fancy meeting

We were at Pastis, the bistro where Desperado and I used to hang out back when we were TV stars at Oxygen. He was behind the bar; I was meeting an editor.
Whoops, there he was. Gotta go. Later.
"My daughter's ex boyfriends litter New York," I told the editor. "There's one behind the bar. A filmmaker."
So we ate bar steaks and those great fries. He offered me a gig in China and okayed one in Egypt, neither of which I have time to do. And while he was in the men's room, I snatched a word with the bartender. His film about his search for his Iranian father is "almost done." POV is looking at it this week. This is cool. And then, "Say hi to your daughter. I hope. . . "
"She's getting married."
"I heard. It's what she wanted to do," he said.
"Right," I said. The editor was waiting. "Gotta go—bye."


happy new year of the dog

According to the Phillipine Daily Inquirer, Year of the fire Dog will bring a period of optimism, industry, growth and regeneration. Idealism will trump cynicism, fidelity, deceit and true leadership will take over from cockiness (last year was the Year of the Cock—no big surprise). There will be peace and harmony in the home, romance may appear unexpectedly and people who had never considered settling down will do so.
It is also a very good year for Tigers to build and invest in real estate.
But I knew that. Check out your future in DOG YEARS


lo lite

When we met her thirteen and some years ago, it was her 62nd birthday. We celebrated then in Pokara. She was back in Nepal for her last birthday, too, so we trekked down to the Lower East Side to hold a belated celebration with five of the original seven sisters.


last ditch pitch

The fight continues. I finally got—after a year—the last piece of paper I needed to submit my final application to the environmental powers that be. FedEx-ing to the Coastal Resources Management Council, state of Rhode Island within the hour.


ford's fengshui

The cruise control can sometimes spontaneously burst into flames, even when the engine is turned off. Having the recall attended to semed like a fine idea, particularly while I was on jury duty and could not move the truck for alternate side of the street parking.
The valet parkers took the truck, and I strolled onto the sales floor. They had fengshui-ed the place with an aquarium on both floors, but it clearly hasn't been working. I took the truck in on the day Ford announced plant closings and the laying off of 30,000 workers.
I walked down the river to pick it up (above). They fixed the cruise control for nothing but noted a number of other things that needed to be done totalling $1000. Upper control arm r & r ($410), wheel alignment ($183), wiper blades ($59!), coolant flush ($180) and fuel/emission flush (clean jets? $177).
Just put $3000 into the thing last summer. My feeling is that if I have this work done, I might as well buy a new truck. While there's still a Ford Motor Co.



driving me coco

Another e mail from my Asian friends. . .

Dear Auntie Claudia,

I can assure you that not only Mrs. Li exist, so does Coco Li, aka, daughter of Mr. & Mrs. Li. My mom and I, with a bit influence of Merlot, had a long heart-to-heart chat last night with regard to my father's indecipherable infatuation for blondes over internet. My mom told me that my father had never seen a Blondie before he left Chengdu, China in the early 1980s but soon after he arrived in the States, he had long been poisoned by the decadent, capitalist fleshy publication which is as easily accessable and affordable as a bowl of Chinese noodle soup in Chinatown. I do not agree with my mom that he needs therapy. Beneath his quiet facade, he's actually quite likeable, intelligent and articulate. I do not mind that he uses my computer but I don't like the cookies he has attracted to my laptop. He does monitor his stocks but both my mom and I know very well that his AOL stock really sucks.



bicoastal relationship

year of the dog indeed

I, Claudia, received the following e-mail from a person I had no reason to believe existed. No wonder Courtny Li has been attempting to deflect me to her widowed and thus UNmarried father. Ohmigawd!

Dear goddess or whoever you're and where you're,
Now I finally understand why my fu-king sits in front of our daughter's computer early in the morning and late in the night typing away, claiming he's monitoring the performance of his stock and commodity.
Buuullshit. Let me tell you, his stock performs badly, and he performs even worse in bed. Trust me, I've experienced this for nearly a quarter of a century. However, please do not let my note discourage you from writing him, for the only time of the day when he feels alive is when he's sitting in front of computer. A little bit of secret grin is often revealed that is combined with an unfamiliar satisfaction and yearning. I know this man needs help. Next year for our Chinese people is the Year of Dog. I think it's more suitable to be the Year of Shrink, one for my husband, one for me. Do you think you may need one as well? Perhaps we can all go to the same shrink and ask for discount.
Yours, Mrs. Li


bagua me, baby

One of the principles of fengshui is that beams and pillars interfere with chi, or the flow of energy. The cure for this is sometimes held to be mirrors placed on each side of a pillar and, perhaps, wooden flutes dangling from beams.
Hmm. Let's see, I'm building a post and beam house.
I need a gross of mirrors and flutes.


despite the stars

I checked all my horoscopes to find an auspicious day to sign a contract to pay $127,000 for a timber frame and OSB paneling to go over it. Apparently, there is no such day--well, I only checked yesterday and today--so I went ahead and signed it.
In the teeth of advice from my sister.
In the teeth of advice from my brother.
In the teeth of advice from my accountant.
In the teeth of advice from my financial advisor, Dangerman, who, ironically, likes safer investments.
They would all like to know how I'm going to pay for it, and they think maybe I could do it cheaper. However, it's like the old saying: Fast, Good, Cheap--choose two.
I'm going for it.


and she shopped

This is Jay doing what she does so well at a really nice store called Really Great Things which is really nearby or I really wouldn't have been in the store at all. The really best thing about the store is the mother-daughter team who run the place, Rande and Bernice. Jay liked a lot of the clothes but being as she doesn't do as much black tie these days said that the Prada flats and wool jacket by Junya Watanabe for Comme Des Garcons that she had already bought at serious discounts were more practical. Barely, in my opinion.
It had never occurred to me that Rande at Really Great Things would zero in on me when I let fall that Wolfen's wedding dress was similar to one of those shown—I haven't been fashionable in years.
"My mother and sister are making the dress," I hastened to explain.
"Her dress," said Rande. "I'm talking about your dress."
"My dress?" I asked. "I haven't worn a dress since. . ." Hmm. Probably since Jay's son (my stepson) got married.
"You have to wear a dress to honor Wolfen," said Jay.
"I don't know that Wolfen will consider it an honor," I said. "But I'll do whatever she wants, of course."
Jay and I xeroxed site plans on the way home. And we watched Love Monkey (see reviews on last blog entry), and then she packed up her treasures into rather more pieces of luggage than I own. At 6:30 ayem, Jay and Mr. Classical got into their cab, leaving behind a small furry puddle flattened to the floor who didn't want to go for his walk.
"What's wrong with Moxie?" I asked Antonia, as she headed off for another day of shooting Love Monkey.
"He's been like this since they picked up their suitcases," she said. "He's depressed."
Moxie and I went back to bed.


coulda joined a motorcycle gang

"Be at the Red Rock at 3:00." The instructions were clear. I could be an extra in the TV show premiering today in my favorite bar in the Lower West, one where I used to get inspiration for the latest entry in "Sex Lives on Videotape," the series Desperado and I once did in a building nearby.
But did I hasten to the Red Rock to belly up to the bar with the rest of the extras, a motorcycle club? I did not. I thought it was too cold outside and lay on the sofa and sniffled instead. Dope. I coulda been in Hollywood. Don't forget to watch Love Monkey, the show I could have been on, tonight.


and who's walking the dog?

"Terry Mann wants to know what key the two songs he's doing tomorrow are in." The voice is efficient with a touch of schmooze. It's tough being an assistant director. You have to figure out everything from how to transport 150 people to the studio in the event of a transit strike to calming the talent by ascertaining that a certain score is in the key of G. Anyway, tomorrow at 9:00 you can see the fruits of Antonia's organization on the premier of the new CBS series Love Monkey.
Which, when you come right down to it, is why I have a dog tugging at my pant leg right now.


ad revenues

So far this year: $15.48.
Can't get no pedigreed pup for that kind of chump change.


fengshui this

Filling out forms is not a forte. Not sure whether it's because my handwriting is so bad or because my brain so defies the need to categorize my life. Or maybe it's just that I don't want to even consider the answers to such questions as: "What is your annual income?" "How much does your homeowners' policy cost?" "When do you break ground?" "What is your current interest rate?" "How old are you?"
However, when your accountant tells you you are being an idiot, when the IRS duns you for back taxes, when you need to refinance a mortgage, when your homeowner's insurance dumps you and you have to sign contracts to spend hundreds of thgousands of dollars, you have to fill out a shitload of forms.
And, baby, I don't have Acrobat Writer to do them in PDF nor do I have a functioning typewriter. Fill in the blankety blank blanks.


position wanted

Needed: a feng shui practitioner in search of an acolyte. You would think, with my many contacts in Asia (two) it wouldn't be hard to track down an introduction. But alas, one of my two contacts has the following to say: "Frankly you're your own master of ying and yang and of feng and shui. You have all the right chi—life force. But just remember to possess is to be possessed. I don't know who said that, but I kind of agree as long as I have two Leicas."
Not particularly helpful. So I ask you. Do you know anyone who knows anyone in the world of feng shui who might need a partially Chinese speaking aging blond broad with expertise in the I Ching to help out around the office? Preferably in Taiwan or China?


annual fundraising attempt

Has anybody told you lately you're beautiful? You're beautiful! Love ya! Mean it!
*for the year


mortgage me

Just picture a half-finished house looming in the left of the frame. "The site of the building I believe could be okay, at least to get the ball rolling here," said the man at Coastal Resources. "Just get the application in and we can get started." So I'll finish the application, go up to the island to get the last piece of paper I need for the application, and walk it into the state office building. Then I'll leave the country.
Real estate. The Artist has just bought a house and is in the process of renovation. Angelina just found out that an offer she made on a house near the Artist's has been accepted. Looks like I'm on my way to moguldom. Now all we have to do is figure out how to pay for it. Credit cards?


winter conditions

Headed north in the rain/snow for Just One More celebration. Depending on the weather, may have to stop for a load of something or other in the back of the truck. Dirt? Gravel? Radiators?


happy 2006

At the time of this post, the party was continuing. . .