wine, roses?

The cops shoveled dirt on my birthday party.

I had one of those teeth dreams the other night. Where it starts with a loose tooth and all of a sudden you have a handful of tooth and blood. My hands were so full that the teeth started falling into my friend’s shag carpet. I woke up disoriented.

Dream nerds will tell you this signifies feelings of chaos:  In general, dreams about losing one’s teeth are common and suggest the dreamer feels powerless or out of control in a real life situation.

Hm. In all the major categories, I’m not feeling out of control. My day job pays the bills, my side job is fulfilling, and my girlfriend is a picnic in the park. So what’s the problem?

San Francisco. Well, let’s not frame it as a problem. After all, this is a place where it smells like eucalyptus and woodsmoke every day when I get home from work. Where every turn in a road can lead to a stunning vista or a charming slice of Candyland. Where people work to live, rather than live to work. The list goes on for miles. So it’s not like San Francisco sucks. It’s just…different from what I know. And it’s leaving me a bit unsettled.

Let’s look at some examples.

-Everyone is high. The other night, I went to a comedy show with a small group of people. We showed up and my companions joined the long line stretching around the corner. I asked somebody, “Is this the line for people buying tickets or picking them up?” They looked at me blankly and shrugged. One of my companions said, earnestly, “Dude you gotta mellow out and stop being so New York.” We ended up late for the show.

-The weather is schizo. Things change from minute to minute and from block to block. Everyone likes to blather on about the “micro-climates” but it’s legitimately jarring to stand in the sun and see rain across the street. Or to start a hike in hotpants and need a parka 30 minutes later.

-Sexual freaks abound. My friend DeWayne, an East Coast transplant like myself, says that if you look around this city, even the Number One Nerd is Rick James behind closed doors. In my limited experience, I can only find evidence that supports this. People go to swinger parties and farmer’s markets interchangeably.

-My deskmate is terrifying. She won’t talk to me for three days, staring ahead blankly if I ask her a direct question. Then, out of the blue, she’ll say, “You need to get more exercise!” and give me a cookie (true story). I bet CIA agents endure this type of sh*t to make sure they are psychologically resilient.

-My alarm clock is haunted. It goes forward 10 minutes, then back two minutes, then stays in place for an hour. It’s like Willy Wonka’s most boring dream. SK and I watched it for half an hour the other night, barely talking, absorbing all the metaphorical implications.

I am happy to be here, I truly am. I just need to pick my teeth out of the shag sometimes.

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14 responses to “wine, roses?

  1. blah, blah, bitch, moan. try moving from new york city to a teensy town in western kentucky, for chrissake. talk about unsettling.

  2. we all make our choices.

  3. hahaha, ernie had this problem the entire time he lived in california…’dude, you’re so east coast’…’dude, stop being so new york’…haha, he said it became infuriating, since people always said it like it was a negative thing.
    hope things settle for you soon mister hirsch. get one of those medical maryjane cards, you’ll be all set.

  4. Definitely get a new alarm clock. Those things can cause panic attacks. The original alarm on my clock was so jarring, when I hear a similar click on television, I jump, and I haven’t used that alarm in 10 years.

  5. That list is hilarious. Schadenfreude, sorry.

  6. oksowhatnowohoknevermind

    I was thinking that maybe you just need a very competent dentist.

  7. San Francisco is a bigger culture shock than Juneau County?

  8. good question, T-Rizzle. Thing is, I was pretty sure Juneau County would be like nothing I had ever experienced. When I arrived, I was psychologically equipped for it to blow my mind.

    San Fran seemed more similar to everything I know so I’m finding myself taken aback by how different it actually is. Make sense?

  9. I did not know anyone wore hotpants anymore….:)

  10. I always thought I fit in just fine in Kentucky, until I was getting ready to leave and all my friends were saying, “yeah, you should go back to a big city, where you belong,” “you’re SO an east coast person,” “you’ll feel so much better when you get back to the city,” etc., etc., ad nauseam. I can totally see your point about SanFran seeming similar and then surprising you. There are huge differences between the attitudes/customs of east- and west-coast people, but you’d still think it wouldn’t be weird, especially considering your experience with living in so many different places.

  11. Haha! I thought losing teeth in your dreams = you are pregnant! I am SO much more comfortable being chaotic than I am being preggers. Thanks for blogging this, now I can rest easy(ish). Miss you!

  12. That example list is golden; my personal favorite is the deskmate description. And there’s no way I would have handled that comedy line situation well.

    Related: on my birthday weekend in D.C., friends and I ate at a crowded tapas joint whose seating policy is fend-for-yourself. As in: hover and stare at the diners until they prepare to leave, and just as they vacate their seats swoop in. Cocktail in hand, I claimed our table within 20 minutes of walking through the door. Victory was sweet, but they should really hire a host/hostess for weekend nights. Things could get uncivilized.

  13. My wife and I moved from Upstate NY to the Seattle area this year and we are still getting used to the West Coast way and get over the impatience and immediacy of the East Coast.

    Service is a little slower but also more personal, the focus seems to be more on the customer rather than just get ’em in and get ’em out. I have to stop and remember to slow down and engage with people since they are not just trying to push me out the door to get to the next customer and so I don’t come off like a rude prick. It takes some getting used to but I am liking it so far.

    Enjoy SF, my goal is to live there at some point in my life it is an amazing city.

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