Working in an office leads to having a lot of junk food around all the time. Today there were two birthday celebrations and a meeting which resulted in lots of treats around to be consumed, including "doughnuts the size of life preservers" (seriously they were large doughnuts) and some kind of French silk cake thing. God, I'm going to be enormous soon. My old job at the Adult Education Store solved this problem by folding all of their celebrations into one monthly celebration known as "Cake Day." That's one thing they did right.
Obviously, this has not been the season for blogging. The most notable event of recent times has of course been the closing of the Evanston Barnes and Noble, my spiritual home since the end of 8th grade. Actually it closed it's old location and moved across the street. I weep at the passage of this beloved landmark of my youth, where I spent many, many hours reading things without paying for them and solidifying some of my best friendships in high school, as I used to hang out with a lot of my friends there. Dust in the wind, dude.
Lest you scoff about mourning the passage of a chain bookstore branch, understand this was one of the first B & N's in the Chicagoland area, before they became a mega-powerhouse, and the design of this store was much quieter, more modest and quirkier than the prototypical suburban Barnes and Noble (which is what Evanston has now) You could get lost in those cracks and I often did. Still, this B & N displaced the Evanston Kroch's and Brettano's, the bookstore chain that once ruled Chicago. There's always a bigger fish.
So this was like my "American Pie". What Don McLean felt about Buddy Holly's plane crash is what I felt about this store closing. The Day the Books Died. So I'd intended to spend one last night there last week, to properly say my goodbye. Only to discover that the bastards closed it one day earlier than planned. So instead of "American Pie" it was more like Star Wars, when Luke comes home to find the charred remains of his murdered family. "Uncle Owen? Aunt Beru? NOOOOOOO!!!!"
And suchlike. Guess this is my impetus to go out and topple the Empire, then.
Having, just in time, made my denunciation of Joe Lieberman a couple of posts back, I must continue to fulfil my blogging responsibilities by finally making my Snakes on a Plane joke, because every blogger has to do that. Okay, here it is:
Not many people know that Snakes on a Plane is actually a sequel to the 1988 Sigourney Weaver vehicle Gorillas in the Mist.
That was it. Thank you.
So yeah, I figure I'll meet you somewhere in your neighborhood sometime...I don't know, 6:30?
Good, very decisive, I knew you were the right man for this job.
Okay, I usually don't get home until 7 though.
An entirely new equation! Must adapt! Must adapt now!
Right, that's cool...we'll say...7 um, 7-ish.
Exactly, maybe 7:01. I need at least a minute.
She's being dryly amusing! Say something witty! Say something witty now or you will be utterly without worth in both her eyes and your own!
Sure, that's fine, hell, we'll go crazy and give it until 7...05, 06 even. But that's it, that's all the leeway I'm giving you...
That wasn't witty! That made you sound like a controlling freak! Say you're just kidding!
I'm just kidding!
Now laugh awkwardly.
This would all be easier if there were fewer people involved.
You may have read or heard about this story by now:
I wasn't aware of it until my roommate showed it to me last night. Anyone who reads the story will see that this Joe Francis character is a very sick, very scary guy, what's most scary to me is that he seems to have a large crowd of admirers. In high school/college I had a fairly creepy acquaintance who made no secret of his great love for porn. My friends thought it was funny, if only because, having been born before 1985, we're probably among the last generation of Americans who remember when that sort of thing was supposed to be a private pursuit, not something to revel in and be proud of. I was also told that he was writing a screenplay about a pedophile, a sympathetic treatment, one that would blow open the minds of the filmgoing public because "You're on his side the whole time." Anyway, this guy, lost touch with my friends and I can't say I'm sorry about that, but we found his MySpace page, which basically says "Hi I'm a sexual predator." I'm certainly not saying that anyone who looks at porn is a sexual predator but I think anyone who does so without the slightest twinge of discomfort is somebody I'd keep a very close eye on.
Anyway, this guy worships Mr. Francis, talks about how he lives the ideal life, babes and booze and cash, capitalism at it's finest. Reading this article I think about Joey's ideal death. My roommate says she doesn't want to ask why the girls "go wild" anymore, she wants to ask Joey why he rapes women. It is indeed a more appropriate question.
Ms. Hoffman's a very good writer, and obviously very courageous to face this guy down. I certainly hope something comes of it that leads to him facing some sort of punishment. My favorite part of the article is the bit about the "qwerty keyboard":
"He says he loves women, is crazy about them. But sometimes it doesn't sound as though he is. The words he chooses, the stories he tells—they make a different point.
"My favorite is explaining to dumb chicks why the qwerty keyboard is called a qwerty keyboard, and why the letters aren't in order," he tells me. "They're, like, 18 years old, and they're, like, 'Wait a minute, there were typewriters?' And you got to start there."
I give him a look that says I have no idea what he's talking about. I haven't spent much time with 18-year-old girls lately, but the ones I know have usually heard of typewriters. But a qwerty keyboard? Never heard of it.
His eyes register my blank stare and he pounces, full of glee. "Hold on," he says excitedly. "You are a writer for the L.A. Times and you don't know this answer to this question?" He is shouting, turning to the back of the plane, making sure that everyone hears. "Unbelievable, she's 29 years old and she doesn't know about the qwerty keyboard!" It's a game, it seems. He's being playful. Sort of.
"She's going to slaughter me now," he shouts to the group as I keep smiling, writing in my notebook, tape recorder running. Apparently, he wants more of a reaction. He's pantomiming me typing furiously, writing an article.
"She's going to be looking at her keyboard going, 'Ah, you think you're so smart now.' Qwerty keyboard. Who's smart now?" He sounds happy. "She's going to be playing that tape back. It's going to be echoing in her head. Qwerty, qwerty, qwerty. She's going to go all psycho.""
Apparently Mr. Francis once glommed on to a bit of trivia as to why typewriter letters aren't arraigned in standard alphabetical order. This has apparently given him the idea that he is a scholar. Obviously, no evidence is necessary to demonstrate that he is also a gentleman.
Like Ms. Hoffman, I've never heard of a qwerty keyboard, although I knew there were typewriters.
I guess the entrepreneurial hero Joe Francis thinks I'm dumb. Almost as dumb as a girl.
I've been neglecting my blogdience lately. The Keyhole production of my play, The New Models was pretty good, lots of people came to see it. It lost the five way competition by a tantalizing handful of votes, but that's just a popularity contest anyway.
It occurs to me that as a "liberal blogger" (though I never get invited to the important conferences) I have most shamefully not spent nearly enough of my time and energy castigating Joe Lieberman and since I believe his primary is tomorrow, I must now rise to the challenge.
Joe Lieberman is a jerk. A complete kneebiter.
Joe Lieberman sucks so much. I really hope he loses. He is such an enormous, *enormous* tool. Seriously.
I fucking hate Joe Lieberman.
I'm feeling sick and tired and a cold coming on. When I'm about to have three houseguests in as many days, act in a play and also play host to a bunch of people (presumably) coming to see one I wrote.
Normally, this is where The Job would be lined up to make the sacrifice. But not when I'm a temp.
I'm looking forward to not being a temp.