The house is almost done. Just picked out ceiling fans and a backsplash.
Work is going well. We are all exceeding expectations, though I can't say I'm at all surprised.
The temperature is falling.
Movies are getting better.
Bowling scores are way up.
Mini-golf scores are way down.
I've had dinner 3 times with a girl at work I like. And each time has been very pleasant.
My sister had her first date and her first kiss.
My brother tried to commit suicide but by taking a lot of Molly. Which is kind of like trying to drown yourself in an inch of water; you can do it but you've gotta want it. But he's alive if still an idiot.
My other sis is being a lot more communicative. And she loved 'Perks of Being a Wallflower' which she should.
My book proceeds slowly but surely.
'Dishonored' wasn't as bad as I expected it to be. I actually feel like I could play it again.
Honestly? The only thing there is to complain about is music. What the hell are they playing on the radio these days? Play something that isn't on a television commercial!
That's it. Life is good.
And, normally, I'd expect something horrible to happen right about now. Like when the music cuts out in a horror film.
We come to a fork in the road. And I've no idea what lies at the end of either path. And I've got a week to decide.
In the movies, this decision would be like clockwork. Oh, the guy offering that job is obviously evil. He has a mustache. But life's a lot more pragmatic. Or maybe we just tell ourselves it is so that we can feel better about some of the awful decisions we have to make.
I'm skewing dark. Like the second movie in a trilogy. The funny thing is how upbeat I am about everything. Like I honestly feel that it'll all work out alright. Except there's nothing worse in the movies than when the last film of the trilogy drops the ball. If I had to guess, I'd say I'm at the beginning of part 2...but I don't think that necessarily means I can afford many more mistakes. Most people my age can plan a week ahead... although not many could define cognitive dissonance.
Yeah, cuz that's a reliable measurement...
I almost want the world to end in December. Like curing a rat infestation with giant spiders.
SERIOUS SPOILERS FOR DARK KNIGHT RISES. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED.
So I imagine there's probably more important topics to talk about but I'm gonna talk about Batman! I saw the stupid thing last night...and before I get too far into this, yes, there is a little bit of fanboy rage in here but mostly my issues stem from logistical problems. Maybe I should say what I liked first to engender some goodwill here: the fights, the explosions, the opening sequence, Anne Hathaway, the amalgamation of the stories from the comic books, and the small part that Scarecrow had.
Now, onto the crap. There was just too much. Too much going on. Too many problems. If it had just been the sort of Knightfall storyline, then fine. But there was just too much shit. And Robin. UGH. First of all, why would he let random people walk into the side of the mansion where he lives? Then, Catwoman cracks an uncrackable safe. So why does she need the "clean slate" program? Even if her skills aren't good enough, wouldn't she probably know enough people in the underworld to maybe be able to do effectively the same thing? It was a ridiculous plot device that I found really distracting. And where did she get all of her equipment? He's a fucking billionaire and she's got equipment at his level? And her shoes were stupid, too.
Not to mention the two characters that I knew who they were when they were cast. Talia and Robin. UGH. And him discovering the cave? Bruce had years of training by ninjas and gotten his ass kicked in the streets of Hong Kong or wherever. Robin's had six months of police training and been a detective for five! There is no way he's prepared to be Batman! He's going to be killed. He's going to die. Totally unnecessary.
And Alfred just leaves?! What the fuck?! If Alfred left, it would've been for a reason other than "my feelings were hurt". Was that scene supposed to be funny? Because people were laughing.
And Marion Cotillard. She bothers me. I think it's her voice and how she always looks like she's smiling. I loved her in 'Midnight in Paris'. Hated her in this. Not entirely her fault, though. There is literally no other character she could have played in the Batman universe. And speaking of voices, Bane had the strangest cadence I've ever heard. I've already got my impersonation down so I can make fun of it later.
Now to specific scenes in no particular order: when Batman reappears and he blacks out everything with an EMP, why didn't that affect the little wireless gizmo on the motorcycle? Why wouldn't the SEC just reverse all the transactions which were obviously fraudulent? How the hell did Gordon survive the fall locked in a tiny metal crate but Talia was killed? How did no one find the Bat on top of that building? Why would you use a leafy camouflage tarp in a fucking city? Why did Bane fly all the way back to that prison with Bruce? How did everyone know exactly how long the bomb had left to go? How did Bruce get all the way back to Gotham with zero resources? Who ran that prison? Did the doctor guy work there? If not, then why would he bother trying to fix Bane? Can a broken back heal in five months? And why didn't Bruce need the electronic brace thing when he was in the prison? How the hell did he paint that giant bat signal on the bridge? Did that take a long time and, if so, then why bother doing it when he should've been looking for the bomb or Catwoman or literally anyone or anything else? Are the only people who don't know Bruce Wayne is Batman just too busy to have really put any thought into it? Didn't Bruce do a background check on Miranda? Did it bother anyone else that he left the mansion to both Alfred and the boy's school? Are they now sharing the house along with whatshisface down in the caves? And if the mansion was entirely rebuilt, why did everything look the same? Shouldn't there have been updates? Especially to the batcave, which was just a couple of giant, submergible metal blocks behind a waterfall? Why was Gotham still so clean after five months of no city services? Did people still go to work? Were they hurting for food? Why did everyone's clothes and faces look so clean after five months of no utilities? Is there a power plant on the island? How did Batman know where Gordon would be when they "exiled" him? Oh, God, they just keep coming: if the thing on Bane's face was there to relieve pain, how did it work? Did he have to replace the cartridges of morphine or whatever? Couldn't Batman have just hit him with an anti-narcotic so it'd have no effect? Where was Bane while Bruce was originally training with the League of Shadows? Where was Catwoman? Where was Talia? Was sleeping with Bruce part of Talia's master plan? If Applied Sciences was off the books, how did Bane know where it was? Did Talia find out somehow? So Blake guessed at Bruce's secret identity? Why didn't Bruce just say, "No, you freak, you're mistaken"? Did they ever show what Catwoman's ears/goggles do? Why was she so good at driving the Batpod? Obviously, Batman faking his death was a spur-of-the-moment idea he had so what was the original plan? Just disappear with the girl who was the ENTIRE REASON HE WAS ALMOST KILLED and live happily ever after and hope no one bad ever looks for him? How many days in a row did those two go to that freakin' cafe in wherever waiting for Alfred to show up? So they're magically in love now because her most recent act was loyal? What about Catwoman's little buddy? Whatever happened to her? In fact, why the hell was she in the movie at all? Because the movie was already 2 hours and 40 minutes and just needed 5 minutes more? How pissed off was Christian Bale when he saw this? Did Gordon seem really overwrought in that one scene where Bane was reading the letter? What the hell accent was that that Bane had?
And on and on and on...I'm so freaking disappointed...sigh...
I expected it to kind of suck...just not that much.
A really tense feeling. I mean, it certainly doesn't help doing things that feed into an emotional relapse but, then again, if I didn't know any better, I'd think that maybe I was normal. But that can't be. Right? Because, if I'm not different, then I'm not special. I don't have an Oscar and I probably never will. Have I only lived half a life? Must I have a child? You, in the skirt! Let's get married because apparently that's what the hell they want from me next.
That's what you're supposed to do.
Then there's finding the reason. Sure the desert was no picnic but you learn from everything. Like to always have a weapon on you. And to never ever let your guard down around the people you think you trust. Because either it's an illusion or it's not or you've convinced yourself that it's not real to anyone. Except you. If that makes sense. Who are these people that make someone crazy? They're your friends. Girlfriends. Family. These are the people you trust. These are the people that know all of your secrets...and now you never speak.
What did you do to make them all go?
It really didn't have to be this way. You could've trusted me. If the theory is true, then there is a universe where it all worked out. I'm with her. Or her. Or, God forbid, her. In a house that is still standing. Everyone always calls back. And my children already resent me, though they're a week old. Look at that. That was fast.
There is no reason at all. Either you're a dumb animal or you aspire to be something more. There is no in-between. I am not going to do this. Something is supposed to happen. Any minute. Any second now. And one day you don't care anymore and your house burns to the ground. Congratulations! You are now a better person with nothing to show for it. And right back where you started.
Fuck, what I wouldn't give to have you here right now so I could tell you everything that's happened. But why would you? That's being vulnerable. And you suck at that.
Lord, if I die without any of this ever having made sense, you are gonna be in some serious shit.
Because, in my mind, that's not what adults do. They handle their problems with grace and poise, seeking outside help when they need it. They handle their shit and they don't drag anyone down with them. Except that's a lie.
Hardly anyone does that. Sometimes, maybe. Not often. If we did, I wouldn't be laying here, slowly driving myself crazy. Maybe that's faulty logic. Actually, it's not even logic at all. There's no point in planning. It'll all go to hell again at some point. After tonight, I think it could be soon. All we can do is keep our heads down. Like those nuclear bomb drills. Because those desks were sooooo protective.
I am so unbelievably jealous of people who are doing what they know they want to do. Actually, I'm just jealous of people who know what they want to do. But, wait, I AM doing exactly what I want to be doing. What the hell? So what am I upset about again?
And there's no point in saying it. Or telling anyone. Because neither solves the problem. Fine! I derive all pleasure out of life through the eyes of other people! Happy?! And since I am absolutely the cause of my own unhappiness (other than the fire and consequences thereof), then what am I trying to accomplish by writing this down? Going to sleep genuinely happy and not just because there's nothing wrong.
I call this a life. I'm not so sure it is.
Wait, here it comes...the Winger speech to bring us home:
Six seasons and a movie!!!
...It may not always be easy. In fact, most of the time it might not even make sense. But the important thing to remember is that you should be remembering something important, something that you cling to like a wake board in a malfunctioning wave pool, something that makes you want to wake up every morning and say bring it on.
Now, if you'll excuse me, I have cupcakes to make.
I feel like I should buy a helmet. And wear it. A lot.
So, let me just check to see if I have this right: zombie apocalypse, nuclear winter, polar shift, and now, taking me completely unawares, comes the theory where we're flung into outer space. Self-fulfilling prophecy is a real thing, people. See the patterns. Try to fight the programming. We can be more than animals. Gas mask, solar flashlight, and now a padded ceiling. What psychological damage is being done by all this thinking? It's not healthy.
In The Fisher King Jeff Bridges asks the crazy guy sitting on his lap, "Did you lose your mind all of a sudden or was it a gradual process?" The answer takes us nowhere.
Slllllllowly trudging our way forward. Avoiding phone calls. Knowing what happens next. Sick of being right. I mean, come on. Geez...
I don't know. I can't sleep. I still feel off. Very little makes sense.
And here's why the ending of Mass Effect 3 made no god damn sense at all: there's no fucking way Joker and the rest of the Normandy crew, upon seeing the imminent destruction of the Citadel, would take their opportunity to jump however many light years away, leaving Sheperd behind. And another thing! If you set up the entire premise of a trilogy based on your enemy being unstoppable, unfeeling giant monster robots from space, don't throw in a whole other conflict at the very end that only existed peripherally through the rest of the series. Synthetics vs. Organics was not what I carried away from all my talks with Legion, Tali, Kasumi, EDI and all the others.
Yeah, that was disappointing. Glad they're changing it. Woosh. Laser. Kapow. This isn't difficult fellas. Bioshock's ending took a year off my life despite how stupid the boss battle was. It can be done.
Just an all-around feeling of disappointment. In people. In pursuits. In dreams. I had a dream the other night where my stomach was punctured like a balloon and started draining acid everywhere. That probably means success in business or something.
Maybe my body is not letting me sleep for a reason. Don't sleep. Dawn is too near.
Shit keeps happening and it won't stop. Plus I have a lot of really funny observations and the dog just looks at me. I think sarcasm may be beneath him. So far the largest anvils have yet to fall on me. And virga is the term for when rain or snow evaporates before hitting the ground. Seemed appropriate.
Very tired. Very annoyed with everything. I wish I wasn't but there we are.
In my closet, there's about a quarter of a wall covered with post-its, all covering different things I want to include in this book thing. They're even color-coded by importance and category. Me. Color-coding. Still establishing characters' quirks and wrinkles. Movie night is now a bi-weekly fixture after only minimal nagging and I don't even have to bring the food next week. This week it's 'Joe Vs The Volcano' and BLT's. We have no theme. I'm finally making progress beating that effing Sigur Ros song on Rocksmith which means my guitar skills are improving. Maybe an acoustic is better to learn on than electric? I don't know but it sure is working. Cooking is by far the biggest struggle. That and going out. I don't know why. My level of respect for chefs, though, has grown considerably. The upgrade from bologna and cheese to deli meat and cheese and lettuce and tomato and turkey bacon and Dijon mustard is pleasantly jarring. The house rebuilding is well on its way. Today (this moment) I want to live in a place that's completely my own. It's either that or aimless wandering and while that appeals to me unimaginably well the practical side keeps reminding me just what a pain that would be to actually live. Not that I can't escape at any given moment if I change my mind. I freaking hate exercising but I'm doing my best to keep up with it. My legs were so sore one day, Dexter pulled me down a hill during a walk. I laid there and smoked a cigarette. It was a nice day. There have been a lot of those recently. There is progress being made. There is art decorating the walls. There is ample seating. There is surround sound. There is music. There are books. There is wine and the correct types of glasses to drink it out of. Not to mention the Patriots lost.
No, that can't be right. There has to be something wrong. There's got to be.
I wrote that last night. This morning I found out my uncle had a heart attack and no one told me. And then my dad asked me for $10000. There's the rub. What is wrong with these people? I'm starting to realize that none of my family really helps me, except with a few bucks in times of need. Never asked for 10 grand, though. This is what happens when you start assessing if things are good.
All this because of a windy day. Fucking hell. It reminds me of a line from High Fidelity: "John Dillinger was killed behind that theater in a hail of FBI gunfire. And do you know who tipped them off? His fucking girlfriend. All he wanted to do was go to the movies."
I can feel those eyes opening in the back of my head.
None of the colors were correct this morning. I believe I'll stay in.
I'm in a documentary mood today. We started with "Kill Your Idols", which was about how punk music in the past relates to early 2000's music. They didn't call it punk and sneered at the mention of The Ramones but, in the end, everyone was just trying to do their thing bc that's what they liked to do. The old-timers were upset they weren't original enough or maybe just because the new kids didn't sound like they did...which was fucking nuts. Although I liked it. Most of it. Amazingly, I already knew "Teenage Jesus & The Jerks" but none of the other ones. Well, except for the "Yeah Yeah Yeahs" but I'm not sure they belonged there. One of those "Goo Goo Dolls/Sex Maggots" stories.
Next was "The Cove". Effective but not affecting. I don't know. Maybe I'm desensitized. Basically, a lot of dolphins were being killed by this small group in Japan and the doc was about the guys who tried to get footage of it. I'm always torn in these instances. Especially when it's the filmmaker putting himself in the documentary. On the one hand, yeah he's working hard to get the message out but...there's DVD sales to consider, that's all I'm saying. Maybe not in this case. Maybe he gave all the profits to some dolphin charity, I don't know, I haven't done my research. But in the overall...
Now I'm rewatching "Food, Inc.". I'm always struck by the part about corn. And then I think about how, if we stopped eating cows, the methane percentage in the air would skyrocket from all of their shit. God, that's not cynical at all. Get a grip. That's right, breathe and continue. Maybe these aren't the best background noise to a semi-comedic literary undertaking. I say semi-comedic because it all derives from truth, but arranged in a colorful way. Better than a quote book, worse than a movie. But life is long.
Oh, and I watched two others last night: "Gonzo" about Hunter S. Thompson and "Exit Through The Gift Shop" about...well, it's supposedly about the "underground" art scene but really it's about this idiot. Or at least that's the way he comes across and is portrayed. I know it's incredibly easy to criticize but I hate it. I hate how people who are doing something, if not original then original to them, are always always exploited by the idiot who's better at marketing. I had an argument once with (sigh) let's call him an artiste (strong strong emphasis on the e) about the motivation behind street artists' work. My view is that it's all advertising. They want to be noticed for their work and not for who they are. But they still want to sell. Not sell out, just sell. Who the fuck doesn't? We all gotta...geez, that meat looks gross...sorry, still on "Food Inc". Anyway, his argument was it's all noble and only about the work and blah blah blah, forgetting (conveniently) the fact that we had just come from a gallery where his work was hanging, big ol' pricetag at the bottom. Fish gotta swim, birds gotta eat. Don't forget it.
Tonight, I eat dinner with the family. Can't wait to see what happens when the check comes around. So fucking mundane. Yesterday I was at a party in a closet tripping on salvia. I saw my whole life laid out in front of me like a movie and everything is gonna be freaking awesome. Then we played "You Don't Know Jack" between 4 people and 2 controllers. There, am I social now? "So glad to see you out and about" they say. If only they knew. The city is no place to survive for those of us with addictive personalities. Feels like I have a hangover even on the days when I'm sober. I'm going to start updating my every location and meal to facebook, see if that shuts them up. If only people weren't so awful, says the recluse.
A lot of fear and loathing all around. Still, though, generally optimistic...
(as the bombs fell)
A road trip. This time I, with the help of my trusty sidekick, Jesus, will find the American dream...at some point in the near future. Coming soon. Under construction. To be continued. Seriously.
A new year and it seems I'm slowly adjusting to this new world/body/mind. The only problem with it all is that I'm the narrator and, while I'm stuck with him, it does mean that often there are these long, uninterrupted breaks of dialogue where I'm arguing with myself over what I've just said. And, just like the idiot hero, managing to say the last line of the argument out loud. Usually an "I'm sorry" or "For the love of..." confusing any within earshot. Because, oh yes, this happens in public now, too, which I'd like to think looks more like a romantic comedy but probably comes across as more survival horror. I don't make these rules but god do I try to live by them.
Sean Bean has just walked into the room. He stands in the only shaft of sunlight. He's got such a great voice. And I wish I had his hair.
Sorry, I'm in the middle of this movie called "Black Death". It's about the plague but I'm pretty sure they're going to have to kill something or take something from one place to the other. Your basic B-movie/video game logic. Holy shit, was that Ray Winstone? He's worked with Scorcese!
...IMDB says I'm a liar. And I can live with that. The men on screen are off to fight a demon. God, I'd love to have something like that to do. But I have no demons, dragons, spirits, or any other malevolent beastie I need to slay. Other than this...I don't want to call it anything, because then it becomes that and if you call it a book, well then just go ahead and blow my head off right now. Because there's no way that that is a viable way to live or do anything else, really. Absolution. Many words have more than one meaning. I'll tell you it's strange being back in this city where I have done nothing but misbehave. And now it's 2012. Wouldn't it be nice to have a woman to misbehave and have adventures with? We can't have it all. Yet. One morning, I'll wake up and it'll all be bananas and strawberries and I won't even be able to connect the dots from here to there.
Just keep going and don't listen to the naysayers. We begin over and over again. It's all wits, skill and how much luck on any given day. And any and everything with a happy ending to get you through the shitty parts. No new information. No definite plans. A ship but no star to steer her by. My default position.