Observations for the day:

- A sad recurrent pattern in my life that involves going to sleep earlier than I want to, so I can get up earlier than I want to. Going to sleep by 2 or so in the AM, when I finally peel myself from the PS2 or Julia or whatever else may have me temporarily convinced that it is better than sleep. Starting to wake up around 4, presentable and the next town over by 5. Taking an afternoon nap, waking up at 10 to 6 via ringing phone, needing to locate a pair of work boots and go work elsewhere, braving the tail end of rush hour... when this phone woke me up I saw the clock and it took a good two minutes to register with me that this was PM we were dealing with and not AM...

- On a totally unrelated note, I can tell when I've been online more often by the decreased amount of spam in my inbox upon logon.

- If you need to go to sleep anytime soon, stay the fuck away from e2.

I love how my July 19, 2004 writeup, which is little more than a rant about how stupid this apartment is laid out, gets significantly more favorable votes than my July 18, 2004 writeup, which was a far more serious and honest piece. I hate to sound melodramatic, but this is another data point in support of my theory that the universe really thinks I'm a bag of shit and that people really don't want to listen anymore (and perhaps never did).

Since I'm so damned boring, I'll go back to whining about the ex-wife some more. People seem to like that crap.

She's owned the Corvette for over a week now. She still hasn't gone to the DMV to register it. She still hasn't had it smogged. She still hasn't taken it to a mechanic to have it inspected and have the alternator repaired. She still hasn't called her insurance agent to notify them of the purchase.

She is falling back into the same predictable pattern she maintained while we were married. It's part of the reason why we separated in the first place -- she's fucking lazy. I refuse to be convinced that she honestly "can't" do the things she claims she can't do. I remain convinced that she "won't" do them. She went from work today straight to the doctor's office for her continuing physical therapy from the accident. While there, she forgot/chose not to get the address and directions to the pharmacy where her new prescriptions are filled. She just figured I could look it up. She was close to Costco at this point (less than a mile away from it), but came back home to ask me if I "wanted" to go to Costco with her instead of just doing it herself. She never flat out tells me to do something; she always asks in that fucking obnoxious way that secretly says "if you say 'no' I will kill you."

Her chief complaint was she was tired. Never mind that she had to walk around Costco anyway, that it was her money being spent, and that she drove home from physical therapy anyway, nope, she's too tired to drive.

She still defers to me in irritating ways. She continues to try it even though I don't play along anymore. It's stupid, to the point that even complete strangers can see what's going on. Even though I give absolutely no signs whatsoever to indicate I want to lead or control anything, she will still just literally stand there in the middle of Costco waiting for me to decide what to buy. Even though she specified and wrote the shopping list, she waits for me to decide what to buy. She seems genuinely confused that I don't do that anymore, and very angry at me that I have the nerve to make her think for herself. She still wants me to run her life, do everything for her, and support her. The pressure to look for work is starting.

I realized today that she doesn't want to help me, or assist me in finding the help I need. There's nothing in it for her. If I'm actually treated and made better, I might just go off on my own again. She's already said repeatedly "please don't leave me again, I don't want to be alone." She seems just fine with letting me sit here all day and all night in this apartment, rotting away and becoming more and more depressed. That suits her needs well -- the more depressed and sad and miserable and lonely I am, the less likely I am to fight her or leave.

What she doesn't realize, though, is that I'm slowly building up enough strength to try suicide again. I've already figured out what to do (and it doesn't involve pills, alcohol, rubber bands, or plastic bags this time). I almost found the strength today, but fell short when the fucking cell phone rang. It was another debt collector (I don't answer those calls anymore, but it was still distracting).

Even with all my friends and family gone, and even under this bitch's iron fists, I will someday find the strength and means to escape this nightmare.

Offtopic: One more writeup to go 'till I hit the big 100 here on E2. Woot.

Goddamn you, Texas!!

Alright, maybe I started that in the wrong place.
Let's try this again.

I. Heart. Noders.

Everyone who knows noders knows that internoder relations stretch from nate's first few lines of code to the first title on the New Writeups list. There's something about us- the "noder spark," as dann later dubbed it. Everything is a Community. Everything is a Family. And that's part of what makes so many nodermeets so amazing... there's a strange charm in getting to know someone through their words and then deciphering them face to face. A cosmic connection, perhaps... but it's a rare occasion to meet a noder that you truly, in every respect, dislike. In the case of this particular pile of kittens, exactly the opposite turned out to be.

I'll give ya To Be Continued...

...When it became apparent that there was no way we were going to make it back to NYC at an hour early enough to get pint to work or Dann and Siobhan back on the road with any hope of substantial progress in their cross-country trip, we offered them our hospitality and raucous company for the night (and why not? They's kickass folk!). They accepted, and we clamored down the highway and through the ridiculously congested turnpike traffic in Dann's Honda, Harvey.

(/me would like to mention that being behind the wheel again after living car-less for a year in New York City was... AWESOME.)

It's quite difficult to expound upon the weekend's subsequent events without seriously exceeding the acceptable length of a daylog, playing the +4 Rod of Infinite Sap, and frankly, giving out Too damn Much Information... but let's just say that pint and I were more than overjoyed when they decided to stay another night.

After another day of impeccable company, singing at the top of our lungs, ubergeeking (as in, all four of our computers networked, sitting within inches of one another shooting IM's three ways, and more than occasionally cracking up and simultaneously typing LOL), cheap Mexican food, late-night drives and later-night diners, too many cigarettes and never enough snuggling, the time came for them to leave. Damn responsibility and what not.

This was painful. Toting their bags, we walked a block to the car. Waiting on the windshield were three parking tickets- I guess we lost track of time. (Dann later totaled them to almost three hundred dollars... and he didn't mind as much as he probably should have.)

We pointed them in the direction of the Holland Tunnel and said our goodbyes. Hugs and kisses and two deliciously unfortunate couples on Second Avenue. Dann and Siobhan drove off. Pint went to work. And I was left at home alone.

I walked up the stairs to our tiny apartment, sat down at the computer, lit a cigarette and logged into E2. At the top of the C! list was Sleeping with someone. Ouch.

Pint called me over his break; I answered with a rather harried:

"What the FUCK happened this weekend?!?"
Pint: "Dude, you stole my line!"
Me: "So you say mine!"
Pint: "I have nooooo idea..."
We stammered at each other for a few minutes, and then...
Pint:"... but i think everyone in our apartment... just fell head-over-heels in love."
Me: "Yeah... I think that's exactly what happened."

Me: "Hot damn."

So now we're back to where I started. Texas.

He lives in Texas, and that... is awfully far from here. Far from home. I'm not sure when I'll see him again, but I'm very much looking forward to that moment.

She is coming back to New York in a week or so to spend the rest of her time in the States with pint.

I've said it before and I'll say it again: I. Heart. Noders.

We have no idea how this is going to work out... but we've got a good feeling.

Wish us luck.

Here is a short account of my recent holiday. Ihave tentatively titled it "Sore feet, bruised knackers, AIDS clinics, crazy horses and stupid police officers - a story of bad luck on holiday!" I wouldn't normally write something about my holidays but so much happened to me I thought I'd inflict it on everyone. (A problem shared etc.)

First some back-story: me, my girlfriend and another couple have been planning to go away to El Arenal, Majorca for a bloody long time! We talked about it for a few months and then in february we bought plane tickets and booked the time off work. With me so far? Suffice it to say, I've been looking forward to this holiday!

Problems started on the first night, we went out for a couple of drinks. Feeling particularly care free that night, I decided it would be a good idea to wear my brand new never been worn (hence not broken in) flip flops. Many drinks and some dancing gave me a huge blister between my toes that meant I had to walk home bare foot. This wasn't much of a problem, Mallorca is a warm island, everywhere is paved (apart from the beach) and if I really did need to wear something on my feet, I could always resort to plasters.

The next thing to happen was a little more unexpected. I got a voice mail from my landlord back in the UK asking if I could contact him ASAP because the Police had raided my flat by mistake. In the process they had destroyed the door and had it replaced, including the lock! Would I be so kind as to contact them to arrange delivery of the keys? Oh joy.

On the weekend, we hired a car and went to the north of the island to sample the scenery and the different beaches. It was a glorious day, the sun was shining, there was a light breeze and we were all having a great time. When we passed a riding stables on the way home, how could we refuse? We immediately pulled in and asked if we could do an hours trek. No problem they said and put us all on horses. At this point I feel it would be appropriate to tell you that all I was wearing at the time was a T-Shirt, swimming shorts and my trusty flip flops (with plaster and several days worth of healing). I should also tell you that at this point, I had only ever been on the back of a horse once before on a very sedate and short trek in the Kefalonian mountains. This riding stable's idea of training consisted of "You ride? No? When trot, move up-down up-down." I am NOT having you on!! Things were alright for the first 10 minutes but I was unable to trot, more because of my footwear than lack of ability. Things came to a head when the horse started making funny loud breathing sounds and backing up. At this point the "instructor" told me to gently get off the horse so we could swap. Fine by me! She very kindly adjusted the stirrups on the new horse so that I could put more weight on them without slipping (due to the inappropriate footwear). Now I was able to trot in a limited fashion. :) This is when I realised that swim shorts were also inappropriate. The lack of supportive underwear meant a rather important and particularly sensitive portion of my anatomy was constantly knocking against the saddle. This combined with the fact that I had to jam my feet into the stirrups to stay on my new, friskier, horse caused some pain which I just had to grin and bare while I tried to keep up with the others. Getting off the horse revealed gouges on both my ankles and on the side of my right foot where there had been rubbing. I'm just glad I didn't have to walk home!

At this point I was pretty happy, things had happened to me, chances were that nothing else would. I could just enjoy myself. So imagine my suprise when I managed to find the only syringe on a 5 mile stretch of beach. With my foot. By the pointy end! I spent the next 2 hours in hospital sweating away my worries. The doctor that saw me (with his rusty but still very good english) he tried to reasure me told me to come back in the morning for the results of my HIV test and gave me 2 Combivir to be taken 12 hours apart. When I got back to the apartment, I popped the first pill. I normally don't like taking pills so I made damn sure that I kept this one down! The doc hadn't said anything about alcohol so I didn't have any that night. :-( They say that one of the side effects of Combivir is nausea, from experience I would say it's more accurate to say it feels like you have a hangover without having got drunk first. I also wasn't happy about getting up at 5 the following morning to take the next pill.
When I returned to the hospital I taken in to the AIDS clinic where a nurse explained the following things:

  1. The HIV virus is very simple and weak.
  2. It takes around 20 to 30 minutes for it to die outside of the body.
  3. Given the fact that the needle had been on the beach through the night, through the morning and into the early afternoon chances are that the combination of open air, salty surroundings and a good few hours of baking under the midday sun killed off the little buggers.
  4. It was still necessary to get Hepatitis B shots so would I kindly drop my pants for the immunoglobin part.

Remember my poor front door, transformed into kindling by the ever helpful Police? Remember how we had to arrange for delivery of the keys? Well we did arrange, we arranged for the keys to be put in our post box (which we still had the key to) and that if there were any problems then call us. Guess what. When we finally got home, opened up the post box and looked inside, you know what we found? 2 weeks of unopened post and a note from the local police telling us to contact them to arrange delivery of the keys. /me is not happy. I called them up and politely as I could, explained the situation and asked if they could send the keys to us ASAP. They couldn't, we had to go to the police station to collect them. /me is very unhappy right now. I have to admit though, when I finally got there they were very apologetic and explained everything too me. At this point I was satisfied, but the final insult was to come. When we arrived back at the flat, a full 2 hours after we got there the first time, tried the key and it didn't work. A quick call to the police and another 2 hours later, our complimentary locksmith let us in.

I went to the doctors the next day about the whole syringe episode the next day and he said the same thing as the doctors in Majorca except that there was no need for the Combivir. I am officially feeling good about myself! (Apart from the regular "just in case" blood tests over the next year, and the Hepatitis 'B' boosters.)

There are two kinds of people in this world:

Those who, upon blowing their nose, look at the tissue after doing it, and those who think that that is fucking stupid.

My wife is of the former group. Time and time again I've watched her blow her nose, then surreptitiously examine the snot rag, just to see if the expelled mucous is actually there, I suppose. Often accompanying this is a queasy feeling on my part and that little voice in my head, I like to call him Mr. Rant, that yells "OH MY GOD THAT'S SICK! WHY DO PEOPLE DO THAT?! WHY, I ASK YOU?!"

But I don't mean to pick on my spouse. Just as I was starting to write this node I saw my coworker do it. I swear I was already resolved to noding this when I saw it happen. I'm beginning to think I am in a minority, with the number of times and with the amount of people I see this happen.

Let me tell you this: once I blow my nose, I have absolutely zero interest in ever looking at that snot again. I don't need to see it to know that I have successfully blown it out. All I have to do is breathe.

Thank you.

So I don't really have any real reason to complain. Which, naturally, means I'm about to anyway.

For reasons I won't go into, I recently was forced to buy a new iPod (aw...shucks). I trotted out last week and plunked down the $400 for a 20GB 3gen unit, only to find myself with Alpha Geek Inferiority complex a few days later when Newsweek was coopted to serve as Apple's press bitch. So back I go to the Apple store.

Ha! Betcha thought this was going to be an Apple store customer service bitch, didn't you? Well, no, wrong. They were quite nice, told me I was within my 10-day 'remorse period' (I love terms like that) and took back the iPod. Because I hadn't even opened the headphone blister pack (I use Koss's 'The Plug') they knocked a few percent off the restock fee, even! Then, after expecting to wait weeks for the new one, nope, they had them in store today - a mere 2 days after the announcement. This isn't the Apple I know and love to hate. $100 cheaper for the same storage? In stock within 2 days of announcement? Took back my old one?

Get it home, in my hot little hands, a spankin' 40GB version. Open the case. Right away, clues to how they cut corners - they're using recycled paper 'egg carton' material instead of styro in the packaging. Well, that's ok, I'm hip to that, it's probably even better for the environment. Open up the cube.

Waitaminit. Hm. USB cable, yep, FireWire cable, check, headphones w/foams, uh-huh...

No remote? And no carrying case? On the high end model?


I told you there wasn't any real reason to complain but that I would anyway. Especially since no one has shipped a case for this one yet, so now I'm caseless. It's not like the case in the 3gen cost them more than maybe two bucks in quantity! The remote? Well, gee, I *guess*...still, I'm kinda ticked.

At least they did put a dock in here. That would've tipped me over to a full-on rant. And, of course, the reason I got the new iPod, really? I hated those $#()_)@#(@ 'four button' controls. I was an original iPod user. I got used to having the buttons surrounding the wheel. They don't surround it, but the click wheel is almost, nearly, within-a-micrometer-of just as good.

Ah. Tunes.

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