There are many advantages to a home office: Short commute, no gas costs, no traffic jams, a comfortable work environment, no pants . . . Unfortunately, there are also disadvantages. The refrigerator is only a short walk away. It is easy to forget to shower, or even get dressed for the day. Six dogs in a small house inevitably leads to the overwhelming aroma of dog flatulence . . . Continue reading
My fifteen minutes of fame begin tonight with the final Allman Brothers concert of the season at the Beacon Theatre. For all my hard work and dedication, I will be listed somewhere in the closing credits as the Master Hamster Wrangler. I should probably choose a bit more dignified a title for the Clapton concerts in May . . .
For those of you who don’t know it, I quit my job in July. Since then, I have been living off my good looks and great personality. In my basement. With frogs and lizards. Well, the day has come, and I am finally workin’ for the man again. In this case, the man happens to be the same company that I have been doing consulting for since quitting my last job in July, so I have exchanged higher wages and the ability to do whatever I want (work, pick belly-button lint, or read novels for 3 days straight) for job stability, employer-paid insurance and a company laptop. I hope the man is gentle with me, but not in a compassionate-conservative, drug you and touch you kind of way. Fortunately, I am still working remotely, so I don’t have to get a pair of office sweats or start shaving/bathing/grooming on a regular basis yet. Wish me luck!
So I’ve been self-employed for a month now. Other than the whole hassle of getting insurance and a very slow expense report reimbursement from my first customer, it is going well. No more dealing with the idiocy of Autonomy’s U.K.-based management team is very nice indeed. Now if I could only find insurance other than COBRA.
I gave my two week notice this week. With all of these conflicting emotions, I don’t know whether to laugh with joy or scream ecstatically with excitement and, um, joy. I think I’ll go with joy. It’s a big step, but as long as the kids don’t decide to get sick, it will be months before we are homeless. Joy!!!
Yes, I’ve been traveling for work this week. I just spent the last three days in San Francisco: Monday and Tuesday in the financial district and Wednesday at SFO. I have decided I travel too much, so I’m going to try for a new job that requires less travel. Maybe I’ll be a flight attendant.*
Too much time in airports dealing with crappy airlines makes me a very cranky boy. With the latest cutbacks and budget airlines, things are only going to get worse. Why fight it?– I want to start my own airline. Not only will I charge extra for checking luggage, using the overhead space and for blankets and pillows, I’m charging for everything else. You want a seat cushion? Those will be rented by the hour here at RoadTrip Airways. Water landing and you want to use that seat cushion as a flotation device? Please be sure to pay one of our friendly flight attendants the flotation fee, plus the $20 drying/restocking fee. If a hotel can charge me to store my own water in the mini-bar, I sure as hell will be charging customers to dry out and replace the seat cushions. I’m not stingy, though. In the event of a loss of cabin pressure, oxygen masks will be available for less than a dollar per every five minutes. My advice is to fly only full flights, however, otherwise chipping in for the tank of fuel is going to be a bit pricey.
Okay, time for bed. Hopefully I will get some sleep. It’s going to be tough with Jennie’s snores and moans. She pauses between snores every 10-15 seconds to moan “no!”, followed by either “eat squirrel” or “eat squirrels” and the occasional “yes!”. I think she’s spent too much time around the dogs lately. I am actually kind of surprised her legs aren’t twitching, because that sure as heck sounds like a chase dream to me. Fortunately, most of the dogs’ chase dreams aren’t punctuated by snores that sound so much like someone trying to snort a Jell-O-covered watermelon up each nostril. Damn, it’s going to be a long night . . .
*Just kidding. I’m going to be a pilot.
I don’t ever want to live here again, but there was definitely a certain excitement driving from the airport to my hotel. It was cool but comfortable. I think it’s the Pacific. I felt it as we landed, when I opened my eyes, looked out the window and saw we were skimming over the bay. It came back again while driving from the airport to the hotel as we hit the stretch of 101 just before Candlestick (or whatever bs name they now have for it) Park. Still, that was enough to open my senses, take me from exhaustion to excitement and curiosity. I am an ocean boy and even the poor third cousin that is San Francisco bay brings back feelings I haven’t had for a while. Idaho is beautiful, but I miss the ocean. I miss the smell of salt air and fish-whiz, or whatever the combination is that you just can’t get by tossing some kosher salt in a pot of water. More precisely, I’m a Pacific Ocean boy. 2.5 weeks in Manhattan, Easter on Long Island, those had no affect on me. Knowing the Pacific is just beyond that bay, just over the ridge? Wow! I’m stuck in yet another hotel, but for the time being, I feel like I am home.
Wow — what a fancy hotel: douche bonnets and a scale so that I can watch my weight go up up up. Yay! I didn’t get my free tickets, by the way.
Yay! And look at this, happy shampoo!
Where’s the angry conditioner and the morose shampoo? I don’t know if I can use my bathroom for anything other than bathing; the toilet paper’s just too pretty in its little pink bow!
I’m definitely back in the west. Gargoyles give way to cow skulls.
What else? Well, assuming I am still with the Borg, I may be heading to either Ottawa or Germany shortly. Could be fun. Much more pleasant than Bogota. Oh well, nothing to do but watch some Futurama.
My last excursion was up to China Town, which led me to the following discovery: I am not ready for authentic Chinese cuisine. Fried duck tongues? Pass. Snails and pork intestine in porridge? Pass. Snails and crispy fins? Yes, still pass. Speaking with the only person I know who has admitted to eating pork intestine, I learned that they “taste like crap.” Since this is coming from a Chinese woman, I am willing to accept it as an accurate assessment. Who would have guessed?- the conduit for crap tastes like crap. As the punchline goes — Alimentary, my dear Watson!
No Chinese food today. Instead, I am going to the Long Island cousins and enjoying an Easter dinner away from home. True, I would rather enjoy an Easter dinner at home, but it doesn’t look like that is going to happen this year.
Yesterday after the Natural History Museum, I had lunch at NorthWest, a café on Columbus Avenue. Halfway through my meal, Matt Dillon and his friend Lease, who were on the way out of town to visit Matt’s sister for Easter, came in and sat at the table next to me. Or maybe it was ‘Lise, I’m not sure. It sounded like Lease. Being an avid people-watcher and eavesdropper, it was great fun. While Matt fidgeted and wolfed down his eggs Benedict, I stared out the window at the gawkers. Most people walked by, oblivious to being so close to greatness, blind to the shining star that is Celebrity. Okay, I’m playing things up a bit here — most people just walked by. Really, I shouldn’t mock the famous. Considering that nobody ever comes up to me and says “Hey, you’re that guy who put all those silly comments in the C-NET web sites! You hack together some great code, man . . . can I have your autograph?”, I think I deserve the chance to mock, dammit! Crap, off-track again.
A few, though, would look in, then do a double-take. They would then slow down and whisper something to their friend, who would also turn, trying not to be too noticeable, and they would then either stare unabashedly, or argue over whether it was really Matt. Yes, everyone on Columbus Avenue in New York walks in pairs, or did so this Saturday. I just sat there, eating my wild mushroom ravioli, then later my apple cobbler, enjoying the viewing opportunities and wondering whether I should start making faces to see how many people I could distract. Is it rude to make people laugh while they are trying to stare at a celebrity?
So, what do the famous talk about? Well, Matt likes to talk about bread, pastries, and the Sicilian Mafia, the myths behind the color of blood oranges, and being in a cave. Waking up in the dark and thinking he was trapped in a cave, actually. All in all, a great day for an eavesdropping people-watcher.
Hey, what about Rental? Or Lease, or whatever her name was? Oh yeah, she had a salad (Cobb?), was very blonde with entirely too much make-up and rarely spoke. When she did, she had a habit of mangling words. Much too painful to listen to, thank you.
Is it April already? The months keep slipping away . . . just a month ago it felt like March. Whatever. It’s April, and I am sitting around in my boxers in a hotel overlooking the World Trade Pit. What a life. Earlier today it was still April, but at least I wore pants. Had I not, I’m sure my wanderings through the American Museum of Natural History would have been considerably shorter. Great place, especially the butterfly exhibit. Here, have a peek:
Great, isn’t it?
I have been stuck here in Manhattan for over two weeks on a job that I was told would take a day or two. I feel somethwat misled. Since I had to work weekends as well, I was promised comp days. Hopefully this is true, otherwise I think my seven-year employment with, er, my employer, is about to come to an end.
Two weeks; I must have done more than just tour the Natural History Museum. Why yes, since you ask, I have. I also spent some time wandering Chinatown, wandered through some graveyards and church grounds, and discovered that the Wall Street Bull has some serious brass cojones.
Okay, that’s all for today children. In other words, that’s the end. Groan . . .