2013 15 September :: 8.47pm
:: Music: Man on Fire-Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros
PhDing and teaching. It involves lots of reading. And grading. Eventually, there will be writing. This year marks my 4th academic publication, and 2014 will hold conference presentations 7-9 at major conferences.
I really hope there will be some semblance of a good job at the end of all of this.
1 bag of frozen tater tots
1/2 onion diced
3 cloves minced garlic
1 can large black olives, pitted, strained, and diced
2 tbsp. basil pesto
cayenne pepper to taste
1 fuckload (but not too much) butter
lightly saute everything but the tots. veggies should not be completely cooked, just softened.
toss sauteed mixture with frozen tots in large mixing bowl.
evenly distribute in a casserole dish (metal works better than glass). cover with tin foil.
bake for 30 mins at 425. uncover. bake an additional 15 mins (or until desired crustification is achieved)
don't burn your mouth, and devour indiscriminately.
welp. we're here. i was pretty excited on the drive out. there was some drama the night we were supposed to get here, which delayed our arrival until yesterday, so we spent the night in reno. it also put me in a less pleasant space than what i probably should be in. but, it was worked out (ish), so i just need to get over it.
then this morning, mom called to tell me that uncle pete died. i wasn't nearly as close to him as bruce was, but it's still a shock. yet another reminder that none of us are here forever, and something rather opposite a boon to my emotional state. there's still so much in the air. i can't stop trying, that will be the end of it. so i will keep trying. because i have to. but it just doesn't have that thrill of adventure that i was hoping for. it's just a constant oscillation between being awestruck by the fact that i'm here (and here is absolutely amazing, by the way), and mortified that i've made a terrible, terrible mistake.
so, it's great that i'm alone and i'm here and it's super neat. and it's awful at the same time.
i don't know. just keep trucking. that's the main thing.
2013 26 April :: 12.21am
:: Mood: the usual
:: Music: David Bowie - The Next Day
Auschwitz, this one's for you
i don't even know if you bother to read this shit.
hell, i don't even know you bother to do this shit. so, i obviously am not reading yours. so, no. odds are good you won't be reading this.
but, nonetheless, this comic made me think of you. and i hope it helps. i'm somewhat afraid to encroach upon some of the touchy, weight-related subjects. but this seemed important.
WE have body issues. societal cultures and norms and gender constructs, in addition to inferiority complexes and mental and physical shortcomings and inabilities. but we are all people. and people need to get better at being a society that thrives on support of one another as opposed to condemnation of those that are, well, not us.
(my post about modern medicine and society's struggle with death is closely related, but for a later time.)
the even bigger issue is that you could rack up a $70 tab, after getting a discount, and each person can still only tip 67 cents? c'mon, people. the minimum total tip on that should be at least $10.50, regardless of how awful your experience was. and i suppose that was the joke, them only leaving a $2 tip ... but still, i just get so mad at people who make math harder than it is.
i'm really starting to hope this california thing works out. although, now that i'm finally building some connections in town, it seems kind of stupid. but, it's a once in a lifetime opportunity. i should take it.
and i know what dad thinks, not that he's necessarily right or wrong, but i'm doing it anyway. i just don't have anywhere to put my shit.
shit in one hand and want in the other
see which fills up first.
well, my hands are full, and i'm sick of this shit. time to take matters into my own damn toilet.
i'm sick of shitting in other people's toilets only to have them bitch about the water bill.
time to build my own goddamn toilet.
i want my own goddamn toilet.
i guess what i'm trying to say is that i want the shit on my hands to be on my own terms. because, fuck this shit. and - shitting aside - fucking won't happen on its own. i suppose that means i need to take other matters in my own hands as well.
meanwhile, in maryland
it's about 55 out right now, mostly sunny. just got done with a hilly 6 mile bike ride. started using nicotine lozenges this morning. they're weird. i still want to smoke. but at least i don't reek of cigarettes? it's only for the rest of the week, so i'm sure i can manage.
so many good things: first burger and fries at five guys (oh. my god. seriously right up there with mr. burger). went to a concert in annapolis last night, which was fun. the great and powerful oz was surprisingly enjoyable. going to hang with kevie-poo on friday! good things.
it's been hard, too, though. libby is looking better, and is really taking her treatment seriously. it's difficult to watch her struggle, but it's important that i get to, first to better understand what she's going through, but also just to make it real for me. as much as i got from the literature they gave us, and the conference calls, and everything else, it wasn't real until i got to see her have to eat a meal (and entirely too real on sunday when i had to eat every meal with her and clear my plate every time. i did well, up until dinner, when i got a to-go box. but we talked it out). she's a trooper, and ryan is amazing with her. she's in the best hands she could possibly be, so it's nice to have that reassurance. it sucks to realize that i'm in no fit state to help much of anyone, and that i probably would not be the best person to have around her all the time, but at least i can help in my own small ways while i'm here. she did say she was impressed by and glad that we were being so reasonable and chipper about everything. so that's good. and i'm also immensely thankful that she's being so reasonable and chipper about it. that can't be easy. apparently a lot of people with eating disorders tend to be extremely hurtful and argumentative. she doesn't always like the rules that she has to follow, or our implementation of them, but at least it stays calm and cool, instead of breaking out into yelling matches all the time. she still has a long way to go, though.
had a good talk with ryan last night about my life as well. seeing a live show really made me want to play again. and he joined the burgeoning ranks of people that hands down say i just need to go back to school. i really need to look into that program at mtsu. there are other options too. basically depends on which program feels like the best fit and where i want to wind up geographically. murfreesboro, tn; denver, co; new york, ny; baltimore, md? i dunno. i'm really leaning toward tennessee right now. just need to dig deeper and talk to the universities.
we'll see. in the meantime, i'm enjoying vacation. and riding a bike in a t-shirt and shorts, when i would otherwise be freezing balls back home. as quirky and weird as ryan can be about things, it's nice to see the other side - what life could be like, if i wanted to have a cleaning lady and a dog walking lady and two brand new cars in my custom-built castle. sure beats the hell out of where i'm at now. although, i would probably do things a little differently, even if i had the money. but still, inspiration. potential goals to aspire to. better than wallowing in my shit-hole life like i have been the past three years.
although i realize quite well that my life is nobody's responsibility but my own, i still wonder why it falls to me. if this life is such a gift, why does it usually seem like a hopeless pile of shit that is apparently mine to sort through. and better yet, even if you do go and get messy and start trying to make sense of it; trying to make it better, it is the job of the rest of the world to keep piling more shit on.
even worse is the realization that you're doing it to everyone else too. all of this shit that you never asked for, but has been thrust upon you for caretaking, is rolling downhill. even if your intent is to leave the smallest footprint possible, the accidental shit that you produce, or is heaped upon you, winds up landing on the ones near to you that also don't deserve it. so it comes off as you being a lazy son of a bitch, that can't adequately handle their shitload. and then the neighbors hate you. the family loves you (if you're lucky), but hates to see you struggle, hates to see you continually fail, and honestly - hates dealing with your excess shit all the time.
then it seems impossible, insurmountable, just looking at what effort you already did put into it, back when you bought into their system and their propaganda, and convinced yourself that their dream was your dream too, when you still wound up here, so dismally short of their goals, or yours, or basically anyone's. what makes a goal attainable? what differentiates the good aspirations from the bad? does it even fucking matter when you're not going to reach any of them, regardless of whether or not that's actually what you want and need and are capable of?
i know that life's not all bad. it's also not all sunshine and rainbows and happy feels. these are inevitable facts of existence in this world. important, in that you can't appreciate the good without a taste of the bad. and even some things that are unpleasant can ultimately turn out to be beneficial.
but it's really hard to keep trudging on when you don't even know where you're going. and if the way that you're headed is the 'right' one. and when you come to realize that after all that trudging, you're no further along, no closer to the destination that isn't even really there. it's so hard to keep going. because you don't know what the point is anymore, or if there ever was one to begin with.
i realize that they don't necessarily sound that different as you change them, but that's because it's just a basic tone generator. it would be fun to be able to compose something that is a combination of different pitches, and play around with how altering the waveforms would change the harmonic interaction. some reverb would also be nice.
i have successfully stopped complaining, simply by forgetting that today is valentine's day. several times. even after many reminders.
i honestly like valentine's. if halloween is a woman's excuse to dress up all slutty, then valentine's - in my perception - has always been the best excuse to be overly, disgustingly chivalrous; which i enjoy immensely.
the prevalence of suitable subjects upon which to inflict my chivalry has been minimal of late, so - being single - i have grounds enough to bitch about another hallmark holiday, but the truth is: i like this one. i just haven't had cause to celebrate it in awhile. so i forgot.
halfheartedly seeking sexy rumpus. sorry for the awkward.
finally met someone that i like. confessed to my attraction. feeling was reciprocated. i expressed my reluctance to pursue things further, due to both of our lives being big piles of shit at the moment, which need to be sorted out prior to any involvement. she agreed.
not sure if making sound decisions based on logical analysis of situation
or habitually blocking own cock
seriously, i've done it before. but that was unintentional. i feel that the intent in this scenario is important. either way, shit's complicated, man.
i was bad, and i took a few days off from writing. AND it was my ‘weekend'. so, double boner on that one. i am really afraid that my word count is not going to be where i want it to be come december first, but i can't let that stop me from continuing on, as i have for the past couple of days. so, what's happened since last we met? a new president was elected. by which i mean, an old president was reelected. i voted for him the first time. i am disappointed with how things turned out, so i did not do it a second time. i mean, i understand that making changes takes time, especially if the legislature is constantly fighting you on every last detail. i'm not disappointed with what he's done as president so far, i'm disappointed in the change i've seen in him as a person. he has, effectively, allowed his office to shape his conduct, rather than conducting himself truly, while guiding the office and nation in the direction of those goals. he realized that he had to play the game, or risk losing it all, and decided to play along rather than fight the system.
i'm just sick of bipartisan politics in general. i hate that people assume they have to vote for one or the other, because nobody else can possibly win. that's not how the system is supposed to work. and the figurehead for their respective party just has to parrot whatever their advisors tell them. maintain a satisfactorily contrary stance to whatever the other guy (or gal) is doing. this is all a giant - well, not conspiracy, but something like it - where the bickering and pandering are nothing more than smoke and mirrors to distract us from the fact that nothing is happening. i don't like to complain too much about it, because i really have no good solution to offer up. but it's still really fucking frustrating to be living in this system that is so obviously broken, and not be able to do anything about it, whether i voted or not. (but i did. even if it's all a crock of shit, i'm still going to vote. the knowing that it doesn't matter also makes things easier for me, as i can randomly pick who i want to vote for based solely on the attractiveness of their name. it's an important consideration in a candidate that will otherwise have no bearing on my daily life. if you're going to be forced to hear the name constantly for the next ... however long they're in office, it might as well be a kick ass name, right?) for the most part, though, i try to ignore the news and politics and current events. yeah, okay, so my finger isn't on the pulse, but i'm relatively happy. certainly much happier than i would be if i actually had to sit there and gag down all of the malarkey that the heads on the tv, or the editors in the paper, or the people on the radio are trying to feed me all the time. no me gusta.
words are awesome. i've always had a love for them, whether innate or nurtured by my family is hard to tell. probably a mixture of both. i learned a lot from my parents, probably more dad than mom, but despite her many assertions that she's stupid, my mom is pretty darn intelligent. she just struggled in school a lot. my sister is the same way. but dad was really the one that pushed me to learn new words, because that's what my grandparents did with him, and they in turn did it to me as well. any opportunity to learn or teach a new word was unquestionably seized. we used to make paper airplanes at my grandparents' house, and shoot them across the opening where the stairs went down to the basement. the ‘ocean', as i had apparently chosen to dub it. so, you would fly your plane over the ‘ocean', then retrieve it and try to make changes so it could fly better. this is when my grandpa taught me the word ‘modify', as he described to me how i was making modifications to my plane to improve it. might not seem like a big thing as an adult, but you ask most five year olds what modify means, and you're more than likely to be disappointed. kids at school would shun me as a know it all, merely because i knew all these big words that they didn't, and it made them feel inferior. okay, so i was also an unintentional know it all. it was like a sickness that i couldn't stop myself from spewing forth. once i got to spelling bee age, i did very well. in 8th grade i won the school spelling bee and went to regionals, only to be ousted by the word dressage. on the one hand, i really overthought it, but on the other hand i don't think you can really hold my lack of knowledge about hands-free equestrian techniques, and how to spell them, against me.
so yeah, it was never really a question. i was super into words. i read constantly. like, seriously all the time. books were an escape from reality, which was both better and worse than i realized at the time. retrospect is a hell of a thing. anyway, most people that hit a word they don't know or understand while they are reading, will use context clues to make their best guess and keep moving. any word i encountered, whether reading, or in daily life, i wanted to know. i would run off and grab the webster's and learn me that word. this practice aided me on my way to loquaciousness, and was a remnant of grandpa and grandma once again. but i still did it when they weren't making me. i suppose at first it was out of habit (which is an excellent habit to be in, by the way), but i also had a very strong internal compulsion for doing so. while my reasoning was inherently and tragically flawed, i'm still okay with it because it taught me so many words. WORDS! glorious, confusing, limitless words. the logic was as follows:
i got misunderstood a lot. i would try to communicate the idea that was happening inside my brain to someone else, but by the time it got to their brain and they responded, it was clear that they JUST DIDN'T GET IT. i mean yeah, granted, my brain things are pretty complex sometimes, but still, you should be able to understand. communication breakdown. every damn time. thus, my thought process was that, since they didn't understand what i was trying to say, i must not be saying it right. i must not be using the right words. there must be better words out there with which to more accurately (precisely? i always get those two confused) convey my message. only then, once i've unlocked the secret words, will they understand what the hell i'm saying. this was the start to what has become a lifelong interest in the study of communications. and i was WAAAY wrong. there's a lot more to communication than using the right words (although they prove beneficial from time to time). hell, sometimes we communicate using absolutely no words at all. it's just that crazy, communication. humans are complex beings, and getting more than one of them together and having them exchange ideas and information complicates what goes on exponentially.
it took me many years to learn that even my most awesome, incredible, amazing words could do nothing to save this exchange of thought. so, i spent a lot more time than is recommended, learning a whole bunch of really sweet verbiage anyway.
i think that not enough people socialize physically. by which i mean, conversational intercourse, not sexual intercourse. face to face. not enough people do that. it's easy to slip into the technological distractions, but really, slow it down. communication is not just a matter of saying words and hearing words. it is a complex organism. (sidenote - girl in middle school was largely illiterate; small town, remember. said ‘orgasm' in biology ALL the fucking time. crazy shit. especially amongst a bunch of pubescence addled adolescents). being a communication student, i've been taught - and it is also self evident to lots of people - that there is much more to communication than simply the words you say. there are colloquial expressions, DIFFERENT LANGUAGES, body language and other physical communication, sarcasm, jokes, the list goes on. and with all of these different ways of communicating, as well as the fallibility of any persons involved in the act of communication, it quickly becomes easy to see why communication is not only vitally important, but so frequently miscarried.
when i was a child, i resented childhood. i struggled to get along with other children. most adults were intolerable. some adults were fucking amazing. kids are stupid and smart at the same time. they are stupid in their lack of logic and wisdom, but they are more perceptive than most adults give them credit for. i despised those adults that were unwilling to admit my cunning, and would continually patronize me in our discourse. my family spoke to me as an adult, and my linguistic and intellectual propensities progressed accordingly. you've seen it happen time and again. there are just those people that take on this different voice when they speak with children. the tone changes immediately. not that they think the kid is stupid. that is just how they communicate with kids. they can't help it, don't know any better, and worse yet, do not realize that they are even DOING IT. when i would reply with vestiges of the ‘adult' tone, they would do one of two things. they would either change their approach, accommodating this new development (an important aspect of effective communication), or they would get confused, and not know what to do with a precocious child. and continue to baby-talk me until i turned eighteen. unfortunate souls.
i had an extremely difficult time finding a way around this predicament, especially as a child. i've encountered a handful of people who dummy down, even with adults. there's no way around that. those people are a lost cause. do not bother trying. they are too embedded in their superiority to ever communicate effectively. initially, i thought that my difficulty putting the fairly complex ideas that were in my head into the heads of others stemmed from a deficiency in my description. if i could only find the right words to put the idea in, then everyone would understand. i was wrong, but it's easy to see how a kid would reach such a conclusion. at which point, my fix to the problem was to LEARN MORE WORDS. if you can't find the right words, they must be out there somewhere, so it's just a matter of learning them, and then utilizing them in the conversation, right?
not quite, although it availed me somewhat in my academic career. yet, my status as a veritable glossary/thesaurus did not prevent the lack of communication. i could use bigger, more obscure, more precise words to describe what i was thinking and feeling to another person. but it didn't help like i thought it would. because i failed to consider the other person. do they know that word? are they even FUCKING listening? maybe. maybe not. knowing more words can help, if the complementary party is adequately educated about and receptive to those words. ultimately, if they are uneducated, or unreceptive, you can know all the words you want to, and it is not going to make a damn bit of difference. this is a dead end road. it took me longer than i would care to admit (but shorter than depressingly many) to come to this realization. still, it is an important thing to acknowledge. it takes two to tango, as the saying goes, and it really holds true in the accurate transference of thought. that's where shit got crazy deep.
they also say (i love the infamous ‘they'. not sure what it means, but it stealthily maintains impunity by being ambiguous) that you should walk a mile in someone else's shoes before judging them. the primary emphasis of this parable, i believe, is that you should stop and wait a second before judging other people. lest you be judged yourself, as it were. this is an excellent sentiment, which i support, and would be immensely helpful to those patronizing assholes that can't handle precocious children, which i mentioned earlier. fuck you and your judging eyes that see me as nothing more than a kid. but i believe there is a deeper meaning here, which many miss out on. okay, we get it, judging others is bad. BUT. if we aren't judging others, what shall we do with ourselves? this is the key. if you are busy judging another, you can't possibly stop to actually listen to what they have to say. there is no way in hell you can hear the truth in what THEY are communicating to YOU, when you do nothing but focus on YOUR flawed perception of THEM. why can't WE just be PEOPLE? it's not us and them. it's us and slightly different us. but not TOO different, because they usually don't want to be bothered with listening to each other either. they (and we) would much rather fight over who is right (obviously, we are), than take a minute to check their ego and listen to all of the different perspectives on whatever given issue the fighting revolves around. the truth is usually somewhere in the middle. most people don't want the truth. they want a fight. they want drama.
well. they can go fuck themselves. i'm trying to work with you people, but nothing is ever going to work until you learn to reciprocate. unfortunately, it is not easy to let go of. i often catch myself doing the same judging and ignoring that everyone else is also guilty of. we all do it. to an extent, it can't be helped. it's human nature.
i'm not looking to eradicate it, though. i'm just seeking a workaround, for when you really need it, and have a party on the other side of things that is willing to also do some of the legwork and effectively communicate. those are unfortunately rare.
i think it's interesting that they chose november as the month to do this thing. not that there's a better or worse month to do it. but there are a lot of things happening in the month of november. thanksgiving, of course, which i suppose is somewhat helpful. any month with a holiday would probably be good, so long as you're getting time off of work or school ... whatever you may have going. but there's a lot of stuff going on. i didn't participate in halloween at all this year, and i'm still overwhelmed. some halloween parties are still happening this weekend. two holidays in one month, what?! that shit is crazy. more importantly, it's a presidential election year. sure, there's an election every year in november, but being a nationwide vote, it always draws a lot more attention and time. makes me curious why they chose november.
i suppose i should get my take on the election situation squared away. i have always hated news media. always. not that i think they are an unimportant thing, or that we shouldn't have them. but... i just innately dislike them. it pains me to say it as a film kid (i initially declared my major as broadcasting, but changed to film halfway through my freshman year based on the course offerings in those respective programs at my school), but i despise what they have become. not all news is bad. it's good to know what is going on in the world. that has long since (apparently) ceased to be the focus of your typical news station. fox, i'm talking to you. i hate to single out fox, because they have such direct political connections, which is what most people typically infer from such statements. i'm not anti-republican/conservative/whatever. i'm against broadcasting things that aren't news as if they are news. nbc, you are guilty of the same crime, although i find your broadcasts slightly more palatable because they tend to align more with my personal views. but i'm still not going to watch. you are all assholes. asses that disagree with each other, have an undeserved amount of popularity amongst the masses, and abuse that celebrity to your own ends. i hate it, so fuck you. as much as i might be socially pressured to be ‘in the know,' i have found that i am far happier as a human being when my finger is furthest from the pulse. this is occasionally to my detriment, yes, but at least i don't have to stomach all the other bullshit that everyone else gobbles up. i can live my life blissfully free from the ravages of supposed intelligence. the expectations are lower. i don't feel that knowledge of current happenings, the latest dish, what have you, should be indicative of your intellectual capacity. plenty of smart people watch that shit. plenty of stupid people do too. some watch for the drama (‘omg, mitt romney kissed a baby today, while obama was playing golf!'). some watch for the shit disguised as real news (‘obama has been fighting a bipartisan congress for the entirety of his presidency, and has still made astounding progress; whereas, romney is a male chauvinist pig'). they don't care what you think, if you like them, or what the truth is. they are television companies. the only fucking thing they care about is THAT YOU ARE WATCHING. that's it. no more, no less. companies selling products and services buy air time, to sell those products and services. the larger a number of people that see those advertisements, the more money the company is willing to pay for that air time. that's it.
it makes sense, from a business standpoint. the studio. the cameras. the lights. the crew. the host. the sound booth (with microphones, cables, compressors, mixing boards, headphones, sound dampening, amplifiers, PRE-amplifiers, sound processors, computer hardware, software, analog to digital converters, the list goes on. i'm a sound guy, but no audio-visual equipment worth its salt is cheap. we're talking quality, largely based on hollywood paychecks. there's plenty more pricey stuff that i lumped into ‘cameras'. bonus points if you know what the hell grip and electric means). naturally, none of this equipment or talent is going to come free, and you have to pay for that shit somehow. that involves management. and i imply in that upper management. maybe that's why i don't like the news. it has been left in the hands of businessmen and salesmen, who frankly don't give a fuck, so long as they have a healthy bottom line. any, and i mean ANY salesman would gladly sell you his firstborn, if that's what seals the deal. there's a worse part. he will say that his first attempt at offspring has all of these awesome selling points. he will never unhand the child he sold. no, hell no. he will give you the the down syndrome infant that the nurses accidentally dropped a few times. it's all about the money he wants you to give him.
firstborns aside, it is that willingness that is telling; unsettling. they are willing to do whatever it takes, for the money. it is all about money. and i resent that immensely. i is sooper bad at business. i could never be a salesman. why should that mean that i don't deserve to be able to survive comfortably?
it is unimaginably bad to be living in a country that is being run by businessmen. i mean, if the ‘news' show advocating them costs such astronomical amounts of money, how much must a campaign that pays for that advocacy cost? any politician in this nation is far better off than i am. because they are much better at doing business. now, for the most part, i can see how business sense could be an admirable quality in a political entity, but is a country nothing but a business? no. it is a culture. the american culture is admittedly young and unfortunately simple. buuuut the pharaohs are gone. the caesars are gone. and they were even shittier people than what our country allows (apparently slavery is GOOD for business....). maybe it's the human condition that we are inescapably impelled toward our own self destruction. still, i have to hope that we can escape. i mean, i won't be able to escape this cultural conditioning, but destruction is bad. i am sorry for my ignorance, i resent that as well, but it's hard to find black friends in a backcountry area (read: not detroit) of michigan. i have put forth a valiant effort, while trying not to seem too interested.
seriously, though. i hate that. most white people have the default reaction of being apologetic. fuck you. slavery is not my fault. your ethnicity is not my fault. nor is mine. if you're upset about ANY skin color, whether it be yours or others', then you should take it up with whatever imperceptible being you believe is in charge of that sort of thing. genetic features of any kind, physiological, psychological, or otherwise, are derivatives of the chromosomes that created that individual. you may have symptomatic propensities that neither you, nor anybody else, can do anything about. why should that be a basis of judgement? as much as people shit on being judgemental, we all are. we can't help it. everyone has their own line in the sand. but seriously, that line came from somewhere. the only thing i am hoping for, is that the line isn't exclusively biological. people can learn from one another, regardless of genetic makeup, and that affects how THEIR BRAINS WORK. i would much rather be judged by how my brain works than how my face looks. so should everyone else. unless they don't want to. y'all's entitled to be idiots. i just won't tolerate you as friends. sorry. honestly, by now, you are probably well on your way to thinking i'm an idiot. i am glad. that means you're ready to grow as a person in a global society. the germans sometimes call this kulturelle unterschiede. embrace cultural differences. try learning what people are before you try to tell them what they should be, for a change. Schadenfreude macht viel spass, aber kulturelle unterschiede sind am besserung.
so, i took three semesters of german. i guess that's out there now. my first car was a 1978/9 volkswagen rabbit. that eventually led to me entering the michigan volkswagen enthusiasts. they're good people, it's cool. for the record, i'm awful at german, although i enjoy it immensely. that should be really, the fundamental point of my argument. i have german heritage. i have spent a small portion of my life studying the culture. yet, i am not a german. i cannot, nor will ever be a german. i don't want to be a german. it just wouldn't feel right. that would be like cheating, or something.
i'm a lot of other things aside from german. so are many other americans with german heritage. but does that heritage also give to them certain tendencies, quirks? how can i be a german descendant exclusively when i also have native blood. far as i know, it's chippewa. and i have this inexplicably weird attraction to women with long, straight, dark, shiny hair. in your face, freud (yet another german. maybe that's why they have weird porn? or should we just blame hitler?) my mom had curly hair, of a shade that i am fairly certain she wasn't even sure of anymore by the time i was born. oedipal complex, my ass.
not that he was entirely wrong. viewing my past relationships objectively, i can see far too many similarities to the behavioral patterns of my mother. if you aren't able to put yourself in my shoes, you might not be able to understand how truly creepifying it is to realize you like chicks that are similar to your mom. i can give you a minute to try and acclimate yourself. seriously, take your time. i don't mind. it's worth a minute to fully comprehend the next step of this developmental process.
so, you've dated some. got laid a couple times. whatever. you can bury that shit as long as you want, but as soon as you've progressed to the long-term type of romantic relationship, you can either realize that she's more like mama than you care to admit, or you can refuse to admit it. delude yourself all you want to, the rest of us are unconvinced. you're doing yourself a favor in acknowledging this.
once this realization is made, everything is still totally cool, until the next time you go home and your mom touches you. then it all turns to fuck.
"aww, i missed mom's backrubs. man i really forgot the way she.... uh oh. um, knows how to rub me the right way. that feels wrong now. mom, don't stop. but seriously, stop. it feels TOO good."
and then you go back to the girlfriend, and mom takes a hiatus. AND IT'S EVEN WEIRDER. for months, there's nothing you can do except guiltily indulge yourself in the new physical contact you have acquisitioned. there's always that lingering guilt borne of the constant effort it takes to dispel tu madre from the old chrome dome. but you do it anyway, because you're a dog. whatever it takes. time to shop around for one that's a little less matronly.
she walked into the room. despite her lack of desire to be there, there she was. yet again another example of how she was unable to say no to basically anyone.
i could be anywhere right now, she thought. i could be at home, relaxing in front of the televison. playing cards with other friends. wasting time on the internet. and yet, here i am, taking a seat at the bar waiting for ella to show up. ella was always late.
it had gotten to the point that she would tell ella to meet her at a place thirty minutes before she actually intended to show up.
i knew ella's syndrome, and planned accordingly. that much, at least, i could accept and happily accommodate. i figure that way i can earn myself some karma. she can't justifiably bitch the one time i hit a bunch of traffic or whatever. so i tolerate her perpetual tardiness.
i might as well order a drink and wait for her eventual arrival, i suppose. can't get too drunk, though. i am sick and tired of those douchebags looking for an easy lay. i often wonder why so many women go to bars looking for men. i mean, i can understand why men go to bars looking for women. there isn't much thought involved on that end of the transaction. but a woman willing to walk into a den of sausages that enjoy booze and pussy, with a subconscious desire for a partner suitable for producing offspring with? i fail to see the potential in that endeavour. if i walk into a bar, i'm not looking for a husband, i'm looking for a drink. thankfully, the guys in the bar are cromagnons just looking to get laid, and are more than happy to shell out drinks accordingly. given the nature of this transaction, however, i intended to pick up my own tab this particular evening.
2012 1 December :: 12.20pm
:: Music: queen - love of my life
hello, and happy tomorrow, which is actually today now! i'm chris. and basically, i'm going to write whatever i feel like writing. i'm going to try and keep it organized by topic as best i can, but it's probably going to wind up being quite the clusterfuck anyway.
some topics i plan on covering are:
i work at a hotel, so that might come up as well.
i suppose i should introduce a little bit about myself. you know, all those questions that new people ask you, or old people at family reunions ask you, as the case may be. i went to cedar springs high school, and graduated in 2005. cedar springs is a small town about 17 miles north of grand rapids, michigan. lots of farms. you know, horses and cornfields and shit. sometimes literal, actual shit. it's an art form, being able to tell what types of animal manure they're using to fertilize the fields, which happens in the spring and fall. horse is by far the most pleasant smelling, if poop can smell pleasant. cows are worse than horses, but still not too bad. pigs are pretty rank (they're actually surprisingly cleanly and intelligent animals, but your poop is only going to smell as good as your diet allows, so pig slop is not going to do you any favors). and chickens are downright foul (fowl? see what i did there?). seriously, though, it's bad. chickens suck, even if they and their unborn offspring are delicious. chickens are mean, smelly, loud, disgusting animals. and sometimes, when they get old, they get cankles and start eating their eggs. senile cannibals with smelly poop and unattractive legs = bad. man, fuck chickens.
for advanced techniques, you can start trying to determine the derivation of blended manure. picking out the complex bouquet of horse and cow with a subtle hint of pig on the tail end is a feat nigh on impossible. my uncle is really good at it. then again, he grew up in an even smaller town. hell, they used to raise chickens at home. so i guess over time you could really hone your skills. especially when there's nothing better to do. which is like, all the time.
i haven't been back to cedar much since high school. there really isn't anything there to go back for. i mean, i liked it while i was there. i knew i would never be starting a home there. i knew i would be leaving and going to college. it was not a question. as the eldest grandchild on my fathers side, and being a rather dutiful student, it was an expectation. so i wound up going to GVSU, which is about 17 miles west of grand rapids, michigan (okay, so i just looked it up, and it's only like 12 miles, but humor me, alright?). I had a good time there. met some really cool people. even participated in some really cool projects. and then, in 2009, graduation time came. so i graduated, with my useless B.A. in sound design for film and video. spent a week in europe with a friend. dicked around all summer. you know, things a college graduate would want to do.
there were two primary ways in which i was fucked at this point. first was, i didn't know how to be a big person, work nine to five, all that jazz. the only thing i knew how to do, because i'd spent the last 16 years of my life doing it, was go to school. so i was already at a bit of a loss for what the next inevitable phase was supposed to be in my life. i mean, yeah, get a job, but what job? how? which brings in the other half of me being fucked. in 2009 the world economy saw its biggest recession since the crash of ‘29. and, perfectly, michigan was leading the way with one of the highest unemployment rates in the country. fan-fucking-tastic. i'm still struggling with it today, but at least i have a full-time job for now, that doesn't pay what it should, but it's something. and after three years of having nothing but odd side jobs under the table here and there, along with nothing but unemployedness besides, hell - i'll take it.
which brings me to here. i had heard about NaNoWriMo while i was at grand valley, but never participated. i had a friend remind me about it, saying she was going to do it this year, and i should too. so, i am!
scooter is a friend of mine. we are approaching our one year friendshiversary. he is ... interesting, and even though it has only been a year, he hangs out with me like it's his job, so we've been making up for lost time at an alarming rate. which is why he's a perfect topic for this, because not only do we have a lot of fodder for discussion, it's all pretty crazy stuff. like i said, interesting.
i guess you could say we are drug buddies, if you want to be a dick about it.
scooter is what i would call an idiot savant. he can do pretty much anything if you just take a minute and show him how. he plays guitar and can learn a new song in a couple of hours. he'd never played hockey before, but it took me all of 15 minutes to teach him a proper wrist shot. his mind and body are very in tune with one another. he can make a limb go numb with nothing but his brain and a little concentration. he will cry out in pain popping a zit so small that, if i had one of similar caliber, i wouldn't even know it was there. hand-eye coordination and muscle memory are second nature to him. he can focus his eyes to better than perfect vision, and sees things to which i am typically oblivious.
he is extremely affected with attention deficit disorder. yet his brain is so mystical that he can keep up with it and still focus on all of those things at the same time, and retain them indefinitely. i often have trouble keeping up with him, even touched by ADD as i am (with an unsuspectingly marvelous brain, such as it is), and am continually frustrated when he and i both hold me to his standard. the outcome is invariably disappointing. but occasionally i can keep up, which is always refreshing.
i like it, though. i like the challenge. it's fascinating to me just to watch his mind in action. i see glimmers of my own in there at times, and am even more interested to find the unique perspectives and ways of thinking that i had never even considered. but there are plenty of differences as well. i'm blind as a fucking bat. even with my glasses, which i have had since second grade, i can't see shit half the time. i am much better at keeping my trap shut and just listening to the conversation ebb and flow, while he will prattle on incessantly. it's convenient for me for the most part, since we can spend time together, and i don't have to provide much stimulus to the conversation. he pretty much carries it on his own. it's frustrating at times when i'm trying to focus on something, because it takes a lot of concentration on my part, and i can only focus on one thing at a time. as a young child, i would get so thoroughly ensconced in the task at hand, that i would get extremely angry when i was interrupted. i don't get pissed about it as much anymore, and have learned to cope as best i can. sometimes you have to drop what you're doing and come back to it later, because something much more pressing demands your attention. but that doesn't make it any less fucking annoying to me. and he does it constantly, because his brain can keep up with everything, and what the hell is wrong with you, you fucking troglodyte. this is the 21st century. learn to fucking multitask, you piece of shit. at least that's what the voices tell me. but i've tried. i just can't seem to get the hang of it. i'm not optimistic for future success. the trick is going to be finding out how to tell the world to go suck a bag of dicks for a minute while i finish what i'm working on. then i can give them my undivided attention at a future point, yet to be determined. but the world isn't cooperating with me on that front, for the most part. oh well. if one of us is inevitably going to be disappointed, i'll voluntarily take on that mantle. malcontent people pleaser.
2012 1 December :: 12.57am
:: Mood: chill
:: Music: javon jackson - compared to what
national novel writing month is over!
i did not make much of a showing, myself. less than 10,000 words. but thank you for the support that i'm sure would have availed itself given a more vociferous crowd.
it's okay, though. i accomplished a few other necessary things in the month of november, and this is 7k+ more words than i had in october. so, that's something. i plan to continue working on the project, and expanding what's there so far. hell, by next november i might be ready to actually write a novel. in the meantime, i'm glad to work with what i have. and keep learning how to write. if nothing else, i have learned that i'm not a writer yet. and fiction is really going to be the best way to garner some heavy duty chunks of words.
sorry to phil - and the rest of the world - that dr. sex and the sexy mayor of muscleville do not make any appearances in this material. but i appreciate the fodder they will provide me later. then it will actually be a novel. with like, characters and shit.
in the meantime, let me take you back to where i was 30 days ago:
*WARNING!!! CONTAINS AN OVERABUNDANT PROLIFERATION OF SWEARS!*
of a supposed book that i'm writing. a chronic novel. of unknown proportions. i'm at the International House Of Pancakes, and i'm really fucking tired. so, i'm gonna go to bed, and write this shit tomorrow.
2 days until nano! at which point, i will probably not know what to do with myself. be super busy? write a lot? guess we'll find out.
wrote another thing for work. they seriously keep asking me to write them. i guess it's a good thing. i mean, i enjoy writing, and i'm getting paid to do it. regardless, i had a lot of fun with this one.
i shall end with some lyrics (because i so rarely post them):
here's the truest thing i've ever known
the heart is just a muscle with a rhythm all its own
it doesn't stop when you decide not to move on
the heart knows nothing of your love or of your loss
so life just keeps on ticking by
compelled by instinct to survive
and love's the only thing worth being alive for
- how to rest, the crern werves
well, at least it explains my lack of will to live. i mean, i don't want to die. but i don't have much love to live for.