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10:23 am - THU 3/20/03
Going Downtown

Goin' Downtown


Weds 2:45 am

Got my bike back yesterday afternoon before work.

And with the gears working again, the tires perfectly inflated, and the back wheel "trued" (I don't know what that means exactly, but it entails, at least in part, tightening and/or replacing any loose spokes), I had the best ride home since I-don't-know-when. It was actually fun--and fast!--instead of being the arduous slog it's been for awhile now (I hadn't realized how bad a shape the bike was actually in; I'd thought it was Yours Truly that was breaking down!).

Anyway, I'm very happy to have the bike back. Getting to and from work without it wasn't that big a deal, really--I took the bus in, and was mostly able to catch rides home--but I missed my independence, and the solitude of the ride home, "ardous slog" notwithstanding (But I want to thank Clark for giving me a ride home on Friday, and Katie for giving me rides on Saturday and Sunday. And Ian for offering to give me a ride on Monday, even though I declined because it was pretty much out-of-his-way).

Yesterday should have been a great day for me--I got my bike back, it was an absolutely perfect day (Sunny, probably in the mid-60s), it was my "Friday", and Cary had left a message about the film thing (And to tell me he was ready to hand over his old computer, after transferring the files he needed and cleaning things up for me)--but it was actually kind of tough, at least till the evening, when a very mellow couple hours at the info counter and an approaching weekend seemed to "kick in", and let me know it was actually okay to be in a good mood.

9:17 pm

(Watching Angel...)

The coming war has been in my thoughts for awhile now; From the back of my mind, to the middle, and now, with tonite's "target of opportunity" attack, front and center.

I was never exactly gung-ho on war, but I would say, for a time, that I was ambivalent. Saddam Hussein is obviously a bad guy, and I think the world would probably be a better place without him (Though who's to say he won't be replaced by someone or something just as bad?).

But that said, something has stuck with me, something I read awhile back in Time magazine, something that very much reflects my own, underlying feeling about the situation (This is from an Anna Quindlen op-ed piece. Quindlen is quoting her father).

"We don't attack first," he says. "That's a given. A professor of mine once said, 'Democracy fights its battles with one hand tied behind its back.' The nature of a true democracy is that it is never the aggressor."

In this situation, we weren't attacked. We weren't even threatened. Bush obviously has no proof directly connecting Iraq to 9/11 or anything else (Or else he would have presented it by now). World opinion is pretty solidly against us--which is more than understandable (I don't think we'd condone this behavior from another country)--and far from making the world a safer place, this plays directly into the hands of terrorists, who couldn't have made a better recruitment film if they'd hired Steven Spielberg (I have to be honest--I very much want to be living someplace else right now, and not in a major terrorist target-area). I think the world may just get a whole lot more dangerous now.

I'm not a very political animal, by and large. But I know when something feels wrong, and this is feeling more and more wrong by the moment (And this is coming from someone who thinks war is sometimes necessary. I'm definitely not a "peace at any price" kind-of-guy). This is an inappropriate use of our power and position in the world, and I'm afraid that somewhere down the road, we're gonna pay for it.


And on a lighter note...

I read, and in his most recent entry, he had a link to a game online. It was cute, but no big deal. But in his guestbook, someone shared a link to this, a Flash animation I found so charming I wanted to share it with my little gang of readers (And thanks for Lauren, for teaching me the html for the link!). __________________________________________________

This afternoon, I did something I've been thinking about for awhile now; I tooled around the downtown area on my bike (I haven't been down in that area since I applied to AppleOne, the temp agency, almost two years ago).

I was sort of looking for theaters and theatres, and I didn't see any of either (Actually, that's not strictly true; On Broadway, there were a number of theaters, but none of them were actually operating as theaters). But I did traverse the "Historic Core District", the "Fashion District", and the "Jewelery District".

Here's some stuff I saw, and thought was interesting enough to write down:

1. I saw a place--Bocelli's Mens Outlet--that was advertising suits for $139 (Now something tells me that you get what you pay for with a $139 suit, but I'm still thinking about checking it out tomorrow. I would have today, but I hadn't showered and was kind of stinky).

2. At one point, I was passing a lot of stores selling assorted toys and tchotkes and what-have-you, when at one such store, I saw a set of "Spader-Man" action figures, a badly done foreign knock-off ("Does James Spader know he's a superhero in Japan?", I found myself wondering).

3. The awning of one electronics store read "Mom's and Baby's Wear". Now, I don't know about you, but I find that kind of inattention to detail discouraging, to say the least! (I also had something of a realization; I bemoan the death of "Mom and Pop" stores and think chains tend to be a bad thing, but as I went by any number of "hole-in-the-wall" electronic stores, with their "no refund or exchanges" signs, I thought "I would never buy something from one of these places".

4. On a related note, I saw a sign next to an umbrella stand that said "No return. No exchange. No try (No open)". Again, I found myself thinking "I would never buy an umbrella here". Not even if I was in the middle of a downpour.

5. I saw more African-Americans downtown than I think I've seen at any one time since I've been here. And I'm in the second most populated city in America (Michael Moore has a similar observation in Stupid White Men).

6. There's a Los Angeles street here in LA. It made me wonder if every major city has a street named after the city.


Still watching a lot of news today, though at times like this it always strikes me that there seems to be a lot more news coverage than there is actual news to cover (I turned the tv off about half an hour ago).

I enjoyed my little sojourn downtown--At least for awhile (I was particularly intrigued by a couple of storefronts that were so small I wouldn't have been able to go in with my bike and turn around). Then I got kind of bored with all the lookalike places selling womens clothes and handbags and jewelery. There was also a bit of a "chafing issue" after two-hours plus on the bike--but there wasn't anything there that would have brought me back (But I know I probably missed a lot too).

The only two things I told myself I had to do this "weekend" I didn't do yesterday (Dishes and getting my headshot to Breakdown services to be scanned), so very shortly, I have to hop in the shower and get to Breakdown services on Cotner (It's a little bit annoying--One casting director is doing online submissions differently from everyone else, so as a result, I have to take an hour out of my day to do this--but if it leads to a job...then this is what I shall do).

I was looking at the Entertainment Weekly website a little earlier. They had a thing on shows that are "on the bubble" (i.e. They could possibly be cancelled for low ratings), and wouldn't you know, two of my "stories" were on the list--Ed, and Boomtown.

I knew about Boomtown, but didn't think there was a problem with Ed till they moved it to Friday (One big reason a show gets moved to another night is if it's getting beaten in the rating on the night it's currently playing).

I recently read that Angel is also on the cusp of cancellation. And of course, Buffy is done after this year (They're talking about some kind of "spin-off", but I'm pretty dubious), so there's the potential for Jimmy's tv viewing schedule to be devastated, sooner rather than later, which discourages me on a number of fronts:

1. I like the shows I watch, or else I wouldn't be watching them. And not to sound too pathetic, but I count on these shows to give me something to look forward to on a given night.

2. And the fact that I think these shows are really good also leaves me feeling discouraged that they aren't being embraced by a wider audience. I get uncomfortable whenever I start thinking that "the public" is stupid, but I look at some of the most popular tv shows and movies, and I can't help but feel severely out-of-synch with the society I live in (And I don't think I'm particularly "highbrow" in what I like; I see all the things I watch on tv, for example, as well-done, popular entertainment).

3. And it also leaves me confused about the acting thing; Here I am, trying to get somewhere as an actor, an uphill climb in any case, and it seems like the kind of stuff I'd want to do is too smart for the idiotic "general public".

But I guess, concerning that last thing, I just have to hope there will always be at least some audience for smarter fare.

Well, more of this diatribe at a later date...


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