A Week in the Life of a Venizen

by Sombrella

Friday afternoon: I go to the bank for a fat wad of cash, convert it to a money order at the post office, and send the rent on its way. I've done nothing at work today. I go back to the office and call with my financial recovery counselor. She sounds really old, but I've never seen her in person. Her name's Barbara. She says she enjoys working with me. I have tracked every expense of the past month with perfect precision. I hang up with Barbara and leave for my acupuncture appointment. Yuri, the acupuncturist. He's a crazy Russian that changed his last name to Yang when he got his Chinese medicine degree. Maybe I have a crush on him. Okay, not really -- I just like to flirt. Yuri does me up solid with some needles, loosening me up for Coachella (music festival). Yuri always leaves me in there for like an hour. Sometimes, I cry. Usually I just get totally high -- lying in the dark, face down, with needles all over my back. After acupuncture I go to a lecture at Santa Monica College. The topic is Color and Light in Nature. I walk right in even though the door sign says you have to pay first. Only the lecturer is there and we talk. Other attendees gather outside, waiting like the sign says, and I feel a little embarrassed. The lecturer is cool and plays fiddle for a band called the Squirrel Heads. He lives in Topanga. I like Topanga. And I like stars, which is what he studies in his day job. I take copious notes and ooh and aah at the rainbow and cloudbow and sun halo pictures. Then I go home. I crash out from acupuncture.

Saturday morning: I'm up early and head towards Coachella. I pick up my friends and we drive to the desert. We talk, we listen, we jam -- a jam in some energetic sense, not literally. We get there and it's hot as a stoven. I keep chugging water. The music is okay. The people are quiet. I drink a coconut. I meet a hottie at the Pixies-Radiohead part. I want to take him behind the fruit stand, but we aren't going nowhere with the crowd around us. After the show he gives me his promo CD. We separate. His music is actually good. A few days later I leave a message on his band website on what a hottie he is. He emails me. So maybe I'll get a little action after all - if he's ever in LA.

Saturday night. Coachella is over for the day and we're stuck in the parking lot. We turn off the engine and listen to Shamanic Dream. "So Be It," the shamans sing, over and over. We drift off. I sleep with my friends in their tent. I am woken up by the heat at 8 a.m. I go to the port-a-pottie. I decide it's time to go back home to Venice. Try to find someone to take my ticket. No luck. Finally as we're about to drive off, I say, "Hey, anybody want a ticket?" They ask how much and I say it's free. This girl had lost her ticket for that day and was trying to buy another one. I give her my ticket. She was so grateful. The hug she gave me flowed such positiveness into my life that at that moment, I forgot everything and was so content. I got the ticket for free and I was hoped to sell it, but I guess it was nice to pass along the karma on. The hug totally validated that.

Sunday: I arrive home and am wired off the mocha I drank in the car. I shower, meticulously. Then I jump in the ocean and get all dirty again, in a different way, and I get a sunburn, which I'd avoided doing the rest of the weekend, in the desert. I sleep. Blessed sleep, between sheets. I appreciate the amount of water I've just used, for two showers and handwashing and toilet flushing and whatever else, since getting home. The desert makes you appreciate that, but you soon forget. I wake up and go to Billy's drum circle. I light candles all around the room, and I play. I play without caring. At the end, I get complimented on my drumming. Yee Hah. Divine Yee Hah. Who knew? I'm a classically trained pianist, a Boston-educated business consultant, a gangly adolescent, and now I'm told I can drum. My light is shining. I want more. Oh, that Leo moon.

Monday morning. I go to work. Top three websites today: the Ebay wedding dress, Michael Bach's Optical Illusion pages, and Kelley's Blue Book. Bottom three: Awful Plastic Surgery Dot Com, the Abu Ghraib prison photos, and an Orange County travel writer's perspective on shopping in Santa Monica. Stay away from us, Orange Curtain detainees. I spend a lot of time on Amazon looking at CD covers, unable to listen. Because I'm at work. I love Fusion Anomaly Dot Net. I spend a lot of time on that too after the Coachella hottie's website gets me thinking about the Eleusinian mysteries.

Monday evening. I go to the chiropractor and get the kink in my neck mostly worked out. I go home and jump in the ocean with Tim. Tim is my neighbor. We spend some time on the roof drying off. We look at the stars. It's awfully romantic. I go home to my apartment, he goes home to his.

Tuesday morning. "Work." Websites visited include: The lady who JC Penney sued for trying to use too many coupons (totally legitimately) has sued them back and won hundreds of thousands of dollars for emotional distress; the Buddy Christ dashboard statue; the words to Suffering& Smiling off Red Hot + Riot; Forbes; Fucked Company; Healing Sounds; and the Movie Poop Shoot.

Tuesday night I go to get my mom a Mother's Day gift and end up at the yoga studio buying her a bearskin -- actually, a sheep skin -- those white fluffy rug things. I decide to take a yoga class and Harijiwan is a piece of work. He swears, tells corny jokes, then starts the exercises. He looks so funny breathing in, frowning exaggeratedly with his bushy grey beard and rolling his eyes back into his head. I start laughing, but realize this is serious. This is kundalini so I better get on it. We sing, we chant, we do brain-balancing yogic breathing, we exercise, we all gather in a circle and heal a lady and a child. And that is that. We go home.

Wednesday: Get into work really late and actually work a little. Spend a lot of time on conference calls. Go back to West Hollywood intending to pick up the shoes I left at the yoga studio yesterday, but never make it. Go to acupuncture instead. This time Yuri has me lie face up. He's never done that before. I keep my eyes closed. I don't want to know. What the needles look like protruding out of me. He says, let's get you even higher than we normally do, and he hooks the needles up to some kind of electricity-producing machine. He turns it on and turns it up until my hand twitches and my speech slurs. Then he turns it down a notch. Then he leaves me there for half an hour. Whoa. I get home and VisorGrrl comes over for a visit. She's a sweetie. We vibe. Our connection is almost psychic. Our brains are wired very similarly. And, even after electrostimulated acupuncture, it's exciting.

Thursday: At work I read a cool thing from Florinda Donner. Tonight's activity is Divine Feminine Ecstasy. No, not with VisorGrrl. It's a seminar. Up at an A-frame in the hills. All women. The furnishings are lush, as is the view, and the place reeks of amber. The cat is fluffy. The women are old, mostly mothers. I am the youngest one. I size up the instructor. She is not that much older than me. She is annoying and I can't figure out why. Later I learn she's a Cancer. The seminar is fun. We stretch our pelvises, dance around in pairs and play like little girls. It's freeing. I'm astonished. They serve Godiva chocolates at the end and I leave satisfied, fired up and ready to go: open heart and open hips, and you can take on the world. I'm more of a white tantra than red tantra fan, but still, an enjoyable evening. It and the Florinda Donner interview were both pointing to the same thing The Power Of Now, and probably a dozen other spiritual traditions, point at. Mind becoming No Mind. My temporal lobes are tickled. Hey, Godiva is like Go plus Diva! I never realized that before.

Friday morning: The CEO of our company is in Los Angeles. This is the first time a CEO has ever come to this office. It's fantastic and I hope it happens more often. He is old, white, British, and in culture shock. I sit in front during his presentation. I try to "feel his heart" like they taught us last night and it feels like it has gnarly black cobwebs on it. Yes, my boss's boss's boss's boss's boss's heart is in need of a good spring cleaning and maybe some meds. That can't be good. But his IQ is in the right place, if not his EQ, and maybe there's hope for this firm yet. Maybe the psychic was right -- in January she told me to stay with this job because, in the symbology for the cards I drew on it, the dragon's in the west. She said stay until the end of 2005. Whoa, no way, I said. Hold off, she said, the job market's shitty. She said massive raises and promotions were coming, that I should stick with it, that I could be CEO if I wanted to, but that that would make me spiritually miserable, o to leave in 1.5 years, but to write a really good leaving letter, and they'd be begging me to stay. I like that image. I like the image of me in a great suit with great hair, perfect varicose-vein-less calves and haute shoes, strolling out with a flourish, see ya suckers, going on to something good and fabulous -- much as I left Boston to come to LA. Yeah, I wouldn't mind a repeat of that. Not that I ever had great hair. And Nine West isn't exactly haute. But who cares? I have okay hair. I still do.

Sombrella lives in Venice, Califas. She is not a typical citizen (Venizen) of Venice. She has a car, a nine-to-five job, doesn't claim to be an artist, nor does she surf. But, in our opinion here at Built Boyle, she does have great hair!