As I sit considering our national debate on where to most efficiently access oil for the near future (attacking Iran vs. attacking the shoreline), I think we are forgetting possibly the best part about oil: it grows on trees! Rather, it is constructed of the dead leaves and lumber and bark of trees, with a little bit of dinosaur blood, mashed together and crushed under the earth and wallah! oil!

I think we can use dead american dreams and mcmansions and other refuse to replace dinosaurs for our next wave of oil, but I don't think we have focused enough on where to get the trees. Obvious answer: the Amazon! Apparently it's a big area with lots of trees and the only people who live there haven't bought anything recently so we they are obviously ready for a change of scenery, a little retail therapy, and a caipirinha on the beach in Rio.

We are America! Land of the free, home of the brave. Apple pie and the last country on earth where people actually love their mothers (well except in Francisco because every family has 2 fathers or 2 mothers and it gets complicated). Anyway, if we really want oil (and we do), the American way is to solve the problem. We tried putting it on a really big government credit card like one of those really big checks you win at casinos and use to donate hospital wings but that doesn't seem to be working. Next step: build our own oil, facilitate the process, make it quicker. To fix the problem, we should speed up the process by which we cut down the amazon so that the oil will be ready that much quicker. Yeah, when I'm president, that place is fucked. So is everywhere else a hippie is planting a tree.

If it really comes down to a choice of offshore drilling and attacking Iran, I think we end up doing the latter. That way, oil companies and defense companies both win, which helps the economy even more . And can't we drill offshore too? Why limit ourselves? We are America! Isn't America about boldness and rising to the occasion?

Oh beautiful for spacious skies
For amber waves of grain


Stealing plums from asian ladies on the bus

My parents were in town last week and my mother told me this story. My mother is a wonderful friendly woman, the sort of person who actually smiles at others and talks to strangers on buses. I thought this story was amusing. Actually, I still giggle when I think about it. The bus from where I live is generally full of yuppies such as myself during primary commute times, and generally full of Asian people from various places else wise. It is San Francisco after all. My mother was raised in New Jersey and her family history is fully German until she married my father, who is 1/2 Mexican and 1/2 Italian. My mother took a Spanish class last year to help her travel a bit in Honduras and Guatemala, but she can only do basic greetings and some numbers. It isn't natural for her to speak Spanish.

Anyway, she was on the bus and it was crowded so she was standing and a seat finally opened up and she offered to an older Asian lady next to her who told my mother to take it. My mother sat down and offered to hold the Asian woman's bag on her lap so she wouldn't have to stand and hold her bag. People can be so nice. As you will see, exactly how my mother offered to hold the woman's bag is a little vague based on the woman's response. My mother showed me what she did, some sort of sign that I'm not sure I would have interpreted as "Excuse me ma'am, but since you were so nice to allow me to sit, allow me to hold your bag for you while we continue on the bus." The woman, instead of saying no or ignoring my mother or putting her bag on my mother's lap, opens her bag and starts putting plums from her bag into my mother's bright yellow bag. My mother takes the plums out and puts them back in the Asian woman's bag in some sort of back and forth that must have been just fantastic for other people on the bus and would seem a bit odd even on a Seinfeld episode. After a little bit of this back and forth, my mother just keeps a few plums and, as she told me, "I kept the plums I didn't want to be rude. Then I ate one so I wouldn't be rude, I know you aren't supposed to eat on the bus..." as if her eating on the bus was the strange part of the story. Then, for some inexplicable reason, my mother thanks the woman with a "Gracias" and after I laughed at that, she just told me it seemed right and natural. I'll have to learn how to say "Thank you" in various Asian dialects and teach my mother for her next trip. Such a cosmopolitan family I have.

Quite frankly, I have no idea what the Asian woman was thinking, if she spoke English, or if she thought my mother was asking her for plums. Big white woman robbing her on the bus perhaps? Regardless, for the rest of the week we kept sending my mother on the bus hoping she could pick up dinner. I'll have to send her on a bus full of Mexicans next visit and tell her not to come back until she has tamales. And the plums? They were great.


not too fat...

So yesterday my potential roommate and I were discussing costs, sleep overs, paintings, noise, etc. and one thing that was discussed was splitting food expenses. She said even though I probably cook at home more often than she does, we can split food 50-50 if she can eat some of the food I cook. Fine. Then she added, "You don't look too fat so you must cook fairly healthy." Or she added, "You aren't fat so you must cook fairly healthy." I think it was the first, but I'm not sure. Those are 2 very different statements, even though they are grammatically pretty close. I need to stop drinking wine and talking, my memory is getting lousy.

And I'm not flat, I'm just fluffy.

I am a rock

So the opportunity has presented itself for me to possibly live with a roommate next year, someone I sort of knew in college in that we had some very good common friends but didn't hang out much. Anyway, this move would be to a nicer, swanky part of town for me, high end apartment, new appliances, all that. It would also, at least for a year, put me in a life and location I'm not sure I'm comfortable with. I can afford it, but for some reason I reject it. I reject lots of things without reason.

Last night, after my maybe roommie and I looked at an apartment, we had dinner at another friends apartment. She lives in a very nice apartment in a very nice part of the city and has a very nice job doing consulting. From her bedroom and her deck she can see the bay. I could live within 2 minutes of the bay and a 20 minute walk from work. It could make me happy. I could also sleep on a foam mattress in Mexico and be happy. Or I could never be happy, really.

When I decided to move to San Francisco, my best friend in Philadelphia asked me point blank if i thought life/me/whatever my issues are would be different in San Francisco. I said no, but I had to try something. I have been here almost a year, and last night these two friends asked me the same thing: do I think moving to Mexico would resolve my issues. I said no, but I have to try something. Whether I move again or stay or wander or drift, there is something blocked inside me, or rather something blocking something else inside me, blocking happiness or comfort. I run more now than I ever have because it let's my mind go free. Otherwise, I have built up so many little walls and mazes in my mind I paralyze myself with overthink. Books and writing are my escape, but like the internet they are an isolated escape.

The question still remains: who am I? What makes me happy? And if it is isolation, or if it is working through whatever issues and being more social, or if it different hobbies, or whatever, how do I define that? I can't.

I was listening to I'm a Rock by Simon & Garfunkel and thought that's me. Is that song supposed to be ironic? My bible? A warning? It connected in a way that didn't make me comfortable, just like I felt lousy when I left the dinner yesterday.

At one point in my life I would have responded at some point in the open dinner conversation analysis of my life that being my friend means never questioning my life. I think being open to the discussion is a step for me, but it still sort of pissed me off. But they were trying to help, just like my friend back in Philadelphia was trying to help. I don't know how to accept help. My boss thinks I have trust issues at work. I have trust issues everywhere. I have lots of issues everywhere, rolling around my head like balls in bingo parlor, and I never scream bingo and win. Or have i won? What is winning? I realize at some level that winning in life and losing in life are both temporary and, ultimately, pointless. It's only life right? I have only one, but I don't know what to do with it, I am afraid of it and fascinated by it, but I treat like some abstraction I can think through and win rather something I need to experience by living. It's bizarre. I know somewhere inside me it's not right, but I also don't seem to be able to move on. Philadelphia, Mexico, Honduras, Boston, San Francisco, all wonderful places. It's not the place.
But I'm not sure really what it is, and quite frankly, I'm sort of tired of thinking about it. And whenever I have to explain myself, I sound like an ass. I don't think I'm an ass, but i sound like one. Maybe I don't need to change, maybe I just need better PR.

I need people. Or a person. I'm not picky.



If there was ever a reason I wish I had Tivo, and there aren't many, today's Wimbledon final between would have been it. I thought the final yesterday between the amazing Williams sisters was great, but the men's final today was the most exhilarating sporting event I can remember. I thought last year they played a great final, but this year was much better. Just incredible.

If I could play just one country club sport besides golf, it would definitely be tennis. Way better than croquet.