Category Archives: Dreams

Career Change!

I’ve been perusing the job sites this afternoon, and I came across two positions that are particularly cool.  One of my dreams is to live on the road for at least a couple months of my life.  This summer isn’t conducive to that, unfortunately, as I have three weddings to attend, but that’s totally fine.  Besides, I’m not really qualified for either of these.

The Big Apple Circus, an internationally recognized, not-for-profit touring circus seeks a Fleet Assistant.

Responsibilities are dependant on experience and skill. Duties include assisting the Fleet Supervisor in maintaining the show vehicles and equipment, basic mechanics, driver’s license required.

This job requires full-time travel with the show. Position provides: salary, housing, all meals, benefits, and tour transportation. Tools and equipment provided.

To apply, email resume to opsofficebac2@aol.com or call Chris @ 917-921-2560

Just think–you could literally run away with the circus!  This next one I guess I could be qualified for, but I’m not sure I have the temperament for:

Private large Motor Yacht based in Jersey City is looking for a friendly, reliable, professional stewardess who can bartend, waitress and keep the yacht clean and tidy. Experience and interest in preparing and presenting food will be very beneficial to the successful candidate.

This is ideally a live aboard position as the yacht travels from Newport RI to Cape May NJ all summer long. Hours are not set but determined by the owner’s use of the yacht.

This is a great opportunity for those looking for a summer of fun and travel along with the opportunity to save their earnings as food and accommodation are provided when living on board.

Inquire at  job-bajdb-1748591918@craigslist.org

They even provide a uniform!  Which is one reason I’m not sure I’d be a good fit–I don’t much like khaki.  Or yachts, if I’m really honest with myself.  I want a grungey tour bus compartment to sleep in, not an oak cabin compartment.  And they use the term “stewardess.”  Which makes me think that’s what this rich chauvinist still calls the female flight attendents on his private jet! 

Sigh.  Some people.

I did apply for one job today that I’m really excited about.  And really qualified for, I think.  But times are tough.  The ad was posted at 9:22 this morning, and I’m sure by now, 6:30pm, they’ve already received countless inquiries.  Feel free to do this for me:

Advertisements

A state of the blog and its author address

You might not guess it from the looks of my neglected blog, but I have been doing some writing lately. Most of it is ending up on my flash drive instead of here.

I feel like one of the minor, enduring struggles of my life has been realizing that it’s a beautiful day outside, yet preferring to stay inside and read a book or write in my notebook while wearing pajamas and eating potato chips. Today I justified my indoor actions by telling myself it’d still be light out when I’d have to leave the apartment to go work, so I needn’t feel obligated to leave before then. I also looked at the weather report and found that tomorrow will also be warm and nice and I can take advantage of it then–unless I find myself in a similar mood. You know those moods? For me it’s like my inner world feels so interesting and stimulating that why bother interacting with someone else at the moment? Or this character in the book is in the middle of a really big ordeal, and my couch is really comfortable, why risk not finding a good reading spot in a cafe or park?

So, that’s what I found myself in this afternoon. And I worked on some of my flash drive stuff. But I think about my blog a lot. It’s not exactly like a child. It’s more like a Tamagachi pet or even a Chia pet. I know I can go a reasonable amount of time away from it and still nurse it back to health and restore its faith in me. But I also know how easy it is to leave it on a shelf for a few weeks. Maybe those are bad comparisons. I don’t think of my blog as a fad I’ll eventually grow tired of, throw in a box in the basement, then drag out for annual tag sales, only then to remember all the great times I shared with it when some bratty neighborhood kid offers me a quarter to take it home with them–never to love or care for it as I did.

Yeah. My blog is something else. It’s a tool and an outlet and a companion. And it’s me.

I didn’t mean to share any of that. I meant to share the first couple paragraphs of something I’ve been working on. So here that is. Thanks for reading this blog. Thanks for contributing to the life of my figurative Tamagachi Chia pet thing.


Some people are able to announce, with grandiosity: I was born moments after the first man walked on the moon; Or, on the day Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat; In the wake of a magnitude 6.5 earthquake. They imply these events prefaced and even foreshadowed the lives they went on to lead and the kind of people they grew to be—inevitably great and impactful.

Myself, I was born shortly after my parents watched Caddyshack, including the scene in which Bill Murray’s character eats a candy bar others mistake for feces floating in a pool. I like to think that in being exposed to this film I recognized that the world could be a funny place, and that though the womb was warm and safe, I didn’t mind venturing some place new.

“Pronounced Leh-Nerd Skin-Nerd”

Thanks iLike.com for clarifying that. And thanks Lynyrd Skynyrd for these lyrics:

Oh, take your time. Don’t live too fast.
Troubles will come and they will pass.
Go find a woman–you’ll find love.
And don’t forget, son, there is someone up above.

And be a simple kind of man.
Be something you love and understand.
Baby, be a simple kind of man.
Oh, won’t you do this for me, son, if you can?

Forget your lust for the rich man’s gold.
All that you need is in your soul.
And you can do this, oh baby, if you try.
All that I want for you, my son, is to be satisfied.

This song was on my mind today. Mostly because I submitted a two week’s notice for one of my jobs. It felt impulsive and liberating. But really I’ve been thinking about doing it for awhile. I’m only there one day a week for one thing. It doesn’t pay all that well. And it doesn’t challenge or stimulate me in the slightest. (A cubicle is involved.)

So, out with the old, in with the new. Which, is this economy, doesn’t mean much. But fuck it. All I need is in my soul.

Life and the Academy

After watching the Academy Awards tonight, I’ve got this feeling in my chest.  It’s tight and open at the same time.  It’s at ease and anxious.  It’s the same feeling I have when I stop and think about life–the overwhelming feeling of recognizing its beautiful mysteries, contradictions, and ambiguities.  

I’m left with that feeling now because the Oscars are a celebration of creativity.  And if I’m truly honest with myself, I feel most alive when I’m creating.  No matter if it’s a poem, essay, performance, or conversation with a friend. 

The speech that most directly related to all this came from Michael Giacchino who won Best Original Score for his work on “Up”.  He said:

I was nine and I asked my dad, ‘Can I have your movie camera? That old wind-up eight milimeter camera that’s in your drawer?’ And he goes, ‘Sure, take it.’  And I took it and I started making movies with it and I started being as creative as I could.  And never once in my life did my parents ever say, ‘What you’re doing is a waste of time.’ Never. And I grew up I had teachers, I had colleagues, I had people I worked with all through my life who always told me, ‘What you’re doing is not a waste of time.’  So that was normal to me….

I know there are kids out there who don’t have that support system, so if you’re out there and you’re listening–listen to me: if you want to be creative, get out there and do it.  It’s not a waste of time. 

In the end, the competition doesn’t matter.  The support and the love–they do.  And creativity?  It’s not a waste–it’s life itself.

On Nostalgia, On Stars, On Mutts and Thoroughbreds

When I was seven-years-old, my dad brought home a dog.  It was mainly a Labrador, but it was mostly a mutt.  He was already just about full grown when he became our family dog, and no one took the time or initiative to train him.  I forget why my dad brought him home, but I remember my mom was not consulted and she was not happy.

One of my most vivid memories of this time in my life is sitting on the back door concrete steps one particular evening.  It was completely dark.  It must’ve been just after dinner, but in my mind it feels like it was midnight.  My brothers sat beside me and we looked at the stars.  We tried to decide what to name the dog.  The combination of family, and starlight, and this important task–it was like an ancient ceremony.  I think Mom and Dad had actually told us to go sit on the steps and think of something.  We’d been given a big responsibility and I felt the full weight of it (so much so that I offered no name ideas).

It was my oldest brother who finally came up with it.  And it was this magical moment!  He pronounced the name and it felt so right. So perfect.  Like there was no other name in the universe for this dog.  This dog would be named…Sparky.

Myself at seven had no idea that this was a cliche dog name.  To me, my brother was a genius.  He’d gazed at the stars, he’d noticed their white, twinkling lights, and he’d associated that light with the light of sparks.  Thus, Sparky.


Sparky was a terrible dog.  He barked a lot.  He bit.  And the thing that made me most upset about Sparky–he yanked on the leash so hard during walks that you’d have to let go of the wristband or you’d fall to the pavement.  The thing I most wanted at seven-years-old was to be able to walk Sparky.  Being the youngest member of the family, I think I just craved that feeling of being useful.  I wanted to contribute!  

Also, I was very shy, so I wanted to go out into the neighborhood and be social, but I wanted a buffer for when I did–sort of like a desperate guy in a sitcom bringing a puppy to the park with him to attract the attention of cute female joggers.  I wanted to be just like the loud neighborhood kids with their soccer balls and their roller blades, but it was so much easier to talk to the bumblebee that hung around in the backyard bushes.  I think I knew I was the desperate guy in the sitcom, and I think I knew I was never going to get laid. At least not by cute female joggers in the park.


I bring all this up because earlier this week the Westminster Dog Show was held!  Right here in New York!  It was a jarring moment for me, because I was in a bar on Seventh Avenue, drinking a Newcastle, and going back and forth between glancing at the screen with the dogs and glancing at the screen with the male figure skaters–and then, I left the bar, walked up Seventh Avenue near Madison Square Garden–and THERE WERE THE DOGS AND THEIR CRAZY HANDLERS!!  They were all leaving the Garden and heading back to their fancy schmancy hotels.  At first I didn’t even put it together, I was just like, “Hey, there are a lot of dogs around.”  And a couple seconds later, “Hey, these dogs are really well-behaved.”

And then I realized what was going on, and I was like, “Oh, yeah.  I live in New York.”  Still, I got pretty excited and I snapped some blurry pictures:

Only the handler's boobs and below are in focus. I planned this.

It is more expensive to raise this dog than to rebuild Haiti?

Too blurry. Can't think of clever caption.


At seven, I badly, badly wanted a beagle, and later, I badly wanted a border collie. The passion with which I wanted a dog at a walkable size was overwhelming. I didn’t ask for much as a child. An Easy Bake Oven, and a border collie. Between the ages of 4 and 9, that was it.

In most ways I still feel exactly like that seven-year-old. I understand that deep need for an Easy Bake Oven–if I don’t have Duncan Hines brownie or cake mixes on hand, a visceral sadness comes over me. A similar sadness comes over me when I think about how badly I wanted a dog, though, because I can’t relate to that today. Today I’m allergic to dogs. They make my eyes itch and they make little hives pop up on my hands and arms.

It’s a clear example of a place in which I’ve changed. I still want to feel useful, I’m still intimidated yet intrigued by my peers, but no part of me wants a dog. And that makes me sad. It makes me want to go find that little girl having a conversation with a bumblebee and give her a long hug. And a brownie.

It’s hard to exist.

I’m struggling with existence again. As usual. It’s so lame. And it’s also the least lame thing ever.

An old friend texted me a few minutes ago saying, “I hear you’re some kind of comedian now.” And I texted back, “I’m not sure what I am. What are you these days?”


I was riding the subway on Monday, and I was eating a turkey sandwich. The turkey sandwich part isn’t so important, except that the train was crowded and I was dropping lettuce on myself and I felt sort of bad, but not that bad because the woman sitting next to me was eating an apple.

In an attempt to avoid eye contact with any Q Train passengers who might be watching me eat, I started studying advertisements. One in particular caught my eye. For a few reasons:

1. It was for a book and I like those.

2. The concept for the book turns the author into a whore.

3. I’ve long thought about writing a book just like this. Well, sort of like this:

“Publisher’s Weekly” ascribes this book to the “stunt-blog memoir genre”. There is a gimmicky feel to this genre, but it can be done really well! I don’t care if Oprah plugged it, I really enjoyed Eat, Pray, Love: One Woman’s Search for Everything Across Italy, India and Indonesia. Shit was inspiring. I also enjoyed Danny Wallace’s book Yes Man that inspired the Jim Carrey movie I didn’t see.

But as far as stunt-blog memoirs go, this has gotta be one of the most stunt-bloggy of them all. Maybe I’m just upset I didn’t think of doing it myself. I mean, how can you really go wrong when the backbone of your stunt-blog memoir has these kinds of stats:

IF OPRAH WERE… A NATION her 51.4 million weekly viewers and magazine readers would equal more than the population of Canada (33 million), Spain (40.3 million) or Argentina (39.9 million).

IF OPRAH WERE… A PILE OF GOLD she’d be equal to 24,000 14-karat gold bars.

cnnmoney.com reported in January that Oprah ranked second only to Google as the biggest brand newsmaker of 2006. Behind Ms. Winfrey were Amazon, eBay and iPod.

IF OPRAH WERE… A NATIONAL ECONOMY what she’d pump into the U.S. economy would be slightly more than the GDP of the Bahamas. See more here.


The only thing left to do now, now that I’ve accepted I’ll probably never figure out the big existential questions, is figure out what to spend 365 days of my life doing that I can convince a publishing house will make a memoir and make them money.

Actually, my old friend texted back to tell me what she is these days, and it sounds like the perfect title for a stunt-blog memoir: Nomadic Barista.

“If you touch me you’ll understand what happiness is…”*

*That’s a mighty claim, Andrew Lloyd Webber…

Yesterday I went to the Salvation Army. My plan was to buy a coffee table. The thing that’s so great about thrift stores like the Army, though, is that you never know what you’re going to find. For instance, in the electronics department I found these:

TWO televisions simultaneously playing “Cats”, paired with one television playing J. Lo and Matthew McConaughey’s “The Wedding Planner”. These three screens distracted my attention for at least five minutes. (Five of the best minutes of my life.)

In the end, I didn’t go home with a coffee table.  Nor did I go home with a TV or a VHS copy of “The Wedding Planner”.  (I already own it on DVD.)  Instead, I went home with a pair of rollerblades and a plaid shirt that was in the men’s department even though it’s clearly a woman’s shirt.

Updates on future failed attempts to purchase a coffee table to follow.  I wrote a poem about a coffee table when I was in college.  It was just a list of stuff that had been left on the one in my dorm room after a particularly drunken weekend.

Poets are so pretentious.


Please experience 3:00: