Why Plinko hates you.

the life and times of one jaded motherfucker.

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Uncle Phil

:.News of the World.:
Washington Post
NY Times
Howard Kurtz
Leonard Pitts
The Onion

:.On Wisconsin.:
Milwaukee J-S
Wheeler Report
Gannett Wisconsin

Penny Arcade


:.Current Book.:
Woman In the Dark - Dashiell Hammett

:.Last 6 Books.:
The Catcher In the Rye - JD Salinger
Grendel - John Gardner
Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha - Roddy Doyle
The Road - Cormac McCarthy
Theft - Peter Carey
Saturday - Ian McEwan

:. Bands .:
Dismemberment Plan
Jets to Brazil
Promise Ring

Mark Helprin
Kazuo Ishiguro
Wilkie Collins
William Faulkner
Philip K. Dick
Dashiell Hammett

The Lord of the Rings
J.R.R. Tolkien
Frank Herbert
Dan Simmons
The Dark Tower
Stephen King

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Friday, June 29
Okay, so I'm still me despite a few days of hoping really hard that I would get to trade spots with someone way cooler than me, like Tom Cruise or Robert Goulet or something. It just goes to show that if you really put your mind to something, you're a moron and you should go back to being a lazy spank like you were before.

In other news, I worked hard tonight. Yeah, go me.
Beefy bought a PS2, so now I can watch DVDs! This excites me, can you tell? I rented Dune (the Sci-Fi Channel movie that's like four hours long) and I'm going to try to watch it before work tomorrow, which is gonna be hard since I normally get up about two hours before I have to go to work. Oh well, I'll watch half tomorrow morning and the other half Saturday morning before I head up to jimmyland for a little LAN action.

I watched Castaway the other day. I liked it. Heck, I even LIKED it that they did like 45 minutes after he gets off the island (no spoiler complaints they showed that in the fucking previews, okay!?!) . All you naysayers can suck it, you hear me? Suck it! I don't want to get into messy details, but I enjoyed it a lot. More than Shadow of the Vampire, which was a really really great idea for a movie, but it didn't do much for me. I guess it didn't surprise me at all, and I like to be surprised.

'Okay, mister-smartypants,' you're thinking, 'well why did you like Castaway when they gave the damn ending away in the commercials but not Shadow of the Vampire where they gave nothing away more than the premise?? Huh why huh why?'

After beating you unmercifully for doubting me, I would pick your remains up off the floor and tell you to suck it.

But, seriously, what I liked about Castaway was how interested I got in Tom Hanks' character, without him having to say anything. The first half hour or so of the movie was a bit blah, I agree with everyone on that. I was interested not in the plot, but in its exposition. That's smart-head talk for how the story unfolds, rather than what unfolds. Castaway, in its own way (and I'm not saying it was the best movie I've seen in a while, its not, just one I disagree with many people on), made me think a lot, a lot about what was going on inside people's minds, and to me that's the best thing a movie can do, it's stimulating. That's why I was very interested in the way the movie wrapped up, I was very interested in how the characters dealt with what was a tough and emotional situation. The net results didn't matter to me as much as how they reached those conclusions.

Meh. Before you go thinking I plan on making this a place for intellectual musings, keep in mind that I am a lazy fuck.

Tuesday, June 26
So I'm like sore and stuff. I think I strained (read got a minor tear) in my shoulder when I went tubing. So instead of leaving the house to go out and be physically active, I spent all day on the internet, job-hunting. There's like a lot of jobs out there, none of which I am qualified for.
I rented Castaway yesterday, but I haven't watched it yet, and I'm sure there's plenty of other issues I ought to be bringing up, but my mind is fairly blank.
I bought Half-Life: Blue Shift yesterday, I'm just now remembering, and it was cool, except I paid $30 for a single player episode that took all of two hours to play though. Opposing Force took me two days, so I was very disappointed in that. Supposably I get a $10 rebate since I bought Opposing Force already, so we'll see how well they hid the coupon.

I was enjoying my morning, playing CS on Chi Mayhem, my favorite large CS server, this morning, having a good time when my mom calls, because she managed to lock herself out of the house while home for lunch, so I had to get up and get dressed and drive all the way across town to let her back in, that's how my day has been so far.

Monday, June 25
Okay, so in order to stop depressing people, I will post happy stuff here today.

Today I went out boating with Adam and Adam and Branden, during which I got to 'tube' for the first time. It was pretty cool, flying around on an innertube over Lake Winnebago at 35 mph. It's tiring though; my shoulders are sore. My Dad got back from Canada yesterday, so we have to have Father's Day tomorrow.

Supposedly, some web space comes with our RoadRunner Account, so if I'm really ambitious, I'll see what I can do about setting up this thing that way, which would give me a lot more room to try stuff out, plus host some images and maybe even some small files. I've always wanted to do a sort of mp3 of the day/week thing, maybe put up a DoD guide or something, and who knows what. My money is on me doing nothing about it past typing about it right here and right now. . . That's just the kind of guy I am. If I were in any way ambitious, or at least not completely and totally lazy, I would have done some writing by now and be rich and famous and have won lots of awards and then I wouldn't care about any of you in fact I would probably be rude to you if I ever saw any of you because that's the kind of person I would be and you wouldn't want that now would you, no you want me to keep posting here for your enjoyment so just be glad things are the way they are no matter how much I decide to make this here sentence run on, got it?

/me is a loser. . .

Saturday, June 23
So Blogger added a spell check, I don't think I'll use it, even though I kinda enjoy my world's-worst typist title. Not much to say, I had too much to drink, which by Plinko standards means I'm tipsy. . .
My mind has been pretty much occupied by two things lately, finding a girlfriend and finding a new job. Neither is going well, I mostly find things that seem like a good idea to me but not necessarily to any other parties that may be involved.
That said, any girls whom I've hit on lately would be wise to read this little note from Scott Adams, the man who brings us laughter via his Dilbert strip, it is, as they say, 'teh funny.'

(yes that was on purpose)

Friday, June 22
Ack. I had to get up at 8:00 this morning, which doesn't sound too bad for those of you who go to bed before 5:00. For me, it sucked. That and I worked 11 hours today. The first three were training, so I guess they don't totally count, except for keeping me form sleeping.

No updates on the job front. I did calculate that at my current rate of income/spending I'll be totally broke by August 1, provided I don't spend any money on gas, food, clothes or entertainment of any kind. So there's that.

Other than that I'm mostly tired. So, instead of bitching here, I'm gonna go crawl into my bed and try to get some shuteye.

Tuesday, June 19
I'm going to leave for work in a minute, so I don't know why I'm even posting right now. I got to tag along for a press tour of EAA today, and it was neat. I've sen most of it already, but this was something to do outside on a beautiful (if windy) day. Too bad I don't get paid for it eh?

Today I'm turning in my application for the web department at work, keep your fingers crossed.

Went out to eat with my mom and sister last night at Callahan's and it wasn't too hot. The food there is just as sucky as most places in town. The family seems okay, at least those of us suffering in town while my brother and father are on a fishing vacation in Quetico National Park, Ontario, Canada.

I guess that's enough excitement for one post. Wouldn't want y'all to have your heads spinning all day just because of little ol' me.

Sunday, June 17
Ahh. . . my weekend has arrived. Since it's Father's Day, I ought to be doing something nice for Dad, but he's in Canada on a fishing trip, so I guess he's enjoying his Father's Day just fine already.

My mood has lightened somewhat lately, as it usually does. I've been thinking rather hard about working for the newspaper's web site. I think it would be good for me. Well see if management agrees.

In other news, I chipped a tooth last night. Yeah, go me. I hope it doesn't require any expensive dentist-action, because I remain uninsured. Work has been so-so, nothing exciting has happened since the storm. I've been spending most of my free time reading books and playing the MAME 32k arcade emulator.

Friday, June 15
So anyway, I've been crabby lately, so I haven't posted. Work is still ticking me off, and the web folks have really been ticking me off. They've been fooling around with the content we send and deliberately ignoring what relatively minor instructions go along with each night's news. If you've ever visited our suckass web site (available by clicking the link to your left marked 'work') you'd see how relatively little they do for us every day. Admittedly, from what management tells me they're apparently too busy up there in Winnepeg making porn sites to care much about our soon-to-run-out contract with them, but I still get very pissed whenever I look at it becase I'm responsible for getting them the content and making it easy for them to decide what to do with it.
All this frustration has led me to think about applying to our soon-to-be-created web department at the paper. Of course, my HTML skills are pretty low (look at this site) and I'm still teaching myself Frontpage, but I've just gotten so worked up about how it works I figure they'll want me helping with it.

Wednesday, June 13
High and dry here.

So, if there's anybody out there that didn't already know, we had ourselves our own version of a hurricane in Oshkosh last night. I tried to enjoy it as best I could, loving storms as I do. Driving around in it was very neat, especially after it calmed down, looking at deep puddles and downed trees everywhere in the dark, something I'll always remember.

So much news, so little energy.
The storm somehow resulted in having to work at Fond du Lac to get the paper done. It was very strange. Somehow it felt it was more how I always imagined a newsroom should look and feel. Of course, I worked my butt off, and once again, it doesn't really matter to anyone.

I guess I can freely say now that the man I guess I would refer to as my mentor retired last week. I went and visited him at school this morning, as he was picking up the mess that was his classroom one last time. It was sad, not because I won't see him or talk to him any more, but more for all the kids that won't have a To Lynch there looking to help them as I, and so many others, did. There's talk of me replacing him in one capacity, coaching my beloved forensics team. That more than anything has thrown me off for the last few weeks.
Some part of me has dreamed of taking over that program since I was in high school. Of course, part of that dream was becoming a teacher. Now, once Christine and I broke up, I decided I didn't want to become a teacher, I don't know if the two incidents were related or not, but it was about the same time. I started to really like the newspaper business, and for the last eight months or so my focus has been on making it in journalism. That hasn't exactly worked out so far, as you may guess if you've read much of this site. So, here I am, without a 'real job' and no serious prospect of one, more or less offered to do something that I have always wanted to do, but that will only further hurt any chance I have at a real career of any sort. You can't eat on the forensics coach pay, and the hours would end what career I have already. So, what am I to do? Let Gannett continue to exploit my cheap labor? Give up 10 months of learning and fighting for a place at the newspaper? Give it up to be unappreciated in a different way, breaking my back to win the way Tom did? None of the options look good to me.
The draw towards forensics is, I think, muddied by a woman (isn't everything?). There's a very pretty one pushing me hard to take the coaching job. She wants me to get some third-rate aide-type job with the District so I can do the coaching thing. This idea has some attraction, beyond even being around her, I'd probably get insurance for once in my life, and if I tried hard enough I could get certified while I was working there and move into a comfortable, if not exactly first-class, career in teaching after three years or so of slaving away.
So, forgive me if I've strayed from my usual flippancy. I guess I'm getting seriously sick of my rock-and-a-hard-place choices. I'll get over it, I guess.

Monday, June 11
So, yeah.

The weather cleared up really nicely yesterday (after starting out with rain that could only be described as torrential) so we got to take Ben's dogs out on the boat for an hour or two, which is what I had secretly hoped would be my Sunday activity all along. Of course, we had to fix the boat before we could go out, since Barren's brother has destructive hands of evil.
Then we played Axis and Allies and I squandered my chances to win as Axis because I was, well, foolish.

I'm sure these posts woulds be more exciting if I spent more time with people other than ones who don't have similar websites and post more or less the same news every day, or if I had readers other than the exact same people who read Barren's, Zeb's and Moon's pages.

And I say, little sister, don't you do what your big sister does.

Sunday, June 10
I'm still working on my archives. I found a helpful little tutorial which gives some ideas, but so far no luck.

It's finally the weekend, and I'm gonna spend it being as lazy as possible. If I'm really ambitious I'll do the dishes and clean the kitchen. I might even call my parents.

I've been getting better at doing my local section two nights a week. I did manage to cause my first correction this weekend, with a mistake in a headline, which wasn't caught by anyone else, either, so I don't feel too awful. I saw an ad for a design job in Loveland, Colorado which has me salivating.
Speaking of Colorado, I watched game 7 of the Stanley Cup Finals last night. It was really great to see Ray Bourque finally get to hoist the Cup. Hockey may not be my favorite spectator sport, but it's certainly got the best history and traditions and awards. Yeah, nuts to baseball.

Gonna play Axis & Allies with some friends tonight. I was supposed to go to a housewarming party, but I *forgot* until just now. Ah well, I'm a jerk anyway, won't suprise anyone that I'm not there.


Friday, June 8
Letsee. . .

Work today was good. I got my pages done early, and for once all my heds (headlines) were approved by my boss without revision. That means I'll get hammered in the markup tomorrow, but I'll take what little improvement I can get. See, despite all my bitching, I love my job, I just wish I got paid what people who do the work I do get paid, and even that amounts approximately to peanuts.

I've been good about playing fewer videogames lately. I've even been reading (gasp!) again. The last book I read (The Hours, which faithful Plinko readers will remember from my trip to England) was a real snoozer, at least as far as I was concerned and I finally finished it after three months. In my defense, I read two other books before finishing it. But I just started Rabbit, Redux (John Updike) and I'm actually into reading it. It reminds me of why I majored in English Literature in the first place, and why I ended up shying away from teaching high schools. The book is extremely challenging, especially if you're looking to make moral judgements. Rabbit, Run did that. I remember how divisive the book was in my college classes. How offended all the little feminists were that the book was even read. They couldn't understand how you could read (or write) a book that tells the story of a bad person and still like it. So short-sighted. Anyway, now that I've bored you, I'll get back to the mundane.

Looking forward to the weekend, though mine is still two full workdays away. Somehow, Friday and Saturday retain a weekend feel even though I work on both of them (and at night even). I gues it's because I can hang out with my friends those days —as opposed to my day off, Monday, when I sit around the house all day with nothing to do.

Peace, love, d00d …

Wednesday, June 6
Went to the grocery store this morning. I always spend way more than I plan to, and it seems like there's never any food in the house no matter how much I spend. I'm sure physicists somewhere are hard at work developing a theory as to how this happens.

No other news. I'm wearing my Oshkosh West 2001 Forensics t-shirt right now. Of course, that will have to change before I head off to work. I found a few interesting career leads, which I will need to get on right away.

Today I will make my last visit of the year to West, to tie up the few loose ends on the year and check out the whole WFCA-suspension situation. And ummmmm. . . yeah.

Go Avalanche.

Monday, June 4
Ahhhh . . . weekend.

My brother offered me two Brewers tickets last-minute on Saturday, and I took them. Went with a guy from the sports department at work. I hadn't been to Miller park yet, and it was pretty darned cool. The Brewers even managed to win, the game was actually exciting. We had great great seats and I stuffed myself on overpriced sausages.

I sent out another application, this time to a paper in NC. I think it's a distant longshot at best, though. I heard a lot of rumors this weekend that would affect my career decision-making very heavily. I also finally mentioned how upset I am about my job status to my boss. We'll see if it does any good (it won't). I guess I'm just cynical eh?

"No, not you Plinko!"

Yeah, whatever.

Friday, June 1
Work was almost okay last night. I started out really well but then I got royally screwed by the photo dept. First, they misplaced my secondary art until 9 or so, my cover was due at 9:30, and my primary art showed up about then too, it (the primary photos) were due to my dept at 8:30. So, there I was with an artless cover that was DUE (meaning proofread and sent via theT-1 to Fond du Lac) in half an hour. Of course, the photo weren't exactly stellar either. Then I got just plain stressed out and nothing went well from there. If there's an upside to it, I get to do it again tonight, only without so many pages to in my section, thankfully.

Well, it's Friday, that means I only have two days of work before my weekend begins. No word from the staffing agency yet. At this rate I'll end up being Abraxis' assistant at the EAA lodge all summer for a second job.