Wednesday, August 16 2000
At around noon I went to my house to meet with a prospective housemate. People have been calling me fast and furious since I finally got my correct phone number into the rather amateurishly-constructed Westside Rentals database. (For evil would-be landlords such as myself this is a completely free service. If you're a hapless would-be tenant, you pay $60/month. I've used both aspects of this service.) Anyway, today's housemate, a guy named John, sounded like a good catch over the phone. He left two messages on my answering service expressing his enthusiasm and in one of these he said he was a teacher over in Beverly Hills.
John showed up on time, which was unusual in and of itself. He's in his mid 20s, medium - sized and sort of, well, Italian. Purely superficially, he definitely looked more my type than your usual random young man; he seemed devoid of any Schtevish qualities. He and his emoish brother wandered around the house while I fielded a phone call from some girl who wanted to know if it was cool for her and another girl to rent a room together. (I told them "Sure!") By the time I rejoined him, it seems John was already sold. Unlike a previous prospect who seemed creeped out by my paintings, John was excited by them. "I'm also a painter!" he declared. I gave him the tour, including the basement garage. Everything he saw further solidified his desire to move in.
"What do I do to move in here?" he asked.
"I've talked to lots of people I don't think I could live with," I said, "but I like you. That's important."
"You want to live with this maniac?" John's emo brother taunted. But then he conceded, "You're already soulmates!"
So later that afternoon I got on the computer and put together a lease agreement based loosely on one I found on the web. According to what he put on his application, John makes almost much money as me. This looks like it's going to work out.
In the evening, a 41 year old woman came by to check out the place. She seemed almost as excited by it as John, but she didn't seem nearly as compatible with my personality. She liked cats, and thus she liked some of my paintings, but she also talked about her furniture being sort of "antiquey" and the fact that she had a couple of 14 year old cats who throw up on occasion. Unlike John, I don't think she's going to appreciate it when I'm being drunk & obnoxious, punk rock or entertaining the betties. But I took her application all the same, since it's always good to have a spare lined up.
I didn't understand how, when Karen was banished tonight on Big Brother, it was still daylight outside, complete with a blue sky. The time was 9:42 pm Pacific Time and the text superimposed over the image read "LIVE." Supposedly this was all taking place only eight or so miles from here, diagonally over the Santa Monica Mountains in Studio City, not exactly another timezone. I felt like I was being deceived. Maybe, I thought, the whole show is a fraud, and it's a lot more obvious than the supposedly faked landing of man on the moon.
After I posted the above paragraph, Mr. Smartypants, aka Silverback, a character residing within my forum, pointed out that everything I see on my West Coast teevee is tape-delayed, no matter what the caption may read. The only live stuff that anyone every sees, as it turns out, is seen in the Eastern Time zone. Odd as this may seem, back when I lived in Redneckistan I was more on the ball than I am now that I'm only a few miles from ground zero of the global entertainment industry.
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