Dating in the Digital Era

Posted by Rachel Burke | Posted in | Posted on 8:00 PM

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ax

Technology and Dating... Then and Now


Dating... Then.

You meet a guy at a bar. You exchange phone numbers. You suffer through 8 hours of work the next day and come home to the glorious blinking red light of your answering machine.


The two of you stay up all night talking on the phone. This is it. He is The One.

You make plans for the following night.

First date goes according to plan. Second date goes according to plan.

Somewhere around the third date, the phone calls start to fade out.

Insanity kicks in.

The 8 hours at work start to feel like a year. All you can think of is the damn blinking red light.

You arrive home. Nothing.

You stare at the phone, willing it to ring. You wonder what he’s doing, if he’s out with another girl, if he’s sitting home doing the same thing you’re doing.

You debate calling him. You debate leaving, but decide against it in case he does call and you’re not here.

You realize you know where he lives. You consider the unthinkable.

You pick up a bottle of vodka and your best girlfriend. In the off-chance you do get caught, at least you can blame it on the booze.

You do the “drive-by.” His car is nowhere to be found.

You return home with the exact same information you left with.

The light still isn’t blinking.

Dating… Now.

You meet a guy at a bar. You exchange phone numbers, email addresses and Facebook URL’s.

You get absolutely nothing done at work the next day because spend the entire time scouring his Facebook page and digging up any information on him that you possibly can.

You discover the names of his parents, best friends, the city he grew up in, and what he’s done during every weekend since the beginning of time.

The two of you stay up all night texting. You make plans for the following night.

First date goes according to plan. Each time he mentions a relative or friend, you pretend you have no idea who these people are, even though you could pick them out of a lineup.

Second date goes according to plan. There is no mention of a third date yet.

The texts are still coming, but less often.

You refresh his Facebook page every ten minutes. He is now friends with “Theresa Olsen” and “Megan Shea.” Theresa is a 42-year old married woman. Megan is a 22-year old single blonde.

You refresh Megan’s page every ten minutes.

You notice he has a new wall post from “Laura McMillian,” relaying some sort of private joke from the previous night.

You refresh Laura and Megan’s page every ten minutes.

Desperation kicks in. You log on to Facebook IM to see if he’s on. HE IS.

You wait.

You consider “poking” him.

Ah, the glorious popping noise. He wants to know what you’re doing tonight. Relief sets in.

Night falls. Still no text.

You log onto IM again. He’s on. You’re on. He sees you’re on. You log off, because in some sick way, this leaves you feeling the tiniest sense of power.

You check his page again. He is now friends with Tracy Carmen, who has also just left him a smiley face comment.

You come to the conclusion he is sleeping with Megan, Laura and Tracy.

You delete his phone number.

Okay, so maybe I’m exaggerating a teeny bit, but if, at some point, you’ve found yourself concocting some serious internet stalking missions, then you can agree with me that THIS is one of the many reasons why technology is evil. At least before, we could pretend the reason for the silent phone was because his life suddenly became very busy… he just got out of a relationship… you know, the usual lies we feed ourselves to avoid the simple truth that they’re fucking other people. Now, we have Facebook as a daily slap in the face to remind us of this.

But aside from dating and Facebook, I could on go for days about the madness of technology. To quote comedian Louis CK, “Right now, we live in an amazing world, and it’s wasted on the crappiest generation of spoiled idiots.”

In case you need a good laugh, feel free to watch this Louis CK video “Everything’s Amazing and Nobody’s Happy.”



The guy is 100% right. People would rather bitch about what their cell phone can’t do than to praise the nine million amazing things it can do, or complain about how long their flight was delayed instead of reveling in the fact that they’re sitting in a chair in the middle of the fucking sky.

Don’t get me wrong, I think technology is a wonderful thing and has made our lives a million times easier, but at the same time, it’s almost too easy. Think about old TV shows…

TV… Then.“Donna, we need to find David! Have you heard from him?”

“No, I called his house, his work and even the Peach Pit. I'm going to drive down to the beach and see if he’s there. You try calling Brandon, Dylan and Steve and see if anyone has heard from him.”


TV… Now.“Donna, we need to find David! Have you heard from him?”

“Yeah, I texted him. He’s at the beach. He should be here in about fifteen minutes.”


Ever notice how any “crisis” that occurs in modern television always contains a close-up of the cell phone displaying “LOW BATTERY” or “OUT OF SERVICE” in bright neon letters? Because naturally, without that, the storyline would be completely unrealistic.

And also, there’s no mystery anymore. My friends and I went out for lunch today and I swear, every other sentence out of our mouths was “Oh yeah! I read that!” And we’re not talking about the newspaper; we’re talking about each other’s fucking Facebook pages. We all already knew every single detail of what has transpired in each other’s lives over the past week, which doesn’t really leave you with a whole hell of a lot to talk about.

Now think about this from a high school reunion perspective…

High School Reunions… Then.“Oh my GOD! How have you been?”

“Great! My husband and I have three children and live in Colorado now! What about you?”
 

High School Reunions… Now.(Everyone just dumbly stares at each other because they already know everything about every person in the room.)

Again, I’m exaggerating, but this really happened to me. I bumped into a girl I went to high school with at the mall, and I just stared at her for a good thirty seconds like an idiot, because I had absolutely no idea what to say. In that thirty seconds, this is what went through my head:

My mouth starts to form the words: “Hey! How are you?”

My brain answers: “You already know how she is. Her boyfriend Jim McDonald proposed last week.”

My mouth tries to form some more basic questions: “So, are you still working over at the hospital? Where are you living these days?”

My brain answers: “You know she’s still working at the hospital. You also know she’s living in Plymouth with her fiancé and their pug, Winnie.”

I was faced with two dilemmas: I either pretend not to know these details and ask anyway, thus I am a huge liar, or I can let on that I know this, thus I am a huge stalker. Either way, it’s a lose-lose. So instead, I duck my head in shame, mumble something about it being nice to see her, and walk away.

As much as I love iTunes, iPods, cell phones and Facebook… sometimes, I miss the days when things were simpler.

Hell is a Cubicle

Posted by Rachel Burke | Posted in | Posted on 10:08 PM

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It’s been a while since I last blogged, so here’s a little update on what’s been going on the last few months…

February: the day finally came – my 99 weeks of funemployment is over. Back to the workforce I go.

March: Odd-jobs to pay rent- Background acting (cool to see famous people be filmed, not-so-cool to make $8/hr, be on set at 6am, and work ridiculously long hours), consumer product testing (cool to make $100/hr, not-so-cool if you need a steady paycheck.)

So, with no other options available and April’s rent approaching, I reluctantly succumbed to rejoining the world of recruiting.

The invitation to hell:

I land an interview for an insurance call center, and I know the second I step foot in the door that I already hate it. My future boss greets me in the lobby, and my first thought is that he is stunningly gorgeous. After opening his mouth, my second thought is that I can’t believe God would waste such impeccably good looks on such a soulless creature.

As soon as we enter the interview room, I can already tell that he’s one of those suits who talks for the pure sake of hearing himself talk. He tells me at least 27 times that his title is CTO – Chief Talent Officer - which is funny because I’m pretty sure that in every other company on the face of the planet, CTO actually refers to Chief "Technology" Officer. Chief also tells me half a dozen times that he lives near me, but that he's actually “over the hill” (i.e. lives in the Hollywood Hills) and that he has a gym inside his house. I am not impressed. Chief is undoubtedly the type of guy who likes big important titles and big expensive merchandise to overcompensate for other “small” things.

Chief calls me and invites me back for a second interview with the CEO, and instructs me to wear a suit. I dust off the dreaded pieces of pinstriped fabric that I haven’t worn in 6 years. Putting it on feels similar to the way I’d imagine it feels to put on an orange jumpsuit right before being sentenced to life in prison. Like superglue on my skin.

The CEO spends the entire interview staring at me like I’m a meal. Chief makes me an offer of more money than I’ve ever made in my life, and even that isn’t enough to instill any enthusiasm. Instead I reply, “cool,” and tell him I can’t start for two weeks, hoping I’ll find something else in the meantime. But with my rent date nearing and the job search process becoming tedious, I decide to give it a shot and see how bad it really is.

Day 1: My life is Office Space. I am surrounded by cubicles, printers, and people who are either stupid, unhappy, or too stupid to realize they're unhappy. My cubicle evilly beckons from the corner. I want to pour gasoline on it, light a match and run for my life. Words like “corporate environment” and “company morale” make me want to stab myself in the eye. Chief has me come in at 9am and keeps me there until 7pm. When I inquire about the hours, he arrogantly replies, “Well, I don’t know how they work in Boston, but here in L.A., we work 60 hours a week.” Funny how he didn’t mention that in the interview.

Chief represents everything I hate about Corporate America. He doesn’t eat or sleep, his entire life revolves around living and breathing work. He has no spouse, no children, just a big important title and a bunch of expensive things that probably never get used. Newsflash Chief: When you die, I’m pretty sure no one cares how many hours you've worked or how much money you made in the process.

Day 2: I come down with a cold. I haven’t been sick in over 3 years. My body is literally rejecting the idea of returning to the corporate world.

Day 3: I’m actually excited to spend the day out of the office at a college job fair, until I realize that Chief is coming with me. As soon as I get there, he eyes my purse and tells me that purses are unprofessional and I really need to buy a briefcase. I almost laugh until I realize he’s serious.

Day 4: By this point, my body is so numb with misery that I almost start thinking the job might not be that bad. Then Ashley comes. Ashley is the girl who should have my job, because she’s endured the hell of this company for many years, and knows everything about the business there is to know. But Chief insists that she's not qualified for my job because she is not experienced enough (young), not professional enough (fat), and not a good person to represent the company (black). Ashley spends the entire afternoon piling on things for me to do and making it clear that she knows how to do it all. She hates me. My job should be hers. We both know it.

Day 5: I receive a call from a little angel named Laura, who invites me for an interview with an agency that hires for all the L.A. studios. I call in sick, go to the interview, and am greeted by Laura, the beautiful receptionist who saved my life. Laura brings me to meet Rob, the boss. He’s from Boston. He loves me. The office building is gorgeous. The bathrooms are spotless. The people are great. I get offered the job on the spot.

I send my resignation to Chief through the company email and don’t even bother to read his reply. My new boss agrees to let me work part-time hours until I’m done with school. The girls there all wear jeans to work and watch American Idol. I am happy.

I love my new job.

A day in the life of the unemployed...

Posted by Rachel Burke | Posted in | Posted on 12:14 PM

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11:00am: Wake up. Look at the clock. Go back to sleep.

12:00pm: Realize I have to be at school in one hour.

Unemployed observation #1: It is not impossible to oversleep for a 1pm class.

12:15pm: Get up. Make coffee. Check email and Facebook to have some sort of contact with the outside world.

Unemployed observation #2: You become accustomed to keeping track of the days by people’s “Monday complaints” on Facebook.

Confession: Every time I read another “Monday complaint,” I smile a little inside.

12:30pm: Cook an egg an jalapeno omelet. Since my lay-off, I have since discovered that jalapenos are the secret cure for weight loss.

1:00pm: Arrive at class.

Unemployed observation #3: Two hours of school is still better than rotting in a cubicle.

Unemployed observation #4: Almost anything, with the exception of snakes, spiders and Jersey Shore reruns, is better than rotting in a cubicle.


1:05pm: Discreetly eyeball the girl seated behind me who has brought her toddler to class. People, IS THIS ALLOWED?? In any event, I don’t think it’s cute, so I don’t pretend to like it.

1:10pm: Relocate to the opposite side of the classroom. No one notices.

1:15pm: Wonder if I am the only 27 year-old creature with a vagina who would duck if someone ever tossed me a baby.

3:00pm: Leave school. Go food shopping.

Unemployed observation #5: Trader Joe’s is still jam-packed at off-peak hours. There’s no way around it.

4:00pm: Arrive home. Debate on whether or not to shower. Realize 90210 is on Soapnet. Decide not to. Dylan McKay = ‘gasm.

Unemployed observation #6: Showering is for the birds.

5:00pm: Think about going running. Realize another 90210 rerun is on. Decide to go tomorrow.

Unemployed observation #7: Everything you always said you’d do if you didn’t have to work (i.e. get in shape, redecorate your house, start a band) you never actually do. If anything, you only get more lazy.

6:00pm: Check my bank account. Smile.

Unemployed observation #8: Regardless of what anyone says, getting free money does not suck.

6:15pm: Make plans with friends who are now home from work. Realize you still haven’t showered. Shower.

Unemployed observation #9: It is possible to become extremely busy doing absolutely nothing.
8:00pm: Meet friends for drinks. Feign attentive listening while they complain about their day at work. Smile and nod.

Unemployed observation #10: No matter how nice your co-workers were or what qualities you liked about your job, you will never miss it.

11:00pm: Arrive home. Make to-do list for tomorrow. Realize that laundry has morphed from a chore into an exciting fun task.

Unemployed observation #11: The people that say they’d “get bored” on employment are full of it. Only boring people get bored. Fact.
12:00am: Eat klonopin. Eat ice cream. Watch infomercials. Realize there is something seriously wrong with a product called “The Magic Bullet” that doesn’t involve sex.

1:00am: Drift into sleep. Klonopins = Bliss

That’s it for today.

Happy Monday kids.

Dildo for your thoughts?

Posted by Rachel Burke | Posted in | Posted on 9:45 PM

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When it comes to Christmas presents on my dad’s side of the family, no one is safe. Last year, I received a book about the Aztecs and an Andy Warhol pop box from my uncle. From my aunt, I got a multi-colored Bill Cosby sweater that looks like a quilt, and a mini blow-up doll. My stepmother got a book on bird mating.

That said, the following is a re-enactment of what occurred over my Thanksgiving break:

The family sits around the patio enjoying cocktails before Thanksgiving dinner. Auntie enters the room, equipped with wrapped gift boxes. She passes one to me and one to my younger sister.
Auntie: I brought your Christmas presents since I won’t see you next month. Open them! (Smiles expectantly.)

My sister and I exchanged frightened looks. We open the gifts. The first thing I see is a large black bottle with the label “Sexiest Fantasies” on it. Things are looking up.
Me: Wow, sexiest fantasies body spray. Cool. (Like an idiot, I announce this to the whole room.)

I look to my left. My little sister has received the same bottle. I continue digging through the box and uncover a small glass perfume bottle in the shape of a naked woman. My sister receives one with the status of liberty placed on top. She lives in New York. This makes sense, I guess.Me: Wow, I've never seen a perfume bottle with boobs. Thanks, Auntie.

Sister: Um, mine’s actually cologne.

Sister attempts to cover up this ungrateful statement by digging further through the box and handing the sex toys to our little brother, than attempts to pretend she didn’t just attempt to do that.

We keep digging. The next item I remove is a small pink box with the label “Titillation lib balm” scrawled on it, and a white tube with the label “Edible body bling.”
Me: Ooo, titillation lib balm and edible body bling. Nice. (Again, I announce this. I might as well say, please insert creepy inappropriate daughter/stepdaughter/grandaughter titillating-body-bling mental image here.)

Auntie: Yeah, it’s honey vanilla flavored too. (Winks at me.)

Dad casually leaves the room.
Sister: Why does it say on the bottle “’To book parties, please call Felicia?’ Did you get these at a sex toy party?”

Auntie: Oh, yes. And these body sprays have pheremones in them. Do you girls know what pheremones do to men?

Grandpa casually leaves the room.
Me: Oh yeah. I got a vanilla pheremone spray at my last sex toy party.

Sister: This is great. Ryan will love these.

Stepmom suddenly becomes very interested in the ceiling tile patterns.
The rest of the afternoon is spent taste-testing the honey vanilla dust, trying to figure out why they refer to lotion as "body sauce," and avoiding dad, until it’s time to eat.

I think things are looking up in the family present department.

I think when sex toys and paternal parentals are in the same room, things get real weird, real quick.

I think my aunt thinks my sister and I are whores.

Inspirational Quote of the Day

Posted by Rachel Burke | Posted in | Posted on 8:01 PM

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I love this.

"We all have the potential to fall in love a thousand times in our lifetime. It's easy. The first girl I ever loved was someone I knew in sixth grade. Her name was Missy; we talked about horses. The last girl I love will be someone I haven't even met yet, probably. They all count. But there are certain people you love who do something else; they define how you classify what love is supposed to feel like. These are the most important people in your life, and you’ll meet maybe four or five of these people over the span of 80 years. But there’s still one more tier to all this; there is always one person you love who becomes that definition. It usually happens retrospectively, but it happens eventually. This is the person who unknowingly sets the template for what you will always love about other people, even if some of these loveable qualities are self-destructive and unreasonable. The person who defines your understanding of love is not inherently different than anyone else, and they’re often just the person you happen to meet the first time you really, really, want to love someone. But that person still wins. They win, and you lose. Because for the rest of your life, they will control how you feel about everyone else." - Chuck Klosterman

Conquering the Quarter-Life Crisis

Posted by Rachel Burke | Posted in | Posted on 1:48 PM

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I don’t care what anyone says, all women go through a major change once they hit 25. It’s as if we’re all just floating along, enjoying life, and BAM. 25 smacks you out of nowhere. You’re going to be thirty in five years. Party’s over.

You start thinking about all the things in life that you haven't done yet. You still haven't traveled to Brazil... or published that book...

You start analyzing the person you're in a relationship with and wondering why you’re wasting your time with them.

You start analyzing your job. You don’t love it. You don’t even like it.

Every second that passes from that point on feels like a giant waste of life.

Okay, maybe this doesn’t happen to everyone, but it definitely happened to me. I suddenly realized that the dreaded 30 was slowly creeping around the corner and I was facing a few problems, those being:

- I did not want to spend the rest of my life with the person I was in a relationship with.

- I had no idea how to tell the person I was in a relationship with that I did not want to spend the rest of my life with him.

- I did not want to spend the rest of my life at my dead-end job.

- I had no idea how to tell my boss that I did not want to spend the rest of my life at my dead- end job.

- I wanted to travel. And by “travel” I don’t mean “two weeks of approved vacation” per year.

So, first things first. I dumped my boyfriend and moved out. And then he got a new girlfriend. And then I did the whole “I’m sad he’s with someone else and want him back” mourning grievance for about a week. And then I was over it.

Then, by some miraculous grace of God, I didn’t even have to quit my job. I got laid off. Unemployment = amazing.

So I went back to school full time, landed a few freelance gigs for music magazines, wrote two novels, got signed by a lit agent, saw half of the US, and plan on doing a semester in Europe within the next year or so.

Remember, life is what you make of it. So get off your ass and go do it.

Happy Whore-a-ween!

Posted by Rachel Burke | Posted in | Posted on 1:48 PM

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Admit it ladies, there’s only one reason we look forward to Halloween: because it’s the one and only day where it’s deemed socially acceptable to release your inner whore. You can finally unleash that little vixen you’ve been whording inside the depths of your soul on those other 364 days of the year.

And look at the incentives. Every bar within a half mile radius of each other has a “sexiest costume” contest where you can win a shit-ton of money. Think about it, if you pay 5 grand for a new rack, then use that rack to win the $1000 grand prize, they’ve just paid for 20% of your implants. The logistics are surreal.

So my fellow ho-bags, don’t be afraid to slap on a pair of fishnets and your favorite whoredrobe of choice and skank it up. Remember, we’re all in this together.

Happy whore-a-ween, kids.

L.A. I love you, but you’re bringing me down

Posted by Rachel Burke | Posted in | Posted on 1:50 PM

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I planned my trip back to L.A. this past week because my friend and I had tickets to the Muse show at the Staples Center downtown. And, as much as I love my family and friends in Boston, once fall hits, the west coast cravings start to kick in. But it’s not solely the weather I miss, it’s the little things, the stupid miniscule elements of life that homegrown Los Angelites tend to take for granted. Case in point:

The shopping: I spent less than three hours at Venice and came home with a hot silver bikini, an adorable brown vintage hat, and a tan. Not necessarily in that order. 

The beach: What I actually love about their beaches are the bike and jogging trails that run perfectly parallel to them. We don’t have those here. Hell, we don’t even enforce pedestrian laws half the time. Boston crosswalks are just one giant jaywalking free for all.

The food: Del Taco = best milkshakes in the world. In and Out Burger = ridiculous.
Hell, I even love the little 99 cent store/supermarket. They have 59 cent energy drinks. Take that, Red Bull. (Although I’m a little frightened that the sugar free ones contain “2” calories. I often wonder what exactly those 2 calories consist of.)

Okay, so those are just a few of the reasons I was looking forward to the trip. However, I should’ve taken it as a bad omen when the woman seated next to me on the plane was sporting a purple fanny pack.

I flew out Thursday morning and landed in LA at 11am. Through Priceline, I was able to book a hotel room for $38 a night in the LAX airport. Decent hotel, decent location, and their complimentary breakfast area even had a waffle maker. Score.

After suffering through the inevitable hell on earth otherwise known as LA traffic, I met my friend Kerry that night for dinner at Swingers, the Rock and Roll Diner on Beverly Blvd. (“Bite-Me” cupcakes = kick-ass). Then I dragged her over to the Rainbow on Sunset. And no, it’s not a gay bar. For those of you who are unaware, the Rainbow is a seedy sinkhole in West Hollywood oozing with dozens of chauvinistic jockstraps and viagara-popping washed-up rock stars. The outdoor patio is always fishbowled with pot smoke. The bathrooms are inhumanly unsanitary. And yet, I adore the place.

Friday, after my shopping expedition on Venice, I met my friend Jesse for dinner. Now, before I get into dinner details, let me start by saying simply that Jesse rules. A lot of Los Angelites tend to get caught up in the glitzy, “important-people” scene, whereas Jesse is the opposite and incredibly humble. I learned this when he offered to bring me out to a party my first weekend in L.A, with no other details offered. En route to the party, I ask him where we’re going. He tells me we’re going to Russell Brand’s party at Bar Marmont, because apparently Jesse is a personal trainer for celebs, something I knew nothing about. Internally, the dorky part of me wants to ask if Katy Perry is going to be there, then text, tweet and Facebook all my friends about it. Instead I nod and reply, “Cool.”

Jesse and I go to dinner at Katsuyah, a very posh, trendy Sushi spot on Hollywood Blvd where virtually everyone in the crowd mirrors each other.

Conversation between Jesse and I at the bar:

Jesse: “I don’t even know why I come here. Every girl in this place looks exactly the same.”

Me: (Nods.) “Overdressed and label-obsessed.”

Jesse: “Exactly.”

And it’s true. The female dress code for the most part is a short-short dress that looks like it’s been laminated to their body and frighteningly high stilettos. They spend 90% of the night watching the door, like they’re waiting for someone important to walk through and save them from the idiots occupying their table. Their conversation starters are always a complimentary statement about an article of your clothing. However, the cucumber melon mojitos and spicy tuna rolls are to die for, so I keep going back.

Moving on to Saturday…

Okay, here comes the good stuff. Saturday was supposed to the highlight of my trip. I had plans to meet my friend Harper at her new place in Newport Beach, then head back to L.A. to see Muse play at the Staples center downtown. With my new hat, new bikini and “El Sol” scary Spanish energy drink, everything was going according to plan. Harper and I spent the afternoon on the beach, and the weather was freakishly in the 90’s because SoCal was having a heat wave. Then Harper’s roommate met us at the beach, and we all piled in my car and headed back to their place around 5.

Now, let me just state for the record that I have a horrible track record of being robbed every time I leave the state. And it’s not a case of stupidity either, it’s just pure bad luck. It all started when I was seventeen and got panhandled at one of those flea markets in Greece, and the most recent occurrence was last November, when my rental car window was smashed and every electrical appliance in my suitcase was removed, laptops, cameras, GPS, you name it. Bastards even stole my hair straightener. Talk about hitting a girl where it hurts.

So what happens next goes as follows:

I drive my rental car to Jack in the Box and order a sandwich. Harper’s roommate who is in the backseat hands me my purse which is next to her. I remove my wallet, take out a twenty, hand it to the cashier. He hands me back the change, which I place in my purse and toss in the backseat.

We arrive at their apartment a few minutes later. I say goodbye as they leave the car. I reach into the backseat, get my purse, and notice that my wallet is missing. I search the entire car. Nothing.

Now, from the time I placed my wallet in my purse and threw it in the back, to the time we arrived at the apartment, no one left the car. There is one girl in the backseat with my purse. You do the math. 

I go inside the apartment. Harper and I confront the roommate. She says she doesn’t have it. We search the apartment and can’t find it. She still refuses to admit she has it. I call the police, who then come and search for it. They can’t find it either. I am now without a license and am supposed to board a plane in two days with absolutely no form of identification and no money, because all my money and credit cards are in my wallet.

The police report filing takes so long that by the time I get back to LA and meet Kerry, we miss half of the Muse show. The whole reason I came to LA in the first place.

Come Sunday, I was supposed to go gay-bar hopping in West Hollywood with Jesse because, according to him “gay men have great taste in modern architecture,” thus most of WeHo contains loads (no pun intended) of bars with sleek, uber hip décor and seductive lighting. But sans ID, no go. So I spend the day instead cancelling all my credit cards and mourning the death of my wallet. I find out from TSA I will have to complete a two-hour interview with them to confirm my identity if I want to fly home without an ID.

Monday morning, I receive a phone call from a security guard at Newport Beach Hospital informing me that an employee found my wallet in a trash bin. I make the hour drive to Newport Beach, recover my wallet, drive an hour back, drop off my rental, take the shuttle to the airport, and make my 1pm flight with about 30 seconds to spare.

Yes, people, this is my life.

And in recent news, the thief has also admitted to stealing my wallet. Not that it matters now.

In any event, I am headed to NYC next weekend to visit my sister and see my beloved favorite singer Jimmy Gnecco perform at the Don Hills venue in Manhattan. I will be duck taping my wallet to my chest this time around. Stay tuned…