Operator? Get me Tupac…

Soooo. You’ve heard the news. Michael Jackson is dead. Brought to the hospital under not-quite-clear circumstances, something about a maybe heart attack and a deep coma. Regardless of the circumstances, the media is all aflutter.

On the one hand, the neurotic in me is thinking “Why is everybody dying this week??? What’s going on???”

 

  

On the other hand, the sheer instantaneous nature of the announcement is a clear example of our changing times and manners of communication. My first inkling of the news was in fact not from the news, but from a coworkers changed MSN status. Nowadays CNN no longer has breaking information but is in fact trying to keep up with the likes of Perez. There’s good and bad to this. While it’s nice to know that the media machine is now open to more opinions than that of the right wing money based corporately driven illuminati, it also means that it’s open to all manner of others, credible or not. Not just to left wing extremism (which does exist, and can be just as dangerous when we like the think that we’re correct just because “we’re not them” – although I don’t hear any left wing Nancy Graces losing their mile-high shit over social injustice), but to anyone with a computing device and $30 a month worth of internet. Anybody can say anything and be taken seriously – how many times do we have to be reminded that Wikipedia is not a citable source?

Not to digress from the issue at hand. I just couldn’t help but get a little boggled at how fast the alternate-media world moves. Clearly I’m a part of it, with my itty bitty corner of the blogosphere. But never in a million years do I consider the possibility that someone reads my opinion and takes it as flat out truth. So while I’m all for free speech and the idea that more information is always better than restricted information, sometimes it worries me. When the bottom falls out of the legitimacy of our media sources (or when you realize that there hasn’t been much legitimacy all along – if you haven’t seen Wag the Dog, go do it now), are we all going to start believing everything Google says?

Because here’s the thing: I don’t believe it.

No, seriously.

It all seems a little too crazy. It could be that the quickly adultifying kid in me is outright floored by the sudden removal of a cultural icon. Because love him or hate him – and I do a little of both – you can’t deny his massive presence. It’s difficult when you reach the age where you start to realize that you have “your” music and all this crap kids listen to will never be as good as what you listen to. Or when you realize that this is only going to continue – people I knew of and followed and listened to will drop out of existence, and my eventual children will have no idea what significance it has. I can’t say it’s so much an existential crisis as an unpleasant reality check, but I’m not a fan thus far.

Or it could be that in these modern times with the advent of nano-second communication and hyped up media flurry, it would be all too easy to just disappear. One little tweet can rocket a myth through cyberspace with enough impact to shut down Google and Wiki. And while one could argue back and forth about MJ’s status in our popular culture, from regarded musical icon to tabloid freakshow, one certainly can’t deny his measure of bizarreness. Of all those recently departed, MJ would have more reason than any to make a grandiose departure from public life.

So maybe I’m just in denial. Or maybe I’m just tired of believing everything the internet says. Or maybe I’m a little freaked out at the undeniably bizarre coincidence of so many characters finding their ultimate end in such a short period of time. Either way, I’m still expecting years and years of ‘recently discovered’ singles to start filling the shelves. Burrito appearances shouldn’t be too far behind.

 

“Hello, Operator? Get me Tupac. Yes, Tupac. You see, Michael is on his way over to chill with him for a bit, and I just wanted to give him a heads up. Don’t lie to me. I know you have the number.”

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A Triumphant Return

Word up my internet peeps!

You will rarely catch me in as good a mood as I am right now, so soak it all in while you can. I am back from my vacation, refreshed, relaxed, loved up, and ready to tackle the rest of the year until Josh and I can be together full time. Last year’s vacation had too many chunks of time cut away by his work schedule, and the travelling part of it was horrendous. He also had a court date the day after my return, and none of the legal shit had been sorted out yet – our future, while undoubtedly involving each other, was filled with uncertainty, obstacles, and plans kept in limbo by forces beyond our control. It was all a little scary, and next to impossible to will myself back on the bus to go home.

This year was different. With no more court to take up sick days, he had the full week off to spend time with me. Ten solid days of loving, sleeping, eating, singing, visiting, shopping, laughing, cooking, kissing, dancing, drinking, wii-ing, and just generally being. A proper vacation. Even when it came time to leave, I was still feeling great.

The next steps to getting together are slowly forming a solid groundwork – talking to lawyers, looking at colleges, setting loose dates and vague to-do lists. Nothing is set in stone yet, of course. But on the way back to the airport, I was feeling alright. Instead of last years dread, anxiety, and futile resentment towards space, time, and other human beings, this year I was nothing short of psyched. Instead of thoughts of “How long until we see each other again?” and “What’s going to happen next?” it was more like “Ok, I’m going to go get things ready up in Canada with the paperwork and the research and the phone calls, and I’ll see you soon! Like for reals this time! Holy crap, woot!”

So yes, I would say it was a good vacation. And with ten days of “What do you want to do today Napolean?” (although I never got around to actually saying that, but now I really wish I had), there was much in the way of fun and adventure. You’ll be regaled with tales for weeks to come, and pictures of course. But for now, while my fridge is still empty and my bags still unpacked, here are some brief highlights:

– Late night grocery shopping at Walmart!

– Confederate flag bikinis and hot tubs!

– We went on the radio! Details and clips coming soon!

– Great adventures in American dining establishments and their patrons!

– Saw the Hangover! Go see it! Now!

– 2 a.m. weight lifting contest (Josh totally won!)

– Strippers!

– Copious amounts of junk food!

– Vikings and dragons from space!

– Licking inappropriate objects! Surprise, it’s not the strippers!

 All that and more, but right now I’m starving because I spent last night getting piss drunk with Talea and didn’t get groceries. It was totally worth it.

Tick…Tick…Tick…

It’s starting to hit me. Our vacation is almost here.

Don’t get me wrong, June is still sucking so far. The morons are worming their way out of the woodwork faster than I can squish them appropriately and diplomatically deal with them. At the office, on the train, out on the street. Tourist season is upon us and nobody will get the hell out of my way. I still want to knock a few people down. But it just dawned on me last night that in less than one week I’ll be on my way to the airport.

Holy crap.

I have so much to do! I’ve been so busy just trying to keep my head on straight and not walk in front of an oncoming bus that I haven’t actually sat down and, oh, for example – packed. I have bags of new clothes littered about the place, a new suitcase full of paper stuffing and packing tape from whence it came at the mall, and thats pretty much it. New bra? Still at the store, waiting to be tried on thirteen million ways. New tiles to put down so my landlords don’t have to venture into my bedroom? Still mostly in the box. I did manage to rearrange the apartment to my greater liking, but now I’ve got more crap to throw out, and yet more tiles to put down where furniture used to be. Also, I still have to get the um…waxing…done.

OH DEAR GOD ALMIGHTY, DO YOU HAVE ANY IDEA WHAT THEY DO TO YOU???

Yeah, I’m a little bit scared about that part, but I’ll suck it up.

I also have to go get travel insurance. I’m going to the states, after all. I don’t want to have to pay for a broken arm with a leg. (And of course, if you don’t get insurance, you’ll get hit by a bus, because thats how it works.) It’s not expensive, and only takes five minutes of your time at the bank, but really? When the hell did I start having to worry about insurance?

So I’m spinning around in circles right now just trying to remember everything I have to remember. I couldn’t find a decent clip or even pic on the internet, but does anyone remember that episode of the Simpsons where there’s a fire drill at the power plant? And one guy in the background just kind of panics, running in a circle going “fire, fire, fire, fire, fire, fire, fire, fire…”? I kind of feel like that – trying so hard to keep track of everything I have to do that I’m not actually getting anything done. I haven’t even dyed my hair! Honestly, this skunk stripe is getting ridiculous.

And as for Josh? I haven’t seen him for more than a half hour here and there late at night for about a week now. We’ll be staying at his brother and sister-in-law’s place (who I like to call my almost-in-laws, have I mentioned how awesome these kids are? I heart them) and they’re converting the car-port into a spare room. Red tape abounded for so long that they only recently got the go ahead to start building, and so they’re busting ass just about round the clock to get it done. The time apart iss rough on Josh and I, being so used to spending most of almost every evening together, but it’ll be worth it once I get down there. Poor Josh is seriously going to need this vacation after all that work!

At least he has time off from his job this year. He had to work through the week during our last vacation, so it’ll be more than awesome to actually get to spend so much time together. And unfathomably, after how long it took to get here, it’s now just days away. I’ll just have to not bite my nails down to nothing in the meantime while watching the clock!

Hurry up or I'll get the hammer!

Hurry up or I'll get the hammer!

Almost there….almost there…

Dear June

Dear June,

The month, I mean, as opposed to anybody in particular named June. May was a little awkward for me, since it’s very difficult to scream ‘fuck you May!’ when one of your bestie’s has the same name, no matter how shitty the month has been. However, I don’t know anybody named June, so here goes.

jcle

My name is June and I will fuck your shit up!

It’s only day 1 of you, dear June, and you’re already pissing me off.

Firstly, you took forever and a goddamned day to get here. Do you not realize that I’ve got a year-in-the-making vacation scheduled mid-you? How about showing up on time instead of making each day drag on until it feels like my time off is still six months away? Can you swing that? Hell, I show up to work on time, and I’ve only been there for two years. Have the centuries of your existence in the Gregorian calendar made you so bitter that you just started showing up whenever you damn well feel like it? Apparently so.

Secondly, you’ve chosen to start on a Monday this time around. That’s just thrilling. Because Monday’s don’t suck enough without it being the first of the month as well. I’m sure you don’t care, dear June, but in my particular industry there are reasons (that I won’t go into here, as rumour has it my uber bosses now float around the interweb) why the first of the month is particularly shitty. Nobody likes the first of the month. Bills are generally due on the first of the month. People are shitty, cranky, and oftentimes downright unreasonable on the first of the month. They’re impatient, busy, and intolerable. And as an added kick, most people I’ve had to deal with today are a little bit extra pissy since you’ve decided to start off with shitty grey weather instead of your much hoped for clear skies and warmth. Good job, keep up the excellent work.

Also, speaking of keeping up employment, of all days to load heaps of criticism on my work environment, it’s sure awesome that you chose today. Really adds the icing to the cake. Nothing makes me feel better about my life, 90% of which costs money, than to hear from the source of said money “by the way, you suck.”

Super.

Lastly, it’s really sweet of you to send my landlords over to fix a plumbing problem in my bathroom today. I haven’t yet fixed some of the damage caused to the walls and floors by former rabbits/tantrums/roomies yet, so the extra paranoia has been a great touch all day. I’m hoping that they didn’t venture into the bedroom, where the damage is my fault as opposed to the condition of the main areas, where the damage is mostly due to unsticky floor tiles and ancient plumbing.  However, I still don’t know. Why? Because on the way out, my landlords naturally turned the lock on the doorknob to my apartment, instead of just the deadbolt above it. Unbeknownst to them, as I rarely need to call them, I don’t use it. It’s a shitty fiddly closet lock, and rather superfluous with a deadbolt above it. So on my way out, I flip the deadbolt and head on my merry way. Never in a million years would it have occured to me this morning that they would, as good landlords, lock up properly after vacating my place instead of the half-ass job I usually do. It’s only today that I find the need for that second key, locked neatly away inside my apartment with the key to the garbage room.

Greeeeaaaaat.

So now they’re on their way, from way north of the rush-hour besodden city, with much in the way of unnecessary apologies. I can’t even pretend to blame them for this one. This particular mishap is nobody’s fault but my own. But given how the rest of this day has gone so far, I’m going to go ahead and just pile that on with everything else you’ve screwed up today, dear June.

Consider this a performance review, June. If you don’t have a better attitude starting tomorrow morning, you’re fired.

By a fat guy in a wig, no less.