes, the WWF Ultimate Warrior. I was way into wrestling as a kid. I even went to a couple matches at the Cow Palace and lost my purse and $5 once. Anyhow, my friend Andrew told me all about how the Ultimate Warrior wrote a comic book called…what else…WARRIOR. By all accounts it was ridiculous and a huge failure. He’d introduce characters that you never saw again. None of the books picked up where the last one left off. It centered around the state of Destrucity which was not only a physical place but a state of being as well. Awesome. Very deep. An excellent and informative article can be found at http://www.i-mockery.com/minimocks/warrior-xmas/. The whole point of this, aside from thinking about all the Warriors I know and am related to, is that in one issue the Warrior talks about getting foked. There’s an editor’s note at the bottom of the page which reads something like “Foked = focused.” I am all about getting foked. Seriously, I have a serious foke-deficiency. I need to make up word like that.