Web Toolbar by Wibiya


What To Do on A Warm Spring Day

While walking to work this morning, I stopped off at Bryant Park to watch Usher. He was performing for Good Morning America. Gotta love New York.

It's a bright and warm day. Now that I'm married, I question why God made the following:

  • Brazil.
  • Tight jeans.
  • Nice legs.
  • High heels.
  • Boy shorts.
  • Short skirts.
  • Baby tees.
  • Buxomness.
  • Pretty toes.
  • The office.
  • Manhattan.
  • Women other than my wife.
  • Women who know they look good.
  • Manhattan sidewalks and offices overflowing with buxom women in tight jeans, boy shorts and short skirts with nice legs wearing baby tees and rockin' high heels and pretty toes once Spring comes and stays.
It seems that warmer weather has finally arrived to stay for more than one day in a row and much like men who pull their convertibles out of the garage, women pull out/spruce up everything on their personage that seemingly was in hibernation during the winter. This isn't the case for every woman inhabiting this great city. God bless 'em, but they leave their houses hot under-dressed/overdressed messes.

I am a married man and I have a daughter, but I am not blind (thanks to contacts), nor am I any less hot blooded than I was as a teenager (although a whole hell of a lot smarter and wary of nightmares wrapped in pretty packages or wearing high heels). This is why I have a wife and kids. I don't spend time staring women down or swiveling my head around my neck every time I pass a pretty face or a fine physique, but I'd be lying if I said I didn't notice. My wife --- quite the looker, herself --- is so convinced of my skill at this that when walking together, she scouts out women she presumes are my "type" and accuses/punches me for looking before I even get the chance. In these situations, I often tell her, "You're my type, baby." She typically responds with a smile and then tells me I'm full of it.

On warm days women, who know (and are convinced) they look good, come out of the woodwork. How do I deal? I hide behind my beloved aviators and stay out of trouble. Another option is to never leave home, but that would be no fun.


How To Take Back the Day

This morning, I had an orthodontist’s appointment in Queens, coincidentally located in the shopping district of my old neighborhood --- where I settled down after settling down in New York from Chicago. Since becoming an acolyte of Invisalign, I’ve gone to each of my check-up appointments expecting the worst, only to be in and out (less a couple hundred bucks) in twenty minutes or so.

Before hopping back on the train to go into the beast that is Manhattan, I remembered I was starving. I couldn’t find anything I wanted to eat so I settled on a nice hot cup of coffee from an Asian deli off 71st & Continental Avenue. I was getting ready to go underground onto the subway platform when I saw a nice little stretch of park off Queens Boulevard (the Boulevard of Death). I abandoned my thought, found a bench and sat down to enjoy my coffee. I didn’t put on my iPod, I didn’t start texting everyone I know. I just sat down and enjoyed the cool breeze, the sounds of the city and the sun overhead.

It may sound corny, I don’t know, but it was a nice fifteen minute reprieve from being underutilized at work, playing project manager/manservant/dad to the kids, and never-enough husband (I’m joking, sort of). For fifteen minutes I just got to be me, without distraction or interruption. And I basked in it.

Even if it’s only five minutes, a walk during lunch, some reflective time spent staring out a window, everyone should take a moment to themselves in each day. It makes the daily grind a bit more manageable.


Where To Go When You Need To Eat

Looking for someplace to eat some food? Do you need the nitty gritty info and not some high-brow over intellectualized pontificating about stuff that's going to end up in the toilet? Then check out my new site: This Isn't Chicken!

It's not your everyday review site and in the same vein as Makes Me Wanna Holler is an honest and occasionally irreverent perspective on eating out.

Please check me out over there and let me know what you think!


How To Endure Double Standards & pop Crazy Pills

Last week my wife told me she wanted to go to a Happy Hour with friends on Thursday of the same week. I didn't mind, as I never do. It doesn't make sense for neither of us to have a social life. On Thursday, I picked up the kids, fed the baby first then made dinner for myself and my preteen. Despite The Office not being on, the evening was great and actually more relaxing than usual. After flipping channels through too much bad TV my son began playing Wii and my daughter dragged me to the back of our apartment to our room (her crib is across the room from the bed) to show me her summer collection of sandals. While we were there we discussed letters of the alphabet, what happened at the sitter's that day, and she rattled off the names of all her friends, including the friends in her head - the cast of SpongeBob Square Pants.

In the midst of this, something was missing: my wife. I tried to call her on her cell phone just to make sure all was well and, as usual, she didn't answer. I assumed she was having fun and left it alone.

She came in around eleven, by far the longest Happy Hour in the history of Happy Hours. Since the mood was light in the house I cracked a joke at her expense and she didn't find it funny (I spent the next several minutes convincing her it was all in fun). She got comfortable, bathed the baby (even though she was already in her pajamas and half asleep). And then she went to sleep without saying a word.

I was a bit perplexed. Had I gone out saying I was going to be home by eight or nine and then shown up at eleven without as much as a phone call and then gone straight to bed without telling her, I would've woken up in the middle of the night with a knife to my throat. But c'est la vie. Wives are able to do what husbands cannot. It's the trade off that comes when you love someone and then pop a bottle of crazy pills and decide to get married.


He Who Is Last

Two days ago, on my way to work I walked past a homeless man kneeling before his carts of junk praying. He did the sign of the cross, stood and then went on with his day. His skin was dark and leathery, his face was ashen and his clothes were putrid, but he didn’t look crazy.

I was completely floored by this man’s humility, and then shamed by it. Although I bless my food and I do pray as much as I can remember, I can’t remember the last time I fell to my knees in supplication. I haven’t complained once since seeing this. It is so easy in New York City to believe that you don’t have enough, don’t make enough, just aren’t enough of whatever it is you are trying to be. In the city of 8 million stories we swim daily in a rough sea of excess. But there are those among us --- in plain sight --- who have absolutely nothing and somehow manage to make it through the same day someone like myself might consider unbearable.

If I had had a camera I would’ve taken a picture and kept it as a reminder whenever I’m ready to start down a pointless path littered with complaints. Do I strive to do more? Yes. Do I strive to be more? Yes. But I am able to feed and clothe my family and myself and although I am not exactly fulfilled by my work, my work does allow me some financial freedoms --- luxuries I’m sure by that homeless man’s standards. Life is too short to spend it complaining. I’m not going to suggest prayer, as praying isn’t for everyone, but the only thing complaining does is make life worse and give unpleasant, but manageable situations, large teeth and fangs. I’ve been donating to charities lately in an effort to take the focus off me and put it on those in real need. The reward I’ve felt has been indescribable. I encourage everyone to try at least once in their lives.

Interested in making a donation to those in need? Click here.

On Writing, On Blogging

When I started this weblog I never expected it to actually become a blog. My original intention was that it would be a place to showcase my writing. But it seems to be taking on a life of its own, which is fine by me. But I figure now is as good a time as any to showcase some of my writing, both new and old:

If you like what you see, let me know. If you don't, let me know.



Jazz Is For Rainy Days

Spring has gone rogue and my wife has decided to blame me since blaming God is a fruitless exercise. Besides all the natural disasters occurring around the clock around the world, locally, it is freezing and very wet for the end of May. Believe me, if I had that kind of power I definitely wouldn't be wasting it throwing the seasons out of whack.

I love rainy days and very few people in my life understand why. The summer before my senior year of high school I was on lunch at a job when the storm of all storms erupted while I walked back to work from a hot dog spot (Chicago's famous for them). Lightning began to crackle around me and a bolt touched down on the roof of a squat building as I passed it, sending a black plume of smoke skyward. In response to this, I took off sprinting full speed, squealing the entire way back to work. Strangely, I lost my fear of the rain afterwards and have since only feared the rain one time --- I was was in Philadelphia with a fraternity brother and he and I found ourselves in the middle of a storm on his 22-footer out on the Delaware Bay reenacting a Gordon's Fisherman commercial (I was certain I was going to die).

Back to the rain (not to be confused with a torrential downpour): it's soothing. It slows life down to a reasonable pace, slow and smooth like a jazz ballad, melancholy, painful, powerful, insightful and pressed with so much passion it just takes you there each and every time you hear it. Jazz icons like John Coltrane, Miles Davis, Wayne Shorter and Oscar Peterson possessed that ability to create a moment with music and immortalize themselves within it. Kind of Blue by Miles is the number one selling jazz album of all time and one of my all time favorites. The Gentle Side of Coltrane compilation and Speak No Evil by Wayne Shorter don't fall too far behind. Theirs is the music for a rainy day. Put one of these guys in your CD player or your on your iPod and let the day just melt away.

Contemporaries of note who fall into this same category are Terrance Blanchard, Joshua Redman, and Jeremy Pelt. Redman's Moodswing is the perfect album for a rainy day and Jeremy Pelt is a cat not much younger than me who plays his trumpet like a very old soul. Weird Nightmare and Haiku are compositions that sound ripped from the past and not created a few years ago.

I'm very thankful for my father who browbeat me into Jazz. Jazz, as it was explained to me a couple years back by Fred Smith of the Harlem Blues & Jazz Band, "is classical music 'jazzed' up." And Jazz definitely has that effect on what would otherwise be a dreary, gray and rainy day.

For all things Jazz, click here.


What You Believe

I watched Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade with the family last night in preparation for the new Indiana Jones movie coming out this weekend. My wife and son were huddled up on the couch siphoning body heat off one another as NYC still seems unaware that it’s Springtime or May. My daughter ran around the living room screaming, throwing everything that wasn’t nailed down and stripping off all the layers of clothing her mother dressed her in to stay warm. I sat alone on the love seat with a cup of coffee.

Near the end of the movie Indy has go through the formulaic booby traps to get to the Holy Grail. He comes to a point where he has to cross what appears to be a bottomless chasm. He stands there chanting about believing, while his ailing father chants with him (I’m not going to explain any more of the scene – rent the movie).

When Indy’s ready he takes a deep breath and steps out…onto a rocky foot bridge made to look like the other side of the chasm wall.

“It’s an optical illusion,” I said.

“Wait, I don’t get it,” said my son.

“It was there the whole time, all he had to do was believe it was there,” I clarified.

My wife smiled at me and repeated what I said. I thought about it for a second and smiled. How many times in this life do we avoid really living because we’re afraid of falling, afraid of failing, afraid of the unknown, and afraid of the boogey monster? But that opportunity, that job, that deal, that chance was there the whole time, just waiting for you to claim it.

I’m not talking about get rich quick schemes, but the real stuff upon which a rich life is built. If I let fear drive me I wouldn’t be in New York, I wouldn’t be a loving father, I wouldn’t be a husband, I wouldn’t strive for the best in myself (regardless of the outcome), and I wouldn’t be typing these words right now. Yesterday a fraternity brother of mine called me from Atlanta to say goodbye. Through his job he and his family are relocating to Turkey. I know in college he had no idea this was going to happen. I also know he had to do some serious believing to get this job, excel in it, and receive this new, exciting and unknown opportunity.

My life is the collective sum of my beliefs. When it’s stagnant I have to take a step back, dust myself off and fix what it is I’m believing (or not believing).

How many people do you know that make things happen? Do you include yourself on this list? If not, do you ever seriously consider why you're not? Is it everyone else's fault, or is it simply what you believe...about yourself and about your world?

Believe that job / entrepreneurship / chance / man / woman / goal / race / game / house/vacation is yours and if it’s meant to, so it shall be.


How NOT To Have a Stress-Free Morning

At the end of last week, I was greeted with yet again another rainy Friday after a week filled with pointless meetings, too many emails and organizational mumbo jumbo/office politics that left me wanting to take a flying leap from the 7th floor picture windows that are a mere ten steps from my cubicle.

I took my time getting to work that day on what was a fitting end to a week spent rushing to work. A sensible person sets out and irons their clothes the night before, eats a meal at a decent time in the evening, packs their lunch (if they brownbag it to work), and goes to bed at a decent time.

But I’m not sensible.

Most nights I’m up until at least midnight, taking a few moments to myself after putting my house back together in the wake of my 2 y.o. daughter who nightly ransacks every room but the kitchen. Sometimes I pack my lunch, but most nights I convince myself to do it in the morning. I don’t always wash the dishes because I hate washing dishes (I don't have a dishwasher, my wife does: me) and again, I convince myself I’ll do it in the morning. Some nights I'll pack the baby’s bag, but as there’s not too much to put in it I occasionally put this off also. I put nearly everything I own in the cleaners about two weeks ago, so I’ve been wearing the same three shirts for the last eight days. On Friday, as rainy as it was, I was dressed as if I was buying a company. Why? Because my best clothes are the only ones that are clean. And because I’m an early riser who needs no assistance waking up at the crack of dawn, I’ve gotten in the habit of not setting my alarm.

This is not a plan for success…and yet I do it every damn day, fully aware of what the outcome will be:

I oversleep and wake up asking my wife why she didn’t set her alarm (she goes into work later than I do). I stumble into the bathroom, shower, shave and the other “s” and then I take my time getting dressed. Why? Because I have no idea what clothes I'm going to wear and you can only be stylish in the same 3 shirts but for so long no matter how many pairs of pants you may own. After putting an outfit together and doing a handful of pushups to get my blood pumping, I have roughly 30 minutes before my train comes to take me into NYC on time. So what do I do? I make the baby’s bag, wash dishes, dig through the fridge for lunch or a sandwich to make, and the kicker, I have the audacity to make breakfast and on days when I’m truly being indignant I have the nerve to sit down to eat it (most days I stand) and drink a cup of coffee!

Just when I'm ready to leave I practice what my wife calls, fiddle-fartin’, a truly ridiculous ritual where the only thing I can find is my face and the clothes on my back. With only eight minutes left before my train arrives (the train station a comfortable ten-minute walk away), I leave my house sprinting full speed like O.J. in those old Samsonite commercials and arrive on the platform a hot, sweaty mess, out of breath, fighting off an asthma attack from breathing in so much cold air and wondering, “What the Hell is wrong with me?”

I don’t want to give the wrong impression: every day of my work week isn’t like this. I’m pretty organized until about Wednesday. And I’m sure if I enjoyed my job a bit more I might go to bed a little earlier, iron and all that other stuff, rather than staying up late each night in a futile effort to fend off the next day by staying awake as long as possible in the present one.

But this is not the case.

My mornings are interesting, but you’re better off planning for the mundane and stress-free.


Arrogant or Uppity?

The other day I read the latest GQ with Iron Man (Robert Downey, Jr.) on the cover. While reading, I happened upon an interview with Karl Rove, a very smart Bush Baddie who’s apparently reinventing himself as a television commentator. In his GQ interview he made some rather astute observations as a Republican, completely separated from this Obama-Clinton slapfest (that makes the papers at least once a week), much in the same way a mutual friend tells a husband and wife they’re both wrong.

He did however say something throughout his Q&A that stuck in my craw. He repeatedly referred to Obama as “arrogant,” and the disdain in this word leapt off the page. Is Obama thinking highly of himself? Probably, but wouldn’t any human who has experienced his current, rather stratospheric rise to the main stage (whether deserved or not)? Only someone asking for a trouncing would meekly approach the Candidacy of Office of the President of the United States. Would he be arrogant if he were Karl Rove, or George Bush or Bill Clinton? If he were Bill, he probably would.

When I hear arrogant, more than once in one sitting applied to men with skin like mine, it hearkens back to the day of the Uppity Negro --- a black man who can put a sentence together, takes care of himself, dresses well, is responsible and affable, and believes he has the same rights as everyone else in this society --- someone who has clearly lost his mind and lost his place.

I’ve experienced this in reverse. As a Cornell grad, the recipient of a Master’s Degree, someone who uses $5 words every once in a while when speaking, the owner of property, and a person who prefers introspection and reflection to uninformed, bojangle-esque reaction, I have been viewed/treated with wonderment and awe in the workplace and elsewhere as if I am a damn anomaly like Neo of the Matrix Trilogy. Yet nearly all my peers have similar if not better backgrounds that me. We don't live in caves. We don't go into hiding when the sun rises. We're mixed in with the rest of the population. It's laughable at best when it isn't frustrating.

Just because you don’t see something, it doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist.

I, in fact do believe Mr. Obama is arrogant --- arrogant or crazy to be running for President. Has he misspoken a few times on the trail? Yup. So has everyone else. I’m not giving him a pass on his errors, his voting record, experience, blah, blah, blah. But being an arrogant chief of the most arrogant empire the world has ever known is par for the course. If the gang chasing after this title were all white men, I’d bet a lot of money I don’t have to see if arrogance was even considered a point of discussion beyond the personal dislikes between candidates. Former Gov. Elliot Spitzer’s flagrant arrogance only became truly public after his house of cards collapsed on him, not before.

I could be reading more into this than I should, but there's too much to read regarding this man and that word that suggests otherwise.


I Hate Cats

zwani.com myspace graphic comments

Ever since I've known my wife she's had a mammal that grew fur in her home. When we first met it was Rat, a gray and white cat that looked like a Virginia Honeyed Ham with four legs, and Tiger, a sleek house cat with a tuxedo coat. Then there was Mr. Piddles (Piddles for short), a rabbit she bought for $25 at a subway station after being told he would be a cute and cuddly dwarf. Besides the allergic reaction she had that swelled her eyes shut, Piddles is now bigger than a basketball and lives a tortured life in a rabbit condo at my mother-in-law's home. Then during a particularly difficult time in our lives there was Harry Potter, a mutt she got from a shelter out in New Jersey who was the apparent offspring of the devil. That dog took a bite out of me, my wife, Tiger and one of her neighbors before she finally gave up hope and returned him to the shelter. Then she added Lucky (the stupidest tabby to walk the earth) to the brood and then Peanut Butter, the best, friendliest most protective mini long-haired Dachshund ever. Before me there were cockateels, other cats and dogs that trace all the way back to when my wife's parents were dating. A few years back even I (during a stint of unemployment when I sank to the point of hopelessness) adopted 2 stray cats. But I had to give them up to neighbors and friends midway through their kitten-hood.

How lovely.

Not really.

I grew up allergic to most things and as I child I was devastated to know that I couldn't own a cat or dog if I didn't want to spend all my time at home sneezing and clawing out my eyeballs. So I was spared the enviable duty of picking up poop after a dog, housebreaking them so they didn't pee on everything, cleaning up kitty litter, going outside at all insane hours of the night or morning no matter the weather so the dog can pee, getting licked in the face by an animal that is completely comfortable with spending the majority of its spare time licking clean its crotch and butt and eating off the floor, and buying food for anyone other than humans. In the eyes of pet owners, my childhood was probably devoid of the charm that comes with having the love of an animal. A lot of these people walk the streets everyday covered with cat fur thinking it's okay that their furniture looks like someone took a weed whacker to it and that their houses smell like mini zoos. But there are those pet owners who are truly on top of their experience. Their houses are spotless. If their animals shed, they maintain their coats, brushing and cleaning them on a regular basis and making sure they are spayed or neutered while they are still virgins.

Until me, my wife was not this latter person.

I have witnessed the births of entire clans of cats and seen furballs the size of tumbleweeds. Oh yeah, and I still have allergies. But I'm a man, and most of us men can attest to the fact that a woman who loves us (other than mom) dismisses any and all physical complaints, health concerns, or ailments without a doctor's note as pure hypochondria on our parts. Sometimes they say lovingly, "You're such a big baby." And then during adverse times they spew, "You're such a $^%&*@! baby!"

When I knew I was allergic to the animal kingdom, my wife (then just my girlfriend) told me that she paid rent and it was her place. To this day I'm still not exactly sure what this had to do with me having allergies. She also suggested that I take medication when I came over. Because I hate pills and because this was a ridiculous request, I simply suffered. I was that whipped. And then came the doctor's note. Guilt soon followed, but things stayed the same. And eventually came baby and like the Johnson & Johnson commercial says, "Everything Changed."

We bet correctly on the probability of my allergies being a part of my daughter's life and began cleaning house. Lucky had to go. Besides being dumb, he was also crazy and suffered some sort of post traumatic meltdown after we moved in together. He screamed all day and all night during the final months of my wife's pregnancy and finally she gave me the go ahead. He was gone by the end of the week. When the baby was born, Peanut Butter, still a puppy, got so excited about the new addition that he didn't sleep, he spent all his time trying to jump into her crib which caused New Daddy (me) to see red. For his safety (from me) we shipped him off to her mother's until he was mature enough to handle the existence of a person roughly his same size. And he truly is a champ...now.

Then there's Tiger, a cat who is extremely possessive of her owner. The two of them have this thing with each other which apparently pales in comparison to my desire to breathe clean air. Read anything on animal dander and you'll be horrified or at least slightly surprised. I swear I catch this cat liking her whosiewhatsit every chance she gets and when she takes a dump it stinks up everything within sight of the litterbox. I've been respectful of the relationship between my wife and her cat, but I recently decided that I hate cats, period. Unlike dogs, they never learn their place and I actually believe because dogs can be trained, they're the smarter animal. If you put food, plastic, rocks, anything down in front of a dog he will lick the bowl clean, a cat decides what it wants to eat. A dog will learn to sleep in it's bed, sleep outside your room, guard the house, carry your slippers, respond to its name, pull sleds, etc. You can yell a cat's name until you turn blue (an impossibility for a person with my complexion) and they will never learn their name. The allergists (my daughter's and mine) have advised to get rid of the cat or at least keep her out of all the bedrooms (my son was recently diagnosed as being allergic as well). I can't count how many times I've been awakened in the middle of the night to the sound of this deranged feline squealing and scratching at my bedroom door trying to get in. In my angered, half-sleep stupor I've launched all out assaults against her, without contacts or light, stumbling and crashing around my apartment like a wild man.

I could go on forever, but I won't. I hate cats. I'm happy that in spite of my love for my wife, I'm no longer riding the fence on what has been in my heart for so long.



I am yo manager, B$%^&!

It's late. My allergies have launched an all-out assault against me and I have to be up in a few hours, but I've been putting this one off and I don't want too much time to pass or the details to get fuzzy. In a sentence: The Geek Squad is the WORST!

My family computer was fried by a power surge back in March. In doing what made logical sense I went to the Geek Squad. Their commercials would lead you to believe they know what they're doing. Well everything went downhill as soon as a walked through Best Buy's doors.

I ignored several red flags:

  • There was only one person behind the counter.
  • This one person seemed completely unconcerned with the line forming behind the person he waited on.
  • This same person never called anyone for assistance.
  • Another Geek Squad team member emerged from behind a black curtain made of thick shreds of plastic, looked at something on the counter and went back to wherever he came from.
  • It was 11 am. The store had only been open for an hour.
  • All of their prices (not cheap) had a range.
A fraternity brother of mine used to build my computers when I first got out of college. I gave him a grand or two and he spent a day putting together my CPU, no differently than I would play an intense game of Scrabble with a group of friends with large vocabularies. But as with everything, he's married with kids now, and I have no idea where he is and I don't know any real geeks after leaving my last gig.

Which brings me to my second point:

Standing behind a counter wearing dingy black Dockers or 2 dollar black slacks, a white oxford shirt that looks like it was slept in, a black tie you wore to your third grade school Christmas play, white tube socks and black clodhoppers DOES NOT merit you being a geek. Horribly dressed? Yes. Geek? Not necessarily. Ethnic determinants that also don't apply: being African American with large glasses or an untrimmed goatee, or having a mouth full of crooked teeth; neither does being skinny and East Indian or talking incessantly about the computers you have running 24/7 autosaving where you left off in D&D and whatever the hot RPG of the month is. Geek? No. Social misfit? Probably.

Which brings me to my third point:

If I worked for one of, if not the nation's largest consumer electronic retailers I might be pretty adept at repairing computers since I would have access to any and every piece of software and every electronic component I could get my hands on. So it's not a matter of expertise, but rather access and resources. I realized this when I had to speak with the store manager on my 4th visit to the store and he explained what needed to be done on my computer better than any of the Geeks did.

Which brings me to my final point:

I don't know about all Best Buy based Geek Squad operations or the Geek Squad guys that drive around in the VWs, but the one I went to was laden with a batch of Best Buy employees masquerading as computer technicians in ill-fitting Men In Black Casual Friday attire. [Run-on Sentence Alert] And it dawned on me this past Saturday, MAY 3rd, when my computer was finally ready after 3 mix-ups, and 4 visits to the store, when on one visit I witnessed 2 customers ready to throw blows with these guys, and after one of the most ill-handled displays of customer service I've ever witnessed (complete with upselling at every turn), the whole thing was eerily comparable to somewhere else I've had to spend money. I was at the counter with my receipt and there were several Geeks working, all with their backs to the counter, talking amongst themselves. After about 10 minutes of this, one of them turns around and tells me he's sending someone out to help and walks into that 70's lounge area with the black curtain. A guy who had been standing there with me glanced over my way and WTF? was written all over his face. I shrugged my shoulders and said it was a sign of the times. That's when it clicked. One word summed up my entire experience, between the money I spent, the poor service I got and their aloofness to the whole thing: Kinkos. Dave Chappelle beautifully potrayed this experience during the first season of his now infamous show..."I am yo manager, B$%^&!"

The Geeks weren't all bad, but most of them were. But what these clowns don't know, but may find out sooner rather than later, is that I have a business relationship with a Best Buy regional executive and I was simply waiting for this fiasco to end before I let her know how one of her stores conducts business.

Stay tuned...



I don't know if I should title this entry as such, it's a bit strong, but it is true. Today my 12 y.o. son betrayed me...big time. At first I was disappointed, then I actually felt tears coming, then I felt stupid and then the testosterone kicked in and I got angry...very angry. I dealt with the him the way I would an adult, the way I should have with someone who formerly held the moniker of "my best friend." The whole blowup caused my son to cry.

Because I am not alone, my wife weighed in, not disagreeing with my feelings, but with the way I handled the situation, my son and myself. In true man fashion, I let loose on her as well and within minutes I became snarling and sniveling and no one was speaking to me. I went from victim to villain in under 2 seconds.

It is said that a family is a blessing upon a man's life. As of late, I've questioned that notion (biblical suggestion) often. Years ago, I had this picture perfect plan of how I was going to assemble my family. Of course that didn't happen, even though I never set out to actually accomplish it in that way. I know there's no manual on this stuff for anyone, but I feel completely in over my head sometimes. My parents seemed to have done such a better job with me even though this often required them knocking me upside my head to keep me in line (I had a mouth on me). They had less, but I feel like they did more.

The weight is so heavy sometimes, this husband-dad thing. My feelings as of late are the few things I can call mine and like today, I've been letting them all hang out --- good, bad and straight up nasty.

I want to be everything to my kids, and I'd like to be a good husband, but honestly it weighs a lot, sometimes too much. But not enough to break me. I'm going to go to the park to play basketball with my son now and at some point I'll tell him that I love him. They say love is the answer even so few of us know what love really means. Hopefully love will make up for the shortcomings --- real, imagined or otherwise.


One of Those Days

Today was one of those days in a week that is shaping up to be one of those weeks. After waking up with my daughter's foot in my mouth I couldn't understand why the first thing on my mind was surfing the 'net on my iPod until I nearly stepped on it as soon as I got out of bed. That's when I realized that was the last thing I was doing last night before everything went black. I went shivering to the kitchen and washed the dishes I should've washed the night before (we don't have a dishwasher and washing dishes by hand is right up there with Internet porn as far as time-gobbling activities go). After showering under lukewarm water, I gave up the fight I've been waging all week and dressed in winter clothes. Last week I was shedding clothes every day in the 70 degree weather. Today I wore this one corduroy-shirt combination I've worn so much I'm surprised the clothes aren't walking around my house and eating my food.

After I got to work this morning I realized I wore the same shirt two days ago. This is how sick I am of this weather. A few years ago I wouldn't dare commit such an egregious offense, but because now at 30-something I am certain no one gives a damn about me, I could care less what I look like at a job where they have me housed in a temporary loft space that resembles my father's garage (long story). My father's garage can best be described as Home Depot meets Beirut.

I spent most of the morning trying to wake up and most of my afternoon trying to eat my lunch. I had three meetings and a going away party for an employee that kept getting in the way. At five-minutes to six I was back at Grand Central Station and on my train, clueless as to where I'd been most of the day. My iPod died during my ride home and I didn't even have the energy to take my earphones out.

A friend of mine from D.C. called me this later evening while I was out putting gas in the truck and while talking I discovered his day had gone about the same as mine. We had a good laugh about it and then my cell phone died. I think the last time I charged it was Monday night.

You ever had one of those days?