Monthly Archives: April 2007

Update from the Couch

In the hospital between naps, visits, phone calls and blood tests I watched:

High Noon – great movie with Gary Cooper
part of 100 Rifles – another old western with Burt Reynolds and Raquel Welch
part of Mars Attacks – funny
part of The Legend of Sleepy Hollow – didn’t see enough of it to judge
part of Primal Fear – one of my favorite movies
most of Shanghai Nights – very funny (the villain is the councilman on The Wire)

Since I’ve been home, I’ve watched:

Holiday – so so romantic comedy
Memoirs of a Geisha – also so so
Hustle & Flow – good movie if you’re into pimps, hos and rap music
The Pursuit of Happyness – great movie, made me cry
Casino Royale – very entertaining if you like James Bond
The Queen – great movie
Bobby – great movie, also made me cry
The Last King of Scotland – fantastic movie
Iraq in Fragments – good documentary about present-day Iraq
The Departed – great Scorcese movie
Babel – very good movie, although not as good as Last King of Scotland and The Departed

I’ve tried to read, but keep falling asleep, and I’m all caught up on the TV shows I want to watch. If you have any good movie suggestions, let me know!



Filed under Miscellaneous

Be Careful What You Wish For


This has been one HECTIC week. Some people have asked me why I haven’t been blogging much lately. One of the reasons is that I took a time management workshop and realized that if I wanted to be more productive and get more writing done, I would have to cut down on some of the unnecessary things in my life, including blogging.

The other reason is this little guy, whom we are expecting around Dec. 2. S(he) is what has been on my mind lately, as well as the nausea and fatigue that comes with pregnancy. Eating constantly is what has helped me fend off the nausea, which has caused me to gain more weight than I should by this time (nine weeks). I was a bit depressed about it Thursday night and wishing I could lose a couple of pounds, but it isn’t safe to lose weight while you’re pregnant.

The next morning, Friday morning, I had a lot of abdominal pain and starting vomiting, but just attributed it to bad morning sickness. It got worse throughout the day, though, and I eventually went to the doctor, who sent me to the ER for an ultrasound. It turned out I had appendicitis. I was in an ER room until 3 a.m. when they finally admitted me to the hospital. Yesterday, Saturday, I had my appendix out. Fortunately, the surgery didn’t affect the baby and a follow-up ultrasound confirmed that (s)he is fine. Today I was released and am now holed up on the couch watching movies. I’m okay as long as I’m lying down, but getting up and walking around is pretty painful. So far I’ve survived without pain killer, but the Vicodin they prescribed me is sounding more and more appealing. I have lost at least a couple of pounds, not the way I would have liked. Like I said, be careful what you wish for!

And now that the cat is out of the bag, I’ll be blogging more about the joys and trials of pregnancy.


Filed under Pregnancy

Monte Carlo


Some of you know that Martin has a jam room in the basement and that every Tuesday night he has guys over to jam. The result of those jams is often a submission to, where his song goes up against a bunch of other songs for best song of the week. Martin’s band has a different name depending on who shows up to jam. Sometimes it’s The Older Brothers; sometimes it’s Zipline. This week it’s Monte Carlo (Steve, Roger, Martin) and they have a pretty good song, so check it out here and vote for the song you like best by clicking next to the name of the band.

*Update: Monte Carlo won! Woo hoo!

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Filed under Miscellaneous

I survived Porch Light

I did it! It was a totally nerve-wracking experience until I got up on stage, and then I was fine. It went really well, and thank you to all you fabulous people who took time out of your busy schedules to make the trip. Next time I’ll remember to have someone video tape it!


Filed under Writing

Valentino Achak Deng


I finally finished What is the What?, a novel written by Dave Eggers about the life story of Valentino Achak Deng, one of the famous Lost Boys of Sudan. It took me forever because it’s long and because I didn’t want to lug a big hardcover to Patagonia. Anyway, it’s a fantastic book—never a dull moment—and I highly recommend it to EVERYONE. And if you don’t want to read the book, at least check out Valentino’s website here. You can find out more about him and other Sudanese refugees there, as well as information about the Darfur conflict and what his foundation is doing to rebuild parts of Southern Sudan. For a taste of what life is like for the Lost Boys living in the U.S., rent the documentary The Lost Boys of Sudan.


Filed under Writing

Porch Light—change of venue

Looks like Porch Light is at Cafe du Nord, not the Swedish American Hall, this month. Here is the info:

Monday, April 23
Porch Light presents:
The New Black: The Fashion Show

Perhaps our most purposefully fabulous show to date, Porchlight dips into the dramatic world of hem lengths and lapel widths to present a show all about what you wear on your back.

Stories by:

Filmmaker Cathy Begien

Joe Boxer honcho Nick Graham!

Cordarounds creator Chris Lindland!

Fashion hound Kirk Read !

Glitterlimes maven Debbie Tuch!

Writer and former model Meghan Ward !

WHERE: Cafe du Nord, 2170 Market Street
WHEN: Monday, April 23

Doors 7:00, Stories begin at 8pm

TICKETS: $12 door, also available at

San Francisco’s dilettante, Cathy Begien, was born in Singapore but raised in Saudi Arabia and Southern California. She attended UC Santa Cruz for writing and then moved to San Francisco where she teamed up with the video vagabonds who found a home at Edinburgh Castle Pub. While the wee hours of the night are devoted to her arts and crafts, her days have been spent styling and window dressing for retailers such as Gucci, Gap, and currently The North Face. Begien has participated in several film festivals around the world and group shows (including The Getty Center and Angela Hanley Gallery in Los Angeles), and is represented by Winkleman Gallery in New York. When not busy hiding in her closet (her production studio is known as Closet Arts), she can be found face down on a blanket in Dolores Park.

Nicholas Graham, founder and CUO (Chief Underpants Officer) of the ubiquitous JOE BOXER brand, changed the face of fashion when he turned his “little” underwear company into one of America’s most popular lifestyle brands. A native of Calgary, Canada, Graham moved to San Francisco in 1982 to pursue a career in music. As he says, the nights were longer than his hair, and he couldn’t afford to cut either of them. So he turned his eye to fashion design and the restless pursuit of entertaining himself. Graham sold JOE BOXER in 2001 and founded The 100 Minute Company, which is involved in a wide range of projects from comedy and music promotion, film and television production, media brand development, and product design across a wide variety of industries.

Reclusive pants visionary Chris Lindland, creator of
Cordarounds , only agrees to one interview a decade, and Porchlight is honored to have him PRECISELY chart the future of fashion in our humble forum. Note: Please, no flash photography when Lindland speaks.

Kirk Read is the author of How I Learned to Snap and cohosts the open mics K’vetsh and Smack Dab. He recently returned from a 32 city tour of the U.S. with two vans full of strippers and prostitutes. He enjoys psychadelic mushrooms and cooking for large groups.

After graduating from the Rhode Island School of Design in 1996 Debbie Tuch immediately began building her Glitterlimes empire, using resin and glitter to encase fruit, snacks or just about anything in a protective shell which you can pin to your coat, your hat or your ears. Stick one on your fridge or car. Wear one on your shoes! Daringly attach to your tongue! With a goal to outfit every living human with one of these magical Glitter accessories, the fun has just begun!

Meghan Ward is a freelance writer and editor at work on her first book, a memoir titled Paris on Less Than $10,000 a Day. Meghan worked as a high-fashion model in Europe and Japan from 1988 to 1994, before returning to the U.S. to attend UCLA. Since then she has worked as a temp, a restaurant hostess, a reporter, an editor, a special ed teacher, and a French tutor. She lives in Berkeley, CA, with her husband and their two cats.


Filed under Writing

Dude, Where’s My Comfort Zone?

I am TOTALLY stressed out about doing Porchlight! I hate being on stage, and I hate public speaking. Once I took an acting class and days before I had to perform one of my scene, I went skydiving. After that, I thought, “I could have died. What’s the worst thing that could happen to me on stage? They’ll laugh at me?” And that gave me the courage to do my scene and it went very well, so well that the teacher bumped me up to the advanced class. However, I don’t plan to do any skydiving in the next two weeks, and climbing (even leading), doesn’t seem to have the same effect. I know several people who have done Porchlight, so I thought, “Oh, I can do that, too.” Then I just ran into one guy who’s done it, and he said, “It was brutal. I almost wish I hadn’t done it. You get up there and you think, ‘Holy shit. There are 350 people out there.’ ” Uh, thanks. I feel like jumping out of a plane now—without a parachute. So why am I doing it if I think it will be so awful? To prove that I can. To get better at public speaking. To get my work out there, etc. And all I can do is practice. Practice and practice and practice, so that’s what I’ll be doing for the next two weeks (after I figure out what my story is.) Then in just ten minutes and it will all be over.


Filed under Writing