i got to chinatown earlier than i thought i would and parked on the street, and on my way to the restaurant, three old men growled at me in a language i didn’t know. i wanted to yell back, in their native tongue, “haven’t you ever seen a girl in a skirt before?” but i didn’t know how. all i could do was look down, pull my sweater around my body and walk faster.
at the table for eight, we feasted on dumplings and chinese brocoli and sesame cakey balls and shrimp and mango pudding. i just kept shoveling the food in my mouth, inbetween chatter and giggles. i must have had at least eight cups of tea, maybe ten.
“what does dim sum mean?”
“it means to touch the heart.”
“dim, touch. sum, heart.”
“oh, i thought it meant snacks.”
later in the afternoon, kiehl and i went to amoeba records to pay homage to the newest and largest record store in LA. we stood at the landing of the stairs, watching the mobs of people. i could have stood there for hours. the line snaked from one end of the store to the other, and it was made up of mostly male customers. the boy to girl ratio seemed like 50 to 1, and the boys were more geek than rock. people marched around almost robotically, arms carrying boxes stuffed with discs and records and dvds.
the way i felt in there reminded me of my first time at powell’s in portland. complete and utter awe at the rows and stacks and piles of books. i remember wandering around the store not knowing where to stop, so i didn’t. i walked right in and back out, and it took weeks before i could go back again to actually shop.