Thursday, September 30, 2004

social/political/natural environment is changing...

The environment is changing.

I can feel it in the air and in the sunlight. The atmosphere is crisp and the planet is leaving the sun. It causes crazy shit with the weather and Lake Michigan. I rode my bike home on Tuesday night and was amused by the violent waves crashing up over the concrete embankment and splashing back. It's fun to try to time the approaching wave and getting around it. I only got caught once. It's best to avoid these waves, as the current is deceivingly strong... and can pull you off the bike. The headwind was hard and the lake active, but it was a fantastic environment to be in.

Florida has been hit by four hardcore tropical storms, California has been rumbling the past couple of days and Mount St. Helens is showing enough activity to warrant observation.

I am completely and totally fascinated by extreme weather and natural occurrences. I'm in awe. When I was a kid my dad and I would stand in the garage with the door open and watch a hardcore storm pass through. It was so wild to see trees sway violently back and forth - occasionally breaking branches, knocking entire trees down - all due to the incredible force of the pressure in the atmosphere. It's horrifying and beautiful... a natural rollercoaster.

And the fact that magma can rise from deep in the earth and shoot upward to the surface blowing the top of a mountain off - like Mount St. Helens did - is nothing short of awesome. I recall growing up in southern Wisconsin and finding extremely fine ash landing in the neighbor's garden. It traveled 2,200 miles through the atmosphere to land in my neighborhood. Fuck yeah.

I remember an excellent issue of National Geographic (January 1981) a year or two after Mount St. Helens' last eruption in the early 1980's... there was a sequence of photos taken by a hiker showing the sequence of erupted ash getting closer and closer and closer until pitch black. The film was later recovered from the hiker's corpse and developed. Fuckin wicked dude.


On a totally different note, I've been unable to completely get my head around the surreal images taken on the street in NYC after the World Trade Center towers collapsed. This one is the most horrific event caused my man (thus far) during my lifetime: the slaughter of 3,300 innocent Americans. To this day seeing footage of the jets crashing into the buildings and then watching the aftermath makes me tear. The photos that I've seen from that day... photos of people running in the street... people running in fear... people running for their lives... scare me still.

That day looks like a vision of hell. If someone were to show you a photo of an NYC street labeled "September 11, 2001 - 9:40 a.m." one hour before the event, you could never believe it. It's also the photos of the people on the street covered in ash that I find surreal. People who are too shell shocked to respond to what's going on and are just walking home photos like this businessman, this woman doesn't even look real... this man. This photo of people reacting to the sight of the second plane hitting communicates exactly what I was feeling when I saw it on TV... shocked, helpless, frightened.

September 11th is not Iraq. I wish that they would stop connecting the two. September 11th is a wound for all mankind. Iraq is a deliberate act of aggression.

Monday, September 27, 2004


I have had several jobs.

Many, many jobs. So many in fact that I've never really tried to figure out exactly how many... until now. See, I was raised in a blue collar family... so little things like "an allowance" or "a car" were a fucking joke to my parents. I had to go to work early on, and I was never allowed to slack. because "slack" meant "no cash."

So, to any of the five or six readers who only had to work part-time during college summers... or not at all: fuck you. I hate all of you. All of six of you. So, for your education on how the working class thinks, read on.

Oh, and by the way, cry me a fucking river when you don't get that NBC sitcom writing job that you think you deserve (with your creative writing M.F.A.) and you have to settle for that position in your uncle’s (Executive VP) company... and your parents bought you your graduate (as well as bachelor) degree(s) so that you don’t have student loans... and then a new car because you finished in five and a half years... and then paid your rent for the first nine months that you put off actually looking for a job... and kept your checking account full... and gave you extra money so that you could fuck off in Europe for six weeks... and yet you still find cause to bitch. You're a cry baby. Shut the fuck up.

And observe:

1. My first job was working summers for a local farming corporation as a “corn detastler.” Let me emphasize that this is “migrant labor.” You have to be at the bus by 7:30 a.m. (seven days a week). The bus is a piece of shit school bus. They drive you out into the middle of nowhere and you have to walk through a corn field pulling this one part of the plant out of the middle of each stalk. There’s about 2,000 stalks in each row. In the morning the field is drenched of dew, so by the end of the first row your clothes are soaked, your shoes and socks are soaked and muddy, your hands are rough and scratched up, and your legs itch like a motherfucker. Then in the afternoon the sun comes out and fries your ass. You get done sometime around 3 p.m. and then go home and sleep because you're totally wiped out. This little stroll through hell happens when you're 14 years old. This job lasts 4-6 weeks. They don't even pay you until the end of the summer, so it's not like you're getting paid as it goes. And they pay you whatever shit wage was a shit wage in the late 1980's... something pathetic like $4 an hour.

Yeah, ha ha... fuck you.

2. I worked at a grocery store with a couple other 17 year olds and several twenty-somethings. There were lots of locals who didn't go to college... so they settled in with a shit job like working at a grocery store, drank nightly, rejected the withdrawal method, cruised the parking lot blasting Motley Crue or Winger out of the Fiero’s tape deck and wore buttons with their kid’s pictures on their work vest next to their name.
You had to be there and punched in at 1:55 if you had a 2:00 shift. I punched in once at 1:56 and another time at 1:58 during my two month trial employment period, and was fired. I was canned by a 28 year old loser who thought he was this shit nicknamed "Shorty". He was a prick about it. He told me that I was a kid and that I was learning a valuable lesson. I looked at him, smirked, and said "who the fuck cares. nice job, asshole." and walked out. About two years ago I was at the same grocery store picking up items for my mother at Christmas and saw Shorty walking through the store wearing the same loser manager work vest. What a choad.

3. I then took a job cleaning all of the floors and deep fryers at this buffet after hours. It was good because no one else was there and I could listen to music while I mopped the floor. Sometimes I'd let my girlfriend in and she'd give me head in the back office hallway while I looked at pictures of my fat middle-aged co-workers on the employee of the month board to keep from blowing early.

4. After my first year of college I thought that the college that I was attending sucked. It was expensive, in Kenosha, there was no drinking allowed on campus and everybody lived in a dorm. I thought it was pathetic to see 23 year olds bunking with an R.A., so I said fuck sophomore year, and moved to Madison to be a 19 year old college drop out. The first job I got was working at a gas station in the ghetto, and then I quit and worked at a record store after a gun was pulled on one of my co-workers on a different shift at the ghetto gas station. The record store was cool because I got to listen to, and make copies of, imports and because nobody cared if you were high on the job.

5. I worked on a tire assembly line for large trucks produced by GM, lifting 40 lb. rims onto a conveyor belt that moved the rims onto a line that placed the rims inside of tires for 18-wheelers. All of my co-workers had enormous forearms. This was one of those 6 a.m. to 4 p.m. jobs with two 10 minute and one 15 minute breaks during the shift for $6.50 an hour. You weren't allowed to take a piss until your break.
Then I worked at a factory that produced the fiber-cloth liner that goes inside of the trunk of your car, in between the metal and the carpet liner. It was in a warehouse that got to be about 95 degrees in the summertime with no cross wind. Occasionally the cloth would catch fire on the giant weaving machine. It was an awesome and horrific sight. My co-workers were pleasant morons, unaware of how bad they were getting it. I've never met more functionally retarded people working in one place in my life. Somehow they all afforded new cars on lease.

6. I worked as a janitor for one and a half summers for the college I attended in Milwaukee after taking the time off. It was awesome. They hired a bunch of students and we worked for the full-time janitors. My janitor Lucy was an awesome middle-aged black woman who smoked pot and didn’t care if we didn’t do anything. You had to punch in at 7:30 a.m., and then we'd go find an empty dorm room and go to sleep. The main guy Gary (who looked like an adult Dennis the Menace) would make the rounds to all of the dorms. Everyone and anyone had to check in at the front desk, so the girl at the desk would page Lucy to tell her that Gary had entered the building... Lucy would then walk up the hall and say "Gary is here!" and we'd all get up, plug in vacuum cleaners and begin to vacuum as Gary walked the hall inspecting. When he left, we'd go back to sleep for another hour.
At lunch we'd either smoke a j behind the dumpsters in the back of the building and cut in line at the dorm cafeteria and eat for free (we had cashier friends), or go to a bar. We’d come back, work for approximately 45 minutes and then watch TV in the basement lounge. Usually “The People’s Court” followed by “Love Connection.” We got out at 2:30 p.m. everyday and had the rest of the summer day to fuck off. The second summer eight or nine of us got fired in one sweep of the axe because Gary saw us leave 15 minutes early and walk into a bar at lunch time, and then come back 20 minutes late. Walking back in, I got tipped off that Gary was looking for us, so I started to vacuum. Gary came in an said "I saw you guys leave early and go to the bar. I can't have that. I have to let you go." I said "That's cool. I still like you Gary." Gary started to laugh and said "Yeah, I like you guys too." Gary was cool.

7. I got a job at a bank processing loan applications with a bunch of old women. It was super lame, but they paid $10 an hour and let me listen to headphones while I pile-drove through this easy work. I got the job after taking a bottle of my friend Shawn's piss to the last interview. The whole time that this old lady talked to me, all I could do was smile, nod and think “I’m carrying a bottle of piss inside my pants.” I had Shawn piss into a Evian water bottle, then I crushed it flat and had it snug tight against my waist, held in place by my belt. Then she walked me through the department and I shook hands with 30 people… hoping that that the bottle didn’t come loose in my stride and slip down my pant leg to the floor. You can’t explain that. You have to walk. I took the bottle to an off-site clinic and squirt Shawn’s piss into a cup during the drug test. I got the job. I quit when school started again, so they gave me a raise to $12 an hour and let me work part-time in between classes.

8. I got a job selling advertising space in the college paper to the local liquor stores. I took photos of the burnouts who delivered kegs to parties and wrote ad copy with jackass headlines like “You tap… I’ll pump.”

9. I got a summer internship at a marketing agency working for a hot 28 year old named Carolyn. She took a liking to me when I told her that I was surprised that she was older than me (23). Carolyn dated the agency owner's son... a 30 year old prick who worked at the agency after failing at all attempts to establish himself elsewhere. He wore golf shirts and drove an SUV. I then got a copywriting internship at an ad agency where I wrote radio ads about Velcro lace-up b-ball shoes for Foot Locker and worked on the shoot of a TV ad for a website. One task I got was getting to choose "the talent" from a stack of headshots. We hired a hot 26 year old local model who spent the entire morning being filmed tapping her fingers on a keyboard and smiling at a blank computer monitor.

10. I worked the door at a popular Milwaukee bar. The drink of choice among the door guys was jack and coke. We'd swallow a hit of trucker speed - that over-the-counter asthma medication sold at truck stops - and wash it down with three or four stiff pints of jack and coke.
I learned how to be direct with people. Some drunk would come to the door when the place was packed and I’d tell him that we were capacity and that he had to wait. He’d either listen to me or stare at me. If he stared at me I’d look him direct in the eye and repeat what I’d said. He’d either back down or hand me $10 and I’d let him in. One time I stood at the door at close, making sure that no one snuck out a bottle of beer or drink. A super drunk guy came to the door from outside and wanted to come in. It was 2:37 a.m. State law said that we had to have everyone out by 2:30 a.m. There were cops all over the streets, and they were serious about this law. They’d fine the owners and fuck with their liquor license. Anyways, the drunk walked up and I told him that he couldn’t come in. He looked at me like I was some fuckin stupid kid. He said “let me in. I gotta piss,” and pulled a police badge from his wallet. I looked at the badge and said “well, because you’re a cop you know that we can’t have anyone in here past 2:30… so why don’t you go piss in the street and when a cop comes up to you, you can show him that badge.” He looked at me and then walked away. Fuck with cops when you can.

11. I got a job for the summer after college stocking Nabisco products on the shelves at grocery stores 40 miles away in Kenosha. I drive 40 miles each way. My boss was a total stroke. He was a couple years older and was clearly pissed that I was a college graduate and would only be working for the summer before moving on. Making small talk, I asked where he was staying in town... if he was a renter, homeowner, what? He told me that he lived in "a luxury condominium" and then later asked me "if I was making it or faking it." (as in money). What a fucking tool, he knew what I made an hour. The week that he was on vacation, he’d still stop by the stores once or twice to see how everything was going. Most of the time he’d over-order his weekly delivery, and the stores would refuse and send back the pallets. He told me that he’d asked his manager for a raise and had been denied. He was a total joke. I must admit to taking advantage of the nightly call in your hours and mileage deal though. I knew that I was out at the end of the summer, so I ran with it. Throughout August I averaged $800 a week. I quit and moved to Chicago.

12. I worked the door of an Irish bar on Sunday nights. There was never any trouble, I got to drink, I didn't have to clean anything or carry the band's equipment and they paid me $75 cash at the end of the night for working 9 p.m. to 2 a.m. After the band finished at midnight the only people left were white collar alcoholics and off the boat Irish. They used to play Cher’s “I Believe in Life After Love” at least three times before close. To this day I cannot get that song out of my head. I had to quit after a few months though because it made Monday morning at my straight job a total bitch.

13. I worked for an ad agency doing the media planning for TV and radio broadcast of a major fast food chain. I had to be to work at 8 a.m. sharp and usually left around 6:30 p.m. Even in the summer. In between 8 and 6:30 I got yelled at on the phone by New Yorkers. This paid $24,000 a year. I hated this job because I hate math. Fuck math! I also hated it because I was trying to get a copywriting job. On my last day I hid over 50 pictures of Charles Bronson throughout my cubicle.

15. I eventually got a copywriting job. I wrote about it last week in the "personal evolution" entry.

16. Presently I write advertising for a major non-profit association. So far so good. It can be boring... and there's a lot of useless fucks attempting to justify their job... but it's work.

That's what work is. It's work.

Friday, September 24, 2004

feeling that grit on your teeth

that shit buildup when you don't brush your teeth for three weeks...

it's like - fuckin - making out with a 50 year old prostitute... after freebasing behind a dumpster in an alley.

at 8:45 am on a tuesday before work...

after being up all night...


not going home...

in the same stale clothes as yesterday...

no deoderant...

going directly back to work so that you're not late again...

because you're gonna get your ass fired.

ahh... "tuesday".

Wednesday, September 22, 2004


So I have this bike - the Trek VRX - that I bought from my friend Eric in 2001 for $250. It's worth way more than that, but we've been friends for 20+ years and he already had 17 bikes (bike mechanic who used to work for Trek HQ in Whitewater, WI.). I was his best man,.. so that means that I'm publicly his "greatest friend" (besides his wife). Anyways, this is a special bike... this particular frame was the prototype for the entire line of VRX bikes... the fucking very first one made. Eric used to hop it off of service ramps. So, Trek was going to throw it away, and Eric rescued it from the dumpster, upgrade components and eventually sold it to me for $250.

I had some great times on that bike, and took it to some amazing places... all over Chicago, my old stomping grounds in Milwaukee, bombed over UW Madison's campus and 250 miles around the Puget Sound. I was even in two accidents (no helmet) that could've fucked me up bad, but I walked unmarked: once over the handle bars when coming to a dead stop from 24 mph and nearly colliding with some idiot who lazily pulled onto the street from a sidewalk down a lane in Chicago that had no streetlights. Pitch black. And the time I got doored at 20 mph by some yuppie bitch on a cell phone and her enormous SUV door. I dropped into traffic, got up and was not harmed. She, however, was totally freaked out. She'd been sitting in that fucking truck on the phone for a few minutes. I asked her to be sure to look next time.

So, this summer one of the swingarms on the back of the bike cracked down the weld, fucking the bike up and making it un-rideable. Dangerous. Over the 4th of July I took it up to Minnesota, Eric stripped it down and rebuilt El Scorpio with the VRX's parts. Two months ago I took the VRX to a bike store in the city that I hate (I took it there only because it's a Trek dealer) to have Trek take care of it under warranty. Understandably, it's take Trek two fucking months to "take care of it." But, they've come through for me handsomely. Instead of repairing the VRX they're giving me a new Fuel 90 frame. This is generous. I'm going to see the frame outright, and use the money towards a track bike I've had my eye on.

Otherwise, life is lame. I'm waiting to hear back from someone I got into a massive fight with long ago (and hadn't been much in contact prior to that fight). I don't think I'll be hearing back from them. At the time, I really needed them to stop calling me and stay out of my life, so in arguement I very effectively let them know that I was through. I thought that the pushing away (which I'm not used to) and revenge (which I'm not used to) would drive the person away (it did), and make me feel better about the situation and my role in the situation (it hasn't). I don't even know what I want to say to them. All I can think of is reminding them that they'd been cruel... but they don't want to hear that, and I doubt that they'll openly allow themselves to walk into that talk again. I don't think I'll be hearing back from them.

I have no answers.

Tuesday, September 21, 2004

flawed human

"What is Hell? I maintain that it is not being able to love; and for that, one does not need Eternity. A day will do, or even a moment." Fyodor Dostoevsky

I believe:

...that time is wasted. What I would say today I'd put off until tomorrow because of pride or fear.

...that pain is real, and that emotional pain hurts more, cuts deeper and lasts longer than physical pain.

...that God and Satan is inside each of us/everyone knows the difference between right and wrong.

...that it is almost impossible to not judge/it is human.

...that God is physically beyond description and that Satan is humanly seductive and beautiful.'s possible to feel as free as a child while an adult/these moments are fleeting and do not last.

...that everyone has a handful of golden days coming to them in the near future/no matter how bad the situation is right now.

...that anyone can be suprised and touched by genuine kindness.

...that riding a bike makes you free.

...that knowingly hurting others weighs on your soul.

...that you should occasionally scare yourself.

...that more people care about you and are thinking about you than you know.

...that no one is better than anyone else and that we will all one day be dirt.

...that everyone has personal control/but zero control over their environment.

...that regrets can last years.

...that escape is the best way to get out of a bad situation. Follow that up with silence.

...that chemicals are a mask.

...that you can see the soul of someone you love.

...that imagination can be a good friend as well as your worst enemy.

...that advertising is a lie, art is communication and that art is life. You are an actor.

...that it's a good idea to break something when I'm angry. I think it's powerful to see where that intense energy went, and what it did to that broken chair.

...that a relationship is codependence, and that the greatest fear and reason for avoiding committment is the thought of one day losing it and watching it leave.

...that organized religion is good in that it gives people faith.

...that people are inherently good.

today's entry is all off the top of my head. I read the Dostoevsky quote earlier and in swam around in my brain for a couple of hours. I thought that I'd try something different today. Usually I hate this kind of shit. My mother enjoys forwarding these types of emails to me because I think that she finds them profound. I usually read the top three and then delete. If you even got far enough to be reading this, I commend you.

Be true.

Monday, September 20, 2004


After... literally 3 minutes of searching... I finally found a copy of Madonna's Sex on the internet in PDF form.

It's crazy to think that she's writing lame children's books now... when a mere 10 years ago she was wiping baby DNA off of her stomach and ass after photo shoots with a dog (page 16) and motherfuckin' Vanilla Ice (pages 21-23). I wonder which part she regrets the most now: releasing a soft core photo album or releasing a soft core photo album featuring Vanilla Ice?

My weekend was weird. Immediately after work I cancelled getting a drink with Ellen so that I could rush home and watch the documentary Capturing the Friedmans which turned out to be about a Long Island father and son who were accused of, arrested and sent to prison for raping kids. The documentary expertly edits together home movie footage shot by the Friedmans, 1980's news footage, new interviews with surviving family members, police, lawyers and victims. The subject matter disgusts me, but by the end of the film you're not certain if the Friedmans jailed were actually guilty of the crimes charged, or merely had fucked up fetishes... let me re-phrase that: I think the son Jesse got railroaded, and the father Arnie was a sick fuck who may not have been guilty of raping kids in his home, but had an unhealthy fetish for children.

So, pick this one up at Blockbuster. And while you're there pick up a copy of "Schindler's List". Make it a double feature night.

After that voyage into the realm of the damned, my friend Dave came over with some smoke and we met up with Ellen and her spaced out friends at the Lincoln Station. We dropped the lasses off at the door and went to find parking. 20 minutes later I decided that I didn't want to pay the full $30 entrance for 90 minutes of beer or liquor. The door guy wouldn't let me and Dave into the party room. Ellen tried to get the guy to cut us the $15 rate he gave her and Carol. He said he couldn't do it. She kept hassling him. He stood firm. Finally I said "it's ok. We'll just drink at the bar until the party deal is over with and then we'll go in."

Ellen was mad at me for cutting it short and giving in. Ellen doesn't understand a couple things (beyond being a man, I was a doorguy at a large, busy bar in college):

1. the doorguy will extend a half-off rate to women (but never, never) to another man. Half off now means half off later.

2. the doorguy already said "no" to extending the half off rate to two guys. There's no way in hell that he'd go back on his decision five minutes into it... especially caving in to some half drunk girl, or any girl for that matter when there's another man plus less cash involved.

I've been in this guy's place before. I appreciate what a pain in the ass it can be, and that's why I backed off. $30 for 90 minutes is no deal, Mickey Mantle.

At 11 the doors opened and we entered a truly underwhelming crowd of overweight 30 year old guys with receeding hairlines, sweat and dress shirts and dozens of drunk early 30's women. One of which looked any good. Two more drinks and we were out.

Dave dropped us off at my place and we went up to the roof to drink some Red Stripes and enjoy the warm clear evening.

Saturday I felt like ass... like I was getting the flu. I rested up, felt better and then went on a 15 mile bike ride. Rick came over that night with Billy and Heather and we got a couple intense games of foosball in. rank a few High Lifes and then shot pool at the Lincoln Tap Room. I like that bar,.. well spaced out, decent deals and for some reason there's usually not too many pricks (there's a lot of pricks in Chicago). I was feeling sick again, so we went back to my place for more foosball and beer. They left around 2 a.m.

Sunday was a beautiful day so I went for a 20 mile bike ride with Matt and checked out a couple of record and book stores in Wicker Park and spent some time in the sunshine. That night I saw Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow. I wanted it to be good/it was OK. It picked up during the 20 minutes that Angelina Jolie's in it. Damn, she's fine.

Friday, September 17, 2004

personal evolution

In the year 2000 I was hired by a university on the south side of Chicago to re-write their undergraduate admissions program. This consisted of four viewbooks (brochures) plus several supporting brochures and direct mail pieces. I was hired for $27,500. This was actually a bump up from my first job out of school... working TV/radio/outdoor media for $22,000. I was very pleased to be hired on at the university because I had been working towards getting a copywriter job since I'd decided that I wanted to write ads for a living while I was in college during the mid-90's.

I found the environment in the marketing department at the university to be extremely slow paced, yet highly volatile in its professional politics and frequent firings/hierarchy re-arrangements. So, basically, it was a shit job in a shit environment.

Writing a campaign for a university your first time out as a professional writer is a bigger, more stressful job than you can imagine. Its scope is literally enormous. To make matters worse, the three staff designers that I was working with on the project (and leaned on, learned from, followed) were fired once the basic design was approved by the admissions department. I was then handed a rolodex of freelance designers and told to start interviewing. I quickly chose a designer with an office close to the university and began to bust ass. I spent countless hours and fought countless headaches to keep the project on schedule. I had to hire and supervise photographers and photoshoots, work with the admissions people, keep everything on budget, and work with the egos who ran the business side as well as the academic side of the school. In hindsight, only my naivety and fear of losing my job kept the project on schedule, on budget and on task.

That summer I had broken up with a girlfriend I'd dated for a year, so I kind of needed to have something occupying my time. I was poor, I was blue and I was up to my neck in work and stress. It was a potent combination for kicking ass.

After all of the photos had been taken, the designs and copy approved and the printer chosen, I spent 36 hours catching a couple hours of sleep here and there while I was on press check for my campaign. See, when 100,000 copies of anything is being printed, they don't turn the printers off, they run until the job is complete. Printers print four to eight pages at a time, and when that run of 100,000 pieces is complete, they begin the next round, and it's my job to approve the sheet before they begin the real run. I have to approve the colors and have one last final chance to change any copy before a potential grammatical error is permanent. Thus, every four hours for 36 hours I was at the printer approving press checks. It was insanity.

When the viewbooks were delivered everyone was very pleased with them. For a period of time I had total respect as the marketing guy from several of the higher ups plus academics that I'd gotten to know while working on the project. An old man who'd retired from my department named Jerry congratulated me for finishing the project. Apparently nothing ever really gets done at the school and everyone thought it was a BS dream that the in-house marketing department could complete the job. The directors of the department were kind of stupid... they hired a kid (me) with no real experience and no real portfolio to write their campaign, and I did it. A year later admissions recorded a 23% increase in the size of their freshman class. Being that 1/3 of the students were foreign, it was a highly difficult school to be accepted into, and it was literally across the street from highly violent Chicago housing projects, the viewbooks I wrote must be credited with a good deal of this increase.

Later that year, amongst the upheaval of the directors, a new director - John - was hired to run admissions. John is a fat, balding, middle aged asshole. He made it very clear immediately that he was an expert at print marketing (he quickly proved to not know shit) and that he was in charge. He let me know that he thought I was a kid and that I didn't know what I was doing, that I was lucky. He'd come from another Chicago university where he had ruled. He was a micro-manager. He brought with him an ad agency whom he'd worked with for several years and a printer who turned out to be his brother in law.

I could see the writing on the wall... my department and my job were going to be eventually edged out. I brought this up to my department and got nowhere. Sitting in my director Dorothy's office and reporting her the rundown of events and where it was headed turned into a total waste of my time. Midway through my discussion she took a picture of me with her palm pilot digital camera and said "we should get one of these for all of the admissions counselors for their college fairs!" It was obvious to me that she wasn't listening, didn't care and was a fucking idiot. She didn't make the connection that admissions was one of the department's largest and most high profile accounts, and that losing it may also mean that she may eventually lose her job (which she eventually did). Total fucking idiot!

As time passed, John made sure to be as much of an asshole as he could possibly be. It was his intent to break me, to get me to quit. I looked for another job on the side, but it was the fourth quarter of 2002 and the economy was shit. I stubbornly challenged John on everything: the success of my viewbooks meant that there was no need to pay this outside ad agency the $85,000 they'd already racked up in meetings, travel and bullshit design work. I knew for fact that admissions had only budgeted $35,000 for the year. I felt I'd earn the right to an opinion... especially to some jerkoff who was blazing through way too much money and had just walked into a success story. John's brother in law the printer had had a scam going on at John's last college where the printer had recieved a permanent no-bid contract to print everything. Given the volume of direct mail and print pieces, this equals several hundred thousand dollars a year. It was just shady. It seemed obvious (to me anyways) that John and the printer were fleecing the school(s) with their arrangement. I tried to communicate this with my bosses, as well as a couple higher ups. It got me nowhere.

At 6'3" 200 lbs with a lean athletic build, I suppose that I was a bit of an intimidating presence to the short, fat, middle-aged John. At heart John is a coward. He spent the better part of the fall of 2002 slipping out of a room that I'd enter and generally weasling away from me. This is because John is a pussy. He gotten to where he's gotten by backstabbing, cheating and fucking people over.

Two weeks before Christmas 2002 I was called in by the communications VP and told that my position was being eliminated effective immediately. I was stunned, but not totally suprised. I went back to my desk, explained what had happened to my colleagues, grabbed a couple items and got the fuck out of there. I recieved a two week severence.

I eventually had to hassle with the university to get them to cut me a check for the 70 hours of vacation time I'd racked up. This consisted of me going to the financial office in my black sweatshirt, black running pants and black stocking hat and walking one moron from one office, to another moron signing something in another office, to walking with another moron to an account office and getting that moron to cut me a check. What the fuck? I had nothing but time on my hands, and the 5 o'clock shadow and nearly disgruntled look on my face ensured that I was getting paid. Today.

I was out of work for the next eight months. I got by with random temp jobs, unemployment checks and delivering subs (occasionally to people I went to college with). I found that I was usually tipped very well. I figured it was because they were suprised to see a white person delivering subs, and assumed that I needed it.

Eventually I got another writing job and have been here for a year. Somethings piss me off, but I've grown thick skin concerning self bloated egos and the whatnot. I silently understand that there aren't many real men in the office environment, and that I am capable of enduring a great deal of shit that may break others. I can out-wit, out-drink, out-fight, out-fuck and out-last many of the "men" I must deal with daily.

I write this today because I ran into and grabbed lunch with an old co-worker, and we caught up. I ran a google search on John and found that he had recently taken a position with a noteable university in St. Louis... a true step up. His entrance bio stated that during his two and a half years at the school in Chicago, he'd inceased first year enrollment by a staggering 57%. Pure genius. I'll assume that John needed to find a new job - he'd surely pissed off at least a couple of the wrong people - and even though I recall that he had junior high school aged kids a couple years back, he'd probably fucked too many people over in Chicago and was forced to relocate.

He is someone that I can honestly say deserves whatever happens to him. Karma has a way of circling back and fucking you up if you've been bad (I've caught it,.. it's a bitch). John will one day catch his.

In the end I received what I considered to be good news a year after my lay off: the ad agency hired (with the staff of 4 copywriters) only changed the design of the viewbooks and didn't change any of the copy I'd written because the copy worked. It was a success. It was my first success. When I was in college and decided that I wanted to be a copywriter, I'd set a goal to write something that people all over the country would read or see, by the time I turned 30. Working on this university admissions campaign, I wrote and produced a body of work that was distributed throughout North America, Europe, the Middle East,.. the world. And I did it by the time I'd turned 27. This is an accomplishment that I'm very proud of, and something that I feel is worth all of the bullshit and all of the assholes that I've had to deal with to get where I am, and evolved into who I've become.

Lessons learned:

1. fight for your principles
2. stand up for yourself
3. don't fuck with people
4. don't be a pussy
5. be a man
6. always kick maximum ass

Thursday, September 16, 2004

idle hands are evil hands

today I'm just tired as fuck. I don't really understand why because I was in bed by 11:30 last night, and that's early for me. I only drank three Stellas last night, but that shouldn't matter because that never matters. I'm bored. Bored across the board.

This weekend Rick comes back from Michigan because it's his birthday. I'd forgotten, so I went online and got him a poster on Henry Rollins' website. He'll dig it because

(1) he doesn't expect me to give him anything for his birthday
(2) it's signed by Rollins
(3) it's a picture of a naked chick covered with $100 bills y'all.

Rick currently lives in Flint, MI. with his girlfriend at his girlfriend's mother's place. He probably won't be hanging it up. It would be rad if he did.

Rick's deal: we became friends at college when we were both out for the rowing team. Rick had rowed at his military high school, so he was already way into it (I was a total novice). At first I thought he was a punk with his Basic cigarettes free promotional baseball hat and 18 year old attitude. I quickly grew to respect him in the boat, he was a powerhouse.

Near the end of his freshman year he got busted by the university, and then the police department for breaking into his dorm's store and stealing food (no money) with some of his jackass friends. Somehow this was considered a felony (buy a lawyer, buy your way out) and Rick was kicked out of the dorm (but not school). Rick asked me if he could crash on my couch, and my roommates didn't care, so for the last month of school Rick wore the same three changes of clothes and finished classes.

We remained friends throughout college, and my last summer in the city before moving to Chicago I lived at his house. It was a good summer... after working all day stocking shelves with Nabisco products, I'd come home, call in my hours and mileage (I raped em, this was a summer job, I was out of there at the end of August anyways), light a j and then Rick and I would play a couple games of chess before heading out to a bar or a movie with friends that were still in town.

That fall I moved to Chicago and Rick finished his last year and a half in school, getting two degrees - one in mechanical engineering and the other in electrical engineering. Rick soon figured out that he hated engineers, thought they were all hard-ons, and didn't enjoy the work environment. So he decided to go to the University of Tennessee - Institute of Space for a graduate degree and to become an astronaut. Living in a trailer, Rick decided that he hated Tennessee, didn't like his teachers or fellow students and didn't want to be an astronaut anymore so he moved back to Chicago and got a place with his girlfriend.

Rick decided that he wanted to teach high school, so he enrolled in DePaul's credentialling program for education and got a job as a butcher at Whole Foods. A year later he was hired to teach Physics to flunk out students at an impoverished, predominantly hispanic high school on the southwest side of Chicago. He bought a condo, moved in, and decided after two years that he hated teaching. He thought the system was fucked, the union was ineffective, his co-workers were an angry bunch and that his students didn't care. He feared burn-out, so he bought a car wash in Flint, MI.

His girlfriend's mother had owned a number of car washes in the Flint metro area for several years and hooked Rick up with the deal. Rick quit his teaching job, rented out the condo and moved with girlfriend to girlfriend's mother's house. He says that Flint is totally different from Chicago. I think I believe him, site unseen.

Because running a car wash is relatively hands off, and because he hired a minimum wage 19 year old (who he's been buying bud off of) to sit there, he's got plenty of time on his hands. Idle hands are evil hands. So now Rick is getting involved in real estate to pass the time.

idle hands are evil hands.

Wednesday, September 15, 2004

quirky and unstable

so my sister just got a job. it'll be a good one - but an asskicker. I don't know if she knows that yet, but she will soon. to celebrate I helped her choose and buy a bike last night. it's a nice ride. I also just found out that I'm going to get a $50 bonus for referring her. Finally some payback for all of the legwork. Actually, I think they could do a little better than $50.

I think I need a new job. I've kind of figured out how to do mine efficiently, I don't see any big pay increase on the horizon and the annual bonus is rather low. The job in the other department that I looked into is leading nowhere. I haven't heard shit. I figure that's how they reject you these days: dead silence. So, I've got a copyediting class coming up, I'll complete that and then see what's available. The problem is, I can get the same job that I have now pretty much anywhere in the city for maybe $10,000 more... but it'll be the same job. The other job here that I wanted would be the boost in my career that I kind of need right now.

Tonight I'm going to some writer thing at the Hideout with Todd and his roomate Tim. Sarah had to cancel out on going. She left me a message last night that I heard this morning. She's got to work today tonight and tomorrow and then she's going to L.A. for the weekend. I kind of like her messages because they're rambling stream of thought. She once told me that she usually cries at least once a day. She's very attractive, funny, has great style, is quirky and unstable. Obvious cracking insanity best to be kept at arm's length.

Tuesday, September 14, 2004

Monster's Ball

Monster's Ball could be re-named Worst Luck Ever.

They set out to write the most depressing movie of all time. They succeeded.

It's about Sling Blade working as a death row prison guard with his son - the Austrailian with the south Georgia accent - and the execution of Puff Daddy. Catwoman co-stars as Puff Daddy's ex-wife and mother to his fat son.

Eventually, they put Puff Daddy in the electric chair and Sling Blade freaks out on his son for puking half way through Puff Daddy's death march. Sling Blade's son is sick of constantly getting fucked with, so he attempts to win his father's love by immitating the "catch the bullet with your chest" trick that he saw on Jackass on the MTV. He failed. His grandfather - Peter Boyle - sat through the whole thing and accurately remarked that Sling Blade's son was "weak."

Some other shit goes down, like Puff Daddy's fat son getting run down by a car, but all of that pales in comparison to the all too brief sex scene between Sling Blade and Catwoman. It wasn't sexy, it was depressing.

Just like the rest of this movie, "depressing."

Monday, September 13, 2004

fucking amateurs dude

I woke up around 4:30 this morning and I was alone. I had this fucked up feeling of indigestion in my chest... like heart burn. I've been getting that more lately even though I've been cutting down on eating greasy shit. Sometimes I feel bad when I wake up alone, but it's gotten better. I didn't feel bad this morning. I drank a glass of white grape juice and went back to sleep.

On friday I went over to my sister's apartment for her get together. It was a pretty good time, her apartment is turning out to be really nice. Saturday I took dog out for a long walk and then went to the liquor store to pick up beer. I got home, had a smoke and then began to sweep, dust and clean the joint. With only 48 hours the dog's hair shead had spread everywhere. I love to have her over, but the sheading is incredible. Around 6 my friend Rick came over with Heather, Billy and Adam (a kid I don't like. He's cheap and ignorant. And fat. And he has the same buzzed haircut with the same black t-shirt, jeans and black Vans on everytime I've seen him. He grew up with Rick, so that's why they're still friends). Later Matt and Lisa came by, then Ellen and her friends.

It was getting later and we were still waiting on my sister and her friends to show. I knew that I wouldn't make the 9 o'clock meet up with Misterios and Cutter, so I left a voice mail for Cutter and we waited until sister and sister posse showed at 9:30. Some of us were pissed, but there was too many in the place, so everyone grabbed a bottle for the road and we walked it to the fest.

It was too late to buy tickets, and there were too many people at the fest, so we got in line at Huettenbar. We lost a few enroute, but that's cool. What sucked was that one of my sister's friends was bitching about being hungry and wanted to leave. That silently bugged me for a few reasons:

1. I like the hungry girl's boyfriend (we'd had a great conversation about Henry Rollins and the debate on whether punk is dead... it's not), and he was going to have to leave, and I had just bought him a beer.

2. This meant that my sister was leaving also.

3. We (as in myself and everyone at my place before them) had to wait at least an hour later than we wanted to for them to show up. Hello? the e-mail said around 6,.. we waited for your hungry hippo ass until 9:30.

4. It was 10 o'clock. Who in their right mind doesn't eat something before they go out for the night? Are you really that new at this? Fucking amateur.

Sunday I walked the dog to get coffee and see how crowded the fest was. On the walk back my mom called to say that they were waiting at my front door. My mind raced to recall if I'd put the paraphernalia away (I hadn't). So I walked the dog home, saw the parents and told them that I wanted to put some shoes on while they played with the dog. Got upstairs, put the paraphernalia in its hiding place, socks, laced up shoes, back outside. We went to sister's for awhile and then back to my place and went to the fest.

It was a beautiful sunny 80 degree day with little humidity. We all ate some german food and drank a large Becks. Several people, and many with small children approched to pet the dog. A few even took pictures with the dog. She's an exceptionally beautiful german shepard, and extremely docile and chill, so she is approached often. She likes the attention. We went back to my place, the parents left with the dog and sister, I ate and then Rick and I went back to the fest for another drink.

Friday, September 10, 2004

use your mind

If you're a Republican in 2004, that's like a public admission that you're stubborn and illogical... with your head planted firmly up your tight ass. You like to see the imagery, the ideology.. and you're sure as fuck not attempting to read into reality.

The Bush administration's marketing advisors know this, and contuinue to feed your dumb ass one line of shit after the next. If you buy into this, you were at one time secretly a stupid person, but now you've been outted. You have as much sense as a 6 year old. You're an adult child. And I'm only talking about the shitheads who graduated from state-funded 3rd tier colleges...

The Republicans have another campaign of propaganda aimed directly at the typical, passive, football watching, beer drinking American dumbass. They've got your wrestlemania mentality juiced up with their Shock and Awe opening satelite rocket explosions and America Kicks All Ass Take No Prisoners Kill Em All bullshit. They're making you think that Kerry is soft on terrorism, and is, essentially, a total pussy.

I think you're buying it. And because you're buying it, you have publicly admitted to not having critical thinking skills.

Clue in motherfuckers,.. the two jagoffs feeding you this line of shit are a guy who was able to get out of serving through his father's connections, and then didn't even follow through on his obligated service.

Consider it, fuckhead, they can't find a single person who can recall serving with George W. If they could, he'd be front and center singing W's praise.

And the other who took a total of five deferments to avoid service, and is now benefitting financially from this little military endeavor.

Amazingly, it's these two who are questioning the validity of a man who signed up to go to war (after graduating from Yale), served two terms and was awarded for valor... including the purple heart for injury while in combat.

All of this happening in full view of the public. And it's not being scruitinized by the "liberal" media. It's surreal.

So, college educated Republican, by endorsing this administration you are acknowledging that everything that has been revealed about your leadership is of no concern to you and is probably just something that the liberal media came up with to try to discredit your God-fearing leader.

You are stupid.


This comes up because I've been engaged in an online debate with my uncle this week - a 43 year old man living in an upper middle class twin cities suburb of white people and SUVs. By that description alone I think that you understand that his version of reality is probably a lot different from most people's. Anyways, a short bit from this exchange...

ME: The right can attack the opposition from any angle of propaganda they want... they just don't seem to have any clue as to how to solve the problems and the mess they've created on their own. We shouldn't be in Iraq. My mother would think a whole lot differently about this if I were 19 years old, and the family would probably be reconsidering their arguments if the other male cousins were each 5 years older than they are now.

UNCLE: Lets talk about Propaganda! Ask Michael Moore about his Propaganda movies or all of the news media with the help of certain movie/music people. They want the people in this country to give up! Give up our freedoms, no smoking, no fast foods, no Military, give up our religions, take in God we trust off our currency, remove him from the class room and any other public place, give up our way of life. Let the government decide how we should live and spend our money. Sounds like a failed system that we want no part of.

Maybe we should just pull out! Say sorry we made a mistake. No weapons of mass destruction Here! Take your leader back he will get things back in order. Your people do not deserve freedom your better off with a cruel dictator to teach your children about hate and killing others who have freedom and better lives than you! It sounds like to me we have to stay the course. See that the people can get control of their own country and make it work. They should be fine ounce they get stability. I would think that other nations who wanted to sit our during the hard work stage will want to soon join in when its time to make some money.

Your mother would feel the same regardless of your age! She knows what is right and just. Would you have joined for service duty? Last I have checked we have no military draft! Don't know that would have had to worry about our kids going to war for now anyway. Weren't the Democrats wanting to start the draft again? Thought I heard something in the news about that. I guess that was some of their Propaganda to shake the American peoples resolve towards the war.

I think that Bush has a clear understanding on where we are going and his goal is clear. To keep us safe! To build a better economy with less government control. I think that its taking longer in Iraq then he expected to get the terrorist rooted out. But they have made great progress as well. Don't look to CBS NBE ABC to tell you about any of that. They want control through the liberals.

We have to root out the people and stop things before they get to that level. We can't just stick our heads in a sand bucket and let things happen.


Take from that what you want.

Here's a few points that I'll be making today in response to Uncle's statements:

1. Michael Moore creates filmed editorials. He seems to be the only mainstream liberal with the nuts to openly question the establishment and present information for debate. The CBS Nightly News with Dan Rather does not address certain ties, scenerios, allegiences or aspects of the administration's conduct. This "liberal media" is a propaganda tool of the Right. That's why 3 corporations dominate the FCC and each of Rupert Murdoch's 150+ newspapers around the world endorsed Bush's war. When the establishment is questioned by a citizen on a soapbox with a megaphone, the Right will always discredit the person as a "yahoo" or "propaganda."

Oh, by the way, You Are Free. Keep On Working.

2. If I recall correctly, all of the current changes and questions regarding my personal freedoms, and the involvement of government in my life have come up during the past three years. Under the current administration.

3. It is the ultimate act of arrogance to believe that the current administration could inject democracy into a culture that we do not understand. If the Iraqis were so supportive of our invasion to bring freedom, how come we now have 1,000 dead US soldiers? I don't see a welcome mat anywhere. We are invaders, and we are being ambushed by their Minute Men. Open your eyes.

4. The draft is waiting in the wings.

5. "We have to root out the people and stop things before they get to that level. We can't just stick our heads in a sand bucket and let things happen." read: I do what I am told.

use your mind.

Wednesday, September 08, 2004

beaten down and drained

I'm beaten down and drained. It's a minor miracle that I even got up and showed up to work today.

My friend Kari came through with free tickets to the Cubs game last night. I drank three $5 buds at the park, and then after the game we met up with Sarah and drank more. Sarah was kind of freaked because she got her ass fired yesterday for burning the bacon at work (in other news: they have bacon at work), and then (accidently) sending an Instant Message to her boss telling him that she was happy that she did it and had hoped that it pissed him off. Stupid. Hot hot stupid stupid girl.

Around 12:30 we walked back to kari's so that I could retrieve my bike and then Sarah and I walked over to the Newport for another drink. Rick was there (big suprise) and we then closed the place down. I kept her entertained with stories of reckless youth. I was more fun ten years ago. I like her, but I'm keeping a distance... she's hot and funny and irresponsible and kind of dumb and sort of crazy and has a bit of bad luck, or is just plain stupid.

I don't always like being single, but I don't have the drive or the desire to be aggressive or find a new girlfriend. And I still got the chip on my shoulder telling me to walk immediately if anything rubs me wrong. I should probably try to get over that before I purposely subject another person to my erratic and occassionaly violent mood swings.

I need a bag.

What a dick.

Tuesday, September 07, 2004

avoid chainsaws


There were over 28,500 chain saw injuries in 1999. More than 36 percent were injuries to the legs and knees.

* The average chainsaw injury requires 110 stitches and the average medical cost was $5,600 in 1989. Data according to The Davis Garvin Agency, an insurance underwriter specializing in loggers insurance. In 2000, corresponding costs can be estimated to be over $12,000.
* Medical costs for chainsaw injuries based on these facts amount to about $350 million per year.


anyways, I purchased a DVD player for $40 yesterday at Best Buy (actually it'll come out to $30 after I mail in the $10 rebate... see, finance majors, $40 - $10 = $30). I was actually a bit sad to have caved in and gotten one. While I've embraced several aspects of our 21st century technology, I've always kind of liked the fact that I've been given over 40 DVDs in the past couple of years, but have had no system to play them on. Most of them are loaned out, and have been on loan for over two years. I tried to reclaim my copy of From Dusk Till Dawn six months ago from Rick, but he asked "why? did you get a DVD player?" when I said no, he told me that I didn't need it back. I agreed.

It struck me that VHS is dead a few weeks ago when I went into Blockbuster and saw the shit selection they've got left over for VHS. VHS is silently and effectively being killed off. You read it here first. Someone should leak this to the press.

Because my TV was manufactured sometime during 1983 or 1984 I don't have the necessary jacks in the back of the set, and now have to purchase a "RF Modulator". whatever dude.


I got a voice mail this morning around 9:40 from my friend Sarah telling me that she had just quit/been fired from her shit job, and that she wanted to chat about it this evening. That sucks, I knew that she hated the job, and from what she told me, the owner was super shady (she and the 5 or 6 other employees were never totally certain that their paychecks would clear), but I still felt kind of bad for her and the news, even though she sounded amused. Our pal Todd emailed me that she got fired "for burning bacon in the company kitchen." Shit. I hope that's true.

Shit! That still sucks. That drops her on the attraction scale a few points. I've wisely been trying to avoid attractive crazy people because I've learned what a foolish endeavor it is. I need a life.

Avoid chainsaws.

Monday, September 06, 2004

calm our dazed heads and discombobled bodies

I've stretched out this adolescent thing for a long time now. Considering that I turned 30 in March, a long time... It can be super fun considering that by all observable measures I've got my shit together, but at times I question how truly directed I am.

On Friday we were allowed to cut out of work at 3:30 due to the holiday weekend. I left at 3pm because I had plans. My boss had a vacant "oh, OK" look on his face when I asked for the early out. Whatever dude, it's a fucking holiday weekend. Go loosen that startch white collar shirt, have a couple martinis and get that deviant head.

I was out because my friend Rick, a 31 year old trader, had scored a stack of $26 tickets to Great America. The park was closed for all CBOT employees, their families and their coke head friends for the evening on discount. I hadn't gone to Great America since I went with my high school girlfriend in 1993. That was a long time ago. I was eager to jump on a few rollercoasters.

Traffic sucked on the ride up. Consider friday afternoon commuter traffic plus holiday weekend gridlock, plus typical asshole Illinois drivers doing 45 mph down the shoulder, and you've got 90 minutes sitting in traffic in what should take 45 minutes.

Finally there, Great America rocked. Rick and I rode up with his high school friend Matt and Pete, a couple other 30 year old adolescents. This can be fun and kind of lame at the same time. Fun in that Matt and Pete insisted that we find beer after the second coaster in order to calm our dazed heads and discombobled bodies, and lame in that both fuckers were high fiving and talking like a pair of 7th grade stroke offs (and saying they didn't want to cockblock) after I talked to some 847 skank in line for "Batman"... whatever dude. Cancel the Maxim magazine subscription... it's definitely not going to help you attempt to understand the fairer sex. Clueless. Anyways, Great America is the shit.

Saturday I returned to Wisconsin to chill. I went over to my friend Bob's place. Bob was a fucking badass back in the day:

(1) he'd slept with 15 girls before any of us had slept with one
(2) he usually had two girlfriends at once, and he'd walk down the school hallway with one while the other would see him and freak out. The girl was never pissed at Bob... always at the other girl
(3) his mom used to leave for the weekend with her boyfriend, and give Bob the keys to the new Baretta and $150 in cash. We'd spend that money on dinner, weed and liquor. Everyone partied at Bob's place every weekend.
(4) he used to walk around with a Marlboro reds box full of joints and hand them out
(5) during the winter he'd skip school 4 days out of 5 to go skiing. he drove a red 1979 camero and used to fill the tank and drive off from the same truck stop everyday.

That was 1989 through 1996.

In 2004, Bob is married with three daughters and his first son on the way. I'm Godfather to the youngest daughter Hailey. Where Bob was for the most part unhappy back in the day (he lost a leg to a motorcycle accident, spent time under house arrest for being an arson suspect, and spent over 100 days in one stretch for a 3rd drunk driving charge), he is content, happy and at peace today.

It's excellent to be his friend now, and we each value the friendship and longevity of the friendship, especially considering that our day to day lives couldn't be more different. Visiting him and seeing his spread plus our conversations occasionally make me question my direction and state of affairs. What can I say? I've got little control over what's really going on, I can only steer it in a favorable direction. At the same time, I'm psyched because I'm close to getting a trackbike, debating a wicked octopus tattoo on my left shoulder and I'm waiting on scoring an insane bag of kind bud in the next couple of days.

In my mind all of this rocks.

Thursday, September 02, 2004

buying peace

I've often been fascinated by the speeches given by new millionaires at lottery press conferences. They always say the same thing: "I'm not going to quit my job. Maybe I'll invest it. I'll send my relatives to college... blah blah blah."

If I ever won I would look dead on into the camera and say:

"I am going to use this $180 million on cloning research and I will create a clone army of super warriors with special powers and karate moves to fight in Iraq"

Then I'll do it.

Wednesday, September 01, 2004

quick to take care of shit

grizzly... I feel like a fucking kodiak... so much piss and vinegar.

The men in my family don't seem to slow down. When my father was around during his 30's and 40's (when I was growing up), I remember him as being "quick to take care of shit." My fuckin dad's a real man, and I aspire to be as well. I think that's why I enjoy manual labor and sweating from work or pushing myself... offices are for pussies. I don't work with any real men.

The men in my family also die young. My grandfather and his brothers all kicked it by 65. My uncle keith is falling apart. Jokingly I asked my dad when he turned 56 this year how he was going to spend his last 5 years... I think he took it seriously. He also recently quit smoking after 40 years sucking poison. He told me a couple weeks ago about a difference in his lung capacity. I was happy for him.

Uncle Keith is fucking insane. He's the chief of police in a small town and runs the place like he was Clint Eastwood, like he thinks he's Clint Eastwood... but then again, he really is. I'm posting two Uncle Keith stories next...


Today I saw on my online bank statement that $87 was paid to a company called Prime Benefits. I did not authorize this and have no idea how they got my bank numbers. The bitch of it all is that i'm going to have to close and then re-open a new account. This shit pisses me off and freaks me out. It's this sort of reason why I only allow direct deposit from work and spend the 30 minutes writing out checks and mailing them. Fuckers.