I am so over this winter weather. It’s spring and you would think it would be warmer and it is, but it’s in the low 40’s and damp out. Not very pleasant at all. Grey skies all day. I had lunch with Juan, just some pizza on Washington Street. He got a job at a place that I interviewed with. It’s a card shop and I walked by last month to drop off a resume. To my surprise it turned into an interview with me in torn jeans and smelling like cigars. The interview lasted about an hour, 45 minutes with the owner and 15 minutes with his wife.
I thought it went well but apparently it didn’t. I even suggested Chaz apply there which he did, but since Chaz and I are in that age group that no one wants anymore, they went with Juan who is half my age. Turnabout is fair play since I did snatch the Maxwell’s job from under Juan. Well probably Juan and several other applicants. I used my history with the principal players as well as the club itself. Juan might have been annoyed but I told him that he was the one that employers want these days. He can speak 3 languages and is in that desirable age group.
I did attempt to get Juan a bussing position, as a way to get his foot in the door at Maxwell’s but he was snatched up by a tony restaurant down the street. So he has 2 jobs, the card shop during the day and the restaurant at night. It’s not 7 days a week and the schedule is a jumble but he works it out somehow.
Once again a lot of laughs were had with Juan. I do love having him around. Bill enjoys him too and they both gang up on me when they’re together. I take consolation in the fact that it takes 2 of them to attack little old me. It may happen again tonight, Bill is out and about and Juan might stop by on his way home after work. I wouldn’t mind if it did happen again. I can dish it out and I can take it. So can the two of them, up to a point I reckon.
I stopped by the Guitar Bar and had a nice chat with Mr. Wonderful Jim Mastro. We talked about Bob Dylan coming to Hoboken in July which is very exciting. Unfortunately it will be a Friday night and I will likely have to work. I already made arrangements to have off this Friday to see Bill sing at CitiField and also the first week in May when I am attending a lecture by Brian Eno at Cooper Union.
I was definitely in Eno mode last night, watched a couple of documentaries on Brian Eno on YouTube and thought about having those 8 Eno albums re-autographed. I met Brian Eno at Skyline Studios when he was producing Laurie Anderson and asked if he wouldn’t mind signing his first four solo albums as well as his first four Ambient releases. Unfortunately he signed them with a thin sharpie which doesn’t really show his signature very well.
But after what happened in Boston during the marathon I suppose security will be tight and I don’t want to be ‘that guy’ carrying around a bunch of stuff which may or may not be signed. Still I am very excited at the prospect of hearing just what it is that Brian Eno will have to say. No matter what I am sure it will be interesting to say the least.
It never ends. Heard from a friend of mine who wants me to buy some hi point carbine 4595 since they cannot get it in their home state. I also had an offer to DJ at a restaurant in midtown for their ‘Gay Night’. They would not understand that I don’t DJ anymore, and if I did it would be rock & roll as opposed to house music (which is what teh gays listen to).
Also heard from that disabled sculptress who offhandedly wished me well on the break and that they look forward to future entries (like this one?). ‘A raving success for Ozed’.
They also apologized for being a douche bag a lot of the time, they slip into ‘troll position’ so easily and they attribute it to going off their meds.
In case you were wondering I did not watch the Super Bowl last night. I did turn it on once I heard the power went out after Mrs. Jay Z’s performance. I also saw a little bit of that too, not that I care much for Mrs. Jay Z’s music. I didn’t care for the sport, the game and I did not care for the teams. I watched The Simpsons and Bob’s Burgers and then watched a show about Saturday Night Lives’ first five years which did not include Jane Curtin whom I always liked on the show.
Bill came home after taking care of his mother most of the day. He drove to Atlantic City both Friday and Saturday nights and was running on a low flame after only a few hours of sleep. I hope it doesn’t turn out to Bill overworking and then crashing hard enough to be physically ill for a few days. It happens every so often and I am smart enough to see what comes down the line with regards to that. Bill came home and settled in and watched the SNL retrospective. He never saw the word association test skit with Richard Pryor and Chevy Chase before last night.
On Saturday night there was a posting from My Bloody Valentine on Facebook. After 22 years a new record was being released and I got what I thought was an invitation to give it a listen. I followed the link but was unable to get to it since there were probably a couple of thousand fan boys and girls out there all doing the same as me. I posted to my MiMB friends on Facebook and some of them were in the same boat as me, posting about their frustration and eagerness.
After about an hour, My Bloody Valentine unveiled their own website complete with offers to buy the new release on vinyl and download, on CD and download or just a download. After hemming and hawing I decided on just the download. But which download? There were three options and I decided to ask some audio engineer friends of mine. 16 bit or 24 bit WAVE files? What about the 320kpbs MP3 file? My friends chimed in and I followed their advice which was smart but ineffectual once I took their advice to heart, or in this case, to ears.
I got the 24 bit WAVE file which turned out to be a mistake. I guess the engineers that I know have more sophisticated computers and systems than I do. What would have been a walk in the park was a bear for me. They told me it would take longer to download and it did, but I did not think I would have to manually enter each file that was unzipped. It was no big deal, but it was a pain in the tuchis when I wanted to move them to my iPod. I had to burn the files onto a CD then upload them into iTunes.
Yesterday was spent listening to MBV, the new My Bloody Valentine release. It sounds great, picks up where Loveless left off in 1991. I’ve been listening ever since. I saw My Bloody Valentine twice, once in 1991 when they played the Ritz at Studio 54 and then an abbreviated set at All Points West in 2009. 1991 was all I needed to see, a physical element to the sound and I was at the back of the club, sans earplugs for what was probably the loudest show I had ever heard or seen. 2009 was nothing new, having experience it 18 years before, nothing new was going on and it was time to go home. If they come around again, I hope to be there.
And the other night I wrote how the Selecter were returning to the States. I found out their playing the west coast, no east coast dates scheduled and I am not going to Coachella.
04 To Here Knows When
Last dream of the night & day. Visiting Annemarie who is somewhere in New Hampshire or Northern California. She works in, or near a big building filled with many companies that are under one big umbrella. I had interviewed there before and this time I am getting the run around. It also resembles a Valley Fair supermarket. In one part of the dream I walk into a men’s room where I see the paws of a dog, a kangaroo and could hear the cries of an infant. When I bend down to see what was going on, the dog, a large pit bull comes after me, but I fake it out and move aside.
The infant’s guardians- two older women come into the rest room eyeing me suspiciously, as if having a kangaroo and pit bull watch an infant is the most normal thing. I walk out and as I walk I run into a former coworker from Skyline Studios, Brian Daniels. He tells me so and so wants to see me and to bring my cable box. I have the box and head to the elevators which are not working so I have to take the stairs. And the stairs are tricky, sometimes leading nowhere, sometimes ending suddenly leading to a fall over a cliff.
Stairs that open up to no floors, and you have to position yourself and the doorframe just right in order to get out and stay alive and uninjured.
I see a woman who I interviewed with walk past me, she was in a hurry to get somewhere. I start to follow her but she is going to a very large holiday party to which I was not invited. There are a few people I know there, people I worked with in the past.
Just then Annemarie shows up telling me to get into her car. I do and we drive off. I ‘recognize’ some spots, log cabins with neon signs stating what buildings they are as we drive past but we just keep driving. I finally ask where we are going and she is taking me to Earl’s apartment since I was too disruptive in the office building supermarket. Hopefully Earl would be there. I am a little annoyed that I only brought one joint with me and it’s basically smoked, then I realize where I am going and become somewhat hopeful.
I am on line on a stair case at a bucolic campus, everyone younger than me. I am standing behind a big jock. Finally once at the top of the stairs I look for apartment 1428 but can’t find it and feel that if I asked the students I would be mocked for not knowing where it is. Annemarie has driven off by then and I wander the campus looking at doors and index cards for 1428, to no avail.
Yeah that was from yesterday. I got 475 words out of that dream, standing in front on my computer groggy, no coffee and no shower. Later that day I got a phone call from Shlomo. He asked if I could sit in the cigar shop as he ran around to do some Hanukkah shopping. I had no problem with that since I wasn’t really doing anything anyway. Plus I was running low on cigars so I was able to help Shlomo and replenish my stock.
As I sat there, a customer from that other place in that mall stopped by. It was good to see Nick and there were many laughs had. Some catching up was done and time flew by, before I knew it Shlomo was back with a flaming menorah and I was headed home after exchanging numbers with Nick.
Thank you Casey Chasm.
This has been a strange day, perhaps a strange couple of days. It’s a Monday so that’s a start. Mondays are generally strange to begin with. But the strangeness started the other day I suppose. A Facebook friend that I’ve known all my life requested that I remove certain pictures. Pictures that they were in as well as other friends. The other friends were not complaining so I merely untagged the photos that this person wanted removed. I went so far as to untag any photos I had with them in it. Seemed to work out fine as far as I knew.
For the past hour today, I have been getting requests from this Facebook friend to confirm tags that they want on the photos. Photos that I untagged. Fine, I confirmed all the photos that they were in, but what really gets my goat is the fact that now they want to be tagged in photos they are not in at all. True certain concessions are to be made since they’re connected in some ways to certain photos but it is pissing me off quite a bit. I’ve ignored the other requests that have been made and confirmed only those photos they are in.
I have been visiting the cigar shop in town, nice guys it seems. I keep getting blessed which is always a nice carrot at the end of the stick. Talking to Raymond was good the other night. I told him of how Zack had a layout in a magazine in September, (no not that type of magazine) and all Zack did was take a photo of the layout and post it to the cigar shack Facebook page. It was a little blurry and you could not read all the wonderful things about Zack nor the tips that he offered regarding cigar smoking.
So feeling sad for poor old Zack, I went to the original website and found the link to the layout and pasted it in the comment box underneath Zack’s attempt. It was there for some time and having spoken to Raymond the other day, I thought I would visit the page. There was the blurry layout with 5 comments listed but only 4 comments shown. My largesse was discarded, no more link to the article saying what an awesome guy Zack is. It was fine by me and showed how pathetic things are back in that shack or at least in that closet like office.
Time to move on I know. Seeing Raymond was good the other night and his friendship (as well as a few other people’s) is what I will keep. The rest will fall by the wayside. I was correct about so many things about that cigar shack, from gauges on cigars to what the word ‘ligero’ means, to discover someone attempting to steal cigars by putting boxes of them in with the empty boxes. It’s a good thing they don’t have the annual inventory anymore since the head Swiss cheeses would be dismayed to find out how much of the inventory is walking out the door.
It’s his fiefdom and he will be happy working in a place that will eventually be shuttered soon enough. Call me Cassandra if you will. And with someone like the possum as his lieutenant who will stab him in the back (I stab in the front) at the first opportunity, I can only hope the cleaning lady doesn’t have too much of a mess to clean up. I think this will be the last I will ever write of that godforsaken cigar shack but I will always remember what GZA said about matters such as this and also remember to tip my hat to Freud, for after all why else would Zack send me an email alerting me to what was about to happen back in May? For that I am grateful Zack is no friend of Bill W.
See? I am such a nice guy that I still don’t post the real names, no threats involved.
And now for something completely different.
Well it’s been an interesting week, a Monday through Friday gig. And now I am off for the next 3 days, with work meetings scheduled next Tuesday and Wednesday at 9:00 in the morning. Not complaining, no I am not. The new gig is about 5 minutes from my door which is nice. I save quite a bit of money on the commute. Working at the cigar shack was approximately $200.00 a month to commute back and forth, now it’s down to zero. My world has shrunk considerably as well. Since it’s just a walk down the block, walking to Washington Street has become an excursion.
Of course that will change eventually I guess. I mainly work with women now so I suppose I will have to get my menstrual cycle in line with the women, though half of them are post-menopausal. It’s been a learning experience this week, getting everything together and trying to understand what’s what. I found out today, one of the women I work with is the daughter of a woman I worked with at Maxwells back in the day. She remembered me somewhat but wasn’t sure and I confirmed it when I told her about Maxwells.
I don’t think the daughter is on good terms with her mother. To tell you the truth the mother was starting to lose it back then and through the years she may have gotten worse. I am not sure if innocent is the proper word to describe the times back then, but after all these years in the cold light of today things are a lot more real. Most of the people back then have moved on, a select few are still around and connections are reestablished via Facebook. The other day the women announced they were going out for drinks after work today.
I immediately started thinking of excuses not to. Nothing against them, it’s just that it would be an expense I couldn’t afford, plus drinking takes more than a physical toll on me, it takes time, time to recover from the drinks. Even that one glass of wine last week did my head in for a few hours afterward. A few margarita’s with then girls would render tomorrow inactive. Then again I did hear from Pedro who said he might be coming to town tomorrow and that might entail drinks with him and Connie.
Of course Pedro could talk me into it though I have to keep in mind that last time I was properly rocked and it took a lot of will power to keep myself together. Of course when you look at me in that condition you never can tell. It’s what’s inside that you don’t see and that inside is usually a mess. I handle myself well but usually I would rather be in bed sleeping it off. Tomorrow with Pedro depends on the weather. If it’s raining then he and Connie will probably stay upstate. If it’s nice then they will be down here, perhaps in a dark pub.
It’s been interesting with Pedro the past couple of days. He’s leaning right politically and setting me up with Facebook messages that are pro-Willard. I fall for it and as I write with pure emotion, he feeds the fire somewhat then takes a step back letting me know he is merely busting my balls and that he loves me, calling me his big brother. And that makes it alright. I certainly hope he does not bring up politics tomorrow, I know I won’t. Until then I will occupy my time one way or another. It has been a good week.
And hello Casey Chasm en familie!
New layout! What do you think?
She’s a Lady
And so today, I find myself on September 10. Not a bad day, it’s been alright thanks. Yesterday wasn’t so bad either. No busking but I did sit by the river and enjoyed a cigar as I read. After the maelstrom on Saturday it was good to be out and about. And there were a lot of people out and about. There was also the last day of the Italian feast on River Road which accounted for the marching band and the testing of fireworks in the afternoon. That was why a quarter of Pier A being inaccessible to the out and about crowd.
I was home at an all too decent hour and once again, once home I am in for the evening. That meant no going to see any acquaintance play. I did intend to go but the four flights of stairs defeated me and I wanted to spend time with Bill who had spent the day with his cousin and her family since his cousin lost her mother earlier in the week. I didn’t know what type of mood Bill would be in so I waited with tea and sympathy, or rather a Klondike bar and a hug.
He was OK and we just hung out watching TV, nothing in particular just the news. Then he went to bed and I stayed up watching more of nothing in particular. Slept well last night and woke up easy as well. I was up and out rather quickly, a trip to the bibliothèque and then a walk to the really big supermarket. It was the right time, apparently if you go before noon there are significantly less people which makes for a pleasant shopping experience as I walked up and down the aisles humming along to She’d Rather be With Me by the Turtles.
Though it’s unofficial, today felt like summer was over with the air feeling quite autumnal. I decided to go out and do some busking. I practiced Maggie May by Rod Stewart at home and did alright, but once I was on the promenade it did not go over well. It was too windy to pull out the sheets of songs and chords so whatever I had memorized would have to do. Well that and whatever I had on Google Drive which is also on my smartphone, just much smaller. And since it was September 10, the song of the day was One After 909.
The other night for a lark I decided to see if I could download the movie, Let It Be and I did. Not exactly the feel good Fabs movie as they’re falling apart and Paul’s trying to keep it all together. But it’s the rooftop concert which is the best part and what inspired me to figure out One After 909. Easy enough to play and I had the Google Drive to back me up should I falter. Mike Cecchini walked by and we had a good talk before I started playing.
I reckon that I will have to dress a little more appropriately for the weather which means I would have to wear pants. Since May I’ve only worn pants once and that was for an interview a week or so ago. From what I heard I might have a good foot in the running. It was getting too cold to continue busking plus nature was calling so that meant I had to pack everything up and go and answer the call which I did. Then I came home and opened a box that Annemarie, Rex and Earl sent for my birthday and once the box was opened cookies and brownies were enjoyed.
Blah blah blah. Am I right? Another day, low key at best. Ran around some, did some errands. I did not go to the bibliothèque, at least not yet. There’s still time. I did request a book the other day and as of yesterday it is en route. I figured it would get here by today and since the bibliothèque closes at 8:00 tonight I still might get an email letting me know it had arrived. It’s a lot like watching paint dry. It’s been a slow going day today with the sun finally making an appearance late in the afternoon.
I was in midtown Manhattan this afternoon and ran into my friend Jesse. Jesse had news to tell me about our mutual friend Marcus. When Jesse told me this news I feared the worst. But as it turns out it wasn’t the worst, but it wasn’t the best either. It seems that Marcus has been deported. Apparently he was in custody of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) for the past year. That is certainly too bad, but Marcus is a survivor and I am sure he will be back one way or another. He does have family here.
I told Jesse to give my best to Marcus’ family. I was soon back in Hoboken and decided to have a seat by Pier A and read. It felt funny without my guitar. I thought I would be situated to be away from my usual spot so I wouldn’t be seen by the toddlers without the guitar. As luck would have it, there they were trooping around Pier A with their minders, asking me where my guitar was, and making the motions of strumming. I told them the guitar was home sleeping but they would see it tomorrow. Too much information for their minds.
I have been playing the guitar inside and trying to remember songs by heart. Not Ann & Nancy Wilson from Heart, but by memory is what I should have written. Lately after I’ve properly butchered a song enough, I’ve been going off on musical tangents which I think sound pretty cool. I have one on a Sound Cloud and I am sure I have posted it here before, around 8 months ago. So now I have the itch to do another and I might just post a new ditty tonight. I have no idea what it will sound like.
I listened to the older song on Sound Cloud since someone I used to admire in the 1980’s started following me on the Cloud. To me I think it sounds a lot like Laraaji, someone that Brian Eno produced back in the 1970’s. Not as melodious as Laraaji of course but conceptually it’s near that neighborhood. And also perhaps a little Feelies in the mix which is probably by osmosis. Having written that I can safely say that it is nowhere near Laraaji or the Feelies. Or anything else for that matter. I guess it sounds like me.
I just did a search online for this here blog and could not find the link to the Sound Cloud. So here it is again. NSFH or NSFW, and definitely NSFD. It may cause drowsiness and alcohol intensifies the effect. Use care when using the Sound Cloud. It may cause dizziness as well. Do use caution. And now, on with the shoe.
Now it’s a Tuesday and even less is going on. Some of it on purpose, some of it beyond my say in the matter. It’s been raining intermittently, a few drops here and there, no thunderstorms like it was announced. I haven’t been outside much today and didn’t play the guitar at all. I felt maybe a day away from the guitar would give me a different approach to playing since yesterday was alright but not like I had hoped. I just called the Guitar Bar and the show is going on as scheduled. Not going to make the other meeting though.
That’s more of a meeting for door to door canvassing and I am not feeling that at all. When I did go out I met my friend Mike who lives up the street. He is playing a show at DC’s in Hoboken next Monday and I will more than likely attend that. Last night I was DJ’ing at Louise and Jerry’s while sitting at home. It went well for a few hours. Rand was also DJ’ing and even showed up at Louise and Jerry’s and DJ’d via his smartphone. My smartphone is incompatible with the app that is required.
I was asked to join Rand and Lisa but going out requires money and money is something I am doing my best to hang onto lately. Plus I really don’t go out anymore. Some people think it’s a bad thing, but after years of going out almost every single night, I don’t think I am missing anything except for the company of some dear friends. They understood that I am an old fart so I was okay with that. But it seems I am going out tonight so I guess I am not such an old fart, just particular in when and where I go.
Already the boots are on to head out and I will be heading out in about an hour. Last night I stayed in and when Bill came home we watched True Blood and the Newsroom. Both shows are ending the season in a week or two and we enjoyed both of them, though Bill did feel a little squeamish with the gore on True Blood and there was plenty of gore to go around. He stayed up and I went to bed first, falling asleep and thinking how comfortable I was in my own bed.
Looking west, it looks cloudy and ominous, looking south it looks cloudy and quite nice. I suppose whatever front will get here first will determine the evening’s plans. And like I wrote the boots are on, and I have shaken off the dust from the Xanap I just had. Bill is at a rehearsal with the dreaded cast from hell. They intruded on the TV watching last night with countless phone calls. A wacky bunch indeed. Bill kissed me goodbye this morning but was filled with apprehension with regards to what he was going to have to go through tonight.
Bill is usually excited about having me seeing whatever show he is involved with but this time, for the first time he is rather ambivalent about the whole thing. Of course my opinion is tainted on the issue and if and when I do go to see the show I will know about who’s who and the stress they put my spouse through, for I am especially loyal to Bill of course.
Now I am already to go out, the boots are on, I just had a sandwich and after a stop at the bibliothèque it’s a walk to the Shipyard Park to see the Guitar Bar All Stars. No idea if the funniest girl alive will be there, so I will have to wait and see.
02 Come Down In Time
A nice day, not too hot. Nearly perfect actually. Been a busy day. Bill was off from work and had to go to Philadelphia for some reason. He told me and I of course forgot about it. He’s been busy with the stage managing and all that. Last night he came home, had something to eat then went back to his office to do some work for this play he is involved with. I did not stay up, but when he was leaving this morning, he told me he didn’t get back home until 3:00AM. Now that is dedication I suppose.
The play has the potential to be a headache. And since Bill has a day job, he can’t be there for all the rehearsals so that seems to be a problem with the cast. They knew when they hired Bill that he had a day job but still there are some bumps in the road. But Bill is a trouper and is up for the challenge. IN fact he seems to welcome them. He called me from the office last night, a few pieces of paper were left behind and he definitely needed to know what was on them.
I was up and around early enough this morning. No need for the supermarkets, I stayed in until about 1:30 and walked over to the waterfront for some more strumming. I saw Tariq about a block away, he had his guitar and was walking away from the waterfront. Then he went into a store and I just kept going on my way. I figured he might be back but once I was set up and strumming, there was no Tariq to be found. That was alright, I just kept on strumming, causing some toddlers to dance with my guitar playing as they went on their afternoon walks.
I am planning on going back to Pier A tonight. Not to play but to watch a friend of mine play as part of a tribute to Woody Guthrie turning 100 years old. It’s going on before the movie on Pier A. They’re showing The Help tonight. I’m not much interested in seeing that, though if it was the Beatles in Help! I would probably see that, even though I do have the DVD of that at home. Still going out is something to do, since Bill does not expect to be home until midnight.
I did not make any money today as I was busking on the waterfront. I also did not have the guitar case open to invite anyone to throw some change in. I did not have my steno notebook of quick and easy songs to play, though I did have the envelope and wound up playing It Takes A Lot To Laugh, It Takes A Train To Cry by Bob Dylan. It didn’t sound half bad I thought. Having the capo helped for sure. No singing once again, just strumming.
A busy day overall. Tomorrow, The Guitar Bar All Stars are playing and I am looking forward to that. Some other things were planned but this is an annual thing that I do and I always enjoy it, plus I get to see the funniest girl alive, Meghan Taylor once again. And of course Lily & Ruby will more than likely be there as well as Mr. Wonderful, Jim Mastro. I wish I could attend that and Lois finishing up her improv class, and I probably could, I just have to try to figure that out. And there is also the barbecue that Tariq invited me to. Can’t do all three, not even sure if I can do two things. We shall see I reckon.
Shake Off The Ghost
It’s been a dreary wet Friday. I did not sleep so well last night and so waking up at the usual time was not going to happen. With the lack of a good night’s sleep and the rain coming down outside, it made getting out of bed a bit of a chore. Still I got it together a little after 9:00 this morning and heading to the kitchen I turned on the TV, surprised to see the dreaded Matt Lauer on around 9:15. There he was talking about a shooting as I made the coffee before jumping in the shower.
A few minutes later I was awake and drying myself off as the coffee maker did its thing. I turned up the volume on the TV, deciding to get my news from someone other than Matt Lauer and found out about the shooting in Aurora, Colorado. 12 dead, maybe 50, maybe 71 injured at a midnight showing of the latest Batman movie. Some nut job with not just one gun but a few including an assault rifle, went into a crowded movie theater, opened up a smoke canister and just started taking people out. Randomly and casually shooting people as they tried to make it to the exits.
Some bullets even went through the theater wall and into the theater next door. Some people thought it was a promotional thing, a guy all dressed up in armor and whatnot bursting through a door and causing mayhem. It wasn’t mayhem, it was carnage, a massacre. Terrible, just terrible. I hate guns. I have never touched a real gun in my life, I don’t like them at all. I have some police officer friends, one time hanging out with one in my Weehawken apartment, his gun on the table. I could touch it he said and I refused.
I did not even like it in the apartment. Bill has a prop gun here and it is so realistic, it freaked me out so much that I had to leave the room. Of course being in a four room railroad apartment I didn’t go far, but still I had to get away from it. I think prior to 1980 I was fairly ambivalent to guns. After the brutal murder of John Lennon in December 1980 I was steadfastly against guns, donating money to various gun control organizations. Things have certainly and steadily gotten worse since that horrible night almost 30 years ago.
I do have some friends that are gun enthusiasts, card carrying members of the National Rifle Association. Usually I am dumbfounded when I hear of my friend’s memberships since I consider them to be more often than not- intelligent. Now we have a 24 year old gun enthusiast/mad man who basically had an arsenal (6000 rounds bought over the internet) of sorts killing men women and children for no good reason. Already there have been murmurs of how it would have turned out differently is someone else had a gun in that darkened smoky movie theater.
Yes it could have turned out differently. There could have been more dead and more wounded. For some people the problem that there are too many guns and are too readily available can be easily solved by introducing more guns. I don’t know if that can be called logic, but it certainly escapes me. Unfortunately, I am somewhat inured to this type of news, hence my hearing about a shooting and going about my usual morning business. Gabrielle Giffords and those victims in Tucson, Columbine. There seems to be too many to mention actually. Everyday offers a new tragedy somewhere in the world and sometimes it is here on our own doorstep.
You send your kids to school, you don’t expect them to be shot.
You go to a midnight movie, you don’t expect to be shot.
Such a beautiful day again. And once again I’ve been out and about. I was in midtown Manhattan, had a few things I needed to do and when headed in the direction of where I needed to go, I run into former cigar shack employee and current customer, Jerrode. Jerrode is truly a nice guy, very sweet and upbeat and quite outgoing. He works in the vicinity of the cigar shack and was headed back since his lunch hour was ending. We strolled about for a while, meaning I walked him to 56th street before heading back to where I wanted to go.
I had a feeling I would run into someone I knew and I was glad it was him. I don’t like backtracking when I don’t have to so I walked up one avenue and stopped at the salad bar where I used to have lunch, and had some lunch. The customary phone call to Annemarie did not proceed as planned so I left a message on the machine. I got what I needed to get and soon was headed back to the bus terminal. It was the type of day where the past popped up, not just with Jerrode, but also seeing someone’s Facebook page and seeing that someone I had written off was back online.
Not that I am about to refriend this guy. That is not going to happen. That thing is that I have two Facebook accounts. One I started years ago when it was the social network for the Ivy League schools courtesy of a friend that was going to Columbia University. I logged in with an apostrophe and soon forgot about it, until a few months ago when I was checking an old email account that still exists but is rarely used. So now I have two Facebook accounts, one with an apostrophe and the other without. And that is how I discovered that this guy is back online.
He’s blocked me and I’ve blocked him on one account but through looking at the page of someone that we’re both friends with that’s how I saw what he’s up to. And having done that I am glad I’ve moved on. Life is so much better without that wanker mucking things up. So basically there are two people from the past that I came across today. One is sweet as pie and the other is someone I would cross the street to avoid.
Now I am home, Bill just left a little while ago, driving to Atlantic City once again, so I won’t be seeing him until tomorrow morning. We’ll more than likely talk on the phone before he turns in for the night. No plans for the evening except for maybe a stroll around Hoboken later. It’s just too nice out to stay indoors. Life is out there in every sense of the phrase. Not much else to do, not much else to write. Just a beautiful lazy night ahead. Got to enjoy them while you can, you dig?
New Order – Fine Time
For some reason I find myself thinking of something that happened about 27 years ago, it could have been around this time of year, give or take a few months. I was living in my first apartment in Hoboken with my dear friend Jet Watley. Jet was working at Tower Records in the Village at the timer and he always used to get free things all the time. Usually records, promo items, invitations to listening parties and tons of posters and all that. One particular time he got tickets to see Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus at Madison Square Garden.
I had never been to the circus so it was somewhat exciting to me. I asked my friends Mike and Arrot if they wanted to go and they seemed into it. I had four tickets and Arrot explained that her sister April was coming in that night by train from Vermont and arriving at Penn Station, located right below Madison Square Garden. So it seemed to be working out perfectly. Mike, Arrot and I took the Path train into the city and walked one block west to Madison Square Garden where we met up with Arrot’s sister April.
Both Arrot and April were attractive young women and Arrot explained that before we go back to Hoboken we would be going to see the circus directly above us. Then April introduced us to two men she met on the train from Vermont. Klaus and Viktor were their names and they were in New York City for the first time. They had nowhere to go, and they only person they knew was April. I did not have any tickets for Klaus and Viktor so we didn’t know exactly what to do.
Since they were tourists, the three of them, why not do something that tourists do? So we walked to the pavilion at Madison Square Garden and found some kids who were looking to buy tickets for the evening’s performance. They asked how much we wanted for the tickets and I told them they were free, they could have them. They didn’t expect that and their faces showed an unbridled happiness that one doesn’t see too often, either then or now.
We walked over to the Empire State Building and wound up spending time on top of the world, looking at Manhattan at our feet. It was a beautiful sight and a beautiful night. But then again there are only so many things and angles that you can see at the top of the Empire State Building so we decided to head back to Hoboken. We figured out that April, Klaus and Viktor would stay with Mike and Arrot who lived around the block from the Elysian Café.
We dropped off their gear and made our way to the pub where it was crowded with quite a few friendly faces. We all talked to our friends and sat and drank and April being the new girl in town found herself on a barstool, surrounded by a few guys who wanted to know who she was and perhaps know her a little better than that. Arrot was with Mike and wasn’t paying much attention to what her sister was doing and I spent some time and energy wondering if Klaus and Viktor were gay or just European. All of a sudden Arrot came up to me as I sat and talked with Mike and told me she couldn’t believe it. There was April perched on a barstool, surrounded by men and having a few drinks. She had a problem with that since April was only 14 years old.
She wasn’t looking or acting 14 years old, she looked like a twenty something Audrey Hepburn. We decided to go back to Mike and Arrot’s apartment where we all got a little jazzy with something that Klaus or Viktor had with them. We lay on the floor feeling quite nice, Viktor’s head in my lap and still I couldn’t tell if it was the Gay or European conundrum. It turned out he was European. Still I was infatuated.
Infatuated enough to accompany Klaus and Viktor to Newark Airport the next day on a shuttle bus that I rode round trip. I probably looked disheartened when Viktor mentioned seeing his girlfriend when they got back to Germany. I came back to Hoboken, not heartbroken, just had a nice adventure with a pair of nice guys and a very sexy 14 year old girl. I never saw Klaus or Viktor again and I don’t think I ever saw April again, come to think of it.
Just a little something that popped into my head, triggered when I saw a Newark Airport shuttle bus this afternoon.
07 Born in Time [#] 1
Happy birthday Bob Dylan.
777-9311 by The Time is playing right now. I remember having an in depth discussion with Peter Holsapple of the dB’s when he was working at the Music Maze at 23rd and Third in the city and when I was totally enamored with the dB’s. He explained what sounded like a drum machine was actually Jimmy Johnson and here we are 30 years later and it still sounds incredible.
Yesterday was a day off and it went well. I did my usual shuffle about Hoboken, Bill came home from his reading and it sounded like a very good reading, something I should have attended if only I was invited. He stayed up for a little while before going to bed and I watched the Daily SHow, followed by The Colbert Report.
I usually watch the Daily Show in the morning but I was planning on being busy this morning. I had a meeting with a company that liked what they saw when they came into the cigar shack a week ago. I would like to think the meeting went well but I really couldn’t say since it was up to them and not me.
It lasted about 45 minutes, met with 2 representatives from a well placed cigar manufacturer. I think they are trying to pick my brain about how the big cheeses run things and since Zack is unavailable for somethings and Bradley being a possum at times, they asked me and how could I refuse? It was eerily close to the cigar shack anyhow so I had to watch who I saw when I entered and exited the building.
Beautiful loft space where the meeting was held, so much so that I felt the view warranted a picture. I left feeling pretty good about myself, no trade secrets given away. A slow and easy walk to the cigar shack was had afterwards, heading in the opposite direction, then turning around and retracing my steps.
There was Bradley, sitting on Zack’s throne since Zack was off doing a public access radio show downtown for most of the morning. Bradley of course felt like he was the big man and Thomas and I let him think that he was. He’s not that tall so opportunities like this don’t come around too often.
Lunchtime came at the right time for me so I was able to sit on a bench near the park once again and read Retromania while smoking a damaged cigar. It wasn’t unsmokable but you realy can’t sell a $20.00 cigar with such obvious defects on it. And Retromania is entertaining though a bit dry. It’s rare that I read a book that you have to meet halfway where most of the other books just open up and fall into your lap.
I did hear about a dirpy program that allows you to convert videos into mp3’s. My niece mentioned it last summer but never came through on the details. Now I have the details and I was going through my favorites on YouTube but it turned out I have just about everything I want (a major subject of Retromania), so I downloaded Robert Wyatt singing Shipbuilding which it turns out I had 3 downloads of it already.
C’est la vie. The hope thing is springing eternal and the waiting game goes on.
06 When You Dance I Can Really Love
Ceremony by New Order is playing. I originally had Joy Division on but once again I realized I don’t really like too many Joy Division songs. Probably because of Ian Curtis’ voice. I like maybe 5 Joy Division songs. A sacrilege to some I am sure. Love Will Tear Us Apart, Transmission, She’s Lost Control…and that’s all I can think of. Atmosphere is way too much of a dirge for my liking. Good friends of mine love them still but I don’t get it. Too depressing which my friends don’t see or hear.
It’s back at the cigar shack again. I thought it would be Zack, Bradley and Jerry Vale with myself, but there was no Jerry Vale today. That’s a bit a of a disappointment. Nick, someone from McMann & Tate just walked in. He remembers me and I always think of his as Scott which is not his name, but could be the pseudonym that I gave him 6 years ago. NIce guy, I think he has a thing for me.
So the cigar shack did quite well today. I had a nice chat with Bradley about me and Thomas which helped me sweep the bad feelings under the rug. And Thomas came in for a few minutes. It’s his birthday weekend and he has a few buddies from Connecticut in town for drinks and carousing. 26 years old now, and still incorrigible.
A little over 30 minutes left in today at the cigar shack and I am working both Saturday and Sunday. I did arrange to have off on May 6 so I could attend the Fartin’ Mucous Festival in Hoboken and also took off May 12th and 13th to perhaps go down the shore with Rand and Lisa. In order to do that I have to work a 5 day stretch which is murder, but those 2 days off at the end of the week is a pot of gold of sorts.
ANd Bill is driving tomorrow, not tonight. Of course when I come home tonight he will be out cold. I will speak to him as he sleeps and he will mutter incomprehensible things back to me. WHat it means I don’t know.
Last night, I did not sleep that well, woke up with New Order’s Temptation in my head which is never played on WCBS-FM so it was in my head and stayed there. I shouldn’t have watched that 1981 Live from the Ukrainian Home video last night. And I had a dream. I was back in Lodi on Riverview Avenue to deliver a message to old neighbor from around the block, Jeffrey Telep about his dog Tramp.
Tramp was alive and well in the dream though more than likely dead for about 30 years. As I walked through the neighborhood, I saw the Merlino’s house, the Serpone’s house all with new, yet invisible residents. The Bello’s house, now owned by the horrible Debbie Natale was like a clearing house filled with kitchen appliances, all tagged and ready for sale.
Debbie was berating an employee, making them cry and I threw the message for Jeffrey Telep away, deciding to go back home to my parents.
Well today was quite a long day. Zack and Bradley and Thomas all on deck. And it has not been easy for anyone doing sales, despite the new limited edition whatchamacallit cigar that was just released. We all emailed our clients letting them know that the best thing since sliced bread is out, the second coming of second hand smoke has been set out into the world.
Zack of course, with 7 or 8 years of building a client base easily makes his sales, Bradley with a lifetime of working in retail makes his sales, Thomas does well with his people and my emails get ignored. Out of 30 emails, three responded, two were sales, another was a question that went answered but went no farther than that. And I just checked my work email again and it is still the same. No responses. I’m not sweating it, at least not until Friday since I am off tomorrow.
No Jimmy Seltzer sighting this week. He usually comes in on Thursday and since tomorrow is Thursday and I won’t be in, chances are I won’t be seeing him until next week, which is too bad since I do enjoy the fleeting chats I do have with Jimmy Seltzer. He offers insight that I am usually blind to, such as yes I do have a job that I am none too fond of, but still I do go in day after day and generally do a good job.
On Friday, Zack and I have a tentative plan to review my performance review. I agreed with most of the things he wrote on the report, but do I tell him that my heart isn’t in it? That I have grown disheartened as the second anniversary approaches much to rapidly for my tastes? No, it will be best to keep it to myself and just say ‘yes sir’ or ‘no sir’ as he goes down the list of my faults. Best not to mention the disdain that I have for most of the customers. No I leave it to him to express his disdain, his name calling and his curiosity that some of these customers are more than likely closet cases.
I did have a good bus ride into the city this morning. I ran into neighbor Deborah, been a week or so since I last saw her. I neglected to wish her a happy birthday on her Facebook page but she didn’t mind. She almost had a good day if not for an argument with her boyfriend which could not be good. An argument on your birthday is not a good thing.
It’s so odd to come home and not find Bill fast asleep in bed like he has been for the past couple of days. He is scheduled to sing before the Mets game on Sunday and I’ve made arrangements to have the day off to videotape him once again, but the forecast for Sunday is rain which would be a drag. I guess we’ll find out on Saturday, whether or not Sunday at CitiField will come to pass. I hope it does, he’s been practicing frequently lately. But if it does not, I hope a reschedule could be worked out. And I hope I can rearrange a day off so I could attend.
Yes, today has been a day off. And it’s been alright. No need for pharmaceuticals since there was no despair at hand. I had a doctor’s appointment this morning and I wasn’t stressing it. It was merely a physical, a check up. This doctor is so much better than the one I had been seeing.
I held back on commenting on the old doctor when the new doctor asked who I had been seeing. When I mentioned the old doctor’s name, the new doctor mentioned that he was a friend. But it wasn’t really since the old doctor was a twin who shared his practice with his identical brother. I mentioned that it was Michael, not Joseph I had been seeing and the new doctor mentioned that all these years he had never met Joseph’s brother.
It was all very Dead Ringers by David Cronenberg. I was glad they were not gynecologists.
I was surprised my weight hadn’t gone down but I am trimmer. I guess the fat is turning to muscle. No, I still don’t have a six pack abdomen, and I don’t look like I swallowed a keg. My blood pressure is still low, 110 over 60 which isn’t that bad.
And the rest of the exam went well. I do have to go get some blood work done. Apparently the law dictates that general practitioners cannot take blood and leave it in the boxes outside their offices. Also the new doctor mentioned that kids had a habit of breaking into the boxes and throwing the contents onto the street, causing a lot of money in clean up.
Since I work in the city, I could get the blood extracted from Duane Reade which is a bit scary but since I trust the new doctor I will more than likely do it in the next few days.
After the doctor’s visit I was off running errands in the early afternoon of a spring day. It was bright and cool outside and I ran into RoDa as I wandered around. We chatted for awhile, talking about how we are both getting older as we stood on the street corner.
I’ve known RoDa for over 20 years and here we were in our 40’s talking about ailments and aging. He went his way and I went mine, home to some more coffee before returning two PG Wodehouse books to the bibliothèque.
Jimmy Seltzer had recommended reading Wodehouse and I did take them out, but since I was distracted by Mojo & Uncut magazines, as well as the New Yorker and my smartphone as well as the internets. Yes, the internets- where I saw a clip of Kurt Vonnegut talking about the firebombing of Dresden which got me interested enough in getting some Vonnegut from the American Classics selection via the bibliothèque.
Yes, I am reading Slaughterhouse Five. So it goes. And I did pick up the latest Mojo & Uncut magazines today. Have to schedule my reading habits so I can keep reading Vonnegut while reading about Steve Marriott & Jack White. Still haven’t gotten the latest New Yorker so I guess I will be calling the subscription department on Monday. So it goes.
Back from work after a day off yesterday. It was quite a busy day, I hit the ground running. Thomas was in the midst of a big sale which caused his tide to lift all of the other boats. It took a few hours for the sale to be completed for Thomas which put things in a weird situation. Was this guy going to come back or was he going to leave Thomas in the lurch.
I busied myself with the usual mundane things. It was Bradley and Thomas and myself today and we all got along quite well. Some interesting discussions were had, especially one which was about the different types of gay bars. That came about since I mentioned that I might be going to cigar night at the Eagle, a leather bar in Chelsea, to drum up business for the cigar shack.
It was a funny chat which turned into a chat about ‘pride’. Why was there a gay pride parade? Why is Black pride so important? Why is there no white pride? Why is there no heterosexual pride days? I explained that every friggin’ day was white, heterosexual pride day and to his credit, Bradley explained that whites have not been marginalized like gays and blacks have been.
And also the concept of ‘white pride’ has some awfully nasty white supremacist connotations. It was a fun and interesting talk which actually does happen from time to time until a customer walks in.
On the home front, last night I had a funny phone call with my former roommate Kevin. I hadn’t laughed like that in quite a while. He’s always been a funny guy with a humorous view of things. And he is quite a gossip too. He always has been. After an hour I had to get off the phone though since Bill was off his conference call.
Today Bill had an appointment with his doctor and the word is that he is a borderline diabetic. I am concerned and not that surprised since he makes me look like a top shelf nutritionist when compared to what he eats. So he has to revamp his life, change his diet. He has always hated drinking water and now that is going to have to become his main staple as far as liquids go.
I do wonder can a diabetic or a borderline diabetic still enjoy a pint of Guinness every now and then? I guess we will find out soon enough. Bill will get the results from his blood test on Monday so we should find out more. He just went to bed with my prodding.
He’s understandably nervous and stayed up till I came home so he can unload. I listened and reassured him that whatever happens we will manage. We have good people around us, our friends and family who would be more than willing to share advice with us on matters such as this. We’re not in it alone.
I guess it does take a village, not just to raise a child but to get through life. Unless you’re a hermit or a recluse, in which case you turn your back on the village and go it alone which I guess is cool for some people. On the other hand, we will take whatever we can get.
05 The Great Pretender
Well I slept fairly well last night but I woke up feeling rather crappy. Head stuffed with snot and mucous. At least a quadrant of my skull felt that way. It took me by surprise as I lay in bed, reaching for the box of tissues nearby so I could blow my nose. I wasn’t sure if it was allergies or a head cold and I am still not sure.
I am dragging ass today that much I know. I got it together and headed out of the apartment as usual, wishing I could have taken the day off. By the time I got to the street I realized I left my hat upstairs and rather than climb four flights back up, I opted to walk to the bus stop. It was colder than I anticipated and I regretted not having a hat.
A quiet bus ride into the city, me sitting in the last seat on the bus. I was tired enough to fall asleep but I didn’t. A walk up the avenue , avoiding the subway to save some money left me cold and sweaty and quite out of it by the time I got to the cigar shack. Zack and Thomas were in the cigar shack when I got in.
I hadn’t seen Zack in a few days and he was ready to shake hands but I opted for a fist bump since I was feeling a bit ill. The day progressed nicely with Thomas grabbing big numbers and Zack behind, with me carrying up the rear. It had nothing to do with how I was feeling, it had more to do with connecting with customers and Thomas had connected with his and Zack’s people always get in touch with Zack.
Me, I took the laid back approach and obviously that was not the way to get big numbers on the board today. Throughout the day I’ve been feeling crappy and sometimes feeling alright. Not 100% but in 90% range. I had a decent lunch and felt OK after that. I even went to a few shops to buy a hat but all they had were baseball caps and the shop has a few of those as promotional items so I wasn’t about to spend $20.00 on one of those.
When I came back after lunch I was feeling alright but that didn’t last. I am pretty sure I will sleep well tonight though. And tomorrow being a day off will likely be spent in bed. No plans on going anywhere or doing anything. Probably best that I stay in and get my rest, especially since Sunday promises to be a long day what with the super bowl, more than 12 hours that day and then Monday which will be the usual day followed by a staff meeting.
Bill is in full nurse mode, getting everything ready for me when I come home so I will not have to do much of anything. All I have to do is get on the bus and then walk home. Thomas is closing the cigar shack so that gives me a 10 minute head start. And now I am home. Bill is worried about me of course which I find unnerving.
I am usually the one who worries and I am not used to being worried about though I am sure it happens from time to time with people I know and love. A blessedly uneventful ride home on the bus, listening to Robyn Hitchcock & the Egyptians. I climbed the four flights and there was Bill greeting me at the door. I changed out of my suit into my tracky bottoms and relaxed. Now I look forward to doing nothing at all.
Rest in peace Linda Wolfe.
03 Acid Bird
Yesterday started with Bill meeting me on the bus on my way to the cigar shack It was quite nice, if only fleeting. A nice kiss was given which got a few suprised looks from other passengers. Bill rode for one stop then he was off the bus and headed home as I continued my ride into the city.
A nice- if cold, walk up the avenue, getting my egg sandwich. I walked on the sunny side of the street. I was working with Thomas and Jerry Vale and figured I would be early enough for a quiet start, thought about playing the Beatles Live at The BBC. I was dismayed to walk through the door to see Thomas in already, counting money and listening to Skrillex, dubstep at quite a loud volume.
Apparently my reaction as well as Jerry Vale’s made Thomas mention that that was how he felt, and what he hears when we play our classic rock or classic soul. Apparently yesterday morning I became an old fogie, if only for my reaction which surprised me as well. I had such animosity to dubstep for which I equated my dislike to death metal.
Obviously it was not to be played when the cigar shack opened at which point I took over the music, choosing something not as jarring as dubstep. Later in the day Kurt Russell came in followed by Goldie Hawn. He browsed and she stood by the register. She was pleasant and really gota kick out of Thomas’ compliments on her Stella McCartney handbag.
I went to lunch at my appointed time and called Annemarie. During the call I got another call from Thomas. Apparently 2 shoplifters who had hit the other cigar shack across town made an appearance in the cigar shack where I work. I flew back to the shack with my game face on but they were gone. What would I have done anyway, really?
That was taken care of and I went back to my phone call with Annemarie before heading into a diner for a Ma & Pa Special, which is Roast Beef, Mashed Potatoes and Broccoli. I had top sales once again though it wasn’t from anything extraordinary, merely from the volume of cigar sales, being at the right place at the right time.
I made it to the bus terminal and waited with the other stiffs on line eventually finding a seat. I watched Portlandia on Netflix on my smartphone. It really is very funny and I highly recommend it. I came home, Bill happy to have me back. He was cleaning and looking for something.
I turned on the Screen Actors Guild awards which Bill enjoyed greatly, then when that ended I changed the channel to a documentary on Fishbone, a great band from the 1980’s who are still around. They came close to grabbing that brass ring but never quite got it while lesser talented bands took it and ran.
Bill was thoroughly engrossed by the whole thing but went to bed before it was over. I stayed up and watched the whole thing and would see Fishbone again if the opportunity presented itself.
Today was really nothing much at all. Brian did top sales today even though he was out. Zack is back and Bradley is back to being a schmuck again. I guess he likes being number 1 and resentful of being number 2 in every sense of the word & number. Without the responsibility of last week he is free to be the sexually ambivalent snort that he always was.
I suppose it was a vacation from all that and now he too is back. As Thomas and I discussed the other day, Bradley did make for a good manager but then again he does not have the pressure that Zack has. Things are back to ‘normal’ for what it’s worth.
2 – Spooky
AN early day, an early start. At the cigar shack, opening this morning. Been open for 25 minutes, one person came in, just to browse. George Harrison’s All Things Must Pass is playing on the cigar shack sound system. What is Life indeed. A nice day, nicer than it’s been the past few days. A balmy 40 degree range.
Last night came home, before Bill and I had the idiotic republican blowhard debate on. Quite a waste of time, watching Mitt Romney and New Gingrich speak. Both are quite heinous and the race seems to be who is actually worse than the other. Of course the only plan the candidates have is to get Obama out of the White House.
No real plan, but a lot of disinformation like Romney blaming Obama for setting a date for the withdrawal from Iraq, though it was actually announced by the idiot George Bush before he left office. I suppose Willard is hoping that Americans do have short memories, like the Neuter is doing, glad that Americans forgot that he was drummed out of Congress in the 1990’s, as well as the other bullshit that he did, like shutting down the government since he had to sit in the back of Air Force One.
Still awfully quiet in the cigar shack as well as the surrounding area. One customer just came in. A regular who bought 2 cigars and now sits in the man cave solo. I am sure other regulars will arrive soon enough and plant themselves in the chairs and around the table for most of the day. I can’t fault them for it though if it were me I doubt I would be hanging out in a man cave all day, seeing the same faces day in and day out.
Well one good thing about coming in early and opening the cigar shack is that I get to leave early. Nice change of pace, though it doesn’t happen too often. Friends are posting online about how beautiful a day it is outside. I would like to find out for myself but I will have to wait until Thomas comes in which should be in less than an hour. I
do appreciate it being so slow that I will more than likely have this entry completed by the end of the day, or even perhaps by midday. Of course there could always be something worth writing about which if that is the case, then I will simply have to include it. Not such a big deal, though I am hoping nothing happens.
Zack is in the Caribbean, Bradley has the day off, Thomas and Jerry Vale are likely en route to the cigar shack. FedEx are making their deliveries though I am not expecting anything really. UPS stops by in the afternoon and though we did get a delivery yesterday we might get more today. I am glad that Zack finally ordered my favorite, the LFD Air Bender Valiente. Last time I had to order them from our competitor.
Now I am home. It was quite a long day. Thomas was starting a six day stretch and was not in that good of a mood. I did my best to get him to smile or laugh but it didn’t really take. Had a few laughs with Jerry Vale though and that was fun. Overall the day crept by. Not much in sales going on. But I am home now and would rather not think of the cigar shack until tomorrow.
Bill and I are watching the President on TV tonight so that should be good.
08 Rock N’ Roll Suicide
Having the time off from the cigar shack is quite nice. I haven’t been doiong anything extraordinary, just keeping it burning at a low flame. It works for me. Bill has been stupendous of course. Always there, always supportive and always ready to take the wheel when it needs to be taken. I suppose that could be why he enjoys being a bus driver, a big wheel to steer and Bill is happy.
We’ve been watching movies lately. Last night we watched Snatch which he had never seen before. He does like the British gangster thing and definitely made the connection between Snatch and Pulp Fiction which it so deftly resembles. Bill went to bed after that and I stayed up watching something on cable, definitely unmemorable.
Bill was up and out around 8:00 this morning and I lay in bed trying to avoid the sun streaming through the blinds. A passionate kiss and a strongly worded declaration of love was said before he headed out the door. I got out of bed a little bit earlier than the past few days and made some coffee before stepping into the shower.
After reading emails and updates I headed to the supermarket where I saw the mighty Isis once again. It was the last time for the year. She couldn’t wait until 4:15 when she gets off of work and here it was around 10:30, with a ways to go. I headed home and had a nice breakfast and read the paper which is something that gets rarer and rarer these days.
I once again headed into the city a while after that. I needed a new calendar and figured Barnes & Noble would be the way to go since I still had a Barnes & Noble gift card to use. Alas, the calendar pickings were nearly nonexistent unless I wanted a Dilbert or a Jack Russell terrier calendar. Still I wandered around a bit and mainly looked at books that I had taken out of the library.
It was certainly a nicer day weather wise, than yesterday and I had a cigar as I walked up Park Avenue South. Covering all bases, yesterday was Park Avenue itself and today was Park Avenue South. I eventually walked up to the bus terminal where there was another line like the day before.
I was a little bit earlier today so I was more up in the line, meaning that I was able to get on the bus unlike yesterday where I was turned away. Still, I had to stand for the ride back to Hoboken but I didn’t mind. I made it back home safe and sound, cleaned the apartment a bit and had a nice dinner.
That’s about it. It has been quite a mellow day and the evening promises to continue in such a manner. I did check my work email and saw the latest schedule, making sure I didn’t read any other email about so & so leaving the cigar shack corporation with an ‘Auf Wiedersehen’. Not sure if I will write tomorrow so I will wish you all the best wishes for the new year.
02 These Days Nico
It’s a Friday from what I gathered. And so far it’s been quite alright. The day started after having a good night’s sleep. Bil was able to stay awake when I got home last night so that was very good. He stayed awake for about an hour then he turned in.
I stayed up long enough to watch Brian Eno on the Colbert Report and Brian was charming as ever. And the singing of ‘Lean On Me’ with Michael Stipe along with Eno and Stephen Colbert was priceless. I was glad I watched it and even happier that I recorded it so I can show it to Bill since he basically knows a little bit about Eno but never heard him speak. So now he can.
I had the honor of meeting with Brian Eno in the 1990’s when I was working at Skyline Studios. He was producing Laurie Anderson and I never expected to meet him but there he was. I invited him and Laurie Anderson to Weehawken for a pseudo macro-biotic dinner and they politely declined. I’m sure I have written about this before.
I did ask both Brian Eno and Laurie Anderson to sign some albums for me and they did so gladly. I still have them safely hidden away. I watched the Colbert Report again this morning as I was getting ready to head out.
Once on the street I ran into Mike C and we walked to the bus stop. He was doing some power walk thing and slowed down considerably to talk since I power walk for no man. I got on the bus after Mike power walked away and was joined by neighbor Deborah at the next stop.
She was getting ready for the weekend whereas for me it was just another day. It was a fun ride though, lots of laughs though we did wonder why after 14th Street the bus driver wasn’t stopping for anyone anymore. Once again Deborah went her way and I went my way and headed to the subway platform.
The train arrived and soon I was near the cigar shack. I had exceptional sales yesterday and that helped my spirits today. It was Zack and Jerry Vale with the return of Thomas working alongside me today. It wasn’t a home run day but I did hit a few triples.
Right now Thomas is playing Pale Blue Eyes by the Velvet Underground which I think is one of his favorite songs and I am happy to report that I turned him onto the song, but not the band. One more day of work then two days off and I can’t wait.
Plan to reconnect with Bobby Rissotto over the weekend. He contacted me about something and I responded. Now he wants me to call him and I certainly plan on doing that. I haven’t seen him in a while so perhaps it’s an invite to his swank holiday party.
26 minutes left in the store hours, then a train ride and a bus ride and I will be home to see Bill fast asleep. He has to get up at 2:30 tomorrow morning since he has to drive a bus.
Oh I certainly have had better days than this one. This one was one of the worst. Bad enough that I wound up having the most morbid thoughts on my lunch hour which did not prove to be relaxing. Every time I think I have a grip on the situation, it doesn’t turn out to be that way.
I am sure the gods are laughing at me. It started out this morning, with my computer monitor. I know you get what you pay for and this monitor I got for free a few years ago, maybe two or three years ago from BIO-IB. An office monitor, probably in use for a few years before I got it, and it was more than likely on all the time. So yes I got what I paid for.
It worked well for a few years and this morning it was kaput. It started acting up a few days ago, I would turn it off and hope for the best. And it worked but hope ran out and now I have a rectangular doorstop. Of course being plugged in like I am I need a monitor.
I have the computer that Bill bought for me last year for the holidays as a way to get me to not use his Mac which does not get used at all. It’s his Mac and I suppose boundaries must be maintained and it most definitely his prerogative to allow or disallow my use of his computer. I checked the cables and the connections and everything seemed to be in order.
With no computer my morning routine was cut short and I was on the street a few minutes earlier than usual. And I called Bill as I walked to the bus stop. I told him the situation with the monitor and he asked if I checked the cables and the connections.
I even texted Rand to see if he had any ideas, ideas on where to get a good monitor on the cheap. He responded that Best Buy was having a sale, but alas I am still supporting the boycott of Target/Best Buy so that would be out of the question. I decided to kill some time and head over to Radio Shack on Washington Street.
I wound up buying a monitor for a little over $100.00 which was the price Rand quoted for Best Buy. I wasn’t about to lug a monitor to work so I asked if I could buy it then and there and have someone pick it up later on, someone meaning Bill. I know I should have checked with Bill to see if he could do it and luckily for me he said he could when I asked.
The sales person was a it hesitant on the whole thing but I was fortunate to convince him that it was on the up & up. The ride to work was uneventful, I rode with neighbor Deborah who was supportive and offered hope that something might happen for me where she works and as much as I would like to believe in that I do not hold out much hope on it.
I mean, I like pets, but the ASPCA? I am not so sure, yet I do prefer pets to people. The cigar shack was moribund at best, Frank Burns assuming the role of liter while Zack went to lunch then to meetings and was gone for the rest of the day.
Just as well since Zack hasn’t been to keen on anything that I do, having replaced Thomas on the shit list since Thomas has been on vacation for the past 5 days. Overall it’s been a stone cold drag today. I do not like the situation but must bide my time until something better comes along.
11 Road to No Regret