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Los Angeles, California
I am 47 and thriving in Southern California. One day at a time.
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Tuesday, April 24, 2012

m'andhen [the migraine matters lp]

for all you blessed ignorants, who continue to refer to migraines as headaches...

[day 10]

yesterday, my neurologist injected anesthesia into my neck with a needle as long as my elbow.

but i'm getting ahead of myself.

it was my wireless wail; friendly fire that assaulted her senses on all fronts.

she couldn't see my flayed cheeks, raw, blotchy big from salt water moaning; feel the fluttery favor that pirouetted on the tip of my tongue.

"m...?'', i whispered, and before i could croak out my desperate request...

"do you need a ride to cedars?"

"they finished each other's sentences" should be adopted less for the finite honeymoon period of the rabbit-fuckers; despite their head-turning, "remember-when", shoulder-sighing, green-eyed narrowing, triggering behavior...and more for the unflinching, selfless gestures that grow like barnacles through stormy, weathered relationships. they decorate the embattled, rusted vessels still willing to go back into the waters; still tackling those perfect storms one more time...

m. had been texting and calling and visiting my hand for 9 days throughout this migraine, and by sniping my unspoken question, clearly, had no intention of letting go.

"1:15? i'll be there at noon."

and for an hour we drove, propping each other up with mini therapy sessions, stairmastering upstairs/downstairs with our latest and greatest, topsy turvy opinions about life; sucking hard on pop-psych-cicles.

[my favorite is grape.]

as we harbored into the familiar, healing hamlet and traded parking tips, i thought about the endless times this friend has skippered my stormy seas; navigated seasickness that near capsized me.

[transplant rejection, february '08
e-coli poisoning, february '09
fiorinol overdose, june '10
ovarian cyst, july '10
dialysis, march, '11
kidney transplant, april, '11
kidney transplant rejection, june '11
xanax/klonopin overdose, october '11
admission to rehab, october '11

goddamn, this list reads like a weekend itinerary at charlie sheen's house.

there she sat, quiet, patient, legging elegant, as i laid out my meticulously charted "beautiful mind" insanity for dr. a. to analyse. onset migraine. maxalt attempted. maxalt d/c. migraine day 3. methergine attempted. methergine d/c. migraine day 6. excedrin attempted. excedrin d/c. migraine day 9.

"we are very limited with rescue options because of your recovery and transplant. we can't use narcotics or nsaids. but let's try neurontin. and a low dose of a beta blocker. inderal."

"cool. i was on inderal for years. to help with my blood pressure and migraines. but i don't need anything for blood pressure now."

"yes. we'll do a very low dose."

"is zanaflex addictive?"


"because that really helped me a couple of years ago."

"yes. we'll do that."


she speaks.


"it makes you noodly?"

"kind of. it really just makes me tired."

"noodly. like in the princess bride."


"you know, when he can't lift his head, after the, like this..."

she demonstrated by wiggling her lovely, lithe body inside the armchair like she was the star, caged attraction at a vegas nightclub. damn.

dr a. lifted his head from MY pad of attention and glittered, "that's one of my favorite movies."

and they were off.

"me too. it's perfect! they can never remake it!'

"yes, it's funny, has action, romantic, sweet..."

"good for children, families, adults..."

omg. get. a. room.

"she's my distraction.", i teased.

and dr. a. twinkled his eye, and leaned wittingly, "it's wonderful to have a good friend, isn't it?"

[ah, she only comes for the egg salad sandwiches...]

so i sighed with relief and decreed topomax/inderal/neurontin/zanaflex the perfect cocktail, albeit non-alcoholic. so i thanked him for being so patient, so kind and so thorough.

and he put down his pen and firmly filleted my heart.

"you are a wonderful person and you have been through so much. you don't deserve this. we will fix this."


i think i have a teeny, tiny crush on my neurologist.

and as he illegibly scribbled the script, i turned to m., and in the enchanting silence, quipped,

"well, for a minute there i was on 3 drugs."

she laughed fabulously, "yeah. cyclosporin, cell cept and p..."

"prednisone.", we finished together.

"what was the most you were ever on?"...

and before i could purse my lip...

"23, right?"

but it wasn't until this morning, as i steamed away in a 6 am bath, slammed by a good ol' fashioned, full blown, golden-snotted, common cold, that i realized the power of her perfunctory comment, that had initially escaped me...

[then slam dunked me in the tub...]

an aside:

{the cold being the kind of event that will surely handicap this immunosuppressed lass for a couple of weeks, but seems to shamelessly delight witty-status-seeking, straight-from-the-headline-grabbing, facebook whores in their unending quest for attention; for the entire 2 days they have to contend with the sniffles.

["omg! i'm so stressed! i woke up with a head cold!"]

honestly. one of these days, i'm going to wake up and virtually go postal and lose 200 friends in a single [un]bound.}

does anyone remember that ad for coca-cola?

"i'd like to buy the world a coke, and keep it company..."

even i was a toddler when that ad first came out, and m. wasn't even born. but it popped into my head today because it's impossible for me to describe what it's like to have a friend like m. and it's impossible to describe how demoralising life as a chronically ill person can be. when people think you have kidney stones and not a kidney transplant. when people ask you how you are doing, then turn away to sort through their purse. when people ask about your immune system or your medications, and you see their eyes begin to glaze over by the second sentence. and your heart cracks just a little.

but then there's m.

who drove all the way to your house and left flowers on your doorstep the day you started dialysis. because she knew your biggest fear had been realized.

who showed up in 20 minutes flattened, but held hubby's heart; your hand, while you ripped, screamed and "fuck you!!!"-ed yourself into an intervention.

who not only remembered that the most medication you've ever been on is 23 pills.

she beat you to the punch.

i don't know how many people have a friend like m.

but i've been around long enough to know, there's no such thing as bff.

[best friends forever]

in life, the only thing that stays the same is change.

so if you find a pint-sized gorgeous with a gallon-sized heart, with a spout endlessly pouring; a flower with an infectious ache to grow, blossom; petals searching for the sun, and a spirit always soaring for yours, even if her own light has dimmed...

you hang on and you never let go.

["i'd like to buy the world an m., to keep it company..."]

Sunday, April 22, 2012

goodbye, marylou

"you should just get a hysterectomy...".

[day 7]

in the calm of her migraine's ebb, she gasped loud, too loud, at her girfriend's, hysterical suggestion; at the volume of an aging, porn star's exaggerated moans. but, as the meeting's introductions circulated, the surge began to needle and pin, and the idea seemed less extreme rodeo riding and more petting zoo fun.

["oh, god. yes! yank it out of me! release the hormones! i don't have my own kidneys! why keep my uterus?]

"hi, i'm k! and i'm an alcoholic!

["really, k? what the fuck are you so happy about?"]

...designing a script of drugs she knew she could no longer take...

[dilaudid, percocet, fiorinol, norco, vicodin, tramadol, tylenol 3, tylenol 1, xaxax, klonopin, demerol...]

..."la. la. la. i'm not listening because i'm really not human in the morning"...

[oxy, oxy, oxy, oxy, oxy]

"hi, i'm t! and i'm and alcoholic!"

["you're really LOUD, t!"]

she was thinking of nothing but me, my selfishness and i.

wondering if she is pre-menopausal. has a brain tumor. an aneurysm.

[the newborn hypochondriac officially deflowered and blooming.]

ok. clutch onto that wildly extreme notion, and swing for the fences.
hitting a home run with a hysterectomy? hmmm. we might be getting ahead of ourselves.
ah, the desperation of pain.

the way single women in their early 40's, clutch onto the fountain of youth with broken tips and chipped caps. with sinewy, over-toned, over-tanned calves, they kick off the-sins-of-their-chemically-induced-youths, swinging for their own home runs; lavish louboutins landing squarely on home plate. the 99%. they cram vegetable-du-jour (kale) down their throats, laser fashion articles with ultraviolet frequency and clamor like super ball lottery tickets-hoarders, for those poison, pig droplet injections, all quietly panting the same prayer...

"gimme. gimme. gimme."

one less wrinkle to take all their pain away.
["hi, i'm s!"]

["quiet s.! i could give a shit. because your lisp is slaying my senses."]

and then the circle came full.

to a woman who had recently missed several meetings.


today, she heard stories of road rage, online dating and deep sadness over selling a dream house. she heard stories of relapse, shoulder surgery and gratitude.

and i tried to read her face; seized acquisition.

[were we just careless whispers; blowin' in the wind?]

for m-l. has lou gehrig's disease. als. and she is an alcoholic.

it is a neuromuscular disease, of the brain and spinal cord; but inside your mind, you are the same.

in the short time i have been going to this meeting, m-l. could still say her name and disease.

but today. she held up a piece of paper with her name on it.

m-l. can't talk anymore.

but inside, she's the same.

but after today, i wasn't.

the sound of her silence was thunderous, booming, from a wild beast rousing me to continue, even one breath at a time.

this isn't about who's pain is better, stronger, faster. because no-one here has to walk five miles a day to get a bucket of water in darfur. it really is, and always has been, all relative. i'm just as terrified as the person who had a bad haircut.

and yeah. i'm really terrified.

[day 8]

but at least i can scream at my hairdresser.

thank you, m-l.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

a [mi]grain[e] of salt

it started with a kick in the head.

well, not literally, although with a neurotic basset nesting nightly on her head, it's entirely possible.

[day 1]


it felt like she'd got up on the wrong side of her neck, not yet realizing she'd been conned.

not until the floaty, thai bliss was guerrilla-ed from behind; heaven hijacked in a heartbeat. with a rubber screech to the curb, she was desperately digging in her purse, but it was already too late.

when the sumatriptan you frantically suck under tongue fails.
when you are a transplant patient and can't take any nsaids (advil, aleve, motrin).
when you are an addict and can't take any narcotics.

[cough. is this thing on?]

you. are. fucked.

for 5 days.

you lie with ice; with dog, curled around her frame. and in your unbearable clarity of pain, you are spooning with your neurologist, dr. a.. patient, kind and good. who you have called 3 times in as many days.

[day 3]


you are desperate. so desperate.

and your mind works faster and harder than flapping gums and chomping teeth at a down home cookin', county fair, pie eatin' contest. you know this cherub-cheeked, chicken could drive herself over to urgent care and manipulate her way onto a morphine drip. and you know this agony-coated moan could over-the-phone her way into a bottle of pain killers stat. and you know you could throw it all away with one little pill.

[and you know you want to.]

and her head ebbed and flowed with the madness of this migraine. the fierce flush of constriction and the brief rush of relief.

oh, and her fingertips burned at the prospect of release; singeing with sin.

and as she stood in line at ralph's, her phone rang. she glanced down, recognized her new friend, and knew exactly what she was supposed to do.


when she called her friend, c., from home, she told her how much pain she was in, and how much she wanted to use.

and c. told her,
"i know."
"but, then what..."

[and we all fall down...]

but still, she tested the waters, poking, like a toddler, like a brat; justified in her middle-fingered, skyward poking rage.


"i'm very serious about my sobriety, but my sponsor said if i take painkillers as prescribed, it's ok."

there it hung. her lie thick with anticipation; for his yes; for his no.

she waited.

waiting to be caught, having thrown it all away.

and a teeny, little man, who barely comes up to her eyes, first did no harm. he eyeballed her transparency in a second split, shaming those who blanketly diss the western medicine man. he took her hand and prescribed methergine, a medication that stops uternine bleeding; a medication found to be effective for migraines, but ineffective for hens.

and she sighed. caught, and released.

[day 5]


a fresh, new hell of menstrual migraine flows steady. as they discuss the extreme options, her head bangs the conundrum slowly. a low hormone, birth control pill; a subpoena for her newly, disclosed menstrual cycle. a cease and desist order for 6 months at a time, ostensibly breaking her out of jail for half year periods.

[pun intended.]

the insidious genius of a migraine is the erotic finger-stroking, euphoria in its brief retreat, only to choke you breathless, gasping, with its mindless blaze, flash; dark.

she walks the line. between man and machine. between liar and lover. between chaos and calm.

[bette davis eyes wide shut.]

when she asked her husband to attach her 6-month chip to her purse last night, he asked,

"on the outside?"

"oh, yeah. definitely."

she must wear this loud and proud.

and take it all with a grain of salt.
[hold the tequila shot]

Saturday, April 14, 2012

6 months

"at the golddigger - sorry"

if timing is everything, then irony's her bitch.

when's k's text came in from the infamous vegas nightclub, i was soaking peacefully in a tub; and just as serenely drinking in a tale of a saleswoman diluting her parents' liquor stash, in a wee ditty the big book likes to call, "crossing the river of denial".

[yup. even i'm raising a brow over this one.]

a far cry from the equally cinematic image of last october. girl gone wild-eyed. where hovering hazily below a watery line gone frighteningly still was no cause for alarm. for her reason to surface, was always to swallow more pills.

so when i thought about that night at the "golddigger", i flinched.

in bridget jones speak, this "married", rocketed on narco-holic fumes, acting like a fully-charged "singleton". fueled by uniformed flirtations, rock-starry-eyed fantasies and unrequited experimentation, she flew higher and higher, crashing flat on the tarmac; drawn and gold quartered.

so what do you do when you wake up 6 months sober? alone?

you let your dog wag her bum so hard she scares herself.

you let your sober sorority swaddle you in praise, in pointers and in pain.

you let yourself get mauled by a thai woman.

and you think. i can do this. i want to do this. i want to be healthy and free.

but you miss that first cold, crisp sip on an achy, baking day. beads of sweat, you swallow dry. then wet and sharp. ah. then you're wine wine rafting on a river of chardonnay; buzzing, churning. hands free flight. until the river bed dries up and what lies beneath is mouthwash and rubbing alcohol.

and you miss that barbituate buzz. when ms. migraine crashes the party, there's no-one like fiorinol. the perfect friend. she shows ms. migraine to the door; holds vigil all night long. and the next day. and the next. helping find words your thick, drunk tongue can pass off; helping stuff your undergarments in anticipation of the night's release.

and you really miss your daddy. the twinkled-toed, rugbied md. he loved pele, stamps and the beatles. and what you know about daddy is that he wrote "alcoholism" in his address book under "a". and he rotted into a shuffling, robed zombie who ended up where i was 6 months ago. in the hospital. then.

38 and dead.

[oh, wait. you don't believe this is a disease.]

but, i do.

because 6 months ago, i took 121 pills in 2 and a half days.

i believe this is an insanity. a disease. alcoholism.

one last habit to break. my self-portraits.

coming out of my thai massage, the owner told me, "you look beautiful. you never change."

and i thought,

"oh, honey, you have no idea."

6 months.

Friday, April 13, 2012

waited to exhale

can you hold your breath for a week?

i can hold mine for 4 days.

i realized i hadn't been breathing when my cell rang. i looked down, saw a number more familiar than my own, and gasped.


there's nothing more entertaining than the highway histrionics navigated during the california rains; except when you are driving in a bluetoothless, ghettowagon.

so you pull over, hit your hazards and wish you could hit your knees.

"your mmf (cell cept) trough level is 3.1. the range is 2-4, which means dr. p. is comfortable lowering your myfortic. your new dose is 540 mg in the morning and 360 mg at night. dr. p. doesn't feel the need for weekly blood labs. we'll see you in 6 months."


suddenly, the pounding rain is silent. the wipers are still. and you glimpse a ray of light.

the four month battle, fought with fingertipped fists turned yellow with tenacity tight, has been won.

and you wonder if this is the same natural high whitney felt when she scraped the sky with goosebumping, glorious efforts; before she ego-spun and ego-spooned herself to death...


you think about you, with the common cold. oh, and you, with the butt knee. and you, with the one-day hospital stay, and how i feel bad for you. not because of your minor maladies...

[oooh, i really want to feel badly for you, but, oooh, i really don't.]

...but because you will never know this feeling.

of armwrestling an institution to the ground; of raging against the machine, when you are more machine than man. of wrangling side effects to cry "uncle"; wrangling Them to decree "less IS more". of living a life experimental and feeling for one breath, that your body is wholly yours.

but the beauty of living in the moment is a son of a beast.

because tomorrow i could spike a fever, and my wildly, fluttering flag could float away into the rain; into rejection.

[and the rain poured down.]

so you fist the technological gods who destroyed your satellite radio, and manically flip, flip, flip for that killer jam to missile you through the forces of nature; forces of fate.

"new year's day".

and you let bono hail and wail your triumph all the way home.

to exhale.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012


if a picture paints a thousands "likes"...

but behind the lilac facade, there's more door slamming, heart slamming than a latin daytime soap opera. just call ours "caliente tropics!", after our favorite, refurbished motel in palm springs; frequented by another jam-packed, loosey-goosey boweled drug addict, one 50's rock star who had a penchant for singin' 'bout hound dogs...

[hot tropics!]

hot, thick rain.

often we are drenched in unexpected downpours. when a passing thought can send me to the edge, cliff; gawking, hungering over our hill at the blurry, snotty, early morning lights, wondering how many people are using tonight. waking the neighbors' roosters, waking the dead. sending him onto the couch and myself fetal, as the plates below us crack and seismic shift into a new order.

drenched by dawn, we rise and shed. hug and release. usually.

strap on your boots. caffeine chug. get on your knees.

[do it. " i feel like a fucking idiot." just do it. ]

there are no pills to pick up today. no 5 o' clock somewhere. no-one to yell at in this state of gratitude.

nope. you're normal.

so, cedars was fun.

it's always empowering when i can halt the head of transplantation's rambling train of statistics in her tracks. and by rambling, i mean freaking runaway train.

[no, daddy. even you couldn't trainspot this one.]

cut to: ME.

"i understand your generalized studies completely. but i am an individual. and it's only been in the last 2 and a half weeks since we reduced cell cept (now myfortic) that i haven't felt completely toxic. i know i rejected, but i also cannot. stress. enough. how much i abused drugs and alcohol."

pause. fantastic silence. pursing of the lips synced with conceding tilt of the head.

"that's true."

[she shoots, she scores!]

but in the remains of the data, they are less likely to reduce cell cept any further than switch me over to an older drug called imuran. a drug that my canadian doctor couldn't get me off fast enough because of the increased risk of lymphoma. a drug that they are reluctant to prescribe in the first year because of greater risk of rejection. a drug that i was discontinued from in '94 when this fantastic new immunosuppressive came on the market. cell cept.

[oh, the irony.]

so, like i said. cedars was fun.

waiting on my creatinine, my head yammered away louder and lustier than the month i was on hold for the role of  "a young diane sawyer" in "frost/nixon".

"envision 0.7.". "better than last month's 0.9.". "typical addict.". "more. more. more.". "wait!". "was that the phone?". "drink some more water.". "what did she say about imuran again?". "0.9 would be fine, though.". "just let it go.". "yes. just let go and let god.". "oh, shut up!" "shit. where's my cell?". "but, 0.7 would be better...". "OMG! PICK UP THE PHONE!!!".

with one hard, sharp flip my expectations were shut down faster than the '08 economy.

and with it's javelin shape, the 1.0 result slickly pricked my fantasmic for the big orgasmic, zero point-something. its searing backdraft and piercing landing scoring my bluesy wail; rivaling the most heroin-drenched ballad ever to ooze from holiday's lips.

["you're a little pitchy..."]

wah!!! but, i want to be the most successful second-transplanted woman in history!!!

[normal creatinine values for women 0.5 to 1.1.]

nope. you're normal.

but, as i sat next to my friend, t., at our regular monday night aa meeting, listening to an ex-catholic, ex-nun-in-training, irish lesbian with 19 years of sobriety talk about prayer, meditation and conscious contact with god, it occurred to me.

there is nothing normal about my life. and i love it.


normal creatinine values (f): 0.5 to 1.1
normal creatinine values (f) with one kidney: 1.8

damn, mcintyre. you give good kidney.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

rock(y) star(t)

i don't have a theme song, but if i did, my current jam would be a mix of cohen's "hallelujah" and sir mix-a-lot's "i like big butts".

[i own it, aight?]

so it was with an odd hybrid of styrofoam-swilling, caffeine-charged, and 24-hr. fitness, endorphin-induced, serenity that i eased into my seat at the windsor club, and anticipated my passive place as spectator for the evening.

wednesday evenings have become our unofficial date night; his 'n her meetings. we pack up our issues, and ourselves, into the car, only to unpack it all when we arrive in glendale. no kodachrome knockouts for these barely marrieds. leave the cinematic comforts to the newlyweds. no, go ahead. keep the artery-clogging popcorn and mind-numbingly, boring banter to yourselves. we retired the bumpin' bleacher seats a lifetime ago.

i'll take this surreal, speed, soul dating over crap cinema any day.

[it's sexy and i know it.]

so, i sat. peaceful. pulled back ponytail, no makeup, fat jeans; bald ego. ready to enjoy first, the opening act, a 5 minute speaker, and then the headliner, a 45 minute speaker. as the new leader, v. had yet to introduce the speaker and was apologetically rambling about forgetting to ask someone ahead of time, but now he had someone special in mind, and it was going to be a surprise to her and...

[uh. oh.]

you know that feeling when you've tripped, and you are actively in mid-flight, and you realize it's going to hurt a lot when you hit, but there's nothing you can do about it, which really sucks, because it looks like it's going to REALLY hurt and...

"our 5 minute speaker is...HENRIETTE!"


clutch head. gasp loudly. turn multiple shades of red. and whatever you do, make sure you cry "NO", very dramatically.

truth is, i was terrified. i think i have shared 5 times in as many months. i'm a newborn lolling its 5 month-old head around; barely have i been able to lift and wipe away the drool, never mind form words and speak.

but in aa, you do what is asked of you, if you want to stay sober. and i want to stay sober.

boom. boom. boom. boom. BOOM. BOOM.

there i was. standing at a podium, in front of a mic., in front of 100 people, wondering when universal studios had time to bring in their sound fx. department, and if they could please turn it down. i knew my cheeks now qualified as the official selection of red for alcoholics anonymous. probably "flushed for fiorinol!" or "pretty in p-intervention!".

i didn't look up. i couldn't breathe. and i still couldn't hear.

boom. boom. boom. boom. BOOM. BOOM.

"hi. i'm henriette. and i'm an alcoholic."


[except i'm quite sure they didn't say it with an "E".]

"i'm, um, originally from toronto, canada. um. i've lived here for about, 15, um, 16 years. um..."

[one of my biggest pet peeves is public speakers overpeppering with "um"s. knock it off, pepper spice.]

"when i was 19, i had my first kidney transplant. when i was discharged, the er nurse told me if i continued to have pain, i could get tylenol 1's over the counter at any pharmacy. that was it. every time i went to canada, the very first thing i would do was visit "shoppers drug mart" and get my codeine. it started with 2 or 3 tablets a day, like a cup of coffee, and by rehab, i was taking 18-20. every day since i was 19. i'm 43."

and i had them.

and they had me.

and with that maple-leaf trembling revelation of canadian codeine, they had my back.

"black out drinking...diagnosis...kidney rejection...fiorinol...abuse...hide alcohol...dope sick...disability...vodka...dialysis..."

ah, their silence was like velvet, cushioning my fright; every intake of breath, a nudge from behind;
every nod of the head, a hand fingering mine.

"the first thing i did after the transplant was crack open a corona and take a big swig with my dilaudid. and all i could see was that i was celebrating."

"rejected...prograf...oxycontin...stole husband's pills...rehab..."

and then i talked about aa. that my first meeting in west hollywood was not like a lightning bolt, earth-shattering, oprah-esque, lightbulb, "a-ha!", moment. it was a quiet click. the piece that you've been searching for finally fitting into place. that i have a relationship with a god that's hit and miss and stop and start, but it's there. and i'm grateful. so grateful.

and the place exploded. take that bono.

at the break, throngs and throngs (all right, a bunch) of people, loved and laughed all over this flustered filly. cheeks now stained a modest flush; ponytail sprouting appropriate tendrils of delight. shucks, i couldn't keep up with the hulking frames bending to enfold me and call out my name!


poke. (ow.) prod. (ow.) peck. (ow.) henpecked!; someone pop this soaring, pumped-up ego. it felt too good. the crowd felt too loud. it was all about me. me. me. me. me. me. and i didn't like it.

and then i saw her.

her name was s., with slumped shoulders too broken, too bent, to carry her load. she had done everything right. pretty clothes, pretty makeup, pretty smile. but when i dove into her pools, i found we share one pretty big mess...

"thank you so much. your story touched me more than any other share."

sharp intake of breath. this time mine.

so we talked. and i listened to her story. and i realized that as much as i would LOVE to sit in a corner, drool and suck on my thumb, i am not a newcomer anymore.

[i am responsible.]

and as i waited downstairs in the lobby for uberhubby, (man, can those al-anons talk!...too soon?), breaking news flashed on the local news.

"the autopsy report on whitney houston's death was released today. the popstar was found face down in a bathtub with cocaine, alcohol, pills, prescription and non in her system..."

[cue: sound fx.]

with a familiar whistle, a hand slipped into mine and we briefly glanced at the screen. then together we turned and walked into the night.

i can't wait for next week.