There are so many intelligent and articulate people covering the hard-hitting
issues in our country these days, that I felt it was my duty to cover the
rather inconsequential bullshit that tends to make up the vast majority of
our lives. Actually, I'll just be griping a lot which, if you weren't aware,
doubles as a synonym for complaining, and as a descriptor for
a sharp pain in the bowels.

Monday, December 31, 2012

Snappy New Year's

Well, I haven't a surfeit of time for writing here, but that's just as well as people put together a whole mess of aggravating gobbledygook this time of year in an effort to, well, I'm not sure what really. I guess they want people to think they're good in making some sort of resolution, or want people to think they're profound or who knows the hell. It's really not a bad thing to want to improve yourself and arbitrarily selecting the day someone arbitrarily selected, since the day you start making the change is pretty arbitrary no matter what, is fine. It's the just the usual case of social media throwing it further in one's face.

Then enters the conundrum of addressing this as I'm doing and not being guilty of some of this as well as inevitably in reference I may incur some sort of differentiation of language. As can be seen, I'm not closing 2012 in any special manner, just incurring the usual circular reasoning loops.

On a related note, there's got to be some sort of (I am loving this phrase today it seems) tracking for the inverse relationship between internet posting and positive mental health. Prolific can be a problem.

Speaking of problems, I have a slight one with the new Bruno Mars song sounds exactly like a mash-up of The Police's "Roxanne" and some other Police song. Lazy research by me, yes, but lazy song creating by Mars' crew. That shit sounds exactly like a Police song. That's why you just change the station or turn the radio off. 

Considering that this blog gets a reasonable number of hits from folks googling how "deaf people are jerks/assholes," I figure I may as well recap my encounter with a blind man the other day. I'd just finished running and it was a little before eight in the morning. He said something, and I noted his stick so I went over to see if he needed help. When I asked, he responded in Spanish, so I said, "No habla Espanol," because I don't (the grammar on that is probably even wrong). To this he responded sarcastically "Parlez-vous Francais?" In spite of his sarcasm, I answered honestly with "un peu," because I do speak a little French.

This left him thoroughly confused and eventually I directed him to the bus he wished to take. I'd have walked him there and let him hold my hand if he hadn't been a jerk to me. "I ask three or four people for help, you are the first to help me," he said, but he didn't sound very grateful. He struggled mightily to interpret the direction I gave him which were only as complex as "walk one block straight, the same direction you've been walking. Then you'll cross one intersection to get the bus going west, which is to the left." He just started walking left, and I re-explained multiple times. 

Given his initial savvy joke, I didn't really know what to make of his struggles to understand my directions as far as seriousness goes. But it did make me not want to be helpful sometimes. 

Some are blind, some are deaf, some it's literal, some just to metaphorical effect. Who cares, get drunk, spend time with some friends and family. Happy New Year.  

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Rudolpho: The Red-nosed One

Well I'd fully intended to post this on Christmas Eve, or Christmas day even but life got the best of me, as life has a way of doing.

But I didn't want the length of December to pass without giving a quick shout out to the horrendous modern commercialization of Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer. I mean hell, this was already commercial, it's not like Rudolph is a real effing reindeer, but this stuff well, as much as I dislike it, I also really love it. So without further ado please queue up Destiny's Child, animated, slutting up Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer.

A true highlight is when Beyoncé sings, "Rudolph we love you boy!" But don't sleep on the snowman host getting down in the recording booth.

And then there's old pal Regis Philbin giving his rendition, with cameo (and near guest star status) from Donald Trump. Keep your eyes peeled for his breakdancing moves, and his signature catchphrase, all the way at the end.

Ah, Rudolph with your nose so bright, who'll you do a collab with tonight?

Credit to my girlfriend for owning the DVD of the Rudolph television production on which these, let's call them interesting, renditions were housed.

Incidentally, how many children get named Rudolph each year?

Belated wishing of happiness (British) and merriness (American) on your Christmas.

And to all a goodnight.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Cracking Nuts

Last week, for the first time in years, I had the pleasure to take in a performance of The Nutcracker, all thanks to the somewhat inebriated whim of a good friend. As children, my mother took us several years running and I always enjoyed it. Even the many of us who have not seen a performance or specifically sought out its soundtrack are familiar with the tunes of Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky. You can find them in Tetris and all manner of holiday ads.

But in all of my viewings, this was the first in which my brain had the focus on simply the movements of each of the cast members of the show. While my original intentions in creating this blog were to gripe about nonsense and worthless frustrations I experience in life, sometimes serious, and sometimes tongue inserted into the cheek, at times I must, even here, lay down my solid appreciation for how awesome something is. In day-to-day life I do this all the time but, again, not really my goal in writing in here.

That worthless aside aside, you should get thee to a performance of The Nutcracker, as I imagine even the worst could still be one of the finest things you see. I can't possibly know that of course, but it seems reasonable given the general reverence held towards the classic. Sure, people will bastardize anything, but it's a bit harder to do when you have to get a theater space and two hours of performance time, let alone practice. Still, even if a ramshackle band gathered together dancing like asshats to a CD of the recordings I could imagine it still be decent, because Tchaikovsky (no coincidence his initials are P.I.T.) is such a badass.

Putting aside that worthless aside, as well, and what I wanted to get at is how it's really a true joy to watch the delicate, effortless, and beauteous movements of bodies well-trained in the art of ballet.

So when you've got a chance, take a crack at seeing The Nutcracker, and soak in a little fine holiday tradition.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Word to Microsoft

Long ago my father would bring an Apple Macintosh SE all-in-one computer home on the weekends. This was a treat, for it meant I could write silly stories and have the computer voice read them back to me. But Apple's were in the extreme minority then. As time wore on, Apple neared extinction, but Microsoft bailed them out, and Steve Jobs returned to the helm. Slowly (or not so) and surely, Apple has taken command of the device market by building not necessarily the best products, but the simplest and most aesthetically pleasing.

Apple became the cool thing. If you spend a good deal of time in coffee shops, most people are rocking out on a Mac. If you work at or visit a start-up, most people are rocking out on a Mac. What I wonder, though, is when the revolution might turn the other way. Even if not winning the market share, perhaps Microsoft returns to prominence by being archaic and uncool. You know, what wasn't cool, is cool, because it's not cool.

Yes, Microsoft:

Apple Store? Oh no, it's Microsoft...

seems to be emulating Apple:

Thanks for adding the logo, so I know what store it is.

There are further examples that I will neglect, including the Windows OS being modeled on the Mac OS (guess I glossed that one). But they can't be Apple...or can they? Will the hipster go PC? Will it be PC (politically correct) or PC (pretty cool) to have a PC (personal computer)? By the way, a Mac is a PC, as you may well know, before it dropped into colloquialism as being associated with Windows-based machines. Is Microsoft going to go hard?

When computer's were simpler, they created the game I so long loved, Tetris. I still love it, it's just been a while. The news articles published when that game was released are fantastic, and include quotes like this:

Tetris is so simple to learn that you'll know all the rules five minutes after opening the box. But it's so intriguing to play that once you've started you'll be spending many hours in front of the computer screen-so many that you'll begin to wonder if Tetrisisn't really part of a diabolical plot hatched in the Evil Empire to lower worker productivity in the United States.

Well, anyway, that's that.

Friday, November 30, 2012

Commutable Diseases

Every morning and afternoon I step on the train I risk becoming an excessively grumpy customer as I am confronted by the excessive rudeness of a large number of humans. Like the guy this morning who really needed his personal space to very slowly read the top stories in his reader on his iPhone. Yes, I'm belittling his reading pace. He also seemed grumbly about my being as close as I was. Well, see my friend, in the morning at standard commuting hours (let's call them 7:30-9:30am) you run the risk of public transit being crowded. Hey, I don't love it, hence much of my griping in this here blog, but it would be better if people stuck to certain rules of politeness.

Someone is exiting the train, and you are blocking the doorway. You step off the train and get back on. I know it's a mad rush, and others are trying to storm on from the new stop, but you'll get back on. And then you want to keep that space right where you were, except that the new folks need to get in there, and that requires getting around you. Simple concept, but complicated enough it would seem that walking and train riding could become Olympic events.

Anyway, since I've written probably those exact paragraphs above probably a half-dozen times in here, let's talk about Taylor Swift and have me point out that we should stop talking about Taylor Swift, the old Catch-22. Try as I might to avoid her though, I'm sure to see her peddling goods at Walgreen's, further proof that for however much I understand marketing, I'll never approve — unlike Ms. Swift, who I guess approves all sorts of Walgreen's goodies.

But hey, she's got a formula, it works. I did find it amusing when my girlfriend and I saw her on the cover of one of those big time magazines at the grocery checkout and there was a headline about her dating a Kennedy, which she's already no longer doing. It's sad that a) I know any of this and b) this magazine's December issue was prepared apparently so far in advance that this story that must have been written ages ago would just now be seeing the light of day.

As for the light of day, there are all kinds of nice lights these days, as it is holiday season. I can be a bit of a Christmas grumpus, but the lights look damn nice, and I think they warm the soul through the otherwise bleak winter (which technically doesn't even start for 3 weeks). Some pleasantness must be there in the hibernatory months. What's that, hibernatory not a word? Oh well, if I just keep typing hibernatory, perhaps some bloke'll toss it into the dictionary. Maybe I can be the top hit when people search "hibernatory."

See you in December.

Thursday, November 29, 2012


As in where has it gone. Blah blah blah, perception of the passage of time, but really, this month has come and gone in a hurry, which only means 2012 is damn near coming to a close and —if you believe some prognosticators — the whole world with it.

When I consider my little self-appointed quota of monthly postings, I know I'm not alone in setting arbitrary volumes of content for which there is little in the way of quality payoff. This oatmeal comic sums up the freelancers conundrum/my own struggles with content production damn well.

Speaking of oatmeal, now that the weather's turned chilly (although it was quite warm today), it means I'm getting down with the warm breakfast cereal Wilford Brimley was spokesperson for when he wasn't talking about Diabeetus.

I was crossing through a crosswalk today and a lady in a Range Rover very nearly just kept on going through the space my body was considering occupying. I gave her a long stare, and once she felt my gaze, she displayed shock and mouthed "sorry." And that's all it takes for me to no longer be frustrated with someone nearly running me down. We all make mistakes and have lapses in attentiveness. If we're lucky, nothing really bad results, but either way we just have to remember to be accountable.

That preachy paragraph aside, belated joyous Thanksgiving times bestowed upon all thee.

That's enough out of me for now, this turkey's cooked.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Ma[i]licious Intent

For some reason when I choose to ship packages, I opt for the US Postal service. I'm not exactly sure why since I can ship for essentially the same cost at FedEx and UPS, and the dudes at the UPS store by me, in particular, are awesome. And of the three FedEx locations I've been to in my time in the city of wind, every employee has been a delight.

In general the USPS gets low reviews, but this location really takes it to a new level. It may even trump my local branch. I should know better by now, but even after being forced to buy an entire roll of tape just to use the tiniest amount (I get that they can't just give away packing tape completely free or some might taken advantage — which is why I asked if I could pay for just a small amount; this might even boost their revenues and would certainly reduce frustrations), I went right on rolling through with the rest of my transaction as the woman I dealt with treated me as if people generally did not ship packages from the post office. I should have taken her hint. Three weeks after my last attempt, I'd had my package returned to sender and they told me I'd have to wait in a long line to send again and pay, again, for shipping. If it can go all the way to its intended location and back to me for one fee, it seems that it can go back out for no additional cost. Still, at least my life frustrations are this simple.

For me, along with realizing I shouldn't use the post office for these types of things, it's about trying to get at just what it is that makes everyone who works there so ornery. I don't think it's a chicken or egg scenario. Are people annoyed to wait in long lines at the post office? Surely. But the fact that virtually everyone working there is rude, and treats all standard requests as if they are extremely unusual and unique special cases, blows my mind. Perhaps they are trying to discourage anyone from going there so they can just sit around. I don't really know what it is. Perhaps the next time I can just ask why they are so rude and ornery. Even when I hate waiting in line, I'm always calm and polite when I get there. Hell, once you arrive they'll generally tell you you're missing some integral information or form necessary to complete your transaction and they'll usually push your right back to the back of the line. It's not even simply my personal experience, it's observing all of the other transactions ahead of me.

The post office doesn't have to be Hell, but I can't see this trend being anything but perpetuated. Shitty experience and shitty delivery? Seems to be an unfortunate package deal.

As is generally the case when I write any of this stuff out, the moment the post is finished it drives home how little it matters. Boy I hope I find something interesting to blog about next time.

Stay fresh.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Chan[n]el No. 5

A little bit of
Brad Pitt
on a sign, a little bit of
at one time, a giant effing bus ad's what we need. Want to buy some Chanel? Plant the seed.

I'd pass the Knightley face above, daily (not Daley, I get off before that) on my walk from the train, and then on my walk to the train, and perhaps on my walk to and from seeking out some lunch. Recently she was replaced by old Brad up there, whose quizzical, far-off look can likely be accounted for by his confusion that a giant perfume bottle is super-imposed in front of him. "Do dudes even wear this?" Brad Pitt doesn't care. Hollywood, a couple of roles in some nutter films (Seven, 12 Monkeys), Gwyneth's head in a box only to discover you're still dating in real life, and then a female Jon Voight eventually on the scene, with a gaggle of children, adoptive and biological. Life's different for you, wear what you like.

In simply googling those images, there was a swath of articles (really, I chose swath?) describing these ads. People are confused they say, but it's attracting attention. It certainly is. It's just crazy enough to work. My fragrance use won't go beyond whatever scent my Old Spice deodorant happens to be, but this may very well chan[n]el in some new sales.

Welcome to November folks. Seven weeks left in the world.*

*some say

Wednesday, October 31, 2012


And goodbye as well. With Halloween 2012 drawing to a close, I'm also looking to fill my four-post-per-month quota. I'm weakly making it onto the weekly. I should be calling it Balloween since I'm feeling progressively more and more like balls.

Today I didn't get round to dressing up, but I was rocking a crew-neck t-shirt, which isn't that odd except that I'm so accustomed to the v-neck in the last few years that I actually feel a touch out of sorts in a crew-neck. Like my neck is confined or something stupid like that. Of course strangers don't know that I nearly exclusively wear v-necks (no, seriously, I cut my crew-necks into v-necks a lot of the time), so as usual, all in the brain. The moral of the story is that there's very little story here.

Smoking line, the cut-off line for cigarettes, so you can't. smoke. here. Each morning I walk by the Merchandise Mart and I'm fascinated by the smoking line that is painted onto the sidewalk. Fascinated because it exists, but also fascinated because it is obeyed. The idea is that the entryway is not flooded with smoke, and it's a nice concept, but given the wind in Chicago, the efficacy of the smoking line is questionable. That, and it's also really intriguing to me to see an arbitrarily painted line observed, one that adheres to the 15 foot rule. Why fifteen feet? Why not.

As you can see, I'm not too into linking the disparate parts of this post to one another. What I am into, is wondering if Skidz brand clothing will return. Peep these shots below. Those aren't costumes, those are fashion!

Merry go round indeed! They're not skidding! Or are they?

This girl right here!

Happy Halloween folks.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

I Don't Work Here

Quite frequently in my life I'll be in a place of business and someone will make an inquiry of me that is the sort of thing you might ask an employee of that place of business. This is a roundabout and dumbass way of saying that people tend to think I work at most stores I'm in, regardless of attire. I certainly don't dress to code at any of these places. One of the earliest I can remember was coming off some temp office work during the summer before starting college and rolling into Bed, Bath, and Beyond to get some bedsheets before leaving for school in a day or two. I informed the woman who asked me where something was (that's right, I don't remember this detail just over eleven years later) that I in fact didn't work at the store (I was wearing a button-up and slacks — side note, people apparently hate the term slacks), and then directed her to where the item in question was. How can I remember that I directed her correctly but not remember the item? I just can.

In the years since, I've sold tennis racquets, shoes, advised a few folks on whether or not to buy certain articles of clothing, and I suppose that's about it. Actually, in a few recent instances I've dispensed doughnut purchase suggestions but then, for reasons even I can't fathom, I already wrote an entire (and long) post about that.

When I'm not mistaken for an employee, I can often be found giving directions, taking pictures of you when you're on vacation, or aggressively being hounded by canvassers (I include homeless people in this designation). Something about my general demeanor must make all of these things happen. The thing is I really don't mind most of these interactions because I enjoy helping people, I just can't figure out what it is that suggests I am either an employee or an expert on directions.

At any rate, I've a feeling I've blogged about this nonsense before (I've really got to get in the habit of checking that beforehand) but if you haven'r read it, it's new to you.

Next time you need help shopping, your photo taken, or directions, well, I'm bound to be in the vicinity.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Renesaince Rambling

I was on some company website the other day and I don't know how the hell I ended up there in the first place, but one thing I always check out is the team page. It's tough to write a bio about yourself or have one written about you, but either way it tells you a bit about how a company wants to portray themselves. And I'll say that generally I don't like it. On the bigger corporate side, these bios tend to be formally written, dry, a touch boring, but just contain the facts. This is as expected for what they want to portray. It's the smaller places though, the newly-launched tech and media ventures, or the ad/design shops looking to be edgy/cool that I tend to take the most issue with. I get that even when trying to avoid tooting your own horn, you still have to make note of some accomplishments so that someone who's never heard of you can get an idea of, well, your accomplishments. But too much of it seems to come from the same school of what's cool like, perhaps they are trying too hard.

The reason I bring it up is that one of the team members lists himself as a "Renesaince [sic] man." Apparently spelling is not part of his Renaissance. 

In more boring news, I'd also seen that someone on LinkedIn who was in my network had fallen into my 2nd tier. As this individual was in the 500+ connections realm, I thought it was pretty interesting that they would specifically disconnect from me. Perhaps it was in response to my not accepting what I presume was his wife's invitation to connect, though I'd never met her in real life. The thing is, I'm not a prolific LinkedIn user, and all of the people I'm connected to are people I know or have met in real life. And not every person I know in real life and is on LinkedIn is someone I am connected to there.

It just goes to show that peoples' online behaviors are weird. But then, people are weird. Especially in the sense that anything outside of our own prescribed systems is alien and difficult to understand.

Alas, Internet, I must give you a rest. Until tomorrow then...

Monday, October 8, 2012


You ever dislodge a booger and have it go up your nose? It's really disconcerting for some reason even though it's comprised of just those things that just left there anyway.

I was thinking about sinus infections because I get them every fall, and because my girlfriend's sinuses are always crap and I thought I'd make a hyperlink to someone signing the word "us." But in rudimentary googling, I returned no results. What a sad thought that in ASL, there is no us. Bad enough that it's already co-opted for A/S/L.

Mostly in fall I dream of cross country and the pleasant experience of running over hill and dale. Even the scent of port-o-john chemical leads to fond reminiscence. Of course it's not long then until it will be nut-bitingly cold. 

In other running news, the Chicago Marathon was yesterday. I was too lazy to get around to the course this year, but I did at least catch the last few miles on my computer. The NBC live webcast was rather awful, with cutaways every few minutes to interview god-knows-who or lend another update to the weather. I understand that not everyone happens to be a running enthusiast and they are trying to draw in viewers, but that is not the way to do it, especially not in the closing minutes of the race.

At any rate, watching these guys (Kebede and Lilesa), drugs or not, click off miles in the 4:40s and still be able to surge and drop into the 4:30s boggles my mind. And that they battled each other. It was an actual race. Multiple surges in races of 5k or less took their toll on me, though I suppose in the longer race there are more opportunities for moves and time to counter them. I can only imagine the horrible death of covering an early move and paying for it for 7, 9, 12, 15 miles.

One of the stranger aspects of the marathon to me is that you eat and drink during it (technically you're not quite eating in a lot of these instances). One year perhaps I'll get injuries figured out and be able to train to run a marathon in a time I'd consider reasonable. Maybe this will even be the city for it.

In political news, for the opening presidential debate it might be worth taking Matt Taibbi's word for it. 

Sunday, September 30, 2012


Ah, the meaning of life. When you spend so much time looking for it, there's a good chance you might show yourself the meaning of being lonely. The idea that we're not alone in the universe, to me, also often comes down to what we define as our universe. It's semantic, it's aggravating, and there's a good chance it could drive you insane. But that's on the supposition that you're sane to begin with. And who gets to decide that is just one more can of worms. Why worms were canned and all that I'm not exactly sure of either, but when you open up that can, be prepared to go fishing. Does that mean vegetarians need not worry?

Okay, that's a touch abstract, and a touch not sensical, but I had to put something together in order to hit my four post monthly quota.

Have I actually said anything, though? And by what means was it dictated and arrived upon within the silly mass of what we call neurons and synapses and other scientific terms I'm blanking on. Hell, scientific is a term, and term is a term. But let's have this get terminal. No, not terminal, since I'm not really adept at programming, terminal, as in rather than this being the place where a flight takes off, or the descriptor for a bad illness except isn't every illness terminal because even if it doesn't off you it at least runs its course, does it not?

But this post has run its course. I like running courses.

Until October then...

Friday, September 28, 2012

The Wheel Deal

I was going to maybe go off on a little tire-ade about cyclists, hence the title, but I realized I did that within the last six weeks or so and as much as I repeat myself, that's a little recent even for me. Even if it wasn't, I'm not sure it was a wheely good idea anyway.

So I've come round to another topic, namely doughnuts. Not many abide by that classic (and more descriptive) spelling, and I'm often tempted to ignore it in favor of the colloquialism that is donut, but I'm going to draw an arbitrary distinction that seems to have been adopted anyway: doughnut=high-end, donut=more mass-produced. That is not to say I prefer doughnut over donut (though I certainly do on a number of occasions), merely that this is the distinction.

Like many, I'd long enjoyed the donut, and there was a time friends and I would wait until 2am for the fresh batch to roll out at a local Dunkin' in order to grab strawberry frosted and other treats. A Dunkin Donut fresh out of the oven? Pretty darn good. But most don't bake on site, and so you get less-than-fresh donuts. This is a recipe for disappointment. The other popular entrant is Krispy Kreme, which I find to be a touch too sweet, but I still can appreciate a soft glazed. The thing is, I prefer cake donuts. Or, to be fair, probably cake doughnuts. That hasn't stopped me from consuming many a Jewel offering  or, further back, Price Chopper, but given a choice I'll up the cost.

In Chicago, there seem to be two choices for high-end doughnuts, though I haven't exactly done a lot of research. They are Glazed and Infused and The Doughnut Vault. I will say, that my preference is for the former, judging only the glazed cake doughnut. Glazed's offering has the distinction of actually tasting of buttermilk, which I happen to enjoy. Doughnut Vault tastes, to me, more like a pancake. But wait, is buttermilk not often a type of pancake? This is correct, and yet because the Glazed offering tastes less sweet, I prefer it.

But from that exciting topic, I was struck by the interesting social phenomena unfolding around me as I waited for a doughnut this morning, in line at DV. Waiting for a doughnut was really foolish enough, but soaking in the ambience was good for me. Plus they brew the Metropolis Spice Island well. As the wait is long, it would be quite natural to perhaps strike up conversation with others around you but, perhaps by virtue of the types of people a boutique doughnut window attracts, none of these interactions came off as natural. The bungling man five people ahead of me who wanted to get cred for identifying the music playing and then giving credit to the women working there, as if his opinion should matter. Just take your doughnuts my friend, and be on your way. Or the girl in front of me who tried so to give off an insouciant cool. Says the asshole who just typed "cred."

Rather than hate these people as I might have done in the past — or simply on a different day — I feel bad for them. I would hope they could traverse the world without great nervousness and fear, especially when undergoing what should be the pleasurable act of doughnut purchase (although I suppose consumption trumps purchase for pleasure). Were that is was so easy.

I was just thinking how there used to be at least a touch more humor imbued in this here old blog. Note to self to bring a bit of that back.

Where has September gone? I simply donut know...

Monday, September 17, 2012

Style With a Smile

There exist bathrooms that have a urinal and a traditional toilet. They are men's restrooms and they lock and they are intended for use by only one person at a time. And yet, in spite of this, it isn't uncommon to see pee splashed across the seat of the toilet. I think this says a lot about human behavior. Maybe peeing in urinals just isn't some dudes' style.

Style is an unusual thing. As with many other things in life, there is blatant borrowing, if not complete emulation, but there is also much that is subconsciously adopted. One such element for me is wearing different colors of the same shoe. I've been doing this since about 2008 off and on, and while it primarily applied to my running shoes, it happens that I wear my running shoes sometimes when not running. But that wasn't the first time I'd seen this. Nike offered two-tone spikes in the late 90s, called the Jasari, a similar, but not identical concept.

Les Goblet went one further in the fall of 1998, wearing two different colors of Adidas trainers. Les Goblet is not his real name, but Les Goblet is a real person. Speaking to his shoes, I believe one was red, and one was blue. I can't recall the name of the shoe, rare for me, but I do remember that a teammate of mine had the same shoe in yellow. Why do I remember Les Goblet's name? Was it his unremarkable personal best in the 800m of something near two-minutes, his I'm-not-trying-but-I'm-totally-trying-at-trying-not-to-try archetype (is that even broad enough to be an archetype), or his shoes? I think it was none of them. I just happen to remember a lot of insignificant details. As for insignificant details I don't think Les Goblet would remember me. That's okay, I was shit at running then, and I was a sophomore while he was a senior at a nearby school.

But Les' shoes. Les is more sometimes. I thought that was a cool idea. I wanted to emulate it, and if I were ever asked, I like to think I would have given credit to Les, even though the name would mean nothing to most. But it took me a decade to do it, and when folks ask now, I never bring up Les, even though I'm known to be odd enough that inclusion of this largely superfluous detail might be expected.

In my years of doing this, I've received plenty of looks, commentary, and feedback, and strangely it has all been positive. Just as strangely I've not seen anyone else emulate it, but I've heard it's out there, as one my coworkers said recently he saw a kid wearing mismatched Jordan's in a neighborhood you would expect to see this kind of behavior. My neighborhood is also one where you would expect to see this kind of behavior. And it would be in the spirit of both hoods to want to stop doing something because someone else started.

That's dumb.  

It's too bad that the Emperor's new damn clothes has taught us nothing, and we can't live free of the perception of idiots. But then, it's my perception that they're idiots. And since this is growing tangential and at the risk of lines not directly touching, let's just agree not to pee on toilet seats and remember that if anyone says they're the authority on something, they aren't.

Anyway, I wonder what kind of shoes Les is wearing these days.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Reigning in the Rain

Ah, the relationship with rain. I actually like when it rains, because you need a good gloomy day now and then. And, providing it's not too chilly, little is more invigorating than a run in the rain. But when you need to get somewhere and all around you have umbrellas, well, I've spoken of umbrella etiquette before. Without entirely rehashing my gripes, I'll just say that umbrella use is a great microcosm into the selfishness of an individual. Don't want to get wet and/or have important things you don't want to get wet? I totally understand. But others don't really want to either, nor do they want to be decapitated by your unwieldy wielding of an umbrella.

But that's small fry and, rain aside, for however sunny life seemed in Chicago on Family Matters, the fact of the matter is, these days — as a friend put it when I shared the numbers — Carl Winslow is not doing his job. It's really not anything new, which makes it more disturbing. Yes, there are surges in the murder rate, but there are consistently a lot of murders in this city. Is it because they're on the South Side that they get less coverage? Wouldn't that be a shocker...

Since I don't worry about transitions, how about Andy Roddick retiring? This is not a subtle distraction from bigger issues, it's blatant. But Roddick, I have to say I enjoyed press conferences like this one after Roger Federer annihilated him at the 2007 Australian Open. And I liked to watch the guy play. It's true, he wasn't on the level of Federer and then Nadal and Djokovic. Tennis, in this era, is unusual, in that those are the three guys winning everything [that matters — Slams]. And rarely are they being eliminated from tournaments by anyone other than each other. And yet, even though I never really thought he'd do it, I would root for Roddick to win tournaments after that 2003 US Open.

Who can say why? Sports and other allegiances are an odd — and fickle — thing. It's hard enough to pass judgment on people you actually know, but then toss it through the lens of athletes or other celebrities who we get to know through tabloids and [sometimes] legitimate news sources. "Gee, that guy seems like an asshole." Or, "Seems like the kind of guy I'd want to grab a beer with." Or even, "I hate you, but goddammit do I respect you."

And hell, I remember sitting in my sister's apartment, begging the fifth set to go to Roddick at the 2009 Wimbledon final. This one was different as I always thought he'd need luck, or Federer to be off his game to win. But that day he outplayed Federer. That day I really thought he might win. It's a testament to Federer that he hung on anyway. I feel as if, in America, we root for the underdog, but we also want to be the dominant force. It's at odds with itself. And because Roddick rose to the top, ever so briefly, and then hung around, well, I think it made me like him more. It hardly effects my life whether he won or lost a match, and yet it affected it here and there.

Party on Roddick.

Finally, a couple of quick reminders: don't be afraid of the weird hairs growing on your back. This doesn't have to be awkward backhair if you just own it. And yes, sometimes deaf people are jerks. Sometimes, deaf people are assholes. Why am I saying this? Well, I've slipped through the rankings for these search terms, so I'm just doing some low-grade SEO.

SEO you later.

Friday, August 31, 2012

Flying With Sprinkles

The event that links to this title took place some weeks back now, but it reoccurred to me after viewing the sprinkles in question in my kitchen cabinet. You see, as I stepped on a flight from New York (LaGuardia, specifically, and I add these details lest the consideration be greater security in a city such as this) I placed my bag through the x-ray machine on the conveyor belt and then opted for a pat down because I like strangely gloved human contact with strangers, bit which I mean I don't want any more radiation coursing through my glowing veins.

As I stood awaiting my bags, an officer asked who the proprietor of a blue duffel-like bag was, and I noted it was I. He asked if I had any bottles in my bag and I responded that there were not, just some stroopwafel, an electric shaver, a rooster cutting board, deodorant, contact solution, and, oh yes, some sprinkles. They removed the sprinkles and my bag got the all clear. I don't know why these sprinkles would appear in bottle form through an x-ray machine (they come in a box), nor what about their constitution suggestions explosive or questionable properties, but I'm a little skeptical about eating them, even if my sister did bring me them all the way from the land of nether.

In more recent dopey news, a man took a picture of me with his iPad yesterday on the El. Not that it's a big deal so much as it's incredibly obvious when one does this. "Oh hey I'm just holding up my iPad for a second and pointing it towards you before I put it away. Was I taking a picture? No, come on, that's crazy, who would do that to a complete stranger standing on a not even moderately-packed train. You're not going to bother repeating this story are you? That would be more embarrassing for you than it would me."

Let's close August out with something fun. Too lazy to see if there is already a tumblr with captioned stock photos, I've put together the first entry based on searching servers on These are some great shots. And I'm sharing my search string because all I actually searched for was "server images." But since it's the internet, they need to autofilter for nudity. How presumptuous of them that I didn't want naked servers! The string :[]=Photography&exclude_nudity=true&nudity_checkbox_exists=1&entered_not_these_words_field=

And some great photos.
When the yellow cord connects and you press the "u" key we automatically become stylish and get ties.  Dude, it's kind of warm in this room. Shouldn't have pressed "u."

This server is protected by a fucking ninja. Or a gay cat-burglar ballerina...aka American Ninja.

Thankfully, god has helped serve the servers.

Oh man, this guy totally pitched a tent in the server room...hehehe.

That seems like too much already. Have a nice three-day weekend those of you that get it. And remember, Labor Day are just as good as other puns, there's no need for a vacation.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Serenity Sans Cyclists

Ah the bicycle, a wonderful invention, but then enters the rider of the bicycle. And because these riders of bicycles are regular people, not all of them are quite what I'm looking for in terms of etiquette and understanding. There are those who use the bicycle as tool of transport, and there are those who go a step further and enter the realm of cyclist. Within the realm of cyclist there is quite the range, from the geared-out guys and gals on their pricey road bikes, to the stereotypical hipster on his or her fixie. It doesn't matter what they look like though, it's the attitude. 

I run. At times this means sharing space occupied by pedestrians, by skateboarders and rollerbladers, folks on Segways (can the riders of Segways be called segues?), cars and — yes — cyclists. The sidewalk, the road, steps, grass, railroad tracks, shared lakefront paths. I'm naming but a few; the important part is the sharing.

The cyclist has angered me for some time, even before one ran into my leg and did [un]reasonable damage to my body. Before that event, on that very path (and hell I probably mention it there in that linked post), cyclists so frequently ride not just quickly, but closely. I do that inanimate objects. I hug the lane next to a parked car, shimmy between a parking box, an outdoor bench, in the name of not slowing down some sure, but also in the name of not obstructing anyone else.

Often I run in the bike lane in my neighborhood, but what abuts the bike lane is parking space. I'm always tensed, awaiting a comment so I can point out the distinction. Or note that cyclists sometimes ride two abreast and my running certainly occupied no more space than would this second cyclist. But the quickest point is always, "Ever ride your bike on a sidewalk?" This messes with shit far more than me running in the bike lane. Further, since many ignore other traffic rules —like, for instance, red lights — you'll just have to deal with my running opposite you in your lane. 

After all, there was a time when there was no bike lane...

Well there was plenty of other nonsense I might have mentioned but how about I let you know that loves my page. How do I know? They emailed me you silly geese! I get that messages like that one are sent in bulk, but I think it's funny considering my profile is quite barely developed. Why did AOL buy this up for $10 million again? I guess because that's like $10 for me, and I do buy some silly shit for that price.

In the meantime, I'll be jamming to this until I make myself sick, just like I did before...and I surely will do again. 

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Olympic Fallout

Three weeks of Olympics just doesn't cut it. Despite my skepticism and cynicism about drug-use in all sports, it's still a joy to watch most every event at the Olympics.

I also must note that, when I was bitching about Snowboarding being in the Winter Olympics and the Summer Olympics not having things like BMX (which I don't think it should), I turned on the TV to see BMX racing. Shows how much I know.

Inevitably some dopers are caught, and some are not, and some come up with the most fantastic excuses. Just a little EPO splashing up in the rainwater! There are plenty of rather hilarious excuses that athletes have been used over the years, and you can find several lists of these. One of my favorites was another distance runner, the German Dieter Baumann who claimed someone spiked his toothpaste

The thing is, I am sure there are some cases of sophisticated sabotage, but when they come at the same time as significant boosts in performance? Also, I don't exactly treat my body as a temple (depending on your definition of worship), but I'm pretty aware of what goes in there. Yeah, sure, maybe I don't know quite what Chicken McNuggets are made of, but close enough...Ignorance is diabetes and obesity...

Then there is the case of a certain Judo athlete testing positive for marijuana and being kicked out of the games. I guess Phelps never tested positive though there were shots of an enormous bong rip. Seems like some uneven jud[o]iciousness if you ask me. Such is life.

Before I roll on out of here, a quick shout out to my local post office. It's always pretty slow and interesting, not to mention aggravating, in there, but at least it's a shared misery. There's plenty more I could say, but I'd these Yelp reviews get it down pretty good. 

Au revoir.

Monday, August 6, 2012


As I've been tuning into the Olympics, I've been struck by the often ugly uniforms and that almost everyone on the track seems to be wearing the same yellow Nike spikes (granted the spike plates may be different, but from afar all of those uppers look the same). A better blogger might link a photo, but if you're watching the games, you've seen what I'm talking about. With the massive sponsorship by major corporations that takes place, I would think there would be a good deal of unique expression but perhaps because they are major players it results in the opposite: a merit[less]tocracy. The Men's 400m final will also be Merritt-less and, in fact, American-less, unusual for an event we generally dominate.

The Olympics was originally founded on amateurism, and certainly these days a great many of the athletes that participate, or certainly those that excel, are anything but. I am okay with this I think because it really does allow athletes to rise to another level of achievement. My gripe, however, is with the specialization of some of the events, and how it really bars many individuals, and whole countries even, from excelling at certain sports. Take swimming. You aren't gaining access to a high quality pool for hours a day if you're poor. This goes for tennis too, and anything equestrian. Now it's true that if a country focuses on a great many sports, the talent pool is diminished somewhat, but this is inevitable.

What Michael Phelps does and has done in the pool has been pretty amazing. He seems like a dick and I get annoyed when they flash the camera to his mother in the stands — I find her incredibly annoying. But I can separate performance from my perceived thoughts, even if I've heard second-hand that he's a dick and thus my thoughts there might move closer to verification than perception. I won't even make the point that I was starting too that, if many more people swam, things might get a lot more interesting than one guy asserting such heavy dominance. Instead, I'd just like TV coverage to focus a little more on some other sports, or some other athletes.

I get it, I'm watching TV in America, and the tendency is to show the events we excel at. Since the Olympics is meant to be a global event, why not show some other events we're unfamiliar with that could be interesting to watch? I'll even settle for not having Shaun White be interviewed during the men's trampoline event in gymnastics. Why is a completely niche performer (even by winter sport standards adding snowboarding was a stretch...on balance shouldn't skateboarding and BMX be in the Summer Olympics? EDIT: shortly after posting this, I saw BMX racing on TV) commenting on something he has no idea about? He even had the audacity to suggest that what they were doing was easier, because they could tuck their bodies tighter and thus maintain higher speed. I mean, they're doing something almost completely different, so please don't tell me that what you do is supposed to be harder or better...the men's trampoline champion is probably not going to jump on a snowboard and outperform Shaun White, but nor is Shaun White going to get on a trampoline and come anywhere close to their achievement.

Does anyone, even if they give a shit about Olympic Snowboarding, want to hear some dude who's good at it's uninformed opinion on a very tangentially related sport? Is that individual even tuned in to men's trampoline? Bob Costas tried to bring it in by asking if he'd done gymnastics when he was younger and that was as close as it got.

When there are a great number of commentators both knowledgeable and passionate about specific sports, why must we recycle the same heads that seem to have no specific knowledge about any of these events?

But it's cool, because amidst it all, just by sheer volume of coverage, great moments like Nathan Adrian's sincere excitement at victory and contagious joy trump moments like McKayla Maroney's Gold Medalist snub.

Also, if you can't recognize or acknowledge me in a bar when I am standing right next to you after we have met for some two or more hours, there's no need to send me an invitation to connect on LinkedIn. This is more than a suggestion. It is funny though. Hehe.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

The Color of Monet...

would be a great title for a book about the relationship of art and value or, well, maybe it wouldn't.

See, I was hoping to have something humorous to put down in here, but when you try to force out some funny, it rarely works. 

Instead I'll just talk about how I've decided I'll always opt for the pat down if my only other option at airport security is the x-ray machine. I've only once had to go through that thing, but I was decided that yesterday would not be my second time. Having had enough radiation in one lifetime from imaging for all manner of injury, and with these machines not all that tested, I'd rather have a gloved hand once-over. They offered to do it in a private room if I was uncomfortable having it done in front of people, but somehow I feel a private airport pat-down would prove more to be far more uncomfortable.

Workers in McCarran Airport were also highly supportive of my consistently dopy style of mixing coloring on pairs of shoes. I wonder if this would be as well received if I did not appear to be a bit younger than I really am.

In the opposite vein of reception, on a brief jaunt last week some dude from a car yelled that I "looked foolish." With no noted response — I neither turned head, broke stride, or anything else — he repeated himself. I continue not to understand the threat of a relatively skinny guy running down the street, even if he's got no shirt on. And hell, foolish? Do any of the assclowns that yell these things really think it's both my first run and first run in such attire? Dream on, right Steve? The real question: why are all these people so insecure?

I wonder if old Gore Vidal was insecure...

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Welcome to the Neighborhood

Seeing as how I have lived in the same neighborhood for nearing the start of my third year, one can forget about what might seem a touch ridiculous in other parts. Case in point: I left my apartment this evening carrying a handful of grapes — a bunch actually. This seemed perfectly normal as I wanted a snack for while I walked but then, as I sighted the man with a parrot on his shoulder around the corner, I realized that eating a bunch of grapes while you walk may, in fact, be vaguely outside the norm. Still, I would expect it lies closer to normal than having a parrot on your shoulder.

I've noted before that any sort of eating while one walks is considered rather strange behavior. Most people, it seems, sit down to eat. Me though, unless I have plans to dine with someone, I tend to feel that eating is more of an act to fill a void in energy before going to the next activity. I enjoy eating, I really do but, considering I'm often running late, if I can combine any activities, I'm doing myself a big favor.

Moving on in the extremely linear fashion that I tend to adopt in here, I want to take the time to post this video of Beth Stelling from last night's Conan O'Brien show. Beth is a person I got to know a little in my forays into comedy in Chicago and she's a real delight. Aside from actually being funny, she's also really nice and pleasant to spend time — even the limited time I've spent — with. Since I'm generally griping about nonsense on here, I want to be sure I'm balancing it with representing when good people do things well. So congrats to Beth Stelling, I'll always root more for the nice folks.

Speaking of nice folks, on the way to work this morning, a little girl in the backseat of a Volvo station wagon stared at me as I waited to cross the street so I gave her a big smile and a thumbs up. I realized this was not the most standard of responses, but it was enough for the kid. Thanks kid, for being one of those simple restorative dailies. I pulled the same on a little girl in a stroller walking home. For whatever reason, when kids smile at me, I get more excited than when adults to. I think their innocence translates to a genuine sense that I might not be an asshole. But also their innocence might make their judgment foolhardy!

Shit, other than that, I'm getting excited for the Olympics to kick off. I admit, I'd be happier if no one were on drugs, but there are so many weird chemicals in everything we eat and touch that many of us are turning out unwitting mutants...I just wish that for me it meant I was impervious to injury instead of being impervious to being impervious to injury!

Play on playas.

Friday, July 20, 2012


Mathematically speaking, it's the average. Middle-school speaking, it's just how a lot of kids act. Pop musically, it's a Taylor Swift song. And right as I was planning this, that song was being played by the company with whom our own shares an office. Now I dig that song, but that won't prevent me taking digs at it here. Away we go.

Swift is assailing a bullying type in the song, for his physical and verbal abuse. But the problem I have is that she tells him how one day she (or the song's protagonist) will be living in a big old city, and all that individual will be is mean. Living in a city that I enjoy, I still resent the notion that living in the city makes you any better. It's precisely the kind of city superiority that makes people loathe cities from time-to-tim. How exactly does living in a big old city equate to a superior stance to being mean? The protagonist can still be a bitch/asshole, but because they will be living in a big ole city it's okay? People are people. Some are great, some are shit, some are in between. Some of them live in cities, and some of them live elsewhere.

I was also thinking that this song reeks of spite. But I realize that some day has not arrived yet for the protagonist, so perhaps this song is a little ditty or extended mantra that the protagonist tells themself internally to deal with the constant bullying they receive. Plus, there is the acknowledgement of the cycle of abuse, and it closes with "why you gotta be so mean," so there's that nice return, after all the hatred aimed at the "mean" person, to an attempt to be sympathetic.

As this shows, you can [over]analyze anything you like, but here's a lengthy analysis (and not of a Taylor Swift song) that I think is worth the read. It's about the role of the political comic or perhaps a better distillation is to say what the relationship of comedy to politics is versus what it could and maybe should be.

Also, a quick open letter to my legs and feet: please resume somewhat standard operation. I mean, I just want to run like maybe forty or fifty or more miles a week, and that's pretty normal right?

When I don't run, I'm liable to be more mean (jerk), when really I want to be mean (average) for what mean means for my body (running forty-plus miles at a variety of paces).

Oh, and have a nice weekend.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012


Circular is really the more apt terminology to describe how my brain works. But in my circular thought, meandering, and thus circuitousness, can result. It means I often end up responding to my initial question with the question of whether I should have asked my question in the first place.

And while circular reasoning is incredibly aggravating much of the time, because it's how my brain operates naturally, it is where it derives great humor. I can't escape the circular in the literal either, as I spent so many days running around a track and, even when not, every path leads you back to your abode, until you move. So what we're dealing with is a series of circles, sometimes concentric, sometimes merely intersecting and, at the least getting a touch of tangential interaction.

Not long ago I was watching Real Genius, one of my favorite films of all time. The basic plot (of course you could click that link) is Val Kilmer and some other young tech whiz types create a laser that is meant, unbeknownst to them, to allow the government to kill single targets. Released in 1985, Star Wars (not the Lucas flick), was sort of heavy on the brain. And twenty-seven years later, we're damn close to what we were afraid of. Folks aren't being vaporized by a laser, but the drones we're using are damn close. Now this does somewhat violate the tenets of this blog by talking about relevant information, but sometimes it's just not to be avoided. Strangely enough, the author of that article refers to the moral imperative, which Val Kilmer uses in a rather different context in the film referenced. Morality is a tough one.

I'm glad to have to concern myself with whether I should withhold a tip from a shitty server at a restaurant and not whether I should authorize the, well, it has to be called murder pretty much, of dangerous individuals. It's not quite the pre-crime of Minority Report, but you can see where these concepts come from. Far out is a little too close sometimes.

One day, because everyone eats chemicals, the body will reject organic items...or organic will be impossible to exist.

Or when everyone has come over on an organic mandate, chemicals will replace organic as the high-end, sought after, trendy foods.

And the stupid haircuts of myself and others will be so popular that the subversives will have a coif akin to the button-ups of old. But it's hard to escape being buttoned down...

When you ask for a revolution, remember that you end up at the same starting point.

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Things That Begin With 'R'

Running is certainly at the top of this list for my dumbass as I've been an over-enthused enthusiast of the activity and the sport pretty much since taking it up as a freshman in high school. I'm bizarrely competitive about a great number of things, but it wasn't until I started running for sport that I remembered how competitive I'd been about it anyway. Schoolyard races, gym class tests, blowing by someone in this or that sport, I prided myself on being faster than people expected.

Of course, as is the way for many people, the body can't always keep up with the brain, and even vice versa. And so many an injury has sidelined me over the years but, if anything, my love of running has only increased. And so then we have the Olympic Trials, where there is a rare showcase of track (and field) on a broader scale. People start to give a shit about swimming, and diving and, well, as ridiculous as some of the events can seem (I apologize racewalk, but I'll never understand thee), it's a thrill for me to watch people perform at such high levels in all of these things. But it's not just that that I often ask of an athlete, I often want to see them do it gracefully. It's the added confirmation that they were meant to do this, that we were as a whole too, but them more than others.

And then you have the sprint for news, in that photo set a race to get the word out on the passage of new health care initiatives, an initiative that one politician deemed on par with 9/11. I suppose you do dial that in an emergency, and now you might have health services to back you up...

But as a runner you can do weird things. Yesterday, for instance, I ran to my old apartment to pick up some cooking supplies and then ran back. Given traffic at that hour, my desire to get in a mile or two (and also that I don't drive), this made perfect sense. But a shirtless man in small red shorts toting a plastic grocer's bag looks a bit odd I'm going to guess.

Aside from that sort of thing, which I don't expect most folks do, it isn't just me being 'weird' on the running front. I know from speaking with others of the running ilk. I analyze every runner I see out running. Is he/she fast? How/why do they run like that? And then I wonder what I look like out there, form aside from general asshattery of appearance (as I have detailed in her before, at least vaguely, and perhaps even form as well). Of course, it doesn't matter if you can't run. When someone suggests you take up something other than running, and the thought is, "there is only running" a la Highlander, that's when you're in the leagues of the runner. I get grumpy about other runners when I can't run, but all that is is a petty jealousy. You think they can't possibly enjoy it as much as you, and perhaps don't deserve, all of which is bullshit.

So you take what you can get.

Another r-word would be rumour, and blogger does not like that I spelled that the old British way. I'm not sure I do either, but a rumour today that can be credited to fact is Ryan Braun's herpes. I can't say that I was too interested, but the topic came up while watching a baseball game and a friend could confirm that his friend had received a text from Mr. Braun advising to get herself tested. Generally that could be the kind of detail to share beforehand. Well, they're herpes now I suppose...

That isn't very many things that begin with 'r' yet but this entry is getting a touch long I'd say. So let's close out by the cheap use of adjective: radness. Imagine my sadness that radness appears not to be a word. Still, I was just peering through this tilt-shift photography post. Plenty of rad things, and why not that?

Tomorrow's July, July! Wherever does the time go?

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

That Song I Was Singing this Morning

Came on in the coffee shop this evening the moment I arrived. It's one of those moments where I didn't think I'd heard the song anywhere before I had it in my brain this morning, but I could be wrong. But whether or not I did, it doesn't change the mildly unusual circumstance of hearing that same tune on entering this establishment, especially since this was an oldie.

But before complete boredom sets in or, rather, to help settle it into a thicker paste, once again the rudeness and ineptitude of walkers begs to be front and center in my life — it boggles my mind. This morning I faced three abreast and brushed my arm against a woman's purse mouthing Are you serious to no one as I walked by. Is it strange that being rude is just about my most hated quality in a human being? I think it's because I find it to be an extension of so many other things, the building block of a butthead or, as I've been calling most people that aggravate me of late: a dingle. Regardless, just one more puzzle piece in my mosaic of misanthropy.

Just now I had my iPod plugged in and attempted to skip tracks by hitting the skip key on my laptop keyboard. That's when you know your brain is firing on all cylinders. I'm glad to have these moments though, lest I ever think myself infallible to idiocy. I believe my specific idiocy makes me acutely adept at spotting it in others.

Other than that, we've got the Olympic Trials a runnin' (and throwin', and jumpin'). I love to view the beauty of motion of so many of these athletes. And sometimes it's nice to see those that do it the ugly way and gut it out. Makes me frisky to be out there and run fast, but that's not always the way.

It's also Euro 2012, so be sure to tune in and get some great haircut ideas.

Note to self: write about something interesting in here.

Monday, June 18, 2012

The Cramps

The Cramps were a band that I knew nothing about save for the fact that one of my middle school classmates was often wearing a shirt sporting their name. Even with the power of the Internet, I never really delved into giving them a listen, and that streak continues since I'm seated in a public place and my headphone jack is broken.

But the real reason I've mentioned cramps is because, of late, it appears I am the number one result for the term "grundle cramp." I thought briefly it might be time to retire from blogging as a result, but due to the manner in which google functions, I believe I must continue to update this thing in order to remain atop the rankings.

Mercifully, long has it been since I have had a grundle cramp. They can be quite terrible indeed. Rather than the painful seizing of a muscle that renders a part of the body near inoperable, this is predominantly a sharp pain, crippling in its own right, as if someone decided to stab you from within the depths of your nether-regions. It's just confounding when it happens because you don't really consider that whatever is in there—probably the pc muscle—is ever even doing all that much. In my limited and yet too vast experience it seems to be brought on by awkward foot planting. Like dropping from a ledge one is hanging on that is just a touch too high. Dehydration is surely a factor as well, as it tends to be in most cramping, but even with proper vitamin volume and hydration, that awkward drop can get the grundle going. As for overworking the grundle, I believe this happens when trying to cut off a urine stream, or other fluid that may be trying to rundown the wee wee.

As that is far more into detail than I really intended to get, let's hope that keeps me atop the grundle cramp leaderboard a little longer and may I not speak of it until it crops up in search terms that land folks at my blog again.

And that's apparently all my brain could put together at this moment. That's the way it is sometimes folks, that's the way it is sometimes. Stay friendly folks, and smile like you mean it.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Diesel Power

As I was leaving work the other day, I had some earbuds mashed in and tunes a-playing. With the death of my iPod Nano some time ago, I've been a lazy loader of tunes on the shuffle I now possess. The effect is that there are not many songs, and the songs on there have been there largely from day one. Because I'll run with the damn thing, it's also populated with tracks I feel like running too. Were you to listen to some of these tracks, this might surprise you. Suffice it to say that, because I like running and music both to a great degree, most people probably wouldn't be running to the tunes I've got loaded.

Blah blah blah and a fiddledy-dee, the reason I bring it up with way too many background details is that one of the few tunes on there is Diesel Power by The Prodigy.

It's on the album that had Smack My Bitch Up and Firestarter and Breathe, but I wonder how many people besides me were down with Diesel Power and Kool Keith's raps. Hell I don't know if I know another Kool Keith song, I just recognize the name due to its alliterative nature.

I'm also really itchy. This is the second time in my life I have experienced this kind of itchiness. Perhaps third, but my brain retains no memory of the chicken pox. I'm calling what I've got the Seven-Year Itch  just because my brain goes with free association. I had no idea before a quick google that it dealt with the urge for infidelity and the title of a Marilyn Monroe film that features her iconic skirt-blowing scene. Roots are cool. I'd like to find the root of this itch, as it's a real bitch.

The point then, is that this temporary itch makes me feel as if I could grasp quite well how this type of thing could drive one insane. 

Before I trundle off to enjoy a delicious Big Flats beer, let's talk about Big Flats beer. I see it at the Walgreen's in a giant array as below, complete with that $2.99 tag.

My first issue with this, is that $2.99 is not that cheap. One can easily grab themselves a thirty of PBR for the equivalent, or cheaper, per can cost. Say what you will about PBR, it's worlds beyond Big Flats. 
Let's examine closer:

It's also listed as a "premium beer," and by no definition of that word does it seem an applicable adjective. Incentivize? Only if the incentive is to convince the consumer not to drink any more beer...But really, it's not even that bad. I'm sure I've had worse. I just don't want people to confuse this with value. I'm all about value. So if you send me free Big Flats beer, I'll make my way through it.

Scratch on folks, scratch on.

Thursday, May 31, 2012

If I May...

say so myself, this is the last of May for 2012 and, if some prognosticators are correct, the last May we may have. Maybe I should cut it out with all the may use. After all, there's no use for mayday on this May Day, though it does happen to be a grey day. About this I don't think there's much more I should say, but I don't know, I just may. Okay.

As is often the case, those really hard-hitting issues that course through my brain have eluded me. And if you think of me discussing hard-hitting issues as anything but sarcasm, then I have deluded you.

Walking etiquette made its way into my last entry, and its back in this exciting follow-up. Today, as I headed through a revolving door (there are a lot of these in Chicago. I think this is for both energy saving and because it's often effing windy, and it is a real struggle to open and close doors if you're in the wrong windstream) on my way to the train, there was a woman toting (no ™) her umbrella in one hand, and a wheeled bag in the other. This left zero hands free, along with perhaps zero brain cells. The result was that she attempted to push on the door with about zero force. Now I'm no physics whiz, but it can take force to get a revolving door moving. And though there was the residual force exerted by the man before her, there is also the drag coefficient of design. So when I stepped in, it was as if the door was not moving and this woman would have been essentially trapped. So I pushed forward, and keep in mind I am not a being of massive strength and so the door began movement again, but not at any great rate. Still, the woman was sluggish, and somehow unaware of the door movement not being magic and so, I am sure, expecting that it would stop to allow for her sluggish exit.

Instead I clipped her Louis Vuitton Bag in the door and she gave me a dirty look. Given that she otherwise would have been essentially trapped within the door, I was hoping to explain this fact to her, but instead I just kicked her in the face, which surprised even me, because though she was not exceedingly tall, I am not very flexible, especially in the groinular region.

The ultimate outcome is that I lied about that last bit, apologized though I'd really done nothing wrong (translation: I'm a bit of a bitch), and hurried onto the train.

And then I ordered a burrito that was like made-to-order Taco Bell. It might sound like a knock, but it's an observation. Now knowing that it would be such a good TB facsimile, my selection of Mountain Dew was an unwitting genius culinary pairing. I do kind of wish it had been Diet Mountain Dew though, because DMD has a nice ring to it. And if you like it, then it should've had a ring to it.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Nursery Rhyme

Walk six abreast you'll get hit in the chest! Depending on your height. This rhyme also works for any number of people because chest and abreast rhyme. What's that? You knew that? Well now you still do! It's pretty routine for me to complain about sidewalk or walkway etiquette but I feel like lately it's gotten even more out of hand. It seems to me quite simple that if a path can accommodate x humans, and x is divided into two groups moving in opposite directions, and you are dealing with x+1, either side must choose to yield a human into the back row. Now, if x is one entire group, and 1 is the sole opposer, it stands that a member of group x should yield, rather than present a crushing mob. Or perhaps, I am crazy.

Lolo Jones' ass has been a popular search term in the last few days, at least to land people at my blog, and it would appear that is because she recently announced that she is a virgin. Normally I'd like some news source or other but today I'm lazy (well, not just today). Of course, a woman announcing her virginity and searching about her ass do not share a direct correlation. I'll leave reader brains to associate how or why this search term might develop. At any rate, I don't know why this sent people to my blog, as I've never blogged about Ms. Jones' ass. Oh well, that is the magic of the internet. So good luck to Ms. Jones at the Olympic Trials and, should she make it, the Olympic Games. Nothing is guaranteed, but I'd like to see her there.

Well now that isn't very much that I've gone and covered here but such can be the way. Have yourselves a glorious Memorial Day weekend folks. I'll be sweating.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Rat Tails...

A woo-ooo. I know that's not the first time I've linked the Duck Tales' theme, and there's a good chance it won't be the last. It's hard to keep track, you know, since life is like a hurricane...

My easily distracted brain just read a post on the facebook proclaiming the summer prediction of the reemergence of the rat tail. As the proprietor of one, I can't disagree and I could also add, "It's already here." I live near a primarily Mexican neighborhood, and it's been popular a while. I mean, I can't recall why I started growing one last year, though it's easy to think of reasons I cut it off. And then, well, why have I regrown it? Why anything, right? Perhaps I had viewed some on my runs out to said neighborhood, and perhaps I'd been watching too many soccer/football highlights. Again, even when common sense finally prevailed (with much goading from my family), it is back. All good, and bad, things, must come to an end, it's a matter of when. Do I blame several upcoming weddings, that now everyone is going to have one, or do I just some being such a self aware dipshit and cut it for a change of pace and the fact that, I may be old enough to know better. I mean, just because you can do something, doesn't mean you should. I mean, I used to rock a side-hawk, but as my buddy Tom pointed out, even Tom Brady can't get away with that.

Far more interesting than this in my estimation, is the homeless approval of well, if not my girlfriend and I as a unit, at least my girlfriend. I can't think of a way to address it without being weird, but I have to say it really means a lot. I mean, these guys aren't walking around asking for cash, or any kind of handout, they're just adding a bit of positive energy into the world. I've had many interactions with the homeless over the years, primarily good I have to say. There's something about it where I just think we get each other — take from that what you will. And call me odd, but when a hobo on the el says to me "she's lovely," that means a lot to me. Just as it did yesterday when one said, "you's lucky, my girl never let's me hold her hand." I guess it just seems honest to me? Makes me think I'm/we're/she's projecting better energy into the world than a rat tail might warrant.

But shit, if you're rockin' a rat tail or whatever the hell you're doing, just be honest about it, because even not being trendy is a trend. Abide by that timeless [to me] Apple Jack's tagline and eat what you like.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012


Tell me what you want, what you really really want...I wanna, I wanna, I wanna really explain these song lyrics for a second. Now I used to jam out to this Spice Girls hit when I was in the eighth grade aka 1996 and, well into '97. But one thing I never really processed was the lyrics. Aside from the gibberish of wanting to zig-a-zig-uh, if you wish to be the lover of one of these women, you've got to get with her friends. This is an interesting test drive concept that seems pretty racy for mainstream radio. I always think it's hilarious that innuendo is okay, you just can't say things explicitly. Or, when you do, the FCC (and I realize they might not do the bleeping, just require it) just does a really poor job of leaving anything to the imagination. Excepting rewrites like Let's Get it Started, dropping the word dick in The Whisper Song (and currently I'm not sure whether there is even a version where they say dick, but it doesn't really matter) doesn't exactly move that into the appropriate for children music category.

Man, I'm getting old. But it's not so much about that as it is that I'm bringing up what we all basically know, and that is that how most censorship is carried out is incredibly foolish.

Speaking of songs, this jam came on the radio in my girlfriend's car the other evening, and you really should give it a listen. Perhaps many of you are already acquainted with the late Jimmy Castor and that Troglodyte track, but whether you are or not, you should turn that up. Incidentally, it's probably about time "troglodyte" got back into popular usage. I'm not actually sure it ever was in popular usage. Of course, once it starts getting used a lot, grumpy old me will gripe about it. So it goes.

Other than that, I was reading about PCP aka Angel Dust today because I never really knew much about it. If you give that wiki a read, you really have to wonder why anyone would use it in the first place. Yes, it's a hallucinogen, but everything associated with it sounds terrible. It seems as if the only real possibility for its continued usage would be a) desperation and b) perpetuation of a shitty experience. "Man, PCP sucks...I need to trick some other idiot into using it." But hey, don't knock it till you try it, right?

And with that said, sleep is probably a good idea. If I don't make it back here before Sunday, just a friendly reminder to do something nice for, or say something nice to, your mother. As long as she's not a bitch. Even then, make sure to check that you're not the asshole (or bitch). Happy holidays.

Monday, April 30, 2012


I am really on the cusp of missing mine, so basically what I'm doing is writing an entry whereby I acknowledge that I should have written an entry, which is still writing an entry, so there it is.

More to come in May, filling some with dismay.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Welcome Back

Shout out Mase. Whenever I skip town for a bit, town being Chicago these days, it takes a little adjusting for me to settle back into a routine. I know this is not unique to me, but I find it amusing the small elements that effect my ability to return to some sort of normalcy. Back a few years, on my walk to work through midtown Manhattan, I had my friendly landmarks that kept me in check. I wrote about that in here, but maaaaaan, I'm trying not to be self-referential, even though I already have been so now this just reeks of laziness in not bothering to find that link.

When I got on the train this past Thursday morning it was decidedly less packed than usual, which was nice, because I become a grumpus quite easily when packed in. It's not the sharing of that space so much it is that I consider most of the folks I'm packed in with to be rude, as if they don't grasp that we're all in exactly the situation and none of us really want someone else's iPhone giving us a rectal exam (at least not without asking first). I had a spring in my step, which is seasonally appropriate, but right as I climbed the final set of stairs, misfortune befell me: a humanoid male dispelled gas from his posterior.

Given that I was climbing the stairs behind him, this put my face right at fart level. This was rather vile, but due to the secretive nature often adopted when farting, I just smiled to myself with the thought that I had a glass to the door and was let in on the moment, without the embarrassment due the farter when one has noted their fart. Life's a gas sometimes.

Other than that, I was a touch dismayed to see the enormous Skyn condoms billboard removed from it's usual place right across from our office, replaced by some doofy Virgin airlines ad. I'll be a but miffed when that too runs its course.

As nothing of substance and primarily gas has been relayed in this post, I bid you adieu. Until tomorrow.
Thanks for stopping by…you stay classy Planet Earth.