Monthly Archives: October 2008

This aggression will not stand

I was a bit disheartened to discover that some killjoy had posted an official “No Dumping” sign at the very spot in the alley were all the choicest finds can be had.

Where would I go when I needed to pick up new home furnishings for free? Would I be forced to go outside my own alley in search of cast-off desks, chairs, lamps, framed portraits, coffee tables, night stands and the like? How would I be able to carry home anything I might find? No one was going to put anything good in the alley across the way… the alley where the commode was left months ago and still stands.

Four hours later, my faith in my fellow citizens had been restored. A sweet blue wooden bookshelf stood defiantly under the official sign, serving as a physical reminder that we will not be dissuaded.


She wants more, man… she’s gotta feed the monkey

Speaking of monkeys, I saw the most adorable Halloween costume at Target, but it was only in a size suitable for toddlers.

It was a sock monkey!

The suit had a tail and the hat was the sock monkey face.

It was so cute, I almost wanted to have a toddler so s/he would be petulant and refuse to wear it.

I’m just gonna go find a cash machine

As I approached the grocery store ATM, a disturbed Englishman rushed over to tell me that the machine was broken. I nodded and ignored him, inserted my card, tapped in my PIN, selected the “$40 cash withdrawal” option, and retrieved the two bills.

The Englishman stood there with his mouth hanging open. He managed to say, “They said the machine was broken”. I looked at him, but said nothing.

I took my card out of the slot once it was returned and this guy actually grabbed my hand in order to turn it over while he said, “How did you put your card in, then?”

I wanted to say, “Look, Pedro, I don’t know how they do things down in Juarez, but here in LA, we have a little something called Concealed Carry, understand?” but I was too busy try to work out his accent as he talked to the machine and tried to convince it to dispense some dollars.

In the end, I scored seventy-five cents and a blue button from the return slot at the Coinstar.

They’ve got us working in shifts

I should just rent out a room to the local police, since they show up my house so often. And I didn’t even do anything this time! Whenever police should be called, like when my neighbors host all-night boozing parties and shouting matches and disturb my personal peace, the authorities are always noticeably absent.

Today’s incident began when I posted an item on Craigslist in the “Free Stuff” category. I’ve posted things for free before, and there’s a fair number of flaky responders. There are people who say they’ll be “right over” and never show. From experience, I know to ignore the first five respondents, because those are the trolls with a lot of time on their hands.

Once I’d confirmed that a reasonable sane older gentleman would be stopping by around midday, I readied the item in question. A truck drove slowly past the front of the house and I assumed my “buyer” had arrived. Out in the courtyard, I could see him walking up the sidewalk.

Like so many others who have walked up that same sidewalk, he stepped face first into an enormous spider web and began flailing. The web’s occupant was unimpressed by the catch of the day and started rebuilding. My buyer eventually calmed down, located the spider, took off his right shoe and started swinging it. While the spider was slowly beaten to death, I continued to stand behind the gate and watch the scene unfold.

I opened the gate for my buyer after he’d put his shoe back on. He apologized, but really… for what? He checked out the item and said that he needed to go home for a hand truck. He said he’d be back in fifteen minutes.

Five minutes after he left, the police were at my door. Five minutes! I never get that kind of response when I call for actual emergencies.

The officer said that they’d received a call about a truck driving slowly up the street, and that a confused looking man emerged once the truck had been parked. This man then walked over to this address and began acting agitated – pointing at the sky, shouting, and even taking off his shoe. He walked in and came back out very quickly, got back in his truck, made a U-turn and sped off.

I explained the situation to the officer. He laughed and we agreed that the only crime that had been committed was a Spider Homicide.

Jeff Lebowski. Come on. This other Jeffrey Lebowski. The millionaire.

Recently I was told that it is a “very American” thing to refer to people by the way in which you are related. In other parts of the world, you wouldn’t say, “My brother accidentally set fire to our grandfather’s collection of antique matchsticks.” Instead, you’d say, “<Insert name of brother> accidentally set fire to <insert name of grandfather>’s collection of antique matchsticks.” Or, more likely, you’d say, “ZOMG!!!1! Did you see that?! I didn’t know flames could even reach that high!!”


Conversations which use people’s actual names without an explanation of who they are tends to confuse me. This confusion is usually at the source of many of my social faux pas, the bulk of which are too harrowing to repeat in this fair medium.


The latest example:


Me: This email forward says that Holly has an infection and a home health nurse.


Office Mate: Yes.


Me: I thought Holly was still at the hospital.


Office Mate: No, she’s at home.


Me: She just had her baby yesterday. Why did they send her home so soon?


Office Mate: …


{The Boss walks in}


Me: What kind of an infection does Holly have?


The Boss: Holly has cancer.


Me: Did she know that while she was pregnant?


The Boss: Not OUR Holly that works here and that just had the baby. Holly in Public Relations.


Me: People need to stop forwarding me emails that don’t give out last names or departments.


Office Mate: Or you could just start paying attention.


Me: I’m just going to stop asking questions.


Woo, and if you must, hoo…

Hello, again 🙂