Let it rain, People!
Torrential downpours here in LA last week. Thank god. We could’ve used them a few weeks ago but they are here now. Maybe the entire city won’t burn, at least for a while longer.
I was becoming afraid to go on my hike because it just felt like I was walking through miles of kindling. The dryness here is relentless. Like it all could burst into flames any minute. Everything really starts to feel brittle and dead. Dryness. I’m afraid to touch my cats because of the static electricity. They’re old and I don’t want to kill them with my finger.
Then, the rain comes and as glorious as it is (I don’t care how hard it comes down), within minutes, everyone in a car in this city becomes a moron. Instant stupid. Wet dumb mobiles careening down the highways until one of them slams into another and stops traffic everywhere within a twenty-mile radius. It’s unreal. I’m sure it’s a common complaint and I am not without empathy. Obviously, I don’t want anyone to get hurt but for fucks sake it’s just rain. I’m not even sure what skill set is necessary to navigate rain. Either you have it or you don’t. I guess it can me learned but it seems hopeless and consistent. Angelenos can’t handle their machinery in water coming from the sky.
You would think it was snow. I mean, I get the roads are slippery, but some cars seem to just stop working in the middle of the highway here when it rains. Baffling. What kind of upkeep did you neglect in order for rain to stop your car cold? I am fortunate to have had to drive in most weathers. I’ve lived a lot of places. I have dug my cars out of snowbanks that were created by snowplows. Is that a conspiracy? If you are parked and there’s an overnight snowstorm, the plows come and just create a five-foot mound/wall of snow that locks your car in, maybe in hopes you’ll just say, ‘fuck it, I’ll wait until spring to go anywhere.’ Safer for everyone.
I have to remember that there are people in those cars. I was heading to a GLOW location about forty-five miles from where I live. It was six in the morning. Still dark. Ten minutes into my drive I hit standstill traffic. I admit, I didn’t reroute when my phone told me to. I’m a rebel. I wanted the autonomy to make my own decision rooted in baseless instinct. I sat there for an hour, not moving. Livid. Eventually I settle in. I was late. I had no idea what was up. Miles of traffic. Once it started moving and we were all funneled into one working lane and the causal event revealed itself to be a semi-truck that had jackknifed and tipped over and on its side and laying across four lanes, a literally unmovable wall across the highway. There is that feeling of horror, closure, relief and concern. Horror at the event. Closure that it was actually something stopping the flow. Relief it isn’t you. Concern for whoever was in that truck. It didn’t look like anyone was injured and that had to be a pretty shitty phone call to whoever was waiting for whatever was in that truck.
Today I talk to the actor Tim Blake Nelson. It was one of the most surprising talks I’ve had. You make assumptions about people based on their work, looks, way they sound, whatever and it’s always exciting to be totally wrong. Great talk. On Thursday I have a great comic conversation with Ted Alexandro. I’ve known him a long time and much of that time I thought he didn’t really like me. Turns out he’s just kind of a serious fella. Another great talk.