Friday, July 23, 2004

yesterday was fucking insane

this post was written in Denver on 23 July 04

yesterday was fucking insane.

I got up about 7:15 and threw on a dirty shirt and my skunked out riding shorts/three day underware and mounted El Scorpio. The ride in was thick and 87 degrees with a hazy sun. I killed a $1.30 coffee from the bitter 22 year olds-left wing-lesbian-mohawk-Dead Kennedy's-really trying hard but decidedly not dangerous-coffee shop next the the Brown Line and hit the fucking road.

Arriving at work I'm always soaked with disgusting over sweat. All the white people walking into 515 State look at me like they wonder why a perfectly able bodied white boy is such a slime dripped goat man.

At work I had to edit and heavy re-write 7 biographies of highly successful white men and all of the committies they're in charge of. This takes longer than you think. Inbetween all of this I had to meet with an HR guy on the sly to move forward on a possible job upgrade. I had to write essays explaining my reasoning and attributes. This takes longer than you think. Then I had to wrap up all of my work to cover next week, and get out by 4:30. On my way out the door I ran into the fella in charge of the department I want to work for and he said that he'd heard I'd met with the guy who'd hire me the day before. Was encouraging and then said he'd talk to me when I got back on August 2nd.

I got on my bike and agressively entered pre-rush hour traffic. The pre-rush is worse because with just a few less cars, the drivers in the loop drive faster to fill in the available space. At Ohio/LaSalle I was riding through the crosswalk at about 12 mph with 35 to 50 cars waiting in four one way lanes for the light to change. My front derailer has been fucking with me in shifting faster so it stalls and a strap on my backpack snapped and dropped the 8 or 12 lbs I was carrying, driving me to the pavement. I unclipped my shoes and got out of the street, wheeling El Scorpio to a parking lot, re-adjusting everything, through the one strap around my chest and got back on the street. I was anxious to get home, finish the packing, showering, locking up and getting out the door by 5:45.

In my car at 5:40 I crept through traffic to the blue line at the Kennedy, parked and climbed aboard. At O'Hare, I find my gate, my e-ticket, my bag's checked and x-rayed and I decided to swallow the valium my friend Ellen gave me. It was time to kick back. I wanted the vallium because I wanted to understand the hype. What was it about vallium that helped unemployed middle aged upper middle class women get through their day of leisure without cracking up? I got to my gate and found that my flight was delayed from 8:30pm to 11pm. I calming sedative of vallium lowered my slight frustration to the level of total apathy. Quickly bored with this, I decided to drink a beer to test the effect. It made walking around a very busy O'Hare listening to the Streets on headphones even more surreal.

the day ended by getting picked up by my sister and some kid she knows that has a car. the kid had just moved to denver and was super-freaked that he now lived among mountains. he picked me up because he had nothing better to do. Judging by the way he kept looking at me and smiling while the three of us were at this late night greasy spoon, the kid was gay. That makes me throw up in my mouth.

Tuesday, July 20, 2004

John Frusciante

I've been listening to a lot of the guitarist John Frusciante's work lately.

He spent a better part of the 90's in near-death heroin stupor. He's supposedly lucky to be alive. He emerged from this wasted haze with a burst of creative energy.

I listened to some of his solo music from that period and hated it. It was full on rambling drug wank off on unmastered rough and scratchy 4-track recordings.

His website ( offers a ton of demos available for free download... one is an entire album's worth of music. A lot of it is really interesting. He combines minimalist guitar with shitty mechanical production, and his singing has improved a great deal. He's also included an entire accoustic version of his newer record "Shadows Collide with People".

He's going to be releasing a solo record a month for the next six months... the first one up is a collaboration with Joe Lally of Fugazi and a fella named Josh Klinghoffer of Bicycle Thief.

I was expecting more of a dangerous environment

not good at frequent updates. sorry. have had actual work (what the fuck is that)?

last friday I went to my friend Chris' send off. he's moving to L.A. with his wife at the end of the month. my sister is taking his Lincoln Park apartment when she moves in from D.C. August 1st. Chris is an actor who has gotten bit parts and a handful of commercials. so far he's always been casted as what casting directors have crafted as "Chicago Guy"... think of that fuck on the King of Queens, or George Wendt or John Goodman: tubby, able to break your neck, heart of gold... So, Chris and his wife take the show to L.A. in a couple weeks. They're midwesterners/they're going to hate it.

We had a large laminated card printed with a top ten list of why Chris should move. Carney got it made at Kinko's for only $80 (ass rape). Two of my submissions made the final cut:

"90210 school district superior to 60657 school district"


"chris' agent told him that there was a shortage of unemployed actors in L.A."

Those two were good, I think I had a couple others that were good. Carney played editor. He deserves it, he was ass raped by Kinko's. My inscription inside the card read: "It still freaks me out everytime I see you on TV. Please continue."

Afterwards I rode my bike with a couple of people to the Rainbow Club on Damen and then from there to Marie's Riptide Lounge and then to Exit. I was expecting more of a dangerous environment inside Exit, and it turned out to be a biker theme bar (like fucking Planet Hollywood). Regardless, some snarly punk girls with tattoo sleeves singled me out and bought me shots. I was home by 4 a.m.

Saturday I met Matt at Kelly's Pub for the Sheffield Garden Walk. His sister Mary bartends there and was serving us these potent concoctions of Absolut, raspberry vodka, Bacardi, 7-Up, Red Bull, and a dash of Rum. By estimation I drank 5 over the course of the evening. I don't recall, but they were free. Later in the evening Ellen and her crew showed. It's nice to be her friend, but I think that she still wants to date me. I got really positive vibes and a lot of attention and face time with Melanie the German. Melanie knows that I don't want to be with Ellen, and I think she respects that I'm not a dick about it. We all ended up at Vaughn's around midnight and I started to actually purchase Red Stripes. Ellen tried to tell me that she liked being friends but wanted more (while I kept stealing glances at Melanie/in the peripheral Melanie stealing glances of me), and I told her that we shouldn't be talking about it right then. She even fucking brought up Shannon... again, not the time to talk about it. I bought her a beer and then she went home. The rest of us closed shop, and I rode home.

Cutter was at my place by 9 a.m for our bike ride to the South Side Cultural Center. I felt like a $100 bill. I only made her wait 15 minutes while I pulled my personal shit together and joined her on the bike. A coffee, and I was back. The morning sun on the lake front was fantastic... a glimpse into heaven. We had a very nice ride to the south side, toured the grounds and met with Mysterios about 12:30. He was only an hour late... I'm sure that he was held up getting ready by nothing. That dude is a master killer of time. Anyway, it was good to see him and his newly shaved head... it reminded me of the Space Monkey brigade from "Project Mayhem" in Fight Club.

More riding. More sun. Sunburn. Maximus Sunburn Returns!

Thursday, July 15, 2004

Red Stripes and High Life

fucking shit. a week away.

the template on this has changed. how exciting. how terribly exciting.

so, what's happened?

last friday night I went to see The Anchorman with Ellen and Melanie and their friend Tanner. Melanie is german and so fine. It's a good time to listen to her (not broken), but over-extended explanations in english. she's also got a quick wit and style. anyways, that movie is excellent. no plot, only jokes (as it should be).

afterwards we went the Heuttenbar for a couple of rounds and then back to my place. Melanie spun all british rock. I kicked Tanner's ass at a game of foosball before we played a mix team... me and melanie vs. Tanner and Ellen. Tanner is a 5'5" rugby player. All little dudes have a chip on their shoulder that I wish would disappear... I'm sorry dude, I'm tall. I can't help it, and you suck at foosball. life isn't fair. We drank Red Stripes and High Life until 3 a.m. and they took off.

Saturday I got 3 heaping bags of food at Aldi's for $42. That rocked. I almost couldn't fit it all in my bike trailer.

That evening Rick came over and we had an intense three games of foosball - Rick beating me by a point in the grudge match - over several Red Stripes and Queens of the Stone Age. Fucking miss that guy.

Later, we rode over to Ellen's and grilled out with her and Melanie. Melanie's sister is getting married in the fall and was obligated to buy some wedding shit the next day and had to opt out of riding the 25 mile overnight LATE ride. Sucks, but we had a great time... met up with Matt and Lisa around 1 a.m. and rode the streets,.. cutting through the 3 a.m. Lincoln Park alcholic brigade, and back to the fountain by daybreak. I was wiped. The ride back was torture.

I slept until 5 p.m. and then took a call from Ellen. We got dinner at Penny's and watched The Weather Underground. I was in a half-sleep daze the entire night. I then crashed at home around 11 p.m. and woke up feeling tip-top.

I'm liking being friends with Ellen more than the pressure of trying to let her down easy. I like her friend. I don't know what the german thinks. I think that I amuse her. I couldn't say. Ellen used to offer to set me up, but it always sounded like some kind of a trick. I 'll ride it out and see if there's anything there. No rush/no worries.

I'm fucking tired. I want to ride.

Thursday, July 08, 2004


The English language officially has a new word: Va-va-voom.

"The quality of being exciting, vigorous, or sexually attractive," say the compilers of the 11th edition of the Oxford Concise English Dictionary, which hits bookshops Thursday.

That's fucking stupid.

the old in out in out

ok, what's the latest stupidity that's entered my life...

a couple of nights ago I took a phone call from my friend Matt in Omaha. He recently graduated from medical school in Des Moines, moved back to Cleveland for a bit, now Omaha... shit, that's like living in all three party capitals of the midwest.. how can he stand it? how can he stand? Anyways, his engagement crashed and wrecked on the shore due to conflicting interests (his ex-fiance is a medical student a year behind him with specialty interests not available in Omaha), so Matt's there alone. I feel for him, it's got to be bittersweet: working as long and hard as he had to become a doctor, finally reaching his goal, and having a relationship end and move to a lame city where you don't know anyone. Sucks. He needed someone to chat with for awhile.

My friend Rick called. He's coming in from Michigan to do the late ride on Saturday. Thank goodness Rick lives only 4 hours away, doesn't know anyone in Michigan, has a really hands-off job with the car wash, and has all of his family and friends in Chicago... We'll still get to hang once a month. It'll keep my foosball skills sharp... that's right, bitch.. I'm talking to you.

Even later that night I went to see the 10 p.m. show of Fahrenheit 9/11 at the Davis. Michael Moore is no genius, he just films and edits good filmed editorials (films/filmed/edits/editorials). Basically if you've followed any of the more vocal left wing movements, you've heard everything the movie has to say. The war footage from Iraq is the real reason to see this movie. It's brutal. Everything leading up to the war holds the act of this war in question. The last hour saves it.

Last night I busted a spoke on the commute home. Don't ask how. motherfucker. That bike has cost me a small fortune this past year. I find out that because it's a specialty wheel, the spoke is a "253 double-butted spoke"... one that's nearly impossible to find at any bike store in Chicago. It has to be special ordered. After calling 10 stores, I finally found a 253 spoke at Rapid Transit. So, tonight, I got to retrieve the bike wheel from one store, subway it to the other store, then get home somehows.

Anyways, last night I met up with Matt at Moxie and got to eat for free because a food critic was dining in, and the owner wanted to fill the joint. The chef is excellent. We ate great, and then we drank heavily. I smoked a couple of cigarettes, and am feeling like polluted ass today. Later in the evening, two nice looking blondes came in and apparently knew Matt's girlfriend Lisa (bartender at Moxie), and introduced us. One caught my eye, she had style.

So anyways a middle aged black woman walked in looking haggard. She wanted a Budweiser but only had $2. I gave her the additional $2 she needed, and Lisa smiled at me as if to ask what the fuck are you doing. I got to talking to her. She was fucked up. Her name is Dolores and she's 43 years old. She told me that she had been smoking cocaine earlier in the day and had been drunk all evening. She was run down and needed someone to talk to. We chatted for about 15 minutes and then she asked me if I wanted to have sex with her. I smiled and said no, I just wanted to talk.

Matt walked up and said that we had to get Dolores out of the bar when she finished her bottle. I looked over and saw that the two blondes that had come into the bar had left (snuck out while Dolores was trying to talk me into a bit of the old in out in out, I guess). I asked Dolores what she liked to drink and she said "gin", so we walked to the liquor store next door and I bought her a fifth of some cheap ass gin that she requested, a pack of Newport Light 100's and gave her bus fare. Then Matt handed her the key to the women's shelter she was staying at (she'd left it on the bar), and we parted ways.

Today I'm tired and have a lot to do.

Monday, July 05, 2004

Winona, MN.

Friday I rose at 9 a.m. and gathered clothes and supplies for my trip to Winona, MN. I cleaned up, straightened the place, ate and was out the door by 10:45 a.m.

100 miles up the road I stopped at my parent's place in Janesville, WI. They were over-accommodating. To the point of being kind of annoying. I ate something small, rested a bit and hit the road again around 4 p.m. Traffic was manageable the following 3 hours.

Pulled over in Winona and picked up a 12 pack of Red Stripe before heading over to the municipal pool Eric works at. Eric got off and we went back to his place, drank a couple of beers, and then Eric took apart the Trek VRX and re-built the Klein Mantra. The new bike is hot. It's almost too showy for daily commute. I don't want somebody to even come close to fucking with it. I may adopt Reuben's habit of locking to the fence line.

Saturday we took a pair of kyacks out onto the Mississippi River. We paddled through a section that I had paddled Shannon in a canoe in a year ago. Thinking of Shannon and our time together then stayed with me all weekend. She and I had spent the better part of two days biking through town together on that trip last June. She's a world different now than she was last year with me. I prefer to think of how she was then.

We stopped and bought meat and vegetables for cabobs, grilled up and then drove in the intense rain through the highway valleys to La Crosse, WI to see Spiderman 2. It was better than I'd thought it would be. Computer animation is improving.

Sunday Eric had to work (until a kid shit in the pool around 4 p.m.), so I got to ride my bike around the area. Shannon and I covered a lot of area last year, because I recognized several sights far enough from Eric's place. I stopped at the crest of a bridge that connects Minnesota to Wisconsin. It was the same place Shannon and I had taken pictures of. I started to recall Wednesday night, and I felt regret and sadness. The girl is someone that I cannot seemingly get along with. I miss her, but when I have met up with the reality of Shannon, and the reality of her life and the reality of the situation, I am at a total loss. She's just too fucking extreme, I can't handle her or the situation. It's haunting. I felt regret that our last meeting broke down into a somewhat drunken, highly dramatic and totally irresponsible public argument. I don't know if I was wrong or pushed it too far, I just did not like what was coming out. It all makes me feel sick.

Sunday night Eric and I drove to a bluff overlooking the river and climbed 600 steps to the top. 600 steps is a lot. It's more than you think. From our perch we saw the firework displays of 8 or 9 neighboring communities. Leaving, we had to slowly crawl down the 600 steps through next to no visibility under the canopy. It was scary. Eric produced a lighter, and we scurried back down quickly.

Today we got breakfast a terrible greasy spoon, and I got out.

Thursday, July 01, 2004

under my thumb

OK. So I meet up with Shannon in typical Tim and Shannon fashion at a dive bar near her place at 11:30 pm -

our first date we met at Emmitts on a Thursday night before midnight. It carried through to bar time, I went to my temp job, then I came back to retrieve my car and stayed until Saturday morning. I guess it went well.

- a dump with no real name other than "Package Goods" below an Old Style sign. It was half-full of drunk old men. There were handprinted signs everywhere telling you not to do certain things like Be Quiet When You Leave (but it was a sign saying that with more like 25 words), and Don't Place Your Beer Here, and All Day Wednesday All Booze $3. This is her local tap of choice, this is the kind of thing that made me fall for her.

She bought me a High Life and we threw a game of darts. I made her laugh easily because she's tuned in to my jackassery. I played songs of liberation on the jukebox - Under My Thumb, I Am The Resurrection, and Heart of Stone. She knew what I was doing and said "Under my thumb
the squirmin' dog who's just had her day... hmmm." So I beat her ass at darts two games in a row.

She suggested a new Irish bar down Lakewood. Nice joint, but each one is the exact same place. She bought me a couple of Stellas and then we started to peel away the band aids. I started it by asking how she was doing, and after a couple minutes of chatter she brought up going to Ireland. I was purposely aloof so she started to talk about how she had seen some Irish fuck earlier in the spring, and that he'd taken her to a wedding there. She said that it came up about a month after she'd found out that her ex of 7 years (the guy prior to me) had gotten married (couple that with her mother getting remarried for the 7th time and not telling the girl or her sister) and that she had felt as if she was "on a spiral." She told me that she enjoyed being with me because I calm her, and that she didn't enjoy being around many people.

Next she told me that the Irish fuck was a "naughty boy" and I cut that shit down immediately by saying "what makes you think I have any interest in talking about this?" Communication began to break down as I questioned what she wanted from me, and then pondered the meaning of "friendship" (such an asshole, I wish that this hadn't gone down over alcohol).

She got angry and left the bar (this has happened before). I sat for a second, thinking about it, and then walked out after her. I told her that I wanted to talk to her, that we should walk down the sidewalk. She resisted and wouldn't look at me. I stood in front of her bike so that she couldn't unlock it and leave. I'm 6'3" and weigh 195 lbs. She's 5'3" and weighs 105 lbs. She began to punch my chest and tried to push me away. Miss Self-Obsessed called me "pompous." She stormed off, I figured to find a bouncer. I watched her walk inside and give me the finger. I shook my head in tired disgust and walked back in. The cute girl bartending looked at me with fear. I smiled and shook my head to reassure her that I wasn't bringing the violence.

She was on the phone with her sister Kasey (this was about 1:30 in the morning) and said "Tim's back." She got off and remained pissed. I'd had too much beer to make a clear point and she was not open to discussion (the stubborn daughter of a doctor), she said some shit I can't recall and I said "never call me again" before walking out, unlocking the bike and riding home.

I think that I infuriate her. I know that she can drive me fucking insane. It's from being close and from being stubborn. There's too much drama with us, and there shouldn't be. It's like alcohol: we can be a part for a couple months, but once back together we are combustible.

At work I wrote her a letter (I'm so emotionally immature that I seem to only be able to express myself with any clarity in the written word - after the second draft) stating what I couldn't say after six beers. She may not be as sour after she reads it, but then again maybe she will. I can never tell. I think I told her my side, my thoughts... my deal.

I gave my friend Reuben the five minute version while I was standing half-naked in a towel at the gym we belong to. He thinks she'll contact me again in the future. Maybe so/maybe not. I don't know.