Friday, January 31, 2003

Today, at least, I am not a monster. Each day I fight the battle anew, but for today, for one more day, I triumphed.
Narrow Escape!
I was on my way out the door this evening when the phone rang. I had to get to Yost; so, I continued onward. Then the Flying Dutchman frantically waved me back. I rolled my eyes, but went back into the house. I found Neutral Man with the phone in my room. It was Bachelorette No.3! Fortunately, the truth worked better than any lie. "Hello," I said. "Hey, what's going on?" she replied. "I'm sorry, I can't talk now, I've got to go to work." Whew, a clever and completely honest escape. No thanks to Tweedle Dum and Tweedle Dee; by Jove, those two are useless. What good are friends if they won't even screen your calls?

Thursday, January 30, 2003

"I have an important message for all the cute people all over the world... there's a lot more of us ugly motherfuckers than you are. So watch out." --Frank Zappa*

A Good E. Bag Thursday Miracle!
For Blue Tree Whacking Day this year, we gave special dispensation to have Good E. Bag Wednesday on a day other than Wednesday; thus, we celebrated the world's first Good E. Bag Thursday. Guy Zach Nie! gave me a copy of Daniel Quinn's After Dachau. I was asked to read a passage from a random page. As it suited my fancy, I read the passage in the "NFL Films" voice I used on "Cleveland Municipal Stadium" from RCY's Good or Suck! I randomly opened the book to page 82, eighty-two being my favorite number. Then, when I started to read aloud, came the real miracle.
"Oh. I see. Yes." She sat there for a moment looking dazed. Then: "I remember once we had chicken necks."
"Chicken necks?"
"We were poor."
"This was when you were growing up?"
"Where was this?"
"In Cleveland."

Holy Toledo, Batman! Spooky. And that, as immediately declared by no lesser authority that Zach Nie! himself, was a true Good E. Bag Thursday Miracle!

2003 Genesee County All-Stars
With the regular season now over, our roster is set. Here then are your 2003 Genesee County All-Stars, those young heroes who will give the last full measure of devotion to once again claim the precious Intramural Champions T-shirts.
Jon Barkey - co-captain; Powers
Mike Wilson - co-captain; Grand Blanc
Ben Purman - Powers
Eric "Sal" Salenski - Grand Blanc
Kevin Martel - Powers
Tony Palmer - Powers
Adam "Lube" Lubert - Grand Blanc
Dave Anderson - Grand Blanc
Brian "G" Godlesky - Powers
David "the Bald Mountain" Wilson - Grand Blanc
Andy "Keanu" Quijano - Powers
Tad Lippencott - Powers

Of course, I would be remiss in not mentioning our departed hole man and the emotional core of the team, Jason Emeott (Grand Blanc), finally lost to the allure of the real world. With Barkey, Purman, and I, Jay founded the All-Stars, and it was his tireless enthusiasm that turned mere boys into champions. You may not be able to play anymore, Jay, but the T-shirts will belong to you as much as to us.

*I quoted Mr. Zappa last night to Lindsay. Her immediate reaction was, "You aren't ugly." Sigh, thank you, I know, but neither am I one of the cute people and... gah, nevermind. I'm going to go read "The Masque of the Red Death" and then watch The Simpsons.
We had a rash of injuries at work tonight. Three accident reports in five hours of basketball is more stimulation than I require, thank you very much. This one guy cracked his head on his friend's metal knee brace and his melon just wouldn't stop bleeding. I mean, after fifteen minutes of direct pressure it did stop bleeding, but not before leaving a sizable puddle on the gym floor. I don't like it when people bleed, but there's something I really like about the sight of blood; it is the most amazingly rich red. I know, I'm a freak. (Oddly, I like blood, but I've always been bored by the concept of vampires.)

I was all set to write a really long entry in my journal tonight, but then I got sidetracked by talking to Linz for a couple hours. She was weird tonight, but I can't put my finger on how. It's probably unfair to her how often I talk about her here. She thinks I should try to date Lifeguard Girl. Dude, LG Girl is nineteen. Even if she'd have me I couldn't date a teenager. It would be weird and wrong and just not something I could be a part of. So, she told me to wait until she turns twenty. Lindsay's parents came out to visit her last week; they had dinner with her boyfriend's mom. He's important enough to her to meet the parents; she is so going to marry Jake.

I threw Elizabeth the lifeguard into the pool today for no other reason than I thought it would be fun to do so. And it was. I told her I was going to throw her in (there was nothing she could do about it, she's 5'3" and maybe 110 lbs.) and that she should strip down to her suit; so, while I feel a little guilty about throwing her in, I don't feel guilty about getting her guard shirt and warm-ups wet. Hee hee. (I'm not a total bastard. By way of apology, I let her go home an hour early and I guarded water polo in her place. Stupid conscience.)

Today was a good day in comics, especially The Flash and Gotham Central.

Tuesday, January 28, 2003

House of Delicious Candies 19, Red House 6
Yes, yes, now even the co-rec team has become an innertube water polo juggernaut. I only mention this game, whereas I have not mentioned the previous two, because our opponent, Red House, is a team made up of many of my co-workers. It was a delight to outmaneuver them, outstrategize them, and overpower them. Actually, the key to our victory was the same as with the All-Stars: communication. Plus, I brought Katie, Whitney, and Lifeguard Girl, doubling the number of girls and allowing them to sub (an entire game of innertube water polo is an exhausting affair). We also moved Kristina Martel, her brother Kevin is an All-Star, to forward and racked up those girl points. (In co-rec, every goal scored by a boy is one point, each goal by a girl is two.) At one point, I was able to carry the ball deep into their zone. Tez, an official with whom I've often worked, said, "Wilson's got no shot!" So, I waited, saw an opening, and thread the needle between the upraised arms of two defensemen and past the goalie. I scored a goal! I never score, I'm a fucking defenseman. It was cool! Paddling hard to get back to assist on D, I joyfully cried, "Ha! Your asses got scored on by a defenseman!" In sports, I believe, it is right and proper to let one's passions occasionally take control.
Okay, overdue email responses: three down (Dylweed, The Watergirl, the Evil Princess), two to go (I'm Doomed!, Olga).

Lindsay called last night, but I didn't have the heart to call her back. This would be so much fucking easier if she didn't care for me.

Monday, January 27, 2003

Genesee County All-Stars 1, Pi Kappa Alpha 0 (forfeit)
Son of a bitch! I wanted to play! Still, we had ten guys there, plus two Pikes; so, we had a five-on-five scrimmage, plus goalies. Regarding the scrimmage, let me say this: I would hate to have to play us. We are tough fuckers. True, we played rougher/cheated more than we would in a normal game, but either way we're stiff competitors. Tad is strong as hell at forward, and the Mountain occupies a ton of space on defense. Some of the teams I saw on Thursday, the other night teams from our divison play, appear to be formidable, but until tonight I had forgotten just how fearsome we can be. Our eventual victory is far from assured, but I say again that I would hate to have to play us. Tonight's All-Stars: Barkey, Sal, Martel, Lube, the Bald Mountain, Dave, Palmer, G, Tad, and I; missing: Purman and Keanu. Damn, it we all show up, we have almost enough for two whole squads. Next year, we only lose Sal, Martel, and me. Crap, we're losing a lot of offense with Kevin and possibly our best two-way middie in Sal; we'll just have to hope the kids can step up and maybe bring in some more new blood. I want the Genesee County All-Stars to be a dynasty that outlives my Methuselahesque tenure at Michigan. Still, the present demands my attention and soon we enter the playoffs with our first perfect record.

I've been really bad about returning emails lately; so, if you should have heard from me and haven't, please don't take it personally. I'm a broad-based, equal opportunity jerk.
Lifeguard Girl called me not long after I'd blogged on Friday. Instead of going out to dinner, we went swimming. Yeah, I know. Weird. It was great, though. I love innertube water polo, but there's nothing else in this world like pounding out a few thousand yards (okay, only 1600, but I hadn't been swimming in something on the order of two months, so leave me alone) to make you feel alive. Afterward, feeling in the mood for greasy food, we zipped over to Denny's; we had the cool, punk rock waitress, but she was wearing long sleaves so we couldn't see her cool star tattoo. We sat there for three hours, mostly talking about her inability to decide between her best friend/back-up and her fuckbuddy. She loves her best friend, and he wants her, but she's just not attracted to him enough to give up her fuckbuddy, which she'd be obligated to do if they started actually dating. She doesn't want any kind of greater relationship with her fuckbuddy; at present, it is nonexistent except for every once in a while, when he lives up to his title. I don't think I've ever been an actual back-up, but I am a back-up kind of guy. The same holds true for most of my friends; we're nice guys, so we finish last. My advice was requested, and I discerned three options: a) give dating the best friend a genuine go, b) tell him she would never be his girlfriend, c) inertia: remain at rest until acted upon by an outside force. I asked her what she would say if her best friend said, "I want you to be my girlfriend." "I'd say yes." With that, we both agreed that as she does not want to take any precipitous action, she would give in to inertia and wait for him to do something. I really like hanging out with Lifeguard Girl; she's only a sophomore, so there's no possibility of anything ever being between us, so it's just really comfortable. Plus, she's a lunatic, which is always fun. Conclusion: Jodi rocks.

I held Bachelorette No. 1's hand for a while on Saturday. She was sick; so, I didn't even make an effort to kiss her. Why would I want to kiss her? Because she seems to want me to. But I don't want to be that guy, I don't want to be the guy who goes out with a girl just because he needs to go out with someone. Gah. Note to self: assuming there is anything there, take no provocative action; let it fizzle out of its own accord. But she let me hold her hand. It was cold, nothing more. She moved several times just to remain next to me. That doesn't mean she wants you to kiss her. Oh yeah? Then what does it mean? Burden of proof lies on the affirmative. Remember debate? We were always negative. I don't think I'm chasing phantoms here. Sure you are, chumley, you're always chasing phantoms. Killjoy. Dreamer. Stop messing up my action. What action? You held her fucking hand! Remember what happened when I tried to hold Lindsay's hand? Fair enough. I conceed the point, but it's hardly an all-clear signal. Besides, you don't particularly like this girl except that she seems to be attracted to you. You've got me there.

The third and final regular season All-Stars game is in a couple hours. For tomorrow's co-rec game, Lifeguard Girl, Katie (Steeze's erstwhile girl), and Whitney (Katie's constant companion) are all going to play, doubling the number of girls available for the playoffs. At the RCY show over Christmas, I wore a specially made T-shirt which read, NOT A FROG. I meant this in relation to the night's headlining act, Tommy's Frogs, and my status as the only member of Real Can of Yams to not also be a member of Tommy's Frogs. Whitney had other ideas, though, as I discovered when I saw her at Macho Grande on New Year's Eve. She said, "You know your shirt from the other night? When I first saw that I thought it meant you weren't a frog, like in a fairy tale. Like, you didn't need to be kissed to turn into a prince since you already weren't a frog. I thought you were a prince." That's one of the oddest and best compliments I have ever been paid.

Friday, January 24, 2003

I'm supposed to have dinner tonight with Lifeguard Girl, but as usual she hasn't called me back. I'm hesitant to eat in case she does, but on the other hand I'm really jonesing for some dinner. I know, I know, my life is one long series of agonizing decisions. (You'd pay money to be me.)

Thursday, January 23, 2003

Hmm, I forgot what I was going to write here because I got interrupted. I remember posting this blank space because whatever I was going to say I wanted to be said Thursday night, not early Friday morning, but for the life of me I cannot remember what it was. If it was going to be good, I apologize to both of us.

The Bald Mountain once said, "Being The Last Angry Man means never having to say you're sorry." I'd give my right eye for that to be true (though Odin got a better deal since he traded his eye to become all-knowing). In reality, being The Last Angry Man means you owe someone an apology almost every single day of your life. I'm sorry.
Hurray! More depressing news! I received a note and some pictures from my mom today. Included in the envelope was a newspaper clipping bearing the headline, "Program offers people a second chance to teach." At the bottom of the note, Mom had written, "I cut this article out of the Flint Journal, in case you might have any interest in this program." Mother of God, how did my mom live in the same house as me for eighteen years and have so little idea of who I am? More on this later, I'm sure.

Today, it is officially as cold as a witch's tit. Come to think of it, it has been for over a week now. I'm quite pleased, because I finally get a chance to regularly wear the fur hat I inherited from Grandpa Wilson. It's from Finland! This morning I woke up not because my alarm clock(s) went off, but because I was shivering. Having already used all of my blankets, which I know realize are not numerous enough, I got my sleeping bag out of the closet and climbed in beneath my covers. It worked like a charm. Mike Wilson 1, Nature 0.

Actual good news! I have a wench! That doesn't mean I have a girlfriend or even any kind of relationship with the young lass in question, but I get to call her a wench and not get in trouble! (Mind you, it does go over better when paired with "comely." As in, "Aye, she's a comely wench, her radiance like that o' the sun!") It's like some kind of wonderful dream. That settles it, the pirate life is the only life for me.
Best. News. Ever. The site is back.

I want to ask Lindsay if her boyfriend knows how I feel about her and, if so, how he feels about that. A small voice in the back of my head says that this isn't such a good idea, understandably giving me pause. Opinions? The dark bastard, true to form, is doing his little happy dance as he explains to me that Lindsay's boyfriend couldn't care less how I feel about her since he gets to bury his face between her legs and because she loves him as she'll never love me. (I swear, if I could have that little shit - the dark bastard, not Lindsay's beau - for five minutes in a locked room....)

I've got these three long scratches on my stomach. I'm sure I got them from the Flounders, but I don't remember anyone clawing at my bulbous belly. It's kind of cool, though. A fanboyish notion, yes, but it sort of looks like I was attacked by Wolverine.

Neutral Girl vs. Grizzly Adams
Okay, so right after New Year's, Neutral Girl went out on a date with Grizzly Adams; it was an experience she does not wish to repeat. This past long weekend, Neutral Girl was in town visiting Neutral Man. Both Friday and Saturday nights, the groups with which Neutral Man and Neutral Girl were hanging out included Grizzly Adams. At Saturday night's midnight screening of Monty Python and the Holy Grail, for which they ditched me by backing out of the party at Macho Grande, Neutral Man let his guard down. As planned, he would have sat on one side of Neutral Girl while the Flying Dutchman protected her other flank. However, he slipped up and Grizzly Adams sat down right next to her. In the middle of the movie, Neutral Girl felt Grizzly Adams's hand on her thigh. She batted the hand away and did her best to scootch over towards the Flying Dutchman; of course, as most people would, she didn't confront Grizzly and hoped it would just blow over.

Sunday night, the three of them (NM, NG, and TFD) and I went to the movies (I will not say what we saw, it's too embarrassing). Grizzly Adams met us at the theater; had I known he was going to be in attendence, wild horses could not have dragged me there. Nevertheless, we succesfully shielded Neutral Girl so that I was on her right and both the Flying Dutchman and Neutral Man on her left before Grizzly Adams. Crisis averted? Sadly, no. It had snowed during the movie. I tried to steer Neutral Girl into Neutral Man's 'scort wagon, but she allowed herself to be trapped into talking to Grizzly. My two chums and I cleared off the car as quickly as we could and again tried to get her into the car. Finally, she broke away from him and got into the front seat (we're gentlemen, you see, so the Flying Dutchman and I piled into the back). Apparently, without asking her, Grizzly had made dinner reservations for the two of them for that evening and he was disappointed she'd "cancelled." He asked her to have breakfast with him the next day, but she dodged by lying about how early she was leaving to return to Valpraiso (where she goes to school, genius). He also invited himself to visit her the next weekend, but she told him, truthfully, that she had family coming in that weekend. She shook her head, wondering why we hadn't rescued her just then outside the car while we wondered aloud why she hadn't run away screaming at the top of her lungs, but mostly we all just had a nice laugh about what a creep Grizzly Adams is. Too soon, as it turned out.

Then he came back! I literally jumped when he knocked on the Flying Dutchman's window (rear passenger). The Flying Dutchman rolled down his window and Grizzly said, "[Neutral Girl], I know it's late, but would you come have a drink with me? I promise to deposit you at [Neutral Man]'s later." Aaaaaaaaaah! It was all I could do to remain silent! I wanted to scream and laugh at the same time. She politely declined and, to our collective relief, he turned and walked away without further creepiness. We all started yelling, "Drive! Drive! Drive!" and it wasn't until we were safely underway that we all started laughing and shaking. Holy shit, who creepy was that? Okay, she hadn't liked it when he'd put his hand on her leg, she hadn't accepted his dinner "invitation," and she had declined his offer of breakfast the next day before she left town. What made him think she'd accept a nightcap? And he knocked on the Dutchman's window, not Neutral Girl's! Aaaaaaah! Oh man, oh man, oh man, what inthe hell had just happened? We were all mortified and amused and stunned all the way home and into the next day. By Lucifer's beard, what was going through that crazy head of his? I mean, I've always joked about Grizzly being a psycho, but geez!

Back at venerable old 1213, we all did the best we could to make light of everything and make Neutral Girl feel safe and secure. Because we're men; we're trying to be men. It's what we do. Man alive, I half expect that Neutral Girl will come back to her apartment one day and find a love sled waiting for her in the mail.

Next: A Blue Tree Whacking Day/Good E. Bag Thursday Miracle!

Wednesday, January 22, 2003

Holy Toledo, kids, The Hippos are coming out with a new album! Yes, there are officially broken up, but before they go they're releasing a third record! This is such incredibly great news! Finally, a companion to Forget the World and Heads Are Gonna Roll! In the lamentably shrinking world of ska-punk, the breakup of The Hippos is one of the most tragic signs of our time. At least this way we'll have one more memorial before they go the way of, well, The Hippos.

Tuesday, January 21, 2003

I finally got all the pictures I took over Christmas developed. Seven rolls sounds like a lot, but it sure doesn't seem that way to me. So many other moments I wish I'd captured on film. My favorites are an extreme close-up off the Professor, taken from about eight inches away from his face; Guy Zach Nie! and K. Steeze hamming it up; Linz and I at the Blinkies' wedding (a rare photo in which I'm not making a silly face, or rather, a face that at the time I thought was silly but looks retarded once the pictures are in front of me); and Skeeter, The Watergirl, Saturday Night, and Lindsay at the rock show. So many beauties in one photograph.... I'm no Luddite, but I am technologically limited. So, don't hold your breath for any of those pictures to be scanned and then added to The Secret Base. While I do know how to scan pictures, I don't know how to post them on ye olde blog. And that pretty much takes care of that.

Co-rec water polo in forty-five minutes. It isn't the same as the All-Stars, but any time in an innertube is good time. Plus, girls in swimsuits is (almost) never a bad thing.
"Propelled through all this madness, by your beauty and my sadness
I'll never change or rearrange, till I've finished what I've started
I'm ugly and you know it, but you think that I'm a poet
So I'll keep the rhyme if I feel in time, it gets me where I'm going"
-----Flogging Molly, "Selfish Man" from Swagger

Swagger is the essense of the pirate life. To be a pirate, one must do terrible things, you must steal and kill, without becoming a total bastard. Why? Because if you're a bastard it is only a matter of time before one of yer mates slits yer throat and tosses ye overboard. To do these things, you must have supreme confidence in yourself. You must take what you want not because you're too lazy to work for it, but because you boldly claim it as your own. You must become a lion. You must possess that certain swagger. Also, you must have read Robert Louis Stevenson's Treasure Island as an impressionable lad, decided that Long John Silver was a cur and a wretch, and resolved that you will grow up to be a better breed of pirate, not a common thief, but an idealistic hero of young boys' fantasies, a man larger than life. The modern pirate takes as his hero Theodore Roosevelt, because he is still idealistic enough to be impressionable and he is eagerly watching TR: An American Lion.

Monday, January 20, 2003

Genesee County All-Stars 20, Evans Scholars 1
Wow. I mean, wow. The poor bastards we were playing against never had a chance. Again, they were not a bad team; they won both opening sprints. (Each half opens with both teams lined up alongside their respective goals. The ball is thrown into the exact middle of the pool and the teams race out to get it. We're fast, but they beat us squarely both times.) Early on, we just passed around on offense and took quality shots; before they got a single decent chance, the score was 5-0. Then, we clamped down on defense. Their forwards had to come back farther and farther to get the ball and every time they wheeled to face the goal and look for passes, they found either Lube or myself right there. You just aren't going to win if your forwards are stuck ten yards out from the goal. With about five minutes left in the second (the game consists of two fifteen-minute halves), one of their forwards - the one responsible for their solitary goal - turned around and extended his hand. "Hey, good job, you guys play some great defense." The credit should go to Lube, Palmer, and Purman before me. (Purman played goal in the first. Up 10-1 at the half I let him have some field time and put Lube in goal, where he was flawless in the second.) No G tonight, though I don't know why. The Bald Mountain had a meeting that ran late; he didn't get to play last year and it is so critical to his development to get him in the water before the playoffs. Reports indicate the Trevor King has some kind of massive shoulder injury; however, Martel landed a wicked backwards shot tonight, filling Trevor's specialty. Secret Sunday practices have yielded a few "trick plays" that we're going to try out next week, competition permitting. My favorites: the "Circle Jerk" and "Blue 32."

This season is a dream. Honestly, we're just that good compared to our opponents thus far. A little surprisingly, all the guys defer to me. I ask them where they'd like to play and the response is always, "Wherever you need me." Guys who I know want to play forward I need back at mid, potentials middies back on defense, but everybody does his job without complaint. It's really, really gratifying. I swear, we need to take innertube water polo national.
The Weekend
The party at Macho Grande was fucking sweet! Neutral Man, Neutral Girl, and the Flying Dutchman fucking ditched me to go see a midnight show of Monty Python and the Holy Grail at the State, but the party kicked ass anyway. Also, schadenfreude, Grizzly Adams ruined their moviegoing experience, which makes me happy to no end; I understand the allure of The Holy Grail, but both the Flying Dutchman and I have it on DVD and Neutral Man loves parties at Macho Grande. Their loss.

The party (cont'd). The Bald Mountain breathed fire three separate times, fortunately not burning his face off in the process. He used a torch, whereas previously I had only seen him use a lighter, and that made everything a lot more dangerous as the flame liked to follow the alcohol stream back toward his face. Still, he walked away unharmed, and on some level I am grateful to the Professor for teaching him, since it brings him such great joy.

Bachelorette No. 3. Ugh. Listen, I don't mean to sound like a total fuck here, but all I get out of our friendship is listening to her bitch about her friends. We'll start talking about something else, books, for instance, but then randomly she'll segue back to her depressing life. It would be one thing if I could lean over and just start making out with her, but as things stand, I'm getting absolutely nothing out of this.

Neutral Girl, it turns out, is actually quite cool. As I quoted to Neutral Man shortly before her departure this afternoon, "It's hard not to like her." It seems as if Grizzly Adams is now stalking her, which sucks, but we did get one really funny story out of it, though I shan't relate it now. Neutral Girl, the Flying Dutchman, Neutral Man, and I had brunch at Large Man today; we all got the breakfast bar. I love Large Man! (Both Danny Clark and the Evil Princess independently named the Big Boy in Grand Blanc "Large Man"; so, now I call all Big Boys Large Men. It's funny to me.)

There's a Genesee County All-Stars game tonight. Purman will be in goal and Lube will be there, which should free up G for defense and Palmer as both a middie and a forward (he's got that ever so tricky left-handed shot). We probably won't equal last week's 18-1 trouncing, but I'm confident in our victory. I, at least, will be a bastard on D.

Saturday, January 18, 2003

So, Neutral Man's friend, whom we shall call Neutral Girl, is here for the weekend. I'm trying to be nice to her, but she speaks so softly I can barely hear a word she's saying. Anyway, I have named her Neutral Girl for two reasons: a) she's been Neutral Man's friend for years, so I have to assume she is similarly inclined in not expressing her opinions and b) Neutral Man loves comic books. (Plus, in the aftermath of his breakup with Miss Missy and Neutral Girl's breakup with her Miss Missy-esque boyfriend, Neutral Man has been talking to her rather frequently. Over break he made his move, but apparently she isn't yet ready for another relationship.) Good luck, Neutral Man!

After yesterday's troubles, I'm happy to report that the crazy bread was everything the Flying Dutchman had hoped it would be, making the near beating well worth our while.

Party tonight at Macho Grande (the Mountain's apartment), though a part of me also wants to go out to the bar. If I can do that first, great, but the most important thing is to get to Macho Grande in time for the Bald Mountain to breath fire. Of course, I'd be nice to make sure I get out of the house before Bachelorette No. 3 calls; she caught me off guard yesterday and though my memory is a little fuzzy (because I zoned out and was unconsciously saying, "Uh huh," "Yeah," "Well, why hang out with them if they just piss you off?" [now, that's irony]), I think she might have said she might call tonight. Yeah, that's two mights, but that's not enough security for me. Yeah, I know I should stop whining about this since it's my fault for trying to be nice to her in the first place, but that's not going to happen; so, if you don't like it, go read something else. Like, this.

Friday, January 17, 2003

The Flying Dutchman and I went in to Little Caesar's to sate his need for crazy bread and we almost got our asses kicked! The guy behind the counter just struck me as funny so I had a little smile on my face, and the clerk looked up at me and said, menacingly, "Something funny, guys?" This guy was a hardcore bottomfeeder. I looked at the Dutchman and figuring I couldn't come up with a good lie quickly enough, I said, "You have no idea how exciting this is for him. He hasn't had crazy bread in like what? Four years?" He nodded, "Yeah, I haven't had crazy bread since high school." The guy's expression broke, he smiled and laughed a little, "Well, I hope you enjoy it." We thanked the guy and broke into hysterical laughter as soon as we were in the safety of the Flying Dutchman's Jimmy.

Winston Churchill once said, "There is nothing quite so exciting as being shot at and missed." This is true. The Flying Dutchman and I, today we enjoyed the suburban equivalent.

Thursday, January 16, 2003

It's been a bad week. It hasn't actually been a bad week, but I'm going slightly nuts. One minute I'm really happy and the next I write posts like that from earlier today and the later post from yesterday. I hate going back and forth like this. Why the fuck can't I decide if I'm glad Lindsay is back (in Berkeley) or if I don't want to talk to her? Well, actually that one I kind of understand. Just about exactly half of the times we speak, she asks me "What's wrong?," usually when I'm right as rain. It's infuriating, because when I tell her nothing's wrong she doesn't believe me and when she finally drops it she sez, "Well, okay" in the most beautiful voice I've ever heard and I know all she wants to do is help, but there's nothing fucking wrong! Yeah, so I'm afraid that if I call her she'll ask me what's wrong and I'll flip out and hang up. I don't want to do that because it would hurt her and only bad things would result. At the same time, I love talking to her and I really want to call her.
Regarding the "rules of attraction," a recent trend among my fellow bloggers, two truths can be discerned: a) I'm never going to get laid. b) More importantly, I'm never going to marry for love. Maybe one day out of fear, but never for love. I'm going to go put my head in front of a shotgun.

Good Ole Government
Senator Lieberman (Connecticut), Senator Kerry (Massachusetts), Representative Gephart (Missouri), Senator Edwards (North Carolina), or Governor Dean (New Hampshire, I think) versus the Shrub, President Bush. Do the Democrats stand for anything or will they wilt in the face of the Donald Rumsfeld War Machine? Domestic politics mostly make me want to wretch, but I genuinely dig the big race; 2004 should be more interesting than 2000 since there should be a real fight for the Democratic nomination. (Let's face it, neither Bradley nor McCain ever had a real chance of getting their respective nominations.) I should probably shut up, since I don't have anything even remotely original to say about the race ahead.

Learn More About: General Joseph "Vinegar Joe" Stilwell. He was a stubborn son of a bitch and a personal hero of mine.

Wednesday, January 15, 2003

Will wonders never cease, Lindsay actually got in touch with me before I called or wrote her. Mexico was "muy bien." What do we think, Lindsay Helen Taylor or Lindsay Shaw Taylor? Either way, I predict an engagement by the Fall at the latest. Am I indulging in self-pity or do I possess the power of prophecy? In late August, I wrote in my journal that if Lindsay had a boyfriend, she wouldn't tell me until it had been going on for some time. In late August, she was already dating her boyfriend, but didn't tell me until November. I fucking hate being Cassandra.

In the background, Dave King sings, "It's been the worst day since yesterday." Thank God for Flogging Molly.
My sincerest thanks to the Evil Princess for the delightful ecard. You, my dear, are a very naughty girl.

Tuesday, January 14, 2003

Before heading over to sup basketball, I stopped by the pool to play on Barkey's co-rec team. (Hey, tube time is tube time.) After the game, the fellow sup I've named Bachelorette No. 2 asked if I'd seen Nemesis over break. It's the weirdest thing in the world to be having a conversation about Star Trek with a cute blonde.

At basketball, I was shooting the shit with the (building sups, they are my opposite numbers for the drop-in program) and one of them brought up last night's score. Earlier, the other basketball sup had asked me about it. The game was yesterday. How did word spread so quickly? So, anyway, I told the tale of the All-Stars' domination with as much pomp and gusto as I could summon. Neat, I'm a legend in my own mind... I mean time, a legend in my own time! Aw, crap.

Neutral Man and I were talking about all the wasted potential of Star Trek: Voyager. I love having multiple independent conversations about Star Trek in one day. I have to say, though, that I'm quite disappointed in the lad for not making any effort to watch Enterprise. I, Trekkie.
Genesee County All-Stars 18, Space Monkeys 1
Last night, we took our opponents apart with almost military precision. They were, in my estimation, a pretty good team, possessing a ton of potential, but we were executing in late-season form. It was incredible. We played in our standard formation - two forwards, two middies, two defensemen - with one middie more offense-minded while the other kept an eye back on D. We adjusted to their strategies, communicated constantly, and blew them out of the water. I've never seen anything like it in four years of playing innertube water polo. I know it will get harder, and we must guard against cockiness (which breeds mistakes), but damn. Before I was just blowing hot air, but those poor bastards never had a chance. And we did this without Purman, our goalie; Lubes, our back-up goalie and best defenseman; and Trevor King, master of the backwards shot. In attendence: Barkey (co-captain), Sal, Palmer, Dave, G (filling in magnificently in net), Martel, the Bald Mountain (newbie), Lippencott (newbie), Andy (newbie), and I (co-captain). It was amazing. Let's go All-Stars!
Beware the Hawai'yeti.

Monday, January 13, 2003

Fuck. This test post survives, but the real post was lost. Fucking Blogger. The bastards at Pyra Labs can take their place alongside the dead men at Amazon.

Sunday, January 12, 2003

Woo hoo! Now I can watch Futurama five days a week! After years of getting dicked over by Fox, finally Cartoon Network is showing Matt Groening's black sheep the respect it deserves; darn tootin' I'm excited. How could I not love Futurama? It's an amalgamation of two of my most favoritest things: The Simpsons and science fiction. Hurray!

In other news, last night Neutral Man and I went out to the Arbor Brewing Company. He'd wanted to go to Leopold Bros., but gave up once he realized it wasn't as empty as the last time he'd been there (during the summer). Gee, Brad, a crowded bar on a Saturday night? We had a fine time, but we both faux lamented the lack of girls to pursue; of course, neither of us is the kind of guy who talks to random girls in bars anyway. If, somehow, we'd wanted that we would have gone to a bar closer to campus. It was smooth, thick, and tasty, but still the best thing about my beer was the name. From the "Strong Beer Selections" menu, I had a Steamroller Russian Imperial Stout. Hot damn.

I wanted to celebrate Guy Fawkes Day, but then I discovered it's a rather militantly anti-Catholic holiday and I just can't be party to that. Curses! I really wanted to celebrate it, though; it's the only holiday of which I'm aware to feature burning a man in effigy as the central observance.

This should be a song: "Zap Brannigan Meets Brick Malloy!" (A name shamelessly stolen from my literary idol, Alfred "Winner of the very first Hugo Award" Bester.)
We snuck into the IMSB Pool and had illegal All-Stars practice this afternoon. Man, you forget how tiring innertube water polo can be. Well, that and I'm fucking incredibly old. 23 and my life is over. Not that it's actually over, but from here on out it's all joint pain and muscle aches and "Ow, my groin!" Naw, it's not that bad... yet. Still, it's pretty grim. And it's going to get a whole lot worse before it gets better. Why? Because it's not going to get better at all, just worse and worse and worse. I had a really pleasant day today, and now I think I may go to bed early. Night night.
Seriously, fuck My brother sent me a "Share the Love" discount, but those fucknuts wouldn't let me redeem it. Fuck them. I hope each and every employee of Amazon dies of the slowest, most painful form of cancer known to man. I hope they beg for the sweet release of death only to have their suffering prolonged again and again by advances in medical science. I hope they die alone and unloved, beyond hope, beyond prayer. All this misery because they wouldn't let me save ten bucks? No. All this misery because they made a promise they didn't keep. All this misery because they broke their word. Die, you bastards.

Saturday, January 11, 2003

It's five in the morning and I'm still up. Just desserts for sleeping too late at the start if this day. I'm contemplating staying up, but I think I should go to bed lest my resolve give out at 8am and I waste all of tomorrow in bed. Nothing's wrong, I'm just up because I haven't been awake for eighteen hours and my body thinks it's midnight. And now, a song.

This is The Astronaut Song.
A funny little song I hope you sing along.
This is The Astronaut Song.
Me and the monkey pass the time with Pong.

All I know is that I love you when I'm floating in space,
A funny little song so the monkey punched me in the face.
A funny little song so the monkey punched me in the face.
All I know is that I love you when I'm floating in space,
A funny little song so the monkey punched me in the face.

This is The Astronaut Song.
Man, I wish I'd brought my friends along.
This is The Astronaut Song.
I love the monkey when he plays his gong.


This is The Astronaut Song.
This is the end, now it won't be long.
This is The Astronaut Song.
I think back to places that I've gone.


This is The Astronaut Song.
In a black hole, now I am gone.
This is The Astronaut Song.
I saved the monkey but not his gong.

All I know is that I love you when I'm floating in space,
A funny little song so the monkey punched me in the---
All I know is that I love you when I'm floating in space,
A funny little song so the monkey punched me in the face.
A funny little song so the monkey punched me in the face.
All I know is that I love you so the monkey punched me in the face,
A funny little song when I am floating in space.
A funny little song when I am floating in space.
All I know is that I love you when I'm floating in space...

"The Astronaut Song" Words by M. Wilson. David hates it, so this will never be an RCY song. That's okay, it wouldn't be crowd friendly like "Riot Grrl" or "The Cowboy, the Indian, and the Cyborg;" it's a funny little song about an astronaut dying all alone in deep space, not a topic usually covered in funny little songs. RCY should perform one old MTD song at every show; next up, "The Viking Song"! No way, even better, we should put "The Viking Song" on CODENAME: Koala! That and "Shiver Me Timbers"! Arrrrh!

Real Can of Yams
Good or Suck! (2002)
CODENAME: Koala (2003?)
Nothing Can Kill the Grimace (?)
Real Can of Yams IV: Deadly Alliance (?) tentative title
Nothing Can Kill the Gramace (?) tentative title
I made the font smaller. Why? For the same reason professors used to tell me to reprint papers in a larger font and why I never used up even half of a bluebook: I like very small writing/typing. Not like Seven, but pretty small.
Why am I blogging on a Friday night? The answer is twofold: a) I am a loser and b) I just got off work (I was subbing for the other sup named Mike W.; once again, no good deed...). Neutral Man, the Flying Dutchman, and I had talked about going out after I got back, but now their terrifying friend Grizzly Adams is here. I hate that guy. Shit, I actually wanted to go out.

At work, I realized I've got a little crush on this evening's lifeguard, Elizabeth. (Trivia: her full name is Elizabeth Anne Wilson. My sister's is Lisa Anne Wilson. Lisa is a derivation of Elizabeth. The end result, I have a crush on my sister?) I've known Elizabeth for a couple years now. Here's the thing, I can't have a crush on Elizabeth, I find her mildly annoying. She does not know how to stop speaking, and I've never encountered anyone with a higher opinion of herself. Yet here we are. As I've said before, and will assuredly say again, life is a strange enterprise. (Trivia: Lisa's initials are LAW. She is, of course, a lawyer in Washington, DC.)

Friday, January 10, 2003

Suping the first night of innertube water polo (ITWP to those in the know), I met a kid named Scott, one of the officials. I said to Scott, "You know the show Sports Night?" He nodded. "Has anyone ever told you you look a lot like the character Dan Rydell?" He said, "Yeah, somebody told me that just like the other day." Hand on my heart, he bears the most uncanny resemblence to Josh Charles. I like the kid, I just keep expecting him to start asking people what song in the public domain they would like him to sing to them on their birthday.

Tina asked, "Are you okay?"
Dan smiled and said, "Not even close."
I've discovered to my horror that I really enjoy waking up early. Also, three people said I'm not creepy. Wow, three people actually read this crap. Who knew? The answer: I did. Well, I knew two of them did, and now I've tricked a third into revealing herself. Bwa ha ha ha ha! Let's see, then there are two others, both of whom came forward reluctantly. (I'll tell you, all the anonymity and hiding behind screen names that takes place on the Internet really bugs me. Security is one thing, and no one is more opposed to sexual predators and virtual stalkers than I am, but if you are going to put your opinions out into the world, you should at least have the fortitude to back them up with your name. Only a coward refuses to back up his own words.) So, those five plus, oh, at least seven others that I know of... wow, a dozen readers. Super rad! Me, I've got my four daily reads, plus the BTW Forums ("Which no one is using!" I said accusingly.), and several others that I check sporatically, approximately weekly.

Curses, I'd hoped to get this posted while it was still technically Thursday.

If you get a chance, check out The Starting Line. They aren't great or anything, but for sixteen the front man (boy) is fucking amazing. (What? Nick Neu? The man they call the Boy? Guy Zach Nie! and Boy Nick Neu?)

Thursday, January 9, 2003

Here's my question: am I creepy? And yes, I can appreciate the irony inherent in the creepiness of even asking that question. Nevertheless, the original querry stands. Am I creepy? Be honest, I can take it. (And I really would appreciate a response. My email address is Thanks.)

Wednesday, January 8, 2003

Tonight, Barkey and I attended the innertube water polo managers meeting. We were both wearing our champions T-shirts from last season, the season we finally won. I can't believe it's already been a year. Damn. Anyway, soon the Genesee County All-Stars will begin the quest to defend our title. We're talking a lot of smack, but in so doing taking a philosophical cue from Mohammed Ali: it ain't braggin' if it's true. So if you think you've got game, bring it. We'll be more than happy to show you how the game is played and embarrass you in front of your girlfriend. Nobody talks like the All-Stars, but nobody games like us, either.

The Genesee County All-Stars is an elite team composed of former members of the Grand Blanc High School Boys' Swimming & Diving Team and the Powers Catholic High School Boys' Swimming & Diving Team, former Bobcats and Chargers, fierce rivals, united to dominate intramural innertube water polo at the University of Michigan. All players are current (or in my case, former) U of M students, and only GBHS and PCHS alumni need apply. Do we take this way too seriously? Yes. Are we aware that we take this far too seriously? Yes. Are we going to stop taking this far too seriously? No. Not on your life, skippy. (It should be noted that in high school I hated Jon Barkey. I mean, I couldn't put a face to the name, but I knew there was a really fast Powers kid named Jon Barkey and in a very real, sports rivalish way, I hated him. Now, I quite like the guy. We're not friends, but teammates, absolutely united in our desire to achieve this singular goal.)

Also, Lindsay can soon look forward to phone messages like this, "Hey, it's me. We won our water polo game tonight! It was sweet and we kicked ass! Just wanted to tell you that.... Um, yeah. Have a good one." I'm retarded on the phone, but just as in the case of being retarded on stage with RCY, I think my genuine enthusiasm generates sufficient amounts of good will and understanding for me to get by.
At the Blinkies' wedding, I asked Lindsay if she'd come to visit me once I moved to Boston. She said of course she would. She asked if she could bring a few friends. "I'll bring my friend Tammy. You'd like her. She's perky and has big boobs." I fear I may have disappeared for a few moments through some manner of dimensional tunnel while the conversation continued without me. Yes, please, when you come to visit me in Boston where I will be utterly lonely please bring your friends. That way, it'll really be a collective vacation for the Cal graduate Psych students and I'll just stand in the background trying not to fuck up your good time. (According to Lindsay, I'm the horribly insensitive one in this friendship.) Jesu cristo.

And let us not forget there's nothing I love better than perkiness. I admit that I'm dark; the only thing that bothers me about Lindsay calling me dark is her failure to admit that she is just as dark as I am. For a student of psychology, I really don't think she knows herself all that well. Of course, I'm just going to broach this subject, not give it the in depth analysis it needs.
Now, the extended Blue Tree Whacking gang in...

Dramatis Personae, Part II
the Bald Mountain - you all know the Bald Mountain. He's a great kid.
K. Steeze - Kevin Stermer is our leader. God help us. I've never met anyone else with as much imagination or enthusiasm as Kevin. Sure, he can't talk, but he also doesn't know when to say when, so most things we do end up being too much, that is to say, just enough. Kevin's problem is that he's adorable and girls love him, but he's interested in very few of them. Kevin's an engima wrapped in a riddle buried deep beneath a mystery.
Guy Zach Nie! & Sarah - Zach Nie! is an elemental force of chaos. He isn't evil, he's just up to no good. When he starts to giggle, run, because something unfortunate is about to happen to you. Sarah Kline is his patient girlfriend; she likes video games as much if not more than he does, making her the perfect girlfriend. Zach and Sarah think it's awesome that Ben Folds has a song titled "Zak and Sara."
The Professor - Jonathan Eli Mace is the Smartest Man Alive. He's got a full ride scholarship to college; so, he's always down in Florida, damn it. I hope to one day play Trivial Pursuit against Jon. I have no illusions that I could beat him, I just want to see if I could hang, even for a couple turns. How smart is Jon? During one frustrating game, it was decided that he had to answer a question without it having been asked. He said, "Pork." When the answer was looked up on the card, it read "Pork." Holy. Fucking. Shit.
The All-American Boy - Adam Lubert, who has a twin sister, Anna. The Luberts are good people. If you look up good people in the dictionary, there's a picture of the Luberts. Lube is going to be a doctor. Good people.
the Evil Princess - Leah Sanders isn't from Grand Blanc, she doesn't act in the BTW films, and she's not a member of RCY. But she's got a mischievious streak a mile wide and she loves a good rock show. Leah's cool: she likes ska and Star Wars, but we could never spend too much time together because she really likes to party and I really don't. Still, you've got to love a girl who when she's told has to take her nose stud out for work goes out and gets a bigger one.
Liz Ele - Liz is a mystery to me. Or, more accuately, I just don't know her very well. Liz doesn't like ska or punk rock, but she loves being in RCY and MTD before it. She shows up when we ask and plays the hell out of her drums. A girl drummer. Liz is awesome. And she weighs seven pounds.
Jason Coliadis - I don't think you could really consider Jason a member of BTW anymore, but he must be mentioned as he was instrumental in the early days. Jason has portrayed Smith in all the Smith and Winkler movies and was the guitarist for Murky Transport Disaster. He and David are sworn enemies, but in high school they were best friends.
Leadership - as Jon once said, "We don't really have any leadership. David and Kevin just make the decisions." The Mountain likes the analogy of Steeze as George Lucas, the visionary, while he is Rick McCallum, the producer of Episodes I - III. Rick McCallum has been George Lucas's right hand for over ten years now. His whole job is to make what George Lucas envisions happen. That's a hell of a thing. George Lucas couldn't write dialogue to save his life, but the man has an amazing imagination. Sort of the same thing with Kevin and David. If there is one thing we Wilsons love, it's organization. (I prefer the term order.) Kevin does the imagining, David does the grunt work to pull it all together. They really work quite well together. It's extraordinary. The rest of us are little space monkeys.

Sometime I'll tell you about BTW Films. I fear we may never make another, but even if we don't we still had a good run. I can't wait to see how good I'll be at portraying Captain Dick when I'm actually forty-three years old. Someday, it would be nice to make a Smith and Winkler prequel; so, we could see Dick and Foreman in action. I can see it now, Smith and Winkler: The French Poodle Caper. Man, that'd be great.

Tuesday, January 7, 2003

Bachelorette No. 3 called this evening and before I could escape she asked, "So, when are we going to hang out?" Gee, I don't know, I've got a pretty busy schedule of putting needles in my eyes. It's a strange business, to dread the ringing of your own phone.

More on nicknames and our cast tomorrow, I promise. If I'm lying, may I spend many hours discussing in exquisite detail exactly why Bachelorette No. 3 is so very, very miserable. Perish the thought. (That's an odd duck of an expression, isn't it?)

Monday, January 6, 2003

I'm taking Lifeguard Girl out to dinner tonight, and then we're going to see Personal Velocity. This will be the first time I've actually gotten to see one of Parker Posey's indie movies in a theater. I'd like to say we're going out on a date, but we're not. I owe her dinner. Why do I owe her dinner? Because I said, fine, I'll buy you dinner. Just like that and I owe her a debt. Life is such a strange enterprise. At the lifeguard thing last night she came up to me and gave me a big hug and said, "How've you been, big guy?" I make an impression on the most random people....

Dramatis Personae, Part II coming tomorrow or the next day. Sorry for the delay.

Saturday, January 4, 2003

The hope that there is hope: Lindsay and her boyfriend are spending the next seven days together at a resort in Mexico. By herself, she went to the same resort last spring, though I suspect this time 'round there will be considerably less time spent reading and touring Mayan ruins. I suspect they will rarely leave their bedroom, but my hope is that this will be the longest they've ever spent together, especially alone together, and that she will grow quite sick of him. Or, you know, he'll pleasure her in ways she wouldn't have thought possible.

The hope that there is hope: at Emma's wedding a week ago, we were briefly discussing him. I said, "It would be worse for me if he was a scumbag. I want this kid to be fucking perfect." She replied, "He's not perfect." He's not perfect.
Wow, I would not have thought myself capable of such joy at an Ohio State victory. Huh. The important thing here is that the Big (11) Ten has brought home a second national champioship in five years, and that Michigan's last loss of the season was a close game against the eventual national champions. Ohio State was able to hang with fucking Miami, the best team in the country for the last three seasons, and that makes us and the rest of the conference look good. Sincerely, I hope Ken Dorsey's arm isn't too screwed up, because the kid's got a future in the pros; the same for McGahee's knee.

"Keep your eyes open and you might change your mind": I used to hate all three Florida schools. Miami because they talked shit, Florida State because they were as criminal as Tom Osbourne's Nebraska, and Florida because of Spurrier. Spurrier's gone, but I still hate Florida (who doesn't?); I took great glee in Georgia's mauling of the Seminoles for FSU's fifth (hurray!) loss of the year; yet, having recovered from the NCAA recruiting restrictions of the early '90s, I find nothing at all to dislike about Miami. They are respectful and hardworking, and if they walk with a certain swagger it's only because they are in fact that good. So, my rooting for OSU was not hatred for Miami, but desire for the advancement of the Big (11) Ten.

Congratulations to my uncle, Dr. Bob Little; high school bud Rich Fouts; and Pat "Woody" Oakes, the man to see if you want to hold a kick-ass pig roast in Grand Blanc.

(I'm so afraid of Mauirce Clarett right now. The stripping on the ball after the interception in the end zone? That's one of the smartest plays I've seen in the whole of my life.)

Friday, January 3, 2003

It should be noted that I use nicknames in this blog not to protect anybody's identity, but because I think they are more fun than normal names. The Watergirl, from whom I pinched the idea, uses nicknames to protect the innocent and guilty, like on Dragnet. I have no such concern for my fellow man. If you know me, there's a danger that I'll blog about you. Of course, I generally don't blog anything terribly private about anyone besides Lindsay, and then only because she knows I have a blog, knows I often talk about her on said blog, and has said she will respect my desire for her to not read the blog. Still, the truly private stuff only goes into my Journal, which only I read. So, if you know me and you don't want to be mentioned here, let me know, because a "clever" nickname will not protect you identity.

After the RCY show, Skeeter, Saturday Night, and The Watergirl all expressed some confusion over the characters in my little drama. So, in an idea again lifted from Rant & Roar, here, in no particular order, are our players:
Dramatis Personae
Me, Myself, I - my name is Michael Patrick Wilson. My parents call me Michael, but the name I use in my own head is Mike. I am The Last Angry Man. If you like me, you need help. Seriously. As I type this, I'm listening to Ben Folds's Rockin' the Suburbs, meaning by the end I'll be on about my fifth consecutive listening of "The Luckiest," one of the three most romantic songs I've ever heard. ("The Luckiest," "New York City" by They Might Be Giants from Factory Showroom, and "Josie" by Blink-182 from Dude Ranch. I've yet to decide upon an order.) I'm cynical, but quite the sentimentalist once you get to know me.
the Bald Mountain - my little brother, David. He's been the most important thing in the world to me since he was born (I was two and three months).
Lindsay - Lindsay Shaw, the love of my life. To my great sorrow, I am only her best friend. She is amazing.
Skeeter - my self-described soulmate, Julie (last name withheld by request). Julie's been in my triumvirate of best friends since high school, and I honestly don't know what I'd do without her.
Dylweed & Kristy - another triumvier, Dylan Haney was named after either Bob Dylan or Dylan Thomas, depending on his mood when you ask; Kristy is his charming wife. He's watched me grow and change since middle school and for whatever reason Dylan understands how I see the world, even when it's not how he sees it. We just think on the same wavelength.
Saturday Night Latham - SNL, for Scott Nielson Latham. Also called Scottie J. or Scottie Too Hottie. Scott's just a good man, a truly decent person; he's kind in a way I just can't fathom. Sadly, he has the world's worst haircut.
Boof Daddy - Steve Booth, Scott's twin brother, though they aren't related. Steve can climb vertical poles and lift seven times his own body weight.
Steve Reed - um, his name is Steve Reed. We were going to room together freshman year at Michigan, but then Notre Dame came through with some scholarship money and he was able to fulfill his dream of attedning that dreadful institution. Steve's an ace with numbers and an incredibly intense guy.
Justinandemily - once, my friend Justin Dugas and his girlfriend, Emily Mathews (yes, with only one T). Justinandemily (sometimes Emilyandjustin) are now one conglomorated lifeform, a mock married. Alone among mock marrieds, I don't think they plan to get married or engaged any time soon.
Neutral Man - my buddy and housemate Brad "Brado" Dupay. Brad dresses like he's thrity-five, but he's still a kid. I wish once in a while he'd stand up for what he believes. I doubt we'll stay in touch once we no longer live together. I hate Brad's column in The Newsletter. His evil ex-girlfriend = Miss Missy.
the Flying Dutchman - my housemate and new buddy Mike "Fatty" Lindemulder. He and Brad are high school friends. I like Mike because he believes what he believes, even when I disagree. Again, I think we'll lose touch, but that's okay.
The Plate - I like Jim Platte, in that I like him whenever we hang out, but he once betrayed me without blinking an eye. Truly, a friend of convenience. I'll be glad to be rid of him.
Alber & SSG - Mike Alber and his girlfriend Julie Smith. Alber and I could have been lifelong friends, but he lacks the courage to honor his moral convictions. Also, he's surrendered his soul to SSG, a perfect example of women at their worst. I met Lindsay through SSG, which sickens me almost as much as their continuing friendship. SSG stands for "slutty, slutty girlfriend," which is what one of her high school friends called her once. A kinder meaning is "soul-sucking girlfriend," which no one can deny.
The Watergirl - I only first met Katie (last ane withheld by request) on Monday, even though we attended Michigan during the same four years and shared many common acquaintances and friends. (Technically, we did meet at least once, but neither of us seems to remember it.) I like Katie because her blog annoys me as much as it amuses me, yet I cannot help but keep reading it. She has a stunning singing voice and is a great songwriter, but it appears she's too chicken to perform her stuff live; it is the greater world's loss.

Next time, the extended Blue Tree Whacking gang, et alii; the importance of Real Can of Yams, Skip Carmichael, and Smith and Winkler; and the origin of the Rebel Black Dot Society.

Thursday, January 2, 2003

Sweet! I thought that the previous post had been completely lost due to the evil machinations of Netscape (on this computer, Explorer works even worse), but now I find that it was not. Hurrah! As I speak, BTW Day is morphing. I'm hoping to join in; I don't feel sick, but I'm afraid to eat anything more substantial than toast since I still don't know what caused me to blow chunks yesterday. (Lovely post, aren't you glad you read this blog?)

After the show on Monday, while the kids got blitzed at Nick Neu's house, Skeeter, Saturday Night Latham, The Watergirl, and I hit Shap's for some late night dining and conversation. Given that there is no equivalent of Conor's in GB/Flint, I can't think of anything I'd rather do than hang out in a greasy spoon and talk. But then again, I'm lame, having never had much affection for parties. Paradoxically, I really liked playing host ot the 1213 parties we had the first year I lived there. Hm, strange. I'm just babbling, I don't really have anything interesting to say.
New Year's Eve and New Year's Day...
The Good
Michigan 38, Florida 30 in the Outback Bowl. So far, Michigan, Purdue, Minnesota, and Wisconsin have won their bowl games; Penn State is the Big Ten's only loss. Iowa plays tomorrow, against Southern Cal, and Ohio State takes on Miami of Florida in Friday's national champioship game. Remember, Big Ten loyalty extends to all but Michigan State; so, though it slightly pains me to say it, go Bucks! (And please, let's not have a riot this time. Ha ha.)

Today, I finished In Pharaoh's Army and I'm rapidly devouring Back in the World, both by Tobias Wolff. When I return to Ann Arbor, I may have to reread The Night in Question, his latest collection of short stories.

Although more will be said about this in our next catagory, I'm really grateful for the old friends I've been able to see this past week. Lying in bed earlier, I was trying to get in a funk about Lindsay's boyfriend, but I just couldn't; all I could think of was how she felt in my arms as we said goodbye and all seemed right with the world.

The Bad
Lindsay and Skeeter have returned to Berkeley and New York, respectively. Saturday Night Latham, Boof Daddy, Steve Reed, Mr. & Mrs. Blinky, all gone as well, scattered once again to the four winds. It will never make sense to me why we abandon our friends to pick up stakes and move across the country. (Nevertheless, within months I will be a resident of Boston, Massachusetts. Go figure.) Anyway, they're all gone, and it will be too long before I see any of them again.

For no discernable reason, today I puked my guts out. After the Outback Bowl, I started to feel an odd sensation from my stomach, and by the end of the Penn State-Auburn game (the Capital One Bowl, formerly the Citrus Bowl), I had to rush upstair and ralph. Since then, I've felt vaguely ill and I am seriously concerned that I may have to bail on BTW Day tomorrow. Damn it, no, not BTW Day... son of a bitch, of all the rotten stinking timing.

The Ugly
Saturday, December 28 and Monday, December 30 were two of the best days of my life. Honestly, though I feel like shit right now, I'm actually rather hopeful for the future. In one of Wolff's stories, "Sister," I encountered this passage:

A few minutes ago she had nearly been killed and now there was nobody to talk to about it, to see how afraid she was and tell her not to worry, that it was over now. That everything was going to be all right. And Marty understood that there was never going to be anyone to tell her these things. She had no idea why this should be so; it was just something she knew.

I have things I want to say about hope and desperation, but I've tried several drafts and right now I just don't have it in me to say them properly. Nevertheless, I can say with great certainty that the reign the dark bastard enjoyed in November shan't return soon; though she's broken my heart countless times before, at present I am once again a devoted believer in the fairest of maidens, Hope. Or at the very least, the hope that there is hope.