happenstance

First guy I met worth my time in LA.. who lives in SF.

(I have all the luck sometimes)

and I randomly ran into him after my martial arts class in a little artsy/hip hop indie clothing shop by Big Robot.

He was with a gorgeous brunette girl friend of his.

“Oh hey I know you.” I said as I brushed by him on accident.

“Small world. I’m not surprised you shop here.”

He came in town for a baseball game.

“How nerdy is that?”

“Not nerdy at all… I love baseball.”

Gotta love running into hot boys when you look like crap right after a workout. At least I didn’t smell.

But it was nice to see you again oh hot doppleganger, you.

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The List Blogs: Weekend summation

Here’s what I got accomplished this weekend:

  • Errands and personal business
  • Worked on resumes
  • Looked for new job leads
  • Drank with a friend in from San Diego
  • Watched 30 days of Night
  • Showed my friend Mirror’s Edge
  • Discussed my super secret project
  • Purchased some postcards
  • Ate grits at S &W
  • forgot that they only take cash
  • P aroused the internet some more for job leads
  • Talked to a couple of friends about work
  • Taught my son how to cheat in a video game
  • Applied to be on a game show
  • Studied for my motorcycle permit test
  • broke a dresser
  • Had chai with a new friend
  • Dumped a full camera’s worth of video onto my computer
  • Picked a flower
  • Walked 2 miles
  • Took a drive just because
  • Discovered some new music
  • Talked to a boy I like (that’s not a douchebag or a liar)
  • Ate cake
  • Created 8 bit art
  • Found a new place to hang out at
  • Talked to friends
  • Took pictures
  • Discussed further pictures to be taken
  • Read a bit of Transmetropolitan (trade #2)
  • oh and washed dishes finally.

Hurray for a full weekend!

Random factoids: Marine edition

courtesy of sexyoutofcontext, tumblr

courtesy of sexyoutofcontext, tumblr

Random factoids o’ Jena:

I have always had a fascination in all things underwater and scientifical. My favorite animals are octupi and seahorses. I find them to be creations of magic and wonderment that somehow managed to make it into reality, as if by mistake.

I’ve milled over getting tatoos of them many times. I currently do not have any tattoos, which also shocks people upon hearing. I haven’t ruled it out yet. There is still more than enough time for it. So who knows, right?

I love the ocean so very much that at one point I also considered being a marine biologist. My father told me later that one of the best schools in the country for that is in San Diego.. so regardless of which career choice (I’ve known I’ve wanted to be in entertainment since I was born.) I’d made, I was destined to live there someday.

Ah San Diego, my home… how I miss you so.

And my dearest ocean? It’s been days. Let’s make a date alright?

When random is routine

Once upon a time…

I often get lost on purpose. There seems to be a comfort in the unknown. Of the excitement and fear of going missing in an urban jungle.

I told my friends I’d be there in 20 minutes, but once I saw the glow, I was drawn to it. Maybe it’s ADD. Maybe I’m just a constant tourist.

When I lived in IL there was a road that went past an oil field. Nothing but wasteland and metal and a straight stretch of road. Familiar.

I remember looking up at my daddy in pigtails and loose teeth…

“Is this a city? Is this where you work?”

My dad always worked downtown. Your stereotypical corporate banker. Horrible taste in any decor. Suitcase. Double breasted.. not pinstripe. Style and him were never paired, and he didn’t care. Hell all of his socks were the same color so he doesn’t have to make an effort making sock pairs.

Awesome. I always hated making sock pairs. It was the dreaded family chore we’d put off for months. 3 kids. That’s a shitload of socks. And that’s why the only ones I own have obnoxious designs and patterns on em. Well, not all of them. I went to a catholic school… I love argyle socks. I guess that makes me a bit weird. or cliche. or both.

But back to the tale.
Years later. I learn to drive. It’s actually a main road… or pseudo main road. It was somewhere I had to drive all the time. You could speed down that road. I love to speed. Bad bad bad.

A little secret. This was my piece of solace. This was my piece of… unconventional detox. Zen in a city of lights.

Sunday night on the way to my friends place for amazing homemade pizza, olympics ceremony endings (truth be told I really didn’t care but my friends found it gorgeous), booze, a favorite movie of the crew-beerfest, and Civ4.

I hate Civ 4. I love the Diablo series. But who the hell doesn’t. Not my style. But whatever. Give me an RPG or an MMO any day. Lan party? FPS it up. Frag frag frag.

I got consumed by lights. I don’t know this city. I’m constantly lost.

Which one of you cares to be my personal GPS or come along for the ride?  Srsly I would adore it if someone bought me a GPS- my roommate would love you too.  I need to start a fund.
I’ve been here 5 weeks. So much to blog about but not enough time.
I want to work with casting. (There’s a story coming about that too)

I want to be a suit. Omg I’m my dad… but with a much much cooler job. Or.. well um.

Broke artist. Rich in dreams though.

They say that people are in exactly the place that they should be.  Months ago when San Diego fell apart.. Wow.  I am just a vessel- taking the wheel to wherever it guides me.

Because I don’t have GPS 😉

Random factoids

Episode 1:

It drives me nuts if theres not a window in a bathroom.  I have specifically not lived places because they didn’t have one.

I’m near positive I’m hypoglycemic.  Beware when I haven’t eaten in awhile… it’s not pretty. Can haz cheeseburger pls?

The last time I seriously dated someone local was when I was in San Diego in 2006.  I’m a repeat offender to long distance relationships. Ironically the last person I dated semi seriously is currently in San Diego.

No matter how often I tell people how short I am and/or that I have 3 kids, they are always shocked.

I’m a natural blonde.  My hair gets lighter in the sun.  I haven’t had it my true natural color since high school.

I will not sleep with anyone until I know the answer to 2 simple questions.  What they are, I don’t reveal until after I’ve gotten the answers.

Even though I love the ocean, I’m still afraid to learn how to surf.  (I want to conquer that phobia this year though)

I rarely memorize a phone number.  My dad has had the same cell for years… I still couldn’t tell you what it is without looking it up.

My favorite actress is Audrey Hepburn. (Like you didn’t see that one coming)

The game that got me hooked onto RPGs was Dragon Warrior on the NES.

Norman Bates and I share a common interest in taxidermy.  I own a kit but don’t believe in hunting for sport- so haven’t used it yet.  (Feel free to tell me when Fluffy dies- I’d love to practice)

I have never owned a sex toy.

I remember more of the 80s than the 90s.

My favorite song is by a band that has long past broken up: B side by Korea Girl

My best friends live in Alaska and the Chicagoland area respectively.

In Jena time, “I’ll be ready in 5 minutes” means 45 mins.  Not because it takes me that long to actually get dressed, but because I wait until the absolute last minute a majority of the time.  (Usually I’m fucking around on the computer.. erm working)

I can pick objects up with my toes.

I have driven naked on more than one occasion.. in broad daylight.

If a man doesn’t drive a stick, it’s huge minus points with me.

All of my children’s names are net/comic/anime/video game references.

I have never not played a lead in any onstage performance that I’ve been in.

My first kiss was in kindergarten, when 3 boys tackled me and kissed me at the same time.  Yes, orgies started young… just kidding.

My first celebrity was Leisha Hailey from the Murmers, the L Word, and the Yoplait commercials.

When I lived in IL, and was upset I would often disappear.  However I would always end up in the same 3 places afterwards: a store to get a Pez dispenser, driving down a road near an oil field to look at the lights, and then at my cousin’s grave.

Going red this time around was an accident that just sort of stuck.  I’ve debated going back to black again but have chickened out everytime since then.

I have a particular fixation for really badly done horror movies.

I have one sister and one brother.  There is very little family resemblance.

I have worn the same ribbon in my hair for 2 consecutive birthdays.  I will most likely wear it again for the next one.

I’d rather not smoke then smoke unmentholated cigarettes.

If its obscure or independent- music, art, comic book, or movie, you are halfway to sold for me giving it a shot.

I have a scar on my chin that matches my dad.  He got his falling on the edge of a bar.  I got mine when I was dropped in a cheer leading lift in 8th grade.

2 days and still going like the energizer bunny..

It was supposed to be a semi normal day Friday, despite the holiday. After trips back and forth to LA, SD, and Bakersfield.. I thought the 4th was going to be relatively quiet. Things with the roommate skyrocketed into horrific. I was so ready to go to work already, but not wanting to deal with any drama.

No one wanted to be at work. It was extremely laid back, and for once.. everyone got along. My plans for the night afterward were initially to take refuge with a notebook and ride to some patch of grass.. look up at the stars and have some solace. It sounds a bit emo, but I can assure you, its not meant to sound it completely. I just have a lot on my mind sometimes and tend to disappear off the radar momentarily.

Thankfully, I have some amazing friends that are able to catch me before I completely become a blip. Family didn’t call. Friends did though.

“I’m not going to let you spend it alone. Let’s do what we can to figure out how to get you here, or I’ll grab you later anyway.”

Worth the drive. It means so much to me. Multiple friends.

I wasn’t supposed to get out early enough to go, but that changed. I was cleared from my boss and made the mad dash to get home and change. We left later than we’d intended. The traffic clogged up a bit as we neared our destination.

“And that is why everyone in LA should have a thing of bubbles in their car.. because you never know.. and what a fun way to pass the time…”

We were headed to the ocean.. my place of zen. Friends (nerds), ribs, booze, chatter, movies, video games… awesome.

“Are we going to actually go in the water or should I not even bother with my swimsuit?”

“I’m not sure but you can bring it if you want to.. it’s really up to you..”

It was among one of the first things packed.

“I already had it packed anyway from San Diego.. he wanted to hit the jacuzzi when I was there.”

My friend just smiled.

As it got closer to the fireworks, the convoy of us headed towards the beach. Dan was the fearless leader, with a tripod nearly as big as me pushed over one arm, and a backpack nearly as heavy.

I could smell the ocean and someone smoking djarums. Blew bubbles and skipped. A stranger gave me a black and I lit up. Ah, escape.. escape. And we weren’t even there yet.

The ocean called to me. It took me all of 20 minutes before curiousity got the best of me… I pulled Steve and Dan with me.

“I just want to find out how cold it is..”

Until sunset, I was in the water. The beach truck rolled in and everyone got out. We made robot firetruck boobs in the sand, and headed back towards the rest of the group. Fireworks from all over. Malibu, Santa Monica, Marina Del Ray..

“Over there is where all the rich people are.. all on their roofs, laughing at all us broke people with our crappy public displays…”

I’ve lived in California for nearly a decade. This was my first fourth on the beach… and there’s only one thing that was missing. Yet, I would look at the sky and dream… we are looking up at the same sky, even if we’re in different cities.. living our parallel lives… not knowing what the future will bring.. fate? One could only hope.

The moment is broken by pings. I put it on the back burner. It’s not time right now.. and who knows if it ever will be. A friend texts me last minute.

“Would you like to come out and cover the anime expo with me tmorrow for TechZulu?”

The future.. goes back to my roots. I’m going to be up all night in proactive mood. Ah the workaholic in me…

“Get some sleep so your eyes aren’t puffy tomorrow, and we’ll talk more”

Excitement. So many reasons. Doors opening… building blocks on relationships.. personal, professional.. friendships… steps forward.. steps back.. new experiences… more…

We packed up the rest of our things and headed back to Trina and Matt’s. Matt made this concotion affectionately called “the ritz.”

“Dare I even ask what’s in this or just drink it?”

We walked down memory lane a little bit. Matt showed us some of his stuff from film school. We talked about nerdy silly things. Played some Scene it… which, I might add, when playing with 2 film school graduates, is a bit.. intimidating to say the least.

Knowing that the day had to start early, we headed back for me to couch surf once again. My friends.. so very gracious to open their homes to me.

Awoke early to prepare for the long day ahead. A shower to wash away the sea. Singing “You Don’t Own Me..” Not a care in the world.

We went to the store for sustenence. I was thinking about making some seafood omlets.. still focused on those moments of zen yesterday. But opted instead for a breakfast burrito. Accompanied, of course, by some chai.

I put on some jazz and cooked. Sang and danced around.

“He hasn’t let me cook for him yet. One of these days though.. perhaps when we both have the time..”

And then the expo itself. Everything was a rush. My friend Trina of Gaming Angels ended up bringing me. It was my first anime con, and I was a bit nervous for no reason. I’ve always wanted to dress up and go to one, but hadn’t yet. And now I was going as press.

Finding Marc was crazy in itself. The con was massive. Rush was the norm though. Newsworthy.

I was fortunate enough to meet up with the folks from Girl Gamer. They are such great people. It’s funny in a way how small of a world it is. It seemed that all of us knew eachother before the meeting. Paralell constants.

I knew a few others that had mentioned that they were going to be there.. just barely missed on a friend who dressed as Jack Sparrow. The gaming journalist convoy… in addition to us, was also Coin-Op Tv, All Games, and if I’ve missed someone, I apologize. Let me know if you were there and I missed the link, I’ll gladly add it.

My day, however was dominated primarily with awesomes Girl Gamer and Marc of TechZulu.

The day was a complete success. Not for the fact that everything went as perfectly as planned, because with these things, it rarely ever does, which is half the thrill of it.. but because I firmly believe in the strength of the connections that were made there. It is one of my loves of the advent of social media. We have small worlds, but when we share passions.. I look forward to seeing how things go for everyone. Where their paths take them. I wish them good luck in their journeys… parallel.

There were smiles all around that day. It was an experience I am forever thankful to have had.

Pulled from place to place…

Taking pictures.

Interviews.

Near interviews.

Secrets.

Finding out about why people put so much devotion into the things they enjoy.

Logistics.

“Are you ok with all of this? This adventure?” Marc said.

and I turned to him and said..

“Are you kidding? This is what I live for…”

Travel.

Journalism.

Friendships.

Technology.

Business.

The ocean.

A camera.

A notebook.

Living at the edge of life.

Carpe Diem.

[And now to shower, get dim sum, and some more beach time before going back to hipster jesusville.. Pictures soon to come, and sidebar links updated later]

in 2 day increments

It seems that every couple of days now, something is going on in the wide world of twitter meetups. I am simply amazed how much has happened over the past 6 months with the boom of web 2.0. I adore it.. and am meeting such amazing people. The pictures were posted from the meetup in LA on the official flickr account.. once again it was such a fun time there and I can’t wait to do it again.
Here’s one of my faves of me with the most awesome Dan from the photobooth setup they had there:

We were feeling a bit silly.. perhaps it was all the drinks or at the open bar or all those scrumptious tasties there.  The switching glasses, was all Dan’s idea.. and I think the shot turned out rad because of it.  Even if I look like a school marm and he looks like the cool hey man.  And all of the shots they took look that fun too.  Seriously go check out that set and be envious you weren’t there (and come on out next time!)

Last night I was off my night job. I have a friend from San Diego who was going to be here on business that I was supposed to meet up with. He was running late, and unfortunately I wasn’t able to catch him. I did, however, get to go on a random adventure with a couple of “new” friends.. the guys from Twitter Travels.

They were extremely hospitable and drove 50 minutes out to see me to have drinks. Given that I really haven’t been out and about as much as I’d like to in LA.. and not having a car, I didn’t know where to go.  I was talking to another friend, whom I’d met through a friend of a friend (at the tweetup) and he told me about a couple of bars around him that would be open.

It was a night of random, and the guys didn’t care.  We drove up and met up at an Irish pub in culver city.  The bar had wall to wall people.  On a Tuesday night and at 11, we were a bit surprised, but not entirely, or I wasn’t.  It’s LA anyway. Steve didn’t expect that… as he’d gone there on a weekend and never seen it that packed before. I guess they have really good food there.  To be honest, I would have loved to have stayed anyway.  But we made a group decision based on the lack of seating and the lines around the bar to go somewhere else.

Mica called.  He was just heading out to LA then.. it was about 11pm or so.  We made plans to see eachother a different night this week.. tonight is actually my night off for my stocking job, but I’m thinking about going in for some extra hours.  I need all the money I can right now.

We went to this other bar not far from there.  It wasn’t empty but it wasn’t packed either.  The guys wanted beer, so they ordered a pitcher of Bud Light.  They didn’t have the few beers I actually drink on tap, so I went to order some well drinks.  It was a good night to go apparently because they were only $2.

The guys nursed their glasses (not mugs.. another reason I didn’t touch the beer) and I just got some vodka cranberries.  People that don’t know me are always surprised when they see how well I hold my lichor… well unless its that one time every 6 months where that fiasco happens… but um, 2 a year… I’m allowed I think.

It was more relaxed.  I got some actual time to sit around and talk to them.  I honestly wanted to know more about their stories… to turn the table around and interview them a bit.  I still want to know more.  I’m an information junkie.

There will be more times like this I’m sure… I’m just glad that I didn’t come home to more post its on my door… but that’s a different story (yes unfortunately there’s more on that… )  Summation?  I started a folder for pictures from events and outtings with twitter folk.  I wish my camera was more compact but I promise to whip it out more often.  Oh yeah baby.. I’m packing zee magnum.. camera that is. Hehe