Log in

The Illudium Q-36 Explosive Space Modulator!
April 2014
Sun, Nov. 30th, 2003 02:03 am

Please be warned, this post contains excessive brattiness and ungratefulness. Viewer discretion is advised.

---Collapse )

Current Mood: angry angry


Fri, Nov. 28th, 2003 12:01 am

March 14, 1969

Who has never killed an hour? Not casually or without thought, but carefully: a premeditated murder of minutes. The violence comes from a combination of giving up, not caring, and a resignation that getting past it is all you can hope to accomplish. So you kill the hour. You do not work, you do not read, you do not daydream. If you sleep it is not because you need to sleep. And when at last it is over, there is no evidence: no weapon, no blood, and no body. The only clue might be the shadows beneath your eyes or a terribly thin line near the corner of you mouth indicating something has been suffered, that in the privacy of your life you have lost something and the loss is too empty to share.

- Zampanò, House Of Leaves

Substitute "month" for hour and you've pretty much summed it up, guy. I wanted the stupid T-shirt or whatever they give you for writing a book in a month. I won't get the shirt. Maybe I'll still get the book, someday.

Assuming I'm someone completely different by then, someone who doesn't trip and fall flat in the center of the room when life puts the tiniest wrinkle in the rug. If I was Michael Richards, I'm sure my fall would be comical. But I'm not, and it's not.

Fuck, I'm so tired, and I'm so sad. And it isn't because Dad's here in a few hours. Or because Trey Gunn left King Crimson. Although these facts certainly don't help matters.

Dammit, it's no excuse to just sit around moping all the time when I've got a fucking story that needs to get OUT OF MY HEAD. Natalie Goldberg was right, and I knew she was right before I even read her; this is my other life, my real life that isn't spent paying bills, it's spent creating art. So if it's really my real life, why is that life in a hospital bed, on life support? Why in the fuck am I letting it stay there when it can get up and walk?

But November is so hard, so very hard. To do that or do anything. Why did it have to be November? Don't they know I can't do anything in November? It takes everything I have just to get the hell out of bed. Some days I don't even do that. Although everyone should be pleased to know that those are not weekdays any more. Things have really changed at work; there's no time for that any more.

Only, you see, work isn't my real life, y'unnerstan. Ha. Shit.

Mom said a few years back that she could no longer handle art films when she got home from work because she was too tired for them. I said, "That's an old way of thinking. I'm not like that. I'm not gonna be like that." I guess the worst you could say is that by letting this month slip past so easily, I'm becoming old. Oh, I've worked, no question. Will do it again, most likely.

But the point is I missed my goal and part of that goal was more than just saying "I wrote a book in a month" part of what that MEANS to me is that I'm not gonna be one of those sad pointless souls who is ALWAYS "working on a novel" and have to mention this to people when asked because they need to feel important about themselves because they're NOT actually "working on a novel" because they're letting their lives slip away without anything to say and as Billy Joel once pointed out, Paul is a real estate novelist who never had time for a wife, and where can you find him now? In some useless bar.

It helps that I'm not an alcoholic. I guess. Although that's like bragging that you didn't strangle your children. You're not supposed to, you stupid piece of shit.

And what I was supposed to do was spend this month writing this story. And I didn't, or couldn't. No, didn't. I failed.

Congratulations, dark forces. You win this round.

When am I going to amount to something?

Current Mood: depressed depressed
Current Music: The Dirtbombs - "Stop"


Wed, Nov. 5th, 2003 12:12 am

Context, people. It's all about context. What is context? Let me give you an example. Here's the following conversation:

A: Still as sharp as ever! I'm telling you! You sounded great up there!
B: (taken aback) Well, thanks! Thank you.
A: Yeah! You want "fancy things", I got a "fancy thing" for ya. Here ya go. (pulls out 1970: The Complete Funhouse Sessions and lays it on the table) This'll pay the bills, huh? Or...this paid the bills. (they all dig out their pens)
C: (laughs)
A: I should say that I should have been paying bills, but I paid for this instead. Far better.
C: (laughs)
A: So, anyway, any plans to head out on the road after this?
C: Well, actually, that's kinda what we're doing now. After this, we're making a stop in Long Beach. So, long way to go.
A: Far more agreeable weather, though.
C: Nnyeah.
A: Let me ask you this; why Boston? For today? For the release of this new album? Why not home?
C: Well, we were in New York doing some things and thought we'd stop by.
(awkward pause)
A: Okay. Well, listen, thank you very much for the music, I think you're just terrific. (shakes C's hand)
C: Thank you.
A: Scott, thank you for the music (A pats D's arm. D just smiles and nods). Ron, thanks again for the music! Okay! Bye!

There you go. Just a dumb little conversation among people, with some of them far more overzealous than others for strange reasons, right?

Okay. Now read this:

A = G Money Jones III. Duh.
B = Ron Asheton, original Stooges guitarist and recently named #29 on Rolling Stone's list of The 100 Greatest Guitarists Of All Time.
D = Scott Asheton, Ron's brother. Original Stooges drummer.

Now things begin to make a bit more sense, don't they? That's context. The Stooges, and the Grandfather Of Punk with them, not only played in front of me, but signed my Stooges box set. And I shook Iggy's hand. That's elation.

Ohhhhhyeah. This beats just about the crappiest day anyone can dream up.

Current Mood: ecstatic ecstatic
Current Music: Iggy Pop and Sum 41 - "Little Know It All"


Wed, Oct. 29th, 2003 02:00 am

Yes. It's happened, folks. Your eyes do not deceive you.


Now all that remains is everything. Three days left of farting around, and then... Please send me them vibes.

Current Mood: anxious anxious
Current Music: Eric B. & Rakim - "Paid In Full (Derek B's Urban Respray)"


Tue, Oct. 28th, 2003 01:25 am

Awww. Thanks, guys. Even though not everything was what I was hoping for (I really hope you finished your biology exam before you gave me your, em, "treat", tallgirl; regarding lizzard's contribution: thanks, mommmm), everybody gave me something. Which was swell of yaz. Now everyone come over and help me finish all this candy!

"Watermelon candy never tastes anything remotely like watermelon."
- Jim Marcus from Die Warzau

My LiveJournal Trick-or-Treat Haul
gmoneyjonesIII goes trick-or-treating, dressed up as one of those little pins they put in new shirts.
echoboom tricks you! You get a rotten egg.
lizzard tricks you! You get a toothbrush.
moriana90 tricks you! You get an empty wrapper.
nbinoculars tricks you! You get an empty wrapper.
nuclearjew gives you 1 red watermelon-flavoured gummy fruits.
oceanic gives you 14 light green strawberry-flavoured gummy fruits.
princessinabox gives you 8 green grape-flavoured pieces of chewing gum.
sonic_symphonic gives you 16 brown cherry-flavoured hard candies.
spicyflower gives you 14 yellow tropical-flavoured jelly beans.
tallgirl tricks you! You get a dead frog.
gmoneyjonesIII ends up with 53 pieces of candy, a rotten egg, a toothbrush, an empty wrapper, an empty wrapper, and a dead frog.
Go trick-or-treating! Username:
Another fun meme brought to you by rfreebern.

Current Mood: jubilant jubilant
Current Music: Lionel Richie - "Penny Lover (Alternate Version)"


Mon, Oct. 27th, 2003 12:28 am

Props to oceanic for this dilly dally device. But is this survey just there to make me feel bad for being another western-centric Ayyymerican? It's bad enough that I can't click on most of the countries listed for any category; I don't even know what some of those countries are. "Sao Tome and Principe", for example. Island chains tend to blend together for me anyway, but there are so many of these that are considered nations and I don't know whether they're in the Carribean, the South Pacific, or whether they're even islands at all but just sound like 'em. "St. Pierre and Miquelon". "The Heard and McDonald Islands". "The Wallis and Futuna Islands". The ever-elusive "Federated States Of Micronesia." Then there's stuff that I've never even heard of at all. "Kiribati"? "Lesotho"? "Myanmar"? "Tokelau"? And my favorite, "Dronning Maud Land"? Are you sure these are places? Or just what's left in the Scrabble tray at the end of the game?

Anyway, interesting that the internet hasn't brought me closer to any of these countries and their denizens. I like that they're all "offline" relationships, in one way or another (a couple of them were nothing more than long conversations at some point in my life, but I think they count). Those are the most memorable and meaningful ones. Credit the world of theatre, church camps, and an insatiable desire for music--in order--as the main reasons for all these folks I've met in my life. Not bad. I want more.

My Relation To Countries
Visited Known People From
Offline Online
United Kingdom
United States
Czech Republic
Dominican Republic
New Zealand
Puerto Rico
Russian Federation
South Korea
Trinidad and Tobago
United Kingdom
United States
United Kingdom
United States

Number of Countries I Visited:
[Error: Irreparable invalid markup ('<td [...] ">') in entry. Owner must fix manually. Raw contents below.]

Props to <lj user=oceanic> for this dilly dally device. But is this survey just there to make me feel bad for being another western-centric Ayyymerican? It's bad enough that I can't click on most of the countries listed for any category; I don't even know what some of those countries <u>are</u>. "Sao Tome and Principe", for example. Island chains tend to blend together for me anyway, but there are so many of these that are considered nations and I don't know whether they're in the Carribean, the South Pacific, or whether they're even islands at all but just sound like 'em. "St. Pierre and Miquelon". "The Heard and McDonald Islands". "The Wallis and Futuna Islands". The ever-elusive "Federated States Of Micronesia." Then there's stuff that I've never even heard of at all. "Kiribati"? "Lesotho"? "Myanmar"? "Tokelau"? And my favorite, "Dronning Maud Land"? Are you sure these are places? Or just what's left in the Scrabble tray at the end of the game?

Anyway, interesting that the internet <u>hasn't</u> brought me closer to any of these countries and their denizens. I like that they're all "offline" relationships, in one way or another (a couple of them were nothing more than long conversations at some point in my life, but I think they count). Those are the most memorable and meaningful ones. Credit the world of theatre, church camps, and an insatiable desire for music--in order--as the main reasons for all these folks I've met in my life. Not bad. I want more.

<table align="center" summary="Countries" style="background-color: #DDDDDD; width: 400px">
<td colspan="3" style="text-align: center; background-color: #EEEEEE; color: #000000"><b>My Relation To Countries</b></td>
<td rowspan="2" style="text-align: center; background-color: #EEEEEE; color: #000000"><b>Visited</b></td>
<td colspan="2" style="text-align: center; background-color: #EEEEEE; color: #000000"><b>Known People From</b></td>
<td style="text-align: center; background-color: #EEEEEE; color: #000000"><b>Offline</b></td>
<td style="text-align: center; background-color: #EEEEEE; color: #000000"><b>Online</b></td>
<td style="vertical-align: top; background-color: #EEEEEE; color: #000000">Canada<br />France<br />Ireland<br />United Kingdom<br />United States<br /></td>
<td style="vertical-align: top; background-color: #EEEEEE; color: #000000">Australia<br />Benin<br />Brazil<br />Canada<br />China<br />Colombia<br />Czech Republic<br />Dominican Republic<br />Egypt<br />France<br />Germany<br />India<br />Iran<br />Ireland<br />Italy<br />Japan<br />Mexico<br />New Zealand<br />Norway<br />Pakistan<br />Puerto Rico<br />Russian Federation<br />South Korea<br />Spain<br />Sweden<br />Switzerland<br />Trinidad and Tobago<br />United Kingdom<br />United States<br />Vietnam<br /></td>
<td style="vertical-align: top; background-color: #EEEEEE; color: #000000">Canada<br />France<br />Germany<br />India<br />Sweden<br />Switzerland<br />United Kingdom<br />United States<br /></td>
<table style="background-color: #DDDDDD; width: 400px" summary="Statistics" align="center">
<td colspan="3" style="text-align: center; background-color: #EEEEEE; color: #000000"><b>Statistics</b></td>
<td colspan="2" style="background-color: #EEEEEE; color: #000000"><b>Number of Countries I Visited: </b></td>
<td style="background-color: #EEEEEE; color: #000000; text-align: center; width: 40px""> 5</td>
<td rowspan="2" style="background-color: #EEEEEE; color: #000000"><b>Number of Countries I Talked To People From</b></td>
<td style="background-color: #EEEEEE; color: #000000"><b>Offline: </b></td>
<td style="background-color: #EEEEEE; color: #000000; text-align: center; width: 40px"> 30</td>
<td style="background-color: #EEEEEE; color: #000000"><b>Online: </b></td>
<td style="background-color: #EEEEEE; color: #000000; text-align: center; width: 40px"> 8</td>
<td style="text-align: center; background-color: #EEEEEE; color: #000000" colspan="3"><a style="background-color: #EEEEEE; color: #000000" href="http://khab.webservicez.nl/countries.php">Which Countries Are You Related To?</a></td>
<td style="text-align: center; background-color: #EEEEEE; color: #000000" colspan="3">Brought to you by: <span style='white-space:nowrap;'><a href='http://www.livejournal.com/userinfo.bml?user=khalidz0r'><img src='http://stat.livejournal.com/img/userinfo.gif' alt='userinfo' width='17' height='17' style='vertical-align:bottom;border:0;' /></a><a style="background-color: #EEEEEE; color: #000000" href='http://www.livejournal.com/users/khalidz0r/'><b>khalidz0r</b></a></span></td>

Current Mood: impressed impressed
Current Music: Jeff Buckley - "Night Flight (Live at Sin-é)"


Wed, Oct. 22nd, 2003 02:27 am

And those two things aren't "Dave" and "Matthews". Nothing could be further from my musical mind, actually (okay, tiny aside here before we get to our nightly broadcast); the Underworld soundtrack, of all things, is my alarm clock this week. I try to have a different album every day as my wake-up on ye olde stereo, although I'll often do artist-specific weeks based on my mood at the start of the week. The Cult, Soundgarden, Ministry (tends to be loud folks; having a week of Brian Eno is going to be a guaranteed week of oversleeping)--all have spent a week in the player with good results. Last week was all of Deep Purple's works from In Rock to Made In Japan (what a delicious treat for a Friday morning--that worked out damn good). But this week, just one album. One gloomy, seething, barking album of cackling darkness. Why? Why do I keep leaving it in there night after night? Because I'm too lazy and depressed to change it? Well...yes.

But something there keeps getting me up each morning, and it isn't just that horrid horrid horrid vomit-spew metal that Dillinger Escape Plan brought to the party that just makes me shudder at the state of how ugly Asshole Rock has really become since the Bizkiteers came mincing down the pike. (I must say, however, that "Baby's First Coffin" is one GREAT song title. Funny and terrifying at the same time; you laugh at the wordplay, you cover your mouth at the actual idea. That title always reminds me of that unforgettable moment in Stephen King's 'Salem's Lot where Ben and, um, other dude look in that crawlspace underneath that house trailer only to find not only the napping white trash couple but also their newborn infant concealed until nighttime allows them all to roam and drink blood again. A happy little family. Utterly chilling. As is the rest of the book.) Yes, that track gets me up, long enough to skip past it.

But, speaking against Asshole Rock then, why the hell do I keep coming back to this Trust Company track? This maelstrom of ivory keys and echo-chambered, dusty pleas keeps sweeping me along with its current. A stream of dark violet and midnight blue, spewing me out into a warm bay under a full moon, where the temperature of the water is the same as my tears that I can't help but sigh out of my eyes now that I'm adrift and alone. As Extreme's "More Than Words" was to the hair metal bands, and as Aaron Lewis and Fred Durst's "Outside" was to the first wave of Asshole Rockers, so is this song to the current crop of pierced, inked, screamers desperately trying to be Linkin Park. Namely: an instrumentally sober and subdued ballad (acoustic guitars for those other two songs, piano for this) that lacks none of the band's overflowing emotional outbursts just because it is, indeed, "Quiet". I've heard the album mix, and two or three others from this band now. I want to say that they have a stronger gift for tear-choked melody than their peers. That they have a more unique sculpting of singing-not-screaming dynamics in front of that scrolling vertical background of sandblasting, opaque guitar distortion. I'm 97% sure that I'm deluding myself completely and they're just another face in the crowd. A face panting and screaming like all the others, blending in completely until the whole field is just one histrionic forest of conformity.

No, the fact is, I'm vulnerable right now to this kind of thing. It was the same last year, this time, with Peter Gabriel's Up. Something in the first six songs on that album leapt out of the ones and zeroes on the compact disc, took a photograph of my soul, and showed it to me. It ain't every day you get that level of rapport with someone else's art. The nice part is that I still adored the album during the summer, when everything seemed easier and more risible. I still love it now. But I don't cling to it also, like I did then. Like I probably could again if I dared to put it on right now, at this time of year.

I'm gettin' clingy with this Trust Company remix. And it's driving me batshit because, while I was impressed by it the very first time I listened to the album (which was, what, a month ago? This thing's been out a month now?), I knew it certainly wasn't the greatest piece of art on this freakin' soundtrack. That would probably be David Bowie and Maynard Keenan matching disclosable wits on "Bring Me The Disco King" (M.J.K. ruminating and quietly menacing, a bodyguard flexing his muscles and glaring at the crowd like some paranoid front-of-house security worker for Satan's touring entourage, while Bowie is just shaking his head and half-reminiscing, half-yawning at all the decadence, a thousand-year old demon bored by his own evilness, barely glancing at the audience through his cigarette smoke, muttering about "rivers of perfumed limbs" with the ennui of a storyteller chained to his own autobiography for eternity; Sisyphus as a raconteur. "Life wasn't worth the balance," he suspires with endless weariness, "or the crumpled paper it was written on." What a delightfully theatrical, FUN song. Perfect for the both of them). Or perhaps Skinny Puppy's window-shattering return to recording, "Optimissed", the sound of black shards of vocal obsidian stuttering through the air, melting into liquid and freezing again at a moment's notice amidst a thunderstorm of electronic beats, incomprehensible as always (as EVERY Puppy song is) but writhing with every drop of strength and power their sound has always possessed. The most shamelessly delightful pleasure on this soundtrack. And, not coincidentally, the most danceable.

And "Hover" is a risky song, definitely; you have to have some special quality to abandon the volume and still aim for "I am full of anguish" and actually make it work. "Outside" did. "More Than Words", in its own way, kinda did (the song was a celebration of less-conventional levels of intimacy in a relationship rather than a blubbering argument that no relationships are even possible; the latent lyrical optimism is yet another reason why I like the rockers of fifteen years ago more than the rockers of today). On the Underworld soundtrack, "Hover" still isn't the riskiest song, though. Which has to be Johnette Napolitano's "Suicide Note". HOLY FUCK, GIRL!!! I knew she was into darkness, but this makes every note of Concrete Blonde's catalogue sound like the fucking Carpenters. These severed-fingered minor chords on the extreme left end of the piano, these wisps of eroding bass drum pulsebeats as percussion, this amber film of evil sticking to every surface, a caul of despair that refuses to burst, this voice of croaking cracked desolation ringing from under coal-lined eyes that refuse to blink do they stare in disgust or in confusion or in pity or just in smug demonic glee as the life before them shifts on the floor ebbing away and I swear I absolutely see a merciless smile lift those cruel red lips as she spits out "i wanted to believe as i/watched your world crumble in your hands. i wanted to believe as you/raised your glass to your last stand. and i wanted to believe you would win/the war in your head/that I did not/under/stand.". Recording this inevitable descent, reveling in it with sadistic schadenfreude, and refusing to lift a finger to help. This is the song you hear when you turn a corner in Hell and find yourself facing a dead end alleyway. This is what the end of that alley sounds like.

Yeah, "Hover" is pretty small potatoes compared to some of this shit. And I do mean shit--wasted on a soundtrack for an action movie that nobody's gonna remember in a year's time despite a decent premise and attractive principals. Or is that shit? Is it, instead, a lucky thing that we got all these undead moaning growls compiled onto one disc, one time, one place, as opposed to having to buy it all on, like, fifteen separate albums? Is it, to further confound reality, the soundtrack of the year? Because most of the songs are unified in mood, theme, and tone, and who gives a shit about even seeing the movie in order to grasp some kind of cohesion to what's on display? Or is my entire perception of this clouded by the fact that this is making a great primer to my novel, which deals with certain of these emotions (unquestionably) and certain of these themes (obliquely)? Or is my entire perception of this clouded by the fact that, while work sure is better (how could it get worse?) and most things are hunky-dory on the superficial life front (more than I give credit for), I still find myself more receptive to darkness at this time of the year, and "Hover" just seems to work on me better right now than it would otherwise? Warm and obvious orchestral strings collide with the chilly glass of the piano, and it's that same mood that DJ Shadow's "Midnight In A Perfect World" strikes with me. An outdoor hot tub on a 20 degree full moon lit winter's night. Stay in the tub, stay warm, and you can admire the icy calm of the world around you. Sometimes, when those breathy vocal harmonies couple and rise ("shutting me out again/are you tryiiiiiiiing") you feel so safe and cushioned amidst the fragility that you want to sink down in the tub until just your eyes are floating, hovering, above the surface of the steamy bubble bath and your ears are submerged, listening to the amplified clunnk, thunnk of the hot tub's inner echoing ecosystem, the porcelain paradise of heat and comfort, and you look up past the wafts of steam floating past into that pallid outer space night and it just seems...gorgeous.

you take me dowwwwn
further inside of meeee.
i'm fay-ding out,
i can bare-ly seeeeee.

Mmm. Darkness feels awfully good sometimes.

~ ~ ~

Sheee-yit. Not only did I never get around to my two things, but this isn't even the review I wanted to write about the Underworld soundtrack! This isn't even a review! I had bigger points to make, about soundtracks and aging and marketing vs. creativity and...damn. Wait for the end-of-year roundup, I guess. As for my postponed nightly broadcast, uhm, remember two words: Jesus and Atkins diet. And remind me tomorrow. I'm finishing this Lester Bangs collection and going to bed.

Current Mood: melancholy quiet, silent, small
Current Music: Trust Company - "Hover (Quiet Mix)"


Fri, Oct. 17th, 2003 01:07 am

Baseball ain't the only letdown right now, kids. Let me say this once: Nobody wants this World Series. Thank you.

I was a bigger letdown today. Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse...it did. I'm not gonna elaborate right now. The pleasing voice of imaginary_girl called a few ticks ago and I told most of the details to her. It helped a little. She's good like that.

Lest I forget, lest I do worse tomorrow, lest I even find myself without a job, I just want to indulge some lyric-quoting from earlier this year. In the twilight of my optimism--the twilight of summer?--this is what that twilight has sounded like, and this is what I keep trying to remember whenever events in my life start taking a turn like this.

Tonight I'm so sky high
I can only see one star in the sky
Want to get closer, put your name on it
Lift me up so I can reach it

If I do just one thing with my life
I'll get the truth for you tonight
'Cause there's more to me than my twisted side
I'll get the truth for you tonight

There are still things that I want to do
There are still places that I want to see
Find a hidden corner I can take you to
I've been around the world, but it's seen right through me

And if I do just one thing with my life
I'll get the truth for you tonight
'Cause there's more to me than this twisted side
I'll get the truth for you tonight

If it kills me
If it kills me.

- Therapy?, "If It Kills Me"

Current Mood: scared scared
Current Music: The Dirtbombs - "Underdog"


Thu, Oct. 16th, 2003 03:30 am

Cubs lost, of course. It's all right. I should have learned by now that I should only invest pleasure in this team, never hope. I should have discerned that the Cubs have a terrific pitching staff, but that such a thing is actually a negative asset when you have only an average fielding team. Better to have good fielders and a lousy pitcher, I always say. You can retire your side in three pitches, by catching all pop flies (like the Marlins did so many times in this series), rather than taking six pitches or more to maybe strike out a batter, thus wearing down the stamina of Matt Clement or Kerry Wood or Kyle Farnsworth or whoever your ace pitcher is--not to mention wearing down the patience of your team and your fans--for the same results. In the long term, your good pitchers tire and retire sooner, and when they start making mistakes, the outfield can't catch up. Florida, as much as I grunt at their presence in this World Series battle (their underdog cred almost spent by now), have luminaries in every department: Josh Beckett on the mound, smart enough to know when to throw a pitch straight enough to look appealing to the batter but crappy enough aerodynamically to land a pop fly; the scrappy Miguel Cabrera in right field, grabbing every deep hit sent in his direction; and Cabrera and the irresistably likable Mike Lowell cleaning up in the batter's box. I just couldn't help but admire their perseverence throughout this matchup--if the Sox don't pull up an AL win later tonight, the Marlins definitely have my vote for World Series winners. Even if it is their second time.

The Cubbies? Other than the aforementioned bullpen staff (psychological pitchers in a physical game), Kenny Lofton seems to know what he's doing out in center, but everyone else got taken by surprise too easily. Must have been those long pitching wars that drained them of their strength. You sit around watching, like, ten pitches per batter, and it's no wonder you have to be jarred awake when you realize that ain't a foul tip that just landed two feet from you. As far as their hitters go...I've never been overly impressed with Sammy Sosa. He's too quick to swing on ANYthing that comes by; it was only some (dumb?) ump calls that saved his performance from all-strikeouts in this NL playoff series. Moises Alou has the veteran experience, but I swear that knock-kneed stance of his goes against everything my uncle ever taught me about being a good batter in baseball. I'm all for quirkier players in baseball--I think the Cubs could use their own Dennis Rodman figure to get folks laughing *with* rather than *at* them again (I think baseball could use its own Dennis Rodman figure right about now; no wonder everyone finds it such a stultifying game! Everyone's being too anonymous out there!)--but not when it comes at the expense of playing skill. Aramis Ramirez could turn into something eventually, but like Karros, Lofton, et al., all he's enjoyed is moments out there this season, not stretches.

So, did we earn the right to move on to the World Series? No more than a senior citizen "earns" a senior citizen's discount at Bob Evans. Of course it's been a long time. Of course we haven't been contenders since Harry Caray was in diapers and Abraham Lincoln (Matt Clement's great great grandfather?) was watching the game. But just being old don't cut it. You gotta be good. Are we good? C'monnnn...this is the Cubs we're talking about.

Setting that sarcasm aside, I gotta say that there's something fun about consistently backing the wrong horse in this sport I like. We, the collective congregation of Cubs, have always shown lots of "promise", and I like that. "Promise", in addition to having something to do with talent, also seems to have something to do with niceness. I remember those glory days of Dawson and Sandberg, Dunston and Grace, even The Bearded Sutcliffe Of Space Station Eleven (who was the last pitcher before tonight to hit a homer in the post-season playoffs, back in 1984!) They seemed like towering athletes to me, me with my glasses and decidedly NON-athletic geek physique. But they also seemed approachable, like they wouldn't mind if you wanted to stop by and say hi before the game. Or wouldn't mind talking about things other than the game--real people, in other words, who just happened to be terrific ballplayers, and happened to be on the same team. The Cubs of the 80's are the sole and entire reason I developed any interest in the sport to begin with.

And did they do any better than the current crop o' Cubbies? Of course not. They only helped make Wrigley into the "Friendly Confines" for me, made baseball feel like a giant Jungian Friendly Confines of the unconscious. Before I heard about Barry Bonds charging for autographs and the entire enterprise kinda jumped the shark on me. Before the Players' Strike, the inestimable shark-jumping moment for any honor or friendliness in baseball. I learned the important value of rooting for the underdog, even when rooting for the underdog had no visible effect on the underdog's performance. And through that--to quote Sly And The Family Stone (and most recently the Dirtbombs, in an awesomely funky cover of the song that you really must check out sometime)--to know how it feels to get demoted, when it comes time to get promoted, cuz they think you movin' up too fast. Yeah yeahhhhhh.

But as Sly appended to those verses of bitterness, "I'm the underdog/But I don't mind, cuz I can handle it." You never see the Cubs wracked with hatred, vengefulness, or self-doubt when another season like this goes by and we fail to do Chicago Fried Chicken right. They don't ultimately mind, cuz they can handle it. And, by extension, so can we. We sigh, look down, then tilt our heads up, smile, and laugh. Next spring is only six months away. And we all had a good time, didn't we?

I am not a sports fan, but I am a Cub fan. And I always will be. I think very little of that has to do with baseball.

~ ~ ~

That loss changes moods and bank accounts, but it most likely doesn't change lives. What's happened to kdawggy tonight does change lives. I'm not doing my best these days as far as finding the right words goes, as you are about to find out if you continue to read along. But I do know that nothing can prepare you for something as devastating as the death of a parent. I have spent a lot of today asking for God's help in dealing with my day, and...well...I'm not sure that He has delivered on every step today. Which is most likely for my own good. The point is, I come home when all is said and done, and discover that I did NOT have a bad day. YOU have had a bad day. And right now, I am just praying as honestly and directly as I can that God can lend some comfort to you and your family right now. I cannot begin to fathom what would happen if either of my parents were to die. How tumultuous my emotional makeup would be, how alone I'd feel. I guess I'll find out someday. You may be feeling all of these things right now, or worse. All I can offer, myself, right now, is that I and those who know you care for you very much (despite our frequent sardonicisms to the contrary), and I sincerely wish you all the aid possible in dealing with this moment. You're a terrific fellow, and I'm very sorry to hear that this happened.

~ ~ ~

Those are two big and legitimate events that have made me feel bad today. Would you like to know of a third series of events that teed the whole thing off? No, you wouldn't, because it really isn't as important in comparison. Especially with Kevin's situation. For most of you, all you need to know is that I had a day that made me feel awful and worthless inside. Some days are like that. Others, not. The end.

Now for the rest of you, come on in.Collapse )

Current Mood: depressed depressed
Current Music: Lyrics Born - "Callin' Out"


Thu, Oct. 9th, 2003 02:14 am

I'm not really this judgmental. Or try not to be. It's just a fun lil' workbook activity. And a great way to let off steam.

Parents who bring squalling brats to R-rated movies
Circle I Limbo

The New York Yankees, Celine Dion
Circle II Whirling in a Dark & Stormy Wind

Scientologists, Bill O'Reilly
Circle III Mud, Rain, Cold, Hail & Snow

Democrats, Rednecks, Objectivists, PETA Members, Militant Vegans, Terrible public speakers
Circle IV Rolling Weights

Ironists, Michael Bay, Qusay Hussein, Anyone associated with "reality television"
Circle V Stuck in Mud, Mangled

River Styx

Bill Gates, Republicans, Fake Christians, Uday Hussein, General asshats, Men
Circle VI Buried for Eternity

River Phlegyas

Homophobes, Uncaring capitalists, Whoever invented Monday mornings
Circle VII Burning Sands

The ACLU, Ignorant Americans, The major record labels
Circle IIX Immersed in Excrement

Osama bin Laden, Saddam Hussein, Nazis, Credit card companies
Circle IX Frozen in Ice

Design your own hell

Current Mood: amused amused
Current Music: Wire - "The Art Of Stopping"