Yes, you’re on my mind, and yes, I continue to vacillate between hoping you’re dead in a ditch and aren’t.
Social comment n' shit
Man, to think at this same time three weeks ago, I was sitting on a real live deck (not my puny little balcony) in a real live backyard at an undisclosed location in a pair of basketball shorts and a tie-dye while my friends’ hound guarded the perimeter (and when I say “guarded the perimeter, I really mean peeing on everything he hadn’t already peed on twice—prednisone sucks), and now I’m .... not. I got to grill out for my charge and me, and people, I GOT TO TAKE A SHOWER LONGER THAN A SLIGHTLY LONGER WHORE BATH. Do you know how long it had been since I’d done that!?? And my blowdryer didn’t overheat as fast, either. Perhaps there’s something to the whole home ownership thing. Today I spent ... sleeping, which is equally as awesome, really, but also has me on guard because between the sobbing I’d been bitching about all week and need for copious amounts of sleep, the cook at the restaurant better not have gotten me sick, is all I’m saying.
I’ve been instructed by one SBrown that I must tell the story of my first laser hair-removal treatment—no no, not THAT kind of hair because a) NO, and b) the Groupon that allowed me to purchase this
dreamprocedure didn’t cover that business. And anyway, what I went for is, at least to me, much more embarrassing: my face, or more specifically, what I refer to as my “meatbeard,” much to the dismay of my sister, who thinks that’s the grossest descriptor ever, but I (and other people, thankfully) think is hiLARIous.
So like I said, Sbrown wanted to hear all the gories—except there weren’t really any, other than I had to put gauze in my mouth to cover my gums and had to put cotton pads over my eyes beFORE the blonde, fuzzy-bunny, 20-ish year-old aesthetician strapped the solid-metal tanning-booth goggles over my eyes. She then spread ultrasound goo on the area, kicked up the jams to whatever voltage felt like a rubberband snapping, and it was all done in less than five minutes. I’ll go through it five more times, the end. The REAL bitch of it was that I was a mere five minutes from the greatest mall in the world ever (A FREAKING TESLA DEALERSHIP, PEOPLE!), but I had to be back for a finance meeting, so I didn’t get to go. Next time, you’ll have to pull me out of Nordie’s shoe department. Mark my words.
Meanwhile, chatted recently with a familiar character ‘round these parts—because of job crap, she’s asked me not to use her name, but I’m sure you could figure it out if you’re so inclined—and she was telling me about reconnecting with a guy she dated a million years ago. She friends him on fb, they talk for a few days and everything appeared to be fine until one day, when first he was all “Hey, when you going to be on?” and then when she gets on, he hits her with the following:
Then he blocks her as if after that, she’s going to pursue any sort of further contact.
So naturally, that guy deserves ALL of the scorn because WHAT!?? Who the fuck reaches out to someone to tell them they don’t like them!? More than that, though, I’ve come to really not understand what possesses someone to apologize when they don’t really mean it, and by “mean it,” s/he thinks the apology’s enough in and of itself.
Self-indulgent story time, and I’ll even throw it below the fold for y’all:
Long, long ago—like, 14, 15 years ago—I met a chick at this conference temp gig we were working. Nice woman, but we were complete polar opposites and just didn’t have anything in common. Still, she was nice, and she tolerated me, and you can’t have too many nice people who tolerate you around, right? So anyway, we hung out off and on for about three years—mostly because I kept her at bay—and a few months after Dad died (which she drove the hour to come to the wake, I might add), she came to the resort one evening; T was living with me at the time, TOG and I were having issues more than normal, and I had just started to realize the magnanimity of having to deal with Mother without the buffer that was Dad the first 32 years of my life; suffice it to say, I was a dick to her. She may have called once more afterward before deciding (rightfully so) that I wasn’t worthy of her effort.
I’ve always felt bad about the way I treated her (especially since at one point, I’m pretty sure she asked me point-blank if I wanted to hang with her, and I pussed out like a pussy from telling her the truth), and if there was ever someone to whom I should apologize, it’s her. She ALSO deserves someone who wants to put an effort into a real friendship, which I ... don’t, clearly, or I would’ve, so to me, if I don’t really intend to make a situation right full-stop, what difference would my saying “I’m sorry” make? Personally, I don’t believe it would, because them’s just words, man, and they cheap. Could my stance probably have more to do with the fact that I’m not good with letting out people who’ve I let in than it does ... reality, maybe!? You tell me—I’m just kind of thinking out loud, here.
Which leads me to self-indulgent story No. 2: Why I don’t keep grievance lists on people—no, seriously! I really don’t, and you know why? Do y’all remember me telling the story of how Dad kind of got us into a financial disaster and the shady way he kept the ship afloat? Can’t remember if I was specific or not, and the details aren’t important because looking back on it, he did what he had to do,and whatever. If you ask Mother, however, she’ll tell you about horrible it was and blah blah blah like it happened yesterday, and this was 20—yes, 20—years ago, and I know this because she reminds ME about it every month or so. And god forBID you bring up how her brothers—men SHE DOESN’T EVEN LIKE, FERCHRISSAKE—don’t call her to make sure she’s Ok or offer to take her out or bring her food or whatever it is she feels they should be doing for her; THAT you don’t even have to ask, because she talks about that CON.STANT.LY to everyone she possibly can.
That’s ... not me.
Sure, I beef with people, and unless I’m completely at fault, you’ll almost never see me make the first move to patch things up—can’t get rejected if you cut bait first, after all, says the Abandonment Handbook—but once we do, shit’s in the past, man, and I’ve welcomed back people who’ve done really shitty things, as we all know. So when recently, someone I care about told me there were things that bothered me that I hadn’t told him about, I was stunned because I just don’t work that way. I’m still stunned.
I don’t know what else I want to say about that, so if someone can give me some insight, have at it. Oh, and Happy Zombie Jeebus Day or whatever the cool kids are calling it these days.
The other day, our big columnist at the paper, who has an equally big fb presence, threw out to the
wolvesmasses a letter he’d gotten chastising him for giving money that readers donated to him to distribute to needy folks. In it, the person (who actually identified herself later downthread out of ... guilt, I guess?) had this to say about one of the recipients:
I, naturally, couldn’t resist:
To which I was promptly told my comment was “disgusting” and “totally inappropriate,” which I then said was my point because who the hell would deny a struggling mom first of all, but second, it was Jerry’s money to do with as he saw fit. But really, my point—and I did explain this as well—was that here’s a woman who’s chosen to have five children like
And—AND!—if I may continue on this soapbox for a moment, if anyone ever thought leaving charity solely to churches and people’s “voluntary kindness” without any sort of government safety net is the way it should happen, this is exACTly why it can’t: Individuals cannot be relied upon to neither not judge nor be consistent with meeting the needs of so many people, and anyone who says they’d rather be able to help on their own terms rather than ponying up and letting the government make the choice is delusional, at best. A guy with whom I went to high school, for example, was all stiff because he either donated to his church or gave to a needy family over the holidays or some shit, and he’d posted on fb about what a wonderful feeling it gave him to be able to give and “that’s how it should be.”
Well sure, that’s great, Richie, you helped out a family for a day or maybe even a week if you were extra-generous—now how ‘bout the other 51 weeks or 364 days? Who’s going to help then? And what about the other millions of people who need help? Based on the hard-on you got from how nice it felt to give, are you prepared to sustain that level of giving/ecstasy!? Because from what I understand, NO ONE can without benefit of really good drugs, and THEN you end up getting raw and hurty from the exertion, anyway. (Don’t do drugs, kids!) ANYway, I continue to be mystified by this idea many people have that those with money are the answer to everything, because they aren’t, at least not to any degree that eradicates even a little the suffering of the human condition. Let the government take its chunk and deliver it to as many as it feasibly can, and be done with it.
So things have gone on in the what, year and a half that I haven’t been here? Among them are these:
-- The little Gray Ghost passed a month after I last posted, in what had to be the worst way a person who’d never previously put down an animal could’ve experienced. (Stupid vile, hateful local 24-7 clinic I hope spontaneously combusts with every employee in it.) But we now have Hurricane Carol, who’s been a wonderfully kooky addition to the resort.
-- Rube, meanwhile, has been having tummy trouble again and could possibly have lymphoma, but the vet isn’t quite convinced of that, so we’re treating him for IBD first. And that’s what I’m sticking to.
-- Had some great stories, especially the last couple months of 2011. Besides the RCPM gig, there’s been the first gay National Guardsman to reenlist (big ol’ scoop, that one was), the private inauguration of Gary’s first black woman mayor (there was a public one the week after, but I muscled my way in to the first one when the press wasn’t supposed to be there) and the rescue and aftermath of two little boys whose mom was burned to death in a housefire, which wasn’t a scoop but I got some really good angles out of it. We have new overlords at the paper aGAIN, so who knows exactly what that means, but we ALSO have direct deposit finally, so I’ve been a straight-up ballah, what with not overdrawing my account and all. Like, one day I went to get $20 out of my account and discovered I had close to $1,700 left, and I really didn’t know how that happened! It was amazing!
-- After three-plus years of celibacy, sex even happened quite a bit, but let me ask y’all something: When was someone going to tell me that sex with someone with whom you can barely have a cogent conversation is SO MUCH FUN!?? Damn, yo! Now, I pulled some shit in my 20s, but the Summer of Slut/Autumn of Ass had me hearing, “You did NOT!” quite often by the crew. Well yes, yes I did, and with very little regret.
Because it’s me, however, there was someone with whom I’d hoped to see where things went—completely against my better judgment because also remember, it IS me and I’m nothing if not entirely too optimistic for my own good. (True fact: If someone says to you they aren’t with anyone because they haven’t found someone worthy of them yet (emphasis mine), have a hearty, derisive laugh with your friends about it, by all means, but then take it as the warning it inevitably is.) But it happened and, after a long, emotional (also: DRUNK) email exchange at least on my part, it’s done. Of course, as I’m sitting here achy and hoping like fuck I’m not coming down with death, I’m kinda feeling his not being around—the person I’d hoped he was, at any rate. Who he turned out to be? Not so much, and I REALLY hate the disappointment of that.
I’m sure the heifers will remind of whatever I’m forgetting, but for now, Ima take me a Tylenol with codeine and hope I don’t die between now and my shift tomorrow.
It was already published at my favorite music site, but I shall reprint here, because it was just. that. COOL.
Before the utterly gobsmacked throngs started filing out of the bar to mob him, and before he had a chance to absorb what just happened onstage, Brian David Blush sat on the hood of a stranger’s silver Toyota, massaging his forehead as if it would make the night’s events sink in faster.
He was a bit embarrassed, too, or a lot to hear him tell it. Just three and a half hours earlier, Blush wasn’t even sure he’d be allowed in to see his former Refreshments bandmates — Roger Clyne and Paul “P.H.” Naffah, the head and neck of Roger Clyne and the Peacemakers – play at the roadside restaurant just outside Elkhart, Indiana. So to have joined Clyne, Naffah and bassist Nick Scropos on well-loved tune “Nada” from their 1996 breakthrough record, Fizzy Fuzzy Big & Buzzy, was an event for which he was completely unprepared.
“Whatever you say, tell ‘em I was terrible,” Blush said, rather morosely assessing his first time onstage with Clyne since it all went wrong between them.
This was originally supposed to be a combined review of Clyne and the Peacemakers’ July 2nd performance at both the 30th Annual American Music Festival at FitzGerald’s in Berwyn, Illinois, and the band’s subsequent performance at Mr. G’s in Osceola, Indiana on July 27th. Anyone who’s ever seen an RCPM show knows how solid and fun they are, even (especially?) as Clyne tosses back shot after shot of tequila. Well, the band didn’t disappoint either time. Particularly heartening was hearing lead guitarist Jim Dalton come into his own, since 2009 was his first year with the band and he was a bit tentative and stiff with the music. But for Refreshments/RCPM fans, hearing three of the original Refreshments reunited for a short, impromptu jam session in front of the lucky 120 who came to the show is, as Veep Joe Biden might say, “a big f’in deal.”
The backstory’s been told a million times: After Fizzy Fuzzy propelled the Refreshments toward epic stardom, their second album tanked, the band lost its record deal and Blush dove headfirst into his already debilitating heroin and pill habit. He got kicked out of the band, and then he sold the Refreshments’ entire catalog – which includes the theme of long-running show King of the Hill — for $2,500 out of desperation. Bad feelings, naturally, ensued; Blush overdosed, then spent time in jail and went through rehab before landing in jail again and finally getting himself off the junk. He now resides in the South Bend area and plays in various bands.<
Which leads the story to July 27th: Blush’s buddy and bandmate, Mike Vance, heard RCPM was playing Mr. G’s and asked Blush if he wanted to go. It’s not that he didn’t, but after more than a decade of anger and resentment, he didn’t know how his presence would be received. Thanks to the Indiana Department of Motor Vehicles, he almost didn’t get to find out; now that Indiana mails residents their licenses and other IDs, Blush didn’t have his new license yet, and the bouncer didn’t accept the photocopy the DMV provided.
Defeated, Blush started walking away when he saw Naffah outside the RCPM tour bus. He walked up, and the unexpected happened: Naffah met him with open arms, and the guys took care of his entry issues as only good friends would.
“They snuck me in through the back door,” Blush said.
Blush sat on the left side of the stage, donning shades and smiling the whole time, even firing up a lighter every so often in homage to his favorite songs. Being comfortable in RCPM’s air space was all he needed, really, but then Clyne came out for the encore and called on Blush to accompany him on “Nada.”
He was overwhelmed from start to long after finish. While neither a perfect version of the introspective song or the final encore, no one dared take away from his elation at playing with old friends.
“Roger Clyne and P.H. Naffah, I came up with them. We were lucky enough to catch a break (all those years ago),” he said. “This has to be the greatest moment of my life so far, and I just came here tonight to say ‘Hello.’
“They affected the course of my life, and I will die being a Peacemakers fan.”
The other guys – Clyne, Naffah and in his own way Scropos – also came away healed. Scropos wasn’t in the Refreshments during the troubles, but he knew enough about it to know there was “weird blood.”
“I thought it was really neat,” the bassist said. “Everyone’s really humbled by the experience, and I’m happy for the guys.”
When told that Blush called his own performance “terrible,” Naffah smiled while remembering how self-deprecating his old friend is. He also admitted to being a bit apprehensive at the thought of sharing a stage with him again and was glad it all happened as an impromptu jam, lest everyone be all twitchy about it.
“I haven’t talked to him in years, and nobody knew where he was – the last I heard, he was in Detroit,” Naffah said. “We needed this, though. I wish the guy the best and will jam with him anytime.”
As for Clyne, perhaps the most hurt by Blush’s actions way back when, he was a bit overwhelmed with the moment himself.
“This was the building of a bridge I burned a long time ago,” Clyne said. “Forgiveness is a good thing, and I hope Brian got as much peace out of it as I did.”
E! Channel’s been playing The Craft for the last few weeks, and I gotta say, I really dig that movie. To me, it’s a smarter, better version of Heathers, and I’m sure my angsty-cool card has been revoked for saying that, but seriously! Fairuza Balk BURIES Christian Slater in terms of over-the-top nutjobs. Just LOOK at her. Anyone who can have cockroaches crawling out her jacket arms? Is badass. Plus, she was hot in it, and all the other performances were nicely low-key for such a campy flick.
Those of you who still blog, do y’all still get spammed in your comments every so often? For as long as I can remember, I’ve been closing out my comments after 48 hours or so, but somehow they figure out how to get through and leave their droppings, or else the comment expire I put on expires or something, I don’t know. But anyway, I got a shit-ton of spam last week on entries I hadn’t thought about in forever, so I took a peek down Memory Lane as I zapped the spam. And as I was doing this, a particular entry grabbed my attention pdq:
That particular entry was about the e-mail the one guy sent me after Cat and I showed up at a party to which we were all invited; problem was, since the party was thrown by HIS friends (and God forbid I have anything to do with HIS friends because, well, they were HIS friends first), he was unhappy, and that was his response when I called him out on it (read: asked him nicely, like a sucker, why he was so rude to me at the party, because he not only didn’t talk to me the whole night, but he stayed directly across from me AT ALL TIMES, as if I smelled). Now normally, TOG doesn’t exist in any meaningful way for me anymore, but seeing that hed made my blood run cold.
But what REALLY kicked in the flop sweat was I wrote after it: I said I admired that he was able to protect his widdle feelings from my harshness (!) and that I would rather he be an asshole to me than ignore me, more or less. Just so I’m crystal here, let me break that down: I said in so many words that I was Ok with this guy treating me like shit—well, maybe not OK ok, but clearly Ok enough to not kick his stupid ass to the curb.
For all my bravada, that right there was—and still is in many ways—me. That scares me.
My issues with anxiety and depression aren’t exactly a secret to y’all, so it was about two weeks after my birthday that I fell into a sinkhole I haven’t experienced since after Dad died. Not sure if my meds stopped working or other external factors played into it, but it was bad enough that my peeps were begging me to get thy flat ass to the brain garage for a tune-up. The episode lasted a good month, month and a half, but for the moment I’m stable, in no small part because I’ve consciously started paying attention to and embracing the nurturing relationships I have and eschewing the ones that aren’t. The endeavor has and hasn’t been easy, but it is what it is, and I’m all right—horrified by what I’ve allowed myself to endure, but getting better.
In other news, Mother turned 75 this week. Do you believe that shit?
A couple funny stories for you that several of you have probably already heard, but you’ll live because to all youse who complain I never come here anymore, I’m writing for the second time this quarter, so ZIP IT and LIKE IT.
STORY NO. 1
A dear friend of mine has a young teenage daughter who, for whatever reason, thinks I’m pretty cool, so the last time I visited I told her I would friend her on Facebook, (Why kids that age find me cool still baffles me—and many do, believe it or not—but all right, I’ll take it.) Now, those of you who’re fb friends with me know that I can be kind of an a-hole with the swearing and the ranting and the so on and so forth, so I promised her parents that I would make sure to lock down my wall and any photos of vulgar t-shirts I might have cached in my photos because, you know, she’s smart, but she’s still a little young to really appreciate the humor in a “Fuck Me I’m Fat” shirt. Or maybe not, but still, that’s not something I or her folks want to find out right now. So I promise her folks she would be on super-sekret lockdown, and that’s exactly what I did ... except I didn’t get it locked down before she saw the pictures from my 40th.
You guys knew I turned 40 since the last time we talked, right? I did, and it was GRAND affair surrounded by my crew, with a limo, all the G-ball I could consume, a riotous performance by the boys and me in a sparkly sequined number and stilettos. Ten hours of nothing but drunken idiocy and mayhem—all of which was seen by the young lady in question because the next time I was over there, she proceeded to tell me how wasted I looked. (You would too if you’d spent 10 hours straight drinking and cavorting.) Well, me looking ridden-hard-put-away-wet isn’t exactly the image I want to convey to the young, but Ok, she’s seen me have a beer or two with the folks, and it was my birthday and I was having fun ... whatever. It’s cool, and her parents weren’t upset by it.
Anyway, so a few weeks go by, and the young lady and I are IM’ing on fb as we do from time to time. I think we were talking about how she was reading The Lovely Bones when all of a sudden, she asks me,
“Beated with ... wha ...!???” I thought to myself, wondering what the hell she was talking about; I didn’t get a chance to look at her clarification before I realized exACTly what she was talking about: the giant flesh-colored, double-headed DONG with which Cheeks delivered my birthday spankings.
Yeah ... see, whenever the boys perform a birthday thing, it’s Cheeks singing “Private Dancer” and giving whoever is the poor birthday-having bastard a lap dance. Well, since Cheeks is evil and knows my aversion to said dong (guys, he does really gross things with it involving tortillas and butt sweat), he and the boys decided to make the lap dance extra-embarrassing and went ahead and beat me with the dong in front of the whole bar. And it was all caught on camera. (Fucker BRUISED me with the damn thing, too, but I digress.)
After I got past the “Shit. Shit! SHIT!” running through my head, I determined there were two ways I could go with what was before me: I could either turn it into a great teaching moment and possibly give her an advantage over her friends in the ol’ sex knowledge department, or I could lie, lie, LIE and save us both a lot of embarrassment as well as the wrath of her parents, who would probably not allow me near her ever again if they knew I taught her about double-headed dongs. Though I’m sure y’all wish I’d have gone with the former—if for nothing else than to imagine me squirming trying to explain the concept of rubber appendages to a child who likely just learned about her period from the nuns—I’m a chicken. As far as she knows, Cheeks is a very strange man who thought it would be funny to deliver my spanking with a baguette ... a rather skinny, PINK baguette, but a baguette nonetheless.
(So y’all don’t think I’m a comPLETE dork, I told her she needs to wait until college before she sticks something she swipes from a dude down her shirt for him to retrieve. Because I’m cool like that.)
STORY NO. 2
Also at my 40th Birthday Party of Total Iniquity and Ill Repute(TM), G/BF thought it would be amusing to have Cheeks taunt and tantalize me with a Butterfly which, for those of you unfamiliar, is a “personal pleasure device” that’s supPOSED to look like a butterfly but to me looks more like an alien and NOTHING like anything I would want near my ladyflower. Said device was promptly packaged and tossed in the backseat of my car what, six weeks or so ago?
Fast-forward again to last Friday, when Li’l Kate and I got to see each other for the first time in 10 years. She couldn’t secure a rental to head down here from her training in the city, so I of course went to pick her up; since I spent most of the day screwing around, I didn’t get to shower before going to get her, and I painted quite the picture with my hair in a half-ass pony, no makeup and grungy sweatshirt I may or may not have worn all week. In other words, I wasn’t looking particularly ... feminine, if you will. Or clean.
I pull up in front of the building, and Li’l Kate comes out the door, her boss in tow because he wanted to go over a few more things with her on the elevator ride down. She comes over to the passenger side while I tell her boss to throw her suitcase in the backseat, to which he says
“Yeah, that’s fine,” I said, not thinking anything of it. But then we then arrive at the crib, where Li’l Kate pulls out her suitcase. And what should come FLYING OUT OF THE BACKSEAT WITH IT?
Li’l Kate and I stare at the little black box lying there on the ground for a second before she bursts out laughing and says, “Is THAT what he was talking about?”
“Shit, I forgot that was back there ... he’s not going to know what it is, though.”
“Uh, there’s a HALF-NAKED WOMAN ON IT.”
“Oh ... well, still.”
Still haven’t found out what Li’l Kate told the coworker who asked her, “So what happened when you left Friday?” Monday morning.
Yes, but if I may go on record here and point out that how the hell was I supposed to know G/BF was setting her son’s voicemail when I thought Buddy over on ”All Over the Map“ got Farrah Fawcett’s cancer wrong!?? (He didn’t, btw.) And anyway, if I heard someone yelling “RECTAL CANCER!” on voicemail, I would it hilarious. I may be the only one, but I’m Ok with that.
So it goes without saying that life is a shit-ton better when I’m not dying of some flesh-eating virus’ cousin or whatever. The Cat & Co. visit over Memorial Day was a great time—spent a lot of time in the city learning ... stuff, like at the Field Museum, for instance: We were walking through the Animals of Africa and Antarctica and whatever when we came upon a walrus skeleton. I don’t know if y’all have ever SEEN a walrus skeleton, but as I was looking at it I notice there’s a rather large bone situated between its legs, and not like a tail. I pondered this for a moment before I whispered to Cat “Cat, are you seeing what I’m seeing here?” to which she was all, “Yeeeeeah, I see it.” So we pondered it a bit longer before sharing our findings with Mr. Rags (her ex-husband with whom she’s reconciled, huzzah!) out of earshot of T-man, who’s at that age where anything scat-related is the greatest thing ever. Well, later at dinner (and I gotta interject here for a moment that for those of you who love Emilio’s Tapas: It was good, but I still think Arco is way better. Too bad it was CLOSED the Sunday we were there for whatever reason, forcing us to almost have to eat at a REALLY expensive little Japanese joint that looked good based on the recommendation of the two gay gentlemen we interrupted at dinner and California Rolls she and I scarfed down to use the bathroom), Cat whipped out the old Crackberry to look up whether walruses have ... bones in their bones. Sure enough, ALL animals have weiner bones except for, like, four of them, of which man is included. So as Cat’s sharing this information, T looks at us and said, “I know what you guys are talking about,” and we were all “No, you don’t,” when he looks at Cat and points at his unit. I of course started cracking up while Mr. Rags had to explain that we don’t point at that in public. Anyway, Mr. Rags isn’t convinced that Cat and I actually left the museum to go shoe shopping while he and T went to see the museum’s Pirate thingy; he thinks we just stood there marveling at the walrus bone.
[Fun fact: Did you know walrus bones can get up to at least 4 feet long and that one time, one that size went up for auction with a starting price of $16K? Tons of people bidded on the thing because it’s an oddity and why wouldn’t you want a walrus weiner bone in your collection? True story.]
There are other stories to tell from that weekend—like the yentas sitting behind us at the Cubs game and another scatological exchange with the BoyofWad, but I think my favorite parts had to do with T and me; it got to the point where all we had to do was look at each other, and we’d just start laughing for no reason, thereby proving once again that I’m nothing if not 12. That’s one groovy little kid, though.
Now, things have taken a somewhat contemplative turn up in these here parts—a turn that has me itching for trouble. And it IS a full moon this weekend ...
No need to get all excited about me posting twice in one week; I’m continuing a break I’m taking from the mass resort cleaning to which I’ve subjected myself for Cat & co.’s arrival tomorrow. Anyway, she and I were yapping, and she asked me if I’d read an article she sent about Post-Traumatic EMBITTERMENT Disorder, where a traumatizing event such as a death, break-up, divorce, job loss etc. causes someone to get so stuck on their bitterness and revenge that they become depressed and develop an inflated sense of entitlement, among other symptoms. You know, because that’s what kids who get everything handed to them on a platter need: a special diagnosis of their very own to hide behind.
I keed, I keed ... sort of.
I mean, Ok, I get that revenge is a common reaction to sudden, devastating loss; I can think of few times in my life when I haven’t wanted to unleash some diabolical plan on someone who’s hurt me, or at least wished they’d end up dead in a ditch through no fault of mine. And I have no doubt that these feelings are the root cause when someone goes apeshit and murders their family or picks off people at an amusement park because she or he got hired for the chorus instead of Daffy Duck or whatever. But I don’t know about a separate diagnosis altogether, because it seems to me that a lot of this can be placed under PTSD as a subset. What do I know, though? Thoughts?
[UPDATE 5/26: Check it out, yo! I beat the Jezzes to the punch: Lookit]
Things that have struck me dumb since, oh, let’s say Saturday:
-- On tonight’s second Intervention episode, the dude took to drinking foamy hand sanitizer when he couldn’t get out of the hospital quick enough to hit the fifth of vodka he had stashed at home.
-- The customer at the restaurant who, when he discovered his order was wrong, said—and I quote—“If I wanted to be treated this bad, I’d have stayed in Afghanistan.” Seriously? You’re really going to equate not getting your burritos grande to getting shot at in the desert? That’s a tad dramatic, n’est-ce pas!??
-- Then pal and co-waitress Double D (as in “Designated Driver,” you pervs) told the douchebag that her brother’s been in the Middle East twice already, yet she still doesn’t get why we’re there. I mean, I love that she said it, but during work where other customers might hear probably isn’t the best time or place.
-- In the first episode of Intervention—and this is one I’ve seen before, so how I missed this, I’ve no clue—the love-interest enabler chick basically just told the world the drunk with whom she’s in love either can’t get or keep it up. Wow. Hope he didn’t see THAT when he got out of rehab.
-- On our way home from the boys Sunday morning, G/BF tells me her latest nightmare (who we now refer to as “Dumbass No. 3,” or DA3 for short) told her if he moves back up here, he would STAY WITH ME so she could feel safe in knowing what he’s doing. O RLY!?? Because I would WANT his dumbass germs contaminating the resort.
-- The blatant homoeroticism of the latest Quizno’s ads: “Put it in me.”
-- Cheeks wearing a blowup doll with an arm-sized appendage on his head. (Ok, that didn’t strike me dumb, but it needed to be mentioned. We have the pictures to prove it.)
Despite all the toy play, I didn’t enjoy the weekend—still felt rotten and had family nonsense, after which I should’ve just taken my ass home instead of forcing myself to be social, because that rarely works and then I end up all fired up about stuff that’s, like, whoa, what the hell are you talking about. But tomorrow, I have a Cubs game with my old boss, so a slight change of scenery should do me good, and she and I always have a good time. Actually, it’s going to be an expensive month: Cubs tomorrow, RCPM Friday, another Cubs game over Memorial Day and possibly Great America at the end of the month to see my niece in her dance recital. Maybe I should start enterprising stories more.
I just retrieved the following off my voicemail from a certain 8 year-old ginger:
If y’all haven’t read Cat Rags’ post on this very subject, do. That kid KILLS me, and he and I are going to be living it up in a couple weeks, when Cat makes her triumphant return to the north for a bit of mayhem.
So anyone hear Miss anti-gay marriage California’s defense for the cheesecake pics of her that’ve been leaked? She’s saying they were released to ruin her reputation and poke fun of her values ... (sigh). I mean, her idiot comments on gay marriage aside, I watch enough E! Channel to know that pageant contestants? Not supposed to pose for pictures without their clothes on, and I don’t think that’s changed from the ‘80s and Vanessa Williams, so if she knew she was going to hop on the pageant circuit, why would she allow the photos to be taken in the first place? I don’t know, I guess I’m just annoyed by the hubris of her trying to turn it into a religious persecution argument when hey! shouldn’t have been posing in your panties in the first place, dumbass!
Similar but not congruent, G/BF ... not so much into boyshorts, she informed me apropos of nothing the other day when we were on our way to Localpalooza II. Apparently, there are creepage issues that *I* don’t experience. And now I’m sure you feel better for knowing that.
I think my rock n’ roll lifestyle has caught up to me again, because my sleep’s all screwed up and I woke up with my throat on fire and bloody mucous, making me completely miserable and reclusive on such a gorgeous day. (And before anyone says anything about my hypochondria, whatever this is is NOT H1N1. The thought didn’t even cross my mind. I’m serious! I ain’t all freaked out about no stinkin’ swine flu. Now, sinus cancer? That might’ve been googled. Go big or go home with your pretend illnesses, I always say.) This is going to be one of them nonstop weekends, too, including a family Communion thingy that got thrust upon me this morning by Mother for Saturday, so whatever this is better get gone quickly.
Evidently, I’ve been doing my job right this week, because damn people all butt-hurt and telling me how to do my damn job. Jesus. Look, lady, I didn’t stay for “the whole meeting” because my deadline is 9 p.m., and it takes me a half-hour or so to write up a story. Therefore, since I left at 8:45, surely you can see the dilemma, right? As for how I cover a story and what I end up writing about it, my job is to provide readers with the newest information humanly possible, and I hate to tell you this, but the people in the crowd were NOT SAYING ANYTHING NEW. I know you think they were, but between the nutjob who had his son refigure the study numbers, the Rush-wannabe wingnut accusing the board of entertaining real estate offers and HIS mother getting up and talking about how her father was the first union president, really, they weren’t. In fact, the only parent who offered anything remotely reasonable was the woman who asked what improvements would be made with the money that would be saved. And no, no one on EITHER SIDE gave any viable solutions, either, so tell you what: When the parents CAN say anything I haven’t heard ad nauseum since November, I’ll stop acting like I have better things to do. ‘k?
THAT one wasn’t even the best one, either. Behold the atrocity I got over the weekend; my comments are obviously italicized. [WARNING: It’s SUPER long.]
I am writing to you to let you know the utter distain and frustration I have for the article you wrote regarding the generous donation given by the Embassies of Christ Church in Gary, Indiana of $36,500 to retain a police officer from getting laid off her job.
[Yikes. Sounds serious.]
To say that you minimized a major event that took place in the City of Gary and made it to look like a minor event is an understatement! You evidently are an expertise in downplaying that could have been a monumental change in our city had you wrote the article correctly.
[Hold up—did you just accuse me of subtlety? I don’t think anyone’s EVER accused me of subtlety before. Huh. No one’s ever called me an “expertise,” either, so this makes two foreign concepts for me to digest, and I haven’t even gotten through two grafs yet.]
Your slant and opinion was revealed in your headline title, “Church Kicks in Cops Salary, left much to be desired and showed your lack of respect in several ways. [Since I don’t write the headlines, please go on. I will say, though, it hasn’t been long enough to notice you forgot the close quote on the hed.] In the first place, the derogatory slang word, “cops” is not an endearing word that denotes honor and dignity nor is it a respectful word such as policeman, or police officer would bring to mind. The word cops is generally used by unsavory individuals who lack respect for our men and women who lay their lives on the line everyday to protect us, and your negative input and comments helped to bring forth negative comments from outside readers was even more frustrating.
[Again, had nothing to do with the headline, but would you have preferred the more common vernacular of “Po-Po?” “Pigs?” “New World Odor?” C’mon, at least let us have “5-0.”]
They were clueless like you, for Pastor Cedric and Joyce are giving and loving shepherds who have loving and giving hearts and believe in blessing others generously.[Huh? What has that to do with using “cops?”] They feed the hungry with food baskets and clothing every month, people in financial trouble get assistance from the Transition Housing we have, where those in financial distress don’t have to pay rent for a year, and are given free utilities to help pay off their bills, and every year, they give away brand new stoves, refrigerators and washer & dryers to help needy people. [I know; I was there during the service, where the good deeds were announced on the giant flat screens via “newscast.”] They have never had a Pastor’s anniversary, but instead give their members a Worker’s Appreciation every year at their expense.
[Mmmhmmm. They also have “Member Appreciation” cards that members swipe each week for the chance to win a trip to the Bahamas. Person with the most swipes wins. Wonder where the money for THAT comes from ...]
Secondly, you misspelled Pastor Cedric’s name(not Cedrick as you spelled it), and had you done your research or took time to even interview him or his wife, you would have known he does not use the title of Rev, and prefers to be called Pastor C or Pastor Cedric.
[He can call himself the Goddamn “Lord of the Rings” if he wants. *I* have to call him “The Reverend” on first mention and by his last name on all subsequent references. Don’t like it? Call the people after whose stylebook we and the entire news industry have modeled ours for the last 75+ years: (212) 621-1500. Good luck with that.]
You had the opportunity to show Gary and the surrounding cities of a love and kindness shown to Shanesha Emmons, who was about to be laid off her job due to the City budget deficit. Your article should have contained words like:
• WAY TO GO !
• GOOD JOB EMBASSIES OF CHRIST!
• WONDERFUL !
• CONGRADULATIONS! [This isn’t even a word.]
Yet none of the above words were present in your article at all. Why not? I’ll tell you why, because they are positive, uplifting and inspiring words. Instead, your condescending words painted a picture of distrust of motives, downbeat, unconstructive, unenthusiastic, and had a very pessimistic slant on a good deed that was done, and to me, your article was a waste of good paper.
[See, that’s interesting to me, because REPORTERS AREN’T ALLOWED TO EXPRESS OR INFER THEIR OWN OPINION WHEN THEY WRITE A STORY, and if you’re taking away all that ish from what I wrote, that’s coming from inside you. You might want to talk to the Olivers about that.]
Your style of writing reminds me of the National Enquirer [Note to self: Stop trying so hard.], where they feed on negative assumptions instead of reporting the whole truth of the matter. Good journalism-definitely not!
We have enough negative people, as well as some reporters, who down-play any good thing that happens in Gary, but they are great on reporting crime news, or articles that reflect anything bad and for you to minimize something great as this event was, the word unbelievable comes to my mind.
Your small dig when mentioning the Honorable Mayor Rudolph Clay [Aaaaaaaaah, I get it: You’re a city employee, aren’t you? Because I’ve never met any people who aren’t, yet call him “Honorable.”] was uncalled for and your total disrespect of not acknowledging Senator Earline Rogers, Ms. Emmons, and the Chief of Police who were present and on hand, was an insult to our distinguished elected officials, and the honoree, and this was basic elementary reporting that you neglected while writing your article.
[(takes deep breath) Ok. Point one: Now I’m not sure you even read the article, because Ms. Emmons WAS THE STORY LEAD, and Chief Harris comprised the WHOLE SECOND PART OF THE STORY. How is that not acknowledgment!?? Point two: Regarding my “little dig,” let’s talk about the “honorable” Rudy Clay’s views on crime in the city. Rudy has been quoted many times as saying “There’s no crime in Gary”—see
Evidently, a $10,000 fundraiser by the NWI Credit Union to the Northwest Indiana Food Bank was obviously greater than the $36,500.00 Embassies gave freely from their hearts. [Yes. Because the money EOC raised is worth more than money for a stinky old food bank—one that y’all over there at EOC likely dip into to do your good works since Angie and her crew give food to 92 entities throughout Lake and Porter counties, but you know, details and whatnot.] The donation by the Credit Union has a picture with their people holding a copy of the check and was on Page C2, yet not one picture of the pastors, mayor, police chief, the recipient, nor Senator Rogers’ picture of them holding the check for $36,000 make the paper at all-why I ask? There was a post tribune reporter there taking pictures.
[No, there wasn’t, because only a handful of reporters take pictures, and I’m not one of them.]
A half-fuzzy picture of 3 people in the choir with the article did not compare and again, added insult to injury. [It’s too bad you feel that way, because the performance was spectacular and much more visually attractive than a pack of mopes holding a damn check. But since YOU know how to do our job better than we do, I’ll make sure to pass your critique to the award-winning photographer who took the shots.] This reflected to me on the attitude of your Editor as well, is why I am sending him a copy of this letter as well.
[I’m sure she’ll welcome it ... as much as anyone likes anything from a know-it-all harpie.]
I feel you both did an injustice here and owe my Pastors a positive rewrite for the negative coverage given [Will I get to go to the Bahamas if I do?] because something good like this could have generated much good will in the city had it been done right, and it seems this was done purposely. Nobody could write such a bad article about such a good event unless it was done purposely. How sad!
[Yes, I intentionally set out to offend a large portion of the population by not using “Way to Go!” in my story. Do you know how dumb that sounds?]
The next time you are assigned to do any news worthy and exciting about a wonderful event that is done in Gary-DON’T! PLEASE DECLINE!! We want positive reporting when a positive thing happens.
[There you go again with that “positive” nonsense. I told you: I DON’T GET TO EXPRESS OR INFER OPINION WHEN I WRITE A STORY, so anything negative you took from it is ALL YOU, sweetie!]
I would rather have no news reported than to have your slanted view with your gratuitous remarks reporting anything else good that happens in our City.
[So then I guess you’re really going to hate knowing that I’ve moved into the Gary office and have been given the church beat, huh?]
One last note: The story she’s bitching about? Was referenced ON THE FRONT PAGE.
if Michael Phelps can get his Wheaties revoked for hitting a bong, punk-ass bitch Chris Brown better lose his endorsement for hitting a girl. Who’s with me!??
that would be because I’m once again on an eating frenzy where nothing resembling food is safe. It’s like, you know, I’m nearing menopause, fer chrissake; you’d think this shit would ease up after awhile. Gad.
How ‘bout a vignette dump? Haven’t done one of those in a while ...
-- You in the band! You ain’t security: Managed to get in the middle of a bar fight Saturday night when the little brother of a friend started getting shoved around by some dumbass drunk. First I tried to grab him, and then I got between the two of them when the shoving started. I was feeling a little feisty, you see, and since I wasn’t going to get to let off steam in other ways, you gotta do what you gotta. Girlie just kind of rolled her eyes.
-- Oh, but there WILL be trout slapping tonight, Ladies: Yeah, see, when the “friend card” is played on one, one really needs to think long and hard about whether the (in theory) long and hard is worth it. But that’s all I’m going say about that, so take from it what you will.
-- Still getting acclimated to the new computer. Turns out all the hassle last week? Was over a dead ethernet cord, which wad DID point out was most likely the cause and Emperor Warrior Kendar told me how to check. There might also have been a complete overlooking of the little satellite icon at the front of the computer, too, but that wasn’t the problem. VISTA, though! You really CAN’T do anything without it asking you whether you want to or not, which yeah, is kinda good for those of us who know just enough about computers to do a lot of damage but sure is annoying when you DO know what you need to do. Cumbersome. But I’m really digging being able to stretch out on the couch and do my stuff; I just need to get a wireless router.
-- Watched the Inauguration today at Bang Bang, and the ladies and I were kinda disturbed by the color of Michelle’s suit. Over there, it looked like chartreuse, which I thought was a really odd choice considering she rocks yellow, but upon further inspection it was really a pretty golden yellow. I wasn’t having the green shoes she wore with it, though.
-- Speaking of the Inauguration, I have to say I’m pretty appalled by all the star fucking going on. Yes, celebrities identify liberal, but come on! When have they ever taken such an interest?
-- So my check is once again late, and in keeping with my feisty mood, I’m sure I didn’t make any friends when I got a little testy about it.
Awesome, awesome AWESOME!
Know what else is awesome? Two words: TOOL. ACADEMY. Earlier I fell asleep to “Celebrity Rehab House of Allegedly Sober People” and woke up to this bit of magnificence. People, you must watch it. I know Girlie will fight me to the end on adding it to the Crap TV lineup, but I don’t care. This is spectacular television, and I’ll endure it myself if I must.
One other thing: I’m now coming to you from my new Christmas laptop, of which I seem to finally have fully operational. Remind me to tell you what a nightmare it was trying to get it there. I will say this, though: Vista is an asspain, fer real.
Four forty-two. That’s what time I got home this morning.
No, no. I wasn’t partying up with my crew or getting my junk crunked or anything one would normally assume would be going on at 4:42 ayem. Nope, I was driving home from Area 2, District 5 after sitting there for FIVE HOURS. For nothing in which *I* was involved.
Let’s back the train up, here: 10:30, right as Chelsea starts her monologue. I’m on the can after watching Nip/Tuck (whoa, this season’s going to be fucked UP, people!) when I hear voices (or A voice, as it turns out) in the hallway followed by hysterical knocking. I yell “Hold up! Hold up!” and finish my business, thinking the building’s on fire and how the hell am I going to round up the boys to get them out. The building wasn’t on fire, though; it was my downstairs neighbor, and a cop just called her and said he has her boyfriend, can she come and pick up his truck so it doesn’t get impounded? They’re at the corner of such and such ... on Chicago’s East side. And she doesn’t know how to get there, can I please, PLEASE come with her!??
Now, you might remember such situations as the Sweetest Day debacle that would be reason enough for me not to venture out of the crib where these two are concerned. You might also remember that I’m a big sap. And anyways, she was going to take the long way to get there, and I at least know how to get there quicker.
So the ride there was listening to her manically flit from one topic to the next, but the gist was the cop didn’t tell her why they had him and that she’d talked to him an hour earlier, and he’d said he was sleeping. (I, in the meantime, had decided it wasn’t a cop that called her but an “associate” who was going to pop a cap in her head as soon as she got out of the car, but I digress.) We get to the intersection, and sure enough, there’s his truck and an unidentified cop car behind it. She parks, throws her emergency lights on and then tells me to follow them to the station, but doesn’t tell me how to turn her emergencies off, so there I was driving like an idiot in a 2009 Camry with emergencies, blowing stops and shit just so I can keep up because it’s been waaaaaay long since I sowed oats on the East side. (Yeah, I was hardcore back in the day. What!?) Our destination: 111th and Cottage Grove, also known as Area 2, the place where telephone books are never wasted.
I think I told y’all once the lesson I learned about the penal system and how it’s not supposed to be like Momma’s house in order to keep criminals from coming back, right? I can tell you with utmost authority that Calumet Station? Not so much with the amenities. Thankfully, it didn’t smell like urine a la the old Gary HQ, but man! Imagine taupe and burnt sienna colored floor tile that’s kinda coming up in spots but not really, gray walls, block glass surrounding stairwells with primary yellow painted railings and brown gates separating the lobby and the rest of the facility, then take away any joy or hope you’ve ever had in your life and throw four homeless people sleeping outside, and there you go. Oh, and let’s not forget this art ... thing suspended between the two buildings that looks like a big chunk of ceiling tile held by 100 little wires and any manner of sketchy hooligans wandering in and out, especially the one woman who kept railing at the “pussy-ass po-lice” for arresting her brother or cousin or whoever—THAT was fun to decipher.
We’re there about an hour when the other arresting cop comes out and tells her his prints have come back fine and that whatever it was he was doing (and I do know, but for privacy reasons I’ll keep it to myself) wasn’t serious enough for the cop to pursue it but that the boyfriend WAS arrested and would be released at, oh, 3 a.m. “Well, hell, (neighbor), why don’t we just go home and he can call you when he’s done? We’re not that far from here for you to come back.” She told me I could take her car home, but like yeah, I’m going to leave her in the middle of the ‘hood by herself all geeked up on adrenaline and suspicion. That’s never a good combo for ANYONE. At that point, she says let’s take his truck and get something to drink.
And that’s when she started the recon.
We’re sitting there in the parking lot, she with her coffee and Red Bull (and for those like T who know my neighbor, they know that’s a baaaaad combination) and I with my Sierra Mist Cranberry, going through his immaculate vehicle looking for evidence. This, I had mixed feelings on. I mean, I’m no stranger to the recon and am pretty darn good at it—please—but. It’s all about what you’re going to do with the info once you have it, and I knew she was going to do exactly what she did—call the woman—and really, when the relationship is as bad as theirs, there’s really no point in getting all up in the other woman’s biz; let the other one deal with his stupid ass, right? Turns out, though, that that woman isn’t the woman he’s cheating with; it’s ANOTHER one. (FABulous!) Anyway, whoever it is doesn’t matter because now she knows, and hallelujah! she wants to leave him there—except we CAN’T, because she can’t just leave his keys at the front desk for him, say the officers.
So, we go back out to the truck for awhile before coming back in at 2:55 because he was supposed to be let go at 3, remember, and I’m starting to reek because the temp in truck was like 80 and who knows how hot it was in the station, and I was wearing sweats that should never leave the crib, clean or not.
34:10 rolls around, and we ask again what the holdup is: The officer said there was a “mishap”; the cleaning ladies said someone threw up and peed all over, and until THAT was brought “under control,” no one was leaving. FINALLY about 34:20, he came out. I thought she would just hand him his keys and leave with me, but no, she wanted to ride with him, so whatever, I didn’t have to listen to it. I got in her car and drove the hell home.
Earlier this evening, I was on the horn with Mother when I started hearing what sounded like caterwauling until the caterwauling started forming words. I look out, and the boyfriend is walking up to the door with a bag, then he goes back to the truck and PULLS her out of it. I stood there and waited for her to throw herself in front of the vehicle, but thankfully that didn’t come to pass. Haven’t heard anything since.
Info meme #1
Typelogic says I'm an INFP.
Check my weekly astrological groove here.
Give it to me, baby.
Pssst ... My birthday's Feb. 3, and I want this, and this, and this ...
The Make-Believe Oral Cancer Foundation (M-BOCF) is now accepting donations on my behalf. Won't you please help those of us who jump to hideous conclusions regarding our oral health and help me get a root canal or two!??:
/> Wanna make a bunch of money doing what you're doing right now?
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Broad said: Like I said, my feelings are complicated on the matter, so ... I’m interested, however, in Her Highness’ thoughts on… ...[go].
Caterina said: ARGH!!! Not to deny you your goddess-given right of reflections and wishing what might-have-beens, but this guy was straight up… ...[go].
Wholovesya? said: By the by, guess who was most nasty about the charitable giving? The frigging church. My church and my mom’s… ...[go].
Wholovesya? said: By the by, I’m not the only one I know. I have friends who work at soup kitchens because they’re… ...[go].
Wholovesya? said: As you know, I was a voyeur to the beginning of this, and I was loving your comment! I have… ...[go].
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This explains that large bit of type at the top.
Tagline by Ben F'in Mollin, talking about those times you wake up still drunk from the night before.
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