Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Birthdays


It's 1:43 AM on the morning of my birthday. I type alone at my laptop in my quiet Canoga Park apartment, enjoying the temperate aftermath of an uncomfortably sweltering day, head spinning from good conversation, healthy contemplation, and orgasmically delicious hot chocolate.

Perhaps it's the new-friend-factor, or the birthday-making-you-see-things-bigger filter, or the fact that my delicate constitution reacts to chocolate in the same way other people might react to some ecstatic mind-altering drug. Whatever the case, I feel the interconnectedness of things. The way we interweave and overlap. My world getting cozier and more expansive all at once.

Just a little before 10:30 p.m., I met up with my new friend Mike Kramer at the Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf in Westwood. We met at a barbecue last weekend, and he is easily one of the most fascinating, delightful, inquisitive, affirmative, lovely people I know. He also happens to be one of the writers on Life Unexpected. At this very moment, he's probably packing for his early flight to Vancouver where he'll be spending the week on the set of the show (hanging out with the likes of Emma Caulfield, which I must say makes my inner-fan girl squeal!). We talked about everything from favorite movies, to the highs and lows of creative careers, to those little moments in life that end up wiggling their way into your scripts, which in turn wiggle their way into other people’s lives.

"So I was writing on this show, Rugrats..." one of his stories began. We were standing next to his car, which was parked in front of a hopping hookah bar on Broxton. My face lit up. "I totally grew up on Rugrats!" The theme song jingles in my head as I recall the moment. He told me how one of the episodes was based on a prank he and his brother pulled on his dad when they were kids. I don't remember seeing that particular episode, but was tickled by the knowledge that his childhood experience had poured into an artistic landscape that had infused my childhood experience. We are like spiders throwing out our threads, small creatures weaving wide webs.

I ‘d spent the earlier part of the day bumbling about; eight-legged arachnid climbing up the waterspout. A run out to the craft store for T-shirt painting material; a phone call to arrange a music session; a thread here, a thread there. Here I am in my own little world, freaking out about my fan piece, which at this point is nothing more than an abstract idea. The end product feels a million miles away. My fans-to-be are still figments of my imagination. And James Marsters himself has no idea I even exist.

But somewhere he is out there, sleeping or awake, soon to celebrate a birthday of his own. We share an astrological sign, and that's probably the tip of the iceberg. Innumerable invisible commonalities underscore our existences and have the power to connect us, if only we cast our threads. Bleary-eyed, sleep deprived, and myopic from staring too long and hard at vampire love song lyrics, I cannot clearly see the web. But slowly and surely, I weave.

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