The continuing saga of one girl’s plight with unemployment…(read vol I,  vol IIvol IIIvol IVvol V vol VIvol VIIvol. VIII vol IX, vol X and vol XI)

Over the last month a few people have started to ask me things like: “When’s the new Bureaucracy for Breakfast coming?!” or: “Where’s the new blog? I’m waiting!” I’m sure in their minds these questions seem light-hearted, positive, and encouraging. The issue is that my answer for the last few weeks has been, “Uh… I have no idea.” That’s kinda scary since there’s that looming monster known as writer’s block that actually looks and feels to me like the looming monsters from Where the Wild Things Are – only more frightening and dangerous and cruel and violent. Granted, it’s better to be asked these questions than to have people say, “I read your blog. You ever think about looking into Human Resources, like your dad suggested? He seems wise.” Now, there are probably people out there who think the Human Resources path would be a smart move for yours truly, but so far they’re keeping their pie holes shut and that’s just dandy with me. I’ve got a thick-ish skin, but it’s not rawhide, people.

So as I’ve been walking around Los Angeles secretly panicking about my lack of a new topic for this blog or column or whatever you wanna call it (I haven’t braved another meditation class though I am sure that would provide a gushing torrent of material), I decided to face the looming monster known as writer’s block head-on and just write anyway. I don’t know how else to conquer the beast. And besides, here we are! I do have something cooking in the shark cage diving department (stay tuned for a totally worthwhile and awesome Kickstarter campaign coming to a… website near you!) but for now I merely offer to you some random vignettes, which have absolutely nothing to do with each other and have very little to do with unemployment. There is no grand theme. These musings won’t change your life, like Oprah or Nietzsche or a pyramid scheme. But my goal is always just to make you smile so if that happens, these useless ramblings will be worth it in my mind. So I now hereby present to you:

Useless Ramblings That I Hope Will Conquer My Scary Writer’s Block and Make You Smile

Hit the Jump to continue reading Bureaucracy for Breakfast vol. XII: Writer’s Block & Other Useless Ramblings…

Does a trillion dollars actually exist and if so, why is the economy of THE WORLD so god-awful and why does debt exist? Please explain…

A Trillion Dollars: I don’t watch a lot of TV, but while I’m cleaning or looking for non-existent jobs or trying not to think about my writer’s block I usually have it on CNN or the Food Network. The Food Network relaxes me, unless of course it’s that living breathing nails-on-a-chalkboard Rachel Ray or that Stepford Wife Sandra Lee (this woman coordinates her outfits to match her “tablescapes”), in which case I flip back to CNN with a speed that would make Superman beg for lessons. But give me Bobby Flay or Paula Dean or Iron Chef and I’m a happy girl. Anyhoo… recently while I was half listening to CNN I heard grown adults use the term “a trillion dollars.” I stopped my Cinderella sweeping to watch. I waited for them to erupt into peals of laughter afterwards. That would be the rational thing to do, right? Giggle? Guffaw? Fall on the floor roaring? But these suit-and-tie clad stiffs stayed as serious as… suit-and-tie clad stiffs. How can adults actually use the term “a trillion dollars” and not crack up at a time like this? It’s like Anderson Cooper saying, “I’m in Afghanistan and the military is thinking of implementing unicorns and satyrs as the next generation of defense,” without blinking. Does a trillion dollars actually exist and if so, why is the economy of the world so god-awful and why does debt exist? Please explain. I was spouting off about my obsession with this concept of a trillion dollars to a very smart surgeon friend of mine recently. She looked up to the heavens (or, actually, up to the nasty-ass ceiling of our fave dive bar, the glorious Sports Harbour — which really is spelled that way because… it’s that fancy) and asked, with total and utter seriousness, “Where do you go from a trillion? A dillion?” I bring this last bit up only because I’ve played countless games of Trivial Pursuit with this smart-as-shit surgeon friend and she always makes me feel like a dumb-dumb, so when she said, “a dillion?” I felt really, really smart! The end.

Cheating on my Coffee Shop: Not long after I was laid off I discovered that the coffee shop is the unemployed person’s best friend. It’s very important to leave your home and get out into the world instead of stewing in your pajamas wondering where all the jobs are, and coffee shops make perfectly good pretend offices. Since about April I made a certain spot in Santa Monica my second home, and wrote for countless hours, met random people, had a moment with Keanu Reeves (which is a sad, sad story in its own right), admired Josh Brolin from afar, and lent my laptop charger to the hot ex-wife from Californication. Hey, this IS Los Angeles people, where movie stars totally matter. Around July, a fellow I like to call my Coffee Shop Nemesis started frequenting my pretend office. He yapped on the phone in his thick Long Island accent incessantly about who-knows-what, and was so obnoxious I couldn’t even drown him out by blasting the Amelie soundtrack on my iPod. He kept asking if I wanted to “go halfsies” on sandwiches. Every time he strolled in I braced myself. A weird, crazy-eyed older lady also started coming around a lot during that time. I’m cool with weird, but this woman had LONG — like Rapunzel long — frizzy dishwater blond hair and she always came in carrying a rolled up newspaper and a large comb. She also wore her frizzy mane with only one side braided and the other side free and frizzing in the wind. This would all be fine except she also talked loudly to herself while combing the free side of her hair as we were all trying to work and drink coffee and eat things that really shouldn’t have rogue strands of a strange lady’s hair flying into them. Call me Larry David but it kinda grossed me out. Anyhow, last month I decided it was time for a change so I cheated on my coffee shop and ever since have been frequenting another, better spot. A few weeks after I embarked on my new affair, I ran into Coffee Shop Nemesis in the street. I felt a tinge of guilt when he asked where I’d been. He then told me he’d started a Facebook group called Novellamas for people who frequented the old spot and as soon as I learned about this new development I felt totally certain I’d made the right move. So what if I cheated? My new coffee shop and I are very happy together, and there ain’t no Facebook groups and errant strands of hair to cramp our romance.

Now there’s no nudity and I’m no ageist, and lord knows I think it’s great that people over sixty still get it on, but this is the most awkward, disturbing, and – did I say awkward – sex scene ever filmed…

A Sex Scene I Wish I Hadn’t Seen: Sometimes, when I’m sad or tired, I like to cuddle up with a silly, dumb Hollywood flick that I never would watch if I were in a rational state of mind. I’m not unique in this, I realize. So recently I found myself so utterly tired one day (babysitting a soon to be two-year-old has that effect) I flipped on the TV and saw that Something’s Gotta Give was on. It’s an older movie, and although I love Diane Keaton and Jack Nicholson (and my guy Keanu of course) I never had any desire to see this movie. But suddenly, since my brain was as mushy as Fatty Arbuckle’s ass, I wanted nothing more than to watch this exact movie. I was stoked! Nancy Meyers directing an AARP love story. Sweet salvation. I settled in and it was funny enough and I was proud of Keanu for doing such a bang up job playing a doctor, but then something awful happened. Jack Nicholson and Diane Keaton had a sex scene. Now, there’s no nudity and I’m no ageist (at least, I didn’t think I was) and lord knows I think it’s great that people over sixty still get it on, but this is the most awkward, disturbing, and — did I say awkward — sex scene ever filmed! He cuts her turtleneck off with a pair of scissors (this is NOT hot it’s… awkward) and instead of sexy music and lingerie and candles the scene involves a blood pressure pump, eyeglasses, Viagra and menopause. It really shook me up. I would say I wish I’d never seen it except that the effect this scene had on me was similar to that of getting laid off: It inspired me to embrace life, have fun, do what scares me, and to pray I never have to take someone’s blood pressure before I let him snip off my turtleneck.

More Adventures in Babysitting: I’m still watching the adorable toddler I call Baby B on Fridays. I’ve said it before but I didn’t really expect to be babysitting for extra income at this point in life but you gotta go where the road takes you so… This past Friday turned into an all-out art extravaganza with Baby B. In between episodes of Elmo and Yo Gabba Gabba (Elmo seriously is baby crack, it’s scary), we drew with markers. Baby B doesn’t ask me to do something, he commands like a tiny fuhrer, so when he commanded me to draw a black Elmo with red eyes, I obeyed my master. We took turns drawing and when I finished my rendition of Black Elmo, Red Eyes, he would add his scribbles and marks to the page. After a while we had a pretty cool canvas going (we were actually drawing on the back page of a screenplay – ah, Hollywood). As I watched Baby B draw all sorts of randomness I suddenly got a very deep appreciation for what Basquiat was doing. I’ve always loved Basquiat but seeing an almost-two-year-old kid draw brings it all into sharp focus. So I may be under the steely command of a toddler at this time in life, but I’m pretty certain he’s smarter and gutsier and more creative than the 40-something CEO of the company that laid me off so I’ll take it. I may have had writers block for the last few weeks, but when I was in my cushy “real” job I suffered writers block for two-plus years. You can do the math! The downside of babysitting vs the corporate world is, obviously, changing diapers. I’m not a big person so wrestling a toddler who’s spinning around like the Tasmanian devil out of his overalls so I can change his crappy diaper while silently praying that his spinning doesn’t cause the crap to fly from the diaper onto my face takes a lot of strength and fortitude on my part. But I’d rather be literally dealing with a toddler’s crap than figuratively dealing with an uninspired adult’s crap so… here’s to unemployment!

And here ends our Useless Ramblings. I hope you’ve enjoyed yourselves if you’re still reading. I know I have. Until next time…

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  1. […] The continuing saga of one girl’s plight with unemployment…(read vol I,  vol II, vol III, vol IV, vol V,  vol VI, vol VII, vol. VIII vol IX, vol X , vol XI and vol XII) […]

  2. […] I,  vol II, vol III, vol IV, vol V,  vol VI, vol VII, vol. VIIIvol IX, vol X,  vol XI, vol XII,  vol XIII and vol […]

  3. […] I,  vol II, vol III, vol IV, vol V,  vol VI, vol VII, vol. VIIIvol IX, vol X,  vol XI, vol XII,  vol XIII, vol XIV and vol […]

  4. […] II, vol III, vol IV, vol V,  vol VI, vol VII, vol. VIII, vol IX, vol X,  vol XI, vol XII,  vol XIII, vol XIV, vol XV , vol XVI and vol […]

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