God Won’t Let Me Have Nice Things

Today was an odd day. I took it off from work because Susan and I had planned a “summit” with the architect and contractor regarding our upstairs disrenappovationtment (aka the $62,000 bath tub) — and that actually concluded quicker than I’d figured and more importantly on a positive with some hope that with a redesign we can get everything we want into the existing dormer space without having to rebuild the back half of the house and reinforce it down to the earth’s core.

So afterwards in addtition to the errands I planned to run, I decided since it was Thursday and the First Congregational Church of Los Angeles has free mid-day organ recitals (that I’ve been wanting to attend for a long time) I’d go check that out as well.

So I biked down there and grabbed a mid-section pew seat all to myself. Marveling at the church’s exquisitely gothic interior I snapped some pix with my ever-present digital cam. Another gadget I brought with me to try out for the first time was my new Sony digital stereo audio recorder, purchased a couple days earlier. I figured this would be a great environment and the church’s organ — an instrument they tout as one of the largest in the world — would be a great subject to record.

So when organist S. Wayne Foster stepped out and introduced himself I hit the record button, propped it on top of a the pew in front of me, and sat back to enjoy the show, which was marvelous. Forty minutes later it was over and I left the tape recorder where it was along with my backpack and bike helmet on the pew and got up to snaps some pix.

Before you say “STOOPID,” I agree with you. I honestly don’t know why I didn’t just pack up my stuff and carry it with me while I snapped, but I didn’t. And if you’ll be so kind, allow me my rationalizations.  There were maybe 50 people in the audience with me and more to the point: I was in a fucking CHURCH. Though shalt not steal: HELLO!?

Here’s the first kicker. After I finish taking my shots. I come back, grab my pack and  helmet and walk out, buying a CD and making a little small talk with the administrator on my way out the door. As I was the last one to leave, almost immediately thereafter the administrator swings the big bronze doors shut and not more than 5 seconds after that it dawns on me: I’ve left my recorder inside. So I bang on the bronze door but there’s no answer. Fortunately I find an open door into the smaller chapel next door, work my way behind that altar and out the back into a courtyard where I find an unlocked door and get back into the main sanctuary. There I find a person and apologize telling them I left something where I’d sat for the concert. She tells me to go ahead and look.

I do. It’s not there.

I search my bag wondering if I’d gone crazy and put it in there without being aware, but I didn’t. Then I ask the lady if there’s a lost and found that someone might have turned it in to and I follow her to the office of the administrator I’d bought the CD from and tell him what happened. He’s polite and friendly but pretty much all he can do is shrug and take my name and number in case it turns up. I thank him and leave.

I get outside where I’m flummoxed and frustro-angry. I can’t believe some fucking sinner just pilf’d my recorder. I guess I should be grateful the straight-to-hell goer was kind enough to leave my backpack and helmet alone.

Here’s the second kicker.  Upon getting home and uploading the pix I took, I’ll be damned if there aren’t three images taken at 12:52, 12:54 and 12:59 p.m., respectively — the first two show a shiny little silvery something which is my recorder propped up against the top of the pew and in the third one, it’s gone.

See for yourself. I’ve added an arrow in the first two, indicating the recorder’s location (the thumbnails are clickable for biggification). What’s notable also about the middle image is that the thief, is more than likely one of those people.

1 2 3

And the rest of the errand run didn’t get much better. I broke an ATM with four people in line behind me. Well, I didn’t really break it, but it took a minute of whirring and clicking to figure out it couldn’t give me $40 and then shut down, pissing everyone off. Then at Home Depot because they don’t have bike racks, I had to lock-up to a lamp post and the bike slipped as I was unlocking it and the seat tube skittered against some concrete, bringin about a six-inch scratch in the paint. Dammit.

Just one of those fucking days I guess.

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Will Campbell arrived in town via the maternity ward at Good Sam Hospital way back in OneNineSixFour and has never stopped calling Los Angeles home. Presently he lives in Silver Lake with his wife Susan, their cat Rocky, dogs Terra and Hazel, and a red-eared slider turtle named Mater. Blogging since 2001, Will's web endeavors extend back to 1995 with laonstage.com, a comprehensive theater site that was well received but ever-short on capital (or a business model). The pinnacle of his online success (which speaks volumes) arrived in 1997, when much to his surprise, a hobby site he'd built called VisuaL.A. was named "best website" in Los Angeles magazine's annual "Best of L.A." issue. He enjoys experiencing (and writing about) pretty much anything creative, explorational and/or adventurous, loves his ebike, is a better tennis player than he is horr golfer, and a lover of all creatures great and small -- emphasis on "all."