Wednesday, July 14, 2004

Latest/Greatest of Craigslist

Why We All Drink

Upon stepping into the office this morning, I had two different people remind me what day it is. “It’s Friday” they spouted, as if they had just unveiled some hidden truth about life……no shit it’s Friday, believe it or not I have a vague understanding of the passing of time, and keep myself moderately aware of what day in the week it is. But thanks anyway, lest I forgot and had the horrible misfortune of thinking it was Thursday. Could you imagine? The horror.

So what does Friday really mean? Why do people feel the need to tell you what day it is? I don’t recall many occasions where an excited employee nudged me w/ a pointy elbow to remind that it was, in fact, Tuesday. “Dude, it’s Tuesday, sweet.” Well, the reason is most of us hate our jobs, and Friday is our welcome respite from the soul shitting grind that is the working week. And what do most of us do on a Friday night? Drink. Self-medicate. Salute ourselves for another listless week by flooding our central nervous system with what is essentially poison. Before you think me some finger pointing parade rainer, please know that I love, love the poison.

So we drink, letting our horrid memories of pointless meetings, inane office banter, the sound of the printer spitting out the dead carcasses of our beloved, oxygen giving trees just so everyone in the office can read yet another idiotic memo from the CEO reminding us all of the importance of “hammering the phones” (this ass-clown refuses, refuses to email the memos, declaring that it’s much more “personal” when it’s tangible, in your hand, and you’re reading it. Note to cock-smoke, no one reads them anyway, you’d have a better shot at getting us to look at a feces-smeared scrap of notebook paper and sticking that on our desks, you raging, insufferable, overpaid mental midget.) By the way, why couldn’t someone have told me that the phone would be such a huge part of corporate life? I don’t remember hearing in college “by the way, 89% of you will make a living by incessantly calling uninterested parties via the telephone and trying like holy hell to get them to purchase something you yourself don’t even understand or believe in, enjoy, you’re doing yeoman work!” So, we drink, we drink to wash it all away, to silence the demons that fester in our skulls Monday through Friday, that feed off our collective apathy as we whither away in front of the true idiot box (the computer has officially taken over the T.V as the single most contributing factor in the decline of modern civilization, causing at the very least eye damage, and the worst, total and complete mental breakdowns. If Google’s pop-up blocker didn’t come around, I’d be serving 25 to life right now for some sort of reprehensible crime). So we drink, we drink to forget and to forgive. To forget the past 5 days, and forgive ourselves for what we’re about to do in the next two. To forgive ourselves for not becoming what we always dreamed. To forgive ourselves the rampant complacency that has taken a hold of us as we watch our lives slip away, one company-wide email at a time.

So we drink. Like rabbits fuck, we drink, from close of business to close of bar, we imbibe enough alcohol in one sitting in the vein, fruitless attempt to carve out just a smidgen of fun in an this suddenly barren, bleak, pale existence we call our lives.

Okay, I think I’m getting a bit too depressing. It’s Friday after all, as I was just reminded by Kelly, our sales engineer, as I was typing this. Actually, I should be clearer, she said, “Hey hun, T.G.I.F, right?” I should have replied “L.O.L Kelly, hopefully we both get a little T.L.C tonight, oh, B.T.W, fuck off.”

Kelly’s a nice girl; I should take this out on her.

So we drink. Like Republicans lie or Democrats waiver, we drink; we drink more than Market Street smells. We drink more than the Muni line 30, 41, and 45 through Chinatown blows. We drink more than Ted Kennedy’s third liver could ever hope to possibly expunge. We drink because we can. We drink because we must.

Now of course, there are some of you out there who like their jobs. A few who dare use the word “love.” But you’re not reading this, b/c you’re busy doing what you enjoy, not scouring CL for something or someone to buy/sell/trade/dump/fuck/rant/rave/find/steal/lie to/lie about/and all other things Craig.

We drink because Katie, our manager, is so insecure she actually makes breathing awkward.

We drink because Bruce, the VP of being a incredible ass-face (and Biz-Dev) insists upon wearing enough cologne to the point where lighting a match anywhere near him is potentially life threatening.

We drink because Michael, the homophobic advertising guy, gets all red in the face if you call him “Mike.” So of course, we call him Mike often, cutting off the “e” at the end to emphasize the point that we’re really, really enjoying it.

We drink because if we have to endure one more Friday afternoon meeting, we might just projectile vomit in Kevin’s glandular, gnome like face. Just because you don’t have a life doesn’t mean the rest of us want to sit down at 4:45 on a Friday to discuss the company’s direction for Q3. You see Jeff’s left eye twitching? I’d give this meeting another 3 minutes before he reaches across the table and pulls one of your ears off, Kev. The man’s in a custody battle for his children and you’re taking time away from his weekend with them because you’re a selfish, horrible man. And if Kevin does blow, you can bet your ass Mitch, the North West sales manager will. I swear that guy starts off cooking some chicken by biting their fucking heads off. Do you hear his unending finger tapping on the faux-marble table? Notice how the pace quickens every few minutes? Well Kev, you’ve got a few more seconds of being a bullshit blowhard until Mitch pulls your heart of your fucking chest.

We drink because there’s no such thing as a good week of work.

We drink because if Jessica doesn’t say, “this is a mission critical decision” at least 4 times a week, it means she was out sick three days. Jessica, it’s an office supply order for Staples, how in HOLY HELL is that mission critical? Do you even know what mission critical means? Do you? You’re the office manager, not the board chairman, the phrase “mission critical” should never, EVER come out of your mouth. It’s a stapler, not a funding request, chill the fuck out.

We drink because there is no such thing as a uni-sex bathroom. It’s a girl’s bathroom people. You wonder why us guys leave the office at least twice to three times a day, not including lunch? It’s because we have to shit, and we can’t very well shit in that veritable Globe Theatre of a restroom, where every sound is amplified ten fold. The one time I just had to go (note to Jessica, now that was a mission critical decision) and simply couldn’t make it to the hotel across the street (those people must have caught on that I’m not staying there, considering they see me every fucking day) I took a shit in the uni-sex bathroom, and what ensued was an anal-philharmonic, led by yours truly, in which the entire office was privy to every fart, grunt, and bowel-related sound effect I had to offer. I felt like taking a bow when I got out, possibly chugging some coffee and going in for an encore. So no, it’s not uni-sex, it’s a girl’s room. You might as well stick a huge tampon on the door with a note reading “No Y Chromosomes allowed.” Oh, and Regina…I salute your utter shamelessness when it comes to shitting. I’ve never, ever seen a women carry the paper under arm when she walks into the bathroom. Bra-fucking-O my girl. Truly, classic stuff.

We drink because we know Ted’s gay, the whole office knows Ted’s gay, Ted’s friends and family know Ted’s gay, and we’re pretty sure at this point Ted must be vaguely aware he’s gay, yet he still insists upon talking about all the “hot ass” he “tags” over the weekend. Note to Ted, it’s not working amigo, when you can recite more show tunes than Nancy, who worked on Broadway in Manhattan for 4 years, well, it’s time to take the jaws of life to that closet door and step out into the world the way you were intended. Thing is Ted, everyone likes you, you’re good people, and coming out won’t change that, it will simply save us from the intensely awkward experience of suffering through one of your bullshit “she was so hot and then we did this and that” stories. How come we never see this girls Ted? How come they never call, never email, and what’s that stain on your shirt? It doesn’t look like mayo.

We drink because we all know that “lunch and learn” really means “this will be the worst lunch you’ll have all week” as we’re forced to share low-rent burrito’s at Chevy’s and listen to some hired-gun of a sales guy tell us all how we have to “want it” more than the other guy. Hey Chet, this is software sales, not rugby, now fuck off.

We drink because Amanda in finance is hot, and Tom in HR thinks he’s going to bang her, and as God in heaven is my witness, if he does I will completely shut down and cry myself to sleep, because Tom in HR is quite possibly a larger d-bag than Kevin, and should he bed Amanda, well, then..nothing is right in the world. We drink because we’re afraid that might happen, and we drink because we’re too afraid to talk to Amanda, save for the pathetic “warm today” comment we threw at her on Tuesday. No shit it’s warm today, she too must come from outside like the rest of us, it’s not as if she wakes up, showers, than steps in her transporter and beams herself to work. She goes outside too, you fuck. And by you, I mean me.

We drink because we’re almost positive Brett and Stu are get stoned at lunch, and we’re pissed they haven’t invited us along yet.

We drink because the last time someone said something funny at work it was completely unintentional, and it revolved around a Freudian slip when Kev, at the end of one of his marathon Friday meetings, was trying to answer Mitch’s constant interjections over our marketing budget but also trying to keep Brian quiet and ended up trying to speak to them both at the same time, calling Mitch “Bitch”. Hilarious. The fact that Kev survived that meeting is a testament to the fact that he’s like a cockroach, and could survive anything. A nuclear holocaust ensues, we’re all dead…and there will be Kevin, holding court in a Friday afternoon meeting with three charred corpses and half a human head, wondering aloud “where everybody is?”

We drink because calling our work weekend in Reno a “retreat” is an oxymoron. It’s not a retreat, it’s an assault, an assault on everything we hold dear…how DARE you ask me to give up a weekend to go to a conference w/ the whole company in Reno. I’d rather eat Kevin’s shit. Okay, that’s a little too far. I’d rather throw shit at Kevin. Actually, come to think about, throwing shit at Kevin would be kinda high on my list of things to do over a weekend.

We drink because Shelly has now tried to arrange four different happy hour get togethers and the only one who shows up is Kelly and Mitch, and the only reason Mitch shows up is because he’s a drunk. We drink at some other bar, out of sadness for Shelly. And Mitch.

We drink because the thought of Monday is enough to make us cry.

And finally, we drink because in the end, when it’s all said and done, we have much to celebrate. We are lucky enough to have the luxury of bitching about corporate jobs and cubes and the bullshit office when you consider the state of affairs for most of this planet’s inhabitants, every day a true struggle, food and a roof over their heads never a certainty, but rather something they strive for. We drink because in the end, we’re lucky, spoiled, pampered brats, we know it.

We drink because we can.

We drink because we have to.


To the bitch in line at Farenheit 9/11 last night...

I feel like venting...taking out a little wrath on a little person right now, so here goes:

Last night, after a very pleasant day spent with my girlfriend, we decided to go to a bar. After several drinks, the topic of our conversation turned to all of the hype surrounding Farenheit 9/11 and we decided that we would go see it. So, we walked down Pacific avenue in Santa Cruz to the Del Mar theater, and bought our tickets. Seeing that the line for the first showing was extremely long, we decided it would be best if we waited the remaining 45 minutes until our showing within the warm confines of another bar. So we drink our margaritas and get even more intoxicated in preparation for what we figured would be a heated and scathing portrayal of our fine leaders in Washington. Upon finishing our drinks, we returned to the line, only to find that it had grown to be a block and a half long. Since we already had our tickets, and didn't really mind what seatrs we got, we headed to the back of this long line to patiently wait our turns to see the movie.

That's when SHE appeared.

Let me begin by saying that this woman was what I refer to as a "yippie." You see, Santa Cruz is full of people who were "there" in the sixties, and thought that being a free-spirited hippy was the proverbial bee's knees. Then the 80's happened, and they sold out all of their values, and bought into the establishment. Not that there's anything wrong with that. What's wrong, is that now that we're in the new millenium, they have decided that they miss all of the free spirit of the 60's, and that they want it back, but are also unwilling to relinquish their cellphones, SUV's, beach-front condos and Starbuck's mocha-soy-latte-frappuchino-whateverthefucks in the spirit of all that is "groovy." So instead, they buy expensive leather jackets, become buddhists, extol the virtues of a vegetarian diet, and last, but not least, they PREACH BULLSHIT TO UNSUSPECTING PASSERSBY AND WHEN CONFRONTED WITH INDIFFERENCE RESORT TO BEING PISSY AND QUOTING THE MUNICIPAL CODE!!

Fucking bitch. Where was I? Oh yes, in line...

So you see, my girlfriend and I are standing there in line, and seeing as how we were several drinks back, we naturally thought that a cigarette would be prudent. The fact that we were standing in front of a deserted construction site a block and a half away from the theater only encouraged us in this decision, considering we were in a place where we wouldn't bother anyone. Or so we thought.

But then, in mid-drag, as the glorious nicotene-laced fumes escaped from my smiling jowls, this yippie bitch gets in line behind me and does not even wait one second to declare that "you need to put out your cigarettes right now because there's a law that says you can't smoke in theater lines and I think its disgusting." "What's that?" I say. "You heard me," was her snivelling reply.

Now allow me to digress in the interest of preserving my own good character, as well as that of my lovely lady companion. You see, my girlfriend and I may be smokers, but we do not wish to inflict discomfort among the masses as a result of our habits. I agree--smoking is disgusting. It smells like shit, it makes you cough up shit that looks like leftovers from the set of "ghostbusters" and it makes people die.

However, if I am offending you with my second-hand smoke, it isbest to politely say, "Excuse me, but I really don't like cigarettes, so would you mind either putting it out or moving a little further away from me while you finish it?" In this case, I would surely respond, "why yes, I am terribly sorry for offending you,and I would be more than happy to accomodate your polite request." And I would. Gladly.

However, this bitch just couldn't get off of her self-righteous horse long enough to treat me or my girlfriend like human beings. Instead, in her fuzzy little brain she simple percieved us as "smokers," or "those social outcasts who need to be taught a lesson in healthy living, post haste."

Upon hearing this very demeaning recitation of the municipal code from the yippie bitch, I replied in my most respectful manner, "I'm sorry, but this is a public sidewalk, there are no 'no smoking' signs, and besides, you're being rude. So we're going to finish our cigarettes and we'll be done in just a second."
This did not go over too well. Within seconds I was being accosted by such remarks as "you asshole! Your smoke is offensive and its illegal and you HAVE to put out your cigarette, because I say so! Its my right!"

At this point, my fellow readers, I was starting to lose my buzz because of this bitch, and that simply would not do. So I responded by blowing my smoke at her and telling her in so many words to "stick it up your yuppie ass you stupid cunt."
This rapidly devolved into a tirade of swearing, threats and further recitation of the municipal code. To which I responded by lighting up another cigarette (when I get angry, I really want to smoke). This didn't go over too well either. As she began her next tirade about the rights of the people, her wimpy, balding, birkenstock-and-sock-wearing limp-dicked husband came up and said, "what's going on here?" Belive me, his bitch of a wife was more than happy to fill him in on the details. After ascertaining the situation, and probably realising that its not a good idea to get in the way of a pissed off drunk guy and his cigarette, he stated so boldy, "well, we're just not going to talk to you anymore!"

Precious moments like these come few and far between, my friends. You must embrace them when they are present. It had been quite some time since the last argument I had resulted in one party saying "I'm not going to be your friend anymore." I felt like I was at recess all over again.

However, he seemed to be the only member of her party who was thinking rationally, so I accepted his proposal in kind and said, "your wife should have done that in the first place." She clamped up. I thought it was over.

I was wrong.

You see, even though the yippie bitch had succeeded in lowering my buzz, I was still amply intoxicated, which in turn makes me chain smoke. This time I attempted to be extra polite about it, and asked the people in front of me if they minded my smoking. They said no, but if it was weed and I wasn't sharing then they had a serious problem. I felt that this was enough of a go-ahead, so I lit up yet another cigarette.

Before the toxic gas even passed my lips, I could hear the shrill voice of my yippie antagonist say, "ohmygod! You asshole! I just told you to put out your cigarette and you lit ANOTHER one! You're breaking the law!" Please bear in mind, dear reader, that at this point she had slinked back several spaces in line to hide behind her oh-so-intimidating waif of a husband, and that my smoke was actually travelling in the exact OPPOSITE direction from where she was standing. At this point, the alcohol got the best of me.

"You self-righteous piece of shit! How dare you talk to me like I'm some form of criminal or dumb animal. Fuck you, bitch! If you don't like it, then fucking leave, because I'm not going anywhere and I'm going to smoke until the second that I enter that fucking theater! So shut the fuck up and write your local congressman about it because I don't like you or care what your small little mind has to offer! So go fuck yourself and your high horse! Fucking yippies!"

This was perhaps the most useful tactic I could have employed at that moment, because she already decided that she was right and that the law was on her side. So she proudly proclaims, "I'm going to go find a police officer and have him come give you a ticket!"

My girlfriend (god, I love her) and I responded in unison: "Please do, and get the fuck away from us!"

As the woman scuttled down the street, we and the other nice people in line began laughing. I looked back at her pasty faced husband with a scowl that simply said, "one word out of you, and I'll grab you by your shitty goatee and sweep the street with your shiny little head." He looked scared.

Of course, she was unable to locate a cop before I went into the theater (and enjoyed yet another cigarette). A cop wouldn't have done anything anyway, because I would have put out my cigarette before he saw me. I watched the yippie bitch come in while the movie had already started, and weasel her way into a rather shitty seat at the side of the theater. Karmic revenge, I thought.

So, I guess the moral of this story, is that if you're going to go see a scathing liberal movie that's full of trumped up ideas that support the writer's own beliefs, you can sure as hell expect the audience to act the same way. I did like the movie, but I definitely took it with a grain of salt. All I could think, was that here we are in line, about to see a movie about exercizing your personal rights and freedoms, and not letting the government dictate how you should live your life, and this stupid yippie bitch is quoting the fucking municipal code instead of just asking me nicely to put out my cigarette.

I hope her cellphone gives her cancer.


405 Loogies

I'm a patient man. If I find myself behind two Inject-O-Tanned Bellevue debutantes rattling off their multi-syllabic macchiato preferences to a heavy-lidded Tully's barista for more than the 3.7 seconds it takes the rest of humanity, I'm cool.

I'm an educated man, achieved through college loans, real-life application, and a cosmically ill-conceived stint in the US Navy. I remember *some* calculus, can calculate my taxes, embrace the printed word, and was first exposed to the concept of alternative lifestyles when walking through the door of an Olongapo City brothel and being met with the heady sight of a donkey in a compromising position.

Royal Tenenbaum would agree - I'm true blue. My friends are family, my family are friends, and I do believe in terms like 'never' or 'always'. Sometimes.

However, I am cursed. Cursed with a daily 75-minute 1-way commute. I live in the Auburn/Edgewood/Milton Bermuda Triangle. I work in Bothell - Land of the Neo-Hick Office Park. 75 minutes, man. 75 minutes of Howard Stern on the radio, 75 minutes of the Kennydale-to-Newport parking lot, and 75 minutes of witnessing acts of Jetta-wielding mental retardation (tired term, I realize, but oh-so-applicable).

Without fail, for 5 days a week, I am subjected to acts of idiocy. I am tailgated by overweight women intent on forcing that Egg McMuffin into their digestive tract while simultaneously changing the bristle head on their Sonicare. I see the obligatory 10-15 HOV lane violators breezing past. I see the kid in the lowered 1981 Honda Civic changing lanes like he's sidestepping turds in a shit-tossing contest (Enumclaw Street Faire annual occurrence). With all of this, I'm cool. It's expected, it's part of our NW culture, and while we all hate it, it simply 'is'.

What I cannot fucking deal with... perdone me francais... is the pencil-necked dickslap in the androgynous late-90s Camry, who, to my unending ire and discontent, cranes his neck from port to starboard (my apologies - Naval terminology dies hard), ceaselessly 'checking out' each passing motorist, while allowing the vehicle ahead of to proceed at least a 1/4 mile into my future.

Now, for the dunderheads who will vehemently insist that I'm only getting to work perhaps 5 minutes later than I would have sans the thumbdick in front of me, I understand this. I accept this. What I refuse to accept is this brazen disregard for other motorists, this complete ignorance of others within a 30 foot radius.

Look, fuckstick. You're never going to score chicks on 405. You're not going to find your soul mate in the slow lane. The redhead in the Honda you just gaped at has not retained your face nor car in her short-term memory. All you're doing is showcasing your pathetic existence. Seeing you earnestly searching for love in passing vehicles never elicited pity - I only feel what borders on hatred. I'd be a shitty Jedi in Yoda's book.

So, long story short, I've adopted a new approach to this breed of human that unfortunately lives in my congressional district.

I hock a loogie. On his car.

Generally, I aim for a side window. More often than not, I'll bide my time, sidling along the passenger side of the offending vehicle. I may take an extra swig of my coffee, to ensure viscosity, color, and substance. Woe to the offender that dares rubberneck on a morning when I've filled my commuter mug with OJ.

I slow to pacing the offending vehicle. I never honk to gain attention until after the shot. I lower my window. I inhale deeply, hocker-style. My head flies back, a paroxysm of latent energy. Primed, I expel the loogie. Sometimes it hits dead-square on the window. Other times it arcs, a milky globule, hued only by my beverage choice, gracefully onto the winshield - granted, a strong headwind prevents this brand of money shot.

I've achieved some fine splatter patterns. Some simply cling to the window like a dollop of Miracle Whip. Others spider out into intriguing chaos-mathematic-inspired designs.

Fact is, you now have my oral ejaculation on your car. I am on your car. I now possess the spririt of your Camry. I am right, you are wrong, justice has been served. You will complete your commute with my mucus, dried to a hoary crust. Others may, at a glance, presume a bird consumed with dysentery has left its supper on your car. But you know the truth.

You have purchased a 405 Loogie.


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