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rue-madame's Diaryland Diary

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Credit card girl

Boy does time ever fly. You'd think I'd be able to move in, set up utilities, get phone service and DSL in a reasonable amount of time, but no. Everything takes forever when you're working from scratch. And things in the States, contrary to what you might think, do not necessarily go faster than things in the Old Country.

Hold on to your hats. This is my longest entry ever.

I am back among the living, and living comfortably I should say. While it is true that I have incredibly reduced spending power and that I can't just walk out my door and into the fabulous world of Parisian beauty and architectural marvels, I have a really adorable apartment in a funny Russian Jewish neighborhood of Los Angeles. Today I decided that rather than moan about the lack of decent baguettes, I should go out and buy some of the local bread: rye. I got a loaf of corn rye and it is pretty damn good. Of course, I can't exactly use it with chèvre, so until I find a decent purveyor of baguettes, it's strictly cheese with *crackers.* And the little old lady at the bakery was a crack-up so you know I’ll be going back.

Shopping here (in the United States) has for the most part been a depressing adventure. Food is outrageously expensive compared to prices in France, and very little of it tastes the way it should. I bitch about this incessantly to anyone within earshot. Good food is not an American value because truly good food is equated with sin and the US is just as puritanical as always. I actually have an American friend who once told me that she was "food indifferent" and that is why she only ate pasta with salt. Quoi??? This is outrageous! But I've really decided to try and make the best of my situation, and I did unearth a few marchés. There is an organic produce market in West Hollywood on Mondays, and the tomatoes are very good albeit exorbitant. I think it's important to support the farmers who care about the food they produce.

Ok, so my apartment is cutecutecute. The hardwood floors are refinished and shiny. Every apartment I've ever lived in had scuffed, worn out, sad and dull floors (except for my place on rue Madame which was 17th century ancient, ergo stone slabs.) There are many things I need to make it perfect but as stated above, I have very little money and furnishing plans have been back-burnered. It's the top floor of the front of the building so there are windows everywhere, and the light is lovely. I have a separate entrance which I suppose means that technically it's not an apartment but a flat. I have a teeny tiny little balcony that is perfect as a smoking lounge for my nicotine-addicted friends. And my house number is 407 and a half. I don't know why I think this is funny, but I do. My neighbor downstairs loaned me the IKEA catalog after she saw how empty my place is and I've looked at it over ten times. Though I am seduced by the lovely photography and art direction, I know that the stuff is crap. And that was all confirmed after a visit to the store in Burbank. I'm either going to wait to buy furniture that I *really* want or walk up to Denmark 50 and deficit-spend.

Speaking of deficit-spending and doing my part for the war in Afghanistan, I finally got a new bed and THAT was one of the worst experiences of my life. On the plus side, I now know what it is like to buy a car at a dealership and negotiate with snake-oil salesmen. Thank god Terence was there; he is such a hard-ass negotiator. Example: "What do you mean 'delivery charge?' The apartment is a block away!" I upgraded in more ways than one: the bed is not only larger (Queen instead of Full) but it is also higher than any other bed I've ever slept in (besides the top bunk when I was a kid.) It feels so Once Upon A Timey when I climb up there that I am considering embroidering a giant pea on my comforter cover. And growing my hair really long so that it flows off the bed onto the floor and out the window.

My nutty Mad Scientist/Artist/Designer friend Ned came down a few weekends ago from San Francisco. He's thinking about moving to Los Angeles and has a lead on a sublet: a Schindler in Silver Lake. It's a cool little 1 bedroom apartment above the garages at the front of the property. If you know something about midcentury architecture, let me just say that it's classic Schindler—all flat planes of white, with huge windows and a groovy sunken living room. I'm sure the main house is incredible and worth a small fortune. Anyway, Ned and Terence and I were talking about LA and how it's the city that people go to to reinvent themselves, and we were wondering which persona we would adopt for ourselves. Ned's friend A moved here less than a year ago and became "The Rock Star" and that's been really successful for him—he's now got an agent, a dj gig as well as a band, and gets weekly checks from his appearances on commercials (you may have seen one of his ads on tv—it's for Sony, and in it, A is the punk rock blind date, and he's being filmed via video camera by his nervous date.) Anyway I am still thinking about who I should become. Ned's made his decision: he just wants to be someone who regularly proclaims, "I have so much money, it's disgusting." And Terence is now "Anal Rich Guy." I think it's amusing that both of those guys want wealthy personas. It must be because they have never had any money. I was loaded for a while; I sure enjoyed the things I could buy (when I had time to shop that is... I was a fucking idea hamster, cranking out work, slaving for The Man) but it was a sad, cold day when I got my tax bill.

And speaking of working for The Man, I should stop here and start designing my promo.

8:47 a.m. - 2001-11-21

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