July 27, 2003

What do Lesbians, Thai Food, and Arrested Development have in common? They might get me through the next two years.

Yesterday, Marina and I met up in D.C. to attend the Live on Penn summer music festival. I have to say that, so far, my “get to know the D.C. metro area in the few weeks of summer I have before school starts” project is going quite well. The local lesbians have successfully taken me under their wings and introduced me to more women than I met in the entire year that I lived in San Francisco. My housemates have helped me scout out a Thai restaurant that comes dangerously close to Suriya in tastyness (however, the wait staff and clientele aren’t nearly as delicious). I feel like I have a handle on the Dupont bar scene. I’ve been hiking in the gorgeous Maryland wilderness. And I’ve set up a date (with Marina) to take in another D.C. summer tradition, Screen on the Green. All in all, adjusting to the east coast has been rough on me (just ask Erica…I’ve called her practically every night whining about how much I miss home), but I think things might work out.

Things that have won me over so far…

*It’s beautiful here. I had no idea it was gonna be pretty! It’s like Tacoma, only with things to do!

*Lightning bugs and thunder storms. Amazing.

*The metro. Cheaper and faster than the BART. AND, I can park my car at the metro stop and know that it will probably be there when I get back.

*Crazy shit – example: I was in a cab the other night, driving from one club to another… and I look over, and there’s the freaking White House! Right there, so close I could spit on it. Also, yesterday, while I was watching Arrested Development in concert, the capital building was RIGHT THERE behind them. Talk about cognitive dissonance.

Now, don’t get me wrong. D.C. hasn’t won me over entirely. I still intend to return to SF or Oakland after school, providing that I can secure a job in California. People are bitchy here, and I don’t think I could spend the rest of my life so far from the ocean. But I’m starting to feel ok about the move. And I think maybe, just maybe, I’ll survive the two years away from everything I love.

Posted by j*2the*olie at 02:17 PM

July 22, 2003

Remembering Aaron

My best friend from high school died last Monday morning. I haven’t posted about anything since then, because it felt weird to be writing about other things without acknowledging him… but before now his passing was too close for me to put down on paper. But I got a call from his Mother today while I was at work. And she wants me to take care of some things for his funeral. So I guess I’m using this space to work my way up to the things she asked me to do.

I met Aaron the summer between my sophomore and junior years in high school. We were introduced by a mutual acquaintance that I’d met earlier in the week while protesting the National GOP convention in San Diego. I was sitting on the sidewalk when he walked up and he sat down next to me. After exchanging names and protest stories we decided that it was too hot to be sitting outside and walked to 7-11 to get some Dr. Pepper. By the time our big gulps had been filled, we were friends for life. From that point on, we spent just about every single day together until the day he left to start college at Berkeley.

Aaron was the first friend I had that made me feel safe. From the day I met him, he had the ability to comfort me, regardless of what was going on in my world. He was the first person to teach me that I could create a family out of the people I met along the way. When we both lived in San Diego, we would spend the night together more often than not, and I would fall asleep with my head against his chest, letting his heartbeat lull me to sleep.

Aaron is one of the smartest people I’ve ever known. His poetry and photography are brilliant on levels that I can’t even explain with words alone. In high school, Aaron was constantly winning awards in contests that he never even knew he was part of, because teachers and administrators would recognize his brilliance and enter pieces for him. Despite graduating from high school with high honors, he had no intentions of going to a university. His aunt secretly applied to Berkeley in his name, and informed him of his future plans once he was accepted.

Aaron was incredibly smart, talented, sincere, beautiful, caring, and strong. I have never seen him be mean to anyone…ever…even when they deserved it. Watching him deteriorate over the last year and a half has been one of the hardest things I’ve ever gone through. But he was living it, and he never complained. Even when it was clear that he was incredible pain, he was sending peaceful energy out.

The world has suffered a significant loss this week. I know that I sound biased because I love him. But if you’d known him, you would agree.

Posted by j*2the*olie at 02:39 PM

July 11, 2003


Whew, after a very long 2 weeks (or so) I am FINALLY connected to the internet again. Actually, I'm typing right now on my brand new laptop, which is sitting on my new coffee table in the middle of my new living room without being plugged into anything because our house is completely wireless. Is that hot or what!

But I'm getting ahead of myself. First, I must address "the drive."

Day 1/Dana Point to Las Vegas/5am-10am: Not much to say here. The drive was short, Vegas was hot (and not in a good way), but that was to be expected. I was with my parents so basically we just toured the newer hotels and acted like big tourists.

Day 2/Vegas to Denver/4:30am-7:30pm: Driving in the desert so early in the morning was gorgeous. This is the first time in my life that I've ever understood people like Jason who try to preach the aesthetic virtues of sand and cacti. the horizon was this beautiful lavender color. And I was awed by the types of wildlife that seem to thrive in the middle of nowhere. For future reference, Bjork's Vespertine is the perfect album to listen to in this environment. That said, Bjork can only get you so far. By 10:30, when the sun had been up for a few hours, I was ready to let Jason and Edward Abbey have their freaking desert. The rest of the day sucked big hairy balls (sorry Sean). Utah has to be one of the most pointless states in the nation on so many levels. Don’t get me wrong. A few parts were pretty for about 2.5 seconds. But the fact that I was passing out from heat exhaustion overruled the burnt sienna bluffs.

Day 3/Denver on the 4th of July: On the 4th we stayed with my uncle Jerry and his long-term girlfriend/domestic partner Pilar. The visit was nice for the most part. But really, the most important part is that they have this AMAZING view. I sat up on their roof with Pilar (which was actually unnecessary for the view, but was fun nonetheless). We could see about 9 different fireworks displays from our vantage point. It was kickass.

Day 4/Denver to Des Moines/6:30am-7pm: Once we left Denver, humidity entered into the mix of summer fun. So, in addition to passing out from heat, I was also suffocating due to the fact that the air was too damn thick to breath. But, the scenery certainly picked up. Nebraska and Iowa are actually quite pretty. I waved to Alicia’s parents as I drive through Omaha.

Day 5/Des Moines and Iowa City: My mom and I decided to spend a day in Iowa to visit family and friends. We also went to the cemetery and brought flowers to my grandmother, great grandmother, and great grandfather.

Day 6/Iowa City to Maryland/4am-9pm: Here’s a quick tip… NEVER DRIVE THROUGH INDIANA, ILLINOIS, OR OHIO UNLESS YOU ABSOLUTELY HAVE TO. This was probably the most boring, depressing, and expensive portion of the trip. All of the highways have tolls, so it cost my mom and I about $30 without counting gas just to get out of the Midwest. Pretty lame.

We finally arrived in Maryland on Monday night. My mom and I were exhausted, but we stayed up until 2am talking to my housemate Dan. I have a lot to say about Maryland, but I’ve typed enough for now. More posts to come that are more entertaining and less complaining about heat and driving. Also, I have tons of pictures… but my new comp has windows XP, and apparently the camera I snagged from my father doesn’t like XP. So there are kinks to be worked out. Hope everyone is well. I miss everyone dearly.

Posted by j*2the*olie at 08:11 PM

July 01, 2003

The Journey Begins

Well hello out there! After two long weeks in Orange County, I’m heading out. During my time here I spent about a week and a half in bed with mono. I went to two movies with Scott Miller. I did some quality catching up with old high school friends. Buried my grandmother’s ashes. Got into numerous fights with my father. And revisited San Diego’s gay club scene with my ex-boyfriend.

Late tonight/early tomorrow morning I’ll start out on my trek. My mother and I will be in my car and we are caravanning with my father (who will be hauling the boat). We’re spending tomorrow in Vegas, where it’s supposed to be 107 degrees. Then we’re moving on to Denver where we will spend the 4th of July with my Uncle Jerry. Next we’re driving from Denver to Des Moines. I’m probably most excited about this part because I haven’t been to Des Moines since my other grandmother died 4 years ago. I used to spend my summers there growing up, so it’s gonna be kinda nostalgic. On the 7th, my mom and I are leaving my father in Iowa and attempting to drive the rest of the way to Maryland in one go. This should be my last post for a while because I don’t anticipate having any internet access until I get to my new house… but ya never know.

I’m gonna try to snag my dad’s digital camera so I can be like Gene and post pics of the trip when I get to the other side of the country. Wish me luck! ;)

Posted by j*2the*olie at 08:52 PM