Thursday, November 29, 2007
I do not have a girlfriend. I do not have bills to pay. I do not buy a lot of drugs or alcohol. I do not have a life. I'd say on average, I spend about $20, cash or debit, a week.
This leaves me with about $70 in discretionary spending money that I never use. I'm considering beginning a new habit, where when I want something I purchase it.
Understand, the desire-->purchase connection has been quite weak for me so far in my life. I have taken after my mother, who spends so much time researching her possible purchases and making sure she is getting the absolute best deal that she is to be commended whenever she purchases anything at all. My sister and father, on the other hand, do this weird thing where they see something they like and they exchange some money with a merchant to obtain the object of their desire.
Things I am considering buying:
1. A small neon sign/light up sign of some sort, to hang outside my door and plug into a light bulb socket to electrical outlet adapter in one of the phone booths, so when I come to my room I can just reach into the phone booth and flick the switch and people will know I'm home. All the neon signs I've found in casual searches have been for alcoholic beverages, which I guess would not be all bad if I could get one for Schlitz.
2. The Complete Works Of William Shakespeare. I'll buy this for about $20 any day now.
3. A grip exerciser. I think it would be a good way to burn off a lot of the excess energy I get sometimes, and also to strengthen my grip, obviously. The only problem with purchasing one on the online is that I do not know if it will be too difficult/too easy/uncomfortable. This purchase may need to be made in meatspace.
4. I don't know. Books?
I know I've gotta be the motive force around here to a certain extent.
I've been having an eventful college experience, I swear. It just isn't like high school, and high school is pretty much all I've blogged about.
College has been very odd for me so far. I haven't found any lifelong friends, or even space-filling semi-friends, people to hang out with until someone I have a real connection with comes along. I'm having some real problems with anxiety, and more often than not it manifests itself as a kind of manic, nervous energy. I feel and act kind of insane, which is a new thing for me. I think I've kind of cultivated an image as a lunatic (what with the furious one man dance parties, solitary night walks, and a tendency to look you in the eye and not break contact. Also I get twitchy sometimes) and while that can be fun (making people unsettled just by being around is an entertaining experience) I don't think it is for me. It's kind of exhilarating, but that just makes it more disturbing.
I am trying to settle down and get a little less nuts, and writing is one of the ways I do that. This is not the kind of writing I'm used to doing, though, not Manly Mustaches plays of wit and observational comedy. This is heavy madness and wine shit.
So I write letters (write me a letter please. 1820 Chicago Ave/Rm 4037/Evanston, IL 60201. You will make my day, and I will write you back.), and I write stories (my fiction production is way up, and for whatever reason, my astronomy class alone has inspired me to write about 6000 words), but I do not write blog posts.
Also, my excuse for the past few days is that my laptop's Internet (I try to always capitalize the word "Internet," as it refers to a specific place. I also capitalize "Universe." Is this correct?) connection is utterly fucked up. I'm actually getting way more done when I can't read webcomics all the time, and I'm getting by on the bare necessities by coming to the library (where I am right now), so I have not been extremely motivated to fix the problem. I might get around to it before I come home for Xmas, but I doubt it.
In the spirit of self improvement I think I will post here more. I'll give you a preview of posts to come, shall I?
1. What I want for Christmas. Pretty self explanatory. Actually, I have been having a very positive cash flow at college (over a hundred bucks a week from work study, with very few expenses [I do not have fun]), so I'll probably end up buying several of the items before you get a shot at them. Don't worry, I'll crow over my new purchases on the blog, probably.
2. A recent edit to my facebook profile has provoked some angry responses among my fan base. The contentious passage can be found under the "Favorite Films" heading, and reads as follows:
"...Star Wars (in descending order: V, IV, III, VI, II, I)..."
The placement of a prequel above a member of the original trilogy has angered some of my stodgier acquaintances.
While I am of course entitled to my opinion, in the spirit of good will towards men and all that nonsense I plan to hold a screening of both Revenge of the Sith and Return of the Jedi, after which I will post about my final judgment.
3. There are a couple of small, unlocked rooms, across the hall from my room, which used to be for pay phones. Now they are for nothing. I plan to change that. It will be a craft project, with Christmas lights and house paint and neon signs and maybe a Virgin Mary. I will keep you updated/ask for advice.
Monday, November 26, 2007
From the very start Bruce Lee was my inspiration. From what I've seen he was the fastest man this side of hell. In most of his movies his moves had to be slowed down because otherwise it all looked like a special effect.
Chuck Norris gets made fun of a lot, with all of the Chuck Norris jokes. But most people don't know that he was the international karate champion 8 years in a row.
These two are towards the top of the list.
Aside from his cheesy American made movies, Jackie Chan has made several masterpieces; where not only does he use his trickery but his martial arts skill. If you've never seen the Legend of the Drunken Master, you've yet to see the REAL Jackie Chan.
Then there's this guy... a true American Legend. Just kidding, I had to throw that in.
And now for my favorite: Tony Jaa. This guy has better stunts than Chan, better kicks than Bruce Lee, and on top of it all he is a world class gymnast. If you've never seen Ong Bak or the Protector I would highly recommend seeing them. Tony Jaa has my number one vote.
Bundy, I apologize for forgetting J.C. Van Damme, he's one of my favorites... much better than David Carradine. For a white guy from Brussels Belgium this guy has some really good flexibility. But then that's my problem with the guy; all he does is these really choreographed head kicks, he's not all that fast and his combinations leave much to be desired. But hey, that could just be the director.
Actually, my hatred levels are pretty neutral right now, because my seething anger towards Tom Brady is balanced out by my wholehearted support of American Gladiators, which I am informed will be making its triumphant return to network television at some point in the near future.
Although now that I think about it, the American Gladiators I know and love is the one I see on ESPN Classic when I'm staying in hotels. It has Nitro and Malibu and Sunny and everyone wears unitards and headgear. Now I fear that Malibu is dead of liver failure related to his steroid use and my beloved American Gladiators will be rendered unrecognizable by those nefarious coastal television fat cats who are bringing it back for money-related reasons. I have visions of high production values and non-roided out Gladiators, of advertisements for Mountain Dew plastered on the once proudly red, white, and blue foam-padded equipment, of hip new events which will not do justice to the campy intensity of the old show.
American Gladiators always used to be all "Malibu is a ridiculously over-muscled California surfer dude! Those tennis balls are going at over 100 mph! Look at the size of that fucking foam rubber ball!"
Those were the days. Now it's going to be all "The new Gladiators are named Xtreme and Sk8er and Grrrl! They are extreme but totally healthy and don't do any steroids! LISTEN TO THAT TOP 40 POP GO!"
I was going to give up but my hate fueled me OVER THE TOP on this post.
Wednesday, November 21, 2007
Tuesday, November 20, 2007
I was irrationally angry and had to take a half hour angry walk to walk off all my anger, but I did have some reasons for being so miffed at myself:
1. I've been having trouble finding things to do on campus, and this magazine was going to be one of my things. I had grand plans to be an editor and everything and start wars to increase circulation and have my last words be the name of childhood sled. But no. I played Star Wars video games instead. Now I'm the guy who missed the second meeting. Fuck.
2. This was the meeting where they were going to choose the name for the magazine. I sent in a list of my own, which I obviously would have been fine with, but the other potential names they listed in an email....well, I'll let you judge for yourself.
Northwestern Literary Review
Windows and Mirrors
...And Your Little Dog Too!
"...And Your Little Dog Too!" I shit you not. I think that might be the worst name possible, and I just know they chose it. If this magazine ends up being called "...And Your Little Dog Too!" I will not be able to join it. I will have to become its worst enemy.
Hindsight: Things are not as bad as I thought they were. I can still definitely be a major player in the magazine. People hate to take responsibility for anything, so I figure if I'm dedicated I should be able to run the place in a couple of years. Also, I heard from a guy I know who went that they did not decide on the name, they just held the preliminary vote, and votes will be accepted by email for the rest of the week. Plus, the guy voted for Solstice. I think I might too.
In conclusion, if your hate level is too low, just think about a magazine named "...And Your Little Dog Too!" and you'll be back on the Hate Train in no time. In fact...I am proud to introduce the Hate Train. For when you're just so pissed about something or someone that you just have to run a train on 'em. A Hate Train.
Rest assured, the Hate Train will only be deployed in the most hate-worthy of circumstances.
Monday, November 19, 2007
I have been feeling right on the edge of sick lately, and I am lame, so I decided to take it easy for the evening. I needed some exercise, though, to ensure good sleep, so I took a walk.
The weather was terrible, 35 degrees, rain, a steady 35-40 mph wind out of the east, coming off the lake. I bundled up in underarmour and my waterproof shell and walked out to the lakefill.
NU Primer: A few decades back, Northwestern decided to fill in a few acres of Lake Michigan and create an artificial little peninsula. Now it is like a very nice little park right on the lake, called the lakefill.
I was the only person in the whole lakefill. I walked down to the shore and watched the big breakers roll in and smash themselves against the rocks. The wind rocked me back on my heels. The sky was huge and dark and reached out to the distant horizon. I really like having the lake nearby.
Anyways, on my walk home I stopped into a classroom hall to warm up. I noticed a perfectly good-looking chair sitting in the hallway with a little sign taped to it that read "Please Dispose." The chair appeared to be nicer than my standard issue dorm chair, so I followed the note's request and lugged the seat back to my room.
I like my new chair. It is comfortable and has armrests. It is like a chair one would find in a hotel room. The arms and legs are a little loose, but I have temporarily solved that problem with superglue and duct tape. One day I will probably sit in it and it will collapse beneath me, but the I will get a good laugh out of it and go back to my old chair.
Sunday, November 18, 2007
I work at Menards in Baxter, I love it, people ask me how I'm doing and I tell them I am living the American dream. I was relaxing one fine afternoon after a terrific day at work when I got a phone call. I didn't recognize the number, but picked up anyway. There was a young lady on the other end of the line, she was a receptionist for a company named Vector. They sell knives and things of that matter. She asked me if i wanted to set up an interview and I agreed. A few days later, my girlfriend and I took a trip to St. Cloud for the interview... but destiny had other plans for me. Like an idiot I missed my turn and we found ourselves on a street with nothing but Asian restaurants. It was about 5:30 at this point and I was very hungry, we came upon a place I had heard about... it was called Sawaat Dee, which in Thai means "hello." I thought about asking for help finding Vector, but I gave into temptation and pulled the car over. It was one of the greatest meals of my life and I have no regrets. After the meal we decided to hit the mall (the interview was out of the question at this point). We walked around and came upon a shop on the outskirts of the mall, there wasn't anyone inside. The shop sold a vast variety of board games and puzzles. I was looking for a rubik's snake (an item which had eluded me for many a year). Again, another fruitless search. I kept looking around the shop and came across a game called GO. It was an oriental game with no real equal in the west. If you ever watch a Kung Fu movie that was supposed to have taken place a long time ago, they always play this game. I got home and read the instructions, it was pretty vague and didn't explain much; I forced my dad to play a game with me and it was actually pretty fun. I would encourage any skeptics to rush out and buy this game. Well, it took a long time for me to get to the point... and for this I apologize. So long for now, I look forward to next time... I wish to add a little spice to this blog, this blog will be very spicy.
Here is a brief tale of what I did over the weekend (Maxwell, make sure you tell this to your grandkids):
Turns out, colleges do not have knowledge bowl. Instead, they prescribe to this beast called Quiz Bowl. For those of you who may know (and not know), quiz bowl is radically different from KBowl:
a) Questions are longer (sometimes painfully so)
b) Individuals elements of the team have a chance at glory with tossups (the part where people buzz in individually if they know the answer. No conferring is permitted)
c) Occasionally, (as it happened this saturday) answers like Dire Straits come up.
This Saturday, the University of California, Berkeley was hosting the WIT (Western Invitational Tournament) and UCLA was sending a team to play. Unlike some other clubs like the University of Chicago, our club lacks funds and as a result we have to drive up for about 6-7 hours wading through the notorious L.A. traffic.
The drive back is not as bad as the drive up, except that two weeks ago (when we were returning from a similar tournament at Stanford) our car was pulled over and the driver duly ticketed for speeding some 13 miles over the posted limit.
The actual tournament is quite fun, all for the following reasons:
a)It is always fascinating to meet numerous characters, some of whom have been playing collegiate level quizbowl since 1999. (or in more abstract terms, eternity)
b)This is perhaps the only place where two totally unrelated things like Dire Straits and The Anatomy Lesson of Dr. Tulp turn up at the same time.
c)Individual top scorers and winning teams get "prizes", which usually comprise of well-worn used books like "The manual on exorcism" and "Catch-22".
This description of quizbowl brings me to today's real agenda: the introduction of
the first recipient of which is going to be UC Berkeley for arrogantly calling themselves California (or the even more annoying covariant CAL). Shame on them for ignoring the presence of other entities that are also named California or have that term included as a part of their name.
Further reading for those interested in the quirky realms of quizbowl: UCLA Lexicon
I missed posting last week due to a lack of hate, so I'm coming back this week with twice (or at least 1.5 times) the hate brought upon the world last time. So, without further ado, here's what I'm hatin' on this week.
- Monkeys- Normally I am a huge fan of primates, but there is some disturbing monkey related news coming out of India. In northeast India there is a case of monkeys on the lam. According to the article, "troupes of monkeys are out of control in India's northeast, stealing mobile phones and breaking into homes to steal soft drinks from refrigerators, lawmakers in the region have complained." These monkeys need to be stopped.
- Political Correctness- In Australia, they have worse problems than even a kangaroo on the lam. Santas in Sydney have been told not to say "ho ho ho", because "it may be offensive to women." According to the article, they have been told to say "ha ha ha" instead. Bitch please, "ho ho ho" is a Christmas (or I guess should say "Holiday") tradition, let the Santas speak.
- The Police- The police are at it again, this time in Italy, shooting, and killing, an Italian soccer fan and starting a riot. I'm not sure if any of the Italians read this blog, but this is sad news coming from the land of our Italian brethren. Fuck tha police.
- Minnesota Sports- Every Minnesota sports team that matters (sorry Wild, I'm not a hockey fan) is terrible this year. The Vikings are trash, the Timberwolves are terrible, and Gopher football probably couldn't even beat the Warriors. The only thing Minnesota had going for it was Adrian Peterson, but now he's injured.
That's it for today, I'm pleased I was able to work two NWA videos into the post, I'll be back next week with more hate. Just remember, if you're feeling hate inside you don't hesitate to express yourself (sorry, I had to put in one more).
Thursday, November 15, 2007
Diogenes was an ancient Greek philosopher. He thought that the people of Greece were weak-minded fools who lived in needless luxury, and in addition to loudly telling them so, he practiced what he preached. He lived his life in the simplest way possible, wearing rags, sleeping in a broken pot, urinating (and masturbating) in pubic, and begging food off of strangers. Diogenes destroyed one of his only possessions, a small wooden bowl for holding water, when he saw a beggar drinking from his cupped hands.
People said he lived like a dog, and he proudly accepted the comparison. Dogs live their lives honestly and straightforwardly, barking, shitting, and sleeping when and where they felt like it. Basically, they're the haters of the animal kingdom. The name of his school of philosophy, cynicism, is derived from the Greek word for dog.
Diogenes was the disciple of the founder of cynicism, Antisthenes. Antisthenes was, as you might expect of the founder of cynicism, a total dick, and he subjected Diogenes to some nasty initiation ordeals before accepting him as a student (Brad Pitt's browbeating torments of recruits in Fight Club were reportedly inspired by Anisthenes' tactics). Diogenes took it all in stride and went on to far surpass his master in fame.
28: Stone Cold Hater
Sometimes he would wander the streets in the day, carrying a burning torch and holding it up to people's faces. When they asked him what he was doing, he would say "I am looking for an honest man." Needless to say, he never found one who fulfilled his requirements.
One mark of a great hater is a willingness to keep it real, even when faced with very real possibility of getting your ass beat/killed. When Alexander the Great was at the peak of his power--that is, when he was the ruler of the majority of the known world--he came to Corinth to meet the famous philosopher. He found Diogenes, sprawled in the sun, and asked him if there was anything he could do for him. Diogenes replied "Stand out of my sunlight." This was to the most powerful man in the world, a man who could have had Diogenes killed (or fucking killed him himself, right there) on a whim. This is a guy lying on the street in the USSR, and Stalin walks up to him and says "Can I do anything for you?" and the guy on the street replies "Yeah, go fuck yourself."
But Diogenes kept it real. Ice. Fucking. Cold.
Alexander was impressed, and reportedly said "If I were not Alexander, then I should wish to be Diogenes." Alexander got owned, but he recognized a genuine hater, and gave Diogenes some respect.
I just read about another version of their meeting on Wikipedia, where Alexander comes upon Diogenes picking through a pile of human bones. Alexander asks him what he's doing, and the philosopher replies "I am searching for the bones of your father but cannot distinguish them from those of a slave." I think that one might be even more badass.
Diogenes loved to hate on people who obsessed over how they would be buried, because after they died, they were going to fucking dead, so why should they care what happens to the meat? When he died, he left instructions that his body be thrown outside the city walls so wild animals could feast upon his flesh.
Hardcore to the end.
Wednesday, November 14, 2007
As some may know (probably not many because I come off as an uncultured republican bastard), I am an ENORMOUS fan of Phantom of the Opera. The story it tells and the themes inherent in every song are too good to be true. And the music is to die for. Andrew Lloyd Webber surely is a musical genius. I recommend picking up the live original London recording featuring Michael Crawford, Sarah Brightman and Steve Barton if you have the means.
Anyway, so I'm basically fucking obessed with this musical, right? Well, the folks and Ms. Maggie Freiday are heading out to Baltimore this Thanksgiving to chill with me and visit some relatives. Ms. Freiday also happens to be a PTO fan, by the way.
So, since PTO is playing on Broadway, only 2.5 hours away by train, I figured it would be very nice to see this production with my paramour. At $111.50 a piece for front center mezzanine seats, it was going to be awesome and surely the experience of a lifetime.
But then came Amtrak.....250 FUCKING DOLLARS ROUND TRIP FOR ONE TICKET! Are you kidding me? This is enough to make me turn into a fuck-the-government libertarian asshole. How do those bastards get off charging that much money for a ride on a shitty train? I am pissed. Granted it is Thanksgiving weekend, but fuck....Amtrak ruined my life.
But this cheered me up. Antonio Banderas can actually sing....check out this performance he did with Sarah Brightman....and check out the heels on his shoes:
Tuesday, November 13, 2007
While there I will eat:
1. Pasta with Parmesan and nutritional yeast.
3. mashed potatoes
5. a sharp cheddar cheese sandwich with corn chips
College is not being satisfying the same way high school was sometimes.
I talked to Josh Johnson today, he said he's got some sweet Menard's posts brewing, but he's got to get to his girlfriend's house before he can post them, as he does not have the Interweb at his dad's place. Shocking, I know. Josh Johnson is willing to overcome great barriers to complain about Menard's on the web.
I forgot to listen to Hannah Burchill's Goddamned Radio Program again today. Fuck.
Sunday, November 11, 2007
I was in downtown Evanston (the first ring Chicago suburb of about 70,000 where Northwestern is located) in a restaurant (there are a shitload of restaurants in Evanston) with Kurt.
It was free day, or something, and they were giving out popcorn chicken and turkey bagel sandwiches. The dude making the sandwiches was like a slightly Hispanic version of Tirth. It was extremely weird. He gave Kurt and me some popcorn chicken, which was delicious, and then a turkey sandwich on a garlic bagel with extra garlic.
A little later Sam Walker showed up, and I told him there was a food giveaway. He got excited and went and got a turkey bagel sandwich from Hispanic-Tirth. I wanted another sandwich so I went to tell Tirth, but he was super-busy. He saw me though, over the crowd of people demanding sandwiches, and gave me a little head nod so I knew he knew.
I kept coming back at the wrong time for my sandwich and Tirth was getting really exasperated. I ran into my sister, Maya, and my cousin Amelia and gave them hugs, but they seemed extremely ambivalent about my being there.
Someone delivered me a note from Tirth that said something like "Max if you are done orbiting the Earth perhaps you can orbit the Universe!" I do not understand it. It seems kind of like an insult Tirth would use? In any case, I was extremely amused and happy that my sandwich was ready. I went up to the counter and while Tirth made the sandwich Sam and I talked about all the flavors which went into the turkey garlic bagel sandwich. There were half-eaten sandwiches all over the place.
I think I woke up before I got to eat the second one.
Friday, November 9, 2007
I have another issue for the blog's consideration:
A certain Mr. Josh Johnson has petitioned for blog membership.
I personally support Mr. Johnson's request. Dude can tell a funny story. Plus, I think he would add a unique viewpoint to the blog.
Questions/Comments in comments for this thread.
Thursday, November 8, 2007
Those were the good old days. The Nuclear Balloon Arrows were on the top of the game, emus were immensely popular (remember that trip to the emu farm, Max, that was classic), a war raged between the Momsons and Crohnsons, and Josh Johnson didn't call me at 3:00 in the morning.
Wednesday, November 7, 2007
I kind of pushed this one to the edge of reason. At this point it's not really that useful as a reference. It's just got too much information to be properly accessed.
...and the backside:
Monday, November 5, 2007
This dude was hardcore. He was a 6'3" escaped slave who made a living telling white people how horrible they were.
When he was a slave, he earned a reputation for being difficult. At 16, he was sold to a farmer with a reputation as a "slave breaker." So what did Freddy D do? He beat the shit out of the guy. Problem solved.
He loved to hate on the hypocritical religious zealots of the South. Just check the quotes:
"I assert most unhesitatingly, that the religion of the South is a mere covering for the most horrid crimes - a justifier of the most appalling barbarity, a sanctifier of the most hateful frauds, and a dark shelter under which the darkest, foulest, grossest, and most infernal deeds of slaveholders find the strongest protection."
"I prayed for twenty years but received no answer until I prayed with my legs."
"Once, in a heated controversy over the wisdom of giving the Bible to slaves, he asserted that it would be 'infinitely better to send them a pocket compass and a pistol.'"
When Douglass got sick of being a slave, he dressed up as a sailor, forged himself some papers, and rode the train up north.
At Abraham Lincoln's funeral, the dude who was giving the eulogy sucked. Douglass was in the crowd, and he had such a mad reputation as a public speaker that the crowd called for him to speak. Douglass got up and delivered, on the spot, an amazing eulogy for the fallen President. Hardcore.
A final quote, just for Bundy:
"I am a Republican, a black, dyed in the wool Republican, and I never intend to belong to any other party than the party of freedom and progress."
Sunday, November 4, 2007
Friday, November 2, 2007
Things I'm hatin' on this week.
- Not having administrative privileges- I was going to add links and maybe change the color scheme a little, but I guess it will have to wait for now.
- Paumbert Livingston- If you have a Facebook account, you gotta read some of his posts here, in one of the many Stephen Colbert groups. He's a straight-up playa hater, and his logic makes absolutely no sense.
- Precalc Homework- It just takes way too long to do.
- The South Carolina Democratic Party- I know Colbert wasn't serious about running for president, but he paid the fees and did everything necessary to get on the ballot. I was really hoping to see him in one of the Democratic debates, that would have been, quite possibly, the greatest moment in TV history. As an undecided voter, I might vote Republican in '08 just to stick it to those bastards.
- Shaving- No Shave November is upon us, and I am participating once again.