Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Nose Job

Today, I had a really long tube up my nose. I think it tapped my brain. Seriously, I had no idea how much room was up there. I kept thinking about that episode of The Simpsons when Homer removed the crayon he had stuck up his nose and became smart. Or something. I can't really remember. Maybe it's the tube.

Anyway, it was determined that I have a deviated septum, which basically means my nose is crooked. Now, I need a CAT scan to determine if anything else is awry up there and from there, doctors can figure out a course of action, most likely a nose job. Hey, it worked for Jennifer Anniston.

I'm trying to figure all this out. On the one hand, I've always had trouble breathing out of my nose and people always ask if I have a cold when I don't because my voice has always been weird and nasal-y. On the other hand, this seems like a lot of time and energy spent on a nose. To my knowledge, I don't snore (And who would care if I did?) and I've managed 33 years this way, so why should I bother? I suppose there are reasons. I don't want to be referred to as a mouth-breather, for one. Also, I think that always breathing through your mouth at night can cause dry-mouth and be bad for your gums. And maybe it will be better for the podcast if I don't sound like someone is constantly squeezing my nose. John said it changed his life.

God knows, I could use some change.

So, this one is a little obvious...

I may have skewed the results a little, but who else would I be? Penguin?

Wednesday, May 13, 2009


I guess idle hands do often do the devil's work.

Lately, my job has entered a slow period, and I have had a lot of time to do nothing. It's fantastic. But, in my solitude, I have long-pondered this question: is it possible to be kind of an atheist? I brought it up a little in my last post, and it got me thinking a little.

I used to say I was agnostic, and that seeing was believing. I'm starting to think that being agnostic is sort of a cop-out. Like, "I just don't know about this, but that God story seems fishy." I really think that claiming to be agnostic was just me not committing to yet another aspect of life. It's a drawback of being passionless and basically dead inside. You can't even commit to not believing in something.

But I think I'm ready to take a stand here. I don't believe there is a God. I don't believe that he created the Earth, and I really don't believe that Adam and Eve crapola (because wouldn't we all be his kids somewhere, and isn't that gross?) I don't believe in the Immaculate Conception. I don't believe in Heaven or Hell. Especially Hell. What kind of God would do that to anyone? Sure there are assholes around, but burning for eternity seems harsh. Isn't torturing considered bad here on Earth? Why is it okay for God?

Take the emotion and what we all learned as kids out of it, and I think it's all just stories made up to keep people in line, like the bogey-man, as Indiana Jones put it.

Now, I'm not going to say that pedophile priests had nothing to do with my disillusionment, but the truth is I haven't gone to church regularly in 15 years. Sure, a few weddings and my nephews' First Communion and Baptism and stuff, but all I ever saw on those occasions were bitter old guys in robes yelling at everyone. Needless to say, I never felt the presence of a higher power, just an old windbag. So, the Catholic Church scandal really didn't do it for me. I was already gone. But it did give me more ammunition, because let's face it, I'm pretty sure most of the ones who weren't diddling little boys knew it was happening somewhere and never spoke up, so that makes them guilty. And there is no freaking way I'll ever give money to the church again, knowing that it's probably just going to pay their legal fees somewhere down the road.

But I'm not going to just rail on Catholicism, because most religions I know of are pretty out there. I'll boil it down to this; while it's wonderful that people need to believe in something greater than themselves to get by, throughout history, there have been more deaths, stonings, genocides, holy wars and Crucifixions in the name of religion than any of us will ever know. So, that doesn't seem like something I want to immerse myself in right now.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Slow Day at the Office

I generally like these kinds of days. A guy who who had my job before I did once told me, "Any day at CGS when you can do nothing related to CGS is a good day." Like today. In fact, I did nothing related to anything.

Well, I did manage to finish my Spiral-Notebook Man:

I want to start a new movement of Spiral Notebook Art and one day exhibit it. Hey, why not? Every other artistic movement is usually looked at as dumb in the beginning. And besides, it's recycling.

Anyway,I wanted to cover a variety of topics here, since there's really nothing going on, I think I'll rant about nothing. Makes sense, right?

Yesterday was Mother's Day, so, like a good son, I went to see my mom and grandmother and I brought cards. I also brought laundry. Sue me. Now, I'm going to upset a lot of mothers out there (if any of them read this thing), but I feel Mother's Day is generally pretty ridiculous. Now, to understand my argument and not just think I'm a lazy, cheap bastard, you need to divest yourself from the emotional aspect of it and hear me out:

First, some history. According to Wikipedia, Mother's Day, as we know it, was concocted by by a woman named Anna Jarvis to "honor mothers and motherhood, especially within the context of families." It is a relatively new tradition, being established in the 20th Century, probably right around the time Hallmark started raking it in. Incidentally, Jarvis trademarked the terms "second Sunday in May" and "Mother's Day." However, nine years later, even she got sick of the commercialization and apparently spent all her money fighting what she felt was "abuse of the celebration." But the best part?

(Jarvis) was arrested in 1948 for disturbing the peace while protesting against the commercialization of Mother's Day, and she finally said that she "wished she would have never started the day because it became so out of control ..."
I'm with you, Anna. but not because I hate card-shopping or seeing my Nana. The idea is to honor your mother, sure, but here's my beef: I have a co-worker whose daughter is a college freshman, and this was the first Mother's day that the two would be separated. This affected my co-worker deeply, and I probably did not ease her pain by pointing out that there would be at least three more to come. Anyway, she said that she never appreciated everything that her mother did until she actually became one. Makes sense, except that she insisted that no one can ever appreciate what their mother does until they become a mother. This, I had to protest.

I will never be a mother, but I think I can still appreciate what my mother did growing up. Naturally, it wasn't always this way, but at 33, I think I figured that much out. I always thank my mother for what she did, and continues to do, for me, and I would hope that she knows it, and no silly card with a bird on it could say it any better. I guess I don't have a problem with Mother's Day as much as I have a problem with people who say things like that, and I don't think my co-worker is alone in her beliefs. I think some mother's get a sense of arrogance about the whole thing. And people buy into it. Dig this: I found a stat that said that Americans spend approximately $2.6 billion on flowers for Mother's Day, and $68 million on cards. Do you think Father's Day brings in that much coin? No way! (Incidentally, Father's Day is almost in direct opposition to Mother's Day, because the entire concept was was about to disappear until the Associated Men's Wear Retailers brought it back as a marketing scheme in the 1930's. At least there were no pretenses. All about the Benjamins there.)

Honestly, I will probably never be a mother or a father, so, I'm not going to get all "where's my day?" or anything, but I really hate any holiday that is forced on me (and being kind of an atheist, that pretty much covers them all.) I obviously like the ones that get me a day off, and I don't mind ones that celebrate something that actually happened, like Independence Day or Thanksgiving, (although that one's kind of tainted too, seeing as how the settlers pushed the Native Americans right out of here not too long after that initial feast), but most of them are just reasons to spend money that nobody has right now.

Except the flower and card companies, of course.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Still In the Garage


The Year of Living Biblically: One Man's Humble Quest to Follow the Bible As Literally As Possible The Year of Living Biblically: One Man's Humble Quest to Follow the Bible As Literally As Possible by A.J. Jacobs

My review

The Bible is weird.

View all my reviews.

I was listening to Weezer today, and the song "In the Garage" came up on my sad, pathetic ipod (but I bet Rivers would appreciate it.) I always thought this song was kind of funny, mostly because it mentions "Kitty Pryde... and Nightcrawler, too." Obviously, two of the X-men. I never gave much thought to what the song meant. I just thought it was kind of neat that I recognized most of the references (a 12-sided die, etc.) The song says that the narrator feels safe in his garage with all of his stuff, because no one cares about his ways, which to me, implies his nerdly ways. He was probably made fun of for liking KISS and playing Dungeons and Dragons, but he could always retret to his sanctuary and be himself and not be concerned with the cares of the world. So, he was a geek.

Thing is, Weezer's Blue Album had a release date of May 10, 1994. I'm sure we all remember the "Buddy Holly" video (directed by Spike Jonze) taking MTV by storm, winning prizes for Breakthrough Video and Best Alternative Video. It was hilarious and ground-breaking, with all the "Happy Days" footage spliced in, making it seem like the band was there performing and Fonzie was dancing to them. And a couple months later, Forrest Gump would be released and win Best Picture for the same thing. Personally, I was amazed. At the Weezer video, I mean. Forrest sucked.

Fast-forward a decade (or less). Those teenagers that Weezer was singing about hiding in their garage to jam are all grown up. And thanks to the interweb being everywhere, they don't have to hide anymore. It turns out there were millions of them, and now they can all get togetehr and hang in chatrooms instead of garages. But that's not all, they can show themselves in public, and be who they are. The irony is this was partly inspired by "Buddy Holly," and the very same teens that Weezer was singing about in "In the Garage" came out of the garage because they were so jazzed by Buddy Holly video.

The point is, suddenly geek-chic is the thing, and I'm not sure how it happened, but these things don't have to be hidden in the garage anymore. In fact, it's almost cooler that they aren't. And I'm not sure how I feel about it all. I mean, I was as big a geek as anyone (probably still am), but even I knew that some things are better left unsaid. And do you know why I don't want to have children? because I'm still in the garage, where I belong, only it's my apartment now. I'm still just a big kid who doesn't want to be bothered by the rest of the world. I just want to sit here and do my thing and be left alone.

And it's Weezer's fault.