Posted on Wednesday, October 1st, 2008
Moving quickly here because it's almost 8:00...
October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. As somebody with both family and friends affected by breast cancer, I'm happy to be promoting awareness and pleading for the ladies to get mammograms...
Dave & Bad Monkey love healthy boobies! Schedule your mammogram today!
And now, it IS 8:00, so I must take my leave of you to watch my favorite show currently on television...
It's Pushing Daisies Season TWO!
Posted on Thursday, October 2nd, 2008
I love Jägermeister. I love my hotel room. I love being naked in this fine hotel robe. I love my ceiling fan. I love my corner-suite with separate rooms for everything. I love that one of those rooms is a "drawing room" even though I don't know what it's fore. I love Austin. I love Karla for hanging out with me in Austin. I love Karla. I love that I remember how to make a link to Karla's blog. I love complimentary internet. I love being a little bit drunk. I love being able to sleep in and not have to start work at the ass-crack of dawn in the morning. I love chocolate pudding. I love my friends and family. I love that I get to meet Wayne tomorrow. I love that I managed to make yet another link without breaking the internet. I love the internet. I love my blog. I love the friends I've made with my blog. I love that President Bush won't be president much longer. I love second chances. I love traveling to new places and meeting new people. I love people. I love people who are not total dumbasses. I love the smell of my grandmother's apple pie. I love my grandma. I love my iPhone most of the time. I love Steve Jobs. I love Apple. I love love love love my Macintosh. I love traveling with my Macintosh. I love to travel. I love Edinburgh, Scotland and love that I will go back there one day. I love the escape. I love the freedom. I love those free snacks you get on an airplane no matter how lame they are. I love First Class upgrades. I love denying how much I love First Class upgrades. I love leg-room. I love that I remembered to hyphenate "leg-room" even though it took me six tried with spell-check in order to spell "hyphenate." I love that I get to spend time with my sister who is also one of my best friend in three weeks. I love knowing people who love me because of who I am rather than what I can do for them. I love making people happy. I love a woman's smile. I love cake. I love fortune cookies. I love that I can go to the fortune cookie factory and eat fresh warm fortune cookies in San Francisco in two weeks. I love art. I love creating something from nothing. I love seeing how others create something from nothing. I love the rain. I love walking in the rain without an umbrella with a girl who likes walking in the rain without an umbrella. I love you Mary. I love knowing that I'm not alone no matter where I go on this earth. I love that there's always better days ahead. I love those who feel hard work is its own reward. I love that I know the difference between "it's" and "its" and "their" and "there" and "your" and "you're." I love teachers. I love people who try to make the world a better place. I love knowing that there's Something More if you stop to look for it. I love truth. I love honesty. I love faith. I love all the little things that make us human.
I love love.
I love you.
Posted on Friday, October 3rd, 2008
Wow. What an amazing day.
And to think I almost missed it.
Originally, I was flying into San Antonio for some plans there, then driving up to Austin (because that's where Wayne and Karla were at). When my plans in San Antonio fell through, I had to cancel my entire trip to Texas. But then at the last minute I decided to go to Austin anyway. I had only been to the city a few times before, had never met Wayne in person, and it's a lot cheaper than going to Norway to say hi to Karla.
The day started with me ironing all my clothes.
Usually when the TSA pulls my suitcase for extra screening (which is ALWAYS) they are pretty good at putting everything back together nice and neat. This time, not so much. Every piece of clothing I packed had become a massive ball of wrinkles. Since I suck at ironing, they were only slightly less wrinkled after I had finished, but at least I had the satisfaction of knowing I tried to make myself look presentable.
Then it was time for lunch with Wayne from The Blog of Whall. I won a contest over at his blog a while back, and was given a choice of prizes. I picked "lunch on me the next time you're in Austin," and was here to collect. I was expected the 99¢ menu at Taco Bell, but Wayne went all-out and took me to The Shady Grove, a very cool restaurant which is the epitome of Austin's hippie culture. It's places like this that seem to typify the city, but not Texas as a whole. Indeed, if you were to visit only Austin, you might assume that Texas is a liberal, left-leaning, Obama-loving, Blue State. The reality is quite different, as shown by this electoral map from the last presidential election...
It's kind of interesting, because Austin is almost defiantly proud of being different. The wait staff at Shady Grove were wearing T-shirts saying "KEEP AUSTIN WEIRD!" which just about sums it up. After some darn fine chips & queso, we managed to get a table for delicious burgers out in the inviting Austin sunshine. Despite some political differences on some issues, Wayne and I are more alike than different, which made for great conversation and a terrific lunch. But no worries, I'm pretty sure I've convinced Wayne that Obama for president is the way to go, so Austin's Travis County going Blue in November is all but assured.
Then tonight it was time for Austin's premiere blogging event: Davestin!
Here's Wayne, much happier now that he's supporting Obama...
Here's Ren from "Renagerie" with Wayne's lovely wife Christy (no, I have no idea how Wayne managed to get her to marry him either, the lucky bastard!)...
Going clock-wise from the lower left to lower right, that's Mags from "The Corrosion" and Karla May from Pine Curtain Refugee" and Lindsay from "Malcontent Mama" and Oliver and Lee from "I Love Beer" and Jaye from "Putting the 'Fun' in Disfunctional" and Karla from Tales of a Texpatriate and Badger from "Badger Meets World" (our resident palm-reading expert). Bookhart from "Up From Sloth" appears to have escaped...
No, wait a second... there's Bookhart down at the end there! And me, eating awesome pepper-fries with delicious chipotle mayo...
After dinner some of us headed off to The Jackelope for much drinking and merriment! Unfortunately Wayne had to run home and do some campaign work for Obama so he, Christy, and Ren couldn't join us. But he did give me a super-sweet Pearls Before Swine book to read on the plane-ride home tomorrow before he left, so it's all good.
After drinking entirely too much, I stumbled back to my hotel for some sleep. As I was looking across the street at a neon sign which said "Hospitality On Call" and wondering if it meant what I thought it meant, I heard somebody calling my name...
...only to discover that a friend I haven't seen in almost a decade was staying at the same hotel! This awesome coincidence called for even more drinking and merriment, at which point I think I must have passed out, because I honestly cannot remember how I got here to my hotel room.
Oh well. I still have my iPhone, camera, wallet, and all my clothes, so I guess everything worked out in the end.
Or not, depending on how you gauge a successful evening out on the town in Austin.
Posted on Saturday, October 4th, 2008
I catch some heat for the "constant complaining" I do while traveling as I post my tales of woe here at Blogography and on Twitter. I'm regularly told that I have the worst luck ever when traveling. In truth, this is not really the case. Most of my travel experience is positive. But when you travel constantly, the probability of running into problems goes up. If you take four trips a year, you might have one or two bad experiences. If you take forty trips a year, you'd have ten to twenty bad experiences under the same odds. So, in reality, I'm no less lucky than the average traveler... I just travel more so it seems that way.
Last night I ran into an old friend I haven't seen in many years. He was staying here at the same hotel, which made it easy for us to catch up. It was a great experience on top of an already amazing day... but it did mean that I didn't get to bed until 2:00am. This was no big deal, because I just planned on sleeping in.
Two-and-a-half hours into my slumber, I hear loud, constant knocking. At first I thought it was on my door, but it actually ended up being on the room next door. After no answer, a woman starts shouting loudly "OPEN THE DOOR! YOU'VE GOT TO OPEN THE DOOR! OPEN THE DOOR NOW!!! Eventually, somebody opens the damn door and I hear the full exchange. Apparently, the room was paid for with a stolen credit card, and the woman was wanting full payment immediately, or the "guest" would have to leave. This resulted in a lot of loud yelling on both sides, making it impossible for me to go back to sleep. Instead I had to listen to things like "I'M IN A FIGHT WITH MY BROTHER AND HE CANCELLED THE CARDS! THEY'RE NOT STOLEN!!! and IT DOESN'T MATTER, WE NEED IMMEDIATE FULL PAYMENT OR YOU HAVE TO LEAVE!!! A second card was declined, which resulted in another visit and still more yelling. Eventually, the screaming man must have straightened everything out with his bank, because I think he got to stay.
My point her is that the hotel's treatment of this situation was fucked up.
I would expect this kind of thing to happen if I were paying $69 and staying in a Motel 6. But I'm not staying in a Motel 6, I am staying at The Driskill Hotel, which is Austin's most prestigious and exclusive hotel (just ask them!). THEY took a bad card. THEY had the problem. Yet it was their GUESTS who were made to pay for it. Why the hell would you wake up and entire floor of guests because of something like this? It's YOUR fucking problem, NOT mine, yet I'm the one rudely woken up at 4:30am? How is that fair? How is that right? How is that in accordance with the policy of treating guests well when they stay at your hotel? The Driskill is not a Motel 6, so stop fucking acting like one! Handle problems with discretion and don't make your guests be the one to suffer. Otherwise, all the fancy trappings, expensive accents, and classy rooms don't mean a thing... your hotel ends up coming off as a piece of shit and I'm embarrassed for you.
And, while I'm at it, one more complaint before I write my "real" entry for today...
What do you have to do to catch a fucking bus in this city?
I was standing at the stop for the No. 4 bus going north on 6th street. I saw the bus coming, but it wasn't slowing down so I waved my arm. The bus driver ignored it, and blew right past me. WTF?!? Not one to give up easily, I ran after the bus and caught up to it as it arrived at the next stop a block away. It barely slowed down at the stop and, just as I got to the door, it ignored me again and sped off. Fucking douchebag! What the hell are you doing driving public transit if you're not looking out for passengers? No wonder your bus was practically empty!
I guess next time I'll just throw myself in front of the fucking bus and hope for the best. But given how oblivious the driver was tonight, I'm guessing I'd end up dead.
Oh well, I guess the TWO-MILE WALK to The Mean Eyed Cat so I could say goodbye to Karla was good exercise.
Still, Capitol Metro... YOU FUCKING SUCK! FAIL! EXTREME FAIL!!!
Posted on Saturday, October 4th, 2008
Today merited two entries. The previous one was to get my massive complaint against my hotel and Capitol Transit out of the way so I could concentrate on the good things I got to do in Austin today.
It was my intention to wake up at sunrise and photograph some of the city under that divine light you get in the early morning. But after the horrors of last night (see afore-mentioned entry), I was just too exhausted to get out of bed. Instead I lounged around, attempting to rest up even though I couldn't sleep. Eventually I headed out at noon to see some of Austin.
I started out at the beautiful Capitol Building, just down the street...
Next I went to The Blanton Museum of Art. I hadn't been here in a long while, and they've done quite a bit of remodeling. The museum is bigger now, but the collection on display seems smaller. I don't really understand it. Still, there's some real treasures to be found (including a Kehinde Wiley!), making a visit definitely worthwhile...
Anybody know how long to bake a head for?
Singing "An Ode to My Exposed Breast" in G-minor.
From there I wandered back down Congress Street to the Austin Museum of Art and a walk down 6th Street. This is kind of a hub for Austin night life, and gets pretty crowded as the sun goes down. Some of the buildings and signage are just fantastic, making it equally impressive during daylight hours...
After goofing around town for five hours, it was time to meet for an early dinner with a friend who drove up from San Marcos. We were supposed to meet in San Antonio before my plans fell through, so I was grateful that they could change their schedule and come see me in Austin. Then it was back to the famous (infamous?) Driskill Hotel for a shower and change of clothes. Despite my problems last night, it is still a grand hotel that's beautifully appointed inside and out...
Since this is my last night in Austin, I wanted to have a drink with Karla so I could say goodbye. She had invited me to hang out with some of her friends at a very cool Johnny Cash tribute car called The Mean Eyed Cat. It took a bit more effort than I had planned to get there (see afore-mentioned entry), but it was worth the trip to get to see her one last time...
And thus ends my trip to Austin, capitol city of the Lone Star State of Texas...
I wonder what new adventures await me at my hotel tonight?
Posted on Sunday, October 5th, 2008
Home from Austin. For a little while, anyway. I must be brief, because I am not feeling very well.
• It's Peanuts! Thanks to the bag of peanuts I had on the plane AND the Drumstick ice cream sundae with peanuts I had when I got home... I now have a huge allergic welt above my ass crack. I also think that my intestines might have swollen up again because I've got some major cramping going on. Methinks I might have to start taking this allergy thing seriously after all. Oh well... at least now I'm more sure of what the cause is. So much for my Uncrustables peanut butter sandwiches.
• It's Prizes! A big "thank you" to everybody who commented or emailed to enter my Bullet Sunday 100 Contest! I've taken all 116 of you who entered, listed you in a spreadsheet. Randomly re-arranged a list of numbers from 1 to 116 three times, then generated a random number once the list had been randomly sorted to pick the winners. It's double the random for double the fun! The winners (who will be notified by email tomorrow on how to collect their prizes) are as follows (congratulations!!)...
• It's Over! Seriously, I'm dying here. Taking pills and going to bed...
Posted on Monday, October 6th, 2008
After massive quantities of Benadryl last night and massive quantities of Cetirizine this morning, my welts finally subsided. Cramping went on for a while longer, but I'm all better now. I've decided to stop eating all peanut products and see if that fixes things. I'm not convinced a peanut allergy is the real problem, because I remember plenty of times I've eaten peanuts and nothing happened. But I've got to try something because I'm quickly growing afraid to eat anything.
Except chocolate pudding.
Chocolate pudding would never hurt me.
It's my favorite thing to eat. I think it always has been, as photo evidence will support...
Perhaps it's time for a puddiet... eating nothing except chocolate pudding.
Because pudding has milk in it and milk does a body good!
Posted on Tuesday, October 7th, 2008
As a television whore, one of my biggest failings is not jumping on new shows.Too many times I've read about a new show, decided I wasn't interested, then didn't watch it...
...only to find out later that it's a totally awesome show and I've been missing out for months.
Or, in the case of Life a full year.
A police officer is wrongly convicted of a triple-murder, sentenced to life in prison, then serves twelve years before being exonerated. At which point he wins a 50 million dollar settlement and gets to rejoin the police force as a detective. Such a show didn't appeal to me... at first.
It wasn't until I heard that Donal Logue was joining the cast in this second season that I suddenly became interested in Life. It was only then that I downloaded a free episode from iTunes, watched some free episodes from NBC.com, and realized that I had made a huge mistake. This is one of those totally awesome shows I've been missing! So now I've bought the first season DVD and am grabbing new episodes with TiVo. Better late than never, I guess...
I will not be making the same mistake by passing on ABC's new show Life on Mars.
It's an Americanized take on a British television series I love about a cop who gets hit by a car in 2006 and wakes up in 1973. You don't really know if he's insane or actually time-travelling, but it's a fascinating ride. Hopefully the US version will be worth watching (it's got Harvey Keitel and Gretchen Mol in it!)...
Part of the appeal of the original BBC show is the pains they took to get the 1970's setting done right. From the look of things, the people running ABC's Life on Mars get that.
Life on Mars premieres this Thursday, at 10:00pm (9:00pm Central).
In other news...
I wish I was back in Maui eating French Toast with bananas and macadamia nuts...
Crap. Now I'm hungry.
Posted on Wednesday, October 8th, 2008
This morning when I went out to my car there was frost on the windows.
This put me in kind of a melancholy mood of indifference right from the start. Things only went downhill when I couldn't find my ice scraper and had to use a credit card to scratch a hole to see through. Realizing that my day was doomed to suck, I went back inside and had a cup of hot cocoa. It was my hope that this would put me in a happier place as I faced the day ahead. Unfortunately, that never happened, and my day ended up sucking just as bad as I thought it would.
Next time I'm adding vodka to my hot cocoa and seeing where that gets me.
Or just giving up and going to Disneyland...
I love you Sully!! Photo by Hilly-Sue.
I need sleep.
And to forget.
Posted on Thursday, October 9th, 2008
Please, can the election be over now so we can all just get on with our lives?
I would be remiss if I didn't mention that none of this financial mess would be happening if I were absolute ruler of the earth.
Posted on Friday, October 10th, 2008
The flight to Chicago was blissfully uneventful.
I wish I could say the same about the traffic on 294 as Vahid and I drove north to Six Flags Great America. A drive that normally would take 35 minutes took two hours. This kind of sucked, because we ended up being an hour late to the opening of Fright Fest.
Fright Fest, for the uninitiated, is where Six Flags has special night-time opening hours for their park and decorate with scary Halloween stuff. It sounds very cool... and would be, if they committed to it fully.
But they don't, so it kind of blows.
Rides are given new "spooky" names, but park signage has the original names. This makes finding stuff very difficult. A lot of time was wasted wanderings around that could have been spent riding rides.
Oh well. A fun time was to be had. I think Raging Bull is one of my new favorite roller coasters. And Superman was one of the most unique. A very cool park for roller coasters, that's for sure.
But not for food.
Riding gut-busting roller coasters for hours had no effect on me.
Yet having a Papa John's Pizza Combo Meal at Six flags made me sicker than a dog.
I hope I feel better in the morning, or else tomorrow is going to be a very rough day. Especially since a boat is involved.
Posted on Saturday, October 11th, 2008
As one of the most architecturally diverse and beautiful cities in the USA, it was quite a treat...
From there, it was time for delicious hot dogs, Chicago style! We ate at America's Dog, because they had a veggie option...
After that, it was time for drinks at the top of The Hancock Building...
After making custom T-shirts at the T-Shirt Deli, it was time to get down to business. Here is Jenny starting the official TequilaCon 2009 White Board...
And here is Brandon (who is apparently wearing Bristol Palin's T-shirt) photographing Round Two of the selection results for host city...
And here is Vahid taking a Super Pac-Man break during the grueling three hour discussion...
Unfortunately, Sometimes Rabbit showed up to have a drink and scare the hell out of me...
Last on the agenda was dinner up in Andersonville, where we were lucky enough to see PUPPET BIKE!! It's a tiny puppet theater... ON A BIKE! Here's a dog and a cat getting ready to dance...
PuppetBike makes Jenny happy...
And Chicago makes me happy.
Posted on Sunday, October 12th, 2008
I'm writing a Bullet Sunday that I know I won't get to post! How awesome is that?!?
• Sorry! Okay then... first, thanks to all the nice people who emailed me to make sure I was okay because I didn't post entries for the past two (now going to be three) days. On Friday I wrote an entry, but didn't want to pay a $12 internet fee to my hotel to post it, so I thought I'd do it Saturday morning at my new hotel. But then I found out my new hotel has flaky internet that didn't allow me to post at all. So I dutifully wrote entries each day anyway, and will posted them when I get home tomorrow. Likewise, I'll try to get caught up with all the email which has been piling up. For future reference, if I should ever drop off the face of the earth again and new entries aren't showing up, you can always take a look at my Twitter updates, which are posted in the sidebar and at DaveStalker™ (it's easier to update Twitter from my iPhone than my blog when I'm on the go).
• TQ2009! For those who have been emailing and Twittering to ask about TequilaCon 2009 plans, I'm not your man. TequilaCon is Jenny and Brandon... I'm just a lackey who flies to planning meetings when I'm summoned and makes the lanyards. For breaking TQ2009 news, be sure to keep checking TequilaCon.com (which currently points to a Flicker album from TQ2008, but will eventually point to Jenny's post on next year's event). About the only thing I can tell you is that the host city for next year has been narrowed down to three choices, and they all took us by surprise. I guess these planning meetings aren't just an excuse to drink copious amounts of alcohol after all!
• Economical! I've heard of people losing their shirts as the stock market tank, but apparently they're losing their pants now as well. Spotted this morning on Wacker and Dearborn here in Chicago...
• Chicago2! After viewing beautiful works at The Art Institute of Chicago, Jenny, Vahid, and I met up with Brandon at Pizanos Pizza for lunch and then headed to Millennium Park. Brandon then just had to see Obama's Three Million Dollar Overhead Projector at the Adler Planetarium, so off we went. Except the Chicago Marathon was in town, so we ended up having to walk twenty miles in the scorching heat to get there. But it was all in the name of science, so it's all good in the end.
• Betty! Usually, I don't like putting stuff on Blogography that I didn't create... but I will always make an exception for Betty White, who I love more than chocolate pudding (which is saying a lot). She recently made a brilliant appearance on Craig Ferguson, and has been catching some flack for calling Sarah Palin a "crazy bitch" while play-acting as John McCain's speechwriter...
First of all, Betty was playing a character. Second of all, Sarah Palin is a crazy bitch. That's what being a maverick is all about! Because abstinence-only sex education really works, people!
• OutFOXed! I was wholly disgusted to see that FOX Home Entertainment has gone and revised the DVD boxes for The Simpsons yet again. They've taken a kind of "hybrid" approach between the original (and very cool) boxes and the outrageously fucked-up and stupid "giant head" boxes that started appearing on the Sixth Season set. Now, there's still a giant head (it's Krusty!) except you can peel it off so it fits on the shelf next to the rest of your collection. The problem is that peeling off the giant head strips ink from the "real" box leaving it looking shitty. But if you leave the damn thing on, it looks like shit anyways, and takes up twice the space on your shelf unnecessarily...
But that's not even the worst part. The worst part is that INSIDE the box they no longer have snap-in spaces for the DVDs... they now just slide them all into a giant accordion-style cardboard sleeve. This not only makes it difficult to get your DVDs in and out, but it also makes it easy to damage both the DVDs and the packaging. So fuck you FOX Home Entertainment. Fuck you up your stupid fucking asses, you greedy fucking assholes. I was already pissed that my Simpsons DVD collection doesn't have a consistent look between seasons when sitting on the shelf, but now I'm pissed that I ever started buying your fucking DVDs in the first place. You cut corners where it counts by using cheap-ass packaging, and don't give a flying fuck about your loyal customers, so why should I give a shit about you? I guess this teaches me a lesson... don't send money to studios who treat you like crap and stick you with poor-quality product, just download the stuff you want off BitTorrent so you don't have to deal with their bullshit. It's really amazing how movie and television studios bitch and whine about piracy, yet they do everything in their power to force consumers down that path. Big fucking surprise. Well, congratulations FOX Home Entertainment, unless you make this right with your customers, I've just bought my last fucking Simpsons DVD set from you. Shame on The Simpsons creator Matt Groening for allowing FOX to treat people like shit on his behalf. I hope the millions of dollars he's making off of his creation compensates for the ill-will of his fans who has supported him all these years.
Hopefully I will get home and the internet there will be working. Otherwise, I guess I'll be posting this sometime next week.
Posted on Monday, October 13th, 2008
Whee. I have internet again, and have posted a back-log of entries I couldn't post while in Chicago.
I'd write all about my journey home, but sitting next to a disgusting gum-smacking whore took all my energy, so I'll just run a reminder that this Saturday is Dave Francisco! If you live in the Bay Area and would like to meet up with some bloggers, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org ASAP so I can make sure we have a head-count for reservations...
And now it's off to an early bedtime so I can be productive tomorrow.
Boy does that sound like fun.
Posted on Tuesday, October 14th, 2008
Is same-sex marriage a right to ones pursuit of happiness? Or is same-sex marriage the end of the universe? I honestly don't know. It's hard to say which it is when marriage can be so many things to so many people.
Marriage can be marrying somebody for money.
Marriage can be marrying somebody for citizenship.
Marriage can be marrying somebody for power.
Marriage can be marrying somebody for obligation.
Marriage can be marrying somebody for security.
Marriage can be marrying somebody for image.
Marriage can be marrying somebody for convenience.
Marriage can be hundreds of things that have nothing to do with love, but it's all okay under the eyes of the law.
Yet California's "Marriage Protection Act" Proposition 8 is saying two people who are actually in love shouldn't be able to get married if they have the same genitalia. That's not "protecting marriage"... it's discrimination against two tax-paying, consenting adults. And it's not fair. If people born straight get to marry who they want, then that same right should extend to people born gay or else it's discrimination. It doesn't matter what anybody believes, it's about what's fair.
Fair is good.
We need more good things in the world right now.
I hope voters in California think so too.
Posted on Wednesday, October 15th, 2008
This is an entry in two parts. First I am going to go insane. Then I am going to cry.
Let's start with the insanity, shall we? In response to my entry yesterday about voting no on Proposition 8 in California, a reader brought to my attention the even more outrageous Proposition 1 happening in Arkansas. This truly vile ballot item facing voters in "The Natural State" would prohibit cohabitating couples from adopting or providing foster care to children. Put another way, only a married couple would be allowed to provide a home for a child in need. To put it still another way... unmarried sinners and God-hating faggots need not apply.
Even when facing unbelievably ludicrous shit like this, I honestly do try very hard to see an issue from all sides.
But how in the hell do you do that when somebody honestly thinks that being stuck in an orphanage is a better environment for a child than a home where they are wanted, loved, and cared for? Even in a Prop 1 supporter's most depraved homosexually-themed nightmares, how is an unmarried couple for a family or a gay couple for a family worse than no family at all? How is it that being married automatically makes you perfect caregivers for children? As I read through mind-boggling comments by scary homophobes on Prop 1 news sites, it apparently has to do with exposing innocent children to "perverts" and turning them gay by example. I can't even dignify this with a response except to ask "if being raised by a straight couple guarantees a child won't 'turn gay'... where do the gays come from?"
Study of the issue has brought me no closer to understanding how children are better off if Prop 1 passes, thus denying them loving homes that are all too rare.
I mean, seriously, WHAT THE FUCK?!? Shit like this makes me insane.
See, I told you so.
It seems whenever I write an entry in support of gay issues, it opens up the question of "why" as in "Why do you care about gay rights when you're not gay." Sometimes readers guess it's because I've met bunches of gay bloggers, which is indeed part of it (I also have gay "real life" friends and people I work with who are gay), but it's not the driving force behind my activism. Others assume it's because I'm gay myself, which I've already addressed... or because I somehow think it's funny, which I assure you I do not.
The simple answer is because I am a human, and believe that nobody should be treated differently because of how they're born. Whether it be because a person has blue eyes... or freckles... or is tall... or is short... or is gay... or whatever. That's how they were made, that's how they are, and that's how they're going to be. To punish somebody or treat them as a lesser person because of who they are is discriminatory cruelty and not very human at all.
The long answer is a little more complex.
I've never written about it before because it's also a lot more personal.
If anybody cares, I've done my best to explain it all in an extended entry.→ Click here to continue reading this entry...
Posted on Thursday, October 16th, 2008
The latest meme du jour is to tell about your worst date ever.
Unfortunately, my "worst" date contains classified information, so I can't spill the beans on that until the statute of limitations expire. What I can do is talk about my second-worst date. Compared to some of the stories I've read by other bloggers, it's relatively tame... but it does have vomit in it, which should be grounds for immediate qualification... shouldn't it?
Lucky for me I already blogged about it a couple of years ago, so I get to cut and paste today's entry. This is good, because I have to get up in 4-1/2 hours so I can drive to the airport. Stupid early morning flights.
When talking about "worst dates," I am reminded of a time I attempted to build a relationship while battling a migraine headache AND being nauseated by The Special Pills. It all started when I was set up on a date with a girl who I really, really liked... but from a distance. I didn't know her very well at all. A mutual friend asked her if she wanted to go out with me, and she said something like "oh, he's funny!" and agreed. But, on the day we decided on dinner and a movie, I was hit with a huge migraine. Desperately not wanting to break our date for fear I would never get another one, I doped up on The Special Pills and went on my way. Dinner was painful. She talked and talked and talked about... well, nothing, really. My head was throbbing, and she simply would not stop talking. After paying the check I went to the bathroom so I could throw up. Then we drove to the movie with her talking all the way... I was SO looking forward to the film starting in anticipation of finally getting some peace and quiet. Alas, it was not to be. She talked through the entire film...
*Those unfamiliar with internet-speak can get an "O RLY" explanation here.
It was the longest night of my life. Puking in the bathroom was actually a hilight. The funny thing was that she thought the date went great, and asked my friend if I would be asking her out again. Sure she was fun to look at, but the thought of having to endure another night of her non-stop talking without guarantee of a sexual return was more than I could take. I didn't make just one excuse to get out of asking her out again, I made five.
One day I should be reminded to write about my third-worst date. It has Vaseline in it... but not in the way you might be thinking.
Posted on Friday, October 17th, 2008
I've been thinking that bad news can always be made worse, but can rarely be made better.
Take today for example. I had to get up at 4:00am after only 4-1/2 hours sleep to make my first flight, then didn't have time for breakfast because of a very short layover in Seattle. So when my bad news came, I was both tired and hungry. Would my news have been less bad if I had been well-rested with a full stomach? Probably not. Heck, I'm pretty sure it would have still been bad news had it been delivered by two dozen topless dancing girls while eating breakfast in bed with Elizabeth Hurley. Bad news sucks regardless.
But Johnny Rockets DID have a veggie burger in stock for lunch... I DID get to eat dinner with a friend I haven't seen in a long time... and I WILL get to go fortune cookie hunting with Kentucky Girl in the morning... and it IS Dave Francisco tomorrow night... and I DO happen to be in San Francisco, which is a fantastic city... so I guess if you're going to get bad news, there are worse ways you could console yourself into recovery.
And, as if that wasn't good enough, I did get to see a rat on top of a cat on top of a dog today. That almost never happens!
Since it would be pretty hard to top something that fantastic, I won't even try.
Posted on Saturday, October 18th, 2008
Hello from San Francisco!
The Palace Hotel where I'm staying wants $17 in internet fees for me to post this entry, so I'm guessing it will have to be posted tomorrow. I am also guessing I will never again stay at The Palace Hotel. It may be a beautiful property with wonderful rooms and impeccable service... but I'm not going to be ripped off by a douchebag hotel that charges such an outrageous amount of money for something that I get for free when I stay at a hotel that costs half as much. Fuck The Palace Hotel. Fuck them up their greedy stupid asses.
This morning I met up with Kentucky Girl and her husband to explore Chinatown (again). Here's what I learned this time around... 1) Kentucky Girl likes to play with peckers. 2) Panda loves tea. 3) My new Hannah Montana singing pen is my most favoritest pen ever. No matter how many times I buy freshly-made fortune cookies, they're so damn good that it tastes like the first time all over again...
Good news for anybody looking for a low-interest housing loan... Washington Mutual has money to burn! Oh... wait a second...
After buying a couple bags of crack fortune cookies, we walked back towards Market St. where we saw this very cool sign for the "Hungry I" topless bar...
And then we ran across a Scientology protest at the TransAmerica Pyramid Building. The protesters were holding such signs as "Tom Cruise Scares Me" and "Join Scientology, Go Bat-Shit Crazy" and "Stop Scientology's Crimes." All the activists were wearing goofy masks, which kind of undermined whatever message they were going for (probably to protect their identity and avoid the consequences of Scientology's "Fair Game" policy), but that wasn't half as silly as protesting in the Financial District on a Saturday when hardly anybody was around...
For whatever reason, my leg was killing me by the time we got back to Pacific Place Centre, which required me to hobble back to my crummy hotel for drugs and a couple hours of napping. The good news is that the Oxycontin really helped in eliminating the excruciating pain. The bad news is that I spent the rest of the day drugged out. By the time Jester and Uncle Monkey Boy dropped by for a trip to Haight Street, I was feeling no pain at all. It was there that I got to see this very cool Obama painting on one of the buildings...
But that coolness paled in comparison to the big surprise that Foo-Diddy had in store for me... Hilly-Sue made it to Dave Francisco! This was such awesome news that we celebrated by going to a gourmet hot chocolate shop (which obviously stole my idea for Davebucks)...
Then we went to a bar in North Beach that had the most lethal Long Island Ice Teas I've ever tasted. The interaction of such heinous levels of alcohol coupled with the drugs I took had me so out of it that I barely noticed that Hilly was licking my nuts. But don't worry... they weren't peanuts, they were cashews...
Dave Francisco dinner was at "Joey and Eddies" next to Washington Square Park. It was a little pricey, but the pasta was cooked so perfectly that it was worth every penny. Their beautiful al-dente noodles were sublime, and just reinforced my belief that all these restaurants which continue to serve mushy, over-cooked pasta should be forced to close their doors. Oh how I love properly-cooked noodles!
In attendance were a fine bunch of people...
(from lower-left, clock-wise)...
Thanks so much to everybody who could make it for a terrific evening! (and a special thanks to Hilly for driving all the way up from L.A. and sharing her pictures with me, and Jester for scoping out restaurants and taking care of reservations and stuff).
This was such a great day. I really wish I didn't have to fly home in the morning.
Posted on Sunday, October 19th, 2008
I'm writing today's Bullet Sunday at Seattle-Tacoma International airport during my 3-1/2 hour layover. I forgot to charge my MacBook battery, so here's hoping that I can type really fast today...
• Event! Finally got around to updating my Events Page with Austin, Chicago, and San Francisco, and I'll try to update my blogroll and sidebar tonight. Amazing that I've met over 100 people now! By far my favorite part of blogging is continuing to meet my readers and fellow bloggers, so hopefully this will continue into next year and beyond.
• Trick! This morning I got a notification email that a critical part of my Halloween costume I ordered for Avitable's party is out of stock and not expected before I leave. Since this was the ONLY place I could find it after an exhaustive two-day search, I'm screwed. Now I'm going to have to work on an entirely different costume with less than two weeks to go. So nice they waited almost THREE WEEKS to tell me that I won't be getting the item I needed. Now that's customer service!
• Vote! I brought my Voter's Information Pamphlet with me so I'd have something to read on the plane. Most of the issues are fairly straightforward for me this time (when they're not, I usually defer to whatever side The League of Women's Voters takes... they've got a pretty good track record). As an unaffiliated voter, I tend to vote for both Democrat and Republican candidates. This largely stems from the idea that Republicans tend to be from Eastern Washington and don't forget about us when it's time to make the budget. Democratic candidates tend to focus on Seattle's problems first (it's the voter base that got them elected, after all), and I never really feel the area where I live is well-represented. Of course, when it's time to vote for president, there's no way I'm voting for piece-of-shit POW/MIA betrayer McCain. I may not agree 100% with everything Obama says, but in this race there's no contest. I would never give my vote to an angry unstable bastard with total disregard for the men and women serving in our military like McCain. The fact that he's in bad shape health-wise, leaving the joke that is Sarah Palin as our president if he dies, is just the icing on the cake. Thankfully McCain's fellow MIA/POW betrayer asshole, John Kerry, didn't win the Democratic ticket or else I'd end up voting for Ralph Nader!
• Boredom! This past week I took my grandmother to East Wenatchee so she could get her flu shot. Along the way she mentioned something about how the snow kept coming later and later and the amount of snow was less and less each year. She worried that if this trend continued, we might not have a white Christmas this year. She then remembered one year when she was a kid in the 1920's how there was no snow for Christmas, so her and her sisters went outside to wait for it. This kind of boggles my mind, because I can't fathom being so completely bored that I'd go outside and wait for it to snow. I'd probably not even be bored enough to bother looking outside a window, preferring to consult the weather widget on my MacBook instead. It's things like this that make it difficult for me to know if we're better off... or worse off... in today's hectic, modernized world. There are days I'd sure like to be bored enough to go outside and wait for it to snow.
• Creative! My copy of Adobe Creative Suite CS4 arrived, and I'm kind of hesitant to start using it. On my very first launch of the new Photoshop, I found a massive bug (if you use Apple's "Spaces" virtual desktops and launch an app in a space different than where you have it defaulting to, then open an Photoshop file by double-clicking it in The Finder, you end up in a limbo between Spaces and have to click back and forth in order to access the image... wheeeee!). This just makes me wonder what other horrendous crap I'm going to have to deal with because ONCE AGAIN Adobe doesn't test their software very well. I mean, seriously, Spaces is a standard feature of the Mac OS... did nobody bother to turn it on when testing the programs? What's next... is The Dock going to stop working in CS4 apps? And here I was hoping I wouldn't have to rip Adobe a new one like I did last time.
And now, since I'm down to 5% battery life left, I guess that's all for Bullet Sunday.
UPDATE! Oops. Since I forgot that I didn't get to post Saturday until Sunday, then completely forgot about Sunday until Monday. Hopefully Monday's entry will actually be on Monday so I can break this chain of not knowing what day it is.
Ummm... it is Monday, is it not?
Posted on Monday, October 20th, 2008
Blargh. There's not enough time left in the day to blog properly.
Whenever I get a new version of Adobe Creative Suite, I completely start over from scratch on my computers. This is a day-long, tedious endeavor that involves making two redundant backups, reformatting my drive, reinstalling the MacOS X, then re-downloading and installing all the software I know and love.
It may sound like overkill for an upgrade, but I learned the hard way when moving from CS to CS2 that Adobe puts a lot of stuff on your machine that you may not ever get rid of. To make sure that everything runs at its best and conflicts are avoided, a fresh approach seems to work best.
As an added bonus, I clear out a lot of garbage that I've accumulated over the years, and have the opportunity to reclaim hard disk space previously occupied by crap.
In this case, 18 gigs of crap.
And no, it wasn't porn.
Not knowing what in the heck had been taking up all that space, I went back through my backup archive.
For two hours.
Turns out at some point I duplicated my entire Applications folder without realizing it, chewing up 16 gigs of hard disk space I never even knew I should have had available.
Yay! More room for porn!
Posted on Tuesday, October 21st, 2008
It was an eventful day.
Here's hoping tomorrow is equally exciting!
Posted on Wednesday, October 22nd, 2008
Ever feel like you just don't want to feel anymore?
I've been getting that a lot lately.
Posted on Thursday, October 23rd, 2008
I can't take it anymore. It's to the point where I don't even care who wins... just make the stupid-ass political ads stop. There is no way that any of the candidates out there deserve to be rewarded with a vote after the way their campaigns have behaved. Particularly for Washington State Governor... both of these ass-hats need to be beaten... severely. They all do.
And Washington isn't even a swing-state! I can't imagine how annoying the ads must be in Florida, Pennsylvania, or Ohio right now.
Politics in this country suck ass.
Posted on Friday, October 24th, 2008
The people who will be representing YOU in our government are being elected RIGHT NOW.
Lil' Dave would like to remind everybody to get out and vote! Many States even allow you to vote early so you don't have to stand in lines come November 4th.
Bad Monkey would like to remind everybody that even if you're not registered to vote, you can still take place in the democratic process by smearing the candidate you like least with lies, exaggerations, and rumors.
Isn't democracy great?
Posted on Saturday, October 25th, 2008
"Have any change?"
Those words strike dread in my heart because whether I do or I don't, the answer is always going to be "no." Not because I'm heartless or unsympathetic, but because my beliefs dictate that the answer has to be "no." Giving money is always problematic for me because I can't control what is done with it. So long as the possibility exists that the money would be used to bring harm to themselves or others, I'm not allowed to give it. For all I know they're raising money to buy a gun and shoot up a school or something.
This is not to say that I can't do anything to help. When somebody is hungry and trying to get money for something to eat, I'm happy to buy them food (and have done so on several occasions). It's not a perfect system, but it's one I can live with.
I stopped to buy a couple bags of ice at the grocery store and ran across a guy asking for money.
I was about to say "no" until I found out he was wanting the money so he could photocopy his resume... which he had in-hand.
Yeah, helping somebody get a job was worth risking a couple bucks.
Hopefully it was well-spent...
...on cocaine and hookers. Because if I was unemployed, that's what I'd be wanting.
Posted on Sunday, October 26th, 2008
This has been a very challenging week for me on all fronts, and I am glad it's over. Hopefully I can manage to get caught up on all the emails, orders, blogs, and work I missed while dealing with the drama so things can get back to normal. It would be nice to have a little "normalcy" in my life right now.
• Thanks! A heartfelt thanks to everybody for the kind comments and emails this past week. I read absolutely everything I get, but haven't had much time to reply or comment myself. I'd like to send out a special thanks to the many, many wonderful people who were supportive of my posting of Henry's story a while back. Entries like this are not easy for me, and the nice feedback I got was much appreciated.
• High? I love these ads encouraging people to find out the facts about High Fructose Corn Syrup by pointing to a web site created by the people who make High Fructose Corn Syrup. I'd encourage people to do their own research on the evils of this horrendous shit and see where they net out. I only wish that there was away to easily avoid eating the crap, but it is in absolutely everything. I eat as little High Fructose Corn Syrup as possible, and hope that food manufacturers will start phasing it out like they have trans fats. In the meanwhile, these misleading ads will continue to tell people that High Fructose Corn Syrup is "okay in moderation" when there's no way to moderate it because most foods you buy have it in the ingredients...
Yo, bitch... you trying to kill me with that shit?
Bonus points if you watch the above-mentioned ad and notice that neither one of the actors in the commercial dare stick that High Fructose Corn Syrup laden popsicle in their mouths.
• Wrong! One of my most favorite features of my iPhone is having Google Maps in my pocket. When I need to find something, it's an invaluable resource. But not always. I am having a really tough time getting accurate information lately. I'll zero-in to where I'm at, search for something, and up will pop the location... except not really. I'll drive there only to find out that the information provided is outdated, inaccurate, or just plain wrong. Example... As I was driving home I wanted to see if a halloween store was around, so I Google Mapped it and came up with "Planet Halloween Superstore" in Monroe. Perfect. But having been burned by Google Maps before, I clicked through to the website and saw the information was indeed correct. So off I went... only to find it doesn't exist. So I call the number on the website and find out that it's been disconnected. Great. You'd think people would be nice enough to erase the website for a business that doesn't exist anymore so they don't waste people's time, but I guess not. Lame. What's even more frustrating is that Google Maps doesn't do anything about it, even when you put in a request... like I did for the now-dead Johnny Rockets in Chicago. It shows as "removal requested" in my web browser, but hasn't actually been removed...
And now let's look at the location on my iPhone...
Yes, that's right... this mobile version of Google Maps doesn't bother to show the removal request, which is pretty messed up. I guess I just have to remember to distrust Google Maps every single time I use it until I've verified the information directly. Kind of defeats the purpose, but that's progress for you.
• Watching! Finally got my copy of Dave Gibbons' Watching The Watchmen while I was working in Seattle... and was really disappointed. I was drooling at the prospect of insider information about my favorite graphic novel of all time but, despite weighing in with a whopping 256 over-sized pages, there just wasn't a lot there. Mostly just page after page after page after page of thumbnail layout sketches showing sketchy compositions with an occasional comparison to the actual printed page. As if that wasn't bad enough, the book's design sucked ass. Who the fuck puts small blue text over a black background on glossy paper and expects that anybody will be able to read it? I was constantly shifting the book as I was attempting to read it in order to see the text without having it blown out in reflective glare. Monumentally fucking stupid and an EPIC FAIL. My recommendation is to skip the book. If you're a die-hard Watchmen fan, it's worth a check-out at your local library, but hardly worth owning...
• Voted? Still encouraging people to vote in the upcoming election. Many states allow early voting so you don't have to wait in lines come November 4th.
And now I think I shall retire so that I can get up at some obscene hour and go to work early.
Posted on Monday, October 27th, 2008
I don't think I will ever understand humanity.
How there could be so much anger and hatred over something that can be found in a box of crayons?
Posted on Tuesday, October 28th, 2008
Generally speaking, I don't think much about the things I write on my blog. Each day when I find a free moment, I sit down and type out whatever happens to be crossing my mind at the time. There's no real agenda or message I'm going for, it's just random crap that's mostly useless and occasionally entertaining. This is not to say that I don't have lucid moments... every once in a while I've actually got something to say... but nobody's going to confuse Blogography with anything that's to be taken seriously. I draw cartoons with monkeys for heaven's sake.
This is a system that serves me well, even if it does result in my having to deal with random hatemail and nasty comments every once in a while. If you put yourself out there on the internet long enough, the hate is inevitable, regardless of how ridiculous you are.
Knowing that doesn't make it any easier, however.
Today I deleted the entry I had written rather than invite the inevitable hatemail that would have come from it. I just don't need the drama right now.
So instead, here's a cartoon of a monkey to look at...
Hopefully tomorrow I'll stop thinking when I blog again. It's a lot more productive.
Posted on Wednesday, October 29th, 2008
But mostly Shari.
Brandon tried to sneak into Wenatchee unnoticed, but it's a small city and Shari was in the right place at the right time and spotted him. Since she has his phone number, there was no escape. I'm sure Brandon tried to deny it and blame his appearance on a twin brother or alien pod-person, but the jig was up. Since Shari didn't make it to the TequilaCon Planning Meeting in Chicago, she demanded a special Emergency TequilaCon Post-Planning Follow-Up Dinner here in Wenatchee.
It was a commandment I couldn't refuse...
Yes, iPhone has the shittiest camera in a mobile phone ever.
So now I'm behind in work and don't have time to blog.
And it's all their fault.
I'm now a bit worried that the two remaining TequilaCon Planning Committee members who didn't make it to Chicago will demand post-planning meetings of their own. But since both of them seem to have disappeared off the face of the earth, I'm probably safe.
If I had to guess, I'd say Dustin contracted the ebola virus, went insane, then died in a gutter somewhere in Tijuana.
If I had to guess, I'd say Sibyl inherited 5 billion dollars, became a recluse, and is living in a palace in Dubai.
If I had to guess.
Posted on Thursday, October 30th, 2008
I've never been much into Halloween or getting dressed up for the occasion... but last year I had to change that.
Avitable was having his annual Halloween party in Florida and, since I was going to be somewhat nearby (Memphis), I decided to go. At first I was going to drop by a Halloween store and buy a SpongeBob Squarepants costume... until I looked at photos from his previous party. The costumes were pretty imaginative, and I realized right away that SpongeBob Squarepants wasn't going to cut it.
So I decided to go 100% geek for my costume and become "Holovirus-Infected Rimmer" from one of my favorite cult TV shows, Red Dwarf. The only thing I could buy was the Mr. Flibble puppet... everything else I had to make myself...
The "real" Rimmer is on the left, I'm on the right.
Here I am hanging out with Avitable and Mr. Flibble.
Making my costume was really hard and took a long time (the pigtails wig alone took an entire day to create). This year I thought that I'd get a head start, and began constructing my costume a full month early. Unfortunately, a major part of my costume was back-ordered for weeks, then ultimately cancelled. So this past weekend when I was in Seattle I had to start over from scratch.
Eventually I decided what my costume was going to be and went shopping for all the pieces. Once again everything would have to be hand-made, and this time my idea was going to be more complex than last year. To make matters worse, I was so swamped with work that I barely had time to play around with costume-making, and didn't get around to it until tonight.
It's now 1:00am and the costume is still not finished.
Hopefully I'll have a chance to finish it up in Florida or else I'll be going as Naked Cowboy.
Posted on Friday, October 31st, 2008