Well, Venice did not go well. I've been keeping in touch with people all day so I'm just going to post an excerpt from what I've been sending to
realtime friends rather than reinventing it completely for ATS.
Retreat to Berdoo; Slow start in LA; No microphones; Silence and words I don't understand.
reply to post by gwynnhwyfar
This AM I struck my camp as rain began, and crept down the mountain in heavy clouds with bad headlights and bad wipers.
I'm holing up in Berdoo again, going back to LA Sun-Mon-Tues for open mics. One nights hotel fee will be less expensive than 3 days camping, driving,
and parking. And I can charge my computer and camera to get ready. And I'm recovering from the cold of LA.
I took too long getting my campsite and missed open mics Tues.
Wed. I paid to camp, paid to drive down the mountain, paid to park in Venice beach, walked around, and didn't find anything to do but buy stuff or
look at stuff you want to buy! Nobody talked to me but barkers and pitchmen. It depressed me and made me doubt the point of this trip.
I approached two people- one was too crazy to understand- he thought he knew me from years back and couldn't get over where I had been- the other
ended up being too British too understand- she was seriously Cockney.
All of my hygiene, car repair, electrical, and internet needs met in a 2 mile stretch of Foothill Boulevard saved the day, and reaffirmed my
dependence on Corporate America. I was very loney in my camp Wednesday, and for a few hours I was completely alone in the campground, until one other
I decided to spend Thurs. alone on the mountain anyway- I didn't want to - I climbed boulders, set up my video camera in various places so I can pick
out still shots from my camp, got pretty good at controlling a campfire, and wrote about a page of banter full of Dangerfield style rapid fire
self-directed cheap shots with more cogent segues into larger issues, but I never got around to playing out the segues and actually developing a full
routine of quick shallow laughs spacing out pithy observations... the raw thoughts are there, just not crystalized yet. Same old problem
The best is yet to come though... LA was never the point. I wouldn't have had to quit my job to go to LA... and why the hell would anyone want to?
But San Francisco and Eureka/Arcata...
Thanks, I'm glad you're enjoying the story so far. I hope to write an organized travelogue for this, as a sort of next logical step from On the
Road/Dharma Bums to Fear and Loathing to... whatever i end up calling this. Of course I don't expect to be remembered on that level, I just want to
be part of expressing this generation's evolution of that always restless and dissatisfied American spirit which seems to find its voice with deeply
The thing with the golf scene- which really for me represents the service economy, real estate/banking/finance/insurance, social class, etc... is
likely to be a big part of this story- I was born into it but my parents went bankrupt when I was 4. I had all kinds of ups and downs, and I won't
get long winded about that part, but it changed my views and values a lot, even though certain instincts remain. And I can work in it and do my best
for them, even with very mixed feelings about it, because I do a lot of mental tai chi and I'm very flexible and balanced when I have to contort
myself to fit into and/or through reality... mostly I remind myself that they almost destroyed themselves once in 2008 already, and we can't protect
them forever, so I'm appropriate to my time, but not standing in the way of what will inevitably happen.
But I'm taking a fairly big gamble on getting away from that and into something more in line with who I am, and yet finding myself most at ease and
doing most of my business in those kinds of cities/areas. I've been way out of it, but I didn't have any choice and I was with familiar people
then... trying to get out of it alone by choice is strange. And in the midst of it I meet this well off fellow, telling me his tale of woe and
adventure on the edge, and I really like him and he really reminds me of me in some ways... even while some of the things he says make the hairs on
the back of my neck stand up.
I've always liked "Save the Doomed" as a kind of mantra for my idealism, for my personal struggles, and as a copout when my idealism drags me into
depression. But now if I am indeed among the doomed, that mantra implies an even stranger rally cry, "Save the Rich", if only as a possible
alternate application of the answers I seek for myself and those who I sympathize with... And maybe so, maybe the system really is alive at this point
and even the elite are at its mercy, and if so there's a great macrocosm to compare my own experiences to.