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Went to the dentist today. A dental clinic, actually- very good, very reputable, very cheap, very thorough. This is the first time in almost 4 years that I've been to a dentist- the last time being the whole Halcion Incident, which was noteworthy but costly. Since the Halcion Incident I have not been able to continue with the rehabilitation of my teeth- therefore, they have continued to decay and literally fall apart, not just the teeth experiencing decalcification, but pretty much every tooth in my mouth now has the beginnings of decay/cavaties.

Worse than being generally bad news for my health, this is extremely bad news for my pocket. And this is also where the clinic shines as my hero, my Knight in Shining Armor (tm).

The four decalcified teeth are too far gone for veneers to do any good, they must now be capped. This procedure, in a "normal" dentist's office, would cost upwards of $4,000. The clinic will charge me $880- quite a discount, eh? That's actually really good news. The only problem is that my income as a bouncer will not really supplement that. I will either have to get a new job, a second job or seek the financial assistance of my parents. I will, doubtless, pay my parents back if they agree to help with the costs, but I am fairly certain that I cannot afford this on my own, not right now. Certainly not on my meager income.

The rest of my work-up is relatively easy for me to manage financially. And I'm actually very eager to get it started. I'm just really, really, really curious to see how I'm going to pay for the more expensive aspect of the work, the caps.

My teeth are brittle and fragile. I do not smile half as much as I would like to. I feel that the condition of my teeth (and my smile) has a significant impact on both my dating life and my personal self-image. Getting those four teeth fixed is my top priority- the sooner the better.

This is part of the reason I have moved back into the cabin, the glorified and insulated tool shed. It costs a negligible amount of money to live there- the money saved on rent is money I can use to get my teeth fixed. The peace and quiet, while extremely nice, is actually my secondary motivation for moving there.

Getting these teeth fixed will also require, more than the money, a complete and total paradigm shift in my living/eating/health habits. I will have to smoke less, I will have to consume less coffee and Sprite, I will have to eat less fast-food. I will have to brush three times a day instead of the "normal" once a day that most everyone else is prone to. I will have to floss more regularly. I will have to take damn fine care of my teeth. If I don't, then they will need to be removed completely and replaced with "falsies"- a fate that I would like to avoid at all costs.

You should lose your teeth only once in life.

Born of 2 Latin terms (see the eviscerate w/u), one meaning out, the other meaning guts, the word Eviscerate rolls off the tongue like a buttermilk toffee does when you laugh too hard. Perhaps it does not qualify as onomatopoeia, but the word, for me at least, closely imitates the sound a very sharp straight razor being drawn across the belly of an unsuspecting pedestrian.

There is a Monty Pythonesque quality to the word as well. If you close your eyes, you can almost see John Cleese saying it, conceivably while gutting Terry Jones. It is a maddening word, one used all to seldom in modern conversation.

’Evisceration’ is a word for all ages and all peoples, but more specifically, Evil Supervillains.

It is such a beautifully expressive term, is it not?

(This daylog was plundered from my nuked 'Evisceration is a beautifully expressive word' w/u.)

This is partial fiction.

Some of it happened.
Some of it didn't.

I'll leave it up to you to determine what you accept as real or dismiss as lies.

It's Monday afternoon. Having skipped a college class that I really can't be bothered with, I find myself wandering around Glasgow in search of something that isn't mind numbingly dull.

Twenty minutes later I give up.

Everyone around me has something to do. They're working, shopping, meeting people, finishing lunch. I find myself growing jealous of them and their abundant activities. I need something to do.

I consider buying a paper and sitting out the next few hours on one of the city's fine benches, but the miniscule amount of change in my pocket mocks me. What's the point of being a educated, literate, well informed person when even a piss poor tabloid costs 20p? Damn money hungry corporate media.

I make a mental note to have something unfortunate happen to Rupert Murdoch.

I decide to call up my buddies, many of whom owe me money, or at least a drink. Trust me, there's no better way to spend a Monday than pleasantly intoxicated. Damn it, though! Fate conspires against me. Everyone I know is in a god damned lecture. They're struggling to become educated, to make themselves as attractive as possible when they jump on the career ladder and start pimping themselves to corporate vultures. Don't they know it's all futile? Haven't they read the million and one nodes about Fight Club?

There's only one thing left to do - waste some time. I figure that I've already wasted enough of my own for one day and now it's time to waste somebody else's. Spotting a franchise food outlet, I enter. My prey is behind the counter. I approach, smiling to lull him into a false sense of security. His name tag proclaims that he is Darryl, purveyor of delicious hot snacks and refreshing ice cold drinks. He asks what I would like.

A list of ingredients for all your products, please.

He looks confused for a moment. He tries to decide whether I'm joking or not. Unable to make up his mind, he informs me that he'll have to go and speak to the manager.

I am delighted. I had felt a slight twinge of guilt directing my evil intentions towards this poor subordinate who's probably only doing this so he can afford an XBox. The manager, on the other hand, presents a perfectly legitimate target. Workers, arise! Overthrow the bosses in bloody revolution!

The manager's name tag is silver coloured plastic. Every other employee has a bronze name tag. I realise that I am dealing with no mere mortal. He smiles and addresses me informally. He wants to help. The company wants to help. The company wants to be my friend.

I repeat my demands. A list of all the ingredients that you use in your food, if you please.

The smile holds. He asks me to hold on for a minute while he calls up head office. Sheer joy floods my brain. Now I'm wasting the manager's time and the time of one of the sweatshop monkeys answering telephones in a warehouse out in whatever country has cheap enough labour rates. Fight the Power! Fight the Power!

I'm asked for my address I write it down. I'm told that I will receive information as soon as possible. In all probability, the "information" will take the shape of a form letter apologising for the fact that the information I requested is not available.


It's Friday morning. I am perplexed. A fairly thick envelope has thudded through my letter box. It bears the familiar logo of the fast food company.

It turns out that the burger place only actually sells about thirty different products, and the majority of them are just variations on other items. Cheeseburgers, for example, are available as double cheeseburgers, or, with the addition of an extra piece of bread and a dash of salad, as the company's Flagship Sandwich.

I skip the boring pages and get to the good stuff - E numbers. These are the artificial additives used to avoid the time and expense involved in making actual good food. The list is several pages long. Google helps me expand on the sparse information provided.

E904 - Liquid secreted by the Indian lac insect. Used on glazed products to add to the shine. Other applications include woodwork and taxidermy.

E445 - Extract from pine chips. Used in fizzy drinks containing fruit to stabilise the product.

E170 - Chalk. Used to make bread based products look more white.

E215 - Sodium ethyl p-hydroxybenzoate. Used as a preservative. A World Health Organisation study conducted on laboratory animals found this substance to have a local anesthetic effect comparable to that of cocaine.

Mmm... burger. Hey, hey dude, I can't feel my face...

Perhaps the most disturbing item on the list is:

E120 - Cochineal. Extracted from baked insects. Used as a colouring agent in meat products.

I imagine a massive tray full of bugs sliding into an industrial oven. In the scorching heat, spindled legs twist and twich, bodily fluids ooze and evaporate. Little black pinpoints of eyes melt out of smouldering sockets.

There's something in here that I can't quite put my finger on. It's revolting, yes, but there's a certain black humour in there somewhere. People all around the world are paying money and taking pleasure in eating this stuff. They're buying into slick advertising campaigns. They're forming brand loyalty to McDonald's, to Burger King, to KFC, and in return the corporations have them eating bugs.

I'm just glad that I gave up eating the shit when I was in high school.

It seems to me that everytime I get really happy with my surroudings and life, it just goes down the drain. I hate having to constantly worry about whether or not the next problem that comes my way will just make me go into complete insanity. I'm 16! Why should I have to go through this stuff? I shouldn't be getting depressed over money or where my next meal will come from. I should be worrying about where I'm going to hang out tonight.

School doesn't make it any better. Since I've changed from the Richmond Public School system to Henrico's, my grades have been crap! I was in the National Junior and Japanese Honor Society's. I was making A's and B's, now I get Average Joe C's. I'm not average at all!

It's so hard not to just break down and cry in the middle of the day. Sometimes, at night I can't get to sleep because the tears have flooded my pillow and the wetness stings my cheek. I don't have anyone that I think will be able to understand where I'm coming from. My mother will just say that God will make a way and all that stuff, but why does God let these things happen to me if he loves me so much? I shouldn't be anticipating death or even thinking about when my sweet date with Death will come and he'll buy my ticket to wherever I'm supposed to go.

Long story short, I was shoveling my driveway this morning, when some guy across the street peeked his head out his front door and started staring at me. What, you've never seen a woman shovel snow before? I thought to myself as I furiously hacked at the hardened snowdrift with my flimsy plastic snow shovel. Then he whistled, not like a catcall, just more like a whistle to get someone's attention. Leave me alone! Can't you see I'm busy? I muttered under my breath as I flashed a friendly smile and waved. I was busy, but I didn't want to be rude. Annoying neighbor guy popped his head back in his house and returned a few minutes later with a bag of trash to throw out. Again, he stared at me as I worked up a sweat throwing snow around. Now, this is getting annoying!! I ignored him.

So then the guy went back inside and returned wearing a coat. "Hey, you need some help?" he shouted as he crossed the street. "Sure!" Oh my!! I didn't just say that, did I? "Where's your shovel?" I asked. Maybe I can get out of this! "I ain't got one," he eloquently stated as he kicked a few chunks of snow around. OK. He looks harmless. So, I handed him my shovel. And, of course, he started a conversation.

him: "So, how old are you?"
me: I know where this is going!! Grr! I stopped being jail bait two years ago!!"Nineteen."
him: "19! You don't look 19! You look much younger than that!"
me: So you frequently hit on 15 year old girls? "Yeah, I know."
him: "So what do you do for a living?"
me: I'm a stripper! You like that!?!"I'm a mother." Ha! So there!
him: "A mother, huh? I work up at John Morrell."
He stopped shoveling for a moment and looked at me as if he expected me to say something.
What do you want? A cookie? I smiled innocently.
him: "You married?"
me: "Happily."
*A short pause.*
him: "So where your husband while you out shoveling this snow?"
me: "He had a late night last night. He's watching the baby. Plus, he shoveled yesterday."
him: "You have any sisters, or cousins or anythin'?"
me: "Only four brothers."
him: "Ha! Hey! I know how that goes! You got it rough!" He shouted with surprise. "Four brothers! Heh!" I'm sure he's imagining four brawny Aryan guys cornering him with maniacal grins. Ironically, my oldest brother is 20, and certainly not the protective type. My husband on the other hand...
me: "You know, I think my car can fit through that gap now."
him: "You think so?" He replies as he scrapes snow off the cement.

With occurrences like this (no, it's not the first time this has happened), it's no wonder I dislike shoveling snow.

Today was a bit of an unusual day for me.

First of all, last night around 3 AM (technically today) my wife woke me up needing some water. She is pregnant so of course I obliged. I removed my CPAP mask, went to the kitchen, got her water and returned. When I tried to go back to sleep, I had an epiphany of sorts.

This happens to me often when I'm trying to either get to sleep or get back to it: my mind starts crunching on all sorts of things: important things like finances and money and non-important things like how many years the TV show Charles in Charge lasted. The fact is, my brain hates me and likes to see me suffer as I try to keep from falling asleep in front of my computer at the office and not get in trouble.

Anyhoo, I came to the conclusion that I could not afford daycare for my future baby working where I do now. It just wasn't going to happen no matter how I worked it. All my research had indicated that daycare was going to cost at least $500 a month. You could do it for less but you might also get people who like to shake your babies for fun and play raquetball with them. I decided that I was going to have a chat with my neighbor, a woman (part of a family of five: her, husband, two sons, daughter, all gamers and computer geeks) who knows how to build computers. On Super Bowl Sunday we'd discussed building a server, as it was the only thing she hadn't tried to do as far as creating a system. I'd said I'd be interested in getting in on that action. Then I missed Janet Jackson's boob, turned away at the wrong second. Don't worry, somebody emailed me a pic later.

Since I have been working as a pro web designer for this particular company since 1999, I have gotten to know kind of how these joints are run and I know design and necessary software like Photoshop and Dreamweaver. Since she knows how to build computers, with what she knows and what I know, and the people we both know, I figured it just might work; if we pooled our resources, we could make it happen. I even had come up with a name for the business and a logo before I finally got back to sleep, about 20 minutes before my alarm went off.

I was tired at work, sure, but I kept myself awake by mostly chatting with somebody who knew how to build networks, not actually getting a whole lot of work accomplished (don't worry, I looked busy every time the boss whizzed by). Also, the big container of coffee helped, too. And, another thing, I was happy because last night my hockey team, the St. Louis Blues won for the first time in nine games. Anyway, after that productive conversation fizzled out I turned to stimulating myself via reading news on CNN and Yahoo. Another strange thing about the day was all the weird stuff in the news. There was the baby with two heads. Then there was that disease in the Sudan where kids nodded to death at the sight of food. They found that missing Florida girl dead, which made me want to blow a gasket. Oh, and there was also an article about weird deaths of elderly women in Shelby, North Carolina.

(http://www.cnn.com/2004/US/South/02/06/mystery.deaths.ap/index.html)

After work, where'd I'd accomplished about 5 hours worth of work in 8, I went home and talked to my nieghbor. It was a very productive discussion and hopefully this thing I thought of early this moring will come to fruition.

I have see the future, and it is good.

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