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and you were there, and you, and you!
Saturday, Apr. 28, 2007 | link

I just woke up from a terrible dream! I was sitting there, looking down at my legs, when all of a sudden I noticed that I had a thatch of pubic hair growing behind each knee. And I didn't get upset or try to shave it off or anything. I just dream-sighed to myself, "Oh, so this is what getting old looks like."

(PS: My diary has officially moved over to my official evany.com website. Let's meet up over there!)

links, photos, and a splendid cause
Thursday, Apr. 19, 2007 | link

Hello hardbodies, are you maybe in the mood to do something nice for someone this grey Thursday? Oh good! Because my friend Megan (not Los Angeles Megan, just so no one's confused) is in the very middle of kicking and punching and chemo-ing back at colon cancer, and to offset the ridiculous medical bills, her friends have donated a bunch of really good goods and services for a fundraising auction at eBay. There's some very nice stuff up there, stuff you might even be tempted to bid on even if it weren't for the best kind of cause, so please take a looksee. But hop to it -- just like the Quaid-infested movie film post apocalyptic global warming (official tagline: "This year, a sweater won't do."), this auction ends the day after tomorow (Saturday). (NOTE: If you're interested in bidding on one of the items that are listed as only open for bidding by people who know Megan personally, please email me and I'll see about getting you on The List.)

In other news, here's a quick summary of last week's trip to Los Angeles:

Once I was done with Lottie the great dane puppy (the softest, shiniest dog in the whole wide world, and also the owner of the smallest, sharpest teeth that ever were, LA Megan calls her "Land Shark"), I headed back to the Long Beach airport:

JetBlueman: You do realize you're twenty-four hours late for your flight?
BlueEvany: Wait, what?
JetBlueman: Your flight was scheduled for yesterday.
BlueEvany: Wow. I'm sorry, I was so sure it was for today. I guess I've finally gone crazy.

And in even other news: Edutopia (contributing edited by friend Chris) just published a short essay of mine, Techno Prisoners, also the Desperate recapping is still going strong, and TED.com (the website behind the annual hot-ticket conference in Monterey) just relaunched with an amazing, razzle-dazzle display of talk archives (a few of which were synopsized and biographied by yours truly). Getting busy getting busy!

(PS: My diary has officially moved over to my official evany.com website. Let's meet up over there!)

thumb-typing at you from the oakland airport
Friday, Apr. 06, 2007 | link

Oh boy, I'm at the dark end of another one of my zany plans right now: in an effort to save some cab fare, and force myself into a situation where I'd maybe get some writing done, I had Marco drop me off at the airport on the way to work, at 6am, seven long hours before my flight. (Oh, I'm going to LA on a fun last-minute trip, for FREE -- Megan had some Jet Blue miles that were about to expire -- and Liz Dunn is going to be in town, doing some rock thing, and also Anna Beth and Allison are visiting from their various far-faraways, because yay it's Pam's birthday, and Megan has a brand new Great Dane puppy named Lottie, and Tom and Mouki and their teeny twins are here, and Gene's band is playing somewhere, and my three god children and family are all fired up and bunny crazy for Easter...so my worlds are all aligned for glory in Los Angeles this weekend!) Except that the airport people won't let me check my bags until four hours before my flight, and the Peet's is on the wrong side of the XRay forcefield, and I can't really start writing until my coffee situation is sorted out...so here I sit in the Giant Burger, in my fluffy sleeping socks, surrounded by bags, hoodie hood up, just another airport zombie.

PS: As anticipated, I maybe totally jinxed the car with yesterday's anticipatory post! I bought it, yes I did, sure, and then I drove it home, parked it, got out, noticed I was taking up two spots, got back in and...the car wouldn't start. It fired right up when I test drove it, and when I got in to drive it away -- the two situations in which it would have been very helpful for a problematic car to reveal its non-starting ways, but no -- the Accent waited until I was the free, clear owner to dig in its heels. How rotten is THAT? Marco was able to jumpstart it this morning, and he's going to get the battery checked out using the battery-o-meter at his work, so maybe it'll turn out to be something minor, like a new battery. And not, sigh, an alternator, or some other devilish $500 thing. (Why is it that automotive disasters always ring in at $500, minimum?) Keep those legs crossed for me! But also...it turns out the car has this unfortunate spoiler that I'm now minorly regretting? It sort of ruins the nice, nurse-shoe line of the car? Which was the whole point of the thing? Oh boy, have I made the wrong decision, buying this car?? (This is my way: I make headlong, gut-motivated decisions, then I experience small, haunting regrets which linger until the next big ill-advised purchase comes along to distract me.)

PPS (later): They just lost one of my shoes in the XRay machine! Poof! Oh, there it is...it just got trapped in space and time for about three weird, panicky minutes. Oh, if only you could talk, left denim American Eagle slingback sneaker! What a story you could tell.

(PS: My diary has officially moved over to my official evany.com website. Let's meet up over there!)

the cream of some hyundai
Thursday, Apr. 05, 2007 | link

So it's been maybe three years since I sold my rolling hug of a car, and much to my surprise, I haven't really missed it. When I sold it I was living in San Francisco, where public transportation took me pretty much everywhere I wanted and needed to go, and it was really nice not having to worry about whether or not my car was going to start leaking gas and/or burst into flames at any moment. But then I moved to Oakland, and started to feel the pain and strain of not having a car at my disposal.

Since moving to Lakeshore Land, a simple trip to the vet involves driving Marco to work all the way over in Marin, at 5:30 in the morning (!), then back home to wait until the vet opens, then over to Berkeley for some medicinal Piggy poking and prodding, then home for a few hours, then back to Marin to pick up Marco -- basically the whole day is wasted on the sad fussbudgetry of automotive maneuvering. Throw in a pair of airport pick-ups and drop-offs, bulky luggage, and a dinner reservation (as was the happy challenge during Swivel magazine Brangien's ultra fun visit last weekend, YAY!), and the car-free lifestyle becomes an impossible puzzle of borrowed cars and brain sizzling hyperscheduling.

And then, right in the middle of all my recent coordicar frustrations, I found the exact ride I'd been (idly) looking for on Craigslist these past few months: ladies and gentlegiants, the Hyundai Accent Hatchback!

After six years of the ridiculous vintage car with whiplash seats and zero power steering (but five different ashtrays!), I was set on buying a car that had airbags and retracting seatbelts. I also wanted something completely nondescript, because I was ready for a break from the rolling conversation piece. I wanted something that I could lose in a parking lot, something that wouldn't tempt crazy people to corner me for hours to talk up after-market wooden steering wheels. And the Hyundai Accent is just such a car! It also has an appealing awkward ugliness, something that speaks directly to the part of me that so appreciates the orthopedic nurse look.

Isn't it beautiful?

Other variables I also wanted in my next car: a 5-speed stick shifter, air conditioning, under 80k miles, hatchback (I like that stunty shape), SILVER (the very Lone Ranger best for hiding dirt), and under $5k.

And this posting on Craigslist, it had every single one of the musts on my list, AND it was only $3800! So I scrambled for my phone, and a very nice woman answered right on the first ring.

ME: I'm calling about the car you have posted on Craigslist. The Accent? Is it still available? Because it is PERFECT IN EVERY WAY!

CAR WOMAN, distracted: Oh, uh. It's available, yes...

ME: How about tomorrow. Could I come see it tomorrow?

CAR WOMAN: Unhh. Maybe?

ME: ...

CAR WOMAN: Actually...okay, since you're a woman, I'll just tell you: I think my water just broke? I actually thought you were my mom calling.

ME: Oh wow. WOW! This is so exciting! Is it your first?

CAR WOMAN: Yeah...and that's the thing: since I'm new to this and I'm not really sure what's going on, we've already had one false alarm this week. So maybe I'm not having a baby today? I don't know. But we're heading off to the hospital now, just to see what's what.

ME: Yay!

CAR WOMAN: So either it's not happening and we'll be back home in a few hours, and I'll give you a call about coming by tomorrow, or...

ME: Maybe, if I don't hear from you today, I'll just wait a few days until you're settled in and give you a call then?

CAR WOMAN: Oh, I'm very responsible, I'll for sure give you a call.

ME: No rush! I mean, you're having a BABY! Maybe. Actually you should probably get off the phone and hop to it, right?

WOMAN: Ahhh...okay. But how about you give me your name and number, and I'll call you either later today, or later...in the week.

ME: After you HAVE A BABY!

CAR WOMAN [laughing]: Well, keep your fingers crossed.

ME [miraculously managing not to say, "And you keep those legs...uncrossed"]: Right so my name is "Evany," that's "Evan" with a "Y"...

CAR WOMAN: Hey! "Evan" is what we're naming the baby!

ME: Nooo! Ha! Well I've always suspected that "Evany" originally came from someone who was hoping for a boy but had a girl instead and made the adjustment on the fly, and...Oh my god I'm babbling. You need to get off the phone! Right now! And have a baby!

# # #

So I gave her my number and then a few hours later her husband called to say that they were at the hospital and the baby thing was happening for real! And now, four days later, they're all home and tonight Marco and I are going to go see the car, and the baby.

My ever-practical mother, upon hearing the story of the car, said, "You should really have a mechanic check out the car before you buy it." Which of course is completley sage advice. And yet...they're naming the baby Evan! That's a total sign of meant-to-be-ness! What more do I need to know??? I'm actually thinking of publishing an alternative Consumer Reports (the Magical Mystery Guide?), that gives buyers pointers about all the mystical forces and signs that clearly indicate a winning purchase -- a car with all the features you're looking for? At BELOW the right price? With a significantly named baby in the mix? Buy! Buy! Buy!

So I have my money-order all ready to go, and I think it's going to take something truly off-putting, like a urine-style stench or a non-functioning engine, for me to pass on this car. (Watch I totally just jinxed it, ha.)

Unfortunately/fortunately last night Marco announced that he had lucked into tickets to tonight's "very exciting" Sharks game, and given the timing of everything, this means we'll have to look at the car on the way to the game. So if I do indeed buy the car, we'll...have to drive both his car and my NEW SILVER HYUNDAI ACCENT to the Shark Tank? Or leave one car behind and then circle back for it later? At 10 o'clock, in the dark, with our brains frozen with Dippin' Dots? Huh, maybe owning a second car isn't really going to simplify my life at all. Oh life.

(PS: My diary has officially moved over to my official evany.com website. Let's meet up over there!)

(PS: My diary has officially moved over to my official evany.com website. Let's meet up over there!)

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