Perforated Lines (you can't resist 'em!)

(quake map)
-- Tuesday, November 30, 1999 --



10:48 a.m. Another earthquake -- this one was like a truck hitting the house next door, or two doors down. A muffled one-time crash. Not a sustained roller. However, it looks like this one was indeed, right down the road ... in the Valley somewhere.

More in a minute. And yes, once again, it woke me up. (See yesterday -- I was doing research. Stop snirking. I was.) And there! A strong aftershock. This one feels angry.

11:08 a.m. These were small ones, 3.2 and 3.1 ... but centered just south of Sherman Oaks. Very very populated area.

3:39 p.m. More of the shaking -- hard shaking.

12:37 a.m. This is an odd entry on an odd day. Very quiet day intellectually; noisy as all get-out in the world outside my head. It seems no matter what -- I'm going to be asleep when an earthquake comes, even if it's halfway through the morning. One of the big flaws of staying up all night, I tell you. Doomed to be out of step with humanity -- or am I?

Now, to try to get into step, I'm going to write the rest of this piece, tuck it carefully away behind the date, and humbly creep offstage and let the AIDS Day Without Art take center stage tomorrow.

Meanwhile, I rearranged my office a little and put the radio where I can get to it more easily. In times of emergency, assuming you can plug the sucker in, the radio still comes through the fastest. The TV stations have too many bills to pay to allow anything unprofitable like news to filter through. The web is still not responsive enough, not fast enough. Not yet.

Now, while trying to find any earthquake info, I couldn't help but notice that the radio is also full of: music! That's right, tunes. Lots of songs to listen to while I'm here at the machine. I'm going to try it, a little. I have to be very very careful. I really can't concentrate -- I've turned it off to write this piece, for instance -- and I get too excited.

Dance all around the office ... where was I? Such memories. That's one of the oddest possible things about living through more years -- more memories. How can I deal with songs from when I was going to my first fraternity parties: Hey, you! Get offa my cloud? followed right by Hollywood hills ... Hollywood nights ... I'm thirty years older ... how can one person contain so many mistakes and longings and really deep dreams?

We only need one song. One song for that summer, maybe another one for a big breakup, a drive in the rain blinded by tears. There have been so many songs; so much smoke.

Beware if you're very young and feeling very deeply -- it never goes away. Your heart is going to feel like cube steak after a few more years, and still it beats for more.

Maybe I'd better be a little more careful with the music here ...


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