Issue #148 – “Spring Training” – March 30th, 2009

-Since the temperature varies so little in Los Angeles, sometimes I forget that seasons even exist.  When one of my buddies on the East Coast complains about being bombarded with snow, I have to look at a calendar and remind myself that just because it’s 75 degrees and sunny in LA, doesn’t mean it’s not still winter.  I also have to remind myself not to call my friend and be a dick by rubbing it in.  Spring, however, is a different story, because it’s a season noted as much for its weather as for its significance as a time of renewal.  Spring is when we begin training in earnest for the rest of the year.  The skirts get shorter, the days get longer, and winter is a distant memory to all except those who I remind about it on a weekly basis until December.

-After essentially hibernating for the past few months due to a minor knee injury and a major bout of laziness, I’ve finally begun working out regularly again.  Since my gym is in my apartment building, it’s been a while since I hit the treadmill and then got directly in my car, as I did the other day to run some quick errands.  Driving around while marinating in my own sweat was a good dose of humility.  The world would be a much better place if everyone were occasionally reminded of how much they fucking stink.

-Spring marks the end of flu season, which must be a welcome respite for actors who can’t really take sick days in the middle of filming.  Have you ever watched a sitcom and just been able to tell by their unusually nasal voice that one of the actors is deathly ill?  Sometimes they work it into the storyline, and other times they just assume viewers won’t notice that one of the characters sounds like he’s underwater.

-In Hollywood, pilot season is underway, meaning new shows that will air once in the fall before being unceremoniously canceled are now being filmed.  Soon, my managers and agents will send me out on meetings to start developing next year’s pilots.  My representatives provide me with all the salient information: who I’m meeting, where, and – if I’m meeting with a chick – the size of her tits.  I’m not kidding.  I’ve gone to meetings, looked at my notes, and realized I have no idea what project I’m talking about, but have been fully briefed on every cup size in the room.

-We’ve also officially entered wedding season.  I’m actually in New York right now, where I just witnessed Triplet #1’s marriage to another triplet.  It was like walking down the aisle into the Twilight Zone.  But being back in New York has reminded me just how little we walk in Los Angeles.  In 2007, me and my girlfriend at the time took our first trip together to New York.  Upon arrival, I immediately noticed that, well, she walked kinda funny.  She just had a very peculiar gait that I couldn’t believe I had never picked up on.  In other words, I dated a girl in LA for six months and we drove so much that I never once saw her walk more than five feet.

-Wedding season continues as I leave tonight for Israel to attend the nuptials of my high school buddy Gadi in Tel Aviv.  Planning the trip has been a bitch because every time Gadi Skypes me, the number comes up as “unknown” on my cell phone.  It’s bad enough he keeps forgetting to email me before he calls so that I don’t screen him.  But what’s worse is that in every voicemail he says, “Hey, Karo.  Guess I figured out the time difference wrong and called you at 4am.”  No, fucker!  It’s the middle of the day here!  I didn’t pick up because I just assumed you were a wrong number, a telemarketer, or my alma mater.

-Last but not least, spring is also tax season.  It’s a time to take stock both of one’s finances and station in life.  I felt very mature when I diligently organized and annotated all of my tax documents and mailed them to my accountant for review.  Less so when I put a Ziggy return address label on the envelope.

-As always, here are some random things I’ve been ruminating about lately…

-You know you look non-threatening when the little old lady at the card access-only, after-hours ATM actually holds the door open for you to go in with her.

-Paper or plastic?  Well, that depends.  I’ll take whatever will end this conversation fastest and with the least amount of eye rolling.

-I wish the entire magazine consisted of those short blurbs, interesting quotes, and cool graphs that make up the first twenty pages.

-The only time I ever log out of a web site is when I’m checking something on a buddy’s computer and know that if I don’t, he’ll fuck with my shit.  In all other instances, just closing my browser and forgetting I was ever logged in to begin with seems more than sufficient.

-The voice of my car’s navigation system really is a glass-half-full kind of gal.  Only seven minutes until my estimated time of arrival?  Um, have you ever driven in LA traffic, lady?

-The least effective way of dealing with someone who doesn’t know who you are is shouting, “Do you know who the fuck I am?”

-One of my friends gets watched like a hawk at work, so when we’re on the phone and she sees her supervisor coming, she’s finesses the word “Christmas” into the conversation as a signal that she can no longer speak freely.  I forget that this is the code word every single time and say, “Christmas?  What the fuck are you talking about?”  She doesn’t call me much anymore.

-And, finally, for those who aren’t in the know, Bay to Breakers is a twelve-kilometer footrace that takes place every May in San Francisco.  Although I haven’t participated since 2007 and probably won’t be able to make it this year, it’s one of my favorite rites of spring.  The race begins at 8am and, after the “serious” runners have left the starting line, the real fun commences as thousands of people walk along the route and get seriously fucked up.  My friends roll a pong table through the streets and play flip cup at every intersection.  Other people build tiki bars on floats, dress up in costume, and urinate everywhere.  It’s essentially a daylong Mardi Gras parade.  This year, the city tried to ban alcohol, which, predictably, resulted in virulent protests.  Instead of trying to outlaw the drinking, I think organizers should outlaw the running.  Even though it’s the season to start hitting the gym again, I doubt many people will be ready for a 12K.  But getting annihilated from a keg in a shopping cart?  That’s an all-weather activity.  Fuck me.