After all this time I’m coming home to you

Jimmy 'The Rev' Sullivan

I started writing a lead-in to the death of Jimmy Sullivan. I wanted to tie it into celebrities that have passed away recently. How their deaths fascinate and captivate us. How you hear the news and for the rest of your life you remember where you were when you heard.

It sucked. It didn’t sound or read right. It was totally superficial and disingenuous.

I’ll just say that I really fucking loved Jimmy Sullivan on the drums. I’ve been legitimately saddened since I heard he passed away. Afterlife has been going through my head almost non-stop.

There aren’t a lot of musicians that can have this effect on me. Two of them were in Avenged Sevenfold and one of them is no longer with us.

I still remember the first time I saw Ax7 live.

It was years ago at Warped. Everyone else was playing 2:00 minute, typical punk tunes. Avenged Sevenfold comes onto a small side-stage and their entire set-list was four songs. It lasted thirty minutes.

They played the best show of the day. Synyster Gates and The Rev blew me away. Zachy and Shadows were incredible.

I think I’ve seen almost 80 bands in the last ten years and Avenged Sevenfold has consistently put on the best show, never disappointing in any of the three times I’ve seen ’em. They went from side-stage to main stage to headlining their own tour. But it’s not going to be the same without Jimmy.

RIP Rev.

I’ve got a sickness, it feels like love

1 – Like millions of others out there, I’m wondering whatever happened to the idea of a holiday break.

The days went by too quickly, not a lot was accomplished, not a lot of time was spent doing something I enjoyed, too much time was spent on the road, I endured too many screaming little kids and dogs that made my eyes ache, the weather was total and complete bullshit, etc.

The problem is without a wife and kids of my own, I’m generally without an excuse when I’m asked to travel to see family. It’s not that I don’t want to see my folks and do the traditional Christmas thing, but one night to me is perfect. Five nights of not sleeping in your own bed, however, is excessive and dangerous.

2 – Packers in the playoffs!

I really wanted it this season, certainly more-so than others. To not make it with 10 wins in a season where Rodgers has done so well, Woodson has been a defensive MVP and Matthews emerged as a super-stud would have been a real let-down.

It looks like we’ll see the Cardinals in the playoffs, and I’m totally good with that. Nothing about them scares me. I know they can look really good at times, but they’re also prone to putting up a lousy showing.

The Wild Card weekend can’t get here quick enough.

3 – Last night was a shit-show and probably the highlight of the break. Ben, Bobby, my aunt, uncle and I went out to celebrate my little sister’s 21st. Not gonna lie, she impressed me. That little girl was downing shots and Malibu like it was her job. She almost made it the entire night, too. Then we got home and her big brother had to hold her hair while she yacked into a toilet.

4 – I’ve been looking at a lot of “Best of the Decade” lists. Movies, athletes, games, etc. Last week I was asked to come up with my top ten favorite albums of the decade.

It’s not going to be easy. I started looking tonight but I won’t be able to come up with a list until tomorrow.

So far my only locks are Saturate, Breakaway, and God Loves Ugly.

4b – Shut the fuck up on Kelly Clarkson. Breakaway was a pop masterpiece.


4c – God Loves Ugly will be #1 on the list.

Slug of Atmosphere

It’s probably only 2nd to More Betterness! on my list of favorite albums of all-time.

5 – Another one bites the dust.

One of the few competent senior staff members left at SP has decided to take a job in the cities, he told me tonight. The announcement goes out tomorrow.

My hope is this is the straw that breaks the camel’s back and management realizes that serious changes need to be made in their business model.

Realistically, I doubt anything comes about and SP will fall further into obscurity.

5b – I’m happy for Chris; I know this is what he’s wanted for a while. But he’s a good dude and a golfing buddy and one less awesome person I’ll know here in town.

5c – I need out.

6 – I LOVE Penn & Teller: Bullshit!

The Tudors and The Wire and Weeds and Californication get the pub, but this is the reason to get premium channels (unless, you know, you can get the show without the need to have Cable or DirectTV…just sayin’).

If you haven’t seen the show, you’re missing out. The two Las Vegas magicians pick a topic and call, well, bullshit on it. I’ll let Wikipedia take it from here:

Many episodes aim to debunk pseudoscientific ideas, supernatural beliefs, popular fads and misconceptions, and often from a libertarian point of view, the political philosophy espoused by both Penn and Teller. The show criticizes proponents of what they perceive as nonsense and dishonesty — bullshit — often citing ulterior political or financial motives. The stated aim of the show is to apply critical thinking to misconceptions.

Hilarity ensues.

Some of the episodes are a little touching, many are startling, all are great for a good chuckle.

Seriously, get it to the top of your Netflix que.

7 – New Years plans fell through. It’s never been one of my really big holidays but I was looking forward to Chicago until I decided I simply couldn’t take Thursday off. Now I’m open to other ideas. The Cities? Wausau? A good time in EC?

Let me know if you’ve got anything.

A Happy Holidays entry

1 – Happy Holidays, everyone.

2 – My little sister dominates Christmas every year. She comes up with thoughtful gifts for everyone and when it’s time to handout the presents for the family she does an awesome job. No one is more excited to don a Santa hat and pass out gifts than my little sis.

She easily stole the show tonight, too. She made my brother a blanket and she gave me a picture to hang with four pics of the family cats, Boo and Misfit. I love it. I couldn’t ask for a better gift.

3 – Speaking of Boo, he ate well tonight.

I had to give him to my folks when I moved, but I’m proud to say I raised him well. When I got him he was only a couple weeks old and the size of a fist. By the time I had to give him over to the parents he was the most social cat you’ve ever seen in your entire life.

He’s like a friendly little dog if dogs didn’t typically suck. He loves attention from anyone and everyone. He’ll follow you around wherever you go. His favorite room in the house in the kitchen. Hell, he’ll fetch.

Before he was even six months old I could let him outside my apartment while I grilled and he wouldn’t run away. He’d walk around the courtyard and look in windows and doors while the rest of the cats that others’ owned sat there and watched from behind the glass. I’d bring him outside while I read on a picnic table and he’d just stroll around or chill.

One of my neighbors told me once that I was the envy of the complex because of the little guy.

He’s now three and playful and awesome as ever. Tonight at the table we had six seats made up at the dinner table. Myself, my folks and my two siblings and one for Boo. He sat there while the rest of us ate. Every once in a while I’d cut up some lobster or steak for the little guy and he’d wolf it down. Then he’d paw at me until I’d give him some more.

He got a good amount of lobster; I’m not really a seafood guy anyway.

4 – Tonight at the dinner table, though, I did feel a good amount of sadness.

Steak and lobster. That’s the usual holiday or birthday meal in the King household. There’s typically a good amount of scraps left over for the pets and tonight, when I was finishing up, I started putting together what would be left for our dog Bo. Only I quickly realized that Bo wasn’t with us anymore.

This was the first Christmas in 15 years that Bo wouldn’t be helping out with the leftovers and it hit me like a truck. I’d write more about my feelings on that tonight but nothing seems worthy of his memory.

#5 My Top 10 Christmas Flicks:

10 – Gremlins
Uhh, one of the first movies I remember watching and I love it and all…but…it’s a horror flick.

9 – Bad Santa
The fact that there’s a holiday movie where the best line is, “You ain’t gonna shit right for a week” is a testament to how shallow this list is.

8 – National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation
“Play ball!”

7 – Love, Actually
There’s a damn porn scene in this one. Great flick, but I won’t be showing it to the kids one day.

6 – Die Hard
Probably the second best flick on the list, but as a Christmas movie this is as high as I can put it. Yippee-k….

5 – George C. Scott’s A Christmas Carol
It only took five movies to get to the first serious holiday flick…

4 – Home Alone
…and then it’s fucked up by that kid who yells and sets traps for robbers.

Great flick, though.

My dad has only taken my brother and I to two flicks in our lifetimes. This was one of ’em. The other was Rambo III.

3 – Mickey’s Christmas Carol
God damn I loved this 25 minute masterpiece.

2- A Charlie Brown Christmas
Words won’t describe the greatness when Chuck and the gang hang around outside the tiny little tree at then end. Hell, even I start singing.

1 – It’s a Wonderful Life
I could recite this flick but I still well-up when Mr. Gower realizes George saved lives in the drugstore.

I chuckle when they dance over the pool.

My heart sinks when they vote to save the savings and loan but only if George sticks around.

“I’ll love you ’til the day I die.”

Donna Reed beaming when the town comes to help George at the end of the flick and his brother toasting to his wonderful life.

The perfect flick.

Clay Matthews III makes me giggle like a little girl

I wasn’t a fan when the Packers moved up to get an overachieving DE/LB with average stats and great bloodlines last April. I would have gone elsewhere. I thought Matthews would be great on special teams and average (AJ Hawk-like) on defense.

I’m glad to be wrong. The guy is the 2nd most untouchable player on the Packers and front-runner for Defensive Rookie of the Year. His motor is other-worldly. He’s got stupid closing speed. He’s strong as fuck.

Do I have a serious man-crush? Yes. Yes I do.

Alright, I’m glad I got that out of the way.

We now bring you back to your regularly scheduled heterosexual activities.

(almost) 10 Things

1 – Have you ever gotten so drunk that you can’t decipher between a memory and a dream? Yea, I know how bad that sounds.

On the drive home from the Cities this morning I thought I remembered something that happened at the bar last night and I thought to myself how awesome it was. But the more I thought about it the less likely it seemed to have occurred. It just seemed so out of place regardless of how drunk everyone was. So now I’m sitting here and I’m wondering if I just dreamt it.

I have no idea.

2 – Easiest sign that I’ve watched too much TV over the last year: I ate raw beef tenderloin last night.

I had no idea what I was ordering at the restaurant we ate dinner at. But I remember seeing an episode of Top Chef where a contestant won with something called a beef carpaccio. I didn’t remember exactly what it was but I don’t get the opportunity to try something new every day so I gave it a shot.

What arrived on my plate was an incredibly thin slice of meat, and it was raw. On top of the meet was a mixture of olive-oil, salt, pepper, goat cheese, spinach and arugula. I tried it, and I shouldn’t have had another bite. It was like liquified meat and truly disgusting.

My dinner

That was my dinner.

2b – I told Liza that I was gonna need to do a shot of straight vodka to kill the taste from my mouth. Once we were back to the hotel I did just that.

2c – It occurred to me that something so nasty could be an easy way to drop weight. Come dinner time take a couple bites of beef carpaccio. You won’t want to eat anything for the rest of the night.

Appetite destroyed.

3 – Two highlights from last night. One being the thing I think I remember but I’m not 100% sure really happened.

The other was waking up in the middle of the night because some random dude that came home with all of us was snoring like a chainsaw. He was keeping everyone awake. I grabbed my pillow and proceeded to beat the holy hell out of him with it.

The guy didn’t even react. He was so stoned-drunk he just kept snoring away. So I grabbed a blanket and pillow and passed out in the bathtub. Left the snoring guy to irritate the rest of the room.

4 – Tough loss tonight. I didn’t expect the Packers to win, not for a single moment in the game. Even after they scored the go-ahead TD my first thought was, “Dammit, he should have gone down at the one yard line, there’s too much time left”.

Sure enough, those two minutes were just enough time for Roethlisberger to go the length of the field, aided by terrible coaching and crummy penalties by the Packers.

4b – Games like this, though, are why I love sports. It’s why anyone loves sports. That last minute of football seemed like a motherfucking lifetime for Packer fans. Every second was an eternity. Fans were watching with their hearts in the pits of their stomachs.

Find me something else that brings out this kind of emotion on a regular basis.

5 – Speaking of emotion, ‘scared-shitless’ is an emotion right?

It’s a terrible feeling when you’re driving in high-speed four-lane traffic and you can’t see out of your windshield. Such was the case this morning on my way out of Minnesota and the Cities. We got a fair amount of snow last night and the city had been out salting the roads. Unbeknownst to me, my windshield wiper fluid was 99% gone. After two minutes on Interstate 94, I knew.

My windshield was absolutely caked. Using the wipers made it worse. I was spitting on my hand and trying to wipe off spots on the windshield so I could see while driving . I wanted to take an exit and get to a gas station but I couldn’t read the signs above the roads. I could barely make out the cars in front of me.

I ended up making it to Hudson alight, obviously. But those twenty minutes were hell.

6 – iTunes has a list of your top 25 most played songs. If you don’t try and manipulate the playcounts it’s usually a good representation of the music you dig.

Mine, with the playcount in parentheses:

1 – Thrice – Come all you weary (135)
2 – Socialburn – Pretend (119)
3 – Something Corporate – Down (118)
4 – The Veronicas – Untouched (116)
5 – Paramore – Pressure (111)
6 – Taylor Swift – Should’ve said no (110)
7 – Thrice – The Whaler – (110)
8 – The Veronicas – I can’t stay away – (108)
9 – Jojo – Let it rain (99)
10 – Fuel – Halos of the sun – (97)
11- Three Days Grace – Pain – (92)
12 – Damone – Overchay with me – (89)
13 – Dustin Kensrue – Please come home – (89)
14 – Paramore – Decoy – (88)
15 – Ne-yo – Because of you – (87)
16 – Paramore – Stop this song – (87)
17 – Avant – Lie about us – (86)
18 – Senses Fail – Can’t be saved – (85)
19 – Thrice – red sky (84)
20 – The Veronicas – Leave me alone (81)
21 – Midtown – Your love (80)
22 – Augustana – Stars and boulevards (78)
23 – Socialburn – Utopia (78)
24 – The Wreckers – Tennessee (77)
25 – Ben Jelen – Come on (76)

Some notes…

• Other than Come All You Weary, Red Sky and Pain I don’t think any of the other songs would rank in the best songs I’ve heard in the last three years.

Should’ve Said No was the first Taylor Swift song I’d heard, which is probably why it’s so high. Overall I think it’s maybe her fifth or sixth best song.

• True to form, a strong showing by women on the the list. 10 songs featuring female leads.

Lie About Us was one of my favorite tunes for a three month stretch a year ago and I nearly wore my headphones out listening to it. Then I just stopped liking it for one reason or another and I don’t think I’ve listened to it five times in the last year.

• Jojo? Really? I love that tune but 99 times? I hope I was playing the song, hit repeat and put down the headphones for two hours.

• Good bets to make the top 25 in the next year:

1 – Orianthi – Bad News
2 – Kings of Leon – Sex on Fire
3 – Lupe Fiasco – Hip Hop Saved My Life
4 – Plumb – Damaged
5 – Rise Against – Savior

7 – This blog is the reason my movie and TV watching is behind. I’ve got DVD rips of The Box, Avatar, Surrogates, Paranormal Activity and seasons of Dexter, HIMYM and Californication on my hard drive. But anything requiring attention is put on the back-burner when I’m writing.

So instead of catching up on shows my pals tell me are amazing, I watch repeats of The West Wing or movies I’ve already seen. Inglourious Basterds has been a solid choice lately.

7b – Brad Pitt is the most underrated actor in Hollywood.

I know it’s reasonable to say that someone like David Strathairn or Paul Giamatti or William Fichtner could get the vote, but can you give me one of their truly memorable roles? Can you think of a role where they truly stole every scene they were in or you bothered to watch a movie numerous times simply because of the role they played?

I give you:

– Interview With a Vampire (vampire)
– Se7en (who doesn’t have that final scene ingrained in their heads? who else can you see pulling that off?)
– 12 Monkeys (insane eco-terrorist)
– Meet Joe Black (either his worst performance or one of his best…I don’t know. But the guy played Death
– Fight Club (Tyler-f’ing-Durden)
– Snatch (easily my favorite acting performance ever. I’ll be watching this flick forever and the major reason is Pitt)
– Snatch (I’m listing it twice. It was that awesome. I feel like I should be watching it right now)
– The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford (probably his best performance ever but I hated the flick)
– Inglourious Basterds (steals every scene. It’s amazing)

I loved him in Ocean’s 11, Troy, Benjamin Button and Mr. and Mrs. Smith.

I know people will always rag on the guy for getting by on his looks, but he’s so goddamn good as an actor and will never get the credit he deserves.

7c – Watching Inglourious Basterds right now. Definitely one of the more entertaining movies I’ve seen this year.

8 – Cutting it short at eight things. G’night folks.

It’s 3:00 am and I don’t have a witty or clever title. Goodnight folks.

Just something quick regarding what I read tonight…

1 – I love Mark Cuban.

I used to despise the guy when all I knew him as was a boorish NBA owner who ran onto the court to piss and moan and bitch at the refs. Then I realized he was like any other person who struck it rich and decided that instead of reading about the moves his favorite team made he’d make them himself.

Now he’s one of the world’s richest fans and he’s doing what every guy who enjoys sports would love to do for a living: he runs a professional sports team, talks trash with opposing players, hams it up with fans and does it while sitting court-side in jeans.

I think that’s basically awesome.

But he’s also pretty fucking brilliant. You don’t pioneer video on the web and sell it for a shit-ton without having having some ammunition above the neck.

He’s got himself a blog (and a FB account and a Twitter feed in case you’re wondering). Some of it is above my pay-grade but I follow along and I read with interest when he writes something new.

An entry from a few days ago caught my attention.

He wrote about motivation, a topic I’ve recently covered.

I loved it. But it was a quote at the end that made me stop and think:

“Success is about making your life a special version of unique that fits who you are.”

I like that. I like that a lot.

2 – It got me thinking about my favorite quotes. Four have always stood out, you can find each in my Facebook info. I’m assuming if you’re reading this you’re also a FB pal so check ’em out if you like. Three of them start…

“Every morning in Africa…”
“I’m growing very weary…”
“The things you learn in maturity…”

I got them from my dad’s office. For as long as I can remember, they’ve been framed on his walls or sitting at his desk, no matter what job he’s held. I remember, vividly, being a young elementary school kid in Rice Lake and walking to his office after classes were finished. When I got there I’d sit while he worked and look at everything in his office. I used to love the copy machine a few doors down. I’d bring pictures and booklets from Nintendo games and he’d make blown up copies for my walls at home.

But what stood out most were the three quotes from above. I had them memorized by the time I was seven years old. Even if I hadn’t committed them to memory they followed him from office to office as we moved. Schools changed, artwork changed, pictures changed, awards changed. Those three framed quotes didn’t. Just simple black type on white paper in cheap frames. They always made their way to prominent places in the old man’s office.

I like to think of myself as a traditionalist, so that’s what I brought with me to my job in EC, the town I was born in. Those same three quotes, the same kind of black frame prominently displayed around my desk.

3 – The last quote is one I picked up on my own. Over ten years ago Bret Easton Ellis published Glamorama. It wasn’t his most commercially successful by any means and it was absolutely slammed by reviewers. I picked it up because I had previously read American Psycho and The Rules of Attraction and they both made me fall in love with writing. The things that Ellis did were so unlike anything I’d ever seen. He made me wonder what could be done if conventions were challenged and laws of prose were broken.

Unfortunately, Glamorama sort of sucked. The writing was interesting, the plot wasn’t.

But for whatever reason, one quote stood out:

“you show the world things and in showing the world you teach it what you want”

I actually remember where I was when I read it. I remember putting the book down and thinking about what Ellis had written. What he meant, why he might have buried it in a absurd chapter in a shitty novel.

But the quote stuck out to me. I thought about it a lot and it made sense. Everything you do in life is some sort of reflection of what you want everyone to know about you and how you want them to perceive the world around them. Whether you do it consciously or not, you’re influencing others.

I don’t know. I just thought it was cool concept.

3b – Before I wrote this I re-read the chapter in Glamorama that the quote comes from. If you want to experience a literary roller coaster just check out chapter 34 and try to keep up.

Sanity’s just another dream away

Alright, a quick hitter.

1- Well today was Exhibit A on why living in Wisconsin blows four months of the year.

Three weeks ago I was golfing.

This morning I got stuck in an intersection outside my place because I was going slightly up hill in eight inches of unplowed snow. My little Toyota didn’t stand a chance. I had to put the car in reverse, find the first driveway I could roll up, put the car in drive and slingshot my way through what I hoped would be an open intersection.

A block later I skidded my way halfway into a major intersection and was nearly killed by a jeep going 45 mph.

Then I broke two traffic laws when I went through a red light and made an illegal turn because at the moment no one was coming and I had enough momentum to move.

So then I finally get to work and notice a distinct lack of vehicles in the parking lot. I tried to slow down and make the turn (I was again driving on an unplowed road) and I couldn’t. No way could I have gone in reverse so I just kept on driving and hoped to do better the second time around.

When I finally made it in, there were five of the 25 SP employees around. Apparently some of us got calls that there wasn’t any school today. A simple email to the staff wouldn’t have sufficed?

Meh. Whatever.

Like I said, the weather in this state blows.

2 – You reap what you sow. As much as I hate referring to anything biblical, I think it holds true. Treat people with kindness and respect and good things will come about. Treat people carelessly and it’s going to come back to bite you in the ass.

When it does, don’t expect a motherfucking pity-party from me.

3 – Monday night made me a believer in the Packers D. Clay Matthews Jr is a freaking stud. Raji had his best game as a pro. Brad Jones looked like a potential impact player. Three stud starters in the front seven from one draft alone? Possible.

4 – I’d love for someone to give me a reason why people can’t be open and honest in a relationship. Whether it’s 17 years of marriage, four months of dating or someone you’ve only been seeing casually, recent evidence suggests that people would rather be shut-off or lie than just say what’s on their minds.

It wasn’t a good weekend for a few of the King boys in this regard.

5 – I should be in danger of getting burned out on Orianthi, but I don’t see that happening any time soon.

Suffocated is probably the best song I’ve heard this year.

I love it. Lyrics, riffs, vocals. Yea it’s straight forward but what it does it does well.

Second favorite tune on the album is Drive Away. It’s got some blues guitar going on and it’s a mellow change up from some of her other good tunes.

Here’s an acoustic version I’m digging:

There are two or three songs I’m not in love with, but top to bottom this is the best thing I’ve heard all year. If you pick it up and want to go straight to the goods, here’s how I’m ranking the songs.

1 – Suffocated

2 – Drive Away
3 – Bad News
4 – According to You

5 – Feels like Home
6 – Think like a Man

7 – Highly Strung

8 – God Only Knows
9 – Untogether
10 – Believe

11 – What’s it gonna be

The top four are basically awesome, with Suffocated a strong candidate to make my all-time list. Five, six and seven are definitely solid. Highly Strung is a good instrumental. After that the album falls off a cliff but only What’s it Gonna Be is unlistenable.

6 – Am I the only person who didn’t find Arrested Development to be remotely entertaining?

I ask because I recently read a list of the top 20 shows of the decade and I hated the top two, The Wire and AD. The Wire is coma inducing and Arrested Development was the equivalent of watching three retarded chimps picking feces out of each other’s hair.

But if you say you didn’t enjoy AD it’s like you insulted someone’s mother. I’ve never seen a group get so defensive as I have when said I didn’t think it was a funny show.

7 – Another reason my stay in Wausau was dope: my power bill in the winter. I lived in an upper, a nice one, when I was over there. I didn’t turn the heat on once that winter. My power bill was around $24 every month. They actually credited me because I used such little electricity.

Over here my bill is five times as much. What the fuck is going on?

8 – Last weekend was absolutely awful. Maybe one of the worst I’d had in years. On Sunday I was looking forward to getting back to work.

This weekend is gonna be different. No traveling, no hosting guests. Doing nothing will never seem so relaxing.

9 – Your word of the day is ‘somnambulant’. My text editor doesn’t like it but Merriam’s does. So does Strung Out when they wrote a song I love.

10 – 2:40 in the morning. G’night folks.

Yes, no, maybe so

Ladies and gentlemen, we have a guest blogger tonight. She’s a delightful tart, so read her observations on life and relationships here.

Without further ado…

I’ve decided that, in dating, there is no other response more irritating than “maybe” when it comes to making plans. What does maybe mean? You deign to spend time with me if nothing better comes along? Are you playing a game? “Yes” I get. It means, “I would love to hang out with you, thanks for asking.” Although “no” can be a little muggy, is still decipherable. If you legitimately have plans, it just means “no.” If you have no plans, it simply means “I don’t want to see you.” Either way it is much clearer than “maybe.”

If you give me a “maybe” because you potentially have plans but nothing has solidified, I can grasp that. However, if your “maybe” is vaguely dependent on your mood that day, then forget it. I don’t need to be waiting on you to make a decision about my plans. If you don’t think I’m worth hanging out with when you have absolutely nothing better to do, then I’m sorry, but you aren’t worth my time when you do decide to make plans with me.

Being “maybed” puts you in such an uncomfortable position. Do you bring the subject up again? Do you even bother contacting the person in the meantime? I hate how much control I lose with a “maybe” answer.

Just yesterday, for the first time I asked a guy I’m seeing if he would like to do something this weekend. In the entire time we’ve been dating, I have never once initiated a phone call or a date. I didn’t want to put myself in the position where he could turn me down. But, I’ve started to like him and I have been thinking maybe I should be making more of an effort. So I floated an idea by him thinking there is no way he is going to say “no” if he isn’t busy. He has pursued me steadily for months now, so why in the world would he decline?

However, the answer I got was much worse than a flat-out “no.” He said “maybe.” My mind has been trying to grasp just what that means for the past couple days. In regard to the questions I posed earlier I decided that, no, I would not be bringing the subject up again. And, no, I will not be initiating contact with him in the interim. I actually made plans for the “maybe” day. Not really sure where this is going to land me but I know that I am fairly interested to see how this is going to pan out. Both for myself and for him.

Better late than never

When I was about five or six years old my uncles gave me a CD. Heart’s Bad Animals was one of the first albums I owned and I loved it. Shortly thereafter I watched a music video for Alone and immediately knew, “Yup, I’m into girls. Girls are what’s for me”.

It was Nancy Wilson. I considered her the sexiest thing alive before I even knew what that meant and ever since I’ve had an affinity for chick rock. The Go-Gos, Belinda Carlisle, Bonnie Raitt, Tsunami Bomb, Avril, Michelle Branch, Jessica Harp, Kelly Clarkson, Evanescence. You name it…

Twenty-plus years later we finally have someone to take the mantle away from Nancy, though.

Orianthi fucking rocks. I’ve been listening to her album Believe all afternoon and, to put it simply, I’m blown away. She can sing her ass off, she’s shreds on guitar and, yea, she’s hot.

Best of all, though, her tunes are actually good.

I was digging her first track “According to you” fairly quickly. It’s her first single. Youtube it. Then I heard “Suffocated” and my eyebrows raised. By “Bad News” I was hooked and the album just stayed consistently solid throughout.

Guitar fans, give “Highly Strung” a listen. It’ll rocks your balls off.

Somebody’s Going to Emergency, Somebody’s Going to Jail

1 – Tonight I did one of the more heartbreaking things I’ve ever had to do. I was sent a letter entirely about the dissolution of a close family member’s marriage. It happened very recently, very suddenly. One minute he thought he was in a happy relationship of almost twenty years. 15 seconds later it all ended and his life was ruined.

The letter was an account of how it all came about and the effect it’s had on all parties, including the two young kids.

The letter needed to be edited. Grammatically correct. Language cleaned up. Not gonna lie, some of the emotion had to be dulled. It’s going to be seen by someone who’s used to seeing documents of a kind of standard.

Part of me wishes I wouldn’t have touched it. Does the letter have a greater impact with punctuation marks, misplaced modifiers, colloquial phrases and shifts in tense? Maybe it sounds like it’s coming from a husband who’s weeks removed from losing what he loved the most.

Maybe that’s how the letter should have read.

I don’t know.

1b – Is it a bad sign that when I got the news of what happened I wasn’t surprised? I didn’t have any significant feelings of hatred or outrage? I still don’t, even after finding out all the specifics of the situation. I feel terrible for the kids and for the man who’s life has been ruined, but anger and hatred and shock and disgust aren’t in the range of emotions that I’ve experienced.

It’s not that I expect to ever hear about situations like these, it’s just that when it does happen it doesn’t seem to matter who it happens to, I don’t react like I’ve been blind-sided or the air has suddenly left the room.

The question that I’m sure has plagued other members of my family, “How could she ever do this” has never entered my mind. It’s just the way things are, I suppose.

1c – Maybe that leads me into my next topic: Tiger Woods.

Again, not a single thing about this story has made me bat an eye. To recap, Tiger Woods, the world’s most famous and wealthy athlete, has allegedly been having an affair with a woman for the past couple years. Three other women have come out and said they have been with him too.

TMZ, the Post, Deadspin, the Sun-Times, ESPN, SI….they’ve been all over this shit for a week. You can’t go to any news site or big time blog and not get hammered with the sordid details of Tiger’s supposedly private (HA!) life.

My questions are thus:

1 – How can anyone possibly be surprised that a young, wealthy, insanely famous, successful person that spends the majority of their life on the road could be unfaithful?

2 – Why does Woods owe anyone other-than his family an apology?

3 – Why should you care?

Tiger fucked up. No doubt. But Jordan screwed around. So did Brett Favre. So did Kobe. So did a motherfucking President of the United States. So have countless other public figures that we love to hold to a higher standard.

In the case of Woods, he never professed to being man of the year. He’s out there hocking Nike products, Gillette razors and Buicks. When he wasn’t he was kicking ass on the gold course. Outside of that…what did anyone really know of him? The guy likes his Privacy (caps for a reason; that’s what Tiger named his yacht).

Nobody is perfect. People fuck up. You feel bad for those they hurt but try not to crucify someone for acting on human impulse or because they had a moment of weakness. Everyone has fucked up in some way or another. The most you can hope for is they learn from their mistakes.

1d – Violent crime is the exception. Sorry, lock ’em up.