It might not have been the most mature move, but calling one of my many GOP friends at probably 1:30 a.m. on Election Night and chanting "Speaker Pelosi/Speaker Pelosi" all singsong-style over and over again while doing a little cha-cha (followed by some soft shoe) was some of the most fun I've had in quite some time. He responded with a smug, arrogant little "That's okay; Lieutenant Governor McClintock."
Nooooooo! What happened to the man the California Young Dems guy Tim Steed calls "Handsome John Garamendi"? Yes, in the race for Insurance Commissioner, Bustamante deserved to lose (hey, he did lose a lot of weight!), and I understand that people pooh-poohed Angelides from the beginning. But surely not a GOP blue state sweep?
I logged in on some Young Dem's laptop to ocvote.com, the website of the Orange County registrar, where a terrifying sight awaited my eyes. Lockyer lost to Strickland? Bowen lost to MacPherson? Jerry Brown lost to Chuck . . . Chuck . . . aha. The OC registrar had the local vote tallies. (Terribly helpful, except really not.) Sorry, but weren't no way Poochigian was outpolling Brown 60/40. Nice try, though.
I called my buddy back and explained it to him, and he was sad,and I laughed and laughed.
And yet, who really won? He did. Even at the Sylvia Plathathon that was GOP election night at the Irvine Hyatt, he'd found some chick to make time with and soothe his hurt feelies. Was I making time with someone? Were my feelies soothed? No.
But did I get a picture with Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez, now chairwoman of the House Homeland Security Sub-Committee on Ports and Shit? (No more pillow fights for you, DA wench Susan Schroeder! The Girl's got a new best friend!) And did she chide me to put down my drink for the snapshot—"Otherwise you'll look like a lush!"? I did, and she did, though it's funny, because all these years I had thought she'd known who I was, and there's no "look like" about it.
Madam Chairwoman. Rock the fuck on!
* * *
Madam Chairwoman's victory party at the OC Performing Arts Pavilion, though, was an odd, uppity thing. She doesn't like the old union folks (and Mexicans!) hanging out at the IBEW Local 441? She has to be all fancy, with her $40 ticket price and her salmon and her pomegranate-studded couscous? And then she has to charge $6 for a beer? The fuck you say! (The salmon and couscous, though, were delicious.)
It all reminded me of nothing so much as when I became friends with John Pantle, who was then the booker at the Mouse House of Blues, and I went from sweating and dancing and making friends with my co-losers on the floor (or "steerage," as I now like to call it) to sitting in the balcony and looking down derisively on the madding crowds below—probably looking down on them with a lorgnette.
I'll say it like Wyclef. Don't forget where you came from, Loretta: Palos Verdes!
* * *
By Friday, I was still tired—those Young Dems are deadly!—so I smoked some crack and watched Annie Hall.
But Saturday, I had the world's most exciting event to attend: everybody, Nick Schou wrote a book! And had a reading! Where he didn't actually read, but recited seamlessly for us the entire story of the late San Jose Mercury News reporter Gary Webb, and his unjustly maligned article about the CIA's ties to the '80s LA crack epidemic! And we were happy! Because Nick Schou wrote a book! All the Weekly folks (except Lowery) showed up, and when Gustavo releases his book, we'll all show up too, but probably just so we can throw shit at him. It's not that Gustavo isn't just as much a sweetling as Schou—he is, and industrious too!—it's just the whole thing about him going on Colbert. We just really won't ever forgive him for that.
That night, following the reception for Schou's book at the Long Beach Museum of Art—such a pretty place, with such a terrible collection—we hit up Dan Lo Fi Champion to see what was going on in SnoopTown, a place I've been pretty much five times since I finally moved away from all the neighbors having gun fun in my front yard. Lo Fi said to come to the Pike, so I saddled up Jimand Leslie Washburn and off we rode. The Pike was boring (though it did have Chimay), and the folkie guy playing acoustic was boring (though dimpled), and the owner—that guy from Social D—was a total dork (though from Social D). We were all outside trying to remember who sang "Walking in LA"—the guys said Berlin, we girls countered with the Go-Go's, before we all started going "Terry . . . drummer . . . Dale Bozzio. . . MISSING PERSONS!"
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Okay, so this is boring, right? But it's the necessary prelude to this, which is also boring: then the Social D guy goes, "You owe me 50 bucks!" and I go, "Huh?" and he goes, "You said it was the Go-Go's and you were wrong," and I go, "You said it was Berlin, and I was the one who finally got that it was Missing Persons and I never said I was betting you 50 bucks, and fuck off, spazz!"
Good God, I hope that wasn't flirting.
Then we went to Fern's, and that sucked too, and since I used to actually live there, I already knew that, so I really didn't have any excuse, and I went home and smoked some crack and watched The War Room, and chanted "Speaker Pelosi" to myself a few more times before drifting off into a sweet, sweet sleep.