\Unfortunately I seem to no longer know who I am. The stateSo having spent the day yesterday at Target, becoming a new dweller in a building with nothing, including hooks in the closet or shelves in case you want to just throw things in, I realize how difficult, or as they would say now in more evolved circles, "challenging" it is to start over. T.S. Eliot wrote:
I am old, I am old,
I will wear my stockings rolled.I, refusing to use the word old, have writtenI am older, I am olderI will wear my colors bolder.So I am clad in bright orange, the color of change, and, as my good doctor points out, it's also the color of identity.of confusion that arises from moving is, in this instance, compounded by the kind of comedy that arises from frustration. But it is a style of comedy they are no longer making. Philip Roth said "Nothing bad can ever happen to a writer," but that's because he never had children. In the same way all these misadventures would be worthwhile if you could sell them, but The Egg and I is long curdled and dead, and you could not sell this to the movies, unless you could make it Iron Woman 4. I am no longer that strong.I went to hang up my new, fluffy orange towel in the bathroom to brighten it up: the towel rack came off the wall and fell into the toilet. Then it turned out my towel was a blanket. The aviso on the ticket that comes with it says: for your dorm room. Sure.I know it will all be all right, unless it isn't. The gym that was promised to be installed in this building has been cancelled as they can't get approval from the city as the place is too old. Maybe I am, too.Don't say that, Gwen, even to yourself in passing, sotto voce, under your breath. Kurt Vonnegut said "Women are resourceful. Look at you: you're resourceful." Those words, from that great and gifted gentleman, have kept me going for several years.So I have resurrected my own sense of optimism and decided it is not too late to start over. Target and Ikea in my corner, and across my living room and bedroom floor, I begin.I have my cell-- the phone that is-- and have just installed my land line with the help of a young woman who is working her way through online college and majoring in computer science, wouldn't you know. My number begins with 666(that's easy to remember if I disallow it, not really believing there is really anything Satanic in this world, if you don't count the Republicans) and the rest of it spells a word I can easily give to friends, so they can remember, while they still can. I recall when I first went back to New York some years ago my number spelled PUPPIES. I had a borderline relationship with a very attractive(he was then) actor from the Actor's Studio,once the center of how I evaluated talent, who remembered it as PUSSIES, but that's the kind of guy he was. Anyway, I'm excited to have a number that spells something, so ask me and I'll give it to you, unless you're soliciting.
This afternoon I am going to a fundraiser for Environment California.org which I believe I must begin supporting, as the air was visible from the plane, happy as I was to be re-landing here. I am going to give them a hefty percentage of what royalties I earn from The DAughter of God, my new book which had brilliant art by Joel Iskowitz who must be allowed to keep all his royalties as he has recently been let go by the Mint, for whom he has made many exquisite designs, some of them on coins you may have in your pocket which are already worth less than the metal they are forged on.
Then I shall come back to this little hotel and sleep, perchance to dream, and hope to receive inspiration for all I want to accomplish by moving back here. Everything already appears to have been the right move if you don't count the unfortunate details like the towel rack, and the chair that has come from Target with only three legs. My friend Ellen, an interior designer with exquisite taste and a wardrobe to match, has seen my little apartment and pronounced it fine, so I am heartened. We spent yesterday afternoon at Century City, a place that lifts my spirit and makes me smile when I see that it features the new electric car that costs $99,000 and I see that there are actually people going to look at it.
The bellman from the Mosaic took two Russian ladies to Bergdorf where they spent $60,000 in very few minutes on one floor, and then cancelled a spa appointment at Saks for which they had pre-paid $800, and did not even turn a hair at having to forfeit it, so I don't think we are the only country with a Mafia. I spent a peaceful hour or so in the nail salon behind my hotel where they were collecting money for the Powerball from all the ladies, which they still can be called in Beverly Hills, and there was more of a sense of Community in that handsoak than in all the time I was in New York, where the people in your own building avert their eyes for fear you might ask them for something. The colors I chose for my nails-- I choose as much by the name as the shade, was "Don't toy with Me," for my toes, and "Nomad's Dream," for my fingers. I accept now that I am a nomad, or, as my darling Don characterized me, "The Wandering Quaker-Buddhist-Jew." But I am strongly beginning to re-affirm my certainty that there is Something in charge of the Universe, or my landlord wouldn't have been in the Rite-Aid the same time I was, buying everything I needed for my bathroom and kitchen, offering to transport it all back to the apartment for me. I mean, right at the check-out stand, at the exact moment I was wondering how I would get it there, when I had no car. You have no idea how many checkout stands there are in Beverly Hills. Some would call it coincidence. But for me, it is Divine Order.