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September 29, 2004

happy 150K, Spice!

i've been toying with the idea of buying a new car lately, but i've been remarkably reluctant to actually do anything about it. i've test-driven a few replacements, but for some reason i'm just not that excited about them. the Mini was hot & sexy, but with its terrible maintenance record and cost of replacing parts, that crush was short-lived. the Scion xA was zippy and fun, but what i liked most about it was it felt like my current car. see, while i pretend that my main consideration in choosing a new set of wheels is gas economy/size and reliability, the real watermark is: how much is it like Spice?

Spice, or the SpiceMobile, is my beloved little blue-green '93 hatchback Honda Civic. she's a replacement car herself -- I had to buy her while wearing a neck brace, with the insurance check from my first Civic that got utterly totalled by a speeding van. she had 48,000 miles on her at the time. i was a broke out-of-college kid who was substitute teaching junior high to pay bills and was trying to get jobs in the crazy world of film & television. but as with most broke out-of-college kids, i didn't realise i was that destitute, really -- eating spaghetti sauce on pieces of bakery outlet bread tossed in the ToastMaster and calling it pizza was just a way of life. besides, i was having a blast being young and crazy and adventurous and creative along with my roommates; who, like me, were trying to chase our dreams, figure out our lives, have fun, and still pay rent on time.

life moved along, and Spice stayed with me, faithful and gas-sipping. when she was about to turn 100,000 i tied silver ribbons on her antenna in preparation. i was at the 57/91 interchange on my way to meet friends for dinner at Felix's. my splendid sister Erin, whom i unabashedly adore, was with me, and we screamed and cheered and shouted and honked wildly when the odometer rolled over. it was a heartfelt celebration. i remember thinking how different things were now: i wasn't a broke, out-of-college kid anymore. i had just moved into a new apartment, and my career was taking off, thanks be to God's faithfulness. it was now "normal" for me to spend multiple months out of the country on various television shoots, and besides sailing around the world, i'd just completed trips to South Africa and Japan. the following week, i would be hiking Half Dome in Yosemite. and plus, i'd just said yes to dating a very cute boy. life seemed even more full of possibility and adventure than it did at 48,000 miles.

this last week my Spice turned 150,000 miles. i never really thought she'd take me this far, but hey, i never thought my life would quite look like it does now either. there were no silver ribbons this time, as the odometer birthday crept up on me by surprise. i honked happily and cheered by myself as the numbers rolled over. this time, i was leaving work (yes, still television) heading south on the 710 to my wonderful, supportive boyfriend's house (yes, that cute boy lasted 50,000 miles!) so we could go surfing, and the next week i would be leaving for Italy and New York (yes, still travelling). life is still big and adventurous and full of possibility. God is still faithful. i am still blessed. and i'm not ashamed to say that i love my wee car.

happy 150K, little Spice. now i don't know if i can replace you.

Posted by hadashi at 2:44 PM | Comments (2)

September 7, 2004

strange things are afoot at the circle-K.

recently, as i was sitting at a fold-out table scarfing down my lukewarm lunch out of a styrofoam box, the guy across from me began to tell me of his, well, most excellent adventures. his friend's brother got them jobs as P.A.s (production assistants -- the lowest in the tv/film production food chain) on this show i'm currently on. so they packed up their car, drove out to Hollywood-- ok, Los Angeles -- ok, the San Gabriel Valley -- full of dreams and excitement. they were going to California! they were going to the land of their boyhood dreams! to the sacred mecca of...San Dimas! yes, that's right -- San Dimas. to you it may be just a hot, dusty Inland Empire freeway exit, but to these guys, it is the Holy Land of Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure.

please don't get me wrong; i love this 1989 classic film too; in fact, i actually consider Keanu Reeves at his ultimate best in this movie. but making a pilgrimage there? i thought with incrudulity: this is possibly the geekiest thing i have ever heard. i listened to this guy rapturously relive his day's quest. after taking photos in front of San Dimas High, and a Circle K ("it could've been THE Circle K" he says, eyes shining, "but we weren't sure."), the buddies searched for the mall where the "past dudes" ran rampant, and went to Raging Waters, the waterpark Napoleon loved so much. but when i asked him, half-facetiously, if they'd found any "princess babes," he gave me such a look of appreciation, so completely devoid of anything but lifelong love for all things Bill & Ted, that I suddenly reconsidered: who's the geek here? who's the real loser?

um, i think it's me. see, for that one day, this guy & his buddy were able to live out their Bill & Ted passion, to pursue a lifelong dream and adventure there at the confluence of the 210, 10, and 57 freeways. i had to really think hard about my passions, about the things and the dreams in my life that i love so well that my eyes shine when i talk about them. am i downgrading some of these things because they aren't big, grandiose, impressive dreams or things? am i ashamed of some of them because i think people won't understand me or think i'm a freak? i now realise i need to own and identify my passions; nuture them, pursue them -- no matter how small or odd or personal they may be. that would be most triumphant.

Posted by hadashi at 7:50 PM | Comments (4)