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Showing posts from October, 2008

I have a plan. Right?

So I quit my job today. It was a pretty good after that. During one of my breaks I went into the break room. The vending machine in the break room is an older model, I guess. It has an interior compartment that revolves around. You can choose from an assortment of snacks that you do not want. I tested the door in front of the Mountain Dew. It opened. Huh. I thought. A free drink! I closed the door, pulling my free drink out. Suddenly the machine freaked out. It started beeping and spitting quarters out. Jackpot! It spat out $20 in quarters.

So I put them in my bag.

I've been thinking lately. Ever since Tuesday, really. People ask me what I'm doing a lot, now. "I'm in an EMS class," I tell them. "Are you going into medicine?" They ask. "No, I'm a geology major." I answer. "But I want to be a musician. Or a filmmaker." They stare at me for a second. "Oh."

"Why?" They ask.

I do not know. …

A continued exercise in regret.

Sometimes the seasons make you think about things you feel bad about. I was thinking the other day. I thought about things I wish I'd said to people. Things I wish I hadn't said to people. Things I wish I'd done differently. Things could've been so much nicer. It's the steps you don't take that you don't notice until later, when it's too late. When you're too far down the trail to turn back. I wish I had kept in touch. I wish I hadn't been so distant. I wish I'd smiled more. What good is it to have those shared memories? To remember you in everything I touch? There's no point in caring about it now, I guess.

That's okay.

In middle school everyone started to split off into their groups. Everyone was so excited to finally fit under one label. All of the athletes could sit at their own table and talk about athlete things. All of the nerds sat at their own table to play Magic: The Gathering. All the counter-culture kids sa…

MedCon this is Medic 6, en route.

There weren't any other cars out. Not that early in the morning. There was only one other person on the bus. I shivered under my jacket and stared out the window. 5:09 AM. Things are so different when you're on the inside of the glass looking out. Damn buses always blocking the way and driving slowly. It's just people going places.

"Don't worry about breaking shit in here," Chris the paramedic said. "If you break it that means it's been broken 15 times before you." We got the tone and loaded up. My first call. It all went by so quickly. The first call blended into the next which blended into the next. It seemed like it wouldn't ever stop. Blurs of faces and papers. Names and questions. Tubes and patches. Beeps and sirens. Blood and wailing.

"People just need to fucking chill out," Chris told me. "Things would be a lot better that way." I smiled. It sounded familiar. We stopped for lunch 5 or 6 hours in…

You probably can't do things like that.

So it's my birthday. Seeing Ben Folds last night really gave me a kick in the ass. Music. It's right in front of me all the time. It's in my head. It's in my hands. My fingers. Time to start making use of it.

I also passed my test this morning, so that was pretty nice. I suggested an intervention that showed incredible foresight on my part, apparently. My instructor was impressed. I shrugged. It happens. I smiled and walked out of the room. I didn't get to give blood, though. It was disappointing. They close so early.

Birthdays feel like regular days now. There's no big slumber party. There's no huge get together. There's no day off. It's a normal day. More people talk to you. That's nice, I guess. You get a lot of notifications on Facebook. It's kind of irritating. That's okay. At least people remember you. Or check their upcoming birthdays. Maybe I should talk to some of those people. I never do that anymore. …

Don't change your plans.

"Man, why are you doing geology?" Joe asked me. People like to ask me that. "I don't know." I told him. "I like dinosaurs." "Yeah, I like dinosaurs too." He said. "I like looking at them. I like watching my kids play with them and shit. But man, what have dinosaurs ever done for you? Fuck dinosaurs!" I laughed. "Fuck that shit, man." He continued. "You're a musician."

I stopped smiling and everything got heavy.

I looked up at him. It's been four years. Four years since we met. We're not teacher and student anymore, really. We're friends. We're family. I stood up. "Get your shit straight." He said. "And figure out what you want to do." We shook hands. "Alright." I said. "It's music." He added.

"I know." I said.

"Alright. I don't want any of that depressed shit or any of that crying shit." I started t…

How many did you take, exactly.

So my head hurts. I've got a wicked headache right now. Some days are funny. Sometimes the things that would make you upset just roll right off of you. Or bounce off your head. Some days you can take anything and keep smiling. It's funny how things work out.

I got my camera today. How exciting! I walked into the store and went directly to the cameras. A few minutes and a big bill later I walked back out, camera in hand. I started taking pictures of everything. People, things in my room, my shoes. It was nice. Finally, I can take pictures again! Then my car started acting up again. The same problem as before was starting to return. I recognized the warning signs.

After I finished my test I stopped off by the gym. A few friends were playing racquetball, and I figured it would be nice to see them. I haven't played racquetball much in a while. Although I was certainly not dressed for the occasion, I found myself serving the ball in the next game. It was a nic…

So hard to let it go.

Work has gone back from being a nuisance to being a routine. It is more related to my own mood than the actual work I do, I think. That's okay. I was working on a report my supervisor had given to me. Check lists. Cross-reference lists. Find the missing funds. I opened my desk drawer.

Where are all of my pens? I asked myself.

In place of my office supplies and papers were various minor decorations. Most prominently featured was a bag of fake pearl necklaces. I closed the drawer and grabbed a pen from the neighboring desk. Oh well.

I keep forgetting that my birthday is coming up this weekend. There are just too many things to take care of, first. So much work to do. To catch up on. To plan. We started filming on Wednesday. It went well. Not as fast as I would have hoped, but even so it was satisfactory. There is a good cast, I think. We chose to work with good people. There is a good chance, I think, that this project splits our friendship. I can feel tensions ri…

Feels good man.

I finally feel okay. I feel like I can handle it all. Everything. Things are not so bad, I think. Nothing is quite out of my reach. I hope. It's like everything is getting back on track. I'm moving forward again. I'm doing good things. I'm getting caught up in my classwork. It feels good. I'm helping my friends out.

"Do you have my saxophone?" My friend asked me. I thought about it. "No," I answered. "She gave it back to you back in high school when she got her new saxophone." "I think she still has it." He said. I knew she didn't, but asked anyway. "Damn." He said. "Don't worry, we'll find it." I told him. So I looked. I thought about all the possibilities. Where is the last place you saw it, I asked myself. The high school. "Did you check the high school?" I asked him. He never responded. I went to the high school on unrelated business and ran into an ol…

Moving, keep moving.

People are difficult. Right now, they're your best friend. In a second you won't be able to stand another second with them. You'll be hugging them one minute and struggling not to punch them in the face the next. It's ridiculous. Is this how healthy relationships are supposed to go? Probably not, I think.

That's okay.

I like to think of myself as a pretty calm guy. I can tolerate a surprising amount of nonsense from people. Most of the time. Everybody has their bad days. Those days where it just seems like every little thing is stacked against you. Every word someone says to you is twisted and amplified until it's a personal attack. It wears you down. Until you don't even want to stand up anymore. What's the point?

I can feel the bitterness. I can feel it rising in my throat as I look around at everyone. Why, I think. Why are you surrounded by people like that? In truth, I don't stand to gain anything from, well, anything I decide. O…

Don't move a muscle. Smile.

I was cleaning up my room a little bit the other day. I picked through the rubble that was the bottom of my book shelf and made a discovery. It had been so long since I'd even seen the bag, even longer since I'd opened it. I pulled it out. Tubes of undeveloped film spilled out from behind it and rolled across the shelf. I opened the bag.

And pulled out my camera.

I was visiting family in California when I'd gotten it. I must've been around 8 or 9 years old. I had just met the guy, my grandmother's roommate. We didn't speak during my visit until we were about to leave. "Wait," he told me. "I've got something for you." He came back a second later with his hands behind his back. "Do you like to take pictures?" He asked me. I nodded. "Yes." "Then you'll like this." He handed me the camera. It was an old film camera. Not an old-fashioned one, though. It still needed batteries to wind the fil…

Bus driver? I'll let you finish.

After I left work I got stuck in traffic. It's been such a long time since I've really driven anywhere. I forgot about the traffic. I pulled to a stop at a red light. On the side of the road in some gravel was a school bus. Must be on its way to school, I thought. I saw the bus driver standing next to it.

He was peeing on the bus.

There was no mistake in my mind that he was peeing on the bus. Not in the bushes or just off to the side of it. On the bus. He was peeing on the bus. I don't understand that. Why would you pee on what's yours? I would probably never pee on my own car. I've peed on cars belonging to other people, but that's different. Your car is a part of you in the same way a bicycle is part of you. An extension. A dancing partner. You don't pee on your dancing partner.

So I kept driving. Seriously, though. Who does that?

Sometimes I think about leaving. Acting on some dreams. Going places. Doing things. What's holding me d…

Yeah, that is not okay.

So stuff is okay, I guess. Things are alright. My friend and I are actually making some decent headway on our project. It's been such a long time since I've made a movie. Actually made a movie. Not just started it. I feel pretty good about where this is going, though. That's good. It's a good thing. I'm pretty excited about it, honestly. I think the scripts we've written so far are pretty funny.

They are probably not as funny as I think.

I tend to get unreasonably close to my work. That's okay, I guess. I think a lot of people tend to do that. It makes it hard to hear criticism. I have no problem with handing out the criticisms, though. That's always fun. Actually it is not all that fun. I know how they feel. That's okay.

We're just having some casting issues, I guess. We're planning for a lot of side characters to come in for one-shots episodes, but we haven't quite managed to fill those out. Or develop the characters t…

Just one of those days. As usual.

Going to work on 2 hours of sleep is a bad idea. Going anywhere on 2 hours of sleep is just a bad idea in general. You don't realize it when you're asleep, but places get cold. Very cold. You notice these things when you're awake. I also get colder than most people. That's okay. It's just bad luck, I guess.

The only person I talked to today at work was my new co-worker. I showed her around our section of the office. I also don't remember her name. I was listening to music the whole time. Afterwards I went off to my favorite bathroom stall. It is beginning to not be my favorite because of all the terrible things that tend to happen when I go into it. I crossed my fingers for a normal bathroom adventure.

Scrawled across the stall divider in pencil were the words "if u whont to get hed call me" followed by two local phone numbers. I recognized the phone numbers immediately as the phone numbers the guy had given me before. The dick sucking gu…

Maybe you aren't so bad after all.

"Eat the chicken or eat the pudding." My dad told him. "Just eat something." My brother looked down at the two dishes in front of him. A small bowl of banana pudding and a small plate of orange tinted chicken. Indian food, I thought. Not that great.

I leaned over to him. "Dip the chicken in the pudding. That way you can eat twice as much twice as fast." He looked at me, slightly disgusted. "What?" "It's the same way that people dip french fries in chocolate milkshakes." I continued. "People do that?" My grandmother asked. "Yes," I said. "I know a few people personally who enjoy it." "That's gross."

"Although," she added. "I sometimes dip potato chips in ice cream." I couldn't help but offer an offended look. "It's very strange, but it's a nice blend of sweet and salty."

"Oh." I said. "That's gross."

I tur…

How does this make you feel.

So I tried to write some poetry today. It was okay. I used to write poems every day. Most of the time they were terrible, terrible poems that didn't make any sense. I wish I could write some of those again. Things don't always have to make sense. They're actually nicer when they don't.

My poem got angry. Very angry. Very quickly. It alarmed me a little bit. I'm not usually an angry or emotional person. Well, sometimes. Sometimes I get angry. I get angry a lot, actually. I'm good at hiding it. Or pretending I'm not really angry. Or maybe I'm not really angry. I get angry a lot or I don't get angry a lot. It's one of those. Or both.

If I was a sin I would be wrath. I know this for certain because I took an internet quiz on it one time. I can see that. I'm also a Scorpio. They're vengeful. Being scorpions and all. In middle school I had an orange shirt with a scorpion on it that I wore to gym a few times. People didn…

That's got to count for something, at least.

It's always nice to see how you've given up on your dreams. Or it's not nice. I forget which one it is. I've realized something recently though. I have no follow through. At all. That is not that great.

If you had asked me what I wanted to become when I was younger I would've told you in a heartbeat. Filmmaker. Musician. Paleontologist. A terrible combination of all of them. Now? What do I want to be? What am I striving to become?

I do not know.

I'm just going through the motions. What happened to my aspirations and motivation? I must have misplaced them when I started growing up. If I started that at all. I was at home trying to play the guitar recently. Trying to write songs. I couldn't start. I couldn't even get myself to start thinking about it, really. I had given up before I had done anything.

I'm supposed to be working on a movie. We've got a script and everything. I can't even imagine shots. I want to, but nothing…

Why would you do that.

There's something about going to the bathroom at work. It seems like every time I go in there something silly happens. I went in today to take care of some business. I had just sat down when someone else came in. They immediately shut off the lights. I was in no position to do much of anything, so I gave up. I could hear the other person shuffle into a stall and do what they needed. I was unable to perform. "Could you turn the light back on?" I asked. The other person ignored me. They turned the light back on when they left. I'll come back later, I thought.

And I did, an hour later. I opened the door to the bathroom. There was someone in my stall. Damn, I thought. More importantly, though, they were screaming. In agony, I guess. But it was the most God awful, blood curdling screaming I've heard in a long time. I decided it was time to leave for the day.

I got my car back from the shop afterward. As I drove home into the fading light, I thought a…

Disappointing memories, revisited.

So I saw my cousin this weekend. I haven't seen him in years. I have so many fond memories. We used to run around outside on his land. Riding horses and ATVs. Dark tag. He was older than me, and I looked up to him. Then he made some poor choices. Now he's feeling the consequences of that.

Supposedly.

I couldn't help but distrust him. His motives for visiting. His words. I could smell the smoke on him and the sores on his arms gave me something to wonder about. He looked like he was in his 40's. It was hard to believe he just turned 21. I shook his hand and smiled. Then I checked my wallet. I thought he was going to steal something.

It took a lot of effort for me to laugh at his jokes. I didn't want to. He wasn't the same person I knew before. "It took you long enough to get here." I told him. "I got lost," He said. "I had to take every wrong road before I found the right one." It's like threading a bike chai…

And the art of bicycle maintenance.

One of the things I enjoy is my bike. So I worked on it today. It was a nice day outside, so it was nice to be there. I hardly spend enough time outside now. I wish I could spend all of it outside like I used to. I took everything apart so that I could clean and lubricate all the components. Things are so much nicer when you take the time to tinker with them. When you have the patience to brush off the tiny traces of grime. You don't even have to think about it, really.

But you do.

You focus on all the little things. Then you put those things together. Then you put those things together. Then you've got your bike back. It's calming. Peaceful. Simple mechanisms made of simple mechanisms, but when you step back it's a confusing mess of metal. It is a cipher, and I am the cryptologist. Finished. One serviced bicycle, my labor of love. A breeze blew by, I caught a hint of fall. I jumped onto the bike and brought the peddle back around. I looked down and r…

Bus driver? Oh, nevermind.

I do not like riding the bus all that much. Especially when the sun starts to go down. It happens just like in the movies. The sun light stops touching the ground and all of the ghouls start coming out of the woodwork. It makes me uncomfortable. But I ride the bus occasionally, there is nothing wrong with it. It is convenient.

I took my seat on the bus and stared out the window. One of the things I enjoy about life is staring out the windows of vehicles. You watch the world go by. All of the people and buildings and lives turn into a big motion blur. All of those people walking down the sidewalk have their own story, a story you'll never get to hear. I'll bet they've got good stories. Some of them, anyway.

We passed an ambulance. The crew was loading someone into the back, lights flashing. I'll be doing that in a couple of weeks, I thought to myself. I looked around the bus. Nobody looked at or said anything to anybody else. That's okay, I thought. …

Balls.

It's just bad luck. I've found that the worst days are the ones full of minor annoyances. This is something that most people will agree with, I think. You stub your toe a few times or knock your shins against something. Maybe you slam your finger in something or trip. All the little things add up and get blown up into the worst days while days with legitimate misfortunes are just bad days.

So I was at Dobie with a friend yesterday. "Ooh." I said, walking into the comic store. There was a $2 bin of comics wrapped up. I rifled through them, looking for good covers. "Are you serious?" He said. "You're one to talk," I said. "Besides, they're $2." I stood in the check-out line for about 5 minutes before making it to the desk, smiling. "That'll be $2.20" The clerk said. I handed him my card. "Oh, there's actually a $5 minimum." He said. "Oh." I said. I picked up a few more comi…