Misanthropic Meanderings

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Location: California, United States

See the title? There you go.

Sunday, June 25, 2006


Once again, I have inked our strip. It's only 3 weeks late. Nobody got hurt-much-, nobody got killed. All in all, I say it's a success.

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Breakfast at 9am

There we are, sharing an omelette of tomatoes, chilis and mushrooms neatly divided by his hand, a row of tabasco sauce forming a crimson line between one portion and the other. We talk, first of one thing, then of another. The day's hoped for accomplishments are listed, commented on and dismissed. Curiosity, or the devil, prick me, so I ask on love.

"What do you think?"

"Unnn, hunh?"

"This doesn't seem strange to you?"

"Omelette seems fine, filling is kinda loose, though.

"No. I mean think, about it. At our advanced age, who thinks about starting all over again? Where exactly do we fit in out here?"

"Yeah, I see what you mean. I am, in my office, exactly in the middle. There are some younger people, most are older. But most are married, they have kids, people have houses, mortgages-"

"-We have the cat-"

"-Pretty much. I look younger, I am not married, no kids, the most I have is a car payment and there's rent. There's not a lot in common with my age group."

"By now I thought I'd be in the middle of some adult life, with a career. I didn't see the mom thing, but here we are and we're thinking about what? Dating? I never dated!"

"I did and didn't. I've been proposed to 3 times, I've been engaged twice-including you-but that's it. I'm skeptical. See this eyebrow, it goes up like DesCartes in his picture. I am that skeptical about what people do. I never picked anyone up. I never went on the hunt. It's not me. I met people, we were drawn together, we went out, we did things that people together do, the relationship ran it's course and we went through the painful breakup process."

"See, there it is. I've done even less. I feel like I'm back at 16, trying to figure out what opposite sex even means. Men my age often seem old, men younger are too young. You and our friends are the only adults I know with similar tastes. Now, let's say we even get to that point. We go even further, we find people we like, we go out, we get all the way up to kissing and... BANG! We have to get naked with new people again."

"Ha, yeah, that was something. I thought about that. So what?"

"We did all that before, why do we have to do it again?!" I just don't know if I can go out, make friends, find someone I'm interested in who's interested in me and then go get naked with somebody new."

"I'm one up on you there. I'm a guy, women already have body issues, I don't, so I start with one huge confidence block. Not that I don't share your concerns."

"You're only hanging around to save yourself from dating."

"Yeah. I'm not interested in anybody from here. I'm supposed to go for anorexic white girls? No."

"You're not hoping I re-fall for you and just stay with you?"

"Is that so bad?"

"Is it? I don't know. Familiarity is nice. but after 14 years, all I know is I love you and that isn't enough for a relationship to work. Wouldn't it, by now? We dealt with it and moved on. Not quickly but we're kinda slow to accept new things or, in this case, people."

"Yeah. Having more tea?"


Why we, of all two people, of all two friends, discuss love with each other is beyond me.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

I Don't Get

Lava lamps. How do they get stuff into it, why is it fascinating?

Black Light-how did we figure out that in combo with flourescent colours would work? What is "black light" anyway?

Why does NYC seem so well laid out and almost every other place in CA seem so haphazard and crafted with only cars in mind? Scratch that one, I think I get it.

Are all women's magazines an adventure in self-hate and profligate spending? Do we not get enough criticism why these things exist? And why are men joining us on this band wagon? Hey, doodmeister, she won't love you more because you have a six pack & 2% body fat. GO FUCKING EAT A COOKIE. And quit using "product". Over 20 years of hanging with queers and not once did they ever use the term product. Take a hot shower, moisturize, eat healthy and take some exercise. Actually go on a program and you lose any attractiveness you might have had. That goes for men and women.

Tank tops in XXL. Spandex shorts & miniskirts over size 16. Ladies & gentlemen, well constructed garments are your friend. You don't have to go hijab, but leave us a little mystery. Please. I beg you.

The Law of White Garments Attraction to Red Objects. Even if you avoid eating italian, using a red pen, touching red paper, something red and stainy will touch you and spoil your clothes. This is a proof of evil existing.

Headcheese. Does it even sound appetizing? I don't want to know what's in it.

Fluffernutter. Mayo. White bread. See post on headcheese.

Men. They are crazy.

Women. See entry re: men.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Mea Culpa

I dread this. It just looms on my conciousness, a giant, unavoidable horror. Every year I participate in a lie.

So there we are, two people forced by circumstance to inhabit these roles. We are not father and daughter. We are hardly aquaintances. For most of my life, "polite disinterested members of a household", was perhaps the barest whisper of correct. Words are far too pretty to convey the situation correctly.

He had married my mum, the official claimant. I was born to her, the prior claimant. I suppose one of us had to cling to her and attack the interloper. Odd how it turned out to be the adult acting childish. He broke my toys, he'd schedule family trips and not invite me, he'd not talk to me for days on end. Now it's funny, a big, grown man running back and forth, beating his chest over someone who couldn't understand what he was on about if you paid me. Back then it was distressing. I strove to be a better child. The amount of bible waving prayer intercessions over me, led by my mum and the other women of the family, to beg the Lord to...


Do something O Blessed Lord, so the big male crafted in thy image thou hast allowed our sister to marry may be appeased with this fallen child. Amen.

"Amen", I fervently agreed, being congenitally wrong is hard, "please just amen, if you love me Father"...

And so it went, until I went, aided by him taking the door off my room. Time to go, indeed.

Funny thing about being gone, it gives you different perspectives. I had never seriously considered that parents could be wrong. Or even seriously apeshit, goatraping crazy in that quiet way that never hits the papers but does make all the art. But I called, still. Always. I never called to talk to them as people, I just pose as *Daughter*so they can be *Mom & Dad*.

Pas de deux:
Yes, 2, 3, laugh, 2, 3, Uhhuh, 2, 3, Really, 2, 3 and then something banal about my life. repeat x 15. Bow, hang up.

On the phone, I know my stepfather more than I know my mother. He's more talkative than I ever thought possible for a sullen, angry stoneface. We both like politics and cold Red Stripe with hot patties. We love city excitement but pine about clear skies and country living. I can like him. There's just one thing stopping me from making this a story of warm cuddly, reconciliation. Nobody's ever asked for forgiveness. The past never happened and we were always a close happy family. We've raised denial to it's ultimate form.

They ask for pictures and want to come spend holidays. My skin crawls off my body and under a safe rock at that. Who are these people? Did I miss the rewrite of our history? My sainted grandmother apologized to me for the whole situation. It was a long million pounds of words in a roundabout islander way with 2 ounces of actual "I'm sorry", but it darn near knocked me out. But I'm not being asked to forgive, I'm expected to move from one reality to another and I find it harder and harder to pretend I can go along with it.

I panic each Parental Glorification Day, dreading phone call hell. I can't remember if this year I sent a dad's gift or a card or what did I do? Did I do anything? What do I say? It's always blank, like last year slipped down a crevasse or got tossed out in the trash. The major holidays have enough bullshit in them that I can force something out. But these days that celebrate the 'special parental bond'...pure torture.

Do I...say what I think? Demand a little acknowledgement of estrangement? Give in to my ideals of truth and justice?

I pick up the phone.
I think about all the times I chewed out my friends for whining about their very human, imperfect parents.
I think about the fact that I really, really wanted a set of my very own when I lived in Jamaica.
"Mom" and "Dad" weren't meant as cursewords.
I pick up the fucking phone.

And I lie. Word, tone and demeanor-all lies. For the good of two people I may not love, but I have compassion for. My choice and still I don't know if it's the right thing or not. There should be a moratorium on these days. Until family life can be a bit less fucked.

Saturday, June 10, 2006

2 Notes On Love

"She" doesn't want to hang with him because when he looks at her, his eyes are transparent. She can see his passion for her, passion she wishes weren't there. I have nothing to say to her. Honestly, I have lots to say.

I could say, "be upfront. make sure he understands you like him as a friend, but as a lover it isn't going to happen". Really, I think or I'd like to think, she's already done that.

I could say, "is it so bad, to be loved? seriously, why do you talk to him and give him time if that little reflection of yourself wasn't pleasing? let him love you, bask in it. even if it isn't the "right" guy, the attractive one, what's so wrong about being loved and offering at least a friendly love in return?" When you're as young as she is, you don't worry too much about never seeing that look again. You also don't believe that person, that ideal person who looks in your eyes, creating a circuit of passion that ties you two together, will ever stop loving you. You'll look and look, but there'll be no more reflections of you living in him.

Nope, I just mumble something noncommital. If she wants to know she can ask outright. She's young, she knows everything anyway.


"Why would he take her back? I mean, she was SO mean to him when they broke up. So mean. Yet, he took her back. I don't get it."

I shrug, this is a simple question. "She's hot."

The pest takes this moment to enter and jackrabbit around us on either a caffeine, cocaine or pure immature male hormone kick. He stops to nod a ballistic yes and proceeds to jump up and down behind my friend, using her shoulders to propel himself higher than usual.

"No. Like, the fact that she's good looking would, like, excuse how mean she was? No way. I mean, he's all, like 'she completes me' kinda thing. I just don't get it."

Shaking my head, I contemplate being detailed. Fuck it. "She's hot. He's a guy. No matter how bad she treated him, as long as she didn't, like, fuck his bro, his dad and all his friends, he'd take her back and thank her. If she was truly, totally hot and rich, she could do all that and he'd still take her back."

"But she's so mean! Why does he take back someone who dumped him, trashtalked and treats him badly?"

I slide my arm around her soft shoulders and rest my head against hers. The pest bounces off us some more, then mimics my position on her other side. "Baby, you sound like a girl who's hung out with boys but hasn't been paying attention."

"Well, gay guys. They're more like girls."

"See, if a girl is hot, it makes a guy feel better about himself. If a girl is great but not hot, no ego boost, he can take or leave her. When he has a hot girl, she adds to his caché. She treats him crappy but returns, oh yeah, she completes him alright-ego points. Hot equals free meanie pass. Hotter the girl, the crappier she can be and he'll still take her back."

The pest bounces around, his entire body twitching in agreement. "You should listen to her. She knows guys." He knocks her on the head, I punch him in the gut. and chase him out the door. All she can do is shake her head in disbelief.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Boomerang Kids

I am very excited. One of my kids is coming back to visit next week. I can't wait to see him! Ok, he's not my kid in the squoze him out sense. In fact, at 24, he's hardly a kid. However, as part of the elite group called "people who seem to call me for advice all the time", I feel this maternal mentorship thingy for him. What can I say? I'm not much for unbidden advice but some of my younger pals actually ask me for stuff like I'm all smart and stuff. Haven't they been listening to my fart and sex laden jokes? Did they see me with the funny hats? Does public Riverdancing mean nothing to these people?

Between David & Shaun (my kids), I feel so much more accomplished in my life. Their successes have nothing to do with me, all I provide is some experience and logic. I meet these guys at various jobs, see that they're funny, smart and passionate about what they want to do and make sure I give as much as I can to their efforts. It's more emotionally rewarding than cash, although cash would be pretty darn neat right now. Shaun came back earlier this year and she'd landed a bigtime magazine position. Not too shabby for my former intern. David just called last night to tell me the movie project we discussed months ago had taken Best in Show at the student film fest for his school. Very darn cool.

I'm all busting out with the pride for these two and when they call me to let me know how things are going, I marvel at how great it feels for me. They ask what I've been up to, I get to tell my good stuff happening, sometimes for the first. Not to sound macabre, but it seems so important to them that I be here, around. Keeps my destructive side mollified because I couldn't disappoint them. I've been wondering if I shouldn't get a talented young intern to help us out with the strip and the upcoming animation. Maybe I miss talking about light, form, art and technology to some eager young space cadet.

I don't mind the teaching and coaching and late night calls to my cell to play soundboard. I just keep sending them out there; wonder of wonders, they keep coming back.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Oh so beautiful

I am in pain. Not a good, Ai Papi, sí, mas, kinda pain. That would be worth it. This is more of a "may have overdone it or need more stretching" pain that's making me hurt every time I throw a roundhouse kick. I know, 'so don't throw a roundhouse kick, duh'. But then I couldn't do my second workout of the day. I'd be lost.

Workouts are some funny modern thing we do to make up for not hunting or gathering and eating twinkies. I do a lot of them. It's funny that people think I'm doing it for something like beauty. Beauty is a funny thing to chase. It's too damned ephemeral to be defined, but we sure do know what physical beauty is when we see it. All that physical beauty can be lost if the personality underneath that lovely exterior is petty, small and evil. No amount of surgery or injections can change that.

We get all the lessons from childhood about "not judging a book by it's cover" and "it's what's on the inside that counts". Let's be frank here, that's total bullshit. The easier you are on the eyes, the more often you get better treatment. It's a goal with a lot uses but the corollary of that is written on the overstretched, botoxed faces of formerly beautiful women who are fighting age and wear with every known surgical trick known to man. Who are they if they aren't beautiful? Will they ever get to be special again? I feel strangely sympathetic for their losses. I mean, I work hard, fighting to climb up the career ladder, so setbacks are no big surprise for me. That has to come as a shock.

Beautiful people work hard at it. I think it means a lot more to them than it would to me. There's so much effort at clothes and hair and maintenance. And I'm not just talking about the girls. Real, straight men discuss hair gel, Bebe's new spring line and how much they ate that day, I can certify it. Unfortunately, I immediately became ultra bitchy on the grounds that I'd rather piss everyone off than be forced to hang out with them again. It's just too much effort to focus on achieving this crazy thing called beauty. All so other people can tear you apart looking for flaws? Nuh-uh! Pfft, in that case, I'd lie on a sofa all day eating lemon curd donuts.

So why do I workout and eat so much healthy crap? When I'm 80, I want to drive my own car, walk as much as I feel like, & still swing a mean kendo sword. The drooling, self-stooling modern aging thing looks sucky. I'll take some pain now, if it means everything will work until it doesn't have to.

Monday, June 05, 2006


Well, blessed be! Is it really voting time again? Shooooot. I don't envy all you citizens and registered voters out there. Voting, especially midterm elections, is a long boring slog through adverts, millions of smiling people pressing printed crap into your hands, and annoying phone calls. By the time the election rolls around, not only are you sick of everyone, you don't know what the hell the issues are because there's been too much stuff to read. Good luck no matter what you choose. The only thing I have to say is please get off your lazy duffs and vote. Pull a lever, punch a hole, press something on screen (sorry about the papertrail thingy), just go vote. Pick a paper you respect and go with their recommends if you must. It's the one damn time you have a real say in local to federal level government. It's bloody important. Perspective point, the next American Idol cannot, CANNOT, nuke Iran or affect federal abortion law. The next governor or senator, can.

Wake up tomorrow, wipe that crusty stuff off your face, and decide to vote. Preferably that morning. As a noncitizen, I thank you for that. Even if I don't agree with you.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

More on the Gawd thing

Interesting. A friend, a rather young friend, has jumped the christian ship. After much personal thought, soul & scripture searching, she's decided to pass on the lifelong christian faith indoctrination and say howdy to tha Allah in her. Amazing. I can't say her choice would be mine, mind you, I've been down that road and it pretty much led me to paganity-"Bringing you virgin born God-men since before we started counting"-as far away from ME nomad thundergod religions as possible. In fact, I can't begin to consider changing one system of belief for the other. I go from at least being free and not female in heaven after death, even with the whole being saved only through childbirth and submission and the period curse thingy to not even bing mentioned in the afterlife. And as I suspected afterlife could mean winding up being one of the eternal virgins-reread that, "eternal" virgins, do you want to be deflowered all eternity? No thanks.-that plus the heavy burka signals no.

Oddly enough, great civilising elements came from Muslim countries. Concepts such as zero, number systems, female writers of great wit and candor, amazing art, medical advances long before europe stopped applying shit poultices to everything, all courtesy of Arabs who were largely muslim. Christians have done great things too, once we stopped slaughtering Muslims, Jews, and the doctrinally incorrect Christians. Science was embraced by all as providing the best explanation for how the world works, causing textbooks to be created since "because the deity dood it" was out of favour. Leaving humanity all to the better, since we can kill now for resources, political ideologies and whatever our peerless leaders think up.

Hm. Maybe that's why there's been a resurgence in hardcore fundamentalism. We got all enlightened, entered the age of reason and what did we get out of it? Better ways to kill and a lousy t-shirt. Ok, Macs and ipods, those are fucking awesome. Along with the Lord of the Rings. Totally worth it. But I digress. You'd think progress in understanding would be a universal thing, but, um, no. Progress in mechanical understanding isn't metaphysical understanding. I don't know why we can come up with fuel injection but can't do anything about prejudice. But is the answer a return to a rather mythological good old days philosophy, where we were supposedly better people? It's often like the entire world is trapped being a pushmepullyou, one side trying to gain more tech, more knowledge and the other side heading for some good old day that never really existed. We can off more people and damage everything on a massive scale, the ancient world had some of the most horrific methods or torture and death. Blood eagle, anyone?

I live in an America where gay marriage-which existed in both christian and pre-christian cultures- is being banned from state to state and people are actually trying to make banning it Constitutional! Wow, hating as part of the Constitution. A rich man is attempting to build a purely catholic town. Everyone who comes in will have to subscribe to a very rigid form of Catholic belief. Does he really think this will make for a pure, loving existance? Maybe someone should avail him of the gang wars between Byzantine's christians, another pure of faith city. Where is the deep, internal and personal thought that makes a religion worthwhile? Not this crazy, us vs them, 'I win, I'm right' psycho nonsense.

A young lady bucking training and family pressure to adopting a faith that speaks to you is the only example of real piety I need. It takes tremendous courage to put on a head covering-the most visible symbol of a belief system that's not popular-and face potentially negative reactions. And the fact that she's doing it for herself, not a boy she likes, not to get into heaven, or get something from god or to get votes. It's because she read the book, thought about it, questioned herself and then did the most miraculous thing of all. The free will thing. She made a choice. That's something to respect. Very few people of any faith doing respectable stuff these days. I gave her a hug and commended her on her choice.

Yeeah, I know, misanthropic my pink fuzzy ass. I can't be cranky all the time.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Work Pest Update

I love my little workmates, even my pesty one. The latest form of torment I've done is hiding every important possession he has on his desk. They're all in his filing cabinet-which he never looks into. A fun one was putting his name tag in the garbage can, under the translucent plastic, thank you. He spent a good half hour before he had to beg me to tell where it was. Between that and the new shoulder bruises I gave him, my honour is totally restored.

Get back to your lives now.

Such Lovely Green Eyes

I'm dealing with the strangest thing.

Someone is jealous of me. Now, those of you scanning this in passing don't know me, so you might think I'm a raging egomaniac for saying that. Hell, people who do know me rather well would find that odd. People being jealous of me is not something that happens except as a potentiality, IMO. So why would I think that there's a case of the green eyes being caused by me? Well, little birds have brought news of some really vitrolic comments being made re: me. To be correct, this person isn't just jealous, they've got tons of other issues too. It's the latest focus on specific things about me and my relationships that cued me into what might be going on with them. Not that it wasn't something I'd noticed before. I was hoping to avoid being a target by avoiding her, but some people are train wrecks looking for a crash site.
Strange as hell.

You just don't know why people react the way they do. There are elements of empathy that can almost make it seem like you know, but you don't really. Everyperson's life is filled with interpretations, feelings, & concepts that will be unique to them. They can share their living space with others, talk to friends, have lovers but that internal landscape will be theirs alone to tread. The fun part is, whatever you don't like about yourself, is all you'll ever believe anyone else is saying to you.

What will I do? Nothing, I can't say it doesn't bug me because well, hell, let someone smear you and see how good it feels. I'm fucking human. But I also have to admit that the rantings of the delusional are often amusing, despite my humanist nature. There's also a little bit of marvel. How many times do you get to be the figure of envy? When your life is a slogfest of work, work and then work-an' I'm talkin' 'bout mine-it doesn't feel very enviable. It just seems hard. What's the point of envy anyway? Normalcy seems enviable, simple basic things like home, family, & love are worth fighting for. Friendlier, smarter, cooler, prettier, whateverer-that's rather pointless to pick fights over. It's all so subjective that any reason you may feel to pick over that can only make those huge, gaping inadequacies that caused those feelings get even bigger. Jealousy makes people do ugly things, things that will change their relationships. Maybe permanently.

That does it for me. I prefer to get my feelings and quibbles out and inflect them on innocent passersby (hello!). Nothing noble about it, I just need all my energy for creative pursuits and videogames. Passions are better spent on things that make you feel good. Or at least me feel good.

Thursday, June 01, 2006


Somedays, home isn't enough.

You want to get up in a strange bed, smell different aromas, hear another tongue. Where does it come from? Why can't you just wake up each day, feel good about what's ahead of you and come back to your comfy life without feeling unrest? Maybe I shouldn't use the global "you", it might just be me. Today on the way back from my morning walk, the sonoma hills really stood out against the pale blue of the sky. No haze today, so you could see the little dots of scrub on the pale brown earth. For a moment, I wished I could get over to them. Take a decent hike, maybe some decent photos, explore a bit. If only I had, say, a car and a map. Working at multiple businesses has taken a lot of my time but that's not what keeps me in so much. Who needs sleep? This is just more fun with someone else. Not saying I haven't taken off for a bit by myself and had a decent time, just that I like to blaze a trail with a trailbuddy.

I spent most of my trip in through the islands by myself and it was good. Trucking over Berkeley for pagan fests or film shoots, good. Wandering Arizona, good. Road trip with entire family of friend, GOD I WISHED I WAS ALONE-I mean, an interesting good... Right now, I'm dedicated to trying to build something for myself. It takes a lot of sacrifice to make a business work, even more when it's an art related business. But right now, if one of my friends (car-owning ones) said "let's go shovel horseshit in Yreka, spelunk over in the old mines of gold country and freeze our asses off watching whales in Monterey", I'd be packed before 'let's' turned into 'go'.

We used to have a term called "gypsy feet" for people who always like to be somewhere else. In fact, I got an anointing and a demon chasing ceremony to cure me from that. No, I won't ever tell you about that. It didn't seem to work. My friends here are comfortable, quite settled. My ex is a total homebody and our weekends are all work. I guess for now I can look at the hills and think "if I could just fly...". At least for a little while.