friday night, one week ago, I went to the sins party at jonathan's. I showered before that party. I had a nice time talking with people. a lot of stuff that could have been uncomfortable went very well - not just for me. I had some discussion with a girl I'd just met. the discussion turned into a good-natured disagreement. the good-natured disagreement turned into a bet. we conferred with an expert to settle the bet. what did I win? she had to give her boyfriend a blowjob in the car on the way home that night. later that night, I tucked in a couple of friends who were making out (for the first time with each other?).
saturday morning, I got coffee with some friends. then I got a massage. after a little hanging out, I went shopping at osh for some poi supplies. as I walked around around, looking for fire extinguishers, I got the call...
two of my best friends broke up and I should come provide support. that's largely what I've been doing since then. in two states. between that call saturday afternoon and last night - thursday, I've spent all but a few hours anywhere but by the side of one of those two friends. 8 of those few were work on monday. none of the remaining hours were spent showering. we talked, cuddled, held, gave affection, hugged, denied, got angry, bargained, etc.
I had an interesting dream saturday night... it opens with me on a rope ladder. in a chinned up position off the side of a skyscraper. looking out over a huge crowd of people on the roof of the building. packed, shoulder to shoulder, 200? people atop the building. the broken up friend was on my back, piggyback style. the building didn't look anything like the bank I banked at when I was 10. but it was that bank. earlier in the dream, my friend had been in the bank opening a new account. the new accounts guy looked a bit like drew carey.
some guy I don't know has a microphone and is speaking to the huge crowd. after a bit, I realize he's just introducing the speaker that everyone is on that rooftop to hear. when he's done, the real speaker comes out. it's the new accounts drew carey guy. but now he's wearing a 6 foot wide afro wig and a bandana. kind of jimi hendrix style - but still looking like drew carey. everyone in the crowd starts pumping their fist and chanting hippie banker! hippie banker! hippie drew doesn't have a mic. so I realized that someone with a mic would need to repeat what he was saying... that way everyone would be able to hear. conveniently, my friend had a mic. I was all excited to do the repeating and she didn't really feel like doing it anyway. so I snatched the mic from her. hippie drew started to speak. the chanting died down.
I could tell what he was talking about, but not the exact words. he was detailing all the terms of the account my friend had just opened. interest rates, per check charges, atm fees, substantial penalty for early withdrawl. after a couple of sentences, everyone turned to me to repeat what he'd just said. as I didn't understand the exact words, I gave a blank stare and said "what?" like the stoned kid from westerberg high in heathers during the lunchtime poll. hippie drew tried again... he spoke some more - giving more details about the account. I still couldn't understand the exact words. so I said, "I'm sorry. I just can't understand you" and that's the last part of the dream that I remember. have at, dream interpretters.
sunday was more of the same. sunday night, we went to a hookah lounge.
as an aside from the grieving, I must say that I am now very fond of hookah lounges. the music wasn't too loud. the hookah and the smoke therefrom were both very aesthetically pleasing. I can smoke there! the mild tobacco combined with the friendly smoking methodology of the hookah added up to me being able to smoke without discomfort. I cannot smoke worth a hill of beans... it always hurts my throat and lungs. but not this time. it was just kind of misty and comfortable and sweet tasting and cool looking.
I already had plans to fly to new york on monday. sunday, I told my friend that she was coming with me to new york to help get away. the timing worked out... according to jet blue, I got her the last seat on the plane. later sunday, we hung out with boymaenad, djahari and lizzie. we slept at threefireisland. those of you that know my feelings toward traffic and commuting must realize the dedication I was dedicating to my friend... I mean, I slept on the wrong side of the 405 on a school night.
monday I worked. it was tough... I was thinking of both of these friends. and I had to scramble at work. the day before I go out of town is always scrambley at work. lo - so much to do. but I did it. monday after work, I had a poi lesson. I lit them on fire. spinning fire all around your head is the coolest sound in the world. then we reconvened monday after fire. we got coffee with a friend of hers, who, on parting told me to take good care of her. we hung with jaso and teaa et al and watched simpsons. then to chicago (the movie). she had to spend most of the movie outside the theater. thinking, writing, talking on the phone, etc. I spent most of the time out there with her. as an aside, I liked the movie a lot better than the theatrical chicago I saw a few years ago.
then we were whisked away to the airport by a very generous michael. nice of him to drive us. to ontario. in the pouring rain. thanks.
as has become the custom, I was stopped by airport security and thoroughly searched. they opened my bag and gave me skeptical stares. they hand-examined my "professional" film. at least I didn't have to take off my shoes, unlike my counterpart. though both her and my shoes had flames on them. per custom, I will probably NOT be scrutinized on the way home. miraculously, we were seated together on the FULL plane. who flies to new york on a monday night red-eye? yeah, well who cuts stones.
we got to new york tuesday morning, got a cab to harlem, greeted my brother, and all three of us took a nap. when we woke up, we ate at my favorite restaurant in new york. its a rastafarian vegan place in harlem call Strictly Roots. if you're in new york, it's worth the trip up to 120th and 7th. actually, no matter where you are, it's worth the trip to 120th and 7th for this place. try the "badman" - it's what jamba juice wants to be. we saw bowling for concubine. I'd been meaning to see that flick since forever. I was harshly reminded why I don't watch the news. we were treated to acapella karaoke by the next table at some place we at after the movie. it was ok. I was unimpressed - by the karaoke and the food.
wednesday, my brother was a bit under the weather. so my friend and I wandered new york. we started in times square at a place called tkts. it's like webtix in LA. they offer halfpriced tickets to fast-approaching live shows which have yet to sell out. we got tickets to de la guarda for that night. we wandered and found the home of the bindlestiff family cirkus. unfortunately, that show JUST ended. I would have wanted to see it in new york. I've only seen them in LA - they're from new york. we ate at a really good, quaint little place several blocks from times square. we were joined by lolamae. my brother was too ill to attend the show that night. so we took lola. the show rocked the casbah. if you have the chance, see it. leave your inhibitions at the door and wear something comfy, but not too warm. take advantage of the coatcheck. don't be afraid to eat the metal balls. then we went back to lola's hotel room for chatting. I took a few pictures. picture taking is a much bigger deal/pain in the ass when it's cold. I've hardly taken any photos this trip.
after lola's hotel, we went to a drugstore to get cold medicine. then to the subway to return to harlem. we took the train the wrong way and ended up in queens. then we went back. we saw a rat in the subway. we gave up and took a cab. I am pretty sure that we had it figured out when we gave up. the next train was going to be the leap home.
we stayed up and talked with my brother for a long time. then went to sleep.
thursday, my brother had some work to do. so we trundled down to soho with him. he worked, we wandered. then more work elsewhere... so we wandered grand central station. then back to my brother's place for a quick nap before time for my friend to head off to the airport. after bargaining with the cabbie and seeing her off, we had dinner at strictly roots. then to an open mic night at columbia. people rapped, sang, waxed poetic and joked about life, love, bush, the war. it was nice. then we hung out with a friend of his from school. we talked a lot before bed. then fell asleep.
today has been uneventful. our mom sent us some of her famous armenian cake. I ate cereal with only 4 ingredients. I took a shower. I read a bunch. I wish I could be there more for my friend. I wish I could be there more for her ex. I wish I could be there more for teaa. I wish I'd taken more showers this past week. although that's not such a big deal. nobody mentioned that I was stinky.
everybody: it's going to be ok. this isn't going to kill you. happy birthday, anna.