I got sad today reading a lighthearted, funny blog by someone who seems to be part of a happy, intelligent couple. And another blog by that person's partner.

I felt better when I realized that tons of people must invent blogs written by imaginary girlfriends/boyfriends. And maintain them diligently, and fabricate pictures, all to keep up the illusion and stave off the abyss.

I mean, that's what "I" would do.

things i like about my neighborhood, which i am making note of now, in case i leave it....

The proximity of various excellent dumplings.

The quiet.

That Indonesian place with the beef rendang plate and the avocado shake drizzled with what might be Hershey's chocolate syrup.

That internet cafe with the stunning teenagers that reminds me of cafes on Telegraph in the early 90's.

The deserted nursery next door.

The cheap delicious Vietnamese food.

The clear and sensible positioning of the library, police station, city hall.

The couple that has screaming fights across the street, to break up the quiet.

The neon urban angst of the foot massage parlors along Valley Blvd.

The sunsets framed by the electrical towers.

The things you can find in the supermarkets.

I don't appreciate....

...that when I start pumping my $3.53-per-gallon at the gas station, the little video screen starts playing some nonsense welcoming video and a disembodied robot voice says, "Hi! Welcome to Shell! Nice to see you!"

What exactly do they mean, "SEE you?" The gas station security cameras see you? Some kind of surveillance satellite logs your position? The attendant has you in a laser sight? It's a talking video monitor, for crying out loud. Who is actually seeing who? There's friendly, and there's paranoia-inducing. I'd just as soon take the non-talking small-talk-impaired old-school gas pump myself, I dunno if that's showing my age, or what.

...On an unrelated note, today is one of those exceedingly rare days when I really wish I was in Texas.

this week's funniest casino dialogue that will not make sense to normal people...

SCENE: A California casino. The pan-9 table.

Mama loses a hand.

MAMA (screams): Change Dealer!

The dealer is stoic. Mama loses another hand.


And again.


FLOORMAN: Why don't you just bring your OWN dealer...?