Thursday, February 28, 2008

The oddest injury I've ever sustained.

I'm sorry for anyone expecting a re-run, but this is actual new content. For the past few days I've been suffering from a nagging injury. I've been hesitant to blog about it, but this is the single stupidest way I've ever hurt myself (which, if you knew me like I know me, is saying a lot). And that means I can complain about it.
On Monday evening, while attempting to blow my nose, I suddenly sneezed and tore up my throat.

Let me repeat that (we dig repetition here at The Slog).

On Monday evening, while attempting to blow my nose, I suddenly sneezed and tore up my throat.

And when I say "tore-up," I don't mean, "made a little sore."

I mean, "I started spitting up blood, and instantaneously made myself feel like I had strep throat."

If you are ever thinking about sneezing while blocking your one clear nostril and having your mouth closed: don't. Holy hell, I thought I was having an aneurysm. It felt as if my head inflated like a Tex Avery character. I was under the momentary impresssion that my brain had actually ejected out of the back of my skull.

Not to mention the lion's share of The Crap My Body Needed to Sneeze Out came though my tear ducts. That's right, in addition to my brain exploding and my throat feeling like it was full of glass shards, I ended up sneezing through my eyes.

I now return you to your regularly scheduled romp down Memory Lane.

MySpace Archive: Using Antisemitism To Flirt With Jews

In an attempt to beef up this blog's appearance before I actually tell anyone about its existence, and also to relive some of my wacky antics over on MySpace, I am archiving all of my old posts over here at The Slog.

Let me fill you in on some backstory: This post dates from a time when I was single, but was in the midst of a long, drawn-out, both-parties-in-denial flirtation with my current girlfriend, who is a Red Sea Pedestrian (and who I should not mock, as there is a good chance she's the only person that actually reads this blog). I was raised by Southern Baptists.1 It's like Random Sitcom Situation #37! Her MySpace screen name at the time was Ali Blue-Backpack, if that helps contextualize the beginning for all zero of my non-Ali readers.

Anywhoo, looking back, I think I was using the time-honored fourth grade flirting technique of "hitting someone and then running away." Only I added a modern twist!2

I was surprisingly happy at that point in my life,3 and therefore not complaining. And as anyone who knows me well knows, I'm not happy unless I'm not happy. With nothing to complain about, I had nothing really to say (which has, admittedly, never stopped me before).

Note, I am switching my "new commentary" over to footnotes. This is largely because I finally looked up the HTML code for it.

[Orignally posted on Friday, February 16, 2007]

Well, I have this friend...

...let's call her (for the sake of this thought excercise) "Jewy Blue-Backpack" or "Jewy" for short.

Jewy has a problem with my frequency of blog posts. She thinks that because she is pouring out all of the intimate details of her shattered Semitic psyche4 onto the metaphorical floor of the blogosphere, then I should too.

But, my life is going really well right now. I'm reasonably happy with my job5, my standard of living, my ability to cope, my lack of malignant tumors of the lung, and my hair (except at work, but I don't want to go on about how I'm forced to style it like a young Hitler there - on account of the whole "Jewy" nickname I might come off a little too hateful and Amon Goerth-y for my taste)6.

And a life that's going well makes for really dull blog posts. I'm at my most entertaining when I'm miserable. And, sorry Jewy: I'm not miserable. I'm content.

I suppose I could complain that my little dog has worms in his colon right now. But he's kind of a douchebag, and probably deserved it7. Besides, I have already dropped 3 and a half C-notes on meds and tests for for the little bastard, and it turns out he's probably gonna be fine in a few weeks. The Spark is a resiliant little turd. Just like his old man...

Actually, for the sake of honesty, I should admit that Jewy actually put that on her credit card for me- but I'm writing her a check today (as I just got paid).

Hell, I just got paid! There's another reason to be happy! I have money in the bank! My power and my phone won't be cut off! I can buy food! I can get a CD copy of Zeppelin IV8 (dude, I gotta get When the Levee Breaks9 out of my system)! I can get really drunk this weekend and waste it all!

Anywhoo. In conclusion: Life is good. My dog is sick, but he'll improve. I have no reason to complain. My friend has been Chosen by YHWH.10

The end.

And, after this I didn't post again for two months (which you will note is a frequent pattern). Until I was drawn into The Dark Underbelly of the 80s.


1. I'm no longer a Southern Baptist, as I stopped believing in fairy tales, especially nasty ones, as a teenager.

2. That twist: random bigotry.

3. Especially surprising, given that I lived in a what amounted to a shoebox with a stove and, like now, earned a paycheck by getting essentially yelled at by People with More Money Than Brains.

4. I will admit that this technique is actually cheaper than therapy. And probably about as effective. On a side note, The People With More Money Than Brains often use me as a sort of ad hoc therapist. If I responded to their complaints with "And how does that make you feel," I could probably get away with charging $125 an hour.

5. Liar!

6. My hair still kind of sucks, but I've never been altogether pleased with that aspect (or any aspect, really) of my head.

7. Time has not changed my opinion on this one whit.

8. I actually never did. Truth-in-blogging.

9. What a kickass song. Seriously. I spent years hating Zep because punks are supposed to. But damn that song beats the hell out of anything Screeching Weasel ever did.

10. Number of times I went for a Pointless Jew Joke in original post alone: 8

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

MySpace Archive: The Death of Saparmurat Niyazov

In an attempt to beef up this blog's appearance before I actually tell anyone about its existence, and also to relive some of my wacky antics over on MySpace, I am archiving all of my old posts over here at The Slog.

This little slice of half-assery is presented with an extended afterward, to give my 2.7 readers More Value For the Money.

[Originally posted on Thursday, December 21, 2006]

Well, my very favorite dictator just died (and it's not that rat-bastard Pinochet)

Oh, I will miss this man:

My original link from the blog is dead. But here's his Wikipedia entry.

This article doesn't do him justice [it didn't]. I urge everyone to google him and learn of his glory [which I have already done for you].

Truly the end of an era.

And I stopped blogging for like 2 months at this point. Even though this was not so much a blog as a link dump. Pretty much all of my blogs for the next year could technically be tagged Indefinite Hiatus, but I'm reserving that one for real-time lags
I was going to block-print the following, but my tangent overtook this rather paltry original entry:

Saparmurat Niyazov was a hoot. We shall not soon see his like again.

However, if I can get a hold of a small country (or better yet, a large North American one roughly south of Canada and north of Mexico), I have a few plans as well. The main one, of course being devoting the lion's share of the budget to developing Jetsons technology. And though this would be simpler through my own installation as Semi-Benevolent Dictator, I would be willing to work through the Democratic process (ie, in my long plotted presidential bid in 2012 for the "Where's My Jetsons Shit?" Party - more on that later, I'm sure). I am VERY serious about both Flying Cars and Sassy, Wise-Cracking Robot Maids.

But other plans in the works? A series of 50-foot high statues of myself, made entirely of stale circus peanuts, placed at 25-mile intervals across the land. You wanna talk job creation? Just fending off the birds alone would provide jobs for millions of our Nations' Illiterate Gun-Toting Loons. Not to mention a huge boost to both the Circus Peanut industry and the field of Candy-Related Artisanship.

Also, my state funeral will be BITCHIN': My huge marble mausoleum (made entirely of actual marbles glued together into a mosaic of Lee Van Cleef's face on each wall) will house a film projecter that broadcasts onto an IMAX screen (placed in front of the faces of Mt. Rushmore) a perpetual loop of Peter Grave's eulogy from the final minutes of It Conquered the World:

“He learned almost too late that Man is a feeling creature. And that because of it he is the greatest creature in the universe. He learned too late that Men have to make their own way and make their own mistakes and that there can’t be any gift of perfection from outside ourselves. That when we seek such perfection we only find death, fire, loss, disillusionment, the end of everything that’s gone forward. Men have always sought an end to toil and misery and if it can’t be given, it has to be achieved. There is hope but it has to come from Man himself.”
My god, it will be beautiful...

Monday, February 25, 2008

My Space Archive: Death Denouement

In an attempt to beef up this blog's appearance before I actually tell anyone about its existence, and also to relive some of my wacky antics over on MySpace, I am archiving all of my old posts over here at The Slog.

Having faced my imminent mortality for upwards of 5 days, I was in a "deep" mood. Well, as deep as I'm usually capable of being (Note the Clash reference took almost 7 USA-Today-length paragraphs to appear).

I did and do mean what I said here. For what it's worth.

[Originally posted on Friday, November 24, 2006]

Well, I've done a lot of soul-searching...

...over the past few days. Kind of hard not to when you're faced with your own mortality (see "Well, I DON'T have cancer"). And I've come to some conclusions.

I'm not one of those naive jackasses who claims that "This changes EVERYTHING." Nobody really changes for more than a few weeks after a scare like that. The only real change that I truly plan to never have another cigarette, no matter how plastered I get. Funny how a lung cancer scare makes you read the warnings a little more seriously [The irony: that was a non-cigarette-related cancer, as far as I know].

But, for the time being, I've realized that my life is far to short to get embroiled in pettiness and crappy argumentative behavior. So, I'm offering a combination blanket apology and general amnesty to everyone I have ever hurt or been hurt by before Wednesday, November 22nd, 2006. Life is WAAAAAY too short to get caught up on bullshit like that.

However, in keeping with my general policy of cynicism and impatience, I'm also not going to put up with any more crap from those I have already apologized to on numerous occasions or those that have no desire to apologize or atone for their past actions (believe it or not, I'm really not singling anyone out, this is just a general statement - so don't nobody come whining to old Jon that I'm picking on them, I'm not) [I wasn't. No really. Stop looking at me like that]. Life is also WAAAAAY too short to either feel guilty or waste my time with people that don't care enough either way to repair lines of communication that are broken.

I've also decided that I'm not going to ever tell anyone that I've got a potentially fatal condition until I'm sure. I didn't exactly go blabbing all over creation about this, but in the limited pool of folks that I went out of my way to tell (and I know that they told a few others, so those people don't count), only ONE person [Hi, Ali!] didn't either discount my fears to the point that I felt stupid or treat me with such kid gloves and worry that I ended up feeling guilty for bothering them.

And I've decided that when I go to the doctor for persistent pain and they tell me I might have a life-threatening illness, I'm still going to demand a prescription for the original pain. All that emotional and financial stress, and I still have no pills/salve/PT to relieve the cold fire in my shoulder blade, which is as bad as it ever was. Jeez, doc, hook a Cracka' up [If anyone out there is a doctor, I could still use some pills. I'm not in pain, but hey, couldn't hurt...].

The final decision I've made is that I seriously need to listen to the Clash more. 17 hours a day is clearly insufficient.Um...peace out, y'all...I guess...

There's a lot of subtext in this one. But not as much as some folks probably thought.

Next on The Archive: Don't Cry For Me, Turkmenistan.

MySpace Archive: My Brush With Death (Part 2 of 2)

(Or: Anticlimax On A Grand Scale)

In an attempt to beef up this blog's appearance before I actually tell anyone about its existence, and also to relive some of my wacky antics over on MySpace, I am archiving all of my old posts over here at The Slog.

My Brush With Death Comes to a thrilling conclusion today. SPOILER ALERT: I don't die.

Like most things in life, this was pretty dissappointing, huh?

Well, not for me. I was fucking elated.
[Originally posted on Wednesday, November 22, 2006]

Well, I DON'T have cancer!

Current mood: Fucking elated

This is what I don't have: Pancoast's syndrome. Also known as Superior Sulcus tumors. A relatively uncommon form of lung cancer whose stage II description happened to fit every symptom I have right now.

Thank goodness the murky potential tumor on my X-ray was just old scarring from my 2 bouts of childhood pneumonia.

I'm not going to lie. I was scared shitless for the past few days.

Of course, this means I still have ridiculous, unexplained weight loss and near-crippling pain in my right shoulder blade [I have since gained about 5 pounds back. And my shoulder does not hurt anymore. It's a Christmas miracle]. Not to mention something like 1200 bucks worth of medical bills with no insurance. But at least I have a higher than 2 out of 3 chance of outliving Jesus now [Pretty edgy, huh?].

Now that I have a second lease on life, I feel it's time to squander it on bourbon and McRib value meals.

You know what? I'm going to take time out of my busy schedule of Not Dying and Rehashing Old Crap to complain about the whole "McRib on Tour" marketing plan. I'm so sick of being McDonald's bitch every time the unholy goodness of McRib hits the Windy City (pretty much every December, making it as seasonal as Egg Nog and twice as WASP-y).

The only thing I'm more sick of than that is people telling me how nasty the McRib is. Yes, I've seen it without the sauce. Yes, I'm aware that it's not really "barbecue." I grew up in South-By-God-Carolina. I know barbecue.

But I also know the McRib is a fine slice of fast-food Americana, and I will not stand idly by during its mocking by some fictional straw-man reader. I just want to have it available year round, so I'm not at the mercy of Ray Kroc's ghost when I want pressed pork-like byproducts on an oblong bun.

Okay, enough of that odd cul-de-sac. Next blog: I forgive everyone for everything. Sort of.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

MySpace Archive: My Brush With Death

In an attempt to beef up this blog's appearance before I actually tell anyone about its existence, and also to relive some of my wacky antics over on MySpace, I am archiving all of my old posts over here at The Slog.

Welcome to part one of my exciting two part series "My Brush With Death." It would have been a lot longer, had I actually said anything about This Particular Brush while it was actually looming in my brain.

Of course, at this point, I had no idea that I was About To Possibly Die At Some Point In the Near Future If Certain Things Turned Out To Be The Case. The fact that they did not turn out to be the case in no way lessened the Personal Horror.

In any case, at this point my mind was more focused on the Nameless Fear of the Unknown that is usually brought about by contemplating the flagship series in the Lifetime Network syndication lineup. The fact that, despite being on Lifetime, the show did not contain a Judith Light appearance should in no way lessen the Personal Horror.

I will be presenting this particular Archive with limited editorial interruption, as it is one of my personal favorites.

[Originally posted on November 7, 2006]

Well, I'm going to a free clinic (plus Golden Girls house)

I have finally crossed the line from everyday pain to ridiculous pain in my shoulder (did I mention my shoulder has been feeling like it's full of cold fire for the past month and a half? I probably should have), and need to see a doctor. But (and this is a huge but - I should up the font, but I'm just not that Pomo) [But I am NOW.], I am not insured. And I won't be for at least 2 months.

So I get to trek my sorry hiney [Did I really write "hiney" here? I guess I did. Shameful] to the free clinic today, whereupon I can mention this pain, the weight loss, maybe get some baselines done, and while I'm at it, what better opportunity to get a cotton swab up my urethra and maybe a prostate exam. Just to keep the dignity at an all-time high.

Also, if they've expanded their areas of coverage to psychiatric disorders, I should really talk to a therapist about my increasing inability to comprehend the geography of the Golden Girls' house. This is a problem I've had for years (I'm a Bea Arthur fan, like all good-hearted people - and no, it's not prurient, you sickos).

I hesitate to explain my problems with the House That Blanche Built, for fear of spreading my own neuroses about the Non-Euclidean, almost Lovecraftian dimensions of that abode of the 60-something damned to those who have been innocent of this nightmare. However, I will make a few observations (and I would love to be able to provide visual aids, but I cannot draw dimensions beyond what the human mind and the set department at Buena Vista can envision).

I assume the reader has a basic knowledge of the set of this popular show, a mainstay of the NBC evenings of the late 80s/early 90s and the Lifetime Network mornings, afternoons, and late nights ever since. I also assume a basic knowledge of stage directions (a primer for my rare non-theatre acquaintances: all directions are from the standpoint of a performer facing the audience - stage right is to the audience's left - and downstage is closer to the audience, upstage is away).

There are three major set pieces in the house: the Living Room, with its front door on stage right, open Lanai windows upstage, unused breakfast nook (a mainstay of all shows featuring an all-woman cast - I refer to my monograph on the cast flux in Designing Women, first published in 1999) and hallway upstage left, and stage left kitchen exit; the Kitchen, with its stage right door to the living room and upstage right door to the garage; and the aforementioned Lanai (which is apparently some sort of patio, but I have never heard anyone use the term outside of Golden Girls studies - in much the same way that I've never heard the words Oleo or Erne used outside of crossword puzzles). There are also assorted smaller sets, including bedrooms, a garage, and a front patio area.

Here are my issues (not all of them, I have limited time and space and will have to wait until I have time to compose a full-length academic study to go in full depth). I apologize if some of these statements overlap, but this is part and parcel of the nature of the beast:

1. The Front Door: From the exterior shots, the front door in no way resembles the front door/patio (not Lanai) area. Also, what is the Cabbalistic significance of the exclamation point-shaped gouge on the inside of the door? Is it the set design equivalant of a fnord? If you don't know what a fnord is, please do not ask. You are safer not knowing.

2: The Bedrooms (Part one): The hall leads straight back to the four bedrooms. They are evidently set two to a side. However, that would mean that the two stage right bedrooms exist in the same temporal space as the Lanai. This is impossible in three-dimensional space.

3: The Bedrooms (Part two): The first stage left bedroom (Rose) seems harmless enough, but I refer you to point 5 where the illogical non-recursion begins to haunt my nights.

4: The Bedrooms (Part three): What the Samuel Langhorne Hell is the deal with the paint job in Blanche's room? Even if not technically impossible, it's hard to wrap one's mind around the mentality of one who would find that acceptable.

5: The Kitchen/Garage/Rose's Room Conundrum: This is almost too hard for me to bear. If I break down and start ranting about Elder Gods and Things Man Was Not Meant To Know, bear with me. The entrance to the kitchen from what I presume is the garage is upstage right. However, the window behind the sink clearly shows this garage (where, you might remember, the GG's tried their hand at Mink Farming, with hilarious results) must be off further to right. But that's exactly where Rose's room is. But even beyond this fact, that also means, given the spatial relationship of the front door (no matter how it's interpreted) to the rest of the house, that the driveway comes in from the back and center of the home (a patent impossibility). Especially considering it is supposedly coming from the stage left side of the exterior. Auugh.

In closing: if this house were designed by Dr. Calagari, it's dimensions couldn't be less sane. M.C. Escher on a peyote-fueled Spirit Journey into the Navidson residence from House of Leaves couldn't conceive of a less likely arrangement of living quarters. I fear for the basic sanity of those poor aging, yet still active, women, struggling to keep up in a young person's world while being subjected to physical laws so different than our own.

To the 2 people who will likely be still reading to this point, thank you for hearing me out, and thank you for being a friend.

I wish I could have found a bigger picture of Bea Arthur as The Starchild, but that picture has apparently disappeared from the interwebs. It used to pop up on the first page if you searched for pictures of Bea Arthur. And yes, I have done a lot of searches for pictures of Bea Arthur.

Technically, My Brush With Death occurred in between this post and the next. So, once again I have built things up for no damn good reason.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

MySpace Archive: Interlude 3

(Or, Beer, Zombies, and a Paycheck)

In an attempt to beef up this blog's appearance before I actually tell anyone about its existence, and also to relive some of my wacky antics over on MySpace, I am archiving all of my old posts over here at The Slog.

This is technically the end of The Unemployment Saga, but much like Murphy Brown or The Drew Carey Show, there was a long winding down period that was WAAAY to anticlimactic for even my low standards. By this point, I had been getting semi-regular temp work, so I wasn't flipping out every day.

[Originally Posted on Monday, November 06, 2006]

Well, I'm gainfully employed again as of Friday

Hot diggity damn, it looks like I might actually have a chance to lead a normal life again. I start a temp-to-permanent job on Friday for a property management company [A job I still have]. The place looks nice[It's not], the job looks simple[It is], and I look to actually be making enough at it to start saving and stop living paycheck to paycheck [I probably do. Damn this profligacy].

I think this week I'm going to celebrate by not doing a damn thing until Thursday (I'll have a few errands to run by then) [I didn't]. Or, at the very least, drinking beer and watching zombie movies with my dog [I did]. Well, my dog won't be drinking beer. He's not housebroken enough for that [He still isn't]. But he's totally going to have to watch Dawn of the Dead with me (the real one with the SLOW zombies and the dude who gets sliced by the chopper blade) [A scene both awesome and hilarious. Tom Savini is the man]. And maybe, just maybe, I'll actually hang up all the pictures that I keep promising I'll get to when I get a chance [That "chance" occurred roughly two months later. Because I am lazy].


Prescient about my laziness, I see.

Next time: the beginning of My Brush With Death. Plus, GOLDEN GIRLS HOUSE!

MySpace Archive: Interlude 2

(Or, Passive Aggression or Classic Rock?)

In an attempt to beef up this blog's appearance before I actually tell anyone about its existence, and also to relive some of my wacky antics over on MySpace, I am archiving all of my old posts over here at The Slog.

Man, that interlude was LONGER than I remembered. Days. Days when I wrote about nothing much at all.

I suspect, if I were the psychonalyzing type, that this was meant to let people know that whatever side they took on my then-nasty and still unhealed breakup was entirely their business, and I was done apologizing. But I'm not, so it was probably to talk up my love of London Calling.

[Originally posted on Saturday, November 04, 2006]

Well, life is actually pretty good

For once, I feel like I'm getting back in control. The temping seems to be working out pretty well (worked 4 days last week). I may be starting a 2-month assignment next week for 3.50 an hour more than the shitty job that I had before [Didn't happen, but something better DID]. So they can suck it [That pronoun might be a little unclear. I meant my previous employers. They still can]. Still no permanent job, but if I can hear back from the agency about this assignment, it takes the heat off through January, and I might actually be able to pay some people back AND save a little cash [That sort of happened. But I'm profligate with my money. And my Thesaurus].

I'm certainly not on my feet financially, but I'm actually pretty damn happy with my life. My dog is less of a monster [...grading on a curve, I guess], I'm less hypochondriacal (is that a word? Who cares?) about the weight loss [it isn't a word - and reading that gives me a chuckle, knowing what I know now], I'm caring less and less about the irrational hatred that my ex has for me (I broke her heart, but it really wasn't intentional - if she doesn't want to believe that, I can't change it) [I still feel bad about this, but as I said, I never meant to hurt anyone], and I'm beginning to remember that morbid depression isn't really my forte [pronounced "fort," by the way. You've probably been saying it wrong your whole life. Idiot]. I'll leave that to Cure fans and other people that should know better [Sez the guy who had just dressed up as Morrissey].

Me? I'm better at being mildly annoyed and bitchy about things without taking it so personally.

I think the main thing I need to do is listen to London Calling (not only the Greatest Album Ever Made, but also The Greatest Accomplishment Of the Entire Human Race - and if you disagree, you can go to hell) from front to back without interruption...

If I do that, I think I'll be completely, deliriously happy. Then I can move on to my next mission: deciding whether I ever want to date again. Currently, the answer is "not really, but I suppose I could have a meaningless sexual encounter with a stranger or passing acquaintance."

Well that last idea didn't really pan out.

It almost never does.

Looks like at least one more "Interlude" post before My Brush With Death. Sorry I'm boring.

MySpace Archive: Interlude

(Or...Heaven Knows I'm Not As Miserable Now)

In an attempt to beef up this blog's appearance before I actually tell anyone about its existence, and also to relive some of my wacky antics over on MySpace, I am archiving all of my old posts over here at The Slog.

I apologize for the three-week delay on what is essentially a copy-paste job (alreay tagging this as "Indefinite Hiatus"). But considering my readership is like 2 people and a cat, I'm sure I haven't offended anyone deeply.

The reason for my absence is that my girlfriend's grandmother succumbed to cancer recently, and my time was spent first in the hospital, then at the funeral, and finally at home, recoving from food poisoning. In any event, such deeply emotionally resonant issues seem so out of place in a blog such as this (which should really be reserved for how ugly my dog is and what I think about Ghostbusters II), so I will not be discussing them until at least 2012.

I also apologize for the fact I promised My Brush With Death started now. I totally forgot that there was a lull between Unemployment and Facing My Mortality.

Around this point in my previous blogging existance, my life stabilized and got a little better. Sort of. Until it got worse. Then better. Then a little worse again. Then better
[Originally posted on Saturday, October 28, 2006]

Well, my life is slowly stabilizing

Okay, so everything in my my life hasn't been going exactly as planned lately. But I have been doing a great deal better.

I've done a little temping this week, so though I'm still hemorrhaging cash, it's now a slow seep, not arterial spray. And I have two interviews scheduled for tomorrow. Joyous. One doesn't pay as much as I'd like, but has benefits. [The pay turned out to be wretched. They didn't hire me because they knew I would never stay there for more than a few weeks] The other? Well, another temp agency, but one that is on the higher hourly end (a "boutique" agency, apparently). [I learned at that interview that I can type 55wpm when I'm on a tear. Amazing. I was still a "hunt-and-peck" guy through my mid-20s]

If there's one thing I've consistently been able to nail, it's a job interview. I may be a twitchy, nervous bastard on a day-to-day basis, but man do I interview well. So, with any luck, I may be employed again soon. Then I can get back to bitching about how much my job sucks. [Seriously, my job fucking sucks.]

On a totally unrelated note, I'm going to a Halloween party tonight. I usually have a great time at any Halloween party where I'm not accosted by a Marine. [I actually had a great time at that one too] But, as my costume is designed to piss people off, I can't guarantee that (unless there are no Marines, but they seem to show up anywhere. Like mushrooms).

My costume (sssh, don't tell the guy throwing it): Morrissey. Yes. That's right. I'm gonna get all big haired, effeminate, and, hearing-aidy. I'm gonna throw on the kermit voice and start singing "Heaven Knows I'm Misreable Now," and just wait for the angry jarheads to come out of the woodwork.

At least I didn't dress as Rick Morrissey.

The interlude continues shortly. But storm clouds are gathering...

Monday, February 4, 2008

MySpace Archive: The Unemployment Saga, Part the Fifth

In an attempt to beef up this blog's appearance before I actually tell anyone about its existence, and also to relive some of my wacky antics over on MySpace, I am archiving all of my old posts over here at The Slog.

Please, feel free to start from the beginning and move forward in roughly chronological order, as I am not trying to give some sort of Pinter-esque unfolding of the plot. I'd paste the link, like I have in previous entries, but Jesus, it's not like it's from like 50 entries ago. Just scroll.

Due to the intricate interlocking nature of my carefully scripted life, the first entry also doubles as a foreshadowing of the approaching sequel to this award-avoiding time waster -- MySpace Archive II: My Brush With Death.

[Originally posted on 10/24/2006]

Well, I'm suffering from full-blown hypochondria

Anyone who knows me well knows I am a bit of a nervous person. I'm skittish. I jump at small things. Actually, I fit the standard DSM IV diagnosis for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder pretty well (specifically Criteria B1, B4, B5, C1, C2, C5, C7, D2, D3, and D5). I think I was originally going to try to say something witty here, but honestly, I'm reasonably effed-up, and looking up the DSM IV criteria didn't help me stay on topic at all...

But deep inside myself, I'm usually tranquil over health issues. I'm not one to worry too deeply about the physical well being of my body. Sure, I get frequent headaches, and I have sciatica, have a history of benign polyps, get a 2-month cold every winter, etc. But nothing has scared me deeply about my long-term viability as an organism on planet earth.

Until I started looking great.

Reread that. I'm looking as good as I've looked in years. So of course, something must be wrong, right?

When I turned 25, something happened to my body. Something that permenantly changed my self preception. I lost my metabolism. Anyone who saw me (or even has seen photographs of me before that time) knows I looked like a scarecrow. I ate and ate and never gained weight. I was 30 pounds underwieght without any effort on my part. But that all changed in the summer of '01. I gained 45 pounds in a matter of months, and gradually ended up (by this March), weighing 211 pounds. I felt like the Michelin Man.

Over the past (maybe) three months, however, I have started losing weight. Dramatically. And this weight loss has been almost entirely without provocation. I haven't significantly changed my eating patterns (I am a slave to my appetite), and I sure as hell ain't exercising. At first, I figured "Okay, I'm single, I'm eating less, etc..." But I know for a fact that I lost at least 35 pounds before the last time I've used a scale (a few weeks ago). And since then, I've needed to add yet another hole to my belt (which now extends all the way to the loop on the side). So god knows what I'm weighing now. [Good news: I've gained 10 pounds since I wrote this. Yay...]

Anywhoo, I've got a severe paranoia going on, as I've lost at least 18% of my body weight [Yes, I actually did this math] without trying. Of course, I have no insurance and no job (see almost any other blog I've posted). And the free clinic hasn't returned my calls.So to recap: fat and ugly - must be fine. Thin and attractive - terminal case. Thanks brain. You're the tops.
Stirring, huh? It only got better later that day.

Well, I'm burnt out on sending resumes

My second bitchfest of the day:

I've sent what feels like thousands of resumes out today. The actual number is probably closer to 15 or so, but I'm talking subjective feelings here. So I sit here in my friend's [To anyone new to my universe, this friend was my then future, now current girlfriend Ali. At the time I was in massive denial about the impending relationship that was fated to occur] apartment (did I mention I don't have internet access at home?) frantically checking craigslist, the chicago reader, et al in the desperate hope that one of these will click soon. I'm starving and about to take a lunch break, but of course, it doesn't matter what I eat, I will continue to lose weight until I look like an unwrapped mummy.

Thankfully, my dad is mailing me a check to cover my rent. I'd like to point out that I would rather scoop my nipples out with a melon baller [rejected in draft format: "eat my own genitals with a knife and fork"] than ask my dad for rent money. He's an adjunct college professor who just lost 50% of his courseload this semester (because some freshly minted PhD with no real world experience is obviously going to be better at teaching business and management than a man with a Masters degree and over 30 years of industry experience both firsthand and consulting). He doesn't have the kind of money to toss to his 30 year old unemployed son. But he does it anyway, bacause he's my dad. Of course, I told him I got my hours drastically cut, not that I don't have a job. Because why be honest with your family? [So, my dad later discovered my MySpace blog (soon to be archived here). He hasn't mentioned this yet. Yet.]

But enough about that guilt-filled cul-de-sac. I'm mainly just writing to say that I have been extensively applying for jobs online all day (with a few 5-minute breaks here and there), and I am burnt out.

Somebody better hire me soon. I need a rest from job hunting. It's far more tiring than just working myself to death ever could be.

From the clarity that only gainful employment can bring, I can honestly say I'm not sure that's true.

The Unemployment Saga concludes here, as I managed to secure some temping
jobs. My Brush With Death begins in earnest next post. You lucky devils.

MySpace Archive: The Unemployment Saga, Part the Fourth

In an attempt to beef up this blog's appearance before I actually tell anyone about its existence, and also to relive some of my wacky antics over on MySpace, I am archiving all of my old posts over here at The Slog.

It occurs to me I probably should have labelled these all as "Fits," a la "The Hunting of the Snark." Fit the First, Fit the Second, etc.

Nah. In retrospect, that's super queer.

Well, if you want to start from the beginning, I recommend going to the pretentiously named Part the First.

[Originally posted on 10/20/2006]

Well, I'm feeling artistic, yet inert

Current mood: Artistic, yet inert (God, I'm clever)
As with most previous times in my life, the nearer I get to rock bottom, the more likely I am to actually do something artistic in my life. Right now I'm actually feeling damn creative. The only problem is, I really need to be looking for work (on account of I'm still roughly 550 bucks away from having a home next month [Don't worry - I made it. Sorry if that killed the suspense]).

Actually, that's not my only problem. I also happen to be having a glut of ideas at present, and conflicting desires about what to focus on. I have a full length play that is so damn close to being finished (it damn well better be after hanging around my neck like a two-act albatross for the last 5 years), another full length that just needs a bit of focus to be kick-started into existence, a tremendous idea for a comic (GRAPHIC NOVEL, DAMMIT - no, wait, I actually prefer the term comic) that needs to be explored, a pretty good idea for a particularly cathartic "comic" story that I should probably write and illustrate just to clear my head, and about 10-20 throwaway ideas that I could probably develop further if I could sit and think about them.

Basically, I'm so overloaded with ideas and projects that "could be," that I'm having intense problems making one of them be the one that is (say that 3 times fast).

So instead, I dick around on the internet. Huzzah.

In the interest of full disclosure, I added a period at the end of that lusty "Huzzah."

In the fuller interest of further disclosure: I never accomplished any of the things I listed there. But I've got a whole new list of things I ain't never done did yet to tackle at this point.

Still make plenty of time for dicking around on the internet, though.

The nearly illegible artwork on this entry (click to actually see it - apologize for the shitty color job - it was rushed, and my trial period on photoshop expired) has absolutely nothing to do with any of the projects listed in any way shape or form, and is only up to confuse people. You're welcome.