Saturday, August 23, 2008

Lies about the Japanese

I remember signing online with a free Juno dial up account as a kid. I remember when a friend gave me a link to his personal web site, not as a link pasted in a quick email, but on a scrap of paper--in the days when bookmarks were just lines you typed out in a text file. I remember when savvy users' personal websites consisted of little more than an animated .gif, Nintendo cheat codes, and their favorite jokes about Yoda's balls.

These (many) years later, the "web" has become a different place. Along came high speed connections, Web 2.0, and the glorious maturation of the internet as the new opiate of the masses. Now everyone fills hard drives with MP3's like hot cakes. Baby's are embedded with microchips giving them a social networking IDs before they can even crawl (okay, only in Tokyo).

A few hundred blogs and more than a couple lamentable picture uploads later, the search engines have my number--or at least my URL. Privacy settings are a nuisance to those who don't want to subscribe to your narcissistic drivel and more often than not, turn your page into a complete dead zone. It's tricky territory. I want to share, but not with all the ex-girlfriends, potential employers, and overly sensitive family members who have instant access to the things I'd hoped would just stay lost in the soup.

It makes me feel beat down and uncreative. I suppose these are the natural pitfalls of living in a well-connected global community. I have to get used to living in constant fear that everything I do will be documented on someone's cell phone video and uploaded somewhere.

I hope you guys like watching me pick my nose and will forgive me for my large ass.

Sometimes, I'm grateful for all this openness. I find myself reserving sailor talk for wooing. I don't think pictures of my ding-dong are quite as funny now that my nieces might decide to take the browser out for a spin. Even my friends have started to notice. I'm more careful...and more lame.

I'm jealous of kids who work at Taco Bell and can't type three words without using an expletive. I'm jealous of the people who post videos showing the world degrading videos of their girlfriends. (Not because they're using the internet for it's intended purpose, but for the fact that they have girlfriends). I'm jealous of those who stand tall and are free to be total a-holes without the worry of who might land on their little corner of the internet.

I find my careful habits bleeding over into my regular life. When someone feeds me a line, I no longer make the factual statement, "You're full of crap." I smile, nod, and try to construct a gently worded way to excuse myself from their shenanigans. I evade to not make waves. After all, it wouldn't do to have them stop leaving me glittery comments.

I know I don't need anyone's permission to be crass. I'm an American, imbued with all the sense of entitlement that implies. It just doesn't feel like I'm allowed my normal allotment of mistakes and jerky moments, anymore. There's a cloud of anxiety hanging over the world when you live in an era where everything is saved in someone's cache. Every day feels like a day that will live in infamy.

Maybe I'm just a worrier. I'll stop. Scout's honor.


Okay. Good aimless post. High five. We'll do it again soon. Next time, I'll try to avoid "balls," "ass," "crap," and lies about the Japanese. They're good people who love babies. Who knows? They might even read my blogs.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

If there's one thing I love, it's pandering...

A friend of mine recently complained that my blogs weren't interesting because I usually post short prose instead of personal essays celebrating myself. Sadly, my life is not the stuff of good blogs, but if there's one thing I love, it's pandering. So, I sat down to write one of these more "personal" blogs...


Dear Blog,

Is it hot today, or what? I've been in the same clothes all week. I guess that makes me a conservationist. It's like I always say, "No point in wasting soap if ladies can't find where you live." Same goes for deodorant.

I wonder if anyone's twittered anything exciting. I'll just fire up the old dial up connection and find out. Hey, look! The Health twitter says research proves coffee is good for me. Last week they said it would stop my heart. Oh, sweet! The Orioles won last night. My friend Kris had a good time pushing people over at the skating rink. And woot! has a deal on bluetooth earmuffs. What a way to start the day! I love Twitter.

Better get some breakfast in me. I've got a lot of research, writing, and note taking to do. Let's see...I've got rice and mustard or rice and ketchup. Oooh! There are some jalapenos left. Good thing I bought 45 cans when they were 50 cents each. I'll eat some rice, mustard, and jalapenos. Now, that's what I call a breakfast!

Okay. Enough stuffing my face. Time to write. I'll add more to this later...

...Boy. I sure am terrible at taking little breaks. I get unproductive after a while because I keep doing the same thing over and over for hours. I mean, sometimes I play tunes in the background or check twitter, but I need "real" breaks. I should get away from the computer, or even away from the house. I've lost all imagination for that kind of thing. I used to be really good at finding cool things to do to repair my brain, but these days, I spend as much time as possible just being boring.

Maybe later, I'll write a blog about people smootching or someone making a terrible choice. It's fun to poke around in the lives of characters. I like the little things that make them who they are, even if who they are isn't someone nice. There's usually some small part of me in my stories. It's fun creating something personal, even if other people think it's not.

Wait. Was that passive aggressive?

Okay, back to writing about things for work...

...I'm out of tea. I should make more. Holy crap! It's already lunchtime. I'll put on a pot of rice and stir in some ketchup while the tea is cooling.

So yeah, blog. Now I'm stuffed and feeling a little sleepy. Allergies have bothered me all this week. I think it's going to be a slow, tedious afternoon. I'll check back in later...

...Wesley Crusher just tweeted about how awesome songs from the 80's are. He sure does love 80's music. Oh, and that comic book writer just tweeted something about eating a steak so rare its heart still spews fountains of blood. He's so zany and shocking. Yawn.

Oh well. Back to work.

Whoops. I ate rice with mustard AND ketchup without blogging about it. That was kind of slack. I'll try to do better. The sun's going down, but it's still hot. I've got a fan in the window, but so far, it's not doing much.

I think I should shave and crank some tunes. I've been on an Elvis/Roy Orbison kick lately, but I'm kind of tired of all that. Maybe I'll put on some Ice Cube and Clarence Carter. Why do I always shave so late in the day? It's weird. I need new razors. Mine are dull. Maybe I'll grow my beard out.

Wow. I'm out of tea again. I've gone through so much water and tea today. It's crazy!

I just tweeted about being out of tea because I thought it was too insignificant to send out a mass email about, but too important to keep to myself. I guess I'm blogging about it, too. That pretty much covers all the bases. Aren't you glad you came by my blog to get a glimpse into my life?

I should go to bed, but I have insomnia. My friends are all getting back from exciting evenings on the town. They're signing onto chat applications and ignoring me. Oh, wait! I've got a live one. I'm gonna go chat for a bit. I might post some clever tweets, too.

My friend went to bed after we chatted for an hour about whether it's okay to fart during sex. It's late and I'm beat. I would go to bed, but I still can't sleep. I think I'll look for deals on Macs, even though I can't afford a new computer. I'm too brain dead to do anything else.

Gee, this day has been WILD. I didn't get as much writing done as I would've liked, but I kind of dig this new blogging style. It's filled with so many possibilities. Maybe I'll write another one like this tomorrow. Or I could just copy and paste this one, since all my days are all pretty much like this.

Anywho. I'm going to try to sleep for a few hours.

Goodnight, Blog.




...And that, dear ones, is the reason I don't write those kinds of blogs. There are only so many fascinating insights I can pull from the gold mine that is my life. I sometimes post about dreams and personal reflections here, but it's far from the staple of my blogging life. If I knew how to weave the thread of my autobiography in a way that didn't make it a sleep aid, I'd pay tribute to myself a million times over, but alas, I'm not that guy.

I rarely do anything that would interest others and when I do, it's never interesting to me. I could write about film and video shoots, the wildlife I see, or trips to big cities, but those are exactly the things that exhaust me. It exhausts me just thinking about them. Fiction is more exciting for me. It's a mistake to dismiss fiction as detached and impersonal. Fiction requires the writer to make difficult choices and feel empathy for characters he'd be afraid to know. It forces the writer to face pain, joy, bittersweet remembrance, and hope.

Sometimes my life is like that, too, but on those occasions, it's something I want to keep for myself. Writing about it spoils the magic. You're better off imagining what's in my pants than having me provide the description. Trust me. Turning one's life into a literary topic erodes all the things that make it special. Real life is fun to live out, but it rarely has the makings of a good read. Those mundane moments are better left off the blogs.

Besides, that's what Twitter's for.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

In Dreams

I had a dream last night that I was working on a farm for a guy who hired a hot girl to do basically nothing because he wanted to get in her pants. After sundown, he drove us out to where we were staying. I had a little house and she had a shack with no power. The boss lingered for a bit, hoping the girl would change her mind about staying out there, but finally headed back home to his wife.

I knew the girl didn't have a bed, so I told her she could crash at my place if she wanted. She didn't seem interested, but followed me across the field to my house anyway. I offered her the couch or the bed in the next room, but she didn't answer. Instead, she poured some coke out on my desk and did a few lines. After that, she went from despondent to bored. She had been high all day and I'd not noticed.

She sat beside me on the bed and told me I could sleep with her if I paid her. Then, she kind of gave up on the idea of doing it for money and started taking her clothes off. She was beautiful and sad. We made love in the dark and then fell asleep. I think she only did it because she wanted to sleep on the nicer bed.

The next morning, she stayed at the house while I went to work. Late in the morning, I called her. She told me she didn't want to use drugs anymore and was thinking about going home. I was worried she wouldn't be there when I got back, but didn't say anything to stop her. I went back to work with a sick feeling in my stomach.


Dreams like this really bother me.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Shades on the Shopping List

I had this dream the other night where...

A cute girl named Krystal was signing me up for a cash prize drawing. One condition of the drawing was that you had to tell what the first thing you were going to buy with the prize money was before entering the drawing.

I had just flown into Los Angeles and forgotten my shades, so I told her the first thing I'd buy was a pair of sunglasses. She smiled at that and finished up the form, qualifying me for the drawing. I can't remember who asked who, but since it was my dream, I'm going to guess she was the one who asked if I'd like to go out later. I said "yeah," and was feeling pretty good about things from that point on.

Krystal walked with me into a meeting, already in progress, where two of my friends were asking a man and woman for lots of money to produce a movie. The potential financiers were both dressed in navy blue, the woman in her power suit and the man in a business suit, his chiseled face set with skepticism behind designer frames. I breezed into the room, leaning in to take something from the candy dish in the middle of the table. Then, I dropped into a chair at the far end of the table, listening to the meeting wrap up.

My friends talked about how much they believed in their project and how they would find a way to get the movie made no matter what. I stared at the ceiling, trying to think about something else while the woman assured my friends that theirs was a worthy project and the film's message was very moving and powerful. Then the guy in the suit shook his head, talking about logistics and movies being a high-risk investment. Then he made some comment, apparently including me and Krystal, something about how we didn't know enough people to get the film made properly. "There are only four of you."

I swiveled around in my chair and laughed in his face. He was so serious. "Buddy, if there are only four like us, then the world's in trouble." I stood up and nodded to the lady in the power suit. She was kind of pretty for a woman old enough to be my mother.

Me and my pals walked out of the meeting. Krystal gave me a big smile as our shoulders brushed against each other.

...and I'm still not entirely sure what the dream was about. I'm just glad I was cavalier, ate some candy, and got the girl.