Thursday, March 27, 2008

Mandatory Addendum: Kvetching

How the hell could I write a Miscellany and not bitch about something? I must be slipping from lack of practice. Here's a couple of whinges for you, just so you feel complete:

Bitch the First

Monday morning, I realized I lost my CTA farecard, which means I have to use cash to ride the bus to and from work until my replacement card is mailed to me. That's annoying, but I'm not going to bitch about that in a blog (indeed, I haven't until today).

The weather outside is currently a "wintry mix" of sleet and snow. This is Chicago, so expecting it to warm up just because it's spring is asinine, so I won't bitch.

This is where the addition of straws gave my personal metaphorical camel a bulging disc: I have to transfer on my way home. Because I'm not made of money, I decide to walk from my job to Michigan Avenue (about a 10 minute jaunt, and not that unpleasant on most days - the bus ride takes all of 2-3 minutes without traffic). A ten minute jaunt through "wintry mix" (which is not as pleasant as it sounds - I imagine some sort of Chex mix with dried cranberries or something) by the lake in Chicago is roughly akin to spending 16 days in Dante's Third Circle of Hell. Especially when all you're wearing for warmth is a cable knit sweater (yeah, I look like the Old Spice Guy) and a light corduroy jacket.

Bitch the Second

So, I make it home in one piece, and upon entering the door, IMMEDIATELY smell piss. Sparky looks guilty. I do a slow burn. Then I look over and see it's on the "puppy pad." Sweet. No biggie, I'll just throw that out and---

Oh for crying out loud, Sparky.

He got about half of it on the pad. The rest? On the surprisingly hard to clean linoleum.

Welcome home, Jon.

Well, I should go...I now have to clean a chincilla and rabbit hutch. I leave you with the question rattling around in my head like a BB in a coffee can:

At what point did my life actually start revolving around the waste of small mammals?

EDIT: I just realized I totally pissed and moaned about the Carbon/Silicon show in the earlier blog, thus rendering the central premise of this blog a lie. Oh well, what are you gonna do, huh?

A Slog Miscellany

Time to fire up the old "Back From Indefinite Hiatus" tag, as I'm ready and raring to go with another exciting installment of The Slog (now with 50% less Adam Ant references1).

Today, I thought I'd give a miscellany of random Slogger thoughts, as I am kind of burnt out from Attempting to Make More Money Than I Do Now. Basically, I am in my 30s. Actually, literally, I am in my 30s. And I am tired of living paycheck to paycheck. If that means growing up and selling out, then so be it, but my Spring Resolution2 is to improve my financial situation to the point that I can actually afford to purchase the occasional David Bowie CD3 or Jack Kirby Omnibus4 without worrying about Not Having Groceries For Five Days.

So, I'm throwing myself into a job hunt. And I'm looking for one that will actually last. It would be a plus if I actually could find one doing something I belived in.5 So I'm going to shed my 20-something slacker veneer for the glossy undercoating of a Determined and Successful Member of Society Who Happens To Be Over Thirty. I'll still be the same lovable bum that I've always been. Just not on the clock.6

Anyway, on to The Random:


The Chicago Cubs are doing their damnedest to keep me from getting excited about what has the potential, at least on paper, to be The Best Chicago National League Team in my Lifetime.7 As detailed elsewhere by people better at writing about the Cubs than I'll ever be, their bench has the potential to break my heart on any given day. Other than, of course, Daryle Ward, who is made entirely of pure concentrated good (like Dick Miller). He's like the McRib in human form8


I spent my entire lunch break sitting alone at a conference table with a co-worker's Giant Birthday Cookie9 and a plastic knife sitting in front of me. Long story short: I will need to buy new work pants this week.

Impulse control is overrated.


I am officially tired of the cliched storytelling trope (especially in comic books) of "the vampire that hunts other vampires." It's been done. What I'd like to see is a Frankenstein that hunts other Frankensteins.10

On the moon.


I've heard a few clean limericks in my day, but I've never read a dirty haiku.


I was really looking forward to seeing Carbon/Silicon on Monday, but the show was cancelled. I didn't cry over it, but I was really annoyed for some time. Still waiting for the theiving swine at ticketmaster to refund my money for that. It takes them SEVEN TO TEN days to do this, and they have the nerve to make their processing fee non-refundable? If I can transfer funds from savings to checking in less than 30 seconds at my bank, you'd think they could pay me back for providing me with ABSOLUTELY NOTHING without my having to wait practically a fortnight.


I received a letter for Oprah Winfrey (or, more specifically "Ms. Oprah") today at work. The false rumor that she lives in the building where I work at has apparently made it all the way to Mississippi. I returned it to sender.11 It was labelled "Open, Very Important" and "Open as soon as possible." I sure hope it wasn't Ms. Oprah's prescription or anything. Because that would be unfortunate.


Thank you for stopping by The Slog.

  1. Not counting this one.
  2. Not just for New Years anymore.
  3. Heathen would be nice to have.
  4. I don't have ANY Fourth World stuff now, for those people planning for my 32nd birthday (June 5th). I'm just saying.
  5. Although, for the right salary, I'll learn to believe in anything. Except cilantro. Never cilantro.
  6. Unless someone wants to pay me in the high five figures to do this for a living (on the off chance an eccentric billionaire reads this).
  7. Not saying much. Sort of like being the Funniest Wayans Brother or the Most Sober Pogue.
  8. In more ways than one (ZING! Daryle Ward, you've been Slogged!TM).
  9. Save your money and get me Kirby, folks. Just saying...
  10. I know, Frankenstein's the Doctor, not the Monster. Pointing it out doesn't make you any smarter, pal.
  11. I thought about opening it and reading it, but that's not how I roll.

Friday, March 21, 2008

You gonna cry now? Huh? Gonna cry?

There are certain things a man isn't supposed to do. Crying is high on the list.

There have traditionally been only a few circumstances where men (or even boys) can cry. And all of them should be limited to a single, significant tear:
  • When drinking and thinking about your late father, who never told you he loved you
  • When a sports legend playing for your team retires, especially if it's due to illness1
  • When you have to shoot your beloved dog because he has rabies
  • When you see someone litter on the highway2
Of course over the last few decades, as we as a culture have grown "Sensitive," the list has expanded greatly to include such notable reasons as:
  • Watching "Field of Dreams"3
  • Attending some sort of Wilderness Retreat where you get in touch with your Inner Man
  • Couples therapy
  • Getting eliminated on Project Runway
  • ...and many more.
And thank goodness. For most of my life, I have been a pretty soft touch. And I have some overactive tear ducts. I'm easily emotionally manipulated by movies that I should be cynical enough to laugh at. I even tear up when using baby talk. In fact, cutting more than one onion at a time is a nightmare for me (I used to have to do it in bulk when I worked at a pizzaria. That was hell).

I've gotten used to that fact, and try my damnedest to not be ashamed. But there are a few genres of entertainment that are just plain embarassing to cry over. And I have cried over them. More than once. In fact there are certain things that ALWAYS make me cry. Some of them make me cry just thinking about them.

So, without further ado, and with no further justification, I bring you:

The Top Things That Always Make Me Cry Inappropriately, By Genre

Pop Song
"Veronica," by Elvis Costello
I know music is a powerful emotional force, but c'mon! This song is so upbeat I'm not surprised Costello had been working with McCartney on this album. Still, it's about his beloved grandmother's final years. Every time I get to the point where EC says:
But she always had a carefree mind of her own
with a devilish look in her eye
saying you can call me anything you like
but my name is Veronica
I just lose it. Comically. And pathetically.

"Silver and Gold" by Joe Strummer & the Mescaleros.
Waterworks. The whole song saddens me in context, as it is a meditation on all the things the singer wants to do before he gets too old. Sung by a man who died suddenly about a year after it was recorded. Man, that's a bummer. That's like 10 bummers. The last song on his last album. Specifically the bit after the song ends when he says. "That's a take." Again: waterworks.

For a while, this song was playing every time I came into the local Chipotle. Nothing like stifling tears at your local high-end Mexican fast food joint to brighten up your evening.

Animated Television

The Simpsons
Specifically the episode where Homer flashes back to the birth of Maggie.4 Remember when Homer has to quit his dream job as a Pin Monkey to come literally crawling back to Mr. Burns after playing his head like a bongo on the way out? That part...doesn't make me cry. But at the end when he uses Maggie's pictures to make the Demotivational Plaque read "Do It For Her?" Oh god...I'm barely keeping it together now. If all I had ever seen of the Simpsons was the last few seasons, I would punch you in the scrotum5 for suggesting I could ever be moved by Homer's devotion.

If you watch this show with anything approaching the degree of fanaticism I do (and, admittedly few do), you already know what I'm talking about. The fabled Dog Episode, "Jurassic Bark."

True story: I have been told not once, but twice, that the person I watched it with would never watch it again. And with good cause. That last time-lapse sequence where--oh God...I can't--just move to the next section...I'll catch up in a minute...No...I'm fine. Just--Just skip ahead...

Superhero Comic Books
Runner Up:
An issue of Justice League America whose number escapes me

Okay. I'm back. And this may be the most embarassing section of all. I mean, if it were Maus, I'd have an excuse. Maus is about the Holocaust, so it's okay to be devastated. But what if it's about Super-Freakin'-Man?

This issue was the finale of The World War III storyline from like a decade ago. I'm not one for giving decent plot recaps, and it's been ages since I've seen it, but Chris Sims6 sums this up well:

Which is why the rest of the Justice League concocts a plot so complex that I can only tell you it involves a giant hamster wheel, the Purple Healing Ray, and the stone heads of Easter Island that temporarily gives every single person on Earth super-powers. And that's when the whole of humanity rises up as one to fight alongside Superman against the massive embodiment of despair and hopelessness, because after all the times that he saved them, how could they not save him when he needed them to?
Okay, the first part is exceptionally silly, but c'mon man: you'd have to be a Man of Stone not to be a little touched by that final part...I mean...right? Right?


Fine. Be that way.

Archetypes make me sob, okay!?!?!



........SPOILER AHEAD7........

The death of the original Nite Owl, Hollis Mason.

After being mistaken for his replacement, the elderly Mason is attacked by gang members at his home. Despite fighting gamely, he is eventually beaten to death with a trophy given to him for his meritorious service. And as cold as that is, the scene is depicted with the panels alternating between a spy, kindly old man being pummeled by degenerate thugs and washed out panels depicting The Nite Owl in his prime, busting up "Ratzis" with a million dollar smile on his face, looking like the stereotypical Perfect Comic Book Hero. It's bone chilling, and one of about a thousand reasons I suspect the movie will be underwhelming. I'm not sure if the scene even comes close to being transferrable.

........OK, YOU CAN READ AGAIN........

And now.................................

The Ultimate Thing That Makes Me Cry:

Sure, I've established that a lot of silly stuff makes me cry, but nothing does quite like:

Gilda Radner.

Oh, how Gilda makes me cry. I remember watching the play "Bunny, Bunny" about a decade ago Off-Broadway. It starred Paula Cale as Gilda, the late Bruno Kirby as her friend, the writer Alan Zweibel, and Firefly's own Alan Tudyk as, well, everyone else. And basically I cried for the entire second act. Pathetically. Blubberingly. I felt hung over afterwards, I was so dehydrated. I have also wept openly during an SNL special when they did a tribute to her.

And, probably most embarassingly, while reading the Sunday comics.

When Bloom County's Opus said "Gilda Radner isn't supposed to end." I think it was the most heart-wrenching thing I've ever seen in a newspaper.


There, admitting this was cathartic. It's good to admit you're a raging pussy sometimes. I hope you've enjoyed yourself at my expense. No if you'll excuse me, I think I have something in my eye...

  1. I am aware that Denis Leary pointed this one out in No Cure For Cancer. It doesn't make it any less true.
  2. This only applies to Native Americans.
  3. Which, of course, is two hours devoted to Never Playing Catch With Daddy.
  4. Ok, I used to remember episode titles. I'd look it up, but if you haven't seen that episode, there is no reason to be reading this: you and I have nothing in common.
  5. Or appropriate subsititute for any women or harem guards reading this.
  6. If you like kicks to the face and/or Jack Kirby half as much as I do, I strongly recommend The Invincible Super Blog
  7. There is a movie being made, after all, so this will probably be in it. God, I hope it isn't botched. Like every other movie connected with Alan Moore.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

MySpace Archive: The End of an Era

For the first time in the history of The MySpace Archive, I am not going to begin with the boilerplate intro. This is not just because this is the last one of these I'll ever do, but also because I just don't feel like looking up an entry to copy-paste it.

Besides, now that I have pictures of New Romantics, I've got sevens of readers from Developing Nations,1 so I need not explain myself anymore.

So this was my response to learning that roughly 50% of my DNA found my MySpace blog while apparently engaging in self-research. There were footnotes in the original,2 so I have italicized all of my Special Edition Commentary...and hey, for a lark, I will put them in Arial, that most delicate of fonts.
[Originally posted on Tuesday, January 22, 2008]

So, I have a new reader...

Sorry. No 80s update. Not yet.3

I just had to welcome my blog's newest reader:

Hi, Dad!

Apparently, someone was searching for himself on Google, and my MySpace page was the number three best match. No worries, Dad. We all do that. Some redheaded geek at Purdue4 is all over my name's searches, so I feel your pain.

You should have done an image search for your name, man. They're a lot more fun. This guy pops up loud and clear:

Figure 1: David Wolter

I had that hairstyle in 1994, so I can only assume this is a picture of a German guy from 2007. Eep.

Anywhoo, Dad, I suspect you're worried since my last blog mentioned I might write about "my shitty childhood."5 Or at the very least Al Davis's ragtag team of roided up cheat-monkeys. Maybe there's some apprehension that I might air out some long-buried grievances or blurt out something unseemly.

Nothing could be further from my goal. Which is, of course, to spew out some random gibberish about some 80s movie in a pseudointellectual manner, toss in some photos and footnotes,6 leave in a few typoes so my "friends"7 can "gently" correct9 me, and then make some tenuous claim about how it influenced my psyche. Which is what 90% of the blogosphere10 is about.

Anyway, I save all of my genuine trauma and pain for where it belongs: the bar.

So rest assured, this is just simple, good natured idiocy. The kind you've come to accept from Number 1 Son. No malice will you encounter here.

Up next: the thrilling conclusion to The Dark Underbelly of the 80s - The Goonies, or How My Dad Totally Ruined My Life.

There, that wasn't so bad, was it? Admittedly it wasn't so good either.

At any rate, I have heard nothing else from my Dad about either the blog or The Slog. If you're reading this, Dad: I love you. I swear those Christmas gifts are coming soon. At least, as soon as I can finish that damn Goonies post.

  1. Canada counts as a "Developing Nation," right?
  2. Big surpise, huh?
  3. Possibly not ever. We'll see, Data fans. We'll see...
  4. If you are that geek, and stumbled on this site while googling yourself, well...sorry. There can be only one.
  5. Well, my last "MySpace Archive." Obviously my last blog was more concerned with making a lame "Ruptured Chiklis" joke.
  6. Like this.
  7. By friends, I mean whatever random porn spammers have stumbled upon this page.8
  8. That really only applies to MySpace. Here, I get people from the Hinterlands searching for "slog in rabbit urine," "Armenian Genocide," and the ever popular "midge ure breathe blogspot."
  9. Blog pedantism is one of the few growth industries under the Bush adminstration
  10. Don't worry, Dad, it's a made up word. Just roll with it. I did.11
  11. Says the guy who used the term "slogosphere" yesterday. God, I'm an ass.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

My Back, addendum.

Your're only as old as you feel.

I'm pretty sure this little piece of homespun crap is usually designed to help the elderly face their impending doom with a little dignity. But there's a flip side to this.

Today, I checked out a key to an 84-year-old contractor.

Who could probably have beaten me in a footrace.

Damn this ruptured Chiklis!

Oh, and Cletus J.: I added the offended numeral below.

How My Back Ruined My FOUR Day Weekend

Or, Even I Can't Blame the Dog For This One1

Greetings from the Slogosphere! Though I have never yet gotten to the point of writing The Slog Manifesto, there is a reason for this blog's title. And it's hints are in the definitions on the corner of the page, and how they relate direct to My Sad Little Life.

Even barring the surprisingly common occurrance of Unauthorized Canine Fecal Matter in my apartment,2 I am not known as either
  • A particularly lucky person
  • A particularly level-headed3 person when my luck is bad
In other words, bad shit4 happens me to a lot, and I like to complain about it.

I suppose I should "man up" and take charge of my own destiny. But no. In the case of my back, I think it's entirely fair to whine and moan like an 11-year-old that's just been told she can't get tickets to see Hannah Montana.5

As eagle-eyed Slogophiles might well be aware, I am 31 years of age. When I was about 26 or so6, I developed sciatica. Your mid-to-late-twenties is always a fantastic time to develop a lower back problem. Because, since youth is wasted on the young, why not just take it away from them, and give them a disorder that makes them feel like they're 78 years old?

Honestly, "sciatica" sounds like something your Granpappy complained about just before Mom and Dad made the so-called "tough decision" to ship him to some raisin ranch with a name like Sandpiper Estates or Pleasant Hill Cove. Maybe we could come up with a more "youth-oriented" or "Xtreme" name for it? Or name it after someone kinda cool? I'd much rather tell people I had "David Cross Syndrome" or "a Bulging Chiklis."

Where was I? Oh yeah.


I has it.

Anyway, my sciatica has been an on-again, off-again phenomenon since then. Mostly off, as one of my Top Three Deadly Sins to commit is Sloth,7 so it's usually easy for me to follow doctor's orders and lay off lifting more than 20 pounds at a time. However, there comes a time in a man's life when he's sick of paying 108 bucks a month to store his excess crap. So Teh Aly-Baerz8 and I went on a trip to Public Storage this weekend, and sorted through the Lion's Share of Wolter's Library.

Other facts about me that I could share right now:
  • I am a compulsive book reader
  • I am a compulsive book buyer
  • I am a compulsive book hoarder
  • This makes me a jackass
So, I had to sort through roughly 700 pounds of Assorted Printed Material, deciding what to keep and what to give away to Goodwill. I managed to actually give away something like two boxes worth, which is a serious victory in My War on My Compulsions.9 However, the specific gravity of paper is high. Oh, so very high.

Before anyone says anything: I (mostly) lifted with my legs, I swear. The problem with that? Oh, the next day, when my legs were killing me and we had to move the boxes into our apartment. Because I then favored my legs. At the expense of...well, I think I've spelled that out enough.

Anyway, yesterday, I couldn't walk, and wasted some Paid Time Off to rest it off. I basically spent the whole day in or around the bed, pestering La Alejandra del Hombre Bueno and complaining. I was moderately better this morning, so I decided to cut off what was rapidly becoming The Worst Unplanned Vacation in History. And since you can't get heroin over the counter, in order to rejoin the work11 force I had to take (to paraphrase Bill Hicks paraphrasing someone else) An Heroic Dose of ibuprofen this morning.

Interesting fact about ibuprofen: it's not a miracle pill.

So, the Slog Status Report for March 18th, 2008:
  • I am in excruciating pain
  • It is largely my own damn fault
  • I have tried and failed to blame The Spark
  • In retaliation, he will no doubt crap on something I love while I am at work
  • I will be powerless to clean it up, as it took me over 5 minutes to put on a shoe yesterday.
Hope you liked this bitter, largely unfunny rant about My Defective Body. Next one will be less self-centered and have more Synthpop Stars and Mogwai Feeding Tips.

  1. But Lord how I tried. I really did.
  2. Located in stately Slog Towers ("You don't have to be Section 8 to live here, but it helps.")
  3. I was going to put sanguine, but I suddenly remembered that I can't remember if sanguine means calm or belligerent. If only I had some way to look up words and their meanings. Oh well, back to writing about myself on the internet.
  4. I still can't believe he shat the bed. THE BED!!!
  5. I'm not sure who this is. But I'm following the time-honored old-guy tradition of making an attempt to appeal to the youth demographic ('cause kids love reading blogs where 30-somethings rant about how much Citizen Kane could have been improved by adding a scene with a young Bea Arthur and a Talking Rhino singing a show tune [and you KNOW it would have been]. Or at least they do when you mention some pop star and/or actress they like).
  6. It might have been 27. I honestly can't remember much that happened in my life before last Tuesday or so. Every now and then I have to consult this blog just to remember what I'm mad at lately.
  7. The other two? Gluttony and Wrath. I would have put in Lust, but honestly, thinking of Lust just makes me commit either Envy or Pride, depending on my current status. And Greed is pretty awesome as well. Really, all of the Deadly Sins are pretty good. But I try to stick with my Top Three for most occassions.
  8. See my new line of "Loljew" merchandise, soon to be available at a cafepress store near you.
  9. Up next: I tackle My Irritating Need To Put Footnotes In Blog Entries10
  10. And after that? Randomly Capitalized Terms.
  11. I admittedly use that term loosely (see "Seven Deadly Sins, My Top Three" above)

Sunday, March 16, 2008

How My Dog...Addendum

So, yeah. I figured that post was the last I'd need to make.

But this afternoon, Sparky shat the bed.

Not metaphorically, like he inherited some baserunners and gave up the winning run.


He. Shat. The. Bed.

That is all.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

How My Dog Has Already Ruined My Three Day Weekend

Howdy, folks looking for pictures of the lead singer of Dead or Alive. I've decided to interrupt my long, slow descent into madness to spend 5 minutes talking about my night:

I'm taking tomorrow off from work to spend a delightful day with the official Slog Girlfriend,1 Alexandra J. Bear, Esq. Which makes this my Friday, sort of. But I've got less exciting plans than usual today, mostly consisting of getting laundry done, and cleaning the floor of our "apartment."2 I'm doing this solo tonight, because Ali has a special dinner planned with her family, deferred all the way from last Valentines. Somewhere out there, she is dressed to the nines, beautiful, and having fun. I am so glad for her that she was not here.

The floor needs cleaning largely because there are seven mammals living here.3 Two (our rats, Dante and Wilson) are safely housed in an aquarium. Two (our Rabbit, Blue and Chinchilla, McGreevey) are in hutches that are roughly the size of my old Lincoln Square "apartment."4 These hutches have cage gates, enabling both Rabbit and Chinchilla to hurl bedding, hay, food pellets, and feces upwards of 4 feet away from their homes. 5 Two are humans; our feces is usually confined to the proper receptacle.

The final mammal is our Class Five Free Floating Vapor,6 Sparky. The Spark is...well, he's my dog. I love him. He is not 100% house-trained. But he tries. Lord how he tries.

Anywhoo, after a particularly frustrating day and a particularly frustrating commute, I finally get home. I'm delighted to see fresh urine and feces7 on the puppy pad.8 Good dog, Sparky! Here's a treat! I throw out the pad.

So, I sit down to catch my breath for a second. After about 4-5 minutes of checking email, I take a trip to the restroom. Just as I get out, my brother calls me to ask a question about which season of Arrested Development he watched when he visited me a while back. We chat for 2-3 minutes, while I try to remember the answer (I think it's one, but I'm not sure). I'm a pacer, so I've trotted all over the house. In mid-conversation, I start to smell something. Is, can't be...he just went on the pad. I must smell the garbage. Better take the bag...

Oh holy crap. Gotta go, Jarrod.

The dog, all seven-point-two pounds of him, has crapped...


I mean...seriously, in five distinct places.

This was not here before my bathroom trip. But it is now.

And that isn't even counting where I STEPPED IN IT AND TRACKED IT ALL OVER THE ROOM.

My lazy Thursday night was transformed to a Lovecraftian Scene of Canine Fecal Horror.9 And, of course, Sparky picks now to try to run around the house. AUUUUGH!

I chase him back to the bed, whereupon he yelps like I'm beating him, even though I'm standing 10 feet away. That little fucker is trying to make the neighbors think I'm abusing him. Jokes on him, though. I live next to transplanted trailer trash. Probably couldn't hear us over the sound of beating his trashy, boozed up wife.

So, I spend roughly 25 minutes on my hands and knees scrubbing Dog Waste out of out Increasingly Worthless Carpet. I was hoping to be done with laundry by now, but it's still in the dryer. The Spark? Asleep. We made up. He licked my face with his oyster breath and I swore that I would still feed him tomorrow.

Anyway, I should wrap up this blog. I just needed to vent. I have about 15 minutes left on the laundry, and that's probably just enough time to see if Dr. Scotch can stop by and do some lab work.


'Nuff Said.

  1. Okay, that sounds horrifying. But Slog Co-Habitator is worse, and Mrs. Slog is a little premature.
  2. I am required by law to put quotes around this, as "broom closet" would be more accurate.
  3. That I know of.
  4. I am required by law to put quotes around this, as "Vietnamese POW Tiger Cage" would be more accurate.
  5. Or, halfway across the "apartment."
  6. A real nasty one, too.
  7. Did I REALLY just say "delighted to see fresh urine and feces?" Let me check. Oh God. I did. Pray for me.
  8. Puppy is a misnomer. The Spark is actually almost four. He is middle aged. And he still pisses on the floor. I'm 31, and it's probably been 2-3 years since I pissed on my carpet.
  9. Technically, this is probably closer to Kafkaesque, but I have the label, and I'm gonna use it.

The Whole World Loves Adam Ant, Damn It!

Man, this site's getting image search hits from all over the world just because I put a photo of Gozer the Destructor (in the form of Adam Ant, circa 1981) in one of my posts. Who knew the demand was so high? Apparently, Southeast Asia and large swaths of Africa long for photos of the leaders of the New Romantic movement.

So, in a shameless attempt to boost my hit count (and become The Next Big Thing in Malaysia), here you go, Third World. A trip down Synthpop Memory Lane:

First up is the ever stylish Midge Ure and his fabulous moustache. Ultravox is the probably the first band to have a hit on the pop charts with a lead singer that looks like a maître d' in a Peter Sellers comedy.

"Would sir care to see the wine list?"

Who doesn't love Spandau Ballet? Apparently their hairdresser. Who was probably the guy from Flock of Seagulls. This actually looks disturbingly like a yearbook photo.


Remember Japan? I'm sure anyone searching from Manchuria does!1 Trivia: judging by this photo, a cane-brandishing Melanie Griffith joined the band in 1980.

A Candid Moment on the set of Working Girl

What the hell happened to Boy George? Seriously. What. The. Hell? I'm hoping someone in Senegal wants to know.

I DEFY you to name everything wrong with this picture.

Okay, Duran Duran. I'm not going to make fun of Duran Duran. Their name comes from a softcore sci-fi skin flick starring Jane Fonda. Which, conceptionally speaking, rules. Also, two words: Seven. Andtheraggedtiger.2 The only real downside is, thanks to A View To A Kill, they occasionally make the image of Roger Moore schtupping Grace Jones pop into my head...3

"Sorry about that, Wolter"

Also, I have recently become aware of a little known requirement by if you have a blog, and you mention baseball, you must post a picture of Alyssa Milano in her cutesy little Dodger gear at least once a year. So this is as good a place as any:

There. Are you satisfied, Blogger?

Which reminds me, I have a lot of issues with the show "Charmed," which I may4 address here at a later date. Or in therapy.

  1. Everybody loves a good relatively obscure War Atrocity joke! Right, guys? Next entry, I'll be referencing the Armenian Genocide under Ottoman Rule!
  2. Sorry. I know. I cheated. It's technically one word and a number.
  3. Yeah. I know. It probably wasn't fair for me to mention that. I apologize for putting that image in your mind.
  4. I hate to make any promises, as I already feel like I've let down every single fan of The Goonies.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Search logs.

I've seen a few other blogs comment on the paths people have used to find them. This is my contribution to the tradition. The only search query that ever ended up here, to date:
"Mrs. Deagle" Cats
This is it. If anyone used this to find me; congratulations. I love you.

EDIT: I just learned the woman who played Mrs. Deagle was Polly Holliday. Flo from Alice.

Kiss My Grits, Mogwai!

Friday, March 7, 2008

Home VCR Repair - A Journey in Pictures

The setup: On Thursday night, Ali and I watched a really boring movie made in England that some people in France love, which is about as multicultural as this McRib lover ever gets. It was a requirement for one of her classes at her acting conservatory. It seems to be fairly popular, but I fell asleep twice during it. Let's just say it was no Ghostbusters and leave it at that.

Anywhoo, we actually had to dust off the VCR for this, as Ali had to borrow a copy from someone else who borrowed it from the Public Library. And on Friday morning, when Ali attempted to eject the tape, the VCR wouldn't even power up long enough to do so. I secretly suspect it was because the movie was so boring it put the machine into a coma, but I'm no expert.

Well, Ali was all disturbed, because she is both:
  1. A decent person who hates to let a friend down by not returning something she borrowed,
  2. A cheap person that doesn't want to give a red cent to no damn liberry,
...I actually had something like this happen about twelve years ago, and successfully disassembled the machine to remove the tape, so I turned all Alpha Male and said "Don't worry your pretty little head, honey. I'll fix it after work." Okay, I didn't literally say that, but I'm sure I wasn't much less condescending.

I got about as far as removing the top and faceplate before realizing this was going to be a longer journey than I remembered. So I decided to record it for posterity, so Ali could bask in my victory when she got home from work.

This is the project: remove Secrets & Lies from its Outdated Media Playing Prison.

This is The Only Tool I'll Need (note stoic determination):

To work!

Current collection of screws removed:

And how much has changed? Not enough to take a new picture, that's for damn sure:

Oh! Here! A screw I missed! That should speed things along.

Don't fuck with me, screws. This fucker's magnetized.

Net change after that dramatic removal:


Okay...Okay...Calm down, Wolter. You just need to come at this from another angle. Maybe you need more than a screwdriver after all. You need an all-purpose Solution To Life's Problems...but what could that be...?


Oh yeah!

How silly of me not to consult Dr. Scotch.

What's that, Dr. Scotch? You want me to take that screw out? Ok.

Well that accomplished...nothing.

I can't stay mad at you, Scotch. Let's check on our progress.

Screws removed?

Okay...let me try a few more.

Good. Something came off. That's satisfying. Just wish I knew what it was for. Oh well. Onwards and upwards...

Oh crap, the tape is still wound around the head. Fantastic.

This requires some deep thought.

And a consultation...

Okay, I just need to ease that little piece slightly over to return the tape to the hou--


It took surprisingly little pressure to snap this little guy off.

Time to regroup. What the hell do I do now? I kind of suspect that piece is necessary for the continued operation of this particular device. I suppose I should meditate on my options.

Oh, that's right!


Won't be needing this!

Or this!

Thanks for the assist, Dr. Scotch. This is a breakthrough moment, and should be savored.



Gloria! In Excelsis Barbaria!

Hosanna in Excelsis!

Final score: Wolter 1, VCR 0

Unfortunately, it was a Pyrrhic victory, as Dr. Scotch was a casualty of war. But he will be remembered for his bravery, his sagacity, and his smooth finish.

The final outcome:

If anyone needs me to repair any other electronic devices, I am available. As is my new assistant, Nurse Bourbon.

MySpace Archive: On Procrastination

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 piece was meant to remind people that one day, in some way, I would actually finish that whole 80s series that had ones of readers clamoring for more. It's only been two months since I posted this one back there, and I have high hopes that maybe I will actually write about this in the next 1-3,476 days.

I suppose I could just knuckle down, do a quick image search on Google, and throw together some half-baked commentary on the Goonies, but to be honest, a casual rewatching of Goonies one Saturday afternoon last spring started this whole solipsistic odyssey. I have to do right by Mikey, Chunk, Sloth, Brand & Co. But not Mouth. Never Mouth.

This originally had numerous comments in parenthesis interspersed throughout. I have changed them to footnotes, as I cranked this puppy out in like 2 minutes a couple of months ago, with very minimal editing, and was too lazy to format it. I have rectified this.

The upshot of this is that now you have to do a shit-ton of scrolling just to find out I'm lazy.

There. I've given you no need to read this. See you after the post.

[Originally posted on Thursday, January 17, 2008]

Teaser trailer for my long delayed blog piece

Okay, teaser trailer is a misleading term. I'm not showing you highlights for my upcoming blogstrosity, The Dark Underbelly of the 80s, Part 3.1

The real purpose2 is to let all 3.14159etc of you that read3 this blog4 that I haven't forgotten this chilling expose of my psyche as reflected through 80s movies.5 Believe it6 or not,7 I am planning8 to actually finish this soon.9

This next one is going to be a tough one, since it will dredge up some repressed memories. Either about my shitty childhood or possibly about the Oakland Raiders.

Only time will tell.

As anyone who knows me would say, "That guy owes me 50 bucks!"

Wait. That's not what I meant. Let me start over.

As anyone who knows me would say, "Wolter puts off everything he does. EVERYTHING!" This composite person would then go on to mention that I owe him/her 50 bucks. Hopefully, he/she will then punch a wall in frustration, cause that would be so punk, man.

It's not that I don't like to accomplish things. Really it's not. I love the feeling of Getting Something Done. I just love the feeling of Doing Anything Other Than What I Should Be Doing a little more. Why write a paper when you could play Tetris for 3 hours? Why go grocery shopping when you could be reading a perfectly good biography of John C. Calhoun? Why do...oh, I don't know...your job...when you could write a blog about how you really should be doing your job. And then comment on it (how Meta).

Anyway, there are only two more posts left in the MySpace Blog Archive (Huzzah!). Technically one, as the last post is just a post telling people that there are posts from there over here. I probably won't move that over, as the Meta-quotient on that commentary would cause The-Slog to collapse into a Neutron Star.

  1. Or, as I have taken to calling it, Chinese Democracy II: The Crap-ening.
  2. There is no real purpose.
  3. Have read in the past.
  4. Pathetic time waster.
  5. Random crap I throw together at the last minute.
  6. Don't.
  7. Probably wise.
  8. ...Am fooling myself.
  9. ....By February 29th, 2012 [Dude, seriously. Am I obsessed with that year or what? It's mentioned in like 4 of my posts. I should start a "2012" label. Eh...maybe later]

I should probably admit at this point that all of those footnotes were put in largely to annoy the reader (you). The Slog: alienating practically non-existent readers since,

Thursday, March 6, 2008

About Me, Addendum #2

So, a coworker and I were discussing Ghostbusters earlier today (big surprise, huh?), and he asked me what form I would want my Destroyer to take.

I thought about this for less than three seconds, and promptly replied:

"Adam Ant."

Adam. Ant.

Less. Than. Three. Seconds.

I guess it beats a large and moving Torg or giant Slor. But not by enough.

MySpace Archive: In Which Wolter is Disturbed

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.

Nothing wacky today. In fact, I'm not going to even attempt to be funny about this.

The following is something that people I know find either disturbing or hilarious. For me, I was initially disturbed at this, then amused. Then I thought about it, and it is indeed disturbing.

[Originally posted on Saturday, June 23, 2007]


The following letter was delivered to my office last week. It was addressed to the building, not anyone in particular. It was handwritten in a barely legible scrawl. I'm reproducing it in its entirity to the best of my abilities. Because I don't want to be the only one who was disturbed:

Dear Friend,

God is great, God is good, God is love and God forgives. All of us are guilty guilty of something & none is perfect but the father. people think God is the harsh judge who sits high and look low and out to get us but nothing could be farther from the truth. God is so harsh that he sent the Black panther gang by me after they repented.

We are living in the period of the first resurrection. people who have died are coming back. God the father, satan the Antichrist, demons demons and aliens from other planets are here on earth with us. In Moses day when problems were too hard for his workers helpers they took them to moses.

This time the Judges are God and me and I can solve most cases but when it comes to aliens that I don't understand and woman women sticking sticks up my sons rectum and giving him a shot in the penis, I leave in the hands of God. My mother was married to John the Baptist of the Bible. she needed a doctor in child birth and he didn't get her one killing killing her and leaving me with the comforts of a mother and he could get to me. He has tried to kill me since I was a baby and still at it.

John the Baptist is a demonic trick from hell who can be woman, man, or any nationality he chooses instantly. He can cause precision pregnacy pregnacy and has over a 170 babies. He change and people don't know who he is.

He is John Kennedy, Adolf Hitler, prince Charles, Richard Daley, Matt Hale, Janet Jackson, a few. The Jesus Jesus Christ of the Bible is the Antichrist. A priest got Mary pregnant and the lie lie went down in history that God did it. He did not die for our sins, he was crucifed crucified for telling the lie that he was the son of God. I am the real Christ. God permitted slavery so I could be born born in America. Stop lying, stealing, swearing, drugs, gambling, murder, robbery, sex out side of marriage, cheating, oral and rectal sex, smoking, drinking, repent, ask God to forgive you and do them no more. Read the Bible, pray, be Baptized and go to the church of your choice. The Bible say ye must be born a gain.

They took my children away from me to make them do oral sex on people so they could kill them. But the children are mine and no one can press charges just God and me, and we only press charges against the ones who took them.

Let me tell you a little about Congress these days. The sick Edward Kennedy posed as a doctor and examened me with a bottle washer and had me bleeding. He and a group put my brother under a toilet, took laxatives and let their bowels move on him. I was not permitted to go out all day once because Edward was waiting to throw feces on me. He has little boys doing oral sex in tuxedos while he Jack off in
[head?] at [cakes?]. Wait until I tell you the whole story in a book later. The Lord God planted a garden in Eden Eden – (Eaton John the Baptist named him self). The Lord God placed the man in the garden of Eden to tend and care for it. A river flowed from the land of Eden where gold is found. I found I found the gold at age 9. (Genesis 2-8, 10, 15).

John the Baptist worked for the Anti Christ taking care of his plantation making him Adam and the Antichrist God. Since we are living in the period of the first resurrection and the final eternal Judgment, creation started and ends with me.
may God Bless you.

yours truly
[Name withheld]

One thing is certain. This is definitely not a case of Sincere Irony.TM But it is sincere.

I wonder about this woman (it was signed with a woman's name). I hope she has someone watching out for her.

I'm almost to the end of my MySpace archiving. I didn't post again on there for almost seven months. And then, it was only to comment on the fact that I hadn't posted for a while. I will be commenting on that commentary soon.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

MySpace Archive: Filler, Plain, and Simple

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 one was sheer filler, just because I was a little bored. It's not particularly clever, it's only mildly amusing, and I'm only really including it here because I am a completist.1

With that kind of a lead-in, how can you resist reading this fine slice of slacktastical Sloggery?

Note: All footnotes are new.

[Originally posted on Wednesday, May 23, 2007]

Interlude: Life lessons

Okay, here's a brief palate cleanser before I tackle the trickiest of the 80s movies beginning with G.3

Over the past 7 years or so, I have largely worked in an office environment. That means annoying, cloying, something-else-that-ends-in-"oying" group emails with life lessons that can be learned from simple and pointless activities. The grandaddy of these is of course that All I Ever Needed To Know I Learned In Kindergarten (or whatever) series. Well, kindergarten is great and all that (I sure as hell miss having naps and writing with enormous pencils), but it still takes 36 whole weeks of your life away. Screw that. You can get the same4 life lessons for much less of an investment of your time, by following my "soon to be an inspirational poster with a kitten, an eagle, or some damn thing" inspirational program:


You have to start somewhere*No one is going to explain it for you; you have to figure the rules out as you go along*Your "slam-dunk" perfect assumptions are not always correct*Sometimes you just have to go with a hunch*Simple pleasures are sometimes the best, but only if it's the only damn game you can get away with playing at work*Always look over your shoulder—your boss may be watching*Success is far rarer than failure. But you can always start over*The world is out to get you*It's not how well you start, it's if you can finish*Give up now*If you worry too much about how fast you're going, you're twice as likely to fail*"Alt-tab" is your friend*Trust your instincts, but verify them first*You will never accomplish anything if you do nothing but play minesweeper all day
Okay, I wrote that in less than 5 minutes, in between Minesweeper games. Screw Robert Fulghum for making a damn fortune on this schmaltzy crap.
Yeah, so that was pretty much it on this particular entry. I'm sorry you had to deal with my obsessions.7

  1. A note on geeks and completism: There is something in the obsessive geek's personality (and for crying out loud, I have links to blogs about comics on my blog - I am a geek) that screams for completism. If I like a music artist, TV show, author, etc., and do not own the entire produced output of albums, episodes, books, et al., a portion of my brain feels, well, incomplete. It will nag at me until my thankfully easily distracted brain2

  2. Oooh! Somthing shiny! Er, I mean, until my thankfully easily distracted brain...well...where was I? Anyway, it's probably not important.

  3. I was so optimistic then. patience gentle reader, it will happen. Oh yes.

  4. Ooh! I remember now! I was talking about a geeky obsession with completism. Which really sucks when you get geekily obsessed with artists like Elvis Costello,5 whose phenomenal early catalogue will eventually trick the obsessive fan into buying North, an album that is so aggressively bland that I don't even feel like finishing th

  5. David Lee Roth, speaking of why music critics like Elvis Costello, was heard to remark waggishly, "because Van Halen is overrated dreck, whereas Elvis has clever lyrics and a sense of musicality."6

  6. Strictly speaking, this is a lie.

  7. One thought about my completist OCD that keeps me up at night: at some point in my life, I will spend my hard earned money on Never Let Me Down, Tonight, or something by Tin Machine. Not because I want to, but because I will eventually exhaust the Bowie catalogue to the point that that's all that's left. Help me.