Life's our oyster and we're gonna suck that bitch down with a champagne chaser.

  • Behavioral Therapist
  • MA Developmental Psychology, Columbia
  • BS Psychobiology/ French, UCLA

  • Movies to See:
    Mission Impossible
    A Dangerous Method

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    The Life & Times of Tim

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    Game of Thrones
    by George R.R. Martin

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    El Camino

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    Newt Gingrich

  • Group of People to Despise:
    Fox & Friends


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Tuesday, December 26, 2006  
Will Work for Job
It is clearly and embarassingly obvious to me that I have absolutely no work ethic. I mean, look how long it took me to crank out the epic that was the Parisian Chronicles. I intended for it to be done before this school year started. Not so, Captain Procrastinator. It took me about 20 weeks to finish the damn thing, about 4 times as long as I was in Paris. Now this might not be a product of having no work ethic and merely the result of being a lazy procrastinator who may or may not be preoccupied with other activities. Be that as it may, looking around at the movie theater today, seeing guys not much older than me working on Christmas rather than being with their families made me feel a little embarassed.

A couple of weeks ago I went in to be interviewed at the Fine Arts Theater by my apartment building, looking for a small part-time job for next quarter. The theater at the time was rented out by a Christian Science Church so I was pretty much scared for my life while I was filling out the application. I was mildy unsettled when, while listing my non-existant references, I heard a voice bellowing through a speaker talking about some guy named "Lord" constantly. But I stuck it out. I talked to the guy in charge of hiring lazy, unemployed college students in his desheveled office and was promptly hired, much to my surprise. He told me that I would be contacted the following week for some training of some sort. I guess tearing tickets and selling Milk Duds entails a 3 hour training session. Unfortunately, the man wanted me to come in for his so-called training the night of the U$C game, in a black bowtie, dress pants and dress shoes no less. As a result, I was stuck in Westwood watching couches burn until 5:30 AM so was not able to attend the Now you may be thinking, "Stop being such a pompous ass. You need to attend training for any job, no matter how 'busy' you claim to be." Well, kind observer, I do agree. So I called the man, let's call him Flod, the following morning and left him a message apologizing for my not attending the training and would love to reschedule. I added a small footnote saying that I would not be able to attend any sort of training that week because it was finals week...but after that I was free. Suffice it to say, Flod has not returned my call.

I've been advised to call the man back, but the thing is is I can't attend any training this week either because I'll be in San Francisco for the Emerald Bowl and if I tell Flod that, I'll be fired once more. Maybe I'll swallow my pride and give Flod another ring when I return, but for now, I remain unpaid and unemployed. The truth is is I have a "job" as a research assistant in the Psych dept. But as my mom politely stated, "That's not a f@&!ing job." I fear she may be right. So I applied to tutor the young ones, something I've done in the past with some degree of success. I wouldn't be as worried about this as a spoiled Beverly Hills brat, but the truth is is that this exact same thing happened three years ago my freshman year at Best Buy where I was "let go" for not being able to attend training. And so followed my extremely fruitful boycott of Best Buy for about 3 months when I realized Circuit City was a far scarier place than Best Buy. What a man, I am.

As graduation looms, it seems as if everyone is employed in some form besides me. Whether I'm actively avoiding it or am just incapable of even starting a job is uncertain. When the only references on my resume are Blockbuster Customer Service Representative for 3 months one summer and an unpaid self-defense instructor for 70 bajillion years, prospects of climbing up the American Dream ladder are grim. I guess the only solution is to stay in school forever. Get into a graduate school and when you graduate be truly unemployed, without academics to fall back on. I always knew the Classifieds section of the newspaper served a purpose other than to line birdcages. And people wonder why generation X-ers (am I generation X? I can never remember) think the future is barren and bleak.

Oh, what a life we lead.

12:13 AM


Monday, December 18, 2006  
The Parisian Chronicles: Part X - Farewell to the City of Lights
I know what you're thinking. These god forsaken chronicles have been drawn out far too long. They should've ended a month or so after I came back. It would make a lot more sense that way. Unfortunately, there are very few times in my life where I make any sense at all. I'm surprised I even remember many of the details about the trip that I'm writing about. And so the chronicles continue on, hopefully to a conclusion, four months after the actual events took place. It gave a topic for this website to be dedicated to for a few months, which is accomplishment enough. And now, without further ado... let's get this damn thing over with.

The crescendo to the final farewell to Paris began with the much-hyped soccer match between the language and global studies programs. We had been practicing sparsely throughout the trip and it all came to a head on a rainy day in some seedy neighborhood in Paris, on a concrete field. We were each assigned a French philosopher to be during the match. (No we're not dorks. Yes we are geeks.) I was assigned the role of Rousseau, drawn in glorious fashion on my plain white t-shirt. Suffice it to say, Rousseau played a pivotal role in the match...namely kicking the shins of the opposing team members. My subtle tribute to Zidane perhaps. I'm a badass, what can I say.

We won by a score of like 13-9...oh wait, that was the score of the game where we BEAT $C! (Had to get that in there...HA!) Actually the score was something like 16-2. But they were sore losers and wanted a rematch. A rematch that barely anyone went to however one of our comrades broke his nose in that game, which was very unfortunate, given that we were 4 days away from leaving.

The following day, I would finally get to go to the restaurant I had been dying to dine in since I had arrived in Paris. (Perhaps an international flair is in need for your Zagat blog, Mr. Dehar). The Relais de Venise, or Entrecote, home to the most sublimely delicious steak and fries, as well as the most delectable desserts, on earth. "Steak and fries" sounds so generic, but it's more than steak and fries. It's a lifestyle.

The wait in line takes about 45 minutes but it is well worth it. The waitresses, dressed in French maid outfits, scribble down on the tables how many steaks for the table and what desserts we desire.

How they can decipher their chicken scratch (or poulet scratch, I suppose) is a mystery to me, but they're all geniuses in my opinion. I fall under the classification of "godless liberal" by Ann Coulter standards, but those slabs of meat and chocolate profiteroles made me see some sort of deity. Perhaps it was god. Perhaps it was the head chef. I just know one thing for certain. God is in the sauce...deus ex...sauce.

I don't know what they put in that green sauce but holy Moses man of the mountain, it is forged from the sweat off of Zeus' brow. It's that good. After paying the rather steep bill, we were on our way, satisfied and delerious.

The following day, we had our final class in the Jardin de Luxembourg. It consisted of oral presentations and skits, in some cases, so we thoroughly embarassed ourselves in front of a somewhat wide audience. But the setting was picturesque so we didn't really care.

Yes I took a picture while I was giving my own presentation. After the last class, shopping for souveniers and gifts basically took up our final days. I bought an insane amount of French comics and candy and strange special requests from my mom. Such as a kilo of a special kind of salt that came in what amounted to a ziploc bag. That was a joy to get through customs. In addition, a lot of sappy last goodbyes were made to things like the heavenly bakeries, cheese shops and street markets. Oh yeah and we had to like study for our finals or something. I guess we were being graded for the classes we were taking. Who knew?

Even sappier goodbyes were made to places that were made a part of our daily lives during our stay in Paris. Our Shitadines rooms, the laundromat, the restaurant and bar we would hang out, the metro at and, of course, the Eiffel Tower.

Finally, we were done with our finals, as half-assed as our studying was, and was time for our final party in the hotel and on the bateau mouche along the Seine. The celebrating began soon after our finals and our final rounds of shopping. The TAs joined in on our fun as well as the majority of the people in the program. Other than knowing where we were at the time, not many of us can clearly remember what happened that night. There were some people who had never been intoxicated before and weren't used it, there were spills, there was yelling and there was laughing. And this was all before we had to go on the boat...with our professors.

I remember yelling that we were going to miss the boat and my TA, rather bozzed out himself, telling me that we had plenty of time. Why I was fretting so much about missing the boat I don't know. I also yelled at another girl for not hugging me. And then I yelled at and threw a glass of half full glass of champagne at one of my friends, who then threw a full glass of champagne at me. I swear I'm not a violent drunk. Just...passionate...and affectionate. When it was time to leave for the boat, it was kind of embarassing because very few of us could walk in a straight line. Also, I smelled extremely boozey because of the glass of champagne that was spilled all over me. I took the deoderant of our room party host and rubbed all over me. I then smelled like a boozehound who fell in a vat of Old Spice and cologne. Perfect image for our professors to remember us by.

The metro ride was all kinds of interesting mainly because one of our more lightweight companions threw up on said metro and scared away a horde of native Parisians. He then ran off the metro at the wrong stop and continued vomiting. He would eventually catch up with us, throroughly embarassed. After we made sure he was ok, we totally laughed at him. The boat ride was meant as a final farewell to Paris by night, as well as providing us numerous opportunities for some final photo ops.

As the boat ride came to an end, and we waited by the river, deciding whether to stay out all night or head back to the hotel, a sense of saddness and elation shrouded the experience. It was very difficult to part with the city and the people we had grown to love but at the same time, the entire voyage had been so rewarding and fulfilling that it was foolish to be regrettful about anything. That being said, I won't lie and say that tears weren't shed amongst some of us. We made one last promenade around the familiar streets before heading to the metro. Still slightly buzzed, I nearly picked a fight with two sets of sleazy Parisians who were saying rather obscene things to my female companions. I don't know if I gained some sort of newfound self-confidence in Paris, or whether all my inhibitions were shot as a result of the booziness. Either way, it was another unique experience that I had acquired.

We hung out in each others rooms for a while after we got back, not knowing whether we should go to sleep or not. We would eventually part ways late into the night. In our room, after turning off the lights, my roommate started laughing. Then I started laughing. And we couldn't stop. Because he was the one who threw up on the metro, on several unsuspecting Parisians. It was pretty fuckin' hilarious and we couldn't stop cracking up.

I would get half an hour of sleep before waking up to leave for the airport.

Before my trip, I was nervous as all hell. Nervous about what I do not know. I guess breaking my comfort zone is not something I do often. But this trip was one of the best decisions I had ever made and led to countless memorable experiences and valuable friendships. Paris was built up in my mind as some sort of untouchable ideal. After finally experiencing it on my own, I realized that Paris on its own is a beautiful place, but without the experiences we give to it, it is meaningless. The City of Lights and Love remains a part of me forever, as a result. And I miss the hell out of it. But I know it's still there waiting for me to tackle it again. And when I do, I know it'll give me a means to experience life in new and unique ways, once again.

Vive la France!

5:00 AM


Saturday, December 02, 2006  
Interlude to the Parisian Chronicles - UCLA School Spirit Notification
So it's that time of year again. It's to rally the troops to try to beat those lousy trojans over at $C. This may very well be my last game as a UCLA Marching Band member, and I have never been witness to their putrid team losing to our noble Bruins. I'm optimistic that if nothing else, our band will truly annihalate whatever "band" that school across town claims to have. They're rancid. They're mean-spirited. They're douchebags. They play their 3 songs for their rapist/ex-con football players thinking that they're actually a marching band while all they are is the ridiculous flailing horde of barbarians. Call me crazy, but to name your mascot after a fallen empire is the definition of stupid. Anyway, enough ranting. If I haven't convinced you yet of why U$C sucks so this.



2:17 AM


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