To absent friends

There´s this guy from back in College, he calls me up twice a year at work just to keep in touch. People called him Potato because he was kind of chubby, but I always thought of him as the Fat kid with the scar, for he had a nasty scar running down from behind his left ear to the base of his neck.
Fat kid with the scar must´ve had some pretty big issues with his own self-esteem because he was always trying so hard to please everyone back in the day and to this day, three years later, he still asks me how great the barbecue at his parents´ really was, if I´m sure everyone had a good time, if I remember telling him once I was so lucky that day because I got to ride the bus home with Isabella and she was really cute- and I say, Yeah it was pretty cool man don´t worry, and Yeah sure we should get everyone together again yeah another barbecue is a terrific idea count me in.
Before putting down the receiver we always make sure to have that beer on a strictly conceptual level, the kind that makes me go like, Yeah sure man call you up one of these days and we´ll go out for a beer and stuff.

I don´t call people back anymore, not very often, not for beer and stuff.
I mean, what for, you know.

It´s kind of funny because you are probably gonna jump at that same old assumption that says Wow man, you broke up with your girlfriend and hit the gutters, that was two, three years ago so come on- I dunno.
I just had this sudden realization; I think it was a little later and nothing to do with my ex-girlfriend; it was maybe a few months after that, the two of us (you and I) got together for a pizza before you left for good and I should have kissed you before you entered that taxi. And for no special reason whatsoever other than Hey, what the hell. What are friends for, et. al.
Did you attend those classes I shared with the Fat kid with the scar, by the way? I still got that Pogues CD you gave me; it still has your handwriting etched in pencil on it, only I had your name erased because I was afraid my girlfriend would get jealous (I can hear you now, “you were such a wuss,” etc.)

Yeah I think I was.


A hole in the world

Took some photographs for a new passport today.
It was kind of funny because it was the first good look at my own face I´d had in a while; unshaven in a disheveled shirt with some nasty dark circles beneath my eyes. I thought I looked like crap for a split-second, then stopped caring altogether and went off to lunch with the archetype of my own shadow.

Hey zero

What do you mean Less Than Zero (book) was written when the author (Bret Easton Ellis) was only 19 years old?!

I´m 26 and this crappy, half-assed, utterly pointless backwater blog is pretty much the best I can do (well, about 50% of what I can do anyway, as usual).
That said, though, I have neither the inclination or aspiration to become a writer. Ahh, or a novelist. But still c´mon...

If I were to push say, 90% just once in my life- not necessarily in writing but in anything at all- would I make (at least even near) the cut?
The roadmap to my life is written in apathy and ends at a roadblock. In a writer´s block. Spelled out on a blog.

Yeah, that´s it.
Answer to my 26-year old riddle: I´m not lost, I´m apathetic.
Sic transit gloria mundi. Sick transit gloria mundi.

Terrific book, though.



We strive to uphold traditions and champion pretty much every worthwhile, time-tested cause. Hence, here´s another Freudian Remembrance Day post at the blog. And now we´re talking dogs.
Or rather, about a boy (aged 8) & his dog (aged like, 4 months old), and his mom (aged “mom”):

Mom: “Have you decided on what name to call the dog?”
Me: “Gonna call him Killer!”
Mom: “No, you are not.”
Me: “Why not?”
Mom: “Killer isn´t a good name for a dog.”
Me: “But it´s so cool!”
Mom: “It´s not. Besides, you got to pick the name for our first dog already.”
Me: “So?”
Mom: “So you called him after a McDonald´s sandwich.”
Me: “Yeah! That was pretty cool too!”
Mom: “I think I should pick the name for this dog.”
Me: “No, mom. C´mon!”
Mom: “Okay. Here´s what I am going to do. I´ll give you a couple of choices and you decide.”
Me: “Aww…”
Mom: “So?”
Me: …
Mom: “Don´t do that. Stop mumbling. And look up. Look at me when you talk.”
Me: “…Okay.”
Mom: “Good. Then choose: Tom. Or Stuka.”
Me: “I´m not calling the dog Tom!”
Mom: “It´s a good name for a dog.”
Me: “It´s a good name for a cat!”
Mom: “Well, if you don´t like it you can call him Stuka instead!”
Me: “Not calling the dog after a dive bomber from Nazi Germany!”
Mom: “It doesn´t have to be an airplane, it´s just a name. I´ve always wanted to have a dog named Stuka… ever since I was a little girl.”
Me: “...It sounds like a girl´s name. The dog´s male!”
Mom: “You don´t like Stuka?”
Me: “No way!”
Mom: “Well then. Go tell [dad´s name] about you new dog´s name…”

When my grandfather- father to my mother- passed away four years later I discovered this endless stack of Luftwaffe- themed books hidden in the closet behind his shirts.
True story.

[Will somebody please whistle that eerie X-Files song on this one?]

Thus Spake Zarathustra

That ingrown toenail-gone-bad thing was probably life´s way of keeping me from getting a tattoo.
On the bright(er?) side, here´s me catching up with my reading, which is always a pleasure.

I´ll get back to the tattoo, though.



It´s Saturday evening, 08hs00 in the year of our Lord 2006 and my eyes are hopelessly wandering among dozens of diagrams done very half-assedly by my Chilean workmates for there´s this thing coming up Monday afternoon at work and I gotta be ready. Herr Mozart and his Magic Flute spin in the CD Player. Tried Midnight Oil and Sinatra before that, only Mozart made the cut.
There´s one inescapable truth to be told about the old PC at my parents´; in a crazy kind of way it´s not unlike meeting an ex-girlfriend from back when you were much younger; I did my first web-site on that computer. I wrote my first pieces there too, and most of them are still stored on its backup drive, a constellation of faded .doc stars that never got to make the cut themselves, just like Frank Sinatra tonight.
So to hell with work for a bit. Let´s take a quick tour around Memory Lane, wow, there´s some rather curious stuff in here. There is this thing coming up Monday afternoon at work. There are other things coming up in other Monday afternoons.
So do check this out. Heavily edited, adapted & translated for your own good, but here´s nineteen ninety-seven all over again. I was seventeen years old.
It was a Monday afternoon as well.

23.Jun.1997 – Monday.
(…)And at Lit class it was all joy; the teacher asked us who´d read some awful book and no one had (why would anyone? All books they want us to read are lousy books!) but since there´s bound to be a good Samaritan in every group I raised my hand I said, for no good reason whatsoever, heck yeah, I´d read that book, so what!!
So the teacher got so happy and began firing round after round of questions about the damn book and there laid I basically floored, gee I gotta come up with something, I´m a sitting duck here. Of course that saying- better yet- establishing that the common aspect among the book´s characters was that each one of them had two hands never really helped me much. Especially because that, and I kid you not, it turned out that one of the major characters from the book had lost a hand somehow and he wasn´t even Aquaman!!
So the teacher, the witch, rained hell over me and this buddy of mine K--- whom was all good with drawing- no, scratch that, his dad was, I guess he only followed suit- he did this drawing of me dressed up like Batman and wrote something like, “Desperately looking for attention” or something and passed along to the rest of the class & to the teacher herself, the witch, and everybody laughed.

Do you remember that day in High School, K---? Our common friend, the one with no neck whom we´d say had Klinefelter waged a senseless bet against our Physics teacher about the contents of next week´s test, and we wrote the parody of a popular song making fun of this other friend of ours, whom we´d say was either the gayest person to walk on Earth, or Quasimodo from Disney´s the Hunchback of Notre-Dame (but never both at the same time. Go figure.)
It´s Saturday night and nine years later, and I´m sitting alone at my parents´ and laughing out loud- I´m actually laughing so much I´m almost crying- because I keep remembering all those funny, crazy bits from back when life was just like a sitcom. Everything was so easy back then, wasn´t it?
My web-site was hosted at, http://www.geocities.com/SiliconValley/9928, “Under Development” since the year before. The URL does not exist anymore, so don´t bother trying. Lots of things don´t exist anymore.

So is the future bleak? Probably. Is life harder? Yes, but well, for pretty much everyone. Did those days go by so quick & stuff? Oh yes. With the speed of a bad cliché zooming by your ears. But hey, am I glad to be here or what?
Here´s something. I´m gonna tell you all a secret now, okay? I was never really into High School, I was never really into being a kid and all that. Being 17 had a lot to do, in hindsight, with wishing I were 26.
Waking up five-ish in the morning, having my PC on before seven at the office and shutting it down after eight at night, maybe taking the full lunch break if I´m lucky… My roommate calls me a Yuppie who came in late. Of course I tell him I´m not a Yuppie, he´s the Hippie.
There´s no finer thing in life than making your own decisions, calling your own shots, knowing what is best for you and everybody around just because you think it´s best… no, scratch that too. Because you have spent some ungodly amount of time figuring things out and in doing so you probably learned a thing or two. Life itself. Like taking the evening off to see some generic Tom Cruise movie just to get your mind off things for a couple of hours & stopping by the toy store to buy a cheap Batmobile toy with the 10 bucks left in your wallet after the chocolate milk-shake. Not a care in the world, nobody waiting for you at home. The pact sealed almost in blood with your cell phone: you won´t call Bhutan and Bhutan won´t call you back.

Of course I expect to be dead by the time I´m 35.


No uglier person than Willem DaFoe

Went to see that Inside Man movie last night and daaamn that Willem DaFoe is one ugly SOB! Thing is, guy sure knows his acting, and I found it particularly interesting that Captain Darius, his character, is more of a blue-collar kind of guy and we´re mostly used to seeing Pugsley there as more of a highbrow executive type or something.
File it under, born to play the Green Goblin.

Off to a holiday tomorrow, then back on Monday.

That old Planetary routine

I was just glancing over a tabletop world map spread over a friend´s desk and turns out Russia´s got an island called Bolshevik Island.
Isn´t it trying a little too hard? You don´t see a "Cowboy Island" in the United States or a "Samurai Island" in Japan.
Australia, on the other hand, does have a Kangaroo Island just south of Adelaide.

"It´s a strange world," et. al.
(Back this afternoon for more.)



Local track record around here for stupidity outranks the span of infinity itself- think of the kid who stopped writing because he had hurt his foot.
Chalk it up to idiosyncratic wit or lack of it, then Icarus fell not with proud wings of wax (melted) but with feet of clay. Superboy here stands corrected and admits to having a foot of clay or three after all, who would´ve thought.
Perfection is so hard to come by these days and I- Ubermensch-to-be as I am- am no exception to the rule.

Once upon a time- and what a time it was- I was so high on Jack Kerouac & stuff and I thought Hey I can do this and started writing all kinds of things through the nights and… Do you remember I once told you about a week just before I went back home for the Holidays, that last week before Christmas still a few months before the first time we kissed on a fancy restaurant over chocolate milk shakes and jokes cracked at random about Aquaman on Cartoon Network on TV right then & there? I was trying so hard to be funny and to make you laugh (terrific smile, by the way) and you were just standing there the queen of instant Internet messaging. It was your birthday. I told you a secret, I told you about that very week a few months back in which I had spent all my money on The Catcher in the Rye and had to survive strictly on bread and water until Friday came along- you had just asked about my favorite book, or that´s the way I remember it now- whamm!, from Salinger to Kerouac to more Salinger & on to sorrow in a heartbeat. My heart beat faster when we kissed, re-issued beat boys of the 1950s sitting on pocket books in plastic handbags under our chairs with the odd Uncanny X-Men piece or two.
(It was raining that evening and it was vol. II of the black & white Essential X-Men compendium. Such is the stuff of memory.)

In a way College was like coming home from Vietnam sans much of the napalm burns. You read about ´em vets saying that they half-wish to be back in Vietnam just to wish to be back home again-- It was a foul time of lost people and losing people at the same time. In a crazy kind of way- and this is me speaking through a purely masochistic medium- I wish I were in College again. One wonders what the hell´s happened to the promise of a pristine 21st century.

But I digress.
Schroedinger´s cat is out of the bag again & we´re back.
Could be worse.

“At least, she thinks, she does not read mysteries or romance.”
[from The Hours, by Michael Cunningham, 1998]

Back tomorrow for more.