Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Cujo

It's "finals" week at my school, so one of my classes got out a little early today. With the extra time, I was able to come home and spend some quality time with the famed pug: Maggie.

I know at this point everyone is well aware of Maggie's antics. Yes, yes...she poops out of spite, she leaks fluids out of comfort, and she attacks unsuspecting little girls out of PURE RAGE?

What-what-what?

OK...she has never even come close to attacking anyone...human. But the funniest thing I might have ever seen in my life happened today during our walk. I felt so bad to actually laugh out loud at a little girl, but man, she had it coming.

***

Maggie LOVES walks. She loves them. She is admittedly one of the dumbest dogs I have ever met, but if you mention the words "walk" or "park" she will instantly PERK UP and shake her butt so fast, that she has actually been contacted to be in numerous rap videos. Yeah. THAT fast.

With time to kill, I ask her the magic words: "Maggie, wanna go for a walk???" And then spend the next five minutes trying to calm her down enough to get a leash on her. Finally under control, we go outside...and she does her normal:

Five minutes of sniffing

Human-Sized Poop

Sniff Three Minutes

A gallon of pee

Sniff Sniff Sniff

Realizes she has more -- Poops Again

Sniff Sniff

Oh yeah -- Pees again.

Seriously...this is like a full day (or half day) for me...and she does it all in ten minutes. But wouldn't you know it...the second I turn us around to get us back home, a mom and her two children come up behind us. I seriously don't want to deal with them...so I pull Maggie, and try to get her to hurry up so she doesn't go over and play and/or bark at the kids.

Me: Come on, Maggie. Let's go!!!

Mere seconds away from not having to answer the same fucking questions I always get asked, she stops to pee AGAIN. Great. The mom and kids catch up to us.

Mom: What kind of dog is he?

Me: SHE'S a pug.

Mom: He's cute (Why do people always say "he" when I clearly say "she?" SHE is wearing a pink collar, too). Have you seen...what's that movie??? You know...with Will...

Me: Men in Black?

Mom: Yeah...have you seen the dog in that mov...

Me: Yeah...yeah. I've seen it.

And I am almost...almost out of this conversation when the three-year-old boy stops playing with himself (literally) just long enough to notice there is a dog right in front of him.

Little Boy: DOGGIE!!!!!

Now...this is going to go one of two ways. Maggie is going to get scared and bark her head off, or she is going to get all cute and cuddly and want to play. Surprisingly, she goes for the latter. She starts wagging her tail and slowly walking up to the boy...SUPER friendly like. He is just about to pet her when:

MOMMY...MOMMY...NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO. MOMMY...WAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH

The six or seven year-old-girl who is in a stroller (why, I don't know...at that age, you gotta fucking walk, honey), literally FREAKS OUT like I have never ever, EVER seen someone freak out before. She STANDS UP in the stroller, climbs ON her mom's back...and continues to SCREAM bloody murder:

MOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOMY.... NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO... WAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH... MO-O-O-O-OMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY

Of course, Maggie continues to stare at the little boy while wagging her tail like nothing is happening. She is very good at ignoring people...requests...commands.

I look up at the mom...and start to say sorry, but she interrupts me with the understatement of the fucking year:

Mom: Sorry. My daughter. She's a little afraid of dogs.

Me: BAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH (on the inside)

Me: Oh really? (on the outside)

I pull Maggie away from the nearly catatonic girl...who continues to SCREAM as we cross the street, and continues to scream as we are one block away, and continues to scream, while we are TWO blocks away.

Now, I don't like to think of myself as a bad person...and obviously, this little girl has a serious phobia or has been bitten by a dog or something...but I just couldn't help laughing....and laughing...and laughing at how some girl could scream at a dog like this:

video

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

What The Heck Was Bothering Me In September 2003?

I've been dipping into previous writings a lot recently, and I am doing so again.

I found this ?poem? I wrote FIVE years while cleaning my room last week. It was a little surprising to say the least. Me, clean my room?

No, I mean that I would write something THIS dark. Whatchagonnado, though?

Try not fling yourself off a bridge after you read this.



Weather Forecast

Rain.
Rain.
Rain hitting my door.
Thinking thoughts of no more.

Thoughts are invading
Palms start their bating
Mind is evading,
today.

Fist is still clenching.
Mind is still wrenching.
Body escaping,
away.

Closing my door,
Nobody cares.
Not anymore.
Fire away at my bland-crusted door.

I don’t want anymore.
Of the games.
Of the score.
My plans are escaping
Body, lifeless-traipsing
Click.
Erasing this pain.

Triggers are pulling
Mind, thoughts pooling
Craniums flying
Mind, slowly-dying
Why hold on to this pain?

Head, open canvas
Blood, stop this madness
Eternal, constant sadness
Blandness, all blandness
Finally all going away.

Pulling stops pulling
Pooling, the pooling
Drooling starts drooling
My crueling stops crueling
Today is finally the day.

And one less dark bastard
Needs no more master,
Thank you.
Sits still and plastered
Faster, please faster.

Mind still evading
Pain, knowledge fading
Drain, won’t stop draining
Carpet is staining
WHY AREN’T MY THOUGHTS FUCKING GOING AWAY?

Failing at death
And scraped from the floor,
Failing at death
Swung ‘way from death’s door.

Why are they crying
Yells, “Shots firing?”
Sirens start whining
Still I keep trying

To escape from this place
If not by will then by face
Hung from a wall
I will. I’ll show them all.

I will.

I will show them all.

Limp like a thought.
That has never been thought.
In peace, I am caught.

No more running from pain.

Tomorrow,

no rain.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Post Number 200: Anya -- You Idiot

OK...that's SARCASM, and I don't mean it. Anya happens to be one of my most favorite people in the world. One of those people I met and instantly knew I would get along with for years to come.

Anya was my mentee last summer at SDSU. She was going through a teacher training program, and I got to learn her in my class in the afternoons. And learn her, I did. Unlike most people passing through my life, I actually kept in touch with her...and we even went out for drinks the other day.

It was at this meeting that I discovered Anya does not understand sarcasm in written form. I made a passing comment about my Mom and she oddly responded:

Yeah, [your mom] is a little whacky, isn't she?

Now although this is true, if not an understatement, I could not for the life of me figure out how a person who I had not seen in about a year, nor had ever spoken to about my mother before would make such a comment.

My curiosity piqued, I inquired...

Why would you say that?

Not mean. Not judgemental...I was honestly just curious.

Oh, you know...how she said that Eva Longoria was a piece of ass and you blogged about it... and how she left you some crazy message pretending to be your friend and you blogged about that, too.

And it struck me...she did not realize that these were jokes...sarcastic, hyperbolic jokes.

But humor is in the eye of the beholder. All things being equal, Anya really doesn't know me (or my mom) that well, so I guess these intended-to-be-humorous moments COULD be seen as true. Who knows. (But seriously...you think my mom would say these things???)

What I do have to thank Anya for is that this conversation made me think about my days working as a member of THE Casual Critics. What...you didn't know I was a certified, bona-fide, fill-in-the-blank-i-fide food/retail store critic? Well, you, my friends, have missed out!

And so I bring you one of my favorite pieces of writing of all time from CasualCritics.com.

Now keep in mind (Anya), some things I write about below and on this site are real while some are SARCASTIC. It is up to YOU to decide which is which. As a little background, my friend Darron and I would actually go to restaurants and/or retail stores, take notes, and then write about them later.


Tomodachi Sushi Bistro

24123 Hesperian Blvd
Hayward, CA 94545
(510) 940-3800
Tomodachi.com
Casually criticized: 6/19/04

Why we went there

This is a very special Casual Critic Review. Why? you may ask. Is it because we actually got some real training on how to critique food? Is it because we are the best IMers in the entire country? Is it because Darron went on a date last week? We say "No" to all of these reasons. This is a very special Casual Critic Review because the woman who sprung Mark from her loins joined us with our review. No...not Elizabeth Taylor or Joan Rivers...but Mark's Mom, Yvonne. She added some deep insights into this evening's festivities...so many, that we have a new section in our review called "Mark's Mom's Gems." It should be noted that Mark's mom had no idea that Darron and Mark are THE Casual Critics. She obviously doesn't get out much.

So why are we telling you this? Well, we went to Tomodachi's Sushi Bistro (Yes, a sushi bistro in Hayward, California...right next to a junk yard) because Mark's mom felt like "having fish" and Red Lobster was just too damn far. (Darron and Mark have tried for months to critique Red Lobster...but they always come home so full off their Cheddar Bay Biscuits, that they pass out. Check back "soon" for a critique.) Mark, after driving by the sushi bistro for months, and being awed by its presence in Hayward...couldn't resist bringing his mother there. What better way to see how dangerous a restaurant can be...than having it mother-tested and approved. Kix be damned.

Food

Upon being seated at the sushi bistro, we were served piping hot tea and edamame, which confounded Darron and Mark's mom. "What are these little green things?" They questioned. "Mark, how do we eat these?" they begged.

Mark could not hold back his laughter, as both Darron and Mark's Mother asked these questions while the soy bean pods were in their mouths, and they were trying to chew through the tough exterior, unable to figure out how to release the beany goodness that awaited inside. So instead of telling them how to eat the edamame correctly, he let them continue to eat the covering. Good fiber, he thought...as he quietly chewed the beans sans pod.

We all ordered a wide variety of dishes, with Darron choosing the Beef Sukiyaki, Mark the Sushi & Roll Combo, and Mark's Mother the Salmon Teriyaki. For an appetizer, they ordered the Hawaiian Poke.

Mark found the Sushi and Roll Combo to be interestingly served without rolls. He did not complain as he was served a more expensive dish with sashimi that he got at a reduced price. The fish was tasty...and he felt there was only a slim chance of getting food poisoning. There was a plethora of fish given to Mark on his combo from salmon to squid, all extremely fresh and delicious.

Darron's Beef Sukiyaki ended up being a beef soup of some sort. Because of the soup-like quality of his dish, our server, Cindy Wu, had the unfortunate task of letting Darron know that while both Mark and Mark's mother received a miso soup with their dinner, that Darron would be unable to have such a treat. When he questioned why, her response was "The Beef Sukiyaki IS soup. Your dinner is soup. SO...huh huh huh...no soup for you...or salad." When Darron asked why his dinner would also not have a salad, Cindy Wu replied "There will be salad in your Beef Sukiyaki." It seemed that much like God, the Beef Sukiyaki was all things and everywhere...and does not come with a soup appetizer. The soup contained thinly sliced beef, silky tofu, large fungi, and sickly-sweet broth. Too much suki, not enough yaki.

Mark's mother initially wanted to order the Seafood Stirfry...but only after she was able to ask what seafood the stirfry would contain. Upon hearing that the seafood contents did indeed come from the sea, she decided that the seafood stirfry was not for her. So instead...she ordered the salmon teriyaki which she deemed appropriately sea-worthy for her fish dinner.

The appetizer was the Hawaiian Poke which was a sweet and spicy mixture of raw fish and onions (not an Hawaiian sexual position as Darron had hoped); it was very fresh and uncooked. If you desire large, pink, and fleshy, this is the appetizer for you.

The tea served at dinner was too hot for Mark's young, feminine, and delicate hands to hold. Darron had no problem with the temperature of the tea, and had to regurgitate the tea into Mark's mouth for him. This was awkward for the wait staff, but they grew used to it after awhile...and were actually seen doing the same in the back room by the end of dinner. Mark's mom beamed with pride.

Service

Do you like speaking English to your wait staff? Do you like to understand what is being said to you? If so, Tomodachi Sushi Bistro is not the place for you. Mark had an odd understanding of the waitress's feeble attempts to converse with our table, which left Darron impressed and begging for more sukiyaki. Let's just say he didn't get anymore sukiyaki...but his begging for more never stops.

The staff was quick to refill water and Venus-temperature tea, which Darron help to cool by spooning some out for Mark while blowing cool, motherly air on it and making "choo-choo" sounds for him.

The staff was quite concerned if "everything was alright," which they asked repeatedly during the last fifteen minutes of our stay. Darron felt that this may have been their new English catch phrase for the night...but Mark thought it may have been because they asked Darron this while he was choking on some poky during dinner. He almost died.

Fun Factor

Darron felt the lack of attractive women hindered his digestion. Not very fun. Using chopsticks is always a blast...so that is pretty cool, and there were even private rooms for authentic sushi bistro dining. It is also neat to burn your hands on tea. Of course, and all you Navy folk know this, when Mark's Mom is around...FUN isn't too far behind (don't worry, she'll never read this).

Bang for Your Buck

As far as Sushi Bistros go...this was relatively cheap. For Hayward standards, this place was the Ritz Carlton. Tomodachi promises lots of interesting dishes...but it doesn't promise that you'll leave for under $50.00.

Mark's Mom's Gems

As with any mother. sometimes special treats come out when they decide to talk or complain about anything. This is no different with Mark's Mom...and so we bring you...her gems for the evening.

(1) While walking into the restaurant, Mark let both Darron and Mark's mother know that sushi would be on the menu. He knew that both of them weren't exactly sushi fanatics, so Mark thought it would be gentlemanly to make them aware. Mark's Mom's knee-jerk reaction to hearing about this monstrosity was "Sushi...I don't want to be up all night." Mark, obviously confused, replied..."Yes, the caffeine-like qualities of sushi are world renown." Mark's mom chuckled at this...but you could still see in her eyes that she would be on the look out for any sushi products...insomnia hung in the balance.

(2) When Darron went to the bathroom, our soup and salad were served. Although there were three of us, we were only given two soups and one salad. Mark's Mom looked longingly at the soups and said "Well, this soup may be Darron's, but I'm going to eat it anyway." She then greedily downed the soup. And even when Darron questioned where his soup was, Mark's Mother innocently stated in passing, "I thought this salad was yours." Lying is such an awful habit.

(3) While eating Darron's soup, Mark's Mom asked Mark if the white blocks in the soup were "Toofoo," Mark replied "No, but they are tofu."

(4) After ordering our dinners, Cindy Wu repeated our orders back to us. Mark's Mom was convinced that Cindy had stated that Mark's Mom had ordered the Salmon Sukiyaki...when Mark's Mother had clearly stated that she wanted the Salmon Teriyaki. After a few tension-filled moments and a stare down between Mark's Mom and Cindy Wu...it was clear that teri and not sukiyaki would come from the chef's door. Mark's mother doesn't joke around about two things in this life...her favorite low-carb light beer and sukiyaki.

(5)Mark's mom let Mark and Darron know that Mark's sister had new braces. Darron asked if they were the metal kind or the invisible kind. She said "I think they were the invisible kind because I noticed them."

(6)While waiting for our food to come out, Mark's Mother indignantly picked up some chopsticks and then slammed them back down onto the table while loudly protesting, "Do THEY expect me to eat with THESE?"

(7) On the way home, Mark's mom stated that tomorrow is Father's Day. She then asked Darron "Are you expecting any cards in the mail?" The humor here is that Darron is not married, has no girlfriend, has no kids, and has not had sex since Clinton was in office. Mark's Mom got a good ZING in there. Mark's Mom 1 point...Darron 0.

Miscellaneous

Darron started to wheeze and grow very tired shortly after ingesting his mushrooms and sukiyaki. Little did Darron know that "Sukiyaki" is Japanese for "Poisonous and estrogen-filled dessert for little girls." Cindy Wu could hardly contain herself when Darron requested this dish usually reserved for pre-pubescent female children.

A nice restaurant in Hayward. Come while you can. It will be turned into a Taqueria by September.

They have wood-flavored toothpicks.

Right before we left, one of the waitresses ran from the kitchen crying. We couldn't figure out why, but we assumed it was something Darron did.

Overall

Mark: 4 out of 5 women's open-toed shoes

This was by far one of the best (of the oh-so-many) restaurants that we have critiqued. The fish was spectacular and I didn't order anything made for a little girl. I was stuffed when we left, and I didn't get into one fight with my Mom. This was quite a success if you ask me. Tomodachi Sushi Bistro...go for the sushi, stay for the third-degree burns from the tea.

Darron: 2 out of 5 Hawaiian shirts

I did not like it. I'm wheezy and sleepy. I feel like I'm drunk now...there's something in that sukiyaki.

Friday, July 25, 2008

The Name Game Gone Awry

So I run these teacher training sessions from time-to-time. Sometimes these sessions involve Americans trying to get a certificate so they can teach English, but other times, other times I am teaching foreign instructors how to teach English better back home in their countries. These are ALWAYS interesting classes.

You might not have known this, but there was a recent law passed in Korea that from now on, all English instruction now has to be in English...meaning they can no longer tell little Seoung Me Kim what a past participle is in Korean; they now must tell her in English. No easy task, to be sure.

So Korea is spending thousands and thousands of dollars to send their teachers to the US so they can learn how to do this for kids back home that don't know how to speak English in the first place, let alone how to understand while being taught in English. Hurray!

The best part about my job is when we get Korean teachers that have been teaching for 20 to 30 years, and THEY could care less about how to teach English using English.

I introduce to you Mr. Daeyoung. He is such a teacher.

One activity I use during teacher training is a very simple game that has a lot of grammatical applications. I won't go into the grammar here because I know you don't care, nor do I want you to know how much English grammar you know nothing about. Ha!

Regardless, this game is called "The Name Game." Here are the VERY simple rules:

Say your first name and something you like that starts with the same letter as your first name. The next person says the previous person's name and like; then, "does" him/herself. The third person, "does" the previous two, them him/herself, etc

For example:

Person #1 My name is Mark and I like milk.

Person #2 His name is Mark and he likes milk. My name is Darron and I like Donkey Dick

Person #3. His name is Mark and he likes milk. His name is Darron and he likes Donkey Dick. My name is Tauni and I like Titties.


That's it. As I said, it's a very simple game.

When it's Daeyoung's turn (he happens to go fifth in a class of 15 people), he dutifully gets the previous four names correct, and then says the following:

Daeyoung: And my name is Daeyoung and I like young men.

Me: Well....that's very...interesting Daeyoung, but you aren't really following the rules of the game. You see, you need to say something that starts with "D."

Daeyoung: daeYOUNG and YOUNG. This match.

Me: Um...well...you see Daeyoung...the rules...

Daeyoung: I understand direction...DAEYOUNG LIKES YOUNG MEN.

Me: OK...ok...you like young men.

And for the next 10 minutes, I get to listen to every other student say "And his name is Daeyoung and he likes young men."

Good times...good times....

Online Dating -- It Aint Always Fun

My friend Ryan and I got into a tiff about online dating about a week ago...one of the outcomes of that discussion was that I told him I would post some online dating horror stories. So...from March 5th, 2006, I submit the following (you're welcome, Ryan)


***

So I’m 30, and single. That doesn’t make me a bad person, and in many ways it might make me smarter than you! But, if the past few weeks of my life have taught me anything…it has taught me how pathetic it is being single, at times.

I broke up with my girlfriend about six weeks ago now…and while you may think that wound is still fresh, a person being a complete bitch to me has a way of sealing up wounds quickly…and let’s just say, I aint got no wounds. So, into the world of Yahoo Personals I went. I have tried online dating before, and in fact, met my previous girlfriend on Craigslist. Seeing as how that ended up with her being a nutcase, I thought I would try something different.

I have learned a few things the past week….most of them not good. I have learned that women, in my dating life at least, are just a wee bit selective about what they tell you…and when they tell you it. For example:

Girl #1: “Average” Body-Type Girl.

I’m not superficial. I’m not. But girl #1 and I chatted for about a week online before we met up. She had three pictures of herself on her profile, each one cuter than the last. In one pic, she is even holding a skydiving certificate, and I must say, is looking pretty hot in her jumpsuit. Additionally, in all her pics, she looks about 25 even though her age clearly stated 34 on her profile. Ah…she just looks young for her age I think. She wouldn’t lie about her looks with super old pictures…I mean, I might eventually meet her.

But lie, my friends, she did.

The friendly banter and flirting built up to our first date. I show up the restaurant first, and I am pretty nervous. I haven’t gone out with anyone new in a very long time. I was used to the ex and I either (a) going out with each other or (b) fighting and not going out at all. SO…my hands were even sweating. I was really excited…this hot and fun girl, who picked me out of all these other lucky guys, was coming to meet me. I was stolked about how short my dating period was going to be to find a new girlfriend. I had it all figured out!

The place we decided to meet happened to have valet parking, so I decided to wait in front near the attendants, about ten feet away from where people drop off their cars. I was sitting on the curb. At about 6:05, about five minutes late, I notice this blonde in a car. This must be her I think. That looks like her, at least. But when the valet opens the door, this woman, who appears to be at least 50 pounds heavier than the pictures I have been daydreaming about, rolls out of the car. As I am sitting on the curb, I don’t even get up because I convince myself That CAN’T be her…the girl from Yahoo is MUCH thinner than this and has a self-proclaimed "‘Average’ body type.” As she waddled over to me, I realized that this was her, and I was going to have to spend the next few hours telling myself that it is ok that I was lied to. I don’t care that she was heavy…I care that she misrepresented herself.

But man, during drinks, she really had some fabulous quotes. Some of my favorites were It may not look like it, but I really like to eat. I shit you not, she said this. She actually said this. And another one of my favorites had to be I literally pigged out at a buffet earlier today…I can really eat when I want to. Followed up with Although I am trying to be healthier…but it was a buffet after all. I was also let in on a little secret during our time together…and something she neglected to tell me before…"Average Body Type Girl" didn’t have a job…I guess this unfortunate turn of events combined with her weekly food allowance made it necessary for her to find some means of financial backing. I mean “She really likes to eat” after all.

NEXT!


Girl #2 – Claw Girl

Claw Girl dropped a double whammy on me the night we met. Her profile picture on her site did nothing for me, but she seemed really, really cool, so I thought I would give it a go.

As she walked up, she had a very different body than Average Body-Type Girl. She looked hot. She swaggered up to me with long, brown, flowing hair, and had a really nice glow about her. She had a beautiful smile, and her eyes really lit up when the lights from the coffee shop flickered off of them when she got within hand shaking distance. Hand…shaking…distance.

When I stuck out my hand to shake her hand hello, I noticed something odd about Claw Girl. I noticed that her hands/arms didn’t really work. Didn’t work? you ask. What do you mean, ‘Didn’t work’? Well, she had to use the back of both her hands in an attempt to clutch my hand. And to shake my hand, she somewhat moved her shoulders up and down in a shrug-like motion. Are you kidding me? I thought. Again, I didn’t care that this chick had a handicap….but you think she might have mentioned this under the “About me” section or the “Do all your appendages work?” one.

So we go in and get some coffee…and we chat. About 30 minutes into our conversation, Claw Girl drops bomb number 1.

CG: “Blah…Blah…Blah…My husband…Blah…Blah…Blah”

Me: “I’m sorry….did you just say ‘husband’?”

CG: “Oh yeah…I’m married…but we’re separated….so it’s not like I am really married.”

Me: “I see….so am I supposed to be like the mistress…and you are going to keep telling me that you are going to leave your husband…but it just isn’t the right time yet???”

She actually laughed at this although I was being serious. But we carried on the conversation…when she dropped “bomb” #2: I don’t know if you noticed opined Claw Girl, but I have a slight handicap with my arms and hands. And I held in a laugh. I’m not sure if Claw Girl didn’t think I noticed our awkward handshake, the fact that she had to pick up her coffee with the back of her hands, or that she used her feet to dig through her purse…but I decided to play along.

Me: Really? You do?

CG: Yes…I usually don’t tell people about it…

Well, that’s good Claw Girl. Having a slight physical abnormality isn’t something you should share with people you are going to meet from the internet…I was certainly glad when she let her little ruse come to an end. Needless to say…I won’t be asking Claw Girl for her hand in marriage anytime soon. OK…that was bad.

NEXT!


Girl #3: The Sieve

Kind of disgruntled by Average-Body and Claw Girls…I still had hope. The Sieve had been emailing me all week…and I must say, looked very cute in her profile pic, and was very mellow in her emails…nothing was a big deal…and we even talked on the phone a bit, I gotta say, she made me laugh. A few hours before we are going to meet up…she called me…almost in a panic: You realize I smoke, right? My profile says I do, but some people don’t notice that. Now, I don’t like smokers, but I really appreciated her honesty. I thought this was very different than Claw and Average Body Girls…and I respected her for being so forthright about it.

No problem. I tell her. Thank you for letting me know. Little did I realize at that time that she meant she smoked like a fucking bull moose…

Anyway, she ends up picking me up…and the second I see The Sieve…I realize something isn’t right. She, too, doesn’t look like her pictures….I mean, she does, except with the added bonus that it looked like she just got out of a three-hour bath and came directly over to my house…and, along the way, she also decided to slather her eyeballs with yellow dye. This chick was a walking tobacco factory…and looked AT LEAST 15 years older than her true age…28. But, if you recall…her nickname is the Sieve…NOT Joe Camel. So there must be more to this story…

We go to a bar and hang out…and she is very cool, I have to admit. I enjoyed talking with her, but I notice she is sucking down beers faster than I am…and although she looks more worn out than a 50-year-old throw rug…she does have a very smoking hot body. She is probably about 5’2” and maybe weighs about 100 lbs or so.

Four pints into the night…I’m feeling a little tipsy, and I ask her if she is going to be ok to drive. She tells me I don’t usually like showing people how much I can drink, especially on the first date…but I can really handle my liquor.

OK…I think…we’ll be fine…and we decide to head over to another bar before we go home. When we hit the next bar, she switches from beer to wine, and from sanity to insanity. She starts stumbling all over herself, and in the course of an hour, finishes her second pack of cigarettes. Granted, I am not very attracted to this person, but she HAD been fun to talk to until this point…and this point passed when she could no longer walk anymore.

I inquired about how I could get her home because not only had she smoked enough to influence the tobacco trade on Wall Street on our first date…but she had also ssssttttartted sllllurrring herrrr wwwwwwordsssss...along with walking into walls. When I suggest that I drive her home…she gets irritated with me and says: Fine…I’ll just take a cab

What’s the problem? I say

If you don’t want to spend the night with me…that’s fine.

OK…well…let’s just get out of here and worry about it later. I have no intention of sleeping with this girl…but we need to get out of this bar….and I need to get her to her home.

*Flash Forward a Bit*

By no means am I completely sober at this point…I have had about 6 pints of beer…but I am straight as an arrow compared to The Sieve, who is telling me….sorry, screaming at me…I CAN DRIVE...I CAN DRIVE...as we walk back to her car.

I wrestle the keys away from her, and I tell her that I will take care of the driving as I am actually pretty sober at this point. I start the car, and start driving home, which is literally five minutes away…I get two feet out of the spot…when The Sieve lets me in on a little secret. Why is it all these people have little secrets?

You can’t get pulled over. I kind of have a DUI…and if you get pulled over and I am drunk in my car…I am going to jail.

Um…oooooooooook I say…and am wondering how often she does this kind of thing.

And for the next few minutes she is CONSTANTLY…and I mean CONSTANTLY telling me to speed up or slow down or I cant get pulled over or Is that a cop? over and over again. I think these are things The Sieve should have thought about before pounding more than her weight in beer…but I digress.

We get back to my place…and this is not made up. She starts randomly asking me:

Do you work in a big town or in a town that is big?

I’m sorry?

Do you work in a big town or in a town that is big?

I’m not sure what you mean

It’s a yes/no question damn it! Do you work in a big town or in a town that is big?”

Well I frighteningly respond San Diego is a big town…so I guess I work in a big town?

Ahh…I see…so you are a policeman, then?

I’m sorry? I’m not following. I start wondering if my knives are locked up.

So, you’re a policeman.

Look, I really don’t know what you are talking about.

Mark, you have totally ruined the moment. Totally.

I’ve done what now?

You’ve ruined the moment.

Gee…I’m sorry.

And at this point, I am actually fearful for my life…I have no idea how nuts this chick really is…I end up sleeping in my living room with one eye open, keeping an eye out for any sort of policeman-like split personalities.

NEXT!

***

So, Ryan. There you have it. These are ALL true stories...and an example of why J-Date became an option.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

ESPN The Magazine and Writing "Teachnique"

I posted this rant about ESPN the Magazine on my fantasy baseball message board. Most of those guys are too busy pretending not to be gay to even understand it.

So, I thought I would repost it here.


I hate this fucking magazine. For some reason, I let my subscription to SI run out...and now I am stuck with hip-hop nation, all happening to center around upcoming ESPN events. Weird.

Have any of you ever read an article by Stephen A Smith? God...and we wonder (or I wonder) why kids can't write correctly. His "inner city voice" is so "edgy." Fuck him.

And no more Dan Patrick...but now I get to read about golf stories from Rick Reilly. Fuck Rick Reilly. Go back to SI, you fuck. Maybe if I were 50, or retired, I would find him somewhat interesting. But I'm not. So, I don't. Has he ever written an article that wasn't about golf, his dad, or playing golf with his dad? Has he?

The only good thing about the magazine is Bill Simmons....and my complimentary "ESPN.com Insider Pass."

But, is it worth it? It is worth shitting on the toilet and reading about The X-Games every week just so later that day I can look at the "rumor" section on ESPN.com?

I don't know...


It's funny because I look at the content, and since the audience I am writing for in my fantasy league is very "sports savvy," and "real-man (ha) laden" I know THEY know who the heck I am talking about.

Then, we have the people who read my blog...and I know who most of you are...and I know most of you won't have a damn clue who/what I am talking about...or why I am using the "f-word" so much.

On a purely "writing technique" level, this is an interesting investigation into "knowing your audience."

Would teaching this technique then become a "teachnique?"

Fuck if I know.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Boobs, Moobs, And The People Who Have Them

The back, she is still not better. So, after putting it off for as long as I could...I went to go get a massage. Why wait? Well, my last massage experience was not much fun.

This time was different, though. This time, I had a plan.

Tauni and I made an appointment, and we specifically asked for a FEMALE masseuse. Couple that with my direct instructions of "not rolling over" at any point, and I felt good to go. I wasn't going to give my neck to anyone!!!!!(previous blog reference)

AND IT WENT WELL. The chick, all 90 lbs of her, contorted herself all on, over, and what felt like THROUGH my back. She was also good for some interesting quotes such as:

Massage Lady: I used to be a ballerina while sticking her elbow directly into my side.

Me: Oh yeah?

Massage Lady: Yeah, but what good does it do me to be able to lift my leg over my head?

Me: Biting my tongue and not responding.

Massage Lady: I mean, I guess I could do it at parties.

Me: Needing to respond if she was going to keep talking about her special gift...I guess you could get some free beer out of it?

In the end, maybe it was the imagery, maybe it was the scented candles, maybe it was her sticking her fingers around my spine and yanking it out of my body...but I did feel pretty loose when I left. Not lift-my-leg-over-my-head loose, but looser nevertheless.

***

I am itching to do some training. In the brief time I have been off, I haven't changed my eating habits, and I am already putting on weight. My pecs...which I did finally have...are gone. Where they went? Back behind some lovely moobs. I prefer the term "moob" to "man boob" by the way. I'm not really sure why.

Something needs to change, though. I either need to go on a diet or get back to swimming, biking, and running every day.

If you were me, what you do?

(a) Diet
(b) Swim, bike, run through the pain
(c) Buy a manssiere and/or bro

or

(d) Respond with your own "witty" response where you cleverly make fun of my sexuality and/or my a-cup beauties?

Saturday, July 19, 2008

I'll Answer You and Your Stupid Questions

I've been getting some queries (don't get excited, Darron...I wrote QUERIES) about why I have been writing so much more. You beg and you plead...but as soon as I do it, you question why. People are never happy, I tells ya.

The reason I have been writing more is because I have had to stop training/exercising for triathlons the past few weeks. I actually was supposed to compete in one this morning, but instead, slept in until 8 and then graded papers until about three minutes ago.

It appears I have "royally jacked up my back." That really is the clinical diagnosis, in case you were wondering. I've hurt my back many times before, but this one is different. It isn't a sharp, nasty pain...it is dull and lingering, with shots of intense pain if I try to do things like "stand up straight" or "do more than walk" or "swim." Unfortunately, these are essential components to most triathlons.

So, I am on the IR...going stir crazy...and I am full of so much excess energy, I needed something to do with it. Those who can, do. Those who can't, teach. Those with bad backs, write.

So here we are. Face to face. A couple of silver spoons. I don't really know what that means, either.

I'm going to go stretch.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Seriously...Madonna?

Even for me, the dreams I have had the past three nights have been insane. Gone are the days of dreaming of naked women or scantily clad women or sex with women or women with other women. WHY DON'T I DREAM ABOUT THAT ANYMORE.

The past three nights, I have, instead, dreamed about...


Three Nights Ago:

I was team teaching with Madonna. MADONNA of all people. I never, ever dream about stupid celebrities, but for some stupid reason, I end up teaching with an 80's pop icon with bad teeth and a fake British accent.

But don't you LOVE the internet. As a lark (yes, a lark), I went on the internet to see what it meant to be team teaching with Madonna...and you know what...there is an ENTIRE WEBSITE DEDICATED TO INTERPRETING DREAMS YOU MIGHT HAVE HAD WITH MADONNA IN THEM. Are you shitting me? On this site you can also read about her dreams, too. Like anyone cares.

Seriously, what the Hell is the world coming to. So, I, of course, submitted my dream to be analyzed. Here is what I wrote:

I am a college professor.

I dreamed I was team teaching with Madonna. She was a strong teacher, but not extremely organized. I remember having to organize her materials for her: putting papers in order, some folders needed management, and paper clips. I remember lots of paper clips. I also remember thinking it was a little odd I was teaching with Madonna.

What does it all mean?


I'll keep you posted if/when they reply.


Two Nights Ago:

I had a dream that Will Smith and I were hunting and/or being chased by vampires. Can I punch myself in the face now? Two nights in a row with this celebrity bs? And what the Hell is Will Smith going to do with a vampire if he catches one? Sing it to death with his shitty music? Sadly, there is no website dedicated to dreaming about Will Smith. On the other hand, I do dream about vampires quite often, and the all mighty internet had this to say:

Vampires, for most people, represent powerful and evil creatures. Dreaming about vampires suggests that the dreamer may be feeling overwhelmed in some areas of his or her life and is struggling with negative thoughts, feelings, and actions. You may be currently concerned about ethical or moral issues and are experiencing anxiety as a result. The vampire represents personal attributes or negative habits that drain energy and resources or cause emotional exhaustion. If you are being attacked by a vampire, you may perceive yourself as a powerless victim. Interpreting this dream's message may help you to identify the source of your negative feelings and helplessness.

So, what I gather is, I need Will Smith to hold me. Solid.


Last Night:

I don't even want to talk about this one...but I am trying to be completely honest here. I dreamed about sausages. Lots and lots of sausages. I wanted to eat and order sausages at a stand...and they had SO MANY VARIETIES, I simply couldn't choose. They had hot ones, tomato-filled ones, plain ones, hot dog-esque ones...on and on and on. I just couldn't figure out which sausage to buy to satiate me. Whatever could this mean???? Hmmmm....

One site explains:

To see or eat sausage in your dream, symbolizes material values. It also represents the phallus and thus refers to sexual feelings or tension.

No shit, really? Who would ever guess that dreaming about sausage actual meant I was dreaming about dick. SURPRISE!

Luckily, another site states:

To dream of making sausage, denotes that you will be successful in many undertakings. To eat them, you will have a humble, but pleasant home.

Alas, I wasn't making them or eating them. I couldn't decide which one to fucking buy!

My only true plan of action here is obviously to never sleep again. Who knows what might "pop up" in my dreams tonight.

*please not Darron on a unicorn....please not Darron on a unicorn*

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

I'll see you in Twenty Years. Twelve With Good Behavior.

This is an odd way to tell people the truth about me. Usually, this kind of thing is discovered with a head in the freezer or a stained knife in a drawer.

I am a mass murderer.

I am.

I have single-handedly killed more grandmothers, grandfathers, cousins, friends, aunts, uncles, dogs, and neighbors than Jeffrey Dahmer ever did.

By merely attending one of my English classes, the chances of one of your loved ones dying increases ten...no...twenty fold.

I don't want to believe that my students are lying to me. In fact, I always, and I mean, ALWAYS, assume that every excuse, problem, and/or sob story that my they tell me is true. It's just easier that way.

That's why I am confessing. I've created some sort of epidemic...if there is an essay due in my class: BAM, a grandmother dies. We have a quiz coming up...UH OH, bye-bye Uncle Steve. It's getting to the point where they should just ask me: When's finals week...I need to plan my dog's demise.

I guess I never thought about it when I was a student, but teachers really do hear the same excuses again and again every semester. It's rare that I hear something new...until this summer....this summer, I have had some DOOZIES:

(1) The Crapper: My papers are due the second class begins. This discourages people from waltzing into class at the end to "turn it in on time." If the paper is turned in one second late, it goes down two grades, no exceptions. Recently, I had someone turn in a paper about ten minutes after class started because he/she had to take a dump before he/she came to class. "Sorry professor, I had intestinal issues." Nice. That was a new one!

(2) The Flu-Like Symptoms: I had a student call me and leave a message that was literally un-understandable on the date of an in-class essay. I emailed him/her and let him/her know that (a)I couldn't understand the message and (b) another essay was not turned in. This person emails me back and states the he/she had the stomach flu, and on the way to school, PASSED OUT...just PASSED OUT..and somehow managed to call ME, and didn't remember calling me. WOW...I guess I'm on speed dial! A friend then had to pick this person up, take him/her home...and consequently, he/she wasn't able to come to class. Scary. That is SOME flu.

(3) The Magician: This is not really a new one...it just has a new twist. This person claims to have missed class (and turning in an essay) because she was in the emergency room. No reason for me to say "he/she" this time...because this person was in the emergency room because of problems with her pregnancy. That's pretty serious!!! "I can't help being pregnant" she told me after returning to class the following week. Too bad I saw her on campus when she was supposedly at the hospital. Strange. How did she do that? Magic!

(4) The Half-Time Show: This person comes to class on time and finds a new reason to leave for fifteen minutes whenever we have an essay due. "I need to go get a parking permit because I left mine at home" or "I need to return a book to the library" or...wait for it... "I forgot to lock my car." Weird, the essay always comes back with this person.

I could go on and on. Maybe it's this particular crop of students, but I do have to hand it to them. They are getting more and more creative with their excuses.

***

This all got me thinking about what I would want someone to bring me if I were in jail. So, I thought I would make a Top Ten List:

Top Ten Things that I Would Want Brought To Me During Visiting Hours If I Were in Jail For Being a Mass Murderer

10: Cigarettes: Not to trade...but to smoke after I was raped.

9. Jessica Alba's Phone Number: Screw calling my lawyer..if I'm going to jail, I'm taking that one in one million shot that she would want to date me and giving her a call.

8. A Nail File: Nothing wrong with starting up a manicure business for all the fellas. I would call my place Chez Prison Bitch.

7. Fresh Baked Chocolate Chip Cookies: I just really like those.

6. Magazines like Home and Garden: I figure I might as well have a tidy cell to come home to every day after licking the shower floor clean with my tongue.

5. A Diary: So I could tell then sell my tale! Dear Diary: It was the best of times....It as the worst of times....Because Jimbo didn't use teeth today.

4. A Conjugal Visit with David Beckham. Whoops, I'm sorry...that's one of the Top Ten Things Darron Wants for His Birthday.

3. That Talking "Yo Quiero Taco Bell" Dog: I just think it would be cool to put a name to a face.

2. Some Barry Manilow CDs: Nothing like a little karaoke to liven up the Friday Night tradition of playing Hide the Baton.

1. All my students: So they would STILL have to turn their essays in on time.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

You Know You Are Getting Old When....

...you hang out with one of your friends and think to yourself: At least my hair isn't as gray as his...

...you stop telling yourself that the "blonde" hairs you are finding all over your body are "blonde."

...you have hair all over your body.

...rap and/or hip hop is noise and insulting and not something you blast out your car windows to show how "hip" you are.

...you hear a slang term that is "new to you" like "breezy" and think to yourself Who in God's name would ever say that?

...you hear a slang term that is "new to you" like "breezy" and have to act like an English Professor Dork and ask someone So, how do you use that in a sentence?

...you go surfing once, for less than an hour, almost two weeks ago and your back is still so messed up that you can hardly stand for more than two minutes at a time.

...you can call your chiropractor and leave the following message "Hey guys. It's Mark. Call me back."

...thoughts of retirement are real and something that is on your radar.

...you write a sentence like "thoughts of retirement are real and something that is on your radar" and you are serious and not joking.

...you have friendships that are older than some of your college students.

...you have a college student that wants to be more than friends and you think that sounds disgusting because he is way too young for you.

...you get into things like "bike riding" instead of "basketball."

...you write a blog about getting older (and not for the first time, mind you).

Monday, July 14, 2008

Stubbornness is Next to Stinkiness

I am a stubborn person. Not spiteful. Not vindictive. Not mean spirited. Stubborn.

Over time, I have eased up on this quality a bit, but I can hold a GRUDGE deep, deep inside my heart. I, thankfully, don't share these feelings with the people that have gotten on my shit list very often. I try, outwardly, to keep my thoughts in check. Maybe that is dishonest of me. If I confronted more of these people that have "wronged" me, perhaps I would be a more complete and/or mature person. Who wants that, though?

My dog, Maggie, on the other hand, is quite direct. I have mentioned a few times in the past how she is spiteful or leaks anal fluid out of her ass. You read that correctly. Anal fluid.

The past twenty-four hours with Maggie have been...trying. You see, we have been dog sitting another pug the past few weeks, and Maggie decided that last night, she was done being hospitable. She has been sharing her toys, room, owners, and everything else with the guest pug. But if you mess with Maggie's food, WATCH OUT! She WILL shit all over you....er...me.

***

Tauni and I decided to have Chinese food last night from the terrible, MSG and rat infested "restaurant" across the street from us. Man, that store makes so much money out of stupid convenience. We ordered chicken chow mein, and they gave us freakin' spaghetti noodles covered with teriyaki sauce. I guess we should take things like their marketing scam to drum up business as a warning that they are not really "fine dining." If you go to this Hell hole on your birthday, they will give you your age off, up to 90 years old. So, for example, if you go to this place on your 25th birthday, you get 25% off and probably kill off a couple of friends from food poisoning. Happy birthday, indeed. I can't wait to turn 91 and waltz in and DEMAND 91% off.

They also have claimed, CLAIMED, to have had "MILLIONS OF HAPPY CUSTOMERS" on their storefront window. Who are they kidding? Do you know how many customers they would have had to actually have millions of happy ones? I've done the math...it is 5.97 trillion. God, I hate them.

But, I digress.

As I was saying, we ordered food from the suck bin and ate about three bites. At that point, I am CAKED in grease and decide to take a shower. Tauni does the obvious thing...give the dog food to the dogs.

MISTAKE.

While I am in the other room, I hear Maggie finally have her mental breakdown. As the two pugs, probably the most gentle, good natured, non confrontational dogs on the planet, see the plate of food placed in front of them...Maggie attacks the guest pug, saying Bitch, you best get your paws off my food and get the F' outa my grill in Pugese.

The other Pug...about ten pounds heavier, retorts Oh no you didn't. I'm about to rip that weave out of your anal leakin' ass.

At this point, I realize that my Pugs somehow have obtained the ability to speak like stereotypically impoverished African American women (I have been watching a lot of The Shield lately, cut me some slack). I separate the dogs...and pray to god that the dog we are watching is not hurt. She's fine. I punish Maggie by putting her in her kennel, and I don't see her until about 3 PM today (no, she wasn't in there for THAT long. Tauni let her out last night before we went to bed).

Who knows what evil lurks in the mind of a pug scorned. She plotted and planned all night, and she got me back almost instantly. Maggie took a dump in front of my bathroom to remind me that (a) she is the boss and (b) nobody...NOBODY sticks her in her kennel without retribution.

***

Some things to keep in mind. Maggie is a very sweet, sweet dog, and well potty trained, but ever since the guest Pug has been here, she has done this shitting EVERYWHERE thing more and more as a way of acting out...and today, I kind of got sick of it.

So, I decide, in my "infinite wisdom:" I am leaving this shit (literally...and chuckle to myself because I find myself to be THAT clever) right here for Tauni to pick up. It really is HER dog...and SHE should take care of this.

Stubbornness. Stubbornness. I knew this was stupid and wrong, but it somehow made sense at the time. If nothing else, I guess I wanted to show Tauni where HER dog crapped and how wrong that was. Visually showing her would be so much stronger than telling...stupid stubbornness.

Yes, yes...I SHOULD have picked it up. I'm not an idiot. I SHOULD have taken care of it right away. Not only because picking it up would have been the right thing to do, but also because stubbornness and forgetfulness are a HORRIBLE combination.

***

At about 5 PM, I need to head over to my chiropractor so he can take a look at my back, and I am in the process of looking for my flip flops to wear over to his office. Ah yes, I remember...they are in the bathroom.

I walk OVER the shit that is STILL sitting right in front of my bathroom door. Man, that's gross.

Wouldn't you know it. Karma is as much of a bitch as my dog and stubbornness are times 5.97 trillion. In the what? ten seconds it takes me to go into my bathroom, get my flip flops on, and walk back out...Who forgets about the whopping pile of dung right in front of his door????

THIS GUY.

I then proceed to walk into my room, into the living room, back into my room, on some laundry, and back into the bathroom, until something strikes me:

It really smells like shit in here...and here...and here, too.

I refuse to look at the bottom of my shoes. I instead go back to where the human-sized crap WAS sitting. And it's gone. All gone. Then, and only then do I take a gander at the bottom of my flip flops and yes...I found Maggie's vindictive little gift literally staring up at me. She had eaten an eye off one of her toys, and crapped it out whole...and there it was, looking right back at me. Staring into my stubborn-ass soul.

***

At least I learned from this experience, right? I learned not to be so freaking stubborn and to just do that right thing and clean up my dog's mess, right?

Nope, I have cleaned none of the multiple shit stains up yet...because I want Tauni to see what she and Maggie made me do.

So, who wants to come over and see some egg on my face and shit on my shoes...and carpet...and bathroom...and clothes?

Not this guy.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Ludo -- Love Me Dead

I periodically get into random songs that I just think are hilarious/fascinating for some reason.

Rarely do I seek out the lyrics to the songs I like...I usually just hum along...because if I were to look at the lyrics, I might realize how terrible my flavor-of-the-month song really is.

But as a break from grading 2.5 million essays this weekend, I sought out the lyrics to Ludo's Love Me Dead:

Love me cancerously
Like a salt-sore soaked in the sea.
'High-maintenance' means
You're a gluttonous queen
Narcissistic and mean.

Kill me romantically
Fill my soul with vomit
Then ask me for a piece of gum.
Bitter and dumb
You're my sugarplum.
You're awful, I love you!

CHORUS:
She moves through moonbeams slowly
She knows just how to hold me
And when her edges soften
Her body is my coffin
I know she drains me slowly
She wears me down to bones in bed
Must be the sign on my head
That says, oh...
Love me dead! Love me dead!

You're a faith-healer on T.V.
You're an office park without any trees
Corporate and cold
Gushing for gold
Leave me alone.

You suck so passionately
You're a parasitic, psycho, filthy creature
finger-bangin' my heart
You call me up drunk
Does the fun ever start?
You're hideous and sexy!

CHORUS

Love me cancerously
Brrrot-dot-da-d-da-da!
How's your new boy?
Does he know about me?
You've got the mark of the beast.
You're born of a jackal! You're beautiful!

CHORUS
Wha' 'bout that sign on my head
That says, oh...
Love me dead!


Some of the everlasting images have to be "fill my soul with vomit," "You're a parasitic, psycho, filthy creature finger-bangin' my heart," and "You've got the mark of the beast. You're born of a jackal! You're beautiful!"

Something Shakespearean about it, don't you think?

If someone said I was born of a jackal, I might have to consider that the essence of throwing down the gauntlet.

My song of the month is gross, sickening, and filled with morose sexually perverse images juxtaposed against the eternal struggle of rejection.

Screw "Here Comes the Bride." I think I figured out my wedding song!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Connections

It is in the thirties that we want friends. In the forties we know they won't save us any more than love did. -- F. Scott Fitzgerald

(No, I'm not one of those "Quoting Dorks." I actually had to look this quote up and then cut and paste it from the website I found it on. Since I am kind of an "English Professor Dork," I then checked a couple of other websites to see if the quote was quoted exactly the same on each one. It was. So, unless they all just copying the same incorrect quote, I should be safe that this quote is right.)

His name is...no wait, that doesn't matter. I used to love him like a brother, not that I have a brother, but that's what people say...and now I can't even speak to him. There is something innately wrong with me. I know it.

I have been thinking about friendship a lot lately, and what it means to be friends with someone. Maybe it's me, maybe it's our culture, but I think I don't value my friendships as much as I should. What is important in life...my answer to that question changes daily, even hourly, when I'm trying to distract myself from a stressful moment and see the green grass.

We have all had friends based on time, location, and convenience. I like you because you're here. I am human, and I don't want to be alone. It is through my connections that I know I matter. I exist. But if I move and if the time is different, who doesn't matter anymore: me or you?

Fortunately, I am blessed. I am. I can say this person is my friend fully, completely, wholeheartedly. Time, space, convenience, don't matter. I don't feel awkward when I talk to them. I don't feel awkward when I don't.

I hate thinking I don't have time for new friends. Am I through making connections and mattering to anyone else? Will anyone else matter to me...with substance?

And what do I make of the friendships that are just puttering into space? How do I deal with pained moments: We used to laugh...What is wrong with me? Is it you?

Maybe I am supposed to save myself. Maybe it is supposed to be all "just" me. But I miss the way it was. I miss being...

Time. Space. Location.

Why even talk to him?

I don't want to be destined to be alone. Right?

Connections.

Monday, July 07, 2008

Welcome to the US and Fin' A

What did I do on my fourth...I know you've been wondering. What, oh what, could a McNastabator do? Well, I celebrated my fourth in the way my forefathers would have wanted. I got free shit.

To celebrate my freedom from tyranny, I went to the Welk Resort and was pitched buying a timeshare for a pre-promised "90 minutes." That 90 minutes turned into three hours, but that's ok...because I met one of my new favorite people in the world, Colleen.

Colleen is what people who live in a trailer park call white trash. She has, by the looks of her, been smoking for about seventy years, yet, she is only fifty. Her tan was yellow and blotchy, and she had braces. Braces. Silver braces.

I'm pretty sure metal mouth's veins stopped working some years ago...they seemed more grey than blue, and she wore nail polish that I fear Tammy Faye Baker would have found ostentatious.

The wrinkles on her face had wrinkles, which then, you guessed it, had wrinkles. It appeared that her hair, at one time, had been brown...but after so many years of store-bought coloring, it frizzed to the sides like the Scarecrow had stuck his finger in a light socket while standing in a pool of water.

Her clothes, they didn't match. Her tank top was too red, like her nails, but was also too loose. If I were a sick man, I would have been able to see both her nipples on a number of occasions...instead of the five that I chose to "take a glance."

Colleen had (or had a relative that had) done everything that Tauni and I had ever done in our lives.


I have done century rides. Her Dad's best friend growing up was Greg Lemond. They used to go bike riding together...only Greg would go much farther on the hills.

Tauni went snow boarding in Big Bear. She JUST went there, and had a "blast." It just so happens she has a timeshare there, too.

Our dream vacation is in Australia. She has been there...no wait, she hasn't....wait, she has....no, she never went. She couldn't figure out how to lie about that one. Oh yes, now she remembers. Wanting to be near her dying mother (see below) kept her on the continent...so she went to SF on vacation while her mother died instead...that way, she could be "close" to her while she passed away in San Diego.

We have a dog. So does she...TWO, in fact. Our dog is a pug, yet she had to ask "Is that a type of dog?" because she oddly didn't know. The extent of her knowledge of dogs was that she could play with the face of one of hers. She didn't know the breed (shocker)...but she did know she could stretch its face into weird shapes and sizes.

She didn't really have a way with words, either. She had trouble saying "hard" ones like "physiological" because, she claimed, "her braces got in the way." She also called "Tauni" "Tanya" fifteen times. I counted.

Don't get me wrong, she was sweet enough, as she laboriously tried to sell and resell us a time share that we were never going to buy. Her mom had just died (see above), she just had surgery, her son really needed money...she tried a lot of avenues. Alas, when we told her "no" enough times, they brought in the closer, Mike.

Mike was from Scotland, and found my logic unfathomable. He couldn't believe that I didn't want to save money. He couldn't believe that I didn't want to buy at THE Welk Resort. He was rude and insulted my mother. He punched me in the face with his words while Colleen and Tauni looked away. He had obviously attended every single one of his "hard sell" classes at Butt Fuck University, but none of it seemed to work. He left in a huff...no insult sell under his belt...and not realizing no one insults my mom except for me...what does "slunt" mean anyway?

Finally, Colleen walked us over to the office so we could pick up our free shit and wished us a Happy Fourth.

And it WAS good because not only did we walk away with $200 worth of concert tickets, two free baseball tickets, a free trip to Catalina, and free wine and wine tasting tours...I lived up to my own promise to remember every single detail about the bastards who would try to sell me something I had no intention of buying so I could blog about them later.

Mission Fucking Accomplished.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

My First Quadathlon

Last Sunday, I did my first "International" Triathlon. So, for the record, I have now done the following types of triathlons:

Sprint: Swam 800 Yards, Biked 12 Miles, and Ran 3 Miles -- About 3 years ago
Olympic: Swam 1 Mile, Biked 25 Miles, and Ran 6 Miles. -- A few months ago
International: Swam 1000 Yards, Biked 18 Miles, Ran 6 Miles -- Two days ago.

Why do they have so many different types of these things? I don't know. Different amounts of ways to mess with your body, I guess. I havent even gotten into the 1/2 Ironman and Ironman levels yet.

The best part about the triathlon I just did was it actually wasn't even a triathlon....it was a quadathlon. How? How you ask? How?

Let me paint you a little picture.

As I walked over to the start of the swim, I had one of life's defining moments.

To my right: the water. My wave was starting in about five minutes, and I needed to swim out to the race starting line. Plenty of time to get there in the grand scheme of things.

To my left: a line of about 20 open port-o-potties. And man...I really, Really, REALLY had to go to the bathroom. And not number 1, mind you.

So, here was my dilemma. If I looked to the right...I had my race. If I entered the water right then, I could get to the starting line just on time. If I looked to my left...I had salvation. I could fully release what ailed me.

Again and again I looked. Left. Right. Left. Right.

Ah fuck it...I can hold it.

And held it I did. And for the next 2.5 hours...every move I made...every stroke I took...every pedal I pedalled, every step I ran...oh, I could FEEL I was holding it.

Tauni suggested that perhaps my body would "reabsorb" it for energy during the race. Oddly, she was wrong. Damn poop in my belly wrong.

So while I competed in a triathlon on Sunday...I, in fact, did what I'm sure few to no others did. I completed a quadathlon:

I swam. I biked. I ran. I held my poop in.

I NEVER want to do that again.