Thursday, July 16, 2009

I Know There Was Something

Apparently, in planning for a new life (new career, new love, new shoes) you are supposed to figure out what you are good at. Determine your passion and make a career of it. Determine the kind of man/relationship you want and pursue it. Figure out why you need yet another pair of black heels and buy them. On the surface, this all sounds like an excellent plan. Plus, Jimmy Choo is having another sale. So, I got out my trusty pencil (yes, it must be a pencil) and a piece of paper. I'm excellent at creating lists, and I thought this would come naturally.

What am I good at? What am I good at? Well, there was that…. Um… Oh, and that one time…oh, no, that didn't work….

Yeah, that session pretty much ended with me doodling a pair of shoes. Well, at least I'm focused.

So, I tried again. So far, this is my list:

  1. Good at observing how delectable David Duchovny looks in swimwear (past and present)
    Can I make a career out of being a perv? Hugh Hefner jokes aside, probably not. Although, perhaps I have an as yet undiscovered talent as a swimsuit designer? Of course, I also find him delightful in Hank Moody black t-shirt and Mulder suit, so men's fashion designer generally might also be a possibility. Or, maybe I am destined to become a sculptor, and could actually bill this time to research of the male form?
  2. Good at always looking on the downside of life
    I don't give myself props for much, but I have mad skills with this one. Plus, any time I can bastardize a song from "The Life of Brian" (or really any Monty Python), I'm doing to do it. This might mean I have to cross off elementary school teacher from my list of possible new careers. Well, that and the fact that children and I tend to look upon each other with mutual suspicion. But I think news anchor, stock analyst, real estate advisor and loan officer, given the overall economic and social climate, are all areas where my gift for bleak could be rewarded.
  3. Good at watching the same films or TV episodes repeatedly without tiring of them
    Maybe I can become an editor? You watch, re-watch, re-re-watch a lot with that job. Or some sort of CIA or FBI analyst where watching footage over and over again looking for clues is a key component. Or TV analyst? Or obsessed network executive?
  4. Good at getting irrationally angry at Emmy voters for epic failure despite not being involved in the shows
    Yeah, this has producer all over it. Or crazy person. Whichever. I've been called both.
  5. Good at shaking my fist at the universe
    Um… politician? Tele-Evangelist?

That's as far as I've gotten. So far, the only possible job I see that includes all of this is "unpaid blogger". Oh, wait… I've already got that job.

Success!! They were right. Put it down on paper, and your dreams really will come true.

This seems slightly less impressive than originally hoped.

Much like my love life.

Emmy Fail

Oh, Emmy voters how you continue to disappoint. Still, I will take my cue from the infinitely more mature David Duchovny and Natascha McElhone seen here in a clip from back in June (obviously, before they knew the outcome) at the Los Angeles Times Envelope Screening Series for Showtime's Californication.

David Duchovny and Natascha McElhone on Showtime and Californication from Kate Dating on Vimeo.

Friday, July 10, 2009


A Friday should be a beautiful thing. A Friday afternoon, in particular, holds such promise. On a Friday afternoon, you should be able to look over the horizon and feel like you have days and days to do with what you will. You can stay up late and not fear that upon waking, you'll have to go to work. In short, Friday should just be joy.

You know what things don't indicate a joyful Friday?

  1. You should not find out that your pilot project got rejected thus trapping you forever in a job that no longer rings your bell (Hell, I can't find the bell. Was there a bell?)
  2. You should not then get an assignment at bell-less job that you should never have and only got because everyone else had the good sense to be on vacation and entirely unreachable.
  3. You should not then finally find a couple of minutes to check in with Facebook looking for solace only to be cruelly taunted by "People You Might Know" suggestions. Oh, and that suggestion shouldn't be The EX, but what it really shouldn't be is your Ex's new wife using a profile photo where she is holding their new baby.



Wednesday, July 08, 2009

While We're Waiting

It's true that my portable, 2-dimensional visualization device (or vision board) is still blank. Although I do appreciate the many comments and emails with suggestions.

But I hate a blank page.

So, instead of staring at a blank page, I bring you another short clip from the Los Angeles Times Envelope Screening Series Panel for Californication which was held in June. Please enjoy watching Natascha McElhone and David Duchovny bantering about love on Californication.

Can't wait for Season 3 to start.

(as usual, you can pop it out to full size with the vimeo controls).

Natascha McElhone and David Duchovny Banter About Love on Californication from Kate Dating on Vimeo.

Monday, July 06, 2009

The Board

Two of my friends are creating vision boards. Scratch that. One of my friends is creating a vision board, the other one, Pen, is creating a portable, 2-dimensional visualization tool. Pen rejects The Secret even though she recognizes the possible superficial overlap of her current theories—thus, the terminology becomes important.

For those of you who are now scratching your heads in confusion—you are not alone. From what I understand, the board includes pictures, notes, articles, etc that represent things you need and want for each aspect of your life. Apparently, for The Secret followers, this helps you articulate what you want, gives you an idea of the path to achieve it, and puts it out into the universe. I'm not exactly sure what the universe does with it. For me, the universe would crumple it up into a little ball, spit on it and then stomp on it. I sincerely hope my friend has better luck.

For the non-Secret devotees, the visualization board serves as not only a way to articulate what you want and need, but, recognizing that the universe is at best an indifferent bastard, it also acts as a reminder—it's a goal board… a motivational tool…some sort of slightly non-aggressive accountability tool.

In other words, I think they are supposed to do the same thing.

I have to tell you: I'm completely fascinated by the idea. Sure, I have a slight concern that my visualization tool will end up looking like some sort of deranged George Clooney altar, but if it looks like it might be working for either one of them in any way, I'm in. Beyond the success or failure rate of these boards, I think part of my fascination is focused on these practitioners of the dark arts of hopefulness and planning. These women couldn't be more different, and yet they are both whole-heartedly embracing this technique.

Oh, and one other thing they are embracing: the idea that I too should join their ranks and start cutting up some magazines.


I did read that article about a woman who visualized a particular number (I don't remember what it was. Let's say it was 127 million). She put it on paper and put the paper under her pillow. She meditated on it. She thought about it all the time. And then she won $127 million in the lottery. It's a good story. I like this story. But let's face it, if obsessing over something made it a reality, we all know my life would look a hell of a lot different right now.

My natural proclivity to disparage all signs of positivity is not my only issue… it's not even the biggest issue. No, my primary issue remains my inability to answer the simple question, "What do you want?"

There's a certain amusement factor inherent in my inability to answer this question. Why? I used to ask this question of The Ex all the time when we were faced with complicated relationship conundrums. Invariably, he'd respond with "Why does it rest with me?" To which I always replied, "Because I know what I want." How perverse is it that I can no longer even begin to answer this question? I'm now so divorced from myself that I have no idea.

My vision board is empty.

Pen, being a Life Coach, took a pragmatic approach and present me with some completely reasonable questions. It went something like this:

Pen: "Do you want a house? Everyone in LA wants a house."

Kate: "Eh"

Pen: "Eh, is not an answer. Eh, is more of an 'I'm secretly reading Twitter and not pay attention to you because I'm in avoidance mode."

Kate: "Completely untrue" [closing out of Twitter] "Fine. The theory of a house is fine. But I have neither the inclination nor the skill to actually care for one. I also do not appear to have unlimited funds to hire staff to do it for me. Also, I'd like to point out that, technically, the bank would own the house."

Pen: "What about travel? You used to travel."

Kate: "Has teleportation been invented yet?"

Pen: "Not to my knowledge."

Kate: "Probably going to nix travel then."

Pen (admittedly laughing at this point): "Fame?"

Kate: "Ha! Yes. But Fame costs. And right here is where you start paying. In sweat."

Pen: "A shocking no!"

Kate: "Yes, it's what every hermit secretly craves—to be followed around by people with cameras and access to the internet."

Pen: "Scratch that one off. How about a new job?"

Kate: "Now we're talking!"

Pen: "What would you like to do if you could have any job in the world?"

Kate: "No idea."

Pen: "Well, your portable 2-dimensional visualization tool can't just be full of photos of George Clooney."

Kate: "Why not?"

Pen: "Because dating him is a completely unrealistic goal."

Kate: "So is owning a house in LA, but that made the list."

And then she gave me what looked suspiciously like the stink eye last seen on my high school gym teacher.

Kate: "What?"

For nearly 30 minutes I thought about what I would really want (that was also something I could work towards and achieve) and the board is still empty. I do the job I do because I'm good at it, and it pays well. I have obligations. I have responsibilities and no desire to take on more. I have commitments. These things I understand. But "want"? "Want" I'm not good at. "Want" is a specimen I circle cautiously and with great suspicion.

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Mason Tateman

Sigh. I can't win.

I was leaving work today, rejoicing in the bliss of being able to leave a breathtaking hour early, when I saw a man walking into the building who seemed to be attractive. I say "seemed" because I didn't really look at him directly. It was more a surreptitious scan—you know, the scan that women perfect and men can't get down to save their lives.

Anyway, scan completed, I registered a couple of things: 1) the man was attractive, 2) he was my type, and 3) I should try to get his attention. I know—that last one is surprising. But I've been working on that whole "life plan" thing with coach Pen, and apparently, my total and complete lack of progress on the dating front can be somewhat related to my lack of action plan. [I pointed out that it was also due to lack of proper motivation, an overwhelming workload and laziness, but she appears to be having none of that.]

The problem was that by the time I processed all of this, the man who was walking toward me was, in fact, right next to me and within seconds would pass me. So, I did a very subtle double take in the hopes that he would see my blinding smile out of his peripheral vision. Well, subtle in that I nearly turned my body entirely around in order to accomplish it, but boy did I smile.

I wasn't entirely certain why the guy suddenly looked like he was braced for impact. I mean, I didn't even get close to him. I made no sudden lunging movements, and unless the smile was completely maniacal (rather than entirely appropriately perky), I think I was projecting "inviting" rather than "crazy". In the split second I had to ponder his reaction, my eyes flicked up to his face again.

Yeah, he might have been a fairly well-known actor. His name might rhyme with Mason Tateman. My entirely subtle double take may have been taken for "crazed fan reaction" rather than "entirely out of whack female flirting technique".

What do you do in this situation? It's not like I could yell, "No, I'm not a fan!" I mean, that just sounds wrong. Plus, it's sort of a lie. I do like his work; I just wouldn't approach him for an autograph. Also, running back to catch up to him in order to explain that I didn't even recognize him could also be taken the wrong way. You never know which famous person is going to find that charming and which one will take that as binge-worthy blow to their self-esteem.

[As a side note, can we finally get that electronic celeb board tracker in place? Maybe next to the name, it could give you clues to each day's preferences like "wants to be recognized", "on the edge", "likes to date non-industry types", "approach with caution", "bring cocaine" and "pretend like you've never heard of him". Could really be helpful.]

So, I did what I always do: I kept walking while carrying on a highly entertaining inner dialogue about whether or not the guy I just passed was indeed Mason Tateman. Hilarious. Seriously, if only I could market my confusion, I'd make a fortune.

What would you have done?