Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Shvitzing on the dock of the bay

Short but bizarre dream this morning. It basically takes place at work. I'm on the phone with a customer. I'm standing up and looking out the window where it is raining. Okay, that might be a little simplistic. It is raining that kind of rain where you can't see crap and you wouldn't be surprised to see a menagerie floating by on an ark.

Outside, in place of the usual parking lot full of cars, is a lake with one or two rickety wooden docks jutting out into the swirling gray water.

The gentleman I am on the phone with is telling me about the dreary weather in Ohio. In the middle of saying "I'd rather be in Ohio than here right now" I look out the window to see one of my more recent exes standing out on the edge of the dock attempting to play an acoustic guitar, but continually being bowled over by the wind and the waves crashing up on the dock. He's in head to toe black (which is none-too-odd) and a black fedora, along with a white scarf/towel around his shoulders so as to appear like some kind of odd singing rabbi/30s gangster.

The customer on the phone is trying to get my attention, and I watch the rain and wonder how I'll get to Huntsville in such a torrential downpour. In typical dream fashion - Then I Woke Up.

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Ugh. Feeling not so good. Hoping to fight it until Sunday when Halloween is over. Considering quarantining myself now. h1n1 paranoia ftl. Better safe than sorry I suppose.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Gross generalizations that will likely annoy and/or offend, Part two.

Gonna let y'all in on a little secret, that I think most guys have secretly suspected for eons.

Women don't want nice guys.

Yeah, I said it. And before any of my sisters jump on me and call me a heretic/lunatic/any other manner of 'ic', hear me out.

What we are actually look for, only most of us don't realize it, are decent guys. The difference, you ask? The label of nice, over the past 20+ years (authors note: I am pulling this number out from a certain orifice located near the base of my spine) has come to imply a certain level of spinelessness. Basically the difference between decent and nice lies here:

Decent guys are the type who generally try to do what is right. Sometimes this involves pissing people off, and although a decent guy probably doesn't like pissing people off, he knows that sometimes it's a necessary evil.

Nice guys will try and do what will make other people happy. This is where the 'Nice guys finish last' idea comes into play. There is nothing wrong with trying to make people happy, but the reason nice guys finish last is that they tend to put themselves last, behind those around them that they are trying to please.

Meanwhile, you can put your own interests first and still be a 'decent' guy.. as long as your basic set of ethics comes into play. Guys who are not decent put themselves first without maintaining a level of morality or ethics.

I think the other universal that women are looking for is a guy who is interesting. I don't mean the type of interesting where you feel the need to make "air quotes". "Interesting" (the type with air quotes) sometimes can be interchangeable with sociopathic, emotionally fractured and in some cases downright psychotic. No, what I mean is just plain interesting.

I offer absolutely no advice on how to be interesting, because what interests women is an entirely personal thing. It varies widely from person to person. The good news is, is that with such variation, the odds of being interesting to some woman is pretty good.

In actuality, I think this theory can be applied to men as well, as well as both female and male same sex relationships. In the end I think what everyone is looking for is someone who is both decent and interesting. Those of you who have found it, hold it close and appreciate it, for it's a rare thing indeed. For those of you, like myself, who are still looking, good luck to you. We're all in this together.

Gross generalizations that will likely annoy and/or offend, Part one.

I happened to noticed something the other day that got me thinking, as I was having $30 worth of gas put into Betty, my little Aveo. I noticed that most full-serve stations I go to are employed by a number of late-teen/twenty-somethings, most of whom are sporting a wide selection of facial jewellery, tattoos and asymmetrical hairdos.

Now first, let me point out that I'm generally a fan of these things, so this is by no means a rant against self-expression or 'whatever happened to decency blah blah blah'. One has nothing to do with the other in my honest opinion. But it struck me funny that of all the different types of service-sector industries, gas stations are the only ones that seem to employ no dress code whatsoever. (although there have been times when I've wondered if maybe there IS a dress-code that specifically states the requirement of silver appendages. Either that or the hiring managers have punk fetishes)

Some might argue with me "well, what about CD stores, and used clothing stores?" These places are different, as the clientele are most likely the types of people (like myself) who tolerate, if not encourage, such adornment. The people in front of the counter making their purchases are most likely not much different from the folks ringing them up.

Fuelling stations (thank you, Thesaurus) however, cater to pretty much every walk of life you can imagine, with the exception of the homeless (who, one would assume, don't have vehicles, unless they are living in them) and shut-ins (who generally lack need of vehicles, as they don't really go anywhere anyway). With such a wide clientele, one would expect that there'd be many who are not at all sympathetic and even hostile towards such forms of self-expression.

What does it mean? It seems to me like an interesting indication of the type of hold that the fuel industry has on society. It's a neat little 'fuck-you' type of aesthetic, really. "We don't have to make our employee adhere to some kind of socially acceptable dress-code or uniform just to please you, the consumer. I mean, what are you going to do... NOT BUY GAS???"

Frankly I think most consumers are too pissed by the prices to care, anyway.

Ladies and gentlemen who are or have been in the industry, please feel free to tell me to STFU if you feel I don't know what I'm talking about. but please, elaborate on why. Discussion is FUN.

Friday, October 23, 2009

One Day I'll make some honest rock and roll...

I've been invited to sing and play at the community center tomorrow night and frankly, I'm freaking out a bit. It's been a while since I've played in public in any venue bigger than an open mike night.. and even that was months ago. I've tentatively picked out a song to play. I know I will change my mind seventeen times in the next 36 hours before I finally settle on the song I was going to play in the first place. I have mixed feelings about getting a one-song 'set'. On one hand, I only have to practice and memorize one song. On the other hand, if I fuck that one up, there is no redemption.

On the other hand though, this is a very small town, and I'm pretty sure that the audience will be devoid of record label talent scouts. So it basically comes down to shits and giggles, right folks?

Had an enjoyable evening out for dinner tonight. Learned that there is such a thing as an over-attentive server, but hey, it's still preferable to someone who ignores you all night. I've got to almost wonder if our server at one point got written up for inattentiveness and was trying over-compensate? Just every time we turned around *BAM* there she was.

I had a few hours to kill between work and dinner, so on my break I took a cold and soggy jaunt up to Cottage books, and was reacquainted with the reason why I generally avoid that place. Simply put, I cannot go in there and buy ONE book. Before I had taken 10 full breaths in the place, I had a handful of books. Not that I'm complaining about having extra reading material. The book I'm reading right now is called 'Rage in Harlem'. It's about.. guess what... rage in harlem. Now, not having any experience with 1970's inner cities, for all I know this could be a dead accurate depiction, but to me it reads like it was written by a white guy who watched too many blacksploitation films. Whole lotta 'Lawds' being thrown around.

So now I'm about four chapters into 'Fargo Rock City' by Chuck Klosterman. Everytime I read anything by this guy I want to hunt him down, marry him and have vaguely nerdy babies with great sarcastic wit and fantastic taste in music and other pop culture. His books tend to ignite in me an intense desire to travel and/or start a rock band and indulge in any number of vices.

I also picked up a copy of 'Sophie's world' and just in time for halloween, a copy of the complete works of Edgar Allen Poe, complete with insanely fun 60's inspired cover.

Books stores are one of the few retail type stores that actually produce a physiological response when I enter them. I quickly become overwhelmed when I step into one. My shelves at home are become packed again, and I fear I may need to invest in another set of those lovely particle board cheapies. One day I will divest myself of any and all particle board furniture in my home. I've grown to loathe it. One day will come where I look around my home and see only real wood.. that will be the day I know I have made it. Particle board seems to represent to me everything I hate about mass consumerism. Cheap. Shoddy. Artifical. Lacking in craftsmanship. The thought makes me shudder. So does going into debt for furniture. Damned if I do, and so forth.

Oh my.. seems I've rambled on for more than my share this evening. sleep sleep, breakfast, oilchange, coffee with the danno, rehearsal, and the stage await.

Night, all.

Monday, October 19, 2009

"I'll drink the water that you leave..."

Although I love my little house, there is one thing it lacks that i knew I would miss, especially in these coming winter months, and that is having a bathtub. Although I must openly acknowledge how much time I save by spend 10 minutes in the shower as opposed to an hour in the bath, on chilly quiet nights like these, I'd kill to be able to pop in the plug, run some scalding hot water and sink down beneath the surface.

Please, I ask, do NOT start in on the whole 'sitting in your own filth' thing. If you're bathing/showering often enough, there should only be a minimal amount of filth to soak in, and I think it's safe to say it would be well diluted. My god, I work in an office, not a coal mine. How much dirt can I possibly accumulate in one day??

Hooboy. If the kids weren't in bed, I'd consider sneaking over to my parents place with a good book and some bubbles and soaking over there. Their's is one of those fantastically deep tubs with the slanted back. Ohm. There's nothing worse than a bathtub that isn't deep enough.

Back when I was hospitalized with my first DVT, I was in the hospital for a good four weeks. Although I received or gave myself (depending on how I was feeling) a 'wash' each day, there eventually came a time when it was decided a real wash was needed.

Three weeks bedridden makes one a little ripe and uncomfortable.

Since i was not able to stand or walk at this point, I was given access to the special whirlpool bath in the hospital. It's a tub that lets you remain in an upright sitting position (similar to a kitchen chair) and fills to roughly shoulder-depth.

And there are jets EVERY-FREAKING-WHERE. Oh my god. The thought of this tub almost makes me want to get sick again. Almost. Since then it has been my dream to have something similar built when I eventually own my own house. If not, just one huge whirlpool tub, or a old-fashioned clawfoot tub.

I won't lie and deny that pretty much every place i have lived, I have sabotaged the emergency drains by turning them upside down, stuffing plastic bags in them, encasing them in dollar-store contraptions, all in an effort to make the deepest bath possible. I've also on occasion, allowed myself to nod off in the tub while reading, only to wake cursing after I've dropped my book in the water, or shivering because the water temperature has dipped.

Nope, nothing would please me more at this very moment than to slip into a hot bath.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

For the sake of writing something.. anything


So, after about a week of trying to get my cat back after she ran away and eventually ending up back at her former owner's place, I managed to get her home.

Saturday night, the oldest girl left the back door open and both cats got out. Spartacus came back, Pantera did not. She went back to the old owners place again. This cat is not happy here. So I made the decision to let her stay and see if she can be found a new home, with people who have more time to dedicate to really taming her.

I use the word tame in a particular context here. I've been reading 'The Little Prince' to the girls at bedtime lately, and I'm moved by the passage between the little prince and the fox that he meets in the african desert. The fox asks the little prince to tame him, and the little prince asks him to explain the meaning of 'tame':

"To me, you are still nothing more than a little boy who is just like a hundred thousand other little boys. And I have no need of you. And you, on your part, have no need of me. To you I am nothing more than a fox like a hundred thousand other foxes. But if you tame me, then we shall need each other. To me, you will be unique in all the world. To you, I shall be unique in all the world."

I feel like I've failed her in some way, but not having the time to dedicate to becoming unique in all the world to this troubled little feline. It's silly perhaps, but I do.

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Took the girls to Value Village yesterday to gather stuff for halloween costumes. Last year I totally wussed out and for the first time actually bought them costumes, which pretty much goes against everything I stand for, Halloween-wise. Costumes, in my world, are to be made or gathered together from various components scavenged throughout the house, garage etc.

This year I've managed to put together what should be some pretty decent, unique costumes for the girls. The older one is getting more open to the fun and scary side of halloween, which pleases me to no end. The younger one took some more convincing, and although her costume isn't a scary one, it's a nice departure from the swirling Disney Princess/Hannah Montana vortex I usually have to wrestle my way out of.

I've long discouraged the girls from these unimaginative and corporately-sponsored options, mainly because there will be a good dozen other Disney princesses in the classroom, and if you can't stand out at Halloween, then well, what is the point?

I will note though. Taking on Value Village on a Saturday, two weeks before halloween, with two small children in tow, is not something I recommend, unless you're a big fan of migraines.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Betcha thought...


You probably thought I was upset. That I fled the scene with tears in my eyes.

You probably thought I was crying

As I turned my head, and stifled a giggle and a smirk.

Wonders never cease.

Monday, October 12, 2009

I woke up this morning...


... with a sense of foreboding and an empty feeling in the pit of my stomach.

Man I hate that. I think too much.

*shrug* It'll pass.

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In other news, our local radio station is holding a contest to win a 'Mid-Life Crisis Camaro'. The sounder (you know, that thing that tells you go be the fourth caller) is Bruce Springsteen's version of Pink Cadillac.

In what universe does that make any sense?

They dropped the ball on this one, as the obvious choice would be the Dead Milkmen's Bitchin' Camaro.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

This heavy pen.

I want to start writing more. A friend convinced me this evening to start work on a film script based on a premise that another friend and I had cooked up long ago. It's very loosely based on actual events, and fodder for one of those zany comedy films. Production rights go to the first who can get Tina Fey to play me.

I make various attempts at writing but find I have a difficult time finishing anything I start. I have an excellent middle, or a beginning, then struggle to make the other parts fit. A story I started six months ago, borne out of much rage and hurt that I was feeling at the time, started out strong, but as my feelings towards the people in my real life whom the characters were based mellowed, I've lost the emotions that drove my inspiration and as a result the direction that I was taken changed and kind of stalled.

Maybe this is why I'm feeling restless lately. It could be strictly hormonal, but I feel as though I'm on the verge of breaking out of what could be described some days as a rut and others as a comfortable routine. I think it's because winter is coming soon and I need something to occupy me during the long months when I tend to become depressed and feeling invisible. Last winter I had a lot of drama and such on my plate, but for the first winter in a long time, I was anything but depressed. Sometimes boredom can be worse for the psyche than stress.

Boredom = Nothing.
Stress = Something.

Remember that movie, the NeverEnding Story and how the Nothing was slowly destroying Fantasia? I've always interpreted (as I imagine many others have too.. it's not exactly a subtle metaphor) Fantasia as a metaphor for the imagination. 'Nothing' destroys imagination, inspiration. Drama, though at times unpleasant, is something.

Boredom = Nothing
Drama = Something
Boredom destroys imagination, Drama, whether positive or negative, is inspiration, if properly harnessed.

Not that I'm going to go out seeking it. But I want something that's more than nothing. I'm restless is all.

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My pants don't fit. Again. This is fabulous. Except that I'll probably need to go shopping for new pants AGAIN in a couple of weeks. Thank Christ for thrift stores.

The long, often frustrating struggle with the weightloss is paying off. I'm in better shape than I've been for years. I need to work on this body dysmorphia I seem to have developed, because I still see the same person in the mirror that I was 2.5 years and 50+ lbs ago. Although I've gained some level of confidence... it's still based on what people have told me. I don't see it, unless I look really really hard.

Frankly, I get annoyed with myself anyway for not always liking how I look, because the intelligent part of me knows that there are so many other things that are more important in life. But I still want to feel beautiful in my own skin. It comes and goes, fleetingly. Mostly I still feel like an awkward 14-year-old most of the time. It's something I'm trying to work on.. I'd love to be one of those women that no matter their shape or size, will walk into a room knowing that they are sexy as hell, inside and out. I know it, I just don't KNOW it. I'd like to realize it before it's no longer true. :-P

Monday, October 5, 2009

of marriage and babies and such.

I came to the conclusion this weekend as I witnessed two very dear friends of mine pledge themselves to each other before friends and family that although I love the idea of weddings, in reality, when it comes down to attending I'm not a fan at all. I just seem to forget this when not there in the moment.

I'm infatuated with the idea of getting dressed up and the joviality and the romance of it all. This fantasy tends to shatter in the moment when I am faced with the grim reality of my own social awkwardness. That awkwardness was compounded this Saturday by a grinding headache resulting from a not-so-pleasant encounter with my car door. Imagine if you will, there I am feeling rather sexy and sophisticated, dressed to a tee, and as I lean into the car to place the gift in the backseat.. WHAM! Head meets door hard enough to draw blood, tears and a few choice obscenities. Life likes to take me down a notch every so often.

That said, it was a lovely ceremony. My own grumbles about social conventions aside, it's heartening to witness the hope and optimism that weddings bring, especially when you can see excitement written on the faces of the newlyweds as clear as though it had been written in sharpie marker.

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Yesterday while picking the girls up from their father's place, I ventured up to the highway to get gas and return some movies. It was there we had the unsettling experience of happening upon a pro-life demonstration that was taking place in front of the mall. My girls, both competent readers for their ages, began asking about the various placards reading such things as 'Abortion Kills Children'.

I can only imagine what was going through their heads. Was this something they should be concerned about? Was it perhaps some monster that eats small children in the night? What a subject to be broached on a Sunday afternoon in the car. *sigh* I attempted to handle the situation as diplomatically as possible, explaining as simply as I thought necessary for a 6 and 8 year old to process.

Being what I consider pro-choice (not the same as pro-abortion) I had a fantasy of running into Staples for bristol board and magic marker and creating my own placard in the name of presenting a dissenting opinion. (for some reason this fantasy involves me in a lawnchair smoking a cigarette - there must be some subconcious association between smoking and rebellion at work here). It could have been an opportunity to teach my children about speaking out on your beliefs. It could have also been an opportunity for my children to witness their mother in the midst of an idealogical melee, which wouldn't have been quite so cool.

So I drove home, feeling somewhat impotent and disappointed in myself. For as much as I may disagree with the folks out on the highway, they had the conviction to stand which was more than I could say for myself that afternoon.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

It Figgers

I start anew, and get back into blogging and my internet goes down at home.

I think they want money or something. Bastards.

*sigh*

FML.