Why Plinko hates you.

the life and times of one jaded motherfucker.

E-mail Plinko

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

02/01/2001 - 03/01/2001 03/01/2001 - 04/01/2001 04/01/2001 - 05/01/2001 05/01/2001 - 06/01/2001 06/01/2001 - 07/01/2001 07/01/2001 - 08/01/2001 08/01/2001 - 09/01/2001 09/01/2001 - 10/01/2001 10/01/2001 - 11/01/2001 11/01/2001 - 12/01/2001 12/01/2001 - 01/01/2002 01/01/2002 - 02/01/2002 02/01/2002 - 03/01/2002 03/01/2002 - 04/01/2002 04/01/2002 - 05/01/2002 05/01/2002 - 06/01/2002 06/01/2002 - 07/01/2002 07/01/2002 - 08/01/2002 08/01/2002 - 09/01/2002 09/01/2002 - 10/01/2002 10/01/2002 - 11/01/2002 11/01/2002 - 12/01/2002 12/01/2002 - 01/01/2003 01/01/2003 - 02/01/2003 02/01/2003 - 03/01/2003 03/01/2003 - 04/01/2003 04/01/2003 - 05/01/2003 05/01/2003 - 06/01/2003 06/01/2003 - 07/01/2003 07/01/2003 - 08/01/2003 08/01/2003 - 09/01/2003 09/01/2003 - 10/01/2003 10/01/2003 - 11/01/2003 11/01/2003 - 12/01/2003 12/01/2003 - 01/01/2004 01/01/2004 - 02/01/2004 02/01/2004 - 03/01/2004 03/01/2004 - 04/01/2004 04/01/2004 - 05/01/2004 05/01/2004 - 06/01/2004 06/01/2004 - 07/01/2004 07/01/2004 - 08/01/2004 11/01/2005 - 12/01/2005 12/01/2005 - 01/01/2006 01/01/2006 - 02/01/2006 02/01/2006 - 03/01/2006 04/01/2006 - 05/01/2006 05/01/2006 - 06/01/2006 06/01/2006 - 07/01/2006 07/01/2006 - 08/01/2006 08/01/2006 - 09/01/2006 09/01/2006 - 10/01/2006 10/01/2006 - 11/01/2006 12/01/2006 - 01/01/2007
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Friday, August 30
So, I finally called TDS about my crappy line and DSL service. The tech seems to think its all just a noisy line, which I am inclined to agree with. Lord only knows when it will be fixed, though.
No word from 'the Family' yet. Looking forward to Packer game tonight, Madison tomorrow and par-ty on Monday. I live a full life, you see. I'm even being a little ambitious and making my advertising calls today! Too bad it's a freaking Friday before a holiday weekend, so no one is at work anayway. Whoops.
Practiced some 3on3 CS with the [NAKED] crew last night. Did you know that I'm still in a Counter-Strike clan? Is that enough to take away my 'normal' status? Just wondering.

Uber-Indie label Jade Tree released two mp3s from the current band (Jets to Brazil) of my idol, Blake Schwarzenbach, that will be on their upcoming album. I listened to them about ten times last night when I should have been dreaming about Packer victories and thrift-store bargains. I'm such a nerd for intellectual melancholy music. Sigh.

Thursday, August 29
Speaking of football, now I know why Atom didn't play football in high school.

Well, I just updated my archives again. I've been doing this Blogger thing for just over 1.5 years now. I can hardly fathom it. Anyway, as I was looking through some of the old stuff, I decided to pull out some highlights for you. Two of them were kinda long, so you'll have to look those up on your own. So, without further ado, the best of my hate over the last year and a half:

March 23, 2001

I tell the story about losing my luggage on a bus in Edninburgh.

June 25, 2001

“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?”

June 28, 2001

“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.”

Sept. 2, 2001

Plinko gets stung by a wasp. On his lip. Hilarity ensues.

Sept. 7, 2001

“Meanwhile Atom is complaining rather loudly that Barren 'won't stop hitting him with his beaver.'”

Oct. 19, 2001

“Only I am so masochistic enough to want someone so incredibly self-absorbed and live to tell the tale.
It's my curse. I must shrug my shoulders and accept my fate, even as it pulls me inexorably to my doom. The emotional black hole that is a completely self-absorbed girl grabs me with her foul gravity and draws me into the infinitely dense matter of her self-contained world until I am destroyed by it.

Then I go get a soda”

November 9, 2001.

“Personally, I think a jaded motherfucker like me needs someone who will complain with him more than some slack-jawed ditz who'll just nod her head at me. And that's about as touchy-feely as you muppetfuckers are going to get out of me.”

November 29, 2001

“That might not be so bad in and of itself, but I've more or less been handed the title of 'geek writer' for the paper, so every female in town (who reads the paper- which is to say every female over the age of 60, so I don't know what I'm complaining about) will see me and say to themselves 'there's the guy that writes about video games and why everyone should go to see the Lord of the Rings.'
Somehow I feel that I am going to remain single for the foreseeable future.”

December 10, 2001

“Good signs: she liked my cooking and she said my socks were cute.


March 16, 2002

“If this seems like a wussy girly post without the required levels of hate, I'm sorry, but I will burn your soul with a glimpse of my black rotten heart sometime after the dishes are put away.”

June 11, 2002

“I could put Em down here (on my list of friends who are women) as well, but it's hard to consider someone as a female when she's always threatening to beat you up.”

July 7, 2002

“Speaking of the source of all evil, and by that I mean women …”

July 22, 2002

“I'd like to end this post with a quote: ‘Oh, I'd fuck Moby, I mean he's hott and all, but I'm not really into his music.’”

Well, Sara is back from her honeymoon. I'm happy to have her back, since she rocks. Too bad she had some things to tell me that were pretty upsetting (not about her wedding or about the honeymoon, but about the actions of a certain brat I've complained about before).
It makes me think of some very very mushy stuff I've been thinking about but have decided it's better to not post about. Suffice to say I've been very much into the 'jilted lovesongs' — as my hero Blake calls them — lately. Actually, that sounds a lot worse than it should, but I'll leave it. You can draw your own (wrong) conclusions about what I'm thinking about and I'll laugh at them. Sound good?

Well, I'm sure I'd like to be mean and hateful now, but I just don't feel like it. It's too damn warm and I have a freaking tie on.

Wednesday, August 28
I am getting really crabby about TDS. For three days now the DSL has been going out for several minutes at a time, two or three times an hour. Not only that but our phone has been flaky, too. I'm almost ready to whip out my whiny bitching mode on the TDS customer service crew, but at the moment I'm still too lazy.

I had hoped that I would be getting paid for this month soon, but I'm guessing that it might be a week or two, as we haven't had many advertisers pay their bills yet. Since I'm paying my bills today, I might have to be late on some so that I can be sure of covering them all. If I can start working at the video store thing soon, then I won't have to worry so much. If not, I might be in for a bit of the trouble.

I can't believe Zebby is still asleep. sleeping forever the day after the 'shoot? Sure, that makes sense. But it's 2:30 in the p.m. and he's still sleeping for the third day in a row. I used to get up earlier than that when I worked third shift and got home from work at 8:30 a.m. every day. Next week at this time he'll be getting ready for the school day to end for heaven's sake.

See, I'm becoming more parental now.

Haiku about my day:

Money eludes me.
Computers can eat my ass.
I hate everyone.

Tuesday, August 27
I'll find out Friday about the Family Video thing, in case you were wondering.
I have a meatloaf in the oven if you're curious to know more about me.
And that's about it.

The proofs of Issue #3 are in. I'll be gallavanting down to Fondy to peruse them soon.
After that I'm jetting off to the Family Video for my final interview. I can't believe it takes this long to find out if you can work renting movies and video games to people. Sheesh.

The phone has been ringing all day today and yesterday with people that hang up after one ring and/or aren't there when I pick up. It's starting to really really piss me off.

The world of viruses and worms are pissing me off. Firstly, I had to remove Nimda from my PC during TBCS. Seems like a file I downloaded through KaZaA was infected with it. Now I'm getting periodic e-mail messages saying my Yahoo account is sending people Klez. Now, the thing with that is that I only use my Yahoo account via Web Mail, so I don't think it's possible for my account to send people Klez without me doing it on purpose, since I'd have to create the e-mail and attach the files myself. Then they'd have to get through Yahoo's virus scan, since they scan every damn thing you attach or receive anyway. Not to mention the fact that I just installed and updated Norton A/V 2003 this weekend.
More than likely, someone else that knows me has it and their Outlook is sending it out by forging my (and maybe others') e-mail as the sender. I remember a few weeks ago someone sent it to my Yahoo account (probably A-Lo) because they had it and it was forging out Phil Weston's e-mail addy on itself. So, kiddies, get yourself checked since it could be one of you making me look bad. And I know none of you would ever want to do that.


Monday, August 26
It's 2:00 p.m. and Lil' Zebby is still asleep. I guess he doesn't need the same dosage of ether to knock him out as Beefy did.

Today has been a decidedly unproductive day for yours truly. It makes me pine for that part-time job, so I could at least be getting paid for some of this wasted time. At least there's a Packer game on tonight to fill my evening.

Sunday, August 25
Well, sweetie, at least I wasn't so drunk I linked to my own page to tease someone else.

The TBCS was a wash for me. I had a bit of fun, but the overwhelming majority of the weekend was spent in two games that my computer decided to run only in ass mode, so it was nigh impossible to drain more than a few drops of fun from either the Battlefield 1942 demo or America's Army. Of course, WCIII and any Halflife mod were all pretty and I had no problems with my NES emulator, but those games all had their limits. Downloading some updated drivers could have helped, but someone was too lazy to set up the Intar-Web, which pissed off 65 of the 66 attendees to the Shoot.
Not to mention the fact that this TBCS had the highest go-tard to human ratio of any to date and I was in a normal Plinko mood all weekend. The redeeming factor was that for all the time everyone played it, BF1942 is a sloppy, buggy game and, despite my well-earned reputation, I was practically drowned out by the whining of everyone else, which was nothing short of constant.

Well, it's Sunday night, which means an evening of bad-guy tv watching and whatnots.


Friday, August 23
Well, I have my own Little Zebby to call my own. I bet someone's very very jealous.

Is TBCS truly upon us? Thank goodness, I need a relaxing distraction.

The third issue of the magazine went to the printer this morning. I'm not even going to tell you about the soap opera that came of it, either.
Well, I'll tell. But only if you ask.

I hung out with my old high school/college pal Nick tonight. He rocks, an adjective that can be applied to many people I know.
Don't mistake this for kindheartedness on my part. I am in a grumpy mood. I hate people, paces and things.

I just sound sorta cheery because Nick gave me copies of two 'childrens books' he wrote and photocopied. They can best be described as silly. And I giggled. Without even drinking any alco-mohol.

Tuesday, August 20
A quick addendum to tonights posting.

I am only #36 when searching for: Bachelor party AND strippers AND ohio on Yahoo? What's wrong with this world!?

I had a hilarious MSN conversation with D.C.-area cool guy I, Zombie tonight. I had to record the best part for the permanent record.

I am adding two new things to the 'unhealthy affections' list, namely Zombie and our fellow CS clanmate, Spooka. I want them to live in my closet and entertain me when I am lonely. Too bad they live in the nation's capital and Iowa, respectively. But a man can dream.
Can't he?

Oh and speaking of MSN conversations, I am apparently too poor to buy Velveteen clones from UPB. But, as above, a man can dream.
Or maybe I'm wrong about the whole thing.

Have you ever not told someone something that would make you sound stupid because you figured soon enough the issue would be resolved and you wouldn'y have to look like an idiot?
I have the opposite problem, sorta. See, when I do something dumb, or put myself into a dumb situation, it will never resolve itself until I make myself look like a (bigger) dweeb (than you already think I am) by telling people about it.
That said, I found my phone, it had fallen from the pocket of my pants between the seat and the armrest of my car on Saturday night, and I just knew I would not be able to find it until I fessed up and told everyone I had lost it. 'Lo and behold! I found it this morning.

Part 3 of Dune was pushed back to sometime next week, which is sorta okay because I have been sorta busy putting the magazine out this week.
It's about a third or a half done already, which is nice.

The SWEF is home, but I haven't talked to her much yet.
I just looked over some blogskins, checking out new template ideas, but I have become rather attached to this one, so it stays.

I could say some more about the wedding, but nothing remarkable or exciting happened. I don't feel like emotional baggage today at all. So you get what you got.

And this is all I gots.


Monday, August 19
And work begins on the third issue of the Lake Winnebago B2B. I still have a story to write and photos to take, but other than that things are coming along nicely.
Zebby made an appearance at the house today with his mommy. It looks like he'll be moving in right after the crapshoot, which I am looking forward to immensely.
With any luck I'll have the whole magazine off to the printers no later than Thursday afternoon, leaving plenty of time to do setup and other day-before-TBCS nonsense.

And, being the absentminded loon I am, I managed to misplace my phone. I am a bumbling schmuck. Apparently.

You didn't have to agree, you know.

Sunday, August 18
I've got some sort of white trash convention going on my front stoop right now. I want ever so much for them to get their asses somewhere else so that I can take dinner over to Pyro and Machine's hizouse. But they just keep sitting there, arguing. Meanwhile the pork smells soooo tempting. . .

I took my big fancy test at the Family Video. I never imagined that you'd need to take such a test to check videos out to morons. This test, which actually almost took the whole promised hour (because you could only do one part at a time, and then you waited for the time to be up) consisted of the following: picking out errors in a list of names, cities, states and monetary amounts, picking out appropriate alphabetical filing for a long list of names, finding mistakes in some simple matrices, doing somewhat difficult arithmetic (not just simple [look, I fix my typographical errors] adding and subtracting, one question asked for the square root of 20,736), a series of story problems, a reading comprehension test, a spelling test and an analogy test (this one was hard — if you weren't an English major — 'Assesment is most like: 1) story 2) tax 3) feat 4) fence). I actually finished all the questions, and I think you weren't supposed to be able to finish the whole thing. So, maybe, just maybe, I'm smart enough to work with the ditzes at the store. We'll see.

I thought for sure that the gathering on my stoop would have broken up by now. No such luck. I'm going to have to tiptoe around them while carrying a Nesco roaster ful of BBQ pork. I hope they don't mug me for it.

Oh, and for those of you checking your smart-headedness, the answers to the two questions are 144 and 2) tax.

Oh, and I could write a book about how most people's IQs dip by about 40 points from their already-pathetic levels when they get behind the wheel of an automobile. But I've bitched enough for this hour. Maybe I'll be back later.
Or maybe I'll eat some dinner.

Well, Sara Ann's wedding was a feat. I want all my weddings to be so nice and cool as hers was.

I look forward to some tasty BBQ at Peter and Eric's later today. I guess it would be cool if I had more interesting things to say, but what are you going to do about it, huh?

Friday, August 16
I gots my hairs cut. Nows I looks gud.

You know, I've never regretted putting anything online, but … The pic of me with the beard is getting way way out of hand. Just thought I'd mention that.

I had my second interview at Family Video this afternoon. I think I will be working there. They are looking for assistant managers in FdL and Appleton, Mr. Shaft, if you can still bring yourself to apply for a job. I will likely not be becoming any kind of responsible party, since then I would have to commute to one of our neighboring cities and I just don't feel like it, though being in Appleton would mean I would never run into people that would know me from the magazine or from forensics, which would be a bonus. So the smart money (and we know there's lots of that rolling around) is on Plinko the video store grunt making his debut in the next few weeks.

So, I'm pissed because someone told me today that a certain brat of an ex- of mine took it upon herself to edit the last issue of the magazine for us and mail it back to us. The sheer volume of nuts that must take is of the sort that is beyond my meager imagination to comprehend. Of course, it hasn't shown up in the mail yet, but I wonder how I'm going to keep myself from breaking her pretty little head when I see her tomorrow.
Mr. Atom, with his retribution-themed erector set, built me a response-in-wating that I think will appease my thirst for bloody vengeance. I'll tell you more about it when the time comes.

Last night was another good time. I am seriously considering softening my stance on women. Proposed revisions to the code are thus: "Women give birth to all that is sick, twisted and vile." would now read: "Girls are pretty, tee hee." Give me some feedback on the changes. Now I just need to convince someone to soften their stance toward me from detatched flirting to sweaty physical contact (think that comment will come back to haunt me? Let's find out!).

As much as some people out there make me go all batshit insane with the ultraviolence, there are those who temper that fury, even if they do take my picture and create unspeakable horrors with it. Anyway, it seems like all the bad guys (and several not so bad guys) have gone out of their way to shed the badness and help each other get their ducks in a row. Thanks guys, I hate you a little bit less than everyone else!

Thursday, August 15
Lets see. I'm all hippity-hoppity because tonight we're watching the second half of Dune and eating Chinese food, apparently. It's cool to watch Dune and cool to eat the Chinese food, but there will be a girl, there. So that ratchets the excitement up to rabbit-like porportions.

I also have an interview at Family Video tonight. I hope it goes well, since I want to get out and work some soon so that I can, you know, pay my bills. I'm sure after two or three days of work at any new part-time job I might get, you'll see me crying and whining about it damn near every day here. But we'll all pretend that I didn't cry and whine about not having the job beforehand. Okay? OKAY??

The brother is moving out this weekend so that Zebby can move in on some as of yet undetermined day.

And I'm considerably less anxious about the wedding Saturday now, as I spoke with the bride-to-be on the phone shortly after posting and she assured me that there will plenty of people that I can hang with and to feel free to ignore you-know-who as much as I want. Rock. And, since the wedding will take up my Saturday until midnight or possibly even later, there will be no viewing of the Lord of the Rings for the Lord of Sweetness.

Tuesday, August 13
The desperate search for part-time employment continues.
I'm looking accusingly at you all for not being managers at places where I might work in my copious spare time who would give me a job in a heartbeat. Personally I think Mr. Jones and I should lay some smack down on stupid human resources people.

So, another evening of schmoozing is upon me, I'll have to put a tie on and everything. I sometimes enjoy these things. The food is always good, if a little on the light side. It mostly depends on me finding someone interesting to talk to. See, I'm usually one of the two or three youngest attendees. I keep thinking I would like to talk to the people working the catering aspects, since they look more like me and my friends that the 40 and 50 year olds who make up the majority of Business After Hours attendees.

I've noticed that I've been especially edgy and surly lately. And by edgy I don't mean I'm like the latest shows on the Fox network, I mean that I might fly into a torrent of anger at any moment. I'm sure that I have my psychological reasons for being this way (try reading this site if you need hints), but I mostly feel it's because everyone is deliberately being stupid all the time and it's about damn time someone does something about it. Fortunately, I don't own any guns, or else I might have killed five or six people already today, mostly for driving like a go-tard.
Today marked the first day in which I could no longer ignore the fact that I have to go to a friend's wedding Saturday. I would totally be looking forward to it, except the fact that the evil evil one (not the Evil One or the SWEF, mind you) will be there and I am uncomfortable just thinking about it. I almost wish I'd tried harder to find a date, but I'm going to tough out my decision and hope that there are enough people there that I can stand talking to that also despise my ex.

Fortunately for me, I have the P tomorrow and then (fingers crossed) watching the second half of Dune Thursday and then the P again Friday to cheer me up first.
I need to test my networking skills in a few minutes, since we finally bought the router for the office.

I never mentioned the shirt Pyro bought for me at GenCon, I will wear it Friday because it is a prime example of cool.

I'm highly disappointed that no one has visited Dasco yet by clicking my link. Get on it, people.

My college roommate, Nick, told me yesterday he was moving to Alaska to take an Americorps job. I plan on visiting him when funds allow. Sign up now if you want to accompany me.

Monday, August 12
I have quit playing Warcraft 3 online until they patch it. Like, I'm sure you all care and all, but the Night Elves are just broken and I don't plan on playing until they're fixed. So there's my stand on that.

Someday, maybe, some kid is supposed to move into my house, but he never speaks to me so I'm not sure.

I have to get some work done, otherwise I will be like a useless suckbag Iike I think everyone else is.

Sunday, August 11
So, I cut off my unhealthy affections list rather quickly yesterday. So I've thought of some more things that fall under that category:

The Ottawa Senators: A hockey team that plays in a city I've never visited, is never on televesion and well I guess they have fairly cool unis and all, but, no one knows why, I like them. But for some reason I follow them almost as closely as I follow the all hollowed Packers. I could almost put Swedish RW Daniel Alfredsson on the list, but I'll just leave him under the Sens.

Minion Pro: I think it's unhealthy to have a thing for any font, and this one gets me all excited. Of course, you all realize that that fact (that it's unhealthy to love fonts) makes A. Lo the biggest pervert, ever.

I'm sure there will be more things added in the future, since I'm a person with unhealthy affections galore, you know. But mostly, I'm stuffed so full of food I could burst. Shawn's parents know how to go overboard with food like no one else. I think that my house is now packaged with 50% more Plinko.
You know because I'm so big now.
That I ate all that food.
You know?

Saturday, August 10
I've got a link for anyone who ever wonders why I'm so jaded.

Other things that jade me:

Windows text highlighting. I'm sure they could have made it dumber, like just have it select random letters when you click and drag or something, I guess. But its current state is sucky enough for me.

Bloatware: Right on Moon!

People. Yeah, you know who you are.

Since I think being cheery would be a positive thing for me, the following is a list of some things I have an unhealthy affection for:

Tycho Brahe: My personal hero. When I read his posts my legs turn to jell-o. I think he's the funniest living thing in the universe.

Saab. I love my car, but I don't have an unhealthy affection for it. No, my love for my Corolla is pure and true. My feelings about Saab, on the other hand, are more in the vein of fanboy erotic fan fiction. I just verified their site, and spent 30 minutes drooling over the 9-3 Wiggin, which is really not as cool, performance-wise, as a WRX or a BMW 330 but since it's Saab it makes me, well you know . . . swoon.

Well, I could list more, but I spent so much time at the Saab site that I have to leave to play basketball now. Whoops.

Friday, August 9
Boy oh boy, another weekend almost upon me.
No news on the second job front, though I will be getting paid to hang out at Thrivent (formerly AAL) all afternoon Saturday. I hope I can run into Bill Harkey there, though I think it's unlikely considering the size of that operation.
Anyway, I got some work done, played some Battle.net WCIII, decided I'm sorry that there's no GenCon for me even if I never buy anything. I might still enter Milwaukee Sunday for other stuff to do, but that depends on what others decide to do.

The SWEF is gone for a week or so, headed off to Boston for vacation, which means my 9:30 ams will be free for the entirety of next week, since I usually chat with her around that time every day. I don't know why I felt the need to share that with you, but there it is!

Thursday, August 8
So I got my first real complaint about something I've written for publication. Does that make me a real journalist now?
Anyway, it was a disagreement with my presentation of a certain business model in an article in the July issue (a little late, isn't it?). It was a disagreement which I consider to border on the absurd, sort of like if I told you you were lying when you told me you were wearing shorts because in reality you were wearing swim trunks, big difference there. Actually, now that I think of it, that example is not quite right, it's more like if I was lying because I called a tomato a fruit, which is silly because tomatoes are fruits (biologically), even if people like to call them vegetables.

But it's nice to know that I'm doing something that could piss people off, you know?

Wednesday, August 7
Will Psycho Ninja ever update his site again? Who knows? I mean, c'mon man, you've got the laziness record done and done. You can rejoin the blogging world and bask in your tirumph of lameness any day now.


Yes, I know you're all just dying for more details on my Warcraft III exploits, but I have other things to say.
Despite my ineptitude at ad sales, we're doing much better this month, or so the little birds tell me.

I'm still looking desperately for part-time work, you'd think that I could at least get a call back from these places. It's not like I don't have eight years' worth of retail/restaurant experience, or a college degree. Is it so hard to think I might be able to deliver pizzas or check out movies to the masses in my spare time? Maybe they're afraid that I might ruin their track record of crappy service and stoned employees or something.

I want to go to GenCon this year, but unfortunately the publishing millions still reside in the coffers of our numerous potential advertisers. I'm doing my best to shake some loose, but the jingle of phat coin is not nearly so phat as to allow me to fund a trip to see fat chicks jingle in their chainmail outfits this weekend.

I make good chicken parmagiana. That's all I have to say about that.

I also am not too bad at the Warcraft III on Battlenet. Apparently, the things that annoy me about playing the computer are things most human players can't do, so I've done a good job of smoking the people I've played against. My results so far: 1v1: win. 1v1: win. 6 player FFA: 2nd, 2v2: loss due to disconnection (we were beating the tar out of the other team when TDS went down last night for six hours) and tonight a 2v2 win. I don't fool myself into thinking I'm like a l337 Warcraft lifer or anything, the matching system ensures that I'm seeing mostly newbie players, but some of the players I or my team has beaten were guys with much higher rankings that me, so that's cool and the gang, you know?

And ummm. . . I hate you.

Tuesday, August 6
Business would be so much nicer if sales weren't necessary. By sales I don't mean the actual process of making transactions, but rather the evil evil process of going up to total strangers and telling them they ought to buy something. It doesn't matter if what you're selling is snake oil or if its the greatest wonder of Uberweb technology. Being a salesman makes you a card-carrying muppetfucker.
That said, I went around trying to make sales calls again today and let me tell you I've never sucked so horribly at anything as I do at selling things. I think it's mostly due to the fact that I hold the deepest contempt for the salesman and his ilk and I just feel dirty inside any time I have to try and sell someone on advertising with the magazine. People should be able to figure out for their damn selves that advertising would probably be very good for them and call us. If they need me to tell them, then they probably shouldn't be in business at all.

So, it looks like Little Zebby will be moving into the Plinko home soon. That was the source of my scary warning at the end of the last post.

Also, and I know I'm going to regret mentioning this but, Shelly is apparently coming over tonight for the first half of Dune and to eat whatever it is I feel like cooking. Blah. I hate myself.

Monday, August 5
How are all y'all today?

I've been working all day, and let me tell you it's weird.
I'm going to go turn in my application at Family Video as soon as I'm done with this. The woman who was working (some sort of manager, I hope) practically asked me to apply for the manager's job when I asked for an app. I don't know if that's a good or bad sign.
I've decided to put the Nowhere page on hold indefinitely. Blogger ate a lengthy post yesterday and I got very pissed off. The problem with Blogger, as much as I love it is that it works great for a long time. So long that you get lulled into a false sense of security and sooner or later you stop copying and pasting your updates until one day the sucker eats and hour's worth of typing. That and if you want to see someone complain about local news coverage, Tony Palmeri seems to do a pretty good job of picking nits, so why duplicate the effort?

There's potentially big news on the horizon and unfortunately for me it doesn't involve women or money. Just a drastic change in living arrangements. When everythings in place I'll fill you in on the details, suffice to say it's like I'll be a daddy.
That oughtta scare everyone.

Sunday, August 4
So, I'm a little stiff from going jet skiing with Barren three times in the last three days. I like the chance to get outside, even if means I might run into, you know, bears.
Have you ever woken up in the middle of the night suddenly, and then have lightning strike really close to you less than a second later? I think that's totally freaky, but it happens to me every time there's a storm. I love storms, it's the only time I really sleep well. But every once in while I get this freaked out feeling and I practically jump out of bed and then in that next instant theres a flash and a deafening crash of thunder. Some part of me must get agitated when all those electrons start getting ready to jump up to a storm cloud or something. Weird. So, that woke me up this morning, and then I got all weird again because I couldn't tell what time it was (the lightning had knocked the power out) and then I remembered that I had left the Corolla's rear windows cracked, so I bolted outside to shut them and got completely drenched in the process.
I washed the car for the first time yesterday, which meant a lot of time trying to scrape Yooper bugs off the bumber and mirrors. Those things stain, man. Of course, the torrential downpour this morning probably did almost as good a job of getting the bugs off as I did when washing it.

Part-time employment continues to elude me. I'll keep trying, I promise. I wish could just get paid to do what Howard Kurtz does, but I don't think anyone will ever pay me to write the Daily Nowhere, which is probably as close as I'll ever get. I also should get paid to be the SWEF's personal psychologist. Just and FYI.

Friday, August 2
I think we're dangerously close to the 34th of July now, so here goes, UPB:

My story of a long-held grudge about the past is not a story of trauma or torture or anything, as I am one lucky sumbitch when it comes to not having terrible terrible things happen in one's childhood. My story is simple and silly and yet I still rail about it for a veritable eternity any time it comes up in coverstation.

By the time I was a senior in high school I was one of a large group of very talented kids, we had one of those classes that more or less carried the school plays, musical and forensics team pretty much all by ourselves. At West those classes came about every four or five years, I could right now name three or four other such classes, but I'm digressing.
I was not nearly the most talented actor of all those kids, I was, at best the third best and I think that's probably wishful thinking to say that much.

Anyway, our senior year play for the WHSFA state one-act play competition was a condensed version of Shakespeare's The Comedy of Errors. In essence it's a two sets of twins crazy mistaken-identity fish-out-of-water comedy. I played one of the servant twins, (and I got to be the one with the funnier acts, too, yay me!) and it was a good fricking show. It took a few weeks for it to come together but by the time we got to District it was very very smooth and with all the physical comedy (I got smacked around like a skinny geek at a geek-smacking convention) people loved us, and we breezed to State, as 75% of all the schools did.
That was my fourth visit to State, held that year at UW-Stevens Point, we had won the top award all three previous times, and the school had won seven in a row. About 10% of the schools at State earn the 'Critic's Choice' as they call it. When we got there, we watched a crappy production of a snoozer play about teenagers wishing on stars and then went to set up. Right before we went on (it takes like an hour and a half) we saw that the play we had seen had just been given a Critic's Choice, so we thought, to ourselves, 'this'll be a breeze!'
We played as West did every year, to a full house, since directors made their kids watch our shows because our director, Tom Lynch, was so successful. We did the play and from the first moment it was totally perfect. No dropped lines, no missed cues, no stumbles or unheard words. The crowd was laughing and cheering (especially when I got chased around or beaten up, which was like every five minutes). Backstage no one would talk to anyone else because they didn't want to mess it up, they treated it like we were pitchers in the late innings of a perfect game.
We made it through the play, without a hitch. We got a five minute standing ovation, from a crowd that was 90% high schoolers, we struck the set and waited for our critique in the dressing room. The event director came down with our critiquer and told us that we had done a super job and he was very happy with it. And then he said, very queitly, and here's your judge to present your critques and your All-State plaque, which he mumbled and then quickly stepped out the door.
Our whole group was totally aghast. We had turned in the best performance any of us had ever ever been a part of, gotten more cheers than any of us had ever gotten before, and yet we had gotten the 'thanks for showing up' designation from the judges.
The judge, who taught Shakespeare at UW-SP, told us how much she loved it and that she had voted for a Critic's Choice, but that the other two had not. Their critiques were full of praise and none of the three had so much as one negative comment or suggestion for improvement, yet neither of the other two had voted for us to get an award that they could give out to as many plays as they thought were worthy.
The girls started to cry and the guys were swearing and kicking the walls. As a group, we all had been taken from our proudest moment to also-rans. What burned me, and most of us, was that they had passed us over not because of any flaw or lack of worthiness on our part, but for some reason we would never know, as none of them had the guts to put it on our critique. Tom says, and we still talk about it every time the One-Act competition comes up in conversation, that we didn't win one because they had given out so many already by then that the tournament directors had told the judges to stop giving them out or else half the teams would have them.
I was angry about that day for weeks. In fact, it still gets me riled every time I think of it to this very day.
It was from that experience that I developed my coaching attitude that kids need to hear what's wrong with what they do. I relentlessy criticized my forensics students, making sure to encourage them and praise them as much as possible as well. Because there's no worse way to fail than to fail because of a reason you never get to know.

Picked up the second issue of the magazine just now. The cover looks great, I'll show it off at the P tonight.
I need to leave the house again to apply for jobs at Pizza Hut and Family Video.

I'm sure I have more to write about but I'm in the middle of too many things right now.

Thursday, August 1
Let me be the first to tell you that my former employer, Gannett Co., today announced the purchase of the company that we contract to do our printing, Action. Ths is a huge deal because not only is Action a big player in custom printing, they also happen to publish one of the most successful 'shopper' publications in the nation.
So, this could seriously affect the magazine, though it's most likely that we will simply take our printing to Poeschl, RCP or Castle-Pierce. I don't think Gannett even knows that we print the magazine there, so it will be a while before they decide if they'll continue to do so competitively.

Anyway, that's my gossip, and as far as I know they haven't made the announcement public yet, as the sites for the local Gannett papers and Action don't say anything about it yet. Maybe I'll do some conspiracy theory work on the media whining page.