Thursday, April 29, 2004

My new entertainment as I stroll to and from work is to wave enthuisatically to strangers on the other side of the street. Usually, they sheepishly wave back with their faces mixed between confusion, deep thought as they try to remember my face, and the friendly greeting one gives when the fool waving to you is actually known by you. Most people indulge me by waving. Maybe its the suit. Maybe we all hope to have friends that excited to spot you from across the street. Once they wave I stop, smile, and continue on my way.

P.S. Random notes on people's cars are nice too. Leave things like "You have pretty hair". Regardless of whether you have seen that person. Or important notes meant for other people. like, "Please don't invade Poland".

Thursday, April 22, 2004

As I was passing two men chatting to each other in front of a coffee shop, I over heard onf of them say "It would be heaven on earth If there wasn't any chinese poison gas". Wow! That is much better than the conversations I usually have. I must have a cup of coffee there one day.

Wednesday, April 21, 2004

Today is sun shiny and warm. My spring insomnia is back because the days are so long my circadian rhythms are out of whack. It happens every year, and it takes about a week of sleepless nights before my head resets its clock. I stay up really late. I read. drink herbal teas and warm milk. toss and turn. lay down get. I do a lot of button clicking and read random people's blogs. I read an entry of a girl whose best friend committed suicide. The details were scarce. The entries seem directed at those already aware of the exact happenings and circumstances. It mainly expressed the normal confusion and standard reminiscences of a teenager, a child, who has met with what mortality actually entails. It happened to me when I was near her age. A friend died because of the same teenage foolishness that all teenagers practice but mostly avoid the repercussions due to luck and naivety. A car accident that left her dead, another passenger in a comma from which she would return with brain damage, and a driver with a monstrous amount of guilt and shame. I was out of town when it happen but returned before the funeral. It was the first funeral. I didn't want to go. I am a coward when it comes to anything which reminds me of mortality. I went. I didn't view the body. I had no desire to add to my few visual memories of her with that image. The tears didn't come when the family and friends gave their speeches through unsuppressible and stuttering sobs. They came when I saw the coffin lowered into the ground only then did it seem that person was gone and removed from us. I left with speaking to anyone. I wrote down everything I needed to say. In different words but they expressed the same confusion and reminiscences that I read in that anonymous girl's journal entry one thousand miles and several years removed from my experience. I anonymously left those pages upon the grave. I wanted someone else to read those words but I wanted no connection to them. I needed to express those very private thoughts but not be recognized as their source.

Friday, April 16, 2004

"Subvert the dominant paradigm." In my electronic wanderings the other day, I came across this website. It is a website devoted to public toilet literature. It was inaugurated by the author of the site with the phrase he saw on a stall wall. "Subvert the dominant paradigm." I too saw this exact phrase in the location he mentioned. Except I saw it years earlier with the addition, "What if that is the dominant paradigm?". Now, I doubt the janitor would only erase the riposte. So that means, the original author rewrote his toilet graffiti years later.

Maybe it was the janitor who was the author. He was an ex-philosophy student and one night while his mind was addled with bong inspiration he thought of his revolutionary quip. His one clever thought. Since academic journals require a 5000 word minimum, his only publishing opportunity is the toilet walls of his alma mater. Occasionally, his work is defaced by some insolent fool answering natures call. This requires him to clear the slate and reiterate his phrase. "Subvert the dominant paradigm."

Okay. That is too many entries about toilets. I will stop lest I get a reputation.

Once again two years late. I discovered blogging. At first I was apprehesive and even dismissive. I now understand the attraction. Writing your own blog is a tenth of the experience. It's almost like paying your dues. I started because I wanted to have a diary which I can access and ammend from anywhere. The real joy is the reading and the exchanges. The internet's version of 'hi. how you doin'?' as strangers pass in the street. The comments left on each other's page. BTW, I would like to have comments or a tagboard but I haven't found a reliable one with out pop ups. Any suggestions? Email me please.

Monday, April 12, 2004

Our secretary is an interesting woman. and by interesting I mean insane. Entering her office is a game of roulette. Sometimes the ball drops on 'enthusiastic extremely helpful joy upon the earth'. Other times all bets are lost and you get the devil. The woman spits fire and sulphur at any request you make.

"Can I get my payslip?"

"Why didn't you get it this morning like everyone else?"

"I... I..." I stutter, not really having an answer for her.

"The pile is over there. Get yourself." A crooked talon points past my shoulder.

"Thanks." I sheepishly offer to gain atonement for my transgression.

"Don't thank me." She snaps and returns to typing with ferocious speed.

I have developed a strategy to better my odds with this secretary. I will initiate the conversation while pretending to walk towards the copier. I start with a just a smile and a split second's worth of eye contact. This will earn me a warning in the form of tighten lips, thin red line like a paper cut and pure hate from mascara-ed lids. Or. I get a chatty greeting. Birds chirping and beams of light burning through the dissipating clouds. I then carefully submit my request which I carefully weave into friendly conversation from in front of the copier. I constantly gauge the barometer that may signal any sudden turn of weather. In her chattier moods she is an unrepentant gossip. It is almost vulgar the way she trades in inter-office politics and romances. Almost, because I too revel in this cattiness. Yes. dear readers, it is one of my vices. I am a terrible gossip. I am a nosy shit. It is not out of maliciousness that I enjoy these torrid tales of stolen kisses in the supply closet (Sadly this cliché is alive and well). I am just plain nosey. Yet, the brash way she dispenses these tid-bids of information simultaneously give me the sensation of revulsion and titillation. like licking a 9 volt.

Scene 34:

Our hero, secretary, and man from room 5.03 are in an office. Secretary is sitting at a desk in front of which are the other two actors. At the beginning of the scene man from room 5.03 enters.

Our hero:<<to man from room 5.03>> "Looking sharp today. The ladies will be chasing you."

Polite smiles all around. Man states his business to the secretary and leaves. Immediately, after the secretary turns to our hero and says in a conspiratorial tone.

Secretary: You know he's gay.

<end scene>

This is what I mean. There was no call for that. It made no difference to me. As if he was offended by my stupid joke mistakenly suggestion he would be interested in women chasing him. It was purely for the purpose of giving me that bit of gossip. When she said it I immediately thought, 'You, gossipy shit.', but I didn't complain. I quietly added that bit to my gossip scrapbook and went about my business. It's not as if I can use these tidbits as tender at the usual tea break gossip sessions. I avoid socialising at work as much as possible. I can't explain why exaclt I have an interest in second hand information concerning the same people from whom I avoid getting first hand auto-biographical information. Maybe those bytes of serendipitous information that says the most about a person. I'm not sure. I think the only acurate explanations is I too am a gossipy shit. Oh well.

Monday, April 05, 2004

"Beware the clean line.

Do not trust right angles or glossy paper.

Perfect is death. The lipless god knows this.

Perfection cannot change. It cannot grow.

Therefore, it can only be dead.

This is what they sell you in their empty cathedrals of mass consumption.
Spotless teens singing tunes written by paedophilic three piece suits.

Know them by the whites of their typesetting.

The only thing that belongs in shop windows is a brick and anger.

Go forth young ones and bury this death they vend and and let its rotting
perfection fecundate the off-centred, the home-made, the natural."


I have reproduced these words from the walls of a public toilet stall. It was
written in the most flowing calligraphic black ink. A healthy bowel movement has
been known to inspire a small amount of serenity in myself but nothing compared
to the epiphany this man experienced.

Saturday, April 03, 2004

I lived on the streets for a brief time. I was young enough for it to be more
adventure than the fearful time it should have been. The horror of seeing a
woman cut repeatedly on her arms as they fended off the boyfriend whose head had
been filled with dark chemical whispers did not fully bring its weight for me to
bear until years later when I could afford the luxury of reflection. I am still
not convinced I saw the wax-figure face of an overdose bundled like an Eskimo
baby in sheets and a sleeping bag. Even those terrible memories which tend to
haunt me between the time of closing my eyes and sleeping are not enough to
regret the life I've led. It is that life that fortifies me against taking the
pedestrian troubles of my current life too seriously. People at my office curse
the gods and their mother for the daily cruelties they must endure. These
afflictions include the adulterous boyfriend who is already abusing his second
chance or car payments that total more than their rent. perspective my dear
watson. perspective.

These people need suffering. Maybe suffering is too harsh. Maybe all it takes
is struggle. It's what gives us our humanity, no? Maybe that is why my
co-workers fabricate adversity to make themselves human again. To taste that
bitter but sustaining herb. Yet, it is an artificial struggle they have created
for themselves and is ultimately unsatisfying. nothing is satiated and
another difficulty must be fabricated. credit card debt? maybe. prescription
addiction? possibly. I keep to myself. nod when forced to listen to these
confessions pretending to be conversation. tattle to this computer.

Thursday, April 01, 2004

Things I saw this week that made me smile.

A statue of Wellington whose bronze boots and been painted to look like
rubber Wellingtons. Cute.

A woman with no teeth smoking.

At a flea market stall the radio was playing a song in which some young girl
was singing a syrupy sweet song about a boy and a woman in her seventies sang
along as she sorted her used book stall. Across from her a huge bald man in a
football strip sang along too.

An odd shaped boy with all his school folders covered in black and white
copies of NASA pictures of constellations.