Finally Finished

A few things I finished recently:

–Jackie Collins’ “Deadly Embrace”. I forgot when I started it, and while it’s not on the same level as “Lucky” or “Hollywood Wives”, it was still a compelling read and another proper addition to the story of Madison Castelli that goes all the way back to the LA Connection series (which I highly recommend!). I could’ve done without the storylines of Michael’s other children, as I felt like they didn’t add anything to the main storylines that were Madison’s kidnapping and the history between Michael and Maddy’s real mother Dani. Also, in my years of reading JC’s books, one thing I really could’ve done without was her female protagonists referring their fathers as “daddy”. It’s one thing if they’re kids, but as grown-ass women?! Oh, Jackie, you’re still my literary queen, but that was a choice.

–Bookshelf shopping. Another thing that kept me from posting a bunch of nonsense here in the past month was me doing some remodeling in my studio. Long story short, I freed up some floor space to bring in some bookshelves! I had a bunch of books and vintage magazines in storage for years, and now they return to their rightful display on a bookshelf! And big-ups to SF’s Craigslist for all the great deals! I spent a total of $95 for four assembled IKEA bookshelves (and three of those models are backordered at IKEA stores). One of them normally goes for $149, but I bought it for $30! Say it with me: steal!

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Two of my bookshelves. I’m still arranging some stuff here, and don’t be surprised that I own a book on butts.

–And, finally finally, my story!!! I had to whittle its word count, but I also made more edits to it. (I can be an edit whore.) It’s still a big-ass amount of words for a debut novel, but I am going the eBook route to publish it. So anyone who likes looooong fictional reads that’s also LGBT-friendly, racy, and suspenseful, I’ll keep you posted!

His Name Is Prince And He Was Funky

In honor of what would’ve been Prince’s birthday today, here is my one and only Prince moment, from ten years ago!

It was May 2011. Then, I was working at Macy’s while in my last month of massage school. When I learned that His Purple Badness was having a show in San Jose, I just had to go! But when I also learned his show was on a Saturday, I actually worried a bit. I was scheduled to do Clinic hours that Saturday. (Clinic is pretty much work shifts for us massage therapists-in-training at school. A little Pro Tip: if you need a massage for cheap, visit a massage school that offers bodywork to the public. Remember to tip your student therapist after!) Luckily, there was a student who agree to swap clinic shifts with me, but to this day, I don’t why she wanted to. I mean, why you working when Prince is performing nearby?! Take the day off and get your butt to the show, too!

By the way, I was also surprised that tickets were cheap (at least for the section I selected), even with bitch-ass Ticketmaster fees added on. I’ve spent more in groceries than I did for Prince tix!

The arena formerly known as HP Pavilion was where the show was at. Place was PACKED. Even nicer was that there was a diverse group of people there–youngs, olds, and all the nationalities represented. Only a real legend would attract such a crowd to their show.

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This couple was princely pimped out for the party.

Now, the following pics aren’t the sharpest in quality. I forgot what camera I used, but I know the zoom and megapixels on it was dreadfully meager. (It wasn’t my Sony Cybershot that I would use in later events, as that model didn’t exist in 2011.) Crap camera aside, I still wanted to enjoy mahself. I wasn’t there to shoot captures for a newspaper; I was there to rave un2 the joy fantastic and get wild!

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Settin’ the stage, and what a stage! (Yep, that’s Prince on the big screens.)

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Look at dat crowd. None of us were thinking about some crippling pandemic then. Also, I still don’t know who those two stylish ladies were on his piano. Wendy and Lisa? Diamond and Pearl? Two SJ Sharks players in drag? It could the be the last one; it’s their arena, after all.

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You can’t tell from the potato quality pic here, but thee Sheila E was also in the house that night! She rocked those drums when they played “The Glamorous Life”.

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The best closeup I could get of him.

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At first I was thrilled to have seen him live then. After his unexpected passing five years after this concert, I don’t know if I could say I was also lucky. Maybe, but when one of my favorite artists are in town for a show, I do whatever I can to see them live. Not just to support them, but it’s also one of those “when’s the next time you’ll get that chance” deals. I thought I’d get to see another Prince show, but, sadly, it never happened. All the more reason why you gotta see your music faves when you can.

Highs, Lows, Donuts, and Bunnies

Yours trampy had an eventful Saturday. I had my second bout of vehicle fuckery in a month. This time, it involved  my car battery. Yes, it had to go out while I was working; luckily, I finished up one batch of my deliveries before my car decided to add more crap to my continuously-growing pile of personal misery. After a jumpstart from the tow person and driving 30 minutes with the resurrected battery, I took it to my car-fixing friend. He suggested that I get a new battery, and that he would also install it. I was given some time off from work to fix the car, with the option of calling out the whole day in case my car became inoperable. In one hour, I drove from friend’s house to Costco to buy that car battery, drive back to friend’s house for installation (which took just 30 minutes), get disgusted upon finding that a now-dead rat crawled into the battery space and left rat shit in there (no wonder my battery was performing like shit), then returned to Costco to dispose of the old, rat shit-stained battery and get $15 from recycling it (oh, those workers don’t know what that old battery has seen), and *catches breath* made a quick run to the food court to get me a chicken bake before returning to work.

I work this Easter. I get double pay today and my work day will be short, but I hope it’s back to boring times with the car. No mo’ drama with my chariot, man.

One of my treats for today (that I was able to nab when I saw them) will be Easter-themed mini donuts from Krispy Kreme. One of the donuts I got is this:

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I’m gonna scarf down rabbit ass today! Then, after pissing off the waistband of my jeans again from a baked ham and cheesy potato casserole Easter dinner, I’ll cuddle up to my “Bunny” Snoopy plushie…

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I know what you’re thinking. It’s how genius I am to pay just a dollar for a bunny ears headband I got at Dollar Tree and putting it on my winter-themed Snoopy, which is better than me spending $18 for a Easter-themed Snoopy at TJ Maxx that I’ll only bring out once a year. At least keeping winter Snoopy for a little longer gives it more than one purpose!

Happy Easter and Happy “Friday” to me!

And On Tuesday I Say…

…as of 2:15PM my time, I’M FULLY VACCINATED!!

Those two weeks of waiting for the Covid vaccine to fully kick in got me kind of anxious, though. Like, worrying if the wind would blow a new strain of The Rona onto me on the off-chance I had my mask off while taking a walk outside, thus ruining me and the vaccine’s efficiency. (For the record, I take the mask off when there’s no one nearby.) But now that I’m fully protected (or so the CDC says), I am so gonna live it up like a validation-starved influencer and get my free donut at Krispy Kreme! (What, did you expect me to go party in crowds again?) Fuck yeah, living! 

The Travel Slut Diaries: Snow!!!

Happy 1st Day of Spring. Let’s talk snow!

A couple days ago, my phone pushed some notification showing me where I was two years ago. My stalker phone is such a creep! It showed that I visited the Sierras then. What was I doing there? I wanted to see snow, of course!

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At the time, I lived a little “closer” to the Sierras. Like, 116 miles closer to snow land, and in an area where snow never falls in the winter. (The Bay Area and most of CA have a different set of seasons than other regions.) Once in a while, I’d be itching to go have some real winter fun and enjoy some snow. Rainy winters are a bore–happens every winter here–and it’s no fun making mud angels (not even when you’re stoned–I tried).

I drove up to the Sierras on a day where it wouldn’t be too cold (haha on me–it was still colder than I thought) and I wouldn’t need tire chains. As I trekked up Highway 80, I’d see the elevation rise and the outdoor temperature drop. For a while I didn’t see any snow. Only until I reached Blue Canyon did I hit pay dirt snow!

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Prior to this trip, the last time I got to see snow was in that wretched year known as 2016. I savored playing in that snow like I was a kid all over again. I avoided licking posts, of course.

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A little snow cave! Those chairs were chillin’–literally! Spotted at the Sierra Woods Lodge. 

The sights were also enchanting!

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Side note: I risked my shit by taking this pic with my clunky camera while driving. There is a stretch of Hwy 80 where you see this gorgeous mountain range in full view, and I did not want to pass up capturing this image! 

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I live a lot further from the Sierras now, which is one reason why I haven’t driven up there since. I can see some snow on the tips of Mt. Diablo from home when it gets really cold here. I’m still a warm weather chick and there’s no way I’d want to live in or even near a snowy region full-time. Snow’s a welcome change of scenery, nonetheless.

And some of you may be thinking that a day in the snow is nothing special, because you live it every day when it’s effing cold. I got news for you: I don’t get this privilege! Not even every year! And I have to drive far and risk icy roads for it!

Rona Reflections

Has it really been a year (and two days) since that ruthless bitch Covid was declared a worldwide pandemic and changed all of our lives for good? Unhappy anniversary! Booooo!

It was early evening of March 11, 2020 when I heard the news that some shit was going to be shut down. I was getting ready to shop at “Nordstrom”–my pet name for Dollar Tree. (I know the nickname makes no sense, but I’m still using it anyway.) Earlier that day, I heard on the sports radio station I was listening to that an NBA player may have caught Covid. That rumor ended up being true. But! Rather than isolating the player from his team and allowing the game to continue, BREAKING NEWS occurred. The whole NBA league was going to be shut down. Soon after that, the NHL issued the same statement. Two of my favorite sports leagues being shut down! What’s a basketball and hockey ho to do? Buy more stuff at “Nordstrom” than intended. Shopping, even for cheap shit, makes me happy.

I was still working my regular job then, and I had some massage bookings the rest of the week. Some sports leagues temporarily ceased their seasons, but up until March 17th (IIRC), nothing else was shut down. No face mask mandates, no social distancing protocols, no limits on crowds–none of that. Us normal folk still lived life as usual. Even when our county chose to shut things down a week later, I know I was going around without a mask. (Face masks weren’t mandatory until April, I believe.) I was breathing shared air with strangers, which, just weeks later, would be considered living life dangerously. (For the record, I never had any Covid symptoms during the time before free Covid testing was provided. Maybe I was asymptomatic, maybe I was lucky.)

The last two weeks of March 2020 were weird. Weird because I was not use to staying home the whole time and not working. My spa had shut down and I was out of work. I don’t recall the last time I was unemployed, let alone being unemployed that was not due to being laid off. Even worse, I was (and still am) considered an Independent Contractor, and, at the time, I couldn’t claim unemployment benefits. And it all had to happen when I just moved into my apartment and my rent bill was coming up. And other bills, too. Out of despair and dumbassery, I once thought, should I really consider retracting every single awful thing I said about the Kartrashians and Crappi B so that maybe things can turn around for me?

Luckily, I did not do that; that lot of talent-exempt, pea-brained twunts would become even bigger assholes later that year (more on this later). I chose to hit up Indeed.com, and after throwing my resume at almost any job I could do (LOL at my no-HVAC-knowledge ass thinking I could do HVAC work), a grocery delivery company (not Grubhub, Doordash, or Uber Eats) called me back. I accepted the job on the spot. Little did I know that the demand for grocery delivery would be huge. The money I made the first two weeks of working delivery (and I was working only four days a week) was more than enough to cover rent and my car payment. I made bank in my first month on the job.

I may have gotten my financial situation back on track, but what really opened my eyes was seeing the ugly and idiocy come out from others. It wasn’t surprising when it came from asshats I already hate. But when it came from people whom I once respected, it really made me question my faith in humanity. Ingrates believing the virus was a hoax, thinking masks don’t work, fighting to reopen businesses and schools, operating non-essential businesses that should’ve been closed down…where is that human meat grinder when you need it?

Speaking of which, then there were the celebrities. Again, forget about the asshat D-listers that ended up breaking Covid protocols. But witnessing the so-called Internet’s Boyfriend going around maskless, meeting fans, and partying (!), watching a pop idol of yours travel abroad for her birthday, and having Wonder Woman badly serenade us in an attempt to boost morale just boggled my already-boggled mind even more. As someone who used to check out celeb gossip/news sites daily, the pandemic also brought out the worst in some stars–even the “nice” ones.

But back to the most important subject here: me. Was the Covid era the worst ever time I lived through? Ehhh…I can’t say. I believe I have many more years ahead of me and who knows what those years will contain for me. All I can say is that while there were times when things really sucked diseased warthog rectum, there were some positives. I was able to stay financially afloat (although I should also be grateful for deferred payment on some of my bills). I was never bored out of my head from staying home because I drive a lot for work now, and thus I cherish my home time even more. (Having a Wii, books, and a drive to write also helps.) I cooked some fun eats I never made before. I marched for racial justice and saw that my vote mattered. I got to finish up the final draft of my story that you all will be reading (hopefully) soon. Everyone that mattered in my life had not caught Covid. And all my Covid tests that I took up until getting my vaccines were negative.

Now that I got both my vaccines and the side effects from that 2nd shot have faded, and after hearing more and more people getting vaccinated, I’m looking forward to the upcoming months. There seems to be some promise ahead. But even when things get better and back to normal, I shall not forget!

Also, I am soooo looking forward to that day when us baseball fans will finally get a chance to boo the Houston Asterisks in person!

Pics courtesy of a Google image search on Covid cakes

Rainbows and Dollahs

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I got my second Covid shot yesterday, and while I don’t feel sick, I’m stricken with a sore arm, lethargy, and a slight case of brain fog (yes, I have a brain). How I have the energy to write all this up is kind of a miracle, in a way. It feels like I’m on the rag, but without the blood and erratic mood swings. The dreary, cold & wet weather we had earlier today didn’t help causes, but when things started to clear up, I did get this purdy rainbow sighting from my apartment!

Also in today’s news, I received a $150 gift card from this market research study I did last week. I’m rich again, biatches!

Spring Nail Job

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In less than an hour, I’ll be getting my second Covid vaccine. I hear that the second shot may knock me the fuck out, but even if I end up feeling like death for a day, at least I’ll have pretty, pretty nails. The polishes I used this time around are Essie’s “Beat Of The Moment” and Zoya’s “Stassi” (I wanted some green because St. Patty’s Day is coming up). BotM actually looks more rose gold than pink on me, and its finished texture isn’t the smoothest, but it’s no biggie because I adore the sparkle from it!

My Cousin Rules

Thirty years ago this month, my six-year-old self almost met the Grim Reaper by accidentally falling into the deep end of a pool while on a family vacation in the Philippines. I didn’t know how to swim then. And thanks to that near-death moment, which rendered me a total wuss-ass around deep ends of pools and other bodies of water, I still don’t know how to swim. (I’ll take swim classes one day, I swear.) But you can thank my cousin Sunny for saving me. I guess she saved me right away because I do remember not having to be hospitalized or experiencing anything serious after. Sunny still lives in the Philippines, and if she ever reads this post, I just want to say once again…

 

 

I <3 JGL

It’s Hump Day, thus my choice of image.

During my middle school years back in the mid-90s, some of my peers would deface the bathroom stall walls by writing “I Love JTT”–as in Jonathan Taylor-Thomas. I saw the appeal but he wasn’t my jam. If I wasn’t an introverted nerd who feared getting into trouble then (I’ve come a looooong way since those days, by the way), I would’ve countered all that JTT love with an “I ❤ JGL” (as in Joseph Gordon-Levitt) scribbled in sharpie. The then-long-haired cutie caught my eye while I was reading some random teen magazine (forgot which one), and a crush was born when I started watching him on 3rd Rock From The Sun. Tommy Solomon doesn’t make me go sploosh like he used to, but I enjoyed watching him blossom into a successful adult actor over the years. Who also managed to, AFAIK, keep a balanced head on his shoulders, which is quite a feat considering his early start in a predatory industry like HoWood. I still can’t forgive him for that time he cut off his long locks in that one 3rd Rock episode years ago, though. Thirteen-year-old me was shattered when I saw that! (I ended up forgiving him in the very next episode, however, because sucker (me) and still cute (him).)

Still, happiest of birthdays to Joe today. (Forty friggin’ years old…I’ve followed the guy since he was 15, and I just sprouted another gray hair from realizing that.) He seems to be one of the few true good guys in his industry, and I hope I did not just jinx his good guy shit with that!