Friday, March 31, 2006

End of the week post or is it?

It's Friday and I have found it very hard to write on Fridays. Maybe it is the end of the week and my mind is wondering? Maybe it is the fact that I just ate a rather large burrito and am feeling kind of gassy? Who really knows?

Either way, I would like to tell you all about something that is way overdue. My friends for the past 3 years have been working steadfastly on getting their company, Rivalfish.com, up and running. I am proud of them and have tried to help them any way I can. Their success lately has been astounding and for some odd reason they let me post an article every once in awhile on their site. So please go read it before they realize the horrible mistake of letting me spout my views and "click and drag me to the trash." And by the way the fish make the greatest pets.

Thursday, March 30, 2006

The Fight of the Ages

Note: Homelessness is a real issue that we all should be trying to fix. This is in no way to make fun of that issue.

I was about 7:15 am and I was walking down a hallway in a decrepit hotel in a sketchy part of town. In front of me there was an elevator. As I approached it, proabably still about 100 feet away, a greying, skinny, homeless man wearing a long yellow rain coat and a miner's helmet with a broken light on it popped out of the elevator. He slowly ambled towards me shouting all type of vulgarities in my direction. I kept moving forward though, I had places to be. And he was just old and crazy.

As he approached me he looked up and says, "Oh I'm sorry, I thought you were a police officer."

"Ok" I said, totally confused by this statement.

He then says, "You may go about your business."

So I continued on my path outside of this building. Now if you think this is weird, it's gets so much better. As I exited the hotel to head back to our trailers for the shoot I was on I came across a homeless woman laying half in the gutter, half on the sidewalk. She was rather large, had no shoes but a single sock, and a very large bucket of powdered doughnuts. I assume the doughnuts were how she got so large. She was completely passed out and had remininents of powder doughnut all over her face and hands. It was quite the image and I really wish I had a camera. I left her laying their, because I had work to do and she wasn't bothering anyone yet.

When I came back later I found the old homeless man in a phone booth of the lobby of the hotel. He had the phone in his hand and he was banging it as hard as he could against the glass of the phone booth yet again screaming vulgarities at no one in particuler. I walked outside past the homeless women and was probably about 200 feet away from her when I heard a shreek from behind me.

As I whipped around I saw the homeless man had stolen the big container of powdered doughnuts from the homeless woman. He was shoving them one by one into his mouth as the homeless woman looked on in horror. She then starts screaming at him about how they are hers. He starts calling her a "bitch" and flinging doughnuts at her head. She tried to catch them, succeded in only one, which she hastily shoved into her mouth and then ran straight at him. She lept at him but he side stepped her and she went banging into one of our trucks. He then continued to throw doughnuts at her. All of a sudden she is back in action and grabs him by the waist and takes him to the ground. The fight lasted all of 30 seconds with her on top of him slapping him and then shoving a doughnut in her mouth. When finally the police came and pulled them both off each other. The old homeless man started throwing doughnuts at the cops, they finally threw them both in the back of the police car and drove away.

I'm not sure who won the fight, but it really made for an exciting morning at work.

Monday, March 27, 2006

The 100th Post...Cats and Dogs Living Together, Mass Hysteria!

So to everyone in the theBlogosphere, we made it. We have hit our 100th birthday and I'm pretty psyched about it. Now don't worry were not gonna quit writing now that we have made this elitest benchmark, instead were going to start improving. So feel free to give us any advice on where you would like to see the blog go, so when we hit 200 you can say you had a little part in it.

Now as I was saying with 100 it is time to tell the mother of all stories, it is relevant because I really want to tell you all about what happened this weekend, but to understand you need a little history. So here goes:

When I was 13, I was at boyscout camp in Wisconsin. It was early evening and a light drizzle had begun to fall. I was riding in a van with a couple of other scouts and one of our leaders was driving. We were the back most van in the caravan. As I remember it I was watching the coutryside go by, when I blinked. When I opened my eyes I was no longer in the van but in a room. Everything was white but it was dark, so it all had an eerie glow to it. I was confused, so I went to stand up. At this moment an alarm went off, a red light started flashing, and the most excruciating pain I have ever felt in my life went screaming through my body. I then passed out.

What felt like 24 hours later, but who really knows, I awoke again to a docter and my parents leaning over me. The docter explained that I had been in a car accident. My head had been lacerated(for you lamen, scalped), I had recieved a broken pelvis(which meant relearning to walk), and a punctured lung(it hurt to breathe, laugh, and talk). Not to mention that I had just now awoken from a coma that I had been in for 2 1/2 days.

Yeah life sucked for me, now I really had no idea what was going on, but about 2 minutes later I passed out. Everyone thinks the back wheel of the van spun out on a puddle, sending the van spinning into a tree. The car, from the pictures I saw, was a total wreck. The story the guys in the car with me told was that when the car hit the tree the side of the car ripped off. Everyone was thrown from the vehicle because they weren't wearing their seat belts. Except for me, because I was wearing mine, so I was in the car when it sustained more damage. When the first boy awoke he went running for a farm house to get help, but passed out midway through a field from a deep cut on his leg. At this moment another boy awoke, saw that one pass out and so he made it to the farm house and was able to call for help.

6 months, alot of therapy, in patient and out, a wheel chair, crutches, lastly a cane, and then nothing, I was back to my good old self. Except for the simple fact that 8th grade was a little blurry in the memory department. Kids in math class freshman year would poke me on the top of my head during class, because I had no feeling. So I never knew until the teacher would yell at them. It was great to be a freshman in highschool. Favorite quote that I heard entirely too many times on the first day of school: "Hey, aren't you suppossed to be dead?"

Anyways, I don't think on it alot anymore, other then I have different respect for life, am willing to take some big chances from time to time, and am not afraid of death at all. But this weekend I got a little freaked out. I was with a whole bunch of people I didn't know very well, playing poker. Someone brought up the constitution test they had to take in 8th grade. Since a couple of these people were from Chicago they knew all about it. When they asked me if I took it, I said I don't remember it. Now none of them know about the accident, or have ever questioned me on the giant scar on my forehead. So they kept saying things like, "You didnt take it, everyone took it, you must of taken it, can't you remember?" They just kept going on a and on about it and I got extremely uncomfortable, because honestly I don't remember and I really had no idea their was a constitiuation test. It would have been alot easier for me to tell them all about the accident but I didn't want too. So I just sat there, uncomfortable, because this is the first time, that I really couldn't remember something and no matter how hard I tried to jog my memory it just isn't there.

I know I shouldn't care, but it is something that I will always live with, the year I don't remember. The most distinct memory I have after the accident, is sitting in the hospital with a docter asking me to name all my 8th grade teachers. I then rattled off a couple of my 7th grade teachers and my mother told me that I had the wrong year. So I tried to remember, but their wasn't any memory of them. I really wonder what actuelly happened that year?

Saturday, March 25, 2006

trains, planes and automobiles

i stepped onto the train today at 42nd street, sat down, looked up, and realized there was puke all over the floor across from me. only after i noticed it did i realize how terrible it smelled and how everyone else in the train car had noticed it already and started to migrate to the other side of the train car. it was gross, so i, too, got up and moved to the other side of the train car. i gave up my completely empty bench to sit with some random guy in a two seater because the smell was so bad and the puke so horrific looking. then i got off at 14th street and went on my merry way.

then on my way home, they started the construction early, so i waited for about 20 minutes for the local train to show up at 14th street and then it took about another half hour to go between 14th and 72nd, a ride that would normally take 5 minutes if i had gotten a local train. it was unfortunate. what was worse, is that i had to stand the whole time. i hate relying on public transportation.

the moral of these stories: the train is gross and slow... nothing else.

THE END!!

Friday, March 24, 2006

Scientology. I'm scared, You should be too!


For those that read this Blog you should all know I dislike scientologists. I live in LA blocks from their Church and I truly wish they would go away. Right now I think everyone should go the Jo-tel and read what my friend Hip E. wrote about the scandal between Southpark and Scientology. It is interesting and it shows how a corrupt form of religion thinks it has the power to control what everyone thinks, but we can fight back.

On to my awsome crazy Scientology story. For those readers of the Jo-tel I actuelly published this in the comment's section like a year ago, so you may have heard it before. Anyways, about 3 years ago I was at a street fair in my neighborhood. It is really kind of cool they close an extremely busy street with cool shops and have this big fair with great food, music, and games for the kids.(or me as an adult that tends to act like a kid.) Well, I walked by many booths, but at one in particuler I will never forget what occured there. Oh yeah, you guessed it, the Scientology booth. So this is what happened:

This actor guy, (if you have ever seen the sand lot, it was the chunky kid with red hair) pulls me over and says, " Hey you look stressed out? Why don't you come over and take this stress test." I sat down and he starts telling me to think of anything, and While I was thinking he would watch this meter and then ask what I was thinking of when it spiked. So I sat their closed my eyes and thought about how stupid this is.

The meter spiked and he asks, "What are you thinking of?"

I said, "That time I hit the ball into the next door neighbors yard and my friends and I were to scared of the dog to go get it. So we built this machine out of..."

He cut me off and said "don't be a smart ass."

I replyed, "at least I don't follow a religion created to win a bet." I stood up and left him looking at me with mouth agape. I think I should move, I think I am on the scientology hit list now. The big church is only 6 blocks away and I swear they have a telescope pointed at my house.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

tv,dvd,limewire....

so, i don't watch tv anymore. but, rather, i've taken an extreme liking to downloading television shows and watching them obsessively. needless to say, when people ask me if i watch tv, i still reply with a big fat 'no', cuz technically, i don't... i hate television. i hate commercials, i hate that i have to wait to watch something at a specific time and on a specific channel, all of which i have none of.. channels that is. i think paying for cable is ridiculous, so i download and buy dvd's.

But, i'm not really going to complain about the over priced cable bills, and how much i hate television, rather, i want to praise a few new shows that i have discovered through the wonders of limewire downloads.

ENTOURAGE
: this is the most amazing show. ben and i watched the entire two seasons of this show in less than two weeks. it's only a half hour, and simply jam packed with amazingness. ok, i'm not very good at giving reviews, my comments tend to be vague, but if you haven't gotten into this show yet, i recommend it if not for the plot, but at least for jeremy piven who happens to be brilliant and give an awesome portrayal of the asshole agent, who sorta holds a sweetspot in my heart!!

NEXT,

WEEDS: this show deals with drugs, lots of them. it basically says, everyone smokes pot, and now we are going to show you on televisions that you are not alone out there, everyone else does it too, even rich white folk from the subarbs!!! not only is the topic of the show a fantastic idea for a television show, the cast is amazing. Mary Louise Parker is a remarkable actress, and it's good to see that she is getting the kind of attention she deserves. She plays a subarban housewife with two kids who just lost her husband to a heartattack, and has taken to selling pot to the town. the show discusses how she expands her business and the the difficulties of being a subarban housemom drugdealer. its an awesome show, if you haven't gotten into this, i recommend doing it soon before season 2 starts, which will hopefully be soon, cuz i just finished season 1 and i can't wait much longer for more!!!

oh.. and here's a given:

SOPRANOS!!! i love this show.. and i don't really want to talk about it, cuz you probably love it too!!

ok. i'm done here.. are you happy josh? i wrote something again for your silly blog!!!
-cas

Monday, March 20, 2006

The weekend of whatever...


My weekend was not "The Best Ever..." I wish it had been, but you can't always have the best ever weekend. This is just an exerpt.

There are people everywhere that feel they are better then other people, that the normal rules of society they do not need to follow due to their size and clout. I believe that in order for all of us to co-exist with some sort of peace of mind that some rules need to be followed. They are common courtesy. They do not need the established please and thank you, they just are!

So what happened! Ok, it all begins with a line to the bathroom. I had just watched IU lose in the second round of the NCAA tournament. I was upset, but more of a heart broken upset from seeing my team lose. When I arrived at the line for the bathroom it was rather large. Their happened to be an event (Which was kind of like a Frat party gone terribly wrong) being held at the bar where I watch the games. Do to the amout of Y Chromosomes that occupied the bar the line for the men's room was comparable to that of the line for the women's room at a Broadway Musical. I like most people got in line and waited.

After about 10 minutes I had finally made my way to the front of the line. I was at the doorway waiting for it to open so I could enter the place and relieve myself of the pressure that was building in my lower hemisphere. When I glanced over my should to see a guy, about the size of a linebacker for the Colts, pushing his way through the line. As he approached me he put his hand on the door to open it. I turned full around and put my hand to his chest and said,

"Hey buddy, where do you think your going, the line starts back there." Wher I pointed down the long stretch of people.

He then looks at me and says, "So." In a low voice and began again to push past me.

Now mind you I'm not the biggest guy in the world, my friends will tell you I'm kind of like Rudy from that classic movie, "Rudy." And just like Rudy I have a lot of heart, and sometimes think I am much bigger then I am. I also was at a point in my night where I had a couple, ok many beers in me, and I wasn't happy with the way my team played. I looked at everyone in lines faces at this moment to see how none of them cared either way if this guy cut them. And looking at his shirt I could see he was a big shot from a company that will remain nameless, meaning these people were ok with this guy cutting them!

F&*$ that I thought to myself. So I said as he tried to push past me.

"Open that door and I will drop you right here!"

He stopped and looked at me as I continued, "First I will rip out your juggular and if you think I'm kidding test me A-Hole! This is not the night you want to F&*$ with me!

The whole time I looked him square in the eyes. He then backed up, shrugged his shoulders and walked all the way to the ack of the line. I then entered the bathroom. The people behind me in line started telling me about how that guy was a big wig over at this company and that he can do whatever he pleases. I told them, "F&*$ that, their are rules in a civilized society and he can follow them like everyone else, because I don't care who the F&*$ he is."

I relieved myself and went back to the bar where I proved to my friend I had ultra super vision. Which is another a story for another night, when I don't have to be up at 4:42AM. But I leave you all with this; No matter how big or small you are, you live in a world with all the rest of us, so try to have some common courtesy and don't be a Jack A$$.

Friday, March 17, 2006

A Tribute to St. Paddy's Day

So I awoke this morning and walked down stairs to watch, what else, basketball. I will not be talking about the NCAA tourny here folks, if you want to read about sports go to rivalfish.com(I'll be writing about it there!). I will say before it is too late, what a game last night for IU. They have to start winning by greater margins so I don't have a heart attack before I turn 26.

But as I was saying this morning I awoke with a major jump start to the day. I walked downstairs and grabbed a cup of coffee. But on this day, we do not just drink our coffee black. No, on this day we pour Baily's into it. So I am feeling a little dapper right now, having consumed 4 glasses of this tasty beverage all in appreciation of St. Paddy's Day!

When I think of St. Patricks Day one thing comes to my mind...

McDonald's...You all thought I was going to say beer didn't you. Come on don't deny it, alcohol is a major part of today and it is what you are all thinking of; how later on today you will be so blitzed that you can't remember your name, let alone realize that you are making out with a dog(an actual dog!)at the bar. But for me St. Patricks's day brings with it the most tasty of all concoctions. The only reason to ever go to McDonald's(unless your on a really long road trip or just need something fast).

THE SHAMROCK SHAKE!

Oh yes, that green tinged shake that tastes a little bit minty but alot like pure heaven. I wait year round for the three weeks when I can buy one of these babies so I can hoard as much of it as possible. Honestly I think I gain weight during this time period only because of the creamy goodness. I go to the bar with shake in hand listening to the ooh's and aah's of the crowd. They part for me realizing the splendor I hold in front of them. Suddennly I am double fisting Guinness to my left and good ole' SHAMROCK SHAKE to my right. Decked fully in green(I know I shouldn;t have bought those green designer jeans, but what the hell) I jump on top of the bar, beholding the crowd like a giant green Uncle O' Grimacy. In a drunken bliss I consume both and scream:


Happy St. Paddy's Day Everyone And To All A Goodnight!




Passing out into the arms of all. So everyone, Join hands, make a love train, and go to Mickey D's and get yourself a SHAMROCK SHAKE. Your not truly celebrating this day until you have!

Thursday, March 16, 2006

So, mom was in town the past few days visiting. when telling her students that she'd be venturing to the big apple to spend time with her daughter they all exclaimed, 'oh, we'll be there too, maybe we'll run into you!! how fun would that be??!?!?' to which my mother replied, 'oh dear god...'

My mother is the kind of woman who wakes up at 6 am, goes walking through central park, drinks her coffee , has her oatmeal and reads the TImes at the same little cafe every morning and then some how makes it to the Reebok store to buy new shoes and Colony records to buy new music all before 10am. the energy on that woman never ceases to amaze me. So, having arrived monday and leaving in about an hour, my mother and i just about conquered the world in the three days that she was here.
Immediately upon arrival, my mother took a walk to Lincoln Center to pick up her tickets for some russian symphony she was going to see that night. since ben and i had tickets for Forbidden broadway to see the new segment they'd created on Sweeney, my mother had made other plans for herself. My mother has taken a liking to the fact that i've moved uptown. she has found herself a nice little hotel a block away from my apartment on the upper west side, and enjoys the fact that it only takes her about 10 minutes to walk to lincoln center from there. Letting my mother loose on lincoln center is like letting a child free to run around a candy store with a one hundred dollar bill. My mother can't go into the Juilliard bookstore without dropping her jaw and squeeling with excitement, because really 'you just can't get this kind of stuff in chicago!!' she goes to Tower records and buys all the new musicals that she's only heard about, but must own. she goes to barnes and noble just cuz it's there.. So, on this beautiful 60 degree Monday, ben, my mom, and i had dinner at a nice little italian place in teh neighborhood we stumbled upon and then went to our respective shows.
Tuesday: i decided 2 o'clock was probably a good time to meet up.. give her a chance to explore a little, waste some of that excess energy, before meeting up with her. I decide to go walk with ben to meet his sister at Lenny's, a little deli near the apartment, that ben has actually never been to before ever. as we are walking i call my mother to see where she is so we can meet up.. as the planets would have it, my mother is sitting in Lenny's drinking her coffee, eating her oatmeal and reading a book. i mean, of course she would be at Lenny's, of course Lenny's would be my mother's favorite place on the planet to go in the morning, and of course that was where we happened to be headed.. i mean, why would it happen any other way. so we meet up with ben's sister and her baby, say hello, and then my mum and i quickly bolt out so i can take her with me to bed bath and beyond. i mean, what are mothers good for if they can't spend money on you while they are visiting, right??? this part of the story gets kind of boring, we shop alittle, buy some stuff.. my mother freaks out a few times when i step out into the middle of the street just as the light is turning green.. but other than that, boring.
That night we go to see Jaques Brel is Alive and Well and Living in Paris, at the Zipper theatre. a little offbroadway house that has made the inside of the theatre look kind of like something out of RENT.. the seats are all old movie theatre seats and car bucket seats.. its cute and quaint, my mother absolutely adored it. oh i left out the part where we decided to buy up the Godiva store.. so we are currently at this point in time, carrying around about 5 pounds of chocolate. my mother, like me, has never learned the value of savoring something and not eating it all at once, so while we waited for the show to start, we stuffed our faces with all the dark chocolate we could get our hands on. unfortuantely, the best part of the show was the chocolate. to my mother's dissapointment this production was nothing like the show she had seen so many years ago and reminisced about so fondly.
WEDNESDAY: this entire day was devoted to seeing theatre. we saw Color Purple in the afternoon and Light In the Piazza in the evening. Unfortunately, (and i was much more dissapointed about this than my mother) LaChanze was out during the matinee performance, and she is kind of the REASON you go to see COlor Purple, but, lo, the show was fun, my mom liked it, and we had really great orchestra seats right in the middle, row m. then we had dinner with ben and giles at ruby foos in times square. a friend of ben and mine was working, so we got free dessert.. picture a piece of cake about the size of my 5 foot tall mother! my mother was so ecstatic to be having dinner with the three of us! she said we were the three people she loved the most in new york, adn was so honored to be spending time with us.. my mother gets very dramatic when she gets excited, but this is why we love her. oh right before dinner we stopped at urban outfitters to buy a bag for me. taking my mom into urban outfitters as a teenager always embarrased me, but now, i just kinda get a kick out of it. the uber hip sales people don't really know how to handle her, she runs around, criticizing everything, and finding some cute stuff, saying she had things like that when she was younger, my favorite was when she picked up a bag made out of a carpet and told me how she had one just like it, but they fall apart too easily so she wouldn't let me get it. ANYWAY, so we went to see light in the piazza after we were done with dinner and taking loads of pictures so my mom could remember her favorite dinner ever! unfortunately, another dissapointement for me, victoria clark was out that night, and we saw her understudy, who was also very good.. but whatever.. my mother still enjoyed it. i felt bad, cuz two things i took her to see had understudies.. i guess that's what you get for going to see broadway shows on wednesday!!!
so, after the show, i walked my mother to her hotel and said goodbye. she gave me a slew of encouraging words, telling me i needed a mantra, and that i need to keep positive, life is hard, but i need confindence adn i'll be fine. she really is a wonderful person at knowing how to keep your spirits up. i look up to my mother, i only hope that as i age, my spirits will stay as shiney as hers. that everyday is a new adventure and find all the excitement in everything, even buying a new book of music!
so, the supershuttle has no doubt picked her up by now, and she is headed to newark to catch her flight back to chicago. i know she is so happy to have had a wonderful time visiting, it makes me glad to know that it doesn't take a lot to please her, and i think this week just about made her life!

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Leap of Faith

All day long I have been working. Working, working, working... And at my computer no less. So when I procastinate I start reading peoples blogs. I'm a fiend for them. After reading people I know well and people I don't know well I have determined everyone has the same problem. No one can sleep and everyone is dwelling on something they need to change in their life and they don't know how.

As I write this I am listening to Rent on my computer. Yeah, I like musicals, I'm a guy, and I don't play for the other team. It is just what happens when your sister and your mother are musical fanatics. Well I'm listening to Rent and the song "Over the Moon." Leap of Faith ladies n' gentleman. That is the moral. We need to get out their, get out of our comfort zone, take a leap of faith and make a change in our lives. Now it doesn't need to be a drastic change, it just needs to be a change. It could be wearing a color shirt you never wear, or maybe going to that restaurant you always pass by, maybe it is quitting your job and trying something new, taking a trip, walking up to a stranger, telling someone that your falling for them. Whatever it is, whatever that something your not telling people what it is that is keeping you up it's going to take a leap of faith to get through it.

So what am I going to do your probably asking? Well, for those of you that know me also know that over the last month I have been wrestling with the problem of having to move. It has really been bothering me, because I love where I live. Everything for a moment started to fall into place. Because of a leap of faith I took, by talking to the people who came to look at my house to rent it(yeah I was the scary guy for a moment) I have become their third roommate and get to stay!!! Because of this the money I saved for moving is just accruing interest. I am using it to take a trip, someplace far away. Western Europe to be exact. I'm going to travel for a month or two by myself. I have never done this before but I figured why not. A leap of Faith to see if I can make sense of this world by leaving my comfort zone and going someplace else.

So good luck to all, damn my posts are getting too serious. I have to start writing something funny, but first enough with the procastination back to work!

Monday, March 13, 2006

Julian Krupa, the man, the legend!


While looking for an apartment and starting to take some steps I think in the right direction of figuring out what to do with my life; I was reminded that many people (all people) have made these steps before me. My roommate reminded me that I should look at my past and see how the people who mean the most to me moved through their lives. One of these people was my Grandfather. He died when I was 10 years old, but the memory of him will always be with me.

My most distinct memories of my grandfather take place within his little house on the southwest side of Chicago in a little town called Summit. I was sitting in his house and Grampa Julian yells out, "Stickler, come here I want to teach you something." I ran into his drawing studio that he had set up in one of the backrooms of the house. He sat me down in a chair next to the giant drawing table he had set up. The room was a caucophony of drawing materials. Charcoal in one corner, A giant tower of colored pencils in another, and a huge light that illuminated his work space. He looked at me and asked, "Stickler, what do you want me to teach you to draw?" Being only 7 years old, my mind worked rapidly and I yelled out, "A piano... ... ... Dropping on someone's head!" I burst out in giggles. He turned towards his pad and I watched intently as he grabbed a pencil from his stack and started drawing. His eyes never waivering as he took simple lines and shapes and turning them into a large grand piano. Then he drew a small man underneath it looking up in fright.

Julian Krupa was an artist and a musician. Extremely talented at his crafts and always working to better himself. He was a violinist, playing with the A & P Gypsy's at the Chicago's World Fair. He also worked for Ziff Davis as one of their Illustrators. He did cover art work and illustrations for many pulp comics and magazines including the pulp comic "Amazing Stories." Years after his death my family was at "The Museum of Science and Industry" in Chicago for the pulp comic exhibit they were showing. It was an amazing exhibit with some fantastic art work. The highlight was seeing some of my grandfathers illustraions in a kind of renewed spirit hung up on the walls. My mother's highlight was finding a lunch box that had the same cover art on it as the original painting that still is on display in our house.

According to my Mother, my Grandfather attended the Bauhaus School of Design. One of the most prominint art schools in the world at the time. He was forced to leave when World War 2 broke out and was sent back to the states where he joined the marines. According to my Mother he was injured in the war and sent back home where he reclaimed his old job at Ziff Davis. He also had a radio show out of his basement where he played timeless music and did a kind of variety show. He then left Ziff Davis to work for Wilding Picture Productions, where he did contracts for the U.S. government. My Grandfather did all the illustrations for the training films for the first Nuclear Submarines and was a friend to Admiral Rickover. And then continued to do early training films for NASA. After Wilding was bought out, my Grandfather ended his career by working for Radio Shack, doing marketing on sound recording equipment until he retired still doing illustrations.

Knowing that someone can accomplish so much in their life gives me hope that maybe my life will turn out the same way. If I just keep setting goals and living life to it's fullest. I'm not sure what he would say to me now, I wonder if he would aprove of allt he choices I have made so far? Regardless I will always remember him sitting in his living room playing his violin or be it sitting at his desk sketching another masterpiece. These memories I will always have with me.

Friday, March 10, 2006

Some things you all should know...

I have been reading this blog for the last couple of weeks...Much ado about somthin! It rocks, read it!

IU beat Wisconsin this morning in the first round of the Big Ten Tourney! I know I am amazed too! But go IU finally playing with some prowess! Read my article about it at Rivalfish.com. Also buy some rivalry merchandise, the fish make great pets!

The girl from last weekend didn't call me back! I know, none of you remember what happened to me last weekend, but I met a cute girl. I'm a nice guy, I may have been drunk! But what could I have possibly done to cause her not to call me back. She gave me her number. I called her! I left a message.What could I have done wrong? Should I call her again?

If you haven't read the comments section on the Jo-tel I reccommend it! It is better then the blog this month!

Ok I have apartments to look at now! Have a great weekend everybody!

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Chuck Norris Facts you don't want to miss!


When I opened my e-mail this morning I was greeted by the same plethora of e-mails I recieve everyday. They are always funny and keep me on my toes, that is what happens when you have really funny friends who want to be writers. Today I got one from my friend Colin, who is a teacher at a University somewhere.

"Chuck Norris does not go hunting because the word hunting implies the probability of failure. Chuck Norris goes killing."


One of my students just wrote this on the board and walked out of class after finishing his midterm exam. Is it from a movie or standup routine to anyones knowledge?


That is classic! That guy must have balls-of-steel to put that up on the board. I mean everyone knows that Chuck Norris is an amazing man, but to put that on the board after an exam, Awsome! I just hope that kid aced his midterm.

I started thinking about it though, what crazy things did I do when I was in college? Which brings me to the story of the day ladies and gentleman. Does anyone remember when Brittany Spears was huge? I'm not talking obese like now, more like when she No. 1. Yeah it's hard for me too. Well, McDonald's at that point in time was giving out something pertaining to her, for all I know it was a replica doll or something. My roomate from College Chris and I were moving into our new house and stopped their for lunch.

Now when your in College your kind of a clepto. Seriously all you people who attended a University will agree with me that if it was something you couldn't buy and wasn't nailed down(well, sometimes nailed down), but would make your house or apartment that much cooler, you would just take it. I know you all did, try to prove me wrong? For example; beer signs in bars, street signs, those straw dispensers, etc...

Anywho while taking all of our stuff out of storage we stopped across the street at a Mickey D's. Chris had his monster truck with him(it was really just a normal pickup). While waiting in line we both noticed the scantaly clad Britany Spears card board cutout next to the register. Well, Chris remarked, "Stickler I need to have that, it would look great in the new place." We both sat down at a table in a empty McDonald's and ate our lunch, Chris eyeing the cut out the whole time. Seriously it was starting to freak me out, his mind turning while looking at it so intently. As we got up to leave Chris throws the key's to his truck at me and says, "Hey, I gotta use the restroom. Go start the car and pull it up to the door!" I catch them midflight and say, "Ok!" I could tell something was about to go down. Roommates have that bond where they can read each other's minds at moments of great peril.

As I get into the truck I realize that it is stick and I don't know how to drive it. I start it though. All of a sudden Chris comes crashing out of the door with a large cardboard cut out of Brittany flailing in the wind over his head. I have never seen him hall more ass then in this instant. He is screaming something as he lofts her into the truck bed and jumps in the drivers seat. He then asks out of breath, "Dude! Why didn't you pull the truck around?" I say, "I don't know how to drive stick, are they chasing you?" We both look at the door to the restaurant, but no one has followed yet. Chris speeds off and get's stuck in traffic directly in front of the store. No one came after us though and for 2 years we shared our living room with Brittany!

Depression, you pray on us, when we sleep.

Ok, maybe Ben Harper sang the song a little differently. Regardless I have never been this depressed in my life. I feel like the world just crumbled around me. So I came up with a way to get out of it. For a long time now I have been considering taking a trip, out of the country, to see the world. So that is what I am going to do, but honestly I have no idea where to go. So people of the blogosphere, where should I go? What should I see? Who should I meet? Anyone got a couch they want to let me sleep on?

I know this sounds like I am running away, but I am not. If I was running away then right now I would be flying to Chicago, back to where I came from. In reality all I need is a change of pace. I need to figure out what makes me happy and live a little life while I still have some time to live and am still young enough to enjoy it.

But this is only one step in the process of making me happy. The second step is changing my job. I am 25 and I realized that the goal I set out a long time ago to get to in my career I will actuelly succeed in reaching. Great you say, well I also have realized that I don't really want to get there anymore. In fact I really don't even want to do this job anymore, I want a change. I have been thinking about the military. My family does not want me to do this. Why you ask? Well because they, like all my friends, see this as a way of getting killed for a cause that is not worth it. I see it as the way for me to serve the country and give back to a place that I dearly love. I may not agree with the president, but I do agree with what we are doing over there. It is our fault and we have to fix it. Unfortunatly the one thing I don't want to do is make my parents scared for my life, so this probably won't happen. Maybe I'll become a helicopter pilot, I find the machines fascinating. I've been seriously looking into the FBI as well. Well, anyone got any comments to help me in my time of need. I put it to you people of the blogosphere, where do I go next?

Monday, March 06, 2006

OPRF alumni invasion or let's go break some kneecaps!

Our past is what defines us, makes us unique, seperates us from the the schmucks and nobody's of the world. Our past is something to treasure and hold on to which brings me to the story of my weekend!

The guys I grew up with in highschool are some of my oldest friends. Guys who will always be their through any heartache or strife I encounter. It was a huge surprise for me when 5 of them all for different reasons showed up at my doorstep this weekend. The group consisted of Tello and Jonah; they were in town for a buisness meeting for the company they are starting. It continued to get better when the next day; I get a call midday from my friend PETE; he was in town for an interview to be a staff writer on a blog. Then while eating lunch we get a call from Eddie; who happened to be in town for a buisness meeting and was looking for something to do. Well since there were this many people we called Fuller; he lives in San Diego and had him drive up to meet us.

We started drinking about 4pm. We all have grown and matured, but the one constant in our lives is when you get this many guys from OP togeher, everyone has a tendency to drink out of control. Kind of like we are throwing a party in the woods back in highschool. Only nice part is we are old enough not to get busted by the cops. At least not for underage drinking.

We drank a lot and told stories of the past, conversations picked up right where they were left off years ago. My friends are uproarously funny and have a tendency to create more drama then most, but I still love them. After making fun of each other for foibles of the past, we headed to the bar a block away from my house for a drink and dinner. We were all drunk by this time, and it wasn't even 7PM. Nothing really happened at the bar other then some pitchers, burgers, and wings. We then took off to the fabled, "Brass Monkey" for kareoke and merriment. This is where everything starts to get hazy but I will do my best to recount the events as accuratly as possible. Someone has to for histories sake!

We arrived at the Monkey around 9:00 PM and were seated at a table in the center of the big room. The place was already crowded which is unusual for the Brass Monkey so early in the night. We got up and drunkingly sang. We kind of took over and then things started to get a little sour when the DJ cut me off just as one of my songs started. He did this for no apparant reason at all except to tell me, "Stickler, you have sung enough!" Then we ended up kind of barging in on songs that a birthday party was singing. This is when PETE accussed me of cock blocking him. But as I remember it her friend told me too! Then Fuller and Tello dissapeared. According to everyone they went home, which made no sense because they didn't even know where I lived? Then we got our bill which was a whopping $460 dollars and consisted of tons of drinks that we never got and ended up having to pay for. In turn Eddie got pissed because it was all on his card and started screaming at everyone at the top of his lungs, "I'm breaking Kneecaps, I'm pissed off!" Then I had to pull everyone outside while they were pissed at the whole situation to get a cab. Now this is when Eddie starts getting really pissed, Jonah and PETE were trying to calm him down but he starts stomping around. There was a guy puking against the side of the bar who turns towards Eddie's tirade and says, "Excuse me, but could I get some privacy!" In which Eddie replied, "F&*# your privacy, I just got screwed, do you want your knee caps broken!" Eventually we get a cab, and it takes us back to my place where we find Tello and Fuller passed out on my couch. I ask Fuller how they got home and he says, "Well, see I passed out outside of the bar and Tello found me. Then a cab passed by and we decided we were in no shape to stay so we got in it. To be honest I have no idea how we were able to get back here. I think we just kept pointing out landmarks to the cabby?" Then Eddie continued to scream about breaking kneecaps for money. And then passed out on the floor. Everyone went to bed for the moment at about 3:00 AM.

I awoke at 7:00 AM to my alarm; I went downstairs and woke PETE for his interview for the blog job. Yeah, he was hungover and had to go to an interview. Eddie had crawled into my bed and everyone decided they would make the cross town trek with me to Brentwood. Hungover, badly in need of sleep we drove the 40 minutes to Brentwood sans Eddie. We pull up at a mansion, where their are lots of cars. PETE turns to all of us and says, "Oh my god, look at all the cars. I'm screwed." then steps out of my car shaking his head.

I turn to everyone and ask what they want to do while we wait. We get breakfast and then end up renting those three wheel trikes on the beach. We raced them up and down the bicycle path. At one point we had a race in a beach parking lot, it consisted of Fuller flipping over and Jonah's chain breaking. Then Tello and I had to tow him back to a bike guy to fix it. We then picked up PETE and headed back to my place. Where everyone proceeded to sit down and have the conversation in the post below.

All in all it was an exciting weekend. Insane, but fun. I miss all those guys and I am still trying to figure out how come we didn't get in anymore trouble then that, I guess were all just getting old.

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Capture a Moment in Time


In Stickler's Living Room sat Stickler, Tello, PETE, Fuller, Jonah, Eddie, and The Captain!

Jonah: Tello? Would you rather have a retarded father or a really smart chimp taking care of your baby?

Tello: It depends on if the chimp was trained!


In the midst of a 10 minute debate about would you rather have a retarded father or seeing eye dog take care of your baby. Seeing eye dog won becuase it can lead and pickup things with it's mouth.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Boyfriends, Sushi, and Debbie!

So today I had this girl at work, the same one who has been on set on three different occassions flirting with me. Well, at least I thought she was flirting with me, so I'll let you decide. She would come over and stand around me and make small talk. She kept making fun of me and she kept looking at me when I wasn't near her and then turn her head quickly when I would catch her. To me these are sure fire signs that someone is interested. So I would flirt back! I finally towards the middle of the day asked her if she had any plans for the weekend. Her answer was, No, nothing at all. I said, "Well why not?" Her answer, Her boyfriend that she lived in a one bedroom apartment with was not making any money so she was supporting the both of them.

Now back up a minute, Key word: Boyfriend!

So someone explain to me, someone please explain to me, why was she flirting with me? Especially if she had a boyfriend? I don't get it folks? And while your at it, why does every female that I am attracted to, already taken?

So Debbie and I had gone out a few times and then I got a gig on a tv show that took over my life. 6 months to be exact, great job, taught me everything I know, but killed my social life. The whole time I only talked to Debbie on the phone, but we really became just good friends. So when the show was over, I called her up and said, "Debbie, It's been forever what are you doing tonight?" She was meeting two of her friends in Westwood for dinner and invited me along. I had no idea that this was about to be one of the craziest nights I have ever had in Lalaland.

I met her and this guy, let's call him Jason, in Westwood. We got cookies and ice cream at this awsome place, and then kind of went walking around playing with things in stores. I was wondering if she was dating Jason, till her friend Tim ran into us in one of the stores. He was gay and Jason started making passes at him. So yeah, she was definitly not with Jason and to my knowledge single. Now the thing about Debbie is she was really outgoing, but very closed with her emotions. So it was always really hard to get a reading on how she felt in a certain situation. The two guys walked to one side of the store we were in andshe pulls me over into the corner and says, "Oh my god, they both like each other, we have to take them someplace else and see if we can hook them up.

Now loyal readers, I have never hooked two guys up, but I guess this is something Debbie does all the time. All that was running through my mind at this point was, wow, Debbie looks beautiful tonight, I really need to hang out with her more. And then all of a sudden we are all standing in the center of the room and she is explaining how two weeks ago she ran into this guy on the street. His name was Howard. Well, Howard invited her to his birthday party. It was at this place called, "White Lotus" in Hollywood. Now none of us had heard of this place since it officially wouldn't open for another 6 months. But somehow this guy Howard had invited her to this place for his birthday. Well I wasn't about to let her get away, so I figured why not, I'll help hook up her gay friends with each other and maybe score some points with Debbie.

Now is when things began to get really weird. We pulled up at the White Lotus, which looked entirely empty. All of us in t-shirts and jeans. We actuelly all looked pretty sloppy, well Debbie could never look bad. Anyways she walks up to the maitre D' and says, Hi, I'm Debbie and these are my friends. I know were early but were here for Howards Birthday Party!" the woman looked at us and said, "well ok, umm, we don't have the guest list out yet, but you can come in and sit at the bar." So we walked in and started drinking free alcohol in an empty bar. We started joking around, and I think they forgot about us at the front because all of a sudden people started arriving. We kept drinking and suddennly platters and platters of free sushi were being brought out. We started talking to all the people who were really dressed up for this party. We were so out of place.

Now the entire time the two gay guys were hitting on every single woman who walked into the bar trying to get more girls then the other one. It was impressive, I had no idea gay guys can score so much. I spent the entire time hitting on Debbie, falling for her every second. Then all of a sudden we were approached by a guy with glasses. He walked up to Debbie and asked who she was, She said, "I'm Debbie, were friends of Howards, the birthday boy." The guy looks at her and says, "Oh, Hi I'm Howard, the birthday boy!" By this time we had consumed roughly 500 dollars in sushi and probably 100 dollars in free drinks. So what a surprise that we had all crashed Howard Balaban (The owner of Paramount) Birthday. Howard liked us though, becuase we wern't like his other guests so he let us stay. So Debbie started talking to him and then went off to sit at Howard's Table. The two gay guys sat down next to me and said, "So you really like her?" I answered "Yeah, I wish I had persued this better when I first met her." That is when they informed me that Debbie was hard to read and I shouldn't give up. The guys kept drinking margaritas with me and then left me by myself. They went to the bathroom together and didn't come back for a half hour, I'll let you use your imagination. Debbie came back over to find me sitting by myself. She looked at me and told me she had alot of fun with me that night. But she was going home, she had to wake up early. She gave me a hug, kissed me on the cheek and walked away. That was the last time I ever saw Debbie.

So you ask, why didn't I tell her I liked her. I don't know probably becuase I figured a girl like her wouldn't like a guy like me. When she went off with Howard I figured I had no chance. So I made a mistake and I regret it. So now whenever I eat sushi I think of Debbie, because she was the person that I had the best free sushi I have ever had with. I think of how if I hadn't been striving for the stupid career that I am still striving for maybe something would have started between us. Maybe that night I would have had the balls to say something. That maybe now I wouldn't be stuck in the state of conufusion that I find myself in now. If only I could go back to when I first moved here and change it all.