Thursday, January 28, 2010

Dear Mr. Salinger:

So first of all, I think if you hadn't been such a hermit, you might have really appreciated the phenomenon of Twitter, and everything it had to say about your death today. But I might just be projecting my own curiousity onto you, because I think that's what people do with your books, they identify with them so much that they think you were just like them and are all up in their head/heart/adolescent bullshit. I wonder if that's the real reason you didn't talk to anyone, because you got tired of hearing how much they "related" to you. Or maybe you were secretly repulsed that you were in fact so much like the general populace, they got you. Maybe Catcher In The Rye took away your sense of specialness. And if so, even that would lift you up in my eyes, because most famous pop authors would just deny it and embrace the adoration instead of running away. But I did hear you were kind of a real asshole. Mabye that's why people related to you. The real lesson of your books is that everyone is an asshole.

If I ever become a famous writer like you, I don't think I'll be hermitting away any time soon. But it's nice that you were famous enough to have that choice. I mean, I don't see any point in my life where I'll have the choice to not ever have to be around people, never have to have a job, and can stay in my house all day independently wealthy. Lots of people saw that as a waste of your talent, but whatever. Everybody wants to make a million for their own private reasons. I'm extremely jealous you got that choice at all. You are an inspiration to young writers like me, that someday, if I work really hard at writing a book for teenagers that isn't about vampires, I won't have to talk to anyone ever again.

So I'm not really sad you died. I mean, you were ninety fucking one. Are you kidding me? I probably won't make it to eighty. Also, I probably won't write famous books. Or have NYT critics salivate over every rumour about my continued existence. So really, when everyone gets all weepy about your extremely timely demise, I kinda of want to tell them to fuck off. You lucky fucking bastard.

Also, open invitation to haunt me.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

No seriously, sometimes I pretend it's Athena. It could happen.

Do you think nostalgia is a handy tool or a bane on artistic expression or option C because people usually list three things?

First of all, fair warning. I recently discovered I am allergic to all over the counter pain medications, and I got a killer headache today, so I self medicated with a large amount of Irish coffee. This did not make my headache go away, but it did form the magical trifecta which is 1.drunk pain 3.overly caffeinated. Also I may or may not be in the throes of a new relationship (answer: I am), so add nostalgia into the mix and I think we're gonna get a Crazy Cake. Crazy Brownies at the very least. Mmmm, brownies...

My first thought when I read this question was "isn't all artistic expression a form of memory, and therefore wouldn't nostalgia be a potent ingredient in that?" But I understand where you're coming from. You're posing that perhaps the predisposition we have to gild the past taints our ability to appreciate the present? And by gild, I actually mean positively and negatively, even though I know gild is supposed to be a good word right? Gold, precious, pretty ect. Maybe the right word is simplify. We simplify our past into easily defined images. Hippies. WWII. Hair Bands. Pioneers. Abraham Lincoln. Mad Men.

I think the easiest example of this is musical. Musicians and listeners can easily fall into the trap of being in love with a past style and giving it precedence over anything modern. I think some of us actively fight aging by trying to be the opposite, to be as with it as possible. But the other army, the army of vinyl classic, definitely exists.

Whatever. My answer is that every form of artistic expression draws from your memory, and nostalgia is your relationship with the past. It can be a bad relationship, or the one that got away, but until you make peace with it, you can't utilize it properly. If you ignore it, you will make the same mistakes. If you spend too much time thinking about it, you will freeze yourself in time.

I recently saw two movies that relate. The first one was Book of Eli, that apocalyptic Denzel vehicle that was, hello, secretly about God. I say secretly, because there was no clue in the trailer that this was a Christians Are Awesome movie. Otherwise, I probably would have waited until it was on DVD. So this is a End of the World movie, which means it was basically all about nostalgia. Look how great everything was before we fucked it up, and we didn't even realize it, and now we have to rebuild it by treasuring everything from our past. Here is an example of nostalgia (because what is religion except nostalgia for the time when we knew God?) gone wrong. The message of the movie was that the Bible was integral to rebuilding civilization and common decency. What the movie was advocating was a return to the appreciation of the old things, and their necessity. But I think people had the right idea to burn the book that caused the Wars, and I kind of liked the ending for the obscurity it implied. But I won't tell you more. Cause I think that would be a legitimate spoiler. As if I haven't already. Point it, too much nostalgia blinds you to the opportunities of the present.

Second was Inglorious Basterds. This was an example of nostalgia being taken lightly and fucked with as wished. Various dopes who actually believed the storyline was real aside, this movie was as playful an act of fiction as you could make it. And that's the role I think nostalgia should play for artists. It should be an inspiration, but not a dictation.

I'm sorry. It's hard to be clear when you have monster trucks fighting inside your skull. It might be Athena struggling against my bone, but usually headaches are real creative killers.

What is the Wasteland?

The Wasteland is the epitome of nostalgia, but also abandonment of all structural and societal decency.

Ask me anything

Friday, January 22, 2010

I think Party of Five meets Facts of Life is more like it.

I got sucked into watching "Life Unexpected" yesterday and now I'm afraid the fetus I miscarried in high school is going to show up on my doorstep demanding that I sign its emancipation papers. How should I proceed when and if that happens?

I totally got sucked into watching that shit too. It's because whoever came up with that "Juno meets Gilmore Girls" line is a fucking genius. Here's how your head processes that line: "This doesn't look like a show I would ever watch in a Million Years, but yet I watch Gilmore Girls reruns every time they're on, because frankly Rory has the cutest clothes ever, and even though I didn't think Juno was the best movie ever and Diablo Cody can kinda of suck it, it was cute enough to watch on a weekday night. SO I'll watch this. Also that lead guy kind of looks like the guy from General Hospital." Genius.

Back to your question. First, I did not realize that girl was actually her miscarriage. I thought they just gave her up for adoption. Knowing she's a dead fetus makes me like the show a whole lot more. I had sorta vowed to never watch it again because Lux is not really a name. However, Lux can totally be the name of a reincarnated miscarried fetus who's potential spirit was cast into the body of an android and sent to the Pacific Northwest as part of a complicated plot to sabotage the American Family.

In light of this, I think the only appropriate response when your fetus shows up would be to pin it to a wall with a nine iron. Because otherwise you hate America.

Here's my question, B: Why are mustaches so creepy? All other forms of facial hair are kinda hot, but seeing a dude with a thick mustache is uber ewe! Even those pencil thin ones, ugh. ~D

I am not a huge fan of facial hair, but I recognize that on some guys, its an improvement. A mustache by itself though is never an improvement. Unless you are Cary Ewes, in which case you should not only flaunt the mustache but also Facebook me and we'll totally go hang out. You're probably not though.

I think it's funny that you put thick mustaches ahead of thin ones in the "EW" category. I think it's far worse to be trying and failing to grow a mustache, than it is to simply have a successful one. I mean, a mustache is bad enough. You don't really need to also show the world you never hit puberty. Also, I associate pencil thin mustaches with villains who are trying to tie people to trains and can't even do that right. Emasculating all around, people.

Mustaches creep people out because they are not in fashion anymore, which means only old and lame people wear them. And nobody wants to have sex with someone who is not only elderly, but can't keep up on style. Which probably also means they are old and poor too. People with money have other people to tell them what's up. It's also possible that they have a fantasy where they are secretly a wrestling hero battling addiction and struggling to let God, joy, and true love into his life. Ew.

Ask me anything

A Slice of Humanity's Eating Disorder

This morning, driving back from a friends house, I stopped at Dunkin Donuts for coffee. In front of me in the drive thru line was this white crossover car. Like, an older one. It had a bumper sticker that said "I love Greyhounds" with this extremely old illustration of a greyhound head. It looked like an illustration out of Nancy Drew.

This car was sitting there ordering for like five minutes. I was rediscovering The Beta Band, so I didn't mind. I hate when people get impatient in the drive thru line. You're fat, I'm fat, just slow the fuck down asshole. But then we drove up to the window and the only thing this person got was a very large sundae. Like, a huge sundae.

I am all about ice cream, but it was 9am on a Friday morning. So ice cream really means that someone in the car was very upset. Sad but true, I would bet money on it. I couldn't see who was in the car, so I don't know if there was a passenger in there. Maybe some girl who just got dumped. Or found out he was cheating. Or just had a really bad hospital stay and was just getting out. Or preparing to go in. It could have been some kids birthday. Maybe the kid's grandmother just died. It could have been a guy too. I suspect there are lots of guys out there who emotionally eat and they probably always do it alone too.

But what I'm most afraid of is that her dog died.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Okay, no, but seriously, I need to go to sleep

Oh YouTube. You have a stupid name. You suggest stupid shit for me all the time (I swear I only watched those Jesus Christ Superstar clips once!). Embedding disabled by request makes me want to BURN THE WORLD DOWN.

But you still keep me up to 1am reminding how much my taste in music really sucks. I mean, rocks. Rocks a lot.

1. This song has been stuck in my head for the last two years. I love the "when we met I should have said you're like a sister to me" and the drop there.

2. Stuck in my head since BIRTH. Go ahead, DON'T SING. DON'T THINK ABOUT THE ROLLER SKATING RINK. Do think about how much you wish you had that lip gloss.

3. Remember? Rhianna used to have hair? And flesh on her face? And was still not human but hadn't been separated from the Continuum completely? I like to think this was her final cry for help. But robots don't need help.

4. This video is painful to watch and yet this song is SO fucking good. Fuck you Biz Markie.

5. True Story: If I start listening to Bill Withers, I will continue to listen to him for at least an hour. I will play this song at least 5 times in that hour. I will sing in a different pitch every time, and sometimes I sing it to my cats. I wonder if he ever sang it to his cats?

6. God, this was such a good show. This was one of the best shows. This was one of the best albums. I miss you Stellastarr*. Come back and be hot and small again.

7. Oh. Remember when we used to go to parties? And Much Music was Canadian? And I got really fucked up and made you watch this song every time it came one, because it made me happier than anything in 1996 could hope to do? And my favorite time of day for like two weeks was the Countdown, where this, and Prozac, and Soul Division would all be right around the same place. Which was like thirtieth. But still.

Oh the places we'll go! Oh the people we'll know!

I kept telling myself I didn't need to worry about shoveling the driveway, because January was coming, and in the second or third week of January it would thaw and melt all the snow away. I had better things to do, like visit swamps with boys. Nobody believed me. "But it's January! In Cleveland!" Yes, I know. And it's thawed at this time every year I can remember. Then I realized that my plan for this year should be to get a Farmers Almanac and track how often it is right. I should schedule my days off from work according to the Almanac, which is what, the collective wisdom of the ancient farming industry right? Don't they have prophets and oracles, deep inside a mountain in Wyoming, predicting these things for me? I have no idea where to even get an Almanac. I probably have to sacrifice a goat and three sheaves of barley, then reach into a black dimension with a special glove to pull one out. Or go to Wooster. Which is basically the same thing.

I want to live here, between the two empires. That is not a house, it's a covered bridge, but I would make it seem like home. I would hang paintings and doilies, and have a pot of something nice and suspect boiling on the stove. I would spend all day creating riddles to stump supplicants and gathering cattails for soap. See, I guess what I'm saying is, I want to be the nice ogre who lives under the bridge. Or the giant creepy nanny goat, whichever story you prefer.

This is a museum of the future. Meaning, it will be a museum, in the future, when train trestles and sewer lines seem as anachronous as the huge stone furnaces they built to make steel, or the canals that created state lines. Children will come here on field trips with parents, and stare at the rusting girders and think of pioneers with dirty hands and bad teeth and terrorizing steam engines and the dirty dirty waste disposal system at the beginning of the century. Then they will throw rocks at the frozen creek, to break the ice, and toss their gum at sleeping fishes and carve little pictures in rocks. They will get bored and cry to go back to their warm dormitories. Cause kids are ungrateful little shitheads.

Sewer mint green will someday again be a very fashionable color.

That electric pole is either about to, or never going to, fall down.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

I am Available for Parties

I love when people tell me what to write. I also love shameless self-promotion. That said, the lovely Ms. Serendipitist from Twitter let me write a guest post on her blog, so you should go read it there. Also, if you want me to write a post on your blog? Ask me. Cause I will do anything with my name on it. But you have to give me a topic, otherwise you have to fill out a waiver.

Go read this thing about the End of the World.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Last Night Akron Tried to Kill Me, Like Always

My friend Todd is a bassoonist. I don't know if you're supposed to put "classical" bassoonist, cause I don't know if there's any other kind? But that's what he is. He plays in orchestras around the country, jets off to exciting places like Wisconsin and Florida. He's got dark curly hair and a gorgeous poised "I look like a ballerina" girlfriend. He brews beer. He's living the dream. Anyway. Bassoonist. We love Todd.

So last night, he got me a ticket to one of his performances with the Akron Symphony. I was going to meet up with some of my other friends before the show, but I ended up running out of my house late, big surprise. I'd never been to EJ Thomas Hall before, because in general I try to keep my time in Akron succinct and to the point. Akron tries to trap you with one way streets and despite having had to drive there for my birth certificate multiple times*, and various forays out to college dance bars, I have yet to learn anything about the layout of downtown Akron. At all. I'm convinced the damn streets move like that MC Escher picture of the stairs, floating back and forth like buoys on the rough waves of fucking Summit County. Maybe it's the leftover fumes of Goodyear that turn me around, but every experience I've had in Akron can be boiled down to this: "how the fuck do I get off the Akron U campus? Why does this building look exactly like the four buildings I just passed where I also couldn't turn left? Is Exchange street in fact an alternate dimension with no beginning or end point?"

I finally got to the Hall, but couldn't find the parking lot, so I walked in the lobby 5 minutes late (after the valets finally just let me take one of their spaces since I looked like I was about to cry after curbing my car pulling into the damn garage), and had to wait until the first pause before I could go in and find my seat. The performance was beautiful, Todd's principal piece was wonderful. I actually learned what a bassoon sounds like, which sounds ignorant**, but really, it's not an instrument I see a lot separate from the whole orchestra, right? So it was like a good class field trip, one in which we went out to drink later. I did find the bar much easier. Hung out with my friends for a little, told Todd he was wonderful ect., admired Todd's girlfriends ability to look French all the time. The risotto balls at Bricco are great, the fried pickles are good but not spectacular. Then we all got up to go home, and went outside.

Into the deepest fog ever. Like, if ever there was a fog that made you think there was an alien attack or that something evil this way comes, this was it. It was all over the city in thick grey soupiness, which was fine and fitting for flitting my way back the highway, cause Akron matches that abandoned train line feel. But once on 77 and headed home, it became a problem. You couldn't see more than ten feet in front of you. Worse, a large stretch of the Bop back to Coney is street light less deer farm country. I had to turn my brights on for literally the first time in my entire time owning this car. Which meant I had to find the brights. The lone car in front of me kept disappearing into wormholes and reappearing randomly, so I went fifty the whole 45 minutes back, convinced I would hit a deer, run off the road, have to hitch a ride in the fog, and end up a news story, or wrapped in duct tape in a Fairlawn basement.

According to my friend, this is what happens when the lake isn't frozen over yet, the Blind Fog creeps over the valley and throws you back into the Country Primeval.

Eventually I crawled out of the muck into the Cleveland lights. I picked up my friend, who was biking back from a bar, so I parked on his street and waited for ten minutes, during which I saw 1 drug deal and 2 gay prostitutes. Oh Ohio City. Oh Akron. Oh Ohio how hard you try to remind us we are only settlers here, and that your weather patterns, your underground rivers, your glacial history and wet future all still exist despite our best attempts at infrastructure.

*This is why Akron tries to kill me, because I was born there, and it is my Achilles Heel Zone and I become powerless and weak when in it's grip.
** I am not in fact saying the bassoon sounds ignorant, even though that's what the sentence structure implies. Bassoons sounds very smart.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Dude, that hamster is gone.

Why do I drink so much? Be honest.

I don't know why you in particular drink so much, but it probably falls under one of four cliches:

a) You are insecure and unhappy, and drinking makes you feel like people like you, which is true only if they are drunk as well.

b) You are insecure and unhappy, and you hate your life and wish you had the balls to actually eschew your responsibilities and end up in a gutter somewhere, but you're a chickenshit who's afraid of disappointing someone, though you can't quite pinpoint who, since no one loves you.

c) You are an asshole who thinks going out to bars all the time makes you an interesting person, which is funny, since you drink as much as you do because you are so fucking bored by going to bars all the time.

d) You recognize the fact that people are mostly unbearable and ugly, so you drink in order to tolerate having a love life.

I personally drink as much as I do because the doctors told me if I didn't? My heart would stop working. Also my vagina.

an email from one of our customers in Mexico had a quote under the email signature that read: "Todo Materiales es territorio..." (material is territory?) what is he trying to tell me?

To keep your hands off his pudding cup. Also, he may have pissed on it.

How soon should I give up on my hamster ever returning and just buy a new one?

If this is who I think it is, I'm very disappointed in you. You've only had that damn hamster for like a month.

Well look, hamsters aren't like cats or dogs. they don't "return". You either catch the fucker, or you go to the store and buy another one that looks just like it, and pray to whoever you believe in that the little rat isn't pregnant. Also, they are all pregnant. All the time. Your former hamster is probably popping out babies under your couch as we speak. The good news is, she's also eating them.

See, your hamster doesn't love you. It doesn't even feel loyalty to you as the Grand Bringer of Food. Your hamster may, in it's little tiny hamster neuron paths, see you as some sort of Force of Nature that blows thru, dumping seeds and occasionally scaring the crap pellets out of it, But even that is probably giving rodents too much credit. We're always looking to humanize mice, and I'm not sure why. There's so many children's books with mice as these anthropomorphic mutants who wear clothes and go on adventures. There's Mickey Mouse, who now that I think about it, has really waned in popularity recently. Dare I declare his unofficial death? Someone at Disney probably dropped him, and he ran under the bookshelf, and they're waiting for him to come home. Mickey's gone guys. He is off making babies to eat.

I used to have a gerbil named Mickey when I was a little girl. He was fat and brown, and he had a live in boyfriend I named Pembrook, after some anthropomorphous mouse character in a book I read who's hobby was manufacturing Dandelion Wine and hanging out in Times Square. I may have confused it with a biography of Dylan. So Mickey lived a fuck long time. Like at least 6 years. He was really ancient when my cat finally got to him, like going gray even, and who ever sees a gerbil live that long? They lived in an aquarium set up on a nightstand in my bedroom, and how the cat got to them is a mystery, since the aquarium base took up the exact table space, leaving no room to jump up there unless you jumped the five feet straight up to actually land in the aquarium, which is probably what Biscuits did. Mickey actually didn't get eaten. Instead he had a heart attack. Pembrook unfortunately ended up being taken to the basement and presumably tortured. I kept Mickey's body in the freezer a lot longer than I probably should have.

Ask me anything

Thursday, January 14, 2010

If I was Diane Rehms, this would be a more relevant roundup

So one of my friends came up to me the other day and said "I don't understand your blog anymore." I don't know, I think it's pretty easy. I can't think of anything real to write about, so I let strangers on the internet ask me banal questions and spend five minutes a day answering them. But whatever, apparently he wants to know actual things going on in my life.

Well, we can talk about my love life. I can make a list for you. Lists are easy.
I currently have:
3 guys I would go on a date with immediately if they were at all interested in me, which they are not.
2 guys who are interested in me.
1 guy who I think about a large portion of the day, in a happy, turned-on, buzzed sort of way.
1 guy who I think about a large portion of the day, in a sad, unhappy, also kind of turned-on sort of way
2 of the above mentioned guys have the same name.
1 Nuva ring stuck in up there, that I had to use my vibrator to push into a deep enough place until I felt fairly certain it was not going to fall out. And I'm still not sure about it.
5 pamphlets on birth control that might be made into some sort of artwork. Planned Parenthood is mass murdering trees.

Dating is a weird thing, a weird awkward thing. And it's strange coming out of a long relationship into a short casual one, cause I feel like I'm being too comfortable. I had to remind myself to not walk around completely naked, and I had to somewhat clean my house and maybe even keep it somewhat clean. I have to not talk about my cats all the time. I immediately want to fall back into old habits and expectations, and I constantly have to tell myself "he's the new guy, not the old guy." But it's fun, in a weird awkward way. I'm getting there. It's easier and harder than I thought it would be.

I spend most of my day in the house working. I have not shoveled my driveway yet because I'm counting on the Mid January thaw to bail me out. I'm constantly impressed by how big our icicles get in Cleveland, and expect one to kill me any day now.

I'm broke as a joke. That's nothing new.

My hair is getting really long. It needs to be cut down. I might need to call the city tree workers to come do it.

I have a lot more phone conversations with friends these days, and it reminds me of being in high school and spending hours on the phone with someone you just saw all day. Most of those conversations are about other friends, which is also very high school.

My downstairs neighbors moved out, and even though I can now make as much noise as I want, I generally don't, out of habit. Also, I've started locking the downstairs door, because I realized I'm in this house all alone now. I actually realized this when I saw that new guy was locking my door every time he left, which I don't do and really nobody does. It's funny how something like that means a lot to me.

So I guess to sum up my life right now, I'm in the midst of trying to break a bunch of habits. It's like being in self-imposed rehab. I'm about to break out the post-it notes any moment now.

My mother is taking donations to an orphanage in Mexico she's visiting next month, and I'm making a half hearted attempt to help her, even though everyone is all about Haiti right now. No one thinks about Haiti when there isn't a natural disaster, even though it's fucked all year round.

John Oliver is quickly becoming my new favorite.
I'm listening to a lot of crap, and wish I had some music that wasn't crap, but it all sounds like crap to me these days.
I'm making a bowling victory belt for work, don't ask.
I'm addicted to Starbucks double shots, and I've been living off of cheese quesadillas because it's the easiest thing to make. I do actually have some vegetables in the fridge. I think my gums are telling me I have scurvy, so I'm trying to correct that. I recently bought a bottle of siracha for my fridge, and use it constantly.


Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Ear Eels are totally a real thing.

my irreplaceble boss has this way of making me drop what im doing to work on a task, saying "...didn't I tell i would give you this" or something and then running away to a conference call or some other little crisis in the office. Is this normal?

I'm confused as to why your tone suggests that you could have your boss fired, and yet choose not to, because they're so valuable.

Is your boss irreplaceable because he/she knows how to spell irreplaceable?

People don't just run away to conference calls or crises. Unless they are a superhero. Is your boss wearing suspiciously thick glasses to hide their superior physique? Do their office clothes resemble an outfit from Mad Men? If so, you might want to consider falling in love with them to protect yourself when the Big Bad Aliens come to town. But don't have sex with them, or your vagina might be blown out by their super sperm. I don't know what the male equivalent of this would be? Squeezed to death by their super vag?

Otherwise, your boss is probably doing regular boss stuff. And listed pretty high among regular boss stuff is "giving your underlings work to do." So you should probably just do it and be thankful you have a job. Unless they ask you to guard some seemingly worthless trinket with strange alien cryptographs on it. Or look directly into their eyes.

Are there any questions you've received thus far that you haven't answered and, if so, why?

My secrets safe, in my secret safe, on my secret base.

In 100 years, what currently endangered species will have made such a comeback as to be considered a dangerous nuisance?

This is a hard one.
On one hand, the albatrosses are totally coming for us.
On the other hand, the Alabama Leather Flower is way funnier. Alabama. Leather. Flower.
Tough as an alligators tongue, soft like Paula Deen's right pinky.

And of course, there's always Dave Matthews.

How do I stop the morons around me from liquefying my brain? FYI: I'm outnumbered

Moron, people can't liquefy your brain. Only ear eels can do that.

I mean, unless you've watched too much Real Housewives. Which is a proven method of waking up the North American ear eel from it's hibernation.
In which case you should start wearing a helmet and carrying a broken bottle tied to a broomstick, to keep them from getting too close to your sweet strawberry skull slushie. They will all leave you alone then. And you will have more time to watch Bravo.

FYI Jersey Shore makes it pistachio flavored.

Ask me anything

Monday, January 11, 2010

I would like the Law and Order ringtone

my girlfriend watches repeats of Law and Order every weekend. Is there something wrong with her?

This is a tricky question, because there are a lot of variables.

For instance, which Law and Order is she watching?
Law and Order: Original Flavor?
Law and Order: Special Victims Unit?
Law and Order: Criminal Intent?
Law and Order: Trial by Jury (just kidding, no one watches that.)

If she watches reruns of the original series, then which cast is she watching? Is she a Chris Noth girl? Benjamin Bratt? Orbach? Does she think Sam Waterson adds more sex appeal to the show? In like, an Abraham Lincoln sort of way? Is she disappointed by the new detectives, who lack Noth's charm and look like they got kicked out of high school for selling dime bags to finance their Halo habit?

Is she such a fan of the original that she would have voted for Fred Thompson even though he is obviously a bad guy?

She might secretly be a Republican. Or boring.

Or is she into Criminal Intent? Because Vincent D'Onofrio was in Full Metal Jacket you know, and it's practically like just watching that movie over and over again, which I'm told is a completely legitimate way to go crazy. Plus Kathryn Erbe is like, the most likable female detective on tv. She's like the green fairy to his madness. Criminal Intent is the most virtuous spin-off.

Finally, if she's really into SVU, she might be a)a lesbian for Hargitay or b)have some unresolved issues you two had better discuss in private.

In conclusion, if your girlfriend would like to come over to my house sometime and debate Mr. Big vs. D'Onofrio, tell her she's welcome anytime and to bring the Sutter Home. And stop judging her. You probably watch Gilmore Girls reruns.

Ask me anything

Edit: someone told me last night that Erbe was on OZ playing a death row lesbian? So Criminal Intent WINS.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Winter loves you. That's why it comes back every year.

This week Cleveland stayed inside while the rest of the country's winter caught up with us. I huddled inside my apartment, grateful to be working from home, watching the snow fall for days. I made a Bill Withers pandora station. I watched movies. The cats paced impatiently around me, waiting for attention. My friends came to me, and we drank. I didn't put on shoes for three days straight.

My thoughts are swiftly falling down the stairs like a runaway slinky, picking up speed. I attribute it to my general insideness. See, I like it this way. I like the slip-slideyness of the situation, my having to work a little harder to finish my sentences. It makes them more strange. The Life is the one where we have the freedom to go crazy a little, completely by ourselves, right? But I recognize the problem. I need to go outside more. Being hurt by the elements is part of living here, I would be starting the year off wrong if I didn't get a little frozen. Not having to clean my car off is sorta like being punished, if you think about it from the right angle.

This morning my friend and I got coffee and went to Edgewater, which is the best place to be on a clear day after a week of storms. The ice stalactites were formed on the breaker rocks, flash frozen on the pier like icing. It was quiet. Only a few other people stopping down there, a group of Indian boys who posed for pictures with the endless iced lake stretching behind them. A girl who jumped over the chain and walked out on the pier.

Did I tell you I like living on a lake? A lot. You do too. We all do. It keeps us here when nothing else should. It's strange and big and mysterious. It is the best thing about us, that we are lake people. There are giant fish under those frozen waves, floating back and forth, sleeping.

Out in the distance we saw an animal walking over the lake, a coyote Jesus, hunting the roosting birds. He was really far out there. We watched him for a while, because I thought for sure he would fall through the ice. He was careless, in the way that animals without moms are. He was hiking his way to Canada when we left. Lucky dog.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

The world is out to give you tetanus no matter where you are...

should i change my direct deposit from First Merit Bank to Chase? They're teasing me with 125 bucks in the account or a $150 gift card, but I gotta hunkering something will fuck up.

Short answer: something will fuck up. But that's true whichever bank you stay with. Banks exist to fuck things up.

You should tell Chase that if they really want your business, they will donate that 150 dollars to buying a cow or building a well in some poor African country where the very idea of this question is as ethereal as me asking if I should build my castle on the moon or the bottom of the ocean?

I wish some bank would start doing that all the time as an incentive. I think it would totally work. It's not like you really need another gift card to Starbucks. And in fact it would make you feel better about buying other stuff, right?

When you break into old abandoned buildings, are you more afraid of getting caught, breaking an appendage, falling through the floor, finding a dead body or getting tetanus?

The one thing I am afraid of you didn't put on that list: running into someone who lives there. I'd be a)mortified, cause it's so rude and b)really upset when they stole my camera.

All that other stuff is kind of silly. I'm actually afraid of those things all the time, in the regular world. So it doesn't matter where I am. I am on a long term mission to not get caught.

What can I do to improve the flavor of Starbucks coffee? I hate it. But I'm at work, and I got it for free, and I want caffeine.

I would suggest adding motor oil, since you are obviously a robot with no real taste buds.

Also declaring your hatred of Palestine might work.

Ask me anything

Friday, January 8, 2010

I just drank a lot of coffee and alcohol, together.

Cleveland Magazine recently released their annual "Most Interesting People in Cleveland" list, which included folks like Shaq, Matt Fish, and Mike Polk. Who are your personal picks for Most Interesting Cleveland People and why?

I have thought about this question for a while, and realize that, like most questions that require some sort of knowledge and expertise, I am not really equipped to answer it. Don't ask me things that need more knowledge than how to cheaply and magically string words together. Don't ask me the specifics of architecture, or the whys of science, or to name anyone in Cleveland that I care about at all. Because I don't live in Cleveland, my identity is not Clevelander, I don't think locally. I live in the Wasteland. I am interested in the Wasteland. There is no one in the Wasteland more interesting than me, Jeremiah, my ex boyfriend, the old guys on Flickr, my father, my mother, my friends. You know how I survive in the Wasteland? By not giving anything a proper name. In the Wasteland, I can call it anything I want.

Ask me about politics. That's a cheap answer. That requires only glibness.

Shaq can fuck off. He just got here, you assholes. I've been here forever.

People are the most uninteresting things in the world to be interested in.

Isn't this answering questions bit cheating?

Cheating on what exactly? On my fucking blog? About myself? If you feel so strongly about it, why aren't you taking me out? Give me something interesting to talk about, if you think you're up to it.

I am a nervous bride. Tell me what can I expect on my wedding night?

You will think that you feel it everywhere, but as you get older, you will realize that the feeling is in fact localized, and therefore you can live without. Is it in your teeth? Knock them out. Is it in your stomach? Starve it. Is it in the back of your legs, your knees, your uterus, your ears? You don't need it. Cast it off.

Don't get married if you don't already know what to expect.

Ask me anything

Thursday, January 7, 2010

My thoughts on Julie and Julia

Now that Julie and Julia is out on DVD, lately I've been seeing a lot of posts by food bloggers about giving in and finally seeing this puff. This is exactly the kind of movie that we all sorta secretly wanted to see a little, but not nearly enough to pay a ticket for. So it makes sense that it will be haunting cold snowed in Saturday nights for months to come. After all, Amy Adams is the cutest little dickens ever. And we all like multitudes of cast iron pans and French full skirt dresses with pockets.

I'm not likely to say much about the movie you haven't already read. The whole Julie storyline sucked, and I wish the movie had just been about Julia Childs and her husband, and nothing more.

But here are what I consider some fairly unique takeaways, worth mentioning:

Aspic shots. Yes. Jello shots made with meat jelly. We need to make these. Buddy is insisting we have to make aspic, and I'm insisting it involve copious amounts of alcohol, and this seems like the best solution for all parties. We're thinking Beefeaters, for character development.

This is the last movie I will allow to have a scene where one character shows another how to use the internet. It is time to make some fairly reasonable assumptions. You know how hard it is to make a blog? About as hard as wiping your ass. Wait, stay here for thirty seconds. Okay, I'm back and I just made a blog. About your mom being a communist whore. It will be more popular in 3 hours than What kind of 30 yr old needs her husband to set up a blog for her?

The idea of not being able to look up stuff on Google scares the holey moses living crap out of me. Mail? You're going to collaborate on a book by writing letters? On paper? And mailing them? WTF.

I will never be able to kill a lobster. Not only do I think I would be too much of a pussy, I also think I would develop an immediate fear that it's fellow lobsters were going to come after me, like I know spiders do. In my sleep.

I hate when girls commiserate over being bitches. "I'm a bitch." "Yes, I know, we're both bitches." Well why don't you just stop being bitchy then? It's not really a virtue. It is in fact a known character flaw. It's not endearing when you're fifteen, thirty, or fifty.

Apparently my life goal now should be to get an article in the New York Times, because it will make me an instant success at something. I'm not entirely sure what, but that's the movie lesson and I'm sticking to it.

Also, it is, according to Julie, immensely deridable to write a blog only about yourself, with no other higher purpose or goal. So I will never get that NYT article, because I have already cast myself as a failure. My new life plan? To write a blog all about myself, but with a theme. And the theme cannot be having sex in airplanes. Which is a shame.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

I mean, if you want to buy me a ticket there, I won't turn it down...

Why am I so tempted to live in Cleaveland after only visiting once?

You obviously had sex with someone when you were here. So good for you. That happens a lot, cause it's cold.

Or you are actually a lake monster who prefers dark bricked over tunnels and the perfume of asphalt melting. Cleveland is home to a thriving community of lake monsters, and while they may not always be easy to find, your extrasensory lake monster perception probably picked up on their general sense of security and well-being. Or you smelled a potential mate.

Please give me some career advice.

1. Stop playing on the internet at work.

2. If you own cats, don't. They will knock out your router power cord, and you will think you can't get on the internets, and since you work from home you will wake up super earlier than you need to in order to call your provider and freak out about it, just to find it was the damn power cord out, and then the woman at the cable company will laugh at you and make a bunch of cat jokes.

3.Go buy a cave somewhere. Caves are moneymakers. You can give tours. Manufacture cheese. Grow mushrooms. Build a still. Host kidnapping rings. Best part? Caves are a solid real estate investment. Just stay away from fault lines.

4. Wear a lot of blue. People in your office will subconsciously confuse you with the Virgin Mary or Obama.

What are your thoughts on Bourdeaux?

The best part about Bordeaux is that they are building the world's largest laser there. Honest. It's called the Laser Megajoule, which is a kick ass name. I believe this was funded in an attempt to boost their level of James Bond villains.

Also, they were sacked not once but twice by Vandals. As in the East Germanic 5th Century tribe that terrorized Europe for hundreds of years, leading to the origin of the word vandalism. Which probably led to their interest in breeding villainy. Or it was passed down genetically from all the raping.

I like wine. But I think it's obvious a region that makes their name growing the stuff is not to be trusted.

What was your favorite book when you were in high school?

When I was in high school, I probably would have told you Beowulf, because I was that kind of snot.

Truthfully, it was most likely this incredibly large science fiction anthology I won for an essay contest in grade school, which ranks as one of my favorite possessions of all time. I actually came in second, but the boy who won first took the dictionary instead. And that, as they say, has made all the difference.

I could knock out a large Russian with this thing. No really, it's like 10 pounds. Size is the only thing that matters really when building your library. You don't know, you might be laid siege to by a bunch of unruly French men, and be forced to defend yourself by throwing large burning items. An anthology is a natural choice, lots of heft and will burn for a long time.

Ask me anything

Monday, January 4, 2010

Because God Hates You. Obviously.

What colour is most like a number? How come bedbugs?

1.Black is 13.
You'll lose all your money that way, gambling with synesthetes.

2. Where did all the blood come from? Seeping from your box springs, in the corners of your nightstand drawer, behind the Radiohead poster? It came from you! It's your blood! They ate you like everything else in that damn city had been trying to, since the day you moved there. Pack in dirty people to these refrigerator boxes you call apartments. Add pets, children, livestock, no healthcare, shared bathrooms, pest pest pest. They came in on the planes! They snuck up through the muddy harbor! How come bed bugs? Because you couldn't stay in Ohio like a decent citizen.

Ask me anything

I really want to know where you moved back from....

How did you find your place in Cleveland? Since I moved back, all I have found is people who have no interest in being your friend because you haven't known them for 7,000 years and if you do manage to hang out with them all they do is drink too much

Well, first of all,

... and talk about tv. And not that there's anything wrong with drinking too much, which I do already and would like to do with someone besides my partner. But there is more to talk about than tv and it's boring and I'm disillusioned and lonely. And ...

let me apologize for the apparent character cap on questions.

I love Cleveland but I don't think I like anyone who lives here, which makes it hard to like Cleveland. But you seem like you've got it figured out (although I don't necessarily think you'd agree with that assessment).

I don't really believe in the term "finding yourself" or "finding your place." It implies that once you've found whatever your place is, you're done. Fuck having a place to find.

And unless you are suffering from a lack of peers in some divisive and specialized field of research(in which case I'm sorry and also jealous), the general rule is that most of the population is boring. They work all day. They watch tv because they are tired. They don't make an effort to look for new things to think about. They worry about the amount of sex they're having. Whatever city you live in, this is going to be the case. Cleveland is big enough that you can find someone who's into what you're into. I mean, it's not a huge city, but it's big enough. That whole "if you can make it in New York you can make it anywhere" thing? Well, if you can make friends in New York you can make friends in Cleveland or Oklahoma City or Houston.

But it's the making friends part that is hard. It has less to do with location and more to do with luck. Like dating, you just have to keep exposing yourself to new people until you come across someone you click with. Most of the friends I have, I have had for a long ass time. But every year there's at least 3 or 4 that get added to the rotation/stable/roster/clubhouse/there is really no non-demeaning way to say this/herd. It was all luck that led to me meeting them. Just once you meet them, you have to make a little effort to keep them around. Make plans for people? Come up with interesting things to do, and then find people to do them with, not the other way around? And if no one will come, then do them by yourself and then be really friendly to the strangers around you? When you meet someone you like, don't be afraid to ask them out? Yeah, no, it's exactly like dating.

This isn't a very helpful answer really. Everyone gets lonely and feels fed up with the circles they're in. I think the worst thing you can do is assume you don't like anyone. Once you're stuck in that mindset, there's no point in trying to get to know another person. In fact, your mindset should always be "I like you a lot until you give me reason not to."

If I had to diagnose you, I would say you're suffering from a lack of questions about yourself. My sister gave me this great piece of advice - the people worth knowing are the people who ask you about yourself, and are interested in your answers. Then you prove yourself to them by returning the favor and asking about them, and really listening to the answer. This is how real friendships are made. So I'm really sorry you keep running into people who don't ask questions.

The main point here: Never blame your location.

God, I really feel like this wasn't helpful. If you want more specific advice, tell me what you're interested in, and I'm usually pretty good about giving places to go. Good luck man.

Also, for the record, I talk about tv a LOT. Maybe you should get more into tv.

Cleveland Bachelor is a great resource for non-tv events, he knows practically everything indie band cool happening. So if you want to be in the Collinwood music niche, which is a great jumping off point for other social circles, start there. That was where I started when I had to get going again after The Relationship.

Ask me anything

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Ask me more questions so I don't have to wash my kitchen floor.

Why are lasers hot.

There are two answers to this.

1. Lasers are hot because they are focused light, which produces heat. I have no idea if this is true because I'm not a laser scientist. I don't even know what the correct title for a laser scientist is. If I met one in real life, I would probably want to fuck them, because a)they have a much cooler job than me, and b)hopefully make more money than me. Also, some lasers are not hot? I think? I mean, don't they shine them in your eyes and stuff? And there's things called laser pointers, which don't slice up the conference room as you wave them around. I've been to laser shows, and though at the time I may have been convinced I was being cut open, I'm pretty sure I wasn't. Once I went to a laser show in Toronto call The Flight of the Loon. Canada is fucked up sometimes. I bet they have a whole arsenal of lasers pointed right at us, just in case. I bet laser pointers and laser shows and shit aren't real lasers at all. I bet we're all being taken in by cat toys.

2) Lasers are hot because they convince us we're making progress.

Ask me anything

I'm looking for reasons to not leave the house, because I like not freezing to death.

This image was in a Facebook ad on my page this morning. They claim its for massage, but I think it's time Earth rises up against the Silurians once and for all.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

The Not Previously Discussed Benefits of Being a Robot and therefore not related to anyone

My mother went to Philadelphia this past week to visit her family. My grandma Bert, her mother, has alzheimers and is extremely out of it. Like, not recognize Mom out of it. Aunt Terri takes care of her, and a few times a year Mom goes up there to give Terri a break.

No one is my family is close to Grandma Bert, including, I suspect, my mother. But then, you should never pretend to understand what goes on between mothers and daughters. Grandma Bert used to travel to Cleveland to see us every Easter and sometimes Christmas. When we were little she would take us to see Disney films, and we would go Easter shopping at the West Side Market for dark spicy barley and blood sausages.

The summer I was fifteen, I stayed in Philly with her to go to summer math classes. I was a dirty hippy, and she hated me being there. I stayed in my Uncle John's room with all his German books, and she told him about it, and he freaked out that I might touch his stuff even though he'd been in Europe for years. Grandma told everyone I was stealing from her, that I had stolen her brother's Purple Heart. Later, when she was crazy and they were selling the house, they found it under the bathroom sink. My mom didn't tell me any of this till after the fact, but I knwe Grandma thought I was a thief, and I suspect much of her dislike came from me being fat and not pretty and weird.

The only part I really liked about Philly that summer were my hippie summer school friends drinking non-alcoholic beers on Saturdays and Polish church masses on Sundays.

So it comes to this week. I haven't spoken to my grandma, or even heard her voice, in ten years. She is a source of pain for my mom. She is crazy. She was crazy before she was crazy too. But I have a large amount of guilt for feeling this way. After all, she's my only living grandparent. She's my family's history. I would love to be able to visit my grandma and listen to her tell stories, I want family stories, and drink coffee with her and love her. But it's not that way, and now it's too late, but really it never could have been that way. I'm too sentimental, is all.

Point of this wool gathering is this. Yesterday my mom called on her cell. I picked up and said "Hi Mom."

"Hi Bubshi, this is Bonnie. How are you?" (Bubshi is mom's grandmother's nickname. I don't know if I'm spelling it right. Apparently the way I spell it is Japanese, but it's from some Polish word. I'm a bad descendant.)
"Mom, you called your daughter."
"I know, just go with it."
"Here Mom, here's Bubshi, she'll tell you it's okay to stay here." My grandma comes on the phone. Her voice is deep and raspy and childish.
"Hi Bert. It's okay to stay with Bonnie tonight."
"I'm going to stay here tonight. I wanted to let you know."
"I know, it's okay Bert. It's better you stay with Bonnie."
"I can't hear you. Maybe Terri has better hearing..."
"I said, you should stay with Bonnie tonight. It's cold, you should stay there."
"I just wanted to tell you. It's late, and we're closer to the city."
"I know. I appreciate the call. Stay there. I love you."
"I'm just going to stay here."
"It's better if you stay there with Bonnie. It's better to stay there tonight."
Grandma passes the phone back to Mom.
"Hi Honey, how was your party?"
"There was champagne drinking out of measuring cups, so it was good. How's your day going?"
Poor Mom. She passes the phone back to Grandma.
"Here Mom, do you want to tell Bubshi you love her?"
"I love you Bubshi"
"I love you too Bert. Have a good night."

So there you go. Yesterday I played my great grandmother, so my grandmother who thought she was a teenager could have permission to stay in the city with her daughter, who she thinks is her other daughter. Do you think that's funny? Cause it's really fucking not. She's dying and I don't know her. I was only given a chance when I was an awkward child, and by the time I grew up enough to have poise, that chance was over. The little silver threads in her head are unraveling, and when my mother's generation dies as well, all that will be left of her in me is a fondness for Eastern European religious icons, memories of an amber rosary I took apart for the beads, and cravings for weird sausages whenever I hear Polka music. Oh, and the crazies.

Later I met up with Cat and Jere and her friend Todd, and sat at the bar talking about Vikings and writing and mating tactics for 5 hours, drinking heavily and desperately trying to not think about that conversation. I almost beat Jere at arm wrestling, but not quite. I'm not that strong. So I paid the tab, and it made me feel better. Useful.

Friday, January 1, 2010

How you celebrate New Years Eve says a lot about what kind of person you are, and who you want to be

Conversational topics I participated in NYE 2009/2010

1. relationships
2. letting your child watch Paranormal Activity
3. Did said child get up and stare at you in the middle of the night as a joke, or was he sleepwalking, or was he just really scared cause you let him watch that fucking movie and he's 12?
4. The amount of papers CSU makes you write
5. What's more nutritional, brussel sprouts or broccoli?
6. Dancing? Saturday?
7. Avatar
8. Ayn Rand's intention with individualism
9. Killer Bunnies
10. being targeted by the Christian Mafia at work for having a beard and a tattoo

11. His trip to Amsterdam
12. Walking on a glacier, and appropriate places to do that.
13. reality survivalist shows
14. what people store in other people's garages
15. Windmill tours and clog factories in the dark
16. making her drink champagne out of that thing
17. teaching your kid to put their face under the water
18. the last season of Roseanne
19. whether or not we could justify crushing a submarine like a tin can in the screenplay, because he really wants to see that happen.
20. socks with toes
21. If you were to replicate a human brain by designing a machine that would synthesize a neuron inside the robotic body as you removed it from the organic body, would it be the same person? Would it be like waking up from a sleep, or would you be gone?

Whoever sent me that text, no worries, I will keep fucking that chicken. Promise. As long as you stay classy.