September 2004 Archives

Sep 23 20:42:00 2004

If i had a sense of humor this would be funny

I don't think i've been to a laundromat since before i left Austin in 1995. In fact, it may very well have been this one, here on 43rd st & Duval. Probably about 1994? Right about this time of year, even. Kind of an anniversary, i suppose. My previous routine was to go and get a quart Newkie Brown from the Pronto mart across the way (where the self-immolating journalist from Waking Life fills up his gas can). It seemed to make the waiting go faster while the machines worked. Now... well, now i "own" a house without washer dryer connections and do not own a washer and dryer, so i'll just have to wait a bit before i can set that up. Over the last six or seven weeks [info]anassadeina has been above-and-beyond kind enough to donate the use of both her machines and more importantly her time to make this painless for me, but it really is just above and beyond. (And i [info]myzkyti has also paid for half of that water and electricity so i really ought to buy dinner for both of them. :) But anyway, i have four machines sloshing away in parallel here at the laundromat, which is better than beating my wet clothes on a rock by thhe side of the Colorado river. Even if the cost of sloshing has gone up a bit ($1.25 / load) from what i remember ($.75) from 1994. And there's that re-learning curve. I forgot to bring the detergent with, so i got some at the FreshPlus grocery across the street. Upon handing me my change, the cashier said, "Do you Yahoo!?" me: "uhhh... what?" her: "Do you Yahoo!?" me: "Like the Internet Service?" her: "Yeah." (less enthusiastically) "Like those commercials, you know, ' Do you YAHOOOOOOOOOO!?!?!?'" me: "Oh, yeah, i guess i saw one of those.. uh like years ago. Are you asking me if i use the Internet?" her: "Umm, no, umm do you want a bag? I just said 'Do you Yahoo!?' because it seems more interesting than, 'Do you want a bag?'" me: "Ahhhh..." (recognition arriving that i have missed the joke, and seem to have as much ability to dynamically appreciate an odd situation as say.. the machines washing my clothes.) "Umm.. No, thank you." My grandmother (Dad's side) once said something that dogs me to this day: "Never lose your sense of humor." She wasn't an especially humorous person. But i don't think many persons would be especially light-hearted if they had this happen to them the first 35 years of their lives: 1) Just before the Japanese invaded the ountry of her birth, the family business was stolen by the Dutch government because her mother Haru Kuthe was born Yamashita Haru, and her father Johan Andries Kuthe was unable to prevent this, what with being dead and all. 2) Suffered through the Japanese occupation and abuse, because she was 1/2 dutch. (We'll just leave the description at that.) 3) Escaped from Indonesia to the Netherlands just before the revolution, only because an influential authority in the government granted her kids visas because mother Kuthe had saved his life during the war.

4) Discover the that the Dutch were still pretty pissed about getting kicked out of Indonesiaby people who looked remarkably like her, and didn't exactly welcome her and her children with open arms, despite the Dutch given, middle, and family names. (Of course, the NL economy was still in the toilet after WWII -- fertile ground for the "Don't need none of them furriners" mentality.

5) Immigrate to Morgan City, Louisiana via a "war refugee"visa.

Hmm.. So uh, little diversion there. Originally, i was wondering, where the hell did my sense of humor go? Well, i think my job has squashed it beyond recognition. It's hard to have anything but the most sardonic sense of humor when it's all to easy to visualize the thousands of people every day who must be cursing my hopefully unknown name because Great Big Piece of Shit courseware product hasn't scaled to meet the demands of the largest single campus in North America. (sigh). But enough whining. Life is actually pretty good. My laundry's done, and i got to sit here in my new-found free-time, drink a Leo's Crowbar, and mooch Quack's free Internet. Wasn't doing that 10 years ago. Hell, i didn't even own a portable computer 10 years ago.

Maybe my mantra should be "Never lose your sense of Weird."

Posted by johan | Permanent link

Sep 17 12:16:00 2004

a post rounding the circle with a point in the middle.

The lead sentence From A Washington Post story about the Suicide Car Bomber of the Day in Baghdad:
"They saw the vehicle first, a blue Malibu, rounding the circle with the golden statue of Iraqi poet Marouf Resafi standing majestically in the middle."
Did anyone else (particular you professional editor-types) read that and think the guy had a golden statue of a poet in the middle of the car, like on the hood or roof?
That'd be like 10,000 points for style, but -20,000 for blowing people up.

Posted by johan | Permanent link