fj: (Default)
James The Insane Movie Director was getting his short screened in a major museum in London, on a 16 foot screen on an endless loop in the evening as part of a late exhibit. Of course I'd be there, so I tucked the skinny dark green low-rise check pants nto leather Wellington boots, put on my Captain America T-shirt I feel I can now wear again in London, and the Miyake black suit jacket, and was ready to go. I was not repeating last week's mistake of looking bland. In fact, I didn't like any of my overcoats with it so I grabbed a fleece gray trow off the sofa and wrapped it around me for a Yamamoto Meets Jean Valjean look. These people do not know me, they don't know I am a meek nerd most of the time.

Of course, when they said 'late' the museum meant 10 PM, so I got to see all of two minutes of the film but I did get to see how busy it had been, and James introduced me some, and I mingled, after which we went to a local pub, where we talked and mingled more. One person congratulated me on my new president-elect, which I had to correct, but then we talked anyway, another one was appalled at the Porp 8 passing in California of all places! and I had to explain that 'Liberal Everything-Goes California' is a Hollywood / TV export snowjob just like the idea that 95% of the US does not have awful weather most of the time. Which it does, and much of California is very conservative, it's just that neither meme makes it on Lost and Scrubs much.

And it was all great fun because I met new people and it was just a great Friday night. After which James and I needed food and his partner and friends wanted to go home and smoke, so the five of us said goodbye to the rest and piled into a taxi to Seven Dials, and James and I had late night cheap noodles and beef in a gleaming white plastic joint I'd never have gone into alone and talked about self-worth when your deals fall through, and needing love, and just picking yourself up out of holes when you stupidly made yourself believe you were Golden but you were not, and making rent, and just find meaning and fuck, nobody is hiring but the sites and the shows still need to be made so we must be able to get in at some level.

And I go "Dude, get this: we're having noodles at 11:30 in fucking London after a night of watching your movie be screened in the fucking Tate and everyone came by to see it. That's pretty special. Not everyone gets lives like this, you know." Then we went to his house and joined the others, where I got to hear from a Social Worker about bizarre cases, we discuss having sex with USers, and the actor waxes on working with a major movie star in the movie he is now shooting, does random local accents, tells me Belfast and South African are the hardest ones to do, trades camp accents with Jonathan, James' partner, from different backgrounds so accurately it sounds like I walked into my gay gym, and does the Hamlet speech in one single breath as a party trick. I came home at 4.

These people now think I wear big shawls out when it is cold. Hey, maybe I just will.
fj: (Default)
Now you live in LA. Now you live in London. Now you work here. Now there. When will any of it feel real?

Posted with AutoPostBot
fj: (Default)
I can has sofa! And clothes! And the moving brutes who get it up the stairs!

Posted with AutoPostBot
fj: (Default)

Summer Night
"Summer Night", Nokia N73, London, 2008

fj: (Default)
Out to an eritrean restaurant and a pub with Derek. 10000 experiences and i will have them all.

Posted with AutoPostBot
fj: (UK)
Well, caught up on almost all paperwork. Unpacked.

Seems my furniture arrived in the UK while I was gone. Left a voice mail to follow-up, hope to get that delivered soon. Crack den no more! HSBC in the UK wants me to confirm I actually live where they have been sending me all my mail for months. WaMu in the US wants me to activate a new bank card from my home phone number. I don't see myself spoofing US Caller ID from the UK, so I guess I will have to call a human.

London was beautiful yesterday, little cloudy and humid today. Took a sleeping pill (Temazepam) at 2.30 AM to make sure I would get in the rhythm here, and boy do I feel like lead today. So hot last night I slept over the covers. They don't believe in ubiquitous AC for small rental units here. While I was on holiday I was considering moving somewhere cheaper, but now the effort involved tires me when even considering it. Or maybe that's the Temazepam.

I should get dressed, I am meeting with a company to talk about me taking a permanent job. Not sure I want one now. Mercenary life has its moments, like taking a whole month off like I just did, and I am being approached for new contracts.
fj: (Default)

Yeah, Well, You Wanted To Move To London
"Yeah, Well, You Wanted To Move To London", Nokia N73, London, 2008

fj: (Default)

The Only Significant Police Presence
"The Only Significant Police Presence", Nokia N73, London, 2008



I totally shot this for [livejournal.com profile] bullneck, but when I cropped it I suddenly realized this is not a bad pic in itself.

And yes, there was a contingent of Pride protesters, corralled together and kept a street-width away by the only large contingent of these men and women in fluorescent yellow. I blew kisses at the thumpers as I walked by.

My god I am pandering to my readers! )
fj: (bqw)
We're all so over Pride. Can't commit to going, we have been going so often. We're all busy, we don't know which party we will go to, and if you have seen one parade you have seen them all really. I mean, again, year after year. We'll see. You going? Oh maybe, well, I don't think so.

Not me. I love Pride. I love the parades. I think marching is even better than just watching them, but if I have no-one to march with I love to just watch. I'll remember what it was like to march through a single row of people just gawking, or a dead stretch, and I'll instead clap and do my best to make it fun to be a marcher. "Yay Unitarians!" "Yay Lowell High GSA!" "Yay Methodists!" "Yay random drag queen!" "Honey I love the shoes!" "Yay GLBT bankers!"

And of course in a new city I had to watch the parade. So I parked myself right accoss from Selfridges, in London's busiest shopping street, now cordoned off, and got ready. And got peckish because I was early. Turns out I was in front of a Starbucks (which had the biggest contingent of barristas than I have ever seen working in a Sbucks, slamming through orders like an assembly line) and found myself for the first time ever watching a Pride parade, not in oppressive humidity, not being baked away in desert sun, but on a clear cool summer day with sanwiches and a light frappe in my hand, passing time sitting on a bus stop bench waiting for it to start. And a lovely parade it was.

Not as high in church groups as say a Boston parade, and of course no floats repeating key scenes of Mommy Dearest like in LA, but large contingents of "Yay massive amounts of glbt policemen! Yay gay rugby players! Yay glbt fire-department volunteers hey is that 'Dirty Dan'? Yay glbt British Airways in their smart uniforms I love you but could you please make the flight to Düsseldorf be on time more?" And only three bar floats or so. And very few people in leather, which sucks, because that is so the whole point. And everyone liked being clapped and cheered on.

It all ended in Trafalgar square, where I also went to, and realized I'd be wandering around knowing no-one, without a designated spot where, after years of habits, all my friends would converge on because I neither have the large group of friends yet or the history of habits, until I noticed two heavily facially-pierced leatherdudes entranced by my furry shoulders (Yes, you can see the burntan-lines of my tanktop today). So I went up to meet them because I am always down with hanging with the freaks.This was fun for a couple of hours and then I decided to move on to Soho where, I was told, everyone would be out in the street drinking all day and partying around. The novel, specific-to-Pride, part of that sentence in the UK is that they would be out in the street.

Where of course, you know, I also wouldn't know anyone and would just wander to get a feeling for my first year of Pride in London, except that I ran into Cristopher, someone I actually had met from online, and we met some new friends, and everyone was petting my back and then asking each-other if they were going to Megawoof that night -- the party for the Big, the Roided, and especially the Furry -- and of course everyone else was all "Oh I don't know, I am so tired, I have been before..." and I just said I was going. Which, after I had gone home and ate and lounged, I did. And then left early at 2AM after having seen Christopher and danced very suggestively with him, as with one random hot stranger who was into it, with some stares in the beginning from these stuck-up British musclebear homos who weren't getting into the spirit of things because their drugs obviously hadn't kicked in yet. And even then; I have never seen a room with so much wall-to-wall dancing flesh and so little actual contact. Maybe I left too early after having danced near non-stop for three hours. Maybe that was because I was tired, or maybe because on some level those frigid (non-)fuckers were annoying me.

Today I dragged myself out of bed to make it to Kensington in time to meet up for brunch with Reeta, a former Disney Mobile colleague who is visiting, who after brunch (Eggs! Pancakes!) met up with two other friends back in Soho in a notorious pastry shop (More eggs! Salmon! Hot chocolate so rich I had to slurp it spoon by spoon! Cake! Other people's cake they weren't finishing!) and then went to a pub near Picadilly to watch Wimbledon (Water! My god, please, water, nothing else!) Reeta has only seen me eat the lunches i brought into work, all steamed veggies and chicken, so she had no idea I actually could Eat, and was a little stunned. I decided not to tell her any food stories; in between processing the last months of DM, mothers dying, subsequent dead-mother jokes, and gossiping about dating experiences in the UK, we already went through enough details so intimate we can never have a normal professional relationship again anyway.



Last week in Ddorf tomorrow. I have promised myself I will write an entry on how it all actually was. I know [livejournal.com profile] susandennis wants details, and these random twitter snippets just will not do.
fj: (Default)
It's sales here in London. Which in Selfridges, the Big Store for Upscale Designer Everything, especially on a Friday, is just like Pride: gay men everywhere getting dressed up, trying to find the best they can, and hoping nobody from work sees them. I went with [livejournal.com profile] iejw, which was really great because it is hard to find shopping buddies. Hard for me to shop for myself since 2/3s of my stuff is in transit so I am not sure what I need.

Then we went to my place where I stacked open whole-grain rolls with salmon or prosciutto, tomato, orange peppers, spinach, hard boiled eggs, and cheese and put them in the oven to melt. And then left for SoHo again to go to a birthday party in a bar. I like living just a 20 minute bus ride from the center.

And I got tons of socializing done before the weekend had even started, so I am all relaxed now. I have been pretty open and relaxed about life right now. I have the whole traveling to Germany down now, I have been finally paid and have more coming. I am a bit worried about where the next gig is coming from, about how my expenses are structurally too high while I am going to indulge myself with a trip, about how I probably should move to a cheaper area, about how I still haven't received an electric bill, but largely I am ok with this all.

Weather's been pretty nice everywhere. I sleep on the meadow in Vauxhall in the sun when I can.
fj: (Default)

The Trees Are Square
"The Trees Are Square", Nokia N73, London, 2008

fj: (UK)
Oh yeah, utilities. So E-on called me back one final time that day I was on the phone with them and we figured out my downstairs neighbors were registered to my electric meter. Obviously I had a manager, and he had thought it over, and cut through what to do:
"I just need to know one thing: did you move into this property on March 3d?"
-- "Yes."
"Then we're starting an account on your name."
--"What about my downstairs neighbors?"
"That's honestly a dispute between you and them."

So now my name will be on my electric bill. I warned my neighbors they need to calculate how much electricity money I owe them for the last 3 months, and we are both wondering who has been paying the other meter...
fj: (Default)

Kinda Shock Art, Innit?
"Kinda Shock Art, Innit?", Nokia N73, London, 2008

St. Paul's

Jun. 1st, 2008 07:36 pm
fj: (Default)

St. Paul's
"St. Paul's", Nokia N73, London, 2008

St. Paul's

Jun. 1st, 2008 07:36 pm
fj: (Default)

St. Paul's
"St. Paul's", Nokia N73, London, 2008

fj: (travel)
It happened every time I drove on Sunset Boulevard. Not Hollywood Boulevard, not the squares, because those look in reality so tacky and run down compared to what you see on TV. Not in West Hollywood, because you don't see that Starbucks across from the 24 Hour Fitness much in popular consciousness either. Not just a palm tree in North Hollywood, or anything in the Valley, because I had never, and still haven't, seen Valley Girl. It happened on Sunset, when I tuned on to it from the 101. Every time. At night.

The shape of the tall palm trees and how they related to towering billboards, the chasing neon signs, the architecture I had seen a thousand times over my life from establishing shots, the shape of this wide road, Donna Summer's "Sunset People" starting to play in my head, and my brain goes "Holy shit, you live in Los Angeles". This is an amazing feeling for a middling Euro boy.

It's not going home. It's like stepping into the UFO you have heard about all your life. One of the values that are important to me Helen helped me tease out was that I want a certain level of glamor, of interestingness in where I live and what I do (although we should get in touch again to nail it down better what that means). And living in Los Angeles, yeah, even with its challenges, really had that for me, being from far and having grown up Gen X TV, in a way that Boston never did. Fuck hell yeah, I was there now. Sunset Blvd. Every time. It made me constantly miss the supermarket I should have been looking out for to turn into Poinsettia.

I get it now in London too, in spades. It's not The River. It's not any bridge, or Regent street, or Carnaby or Seven Dials or Soho, although I like going to all those places. For some reason it happens now every Thursday or Friday, after having stepped out of the Heathrow Express train from Heathrow to Paddington Station, having walked off the platform into the station, my back straight, backpack pulling my shoulders back, walking briskly after all the sitting, going down into the tube station to take the Bakerloo line to Lambeth North. I take my wallet, where I have just put my Oyster card and Tesco Clubcard and British Pounds back in from the compartment I keep them in my backpack in when I am in Germany, out of my pocket and without changing my stride, slap that wallet on the round yellow reader so the RFID chip in the Oyster card can be read and the gates can swing open and I can go home. Because home is in London, you see. I live in London now. Holy shit fuck yeah.
fj: (Default)

East End Star
"East End Star", Nokia N73, London, 2008

fj: (Default)

East End Star
"East End Star", Nokia N73, London, 2008

fj: (UK)
Just before I left, my DSL started acting up in the evenings. This saddened me, because O2 had been cheap, fast, and rock-solid up to now. I diagnosed as much as I could last night, because I really, really, really did not want to call some call center 6 time zones away and go through endless scripts of rebooting and checking my wireless. But it was unavoidable, the router was telling me the connection was going up and down like a yo-yo. I decided to eliminate as many variables as I could myself: attached the Mac laptop directly with a cable, switched off wireless, got all the settings, got ready, and called.

I chose O2 because they are not a reseller of BT, but they can go into the local switch themselves and set up their own equipment, which is why they can offer faster speeds than BT does, but also, they are responsible for the whole chain themselves. No passing the buck. I immediately got a rep on the line who took my info. Indeed, attaching the Mac with a cable made him skip most of his script, since they do not have special management software for the Mac, and yeah, wireless is not fault issue then. All I did have to do was a hard reset of the box to factory settings, but that didn't help and I was at Tier 2 within 10 minutes. Tier 2 first told me he could see I had dropped 90 times in the last 8 hours, and they didn't like that at all. (I was more wondering just how much they could see about my link... If tomorrow I get an intervention for checking ICHC, I will know.) He first had me switch filters -- I never knew a solid state filter could fail, but he said it happens, and he called me back on my mobile -- and when my link still kept dropping while I was still on the call with him, he decided to set the line tolerance for noise on my line to really low (which degrades speed but makes the connection very reliable) so he could push the latest firmware to my box. Once the new firmware was on, he reset the line back to normal tolerance, and then he told me to browse for two minutes. I told him I already had been doing so obsessively. It was working. Still, we both agreed it was too early to close the case, so we agreed the case number will remain open till mid-Saturday. It was really pleasant, good troubleshooting as if we were both software professionals, a willingness to exchange information so I could learn, and he wasn't intent on getting me off the line ASAP at all. Also, my box is faster than ever now.

As for Gas & Electricity, I really expected a bill by now, which I haven't gotten. I did, out of curioisity, open a bill from British Gas that keep coming for the previous tenant: You Are About To Be Disconnected This Week, And We Will Tack On £200 For Doing So. Um. Um. Eeeep! I called British Gas collections department and I said, look I do not have a customer number for me, but I do for the previous tenant and this ain't right. The collections woman said that this was no big deal and she would put me through to the moving department since I was a new move (Hello? I have called 3 times now?) but I said "No." Huh? "Before you do that, please tell me I won't get disconnected this week?" Oh, I won't get disconnected this week, seriously. The moving department was annoyed on my behalf as much as I was, and said he would stop the bill for the previous tenant now and start me on a whole new account and can I just have your last name again? Oh well, let's hope this one sticks. Also, if I want to they could also do electricity? I answered no, tell me who my current provider is now because I expect there's another screw-up there?

And indeed, calling E-on, I have hit the mother of all possible screw ups: my downstairs neighbors are paying my electricity bill. heck, if I were them I'd want to do that too since I am never home. You see, there are these two meters in the hallway, and they each have a serial number, and they are labeled which flat they are for, and when I mentioned my serial number the man said "Ok, we'll stop the bills for the previous tenant" and on a hunch I said, can you tell me who that is? He can't, that is confidential. "Look, if it the C*****, thos are my downstairs neighbours, and you can't just take them off the account" because hell if I am going to have my neighbors slammed. He called a super and we had to now test whose meter was whose, can I please switch on something that consumes a lot of energy, go look which meter is running fast, switch the devices off, and see if the mete goes slow? This is how you test a power meter from afar. I switched on the washer to tumble dry, and ran the food processor. And the test confirms what I expected: my downstairs neighbors are paying my power bill, and lord knows who is paying the other meter.

E-on is dumbfounded about what to do now. They'll call me back.
fj: (Default)
Going home at 4.30 am after carousing at an underground trannie gabberhouse club in the eastend.

Posted with AutoPostBot

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags

Syndicate

RSS Atom

Most Popular Tags

Style Credit

Page generated Jul. 22nd, 2017 12:38 am
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios
July 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 2017