Friday, May 19, 2006

Who's at fault?

So, I'm driving to a job today in my car and I'm sitting at a light waiting to make a left. It's all one way traffic for both streets in a relativley residential area (Bradley Blvd. & Wilson Lane for the locals). Traffic is constantly coming from the other direction so I'm just sitting there until there is a large gap between a car and a white van. At this moment, I decide I'm gonna make my turn and it also turns out that right at this point the light is turning yellow, so I need to get out of the intersection to begin with.

So, I start making the turn, at which time a pedestrian sees the light turning yelling and starts hauling ass to try and cross. He doesn't make it into the intersection, thankfully, because he sees me turning, but I was about a half a second from slamming on my brakes to prevent myself from hitting him if he had.

Meanwhile, the white van floored it to try and make the yellow light and barely missed hitting me even without me stopping for the pedestrian.

I successfully make the turn and no one is hurt or hit by anyone else, but then I start thinking that I was about one hair away from a serious accident...and I started wondering, "who would be at fault?"

I figured it would have to be the white van, since I was already in the intersection at the time and he was accelerating into a yellow light, rather than yielding (yeah, that's what it actually signals). But, maybe I would have been at fault since I was crossing the path of the white van. Or would it be the pedestrian for attempting to cross at an inappropriate time. Though there are no crossing signs at this intersection, it surely would have been red since the light was yellow.

Thankfully, I don't have to deal with knowing who truly is at fault, because that would have really put a damper into a perfectly good FRIDAY.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Would You Rather Be...

"An alcoholic or chubby?" (overweight, but not morbidly overweight)

I heard this one on the radio today and they were going to say what percentage of people chose one over the other, but I ended up getting out of the car before I heard the answer. I guessed that it would be like 70/30 in favor of the alcoholic (which is what I would choose), but what would you go with?

Both will kill you in the long term, but at least with the alcoholic, you can be physically active until your liver gives out. They both cost alot, what with the food and liquor bills, so that's sort of a wash. As far as the ladies go, Nicholas Cage was able to pull Elizabeth Shue in Leaving Las Vegas, so that gives hope for the alkie. Fatties have a bit more trouble, though Professor Clump did pull both Jada Pinkett and Janet Jackson in the Nutty Professors, so there's still a chance there.

Well, there's some pros and cons for each, but I'm still sticking with my gut (no pun intended) and going with the boozing over the feasting.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Happy Mother's Day

Alright, it's time I started posting regularly again, as I've really gotten away from this and I feel that the writing helps me to purge some of my day-to-day tension, much like masturbation. But, you really can't blame me for not writing. It's been a truly ridiculous bunch of weeks, including a one day road trip to Charlotte, a wedding weekend where I was one of the groomsmen (thank you for that honor, and Congratulations to Kelly and Scott), and most recently, the sudden firing of my girlfriend from her job the day before she took a week-long trip to Tucson, which is where she is now. And, of course there's the swimming pools.

So, with all of this drama and excitement in my life, what do I want to write about today: Mother's Day shopping...of course.

You see, with all of this drama and extensive hours of work, I haven't had any time to really think through what I was going to get for the person who brought me into this world, my mom. And that was my goal for today.

I work with my mom, so I see her on a daily basis and spend most of the day in our smelly warehouse with her, answering phones and mocking some of the retards that call in looking for pool work. On a completely unrelated note, a house in my neighborhood just went up for sale and the realtors name is Gay Ruth. Now back to the story at hand. As I was saying, though I spend all this time with my mother, unfortunately, I really have no idea what it is that she could possibly want for Mother's Day.

My dad pulled a swift one and beat us all to the chocolate covered strawberries gift, which he presented to her on Thursday. It was a deft move giving the gift on a weekday, in advance of actual Mother's Day, limiting the possibility my two brothers or I could steal this simple gift idea from him.

I think we've given her something from Bath & Body Works (the ultimate female cop out gift) at least twice a year between Mother's Day, her birthday and Christmas, so there goes a second option. With those two options off the board, it's off to the mall for some brainstorming.

I jumped into the car and headed over to Montgomery Mall, forgetting that it was Saturday and 12:30 PM until the moment I hit the parking lots. Sweet fucking Christ! After years of working at the mall through high school, I seemed to have forgotten how miserable a place it is on Saturday afternoons. As I ventured into the mall, alone, I was confronted with mobs of women and teenagers swarming in all directions...none of them speaking a word of English (God Bless America). I wandered up and down each of the wings of the mall, only to come to the realization that the only stores in the mall are shoe stores and clothing stores for sluts that have the bodies of 12 year old boys. If any one of you sons of bitches even makes a comment...

So, that was a wasted trip. And then it hit me. I had overlooked the most obvious of all cop out gifts. When in doubt, don't buy anything...let the person you're shopping for do that. Yep, the old gift certificate. Speaking of gift certificates, this brings me to a little theory that I have come up with, which has served me well when dealing with buying gifts for females, even mothers.

"Don't buy clothing for women." I guess it's less a theory and more the eleventh commandment, intended solely for men. You see, if you buy a woman clothing, you're going to get in trouble. Why? Real simple: If the clothes are too big, then you think that she's fat; If the clothes are too small, then she "is" too fat. Either way, you have an upset woman and nothing lingers longer than a woman upset over her weight. But J-Man, what if it fits perfectly? Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha. Put down the half empty bottle of Jack Daniel's, close the other open window on your computer (which is porn), take a shower, shave, and go get yourself a girlfriend, because you obviously have never had one.

But I digress. Like I said, the gift certificate was perfect. I pulled this one before a couple years ago with Legal's Seafood and Carabba's, and I'm not sure exactly where my mom shops for clothing, so this time I thought I'd try something a little different. After some thought, I drove up to Regal Cinemas in Germantown, and grabbed my mom a nice gift certificate for a couple trips to the movies. Yep, the movies.

Because nothing says, "Thank you for giving me life, nurturing me through my youth, putting up with my teenage angst, paying for most of college, and dealing with my cursing tirades each and every workday" like buttered popcorn and 2-hours of Tom Hanks.

Like you did any better.

Saturday, May 06, 2006

Getting Older

It's been a while since I've had any free time and therefore, it's been a while since I've had a chance to put up a blog entry...I'm sure you all have really missed it. The pool season is in full swing and with it comes the switch from 20-40 hr weeks to 70-80 hr weeks for the next two months or so. It's truly amazing how one week I'm off at 4 PM every day and the following Monday, I'm barely getting done at 8 PM. That's what it's like when you're in a seasonal business, so you just have to suck it up and adapt quickly because you only have 7 months to make a full year's worth of income.

Of course with the start of the season comes the start of new hiring and employee issues. You see, no salaried employee complains when they're taking home a check when they're working 20 hours a week...they only complain when they're taking home the same check and working three to four time longer. It seems like it's the same problems every year, just with different twists and reasons behind their desire to make more money. And yet, every year, it always seems new and concerning to me...I guess I haven't learned to be a cold, heartless employer yet. And perhaps a change is needed. A significant change in the way I handle my business...and my life.

For the past seven years since I've graduated from college, my life almost feels like I'm running on autopilot. Sure, I make a big decision here and there, such as buying and selling my houses, and eventually splitting ways with my old work associates two years ago, but for the most part, it feels like I'm just going through the motions and life is happening around me. Maybe that's how it is for everyone? At some point, you chose your profession, you chose your partner, you chose your lifestyle, and now you just react with the situation and complete each day, only to repeat the process the following day, and week, and month, and year.

And now I'm 28 years old, living in a house in Rockville with my girlfriend, dog and cat, working feverishly in the Summer and relaxing in the Winter, grabbing a beer or five with my friends on the weekend, playing football every Friday and Sunday, eating sushi once a week at the Sushi buffet, reading sports columns in anticipation of the baseball and football seasons, and watching my hair get thinner and my muscles ache more after each exersion.

Is this what getting older is all about? Adding more and more routines and set pieces to your life until you have every day completely consumed with set plans or commitments, only to complete them and move on to the next day of the same? Is this what hippies are fighting (are they still fighting?) against? Is this what it means to be a part of "corporate America"? Is this when I realize that my life is not like a video game and I can't just re-load from my last save point and try a different path? Will Katherine McPhee win American Idol and become Kelly Clarkson, Part Duex? Could I have thought of a more depressing first entry after two weeks of not writing?

Hey, you're getting older too.