Grosse Pointe Blank

I watched Grosse Pointe Blank last night. Got me thinking. My ten year reunion was awesome. I haven't heard many people say that about their ten year reunion. No preconcieved judgement. No grudges. None of that. It was just a laid back good time.

And it leads to acquantances that I never thought I'd have. Things down the road that I can trace back to it. Like yesterday. I head to a restaurant/bar around the corner where they have wifi. I look on Facebook to find a comment and a message from two high school friends. And it kind of shocks me. We weren't close friends in high school....more high school classmates. But here it is, two uplifting messages on Facebook.

It reminds of a time I was down, and frustrated in Buffalo years ago. I couldn't think of what to do. No one was about. So I went for a walk. And it poured outside. I must have walked six miles that night. It was 2 or 3 in the morning. I was getting soaked. And it wasn't bothering me at all because of the mood I was in. Then, out of no where this van pulls over just ahead of me. A guy hops out and yells for me. He runs over, and hands me an umbrella. He says "Stay dry" and "Pass it on." And then he smiles and gets back in the van. All it took was that. That one gesture and I felt great. And I did pass it on later.

Moral: Even bloody knuckles heal.

Photo 146

A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood

So I had some weird dreams last night. One was straight out of the movie Akira. One was out of an old Batman cartoon. And one was me driving my car nowhere.

And I wake up to a Joan Osborne song stuck in my head. I'm not sure the title. Not off the top of my head. But the one line I remember is "His eyes are a blue million miles." Its a good song.

I think, maybe, thinking about it this morning, its not that I don't want to go to Angie's wedding. That's not it. Its the flying to Vegas for two days and flying back just to see her married. That's the part I don't like. I mean she lives in Boston. I don't want to go to Vegas. I don't want to spend the money to go there and back. Its a hack excuse. And I'm going anyways. I wouldn't miss it. Its just a tight monetary time for me.

Oh well. I just woke up. Its amazing how 8 hours of sleep can make you feel a lot better. Time to shower and go to work. I haven't shaved in almost two weeks. I'm not going to today either.

Photo 141

Bloody Knuckles

I left in the middle of a snowstorm yesterday. Took me four times as long to get to work as usually. Worked late to outlast the storm. Arrived home two hours after it had stopped snowing to a perfectly clear street. I thanked god for giving me a plowed street to park on. As I walked up to my apartment I break through thick snow up to my shin into a icy cold puddle. The two minute walk up to my apartment from there leaves my foot painfully cold and extremely pale after I take my shoe off.

I sit at the computer to find no internet connection. My bill is due on Saturday, but they decided to shut off my connection yesterday. Which leaves me to pay $40 to get reconnected on top of the bill. I get paid tomorrow, which I thought was perfect because I could pay the bill before it was due. I went to bed early, pissed that the soonest they can reconnect my internet is Saturday. Which is when my bill was due anyways.

I wake up today in a slightly better mood. I make my coffee and head down to my car, which was ticketed at midnight. There was a parking ban in Cleveland yesterday. And I got ticketed five minutes before midnight. Over 7 hours after the snow stopped. Over 5 hours after my street was plowed for the last time. And its $50.

For some reason, these two events in close proximity have completely crushed my happiness of the New Year. Maybe its the new Chinese Year. And my crappy fortune from that. But I just fell from whatever high I was riding since January first. And I was frustrated. When I was down and depressed in November I drank. When I was frustrated this morning, I punched the ceiling of my car. I didn't know what else to do. And I was frustrated. Am frustrated. So I punched the ceiling in my car while driving to work.

I'm not an angry, or mean, or physical person. I'm very laid back and go with the flow. But these two events hit me just right. So I hit the ceiling in my car because its a meaningless harmful act that helped me release a little of my frustration. And my knuckles eventually bled. And I didn't want to go to work. But I did. And worked late again. For the fourth day in a row.

So now I'm sitting in a coffee shop typing this up. With the last two dollars cash I have on me spent on coffee. The other three were spent on windshield wiper fluid earlier tonight, because of course I ran out on my way home.

So not having internet leads to another problem. I never bought tickets for Angie's wedding. I put money aside for it. That I am trying hard not to spend on bills and a bullshit parking ticket. And I hate to sound petty, but to be honest I don't know if I want to go. I will go, because she's family, because she's my sister, because its her wedding and I love her. But I can't honestly say I want to go or am really looking forward to going. Which is probably why I put off buying a ticket. Am I a horrible person for not wanting to fly to Vegas for two days to see my sister get married?

The answer is obviously yes. I am ashamed for even typing that. But whatever. Its been a crappy day.

Here's a photo I took of my bandaged fingers. The second knuckles are the ones all cut up. The other knuckles are just raw and red. Bloody knuckles indeed.



A little girl brought in a whole slew of brand new barrettes today. Guess what happened.


Stitched Up

I went to work stitching up my hoodie today. Its been months since it was shredded with a large knife. I've recently started wearing sweaters and kind of missed have a big hoodie to just lounge in at home. Not that I need one with how warm my apartment is, but its nice to have.

So I was sewing all day, and my fingers now hurt. Doesn't help that I nicked myself with the needle more times than I care to admit. Makes me think I should try to get back to crocheting or knitting (I know how to do both, just not well). Anyways, here's a picture of the newly revived sweater. Click on it for a bigger image. See if you can spot the places I had to stitch up.


Whiskey Dreams

Last night I finished my whiskey. I had this long phone call with Pat (we're long distance drinking buddies) about life, relationships and all sorts of other shit that guys only seriously talk about when they're drunk. Anyways, Pat was freaking wasted, I felt good too. And then I had one of those realistic dreams I have every once in a while. It was with my friend Alena, well Alena and I were friends. I haven't seen or spoke to her in years.

So the dreams starts in a parking garage. Alena is there to pick up a car she left there for a few days. Her total bill is $115 dollars. She goes to pay it when I say wait, that doesn't make any sense. After reading fine print on the back of her bill I find out she only has to pay half that amount. The guy in the booth is pissed that I saved her money. We get in her car and drive.

I come to find out we're in Cleveland. She was just driving through on her way to Chicago (she lives in Chicago, her parents live in Erie, PA). She wants her couch back (we lived together years ago, and when we moved in we bought this couch really cheap....well she bought and I gave her money for it). When she moved out I kept the couch.

We drive to another parking garage. and go up to the roof. The garage is surrounded by a really old church on one side, the shore line on the other side, and some old brick buildings on a third side. I remember vividly looking around and seeing graffiti on the church, metal link fences around the yards of the old brick buildings, and birds flying over the shore line. Anyways Alena gets out of the car and goes over to another car, which is hers too.

She puts some bags she has into the back of the car. I carry over a few bottles of wine and put them in the back seat. I look over at her and she's trying to drag the couch to her car. I have to explain how it has a slip cover now because I lost the one she made for it in my move to Cleveland. After trying we decide the couch won't fit in her car.

She says she has to get going. That she supposed to meet her boyfriend later that day in Chicago. She looks exactly how I remember her despite having not seen her in over four years. We joke and hug and say we should meet again some time. There is none of that anger or resentment that I would expect when we next meet. That I probably deserve for the last time we spoke.

I ask her if she's in any shows coming up. She tells she has this great one man (or woman) show she's doing, but its only one weekend and its next weekend. I tell her I'll make it. Its the least I can do. She is shocked that I'll make it. I mention its only a tank of gas and a few hours of driving, and I've got years of friendship to make up for. She says she will call me and let me know the details and gets in her car and leaves.

And I wake up. Like I said, whiskey dreams.

< 100%

Less than 100 percent. Get it. Yeah I know, hilarious.

I've been under the weather so I'm giving it the old college solution. Drink as much Orange Juice as you can every night until you feel better. So last night I drank a 1/2 gallon of OJ. And tonight I drank another 1/2 gallon. I don't know if its the massive amount of sugar in the OJ, or the Vitamin C, but I am feeling better. I'll probably drink another half gallon tomorrow also.

And then down a whole slew of Tums as the heartburn inevitable kicks in.


Things I learned this weekend:

I love to Cross Country Ski.
Cross Country skiing is hard.
It feels good to exercise.
The Reader is an interesting movie.
People at independent movies like The Reader get offended when you laugh during the credits.
A movie after some drinking usually ends a night out.
Nights out are good for the soul.
Dundee Honey Brown is a cheap beer out here.
Dundee Honey Brown is an ok beer.
Angelo really needed to be groomed.
When the heat breaks, it gets really cold fast.
When the pipes freeze, I can't take a shower to warm up.
I am really enjoying drawing every day.
Duct tape bags are easy to start, hard to finish.
I like cereal.

Woo. I think that covers most of it.

Long Cold Entry

Its been cold. Thankfully heat is included in my rent. Up until now I haven't actually put plastic on the windows. Haven't even considered it. When the temperature gets up into the high 30's and low 40's I've had to open the windows because it gets too hot. When its below zero outside I am slightly chilly.

I'm wearing a sweater inside for the first time this winter. Crazy. At least it will warm up some tomorrow.

Random looking the other way picture.


Oh and one last thing. I show my friend Danny my drawings at work on an almost daily basis. She is a phenominal artist and painter. I told her of my Day One-Hundred drawing and what I had intended but decided I'd never be able live up to the image in my head. Just not my drawing style. She takes my sketch pad and sketches in a minute what I had been thinking. I'll have to try harder next time.


Bleeped Up

No more bottles of wine before bed.

I just had a messed up dream. I dreamt I was at work and got called into the Kitchen. First there was almost a grease fire, but then my boss says "remember when you and your co-worker were filming a version of the Crow here last year, before he died." And I reply "Yes"

She pulls out the camera we recorded on and says, "You can see all this stuff on the tape. All you have to do is switch from watching in regular to watching it in widescreen mode," and does so.

There's this little symbol of a house moving that flashes on the screen, and then it is put in widescreen. All of sudden the tape is now some weird version of grayscale and black and white, but with random color. Kind of like Sin City. There is a lot going on in ever scene. I can't actually tell what the movie is about, but every scene just has people that are stuck in a loop. There are children (all are children from work) just falling on top of each, one is stumbling in a coffin, one walks off screen. In the shot someone is going down a slide repeatedly, and there is a shot of Monica's (my boss) kid Nikolas walking away from her and just disappearing on screen.

~Jeez that dream is muffed up. No more bottles of wine before bed. Boxes maybe....but no more bottles.


One of my good friends, dare say best friends, is Josh Wallens. He is a great person. I mean really....even out of my best friends, people whom I consider my closest friends, Josh is a more loyal, truer friend. That's not putting down my best friends. It just, well I don't think Josh ever thinks of himself over another person, or even better than another person. Really. At least I can't see it. Not to say Josh doesn't go after his own goals, he does. But he is very true to himself. You meet Josh, and there's no wrong impression to get. There's no other side to him. There's no hidden side you see after you know him for a while. The first time you talk to Josh, its him there.

And, well, Josh is the reason I came to value my college friends so much. He moved away in the middle of my senior year. And he moved back to Buffalo years later. And he told me once "I've been all over but never met friends like I met at Niagara. Like you guys." He went to a couple different colleges. He has lived in many states. But he still holds true to that. And it kind of opened my eyes a little bit to how unique I think my college friends are.

While he lived in Buffalo he recorded his own album under the name Steiner. He asked me to come up with album art for him. I came up with several designs. I forget what he gave me as actual guidelines. I think it was the Dead Kennedy's logo. The first is what he choose as his album cover. The rest are my variations. I still listen to his album all the time. It was called "Welcome to Plan B"






And here's a Steiner live performance from years ago. This is a B-side. Didn't actually make the album.


Good Morning

This is probably one of my favorite morning songs. Its from the tv show Home Movies. It describes perfectly how I feel about my morning coffee.



..... all of a sudden I don't remember what I was going to write about.

Crazy Lazy Sunday

It was a crazy lazy Sunday. Before you get confused.....there was really no craziness. It was just more than lazy, so....Crazy Lazy. I can make up my own meanings for adjectives if I want to.

I slept countless hours today in multiple naps. Ok....if you counted the hours you might have gotten to six. Six is close to countless I'm sure. I made cookies. I realized I needed an actual meal today (I don't count the small salad I had early on as a meal) so I made Sweet and Sour Chicken and some rice.

And I drew. To catch up. Oh....and watched 24. Which was fantastic. Its the only show I get excited to watch new episodes of. Oh and I also hooked up my digital convertor box for my antenna. Its not bad....just not all the stations out here are in digital yet. But the ones that are look fantastic, or at least better than regular antenna.

So I did a couple things. That's not too lazy. Maybe because it took till after 6 pm for me to really start moving today I feel it was lazy. Doesn't mean it was a bad Sunday. Just a lazy one.

Good Weekend

So it was a good weekend. Nah...a great weekend. I spent a decent amount of money, which wasn't good. But all things considered it was worth it.

So random tidbits from the weekend:

-Dan and I spent our record amount of money for drinking in one place for the evening.
-Dan lost a contact and spent half an hour looking for it in my bathroom (including taking the piping apart under the sink to look for it).
-Dan kicked my ass in Soul Calibre.
-Met Brooke out for drinks and dinner.
-Brooke's holes got poked.
-Chatted with an off duty police officer about how there was no way we would be driving later.
-I found a sweet hat in Brooke's car that I wore.
-I explained to Brooke's step-sister why she intimidates guys.
-I showed my nipple to both Brooke and her step-sister.
-The wine bare we ended up at actually played Atom and His Package. How sweet is that?
-Brooke stepped in a giant puddle, even though she knew it was there.
-Delicious pretzels.
-Best Honey-Mustard ever.
-Ridiculously comfortable couch.
-Little sleep.
-I didn't get ticketed for leaving my car in a parking garage overnight.
-Hours upon hours of napping today, I probably won't be sleeping tonight.

Sure there is more to the story. But sometimes you have to keep the best parts in your head to smile about later.


This a short skit I wrote years ago in college. Probably in 1999 or 2000. Sometime junior year when Sean and I were upset that our roommate Matt spent all his time with Sarah. And although maybe the conversation about Matt and Sarah is dead on, its only cause we were friends and pissed Matt is never around, not a reflection on Sarah. I mean come on, I gave the best man speech at their wedding.

Time and Location: Late night, college dorm room, bunk beds

Sean: I'm going to bed (climbs in lower bunk)
AJ: Ya, me too (clmmers up to the top bunk)

Slight pause

AJ: You really tired?
Sean: Ya, quite a bit.
AJ: Wow, I'm not.
Sean: So why are you going to bed then?
AJ: I dunno.
Sean: No videogaming?
AJ: Nah.
Sean: Porn?
AJ: Nah, porn's only good for so long.
Sean: I guess.
AJ: Know what I was thinking?
Sean: What?
AJ: Socks are a thing of the past. No socks is the future.
Sean: Oh really?
AJ: Ya, I think in the future no one will wear socks. So I'm not wearing any now.
Sean: Why?
AJ: Cause, Its just my thoughts. And I'm right.
Sean: Well no socks is better than not wearing deodorant, too bad you do that also.
AJ: Ya, but there's a different reason for that. Deodorant causes pit stains. And they're no fun.
Sean: So you would rather smell than stain a shirt?
AJ: I don't smell, well on occasion I am a smelly bastard.
Sean: Like today.
AJ: Well ya, but that's cause I didn't shower.
Sean: But when's the last you showered everyday for a week?
AJ: Well I like grease. A little grease never hurt anyone, except the mutant grease.
Sean: If you say so.
AJ: Well I do.
Sean: Think Matt will be back tonight?
AJ: Considering its 3 a.m., I doubt it. Apparently friends don't matter.
Sean: Either that or Sarah matters more.
AJ: That frothy bitch, man I hate her.
Sean: Me too.
AJ: What would you do if they got married?
Sean: I wouldn't go to it.
AJ: Really?
Sean: Yup.
AJ: I would go, out of respect for our friendship, cause I'm a good person.
Sean: You keep telling yourself that.
AJ: I'm a better person than you.
Sean: Look at this year alone; who has done more horrid stuff?
AJ: I've only done kinda bad stuff.
Sean: In your own eyes maybe.
AJ: So you're better than me?
Sean: Yep.
AJ: Aww crap...I'm a bad person.
Sean: Finally accepting it, huh?
AJ: I guess. Man my feet are cold.
Sean: Put some socks on.
AJ: I think I'll be fine. I'll just go to sleep instead.

Lights out.

Cat Scratch Fever

Angelo, my cat...the best cat in the world, has left all marked up. He doesn't have front claws, but he does have back claws. Being that I'm his sole companion (and him mine by the way) he likes to cling to me, to sit on my lap, and to climb up my chest and put his head and front paws over my shoulder. All of this leads to him digging his rear claws into me.

So I have long scratches on my legs, arms, and chest. A lot of them are 3 or 4 inches, from times when he tried jumping up on me but didn't get good footing and slid down whatever part of my body he was clinging to. I suppose its his way of telling me I need to clip his nails (I hate doing that).

Feeling Groovy

You know what....for some reason I came out of this weekend feeling really good. Not that I did anything in particular to make myself feel better. I mean boil it down and I got coffee, went grocery shopping and cleaned my apartment. But, surprisingly I feel much better about life. Wooo.

Grounded Resolutions

I want resolutions that I actually can keep without having to do much.

So here they are with some explanations.

1) I will get out more. I have been cooped up in my apartment for the last month and half. I need to go out more. Even if its just for a walk or coffee.

2) I will keep losing weight. I say keep because in the last year and a half I have lost about 25 pounds (I was fat not too long ago). I haven't lost it by doing anything except eating less. I don't keep junk food in the apartment. I try to eat better meals. That's it. And I've lost weight. And it makes me happy when people notice it (although that also means they noticed I was fat.) So I'll keep it up, ten more pounds and I'll be really pleased with myself.

3) I will not let one person ruin my happiness. I've not done too much to make myself feel better. But I'm going to get in control of it. I've got a decent job, I've got a good apartment, I have the best friends (even if they live elsewhere), I don't have a lot to complain about. So I'm done being dragged down.

4) I will keep up my sketch a day. Some days I miss a sketch, but I make it up. I think back to what I was feeling that day. Or what my predominate activity was that day, or song I that was stuck in my head. And draw about that to make it up. I don't consider that missing that day. I'm almost to 100 days in a row. If I make a year I'll be astonished. So why not astonish myself.

I don't feel any of those resolutions are impossible, or require that much of a change to my daily routine. So I feel like they are good resolutions. In honor of that, I'm going to shower now and walk down to the pub to have a beer. Why not.

The Christmas Spirit


Possible my favorite Christmas Present this year.

The New Year Dream

I woke up feeling really good today. Positive. It was bizarre. But I like that its the beginning of a new year and I actually felt good, no pretty great when I woke up. All because of a dream. Here it is......

I walk into a Mighty Taco late at night with this woman I just met. It is near 2 am, when this particular Mighty Taco closes. I don't know the woman I came with too well, I had just met her recently. She is a little shorter than me, has black hair, and is cute. But we come in as friends, or at least people who have just met.

We wait in a long line. She is in front of me and orders and gets her food. I am about to order when the cashier needs to change some high bills for smaller ones. This take about ten minutes, while the woman I came in with sits and starts eating. Just when I'm about to order an old man comes up and needs to have more milk put in his glass. I'm getting a little frustrated at having to wait so long, but just sigh and let him get his milk.

While the cashier is pouring his milk I turn to look at the black haired woman. She smiles. When I turn back the guy behind had just snuck in front of me to order his food. I start getting upset and yelling at him. The cashier tells me to deal with it and I yell at her. I start going into how slow she is and how long this line has been. (At this point it seems to have been well over twenty minutes since the black haired woman ordered.)

A man comes out from the back and tells me I have to go back with him. The black haired woman gets up and comes back with me. They put us in some small room (really a closet) to wait for a minute. There aren't any chairs and we stand. She tries to calm me a down a little since I'm really frustrated and angry.

They come back get us and take us into another room. In it are three people. The man who got me from the front is behind a desk. We sit in chairs on one side of the desk, and across from us sit another man and woman. The man (not behind the desk) starts into me asking what is wrong, and why I'm so upset.

I complain about the wait, the line, the cashier, how long it was between the black haired woman's order and me being able to order, everything. To this he says to me, "Why are you so upset? Why are you doing these things that upset you? Why are doing stupid things in your sad life to be destructive? I think its because you want to die."

I jump out of my chair at this. In the back of mind I wonder if he's right. But I decide to argue with him anyways. I start yelling at him about how he doesn't know my life. He doesn't know who I am. He can't judge me on what little he knows of me. He doesn't know where I'm from, or where I'm going in life. I scream all this, and turn and walk out. The black haired woman runs after me and grabs onto my arm.

We walk through the front of the Mighty Taco where everyone had heard me screaming from the back. They are all staring at us but we don't say a word. We leave out the front doors. Its night and cold outside. As we cross the street she looks up at me and smiles. And then leans in for a kiss.....

I don't why I had such a vivid dream. Or why I was able to remember so much of it. Or why it made me so happy when I woke up. But I'm pretty thankful for it. I'm thankful I got to remember so much of it. It made for a good start to the new year. Or at least let me start the year with positive thoughts in my head.