Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Things I do, instead of doing things.

I'm sure a few of you have been starting to wonder as of late, where my blogs ran off too. I know it sounds like a cop out saying I've been swamped, so I wont say it. Not because of the cop out factor as much as the lack of inherent truth. I once had a teacher (we're talking 3rd grade here) who told me I spent more time making excuses then doing the actual work, and if I worked more and complained less I'd get a lot more accomplished... And by god, the flaming bitch was right. Thanks bitch!

Below I have taken the liberty of listing the things I HAVE been doing lately.

1. Watching snails.
Now, before you judge me, snails are kind and misunderstood creatures of the sea. Their lives are simple. Move slow. Pick up rock. Travel slowly with rock to opposite side of fish tank. Deposit rock in chosen corner. Deliberate yet casual 180 degree turn. Travel across tank for second rock. And so on. It's all about moving things to places, and avoiding salt and French people at all costs. My kind of animal.

2. Watching the movie "House of Wax"
Kind of like watching snails. It's been playing nightly on FX for the last few days, and I love it. It might be one of the worst movies ever made, but the escape from reality is a key factor here. In the real world, Paris Hilton exists. In the movie, Paris Hilton gets impaled through the face with a giant metal pole within the first 30 minutes of screen time. Her total lines in the film? About a dozen (which in my opinion was pushing it). Her death scene? Worth its weight in cinematic gold. I could watch that pole slide through her cranium like a tiny blond watermelon on repeat all evening, and that thought occurred to me simultaneously with the thought that I wished I had TIVO. There was no one in my house while I was watching House of Wax, but I kept uttering "That's hot" to myself and you know what? It never stopped being funny.

3. Scratching my cats with forks.
Turns out, the best cat scratcher is a fork. I discovered this when I finished eating my rice pudding (while watching House of Wax and talking to myself) and my cat Sushi jumped up into my lap. I was about to dump her back onto the floor like the warm hearted care giver that I am, when I accidentally poked her with my fork. She looked at me. "Meow?" (she seemed to say). Poke. Poke. Scratch. Purring! I feel like I discover new uses for kitchenware on a daily basis. I'm ok about sharing this with the general public, because no one ever comes over to my house for dinner... and if anyone was considering it, I hope I put the kibosh on that idea for good. I don't cook. I buy pre-made food, and groom small animals with my utensils.

4. Order things online and then cancel the order before checking out.
I'm poor, but also a compulsive internet shopper. My new system for satisfying my need to shop online and not spend a dime is working out splendidly. I simply go onto the desired website, click "add to cart" to everything and anything that I want, fill in all my information, and then click out of the window before I get to the part that says "complete transaction". Then I pretend I ordered everything, and my short attention span takes care of the rest.

5. Pull random objects out of my cat
Before you jump to conclusions on this one, listen carefully. Sushi (the cat I fork) likes eating things she finds around my apartment. Strings, twisty ties, hair bands, necklaces, and the like. Often times, she will gag on one of these things, and I get the fun filled and exciting job of pulling whatever she has chosen to ingest out of her throat as she runs backwards in a ball of gagging fury. My personal favorite was a 9 inch shoelace that I pulled out of her stomach in one single piece. I call it "fishing for treasure". She calls it "BLERCHHHHHHHHHH!"

6. Sticking labels on things.
And I don't even own and label maker. I'm talking straight up ghetto labeling from the printer, hand cut and hand laminated using multiple pieces of scotch tape. I enjoy labeling all of my things at work, because A) I'm paranoid everyone steals my things when in reality I just lose everything and B) I want to give the illusion of being organized without ever actually having to organize anything. That box has my name on it. The contents of the box is unimportant and probably covered in iodine and hand soap from my "iodine and hand soap accident of 07", but the label makes it look official, and if you try and take it I'm going to come after you with a staple gun. Additional warming: I JUST learned how to use a staple gum and have already stapled my thumb nail to the wall (twice yesterday actually), so don't mess with me.

7. Wandering around aimlessly on Facebook.
For some unknown reason, Facebook is the internet equivalent of a vast and unrelenting desert. I browse around, reading peoples headlines and looking at pictures, but I'm not really paying attention. I don't really care about the save the earth party coming up or the new skydiving alcoholics group being put together... in fact, I could give a flying alcoholic shit. I don't want to know if Jake and Mary are still dating, or if Matt and his brother are in a fight, or if Suzy is pregnant and its the love child of Myspaces founder Tom. It doesn't really matter, we all have our "feeds" going on and on in an endless Wall Street like way (minus the urgency, of course), but for some reason I just keep going back. I keep reading about everyones boring, scatterbrained lives. In a way, I durrive more pleasure from watching the snails move rocks around the tank, but in a way that's ludacris because it's almost EXACTLY the same thing... except the snails don't have photo albums.

8. Spilling things.
2 days ago it was coconut scented shampoo. Yesterday it was paint. 3 seconds ago, it was a glass of lemonade. My legs are cold, and lemony.

Can you smell the consumerism?

Per my friends request, we spent a good part of the lazy day off afternoon at a perfume store, smelling smells. This was the way the idea was proposed to me. "Wanna go to a perfume store and smell some smells?" "Sure."

And with that it was decided. In no time flat we were sitting cross legged on the floor of a department store, with our noses poised above fancy looking bottles shaped like the busts of women, diamonds, tear drops, and everything smelled like flowery grandmothers. Between sneezes, I lifted a bottle of Giorgio Armani Code to my nose and fumbled around for the squirty part. The key word here is fumbled, because in my allergy induced haze I had mistakenly pointed the nozzle directly at my face and gave it a good hard press. In half a second, I had Code covered eyeballs and was rubbing my way into sexy smelling blindness. "Hey! I really like this one! Come smell my eyes!"

In a few minutes I had most of my vision, although a bit hazy, returning to normal. While browsing a side shelf, a square yellow bottle caught my eye. Most likely because it was yellow and larger then the other bottles, hence making it easier for me to see through my Armani tears. I grabbed the bottle and read the label.


No fucking way. I'm sorry. Did I seriously just read that. The most useless, annoying, self indulgent vehicle to ever grace the driveways of new money hicks and ultra right wing republican loony tunes now has a fricking COLOGNE? I had so many questions. Does it smell like regret? Is it made from the tears of baby seals? Does it deplete the O-zone layer and destroy the environment with every squirt? Is the bottle big enough to fit my regret and desperation? Will putting it on help the world understand what a huge douchebag I am? Will you be able to smell how big of a douchebag I am from miles away? Do I have to refill the bottle every 3 minutes? Can I customize the bottle with creepy abbreviations like "HMRLVR" and "FUIRAQ"? GOD I hope so.

Most importantly, I immediately wanted to know how the Hummer Cologne smelled. I picked it up, but paused before bringing the bottle to my nose. Often times, I allow my curiosity to get the best of me. Maybe spraying myself in the face with code was a sign from on high. Do I really want to know exactly what greedy corporate America smells like... and doesn't corporate America stink enough on its own without needing to bottle the stench and market it to the public? Do I want to sniff the round table of advertising decision makers who agreed and shook hands on the notion that the most evil vehicle ever invented needed to also be a fragrance? Do I want the essence of Hummer lingering inside my nostrils and undoubtedly making me dumber just for having partaken in its aroma? Does it have that 'new car' smell?

So I put the bottle down without ever inhaling the contents, and felt instantly glad that I left that entire mess a mystery. Ideally, every bottle of Hummer Cologne ever bottled, packaged, and shipped will go unsold until the day its discontinued. Ideally it will be removed from shelves forever, allowing all the stores that ordered the stuff to repent and scrub the stink of embarrassment off of their reputations. Sadly, if I know anything about people and the world I've lived 22 and 1/2 years in, this will not be the case. Some stupid freedom fry loving idiot will buy cases of the stuff religiously, dousing their cheap collar popped Abercrombie polo shirts in it until it nauseatingly wafts from their every pore.

So thank you, advertising geniuses and corporate jerk offs behind the ever growing Hummer phenomenon. Thank you for allowing the few sane individuals left on this earth the gift of not only being able to see morons and half wits coming from a fricking mile away, but now we can also smell them coming too.

Dear Fucker who stole my wallet

Dear fucker who stole my wallet,
Congratulations. You are now the proud owner of all of my shit. Credit cards, debit cards, cash, pictures, drivers license, IDs, my goddamn social security card, insurance cards, and even my blockbuster card. While I was having a pleasant 55 degree January day (first since 1906, apparently) on the beach in Chicago, you were breaking into Js car and snatching my handmade, pressed leather, limited addition wallet and for some reason, Js phone. Who steals a cell phone... I mean seriously.

I hope you enjoyed your shopping spree at every gas station within walking distance of the beach where I was having a chicken salad sandwich. Good thing I withdrew 80 bucks from an ATM before we went to the beach, in case you needed quicker access to my cash. Sorry the 80 bucks wasn't enough, and you had to make all those time consuming Visa purchases for 53 bucks at 7-eleven. This begs the question, how does anyone spend 53 bucks at a 7-eleven? Did you buy the whole store out of stock? Did you have a craving for 40 air sealed day old bologna sandwiches? Did you buy 50 big gulps? I hope you had petty thief backup, because thats a lot of brain freeze... assuming you have the necessary equipment.

Thanks to you, I spent all day driving (without my license) to the DMV (to get a new license) and to the bank (to figure out exactly how much of my money you spent before I canceled my cards) and hoping I didn't run out of gas (because I officially have no money). In the rain. Because when it rains, it pours.

I hope you used some of my money to buy an umbrella. Because aside from how hard its been raining, I had some pretty vivid dreams about being tall enough to pee on your head, and I believe in the power of wishes. I woke and and wished pretty hard for that one to come true.

Honestly, enjoy it. I hope the fun you had was matched equally by the amount of frustration and helplessness I felt all day yesterday and today. I hope before you ditched my wallet in some gutter or dumpster, you took a good long look at the pressed leather artwork on the back and front. It's a Valcom limited addition. Can you say "good taste"? No of course you can't. Did you happen to come across some photos when you were sifting around in my wallet? Those were baby pictures of my horse, pictures I don't have copies of. More valuable then the cash, cards, wallet, IDs, and even the blockbuster card.

I'm not an "ill wisher" by nature, but I would like it very much if you would fall on a sharpened stick. I hope you get a splinter the size of a banana. I hope you buy a bad hot dog with my money and get food poisoning and barf for a week, and rock and rock in a public bathroom sobbing "I shouldn't have stolen that nice girls wallet, she had such impeccably good taste in pressed leather goods and I know nothing of her pain!"

I believe whole-heartedly in karma. So don't look up, because that's not rain you're feeling streaming down your forehead. Thats pee, coming from the giant version of myself that I concocted to exact my satisfying yet imaginary revenge.

I get the wallet theft thing. But a phone? Thats just weird. Maybe you needed to call 7-eleven to see how late they were open. Because YOU'RE A FUCKING INVALID.

Grown ups

When you realize pivotal things about life, it doesn't usually happen all of a sudden. The ironic thing is, these realizations happen in bits and pieces over the course of years, but when you finally open your eyes it feels like the very first time you've ever seen anything in its true form. I'm talking about adulthood. When you were a kid, grown ups knew everything. You didn't even question it. They were the cure for your bumps and bruises, the answerer of all of your questions, the guides and all knowing beings in our lives. When you get a little older you start to see minor flaws. You see that grown ups fight, they sometimes don't know why things happen the way they did, they make rules and laws but also break them. Then one day you open your eyes and you are one of them. An "adult". It might happen when you're in your 20's or your 30's, maybe even later for some, but it happens. And then comes the scary part. You are finally a grown up. And you are as clueless and helpless as you were when you were a kid.

Recently, I lost my job at a place I've been going to every day for 10 years. I lost faith and love in the people who I trusted there and considered my friends. I found closed doors were I used to find welcoming arms. I was thrust out into the snow. That was a week from today, and today I found dissolution where I thought I saw certainty. Without saying too much, Love is the kind of thing that kids dream about. It turns out, its the kind of thing adults dream about too. Dreams and reality are different, which is really what growing up is all about. Learning that the perfect life is a fairy tale, and there is no such thing as getting everything you want. Being an adult is about looking into the face of the truth when its dim and frozen, and being ok with settling for less.

My life as an adult can be summed up. I pay bills. Sometimes on time, sometimes late. I trip and fall, drop things, forget where I'm going and when I have to be there. I'm broke. I know what it feels like to be unemployed. I know what it feels like to be underemployed. I know what it feels like to be unappreciated. I know what it feels like to be uncertain. I know what it feels like to hate myself, and what it feels like to hate other people. I know what it feels like to be scared of trying, petrified of failing, paranoid and worried about looking foolish. I know how unfair it seems when you cant take something back, cant change things, cant make time go backwards and fix mistakes. I know what a broken heart feels like.

It hurts worse then realizing that growing up means nothing other then getting older. Numbers. Experiences. Memories. I know what I did today. What I did last week. Last year. I can smell it on my hands, see it on my face, read it in my words. I'm no more a grown up now then I was when I was 8. The only difference is when I was 8 I could look up into the faces of my parents and my teachers and family and think that everything was going to be ok because they knew everything and one day I would too. Again, the irony lies in the fact that they were looking down at me and thinking about their troubles relationships and overdue bills and miles and miles or broken hearts and lost loves and issues about commitment and self worth and distrust... in reality I was the one who was better off. And at 8 years old, I wasn't even allowed to cross the street by myself.

Evangelical Christians: and other reasons why the world is coming to an end

There are few things that scare me more then organized religion, and fewer things still that manage to frighten the crap out of the very core of be being than the cult phenomenon that is Evangelical Christianity. So being the spiteful Jew that I am, I chose Easter to theorize the obvious connections between this sect of insanity and the end of the world. I mean, what else am I going to do today? All the stores are closed.

A stadium full of Republicans wailing and carrying on about "getting saved by Jesus" is item number two on my top 100 things that are wrong with the world today. In case you're wondering, item number one is a stadium full of Republicans wailing and carrying on about "getting saved by Jesus" without a food court... but as we all know, Evangelical churches recognize the need for large amounts of right wing nut job southerners to indulge in greasy fast food Americana during their religious atonement. Yummy.

Lets say that one day an alien from outer space decides to fly his little Martian ship down to earth to study the human race, and makes the navigational mistake of landing smack in the middle of one of these ceremonial Christian cluster fucks. Do you think Mr Martian is going to stick around while we smack each other in the forehead and proclaim "PRAISE JESUS, YOU'RE SAVED!" to everyone within a hallelujahs swinging distance? No way! He'd zoom out of here so fast he wouldn't even bother stopping at the nearest Texaco for extra rocket fuel and a Slim Jim.

Apparently, George Bush once said "I trust that God speaks through me" to a gathering in Lancaster PA. I hate to be the one who is continuously pointing out the obvious, but if God got high enough on crack one day to find it an amusing enough joke to speak through the monkey lips of George Bush himself, he would (one would assume) not continuously mispronounce words like "Nuclear". Fool me once, shame on....errrr...me.... umm... fool me twice... ehhhh....? Whatever, pass me a banana.

It comforts me to know that the leader of our nation, a widely declared supporter of the Evangelical church, is not only the self proclaimed speaker of the direct words of God, but also chucking us into a war under a belief system where the apocalypse is imminent. Therefore, true to my love of list formation, we will call good old president Bush the number 1 reason why the world is in fact, coming to an end.

Reason number 2: Tom DeLay
Crazy by its dictionary definition, Delay once told the Washington Post that "God is using him to promote a biblical worldview on American politics" and as far as I'm concerned, I've heard just about enough from nut jobs number one and two about God using them as his own personal finger puppets. Tommy boy would also like to "reestablish what he sees as the rightful role of religion in public places...". A total comfort coming from a guy who, previous to being "saved", was an exterminator. I'm sure (in the quiet of his bed late at night) he still refers to himself lovingly as "THE EXTERMINATOR" but this time without any connection to bugs and more so to things like gay people, minorities, and freedom.

Reason number 3: Reverend Jerry Falwell
Most of you recognize this bitter fart as Tinkie Winkie the Teletubbies mortal enemy; because of poor Tinkies purpleness and his compulsive need to carry gorgeous handbags and coo in high pitched fabulousness. Sure, its a free country and any religious figure can openly bash a gay toddler icon, but it might be taking it a bit too far to also believe in dispensationalism (by definition, the belief that after the Antichrist performs a mass slaughter on the Jewish people, the survivors must convert to Christianity). Being a Jew myself AND a supporter of big gay purple Telletubies worldwide, you might understand my strong distaste for the Rev. Because crazy knows no particular boundaries, Falwell has also been quoted as saying that global warming is "Satan's attempt to redirect the churches primary focus from Evangelism to Environmentalism". Damn that Satan, he wants us to focus on restoring our environment? He truly is evil, and his priorities suck.

Reason number 4; Reverend Timothy LaHaye
Aptly referred to as "Reverend Doomsday" by Rolling Stone magazine (I knew there was a reason I keep renewing my subscription, pure genius), Tim is considered by many to be one of the most important and influential leaders in the Christian right, and in his spare time an avid author of novels about the apocalypse, which happens to be his very favorite topic. He believes that Iraq, lead by the Antichrist of course, will engage Israel in a world shattering battle to the end of the world. Epic, huh? LaHaye, along with President Bush and the "Committee to Restore American Values" have honed very specific ideas about gay marriage, stem cell research, abortion, education, and religious freedom; all of which I'm sure by now you could throw out some pretty accurate educated guesses.

I don't know about all of you, but this Easter holiday weekend, I'm feeling pretty safe. After all, everyone is sitting home peacefully eating Easter dinner and looking for little colored eggs in grandmas rosebushes (careful kids, theres thorns!). I mean, even the super insane big wigs are probably taking a break from inventing their personal bible thumping versions of the way we will all soon be burning in eternal hellfire... I mean, everyone needs a vacation from their jobs now and again- even if your job is to be the absolute scariest old white dude since Hitler. So relax everyone, put your feet up and slip those shoes right off. Theres plenty of time to eat some chick Peeps (or at least stick one or two in the microwave for fun) before we are all swallowed up into damnation.

Simpler times

Lately, it feels like a sumo wrestler has been river dancing to Ska music on my spine. Work kicks my ass so hard I can literally feel the pain in the tips of my ears, and the peeling sunburn just adds insult to injury. While continuously adjusting my posture in the car today, trying to find a more comfortable position for my back (to no avail) I began to yearn for a simpler time. What seems like a million years ago, a barely reachable memory in the back of my head, the simple pleasures of childhood.

There was a time before things got complicated, this I know. A time before sex and controlled substances, a time before car payments and cable bills, when cookies were cookies and not calories, when sneakers came in Velcro and underwear came in days of the week. It was in this time my earliest memories were formulated, and now driving on the Illinois tollway they slosh around in my head like forgotten floaty toys in the deep end of the pool.

My fondest memory, maybe ever, was from about the age of 5. My family lived in a small apartment in Brooklyn on the west side of Prospect Park. It was a 2 bedroom on the 4th floor, and the view from every window overlooked a courtyard into another building the mirror image of our own. If you squinted your eyes and leaned out you could see into the kitchens of our neighbors, people who we never knew except for the green retro tile design on the floors. When my sister and I trick-or-treated for Halloween we never even left the building, just took the elevator up and down knocking on doors and scoffing at the old lady on the 12th floor that always handed out pennies instead of candy every year. I said hello to the doormen, carried a stuffed elephant named Dumbo who had a feather duct taped to his trunk and would only brush my hair when forced to do so. I was 5 years old, little and clueless about anything of importance in the world I lived in. I only needed to know about ice cream flavors and play dates, these were the criteria for a full and accomplished day.

My father was never really around, so my mom, sister and I were a constant trio. From this fact comes the memory I was talking about earlier. My mom, being the freedom loving 60s child that she was, always gathered us in the large living room that was the center of our apartment. She would roll out the ancient record player she had and slide out a Beatles album, setting it carefully down underneath the needle. We all pushed the sofa and coffee table against the wall, leaving a large open space on the red carpet in the middle of the room. The record began to crackle and when "Cant buy me love" or "I wanna hold your hand" began to blare as loud as the old speakers could muster, we would begin to dance around like possessed women. Completely free and untouched by the burdens of embarrassment or shyness (things you don't learn until middle school). We jumped and rolled and spun around until we needed to slurp water from the tap in the sink and fall down panting onto the cream leather sofa in a giggling heap. Sometimes on these occasions, my sister and I would raid the dress up box and throw on floppy hats, boas, and sequined shoes. My mom would voluntarily dawn plastic necklaces and clip on earings, then one by one we'd form a Congo line, my mom in the front with me attached and her hip and then my little sister holding on to my legs, we'd wind and turn and shake our butts until they were ready to fall off. At the end of the day we were exhausted from the pure exhilaration and joy of it all.

A few weeks ago I payed close to four thousand dollars in taxes. A few weeks before that I decided that I was going to have to start dieting again. A few weeks before that I thought briefly about picking up the phone and reconnecting with my father... It didn't even ring once before I hung up. At some point in my 22 years of life, I grew up and missed it somehow. I got mentally and physically old before I was ready... and now I'm pondering how unfair the natural succession of things can be. We all start out life dancing in the living room, and then somewhere along the line we blink and miss the good stuff without noticing or meaning to change.

So tonight I'm going to fall asleep with a half a tube of Icy Hot rubbed on the parts of my back I can reach, cursing the fact that I have to get up early tomorrow morning to go to the gym before work, and wondering periodically where I'm going to pull grocery money from this month. But when I was driving home this evening and 97.1 the Drive decided to play a Beatles marathon, I had an emotionally significant memory jog that sent me spiraling into a welcomed distraction. As I chucked my half smoked cigarette out the window and belted out the lyrics to "Hard days night", I forgot for a few minutes how badly my back was hurting, and took some comfort in the lasting significance of simpler times.

Everyone has a weird neighbor

It's true. Everyone has, has had, or is going to have a weird neighbor in their lifetime. When I was younger it was the lady in apartment 8A who gave out pennies at Halloween and swept the green hallway carpet. When we moved to the suburbs it was the kid who talked about being a train engineer and refused to sleep inside the house. Now that I'm 22 and living on my own in the ghetto of bum fuck Egypt northern Illinois, its the Ronald McDonald guy.

I have lived in this run down excuse for a townhouse complex for almost 3 years now, which is 2 years longer then the cornfield that now resides as my backyard. Although I miss the view of the vacant dog poo filled field that once resided there, the cornfield is growing on me (no pun intended). It is working out to be a welcomed distraction from the fact that without it, the Laidlaw Trucking company lights up my life (and my bedroom) from 5am to 11pm 7 days a week 365 days a year. When there aren't overturned lawn chairs and half inflated kiddie pools filled with leaves and cigarette butts, it's a pretty pleasant place to hang out. But of course, the laws of crazy neighbordom are as follows:

1. No matter where you live, even if its on an ice berg floating in the most frigid, remote part of the entire planet, someone will move in next to you that you cannot stand.

2. This person will, no matter how blunt you are, never get it through their heads that you cannot stand them.

Enter Ronald McDonald. The guy that moved into the apartment next to me, and possibly the whitest person of all time. Now Don't get me wrong, I am as white as they come, but this guy is the poster child for Ginger kids. The day he moved in he rang my doorbell to introduce himself, and when I opened the door I was momentarily blinded by a red afro so crimson and flaming, I was suddenly overcome by the urge to watch Carrot Top do stand up for the first time in my life. I blinked uncontrollably, hoping to my retinas would return to their normal size long enough for me to regain my depth perception and shut the door. Instead, my hesitation must have cued my new neighbor to start in on "Hey I just moved in next door wow you have a cool place it looks like mine but backwards you have cats...?" and with that he invited himself in. So now I'm thinking great, he's not peddling chicken McNuggets like I hoped and hes actually my new neighbor and now he's in my kitchen for some reason.

Being the quick thinker that I am, I somehow managed to reel in my shock long enough to make some awkward small talk about tattoos and electric bills and motion wildly in the direction of the door... a not so subtle herding tactic that works better with people who are socially aware enough to take hints. Not Ronald. Ronald decided that since we had become such great friends since he had made himself at home on the wrong side of our wall, that he would invite me over to watch The Big Lebowski and look at his new poster wall art. Agreeing that "we'd see" was enough to get him out of my house, I was relieved.

Maybe it's the fact that I didn't factor in the proximity to which we live door to door (about 4 inches) or maybe it's the fact that no one else sneaks outside in their PJs to take out the trash at 1am on a Monday, I thought I was safe. Nope. As soon as Ronald heard the squeeeeeeek of my screen door as I crept towards the dumpster like a ninja, he was out on the front lawn in a pair of what looked like blue swim trunks asking me to come in and "see what he'd done with the place". Because I blanked on the "I'm allergic to recessive genetic hair pigment" speech I had been practicing, I found myself inside his apartment and staring at the meticulously black and white color scheme that was his leather chairs and bean bag home decor. He continued to go on and on about the Chinese symbol poster art he had gotten "on sale at bed bath and beyond" until I finally mustered a "Wow, I thought MY apartment made me look single. you win"

And with that, he did not get the hint.

On and on he went, repeatedly trying to usher me upstairs because "the DVD player is up there" and trying to coax me into complimenting his sad single man bachelor pad in the ghetto because of his ability to color code things that are black with things that are not black. All I could do to stifle an "I'm lovin it" (ba da ba ba baaa) was to wander up the stairs which were indeed just like mine, but backwards.

About 20 minutes into the Big Lebowski (and 15 minutes into my incessant efforts and spontaneous mind generated teleportation back into my own apartment with the door locked, I said I was ridiculously tired and had to go to bed. Which was true, I was tired of hearing about his dead father. Ronald MacDonald does not have parents. He's an alien from planet Big Mac and the fact that he was trying to convince me otherwise was an outright lie. I also had not yet seen the Hamburgler around, which made me nervous because I KNOW he's always lurking and I will NOT be a victim of hamburger theft. Period.

So Ignoring Ronald worked for a while, because he stopped asking me when we were going to "finish the movie" after about 3 months. However, thats when Ronald started having parties. Not just any parties. It wasn't a gathering of other pigment less genetic lottery losers, no, it was like gangbang night at the taco bell. Yep, thats right, every single one of mr MacDonalds friends was of the Spanish speaking persuasion, which I thought was amazing, hilarious, and dumbfounding. Watching Ronald blast Reggeton music from the second story of our 1970s townhouse complex and scoot around like he was DJing the Latin Soul awards was funnier then anything I could have ever hoped to fall directly into my living space lap. He looked like he was in the worlds easiest page of "Where's Waldo" for beginners.

The next morning, there were chips and beer cans and paper plates strewn all over our lawn. This happens every time he has a BBQ, which pisses me off almost as much as the fact that I cant sleep over the thumping base sounds of his delusional siestas. So I taped a sign to his door. It read:

"Please clean up our lawn. Unless you are planning on growing a chip and beer tree, all of this shit needs to go in the dumpster. You should also return your assorted lawn chairs to their upright position and put them neatly on your side of the doors. Otherwise I will be forced to hide them in the cornfield, and you don't want that. PS: How come you are the only white person you know? -Your neighbor"

Haven't spoken to him since. It was more or less the same way I got rid of my college roommate, except this time I didn't have to use clam chowder... which is good.... because that was a mess.