when i got back from chicago the xbi had destroyed my apartment

10320523_10152713911683057_3237534527771076360_nthe internet doesnt work, my tv doesnt work

they took the wires out of my house and patched up the holes but im pretty sure they just reinstalled new bugs and video cameras.

it was a little stressy but fortunately i had an appointment to meet with this years editors of the UCSB Daily Nexus

so i drove up to Isla Vista and i thought, why don’t i do this more often? it’s so close. and pretty.

we talked for an hour. i was hyper. i always get charged up when im around them.

the Nexus is only a weekly now, which makes me sad, but maybe they will focus more on digital and online more

which are the jobs they will get when they get out of college, lets be honest. the first ones at least.

walked around the campus. was inspired. a little depressed.

then drove home. and began cleaning up the xbi mess.

thinking about going minimalist with my place. started throwing things out.

i know they want me to move out but i like to do the opposite of what they want.

last night amber was sweet and spent the night even though i live in a disaster area.

we had no tv so we just talked to each other.

like the indians did back in the day.

things ive seen on this trip to the airport


a couple with a small carryon luggage bag. dude opened it up and repacked it while his wife repeatedly said Really?

super pretty woman who has not stopped applying makeup. whoops now she is using the lint roller all over her jacket that has no lint. shes spending extra time on the front.

a guy whose legs are so toned you can see every single vein. but because hes black it doesnt look terrible, just weird. it makes you think being slightly out of shape is probably a blessing.

an old man with a Green Bay Packers tshirt on. it says Shareholder on it. since this is Bears country it makes me want to knock the coffee out of his hand while saying Ditka.

no one here looks like theyre from LA.

quite a few people are coughing.

everyones eating mcdonalds.

i have a middle seat. my life is over.

i hope we end up on the Lost island.

hi early morning northwest suburbs of life


it’s true that staycations are cheaper and stressfree, but we should stretch our wings a few times a year.

and for sure you should see your momma as often as you can.

chicago the last few days did its best to make itself known. a lot of things went wrong.

im typically cool under pressure but i was out of my comfort zone and very little went right.

but my mom and i were able to eat at my favorite chinese joint and i was lucky enough to sample a wide variety of local and foreign beers.

my poor mother must think im a drunk because everywhere we go either im drinking or looking for a drink. truth is i barely touch the stuff in LA, perhaps because i’m usually driving.

but my mom drives everywhere around here and won’t negotiate when it comes to that so i just drink up and enjoy the ride.

yesterday we did the old swap where i gave her my xbiphone and i took her phone.

it’s one way to keep the snoops off yr trail but unfortunately they put so much malarkey in there it’s tough to erase and restore, which is what i was doing all night.


only got a few hours of sleep because i had to get a 6am (!) limo from her house to the airport so i could catch my 9am flight.

sometimes i think my moms favorite thing to do is to wake up early to catch a plane. she was up before i was to collect all my crap and make sure i got up and showered in time.

shes the best of all.

limo guy was a little too anxious. clearly a new agent. i put in my earbuds and ignored him.

he drove wildly, tailgating, honking, cussing.

i took out one of the speakers in my ear and i said, tommy

he said, yes sir.

i said it’s freaking 6:30 in the morning. pretend theres an open bowl of water out here and if none of it spills you get an extra $20. also, slow the hell down.

he got the point.

the midwest was beautiful as we drove past cornfields and rivers as the sun rose and poor shmucks went to whereever they had to go on a saturday morning.

and even though i know money doesn’t really solve any problems, i schemed ways i could get a few extra bucks so i could take my mom

and maybe my niece or my nephew to a fun spot in the next year or two.

italy, vegas, sweden.

somewhere no one has to wake up til noon.

and somewhere where phones are not the center of our universe.

dude sets fire to ONE facility and causes a shut down of a super busy airport


and thus cancels a flight of a former xbi agent?

said agent finds said dude

who is later discovered with “self inflicted” wounds.

“stop stabbing yourself, stabby,” he keeps mumbling to himself as he is wheeled to the ambulance.

two things: why is it that our electrical grid is so sensitive that entire states can be wiped out due to human error?

and how come the second busiest airport in america can be crippled because of one stinking fire?

all these electrical engineers making all this money and no one knows about Redundancy?

if the US was ever attacked we’d be doomed.

if I was Obama, i’d fund one less air craft carrier and reinvest that money into the infrastructure of the good ole USA.

do you know life is weird?

lucydo you know charles shultz tried to warn us via Peanuts?

all those kids who were lo-key and monotone so much

intellectual but had already given up by 8 years old.

and the biggest lesson was Lucy’s going to try to f you over whenever she can.

shes not gonna let you kick that ball, charlie brown.

try all you want, but you’ll never be cooler than your dog.

it all became true.

tonight my mom and i ate sushi, drank sake, and tried to figure out what the plan is gonna be like for christmas.

shes the hardest working person in showbiz and even in a job that doesnt respect her she gives 100%

shes nervous they wont let her take christmas week off because it’s so busy there at that time.

we walked around the mall that was built when i was in high school.

it’s so run down inside and out that she doesnt even notice the dumpsters in the parking lot.

this mall was the most sparkling hopeful place in all of the suburbs a few decades ago and now half of the stores inside are empty and the other half are halfassed stores that arent even trying.

we walked into a sports shop to browse jerseys and hats and there were three old men from india behind the counter

one guy couldnt stop coughing and the other two just looked at each other.

i swear i saw a tumbleweed roll by.

only stores with any business? the cinnabon and the one black barber shop on one side of the mall, and the black beauty parlor on the other side of the mall.

usually when i see an empty space my mind can think of some way creatively to fill it

but this place, oh man, i got nothin.

turn the whole place into the midwest’s largest strip club?

an orphanage? for like every orphan in chicago?

only thing i could think of was to film a zombie movie in there cuz thats how it felt.


sometimes you get the bull, sometimes you get the horns

hospitaland sometimes your mom has to come to the xbi hospital hidden beneath the abandoned Dominick’s

and shes not happy.

“i thought you quit the xbi. i thought these were all lies on your blog. this is not right. THIS IS NOT RIGHT!”

and sometimes the nurse has to assure her that everythings gonna be ok, that her son was needed, which is why he flew out to chicago when he did, why he missed the sunset strip music festival

starring one of his favorite bands in the world, janes addiction.

because there was work to do in chicago. sorta dangerous work. but work he was super great at.


and the heartbroken nurses try not to cry while the doctors nervously smile.

he’s an amazing agent, your son, the polish man in the white coat assures her. he chuckles like the black doctor in the simpsons. he tells her, “somehow he always knows what’s going to happen next.”

“and whats going to happen next, mom, is we’re going to go to red lobster,” i told her as i woke up

pulled the cords off my hairy chest

and retrieved my bloody hawaiian shirt.

some jackhole gave me a white sox jersey

probably to see if i had all my senses about me

and i whipped it back at him

and they gave me a plain blue tshirt in exchange for my bloody rags

and my mom drove me quietly to the red lobster on army trail road and we ate and drank water and she steamed trying to hold back her anger

she gritted her teeth and said, your niece and nephew dont want to go to your funeral.

i said, momma, even deaths not invited to that bash.

Good riddance, LA Register

la registerI’ve seen some of my journalist friends “sad” to hear that the terrible Los Angeles Register has stopped publishing its newspapers that nobody wanted and nobody asked for. I assume they’re “sad” because as journalists they would like more than just a few solvent newspapers to work for. But the truth is the LA Register was a horrible idea for journalism and a ridiculous business proposition.

Print journalism in 2014 is not a growth opportunity, especially for a new product. It’s like planting a seed in sand. But what’s worse: a RIGHT WING newspaper in LA in 2014 is even more foolish. Of all of the subsets of potential customers one could reach out to, that sliver of LA county is who you want to charge $1.75 a day to read your broadsheet?

How about this: how about find out what portion of LA is truly underserved by the Los Angeles Times and reach out to them. It sure as shit aint Santa Monica, Brentwood, Pacific Palisades, Westwood, DTLA and Pasadena: the same old beaten paths the LA Register attempted to cover.

I’ll give you a hint: the areas that are underserved and are not currently subscribing to the biggest paper west of the Mississip are probably brownskinned, democrats and/or bilingual. If your agenda is to push your political agenda north from Orange County via an OMG newspaper, you’re doomed and deserve your money to be taken away. If, however your agenda is to compete by providing news that the old DTLA paper doesn’t specialize in, your political agenda will probably have to take a back seat as you cover South LA, Inglewood, Highland Park, West Adams, East LA and all the other areas where working-class people live but who often don’t see their stories told in the media.

There are more than enough avenues in print and online to beat the GOP drum both locally and nationally. But strangely there are very few that tell the story of the majority of Los Angelenos, you know, those about women and “minorities”. If Mr. Kushner was truly interested in telling that story, in a bold way, his newspaper would still be in business.

heres what people should probably say about me at my funeral

old style

1. for some reason he loved, as in LOVED, the worlds most mediocre beer, a beer that, now that the Russians own it, they will sip and say: this is why we hate America.

2. he was basically emotional-less no matter what super high highs befell him or terrible tragedies. but if the Chicago Bears were about to play or were playing or just won or lost he will even curse out his dear dear mother. it was best to pretty much stay far away from him on game days.

3. he could only identify 2-3 bears each season.

4. as religious as he was, churches bothered him and felt the most holy place on Earth was the bleachers of Wrigley Field.

5. super underachiever. maybe the best underachiever of all.

6. could never sleep in Illinois.

7. hated dreams. they irritated him. biggest waste of energy and movie-making.

8. loved his high school chums, had a very healthy, interesting experience there, and yet never ever ever went to a reunion and probably never ever will.

9. hyper critical of salespeople and couldnt understand why so few of them ever asked the customer why they wanted what they say they wanted and/or what they loved and hated about the thing they are replacing. QUALIFY THE CUSTOMER PPL!

10. even though he never really liked visiting his hometown, was always impressed at how tall the trees grew there and how beautiful it all ended up looking decades later.

for my moms birthday we took her to a burger place at the mall


i was all ma, why here? she said, it was Kylas choice. i was all wha? she said, dont ask.

anyways kyla has braces now and her gift to my mom was her favorite Glade Plug-ins.

we ate three different versions of french fries and then assorted burgers and booze. it was nice.


nephew tyler was in great spirits because he had an assist during his soccer game

and also because i wasnt telling him how they made the chicken tenders he was eating

he also drank milk and played under the table and generally enjoyed himself like a kid


Babe was probably the happiest. she ate her food, a little of tylers

then when no one was looking she got out of her chair and grabbed some food off the table behind us.

THAT was probably the funniest thing i’d ever seen.

the dude was all, oh dont worry we’ve got kids too, it happens.


afterwards i went to my favorite store in the world and bought a Cubs hat


because if this rain stops, tomorrow we’re going to Wrigley Field,

finest ball park on earth.

and i hear they’ve been waiting for me.