Hey yinz guys, today’s Daily Post asks us to find a word and a sound that go together as if they were made for one another. I got this.
The word “curt” means “rudely brief in speech or abrupt in manner.” It’s a short and snappy word with a short and snappy sound.
This is a word that most straight guys learn by their late teens or early twenties. Usually in a scenario resembling this one:
GUY: Is something the matter? What’s bothering you?
GIRL: Nothing, I’m fine.
DId you see that? She gave a curt answer to your question. In fact, the answer is significant in what it doesn’t say. As in, what she didn’t say was:
“Not only have you done and/or said something to offend me but you have also failed to recognize this fact. You are now on Double Secret Probation, Mister. The best you can hope for is a cold shoulder for the rest of the night and the worst thing that might happen to you is that this relationship could very well be over unless you at least wise up enough to start grovelling for my forgiveness.”
And that is how many guys come to know this word even if they’ve never heard of it before.
For your entertainment, here’s Mr. Todd Rundgren singing about Onomatopoeia:
Every Monday night I go to a meditation group. We meditate for twenty minutes, read passages from the book on spirituality that we are reading at the time, discuss what we read, and then meditate for another twenty minutes. I’ve been going to this groups since its inception at the beginning of 2013. It’s been helpful in some ways, but it has its ups and downs. Some days, I sit and am able to just glide along, my thoughts still there but in the background. Other days, I struggle mightily. Today was the latter. Rather than focusing on my breath and just letting my thoughts flow without getting caught up in them, this is what I had running through my mind:
- God my one coworker is annoying. I know I should be more tolerant but that voice just booms and carries and she doesn’t stop talking. Just…chill. Please.
- I’m not a very generous person today.
- Wow, Guardians of the Galaxy was a great movie! I wonder if Bautista will be on Raw tonight to promote the film? Not that it needs any help!
- I wonder what the new Great Old One Pact Warlock will play like in D&D Next? I think it’d be pretty interesting if a character with that pact couldn’t use his or her powers against certain Aberrant creatures. After all, why would an entity granting you a measure of its power let it use that power against it? Huh, that’d be an interesting way to house-rule things.
- I can’t quite get comfortable tonight. How do people sit in the Lotus position so perfectly? It looks so simple but I’ve nary a clue. Jeez my ankle gets sore.
- Maybe I shouldn’t have run before I came here tonight. But, when else was I going to get the chance? I need to keep up with it. I’ve already paid for a marathon in the fall. Gotta stick with it.
- I can’t get a read on the woman who helps to run the group. I know we only went out for about six weeks back in 2012, and it ended because I was going through a pretty dark time. But does she still think about me? I wouldn’t care, but, oh yeah, I’m Co-Dependent Guy. Plus, she is very cute and generally got it together. And the dating scene in Harrisburg is barren. And, I’ve got some good qualities myself. It’s just a little strange sometimes, by which I mean most of the time. We’re cordial, but in an arms-length kind of way. I still wonder, though.
- Maybe I should find another group because of this.
- But I like it here, complication and all.
- When I get home, I still have some work to do. By work, I mean take out the garbage, do some exercising, and some writing. None of that is really ‘work’ mind you, but I know how I get.
- Plus, I’m really tired.
- That reminds me, I gotta work on my sleep hygeine some more. Why do I, as a middle-aged man, have to remind myself of things like this? Why did I still get mad at myself?
- Huh, this would make for a good blog post. I hope I remember enough of it.
- Plus a few other things that were running through my head, no doubt.
- And through it all, a few random notes of Lana del Rey’s “West Coast” keep playing in the back of my mind almost constantly. I don’t even know if I like that song, yet there it is.
And that’s what was rushing and pinging through my little ADHD brain. I’m a long way from Nirvana.
So, yeah, some days are better than others. So much for And, there’s the fact that making this a daily practice is something that hasn’t taken hold yet. It’s been challenging. But, I keep going on Monday nights. Part of it has to do with need, I’ll grant that. But, I go mainly (oh, say 95% mainly) for the benefits I get from it – stress reduction, focus, and interacting with an eclectic group of people I don’t normally see in my day-to-day life. I still try to sit down and meditate on my own from time-to-time. I’ve made this a part of my routine, so something’s taken hold. I just have to stick with it and then keep hoping I know where and how to take the next step. I think, I hope.
The Dog Days of August will soon be upon us. But until then, it’s been a surprisingly gentle July, perfect weather for scopin’ out what my fellow Harrisburgers (No, we ain’t edible, and you ain’t Chuck Heston, so quit askin’.) and assorted other SCPA (respec’, yo!) types are sportin’ on their automobiles. I bet it’s something interesting, something clever, something all kinds of witty, no doubt about it. Of course, I’ve also bet that the Jacksonville Jaguars are gonna win the Super Bowl this season, so my judgement might be a little off. Still, see for yourselves:
Riddles abound this week. Well, ok, one riddle abounds. Eh, I’ll take it. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have go write more potty-mouthed posts since that seems to be what you people want.
I will add the hyperlinks later. You have WordPress.com’s Writing 201: Finding Your Story to blame for this. I ain’t even gonna edit it ’til later. I’m just a Blogger Gone Wild tonight. Woo-hoo! Just write, they say. Or rather, they write. Still, the point stands. Just get it all down onto paper, er, the screen. And so here I am, typing away hoping for something that comes to mind that will overcome this accursed, Verdammt writer’s block. SIDE NOTE: Did you see my use of German? Aren’t I clever?
Random thoughts: She was an idiot. She still is, but she was a great fuck. I mean, I don’t know exactly why, but goddamn! did we have some chemistry! I mean, yeah, it was good. And I was happy for a while. Happy, content. This never happens to me. I mistook it for love perhaps. Or, perhaps, there really was something there. It’s possible that there was. Four years on and I pine like a fool. No, not like a fool. I was happy. And that counted for something in my life, both then and now. And where else, when else, am I gonna find a hot nerd like her that I share that kind of chemistry with. It wasn’t just the sex, it may have been that primarily, but it wasn’t just that. We kind of got each other. Unfortunately that has meant that I came to understand that she is not interested in a real, long-term commitment that would involve actually working at things and just showing up every few weekends for a sexual pit stop. All of this brings me something that my sister pointed out to me a few months ago. She said that maybe it’s not a particular woman who I’m missing so much as how I felt at the time I was with that woman. This could explain a lot. Still, I’m not getting any younger. SIDE NOTE: I know that one isn’t supposed to end a sentence in a preposition, but what are you gonna do about that, huh? I got my meaning across, and that’s the point, yeah?
Israel is catching Hell over their current invasion of Gaza. And it stands to reason that the outcry will continue. Graphic pictures of the Gaza Strip come back almost instantaneously, and however vile Hamas has been and continues to be (hiding rockets in a U.N. school is not Kosher, if you’ll pardon the expression) the response is seen by those sympathetic to and supportive of Israel (myself included) as entirely disproportionate. It was also founded upon a false casus belli, we’ve come to find out. But that doesn’t matter. Israel is playing a long game here. They will continue until…, well until they have reached some goal. How firmly fixed that goal is in the Israeli government’s mind is something that will have to wait until someone’s memoirs (Netanyahu’s, most prominently) comes out. But I would hazard a guess that the goals are, broadly speaking, to weaken Hamas to the point where they aren’t able to wage any sort of sustained terror campaign for several years and to demonstrate to the Palestinians living in Gaza that the cost of supporting Hamas is too high for them to bear. These are hardly original thoughts, but I think it stands to reason. Israel’s come this far, they’re not going to quit until they have what they want. You can’t make an omelette without breaking a few eggs, after all. Besides, their government probably (correctly) figures that in about three months, if that, we’ll all be fixated on another part of the Middle East, like, say, Libya, or Syria, or Iraq, or Egypt, or, oh, Lebanon, or Iran, or so on and so forth. Plus, it’ll closer to the November, and that means election time here in the U.S. and A. And that means that Bibi’s buds in the GOP could be in strong enough shape to hamper President Obama now and possibly even impeach later (for him being, y’know, African-American), which mean s even more freedom from political pressure from the U.S. And the who the Hell else is gonna stop them? So, yeah, that’s how it is.
I guess I’ve found some sort of voice as I’ve been here hammering this out while having to pee for the past 20 minutes. So, I guess one dam has yet to break. That ends now. Excuse me for a moment. Okay, I’m back.
I’m watching Nathan For You and he’s talking about his Dumb Starbucks prank. He’s basically pulled an Andy Kaufman with that. People have tried it before. But they fail 99.9% of the time. Nathan Fielder did. Fucker. Thank you, good night for now, and, remember, profanity is awesome!
Oh, and here’s a picture of cat. The Internet loves pictures of cats.
That should do it for now.
So, I signed up for WordPress’ Writing 201 in the hopes of sharpening my writing abilities a bit. I have been starting at the screen on and off for a week and have nothing to show for it except a case of writer’s block. This is not fun.
Oh well, on to @Midnight’s Hashtag Wars. I can write those just fine.
Food for thought.
So the Daily Post asks us about a certain particular smell or smells and the memories they can trigger.
For me, that smell is the smell of old books. Both of my parents, God rest their souls, were avid readers, so we always had books around the house. And, my mother was also the librarian at my high school. I guess over time I’ve come to associate the smell of old books with home and family. That, or I just like the smell.
This is probably one of the reasons I like hanging out at the Midtown Scholar so much. The smell makes it feel homey.
And now, some science. Read below:
I was right all these years, even when the occasional Philistine would look at me as if I were the crazy one for asking him (it has almost always been another guy) if he liked the smell of old books too. Yay me!
Stormy days and summer haze continue unabated. And so does the appearance of vanity plates here in the Harrisburg/South Central Pennsylvania region. They just don’t end. I should just unwind and let the lazy, hazy days of summer drift by, but these tiny tributes to…whatever it is they’re paying tribute to keep popping up like mushrooms. Maybe there really is a conspiracy of some sort. I’m still not 100% convinced that this all a coincidence. One doth wonder.
Gee whiz but it’s hot in South Central Pennsylvania these days. Summer is here and the time is right, for vanity plates in the street!
I’m torn. I’m either getting more timid or more judicious as I set out to recorded the automotive naming gaffes of South Central PA’s motorists. I lean towards the latter, but I can’t help but feel as if I’m holding back. Luckily, there still seem to be enough vanity plates out there to give me plenty of time and opportunities to make up my mind. But, enough woolgathering! Here’s this week’s selection:
Sooo, today’s Daily Post asks for a memorable moment involving a sporting event. Some of these prompts are tricky, but not this. I got this one covered.
It was June of 1992 and the Pittsburgh Penguins just swept the Chicago Blackhawks to win the Stanley Cup. Woo Hoo! My friends and were at a bar in the Oakland section of Pittsburgh when this happened. Like almost everyone else, we poured out of the bar, down the stairs, and out into the street to hoot and holler with everyone else around. It was your typical evening of (thankfully minor league) mayhem that follows a sports championship. After a few minutes of jumping and cheering, my 21 year-old self looked at some of the other loonies that had climbed on top of a city bus. “What a great idea. I wanna do that too!” my youthful, drunken, and possibly, er, “smoked out” self thought. And so, I made my climb via the back of the bus to its top. Boy oh boy, was I having fun! But then, I heard warnings from below that the cops were coming. Uh-oh. Better get outta there! I looked down and two strangers told me to jump. “Come on! We’ll catch you!” they cried out. “No no no, I’m good man!” I yelled back (or something to that effect) and then hopped off the bus. And then, POP! I felt something snap in my left ankle. There was a brief flash of pain but then that was gone and replaced with a swelling numbness and an inability to stand on that leg. As others were either still celebrating I found myself in a state of panic and possibly mild shock as I limped around the street yelling “CHAS!!! CHAS!!!” as I looked for my college roommate. I eventually found him and one of his fraternity brothers after what seemed like an eternity (read: 5-10 minutes). The next I remember is limping into his car and going to the nearest emergency room. One long, painful wait later, and I found myself fitted with a nice plaster cast. I would be wearing it for the next six weeks. During that time, I learned about the unique pleasures of showering while injured, hobbling around on crutches, and why pencils and rulers are your best friend when you get an itch beneath a cast. It wasn’t my greatest moment, to be sure. Still, my sister pointed out to me a few years ago that I was just being young and stupid and that I should just laugh about it. Plus, she pointed out, it makes for a good story. And she was right. And there you have it, that’s my story involving a sporting event.
Today’s Daily Prompt asks how we in the Northern Hemisphere plan on taking advantage of today, the longest day of the year.
My plan is to keep nursing this damned hangover. Naproxen, electrolytes, and moving slowly are the ‘cures’ I will be employing. Ok, the last one isn’t so much a cure as an acknowledgement of reality, but you get the point. With any luck that will get better by this evening and I will be able to take a nice stroll along Riverfront Park here in Harrisburg, for example.
As for the sunlight, who doesn’t like long summer days? Vampires, maybe, but that’s about it. I don’t miss the winter and its short days one bitty bit.
Seven weeks in and it’s rolling along. I’m starting to wonder. Maybe there’s no grand conspiracy after all. Maybe this area just has an abnormally high and wholly unjustified high regard for itself. That might be what leads to all of these plates surfacing around here. Or maybe that’s what “They” want me to think. Hmmmm…
At any rate, here’s some more automotive tributes to one’s own self.
And the band played on.
It’s getting heavy. People are on to me and my mission. A few people look at me funny when I record this phenomenon. One lady even asked that I delete a picture that I took. I did. There’s no reason to be rude. All kidding aside, I sometimes forget that we live in troubled times. I think I’m just having fun, but considering what’s happened since 9/11 and our turn towards pervasive surveillance and social media saturation, I can see why some people are on edge. I must be more discreet. I have no desire to get my lights punched out.
Still, the surfeit of vanity in this area is a reality, and I must expose it to the world. *Hums the Battle Hymn of the Republic*
So, Writing 101 bids us to write about loss. I could get into some heavy stuff, but I prefer to keep it light tonight. So, let me tell yinz about a mix tape that went *poof* just as it was taking shape.
It was the spring of 1991, and there weren’t no interwebs. No sir, if you wanted to mix and match songs, you hadda go out and record ’em off of another cassette or CD. You hadda work for it! It took not only time and effort to record each song but it was often a challenge to search for and physically gather the music you wanted to record also. It could take weeks. As a result, it often became a challenge to build one that stood out. Sure, you could just blandly copy a favorite release from a friend to save a few bucks or just slap together a few random favorites of yours, but that wasn’t very satisfying in the long run. No, if you wanted something that would satisfy you and impress your friends and (hoped for) loved ones, you had to stretch your creative muscles and put a lot of thought and effort into it.
Now, one route was to build one based on a theme of some sort. It could be, say, a mix tape filled only with songs that featured the saxaphone in them (something you don’t hear a lot of these days – R.I.P. Clarence!) or maybe your best-of alternative breakup songs. Or, you could go for eclecticism. The tape I was building that spring was headed that way.
It started with a trip to Washington D.C. with a friend (He would later become a roommate and in the process a bitter enemy. But that’s another story.) I had made at WPTS, Pitt’s radio station. I was working as a news reader and he was the news director. We hit it off, and so I hopped a ride down to D.C. with him one weekend in late March on a road trip. On the way down and back, he played a most excellently varied tape of his own. It had everything from “Istanbul (Not Constantinople)” to a couple of comedy bits to “Master of the House” from Les Miserables. I was suitably impressed – and inspired. And so, I got to work. I shamelessly borrowed his tape to copy “Istanbul” and “Master” but then followed my muse. I manged to find N.W.A.’s “100 Miles and Running” and included it. Best of all, I managed to get one of my fellow radio station news readers (and also future roommate – also part of that other story) to copy the theme to Late Night With David Letterman. I’m talking the original version that played to the opening of his NBC show, back when he was mean, bitchy, and awesomely hilarious in his own gonzo way. That theme. Oh yeah. He had to go in a record it from the old, blocky 8-track type radio cart tapes onto cassette. That was the icing on the cake. I was on a roll now, I was putting together something special, it was lightning in a bottle.
Or so it might have been. Joe asked to borrow the tape just before the end of spring semester in late April of ’91. I agreed. And that was the end of that. I never saw it again. I should have taken it as dark omen of that guy’s ways, too, but again, that’s another story, and I was young and naive. Still, that loss hurt. Sure, I would go on to make more mix tapes in the years to come, but it was never quite the same. I never had the drive to craft something truly special. My muse had left me by then. I still mourn the loss of that tape, and now, in this era of digital music, it’s too late. Putting together a song list isn’t the same. What takes 5 minutes now could have taken, as I alluded, 5 weeks back then. Farewell, oh fading ember of my youth. You are gone, but never forgotten.
I would have gone with Day 3 of Writing 101’s assignment, but this is more important, so, welcome back to what appears to be a feature with no end in sight. I’m not even trying anymore, they just *appear*. These things seem to be cropping up like mushrooms. Still, I do feel a responsibility to show everyone the truth about this area’s weird vanity plate fetish. So, here we go, again:
The reality of my situation has started to sink in and now I’m just counting the days until the Powers That Be silence my reportage . In the meantime, I feel duty-bound to bear witness to this automotive farce. Riis, Sinclair, Steffins, and Tarbell would have been proud.
I see them everywhere now. This isn’t just a coincidence. I’ve tapped into the hidden, parallel world that we so often miss. This is no coincidence. I’m in Carcosa now.
Seriously, they’re everywhere around here.
It’s too late. I can’t turn back. Pray for me, people. Pray for me.
Every time I turn around, it seems like I see another one. Maybe it’s “Blue Car” syndrome, but I doubt it. No, I think there’s something going on here. Once I saw the truth, there was no going back. Now, I see what’s going on all around me. Now, I must bear witness. Take a look:
And South Central Pennsylvania keeps rollin’ along.
In today’s Daily Post, we are presented with this scenario:
You walk into your home to find a couple you don’t know sitting in your living room, eating a slice of cake. Tell us what happens next.
Next, I would ask “Are you here to kill me?” If they say “Yes”, then my reply would be “Ok, but you do you mind if tidy up a bit first? I don’t want people to find my body in a messy house.” If they say “No”, then my reply would be “Great! Let me tidy up and then we can talk. But first – can I have some cake?”
Day 28 of WordPress’ Zero to Hero guide suggests creating a recurring feature for our blogs. The idea is to create a consistent bit o’ content that will attract viewers. Ok, fair enough. BUT, I do reserve the right to feature something of my choice. And that choice concerns a serious issue facing my corner of the world: the Harrisburg area’s ongoing addiction to vanity plates. I am horrifies but also morbidly fascinated. Take a look:
Where, oh where, will it end?
From today’s Daily Prompt, we get:
Ring of Fire Do you love hot and spicy foods or do you avoid them for fear of what tomorrow might bring?
I actually just had Indian food last night, so I don’t mind some spice – up to a point. BUT, a few years ago, a local Thai restaurant asked me if I want my food “spicy” or “Thai spicy.” I choose the latter. Foolishly. My tongue burned with every bite and I was practically shaking. I think it was even worse when I went back and attempted to conquer the leftovers the next day. I seem to remember my stomach and intestines filing a restraining order against me after that, too. So, again, I like spicy food, but only up to a certain level. All things in moderation, yes?
What are the top three things you’d like to learn, or ways you’d like to grow, from blogging? The top three people you’d like to connect with?
OK, let’s start with the first question. The three things I’d like to learn (for starters) from blogging are:
- How to amuse myself. If I can write something that entertains me and/or makes me laugh, I will have done well for myself. I need to have fun, and I want this blog to be that. (If this turns into a chore, then what’s point? I already have one job, know what I mean?)
- I want to become more technically proficient. I plan on learning enough to be able to migrate this site to WordPress.org. That would push me to learn how to manage web traffic (well, the traffic that I hope for) and an actual website. I also know the basics of HTML, Java Script, and CSS. (Thanks, Codecademy!) Ideally, this site will help me to build on what I’ve already learned.
- I hope to become more connected to the Harrisburg area. I’ve lived here in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania for a little over six years and still don’t feel as connected to it as I’d like to be. My hope is that this blog can help me to network and socialize more than I have in the past, if only a little.
And now, i answer the second question. Just who are the top three people I hope to connect with through this blog?
- Harrisburgers (Harrisburgians?). Again, I’m hoping to come out of my shell a little bit and am hopeful this blog can be a means to that end.
- Smart, experienced bloggers. With any luck, I will be able to connect with those who have good technical expertise, experience with growing one’s audience and improving one’s ‘brand’ (I think I’m starting to hate that word, btw.), and maybe even those who know something about best practices for website design. Here’s hoping!
- I’m a Virgo with a moon in Pisces. I like good coffee, good conversation, and long walks on the beach. If you are celestially compatible and looking for someone who has taken ‘the road less traveled’, then shoot me a message and we can see what happens after that. (My ex-girlfriend need not apply.)
Yinz satisfied now?