Heart Attack

I was at CD Game Exchange looking for old NES games when my mother called to tell me my 58 year old dad’s going to have a quadrupal bypass done tomorrow morning. He called me a week ago to say he was home to see a doctor due to shortness of breath. He thought it was either the elevation, or his pacemaker. He went to the hospital today after a mild heart-attack. His angiography obviously didn’t turn up very good results. I’m going to receive another phone call from my mother in the morning, and she’s going to tell me one of two things: “He’s recovering.” or “You have to fly to Texas.”

You Think You Know Someone

I work with a nice guy who makes the best burger you’ll ever taste. Just wants to come in, do this job, and get his check. Always says hi, and smiles when he passes. Loves monkeys, has them tattooed all over his body. He comes to work, does a great job, then he goes home and beats his wife–relentlessly–in the presence of his children.

Ignorance

I was going to come home today and write about how much I hate baby boomers. I had it all planned out, I was going to write something like: thanks for the terminally ill future you’ve handed us–bla bla bla–die already. Then I started thinking about it. As easy as it is to take out my anger and frustration on a generation, the reality is that individuals act of their own will. What I’m really mad at is ignorance, and it knows no age, color, or gender. It grips the brilliant and the dull alike. It washes over space and time, even our technology fails to suppress it. And lumping people together under a blanket of preconceived notions is to share in that ignorance.

Night Shift

Almost every person I’ve talked to about my move to night shifts has told me I’m crazy. “Why would you do that?” I’m asked, or “Did management change your schedule?” I try to explain that I have no interest in management, nor is my body naturally inclined to wake at 5 AM. Why drag my ass out of bed for a job that requires me to do two hours worth of work in one before management arrives, only to be greeted with the same: “Did you get that done?” and “Why isn’t this there?” Every. Fucking. Day. Morning is for all the psychos who’ve deluded themselves into believing they’re going to make it to the top of the ladder, and soar above us lowly paid refuse on wings made of money (and perfectly normal people who just like morning shifts). No. It’s just not for me, it’s a dead end deal, and for a paycheck that only makes it to Thursday, I’d rather wake at a suitable healthy hour, and start when all those people leave. But best of all is the walk home after: the cool air, and peace that comes from a slumbering neighborhood. Stars smiling at my face. Cars whooshing in the distance like blood running through arteries. Headlights flash like cat’s eyes, streaking off into the darkness. Following dim streets home while sipping my Hefe as a train’s whistle cuts through the concrete kingdom–and people think I’m the one that’s crazy?

“Why are you doing that?”

“Same reason I learned to walk.”

“What’s that supposed to mean?”

“It just comes naturally.”

News

The most absurd news in the nation has two leaders. One uses a distorted lens to show us the truth, the other to perpetuate ignorance, stereotypes, social manipulation, and ultimately the slow erosion of democracy.

Topless

A group of women marched around Austin TX a few days ago to protest the inequality between shirtless men, and women who are expected to keep their tops on at all times. And it’s true, it’s not equal, boobies are for babies, but we’ve sexualized them, so men get to run around topless if they so desire, and women can’t in most states. Listen to me please: none of you, men or women, should be topless. I’m glad you think you look great, you should think you look great–that’s healthy–but I don’t want to see it, Jesus H. Christ, we tried the topless thing thousands of years ago and collectively agreed clothing is much better than sun-burnt nipples. Wear a sports-bra, breast feed, I’m not a conservative (same goes for the men, cover that shit up, and if it shuts your baby up let it suck your nipple, I’m not going to judge), but I’m also not going to bother going outside if I have to spend all my time staring at the ground, turning away in disgust, or running away in a shameful attempt at hiding a public boner.

Dear John Deasy

You’re trying to stuff a billion dollars worth of iPads and WiFi into LA’s school system. And I have a few serious predictions about that: for starters, you’ll probably be successful in the end. You’ve hit a couple bumps (read about that here), but it sounds like you might really give a damn about the children of Los Angeles and seem to have good, albeit misguided intentions.

I understand you’ve inherited a mess, and yes technology will help, but it’s most likely going to flop. I think it’s ignoring the real issues. Why are kids struggling this much with school? You can give everyone an iPad, but unless that’s going to somehow pull hungry families out of poverty it’s pointless.

We don’t even know if they’re going to remember half the shit they “learn” playing computer games. Teaching a child to apply theory to the real world should conceivably be twice as difficult if it’s all being learned on a digital application. I should know, my classmates and I used an earlier version of the iPad, the one you shoved a big, floppy, black square in, and by the way I don’t remember any of the shit learned from those games. Nothing, not a goddamn thing.

You know why I did well in school? I had food throughout the day. I came home to parents who didn’t just expect me to do my homework, they had time to help me with it. I was encouraged to read, explore, and imagine.

Deasy, I’m not saying you should bail entirely on the idea, but it’s not the solution to your problems, and ultimately it will fail your expectations if you are indeed as passionate as you sound.

Rex