I'm not your bitch, don't hang your shit on me.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Whipping boy

Some people should keep their opinions to themselves, for fear of an unwanted reaction.

For example, in a recent rant, someone tells me I’m anti-social and have a severe personality disorder, amongst other things. She goes on and on, saying that I am always making fun of friends and family, fat and old people.

Wanting throttle her with my bare hands, I settle on looking at her with pity – bitch has no idea what she’s talking about.

She manages to get simple facts wrong and misconstrues basic information.

False, I am not anti-social; I just don’t care for her friends. And, I don’t have a severe personality disorder, unless you consider being around a bitch like her a negative personality trait.

True, I do make comments about friends and family, fat and old people. But, if this person actually uses her brain for more than filling up her cranial cavity, she would know that most negative comments are about me. I’m my own whipping boy.

Self-preservation of the mind. Self-effacing for the soul.

Even ESL readers realize my stories are about basic functions in my life that I manage to screw up. This life happens to involve other elements – one of them is people. They’re hard to ignore. There are six billion of them in the world. One time, or another, there will be a chance that you’ll bump into one of them.

So what if the people in my environment happen to be friends and family, fat and old people? Should I move? Location, location, location. Would it make a difference? It’s all a matter of circumstance.

Is this all a case of wrong place at the right time, or right place at the wrong time?

Monday, July 25, 2005

Grating expectations

Believing in the good of others is a presumption that I am getting over. Also, thinking that if I am a good person, luck will be on my side – if only for one day. Shockingly enough, I am often wrong on both accounts.

For some reason, people have great expectations with the smallest of things.

While on the phone with a friend, he begins to describe a dinner with a newfound acquaintance. The conversation is a little strained and the company isn’t getting the hint. My friend is looking for the exits, while his date is looking into his eyes. There is no chemistry, but only one person realizes this fact.

Sometime during the meal, his companion mentions if this is their first date. An attractive couple, a nice restaurant, a lovely meal… Hmmm, my friend thought it was just dinner.

Is there a logical step from dining to dating? Where does it go from eating some chicken to picking out china?

Surely, my friend could’ve easily said, “This isn’t a date,” before going out, but why would he? Dinner is dinner, right? Or, is dinner a secret code for dating? Should they have just had coffee, or is that a code for something else?

I don’t know. I don’t speak idiot.

My mind views it this way: I like to eat, I like to go out, I like people, hence, I like to eat out with people. If dinner is equated with dating, then I must have been on countless dates without ever knowing.

But, if this thread of logic is meaningless, then I’m seriously considering a nice, long period of fasting.

Saturday, July 23, 2005

Oops, I did it again... and again

On those lazy days of summer, the last thing you want to do is sit at home. You want to go outside and enjoy the gentle breezes, clear blue skies, and the warmth of the sun. The promise of golden-brown skin is also an incentive. That is, unless, you’re me.

Unfortunately, as much as I love going outside, hot weather doesn't agree with me. Getting all sweaty with no discernable outcome is not my thing. So, doing what any cooliphile would do, I drive. No discrimination against distance. Jump in my car, roll down the windows, throw on my shades, and let billions of dollars of engineering R&D take its course.

While the scenery passes by in a colourful blur, and the wind flutters through your hair, you feel as if something is missing. Music. A good summer song. Something upbeat and uptempo. Pop. After searching through the preset stations, I find the perfect selection: Oops, I did it again. The volume is cranked.

From her first, guttural groans, I know I’m going to be in for a good time. Max Martin and those Swedes know what they’re doing when they craft pop fluff. Aah. While zooming through traffic, and music blasting though the speakers, the next three minutes is all about me and Britney.

I think I did it again…

Singing, while driving, is a symbiotic relationship. Take one away, and the other doesn’t function to its full capacity. And when I sing, I sing loud. From the glass-shattering power ballad, to the gospel-tinged R&B groove, my voice emulates the musical inflections of every singer and song. If I ever have to drive my mother around town, she always sarcastically comments, Why don’t you become a singer? You're always singing. What she doesn’t realize is that I love to sing, but I am not a singer.

But it doesn’t mean that I’m serious…

And, of course, there are dance moves. As limited as my position is in the car, my fingers point, my arms flail, my torso swings, my head swivels, and my ass jiggles. An amazing feat of cheography while remaining contrained in a moving vehicle.

‘Cause to lose all of my senses, that is just so typically me…

After finishing the first and second chorus, I come to the stupid bridge of dialogue where she’s speaking to the astronaut; easily the most inane part of the song. What is even more inane is that my voice drops two octaves when repeating his lines, while tilting my head to the side and making cow-eyes when doing her part in that soft, southern drawl.

All aboard...
Britney, before you go, there’s something I want you to have.
Oh, it’s beautiful. But wait a minute, isn’t this…?
Yeah, yes it is.
But I thought the old lady dropped it into the ocean in the end.
Well, baby, I went down and got it for you.
Oh, you shouldn’t have…

The car stops at an intersection. Red lights. Right at this point, another driver pulls up to me. The car is full of teenagers. Loud teenagers. The multiple voices of overlapping conversations are inaudible. Then, suddenly, they all stop talking.

Oops, I did it again to your heart…

Since I am looking straight ahead at the oncoming traffic, I don’t realize what captures their attention. My sixth sense notices something is off. While singing, I turn my head to the left. They are looking at me. Their mouths are agape. They resemble a bunch of slack-jawed yokels. I see scraggly hair, blemishes on oily skin, a couple of mercury fillings, and a touch of gingivitis on a couple of them. And, don’t get me started on the clothes.

Embarrassment could be a way to handle the situation: my face flushes, I slouch in my seat, and shut the fuck up. But, I don’t. Doing what any entertainer would do, I smile, tilt my head to the side, and wave. And, I continue singing.

Oops, you think that I’m sent from above…

The light turns green and I proceed. As I look back in my rearview mirror, I see they’re still at the intersection. What? Haven’t they ever seen a skinny, white boy singing to Britney Spears while driving? Idiots.

I played with your heart …

For the next minute, I enjoy the rest of the song. I continue singing with no fear of reprieve, or the next intersection. Although part of me cringes to think about how good of a singer I think I am, and if my tonal qualities lapse into pitchy territory (not bloody likely), another part of me doesn’t care. There is a total disregard of the obvious. And, this makes me feel a little naughty.

I’m not that innocent.

Thursday, July 21, 2005


Whenever people are in a hurry, there are always unexpected interruptions that appear. They are unavoidable. From having to endure another painful phone call from your mother, to telling the Jehovah's Witnesses that you believe in Jesus so they can leave you alone, the existence of others are reminders of how an inconsiderate person can be a time-waster.

Imagine my surprise when a simple fling results in a minor catastrophe.

Having several meetings in the same day, I dress up for the occasion. Black blazer, flat-front, grey slacks, black shoes and belt, and a black and burgundy tie. To top it off, a newly-pressed, crisp, white dress shirt.

While running around my place with the bottom half of my ensemble already on, I have plenty of time to put on my shirt. Since it is hot (even at 7 a.m.), I dress finish dressing underneath the kitchen’s ceiling fan to cool me. As I raise my hands over my head, I hear a distinct whoop. It is only when I slide my arms through my sleeves is when I see what the noise is all about.

There is a huge, black stain on my left sleeve.

So, doing what any rational person would do, I freak.

Nooo. No. NO! Fuck. Fuuuckkk! Why? Why now? On the day of my meetings? Fuck. Fuuuckkk!" I yell as I pull at the sleeve.

Knowing I have no time to pull off the shirt, run back to my bedroom, pull another shirt out of the closet, throw that one on without flinging at the ceiling fan, run back to the kitchen, pick up my shit, and leave.

In the kitchen, I pick up the sponge that washes the dishes, run into the bathroom, run some water, wet the sponge, place some soap on the sponge, and rub the stain – with my arm still in the sleeve. Lather, rinse, repeat.

With most of the black streak out, I realize the 15 minutes leeway I had is now gone. Shit.

Although I run out of the house in a panic, I manage to get to the train station on time, although it’s probably due to me driving 80 km/h in a 50 zone.

When I stop the car, I look down at my sleeve and pull my jacket down to cover the remainder of the mark - a reminder of a freak accident and of a freaking idiot. Even I am not immune to being my own version of a time-waster.

Monday, July 18, 2005


What happens when something is taken away that we don’t really need or didn’t think we needed until it was given to us?

Does that make any sense? Well, here’s some clarification.

Being a person without internet access (not to mention phone access) for a whole day can fray nerves. What will I do without e-mail? What will I do without knowing entertainment’s latest gossip? What will I do without my daily fix of porn?

The last one is a joke… No really, it is.

What’s more serious is that with no internet, I have to do other work which I don’t want to do.

Back in the day, while studying for my first degree – which, by the way, is as useful as the paper it’s printed on – in university, I would always find time to clean up my apartment. Of course, this was also the time when I had an exam or an essay due. But, still, cleaning house cleared my mind (just enough) so that I could later refocus on my studies and manage to pass either one of the above with a pretty good grade.

Nowadays, the computer is where I go when I have something else to do. It’s an electronic crutch that mimics a time vacuum. And, it’s addictive.

But, what about the days when there wasn’t the Internet or computers? Television or radio? Cellphones or plain ol' telephones?

We make every latest invention a necessity, without realizing we never needed them before their introduction to society's market. What if they never came along? What if something better appears in six months - as it always does - and makes your last gadget obsolete? What then? What then?

So many questions, so many answers.

And, I am not the one to deal with either one of them because the lines are working again. Yes! It’s about fucking time. There’s a few e-mail that have to be written and some sites I have to check out…

Saturday, July 16, 2005

Calling a bluff

Whether you have a solid hand, or just a moderate one, calling a bluff is a rather important tactic when playing games. Any game. From poker to people, the rules vary slightly, but the overall structure remains the same.

The same can be said when playing phone tag - PT. True, there are no cards on the table, but demonstrating a poker voice becomes imperative.

Being a master at playing PT, the method comes naturally: a set of numbers passes my way and I call their bluff by being the first one to call. Quite often I end up speaking to a machine. They, in turn, do the same. One message here, another there. Back and forth, back and forth.

Whatever. Same shit, different pile.

Knowing that I won’t be able to go to a party later on in the night, we play a little e-mail tag, or ET (a much more complicated concept, with varying rules and regulations – lots of bluffing ensues in a typical game), and settle on a game plan.

“Actually, I was thinking of calling tonight as a surprise, but that would be too cheesy,” I write.

“You know what's funny? I was thinking of calling you tonight from the bar... but I guess it's too cheesy. Oh well,” is the reply.

“Ok, fine. Nine o'clock.” I highly doubt the phone will ring at my house. This game is won.

While I’m not at home for the whole day, I check my messages seconds after I enter my house. There are two hang-ups and a rather annoying reminder from my mother – her fourth of the day.

Then, unexpectedly, the phone rings.

“Hi. Can I speak with Steven?”

Shit. My bluff was called and I lost.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

The first time

No matter how confident you are in your abilities, there's always a sense of nervousness when it happens, when you're put on the spot to put out. Your brain loses all of its basic functions. Your insides turn to mush. Yet, no matter how you feel, you have to take it and give it like a man.

All of this over the first time. The first phone call.

It all begins when a certain set of numbers passes your way. Since the the first step is taken by someone else, it's your turn to follow-up. The ball is in your court and you have to know how to play the game. Don't be an ass and wait three days. They gave you their number for a reason. Call.

How do you handle the situation? Should you be funny and crack a couple of jokes? Should you be sexy and drop double-entendres like a 1940's film noir? Should you just be yourself and act like a total loser and trip over your thoughts and words like a prepubescent teenager?

Decisions, decisions.

Now onto your voice. Should you go for Barry White, although your tone resembles that of Fran Drescher? Not knowing what to do, you settle on your version of Kathleen Turner - a touch raspy, and a cigarette away from lung cancer.

Little beads of sweat form near your hairline. Your eyes squint and dry your mouth twitches. What is supposed to be dry is wet and what is supposed to be wet is dry. Gotta love evolution.

Thankfully, no one can see you. God forbid if they knew what you looked like when you were calling. Who would give you a second glance if they saw you wearing a ratty pair of shorts and nothing else?

Your hand reaches for the phone and your fingers tap on the hard plastic. While one hand picks the handset, the other dials the numbers. From a distance, a phone starts to ring. Someone picks up.


Tuesday, July 12, 2005

The Meatheads of Malibu

Wondering what to do on Sunday night, I turn on the telly, and channel-click to see what sort of crap the creative executives of television have developed with their brilliant minds.

With The Simpsons over, I have no idea what to watch before Family Guy and American Dad - all part of Fox's Animation Domination Sunday. Normally, another episode of the Simpson clan begins before my index finger has the opportunity of reaching for the channel-up function on the remote (not that I'm complaining, since I can almost repeat certain episodes verbatim).

Next up, The Princes of Malibu - an update on Ozzie and Harriet. Uber music producer, David Foster, and his highly-plasticized partner-in-life, Linda Thompson (former wife of Olympic athlete, Bruce Jenner), raise two rambunctious boys. Only these boys are 21 and 23 years old. Oh, and they're meatheads.

For the next half-hour, the viewer catches a glimpse of the lives of music royalty: a compound in Malibu with its own golf course, shelves that bend with the weight of too many Grammys, famous single-monikered friends, and talent coming out of your ears and ass.

But, nothing is ever what it seems. When the cat's away on vacation, the mice will play. And, boy these kids know how to play!

Using daddy's credit cards, they pay for a birthday blowout for several hundred friends. What they don't know is daddy and mommy come home a day early. Then, the shit really hits the fan.

"We didn't choose this life, we were born into it," they say. I'm not convinced. They believe they're entitled. Why? Is it because you're lazy? Is it because you're not talented? Come on! Even Tori Spelling works to pay her own bills.

The real reason why you live this way is because you think your daddy will keep paying for your lavish lifestyle. The only thing is he works hard for the money, and you don't work at all.

So, the compromise is for them to pay their own way, no matter how measly the amount is. Credit cards are not allowed. Expense tabs are a no-no. They whine, they bitch, they complain, and they go back to their ways as meatheads.

Their idea of raising "rent" before the end of the month is by having scantily clad women parade around and wash your car, while they make a profit based on the cost of your ride. Of course, they stand by and do nothing.

When David comes home for a meeting with Chaka Kahn, he ain't happy. In fact, he ain't ever happy. He breaks it up before pulling out a semi-automatic and going Tony Montana on their asses.

Next week's show? Here's hoping it will get ugly and violent!

The beauty of this show is that even the rich have problems. No, it doesn't always involve what to wear and where to eat. It involves the family dynamic, and the power struggles between parent and child.

Of course, I'm just waiting for David to blow a gasket and admit himself into rehab. Maybe he'll bump into Whitney Houston at the reception desk. Who knows? There could be another boatload of Grammys out of their collabortion.

Now, that is a show I'd want to see.

Sunday, July 10, 2005

Get the fuck out of the way!!

Whenever I'm in a hurry, I wait for no one. This is even truer when I have to pick someone up from a particular destination. When I leave the house, I’m calm and collected, but when I’m behind the wheel of my car, I’m crazy and catastrophic - the Goofy cartoon coming to life.

Impatience is a virtue of necessity.

The reason why I'm rushing is that I had to pretty myself up before I left the house. The last thing I'd want to happen is to be stopped by a police officer while looking like a coked-up insurance broker: ratty clothes, hair and teeth that haven’t seen a brush, a few flakes of powder under my nose. A much better idea is to make the effort to appear presentable. In case I’m stopped by the police, I can talk my way out of a ticket/obstacle, without having to wipe away the white residue left behind from too much partying.

Jumping into my car, turning the ignition, and cranking the a/c, I'm on my way.

But, after the first few turns, I arrive behind what will be known as the bane of my existence. A burgundy Oldsmobile Alero filled with old people - they're the only people who ever buy Olds.

On a straightaway where everyone drives at 65, even though the legal speed is 50, the driver (and judging by the tight, white curls, it’s a woman) is driving a tick below 50. Fucking cow. You're impeding traffic! If I could make a citizen's arrest, her ass would be incarcerated.

With her car on cruise control, she maintains the same speed all the way down the street. Luckily, the lane change is up ahead at the next intersection and I can merge into the oncoming lane. Maybe then I can have a little peace.

Approaching the intersection, I feel my stomach muscles tighten. Oh, no. Her brake-lights illuminate. She better not. The turn signal blinks. Oh fuck, no. Don’t you dare! She's going the same direction I am. Shit.

At the green lights, she brakes. Why is she stopping?

"They're fucking green, you fucking cow!! Move your fucking ass, now!!" I scream inside my car.

I see her head looking one way and another. What the fuck is she doing?

"You have the right of way, bitch!! You have the right of way!!" My hands are doing a tomahawk impression. My face is red, and blue veins are popping out of my forehead and neck. Not a pretty sight.

She slowly turns and I follow behind her. I change lanes before she does to try and pass her. While changing lanes, I notice her car begins to waver between the two lanes. She's trying to change lanes without a) signalling, and b) checking her blind spot. No you don’t, bitch! Speeding up to ensure both our cars are parallel with each other, I look over my right shoulder. A gaggle of old ladies.

God, don't they know to speed things up in their time of life? They should know the end is near for them. It's inevitable! You can't fight fate, ladies. And, you better not piss off fate, because he's approaching in a blue car. Do any of you want to meet your maker a little sooner than expected...?

Making sure I grab their attention, I wave my right hand and smile. Then, I turn my hand around, raise a perfectly moisturized and manicured middle finger, and mouth the words, Fuck you.

They're shocked. Or, the ones who can see me are shocked. The others probably left their coke-bottle sized bifocals at the home, or suffer from an advanced state of glaucoma. But, I don't care. By the time my brain elicits a reaction, they are long behind me.

Arriving at the train station, I stop the car in the kiss-and-go section of the parking lot. Except for the situation with the Golden Girls, everything is perfect. Not late.

Then, out of nowhere I hear the digitized voice of a man come over the sound system, "The 7:13 train is delayed ten minutes. I repeat, the 7:13 train is delayed ten minutes..."

Fuck. Why is that no one is ever on time?

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

State of attraction

Falling in love at first sight is a maxim without any merit. True, you may lust for something at first sight, but love, no. Love at first sight deals with physical attraction, not emotional attraction. How often do you hear, "His aura is so hot..." or, "Her personality turns me on..." out loud? Um-hmm. Thought so.

Without having the ability to see something, how can you fall in love with the unseen? Check out personal sites, like mine.

Don't get me wrong, I am not saying people are in love with the site. But, if they don't like cake, they shouldn't stick their finger in the batter.

Do they really stick around for my thoughts on certain topics that interest me? That can be the only logical reason.

They aren't trolling for sex (although there is a lot of screwing over). They aren't looking for any nudity (I'm so much hotter in a down parka and snowpants). And, they certainly aren't going to find anything dirty lingering around (imagine Mr. Clean, younger, thinner, with way better hair and dressed in black).

They don't see anything, but they read a lot. And, they get to know a lot.

They get to come inside of me and see what lurks in the light and dark corners and crevices.

It's personal. It's intimate. It borders on attraction. Sight unseen.

Love at first sight? How about interest at first read...?

Monday, July 04, 2005

A cynic's lesson

Suspicions arise whenever someone does something nice for me. My left eyebrow arches. A physiological reaction. I’ve been taken advantage of too many times. Kindness is seen as an opportunity for manipulation. It’s no wonder why the world makes us cynical people.

Strangely enough, I do little things for other people without them asking. Force of habit, I guess. Don’t get me wrong. We’re not talking about saving the world from the ravages of war, disease and environmental hazards. When I say little things, I mean little things: opening doors for another person, letting someone ahead of me in line, not making fun of people’s fashion choices in public.

These actions are not done for the sake of wanting something in return. Absolutely not. Quite often, no response is given. Whatever their reasons for a lack of response, they believe they’re good ones. They expect action. They expect attention. Yet, they can be suspicious, since sometimes their left eyebrow arches, as well.

Like water off a duck’s back, I let it go.

But, when I see a smile on their face, or hear the words, “Thank you,” something comes over me. Indescribable. No one reaction is possible. It just makes you feel good. Plain and simple.

And, for that, I smile.

Friday, July 01, 2005

It's like ice cream

The horoscope section of the newspaper is always good for a moment of introspection (and a couple of laughs). After scanning for your sign and reading what the stars have to say, you start to reflect on the past few days, or start to wonder what the future has in store for you.

Not wanting to oversimplify what my horoscope says, but it goes something like, You'll find that you will be falling in a way you never expect and when you fall, you fall hard.

Great. Falling hard. Another complication in my life. No matter how many times I try to feel Zen, simplification never happens. It's so frustrating.

Sadly, the horoscope is partially on the mark. I am starting to fall. A little. Why do I feel this way? When I think of you, a smile washes across my lips. Sometimes a smirk replaces the smile. So it seems, it's all about the mouth.

It's like ice cream on a sunny day, just melting through my fingers.
How I like your sugar sweetness, how it always seems to linger...

Why am I doing this dance? One step forward, one step back, one to the left and one to the right. Always ending up in the same place. I never get anywhere.

What is wrong with this picture? It's summer. The sun is out and the weather is hot. This time of the year is all about fun. Shouldn't I be having fun? Should I just shut up and enjoy the flavour?

I'm tired of horoscopes. And, I'm hungry.