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how do you say ‘amazeballs’ in chichewa?

22 Sep

coco too pooped to blog.  coco just posts a couple of pics.  malawi = amazeballs.  i drink beer now. the end.

my sweet baby boys

this sh*t's bananas! b-a-n-a-n-a-s!

inspirational peeps


my window into malawi has often been a car window

giving you the bird, part 1

30 May

coco is a city girl. i start to panic if there isn’t a high quotient of concrete around me at all times.  my idea of being at one with nature is lounging in a salt water pool (if i eat a granola bar, does that give me extra credit?). and wildlife? does what i witness driving down hollywood boulevard count?  and while i hike on occasion, i only do it because i can easily stalk appreciate the gaggles of sweaty, shirtless hot guys getting their hike on (if they have a cute dog, they get extra credit).

ok, i climbed to the where are all the half-nekkid guys?

but as of saturday night, say goodbye to city coco and hello to earth mother coco.

you see, i live up on a hill smack-dab in hollywood.  and our little hill is a mini nature reserve featuring racoons, skunks, possums, and a pheasant.  yes, a pheasant.  the first time i came across pharrell the pheasant (named in honor of his feathered money maker), i was mesmerized by this crazy-looking bird with super-pretty plumage.  and when i first saw him, coco proceeded to tell everyone about the fancy turkey that lives on her property.  thankfully someone informed me that it was likely a pheasant.  after i finished mourning the fact that it wasn’t an attractive turkey, i started researching pheasants and asking my neighbors about pharrell.  i found out that pharrell is a chinese ring neck pheasant and that a neighbor at the base of the hill raises them.  how cool is that?!

pharrell likes to greet me most mornings as i drive to work.  he enjoys chilling out in the same spot on the side of the road, all gangster-like.  he aint afraid of the squirrels.  he aint afraid of crows.  he aint afraid of coco trying to take his picture.

fast forward to saturday evening.  on my way to see glee live! (yes, i suck), i noticed pharrell was gangsta-leaning in the middle of the road instead of in his usual spot on the side.  i stopped my car and noticed that pharrell didn’t move as i walked up to him.  then i noticed blood.  oh no! pharrell was injured…and badly.  i’ll spare you the details but it wasn’t looking good.

i tried to find a wildlife rescue group that could take pharrell.  i either got answering machines or answering machines that said they weren’t taking more animals.  i left messages where i could and felt my heart sinking with every call.  as it appeared that the help he needed wasn’t going to manifest, i did what i could: i took a pair of old flannel pjs and made him a bed on his favorite place on the side of the road and lovingly placed him on it.  if he was going to go to fancy turkey heaven, he was going to do it comfortably and without risk of getting hit by another car.  feeling like crap, i then begrudgingly left pharrell and went on with the night’s engagement.

towards the end of the concert, i got a call.  it was one of the rescue groups i called.  they said that they could refer me to a nice couple who care for injured birds…even pheasants.  so upon hearing this news, i anxiously drove home hoping that pharrell was still with us.  as i gingerly approached the spot i left him, i didn’t see any movement.  but as i bent down, i noticed he was still breathing and he miraculously opened his eyes. pharrell was alive!  and i couldn’t have come at a better time as the sprinklers had just come on and he was getting both soaked and attacked by ants.

but since it was nearly midnight, i couldn’t call the rescue people.  what would i do with him until morning?  i had one choice…to bring him home with me.  at least he wasn’t the strangest thing i’ve brought home on a saturday night…

i must admit that the idea of picking up a large, wild bird, putting it in my 2-door volkswagen, and finding a safe place for him to convalesce in my 700 sq foot apartment that i share with a cat seemed more than a little daunting.  also add the fact that i am a public health professional who is convinced that every bird harbors bird flu and that i’m going to get it and die…coco’s discomfort level was at record highs.  i had no idea how i was going to make it happen, but coco was going to save pharrell come hell or high water.

to be continued….

click here for part 2

they call it bunny love

5 Mar

i’m no stranger to crime. coco lived adjacent to the nation’s capitol during:

(1) the reign of mayor marion “the bitch set me up” barry

(2) the crack cocaine epidemic

(3) and the most shocking crime against humanity: mc hammer pants .

so you can imagine that west hollywood is quite a change from the mean streets of DC. in stark contrast with our capitol’s penchant for murdering and crack-whoring, weho’s weekly crime reports are usually filled with misdemenors like, “according to the victim, the perpetrator wore a brown belt WITH black shoes in non-compliance with West Hollywood’s fashion code” or “a fight ensued after a mid-thirties, totally taut and spray-tanned man fought with a cross-gendered person (age unknown) over the last box of organic granola at Whole Foods”. indeed, the 90069 isn’t what you’d call ‘compton’.

or is it?

in the wee small hours of thursday, february 22nd, some mean-spirited bunny hater stole bunny’s license plates. both of them.


and just to add insult to injury, they broke her cute little antenna, too.

but break her spirit? never.

after two side swipes, a rear-end collision, and a hit-and-run in less than 17 months, bunny has had just about enough of the drama. we hoped the additon of (1) my confirmation st mary medal and (2) a st. christopher “protector of the highways” visor medal (both blessed by roman catholic father dudes for extra-strength god protection) would be her salvation…

but after the latest violation, we’re gonna have to call in the big guns…


if god can’t ward off the negative karma, i have no other option but employ a creepy, saccarine-sweet license plate frame. if you want the bunny love, you got to respect the bunny. it’s just that simple.

so if you see bunny and i hopping around the weho all pimped out with her new license plate bling, show her some love and respect. y’all. and by love and respect, i mean don’t hit or steal from her.

and just so we represent old-school style, bunny’s also got a good luck song:

here’s to peace, love and bunnies, y’all!

c.h.i.p.s. and a dip

19 Jan

when ponch and john pull me over on la’s mean streets, they’ve got one less reason to strip search me…

that’s cuz coco is finally a licensed driver in the state of california!

okay, so it took me 1 year, 4 months, and 1 day get my cali license. but,hey, it’s not so bad when you figure that coco spent 99.8% of that time at a complete standstill due to la’s sadistic traffic. no moving = no moving violation, right? and even though the l.a.p.d are known to be uber benevolent (*cough*), i figured i should play it safe, obey the law, and get my license already.

makeup applied and documents in hand, coco arrived to the dmv promptly at 11:40 am. even more earth-shattering than being on time AND with my eyelashes curled was the pleasant disposition of the dmv staff. rarely are the words “helpful” and “kind” uttered in the same breath as “the department of motor vehicles”. don’t believe me? the nice lady who took my picture asked where i was from and complimented me on my new cali pic. the testing lady warmly congratulated a guy who finally passed after four attempts and let anyone in a 300 foot radius know. the only thing that would’ve topped the experience? …

ponch administering my test.

or so i thought.while taking my seat for the test, i noticed something quite major. could it be? was it for realz?

holy crap…victoria beckham took her test here in santa monica, too!

so folks, as we embark on a 3 day weekend, don’t forget to wear your seatbelt and drive defensively because posh and i are both legally allowed on the roads.

oh, and if you happen to see ponch, please tell him i’d like to patrol his highway, too, ifyouknowwhatimean.

happy zigazigahhh, y’all!

that time of the month

4 May

Who doesn’t know what I’m talking about
Who’s never left home, who’s never struck out
To find a dream and a life of their own
A place in the clouds, a foundation of stone

Many precede and many will follow
A young girl’s dream no longer hollow
It takes the shape of a place out west
But what it holds for her, she hasn’t yet guessed

She needs wide open spaces
Room to make her big mistakes
She needs new faces
She knows the high stakes

She traveled this road as a child
Wide eyed and grinning, she never tired
But now she won’t be coming back with the rest
If these are life’s lessons, she’ll take this test


it must be that time of the month if i’m listening to the dixie chicks again. crap. and y’all know i like to be all cool like that with the music. see, i’ve got a rep to protect as the girl who was voted most musical in the 8th grade. but let’s be honest. coco has some seriously bad musical skeletons lurking in her closet.

most of my atrocious musical tastes can be traced to my formative years—and my first set of wheels. try not to be jealous, y’all, but coco was a proud owner of a 1980 pontiac sunbird, complete with no air conditioning and no fm radio. these two features, or lack thereof, meant an early adulthood filled with profuse sweating and am country music. something about “character” and “building” were completely lost on me. but the addictiveness of country music wasn’t.

a bunch of years and cars later, i still find myself “accidentally” stopping on a country station when i hear that familiar twang. oh lordy, those stories of women leaving their men and their double wide trailers get me everytime…they’re like greek tragedies being sung by daisy duke. f’n brilliant.

so back to the dixie chicks…i was hurling down melrose the other day, exploring the radio waves for something other than beyonce’s “to the left” (make it stop, y’all!) when i happened upon the dixie chick’s “wide open spaces.” well tie me to an ant hill and smear my ears with jam, but that song makes me get all emotional something fierce. and i had no other option but to belt out those lyrics as loudly as my little northeast voice could muster.



i’ve always (secretly) loved that song. something about natalie maines whining about screwing up but telling us its okay always made be feel all warm and fuzzy inside. but it wasn’t until monday that i realized it might be coco’s theme song.

so as I fire up my dixie chicks for a fifth time in as many days, I want y’all to forgive my musical transgressions…

and my desire to take fiddle lessons.

let’s just hope coco’s neighbors give her LOTS of room to make her big mistakes, too.
happy cinco de mayonnaise, y’all!

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