Thursday, November 30, 2006

I Think

It's four days later and I'm still rocking back and forth. It seems like forever. I'm starting to feel like Keith Richards...

The sad part is when I fully get over my sea legs I'm going to miss them. I think I have Stockholm Syndrome.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Monday, November 27, 2006

I'm So Unbalanced

I'm back from Ali's Bbirthday cruise. It was fun. I'm feeling so sick from not having my land legs back. It's like I'm really drunk.

Kind of like Lindsay Lohan. On a Tuesday morning.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

I Act 16!!!!


[x] I know how to make a pot of coffee
[x] I do my own laundry
[ ] I can cook for myself
[x] I actually enjoy intellectual conversations
[x] I think politics are exciting
[ ] My parents and grandparents have better things to say than my friends

Total: 4

[x] I show up for school and or work every day unless I'm sick
[ ] I always carry a pen in my pocket/purse.
[ ] I've never gotten a detention
[ ] I've watched talk shows to point out the credibility of it all
[x] I know what credibility means without looking it up
[x]drink coffeee/cappucino atleast once a week

Total: 3

[x] I know how to run the dish washer and or do the dishes.
[x] I can count to 10 in Spanish.
[x] When I say I'm going to do something I do it.
[ ] I can mow the lawn.
[ ] I can make adults laugh without being stupid.
[ ] I remember to water my plants.
[x] I study when I have to.
[x] I pay attention at school/work
[ ] I remember to feed my pets

Total: 4

[x] I can spell experience without looking it up
[x] I clean up my own mess.
[ ] The first thing I do when I wake up is get Diet Coke.
[ ] I can go to the store with out getting something I don't need.
[x] I understand jokes the first time they are said.
[ ] I can type fast.

Total: 3

[ ] I have realized that the weather forecast changes every hour.
[ ] I can look at someone hot without thinking of sex.
[ ] I've realized that no one will take you seriously unless you are over the age of 25 and have a job.
[x] I can read a book and actually finish it.
[ ] People have said i act/look older than i am.

Total: 1

Now add up all of the x's you have and put "I act __ years old" in the subject line

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

How Sad

Director Robert Altman dead at 81
By DAVID GERMAINAP MOVIE WRITER


Director, producer and writer Robert Altman poses with the honorary Oscar he received from the Board of Governors of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences during the 78th Academy Awards telecast on, March 5, 2006, in Los Angeles. Altman, the caustic and irreverent satirist behind "M-A-S-H," "Nashville" and "The Player" who made a career out of bucking Hollywood management and story conventions, died at a Los Angeles Hospital, his Sandcastle 5 Productions Company said Tuesday, Nov. 21, 2006. He was 81. (AP Photo/Kevork Djansezian)

LOS ANGELES -- Robert Altman, the caustic and irreverent satirist behind "M-A-S-H," "Nashville" and "The Player" who made a career out of bucking Hollywood, has died at 81. The director died Monday night at a Los Angeles Hospital, Joshua Astrachan, a producer at Altman's Sandcastle 5 Productions in New York City, told The Associated Press.
The cause of death wasn't disclosed. A news release was expected later in the day, Astrachan said.

A five-time Academy Award nominee for best director, most recently for 2001's "Gosford Park," he finally won a lifetime achievement Oscar in 2006.
"No other filmmaker has gotten a better shake than I have," Altman said while accepting the award. "I'm very fortunate in my career. I've never had to direct a film I didn't choose or develop. My love for filmmaking has given me an entree to the world and to the human condition."

Garrison Keillor, who starred in Altman's last movie - this year's "A Prairie Home Companion" - said Tuesday that Altman's love of film clearly came through on the set.
"Mr. Altman loved making movies. He loved the chaos of shooting and the sociability of the crew and actors - he adored actors - and he loved the editing room and he especially loved sitting in a screening room and watching the thing over and over with other people," Keillor said in a statement to The Associated Press. "He didn't care for the money end of things, he didn't mind doing publicity, but when he was working he was in heaven."

Elliot Gould, who starred in "M-A-S-H," said Altman's legacy would "nuture and inspire filmmakers and artists for generations to come.""He was the last great American director in the tradition of John Ford," Gould said. "He was my friend and I'll always be grateful to him for the experience and opportunities he gave me."

Altman had one of the most distinctive styles among modern filmmakers. He often employed huge ensemble casts, encouraged improvisation and overlapping dialogue and filmed scenes in long tracking shots that would flit from character to character.

Perpetually in and out of favor with audiences and critics, Altman worked ceaselessly since his anti-war black comedy "M-A-S-H" established his reputation in 1970, but he would go for years at a time directing obscure movies before roaring back with a hit.

After a string of commercial duds including "The Gingerbread Man" in 1998, "Cookie's Fortune" in 1999 and "Dr. T & the Women" in 2000, Altman took his all-American cynicism to Britain for 2001's "Gosford Park."

A combination murder-mystery and class-war satire set among snobbish socialites and their servants on an English estate in the 1930s, "Gosford Park" was Altman's biggest box-office success since "M-A-S-H."

Besides best-director, "Gosford Park" earned six other Oscar nominations, including best picture and best supporting actress for both Helen Mirren and Maggie Smith. It won the original-screenplay Oscar, and Altman took the best-director prize at the Golden Globes for "Gosford Park."

Altman's other best-director Oscar nominations came for "M-A-S-H," the country music saga "Nashville" from 1975, the movie-business satire "The Player" from 1992 and the ensemble character study "Short Cuts" from 1993. He also earned a best-picture nomination as producer of "Nashville."

No director ever got more best-director nominations without winning a regular Oscar, though four other men - Alfred Hitchcock, Martin Scorsese, Clarence Brown and King Vidor - tied with Altman at five.

In May, Altman brought out "A Prairie Home Companion," with Keillor starring as the announcer of a folksy musical show - with the same name as Keillor's own long-running show - about to be shut down by new owners. Among those in the cast were Meryl Streep, Lily Tomlin, Kevin Kline, Woody Harrelson and Tommy Lee Jones. "This film is about death," Altman said at a May 3 news conference in St. Paul, Minn., also attended by Keillor and many of the movie's stars.

He often took on Hollywood genres with a revisionist's eye, de-romanticizing the Western hero in 1971's "McCabe and Mrs. Miller" and 1976's "Buffalo Bill and the Indians, or Sitting Bull's History Lesson," the film-noir gumshoe in 1973's "The Long Goodbye" and outlaw gangsters in "Thieves Like Us."

"M-A-S-H" was Altman's first big success after years of directing television, commercials, industrial films and generally unremarkable feature films. The film starring Donald Sutherland and Gould was set during the Korean War but was Altman's thinly veiled attack on U.S. involvement in Vietnam.

"That was my intention entirely. If you look at that film, there's no mention of what war it is," Altman said in an Associated Press interview in 2001, adding that the studio made him put a disclaimer at the beginning to identify the setting as Korea.

"Our mandate was bad taste. If anybody had a joke in the worst taste, it had a better chance of getting into the film, because nothing was in worse taste than that war itself," Altman said.
The film spawned the long-running TV sitcom starring Alan Alda, a show Altman would refer to with distaste as "that series." Unlike the social message of the film, the series was prompted by greed, Altman said.

"They made millions and millions of dollars by bringing an Asian war into Americans' homes every Sunday night," Altman said in 2001. "I thought that was the worst taste."

Altman never minced words about reproaching Hollywood. After the Sept. 11 attacks, he said Hollywood served as a source of inspiration for the terrorists by making violent action movies that amounted to training films for such attacks. "Nobody would have thought to commit an atrocity like that unless they'd seen it in a movie," Altman said.

Altman was written off repeatedly by the Hollywood establishment, and his reputation for arrogance and hard drinking - a habit he eventually gave up - hindered his efforts to raise money for his idiosyncratic films.

While critical of studio executives, Altman held actors in the highest esteem. He joked that on "Gosford Park," he was there mainly to turn the lights on and off for the performers.
The respect was mutual. Top-name actors would clamor for even bit parts in his films. Altman generally worked on shoestring budgets, yet he continually landed marquee performers who signed on for a fraction of their normal salaries.

After the mid-1970s, the quality of Altman's films became increasingly erratic. His 1980 musical "Popeye," with Robin Williams, was trashed by critics, and Altman took some time off from film.
He directed the Broadway production of "Come Back to the Five and Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean," following it with a movie adaptation in 1982. Altman went back and forth from TV to theatrical films over the next decade, but even when his films earned critical praise, such as 1990's "Vincent & Theo," they remained largely unseen.

"The Player" and "Short Cuts" re-established Altman's reputation and commercial viability. But other 1990s films - including his fashion-industry farce "Ready to Wear" and "Kansas City," his reverie on the 1930s jazz and gangster scene of his hometown - fell flat.

Born Feb. 20, 1925, Altman hung out in his teen years at the jazz clubs of Kansas City, Mo., where his father was an insurance salesman. Altman was a bomber pilot in World War II and studied engineering at the University of Missouri in Columbia before taking a job making industrial films in Kansas City. He moved into feature films with "The Delinquents" in 1957, then worked largely in television through the mid-1960s, directing episodes of such series as "Bonanza" and "Alfred Hitchcock Presents."

Altman and his wife, Kathryn, had two sons, Robert and Matthew, and he had a daughter, Christine, and two other sons, Michael and Stephen, from two previous marriages. When he received his honorary Oscar in 2006, Altman revealed he had a heart transplant a decade earlier.

"I didn't make a big secret out of it, but I thought nobody would hire me again," he said after the ceremony. "You know, there's such a stigma about heart transplants, and there's a lot of us out there."
---
Associated Press writers Jeff Baenen in St. Paul, Minn., and Jeff Wilson in Los Angeles contributed to this report.
Get Into It

So I’m finally getting in the process of being excited for the cruise. The passport is here, the sea pass printed and transportation handle. (Thanks Rocky) So now all is left is to think about outfits and activities. We’re all been shopping and grooming and get ready for a wild time. And while there is slight drama it should be fun.

I think I have decided on my theme for the trip—something I do a lot when I go out of town. I’m thinking of making my look kind of a ‘Now, Voyager’ meets ‘Love Story’; preppy with elements of tragic overtures. Like sunglasses and black and lots of collared shirts and high end shoes.

(If you don’t know, ‘Now Voyager’ is a Bette Davis film all about her mother makes her crazy, she goes to a sanitarium where she becomes sane, sosphiscated and sexy, ends on an exotic cruise to South America as suggested by her doctors and falls in love. There’s more to the story than that but why ruin it? And ‘Love Story’ is college grads dealing with cancer in Cambridge. Very white, clean and preppy.)

I plan on being in layers—no scarves though as that would make it wicked gay—with sweaters and hats and no funny t-shirts but sad t-shirts. I plan on bringing a copy of ‘War and Peace’ with me or maybe so Kafka. I haven’t thought that far ahead. But there will be lost of forlorn looks for the pictures sure to come from the trip.

It’s going to effing rock!

Monday, November 20, 2006

Quote of the Year

As Lola, Kelly and I finished up shopping, we're in the process of getting rung up at Old Navy when the stupidyingly hotte salesclerk said the following to me....

"Is it hard or soft?"

This was so unexpected that it stopped the girls conversation to the point that Lola made a face and I felt myself go fully dumb. Of course I was wearing my 'I have candy' t-shirt but still...

I did manage to reply that it depended on the audience. And my mood.

But seriously people. Seriously.

Friday, November 17, 2006

Friday Fun

I'm currently having

1) A Food Freak Out. (Left over from eating disorder days.)

2) A Financial Freak Out. (This month has been expensive and will continue to be.)

3) A Fat Freak Out. (I thought I was okay but a certain picture almost made me cry.)

4) A Fashion Freak Out. (Formal wear makes me cry but the cruise calls for it.)

Fabulous!!!!

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Music Bitch

It’s been awhile since I posted one of these lists. I have discovered my new hobby is to track down various songs while watching bad b-roll at the job. So many new songs—and several people who make multiple appearances.

Maps- The Yeah Yeah Yeahs. I had this on the computer before the bad crash from last year. I didn’t realize it was missing till a few days ago.

Goodies- Ciara. Because I should have already owned this song. Serious.

Everybody Knows- Leonard Cohen. I actually prefer the Concrete Blonde cover from ‘Pump Up the Volume’ but figure its best to go old school on this classic.

Joey- Concrete Blonde. The song is depressing but haunting in its own way. And the video sticks with me to this day.

Delta Dawn- Tanya Tucker. This is totally from working on ‘Tuckerville’ and having it played everyday for almost 7 months.

Let Me Talk to You/My Love- Justin Timberlake w/ T.I. This is the first of three appearances and the runner up to gayest music on the list. But this song makes me smile and dance which is quite good depending on who you ask.

FutureSexLoveSound- Justin Timberlake. I just find this song very captivating. I just a fan of people who experiment with sounds.

Sexy Back- Justin Timberlake. Just because the video makes me hot.

Wind It Up- Gwen Stefani. I know this song makes some people crazy and if you told me a dance hit based off ‘Sound of Music’ would make me ‘get into it’ like this has… I would have called your crazy but I think this single proves that crazy is Gwen’s job.

The Actor- Robbie Williams. This song just makes me laugh my ass off. All the funny actor quotes are so true even if the lyrics don’t make sense.

Fergilous- Fergie. It’s totally a rip off of ‘Super Sonic’ and I used to worship that song. For some reason the line 'I be up in the gym just working on my fitness’ cracks me like no other lyric as of late. The gayest song on the list.

London Bridge- Fergie. I used to hate this song. But hearing it everyday in my office has made me get more into. Even if I don’t respect it.

You and Me- Rie Sinclair. Yeah it’s country light and the love theme of Jason and Sam from ‘General Hospital’. That being said—I really like the lyrics—even if I hate Jason and Sam on ‘GH’.

Le Disko- Shiny Toy Guns. Just so different and cool. Yeah—this one was suggested by Perez Hilton but it’s very worthy.

Irreplaceable– Beyonce. I saw the TRL performance and just really got into the sound. I always love a ballad that’s really a ‘get out of my life, I’m over you’ song.

Beware of the Dog- Jamelia. This is that ‘SOS’ song’s British cousin and lift the hook from ‘Personal Jesus’ so it’s really not that clever. But I like it. Judge me.

Love Today- Mika. You don’t know this song most likely. But you will after this holiday season since it’s in a huge ad campaign. And it is very worthy of the honor.

Grace Kelly- Mika. This song grabbed me the first time I heard it via myspace. I love his voice, his lyrics, his samples and it stayed with me for days after one listen. It’s that good.

Blue Bayou- Linda Ronstadt. I don’t know why I have such a sentimental attachment to this song. I suspect someone in my family used to listen to it a lot.

When Will I Be Loved- Linda Ronstadt. I have always loved this song. And I always forget that it’s Miss Linda. I am so going to karaoke this one.

Bossy- Kelis. It’s nasty, rude and mean but I have been into since I first heard my current monsters play it on one of our show’s tapes. Kelis grows in love every single I get my hands on.

I Don’t Feel Like Dancing- Scissors Sisters. I love irony in music—not Alanis style-so this song caught me with the upbeat sound and downbeat lyrics.

Do You Realize?- The Flaming Lips. I have always loved this song and lost it in the Great Crash of 2005. Now it’s back and just in time.

Spider Web- No Doubt. This was my voice mail greeting in college and still gets me jumping today. I just love the ska sound.

I’m Just a Girl- No Doubt. Another classic lost and found. I really needed a copy of this on the soundtrack for Samuel’s birthday party.

Little Less Conversation- Elvis Presley. Because he’s the king and it makes me feel like one too.

Why Do You Love Me- Garbage. This song is just so unlike the band but so great. Just a list of why someone isn’t lovable and wonders how you can love them with all the faults. Perfect.

Are U that Somebody- The Gossip. It’s a cover of the Alliyah song that works. I love when a cover is all about a new sound and new interoperation of the lyrics. Soulfully yet rocking too.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Quote of the Week

This goes to Kaylie's very topical response to modern dating

"I thought the way to a man's heart was through his stomach, not through another girl..."

Thanks for keeping it old school.
Huh

It's been a year today. If you had told me that the boy and I would have lasted this long after our first date I just would have said....

Huh...

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Notice

You break my friend's heart--I break your face.

General notice for someone in particular.
Shouldn’t Open My Mouth

As of late some freaky things have been happening. Innocent (okay maybe not that innocent) statements or scenarios I have suggested have randomly become true. Like I have some weird hook up with universe or something.

1) Cutting the hand. I was talking with one of the girls on-line about trying to sneak out of work early and joked about telling my boss my roommate sliced open her hand and needed me to meet her at the emergency room.

Later that Day—Kirby called me to ask if she should take someone to emergency room or the doctor when they have cut their hand open. When I asked why she told me that Amy had cut her hand open that afternoon and she wasn’t sure what to do.

2) Broken Down Car. I was trying to figure out how to trick Samuel to meet up with Kaylie for a birthday dinner. I wanted it to be a surprise and was debating what story would work. I came up with the idea that Kirby would be at the Galleria and stranded due to her car being broken down.

20 Minutes Later. I was calling Kirby to see if she wanted to join us for the birthday dinner but she couldn’t because she was stranded. Her car was having problems and was in the shop.

3) Split Couple. I was reading Vaughn’s journal where he was talking about how no one was calling or writing. I asked Samuel if his ex (Vaughn) had broken up with his boyfriend and Samuel said no. I mentioned Vaughn should come visit soon.

Two Days Later. Vaughn had a fast and bad break up with said boyfriend and was trying to change a plane ticket meant for visiting the boyfriend to come visit us.

4) Lay Offs. I was talking with Kirby on phone about lay offs and how hard it is to get used to having no money and losing jobs like that. That having no money could be a real issue with certain relationships and that I should learn to handle that better.

Five Minutes Later. I hang up with Kirby and the phone rings. Samuel. First words out of his mouth—‘I got laid off today’.


I think I’m right to find this shite creepy…. I mean—what are the chances? I should probably just take a vow of silence. Or stop talking to Kirby.
Competitive Party Machines

I always forget that my friends are competitive. I mean—I know we’re mostly attention whores but that has never really bothered me because it’s funny more than anything else. But the competition part doesn’t usually show itself that often.

It all started with Diana’s birthday on Friday. She decided that she wanted to do something fun and sporty and very Mid-West so she went and rented out a rink for broom ball. If you don’t know what this is—it’s a large ball (a bit bigger than a baseball but smaller than a dodge ball), broom shaped sticks and street feet on ice. (Like hockey without skates. Or pads which should really be a part of this game.)

There ended up being a large group of to play and after some slow warm up—like mastering how to walk on ice—we spilt into teams to play. Now you would think that it would be a silly and goofy game with the people involved—Benji, Joy, Kaylie, Penn, Lizzie, Johnny, Skylar, Smythee, Lola , Sophie and even Rocky but somehow Diana, Dax, Trista (Diana’s roommate) Ava and even Guy somehow brought out the fighting streak in all of us.

It became so intense at points that people were dropped via hip checks, stick trick and even slamming into each other—on purpose—which lead to some real awkward moments. I hit Skylar in the face with my stick by accident—though he was totally trying to use his stick to sweep my feet out from under me—but I hit him so hard we actually thought that I might have loosened his teeth. The is only funny because of our ‘love hate’ relationship and there were pictures taken of the moment and I have to tell myself that it is not okay to use said photo as a Christmas card.

That being said, almost everybody at some point got a bit in each other’s faces which kind of took me a back. Most of us don’t really do much athletic stuff outside of the gym and pick up games of basketball so to see my friends get so ‘into it’ was rather surprising. And even though most of us were sore the next day—we’d all play again. But not with certain people. (Ava—you know who I’m talking.)

But what’s even funnier to me is that we aren’t just completive game wise—I think we tend to be a bit aggressive when it comes to our social events too. Everyone wants to have a good party and have people come when they plan stuff and people can get their feelings pretty hurt when they plan something and no one comes.

I always forget about how that feels but the night after broom ball was Samuel’s first party in Los Angeles—at least with my friends. He had held off on his birthday because he wanted to do a huge theme shindig and I told him that I would plan it as my gift to him. He picked a theme (inappropriateness) and found a venue (the super house) so the rest was mostly up to me.

Now I have to admit I am a perfectionist. If you’ve ever been to my house or watched me shop for clothes or even heard me talk about work—if I can’t do it flawless then I’ll just do it over and over till I can. And that’s with normal circumstances and the usual faces.

But this party had me on edge for a slew of reasons; it wasn’t my place so I felt kind of tied as to what I could do and when I could do it, it was going to be a blending of both our groups of friends which could go rather strangely, and it was also the first time Samuel had ever been the draw for a party.

Now I know the boy has been around for the better part of the year but it’s still hard to know if people like you and if they care about you and not just putting up with you. This is a conversation that has come up between us at points and I was really paranoid that people wouldn’t come (It didn’t help that there were two HUGE events the same night) and that he would take it to mean that my friends weren’t at all his friends. It’s a valid concern and one that I had at the front of my mind.

That and I sometimes don’t know how to read—or describe—Samuel’s friends. They are very different from my friends, not in a bad way, and some of them are very out going and very funny and likable and then there are the others that can be very anti-social or awkward with meaning anything by it. But this can be misread as being disinterested or weird and I just didn’t want tension. Or Samuel to have to baby-sit anyone. (This does not include the few guests that he used to sleep with before dating me.)

So on the day of the party I was a bit crazy. (And sore from broom ball). It just felt like one of those days when nothing got done fast enough, that money was being spent too fast and that nothing would be finished on time. Add to this the fact that Samuel’s party was the first since the BAR left and that makes it even weird and more stuff to get around creatively. It felt like every second I was finding a new hole to plug. And it didn’t help that people showed up either a bit early or right on time. (Who does this? I guess Samuel’s friends….)

But it ended up being an amazing time. So many people came, so many great friends of both of ours just dancing and talking and meeting new people and blending together. Even though I was a bit of a mess the whole night I have many awesome memories. Dancing with Kirby and Edden outside, talking writing and philosophy with Chessa, taking fab pictures with Lola, watching Miss Kaylie with her new date, making out with Samuel ‘Bond Girl’ style to distract him while the cake got sent up, Kelly’s awesome notes on the wall of inappropriate, Teddy awesome cheese cake and even Renee and Boris pointing in some social effort. .

It showed to me that people really do care about Samuel—and me too. And while I did get too paranoid—do people like us enough to come? Will it be cool enough to get a good rep? Will I not die of embracement at meeting more exes?

It was one of my best nights in a long time. Hell—it was one of my best weekends in a long time. It’s gonna take a lot to top that. Game on kids…. Bring it….

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Sadness

I always thought he was one of the greatest reporters left.



60 Minutes' Ed Bradley Dead at 65

Breaking news from the AP wire: Ed Bradley, the award-winning CBS newsman who has been a correspondent for 60 Minutes since 1981, died of leukemia on Thursday. He was 65. Bradley's long career was marked with an assortment of honors, including a Peabody award (for a June 2000 report on Africans dying of AIDS), a Damon Runyon Award for career journalistic excellence, and 19 Emmys, the most recent of which was earned for a segment on the reopening of the racially motivated murder case of Emmett Till
.

And who do we have now? Katie Couric?

Please.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Doesn't Take Much to Make Me Happy.

Just a good cup of coffee, a new song on my myspace profile and this--




WASHINGTON (AP) -- Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld, architect of an unpopular war in Iraq, intends to resign after six stormy years as Secretary of Defense, Republican officials said Wednesday.

Copyright 2006 The Associated Press
.


So sorry--so long!
Quote of the Week

This winner comes from Chessa regarding the crappy CNN election day graphics.

"your nifty graphic of the house seats and numbers and such would work really well when selling seats on ticketmaster."


Way to serve it!!!

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Vocab

I have heard this term a lot lately.....

Bromance = A non gay romance/friendship between two guys.

This cracks me up to no end. Try using it in a sentence--it is so much fun..

Monday, November 06, 2006

Slip of the Day

I meant to write

"I heart you..."

Instead I wrote

"I hate you."

Fate will not be denied.
Just So You Know

I have discovered new ways to be innapropriate.

It's not a proud moment in the grand scheme of things.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Anti Fashion Pre-emptive Strike

A fashion emergency from Chloe.

What you see below are not see-thru skirts. They are actually prints on the skirts to make it look as if the panties are visible and these are the current rage in Japan. They'll be the rage here in the USA soon.









I will slap any of you who dare to buy one these. Like a serious pimp slap so hard you'll think you died, came back to life, and died again. Nasty.

But not as nasty as leg warmers.
From Hodges--A respose.

This was the orignal post.

This is the most jaded as fuck blog I have ever posted and I considered editing some of my more inflamatory statements, but decided not to. Better to let everything stand as is and hope my readers are intelligent enough to engage in debate without hurling insults... Here goes.

================

I got a posting on my MySpace bulletin board last week encouraging me to go out and vote. It was a long, relatively well-written piece, much more intelligent than 90 percent of the things you usually see in your MySpace and it got it's point across of lighting a fire under the ass of young voters who might not vote. And it accomplished this with an antagonizing... I'd call it a DARE. The key sentence in the post was this: "They're calling our generation the Apathetic Generation." Basically with a war, a nuclear threat and a laundry list of other issues, "they" are saying we're too preoccupied with MySpace and our iPods and the finals of Dancing with the Stars to go out and even vote.

You know what I have to say to that? You're right! And can you fucking blame us? I assume the "they" in this posting meant the Baby Boomers. Our parents' generation who marched across campuses, rallied for a common cause and got shot at by the National Guard. They think it's a travesty that we're not more involved the way they were. Well gosh ex-hippies, could you please show me one thing all your hot and bothered marching accomplished in this nation besides a half-decade of better-than-average music? You people are the ones in charge right now and apparently, to listen to you and all your bellyaching, things are STILL fucked up. Well if they're fucked up, then it's YOUR FAULT. You were so riled up and idealistic and ready to change the world and THIS is what you came up with? Forty years later, our choices for president are an apparent imbecile and a guy who can't make up his mind which way he thinks he voted on something? Frankly, if this is the best you produced with all your passionate ire, I am not impressed.

And apparently YOU aren't impressed either because you've given up on trying to change the world in favor of just trying to make money any way you can. You ruined perfectly beautiful, perfectly pristine land in order to put up housing developments and corporate parks and billboards and WalMarts. You've got Home Depots and Targets in fifteen minute intervals and a Walgreens and Blockbuster at every major intersection. You've got the same ten damn songs playing on every radio station and nine hundred channels of Survivor clones playing twenty-four hours a day. This is the best you could come up with? You told us as kids that we had to work hard, play by the rules and go to college or else we'd never amount to anything. Well now the market is saturated with millions upon millions of us who bought into that hype which rendered most of our degrees essentially meaningless. We're qualified to fetch your coffee and put up with your shit. Fuck, I could have done that right out of highschool and saved myself a good eighty thousand dollars. You decided about twenty years ago that changing the world was no longer feasible, so you gave up and decided to simply change your own world - which basically meant saving up enough to go on a cruise every year and buy that timeshare in Florida. So you started buying property. You started building houses. You caused a supply and demand crisis that drove prices up so damn high, then started offering "interest only loans" that you've made it pretty damn near impossible for anybody in our generation's "middle class" to be able to buy a house that they have any prayer of actually paying off in their lifetime.

Guess what baby boomers, we've got a lot of our own shit to deal with just trying to survive in this world that YOU created. The world you were going to change forty years ago... well, you changed it alright. Thanks ever so much. And now you want to vilify us by saying we're apathetic? You know what, when it comes to politics, you're right, we ARE apathetic. You've shown us there's no value in getting riled up about things of that nature. For some reason, you still keep placing THE VOTE as the golden answer to all that ails this country. Somehow you've lost sight of something that was all too clear to you forty years ago: Politicians, ALL politicians are lying, scheming, dirty pigs who will promise you anything to get elected and then never deliver once they're in office. We all know that. Everybody knows that. But for some reason you choose to forget that fact every couple of years from the second week in October through the first week in November. During that time, you try to convince us that our vote actually means something, that it can actually change things. But let's not lie to ourselves. We're not voting for people who can actually change things. We're voting for talking points and sound bites.

I'll say this loud and clear so there's no mistaking what I'm saying: "Take your all powerful VOTE... and shove it up your wrinkled ex-hipped ass." How's that for apathetic?

I can hear the cries now. "People died for your rights! They died so you could have a say!"

Let's set the record straight shall we. These people that are always referred to in this age-old guilt trip, weren't fighting for liberty. Most of the guys who fought and died in the war for independence were poor farmers and laborers who realized they could make more money fighting in the military than they could making candlesticks. The idea of liberty from Great Britain was as intangible to them as a free Iraq is for us today. This is evidenced by the fact that when the war was over and the United States of America was formed, all these brave men who fought and DIDN'T die... WEREN'T ALLOWED TO VOTE! Voting was reserved for the elite class of landowners. THEY were the ones who really wanted independence. It had nothing to do with freedom of speech or freedom of religion. It had to do with THEIR freedom to make shitloads of money without having to pay taxes on it to England. So let's not give supernatural status to the fight for liberty. The ones who fought and died of course deserve to be honored for their bravery and their sacrifice. Unfortunately, everything they fought and died for (in theory) was perverted and raped the instant the war was over by the very people who encouraged them to embrace ideas like "Patriotism".

Maybe it's different these days. Everybody has the right to vote now, but what can those votes really accomplish anymore? Either we elect this rich arrogant liar who says he'll support gay marriage. Or we elect this rich arrogant liar who says he'll abolish abortion. Does it really matter? Does anybody really believe they'll deliver on these promises? Does it really matter who takes control of Congress next week? I mean REALLY? Is the tide of the country going to turn that much? Can anybody point back to a definitive point in the last forty years where a change of power yielded some dramatic result that wasn't going to naturally occur anyway? Our country is on a direct course to somewhere. I'm not sure where that somewhere is, but it's got the momentum of over two hundred years and a pork barrel full of multi-billion-dollar corporations. It's naiveté to think a new politician is going to have the kind of power to effect any REAL change. It would be like a squirrel thinking it could change the direction of a big damn Hummer barreling down the road at eight miles a gallon. The driver of that big SUV might swerve slightly for a second just to avoid getting blood on their paintjob. Then again, they might just squash the squirrel for getting in their way. Either way, before the squirrel even begins to fade in the rearview mirror, the Hummer will have reestablished its original course.

So to a full of apathetic shit heads like myself... if you feel no compulsion to go out and vote next Tuesday, don't let them make you feel guilty. Just like all those times you never visited your grandmother's grave... she didn't notice when you didn't show up, and neither will the country. If you DO feel compelled to go out and vote, at least make a half-hearted effort to show you actually want change and VOTE OUTSIDE PARTY LINES. Vote Green. Vote Libertarian. Vote Constitutional. Vote Independent. Vote for ex-actors, porn stars, athletes and country-western singers who have decided to throw their hat into the ring. People will say you wasted your vote, but at least with a candidate like that you are somewhat assured that you won't be voting for a career politician. Most of the people running under these banners are legitimately passionate about what they preach and very likely WOULD do everything in their power to bring about real change. Though once again, if they actually did get elected, it would still be like a squirrel taking on an H3, but at least we'll have made a token effort.

If you really want to make a difference though, don't sit around waiting for politicians to do it for you. If you learn anything from the Baby Boomer generation who mocks you, it should be that putting faith in politicians only leads to... well just look around. Instead, effect change on an individual level. Help your own community. Volunteer. Teach a kid to read. Walk for breast cancer. Take a lower paying job at a company whose ideals you actually respect. Pick up litter where you see it. WALK to the quarter mile to the post office. Buy hybrid. Avoid chain stores when you can help it. Shop for quality first and price second. Don't sue somebody just because you stub your fucking toe. Real change happens slowly. It happens by one person affecting another. Then that person affects somebody else. In time, perhaps enough people will be affected by the others in their daily lives that as a group they WILL rise up and make a real change. Then again maybe not. But at least there, you have a hope.

Voting is a great idea in theory... but let's not be naïve here people.


Neddy's Response

The beauty of our country is that we are allowed freedom of speech. Many people cared enough to come together and ensure that the rest of us would forever have that right. That all being said, this is one of the saddest, most disillioned blogs I have ever read. No doubt our country has problems but it always has and always will. But the thing is, we can change it if we choose to get involved. Politics for better or worse are an integral part of making that change. If you don't believe that, move to North Korea and see what a country is like where people have no say in their politics. There are so many things that polticians have done for the better of our country that I won't dignify the ignorence of this blog with a list. Instead of being whinny and angry, do some research and find out how we got civil rights, the education act, national parks and the ability for woman to vote and have equality. It's OK to be angry about today's political culture. Instead of doing nothing to change it, find a cause and person you believe in and help that voice be heard. Your daughter will be educated some day and vote because someone before you chose to get involved and the next time you hike in a national park, you too will reap the benefits of people before you that chose to be proactive in our goverment instead of believing that they were really that powerless.

Steddy Response

I thought it should be known, that I wrote that bulletin. Me, a 28 year old white male who owns an iPod, and is on MySpace. It wasn't the evil "they" that wrote that, it wasn't the ex-hippies that screwed everything up, it was me, one of us, one of the apathetic generation members.

One of the people who will be voting proudly on November 7th.

I didn’t write it to invoke guilt on those who don’t vote. I didn’t write it to preach, I wrote it so this would happen. Follow up blog entries, discussion, debate and hopefully a little bit of action. As you said in your last paragraph, “effect change on an individual level” – on an individual level this was one way to get people to take notice of what’s going on.

Unless you live under a rock - it should be painfully obvious what effect politicians can have on our country, just look at the past 6 years. Whether you support what's happened or are appalled by it, a lot has changed at the hands of these current political leaders. And for better or worse, voting is how we are allowed to show our support or anger at these decisions. You’re right: vote Green, vote Independent, vote Republican or Democrat – but there really is no excuse not to vote.

It’s true that career politicians are lately all we’ve been given, and we’re constantly faced with having to choose between the lesser of two evils. And yes things are a mess and much can be blamed on the previous generations; but if I walk into a room that stinks of shit I’m not going to just kick my feet up and hope the smell goes away and simply bitch about the people that where there before me, even if it was “THEIR FAULT.”


Hodge's Response

Do you really and truly believe that politicians are the reason women have the right to vote now? Or that they are the reason black people no longer have to ride on the back of the bus? While it's true that the final deciding vote to change the law has to be cast by an actual politician, it is NOT the politicians themselves who brought about this change. Society was changing. It was becoming obvious to all but the most ardently conservative that these changes were going to come eventually. Do you really think that, had there been differently thinking politicians in office at the time, that women would still not have the right to vote today? Of course not. It may have taken a couple years longer until more politicians (perhaps even the exact same ones) realized that there was no sense in fighting the changing tide of society. But to say that it was BECAUSE OF those politicians that the actual change came about is just laughable.

Even in regards to things that have gone on in "the last six years", it would be willful denial to think that they wouldn't have at least had the potential to go on the same way under another administration. Torture, poverty, nuclear threats, ups and downs in the economy... even the war in Iraq. I'm not completely certain Gore wouldn't have possibly come to the same decisions had he won in 2000and-if-you-say-he-did-win-selected-not-elected-I'm-absolutely-going-to-screamafter all he and his former boss were in possession of the same false information the new guy was.

(incidentally Steddy, I wasn't saying that a Baby Boomer WROTE this piece. The wording made it very clear it came from "one of our own." The specific sentence I was referring to, which set off this whole tirade was "THEY'RE calling us the Apathetic Generation." I assume you had a "they" in mind and I can only assume that it was the previous generation who was supposedly making this remark. Who else would have anything to say about us?)

As far as voting goes... perhaps I wasn't clear. Hell perhaps I said it all wrong in my attempt to get all my thoughts out on paper before the pissed off feelings dissipated. I'm not saying voting has NO PLACE in the overall scheme of things. Yes, I know we have it much better off than places like Korea (or the former Iraqi regime for that matter) where they have NO say in their government. But I also know that we should be holding ourselves to higher standards than simply saying, "Well we're better than all those dictatorships out there." But as far as I'm concerned, voting should be the LAST thing you do AFTER you've done everything you can to fix things on your own local scale, AFTER you've spoken, written and demonstrated loudly to others about your views and why they should be realities, and (and this is the key one) AFTER you embody in your own life the changes you want to see in the world . Only after you do all these things should you even THINK about expecting some elected official to do it for you. Too many people have this idea of voting as some kind of cure-all bandaid. They think they can hold their leaders to higher standards than they hold themselves. They yell and scream about how big business is ruining this country and then go shop at WalMart. They piss and moan that gay marriage will destroy the sanctity of marriage and then go watch things like The Bachelor and Joe Millionaire. They want change, so they vote, but then do don't do a damn thing about trying to bring that change about in their own lives. And THAT is my biggest gripe with the whole thing and what started off this whole bitch session.

You made the analogy of, "if I walk into a room that stinks of shit I'm not going to just kick my feet up and hope the smell goes away." Well personally, if I walk into a room that smells like shit, I'm not going to wait for a COMMITTEE to decide whether or not they have the people available to come clean it up. I'm going to grab myself a shovel and start cleaning the room MYSELF.

So I guess that is more the point I'm trying to get at. Go out and vote, fine. But don't rely on those elected officials to actually change anything. Change doesn't come about because of politicians. It comes about because of people riled up and pissed off enough to incite rebellion and let the politicians (as well as the corporations who REALLY control the politicians) know they mean business.


MY RESPONSE

Wow--just wow.

First off--let me say that I read your blog yesterday and was so thrown by it that I had to leave my office. While I--like Jennifer already stated--get the anger of where you’re coming from and your right to say it--what I am amazed at is the defeatist tone and blind venom toward seemingly anyone who has held a public office. (I am going to be upfront about the fact that my family has been involved with politics for years. Just so you know where I'm coming from.) I'm also the one who passed on the link to Steve and Neddy. That being said--

I think you really misread the point that Jen was trying to make when she mentioned the various social changes that have happened in the last generation. She wasn't imply that these things happened just because we passed policy but that the 'wrinkled ex-hippy' generation did have beliefs and did cause social change at a grassroots level --the type of change you are totally advocating to be made but also the same social changes that you claim they never accomplished..

But what I don't understand is this hatred toward every person who has ever set foot in Washington as an elected official. Somehow the public has gotten 'West Wing' and 'Mr. Smith Goes to Washington' confused with reality and expect some type of perfect political process that is just not real.

The truth is politics is a messy and complicated business. If you have ever spoken with an elected official you would quickly learn how much of law making is about compromise. It’s about balancing the needs of one group against another, one cause against another, one goal against another. Picture the number of times per day that you do something that you normally wouldn't in order to get someone to help you down the line with what you really want to get done. That's basically how politics work. Something for something. And that you can’t make everyone happy.

Now am I saying there is no misuse of power and influence? That corporations and lobbyists don’t get in the way of the process at points? Of course not-that would be very naive. But it’s just as naive imagining all politicians twisting their mustaches as they think of new ways to screw us over. It’s not true or fair.

If we're going to get to the real root of the current political problem then it's time to look in the mirror. More people know the names of the actors on 'Lost' than they do their own senators, their fantasy football stats over their representatives’ voting records and people wonder how we have a redneck for a president? It’s because the electorate isn’t bothering to education themselves at all politically. That to have the best qualified person for the job then you might have to actually know what their qualifications are.

Politics only work when people get informed and involved. And most people don’t choose to do that—they choose to complain about bad candidates or the lack of progress on ‘their’ issues or not even vote at all. None of these choices are apart of the solution—they’re a part of the problem.

I have never understood how people can take such a huge responsibility as a democracy so lightly. Somehow people have confused voting with ordering fast food—they want it fast cheap and easy—which is not what elections or lawmaking are about. That process is not about-nor should it be—instant results. If it was then the Cuban Missile Crisis and the Cold War both would have ended very differently. That when our government does have a knee-jerk reaction we end up in situations like Iraq; where there is no proof that WMD ever existed or that Saddam Hussein was even connected to Osama Bin Laden.

The truth is that the system does work. That voting—the who’s and what’s you choose—do matter. While it may not be the fastest turn around, change does eventually come and if you want to help facilitate it then get involved. If you really believe in something—a cause, a candidate, an issue—then it’s your responsibility to use your voice and get heard by your neighbors, your community and your politicians.

But just sitting still and doing nothing is not an option.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Serial Killer: A Halloween Story.

So Serial Killer has moved out. I don’t know if I have ever mentioned him but if you are one of the many who has lived at #236 (or one of the many to have dated inside of #236) then you know of whom I speak. A quick back-story for the unfamiliar.

Once upon a time three little girls went to the police---wait—wrong opening. Once upon a time three little college grads moved into a swell flat in a little cud sac known as Woodbridge Park, Studio City. Being the first apartment for both Edie and myself we were kind of excited to meet out neighbors while Kelly was as friendly as always.

Of particular note was the sexy neighbor across the way. Edie would grab me out of my room whenever said neighbor would be coming through the building. He was very hot with a great tan, amazing body and dark hair/blue eyes combo that was just dreamy in a totally Hollywood way. What was even sexier was that he was nice and always said hello whenever he found me smoking outside or talking with Edie. (Somehow we were always outside when he was coming home—go figure…)

While Kelly was vaguely disinterested (she was busy stalking Jimmy Kimble, Matt Stone and Trey Parker at the same time) Edie thought that I should try and date ‘Sexy’ which wasn’t going to happen for many a reason but nonetheless funny to imagine. Then came the day when we accidentally ended up with a piece of his mail. Edie was determined not that I should walk over all cute to give it to him but that this was a sign of sorts. And we both thought that the name was ironic.

Steven King.

So later that night—after already running into Steven coming home—I snatched up the letter and made my way across to his door. After a moment I knocked and then Steven opened the door. I made some funny/weak excuse about the postal mix up and handed him the letter. Sexy Steven looked at the letter then back at me.

“This is my roommate’s.”

Sexy Neighbor then called over the real Steven King. Now I was a bit shocked—not by the fact he was living with a guy, or that he was in a 2 bedroom apartment with a roommate that we had never, but that his roommate was terrifying. Picture the most generic scary, creepy, scary looking, child molester ever and that would be the one and only Steven King. He continued this strong impression by grunting at me, snapping the letter out of my hand and then basically closing the door in my face. Nice.

The next few days became a debate between the girls and I as how someone like that ended up living with Sexy Neighbor. The theories went from maybe they were related, to maybe Steven King was paying for sex, to maybe they were friends and I just caught him on a bad day. I was all set to ask Sexy neighbor a bit more about it when…

Sexy Neighbor was gone.

Not just like not around but totally gone. And the odd thing was that he left his bike behind and chained to the patio outside the apartment. We joked about how they must have had a lover’s spat and that Sexy was kicked out. But it was still a bit odd considering we never saw anything get moved out of the place.

But then we got distracted when we saw the New Sexy Neighbor. Young, very tan, perfect body--he managed to make Sexy Neighbor look plain. It also helped that NSN had a fondness for inappropriate and skimpy clothing and could be caught tanning in a Band Aid at any given time. He seemed an even odder match and we wondered if maybe Steven King WAS paying for sexy houseboys. Then came the day when he too was GONE. Once again with no signs of any actual moving out.

Even odder still was that Steven King suddenly had these two little bastard Chihuahua puppies with him. We joked around that maybe he was killing roommates and placing their souls in the bodies of annoying dogs so that they would stay with him. And adding to his allure was that Steven King continued to be rude to us all around the building--even when Edie just said hello. (Everyone likes Edie.) He was just really creepy and now he had two mean, little, yapping dogs as well. It was bizarre and led to the birth of nickname Serial Killer. (Get it? Steven King, Serial Killer, S.K.????)

Over the course of the last few years (and quite a few roommates) Serial Killer continued with his oddly anti-social behavior. He would just stomp around all quiet and intense—leaving nasty letters on doors or yelling at his dogs like they were people. Big oversized bags of trash taken out late at night, always covered with a light sheen of sweat and just the coldest, most impersonal looks if you met eyes with him on the stairs or walkways.

And now he is gone.

And I am a little weirded out by his abrupt departure. I also have to admit that I’m slightly disappointed that none of the other roommates were around to see this. But everything has a silver lining. I mean—I’m not a Chihuahua right?

But like every good killer story--there's more to come.