Saturday, July 30, 2005

Refrain from chewing own hand off

It's amazing just how foul one's mood can become after spending an entire afternoon listening to conversation that centers around hair, skin, makeup, and clothes.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Ima write me a play

So it occurred to me that even though this little site o' mine is my online presence as a playwright, I haven't written anything here about playwriting or even theater in quite a while, even though it's been on my mind quite a bit much as it can be anyway, what with me having a kiddo on the way in a few months. Third trimester comin up ya'll!

But yes, I've been thinking about it. Plays. Wrighting. Thea-tray.

See, I'm in that stage right now where I have a new idea brewing in my head, and it's been brewing there long enough and I still feel attached enough to it to know that it will probably make its way from the synapses firing in my brain to the pages of a script. It may be an immense departure from the idea I'm currently batting about like a wide eyed kitten with a drugged ball of yarn, but it will become. It will exist, probably. But I haven't found my way to starting on it yet, at least not starting on it in the sense of putting words on paper in a script like format.

Why is that?

I could say that I've been busy (I have) but nah, that ain't it. It's more of a matter of faith, or rather a lack of it and the need to once again discover it and believe in it. It seems that every time I start on a full length like this, I have to remember not to psyche myself into inaction. I'm like a kid standing at the edge of a cold cold river and it's a hot day and I know I want to get in there and swim around but I know it's gonna be really fucking cold at first but I also know that any second now I'm gonna do it, some inner traffic light is gonna tip from Stop to Go and I'll just fling myself in all at once and it'll be great, but for's an odd moment. Looking for a bit of faith. I think that's why I love projects like Slapdash Flimflammery: one night to churn out a piece that will get performed the next day. Absolutely zero spare time for any of this "but what does it all mean" bullshit.

But it'll happen. It will. And I'm typing those words out there as much for myself as I am for you. I'll keep ya'll posted.

Monday, July 25, 2005

Oh that's just fucking GREAT!

Barely 24 hours after blogging about my minor snake incident, I run across this little doozy about one of my greatest bathroom/snake related fears coming to ass-biting life. My favorite quote from the article: "No one knows how the snake got in the toilet, or where it went after that."

That's just EXACTLY what I wanted to read.

Everybody's an expert

So it seems that when you're having a kid, damn near everybody you know reveals themselves as some kind of parenting expert. No really. I had no idea I was surrounded by so many people who moonlight as professionals in the field of child care. Pretty much everybody is ready with some kind of piece of advice or an opinion.

While most of these folks have their hearts in the right place, and some of the advice is good, I must confess that there is one particular brand of "expert" that bugs the living shit out of me more than any of them: the Under-reactor, so named because they believe that no matter what desires you may express in regards to keeping your child healthy/safe/clean/happy/well fed/rested/alive, the Under-reactor is always there to inform you that you're over-reacting. My wife and I seem to encounter a lot of these people. For example, make the statement that you do not wish your child to huff exhaust fumes, play with guns, or snort coke, and there's always some fucker in earshot ready to tell you, "Shit man! When I was a kid, my mom used to feed us blow for lunch and then send us each outside with an AK-47 and the keys to the station wagon so we could huff us some fumes! And I turned out just fine!"

And that's what it always comes back to: they were raised that way, and they turned out "fine" so therefore my kids should get the same treatment. Never mind that the source of this sagely advice has drool running down his chin that's about to drip onto his minimum wage paycheck that he needs to cash so he can pay his parents the rent he owes them.

Sunday, July 24, 2005

The Snake of Consideration

So yesterday morning, I'm out in my back yard being a good home-owner and busting my ass on some yard work when I look down and notice a slithering in the as yet uncut grass. I kneel down and spot an itty-bitty reddish colored snake meandering between the blades of green. About six inches long with a head no bigger than a blackeyed pea, the little guy wasn't afraid to snap at my gloved hand when I put it out in front of him. With a bit of effort I managed to pick him up and carried him out front where my brother in law identified him as a corn snake. This behaviour, by the way, would completely horrify my mother, who believes that the only good snake is a dead snake.

I set the little snake down in the grass and went back to work. While I was working, it occurred to me that even though I had found him in the back yard, I had released him in the front. I tried to imagine how he (or she, I didn't look to see its sex and even if I had I wouldn't have known what I was looking at) might feel about being removed from his or her previous location and just dropped into a brand new one with no say in the matter. The equivalent for me would be like getting yanked up and moved to another city, or at least to the other side of town. No warning, no foreshadowing, the roof just opens up and a big hand comes out of the sky and carries me a few giant steps across the globe and plunks me down in some strange new land. And I thought for a second that this would really kinda suck. But then I wondered, would it really? Necessarily? It would certainly cause some level of inconvenience, but perhaps it could be a good thing. A sudden injection of change in one's life. Of course, such hand out of the sky occurrences do happen to some people via job transfers by huge uncaring corporations or deployments by huge uncaring militaries, but it's not like I was sending this snake off to war.

In the end, I decided that my little snake friend probably needed a change of scenery, and besides, I didn't want him to get cut up by the lawn mower, so I left him out front. I hope that he doesn't hold it against me.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Inappropriate Use of a Song in a Commercial # 23,477

Subaru has announced its official entry into the luxury SUV market with the introduction of the Tribeca, a minivannish looking Murano kind of thing. It sort of looks like they took a Forester and gave it some sleeker lines. Not sure if they're still aimed at the lesbian community with this one, that'll remain to be seen. How did Subaru become the official car of the lesbian community anyway? Did they go to the ladies or did the ladies to go them? Anyways.

So the ad for this all-wheel-drive wonder features said vehicle driving around an urban area whilst the ballad "Dust in the Wind" by the geograpically monikered prog rock outfit Kansas croons with all manner of sincerity and feeling. As the Tribeca passes by other competing SUV's, they all turn into dust. Which is then blown. In the wind. Indeed.

Fact: I am not a Kansas fan. I do not despise them nor wish them ill, but I have not in the past, nor do I plan to purchase any of their albums or spend much time listening to their music. In spite of that, I somehow heard that song a hell of a lot in my younger days, but I can't say how. Maybe it was after I started playing the guitar and it seemed like all of the other guys I met who also played could play that song. Guys like this could also typically play "Silent Lucidity" and the slow part of "Master of Puppets." They're a certain breed I tell you.

But this commercial with this song, this song that I'm not all that crazy about, with this vehicle that kind of irks me, the whole thing is just, it just makes me want to shoot a so-called marketing professional because come on folks, isn't this just getting a little stupid? Not that commercials are brilliant or anything, nobody's accusing them of that. The problem is more that they think we're stupid. They've basically taken a song that is all about the impermanence of the world, of life, of basically all human institutions and tried to spin it off as a theme song for beating out the competition. Which is stupid, and frankly, a tad on the insipid side.

And now I look at all these words I typed here and I wonder why I'm so peeved over a stupid commercial. Stupid stupid stupid.

Play some Skynyrd.

Friday, July 15, 2005

The Handing-out of the Cubes

The company I work for recently released a new mission statement, and to re-enforce it among the employees, our CEO just went around the building wearing a funny hat and pushing an ice-cream cart, complete with umbrella, and handing out ice-cream and cubes to people.

Cubes? What are these cubes you speak of, Holmes? Are you all being given brand spanking new cubicles? Wow, what a, um, neat, uh, present. Hmmm.

No, these cubes are actually made up of a series of 4 smaller cubes that can be turned and folded around each other to display different pictures, four of which contain either the new mission statements or motivational mantras. It is these motivational mantras, or rather, the choice of pictures against which to juxtapose these various statements that has me a bit confused. Or not so much confused as just not getting it, completely. Or left wondering if there's anything significant to get. Let me just tell you what I see here and see if you can make anything of it.

On the first side, there is a picture of three men running a hurdles race. It is clearly an event hosted by the University of Texas, as I can see a Longhorn logo on one of the hurdles. They're all very focused on what they're doing. The mantra below it is "Results Matter - Always." So maybe that one's not a very good example of what I'm talking about, as it clearly means to show these three athletes pushing hard towards the end result, which in their case is the finish line and being the first one across it. This should serve to remind the employee that he/she too must have the laser-focus of a track-and-field athlete, always aiming, striving, pushing towards the results, which by the way, my little cube informs me always matter, not how you got there or what you did on your way to Results-land. God, I try not to be cynical, and yet! And yet!

As I turn the cube clockwise, I see a picture of two bald eagles. One of these magnificent beast-birds is alighting a tree branch, while the other one has already taken a seat. The seated eagle appears to be screeching with some level of hostility towards the soon-to-be co-inhabitant of the branch. The caption above both of their snowy white heads reads "Some only dream about goals, others reach for them." See, now this is closer to what I'm talking about. I know that eagles and lofty ideals often go hand in hand in the motivational world, but this? What is this? What is the lofty goal that others are dreaming of, but these two national symbols have reached for? The branch? Is one of the birds dreaming and the other is reaching? Has the one in flight just returned from a quest of goal-reaching, and the other is screeching its anger that it was awakened from its goal-dreaming?

Another turn 'o the cube and now we're watching hockey. If I were a hockey fan or if I cared enough to go look it up, I'd know who these teams are, mmmmmmmmmmmbut I don't. What we see in this picture is a goalie blocking a net while an opposing player goes for the shot, and another player from the goalie's team is sliding on his stomach towards them both. The caption: Open and honest communication is the key to success. See, now I'm stumped. Who here is communicating openly and honestly? I guess one could interpret this montage to say that, by their body language, each of these fellows is communicating his goals in an open and honest fashion, but that's all I've got.

Now let us continue on to the final and, without a doubt, most perplexing display to be found on this cube. The picture: an old cannon, I'm guessing Civil War era or maybe earlier. With its shiny casing, it looks ready to fire a ball of burning death at any advancing army. The caption....are you ready for this? It reads "'s greatest asset is our associates." The possibilities are overwhelming. Does the cannon represent an associate? Are we to our company what weapons are to an army? Are we expected to be more lethal killing machines, blasting our way towards the results, which are the only things that matter in the first place? Right?

So help me out here. Email the Holmes with your thoughts.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Ode to a pube

Ode to the pube i just saw
Sitting at the edge of the urinal
In the men's room of the place where i work
The urinal on the fourth floor
Left hand urinal
How curly you are, so twisty and black in color
Does your color match that of your brothers
Who sit atop the head of he from whom you fell,
Or are they of a lighter shade?
Oh sad little pube
Was it your time to go?
Did you fall freely, released from your follicle,
Or were you snipped in twain by a marauding zipper,
Perhaps causing your ex-owner to wince and curse,
Not realizing the pain that you felt
Oh misunderstood little pube
How long wilt thou sit at the edge of the men's urinal
The one on the left-hand side
In the fourth floor bathroom of the place where i work
How long?

Monday, July 11, 2005

Bathroom? Oh I won't be needing that

By show of hands, how many of you have ever had someone offer to bring their own toilet to your place when they're going to be spending the night? No, not toilet PAPER, just toilet. Their own private port-o-let, so easy and convenient they'll barely have to step away from the bed.

Well I'm here to tell you, it happens. It happened to me. It could happen to you.