I always sit in Chuy’s section, granted he could spell it Chewy, but I’ve never asked. I ordered chili sides the first few times I went and got trapped in that being my usual order because there is something tangibly awkward when someone asks you “the usual?” and you say “no”
Then the bowling alley diner became the opposite of awkward and I would go at least once a week with a book or friend and drink way too much caffeine at 6pm because I was just out of college and invincible. I was also in a new neighborhood where I didn’t know many people and on my first bout with being relatively self-sufficient (i.e. poor). I could get a good cooked meal for $10 with tax and tip and sit next to a row of old men and a strange and talkative younger doctor at the counter, who were friendly faces and largely the same faces (night after night, not same faces as each other). Oh, also, and a lot of overweight friendly cops sitting with sides of ranch dressing.
I feel like this whole thing would be amiss without mentioning the one-armed long-haired chain-smoking league bowler I would pass on the way in.
As someone who largely prefers books to conversations with strangers, I kept to myself and my waiter friends and I loved it. Over time I got busier with comedy, hanging out with my cat and losing my college 20, so my visits had largely slowed down. Last week I drove by and there were 100 people protesting the eviction and as a Berkeley grad I was hoping for some important societal change. Turns out the local AMF is effectively evicting them at the end of the month and replacing it with a supper club that I hope no one in my neighborhood ever gives his or her patronage.
Is to eat more vegetables because I feel like it will help me eat healthier and it will also help me celebrate my mental age.
Previous resolutions of mine have been to use less plastic (success) and not sharing any George Takei memes or photos on Facebook (super success)
What are your’s? Warning, if it inspires me, I may join you!
2K14, let’s do this!
There is something very jarring about receiving a phone call from an unknown number, extra terrifying if it just says “Out of Area” because you don’t even get a zip code to hypothesize about. It’s like a knock on your door from a burly dude wearing a mask , except that you’re armed with an “end call” button instead of a hair straightener heated up to 470 degrees.
I have been a lifetime phone phobic and also a phoneyphobic, but that’s not a tale for the now. I guess I like to have face-to-face conversations with people.
If you are a “typical” American, I imagine most calls from new-2-you phone numbers are from the dry cleaner, the credit card company or telemarketers. As an actor who is a believer in buying hand wash OK clothes, my calls are a bit different. It could be a call saying I booked something, that a CD called my agent to say that I suck (hope this never happens) or it could be my vet saying my cat’s check-up was great. Actors are people with cats, too.
An unknown number can be a game-changer, and that’s a little bit terrifying, but probably not as terrifying as my home defense system. Note to self: get a baseball bat.
Happy Holidays from Venice!
Two weeks ago there was a street festival in Venice sponsored by GQ on one of our main drags that GQ magazine dubbed “the coolest block in America.”
I don’t consider myself more judgmental than the American norm, but I just needed to see all the coiffed hair, smell cologne to help my figure out what France smells like and gawk at shoes that cost way more than my Christmas shopping budget.
Well, we went, and everyone was nice and we had a ton of fun. So maybe I am a douchebro for being judgmental? If I judge myself for being a douchebro for being judgmental, does it cancel out?
Anyways, my December resolution is to be less judgmental. But being “observational” is totally OK. I also reserve the right to judge evil people because, not cool.
Still not sure what France smells like. Bread?
There is one thing about comedy that makes my skin itch. Neutrality. Like khaki pants and dry turkey sandwiches, I just gotta ask why.
This could be my Berkeley brainwash, but I think the mass rewards of formula and structure lead to a lot of mass boring (i.e. almost every buddy cop comedy, except for the one with Jimmy Fallon and Queen Latifah because what). I would say that all the people who have had the largest impact on me as a writer and performer are very unapologetic about the lens in which they view the world. I find that so refreshing, inspiring and captivating. Hubert Selby Jr., Lucille Ball, a scientologist wanting to give me a stress test. All fascinating. May we never settle!
Self-identity nouns should be given great weight. Like more weight than those things our grandparents used to keep papers from flying away on a desk of whichever mid-century school of design was their preference.
One of my generation’s most gratuitous self-identity nouns is “foodie.” I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen the following Twitter bios:
Writer, Dog-Lover, Foodie
Packers Fan, Aspiring Cellist, Foodie
Stripper, Pop Star, Foodie
Died last Tuesday, Foodie
You know that really intense almost physical reaction you have to seeing a cute kitten or puppy? The opposite of that
I feel like one needs to reach a certain level of commitment and experience to something before using it as a self-identity word. I’m not saying you need to publish a best-selling novel or land an internship at an easy beach-read mag like The Economist, but if writing is what your soul breathes, you are a writer.
I read this article that introverts are more likely than extroverts to only identify as one thing. So this could be my personality dictating my opinion (OMG BRAIN, FREE WILL), but I think in order to be brilliant at anything you have to be pretty aggressive about it, leaving little time for being considerably above average at anything else. This means that maybe we can only truly have one self-identity noun that is skill-based at a time. That means that maybe we shouldn’t waste it on “foodie” unless your soul craves good food above all else.
As a side note, I appreciate good food. It’s just not my word.
Sometimes I might think in sevens. A top five list would be oppressive and a top 10 list would be phony. Today, I think in ones.
You just discovered music a few years ago and you’re trying to figure out your type before you make any regrettable decisions. Which band is special enough? Will it be memorable? I hope I don’t walk out with PBR on my brand new white Adidas. There is something pure about your first concert and the associated questions you ask yourself before making a decision.
The summer between 7th and 8th grade, I went with my best friend and her family to drop off her older sister off at art camp. Her older sister was super cool (spoiler alert: she now dates a bald politician). She had a purple room when I had to beg my parents for years to paint mine light yellow. She had magazines I had never heard of haphazardly tossed onto shelves that were not necessary straight or symmetrical. My room had American Girl books on a fancy wood shelf/desk combo that matched my sleigh bed and my nightstands. She drove a used car named Manuel because everything in it was manual. I would carefully plot what three songs I would listen to on my Zune during the morning carpool.
But above all, she played the cello. Twelve year-old me thought that was rad, college graduate me is decidedly less sure about that opinion. When your sibling isn’t necessarily the coolest, sometimes you gotta live vicariously through your best friend’s sibling.
On the ride there, my best friend and I were talking about how excited we were to see Weezer the following month and how cool and experienced we would sound when we got to high school. Concerts? Yeah, we got to them all the time. Maybe we would even be able to give advice about them.
We arrived at the camp and looked around in awe and jealousy. There was a family dinner after everyone settled in to thank the parents for their help and to serve as a goodbye. The dinner consisted mostly of the art campers trying their hardest to avoid eating dinner with their families, like most solid goodbyes.
The evening culminated with a surprise concert of a mediocre four piece jazz band. I spent the whole time thinking, noooooooo — does this count? I never expected my first time to be at art camp. Is having Kool-Aid on my shoes somehow worse than cheap beer? Will I be rewarded for sitting through this with dessert?
I am still not sure if that first time counted, but at minimum it was memorable
Because G-d threw one my way! I hope that didn’t sound too dirty :/
I’ve been keeping busy lately. I started studying Stanislavski and I love it, I booked and shot my first TV Pilot and one of my biggest comedic influences started following me on Twitter (!!). But now I am feeling all this pressure to tweet well, but I could have worse problems — like starvation or a flat tire on the way to a job interview or sneezing during a make out scene or something. Above is a picture with way bad lighting of me and the pilot’s lead. She’s rad! I’ve also started reading some plays by Steve Martin and they are terrific. I would love love love to put one on someday. Now time to keep on working. Happy July 4th everyone! Try to do one thing this week that is out of your comfort zone (but in a positive way, mooning people ain’t cute)
Also, anyone have any good July 4th recipes? My mom’s birthday is the 5th, so I want to make something special