Jun 26 2007

More Craigslist Fun

I posted another add on craigslist. Re-posted for your viewing pleasure.


Dinette Set: Table and Four Chairs – $20

I know what you’re thinking. Really, I do. And it’s not “$20 for a full dinette set? How can that be? This is a deal too good to be true!” No, what you’re thinking is, “Wow, that must be a really crappy dinette set.” And in a way, you’re right. It is a crappy dinette set, on the outside. Inside, it’s got a heart of pure gold. (Or fibrous lignum cut into planks, I’m not sure which.)

See? I’m not trying to pull anything over on you.

That said, it does it’s job, and it’s never complained. Without the inner leaf, it’s 42” inches square, 29” high. The inner leaf is 17”, which means fully expanded you’ve got a glorious 59” of dining expanse. Now, last time I ate out with my girlfriend, we spent over thirty bucks on breakfast. That’s ten dollars more than these table and chairs, and that breakfast didn’t even come with with anything to eat it on. Score one for the crappy dinette set. See, its beauty lies in its utility, not its looks.

That’s what I’m talking about. This dinette set is like the Terminator: very few words (aside from a snappy epithet, which is seldom audible); it just gets the job done. It’s a trooper.

But what makes this dinette set look so crappy? Well, first of all, just glance at it. It looks like it came out of a 1980’s time share condo. I imagine it used to share a room with one of those red-black-and-white “modern” minimalist illustrations of some chick wearing a V-shaped shoulder-padded jacket and stirrup pants, looking provocatively back over her shoulder. You know, like the ones you still see that haircut store that hasn’t updated it’s posters since before the New Kids on the Block. But then, who expects a soldier to be stylish? I don’t. They’ve got jobs to do.

Also, it’s a bit scuffed up. If you look carefully at the front of it, you can see a small black line between two of the horizontal supports – that’s because it’s not flush. Probably the result of some field trauma. (I don’t think Cheney’s war machine properly armored it, but that’s neither here nor there.) It could probably be hammered back into place, but I never felt the urge to do so, since it works just fine as is. Don’t fix what ain’t broke, as they say. And, since I’m leaving town, I need to transfer this bad boy to another unit. Don’t let this dinette become ronin. The last thing we want is the Blackwater division of Ethan Allen getting wind of his impressive record.

Looking for a throwback to the ’80s? Have a rental unit you don’t care about? Need a poker table for the garage? All are perfect roles for this grunt of a table. You’ll never worry about spilling beer on it, potting plants, or changing your grandson’s diaper on it. (Although the last has never happened, I’m sure it wouldn’t mind. All part of the job for this intrepid dinette set.)

You support our soldiers, right? Even if our foreign policy is totally fubar’d and you don’t think they should be there in the first place? Yeah, me too.

So buy this dinette set. If you can show me military ID, it’s free.

(You’ll need a truck. Point Loma / Loma Portal area)


Jun 18 2007

Expectations and Commitment

Last night I ran into a girl I haven’t seen in a while. We talked about significant others’, work, and life status in general. Eventually, she asked me where I my relationship with my girlfriend is going.

“Well, there you’re diving down the rabbit hole. You’re asking a question that, to understand my answer, requires you to view the world through my, perhaps skewed, philosophical perspective. Or I can give you the canned answer, but it won’t be as interesting.”

She attempts to cut me off at the pass: “So it sound like you don’t think it’s going to last?”

“Sounds like you don’t want the canned answer.”

“No.”

“Then it’s not that easy. See, desires are driven by the ego. The ego gets you into trouble. Not achieving your desires gets you into trouble. You know the parable about the man who dreams he’s being attacked by a tiger, right? And he’s so scared in his nightmare that he wakes, sweating profusely with his heart racing? Well, the tiger wasn’t real, but induced completely real issues: he’s scared, sweating, and his heart is pounding.”

“You weren’t joking about about it being a philosophical question.”

“Nope. But stick with me. Although you asked about a ‘good thing’ – my relationship – and I gave you and example of a ‘bad thing’ – a nightmare – but at the core they have the same essence: desires. You could turn the parable around and say that the man’s desire to hold on to life is what created the vulnerability that causes him to worry about losing it in the first place. He was worried about losing something that he wasn’t even in danger of losing. On a smaller scale, our desire for things like a better job, TVs, a new car, etcetera – things we don’t even have – open these vulnerabilities. We start to worry and stress about losing things we don’t even have yet. Doesn’t that seem silly?”

“I suppose. But I don’t see how you can be with someone for nearly a year and not have expectation as to where it’s going.”

“That’s just the issue: expectations. I try not to have ‘expectations.’ As someone I respect very much recommended, I try to give thanks for those things that work out in my favor, but I try not to ‘expect’ them. Otherwise, I open myself to losing things I don’t even have. It’s like grasping for clouds – only through the act of attempting to own do you realize your failure. I give thanks for what I receive, but realize that tomorrow the world may change. Using the canonical example, what if I get hit by a bus tomorrow morning?”

“It sounds like an excuse not to get emotionally invested. You’re over thirty, right? Do you just want to bounce around to different girls; to be a gigolo for the rest of your life?”

“Ah, there you went from one end of the spectrum to the other: the expectations of interminable fairy-tale love, to the complete absence of it. The problem with both views, as I see it, it that both are static caricatures. No one is static; everyone’s always slowly but subtly changing. I think the relationships that end up going the distance are the ones where people evolve in similar or complementary directions, while some end because people evolve in incompatible directions. And that’s not to say that it’s someone’s ‘fault’, other than the prevalent mis-guided perception that everyone will be tomorrow who they are today. In fact, in the west, that’s frequently seen as a noble quality, while to me it seems quite absurd.”

“So now you’re indicting marriage?”

“No, not at all. Even I may get married some day. But I’m not operating under the assumption that it’s immutable. Just because you realize that there’s the possibility the world as you know it may change in an instant, doesn’t mean you don’t commit yourself completely to what you’re doing right now. In fact, it may even be an argument for working harder than ever, and not procrastinating. This recognition of flux isn’t a license for apathy. I definitely have goals that I strive for. But there difference is that I don’t expect to achieve them – I work my ass off to get there, and if I get there, I try to accept the results gracefully. If I don’t get there, I try to do the same.

“Most people don’t seem to be able to believe that one can work whole-heartedly toward a goal – say, a new job or a marriage – but at the same time not ‘expect’ to succeed. In the U.S., at least, it comes across sounding like ‘not believing in yourself’ – which is almost heretical to western ears – although I see it as something even stronger: I believe in myself, and I’m also aware of the world. The most prevalent western epithet I’ve heard that can capture some essence of this is the Serenity Prayer: ‘God, give us grace to accept with serenity the things that cannot be changed, courage to change the things that should be changed, and the wisdom to distinguish the one from the other.’ So asking me to extrapolate where my relationship is going is a non-trivial question. I’m trying to let both her and myself evolve, and hopefully we evolve together. Make sense?”

“So your relationship has potential, right?”

“Yeah.”


May 30 2007

Moe

I know this guy we’ll call Moe. Moe is a bartender, and like most bartenders in his part of town, Moe is quite the ladies man. He’s toned, wears the right clothes, smiles a lot, and is never at a loss for words – especially for the pretty ladies. And they usually respond in kind. So it was somewhat of a surprise when, after flirting with a beautiful female customer during her drink order, she came back to tab out and said something that completely floored Moe. He was frozen, slack-jawed, with an injured-puppy dog look, muttering, “I … I … don’t know how to respond to that.”

No one heard what he or she had said. We had to corner him later. Apparently it didn’t go down exactly as Moe had wanted.

“So when she was paying her tab, I said something completely over the top, you know, like ‘Thanks for the tip, you’re really beautiful, we should really have sex sometime.’ That’s when she stopped, frowned, and said, ‘We already have,’ and walked out.”

Ouch.


Mar 20 2007

Naked Burrito Night

Bartender Betty met up with her man, Lush Lou last Sunday. Now, Lou may not be a lush – I’m not sure – but he had certainly had a full day of Sunday drinking going on. And, he had a friend that was drunk enough to continue buying rounds for the celebratory group. In short order, Lou can barely remain standing, and Betty puts an end to the evening for Lou.

On the stumble home, Lou grumbles a request for food.

“Babe, I’m not going to carry you to the taco stand and back, so why don’t I talk you home, and then I’ll run out and get a burrito for you.”

Betty’s a pretty cool chick, if you ask me.

Lou grunts in acknowledgment, and they proceed home. He face plants on the couch, fully clothed, while she walks the few blocks to the taco shop and picks up a burrito for each of them. When she returns home, Lou is still face-down on the couch.

“Yo, babe, I’ve got food.”

Lou jumps up, slurs something that may have include the words “awesome” and “burrito.” He stumble into his bedroom, reappears moments later in just his boxers, and plops down on the couch, munching away. Betty’s completely non-plussed.

“Uh, what the fuck? Is this Naked Burrito Night or something?” Lou doesn’t seem to notice; he just keeps on eating.

Betty shrugs, strips down to her underwear, and plops down on the couch beside him. They dig in to their burritos.

Of course, this is when the roommate wanders into the living room.

Apparently, the moment was a bit awkward for Betty, but Lou didn’t seem to mind.


Mar 13 2007

Car Stolen

I was hanging out with some old friends last night, we ended up trotting down memory lane for bit, relating old stories. When brought up Rich, one of the old doormen, I asked, “Rich? The guy who stole Nae’s car?”

My friend wasn’t talking about that Rich, but I did derail her enough to tell an abbreviated story of Nae’s car theft. Of course, everyone in the industry in SD knew the story, but didn’t know that the victim was now my girlfriend. Hearty laughs and some joking about the fundamental interconnectness of all things ensues.

Until I summarised, about to move on to a new topic, with this positively world class spoonerism:

“Yeah, so that’s my girlfriend, the one who got her star colon.”

That’s when everyone paused, including myself, and then burst out laughing until I was crying.


Feb 28 2007

Difficult or Easy?

IMG_0430

Depends on your perspective.


Feb 5 2007

Early Aspirations

Last Saturday I was cleaning out the garage to put a bunch of boxes in storage. I came across a box my mom had put together that contained a bunch of old writing and questionnaire answers of mine – I’d say most of them were from the under-10 year old time frame. They types of things that were written on large three-lined composition paper glued colored construction paper. They certainly contained some wonderful insight into my personality.

ADHD Indicator
What I reported as my favorite sport or hobby over time moved regularly between: soccer, tennis, baseball, football, basketball, skiing, model railroading, writing, and sketching.

Anal Retentiveness Indicator
During a series of stories written about each holiday, I wrote about thrilling tale of for St. Patrick’s Day: after pinning a four leaf clover to the tail of a dragon, the dragon became my slave. At which point I had the dragon collect all the jewels of the world. And then had him sort them into piles – rubies with ruby, emeralds with emeralds, etc. And then, I had him put each pile in a bag. And label them.

On Martial Aspirations
I wrote a story about the “Snow Ninja.” ‘Nuff said.

On Fame
The person I’d most like to meet: Elvis.

Goals and Aspirations
What do I want to be when I grow up? Answers: “loyer,” “layer,” “lawyer,” and “a busboy in England.” Yeah, you read that right.


Jan 24 2007

Really?

Immolate Now!

Immolate now, and save!


Dec 8 2006

Courtesy Amber

Okay, this one gets a little graphic, so turn away now if you’re averse to such things….

Last night after training I went to a birthday BBQ for a friend of mine. The story of the killer whale at Sea World that pulled the trainer underwater came up, which prompted a string of bizarre Sea World stories. The winner, by far, was this little gem:

When Amber was about fifteen or so, she went to Sea World with some family, including her three year old nephew and grandmother. At some point during a tour through one of the habitats, a walrus was floating on it’s back. All of a sudden this mammoth-sized organ (or walrus-sized, as the case may be) began protruding up out of the water. The walrus reached down with a flipper and started rubbing it.

Nephew: “Grandma, what’s that!”

Grandma, to Tour Guide: “I think you need to find a girlfriend for that one.”

Tour Guide, desperately trying to redirect various children’s attention: “And if everyone will just look over here, you can see a group of Sea Lions at play….” It isn’t working, and kids and adults alike begin to gasp and murmur while the walrus continues to beat itself off; parents attempting to shoosh kids forward past the view.

Tour Guide, quietly, to Grandma: “Actually, his mate is in labor right now.”

Grandma: “So he’s a horny bastard right now, then.”

Nephew, with his mother trying to cover his eyes: “Grandma, what’s he doing?”

Through the muffled commotion, Amber trying suppress laughter, she see the walrus open his jaw wide, a shoot a load straight into his own mouth. Totally verifiable, you can ask her mother or grandmother.

Yes, universally voted the best story of the evening.

Now, however, I have this overwhelming urge to use the ultimate ice-breaker: “So, ever seen a walrus snowball himself?”


Dec 4 2006

Rupert

So I have this little theory about the name “Rupert.” It’s just fun to say. I don’t think anyone can really say the same without smiling. With that in mind, I placed the following ad on craiglist:

Dresser, Nightstand, File Cabinets, Utility Racks, and Acerbic Wit – $20

Dresser: I originally got this at Ikea some years ago, I think for a few hundred dollars. It’s heavy enough that it permanently dented the roof of my car as I drove it home strapped to the top, so I’ll always have that memory. It’s still in pretty good condition, although there’s some slightly visible water damage on top if you catch it in the right light. Put a place mat on top, with some new-age rocks-in-a-glass-vase-with-a-dead-stick arrangement, and you’re headed straight up Contemporary Alley. $50, you’ll need a truck/SUV to move this. I don’t have one, obviously.

Nightstand: I got this an even longer time ago. You’ll notice it doesn’t match the dresser. Now I have matching furniture, so this is going as well. Modern black/natural wood style, ideal for storing a some books and a drawer full of sex toys. If inserted diagonally, I think it could probably fit a double-ended monster, but I’ve never tried. $20, can probably fit this in a sedan.

File Cabinets: Even older yet, with some stains on the top where I used them as makeshift saw-horses. Perfect for laying a door across the top for a ghetto-fabulous and (super-functional) desk. I don’t have the keys to the locks, but seriously, I don’t think a standard file cabinet ever stopped anyone. I mean, my little cousin picked the locks once. If you’re looking for a door as well, I’ve got one that’s sturdy as all hell. $20 for the pair, $10 discount if you take the door as well. You can probably fit one cabinet in a sedan, maybe two if you have a big trunk (and no junk in it), but you’ll definitely need a truck/SUV for the door.

Utility Racks: I’ve got two! One tastefully decorated in dirty-garage gray, and another painted in some sort of brown. The gray one looks super-manly industrial, so I stored my power tools there, and it actually increased my sperm count. The brown one looks nicer, and has heavy-duty wheels on the bottom. With it’s five conveniently spaced shelves and stunning paint job, it’s perfect for the kids who want to try for a five-story version of a soapbox derby. (I recommend putting the heavier kids on the bottom, as it has a tendency to topple on steep inclines at high speeds. Brakes not included.) $20 for the brown one, $10 for the gray, or $25 for both. Will require a truck/SUV.

Notice how I kept referring to the size of vehicle you’ll need to obtain this wonderful selection of things-that-hold-other-things? Yup, you guessed it – I won’t deliver. Don’t even ask. I don’t even have access to a truck.

All prices are negotiable, with the following caveat: if you offer me less than I’m asking, and you:

  • don’t show
  • keep re-arranging times
  • show up super-late
  • show up with an inappropriately sized vehicle to transport your loot
  • show up without the cash
  • otherwise waste my time

then I’m really not going to be inclined to “hold it for you for another day” or do any other such favors – I’m just going to move on to the next person on the list. However, if you offer me more money, although this is highly unlikely, I’m bound to be much more accommodating. I’m not trying to be a cock-knocker, most people think I’m a pretty nice guy. It’s more of a respect thing than a money thing. But then again, I’m not nice enough to give this stuff away. I still want the money.

I can be available for pickup just about any time this weekend after noon on Saturday.

Ask for Rupert. No, that’s not my name, but I’ll know you’re looking for the furniture, since no telemerketer has ever called asking for Rupert.

Sure enough, everyone that called, snickered after they said “Rupert.” I think I just like making people say “Rupert.”