May 2010

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Everything is happening slower than I want it to.  I’m glad that I bumped the move up a week, because it’s taken a lot longer than expected.  There are still a few things left at the apartment that I need to pick up (I left my pictures hung because I didn’t have time to spackle the walls yet).

Just the move itself took twice as long as expected.  I do this thing right…. people, they usually assume I’m in my 20s.  I look young.  And sometimes I feel like I’m still in my 20s.  But after loading and unloading that truck several times this weekend, I felt like I was 50.  Despite having more muscle tone than I used to, I’m not the young buck I once was.

And now that I’m in the house, everything is taking forever.  My list of things I hope to get done this weekend is impossible:
– Reseal grout in kitchen
– Chop down branches in back yard
– Get the deck ready for company
– Get my lawn mower and mow the lawn
– Paint my basement
– Sort boxes and unpack more
– Hit up IKEA and put together some furniture
– Install CO detectors

Heck, I know there’s a bunch I’m forgetting.

I guess part of home ownership is learning to take things one step at a time.

Despite what sounds like griping there, I’m sleeping better than I have in months.  Oh speaking of sleeping, I now need to purchase a split box spring for my bed.  So there’s another thing to do this weekend.

And this is, of course, in addition to this weekend’s social events.

I guess we’ll see how it all goes.  One step at a time…

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So, I have no internets and I won’t have any internets until after the holiday.  This sucks.

Comcast guys refuse to work around branches, apparently.  Even when those branches are tiny.  They also refuse to let you climb their ladder to remove the branches yourself.

So I had to reschedule.  And this is a shit week for rescheduling, apparently.

Shit.

I can post at work here, but I try to avoid that when I can.  People can be dicks about internet usage at the office.

So there’s a whole crapload of stuff I want to do that I can’t do.  A few of them important.  Anyway, I might post on here a bit, but it looks to be a bit of a hiatus until summer proper.

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Sometime in the wee hours of the morning today, I marked the 33rd passing of my birth.  So, on this fine Thursday, I must wish a very happy birthday to me.  🙂

I’m feeling pretty good.  I’m buying a house tomorrow, so I guess I should.  It feels nice to move from this whatever, this sort of in-between phase that I’ve been in, to whatever’s coming next.  I guess I could be freaking out about at least a third of my life being over and done with, but I’m not.  The thirties are so much better than the 20s, and they’re far from over.  I’ve got a lot of good times in store.

I actually didn’t make any special plans this year, seeing as I’m moving tomorrow.  Usually I like a low-key day off with the girlfriend on my b-day, but since there’s no girlfriend in the picture this year I guess I’ll just toast some beers at the bar with a friend.  That and finish packing.

I’m overdue for a few musical posts–there’s so much good music out this spring–but I might not get to anything until after the move.  I’ve actually got a special blog project in mind for the near future.  I like keeping this page as my occassional journal, but I’ve got an idea for something featuring regular updates that I think will be fun.  Those of you who know me will register zero surprise when you see it.  I’m hoping to have it ready come mid summer.  Maybe July.  I have to make a few decisions on how to set it up, not just page-wise, but possibly business-wise.  We’ll see. 

Anyway, happy Thursday everyone!  I hope yours is as bitchin’ as mine is.

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Dear, Asshole Who Rifled through my Car Last Night,

Thank you.  Thank you, well first, for not taking anything.  Yes, you found nothing of value in the car.  I could, perhaps should, stand upon my soapbox here and upbraid you for not even taking a moment to look through the mound of CDRs, the absolute wealth of music, days and days of it if played end to end–I could lambast you for the ignorant musical taste that lead you to so quickly pass up a horde of treasures.  You had your pick.  No one (apparently) was watching.  I could not even have found myself angry if a thief had broken into my car only to purloin the most choice album in the deck.  The CD might as well be a loaf of bread, in my mind.

But no, you took nothing.  Because, of course as a city boy, I keep nothing of value in an unattended car.  But I shouldn’t really be thanking you for not taking what was not yours.  And I’m not even going to thank you for putting most of my stuff back after you’d pawed through it.

My thank you is a little more nuanced than that.

You see, asshole thief man, sometimes I feel paranoid.  Well, not literally paranoid, but I feel like I’m acting paranoid.  I check the lock on that car door often.  Very often.  More often than I do most things, when you consider it.  If I come and go from the car two to three times a day, that’s four to six times (or more) that I’ve double checked the lock.  That’s more than I floss or brush my teeth.  I have one of the little clickers, like most people, and I “click click” “click click” until I am beyond certain that the car is secure.

But last night, oh last night.  I don’t have to tell you, my asshole thief man friend.  You know.  I even remember, as I was walking in, my arms draped with empty boxes, I remember asking myself, “did I lock the door?”  The keys were in my pocket, I’d have to put everything down again to check it.

“No, of course you locked the door. ” I said to myself, “You always lock the door.”

As you discovered, this was a mistake.

But as mad as I am at you–and I am fucking mad at you–I can only take it so far.  Because you, by finding my humble unlocked car the one time I left it unlocked, you have reminded me that I am not paranoid after all.  I am not some crazy person, fearful of the unruly hordes waiting in the shadows for me to turn my back, if only momentarily.

No, I am merely engaging in what my computer nerd friends would call “best practices.”

So thank you for that, Mr Asshole Thief Man Who Rifled through my Car Last Night.  I needed the reminder.

–CS

PS: I hope you got ran over by a car as you were fleeing my neighborhood after your spree.

PPS: And not just run over, but run over by a half asleep truck driver who didn’t hear the bump, and who dragged you for two miles before you flopped off of the fender into some ditch.

PPPS: And not just any ditch, but a rat and were-dog infested ditch, where you were slowly eaten alive by vile rats and were-dogs, which as you know, resemble dogs but eat their prey like a fly does, by vomiting corrosive bile upon your face and licking it up.

PPPPS: But as you know vile rats and were-dogs will not consume everything, so you were of course still alive come daybreak.  With just enough left in you to see the crows and gizzard necked vultures swoop down to pluck out your beady eyes.

PPPPPS: And also your testicles.

PPPPPPS: And then I hope you got run over again.

PPPPPPPS:  Asshole.

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So, I was having some beers at the bar with a friend of mine this weekend, and he posed this question to me. “Are you happy?” Although, he definitely did mean it in a general sense, it was presented within a context. We were talking about dating. My friend is living the settled down coupled life, while I’m living the single bachelor’s life. Most of my friends are settled down into a relationship these days, so this exact contrast pops up often.

And so we were kind of going back and forth about our respective lifestyles, and he just asked me. “Well… are you happy?”

The answer is yes. Yeah, totally, but that’s not really the point I’m looking for.

I sometimes wonder about people’s need to be in a relationship. I remember being younger and feeling that need, sometimes feeling it with a crushing weight, and I remember being so miserable at those times. That’s not to say that I haven’t experienced the upshot of those feelings: the intense love and intimacy of another person. But looking back on those younger days, I see myself so out of balance. Swinging from one extreme to another.

My friend was asking the question out of general, genuine curiosity. It wasn’t a loaded question or anything. But sometimes I wonder what people think. They’re all settling down. I mean pretty soon most of them will be married, and half of them will have kids. And here I am, single as they come. What the hell’s going on with this guy, you know?

I guess one could take the “the 30s are the new 20s” attitude and embrace it. I’ve no desire to relive my 20s, so I’m not particularly fond of that adage. But on the flip side, when I think about settling down and having kids and stuff, that’s definitely not something I want in my life right now. I mean, the neighborhood I’m moving into, it’s all young parents. I will be glad to stand out as the young single guy in that crowd.

But what gets me about the whole settling down thing, is that I’m bothered by the notion that happiness can only come to someone who’s settled into a long term relationship. A marriage, generally. You have to be married to be happy. Nevermind my pro-monogamy-but-anti-marriage friends, who hate that marriage dogma. I’m just talking any kind of LTR. You have to be with someone to be happy.

Well, do we? I’m not so sure about that. In fact, I think that if you can’t be happy with just yourself, then how good can your marriage really be? I’m a child of divorce, and I watched both of my parents find themselves in their second marriages. Not their first. In the first marriage, my parents had no idea who they were as people. And I mean, not to sound like the asshole cynic, but among people getting married right now, how many of those marriages are going to last? I know that when I finally settle down and get married, the prospects are going to be good. But that’s because I wanted to wait on that. I wanted to be happy with me before I even considered being happy with an “us.”

So can one be happy being single in their early thirties? Hell yes. It can be freakin’ awesome.

Now. All of that said, though, I am looking forward to being able to date normally when my life settles down in a few weeks. Part of the truth here is that I’ve been too pre-occupied with work lately to really even be available. I don’t want to keep that up. I guess we’ll see how that goes. Hell, I just might have a date set up for this week, even, which is probably not a very good idea, but oh well. I need to get out of my apartment full of boxes at some point.

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I had this moment with Carrie Brownstein a few weeks ago.  I was listening to All Songs Considered’s spring music preview and she said something about The National that really got me.  The preview show is one of my favorites because it’s the ASC crew just hanging out and nerding out about music for about an hour and a half.  Does an hour and a half sound like along time for a podcast?  It is.  The podcast is that awesome.  I like conversational podcasts of that nature, where one can play voyeur to a conversation of like minds, the kind of conversation one could hop in and out of effortlessly.

And anyway, well they came to the part where one of them (Robin?) was playing a preview off of High Violet, The National’s new one.  And Carrie expressed some reticence.  The song was amazing, she admitted, but she wasn’t sure if she would be able to love High Violet the way that she loved Boxer.  Her relationship with Boxer had been too intimate.  Too intense.  And no matter how great the new album might be, it just couldn’t be the same to her.  There was a moment with Boxer that could be neither undone nor repeated.

I had that same moment with Alligator.  So it was hard for me to get into Boxer.  I’ve been trying lately, but it’s sort of half-hearted.  I’d even concede that Boxer is a better album.  The songs tighter, the polish smoother.  But I just can’t quite feel it.

So it’s with a bit of trepidation that I’m listening to High Violet right now over at NPR.  You can stream the whole thing here.  It’s awesome.  Incredible.  But I just don’t know how I feel.

This is something that I love most about music though.  The ability to have that indelibly intimate moment with a song.  Or an album.  Even on the most remote desert island across the farthest ocean, one can feel a human connection that is positively singular.

And then, later on, when you’ve returned from the desert island, moved on to some next phase in your life, these new songs come along.  I’d compare it to a relationship: it’s like dating someone who looks just like an ex, has most of the same interests, even the same first name.  There’s always going to be something there preventing them from being to you what the first was.  Even if they’re better than the first.

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