By Gustavo Arellano
By R. Scott Moxley
By Alfonso Delgado
By Courtney Hamilton
By Joel Beers
By Peter Maguire
By Charles Lam
By Charles Lam
I'd been a small bit depressed all week, getting home by three p.m. to have a little lie-down on my bed each and every afternoon. I mean, it wasn't major: it wasn't that crushing '04 election depression, the one where concerned strangers would write me not to do it!And no,seriously,was I okay,because I was making children weep with my scary dead eyes, and household pets could smell the fear.
No, in this case, the world around me, like the Beatles song, was getting better all the time. Speaker Pelosi and her cohorts in crime finished up their 100 Hours promises in a whiplash 42, and had decided to move onto global warming now that they had an afternoon free. Those were very good things—especially watching Nancy Pelosi rock the Armani—and once I could take my eyes off the country for a moment without worrying that G. Gordon Liddy would get nominated Attorney Generalor that the bombing of Cambodia would begin in five minutes, I had some time to focus on me.
This is rarely a good idea.
It meant hours every day on my back in my aerie to decide if I was just kind of lonely and nobody loved me and never would, or if my PMS had barged in early and come to stay.
My navel has never got so much thought.
Once I granted myself two Pulitzers, I felt ever so much better. (I have a very rich inner life: just ask my boyfriend, Daniel Craig!) And then Dave called and invited me to OCMA, and I felt better still. But then my dad rang up and told me I was puffy and needed to quit drinking, and also that I'd never get a beau if I kept vulgarly writing about my slutty ways (I've always been promiscuous, but I've never been a whore), and I felt less better. And then we got to OCMA, and any shreds of better went right out the door.
How can I describe the horror that was Saturday night's "The Happening"? Let's start with the art!
First, take a bunch of action sports "designers" and whisper in their well-shaped ears that they're true artists whose impact on the zeitgeist extends well beyond designing new fabrics for Jams. Then add in a bunch of dumb bunnies who live only to be cool, even if "cool" at the time means wearing wraparound orange Oakleys. Hand one of them a camera and watch him put on the wall a bunch of black-and-white photos of an uninteresting friend sitting in a diner that are ill-composed, ill-shot, ill-developed, and badly hung. Give another of them a block of wood on which he will paint in thick, flat acrylic a skateboard heading toward an archway, wave his hand, and call it $2200. Hand a third some surfboards and he will adorn with them some pretty cool multi-armed, Kali-like goddesses that we think we saw at the Quiksilver party. Offer the rest of them a bunch of crayons so they can do some naïf stick figures and tell the girls they're artists. They're sensitive. They won't just bang ya and then head straight to the Wii. (Note to the girls: they will just bang ya and then head straight to the Wii.)
Next, add music. We'd gone to see Matt Costa, but he wasn't going on until 10:30, and by the time we'd been there 45 minutes, it was still only 7:15. Instead, we listened to a guy on guitar strum some dirge-filled chords that would have sounded fantastic by a campfire at two in the morning if you were already stoned, but it wasn't and we weren't. Here? We headed toward the back, where it was less dirgey but surrounded by the art. It was like the brilliant game my little brother came up with, "Kevin Federline, or . . . ?" and having to choose between Kevin Federline and Donald Segretti.
Sprinkle into the mix a thousand surf hotties way hotter than you, add some shame, and then turn the lights on full-blast so everyone can see your middle-aged skin. (Make sure your father called you "puffy" that day.) By 7:18, we were out. Peace.
Hillary had entered the race that weekend—I know because she e-mailed me—and Dave and I had nothing but spite. But Dave was being passive-aggressive about Al Gore too, and Dave was in need of a beat-down. "He had his place in history, and what did he do?" Dave asked. "He let Bush win and didn't say a word."
Please. Let's say Gore had fought the Supreme Court, and let's say Gore had won. He was already getting a ration of shit just by asking that the votes be counted. 9/11 would never have happened—wonky Gore would hardly have told the CIA briefer, "Okay, you've covered your ass now," as W. did in August '01—but because it would have never happened, nobody would have known what we escaped, and his tenure would have been nasty, brutish and short.
After the election, he went off and found himself—got fat and happy, grew that beard, and took on global warming—and I like what he found, especially the global warming.
Now I'd just like to see him in an Armani suit.
On our way out, we stopped by the Camp's little fire pit. There, Joe Allen from the museum had organized a little hoedown, and instead of 1000 people crushing around, there were one, two, three, seven, nine. Nine is such a nicer number. And instead of dirgey surf boys, there were two women from New Jersey. And instead of sounding like a poor man's Jack Johnson, Sharon Vanetten and Corbi Wright sounded like a rich man's Shawn Colvin, with the phrasing of Marianne Faithful and Joni Mitchell's pure,sweet trills. They were beautiful, and it was sweet and peaceful, the tiny crowd silent and rapt and snickering only when a gaggle of girls in high-heeled shoes noisily clacked their way past us to Aire.
Clack clack clack. Click clack.
Vanetten and Wright left for San Francisco to spread their loveliness by the Bay, while I was home and in bed by nine p.m. to watch SNL take on Hillary Clinton but fierce, and to win two more Pulitzers and a beau.
Chris Isaak sends his love.