Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Feeling Torn

Every time I think that my decision to move home is easy, I go on a crying jag and feel like I've lost my dang mind.

I feel some comfort in knowing that both of my sisters have either gone through or are going through something similar. I remember when my older sister moved away from NYC, she had similar reasons to the ones I have for leaving L.A. High cost of living, people are insane, need to financially and emotionally recover, yada yada. My other sister is experiencing some similar emotions- saying goodbye to a chapter of her life that's been rich with good memories, venturing into unknown territory, feeling a little bit like she's taking a step backward by moving back home.

Me too.

I constantly feel like I'm torn between two different places, two ideals, two feuding gangs. The Crips are on one side and the Bloods are on the other, and I'm not wearing the right color for either one.

I know that going home is where I am supposed to go. Most of the time, I even miss home. Being homesick doesn't make me less scared though. The thing is, despite the fear and angst, I do (sometimes) get excited about going home- I get excited when I remember that hot sticky feeling at the back of my legs and in between my shoulder blades that only comes with Memphis summers. I get excited about listening to music that's full of soul, and people asking me how I'm doing not because they want to use me and run me over but because they really do care. I get excited about driving all the way out to Jerry's Sno Cones for frozen goodness that cost a dollar, and drinking coffee with my parents on the back porch.

But I also get so sad.

I get sad that I won't see my apartment manager anymore. His name is Steve. I usually go down to his office on Saturdays and shoot the bull with him about life. He's always been nice to me. I get sad when I think about not being able to drive down streets that are lined with palm trees. I get sad that Mr. Young won't be my haircut guy and I won't see the staff at Cabo Cantina anymore. I get really sad when I think about not being able to see my closest friend out here whenever I want. We've spent so many hours recording music and laughing our heads off and watching Michael Jackson videos on Youtube. I've built my own home here, and now I sort of feel like I am abandoning it. It's like watching the last episode of a classic TV series or finishing a good book. I remember when I was about 10 or so, I read "Cheaper by the Dozen," and I LOVED that book, and at the end, the dad died, and I cried and cried and cried. I haven't changed one bit.

I keep having sporadic meltdowns.

Despite this grappling feeling of wanting to stay (a little), there are signs pointing other places. I'm very into "signs." It might make me sound like some loony tune Tammy Fae Baker, but I can't help it. When I see signs, I pay attention.

I was sitting in church on Sunday and I got this sudden urge to jump up and leave. Actually, it wasn't that sudden at all. It was sort of this brooding, itching feeling, like the need to escape had been building up inside of me for years, and if I didn't get out of there in about five minutes, I'd scream.

I had read an article in The Los Angeles Times only a few days prior about some couple at my church who'd built a 40,000 square foot house in Bel Air for $68 million and they made this really big deal about how they built their pseudo-Versailles for "worship" purposes. I don't know why I got so irritated by this, because I don't even KNOW the people, and it's none of my business, but I sort of wanted to take that newspaper and wipe my butt with it, because I knew it was a crock of crap. I got sort of burned out on all of the phony baloney people at my church. The excessive wealth and Gatsby-style "worship" services and people rolling up in their Rolls Royce's for absolutely nothing. It just seemed so phony to me.

This is where I start to sound a little bit like Sylvia Plath going on and on about how everyone is dying. Bear with me.

On Sunday, it really got to me. This big fat cow in a circus tent/moo moo got up in the pulpit and started READING off prayers. If there's one thing that irritates me, it's written-down prayers. I'm not an authority on theology, but I'm pretty sure that God doesn't expect you to give a public speech when you ask Him to help you out. I also don't think he requires you to talk to like a medieval warrior. The moo moo cow lady kept going ON AND ON AND ON with her Times New Roman font "prayer," full of "thous" and "thees," and all I could think about was that $68 million dollar house and this lady praying like she was a knight.

Every time that woman gets up in the pulpit, I want to cold cock her. She's got this long stringy Mama Cass hair and she always wears plastic headbands. Have headbands EVER been in style? Anyway, she makes an announcement for some punk kid to come up on stage (a punk kid with a hyphenated name. Come on, girl. Feminism went out of style in the 80's) because he just got her PhD. So. The punk gets up there and begins to openly demasculate her husband, saying that HE only has a MASTER'S and SHE has a DOCTORATE and SHE makes him call HER "Dr. Wife." It was disgusting. I don't know what the deal was. I just couldn't take her lame jokes and watching her make fun of her husband. The whole thing was a big phony crock of crap, and I just couldn't take it.

It's weird. I never cared about hyphenated names. I actually thought for a while that maybe it was a good idea. But then I started thinking about how it's sort of a real big "F YOU" to the person you marry, and it changed my mind about it, and I decided that hyphenating was sort of lame.

I couldn't take it anymore. I just couldn't take it.

So I left.

I got in my car and drove to my old church. The whole time I was thinking that I was probably too late to catch the sermon, but I figured that making an attempt was better than going home and eating a whole carton of Chunky Monkey. So, I drove there, and I snuck in the back door like a hooker in a cathedral. I didn't recognize the guy who was preaching. He started talking about things that made a lot of sense though. He said,

"Don't become so stubborn on doing things the way YOU want to do them that God has to force you to surrender to His Will."

To a lot of people, that could probably sound totally weird, but to me, it made complete sense.

"Maybe you came out to this city because you had a voice. You had a voice and a vision to live here, and you came out here only to find that nobody heard you, and you were defeated. You got lost under all of the madness of this city, and now you're moving home, and you feel like you're moving backwards."

I started to cry.

"Abigail had to remind David that he defeated Goliath because of his FAITH. Because he had faith, God was able to empower him to do impossible things."

I sat there in the back and cried my head off.

It all made sense.

When I went to see my grandparents in April, I felt like I was clinging onto a little thread of hope so desperately, and less than two months later, I'm back on the L.A. battlefield, feeling completely empty and defeated, but also desperately wanting to cling to a dream that is clearly ending and SUPPOSED to end.

Maybe it takes having a crap job and a church full of phony rich people and no real friends and a sense of defeat to surrender.

It's like at home, I feel like people really care. People see my value. In L.A., I forget about that stuff. I always feel lost in the shuffle and alone. I only have one friend that I'm sad to leave.

A few days ago, I worked with a very well renown surgeon that I thought was going to be a big a-hole. He got in my boss' face and said, "You know, you have a really bad habit of asking me questions and answering them for me. It's incredibly rude. I'm losing a lot of money by being in your office today, and it'd be great if you would just act like a professional and stop wasting my time. So, how's it going to be? Are you going to act like a professional and let me answer questions after you ask them, or are you going to continue to be rude and waste my time?" and I sort of wanted to jump out of my chair and smack his butt like a pro athlete after a victorious win. Of course, I just sat there, smiling to myself.

Anyway, I worked with the guy all day, and right before the hard-ass surgeon left the office, he told my boss, "Give Rachel a raise. She's great. I'm serious." For the first time in forever, I remembered my value at work. He saw that I was worth something. I don't want to make my self esteem dependent on other people, but sometimes you forget that you have any value when people are always telling you how much you do wrong and never tell you what you do right.

My time here is drawing to a close, and there's a sadness and excitement in my heart that are wrestling around like there's no solid ground to stand on.

I went to the bar in Hollywood on Saturday where they filmed "Swingers." On Sunday, I watched a movie that was filmed down the street from my house. I always get a little bit excited knowing that this is "my town." But at the same time, L.A. isn't my town at all. I don't have a town at all. I kind of feel like a hermit crab who keeps packing up his house on his back and trying to find a place to call home. Maybe that doesn't exist. But I'm going to keep on looking.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Rest in Peace, MJ.

The countdown to quitting feels like it's taking decades. Every day is like driving to death row, knowing my head will be shoved into a guillotine. I have a hard time even getting excited that every day is one day closer to freedom when I know that I still have to endure the day at hand.

There are things about this town that I'll miss. For instance, I just walked outside of my office, saw a Tequila food truck, got a free taco, shirt, shot glass, and bottle of water, and booty danced to Michael Jackson while wearing business casual for a promotional commercial. MJ's one year anniversary of passing is tomorrow, so a lot of people are playing his jams this weekend. Score!

Dealing with my job and the traffic and the worst people I've ever met and the high cost of living and the liberal propaganda and the sense of entitlement and the entire soul-sick culture of this place has just taken the glamor out of it for me.

My boss often mentions how "sophisticated" she is, and I am using quotes because I am directly QUOTING her, as you might guess. I am also emphasizing this because when you read on about her behavior, sophistication might be lower than the last thing on the list of adjectives you imagine as you visualize her constant MO.

She thinks she's super "sophisticated" because she has a big East Coast chip on her shoulder. I'd love to say, "Lady, not only is Los Angeles notorious for being full of FRUIT CAKES, but a lot of people associate women from Boston with being loud-mouthed yankee broads who drink beer right out of the bottle and pick their wedgies in public." Which is true. But of course, I don't say it. I just sit there and let her sunbathe in her ignorance and imagine myself on a beach in Mexico like that guy from "Shawshank Redemption."

I always laugh to myself a little when she brags about just how sophisticated she is while she sits in her dusty little moth-eaten upholstered chair with her legs spread wide open like she's trying to keep the flies away. I'm telling you. It's like she's ready for somebody to just walk right up and go spelunking in her crotch-cave of death. If I ever bear daughters, the first thing I'll teach them is to KEEP THEIR DANG LEGS CLOSED. Ugh. It's so vulgar. I know I'm not exactly a debutante, but I also know not to be advertising my snatch all over town for everyone in the world to see. It's completely appalling.

As her legs are open at a 180 degree angle, she begins to pick flakes of dead skin off the heels of her feet and then flicks them on the floor. There's a little pile of foot flakes on the floor right under her crusty gray heels. Oddly enough, despite the overall look of her feet and general disheveled appearance, her toenails always look nice. The most sophisticated thing about her is that right after she's finished peeling her heel skin off like she's skinning a dang tuna, she begins picking her teeth. Now mind you, she always has all kind of plaque and beige colored build up around all of her jagged teeth, but right after she's picked all of the 70 year old skin off her cracking heels, she uses the same bit-down nails to begin scraping plaque off her teeth. Unbelievable.

Let's discuss some further sophistication. We have a proper phone-to-phone office transfer system, where if someone has a question in office 1, they can dial office 4 and ask them a question like a normal, middle class American person. Ooooooh, not in my office. Attila the Boss is always yelling and screaming from the back of the office to the waiting room about stupid, trivial, mindless monkey shit. It drives me crazy. "DID YOU ORDER THE STATIONERY?!" "WHY WON'T MY OUTLOOK WORK?!" "I DON'T UNDUH-STAND THIS!" like we know what the crap she is even talking about.

I wasn't raised like that. I just wasn't raised where everyone was yelling and screaming and talking on top of each other like everyone is doing an auditory dog pile on top of everyone else's voice. Ugh. AND, she's a compulsive interrupter. When a client doesn't understand a question, she starts talking louder and louder and LOUDER and slower and SLOWER like the person is some kind of effing retard. She never changes the content of her sentences to make things more clear. She just talks louder and slower and shakes her liver-spotted, nail bitten, plaque and foot-flake crusty finger in the person's face and breaths her halitosis that's bubbling from her stomach all over the office until everyone feels like they will faint. I've never seen anything like it.

The way she contorts her face like she's being exorcised is completely unreal. It's like her face is claymation. She can contort it and make it look so disgusted and enraged that you sort of feel like a dog who has just crapped on the floor. You know you're about to get your face rubbed in it. She began verbally assaulting my client today, over and over and over again, yelling at him for the same EFFING thing, and as soon as she left the room, he looked me like he'd just had the soul sucked out of him, and he quietly and blankly said,

"She is such a bitch."

And I just gave him that understanding, old soul, Paula Deen look.

"The Devil Wears Prada" is like "Sesame Street" compared to where I work.

Let's keep talking Los Angeles-style sophistication. We've hired a new girl that is constantly on my case about what I eat. Let me tell you that the new girl weighs more than my first boyfriend and is about 15 inches shorter than him. I say this not to pick on her, but because she decided that it was appropriate to tell me her exact height and weight the first day I ever met her.

People who think they know everything and openly judge you about something when its quite VISIBLE that they have no authority to do so really get on my nerves. So, this new moose is sitting around, with her fingers always in her mouth, constantly biting her nails off and spitting them on the floor, also with her legs spread wide open like she's keeping the flies away (twins?), and popping her knuckles ALL THE TIME ---always popping those knuckles---CONSTANTLY criticizes me and what I eat. She barrels down the hallway like a bull moose, slumps her robust figure into my office chair, leaving vibrations like the aftershock of a standard Baja Peninsula earthquake, and then begins to RUN HER MOUTH about why my eating a microwave Healthy Choice meal is incredibly unhealthy and I should only shop at Whole Foods. She also criticizes my hair, clothes, and accessories, telling me that I should only buy Michael Kors and should only get haircuts from her hair person. How does a big, frumpy, knuckle-popping moose feel like she is an authority on what I should eat, wear, and look like? It doesn't make any sense, and it's down right obnoxious and rude. If I hear Michael Kors one more time, I might punt kick her butt into the middle of Wilshire Blvd.

The moose is also obsessed with trying to be "California," so she's always talking about "going green" and recycling. She also carries around this big canvas bag that says "I USED TO BE A PLASTIC BOTTLE" on the side of it in all caps. Irritates the crap out of me. Not because I boycott environmentally friendly attempts (I actually recycle), but I get irritated with people who try to be something they aren't. She's from some po-dunk Southern town and she has not only lost her accent and tries VERY HARD to sound "California," but she also attempts to talk about whatever she thinks will make her sound more "L.A.," like stupid effing recycling and stupid Michael Kors.

During the moose's first day of work, she told me that she bleaches her man-beard. She has facial hair and decided it was appropriate to tell me how she maintains it. She also told me that she wants to be a Disney Princess and loves Avatar.

I don't know exactly where I fit in these days. In fact, I really don't fit in anywhere, and I'm OK with that. But there's a difference between feeling like you have no place and realizing that everyone else would be better off if you weren't in the middle of it.

All I can think now is: let them all have each other. Let all of the hippies and yogies and tree huggers and knuckle poppers and "sophisticated" women with their wide-spread legs and heel flakes and hacking and coughing and putrid breath HAVE EACH OTHER.

Last week, I had a traveling experience that would probably be the equivalent to "Home Alone" and "Trains, Planes, & Automobiles" having a baby. I got bumped and was delayed and took planes and SUV's and teleporters all over God's green earth to visit my grandmother for her birthday. I'd get into all of the details of the trip, like meeting wonderful airport friends and having coffee with them and discussing interesting topics regarding hellacious work situations and job search strategies, but the most memorable part of the travel experience was watching a Delta employee at the ticket counter in Memphis with "the look" on her face.

THE LOOK is the one I get the second I pull into the parking lot of my work and I see my boss' luxury car, knowing that I wont even have five seconds of peace in the morning to put my lunch in the fridge or use the bathroom after my hour long commute. As soon as Attila the Boss hears the back door open, she comes flying down the hall like some levitating, possessed demonic presence, blowing her moldy jack-o-lantern breath in my face and screaming at me about what I need to do RIGHT NOW. No time to use the restroom, or God forbid, put away my Yoplait Yogurt.

The employee at the Delta ticket counter had her boss hovering all over her like an effing OCD control-freak helicopter, and she had that look on her face. I watched her roll her eyes and touch her forehead like she was using every bit of spirit she had to keep from smacking her boss in the face. I know the look. I know the feeling.

Yesterday, the lady in my office was a complete nut job, and right when I think the L.A. people that I deal with couldn't get any crazier, she shows me her boob. Well, it was really an absence of a boob. It was like her boob was invited to the chest party, and RSVPed, "I'm sorry, the right boot cannot attend."

This lady, for whatever reason, wanted to "prove" to me that she had a mastectomy. Her shirt flew up so fast I sort of thought it was a mirage. I turned my head in the other direction as fast as I could and thought to myself, "Did that just happen?"

When I was flying back from Memphis to LAX, I sat next to some dewy eyed 22 year old fresh off the boat from New Albany, Mississippi. She lives in L.A. and works for a talent agency and just loooooves it. She kept flipping her hair around and she kept blinking her long black eyelashes real slow like every second she was thinking about working for William Morris, she might just start singing, she was so happy. I remember the comment of a fellow jaded Los Angelian a few years ago when I too had that blissful look of L.A.-flavored virginity. He talked about how this city will chew you up and spit you out. And he was right.

I sure hope that when I move home, I can remember the good things about this town, like booty dancing in front of a tequila truck to Michael Jackson, and for once, not think about knuckle popping, wide-spread legs, and moldly jack-o-lantern breath.

Friday, June 11, 2010


About a week after my purse got stolen at work, I got an email from a guy who said he found all of my credit cards scattered across a parking lot in Hollywood. He said he googled me and found my work email address. At least now I know I didn't hallucinate. My purse, indeed, was snatched from under my desk while I was in my boss' office. Laaawd, hep me.

In between dealing with all of the crap that comes with having your purse stolen, half the staff quit at work, so I'm doing the jobs of multiple people and still make the equivalent to what I made as a first year teacher in Memphis. I am starting to think that I should try my hand at cleaning lady jobs. Then I could see the physical results of my work and I wouldn't have to pay taxes. I also have extensive cleaning lady experience. Let me explain.

I remember when I taught a few years ago in Memphis, we worked with a bunch of OCD kids who had a myriad of emotional and psychological issues, and because we were some sort of nomadic, traveling school without a real building, we wound up having school at a church building in the middle of po-dunk NOWHERE Tennessee where people were always wearing "Kix 106" shirts splattered with dirt and paint and everyone smelled like fried catfish and crickets. Well, anyway, one day the director of the school asked me if I would help her scrub the racquetball room down with clorox because the kids just couldn't stand the sight of black smudges on the walls because they were all OCD. So there I was, with a decent education, fresh out of college and the only one of my friends who wasn't married, thinking "FML" the whole time I scrubbed boogers and racquetball mank off the walls of a hillbilly church.

The job after that, I worked as a personal assistant/slave for a humongous, sweating, foul-smelling charismatic woman who SHIT THE BED in her sleep and asked me if I would clean her diarrhea sheets for her. I almost fainted the morning I walked into her house. It smelled so foul that even a corpse would have puked. That was my last day.

I often tell people that I currently work in a haunted house. The combination of CERTAIN people around here openly flagellating in my tiny, dingy, peach walled office with poor ventilation, this person having the breath of an open sewer, and cockroaches scrambling around all over our kitchen, I just don't know how else to describe it. It's a haunted house. A couple of weeks ago, my boss asked me to take everything out of the kitchen cabinets and put it all in boxes because the exterminator was coming to "take care of" the cockroach problem. It is during moments like these, when I am being talked down to like I'm freaking Rainman and asked to do disgusting jobs like remove 1970's tupperware from asbestos coated cabinets, that I feel like going to graduate school was an enormous waste of time and money. Every time somebody asks me to do some menial, bullshit, waste of my time task, I want to scream. The thing is, I don't really mind doing stupid stuff like reorganizing or cleaning. The task itself doesn't piss me off. I can do it all day long if I'm asked to do it with respect... But if I'm asked to do something as a way of being patronized, it sort of makes me want to punch somebody. Oh, and P.S. The cockroach problem still isn't resolved. I made my client a cup of coffee the week afterwards, and I handed it to him and said, "Would you like anything in your coffee?" and he said, "There is already something in my coffee." and he pushed the cup away and I saw a dead cockroach in his cup, floating upside down. FML.

So, back to the purse caper. I drove down to the hood to fill out a police report that I knew would do me no good, and a guy came in who'd been stabbed by his wife about 30 times. They made him take off his shirt and they took pictures of him as he stood there, all cut up like some emo rocker. A few minutes later, some big hunky Hollywood actor looking jerk came in and had to file a report because his girl friend and her new boyfriend stole his sports car. That was sort of interesting. Then an Asian lady with a baby strapped to her chest walked in and filed some papers about identity theft. It sort of made me want to hang out there all day. The officer who was helping me gave me some big long speech about how I should never carry checks or a debit card and told me he hates L.A. and his family is from Florida and he's been a cop since before I was born and I should get the hell out while I can. And the whole time he was talking to me, he spoke in these abrupt, monotone sentences, and I sort of felt like he was faking it, like he was on Dragnet in the 1960's and he did such a good job at acting like a cop that LAPD felt bad for him and decided to let him sit at the desk and fill out paperwork on stolen purses.

I got really paranoid about the purse thing since my photo ID with my address was in there, so I got my locks changed and got the remotes changed on my car. I know that most purse snatchers aren't also into home break ins and grand theft auto, but a single white girl gotta watch her back. So. Let's talk about the car place. I was at Car Max, and I was the only white girl there, and none of the men would stand up and let me sit in their seats because they were all trash. And, of course, when I eventually got a seat, it was right in front of a 100 year old disgusting man with a TRAKE and a little kazoo looking thing sticking through his neck hole where he coughed and hacked big yellow loogies through it FOR HOURS. I just about puked. I wanted to sit outside, but I forgot to put a shirt on that morning, and was only wearing my hoodie, and I was so effin hot sitting in the sun with that hoodie on that I just decided to sit there and let old Trakey Mc Trakerton blow his kazoo loogies at me all day long.

I get so burned out. I get burned out for multiple reasons. I love living by myself, but it also sucks, because I feel like I can't ever completely let my guard down. I have to take care of EVERYTHING by myself. I can handle it, and I don't mind it so much, but it makes me tired.

The week before the great purse caper of 2010, I had to go the doctor to get my annual physical, but I couldn't go the gyno because the closest gyno who approved by my bull crap insurance is an hour away, so I went to a general practitioner instead. I got to the doctor's office and all of the signs were written in Spanish and I was the only white person around and nobody spoke English. I waited for an hour. I finally got called in. When I went to put the gown on, I laid down on the table, and some old Asian doctor walked in who spoke very limited English, and he started beating on my stomach like it was some sort of tribal drum, after I told him that I wasn't active and there was no way in hell that I had a baby in there. I said, "What are you DOING?!" and he just kept beating away, smacking me on my stomach. Maybe he was trying to hear if it was hollow. There weren't even stirrups or anything. I just sprawled out on the table like a starfish, completely humiliated and being beat to death and afraid that I was about to be sacrificed to the pap-smear gods. This guy also swore up and down that I had diabetes and said that I needed a blood test. The problem is that they dont do blood tests at this make-shift, fantasy doctor's office. So he gave me a list of blood test centers in Compton and Inglewood and said to go there. I'll risk it. If I have diabetes, I'll just lay off the Lucky Charms. My options are to have diabetes and risk it until I get some decent insurance or get shot in a drive by in Compton attempting to get a blood test.

Despite all of the crap that happens, and the fact that my ears CRINGE every time my boss pronounces words like a total fruit cake (examples: she says fortune like four-TOON, liaison like lee-ay-ZON, and niche like NEESH) and flips out if I call my cell phone a "phone" instead of a "telephone" or I say I have to take an "exam" instead of an "examination" and there are cockroaches everywhere and she yelled at me because I threw away her black banana that had hairy gray mold growing all over it and I got the worst physical of my life and my purse got snatched, good things happen, too.

For example, I got bumped in Dallas over Memorial Day weekend and I met a fantastic old Asian guy named Eddie, who I sat next to on the airplane going back to Memphis. He was like Mr. Miyagi. When he talked, it's like I could hear wind flutes and everything sort of had a pumpkin/amber color and time stopped. He said to me, "You look worried." and I said, "Yeah. I'm always worried. I'm always anxious." and he said, "You must let the Holy Spirit control your worry. You must keep your faith in God. He is the one who will take care of you. You call on him 24 hours a day." and I started to cry. Right there on the airplane. Then he told me I needed to drink red wine and eat dark chocolate because of the anti oxidants or something. Then he said, "My father is turning 90 years old. He say the secret to long life is to not worry. To be happy where you are right now." Old Eddie and I wound up talking the whole flight and he even sat with me at the gate when I got to Memphis and was waiting on my flight to LAX. He lives in New Orleans. His dad lives in Long Beach and he sent me an email a couple of days ago inviting me to his dad's 90th birthday party in Long Beach. I love airplane friends.

Another good thing is that my boyfriend came to visit last week, and I haven't felt so relaxed and comfortable ever. It was so nice to be around somebody who came from where I came from and had my same values and knew what I was talking about. I dont know how to explain it. I randomly met some girl at a bar last week, and when I shook her hand and said, "It's nice to meet you," she said, "Ooooh my gaaaawd. Are you from f-cking ALABAMA?!" and I said, "I'm from Tennessee. But you must be from here, because you clearly have no manners." My boyfriend "got" it. I don't know how to explain it. He just gets it.

We went to The Tonight Show via a hook up of my writer friend, and it occurred to me that I've seen Jay Leno 5 or 6 times in real life now. It's so weird. When I was a kid, I'd watch his show, and all I could think of was how I wanted to grow up and have a job like that, or be that kind of person where I could be funny all day long, and now I've seen him in real life several times. I grew up and moved to L.A. and now I've seen Jay Leno multiple times. It's so weird. It's like my life has panned out exactly the way it's supposed to have panned out, and now that I've ridden the L.A. wave, I'm just ready for my life to be calm again. I'm ready to go back to my roots. Maybe it's like how elephants get old and go back to the place where they were born once they're ready to die. I'm not really ready to die, but I've had a good run, and like any good TV show, there just comes a time where the series is over, and it's time to move on. I'm ready for that now.