Sunday, February 29, 2004

More snow pictures

Before I went to work I swung by Freedom Park

There was a snow babe there

This was the view out our window at work

Leaving work I took this lame sunset shot

Saturday, February 28, 2004

No more Mr. Nice Guy

A couple of weeks back a co-worker asked me if I would work for him on Satruday, February 28th so he could do something with his son. I said sure. This would involve me having Friday off and then working on Saturday while he worked my Friday and had the Saturday off. Naturally yesterday was a snow day so my co-worker didn't have to work and he's off today and here I am stuck at work. The son of a gun. That is the last time I ever do anything nice for anybody ever again. Ah well, at least there is a nice sunny snowscape out the window here. I'll take a picture of it and post it tomorrow.

Friday, February 27, 2004

Winter Storm '04

Pretty cool snowstorm we got here in Charlotte yesterday. Reminds me of the old days when I was a lad in northern Michigan. Here's a few pics I took this morning while walking down to the Harris Teeter to buy some soda and a frozen pizza.

Thursday, February 26, 2004


It's snowing like hell and they haven't closed the library yet? What gives?

Wednesday, February 25, 2004

Wha' Happened?

The other night I heard Dennis Miller say, on his new show, that we shouldn't worry about who we lock up. I paraphrase: Let's lock up who we think might be guilty and when we get them all then we'll decide what is right and what is wrong.

Who is this person? Dennis Miller used to be one of the most insightful and intelligent comedians in the country. I really find it interesting how the 9/11 attacks completely changed how people think. Sure the attacks were horrible but some countries lose twice as many people every few years during major earthquakes. We killed more people in Iraq. I think, like Steve Dallas from Bloom County, that aliens kidnapped Dennis Miller and then reversed his brain.
Holy Cow

It's now official. Everything causes cancer. I might quit smoking or drinking but I ain't gonna quit cunnilinguining. Is that a real word?
Stupid ass war on drugs

How can you get indicted on a federal charges just by helping a junky friend by some cocaine? That's just dumb.
What the hey?

Just read this story via James' blog. Sexual encroachment? What the hell? Sounds to me like the old horny bastard was hitting on her. Shit, I went through tougher experiences during my freshman year of high school. I think I'd rather fend off the advances of an old horny poet than have five seniors dunk my head in the toilet.

Sexual encroachment? By the way it's defined in this article it's an advance by anyone who physically revolts you. Does that mean that the sloppy drunk women at the Comet Grill a couple of years ago that played with my hair was encroaching me? Soon, if you you raise your eyebrow to a co-worker you will be accused of "sexual suggestion." I think Paglia is right, she is trivializing the real problems others have with this silly accusation.

Tuesday, February 24, 2004

Maybe it's too big?

You know how school and city buses sometimes wear away the grass at some intersections due to their back wheels rolling up over the curb because buses are too big for the intersection? There is a spot at one of the entrances to the library with the same pattern of worn grass. Today I saw what caused the grass to be worn away when a giant SUV bumped over the curb to enter the parking lot.
Why I love P2P file sharing

I just downloaded a few songs by a cool band that Billy from work told me about. They are called the Constantines. I have seen a couple of reviews of the band that called them a combination of Fugazi and Bruce Springsteen. How can you not be intrigued by that? I am listening to the songs I downloaded right now. You know, I don't have enough songs to burn and the music is really dang good. I think I will buy their new album this weekend. Damn file sharing is destroying music!

Monday, February 23, 2004

Jiminy Crickets

Today as I was pulling out of my apartment complex for my rough 12-minute drive to work I witnessed a white Hummer cruise down Park Rd passing cars in the left and right lane. He was speeding and changing lanes without signalling. God, what an asshole.

Saturday, February 21, 2004

A rooma zoom zoom

If you have been paying even the least bit of attention to these secret and heart wrenching posts then you know I have a new car and I am totally gassed about. Me and my hotrod are still in our honeymoon stage. In fact a couple of days ago I put the first bumper sticker on the new car. I put a sticker I received from Bloodshot Records. It was included in the last order they sent me. If you like music that is earthy and real I recommend checking the label out. (Jesus Ed, you say to yourself, we get it. You like Bloodshot Records. Move on to something else like quotes from old papers)

I hadn't really taken the new car on what I would call a road trip yet. I've been kinda trying to save a few bucks before I did that. I like to be sure that when I leave town that I have enough dough to get back in case I run into trouble. Now that I no longer have a credit card (that I can use that is, I have a credit card account I am paying off slowly. Oh, so slowly. Slow like evolution.) So today I drive about 80 miles to Rockingham, NC to watch the NASCAR series qualify for Sunday's race.

Today I was off and all this week I was considering driving down to Rockingham to watch the Nextel Cup (formerly Winston Cup) drivers qualify for Sunday's race. I really had a strong desire to go to Rockingham sometime this weekend. Up until this season the track hosted two Cup races. This year, for the first time, they are only hosting one race. The big reason that the track lost a race is that races there don't sellout. It was financially wise to move Rockingham's second race to California where there will be 150,000 asses in the seats instead of the paltry 70,000 asses that will be planted in Rockingham this weekend. It's understandable but it's really sad for the sport, I think, because the races at Rockingham feature better competition than the track in California. Ah well, it's out of my hands. I can't go to the Busch race tomorrow because I have plans and I just couldn't afford to go to Sunday's race. Today's trip to the track was my little way of saying that I like Rockingham and I hope it stays a part of the sport.

A second reason I had a desire to go to Rockingham was that going to Rockingham for a NASCAR race was the last thing my step-father and I did together before he died. That was over ten years ago. Call it a piligrimage on two levels.

I won't bore with a lot of details but I will say I was disppointed that the weather was so chilly. There were no ladies wearing revealing clothing that was inappropriate for their body type. That's half the reason for going to a NASCAR event. I guess I'll have to wait for qualifying in May in Charlotte.

I will include the leasty blurry photograph that I took today of race cars going a rooma zoom zoom.

Thursday, February 19, 2004

The wacky ole Harris Teeter

Today in my usual rush to work I swung by the nearby Harris Teeter grocery store to buy some frozen food and a soda pop. After swiftly moving through the self checkout line I was moving out of the store and heard a guy mutter to himself "nice tits" as he was entering. Assuming that he wasn't referring to me I scanned the area and did not see any tits that required an audible appreciation. I often walk through the Harris Teeter and see boobies worthy of praise but I say it in my inside voice, not outloud so strangers can hear it.

After climbing in my hotrod and firing the beast up I was sitting at the exit, attempting to turn left onto Colony and I saw an attractive blond woman in one of those expensive foreign station wagons picking her nose while turning into the Harris Teeter parking lot. She really had her finger up that nose. Boy oh boy, she was drilling for oil. I don't recommend picking your nose while driving but I guess it's safer than talking on the phone.
Howdy there

Just got done watching, for the umpteenth time, the movie called Shaolin Soccer. If Sam has existed on this planet on this current go-round for no other reason then he will forever be remembered by me as the person who introduced me to the genius of Stephen Chow. I don't remember if I have metioned the movie before on this blog but it came out in Hong Kong back in 2001. Initially I was expecting a cheezy move despite Sam's reassurances that it was a great film. I remember Sam didn't give me a lot of details concering the film because it's almost impossible describe. It's a martial arts movie. A soccer movie. It's a comedy. A romance. It's about the relationships of brothers. It's about the nature and technology. It shows the poverty of Hong Kong. It's sentimental. It's harsh. It's has matrix-style computer action scenes. It's a parody. It holds up to repeated viewings like a good Coen brother's movie. Let's just say it's original. This is just my way of saying that I got my DVD version of the movie straight from an Ebay seller in Hong Kong. Now I can watch this piece of art any dang time I wants to.

A shout out

To second Ann's endorsement Dave Chappelle might have the funniest show in television right now. Laugh outloud score for tonight's show: 10+

Shout out another one

In today's entry Tom mentioned how much he loves the song Ghost Riders in duh Sky and how he prefers Johnny Cash's version. When I borrowed indefinately my grandmothers Johnny Cash tapes that song was the first one that really grabbed me and made me a Cash fan.

Tuesday, February 17, 2004

Horrible little bastard kids

I never was one of those kids that tortured animals for kicks. The closest I ever got was kicking over ant hills. Like Calvin I used to enjoy watching them scurry for cover after my foot of destruction swept through. More fascinating was the fact they would have the entrance repaired in just a matter of minutes when I went back to check on my work. I don't count fishing as animal torture. It's their own fault for biting the hook. I mean, how often do you see food hovering before you face?

Horrible things I have witnessed other children do to animals

1) At daycamp a few boys spent an afternoon burning a big ole grasshopper with a magnifying glass. I can still picture it's tortured brown body held in a boy's hand. It's legs were still twitching and they were as proud of their creation as some rural artist is of a rusty garbage sculpture.

2) Again a few boys spent about an hour trying to stick a single firecrackers up the rear end of a garter snake. They were not successful and no one lost a finger and the snake eventually got away.

I can't think of anymore. Initially I thought there would be more. I can't think of anymore. Maybe I hung out with the right people.

The time I was the a horrible bastard teenager

One afternoon my friend Alan and I were cruising around in my orange Volkswagen Beetle and Alan noticed that the floor of my car was covered with debris. It always was and Alan usually spent the time I spent putting gas in my car emptying the garbage into the trash cans at the pumps so he could have a clear place to put his feet. This afternoon we were cruising down the road I live on and the level of shit on the floor of the passenger side of my car was especially high. Alan started bitching about the garbage and I said "Quit complaining. If you don't like it, dump the shit out." I stopped the car about half a mile from an intersection. He then proceded to dump all the garbage from my car onto the road. Once our littering ended we drove off. As were nearing the intersection a car coming toward us slowed and flagged us down. I stopped and in the car was a middle-aged Polish guy whose wife used to babysit me and my sister. He tore into us.

"What the fuck do you two think you are doing? Get you asses back there and pick that shit up. I don't need you little fucking bastards littering in front of my home."

He was furious and scared the shit out of us. I think I squeaked out a "Yes, sir." We turned around and picked up all the garbage. I remember we felt like shit when we realized what we had done. It was irresponsible and we knew it. That wasn't the kind of people we wanted to be. I never did like that guy that yelled at us but I have always been thankful to us that he cared enough about the beauty of Northern Michigan enough to scream at a couple of punks.

Thursday, February 12, 2004

Saddest picture ever?

The headline for this photo from yahoo news reads as follows: "A duckling looks around before being killed by Chinese health workers at a farm in Tianjin after the northern port city reported a suspected bird flu case."

Say goodbye to the isssues

A few days ago I heard an interesting story on NPR (at least I think it was NPR. Sometimes I am inundated by so much information that I can’t remember where I heard something.) and it mentioned that the royal family in the United Kingdom may be a good thing for politics in the country. Those that are interested in the sex lives of the rich and famous tend to follow the ridiculous behavior of the pampered royal family. Any personal, thereby not newsworthy, personal misbehavior by their politicians is ignored unless it actually affects national security. What a novel concept.
Jesus, Mary and Joanne

I heard on NPR news this morning that Massachusetts lawmakers debated the same-sex marriage thing for six hours. Six hours? Six hours?!?! Six hours?!?!?!?!!? Surely there are more important things to decide in Massachusetts than whether or not boys marry boys and girls marry girls. Like say hunger or, uh...unemployment or AIDS or...let's see... maybe education or safer roads or executing people that drive giant SUV's. All kinds of stuff more important than who wants to marry who.

I remember a story from the show Real People that was about a male/female married couple who both wanted a sex change operation. At one point I remember the guy was mostly female and the girl was still mostly female. At what point would that union become “same sex?” Only in this country could a state legislature actually debate this topic for a full day and the people don’t storm the gates and spank their fat bloated behinds.

Honestly, I know I have mentioned this before in this blog but you have to hope there will come a day when this is just not an issue. I hope I am alive during the time folks look back and laugh at the idiocy of a people that once got their panties in a wad over the fact that someone might be in love with a person that has the same package downstairs as they do.

But until then middle American cow people moo their way happily around the non-issues like this one and whether or not stem cells have a soul while nothing real or important is debated. Ass heads.

Wednesday, February 11, 2004

Oh, Internet

One thing I dig about this internet thing is how easy it is to contact people you admire. A few days ago I saw that a couple members of one of my favorite bands, the Waco Brothers had started a new band called Dollar Store. I'm sure I have mentioned the Waco Brothers before. They are one of the many projects by my favorite Mekon, Jon Langford.

Once I saw that Dollar Store existed and they were releasing an album on Bloodshot Records I shot an email off to Dean Schlabowske who fronts the band. Mainly my email said you write great music and I hope your new band comes somewhere near Charlotte when you tour (fat chance). The next day I got an email from the man and he, predictably, said they had no plans to come down here but he would keep me posted. Oh well, maybe I'll get lucky and they'll perfom in Atlanta or Chapel Hill and I can make the road trip many music lovers that live in Charlotte have made over the years.

But it's still nice to have even this tiny little connection to an artist you respect. It's like an affirmation that they actually do exist outside of their albums or books.

Other people of interest I have emailed and gotten a response from

Christopher Moore (writer)
Jon Langford (mad genius)
Al Franken (his was the best, he wrote "thank you for you kind comments. Please don't mistake this response as a welcoming to future correspondence or friendship, it's not.)
David Brin (science fiction writer. I tried to interview him for a paper I was writing on the future of publishing and he politely blew me off.)

Tuesday, February 10, 2004

Hoo doggy

So I got my cable back on Monday morning. This allowed me to watch the re-showing last night of the Bud Shoot Out that took place at Daytona on Saturday. I was also able to get back on the newsgroups and find me some more music.

There is a sad note to this re-establishing of my cable connection. I lost my free HBO. Several years ago when I first ordered the cable for my apartment the technician who installed my cable noticed that I had HBO coming through clear as a bell. I said to him, "I didn't order HBO. Are they going to charge me for it?"

He said "Probably not."

"Are they going to disconnect it?" I axed.

"Probably not. Hey, have a good Thanksgiving." He left.

This was the day before Thanksgiving and in the afternoon. I was either his last call or close to it and he just did not care if I was getting free HBO or not. Bless his heart. Sometimes we profit from the apathy of the American worker. Now my HBO is scrambled. There is no way I am going to pay for it. It's going to stay that way unless Wendell wants to cough up the extra dough.

By the way

Do not rent, borrow or attempt to watch the Kevin Costner directed movie called "Open Range." It is the absolute worst movie I have seen in a long time. The story has been done a million times (that in itself is no reason to not enjoy a western), the dialogue must have been written by an 8th grader that has read a few Louis L'amour books and the acting is petrified wooden. The character which Costner destroys is some kind of reformed killer like Shane or the preacher from Pale Rider with the stoicism of every strong but silent character that Clint and John Wayne have played dozens of times. I guess his idea of portraying the strong silent cowboy is to freeze his face into a blank manniquen's scowl. God, what a fucking shitty ass movie.

Friday, February 06, 2004

I want my cable back

The day before yesterday I came, turned on my roomie's computer and attempted to access the internet. No dice. I then walked over to my TV, I still owe a friend $100 for, to see if it was working. No dice. I figured Wendell and I had waited too long to pay the cable bill again so I called TimeWarner so that I could pay our large overdue balance over the phone with my bank card. For once it was not are delinqency that caused our cable to go kaput. After walking me through all the troubleshooting I had already done the operator determined that my cable was broken. The will be by Monday to fix it. Hopefully.

Later I examined the cable connection to the wall and noticed that this large gameboard that Wendell keeps behind the couch, which has never left its postion behind the couch, was leaning against the outlet. I think I know what is wrong now. See accumulating goods is bad. Wendell's need to possess has kept me from stealing music for two days now. Wendell, you bastard.

Tuesday, February 03, 2004

My first team meeting

Today I went to a meeting. It was a gathering of the six people on the books on tape team. Starting in a few months we are going to lower the amount of money we spend on our standing order and the team is going to start purchasing books. Pretty exciting, I think. I like buying stuff.

One amusing thing happened. I have noticed over the years that our book on tape collection has hardly any science fiction. When I mentioned that silence fell across the room like some soundless blanket. No matter, I will not give up. We will get more SF titles. Maybe if I call it speculative fiction the rest of the team will pay attention. It may be that they think all I want to do is buy speculative fiction books. Not true. I just want more than what we have now: almost nothing.

I will give you a for intance. David Brin has written some of the best literate science fiction over the last 20 years. How many of his books do we have on tape? Zero. Michael Swanwick? Nada. Orson Scott Card? One and it's not even one of his SF titles. No "Ender's Game" on tape? No excuse. This shall change if the others don't smash me down hard and quick.

Monday, February 02, 2004


I see there is some kind of pointless and hypocritical uproar over Janet Jackson showing her pasty-covered booby on TV during our most holy of holidays, the Superduper Bowl. Even the worthless head of the FCC, Powell the younger Uncle Tom, has put in his two cents. Ya'll seem to have forgotten the real obscenity of the halftime show: it fucking sucked ass. It was a parade of mediocrity. It was pure unrefined shit. It was the television equivalent of the hog farm shit pond.