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An Oakland parade

January 1st, 2001

I Don't Know About
I went to the cafe this morning for breakfast and as I was getting a newspaper from the box on the corner I looked up and noticed the half hidden doorway of a two unit apartment building, one entrance at street level and the second up a set of stairs, and I thought, that would be a nice place to live. From the outside, at least.

No "for rent" sign and who knows what's on the other side of the door, but the feeling was right. I've clearly been just passing through this place I'm living in now because I've never bothered to unpack and the time has come to move along. Good. I've been fighting it and now that the time has come, if the time has come. (Who knows what my landlord's got on his mind? Maybe he's decided not to move back from the east coast and maybe he hasn't, but I'm betting I'm out of here by my birthday.) Either way, I see a spark of light. Let the landlord come tomorrow night. Sixty days notice is fine.

"It is New Year's Day" thought I perceptively as I was returning from the noon showing of Finding Forrester. Nice movie, by the way, but you've already decided on whether or not you are going to go see it. Anyway, the thought occurred as I was driving along that it was, indeed, New Year's Day, and that the Rose Bowl was underway even as I drove and that I, as a graduate of the University of Washington, should be watching it. There's a clause to that effect in the paperwork I was forced to sign as a student. It's playing now in the background and I'm thinking, now that this fourth day of my four day weekend seems to have gotten beyond the ennui stage, that I should go outside again and do more with it, go buy some lunch and say the hell with football. So I did.

If I'd been thinking, I would have simply asked the landlord if he was going to give me notice An Oakland parade after he suggested he come by and pick up the rent. You need to have the next month's check in hand when you give sixty days notice so your tenant can't deduct that rent from his deposit. Now, that's all right. If there are things that I've done here (that Wuss may have done here that I haven't quite properly cleaned up) that need to be taken out of my deposit, so be it, but if you plan (as a landlord) to keep the entire deposit no matter how good the apartment looks, then you want to get that last check in hand before you give notice. We'll see. He didn't have to give me 60 days notice and if he was going to screw me I don't think he would have bothered. The big deal here is the moving itself and I'm wondering if there isn't something more in my future than this retirement mausoleum, something within easy walking distance from the theater, for instance, closer to the book store (where I can more fully pursue my habit of no longer buying books), closer to, well, traffic. (And too far to walk to work, which means my health will suffer through lack of exercise because I will start taking the bus again, which means the world will end sooner than I'd been expecting, but so what? Life's a bitch and then you die. Right? Right?)

Well, let's see, let's really have this dribble off. It's a new year (and a new millennium) so let's start it the way it finished, with a series of total non sequiturs and some thoughts about a movie. Finding Forrester was OK. It was. Ebert and the new guy thought it was swell, the first movie they'd ever seen that accurately described what writing was about, which is basically "sit down and write". No argument with that. Talent helps. The young writer is 16 years old when he meets Salinger, er, Forrester, and he is brighter than wet paint. He is brighter and knows his literature better at the age of 16 than you or I will will ever know anything at any point in our lives. Well, better than I will ever know at any point in my life, particularly now that things have started to slip. You, I don't know about.

So I'm running out of photographs. These were taken at the Oakland parade last month. Or month before last. Whenever. The quote is by Samuel Johnson.