Jun 30, 2008

Empire State Oblivion

There a certain pride that goes with being a native New Yorker. I assume the same can be said for natives of Boston or Chicago or San Francisco or pretty much any city, town, village or hamlet that is loved by it's residents. I can only be called a "native New Yorker" in the loosest sense, however. I'm not from New York City nor have I ever lived there. I have, however, spent my entire life living on it's outskirts about a one hour train ride away from the Big Apple. By the way, I do not approve of the term "the Big Apple". I don't know why I just used it. Maybe just to tell y'all that I don't approve. Feh.

Anywho. Besides the pride in your hometown of choice, there also exists a certain oblivousness to what can only be called tourist attractions. Faneiul Hall in Boston. The Sears Tower in Chicago. That really big ball of twine in Darwin, Minnesota. You know what I mean. In New York we have the United Nations, the Statue of Liberty, the hole in the ground that was the site of an unthinkable tragedy and the Empire State Building. But we, the royal we, really don't think twice about those sites. Everyone else comes to our cities to see them, and they can have them. We, once again the royal we, just don't care about them.

Would you believe that in the thousand times or so that I've been to NYC I have never been to any of these sites? Oh, I got about a block and half away from the hole in the ground a couple of years ago, but that memory is still stuck too firmly in my throat so I couldn't force myself to get any closer. And I had a class trip to the Statue of Liberty once, but we never even made it inside.

And I've never been inside the Empire State Building.

In fact, and this is sad, I've never even really cared to find out exactly where it was. I mean I saw it from a distance as I drove into the city or took the train. And I guess I may have seen it from hotel rooms or friend's apartment buildings. But I really just never cared.

So a few years ago I was walking around Midtown with a friend of mine. We were walking by an obviously large building with the rest of the touristy Midtown crowds. That's when I saw a plaque on the building identifying it as the Empire State Building.

I stopped. I may have stepped back and looked up. Then I said "Huh!"

My friend wanted to know what was up, so I told him that it was the Empire State Building. I even went up and patted the side of the building like it was a well-behaved doggie. "So" he said. That's when I told him that I was surprised because I never really knew where it was before. And I started to walk away.

My friend couldn't believe it. He knew how often I am in the city and he just couldn't believe it. But I just never cared. I still don't.

I'll leave it to the tourists.

(Hope all the attendees of BrittCon 2008 had a great time in NYC!!! Did y'all see the Empire State Building? ;)

Jun 27, 2008

10 Embarrasssing Moments

Stolen from Slyde, because that's how I roll. I don't know if I can actually rank embarrassing moments. There is no such thing as a Fujita scale for measuring the intensity of my tornadic embarrassment. Something is either embarrassing or it isn't. So here goes:

1. After receiving a new laptop at work, I immediately wanted to check out the keyboard action. So I called up MS Word and started typing just random gobbledygook. I briefly mentioned how much I enjoyed one of my fellow co-workers tits somewhere in there. (Before you ask...no I didn't work with Salma Hayek. But if wishes were fishes...) Then I started working. A few hours later another co-worker came to me with a question on how to do something in Word. I told him, but he wasn't getting it. So I had him sit down at my laptop to do it. He went to Word and saw my paragraph or so of nonsense and turned around with a big shit-eating grin. "Um, dude...you might wanna erase that before someone else sees it." Crap!

2. In a drunken bout of self-expression, I did a pose-down of Playboy centerfold models while fully dressed in a suit at a very-crowded bar. I didn't remember it until the next day when someone mentioned it. Crap!

3. I peed in the corner of a hotel room. I was reasonably aware that I had done it immediately afterwards, but I held on to some hope that it was all just a bad dream. When I awoke the next morning I convinced myself that it was. Too bad that I left behind a witness. And all this occurred while my little sister slept in the living room next door. Crap!

4. I once went into one of those peep show places in Times Square. Back when there were peep shows in Times Square. I had never been in one before and I haven't been to one since. I didn't really understand what you were supposed to do. But I paid my $20, or whatever it was, and I was told to pick a girl out of the lineup. There were about 8 girls working that night, so I picked the least nasty-looking out of them. I had 5 minutes in the booth with her. So I go into something that looks like a confessional booth (wonderful for my latent Catholic guilt), and she goes into the booth next to me. The panel slid away and there she was behind the glass. She started taking off her clothes and posing for me. At this point, for some reason, I didn't think she could see me. So I'm a little shocked when she said "What's the matter baby? You don't like what you see? Why don't you take it out and show it to me?" Huh, what? Is that what you are supposed to do in these places? Not for me, thank you very much. I ain't jacking it in front of a total stranger. Especially a total stranger WHO CAN SEE ME!!! And I told her just that. And then I asked her to turn around so I could high-tailed it outta there. Now I now I didn't actually do anything there that was embarrassing, except for BEING embarrassed, but I find it very embarrassing anyway. I'm shaking my head at myself even now as I write this. Crap!

5. I once farted horrendously...it was both loud and awful-smelling...at work one Saturday afternoon. I thought I was in the office alone at the time. I actually got up out of my chair and walked out of the office to let 'er rip in the hallway. There were cubicles, empty I thought, right next to my office and I didn't check to see if anyone was there. I just let it go. A minute or so later, with the stench of my work still stale in the air, I see two of the women I worked with run past my office laughing so hard they were crying. Or maybe they were crying because of the smell. I dunno. Crap!

6. I had a terrible habit in college of drinking to the point where I blacked out. And then I would start drinking even faster. And I almost always puked at some point. Sometimes in very public and awful places. I woke up one morning feeling semi-alive after a night of legendary drinking. My roommate was already up doing some work at his desk. He asked how I was feeling. I said okay. Then I looked around the room and noticed that two posters were missing on either side of our doorway. I asked what happened to them. He turned around and couldn't believe I didn't remember. He said I woke up in the middle of the night and couldn't figure out how to get out of the room to get to the shared bathroom down the hall. So I just started puking. Everywhere. I tagged both posters and a pair of his shoes. I felt horrible. That's when he told me to look in my laundry basket. Crap!

7. I've already told you about the time that I told Sarah Jessica Parker that I loved her. Haven't I? This one isn't so embarrassing, I mean is it? I mean, it's more like a cute story that you tell people so that they can laugh along WITH you, not laugh AT you. Right? She was/is a big star and I was pretty drunk at the time. I was also still riding the celebrity high from having met Mel Brooks and Anne Bancroft earlier in the evening. That has to count for something. Right? I mean I could have told her that I hated her guts or something. That would have been more embarrassing. Right? No? Crap!

8. Since one particularly harrowing incident (dangerous, not embarrassing) in college, I've only had a handful of experiences where I've blacked out. One of them occurred during my first trip to New Orleans. I drank myself silly the first day there, and the last thing I remember was being so drunk that I lost the ability to speak at a bar on the other end of the French Quarter from where we were staying. So I just left. Without saying a word. The next day I woke up feeling okay, but with a throbbing pain in my ankle. I looked down and saw that my right ankle was about the size of a football. Then I saw my clothes sitting in a heap next to the bed. Tan pants and a yellow button-down shirt. And it looked like a truck ran over them. Several times. I pieced together that I fell down on the cobble-stoned streets at some point, seriously spraining my ankle. I somehow dragged myself back to the hotel and made it safely back to my bed. I must have been a sight walking through the lobby that particular night. Crap!

Phew! Only two more to go!

9. In the sixth grade I knew nothing about weed. I don't know much more today, but I was especially ignorant back then. So a couple of kids were talking about getting high one day, and I thought I would join in. So I listened for a while and then I asked where one would buy a pack of pot. You see, I thought pot came pre-packaged in rolled-up joint form. And you could buy it in a pack. Like cigarettes. I sure made the stoners laugh that day, and they didn't forget it very quickly either. For the rest of the year whenever one of them saw me they would laugh out loud and exclaim "pack of pot!!!" loudly while pointing at me. Crap!

10. I once had crime scene sex while spending the night over at a friend's house after a massive party. The woman I was with at the time (I hesitate to actually call her a girlfriend) was extremely drunk and extremely horny at the end of the night. So drunk that she didn't realize that she just got her monthly visit from Aunt Flo. Not until after she climbed on for two minutes of ecstasy. It looked like we slaughtered a lamb in that bed in the guest room. Expensive sheets too. Crap!

Jun 25, 2008

The Paper Bag

I was gonna try to explain the Paper Bag to y'all, but I think these two Youtube videos can do a much, much better job than yours truly. They are a bit dark and grainy, but you should get the idea. You might even see me stumbling around the place somewhere in there (you might, but I checked and you won't - Earl). Or you can just read about it here.

I'm heading out tomorrow night for the show and a certain special someone has her own solo this year. Very nice! Enjoy!

That second one is particularly hard to see. Crap!

Jun 24, 2008

Man...I don't know

Note: Teleporting new awfulness over at MovieGrenade for you to ignore.

Don Imus, a man that should never be relevant in discussion regarding either talk radio or race relations, is once again in the news. Yesterday he spoke about the decision of Adam "Pacman" Jones to stop using the Pacman nickname. In talking about who Jones is, he had this to say in a conversation with Warner Wolf:

Wolf: "Defensive back Adam 'Pacman' Jones, recently signed by the Cowboys. Here's a guy suspended all of 2007 following a shooting in a Vegas night club."

Imus: "Well, stuff happens. You're in a nightclub, for God's sake. What do you think's gonna happen in a nightclub? People are drinking and doing drugs, there are women there, and people have guns. So, there, go ahead."

Wolf: "He's also been arrested six times since being drafted by Tennessee in 2005."

Imus: "What color is he?"

Wolf: "He's African-American."

Imus: "Well, there you go. Now we know."

Source: NBC News

Now, I have to say that I immediately thought that Imus was up to his old ways again here when I heard that. A return to his "nappy-headed ho" form. Maybe he was. But today he had a rebuttal. Today he said that he was defending Pacman. He said that he was simply making a sarcastic comment about the state of race relations in this country. He said that he, Pacman, was being picked on BECAUSE he was a black man. Not that he was a bad guy BECAUSE he was black.

Sounds like someone is is doing a lot of back-pedaling there. He continued to say that what people should be outraged about is that black people get arrested in this country for no real reason. Really? Is that what you were saying, Don?

I dunno. I've listened to that first clip a few times now and I just don't buy it. His explanation today sounds rational, but it also sounds like rationalization. He insists that he was just trying to make a sarcastic comment about the state of race relations in this country.

I'm sorry, but a man with the history that Don Imus has in this arena shouldn't be making comments that could possibly be misinterpreted by the masses. If he meant to say that he is is outraged at the racial profiling that goes on in this country, he should have said just that. But instead he asks what color the guy is and then gives us a knowing "Well, there you go". To claim that those who thought he was being racist in the first clip are being ridiculous is equally as ridiculous. It's not like you don't have a past, dude!

Anyway, I'm not in favor of anyone getting fired for something they say. Who cares what this fossil of a man says anyway? I just can't believe that he still has an audience. He should lose his job through attrition. When the American public decides that he truly is irrelevant and they stop listening to him. That would be just fine with me.

Jun 23, 2008

Ice Box Man

George Carlin passed away yesterday after struggling with heart disease for many years.. While I was never a huge Carlin fan (I thought he was funny, but not THAT funny), my father was. He loved Carlin! A little weird considering how conservative my father was.

As my father was the ice box man in our family, he knew exactly where George was coming from in the monologue below. This is for him.

Rest in Peace, guys! - Earl

I'm the ice box man at our house. I'm Ice Box Man! I answer the call when there's a need at the ice box. Two very important responsibilities, the first one is: keeping people from standing with the door to the refrigerator open for more than 45 minutes at a time. God, that gets me mad - "YOU WANT TO CLOSE THAT GODDAMN DOOR PLEASE? YOU WANT TO CLOSE THE DOOR?! YOU'RE LETTING OUT ALL OF THE COLDNESS I SAVED OVERNIGHT! COME ON, CLOSE THE DOOR!" - you know, some guy smoked eight joints and he's gonna inventory my refrigerator. "Ummmm...Ummm...Uhhh.... "Here, here's fifty dollars- go down to the Burger King. Willya, God! We'll save more than that on electricity alone. Close the goddamn door, willya?"Look, if you wanna know what's in there, why don't you take a Polaroid picture and go away and look at the picture and then come back and figure out what you want. Years ago, we didn't have Polaroid cameras. We had to make an OIL PAINTING of what was in there!

Aah, I don't let it get me down. 'Cause there's a bigger responsibility. And that is getting into that refrigerator and deciding which things need to be thrown away. Most people will not take that responsibility. Most people will just go and get what they want, leave everything else alone and say, "Well, someone else wants that. Someone else will eat that" Meanwhile, the thing is getting smaller and smaller and smaller and is, in fact stuck to the rack. Well, I've got to go in there and decide when to throw things away. "Chocolate pudding? Does anyone want this last chocolate pudding? I have just one chocolate pudding left. It's only pulled away from the side of the dish about three inches all the way around. And there's a huge fault running through the center of the pudding. Actually, it's nothing but a ball of skin at this point. Does anyone want a ball of fault ridden chocolate pudding skin? I'm only going to throw it away."

Do people do that with you? Offer you some food that if you don't eat it, they're only going to throw it away. Well, doesn't that make you feel dandy? "Here's something to eat, Dave. Hurry up, it's spoiling!" "Something for you, Angela. Eat quickly, that green part is moving!" "Here, Bob. Eat this before I give it to an animal." Y'ever been looking through the refrigerator and you come across an empty plate? Boy, that starts me to wondering. Did something eat something else? Maybe the olives ate the tuna! Maybe that chicken isn't really dead yet. Actually, I picture a little mouse with gloves and a parka on, y'know. Just waiting for the lights to go out.

Perhaps the worst thing that can happen is to reach into the refrigerator and come out with something that you cannot identify at all. You literally do not know what it is. Could be meat, could be cake. Usually, at a time like that, I'll bluff. "Honey, is this good?" "Well, what is it?" "I don't know. I've never seen anything like it. It looks like...meatcake!" "Well, smell it." (snort, sniff) "It has absolutely no smell whatsoever!" "It's good! Put it back! Somebody is saving it. It'll turn up in something." That's what frightens me. That someone will consider it a challenge and use it just because it's in there.

It's a leftover. What a sad word that is. Leftover. How would you like to be...a leftover? Well, it wouldn't be bad if they were taking people out to be shot. I might even volunteer. But, y'know, leftovers make you feel good twice. D'ja ever think about that? When you first put them away, you feel really intelligent- "I'm saving food!" And then, after a month, when hair is growing out of them and you throw them away you feel...really intelligent- "I'm saving my life!"

When you make a sandwich at home, do you reach down past the first three or four pieces of bread to go down and get 'the good bread'? It's kind of a self preservation thing, y'know? What you're really saying is, "Let my family eat the rotten bread! I'll take care of Numero Uno!" And down you go into the loaf. Down, looking for the two that you want, a matching pair. And you have to be careful pulling them out so they don't tear. And then when you get them to the top, the upper eight slices fall the other way. I never straighten them out. I think, screw it, let 'em think a burglar made a sandwich. Not my job, straightening out the bread.

Gotta tell me. In the refrigerator, who is it, please that puts into the refrigerator the half-gallon containers of milk with only that much left in them? I get one of those every time. Hey, here's some milk- fooom! ...God, not enough to drink. Better put that back, huh? I know my responsibilities

Jun 21, 2008

Takin' a break

So this little anonymous blog-thing became a little less anonymous last night, it seems. I was mad with a friend of ours about something and it got back to her.

Right or wrong, that's not what I want THIS to be about.

So I've taken all the posts referencing my friends down and you won't see that shit any more.

I'll still be here, but I'm going to start censoring myself. Maybe I will just drop the whole "anonymous" think. I dunno. Whatever.

All I know is that there are some people I care about in the real world who aren't speaking to me right now, and they claim that it is because of this. Like I said before, right or wrong...that's not what I want THIS to be about.

UPDATE: I'm not closing comments on this one. You can comment if you want, but I won't be talking about it anymore. I don't want anyone to be upset with me over this stuff. So any discussion, on my part, of my friends is now off-limit.

Jun 20, 2008

Little Superstar

Thanks to the cats over at Deadspin for this one:

That's it. That right there. That is what the internet was created for. Thanks, Al Gore!

Jun 19, 2008

Fair Warning

BIG ASS UPDATE: Okay...I figured out how to do it and it was so simple even a moron like myself couldn't screw it up. All I had to do was turn off my site feed then go an publish all those old posts. After that was done, all I had to do was turn the site feed back on. Easy, peasy, lemon squeezy. So for all of you can't get enough of Earl, you know who you are, feel free to delve into my archives from 2005 thru August of 2006. That's the old shit, fuckers! Most of it is outdated. Movie review and whatnot, but I wanted to add it all just in case Slyde gets rid of the old stuff on his blog. And there's one or two posts in there that I am semi-proud of. And by "semi-proud of", I mean totally ashamed of. - Earl

In anticipation of Slyde eventually moving his blog over to Wordpress or Blogger sometime in the future, I've been in the process of moving my contributing posts from his blog over to this joint here.

They are all sitting in my draft post area right now and I'm gonna try to post them with the datestamp from when they were originally written.

Here's the problem...I would rather not have them show up on the RSS feeds as new posts. Are there any Blogger geniuses out there who can tell me how to do this? I mean, I've spent about 10 seconds looking into it and I'm exhausted.

But if I can't figure it out, be prepared for an onslaught of old Earl posts in your RSS feeds. Sometime tomorrow, maybe.

Like the title says...fair warning.

Edit: Since you are here anyway, read this article about a dude who managed to turn a NYC apartment building into a real-live Da Vinci Code something or other. Must be nice being that rich.

Patsy Cline

"I got a head of full of feelin' higher
And an ear full of Patsy Cline
There is just no one who can touch her
Hell I'll hang on every line
Oh crazy how things happen
It's incredible but true
Oh the longer I'm gone the closer I feel to you

Jimmy Buffett - "Miss You So Badly"

"There was a lot of hurt in Patsy's voice. A lot of deep love in her voice. And I think she portrayed that." - June Carter Cash

Jun 18, 2008

Time to get serious

I know that I've spoken about some pretty important things in my life over the past week or so. The sudden decision to start writing. The search for meaningful co-existence with my professional life. Family matters concerning religion and politics. A bit more thoughtful than the usual fare here on the Bug-Eyed Blog.

Now it's time to bring up something, well...two things, that are even more important than the life issues discussed in the past few days.

Ellen Barkin and Spicy Sweet Chili Doritos.

They both look delicious, don't they?

Now I know that Ellen Barkin and Spicy Sweet Chili Doritos aren't for everyone. Ellen isn't as young as she used to be and there are plenty of other snacks that folks might like other than those Doritos. Some people might not care for either of them. Those people are fucking idiots.

I dunno what it is about Ellen Barkin that makes me love her so. I hadn't seen her in years until I watched the snoozefest that was Oceans Thirteen last night. A snoozefast except for the scenes that Ellen Barkin lit up with cougar-ish ferocity. She may be in her mid-fifties now, but damn she looks good! I wanted to do naughty things to her last night. Naughty things that involved her naughty and crooked mouth. Mmmm...I love women with crooked smiles, especially older, sexy women with crooked smiles. Reminds me of...well, let's just say someone from my past.

So I took it out on a bag of Spicy Sweet Chili Doritos. Mmmm...they tasted good! I wonder how Ellen Barkin would like them? Maybe she could suck the spicy sweet chili crumbs off of my fingers with her naughty and crooked mouth. I wanted to fuck the shit out of that bag of Doritos. Just bend it over and give it a nasty ride.

Um, you guys know what I mean?



Jun 13, 2008

The ABC's of Earl

Cap'n Marrrk did a version of this over at his joint the other day. So I figured I would nick it for the weekend. I tried to stay away from the serious stuff. There's been too much of that going on lately. So I just had a good time with it instead.

A - Alcohol. Like there is anyone who reads this blog who didn't think I was gonna pick alcohol to represent the A's. "Whiskey is a drink so mellow and slow. First you get a taste and you want some mo." - Skavoovie & the Epitones

B - Buffy. Glorious Buffy. Was there ever a better TV show or role model for today's young ladies? Don't make fun of my Buffy obsession!!!

C - Cunt. My absolute favorite curse word that I never say. It sounds awful coming out of the mouth of an American. This one is strictly for the Brits and the Irish. Those fooking cunts!

D - Dave Grohl. One of my man-crushes. I've talked about this before, but I think it's healthy to air it out every once in a while. I wanna be inside of him. Did that sound too gay or just gay enough?

E - Elvira. Poppy just mentioned her over at her digs. A goth chick with a huge rack? What's not to love?

F - Fingernails. I chew 'em. But only two of them. I used to chew all my fingernails and cuticles, but I stopped a few years ago except for the ring finger on my right hand and the middle finger on my left hand. Now all of my finger chewing rage is focused on those two digits alone. I call them my bad fingers.

G - Gia, clearly. She's the love of my life and my bestest friend evah!

H - Hair. It's long and a bit silvery right now. As opposed to short and a bit silvery. Ya know?

I - Ice hotels. I'm obsessed with staying in one of them. I don't know why because I really don't like the cold weather that much. But the whole idea of staying in a hotel made of ice makes me smile. For some reason.

J - Jimmy Buffett. I've been a fan since I was 10 years old. I've seen him perform in stadiums, small charity events and even once on Duval Street in Key West. I'm a bit done with him now, but I still dig the music. Especially when I'm drinking and it's nice out.

K - Speaking of Key West...it's my absolute favorite place in the world. I would rather be listening to the juke box by the bar at the Green Parrot than just about any place on Earth.

L - Lost. How I feel sometimes, but also the name of my favorite non-reality show on television. Just how did Hurley manage to keep on all that weight?

M - Montauk. I wish there was a way for me to get to you without a helicopter and/or driving through the Hamptons. I would be there today if it wasn't a 3 hour drive with traffic. Something that is only 60 miles away shouldn't take you 3 hours to get to. Crap.

N - New Orleans. My second favorite place after Key West. I just read an article about how it has quietly become the murder capital of the U.S. in the past year or so. Not directly after Katrina, but just recently. I think it will be a while before go back. Shame.

O - Old school. That's how I kick it, beeyatches!!!

P - Potato Chips. My snack o' choice. My current favorite is Utz Salt N Vinegar, but I really love them all. No real sweet tooth, I guess I was born with a savory tooth.

Q - Quadrophenia by The Who. Simply the best album ever made. It's my first and last choice for a Desert Island Disc. I would bring 5 copies - lots of backups.

R - Runners. As in joggers. I hate them! I hate their little shorts and their cute socks and their slim physiques. Fuck them for getting off the couch and exercising while I drive to the deli for a breakfast sandwich. Fuck 'em!

S - Shoulder. My right one. It's annoying the crap out of me. I don't know what I did to it, but anytime I try any kind of athletic endeavor it barks at me. Crap.

T - Tits. Another obvious one. I love 'em. All shapes, all sizes, all ages (over 18). Tits are great! Everyone should have a pair they can play with. Either their own or a loved one's pair. Hey...remember that Martian chick with the three boobs in Total Recall? She's now an agent working in Hollywood and she was just featured on Denise Richard's new reality show. Denise called her a cunt. Nice!

U - Unforgiven. One of my all-time favorite movies, one that I would probably list at #1 if I were pressed to say it. There, I said it.

V - Andrew Vachss - my favorite author. They've come and they've gone, but I've stuck with Mr. Vachss for the past 20 years or so. Burke is the man.

W - Water. Sounds simple and stupid, right? But I'm obsessed with it. I wanna live by it. See it. Drink it. Touch it. Hear it. Everything but swim in it outside of a pool. Fuck that noise! There might be sharks and other bitey things in there.

X - XXX. I love the porn. Well, at times. Gia thinks it's weird that I prefer the print medium over DVDs, but that's just how I roll.

Y - The New York Yankees! It's been a tough season thus far, but I have faith. Plus Gia's dad played was signed by them out of high school and played in the minors with them. Once pitched batting practice to Joe D. Very cool!

Z - Zebras. Who doesn't love zebras? They look like pot-bellied little horses and they kinda resemble the decorations from those swingin' single pads in the 1970's. What was that pattern called again? (Z is a stupid letter, isn't it?)

On last thing before I head off for the weekend. This one is brought to you by New Orleans, Cliff Maegden and the letter "N". I've posted it before, but it seems relevant in regards to yesterday's post. Have a great weekend everyone!

Jun 12, 2008

What do you want to be when you grow up?

I've been thinking about that a lot lately.

In the past month or so the topic of my career, or lack thereof, has come up time and time again. And when I say it's come up, I mean that it's briefly mentioned and then I change the subject. Because that's how I deal with things that frustrate me. I internalize it.

I was very unhappy in the corporate world. I used to work crazy hours. 70+ hours a week wasn't unheard of. Saturdays. Sundays. I was telling a funny story the other day about how I would occasionally sleep at my desk on a Friday night because I had to be at work early that Saturday. Turns out it wasn't such a funny story.

Six years ago I was offered a job in Florida that I really didn't want to take. When I turned it down, I was told that it was either that or the road. I chose the road. They still needed me so I worked from home for another year or so. And I got used to it.

After a little break I began to consult for a small company that a friend of mine started. I wasn't making much, certainly not as much as I made when I was corporate. But I was happy. Sorta. I still didn't enjoy what I did on a daily/weekly basis, but it was a living. I had to simplify my life a bit, but that was fine.

It's been five years now and things haven't changed. I haven't grown. I need to move on. But its hard. Its damn hard. But I still need to do it. I need to move on. I need to do it for myself. I'm just not sure how to go about it. I'm not sure what I'm qualified to do. I'm not sure what I want to do.

I just want to be happy at work. And besides a short time as I transitioned from the office to the home office, I haven't been. Happy at home. Happy with my family. Happy with my friends. Happy with my Gia.

Just never at work.

Is anyone? I don't know if anyone in my life is happy with their work life. Why is it so hard?

Sorry. Just feelin' a little down about my life tonight.


So I started writing something last night. Out of the blue and with no preparation at all. I just sat on the bed with the Cubs game on in the background and started typing. I looked up a couple of hours later and I had written the first two chapters of what may actually turn out to be a novel. Then I moved onto the Yankee game and I kept on a typin'.

I'm not quite sure how this happened.

I've always wanted to write, but I've also always been far to lazy to commit to the process. A few years ago I went as far as to research some things for a Horror novel I wanted to write, and I even drafted an outline. It never went anywhere.

One of the reasons I started contributing to Slyde's blog all those years ago (and eventually starting my own) was so that I could write something other than financial reviews and interoffice memos. Something that would hopefully use whatever nugget of creativity that might still reside in my addled brain.

It just never happened.

Then last night Gia went to bed early. She wasn't feeling very well and she needed to lay down. Before she retired she mentioned that she was running out of books to read (she has been on a tear lately) and that she was going to head to the library today to look for something new. Something in her favorite genre. Coming of age books.

So I sat down and started writing my own. Maybe I'm writing it for her. And the words and characters and the situations just came to me. Effortlessly. It was strange and heady stuff.

I'm gonna head on down this road for a little while and see where it takes me.

Very odd.

Any advice I can ignore from my fellow bloggers?

PS - I used Blogger's new Blog Roll add-in to import my Google Reader feeds over to my sidebar. I'm likin' it! - Earl

Jun 11, 2008

Lawn Guy-Land

This stupid thing goes around Long Island email in-boxes every few months or so. I've never seen a list quite as comprehensive as this one, though. So a few of you may get some of these, a few of you won't care, and a few of you will wonder where the Hell Long Island is anyway. It's the erect penis that sticks out of NYC, that's where it is bitches!!!

You know you are from Long Island when... (My comments look like this)

  1. Flip-flops are normal, even in January. - Not in my neck of the island.
  2. You know exactly what they mean when they say "Don't change at Jamaica."
  3. You know that The Drift Inn and Neptunes are in the same building, but you also know that they are NOTHING alike. - I've been to Neptunes, but it was years ago. Who can remember this shit?
  4. Screw the SAT, you know the exact pronunciation of Islip, Wantagh, Commack, Mattituck, Shinnecock, Quogue, Ronkonkoma, Hauppauge, Mineola, Islandia, Massapequa, and Patchogue. - We honor our Native American brothers and sisters by naming towns after them. As all good thieves should do.
  5. You and your friends are going to the beach, but the word beach never comes up in the conversation. Instead, it sounds something like this..."Well, we could go to Jones, but Robert Moses is closer, the North Shore is too rocky...whatever lets go to the Hamptons". - Sorry...no one just decides to go to the Hamptons just to go to the beach. Fuck the Hamptons!
  6. You have no idea what jimmies are, or why someone would want to put them on their ice cream. - No idea.
  7. You have never used "wicked" as an adjective. - Not true. I call Red Sawx fans "wicked assholes" all the time.
  8. You know that Americana Manhasset is NOT a type of coffee. - Huh?
  9. You know that it's possible to take Jericho Turnpike all the way to Queens...but you would never EVER do it. - But I do take 25A all the way to Queens.
  10. Parallel parking in your drivers ed class was pointless...you only had to do it next to one car.
  11. You live in the shadow of the greatest city in the world, but you almost never go there. - So not true. Except if you are Slyde.
  12. When you're away from Long Island, you love it and when you're home, you don't.
  13. You think if you're not from Long Island or NYC, you're not really from New York. - Sadly, kinda true.
  14. You know the exact point at which Queens turns into Nassau simply on intuition.
  15. You don't go to Manhattan, you go to "The City."
  16. You never realize you have an accent till you leave.
  17. Everything north of the Bronx is "upstate."
  18. At some point in your life you've gone clamming.
  19. Either your parents or your grandparents lived in the city.
  20. You'd pay $11.50 for a movie.
  21. You don't live in Long Island. You live ON Long Island.
  22. You know where the Commack Motor Inn is. - And it's world-famous Jungle Room. Rowr!
  23. Your distant future might involve the state of Florida. - Please God, no!
  24. You know the location of 6 malls and a dozen McDonald's and 36 7-11's.
  25. You've tried to find the Amityville Horror house. - Hint: It doesn't really look like it does in the films.
  26. No, you don't want mustard on that burger!! - Yes, I fucking do!!!
  27. You can't understand why a diner would ever close. - Seriously!
  28. You've had a seagull poop on your car. - All the fucking time.
  29. You don't really see the big deal about the Hamptons, unless you got smashed at the Boardy Barn. - I may be the only LIer to have never gone to the Boardy Barn.
  30. You know White Castle is terrible for you and it gives you a stomach ache, but you periodically "Get the Crave."
  31. You want the Yankees to stay in the Bronx, but would probably go to more games if they moved to Manhattan. - Take the LIRR and walk to the Stadium? You fucking kidding me? Hell, yeah!!!
  32. You think that somehow, the Jets and Giants still play in New York. - Um, no...I've taken that trip way too many times to ever confuse New Jersey with New York. C'mon...it's fucking New Jersey people!
  33. You've missed that "Drunk Train," the 2:42 out of Penn, and had the dreaded wait until 5:30. - Been there, done that, bought that t-shirt.
  34. You or someone you know has owned an animal that came from North Shore Animal League.
  35. You've never taken an MTA bus. - We have buses?
  36. The Long Island Expressway isn't really as bad as everybody thinks. - Yes it is.
  37. You don't associate Fire Island with gay men. - Parts of it.
  38. You know which parts of the Godfather were filmed on Long Island.
  39. You've paid a $10 cover charge to get into a bar, but got nothing for it.
  40. You miss whiffle ball and running through sprinklers.
  41. Billy Joel said it best, "either you date a rich girl from the North Shore, or a cool girl from the South Shore." - I found a cool girl from the North Shore. Too bad she ain't rich.
  42. You have or someone you know has fallen asleep on the LIRR and ended up in one of these three places; Babylon, Port Washington or Hicksville. - See #33 above.
  43. You know that there is a big difference between any of the other Hamptons, and Hampton Hays. - All the Hamptons suck.
  44. The Belt Parkway sucks!
  45. You've been stuck in a traffic jam for more than 2 hours (without moving).
  46. Your parents took you to All American, Nathans or Carvel (on the way home from the beach).
  47. You don't have to go far to see your family.
  48. You remember Grumman.
  49. You know the color of the water at Jones Beach is not BLUE!
  50. You were upset when all the Roy Rogers turned into Wendy's (and the only one that is left is at exit 58 off of Sunrise) and Arby's closed for good.
  51. You can spout off all the LIRR stops between Penn Station and Ronkonkoma. - Penn Station and Huntington, yes.
  52. Paying $35 for a haircut doesn't sound so crazy.
  53. You think the people from Brooklyn are "da wunz dat tawk wit a accent." - Nah...we all do.
  54. You went sledding in the sumps.
  55. You knew of Massapequa before the Amy Fisher-Joey Buttafuoco nightmare.
  56. You think going to Queens is a hike. - At times.
  57. The first time you heard the term "Long Island Iced Tea" you were somewhere else and you laughed. - First one I had was in Saratoga while I was at college. Yeah, and I thought it was funny.
  58. When you live somewhere else and are astounded to see that people actually stop at yellow lights.
  59. Its rare to get really bad bagels or pizza on long island, almost as rare as it is to get good bagels and pizza anywhere else. - Well, NYC is still the King when it comes to pizza and bagels, but LI is a close second.
  60. You can name at least three bands that came from Long Island. - Twisted Sister, Zebra, Eddie Money...so that's a yes.
  61. You've partied in the woods at least once in your life.
  62. You know what Pilgrim State and Sweet Hallow Road are...and you are NEVER going again. - Actually they are talking about Sweet HOLLOW Road and Mt. Misery, but I've been driving on that stretch of road for decades and I've never found it creepy. Kinda peaceful and serene, actually. Pilgrim State, however, is uber-creepy. I grew up a stone's throw away and it used to rise above the scenery like the Marsden House in 'salem's Lot. Now, you can barely see it from where I used to live.
  63. You are never more then 20 minutes away from the water.
  64. You have been to at least one concert at Jones Beach. - Many. Mostly Jimmy Buffett.
  65. When you hear "the end", you think Montauk. Orient Point never crosses your mind.
  66. Wandering around Fire Island trashed is an acceptable plan for any night.
  67. Doing 90 over the Robert Moses bridge or on Ocean Parkway is perfectly fine.
  68. When you say that you are going to "the outlets", Tanger is implied.
  69. You have a friends who swears they saw Billy Joel somewhere in Oyster Bay. - Or Huntington, or Cold Spring Harbor, or wherever. Gia knows him a little. The last time she served him drinks he tipped her $1. Cheap bastard!
  70. When people ask "where are you from?" you answer Long-Guy-Land and automatically assume everyone in the world knows what that answer means. - Actually, I always explain because I think most people are stupid.

The most important thing that is left off the list is that the only folk who can make fun of Long Island live in Manhattan. Fuck the rest of the boroughs, fuck the rest of the State. Fuck the rest of the country. And fuck everyone else.

Except you guys, of course.

Oh...I forgot one last item. You know you are from Long Island when you know at least one person who went to High School with Mariah Carey and/or her prostitute sister. I know 5 or 6 people who went to High School with Mariah. A few who even went to the party that she threw to pay for her prom dress. Yeah...you can all make fun of us for that one. Sigh.

Jun 8, 2008

Spike Lee is a racist

Spike Lee had the following to say about Clint Eastwood and his two recent WWII films:

"He did two films about Iwo Jima back to back and there was not one black soldier in both of those films." "Many veterans, African-Americans, who survived that war are upset at Clint Eastwood. In his vision of Iwo Jima, Negro soldiers did not exist. Simple as that. I have a different version."

Dirty Harry had these wonderful quotes as a response:

"Has he ever studied the history?" And on the lack of African-Americans in Flags of Our Fathers, he said there was a small contingent of black soldiers stationed at Iwo Jima "but they didn't raise the flag. The story is 'Flags of Our Fathers,' the famous flag-raising picture, and they didn't do that. If I go ahead and put an African-American actor in there, people'd go, 'This guy's lost his mind.' I mean, it's not accurate."

And he continued with "A guy like him (Lee) should shut his face."

And finally about his film Bird, "He was complaining when I did 'Bird' [the 1988 biopic of Charlie Parker]. Why would a white guy be doing that? I was the only guy who made it, that's why. He could have gone ahead and made it. Instead he was making something else."

Doesn't Spike Lee know that it's not wise to piss off Clint? Clint could fuck Spike Lee up! It wouldn't even be a contest.

Listen, I'm a bit sick of Spike Lee. In all his movies all the good people are black and all the bad people are white. His thoughts on race were most obvious in his film School Daze. There were two sets of black students attending an entirely black university in the South. The lighter-skinned "wannabes" and the darker-skinned "jigaboos". They were wannabes because they straightened their hair and, in Lee's eyes at least, acted white. All the wannabes were morally awful and the jigaboos were righteous. What a dick!

But he's not racist. No way. You know why? Because he has stated that is impossible for a black man to be racist. That only white people can be racist by definition. Read a little about that argument here. Me? I don't buy it. It's not reverse racism, non-racism or any other bullshit term...it's racist when he applies stereotypical behaviour of any race to his protagonists and/or antagonists. One can glean from his films that all white people (Jews especially) are bad and all black people (except those trying to "act white") are good. I can't come up with any term to describe those broad characterizations besides "racist".

I know that the awful reality of racism against African-Americans is cemented into our country's history. There is no denying that. White America can never make it up to Black America for the horrible yoke of slavery that occurred when we were a young country. Nor can we make up for the 150+ years of bigotry that has occurred since slavery was ended, and sadly it still goes on today. I'm not saying that black people in this country haven't suffered. They have. And a lot of it has to do with racist attitudes and behaviour of white people.

I just don't believe that racism is a one-way street. It's entirely possible for a black person to have racist thoughts, attitudes and actions towards a white person. Or an Asian person. Or a Hispanic person. When you make judgements regarding a specific person based upon the color of their skin, that makes you racist. At least in my opinion.

But what do I know? I'm just a silly white dude writing a blog.

EDIT: It's been a while, but I'm still getting the occasional random (mostly anonymous) comment on this post.  I'm kinda over this, so I'm closing comments now.  Thanks everyone! - Earl

Jun 7, 2008


First time I've done this, but I deleted yesterday's post about the gentlemen who was caught after robbing a number of banks in my area.

I received an anonymous comment from someone asking for prayer and compassion for the man's family. It was clear to me that this anonymous commenter may also know the man and his family.

Upon re-reading the story, I realized that some of my comments may have been insensitive and I apologize for that. Of course it's not a funny story, even if it came across that way. It's a tragedy, especially for the man's family.

I don't want this blog to be any more than what it originally started out as. A place for me to occasionally spill my overloaded brain onto a web-page. Mostly for my amusement. Certainly never at the expense of someone more unfortunate than I.

I'm going to get back to posting about positive things right away. Right after I call Spike Lee a douchebag in tomorrow's post. - Earl

Jun 5, 2008

Repo Man

I'm watching Repo Man for the first time in something like forever right now. I forgot how much I loved this movie when it first came out. Maybe it was the year it came out, 1984. I graduated from High School that year and it's punk-rock listening protagonist was kinda familiar to me. Otto was a disenfranchised young guy living in the Reagan era of uber-blandness. Even the food and drink were labeled "food" and "drink". I felt a bond.

It may have been Harry Dean Stanton's best role as well. At least to those of us who love this film. Dry, funny and tough in ways that he rarely was either before or afterwards.

It also features bit roles by Angelique Pettyjohn as one of the Repo Wives and Jimmy Buffett (yeah...that Jimmy Buffett) as one of the Additional Blond Agents at the end of the film. What's that you say? You don't know who Angelique Pettyjohn is? Well maybe this will give you a hint:

That's right. She was Shahna, the green-haired vixen who fought/loved Capt. Kirk in the classic Star Trek episode "The Gamesters of Triskelion". Ahhh...that metallic bikini. I'll never forget it.

Anyway, it's a really great movie. Funny and weird and topical in an sci-fi kinda way. It feels a little dated, but really not too much so. I think if you liked it back in the day you would still enjoy it today. And if you've never seen it...give it a chance one rainy evening. You may find a new favorite.

I still use a bunch of the quotes from it to this day. Here are some of my favorites:

  • "What happened to your old lady?" - Otto, "Oh, shit I forgot all about her. She'll take the bus. She's a rock!" - Bud
  • "You know kid, usually when somebody pulls shit like that my first reaction is, uh, I wanna punch his fuckin' lights out. But you know something? YOU'RE ALL RIGHT!!!" - Bud
  • "You find one in every car. You'll see." - Miller
  • "Fuck you, Archie. Just for that you're not in the gang anymore." - Duke
  • "Look at 'em, ordinary fucking people, I hate 'em." - Bud
  • "What about our relationship?" - Leila, "What?" - Otto, "Our relationship?" - Leila, "Fuck that." - Otto
  • " I'd rather die on my feet than live on my knees." - Bud
  • "Repo man's got all night. EVERY NIGHT!" - Bud

PS - Well, my template doesn't seem to like to show bullet points. I'm too tired to try to fix it. Maybe tomorrow. Sigh.

Jun 4, 2008

The Mosaic that is Me

Nicked this one from Paige. Not going into detail about how to do it, but it's basically a photo meme. Check out the rules here, if you so desire.

So this is what the mosaic of my life could look like, eh? Using other folk's pictures, of course. I like the picture of the dreadlocked guy that came up when I answered "none" to favorite dessert. And where are all the naked women at? Oh, and I know a chose a Tardis for the last question, but I'm really not a Dr. Who fan...really. I just liked the pic.

Here are the direct links to the photographers who took these pics. Give them their props, ya know.

1. St. Michael's tower. Glastonbury Tor, 2. Pinocchio's Pizza farm, 3. guarding angkor, 4. green spar, 5. My dream Girl!, 6. Whisky on the rocks..., 7. Floating in paradise, 8. and then he smiled, 9. Ferryman's Tavern, 10. Don't you want me, baby?, 11. Hey your new lenses are driving me up the wall, 12. Earl's Court Tardis

Jun 3, 2008

Bloggers and Wordpress and Custom...oh my!

Before you ask, I have no idea if the data in this pie chart is correct. I just pulled it for illustrative purposes.

Anyway, Slyde has a post up right now about his future in the blogging world. He is still gonna blog, but he is thinking about making the move over to Blogger. You see he has developed his own site using Front Page software and has been doing so for years. He's not really happy with how his RSS feed is set up and rather than take the time to fix it, he is thinking about just making a move.

So, for the one or two of you who visit here but never visit my parent site (I started blogging on Slyde's blog years ago before setting my own blog up, dontcha know), I have a question.

What should Slyde do? Should he...

A. Stick with his own custom site, no matter what.
B. Move to Blogger.
C. Move to Wordpress.
D. Move to some other blog hosting site.
E. Stop blogging all together. His shit is stale!

I've included a poll for you to answer up there on the upper left (right, of course...thanks drunkgirrl- Earl) of this old blog. Let the masses decide, I always say.

But seriously, for those of you not using Blogger...what are the pros and cons of your own blog hosting site? I've already given Slyde my pros and cons with Blogger, but just so you don't feel like you are left out we would love to hear from the Blogger community as well.

So get crackin'!

And for all you Wordpress users out there. Do you use Wordpress.com or do you have your own hosting site and use the software downloaded from Wordpress.org? Inquiring minds and all.

Jun 2, 2008

No turning back now...is there?

Gia found out today that her marriage is officially over.

That's right...her divorce finally came through. For those of you who aren't in the know, she married a good friend of hers so that he could become a legal resident of these here United States of America. I guess he must have really wanted to live in the land of the free {insert snide comment here} to marry that woman! Just kidding, G!

So now she is free to wed the man of her choice. Hmmm...who could that be? She just asked me if that means she can now tell people that we are engaged. I said "no way"...not until I make it official with a ring and everything. Call me old-fashioned, but I don't think a couple can just decide to be engaged. One of them needs to sit down and officially ask the other in a serious and profound way. And it doesn't have to be over a multi-carat diamond ring (but she wants one). Hell, it can be over a cheeseburger if that's what floats yer boat. So she will have to wait before she can say it's official.

Plus, I like to make her sweat. ;)

This isn't anything she doesn't know, and she reads this blog occasionally so nothing I type here will come as a shock to her.

Tonight we are having dinner at a friend's house and we are going to celebrate her new life as a divorcee with some martinis (Sapphire with blue-cheese stuffed olives soaked in vermouth) and some champagne.

Look at me kids! I'm dating a divorcee! Rowr!

PS - Any news on forthcoming engagements will be posted here toot sweet. That's French...right?

Jun 1, 2008

Trapped in the Closet

No...not talking about Slyde. Although he still refuses to come out. Who is he foolin'?

I'm talking about R. Kelly and his opus, his Hip-Hopera...Trapped in the Closet. I know I'm a few years late in talking about it. It was released some time in 2005, but IFC has been playing it late at night in recent weeks and I have to tell you...it is brilliant!

I don't know much about R. Kelly besides claims that he is a pedophile and he likes to piss on women. His music sucks...that I know. But the man, whatever his faults are, is a comic genius.

Case in point. Watch the following chapter (there are 12 or more of them) and you decide. Brilliant or the end of civilization as we know it. I'm not quite sure. The action picks up after a short intro by some British dude. Enjoy!

My favorite part, besides the midget revelation at the end, is when the cop repeatedly asks her to move. Move. No. Move. No. Bitch move! She moved! I don't think Stanley Kubrick could have filmed that scene any better.

By the way, the midget turns out to be named Big Man...because he's blessed. You know...down there. He also shits himself and passes out a few times. Good times.