I haven’t written to you in ages, I know. It’s awful of me, but don’t take it personally – I have a really good excuse, and it has the added bonus of being true.
Saturday began normally enough. I woke up about and hour before my alarm went off, percolated some java, weaned my cat off my calf muscles and onto a bowl of kibble, shaved, brushed, exercised and watched the abortion episodes of “Maude”. Nothing remarkable.
Looking natural never looked so unnatural: Bea Arthur greeting you as Maude.
I left home to walk to Amoeba Music Hollywood fifteen minutes earlier than necessary; again, totally normal – I am chronically early to everything.
I was greeted at the door by a big hug from Karen and carefully made my way back to the jazz / classical / soundtracks / New
I selected an opera to listen to. I do this every Saturday morning because I arrive 1½ hours before opening, so it’s my one chance to indulge in the genre without customers or co-workers complaining that it’s “making their ears menstruate”.
The opera of choice was Massenet's ''Don Quichotte'' – you know, the 1978 recording with Regine Crespin as Dulcinee? So lyrical! So lovely and haunting, right? But I’m sure you’re sick to death of hearing yet another blogger gush about it, so let’s move on.
Rock out with yer cock out - the diva Regine Crespin
Opening time came and the usual swarm of regulars began streaming in. It really is amazing how many people spend the same hours a week at Amoeba as I do without getting paid to do so.
Like every work day, I set myself a mental checklist of things I wanted to get accomplished, then proceeded to spend all my time merely keeping my section from being torn apart. I swear, sometimes I look out over the soundtrack section from the relative safety of the information desk, and it seems to me that soundtracks are nothing but troughs of lamb meat, and customers are food-deprived coyotes. (The smell of certain customers often compounds this fantasy, but you’ll never catch me writing that in my blog, because it would sound incredibly rude, and I’d never want our clientele to think I didn’t adore them, because I do. I adore coyotes, too. Peace, brah.)
At some point in the day I got a phone call from my boyfriend, who we’ll call Corey, because that’s his name. He was hanging out in the Emergency Room at Cedars-Sinai – just chillin’, shootin’ the sh*t – waiting for a CAT Scan to see why his insides felt like Mount Saint Helens circa May 17, 1980.
That was the part where my day stopped being average.
The ultimate blow job - Mount Saint Helens, circa 1980
I’m great in a crisis. I’m clear-headed, in control, attentive, and quick with helpful ideas. What I’m not great at is being somewhere far away from the crisis. A customer asks me, “What’s the difference between this copy of ‘The Jungle Book’ soundtrack and this one?” and I want to answer, “I don’t care, my baby’s in the hospital!” instead of the more appropriate “Well, this copy is factory-sealed but sold at a used price and this other copy is actually a books-on-tape version of Dianetics.”
(For the record, another distinguishing difference between these two stories is that “The Jungle Book”, which features a cast of talking animals living in a harmoniously occupied
L. Ron Hubbard and Kaa the Python: "Trust in me..."
Six o’clock finally came and I rushed from work to the hospital, where I found Corey on a bed, entangled in a small room so full of wires and tubes and machinery that it looked like a bedroom spread for the BORG issue of Better Homes & Gardens. (That’s a Star Trek joke for my dear friend, Sadie.)
It was the beginning of a long night...