jc blog - tales of a modern-day nomadic hunter-gatherer

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2005-04-10-1042Z

Note to self: no more Casa de Bandini killer 'ritas on an empty stomach. Sure, I came back to Rosarito with such a nice buzz I didn't mind the sardine-can taxi ride at all, but then I just crashed for 8 hours or so and woke up dehydrated.

OK, let's back up... got 2 or so hours of sleep yesterday morning and headed towards San Diego about 10:30... taxi after taxi, almost completely empty, passed me by. I must really look like shit, I was thinking. No wonder that security guard was so sure I was there to steal something that he just went looking for something out of place and decided to blame it on me.

But then, along came a bus: a nice bus too, like a Greyhound, though a little dated... but I asked him the price to Tijuana Centro, and he said 8 pesos! 3 less than a taxi, for a comfortable bus ride! Duh, let me think that over, dude! Hell, I jumped on, gave him a 10-peso piece and gave him back the 2-peso change he handed me. Crossed the line with no hassle today, bought my Day Tripper, went to America Plaza then to the post office on Broadway (at Horton Plaza) and sent my appeal form to the SSA with delivery confirmation. Which was half of my scheduled business of the day done.

I had come here to meet someone about a custom sewing job, the inflatable clothing I've probably mentioned before. In a nutshell: dead air space is a good insulator. Having clothing that can hold air, at least for a while, might eliminate the need for me to wear several layers of clothing, because when it gets cold or rainy I can just inflate it. It might also serve as a sleeping bag in that respect. Anyway, I advertised on Craigslist for someone with kite-sewing skills, because the ripstop fabric used has the characteristics I need. I got an answer from a lady whose mother-in-law, she says, is an expert in that... but the mother-in-law doesn't use email, so I had to call. I called from the Old Town terminal, but the lady wasn't home. Her daughter told me to call the next morning, and I said I might... anyway, I had been kind of planning for a C de B margarita anyway, so walked over and sat down at the first table on the far side of the fountain, same as last time about a year ago. No Carlos, though. I sat there and started reading V. by Thomas Pynchon, which I had picked up at the Rosarito Red Cross thrift store a few days ago.

After about a half hour, I asked Daniel, a server who had passed by once or twice before, if there was no service to these tables; he apologized, took my order, and brought me my large margarita, which is almost enough to take a bath in. He also kept me well-stocked with chips and salsa all the time I was there, which kept my stomach full but of course didn't help me handle the alcohol -- that always, for me at least, requires meat. And the food may be good there but the prices are too steep. After about half the 'rita was finished, I was too blitzed to read, so just sat there peoplewatching for another hour or so. I was thinking the guy at the table in front of me was Hugo Weaving, aka Agent Smith of The Matrix, but after asking him about the plate he ordered, shrimp with pineapple served in a hollowed-out half pineapple, decided that he really didn't look or sound all that much like him. But who knows? Maybe it was. Not that I was going to ask for his autograph, or anything, I don't give a shit about that... but would probably have thanked him for doing such a great job with that character. Of course I saw him in LOTR too, in which he was also excellent, but Matrix was such an eye-opener for me, that's what I'll always associate him with.

I haven't been keeping up my booklist, have I? Well, before I left Deming, I read some more Daniel Quinn stuff, Providence and Beyond Civilization, both of which I heartily recommend, and Anne Tyler's Back When We Were Grownups, which would possibly be usable as tinder if you kept it dry. Sometime after she wrote The Accidental Tourist, which was very good, she must have gotten so clever that my primitive cerebrum, as Agent Smith would say, can no longer comprehend what is the purpose of all those words. There were a few gems, to be sure, but mining them out of all that cold gray rock was not worth the effort.

There were some other books I think but can't remember at the moment. I'm still keeping my eyes peeled for Gravity's Rainbow but was pleasantly surprised to find V. the other day, so I'm plowing through it... like most Pynchon stuff, it's not easy reading but in this case he makes up for it by being laugh-out-loud funny.

I got my customer's program ported to the Palm via midp4palm. He paid me, but he's not completely happy with it. For one thing, the text and images show up on the right side of the screen, which is a known bug in its implementation of the Form class, and being MIDP 1.0 has no Item positioning. I'm hoping Palm One's JVM will solve the problem on his Tungsten at least; the Clié users will have to live with it. Yes, I could probably use a Canvas and implement all the text wrapping and scrolling myself, but why? Shoot, I'd rather take another approach altogether. Anyway, I'm thinking of taking a rest from paid jobs and working on my postFORTH for a while. [comment]

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