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It Never Rains in California but..

When I was in Jr. High one of the things kids my age did was collect albums and 45s now a 45 is actually a single and albums are actually 33s which I never undrrstood as a kid because 33s are larger than 45s but thats because of how fast the record is played not it’s size. One of my singles was “ It Never Rains in Southern California.” I can remember Saturday’s cleaning my room and listening to that song flopping on my bed and feeling I knew exactly what he was talking about. I didn’t feel like I was living the Southern California life that I was suppose to. Where was my Shirley Partridge Mom? My mom sang church songs or something that they called “standards” in the 40s and 50s on something called hit parade with an occasional Dionne Warwick ballad. I didn’t have the big groovy family like other divorced families on TV that lived in Southern California. I thought I should be in a big family and we should have a band and do kwirky pranks but I only had a little brother and if anyone got pranked it was usually me. My freckles and fair skin burnt too easily and I didn’t look great in a bikini like Laurie Partridge or Marcia Brady. Sing it brother I thought as the ideal Southern California life ai saw on TV made me feel mine so sucked.

Its been many years since that tune played on my record player and since I have owned any 45s but the past few weeks as it Has been raining here in Southern California as we have been quarantined throughout the USA and I have found myself recalling those lyrics flopped on my bed like I haven’t in many years.

Got on board a westbound seven-forty-seven
Didn't think before deciding what to do
All that talk of opportunities, TV breaks and movies
Rang true, sure rang true
Seems it never rains in Southern California
Seems I've often heard that kind of talk before
It never rains in California but, girl, don't they warn ya
It pours, man, it pours
Out of work, I'm out of my head
Out of self-respect, I'm out of bread
I'm under loved, I'm underfed
I wanna go home
It never rains in California but, girl, don't they warn ya
It pours, man, it pours
Will you tell the folks back home I nearly made it
Had offers but don't know which one to take
Please, don't tell them how you found me
Don't tell them how you found me, gimme a break, gimme a break
Seems it never rains in Southern California
Seems I've often heard that kind of talk before
It never rains in California but, girl, don't they warn ya It Pours Man it Pours

As Albert Hammond sang of the broken hearted dreams of a young man who had risked everything to come to California and risk it all for a dream he didn’t realize he was also singing about the broken dreams of a little thirteen year old girl who was feeling broken hearted that growing up near as fun or interesting as it seemed on tv and felt just like he did embarrassed that she was doing it wrong too, and she didn’t want her family to know how she felt like a failure just like he did. She was born and raised in socal but to testify with him not everything in the state is golden.

Some 46 years later I find my expectations once again fragile and broken. The dreams I had for this year are like the cake that someone left in the rain. In 1994 across the street from MacArthur Park on Wilshire Blvd in LosAngeles I flew on my own jet plan of sorts it was actually a million limo afforded me by a monthly bus pass by the MTA.

I decided to risk money I didn’t have on student loans to go art school to get my MFA. My marriage had fallen apart, monsters from my childhood had awaken and swallowed what remnants of my family existed and my husband left Southern California with my small three daughters. I couldn’t afford a good divorce attorney but they would give me student loans, but it wasn’t to be and I remember the spring of 1995 when was on the brink of making my next move with many opportunities feeling once more drenched in the rain of Southern California flopped on the dorm bed of an expensive art school crying that I didn’t have enough to continue on. It rains plenty in California but sometime its our hit days that are the worse. After several week of gloomy rainy days poof the rain is gone and it’s 93 - if you haven’t used your air conditioner since the fall and you turn it on to discover it doesn’t cool down believe me you pray for rain. Which leads to something new in co- vid 19 weather, what are the house call policies for repair men in this environment. I am usually really good at catatrophizing I to the absurd and I’d love to for entertaining purposes but I am tired. Looks like a cold shower is my warm milk night cap for the evening. Will write on repairsters later. Until then stay safe - keep your distance - and don’t drink the Clorox!

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