The filibuster continues.

For those of you just tuning in, I am daylogging a baby out of my wife’s womb. It’s all very complicated and pointless, so I heartily encourage you to page back through the recent daylogs for some additional clarification if you’re feeling vaguely masochistic.

I’ve been thinking a lot about the unplanned holiday atmosphere surrounding a birth-- how it’s one of the few times in life that you get to, no-questions-asked, take time off from work or school; call friends and family that you haven’t called in ages-- even if there’s a grudge standing in the way; essentially step out of ordinary time. The only other circumstances that I can come up with that match these criteria are generally sorrowful: a death in the family, a serious injury or sudden sickness.

So that said, what’s with these women who schedule their c-sections around important appoinments, meetings at work, etc.? And if I may rant a little further afield (and after all, what’s a filibuster for?) what’s with folks who insist on knowing the gender of their kid before it’s born? I’ve heard the arguments: “we want to know what kind of clothes and toys to get”; “our friends and family were bugging us to find out”; “we couldn’t control on our own curiosity, and damn it, if we can know, why shouldn’t we?”

How many times in life do you get to be genuinely surprised by something, but also guaranteed that the surprise will be pleasant?

Would you pencil in the moment of your death if you could?

*****

I’m pretty sure Heather’s walking around Green Lake as I sit here writing this in my glass tower cubicle. Including the approach to the lake from our house that’s at least a three mile loop. She’s done this loop the last three days, in addition to weeding the garden, doing the laundry, the dishes, vacuuming, mopping: generally anything she can think of to “get things started.” Mind you, she’s over nine months pregnant, she’s lost her mucus plug and she could go into labor at any moment. Hell, she has trouble tying her own shoes! And still she walks over three miles a day. Should I not be impressed by this?

*****

Most of life’s enduringly enjoyable gifts sneak up on us slowly (so-called love at first sight not withstanding). A birth is the exception that proves this rule. I’ve witnessed two so far in my life: my niece ten years ago and my son nearly three. Both times I could literally feel the fabric of the universe stretching, tearing and mending itself again. Each time, I swear, I saw God’s hands moving like He was the world's most insouciant sushi chef while I watched in grinning tearful awe.

God’s good at this creation shit. I can’t begrudge him that (though I might fault him on paying attention or staying sober.) And only He knows how soon He's gonna be at it again. But, I tell ya: as little faith as I have in my life, this one shred's unshakeable: what's coming is well worth the wait.

The three weirdest new customers this month

previous crazy customers not eligible for award

Third Place: A tweaker walked into the store holding a huge framed ducks unlimited print (presumably stolen). There were no other customers here, only employees. Then he held this large frame over his head and yelled, "Anybody wanna buy this?" Um, sir, we sell things here, not the other way around.

Second Place: We have some tacky 9-11 commemmorative junk that our gift supplier sent us. We couldn't send it back without paying a steep restocking fee, so we reluctantly put it on the shelves. A guy came into the store, saw this merchandise, and launched into a rant about how we wouldn't sell those things if we knew what was really behind 9-11. An exact quote: "I don't want to arrange any paradigms here but if you presupposed what was really going on you'd rethink your merchandise here." After ten minutes of listening to him butcher the english language trying to sound smart we were able to convince him that we did not, in fact, manufacture the merchandise in the back room ourselves just to offend him. Then he took one of our front-end supplier's catalogs so he could write an angry letter to them.

Few things piss me off more than people who will say or do any crazy, mean, propagandizing, or inappropriate things to us because we are a captive audience and we have to be polite or risk losing our jobs. Don't push an inappropriate line of conversation on people who can't leave or tell you to piss off. This goes for the conspiracy nut, and also for this next guy:

First Place: A man who looked normal at first glance came into the store pulling a cart loaded with several copies of a crappy self-published book. When you actually watched his nonverbal behavior for five consecutive seconds, you could tell he was probably schizotypal and probably kept in check by medication. He made sure we had enough free copies of this wonderful book for each employee. It was a cold-war paranoia / fundamentalist / nuclear apocalypse book self-published in the early 70's. Hey, genius, if the book was published over 30 years ago and we're not glowing in the dark yet, maybe you should find some new propaganda. Cold war ended. We won.

Glancing through the contents of the book it also became clear that the book had a homophobic, misogynistic, white power theme going on. Few things piss me off more than people who will do mean, propagandizing, or inappropriate things to us because we are a captive audience and we have to be polite or risk losing our jobs. When you hand a book like that to a gay, atheist, not-entirely-white guy who would get fired if he told you what you deserve to hear, you've crossed the damn line.

But here's the best part. Shortly after this I was walking down the street to get my take-out lunch order from the town cafe. The guy was handing out books at a store between the cafe and where I work. When I picked up my order, I waved over the head waitress Missy. Now, Missy is this totally ballsy grrrl who will say whatever the hell she wants, and loudly. So I asked her if the nutbag handing out conspiracy books was in yet (I knew he hadn't been). She wanted to know what I was talking about, so I explained, trying to make it sound like the most interesting, pressing piece of gossip she'd hear all day. This cafe is our town's gossip depot, so the employees are quick to pass on every bit before someone else beats them to it.

As I turn around to leave I see the conspiracy nut pulling his little handcart full of loony literature towards the door of the cafe, sooner than I thought he'd arrive. I open up the door for him, and just as I'm hurrying past him I hear Missy yell loudly enough for all the cooks, waitresses, and customers to hear her: "HEY, YOU GUYS HEAR THERE'S SOME WACKJOB HANDING OUT CONSPIRACY BOOKS TO EVERYONE IN TOWN?"

I had to spend the rest of the day watching the door of the store just in case the wackjob came back with a gun, but it was so totally worth it.

Another gloomy day at the gas station. I am kinda glad though, when it is raining outside few people want to get out of their cars and get wet, thus we are much less busy on these dreary days. There is a small cooler near the two liter bottles of Coca-Cola which doesn't work anymore. A couple days ago it kinda caught fire and since then it just won't keep things cool. I told my boss that the compressor probably got cooked and exploded. She just kinda smiled and said "Yeah, and you know what? That is the fifth time in less than one year that this has happened." I told her that they would be better off just buying a new cooler, but of course, that is out of reach due to major budget restrictions. So the cooler just sits there. Day and night, night and day. Humming away, and frightening our customers.

People won't stop fucking stealing gas!

Today at work we had four people drive away without paying for their gas. One of them had pumped over $100.00 into those red gas cans, and he just drove away. I got his license plate number though, so he shouldn't get far. We have them all on video. If it continues to happen, we may just have to have someone stand outside at the pumps and fucking babysit the people pumping gas. Now that is a job that I want! It would be nice to get paid for sitting and watching people pumping gas.

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