Dang it All
Trials and Travails of a 20-something
Friday, March 31, 2006

What is being lost is the magic of the word. I am not an image person. Imagery belongs to another civilization: the caveman. Caveman couldn't express himself so he put images on walls.
~ Elie Wiesel, 1995
Music playing right now: The Buggles - Video Killed the Radio Star

I blame Hollywood. And Bollywood. And those damn independent producers. There's just too much to watch these days.

Kelsey and I signed up for Netflix about a month ago. And we've enjoyed it so far. It's nice to be able to skip the trips to Blockbuster and know that as soon as Tristram Shandy comes out on DVD it's headed straight to our mailbox. But the damn discs just keep coming. And coming.

Since they charge by the month, not the movie, I feel like in order to get my money's worth I need to pack as many movies as I can into those 30 days. Which means that as soon as a red envelope shows up, I'm on edge, waiting until I have 2 hours of free time to quickly watch the movie, send it back, and get the next one on our ever-growing queue. The back of my mind is always thinking, ''If we can make it through 10 movies this month, it's only $1.50 each. We've got 45 other movies in our queue that we'll never get to if we don't watch this one.''

I should relax and enjoy The Curse of the Were-Rabbit, but instead I try and squeeze it in late at night so I can put it back in the mail the next day and revel in my triumph over Blockbuster's $3.99 rental fees. And I end up drooling on the couch arm when I fall asleep.

Now we've decided to embark on a quest into the giant world of TV on DVD. More and more discs are being added to our queue. And there's no end in sight. Little hope for a long spate of fetid crap we don't really want to see. I've been snared by Netflix.

Thursday, March 30, 2006

Solitude shows us what should be; society shows us what we are.
~ Robert Cecil

I've been surprised at how insular Kelsey and I have become since moving to Myrtle Beach. When we first moved here, I worried that we'd be lonely and bored all the time, that we'd have nobody to hang out with. And for a while, we were a little bored. But then we met a few people, and found things to do, and adjusted to our new life. And I think we're pretty happy. We don't go out and light up the town very often. We don't even hang out with other people that often. But I'm not sure it really matters to us that much. We're just having fun by ourselves.

Kelsey and I go for long walks on the beach, play backgammon at the coffee house, bike around the neigborhood and watch The Amazing Race. All by ourselves. And we love it. My concerns about us getting tired of each other have turned out to be completely baseless. We stick together like peanut butter and velcro and are just as sweet (and sometimes a little nutty!).

Maybe someday we'll expand our circle and have a full social circle, but for now, we're just fine going it solo together.

Saturday, March 25, 2006

"I kill me"
- ALF

I think I have a smidgen of ALF in me. While I haven't found any taste for cat (yet), I do crack myself up a lot. Kelsey will attest to the fact that I have a fondness for puns and bad jokes. And while they may not amuse anybody else, I can often giggle at my own cleverness for hours, days, even months. Months ago, I looked deep into Kelsey's eyes and told her, "You make me feel...you make me feel...you make me feel like a natural woman." I thought it was hilarious. It still makes me chuckle. Often. And Kelsey thinks I'm as funny as Helen Keller in a dodgeball match. In other words, not funny at all. Definitely not funny.

Tonight I found myself amazed at my own wit by a comment I left on Eliot's blog. Being the environmentally aware guy he is, Eliot highlighted world water day, which seeks to provide fresh drinking water to parched mouths around the world. Struck by their predicament, I retorted with a caustic, pithy bit of wit that has kept me smiling all night: 'Let them drink coke.' I find it amusing on so many levels.

I may need help.

Monday, March 20, 2006

Love is in the air...

Saturday, March 18, 2006

My second sock creature came out looking much better than my first:
Picture of the Day


Friday, March 17, 2006

Kelsey and I are just starting to appreciate living in a place where we can get up and say, "Do you want to go for a walk on the beach?" Our new plan is to work up to walking from one end of Myrtle Beach to the other. Maybe overnight. Life is good by the ocean.

Monday, March 13, 2006

There's just something inherently funny about the word 'fart.'

Friday, March 10, 2006

Devotees of grammatical studies have not been distinguished for any very remarkable felicities of expression.
~ Bronson Alcott
Music playing right now: Le Tigre - What's Yr Take on Cassavetes

Oh, those tricksy homonyms.

In the early stages of every romantic relationship there comes a time of tension, a time of unmentioned strain when it becomes obvious that neither person has uttered the L word. New couples will dance around the word for weeks, perhaps months, before one member summons the intestinal fortitude to risk crushing rejection. The fear of being the only one in love knots in the pit of the stomach and just sits there, like a stubborn chunk of angst.

In the interests of putting off this terror as long as possible, fresh-faced paramours will employ all sorts of tricks. For example, the almost-saying-it-but-not-quite-yet technique: "You know, I really really like you. A lot. A whole lot." Or the made-you-think-I-was-going-to method: "Kelsey, I love ... the way you look in that dress."

A few weeks after Kelsey and I had started dating, she tried a new method on me, the homonym approach. We were at a movie, at one of those theaters that projects film trivia and ads onto the screen before the movie while pop music plays in the background. We were chatting a bit, answering the odd question that popped up in front of us and pretty much just waiting for Monsieur Ibrahim to start. We had drifted into silence when all of a sudden, Kelsey looked at me and said "I love you too." I was stunned. Surprised. Confused. I gagged on my tongue and threw up my heart. I went back through all of our recent conversations in my head to see if I'd let the L word slip yet. I was pretty sure I hadn't. I'd thought about it, but was still working up my courage. So why was she saying "I love you too"? What had I missed? What was going on?

And then she said something about how Bono had a really unique voice and I realized my mistake. Damn Irish band got my hopes up.

She maintains that the whole thing was an accident. She wasn't trying to play with my emotions. She didn't even think of how it sounded. And that's all probably true. But I still believe there was some part of her that knew what was going on and let it slip. Some Freudian unconscious segment of her mind that knew what I was thinking and wanted to prompt me to say it sooner. Love's a sneaky thing when it wants to be.

Picture of the Day


Thursday, March 09, 2006

Picture of the Day


Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Don't forget that the flavors of wine and cheese depend upon the types of infecting microorganisms.
~ Martin H. Fischer
Music playing right now: Bobby McFerrin - Coyote

Don't put that in your mouth.

I have to tell myself that quite a bit during the day. Whenever I come upon something unknown or interesting, one of my first instincts is to stick it in my mouth. Sometimes, this is OK. It works fine when faced with an assortment of mystery-flavored jellybeans. Or when walking through an herb garden. It works less well when cleaning.

I opened the refrigerator the other day and found something sticky on the top of the bag of lettuce I picked up. Naturally, I stuck my finger in my mouth to figure out what it was. It turned out to just be lemon juice leaking from the bottle on the rack above, but I think I was lucky. I credit this urge of mine with my ironclad stomach. I can eat pretty much anything and suffer almost no digestive repercussions.

I figure that the millions of germs I have ingested over the years have mutated into sentient beings by now. Beings who have joined into tribes and clans. There are probably city states in my intestines. These Spartan-like germ warriors jealously guard their colon communities, repelling any new invaders. Which pretty much gives me carte blanche to eat whatever I want.

But probably not everything. The time when I really have to watch myself is when I scoop our cats' litterbox. Marzipan and Truffle don't have much to do during the day, so they keep themselves amused by eating and pooping quite a bit. And by the time I convince myself it needs to be cleaned there are 15 or 20 little kitty turds in the sand. And every single one looks like a breakfast sausage. Exactly. It's uncanny. Every time I perform my sanitary duty, I wonder if they taste like sausage too. And I have to remind myself that there are lines that should not be crossed, tastes that should not be tried. It's tough, but I keep up the good fight. And so far, I'm winning.

Unless there's something weird looking on my desk.

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Chess is a foolish expedient for making idle people believe they are doing something very clever when they are only wasting their time.
~ George Bernard Shaw

I finally reached my goal. Last night, I triumphed in my endeavor to top the leader board of WEBoggle. Truly, it was a historic night.

Friday, March 03, 2006

Ugh. Three giant cups of coffee and five Sam's Club cupcakes do not a happy stomach make.

Food is an important part of a balanced diet.
~ Fran Lebowitz

Kelsey and I both woke up this morning just feeling kind of blah. Not particularly grumpy, or mad or sad. Just blah. It's a good thing they had cupcakes when I got to work.

There's a reason that Kelsey and I will probably never buy a home here in Myrtle Beach. I edited a story last night on home prices in the area. Prices in most neighborhoods increased about 30 percent last year. That's huge. But what really surprised me was the average cost of living on the beach. It depends on the location, but you'd have to shell out at least $1 million. Compared to the average prices last year, those homes have doubled in value. Doubled. That's insane. When's this bubble going to burst?

Wednesday, March 01, 2006



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