Last night I dreamed that there was this sort of big, society-wide game run by one guy, where he'd give one person a series of slips of paper that he'd written on in pencil that would tell you to do certain challenging things, or give you some big life lesson to think about. The guy was a friendly presence and everyone knew about him -- he looked like either Hall or Oates, I get them confused, the one with dark hair and a mustache -- and there was always a lot of talk about the game. Thing is, everyone who played it ended up killing themselves. No one besides the guy knew what was on these slips of paper, but they apparently drove everyone who read them to suicide. And then I started getting them. I'd see the guy leaving my street with a big smile, and I'd look in my hand and I'd have a slip of paper there with pencil writing. And I was so upset because I didn't want to die so I kept throwing away the slips of paper without reading them but they'd just keep appearing anyway. I think this is (a) a dream about confronting the inevitability of death, and (b) a good sign that I've gotten over all those teenage romantic death cravings I used to have, that I've gained a sort of healthy "life wish." Although I'm still very interested in death, what it feels like, etc. I once actually went so far as to do a self-portrait (it was an assignment to take your own photo in the manner of another photographer, so I chose Rudolf Schafer [for whom there are no good links]) as a cadaver in a morgue. It really creeped out my boyfriend at the time. And don't get me started on ouija boards. I totally should have been a Goth, except I never really got the allure of the depressed Morticia Adams fashion aesthetic. Morticia, after all, was quite a cut-up. I think the funniest thing I ever saw was Italian Goths. In England all the Goths were really scruffy with tattered cuffs and wiggy, sugar-coated, dyed-black hair, but in Italy they were all perfectly groomed with these nice shiny crucifixes around their necks. This was the 80s, though, maybe everyone's over being a Goth by now and are being something clean-cut and respectable, like Mods. Here in Santa Barbara we actually have a gang of semi-Mod scooter riders who get on their little sewing machines and ride up and down State Street in a colorful gaggle. What do they call themselves? Why, The Vesparados, of course.