This evening I took the redline into DTLA at the invite of a friend. From the moment I walked in she was on her cell phone. Whatever. I don’t care. I’m tired at staring at my four walls so I guess I’ll just go stare at her walls instead. Law & Order was on TNT. Law & Order is always on TNT. I don’t think TNT shows anything other than Law & Order. I got really sleepy. I’d been up since 1:30am because I worked a 3am shift this morning. I worked an early game broadcast on a popular sports channel. I wanted to see how the afternoon game broadcasts were doing because I had set them all up. I couldn’t figure out her remote control. I tried everything I knew how to do. The most I managed was to somehow turn on her Netflix panel through her Blu-Ray player. I also changed the channel to some static and then I had to sit there as her cable box set up all of her 2000 cable channels again and scroll through them. When that was done I hit default or reset and TNT came back on again. Law & Order is permanently being broadcast on a loop on TNT.
I took a nap. I woke up two hours later. Law & Order was on TNT. I felt really guilty because I came to see my friend but I fell asleep. This happens to me all the time at other people’s houses and I always feel really guilty and stupid. But I can only go over to visit my friends on my free time and I am always fatigued during my free time. When I am at home and I have some time to squander I usually go to sleep. This makes me feel old.
Either my friend didn’t notice or she didn’t care that I fell asleep on her loveseat. She was still on the phone. I made hand motions that I was about to leave. She said wait a minute to whomever was on the phone and then said to me “do you want some cobbler?” The original incitement for me to come over was that she had some peach cobbler and vanilla ice cream. I got really excited and nodded my head yes. She said, “it’s in the fridge, help yourself to some.”
I got the cobbler and ice cream out of her fridge. The cobbler was cold. I wanted to microwave it. I got a bowl and put the cobbler in the microwave. I only needed to microwave the cobbler for :30 seconds. I pressed a button and the microwave began cooking for 3 minutes. Nope. I press stop. I pressed another button and now the microwave is cooking at ½ power level for 5 minutes. I press stop. Her microwave is all presets. I can’t figure out how to just do :30 seconds. So I press the popcorn icon and count off :30 seconds from a 2:30 cooking cycle.
The cobbler and ice cream were good and I sat at her kitchen nook table and smiled at my friend and she looked at me and smiled back while she kept talking to somebody on the phone.
On the ride back to North Hollywood on the redline, I sat with my back to these old two aging punk rockers discussing punk rock history in LA. Believe it or not, this is a very common conversation I run across almost everywhere I go in this city. If I am in line at the 7-11 ultimately I will have to suffer overhearing a conversation about who is more punk rock than whom. “Hey man, you weren’t here when TSOL played at the Hong Kong.” “Dude, Agent Orange used to be Punk what are you talking about?” “I saw Mike Ness blowing some dude at the A-Go-G0 on a Thursday night, man.” I will overhear these conversations everywhere. If I am at Gelson’s or at True Value in Los Angeles and I see two people over 50 with spiky hair and leather jackets discussing something, odds are they are arguing who is more punk rock than the other.
Sure enough, these two old farts were comparing punk rock dick sizes. They argued over everything from how “El Jefe” got his nickname in NOFX to whether China White played a set on stage with The Vandals or not. I couldn’t stand it. I wanted to turn around and rage: “There are no punk rockers anymore!” “Nobody in this whole wide world is a punk rocker. No more punk rockers exist assholes!” “My dick is more punk rock than you, suck my dick.” “If you live at the Brewery, I’ve got news for you, my shit flushed down to the sewer this morning is more punk rock than you.” “Henry Rollins has been reduced to writing self-indulgent opinions for the LA Weekly and Flea lives up in some mansion above Camarillo, get the fuck over yourselves already!”
I wanted to turn around and say something but I didn’t because of bullshit. Bullshit, bullshit, bullshit, bullshit. A literary press in Los Angeles is called Punk Hostage Press. Smile. One of their books has the following critical blurb: “…They [the poems] are in the spirit of resistance to dudebro culture and beefpizzle literature. This book is a heartless and utter rejection of the white cis male death grip on all our lives….” What? Yeah. Cis-gendered male death grip. Think about that. Or don’t think about that. You either think about that too hard and your brain will break or you will not think about that hard enough and your brain will make the transition over to NCIS or some bullshit.
While my mind was wandering, the two ancient punk-rockers-who-will-never-die had transitioned to how much they hated grunge in the 90’s. They were arguing L7. One of them says, “I thought L7 meant you were lame.” He makes a rectangle with his fingers but has to turn his hands to show a square. “See ‘L’ with one hand and a ‘7’ with the other- ‘square’.” The other punker’s reaction was deadpan, “I thought L7 was a play on the word ‘lesbian’. L-seven. L-sesbian….” What? Yeah. I had actually heard that. Instead of standing up and kicking everything in sight, I simply got up and sat somewhere else, out of ear shot. I used to have the hots for Donita Sparks. She would pull out and throw her bloody tampons out into the crowd from stage. Ok. I think that just happened once. But still. I can only achieve Zen thinking about how Donita would have reacted had she just overheard the conversation I just overhead on the redline.
Ommmmmmmmmm. Zen and the Art of Used Bloody Tampon Delivery Systems.