Reality Ain’t Real Enough?

Grindstone. There are people who work and those who don’t. Most work. Few don’t. Some who don’t work now had to work at one time, possibly acquiring enough resource to not have to work any longer. Most of us, though, work. Every day. T0 stay alive. Strange, having to work to stay alive. Like sprinting through the jungle daily after a dinner boar. Like plowing a field from dawn to twilight, or being a factory hand on 12 hour shifts alongside those who’ve lost fingers or most of their pensions.

I must be one lazy ess oh bee.

‘Cause I’m just sitting watching bad TV.

Instead of out looking for a jay oh bee.

So they’re going to make a pirate-hunter reality show? The waters off Africa will be the new battleground for ratings and armchair commandos as the internet forums will fill up with camo-flag waving netizens proposing battleplans and strategies. Sweet. There’s a cougar reality show? I can only pray it’s like this, proving once again that life only gets better as it goes. America truly is a melting pot because as soon as someone thinks of a way to make something more edgy, more hip, more digusting and shockingly fascinating, it eventually implodes under it’s own pressure to perform, never to be heard from again. But until then…

Prison shows are pretty strange, some of the convicts interviewed enjoy a little attention and celebrity while wistfully commenting on their life sentences and what their tattoos mean.  A whole society behind bars, a mindset much different than those who drive Subarus and Volvos. Louie the Fly from the Satanic Brotherhood in cell block C lives quite a different life from Ann in San Diego scrabbling up the corporate ladder or Henry in Scranton who sells things like vacuum cleaners and encyclopedias.

Ego-whore housewives of the disgustingly privleged, see who can lose the most weight where contestants who fail are paraded across the stage to have pies thrown at them, there’s even a show that follows repo men around so we can see the reaction of deadbeats and the penniless as they have their belongings repossessed while being taped for a television audience. The moral of every episode: “pay your bills.” Thanks for the insight.

I’m waiting for the show that follows around corporate executives so we can see them shut down entire production plants and laugh all the way to the Mexican cartels. Or maybe have a television crew can follow Joe into the manager’s office and we can all watch his eyes as he’s laid off. Then pan to the boss whose remorse is no doubt gleaned from a great make-up job and clever lighting. No shortage of subjects there, why not show grade schoolers grappling with the fact they need to pack up their toys becuase they’re being evicted since both parents lost their jobs? We could call it “You’re Fired!” or “The Young and The Homeless”.

My nation of rabid, morbid voyeurs, vicarious tragedy is how we sleep at night, assured of a better life than the one we just watched break down. Admittedly, I’m guilty of pleasuring myself with the televised trainwrecks of America and I’ll happily use the TV Guide or People magazine to wipe my belly. Of Dorito crumbs, of course.


Here’s A Tip

Everyday in life whenever we deal with another human being it comes down to the service. Even with our best friends, or our mothers or our dogs and cats, either we are serving or being served. Either we’re helping or we’re being helped, regardless of what the occasion is. We serve whether we realize it or not, whether it’s in the form of favors or gifts, opening doors or closing windows, it doesn’t matter because service is all we either do or receive.

I write this because I was in a country where they’re getting used to the idea of tipping and while many locals (and foreigners) still don’t practice it, I tried to whenever and wherever possible. I do the same here in the states.

The equation of gratuity and tip percentage is determinate on the amount of fun, satisfaction and impression one finds in the midst of an establishment. Period.

Guy who pumps your gas in the freezing cold went the extra mile? Kid who helps bring the groceries out to the car without being asked? When people do something that’s within their job description so well that you notice it, why not throw them a dollar? A dollar. That’s a candy bar, an hour’s worth of downtown parking, less than a city bus ride.

That dollar means a lot more than any of those things if someone kicks it down because you’re kicking ass.

Diagnosis: Media Diversion Flu

Bird flu pandemic sweeps the globe. Monkey pox is the deadliest of diseases. Protect your children. Buy duct tape now. West Nile, Dengue Fever, HIV, watch out folks, it’s in the water, buy bottles of Coke or Pepsi-produced water now.

American Swine Flu is an ailment that affects the pigs across the nation, those who ravage the dollar menus of fast food joints and who just open the bottom part of the Pringles can so it can easily empty down their throats.

Everytime all the news networks jump on the media bandwagon of fear-reporting, the paranoia blitzkreig only means that big-time things are happening in the news we aren’t being told about. That darn First Ammendment goes both ways.


The Dog Loves Balls

The dog is wonderfully just that. A dog’s dog. Black and nondescript, wagging a tail while grinning with jowls and panting jaws. Not a toy or a show, or a racer or a fighter. He’s merely a joyous giant, a powerfully muscled mass of root instinct and predatory drive. A lolly gagging, tongue lagging, snorter and drooler, a consummate aficionado of anuses and fence posts.

This particular animal loves balls. Grabbing them in his mouth, gnashing and whipping his head about, he especially loves catching them when kicked or thrown. Balls. Not bones, sticks, frisbees or squirrels, just balls. Basket, base, soft, foot, soccer, tennis, you name it, he’ll chase it. He’s a fun, beautiful, big dumb dog. Loves to love and loves the balls. He may be the woman’s guardian but he’s my best friend.

And here I swore to never post personal nonsense about pets, sweaters I’ve knitted or birthday party pictures where all my friends are holding up duckfarts at TGI Fridays.

Salut. imgp4178

Will Work For Nuts

“You have to apply online only. ”

“There is no one to talk to. It’s all done online now.”

“HR only speaks to those who already work here. Apply at our website.”

I am looking for work in a bar in a hotel in Portland, Oregon and I had no idea that this recession/depression wasn’t just a news channel’s reason to name it something like “Economic Anemia”, “Jobpocalypse” or “Obama’s First Failure”.

I am about to walk into a place with my laptop and slap it on the counter and fill out their online applications right then and there. The whole planet has gone online and now I’m thrown in the mix with a ton of other people who are either absurdly overqualified or are too busy growing beards and buying vintage clothes to notice that there isn’t any one person you can just talk to for a job. It’s a corporate ordeal of internet questionnaires and slick websites that only remind you that apparently the real money is in designing websites and providing a service to those 1 percenters that own the earth. No, not those 1 percenters. These ones. I’m essentially unable to display my unique ability to charm people into giving me money and jobs and stuff.

Crimeny, a thousand people are applying for the same lousy bedturning job and living in the state with the 2nd highest unemployment rate in the nation, my confidence is waning. I figured I would just come home after traveling, decompress, talk to a few folks, bark up a couple trees, and voila: a job. What’s the problem? Not only have I failed to properly acclimate to the frigid air, tight pants and “sustained” lifestyle of my lovely beaver state, finding a gig in my particular burg is a seemingly insurmountable feat.

I have yet only to begun to track down those who actually do the hiring because once they get a load of my grinning idocy that precedes my astute ability to get the job done right, I’m in like James Coburn.

This Semester I Get An F For Blogging

Surrounded. Like a convict in the grass, stripes down my back and crouching. The walls of this old house close in like deputized bloodhounds, barking and howling like the the wind through the drafty wrinkled windows.

I awake in a house next to a woman too good for me in a house too grand for me. Spoiled for a year while traveling I forgot what it’s like to be grounded and stable. Now that I’m home my writing has taken a back seat to settling in, searching for a job, reacquainting myself with my relationship.

Blocked. Like a convict in the grass, breathing stifled but heartbeat booming. All these words circling my head like buzzards but not being able to find the right road out of my mouth. Or fingertips.

The word “rageaholic” in the header may change. I ain’t no rageaholic. More like a whineaholic. I haven’t been keeping up on my fellow bloggers and their progress and obsess, haven’t been following the news or politics or murders or miracles, as soon as I returned to the media capital of the universe I totally dropped out. I still need to track down those I spoke to while overseas, old friends and school chums, lovers and business contacts.

I hereby vow to crank the Big & Rich, Dead Kennedys, Venom and Willie Dixon while I write as to assure me something worthwhile to post. Everyday.

I solemnly swear. Like a drunken sailor. Or a cornered fugitive.