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Sunday, May 30, 2004
Long-Weekend Extravaganza, Part the Second
Same place as yesterday, with the mostly blind Siamese in my lap. Except Mia is sleeping, and Michelle's here, too (trying to sleep).

The dinner party was a success, of sorts. It was somewhat of an Iron Chef competition, with Tin Chef White-Boy Chinese against Iron Chef Indian. I made two versions of one dish (Szechuan* Stir Fry with Chicken / Tofu), while Iron Chef Indian made four or five dishes.

Afterward, we had a sushi-making party, which was supposed to be the highlight (and was, I suppose), but I was afraid it'd go so badly that we'd all starve. It went really well, so we'll have to do that again soon.

The Kirin Lager and Tsing Tao have mostly worn off. I'm going to work on my poem now.

Yes, poem. I'm workin' it, kids.

* I was trying to look up the spelling of "Szechuan" in the dictionary I found in here, but it's from 1962 . . . a gift to Michelle's father on his 17th birthday (so says the note from his father inside the cover).

Saturday, May 29, 2004
Long-Weekend Safari, Part the First
I'm at my in-laws' house. Mia is crying in the next room, trying to avoid the nap she so desperately needs.

We're having a dinner party tonight, and Michelle's at home, getting the house cleaned up. I took my mother grocery shopping this morning, and now I'm feeding the in-laws' cats . . . one of which (the nearly blind one) is in my lap as I type this.

I'm gonna try and 'blog as much as possible this weekend . . . to make up for my relative "silence" for the past couple weeks. Also, Michelle found her digital camera, so maybe we'll have some pictures of a certain floppy-haired guy I know.

Thursday, May 27, 2004
At the Next Inquisition
Here’s my latest thought:

If / when there’s another terrorist attack on U.S. soil . . . at the subsequent hearings into the breakdown in policy that lead (indirectly) to the attack . . . is Bush really going to be able to say he did all he could to prevent it?

I thought not.

Seriously, I’m not blaming Bush for 9/11, but after 9/11, we wiped the slate clean for him. He had carte blanche for his War on Terror. First, he got the Taliban out of Kabul (even if they’re still hanging around in Afghanistan / Pakistan). And then he turned his attention to . . . Iraq.

Some people (wrongfully) blamed his father for not chasing Saddam out of Iraq during the First Gulf War. I think we have much more of a case now to ask why he didn’t chase Osama and his cronies into the mountains. All the resources we wasted in Iraq . . . couldn’t we have found him by now?

Oh, wait, we have to wait and “find” him until just before the election. Ooops. I forgot. How silly of me.


In other news, my boss and I were IM’ing, and he mentioned that several of his friends are ‘bloggers. He went on to mock the ‘blogging phenomenon a little bit. In keeping with my stealthy ways, I agreed with him. “Yeah, they’re attention-whores.”

I'm all about the wink-wink, hush-hush.

Tuesday, May 25, 2004
Just when you think you can’t love Deadwood any more, they finally give you a closer look at Woo, whose grasp of the English language only extends as far as “cocksucker.” Which, in Deadwood, is a lot.

I think Al is quickly becoming a favorite character. At first, I was thinking that he was just plain evil, but there’s nothing very black-and-white about that show. And my pick for “most intriguing” is shifting from Trixie to the “tit-licker.” Or Mr. Merrick . . . the “ambulator.”


I thought I had a whole flurry of things to put up here, but I’m still hip deep in busy-ness. I will give you this, though. To halfway appease Mrs. Dayment.

Here is me before my haircut, playing at a show a week and a half ago.

And here’s me now, as I might appear in an episode of South Park.

(idea seen earlier and brought back to mind visiting Jules)

* We were watching the Deadwood episode we'd taped on Sunday and, when Woo started spouting "COCK-SUCKA!" I told Michelle, "I'm TOTALLY gonna write a blog post and title it 'Cocksucker.'"

Monday, May 24, 2004
You’d Think I’d Know the Plane Was Going to Crash Before I Boarded . . . Each and Every Time
By popular demand, I bring you the cautionary tales of my youth. Hopefully you denizens of The Internet haven’t read too many of these (mine, anyway). So, without further adieu, the Top Five:

Number Five: It was the weekend after my 19th birthday, on which my father had asked my mother for a divorce. A few of my (older) McDonald’s coworkers “kidnapped” me for a night of drinking, to help me get my mind off the grand finale of my parents’ failed marriage. One of my kidnappers was the older swing manager who had propositioned me. (We’ll call her Christy; another one of my kidnappers was “dating” Christy.) We went to someone’s apartment and started drinking Hurricanes. Somehow, the reading of Trivial Pursuit playing cards became part of a drinking game. After two 32-ounce Hurricanes, I was lying on the floor, talking to a cat. I woke up the next morning curled up on a couch with “I (Heart) Christy” written on my arm in eyeliner. Someone dropped me off at my car in the McDonald’s parking lot . . . where I spent 10 or 15 minutes dry-heaving.

Number Four: On this particular night, we were drinking Goldschlagger. Out of tumblers. I was ringleader for the oral administration of the Purity Test (a 400-question version). After we finished that (or were too bored to continue), we went out to a bar. Now, up to this point, I’d only been drinking Goldschlagger, so I was pretty drunk but feeling great. I decided to have a beer (Killian’s, to be exact). After one sip of beer, I felt my stomach begin to gurgle. “I’m going to sit in the car.” Everyone came out eventually for the journey back to our starting point. Anyone who tried to talk to me was met with “Shoosh” or “Shoosh, please.” By the time we got back to the house, I was too nauseous to move. One of my friends was trying to make me feel better and get me into the house. He finally convinced me to try to get out of the car. On the count of three, I opened the car door. At that point, everything went into stop-motion, and I watched the ground getting closer and my vomit spilling onto it just before my face hit. The host’s dog came to lick vomit off my pants.

Number Three: There are several drinking stories that have been recounted here (in my various ‘blog incarnations). And several that have not. A few of those are interesting and/or disasterous enough to be tied for the third-worst ever. Like the time I tried to go beer-for-beer with our drummer before / during / after a show and ended up peeing in my carport (which was flooded from rain) and then throwing up the next morning. Or the time I drank too much Captain Morgan’s and Hawaiian Punch and almost passed out (twice) driving home. Or the first time I had rum and coke and declared, “Thith tastesth juth like apple juith!” What about the time I played Three Man and woke up in the early morning hours to go to the bathroom . . . in the corner of our bedroom? There was also a time where you might ask how you get from me standing in the hallway in my tightie whities, yelling, “I’LL GO DOWN ON ANYONE!” to me being subdued by one of my closest friends, who I’d sucker-punched in the face only seconds earlier (it’s not a straight line, by the way). And who can forget the time I washed down two ephedrine with a dozen or so shots of vodka, tried to pee in a closet in front of a couple lesbians, and was used for wrestling practice?

Number Two: A local radio station sponsored a Wednesday-night drink special (in 1995) at Fat Tuesday’s (when it was open). It was called the “X Drink” and, like most drinks at Fat Tuesdays, it was a daiquiri. They wouldn’t tell you what was in it, and you could only have one. So, of course, I had to try it. Besides, Michelle was driving, so what could go wrong? Well, a lot. First of all, the drink was black and most certainly had tequila in it. But I dutifully drank it all, and took my oft-used Fat Tuesday’s cooler-cup back to the car. Then we ventured onto another club where, feeling no ill affects of the X Drink, I ordered two 50-cent kamikazes. And followed those with two more. I blacked out while dancing within half an hour. When I came to, Michelle was driving me home. And I was vomiting out the door of the car. Upon arriving home, I crawled toward the front door of my mom’s duplex while Michelle assured my mother that I was okay.

Number One: It was sometime around my birthday . . . I forget which. There were four of us. We bought a 24-pack of Killian’s from Sam’s Club and a liter of Captain Morgan’s. We topped our purchase off with a variety of chasers. The four of us sat at a table and systematically passed the bottle around (chug, chaser, pass bottle) until it was all gone. Then we started a beer challenge. Mr. ADD and I were going to go beer-for-beer. I poured two beers into a 32-ounce cup and went to work. I passed out a little while later. My friend brought me back into the world by hosing me down in his front yard. (Apparently, I was covered in my own vomit, which I’d released to create a lake on the hardwood floor.) After hosing me off, he led me on a walk around the block so I could dry off . . . and dry out. After the first lap around the block, I fell to my hands and knees to vomit some more; he helped things along with a firm kick to my stomach. I slept on his couch. The next morning, a Mr. ADD and I met a group of our friends who were driving to the beach. So, I went to the beach wearing all black, with dried vomit stains on the legs of my pants.

Gulp, gulp. The End.

Thursday, May 20, 2004
Drinking and Match-Making
Okay, so I've been trying not to get some work done today and haven't had the inclination time to write anything extra-special for you. So, in the spirit of cooperation and interaction, please let me know whether you'd be more interested in hearing how Michelle and I met, or a recounting of my five most memorable drinking disasters. (And, I'm sorry, but Michelle and I didn't meet during one of those drinking disasters. No, that one doesn't even make the Top 10.)

Vote early, vote often. I'll do my damnedest to post the more-requested item tomorrow. When I'm gonna be really busy, y'know.

Wednesday, May 19, 2004
Red-Light Epiphanies*
So, I’d just left work (without posting) yesterday afternoon. I was sitting at a red light on my way to pick Mia up from daycare. And I had one of those revelation moments . . . where time seems to stop, and you become acutely attuned to your surroundings, your thoughts suddenly clear.

I was thinking about everyone’s antidepressant suggestions, as well as possible songs for Bob’s mix CD(s), when I realized how I’ve battled depression in the past: with poetry. And music.

I need to write. I need to write. First of all, it makes me feel better to channel my negative feelings into something. And secondly, I think one of the reasons I’ve been bummed is because I’ve stopped writing. Those of you who’ve been here (or know me in real life) have maybe seen a poem (or three), so you know we’re not talking about poetry of high literary value. God knows, when I read other people’s poems, I think, “Man, I suck. I should just stop.” I really want to turn that into, “Man, I suck. But I could be that good if I just worked at it.” (This isn’t like fiction, where I think I could write better than a lot of shit I read, but my attention span is only allowing me to string together short lyric poems and not 300-page tomes. Right now, anyway.)

As far as music goes, it’s the only thing I’ve got (that’s creative). And that’s stretching it. Luckily, I think of myself as a musician and not a great guitarist.

Thank you for propping me up, everyone. I’ll keep you apprised of my psychological (and creative) progress.

* Not to be confused with a red-light district, or with the Red Shoe Diaries.

Monday, May 17, 2004
I Don’t Like Taking Pills for My Ills, so I Won’t Take Anything for This, Either
How Does the Partridge Family Theme Song Go Again?
When you’re sick, you take something, right? To make you feel better? Well, I’m a big believer in the Law of Diminished Returns, so I try not to take anything unless I have to (like antibiotics) or unless I’m sure it’s going to work and I only need to take it once or twice (like Nyquil).

I hated being on Prilosec. Sure, it made my stomach not so hurt-y and kept me from my 3-a.m. toilet-bowl hugging rendezvous, but I didn’t like being dependent on a pill to make me better. Especially one I had to take every single day.

So, anyway, I think I may be going through a bout of depression*. I told Michelle last week that I thought I’d been depressed for a long while. With things being stressful at work and with our budget being, well, ours, I’ve been noticing it more. My usual outlets aren’t coming through the way they used to. Maybe it’s an early mid-life crisis. I’m not going to dwell on it, however. I’m working to make things better . . . or at least do something to make myself feel better. Perhaps this is part of what I meant when I mentioned becoming a "different person" (see post below). Apparently, my first step toward recovery is ripping off Estella for the upteenth time.

That becoming a "different person" reference was also, you guessed it, a hint at a new haircut. Well, it’s not really that different. I’ll have Michelle take a picture and post it because she’s better at that sort of thing. I had great plans for a before-and-after post, but you know how I am with follow-through.

* I’m not trolling for sympathy here, folks. Just keepin’ it real. (And no, Mr. ADD, I don’t have "sand in my vagina.")

Thursday, May 13, 2004
Know This
Here are five Truths . . . some of which were reached very recently:

-- When a Weezer CD starts with the one-two wallop of “Tired of Sex” and “Getchoo,” there’s really nowhere to go but down. But Pinkerton is still (likely) their best CD. Eat that, Rivers Cuomo.

-- I may have changed my name, but I’m still ambitionless. Seriously, my mind is racing with creative project ideas. The wheels are turning. But, sadly, the gerbil’s crashed out on his little gerbil couch with an AmberBock. And some pizza. From California Pizza Kitchen. Hmmm, jerk chicken pizza . . .

-- Following Colin Powell’s reported “You break it, you’ve bought it” comment, Iraq is Dubya’s baby. Every single thing that goes wrong in that country is his responsibility. Support for the troops, money for body armor, mourning dead soldiers, revenge for beheaded and/or burned civilian contractors . . . all moot points, because WE SHOULDN’T FUCKING BE THERE AT ALL. Here’s The Truth, G-dub: An overwhelming majority of Americans would certainly trade Saddam back to Iraq if we could recover the hundreds of dead soldiers and hundreds of billions of dollars wasted. WASTED!

-- Kristin Hersh is a great songwriter, in spite of her potty mouth. She’s really flourished outside of Throwing Muses, as has her half-sister (Tanya Donelly . . . okay, not quite so much with Tanya). The over-hyped eponymous “reunion” CD last year was somewhat underwhelming, so I won’t be rushing out to get the new 50-Foot Wave CD (Hersh’s new punky project . . . oft-compared to the recent Muses outing).

-- Sometime tomorrow, I’m gonna be a different person.

Wednesday, May 12, 2004
Just stopping by to update the 'blogroll (again). I added three new ones, updated the link for our semi-returned friend (Queen Styro), and added a link to The Plug. I also rearranged (somewhat arbitrarily, of course) the rest of you.

More tomorrow.

Tuesday, May 11, 2004
Stats That Shape a Weekend (Beach Edition!)
Number of Shrimp Eaten in One 24-Hour Period (Friday Evening through Saturday Evening): a Christ-load . . . at least more than you ate
Volleyball Games Played / Won: two / none
Number of Hours Spent Watching Three-Hour Survivor Finale (Despite Having Seen None of This Season): about 2.5

Ah, another trip to the beach. That annual co-worker enhanced / polluted weekend of fun ‘n sun. With the in-laws. Rather than the tried and untrue, blow-by-blow detailing of the weekend activities, I’ll go with the highlights:

-- We made it to Sandestin just in time for check-in. And because it was me handling that responsibility, we ended up on the second floor . . . with no view and a balcony that was merely a few feet from the wooden “public-access” walkway to the beach. My aversion to confrontation and tendency toward the path of least resistance crumbled under Michelle’s mounting dissatisfaction and steely, angry glares. After a drive back to the registration desk, we secured a seventh-floor room with a spectacular view . . . and a door to the master bathroom.

-- The weekend was something of a shrimp-o-thon. At Friday night’s Crab House dinner, Michelle and I split a shrimp appetizer, some crab dip, and a seafood platter . . . of which, I ate most of the shrimp. Saturday evening was the work-group dinner, for which the company provided shrimp boiled in spices and served cocktail-style. I ate a good many of these. I won’t even say “too many,” although such a thing is theoretically possible.

-- Sharing a two-bedroom condo with the in-laws was pretty okay. I like to think of my relationship with them as a series of trade-offs. This weekend, we had the benefit of live-in babysitters, but the price was having the living room television tuned to Fox News quite a bit. Still, it’s fun to take playful (yet passive-aggressive) jabs at my father-in-law and, at the same time, appear charming to my mother-in-law. It’s a tricky game that I’m playing . . . and usually I’m the only winner.

-- We took turns standing with Mia on the edge of the surf as the picturesque (yet smallish) waves crashed and broke over our feet. Sometimes, she would shriek with joy, while others, she would dissolve into half-panicked sobs. But she loved playing in (read: flinging) the sand.

-- As beautiful as the Gulf waters were, the surf was still relatively chilly . . . and too calm for body-surfing (so why bother?). We swam in the pool instead. Yeah, not very “beachy” of us.

-- Every year, there’s a big company volleyball to-do. For one reason or another, I’d missed out on the previous two years’ games. This year, I managed to time it perfectly so I wouldn’t be left out. While my showing wasn’t quite as not-unimpressive as three years earlier, I held my own, although my teams lost both times (15 to 11 and 15 to 13, I think).

-- It’s also become a tradition to have nightly jam sessions while at the beach. I usually only attend the second night and, for the past two years, I’ve been the designated bass player. I fumbled my way through numerous covers and originals (of a participating singer/songwriter) until things started to fall apart. Around the point we arrived at “Who’s Gonna Save Your Soul?” Yeah, the Jewel song.

-- We did take several pictures. Not sure how the Lomo shots are going to turn out, because it doesn’t sound like the shutter is working properly. And those won’t be developed for a little while anyway. If I can find a suitable picture of me playing bass, perhaps I’ll post it.*

* I couldn't. Someone at work took some during the jam. I had my hair pulled back in a ponytail. I look like a puffier and gayer (and drunker) version of myself. And I'm not comfortable putting that out there just now.

Monday, May 10, 2004
be careful what you wish for

your regularly scheduled blog host kinda dropped the ball on the beach missions. i, however, did what i could to make all a few of your suggestions happen.

i'm not saying i cheated or anything, but some of the following pictures may not be completely based in reality.

Thursday, May 06, 2004
Mission: Beach
As you may have read somewhere else, we will be going to the beach this weekend. Or The Beach (as Michelle refers to it). Here, specifically.

We’ll be taking along our beautiful daughter . . . and Michelle’s parents. It’s a work-related (not working) trip. There will be music, (moderate) drinking, and fun in the sun (not really for me, per se).

I was thinking about making this trip interactive . . . an idea that came to me when Caitlin IM’d me her Oreo mission from The Plug. We’re going to be taking a camera or three, so we can document any missions that we may be given.

So, what would you have us do / take pictures of?

Wednesday, May 05, 2004
Recipe for Disaster
To prepare myself for some working-at-home action, I went with this regimen:

1 McDonald’s double cheeseburger + 1 spicy McChicken sandwich + 3 chicken McNuggets (with BBQ sauce mixed with honey) + 2 AmberBocks + 4 oily peanut butter cookies (hours later) + 22 minutes of the Scrubs season finale (with some commercials mixed in)

I woke up feeling pretty bleh this morning.

But this made me feel better. Word to y'mutha!

(Link courtesy of Lux . . . and about 500 others, apparently.)

Monday, May 03, 2004
How They Make Us Me Watch
When it comes to questionable (okay, bad) television, I believe in monitoring rather than active cleanup.

Oh, God, too much work. Let me start over.

I’m weak, okay? I will sit and watch anything if I’m hooked in the first 10 or 15 seconds. Now, I’d seen the promos for NBC’s spectacular mini-series event, 10.5. Y’know, the Space Needle collapsing, the Earth cracking open, buildings on fire, the Golden Gate Bridge falling (along with several cars) into San Francisco Bay. But I knew better, right? I mean, made-for-T.V. movies are, like, the worst programming that the media moguls have to offer. Seriously, Sean Hannity interviewing Rush Limbaugh would be more entertaining.

Michelle was at band practice last night, and I put Mia to bed at 8 o’clock. I was already hooked on a Dateline thing about a guy with DID who assaulted his longtime therapist and blames it on one of his alters. Anyway, that was two hours of my life, but I was feeding Mia and eating and then doing stuff around the house during the commercial breaks. So, I figured I’d let the lack of momentum carry over to the 9 o’clock hour, which was the kickoff of 10.5.

What followed was one of the most incomprehensible, improbable, badly written, plot-hole-ridden, and generally foul piles of poop ever committed to film. Are you fucking kidding me? From the first sequence of Seattle being ravaged by an earthquake (following a brave cyclist through the city as the quake is happening, only to see him ride, from the base of the falling Space Needle, directly in the direction it’s falling), it only got worse. Really, I cannot believe the increasingly horrible depths that it could sink.

Who watches this shit? (Me, apparently.) But after the first hour, Michelle (back from practice) asked, “Why aren’t you watching Deadwood?” And I had no answer for that one. Certainly none that would make sense. So I switched over to HBO, and I instantly felt much better.