Monday, December 25, 2006
Thursday, December 21, 2006
Saturday, December 09, 2006
Mike emailed me an invite to this, but I am feeling tired and moody (closed Gallagher's #264 again last night) and may not feel up to attending, though it does sound interesting or "wacky" as he described it. [oddly enough: as I type this WLUW is playing Zelienople right now!]
And then there's a Christmas Exchanges with friends, family, and coworkers. Ah, the stress. Hell, I get a little sad walking the aisles of Jewel-Osco shopping for cheap and crap groceries for myself much less freaking out whether someone else will like what I buy. I hate asking for gifts and such from people, and I am not a big fan of buying stuff for others. A feeling probably related to some buried, hidden trauma from my childhood or something.
But I slog through every year.
And then there's the Terror of What Am I Going To Do New Year's Eve!
I like January 1st: the Holiday Horrors are done for one more year.
Okay, off to shave my head, and then down to the River East Art Center for coworker booze and mischief.
Thursday, December 07, 2006
Wednesday, December 06, 2006
Originally uploaded by Mac(3).
I only have a blurry belchy blackout-filled idea where October went. It disappeared into the bottom of a cheap domestic beer can.
Working two jobs and somehow, accidentally, blowing off a lot of my friends, I found myself at Gallagher's (#264) on most every Friday night during October and November until early Saturday grim mornings (fuck! It's December already!?!)
I'd awake late Saturday afternoons to find that strange happenings had occurred within my apartment while I slept: a bookcase pulled away from the wall, a half-eaten sandwich on my bedstand, all my clothes on the living room floor, a plate upside-down on the kitchen floor, a candle coaster on a random window sill, or empty beer cans strewn all over the kitchen floor to name but a few.
I'd try to piece together the last minutes of my evening before I fell asleep, but memory would fade abruptly at that point of opening Gallagher's front door to leave. Did I take a cab? Did I walk up Clark or Wollcott? Did it matter?
All through 5 years of college and a little over ten years living in Chicago, I'd only blacked-out once...for twenty minutes on my 21st birthday. It was funny, and sort of amusing. I thought I only said, hello" to the woman sitting on the bar counter next to my stool; but, according to D.K. and A.R., I'd actually held a half an hour conversation with this short blonde woman.
"Did she seem pissed or anything?" I asked A.R. the next day.
"No," he assured me, "she actually was laughing and seemed to be having a food time talking to you."
But when you go out into the night alone, there is no one to watch your back or assure you that you were perfectly fine. And the blackouts? Like anything else that happens to humans, we learn to adapt. I wake up, stumble around the apartment, make sure nothing is broken, check the placement of keys, and feel relieved that "no babies died."
In any event, I am drawn back to this place over and over again. It's close, there are Latina bar girls there who will sit with you for a drink, and it's open past 3, giving me time to drink my fill. Drown the Blue-haired Demons and wash the Banking World Dust Boredom out of my throat. I drink alone for the most part, watching the Mexican men drink at the bar and the bar girls rush around the room, laughing as the men buy them over-priced, watered-down drinks. I lean over the bar slightly to get a better view of them dancing to ranchero music or to get a better view of the other bar girls who come into Gallagher's from another Mexican bar down the street somewhere after two o'clock (on a warmer night, I'll look for this one). Sometimes another guy will attempt to hold a conversation with me; I in my broken Spanish, and he in his broken English. Other than that, no one really bothers with the Solo Gringo at the bar. Only screwed with a couple of times: one guy threw napkins at me because I wouldn't ask one of the bar girls to "let me smell your pussy" in Spanish. Another time some one stole my camera from my coat pocket while I was in the bathroom. And another time, some dork kept asking me to shout "Mamasita!" (over and over and over). Pick on the Chico Blanco.
But usually I am just left alone to go deeper into my cups and make broken Spanglish small-talk with Tanya and Bianney, the bartenders. Or they'll buy me a beer for no reason, or give me their phone numbers to call them next time I come to the bar. No, I don't get it.
I used to invite friends to come along on my trek to Gallagher's, but now... now I think I'd rather go alone. It's my secret place now. My only sense of adventure in this boring life I'm seem to be stuck in. Of course, if a pal wants to come along, I won't say no; but, I know the night will be different. Not good or bad, just different.
I'm not even sure what I mean there.
A couple of weeks ago, a woman named Tina started working there. She speaks English, so now I get the added fun of getting some of the inside gossip of the bar. Rumors: Nacho, the owner, (Nacho?!?) wants to turn the place into a "white" bar, for the money. Someone is stealing $200 a night from the till. She thinks she knows who stole my camera. The manager asked her to sleep with him. One of the workers shouldn't be working there. One bar girl gets bigger tips because she lets patrons grab her tits and ass.
Mostly we talk about her kids, the bar, her crazy sisters, her pole-dancing days, and what's going down in the bar that night. When she's not freak-dancing her ass on my thigh (because it cracks her up how nervous and embarrassed I get), we'll talk and (depending on what side of me she's standing on) I'll see either the words "Hope" or "Destiny" floating in front of my eye, the tats on her arms. I find the sight both comforting and ironic depending on how blotto I am at the moment.
Some Friday in the future we're supposed to go to Star Gaze so she can cruise women.
I'll just be going along to see what happens...alone at the bar.
Tuesday, October 10, 2006
Monday, October 02, 2006
Monday, September 18, 2006
That's when someone from an apartment window on high fucking spits on me.
A huge watery white foamy gushing splat of spit all down my arm.
I hate people sometimes.
Thursday, September 07, 2006
Friday, September 01, 2006
Monday, August 21, 2006
- I've closed Gallagher's (#264) the past three Fridays.
- Helped a couple celebrate at their wedding reception.
- Invited and bought drinks for two total strangers I bumped into on Clark Street at one in the morning (Eric and Sergio, hello).
- Bummed cigarettes to strangers under a ranchero beat while staring at large, barely-hidden breasts on not-really-attractive bartenders.
- Bought a drink for a lovely-looking woman with short, Midnight Black hair who turned out to be an ex-prostitute from New York, now lost in Rogers Park depressed and bi-polar and asking me if I think she should trust the man in the pink shirt. "I don't need you! I don't need anyone!" The Ugly Lights turned on, and I walked out into the morning confused and lonely.
- Completely fumbled hitting on a brown-eyed, brunette at The Green Eye (# 268) even after she said the picture of Woody Guthrie (or is it a young Bob Dylan?) looked like me. "I just saw you from over there, and your eyes are really pretty. They sparkle, they're beautiful."
- Went to The Red Light (# 267) with friends and drank wayoverpriced vodka, but dug the interior look. "This is what bars, cafes, and the streets in Spain are like, Mac," B.H-T. said. But I'll never know, I thought.
- Stood behind the Landmark Arts on cobblestones, smoking cigarettes and gulping vodka and something, pretending I was in New York in the fall. Laughing with friends. Feeling involved in life. Pretending I was cool and a somebody.
- Took a twenty minute nap in my office at work. Then went to lunch.
- Helped to facilitate these two friends getting into a show at The John Galt Gallery, and had a great time at opening night. Later went to the L&L (# 259) and El Jardin's (# 101) with my boss and her friend for beers, margaritas, and tequila shots all the while getting hugged, kissed on the cheeks, and insulted (sometimes all at once which is a strange feeling).
- Asked to watch my neighbor's pets again while they vacation, even after my last goof-up.
So things are happening, sort of, in a way; but, I can't seem to get into the Writing Rhythm. My nose is always dipped in the sauce, pressed to the grind, or buried in a pillow. I am stuck in my ways, and my ways aren't taking me anywhere.
When you're not even sure where you want to go, it makes it that much harder to find the way.
Out of practice, out of patience, out of energy, out of time.
Monday, August 14, 2006
Work week at The Bank sucked: tons of little projects weighing me down with practically no help from Big J., nagging Marketing M., little support from bosses, and an overall negative vibe from coworkers (they all want to quit.)
"When the going gets tough, the tough go drinking."
At my part-time job, Voiceover J. got promoted to a floor supervisor (but at another store, booo), so people met at Chumps to celebrate/morn our loss. She's one of my favorite coworkers, the 22 ounce beer tasted bitter-sweet.
Earlier that day at The Bank, I found out The Mooney Suzuki were playing at The Double Door. Stopped home after The Bank and called Mike, but no one answered. I figured they had band practice so that ruled out calling Matt too. Drove to Chumps. When I walked into the seating area, the ensembled coworkers ladies shouted, "Mac!!!"
It's like I'm the Norm of the store (only skinny). They even do that at times when I walk into work. It strikes me as flattering and really odd.
I ate a slice of quesadilla and talked until the group broke up early. I raced home to check my messages: nothing from Mike, so left for The Double Door. I find this sitting by my car, and consider it a lucky sign (no, I don't know why).
No one really there. There had been some sort of Chicagoist party/ V2 Records party. A large Chicagoist.com banner hung from the balcony railing and "writerly looking" guys and women staggered around with mixed drinks and Buds.
Paul(?) from Gang of Four was spinning great music which ranged from country to punk to hardcore techno, running the songs smoothly together (except for the Road Runner song that kept skipping).
People started entering as Blood Meridian set started. I liked them pretty well, sort of alt-country pop, I suppose.
Two sorority chicks types walk by, "if they banned smoking from this place, my life would be perfect"
I thought, "Oh, shut. the. fuck. up."
I moved from the bar to the far wall as Gosling came on next. I'd definitely see these guys again. I won't even try to describe them because I wouldn't do justice to their sound.
The crowd is picking up now. I'm glad I moved to the little riser part, to get a better view for picture taking. I had a clear shot of the stage and any antics to come.
And then a guy with wide, triangular hair that brought these guys to mind stands directly in front of me. Total obstacle. I do not want to be bobbing and weaving back and forth trying to get a shot off, so I get up the nerve to ask him if we could switch, explaining my photo plan.
Turns out he's a really nice guy named Gordy. We talk for a bit about how many times and where we'd seen The Mooney Suzuki, and it turns out we attended the same Metro show; the one where the band got stuck in customs ("security said they couldn't let us off the plane with this much rock") They were tired and seemed to have gone through the motions, with a short set to boot, but still a lot of fun.
And then they came on: Boom!
Again, I'll not bother to describe the amazing tunes and stage patter and inspirational experience that is The Mooney Suzuki. Just to touch upon how good they are: I was only a hip-swing away from actually dancing. In public! Damn, they're so good.
After the show, pumped up and floating on air, I still needed to go out, to go on. I realized I wouldn't make it to My Place (#265) before two, so racked my brain for a Four A.M. bar.
To the Mark II Lounge (#260)!
Ugh. It was like walking into a flashback to Greenery/Nickalodean back at school, only with all The Bad Parts. With old men (older than me!) standing around hawking at the coeds.
And then I noticed this Hot Puerto Rican at the next table. Her Guido fucko boyfriend was passed out on the table, while her and her friends danced around. Then he wakes up and picks his nose. Heavily-chained dude doesn't even care everyone sees him, including his hottie. His friends dance and the other dude looks like a fun guy, just goofing dance in the chair next to me with his plump girl who can actually move. The Guido Fucko stands up and his hottie grinds and rubs up against him, basically doing these dead-on strippers moves. Sweet Mami!
They soon leave, leaving me with no eye-candy. Kareoke starts up, blech! A woman (bald in paper boys cap jeans and tank top alien lesbian biker type) starts singing.
I decide to cut my loses and go home at a reasonable hour.
And then I remember Gallaghers (#264): latin music and the, occasional, hottie Latina.
I drive over, park about a block west. Cops pull out of alley across street next to bar and begin arresting and searching the car of two couples.
The door is locked when I get there, but there's a crowd inside and the music is going. WTF!? I pull on the door a couple of times and peek into the window and suddenly the door pops open. I'm not carded, but frisked as usual. I weave to the bar and order a Heinekan keg can. $6 (um, again, WTF?!) I could have sworn the beer was cheaper last time.
I ask the guy next to me, "$6, is this for real?"
I could have sworn last time I paid $3, but they were Miller or some domestic shit, so maybe that's the difference import/domestic.
I sip and watching crowd dance and the men play pool. I actually recognize the bartenders, the general manager in the cowboy hat, and some of the women in the bar, including the one who (I think) hit on me at last call two past times ago, but in Espanola Rapido, so I didn't understand a freaking thing she said; so, she had just walked away.
That's when the guy next to me moves over a barstool and starts talking to me. Filipo, married with daughter and son "very smart with the computers. good grades." He starts bumming smokes, why not? I have enough. Small talk and then I hear myself asking: "is it okay I'm here, as a whitey?"
"Fuck yeah, is good"
"My English not good."
"Why you come here to this place?"
"The music, the late hour, the latinas."
"Ah! Latinas!" [long pause as we look into the crowd] "You like boys or girls?"
I mentally punch him across the jaw.
After he leaves, I drink another beer. Compliment the 49th ward cop guarding the line/ controlling the bathroom "whenever I call you guys are right there!"
A pretty Colombian woman sits down a few barstools away with her date/boyfriend, and mouths "hello" at my drunken half-smile and stare. I sigh, and finish my drink just as the Ugly Lights snap on. One last look around the room for my Last Call Latina: nothing, and that guy to my left has two bonitas hanging on him!
"Not fair, dude," I mumble to myself and saunter out into the morning purple for home.
Thursday, August 10, 2006
An excerpt from Pitchfork Media:
"...'Song for Clay' (formerly 'Merge on the Freeway'), inspired by the main character of Bret Easton Ellis' novel Less Than Zero. "
Thanks to Stereogum (again and again for showing me the way)
I am so looking forward to hearing more and more of The Bloc Party!
[related: for more information on Bret Easton Ellis, check out Not An Exit (great site)]
Tuesday, August 01, 2006
My neighbors, Carrie and Justin, are summering at a beautiful east coast location, so they asked me to look in on their pets while away. No problem; I've done this before and finished the job with no animals dying and all my fingers intact, so Easy-breezy, right?
Typical routine every night after work: walk over, feed the cat, attempt to befriend the cat, snatch fingers away from cat's mouth, feed the bird, stroke bird's head until it makes that I'm-happy-but-sounds-like-I'm-performing-a-farmer's-handkerchief, feed the fish, feed the iguana, hang out for a bit listening to music, and then go back to my own apartment. Simple up-to-an-hour procedure, no? Did it okay last time, and this time the first few days are equally fine.
Then the fucking heat wave hit. I thought my apartment in the Complex burned like the sun, but they're one floor up from me. Last night, I opened all my pores nicely in the 45 minutes or so there.
Ah, expensive spas and saunas, eat your heart out!
It's the 6th Level of Hell (Level of Swamp Humid Alligator Devils and Crotch Rot) in there. I run around and turn all the fans on high, and I quickly fill the cat and bird bowls with cold water. The poor cat is panting faster than a hummingbird in the clutches of a Meth Binge, tongue lolling out and sides pumping up and down. I watched for a bit, waiting for the Alien scene recreation, but he calmed down in front of the window fan. I turn to the iguana cage and the trap door is open.
AND IT"S FUCKING EMPTY!!!
"Holyshitholyshitholyshit!" I'm now sneaking creeping around the apartment with all the sweaty hair on the back of my neck sticking up. "holyshitholyshitholyshit," I'm whispering in a tiny sing-song voice, "don't scare the mini-dinosaur, it'll slice your Achilles heel."
That little lock-picking prehistoric thief escaped!
Their lived-in looking apartment now resembles every horror movie with an ancient monster I've ever seen. "What the hell is that?!? Oh, bungy cord. Sweet Mother of Mary (Dina)! Ah, green socks..." etc. There are so many hiding places for this green scaly killer, it'll take me all night to flush him out...and then what?
I break Pet Sitting Rule #13: Never smoke in a non-smoker's apartment. I'm shaking, leaning over the sink, blowing Camel Light smoke out the window like it's 1990 and I'm pulling tubes in the dorm again. I'm just thankful the bird is in it's cage (chirping) and the cat isn't ripped to shreds/half eaten/strewn across three rooms.
And then I remember one of them saying, "yeah, he usually walks the same route when we let him out: straight to the bedroom and back again when he's hungry."
Entering The Bedroom. I now break Pet Sitting Rule #3.
Since it's dark and evil-looking, I refuse to rummage through the bedroom closet. Last resort as the beast will have all advantages holed up in there. Instead, I head for The Art Studio section of the bedroom just to see if....
Oh God, there he is. Sitting on a box of canvas frames, staring out the window...claws digging into the cardboard. Did I mention the lethal claws?
Back to the kitchen for a smoke.
"Okay, he's mellow. I'll just scoop him into that Crate and Barrel box I saw next to him (#5 for you employed there)."
I go back in with a bowl of his food, place it oh-so-gingerly into the box. "Yeah, I'll just lure him in there, scoop it up, run like a madman to the cage, and dump him in."
He doesn't take the bait. I wait in the living room for ten minutes, then sneak back in, "Iguana, " I whisper. Still no movement, like a freaking tongue licking statue.
Except now he's waving his head around, flapping that throat flap thing at me. Is that like a cat winking (good) or like an attack-mode thing (bad)? I run away.
"Aargh! Why couldn't you be a cat?"
I tip-toe back in like Elmer Fud and remove the bowl and box (which, upon further reflection and eyeball sizing, would not fit him). I pace the apartment and eat two of the iguana's green beans and lima beans before I realize what I am eating, gag, and stand in front of a fan.
My shirt is a sponge and the sponge is fully saturated. My brow is cartoonishly covered in beads of sweat.
I consider the 12 year old Scotch in the cabinet. Another Pet-sitting Rule to break. I refuse to drink another man's fine Scotch; besides, booze will thin the blood and if I grab the beast, I'd probably bleed out before I made it home (besides ruining their wood floor).
I screw up all my heat-stroked courage. I grab a mug. What? I put the mug down. I wrap my left arm up in a small area rug and go into the breach again. I won't pick him up, I'll just "suggest" through his fear that he should move into the other room and then the cage.
I nudge him with a thin board.
Damn it, man! Like an immovable, squishy eighty pound beanbag.
I remove the rug, my arm is now covered in sweat and kitty litter. I feel like a total tool.
And that's when I see the white buckets. My white knight.
Slowly edge the bucket toward his face, scoop, scoop, scoop. "Come on little guy" Tap, ever so gently, his tail. "Easy buddy, it's okay." My legs are shaking quiver about to give out in panic.
He crawls into the bucket. Runrunrunrunrunrun through the bedroom into the living room, straight to the cage trap door, and sloooooowly pour him into his cage. Slam (and lock) trap door.
The cat is lying on top of the cage, panting; however, I am sure he is just overcome by laughing at me. The bird chirps (cheers). I sit on the back of the sofa, panting as well. I stare at the iguana. He crawls up to the third level of the cage and comes right up the the metal, staring me in the eye (this is odd because he usually only naps on his "security rock" when I am around). He cocks his head back and forth, his orange beady eyes probing into mine; and, sticks his tongue out at me. I move to the other side of the cage and he follows, again moving right up to the metal and sticks his tongue out many times at me. No flapping of the flap or nodding of the head.
What is this?
I feel a sort of bond. Was he actual lost, and is now thanking me for bringing him "home"?
I move back to the sofa edge, and he follows again. He licks his lips (?), flashes his tongue at me, and starts to eat. The cat yawns, the bird chirps, and I go home.
So, guys, if you're reading this: Enjoy the rest of your vacation!
Only 6 more days to go. :-)
Sunday, July 30, 2006
Tuesday, July 18, 2006
I awoke in sunlight after this dream. I didn't know what to think, how to feel. I stared at the ceiling for a while, stroking Lilly, trying to sort it out. I didn't.
Here's the dream before I awoke:
I'm sitting in my bedroom, on one of my unfinished dining chairs without a shirt. I'm wearing black jeans. The room is filled with the brightest sunlight, no shadows anywhere; the sun filled every niche and corner in the room, but didn't hurt the eyes. I kept looking around, wondering why it was so bright. The room then took a turn in feeling; instead of a bright and warm and sunny, it felt sterile like a fluorescent-lit surgery hospital room. I looked straight ahead and saw a short-haired blonde woman crawling toward me. She was dressed in a white blouse and white pants, and was looking at me with big beautiful eyes.
"How can you love me? I mean, look at my shoulders, my arms" I said, completely confused. I looked down at my arms. Covered in slashes gashes open bloody wounds. They looked like elongated red bubbly bomb craters in peach soil.
"I just do" she said, laying head on my shoulder, looking into my eyes.
I went to work.
At The Bank, Hash asked me to sneak out to a neighborhood Indian restaurant, McToodaas, for eggrolls and coffee for him.
He's cool, so I ducked out the door and took the alley to the main street. Nodded to a lady taking out the trash, skipped over puddles, and smoked a cigarette. When I popped out onto the main road, I saw two black teenage boys sauntering along the sidewalk. Didn't think anything of it except for the way they were yelling and walking: teens up to something.
I looked in the Indian windows: Sony electronics, saris, electricity converters, and strange-looking food. When I looked up to cross the main road to McToodaas, I saw this woman walking even with me. I think the boys had been yelling at her, but they were gone. She stopped in the middle of McToodaas' double doors.
I prepared to be hit up for change.
I crossed the street, sort of looking at her. She wore tight black pants with silver stripes and a denim jacket like my dealer in high school wore all the time. Dirty blonde hair.
When I came close, she asked "got a cigarette?"
I handed her the cigarette and lit it for her. She had deep brown eyes.
"Want a date?"
"Are you looking for a date?"
"Oh, um, no thanks, but have a good day--"
"Thanks for the cigarette, honey," and she walked away.
I bought the eggrolls and headed back to The Bank, feeling miserable for some reason.
Had I delayed or left earlier for Hash, this meeting never would have taken place. Was I meant to meet her?
A 15 second exchange, and I dwelt on it all day. Sadness, a physical depression swirling glob in the pit of my stomach. On the verge of tears for the rest of the day.
Am I looking for a Damsel in Distress to rescue? Am I looking for someone to save, since I can't even save myself? Was it just the "Man" in me pissed off at missing a "sure thing"?
She looked familiar, like someone from from my high school. Resembled remembered. I wanted to touch her, I wanted her to touch me.
Later that day, I went back to the corner looking for a place to go for lunch, half hoping to see her again, half dreading seeing her again. I had this strange urge to ask her out on a "real" date. Drinks on her day off? Interview her for My Cube? What was I thinking?
She looked like someone. Who? And then it hit me; she looked like the woman from the dream, and the woman from the dream looked like this woman with the star tattoo.
3rd "wanna date?" since I moved here to Chicago.
3rd time I said, "no thanks."
Monday, July 17, 2006
Tuesday, July 11, 2006
CNN.com - Mystic mushrooms spawn magic event - July 11, 2006
I hope my previous experiences don't disqualify me, no matter how positively biased I may be toward them.
3 caps in a Taco Bell Beef Meximelt, please and thank you.
Sunday, July 09, 2006
And I was doing so well, drinking water all day while doing domestic chores and such.
It's little boy-ish acts like these that probably explain why I'll be a bachelor till death, work low-life-low-paying jobs, and this blog has gone to shit.
Hell, I can't even be bothered to update my latest drinking adventures (coming soon).
Friday, June 30, 2006
I called Complex Carrie and Justin, to see if they wanted to come over and watch Where the Buffalo Roam (I had an urge to see it again), but was denied. A couple of beers and a few songs later, I've decided to go OUT. (Further!)
I'm feeling the pull of the beast of the city, the nag of the neighborhood; so my plan is to walk over to Clark Street and plant my ass at the first bar I find/discover.
I want to see what happens.
If anything at all.
Saturday, June 24, 2006
Wednesday, June 21, 2006
I know a great amount of time has passed with little to no updates. Sorry 'bout that. Since working at The Bank, my thinking about money has changed... a bit.
In the past, and really still, the focus is on how to make it paycheck to paycheck. Still holds true, but not as "by the skin of our teeth" close. Then, when you add-in being surrounded by coworkers in charge of million dollar Trust accounts and commercial loans, the scattered chatter about interest rates, an upcoming eligibility for a 401(k), and the rash of marriages and babies popping up around me and amongst my friends, I start to think about getting to that next step in my life. I'd like to have a place of my own, something to horribly decorate to my taste. Maybe even share it with someone I love.
But that fantasy looks just like that: a fantasy.
So, what have I been up to? Sinking into and tweaking this software. Freaking addictive, and an eye-opener. Sadly, it looks as though I'll run completely out of money in the year 2045 (would you stingy bastards click that Paypal button on the right already!); though I think that's because I didn't know how to convert some stocks into the program, or upcoming raises, and 13 other things.
But the eventual fall into total bankruptcy doesn't stop me from blowing hard-earned cash on these two (FUN) time-wasters: Guild Wars Factions and Battlefield 1942: The Complete Collection.
I may be a 35 year old doofus, wearing a tie, and working two jobs, but somewhere deep down inside there is still lives the boy who dreams of slaying dragons, rescuing fair-(mocha)-skinned maidens and boffing bar wenches (they are never at The Ho). Or blowing things up and securing the beach with a machine gun. (If you're on Factions online, let me know, I may start up a Guild; just look for The Lords of the Two Six Um, that's a hint, dude).
Saturday, June 17, 2006
Tuesday, June 13, 2006
With my boss and her boss and another coworker.
The coworker is L.S., who used to work with me at my part time job. This event came together as a way for D.BBoss to thank her for referring me to the job at The Bank. See, bank employees get $500 for employee referrals that stay employed at The Bank, but since she is hired by The Bank and not an actual Bank Employee, she gets squat. So that's nice of him.
Apparently, the main reason I'm invited is because he didn't want to go only with her.
"What are we gonna talk about?"
So, basically, I am there pretty much for conversation buffer/fodder. Whatever, right? He'll probably fund most of the beer, and I think he's smuggling in two huge bags of peanuts. It might be a fun night. I get along fairly well with my boss, Harley A.
And I dig free beer.
If any of you are at the game, look for a skinny guy in glasses and a cap (either a NY Jets cap or an O.U. cap): that'll probably be me, chugging awkward beers, leering at the ladies and asking things like "Sooo, how many innings are left?" or "Who wants to go out for a smoke?"
I'll try to let you know how it goes (and try to get some blackmail; erm, I mean photos).
Saturday, June 10, 2006
Wednesday, May 24, 2006
And this phrase goes through my head on a loop. I don't know where it came from (a Google search comes up with this). I find it interesting it's on a Sadness and Anxiety page.
"Death Camp Flowers."
"Death Camp Flowers."
"Death Camp Flowers."
What does it mean? Beauty among evil? Goodness can live in Bad Times?
I want to use this phrase in a poem or story, but the flow stops abruptly there:
"Death Camp Flowers."
Wednesday, May 17, 2006
Wait. Let me rephrase that: "...when my neighbor's door SLAMS open."
I hear her fly up the stairs and start POUNDING (there, got that one right the first time) on her upstairs neighbor's door. I hear him whip open the door and the following conversation ensues:
"Motherfucker, shut the fuck up!"
"Bitch, you shut the fuck up!"
"You got a whole living room here; you don't need to be pounding above my bedroom, bitch!"
"Fuck you, bitch....I oughtta...!"
"Go on, Bitch! Go on, Motherfucker, I dare you!"
"Get the fuck outta her, fucking bitch!"
"I pay rent, too, motherfuckin' bitch!"
"I should call the cops on you!"
"I should call the cops out you, bitch. I pay rent, too, ya know!"
At this point, I squint out the peephole, and see the two kids standing in the hall, looking up the stairs as she stomps down. Now, this neighbor is LOUD when she's just screaming for her kid to "take the fucking garbage out," but get her riled up like tonight, and I am sure "motherfuckers" in Bucktown can hear her shouting.
"Shut the fuck up, motherfucking crazy ass African bitch!" she bellows slamming the door; then, murmured yelling from within the apartment.
And that's when this song I've been downloading starts to play.
Friday, May 05, 2006
It's a long drive, but at least there's a cool radio station in the area!
Tuesday, April 25, 2006
I took notes, so sometime in the near future I'll get around to a round-up post or something.
Thanks for stopping by My Cube.
Thursday, April 13, 2006
I am looking to go to a 6.1 surround sound situation.
Small/thin front main speakers.
Looking for Clarity over Loudness.
Not too pricey, but something that will stand the test of time and moves.
I have a Onkyo TX-SR502 Receiver that will have a Playstation2 running through it acting as gaming and DVD.
Thursday, April 06, 2006
I like a lot what I've heard. I can see why writing a song like "Steady, As She Goes" would inspire one to form a band around it (according to the Amazon editorial blurb in the listing); it's catchy, driving and just a touch of that sad pre-emptive nostalgia that captures my ears, mind and heart. Sounds like The White Stripes only even more filled out with something that strikes me as a 70s anthem rock throbbing just under the skin.
Now fingers crossed I get to see them at the Empty Bottle, or The White Stripes again, for the 3rd time. Yippeee!
Steady as you go, friends.
Now, no need to freak out (am I talking to myself?), I'm just flowing fine, I suppose. I'm just trying to get a fix on new (old) habits, and I'm still acclimating myself to The Bank. I notice that, after taking employment at The Bank, I can feel myself slipping away, mentally, from The Retail Job. Hell, I snapped at a manager tonight, "Honey" A., the floor supervisor. Surprisingly this hasn't happened long ago, as she has a way of scrapping razor blades across an open nerve. She was just doing her job, but annoyingly. Shitty people skills, yo! Talk to me like a newbie at a job I've been sludging through for nearly four years, and I'll bark a little, you know?
On a better note, I'm still working out representing/getting my friends a show at The John Galt Gallery, inspired by aforementioned events here and here and here. Most of us got together at My Cube for a meet up and swapping of works, just so everyone knew who did what and such. I had fun, and I think it turned out somewhat productive (?).
At least, I got drunk around two in the morning after everyone left (and made it to The Retail Job on time on Sunday). Lots to learn, still, and lots of unanswered questions for The Gallery on behalf of my friends...my creative friends *sigh.*
I got to thinking about that mushroom trip again on the way to work: "Dead at 35" and "You're only a hub for others [to pass through]"
I'm 35 now.
But: maybe The Death I tripped was a metaphorical death. The Death of the Me I hate. I may not be creative, inspiring, interesting, or cool, but maybe I'm that guy. The "I gotta guy" guy. I may not succeed in life, but I'm "that guy" that helps others out. I am the hub that people pass through to get to the other side, to where they need to go. Maybe I'm a bridge for others (hopefully, not a floormat.), a stepping stone. I am beginning to see that we are All connected.
In any event:
I know creative friends.
I'm trying to get a show together for them in June.
I'm used to being alone.
I'm learning/trying to be a better Hub.
I realize that two weeks after I lay down under a headstone, I'll be forgotten, and that's okay. As long as I at least tried to help my friends and tried to make some sort of positive difference in the someone's life.
Those who can't do, teach, right? Or some such shit like that.
Friday, March 31, 2006
He's visiting friends in MO, and his flight got delayed, so he's stuck in Chicago for, like, eighteen hours.
Yipee! My wingman is in town for the night. His only jet-lagged request?
"Take me to The Ho."
So we go. And then he is gone, again.
Good to see you again, my friend.
The windows are open in My Cube, airing out the funky smell of winter, depression, spilled beer, and Lilly scent. A coolish breeze floats through the rooms.
And the first gunshot is heard in the neighborhood.
Saturday, March 25, 2006
Friday, March 24, 2006
From the moves of the blonde, I think they're listening to Shakira's song about how "The Hips Don't Lie."
Have a good weekend everyone.
Monday, March 20, 2006
The idea is to list out seven of my favorite songs. This is, like, the hardest question. First off, how do you boil it down to just seven? And, secondly, I'm the type of guy who answers these types of questions, and then remembers better answers around a week later.
Ah well, here are my seven...With some ties (in no particular order):
- "I Don't Care About You," "Fresh Flesh," "Let's Start a War" The Record by Fear (okay, really, their entire discography!).
- "Porch" or "Black" from Ten by Pearl Jam.
- "Troy" from The Lion and The Cobra or "Feel so Different" from I Do Not Want What I Haven't Got by Sinead O'Connor.
- "Fascination Street" from Disintegration by The Cure.
- "The Kiss" or "Shiver and Shake" Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me by The Cure.
- "Reach Down" or "Times of Trouble" from Temple of the Dog.
- Most of the songs from Sweet Oblivion by The Screaming Trees.
Okay, more than seven, but like I said, I'm not the best with these types of questions. I'll think of 333 more songs that make my heart pound and mind wander after I hit the publish post button.
Until then, I tag:
Have at it, boys!
Saturday, March 11, 2006
Waiting for ? 3
Originally uploaded by Mac(3).
"It's hard waiting for something when you don't know what it is."
Another one of those nights, after a couple of Becks, when I feel restless and bored. I want to go out; I don't want to stay in.
So I left a voicemail for M. and emailed Complex Carrie and Justin, but no one answered. They'd already left for either band practice or a birthday party. I couldn't think of anyone else to call on such short notice.
I wandered from couch to computer to kitchen and back. Lilly followed for a bit, then gave up and nestled into her chair. I did an Internal Shrug and changed clothes.
Off to The Ho.
Friday night at The Ho held the usual suspects: Larry bartending; the other bartender Marilyn sitting at the bar with a friend; and this other couple who are always there on Friday. I settled into a barstool a couple down from Marilyn, said hi to Larry and ordered the first dollar draft.
I wasn't interested in the various basketball games on the TVs, so I watched some PBS special on 50's pop music. On love songs. Ouch.
From my notes:
"Love songs. According to the music, life was easier then. Probably not. Feeling yearning for love which is becoming more and more and abstract, incomprehesible four letter word.
Why did I come here? Looking for what? To be drunk, force down the itchy Blue-haired Demons."
Marilyn and her friend are singing along to the songs on TV. She sways gently back and forth on her barstool. They talk about how they used to dance to these songs in their youth. How the music was "so much better back then."
I finish another beer and write:
"who am I trying to be? What am I doing here? Trying to be a Royko/Algren/DonLevy/Burkowski? Dingy bar and writing in a little notebook..."
One last beer, and I leave to find another local waterhole.
I pass The Lamp Post, but decide not to go in. I am not in the mood to feel isolated in a populated bar where the Chicagoian Blondes and Frat-boys glance and scoff at me. I walk the sidewalk to a bar I remember driving past a few times. My Place.
But my place is closed.
I let my feet take me toward Howard through some clipped grass, tree-lined neighborhood I've never seen before now. The streetlights seem gentle here and the breeze hushes across a mystery park. I pass a woman walking her German Shepard, and we exchange knods and smiles. It feels peaceful.
And then I walk onto Howard Avenue.
Cars roar past. A gang of boys yell at each other outside a seafood restuarant. Two different arrests are taking place within three blocks. I cut through an alley to avoide the boys and get away from the flashing blue lights piercing the night. Two more blocks down on Howard, another black teen is leaning forward on another police car as a detective cruiser speeds away toward the lake.
I finally come to a neon-lit bar. There is a bass thump coming through its wall of glass front. I pass by, peering in. A crowd. I pause to gather up some courage I need when entering an unknown bar, then enter the door.
A large black man cards me, and I notice a sigh reading "you must be 30 years of age to enter." I turn the small corner and go directly to the bar and look around.
Pool table, small round tables for four, DJ in the front, crowds of men and women dancing talking walking around, bottled wine in a glass-front fridge, and a bar that runs from the front of the place all the way to the back.
And, besides the one gay bald man in a too-tight T-shirt, I am the only white guy in the place.
[I have to go to a party now, so I'll try to finish this later]
Monday, March 06, 2006
I am my own niche in the workforce!*
(* please donate through my Paypal link, this job may be short lived)
Saturday, March 04, 2006
Thursday, March 02, 2006
Comment them some heartfelt congratulations as they deserve it!
My bestest Wingman is leaving the meat-market: I'll never meet the Sweet Betties now :-(
Wishing you two only the best, Fresh.
Wednesday, March 01, 2006
Made it out the door before the phone rang
Made it out the door before the phone rang
Knowing the time ain't gonna get me there quicker
Knowing the time ain't gonna get me there quicker
Don't bother me, I'm havin' a good time
Don't bother me, I'm havin' a good time
Don't know myself but now my back against the wall
Don't know myself but now my back against the wall
Workin' double shifts and not getting any sleep
Workin' double shifts and not getting any sleep
I finally found a day to spend on myself
I finally found a day but someone bought my health
Had a little money in my pocket for a minute
Had a little money in my pocket but it's gone
My time is runnin' out and my chances are few
It wouldn't look so easy if you only knew
The Stooges (self-titled)
Le Tigre This Island
Le Tigre (self-titled)
John Digweed and Sasha Communicate
And backordered Lady Soveriegn Vertically Challenged because a grime-y cockney accent gets me hot. Ha ha ha.
Off to bed.
Tuesday, February 28, 2006
My first office party went okay (as far as drinking with coworkers under Vitamin D-sucking fluorescent lighting in a tie can go). No vomiting, no doorway casualties (minus that one slight slip on the back stairs), no attempting to snog The Bank President against the copy machine.
D. BBoss got all excited and animated; he's one of those guys that lights up and shouts stuff like, "I cracked my first beer at 4:59, man!" in a coach-type of way. It turns out he got promoted into the position being vacated by the J.D.
20 bottles of wine and a case of beer chilling in garbage bag-lined Mail Totes filled with ice (that I bought, thank you very much), plastic champagne glasses, half the office's lights turned off (mood lighting!) and we were off. A Power Point presentation of J.D. in various bank photos on a screen and some gift opening and a farewell speech started the Inner-office Happy Hour(s).
Actually, on the whole, I had a pretty good time; and, got fucking hammered. Into the third Miller, I realized I'd skipped lunch. I hung with my office mate Big J. and some Scarf dude from Accounting. In between small talk, D. BBoss' shouts and murmurs, 93X on the portable radio (turned to 11), and my boss, Harley A. screaming, "Bartender! Hello! D. BBoss and J.D. need another drink" at me, I still found plenty of time to ogle the pack of Rumanian and Eastern Block ladies that work in the office....I'd like to fill their ink cartridges, knowwhatImean? Wink wink. ;-)
About ten seconds after The Bank President left, Harley A., myself, and a couple of others lit up cigarettes, and the Rumanian/Eastern Block Beauties finally started drinking some wine. Blue smoke under buzzing bright lights.
Soon everything began to blur and whizz around my head. At one point, I had to pantomime to one of the cleaning crew's Pretty Petite Polish women to key me into my office to get my coat.
Things were cleaned up, the cleaning company had showed up, so five of us split for some bar called Mullen's. I drove Big J. home and met the rest at the bar. They'd already finished their appetizers and were deep into work-speak. I hadn't a clue about what/who they were talking about, so I bought a Guinness and pulled up a barstool to the table. D. BBos reprimanded me for paying for my own beer.
Pretty much from here on out, I'm in my Nod-and-Smile Routine: "Better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than open your mouth and prove it."
Scarf and D. BBoss left, remaining time at the bar consisted of me on my barstool throne sipping the Guinness and staring down at the smeared ketchup and half-eaten chicken fingers left on the table while Harley A. and J.D. leaned on the back of me discussing more job stuff. I considered passing out, but thought that may not be the best impression for my boss.
Finally time to go; however, there remained one last test for the evening: I had to drive Harley A. and J.D. back to The Bank, to their cars. In my shitty, smoke reeking, Little Red Zipper.
I found out the following Monday, I didn't need to do any "damage control" to anyone in the office. Harley A. said I did fine. She also admitted that I wasn't the only one doing the One-eyed Squint on the way home.
I woke up the Saturday to discover this self-written note laying on my wallet:
Another time I relate to this Age Old Question.
I also found out I got four hours overtime on this paycheck because I didn't clock out for the party. Oops.
Harley A. said, "it's cool... you little shit!" and laughed.
Friday, February 24, 2006
This week gave me my first taste of a 55 or so hour week. It doesn't taste good. Actually, it's not that rough, since my now Part-time Retail gig has been slow as Hell this week and last week. Colorado J.B. gives me "two weeks" until I quit the retail job. The gauntlet has hit the floor! I am determined to juggle the double job for at least a month, just to show her up. Besides, I want to see where I stand after my first pay check from The Bank.
So after only 9 days on the job, I've been invited to TWO work parties. The first one, I had to skip because I closed at the other job tonight. The H.R. Director who hired me is moving to (fucking) Florida. The second one is Friday night. In the Accounting Department. In the office. Beer, wine, and pizza.
And I made the "Select Guest List." That's what I'm talking about, baby.
Okay, probably because my boss and boss's boss are throwing the shin-dig.
And I have to pick up bags of ice.
It's being thrown in order to give my boss's boss's boss a send off (keeping up here? hee hee Nicknames to be figured out later) as he's retiring, or got promoted, or quit, or something. Don't ask me, I only met the guy once.
So let's see here: free booze+ new coworkers+ won't have eaten for hours+ Friday with Saturday off= Possible danger given my love for the Barley and Hops.
I predict my tongue shall loosen, my coworkers discover just how weird I am, I drop a bottle on the floor, crash into a door threshold in front of The Bank owner and/or President, and vomit in the breakroom bathroom.
Should be fun.
Monday, February 20, 2006
Never a communication breakdown.
Soon, I'll be looking sexy in a WLUW T-Shirt and sounding cool with The Subways CD (their Myspace).
Consider adding your own couple of bucks.
Saturday, February 18, 2006
- Shirts and Ties.
- Another file box.
- Day planner/calendar/address book.
- Punk : The Definitive Record of a Revolution
- The White Stripes - Under Blackpool Lights
- The Dresden Dolls - Paradise
- X - Live In Los Angeles
- Punk - Attitude
- Rise Above: 24 Black Flag Songs to Benefit the West Memphis Three
- Tones on Tail - Everything!
- I Ching
- Dream Dictionary : An A to Z Guide to Understanding Your Unconscious Mind
- Peyton Amberg : A Novel by Tama Janowitz
Even with the various Gift Certificates, let's just say I cannot wait for my first pay check.
Tuesday, February 14, 2006
Ironically, this popped up in my mailbox today. A sort of a slap-in-the-face for a single guy who hasn't used one of these bad boys in a long while, don't you think?. It isn't too often, though, one opens an unmarked box and laughs out loud (slightly bitterly) at one's mail.
Ah, well, Happy Valentine's Day. If any of you lovely ladies wish to experience some "shared pleasure," or just wants to teach an old dog(gystyle) new tricks, let me know as I am now available after 5 p.m. nearly everyday and always on Saturday. It's got Warm Sensations lubricant, for Fuck's Sake!
Monday, February 13, 2006
I shall have left a trail of teeth around the apartment floor, like breadcrumbs along the path of my morning ritual of getting ready, from the combination of being cold and nervous. For today is my first day of that bank job I mentioned getting earlier. The only positive spin of no heat is it got me up in plenty of time to get ready and get there on time. At least the oven works; 300 degrees with the door open takes some of the edge off, but mostly in the small kitchen. I'll have to set up a small fan to heat more of the apartment, Ghetto-style.
My first pay check may go to eBay if I can find an apartment complex-sized heater for sale; I hope it fits in my Little Red Zipper car.
Okay, must go chip the ice off the showerhead.
Sunday, February 12, 2006
Friday, February 10, 2006
Originally uploaded by Mac(3).
But I feel I should give the guy props, him being from my hometown and all. Into the NFL for only two years, and he gets the big shiny Superbowl ring: nice job.
I only rooted for the Steelers because of him; some sort of "You can never leave home" Complex, I'm sure. My boys didn't do so well this year, so this makes for a nice ending of the football season.
In addition, I think my Uncle Doc taught him in high school, or at least knew him/of him, and said he's a truly nice guy. My parents go to church with his parents, and they report the same. That's a good and rare thing to hear, and I'm glad for it.
The funny thing is my parents couldn't give two shits about football or any sports, in general, when I was growing up, but went to Bowling Green or Toledo to watch games when Ben (on the Miami University of Ohio) played to cheer him on [screw M.U., go Ohio U.!]
The weird thing is, while watching Ben's interview on Letterman, I was struck by how familiar he seemed. His mannerisms and speech actually reminded me of people from my hometown and Birth State.
And I kind of missed it.
But I'm staying in Chicago, and rooting for the NY Jets.
Thursday, February 09, 2006
Monday, February 06, 2006
Originally uploaded by Mac(3).
This morning, I awoke freezing in my heated apartment. Even with a heavy comforter, I shivered in the morning sunlight streaming through the blinds, covered in gallons of nightsweat.
Lilly wasn't next to me on the bed like usual. I felt sad.
And then I remembered the dream:
In the dream, Lilly lay sleeping under my dining table (which had been strangely moved onto my living room rug). I lay down next to her. I was mad at her for some reason. I reached out and grabbed her gently, then twisted her head and hind legs. She felt rubbery, like a fury Plastic Man toy, as I bent her head down and her back legs back and up.
She moaned once in a low voice of sadness and pain. I realized what I had done and picked her up, cradling her to my breast, burying my head into her belly as I started to cry. Her head wouldn't straighten up. I had hurt her and couldn't fix what I had done. In the dream, I knew I would never stop crying.
What had I done?
Saturday, February 04, 2006
So, it comes as no great surprise that it turns out I like Grime. Thanks to Stereogum, I am getting a good dose of this music that I'd heard of, but never really heard en mass before now. Here's the link to the stream to which I am referring (second link down).
If I start two-stepping around the living room, I'll just pretend the puffs of grey are dry-ice fogs on the dancefloor, eh mate?
Tuesday, January 31, 2006
I got the job!
Now I just need to put in my semi-two weeks notice at work (I am going to attempt the dreaded Two Jobs At Once gig: Hello No-Doz!) and figure out just what in the Hell a Purchasing Agent/Clerk does for a living... and not get fired.
Starting February 13th, I'll be freaking out from 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, much to Adrian's disapproval (his comment). I didn't post a reply to his "rant" (hee hee) because I didn't necessarily disagree with it. Partly put off by his bluster (tuff luv?), but partly put off by myself, by my fears and laziness when it comes to writing. Obviously, (mostly to myself) writing is what I want to do, what I enjoy, what I am "meant" for in life, yet I keep putting it off for another day. Why? Ah, well, that is probably another post of extreme length for another day...fuck! I did it again!
Anyway, wish me luck on my upcoming new job, please. I'm back to wearing a tie and having to remove my earrings; stupid conservative banking bastard standards.
Also, in the works, so to speak. I am slowly trying to become a "Guest Curator." After Complex Carrie invited me to an art show opening/benefit at The John Galt Gallery (thanks to Cybele for the link), I've become slightly obsessed with this idea which struck me that night. I want to gather some of my cool, creative chums for a show. Cybele sent me a bursting-at-the-seams email with some clues of how to do such a thing. I feel a tiny bit closer to figuring it out; so, hopefully someday you'll read a post asking you to Come to my show.
Yeah, that'd be cool, Beavis.
And, on an even slower note (my fault), I am thinking thinking thinking of trying a spoken word thing with M. On CD, not on a stage, thank you. If any past posts on My Cube or on my other blog catch/caught your ear or eye, let me know. I'm curious if anything here is good enough (with proper editing) for production.
Just an idea.
Off to Dreamland: sleep tight!
Sunday, January 29, 2006
Life in Black and White
Originally uploaded by Mac(3).
I declined to meet up with Doodlehead and M. to play Halo2 today; instead, hanging out around the house waiting for the phone to ring.
The HR Director S.B. had left a voicemail on Friday for me to call his cell phone on Saturday. He wanted to talk about the mail room job I'd interview for twice. My call this morning went straight to voicemail, so the game of tag continues.
I distracted myself from the nail-biting wait by updating my Flickr account (the above photo being the last of them. All caught up, YAY!) Hope you like them.
Okay, it's after midnight, so I'm gonna finish this beer and go to bed. Work tomorrow.