i think my boss and i have gotten a little closer since i told him that
i was leaving. we talk more and work less. we also take turns making fun
of the receiving clerk more often. i don't feel sorry for him though, he's
the most hate filled person i've ever met, so he deserves some good-natured
it rained the other day, but today was hot again.
updated movies and cds
i own lists. bought the new blackalicious and have listened to it once
so far. also got an old amadou and mariam album.
the a's are out of the race so that makes me a bit sad. they need to learn
to come out of the blocks a little quicker so they don't have so much ground
to make up in the second half of the season. they play ball the way that
smith used to run the hurdles.
i don't think too highly of kate hudson.
today was up and down. worked out a bit and that was good. didn't watch
updated movies list.
i hate it when athletes, or anyone, really, say "i never imagined that
X could have happened." you hear it most often when athletes win a gold
medal or something and then they say something like: "i never, in my wildest
dreams, could have imagined winning a medal. it's just amazing." how hard
is it to imagine that you'd win a gold medal? especially if you're in the
olympics...people are either lying, have a piss poor imagination or are
just repeating what they've heard other gold medal winners say. actually,
what made me think of this - and this makes me feel a little bad - was
the local news broadcast of a local family who just lost their son in iraq.
they said that they never could have imagined he wouldn't come back home
alive. obviously i feel bad for them, but it got me thinking about how
often people throw around that phrase when they don't really mean it. i
guess people just don't think too much. that's the theme of much of what
i write on this page.
i think i like humanity less and less every day and that's probably a bad
thing. i can't get to the point where i isolate myself too much.
niners lost a heartbreaker today. i have a $50 bet with my dad that the
niners will win at least five games this year and losing a game like that
doesn't bode well for me. raiders also lost a tough one. a's also lost.
rough day overall. tony parrish had two interceptions and the second one
was one of the most amazing that i've ever seen. it was off the hands of
one cowboy and one niner and parrish got it while falling out of bounds.
it was great.
didn't do much today. watched tv pretty much all day. i have work tomorrow
because i don't want to use vacation time for the day off i'm taking on
saturday. when i leave i'll get paid for all my unused vacation so that'll
be nice. unfortunately i don't know if i'll get the bonus that is due to
me for last quarter. management gets bonuses for staying under payroll
and have an increase in sales. we did both those things last quarter, but
it usually takes three to four months to actually get the bonus. my boss
said he'll try to figure something out, so that's nice.
lately i've been wanting to start packing things up in anticipation of
my move. i have too much stuff. there's not much that i really want to
get rid of though. i don't want to get rid of my tools or camping supplies.
i've already thinned down my music and movies a bit. it would be nice to
have a laptop because that would save space. i don't have many clothes.
i plan on getting rid of some of my kitchen stuff and maybe my futon, but
the truth is that there's not much i can get rid of.
updated movies list.
scored some great vinyl at work today. there's even more good stuff that
i didn't pick up, but i'm on a tight budget these days. the "meet the beatles"
and "ascension" albums both book at about $100. all the other davis and
coltrane stuff books at probably $20-$75. it's all in damn good shape,
no ring wear, lightly used. 21 albums cost me $45.
usc just finished beating up on the ducks.
people on the radio are still talking about ucd's upset against stanford
last week. apparently espn and sports illustrated both picked up the news
and s.i. called it the game of the week. some have called it one of the
bigger upsets in college football. not so sure about that, but it was a
pretty big upset and it was made more interesting because the final score
came with 8 seconds left on the clock.
yesterday i told my boss that my last day is going to be november 30th.
he was disappointed, but said that he understood and would do the same
thing if he had he opportunity. he said it would leave big shoes to fill
and that was kind of nice. he told me that in ten years of working at tower
he's never seen a better product manager and that he thinks i'm the standard
by which all product managers should be judged.
we did five interviews today because we need to hire another clerk. it's
amazing how little people know about music despite "loving it." when we
ask the question "why do you want to work at tower?" everyone's response
is "because i love music." people generally claim they have a wide range
of musical knowledge, yet if you ask them to name a jazz or blues artist
they (more often than not) come up blank. five out of the five times we
asked them to name a metal band people said "metallica." it's interesting
to see the trends. there was one girl who knew a good amount about movies,
but she only knew about foreign films. i think that a big part of it is
that we're dealing with people who are usually 18-20 years old and just
haven't had enough time to really get the breadth and depth of music knowledge
that you get in your twenties. the only reason i knew much about jazz when
i was that age was because of the kdvs show vern and i were hosting. my
sister would be able to do it.
extreme home makeover is sort of a nice idea because it's generally a worthwhile
charity, but it's so contrived. it's always a contest to see if they can
find a more pathetic family for the next show. and all the designers and
contractors come off as so fake and their disagreements are hilariously
staged. of course the money would be better spent on habitat for humanity
because the way they construct the homes is extremely inefficient, from
a monetary point of view.
today was okay until i took a nap. napping is nice, but it throws off the
day's rhythm. that said, i needed the rest because i haven't been sleeping
too well lately. meryl will be here next weekend so that'll change things
the miami heat are going to be tough to beat next year. they just signed
payton which makes their defense a bit better and gives them a bit more
stability at the point guard position, which is nice since jason williams
can be sporadic at times.
a's took a step backwards tonight. 2.5 games behind the angels, ten games
left. it's definitely going to come down to the four game series between
the two teams. hopefully they take three of four and then sweep the mariners.
updated movies list.
watched about 15 minutes of the tarantino penned/directed csi tonight.
it seemed to have his writing, and to a lesser extent, directing style.
tv is an interesting form. with something like "lost" you can make a picture
that's much longer than even the longest feature films; in this way television
has the potential to be more free of time constraints. at the same time
you have a different kind of temporal constraint: you have to craft the
story to fit into chapters of 7-15 minute blocks so you can fit in
the commercials. ideally you also want to craft the story to leave some
sort of cliffhanger or hook at the end of each of these chapters - an element
that isn't at all necessary in filmmaking because each chapter flows from
one to the next, without commercial interruption. it would be silly to
write off tv altogether - remember that there are some quality tv movies
(like brian's song) and some worthwhile tv miniseries like das boot (originally
a tv series in germany), decalogue, roots, and heimat.
felt tired all day.
was just watching an episode of the simpsons wherein bart was calling countries
in the southern hemisphere to determine whether or not the water really
does flow down the drain in a clockwise direction. one of the countries
he called was burkina faso which is in the northern hemisphere. not sure
if that was a mistake by the writers or what. he was calling countries
while looking at his globe and i don't think there was supposed to be any
humor derived from him calling a northern hemisphere country so i think
it was a mistake by the writers.
the rockies scored 20 runs tonight. matt holiday had 3 runs 8 rbi and 2
hrs. he's on my last place fantasy baseball team and i had him benched
so i don't get to reap the benefits of one of the best single game performances
of the year. i suck, but not as bad as the padres' pitching i guess.
updated movies list.
season six of the simpsons is the best one that's been released on dvd
monarchs won the championship tonight. i didn't see it on tv which is unfortunate.
you gotta hand it to martha stewart for doing her time and coming back.
it seems like the public really respects it when people pay their dues.
my boss called me at home today and left a message on my answering machine.
meryl did my outgoing message and he recognized the voice. when i called
him back he asked whose voice it was and i told him it was meryl's. then
he asked "are you guys lovers?" i said "yeah, something like that." he
asked "are you really?" and i said "yeah, something like that." he said
"oh, okay...i was wondering."
i should sleep but i'm not tired.
"The feds are digging around for info they could use to blame the flooding
of New Orleans on environmentalists. At the request of the Senate Environment
and Public Works Committee, the Justice Department last week emailed U.S.
attorneys' offices in the Gulf Coast region with this question: "Has your
district defended any cases on behalf of the Army Corps of Engineers against
claims brought by environmental groups seeking to block or otherwise impede
the Corps' work on the levees protecting New Orleans?" The inquiry followed
on the heels of a Sept. 8 article in the National Review Online that criticized
enviro groups for suing in 1996 over the way the Corps was planning to
raise Mississippi River levees and suggested that the suit may have contributed
to the flooding of New Orleans -- erroneously, because it was a different
set of levees that broke during Hurricane Katrina. A Sept. 9 article in
the Los Angeles Times also asked whether enviros bore some culpability
because in 1977 they sued the Corps over a shoddy environmental impact
statement on its plans to build a hurricane barrier to protect New Orleans;
the Corps never followed up on the project."
dante culpepper has as many turnovers in the last two games as jerry rice
had in his 20 year career.
was watching a bit of the san diego/denver football game just now and denver
was attempting a field goal. the announcer said "and there is no breeze
on the field here today." and i said to myself "yes there is - drew brees."
johnny would have been proud.
a third of the people in the world have a cellphone.
mcnabb had one of the best quarterbacking performances i've seen in recent
years. granted it was against a pathetic 49er defense which couldn't get
any pressure on him and is weak in the secondary, but he still deserves
some props for his performance. 23/29, 340+ yards, 5 TDs, 0 INT. he's an
amazing quarterback against shitty teams and he's overrated against good
teams. overall i think he's good, but i'd rather have michael vick or tom
brady. i think that guys like michael vick or steve young are like wilt
chamberlin - they change the complexion of the game. the strategies of
the game need to catch up with their talent. to me, young was the first
guy who was a real double threat. cunningham was okay as a passer and great
as a runner, but young was the first guy who could beat you just as easily
with his arm as with his legs.
i've given up already on my soquel fantasy football league. i wasn't there
to do the second draft so i got a bunch of shitty players. luckily i'm
in another league with james chai so i'll focus my 15 minutes of effort
a week on that league instead.
sacramento won today in the wnba finals. i wasn't impressed with either
team on the offensive end. defensively, though, sacramento had impressive
good to see peyton manning having a performance more indicative of his
talent - 13/28, 122 yards, 0 TDs, 1 INT.
was talking about the roberts appointment with a couple people at work
the other day. both think he's crazy and bad for the country. one of them
added that it was "unprecedented" to have someone outside of the supreme
court be appointed as the chief justice of the court. in reality this is
the opposite of unprecedented - about 2/3 of the time there is a vacancy
for the seat it is filled by someone not currently in the supreme court.
if i hadn't learned that from npr earlier that week i wouldn't have corrected
him and that bit of misinformation would have probably spread. i hate false
information. if anything i have an unhealthy desire to be as accurate as
possible as often as possible.
i was thinking about this the other day while i was at the amadou and mariam
concert. i was thinking about how, because they are blind, they probably
get much of their information from their fellow bandmates and roadies.
descriptions of the crowd demographics, crowd participation, etc. are probably
relayed to them from those who travel with them. to me that would be a
very serious job - to be the eyes of someone who doesn't have eyes. i was
thinking about how i'd be as meticulous and accurate as possible. then
it occurred to me that i'd probably be a pretty decent reporter because
of this trait. i don't have any illusions of pure objectivity, but i do
think there are degrees of subjectivity. i do feel it is possible to be
less subjective than is our nature. everything is colored by our experiences,
but i still think it's possible, and desirable, to be less subjective than
is our tendency. it's a trait i value quite a bit in others. people (randi
rhodes, bill o'reilly, etc.) who unabashedly color the news are obnoxious
naturally, one can make the sensible argument that at least with those
people you know where they're coming from (although o'reilly claims to
be an objective moderate). when it comes to politics and the news i wish
that there was less partisan bickering and partisan line-toeing, but i
suppose that's always going to be part of the system. i'm talking more
about people in my life. if i can't trust a person's viewpoint then that's
annoying. it's hard to trust, and get along with, people who can't see
things from an alternate perspective.
today notre dame proved that they were overrated. i wish them well, but
it was amazing to see them shoot to #10 after just two wins (one being
over #5 michigan who basically handed nd the game). the other was over
pittsburgh, an unranked team with a new coach.
ucla beat up on oklahoma. ok was in the national championship game the
last two years and now they totally suck. good to see that.
usc destroyed arkansas - 70-17.
miami proved me right by beating clemson in 3ot. closer than i thought.
seeing them against fsu made me think they have a good shot at a major
bowl game victory.
a's lost and angels won tonight. that's not good. i've never been that
big of a baseball fan. when i first got into baseball it was during the
a's run in the late 80s and early 90s. i liked canseco (i'm sorry to admit),
the eck and mcgwire, but i never had great loyalty to any team mostly because
teams don't stay together and i never had any regional alliances - i hate
the dodgers and the angels were always kinda pathetic to me. i liked the
giants for a bit mostly because my dad is such a fan, but the whole bonds
thing turns me off of them. for some reason that's not true with the 49ers
- i've liked them ever since i started watching football and i've liked
them since their glory years, up until last year's 2-14 finish i.e., through
thick and thin. anyway, the only team in baseball i really care about this
year is the a's because of meryl. i like the way they play the game, but
i hate that the ownership trades away their great players and doesn't seem
willing to write the check that could put them over the top. even though
i probably wouldn't like the maloofs as people, i like the fact that they
support the kings just about as much as any owners i've seen in pro sports
in the modern era. they do what it takes and seem to have more loyalty
to their players than most teams. yes, they traded webber and christie,
but i know that, objectively speaking, it was probably a good time to make
both moves. they're building for the future while getting some value out
of their older players. it's a cold calculation, but at least it can be
understood. the moves, or lack thereof, from the a's, though, are troubling
as someone who could potentially be an a's fan.
display of two (potential) playoff teams.
looking forward to the wnba finals game tomorrow. i'd be willing to bet
that 75% of the populous doesn't even know the finals are going on right
updated movies i own list.
it's pretty late so i should sleep.
meryl's coming in two weeks for her birthday. that'll be good.
woke up last night to the sound of a cat meowing as if it was in a lot
of pain. sounded like it was giving birth or something. didn't even remember
until just now because i was so out of it.
updated movies list.
ted turner is on letterman right now saying that the ten worst poverty-related
problems in the world can be solved with $62 billion/year. we're spending
about $48 billion a year in iraq, granted there's a lot of waste there,
but it just doesn't seem possible to solve that many problems with that
small an amount of money. i find this far-fetched, but it's piqued my interest.
i'll have to look for the book he's pitching (plan
b) next time at a bookstore. ted turner is a unique guy.
jay leno is such a chode. he's not very funny and he, more often than not,
just offers a platform for right wingnuts like donald trump or arnold schwarzenegger.
oh, and he's not very funny.
well, jim gaffigan is on conan tonight so i'm going to have to stay up
late. s.b. cohen (of da ali g show) is on too.
some kid came up to me at work the other day and said "i'm looking for
midget porn." i said "we don't have any." that was the first time i had
gotten that request.
updated movies list.
i'm pretty certain that the first laugh in early human history was the
result of either a fart or someone being hurt.
updated movies list.
out of water so i'm parched.
the amadou and mariam show was great. they put on a great show, it was
one of the better ones i've been to.
it's funny to see local news anchors feign sincerity. actually, it's more
pathetic and sad, than funny.
what is funny, though, is watching infomercials. it's funny to see them
employ fuzzy math to sell their crappy products. i was watching some vitamin
supplement infomercial and they were talking about vitamin water (and similar
products) being a bad alternative to to their product. they talked about
the sugar content of such products - say 30g per serving and 2.5 servings
per bottle. they, rightly, point out that that means there's 75g of sugar
per bottle. but when comparing the two products on vitamin content they
only compare on a per serving basis. say it has 30% of the daily recommended
vitamin b6 per serving, that would be 75% per bottle. but they say it only
has 30% per serving so it makes their product look even better. it's just
so funny to see them try to pull this shit off.
vlade divac is such a great guy. he's loading up a 25 foot truck full of
food and supplies and driving it to katrina victims himself. 30 hours in
a truck to help people out. that's pretty impressive when he obviously
could have paid someone to do it for him and it's not compulsory - he's
not in the nba anymore so he doesn't have to fulfill any community service
commitments. i know he's always been very active with helping people from
his native serbia and montenegro.
another divac highlight: Joins Hakeem Olajuwon and Kareem Abdul-Jabaar
as the only players in NBA history to amass 13,000 points, 9,000 rebounds,
3,000 assists and 1,500 blocked shots
don't know what to do right now. amazingly, i can't think of a movie i
really want to watch. the next couple months are going to be tough because
i feel like i'm in a transitional phase.
bonds came back today an almost hit a hr. that guy's freaking good. i hope
he doesn't break ruth's record.
monarchs are in the finals. that's pretty cool.
i think that mike martz is the worst game day coach in football.
updated movies list.
going to sf to see amadou and mariam tomorrow. blind Malian singers whose
last album is fucking great.
one of meryl's high school friends was shot and killed yesterday. this
just seems to be a bad few months.
"Partisan squabbling effectively killed California's closely watched Million
Solar Roofs legislation last week, as the state Assembly session ended
on Thursday with no vote on the bill. The measure, which would have dramatically
boosted the state's use of solar power by providing incentives for businesses
and homeowners to install photovoltaic systems, initially had broad backing
from across the political spectrum, but Republicans and Democrats failed
to reach a compromise over Democrat-sponsored provisions that would have
required workers on large commercial solar installations to be paid union-level
prevailing wages. Many Republicans said the provisions would be too costly,
and Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) said he'd veto the bill unless they
were changed. Now, under Schwarzenegger's direction, the state's Public
Utilities Commission is expected to implement some aspects of the Million
Solar Roofs plan, but others would still require legislative approval."
agassi lost yesterday in four sets, as predicted. that third set tie breaker
is what did it. it was amazing to see him just collapse in the fourth set
the way he did; you could tell his spirit was broken. it actually made
me like him a little less.
yesterday al qaeda said la, melbourne and madrid were next...
got another visit from the neighborhood cat tonight. it was meowing outside
so i let it in again. she was more timid this time and didn't want me to
close the door behind her. she left fairly quickly. later on i heard a
cat fight outside my back window so i checked to see what was going on.
she was on top of a car just hanging out, so either she wasn't a part of
it or i missed the mileau. i made clicking sounds and she ran towards my
window meowing. so i went to my front door and made the clicking sounds
some more and she came back. pretty smart kitty. i opened some tuna and
she sniffed at it, but didn't have any. that was a waste. i took some pictures
of her and now she's sleeping on my couch. she has a misshapen left, rear
foot which i hadn't noticed before. meryl named her bella, so that's what
i'll call her from now on. now i'm not sure whether i should let her stay
the night or kick her out when i go to bed.
i think that the major sports provide a great example of the success of
the labor movement. the players' unions in football, basketball, baseball
and even hockey are inordinately more powerful than they are in, say, the
auto industry. the reason players get paid so much is because there is
so much money to be had and the union does a good job of getting a decent
share of that money. so, when you hear people say they hate that football
players get paid millions of dollars for just playing a game, what they're
really saying is either they hate the success of the union or they hate
that so many people (like themselves) are willing to pay $8-800 a ticket
to be entertained. in other words, don't get mad at the players.
notre dame is looking good this year. i think that michigan lost more than
notre dame won, but notre dame is still a solid squad. i think you have
to give some credit to willingham, though, because he's the one who did
the recruiting for this squad.
forgot to mention that i was impressed by miami's safety (meriweather),
i think he's a talent to watch.
ohio state/texas game was good. ohio state is a fun team to watch because
they make games interesting. i still remember parts of that miami game
for the national championship. ohio state has a good linebacker crew, but
their qb situation needs to be figured out and they need to make better
decisions with the ball. there were back to back plays when a player could
have gone to the endzone if he had broken to the outside instead of the
inside. they also missed an easy catch in the endzone in the 4th quarter.
good game though. texas is too one-dimensional so i actually think that
ohio state is the better team.
watched the final game of the women's tennis final. no big surprise there.
i'm not a fan of pierce's simply because of her injury timeouts the other
day. what a rich person's sport. they need to change that rule. i like
agassi, but he'll likely lose in four sets tomorrow. i'll still watch it
though. federer is simply dominating over the last couple years, especially
on the hard court and grass.
al playoff race is heating up. i think that the a's have a tough road to
get the wild card: 3 games against the wc leader - cleveland, 4 games against
the red sox, 4 games against the angels. i think they have the toughest
road of the teams in the thick of it. i think that the a's have a better
shot at winning their division than they do at getting the wild card because
i think the wild card is going to cleveland. they have the lead now, they're
playing better ball than the other teams, and they have an easier schedule.
it'll probably come down to the athletics' penultimate series which is
against the angels. if they take three of four, they'll probably get in.
i've probably watched as many full college football games this year already
as i did all of last year (pre-bowl games).
one thing that interests me in life is understanding how a person experiences
the world. i often feel like my odd memory makes me experience life in
an unusual way. because my memory is so bad i can experience the exact
same revelation more than once. here's one example that i remember, though
it's not really earth shattering: the discovery that stevonne smith, my
old trackmate, plays for the carolina panthers. i wrote about this once
in 2001 (9/26) and then again in 2004 (1/3). both times it was a complete
surprise to me that this guy was in the nfl. and it's not really a small
thing - here's a guy i talked with in the past and now he's on a national
stage; that's worthy of remembering. melanie was actually the one who brought
it to my attention. i wonder how many other things i think i'm experiencing
for the first time, when i've really already experienced them before.
my memory makes my experience like a longer version of memento. instead
of my memory being wiped every hour or so, it gets wiped every year. it
also depends upon what it is that i'm experiencing. some things (my hitchhiking
trip) are vivid in my memories years later. but small interactions are
wiped clean within the matter of a minute or two. if i try to remember
them i might be able to, but they almost instantly go from the front of
my mind to the back. i can be thinking about something very seriously while
i'm at the co-op on my way home, but by the time i get home (a five minute
walk) i'll have completely forgotten it. it's a nice thing because i think
it makes me partially immune to media bombardment. it's also a nice thing
because i think if i remembered 80% of what i've learned i'd have committed
suicide by now....to have the memory of all the injustices and all the
instances of human stupidity stored in my brain would overwhelm me. on
that same note, if i remember 80% of what i've learned i'd probably be
three times more knowledgeable than i am right now. it would be great to
be able to remember who did the score to laura without having to look it
up or to remember what films claire trevor has been in or to remember the
population of nigeria relative to the total population of africa (1/7th,
but at one point i mistakenly remembered it being 1/5th ).
it's one thing to know what a person has done in their life, but it's a
far more interesting thing to know how they experience the world. how they
see things, what they take out of a piece of art or life or an experience,
etc. i think i do a pretty decent job of documenting that here. sure a
lot of it is i did a, b and c today, but more of it, i hope, is i saw a,
b and c and it made me think x, y and z. i think that's a part of good
storytelling and characterization - putting the audience inside a character's
head. plot is just a prop for developing the motivations and experiences
of a character.
updated movies list.
finally caught up.
went to physical therapy and that was good. she said i was flexible and
couldn't understand why i injured myself. also, both my doctor and the
therapist said i have a long torso. never knew that about myself. i know
that i have short arms, but i didn't know that i have a long torso. i try
not to look at myself too much. going back on monday to do some strengthening
other than that today was relatively normal.
updated movies i own list.
updated cds i own list.
how much can one relate to the experiences of another? as humans we have
similar experiences of pain, happiness, alienation, etc. but it is often
said that unless you're black or female or gay or fat that you can't know
what it is to be those things. i agree with that to a degree, but it also
has to go the other way. a black person can't know what it's like to be
white, a female can't know what it's like to be male, etc. it may be easier
since our culture generally relays the experiences of white, right handed,
straight, in shape, good looking, middle-income males more often than that
of a fat, ugly, left-handed, handicapped, short, poor, native-american
lesbians. i do think, though, that i can relate to some of the experiences
of people who aren't of the same income, race, sex, etc. as me. maybe that's
hubris, maybe it's wishful thinking, but i think that it's possible enough
to not get the "you don't know what it's like" type of response some are
want to give.
like anything, though, it's a matter of degree. one can never know what
it's like to be another person - it's just that simple. at the same time,
i was a teenager and i know what it's like to be stared at because someone
thinks you're going to steal something and i know what it's like to be
a minority (because i was one in high school). at the same time short people
don't know that being tall sometimes sucks because you have to bend to
wash your hands or open a door . maybe it sucks less than not being able
to reach something on the top shelf of a cupboard. i don't know and i don't
care. trying to quantify suffering is inane because eventually you get
the point where you have nothing to complain about unless you were in the
holocaust. getting in those discussions is ridiculous and counter-productive.
clearly there is a difference between race and height or sexual preference
or attractiveness, but i use it to highlight the suffering of us tall people.
seriously though, being in the minority is actually a well-documented experience.
but being in the majority in the sense of being looked at as an oppressive
white male devil, doesn't seem well-documented at all. probably because
it's taboo to say that it sucks to feel like an oppressor because of how
you were born. after all, you're in the majority, so what's the big deal?
being a white male sometimes feels like it means that i either have no
culture or have no culture that i'm allowed to be proud of. black/brown
pride is beautiful and white pride is ed furlong in american history x
(he plays a KKK member). i'm not really saying i have much to complain
about, but this sort of perspective is one that, ironically, is in the
vast minority in our culture.
oh, and if you know any fat, ugly, left-handed, mentally retarded, short,
poor, handicapped, native-american lesbians, send them my condolences because
it sucks to be at the bottom of the totum pole. which reminds me of the
seinfeld episode where he's dating a native-american an talks about getting
tickets from a scalper, etc.
finally figured out what song they use as the lead in to the world's
geo quiz on npr. i'm pretty sure it's "kaira" by toumani diabate. there's
an updated version of it that he does with ali farka toure on their new
i know that lust of money is the root of all evil, but if it weren't for
money the u.s. would probably hate china. as is, though, we're on pretty
good terms because of economics.
football tonight, that's exciting.
went to the doctor and she said i have a thoracolumbar strain i.e., a hurt
back. so i'm going to get some physical therapy. i'll set that up tomorrow.
after that i went to work for about 4.5 hours. my back is a little tired,
but good overall. movement is still limited, but i'm far better than i
was on sunday.
physical therapy people just called so i can cross that off my list. going
i like randy moss. that said, i'm going to miss jerry rice.
bob barker is supposed to be some sort of pimp (because he's an old guy
who supposedly gets a lot of play), but i find it an ironic juxtaposition
that his "cause" is to spay and neuter pets.
watched venus and serena williams play each other the other day. it was
disappointing because they didn't get any rallies going. they're both very
powerful and both had trouble with their first serves. there seemed to
be a lot of unforced errors and power seemed to dominate the match. history
actually proves me correct...up to that point they had played each other
14 times, serena winning eight of those matches, but only four had gone
to a third set. not as competitive as i had imagined. i suppose everyone
else already knew this, but i don't have espn and i'm not a tennis fan
so i didn't know that their matches were generally anticlimactic. oh well.
last night i did watch agassi beat blake and was excited by that match.
there was a lot of back and forth, they had some good rallies and it was
just a good match. agassi is a great returner and blake is powerful and
athletic, but couldn't quite place it as well as agassi. agassi had a second
serve ace that was only 108mph (compare this to venus williams who has
a high of about 122mph, serena gets it up to about 118mph), but his serve
was all about placement. great to watch. he has an efficient stroke and
just seems to place the ball extremely well. the crowd was really into
it and the match was going on until 1:15am local time so it was good to
see a packed house in spite of that fact.
also saw some college football over the weekend. west virginia vs. syracuse
was a defensive battle. both had crappy offenses.
miami and fsu was pretty much the same. miami has a good qb in bryant,
but they couldn't put it together until later. fsu won 10-7. miami was
clearly the better team to me, though, because their defense was just as
good and their offense was better. bryant's a freshman so i think that
this game was more about him learning than anything else. they'll be a
good team down the stretch, but i don't see as much potential in fsu.
there's some kid (Alex
Reimer) on jay leno who's ripping the shit out of larry the cable guy
right now. pretty sweet. he's a 12 year old sports blogger. he knows sports,
but doesn't know how to spell, or how to run a spell check. on leno he
appeared to be quite the precocious little brat, but lovable enough.
reviewed eight films and i still have three to go. jeesh.
updated movies list.
updated movies i own list.
gotta gloat over this one: tournament of champions rerun on jeopardy. final
answer was in law and society and two (including ken jennings) got this
one wrong, i got it right: "This Hollywood legend who died January 21,
1959 supported placing monuments that have since brought legal challenges"
jennings put gary cooper, jerome put dean and brad got the right question:
demille. first i thought of an old school hollywood legend and then i thought
about what monuments have brought legal challenges. since cecil b. demille
did two versions of the ten commandments it seemed like the logical choice.
i get pretty psyched whenever i get something that ken jennings doesn't.
made an appt. with a doctor for tomorrow. hopefully i'll get some physical
therapy and it'll help me heal correctly.
forgot to write about my ride to work last thursday. i was on my bike going
to work in the morning and i was daydreaming about the arrival of my digital
camera. i was riding without my hands on the handlebars as i usually do.
i approached the fifth of six stop signs along the way, looked for approaching
cars, and ran the stop sign. as soon as i did this i saw a bike cop start
up after me. i put my hands on the handlebars and pulled over. he asked
if i knew why he stopped me and i said yes. he asked if i had ID and i
said no. he asked for my information and i gave it to him. he asked if
i knew my id number and i told it to him. he asked where i was going and
i told him i was going to work. he asked if i biked to work everyday and
i said "yes, and i run that stop sign every single day." he laughed and
said "at least you're honest." as he relayed my information back to the
station he said that running a stop sign is $122 fine (last time i got
one, about four years ago, i think, it was about $30-40) and since i didn't
have my hands on the handlebars it's another $122, for a total of $244.
then he said that if the background check came back without any warrants
he'd let me off with a warning. sure enough my record was clear, he said
goodbye, and i said thanks.
you don't know how much you use your back until it hurts with every strain.
it's getting better now. i'll probably take another day off because i still
can't bend, but i can look down at my feet again and getting off the couch
doesn't hurt like it used to. i've watched a good number of movies, but
not an insane number. sitting in this chair hurts so i haven't reviewed
any of them yet.
back feels a little better and my cold has gotten a little worse. told
my boss i wouldn't be in tomorrow and he was very understanding.
i'm in more pain right now than i think i've ever been in before. i'm sick
and yesterday my back was feeling sore so i did some light stretching.
apparently i did something pretty bad because my back started to feel progressively
worse and worse. i soaked in the tub with some epsom salts hoping it would
relax my back, but it just made it worse. there aren't any comfortable
positions. moving hurts all the time. sleeping was awful. i feel like shit.
this is definitely the worst my back has ever been. sitting here typing
hurts so i'm going to lay down.
feel like i'm coming down with a cold. that's pretty funny since i called
in sick yesterday and have been thinking quite a bit lately about the fact
that i haven't been sick all year. it's possible that it's just allergies
starting to kick in. we'll see.
so, i've decided that i'm leaving davis in a few months and i'll help my
grandmother sell off the 30,000 books that are left from the book business.
after doing that for a month i'm going to move to austin and live with
meryl for a few months. after that i'll move back to california, probably
the bay area. this plan, in various forms, has been on my mind for about
two months now. meryl got a good offer in austin and i got a good offer
in la so it seems to work out all around.
i think that i'll tell my boss about my departure in a month or two, giving
him at least one month's notice. sorta sucks for tower because i'll be
gone during the month that brings in more than 50% of the year's profits.
i feel a little bad about that. at the same time, tower treats its employees
like they're replaceable so i don't feel that bad about it. i also feel
bad that i'll be leaving john because he's become a pretty good friend
over the last 9 months or so. for all my other friends the move won't mean
much since i don't really see them regularly anyway.
i wonder if, 150 years from now, people will look back on a custom of ours
and view it the same way that we view duels. maybe by then war will be
as antiquated as personal duels are now. har har. that's a good one.
my digital camera arrived today. it's pretty freaking cool. it'll be nice
to have some time off this weekend to get to try it out a bit.
didn't do much today. watched a couple movies and slept. also drank a lot
updated movies list.
meryl amazes me more and more every day, she's just fantastic.
i wonder why humanity seems so eager to look for signs of the end of the
world. it seems that there's always a sizable contingent of people who
are looking for signs that the end is nigh. i'll admit that it sometimes
seems like we're teetering on the edge of civilization (potential water
supply problems, global warming, nuclear proliferation, growing gulf between
rich and poor, fossil fuels running low, etc.), but i don't think any of
those things mean the end of our civilization or the world. i suppose that
we're technically closer to the end than we ever have been, but that doesn't
necessarily mean it's actually going to happen. but what do i know?
""If we can't respond faster than this to an event we saw coming across
the Gulf for days, then why do we think we're prepared to respond to a
nuclear or biological attack?" asked former House Speaker Newt Gingrich,
called into work sick today. i'm not really sick, but i really didn't feel
like going to work. i have a lot of stuff that i want to do and i've just
been tired lately. i'm pretty sure this is the first time i've called in
sick this year so i don't feel too bad about it.
drafted my fantasy football team last night. at the last minute my arch
nemesis (marc) attempted to change the scoring system. this is completely
unfair because people likely had their draft picks ordered according to
the original rules and also because the sanders brothers were out of town
so their pre-draft rankings would have been worthless as a result of such
a change. marc tries to do this kind of stuff all the time, though, so
i shouldn't be surprised. his karl rovian attempt at rule changes was thwarted
thanks in large part to my threat to delete my team (which would have canceled
the draft altogether). fucking politics.
after the little brother show john and i were in my parking lot loading
my speakers into his car (i gave him my two big speakers because i don't
use them very often and his speakers are crappy). while we were outside
talking i heard someone walking behind me (at this point it was about 01:00)
and john was looking over my shoulder sort of oddly. i turned around and
saw some girl stumbling through the parking lot. she had a very uneven,
wobbly gait and it was pretty clear that she was either very drunk or very
very tired. i looked at john and commented on the fact that she looked
fucked up. then i asked "she's not going to drive, is she?" sure enough
she got into her car and started up the car (after one failed attempt).
i asked john if we should do something and he said "i don't know. i'm staying
away from that one." i think we both felt as though we should intervene,
but neither of us is very forward and so we didn't. she backed out of her
spot further than she needed to and brushed up against a bush near the
apartment wall. then she pulled out of the parking lot with her headlights
off and we didn't see her after that. i think i should have done something
about it, but i'm not very confrontational. calling the cops wouldn't have
done any good either. ideally i would have run after her before she got
into her car, stolen her keys and just run off. that would have been funny
and would have avoided the unpleasantness of dealing with a drunk stranger.
so far as i can tell from the davis enterprise website, no one was injured
recently as a result of a drunk driving accident, so that's good.
i asked john what it was like to be drunk - are you aware of the fact that
you shouldn't be driving and you just don't care? do you feel in complete
control? essentially he restated what i've heard before - it emboldens
you to do something, which you know in the back of your mind, you shouldn't
so it seems that poker has increased in popularity the last couple years
because of the televised tournaments. poker is a fine game, but i find
it funny that so many people start getting into it after it's on television.
to me, it reinforces the idea that our culture is largely shaped from the
top-down. we got a bunch of poker supplies (chips and cards mostly) at
tower the other day. almost all of them said "perfect for texas hold em."
chips and cards can be used for fucking anything, but they're marketing
it for texas hold em because that's the most popular poker game these days.
it just makes me feel like we're all sheep and i don't like that. again,
though, poker is a fine game and there's nothing wrong with being interested
in it. it's simple, but infinitely interesting, that's what makes it so
cool. it's just the top-down aspect of it that i hate. it's like janet
jackson's nipple jewelry which sold thousands of units after the super
bowl fiasco. monkey see, monkey do.
getting into the fourth season of curb your enthusiasm. came out on dvd
on tuesday. it's not as good as seinfeld largely because the cast isn't
as diverse and because the plotlines are so similar, but it's a very funny
show with humor that ranges from the subtle to the absurd from the politically
incorrect to the cerebral. good shit.
updated movies i own list.
bought that movie blow today because it was cheap and i remember liking
it. i was checking who the director was and read his bio on imdb.com.
i started reading about how he died after played a basketball game, he
was less than forty years old and left two young kids behind. it made me
understandably sad. then i read this: "Coroners announce that a small amount
of cocaine found in Demme's body may have caused his fatal thrombotic heart
attack and have ruled the death accidental." if you've seen Blow you know
that the end makes it pretty clear what the human impact of living fast
is. Depp loses his daughter because of cocaine and it seems that the same
happened to demme. it's still sad, but it's sad for a different reason
now. to me, knowing that makes it sad because demme obviously had a good
deal of information on the real consequences of drug use and still persisted
in his use. i know from intimate experience that kicking this sort of habit
is difficult, to say the least. but i also just can't shake the strong
convictions i have regarding your responsibility as a parent. to me, when
you have kids you lose a large chunk of your freedom. you're not living
just for yourself anymore, you're living for them; and as a result you
have to consider the consequences of your actions relative to them.
a lot of times i write things on here as if people actually think about
their impact on the world and as if the world were pure and held the potential
for perfection. none of those things are true, though. most people barely
even think about the impact of their actions on themselves, much less those
around them. the world is anything but pure. and the world rejects aspirations
of perfection. living with those realities is often difficult for me.
money isn't all that bad. after all, if it weren't for money the u.s. and
china would probably be at each other's necks.
updated movies list.
i have a lot to write about, but it's already 1:24 so i need to sleep.
new orleans is so fucked up right now. i gotta say, though, that city officials
there completely dropped the ball. that said, part of the problem down
there comes from a lack of federal funds over the years to prepare for
just discovered that they added a bunch of kurosawa films on netflix. must
be multi-region discs or something because these films aren't available
in the u.s. i'm going to have to get them all.
i think that there needs to be a lot more unity and a lot less division
when it comes to ideology in all realms. i think that i'm guilty of this
at times, but i try to refrain from us/them rhetoric. it bothers me that
even intelligent and kind people have gotten to the point where they're
blaming one group of people for all the ills of the world. it's easy to
do, especially when you're in like-minded company, but i also think it's
detrimental. blaming all the country's problems on republicans, for example,
though mostly true, isn't helpful and doesn't do what is most necessary
in politics: find a common ground. this is one thing that right wingers
do very well. they find a common thread of values and campaign together
on those values. i think it's one reason that there's a perception of inconsistency
with the right. you have evangelicals and right to lifers joining nra members
and hawks and pro-death penalty people, and it seems like there's
a contradiction there, but really they all hate gays so it works out pretty
well for them. politics makes strange bedfellows, they say. this might
be a bad example, but it's the kind of thing that needs to happen more
often, though hopefully for a more worthy cause. left wingers are often
too puritanical (myself included) and as a result we aren't able to find
a common, unifying cause. that said, i still support people who choose
to vote their hopes, rather than their fears and i still would rather vote
green than democrat.
i think that some of this stems from being tired of bush's america. we're
just so split right now and it's as bad as it's ever been in my lifetime.
and division pisses me off - whether it comes from louis farrakhan or randi
rhodes or george bush - i just think it needs to stop. i'm not saying we
should live in a blameless society, rather, that we should be selective
in our derision. i guess i'm just tired of people blindly attacking someone
who is perceived to be on the opposite side. bush is a fuck up, a big one,
but not everything he's done has been negative (when i think of an example
i'll try to let you know). people just seem to get caught up in bashing
their enemy and none of that seems to be conducive to progress, if anything
it seems to slow it. that's all i'm trying to say.
it's late, i'm tired and rambling.
tomorrow i'll comment on poker and tell the sad story of a random drunk
girl i saw outside my apartment last night.
just got back from the little brother show in SF. went with john. pretty
good show overall, though it wasn't great. josh davis (aka dj shadow) was
in the crowd. i was about 10 yards from him. that was novel.
talked to john about music, the music industry, moving, popular culture,
meryl, hot celebrities, race relations and other stuff. i can't think of
many famous (to the average american) asians off the top of my head right
now, but the ones that come to mind (bruce lee, william hung, lucy liu
and jackie chan) are all stereotypes and i find that to be rather disappointing.
asian culture is amazingly diverse and storied and yet of the four asian
celebrities that first come to mind (granted, i have a bad memory) three
have been in kung fu films and one is a stereotype: a short, geeky, non-enunciating,
engineering student who is infamous for his poor singing.
just thought of yao ming, but you get the point.
i'm tired and should get some rest.