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11:16 pm - Sun 5/18/03
You can't have everything, even in California

"You can't have everything, even in California"

(The above quote is from Raymond Chandler. And in my experience so far, I have found it to be an accurate statement.)

You might have noticed I now have yet another little "comments" thingie in my journal (If you haven't noticed...I now have yet another little "comments" thingie in my journal).

The reason for that is that it's one of the perks of my new "Supergold" membership; My "gold" membership was about to expire, and I decided to upgrade because 1) I would then get a lot more space for pictures (And I haven't figured out any other use for my scanner at this point), and 2)I'm temporarily rolling in dough, so it seemed appropriate to share some of the wealth with Andrew (The D-land webmaster), since I make pretty heavy use of this site.

(It just occurred to me that I'm going on and on about this, and I've got about a bazillion other things to write about...)

My birthday on Thursday came and went without major incident.

I started out at Denny's around 11:00 or thereabouts, getting steak and eggs (I went for the T-bone. It was my birthday, after all).

After that, I walked down to the Vista theater, where The Matrix: Reloaded was playing.

Bought a ticket for the 1:00 show, and walked in as the previews were finishing up.

I noticed the sound seemed kind of funny, and the glitchiness became much more evident once the movie started--You could hear every extraneous noise on the soundtrack...but no voices.

It didn't take long for things to turn pretty ugly; This was opening day of a movie people have been waiting four years to see, so patience with "technical difficulties" was going to be pretty thin (For a moment, I thought "Ok, it's my 42 birthday, and I'm going to be in the middle of a riot...").

I debated what to do, but then decided that they'd either stop the film and give us refunds, or else they'd fix the problem and start the film over from the beginning, so I decided to wait it out (A number of angry patrons were already gathered in the lobby at that point).

Well, they did fix the problem, ten minutes or so into the movie, but after a couple minutes, it became clear they were not going to start things over, so at that point I thought "Screw this", and I left (The theater was offering either your money back, or a pass good for two people. Since I'm just me, I opted to get my money back, a decision that becomes important later in our story...).

I walked down to Skylight Books on Vermont, intending to get a Backstage.

The Los Feliz 3 is right next door (The theater I've referenced a number of times in here, with a very cheap matinee), and I saw they were showing A Mighty Wind, a movie I've wanted to see since it opened some weeks back.

So I put my money down, and saw A Mighty Wind. And I had a really good time (Go see it if you haven't already).

Everyone did a great job, but I was particularly impressed with Catherine O'Hara and Eugene Levy, as folk duo "Mitch and Mickey". They sounded great, they were funny, but the thing that really got me was that there was something real at the core of their two characters, something very bittersweet (There's a moment between them in the climactic reunion concert that has a genuine "dramatic tension").

After the movie, I popped into Skylight Books to get my Backstage, then thought I'd give The Matrix another shot, since I could get back down to the Vista in time for the 4:00 show (It was playing at another theater within walking distance, but I'd missed their last matinee, so I'd had to have paid full price. And figured out what to do with myself for two hours besides).

As I was in line to get my ticket, an African American gentleman came up to the line and said "Anyone here by themselves?".

I hesitated, but when no one else spoke up, I said "I am".

So he gestured for me to step out of line, showed the ticket taker his pass--He'd also been at the glitchy 1:00 showing--and I got in to see the movie for free (In an email to Jane, I referred to it as "A little birthday present from the universe").

What impressed me about this turn of events is thinking about everything that had to happen for it to transpire; I had to decide to leave the 1:00 show, I had to decide to get my money back instead of a pass, and I had to decide to go back (A decision I made, in part, because A Mighty Wind was playing at that other theater, and it let out just in time for me to get back to The Vista).

But anyway...After all this serendipity, The Matrix: Reloaded turned out to not be very good, at least not in this humble reviewer's opinion.

John C. at work had said he was not excited about a Matrix sequel, as much as he loved the first movie, because he thought the story was finished.

After the second movie, I think he might have been right.

But I'm glad I got to see it for free...

After the movie, I was walking home, and decided to do something I've thought about before, and finally allowed myself, since as I've already explained, it was my birthday--I went to a strip club. Not a nice one, just a hole-in-the-wall called Cheetahs.

I stayed long enough to have a $4 Budweiser, watch two girls "dance"--The first one was attractive enough; The second had large, gravity-defying breasts that were a complete turn-off--and watch the Lakers and Spurs in the playoffs (When you present me with the choice of watching naked women or watching a sporting event, and I find myself more interested in the sporting event, I think something has gone wrong somewhere...).

After that, I made my way home, stopping at Little Caesars on the way, where I got a ham-and-pinapple pizza for just $6.50 (I'm actually hoping that was some sort of sale, cause if there's pizza that close to home for just $6.50, I'm in some serious trouble!).

When I got home, there was a card from Kevin in the mail--with a lovely cash gift--and an email card from Tom H.

I watched Friends, ate my pizza, and that was essentially my birthday day (Right before midnite, I went out for ice cream; If you hadn't already guessed, the basic theme of the day was "getting to indulge my appetites".

As birthday's go, this wasn't too bad. I've definitely done worse.

And there's loads more to write about--It's been a very eventful couple of days--but I'm going to have to save it for tomorrow; I have an audition in the morning, and I have to try and get some sleep.

Nitey-nite, y'all...


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