25 October 2006

It's About Sports...Tune in if you like

As I was looking through my jerseys today, trying to figure out what to wear, I thought of an interesting question, which I will share with you.

If you could have any six game-worn jerseys, which would they be?

  1. Stan Mikita's jersey from the 1961 Stanley Cup final game.
  2. You know that shot of Walter Payton jumping eight feet in the air for the touchdown? That jersey.
  3. The jersey Patrick Roy wore when he winked at Tomas Sandstrom in the 1993 Stanley Cup finals.
  4. Dick Butkus's first game jersey.
  5. The Golden Jet's jersey when he broke the 50-goal barrier. FYI, it was March 12, 1966, against the Rangers. The 'Hawks won 4-2.
  6. The jersey Dikta wore during that incredible touchdown run where he breaks seventy-four tackles. Seriously, it's like everybody who ever played for the other team got two shots at him.

What about you?


23 October 2006

Depression, Uninterrupted

I needed an awesome weekend. Wednesday is when justice failed me; Friday was a double whammy in that Derek Fucking Bastard’s insurance company said that they would not pay for the damage done to my bike, or to me. On the way home from work, on a brand new route that I hadn’t ridden before, I ran over some piece of accident shrapnel and got a flat on my rear wheel. Front wheel flats I can fix in five minutes, but rear wheel flats take at least an hour. Fucking deraileurs. Anyway, so my week was a good small window onto my month, which reflected the year to date; it was pure poo.

But there was a wedding or this weekend! Friends united in matrimony! Good food! Open bar! Let the healing begin!

Of course, there is the fact that I don’t really know the groom that well, and had met the bride once before, and that it was going to be hotel food, and that I had just gotten into all that broo-ha-ha with my brother about his alcoholism (when I find it funny, I’ll tell you about it), so I wasn’t in the mood to drink. Honestly, the only thing that sounded like a good idea was to step in front of at least one of the Metra trains taking me to the wedding. Painless, messy and loud; what can I say, it’s how I want to go out.

But I reined in those thoughts and proceeded. And you know what? It was…okay. I like it when a couple is enthused about getting married, and these two were. I attended the ceremony because my ride/host & hostess attended, and it was a quick and painless little thing. Had a cute moment where the groom and bride weren’t too sure about who should give a flower to the groom’s mom. It got a chuckle.

Then there was a brief hotel drinking fest, where I had two glasses of vino and started to feel a little queasy.

The reception was not at all like “Wedding Crashers,” which was disappointing because I really wanted to take advantage of a drunken bridesmaid. But no woman there was single that was also not someone I have known for ten years or more, or not what I would go running for. So I tried to be wingman for a young fella, a promising rookie with a lot of potential, but won’t step his game up to the big leagues. Kinda like Ryan Leaf, but without the petulant whining. Which would make him better than Ryan Leaf.

Then I find out that I can’t go home because the info on train schedules was misconstrued. So I crash at the home of Ren and co. and wind up feeling as intrusive as prison rape. No Benner, either. But Cash and I wound up being cuddle-buddies on the floor, so that was pretty sweet. Seriously, the highlight of my week was getting the chance to cuddle with something alive on a friend’s basement floor.

I thank Dave and Ren for putting me up, and I feel like shit that I forced myself into their house while she’s not feeling well and he was exhausted from being best man. It might be time for me to get a car.

What stopped me from stepping in front of the Metra at 0835 on Sunday? Several things: a long-standing fear of death; inside knowledge of how much that fucks with train conductors; leaving my mom with the two excuses she has for sons; a curiosity as to what the future holds; and that I was not about to waste the $3.80 cup of whatever fancy-schmancy cinnamon-flavored beverage I purchased from Caribou Coffee.


20 October 2006


I cannot win. A guy hits me with his car as I am riding my bicycle, and he gets out of a ticket and his insurance won't pay, because he lied in his statement and I told the truth. I get dumped by the best girl I've ever been with because, instead of going with my plan about lying concerning my former marriage, I told her the truth. She wanted to be the first and not the best, so she split.

The number of times telling the truth has bitten me in the ass is starting to slide into the range of numbers we call "astronomical."

Everything about this American "culture" promotes lying. If you lie in court, you win. If you lie while running for office, you win. If you lie about anything, people are more apt to believe it because the truth doesn't sell shit. The Great Gatsby is considered one of the greatest works of American literature and it's about a man who lies about who he is to get money and fame to get the girl. He may have gotten killed in the end, but that was because of someone else's lie. And he still got laid, remember. Ben Franklin is thought of as the greatest American, and he was all about putting on a front for people, so that they will see you in a certain light, regardless of whether that view is true or not. Jefferson was a slave-owning, philandering hypocrite.

If there was a contest for huge suckass loser, I would lose that. I am tired of my honesty being what holds me back. The way I see it, if I followed the examples set by our American predecessors and current statesmen and powerful people, then lying is the only thing to do to get ahead. If I lied to the cops and the judge, Derek Fucking Bastard would have a ticket, his insurance company would be paying my rent for the next three months and I wouldn't feel so FUCKING IMPOTENT thanks to this shit. It's time to lie.

But since fucking up is the only thing I do better than losing, I would just screw it up too. And lying would take a lot of work; I'd have to remember everything I ever said to anyone. And since my memory is as faulty as that little strip of land outsie San Andreas, I'd have to take notes on my conversations. That just smacks of effort, and keeping myself in some state of upright already takes up way too much energy for me to devote to any other pursuit.

So fuck it, I just lose. Maybe I should just go the way of abject self-destruction. Utter ruin. See how that goes. Maybe, since I suck so badly, I might just improve myself.

Right now, I can't scream loud enough.


14 October 2006

All Work and No Play Makes for a Loco Gringo

I Appreciate Irony

ME: "I'm the king of apathy."

GIRLY: "No you aren't."


* All caps represent outburst of emotion


Customer Relations for a Sleep Deprived Gringo

1) A customer interaction concerning loss prevention sensors on product.

Customer: "Needle nose pliers will take care of it."
Me: "Needle nose pliers are pretty much my favorite tool for anything. Except for when I need to hammer something. In which case I use my palms. I'm that good.

2) A customer and an associate (Jazzmaster) noticing me writing notes while at the work place.
Customer: "He's writing notes."
Jazzmaster: "Are you plotting Gringo?"
Me: "Yeah."
Jazzmaster: "Against who?"
Me: "The man. [The founder of this company]. I will find his site, exhume, and punish severely."

3) Jane Blow, a random customer fills out an address field in a short form and the following situation ensues.
Me: "I'm sorry, I'm unfamiliar with the area. What does "DP"* stand for [as a city in Kansas]?"**

*DP is an abbreviation for the term "double penetration" and how it applies to the pornography industry. I used this purposely.
**It turned out it didn't say DP, and Jane Blow seemingly did not know the definition found in asterisk one (though she could just have been oblivious).

4) On shoving several items into Hell's smallest offered bag.

Customer: " I don't know if it will fit."
Me: "Well I'll just grease it up a bit and see if I can't shove it in there."

Gringo's Note: All of these are real life interaction with customers in Hell, while working. When I don't get my sleep several reactions are possible, but namely annoyance, inhibition of spoken thoughts, and delirious giddiness.
Also I must wonder if people are honestly this obtuse, if I am that subtle, or if the general public doesn't expect someone to be that offensive while at work? Oh if they only knew the assorted mental ruminations of the average retail jockey.


11 October 2006

A Little Slip

Walking down the street on the way to Eric’s, with Gary depressed and Dani feeling for him, as she always did when he got like this, they were hoping for a cup of coffee and an empty diner.
“I don’t know what I did wrong, Dani. I really tried this time, y’know? I was as perfect as I can be with her.”
Gary was one of Dani’s best friends. They had known each other for well over ten years now and she was his favorite person to talk to. They agreed that she was the smarter of the two of them, and seemed to be good at taking in a lot and saying just the right thing at the right time.
“I can’t think of a girl who made me happier than her, Dani-mal. She’s just so…everything!”
Dani tripped on a broken bit of sidewalk. She had tripped at this spot quite often, and chastised herself every time. “Stupid,” she said.
“What did I say?” he asked.
“Not you, me. The sidewalk, again.”
“I never did get around to putting up that sign for you.”
“That’s okay. I probably wouldn’t see it anyway.” Dani walked head down a lot.
At Eric’s, it was not busy. They got a booth in the corner furthest from the door. There was a nice view of the main drag of town. Setting down their coffees, he said, “You know where we should go one of these days?”
“Where?” Dani asked, feeling better to see him enthused about something.
“Remember that little greasy spoon by Morrie Mage’s? On Halsted, I think, or near Ontario, something like that.” He was almost smiling.
“Yeah, what about it?”
“When was the last time we hung out downtown?”
“We doubled that one time,” she said, knowing it was the wrong thing to say. She could see him falling into memories of the beginnings of his relationship with Melanie, when the world was sunshine auburn-gold and perfect breezes pushed him down the street to his love. For her, it was the end of that last relationship; nothing seemed to last too long for her. Stupid, she thought.
“What?” he asked. Sometimes he was in her head.
“You said, ‘Stupid.’”
“That was out loud?”
“Uh- huh.” He looked like a thundercloud.
“Not you, me.”
They sat in silence. After a few minutes, Dani got up and bought a chocolate brownie and got a carafe of coffee. She sat back down and handed him the brownie. He smiled immediately. “How’d you know?”
“Best friend’s sense plus a good dose of women’s intuition.”
“Thanks, kiddo.”
“I hate it when you call me that, you know.”
“And that is the root of why I call you that.”
“Give me back the brownie!”
“No! I’m sorry, I won’t do it again!”
“Yes you will.”
“Yeah,” and he smirked in that scoundrel’s way.
Four hours and not a few beers later, at Healy’s (the old Healy’s, not the new, shiny pretender to the throne), she was embroiled in selling him on Melanie’s lesser points, while Alanis Morisssette fell head over feet out of the jukebox.
“And she was not perfect, Gary. Even you know that. Didn’t she kick you out of the house one day because you talked to her father for too long?”
“I was ignoring her!”
“No, you were enjoying someone else’s company other than hers. She was always like that.”
“Why wouldn’t she come and hang out with us? Because she was too good for us, that’s why. She couldn’t share you with anybody or anything.”
“We’re not the easiest group to get into, Dani. The conversations we have are years old. Hell, you and Pete have been having that argument about the Citation for seven years now!”
“Still, she didn’t make the effort to try. She hung out twice and never came back out.”
“I guess.”
“She wasn’t good enough for you, Gary.”
Perplexed as only someone inebriated could be, he asked, “What do you mean?”
Sighing, then taking a deep breath before continuing, Dani said, “She never bothered to learn about you, Gar. It was all about her; you had to know about her, and yet she never asked anything about you.
“You could sit here all night and half the next day and tell me about every facet of her life, but she couldn’t tell you the name of your first dog, or your most hated movie, or the first time you swore. She never learned you Gary; she never studied you. She was with you during the easy part, and then when she thought it got hard, she left.”
“So she wasn’t good enough?”
“And that’s why?”
“That, and other stuff.”
“So, Dani, who would be good enough for me?”
“I don’t know if I will ever think anyone’s good enough for you, Gary.” And she felt herself slip in her chair.
“What does that mean?” He looked so stupid right now, confused like a puppy that just heard it’s bark for the first time. She felt the flush in her skin as her beers encouraged her further despite the glow of suspicion she saw in Gary’s eyes.
“Because you’re a great guy! You’re a poet and a musician, you’re well read, responsible, punctual and a really good listener. You like to be romantic and do little things for people. You’re polite, damn near chivalrous. You’re smart and funny and you have a thing about you that makes people smile when you talk to them and everyone feels special when you’re around. You’re respectful and sweet and have a great smile and you’re strong in every way.”
She didn’t want to stop, even though she knew she should. She decided to ignore herself this one time. “Every girl should love you, Gary. You are as close to perfect as any man not Jesus has a right to be.”
Looking up at him, she said with a trembling voice, “You’re the best.”
He couldn’t respond, she saw. She was wrong; the first voice was right; she should have just shut up, she should run from the bar, from him, never looking back, forget he and his little smirk and hazel eyes that glow gold in the sunshine ever existed.
Looking down, she said, “Stupid.”
He took her chin between his thumb and forefinger, and gently lifted her eyes to his, and said, “Not you, me.”


10 October 2006

A Shout-Out to the Big Guy

Thank you God, for:
  • my life, which is perfect, even when it's not;
  • my pain, because it means that where it now hurts there was once something wonderful;
  • my optimism, which hides in my pessimism;
  • the people I know, and the ones I meet;
  • swear words;
  • the incredible sunrises and sunsets over the last two weeks (they've been faboo!);
  • every little kid who's smiled at me;
  • all the opportunities I've been given (I've tried to use them all!);
  • the blessings that I can now call memories;
  • listening to all of my whining (that goes double for you folks!);
  • not giving up on me, even after I did;
  • physics;
and last but not least...
Thank you, God, for all of the beauty that's been crammed on this paradise we call Earth. Especially the ladies! Great job on the looks, but do they all have to be nuckin' futs?

Just, playin' ladies; you know I love you.


03 October 2006

Outnumbered and Outgunned

All right, I gotta bitch. Sorry guys, but funny isn’t really in my skull right now. I need to get this out, and I figure that we all know each other (and if we don’t then I don’t care) then I can just dump this out. If I don’t talk about it I will make the Earth blow up. But not before we send Ren’s new bundle of joy off in a ship so that s/he may become a superhero on a planet orbiting a blue sun.

At work I am the man. I don’t mean this in a good way. I am the sole “guy” on the job. Sure, there’s M, but he’s a real librarian for God’s sake. He can’t do the “boy work.” That is for me. I’m the fuckin’ lackey. I pick up the heavy stuff and put it down somewhere. I arrange the furniture whenever it is required. I put the crap together that needs to be built. I change the light bulbs. I replace the toilet paper; I clean the vomit up from the bathrooms. I take care of any dead birds or other post-life animals around the building. I occasionally refill the tampon machines. How did
that become boy work?

I learned today that Zeepdoggie has a new task. I am now responsible for the leaves that may clog our drain and cause the library to flood. At the time the drain was installed out back by the garbage cans, all the builders did was dig a shallow hole to take the rain in. It doesn’t drain to shit. And some leaves gummed it up, and somehow a garbage can was on top of it. So the meeting room and the Children’s section got quite damp. So now, from what I understand, I am to “check the status of the drain.” I was too upset to ask as to when I should do this. Once a month? Daily? Or should I just wait until it’s raining, ride my bike over, and clear it then? Surely, this is something anybody in the library can do? It starts to rain, and one of the librarians pops her head out the door and takes a status check on the drain. Why is it on me?

Old Zeepdoggie has to do all the boy work on a job that is staffed 99% by women, and not a one of them is single. God may find this funny, but I sure don't.

I learned something very important on this job; polygamists are idiots. I don’t care how good the sex is; putting up with more than one woman’s bullshit is masochistic.