Wednesday, May 30, 2007
Apparently, Captain Chaos and his sidekick made quite the impression because I've been told that there are many, many more pictures out there.
Anyway, I went to greek fest this weekend, which was as usual quite awesome. The sun was shining, the birds were chirping and the smell of ouzo and garlic filled the air. At some point though, I realized that sunscreen was a good idea, and so I went for a quick drive through the neighborhood in search of an open drugstore.
I used to go to UNO, which is not far from the festival, and so I am intimately familiar with the neighborhood. (I apologize to those of my readers that didn't attend UNO with me, because I'm about to go into detail and describe landmarks you aren't familiar with... please bear with me.) On my little quest for sunscreen, My heart sank as I drove past houses that looked like they were on the ass end of an ass beating. For those of you that remember the house where my first apartment in N.O. was, that entire neighborhood looks like it hasn't been touched since Katrina. Overgrown shells of houses that look like they're about to fall over loomed on either side of the Buick as I pulled onto Robert E. Lee. Here it is, almost two years after the storm and there was almost no sign of life on the river side of Leon C. Simon. Blvd.
Still I soldiered on, slowly realizing another way that the neighborhood looks completely different: all the trees are gone. That close to the lake, I'm not really surprised, but when I turned onto elysian fields my heart sank again... the supermarket... blanking on the name... something italian begining with a "C"... regardless... like the song says, ain't there no more. Nothing but a vacant lot where it and the local chineese place once stood. As I pulled into Walgreen's parking lot though, I saw this sight... which brought to the surface all the tears I had been fighting back:
This, boys and girls... is what is left of the Checkmate Lounge.
Again, for those readers unfimiliar with the place, this was the finish line for Kahunahhunt 1, the starting line for Kahunahhunt 2, and the site of many fun, happy nights with my closest friends.
I bought my sunscreen and decided to get my sorry butt to Greek Fest, ignoring the way all these sights made me feel. Plus that, by this point I really needed a good stiff drink handed to me by a pretty woman.
I was a little dissapointed that the live band didn't play for the bulk of the day like they usually do, but hey... I was there in the company of friends, in a shady spot with a cool breeze on my tummy... and the past (for the rest of that afternoon at least), decided to stay there.
The old lady pulled the doctor to the side and said, "Doctor, I haven't had sex for years now and I was wondering how I can increase my husband's sex drive."
The doctor smiled and said, "Have you tried to give him Viagra?"
The lady frowned. "Doctor, I can't even get him to take aspirin when he has a headache," she claimed.
"Well," the doctor continued, "Let me suggest something. Crush the Viagra into a powder. When you are giving him coffee, stir it into the coffee and serve it. He won't notice a thing."
The old lady was delighted. She left the doctor's office quickly.
Weeks later the old lady returned. She was frowning and the doctor asked her what was wrong. She shook her head.
"How did it go?" the doctor asked.
"Terrible, doctor, terrible."
"Did it not work?"
"Yes," the old lady said, "It worked. I did as you said and he got up and ripped his clothes off right then and there and we made mad love on the table. It was the best sex that I'd had in 25 years."
"Then what is the problem, ma'am?"
"Well," she said. "I can't ever show my face in McDonald's again."
Wednesday, May 23, 2007
Two men drove to a gas station for a fill-up because they heard about a contest being offered by the station to patrons who purchase a full tank of gas. When they went inside to pay, the men asked the attendant about the contest.
"If you win, you're entitled to free sex," said the attendant.
"How do we enter?" asked the first man.
"Well, I'm thinking of a number between 1-10, if you guess right, you win free sex."
"O.K. I guess 7, " said the first man.
"Sorry, I was thinking of 8," replied the attendant. "Come back soon and try again"
The next week, the two men returned to the same station to get gas. When they went inside to pay, the second man asked the attendant if the contest was still going on.
"Sure," replied the attendant. "I'm thinking of a number between 1-10, if you guess right. You win free sex."
"2" said the second man
"Sorry, I was thinking of 3," replied the attendant. "Come back soon and try again."
As they walked back to the car, the first man said to the second man,"You know, I'm beginning to think this contest is rigged."
"No way," said the second man. "My wife won twice last week."
Tuesday, May 22, 2007
Boy, that was a particularly grisly thought, wasn't it? I guess that you get a little muddy wading in the stream of consciousness.
Anyway, I was browsing MySpace today, and came across the profile of a woman I met at the con over the weekend. I've been sitting here all morning trying to decide if I should write to her or not. I mean, what would I say? "Hi, I met you over the weekend, found your MySpace by Tuesday, but I swear I'm so not stalking you even though I found you cute and funny..."?
While amusing and full of comedic potential, "creepy fat guy on Internet" really isn't what I want to project to women I meet. Still, my experience is that fortune favors the bold. I guess I'm just torn about writing to someone I hardly know.
Still, that didn't stop me from writing to my cousin last week after finding her e-mail address online...
Yes, I wrote. No, it wasn't real pretty, particularly after she found my blog... But I think we made our peace by the time the exchange was over. This is another thing I'm very torn about... my Dad has chosen (for reasons that are entirely his own and will not be questioned here) not to have a relationship with his family. While I know my decisions are my own in all this, I also know I feel very weird trying to get to know these people that Dad doesn't feel comfortable talking to, family or not. I've made some attempts over the years to keep in touch with that side of the family... but each time it seemed very forced somehow, and never led to a lasting connection. Maybe this is just my guilt at not having really known my Grandmother in the years before she passed away, or maybe it's the slight sting I felt about none of my Dad's family checking in with me after Katrina to see if I was okay. All I know for sure is that this has got to change. My cousin put a thought into my head that has been bugging me since she made the point... if one of us had been making an effort to keep in touch with that side of the family, we would have known what was going on. I tried to get in touch with Grandma after Katrina to let her know I was okay, (figured she would want to know) but failed for one reason or another. Maybe I should have tried harder.
But then again, maybe my overdeveloped sense of guilt is just being a jerk to the rest of my brain. This post is turning out to be way more depressing than I ever meant it to be... so lets try to end it on a high note, about heart disease...
At work today, my boss came out from the kitchen eating an ice cream sandwich. "I shouldn't be eating this" he said, "Eventually, these things will give me a heart attack. You know, I know a guy who died at 41 from a heart attack"
My boss and I are the same age... and I have roughly 200 lbs on the guy, so I laughed at him and said, "You know, when I was 18, people said I would have a heart attack by the time I was 21. When I was 25, the same people told me I wouldn't make it to 30. On my 31st birthday, my ex fussed at me that by eating that second piece of cake, I wouldn't make it to 35. Here I am at 37, and two of my much younger friends have had between them multiple heart attacks, so you'll understand if I view the idea that I won't make it to 40 with a little bit of skepticism. You can't live your life in fear."
"Yeah." my boss said, "It's like listening to the helmet laws for motorcycles anyway. If I want to risk my life, it's my god-given right to do so. I'm just showing that I won't be afraid by eating this." he then finished the ice cream sandwich with a little bit of a flourish. "In fact," he then said, "I'm gonna have another."
"Now wait a minute," I said, "One is making a point, a second is just putting the gun to your head needlessly."
My boss stopped, turned around and said "You know... you're right." and went back into his office. My job done, I then went and ate the last ice cream sandwich.
Hey, someone had to throw themselves on that grenade, right?
Monday, May 21, 2007
There is a saying in Fandom circles... being a fan means never having to say "where would I wear this?". And so this weekend, Mobicon was the perfect place to wear the Captain Chaos outfit I've been working on.
I admit, I had considered not going to Mobicon this year due to having the worst week ever last week... but the hotel room was already reserved, my admission was already paid for, and a whole heap of my friends were going including my masked friend above, better known as Dave. Yes, that is indeed Dave... looking completely different than normal with a porn star style wig and mustache. We walked up to several people we knew throughout the night, and few recognized him until I gave up our secret identities.
Apparently, Dave makes for a very convincing migrant worker... and I need to work on the whole "secret" part of the secret identity thing. It seems that when surrounded by women like in the picture to my right, it apparently doesn't take long to get me to give up my name, address phone number, blood type, voter registration number and credit card information. I am proud though, that not once did I take off the mask that night. (the photo was from the night before when I was much, much drunker) On the bright side, Being Captain Chaos acted as an automatic filter for screening out women that were way to young for me to be messing with. If they didn't recognize me... probably too young. I did however notice that a number of the younger women thought Dave and I were supposed to be a pair of mexican wrestlers.
And lo, the generational gap gets wider.
In any event it was a fun weekend. Among the more notible highlights...
1) Taking a voice over seminar with Dave and laughing hysterically at how much he sounded like the old child molester character from 'Family Guy' when reading his copy.
2) Made a few contacts that may lead to me doing more paranormal investigations in alabama.
3) The following exchange between me and a pretty woman:
Me: My name is Rob... as in the verb 'to steal'
Her: As in to steal my heart?
Me: I am so using that line from now on.
4) Dave doing a pratfall every time I introduced him as Catastrophe Boy. Most people just thought he was drunk.
5) The quieter room parties suddenly filling up within mere moments of Captain Chaos entering the room. I know that where I am, that's where the party is... but to see it confirmed was astounding. By the end of the night, we were greeted more than once by "It's Captain Chaos, and he's come to save our party!"
6) About halfway through the night, me having to explain why I saved the dog at the end of the Cannonball Run instead of winning the race. Then being backed up by a fanboy who thought that was the right decision.
7) Getting shot down by women that were way out of my league not once, not twice, but thrice.
8) Being admonished by a friend for not being in the right place at the right time to stop some loser from making off with an entire tray of jello shots from a room party. (Where was Captain Chaos when we needed HIM? HE could have stopped this guy!)
9) Me blaming it on Catastrophe Boy when he was out of earshot.
Wednesday, May 16, 2007
No, that doesn't mean making "Groonk, Groonk" noises at each other in an attempt to capture Godzilla's inner pathos.
You know, I know my Dad's a big nerd just like his eldest son, but it always surprises me when he out-geeks me. I called him from in fromt of my friend Leah's house, who lives only a few blocks from the local fire station. Apparently, at 6pm, they test their air raid/tornado warning siren. It was really loud, and I joked with Dad that it sounded like they were calling the Morlocks. this, I figured was a rather clever joke referencing the classic George Pal movie, The Time Machine. Dad chuckled but didn't laugh.... instead he got all Fanboy on me and said, "Excuse me? don't you mean 'calling the Eloi'?" He was of course correct, but only 5% of the freakin population would have not only noticed the difference, but to called me on it.
Old geeks never die. They just win more trivia contests.
Tuesday, May 15, 2007
First, I considered driving the 1500 or so miles to leave a bag of flaming dog poop on my uncle's front porch, but dismissed that as a touch juvenile. Well, that and I realized that if I really wanted to do that, I have agents in place that can do it for me without having to drive further than across the room to my cell phone. Agents who I can disavow knowledge of should the need arise. (best kind of agents... heh heh heh)
Then I calmed down slightly and called The coolest girl in the world, (yes, I am cool enough that I have the coolest girl in the world's phone number... but it ain't like that, so don't playa hate, y'all.) Who suggested mailing the offending parties a dead squirrel or two via third class mail. This was a great idea, (she is the coolest girl in the world, after all) but I get ill to my stomach just disposing of a mouse trap, much less while mailing a dead furry mammal.
During our conversation, she said something that has been ringing around my brain ever since.... "Perhaps it's time to enact some of the more elaborate revenge schemes you've come up with over the years, Rob."
I'm not a vengeful sort, folks... but I do believe that the universe has its own way of keeping itself just. If that includes, say, an anonymous tip to the authorities saying that you saw a number of dead hookers in the trunk of your next-door neighbor's brand new car that he insists on parking in your parking space every day, well then that was what the universe needed to balance itself.
In the spirit of such, I have often been called upon as a consultant in the fine art of getting even over the years. Many of my best laid plans have never come to fruition, as it's been my experience that a lot of time the vengeful person feels better by only to planning the vengeance... not the actually going through with it.
Completely dismantling an a**holes car and leaving the pieces around the city, then leaving him a map with the location of the parts is a lot more fun to plan than do. The thought of walling up all the entrances to the school newspaper with bricks and mortar because they published an unflattering picture is worth a laugh or two, but is really difficult to do without getting caught. Scaring the bejeusus out of a teacher that gets on your case for not doing your homework with what amounts to a big toy ray gun would be cool... but might also be good for a talk with the department of homeland security.
It's really very simple, folks... Imagination + Dark Humor= Great vengeance schemes + catharsis.
Anyway... as a result, many of my more elaborate schemes have sat on the shelf for many years. Some I admit to being impractical, like turning someone's prized in ground pool into a large vat of jello is really difficult if you don't have acess to the property, or a way to cool the jello down to gelling temperature.
Some are simply not financially viable, like sending as many animal performers and spacewalks to a bachelor's home, (with the understanding that to be paid, they must stay at this location) at various times throughout the day under the guise of a fictitious children's party being held there.
He, he, he. I defy anyone not to go ballistic by the time the llamas get there.
So, maybe I'll just content myself that I could come up with a daring and appropriate revenge scheme for now. After all, there is a slim chance that I will eventually run into these people at some god-awful family event, so I probably shouldn't do anything. Maybe I'll just leave it to Dad to mete out whatever retribution he feels appropriate. In fact, I'm gonna call him tonight to let him know I've got his back... maybe he'll feel better if we plan us some "revenge we'll never go through with" too.
Plus that, when I think about it... I doubt Grandma would have approved of me sending one of those big exterminators tents to my uncle's houses while they're all at work...
Monday, May 14, 2007
As many of you know, I was having a rough week last week. Flat tires, bad luck, feeling just generally down… and I was looking forward to the weekend in an “at least it will be over then” kind of way. Heh… Little did I know what drama the weekend would send hurtling in my direction. I swear, I’m starting to feel a little like Karma’s chew toy. I’ve been sitting at my computer for a few hours trying to think of a good way to sum up all the thoughts storming through my brain about the events that have hit my life, and I totally need to write about it.
Part of me wonders if I should even post this, as it goes into a bit more detail about me and mine than I am generally comfortable posting here…
I think it all boils down to three conversations… two that were kinda (censored) up, and the other that was really, really (censored) up. Here they are (in snippets) for those of you that want the dish on the real messed stuff that’s bothering me, go ahead and skip to the third conversation…
First came the kinda, in a phone conversation from Charity’s best friend, “Biscuit”
Biscuit: Hey, Rob… I wanted to let you know that Charity’s in the Hospital again.
Me: I wish I could say I’m surprised. What happened?
B: Well, you know how she moved in with her boyfriend, right?
Me: The one with the self-esteem issues, yeah.
B: well, apparently she stopped taking her medication.
Me: Quelle Surprise. So, what did she do?
B: She threw a bucket at him.
Me: A bucket of what?
B: I don’t know… but he called me to ask what he should do.
Me: So you told him to learn to duck, right?
B: (not reacting to the joke) No. I told him I didn’t know. He called 911 and had the police take her to the hospital.
Next came when I made the obligatory phone call to Charity’s mom.
Charity’s mom: So, you heard.
Me: Yeah, Biscuit told me.
CM: How the heck did she know?
Me: Charity’s new man told her.
CM: Her, but not me until the hospital realized they had no place to put her.
Me: Uh… what?
CM: I only found out last night. The folks at the hospital say that there are no beds anywhere in south
CM: There’s a mental health crisis going on here, Rob! They have no where to put her, and have been keeping her in the emergency room for the past three days!
The last one had thankfully, nothing to do with Charity, but was the single most F’ed up phone call I believe I have ever gotten. I’ll let y’all decide for yourselves. It was on Mother’s day, when my Brother called me for what I thought was his usual “don’t forget to call mom” call. (I never forget to call, but Jay always calls anyway… such is the nature of my relationship with my brother)
Jay: Hi, Rob…
Me: Relax. I’m gonna call her. How’s your play going? Were the reviews good? How was…
J: Robbie, shut up for a second.
Me: what’s wrong?
J: Grandma Cerio passed away.
Me: Oh, man. When’s the funeral?
J: It was on
Me: WHAT? Why didn’t Dad call me to tell me? I would have come up, or at the least sent flowers!
J: Robbie, he didn’t know.
J: Mom found out today, from Aunt Vita (Mom’s godmother) who saw the Obituary and asked her about it. Mom was pissed she hadn’t been told like you were just now. So she calls Dad, only to find out that he didn’t know. None of his brothers thought to call him and tell him.
Me: Jay, that is the single most (Censored) up thing I’ve ever heard.
J: Tell me about it.
Me: Those (censored, censored, censoredy-censored) pieces of (censored censored) monkey (censored)! Didn’t they think he’d want to (censored) know his mother died? What the (censored) is wrong with those (censored) people!?!
J: You’re preaching to the choir.
Me: I know…Jay, just promise me one thing…
Me: No matter what happens between us in the future, if one of our parents dies, you’ll TELL ME!
J: Agreed. We’re not them, bro…we’re not them. Call Dad when you have a minute.
I did call Dad later… not really knowing what to say. I’m not used to hearing that much pain in his voice, but I offered to be there if he needed to talk about it, and to call and curse out certain select members of his family any time he asks. What else could I say? What else can I do?
It was a truly F’ed up weekend.
Wednesday, May 09, 2007
This morning, I walked out of my house to go to work and find I had a flat tire. I go to fix the tire with the can of fix-a-flat I keep in the trunk for just such an emergency, and the top of the can ruptures, spraying liquid latex over me, the car, the house, and half a block of sidewalk. I borrowed a can of the stuff from a neighbor that heard me cursing extremely loudly, filled the tire, and then drove into nothing but traffic from my house to the door of the factory.
Being that Karma has decided to make me it's bitch, I'm thinking I must have done something really horrible while sleepwalking, cause damned if I can think of anything I did while conscious to deserve the week I'm having.
Anyway, It was a slower day at work today, so I found myself browsing a site filled with Facts about Chuck Norris. Dave has a t-shirt with a number of these on them, but there were a full eight pages of ones I'd never heard of before. I laughed myself silly for twenty minutes.
Among my favorites:
Time waits for no man. Unless that man is Chuck Norris.
Fool me once, shame on you. Fool Chuck Norris once and he will roundhouse you in the face.
Chuck Norris originally appeared in the "Street Fighter II" video game, but was removed by Beta Testers because every button caused him to do a roundhouse kick. When asked bout this "glitch," Norris replied, "That's no glitch."
If you spell Chuck Norris in Scrabble, you win. Forever.
There is no theory of evolution, just a list of creatures Chuck Norris allows to live.
That's not Chuck Norris doing push-ups -- that's Chuck Norris moving the Earth away from the path of a deadly asteroid.
The quickest way to a man's heart is with Chuck Norris' fist.
Crop circles are Chuck Norris' way of telling the world that sometimes corn needs to lie down.
Chuck Norris is the reason why Waldo is hiding.
The chief export of Chuck Norris is Pain.
Chuck Norris ordered a Big Mac at Burger King, and got one.
Chuck Norris doesn't bowl strikes, he just knocks down one pin and the other nine faint.
Some people wear Superman pajamas. Superman wears Chuck Norris pajamas.
Chuck Norris does not own a stove, oven, or microwave , because revenge is a dish best served cold.
Chuck Norris can set ants on fire with a magnifying glass. At night.
If at first you don't succeed, you're not Chuck Norris.
Most boots are made for walkin'. Chuck Norris' boots ain't that merciful.
It is believed dinosaurs are extinct due to a giant meteor. That's true if you want to call Chuck Norris a giant meteor.
Hope y'all have brightened your day:)
Tuesday, May 08, 2007
I don’t handle being annoyed real well, folks. Tends ta make me grumpy. The grumpiness in turn, gives me a strange sort of detachment that prompts me to use phrases like “not if there were exploding flying monkeys involved”.
On top of this weird lag in my brain, I found today that I really need to check my Yahoo! Accounts more often. I don’t log in much anymore primarily because I don’t surf the web at home any more, and I don’t like to abuse my privileges by chatting at work. But my friend Steph was having a rough day yesterday, and asked that I log onto Yahoo messenger to chat if I could find the time.
Despite my three second lag, I did find the time… three seconds too late though, cause she wasn’t there.
The thing is, there were a bunch of offline messages waiting for me when I logged on. Normally I would delete them, as I’m not particularly interested in checking out nude pics of various women in compromising pictures or what they did this week with their sorority sisters. Okay, maybe I am a little interested… but I am also at work, folks; If I think chatting at work is abuse, well then porn on the company dime is a definite no-no.
Anyway, normally I would delete them, but I noticed a few mixed in there from people I knew, so I read them this time.
Apparently, about three months or so ago I got some fan mail about my blog over Yahoo from a 30ish woman that lives in
I’m in a bad mood as it is, and then I get said message THREE months later. From a woman who thinks me funny and charming and lives 20 minutes away. Not fair. SO not fair.
So, do I write back to her anyway?
Monday, May 07, 2007
Writers everywhere may now take their heads out of the noose.
What do you remember about your first day of school?
Well, let’s see… 33 years or so ago, I was 4 years old, and entering Pre-K. (jeeze… there are countries in eastern Europe that didn’t last for 33 years.) I’m continually amazed that my photographic memory actually works back that far, but what I remember most was standing in line in a big blue hallway behind a cute little brunette girl while my Mom argued with some blonde haired lady about something I simply had no interest in. I remember the little girl turning around and smiling at me, and I remember her eyes were a deep shade of brown.
Have you ever attended a high school or college reunion? What was it like?
I tend to avoid reunions because the people I would want to talk to at them I’ve kept in touch with anyway. Plus that, when your high school graduating class consists of internet moguls and Nobel Prize nominees, you feel like a bit of a loser with a sales job that barely pays the rent.
Do you keep in regular contact with anyone from high school and/or college?
Yes, I do. I talk to or see almost all my close friends from college at least once a month, and have a friend from high school I call about once every two months. It’s a little strange, but I actually re-connected with a lot of folks from my high school/teenage years after Hurricane Katrina. (Most contacted me because they were worried I may have drowned or something.)
From Curious as a Cat:
If you had to explain the concept of religion to someone from another planet, how would you do it?
In science, we are taught to ask “why?” until everything is explained… drilling down into the core of the origin of everything. When you get to the point in your questions where science no longer can provide the answers, religion and faith take over.
Which one of your senses do you use the most? The least?
I use my vision the most I suppose I look at everything from the moment I wake up to the moment I go to sleep. For the least, it’s probably (sadly) my sense of touch.
What event from your teen years would you like to relive just as it happened?
My fondest memories of my teen years are of hanging out after school in lower
Friday, May 04, 2007
*for those of you that don't get this joke... My buddy Drew had a habit in college of solving the annoying habits of his roommate, Ringo with duct tape. Charity and I walked in after one such incident to find Ringo taped quite skillfully to a large floor lamp. Charity said to me "Why is taped to a lamp? Should we help him?" to which I replied "No. He probably deserved it."
Edited to add: I'm reasonably sure Drew would never do this to Ace. Well, at least not until he's a little older anyway...
Wednesday, May 02, 2007
Ya see, I have had some time to think lately... (a side effect of my lack of a social life) and I've decided that my life needs an overhaul. Don't get me wrong... I'm genuinely thankful for all that I've been blessed with... but it occurs to me that my life isn't really the one that I want. Inside me, there is a half-crazy (well, some would say all-crazy) bohemian gypsy that longs to express himself. Society has pushed on me the idea that happiness lies in stability, safety, and family... but that isn't me, and I doubt it ever will be.
When I was with my wife, I never really felt whole. Char made me very, very happy (before her illness), but there was always part of me that felt... chained... by the whole prospect of settling down. I would routinely ignore the part of me screaming leave it all behind, buy a Harley, and spend my life exploring this wonderous planet we all share.
I'm not saying I'm gonna pack it up and wander through the west like Kane from Kung-fu, but as I start staring down the barrel of 40, I realize that the Crazed Gypsy inside me needs some time in the sun. My soul demands it!
And who am I to argue with my soul?
So, I've identified a few things that I feel that this other half of me needs... one is to travel more, which is one of the reasons that I've said that all the trades for 'Trading up' will be made in person. Another is that like all good bohemians, I feel the need to express myself through music, so I will learn to play a musical instrument if it freaking kills me. There are a few others, but it's all about the baby steps, people.