Wednesday, September 29, 2010

The Plot Thickens

You surely recognize my car, with which I am inextricably linked. Well, today that car was the subject of an office-wide email, which no less than fifty people received. The subject line was "Green Cadillac," and the email itself said this, and this alone:
"Does anyone know who the owner is of the older green Cadillac that has been parking in our lot on a regular basis?"
I am that owner! Apparently my car is so awesome that people assume I am parking illegally in private lots to escape the high costs of parking meters--something like $0.25 for a half-hour in most of Traverse City. I mean, how else would a person afford the monthly payments on such an automobile, other than cutting corners when it comes to parking meters? Really, I understand why people would ask these sorts of questions.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Blog Monday: That's So You

It's been 43 days since I've last updated this blog. In that time, I've taken the bar exam, moved to Traverse City, and failed to eat a giant pizza, among other, less noteworthy accomplishments. In the meantime, Emily Moiseeff said I could join Blog Mondays, wherein a weekly topic is chosen in advance in an effort to avoid writer's block and maintain blogsistency. This week's topic:

Name three or four objects or things that, when seen by others, make them immediately think of you.

Food Challenges. I have become something of an amateur competitive eater in the last few years, a span that has included successful runs at the Fifth Third Burger and The Corner Bar's twelve chili-dog challenge. More recently, though, I've ran into some difficulties, including the giant pizza pictured to the right: a 24" behemoth with at least eight toppings created by the Sazerac Lounge. Rules allow two-person teams an hour to complete it. My brother did the math and concluded that each person is responsible for the equivalent of one round, 17" pizza. My friend Moose tried this a couple weeks ago and came really close, to the point that they gave us the pizza for half-price; a successful attempt gets the pizza for free, while anything less ordinarily costs something in the neighborhood of $30. Nevertheless, multiple friends and family members cheered us on, and were disappointed only in the way that a concert-going U2 fan would be disappointed that she didn't hear anything off of the 'Pop' album. And, therefore, I'd like to think that I am associated in others' minds with food challenges, irrespective of my infrequent success.

Late-90s Cadillacs. Way back in October of 2007, one month into the beginning of my three-year stint of daily drives from Grand Rapids to East Lansing and back--i.e., law school--my Toyota Corolla broke down, never to be driven again. I did what anyone in that situation would do: I bought a 1997 Cadillac Seville. Now, 100,000 miles and nearly three calendar years later, people tell me when they see such a Cadillac on the road, and it's usually with some degree of surprise that it wasn't me behind the wheel. I'd therefore like to think that I am associated in others' minds with this over-sized, difficult-to-park, unnecessarily fast, domestically produced status symbol whose body style has not aged particularly well.

Student ID. I'm 27. Besides brief post-college forays into the world of bartending and teaching K-12 music and K-1 physical education (note: I didn't do these things simultaneously), I have been a student since kindergarten. The days of purchasing textbooks, free soda at Qdoba, and dividing the calendar into fifteen-week segments are now over. And, they've been replaced--in a somewhat dramatic and relatively abrupt fashion--with a new city, new (rented) house, and a new career [pictured left-to-right, respectively, sort of]. I'm happy to say that my days of student identification are now complete.

Monday, July 19, 2010

The Debut of Ollie

My roommate Erin got a new puppy yesterday. His name is Ollie. He is supposed to be a maltese, though I'm not entirely convinced he isn't actually some kind of adorable hamster-muppet hybrid. Chani's basically okay with this arrangement:
He's super-tiny, though--he'll probably end up being like three or four pounds.
Hobbies include biting string, napping.

Monday, July 12, 2010

The Carter Six Degrees of Separation

Lil Wayne is the Kevin Bacon of Facebook, basically.

Monday, July 5, 2010

I'm Assuming the Rent is Payable in Erectile Dysfunction Medication

Here's some unusual email correspondence I had over the weekend. Up first, me:
Hello, I am writing in response to your Craigslist ad ("3 Bed, 2 Bath | 2,100 Sq Ft on 0.95 Acres"). Could you please tell me the address of the house, and the date that it will be available? Also, are you interested in selling it as well, or just renting?
Reasonable! But here's where things took an unusual turn--the reply:
I did take your response concerning the advert, I posted on Craigslist. The house is still available, but presently I'm not around.. I did bid for a portion of petroleum land sometimes ago in West Africa, and fortunately I won the bidding, so I have to move quickly down to Africa to have my company set up because I will still have to bid again for it in the next 10 years. I came over here with my wife, we both bought the house when we got married. As soon as we settle down here I had a thought of selling the house, so I have to look for an agent, after getting one, we got a deal but later my wife advised against that. She said we may not be able to win the bidding next time, in other to keep our head when we return that we have to keep the house. I reasoned with her and accepted her advice. So I contacted the agent back and requested for my keys and documents. Later we decided to have the house rent out, we would have given the same agent this job also but the truth of the matter is that the agent would want to handle it professionally and the occupant may not be able to reason along with him later. If you notice, you will discover that the price we are offering is far below standard price, this is enough for you to know that we are not after the rental fee but the absolute care for the property. I know there is no way I can be sure that you are the right person to live in the house because we won't be able to see physical before sending you the keys and the documents to occupy the space. However, I just had a feeling that anyone who knows what it takes to put the kind of structure down should know that maintaining a building is mandatory, so if you believe you can take good care of the house and handle it like yours, then I will be more than happy to let you rent the house.
Wow. To break it down, here's my assessment of the statements that had the least statistical likelihood of appearing in a reply to my original email, in descending order:
3. "I did bid for a portion of petroleum land sometimes ago in West Africa, and fortunately I won the bidding."
2. "I just had a feeling that anyone who knows what it takes to put the kind of structure down should know that maintaining a building is mandatory."
1. "I reasoned with her, and accepted her advice."
The most surprising thing, though, is that the guy never revealed himself to have access to cheap Enzyte or replica watches, or actually be a Nigerian prince looking to liquidate his princely fortune by way of an American citizen who'll wire him $5000 USD to get the ball rolling.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Game Time

Here's a new game I made up. Of the following blocks of text, two are recent Missed Connection postings from Grand Rapids' Craigslist page, of which I've altered only the line breaks, capitalization, and punctuation (to maximize poetic value), and the other is an actual poem by John Berryman. You decide which is which. Go!

Number One
I saw you recently
at Meijer in your Saturn. There was a little girl
in the back seat.

I'd like to be your baby daddy.
I think I love you.

actually I know I do.

If you think this is you, please respond to me.
I'll buy you food and we can go see Eclipse together.
You look like the Twilight type.

Number Two
They pointed me out on the highway, and they said
'That man has a curious way of holding his head.'

They pointed me out on the beach; they said 'That man
Will never become as we are, try as he can.'

They pointed me out at the station, and the guard
Looked at me twice, thrice, thoughtfully & hard.

I took the same train that the others took,
To the same place. Were it not for that look
And those words, we were all of us the same.
I studied merely maps. I tried to name
The effects of motion on the travellers,
I watched the couple I could see, the curse
And blessings of that couple, their destination,
The deception practised on them at the station,
Their courage. When the train stopped and they knew
The end of their journey, I descended too

Number Three
We were in line together.
The guy ahead was soooo slooooow.

You sneezed. We talked.
We smiled together.

Would be nice to see you again.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Best. Most Important. My Favorite.

The Blue Album. Pinkerton. Make Believe.

Biggie. Jay-Z. Lil Wayne.

Hopslam. Oberon. Two-Hearted Ale.

Bratwurst. Hamburgers. Hot dogs.

Shawn Michaels. Hulk Hogan. The Ultimate Warrior.

Burger King. McDonald's. Wendy's.

Japan. America. Germany.*

Late Registration. 808s and Heartbreak. College Dropout.

Baseball. Basketball. Football.

Executive. Legislative. Judicial.

Jughead. Archie. Reggie.

*Cars, not people.