Archive for the ‘People in LA’ Category



January 8, 2009

6 January 2009

For many years now, another profession that has appealed to me (in addition to writing/filmmaking) is that of Life Coach.  Yes, I know – add this to the list that also includes stage actor, dog whisperer, roller coaster designer, novelist, fitness magazine cover model, professional psychic, full-time sexy person and trained snorkeler.  So what of it?  I’m layered.

In 2008, when I was still living in Minneapolis, I decided to do a little research about Life Coaching.  A little research never hurt anyone, right?  And it’s free.  Of course, in 2004 I decided to “just do a little research” about nose jobs and a month later had a new schnoz, which definitely was NOT free, as fond as I am of the revised sniffer.

Anyhoo – with Life Coaching, you have the opportunity to help other people become the best version of themselves they want to be, which seriously jazzes me.  THEY still do the work, though, much like a basketball coach is not out there on the field, diamond, court, track … whatever the playing surface in basketball is called … but rather there to help the players focus on their strengths, develop other areas and apply their natural skills to the team and to the goal of winning.

I realized about a week ago that I’ve been seriously studying all of the things that are part of Life Coaching – at least the kind of Coaching I’d like to do – for more than four years!  Clearing life clutter, focusing on what makes you feel good, the Law of Attraction, living presently, etc.  Dang!  As I continued to ponder my studies, I thought of still more research/prep work I’d done even further back in time – such as discovering Julia Cameron’s “The Artist’s Way” in 1998/1999 (LOOOOOOVE this book), and even reading Louise Hay’s seminal “You Can Heal Your Life” in my early 20s.  Cool.  I’m not as much of a newbie as I thought.  The Universe has been winking at me all this time.  Who’da thunk?

One of my accomplishments in 2009 (here’s the full list) will be certification as a Life Coach.  Still, I’m intrigued to start sharing what I know, how I can communicate it to others, designing a plan for them, what the whole process will be like for me in the real world and so forth.  This past weekend I was chatting with one of the animal rescue volunteers – the only one who isn’t still a teenager.  He’s an actor, and he mentioned he’s somewhat frustrated with life, career and other things, so I offered to help him out.  I’m sure he’ll be a famous television or film star soon enough, so out of respect for his privacy, we’ll call him Bryan.

We met for coffee today and I said if he was willing to be my guinea pig, I would coach him for free.  As payment, I joked that I would like to be mentioned during his acceptance speech at the Oscars.  (Of course, I might not hear it because I’ll likely be backstage taking questions from the press because I just won too, but these are logistics we can suss out later.)  Bryan’s an ideal client because he is ready for and wants to make changes in his life, and those are the kind of Life Coachees who will make the best progress.  I’ll keep you posted on how all of that goes!


Life aboard

January 6, 2009

5 January 2009

Not too much excitement today.  I had coffee with a friend, and was excited to start making contact with all the industry people who have been busy since the holidays.  “Call me in the new year!  Call me after the 1st.  We’re hiring in January!”  So it’s finally  here, and that’s good news!

The end of my lease (April 1) is going to show up quickly, so I’ve started looking at apartments.  I need to carefully consider where my next move is going to be, so I want to be clear on what I can get and for how much.  I found one apartment in Marina del Rey that is actually a sailboat in the marina.  How sweet would that be?!  Living on the water in my own little S.S. Minnow.  Plus, it was cheaper than most of the rentals I’d found on Craigslist.

After work yesterday, I made my way there to look at it.  While I was waiting my turn for the boat owner/landlord to show me the boat, I realized how incredibly quiet it was.  Wow.  I’ve been nowhere in LA that was this quiet, not even in the ‘burbs in the Valley.  It was noticeable.  Cool.  Water AND quiet.  Mind you, with all of this, I still have no clue how I would pay for this rental at this time, but anyway…

It was finally my turn and the owner and I chatted while we walked there.  He is a musician in town and he writes/performs music that promotes environmental awareness.  OK, so he’s kindof a hippee like me.  That’s cool.  He’s an Italian guy (I think), so he has an accent that is delightful. During the showing, we talked about art and life and the Universe and creativity, so that was interesting.  I can talk about that stuff endlessly with those willing to listen.  He was an intriguing fellow.  He meditates a lot, and he wants to make sure he rents the space to someone who will use the solitude and quiet of the marina to find peace in their own world, so that their calm energy will then emanate into the world.  I can appreciate that.  As for the boat…

Now, I’m not opposed to a small living space.  Even in my room now with the limited stuff I brought with me from Minneapolis, it is astounding the mess I can create.  For me, more space equates to more mess.  (Hmm, maybe I should rewrite that story.)  However, the boat was just a little TOO cozy.  With a dog in the picture – which there will be – we’d be stepping on each other all the time.  Actually, the boat – while charming – was the human equivalent of a dog crate, only I wouldn’t have enough room to stand up or turn around.  I don’t think it’d be easy living an environment where you can’t stand fully upright without bonking your head.

Going with the dog crate analogy, this was also not a place in which I could go to the bathroom, since there wasn’t a working toilet onboard.  Ouch.  I can deal with having to go to the marina to shower, but when I’ve got to pee at 4 in the morning?  Um, no.  Or got forbid I eat some bad seafood or something.  Eeew.  I don’t even want to think about it.  Would I have to buy a bedpan for these circumstances?  Pee in a jug?  Yeah, this really wasn’t the life I was envisioning for myself.

I enjoyed the chat with the landlord, though, and figured he must have a website where I could hear some of his music.  I asked for a card, but he didn’t have one.  [Sidebar:  I am amazed at the number of people in Los Angeles — the city of networking and connections — who do not have cards at the ready every second.  ONCE I’ve been ‘caught’ without my cards, and it was with a movie producer.  Lesson learned.]  Anyway, he said he’d send me some links since he still had my email.  I told him regardless of how the boat situation works out, he should keep in touch.  As artists, we need to support and help one another out, right?  He agreed, saying we should grab coffee, meditate together and possibly exchange energies.

Um, I’m sorry… what was that last thing again?  “We could exchange energies.”  OK.  Was that a come-on?  I wasn’t sure.  I stood there for a minute, thinking I must’ve looked like a deer caught in headlights, because this has never been proposed to me before.  Then I realized I was just standing there and there had been an awkward pause where no one had spoken.  I said something to end it, but what that was I can’t recall.

“Exchange energies.”  I am giving that to y’all as a freebie.  Try using it on your husbands, wives, significant others, boy/girlfriends, drunken nightclub hook-ups or online tricks and let me know how it works for you.  I’ll publish the results after extensive data has been returned to me.


100 Accomplishments

January 4, 2009

3 January 2009

A few years ago, I was reading one of the hippie/raw food eating/metaphysical philosophy books I own (and cherish, thanks very much), and the author touted the importance of making a list of 100 things you want to accomplish in the next year.  These aren’t resolutions, mind you.  This is another way of visualizing the life you’d like to lead for the next year.  Much like a vision board, I suppose.  A big, comprehensive list of the things you want to do, see, have, learn, experience, etc.

In the several years I’ve done this exercise, I’ve yet to come up with 100 things.  Can you believe that??  I’m even including things like, “I replaced all of my tattered underwear!” and “Purchased a fancy watch!”  I came up with everything my brain can imagine that I really want right now.  Special thanks to my sister for posting a similar list on her blog from which I ‘borrowed’ several fantastic suggestions.

One of the challenges is that the accomplishments have to be measurable.  Nothing vague like, “I will be in the best shape of my life.”  However, “I gained 15 pounds of muscle” works, as does “I returned to tai chi play three times per week.”  Sometimes, I admit, I’m not 100% successful with this.  I know I’ll keep revamping and revising until it’s compliant with this rule, though.

The list is all over the place – career stuff, personal stuff, travel items, material things.  Writing the list makes you think BIG about everything you want in your life, and not stopping until you reach 100 really forces you to expand your mind.  Here’s my list as it stands right now:

1.  New apartment that is quiet, peaceful, near the beach and where I can have a pup
2.  New bicycle
3.  New car
4.  One screenplay optioned (minimum)
5.  Ran a marathon
6.  Added 15 pounds of muscle
7.  Wrote two new screenplays (minimum)
8.  Became financially independent – my investments earn enough to pay my expenses
9.  Earned $1000 worth of writing income per week (business, creative, technical, articles, etc.)
10.  Up and running with my iPhone
11.  LA365 blog receives 50,000 hits per day
12.  Arctic Dog Films website is up and running
13.  Learned to surf! (and own all the accoutrements)
14.  Met and am sharing life with my next great love
15.  Enjoying my new MacbookPro w/Final Cut and ACS4
16.  Studied & developed my intuitive abilities and put them to use (reading people)
17.  Learned to speak French
18.  Learned to speak Spanish
19.  Went for an extended trip to Paris (and explored Europe, too)
20.  Bought a new guitar
21.  Took guitar lessons and relearned to play
22.  Wrote a song on my guitar
23.  Produced and starred in my own cabaret show
24.  Directed and produced ILLUME
25.  Completely simplified and organized every aspect of my life (a la “Coach Yourself…”)
26.  Went on a ski trip to the Rockies
27.  Trip to NYC
28.  Secured production deals with two companies (one is a major studio)
29.  Started voice lessons again
30.  Relearned TaiChi grand long form
31.  Began regular yoga practice
32.  Took an RSVP, Atlantis or Zoom Vacation
33.  Had a sitting with a professional photographer
34.  Gave $15,000 to charity
35.  Volunteered at least 10 hours per month
36.  Enjoyed monthly spa days
37.  Swam with dolphins
38.  Went horseback riding
39.  Had lunch, dinner or drinks with Oprah Winfrey
40.  Returned to an 80% raw food eating plan
41.  New Vespa
42.  Saved 6 months worth of expenses as a reserve
43.  Paid off my credit cards
44.  Paid back monies owed to my family
45.  Current with my taxes & loved by the IRS
46.  Earned $1,000,000 income!!!
47.  Went on a yoga/meditation retreat
48.  Take an Alaskan cruise
49.  Landed an agent – both literary and directing
50.  Hired an assistant
51.  Hired a housekeeper
52.  Hired a personal, raw food chef
53.  Purchased a high-end watch
54.  Purchased a hi-def television set
55.  Raw foods and health supplements are delivered to my home
56.  Traveled to the Grand Canyon
57.  Traveled to Australia
58.  Developed a photography hobby
59.  Enjoying a sleek, new NIKON D60 digital camera for aforementioned hobby
60.  Finished a triathlon
61.  Revamped my wardrobe/style/image & am able to cultivate it authentically
62.  Wrote & produced fun webisode series about dating
63.  Bought a piano and took piano lessons
64.  Acted in a small role in a film
65.  Performed in a play or musical here in LA
66.  Had coffee, lunch or drinks with Meryl Streep
67.  Had a successful pitch meeting at Focus Features which resulted in an option
68.  Talked with Steven Spielberg at an industry event
69.  Attended a swanky Oscar after-party!
70.  Wrote a novel
71.  Unloaded my Minneapolis condo
72.  Rescued at least two dogs
73.  Attended a Hicks/Abraham seminar
74.  Dinner with Jerry & Esther Hicks
75.  New collection of fancy-schmancy underwear
76.  New running shoes
77.  New running shoe heel inserts
78.  Sweet new rollerblades
79.  Attached a name actor to ILLUME (minimum)
80.  Was mentored by and established relationships with multiple entertainment industry pros
81.  Purchased a brand new professional-grade video camera for vlogging & webisode work
82.  Took golf lessons
83.  Bought golf clubs and golf accoutrements
84.  New backpack/satchel thing for hauling around all m’stuff
85.  Became a certified Life Coach
86.  Slept under the stars
87.  Went to Disneyland
88.  Planted a garden and grew my own vegetables
89.  Went skinny dipping
90.  Kissed that someone special in the rain (see #14)
91.  Went for a moonlit walk along the beach
92.  Went to a drive-in movie (double-feature would be awesome!)
93.  Joined a book club
94.  Visited every major film studio lot in Los Angeles
95.  Took a Hawaiian vacation
96.  Watched the northern lights
97.  Have a new home stereo system
98.  Bought some sweet BOSE noise-reduction headphones
99.  Read every script nominated for “Best Original Screenplay” within the past 10 years
100.  Watched every “Best Picture” Oscar winner for the past 30 years

Give this exercise a try.  It isn’t as easy as it sounds!


Day 99: The girls next door

November 11, 2008

10 November 2008

Even though I’ve lived at Yvonne and Ed’s a while, I JUST discovered that if I go to the side of the house outside, I can see the two beautiful German shepherds that live next door.  There’s a small gap in the fencing/wall where I can reach over and pet them.  Bella and Chocolate.  Sisters.  Dear God, these are two of the most stunning specimens of German shepherd I have ever seen.  Just beautiful.  This is not a great picture (camera phone, you know), but here they are.  Bella on the left, Chocolate on the right.


Look at their faces!!  These dogs are desperate for attention.  A few weeks ago (before moving to WeHo for a short time), I had the privilege of meeting Chocolate out on the street.  She was the sweetest and most gentle creature, and again, so beautiful.  What devastates me is that Chocolate’s owner told me her family really doesn’t have time for these two dogs, which is obvious.

They are kept in gravel-lined pen on the side of the house.  There’s so much dog waste in the pen, they have flies landing on them constantly.  They are never walked, despite the fact that the neighbors have two teenage sons.  Dogs this size need exercise!  Is it any wonder they’re hyper when somebody walks by?  They also need love and affection, evidenced by the fact that Chocolate refused to leave my side that day I met her out on the sidewalk.  FINALLY, someone was paying attention to her!

It confounds me.  I’m not saying the neighbors are bad people, don’t get me wrong.  Like most, they’re just a family trying to get by, raise their kids, live decent lives, etc.  There is no judgment on my part, nor should there be.  Still, if they don’t have time to care for them, why have two big dogs like this?  And they are BIG.  I’m guessing Chocolate is 110 pounds and Bella is probably 100.  Look at their huge paws!  When they jump up on the wall (like in the picture), I get big wet kisses on my hands, arms and face while I’m petting them.  To some extent, I can tell they’re thinking, “What the hell is this guy doing?  Rubbing our heads and haunches and paws?  Scratching our snoots?  We’ve never experienced anything like this before!  Is this how it’s supposed to be?”

Before too long, I’ve got tears streaming down my face because these amazing creatures deserve better living conditions than this.  It further devastates me that I don’t have my own place to live.  Not even for me, but a place where I could give Bella and Chocolate lots of love and attention and exercise, and the family could be relieved of the responsibility they are seemingly unable to handle.  I know… I can’t solve all the world’s problems… that sucks, too.

I’m going to volunteer to walk the dogs for them, but what happens after I leave West Hills?  They’ll go back to confinement, flies and no attention.  Breaks my heart.


Another blackout: Days 85-97

November 10, 2008

Oy.  I’ve lapsed again.  Yes, life is busy and has thrown some curve balls.  To catch up briefly:

Halloween in West Hollywood was an intersting sight.  A quarter of a million people on Santa Monica Boulevard – and not just the gays either, oh no.  Gays, straighties and everyone in between.  There was enough body glitter in use to blanket a small town.  I’m still trying to decipher what someone wearing a doily, suspenders and a strategically placed tube sock is supposed to be, but whatever.  People were there with their families and everyone was having a rip-snorting hedonistic time.  Truth be told, though, my tolerance threshold for drunkenness en masse is pretty low, so about 45 minutes there and I was good to go.

Then of course, there was election night.  An exciting night, but dang, I was glad when that was over.  I was suffering from SERIOUS election fatigue.  The election of Barack Obama is bittersweet for many in California, however, since it was tempered with the passage of Proposition 8.

Apparently, married gays and lesbians have the ability to unravel the fabric of American society, or better yet – destroy the sanctity of marriage as God deemed it so WORLDWIDE.  Well, shit!  When I was in my 7-year relationship a while back, I really wish I knew we wielded that much power while doing unthinkable, aberrant homo stuff like laundry, watching TV or picking up our dog’s crap in the back yard.  Dang!  Missed opportunities.  Apparently, we could have RULED THE WORLD!

So ladies and gentlemen… drum roll please… California’s Proposition 8 will mark the first time in California history that the Constitution has been amended to rescind rights, rather than to grant them.  Yay California voters.  Another first.  “As California goes, so goes the nation,” I heard it said.  Eek.

Maybe during the next election, the same group that sponsored and passed this proposition will rescind my voting rights too, or maybe my right to employment opportunities.  What’s to stop them, really?  They managed to get this one through.  Think it seems far fetched?  I’m not so sure, and I’d bet money (if I had any) that someone is already pondering the argument – someone who, is all likelihood, is a latent, self-hating queer bigger than all the ‘mos in California combined.  You know it!  (Exhibit A:  Larry Craig, right?)

Rocker and uber-lesbian Melissa Etheridge had this to say in an article, which I thought was pretty frackin’ brazilliant:

Okay. So Prop 8 passed. Alright, I get it. 51% of you think that I am a second class citizen. Alright then. So my wife, uh I mean, roommate? Girlfriend? Special lady friend? You are gonna have to help me here because I am not sure what to call her now. Anyways, she and I are not allowed the same right under the state constitution as any other citizen. Okay, so I am taking that to mean I do not have to pay my state taxes because I am not a full citizen. I mean that would just be wrong, to make someone pay taxes and not give them the same rights, sounds sort of like that taxation without representation thing from the history books.

You can read her entire article by clicking this link.

These things take time, though.  Most of the gays I’ve conferred with agree it IS odd that  chickens and other animals – um, the ones eventually slaughtered for food – were given more rights, while the GLBT community had some of theirs removed.  Great.  As long as the chickens on death row are comfy and cozy.  Anyway, it’s kindof a big deal here in California, though, and the gays are refusing to lay down and take it, and by that I mean passage of the amendment, not… oh nevermind.

In other news, I moved back to my cousin Yvonne and her husband Ed’s house in West Hills.  I am grateful they took me back in.  It’s lovely to get a reprieve from worrying about homelessness.  I have until December to get a place, so if you KNOW anyone…  Don’t forget, though:  I’m very powerful…


Day 84: A Very Brady Bike Ride

November 2, 2008

28 October 2008

I had a meeting today with my seminar small-group coach Troy.  It was an interview of sorts, in that he has a project on which I may be able to help, so this was a chance to learn more about his project and show him some of my mad skillz.  I gathered a few of my corporate samples to show him.  I’m always hesitant to show my corporate work because it is such a completely different animal than feature work.  All the same, most of my projects in that milieu are pretty slick and high-end.  In addition, the budgets I’ve had to work with as a producer in the non-broadcast/industrial video realm have been larger than what most independent producers have to work with.  I’m learning more and more through this Flash Forward class that I have more transferable experience and cachet than I was previously acknowledging, and I’m grateful for this self-discovery.

Yesterday, I had to relinquish Robert the BMW to one of Darrell’s friends who would be using him for a few days.  With that, today became a bike & subway kind of day because I was meeting Troy in North Hollywood.

I haven’t talked about this for a while, and it sounds pretty ridiculous, but my riding acumen on this bike comes in fits and spurts.  Some days I’m super-confident, zipping down the streets, up driveways, down curbs, past gawking tourists.  Other days I’m as wobbly as Jan Brady riding her bike without her glasses (even AFTER Marcia confronted her).  Today was a Jan Brady day…

Let’s start with my bike helmet, and the fact that it looks like a consolation prize won at an 8th grade nerd convention.  I’ve had it forever, and it’s time for an upgrade.  It’s hard to feel like my usual suave and sexy self (ha!) once I’ve stretched the kevlar straps across my face and locked them together.  Today’s helmets are more sleekly designed and fashionable, which are adjectives that are not typically associated with me.  Even so, I’m able to deal with the geek factor because I’ve known people whose lives have likely been saved by their helmets.  Let’s face it, brains smeared on the pavement = not sexy.

On my way to the subway station, I went over a HUGE curb that must’ve been about 9 inches high.  Please don’t ask how I’m able to easily assess – almost unconsciously – this specific unit of measure.  Anyway, after my back tire hit the street, I heard a thud, and noticed the under-seat satchel that holds the bike lock and a spare inner tube had snapped off and was on the ground.  Ugh.  Great.  Another item to carry around in my already over-stuffed backpack.  I’m grateful I heard the thud, though, otherwise I would have arrived at my meeting unable to lock up the bike.

The best moment, however, was when I was riding past a restaurant on Sunset Boulevard.  Since it was a sunny day – what else is new? – this fine, upscale establishment had some shade umbrellas up to protect the delicate patrons out on the patio.  The umbrellas were out in the middle of the sidewalk right in the riding path, AND they were angled at 45-degrees, so it’s not like I could very well duck under them.  I’m not painting a great picture here, I admit, but suffice it to say the damn umbrellas were in my way.  As I was delicately attempting to navigate between one of them on one side and a light post on the other, my shoulder BARELY grazed the umbrella and over it fell.  SOOOO embarrassing.  Truly.

I stopped, parked the bike, and walked back to reset the thing.  This particular umbrella had been protecting a table of 7 or 8 twenty-somethings, all of whom were now looking at me like I had just touched down from the planet Neptune. Their faces were contorted into various shapes of disbelief, repulsion and utter confusion.  It was as if they’d discovered their trust funds had been depleted, I’d keyed all of their cars and was now going to force them all to wear clothes from The Gap.  I could see the wheels turning as they soon looked to one another for what to do next.   I imagined the whispers: “OMG, do we call someone?” or “Don’t look directly at him.” or “Poor people are so clumsy.”

It was one of the more amusing anecdotes from my otherwise busy day.  Oh!  After my meeting with Troy was over, I stayed behind for a while at Panera and saw Tim Allen, the Home Improvement/Santa Clause movies dude.  He parked his car, plugged the meter and, I’m guessing, was just a-walking around NoHo tending to some errands.  So weird to see celebs in their natural habitat.  Perhaps, like me, you are wondering what the hell he’s been up to lately.  Here’s some info about that. There’s actually a Toy Story 3 in the works.  Who knew?

Otherwise, not much more to share today.  The Jan Brady incident had a lasting effect that carried me through the whole day…


Day 70: Stepping out

October 17, 2008

15 October 2008

Um… I just realized the title of my entry from yesterday, “Networking on the Boulevard” sounds a little shady, but please take my word that I haven’t reached the point of renting out my body parts just yet.   Before I get to that place, I’d likely pursue donating plasma or DNA first.  Believe it or not, a guy can make pretty good money donating his junk – $15,000 a year if you sign up to make a deposit 3-4 times a week for a year.  Dang!  That’s LA pricing, though.  In smaller markets, it’s probably only $8-10K.  I’ve had part-time jobs with much less appealing job responsibilities, believe me.  Of course those jobs didn’t come with the nagging question of whether or not I’ve sired a random gaggle of tots.

I spent a good chunk of the day at my current fave NoHo hangout, Panera Bread.  What can I say?  It’s bright, it’s roomy, it’s familiar, the people watching is entertaining without being totally distracting, and I can get 18 cups of coffee for the price of 1.  I gotta stretch my pennies as far as I can, know what I’m saying?

During my stay at Panera today, I observed one woman holding court at a corner table.  People were coming and going to her table… she’d have meetings with one or two or three of them.  Some would leave, more would arrive.  She’d be on her computer, she’d take a phone call.  It was intriguing.  It didn’t take terribly astute observation to discern she was producing a film and these were potential production team members.  It went on a while.  I was getting ready to leave and she was finally by herself.  She wasn’t watching her computer, she wasn’t on the phone, she wasn’t with someone… so I thought, “Why the heck not just go talk to her?”  I felt some apprehension because she was finally taking a moment to enjoy her food, and here I was about to encroach on her meal time.  Still, I decided this would be my bold move for the day.  If I were rebuffed, so be it.  It’s important for me to keep stepping out of my comfort zone.

For all intents and purposes, I walked up to her table, introduced myself and asked, “Are you producing a movie?”  Once she determined I wasn’t a complete loon, she asked me to sit down and we had an impromptu interview of sorts.  It was fun!  I told her I just moved here in August and she said, “Aaah, that’s why you’re still nice.”  Hmmm.  Her movie shoots in a month and she needs more help securing some of the in-kind donations for the production – airline tickets, catering, lodging for out-of-town actors… that sort of thing.  She said what she had to offer at this point in the production was an “Associate Producer” credit.  I told her I’d help in any way I could, so we exchanged cards and here’s hoping I hear from her.  We shall see!  I was pretty dang pleased with myself that I took the step and talked to her for a few.  I got a sense that made somewhat of an impression on her.

Afterwards I went into WeHo to meet Darrell for mail.  My California driver’s license came and it is darling, if I may say so myself.  The picture is pretty good!  I expect my voter registration and election packet will be arriving soon, too.  Darrell didn’t stay long because he had some more work to do at home.  We discussed the likelihood of me staying at Chez Darrell because he’s heading to his condo in Fort Lauderdale for two weeks.  He’s having his kitchen redone at the moment, so I’m not sure it’s completely functional or not, not that that’s a deal breaker.  Even if the hill takes me a half-hour to walk up with the bike (b/c downhill is a breeze, right?), it’s still only about one-sixth of the round-trip commuting time between WeHo and West Hills.  If it works out, I’ll be at his place for two weeks, then two weeks at Gary’s, which takes me to November 21.  After then… we’ll see.  I’ve started putting out the word that I’d love to find a room somewhere.  OR what would be really ideal is finding another house-sitting job, maybe one that’s a bit longer term… 3, 4, 5, 6 months.  Ya never know!  I should research that this weekend…