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Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Which Indians are Worse -- India's or the Seattles?

August 29, 2012:  I don't know what you did today, but I spent the afternoon yelling at Indians. Ironically, I love Indians -- or, as I call them, the Indian people -- but the bitter maelstrom that has become my communcations life forced me -- yes, it literally forced me -- into waxing violent with these level-headed peace-loving people who wear dots on their collective foreheads for some reason that western man is still struggling to understand.

To begin, I strongly recommend that you never have an "Msn" email account. Thanks to their stupidity -- at least I think it's their stupidity, or it may be someone else's, possibly mine -- but I at least know in this scenario they've acted with a remarkable 21st-century brand of stupidity -- and thanks to that stupidity, I may never see my email account again. This means that all the information that I have stored there -- literally eight-years-worth of letters, notes, files -- everything you could imagine, including some prime examples of erotic art composed entirely from typing the letter "x" over and over in specific patterns -- has been plucked from my world. They assured me today, in fact, (after hanging up on me several times over the course of several hours) that I very well may never see my email again!

So where does this leave me? Well, today's journey began in New Delhi, or so I was told. I even gave this man -- I think he was a man, and his name was either Eric or Ali -- access to my very computer. "You can trust me," he kept saying, because I kept assuring him that I knew full-well that this was all some kind of elaborate scam to screw me -- screw with my mind and steal my identity. (Now, why anyone would want to steal my identity, I can't even begin to imagine, but as we all know, the world is thick with remarkably sick individuals, so the more surprising fact is that more people don't try to steal my identity.)

Where was I? So, this Indian character remoted into my computer, and let me tell you, it was like having a proctologist sticking his finger in your ass. I mean, suddenly someone is moving your cursor about, and he seemed to be poking into all sorts of strange places, and for the life of me I still don't know why. "Don't worry," he kept saying (or at least I think that's what he said, because it was hard to understand that accent, and he may have been saying "Eat curry!").

"How do I know you won't be going on my computer all the time now?" I asked, and while he offered some mumbo-jumbo about passwords and such, I will certainly go to sleep tonight just ASSUMING he's going on there and trying to find my pornography cache (the dirty bastard). And if that isn't enough, imagine my emotional reaction later this evening when I tried to use the computer and the keyboard no longer worked! It turned out to be the battery (because it's one of these stupid wireless invisible floating keyboards or something), but am I really supposed to believe that was a coincidence?! Nice try, New Delhi!!

All I know is that when I tried to sign onto my email yesterday evening, the computer told me someone "may" have been trying to sign on besides me (possibly EJ, more likely Shannon), and so they froze everything until such time as I can PROVE it's actually my account, and etc. and etc.

The problem is, as yet I've been unable to adequately answer their odd collection of questions that would supposedly solve this. These include typing the exact subject lines of emails I've recently sent, as well as a mysterious question about my favorite historical figure that still has me baffled, as I don't have one. (I may have put Orson Welles, but it was so long ago, I'm completely miffed!) Anyway, they're having none of it -- while someone else has the ability to "hack" into my email, clearly I'll never be able to.

Further, they've been unnecessarily difficult about even entertaining my calls to the support line. In fact, one line -- the special one for customers like me who supposedly have some stupid specialized account that costs something-or-other -- simply won't give me a live person. Instead, the recorded woman -- who sounds like someone is lovingly shoving marshmallows up her ass while she's talking to you -- keeps hanging up on me because I'm not providing the right phone number ... The problem is -- as if this isn't a litany of enough problems -- for the life of me, I have no recollection of what phone number started the account so many years ago, and so I can't provide one. It's really quite an extraordinary Catch-22 situation, and if I wasn't so very used to my warped life consisting of literal comedy episode after comedy episode, I'd be more disturbed than I am ...

The bottom line is, when all else fails, rage at the Indians to whom Microsoft has outsourced so many jobs. Honestly, I really don't care, but someone cares, so if it can add to your dislike of Microsoft, I'll gladly push that button. I blame it (and the northwest region) for this whole debacle.

For me, the Indians I've spoked with are lovely, and part of it may simply be that we don't understand one another anyway, and are always too shy to ask what the other actually said, so that makes relating much more joy-filled ... I just spend the conversation alternately thanking them profusely every time they indicate that they're "trying something," and then raging at them after it doesn't work ...

I'm not sure where this leaves me, except I started a "gmail" email account now, but it doesn't seem like there's much point, as I don't have anyone's email address, let alone much motivation to again commit myself -- extend myself -- out into the ether for more of this cyber-screwing.

I did, however, just check that new gmail, and the only email there is is from Microsoft saying that, due to heavy volume, it may now be -- are you ready for this -- 5 TO 7 DAYS before they EVEN RESPOND to the guesses I made about my information, to let me know whether or not they'll let me back in to the account ...

It's all too much, as George Harrison sang. It's all too much. I never knew he was talking about his experiences in India, where his luggage was probably lost, or some such nonsense ...

Anyway, feel free to send sympathetic missives to, and give serious consideration to buying ANOTHER copy of SPACE CASE out of sheer pity, if you don't already own two ...

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Bad Dreams or Good Reality

August 25, 2012:  Requests continue pouring in for further Blah-ugh! entries. Myriad topics remain left untouched and people are starting to worry—my anxiety, my diarrhea, my constipation, my mother, my mother’s constipation, my mother’s mother’s constipation … It’s hard to know where to begin!

Recent events have influenced the direction of my life, meaning the things that happened to me over the past few weeks have directly impacted these last few weeks. (And if you’ve fallen for that mumbo-jumbo, it’s no wonder America’s in the kind of shape it is!)

Which reminds me of a hysterical and simultaneously awful dream I had last night, wherein it was revealed that President Obama was fooling us all by really being a foreigner, and during one symposium he inadvertently began speaking with a heavy west African accent until one of his handlers kind of smacked him really hard on the shoulder and he stopped. (It’s still unclear to me how I knew it was a west Africa accent, and I’m probably a racist for thinking it, although I’m not sure why for that, and it all just goes to demonstrate that I either read too much Joseph Conrad or not enough.)

Anyway, I hate to report negatively on Obama, even though I’ve always suspected his name was somehow linked to terrorism. As many of you know—and even fewer of you care—I’ve literally garnered extensive scientific research demonstrating the fallacy of the Republican platform, and indisputably determined what fallices so many of them are. But at the end of the day, anybody who’d enter politics has got to be deranged. And if they’re not deranged, I’m far too lazy and disinterested to determine otherwise, and so will continue to focus my attention on art, spirituality and photos of naked women on the Internet.

On another note, I’ve been researching trees—not extensively, but I have this great children’s Golden Guide book that provides all the information I need to differentiate an oak from a sycamore. It’s a rather hysterical book, actually, because it emphasizes the importance of trees for the good of mankind, in particular for things like baseball bats, ship masts and tennis rackets. (I keep waiting to read something about the oxygen factor, but I guess they didn’t know about that back in 1969.) I can’t tell you how fascinating I find the identification of trees—at least the ones I know. I consider it a badge of pride that I can handily ID tulips, sycamore and catalpas. Of course, elms are harder, but part of that may be that they’re all wiped out. I’m not sure. After all, it’s only a children’s book.

Finally, I think it’s high time to have our cat fixed. A stolid young gentleman, Bob’s spastic outbursts continue to disrupt family members and cause pillows to be unceremoniously knocked to the floor. I’ve long suspected that the removal of testicles would work miles toward aligning his disposition and bringing him into the family fold. Plus, he’s begun getting a bit rude and forward with the older, fatter cat, who, like all of us, finds his rear advances both distasteful and vaguely frightening.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Crap In General (and General Crap)

August 5, 2012:  Well, hello everybody! I'd like to say it was nice to see you again -- figuratively, of course -- but in reality I'm very hot and sticky and cranky, and I don't really have any good feelings toward you at all right now, despite a vague appreciation that you are here with me after all -- figuratively, that is -- and that has to mean something, although it could merely be a symptom of your innate selfishness or demented voyeurism.

That said, there are so many, many things to catch up on ... and yet I'm so cranky and sticky and hot that I'm in absolutely no mood to begin recounting everything. Sufficie it to say that everyone in the outside world remains stupid and self-centered, I remain baffled and disturbed, and the disconnect between me and reality continues
to grow exponentially.

On a positive note, I've seen some really good movies lately, including (for the eighth time) John Carpenter's "Vampires," which is really just one of the greatest of its kind. Jack Crow, the Catholic church's expert vampire slayer, is the role James Woods was meant to play, soundly accentuated by the subtle skilled work of Daniel Baldwin -- the best Baldwin brother, for sure -- as the reliable Montoyo. This really is a brilliant horror movie -- loads of fun, slick and corny -- everything you could want from the genre -- and best of all centered on characters that aren't teenagers!

That said, I found the new "Amazing Spiderman" a bit disappointing for that very reason -- too much "Twilight"-type dialogue, unstably supported by a weak actress with bugged-out eyes and a new Peter Parker who is definitely not Toby Maguire. Lots of the special effects were good, and the story -- while a weird departure from the classic origin -- and let me tell you, it's classic for a very good reason -- is fair and fine, such as it is ... But ... But ... I don't know. I just don't know! Perhaps this new incarnation can redeem itself by including some of the more important villains in the next movies -- Mysterio, perhaps, or the Scorpion or Electro ... If not, it may just have to mumble its way into tepid obscurity.

What else? Geez, how the hell should I know. I'm so sticky and short-minded and hot and crampy, all I want to do is climb in the freezer and rest my parts on the ice tray. That, in turn, reminds me that we've got to get the cat fixed for a variety of reasons, the least of which is it might teach him a lesson for knocking over three glasses in the kitchen (the stupid fool!).

I'm also looking for a new car -- that is an old new car (or a new old one). I'm certainly not up to having to track one down, and yet I'm also not relishing the prospect of a rich taperstry of new problems should I fail to secure one in the next few days. Were I smart, I'd pack up and move to the city, but I'm coming to realize more and more, as each sweaty day passes me, that I was never quite as smart as I thought I was. Unfortunately, I'm now getting just smart enough to realize that ...

But enough about me. You came here to find out where modern culture was heading, and I assure you it's not really moving anywhere. That's probably a good thing. It makes valid the perpetual regurgitation of everything classic, for lack of better things new. It explains why magazines like Rolling Stone (which is crappy) and Mojo (which is crummy, but my kind of crummy) keep putting Led Zeppelin and The Beatles on their covers, respectively, and why "The Catcher in the Rye" still gets printed up the wazoo.

Speaking of books, there's a brilliant new humorous sci-fi novel out that my son is reading as we speak. I can't recall the name, but if you come back here next week, I'll try and report it ...