Saturday, February 22, 2003

Sitting here, unable to hear, discussing with Charlie the messy state of my union. This not being able to hear thing is making me depressed and irritable. I'm really scared that I won't have my hearing back in time for my show Thursday, and that I may have to not perform, making it the second show that hasn't happened for me. I tried to play a little today, but it's hard to practice when you can't hear. Sergei told me the Ruber family secret way of dealing with it... put a heating pad on your... wait, if I tell you, it isn't a secret, now is it? Well, screw you, then pal, trying to extract information from me like some kinda little whiny stool pigeon guy with big ears and a large gap between my front teeth. Stinkin' bastages.

Wednesday, February 19, 2003

Still can't hear yet. Thanks for asking. It feels like stuff is moving, but I guess after 3 months of sick without much treatment, there's a lot of stuff. Are you there God, It's Me, J-Ro --- Please let me hear again. Not that it will get me to go to synagogue or any of the bullshit other people say when they ask you for stuff. I don't like to lie like that. Yep. That is all. Thanks, chief.
I am playing with this crazy HTML source code. I do not know HTML code. It's like randomly banging a hammer on the desk in the dark, and i think I just may hurt my thumb somehow. D'oh!

Tuesday, February 18, 2003

Everything's Alright Forever - originally a journal entry from 9:36am Tuesday, Feb 18. I added a couple sentences here and there. But I didn't delete any words or phrases.

Let me recap my weekend for you. It went something like this:
woke up Friday afternoon unable to hear out of my "good" ear, and so whenever I speak, it seems like it's not me, but instead some scared child. Needless to say, i was quite freaked. I figured it might just take a day to fix itself. How wrong was I! So I worked Friday night, my usual shift, 7pm-7am. Working a 12 hour shift when you can't hear anything sucks. So by Saturday morning, I was reasonably wiggy, and so I basically figured I should try to see a doctor after work, since by the time I woke up, it would be too late to go to the doctor.

Because I was extremely worried now that the 2 months of being sick finally was hitting me where it hurts -- my "good" ear -- I decided to bite the financial bullet and visit a doctor, even though I have no health insurance at the moment. Now was also the first time I could AFFORD to visit a doctor, since I was unemployed for 2 -1/2 months between November and January. So I went, and when I got there, I filled out the usual paperwork and junk, and the receptionist explained that it would be $89 just for the visit, etc. I said okay, since I really had no choice at 9 o'clock on a Saturday. I get in there, and the doctor's assistant weighs me, takes my temperature, checks my blood pressure... at least those stats are good. Then the doc comes in, I tell him what's up, so he looks at my ears, listens to my breathing and looks up my nose and makes me say "ahhhh" and says "Yep, you definitely have a sinus infection. But I have enough samples I can give you to treat it, due to the severity and how long you've had it." Now, even though I kinda felt like I was cheating on my usual doctor, he was good. He's got steady hands, doesn't stutter and I'm sure that if he was taking my blood that he wouldn't blow the vein. Not that doctor's take blood tests themselves nowadays, usually they send you to the lab, so someone else can do it, and they can charge your insurance more. But today, the new doctor was my hero. So he loaded me up with a 14 day supply of antibiotics, supercalifragilisticmaximum decongestants, and nasal spray, I paid the 89 bucks and went on my merry way.

As luck would have it, the doctor was right next door to Pool Doctor, so I decided to pay my good friend Paul a visit at work. We chatted for several minutes, as he went across the street to get coffee at Dunkin Donuts. After a few minutes of conversation, he had to get to work, and I had to get home, so I could take my meds and finally go to sleep. Of course, I ended up coming home and playing Arkanoid on the Super Nintendo (he won because I got the crappy controller that only kinda works) until he left for work. So i got to sleep around 11:30. Quite the long day.

Woke up Saturday evening at 4:30 or so, so I didn't have a lot of time to do stuff before work. Went to work and Ilene called in sick (she left early Friday night because her 2-yr old son was sick and barfed all over her and stuff), so it was just me and Triple C minding the library. Not that it matters, as it will be just the two of us starting next week, with Ilene moving to the offsite library. Otherwise, just a typical worknight, albeit a crappy weekend in general. Got home in the morning, and stayed up way too late typing a blog entry and IMing various people who had just woken up. After finishing said entry when I just became to tired to spew forth anymore words. So I tried to post it, the screen in the browser went blank and gave me a network error message. So naturally, I was too upset to even think about losing it, since I stayed up so late tryping it and sacrificing sleep. Finally, at around Noonish, I went to sleep.

Sunday night, I slept til 5:30. Yoinks. Too late to watch an episode of "Ed." So I watched a repeat of "Dharma & Greg" on the WB while eating dinner. At least, I think that was Sunday. No, that was Friday night. I ate no dinner Sunday night. Anyways, I got to work as we were all wondering about what the snow would be like. The rest of the crew went to Bennigan's for break at 9ish to send off Ilene in proper style, since it was her last night on the crew. Someone had to stay behind and mind the library. Someone is me. But that's okay, as they brought me back the Dubliner I requested -- mmmm, steak and shrimp! Besides, I did some work and grooved to some Flin Flon and +/- while checking email and message boards. Of course, no one seems to post to the boards on weekends. Bah!

So it started snowing, and it snowed like a motherfucker! We had to move our cars to the South parking lot (I always park in the North lot). That was at like 2am and there was about 8 inches or so on the ground already. That did not bode well. So, of course, by the time I got out at 7am, it was ridiculous. But, it was not without it's life-affirming moments; as I was leaving, going out the way I never do -- to the South parking lot -- a guy walking in says "Good morning," and I say "Is it really?" He walks closer, and I look up and realize it's my old buddy Peer Kuhnt from college. I had thought I heard someone page him over the intercom last week, but I shrugged it off, because I usually mishear things, often to comedic effect. So I just said "Holy shit! Peer Kuhnt! How the hell are ya?" and he briefly encapsulated the last 5 years or so in a nutshell and says "What about you? Last I heard was you were going out to Washington state with some girl. How did that work out?" "Well," I told him, "We lived together for four years, three of them in Seattle, and it was great out there. And then we moved to Buffalo when she got into grad school at UB, and after a year or so there, she dumped me and I came crawling back home." "Sorry, man," he said. "Ehh, it's life, ya know? Besides, I'm happier now and things are going well."

It's just so funny, as how only the morning before this encounter, I had mused about how people drift in and out of our lives, and then BAM! I bump into Peer Kuhnt at work, of all places. It really is a small world, and no matter how much you travel, it all seems to come full circle. It seems almost like I hit a Life-Reset Button, and the last 7 years magically vanished, except I still remember it all. I mean, I'm starting a new career (again), I'm making difficult decisions -- like quitting my last job before having another one lined up -- and I'm seriously connecting to people in a way I haven't done since college. Maybe it's because I am more connected to myself. It sure took a lot to find me, I'll tell you what.

Maybe what Molly said about me was right. When we started communicating again, via email, last year or so (I can't keep track as the years go by so quickly), I was surprised she would be talking to me at all after the shit I pulled in college. Granted, back then she was a little uptight, but man, I was a loose canon! Rage seemed to be my superpower, like Ben Stiller's character in "Mystery Men." I blew up at her on a road trip from Oswego to Albany because she wanted to listen to the mixtape that had "How Soon Is Now?" by the Smiths on it, because I was so sick of hearing it at that point, because she and Annette (a different one than in my forthcoming book) requested it every week at the club where I would DJ. When I was having a shouting match with my then-girlfriend, Molly made the mistake of trying to argue with me and I threw a roll of toilet paper, whie she was standing no more than 6 inches from me, at the floor because I was trying to contain my bubbling rage, and when Maureen (the roommate) asked me to leave her room, I did so respectfully, and proceeded to twist an innocent ironing board into a very bent ironing board.

But anyway, Molly had told me, in an email, that it seemed like I was uncomfortable in my own skin back then. I honestly couldn't disagree with her. I hadn't thought that before. But reflecting on those years, I could totally catch glimpses of it. I think it really helped me to hear that. Recently, we were having a really great conversation over the phone, and I think we are way more similar as people now than I ever would have thought back when we were constantly seemingly at odds. I think that statement speaks well of both of us and how much we've grown.

And then there was the way Shaggy found me via the web several months ago, when I typed "Crazy Pablo" in a search engine, and I popped up as a result of the Tacowagon (RIP) site. So I got an email, and was overjoyed. Since then, we have hung out once, meeting at the midway point between us in New Paltz, home of one of the ever-wonderful Rhino Records stores. Needless to say, many minutes and dollars were sent there, perhaps to the chagrin of Shaggy's wife and child. But I hadn't been to that store in about 8 or 9 years, and you could tell because of some of the records I bought there that day. The first Straitjacket Fits record on Rough Trade, a four-song Ukrainians 12" EP and a Walkabouts 12" EP, amongst other things. And vinyl was 50% off that day. Double bonus!

Okay, it's time to sleep. I've been typing this for over 4 hours (well, there was an hour-long stint spent shoveling ridiculous amounts of snow so that my dad could drive my mom to work in my brother's car, because it was closest to (ie, ON) the street. Of course, my car will be a real bitch to dig out, as it is on my own driveway, which is blocked by what I estimate to be approximately eight square feet of snow, as the plows were nice enough to plow the middle of the street, leaving either side of the road totally fucked, but it's partially because there was so much snow, and too many people parked on the street). As I finish this off, an acoustic version of "Lazarus" by the Boo Radleys is playing, and I've been seriously considering playing it at my show next week. It's always been one of my favorite songs, but re-listening to it now has really made it connect with me on a whole new level -- the whole reflecting on life and deciding to take charge and live it instead of just sitting on your arse thing going on is so relevant to my current situation and my whole mindset now... I think I could learn it, but I'll need someone to play trumpet on it, or something that sounds like a trumpet. I dunno. Maybe a kazoo will fit the bill. But I need a kazoo cradle, like the harmonica cradle made popular by Bob Dylan and Neil Young...and remember kids, "Don't go playing where the doggies go and don't you eat that yellow snow..."

Current Mood: contemplative
Current Music: Boo Radleys - Lazarus EP

Sunday, February 16, 2003

Being for the Benefit of Mr. Kite, I should update this blog. I updated the House of Chicken & Waffles yesterday, though. Or something like yesterday. Every day is tomorrow's yesterday anyway. But yeah, so it's two whole weeks since I last, posted here. Not Catholic, heh heh. My life is the same as it always is, except the hours are different every so often. And the people... there seems to be an everchanging circle of friends and acquaintances that drift in and out on differently-shaped orbits, I suppose you could say. Like that whole deal with Uranus and Pluto trading places and stuff. Some people drift in, others drift out, then they drift out and back in again, and these friends are like Superman and Clark Kent -- never in the same room at the same time; and then you start to wonder if people really do still exist if you don't call them or hear from them in some way or another. I've mused on the topic of two-dimensional extras before, so I won't go back into that, but there's that other type of person, though... the mysterious type. Said person could be a ninja wearing a red question mark for all you know, and they are climbing your roof right now and drugging your puppy so it won't bark... say, what is the differnece between a ninja and a cat burglar, anyway? My guess is a few grand in jewels vs. cool weapons. I just want one of those hooks to climb up things with. Not houses, necessarily, just tall buildings you can grab the roof of with your grappling hook. I wanna grapple. Rapple dapple. You know what I've never understood? Caramel apples. Why? Maybe I'm being presumptuous, but that is just too messy an invention to actually eat. I have never had a caramel apple in my life. I just can't.

But all that aside, it's funny (strange, not ha-ha, maybe a little of both, perhaps?) how people and their roles in your life can change like the atmosphere when the high pressure system moves northeast as the low pressure system moves southeast and they hit each other and you get precipitation... actually, it's not like that at all. Maybe it's more like when you're in Florida for some god-forsaken reason, and there is rain on the other side of the street from where you are standing, staring dumbfounded at the rain that is falling on the other side of the street, but not, however, where you are standing. Whereas most clouds play the zone defense, the rain clouds in Florida like to play the one-on-one defense. Some people play the zone defense in a friendship. They hang around in groups and cover a wide area, but there are big gaps in some places, so you may not see them much for long stretches of time, and trying to tackle them - well, you don't tackle the defense usually, but...hmmm...well, if your friend is playing a zone defense, but you're trying to score time with them, then it's almost the opposite effect. Damn. Well, shit...but for arguments sake...let's make the end zone something else...let's say the end zone is bad. Well, for you, also... Yeah, they leave too big a gap and you can fall through the holes, and for some people (like myself) who are convinced that the world revolves around themselves, this is difficult to handle, and often leads to a number of complexes. It's almost like having too many friends for your own good. And you constantly play catch-up for the weeks or months you've been in absentia.

And then there's the one-on-one friends -- they always seem to be around when you want them to be, and even if they're busy it doesn't seem to matter; things always end up working out, or at least they sort of do. They make you feel like your time is important and valuable. And many of us want to feel that way, but I know plenty of people who cannot hang out one-on-one; they are so uncomfortable with the idea of it. And they hang out in big groups of constantly changing people, to avoid confronting responsibilities, the truth, and ultimately, themselves. And it is sad to me to see people who have such great potential, but can't see it in themselves, or won't. Also, I think that used to be me. But now I don't care what anybody thinks (but secretly I do) because I am finally comfortable with myself, and I know what I am capable of, and I'm pretty confident that I don't suck. But I just want my friends to be happy, at least with themselves.

At this point, I've been up for 19 hours, and I only got 4 hours of sleep yesterday, and I have another 12 hours of work ahead of me tonight. So I have no idea what my point was, except that it's weird the way roles can shift amongst friends. But I guess it's one of those things that keeps life interesting.

Goodnight. I go sleep now.