I had lunch today with the teacher who gave me my first of many "F" grades I got in school. This was in the fifth grade. We didn't talk about that, but we both remember it.
It is weird that this old guy and I are friends now. I've never told him how much that F made me feel like I was a failure. In reality, that F should have been the flag that got my parents attention that I was not doing well in my person, not that I was having a hard time with schoolwork.
I don't have hard feelings about it because I earned that F and it was my teacher's job to report that I was not doing any work. That should have been enough for grownups to ask why. It wasn't. Neither were the subsequent years up to my senior year in high school. Ultimately, it was I who decided to get good enough grades, go to summer and night school, to graduate, barely.
My parents did ask, but it was more like "Why can't you do better? You are smart." It didn't seem like there was an understanding that more was going on than just sloughing off school work. So, I eventually just hid my report cards and shut myself off from them.
It seems so obvious to me that if I have a child who tests high, gets top grades, then all of a sudden gets .08 GPAs that there is something seriously a matter with my child other than they got a bad grade. Too many times we treat symptoms, rather than the cause. Are we afraid of truth? I think that to truly love someone means to embrace the possibility of dealing with the fact that we are the cause and that we are the ones failing. I love my parents. I've learned a lot of things from their mistakes. The irony is that I probably won't have any children to practice what I've learned on. That's a possibility that troubles me.
I have two ideas for Christian themed restaurants: "Chuck E. Jesus'" and "Macaroni and Jesus". The Chuck E. Jesus would have a robot manger band with a 12 disciple backing choir. The other, well, anything with macaroni in it is good for the soul. Just think, I risk my eternal salvation just to bring you such silly things. I hope you are amused to death.
My truck, Clyde, caught on fire Saturday. I was welding some stress cracks on the firewall when the heat set the paint on the interior on fire. Luckily, I had my brother standing by with a fire extinguisher and a wet towel. We put the fire out before anything was irreparably damaged. It's just that my truck smells like, as Ralph Wiggam would put it, burning. Wheee. I love working on my truck.
After getting a closer look at my truck, I noticed that it was a woman trapped in a man truck body. From now on my truck will be known as "Claudette". Yes, my truck is a sassy black lady. On second thought, I think I will just stick with Clyde.
I haven't cut my hair yet since it started growing back after having chemo. It is getting long. Today, at a local church, I actually had a person ask me if I was trying to prove a point by growing my hair long. I didn't take this in a bad way at all. I just said asked them what kind of hairstyle Jesus would have. I got nothing back from them. Irritating this person made me feel warm inside. It was nice to feel the spirit of the Lord at church.
I'm going to be performing at a Christmas concert that a friend is putting on. I have no idea what in the hell I will be doing because it is a Christmas theme and I don't do that kind of thing. Any time we set on a day to get together and reherse, something comes up with one of us and it never happens. I'm not a big performing type. If I do play, I can't suck. Everything about this is leading to suck because nobody can get their heads out of their asses and come to an agreement on stuff. I'm thinking of just showing up with my biggest amp and turning it up to "ungodly loud" and play my favorite tune: "The Party's Over, Retards". Yeah, it was one of Judy Garland's classics you've never heard of before.
Anybody think that Blueray is going to make real life look too "lo-fi"? I'm sorry, but the digital medium are just Legos compared to real life's molecules. One of the attractive qualities of the old and outdated Technicolor system in film was that the colors tended to bleed into each other. This was something that was flawed, but it had style in its imperfection. Real life is also flawed. Borders and boundries are blurry. There exists more fuzzy softness than crispness. That said, I just saw Hellboy II on Blueray and it was kewl.
I will close this post with one of my favorite lyrics from a rock song: I wish I was your mother.
You know the types. The wanna be or retired authority figures. They could pick any other color or any other kind of big ass car, but no, they have to make like they are the feds, fuzz, or government official. These douches like to go around and yell at people, telling them what they can or can't do. There are the ones who take things a step further by putting spotlights on their Vic.
I've had a run in lately with one of these asshole "WCV" driving douches. I'm not going to go into details, but he yelled at me--frothing mad--about something that he thought I was doing at work wasn't legal. This mid-50s town sheriff wannabe about ran me over, he coming to a screeching stop on the wrong side of the road, then started showing off his likeness to a braying jackass by opening his mouth. He was so livid that he started taking off his seat belt and grabbing the door handle, like he was going to have to take out the trash, yep. After "setting me straight" I called my work's head of security, who is a real cop, and he confirmed that I was right and that douche was wrong. He also told me to call him immediately if this asshole harassed me again. It's always good to have a cop on your side.
Share with me your "White Crown Victoria" douche bag stories. They don't have to drive a WCV, per se, just fit the general profile.
I just bought some nut files on Ebay. This is so you can cut and shape your nuts. I am so excited now. I'm going to lock myself in my room and go to work on my nuts until I am satisfied with the results.
I am particularly fond of bone nuts. Nothing like a good bone, I always say. It is important, though, to make sure that when you work your nuts to have a precise spacing, or else things get misaligned and will cause bad vibrations. It helps to use a nut clamp or vise in order to get a better handle on your work.
It is important to make sure that the slot is clean before you place your nut into it. There might be all kinds of debris and residue in there. Heck, one could even find that the slot has a bunch of old glue caked in there. Clean that sucker out!
Once you have satisfactorily worked your nuts, the results will be pleasing. Remember, exercise patience and use good technique--these are key.
During high school I worked at McDonald's. Only one Gruntonian knows the full extent of my weirdness during that time of my life. There was a group of guys that I worked with that called me "Pagan" or "Matt the Pagan". It started with the way that I made hamburgers on occasion. When I wanted to curse a patron, I made what I called a "Satan Burger". This burger was made with a beef patty with an upsidedown pentagram branded in the meat with a heated up spatula. I would get all giddy thinking what kind of horror would fill a customer's mind when they opened up their burger to see the mark.
I need to explain that as a teenager I was fascinated with occult symbols. I guess it was my way of rebelling against the seemingly strict religious community I was brought up in at the time. One summer, having to take a couple of courses so I could move on to high school, a fellow "failure" brought a book of witchcraft. I thought this book was fairly harmless, but started chanting the spells out loud by the candy machines where we would hang out at. This freaked out some of the students, but especially our teacher.
There was a bit of urban myth that there were some community members and teachers who were witches and satan worshippers. The stories were that they would steal your pets and sacrifice them up in the mountains. I spent many hours wondering who was a witch and where up in our foothills they would practice their rituals.
In the neighboring town to where I lived there was a tall stone cross hidden in a wooded ravine.This is a photograph of the cross. I understand that some dickhead blew it up with a pipe bomb. The cross was always a thing of much speculation and myth. The stories of what would happen there on a full moon or other eventful nights were rather wild. There were tales of hooded figures and animal sacrifice going on there. The few times I made the journey I only found one dead cat and I really couldn't say that it was sacrificed or just placed there to freak the shit out of us meddling kids.
There was only one time that I did come across a grizzly scene of animal sacrifice, or more likely, torture. A friend of mine and I were riding motorcycles in the hills above his house. We were always a bit curious about dead things and if we caught a whiff of death when up in the mountains we'd investigate and try to find the offender. We found Percival's dead horse he shot to put it out of its misery (the hoof tore from its leg after a fall). That was grotesque and about the worst smell I've ever had to intake. That day of riding, however, we caught a whiff of death and what we found was truly disturbing. We got off the bikes and walked through a thicket of oak brush. There, hanging from a tree, was a black dog skinned from the neck down, with its entrails laid down into a pattern of several symbols. I have no idea what must have taken place. All I can think of is the poor dog that was tortured to death. This is about the moment where those spooky fantasies of mine of witchcraft and the occult ended, and the reality of disturbed individuals began its torment upon my awareness.
I occasionally wonder if I have rubbed shoulders in that small town with the individual(s) who committed that horrible act. I guess I will never know.
"Tryouts For the Human Race". (Ron & Russell Mael, Giorgio Moroder)
We're just a gleam in lover's eyes, steam on sweaty bodies in the night One of us might make it through, the rest will disappear like dew Pressure building, gettin' hot, give it, give it, give it all you got When that love explosion comes, my, oh my, we want to be someone
CHORUS Tryouts for the human race, from Burlington to Bonn Ah, we are a quarter billion strong Tryouts for the human race, from twilight time 'til dawn We just want to be someone
We're the future and the past, we're the only way you're gonna last We're just pawns in a funny game, tiny actors in the oldest play It's an angry sea we face, just to get the chance to join the race Gotta make it, gotta try, gotta get the chance to live and die
We must, we must, we must leave from here We must, we must, we must, we must leave from here Gotta make our play, gotta get away Gotta make our play, gotta get away Gotta make our play, gotta get away Gotta make our play Let us out of here, let us out of here, let us out of here
We just want to feel the sun and be your little daughter or your son We're just words that lovers use, words that light that automatic fuse When that love explosion comes, my, oh my, we want to be someone CHORUS
One very married lady and I talking about stuff. Nothing sexual. It's just us talking about our lives and where we think things are going for the both of us. I did date this girl before I got sick, before she got married. I guess my mind still has some leftovers to deal with. They have been nice dreams, though. I wonder what her dreams have been about the past couple of nights.
That's what my title would have been for the old Fritz Lang silent film Metropolis. I watched that film tonight and just loved the evil inventor's name. I guess syphilis was fairly prevalent back then.
It's been awhile since I saw one of my sisters. On Saturday I dropped off a TV set to her apartment and was amazed. I thought she was somebody else. She has really been working out a lot lately. She has always been beautiful. Now she is smokin'. If she already didn't have a serious boyfriend I would be out picking fights with would be suitors. She is proof that hitting your forties does not mean having to look like your parents did at that age.
I finally got the wiring done on the remodel guitar project of mine (Strat). I had to come up with my own schematic to make all the mods work, so it took a long time. Now I can finish the guitar build (Telecaster) that I was bragging about during the summer. Sometimes the way I work frustrates people because I will start one project only to start three others and not finish the first one until last. I have figured out that the first project is what I need to motivate me to create and usually will not get completed until it has served me--to get other things accomplished. What I have also learned is that building a guitar does not save you any money, but you get to build it your way.
I have dug up my old 286 computer that runs a DOS operating system. I want to get all of my old school projects and papers off of that computer, as well as some personal writing projects of mine. I have found that the only DOS that I remember is how to shut the computer down. This has been really frustrating as well as a little embarrasing that I still have this ancient device. I might as well be telling you stories of my UNIVAC and punch cards. At least I didn't say that it was a Commodore 64.
It's up to you, Gruntonians, to determine who will win in the TIGF Battle Royale: Fops vs. Dandies vs. Macoronis!!!
First up: The Fops! This fastidious soul aspires to aristocracy but gets hung up along the way by his obsession with all things fancy. Always hilarious is the Fop's affected manner, while a bit more restrained than the Macaroni, it still screams "Hello Sailor!" The Fops' secret weapon is ambition to get to the top at all costs.
Second: The Dandies! The Dandies are a bit more sophisticated and masculine to that of the Fop or Macaroni and much less deranged, not to mention their place in literature, ahem, Oscar Wilde y'all. But there are still odd trappings that a dandy will get himself into--olde time contests of physical prowess and Balloon races around the world and shit. Surely, they are at an advantage with their more streamlined fashions and top hats, what with all that weapons storage space.
Last, but not least: The Macaronis! The Macaronis are by far the most hedonistic of all TIGF creatures. Sort of like a glammed up Greek philosophers, but without the drag coefficient of hi IQs, the Macaronis will out eat, out drink, and out gay you to death. Beware of the outrageousness.
So, who will it be? How will this fight go? You decide!
I will give the first person who can figure out what the title means a prize.
There was this guy today who wanted to show me his "invention" for clearing out a street gutter drain. It was just two PVC pipe lengths taped together that he used to ram down the drain. I told him that he just found them and that he didn't invent them, "pipes have already been invented, dude, a long freakin' time ago". You would have thought that I had told him that his mother sucks cocks in hell or something. Realizing that this guy's self esteem was so invested in this technological breakthrough of his, I decided to turn things around and give him credit for his genius. This only made things worse and funnier at the same time. He then proceeded to tell more people about his invention and it really hasn't helped his reputation at work. I've decided that I would be the one to name his new invention: "Quinn's Trusty Ramrod". My world is only further enriched by knowing this fur-bearing, halfwit man child.
I have a friend who has a bunch of Canadian cousins that like to make fun of him being American. They say stuff like, imitating his American accent, "Hey, my name is Jason and I'm an American, dude." Apparently, that is hilarious. I love my Canadians, so what I am about to say is only in friendship and good times. How do you get one hundred Canadians out of a swimming pool? You say, "Hey, Canadians! Get out of the pool!" Apparently, that too is hilarious.
Just this Sunday, I was eating some peanut butter cups while laying down on the couch watching TV. After awhile, I go to the terlet. (Like the pronunciation?) When I get done cleaning up shop, I look in the mirror and see a big, brown streak across my cheek and neck. I panicked for a moment thinking that I had just given myself some kind of botched "Dirty Sanchez" and then I remembered the peanut butter cups and figured that I must have had some on my hands and rubbed it on. Besides, I checked it out. It totally did not taste like doodoo feces.
If you didn't vote in the big election, then you are kind of a loser. What are you going to do to make it up to the rest of us? I think brownies would be nice.
I love the desert. I was born in Arizona and frequented the Superstitions with my dad quite often. I love the red rock sandstone deserts and those filled with the Joshua Tree. Dunes are nice as well. The steppe is often a place where most people would rather not go. But I find things there where most do not.
I'm right at home in this photo. I'm near a place where the U.S. stores its vast supply of old chemical weapons and destroyed at a facility about twenty miles south. This mountain was scaled in my truck via an old trail that goes straight up the shoulder. It was a bit unsettling seeing nothing that would stop your fall if you were to roll or have a brake failure on the way down. This was my second time up this mountain. The first time I did it my passenger side exhaust got torn off. Bailing wire was my rescue. No breakdowns this time.
Just out of frame to the left is a high peak. It is just under twelve thousand feet. It has two narrows up its canyon. They are the gates to an alpine scenery that betrays the desert climate below. Wildlife thrives on both sides of this yin and yang. Men and mayhem don't do so bad here either.
The world needs places where a man can step outside of culture and society by living out his most destructive needs. The desert has been such a place throughout time. I always wonder when I will find a dead body out in places like this. It is a bit macabre to think this way. But I do not shrink at myself and my innermost wanderings. There has to be a letting of those things.