Thursday, June 28, 2007

Adam hates me.

Adam has been making fun of me all day and since I didn't have anything to write about, I figured I'd post this picture, defacing him for all the Internet to see.

The fun part was doing this while he sat in the cubicle right behind me. The fear of getting caught was so exciting!

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

My cheeks are sore from smiling.

On Sunday I went to the Gay Pride Parade, which was generally uneventful save for one leather thong (which, by the way, was on a very old man with the saggiest ass I've ever seen. I didn't know they could look like that. It looked like two empty pillowcases dipped in self-tanner) and a few make-shift pasties worn by the ladies on the NOW float. I was surprised how corporate the parade was; there was a Chipotle float, a Jewel / Osco float. There were even several beer companies who just had someone drive their trucks along the parade route with a couple of rainbows taped to the sides. Alissa complained the entire time that there was a large lack of Ds in relation to previous years. The only one I saw was rubber and shoved in my face after the parade; some man, upon seeing my shirt, spoke into his dildo as if it were a microphone and asked, "'Promises, Promises?' What kind of promises do you make?" I replied, "Um, none to you."

Afterward I met up with Couch and we went to Berlin for the DJ set by Men, former Le Tigre members JD Samson and Johanna Fateman. They started late (at six) and Couch left me by my lonesome, but it was actually still pretty fun because I just danced around by myself and drank a lot of Miller Lites. (So many, in fact, that I lost count. They were two dollars and I'm estimating I spent forty.) To make that long story short, I was at Berlin for nearly eight hours. John and Leah stopped in for a bit and that was fun, especially since we were dancing right next to JD and two of the girls from Office. I had had enough beer to say, "Fuck it," and I talked to the tambourine player, who was really excited that I recognized her. Likewise for the drummer, who shared a cigarette with me and kissed me on the cheek. And then I was like, "I am going to dance with JD Samson. I don't care if I have to push eight lesbians out of the way." And I did dance with her, and she pretended to stab me with a plastic sword. It was pretty awesome. And when she left about an hour later, she waved goodbye to me, and I stopped her and told her that Le Tigre was the first show I had the courage to see alone (as well as my first show in Chicago) and how much I loved the band.

I wasn't really hungover on Monday but I called in sick anyway, since my body was really, really sore from dancing for seven hours. My cousin was also in town, and he'd been calling me all weekend but I kept missing him, so I met him downtown at the Art Institute and then we went to lunch. My cousin is my mom's age, and he's the type of guy who calls people "cats" and places "joints" with absolute sincerity. He's also an artist, so it was fun to go to the museum with him and watch him freak out at seeing really famous pieces.

On Monday night I went to iO to see Christina perform her first improv show. She was really funny and her group did very well together (much better than the other groups, who made me want to die), and it was really exciting to see her performing again. Unfortunately, she was too funny and her body couldn't handle it: she woke me up at five yesterday morning in tears because she had severe abdominal pain. We hopped in a cab and went to the hospital, where we spent the next seven hours. She's better now, which is all I've been allowed to say. She also instructed me to start referring to her as Mary Stuart Masterson in this blog, but she was on morphine at the time, so I'm not sure I actually have to do that.

After a quick and sexy nap, I had Kristin and friends Tony and Gary come over so I could take their headshots. I'm not sure if they are any good because it was dark outside and my camera kind of sucks, but they only need them for auditions at the Second City Conservatory, so they might do okay. It was kind of fun, though, and even if they aren't the best headshots, I think the pictures turned out well. Then we drank some 312 (which was my payment) and Kristin, Tony, and I went to Funky Buddha for a DJ set by Peaches, which was also a lot of fun. I danced very much and lost my shit when she played "Lip Gloss." She ended her set by getting on stage and singing "Lovertits," and I was pretty damn happy when we left at two in the morning.

And now I'm tired. But! I made it work! And EARLY! And the rest of the week isn't so bad, considering we're leaving today at three to go to the Disco Picnic, tomorrow I spend the afternoon in a training session in which I don't need to pay attention, and Friday is the first day I get to take advantage of our summer schedule by leaving at noon. And I got my bonus check, finally.

Things are going pretty swell right now.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007


I'm sorry for not posting, but I haven't been at work for the past two days, and I spent the majority of the weekend either drunk, dancing, or both at the same time. When I write a real post tomorrow, you'll get the following great stories:

1. I saw the gay pride parade.


3. I danced with JD Samson.

4. I chatted with two gals from Office.

5. I spent seven and a half hours in the Illinois Masonic emergency room.

Just you wait! Tomorrow's post will be totes exciting!

Friday, June 22, 2007

She's going to make it after all.

My friend, Chris (better known by her last name, Couch), is living in Chicago for the summer. I'll admit that I don't know Couch THAT well. I think I've probably only had five interactions with her since we met my sophomore year in college. They are as follows:

1. We met at a party at the Lifestyles House. She drove me home to my substance-free dorm (ha!). My friends, whom she also carted back to Converse Hall, were singing selections from The Little Mermaid at the top of their lungs.

2. On the Monday after the party where I was too drunk to make it home, I saw her while on my way to class. She laughed immediately, right at my embarrassed face.

3. I ran into her on the Quad one day and she had me sign a petition to rehire a popular English professor who had just lost his job.

4. I went to a dinner at my friend Dan's apartment and drank really bad wine from a HUGE bottle given to Couch by a couple she babysat for. She told me that she once saw the previously mentioned professor making out with an English student in the street.

5. She visited Chicago last year and we went out in a group for lots of drinks. This was the night I first watched people play Guitar Hero 2, which promptly made me sick.

So, Couch has basically only known me in the context of unscrupulous English professors and drinking. Oh, and this blog, which is basically about me drinking and my, let's face it, path to becoming an unscrupulous English professor.

I'm really excited because Couch is living in Chicago for the summer. Apparently if you just freelance for a living, you don't really need to keep roots in a city and can just decide, "Hey! I want to try living THERE for a few months." (I'd totally do this if I knew for a fact that I would not be able to get insurance - as I've already been rejected once - and I recently saw Sicko which made me terrified to get sick.)

I'm really excited about hanging out with Couch this summer because she's the type of gal who invites me to do awesome things like seeing Stomp the Yard in the park. I mentioned this in my last post; the plan was to get some gin and then head down to Grant Park for a slice of cinematic gold. Then I got an email from her this morning:

Hey kids:

Stomp the Yard is tonight, for free, 8:30, Rainbow Park and Beach (I have no idea where that is, but I have a feeling that unicorns live there). Invite your friends. I will also bring a flask. I encourage you to do the same. Also, if you're thinking 'hey, maybe I'm kind of a pussy and won't be showing up,' here's the trailer:

I think you'll be showing up.


* I just looked it up, apparently Rainbow Park and Beach is "located at 77th and the Lake." I just moved here, so I hope you guys have some clue of how to get to that location.

Now, if you're like Couch and have NO IDEA ABOUT HOW CHICAGO WORKS, you should click this link to see where Rainbow Park is in relation to where I live. Notice that dotted line in the lower left hand corner near the park? Yeah. That's the Illinois - Indiana state line. It's, um, kind of far. Needless to say, we're not seeing Stomp the Yard tonight. But hey! Bless her heart for trying! My other friends wouldn't have even entertained the idea of getting drunk and watching the movie in their living rooms!

I need to take an angry nap.

My phone stopped working last night, which is great timing. The weekends are totally the best time to not have a phone, especially when last weekend I spent my days alone, reading at coffee shops because I had no one to make plans with.

I talked to my mother several times last night on AIM and on Christina's phone as we tried to settle the tricky business of buying me a new phone. Now, I don't particularly think it's very difficult to just get a phone, especially since I emailed her two weeks ago with the phone I'd like. Unfortunately, my mother thinks getting a free phone is kind of like buying a computer. She called and asked if I had checked the "specs" and they looked okay. She asked me this in 2007. Of course I didn't check the specs. I saw that it makes and receives calls, which my phone currently does not. It seems okay to me!!

Then she called and said, "Did you know this isn't a flip phone?" "Really?? I COULDN'T TELL. THANKS FOR CHECKING THAT FOR ME."

THEN she called again and said, "This phone doesn't have an antenna."

My mother is a SCIENTIST. She programs computers. Yet she lives in a world where AT&T would sell their customers phones that "don't have antennas."

She also decided that it was a great night to berate me for texting too much. It's very ironic that I can only communicate through text messages now, and my new phone won't come for another five days. What can you do?

ANYWAY, moving on. I'm exhausted this morning because I didn't get a lot of sleep and had crazy dreams which may be the result of watching the 1985 TV miniseries version of Alice in Wonderland, which I current have from Netflix. I'm tired, and I got to work an hour late, and I just want to go home and nap / die, but I can't because we have a shitload of work to do. And then I have a shitload of things to do this weekend. Tonight I'm going to see Stomp the Yard for free in Grant Park (drunk, natch) with Couch, which will most likely be awesome. And it's gay pride weekend, which means I'll be weaving through throngs of eight-foot-tall drag queens and armies of assless chaps on Sunday since the parade conveniently passes within a block from my house. I guess I'm going to go because, as Adam said earlier this week, you rarely get a chance to get drunk in the street. And I also decided that it'll be fun to see how many free condoms I can get. It's like when I was in college I'd see how many Gideon Bibles I could pick up in a day. It's a fun game. Really.

And I'll tell you what I'm definitely not doing this weekend: going to see Angelina Jolie's black-face movie. Fuck Jolie. I find it deliciously ironic, by the way, that she's going to star as Dagney Taggart in Atlas Shrugged. She's perfect for the role, and her political beliefs are the antithesis of Ayn Rand's, which proves that she's a goddamn retard.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Tasteless humor: an experiment.

How do the senses of humor belonging to a 25-year-old woman and a 17-year-old boy differ? The results may shock you.

First, I tested Megan, who has a Bachelor's degree in both English and German and a Master's in Professional Writing and Editing. She is an editor in our nation's capitol, and comes from an upper-middle class family, of which many members were employed by various government agencies. Megan occasionally rereads Thomas Mann's Doctor Faustus for fun.

After Megan's trail, I used the same joke on David, my seventeen-year-old and video-game enthusiast brother. He comes from an upper-middle class family in rural Virginia and owns many Smash Mouth and Linkin Park albums.

Now, I ask you, Internet: who is the more sophisticated?

Hey! What's YOUR favorite infection?!

Things I think are really cute:
1. Mad Cow (Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy)
2. Syphilis (Treponema pallidum)
3. Lyme Disease (Borrelia Burgdoferi)
4. The Flu (Orthomyxovirus)
5. Malaria (Plasmodium falciparum)
6. Mono (Infectious mononucleosis)

Things I don't think are cute at all:
1. Flesh Eating Disease (Streptococcus pyogenes)
2. Ebola
3. Sleeping sickness (Trypanosoma brucei)
4. HIV (Human immunodeficiency virus)
5. Polio (Poliomyelitis)
6. Mange (Sarcoptes scabei)

Thanks, Mom.

I got an email this morning from my parents with the subject line, "Another picture of you published."

The body contained a link to a article. When I clicked on it, I found this:

I showed it to Christina and she said, "Wow, you have really nice pecs. Also, you look like Gay Harry Potter."

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Truth in Comedy.

The other day Megan told me that I should update many times a day so that people will keep coming back to read my blog. I was like, "I barely have anything interesting to say once a day, five days a week! How can I update several times in one day?!" I mean, sure, it's great for procrastination. (I fucked up my Sudoku this morning and whenever I realize I've made a mistake, I give up. I also get angry and scratch all over the puzzle. Today I wrote, "Fuck you!!!" and "I hate Sudoku!!!" all over it.) But seriously, my daily statistics have dropped under 100 visitors a day for the first time in a month and a half, so either people have stopped being interested in huge labias and big old hairy vaginas, or I've started to alienate my readers with long posts about off-Broadway musicals. I figure I can make amends by talking about regular stuff occasionally, too.

Last night I saw Janeane Garofalo at a theater three blocks from my house. It was pretty much one of the top five greatest things to ever happen to me, ever. I may have already talked about this here before, but back in 1997, Janeane had an HBO comedy special which I taped and watched repeatedly for years. I still have this tape, but no longer have a VCR. (Fun fact! Say Anything is on the same tape, and I hate that movie, but I was too afraid to record over it because I didn't want to risk screwing up and taping over Janeane.) Anyway, her 1997 one-hour special pretty much defined major parts of my life. For example, I credit her for instigating my own journey away from religion. It was the first time, really, that I thought about religion in a negative way and how it, as a social construct, is just a silly thing. She brought this up in the context of the crises in the Middle East and many factions fighting over the "books of religion," and it pretty much amounted to people in this country fighting over Grisham novels, or "declaring The Bridges of Madison County sacred whereupon nobody builds." To a fourteen year old with a crush on a disaffected thirty-something actress who just happened to be in his favorite movie of all time (Reality Bites, natch), it was quite the mind-blowing experience.

I still quote from this tape, ten years later, and it's fun because I can sort of pass-off her jokes as my own because, honestly, who remembers Janeane Garofalo bits from 1997? I love how topical they can be; for example, in her criticism of summer blockbuster movies, she said, "I think we all remember where we were the day rush hour hit the water. That was an important day." (SPEED 2: CRUISE CONTROL REFERENCE!) But sometimes, her soundbites come in handy. Whenever Christina is down about Some Dude and she's all, "WHY DON'T I HAVE A BOYFRIEND?!?!," I think of the final bit of Janeane's routine. She tells us that, after her boyfriend broke up with her on the phone, therefore forcing her to obsessively check her voicemail several times a day and expecting the apologetic message begging for forgiveness, she hired Wilford Brimley to record the greeting when she logs on. "Kiddo," he says, "if he can't see how special you are, he oughta have his HEAD EXAMINED." It always cheers Christina up when I tell her that, too.

The parts I remember most, of course, are those in which Janeane recounts her own history of romantic disappointment. She talks about recently seeing Chasing Amy (remember: 1997) and being so angry at the scene where Ben Affleck professes his love to Joey Lauren Adams, "the baby-voiced lesbian." She says, "That will never happen to me. If someone told me they loved me, it would just make me not like them. Be aloof! What's your problem? You want me to like you? Don't pick up that damn phone!" As an awkward teenager harboring secret crushes, I UNDERSTOOD. I refused to tell anyone how I felt about them for fear of rejection. And now, as I'm blossoming out of my decade-long awkward stage and becoming, I guess, somewhat attractive (question mark?), I get it, because I don't want people just telling me they LIKE ME. I'm so used to having to WORK for it. LET ME FIGHT FOR YOU. IT'S ALL I'VE EVER KNOWN.

And of course, there's my favorite quote, taken directly from Wikiquote (thank God for the Internets): "Everybody else seems to find a soulmate, have you noticed that? Everybody else seems to be able to make it happen, and I'm talking about even people-- Okay. I can't make it happen yet somehow Chang and Eng, the Siamese twins attached to the chest, and Stephen Hawking, and the Shine guy, and that kid who shot his face off are all happily married and breeding. And I don't want to sound like a dick about this, but come on! I mean, these people have sex! And uhm, not only that, but Chang and Eng fathered, like, nine and ten kids a piece. While being attached to the chest. And I know that the ladies as a rule are tolerant. I know this about the female sex; if they like the guy, they're tolerant. But we are really pushing the envelope here with Stephen Hawking and the guy who shot his face off."

Clearly, Janeane Garofalo is my patron saint of comedy. Seriously, I think I base what I think is funny on her delivery and self-deprecation. I think the rule here is that if I make fun of myself before everyone else does, it's okay; I might as well beat everyone to the punch.

I'm hot shit, obvs.

First of all, I just want to share that I'm hungover and wearing flip-flops just to see if I can get away with it on a Wednesday.

Now, for the real business. I got the following MySpace message the other day:

(Click to enlarge.)

I always thought I had a face for radio, but now I've found my calling, thanks to a man who has the following picture of himself posted on the Internet:

Sexxy! Oh, and I just want to point out my other favorite parts of his "MySpace" page. I'm reading through it so you don't have to. You'll thank me later.

Also, this is what happens when you put your resume on Craigslist:
Literally five times a day. Make it stop, please.

Drunk posts are 0% funny 100% of the time.

Five things:

1. Janeane Garofalo, WHO I SAW TONIGHT, said that if she could have "a shower suit," she would use it because she's at the point in her life where she'd prefer to never be naked. I think that's where I'll be, emotionally, in ten years.

2. I went to a bar on Halsted tonight and the jukebox played THUNDERCLAP NEWTON and T. REX.

3. I'm not that drunk, more tipsy that drunk. But I did immediately start playing "Night Moves" by Bob "BOB SEGER IS ROCK AND ROLL" Seger and the Silver Bullet Band on my iPod because OMG LOLZ that song is the best ever.

4. If I was a famous singer, I'd end every set - EVERY ONE - with "Night Moves."

5. I'm drunk enough that I'm updating my blog in my underwear. And for all of you ladies, and probably three dudez, who've been wonderin' (no G): it's BRIEFS (at least right now).


Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Monday, June 18, 2007

It's raining irony.

I'm supposed to get a check today from my boss. A bonus. A real bonus. Extra money for all that hard work I (used to) do. It's all going to my Visa bill, which is still three times the amount of my bonus, but still, it's nice to feel like my hard work sort of paid off.

I'm sure I'll hate this job again by tomorrow morning.

Also, I'm not wearing socks today.

In other news, I still don't have a cell phone because Kristel sent it to my old address. I'm not mad, because I should have double-checked to make sure she had my current address. I also shouldn't have left it on her porch. Even though I credit myself for the phone-less disaster, I still managed to get angry at my mother on Friday when I realized I wouldn't get the phone until Monday. Last week, I found a new phone online that I want, and since we can upgrade my account, I emailed her the link on the AT&T website. She replied, "It's a nice phone, I'll order it next week." So, on Friday, I had no phone, and the first person I wanted to call and bitch to was my mother for not ordering me a new phone. This, I think, is a pretty good example of the type of relationship I have with her. It's much easier to blame her for things I did than blame myself.

I think I'm learning a lot about myself lately.

I learned that I cannot just live my life without regard for how I make other people feel. Coincidentally, I gave up on Atlas Shrugged because OMG BO-RING. I picked up This Book Will Save Your Life by A. M. Homes on Thursday and read over one hundred pages in one sitting. I thought, "So this is what it's like to be able to read a book and enjoy it?" Ayn Rand had the power to make me pass out after an hour's worth of reading (in which I would probably get through maybe twenty pages, only if they happened to be dealing with Dagney's longing for rough sex). I finished Homes's book yesterday and I liked it a lot; it was the direct anti-thesis of anything Rand ever wrote: it's about a wealthy man who realizes he's not ALIVE and starts to live by doing things for other people. Redemption through good samaritanism (which, my buddy Spell Check, SHOULD be a word).

I was in my neighborhood Borders on Saturday and Notes on a Scandal was in the It's Gay Pride Month!!! display. I'm sure all of the lesbians are thrilled.

One of my pictures is featured this week on Gapers Block. Check it out!

Sunday, June 17, 2007

It's Day-Day Day.

Happy Father's Day, Day-Day.

(I still don't have a phone, so this is the best I can do.)

Friday, June 15, 2007

Much more entertaining than 110 in the Shade.

I was going to post a blog about how gay it is that I've been watching Tony awards performances on YouTube all morning, but then I found this:

Adam is currently watching it and I can hear him giggling like a little girl from my cubicle.

Thursday, June 14, 2007


Just so alls y'alls know, I've mentally checked out at work at this point. I made it to work this morning, albeit five minutes late, but I had a miserable hangover and have been wanting to die every since I got here. But, as Adam has conveniently pointed out, I haven't worked a full week since April, so I'm trying to actually make it five days in a row. Plus, I should start saving my sick leave for a real illness, like Beach Week.

Also, I'm only going to tuck in my shirt if I happen to have an interview later in the day. That's my new philosophy.

The one good thing I can say about work is that, with all the free time I've given myself, I'm getting really, really good at Sudoku. Morgan suggested that my resume should simply be a completed Sudoku. Level: Hard.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

On desperation.

I opened my MySpace inbox this morning to find the following:

Of course, my interest was piqued. What, exactly, did 'Red Shoes' have to tell me?

You cut to my core, SHAUN. You know me so well.

So then I did indeed go to their page and discovered what might possibly be the worst band I've ever heard. (Okay, this is the worst band I've ever heard.) So, friends, please go visit Red Shoes and add them. They're trying to get 1000 friends!!!

Monday, June 11, 2007

Atlas Blogged: Page 250.

I'm officially a fourth of the way through Atlas Shrugged, and there have been lots of crazy happenings in Ayn Rand's screwball version of America since I last wrote anything about it.

The major event was that Dagny Taggart built a train line with this screwy metal invented by Hank Reardon. This duo are pretty much the greatest people in the book, since they were born rich yet still make it their biggest priority to make as much money as possible. I think at one point they both agree that using up the earth's natural resources is absolutely fine, since "someone will someday figure out a replacement." These are the protagonists. These are the people I'm supposed to relate to. Anyway, long story short: they build this line called the John Galt Line and it's amazing and they blow everyone away and prove them wrong. And then they fuck:

He stood looking down at her naked body, he leaned over, she heard his voice - it was more a statement of contemptuous triumph than a question: "You want it?" Her answer was more a gasp than a word, her eyes closed, her mouth open: "Yes."


While Dagny's getting it rough from Hank (who, by the way, tells her that he doesn't love her and wanted her in the way one wanted a whore), everyone's walking around saying, "Who is John Galt?" It's more of a rhetorical question, really, a symbol for the type of question that will never have an answer. Dagny used this idea for the name of her train line, I suppose because "The Chicken or the Egg? Line" was just a little too long.

Also, there's a pirate. I swear to God, there is a PIRATE roaming on the high seas pilaging boats owned by "The People's Republic of [Insert European Country Here]." (This novel is supposed to take place "in the near future," and I'm guessing Ms. Rand expected all of Europe to be Red by 1970. Also, she didn't figure in the idea that people wouldn't ride trains anymore. Whatevs.) The pirate's name is Ragnar Danneskjold. Seriously. And guess what? He happened to go to Patrick Henry University (SYMBOLISM ALERT!) with our favorite rich Argentinian playboy, Fransisco Domingo Carlos Andres Sebastian d'Anconia.

I've only read a fourth of this novel and there's already a fucking pirate.

Odds and Ends.

There are only about six of us at work today and I don't really know why. For the first hour I thought perhaps today was a holiday and I came to work by accident, as I was the only one in the cold, dark, scary office. Then people slowly trickled in around nine, but still, there aren't many of us here. Both of my managers are out today, and so is Adam, so I have no one to talk to / annoy. I think I'll be leaving early today.

I have an interview tomorrow and my recruiter actually called me and PREPARED me for it. She told me how to answer questions and what I should ask. I didn't ask for this advice. It's weird to have someone actually be helpful.

I did not watch The Sopranos last night because I stopped caring about it six years ago. But the second season of Big Love starts tonight and I'm going to do my best to follow it every week, since I no longer have HBO OnDemand.

Also, the Tony Awards were last night, and Spring Awakening won Best Musical, which makes me want to vom. I've only seen this video from the show, but I think it pretty much sums up what happens when you let Duncan Sheik write a musical. This is what Jonathan Larson did to America. And yes, there IS a line that goes, "Looks so nasty in those khakis."

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Coronas and ghosts.

I had what was most likely the most bizarre 24-hour period in my life. Move over, Jack Bauer; there's a nuclear bomb in Virginia and it blew up. All over my face.

I had to get up extra early to look nice for David's graduation. I was wearing some nice new khakis and a nice shirt and a nice tie and I just KNEW it was all overkill. Turns out, I was right. I didn't get many good pictures from the ceremony since I was so far back, but I did snap this one. This is what you wear to a high school graduation if you live in Montross, Virginia:

It was a very nice day for a graduation. It wasn't too hot, although I did manage to get some sunburn on my face because I was exposed to sunlight for longer than three minutes. My graduation, which was SIX YEARS AGO JESUS CHRIST I'M OLD, was very rainy and gross, so there aren't ANY good pictures from that afternoon. Not even this one:

Speaking of me being "old," I ran to pick up some shrimp for my mom after the ceremony, and the woman working the register asked me if I had graduated that morning. Sigh.

I spent the next couple of hours getting drunk tipsy with these people:

After a lot of Coronas and sausage balls and watching my dad shooting groundhogs in the backyard, I realized that I had to sober up so I could drive to Richmond to visit my friend Kristel. I did it in record time, too, and was pretty proud of myself, although my head was killing me the entire time I was driving. Which was an hour, by the way, which is important for you to understand my frustration when I got to Kristel's house and she didn't answer her cell phone. For forty minutes. Meanwhile, I walked around Monument Avenue and drunk people on third-floor balconies made fun of me. Finally I sat in my parked car and called people for advice. Should I just leave now? Should I stay and fuck around Richmond for a couple of hours and then go home and tell my parents how much fun Kristel and I had? Should I break into her apartment and wait for her drunk ass to get home and then punch her in the face? While coming up with a plan of action, Kristel FINALLY called me back. Then this happened:

I went up to her apartment and met Some Dude who she had just had a blind date with. Now, I think I'd be more angry had I known that she was just drunk with Some Dude while I was sweating my ass off and having strangers make fun of me from the confines of their porch if Kristel wasn't HOME with a BLIND DATE. There was so much awkwardness going on there and she felt so bad because the guy was such a Some Dude it was painful to listen to him speak (he really liked Wal-Mart) that I couldn't help but laugh at the situation. And then I made her buy me Thai food. Everyone (well, me) wins!

To make a long story short, Kristel and I came to the mutual conclusion that, yes, we should get drunk for the second time that day, so we hung out on her porch for a while with her neighbors (who I LOVED, by the way. They'd never seen Stella Artois before and asked us if they were "mini wine bottles." ACGHH I MISS THE SOUTH) before we left to meet some of her friends at a bar. The bar was fun, I suppose, especially since I was just drinking Bud Light (which were $2.75 a bottle, by the way. ACGHH I MISS THE SOUTH) and got to make fun of Kristel's blind date some more. Then some OTHER DUDE came over and was all up in her grill and it was really entertaining and I thought that there would be absolutely no way karma would bite me in the ass for laughing directly at her face.

At one point, though, Kristel went to the bathroom, and upon her return slammed her hands down onto the table and said, "GUESS WHO I RAN INTO?" Oh, no. Oh oh no no. Who else but our principal's son, with whom we went to Governor's School and was a general douchebag. He came over and, before he could put a word in with Kristel, which was his obvious plan, Kristel shouted, "DO YOU REMEMBER TYLER?" Then he started talking to me as if we were friends and he didn't spend a year calling me Howdy Doody and then going to Boys State with me and ignoring me for a week. I remembered why I don't still live in Virginia.

We left the bar and, since I was drunky all over again, we shared lots of secrets, which sounded like a great idea at the time, but several hours later I realize that I should keep all of mine boxed up where only my troubled subconscious has access to them. And THEN we got back to her house to find that I had lost my phone. Well, I left it on the porch when we left and one of her neighbors took it inside. The problem, however, was that I had to leave at seven the next morning to make it back to Montross so I could go to church with my parents. Ouch. So we knocked on a few doors but were not successful, seeing as it was after two in the morning. So I wrapped up in a down comforter on her couch and called it a night.

I woke up this morning in a sweat because A. It's June in Virginia and it's hot and B. It's June, Virginia, hotness, down comforter, LEATHER COUCH. I went to throw off the comforter, only to find that I was only wearing underwear. Now, most of you who have read this blog know that I have issues and, while not a Never-Nude, I do have a No-Nudity Clause in my contract with life, meaning that I don't hang around without a shirt very often. To find myself in my friend's living room at six in the morning in grey briefs was rather shocking, and I quickly scrambled to get my pants and tshirt. Only to find that they were not there. At all. Now, because I had just gotten roughly four hours of sleep and I was hungover as hell, the only rational explanation I could come up with was that someone broke into Kristel's apartment, found me on the couch, and stole my clothes. This made perfect sense considering her door was unlocked.

When Kristel came out of her room at 6:45, I was sitting there in my underwear and a button-up shirt (which I had taken off before going to bed and left on the coffee table, and which the thieves surprisingly did not steal) and I said, "I have a problem." I told her the "situation" and she just stood there, baffled. I pointed out that the door was OPEN and OBVIOUSLY someone broke in, and she even walked into the hallway and looked down the stairs for anyone - what she was expecting to find, I'm not exactly sure. I started to freak out: first my phone, then my CLOTHES, and my wallet! Which was in my pants!

Then Kristel walked into her kitchen and shouted, "Found them!" My pants, tshirt, and socks were sitting on her kitchen counter. So obviously, these people broke in and decided to just fuck with me. It's the only explanation. Unless you believe in ghosts.

I'm ready to be back in Chicago where everything is normal.

Friday, June 08, 2007

The first nineteen hours.

I've been home for less than twenty-four hours and I've already avoided an encounter with an ex-friend in Wal-Mart. Luckily my mother has FINALLY figured out that I like to avoid people who, you know, STILL LIVE IN MONTROSS and warned me that my old friend now WORKS at Wal-Mart. It made me feel better about my life.

Here's another anecdote: My parents' house is one story, but it's very long, and my parents have this habit of just screaming at each other across the house when they want to relay messages rather than just walking down the hallway. (Maybe I should get them walkie-talkies for Christmas?) Anyway, last night, I overheard the following exhange:

"JANE TYLER." (Yes, my mother's name is Jane Tyler. Get over it.)








The end.

UPDATE: I posted that nine minutes ago. My father just asked me if I want to ride with him to Wal-Mart again.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Loads of good news.

1. Christina and I got the apartment OF OUR DREAMS. Well, at least of our dreams of living in limbo between Andersonville and Edgewater. But still, we'll have a dining room and a fake fireplace framed by book shelves. IT'S WHAT I ALWAYS WANTED.

2. I randomly had a staffing agency interview yesterday and they got me an interview for a job next Tuesday.

3. I am HUNG. OVER. (not good news) and woke up LATE (not good news) and HAD NOT PACKED FOR MY TRIP (not good news) but I managed to fit everything into my small suitcase and did not have to resort to any plastic bags. NO PLASTIC BAGS (good news!!!).

Ok, Virginia now KTHXBYE.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

I should watch more TV.

I went with Adam to this happy hour yesterday afternoon. It was with Alissa's company, celebrating(?) the last day of some dude she worked with. Adam used to work there, so it wasn't so weird that he was there, but I did happen to interview for a job there, so it was kind of awkward. Granted, the guy who interviewed me probs. looked more uncomfortable that I did, so I wasn't sweating it. Also, I got drunk from three beers. Holla, Happy Hour!

At one point, this guy that Adam used to work with sat down and was asking him about his job here. Adam said he loved it, that even though he didn't get paid as much as he did at his old place, he did manage to watch three seasons of Battlestar Galactica in an entire week. When you think about it that way, yes, our job is kind of awesome. I doubt a real job would allow me to blog as much, or to create my own lolcats, or to watch all of 30Rock in three days, or blatantly not even pretend to work by doing crosswords and sudoku puzzles (by the way, I finished the sudoku in the Red Eye yesterday in five minutes or so, and the Red Eye guy took seventeen minutes. I'm really smart at numbers now), but at the same time, I'd like to be doing something somewhat productive, so I can actually do something with my life, like, eventually. I'm not looking to buy a condo or anything. I just want to be able to drink a lot of gin AND still have money to go on a vacation.

Speaking of vacations: I'm going to Virginia tomorrow until Sunday. My bro-bro is graduating, so I'm anticipating some sort of visible excitement rather than his usual apathetic angst. It might get weird. Also, it'll be nice to get out of Chicago for a while and not deal with the job hunting bullshit. I updated my resume on CareerBuilder for the first time in a month and I wanted to cry. I'd much rather sit in my parents' backyard and read not do anything for a couple of days. I'm also looking forward to seeing my dad, who is doing pretty well, by the way - just three more weeks of chemo and then we'll see how things are. And if you're a Virginian friend and want to get together, I might be swayed to travel on Friday night for good times, either in Fredericksburg (preferably) or Richmond.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Oprah loves chicks with dicks.

Oprah has finally made Middlesex, one of my favorite books, Important and Relevant today by choosing it as her new book club pick. Notice the big fat seal in the top right corner. It's much more impressive than the one on my copy.

How did this become my life?

My manager walked up to my desk just now and said, "Have you ever seen Ghostbusters? The first one?"

"Yes," I replied, curious about where this was going.

"You know them Gozer dogs at the end of the movie?"

"Um, sure..."

"Did you know there are dogs that look like that in real life?!"


"I'm gonna have to get him to send me the picture! Baby Daddy was walking around Park Ridge this weekend and there was this woman walking her horse, and then this dude came up with that fuckin' dog and it was as big as the horse! Can you believe that? Those dogs are REAL."

This is someone's idea of motivation.

I got the following email this morning:

Dear John, [ugh]

Save the Date!

The Office of Mission and Values invites you to "Shake Your Groove Thing" with your colleagues at the "Disco Inferno" university picnic.

I suppose this means I can't get a new job until the 28th, because there is no way I'm going to miss out on free alcohol. Although do I want to risk "shaking my groove thing" in front of my coworkers? It's a scary thought.

Also, my boss came to work today after a three-week absence. I asked my manager where he was, and she said, "Well, his cousin passed and the funeral was over the weekend. And before that he was helping with the arrangements. And before that, I'm not sure." I feel kind of guilty, knowing now that he was out for a funeral. And all this time I assumed he was just taking some deserved time off from his busy schedule of only coming to work three days a week.

Monday, June 04, 2007

Atlas Blogged: Page 122.

I just had this fantastic idea about creating a blog about reading Atlas Shrugged and calling it Atlas Blogged (OMG LOLZ!), but then I remembered that I have too many blogs already. So instead, I'll just update you guys on here, because I know you all care so much.

So, I'm on page 122, which is just a little more than a tenth of the way through the novel. So far this is what I've gotten out of it: the railroad industry is not as exciting as architecture, and I like The Fountainhead better. But the nice thing about this book is there are a lot more soap opera-worthy characters. There are two aristocratic families mentioned so far: the Taggarts, who own Taggart Transcontinental, and the d'Anconia, who own a bunch of copper mines. Let me pause for a moment: the family name d'Anconia. That is some Dynasty shit. And to prove it, the heir of the d'Anconia riches is named Fransisco. Fransisco Domingo Carlos Andres Sebastian d'Anconia. I swear to God. You learn about this amazing name in the following line, which I want all of you to take in because it's how Rand introduces the adult version of the character into the narrative: "Fransisco Domingo Carlos Andres Sebastian d'Anconia sat on the floor, playing marbles." SRSLY, Ayn?

Fransisco D. C. A. S. d'Anconia, or "Frisco" for short, is despised by Dagny Taggart, the sister of the incompetent owner of Taggart Transcontinental. She's a powerful lady, so of course she's the only one who knows how to do anything with the business. But hold on, feminists! Dagny likes to get raped. Yes, you know when you have a strong Rand character when she likes it real rough and forced. She's so strong, she needs to feel weak! And while "Frisco" seems like a worthless playboy, we know he's actually a good guy because he rapes Dagny a few times in the twenty-page flashback where we learn about their childhood together. Again, quoting Ms. Rand: "[Dagny] knew that fear was useless, that he would do what he wished, that the decision was his, that he left nothing possible to her except the thing she wanted most - to submit."

If you're one of the irrational people who think this kind of sexual experience is wrong, well, that's only because you think sex is evil. And you probably desire monogamy! Ha, you fools!

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Dealing with it, sort of.

I've been meaning to write about my current obsession with The Last Five Years, which is probably my favorite musical. It's not very popular; it was an off-Broadway show that came out in 2002, and I happened to catch a production at DePaul in February. The play has only two characters, Cathy and Jamie, and it chronicles the five years of their relationship, from their first date to their marriage and eventual break up. The songs are presented as soliloquys except for one duet in the middle, and the interesting thing about the play is that Cathy tells the story from the end of the relationship to the beginning, while Jamie tells it chronologically.

The play brings out a lot of emotions in me, especially since I saw it with my ex during an awkward, fading time in our relationship. I can't help but see a lot of similarities in our relationship and the characters'. Cathy is a struggling actress in New York, desperately trying to make a break for herself and continuing to be defeated, while Jamie is a successful young novelist, and the varying degrees of their success is an eventual issue that contributes to the break up of their marriage. I relate to the Cathy character quite a bit, as I've also struggled with this constant feeling of mediocrity in the last few months. I'm here, living in a big city, which is something I always wanted for myself, yet at the same time I'm constantly hitting these obstacles in my professional life and finding myself more and more unhappy with how my life is going. Seeing someone you care for so much having the exact opposite experience than you can be quite difficult and frustrating, especially since you cannot for the life of you figure out how someone can be so lucky while you, on the other hand, can't get a chance to prove any degree of success and self-worth.

A few weeks ago I discovered that someone had filmed the entire original off-Broadway production and posted the videos on YouTube. Sometimes I sit at work and, during the usual slow periods, I'll watch some of them. There are three songs in particular in the second half of the play that I especially love and relate to. The first is "Climbing Uphill," which features Cathy's character auditioning for several shows only to be rejected over and over again. During her audition, she has several internal monologues where she questions why she is even bothering to keep up with the process, only to have to admit defeat after each one. I feel the same way when I keep sending out resumes and go to interviews for jobs I don't particularly want, only to continue to not get a chance to prove that I am fairly intelligent and competent. There's a line she sings that particularly affects me: "I am a good person. I'm an attractive person. I am a talented person. Grant me grace."

The next song, "If I Didn't Believe In You," is sung by Jamie, directed to Cathy. It's one of the first scenes in his version of the story that shows a negative progression in the marriage. It directly addresses the two characters' levels of success and how it puts a strain on their relationship. He knows Cathy is better than her career makes it look to be, but he can't help but feel angry that she wants to bring him down to match her depression while he's pleased that he's as successful as he is. He sings, "No one can give you courage, no one can thicken your skin. I will not fail so that you can be comfortable. I will not lose because you can't win."

The third song, sung by Cathy, is "I Can Do Better Than That." It's my favorite from the show. It shows Cathy in the beginning of the relationship, driving with Jamie to her home town. She compares her life living in New York and following her dreams to what she could have been doing had she taken the easy route and gotten married and lived in some suburb somewhere. It makes me think of where I might be had I gone back home, or just stayed in Virginia working at some job that was easier to get, rather than taking the huge risk of moving to a brand new, huge city six hundred miles from home.

I've been looking back on the last few months today after speaking to the ex for the first time since I demanded to be left alone almost three months ago. I screamed over the phone at four in the morning, for the first time getting very upset about how things turned out, despite hearing about how I'm a "genuine person" and receiving sincere apologies for the hurt that I've been dealing with since the break up. I wouldn't say that things are resolved at all; while I appreciate the sentiments, I can't forgive someone who treated me so poorly, even if those actions are finally being recognized. It's much easier to apologize to someone you hurt rather than accepting those apologies, since I was the only one in the situation whose feelings were hurt. I've spent the entire day in a daze, realizing that I'm not actually over the relationship and still have these conflicted feelings I have to sort out. I really just wish that I could just ignore them and move on: move on to someone else, find a better job, and finally start to feel like I've reached some semblance of success.

I'm really exhausted and wish I didn't have to keep waiting for something to happen. I've tried very, very hard to stop relying on others and make things happen for myself, but I feel like I keep failing and fall back into this rut that I can't break myself out of. I keep setting deadlines for myself and get frustrated when I can't reach them, and I'm tired of making mental to-do lists and not being able to cross out the items. I'm tired of having to constantly accept this idea of a quarter-life crisis and wish I could just be grown up already.

I really don't want to feel this way five years from now.

Islands in the Stream.

Christina came into my room this afternoon and said, "Tyler, have you ever once thought that maybe there would be an object of some kind that perfectly symbolized our friendship?"

I just kind of stared at her and replied, "Um, no?"

"Well, neither did I... until I found this:"

Saturday, June 02, 2007

Lethal injections of G&T.

As I said before, I had this charming little informal interview for an admissions counselor position in my office, which was my one shot at some sort of career path at my current place of employment. I was sure it went well, and expected to be selected for the formal interview process, especially since I already work there and have many, many great references on my side. When I didn't hear back about the interview by Thursday, I emailed my co-worker - yes, she's technically my co-worker, even though she's one of those sweet gals on the other side of the office who hadn't spoken to me in a year and a half until I came into her office to grovel for a job - to see what the status was. When I got home yesterday, I received a form email regretting to inform me that I had not been selected for the position.

Now, I had already decided that if this happened I'd take it as a sign from Whoever that I am absolutely worthless because I can't even get a promotion in my own office. So I did what I usually do in these times of distress: I called my parents. After a brief chit-chat about the weather (an exchange that I had had earlier in the day with my father, who will ask me, "How are things in Chicago?" even if I call him every five minutes), I broke the news. My dad became quiet and apologized, and I could hear my mom in the background asking questions because she knew what was wrong. After all, it was Friday afternoon, which is the best time to break someone's hopes and dreams of becoming an admissions counselor. (Not only did she inform me that I am too mediocre for such a mediocrity-laden job, the woman decided it was best to ruin my weekend, as well.) My mom tried to comfort me in our family's typical fashion, which is to figure out what is wrong with ME, as opposed to the idea that there really were other qualified applicants. "Well, you know, I sent you that article about how employers will Google the people they interview and look for their blogs," she said. I snapped and said that I KNOW who is reading my blog, and no one has Googled my name for months. I really wanted to say that I doubted the woman was concerned about her large labia and that's how she stumbled on my blog. Or perhaps she was looking for pictures of "pug eating donut." I suppose it's possible.

After my phone-breakdown, where I cried and said "fuck" a few times, which I suppose was taken without any scolding on my parents' part because, hey, I'm fucking miserable right now!, I decided that my next plan of action was to smoke a lot of cigarettes and get ridiculously, ridiculously drunk, natch. I ate a few spoonfuls of cookie dough and ate some lasagna to ensure no pass-outs, and I left with fifty dollars burning a hole in my wallet. Sometimes I like to punish myself by becoming dangerously close to overdrawing my account AND destroying my body at the same time. I'm either a masochist, or just a self-loathing English major. I took "Film Adaptations" instead of accounting. I get what I deserve.

To make a long story short, if only because recounting how much gin I took in before deciding that switching to beer was safer, cheaper, and just made sense would be depressing to write (and read, I'm sure), I succeeded in my plan to get all drunky-pants. So drunky-pants, in fact, that when I realized that I was having trouble standing up, I searched in vain for an open seat and resorted to sitting on a metal trashcan. And I'm sure it was filled with trash, although I checked the seat of my pants this morning and it appears it's all clean! And my ass isn't too sore from trying to balance myself on a fucking metal trashcan.

The rest of the night is rather hazy, although I think the friend I was with had enough sense to realize that if I was willing to sit in filth, it was probably time to call me a cab. And when I got back to my neighborhood, I experienced a new level of public puking, an activity in which I had not yet partaken. And I passed out in my clothes with my head next to my laptop and all of my lights left on.

Much to my surprise, I do not feel so much better about life.

Friday, June 01, 2007

Good news, fatties!

Yesterday I went to the Market Place, which is still the worst grocery store known to man because I spent $24.52 on the following: a Digiorno pizza, pretzel Goldfish, Nestle Tollhouse cookie dough, a box of twelve brown sugar and cinnamon Pop Tarts, and a small Stouffer's lasagna. Sigh. I miss the Food Lion. I'm an MVP!

Anyway, when I was putting away my goods, I noticed a bright announcement on my roll of cookie dough: "0g trans fat!" I, for one, am very excited, since I won't feel so guilty about substituting an entire meal with half a log of raw cookie dough. Thanks, Nestle!

UPDATE! My bag of Goldfish (which I'm eating for breakfast, btw) also boasts zero grams of trans fat, which is wonderful, even though a serving of goldfish makes up eighteen percent of my daily sodium intake.