3/7/19 9:05am DEAR DIARY, yesterday was the busiest day yet of the NATIONAL EMERGENCY because it rained in Los Angeles. Hard. When it rains in LA there’s no doubt that it’s an emergency. People run in the streets as if they’re being shot at. Cars fueled by Starbucks creep along inch by inch through torrents of raging rivers beside the carpool lane, their pilots’ faces grimacing behind their fogged up windows as they talk about their careers on the phone. I suited up in the bright yellow rain poncho I got at a USC game last time it rained in 2016 and headed out to assist. People will see the burgundy FIGHT ON logo on my chest as encouraging when they are stranded and sitting on top of their cars on the Hollywood Freeway. I take some rope from the garage just in case. It’s that pretty multi-colored nylon ski rope and while firefighters might scoff at the beauty of it, nobody will be laughing when it becomes a lifeline as I perform a swift water rescue in the middle of a major intersection at rush hour. I toss the rope and some gardening gloves and some matches (in case I need to build a fire) in my car and drive straight into the storm. I sit at the first red light for 5 cycles, which is 19 minutes. Then the second stop light for 3 cycles, which takes 12 minutes, during which time the rain has stopped and the clouds have parted. My rescue skills won’t be needed today after all. I do a “Starsky and Hutch u-turn” and head back towards home base. I wait through those two traffic signals for another 17 minutes while keeping my powder (and my rescue rope) dry for the next time. LA weatherman Dallas Raines says it’s supposed to rain again tomorrow. And I’m ready. #FightOn! #RainRainGoAway #I’veGotYourLifelineRightHere #Donate2Kickstarter4Helmets
3/9/19 5:20pm DEAR DIARY, yesterday was the 3–week anniversary of the official declaration of NATIONAL EMERGENCY and I didn’t have time to write in my journal because I spent most of the day online looking for the parade. You’d think on an auspicious anniversary like this, there’d be a military parade or at least a “Come on America let’s stick together ‘cuz it’s a NATIONAL EMERGENCY” tickertape parade like they used to have during WW2. I went to the City of Los Angeles Events and Street Closures website and found no parades whatsoever. What? There was an Arbor Day event in the valley where The Tree People were giving away seedlings, but no parade. There was a Farmers Market in Hollywood, but no parade. There was a health fair where you can get your blood pressure checked in an RV in Long Beach, but no parade. Then I realized what’s happening. They’re waiting on the one-month anniversary to do the big parade. More of a round number. #BringBackParadesDammit! #LetsCelebrateThis EmergencyRight #Happy3WeekAnniversary #YouCanSitOnMyShouldersToSeeTheEmergencyParadeBetter
3/10/19 12:12pm People are slowly starting to think about survival skills. I saw a news story online about two little girls in Northern California, who survived for a couple of days lost in the wilderness because of their…wait for it… SURVIVAL TRAINING. That’s right. There were taught in 4-H to lick the water drops off of leaves, which is why they were only mildly dehydrated when rescued. Since it’s Sunday and my neighbors don’t have 4-H, I invited them to come to my first FREE Emergency Survival Training workshop. This time, I had FREE hot dogs, because I know that food attracts people. When it did not, I figured I’d just demonstrate the 4-H method of water collection in the wild, and my neighbors would see out their windows and take note, even if they were too embarrassed about their ignorance of survival skills to attend my workshop, which was FREE by the way! So I went next door to demonstrate for whomever was looking out the window, only to realize that they have no leaves at all in their yard. They chopped down their beautiful 50yr old fir tree a few years ago. Too bad for them as they could die of thirst later in this emergency because of that one bad decision with a tree trimming company 3 years ago. I went to the next house but noticed that they too had chopped down the huge 70yr old maple tree in their yard. Do these people hate water this much? I skipped all the houses with fake grass because I’m not licking dew off of any astro-turf, I have my pride. I passed all of the treeless yards and just went straight to the one jungle-like house way down at the end of the block with leaves galore. They have those huge banana palm plants next to their living room window for perfect viewing. I approached the window quietly and noticed a woman inside in a burgundy bathrobe. Perfect. I started licking a huge leaf right in front of the window. Ewe. Nasty. I admit that I didn’t think there’d be so much dirt in my mouth since it just rained. Ewe. I turned my head instinctually and spit. Unintentionally I spit on the window and the woman inside who was observing my class seemed a bit upset about it. “It’s okay!”, I yelled through her triple-paned window. “It’s just water. Look!”, I said. And without even thinking about it, I licked it off the window, which was gross, I admit, but a good teacher will go to any lengths to bring their students to that light bulb moment, you know. It never occurred to me that I might gag, as I did, at the thought of it, afterward, and well… I threw up on her window. I was a bit surprised as it all happened so fast. I could hear some screaming through that very thick window and I figured this was enough teaching for one day and I ran home, only to find an LAPD car parked across from my house. The cop was so on top of it that he had already heard from the community about my little accident down the street. Turns out that he was very interested in my Survival Training Classes. Yay. I asked him where I could buy some LAPD cop helmets for the neighbors, and he just stared for minute, then got in his car and left. Must’ve had a call.