Tuesday, October 30, 2007

How terrible is wisdom when it brings no profit to the wise?

OK. I promise, no more sports related posts for a while. But forgive me if I had to spread my Sox-loving joy around a bit.

Anyway. I was recently talking to a friend of mine who is having something of a mid-life crisis (Despite not being in the middle of his life. Unless he dies young. Which he might, if he keeps annoying me) and I got to thinking about what makes a good life. You know, what do you really, truly need. My friend has developed this malaise where he is annoyed with the American need to own something bigger, better, faster, which is part of the reason he jumped on a plane and is now surfing his life away in Indonesia.

I maintain the things in life that make me happy are relatively simple things, and the rest is just window dressing.

So, in no particular order, here are the basic things in this life that make me content:

1. My wife. No-brainer, that one.

2. My house. Yes, it's a material thing, but... people forget - a house is a project. It's a chance to do things the way you want to. Much like sculpting an elephant out of ice (just chip away at everything that isn't part of an elephant), owning a house is just changing the things that aren't the house you want, until you have... the house you want. I may have mangled that metaphor. Shut up.

3. A barber who doesn't need to ask you how you want your hair cut. I've finally achieved this status, and for some reason, it pleases me.

4. A rock-solid alibi. I know I said this list wasn't in order, but if it was? This might be #1.

5. A bartender who starts pouring/uncaps your favorite as soon as he sees you. Um... I've got a couple of these. Uh oh.

6. Dogs. Come on... who doesn't love dogs? I'll tell you who: sick, crazy people. We established long ago that if you don't like dogs, you simply can't come to our house. That might also be because our dogs will aggressively insist on getting in your lap, and snuggle you into submission.

7. Sharp blades. Because nothing sucks more than not being able to cut up and dispose of your... accidents.

8. Books. I don't care if it's history, horror, or creepy Gilmore Girls slash fiction - as long as you have books, you can be content. Also, please do not think that I read creepy slash fiction. Because I don't.

9. Sports. I know, I know, I said I wouldn't talk about the Red Sox. But the truth is, there is something truly exciting about sports, about following your team and the sense of camaraderie that comes with it. I know not everyone enjoys sports, but I do, and dammit, it makes me happy.

10. A car with a good-sized trunk. Let's be honest - if the blades aren't handy, you'll need some spacious and impromptu transportation. Also, make sure your car is reliable and inconspicuous.

11. Food. What can I say. I love me some good food. It doesn't have to be fancy (though I sometimes enjoy that), it doesn't have to be expensive (though sometimes it's worth the price), but good food is one of my great joys.

12. Sleep. And of course, this one is bittersweet for me. Because I love sleep. But I'm not terribly good at it. I love sleeping late, though I rarely do. For some reason, regardless of how late I'm up, on most Saturdays I'm out of bed and dressed by 8:30. It's official, I'm turning into my father.

13. Speaking of which - my parents. Who I miss terribly, and think about constantly. Those of you who love your folks, but bitch about them - at least they're close by, you know? Having parents across an ocean? Big time sucky.

14. Friends who don't ask questions. The best friend is the one who, when you show up and say you need to bury something in their yard, simply asks, "do you need to borrow a shovel?"

15. Music. I can't help it, I'm a music junkie. I'm addicted to music of almost every kind, and collect it at a ridiculous pace. But it's the only way I survive the commute to work, and one of my favorite things is learning about, and listening to, new music.

16. Beer. I know, I know. Lame and obvious and derivative. But dammit, it tastes good, and it makes me feel good. So there.

17. The Ocean. I hope to never live too far from the ocean. It's one of my favorite things - the sound, the smell, the view of the ocean. It's one of those things that has an instant calming affect on me, and always brings a smile to my face.

18. Good sound-proofing. Because the screaming bothers the neighbors.

Anyway, that's all kids. All you need to live a life of contentment. Some would say I'm oversimplifying, but I beg to differ. Like I said, everything else is just window dressing.

Listening to: The Clash - Somebody Got Murdered

Monday, October 29, 2007

They sang another victory song

For today, all is right with the world.

Listening to: Dropkick Murphys - Tessie

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

That just happened...

I was cleaning up my desk, trying to find a stack of budget reports. I toss some papers to the floor. I spin my wheeled office chair around, reach for the stack on the floor, tilt the the chair, tip over, send the chair flying across the room, crash half into my desk, half into the floor, kick a cup of soup and a piece of cornbread off the desk and onto the floor, and knock over the trash can. I swear loudly, and look up to see three people standing in the doorway, stunned. As I get up, I mash my hand into the cornbread, effectively smushing it into the carpet (and my hand).

This happened roughly 15 minutes ago.

Fucking hell.

The soup is fucking everywhere.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Shipping up to Boston


Friday I get an email from my friend Jen, asking me, if the Red Sox series go to game seven, do I want to go?

Do I want to go? OF COURSE I want to go. But... shit. I have a wedding to go to. Two of Mrs. TK's work friends are getting married on Sunday. I regretfully, and tragically, decline. I turn down a chance to see my team play in Game Seven of the American League Championship Series.

I am not a happy boy. I get home Friday night, and...

Me: Yeah, Jen offered me a ticket. Bummer, but I told her I couldn't make it.
Mrs. TK: Ouch.
Me: Yeah.
MTK: Wait... you know what? You should go.
Me: WHAT? But... we...
MTK: Whatever, we'll take two cars, or I'll get a ride from someone. We'll go, you can stay for the ceremony, have a drink and some hors d'oeuvres, and then take off. You better call her before she gives the ticket away.
Me: (happy dance)

Folks... this is one of those moments when you know you've married the right person. Not that I didn't know it before, but... I mean, that's All-Star wife material right there. Hall of fucking Fame.

Saturday night, we watch Game Six with baited breath. Victory! Celebration!

Sunday. Watch a little football, get all gussied up for the wedding. Drive to Newport, RI. Sit through a beautiful ceremony (seriously. It was outdoors in a field on a cliff overlooking the ocean. Spectacular). Go inside. Drink a beer during cocktail hour. Sit down. They announce there will be three toasts. THREE? First up: Maid of honor. Hers... it's nice, but... it's long.
  • Quick aside here. I've been the Best Man at two weddings. I have a simple philosophy on toasts: Keep it simple, be funny, don't be crude or too embarrassing, and be BRIEF. People are there to eat, drink, dance, and maybe make some bad decisions. Don't keep them from that. OK, that's all.
Best Man - quick, sweet, touching.
Father of the Groom: Likewise.

I bolt up, run over, shake the groom's hand, hug the bride, and I think I left a vapor trail, I ran out of there so fast. I barrel up to Boston - It's 6:45, the game starts at 8:15, and I've got 75 miles to drive, the find parking (on a night when parking... let's just say it's scarce), get to the park. I fly up to Boston, park in a garage, get in a cab and say, "Get me as close to Fenway as you can." Cab driver hauls through downtown, I throw money through the glass, and... I made it by the middle of the first inning. Proceed to watch the game in my wedding attire and a baseball hat. And let the record show: I DID NOT SPILL MUSTARD ON MYSELF!

And... well, most of you know how that ended. Let's just say there was lots of yelling, lots of high-fiving and hugging complete strangers, and I am very sleepy today. But I haven't stopped smiling yet.

Listening to: The Avalanches - Frontier Psychiatrist

Friday, October 19, 2007


Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Now we end up takin' the long way home, Lookin' overdressed wearin' buckets of stale cologne

Soooo... Mrs. TK and I, being the suburban wunderkinds that we are, were feeling hungry and cheap a few nights ago. And where do you go when you're hungry, broke, and want to watch baseball? Why, Applebee's of course!

As I've mentioned before, we live in super-suburbia. So of course there's an Applebee's, just like there are ubiquitous Dunkin' Donuts, car dealerships, friendly neighborhood convenience stores, barber shops named Joe's or Pete's, and little league parks. Our particular one is quite nice, as those things go. Except this night was a bit... unusual. Different, shall we say.

We went on a weeknight, took our seat in the bar section, ordered something to drink and started perusing the heart attack-inducing menu. As I'm glancing through it, the following conversation takes place:

Mrs. TK: Um... does anything about tonight strike you as odd?
Me: No.
MTK: Look around.
Me: (looks around) What? Just a bunch of guys watching the game. Looks like some construction workers.
MTK: Uh huh...
Me: Weird. Those two guys are sitting kind of close to each other... and... rubbing each others backs...
What the hell?
MTK: I think our Applebee's turned gay!
Me: What? Just because there's a gay couple here?
MTK: Keep looking....

And then we realize... I think we're the only straight couple in the room.

At Applebees.

In suburban Massachusetts. It was somewhat unusual. Our waiter was gay. The bartender? gay. Most of the patrons? Also gay. It was actually kind of awesome. Our "friendly neighborhood bar and grill" had come out of the closet! And it was a mix of nicely dressed, well coiffed gay men, and guys in dirty jeans and work boots with awesome Masshole accents. Picture this conversation, if you will, between a Masshole and the bartender (spelling to reflect the accent):

Masshole: What's up, kid.
Bartender: Oh, nothing.
Masshole: Dude, it's my fahkin' birthday on Satahday.
Bartender: Oh, that's so great! Congratulations!
Masshole: Yah, dude. We're gonna go out, get fahkin' bawmbed.
Bartender: Sweet!
Masshole: (Now rubbing the bartenders hand) Yah, dude. Fahkin, you should come out, kid. We're gonna have cocktails, mebbe go dancin' or some shit.
Bartender: Really? I'd love to!

I mean... talk about incongruous.

Anyway, I'm just glad my little suburb is open-minded enough to have this. It makes me quite happy, actually. Our friendly neighborhood Brokeback Applebee's!

Listening to: Say Anything - The Writhing South

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

I go to work like a boxer, train the brain and aim to outfox ya...

Dear applicants who have sent me resumes recently:

OK, look. I understand that I can be something of a jerk. And perhaps my standards are a bit too high. Maybe it's not you. Maybe it's me. But... if I could just take a teensy, tiny, little second of a moment to point out a few things? Would that be OK?

1. Please spell my name correctly.

2. Please spell the name of my agency correctly.

3. I understand that you are "eiger" to start a new position. However, you do not appear to be "eiger" to use a spell-check, you dumb fuck.

4. A beeper? Seriously? You left a beeper number as a contact number? I'm not looking for a drug dealer. (Although... let's talk later, OK?)

5. While the irony is delicious, I cannot, in good conscience, look closely at someone who wrote that they are "proficint in Microsoft Work." Thanks for playing, though.

6. OK, look. The apostrophe thing. It's (NOT "ITS") killing me. Absolutely killing me. Please, learn to use it properly? Before I explode? Look, there's a whole website about it. Read it. Learn it. Love it.

7. "I can manage meetings and maintain meeting materials masterfully." While I am basking in your alliterative glory, I only barely understand what this means. Also, was it deliberate? Because if it was, I either want to shake your hand or throw you off a bridge.

8. I also understand that you sometimes use the same cover letter for a variety of applications. However, it is important to point out that this is not the Museum of Fine Arts. You stupid bastard.

9. I like a comfortable work environment. So I can appreciate those who work towards that. However, can we talk about your interest in "building rappaport with those who I work with"? As in... Michael Rappaport? Because while I loved him in True Romance and Kiss of Death, I don't think he belongs in this agency. Especially since you plan on creating some sort of cyborg-Michael Rappaport with your co-workers. Because that will end badly for everyone.

10. Please spell your own name correctly.




Two notes:
1. Yes, someone did spell their name wrong. One way on the cover letter, another on the resume.

2. Shut up, Meg.

Monday, October 08, 2007

"I swear I want 'em to play that song on the pipes at my funeral when I die"

OTV, this one's for you pal.

Better luck next time.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Let em' in on your secret heart

Who's ready for some rambling? No? Well, go screw, 'cuz it's happening.

Tuesday was something of an event for me. It was an otherwise normal day, work, eat, etc. And then, that night, I went out for a couple of drinks. Which is, as some of you may know, not that unusual. What made it unusual was that I went out with two fellow bloggers. It was... actually, it was great. They were both fun, very cool people. I must admit, I was nervous as hell about it. I mean - it's the internet. Who knows what people are like in the really real world? What if they turned out to be giant douchebags? Or werewolves? What if they tried to kill me and turn my skin into sheets and feast on my steaming entrails?

Worst of all, what if they were just flat-out fucking dull?

Well, they weren't. They were charming and funny and cool as hell.

But it brings to me a strange point - I feel like I've lifted the veil that has shrouded my blogging (journey? career? endless diatribe?) thing for the first time. I mean, until recently, I never actually considered meeting anyone who I read, or who comes by the ole' Meat Factory. It's somewhat comforting that they were actually normal semi-normal people.

But see... here's the thing. Here's my strange little secret.

No one knows about this site. With the exception of Mrs. TK, who treats it like she treats my tattoos, my drinking, and my clumsiness - that is, just another side of the man she foolishly decided to marry. Not one friend, not one family member, knows anything about this. And for a while, that used to be cool. As I said to Matt once, I kind of liked having this secret world. It was fun, and it was special, and it was mine and mine alone. And I still like that about it. I know that I'm probably the exception and not the rule - I think a lot of peoples' friends and family know about their sites. Not me.

When I started this mess over a year ago, it was basically just so I could comment on other sites. Then I took about a six-month hiatus, then started up in earnest. Now... now people actually read it. I'm not always sure why, but you do (and don't think I don't appreciate it). But I still never told anyone. I guess after a while, it got weird to think about:

"Oh, hey guys. By the way, for the last 18 months I've had my own website that I write in sort of regularly and now know a bunch of people that you've never heard of."

I dunno. I just don't know. I don't know why I've suddenly started to think about this, but I have. And I'm not sure what to do.

Anyway. Enough about that.

Some of you may have read about my plight last night over at I'm Quietly Judging You. If you care to, check that out and come back (but don't read the comments, because they're a quagmire of lunacy and barely constrained sexual tension). Well, you should be happy to know that our Executive Director took pity on me. We were sitting in the terminally dull meeting, listening to the Police Commissioner ramble on about some shit. I was going out of my mind. Checking my watch compulsively, and fidgeting like a 5 year old who had to pee (one thing you may not know - I fidget incessantly. All the time. I might have OCD. But I can't go 30 minutes without getting all antsy in my pantsy). And then, we heard a roaring noise...

... it was fighter jets. They were flying over Fenway, which is only a couple of miles from my office. I glanced out the window glumly, turned back to the table, and my ED caught my eye and gave me the subtle high sign, and silently mouthed:

"Get out of here".

I double taked, stared at him, and he repeated his gesture, and I quietly gathered my paperwork, smiled at him, and fucking BOLTED out of the building, down the street, into my car, and made it to the bar where me friends were in time for the middle of the second inning. (It's worth noting that my ED is a Yankees fan, and still took pity on me. I think I'm going to send him a nice fruit basket.)

So alls well that ends well. I made my meeting appearance, and got to see a great game and had a great time.

"That's right buddy"

That's all for now. But I got subpoenaed yesterday for court tomorrow, so maybe you'll get to hear about that.


I just got offered tickets to tomorrow night's game. God, I take back some of the things I said about you.

Monday, October 01, 2007

Everyone's so intimately rearranged, everyone can focus clearly with that shine

Look, I know it's been a while. Shut up already, will you? I've been busy. It's not you, it's me.

Actually, it's you.

In all seriousness, September was one of the busiest months I've ever had, and it's looking like October isn't going to downshift much, either. But I suppose I should write something, for fear that someone will give me even more shit. So here's the recap of the past week or so.

I went to a wedding this past weekend, which was fantastic. It was the wedding of my half-Indian, half Kansan friend, and his now-wife, who is Lithuanian. Let's just say it was quite eclectic. Saturday night was the dull-as-watching-paint-dry Christian church ceremony, with more than 50% of it in Lithuanian. It's bad enough that I don't know shit about Christianity, but now we have to do it in other languages?

As a side bar, let me just say - I've been to weddings of a variety of different denominations, and man - do Catholics know how to fuck up what is supposed to be a celebratory day. No offense to any Catholics, but... man. Did we really need the passage about the guy with sores all over his body? Did we really need that? Egads. And also - can we do something about the pews? I'm a naturally fidgety person, and I thought that if I shifted wrong, I was gonna tear that thing into toothpicks by accident. Small and uncomfortable is not a good combo if people are gonna be sitting (and standing. and kneeling. rinse, repeat.) for a couple of hours in a row. Though I suspect it would have been funny to see me standing in the wreckage of a church pew in my suit, waiting for the lightning to strike.

Anyway. Saturday night was the reception, which is where all the fun is anyway. And it was a ball. I, of course, remained sober and sedate, as is my way. And by that I mean... I got rowdily drunk, and my friends and I did whiskey toasts, which is never a good idea. But I succeeded in not spilling anything on myself, which is the equivalent of me winning a war single-handed.

The following day, after waking up and feeling like someone had left a steak knife in my brain, we went back and there was the Hindu ceremony, which was fascinating. Of course, one of my friends (and a groomsman, incidentally) was so hungover he simply left in the middle of it, to go (as he phrased it) "shout at his shoes". Not pretty. But the ceremony was great, we had a lovely brunch at a hotel on the Charles River with a great view, and I accidentally got drunk again. At one in the afternoon. Whoops.

Friday, Mrs. TK and I went to The Big E in Springfield, MA, which is a... I'm not sure how to describe it. It's a combination of carnival, amusement park, shopping expo and livestock expo. It's actually far weirder than it sounds. But it was a surprisingly fun time, and not just because of the inordinate number and variety of mullets. I think the highlight of it was there was a demonstration by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, where they did intricate choreographed patterns and whatnot on horseback. Mrs. TK was fascinated by the horses, I was fascinated because in my mind, the Mounties are always dressed like that. That's what I like to think, anyway. I picture bars and supermarkets up in Canada with guys dressed like this all the time wandering in and out. I think this is what they wear when they have sex, or mow their lawns. At least, I hope so.

Wednesday I got a new tattoo. I was gonna post pictures, but that turned out to be harder than I thought. It's on my shoulder and wraps around my arm a couple of times. Not an easy photo to take. It was a great experience and I love the new work. So anyone in the Boston area - Redemption Tattoo in Porter Square, Cambridge. Good spot. Ask for Josh.

Anyway. There's my recap of the past week, for anyone who cares. This week marks a momentous occasion - namely, meeting up with a fellow blogger for the first time. Should be interesting, though he's probably a gigantic douchebag. I kid, Matt, I kid.

Only not really.

Oh, and one more thing:

Fuck. Yeah.

Listening to: Dropkick Murphys - Wicked Sensitive Crew