Coming Up for Breath

It’s like I’m coming up for air.

I’ve been going non-stop for a couple of weeks now, and I think right now at this moment I’m having my first second of silent, spare time. The fact that I’m filling it with writing an entry instead of finishing my book (I’m reading A Tree Grows In Brooklyn, a wonderful story that I wouldn’t have appreciated if I’d read it when I was younger), or practicing piano (A life-long goal of mine is to learn the piano. I am just now getting a chance to fulfill it. Yesterday I earned a gold star when I completed “Old Woman” without having to look at my hands), shows that I’m filled with guilt over neglecting this site this month. It’s just been pretty crazy around here.

The next few weeks are filled with meetings concerning my last screenplay, where I try and put a face to my writing so people think of me when they need a writer. It’s a job interview for a job that’s sort of in the future and will possibly never arrive, but it’s an important part of being a writer in Hollywood. Technically I’m a writer in Hollywood, but I’m still not a writer in Hollywood.

I’ve been recapping Boomtown and Gilmore Girls for anyone who cares. Oh, and I wrote a piece for my old stomping ground, the Statesman about the Austin Film Festival. They only kept it up for a week, so I guess you can’t read it anymore. Just know it was brilliant!

So Austin was five days of meetings and schmoozing and friends and family. Staying twenty minutes north in Round Rock was a bad idea, as I’d leave the hotel at eight in the morning and couldn’t go back until after two in the morning every day. My mom and sister (and her boyfriend) arrived Saturday night, and I was more than exhausted by the time I saw them. Somehow I crammed the week with drinks with just about every friend I have in town, dinner with my family, meeting people who’d read my script, meeting others who hadn’t, pep talks for aspiring writers, drinks with new friends, panels where I was Little Miss Big Mouth Know-It-All asking Inappropriate Questions, seeing my friend’s ultrasound at the end of her first trimester, dinner at some of my favorite Austin restaurants, two bad movies (The Truth About Charlie — Mr. Wahlberg, you sir are no Cary Grant, and Roger Dodger — the only movie that has ever given me motion sickness, and I love The Blair Witch Project), one good movie (Lost in La Mancha — it will make your heart sink as you’re laughing), one shout-out on late-night radio, many shots of a wine cooler called Diablo, a ride in the back of a truck through downtown Austin, and stops at most of my old haunts. Once again, no Whataburger. Why do I always run out of time before the Whataburger? Why!?!

I went to a film festival and now suddenly there are tons of films I’ve yet to see that I can’t wait to go to. In addition to the hours backlogged on TiVo, I’ve got about another week of constant viewing to catch up on everything. What was I saying about piano lessons? Right.

I hate a boring entry, I really do, especially with the added pressure of being newly crowned Number Four. But there’s nothing note-worthy to add here. It’s not too terribly interesting just writing about my work here, and there’s nothing worse than me gushing about my friends, a big pile of strangers to you, and how they do funny things.

I’m happy to see that Jennifer Weiner’s second novel is doing well. Every time I read an unfavorable review, though, I cringe. I’m starting to realize that soon it might be me up there. Oh, man. It’s all starting to get so serious.

Okay, so this entry is really more me just checking in, like when you call your parents just to say you got home okay, and then you end up chatting for fifteen minutes but you really just want to get off the phone and go wash your face.

Speaking of washing your face, I’m obsessed with this soap that Lin Chao, AB’s mother-in-law, won’t let me have. She says it’s not for American girl’s skin, but it’s the best soap in the world, and apparently you just can’t buy it in the states. I can’t read the damn website either. It’s this stuff and I can’t find it anywhere. I’ve asked anybody who knows anything about Japan to find it for me. Me and AB tore up San Francisco’s Chinatown and would have searched Japantown if it was open while we were in the Japantown Family Fun Center, or whatever it’s called where we sang Karaoke. My friend Matt is currently on this kind of USO tour and I was IM’ing him the other day right before he left for Korea and Japan. He’s like, “Isn’t it exciting?” and I’m all, “Great. Yes. Listen. I need you to get me this soap. I’m not kidding. I need the soap, Matt. Concentrate on what I’m saying.”

I’m obsessed. I’ll admit it. I love this soap. It’s really good soap. A friend of mine said, “You know it’s totally made of placenta or something, right?” I don’t care. Love the soap. Need the soap. AB uses this tiny silver sliver of it that’s left, waiting for Lin to bring her more soap from her secret secure cabinet of skin care goodness.

So poor Matt right now, I imagine he’s like, “Thank you, Tokyo! Good night! By the way, after you tip your waitress and bartender, I’m looking for the Queen Silver Soap by Arsoa!” It’s probably like asking for a bar of Almay around here, I know. But seriously, obsessed. Can’t stop dreaming about the soap. Love the soap. Need the soap. Get some for yourself and then send me a second bar. Seriously. I’m sure it’s a million zillion yen. I don’t care. I’ll get me some yen.

Yeah, I should go take a nap. Clearly I’m in no shape for a real entry.

People in Japan. Do you love me? Send me the soap. Come on. Do it! I’m shameless! I don’t care! It’s really good soap!

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