I love Fresh Air now as much as I loved this crashing, smashing QuickSilver Messenger Service searing San Francisco/Latinesque sound on a summer day in 1970 Oregon. August 2019, driving along Mulholland, QSMS punches through my jeep speakers like a long lost friend. Another summer and the perfect song for weaving along Mulholland through California sunshine.
Back in the day FM radio was king so heart-stirring/psychedelic jam/acid rock that came out of the Bay Area is part of the soundtrack of my life. That sound. Dino Valenti's ragged-edged vocal. Those quivering guitar strings, those guitar breaks, pounding percussion, pure power piano keys, still raw, still slicing straight through. Timeless.
Take a breath of FRESH AIR: https://tinyurl.com/y33y38mh
March. Back in the day, in my NYC day, by March I was ready to slit my wrists if I had to put on a down jacket again, grab the gloves, sick of those boots, where's the scarf, do I need a hat, etc. etc. etc. My skin
felt pastey-splotchy-white. Gone was my summery blondish-ness. Most days were dark early days, low light, damp cement, jagged sidewalk cracks even darker, buildings stood in daylight shadows. Winter sucked up energy leaving my spirits low and edgy. In SoCal winter doesn't have the same chilling grip. March then and March now are different.
March on the East Coast left me with memories. Memories of longing for the good life that models led.
Tan in winter and so much more.
Bergdorf Goodman. As I flipped through racks of pricey clothing, rounded rounders of designer temptations, a tall, slender body dusted in something Calvin Klein gold & lacey glided by. Barefoot,
guided by a Bergdorf staff person. My pale self, swaddled in a down jacket, couldn't help but gaze at
this being from a parallel world searching for somethings-lovely. Oh to be a Cindy Crawford ...
Wynn Handman's class. A room full of earnest, talented acting students, winter-white. And one
delicately tanned model, Denise Flamino. No supermodel bronzed by shoots in the Carribbean, she
spent time sunning at her sister's place in California. Sounded good to me.
Nancy Donohue. There she was, walking between two other models. Coming down the street,
my street, 21st. Who didn't know who Nancy was? I envied her easy laugh and the soft glow she
sported. I imagined having her life - I'd be smiling too.
Grape hyacinths. Years and years have passed and now in March I have oranges in the backyard,
and grape hyacinths in the front. From the moment I saw the tiny spires of purple flowerettes, decades
ago, I was a fan. Elegant, less common than daffodils and iris. And there was Renata in Long Beach.
The German neighbor of old friend Jane Gill who also had a high regard for grape hyacinths. Renata
planted them in a long strip along the property line. Tiny, bell-shaped jewels delicately decorating the driveway's edge. And now I have my own circle of purple grape-like clusters breaking through earth.
And a tan is no longer what I long for, but I can get it if I want:-)
Beautiful news this week, with a new law backed by the City Council, Los Angeles will become the biggest city in the United States to ban the sale of animal fur. According to the Los Angeles Times:
"The new ordinance, which will go into effect in 2021, makes it illegal to sell, manufacture or trade furs or fur clothing and accessories such as coats, handbags and key chains in L.A. city limits. The ban includes a number of exemptions: Used furs can still be sold at secondhand shops. People can still sell or trade the pelts of dead animals preserved through taxidermy. And the city will not prohibit fur produced from animals taken lawfully under a trapping license."
Doing the moral thing is always the right thing to do and yet this ban has been a long time coming. West Hollywood was declared a "Cruelty Free Zone For Animals" in 1989 when it banned cosmetic testing on animals and became the first U.S. city to go fur free in 2012. The Fur Free WeHo campaign worked. Since then San Francisco and Berkeley followed suit and went fur free. Hawaii has introduced a bill to ban fur sales statewide. And now Los Angeles.
JIMMIE. X-bait dog. Survivor.
Eyes wide shut.
Jimmie sees life is worth living now.
His world has opened up. His world is safe.
He sleeps the sleep of the safe.
After six months at the Delano shelter, a rescue said yes but wasn't ready to take him immediately. The plan was to get him out of the kennel, let him de-stress. He came to us in mid-November. Call us Foster Failures.
All his scars weren't on the outside; mangled ears, marks covering the back of his neck and part of his front legs. Scars can run deep inside. He would not sleep in the house on his first night. Seeing a friend's dogs go in and out the next day convinced him it was ok to come in. Seeing pal Ripley jump up into the jeep showed him it was a good thing to go for a ride, he didn't have to be terrified, lay on the ground flat as a pancake. Seeing Ripley run to Jerry for hugs and pats meant no more cowering at the touch of a man, he wanted in on the attention too.
I shudder to think what he suffered through his first two or three dark years. No real world life experience is obvious. Everything is new. He is in a "normal" world for the first time. And he trusted me from the get go. Apprehensive, but wanting to trust. I worried that having just opened up, moving on to another 'temporary human' could damage his spirit. Would they give him the time and understanding he needed to become the dog he really was? Would they know how to be firm in his early days but weave a delicate touch throughout his everything? And so, I couldn't let him go.
2019 brought Jimmie the things all dogs crave: stability, routine and friends.
Playtime, naps, walks, wrestling. And repeat.
Loving and being loved.
Stay Jimmie, stay.
Woolsey Fire torches 96,314 acres, kills 2 people, destroys 435 homes from coast to canyons.
...and the animals? The staggering number of animals left injured, confused, wandering through a blackened moonscape. Alone at shelters or holding facilities, left waiting.
Waiting for medical, for care, for concern.
- Welcome an animal into your home. Give East & West Valley and West Los Angeles shelters "life-saving space" to house animals evacuated by the fires. http://www.laanimalservices.com/shelters/
- Current status of the California Wildlife Center is unknown, they evacuated Nov.9 with fires actively burning in their area. Even if CWC is unscathed by fire, a massive cleanup effort is ahead. You can contribute to their restoration here: https://30583.thankyou4caring.org/donate
More often than not, my memories are made up of little things. Small every day moments, slight shifts,
baby steps; rarely does monumental happen.
And so it was with Bruce Wayne. Fresh out of the shelter he could barely contain himself. Our 'Batman' was a live wire. So much energy and youth coursed through him he was compelled to launch like a rocket, jump for joy/curiosity/food, nip at his own toes and tail if a toy wasn't in chomping distance. He was a handful. A foster puppy who has moved on to adoption.
2018 has been a year of goodbyes. Bruce Wayne was here for three weeks, Reggie only one week, and they came, and went, on the heels of losing our beloved Knox. No matter the number of days, when you foster you open your home and your heart and a piece of your heart goes with your foster when s/he leaves. Even when the home that awaits is right, the goodbye is bittersweet.
Despite the parting tears to come, it's a joy to see a shelter dog feel safe, stretch their legs
and sprint whenever they want, learn to be touched, snooze outside in the sun, inhale
good food, to settle down, relax enough to toddle off to bed on their own.
Saving a life mixed up with moments of happy, is bigger than hurt.
Holy Heartbreak BRUCE WAYNE How We Will Miss You.
Wishing you everything that's good in your new life, in your new home.
Ballot measure Yes on Prop 2 (confinement of chickens, pigs & veal calves) changed my life. Much of what you see on My Story Tails comes from that change.
The People Have Spoken: YES! on Prop 2 - http://hsus.typepad.com/wayne/2008/11/prop2-victory.html