Memories

My ragtag team of misfits beating a real softball team.

Finding out the team we beat are bartenders and regulars at one of the coolest bars ever.

Drinking for free for about 3 hours because we won. – vodka tonics and pink coconut girly drinks that can fuck you up.

Making new friends and finding a new favorite watering hole. – “See you next Saturday.”

Thai food.

So it’s settled – Iceland in September. Brazil in 2005.

Strip jenga. – Kiss the person on your left. Do a shot. Show us your sexy underwear. Truth: Who at this table do you want to have sex with the most?

More drinking.

Paul's Boutique and Deltron 3030 repeating over and over for a 48 hour soundtrack.

Go to Lowery’s tavern. Intercept Sarah’s date. “Have you stuck your tongue down her throat yet?”

Late night Mexican food.

Sleep.

Waking up late on Sunday.

Cubs game. bleachers. rain delay. “We’re not going in!” bonding. “He’s on my team!” extra innings. “We’re not leaving!” Really really sunburned. Cubs win.

Friendship.

Love.

Weekend++

Another sleepless night next to the Porno Studio or One day I'll be a movie star

"Can you hear all that banging?"

"Yeah I hear it alright, I think it's coming from there," I point my finger at the yellow wall, where I think the noise is coming from.

"What the hell are they doing?"

"I'm not sure, but it doesn't sound holy,"

My flatmate and I are sitting in the dark, it's late at night, or early in the morning, whichever, we are both dressed in our sleeping uniforms. He stares at the wall, whilst I wrap up in my blanket. It's cold.

Bang Bang BANG.

"What the fuck was that?"

"I don't know, hey let's take a peek out front,"

We both creep through the flat, tiptoe, until we reach the frontroom. We peer over the edge of the balcony, past the neon Fosters sign.

"Who are they?"

"They look like camera men."

"You think?"

"Yeah I do, look, look I see a camera," I raise my head, using it to point, giving direction to my flatmate who is trying to see the same thing I see: a television crew sneeking into our neighbours flat.

I can't help laughing. You know what I say to my flatmate, they are filming next door, they are filming the girls!

We both sneak back to my room where the noise originally emanated from.

"Can you hear the panting?"

"I think so,"

"I can, listen," I move closer to the wall, and I can hear various things being plugged in, switched on, moved about.

My flatmate starts to grin, he can hear what I have been hearing all-night-long. The panting continues, albeit louder and with more meaning.

"Yes! Yes! Yes!" We both look at each other hardly believing the sounds. These walls are quite thin, I think to myself.

"Do you reckon they are having an orgy?"

"No, they are making a film."

"Can we be in it?"

"Hey, worth a try."

"Let's knock on the wall,"

"Are you crazy?"

"Hell, this is my only chance to be in a porno!" I look at him in disbelief.

"Go for it buddy," He taps on the wall.

The panting stops.

"See, look what you've done, you've fucked their night up,"

"No," My flatmate says.

"I'm going round there to er...quiet them down."

He gets up, puts his jacket on, and the last thing I hear is the door slamming. He's gone for a couple of hours.

One day, he used to say to me, I'll be a movie star.

This wasn't meant to be a daylog, but what the hell, fuck it, it's not that good anyway (w00t)

Sales Order Processing; or, how to occupy the hours between the time of the bell which calls me from sleep and the temporal quantum, unmarked by sound, after which I can leave my work (part five: new life, new worlds, new-duh women)

I have drawn a cartoon figure. I have created life. It is a little man - could be a woman - with bird-like limbs, and a torso made out of a speech bubble. 'I hate you - child!', the creature is saying, in capital letters. Am I the child that is hated? Or is the figure supposed to represent myself, hating someone who may or not be an actual infant? It strikes me suddenly that I have no infant friends.

I discovered at an early age that eyebrows are the windows of the soul, and the cartoon's eyebrows are therefore particularly expressive, the expression they express being the expression of anger and also that of frustration. A mixture of incompetence and insufficient forward planning has ensured that the figure's eyes appear to be glaring at my right shoulder rather than directly at me. This gives the impression that the figure is addressing a character located on the page, rather than the fourth wall, insofar as two-dimensional paper can have a 'fourth wall'. In fact paper only has one wall, this being the back wall. Nonetheless I believe that all walls are the fourth wall, for there is always an audience. I keep this in mind as I progress through my daily duties.

I was inspired to create this cartoon figure by the phrase '128MB DRAM' which I have written further up the page. After drawing a box around the words I decided to highlight them further by drawing over them again with a biro. I feel that the creative possibilities of biro have barely been touched upon. By varying the pressure with which I stroke biro against paper, I can create a gradient of colour. By passing the biro rapidly back and forth I can create accurate straight lines, albeit that they are fuzzy. By drawing all over my thumb and then pressing my thumb to the paper I can create interesting textures. I cannot think of any great works of art created with biro. Several have been rendered with pens, their motion fuelled by mescaline, and many important documents and treaties have been written in ink, but artists and leaders alike are united in their rejection of the biro. I am both an artist and a leader, and I have a biro. I do not reject it.

Whilst highlighting the '8' in '128MB' I strayed and created a spurious loop. Adding a second loop produced a pair of eyes. I then added some eyebrows, for there are no eyes without eyebrows, notwithstanding the example of womankind who remove their eyebrows, only to replace them with pencil. I do not follow the example of woman, certainly not whilst at work. I cannot take a path which I cannot see. At this point I tried to turn the upper half of the '8' into a nose, rather like the nose of W. C. Fields, although the end result does not resemble any natural-born human being alive or dead of which I am aware.

The defects and abnormalities which afflict the developing foetus may well have resulted in a child which bears the likeness of my cartoon creation, but such a freakish visage would never find favour in Hollywood, except as a cheap special effect (witness the sad life and film career of the late Rondo Hatton, a contract actor for Universal during the 1940s, invariably cast as a villain on account of the worsening acromegaly which eventually killed him. He remains a cult, tragic figure to this day.)

Yes, or rather no, the unexceptionally ugly do not have a place in Hollywood. A certain degree of craggy-facedness is desirable for character actors who are supposed to exude wisdom and experience - neither Tommy Lee Jones nor Samuel L. Jackson are by any measure handsome men, yet they continue to find work - although this does not apply to female characters. Indeed, there are very few roles for wizened or experienced female characters in Hollywood films. Having said this, there are very few roles for wizened or experienced female people in real life, and in this respect Hollywood is merely reflecting and amplifying reality, albeit that the 'reality' of everyday life for a Hollywood producer does not resemble that of the target audience for his films. With perhaps the exception of 'Wall Street' or 'Rogue Trader', very few films are aimed specifically at the kind of people who, in the UK, would work in the Square Mile.

If I had a cat I would be tempted to call it 'Maushrek' or 'Mausfaust' or something similar. 'Panzerkatze'. But I would not go so far as to use this name because it would be extremely contrived and 'zany', designed purely to show off my inflated opinion of my own cleverness and also to draw other people into asking me what the name means. I do not need cheap gimmicks to cause others to engage me in conversation; people flock to me without me doing anything at all. Sitting here at work I have talked to a dozen people or more, albeit that they are far away, and that our discussions have mostly concerned parts orders and/or incomplete deliveries of sofas and chairs to Land of Leather.

They were not social calls, indeed I do not believe there is such a thing as society - individuals, families, groups of friends perhaps, beyond which I do not owe anybody anything unless they provide a service - but they were nonetheless human beings and contact was made.

I have recently recieved an email from someone I used to respect supporting the torture of the Iraqi POWs, as they would be torturing us if the situation was reversed. I sent the following message as a response:
We are supposed to be the good guys. We expect them to be barbaric, we are supposed to be better than they are because we are not barbarians.

If we simply say "they do it, so we do it" means that we are no different than they are. If that is the case, why are we there? If we are really there to "liberate" Iraq, why are we torturing militia who were not even part of Saddam's power structure when he ruled the country? They are POWs, and fall under the Geneva convention.

George Bush said we went there to close the torture rooms at that prison. Why did we reopen them?

These events have provided a greater recruiting tool for the terrorists than anything we could have ever provided. Many fence-sitting Arabs will now come down on the side of the enemy because of this.

I am a veteran, and I am ashamed of what was done. We are supposed to be the good guys, and the Constitution is supposed to apply to everyone, especially those that do not respect it, to demonstrate to them that it is a valid document that binds us all.

I am surprised that there is any debate on this topic, actually. If good people decide that any action is justified in fighting evil, then their good is no different from the evil they wish to destroy.


One comment I received was, "But are we supposed to be the 'good guys'? What if we're just 'our guys', in which case its the our-ness that separates us from our enemies, not our goodness."

I say to that, if that is the case, what business do we have in Iraq? What makes us different from any other imperial power? Bush said (after no WMDs were found) that we are there to liberate the Iraqi people. If we are not the bearers of freedom and human rights, why are we there?

I am very excited today, for it is my almost-best friend's birthday and we are going on a limo ride! It's kind of cliche`, but that's alright. The sad part is that we're going to make a cameo at this small burger joint and probably just ride through town waving our fingers at people, without showing our faces throught the window.

It's going to be fun. I just feel bad that I forgot to bring her present with me to school today. I made her a Dammit Doll (thanks to Lometa) and put her a little hand made card that I bought from the dollar store (hehehe). I hope she likes her present, but I guess I will see later on.

Love Your Enemy

I've never been able to let this grudge go, but today may be the day. Several years ago, my very best friend in the world, J, ditched me in a not-so-honorable way. I won't go into the gory details because it's none of your fucking business, but suffice it to say I was hurt. Devastated. Betrayed in the worst way.

I've never gotten over it. I've rationalized, theorized, justified - tried everthing under the sun to move on and past it all, but couldn't let go. Instead I obsessed, cried, ranted, and generally made a mess of myself trying to understand what happened. Was it me? Was it her? Was it him (not what you're thinking, geez, you perv)? Understanding a situation is a huge part of my ability to forgive, but it's never happened in this case. I never knew why our friendship ended, and that knowledge is what I always needed to be able to move past the deep depression the whole thing left me in.

After confessing the whole incident and everything related to it to my old soul of a child, she (my daughter) hugged me in sympathy and ran off to shower. It gave me a few moments to reflect on what I'd bounced off of her sagely and compassionate person. I still love J, and that's my problem. She betrayed me, yes. She pained my heart even worse than a rape years before hurt my admittedly fragile ego. I don't understand what happened with her, or why.

But I love her still, and that's been my problem all along.

I've been angry more with myself because I spent all this time loving her, even after the fact. My little personal, egotistical attitude that one must leave behind those who betray your love has been telling my heart to hate her for what she did. I can't. And it hit me today that I don't have to hate her. Fuck you, ego - grow up.

I do love you J, even now. We had too many years of pure friendship to walk away. Yes, you hurt me. Yes, you abandoned me for reasons I don't understand. But I still carry what we had before, and not even you can take that away. I've been angry because I still held that memory, that love, but I don't have to be angry anymore. Yes, I still love you, J, even if you don't love me. And that's okay.


Sometimes pain is good. Sometimes pain is what reminds us that we still have a soul.

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