Wednesday, December 31, 2003

Happy brithday to my mom!

Star Trek on DVD
At present, I own half of the ten Star Trek movies on DVD:
Star Trek: The Motion Picture The Director's Edition (new to me!)
Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan The Director's Edition
Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home Special Collector's Edition
Star Trek V: The Final Frontier Special Collector's Edition (new to me!)
Star Trek: Nemesis (X)

Via an gift certificate from Uncle Bob and Aunt Kathy (thanks!), within days I will also own:
Star Trek III: The Search For Spock Special Collector's Edition

I was thinking about pre-ordering Star Trek VI, but Star Trek III was a more natural fit for my peculiar and pervasive sense of order.

I also own all seven seasonal box sets of Star Trek Deep Space Nine.

All seven seasons of Star Trek: The Next Generation are currently available, but they are not as high a priority as DS9 and thus not worth the same financial sacrifices; fear not, though, I will own them in time.

Beginning in January, Star Trek: Voyager will become available season by season on a schedule similar to DS9's. Completeness be damned, I suffered through Voyager once, I'm not doing it again.

Tuesday, December 30, 2003

We shall never see his like again...
Last year's Tommy's Frogs show was one of the greatest nights of my life. Real Can of Yams played our best show to date; I was surrounded by my friends, the BTW crew of the Bald Mountain, Zach Nie!, the Professor, and K. Steeze and those cool kids Skeeter, The Watergirl, Saturday Night, and Never Girl; and the Local was full of happy, hopeful people. Tonight, the Professor and K. Steeze are exiled in California; without Kevin there's no RCY; the dark, barren pit of Metropolis serves as the Local-in-Exile, housing a quarter as many people; and I was alone except for the Mountain of Love and the Conchshell. He was on stage and though she and I are civil, we just don't jive; so, in effect I was alone. This year the world is not as awesome a place.

Before the Banzai Beard Bonanza
I do not believe in New Year's resolutions. If you are going to make a change, just make the change. The artificial barrier of a new year doesn't make it any more likely you'll actually succeed. Just do it. Or don't. What does that have to do with the calendar? That said, the Bonzai Beard Bonanza begins on January 1, as this will make it easy to keep track of how much time has passed. I'm really excited about the coming debacle; it's going to be awful, which in BTW terms means it's going to be awesome.

I hate shaving, but I love being clean shaven. The nice thing is that when the "beard" is finally tamed, my imperial and long sideburns will triumphantly return. Wicked sweet.

I know the Banzai Beard Bonanza is a dreadfully bad idea. That's the only reason I want to do it.

I have The Watergirl's book, Where is Joe Merchant?

I have Zach Nie!'s book, A Clockwork Orange.

Zach Nie! has my Star Trek: Deep Space Nine seventh season DVD box set. (The book is being held for ransom until the return of the DVDs. In the past, Zach has had problems respecting other people's property.)

Skeeter has my book, What She Saw....

Sardine has my book, About a Boy.

The Professor has my Star Trek: Deep Space Nine first, second, and third season DVD box sets.

Restore the Roar
As soon as Steve Mariucci was hired as the coach of my beloved Detroit Lions, I said that all I could ask is that in the 2003 season the Lions post a 5-11 record. 5-11 is not good, but that's as many wins as the two seasons under Marty Mornhinweig combined. This year, the Lions posted a 5-11 record. I have never been so happy about an eleven-loss season. Thank you, Mr. Mariucci, I believe you when you say we're building something good here.

Now, if only Matt Millen would drop dead....

Self-Destruction Might Be the Answer
I want Liz Phair to use me, abuse me, and toss me aside as soon as she's bored. Please.

Monday, December 29, 2003

Deep In the Heart of Darkness... er, Texas
Actually, the long-dreaded trip to Austin, Texas was not nearly as bad as I'd feared. Make no mistake, Friday was one of the single worst days of my life - two and a half hours sleep, up at 4am, a horribly cramped commuter jet to Altanta's fabulous airport, the fabulousness of the layover at Atlanta's fabulous airport mared by my extreme fatigue and ill-humor, a dizzying mix of greeting the oddball relatives, a quick trip to the supermarket, and then a dinner of my aunt's godawful cooking (she was serving turducken before it was "cool") - but I genuinely enjoyed yesterday's slideshow of pictures from the '60s, including the period that my dad's family lived in Brussels, Belgium, and the flipping through the old photo albums, including those taken by my great-grandmother during her years in Imperial India. My brother and sister will never forgive me for saying so, but I actually had a decent time.

My late Grandma Wilson, may she rest in peace, was born Priscilla Gray in Simla, India, in 1919. Her parents were Dr. Ernest R. Gray, DDS, an American, and Maude E. (Puddephatt) Gray, an Englishwoman. She lived the first few years of her life in Imperial India. As a young woman, she excelled in academics and graduated from Duke University in 1941. She gave birth to and raised four children; lived in such places as Brussels, Belgium and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; and traveled to all but one continent (sorry, Antarctica). She was a fiercely intelligent, opinionated, attractive woman. And at the end of her extraordinary life, she died alone in a modest house in Austin, Texas. This is why I want to die at 60, in the middle of my life, at the height of my happiness, having seen my (hypothetical) children grown into young adults, maybe married, maybe having given me a grandmunchkin or two. I want to die while I still have something to live for, not after I've outlived everything I cherished about my life.

I got Finding Nemo for Christmas. Hells yeah!

Toy Story
A Bug's Life
Toy Story 2
Monsters, Inc.
Finding Nemo

and in the pipeline...
The Incredibles

We are living in a golden age.

Arthur Dent's daughter, Random
I'm trying to convince Sardine to chop her hair; is that wrong? Not break out the razor and shave her head, but a buzz a la Robin Tunney in Empire Records. Dude, chicks with really short hair can be hot!

Tuesday, December 23, 2003

I want a horrorshow girlflesh, but not at the price of my soul.
This evening, I saw the Seinfeld clip about Relationship George trying to kill Independent George. There will never be a Relationship Mike to threaten Independent Mike. If she doesn't like Independent Mike, her loss. If this means Independent Mike will be forever alone and die embittered and unmourned, so be it. I'd rather be The Last Angry Man and be alone than sell out to be with someone.

I have a very cruel sense of humor. I hear about bad things happening to people and my first response is to laugh. I probe for weakness and if I smell blood, I will always attack. I am honest enough to admit that it is not always good natured; I mean it when I say I am cruel. If you don't like it, might I suggest you spend your time with someone else perhaps?
A common axiom states, "It doesn't matter whether you win or lose, it's how you play the game." A less familiar collorary asks, "If winning doesn't matter, why keep score?"

The Mountain of Love and the Conchshell are playing Scrabble without keeping score. I am by nature an extremely competitive individual.* I don't understand why you would ever play a game without keeping score. If you don't care who wins or loses, you might as well do something else, like read or make out. The thrill of victory and the agony of defeat, that's why we have games in the first place. If you are not interested in either of those things, why are you playing a game at all?

*So competitive, in fact, that I will freely acknowledge that under my captaincy and with my support, the Genesee County All-Stars played an extremely dirty game. I do not deny nor hide this fact; water polo, even innertube water polo, is a violent game. You don't like it, play something else. About the All-Stars, I could be accurately quoted as saying "My first and last concern is winning."

Tomorow, I get to sleep in for the first time in eight days! Shut up, it's a big deal to me. You don't know, dude, not having weekends sucks ass.

Well, I'm off to amuse the kiddies; they're bored with their non-competitive Scrabble.
This is based almost entirely on my love for the word doom. DOOOOOMED!

Zim // Zim is basically the star of the show. He's
trying to take over the world but his enemy,
Dib, is keeping it from him. His quote is
"Invader blood runs through my veins like
giant radioactive rubber pants! The pants
command me! Do not ignore my veins!"

Which Invader Zim character are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

Monday, December 22, 2003

Except for the fact that I hate (sic I am no good at) foreign languages, I have the strongest and most curious desire to learn Portugese.

M I K E is back. Even less waterproof than before, but back nonetheless.

Last day of retail tomorrow, thank Gord. (My thanks to Mad Mod Aisha for the link. You remember Aisha, the girl who wouldn't go to Prom with me. Hee hee, she's going to yell at me for that.) I am looking forward to umemployment.

Give it up for Nicole Bonner, who is way too cool to be true.

I used to think I was ugly, but then I gradually began to realize I was thoroughly average-looking. The older I get, the better looking I get; so, by this point I am actually handsome. Not pretty boy handsome, but between my infectious smile and mischievious eyes, I am one handsome devil. I won't be for long, though; I steadfastly refure to wear suntan lotion and it is only a matter of time before I look like Robert Redford a.k.a. an old baseball mitt. Now if I only, at age 24, I could get my acne to go away....

"I can't wait until tomorrow."
"Why? What happens tomorrow?"
"I get better looking every day."
--Larry Day (this joke is the only good thing that soulless s.o.b. ever did, but at least it's a damned good joke)
My friendship with Never Girl would seem to be at an end, at least as far as face to face interaction. She now travels exclusively in the company of Never Boy and, unwilling to have the two of us meet, it would seem that I shall never again talk to her in person. Ah, well, 'tis her loss, as I am one handsome devil.
The Mountain of Love has been done with school and school-related shite since Friday.
Nights spent in Troy: 2
Nights spent in GB: 0

After all, what is a lifetime of devout friendship compared to a pretty smile....

The Nine Midgets
Senator Joe Liebermann of Connecticut
Representative Dick Gephart of Missouri
fmr. Governor Howard Dean, M.D., of Vermont
Senator John Kerry of Massachussetts
Senator John Edwards of North Carolina
Representative Dennis Kucinich of Ohio
fmr. Senator Carol Mosley Braun of Illinois
fmr. General Wesley Clark of Arkansas
"The Reverend" Al Sharpton of New York

It's not that President Bush is an excellent candidate, it's just that he's extremely fortunate in his opponents. I mean, Vice President Gore? Bloated corpses fished out of Boston Harbor have more charisma.

Beard Me
In the new year, I am going to attempt to grow a beard. That is, I am not going to shave for over two months, between January 1 and March 8; whether or not this will result in the formation of anything that could be called a beard is highly speculative. This is plainly a bad idea, but the real question is this: is this merely a bad idea or a dreadfully bad idea? It has been determined that this is a dreadfully, dreadfully bad idea. Almost a monumentally bad idea and certainly a fool's undertaking. Thus, it is with great enthusiasm that I am loooking forward to this debacle. After all, any mistake worth making is worth making huge. Wish me luck, this is going to be awful. I can't wait!
"I want to be the minority
I don't need your authority
Down with the moral majority
'Cause I want to be the minority!"
--Green Day, "Minority" from Warning.

What you may miss upon first listen is that this is an extremely punk album. It doesn't have a lot of loud guitars or screaming in lieu of singing, but the lyrics are pure punk. Don't just do what you're told. Don't mindlessly conform. Green Day never sold out, they're punk enough to know they can experiment and still remains punks.

I had a blast with Sardine yesterday, but nothing's going to happen. Back to square one, I am once again bereft of any prospects.

Holiday Itinerary
Dec. 22-25: home, GB; willing to hang out, but also want to spend quality time with Mountain and Evil sis.

Dec. 26-29: Austin, Texas; God help me.

Dec. 30: home, GB; Tommy's Frogs show at The Local in Exile (Metropolis), no RCY this year since Steeze is stuck in La-La-Land.

Dec. 31: home, GB; happy birthday, Mom!; once again, I have no New Year's Eve plans.

Jan. 1: home, GB: I'm watching football all day, leave me alone.

Jan. 2-whenever: home, GB; the Mountain will probably bolt for Troy (home of the Conchshell) as soon as possible, so I might be free.

Sunday, December 21, 2003

New episodes of Teen Titans in January! Sweet! Star Trek: Enterprise, Stargate SG-1, Teen Titans, man, that second week of January is looking fantastic. Everything's coming up Mike.

And now to pull my sheets out of the dryer.

Saturday, December 20, 2003

The Mountain was here today, but left a few minutes ago to return to Ann Arbor. (He has a paying gig at a church there, which is hilarious given that he in an atheist.) My parents are entertaining their awful friends Vapid and Vapid's Husband this evening; over dinner, they were talking about our upcoming trip to Texas (which I am dreading) and all of a sudden they all started bashing the Alamo. Who the fuck rips on the Alamo? It's the Alamo! You know, "Remember the Alamo"?! Great Caesar's ghost, what could be more un-American? Are they going to start making fun of George Washington's teeth next? I have no idea what the fuck they were thinking.

How exactly do sneezes cause shooting pains in the shoulders? This is fucked up.

Today's been a really whiny day. I'm sorry about that.

Tomorrow, Sardine! Woo hoo!
Good news: I'm getting over my cold and my raspy cough, which was always periodic, never persistant, is gone.
Bad news: We're into the massive nasal congestion phase, ewwwwwww.
All the unhappiness in my life revolves around money. I live with my parents, which is sad, but I can deal with that. I don't have a girlfriend, which is sad, but with my extensive experience in this field I can deal with that. I don't get to see my brother very often, which is sad, but he is in love and I can deal with that. What I canot deal with is that I wake up every day to go to a stupid job I don't enjoy to earn a too small paycheck and send all of that money out to my creditors, but the more money I give them, the more they bother me to give them the rest. They bothered me much less when I wasn't paying them anything. That is the definition of demoralizing, when you are punished for finally taking steps to corect your mistakes. All I want for Christmas is $1,000.

"Is there anyone out there? 'Casue it's getting harder and harder to breathe."

Back to the sales floor. *sigh* I could be listening to This American Life right now....

Friday, December 19, 2003

Two creeds by which I try to live my life, both from science fiction novels if that tells you anything about me, the first from Alfred Bester's The Stars My Destination and the second from Frank Herbert's Dune:

"He was one hundred and seventy days dying and not yet dead."

"Fear is the mindkiller."

I need a plan. Not even necessarily a good plan, just a plan. Once I have that as a fallback position, I can start working on a good plan, and then a great plan, but before all that I just need a plan in case things go south. Ah, I've got it. If all else fails, I'll makey my way to Boston, not to live, but to sign on to a shrimp boat. Lousy hours, constant peril, decent money. A sailor's life for me!

Ah, well, back to work. A legitmiate question, though: why is there a computer back here in the break room with internet access? This can only lead to employees slacking off, like I am now. Curious, that.

Thursday, December 18, 2003

There is definitely something wrong with me today. I got the usual amount of sleep last night, but even after a tasty dinner I still feel off. I'm not hungry, but there's a slight fog over my eyes, a haze around the edges of everything. Basically, I just feel like there's a weight on my brain, slowing my down a little and putting the world off-kilter.

Not even the one-two punch of Star Trek: The Next Generation and Scrubs put things right. Wild.

Tomorrow, I meet my destiny...

... I have no idea what that's supposed to mean.

North Atlantic Treaty organization (NATO) Code
a = alpha
b = bravo
c = charlie
d = delta
e = echo
f = foxtrot
g = gulf
h = hotel
i = india
j = joliet
k = kilo
l = lima
m = mike
n = november
o = oscar
p = papa
q = quebec
r = romeo
s = sierra
t = tango
u = ultra (this is the only one I'm not certain about)
v = victor
w = whiskey
x = x-ray
y = yankee
z = zulu

My initials are wicked sweet: Mike Papa Whiskey
This past week, I've cut my caloric intake about in half. This is, in the long run, a good thing. In the short term, however, I've been vaguely dizzy for the past couple hours. Woo!

I ran into Korpi this afternoon. Yeah, that's pretty much it.

I've decided that I'm not going to apologize when I step on Sammy. If he chooses to walk around my feet while I'm getting something out of the closet, well, sucks to be him. You'd think one of these years he'd figure out that underfoot is not the safest place to stand. I love you, Sammy, but it's your own fault.
Dear Media,
The flu is not news. Call me when it is the influenza pandemic of 1919, but until then kindly shut the fuck up.
Jeers and hisses,
M. Patrick Wilson

The Dow is bouncing around 10,000, Saddam is in US custody, and Howard Dean is almost a lock to get the Democratic presidential nomination. Things are looking up.

I had an excellent conversation with Sardine last night, and we set plans to hang out this weekend. Wicked.

In less wicked news, vandals are once again posting on the BTW Forums. Three times this has happened now and our vigilant adminstrator, K. Steeze, has no inclination to stop it. *sigh* On a truly public forum, I would not mind, but there are supposed to be the BTW Forums. I think in his film school arrogance Kevin sometimes forgets that he alone is not BTW, we as a group are BTW.

Wednesday, December 17, 2003

"I know you're not on right now, but I hope you get a chance to read this. Would you follow me? If I decided that this life is just so much bullshit, that I could not be a part of it anymore, if I dropped off the face of the earth, assumed a new identity, and styled myself as the greatest villain of our time, a madman bent on the destruction of the world, would you follow me? I don't know if I could do it without you."
One hundred years ago today, Man spat in the face of the old gods. For all Man's triumphs - medicine, the industrial revolution, democracy - the sky remained the exclusive domain of the birds and the supernatural. Yes, we had balloons and airships, but these are hardly practical machines. Zeus, Horus, Marduk, Shiva, they alone controlled the sky, while we were bound by feet of clay. But then came Wilbur and Orville Wright and for the first time Man flew as high as Daedalus, instead of falling to earth like Icarus. We all complain about air travel, but only because it is so common now that we take it for granted that one can be on the other side of the world - in practical terms, the far side of the entire universe - in a matter of hours. What a time to be alive. My thanks to the Wright Bros. and their Flyer.

(Key to mythology: Zeus was in the ancient Greek pantheon, Horus Egyptian, Mardul babylonian, and Shiva Indian; of these once mighty pagan idols, only Shiva is still worshipped today. Daedalus was a brilliant engineer in ancient Greek mythology. He designed the Labyrinth that imprisoned the Minotaur and also the waxy wings used by himself and Icarus, his son. We all know the story of Icarus's arrogance and demise, but what many overlook is that Daedalus did not fly to close to the Sun and was thus able to successfully escape his imprisonment.)
Reality Bites... So, Just Ignore It
I love Kofi Annan for his doggedness. The United Nations evacuated its missions in Iraq this past summer as soon as the bombing of their Baghdad headquarters resulted in the tragic death of Sergio Vieira de Mello. Yet, the illustrious Secretary-General continues to insist the UN play a central role in the reconstruction. What makes him think that his organization wouldn't turn tail and run once again as soon as they are attacked? And make no mistake, the insurgency continues; so, a major UN presence in-country would be an attractive target. The UN runs at the first sign of trouble, but wants to play Atlas. By that logic, the UN would be in control of Iraq, but would flee as soon as the first bomb went off, thus leaving a power vacuum for the Baathists and Jihadists to fill. How exactly, senor, would this result in a more stable Iraq? How exactly would this encourage the development of democracy?

In other news, the recently concluded European Union summit failed to agree upon a draft constitution. Bwa ha ha ha ha ha ha! (Please don't think I am against a more unified Europe, I'm all for it, I just don't want to see it organized along President Chirac's model, i.e. a force to check and obstruct American "hegemony." A partner EU would be wonderful; an obstructionist EU must be stopped.)

Tuesday, December 16, 2003

Before they were on MTV, I saw Maroon 5 opening for somebody at The Shelter (the basement of St. Andrew's Hall for you poor unfortunates who have never been). I don't remember who they were opening for, nor did their music make much of an impression. Maybe they were on the same bill as The Impossibles, opening for godawful Grade? Eh, I don't know. In any event, is there anyone out there? It's not necessarily getting harder and harder to breath, but it would be nice to be certain.

Cat, in the name of all that is holy, I cannot pet you if you are behind the chair; so, please stop whining!

The Stars My Destination
America - National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Europe - European Space Agency
Japan - Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency

I love how we don't call ours "American," but simply "National." Uh, yeah, we're pretty sure we know who we are as a nation without putting our name in the title. But, hey, good luck to you guys. As the late, great Sam Kinison said, in reference to American astronauts being the only humans to ever set foot on the Moon, "You want to impress us? Bring back our fucking flag!"

Moving on, like Homer Simpson's yodel, man, the seventh season of Deep Space Nine is so good I wish I was watching it right now.

Monday, December 15, 2003

Things to consider: were we currently in the third year of the Gore Administration, Saddam Hussein would still be sitting quite comfortably in what is now Paul Bremer's office. For all of his flaws, President Bush at least follows FDR's advice, "Whatever you do, do something. If that turns out to be the wrong thing, do something else. But don't just do nothing, do something."

Pow! Biff! Pang!
There are a lot of movies based on comic books these days, both for good and for ill.
X-Men (2000) - man, what a great movie
Ghost World (2000) - haven't yet seen it, but I intend to
Spider-Man (2002) - you're the man, Sam Raimi
Daredevil (2003) - this movie sucked, and not because of Affleck, surprisingly enough
X2 (2003) - everything that was right about the first movie, and it corrected the minor flaws
The Hulk (2003) - sucked ass
The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen (2003) - turn your brain off and have some fun; sidenote, Alan Moore sucks
~The Punisher (2004) - I would not see this movie for love or money
~Hellboy (2004) - I've never read a Hellboy comic, but I adore the trailer
~The Amazing Spider-Man (2004) - this should be awesome
~"Batman 5" (2005) - Christian Bale is going to make a great Dark Knight

I am a Christian. Forgiveness is the foundation of Christianity. I am not very good with forgiveness. Thus, I am not a very good Christian. (Snappy response: yeah, that's why I'm Catholic.) However, I've decided that I need to work on forgiveness. Thus, I am no longer mad at Rick Berman, the guru of all things Star Trek, for the nasty things he said about about the last two seasons of Deep Space Nine. Berman is the man who guided The Next Generation to greatness, and though he co-created Voyager, he also co-created both DS9 and Enterprise. On balance, he has done far more good than harm. And so, in an uncharacteristic move, I forgive him.

Sunday, December 14, 2003

Huh, this certainly wasn't the expected result.

Are You Naughty or Nice?


Mike Wilson, "Captain Thumbs-Up," Aqua-Cadet No. 0003432! Until yesterday, my Aqua-Cadet codename was Phat Bat. But, during yesterday's show Chainsaw, the Prince of Karate, had to change a string on his guitar; when he returned, I gave him a thumbs up, he pointed at me, and said, "Thanks, Captain Thumbs-Up!" Chainsaw gave me a new codename! Holy Toledo, that's awesome! The Mountain was, is, and will continue to be Alphaman. Phat Bat and Alphaman? Nay, it's Alphaman and Captain Thumbs-Up!

Also yesterday, in between Blueprint 76 and The Aquabats!, Alphaman went looking for the Duffmeister, to see if he could get us backstage after the show. While he was gone, I made my first single-serving rock show friend. I mean, I've traded banter with other fans before, but this girl initiated an ongoing conversation and we skanked together all through the show; her name was Crystal and she was very impressed by both my costume and that I'd seen The Aquabats! live four years ago at The Shelter, the last time they were in the Motor City. A cute girl (wearing glasses! that's so hot!) who likes The Aquabats!, I should be kicking myself for not asking her to marry me.

The opening band was terrible. Not the worst band I've ever seen live, but only because I've seen Har Mar Superstar. (After that, Hell will seem tame.) The vocalist was pathetic; his entire stage persona was a bad impersonation of Jack Black. Only, you know, Jack Black is both funny and highly ironic; this fat fuck was just sad. Anyway, there was a group of idiots thrashing about and I found myself on the edge of their pit. As one kid ran past for the seventeenth or eighteenth time, without even thinking, I just reached out, grabbed his shirt, and yanked him backwards until he fell flat on his back. Several other kids fell on top of him, and of course I pitched in to help get people off the floor. I don't know why I did it. This kid was huge, bigger than me, but he wasn't even the most annoying jerk in the pit. When he sideswiped me, I guess I just wasn't in the mood. Huh. I just threw him to the ground.

In Other News...
The Mountain has taken issue with yesterday's comment about him going hippie. He has a point; I said he talked about sending waves of love out to the whole world, but that is inaccurate. He talked about sending waves of loving kindness to the whole world. Oh, my mistake, that's much less hippie.

We caught Saddam. Insert Nelson Munch's "Ha ha!" The Iraqi War Crimes Tribunal is going to execute your ass, haus. You should have put up a fight, thus commiting suicide by proxy.

Saturday, December 13, 2003

In his fledgling bloggy blog, the Mountain has talked about wishing he could send waves of love out to the whole world. Holy 900-foot Jesus, Batman, my brother's gone hippie! I fucking hate hippies. (For a terrible pun, I could have said, "I fucking Haight hippies!")


In any event, Neutral Man's party was a fan-fucking-tastic time! Yeah, it was a sausage fest withe the usual gang of idiots, but the Flying Dutchman, his buddy Dave, and I had a frabulous discussion of the issues and history surrounding current U.S. policy toward China. (I may give Dave the nickname Chinese Dave, because he's Chinese, speaks fluent Cantonese, and gets better service at Chinese restaurants. Or maybe Dave Xiaoping....) The fair Lady Strife was hot as always (her last name is spelled differently, but it is honestly pronounced "strife"). I borrowed the Dutchman's copy of Wild Swans and mildly lamented the fact that Neutral Man did not drink enough for his idiotic "Drunk Brad" persona to emerge.

Friday, December 12, 2003

Jonas: "Don't get me wrong, I love the job."
Daniel: "Who could argue? Lousy hours, constant peril."
I am the luckiest bastard on the face of the earth. Without question. I have had a singularly extraordinary day. Once back from a day of wage-slavery, I watched the series finale of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, "What You Leave Behind," followed by all the bonus material in the seventh season box set. Watching this series which I love and have loved so very much end, I cried softly. I have seen "What You Leave Behind" several times, but every time the impact is simply overwhelming. Zach Nie!, when you get to the end of the series, if it is possible, I'd love to watch the finale with you.

Also, my enigmatically loyal friend Olga emailed me today. Olga's fantastic, yet I am inexplicably terrible about writing back to her. But like clockwork, every few months she'll send an email into, for all intents and purposes, the void. I always feel I owe her a good letter, and so put it off again and again until suddenly months have gone by and she writes again. Thank you, Olga, you made my day, and it was already a hell of a day.

Green Day's Warning may quite possibly be the greatest album of all time.

Danny Boy called me to ask if I want to go to a basketball game tomorrow. I'd love to, but I have to wage-slave, and then the Mountain and I are going to see The Aquabats! at St. Andrew's Hall. I honestly thought I'd never see The Aquabats! in concert again. Wow.

In a few minutes, I'll be leaving for A2 and an end-of-student-teaching/graduation party for Neutral Man. It feels nice to be ending my inadvertantly self-imposed isolation.

I unintentionally missed this week's Zooey Deschanel Appreciation Day on Wednesday, but fear not, in five days' time we shall appreciate once again.

Thursday, December 11, 2003

There are seven deadly sins: pride, lust, envy, anger, greed, gluttony, and sloth. I'm, well, I'm pretty much guilty of all seven at one time or another. Aw, crap. The kicker, though, the one that might win me a permanent vacation on the beaches of the lake of fire, would defintely have to be pride. The first sin, a sin which predates Mankind. Figures. Damn it.

Wednesday, December 10, 2003

I hope my sister had a good day yesterday.

My brother had a concert last night, but we completely forgot about it. Ha. The Mountain called me as he was leaving the concert site to ask me where we'd been. I told him we simply forgot. Everybody got a good laugh out of that. of course, when Mom called him later, she felt terrible. Oh, Mom, we've got to teach you to see the humor in things. Hee hee hee.

Battlestar Galactica was pretty good. Not mind-blowingly fantastic, but I'd like to see it picked up as a series. Though it would hard to adequately recast the Edward James Olmos and Mary McDonnel roles; I doubt either would commit to series television, but it would be incredible if they did.
United Federation of Planets
Earth; humans, Vulcans, Andorians, Tellarites, Betazoids, Trill, Bolians, Bajorans, Deltans, et al.
President, Council

Klingon Empire
Qo'noS; Klingons, Kriosians, et al.
Emperor (ceremonial), Chancellor, High Council

Romulan Star Empire
Romulus; Romulans, Remans, et al.
Praetor, Proconsuls, Senate

Ferengi Alliance
Ferenginar; Ferengi
Grand Nagus, Ferengi Commerce Authority (FCA)

Cardassian Union
Cardassia; Cardassians
Detapa Council

Tholian Assembly
Tholia; Tholians

Breen Confederacy
Breen; Breen

"new Founder homeworld"; Founders, Vorta, Jem'Hadar, Karemma, Teplans, Yaderans, T-Rogorans, et al.
Founders, Vorta
The main problem with Catch-22's album Alone in the Crowd? It's good, but it's too short.

Tuesday, December 9, 2003

I'm not on trial here! This is a witch hunt!

I wonder what it would be like to be sitting in a bar one night and at the next table there were three guys having a really intense conversation. Three buddies, Mike, Gabe, and Luke, who've known each other forever, since back in the old neighborhood. After all this time, would there still be anger? Would there still be blame for that one awful day, for Luke's one huge, terrible mistake, for which he can never be forgiven? Would Mike be mad at Luke for trying to be big man on campus or would he be mad because he'd been required to turn on his best friend? Or after all this time, would there just be weariness, a tired resignation to the way things are and ever will be? What do angels and demons talk about when they meet in human form? This has always fascinated me, as I've always assumed that before the Fall, the Archangel Michael, the Archangel Gabriel, and the Archangel Lucifer had been best friends. Assuming angels even have friendships.
The effectiveness of a pierced belly button on a girl depends entirely on the girl. Some girls have great, flat stomachs, but they just weren't meant to have a pierced belly button. Other girls have less than ideal tummies, but the piercing compliments their shape perfectly. The perfect storm is the hottie with the perfect stomach who pulls off her piercing with style and subtlety. However much I like these few glorious stomachs, things are getting to where I'm almost entirely against pierced belly buttons on girls. At first, it was cool, but now it's as common as a tattoo in the small of the back; everyone and her sister has one, the other, or both. What was once exciting is now almost a negative, a symbol of mindless conformity. A girl with a pierced belly button in 2003 is about as innovative as a guy with a Van Dyke in 1996.
Happy Birthday!
Happy birthday to my sister, Evil Lisa. Love ya', Lise.

It's too bad USC got screwed out of the national championship game (though hopefully this will hasten the demise of the godawful BSC system), but the upside is that for this one year at least, honor has been restored to college football: the Big Ten champion and the Pac-10 champion are meeting in the "granddaddy of them all," the Rose Bowl. Woo hoo! That said, even with the distinct disadvantage of John Navarre, Michigan is going to beat the tar out of Southern Cal. The Trojans' vaunted offense has made its reputation against Pac-10 competition; they have simply never seen the like of a fearsome Big Ten defense. Heh heh heh, lambs to the slaughter.

And from a mythological standpoint, why in Zeus's name would you name yourselves the Trojans? The Trojans lost! Hector was slain by Achilles and his body dragged around the walls of proud Ilium. Wily Odysseus's plan worked perfectly - the Trojan Horse, for the ignorant - and because Cassandra's visions were ignored, Priam's house fell. The men of Troy were killed, the women and children sold into bondage, and Helen, the woman for whom the Trojans had fought the war, was returned to her husband, Menelaus. Ten years of war, and when it was over Troy was no more. Why would you name yourselves after the losers? And the Trojans didn't just lose, they were all but wiped from the face of the earth. They didn't just lose, as a nation they ceased to exist.
Here's a question: what is it with people and being judged? Visit any random blog and I'd say there's a fifty-fifty chance it'll include the line, "Don't judge." Why the hell not? Why do people worry so much what strangers, people they do not know and will never meet, think of them?

"So when are you going to come visit me in the A2?" Not just sweet. Schweet.

I have never read a Hellboy comic; so, why am I so excited about this Spring's Hellboy movie? Because there are no better villains than Nazis. Every hero worth his salt fights Nazis. Indiana Jones. The Blues Brothers. And it does appear that Hellboy (played by the always great Ron Perlman), does indeed fight Nazis. Neato mosquito.
I'm IMing with Sardine right now. Sweet.

After dinner, I saw an extended interview with Wesley Clark, one of the nine midgets... er, candidates for the Democratic presidential nomination. Ah, geez. I disagree with many of President Bush's policies, but I now believe it is impreative that he be reelected. Some of the Democrats, my word, they have truly dangerous ideas.

I watched seven episodes of DS9 today. Days off, without the parents home, rule.

Monday, December 8, 2003

I'm not much of a punk. I don't own any steel-toed boots, I've never had a mohawk, and I am a fan of neither the Sex Pistols nor The Clash. In my favor, I do like The Ramones, I've dyed my hair many times, and I have little respect for most people and the way they live their lives. Either way, I am enough of a punk to know this: I loathe mods. Conformist bastards. I don't understand mods; they whine about how most people are complete ciphers and just accept the pop culture garbage that is shovelled at them, but yet they all bend over backwards to look just like each other, i.e. look like they walked straight off the set of Quadrophenia. Fucking mods. Here's an idea for you toolboxes to chew over while you're cruising on your Vespas: think for yourself!

I wonder who is the real ruler of China? Yes, Jiang Zemin has been replaced as president by Hu Jintao, but who really wields the power? After all, bear in mind that at the time of his death, Deng Xiaoping's only official title was honorary chairman of the China Bridge Association (bridge as in the card game).

We should all always be careful what we wish for. For example, Scotland and Wales have agitated for decades to have greater autonomy within the United Kingdom. To this end, the four "countries" that comprise the UK - England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland - compete as separate teams in many international sporting events, though I believe the UK still fields one unified Olympic team. The danger in this is that by fostering Scottish and Welsh national pride, these moves have also fostered English national pride, possibly even English nationalism. Do you really want to encourage the English to think of themselves as English rather than British? The English are among the most aggressive, ruthless, and successful conquerers in human history. They saw no contradiction in forcibly subjugating Scotland, Wales, Ireland, India, North America, and, eventually, 1/3 of the human race, while at the same time giving birth to parliamentary democracy and laying the foundation for the great American republic. Do not think me hateful; I am an Anglophile. I love both Britain and specifically England. My blood comes from England. But today, to celebrate England's victory in the world cup of rugby, Trafalger Square was filled with people waving flags bearing not the Union Jack, but the red and white St. George's Cross. I wonder if this was the desired result of the Scottish nationalists in Edinburgh when they launched their long campaign for greater autonomy from London.

About the Great War, my late great-grandmother Maude Gray (born in England, 1897) is said to have remarked, "Such a terrible waste of all those handsome young men."

Sunday, December 7, 2003

"The only road to a satisfactory conclusion is the sudden and massive application of unconscionable violence."
has been changed to
"The only appropriate response is the sudden and massive application of unspeakable violence."

Skeeter will hate this whole post
I do not read the Star Trek novels. If it is not on either the small screen or the silver screen, it is not canon. One exception, though, it that I've always wanted to read The Lives of Dax. Dax is an interesting little slug.
Lela Dax
Tobin Dax
Emony Dax
Audrid Dax
Torias Dax
Joran Dax
Curzon Dax
Jadzia Dax
Ezri Dax

The Borg are great. The Klingons and the Romulans are both fantastic villains, as proven by their long staying power. But the greatest Star Trek adversary of them all is, without question, the anti-Federation itself, the Dominion.

On a related note, sweet fancy Moses, the seventh season of DS9 is even more amazing than I remembered. Wow.
I don't know why, but I absolutely cannot stand silence. I fear it. I loathe it. I do everything in my power to kill it. I like silences between people, but I need something going on in the background.
"I think I had a black wallet
In my back pocket
With a bus ticket
And a picture of my baby inside
And if I make it home alive
I've got to get my shit together
'Cause I can't live like this forever
You know I've gone too far
And I don't want to fail
I've got a new computer
And a bright future in sales."
--Fountains of Wayne, "Bright Future in Sales" from Welcome Interstate Manager

Saturday, December 6, 2003

The funny thing about Christianity is that, in a social setting, humans would get along much better with demons than with angels. Demons at least know what it's like to make a mistake; angels don't even know how to think for themselves.
I don't have to work again until Tuesday morning. I am so incredibly happy right now.

On my break today, I bought a new wallet. I did this not because I don't love my velcro Darth Maul wallet, but in defense of the aforementioned velcro Darth Maul wallet. I love my Darth Maul wallet; I bought it around 12:45 am on May 1, 1999 at the flagship F.A.O. Schwarz store in Manhatten. This was the first day Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace merchandise was available and I waited in line outside the store with my fellow zealots for the doors to open at midnight. It was an amazing experience. I cherish the Darth Maul wallet both as a memento of that glorious night, and a pretty darned swanky wallet. I will love it forever. It is because I want to be able to love it forever that I have decided to retire it from active service. The color has faded from Darth Maul and his signature double-bladed lightsaber and there are several small tears in the interior vinyl. I want this treasure to lat a lifetime; thus, it has to be taken out of my back pocket. The new wallet is analogous to Big Red, my backpack; no one is expected Big Red to surpass the Green Army Bag, nor has he, but by Jove, Big Red gets the job done. And yes, the new wallet also has a chain; so, I am still refusing to act my age.
I think I am going to adore the Hellboy movie.

"When the come for me, I'll be sitting at my desk,
With a gun in my hand, wearing a bulletproof vest,
Singing my my my,
How the time must fly,
When you know you're gonnna die,
By the end of the night."
--Catch 22, "Keasbey Nights" from Keasbey Nights

I will brook many insults, but I will not be told to not be myself.
The Island
Yesterday, I had a random encounter with Dan the Man, my amigo since 1981. We're both post-undergrad losers living in our parents' houses and we live less than a block apart, but it was the first time I'd seen him since before I moved back home. I just checked my U of M email account and replied to a two month old email from Neutral Man, with whom I've lost touch. I never got around to seeing Daddy Dylweed, his lovely wife, and bouncing baby boy before they moved to Farmington. (I mean, they are in Farmington, not on the far side of the Moon, but it's emblematic.) I had multiple phone conversations with Sardine while she was in NYC over the Summer, but not really since she's been back, even though we're only an hour apart. No man is an island, but I've always made of point of saying I make a pretty good isolated peninsula. It seems like since I left Ann Arbor I've made every effort to see that all my bridges have been out of service. Why? I've got to believe part of it is embarrassment. I have an odd relationship with embarrassment. I can scream like a madman and dance like a fool in the middle of a crowded park, but I am terrified of letting anyone know how horribly I've screwed up my life. I took five years to graduate from Michigan, out of laziness, but also because I was terrified at the prospect of graduation and so put it off any way I could. Since then, I've only half-heartedly tried to get a real life started. Actually, I've only been doing that since September; May 2002-August 2003 was a fifteen month fucking party. I have been, I still am so blindly, stupidly prideful.

Those whom gods would destroy, they first make proud. I've done a fine enough job of that myself, thanks.

And for fuck's sake, the first person to ask me how I'm doing or if I'm okay gets a brick to the face. I love you guys, but when I post this sort of thing I am not crying for help or comfort; my deepest love goes to the few of you who instinctively understand this.

Friday, December 5, 2003

What the hell is a civil union?
Explain this to me: why is it kosher for two people who just met twenty minutes ago to get married in Las Vegas, as long as they are of opposite genders, while two men who have been devoted to each other for forty years cannot enjoy anything approaching the same legal status? This makes no sense to me whatsoever. My mom tries to be nice to everyone. She thinks homosexuals should have all the same rights and privilidges of straight folk. This includes marriage, as long as you don't call it marriage. Byeh? Her only objection is the word. Two women should be able to enter a legal union, which would be the exact same as marriage, just not called marriage. What? I do not agree with people who oppose gay marriage, but at least I understand their position. I do not understand my mom's need to play games with semantics. I think the illogic of it goes something like this:

{1} A rose by any other name would smell as sweet. Maybe the words aren't important. Marriage, civil union, the name doesn't matter as long as homosexual couples enjoy the same legal standing as hetero couples. We have a long cultural heritage of the word marriage implying a bonding between husband and wife, usually resulting in children. As long as people have the rights, why can't we keep our word the same as it has always been?

{2} Separate but equal. Fan of the sound of my own voice that I am, I tend to think that words are important. If a civil union carries all the same rights as a marriage, why not call it a marriage? By giving it a different name, a name that does not have a long cultural heritage, we are saying that civil unions aren't marriage, which inevitably leads to civil unions being considered inferior to marriage. Which then implies homosexuals are inferior, which is both un-American and un-Christian.

I admire those who are campaigning for civil unions around this country. They are doing so against the strong oppostion of many people, yet by campaigning for civil unions instad of marriage, they are trying to show sensitivity to their opposition. In the same position, I would not feel as generous. Of course, I also respect those who have religious objections to homosexuality and thus gay marriage. Many of these people are good people, people of good conscience and strong conviction. I disagree with them, but I admire anyone who stands up for what they believe to be right.

But then there are the bigots. Take my father, for example. He opposes homosexuality and thus gay marriage because it does not result in procreation. He calls it a dead end for the species. If that is his objection to gay marriage, would he not also have to object to childless heterosexual marriage? For example, his friends Gary and Linda, who have no children. Or Coach Oldham and his wife, who never had children. When I posed this question to him, he did not answer me, but simply walked away. Fortunately, the Nazis who spew this sort of hate speech are generally not included in the mainstream debate.

But, let us not allow this debate to be sidetracked by my personal enmity for meine vater. As a culture, we have made amazing strides in the last fifty years. We still have racial problems, but we no longer accept race as a legitimate reason for discrimination. We still have gender issues, but gender is becoming less and less acceptable as a reason for discrimination. We are more tolerant of a greater diversity of religions than ever before. We are so very close to be the enlightened society we have always dreamed we could be. We cannot allow our fear to stop us now.

...and of course, while I'm trying to do this the fucking cat keeps whining for attention. Motherfucker, I cannot pet you if you don't come over here.

Thursday, December 4, 2003

Wicked Funny
"Anyone who laughs is a Communist."
--Fry, listening to President Nixon's Head's Freedom Day speech

"Sock it to him!"
--President Nixon's Head, upon learning the Supreme Court will hear his case against Zoidberg
Shit, I just forgot what I was going to say. Hmmmm.

You know what this country needs? More Jason Lee movies. Now, dammit!

Wednesday, December 3, 2003

Never Girl sez I'm not doing enough to help Skeeter through her panic-induced difficulties. How exactly would she know? I provide my own peculiar brand of support for my dear, black-hearted friend.
I have only seen the glorious Ms. Deschanel in three films, in order of quality: Elf, Big Trouble, and The New Guy. In how many films have you seen Zooey?

In talking with the Mountain, I referred to the Conchshell as "the missus." This is clearly a joke. Yet, he's reacting to it as if he's a Spanish landowner and I've insulted his daughter's honor. However, my brother has always been hypersensitive; so, this is evidence he's still the David I've always known and loved. Cool beans.

Anywho, the new album by The Hippos, titled The Hippos, is awesome! (I have access to it because the Mountain left it here during his brief Thanksgiving pop-in.)

I wish I worked at Kramerica, Inc.

Fun with Nations!
America - United States of America
Britain - United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
Ireland - Republic of Ireland
Mexico - United Mexican States
Canada - Dominion of Canada
Spain - Kingdom of Spain
Luxembourg - Grand Duchy of Luxembourg
Russia - Russian Federation
France - French Republic
Germany - Federal Republic of Germany
China - People's Republic of China
Taiwan - Republic of China
South Korea - Republic of Korea
North Korea - Democratic People's Republic of Korea
Japan actually, there is no formal name for Japan; it is no longer the Empire of Japan, but after the Second World War it was simply never renamed
Jordan - Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan
Saudi Arabia - Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
Iran - Islamic Republic of Iran
Australia - Commonwealth of Australia

Tuesday, December 2, 2003

"If anybody needs me, I'll be in the Angry Dome."

The Angry Dome? If anybody needs one of those, it is your humble narrator.

Mr. Pot Meets Mr. Kettle
K. Steeze is working on teleplays for episodes of the Space Pirates Project. I told him that I feel it is premature to be working on them and that my interest lies in plotting, rather than scripting, episodes and the general story arc of the first season. He has taken great offense to this and has quit the project. He said, "Why the fuck would I want to continue working on something when the leader won't even encourage me to help?" Huh.

I am absolutely anal about backstory. It could be said that I work best backwards, if I pick a point in time and then work to figure out how and why we got there. To do this, especially in a science fiction context, I need to know about the world in which the characters live. For the SPP, we had to invent that universe. From starships to political structures to what kind of pants these futuristic hypermen wear. While I was doing this, Steeze opined that I was wasting time, time better spent on writing stories. Yet, even though he told me I was wasting both our time, I continued in what I felt was the right direction. So, the moral of the story is that he can say he doesn't care about the work I'm doing, and that's fine, but if I say the same about his work, I'm a jerk. It must be nice to live in a world where you are free to be as hypocritical as you wish and still believe yourself blameless.

Must be really nice.

The Dark Bastard
The Professor sez, "Your blog has turned rather pessimistic lately." Do not worry, dear reader, I am fine. But, whereas through September and October I was home all day, making phone calls and sending out many resumes, going out and about to pick up and drop off applications maybe twice a week, now I have to wake up arse early, be on my feet all day, and come home to Fox News blaring loudly from the TV in the family room... even though my father is upstairs. I am not as gregarious because my time is more precious and my mood easier to sour. Perhaps I have been more pessimistic lately, but it is primarily because I am never happier than when I am doing nothing, and now I am rather busy.

Discography: Elvis Costello and the Attractions, This Year's Model
78 rpm
In one commercial break this evening, I saw the Cat in the Hat hawking SC Johnson cleaning products (Pledge, Swiffer sheets) and endorsing Mastercard credit services. The Cat in the Hat movie is one thing, but this manner of crass commercialism.... Anyway, that rapid thumping sound you hear, that is Theodore Seuss Geisel, "Dr. Seuss," spinning in his grave. (If he was cremated, just consider it metaphorical spinning.) I remain unperturbed, however, secure in the knowledge that his heirs will find themselves spending all of eternity in the innermost ring of Hell, the one reserved for betrayers.

Erin Go Bragh
My name is Michael Patrick Wilson. I am a confirmed, if not particularly reverent, Roman Catholic. Yet, I am astounded and outraged that Gerry Adams and Sinn Fein are allowed to participate in the Northern Ireland government. They are terrorists! They blow up shopping malls in the center of London! Gah! That said, as far as conscienceless terrorist organizations go, the IRA has one hell of a good name. Irish Republican Army, now that's classy.
I like to put things side by side and see how they change over time.
Alexander Rozhenko
Alexander, son of Worf

First Vulcan in Starfleet: Spock, son of Sarek
First Klingon in Starfleet: Worf, son of Mogh
First Ferengi in Starfleet: Nog, son of Rom
(If you have an actual last name, you should probably give up on being the first member of your species in Starfleet.)

Monday, December 1, 2003

Thank Bog for The Watergirl's album Can't Stop the Love Sled. After work today, it was exactly what I needed.

Grandma Wilson died in July. She's already been cremated. We're going down to Austin immediately after Christmas for a wake/remembrance of sorts. Who the fuck honors the dead almost six months after the death? The Wilsons. Jesus H. Christ in a motherfucking chicken basket, these are some seriously fucked up people. My dad actually seems to be looking forward to seeing his siblings; this only seems odd since he normally talks to his sister maybe twice a year, and his two borthers maybe once every two or three years. Needless to say, I shall be cliquing up with Evil Lisa and the Mountain. The other day, Dad said that his views are almost identical to my Uncle Fred's (uncle by marriage). He said this as if it was supposed to impress me. "Oh, well, if Uncle Fred's a Nazi, too, I must have been wrong about you guys all along, Dad. Say, where can I get me a pair of those stylish jackboots?"

I am concerned that DC Comics is going to hell in a handbasket. But, as I have philosophical objections to worrying, there's nothing for it but to wait and see.

The other day, I offended Steeze by saying that I do not think any of us are yet skilled enough writers to produce scripts of high quality for episodes of the Space Pirates Project. He took this as a sign that he should just give up. If you do not want to hear my opinion, let me suggest that perhaps you should not ask.

My beloved Lions are 4-8. Wow. Matt Millen should still be sacked (9-35 over the last 2 3/4 seasons; only compared to 2-14 and 3-13 does 4-8 look appealing), but my hat's off to Steve Mariucci. The man is a godsend. For the first time since 2000, there is legitimate hope, not just the hope that there is hope.

If there are spelling and/or grammatical errors, it is only because I did not feel like proofreading. Be strong. You'll survive.