Thought I was gonna swing five updates this week, but it got late and I'm about
outta steam. Also, ELLEgirlbuddy is coming over. I promised I'd buy
her wine coolers.
I'll be back on
Monday with something fun, though. Seeya!
- Bad Bean
First off, take a
look at this here link:
You may have seen
it before, but I hadn't. It shows various spider webs, spun by various
spiders under the influence of various drugs. Results vary. Still,
they're all pretty alarming, when compared with a non drug-addled spider's web,
which is shown at the bottom. But the most alarming of all is the web spun
by the spider dosed with a belt of good old caffeine (the 4th web shown).
Now, caffeine is
my friend. And here we see caffeine completely and utterly fucking up a
spider. The effect is brutal and impossible to deny. I mean, hell,
look at that web! I could spin a better web using just my ass and fifty
feet of packing tape.
Actually, hang on a sec...
Okay, I was
wrong. And I'm in a lot of pain.
I've known coffee
for a long time. Soda, even longer. Chocolate, longer still.
For my entire LIFE, caffeine has been there, guiding, supporting, helping.
Hell, caffeine has been a parent, a friend, a motivator, and yes, even a
lover. (I had a weird evening once with a Toblerone bar, okay?)
Caffeine never got
jealous, not even when I made other friends, like nicotine. In fact, they
got along great! There has never been anything like a cup of coffee and a
cigarette, and there never, ever will be.
Alcohol and I have
become an inseparable duo as well, and although caffeine generally doesn't hang
around when I party with booze (except for that night with the Toblerone bar),
caffeine is always there for me in the morning. It never asks where I was
or what I was doing, it simply gives me an understanding look, pats me on the
shoulder, and alleviates my headache by reducing bloodflow through the dilated
blood vessels in my temples with its vasoconstrictor action.
As far as my
career goes, coffee has been there every single morning. I can't work
without it; it's like my very own personal assistant. A personal assistant
I imbibe and digest. In the evenings, caffeine helps me stay awake long
enough to work on this site. On the weekends we read books together, share
doughnuts, watch movies. We tried to ride a bike together once, but it
just didn't work out.
You know that poem
about footprints? Where the guy is on a beach, looking back at his life
and the footprints in the sand, and he's talking to... I can't remember who,
maybe Jesus or Buddha or Jamie Farr or someone? And he sees that during
the hardest times in his his life, there's only one set of footprints? And
the guy says "Hey, what up wit dat?" And whoever it is says
"That, my son, is when I ran to get a double espresso."
caffeine has been to me. And, I guess... I guess I just don't know what to
think after seeing this spider web thing. As a matter of fact, I was
raising a cup of coffee to my lips when I came upon those images. And
there it was. Proof that caffeine is not the friend I thought it was, not
the benign, gentle being that has gotten me through so many days and nights and
weekends, but instead, some sort of arachnid-corrupting DEMON BEAN.
Where do we go
from here? Caffeine is in the kitchen right now, sitting there, in the
fridge, wondering why I haven't been in to say hello. Do I pretend I never
saw those pictures? Can I go on as if nothing happened? If caffeine
finds out what I know, will it do to me the same thing it did to that poor
Or... what if...
what if it already has? Does the spider who spun that web know what
a pathetic and crappy web it is? Or does it look pretty much okay through
the cloud of caffeine? What if... what if I AM that spider? I mean,
jeez, I'm 29 years old and I'm a temp, for crying out loud. I have a junky
apartment and no money and no career... has caffeine been doing this to me all
along? Twisting me like it twisted the gossamer strands of that web?
Here I am, a bright, capable, creative, and incredibly drop-dead sexy guy...
man, am I ever sexy... so, shouldn't I be successful by now?
There seems to be
only one logical thing to do. Caffeine has betrayed me. Hidden
things from me. Lied. Possibly, just possibly, destroyed my
life. Maybe I was innocent, maybe I was asking for it, but my course seems
clear. I need to pick up an LSD habit. Pronto. LSD's web
doesn't look half-bad.
think it's time we had a little talk.
- Temp Chat... Sorta
Over the weekend,
I saw a link on the bestest weblog of them all, metafilter,
about some new AIM bots. AIM (AOL Instant Messenger) bots are programs, I guess,
that you can add to your "buddy" list. If you chat to these
bots, they will talk back and provide you with information. Each bot has
its own specialty: one can give you information about eBay, one will give
you the latest gossip about Hollywood, one will dish the skinny on business and
finance, and so on. There's even a bot just for talking about Lord of
Then there's ELLEgirlBuddy.
EGB, as I've come to call her, is a female teen bot (see picture, top left) who
can give you fashion and beauty tips. Well, I decided to talk to her and
see: a) just how realistic the chat experience was with the bot's artificial
intelligence, and b) if she happened to know anything about temping.
Ya with me on
Go Read Temp Chat 10!
- Course of Action
The work e-mail
a check request to James to replenish these checks so James can deposit the
replenishment check to your account. You can fax the check request and the petty
cash reconciliation sheet to him and James can just attach the checks you faxed
The questions I
check request? And for whom? And for how much?
James? Who is James?
checks? For what?
5) Who is
6) What replenishment
check, and for what, and for whom?
7) And for
what check request?
what? Cash what? Reconciliwhat?
10) To whom?
14) Why and
The reply I
The action I
weekends, I'll actually wake up before 2pm and get myself a decent
breakfast. I don't mean "decent" as far as nutrition goes, I
mean decent as "something better than cold pizza."
Usually, I'll hit
a place a few blocks from me called "Happy
Wonder Burger Coffee Shop",
which is your basic greasy spoon: blank white walls, crappy chairs and cheap tablecloths, etc. It's run by a
pleasant but tired-looking old Asian couple, and its menu features items like:
Scrambles Make With Cheese: $2.50
Bacons OR Sausage AND 4 Toast Piece: $3.99
Re-Fill, OJ Juice, Milks: .99
eaten at places like that. Anyway, it's good for a hot, fast,
artery-hardening yet tasty breakfast, and it's generally not crowded.
however, I got up early, and headed over to Happy Wonder Burger Coffee Shop
and found, to my surprise, that the sign no longer said Happy Wonder Burger
Coffee Shop. Instead, it said:
Fusion? What the hell? Had Happy Wonder Burger gone yuppie?
It wouldn't be too
surprising. A few years ago, there were plans in my quaint little town to
wipe out a couple blocks worth of retail shops and small restaurants, and put in
places like Pottery Barn, Gap, and a multiplex. I wasn't sure how I felt
about this; I mean, I'd love to have a movie theater nearby (there are two, but
neither of them are operating), but I do like the quaint nature of the town, and
the parking is already bad enough as it is. Plus, this was all slated to
happen about a block away from my apartment, so I'd have to live with the daily construction
racket. In any case, the plans were vetoed by the city council or zoning board or whoever votes on these kinds of things.
Fusion? Were corporate interests making another attempt to infiltrate the
town? Subversively this time, whacking out the Wonder Happy Burger Coffee
Shops and their ilk, one by one, sapping them on the back of the head and
dragging them off into the alley? Was Café Fusion a spore of the
conglomerate, wafting gently and innocently in, nonchalantly finding purchase,
and sitting there unnoticed for a while, before sinking its roots in,
multiplying, and finally spreading like a black merciless unholy yet extremely
fashionable cancer across my town?
Well, who gives a
shit? I needed some French Toast, stat.
I went into Café
Fusion, and found the same blank walls. The same crappy chairs and cheap
tablecloths. The menu had the same sort of items:
makes with Ham OR Cheese AND Bacons: $3.99
difference? A slightly older tired-looking yet pleasant Asian couple was
running the place.
I guess they just
thought "Fusion" sounded good. And it does! I'm actually
thinking about making up some flyers for Café Fusion, hip, trendy-looking
flyers, and posting them all over the San Francisco Financial District.
There's a bench across the street, and it might be fun to sit out one morning
and see the BMW's and SUVs pull up, crammed with yuppies, and watch them go into
the place with their cellphones and laptops, expecting tofu and smoothies and
frappuccinos, and instead, getting a nice plateful of Eggs Ommlett makes with
Week on Not My Desk!