Friday, July 23, 2004

Falling tears drum bitter rhythms...

But on a completely unrelated note, I am about to leave work, dash home, drop off my vehicle, grab my luggage, hurtle to the airport, scramble through the congested streets of downtown San Diego to get to the Comic Con and try to meet Michael Chabon.

What could possibly go wrong?


Thursday, July 22, 2004

Saddle Up, Soldiers
Captain Gurg Frenzy here.  We're under heavy bombardment from Jaclyn's Blog-Range Metaphor Cannons.  I am currently cowering in a shallow trench that I managed to dig with my helmet before the worst of it came down.

Troops!  Troops!

I know I had some troops around here somewhere...

Here's the situation:  We have about as much verbal artillery as George Dubya without his nose-candy.  That's right; we're barely limping along. 

The plan is to accumulate some metaphors of our own so that we can fight back.  I'd prefer Metaphors Of Mass Imagery or, failing that, some of those Simile-Busters.

I don't normally do this, but desperate times call for desperate measures.  I'll even lyrics.

I'm counting on you, troops.


Whoa, that was close.  Oh man, I just wet myself.

I mean, um, that was an example of a metaphor.  You know.

Brian Y (from the International Comic Convention in San Diego):  "Michael Chabon is here at the Con."

Me:  "..."

I just bought a plane ticket.  Tomorrow afternoon, I'll be winging back to California.

It's nice having a job that can fund my whims.

Well, most of my whims, anyway.
"That tugged at my heartstrings like the inaugural voyage of an ocean liner that nobody remembered to untie from the dock."

-from The Metaphor Wars between Jaclyn and Guillermo.
(Yes, I know that's a simile.  That's probably why I'm losing.)
The Postal Service Blues

Maybe all the music I'm listening to is altering my mood.  After all, music does affect the moods of people.

I always think of a pot of boiling water on a stove.  Turn the right knob, transfer some heat energy, and the water starts rolling and bubbling.

With music, you spin the right record, transfer some sound energy and people start bouncing, flailing, shimmying, shouting along.

I don't think it really brings out anything that isn't already there, though.  I think it can build upon emotions that are already present in some form.

Throw some salt in a  pot of water and it needs more energy to get it boiling.

Throw a few experiences of injustice by the government into a crowd and it takes much less Rage Against The Machine to get them jumping.

I'm not sure what I'm talking about anymore, but for some reason I really want some pasta. 
"And I am finally seeing why I was the one worth leaving/"

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

"Pa, look out!  It's a monster on the ceiling!  I'll blast 'im good!"
"Relax there, son.  That's just what the folks around here call "air conditioning."
"I don't understand, Pa."
"You know how we're always sayin' 'Gawd, I wish it weren't so dang hot!'?"
"Well, son, with that there "air conditioning", it's like Gawds actually listenin'."
"Yer damn right 'Wow-eee'.  Now come on son, Ma needs a new Bowie knife."


It's interesting, though, that the majority of assault-style weapons are more likely to wound than to kill.

I'd much rather get shot by an M-16 than by a rifle designed to take down a moose.  I mean, I've been putting on a little weight, but I have a long way to go before I'm anywhere near moose-sized.

Hunting rifles (the nice legal ones you can buy once you're eighteen) are meant to bring down large game from farther away.

Assault-style rifles mostly just hurt you a whole helluva lot.

Guns that wound instead of kill are more effective in a combat situation for a few reasons.  A wounded enemy will need attention from another combatant, effectively removing two enemies, sometimes three, for one.

Once wounded, the enemy will still require the same resources as an enemy in fighting condition.  This depletes the resources of the enemy.

Also, seeing their buddies wounded brings down morale.

The Art of War by Sun Tzu.  Everyone should read that book.

I should probably mention that I'm all for gun control as long as there are no guns anywhere in the entire world.  Mostly, because I'm a very lousy shot.

Until that day.

Tuesday, July 20, 2004

"Where is there dignity unless there is honesty?" 
I must confess that I am not very happy with my last post.  I started out planning a sort of flashback, realized I didn't really want to put in the effort to build the mood I was trying to build, (plus I was annoying myself).  I debated scrapping the whole post, figured something was better than nothing,  then tried to wrap it up so that I could take a shower and go to sleep.
The results are as well as I expected. 
But, I have good writing news.  My good friend Brandon Becker has written a book.

I am immensely proud of him.

Seriously, have you ever tried to sit down and write an entire book? 

Life As A Dream be purchased through Barnes and Noble or Amazon.
Congratulations, B.

Monday, July 19, 2004

Sunday Morning.  Six AM.  Somewhere In The Sunset District of San Francisco.
The streets are empty as Phill and I walk back to the apartment.  The fog swirls to block our vision.  Porch light Will-O-Wisps line our gray path. 
I'm holding the remains of a bottle of gin and and a styrofoam container of some kind of eggplant dish.
Threads of fog mimic the haze across my own memory.  Phill and I had not been planning on doing anything particularly crazy. 
We climb over a chain-link fence and prepare to enter the heavily-wooded park, the final obstacle on our journey home.
I glance up at the trees, their upper branches sheathed in the mist. 
How did we end up here? 
All I had wanted from this night was some clam chowder in a sourdough bread-bowl...
Saturday Evening.  Nine PM.  Fisherman's Wharf.  San Francisco.
Phill, Megan, Will, and I sat down to eat in a restaurant by the bay.  I ordered a sourdough b0wl of clam chowder and subsequently was as happy as the aformentioned clams in said sourdough bowl.
After dinner, we strolled down the streets.  We padded out onto the small beach.  We looked out over the water and discussed the life, universe, and everything.  "Everything" for Phill and I was mostly scheming to steal a nearby, supposedly haunted pirate ship.
We made our way back to the parking area to retrieve the car.  As I was walking, I noticed a pretty girl walking towards us.  I tried to discretely check her out, but to my dismay I realized that she had stopped and was looking directly at me.  I felt my face flush and my mouth opened to stammer out an excuse when...

What?  The only people that ever call me "Will" know me from work or from...
It was Victoria.  From Arizona.  I'd taken three semesters of Italian class at MCC with her.  I hadn't spoken to her in about six months. 
Now, here we were, at Fisherman's Wharf, two mildly-intoxicated Italian students.
What are the odds of that?
She told me that she had moved here a just a few weeks ago.  It was her 21st birthday and she was just going out to celebrate.  "I can't believe I ran into you!" she exclaimed, "It must be Kismet!"
It'd been a while since I'd heard anyone give Kismet credit for anything.
"We're going down to the Condor tonight.  You should meet us there."
"Well, I'll have to see what Phill wants to do, but yeah, that sounds fun."
15 Minutes After Last Call, Speeding Away From The Condor Lounge
Phill and I were in an airport shuttle, heading back towards his apartment.  Victoria's roommate (the ironically named Christian) had essentially seduced the driver into moonlighting as our taxi.
She had settled for the airport shuttle after she had leaped onto a passing trolley.  She had made it down the block before the driver kicked her off.
Now, in the shuttle, Victoria and I sat and talked while Christian alternately ran around the bus, pole-danced, and accosted Phill. 
Megan and Will
At Phill's apartment, he had dashed in to grab some alcohol.  Then we headed towards Victoria's apartment. 
We hung out there for the rest of the evening.  At one point, a guy walked in all bloody and scraped.  Everyone there was glad to see him, and he introduced himself calmy as Eric.    
Then he went over to the sink and washed it all off.  He was an actor, and he had just been filming the riot scene of a movie. 
Later, Christian stole the gin and Phill's jacket and had ridden off on a bike.  She returned almost an hour later.  She still had the jacket but was missing most of the gin.
Phill and I stayed until a little before six am.  We opted to walk home.  I forget why, but I'm glad we did. 
I curled up to sleep at 6:30.  At nine am, I would meet Hagler for breakfast.  As tired as I was, I lay awake for some time before finally succumbing to sleep.

Sunday, July 18, 2004

Out Of The Sun And Into The Desert
I'm home.
I'm alive.
I'm very, very alive.