Saturday, January 21, 2012

What It Takes To Get A Modern Man Through The Day

Lord knows it's hard as the day is long hammering away at this game of life, grinding it out in one of North America's infested sprawling metropolises, and sometimes I need to take the edge off. I need something else to get me through this semi-charmed kind of life; something to chisel down the edge of the blade. So here's to another day! I lift my glass to you, or swallow another pill, or light another cigarette, or maybe all three. At once. Without these crutches you can deal me out--I don't want to be a part of this game any longer.

The tobacco company, Peter Jackson's, should really hire me as a PR guy. I'm passionate about the product. Much to the chagrin of my neighbours, I rarely if ever smoke outside. I want to enjoy a PJ  comfortably and leisurely, inhaling and exhaling luxurious plumes sitting at my computer. A smoker has an inherent mystique, it's undeniably cool in some way thanks to all the cool people who smoke. There is an ancient seductive art to the way a red lipped woman purses her lips and slowly, with lithe fingers, takes a hit, cocks her head and blows a jet stream out into the atmosphere. Can you spell hot? All these anti-smoking groups are teetotaling tittie sucking fools. Look back a generation or two: Were the 1950's-80's not a magnanimous, smoker friendlyepoch in the 20th century? Smoking on airplanes, in malls, in offices. Smokers' freedoms weren't eroded like they are nowadays. Shit, back then you could make out with your girlfriend, a smoke dangling precariously from your lips.

Smoking indoors is best primarily because there's no wind. The cigarette burns symetrically and I'm overcome with a placid calmness, mesmerized by the hot glow of the cigarette, burning down proportionate to the drags, followed by the soothing feeling of a silky mouthful of smoke streaming through my nostrils. What can I say? It's my yoga. 

What it takes to get a modern man through the day (The Morning Regiment [TMR]):

Loratadine...10mgs (allergies.)
Cigarettes...limit of 5 until 5pm.
Coffee...2 cups max.
20mgs of Adderall (not my prescription, never done it before; just experimenting.)
10mgs of Cipralex (anti-depressant, my prescription.)

And to keep the train moving through the evening (The Evening Regiment [TER])...

Beer...3-4 pints.
Finally to top it off...the never ending Glory of God.

I sat down with a pencil tucked behind my ear, drowning in spools of calculator paper with clusters of scribbled out equations, and added it all up: 

Tim Tebow Me.

This cacophany of substances coarses through my blood and I'm facilely transported to the next truck stop on the highway of life where there are decisions to be made and things to get done. Or so I'm told.

I'm thinking of getting a cat. I love cats. I'm a total cat guy. I'm into lazy, snuggly, furry things that require little attention. I have somehow, despite all my pure evil and hatred of the world, still evolved to be overrun by their cuteness. It is a perfect relationship: with minimal effort cats are sustained and happy and gracious with their love, and in return I get an inter-species friend. But I'm having trouble pulling the trigger. I'd take great care of it, of that much I'm sure, but the following through is difficult. I just know that I'll pick a kitten based on it's cuteness, the ahh-shucks factor, and then I'll find out after a week or two of co-habitating, once she's alone with me and her true personality swims to the surface, she's, in fact,  possessed by the devil, hissing and biting me, or is mildly Autistic and hard to read. Well, I'm sure the thing will be okay. My only hope is the animal doesn't mind cigarette smoke. 

"I'll take a smoking cat, please," I proudly declare to the Humane Society person at the desk.

Hey you there, wagging your finger--I had a cat once before. Damn thing inhaled my mother's Du Maurier Milds and my father's Rothman's and occassionally my Du Maurier lights for nineteen years. She probably couldn't run a marathon, but most cats can't. Cigarette smoke isn't really that cruel when you read all the other horrific shit cats, and animals in general, are put through by their owners: physical abuse, neglect, et al. Oh, how I loved my little Ruffy! I would wake up on Sunday afternoon's and wearily stride down the stairs in my boxers to find and pet my kitty. She was always in one of five places, and eventually I'd find her, behind the couch or under a living room table. The longer it took to find her, the nicer our snug-fest would be. I laid down and placed my head on the fluffy lump of her body; not the full weight, that would be too much, of course. I strained my neck and my head was free to snuggle into the white cottony bliss of her belly fur. In this position I could hear Ruffy's inner workings, swampy gurgling's and bubbling's, a factory of organs at work. My cat would purr quietly, regally, a look of satisfaction across her face but eventually Ruffy would grow tired of my face in her fur, hiss and/or swat at me. She was a princess, no doubt. The kind of cat who wouldn't let you touch her paws or rub her belly. If you were a stranger or infrequent guest at my house forget about petting Ruffy! She was no whore! Absolutely not! She was like that skinny golden haired popular girl in high school you could only dream of getting.    

Once Ruffy and myself happened to catch each other while she was about to drop anchor in her litter box, which was like a nice little shit-house complete with roof and all. She looked me right in the eyes as if to say, "you can watch me, but only this once." There was no question--from that day on I would always decidedly walk on, gaze fixed forward (not that I didn't do that before). 

I have a new show idea: Next on A&E: Cat Hoarders. The sad thing is you'd watch it.  

I must admit, somewhere deep inside me, the scientist/experimenter part, I can't help but wonder what it would be like to give a cat some of my Cipralex, or some coffee, or some meth. Now, don't get all righteous on me, all you animal lovers for I am one of you. Even if you're a raging addict, there is some kind of simple pleasure to be taken in denying another sentient being the possibility of addiction. My cat will not become a totally out-of-control, dentally ravaged half-tard meth-head, for I can still control it's intake. I'm the judge and jury. It's rehab for you, Tweaks! and my cat, lost in a narco-fog, but if we're lost in a fog, we're lost in a fog together. I've already named her: Blixa. I can see her now prancing around my apartment, lithe and goddess-like, but simultaneously I feel sorry for the poor thing. For there is only me to keep it entertained. Me to help it through a tough day, me to be a shoulder to cry on. I don't really need that kind of pressure in my life. I'd always have to be on. I can't be expending all my precious social energy on non-humans. Plus, it can't be that great of a life living with me--can it? 

It must be a female cat. That is imperative! There's no way I'm waking up and cuddling with a male anything. My nightmare is lying there in bed about to wake up, lost in that twilight period before clarity reels my sleepy head in, and I'm thinking about that hot chick at the LCBO giving me a slow, sensual blowjob, taking her time with it, cupping the balls and everything, and then it feels a little rougher and rougher, like sandpaper, "Ohh...Allison...I like it rough," and just when I'm about to reach the point of no return, I look down and there's Ernie licking the head of my penis. Ain't gonna happen to me, pal.

This has nothing to do with anything (I jump around a bit, you'll get used to it). While driving home today from the bookstore, a young light skinned black girl, maybe mulatto, in her cute little jeep, was trying to make a left from a little side street onto Bloor and her stupid jeep was jutting into the road so that myself and the motorists behind me had to slow down. We have a green light and she's forcing us all to come to a screeching halt while she tries to bypass our double lane into a clogged up eastbound lane. I try to switch to the left lane to avoid the front end of her jeep but the cars just keep a comin'. I'm forced to idle and will now miss the light.  

My car's spedometer swung down from sixty to zero and my pyschometer went from zero to sixty all in the matter of a few seconds.

I resort to motioning with my hands to back up a little. I do this condescendingly, like you would to a petulant child, or a half tard. When she looks at me confused, like I don't know how to drive, or live my life by her rules, I yell out, "Move back you dumb fucking cunt! Gee-whiz, lady, back it up a yard or two for pete's sake!" 

And if she couldn't hear me, I made sure to enunciate each syllable, like an enraged Michael Buffer. She looked at me, shocked, unable to fire off a retort of any kind, only a blank stare of incomprehension at the aggressiveness of man, at how wholly putrifying their violent response to provocation is. Indeed, I feel ashamed at what I'm capable of, of what men in general do to the Aphrodites of the earth. I'm so sorry to all the in particular. This isn't the way I really treat women. It's really not. But she did eventually put the jeep in reverse so I could pass by, whether out of fear or pity or what, the jury's still out.

No matter what it takes to get a modern man through the day, the day invariably gets through with itself. The planet rotates around the sun through space, endlessly blathering about on it's axis, while I whirl through cyberspace, but I could still never commit suicide. My idea of committing suicide is taking an extra anti-depressant pill and waiting to see what happens. Two, three, four pills? Are you kidding me! I'd be waaaay too fucked up. The way to do it, apparently, is to commit suicide like Joe Bodelai--the comedy writer who killed himself recently. A little older and washed up, living out in L.A., he may never have even made it in the Toronto Star, or his death merely reduced to a simple blurb, but he left an intriguing bullet-point suicide note on his blog, detailing the things he was proud of in his life and things he regretted. It was actually quite touching and funny, with the whole macabre angle (this is a suicide note) adding another juicy layer of intrigue. He was Alcoholic. No surprise there. He really did it. Killed himself by drinking Gatorade and anti-freeze. Gatorade and anti-freeze? In our darker moments I'm sure we've all thought of ordering a double G&A from the bar-keep, no doubt, but efffawhh, what's the minute after you chug that down like? Any potential last moments of regret are swiftly rendered obselete by the poison in the belly (why did he choose anti-freeze in particular?).

Any day now, we'll see a commercial from Gatorade, and instead of  the requisite scenes of men behaving athletically, a bunch of ball players dribbling on the court, or hockey players doing some slappers and then gulping down a refreshing mouthful of toxic sugar water Gatorade, it's a man in a robe, sitting alone at his computer in bad need of a shave, with an empty pint glass, first pouring in the gatorade, the camera circling around with lots of quick cuts; it is a blurry mess of action, then he pours in some anti-freeze, and lookout sports fans, it's a stiff one. As the man brings the glass to his lips, a bassy, faceless voice chimes in: Gatorade--It quenches your thirst, and your suicide.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

A New Chapter (In My Blog)

I have made a big decisionNo, I'm not having gender reassignment surgery...yet. Rather, a new chapter has started in my life while my head is still buzzing from the bells of the new year, like a swarm of angry Africanized bees. My world has been rocked, and if this were the big leagues, my coach, performing a post-mortem for the media scrum would vaguely announce that I have 'concussion-like' symptoms and I'll be out indefinitely, for today I have quit my job of five years.

Everyone always tell me, "You have to have a back up plan before you quit your job." While I understand this concept in theory very well, I failed to implement it. I understand a lot of things in theory but do not implement the knowledge and practicality therein, so I have to listen to people (good naturedly, of course) explain the concept of work. Too much work, I say!

I bought a new pair of shoes the other day (I was still employed), which is no small victory. Must have visited twenty different stores.  A shiny pair of white Lacoste's. When I buy shoes I invariably think to myself, I'm not a -------- kind of guy, am I? My last pair of shoes were Diesel's. Now just going on shoe selection alone, one might think I'm a pumpkin-coloured pumper of fists, but I couldn't be farther away from Tha Shoar, aside from my shoes.  

I'm now sandwiched into a liminal phase, post old job and pre new one; a murky world of endless career potentials. If I can't decide on a pair of shoes, how the hell am I going to decide on a career though? It's a crisis of sorts, no doubt. Figure it out, dummy! That's what your brain is for. Focus on your skill sets. Hmmm...I can say words backwards really well...

rolyaT tibseN. That's me.

asluT. That's Tulsa, OK in case you didn't know. I would tell that to Oklahoman customers on the phone; they usually thought it was funny--if they were younger and male.

"Did you know that 'Tulsa' backwords is 'a slut'?" And we share a little chuckle, and then it's time to get down to business. What are your measurements? Where are your specs? Your shopdrawings? Your photos--they work best. But I won't be telling that to any Oklahomans anytime soon will I? Americans love it when Canadians say, 'No doot aboot it!" Warms the cockles of America's collective beating heart. I don't think it's funny either, but you can't argue with laughs. I'd hyperbolize it, of course. Not too many Canadians really say 'doot' and 'aboot', it's more like a 'boat' sound, but apparently it's funny when hammed up over the phone to a semi-stranger. That's the key, you have to be strangers or it's not funny. If I say, "Noo doot aboot it!" to a fellow Ontarion, they'd look at me like I have a two-headed dick growing out of my ear, but you already know that. 

I had a whole repetoire of stock phrases, phrases which I will never (hopefully) utter again. A part of me will miss my American bretheren. Say what you will about Americans--they're fat, xenophobic, hillbilly rednecks eating McGrittles in their SUV's, but by and large they're good people. Take it from me, I've seen it first hand. I talked to them for hours every day. Shit, I know Americans better than Americans do. Or at least I did. They want to do right by their families and make an honest buck and God bless 'em for that. At first, I was shocked that Americans, mostly in the Southern states deferred to me as 'sir'. The American South is so cordial! I'm no Full Metal Jacket general, I'm just some kid, and now forty year old Americans are deferring to me a 'sir'. I was only sleeping, hard-wired into the dream that is America. But I'm tapped out. I've cut the cord.

One day a locksmith from Florida, West Palm Beach to be exact, lost it on me with almost no provocation. Admittedly, I can be a prick on occasion: Condescending, arrogant, short, patronizing, unhelpful, but this time I was none of those. He just went ape shit because I could not provide a quick, simple answer to his simple question. He couldn't fathom that it wasn't that simple. There are multiple options of which I was trying to politely explain. 

"It will only take a minute," I said.  

"I just want the price of a goddamn gate for a door!" He screamed at me like an axe wielding maniac. I will typically react in one of two ways to difficult people, and I will be so kind as to give you a simple answer: Unfazed or Crazy. You wanna get nuts! Let's get nuts! I can be that guy, but with this particular case I was unfazed. I prefer to match wits or insults, it's very cathartic to call someone a 'dumb motherfucker,' or a 'cock-sucking infidel' but I can't really compete with a seizure-like fit of rage. The guy's filibustering me. I depress my index finger on the volume button until the level descends to a tolerable pitch, and just let him go. I think to myself, as his vitriol spews through my VOIP connection, (that's Voice Over Internet Protocol): America must be really scary with guys like this and easy access to all those guns. That's why Cops will never be cancelled: It is a renewable resource. Whereas sitcoms and reality shows stagnate after a few years, Cops never runs out of material.  

I took out the business card in my wallet, the one I keep in case I lose it, the break-glass-in-case-of-emergency card so that a good samaritan can call me, and tossed it in the trash. The last vestige of my former employer. Where do I go from here?

For a brief while I will enjoy my new found freedom. Wouldn't you? I've celebrated the first week of my unemployment by being a total wastoid. Through the mist on my currently calm seas I'm hoping that I'll see land, or at least an island where I can dock. But I can drift for at least a couple months and live comfortably, with beer in my belly and a warm bed at night. The world is my oyster! I don't like oysters though. I'm the king of the world! Or something like that. I will take a sledge-hammer to the frozen sea of the job market!

Perhaps I'll blow off some semen--I mean steam...go to a strip club, plop myself down on pervert's row, and crane my neck up at the naked women preening about the stage on vertiginous heels. The pleasures of the flesh are always there for you in times of need, like a dog. To sit amongst the sleeze balls with their fixed gazes, silently tuned into their own private thoughts hidden behind their thousand-yard stares, oblivious to the pulsating strobes around them.  

"Baby, you got an hour glass figure," I would coo into the ear of the dutiful stripper on my lap, "and I want to play in the sand."

I would not think about job interviews and office politics with Gia offering me a nibble on her suckle-berry breasts. I'd enjoy her company with a Moosehead in my hand and Kickstart My Heart ringing in my ears. This is an escape. Our very assimilation--commercials, vacations, stripclubs, shopping, etc., relies on the notion of escape. But why do we need to escape so badly? Why is so much effort put forth toward it? What are we escaping from exactly? I can't really stand strib clubs, it's the men not the women. Or maybe it's the sharing of women with the men. Who wants to ogle the same woman as twenty other guys? Forty eyes engaged in the ocular gang-rape of a young woman who happens to be afflicted with beauty and not much else. Thanks, but no thanks. Imagine all those boners she has to sit on every night--Yuckers! 

I must get back to the business of making money for the coach to keep me in the game. What am I doing here typing away, pussyfooting around? There's a lot at stake here. I have to pay the bills. It's all about money and that's what I want...that's what I want. It's more important now than ever. You know, it's kind of exciting--I hoard the pennies in my coin stash, I ration out my soaps, creams and deoderants, I carefully tear two squares of toilet paper at a time for my bottom, I am diligent in turning lights out. I'm fucking Greenpeace over here.  

I haven't eaten the stockpiled cans of Campbell's soups stored in my nether cupboard regions, beyond the easy reach of everyday use, but that day may be coming. I had planned to donate the whole lot, about twenty cans, expiration dates all well into the fall of 2013, (apparently Campbell's doesn't abide by Mayan time) to the Salvation Army, but now I, of all people need them. Precious, precious cans. In a month, like a peasant, the savings account sucked dry, I will painfully slurp at the disfigured vegetable or chicken noodle soup before me, which is imbued with an unearthly orange hue topped with yellowish specks of just-this-side-of-edible detritus floating on the surface. How incredibly unnatural! No wonder there are so many cancers, heart attacks, tumors, respiratory failures, diabetes, BAD JOBS, lurking around every corner. Look at what we eat for Chrissakes! The convenience of efficiency is the king of this land. It just never fucking ends.  Quicker, QUICKER, man! Quickly Nezbit, get back into the relentless machine of economical commerce! It's your duty as a citizen of Ontari-ari-ari-o to contribute, to work those fingers to the bone for it. Or else. Or else what I don't really know. Maybe end up in that dungeon in the old abandoned farmhouse in Pickering that was discovered recently. Did you hear about this? A brand new 'containment' room found in an uninhabited, hundred and fifty year old house. A room, 12' x 8' complete with chains, multiple locks, glass too thick for a crow bar to break, four jugs of water sitting neatly in a row by a white, clinical bench. What was going on, or about to go on there? To quell public fear, I heard on the CBC that the police put forth the notion it might be a movie set. Yeah, right. Saw VIII. Sadly, we may never know because the house burned down sometime during the night of Jan 5-6th of this year. Somebody trying to get rid of forensic evidence? Hiding something?   

So anyways, *cough* please hire me.