Tuesday, September 26, 2006

My hobby

I think the first person I picked up against their will and carried around was probably a babysitter who had touched me inappropriately when I was small. It wasn't easy; I was a mere child and he was an older man, albeit in a wheelchair. But I managed to pick him up out of that chair and carry (ok, more like drag) him out into the yard where I dropped him into a snowbank. This was so much fun that I decided on the spot to be larger than everybody else so I could pick up whomever I want against their will and carry them around whenever I want to. So now that's exactly what I do.
Oh, and how I love it. Businessmen, nurses, factory workers, police officers, air traffic controllers, grocery baggers, old ladies waiting for the bus, anybody. I'm a people person and I love meeting new people. And I do that by just walking up to them, bending slightly at the waist, grabbing them in a big hug around the waist and throwing them over my shoulder like a sack of taters before continuing jauntily on my way. It really is just that simple. Often, they pound my back with their little fists or kick their tiny feet or sometimes just flail around furiously, all in futile attempts to make me put them down before I'm good and ready. Sometimes I whistle a happy tune while they screech like suckling baby pigs suddenly taken away from their mother. Because it's important to enjoy your hobby. otherwise, it's just work, am I right?
Let's just put it this way; When I tell a girl I will pick her up for a date at 7:00, that's exactly what happens. I arrive at 7:00 on the dot, pick her up against her will, carry her somewhere nice like a new restaurant she's mentioned she'd like to try or maybe to a movie. Then I put her down and leave. This usually gets me home by 7:45 and I have the whole rest of the evening free. I'm not so sure what time she gets home.
Of course, I understand why people don't enjoy my hobby as much as I do. I know if I were walking down the street, minding my own business and some big asshole just decided to pick me up against my will and carry me across the street and put me down in line at, say, an ice cream store, I'd be darned angry too, in spite of being in the presence of all that delicious ice cream. So I empathize with these people. Honestly, I do! But their anger at me is not going to hamper my enjoyment of something that brings me so much joy and fulfillment. If anything, it enhances it. Sometimes when I do it to my boss, I pick him up from his chair while he's in the middle of a very important business call and I wind up carrying him all the way to the far side of the building. But only because that's how far I have to carry him before he finally promises not to fire me when (if!) I put him down. As you may know, the building I work in is very large indeed so I usually have to take a minute to catch my breath while I watch him scurry like a little toy crab all the way back to his office, cursing my name all the way. Laughing as hard as I do when that happens, it's even harder to catch my breath.
I'll tell you, I think everyone should have such an enriching hobby!

Monday, September 25, 2006

Rejoice, humanity; Devil Rays split with Yankees!

Now, this is a completely meaningless development, since the Rays will once again finish in last place and the Yankees will once again be odds-on favorites to win yet another World Series. Except it is good for the collective soul of all mankind anytime the Yankees lose at anything.
People say I am jealous of the Yankees and that's why I root so strongly against them. Nothing could be further from the truth. Because I can not think of anything more boring than my favorite team winning all the time and always getting everything they want just because they want it, overcoming adversity with checkbooks instead of gut checks. Where is the drama...and fun...in that? Anybody who has ever followed a team that has struggled for years and finally won a championship appreciates that one title more than any Yankee fan ever could. Yankee fans define the 80's as "the lean years" because Don Mattingly never got to win a World Series. With a sense of entitlement that disproportinate, is it any wonder that in spite of all the championships the Yankees have won, their fans have no idea what it really means to win one?
Of course, if you like anything at all about sports, the Yankees voracious, take-no-prisoners, scorch-the-earth approach to running their business is reason enough to root against them at all turns. George Steinbrenner and the Yankee faithful (and what a laugh that is, since there's no way anybody can convince me that the vast, overwhelming majority of Yankee fans are not front running bandwagon jumpers with no connection whatsoever to New York...and for what it's worth, if I lived in New York, I would be a Mets fan, in case you're wondering. Not that they're in the poorhouse themselves, but they aren't the Yankees) don't seem to understand that the Red Sox, Blue Jays, Angels and everybody else in baseball are their competition on the field but partners in the same business off it! When one team can afford to pay one player a higher yearly salary than several other team's combined payrolls, that's a serious disparity and obviously not good for the overall health and welfare of the sport itself. Gluttony is never good. Just because the buffet is all-you-can-eat doesn't mean it's a good idea to eat as much as you can. The Yankees should be trying to take more fans (and money) from the NFL, NBA and Nascar, not the Kansas City Royals, Minnesota Twins and yes, Tampa Bay Devil Rays. They're franchises in the same league!! Even the most aggressively motivated Burger King manager who wants his store to be the best in the company in all ways has the common sense to see that other Burger Kings struggling to stay open is not good for business.
So about a week from now, when the Devil Rays are playing golf and fishing and doing whatever it is that baseball players do in the off season, I will be hoping...praying...that the A's or Tigers or Twins kick the Yankees asses and sweep them out of the postseason in the first round, leaving them and their fair weather phony fans crying just like the lil' all-star featured above.
After all, it's good for the soul.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

How I amused myself today...

Today was my first day off work since, I think, last Christmas. Something like that. At any rate, I was overdue for a little down time. So here's how I spent it.
  • 7:30 - Got up (for no real good reason but it would appear I am conditioned) and had the Big Breakfast (omelette, coffee, orange juice, hash browns). The Big Breakfast is something of a Sunday tradition that hasn't happened lately since I've worked every Sunday since the Reagan administration.
  • 1:00 - Watched what had to be the worst imaginable start to the Bucs-Panthers game. Chris Simms threw an interception on the second play of the game and Keyshawn Johnson caught a touchdown on the third. After the game, Simms is rushed to the hospital to have his spleen removed. As R said, "Who ruptures their spleen?!? Honestly!"
  • 4:00ish - K and I went and moved a couple of small pieces of furniture and boxes around and went through the McDonald's drive-thru to get a couple of Cokes. I saw a worker's compensation poster on the wall inside and said to the cashier, "Hey, wanna hear an interesting story? See that girl on the poster behind you, the one with the cast on her arm? That's my sister. True story! That was her first arm modeling job. Yeah, pretty cool, huh? The bad thing is, there was something wrong with that cast. It's a fake; she didn't really have a broken arm. But she wound up getting a really bad infection from it. Ironically, she actually had to file a worker's comp claim to pay for her hospital bills. No, she doesn't arm model anymore. She doesn't have her arms. But not because of the bad cast. That's another story. Ok, thanks for the Cokes! See ya!". I like to do things like that when I'm with K and R. They act shy and embarrassed, but I think they enjoy it. I love entertaining them more than just about anything in the world. Plus, I feel I enhanced the McDonalds cashier's day a little bit. Just think, she'll be able to tell all her co-workers "Hey, you know that girl on the worker's comp poster? I waited on her brother! Yeah, she has no arms now".
  • 7:00ish - Back at K and R's place, we ordered pizza. When the guy came to the door, I wanted either K or R to answer it so I could yell from the living room (in an old man's voice), "Who's at the door? Is it that colored boy who plays the damn records so loud all night? Tell him to stop stealing my mail!". Previous times when we've ordered pizza I have yelled things from the other room like "Get in here and feed me, woman, unless you want another black eye!" and "Mother, is that daddy? Has he returned from the war?!?". But I wound up answering the door, and K and R never misbehave in an attempt to embarrass me like I do them, so nothing funny happened.

I love Sundays. Too bad I work more of them than most members of the clergy.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Okay, okay, I will solve all of the world's problems

Tomorrow morning, first thing, you guys figure out some way to get together and put me in charge of the world, agree to abide by all of my policies without question and I will guarantee you will be feeling better about things by lunch time. Here's a free sample of what's in store if you decide to do The Right Thing:

  • Nobody owns a car, everybody gets free cars! How does that work, you ask? Well let me explain. When you break a car down fundamentally to it's basic, elemental purpose in life, it is nothing more than a machine designed to transport you from Point A to Point B. It wasn't until the marketers got their insidious meathooks on them that cars became toys and symbolic manifestations of our bank accounts and penises. No more. From now on, all cars are government property and will be treated like shopping carts. Millions of government cars, all over the place, free for your use as you see fit! If you need to go somewhere, just hop in whatever one is nearby (the doors won't lock), drive to where you're going and just leave it there. Somebody else will need one and will take it from there. You'll be expected to put your own gas in them, but just think; car payments, carjackings and car alarms are now instantly unpleasant things of the past. I realize cars will accumulate in certain areas, leaving others underserved, but I've already thought that out. Just think of the thousands of new jobs this will create for people who will need to go out, round them up and redistribute them.

  • Daylight Savings Time, revised. Daylight Savings Time is a concept that has outlived it's usefullness, now that farmers are automated to the point of having robotic machines that pick cucumbers, pickle them and packed into jars before returning to the barn at the end of the day. So if we're going to keep it at all, let's make it work for us. You'll still be expected to set your clocks ahead one hour in the spring and behind one hour in the fall, but here's the good part: you can do it whenever you want! Feel like getting a head start on Friday afternoon traffic? Spring forward 20 minutes! Miss the first half of Conan? Fall back a half hour! Gonna be late to that appointment with your ball-busting probation officer? Not if you fall back 45 minutes! Wanna skip that meeting with the boss? Go ahead and spring forward a whole hour, you maniac! Of course, other people will be able to counter your Daylight Savings with their own, so the strategic thinkers among us will have the upper hand. But isn't that the way it should be anyway?

  • On a related note, another outdated concept is the three month summer break for schools. That was necessary when kids had to pitch in and help out on the farm during the summer months, but that's not the case anymore. Plus, I'm out of school now and don't get three month vacations, so screw you kids. And teachers. Get your asses back into those classrooms and graduate us out some stray car retrievers.

  • Currency of the new millenium: Orgasms. Consenting adults should be allowed to use sex to barter for goods and services. I'm not talking about prostitution, where in far too many cases, human beings with virtually no other options are basically slaves to be degraded and exploited by lowlife human parasites. No, I'm just saying that if you find yourself a little short at the end of the month and you and the pizza guy or the lady who cuts your hair can work something out, then by all means, go ahead. Besides, can you honestly think of something nicer to give another person? I can't. I've had people tell me that this concept would bring the world's economy to it's knees...yet, I don't think anybody would mind. Heh heh heh.

  • Out of the UN and into the Octagon! Now, I am World Leader (you may call me King. Or just Sir) but I have absolutely no interest in getting involved in the day-to-day of every little turdburg with a flag, so each country is going to need to keep their presidents, shahs, poobahs or whatever. However, I am hereby outlawing war as we know it. So from now on, all global conflicts will be settled by fistfights between the opposing countries respective leaders. Don't like being invaded by the infidel, mongrel race across the border to your north? Then I suggest next time you go to the polls, you spend at least as much time examining the candidates height, weight and reach advantage as you do their stances on free trade. PS: Nobody is allowed to fight me.

There you have it. Completely reasonable and practical solutions to so many of life's problems. No reason we can't get these and other great ideas I'm liable to come up with when I go to bed tonight up and running, just as soon as you promote me to the appropriate position of power. I have every reason to believe that I will be great at this. However, on the off chance that I get in there and it's not working out after a few years, I'd gladly step down and abdicate all power to dogs. Let's face it, we humans have had a nice long run but we have to admit mistakes have been made. And I think the dogs might have some pretty good ideas.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Well, I'M lovin' it anyway...

  • When Vanilla Ice's 'Ice Ice Baby' was out, it was on the radio every five minutes and almost twenty years later, everybody still knows all the words to it. Yet nobody owns up to liking it.

  • Milli Vanilli won a Grammy, but ask anybody who was around when they were popular and everybody claims they always hated them. The National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences can say what they like about their artistic criteria, but the Grammy is not an award that's given out unless serious revenue is being produced. We all know at least one really talented musician who's better than any 10 recent Grammy winners but until their music is sold at Target and not from the trunk of a car, they are not going to win a Grammy. So somebody had to have liked Milli Vanilli...a lot.

  • McDonald's sells them by the BILLIONS but nobody will ever claim the Big Mac is their favorite sandwich, even though you know good and goddamn well that when you're eating one, it's the best thing you ever tasted in your life. Sure, like that weekend where you and your roommate "were kinda drunk and just started fooling around and, well...", you may regret it immediately afterwards, but for the 4 minutes it lasted, you know you were totally into it.

  • Everybody wants to murder Barney the purple dinosaur and yet he continues to exist. Like it's actually hard to commit a murder if you really set your mind to it.

  • "King Of Queens". Jesus H. Christ!
I first noticed this phenomenon as a little kid when we would bust on each other for having clothes (or worse, shoes) that were bought at K-Mart, which was stupid since we were, in fact, all wearing clothes (and shoes) that were bought at K-Mart.
I wish I was good at naming stuff because I like to be able to attach labels to things that I bitch about. Sure, it's basically just a breed of good old-fashioned hypocrisy, but it needs something stronger and more descriptive. Maybe MASS CONSUMPTIVE REGRETTIVE DENIAL or just FULL-OF-SHITTEDNESS. Now, I'm not saying these things aren't bad. Indeed they are. They're truly terrible, terrible things with little or no redeeming long-term merit whatsoever. But they are/were popular so we need to just get over it and own up already. Come on America, let's celebrate our suck! In poorer countries, people don't have the luxury of deciding how to live their lives on the basis of what does or does not suck. For example, places where having food and shelter would qualify as not sucking and NOT having food and shelter is every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, twice on Thursday , continuing unabated through every single forsaken weekend.
I don't know. Do what you want. As for me, well, I'm going to go eat four Big Macs while watching Barney perform a medley of Vanilla Ice and Milli Vanilli's greatest hits and I don't care who knows it. But I will not watch "King Of Queens". Jesus H. Christ, I hate that show.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Technology lets me down...again

Tonight, I was composing* a text message and learned that the auto-complete feature on my cell phone does not know the word "giraffe". So I immediately threw it out the car window at 70 miles per hour. That ought to teach someone a lesson (probably not me, though). After all, what use to me is a cell phone that doesn't know simple, common, everyday words like "giraffe"?

* I like how you're supposed to say "composing a text message". Like you're writing sonnets or something. I know every time I get a text message that says something like "wtf where u @?????? Lol", I wonder how long it took the auteur** to compose it.

** I also like how self-important I am that I think my half-assed blog needs footnotes. I am such an auteur***.

*** I believe auteur is French for "writer with cheese".

Monday, September 11, 2006

"Still Waiting"


Party hats and balloon animals again tomorrow. Today, make some phone calls, hug some people, do what you need to do (but don't be afraid to make those phone calls and get those hugs tomorrow too).

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Blog updates: Minor tweakage has taken place!

  • First of all, check out the link to "Ten at the Top", a documentary film (currently in production) by Renee Warmack. This is going to be a great project and I'm thrilled to be associated with it in any way possible.
  • Secondly, it's all the way at the bottom of the page but it's worth digging through my tripe to find "Cyannide and Happiness". Enjoy!

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

I'll jump off that bridge when I come to it

Sometimes, burdened by life's problems, I grow melancholy and despondent. And it's at those times when I, like any normal person, give serious consideration to jumping off the glorious Sunshine Skyway. What stops me, though, is that there's a $1.00 toll. It just seems kind of, I don't know, wasteful. I can't help feeling that I'd like my last act on earth to be something a little more meaningful than paying a dollar and having a senior citizen toll booth attendant in a Hawiian shirt tell me to have a nice day. Sure, there's some delicious irony there, but they would probably feel like a bit of an ass after finding out I jumped. And I don't really need that on my conscience.
I do find it interesting that they collect the toll before you cross the bridge. It seems like crossing a a five and a half mile-long bridge that rises as high as 193 feet above the water is a risky enough proposition (especially in light of what happened to the old Sunshine Skyway) that payment should be expected upon conclusion of the undertaking, not at the onset. If I make it across a bridge like that alive, I'm more than happy to pay my dollar (unless my intention was actually to not make it across alive, in which case I'm probably going to be sour about having to cough up a buck).
Personally, I believe the great state of Florida is capitalizing on those who aspire to perform The Ultimate Bellyflop, which is either resourceful or crass, depending on your political leanings.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Duh: The Bounty Hunter

Do you have a TV show that you hate but you watch anyway? I'm not talking about a guilty pleasure like "The Brady Bunch" or "T.J. Hooker", something that gives you a campy, so-bad-it's-good feeling of satisfaction. I'm talking about a television show that actually makes you so angry that you'll be switching channels, see a glimpse of it, recognize it immediately as something you hate as you pass it by...and then find yourself going back to watch it, just so your stomach will ache even more. You got one of those? I sure do. It's A & E's "Dog: The Bounty Hunter", and it's about a mulleted cro mag named 'Dog' and his family of cementheads who are all professional bounty hunters in Hawaii. Dog is sort of like the illegitimate love child of Ozzy Osbourne and Brian Bosworth, only with bigger muscles and a smaller brain. But the whole group is a bunch of dimwits who converse in movie cliches (they say things like "let's rock and roll!" to each other with perfectly straight faces) and extreme attitude (just look at their tattoos and haircuts!). They all make me want to go to Hawaii, commit a crime and jump bail just on the off chance that I might get a chance to punch one of them in the face. Jesus, just look at them! You don't have to watch the show even once to know they're stupid (although I have, and they are). I have a hard time believing they're very good at their jobs. I just have to believe there's a lot of footage in the vault at A & E that looks like this:
DOG: Well, today we gotta track down a Mr. Ramon Hidalgo. He's wanted for failing to appear on a drug posession charge. He's a bad boy and we gotta take 'im down! We'll start by calling him up at his last known residence, see if we can't get some clues (dials number)
DOG: Yessir, is there a Ramon Hidalgo there?
DOG: Are you sure? I have this as his phone number
MALE VOICE ON PHONE: He's not here. Wrong number. Disconnected. Bzz! Bzz! Bzz!
DOG: Do you know where he is?
MALE VOICE ON PHONE: Um, I think he died. And moved away.
DOG'S WIFE: (whispering) Ask him if he's lying.
DOG: Hey! Are you lying?
MALE VOICE ON PHONE: You mean now? Or earlier?
DOG: Hmmmm...both?
DOG: There you go. You've been very helpful. Sorry to bother you, sir.
MALE VOICE ON PHONE: No problem. I'm just sitting here possessing some drugs and not showing up at court.
DOG: Well, you have a good day.
MALE VOICE ON PHONE: You too, asswipe!
DOG: (hanging up) I'm stumped. I guess you can't win 'em all. Call the bondsman and tell him he's out 30 grand.
On the other hand, some seriously good crime & punishment TV is "Party Police" on Court TV. which I caught for the first time tonight. It's about the marine patrol in Monroe County. What a job these guys have! They get to drive speedboats, wear cool sunglasses and check out girls in bikinis. Nice! But the best part has to be smacking around a virtually endless supply of drunken, loudmouth morons. Like the idiots on tonight's episode who got in a fight on a boat and got pepper sprayed. After they calmed down, their eyes were stinging something fierce and the deputy advised them to rinse them out with water. So they jumped off their boat into the cool, refreshing, water...cool, refreshing, salt water. Hell, even Dog isn't that dumb. I guess that's the key to law enforcement; you don't have to be smart, just smarter than the bad guys.