Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Strange Anniversaries

The first anniversary of my father's death has come and gone.

One of the most seminal and heartbreaking things I've ever experienced in my life still resonates. I haven't been able to write anything about my father not couched in pseudonyms and teenage vampiric fluff. Which probably doesn't count.

And I don't think tonight is going to break that strange spell.

So I sigh and offer this:

There's nothing I can say.
There's nothing we can do now.
There's nothing I can say.
There's nothing we can do now.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Dedicated to the One I Love: Jack the Plucky Hybrid

This is my ode to transportation - or lack thereof. Read to the accompaniment of the Shirelles (and not the Mamas and Papa's version in deference to the very squicky Mackenzie Phillips allegations of late):

My beloved hybrid, known colloquially as "Jack" (yes, my car is male), which I have been waivering between selling or keeping has been held hostage by Bay Ridge Honda now for 1.75 weeks.

This has been a mixed blessing.

On one hand, its a reprieve from the constant threat of the New York Parking Syndicate (something my tow-truck driver, Shawn, agreed with me about) and the strange passive aggressive notes that are occasionally pasted on my windows. But on the otherhand, there is the more sanitary issue of laundry (thankfully I own more pairs of pants than Imelda Marcos had shoes) and the need to transport el gato to her weekend sanctuary while I'm in Detroit this weekend.

Let me tell you that New York MTA does not make traveling 30 blocks in Brooklyn very easy. Although thankfully, it only took a little over an hour to get there and back. The plan was simple: a livery driver there (with the cat), a ten minute walk to the subway from Kensington and the X8 from 18th Avenue to the general vicinity of my pad.

The livery driver was a check - and drop dead gorgeous. I've never had that happen before as they're usually secreting nicotine and missing teeth (case in point, I once was in the backseat of a livery driver who admitted to being on Methadone mid-route. Yeah.) With Kai deposited, I walked to the F (which is now, apparently, also routing the G) where the simple act of buying a MetroCard (necessary for riding mass transit in the City) became a study in human folly.

You have the option in buying MetroCards of using either exact change or a debit/credit card. I tried my card first... and none of the unmanned card stations were accepting cards. I only had a $20 and there was no way of making change on that end of the station. Going to the manned end would not have been an issue - except they've been working on "improving" the throughway at Church Avenue for years with no end in sight. No admittance. So I return to the friendly junkies outside the station (who had tried to hit me up for a ciggarette or cash with a very bad rap) and walked down to the other end of the station, a block away where I discovered that none of the six card machines on that end were taking cards either and the station agent's computer was down, so she couldn't pretend to be facile in mathematics. No change. So out of the station again - this time for Walgreen's - where my change making was held up when two Indian women with strollers were accosted for shoplifting. Seriously people, when you're asked for a receipt if all you do is give a slow, stupid smile in response you should just give up criminal enterprises altogether.

Back to the station. This time with exact change. Missed the F by seconds - the conductor actually waved at me, but wouldn't open the doors. Thankfully the next F was express to 18th Avenue, where I caught the x8 with little issue (outside of the walking ciggarette who sat next to me after 50th - can you NOT smell yourself?) I did rediscover Newton's First Law, however, when I was catapulted past three rows of seats, across a metal bar and almost into the driver. Apparently my Docs need to be resoled, since they usually grip really well.

And then I was home.

I really miss Jack the Plucky Hybrid. Did I seriously think I could sell him to thwart the New York Parking Syndicate? After my strange, battery sucking alien flyover the Monday before last (my car and my cell phone completely lost power - thankfully I had thought to pull off the road when the steering suddenly went powerless), I am a little worried about him. The dealership is going to put in a new Hybrid battery (thankfully under warranty) to see if this third suggestion of woe is the culprit. So hopefully, we'll be reunited next week. When I'll have warrant to sing this:

In other news, I just finished Chapter 14 of my increasingly salacious remaking of Twilight. Which brought me just over 45k words. I KNOW I can do NaNoWriMo this year. If my upstairs neighbors stop having incredibly noisy bouts of sex interspersed with Gran Turismo, clearly subscribing to the "Life of International Luxury." (I have to add the caveat that I don't know any of the aforementioned for sure, but have extrapolated through repeated evenings worth of unwholesome goings-on drowned out only by Amaretto and Ryan Adams).

Fortunately, I'm off to Detroit tomorrow so they can subscribe to the old "Click and Dick" to their heart's content.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

A blog, by definition requires actually... I don't know... blogging?

In honor of September - the gateway to my favorite month of October - I thought I would update on my social whirl of the roach-that-wasn't, the Bensonhurst street fair that never ends, midnight run-ins with the DEA, the lost virginity of my Cleric and other random things of note.

Firstly: today was an auspicious day. For the first time since I have been gaming (not counting my unrequited love for Gurth Bigbottom's daughter) I have finally had a character that fell in love with - and consummated that love - with an NPC. Apparently, I was just waiting for a Druid with a CHA 25 with thighs of adamanite. Thankfully, despite positing Orla's similarities with Solitaire, I am not losing my religious powers with the demise of my maidenhead. Which is a good thing since I'm the only PC in the group with a positive Strength modifier.

Secondly: a musical interlude from the former folk supergroup Cry, Cry, Cry (Richard Shindell, Dar Williams and Lucy Kaplansky) -->

Thirdly: a tale of shame. So... one evening while I was penning the increasingly salacious pulp fiction (apparently plot is irrelevant if there's lots of skin on skin action, *sigh*) I have been spending far too many brain cells on, I happened to notice an ENORMOUS bug in my light fixture. It was immune to incredibly high pitched screaming. It was immune to the amazingly high jumps of el gato - who lives here to kill sentient beings that enter the apartment that are not me. And it FLEW. I blasted it with Lysol Disenfectant (it was the only aerosol I have in the house), but while destroying the colony of paint bacteria on my Ikea bookshelves the damned bug was immune. (Bug=Bug?)

Suffice it to say, after a panel of witnesses were involved (my 70+ year old landlady and her crew of variously cancerated porch friends) - the consensus was that it was either a (1) waterbug, (2) moth or (3) a figment of my imagination. I tore the apartment down to its base components the following day and found nothing. There aren't even spiders in my apartment. I would like to add that saying: "How can you sleep knowing its there??" is not helpful in abating bug paranoia. But it did get me thinking. I need to hire someone to come over and kill bugs for me. Do you think there's a Craigslist category for that? The ten-thousand-limbed-pedes that occasionally amble through aren't an issue. But bugs that crunch... *shiver*

Fourthly: I am reading Elric of Melnibone. I hate him. I hate him and wish that Stormbringer would just behead him and get things over with. What a whiny, melodramatic, self-absorbed albino. Seriously. I hate that despite his frailty when not actively possessing Stormbringer (who for a demonic soul-drinking sword is pretty awesome, actually) he is apparently a sexual dynamo for whom whole plots are resolved by the sheathing of his other sword - the white one.

I think at heart, he is a proto-Elf archetype. My rancor for elves in general (seconded only by vampires) probably make me less than neutral. ET assures me that Elric is intended as a 1960s era foil to the Conan-type Hero. And apparently a hero to the Blue Oyster Cult. But I can't help but believe that if Moorcock had been a better writer (like Pat Rothfuss caliber) it would all come off less contrived. Anyway...

In closing: There is a street fair in Bensonhurst - a feast in honor of Saint Rosalia - that is the fair that never ends. It has been going on for nearly three weeks now. How much church sponsored elephant ears and merry-go-rounds can you have? Apparently more than three weeks worth in Brooklyn.