Monday, November 29

Another Way of Breathing

Things take time. Whether it's a sunrise or a familiar smile, things have to grow before they ripen. It's the single hardest lessson most of us ever have to learn. This idea that while our spans may be limited, everything around us still takes time to happen. One does not wait for the other.

        ...and the clock is always ticking.

It's having that knowledge, and the way that it's importance gets skewed the longer your timer has been going that can make things difficult in life. The fact that no matter how much we want something, we'll always have to wait.

The trouble is that it becomes too easy to get caught up in one extreme or the other. There are those who look for microwaves to make things happen faster. If you can get it now then you can move on to something else. And the more you feel like you're doing, the less time you feel is wasted. Even if the flavor is something less than you imagined, it's the time saved that matters in the end.

On the other side you'll find people who wait too long to do anything. Assured in the knowledge that if you take time to make each moment special, it will be worth more to you in the end. Quality before quantity. Not counting your ducks before they hatch. Choosing your battles.

But when you're working for singlular moments in a limited timeframe, there's always the risk of waiting too long. Almost as if the fear of acheiving things too fast reaches such a level that you risk missing your own life as a result of your desire to wait for just the right moment. Just the right indications. Just the right signs.

The key is to breathe. To take in the air and then let it back out. To go through moments at the speed they need to happen in. To move with the currents. To let the flowers bloom. To breathe.

       The key is to take in what's good
       and to leave behind what's not.


To properly make oxygen, you need to mix a bottle of light rum with 12 ounces of Alize Gold Passion liqueur, 12 ounces of fresh orange juice, and 8 ounces of fresh lime juice. Put it all into a pitcher, and then let it chill on ice for at least four hours.

Then when you're ready to serve it, stir 5 cups of crushed ice into the pitcher. But the most important part, the absolute key to the whole thing is to quickly float a teaspoon of Demerara rum across the surface of each drink you pour. Some people like to hook an orange slice over the edge of the glass, but without that Demerara -- it's just not oxygen.

                 And if you don't have oxygen
                 you're not going anywhere at all


[Listening to: Miles Davis, "Tad's Delight"


Friday, November 26

They're Coming to Get You Barbara

You know, there's probably all sorts of productive or important things that I could be doing right now -- but all of that's gone out the window ever since I came across this fantastic little doodad earlier today.

It takes a minute to get used to all the controls, but once you get the hang of it it's like you can't stop yourself from inflicting your evil zombie minions on all the little pink dots out there.

Then once you get used to that one, try out this even faster version!

               Panic, pink boy... PANIC!!!!

[Listening to: George Clinton, "Do Fries Go With That Shake?"


It Sounds Kinda Cool, but Actually it Sucks

...a lot

[Listening to: Black Moth Super Rainbow, "Vietcaterpillar"


Wednesday, November 24

Tryptophantasia

I used to run this a website called There Have Been Bad Moments.

Well -- actually I still run it, it's just that I haven't updated or added anything to it for almost two years now. I suppose one of these days I should just delete it or something. Archive the files, clear the webspace and use it for something else. But I leave it there - a reminder of myself.

There's still a lot of good writing there, things I'm proud of.. but looking back at it today it seems like a million years ago. Like it was something from a different age, like it was written by a different me.

             a smarter me
             or perhaps

             a me less stupid

Maybe it's just everything that's going on. Maybe it's the way I managed to crash my day into a parking lot with just a handful of words this morming... But whatever the case, there was this strange feeling that kinda swept over me while I was browsing through my own past. This sensation I couldn't shake while I was reading the words that told everyone what we used to be...

essential amino acids help the body produce niacin

THBBM started out as an online diary, when the definition of such a thing was a lot more like what it sounds like. It started out as retelling of my day, a computerized version of the tattered spiral notebooks that I used to keep. But after a while, it turned into something else.

             ...A lot of things changed over those years

All things grow up, I suppose. I like the way that site evolved. Even in the end, when the convenience and accessibility of blogging made journalling seem so archaic and slow -- it still provided me a place to cultivate my writing, test out ideas, and ramble on for days about whatever struck my fancy at the time.

niacin helps the body produce serotonin

I haven't updated that site in almost two years.

But when I read it, I know exactly what was happening in my world at the time. Every face, every reference, and every metaphor. They all come rushing back to me, like stepping into a photograph or waking up into a recurring dream.

             Iron Man live again...

Sometimes I want to go back. Most times I know that I can't. Perhaps that's why I keep it around, with it's clunky interfaces and mile-long writings. This horse-drawn carriage in a world of jetpacks and transporters -- driving down the information superhighway with an orange safety triangle on the back, reminding me of what can be produced when you're willing to put in the time.

serotonin plays an important role in sleep

It's like a meal you only eat once a year.
The dinner that takes a full day to cook.

                  The one that everyone looks forward to,
                  the one everyone misses when it's gone.


[Listening to: Paul Kelly and the Messengers, "Dumb Things"


No Parking on the Dance Floor

I'm afraid of Decepticons
I'm afraid of the words.
I'm afraid I can't help it,
I'm afraid I can't...

[Listening to: KMFDM, "Urban Monkey Warfare"


Tuesday, November 23

Even Ron Artest Misses Hockey

         You call that a fight?

                           This is a fight.

[Listening to: Nothingface, "Incarnadine"


Monday, November 22

Salamano's Spaniel

For a variety of little reasons I haven't had the chance to meet with either of my Lucys for almost two weeks now. It's been kinda strange not having their hourly injections into my stream of consciousness, but at the same time it's been kinda nice not having to worry how each session is going to go.

For better or worse, I've been kinda sailing my own ship lately. And while I certainly haven't found Shangri La, it's not like my boat has been really sinking so much either, you know?

              The weird thing though
              has been the dreams.


For a couple of nights now I've been having these repeated visions of being in group therapy sessions with various fictional characters from the books that I've read over the past year.

I've never really taken part in anything like that before in my life; so I'm not really sure where it's all coming from. In fact, most of my notions about group therapy come from probably two of the worst possible authorities on the subject out there -- Network Television and Chuck Palahniuk.

But night after night that's where I am. Sitting in plastic chairs arranged in a circle with Gatsbys and Survivors and Strangers. Complaining about the coffee and hoarding the doughnuts. The faces keep changing, but the premise is always the same. We're all there to talk about one thing, only to find out that we're being treated for something else.

          Last night I caught Meursault rolling his eyes.

Mostly we just vent our frustrations and talk about the week. The things we wanted to have happen, and the things that fell short. But last Friday we all ganged up and attacked the therapist. Two nights ago we all ended up sleeping together.

             I have no idea what it means.

But the strangest part is how I've come to look forward to it. I don't often have recurring dreams (at least not ones that I can remember), so I suppose that has something to do with it -- but it's like I'm lying down at night in anticipation of what I'm going to see. Like I'm tuning into some trashy soap opera or cheesy reality show

                  ...Wondering what's going to happen next.

[Listening to: Deep Inner Voices, "Winter Winds"


Sunday, November 21

LBD

I don't have a little black dress
or a special pair of shoes

   No. I don't
      ...yes I do

No bottom lip thing to speak of
No arms or eyes of blue

      Not when I really could use them
      Never when I'm alone with you

[Listening to: Crossfade, "Cold"


Friday, November 19

Mansion World

GONZO: As your attorney, I advise you to tell me where you put the goddamn mescaline.
DUKE: Maybe we should take it easy tonight.
GONZO: Right. Let's find a good seafood restaurant and eat some red salmon fish tacos.

        I feel a powerful lust for red salmon fish tacos...
I have no idea how the idea got into my head, but I'm totally jonesing for a fish taco from Cabo's right now.

Cabo's is this tiny dive bar hiding in the back corner of a run-down strip mall off Apalachee Parkway in Talahassee. My sister Ebony worked there for a spell, but I actually got hooked on their food back in the days when I worked for big blue. The guys in the office liked to have their ten-martini lunches out there -- which wasn't much fun to be around, but was a great way to score a free meal.

A Cabo's fish taco is this thing that starts out with the physiology of a normal taco, but then gets mutated into something much bigger and more sinister. They'd bring it to you on a plate and you'd see the fish, the spices, and the salsa -- but the tortilla was nowhere to be found (or at least, not until you'd eaten everything it was buried under). I think they simmered crack cocaine into the sauce somewhere, because once you ordered it you never wanted anything else on the menu ever again.

And here I am, 300 miles and an already-spent paycheck away from tasting one and I can't get the thought out of my head.

         Where does that come from?
         And why am I thinking about it now?


I don't know, I kinda feel like Freud in "Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure," explaining the significance of the corndog that he bought in the foodcourt of the San Diemas mall. I mean, there doesn't always have to be a deeper meaning to things... Maybe I'm thinking about fish tacos from Cabo's because they used to taste so good. Or maybe it's 10 'til 1 on a Friday afternoon and I'm just really fucking hungry, you know?

But I can't help but wonder about it. These long-ago memories, these tiny snippets; all viewed through a patched together television frame from Beyond Thunderdome. How do they find their way back to the surface? Why does my mouth water for a past so far gone?

The connections I hold with Tallahassee and my years there are different. They're not places, meals, or events... my memories of Tallahassee are people. The Andys and the Justins. The Cearas and the "Priscillas." My naked neighbor and the crew at Ruby's. The Tribes, the Arms, and Rick. And Rick,

         ...and Rick.

Tallahassee is where I first met Kim. Tallahassee was where we stayed up late to watch monstervision. Tallahassee was where we would grocery shop at three in the morning. Tallahassee was where we danced to P-Funk all night long. Tallahassee was where we used to be when it was halftime at the FSU games. Tallahassee is where we fell in love.

               ...God, What I wouldn't do for a fish taco right now.

[Listening to: Deadsy, "She Likes Big Words"


Wednesday, November 17

Crystalline Green

Half awake eyes and a shiverkiss smile. We come not to praise Caesar Romero, but to ignore his films as the potential grows towards kinetic, the words are left unsaid, and a stare holds the key to what once seemed like an almost forgotten forever.

              Facts are simple and facts are straight

This is what I want. But off in the ether Aimee Mann is singing in my ear. Fading out slowly 'til Tuesday is just a few hours old -- telling me these things that I've already come to know. That no road is ever truly straight. That no angles can exist within a circle. That clarity is the key. Clarity is the goal. Clarity is the lie.

              Facts are lazy and facts are late

It's not the struggle to break from the bottle; it's what to do with the wineglass at the wedding. The water bottle at the bar. The cigarette on the cold day. The skipped workout before Thanksgiving. The Cheshire smiles in the moon...

              Facts all come with points of view

Of course this is the way things are happening. Of course everything seems to remind. Of course this is when. Of course the streetlights are flashing. Of course the rain is clouding the windscreen. Of course the pages aren't marked.

              Facts don't do what I want them to...

That's the way things have always been. It's just that I couldn't see it.

Didn't see it.
...didn't want to see it.


But I see it now. As clear as Fenimore Cooper and Michael Mann. History spun into fiction idealized and burned onto celluloid. I see it for what it is. I see it, and I'm staring.

                         I'm staring at you.

[Listening to: Goldfrapp, "Hairy Trees"


Monday, November 15

Relecture Du Survivant

Starting with chapter forty-seven; beginning at the end.

I can't tell you how many times I've re-read this book. How many times it's seemed the most obvious choice for me to have by my side. It's my favorite of the eight, the one that I keep coming back to. The title that I can visit again and again without feeling a fade, losing the connection, or knowing the ending.

But the strange thing is that whenever I read this, it becomes immediately clear that I've forgotten the way the book begins. Every time I find myself a few chapters in, it feels like I've never seen these words before in my life.

         Like it's different and new,
         even though it's exactly the same.


I understand why it happens, because the things I remember about this book, the things that stay with me are the things that happen later on. That even as much as I'm enjoying the beginning (..again), the situations that come up down the line will (as they always have in the past) somehow wash over the opening moments. It's not a bad thing - I mean, that's what happens most of the time. First chapters are all setup - they introduce characters and suspend your disbelief. They open the door and pull you inside. Opening chapters seem almost forgettable just by their nature.

And yet this is a book that I know. Characters I've already met. Here is a house that I've lived in before, a bed that I've slept in as my own. And yet here I am -- infatuated all over again. Stirring clouds into my coffee as if it were the first time I'd ever tasted it.

      ...How could I have forgotten this feeling?

Strangest of all, though -- is this question that keeps asking over and over in my mind. The one I can't answer, the one I may never know for sure...

                     Does this book remember who I am?

[Listening to: DJ Format, "We Know Something You Don't Know"]


Friday, November 12

The End is Extremely F**king Nigh

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[Listening to: The Cramps, "Goo Goo Muck"]


Damnesty International

I've got that friggin U2 iPod song stuck in my head.

         Somebody get over here and stab me
         in the eye with a fork RIGHT NOW.


[Listening to: Every CD I have with me


Sloane Peterson

I had this whole plan of things to do yesterday. This list of items that I could check off and look upon afterwards with my most convincing Stephen Covey grin and know that in accomplishing these goals and sharpening my own saw, I gave myself the freedom to do the things I really wanted to do. Anyone seeing that look on my face would instantly understand my mastery of each of the 7 habits -- so much so that they would take a moment to jot it down in the margin of their own dayminders and look back on it whenever their own personal sense of organization and order was threatened by the twists and turns of this unpredictable and unplanned world.

         I only got two things done.
         ...maybe three


Things happen. Rain falls. My day off changed completely almost as quickly as I had come up with my mental list of things to do. Instead of running all over town, I ended up spending time on the couch, watching movies, and laughing. The insurance bill still managed to get paid, and I found the time to get the missing turkey feather out to the daycare center, but all of my other hopeful advances were washed away in the foam of incoming waves as they pushed and then pulled back out to sea.

I don't regret a moment. And in the end, all of those put-off things could easily wait for later. But it's odd how my mind has been kinda folding it over today; the way things happen and the way things leave me feeling afterwards.

What's changed,
what needs to change,
and what may never change


                  It's an interesting stroke of color
                  across this otherwise paint-by-number canvas


[Listening to: Bearsuit, "Itsuko Got Married"]


Sunday, November 7

Everybody Hates a Tourist

The moment in the kitchen, and that moment in the car.

Memories hidden inside rediscoveries; a fire I wondered if I'd ever be able to spark again. It's here and then it's gone -- and the spaces inbetween are making me crazier than you'll ever know.

I have to be careful what I say. I have to be mindful of what I fear.

        The taste of an orange juice drinking straw
        and the smile thats always given you away.


It's like I'm unable to fall asleep in hopes of hearing your footsteps coming up the hall. It's like I'm waking up flushed time and time again at the touch of your skin in my dreams.

             Does the warmth stay with you?

                         ...Because it's staying with me.

[Listening to: William Shatner, "Common People"]


Friday, November 5

Super Cyber Clones Don't Care

When republicans gloat, it makes me want Jello. But for whatever reason I've never taken the time or expense needed to adequately update my Dead Kennedy's collection past it's original cassette tape stage.

So I find myself digging in closets, looking through old boxes and car armrests, sifting through faded labels and cracked plastic boxes, trying to remember which mixtape was the one that has "Soup is Good Food" on it. It was the first one you made for me, the one with all the Social Distortion "Mommy's Little Monster" songs on it, I know -- but over the years I'd played it so many times that the sound was starting to fade, and I had to dub it over onto something else.

             But was it the red BaSF
             or the clear Memorex?


My guy lost. I voted with conviction, be we came up short. I always feared it could happen, but it's frustrating all the same. Frustrating in the way that the people who seemed to be the most screwed didn't show up to put a stop to it (or worse, voted to keep bending over and taking it). Frustrating in the way that so many of the voters for the winner seem to treating it like a football score, or some videogame victory.

But it's over, and we move on. Meet the new boss, same as the old boss, and tomorrow's another day. You shouldn't stop trying to be a good person just because the white people you work with feel an utter need to remind you on a daily basis just how wrong the rest of the country thinks you are... right?

Besides, what I'm most angry with is the Democratic party itself. It's kinda depressing to know that we can't figure out how to agree on anything. It's a bit of a letdown to know that large groups of intelligent and motivated people can't come to a consensus on how to tie a shoe

                especially when the other guy
                was holding his finger in
                the middle of the knot.



[Listening to: Dead Kennedys, "Kinky Sex Makes the World Go Round"]


Wednesday, November 3

Hey That's Your Name, Dude!



[Listening to: Deep Inner Voices, "Sleuth (I'm onto you)"


Zoey Why

It seems like I'm sleeping less and less these days. Night after night, just laying there, aimless yet awake. I wander the channels, thumb through the pages, searching for something without knowing what it is. The hours seem to stretch by without me noticing anymore, and what was once a lazy stretch past twelve turned into a regular visit to two in the morning now seems lost somewhere between three and four-thirty.

       There is nothing on.
       There is no one there.

planet earth is blue and there's nothing I can do...


So I sit there, watching it flash by.

Replaying the days, the silences, the good times, and the mistakes. Running past stairwells and birthdays, road trips and holidays. I think about the things unsaid, the fighting that got us nowhere, and the things we used to do with your digital camera.

Reliving my life
Unable to sleep


           Because I desperately need to know how it ends.

[Listening to: Flaw, "One More Time"]


Tuesday, November 2

Falling Down

Today during a class break I went to a bookstore. Mainly I was just looking for some time to kill; mostly I just wanted to be somewhere else but the workplace for a little while.

But while I was walking the shelves looking for things on my list and yet at the same time not really looking for anything at all, I came to a sudden, sobering realization:

                    David Sedaris is a dipshit.

I've spent far too much time thinking about what makes his memories so damn valid and meaningful. I've spent far too many moments in my life wondering what people see in his writing. I've spent far too much energy trying to suppress homicidal thoughts towards coworkers I've had over the past 5 years who just couldn't wait to hear him speak on NPR.

So in a fit of righteous vengence, I sought out and found the first book I could with Jerry Stahl's name on the spine so that I could read it in the little cafe on the other side of the store in plain view of anyone who might be thumbing through the pages of a Bridget Jones novel.

Amidst the puppy calendars and the martini-glass-on-the-cover blankbooks, I was reading heroin addiction and desperation sex. Before long I found myself looking through the shelves for Susie Bright, Alison Tyler, and Hunter S.

It didn't matter that I had most of these same books at home, or that no one at all found indignation in my actions. It was about staking a claim to myself. About planting my own flag into the ugly Borders carpet, making sure anyone bored enough to look my way would have to know that I belong there too.

            ...This is what I did today.

More and more it's where I'm at lately. Picking and picking on this scab on my arm, trying to figure out where I fit anymore. Looking for a place to stand out, feeling somehow isolated in my inability to somehow exist and yet single myself apart from crowds of people my own age.

Shining in the dark, singing in the car. Needing ...connection.

                      Falling Down.

[Listening to: The Cure, "Let's Go to Bed"]


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