10-31-04 (22:06)
  • updated movies list.
  • i don't like the fall. it gets dark earlier and it gets cold, wet and windy.
  • melanie got really drunk on friday. that made me worry a bit, but at the same time i don't want to smother her or chide her for doing what she wants to do. this is tough.
  • living with a person is more difficult than just being friends with a person. i think when you're younger you don't really realize that and as a result you think your friends are a lot cooler than your roommates or your siblings or your parents. it's great to go out and get wasted and have a great conversation about all the fun you had that night, but that entails denying the reality that only your roommates see in the aftermath of that party. that's one thing that i really don't like about having "in between" friends. with those people when they ask "how are things?" your answer is always "good" or "okay" despite what may be really happening. to those people a night of drinking is only fun and never entails throwing up in the middle of the night and being completely wasted the next day.
  • i guess everyone is dishonest with each other and it's just a matter of degrees. the further a person is from me the more i seem like a normal person. i think that honesty is one of my relative strengths.
  • i should just watch a movie and stop digging a hole for myself.
  • i think melanie is starting to get a bit tired of me. i figure that won't be as much of a problem when we're only hanging out once every couple weeks, but in the interim it's tough for her because she knows that i do better when she's around. i should try to find some ways to make myself scarce so things don't get too bad.

  • 10-29-04 (00:21)

  • updated movies list.
  • been a slow month for movies, but i hope to finish strong these last few days.
  • pretty blah day overall. there's just a lot of stuff to sort through right now. being strong is supposed to be its own reward, but i don't really see it that way right now. it seems like if i were to get drunk and move on to some other chick that it wouldn't really matter all that much in five years anyway so i may as well do that in order to ease the pain. isn't that what seizing the day is all about? why should i try to be strong when i don't know whether or not it'll be in my benefit down the line anyway? or even if there will be a "down the line." my problem is that i'm too principled. i should learn to be more flexible when it comes to this stuff. no one is really going to give me much grief if i start drinking on a semi-regular basis and it'll certainly help deal with things a bit. it's perfectly normal. of course the problem with all that is that i would give myself grief about it because i'm my biggest critic. i'm pretty sure that's the way it's always been. i suppose i sort of envy melanie in this regard. with me out of the house, if she starts drinking on a more regular basis no one is really going to hold her accountable for it. she's had a lot of loss and so it's understandable. so long as it doesn't affect her studies people will think it's not such a bad thing. she's got too much to lose at this point to allow it to get out of control so that's probably not a concern. it's certainly an attractive idea - to be able to just take a couple nights a week off from the suffering of life, from having to think about the things that haunt a person. films sometimes can do that for me, but it's less repressive and more cathartic. if i watch die hard, for example, i might project my own situation into the that of john mcclane's and thus experience pain through him. in that sense there is a barrier between me and my pain, but i'm also still dealing with it in a sense.
  • james chai wrote in his last email to me that one of our mutual track friends lost his mom and had recently turned to drugs as a way of dealing with it. with him is sorta makes sense since the guy had an ulcer when he was in junior high. so in that case i guess drugs might make sense. i guess a lot of the question becomes "what is coping with pain and what is avoiding it?" i don't really know. if i bury myself in my work then most would construe that as avoiding my problems, but some might say it's a constructive outlet for the negative energy. if i'm sitting at home thinking about my problems all day long is that really coping with it? sure i'm sitting there suffering, but i'm not changing my situation and just thinking about something doesn't mean you're getting over it. perhaps all that gets you through a problem is time. so maybe the trick is just to get to the finish line as unscathed as possible. if that's the case then avoiding the problem by taking nights out on the town drinking, working a lot, watching a lot of movies, etc. might be effective and preferable. for some reason i feel like confronting the problem is important, but when i did that the last time this happened it didn't really benefit me. perhaps i was on the wrong track last time. it seemed like the only thing that healed me was time. so maybe getting through this next year or two as quickly as possible should be my paramount concern. so maybe it's just about finding the right mixture of sleep, drugs, women and movies. it works for some people, why not me? i can't figure that one out.
  • in hindsight i wonder if my beef discussion made melanie want to break up with me even more. of course i didn't know at the time about her smoking, but now that i do that discussion seems kinda mean. what's done is done i guess.
  • i actually wonder about that stuff a lot. i wonder what may have sent her over the edge to the point where she finally said "i think it's time." again, what's done is done and it doesn't help to think about those things, but i'm a curious person so i can't help but explore the possibilities in my head.
  • my fantasy football team is 0-7 this year. it's really stunning how poorly i've done. i looked at the results and i got the worst score 2 out of the 7 weeks which means that, if i was very lucky on the matchups, i could potentially be 5-2, but that would have been extremely unlikely. as it is, my team is the worst in the league with no signs of getting any better.

  • 10-28-04 (15:56)

  • what's most hard about everything right now is that there's an intense contradiction between the past and the present, and the likely future.

  • 10-27-04 (23:58)

  • a couple days ago james chai, an old track buddy, wrote me an email. hadn't heard from him in a couple years or so. my girlfriend at the time was my best friend, but behind her, james was probably the guy who i most liked to hang out with because he and i were really similar. i think i was actually telling melanie a story about him a month or so ago. at any rate, it was nice to hear from him; he's a stand-up guy.
  • updated movies list.
  • it's been getting pretty cold lately.
  • on august 30th i wrote this to my paternal grandmother: "dad told me something about you wanting to vote for bush...? i must inquire as to your motivation behind this decision. is it his vicious pursuit of the death penalty; his haphazard and corrupt foreign policy; his failed economic policies which have led to increases in poverty and our debt load; or his constant catering to industry over the environment through "voluntary" monitoring programs; or is it his hypocritical policies regarding the military - "support" them in war, while slashing veteran's benefits and pension plans; or, being a teacher, is it his failed federally mandated "leave no child behind" program which he has under funded since day one? living in Davis i don't come across many bush supporters so i don't have much perspective in this regard, hopefully you can provide a cogent argument in his support. i honestly do wonder why roughly half the country supports him in spite of his mostly failed policies and the numerous scandals in which his administration is complicit. -Chris"
  • yesterday i got her reply: "hi Chris--thanks for the informational email--I can tell you are a Political Science major!  Bill and i would like to see you over here--miss you!  The Trojans look great this year--Fight On!  hugs NENE"
  • by my count i asked a good seven or eight questions, or maybe just one really long one, yet only got "thanks for the informational email." dammit.
  • my tv has been having some problems lately. it turned off by itself the other day. then, while i was watching die hard, it turned all green and, later, it got really bright for a moment. all these problems are fixed when i turn it off and then back on once or twice.
  • also, my computer has been on the fritz. the screen will be segmented in vertical columns of various colors, but the image that was on the screen will still be sort of visible. the only way to fix that problem, again, is to turn the computer off and then back on. it's not the monitor, but it could be the video card, the new ram i got or the new windows media player i downloaded. it's happened three times in the last month.
  • six more days.
  • saw scott simmon at work today. he's always nice to talk to.
  • it was nice to see the red sox finally break through after 86 years.

  • 10-27-04 (00:42)

  • life's tough.
  • melanie's dealing with this whole thing a lot easier than i am and of course that just makes things worse. lately we've been sort of treading water in our relationship. trying to make the coming weeks as good as possible. and lately it's been working well, i know that things will never be the same, but we are still able to enjoy quality time with each other and have fun despite the impending breakup.
  • my mind is my own worst enemy because within a 90 second span i can think, and believe: she loves me and is making things good because there's still a lot between us; or she can't stand me and is going through the motions so that living with each other for the next month or so will be bearable; or she still cares about me, but is really excited about "being on her own" (though not living by herself) and is just with me in the interim because it's convenient; or all sorts of other things.
  • one of my co-workers is going to be getting a new place and so his one bedroom apartment is going to be free at the end of november. i asked him if i might take over his lease for him and right now that's looking like a good possibility. i had some hope that when i told melanie this news she would be a little disappointed by the news, but she wasn't. that's the thing about hope - it's the exact opposite of logic and, thus, usually ends up crushing itself. somehow though, hope is a resilient bastard and always comes back. i'm a pretty logical person and don't give in to hope very frequently (though it's always there).
  • i was thinking about this in regards to the red sox/yankees series. i'm not a real fan of either team, but i like an underdog and so i was rooting for the red sox. now on paper it's easy enough to call the sox the favorite (that's how vegas had the series), but when you take into account last year's series and the last 86 years of red sox history then it's pretty tough to call the red sox the favorite, even, maybe, but not the favorite. then you look at the series after three games when the sox were down 0-3 and no team in the history of baseball had ever come back from that deficit...well, logic should take over at this point, but even i had some glimmer of hope for the sox. only twice in the history of professional sports has a team been down 0-3 in a best of 7 and actually come back to win the series. of course the sox rewrote the course of baseball history and won four in a row, thus winning the series. sometimes hope is worthy of itself, but usually it isn't. hope keeps us going, but when it crushes itself it often makes us want to stop living. hope is funny like that.
  • just a bad night i guess. tomorrow may be different, or it could be the same. it doesn't really matter. part of the hurt derives from the childish desire to have 'hand,' or power. i have no hand. i could tell her that i don't want to ever see her again and cut off our relationship altogether and that would make our relationship easier - there wouldn't be any middle ground any discomfort when we see each other, there wouldn't be any lingering feelings between each other that we had to deal with when we were together. it would be like a band-aid and it would be completely stupid. there's no parity in our relationship right now. she sets the ceiling on our relationship and that's hard on me, but i have to deal with it or i'll probably lose her altogether. so each day i have to deal with whatever mood she's in. if she wants to do her independent thing and shun me then i can feel like crap because the girl i've called my best friend and girlfriend for four years doesn't want to hang out with me. and if she wants to hang out then we can be friends. and i guess i just have to deal with it in that way on an hour by hour basis. maybe it's control that she's after.
  • bob flanagan was the subject of a documentary called "Sick: The Life and Death of Bob Flanagan, Supermasochist." essentially it's about a guy who has cystic fibrosis and as a result is in constant physical pain. in order to deal with this pain he fetishizes pain and becomes a masochist. he hammers nails through his dick and does all sorts of seemingly crazy shit. really, though, (and he acknowledges this fact) it's about him wanting to have control over some segment of his pain. he talks about being in constant pain throughout his life and the lack of control he has over it. he says that being a masochist is more about controlling his pain than it is about getting off or any pseudo-spiritual motivation. the will to power is a powerful drive, maybe giving up control can be a strong thing to do.
  • or maybe i'm way off base, overanalyzing everything and just trying to find ways to rationalize giving myself up to her. but, then, why would i want to submit to someone who would rather live with a relative stranger and date other people? perhaps i should be strong and take he reins of the relationship and just end it altogether, that would show her. but to what end? i'd be miserable, she'd feel sad and, eventually, we'd both move on to make other fucked up relationships based upon this experience. there's something to be said about the past as prologue, and there's also something to be said about bucking the trend of the last 86 years. there's something to be said about giving yourself up and there's something to be said about standing up for yourself.
  • right now everything is a mixed bag and i just have to learn to roll with things a little better.
  • at work it's pretty funny. tower is on this loan program with the bank that bases their loans on the assets they have in their stores; it's called "assest-based lending." essentially it means that the more product we have in the store, the more money we can borrow from the bank. as a result they send us insane amounts of product (i'm the product manager by the way and that means it's my job to deal with everything the store gets). there are a few ways to stay sane in this situation - maintain perspective (it's only a record store) or treat everything as a game, or a challenge. the people at the main office give us 75,000 units of product and our store only has space for about 60,000 units so the game is finding ways to deal with that overflow. and such is life.

  • 10-25-04 (00:45)

  • "Over the last five years, we've grown the Netflix community to over 2.2 million satisfied members. We appreciate your business, and our goal has always been to provide you great service.

  • Since our price increase in June, some of our members have expressed concerns about the new pricing. We've listened to this feedback and are pleased to inform you that we're lowering the price of your Netflix 3-at-a-time program from $21.99 per month to 17.99 per month.
    You don't need to do anything. Your membership will automatically move to the lower 17.99 price. The lower price will appear on your next bill on or after November 1, 2004. You will still get the same great service and convenience, but now you will pay less for it. So please sit back, relax and enjoy your movies!"
  • that's great news. i had recently been flirting with the idea of canceling the service.
  • updated movies list.
  • lots of ups and downs lately. generally the closer to melanie that i am, the better i feel.
  • today i went to play golf with jon. we did better than last time, but he beat me this time. to my credit, though, i had the sole par for the day. golfing is fun, but pricey.
  • it was nice to talk about my situation with someone other than melanie and myself. also, everything is better when discussed on the golf course.
  • eternal sunshine is coming out with a special edition early next year. i'm holding out for that one.
  • jon brion did the soundtrack to "i love huckabees." he did the fantastic soundtrack for "punch-drunk love" as well.

  • 10-23-04 (01:00)

  • updated movies list.

  • 10-22-04 (20:43)

  • today turned out to be awful. it started sad and stayed that way. i left work about an hour early because i felt like it.
  • i called a couple apartment complexes and they were either student-only or didn't have any vacancies. i don't want to wear out my welcome here. sometimes i want to leave right away and sometimes i don't want to ever leave.
  • i don't feel like eating or watching movies. work is lame but it keeps me busy, however it doesn't keep my mind busy.
  • sometimes i'll feel like i understand where she is coming from and i believe her when she tells me that she still cares about me and doesn't want to hurt me. then other times i feel bitter and untrusting.
  • i started thinking the other night about all the other things that go along with not having her - i won't be able to goto berkeley or sacramento as easily since i won't have a car. not being able to goto sacramento means i can't check out free movies at the tower or crest theaters anymore. not having access to cheap, quick transportation to berkeley means i'm not going to see johnny as frequently. then i started thinking about the really stupid stuff that i'll miss like being able to do my laundry in my own house for free (or at least not having to save quarters). and i thought about all the stuff i'm going to have to get rid of since i'll likely have a much smaller place. and i thought about her not having anyone around to fix her bike for free or fix things around the house. most of all i think about not having anyone to talk with anymore, not having my best friend under the same roof as me, not being able to yell at the tv and have someone laugh or echo my sentiments.
  • i like driving. when i goto la i always prefer to drive even though it's expensive and time consuming. it's a disconcerting feeling to goto the airport, get on the plane, get to cruising altitude, take a nap and be 400 miles away. i like the act of traveling and seeing the landscape change, and putting some time into moving from a to b makes a mental difference. that's a big reason for my choosing to drive to la when melanie's dad died. if i had taken a plane then i would have still been in a davis state of mind.
  • john came into work today. it's always nice to see him. i only worked with him for a few weeks, but he's a good guy and we're very similar. the night before melanie broke up with me i called him to see if he wanted to go see a movie in sacramento (since that's where it was playing and because that's where he lives), but he didn't answer the phone. i ended up going by myself and now i realize that i'm probably not going to have many opportunities in the future to do that sort of thing.
  • i think my voting dilemma is indicative of who i am. obviously it shows my politics, but beyond that it demonstrates how i choose my friends. most people in my position (with my views) would vote for kerry because they agree with him often enough to do so. i, however, am really picky when it comes to choosing friends (and for whom i will vote). let's say i agree with a person (friend or kerry) 70% of the time - for me that's not enough. and really i shouldn't apply a percentage to it because it's too arbitrary, but my point is that, for most people. agreeing with a person 70% of the time is cause enough to be friends, or to vote for them. i, on the other hand, seem to have a standard closer to 95%. the other way of saying all this is that i'm a stubborn, judgmental, elitist and that that's why i don't have any friends and insist on voting for nader.
  • one in a million really isn't all that impressive as far as people go. if you consider that i have maybe a dozen people in my life who i consider close friends or family then that breaks down to (assuming a population of about 6 billion) one in 500 million. so if you're a friend or family member of mine who i consider worthwhile then you're 500 times better than one in a million, at least to me.
  • at one point i cared about how few friends i had, but i realized that it didn't really matter because i had a few really good friends who wouldn't hurt me and who i could probably always count on. i definitely prefer it that way. i think that, for the most part, i keep all poseur friends away. if i can't talk with you about serious things then i'm probably not going to hang out with you. i guess one could say that i don't have friends who are good for just going to a ball game with. i suppose that with me it's all or nothing and that's why i can't bring myself to vote for kerry.

  • 10-22-04 (11:43)

  • today has started out as a sad day.
  • i have work from 12-9 and then i have work tomorrow as well. this week has gone by slowly.
  • updated movies list.

  • 10-21-04 (20:20)

  • kerry has said plenty of things, and is on the wrong side of plenty of issues, for me to vote against him. the question i'm having to deal with right now is how often i need to agree with a candidate. will kerry do a good job? sure. better than bush? of course. could someone else on the ballot do a better job, probably. is there someone else on the ballot with whom i agree more frequently? yes. but how often do i need to agree with kerry to vote for him? i've filled out my ballots completely, except for the presidential category. i feel like sort of a sellout if i vote for kerry, and i don't know enough about the green candidates other than that they have adopted the green platform. then there's nader/camejo and i like both of them and where they stand on most of the issues. so i don't know what to do right now.

  • 10-21-04 (01:16)

  • tonight could have been better.
  • red sox won and that's exciting. i'm happy for them. even though they were favored i would have bet against them at the beginning of the series, i was wrong on that one. i still don't understand why they were favored. i mean, yes they have a better pitching staff overall and yes they have a more solid lineup, but the history is so overwhelming that i can't see them being favored. but i suppose this series changed all that.
  • odds on john kerry winning are +160, bush is at -200. in other words if you bet $200 bucks that bush will win you'll only get 100 and if you bet 100 on kerry then you'll get 160. so the money is definitely on bush right now. i actually kinda expected it to be closer than that. kerry might not be a bad bet with those odds.
  • i should watch ghost dog again. the way of the samurai speaks to me.
  • die hard becomes a better film every day. there's one part in the film where john is talking with al and he's going over his relationship with his wife out loud: "tell her that she's the best thing that ever happened to a bum like me.... she's heard me say i love you a thousand times, but she's never heard me say i'm sorry. and i want you to tell her that, al. i want you to tell her that john said he's sorry." that film has been in my top three since the day i started keeping a mental list of such things.

  • 10-20-04 (18:32)

  • just saw damon hit a grand slam in the top of the second inning, it happened about 30 seconds after i turned on the tv. boston is up 6-0. could be interesting. very fun series. glad to see lowe in instead of wakefield, good choice.
  • melanie and i went out to see a movie last night. to use a cliché - the last few days have been a rollercoaster. going out with her was great, but then i start thinking that this may be the last time i'll ever drive her to the movies or hold her hand in the theater and i start bawling.
  • i think these are the times that define who you are so i'm trying to be what i want myself to become.
  • updated movies list. (will add reviews later.)

  • 10-19-04 (21:21)

  • had work today and that was mostly shitty.
  • sunday was the first real rain of the year. that was fitting. it reminded me of the postal service song "clark gable," only we didn't have to fake it. that album is great.
  • so far there hasn't been a real soundtrack to our break up, but i think the new REM album is the one that i'll always associate with this time.
  • i've done a lot of crying and being sad and feeling sorry for myself. i think we both feel pretty miserable. i'm still very much in love with her and that makes it a lot harder. if we hated each other we could just move out and go our separate ways, but that's not how it is. i see it as a good sign that our relationship had real meaning behind it, not that there was ever any serious doubt.
  • i feel as though she's dying and this is my time to be with her. i know she's going to be around after we move into separate places, and i'm sure we'll see each other, but obviously it will never be the same.

  • 10-18-04 (23:43)

  • i'm extremely sad right now. i can't stop thinking about the good times we had and the ways i screwed up. i guess i've always been hard on myself, but i view this as my greatest screw up of all.

  • 10-18-04 (11:14)

  • it was really hard to sleep last night. i haven't cried in a while so i guess having a good cry is a nice change.
  • my fantasy football team is 0-5 this year and i'm behind by 15 points right now. fortunately i have two players who are in tonight's game so there's a slim chance i could actually win my first game of the year by the end of tonight.
  • i'm glad i don't have work today.
  • the niners game yesterday was a disappointment.
  • i don't know what i'm going to do today.

  • 10-18-04 (00:08)

  • melanie decided she wants to break up with me and today she told me as much. she wants to be free, she wants to be able to date other men and women, she doesn't want to be accountable to me anymore, she said. also, she apparently likes smoking pot and cigarettes which is something she hid from me for i don't know how long. she still cares for me and wants me to be happy. i trusted her more than i've trusted anyone else in my life and that trust was broken and now my heart is broken. i don't know when i'm moving out. i don't know what's going to happen in the next few days/weeks. a few weeks ago i saw this as a possible future. i remembered my old girlfriend going off to college, spreading her wings and breaking off communication with me forever. i realized once melanie's father died that she was going to be in much the same situation mentally and emotionally. of course i can't say i expected it, but it wasn't entirely unexpected either. i'm not feeling too hot right now. billions of people before me have had this same feeling. it seems impossible to ever fully trust anyone again. i got through it before and i'll get through it again. there's undoubtedly going to be a lot of sad times ahead. i wonder if she felt more okay about doing this because i got a raise and will be able to afford a place of my own. there are good and bad things about everything. right now i can't honestly see myself remaining friends with her. it's part of who i am and it's also that way because i feel very betrayed right now. it's amazing how a new perspective on something changes so much. if you suddenly discover that someone wasn't who you thought they were or that they were holding things back (for who knows how long) then suddenly all that has come before is changed. that's the power of a moment. and that's a cliché thought.
  • in other news i finally watched "swept away" and "thx 1138" tonight. both have been on the back burner for a while. thx 1138 was a disappointment and swept away was better than i thought it was going to be. right now i'm in the middle of "alien" so maybe i'll get back to that. breaking up with your girlfriend in the middle of a movie kinda sucks.
  • i've thought about the possibility of breaking up with melanie before. there have been times when i've gotten home and she's not there and it felt like i was single already. then there were times when i'd get home and she'd be home and would greet me nicely and i thought about how nice it is to have someone waiting for you at home and how sometimes i really need that and especially how lucky i was to have someone who was actually willing to put up with me. lately that hasn't been true as much since she goes out a lot with her friends and i stay at home angered by the fact that she prefers to spend time with the people she works with. then i think how much of an advantage friends have over boyfriends since they don't have to live with the person and the level of emotional commitment isn't the same. there hasn't been parity in our relationship and i think that's a lot of what it comes down to. of course there can't be parity without effort and there can't be effort without a reason to expend that effort. i suppose we both slowly lost that reason, her faster than i.
  • i was right about this kind of thing once before as well. in high school i talked with my girlfriend at the time about her moving up to berkeley with one of our mutual friends and the possibility of something happening between them. she assured me nothing would happen and then a few months later it all came true. except i didn't foresee that whole mormon angle coming. that one caught me by surprise.
  • (01:32)
  • finished watching alien. a fine film indeed. i planned on watching aliens afterwards, but things change.
  • i'm glad the red sox won today, but i'm afraid there's no chance in hell they're going to win the series.
  • i had a pretty good, reasonable budget worked out through the end of the year that would have cut my debt down to about $800 by the year's end. i'm thinking that's not going to happen anymore.
  • updated movies list.
  • the idea of being on my own is starting to settle in now that i'm looking for places online. this is a sad process.
  • we had tentative plans to go to england in april. that would have been nice.
  • there's a great scene in office space where ron livingston's character is sleeping on a saturday and lumberg calls him and leaves several messages because livingston is supposed to go into work that day. then livingston's girlfriend calls and is like "what's wrong with you? you're supposed to be at work and yesterday you just sat their when the hypnotist had his heart attack." and livingston basically tells her he just doesn't care about anything anymore. so his girlfriend breaks up with him over the phone and yells "oh yeah, and i've been cheating on you!!!" livingston hangs up the phone, unaffected and goes on with his day. it's a hilarious scene.
  • i wonder how much her father's death has to do with this decision. i can certainly understand the feeling of wanting to start anew after something like that, and that's in part why i thought about this coming to pass. of course i don't think it's a good reason, but then again it's not my decision. for the most part i think i've done a decent job of being there for her in the past. i suppose it makes sense in a circular way though since we got together shortly after the end of her years in gonzaga of living a very different lifestyle. i like to think that i was in part responsible for getting her out of that, but now i am thinking that it didn't really matter. she seems to have a lot of friends so i'm sure she'll be okay without me. she said she can't imagine her life without me, but i can't imagine my life with her as anything but a girlfriend.
  • what makes me most sad right now is when i think of the great times we've had in front of the tv or on the trip or doing whatever. i really feel like crap right now.
  • i guess this is going to be a lame way for people to find out about this, but i don't feel like calling people individually to tell them about it. in fact i don't really feel like talking right now at all.
  • priceless.
  • i'm going to have to stay away from reading adbusters, watching tv and listening to radiohead for a while. those things are all too depressing.
  • the other week i commented to melanie that it seems some people never have problems with money, but then their emotional life is always in shambles. i mentioned that i think i'm the kind of guy who will never quite have my finances in order, i'll always be in debt, but i generally seem to be mentally and emotionally strong. that in mind, it's interesting that all this happens right after i get a raise.
  • at least i don't have work tomorrow.
  • melanie and i "met" on 10-21-2000. just shy of four years ago.
  • i wonder how she's going to tell the story to her friends and family.
  • in theory i'd like to remain friends, but when i think about the reality of it and what kind of person i am it doesn't seem to add up. time will tell. i'm not very good at relationships and it seems that's especially true with women.
  • it's so weird to have four years of your life change so quickly.
  • she assured me that there was nothing that i did, or could have done, to change things. i don't really think that's true though.
  • heidegger said that you only know what you're capable of when you truly become aware of your own mortality. i think this could be applied, in a way, to the death of a relationship as well. only after the end has happened can you really know what feelings you had or what the potential of that relationship was. i don't really know.
  • there's got to be some seinfeldian wisdom regarding breaking up. george once lamented that he didn't get break-up sex after seinfeld told him it was the best kind of sex there is. then there's the coke machine analogy.
  • i'm going to try to sleep now.

  • 10-17-04 (02:41)

  • interesting.
  • updated movies list.
  • there's a guy who works as a ticket broker who came by tower today. he called me yesterday to introduce himself and sounded really slick and full of shit - he said that he "rolls with a lot of green" and likes to spread money around and take care of employees so long as they tried their best to get him good tickets. so this morning he was at tower waiting for tickets to go on sale and once tickets went on sale i tried getting him what i could, but nothing great came up. after a while we talked for a bit and it turned out he's really talkative and a bit of a slickster, but not all that bad of a guy. justin, my boss, was also around and at some point took me aside and said "so david (the ticket guy) gave me a hundred bucks, so we should probably split that at some point." that was pretty cool of justin to offer since he didn't have to and i didn't see david give it to him or anything. later on david ended up buying the crew pizza for lunch. i guess the deal with this guy is that he works for the richest woman in california (this is all according to him) and he used to be a cop, but he likes this more because he still gets to help people out and makes a lot more money in the process. the reason he spreads around so much money is that he feels if he greases the wheels then everyone will give him first class treatment and he'll get more tickets and that'll lead to more profit, etc. apparently he gave some guy at another tower store a $500 tip the other day for getting him good tickets for some event. he has something like 27 people working for him in northern california who buy him tickets (using his money of course) and then he marks them up and makes all sorts of profit selling them to upper class clients who have better things to do than troll ebay for the best deal possible. i was talking with him about how his business works and he got a call and excused himself for a moment. after the call was done he came back to talk with me, extended his hand and said "i just like to help everyone out." so i got $100 for free today from some guy i had known for about one hour. working at tower has opened my eyes a bit in terms of the way commerce really works. you just don't know until you're out there and you get to see all the free shit that gets spread around to try and grease the wheels. promos, clean product for product exchanges, tips from guys like david, etc. the thing that has surprised me the most is that this kind of thing happens all the time with small time stuff. everyone knows about casinos comping big spenders, but that's a different league. i'm talking more about people who are in my tax bracket who do this kind of stuff all the time to get hook ups here and there. i think one reason i don't have more first hand knowledge of this is because i have so few friends. but even johnny has his mac hookup who gets him free ipod batteries or mac monitors. in that case it's not a reciprocation type of setup, but it still illustrates how much free stuff is floating around out there.
  • part of me thinks it's lame that this guy can come in and just spread some money and get special treatment. at some stores he just leaves a couple grand in cash and has people working the ticketmaster drawer pulling the best tickets they can get for him. so he has an informal account at several locations and other people working for him throughout the state and all of this is possible because he spreads money and free food around like crazy. i mean if he's giving someone like me $100 then you know he's spreading a lot around. at any rate, the other part of me thinks it's pretty cool. he's a nice guy, he wasn't pushy at all, he helps out other customers seemingly without an agenda, and he wasn't disappointed when sorta lame tickets came up. plus, i'm not going to do anything special for the guy so i look at as i'm just getting an extremely nice tip for giving good customer service. and, after i got my $100 i bought the girl i was working with an LP, so maybe trickle down economics does work.
  • now that i am making more money i'm considering switching my political affliation. all of a sudden the republican party is looking pretty sweet.
  • i've only seen 18 movies this month, that's not very good. i hope to make up some ground this weekend.

  • 10-16-04 (00:05)

  • watched a good episode of star trek tonight. that show was so good.
  • great stuff.
  • "If it is true that amphibians are, as Conservation International's Russell Mittermeier puts it, "one of nature's best indicators of overall environmental health," then we are all in big trouble, because amphibians are having a seriously rough time of it. According to a massive new worldwide study involving more than 500 scientists from over 60 countries, published today in the journal Science, up to 122 species of amphibian have gone extinct since 1980, and up to a third of known remaining species may be rapidly nearing that same fate.  "This has taken the scientific world completely by surprise," said survey leader Simon Stuart. While air and water pollution, habitat loss, overharvesting for food and medicine, and a fungal disease called chytridiomycosis, which may be worsened by climate change, all play a role in the decline of various species, biologists are still baffled by the extent of amphibian disappearances.  They speak of some species experiencing "enigmatic decline," and they're at a loss for how to help them.""
  • ooh ooh, i know the answer...kill all humans and things will be okay again. it's pretty much guaranteed to work.
  • tomorrow is my friday.
  • if i had lots of money i'd invest in gold until after january 21st, when the president is sworn in. gold is always good during uncertain times. $418.398/oz right now. i'll have to check it in a few months to see if i was right.
  • it's funny to think about people who think that it's evil to eat beef. some of these same people have no problem with smoking or drinking on a regular basis. it's funny, in part, because they care more about their perceived impact on the environment through their non-consumption of beef than they do about their own body. surely it's not a health issue since beef in moderation really isn't very bad and acquiring organic or local beef is fairly easy nowadays. i consume maybe 20 pounds of beef a year and i'm sure that has a less detrimental effect on my body than smoking a pack of cigarettes and puts less strain on my liver than a few nights' worth of binge drinking. this may be part of a larger contemporary trend - people caring more about their perceived distant impact on large issues, than their own self. if this is true it could be spun as both a good thing and a bad thing. on the one hand it's nice to see a trend of people caring about their impact on others, on the other hand one could say call it self-hating, at worst, or misguided, at best.
  • in a way you have to respect fundamentalists because they don't dilute their own religion. in a way it's kind of stupid to say you believe in a god who is infallible and whose words are in the bible, but then to say "well i don't agree about this passage or that passage." in a way i kinda look at it as a take it or leave it proposition....otherwise you're not really making sacrifices. if you tailor your religion to suit your needs, wants, and limitations, then what's the point? if there's a christian out their reading this who believes women are equal, marriage is only between a man and a woman and that you can not believe in god and still go to heaven, then email me and justify your beliefs. then again the bible contradicts itself every other passage anyway so i guess god is telling us that it's up to our interpretation.

  • "never question who I am, God knows
    and I know God personally
    in fact he lets me call him me"
    -saul williams
     

  • i have work at 8am tomorrow.

  • 10-15-04 (01:20)

  • updated movies list.
  • so i don't get paid until tomorrow, but the paychecks always come a day early so i got to see whether or not the raise went through. when i looked at it the amount was 300% of what i usually make for a two week period. i figured that there was a lot of retroactive pay or something, but i got a call about 30 minutes later and was told that they paid me salary and hourly wages and that i'd have to sent the check back. damn. i had already spent all the extra money in my head. the good news, though, is that the original raise of 20% is going to be increased by an additional 24% which makes for a total raise of 49% relative to what i was making a month ago. the reason for the second raise before the first raise even went into effect is that state law apparently requires i make over a certain amount in order to ineligible for overtime. that first raise amount wasn't enough to get me over that threshold so they had to raise my salary enough so that i won't accrue overtime come xmas time. i'm not complaining.
  • the kings have a lot of new players this year. matt | barnes, who played for ucla and is from sacramento, is one of them. christie is out for a month with a foot problem similar to the one i have. last year when chris webber had knee trouble my knee had trouble. recently my knee problems have been replaced by my foot problems...and now christie has problems with his foot. this is definitive proof that there is one consciousness and we all effect each other through are thoughts. michael mercury was right.
  • i still haven't settled into my new schedule.

  • 10-14-04 (01:06)

  • busy day at work.
  • watched presidential debate and didn't get much out of it.
  • no movie tonight.
  • feeling pretty blah lately. more happy at work than i am at home.

  • 10-13-04 (00:38)

  • if i were bush i would make the point that the declaration of independence was signed in 1776, yet it wan't until 1787 (11 years later) that the constitution was signed and not until 1791 (15 years later) that the bill of rights was signed. iraq already has a constitution and is scheduled to vote in a couple months. sure the place is still in chaos in several parts of the country and it's still controlled by systems of extremely selfish power (the us and big money in iraq), but it's a statistic that drives home his point ("it's a tough job") more clearly and could be an arguing point for those ignorant enough to be on the fence in this election.
  • watched the red sox lose tonight. they showed some heart, i think this is going to be a classic series.
  • updated movies list.

  • 10-12-04 (01:08)

  • today was lame.
  • updated movies list.
  • watched two bad movies, played video games and did poorly, watched monday night football even though i didn't care about either team. i have work tomorrow.
  • i hope i get a big paycheck on friday.

  • 10-11-04 (12:45)

  • it occurred to me the other day that nascar is the only "sport" in which the major highlight is the ineptitude of its participants. in baseball a homerun is usually considered the most exciting part of the game and though that can be considered ineptitude on the pitcher's part, it's also a demonstration of skill on the part of the hitter. in nascar, though, crashes are the most exciting part of the sport and they are the complete breakdown of skill that every driver strives to avoid. fuck nascar.
  • i watched about 30 seconds of who wants to be a millionaire today. there was some army guy stuck on a $16,000 question, he called a friend and the friend didn't know. then he used his 50/50 and the two left were A and B. when the question originally came up, apparently, his guess was B, but after more thought he started to think the answer was A. so he went with his second choice and chose A as his final answer. meredith (regis part 2) said "well it was very brave of you to do that flip-flop. it's not brave when kerry does it, but it was brave of you to do it....and you got 16,000, congratulations."
  • what the fuck is wrong with the world? i couldn't believe that she said that. getting in her not-so-subtle dig against kerry for absolutely no reason.

  • 10-11-04 (00:40)

  • updated movies list.
  • i've only seen 14 movies this month. of the 14, 5 have been documentaries. i have plans of watching fahrenheit 9/11 again before the month's end.
  • almost 80% of the movies i've seen this year have been new to me.
  • saw most of the niner game today. they looked okay through parts and awful through other parts. i was sure they were going to lose after being down by one and then giving the ball up in the red zone. but you have to give them credit for bouncing back and scoring twice in six (or so) minutes, including two 2-point conversions. then they won it in overtime. what a game. glad they finally got a win.

  • 10-9-04 (18:19)

  • saw the fourth quarter of the usc/cal game. cal came close, but no cigar. i had usc winning by 10 (two scores) and they ended up winning by only six. one play and they would have lost the game. good game.
  • looked at the yankees score in the 7th inning and saw they were down 5-0 so i figured they were goners. but of course they're the yankees which means nothing is impossible. they won 6-5 in the 11th inning. they advance to the next round.
  • today is my friday so that's great news. now that i'm a manager each day goes by really quickly, but the week goes by slowly. i'm not sure why that is. i think it has more to do with the hours and days of the week that i'm working. it wasn't until about two hours before my shift was over today that i remembered it was my friday, but throughout the week i've felt like it should be the weekend already. it's odd how perception of time works.

  • 10-8-04 (01:14)

  • updated movies list.
  • simpsons season five dec. 21.

  • 10-07-04 (19:09)

  • "today was a good day, i didn't have to use my A-K."

  • 10-07-04 (14:49)

  • among the more interesting "misstatements" of cheney during the debate is the fact that he told people to check www.factcheck.com to find out more about his history with halliburton. goto that website, he said, which is run by the university of pennsylvania and you'll see that a lot of the negative reports about me and halliburton are incorrect.
  • a) the website he meant to pitch was www.factcheck.org which is a pretty great fact checking site that i've cited here in the past.
  • b) factcheck.org has published a response to cheney's comments during the debate: "

  • Cheney wrongly implied that FactCheck had defended his tenure as CEO of Halliburton Co., and the vice president even got our name wrong. He overstated matters when he said Edwards voted "for the war" and "to commit the troops, to send them to war." He exaggerated the number of times Kerry has voted to raise taxes, and puffed up the number of small business owners who would see a tax increase under Kerry's proposals."
    and... "Cheney got our domain name wrong -- calling us "FactCheck.com" -- and wrongly implied that we had rebutted allegations Edwards was making about what Cheney had done as chief executive officer of Halliburton.
    In fact, we did post an article pointing out that Cheney hasn't profited personally while in office from Halliburton's Iraq contracts, as falsely implied by a Kerry TV ad. But Edwards was talking about Cheney's responsibility for earlier Halliburton troubles. And in fact, Edwards was mostly right."
  • c) www.factcheck.com was not a real website, but immediately following cheney mentioning it, the site got millions of hits. the people in charge of directing traffic decided, since the site is not owned by anyone, to link the domain to another site. rather than linking to www.factcheck.org, which would have rectified cheney's gaffe, they sent it to www.georgesoros.com. georgesoros.com reads: "Why we must not re-elect president Bush..." it's an anti-bush site! good to see some people have a sense of humor, and justice.

  • 10-7-04 (00:20)

  • had to unexpectedly work a closing shift tonight. to make things worse i closed with one of the dumbest people i've ever met. lame day. open tomorrow.
  • didn't watch a movie tonight, but i should have.

  • 10-6-04 (12:50)

  • lately, i've seen, heard and read a lot of people describing both cheney and bush as "petulant." it's interesting the way people will recycle words like that. all it takes is one person to leak it into the collective consciousness and the next thing you know a person has a rap as being petulant or a flip-flopper. it's interesting because the left is doing the same thing as the right in this case. just as limbaugh, fox news, etc. act as a right wing echo chamber by repeating the flip-flop term, left wing organizations have followed suit with the "petulant" tag. flip-flopper is likely to stick more.

  • 10-6-04 (00:43)

  • updated movies list.
  • i sent noam chomsky an email back in 1997 asking him what a lowly student such as myself could do about all the bullshit going on in the political realm. i wish i still had his response which essentially said that students were responsible for all sorts of great changes in the past and that everyone needs to find their own way of changing the culture. every time i think about that i'm more amazed by the fact that he actually responded to my email.
  • jon came by on sunday and we played golf for about four hours. that was a good time. we sucked equally hard so that made it fun.
  • work went by quickly today. having more responsibility means i generally stay more busy which means the day goes by more quickly.
  • bought fahrenheit 9/11, shawshank redemption 2 disc, battle of algiers and untouchables today.
  • watched the vp debate today. it looked like a draw to me. it got pretty heated, but then the issue of gay marriage came up and i think things simmered down a bit after that. i actually got the impression that cheney isn't an evil bastard during that portion of the debate, it was an odd feeling. both of them threw around some wishy-washy rhetoric and facts - more so than in the kerry/bush debate. it was the first time i got to see edwards talk for an extended period of time and he has buckets full of charisma. i kinda wanted to have sex with the guy. seriously though, he's got a good smile and that southern charm that might help tip some of the women voters. it doesn't hurt. relative to bush, cheney is not only more willing to lie, but better at it and that was the big thing i noticed tonight. again, though, it doesn't matter which side was lying or telling the truth - all that matters is how they presented their version, and i felt that edwards and cheney did it equally well.
  • job numbers come out friday, could be interesting. again, all that matters in this case is the perceived truth - if the number is big then it's good. i don't think spin control will work - "yes, but the jobs that were created are without benefits, pay less and are part-time..."

  • 10-5-04 (00:14)

  • updated movies list.
  • my streak of watching new movies was broken tonight. i watched "the big one," which i've seen several times before, but up until that point i had seen 36 movies in a row that were new to me.
  • only reviewed the last two films of the day. will review the first two tomorrow.
  • so it seems that christopher doyle is a cinematographer to watch. he did 'in the mood for love' and 'hero,' both of which are visually stunning films. actually i've never seen in the mood for love, but from everything i hear it's a visual feast. usually i follow the director, but i've come to find that the cinematographer can be just as fun to follow.
  • blockbuster still has their one month special on their new rental program - 14.95 for two movies out at a time, unlimited per month. i'm going to do it for a month since i work within a block of one of their stores.
  • i have work early tomorrow.

  • 10-3-04 (00:33)

  • updated movies list.
  • bought tickets to two different kings games this season. one versus the bucks and one versus the warriors.
  • working with my new boss has been pretty cool thus far.
  • my most recent paycheck still didn't reflect the pay raise. hopefully the next one will.
  • i wonder if lawyers have ever tried to use the fifteenth amendment to reenfranchise ex-cons. it says: "The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude." obviously it's a stretch, but it's worth a try. people who are in jail are often enlisted as manual laborers for little or no money and they are said to be "serving" their sentence. of course there's also the easy connection to make regarding the inherent racism of many laws and their enforcement - particularly drugs laws. it's a felony, for example, to possess crack, but possession of cocaine is a misdemeanor. i'm not 100% certain on this, it may be that intent to sell crack is a felony and intent to sell cocaine is only a misdemeanor, but i am fairly certain that their is a greater penalty for the crack charge in equal circumstances. when you couple this information with the fact that the cia peddled this stuff in america's ghettos, or the fact that crack is basically the same thing as cocaine, but it's more commonly associated with poor/colored people, then you have something very close to institutionalized slavery; in my opinion. this is all without mention of the fact that disenfranchised people are being taxed without representation when their voting rights are stripped. this, let us not forget, is a primary reason for our revolution against the british. ideally, i think that if you can work (and are thus having your income taxed), you should have the right to vote - regardless of age, color, sanity, or criminal record. if this were the case i think we'd be a more moral nation, we'd elect democrats more often, and voter purges in states like ohio and florida would happen to a lesser degree.
  • "Congress approved $145 billion in tax cuts without figuring out any way to replace the money, which means they essentially decided just to . . . print more! As we move closer to a full- scale crash of the dollar, our only hope will be one of those credit-card counseling services where the first step will be forcing President Bush to take his lunch to work in a brown paper bag." that's from joe bob briggs' webpage.
  • indeed.
  • i don't know why i don't read theonion religiously. more funny shit.
  • yesterday the two theaters in davis changed from signature theaters to regal entertainment. i hope they continue the independent film series.
  • the big one came out on dvd the other day. it's my favorite michael moore film so watch it if you haven't already.

  • 10-1-04 (22:08)

  • there are only about four offensive players i would pick for my all-star team ahead of ichiro. he's exactly the type of player i would want on my team because he plays solid, fundamental ball and i'm glad he's getting so much press right now for what he's done this year.
  • i forgot to mention that i think the debate will give kerry a 3-5 point boost in the polls.
  • i know it's unpopular, but looking over a lot of schwarzenegger's recent bill signings, i think he did a pretty decent job. i still hate the fact that he said he wouldn't bow to the special interests and has since turned around and received more money from special interests than any previous ca governor. and, of course, there are lots of other things about arnold that i don't like, but looking here at his actions i can't fault the guy any more than most governors. so far i can't honestly say that he's turned out to be the colossal failure that i had anticipated.
  • one more month until we find out what the next four years will be like.

  • 10-1-04 (00:00)

  • jon sent me this link. it's fun.
  • "We've got some interesting Blu-ray Disc news to catch you up on. First of all, PC World magazine is reporting that Sony will announce next month that it has developed an 8-layer version of the Blu-ray Disc, capable of storing a whopping 200GB of data. Sony also plans to "commercialize" a 4-layer 100GB version as early as 2007. Standard dual-layered Blu-ray Discs (which are nearly ready for prime time) have a storage capacity of about 54GB, while standard dual-layered HD-DVD discs have about 30GB." more good news for sony.
  • when we got back from the drive i found two boxes of dvds at the front door. i ordered them from columbia house a while back and they finally came.
  • "You may be pleased to learn that film critic Roger Ebert let it slip on Ebert & Roeper this weekend that Criterion might be giving Beyond the Valley of the Dolls special treatment on DVD next year. Ebert apparently recorded an audio commentary for the disc a while back (Ebert wrote the script for the film, which was directed by Russ Meyer who just passed away last week). Thanks to Bits readers Charles L. and "Wilson" for that." there was speculation on the criterion forum about this as well. i also heard about "hoop dreams" coming through criterion next year. hope that comes to pass.
  • "bin laden" was mentioned 11 times and "saddam" was mentioned 16 times during tonight's debate. i'm not going to flip-flop on this...i still think bush will win, but kerry did a good job tonight. i counted 55 minutes won for kerry and 35 for bush. in the split screen bush seemed smaller than kerry because more of the podium was in the frame for him. that was a small, subtle visual advantage for kerry. if i were on the bush team i'd talk with the camera man about that. on the other hand, kerry shifted his weight from side to side a few times and that could be construed by some as a visual echo of his shifty character. bush was definitely on the defensive for most of the debate and that's a good thing for kery. bush was also consistently under time which showed me that his message is simple (which is good for getting votes) and that he was coached not to adlib (also good). i don't think most people notice those things consciously, but they were there and those are the things you notice during a televised debate.
  • unlike gore, i think kerry did a good job of staying strong and calm and differentiating himself from bush. i thought it was pretty clear what kerry thought vs. what bush thought.
  • it's been a hectic couple days. i should sleep.

  • updated movies list.