Monthly Archives: August 2009

Sex is like popcorn.

deflatedpopcornbagI’m semi-moved into a new apartment.  It’s only 13 blocks from my old one, but it’s still pretty life-changing.  For instance, tonight, when I got home after work, I attempted to make my first bag of microwave popcorn in the new place.  Only I already had the kitchen light on, the A/C on, and the bedroom light on, and…I blew a fuse.  Which wasn’t really a big deal, except that, as made evident above, my popcorn didn’t fully pop.  And rather than make another bag when the fuse situation got sorted, I resorted to tortilla chips.

Anyway, that’s probably the least interesting thing that’s happened to me in the past few days, but I thought the deflated Orville Redenbacher was funny for some reason.  It makes me think of ads for sexual dysfunction.  Which probably says something (or a lot) about my psyche.

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In which I will finish what I sort of started…

…in This post [that] was meant to be a “rave” about the lyrics in the song “Already Gone” by The Eagles.  Here are the lyrics that especially make me wanna rave:

So often times it happens that we live our lives in chains
And we never even know we have the key

We have the key.  That’s deep.  That’s spiritual.  That makes me want to climb a precipice, look to the heavens, and chant a Buddhist mantra or sing a Creed song.  These lines get me just as much if not more:

Just remember this, my girl, when you look up in the sky
You can see the stars and still not see the light

See the light.  I like it because you can take it in a literal or metaphorical sense.  It’s kind of like the glass half full thing only taken to a cosmic level!  Yes, it’s just like that.

In other news, guess what!  It’s been one of the craziest, most epic weeks of my life.  I moved to a new apartment, I found a second job, I updated my Facebook status multiple times, AND I started another blogThis is my favorite entry so far.  It gives me an excuse to use my camera phone more than necessary.

This post was meant to be a “rave” about the lyrics in the song “Already Gone” by the Eagles…

I’ve never been to a rave.  One time, when I was but a young, doe-eyed college student, this dude from Seattle sat next to me on an Amtrak train.  He was huge into raves.  He asked if I’d ever been.  When I said no, he said that he was positive I would love them and that I had to promise to go to one at my absolute earliest convenience.  He was very adament about the whole thing.  He went as far as to say that I seemed like a “rave type”.  Which sort of threw me, but I smiled and nodded as I always do with strangers with whom I ill-advisedly engage.

Long story short, I’m almost positive the guy had killed multiple people in his lifetime.  He totally had the look of the kind of guy you expect to see on a “Dateline” or “20/20” special: crazy white guy full of sexual rage and misogyny.  He initially introduced himself as Peter.  As the train ride and our conversation progressed, though, he revealed that he actually went by a different name.  He said he had a pair of progressive parents who encouraged him and his siblings to rename themselves.  Peter was very excited to reveal his self-given name to me.  He let the anticipation build (though I wasn’t actually anxious to learn it).  And after an extensive, extensive explanation of his love of Japanese swordsmanship, Peter told me.  His other name was…

Cutts. “With two t’s!” 

Had it not just so happened that I ended up transferring to a different train than Peter/Cutts, I have no doubt that I would’ve ended up drugged and cut.  Slashed, even.

So, yeah…who feels like raving?

(It pans out at the end to show two words above the stage that tell exactly where you are in case you weren’t sure.)

I could watch these all day.

So, this was maybe one of three video games that I ever played. But I could spend hours with Street Fighter II.

Here are my two least favorite characters:

Ken always seemed like the prick version of Ryu. And Sagat makes that obnoxious noise every two seconds. I had a lot of trouble getting past Sagat, though I do like the temples and his stone thing in the background.

Zangief!! You big lovable oaf.  M. Bison, on the other hand, does nothing for me.  Militant piece of crap.

Ah, E. Honda.  His moves are, by far, my favorite.  That arm thing he does?!  The ballerina float and the fly through the air!?  AND the hump action?  Then that big belly laugh to finish it all off.  He kills me.

Oh, also, I always thought Dhalsim was based on my grandfather.  (Because his limbs extended to three times their length, he could spew fire, and he could float in the air.  No big deal.)

Thoughts on the city, the factory

“Oh, you’re all just so sophisticated sitting in your little cafes and looking up at the Empire State Building while the rest of us lie around in haystacks smoking our corncob pipes. Is that it?”

The summer before I moved to New York City for college, I worked in a factory in an industrial park. Everyone was really nice to me. My coworkers there were some of the most genuine and offbeat characters I’ve ever met. They were certain I was going to be killed in the big city. They would stop at my soldering station and tell me things they knew about pepper spray and karate. I’d tell them that the muscles I was building from carrying metal parts for ten hours a day would serve me well.

I learned some valuable life lessons at that job. One guy saw me chewing gum after lunch one day and he told me I should only chew gum if I had diarrhea, otherwise I could get an ulcer. I’ve never forgotten that. Another guy helped me get my finger out of the vending machine when it got stuck in the change return slot. I’ve never forgotten that, either.

I’ve been in NYC for five years now, and I’m still kicking. All my limbs, fingers still attached. That quote from David Sedaris’ book When You Are Engulfed In Flames reminded me of my old factory friends. When I left for school they told me to be careful, to learn a lot, to stay off the streets at night. Two out of three recommendations I’ve followed. They gave me a good luck card, an Olive Garden gift card and 8 worn dollar bills.

They arrive at the factory just as I’m going to sleep most nights/mornings. Their lifestyle and mine couldn’t be more opposed now, but for those six weeks, five years ago, their lives and mine were the same. I wonder how they’re all doing. The company did profit sharing when I was there. They had a catered lunch every Thursday. They gave us clothes–tons of them! But a lot can happen, has happened, in five years.

I had NO idea.

Thanks to a terrible contestant on “Who Wants to be a Millionaire” tonight, I have learned that Mike Tyson is a pigeon-lover. Of all the things to take the time to talk about, one of the talking points of Regis’ introduction with her, this woman Michelle Ribeiro, was all about…how she did not like pigeons.

I gasped in horror when Regis said it. I clutched my face with my hands. This woman. This woman had tricked me. She won the “fastest-finger” game, she sat in the “hot seat”, and I began to root for her. Then it came time for a commercial break. And when the commercial break ended, that’s when it all came out. She blamed her deep fear and hatred for the creatures on watching The Birds one too many times as a kid. Which is, to borrow a phrase, bollocks.

She laughed and smiled this big smile and made everyone feel bad for her because she got fired from her job as a “CosmoGirl” editor and didn’t get to have an in-person interview her childhood crush, Tommy Lee, when the whole time–she’d been a pigeon hater.

I feel bad. I let the “CosmoGirl” thing slide. Which was wrong of me. I should’ve shunned her right then and there, before the $100 question, before the commercial break. Because let me say, on the record, that “CosmoGirl” is no publication I would ever want any daughter of mine to read.

Pigeons are smart, beautiful creatures. “CosmoGirl” turns smart, beautiful creatures into insecure, superficial, celeb-obsessed, materialistic, unsatisfied teenage twats. Case in point, on the front page of their website you can access a quiz that asks, “Always single? Find out why you don’t have a boyfriend!” Then you can click over to the Beauty section and read an article that starts with the oh-so-innocent line, “Everyone knows that Aveda is a super awesome company…” Yeah, they really have it in bold. Oh, it makes me so sad.

But the one good thing that came out of Michelle Ribeiro badmouthing pigeons on national television tonight was that a friend of mine brought Mike Tyson’s deep love for pigeons to my attention. It makes me so happy to discover that I have more in common with Mike Tyson than I do with a “CosmoGirl”:

3am Subway Attack

I’ve been riding the New York subway at ungodly hours for months now–about 9, to be exact.  Last night I left work at 3am.  Business as usual.  There’s the option of taking a cab, but they just don’t appeal to me.  Sitting in the backseat as someone chauffeurs me home feels extravagant.  It takes longer to go by subway, but this affords me time to read, write, or just stare ahead blankly.  The risks involved in riding public transportation in the middle of the night really haven’t been an issue…thieves, rapists, drug addicts, belligerent homeless people–they haven’t pestered me much.  Nothing has pestered me much, really.

But last night that changed.  I was standing beside one of those tiled columns on the platform.  I admired a small rat climbing over one of the rails.  No lights shone in the tunnel, so I focused on writing in my notepad.  A few people waited, but overall the station was pretty quiet.

After a few moments, though, something happened.  I felt a sensation on my toes.  I live in flip-flops in the summer.  I didn’t think much of the sensation at first, but it was enough to inspire me to look down.  At first I noticed that my toes were a bit dirty.  I made a mental note to take a shower when I got home.  But as I looked closer, I saw a bug walking over two of the toes on my left foot.  Not just a bug–a bee!

I sucked in my breath and was at a loss as to what to do.  One simply does not expect to have to problem solve this sort of problem in the subway at 3am.  Luckily, after a few moments, the bee crawled onto the plastic strap of my flip-flop.  I slowly eased my foot out of my flip-flop–positive that I would be stung at any moment.  It didn’t sting me, though, and I was able to pick up the shoe, tap it on the platform, and be rid of the bee.

I put my flip-flop back on, took a few steps back, and chuckled about what had just happened.  Before I chuckled more than once or twice, though, I saw the bee FLYING towards me.  Why do they do that? It landed on my skirt.  What I had been laughing about a second earlier, sent me into a sudden moderate panic–

I know.  It’s not that bee stings even hurt terribly or that I’m allergic, but if it can be avoided at all, that’s certainly preferable.

In any event, I sort of lost it.  The bee flew off of my skirt and hovered very close to me.  It seemed to have its sights set on landing on the back of my shirt at this point.  I’m not sure if it did make it on my shirt or not, but in an effort to escape, I started running down the subway platform.  Running and whimpering.  And desperately trying to get a good look at my back to see if the bee had landed.

When I stopped running, I no longer saw the bee, but I continued to fidget and whimper.  A man sat on a nearby bench.  He’d been witness to my frantic running.  I’m not sure if he knew why I was behaving in that manner.  I kind of hope he had no idea.  Because if he didn’t see the bee, then for that brief amount of time, I was, in his mind, an insane person.  Running from nothing.  At 3am on the subway platform.

I still don’t know what became of the bee or where it came from.  The train came soon after I stopped running.  I checked the reflection of my back in the train glass to be completely sure of the bee’s absence.  Nothing.  I inhaled and exhaled deeply and waited for my stop.