It’s raining in L.A. today so that can only mean one thing: traffic.

Normal, ordinary rain is equivalent to a blizzard here. There are accidents on every freeway, massive flooding (there are no storm drain in L.A.), and huge delays. It took me 50 minutes to get to work and it’s only a couple of miles away.

The only good thing that comes out of this much rain is that people in L.A. love to talk about it. In the elevator, the normally quiet group of office workers was going on and on about the pile-up on the 405.

I said, “I don’t get it. What is so hard about driving in the rain? Why does it have to be Carmageddon every time a few drops hit the ground?”

One woman said, “Because no one knows how to drive in L.A.”

A guy said, “But no one is from here. Don’t they remember how to drive in the rain from back when they lived in New York.”

I corrected him, “No one drives in New York.”

Then another woman said something really smart. She said, “There are 1.6 million cars on the Los Angeles freeways every day. Most days there aren’t any major accidents at all. That’s the miracle. When you add even the smallest variable to change those conditions and multiple that by the sheer number of vehicles, it approaches almost certainty that major collisions will occur.”

Everyone stopped and thought about what she said. Seemed to make sense.

I was especially proud because that woman was Michelle.


So as you all know now, Carmageddon was the Y2K of 2011. But that didn’t stop us from moving forward with Chloegeddon.

Chloe came over around 2:00 on Friday. Things started off a bit shakey when I saw how much shit she brought. I mean, she’s slept over before, so I thought three nights would equal roughly three times as much shit. But she literally brought moving boxes. I was so freaked out I blurted out, “It’s just the weekend, it’s not permanent.”

In retrospect, this was the wrong thing to say, I admit. I might as well have said, “Don’t get your hopes up, kid.” Anyway, she got over it, and after an afternoon at the dog park, we walked down to San Vicente to have dinner.

Friday night was actually pretty fun. We did watch a movie (The Lincoln Lawyer–not bad but not exactly romantic or particularly memorable). And we did actually make s’mores on the stove.

The trouble happened on Saturday when we realized Carmageddon was a bust and that the freeways were empty. Chloe had been… how can I put this without sounding like a douche?… touching my stuff. Not to be confused with touching my junk, Chloe was just moving a lot of shit around. Making suggestions on how to arrange things differently. Opening drawers I didn’t want her to open. It seems super small now, but at the time it was really bugging me.

We played Monopoly and I got the yellow properties. She landed on Marvin Gardens and I had a hotel there. She didn’t have enough cash so she said, “Oh, well, you win.”

I said, “No, you have to mortgage your properties.”

She said, “What’s the point? You win.”

I said, “That’s not how you play. You have to mortgage your properties and then you can buy them back later if you get enough money.”

We argued about this for a while. Then she said I was acting like a typical investment banker and that “there’s more important things in the world than money.”

I had no idea she had this deep-seated resentment of what I do for a living. She’s never complained before when my banking job bought her dinner.

I said, “If you don’t like the way the game is played, then why don’t you just quit.”

I don’t know if she thought that had some deep subtext, but I really just meant Monopoly. But she started packing up her stuff.

I said I was sorry. I said to stay. I said the freeway is still closed.

She said there’s no cars on any roads and she’d make it home just fine.

Then she left.

Can someone please tell me what just happened here? And why did I think it was a good idea inviting her to move in for the weekend?


As everyone within 100 miles of Los Angeles knows, this weekend is Carmageddon, i.e., the shutdown of the 405 freeway.

The spillover onto the surface streets means it’s going to be gridlock everywhere. Most people are staying in the whole weekend, which is actually kind of nice. I don’t have anywhere I need to be this weekend, except there’s one problem: Chloe lives in Sherman Oaks.

To get from Sherman Oaks to Brentwood (or vice versa) may in fact be impossible this weekend. That’s why I have proposed to Chloe a novel idea: we are going to have a sleepover. That’s right, Chloe is moving in. At least until Monday.

We have a lot of activities planned. Movie marathon, dog park, game of Monopoly. Maybe we’ll even make S’mores on the stove. She has to go to the adopt-a-pet thing on Sunday but I’m wondering if walking around exclusively without any driving will enhance my opportunities to talk to strangers. Stay tuned…