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Nihilists! Fuck me. I mean, say what you like about the tenets of National Socialism, Dude, at least it's an ethos. --character Walter Sobchak in The Big Lebowski

The last few days (or weeks--I can't tell anymore) have been kinda strange for me. As I've said in other daylogs, my roommates despise me, I can't find a place to live, I hate my job, I have no ambition, etc. And this snowballed--I've been angry at the world, at injustice, at everpresent hypocracy. I've been growing more and more nihilistic every day.

This has led me into a deep depression lately, which has made me a very irrational person. Picking fights, contemplating, um, things I shouldn't contemplate.

And so this is my apology to those of you on E2. I'm sorry I've been unreasonable and irrational. It's my responsibility. I'm even thinking of going back into therapy. But I'm sorry. Hopefully, I'll do better in the future.

Coming Clean on a True Story of Mutual Autoeroticism Between me and my Best Friend at the age of 15.

The first time is always the hardest. I thrust and lunge for what seems like hours in my position of choice, left only with the thought of baseball to help put up with the tiresome monotony. Sweat drips down every inch of my body and collects in little pools around the joints, folds and crevices in the bare flesh not currently in motion. The whole affair is turning into a slick, sloppy mess. Pain sings in my muscles as I expand and contract like an inchworm, tapping into the depths of my energy reserves for the home stretch.

My partner grunts and grimaces below me. He teeters on the brink of exhaustion and perhaps unconsciousness. He gasps for breath like a drowning man, and would still be moaning in pain if any steam had been left in him. The two of us suddenly collapse in a muddled heap, the last joule of energy spent, and the task at hand complete. A wave of endorphins floods my delerious brain from the thrill of the moment and pride of taking things to completion. I extract myself, stretch, and high-five my partner with a clap that punctuates the stillness like a rifle report. He fishes out a silver-lined case of Lucky Strikes, lights one for each of us, and we sit puffing away, relishing the afterglow and chatting away at the job only just put behind us like a bunch of old sea hands.

I never knew priming a car could be such an intense experience.

Their work ethic gets worse and worse, but eventually the Judges can reveal their scores for the final writeup round of the Pageant.

There was a gripping tussel for the last of the five places in the forthcoming Judges' Interview round, and below you will see which five made it through. Hearty congratulations are in order for all contestants, whether they managed a twirl on the ramp in each stage or not. With no further ado, here is the outcome of the four rounds.

Merit Whore for the Ages®

in conjunction with the

Everything Noder Pageant 2003

...proudly presents, the scores from the Ballgown Contest, and final standings in the Pageant.

How they scored:

| Contestant | Writeup                |  A  |  B  |  C  |  D  |  E  | aggr |  audience  |

| Spain      | Dazzler                | 8.5 | 8.8 | 8.5 | 8.7 | 9.0 | 43.5 | +14/-0 1C! |

| D.R.Congo  | Dick Trickle           | 7.0 | 7.0 | 5.3 | 7.2 | 7.5 | 34.0 | +27/-2 1C! |

| Suriname   | Richard Leakey         | 7.0 | 6.0 | 4.2 | 7.5 | 5.9 | 30.6 | +26/-1 1C! |

| Micronesia | *withdrawn*            |     |     |     |     |     |      |            |

| Serbia     | Queen Marie of Romania | 9.5 | 9.7 | 6.2 | 9.5 | 9.6 | 44.7 | +32/-0 4C! |

| Ethiopia   | Sal Mineo              | 9.5 | 9.8 | 9.6 | 9.1 | 9.2 | 47.2 | +26/-1 3C! |

| Portugal   | *withdrawn*            |     |     |     |     |     |      |            |

| Norway     | *withdrawn*            |     |     |     |     |     |      |            |

| Canada     | Pierre Elliott Trudeau | 9.7 | 8.0 | 9.1 | 9.3 | 8.5 | 44.6 | +25/-0 3C! |

| Turkmenist | *withdrawn*            |     |     |     |     |     |      |            |

| Australia  | Barry Humphries        | 9.5 | 8.8 | 8.4 | 9.1 | 8.7 | 44.5 | +26/-0 3C! |

| Thailand   | Emily Carr             | 9.0 | 8.5 | 8.1 | 8.4 | 8.4 | 42.4 | +24/-1 1C! |

| Iraq       | Winnie Mandela         | 3.2 | 5.5 | 4.9 | 5.0 | 4.8 | 23.4 | +44/-2 3C! |

The standings, after all rounds:


| Contestant |  R1  |  R2  |  R3  |  R4  | Total  | Rank |

| Spain      | 43.2 | 14.4 |  0.0 | 43.5 | 101.1  |  9   |

| D.R.Congo  | 38.4 | 43.8 | 41.1 | 34.0 | 157.3  |  5   |

| Suriname   | 39.0 | 42.1 | 44.8 | 30.6 | 156.5  |  6   |

| Micronesia | 38.5 | 38.5 |  0.0 |  0.0 |  77.0  |  12  |

| Serbia     | 44.8 | 31.8 | 40.8 | 44.7 | 162.1  |  4   |

| Ethiopia   | 42.7 | 45.1 | 42.8 | 47.2 | 177.8  |  2   |

| Portugal   | 44.1 | 42.6 |  0.0 |  0.0 |  86.7  |  11  |

| Norway     | 39.9 | 42.4 | 46.2 |  0.0 | 128.5  |  8   |

| Canada     | 36.7 | 31.4 | 41.4 | 44.6 | 154.1  |  7   |

| Turkmenist | *withdrawn *                       |  13  |

| Australia  | 42.1 | 41.5 | 43.6 | 44.5 | 171.7  |  3   |

| Thailand   | 43.5 | 48.0 | 46.7 | 42.4 | 180.6  |  1   |

| Iraq       | 25.1 | 25.2 | 27.2 | 23.4 | 100.9  |  10  |

See also: May 29, 2003 * April 27, 2003 * April 3, 2003 * March 26, 2003 * March 21, 2003 * March 13, 2003 * March 3, 2003 * February 24, 2003

Oh so sweet Friday!

It's feeling more and more like I'm taking a run up from the edge of Sunday and leaping over the week, barely grasping the fringe of 6 PM, Friday.


He made it again. On a dreaded 13th, no less.

With my work ethic, though, I can't see myself in that position for much longer. I work in the international affairs dept. of a patents and trademarks agency. It's a relatively small company, employing about 25 people, and if we receive a phone call from outside the country with the caller insisting on English, well... People go ape shit looking for yours truly. Now that's pathetic for a business enterprise which was built up by foreign clients.

Take my boss. The bullshit maestro just bought a Volvo for around sixty grand , only because freelancers have come and gone, translating page after page of these patent applications sent over by big ass pharmaceutical companies. Back then, I'm told, it was fascinating to watch the place snowballing gradually to it's current breadth. So many people have been instrumental during this period, building Jimbo his secure perpetual motion machine. The instrumental people are probably none the better for it. Somewhere there's a graduate student, a divorced gal, whatever, who has bills to pay, kids to feed, and who once upon a time slid in a building block while passing through. This guy just sits there and enjoys his hair on the phone while the sacks visibly throb. Then he wonders why we're all so lethargic and unwilling to get some work done. Duh!

I file the applications, translate the PCT National Phase specifications, wait on the pending, take international calls, take care of the tri-monthly bulletin, design tid bits for the website and copies for our ads, fix comp. problems...

But JIMBO gets the VOLVO!

At least his wife's fat

Nodeblock! I'm three writeups away from level four and I can't think of anything to write, as in words, not topics. Shit, there is always something to write about, but for some reason, I can't make anything work. Sometimes I can't even start, other times, I get three paragraphs in before I realize I'm ranting and my point is going no where (this is what has happened with that writeup I promised you drownzsurf). And sometimes when I am hit with a stroke of inspiration, I'm up to my neck in work and can't spare the time to jot even a few paragraphs down. So I'm going to daylog a bit for sanity sake, sorry if it's not very interesting.

I updated my age on my homenode today. As I reviewed it, I though, "Hey, I'm not 24 any more." I remembered I wanted to write something about my birthday, because I had a really good time. However, because of my paranoia, I didn't want to post it on my birthday, confirming a date. I am even a little cautious admitting to being a Gemini but it seems to be a nice little compromise between my realistic understanding of the world and my paranoid understanding of the world. Anyway, it's not like a clever person couldn't find out an awful lot of information about me from reading between the lines of my homenode. But I've specifically selected the trivial information about myself and omitted anything I don't want coming out when I run for president. But yeah, I'm twenty-five now.

The week leading into my birthday, I took a vacation and got to spend some time in the west end of Vancouver. Sorry I didn't let anyone know I was coming, but I was with my wife and she thinks it's weird I want to meet people from the Internet. Besides, weren't you all on the island camping? Anyway, the city was gorgeous and we met some nice people. In a lot of ways it reminds me of Seattle, except the mountains are closer and all the buildings have balconies. You cannot get a hotel room in Seattle with a balcony. Usually the windows don't even open. Seattle has an unscrupulous suicide rate, which has literally affected the architecture of the city. Vancouver has laws about smoking indoors. Therefore, nearly every building in Vancouver has a patio or balcony and Seattle has none.

Not being able to smoke in a bar was rather aggravating, but I delt with it because I was getting Crown Royal for $3 CAD (which is about $0.45 USD, isn't it?). But the most extraordinary thing happened when the bar closed down. I am well acquainted with bar etiquette in Washington, at 1:30 the bar tender starts screaming for everyone to leave, "You don't have to go home, but you can't stay here," sort of thing. But in this little bar on the west end of Vancouver, someone lit up a cigarette. This is how I knew the bar was closed. So I lit up as well. And then...then I smelled that unmistakable smell. As others began to light up, there was more than just tobacco burning. After a few minutes of this, the bar tender pipes up, "May I have your attention please?" Here it is, he's going to kick us all out, I thought. Once we quieted down he announced, "I believe you'll be much more comfortable in the back by the fireplace." God bless Canada! As we ventured back, there was someone already enjoying the fire and a variety of smoke as well. Naturally, I sat next to him, only to find out he was the owner of this fine establishment. We enjoyed ourselves into the no-so-wee hours of the morning.

It disturbs me a little how difficult it is to get back into the United States. Evidently, one must now prove citizenship at the border, which can be done with a passport or birth certificate. I had neither. The border guard said the most idiotic thing when I showed him my Washington State ID, "Having an ID doesn't prove citizenship. Speaking English doesn't prove it either." As if we weren't coming from a nation where English is spoken, not to mention, it's spoken in England! After some standard questioning at the border station, however, we were allowed to continue. I think they were too busy ripping apart the car of these kids who were obviously in Canada for the same reason as other 19-year-olds. This problem at the border was really the only downer to the trip; all in all it was spectacular.

"Divorce is the psychological equivalent of a triple coronary bypass" (M. Blakely)

I look out the window, anywhere but at him. I cannot breathe when I see him. The sky is heavy and dark. The rain is pouring down. How apropos. Rivulets of water obscure my line of sight. No matter, really. My mind is not following my eyes. They are focused within. Breathe in, Breathe out. My ears are still connected to the sound of the judge's voice. I don't even remember his name so detached did I try to become. Two judges, a tiny voice reminds me. You've seen two judges today. Relax. Breathe in, Breathe out. I don't want to be here, in this place. I feel the tragedies of a thousand families splintered apart. The air is thick with the cries of children, the sobs of wives, the bitten back tears of husbands. I am not comfortable. I feel his own discomfort and I wince. I can not help it. I hate this process. He has been a part of me for so long. Eyes well up. Breathe in, Breathe out

3:50pm...the judge pronounces the marriage dissolved. Neither of us is happy with the outcome. Both of us feels it is not fair. And it isn't. Life is not fair. It is not fair that my children are now one of the statistics of those from broken homes. It is not fair that I am left shattered to pick up the pieces alone. It is not fair that his illusions of what he believed I should be were ripped from him. It is not fair to any of us. Life is not fair. The most we can expect is to take what is handed to us and ride it out as best we can.

I walk away numb. I still can not believe it has come this far. I still look for logic where there is none. My heart hurts. Literally. There is a finger poking through and twisting. My mouth feels like novacaine is setting in. My skin is cold. Don't forget to breathe. Strangely, for the first time in these past few days I don't feel tears threatening to burst forth. I don't feel much of anything at all. I stare blankly at the signed pages before me. It is over. Done. Dissolved. What God had joined together is now torn asunder.

4/19/86 - 6/13/03...RIP

I get in my car. Go home. Get changed. Go to work. Go through the motions. Repetitive movement will keep my body going while it waits for the rest of me to catch up. My chest is still tight. My skin is still cold. My face is still numb. It is still raining. My umbrella hangs limp at my thigh. I turn my head up towards the sky. Wash away the saline, please. At least now I can breathe. It is a start.

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