Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Jesus (Pronounced with a HEY-ZEUS)

Jesus (pronounced HEY-ZEUS) was the homeless man that lived under the porch of the guy who lives a few doors down from me. Very rarely do I see the guy who lives INSIDE the building, but I know he’s really old, even older than Jesus, who appeared to be the better part of 60 or 70. Apparently the resident had some kind of agreement with Jesus, whereby Jesus got to sleep under the front porch, and the resident got . . . a lot of Jesus’ junk all over his front yard? I’m not sure how the guy benefited from the agreement, but the residents on the 1500 block of west Nelson street benefitted from seeing Jesus’ smiling face as he rode SLOWLY by on his bicycle. I liked saying hello to him as I walked by, even when the conversation would go like this:

Me: ‘Morning Jesus. How you doing?
Jesus: I’m broke, man.

Damn, Jesus! I know this! I guess I can’t blame him. “How you doing?” is kind of a dumb question when it’s asked of a guy living under a porch, but come on!! His other annoying thing was turning down food. My roommate gave him a patty melt once and he’s all, “I don’t like patty melts.” Yeah, okay, but I’ve seen you rooting through the garbage in the alleys for a snack, so where do you come off being so God damned picky?

I’m speaking of him in the past tense because I don’t know what happened to him. A couple months ago he disappeared. If winter were approaching I would say he went south like a bird, but summer is coming. Summer in Chicago is beautiful, even if you’re a bum, hell, especially if you’re a bum. Well, whether Jesus is dead, relocated, or whatever, he’s more than a bum. I’m not sure what else he’s about, but I know he was a human being and a fixture of our neighborhood for who knows how long. Jesus, wherever you are, may you never sleep in the cold, may you forever have a dollar in your pocket, and may your sandwiches NEVER be patty melts.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Cucking Fubs!!

I know I’ve already written about the Cubs, but they’re fricking killing me. They are SO bad. When the highlight of the season is our catcher punching a White Sox player, that’s pretty bad. Actually, even if we were winning games that would STILL be the highlight of the season. Man, that was sweet.

Well, I’ve put on my dorky Cubs bracelet that says “believe” on it, and I plan on sleeping and showering in it, etc, until something changes since, quite obviously, their success depends on ME. If this doesn’t work I may have to sacrifice a live, virgin goat to eradicate the curse of the goat once and for all. Even if it doesn’t work, a goat killing party is always a good time. I wonder how my landlord will feel about a pentagram on the kitchen tiles? Fuck it. Take it out my security deposit, because the Cubs are counting on ME!

Monday, May 22, 2006

Fuck Dionne Warwick. THAT'S What Friends Are For

I don’t remember why, but on the drive to work today a line from a rap song popped in my head. I believe the song was Natural Born Killers (or maybe Killaz) by Dr. Dre and Ice Cube, and the line is as follows: “I’m down with Dre like A.C.’s down with O.J.” This is, of course, a reference to O.J. Simpson (Heisman Trophy winner, 2000 yard NFL rusher, and double murderer) and his childhood friend A.C. Cowlings. If you think about it, A.C. is one hell of a friend. You figure their conversation had to have been something like this:

OJ: I need a favor.
AC: Name it.
OJ: I need you to drive me in your car
AC: Can’t we use your Benz?
OJ: Nope. It has to be a white Ford Bronco. Can you do it?
AC: You mean a getaway?!
OJ: Not exactly. More like driving 25 on highway with 42 police cars behind us.
AC: Sounds fun, but . . .
OJ: Oh yeah, I’m going to need to hold a gun to your head the whole time
AC: Ummmmm
OJ: Oh, come on, man! I’d do the same for you. Come on . . .(look at the solo OJ picture when you read this line. He’s damn convincing, isn’t he?)
AC: Alright, Juice. But I’ll be expecting a sixer for this. . .

So, are you down for your friends or are you AC-style down for your friends? If your friend stabbed his ex-wife and her lover 12 times each, would you drive him/her on a Live CNN cop parade at gunpoint? Think about it . . .

P.S.: Can anyone tell me what movie the sixer line is from?

Thursday, May 18, 2006


I saw Pearl Jam at The United Center, where the Chicago Bulls play, the other night. I decided to go for a few reasons.

1. Heterosexual Life Partner, my roommate and one of my closest friends, is probably the biggest PJ fan on earth. He has a bunch of bootlegs and he has been to a ton of shows. You know how I know he is a big fan? At one point in the show he told me how one of the guitar players has Chrone’s Disease, like my other closest friend, and he is a big activist. Sure enough, I saw a guy on the way out with a Chrone’s foundation something-or-other shirt on. Who knows that about a band member? He is like one of those little girls that memorizes all of the N’Sync members’ favorite colors, and I love him for it. So, I had to see what they are all about live if Neil is this retarded over them and we tend to agree on music to the point where we are like a dorky couple of fruity asses.

2. They are a band that speaks to my generation. I went to school during the Grunge Era. For those of you who don’t know, that is when a shit load of bands from Seattle came onto the scene, and all of the hair metal bands had to take off their makeup, cut their hair, and get jobs at Wallmart. Look for Ricky Rocket from Poison at your local Dairy Queen. He makes a mean blizzard. The things that man can do with a heath bar . . . In any event, these grunge bands dominated the airwaves and MTV to the point where we all wanted to wear flannels and be depressed. This was fun for a while, but now I see how high school girls dress and all I can think is, damn, chicks in my day wore baggy flannels, didn’t fix their hair or makeup, and it was like making out with Bob Villa. Sorry, Bob. I’m sure you’re a stallion.

Okay, back to the speaking to the generation. I have to be honest here. I love Nirvana. They changed music forever, but I rarely knew what the hell he was talking about. While Kurt Cobain was singing about mulattos and albinos, Eddy Vedder sang, “While you were sitting home alone at age 13, your real daddy was dying. Sorry you didn’t see him, but I’m glad we talked.”* Nothing like that ever happened to me, but his words in that song and others gave me the chills and they still do. Let’s put it this way, how many parties do you remember a bunch of drunk people singing Nirvana to each other at the top of their lungs? There’s something about Pearl Jam that just transports me back to high school, and I’m sure there is one band that does that for everyone much more than other bands. What’s yours? High school wasn’t a good time for me, but PJ evokes the few good feelings I had about it.

3. My Morning Jacket opened. They are an unbelievable band. Neil and I were very dismayed to see that everyone was sitting down during their set. Because we didn’t want to be the lone tools standing up getting in people’s way, we decided to stand up and cheer like maniacs in between each song, and dance, air drum, and basically rock out as best we could in our seats during the songs.

Some highlights to the show included

Eddy Vedder’s voice sounded great, he is still a cool, rock star at age 40, and he avoided political rants. I will say it is weird that he has graduated to wine during his shows, but since he’s 40 years young, and since he put down 2 or 3 bottles, I have to let him slide on that one. a) Granted, he wasn’t the man possessed, frothing about the mouth, entirely too good looking to be homeless man, but I’ll be damned if he doen’t seem like one, crazed rocker, icon that he was close to 15 years ago, but he is still one helluva rockstar. I’ve always contented that his work on the album 10 is one of the best rock vocal performances of all time. Just listen to him going bonkers at the end of Jeremy. It’s like some demon-rocker spirit is channeling through him to do his rock bidding. He really was a man possessed on that record.
b) They played every PJ song I needed to hear. You name it, they played it.
c) The United Center had 312, a great new Chicago beer, on tap. Sure they were $7.50 a pop, but they were so damned tasty. When you only have four bullet points about a show, and one of them is about beer, you may have a problem, but that’s a whole other self-reflective blog that I don’t have time for.
d) There were 2 goofy drunk guys arm-in-arm jumping in unison throughout entire songs. I was calling them the Wonder Twins. There was a grey haired dude, there were a number of those, right next to them consistently getting bumped into by with their Wonder Twin Powers.

Okay, this turned into a much more in-depth analysis than I intended, but would you expect anything less? Enjoy your weekend everyone, and keep on rocking in the relatively free world.

* Sorry if I blew that quote, but I’m far too lazy to look up the verbatim version.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Tall, Dark, and Useful?

I’m dating this girl who makes me feel useful. She is a beautiful, intelligent woman who was born in Hong Kong and moved here in 1997. For starters, she missed the 1980’s! I have so much to teach her about tight-rolled jeans, jelly shoes, The Superbowl Shuffle, Bananarama, and Kajagoogoo. The following are some slightly more important things I’ve helped her with, taught her, or plan on teaching her:

1. Because she doesn’t have a car, nor does she know how to drive, I convinced her to buy a bike. I know a lot about them, so I was able to accompany her to the bike shop, which helped her, but annoyed the salesperson, who I foiled in her attempt to push everything in the store on her. “How about a light? A bell? A bolt to keep your seat on? A $60 lock? How about surface to air missles?”

2. I plan on teaching her to drive. I think I’d be good at this job, since I’m so patient. For the time being, I feel useful in that I can drive her places, since I have a car and know how to drive it.

3. Today I helped her pick out a handbag. She was all set to buy a $700 one, when I suggested we go to Bucktown and look in a shop that just sells bags, a shop I got the name of from a friend, since I knew they would be of good quality, potentially less expensive, and more unique. She liked a couple, but I could tell she wasn’t nuts about either of them, so I suggested we go down the street to a store called Stitch, which specializes in leather products. Sure enough, she fell in love with a bag, and I like it too. It’s somehow sexy, because it almost looks like a leather skirt. It’s interesting, but not gaudy. Maybe she can return the favor by decreasing my talk of handbags, and increasing my talk about sports, thus making me far less flaming. Until the Cubs give me something to talk about that doesn’t make my blood boil, I will continue to talk of fierce (with a lisp) handbags.

4. I plan on teaching her how to play volleyball. She will be worthy of being my double’s partner by the end of the summer. I’ll whip balls in her face, see previous post, if that’s what it takes.

5. Perhaps most importantly, I am making her watch all the original Star Wars films. We just finished Empire, and she had NO idea Darth Vader was Luke’s father. I must give her props, since after watching Darth use the dark side of the force to choke the 2nd or 3rd general, she wondered why anyone would want to be promoted, thus having to work more closely with the boss who gets frustrated and kills muthafuckas. A valid point, and an interesting notion I had not previously entertained. I know the picture is of him choking a GOOD guy by HAND, but I couldn't find any of him using the force to do it, and let's face it, pictures of him simply pointing his fingers aren't as menacing. Very nerdy of me to clarify that, but If you want to see some REAL Star Wars nerds, check these guys out: http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=672422470842718521

I would be remiss if I did not add that she is a rad chick in ways other than I can teach her things. In fact, there are a lot of things she has taught me in the short time I’ve known her. Okay, I’m going to get some sleep so I can be “usefull” at work tomorrow.

Friday, May 05, 2006

I am flabbergasted. As some of you know, I coach 6th and 7th grade volleyball. My principal just came up to me in the middle of practice, mad as hell, asking me if I whipped a volleyball at a kid’s face. What DID happen was two kids got mad at each other when they were chasing down their volleyballs, and one threw the ball at the other one’s face. I asked them what the heck was going on, they verified that they were throwing balls at one another, so I made them do laps. The one kid stopped, so, naturally, I asked him why he stopped, to which he replied he had to go. So, I said, finish your laps and THEN go. About 20 minutes later is when my principal came to me saying that this kid told his mother that I whipped a ball in his face and threw him out of practice. I love working with kids, it’s why I got into the business of school social work, but I’m so fed up with dealing with parents, politics, misunderstandings, and outright lies. I think I’m going to be a house painter. I want to just paint houses with some music on and have ZERO coworkers. Wouldn’t that be great?