Monday, August 31, 2009

capitol skyline pool party

i caught the next to last weekend of the spike'd pool party at the crapitol skyline pool...i have to admit the place has a miami ambiance that's quite lovely. michael jackson could be heard blaring all the way from the navy yard metro station.
my bro found something which might have been a tendon in his cheeseburger (included with entrance. good brunchin').
the speedos were plenty, the old ladies wrinkled into raisins were impressibly tan, drinks amazingly cheap and the pool unexpectedly deep!
for reals, it says 5 1/2 feet. i slipped in, with my sunglasses on trying to be classy and not to get my hair all wet and i quickly fell into the murky depths, got kicked by a guy on a dragon raft and clawed some girl's thigh when i thought i was going to drown. i wonder if they ever find anyone being sucked into the filter at the bottom of this endless abyss.
oh and then there's this article in the citypaper..couldn't they publish this in the beginning of summer? makes you wonder why there wasn't much of a line for the bathrooms...
all in all a good time, not that i would go every weekend or anything. though i'll probably bring a few baby ruths to toss in, just for fun.

Friday, August 28, 2009

i only need one reason to move to europe

and here it is! a wonderful thoughtful comment by the edumacated american who i don't think is part of a lunatic fringe, sadly these people are sadly the majority. what is it about our country that fosters such selfish, competitive, i'm better than you mentality?

"so you wonder why the most successful country in the world doesn't offer health care to all. Because America was doing it differently, we used to have to go to work everyday to earn an honest days pay for honest days work and we used to be able to afford to live. No we are giving away the farm and no one has to go to work or is motivated to go to work because the harder we work the more the government gives to social programs. Why should I work hard anymore there is no benefit to working hard. No I am going to sit back and let the government provide for me. I want to declare myself and Illegal immigrant from the great nation of Long Island, I want my welfare check, my insurance, my housing subsidies, my families education, and I want it all for sitting on my butt. Now you want to follow the rest of the world, but I thought we were the richest most successful country, why would we want to copy other countries that are obviously not as successful if we are the most successful, if we are on top, why change what works. Just cause some dude who ran for president realized that lazy americans had more time to vote. Take away my ability to strive for more and better than the next guy and I will lay down with the rest of the welfare recipients."

commenter celectric, on

Monday, August 24, 2009

cultural sunday

last sunday, after drinking some champers and eating weenie tots in kalorama park i went to see this.
cool huge reflective ants, trippy photo-realism, some multi-media, silk creations and other stuff, like my friend who took me up to the rooftop.
the meridian center is cool, random, i can't believe i've never been before. wicked little patio and grand ornate inside, i'm a little surprised the place was so empty. then again, they may have wandered in circles like me looking for the entrance in the vortex of 17th and meridian.
anyway, one of the chinese paintings has some sort of predator creature in it, which was a fine interlude to see district 9. low budget, really? with its nano-second human bodies exploding into nothingness and a splatter of blood on the camera lens, a banal statement on segragation and tentacled creatures with hearts of gold. that's real culture for ya.

Monday, August 3, 2009


i rode a 13 hour nightbus from San Cristobal to Merida. i felt surprisingly well rested, and show up to my friend's bonnie's house. the first thing she says is "you look like shit!" gracias.
i enter their fabulously cool (did i mention it's f-ing HOT in Mierda?), 50 foot ceiling casa which has an open kitchen in a patio with a swimming fountain thing. a lion head spits lukewarm water into a shallow pool. classy!
bonnie's roommate and i head to this suburban mall to meet bonnie and another friend after their spanish class. this is a mall with a sears, a walmart, movie theater. it's very much like an american mall but all the stores have hilariously weird names like: Bizarro is the fancy jewelry store, Smoogus is the smoothie joint, LizManelli for old lady clothes, Suburbia is the hip urban outfitters like thing. we go to the food court and i get a really good taco al pastor. with pineapple. bonnie practices her new spanish at the chinese place. very odd.
we hop in the rental car and head to Celestun, which has a huge flamingo population. 4 gringas in a nissan. we stop for gas, which begins our day of inappropriate phrases like "wow, it feels just like home, a mexican guy is cleaning the windshield." or, bonnie's thoughtful description of the interesting landscape dotted with hennequin "that's the plant they use to make shit with." the radio blasts Bon Jovi. we notice a lot of really young kids behind the wheel of cars, but it's just that all mayans look like they're 12 years old, but they're actually 40. 
we arrive in celestun and find a boat guy to take us to see the flamingos. he promises 5 stops and a very long tour, just the four of us. special. we all get in the boat which has cool swivelly seats, like airport chairs attached to a series of boards so we can spin around and face eachother . all jorge can do besides drive the boat is is stare at bonnie's bouncing bosom, in unison with the waves. he's in a trance. 
stop 1: the petrified forest, which jorge tells us is 60 years old. um, ok. we get attacked by mosquitos and sink into some 3 feet deep mud up to our waists and cry out "atreyu!" and decide to move on to stop 2.
here we see our flamingos. wow, they are really ugly! and sortof pink. turns out flamingos are pink in zoos because they feed them a special diet or something. they twist their heads in ways that make us uncomfortable. like, ow. 
next we go to a sinkhole in the middle of some mangroves, which we get to via a very rickety boardwalk. the water is blue green, dotted with colorful fish. verrry beautiful. jorge tells us the water is just a little fresca and we jump in. it's fantastic, refreshing. this is the first time i've felt comfortable, temperature wise in yucatan. jorge is staring at us 4 chicks in bikinis like he's having a vision of the virgin mary or something. i tell him to stop being a wuss and jump in, at least i think that's what i told him in spanish..he dives in and proceeds to pinch each of our asses. like ooh! that was my ass! ooh! mine too! and mine! um, kinda awkward jorge. 
we take some silly pictures and head to the next stop, a creepy mangrove tunnel, then some more flamingos, flamingos and it's now 2 1/2 hours later, the sun is setting, we are flying along the coast at full speed, wind in our knotted hair, content with our tour and jorge says "la marea esta muy baja." it sure is jorge, thumbs up! and he's all, no, really, the tide is super low. you betcha jorge! and that's when i notice we've run aground, about a mile from shore, we're on this huge sandbar with patches of seagrass. ok, it's now a three hour tour... 
"all the fatties out of the boat!" thankfully, the boat floats at this point, but let's just say that we spent the next hour empuje-ing este pinche barca. we are stepping in goo, crushing crabs and feeling dead fish with our toes. jorge holds up a sea cucumber to the norwegian girl "hola guapaaa" and makes it squirt rather pornographically, she blushes. 
we finally free ourselves into the open sea and make it back to the beach in time for a chelada (beer-garita) at sunset. we give jorge a tip despite his creepiness, and enjoy a nighttime swim in the bright hot water. muy excellente my first day in yucatan.    

Sunday, August 2, 2009

gracias, san juan chamula

so i was in San Cristobal de las Casas for two days, not doing much besides freezing my butt off (in July, seriously!) and sitting in a hammock all day drinking cervesa. my friend told me that i should really go see something, like a Mayan village or whatnot. ok fine.
so i go over by the crazy food market and find a collectivo (minivan bus thing) to take me to San Juan Chamula. I noticed that this lady was selling bags and bags and bags of pine needles? huh?
so the collectivo doesn't leave until there are at least 12 people in his 6 passenger van, of course. so i squeeeeeze in next to this guy with a dorky sombrero and my pelvis is literally stuck between the door and his thigh. turns out he's a swiss opera composer, and we start chatting and i meet the rest of his friends, this bus is actually full of frenchies. 
we get to san juan chamula and it's basically a giant market. the mayans are quite serious about their vending. i eyed some of those big ears of corn that they bbq and slather in mayonnaise (yum), some textiles and a number of things which i told myself not to buy, but bought anyway.
the center of town is all about the church, naturally, and it doesn't look too fancy but we decide to go in. 15 pesos for gringos, and you have to pay over there, at the tourist office. ok fine. i would have given up except swiss guy decided to offer us all a round 'o church visits. 
so we enter and i was not all prepared for the total weirdness inside. first of all, the entire floor is covered in pine needles, ah, the pine needles, and amidst all of this dry, flammable vegetation: a bajillion candles. the place was smoky, eerie. 
along the side walls all these small statues of saints with creepy looks on their faces, and plastic mirrors around their necks, the kind you put in your locker and plaster with stickers of zach ephron.
at the front of the church where normally you would see jesus on his cross in all his glory, well he was there but kind of tossed to the side, in a box leaning against the wall with some other saints of lower importance. the real deal was on this san juan baptista guy with his awesome hat.
so all around the church you had the mayans sitting on the ground and chanting loudly in their dialect, lighting candles and giving offerings. eggs, cans of coca cola, tang, and live chickens. yes, live chickens. most of the chickens were chillin', like, wow, i'm being lovingly held by my mamasita, but i think once they got a glimpse of their cousins in a pool of bloody newspaper, that's when they would try to get loose. and so every once in a while, the chanting was interrupted by a ba-GAWK! totally worth the 15 pesos. 
back outside i was hounded by some girls who literally robbed me of my earrings. they kept asking me for pesos, pesos! or your earrings? ok here you- woahhey! and in a second, my ears were naked. they would have taken my necklace if they could have figured out the clasp. they demanded more. how about a thank you? they tried to force me to buy their bracelets by tying them onto my wrists with double and triple knots...but i have more slender hands than they thought, and off they came. they felt cheated. i gave you my earrings, what else do you want? 
 a little boy kept grabbing my arm so fine, i bought him a horchata and he wandered away, gloomily sipping his free drink and i was all, pardoneme but that is a tasty and nutritious rice-based beverage there, how about a little gracias? 
i quickly got the idea that we weren't welcome in this town if we weren't dispensing pesos, and so we hopped back in our collectivo, all collectively a little depressed. 
gracias san juan chamula. 

Saturday, August 1, 2009

hey you! over here! no, over here!

so "orale" pronounced ora-lay is spanish for "hey you!" which sounds a lot like my name. i'm just not used to hearing it so much, maybe in france, but here my head nearly spins off its axis every time i wander through a market and hear orale! orale! in every direction. the taxi drivers say it all the time too, in their cellphones and i'm the idiot in the backseat asking are you talking to me? allo?