Sunday, April 27, 2008
       

Journal: Last years Co Op House, Night Club Job, New Job,silly rants & interview with Ralf

(just to let everyone know I lived by myself many times...i moved into a commune house because i was
having nightmares and bad dreams...and i would like to say RIP to my roomate joe from the f house who
ended his life last month - updated on 06/11/08)
Theirs been a lot of changes in my life over the past 12 months. Last year I moved out of the "F House"
which was a D.I.Y. Co-Op house located near the top of the hills in Echo Park in the same neighborhood
where the Hillside Strangler used to dump his victims' bodies.
The house had 3 floors and my room was on the 2nd floor. My walls were all big windows going all the way
around. Problem was, the sun would always shine on my face and wake me up. And during the winter,
since it's all glass windows, it would get really cold in my room.
We used to have our own garden when Paloma was living there. But we ate it all, let the garden go, and
later joined an organic food co-op instead.

I was working a lot and I was rarely home, so I didn't really cook too much. Sometimes when I'd come home,
Paloma, Will or Irina would make me really good vegan food. At the house we had lots of get together and
parties with live bands (not punk). And we had many vegan potlucks.

Out of all the co-op houses I've lived in over the years, that house one of the most fun. I lived there for
almost 2 years and never got in any disagreements with any of my roommates. Not even one argument or
fight.
I'm really easy to get along with, the type of person who respects others and is not judgmental. I sometimes
go out of my way to help people and this has gotten me into trouble at times. If someone is fake, dishonest
and hurts me or the people I love, I disconnect with that individual instead of wasting time fighting and
trying to get revenge. If I don't like someone I will say it straight out to their face. I never stab people in the
back – I do it right in the front. And I respect people who are straight forward with me. But I'm by no means
perfect and sometimes I get frustrated. When I'm angry I don't really hold it in. But despite all that, I'm really
easy to get along with. A lot of people say that I'm shy and too serious, but if you get to know me I can be
funny sometimes.

Before I moved out of the F House, there were some crazy things happening. Irina found a scorpion in the
living room, and then we had mountain mice jumping from our bookshelves (so every time I'd hear a little
sound I would wake up immediately and turn the lights on). We lived in the hills so we saw a lot of strange
looking bugs. On two separate occasions, a couple of my roommates got chased by coyotes. The coyote
problem was getting so bad that the neighbors called a meeting about it.

I wanted a change so I moved out of F House and stayed with my friend, Ralf, for a month to save up some
deposit money. Then I got my own place.
But I still visit F House a few times a month just to hang out and pick up my mail.

So I have my own studio now. On my days off I walk around the neighborhood and it's really great because
there're 2 non-chain movie theatres that're walking distance, plus cafes, veggie restaurants, a library, book
store and some cool shops.

I've also been recycling and taking all my bottles to the recycling center. And I'm trying to drive less now and
just ride Katie's bicycle. She's letting me borrow it until she gets back from New York. It's a mountain bike and
I just added head lights so I can ride at night. All I need now is to buy a helmet.


I no longer work at Trader Joe's. I'd been working so much that I didn't even take my 2 week paid vacation. I
gave them 2 weeks notice and got a new job as a Healthy Life Style Coach at the local gym. (I don't want
people visiting me at work yet because I just started last month.)

The Coach Approach is an exercise support program designed to teach new and returning exercisers the
skills they need to make exercise a lifestyle habit. I do one on one counseling sessions, give tours (we have 3
floors), do safety checks, and walk around the room to count classes, making contact with members who are
doing exercises improperly. We have 180 group exercise classes weekly for every fitness level. Some of the
classes are:
*Abs only (a power blast to the mid-section that will teach you to support your back and develop good
posture).
*ABT (Abs / Buns / Thighs) a killer workout that targets the lower body with moves to strengthen and tone.
*Aqua Fit and Tone
*Ballet
*Belly Dance
*Capoeira
*Men's Boxing / Women's Boxing
*Cardio Dance and Sculpt
*Dance / Jazz / Funk
*Karate
*Meditation
*Pilates
*Studio Cycling
*Swim Fit
*Yoga ( Hatha / Ansusara, Power Yoga, Vinyasa Yoga, Kundalini Yoga, Foundation Yoga).

I'm working and getting trained at the same time and to become a certified instructor I have to finish 5 more
classes:
-First Aid
-CPR /AED
-Principle of Healthy Life Styles
-Strength and Conditioning Instructor class
-Coach Approach class.

I've already finished two classes. Hopefully by mid-summer I'm going to start taking life guard classes. My
goal is to have a 3rd job as a life guard if I pass the test.
I still have my 2nd job working at the night club on different nights. I'm a video camera man, not a bouncer.
People think that I'm security because I have headphones and a walkie talkie. Last year we had some
crazy funny stuff at the club. We had x-rated film release parties and I was trying to dodge every camera
so I wouldn't get video taped for their documentary. I'm not going to go into details what I saw. We also had
some big group art shows. And we used to have celebrity nights where Real World from MTV came in to
film.
This year we got rid of Asian hip-hop night.
For some reason on Asian hip-hop nights, guys don't really ask women to dance with them. They'd come
with their girls and group of friends, but didn't really talk too much outside of their circle or try to pick up on
other girls. I don't know, maybe it's a cultural thing. But the dancing was very funny. It was like couples dry
humping to hip-hop.
But it was mostly mainstream hip-hop stuff.
Asian Go Go Dancers at my work                                                 Took this photo from upsatirs
Asian Go Go Dancers
Lately, I've been meeting a lot of cool, crazy, funny and weird people at the club.
I work for 9 hours coaching, get a 2 hour break, and head straight to the club, so sometimes I won't talk to
anyone because I'll be really tired. It really depends on my mood and if I get enough sleep or not. But on
weekends I get about 4-5 hours of sleep.

Saturday Night at work is mostly Industrial and Goth crowd.
Live band room Bondage Room
Saturday Night: Air Go Go Dancer? I have no idea what kind of dance this is.
Air Go Go Dancer
On Wednesday the club gets packed from 300- 400 people. It's mostly Electro
Clash music. There's a live band room, mostly indie rock bands, and a dance
room. Upstairs is the kick-back loft.
Wednesday night at the Club
Some of the people I've talked to moved to Hollywood hoping to be
an actor/actress, model or rock star. It's like a dream thing that's
very competitive.
Everybody wants to make more money in Hollywood because a lot
of people are living paycheck to paycheck. The average students I
talk to have jobs at restaurants waiting tables because of the tips,
or as bartenders or cocktail waitresses. Some people who have
parents to support them just go to college full-time. The rent in
Hollywood is pretty expensive unless you have some kind of rent
control.

I remember when I told Ralf that I got a new job and was making just
a little more than at Trader Joe's, he said, "It's not all about how
much money you make at work. It's what you are doing with that
money. Are you using it to help people?" That kind of stuck in my
head, but as you get older sometimes life gets hard because you
have all these bills to pay. I try to live an anti-capitalist life but in the
real world you need money to survive. It pays for food, gas, rent,
etc. I remember asking Ralf awhile back if he had any money saved
up for retirement and he told me our goal should be revolution
(radical change), not worrying about that kind of stuff. Man, if
everyone thought like him I think their would already be fast change
in this world.

Another thing is you can't stereotype people who go to clubs. It's
true that a lot of people go there to pick up or look for a partner.
But there're a lot of people who go there with friends just to have a
good time and dance. And there's nothing wrong if someone gets
lonely in life and wants to look for a partner at a club. There's not
that much happiness in this world and people should have a good
time.