Monday, March 31, 2008

Stuck in Chi Town

Travelling to Reno is a journey to the center of the Earth. It takes forever to get there from the East coast, and forever to get back. My flight has been delayed so right now it is 11:00 PM local time, midnight EST, and there is no hope that I will get home any time before 3:00 AM. Suffice it to say I'm sleeping in and only going to work at all tomorrow because there is one little thing that can't wait until Tuesday.

I talked to my grandmother today and had another moment of clarity. I have to create a gameplan. It is time to move forward.

Anyway, here are some pictures of the mountains around Reno, which are surprising and gorgeous (the mountains, not the pictures).

Friday, March 28, 2008

This blog is becoming increasingly personal

lately, but soon I might just change it into something. A travel blog maybe? When I was working under the Big Boss a few years back, she would call me in her office and just let go -- she would tell me everything about her life -- work, family, insecurities, fears, failures -- and I would just sit there bright eyed and listen. Some of that stuff was probably stuff I should not have been hearing, but I listened anyway, taking it all in and never saying a word. She said to me one time, "I know this is so much, but I have to tell someone." It became something I accepted as "other duties as assigned", and I guess this blog serves that function for me. I can't put it all out there because it has been made aware to a lot of people who know me irl. But it's the best thing I've got. I have to put this shit out of me, even if it is into cyberspace, the blogosphere, or whatever you wanna call it.

In The God of Animals, which I can't stop thinking about, there is a character named Patty Jo. She married rich and kind of falls for little Alice's bluecollar dad and takes it upon herself to spend gobs of money on Alice, to which Alice does not object. Towards the end she tells Alice that if she had it to do all over again, she would have just gotten a little apartment somewhere and lived by herself, doing what she wanted when she wanted. Careful what you wish for of course, but I know how she feels about doing it all over again, about the delicate line between being alone and being lonely. I think I am a little bit of both -- all alone in this world with very, very few people to trust and turn to, lonely as all hell as I get deeper into my thirties with no "partner", and yet surrounded by people. Seas and seas of people, many of whom feel the same way.

The night before I left town again, my roommate had told me that her boyfriend would be over, but knowing that I had to be up so early they would make an effort to be as quiet as possible. So I laid down for bed and started thinking about all aspects of my life. When "everything" -- really, really, everything that troubles me -- comes to the surface, wanting to live alone again rises towards the top. It's not as easy for that to happen as it may sound.

The last time I had cried was when my grandmother killed herself when I was 18, the week I went to college. The night before I came to Reno I thought about her, about loneliness, about pain and suffering, about money, about my job and my place in this world working for someone else, something bigger than my entreprenuerial spirit, about my lack of any real passion for anything, about my skilllessness, about my good-and-bad roommate situation, about my increasing isolation from my family, about some dude I've seen all of two times and how it should be impossible that I have "feelings" for him. I thought about my dead faith and my profound atheism in a world and a career that begs me to believe, and the thought that there is no one there to answer my prayers. I thought about my health problems, the past, the future. I thought about aging, if I had known then what I know now. I thought about so much more that is forced into my little capsule of a brain.

Then I heard a thud from the roommate's bedroom, and I laid in my bed and cried for the first time in probably 14 years.

It's 8:00 AM here in Reno and I have to start getting ready for a long day of work. So toodles.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

The God of Animals

I'm in Reno, and on the way here I finished The God of Animals,, a great novel about a 12 year old girl's "coming of age" on her family's horse ranch. It is an amazing piece of writing that makes me want to sit down and write something. And it is full of wisdom about people -- loneliness, cruelty, searches for approval, and the selfish versus the selfless. I can't recommend the book highly enough. Definatly worth it, considering I picked it up because I just liked the title.

That said, the physical book itself became a metaphor for my life. Right as I was reaching the end, I discovered that the copy I had purchased was misprinted, basically missing a little over an entire chapter which, after finishing what I had of the book, was pretty much the fucking climax. I could kind of piece together what had happened, but it was disappointing because I really wanted to know what happened to little Alice, and why the final episode came to pass. I walked to Target just now and read the pages I missed, but, the point is, just like my life, right when you get to the good part something goes wrong. Something is accidentally left out, missing.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

How I Roll

How I Roll
Originally uploaded by butch stroll
I think this tag, warning workers to bend their knees when lifting and to even find a partner to assist them in lifting this big ass diva-bag, sums up my problem with overpacking.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Love this crazy Canadian

Don't care whatcha say about it either!

I died a hundred times

I'm a little sad here on Easter Sunday because the reality that I'm about to leave Fantasyland, NC -- a place where work is fun things like site visits, boys are cute and plentiful, food and drink pour freely, mornings are lazy and nights are long, the weather is warm and life is easy, driving is "riding dirty" in my case, and it's all on an expense account -- is sinking in.

Also, after talking to my mom and her detailing the intercounty tour to put flowers on all the graves of dead relatives, the somber realization sinks in that I will one day carry on that tradition.

The week ahead is a long one. Back to normal when I return tomorrow. Back to work and roommates and cat parenting. Back to the gym (I raped and murdered Mrs. Winners last night and cannabilized her ass). But lots of mixed emotions about everything to think about. One last night in Charlotte.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Implementing the S

"NSF", aka "NSA", are three little letters that stand for a certain kind of agreement among those who would hook up. The agreement is broken upon one persons trying to implement the "S". Sometimes this is consensual but more often than not it is one person wanting the S and the other getting the hell out of there. Beware implementing the "S", if you are enjoying your hook up -- and take some time to look inward for where the feelings are coming from that would make you want to do so, when they are clearly not being reciprocated.

I find myself in a potential consensual act of implementing the S but I think we are both wary and it's not like we've known each other more than a week anyway, so...

Anyway, I forget where I heard it put so succinctly but it is true: in any relationship the person who cares about the relationship's duration the LEAST has the control. For this reason I always try to care the least, but I usually end up being the opposite.

I get to typing and then realize how somber and severe and serious it sounds, when I'm trying to just be kind of lightheartedly insightful. Anyhoo, I'm off to ye olde Warehouse 29 now to set that bitch on fire. More later. Happy Easter.


Casting Call for Cormac McCarthy's The Road

Casting agent Nancy Mosser is looking for skinny, grungy actors and extras. The film adaptation of Cormac McCarthy's Pulitzer Prize-winning novel that will star Viggo Mortenson and Charlize Theron will begin shooting in the Pittsburgh area in March.

It's set in a post-cataclysmic America. The few survivors who were not seared by an unspecified fiery disaster are divided into two classes -- barbaric cannibals or their prey.

Men and woman ages 18 to 50 are needed for eight speaking roles and 30 extras.

Producers are looking for people with minimal muscle tone, long stringy hair and a starved, ravaged appearance. They need men capable of growing a full beard.

Also needed: a thin man of any ethnicity who is missing one or both legs. No previous acting experience is needed for this role.


Friday, March 21, 2008

Cause you can’t starve us out and you can’t make us run

It is amazing how a little time provides so much perspective. One of my little love affairs in Gboro is a case in point. Last night I talked with that little motherfucker who I was entirely obsessed with and the realization that he is a horrible human being washed over me like the Atlantic Ocean. Then I got down with Christopher, who is beautiful and young and perfect, and my gears shifted just like that. He's one I may never hear from again but then again maybe I will. Everything is new to me again. I'm starting to feel a little bit of excitement.

I have long lived with the fear that I have faked it all the way to where I am. In other words, it is not talent that has gotten me this far (and that's not to say I'm anywhere near an enviable place) but rather good old fashioned knowing how to play the game.

I sat down with a friend and he looked over my resume though, and his thoughts gave birth to a confidence in me that I can, if it comes to it, find a new job. I have experience that includes words like "manage", "supervise", "maintain", "direct", "global", "New York". That means something, right? There is more that I can do besides run bitches at The World Church of Assimilation.

Yesterday at the Charlotte office, I had a meeting with my boss, the Big Boss, the new lady and the office manager. The Big Boss was on the phone. Previously, my boss had kind of irritated me with certain suggestions, but while we were in the meeting the Big Boss -- not knowing of our previous conversations -- totally contradicted little boss. I looked across the conference table at her and our eyes met...and she knew that my personal validation was filling the room like steam. I am not a dumbass, lady.

Today I was driving my rental car and A Country Boy Can Survive came on. I've never skinned a buck in my life, but that is a lesson I need to learn from my brother. Cleaning guns, hunting wild animals, hanging trout lines...people who know how to do these things will be the survivors when shit goes down. And don't we all know that any day now there's going to be Armageddon?

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

I get around.

I have had an epiphany. While I have been on a whirlwind tour of the Southeast -- wondering about my roommate, worrying about my cats, over-analyzing work scenarios that piss me off wondering about my parents -- and after getting a little pissed with my boss, it came to me. What I have to do. And now it is just a matter of doing it.

I am going to be 32 years old in less than a month. I am firmly in there. Boss Lady mentioned my "five year plan" the other day in a discussion and thought about five years and her being in those five years for about six months TOPS.

I think that the secret to happiness is having something to look forward to. I have not had something to look forward to -- something major -- in a long while but now I'm looking forward to seeing something new in the future, a new lifestyle, and a new challenge to accept.

I know I'm cheesey, but there is a road in Charlotte named "Freedom" and I have really, really been thinking about what that word means.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Number Two: Too Much Information

I am in fact obsessed with my own digestion and take measures to ensure that the process goes smoothly. Unfogged linked an article about this very topic.

"When I do an initial assessment of someone's overall health, I really focus on their digestion and I often find myself getting down to the nitty-gritty when it comes to bowel movements," she says. Seemingly unrelated health problems, including skin rashes, allergy symptoms and hormonal imbalances, can have their root in the gut, an assertion that's supported by recent mainstream biomedical research. "Over and over again, I find that by fine-tuning someone's digestion, other health issues can improve dramatically," Miller says.

Indeed! But the article is not so keen on high colonics and other foofoo "detox" health trends.

"Parents are trying to control their children, corporations are trying to control workers, and on an individual level, we're trying to control our bodies, including our poop: when we poop, how often we poop and what we poop, including the right size, consistency and color." As with all fads that strive toward the perfect body -- be it the face, the pecs or the wardrobe -- Lipkins says we're missing something essential.

I do try to control my poop fwiw. I usually shoot for 3 or 4 in the chart below.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Always a business doing pleasure with ya

Maybe you heard that Governor Eliot Spitzer is in the midst of a prostitution scandal -- allegeldy having spent $80,000 on hookers over the years -- and is set to resign today. This is right in the midst of his the "investigation" playing out around his misuse of state troopers to keep tabs on his political enemy Joseph Bruno, dubbed the "Dirty Tricks" scandal, a phrase which now has a whole new meaning.

Meanwhile, Wall Streeters are celebrating this because of his crackdowns on corruption inherrent to the stockbroking and finance trades. And I'm sure Joseph Bruno has been doing a little dance since Monday. Celebration time or not, Wall Street is still an institution rife with corruption, and Joseph Bruno still creeps me the fuck out. When one person turns out to be a hypocrite, it doesn't make people doing rotten things suddenly good people.

I feel sorry for his wife and his daughters. It's always the poor wife standing beside the fallen politician, whether he's visiting hookers or trying to get some trade in a public restroom, solemn faced and wishing there were a rock close enough to hide under until it all goes away. And the whores...I feel sorry for them too on a number of levels.

Monday, March 10, 2008

In which I bitch a little bit

There is no place like New York City, and that is not always a good thing. New York is indeed the Capital of the World and the nation’s center for theater, art, music, literature, fashion and everything important. But it is also filthy and loud unlike any other place. Today in the NY Post there was this article about the City’s loudest neighborhoods. Two of these areas regularly have decibel readings that are considered dangerous to humans. One of those areas is Washington Heights, where I lived for a year in a flophouse. Maybe this is why my hearing is all shot to hell. Nonetheless I’m very sensitive to noise and feel increasingly desperate for some peace and quiet, of which I get very little being in this city, and sharing an apartment with an admittedly LOUD person. But I digress.

The print article quotes two little 20-something shits (strangely missing from the web version) who both make the claim that if you don’t like the noise, “you shouldn’t have come here”. To these typical newcomers I reply with the newsflash that there are people who did not “come here”, but have been here for their whole lives*. These are the kind of people who whine incessantly the minute they are affected by something that is considered “par for the course” in New York. Yet, they become authorities on what makes New York New York and what you should be expected to tolerate when you “come here”. They also assume that New York has always been like it is when they got here ten minutes ago. They also think that their dreams are going to come true and that being a New Yorker makes them in some way special. I hate these people.

In my recent travels I have to say that every place is missing some of the things that New York has, but every place has also has a level of peacefulness that goes unappreciated because people from those places don’t know what it means to catch a downtown train at rush hour or to live in a apartment that is so old you hear every step anyone takes through the whole building due to squeaky hardwood floors. If I ever moved to say, Louisville or Charlotte, my major worry would be getting fat. I would likely sleep like a baby and be washed in a feeling of liberation. Of course, I’d miss all this madness and the opportunities that are here.

In other news, there are traces of sedatives in the New York City water supply, which I have no problem with. In fact, a big part of me thinks they should just pump fucking valium in by the gallons so all these spaztastic fools can just chill out a little bit, myself included.

*Granted the natives are big contributors to the noise and they know this is true.

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Why they hate us

Towards the end of the first season of Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, Sarah mentions a woman she knew when she was a waitress who had children she was trying to get into showbiz. The woman would say nasty things to the kids, like their teeth weren't strait enough, and pushed them hard to get into the industry. She says, to the chagrin of Derek Reese, "I can almost understand why they drop bombs on us," in reference to Skynet.

Well I think less than horrible parenting it would have to do with human behavior in airports and on airplanes. I swear, after a day in airports, I'm calling for the eradication of humanity.

Saturday, March 08, 2008

"What the hell is a 'Bedazzler'?"

Snow Storm

I'm kind of stranded in Louisville. Hopefully my flight will be okay tomorrow, but it's supposed to snow more. Anyway, my camera screwed up on the date setting so those pictures say "1999" but they are really from today. :)

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Times Square Bombed

This morning I woke up, took a shower, and immediately headed to the airport for a flight to Louisville, KY. So when the flight attendant asked me (I was sitting in the very front seat) if I had heard about Times Square, I had not. To hear her tell it, a nuclear device destroyed Manhattan and surrounding areas. Of course I later realize it was a little homemade bomb at the Army recruitment center, and no one was hurt, but it's still frightening and angering.

The very first job I ever had in New York City was on Wall Street at TD Waterhouse -- which I think has since shut down or changed hands or something. As has always been the case -- and continues to be the case in my life -- getting to a job at 9:00 AM is a struggle to say the least. One day when I was rushing down there, I ran into a major delay -- some little homemade bomb, the style of which was similar to the Times Square incident this morning -- had gone off right across the street.

K-rock was telling me one time about this woman she knows, the wife of a big-time rich-ass TV producer, who happened to know OJ Simpson. She was telling K-rock how nice of a guy OJ is. When K-rock asked, " you think he did it?" the woman's reply was, "Oh yeah he definitely did it. He's still a nice guy though." The woman then went on to explain how she finds it amazing that people don't just lose their shit and kill each other a lot more often than they do.

We live in this scary dangerous world and New York is particularly scary in regards to, like, murder and people trying to blow things up. But I have to agree with that woman...I'm really amazed there is not just widespread destruction, chaos and murder all the time all over the place, especially in New York. Lord knows everyone here has been driven a little bit crazy.

Monday, March 03, 2008

High Anxiety

Readers may know that I am TERRIFIED and OBSESSED with the bedbug epidimic plaguing NYC, other areas, and the hotel industry. Well yesterday my roommate told me that she took the trash out and there was a mattress laying down in the trash area with a big sign on it that read: Do Not Reuse, INFESTED. I can only assume this means "infested with bedbugs." This has sent me into a panic because they spread in apartment buildings. If I get fucking bedbugs from one of my damn neighbors I swear I am leaving everything in that apartment and moving with just my cats and the freshly washed clothes on my back to somewhere less nasty and dangerous than NYC and STARTING FROM SCRATCH.

I couldn't sleep last night but not because of bedbug anxiety, but because of my roommates boyfriend. I havn't really written about this situation much here because it is hugely complicated -- moreso than it seems on the surface -- but anyway the jist of it is he is loud and does things that, as a guest, should just not be done. I've addressed all of this a number of times, trying to be sensitive and sympathetic. So this morning when he came in and woke me up with banging around and being generally loud, I got up and sent my roommate and email while she was fast asleep about all the issues I'm having, expecting her to get it this morning so we can just settle this and I can live my life. Of course she called in sick today so it will be sitting there until tomorrow (she only checks it at work, I think).

Also if I ever hear them having sex again I'm sending the cats in with claws out. Heterosexuality and its noises is just GROSS. ;)