Friday, February 29, 2008

All Lost in the Supermarket

Sometimes the place I feel the most foreign in this world is the grocery store. I want so badly to be fluent in the language of taste, but instead I stand there looking at 86 different kinds of rice thinking "What the fuck is 'Basmati'?" I cook no-frills, and hence I eat like a hostage. Some days, I like to pretend this is part of some great existentialst suffering, like I have too much on my plate to care what the broccoli tastes like - "People are dying, man!" But in reality, its simply an acknowledgement that I have waaaaaay too many Monkees songs to track down to really give that much thought to what I'm putting in my body.

I've eaten badly for just about as long as I've been cooking for myself. One of these days, I'm going to start renting young children to put in my grocery cart so that when people look down at my purchases, I can just point at him/her and shake my head, laughing, as if to say, "Lady, do you really think I 'm buying all these little Gatorades for myself? And who but a child would buy two boxes of Bacon Better Cheddars when they're not even on sale? And the Fruit Gushers?! Fuckin' kids today!" Then I'll make a big show of asking my rented child why he really needs all three boxes of Cinnamon and Brown Sugar Pop-Tarts.

But I have gotten alot better over the years. I remember the first time I successfully made an omelet that didn't look like it had already been half-digested - I was so proud of myself, you would have thought I cracked the fucking Rosetta Stone. I almost didn't want to eat it. For Christmas this year, I dropped $40 of grandmom's hard-earned money on a Bible-sized vegetarian cookbook, with the goal being to learn how to make two new dishes per week without making myself sick. I cracked it open just long enough to learn that "real" scrambled eggs are supposed to take 25 minutes to cook, and that I'd have to forfeit valuable spatula space to build a spice collection big enough to cook anything the proper way (and I have some primo spatulas, my friend). Needless to say, it quickly became entombed on the top of my dresser, beneath my St. Jude candle and the Christmas card my mom sent me from the dogs.

So for now, my cooking advancements are measured in inches. Why, just yesterday I discovered that if you use cinnamon toast to make fried peanut-butter-and-banana sandwiches, its pretty bad-ass. But don't use rye bread unless its just one of those weeks.

Save that shit for grilled cheese.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Things Neil Young Might Eat

- Plastic
- Ewoks
- Sand
- Lightning
- Too much birthday cake

Thursday, February 21, 2008

"If you want the rainbow, you've gotta put up with the rain - do you know which philosopher said that? Dolly Parton. And people say she's just a big pair of tits." -David Brent

Thursday, February 7, 2008

"...were at one time it's most hopeless romantics."

Hoy Hoy Gentle Reader,

The title of this blog comes from a quote I distinctly remember coming across during my high school days; in fact, I've been attributing it to Ambrose Bierce ever since, as though there's some nugget of memory hidden upstairs that at one time or another made me absolutely certain of this fact. Unfortunately for me, Google's never heard of it, so either I made it up or the piper has finally come to collect his due for all those years of self-medication. Probably a little of a) and a little b).

Whoever said it, I happen to like it, and it's a thought that's kept me company in the depth of many a misunderstanding. I can identify with the idea of the cynic as being someone who's not out to discourage all around him/her out of a defect of personality, but rather as someone whose too great hopes and too fragile nature have conspired to create, at periods, a very agitated soul. OK, so maybe it does sound like a Conor Oberst pick-up line; my first cat was named Gobo and I actively tried to convince my parents to change my middle name to "Butch" when I was six years old - I'm clearly not cut out for naming things. My future children better hope my future wife is a woman with ideas.

Two-thousand-seven was a banner year for me; so much so, that 2008 has felt straight pedestrian so far. Milestones were a'plenty in The Year of the Pig - I left my day job at a non-profit/government agency after three years, with approximately 13% of my idealism intact; I moved out of my long-time apartment - one whose roof and deck I will be missing like hell in a few months - and into the swankest digs I've yet to lay my head (not that that's saying much, but still...); I saw large swaths of this country from the bench seat of a van, and met great people just about everywhere we went; I narrowly escaped eviseration via samurai sword; I made out with a girl for three consecutive hours (pro and con); and I reaped the benefits of gainful unemployment for six months, during which time my daily regimen consisted of bong hits, blueberry pancakes, Walt Whitman and long walks. By the time December rolled around, I sure as shit was sad to the see the year end.

But more importantly than all that, 2007 saw a marked increase in "me time," where, by the process of mental triangulation, I tried to figure out exactly where I was standing most times. I did alot of thinking. I did alot of re-thinking. I did alot of writing. I threw alot of that writing out. I tried to learn the difference between "valuable" and "invaluable." I did alot of staring at Christmas lights and stop lights and the few stars one can see through the Baltimore smog and tried to imagine myself as a beam of light making its way out to everyone around me. I wondered what I meant by that. The whole thing felt like pulling off an old scab thats clearly not protecting anything any longer, and letting the new, pink flesh soak in the air.

And now we've got The Year of The Rat, and I'm excited to put my new-found theories to the test. Then I'll know whether I'm totally full of shit or not.

But I don't reckon this space will be a bleeding heart parade too much; I'm still too uptight for that. If anything, this will be a respository of half-baked musings, which are still awesome because maybe you can still taste the batter and thats the best part of the cake anyway. I'm sure alot of it will be band shit because that takes up an ungodly portion of my time, plus its something I'd really like to write about. It might also be about my search for a money-making venture of some kind because I have 10 days of unemployment left as of this writing. Maybe its time to finally get that professional parallel-parking career off the ground?

Over and out...

PS - Will some male cat of the neighborhood please do something about this puss-in-heat thats been hanging in the alleyway for the last week? One more night of this, and I'm going to fuck that cat myself.

Listening to: Ben E. King and The Drifters