Itís akin to an old millennium clock or the Olsen twins legality countdown.
Comprised of a Tecate can, a digital watch, and some foil, some would call it an engineering marvel. I call it my Personal Sobriety Chronometer.
If picking at details is your game, I'll admit that it's not exactly real. Hell, I havenít even started designing it on CAD yet. But if I ever did go to the trouble, the ingredients would be at least similar to those given, plus or minus an actual timekeeping device. I might end up having to imagine the need for a fake ID slowly ticking away, but hey, Iíll drink to that. Iíve still got some power of visualization left up there.
Regardless, the zero mark of my beer deficiency countdown is two solid months away, when John the Roommate becomes the first guy in our bona-fide college apartment to turn 21. Twenty-one!! Magically, the cause for celebration will be the means for it.
It's going to be quite a milestone for me, and this isn't even my own birthday I'm talking about. Reaching drinking age myself won't be nearly as significant as this, mostly because I'll have more pressing concerns such as finding a liver donor or two.
A warning - never let me hold your driverís license. I sometimes carry extra ďdonorĒ stickers around.
Because I want a primary liver, plus a backup. In the industry, that's known as a "double shot."
Until then, we've got oodles of midterms and Sarsaparilla.
Allow me to translate one of my work-related emails for the lay-folk:
You people are so shockingly dim that I feel compelled to help you out by starting this message with a reminder of what time of day it is. You're welcome.
I understand from our client that an email having to do with scheduling setup and training for [software product we're supposed to interface with] was sent out from [designer of software] to everyone involved with the current install.
You simpering orangutans -- I had to find out from our client, who by rights should have been told about it by ME, not the other way around.
I didn't receive the email.
By this, I can only conclude that either a) you were too lazy to read the email at all or b) too self-absorbed to realize that the project manager for the client in question wasn't on the "To:" line and should have been.
In the future, if an email is sent out that has to do with a client I'm responsible for as a project manager and it doesn't include me in the recipient list, please forward it along to me so I have a better idea as to what's going on.
In the future, do something vaguely resembling your job. Better yet, pretend you're even awake. For chrissake, you even told the client that you hadn't bothered to read the email.
(Of course, I didn't know I wasn't getting the emails until someone at the site asked about them -- I can certainly cover it up, but it would have been better if I had known what they were talking about).
If you leave me hanging out to dry like that again, I will stress-test your well-padded ass with a 20 lb. sledgehammer and a pack of Scotts lawn fertilizer spikes.
Related to that: if we're going to market this new software package as a good fit to go along with [our software], I would like to attend training on it before I have to support it at the site.
I can look like an idiot all by myself, thanks ever so much. With a little forewarning, I can actually avoid that experience nine times out of ten.
We sold the client on using [this software] with [our software], but the only employee from our office at their office this week knows nothing about [this software] or about what will and won't work once the interface is in. It doesn't look good and blows customer confidence.
I realize that the myopic, narcissistic nature of the human DNA strands that gives rise to salesmen means that I'll never really get this point across, but you can't simply sell whatever package has a pretty website and send it out the door. These people sign a minimum one-year service and training agreement, and I sit less than twenty feet from you. If you don't have any common sense, at least exercise your survival instinct.
I don't mind being put on the spot for project management issues,
I am a goddamn liar, but I'm trying to be reasonable.
but I need to be in the loop on organizational emails and familiar with the third-party software I'm required to support.
It would take several acts of several gods to keep me in this company any longer than absolutely necessary. You are dead to me.
There are bits of writing popping up all over this miracle of a website, but I have a petty and stubborn need to distance myself from that whole scene. I suppose itís only a technicality.
My fifth grade teacher had enough nerve to declare straight to my face that when I grew up, I wasn't rocketing to Mars. Egad no, I was going to accomplish something respectable with my life. "You're going to be a WRITER," she spat.
So to spite her for that blasphemy centuries ago, I'm going to do the Bad Samaritan deal under my usual pseudonym "goose." Aside from holding the undisputed title of sexiest animal in the kingdom, geese are remarkably ill equipped for graceful operation of a keyboard. No fingers and a big beak - perfect. That'll show the elementary infidel.
Still, sometimes I miss her gold star stickers. In fact, I see no reason why the stars or some sort of hand-stamp system shouldn't be continued throughout the university level. Graduating summa cum laude? Congratulations, that's three stickers on your forehead.
Sigh. Between school and Samaritanism, I foresee that much healthy sleep will be lost and a challenge to recover. Thatís right, sleep for me will be like Russian submarines.
As it stands now, Iím stricken with a form of narcolepsy. I involuntarily stumble into short term comas due to the most exciting of stimuli, like two-hour engineering lectures, or when I go to bed at night. It's one of the more common manifestations of narcolepsy, I'm told.
I canít wait until I get my wisdom teeth the hell out next month, so theyíll gas me.
Heya. Just joined Bad Sam. Thought I'd say hi. I don't have much to say at the moment since it's still snowing outside and I've got a long drive tomorrow, but I thought I should wave my hand in the air and make a few things clear.
Point the First-and-Only: I'm a selfish bastard, just like the title says. I love BadSam and I hope that whatever I contribute here helps MG achieve whatever digital godhood is forthcoming but I'm not doing it for him -- it's all about me finding a place to bitch even more vehemently about my job, my souless jackass coworkers, my septegenarian bosses, and whatever else tickles my fancy.
Yes, I have a website. Generally, I write whatever I feel like writing.
But not always. You probably have a website too, so you know why.
For instance, if I'm talking about my sister-in-law whose son has been living with us for three years (at his request), the best I can normally do for You-the-Reader is state the facts and let you draw your own conclusions.
But it's so much faster for me to just tell you "she ruined the first nine years of her kid's life, and he's going to spend the next nine-plus years overcoming that, and I don't know if I can help him half the time, even though I keep trying."
I need that. In between the polite-but-personal blogging and lawn-care anecdotes and NaNoWriMo and the job and the family, I need me some BadSam -- always have. Just like you.
I don't have much to say right at the moment.
I imagine that will change.
I'll see you then.
Being a cynic in a fast food culture, one is routinely proven a hypocrite, usually while in the drive-thru. It is hard to be critical AND enjoy something at the same time. It can be done, however, using Olympian mental gymnastics.
In the Zen philosophy, there are three stages of existence and I, as a man, could be in any of those stages while on the road to Nirvana (who I saw once in Chicago; they rocked). The path is difficult to explain, but thankfully with Zen, simple, mind-blowing examples work better than lengthy discourse.
The first stage is living naturally, like an animal but not quite that insulting. The natural man comes home from a hard day at work and says, ďIím hungry. Whatís for dinner?Ē
The second stage is enlightenment. The enlightened man comes home from a hard day at work and says, ďWhy am I hungry?Ē
Now most people think enlightenment is the goal of spiritual development, but that is where they get hung up. You see them harping about meat and they pretend they understand the hardships of developing nations because they wear Birkenstocks, eat tofu and have anxiety attacks. Enlightenment can be confused with false enlightenment or premature enlightenment when movement screeches to a halt before ...
The third stage. Self-realization. This is the beauty part. The self-realized individual comes home from a hard day at work and says, ďWhatís for dinner?Ē
Sublime isnít it? You may ask yourself, isnít that a whole lot of work just to end up where you started? Yes and no. Think of it as a spiral stair case. You may be going around in circles, but if you do it right, you end up on a higher plane of existence ... or at least you manage to get out of the basement.
This is all very Eastern, but I am feeling kind of effete today so bear with me. Similarly, in Western terms, Socrates said, ďThe unexamined life is not worth living to a human.Ē We drop the ďto a humanĒ part all the time and that is unfortunate. Sometimes, the greatest meaning in a sentence is not in the subject or the verb, itís in the prepositional phrases. Just ask the NRA.
What I believe Socrates meant was that our ability to self-examine is what makes us human. Animals can suffer and they can know they suffer and react, but they donít know they know it, you know? At least we assume animals donít know that they know what we know or lack that extra level of awareness known as sentience.
For example, if a man and a coyote are both caught in a trap, the coyote will chew its own leg off to escape. Thatís hard-core, but a man will lie in wait for the person who set the trap. Whether he does it to avoid cutting his own leg off or to get revenge on the guy who set the trap in the first place takes an awareness animals do not exhibit.
As human beings, we begin life as little more than animals. We have needs and we want them filled. We grow and sometimes we reach beyond that level. We can sacrifice even our lives for a greater cause.
Sometimes we can get confused and believe our willingness to sacrifice is evidence of our advancement. We can have goals beyond instant gratification, but sometimes a little gratification isnít so bad either. What is really important is that we can think beyond the straight line from A to B sometimes.
This applies to all aspects of life. Consumerism, what we buy, what we need and what we want. Local, state, national and world politics. Race, gender, ethnicity. Class struggle, who has what and how did they get it? Movies, books, music, sports, food. What do we like and why?
Asking why is essential if we want to do more than roll around the primordial muck hitting each other with our chewed off limbs. Answers are in short supply and we may not have been put on this earth ďto get it,Ē but that doesnít mean we shouldnít keep asking the questions.
If my life were a romantic comedy, this would be the part of the movie right after everything has gone to hell, and the protagonist has started rebuilding his life. He may not have the girl/job/hair cut of his dreams, but he is getting by.
There would be a montage signifying the passage of time. It would include all sorts of snippets of supposedly ďEvery-dayĒ time happenings, grocery shopping with the new girlfriend, riding the subway, using the photocopier at work, dinner with family/friends. It is to show that he is going on with his life, but there are the subtle underpinnings of something being not quite right.
We all know that the hero will find the love of his life/the perfect job/a cute puppy; this is a movie after all. But the montage makes it seem as if that dream is impossible, and that things are, while not perfect, maybe just good enough that the hero should stop even trying for it.
If this really were a movie, things would start wrapping up around at 100 the minute mark. But this is life; 20 minutes have passed just since I sat down to write this. Nothing is any closer to a resolution, certainly not a Hollywood ending. The montage continues, for now.
Iíve got nothing to say today, so it occurred to me that maybe itís time to add a little new blood into the mix here.
Besides for Linz, who I adore with all my heart, I havenít added a soul since the whole Next Generation thing way back in February. We all know how that turned out. Not that I donít love those guys, but only ten posts in the last 4 months? Thatís even worse than the old time Samaritans (who arenít exactly setting the world on fire here either).
I put out a call for new authors a couple months ago, but I was going through sort of a rough period in my life. The hourly crying jags really prevented me following up on the people who showed interest in the manner required (i.e. simply returning any of their emails).
But, now life is going a little bit better (crying jags only once a day), and I think Iím in a much better mental state to put out a call for new authors and actually following up on it. So, yeah, if you are interested in contributing to Bad Samaritan, drop me a line with a little info about you, a URL if youíve got one, and 30 kilos on uncut heroin.
Iím having the kind of week where everything that can go wrong, has. Where every emotion is inappropriate, where every Yes should have been a No, and every Left should have been a Right? Ever have a week like that?
This has been the kind of week where, if I were to play the lottery, Iíd match every numberÖ of last weekís winner.
This is the kind of week where you pick Jarrod Washburn for you fantasy baseball team, and the Angels get rocked for 16 runs.
This is the kind of week where you finally get around to balancing your checkbook and credit card accounts, after 14 months of ignoring even the concept of money, and wishing youíd went on ignoring for just a bit longer.
The kind of week where you have to cut a date short to go help your mom pack for a big move, but after leaving your date and on your way to your momís house, you get a call saying, ďOh, you donít have to come over and help tonight, there isnít that much to do. Just come over tomorrow.Ē
This is the kind of week where you get in a fight with your girlfriend about having to leave a date early, and it turns out you didnít have to leave early after all. The fight is a major contributing factor to you breaking up.
This is the kind of week where, when you do get to your momís house the next night, you see that not only should you have been over to help pack the night before, but should have been over to help every night for the last two weeks.
This is the kind of week where, the love of your life, whoís repeatedly broken your heart, professes she is still in love with you. And then decides to move away.
How is your week going?
You may have noticed that it's been awhile since I've visited these parts. Or, more likely, you've been so wrapped up in The Bachelor that you've barely bothered to notice that your girlfriend left AND took your dog. Either way, I feel for you. Life has a way of getting away from us, no??
This afternoon, I'm trapped inside by a cold October rain that is coming down in sheets. I've got a foot of standing water in my back yard, and about six inches in my front yard. I'm beginning to wonder if I've got enough wood to build that Ark. Nah, that would entail way too much work. Of course, the positive thing to come out of this is that I've got a hell of an excuse for not mowing the lawn, eh??
Lacking other options for safe and legal entertainment, I'm left to amuse myself with my own thoughts. OK, I'm not sure I'd call it entertainment, but I'm discovering that my normally Liberal sensibilities aren't always what they've seemed to be. I'll spare you the details, but you can check here or here if you really must know more. Suffice it to say that, if you ever commit a particularly brutal or heinous crime, you do NOT want to end up in my courtroom.
OK, that's all for now. I've overstayed my welcome.... Enjoy Boz Scaggs!!
Iíve spent every night this week helping my mom, more time than Iíve spent with her years. Itís all because, after spending her entire life in New York City, and the last 14 years in the same house, she is leaving the city.
I donít want to even get into that whole thing, at least now, but some there has been some good that has come from this.
One, Iím getting a whole bunch of free furniture and kitchen appliances. Yeah!
Two, Iím getting to look through all the old junk that I left there when I left for college. All my old toys, notebooks of bad poetry, pictures of Paula Abdul, and more! Iím finally reclaiming the acoustic guitar Iíd never learned to play well, all my old baseball cards and comic books, and a bunch of hopelessly out of style clothing.
Nothing to do with that, exactly, but last night my mom handed me this letter sheíd found when cleaning out my grandmotherís apartment after she died earlier this year. It was really amazing all the things my grandmother had kept, which I donít think any of us thought she was sentimental enough to have held onto. Decades old birthday cards, all the little chachkas her grand children had given her, no matter how horrendously ugly. The letter was one Iíd written to my grandmother from summer camp, when I was just nine years old.
I think itís interesting and cute, and I hope you will too. Itís also very relevant in regards to the grammar discussion going on in the comments right now. I think itís pretty obvious Iíve always had problems; Iím not sure why, even at nine years old, I thought ďwroteĒ had an ďhĒ (though I did realize I was wrong, even then).
I also still have trouble spelling raccoon (thank god for spell check).
At any rate, take a look.
There is one thing that would make my life complete, that I want more than anything in the world. Do you want to know what it is? I want (nay, need) a station wagon brown hooded sweatshirt with a zipper and fuzzy lining.
I've looked all over, for years now, and I haven't found one. They are either brown but not zippered, zippered but not fuzzy, or fuzzy but not brown. I'm literally yearning for this sweatshirt.
Do you know where to find one? Do you have one to send to me? What simple thing would make your life complete?
I love KD, but man do I have to disagree with her. She wrote:
those who would sacrifice freedom for security, deserve neither
Actually, you are completely wrong about this. The Democracy is premised on the idea of the social contract; we give up certain rights in order to preserve certain others. This basic principle comes from The Social Contract, by Jean-Jacques Rousseau.
The Social Contract is the almost single handed inspiration of Thomas Jefferson, et al., in writing the Declaration of Independence and eventually the Constitution and Bill of Rights. Though it was John Locke, in The Second Treatise of Civil Government, who really developed the concept most fully, Rousseau was a contemporary of Jeffersonís, and discussed it entirely more eloquently. He wrote:
Each man, in giving himself to all, gives himself to nobody; and as there is no associate over whom he does not acquire the same right as he yields others over himself, he gains an equivalent for everything he loses, and an increase of force for the preservation of what he has.
In other words, being a member of a society requires you giving up certain things. For example, in order to be protected from people walking around and hitting us with 2x4s with rusted nails in them, we agree not to bilk old people of their money and pills. Generally speaking, what we get in return (health care, protection, and Robert Mapplethorpeís photographs) makes up for the things we lose (not being allowed to run over people who piss you off, touch children on their naughty bits).
But, as far as things go, Americans have it good. If you are a woman living in Saudi Arabia, it means you give up the right toÖ well, you give up all your rights really. But if you live in the United StatesÖ what rights do we exactly give up again?
Had a very wonderful time last night with some blog buddies.
First, there was dinner with Rannieand Chris at Lucky Chengís. If you donít know Luckyís (and why should you, really?), it's a restaurant staffed entirely by drag queens. And Iím not talking about guys dressed up as normal waitress kind of drag, but ďIím about ready to get on stage to sing a Cher medley, but can I take your order now?Ē kind of drag.
Anyway, it was an interesting place, a sort of New York institution, and Iíd never been before. The food was okay, and some of the waitresses were cute enough. Unfortunately, I was sitting facing the wall and didnít get to see most of the action, which apparently included one of the waitress' boobs continuously popping out of her dress. Ah well, if youíve seen one chemically induced man-boob, youíve seen them all.
Later, we headed to Delft a cute bar named after a city in the Netherlands, which one only choose because Sheckyís claimed that ďif youíre with a large group of friends, this is the place to come to and make yours for a night.Ē We were going to have a relatively large group with us, and if I couldnít make someone mine for the night, at least Iíd be able to make some place mine for the night.
I was sort of worried, what with it being Thursday night, that the place would be packed and loud and just the sort of annoying NYC bar that makes me hate going to bars in NYC. We got there and the place was empty.
As much as I hate a crowded bar, an empty bar practically makes me pee my pants. Iím much quicker to walk out of a bar or restaurant thatís near empty than one thatís packed cheek to cheek. Even if I end up despising what is going on, at least something is going on.
But, so, this was the place we choose, and except for the fact we were the only people in the place, it was pretty chill. As the night wore on, and more people showed up (and as I downed more gin), it got much more chill. Besides for me, Rannie, and Chris, Andy, Mark, Baz and Choire showed up. I also got to meet Bryan, Jayme, Jen, and Andrew. It was a good time. The end.
Earlier this week, police in Maryland offered several tips for protection against sniper-style shootings. Always looking for ways to help, Bad Samaritan has compiled a revised list of tips for your protection:
1. While outside, try to keep moving. A moving target is more difficult to hit than one that is standing still. The best way to keep yourself in constant motion is to drink plenty of coffee and not allow yourself to pee. Weíve tried it, it works.
2. If you must remain in one place in an area where you feel vulnerable, select the darkest part of the area to sit or stand in. If there are no darkened areas, you may be required to shoot out a few lampposts, this is exactly the reason why God wrote the Second Amendment.
3. When moving outside, walk briskly in a zigzag pattern. Consume two shots of Tequila for every 15 minutes you plan to be outside, this will guarantee a certain amount of random zigzagging, and will confuse any would-be snipers. If you will be driving, consume only one shot of Tequila for every 15 minutes you plan to be outside.
4. To guarantee absolute safety when you must be outside, crawl on your stomach. Bring several changes of shirt and pants with you wherever you go. Buy a case of Shout stain remover.
5. If you must stand outside, try to keep some type of protective cover between yourself and any open areas where a sniper might be located. For example, if you are fueling your car, stand between your vehicle and the gas pump and bend your knees to lower your profile. If all else fails, stand behind a fat person.
6. If you are fired on in an open area, drop to the ground and roll away from where you were standing. Look for the closest protective cover and run toward it in short, zigzag dashes. If you find yourself frozen and unable to move, try urinating yourself Ė the sunsí glare off the resulting puddle will confuse any would-be sniper.
7. Be constantly aware of your surroundings while outside. Note any suspicious vehicles or activities, especially people with dark skin or strange accents. Move away from them and report them to the police, or head back to the trailer park and get your unemployed boyfriend and his three brothers to beat that person with tire irons and aluminum baseball bats. They may end up being just really tan or from Minnesota, but better safe than sorry.
8. Remember that a sniper with the right equipment can shoot accurately from about 500 yards away, the equivalent of five football fields. If you absolutely must be around strangers, stand no closer than 500 yards from anyone. This may require a small boat and a large body of water.
9. Avoid clothing from Target. If you must wear something bought from a discount retailer, stick to K-Mart or Wal-Mart. Though their clothes are of poorer quality, better to be unfashionable than dead.
10. If you see a cream-colored van or a White SUV moving at slow speeds, it may be the Beltway Sniper or O.J. Simpson. In either case, get away as quickly as possible.
If youíve any more helpful hints for avoiding snipers, please add to the list.
I had a stange dream last night that has me really scratching my head trying to understand what it is all about. It makes me rethink all my beliefs about the world.
The only bit I really remember includes me sitting in bed, which, since I was in bed, sort of blurs the boundry between reality and fantasy. The dream was a constant stream of me sticking various things in my ear and seeing what would happen. The list of some of the things I'd stuck in my ear:
1. A pen, purple, stolen from work
2. A pair of scissors
3. My cell phone's anteana
4. My finger
5. A baby carrot
What could that possibly mean?
1. Friday: Decide to leave work early so you can get home and rest. Instead, leave work early and walk three miles in a big circle around lower Manhattan for two hours in the rain.
2. Saturday: Lay in bed all weekend, mind working so foggily that you donít recognize the relationship to being cold, having the windows open, and not wearing a shirt.
3. Sunday: Go to a concert that starts at 10 p.m. Stay until you are sure there wonít be a second encore, just short of midnight. Get in fight with girlfriend while standing outside Bowery Ballroom, in rain. Finally get home, so exhausted you fall asleep in your smoke drenched clothes (including coat). Wake up four hours later and go to work.
4. Monday: Actually do work at work.
5. Tuesday: Actually do work at work again, not leaving until 7. Get home and manage, despite insomnia, to fall asleep almost instantly (well, right after Buffy). Get call from Rannie at 11:30 p.m., letting you know he made it safely across the Canadian border. Donít fall asleep again until after 2 a.m.
6. Wednesday: Forget to eat breakfast or lunch, instead eat exactly and approximately 37 mini Hersheyís Dark candy bars.
7. Arrange late night events every day for the next week and a half. Plan not to sleep any time soon.
I think I want to become a warblogger. It seems like that is what all the cool kids are doing, and the surest way of getting yourself written about in Wired.
Forget about quality original content, just bitch about that darn Ashcroft or those damn Arabs for long enough and people are bound to flock to your site. It seems an easy road to super stardom. Or at least web superstardom.
But, as easy as it seems, I think Iíve got one major stumbling block to the whole warblogging thing; I really couldnít care less about politics. Iím a registered Republican, much to most peopleís surprise, but when it comes down to it Iím pretty middle of the road. I choose Republican over Democrat less because of agreement with GOP ideals than disagreement with the kinds of people who make up the leftist majority; Iím a Republican solely because most Democrats annoy me.
Sure, I could belong to one of the third parties, but Iíd like to actually be on the winning team, at least occasionally. With one of the big two parties I get to win at least 50% of the time. Besides, I donít really care about politics or issues, remember, why would I join the Right to Life or Green or parties? To hang out at conventions with those hot Nader-groupies?
If anyoneís ever gotten into a political debate with me, they might find it strange to say I donít care about politics since I get as heated about a topic as someone with actual opinions. Iíll argue passionately about any topic, but, within a matter of minutes I can switch from contending that Palestinians have every right to be pissed off at Israel, to maintain that Israeli military action is a perfectly justified response to Palestinian attacks. It all depends on who Iím talking to and where their passions lie.
Yes, Iím that guy.
It really infuriates people who try to have discussions with me since Iíll always take the opposing side, no matter what that side might be. Child porn? All for it. Nationalizing all corporations? Preach on comrade. Ethnic cleansing? Count me in. Cleaning up the environment? Iím so there, dude.
Now, despite what you might think, it isnít just to be obstinate; I can honestly see both sides of the issue. Okay, some of it might have to do with some passive aggressive thing about always having to win, no matter what. I was never very good at sports, but I always excelled mentally. If I couldnít beat someone out there on the field (I was a consummate little league left fielder) I could certainly beat them into intellectual submission off the field. I was the Mike Tyson of logical pummelingís.
Unfortunately, there are a lot of smarter out there in blogland, and it isnít all that fun to argue with someone if you canít see the flecks of spittle foaming around their mouth as they try to make their point with someone who will never see their point. I guess Iíll just stick to talking about sex and mass murderers and robot monkeys.
Youíve begged and youíve pleaded, so Iím finally giving it to you like the naughty bitch you are; the latest installment of Horrorscopes: Astrology for the criminally Insane.
Libra (Sept. 23rd-Oct. 23rd)
The cops are closing in on you. Maybe that is them at the door now? Get out of the house. Run. RUN! Oh, wait; it's just the pizza guy.
Scorpio (Oct. 24th-Nov. 22nd)
You may have loved her since E.T., but the stars regret to inform you that when they make a horror movie of your life Drew Barrymore will only show up for the first 97 seconds.
Sagittarius (Nov. 23rd-Dec. 21st)
Sagittarius, though you don't have any recollection of it at all, you were the caretaker here. The stars recognize ya. They saw your picture in the newspapers. You, uh, chopped your wife and daughters up into little bits. And then you blew your brains out.
Capricorn (Dec. 22nd-Jan. 20th)
No beer and no TV make Capricorn go crazy. But if you can only afford one, make sure to pay your cable bill since only a complete nut job would give up the Sopranos.
Aquarius (Jan. 21st-Feb. 18th)
After more than two decades in jail DNA evidence will finally prove you didn't kill those two prostitutes back in '79. Unfortunately, it will prove you killed those three nuns back in '78
Pisces (Feb. 19th-Mar. 20th)
Though there is nothing illegal about it, sending people Powder in the mail is just sick. That movie sucked.
Aries (Mar. 21st-Apr. 20th)
Being a copy cat killer doesn't actually require you to poop in a box.
Taurus (Apr. 21st-May 20th)
The stars understand that your Aunt Lana bequeathed you a huge inheritance in your will, but explain to us again why you bombed the '96 Summer Olympics?
Gemini (May 21st-June 21st)
You will make a video of yourself ranting and raving about the "Great Devil" hoping to get put on the FBI's most wanted list and become a hero to your people. Instead, your video will become the basis for a parody website and get passed around the world through interoffice emails.
Cancer (June 22nd-July 22nd)
The stars still no what you did last summer.
Leo (July 23rd-Aug. 22nd)
The stars can understand getting a little stressed out about finally losing your NES after spending 11 hours a day, every day, for the last 17 years playing Duck Hunt in your parent's basement. But the stars would like to point out, Leo, that those targets in Maryland and Virginia were not ducks.
Virgo (Aug. 23rd-Sept. 22nd)
Alex Trabek isn't personally asking you question. Alex Trabek is personally giving you answers, you have to supply your own questions.
The consistently unfunny Mark Fiore has a new animation up at his site that is also making its syndicated way around the web (notably, on the front page of the Village Voice's site this week).
The cartoon posits that the only way to really hit Saddam Hussein where it'd really hurt him is to go back in time and not do all the things the U.S. government supposedly did for him back when we and Iraq were all palsy-palsy, or at least had a common enemy in the Iran/Soviet Union alliance.
And, if time travel were possible, I'd be all for that idea. Unfortunately, the laws of physics don't quite support moving through the continuum in any way but forward and at any pace that the universe isn't deciding.
Maybe I'm taking a cartoon entirely too seriously, and I'm sure there is a bit of that going on (I still weep uncontrollably whenever I watch the Fox and the Hound), but I've seen this type of rhetoric in more academic circles as well. It is a big argument against military involvements in various nations that, for whatever reason and through whatever means, the U.S. had been responsible for "creating" the terrorist or dictator that came around to bite us in the ass later.
And you know what? I'm willing to give you that.
Back in the 1980s the U.S. supported the Afghanis against the Soviet Union, and some of those we helped later went on to form the Taliban and Al-Qaeda of recent years. No lo contendo. Fifty years ago the CIA had a hand in a coup in Cuba that resulted in putting Fidel Castro in office. I agree we did that, and plenty more.
But, now, see here is the thing, if we are responsible for creating those guys, and I make no argument that we aren't, in at least some part, responsible, then aren't we then also responsible for correcting our mistakes? If Iraq really had absolutely nothing to do with us, the peace-mongers would have a perfectly valid case for not going into Iraq. But our hands are already in the cookie jar, have been for thirty years, so we might as well grab a cookie while we are there.
If Saddam is a product of American intervention, we have a moral imperative to go in there and stop him now. This isn't about oil, it isn't about revenge, and it isn't about an American president subverting the Constitution. No, this is about putting things back the way they should have been before we put our nosy little faces in business they didn't belong.
This is about correcting mistakes and righting wrongs. Except for the time travel (which is impossible, see above) and Scott Bakula (who is horrible, see Enterprise), it's just like Quantum Leap.
In honour of Rannie's New York Visit, I'm helping him throw a little get together Next Thursday night. To honour his visit I'm also spelling "honour" with a "u", pretending I enjoy hockey (both since he is from Canada), and wearing an eyepatch (just because it's fun).
Thursday October 17th @ 8pm
An evening of drinks and mingling with New York City Bloggers.
14 Ave. B (Houston & 2nd Sts.)
Delft is named after either a city in the Netherlands (aka Holland), or a style of glazed earthenware, usually blue and white. That has nothing to do with anything.
To get yourself invited, go leave him a message. It is going to be a real fun time, and I guarantee you I'm going home with someone at the bar that night.
I've haven't gotten any new and interesting catalogues recently. That means I've actually had to do work, rather than scan through catalogs for funny pictures and stuff I'd buy if I could spend the company's money on things I got to take home with me and keep and love forever.
But 'lo, a great one came in the mail today. It comes from a company that dub themselves "shipping supply experts." I'm sure they are.
An anonymous Googler came to the site asking:
how to end relationship with commitment phobe
If you are dating a commitment phobe, the surest way to get them out the door is to profess your undying love. Ask them to move in. Invite them to meet your parents. That commitment phobe will be gone so quick they'll leave your head spinning like a bobble-head doll on an out of control carousel. Actually, that technique would work on pretty much any guy.
The great thing about this plan is that your ex-significant other will think they were the one who did the breaking up, even though youíll know it was all your idea. That way, if you decide to get back together, even if just for pity sex, they'll go out of their way to make it up to you for being such a jerk and leaving in the first place. They'll feel so guilty, nothing will be out of the question, expensive gifts, doing the dishes, back door loving; it'll all be game.
At first glance, this seems a given. You are dating a commitment phobe; they'll be the one doing the breaking up with you. The real question should be how to hold on to a commitment phobe. And while the answer to this question is just as obvious, the execution of the solution gets a little.
The only way to hold on to a commitment phobe is blackmail: physical or emotional.
Physical blackmail is easy; be the best fuck your partner has ever had. Adding to that a constant barrage of verbal abuse will help you get your claws in deeper. Criticize their appearance, their choice of career, their sexual prowess, their body odor and fashion sense.
Think of all the things you can do to belittle them, and then do it. The idea is to make them think they are worthless; that if they were to leave you no one else would ever love them.
The one-two punch offered by using your body to show them the best sex they've ever had and using your mind to convince them that if they leave you, theyíll never have sex again will ensure that they will be too shattered to ever leave your comforting bosom.
Emotional blackmail is a little trickier, and youíll have to be a lot more creative. The idea behind emotional blackmail is to pretend something is wrong with you so as to make your significant other think they are a terrible cad if they were to leave you.
If you are a woman, pretend you are pregnant, or, better still, since thatíll only work a couple weeks (unless you also fake a spontaneous miscarriage), get pregnant by another guy and make your man think its his kid. If you are a fella, fake a bad accident, amnesia. If you are really desperate, fake a coma; only a completely soulless individual would leave a guy in a coma.
Be creative. If you canít think up something on your own just watch a lot of soap operas for inspiration. Soap operas are a veritable fount of information regarding emotional blackmail. Iíve seen countless variations of the theme in my years of daytime and primetime viewing. Those writers obviously have never gotten dumped, or have learned from their mistakes.
If youíd like to learn from my mistakes write for some Bad Advice. Until next time, keep your feet on the ground and your head up her skirt.
Thought I disappeared, didnít you?
Well, in a sense, I did.
I was away this weekend for a wedding, donít worry ladies, it wasnít my own.
I am the oldest child in this generation of my extended family of cousins and siblings. Iíve always been the one to do everything, good and bad, first. This weekend when of my younger cousins got married. And while I did feel more that just a tiny twinge of jealousy, I couldnít help but be happy for her, since she and her new hubby are just so right for each other.
I took off work Friday and drove the 8 hours from New York to Charlottesville, Virginia, where theyíd be getting married. The wedding took place at this beautiful little old chapel on the campus of the University of Virginia, where the couple met. All in all, this was the most beautiful and fun wedding Iíd ever been to.
Besides just the irrational ďme firstĒ jealousy, there is a little deeper seeded envy springing from wanting to be the one getting married. Iíd always thought Iíd be hitched by now, and it is just a little sad that Iím not.
I maybe drank a little too much, and ended up making a couple drunken calls to girls, the whole ďI was just at this wedding and thinking of you,Ē call. Luckily, my cell phone battery died before I went through the full list of people I could imagine being happily married too.
While I was away, someone at my hosting company decided this site sponsored child pornography and banned my site. I donít want to get into it all because itíll probably just get me into more trouble, but I managed to convince that Iím an okay person, while writing long emails from the road on cell phone.
So, yeah, that is why I wasnít around the last couple days, and why the site was down for a couple days while I wasnít around. Iím back now, and tired, but ready to hit it.
In my nightly quest to get to bed early I invariably fail.
The Internet, a good book, TV, these are sleepís foes.
Tonight I got sucked into the later of those narcoleptic nemeses because Edward Norton was on David Letterman.
Iíve loved Norton (as an actor) since American History X. He seems like a nice enough person, and his commentary on the Fight Club DVD was insightful and funny, and not just in comparison to the observations of Łber hunk/Łber dunce Brad Pitt.
But, anyway, Norton was talking about what he did this summer, part of it involved hanging out with his girlfriend,
Salma Hayek (the lucky bastard). The rest of his summer was spent on taking flying lessons, in an attempt to get his pilotís license.
Am I the only one to notice an abundance of movie stars with pilotís licenses? Harrison Ford, John Travolta, and Tom Cruise all spring instantly spring to mind. As I was sitting there watching Norton talk about lessons and flight simulators and whatnot, and I wondered aloud, ďWhat is the deal with that?Ē
Then it hit me like a ton of falling debris; the terrorists are planning on using our own movie stars as weapons against us, and not just in a mind numbing 1984 sort of way, but as actually weapons. When the day of reckoning comes, there will be more actors falling from the sky than there are at Chicken Littleís on Oscar night.
How could no one have recognized this plot before? Is the CIA aware of these diabolical machinations? Shouldnít someone email Tom Ridge?
Today is Bad Samaritan's second anniversary.
I'd meant to get so much done for this occasion, but life, indecision, and the stars got in the way.
I implemented a half-assed new design, which is just temporary, since no on really seemed to like it all that much. I just wanted to get something up, since I was thinking about it and thinking about it so much. Now, I can not think of it for a while, which will free up my mind for important things, like sex.
And, surely, as soon as I stop fretting about the desing, some brilliant idea will occur to me, like producing adult footy-pajamas for that nostalgic 20 something market.
At this point, there are four different designs floating around on various pages of the site. There is this, and this, that, and what you are looking at now. Eventually, very soon hopefully, I'll get my shit together and get everything all pretty and nice and uniform. Although, maybe there is some value in what is going on now. It's sort of like archeology, what with the soil layers differentiating different epochs. Or something.
What I did for last year's anniversary was to wrap up a bunch of the hanging questions of the previous year. I didn't get around to that this time. There are a couple things I can think of off the top of my head to answer, and I will, but maybe it might just be more fun to have you all ask me questions about things, and I'll answer them.
Cool? Ask your questions in the comments, and I'll get right to them.
I am a bad bad samaritan - I haven't posted in an age and a day. But how can I not post on the momentous occasion of bad samaritan's second anniversary?!
Blogging, as we all know, is hard, hard work. We love it, or we wouldn't do it, but that doesn't change the fact that it can get to where it really wears you down. I can't speak for anyone else, but I certainly understood why mg has been given to thoughts of just closing the site down on more than one occasion in the year and a half or so I've been coming here.
I'm certainly glad he's never given in to that impulse. This site is unique (note I did not say "one of the more unique", a perversion of the language of truly horrific proportions; I blame John Madden). Truly unique: No other like it. I don't say that just because the collection of occasional authors mg has collected to contribute here is so diverse, though that's part of it.
This site is shot through with mg's personality; it has "presence." kd once commented that it was tough to come post over here becuase, unlike her own site, you had to be "on" on bad samaritan. It's a daunting prospect sometimes. It certainly speaks to why I don't feel up to the challenge nearly often enough.
One never knows what one will get when one clicks over to bs. That's one of the reasons it's stayed fresh and interesting to me for as long as it has. It's certainly why I make a point of wandering through here pretty much every day.
bs is certainly more than a mere community. It's a thing unto itself. And in two years it has evolved into something rather different from what it once was, as anything on the Internet is prone to do. But it has maintained its mg-ness. And it is that that keeps it worth coming back to.
Congratulations, mg, on the very impressive feat of two years of continuous blogging!
A couple days ago I did a sort of state of the union, about my current romantic entanglement. The second part of my state of the union is that I just celebrated three full months at my new job. I havenít talked about it much, because until now there hasnít been much to talk about.
But, I really want to tell you all just how gloriously happy I am. Well, happy to have health insurance, at least. In the last 4 years the closest Iíve come to medical attention is watching Ocean's Eleven, and, believe it or not, Clooney isnít a doctor; he just played one on TV.
I havenít seen a real doctor in what seems like forever, and man do I need it bad. Since 1999 Iíve had this sort of pussie, oozy thing on myÖ, you donít need to know, but lets just say itíll be important to get that looked at if things progress a little further with Wonder Twin.
What is even better about hitting my 90 days and becoming a full time employee is that I got a nice, moderate raise. Not quite enough to get excited about, but certainly enough to cover my weekly bar tab, which Iíd continued to spend every week, even before I had the money to spend.
That may have been one of the reasons I needed to drink - to forget the fact I didnít have any money to be spending on things like alcohol.
It may sound a little naÔve of me to say this, but the thing that rubs me (in a bad way) about my job is that I donít particularly love it. Since I left the stratum of minimum wage hell, back in my junior year of college, there hasnít been a time I didnít love my job.
And, since graduating college, the times I have been working, I have been working at something that really gets my creative juices flowing. The only thing even moderately flowing now has more to do with the fact they stock the office Ďfridge with free juice, a perk I take almost abusive advantage of, than it does with my charged duties.
Iím still sort of getting used to not loving what I do, but a couple things are helping me along there:
1) There isnít anything else for me to do. The job market is picking up, nearly everyone I know has some kind of job, but it still sucks so much out there, an virtually no one is happy with what they are doing.
2) My refrigerator may still be empty, but it is only because I am entirely too lazy to go grocery shopping, not because the only thing I can afford to eat comes in a pouch and has cooking instructions ďJust add hot water!Ē
3) This is really the most important thing: The people I work with are great. Itís a fun, relaxed atmosphere. We go out for after work drinks a couple times a week, and so maybe the alcohol clouds everything, but there is no drama or backbiting, and everyone seems to genuinely like everyone else, even sober.
So, yeah, Iíll stay here as long as I can, pay off some debt, enjoy myself, and not stress. Iím getting older, but generally responsibility free, there is plenty of time to worry about careers and ďlifeís workĒ. For now, Iím happy, and if I can push myself over that tiny motivational hump, I can rub all that unused creative lotion on some more deserving organs.
And thatís all there is to say really, besides ďThe End.Ē