Skipping past Writober and Nanoblomo . . ? Shit, I dunno. I'm as bored as you are.
Thursday, June 07, 2007
Our Road is a Deathtrap. I’m Guessing He Couldn’t Have Come from Far Away.
Just as with those letters I used to read in my dad’s Penthouse Forum, I’ve heard of this happening to other people and I never thought it would happen to me.
I found a cat in the engine of my car.
Yesterday morning, as I sauntered out of bed and into the living room, I heard a panicked meowing from outside. Sounded like a kitten. I fingered the blinds open and looked around the “patio” at the end of our house. No cats. Eh, whatever. I flipped on the Weather Channel and started reading a report for work. Every few minutes, I’d hear the cat again, so I got up and went outside. I walked around our carport, the end of the house, and into the neighbor’s yard. I even looked under my car. No cats. (Did find the neighbor’s fucking YIP-dog, though. Man, I hate that dog.)
I drove to work. And worked. Wednesday is “Mom” day, so I left work at lunch and got on the interstate to drive to the Subway near my mom’s place to get our lunch. As soon as I got out of the car, I heard the screaming meow. Of a kitten who had climbed up into my engine compartment. After opening the hood of the car, I couldn’t even SEE the kitten. Nor could I see it from under the car. It was only after knocking on the side panels and calling for him to come out (in my sweetest, playful, kitten-beckoning voice) that he finally dropped down and started winding around my feet.
After a stop at my mom’s (where the kitten even warmed the heart of my pet-intolerant mother), I took the kitten back to the house. I cleaned out our cat carrier, made a litterbox out of a shoebox, and prepped the kitten to go with Michelle to work. Where he was “adopted.”
We’re still not sure where the kitten lived before we “rescued” him. He had a flea collar, and I’m guessing he climbed into my car overnight (in our carport). So . . . neighbors? We checked with the friendly black couple next door, who have no cats. On the other side is a couple with a new-ish baby. Would they have a kitten, too? Michelle went over at lunch yesterday, but no-one answered the door. After work, the husband was outside and I was feeling particularly blah about meeting my neighbors so, fuck it. I’m rolling the dice that, if you lose a kitten you really care about, you’ll be going door to door and/or putting up flyers. We would. Rationalizing, I know.
I blame the Republicans.
Tuesday, June 05, 2007
I’m on a Mission. And I Can’t Tell You About it.
I’m a firm believer in eating a good breakfast. Or just a breakfast. Whatever. Apparently, this doesn’t include the SlimFast “shakes” I’ve been chilling in my fridge because, invariably, the morning I tell myself, Y’know, self, you’ve been eating like shit the past couple days and probably will again today, and take plan to have a “shake” for breakfast instead (to replace the already-modest breakfast I usually have, taking it to work with me to more adequately bridge the gap between waking up and inhaling whatever prepackaged, frozen dinner I happened to bring to work with me) . . . that’s the morning I leave the “shake” in the fridge. At home.* And have no backup breakfast. So I can either starve myself until lunch (not usually an option), swing by Starbucks and pick up my customary 10,000-calorie venti mocha, or make arrangements to stockpile backup breakfasts at work (instead of eating a packet of oatmeal scavenged from the office kitchenette, which was best-by dated sometime in 2004). So, worry not, The Internet. Because, now, to go along with the 17 packets of Taco Bell mild sauce, bag of spearmint Starlight mints, and wintergreen Altoids in my desk drawer, I have a couple packets of oatmeal manufactured after we made Mia, an “oatmeal-to-go” bar, and a SlimFast breakfast bar.
I’m ready to go, World. Er, The Internet.
* Don’t say it. Or type it. You can’t stockpile JACK in the office fridge. We’re not a sharing bunch. That, and/or the fact that when I finally remembered that they were there, I’d be a fucking LIFER drinking Optima-infused low-fat milk from 14 years earlier.
Tuesday, May 22, 2007
Snapshot, with Very Little Context
Last Thursday evening, I was finishing up on the recumbent exercise bike (timer hitting 25:05), listening to Sonic Youth’s “I Love You Golden Blue” on my iPod Shuffle, and I used a collection of poems (Jen Benka’s a box of longing with fifty drawers*) to mark my place in the March 2007 Vanity Fair (the Michael Wolff article on Judith Regan). (Marking my place in the Benka collection was bookmark promoting abebooks.com.)
This is what my blogging life has been reduced to: a fucking Twitter post. And I HAVE a Twitter page . . . in addition to this blog (plus one or two others), a MySpace page, and a Vox site. I’m really not holding up my end of the whole navel-gazing bargain, am I?
* A little critique (this would be the context). I don’t know where I saw a link to this collection, but I think it was on a blog I’d read. Reviews seemed promising. Well . . . I deal with words and language and linguistics for a living, but I don’t usually enjoy exercises in wordplay as poetry. I don’t want to have to read this whole collection in one 20-minute sitting to GET it. I want a collection of poems that, taken individually, MEAN something. And taken TOGETHER, might mean something ELSE. Or something more significant. I dunno . . . this just seems like a cute (but SERIOUS) gimmick-as-political-statement. All around, very light. THIS is the kind of writing that inspires ME to write more. And I am. Just not HERE, apparently. (As an aside, I like how more thought went into this footnote than the actual POST. ROCK ON, context!)
Poetry • The Media • (7) Comments closed • Permalink
Wednesday, May 09, 2007
Testing the Limits of SPF Technology
We’re back from our beach trip. If you know me at all, either in real life or this virtual one, you know I hate being at the beach. Well, we were at the beach for something like four days and four nights. And, lemme tell you, I never want to go to the beach again . . . unless it’s exactly like that. We stayed in an amazing house with a passel of blogger-ly types, ate great food, drank the perfect amounts of alcohol (except for that one night with the grape vodka and ziti), and kept my beach exposure to a minimum. I’m not joking; the house was right ON the beach (separated by a POOL, motherfuckers), so out of the 40-some-odd hours we were there, I touched sand for about one of them. One hour.
There was lots of SUN exposure though. Between the constant pool time Mia was demanding and the fact that the sun was full-ON every day, I was really pushing that SPF 50 Coppertone Baby stuff as far as I could. And I’m happy to report, that I didn’t burn anywhere.
The flipside to all of this is that, due to the omnipresent Guitar Hero playing, I never want to hear “Sweet Child o’ Mine” or “Girlfriend” or even “Message in a Bottle” ever again.
In a related note, my wife is, as I type this, pricing PS2/Guitar Hero combos on Ebay.
Also, in true Lunchbreak fashion, we didn’t take any pictures. At all. Didn’t even bring our camera. But other people did. Well, not OUR camera . . . you get the picture.
Roadtripping • Weekends • (6) Comments closed • Permalink
Wednesday, April 25, 2007
Because I’m Not Successfully Copycatting Unless I Post a Picture
I remember way-back-when and I used to write posts in the style of some other blogger (but, honestly, it was mostly just Estella-turned-Erin). Like I only had one thing that seemed like “mine,” and even THAT was ripped off. The last time I did the imitation/flattery thing, Styro commented that my Dooce-aping wasn’t funny. So, I guess we’ll go with the anti-Dooce . . . SJ at I, Asshole. (I’m like a dog with a bone on the fucking blog-whoring, right?)
Scene One: Guess Who You WON’T be Seeing at the Women’s World Cup in 2023
Despite my enthusiasm about soccer, our daughter was not named after Mia Hamm. Michelle was genuinely trying to pick a name that had no connection to anyone in either of our families. Which I think was an all-round great idea. Still, I’d like to see Mia grow up to be a soccer player.
But that will never happen.
She’s been on the princess/ballerina kick for a while and, after watching some soccer with me on T.V., said that she didn’t want to play soccer because she didn’t like getting knocked down. Which is understandable. But her preschool has started doing some semi-organized soccer training in the afternoons, and they had a “game” last Friday.
The “field” was set up on a hill. There were supposed to be two teams of seven, but it turned out to be four on four. Mia was great with the running around after the ball, but I think she only TOUCHED the ball one time . . . and that was because someone kicked the ball at her.
Time to start researching those ballet lessons.
Part Two: Gwen Step-on-Me, Indeed (Alternately, Summer Turds in the Cell-Whore, and How Not to be a Total Motherfucking Douchebag Asshole)
Out in the fringes of the Indie-Rock Galaxy, our band exists as a very small planet orbiting an unimpressive, dim sun. This is the Tallahassee music scene. When you play a “locals only” show with other bands with no “following,” it can be a soul-crushing experience. But when out-of-town / touring bands come through, and you get put on the bill, it can be somewhat more exciting.
A week ago, we were lucky enough to land on a bill with three out-of-town bands and another local. Not huge names, but interesting and compatible. The headliners were from Athens, Georgia. Our band was slotted to play second to last. Cool, right? Fourth of five bands (the fifth band was another local).
The first band (The Winter Sounds . . . also from Athens) were fuckin’ great (and very nice). I bought their CD and chatted them up a little. The other local band was next, and here’s where the problem starts: Two guys plus shitpiles of equipment. It took them quite a while to set up and break down. I didn’t give it a lot of thought until much later. During Dear and Glorious Physician, I was beckoned outside for an impromptu band meeting. It seems that the headliners wanted to switch slots with us. Not an unusual request at a “locals only” show, but kind-of weird for a touring band. We cave a lot in these situations, but I knew our drummer (Mr. ADD) wasn’t gonna go for it, anyway; plus, there seemed to be a strong “no” consensus. So, that’s that, right?
Wrong. Our band diplomat passed along the news. The negotiator for the headlining band says something along the lines of, “Well, we’re the headliners, so we’ll talk to the manager and have you guys thrown off the bill.” LUCKILY, this detail wasn’t reported to the rest of us until days later. As it was, Mr. ADD called them cocks under his breath as he stormed out of the club with his drums and we were talking to the club manager. I guess our Power Play trumped theirs, because we ended up playing next anyway.
Look, don’t be that band. If you’re (still) a relatively unknown touring band and you’re billed as the headliner, don’t cause a scene when you have to play after 11 . . . even if you want to go to an after-party with the other touring bands. Because, even though you were a tool, the band you attempted to dick over stayed to see your set and liked you enough to buy your CD (anyway).
Part the Third: Distraction Over
Every time we sit down to watch an episode or four of “24” in one sitting, I comment how happy this must make our cats. Well, sorry, kitties. Because even though we’ve started watching the recently purchased Season 3 (and didn’t even wait until it arrived; we rented the first two discs because “24” is to us as heroin was to Jack Bauer back in Season 3), it’s time for “Heroes,” again. After several weeks of being without it, I can finally live again. Unlike Isaac, apparently.
(p.s. – Does anyone watch “Drive?” Doesn’t the setup of the show, the FEEL of the show, seem to be very “Heroes”-esque? I’m betting that’s why the show is scheduled [on another Network, mind you] to run before “Heroes.” It’s cooperative programming. Smooth one, Mr. Murdoch.)
"Rock Star" • Imitation/Flattery • (6) Comments closed • Permalink
Friday, April 20, 2007
When the Best (or at Least Semi-Good) Intentions Run Headlong into Conjunctivitis
I’d really been planning on getting back to this sooner . . . perhaps having “lunch in” yesterday. And then, just before lunch, Mia’s school called with the news of suspected pinkeye. So, I did what any good parent would do: I picked her and her lunch up, ran by the house to get some juice and bits of distraction (for her), and came back to work. Because, no matter what they say, your coworkers love nothing more than a four-year-old with the Eye Funk.
Hey! First and foremost, you should swing by SJ’s (at I, Asshole) for some PNW’d action. When she was making her contest-related pitch to win a trip to this summer’s BlogHer, I posted about her efforts here and half-jokingly suggested that (in return) she feature me in an installment of “PNW’d” . . . as a “well-hung ocelot.” Which she did. It’s here . . . and awesome.
In other news, I love how so much of America is editorializing about the Virginia Tech shootings and how the death toll would have been much less had the teachers and/or some students been armed. With guns. On campus. Yeah, let’s create a nation-sized OK Corral. Or several college-sized ones. Sounds like a grand idea. (On an aside, during the run-up to the 2000 election, my dad and I were arguing about Bush and Gore. I thought that while Gore wasn’t as proven a leader as Clinton, Bush wasn’t fit to lead a Boy Scout troop. And my dad thought that, if Gore was elected president, the Government would come take all his guns away. I just shook my head and laughed. “Yeah, they’ll never do that.”)
Now I’m thinking they should. I think the Government should take all of our guns away.
Wednesday, April 11, 2007
And You Are . . ?
I’m annoyed. And, really, too busy to contemplate writing some involved thing about my goings on. Which are too boring to report, if I’m being completely honest. And I am. To wit(t):
- This threat won’t carry a lot of weight, considering my total commercial-radio listening time amounts to about two hours a week, but I’m ready to remove our local adult-contemporary station from my presets. While they’re all cool with the retro/80s stuff every now and then, the increasingly omnipresent crossover-country shit is getting to be too much. Is this happening to you? I hear the opening slide-guitar notes and immediately hit the button to transport Mia and I to the local bootie station. Or whatever Casiotone, experimental tripe our local college station is pumping out. (Sorry, V-89. I’m just annoyed right now. It’s me, not you.) Anyway, it was bad enough when I had to dodge the harmonica intros from Blues Traveler. Can it get much worse?
- When I wrote the ad for a technical editor to replace MYSELF, basically (I was promoted), I’d really hoped that the position would be filled inside of two weeks.
And it hasn’t been. Not by a long shot. Dammit-it-all.It’s finally been filled . . . incidentally, with a friend of mine. (Cue Danger Music.) But she’s not starting for more than three weeks, so I’m stocking up on the knee pads and petro-jelly.
- It’s hard out there for an espresso addict . . . on Easter. Leave it to Starbucks and their Corporate Coffee Compatriots to feed the needs of caffeine-dependent pagans everywhere. Seriously, after some Easter-morning disc-golfing, I swung by the nearest indie coffee shop for my great-big mocha . . . and, ooops, they were observing the “anniversary” of Christ rising from the dead. Target (with an in-store Starbucks) was closed, and Border’s (featuring Seattle’s Best or Finest or Something-or-Other) was opening two hours late. I was literally zig-zagging around Tallahassee for 30 minutes before finding an open place. I’m not exactly sure how many coffee shops are closer to our house than that particular Starbucks, but FUCK THEM ALL. Jesus and the Easter Bunny would never want to see Their flock put through that kind of caffeine withdrawal.
- The opposite of annoying: For you creative-writing (and publishing hopeful) types . . . a friend pointed me to Duotrope, which is like the Poet’s / Writer’s Markets, but online and searchable. It’s really badass . . . user-friendly and user-updated. Seriously, this is making it that much MORE likely that I’ll send out poems for
Thursday, March 29, 2007
The last time I did a job interview, I was the interviewee, and it was over seven years ago. The last time I CONDUCTED a job interview, I was in my early 20s and I was managing a video store. (And probably drunk.) Anyway, this all adds up to me probably not being the most qualified person to conduct a job interview. Luckily, it’s for someone who’s going to be reporting to, and working with, me . . . so I’m motivated to, y’know, actually hire someone GOOD. (Pity everyone otherwise.)
I’ve ventured into the danger zone, though, because I totally avoided all the “if you were a tree, what kind of tree would you be?” type questions. It probably would’ve been more useful/applicable if I had them put their iPods on shuffle and see what 10 songs would come up first. Well, more bloggerly, anyway.
Tuesday, March 20, 2007
“. . . And 24 is Breathing in My Face . . . Like a Mad Whore.”
So, lately, I’ve been, all, “Fuck this blogging thing. I’m gonna be creative. And productive. Creatively productive!” In case you didn’t know. I wasn’t starting a story or anything. FYI.
Whenever I get back on the poetry “wagon,” I’ll work on a few poems and maybe even bring one or two of them to some form of completion. And then it’s all about publishing . . . getting my name out there. Fame, right? Shyeah . . . I’m sending out poems I wrote 10 years ago coupled with poems I wrote in 5 minutes back in October. (Writober!) After getting rejected by some small-press journals over the past couple years, I decided it was high time (y’know, in the face of all that rejection) to up the ante and submit to more prestigious journals. Which is what I’m up to now. In the realm of “creativity.”
The band that I’m playing with now has a show tonight. Hopefully. Our drummer (Mr. ADD) was afflicted with some stomach bug thing yesterday and was all shades of vomit-y, missing our last pre-show practice. Beer will not save us from what is to come.
Michelle and I had never, ever, watched an episode of “24.” And then her mom got addicted to it and has gone back to the first season. So, we’ve dutifully followed. I’m really amazed by how GOOD that show is.* And how NORMAL Keifer can make himself. Right now, we’re working to keep ourselves from living out Jack Bauer’s life in real time.
Goddamn promotion. (Hey, let’s put quotes around that. “Promotion.”)
* “Rome” . . . don’t worry, tender flower. I will never abandon you. Even when you’re dead and gone. I’ll never forget all the stabbing and drug abuse and rampant varieties of S&M (apparently practiced on BOTH sides of the Mediterranean. All in ONE episode. I love you, baby.
"Rock Star" • Boob Tube • (2) Comments closed • Permalink
Sunday, March 11, 2007
Long time, no boring the motherfucking shit out of you, The Internets. While I’m not officially “on a break,” I feel like I should be. There are so many goddamn distractions, and so many MORE things that I should be doing. For instance, while not performing like a half-talented proverbial infinity-eth-monkey-with-a-typewriter here, I’ve been posting reviews on BeerAdvocate, creating a fantasy team for Major League Soccer (that might not even be taking place in 2007), and following my alma mater’s attempt to play their way into the NCAA tournament.* What I should be doing is working on my poetry, literary journal, “novel,” and NCAA bracket. Oh, and my new job. Which is just like my old job, at the same place, but without my boss. In fact, it looks like, suddenly, I might BE the boss . . . of no-one at the moment. It’s been a very frantic, anxious past seven days. And staying away has been easier than being here. Just so you know. I wouldn’t expect much here in the short term. Not that you have or would, anyway.
* Watch the NCAA Selection Show on CBS tonight, and see the camera reveal huge disappointment in Tallahassee when they realize they’re gonna be playing in the NIT for the 14,000-th year in a row.
Wednesday, February 28, 2007
Let’s NOT Dwell on the “Stale Bread” Symbolism
Continuing this blog’s momentum-less track record, I spent the weekend mostly away from the Internets. Which was partially due to our connection at home being intermittent, and Patricia’s warning that her host’s server was going to be down.
Mia had another one of those pesky “fever viruses” starting Saturday afternoon and lasting through Sunday, so she had to stay “home” from school yesterday. Meaning, she was at work with one of us for most of the day. Blah, blah, blah. Man, I’m so bored writing about my life. Or what I THINK, for that matter, but that won’t stop me from typing it out . . . with HTML code to make it into a bulleted list:
- We’d promised to take Mia to the lake to feed the ducks Sunday morning, in spite of the approaching rain and her fever. So, after watching the Weather Channel to help estimate the approximate arrival of the rain and giving Mia some Children’s Motrin to transform her back to her hyperactive self, we went to the lake. To feed the ducks. Or the aggressive terns that flock there, as it turned out. The threat of rain kept away about 90% of the usual early-spring lake-walking crowd, so we were really the only bread-hurling game in town. The terns were pretty insistent, so we were trying to distract them away from the nice, patient ducks by throwing ENTIRE SLICES of half-stale bread like Frisbees. I was watching a cluster of terns having a midair fight over a slice of bread when I walked into a park bench and full-on banged my shin. Hard.
- There was a replay of the latest “Grey’s Anatomy” on Saturday evening (I think). I told Michelle that they were gonna blow a chance of having me start watching their show again by NOT killing off Meredith. Which you KNEW they weren’t gonna do. Because if she AND her mom died in the same episode, they’d have to call the show “Anatomy.” And would probably be more accurate.
- After “Heroes” last night was the premier of “The Black Donnellys.” Y’know, considering it was hatched by the creative teams behind Crash and Million Dollar Baby, you couldn’t get me LESS interested in watching it. Unless the troubled Irish kids somehow formed a NASCAR team in their quest for glory.
- I’ve been so put-off about recent Oscar presentations, with all the “who’s wearing what?” bullshit. And it’s not like I’ve seen any of the movies. So I pretty much tuned out this year, although I did see Jennifer Hudson win her award. And President-Elect (2000) Al Gore presenting with Leo. From what I gather, though, the show went until some godless hour (when I would’ve been awake anyway), so I’m glad I didn’t sit through it. I guess.
- How interesting does cabaret-punk sound to you? How about sleazy cabaret-punk? I’d been skeptical that the Dresden Dolls would work out, but they’ve really won me over in the same way the Arcade Fire did. And not just because Amanda Palmer recreated this Bauhaus album cover for a magazine article. Or because the last line of their album is, “You motherfuckers you’ll sing someday.”
Boob Tube • Music • Weekends • (1) Comments closed • Permalink
Friday, February 23, 2007
Michelle’s bandmate and friend (Rio) went to India recently with her fiancé (the ‘Ju) to get married in the midst of his family. And motherland. While there, they picked up gifts for many of their friends back home. I received this:
It’s a fertility symbol. A phallic one*. One that’s revered and worshipped in temples all over India.
While many people might not appreciate getting a miniature penis penetrating a vagina, I do. My friends and I often give each other gifts of questionable inappropriateness. And I think an Indian religious symbol trumps gay porn anytime.
* The Wikipedia reference for “lingam” skirts the phallic nature of the icon. And is generally less fun.
Tuesday, February 20, 2007
I guess I keep forgetting every year about how my company doesn’t observe MLK Day or President’s Day. And how Mia’s out of school while both Michelle and I have to be at work, so there’s all sorts of kid-juggling. It’s all good, though, because Mia has quite the playful relationship with our receptionist, and I’m able to get some work done with her here. (Can’t say the same for the receptionist. Or people who want to have a conference call / meeting without a four-year-old plastering her face to the glass door.)
Valentine’s dinner was pretty good (thanks for asking). And Weight Watchers is, eh, going (no, really, thanks).
Wednesday, February 14, 2007
Something New. And Old. And Pimp-y.
When my band broke up a few months back, I was pretty pissed . . . and hurt. Feeling lost and vindictive. Lots of passive-aggressive, behind-the-back name-calling. The works. Anyway, I had a conversation with some friends at a party that I was done with music and was going to focus on writing. Y’know, the “novel” and poetry. Maybe starting another poetry journal. Whatever.
So, of course, I’m in another band now. It’s a lot less stressful than the previous band because there’s no rent, it’s a lot closer to my house, and I’m playing bass (two less strings!). Oh, and the atmosphere is more fun and less . . . tense. I’ll keep you posted on further developments, The Internets.
In other news, SJ over at I, Asshole is trying to get a free ticket to BlogHer (not linking here) through a popularity contest they’re having. Now, I’m no BlogHer (or popularity contest) supporter, but SJ is awesome and she can only lift up the mommy-centric discourse there. Anyway, click on this link and follow the instructions. It’s pretty painless, and it’s for a good cause.
Happy Hallmark-Love Day, everyone! Me and the Missus are going to a fancy restaurant that we’ve never visited. If you know me at all, you have some idea how THAT is gonna go.
Monday, February 12, 2007
Like some great people before me (including myself on at least three separate occasions), I’m going on Weight Watchers. The Holidays were just the start of the latest “problems,” and my 25% increase in weekly workout time coupled with eating and drinking anything within reach that’s not tied down . . . well, it’s not exactly balancing out. I remember back in the old days when I was lamenting that lurch across the 180-pound threshold. I’m now at least 10 pounds beyond that.
Appropriately, I had a shit-ton of pizza (late) last night and chased that with some beer while watching “Rome” (I HAD to text Erin about the “sucking slave cock” line). Anyway, I slept very fitfully with all the reflux and propping my head up and getting up to pee every couple hours and eating lots of Maalox Max. So, right how, I’m negotiating a bowl of Italian wedding soup and surrendering to the spinach (fiber equals negative points!).
I hate spinach.