Saturday, June 07, 2014

Better Late Than Never

Jesus, when's the last time I wrote anything on here? Roughly a year, I imagine.  Something about "HailStorm"?  Funny thing about hail storms... they're intensely interesting, completely engaging, but in and out in a flash, leaving you with only a handful of quickly liquifying and disappearing mementos... save for the damage wrought.


In giving her that name, I quite unwittingly predicted that one.  Hindsight is indeed 20/20.  I'm 35 now, staring down my 36th year of life here in a few short months.  I'm tempted to say that not a whole lot has changed, but honestly, quite has in the form of a sudden maturation which the swift kick in the emotional nuts that said HailStorm's totally unexpected departure has induced.

In the meantime I've gotten yet another low paying job at some factory producing little metal and plastic widgets... but I'm strangely ok* with that. I've since been promoted and have stepped up to the first rung of the proverbial ladder.  I've actually embarked onto, and have managed to fool myself into thinking that I'll actually complete, a new college education toward a degree in network engineering.  Don't get excited by the "e" word... it's not real engineering like electronic or mechanical or chemical. It's just basically being the IT guy.  But photography having failed me miserably, I figure my other love and fascination (which I should have pursued in the first goddamned place [again... hindsight]) will be slightly more blue chip and able to weather economic turbulence.  Plus, with a foot in the door already, and this being a global corporation, I'm ready to whore the shit out of myself for a job that pays a bona-fide living wage over the basic survival wage I'm making now, and have been for my entire life up to this point.

OK, Ok, ok... in a nutshell: Got dumped.  Learned.  Grew.  New job.  Promoted.  New leadership responsibilities.  Am the best fucking Line Leader that my new company has ever seen.  I tell my peeps that I'm the "Trojan Horse", fighting the shitty system from within.  I lead with everyone in mind.  My girlfriend Laura says this is called Servant Leadership.  I like that.  It's my job to promote my fellow worker homies and our production lines, and make sure that they have the proper resources to manufacture the shit that makes our company money.  We're all in this together, man!

It's not difficult.  It all boils down to one basic concept that somehow seems to leech out of leaders' brains a little bit more and a little bit more with each step they take up the ladder:

"Don't be a dick."

There.  That's it.  Sum total, end-all be-all of supervision... the Alpha and the Omega of being a non-douchebag supervisor.  I don't care if you're some fucker hired off the street with a shitty attitude making a wage which amounts to little more than a slap in the face, or some top level manager who has completely lost touch with the realities of the struggles of blue collar life and thinks we give a SHIT about your stock options... just don't be a fucking DICK.

We're all in this together.  It's up to us to either make our work days and work weeks, if not fun, at least tolerable rather than miserable. 


Oh, yeah.  This past January, having learned a hard lesson and matured logarithmically, I met a damned fine woman.  Her name is Laura.  No cutesie blog nickname.  Just... Laura. Unless she unveils some massive and yet unforseen personality flaw, she's the one.  :-)  I know, I know, I know... I say that about every one that I meet.  This time I've waited six months to say it, not six days.  Yay, growing up! 


* I had initially typed 'okay', but realized that I'd broken my own cardinal rule of never spelling out the word 'okay'.  It's not normal how much that irritates me seeing it spelled out phonetically like that.

Thursday, July 04, 2013

The Tempest

(shortly after midnight, July 4, 2013) Author's note: I apparently wrote this some time last year, post August 25 (because I'm still 34), but never finished the post and promptly forgot ENTIRELY that I was even keeping a blog.  It is, for reasons not only tragic, but even more tragic, less tragic, and then wonderful enough to reaffirm my faith in humanity in a way dually child-like and in a wisdom I sense to be well beyond my grasp (yet...), woefully outdated.  Read on anyway, because simple vanity will not allow me to delete such a piece of prosaic... prose.  Enjoy!:


According to the dashboard, this is my 1600th post. Woohoo!  Who'd'a thunk that a humble midwesterner would have so much to say?  Certainly not me.  It's a nice thing to be able to surprise oneself. Who knows what other treats I've laid in waiting for my future self, like rainbow and confetti bouncing betties?*  Thus is the beauty of the process of late-life maturation, and even the "big L" Life itself, to the garden-variety simpleton such as moi. I embrace such unexpected startles.

So PoF girl and I have become a bona-fide, chiseled-in-stone item.  I've always embraced the cliche that opposites atrract, and there's no denying that there's a heavy flavor of that principle in play within the delightfully weird bond between us.  Strangely enough, we're almost totally the same, and yet somehow perfectly yin to the other's yang.  And the absolute truthful beauty of the situation is that the side of me that she has coaxed out has also created this paradoxical dynamic.

Capricorn chick and Virgo dude. Look it up. Totally us. :-)

The dominant part of me (which I hadn't really identified as such until recently) realizes that she basically embodies everything that I was prior to my recent soul awakening.  She is painfully shy.  She is self-conscience. She is secretly and internally confident in her power as a woman, yet only wishes to be nude in the darkness even before me, the man who, depsite her protests of me seeing her through rose-colored lenses, consistently reminds her of her astonishing physical beauty.

She's everything I used to be, and I am overwhelmed by a sense of complete empathy.  Not sympathy, but 100% I-know-exactly-how-you-feel empathetic love.  Like one who has myself been rescued from the ice cold waters of self doubt (and to a certain degree, self loathing), I want to wrap her in a warm thermal blanket and give her a cup of hot cocoa, holding her in a strong embrace until she reaches the place that I myself have risen to.

The irony is that it was she who lifted me out of my own personal spiritual frigid mire.  I simply want to return the favor so that I make her feel even two decimal points (that's a hundredth, for those of you who, like me, are total mathematical idiots who still use their fingers when adding) as awesome as the whole person that she has encouraged me to become. Up until her, I doubted myself in nearly every way as a man, lover, and relationship partner.  But *through* her I, quite suddenly, have embraced my testosterone in base, animal, and deliciously unruly ways.  I've learned to be the "enlightened male" who respects women as equals in all human aspects, but who can still rear his hand back and strike her ass in a sharply stinging (and authoritarian, [nigh domineering!]) spank, separating the idea of such from the deplorable notion of hitting a woman for aggression's sake, and an act of submissively dominant love, resulting in her emitting a wholly new and wickedly, delightfully pleasing squeal that I in my 34th year of life had yet to fully appreciate until now.


So last year I learned how to spank a woman and enjoy it. :-)  It is equally both fortunate and unfortunate that PoF girl and I relapsed into the same emotional doldrums which tore us apart the first damned time around.  While remaining on good terms, and I even having taken photos at a family function of hers earlier this year, our incompatibilities inevitably grew from easily-ignored differences into the 800-lb gorilla which ravaged any chances of us having a functional relationship.

I had such high hopes.  So it goes.

They never tell you that "Opposites attract!" is only one side of the coin.  One half of the equation.  It's the first of a two-act play.  What you're never told is that the truth, in its entirety, reads as such:  "Opposites attract... at first."  Beyond the at-first, you're pretty much fucked.  Opposites generate curiosity which leads to the amusement of novelty which, while at first quite potent, folds over upon itself to reveal the exact opposite of amusement... utter fucking irritation.   Opposites do indeed attract, however fleetingly. 

Birds of a feather do, however, not only flock together, but beget the kind of staying power which leads one to first lay eyes upon the other from across a parking lot and sparks the kind of reaction which exists in the preconscious realm of reflex.  The moment which, at a single glance, even your brutally honest gut reacts in concert and harmony with every other romantic, logical, and base fiber which constitutes who you are, and causes you to realize in that glorious instant the petty folly of every previous romantic notion you'd ever fooled yourself into thinking in your life up until then. That moment you see her, and your first reflexive thought before the structure and rubric of your personality can even respond, is your one true inner voice whispering through your ears,

"There she is... the One you're gonna marry."

Enter HailStorm, the woman of my dreams personified.  Only in my wildest musings, trying to concoct the most improbably impossibly perfect person, have I dared to imagine someone such as her.  And she not only exists, but feels the same about me. 

I have never in my 34 years been in such delicious trouble. :-)

Saturday, July 21, 2012

You kind of know the truth all along.  It's there, in the back of your mind, quietly shaking its finger at the shenanigans of your baser instincts.  The child who well knows that the stove is hot, but is driven by the insatiable curiosty to laminate the knowledge with actual experience, is still aware of the truth that they're going to get burned.  They touch the stove anyway, just to unify the idea with the reality.

So here I am, successfully single for the first time in my adult life.  I say that in the context of the societal norm of what it means to have success as a single young male:  I've been getting  laid a lot.  I could be in bed right now as I type this with a gorgeous curvy woman, but respect drove me to hold back.

See, she's the PoF girl who occupied the gap between her first and last appearances in the two subsequent posts of March and October of last year.  Both she and I have matured in our attitudes and approaches toward romance, and the "fatal incompatibilities" mentioned in October's post seem to, if not have vanished, then have at least faded from the marquee headline of the dynamic between us to easily ignored fine print.  She'd moved away last year, but now is living again in the area.  Once notoriously distant with her emotions and heart, she now has confessed to have let me in... even so far as to say that I've ruined her for other men, and that on dates and in bed with others, all she thinks about is me.

Her timing is atrocious.

I am smack in the middle of a sexual awakening, and have been casually *ahem*... dating a lovely young woman.  She's everything I've fantasized about, all rolled into one person.  She's very pretty, she's black, and she's a 110% illegal-in-48-states freakazoid mamma-jamma, and without going into details, has shown me a shocking number of things I've spent my entire adult life only being able to fantasize about.  She's fun, She's insatiable, she's crazy intelligent.  And I have yet to generate a single ounce of emotional connection to her.  It's just not there.  When she does kiss me, it's mechanical, almost sterile.  And any sort of cuddles have been distant and brief.

So as long as we're "fuck buddies", I guess that's ok.  I'm living the bachelor's dream... right?  Well, there's a truth I've known all along.  It's a pillar, a cornerstone of my personality that I formulated back when I was a teenager facing adulthood for the first time and with fresh ideals.  And what I decided was that I was a romantic.  Even in high school, I didn't have as many wild horny adolescent fantasies about my crushes as I did have daydreams about kissing, holding hands with her head on my shoulder, and the ultimate pinnacle: falling asleep with her in my arms.  The sexy stuff was there too, but it was usually led up to gradually, a buoy in the ocean of romantic reveries.

PoF girl is aware that I'm dating another. She thinks that because I am still seeing the other, I must have feelings for her, when the truth is our relationship is almost purely sexual.  PoF girl told me she doesn't want to be the other woman.  So tonight, having gone to her place to hang out and try out a new recipe, there was the familiar sexual tension.  But after we watched a movie, I went ahead and left with an adorably awkward goodbye, instead of trying to "put moves" on her.  I respected her wish, even though I'm pretty sure we both were wanting each other.  But if I'm going to do that with her, I want it to mean something, not just use her for a "booty call".  Lovemaking with her is far too wonderful to cheapen like that.  So while I could be, as Elton John so perfectly put it "rolling like thunder under the covers", I've decided to take the high road.

While my lover is satisfying to the body, and to my erotic core imaginings, my heart is left empty-handed.  There just aren't any of the warm fuzzies I get with PoF girl. I've known all along that living this fantasy sexual life would leave me feeling empty and unfulfilled, but I just had to find out for myself.  I just had to reach up and touch the hot stove, even though I knew I'd get burned.  The curiosity had me falling apart, and the chance to indulge was too tempting.

The first time PoF girl and I made love after she came back, and it was lovemaking... sweet and delicious, she did the most wonderful thing:  afterward, she turned toward and curled up against me, snuggling up against the ribs below the arm that I put over her.  And we cuddled, and dozed off and on, brought on by that deep level of comfort and ease that can no single person in bed alone can have, but which is only achieved with another warm body alongside yours with whom you share a deep affection. 

That meant more to me than anything, and when I think back over the last few months of my sudden stint as the big man on campus, my mind returns more often than not to that moment.

Sunday, May 06, 2012

Sunday in midwest Ohio

 You got the right idea, man.

This morning I slept in.  No alarm clock, no cell phone buzzing.  I pointed all my other window fans outward last night so that I could open the window at my head and let the cool night air flow in through my bedroom, washing over me in this hot apartment.  It's possibly the most beautiful day of this 2012 Spring thus far, and I have absolutely nothing pressing that I must accomplish today.

Despite my lack of desire to drink at a friend's birthday party last night, this morning I have decided that a tipple is just the right addition to this gorgeous morning.  So while all of the good people of Troy, Ohio were dressed in their best, worshipping in their various chapels, I commenced to basking in the glory of this awe-inspiring day, drink in hand, warm mid 70s breeze swirling through my place like a welcome ghost, and the record player alternating between Stravinsky, Janis Joplin, Debussy, and Pete Frampton... heart filled with a rare and pure, almost child-like joy and sense of gratitude for the privilege of being alive and able to experience such a day.

I can't help but feel that if there is a supreme being, he's looking down and giving me a wink and a thumbs up.

Wednesday, May 02, 2012

For those of you not familiar with Epic Meal Time, please spend a few moments reviewing at least several videos of absolute Qébequois culinary psychosis on their YouTube channel.

So given their need for income and hence merchandising, I noticed a recurring item in the videos to which I subscribe that does not appear in their online store.  It's the EMT whiskey drinking jar, one of which I simply MUST own.  I send them an email:

EpicMealTime whiskey jar...  Je l'ai besoin!  ¡Yo la necessito!  Where may one go about purchasing such an item?

(btw, I worked at a Tim Hortons in Ohio for two years, and I watch hockey.  I know what double-double means.   Does that qualify me as an honorary Canadian?)
 To which I received (quite promptly, I might add) the following reply:

Absolutely an honorary Canadian!!! The jars are not for sale at this time


 DUDE... I'm a bona-fide honorary CANADIAN!! This is EPIC WIN for Andy!

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Tonight I volunteered at a fundraising event that Dark Haired Girl invited me to.  I was bartender.

... alongside her New Guy.   There is no bad blood between us, no worries.  But as he began recounting the history of their relationship from teenage to reunion [shortly after her and my breakup] to some people, I had a hard time dealing with that.

But toward the end of the night, as we all had consumed a fair bit of alcohol, they began making out in front of me.  THAT fucking SUCKED.

Line in the Sand

The true deal-breaker in my next long term hardcore relationship:

Will you dance as enthusiastically with me as I'm dying to do with you at 3am on a Saturday night, home stereo turned up to a ridiculous volume, playing obscure yet infectious electronic dance music?

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Baked Goods and Funky Beats

I live above a little bakery/restaurant and have befriended the owner.  Her business hours are till 4pm, so I just assume that after that, the building is empty and I can play my music to whatever levels I wish.  Well, I went and raided a few record stores today and found some butt-kicking electronica/techno on vinyl.  I got home around 6pm, threw one on the turntable, and proceeded to rock out with my... sock out.

I noticed a text on my phone:

Her: That's a good sound from up there.
Me:  OMG you're still downstairs??
Her:  I'm down here doing some cakes LOL
Me: Well hell... I just picked up some Janis Joplin.  I'll put her on.
Her: Yea cool
Me: I hope you can hear that ok. 
Me: I'll spare you the techno.  But damn, the bass is incredible on vinyl.
Her:  Yep a little.  The other was good too.
Me: Well then, maybe I'll put on some Wild Cherry or K.C. and the Sunshine Band after this!

I'm playin' that funky music as I type this. She's cool as hell downstairs. :-)

Monday, April 23, 2012

Bitch, bitch, bitch... it's all I ever do anymore.

It's 12:04am as I sit down to write this.  My alarm is set for 6am.  I have to be at work by 7:30.  And here I am, wide awake and laying alone with eyes unable to close, staring into the darkness with a pounding case of the lonelies.

Jen and I did our usual Sunday afternoon hang-out, as has become a routine I very much look forward to.  I decided to cook tonight.  From-scratch mac n' cheese, baked tuscan herb chicken, and mixed veggies.  I swear, were it not for her, I'd have lost my marbles the second my last flame dumped me.  We had our usual discussions about relationships, and how different things look from the mens' and womens' perspectives.  I was telling her that the most discouraging aspect of being a lonely single guy is the uncertainty.  I know guys who, when they need companionship, hit the bar and just "get" a woman and have all sorts of unimaginable sexy adventures, as I would go to the store and "get" a gallon of milk and have... a glass.

I'm too bland to attract that sort of attention.  To thine own self be true... flashy alpha males get to have those kinds of experiences, and I'm just too much of a laid-back type B personality.  So when I get to feeling lonely and wanting like hell to kiss a girl, I have to land myself in steady long-term committed relationship before I get to touch another human being.   And that's where the uncertainty lies.  The five W's.  Who will she be?  When will I meet her?  What will the circumstances be?  Where am I going to meet her?  Why is she going for a guy like me? 

It may happen tomorrow.  It may happen five years from now.  And up until that point, I'm staring into the total darkness without a clue as to either when or where.  And once I meet someone who thinks I'm ok, then begins the courtship.  The long and dreadfully slow hike down the path of getting to know one another, seeing if we get along, and then establishing and nurturing a deep and soulful emotional connection, which takes a LONG FUCKING TIME.

Jen suggested that maybe I've already met that girl.  My ego would like to think that she's referring to herself. It wouldn't be the first time she's dropped hints like that.  I usually play dumb, but I catch them.  And it's taken quite a few years for the connection we share to solidify and deepen as it has.  It's just that we tried the relationship "thing", and it didn't work AT ALL.  Crash and burn and explode to smithereens.  The circumstances preventing a functioning romantic relationship between us are impassable.  But she's a part of me.  I feel so comfortable with and connected to her.  I miss her when I'm out of town.  And I abso-fucking-lutely DREAD the prospect of having to start at square one and blank slate with someone new, and taking the years upon years of effort to reach the level of attachment that I already have with Jen.

Jesus, I'm about to utter the phrase that has made me so bloody nauseous to my stomach the countless times unwitting crushes of mine have said it to me, but here goes:

I wish I could meet someone like her.

Friday, April 20, 2012

I love FAIL, FAIL loves me...

So I'm playing Draw Something this morning with Shaggy, when it's my turn and I get the word "dinosaur".  I often go to google images for ideas.  Hilarity ensues.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Classical Ghost Music

My Dad was a classical music fanatic.  He was the type of guy who could hear the first few opening notes of a piece and immediately call out not only the symphony number and movement, but also composer and even the era.  He was THAT GUY.  So while I suffered through a childhood of car rides filled with WDPR, Cincy's WGUC (which I called "double-you-GUCK"), and Cleveland's WCLV, I eventually gained a sensible, although not fanatic (and certainly not remotely knowledgeable) appreciation of symphonic music.

All, that, is, except for Anonin Dvořak's Symphony No. 9, From the New World.  Specifically the second of four movements titled "Largo".  Dad was elated when I said that not only did I like that piece, but that more than just a casual yen, I enjoyed it so much as to label it my favorite.  He always was proud of me for singling out and particularly enjoying that piece of music.  It was our little inside bond, Dvořak's Largo.

I am working at a retirement home in Elyria, Ohio, just west of Cleveland.  Today while we were working in resident's apartments, from an adjacent unit (as I was working in an empty Guest unit), I heard the dulcet strains of WCLV wafting  across the hallway.  It made me think of Dad, and then of how it's been possibly over a decade since I've heard my favorite piece... and how I would love to hear it again.  A few minutes later, the symphony which was playing ended, and after a station identification and then brief pause, I immediately recognized the very opening chord of the next piece.

Antonin Dvořak's Symphony From the New World, Largo movement.

On my work ladder I fell completely silent and still, taking in the music as though re-connecting with an old friend from the distant past.

And I felt the distinct presence of my Dad, to the point of nearly catching his scent, reassuring me with this beautiful gift of my favorite symphony that he was still very much alive and present... and listening.

 And I whispered to him "Hi, Dad.", and "Thanks."

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Monday my BFF, my brother from another mother drove away to Denver, Colorado to go to college.  I'm proud as hell of him, but dammit, having lost my girlfriend two weeks earlier and then now Shaggy, I'm feeling alone as hell.  It's been hard not to get at least a little emo about it all.  This has, however, thrown into sharp focus the state of my own life.  Always the one to appreciate having the proverbial mirror in front of my face, rather than freaking out over it (however negative or how much I may dislike what I see), this has spurred new inspiration to get my shizzle together.  Filled out my FAFSA, and have sent it off to two local colleges.  Time to get my ass an edjumucation in a blue-chip career field.  

Been hanging out a lot with Jen lately.  It's funny, two former lovers now bitching to each other about the woes of single life.  Few people could withstand the honesty and the irony.  Having the female companionship has been a godsend in buffering* the sting of loneliness.  Anybody who has read this blog for any amount of time WELL knows how much I suck balls at being single.  I'm still trying to figure out exactly how to sidestep the "beggars can't be choosers" approach to dating.  Believe me, with popular social scenes sporting damn near a 5:1 male to female ratio around here, choosing is not an option.  It's beer and watching the pretty "bad boys" get the girl.

*I accidentally typed 'buggering' at first. Made me chuckle.

Anyway, I'm having my ups and downs, but nothing I can't handle with a little help from my friends, and a pint or two or three or four of Murphy's.  Best Irish stout on the market, BTW.  I got a new toy in the mail: a cheap plastic Holga lens that fits on my Canon 50D.  It boogers up focusing and colors, and causes a darkening (vignetting) and blurring around the edges of the image.  Here are a few I took of Shaggy as he hung out in my apartment Sunday, one last time before high-tailing it out of Troy.  These are straight out of camera with no manipulation.

Pretty cool, huh?

In other news, I have vowed to learn how to do the Melbourne Shuffle, as has been revived in popularity by LMFAO and their song Party Rock Anthem.  It's basically pretty easy, and I dance my own weird "Andy Shuffle" (coincidentally quite similar to the established Melbourne) like a fiend to dance music anyway.  Why not learn some basic steps to not only get in shape a little, but also have something substantial to bring to the dance floor rather than just my usual brand of awkward slapstick idiocy. 

Imma tear dat shit up! :-)

Sunday, March 25, 2012

House Ghost Music

I have a house ghost.  Not really, of course, but it's an old historic building, and it has its own personality.  So I've named what goes bump in the night Geoff.  Short for Geoffrey, of course, but don't you dare call him "Joff-rey".  He hates that.

Joking.  Anyway, I'm sure if I have a house ghost, I've scared HIM off instead of the other way around.  It's 4:14am Saturday night \ Sunday morning, and I'm dancing my ever-living ass off to LMFAO played at a ridiculously loud volume.  If anything, I'm going bonkers, hands waving in air, feet nonstop shuffling, and Geoff in all his ghostly vapor is curled up in the fetal position in a dark corner of the attic trembling, whimpering "Make it stop!  Make it go away!!"

I invited him, of course.  How awesome would that be? :-)

Saturday, March 24, 2012

How many swigs to the bottom of the pint?


I went out to a bar with two female friends.  They both got hit on more times in one single night than I have in my entire fucking life (twice, and I vividly remember both magical evenings), and they have the NERVE to COMPLAIN about it.  I am 33.  They are 22 and 26.

This is the fundamental difference between men and women.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Another alcohol-fueled post...

January 5, eh?  Been a while, hasn't it?  Either quite a bit has happened since then, or else, very little different has happened.  Depends on your point of view. Your angle.  I'm kind of slanted in my PoV, considering I'm me.  The one experiencing all of this.  So of course it's a neverending swirling maelstrom of events, whether dramatic or mundane.

So here's my version for you, my dear readers, condensed and sweetened for easy purchase and longer shelf life:  Since my breakup with Jen, I've spent a hellish month and a half working in Florida at a job that, upon return home, has left me feeling like I've died a little inside.

And within that timeframe I've gained and subsequently (and pretty much par-for-the-course-ly) been dumped by a woman.  This time it was different.  I came home from Florida jaded.  I know what you all are thinking: "Wow, Andy went to Florida during January and February... he must have spent his time sipping mojitos on a pristine beach amongst micro bikini clad caramel-colored supermodels."

Such was not the case.  In fact, that could not have been any further from the actual reality of the godforsaken situation.  I'd spent a month and a half at a shit hole motel living alongside the mangey infested underbelly of humanity, the vast majority of the time having been spent dodging panhandlers and $20 crackwhores.  I seriously could have fucked any number of women for a mere Jackson apiece.  Just so they could afford to buy crack.


So what all this adds up to is this: given both past experience (and failed romantic endeavours), and also recent events which have left me jaded to the point of losing hope for humanity, any new girl in my life is up for some serious vetting before I go plunging head-first into a committed relationship, as was my usual modus operandi.

In other words, like a well adjusted and fully functioning adult, I took my time with this latest woman, rather than flipping out on her like some horny teenager.  I didn't push her into anything.  I let the profound connection and "click" that we shared bloom at its own natural pace.  And she dumped me via email days after I took my dear sweet time in asking her to be my girlfriend.

I can't win.


So here I am, your friend and humble narrator, back at SQUARE FUCKING ONE, 33 years and at least ONE THIRD into my alarmingly short time on this planet, convinced now of the thorough naiveté that the hope that I sooner or later fall in love isn't a TOTALLY UNREASONABLE REQUEST.

I'm never going to be a dad.  Never going to be a father.  Natural selection knows who is fit, and who isn't fit, to be a parent.  While every braindead beady-eyed abusive drooling stupid baby-shaking punching screaming child-beating silverback gorilla neanderthal DUMBFUCK seems to have no less than five or six kids, Mother Nature somehow has deemed me unworthy for such endeavours.  Idiocracy, anyone?

Charles Darwin can suck my cock.

Thursday, January 05, 2012

Sunday, January 01, 2012

Things have been coming to a head for a while now, and frankly, the old Andy has been pissing me off.  I'm the type of person who can know one thing but not totally feel it, so often it takes reaching a boiling point for me to illicit change in myself.  That point has been reached, and especially after this recent breakup, shit needs to change.  No more whiny bitchy little Andy who can't stand it, and freaks the hell out when he doesn't have a girl to kiss.  It's time to ditch that old attitude, and regain the comfort in my own skin that I seem to have have lost.  So, as 2012 is three hours old, I declare the following resolution for the new year:

Grow the fuck up.

Friday, December 30, 2011

I'm trying, really.

See, I can walk up to anybody and introduce myself.  No problem.  I did just that earlier tonight.  After my friends had left the bar, I found the one unoccupied seat and plopped down next to a reasonably attractive young woman.  She looked bored off her ass, so I said to her, "You look about as bored as I am."  She said "Yeah, I kind of am."  So I said "I hear ya.  But I figured I'd rather stroll over and be bored here than bored at home."  Before my wit could generate a snappy follow-up, she gave me an awkward chuckle and turned her back to me and her attention to the admittedly significantly better-looking "bro" types loudly inhabiting the end of the bar, high-fiving each other with their muscles and tight t-shirts.

My problem isn't initiating conversation.  I can do that all day long.  Where I choke is when it comes to plucking  profound and intellectually stimulating conversation out of thin air to some total stranger that I don't even begin to know, within that five second window between "Ok, I'm listening." and "Ok, you're creepy."

You Can't Always Get What You Want

... but if you try sometimes, well you just might find you get what you need.

Ok, so who remembers the show Northern Exposure?  Remember Dr. Fleishman's Eskimo receptionist, Marilyn Whirlwind?

Adorable, isn't she? Anyhoo, as a budding young preteen/teen, her character always struck me with her wise and quiet simplicity, and the way that when she *did* speak, she stated exactly what she needed to, no more and no less.  One episode struck little developing Andy quite profoundly, as she had gone missing, and everybody was panicking trying to find her.  Eventually she was discovered... sitting on a bench at the zoo, enjoying a cone of vanilla soft serve, and contentedly watching the world go by.  Immediately, I realized this was the way to be, this centered state of solitary bliss, savoring two of the world's simpler yet profound pleasures with a perceptual and spiritual depth that most others would simply not be sensitive enough to grasp.

Little Andy finally had a role model, and to this very day, a large portion of my adult personality is still based on her character's zen-like state of sage chill-outedness.

I've done a pretty good job of emulating Marilyn. Some of my most treasured life moments have been, and even still are spent, even if in a sea of strangers, otherwise completely alone. I used to love going to the movies and restaurants, and any number of other activities that most would consider unimaginable without a partner.  They'd look at me like I grew another head when I'd tell of the things I'd done all by me onesy, and frankly, I'd look back at them in complete puzzlement as to why they were acting like I'd skinned a live kitten.  I blissfully glide across the ice at Hobart Arena, surrounded by hundreds of people, as though I were the only one there.

Last night Jen and I officially called it "better off as just friends".  Our relationship has never been better, and I'm closer to her than I've ever been.  But I'm also more lonely than I've had to endure in a good while.  And tonight, as Shaggy has found an amazing woman to spend time with, and thus has been less accessible to me, I found myself in a state where there were none to keep company with.  And I kinda freaked out a little bit.  I'd lost my inner Marilyn who would have reveled in "alone time".

So I meandered down to the L&V, my perennially favorite watering hole, expecting nobody to be there, but instead ended up striking up a conversation with someone visiting family for the holidays.

Turns out he has produced a calendar featuring photographs he has taken of traditional, romantic, and otherwise postcard moments... only interrupted by someone's dog squatting to poop in the foreground.

It was definitely an unusual conversation, and while I'd hoped to have my hollywood moment locking eyes with an unfamiliar yet fetching young lass from across the room, alas such was not meant to be.  Instead, I spent the night happily chatting away with a kindred unusual artistic soul.

  You meet the damnedest people in this town.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Cameron's House, part 2

The infamous glass garage.

Cameron's House, part 1

Outside Cameron's house from Ferris Bueller.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

I'll vouch. It's pretty tall.

Me, outside of the Sears Tower (now the Willis Tower).

Sunday, December 18, 2011


Well... true to history, my relationship with my girlfriend is falling spectacularly to pieces.  Jen and I make the best of friends, but the last four months have proven us the worst of lovers.  We're on a "time out", and she's going to let me know if she still wants to be in a romance relationship after the holidays.  Call me crazy, but I sense a big fat 'no' on the horizon.

We hung out the other night, and it was just like old times: two friends bullshitting, having many good laughs, and cracking dirty jokes like when we were in the bakery.  She was as beautiful as ever, and I was dying to simply hold her hand, but I'm pretty sure that ship has sailed.

So here I sit in loverly limbo.  Cupid's purgatory; neither here nor there.  "In a Relationship", but lonely as all get out, and with no recourse to alleviate the loneliness but to brew a pot of coffee, surf the web for things that make me laugh, and wait patiently...


In the mean time, today the late afternoon sunlight was streaming in through my front studio room's windows, and cast a nice silhouette of my flash, stand, and umbrella onto the room divider:

There's been a slight uptick in photo gigs lately, and it's feeling pretty good to knock the rust off the ol' trigger finger. Did a great couple's shoot yesterday.


So now it's Sunday, 6pm, and I haven't done a damn thing productive today.  Now THAT'S my kinda day. :-)

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Not a Real Tree..

... but an amazing soy substitute!

I love this damned "Motivator" app!

No caption needed. :-)

Monday, December 12, 2011

Lasagna WIN

Tell me that doesn't look perfect. A tiny bit runny in the middle, but freakin delicious!


Cheese filling and homemade meat sauce!

It's unclogged!


So yeah, a second heapin' helpin' of the devil juice finally got my drain drainin' again.  A pleasant side effect is that my kitchen sink now empties like a champ. Unfortunately, the little bit of acid that splashed in my tub and removed (quite effectively, I might add) a patch of soap scum revealed just how built-up it is in my tub.  Egad.

Off to the store for some scrubbing bubbles and a stiff bristled brush.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Just a spoonful of acid makes the hair clog go down...

My tub's drain has come to a damn near stand-still, so I buy this psychotically strong drain un-clogger.  It's so corrosive that the bottle is sealed in a plastic bag.  I also buy latex gloves up to my elbows.  So I get home and pour half the bottle down the drain, and....




This stuff is PUTRID.  It's basically just sulfuric acid, heavy on the sulfur, and even heavier on the ASS-id.  Immediately my entire apartment is filled with this near asphyxiatingly rancid smell of rotten eggs and DEATH, so while it's 20 degrees outside, I scramble, gasping, putting a fan exhausting air out my kitchen window and another in the front window pulling fresh outside air in.

I wait the requisite 15 minutes, gulp in a lungful of ice cold fresh air, and run to the bathroom and turn on the cold water.

It doesn't drain.

Screw this, I'm off to the bar.

Friday, December 09, 2011

Who was giving a hoot in hell?

Seriously, what kid at the doctor's office is going to care?

Screen Door on a Submarine

Because I shed like a golden retriever when I rinse my hair out, I bought one of those bathtub drain hair trap thingies. All well and good, except for the fact they made it out of material that fucking FLOATS in WATER.

Of Course

Front Brakes: "So... I see it's Christmas time.  Still have a lot of shopping to do?"
Me: "Yeah, still have a lot of things to buy for people."
Front Brakes: "Hehehehe, that's what you think.... GRRRRIIIINNNNDD!!"

Thursday, December 08, 2011

Out of nowhere....

... comes Evan trotting down the steps.

Evan: "Kate's lying!"
Kate: (from upstairs) "Evan's lying!!"
Me: "About what?"
Evan: "Nothing."

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

That annoying Heineken guy is neither the Old Spice man nor The Most Interesting Man in the World.

Nice try. 'E' for effort.

Thank you T.G.I. Friday's

"Gimme more Friday's"? Gimme more fries!

2 a.m. a steel plant in Cleveland, and I'm fuggin' tired.

Monday, December 05, 2011

My girlfriend is going through a profound transition in her life, and she is making some incredibly hard decisions and difficult actions.  This is a personal journey, and as much as I want to talk about it and walk beside her, this is something she must do on her own, and I need to be a silent support.

I just want her to know that I am really proud of her.
My foot must be delicious, because I'm constantly jamming the fucker in my mouth.

To nut, or not to nut?

The soap bars here at the hotel have a fine print disclaimer: "This product contains no nuts or nut". I'm wondering what the difference is. Like, is there a possible instance where one could say "Sure, it has nuts, but no nut."?

Saturday, December 03, 2011

Saturday Night Troy, Ohio. Someone's tidy whiteys just laying randomly on the sidewalk. A good time is being had somewhere.

Decided to go ice skating for the first time since my spill last January. Doubt I'll make the whole two hours... legs starting to burn. As expected, I'm in the vast minority of people here old enough to legally buy cigarettes.

Working on a knuckle boom lift.

Just to give you an idea of what I've been doing lately.  Namely, dangling 40 feet off the ground in a knuckle boom in a steel pickling plant in Cleveland.

Monday, November 28, 2011

No, I really mean it.  I'm done with Facebook.  I'll keep the account up so I can visit and comment on Jen's page, but I'm done with either creating new posts on my own wall or reading the news feed.  It's actually something that needed to happen.  Too much of my social life had become wrapped up in a website, rather than actual socializing.  The act of visiting a friend had deteriorated to a mere click of the "Like" button on something they'd written, just to acknowledge to them that I'm still aware they exist.  That's no way to conduct a friendship.

 Apparently, though, there is a handful of people who enjoy my WTF photos, absurd musings, and children-say-the-darndest-things moments.  So fear not, dear readers, they shall continue.  I will not go gently into that good night!  It's time to screw Facebook and resurrect the blog.  For too long it has lain dormant, and it's no coincidence that its hibernation began the second I got sucked into the FB black hole.

So here's a little exchange between Evan and I the other night...

Evan: Do you have any brothers?
Me: Yeah, I have one.
Evan: Is it Todd?
Me: No, Todd is just my best friend.
Evan: Why?
Me: I ask myself that same question every day.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Well, hello there!  Bet you thought I'd forgotten about you, didn't you?  Well... busted. I did forget for a while, thanks to Facebook for providing me with all my post-and-comment jollies.  But I'm back, and hopefully for good, because you just can't sit down and pour your heart out on FB like you can here, and I've been building up some serious steam since March.

The aforementioned PoF girl did in fact materialize into a relationship.  This is no mystery to whomever may be reading this, because you're probably a FB friend anyway, but suffice to say it didn't last too long.  There were certain fatal incompatibilities in our romance relationship styles that prevented a functioning boyfriend/girlfriend-ship.  -ness. -hood.  Whatever, you know what I'm trying to say.


Last August I began dating Jen.  No need to conceal the name this time.  One quarter of the female population of midwestern Ohio is named Jen... followed by Sara(h), Crystal, and Angel.  ANYHOO, I was a card-carrying member of her "friend zone", having met and become friends at the Walmart bakery.  For about a year and a half, I nurtured her and let her cry on my shoulder when toolbag after toolbag treated her like dirt.  Well, we began a fling after I'd broken up with the above mentioned PoF girl, and of all people, Dark Haired Girl sternly scolded me not to use her for just a fling like all the other guys I'd been consoling her from.  So I took her advice and asked Jen to be my girlfriend.

Jen is a desirable girl.  She's a sexy, bawdy, ballsy, take-charge-yet-vulnerable kinda girl.  And she's beautiful.  Oh my god, is she so freaking pretty!  I'll admit it.  I used to get on her FB page and stare at her photos before we dated.  This also creates the situation that many men are also after her, and let's just say her past wasn't filled with well-intended Romeos like myself.

Long story short: she still has guys texting her constantly for sex.  This doesn't bother me, I'm actually kind of smug in the fact that my woman is desired by so many men.  But one in particular gets under my skin, so I decided to send him a message on FB.  He seemed like an ok guy.  Jen said he was really intelligent, and maybe that's why I perceive him as a threat.  He's sneaky.  He can use words to infect your brain like a hacker.  But given that he's not just another Tipp-Troy-Piqua-Sidney corridor redneck, I thought maybe I could reach out to him with this message:

This is Jen's boyfriend. I'm not going to go all chest-beating alpha male on you or get bent out of shape... not my style. I want to handle this like an adult and to ask you, man to man, to not proposition my girlfriend for sex. It's cool if you want to talk to her, I keep in touch with my exes, but please do Jen the respect of keeping it on a friendly level. Thanks!
His reply: "Shut the fuck up."  Then the coward blocked any responses.  Then he sent her a text message bitching her out. Now I know, I know... I'm giving in to the dark side.  A bigger man would just brush it off because really, why waste so much energy fretting over someone who means nothing to me, and has no bearing or effect on the outcome of my life?  It's bringing worthless 90210 teenybopper drama onto myself.  Still, I just can't shake this agitation.  So I present to you my purgation.  My catharsis:
Open Letter to the Person Harassing my Girlfriend
Why is it always the shit-smelling assholes like you that walk around calling all the good people of the world 'asshole' without provocation? My request that you stop propositioning my girlfriend for sex was mature, even-tempered, diplomatic, and non confrontational. But you had to pop off your childish retort like a 9 year old playground bully. It's time for you to run along now little boy, go grab your mommy's Victoria's Secret catalogue, and fuck yourself because my girlfriend is never going to again, no matter how much it's eating you alive that you can't have her. She's with me now, and she is a vibrant, sexy, wonderful, and incredibly intelligent woman who deserves for a man like me to treat her like a queen and give her the world, not to be gawked at like an inflatable fuck doll by some immature sniveling little needle-dick like you.
She chose me over you because I am man enough to step up to the plate and offer her what you are too chickenshit to: Heart.  Soul.  Security.  Dignity.  Respect.  Affection.  See, you're too stupid an imbecile to realize that women want more than cock, and so you just can't see what a girl would want in a guy like me.  And that makes me vastly superior a human being you your slimy worthless ass.
I give you permission to call me an asshole now, because I'm fucking being one to you, and justifiably so. This time, I'm not asking... I'm TELLING YOU to leave my woman alone. Go slither to a bar and find a skank to use for some quick ass like all of your fellow garden-variety douchebags, you pathetic loser.

By the way, your cutsie little "Fight! Win! Prevail!" tagline doesn't make you sound tough. It makes you sound like a cheerleader. Go put on a skirt and get out of the way of the real men like me, you whiny little bitch.

Thank you for your time.