Tuesday, November 30, 2010

"Alright already we'll all float on"

A long time ago a very, very close friend who just happened to be a true real life Wiccan taught me a special kind of dream.  She taught me a way that after some practice, and some luck, I could trigger a state of transcendental dreaming. sort of an odd form of lucid dreaming.  I don't recall the exact steps I took to make it happen, but I believe it involved laying still on my back and falling asleep while paying close attention to my level of consciousness and attempting to maintain control of my thoughts.  It required a certain level of concentration and nerves.  I recall it only worked once for me.  Traditionally, what I was taught happens is you experience falling asleep and then a feeling of being lifted off your bed and if you're able to maintain control and concentrate on not freaking out over the fact that you were floating above yourself you'd be able to stay above yourself and not only see what was going on from above, but exert some control over what was going on.  It is supposed to be a way of learning what is going on deep in your subconscious while at the same time allowing you to work out any issues that might be lurking.

The one time I somewhat succeeded I only got a few seconds in.  I was able to completely relax myself and had a level of concentration while attempting to sleep that I have never obtained before.  At the start I was aware that I was sleeping and dreaming and was able to control what I saw, and suddenly I felt myself lifting off of the bed...and I'm not kidding.  I actually felt like something, I don't know what, was lifting me from underneath and bring me closer to the ceiling.  Obviously I was still in bed, and I didn't stay focused long enough to look down and see myself still in bed, but I felt as if I was four or five feet off the bed.  This was rather scary...just imagine it for yourself and you can probably imagine how frightening it was.  I got nervous, lost concentration and focus, and immediately woke up.  I never got back to where I was, but it was certainly an interesting experience.

I bring this up because last night I was laying in bed for approximately two hours before I managed to fall asleep.  At some point I decided to will myself to lay perfectly still and concentrate on making myself fall asleep.  Any insomniacs in my readership have all gotten to this point, and also know how fruitless such as exercise can be.  Anyway, at some point I must have fallen asleep, or so I thought, because I did slip into a dream...except all the "dream" turned out to be was me lying in bed trying to fall asleep in a completely different room that I didn't recognize at all.  There was an air conditioning vent over my head and curtains flowing in the air from the AC, and a door all the way on the other side of a room that was made up of tile.  It was a rather drab and asylum looking room that actually frightened me.  When I sat up in my dream and looked around and didn't recognize where I was, I knew that I was dreaming.  In fact, my first thought was "I'm dreaming, this isn't actually where I am.  I am in my bedroom and I need to wake up"...and then I woke up.  It is strange when you are in a dream and know you are in a dream and even stranger when you can control some aspect of it.

Have any of you had the ability to tell yourself to wake up?  And if you did, did it work?  I'd love to hear strange dream stories.

Monday, November 29, 2010

It's a big building with patients, but that's not important right now...

I don't personally have much going on right now. So I'll discuss something in the news. One of the top ten funniest men to ever walk the earth passed away yesterday and it needs memorializing. I was taught about movies by my cousin. I spent every summer of my life in a campground in the Pennsylvania mountains where I spent my days swimming, softballing, X-men-ing, tennis-ing and my nights were spent watching horror movies (see Halloween 5, In the Mouth of Madness, and Army of Darkness), sci-fi movies (see Star Wars) and most importantly, old dry comedies. These were my favorites. The ones that immediately come to mind are Clue, Monty Python and the Holy Grail, and History of the World Part I. However, at the top of the list, my favorite comedy of all time, will sit Airplane!. It is simply the funniest movie I have ever seen. And the funniest parts of the funniest movie I have ever seen...almost uniformly belonged to the now late Leslie Nielsen. Sadly, the second funniest parts belonged to Peter Graves, who passed earlier this year.

Leslie also starred in the Naked Gun movies which were unbelievably hysterical in their own right. Perhaps you'll know them as those movies O.J. Simpson was in or as the movie version of his TV show Police Squad. Airplane! remains one of the two tests I have to determine whether I like a person's sense of humor. If they don't find the Airplane clip below funny, I don't want to be their friend (the other test is at the beginning of Monty Python and the Holy Grail where you hear the sounds of a horse approaching, except when it arrives its actually a guy banging two halves of a coconut together while skipping...I consider that the funniest moment in movie history).

I was really sad to hear Mr. Neilsen passed and wanted to at least mention it. And perhaps somebody who doesn't know about him, or Airplane! or the Naked Gun Movies (or any other movie I mentioned) will go out and see it...and that will make it worth it. He made some great movies and his dry, deadpan delivery in Airplane! is absolutely outstanding.

This is for you Leslie

His best Airplane scenes:

(There used to be a good video here, but it got taken down - go to youtube)

Friday, November 26, 2010

Tis The Season...Apparently.

Time to get in the Christmas spirit...sorry Jewish readers.  Someday I'll post pictures of 7 candles or chinese food.

Yes, the tree is up...as well as the stockings.  But infinitely more important...

The whiskey is in the nog...I repeat...the whiskey is in the nog.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thanksgiving. Part Deux.

Yeah, that last post was kinda depressing, I get it.  Nobody read...nobody.  So here is a humorous thanks and non-thanks list post.  I hope you find me funny...if you don't, go fuck yourself (also, there's a serious list below it)

Things I'm thankful for:
  1. Remotes have become longer but not wider in recent years.  It makes for excellent remote tossing and flipping while sitting on the couch.
  2. Twitter: now I have an entire new and acceptable source for pictures of cleavage.
  3. Scotch.
  4. My blackberry:  How else would I be able to look at miniature porn and sext 17 year olds while on the train going back and forth between the free clinic.
  5. The word spatula - say it...it's just a great word.
  6. Jennifer Anniston's nipples.  I feel closer to them than my own mother.
  7. I'm so jacked and tan.
  8. They demolished the Spectrum in Philly the other day.  Seriously, fuck Philadelphia.
  9. I don't live in Philadelphia.
  10. That scene that is separate from the movie Darjeeling Limited but is still somehow part of the movie where Natalie Portman is completely naked except for her socks.  That was awesome.
  11. The 1MX Express fitted button down.  That's just a nice shirt.
  12. Women willing to cheat.
  13. The way former Cincinatti Reds great Reggie Sanders looks in a baseball uniform.  The man was made to wear tight pants.
  14. Scotch.
  15. The Jersey Shore.  It's better than beer at making me feel good about myself.
  16. The guy who invented "downward dog".  Thanks pal.
  17. Johnny Depp.  He's really cool.
  18. That despite being an out of shape boring white guy, I still look good naked.  What's that?  You don't believe me?  Then find out for yourself.  Please?
  19. Mani-Pedis.  What, some of us care...Wolverine.
  20. Lists.
  21. Getting a boner just before getting fondled by a TSA security person.  No reason I should be the only one uncomfortable.
  22. It's been so long since I've had sex that I am legally allowed to tell the next woman I sleep with that I'm a virgin.  She'll be amazed at how unbelievably adequate I am.
  23. Scotch.

Thinks I'm not thankful for:
  1. External genitalia.  Do you have any idea how many times I've sat on my own balls?
  2. Being straight.  It would just be fucking easier to be gay, I swear.  
  3. Being a white educated male.  Wait...wrong list.
  4. Movies starring former/current/future wrestlers.
  5. Women willing to cheat.
  6. The law.  I fucking hate the law now.
  7. I'm old enough now that a) my back hurts often, b) my hangovers last longer, c) I'm part of the unemployment rate.
  8. The pressure that comes with being better than others.  It's a lot to handle.
  9. My modest nature.
  10. The Irish curse.
  11. Vodka.  I believe if someone mixed a Peruvian hooker's work-sweat with lighter fluid...you'd get Vodka.
  12. The pharmacy won't accept the Vicodin prescriptions written on a post-it...by me.
  13. Any girl showing a pantie-line.  C'mon! It's 2010...what are you doing wearing underwear.


Things I'm thankful for:
  1. My brother, my sister-in-law, and my niece and the roof they've provided me.
  2. My friends, without whom the last six months would have killed me.
  3. The snow currently falling and the breath I can see in front of me.
  4. My relative youth.
Things I'm not thankful for:
  1. My absence in my city.
  2. The constant struggle.
  3. This empty spot in my heart that used to be full.

The holidays have always made me sad.  I guess I'm a seasonal depressive.  I don't know exactly why...perhaps it's because my family life has never been particularly strong.  I love spring and fall though.  I'll smile again then.  I promise to make a humorous thankful list later.

This year one person in particular is missing.  

You'll never read this.  But I miss you.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Rejected. Dejected.

This past Friday I had my first interview for a position as an attorney. It was with a small corporate/securities firm in Manhattan. And by small I mean it consists of the two named partners and three associates at all times. I say at all times because the associates working at the firm seem to be walking through a revolving door. Nobody stays there long and during the interview I just may have found out why.

I worked at this firm over the summer of 2009, so I knew what it was about. In fact, that's how I got the interview. I saw they were advertising on craigslist for an associate so I e-mailed the partner I worked under directly. He e-mailed me back and a week later a got a call asking me to come in for an interview.

The interview went very well up to a point. He was making clear that he wanted me to work there saying things like "we called you in here because we know you" and "Colin (the associate I worked with) had nothing but good things to say about you". I was happy it seemed the interview was a formality. However, the other shoe then hit me in the face. Towards the end he leaned forward and said "now I assume you've taken the bar and are awaiting the results". I haven't. I'm taking it in February...hopefully. I had to explain this to him. I offered the idea of working part-time for January and most of February because I need most all of those days for studying. He then went on to explain they are a small firm, with small business clients who aren't flush with money and thus it is hard to take on part-time attorneys even for a short time and because of the size of the firm they needed someone in the next few weeks. He didn't outright say I'm sorry that disqualifies you, but the way he said "I'll have to talk to my partner" said all that had to be said. Also, today they reposted their ad on craigslist...so I assume that means I didn't get the job.

It's disappointing. I didn't take the exam this past summer because of a complete misunderstanding and unfortunate circumstances...and now it has screwed me out of a job. Now, the job sucks. The reason his associates roll in and out of the firm is that they expect there associates to work 55 hours per week. He said typically everyone works 9 am to 9 pm. That's ridiculous but is justifiable should you be getting paid well. However, he admits the firm is well on the low end of pay scales...the salary rounds out to about 47k for the first year. That is absolutely absurd and is just an awful awful rate. But I am in no position to turn anything down. Plus I'd be getting a lot of good experience. I'd be writing stock purchase agreements, promissory notes, working on mergers and acquisitions, writing and editing contracts, working both transactions and litigation, as well as general corporate advice. Basically, I'd be learning by doing stuff that is really really boring and nobody wants to do...making me fairly marketable after a year. And I don't get to do it because I have to fucking take the bar this February. Unreal.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Absence...sweet sorrow...etc.

Sorry for my absence the past week. I left thursday afternoon for my triumphant return to New York City. I stayed the weekend because me and my friends were having our annual fall tradition known as Friendsgiving. Essentially, it is a pot-luck get together of everyone of our friends. We started this tradition in 2008 and have done it each year since. It has actually caught on quite a bit.  People actually think of it as an important tradition already. It's nice to keep up with these kinds of things as we get older. Each year there are more and more couples at events like this and sooner or later those couples will turn into marriages, and those marriage will then have children...which will limit our ability to do these kinds of things. We need to get them in while we can.

I take the bus down from PA on thursday afternoon and meet my buddy Chris with whom I was staying the first two nights with. We're driving around as he finishes up some work in the lower east side and I find a perfect example of why I love New York City and in particular the lower east side. While parked on the corner of 2nd avenue and 5th street, as Chris takes a phone call, I crack my window to get some air and notice a fella facing the wall. This is what makes NYC great...it's 4:30 in the afternoon, still pretty light out and he's just pissin on the side of a building (I think it was a restaurant) right there on the corner where everyone going in every direction can see him. He wasn't drunk and he wasn't homeless...he just didn't care...god bless him. This, however, wasn't the best part. As I'm watching from the car a young lady walked by via the sidewalk in between myself and the vigilante bar pisser. She, of course, takes notice that he's pissing on the wall and can't help but look. Now, the VBP might be willing to piss in public, and full well knows people will see him...but he doesn't want to be made to feel insecure about his corner-store urination. Still peen-in-hand he starts screaming at the girl "DON'T YOU WATCH ME PISS. WHA-CHOO LOOKIN AT!" Once done, he zipped up, and followed her around the corner to continue reminding her how out of line she was in looking at the guy pissing on the wall in the middle of the day in plain sight. God I love NYC.

Then on Friday there were two things on the agenda. I have an interview - a REAL LIFE LAWYER INTERVIEW - about which I will blog tomorrow. Second, we were having a cocktail party with all our friends. Sort of a pre-friendsgiving night out. Us fellas decided to suit up for the occasion. Let's just say the night began as an adult party with well dressed men, tasty hors d'oeuvres, and fine conversation. However, at some point things changed and it became a raucous drunken festival of sorts. I say "at some point" because I unfortunately blacked out. I was drinking Old Fashioned's the entire night, and was unable to turn down the sugary shots the ladies were doling out.  I am actually quite upset that I allowed myself to get that drunk...I had had a tough day...but I didn't want that to happen. While I was told I held myself together and behaved, it is still embarrassing and I don't want it to happen again. I'm not fucking 22 years old anymore.

My Yams are top left
Anyway, so the next day is Friendsgiving. I wake up after four hours sleep and can't walk or move my head without feeling nauseous. So, when we arrive at the house we were eating in, I took a three hour nap. I felt better when I awoke and went on cooking my candied yams. 8 yams boiled for 40 minutes, mashed, combined with 4 tsp of butter, 1/3 a cup of high fructose corn syrup, 1/4 a cup of maple syrup, 1/4 a cup of brown sugar... topped with a bag of small marshmallows and baked for 40 minutes. Didn't turn out too bad. Nothing spectacular, but a good interpretation of a thanksgiving classic. The food was good. Only a couple of us really know how to cook, but somehow each friendsgiving we pull it together and each make one good dish.

Next I moved on to Daves where I spent Saturday and Sunday night. We went out to a place called Libation on Saturday to meet up with an old family friend of Daves who is clearly and completely in love with him. I was told, by her, how they were best friends in the whole world at minimum 317 times (comedy rule number 1: prime numbers are funny). Despite this she was a really nice girl and it was entertaining hanging out with her. After taking the out-of-the-way route of cabbing her home from the nexis of the universe aka 1st and 1st, all the way up to 91st street, we found ourselves at the McDonalds in Murray Hill (mid-thirties and 3rd ave for my out-of-towners) for a late night snack. We should have been there all night. I've never seen so many beautiful and friendly girls in a fast food restaurant. And it wasn't as if all 12 of them came together and that is easily explainable. There were about 3 different groups of entirely way too attractive for McDonalds at three in the morning...girls. And they were friendly, and witty...and one was slightly racist (see this tweet). It was odd.

So that was my weekend. I'm sad it is over and I won't see my friends or my city for several more weeks...probably around New Years. I'll talk about my interview tomorrow.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

It's a conspiracy I tells ya!

I'm convinced the world is trying to make my head spin right off and launch into the stratosphere.  Those who know me, and those who've been reading here, know I've been goin through some shit getting over a breakup.  That's all well and good and I'll deal with it.  However, the world doesn't have to keep throwing fucking curve balls, and screwballs, and knuckle balls at me to try to knock me out of the game.

The other day I was out eating dinner with the fam and apparently I left my facebook page open on my laptop when I walked away from it.  When I came back there was one of those facebook g-chat style instant messages in the bottom right hand corner.  Normally it is one of my bar tending buddies informing every one of their facebook friends of some special promotion or event they are hosting...of which I generally ignore.  However, this time...it was quite the shock.  This time...it was college girlfriend.  Since law school girlfriend is known as Aphrodite on the Tree, I'll give college girlfriend a name...let's call her "Grace".  I have not spoken to Grace since late in 2005 when we officially went our separate ways after a year long, post breakup, on again-off again, confusion-fest.  Part of the shock is Grace got married this past May (to the dude immediately following me, something I've discovered is happening often).  The fact is I was happy to hear from her.  I hate to lose people from my life, particularly people who played an important role.  We eventually ended up having a nice conversation, catching up a bit on how married life is for her and how law school and real life is treating me.  I didn't get to say something I wanted to though.  Namely, I wanted to thank her for not disappearing immediately after our break-up, something who's value has only showed itself to me after Aphrodite failed to do so.

But that is besides the point.  The point is: WHY THE FUCK IS THE WORLD TRYING TO MAKE ME GO CRAZY!?!  Yes, I wanted to speak with Grace eventually and likely would have when the time was right, I wasn't so fucked up, and perhaps she had a year or so of marriage under her belt.  So why now?  Why did the world see fit to have her get slightly buzzed and see me on facebook and feel the desire to reach out.  I'm at my most fucking confused, most psychologically fragile, and most likely to dive head first into full on alcoholism.  Actually, that doesn't sound so bad right about now.  OK, I'm not actually angry...just amazed and I felt like cursing a lot.  It was nice to find out Grace still thinks I'm a good human being and it was good to find out she is doing well.  A lesser person might have been thrown for a loop...I won't be.  I'm just shocked the world is taking these shots.  It's gonna have to do better than that to sink me.  But god damn.

Monday, November 15, 2010

A week in my Dreamscape...

Last week I decided to see if I could remember and try to analyze my dreams.  So each day when I woke up I opened up this post and added what I could remember from that nights dreams.  Often I couldn't remember much.  A couple of times it was pretty vivid.  I did not leave anything out that I could remember.  I thought about the idea of doing this every week...but it is just too damn difficult trying to remember your dreams.  I suggest giving it a try yourself to see if you can.  I was surprised at how difficult it was to remember, and when you did, how little you could recall.

Today - waking up on Monday morning, the first part of the dream I recall was me, at the age I am now, apparently in college.  I was roommates with a person who I've been friends with since my senior year of college, but never lived with.  Also, the people with whom I interacted with were a group of people I know now who I did not know in college.  It was a lot of law school people who I did not know then.  It wasn't a particularly vivid dream so I don't have a great many details.  As with any guy, there was a female star of the dream.  The one in this dream was not someone I recognized.  This is how my dreams seem to work.  The female I conjur is not someone I know if I'm "meeting" someone in the dream.  Sometimes I dream about the past, and of course then Aphrodite is there, but whenever I meet someone who's "new", it's a person who isn't recognizable at all.  In fact, I couldn't even describe her face for you because I'm not certain she had a face...that's how vague these people always appear in my dreams.  Anyway, all I know is in the dream I woke up one day quite hungover and then tried to exit the dorm building only to find strange circumstances outside such as a cold beach or a weird sidewalk (side note: I've recently watched both Inception (weird sidewalk) and Eternal Sunshines of the Spotless Mind (cold beach)).

The next part of the dream is a bit more vivid, though less meaningful in a way.  I was at a Casino.  This dream seemed odd because I was seeing it as if it was a first person shooter video game (think World of WarCraft or Call of Duty)...meaning I saw what was the view from my eyes and I could see my hands doing stuff in front of me, etc.  I wasn't seeing myself from above or from differing views.  I'm not sure if this is normal.  I'll try to track it in the rest of the week's dreams and see if this occurs regularly.  Anyway, once in the Casino I was apparently in full "guy casino" mode, so I was just walking around looking for an attractive girl to hit on when I stumbled upon a wedding.  I sat down at the wedding reception, which turned out to be a very snooty, rich person, Yale type wedding.  The groom or "bridegroom" as he was referred to brought out a basketball hoop (yeah, yeah, weird, but it's a dream, it could have been anything) because he was discussing memories with his best men with whom he used to play ball with and wanted to see if he could still dunk.  I then yelled a comment point out that not many guys who can dunk have tits that big....and then left.  I found the next sequence interesting.  When I left this room where the reception was I took exactly the opposite turns I did getting to the room and saw all the same people and things.  What I mean is, my mind apparently kept track of earlier in my dream when for example I may have walked through the casino first making two lefts, then three rights and two lefts....and then did the exact opposite to get me out of there.  Creepy.    And that's all I have for Sunday night.

I don't know exactly what any of it means.  I love gambling and am currently mad at rich, snootie people so I suppose that makes sense.  I also have a very unstable living situation so having new roommates or an odd place to live makes sense too.  I suppose my mind is trying to work out my fears with regard to my future housing.

Today - waking up on Tuesday morning I have very, very vague memories of one dream and a slightly more vivid memory of the later dream.  The first dream is about a very typical area of my dreamscape...baseball.  I played baseball throughout my whole life....from as soon as I could walk until I was twenty years old I played baseball five to six months out of every year.  It was a huge part of my life.  This dream had me at the age I am now playing on the field I played on in Little League.  The field was regulation size...meaning while the setting was my little league, the field was as big as a real field, not small like a little league field.  Also proof that it was a little league setting, I was playing short-stop, a position I never played after little league, when I became a second basemen and eventually a pitcher.  This is the dream I don't have a very good memory off.  I recall a tag play at second base where the runner slid into second and stopped about half a foot shy of the base and popped up as I tagged him.  The ump, thinking he popped up at the base, called him safe.  I argued vehemently, the umpires gathered, and called him out.  The next memory I have is of my two at-bats.  I hit two bullet line drives to center-field for two hits.  I also do that in my dreams.  The line drives were hit very hard but never became a HR because I didn't get under it enough, or for lack of a better term "just missed".  I played organized baseball for 16 years and never hit a homerun...one of the more disappointing facts of my childhood...my dreams often display that.  The funny part is, the pitcher for those at bats was MSNBC's Keith Olbermann and he smiled when I got the hits off of him.  Keith is in the news lately, so that is probably why he was in my dream.  However, he was one of my favorite Sportscenter anchors growing up.  That likely lent itself to him being in my sports dream.

The second dream was more personal.  It dealt with two aspects of my life: my being broke right now and my issues with my father.  It all began in my childhood home, specifically my brothers bedroom, which later on in life became my bedroom.  Apparently in the dream, my mother broke my backpack, to which I demanded she replace or give me the money that would pay for it.  Next, my bank account was broken into and almost all of my money was gone, leaving me unable to buy anything I needed.  This led to an outpouring of support from friends (none of whom I recognized).  In a fancy jump that only happens in dreams, I ended up in the campground where my family used to spend the summer cleaning up my father's place because he wasn't keeping it clean, which annoyed me.  Later on he kept pestering me about jobs and money and kept saying insanely stupid things about politics and science until I got unbelievably angry and screamed horrible things at him at the top of my lungs.  I won't get into what they were, but I was loud, I was horribly mean, and I would have hated myself if it happened in real life.

Also, I did not notice whether or not these dreams took place in first-person shooter mode like the previous days dream.  I will try to notice that tonight.  That is all for today.

Today - waking up on Wednesday morning, my dreams were less clear to me than at any point all week.  I recall waking up in the middle of the night, immediately thinking to myself what did I dream about...and having absolutely no memory of it.  When I woke up a bit later to begin my day, I had the same first thought...Ok what did I dream about?  At first I could not think of anything much like earlier.  However, I sat there for a minute and tried to remember and was able to put together a piece here or there.  Probably could have done that earlier....ahh well.

As for the bits of the dream I did remember.  It once again involved living situations, which is very much on my mind lately.  And once again it appears to put me in an academic living situation.  I did not recognize the building at all...however I did meet for what appeared to be a law school like class in a room in the penthouse of that building.  That may seem odd, but in college I was involved in a special program called the Renaissance Project where people were housed, in a tall building, with those who had the same major...we often had class in a room either on the floor above us or in the penthouse of the building.  The only other part of the dream I recall is the teacher was either British or Australian.

I am sorry I couldn't remember more of the dream scape today.  I do wish to  point out one thing that is kind of embarrassing but true.  I find myself surprised by the utter lack of sex in these dreams.  My male readers know what I'm talking about.  I'm not leaving it out...if it were there I would tell you.  It's just not there, which is very odd.  I don't know if I'm abnormal or not but I would estimate at least 1/3 of my dreams include sex in some way....it's just the way I roll.  That may seem perverted, but dreams are where we work out some of our inner-most desires/problems/fears - and let's face it, sex is part of some of all of our biggest desires/problems/fears.  So, great, now I'm also not getting any in my subconscious.

Today, on Thursday morning, I woke up and again had several dreams.  The first one was odd and touched on some personal subject.  I cannot explain how I got there (watch Inception and you'll see this is normal) but the first thing I recall is sitting on the edge of a pool with my feet in it talking to a fellow law student with whom I've spoken too once in my entire life.  She's a sweet girl and I'm sure perfectly nice, but I was speaking about very personal things with her without ever having had a real conversation with her before.  It's strange how those things happen in dreams.  My only exposure to this person is facebook updates.  I guess that's enough nowadays.  Anyway, she somehow mentioned cheating spouses in our conversations and I chuckled sarcastically.  At this point she asked if it was OK if we talked about "it".  I said go ahead, ask your questions.  She didn't ask about Aphrodite, but rather about whether or not I had hooked up since she left.  I said No...which is true...I have I believe kissed one girl since she left, but have not really hooked up.  I then jumped into the pool and continued swimming to avoid the rest of that conversations.  I suppose I was embarrassed in the dream, even though I don't believe it bothers me in real life.

The next thing I remember is being on a series of trains going across the country.  For some reason I remember crossing the border into Washington State - this makes about as much sense to me as it probably does to you.  Once I was where ever it was I was going, I found myself in what appeared to be an old west style saloon, meaning two floors with old-timey bannisters around the top floor, with people I did not know at all.  Also, we were all separated into groups based on our ethnic background.  I was of course, with the Irish.  We were on the first floor of the "saloon" and apparently someone we liked as well as someone we didn't like were on the second floor.  We noticed that there was a bit of a disagreement brewing between those we liked and those we didn't like, so we went up there to see what was going on.  Once on the second floor I found myself very aggravated by one of the people we didn't like and I went after them.  I don't fight in real life...in fact I've had one fight in my life (a year and a half ago, drunk at a bar), so my dreams appear to be where I get rid of these "animalistic" urges.  Thankfully, I won the fight.  I mean really dominated...which I suppose is a good sign for a persons confidence.  It's probably not healthy to lose a fight in ones own dream.  After this I recall going into yet another train station and waiting there with my former Torts professor, who is the scariest person in my law school, silently.  That is all I remember from that dream.  I have absolutely no idea what the trains mean.  It was a rather dark dream with grainy scenes and scary imagery.  Think of how movies like Trainspotting, or Snatch or Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels look...and then you'll understand how this dream was visually.

The second dream of the evening brought with it that sex, or at least sexual connotations, that was missing earlier.  It is odd that it happened where it did because this dream took place in my childhood summer vacation town.  I found myself walking down the curvy road just outside my summer campground, the one that is carved out of the woods and hills, with forest on both sides.  There was some sort of truck or cart going down the street with two beautiful women dressed in next to nothing sitting on it...don't ask me to explain that.  Naturally, I hopped on this truck with wonderful ideas in my head.  Unfortunately for my night, I wasn't able to bring any of those ideas to fruition.  This dream was not a really badly written adult film....it was a really badly written horror/rated R film.  The kind on Cinemax at 2am in October.  Once down the road a bit into the area with nothing on either side but trees really scary zombie-like people kept approaching us and...well...scaring the shit out of us.  It happened multiple times...sometimes it was a delivery man, sometimes a local hick, etc.  I don't know how it ended because I woke up rather suddenly from a scare.  I wonder if that counts as a nightmare?

Now, I spent the next two hours of my morning falling asleep and waking up, I believe, six different times.  I had several very small dreams.  One dream showed me the story of a southern trucker becoming successful, which is probably loosely based on the 30 for 30 documentary I watched the other day on ESPN where a former football player because a trucker.  That is all I can recall.

I did happen to notice that these dreams didn't entirely take place in first person shooter mode.  I was able to see myself as if from above in most of the dreams including the fight dream and the train station parts.  I think I was in first person shooter mode when I was talking to my law school friend.  So it seems whenever I have direct interaction with someone I go into first person shooter mode and when its sort of a transitional period of the dream I can see myself from above.  My dreams appear to be like a movie in that respect.  They zoom in when things need proper attention to detail and zoom out when the scenery is more important.

Today I woke up on Friday morning, and the dream that is most vivid for me is a rather short and pointless story.  I was at what I believe to be New Giants Stadium.  I say this because in my head I thought I was at a Giants game, plus I was actually there a few weeks ago.  The whole dream was strange because it merged the idea of a football game with the idea of an opening act at a concert.  It's worth noting my last concert, seen one year ago, was at the old Giants stadium.  There was apparently an opening game in this instance...but I hadn't realized it.  There was two teams playing, neither of which were the Giants, but in my dream I assumed one was the Giants because of the colors.  The "Giants" made a bad play, and I got up and booed obnoxiously loud.  What I didn't know up until this moment was that like most opening acts, nobody was in the stands yet.  So I booed loudly with a crowd a about fifty people.  This meant everyone could hear me and everyone turned and looked at me.  Then to make it even more exciting they played my "boo" on the jumbo-tron with sound and all.  I wasn't embarrased for some reason.  I have absolutely no idea what any of this means, it's just what happened.

I consider this experiment unsuccessful.  I don't  understand most of these dreams and they don't seem to work anything out.  If any of you have any theories I've be very happy to hear about them in the comments.  Also, I was disappointed with my ability to remember the dreams.  I always thought I was better at that than it appears I am.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Not Your Grandfather's Children's Music...

Yup, Sarah Silverman
in a Children's Show
You'll have to excuse the corniness of the song below. I was watching the niece today when she wanted to play with her Yo Gabba Gabba toys...namely a guitar. If you don't know what that show is you must be a regular person. It is what is becoming the most popular children's show on Teevee...its guest stars have included Biz Markie, Anthony Bourdain, Elijah Wood, Tony Hawk, The Shins, Hot Hot Heat, Amar'e Stoudamire, The Roots, Rachel Dratch, Weird Al, Sarah Silverman, Weezer, and Mos Def. Anyway, she found it and pressed all the buttons and played this song 217 times in a row. Perhaps it's the fact that it was drilled into my head that much, or that I have absolutely nothing occupying my time of late...but I thought this was an awfully good song for a children's song. I don't recall music actually being this good technically when I was a child. It also struck me not only as having a wonderful melody, but as a song even an adult might need to hear every once and a while. I know I downloaded it and will give it a listen every so often, despite how corny and childish it is. Frankly, I can afford to feel childish (it also gave me an opportunity to attempt posting an mp3 file to a post, something I've been wanting to try). Be careful though, if you listen to it you will be singing it for at least an hour. I'm on two hours right now.

Thursday, November 11, 2010


This will be the second edition of Three-For-Thursday.  It is good because my creative juices are not flowing today...just a rough day.  However, look forward to a lengthy post in coming days analyzing all of my dreams of the past week.  I'm also considering making that another weekly post.

Anyway, last week I told you three songs I thought were worth listening too.  I don't want to make this post merely my personal pop-culture barometer.  So, to avoid this I will not do a television, bands, movies, etc...post this week.  Those will definitely happen...but not this time.  This time I will delve into my past, namely the cities in the world...large and small, that I have visited.  Here are three places I think every person should visit once in their life:

In a particular order:

Caherciveen, Ireland
3) Caherciveen, Ireland - Me, my older brother and older cousin once flew to Ireland, rented a car and drove around for ten days.  We started in Shannon, drove south to the Ring of Kerry and whipped up the coast to end in Dublin.  Along the way we would stay in Bed & Breakfasts.  One day we decided to stop in a small village called Caherciveen (pronounced "Key-herse-if-veen" we were told, say it fast).  We didn't know what was special until, and this is a true story, we checked into the B&B, settled in and I went to go sit down in the little boys room.  Before I...umm...began, I looked out the oddly gigantic window for a bathroom and soon realized why it was gigantic.  What I saw was one of the most beautiful views I had ever seen...ironically seen from the crapper.  The actual pictures I took (from the bathroom) are out in the shed and I'm not fetching them...but the picture here is from the same area where I was...except my view included a small sheep herding cottage in the picture.  It was truly remarkable.  Soon after that we went for a walk looking around, and it was just a stunning area.  Perhaps it is the Irish in me that drives me to love this kind of green, fertile scenery...but it was amazing.

Click the pics - they are Hi-Res
2) Innsbruck, Austria - The year following my trip to Ireland I went on a school trip to several countries in Europe.  Along the way we stopped for several hours in Innsbruck, Austria.  I have to say, no city I have ever visited has intrigued me as much as this city.  It was definitely odd...but in an interesting way, not an off-putting way.  There was strange art and medieval architecture.  The people were friendly and in a good mood, but oddly so...almost as if they were all slightly under the influence.  I absolutely loved how cozy the streets were. They were so narrow it made you feel safe like the buildings were blocking out everything bad in the world.  Innsbruck was also the home of the 1964 and 1976 Winter Olympics and I am an enormous fan of the Olympics in general and in particular the Winter Olympics.  It was really amazing to visit an Olympic site (I've also visited the Munich site - 1972 Winter Games) and I got to stand on the medal stand at the giant ski jump site.  I really hope at some point I can go back to Innsbruck and spend a couple of days in the city itself.  I would love to explore more.  The pubs and stores seemed amazing and the culture is beautiful.

1) Waterville, Ireland - This is the place I consider to be the single most beautiful, most amazing place I have ever seen/been too. It is also only about 10.5 miles south of Caherciveen. So really, just visit the Ring of Kerry in Ireland and you can't miss. This little town was the favorite vacation town of Charlie Chaplin...he even has a statute dedicated to him 100 yards from the water. It is a small fishing town that also has what is rated the 5th best golf course in the U.K. Golf fans know this is a big deal because the U.K. is where golf is invented and taken very seriously. This is another place I didn't get to spend a night, a decision we immediately regretted. The cliffs and the hills and the ocean and the mountains were astounding. It houses the greenest color green I have ever seen in my life.

I considered it a spiritually beautiful place. I always wanted to get married outside because I'm not religious and don't like churches. When we found Waterville I decided I wanted to get married there, but realized that is far too much to ask of my guests. So my plan was to get married, honeymoon in Ireland, and have my vows renewed on my honeymoon on a cliff in Waterville. I know, it's kinda sissy for a male to be thinking about these things, but, if you know me it makes sense.

If you are a person who loves views, and mountains and scenery this is the number one place I suggest for you. If you are not a beach person, this is the place to go (though Ireland does have palm trees...no kidding). I will go back here and stay in Waterville and once again say hello to Mr. Chaplin.

Here is Waterville:

That spot, the cliff in the background, that's the spot

A better view

Charlie Chaplin knew what he was doin

Monday, November 8, 2010

King-Kong Syndrome

My Niece, in full attack mode
For just about a little over a month I have been living in Easton, PA with my brother, his wife and his three year old daughter.  Over the summer, during a far more hectic and shall we say...difficult time, I spent three weeks here just to get out of New York City, which had become a mental nuisance for me.  I really enjoyed myself here.  I missed having a lawn, seeing trees, being in a living situation that had more than three rooms, and non-city life in general.  I grew up in Staten Island, NY (don't hold that against me), which while technically is part of the New York city, it is not part of the city (for my out-of-town readers, "the city" is really Manhattan in local speak).  This means there are actual houses with actual lawns and actual backyards, etc.  Moreover, each summer of my life I spent in the woods.  My family would leave for the Poconos the day after baseball ended and come back to the city the day before school started.  For these two to three months I was let loose in the woods.  Essentially, growing up I never really considered myself a "city person" per se.  Sure I had more New York City experience than most of the world, and my parents paid the same taxes as those people who lived in "the city"...but that place was for the rich...not for people like me.  I was a simpler person, who appreciated nature, a sunset, and walking barefoot in grass.

That Sunset - tonight
It never hit me, until now, just how much the city has become a part of me.  I love having things within walking distance.  I love that I can get anywhere no matter what at all times.  I can get anything I want at any time.  Walking around the city this past summer, I seriously doubted how I felt about the city because a lot of the places I would walk by brought up memories I did not want to remember (see this post) and some still do.  However, tonight, while sitting in my brothers den watching an orangey-pink sunset out over the backyard I realized just how much I actually miss being in the city.  People always say New York City has a particular energy you can't get anywhere else...I always dismissed this as some uptight New York grandstander trying to be overly poetic...but it's true.  I have never been to Chicago, or downtown L.A. or D.C. or any of the other great American cities...but I imagine it could be true of them as well.  Indeed, I have been to Munich, Venice, and Dublin (Dublin being the most similar to NYC) and while they were absolutely wonderful in their own ways, they did not give me the feeling that NYC gives me.....so I would need to feel it for myself to believe it is anywhere but NYC.  

I never saw myself as becoming one of those people, who lived in that city.  But I am.  I have to live in New York City, or at least right near it with access to it every day.  I truly love it.  I have lived in Queens, Harlem, Union Square, Wall Street, Staten Island and who knows where to next.  But when I get there, if it's in the City, I will feel at home.

Here are some pictures of the City (Please inform me if they don't work).

New York City's version of that Sunset - Chelsea

Harlem...believe it or not

Outside my Harlem front door

Bryant Park at lunch time

Bryant Park - at liquid lunch time

My building on Wall Street - I will be back someday
(yes, those are fake people, this is a mock-up)

View overlooking Union Square

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Fast Food Nation-Wide

I don't know if you know this, but the McRib is back in McDonalds for a limited time. It has appeared on McDonald's menus sporadically over the past decade...but I've never seen it. I also discovered last week that there was a Chick-Fil-A in the area. Chick-Fil-A has quite the reputation. However, I've never had it...it appears to be a bit of a southern and perhaps south-western restaurant. Much like In-N-Out burgers it hasn't been in the northeast at all. Having all this happen at the same time presented a problem. I know full well eating any fast food, let alone a McRib, is going to make me feel awful. But I absolutely had to try both of these things. So I decided to knock it all out in one shot so that I would feel awful just the once.

So Today I went out, stopped at McDonalds and picked up a McRib and then literally went across the street and picked up a three-piece chicken strips and a Chick-Fil-A deluxe classic chicken sandwich. Yes I know, I eat a lot...I'm a growing boy.

It was what I thought it would be. Everything was greasy, tasty but not delicious, and I felt awful about myself afterwards. The McRib was OK, nothing great. I was very disappointed in the Chick-Fil-A. I had heard so many good things about it and it was no better than KFC or Wendy's chicken sandwiches.  Though, I will say, the Chick-Fil-A sauce is the best honey mustard ever...and only two or three of its 382,349,874,928 ingredients were chemicals. I was amazed at how packed Chick-Fil-A was. I went into the Mickey D's and it was empty. Across the street there was about two parking spots left in the Chick-Fil-A parking lot and nowhere to sit inside. I imagine this is because it is new and because this area of Pennsylvania loves it's chain restaurants.

Here you go, in all of it's glory...the McRib (those are onions, not fries):

Come here often? No? OK, I'll go over here then

Today I tell the tale of an attempt to have "game". Now, I'm newly single and thus, quite rusty. The fact is I probably never had "game". Frankly, I don't really know what that is. But that's besides the point. No matter what you have, you gotsta keep trying.

This happened about a week ago as I was running some errands. Here in suburban-kinda rural...kinda not, Pennsylvania, the supermarket is your one stop shop for all your errandly needs. It's not only where you go to buy food, but there is a pharmacy, an eye doctor, a bank, fast food, hot dinner, video store, and probably a taxidermist and a mortician. This brings with it an assortment of workers roaming the store.

On this particular day I was finishing up purchasing my mouthwash, Doritos, and hand sanitizer and was leaving the check-out counter towards the door when I noticed the attractive young lady behind the bank counter watching me walk by. I didn't think much of it at that moment, people look at people all the time, god knows I do, so I just turned back towards the door to resume walking out. I mentioned she was attractive, so naturally, I had to get my second look. When I turned to take in the scenery she was still watching me and quickly looked away when she noticed my attention had returned. I'm not a vain person, I rarely assume people are looking at me for any reason I'd be proud of. But I'm also not completely dense...I (sometimes) know what is going on.

Normally, I would accept this for what it was, take it as a compliment and move on with my day. I am not the kind of person that approaches strangers and hits on them, flirts, gets numbers, etc. Specifically, I don't have "game". But this apparently wasn't a normal day for me. Maybe it was the past few months kicking my ass, or maybe it's just not giving a shit anymore, but I stopped dead in my tracks when I noticed she was still watching. I, apparently, wasn't going to just do nothing this time. I turned around and walked up to the bank counter. I smiled brightly at her as she shyly said:

Attractive Bank Teller: "Hi, can I help you?"

Me: "Hello...I'd like some sort of form that I can fill out?"

Attractive Bank Teller: "Um..you mean like a deposit slip?"

Me: "Sure, that'll work."

It didn't matter what form it was. I took the deposit slip and the little pen that was attached to the desk and wrote in big letters diagonally over the form my name and phone number. I put the pen down to let everyone know I was done and waited for her to come back over. I smiled once more, said thank you, made some solid yet non-creepy eye contact, handed her the slip, turned around and left...without turning back.

Now this may not seem like much, particularly after re-reading what I wrote. However, for me, this is a "move". To me this kind of move is done on television shows and/or by very good looking and extremely confident people. I'm no slouch, but I think it's fair enough to say it's not my normal behavior.

She didn't call. Which is perfectly OK, there are plenty of non-insulting reasons why someone wouldn't call. Besides, that wasn't the point. The point was I was confident enough to take it as a compliment and confident enough to do something about it. That's not something I would have done three years ago (the last time I was single). Growth is good.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Honey, you're never going to meet Ryan Reynolds

I'll admit it, I'm a bit of a Teevee snob. I consider 99% of television shows to be absolute mindless dribble. However, there are some shows I cannot get enough off. I believe that's what makes a teevee show great: re-watch-ability. If you can watch the same episode of a show twice in a two month period, and enjoy it each time, that is a great show (or a great episode). Some of my favorite examples are The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Scrubs, Arrested Development and Seinfeld. I can watch any episode of those shows more than once and enjoy it thoroughly.

As it turns out, the other day I was watching one of my favorite episodes of the show I consider to be the most re-watchable (don't judge me), Friends. You remember the "freebie list" episode, right? The one where the gang makes the list of the top five celebrities they'd be allowed to sleep with should the opportunity arise, without suffering any consequences from their significant other. I think we've all had this conversation with our friends and/or boyfriends or girlfriends. I consider it a very important list that I like to keep up to date based on currents events, career arc, hotness fluctuation, recent trends, taste maturation, as well as any subsequent "improvements" made by the celebrity. I was also inspired by seeing what I believe was a skin-care commercial, with Kate Hudson in it. I had not seen Kate Hudson in a very long time, and she reminded me I needed to consider her for my list.  Also, I'm stuck in Pennsylvania with no car and nowhere to go, so not a whole lot is going right now, so personal stories of goings on are lacking.  I promise it'll perk back up once I'm back in New York City.

With all of this in mind I decided to revamp my top five list. Here you go, and as always, feel free to comment:

5: Keira Knightley: She may be stick figure thin, which typically is not my thing, but my god, have you seen the movie Atonement?

4: Kate Hudson: This is probably, in large part, due to the fact that she is the star of my favorite movie, Almost Famous. Sometimes it is all about the attitude, and she just seems fun.

3: Jessica Biel: And then sometimes it is all about the ass. If you don't know what I'm talking about go watch I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry.

2: Scarlett Johannson: Remember the see-through pink underpants at the beginning of Lost in Translation? No? I don't either.

1: Natalie Portman: Ever since she was Padme in the Star Wars movies she has been atop my list and has never been even approached by someone else. I consider her perfect: ivy-league educated, New York, beautiful, talented, and funny. Sold.

Now, I realize I have a certain amount of lady listeners (silly rabbit, you can't listen to a blog). I also have excess manly, so I can afford to give some away by making a list of what my top five would be if I were a woman, so that my lady listeners (damnit, again) have something to argue in their heads about, though with no explanations this time, that'd be weird. Note, they will probably be stereotypical "hunks" because frankly, guys don't think about this a lot, except for number 1...that one just makes sense to me. Here you go lady listeners (I give up):

5: John Legend
4: Colin Farell
3: George Clooney
2: That dude who plays soccer who married the Spice Girl
1: Ryan Reynolds

Thursday, November 4, 2010


I've decided good blogs have easy posts that let the author be lazy themed posts that, perhaps, give the reader things to look forward too. So, with that in mind, every Thursday I'm going to list three things that you should be listening to/watching/doing, etc. This week, as it will be often, it is three songs you should listen to.

I have a very peculiar taste in music. It is all over the place, so these songs have absolutely nothing to do with each other.

In no particular order:

1) Frank Sinatra: "At Long Last Love (The Real McCoy)"

2) Kid Cudi: "Soundtrack 2 My Life". You might recognize it as the theme song from the show World of Jenks.

3) Red Hot Chili Peppers: "Hard to Concentrate". This is one of the most important songs in the world to me.

There you have it. Certainly an eclectic mix. Hit Itunes and listen and be sure to let me know what you think.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

"It's called Blue Ruin.."

I suppose if I'm going to write a personal blog, I am going to have to let you into my personal life.  At least, two or three years ago the Tree used to do that all the time.  I  guess I felt more comfortable displaying myself back then.  Perhaps it'll be good for me to do it nowadays.  Anyway, for those of you that actually know me (no, Timbo Jones is not my real life name) you will likely be familiar with, at minimum, part of this.  For those that don't know me, it is new.  With everyone in mind, I won't go into great detail...not yet.

Yesterday, something happened that, right now, is really bothering me. Specifically, it's making me fear for my long term psychological well being in a way things haven't up until this point.  You see, in April of 2008 I met this girl, let's call her "Aphrodite".  I met Aphrodite one day on a law school related weekend trip.  I am not exaggerating when I say that a week later we were in love with each other.  We actually told each other this and recognized how ridiculous it was to say this so soon.  What I didn't realize when I met her (for the first 5 days) was that she had a fiancĂ©.  For the purposes of what you think of her, i'll just say, she never cheated on him and she ended it before we began anything.  We dated for the next two years and two months...blissfully I might add.

Now, I wouldn't be telling you all of this if something didn't happen, and if some of you are good with calendars, you already know the relationship ended this past June.  Let's just say it did not end well, it ended (and still doesn't exist) against my will,  it wasn't because of anything I did, and it has been a long arduous road attempting to get over it without any sort of help from Aphrodite...who now lives 1730 miles away.  First person who doesn't personally know me to guess where she currently resides based on the information you now have will get a shout out in the next post.  I'm also expecting nobody to respond to this post, so I will likely not be shouting anybody out.

On to what happened yesterday.  So, I restarted this blog a few days ago.  As expected, I do not have many visitors yet.  However, a twitter presence I did not have a couple of years ago has helped me reach a few readers each of the past few days...not a bad start.  Each day, probably a couple of times a day, I will check the sitemeter to see how many people have read the Tree and where they are from.  I find where people are reading the Tree to be very interesting.  So far, most are from the New York metro area...but the Tree has reached Florida, D.C., Seattle, New Hampshire and even Texas.  This intrigues me.  With all those interesting places reading I didn't expect one reader, less than a mile from where I lived for a year, to be the one that threw me for a loop.  Yesterday, at around five o'clock I checked my sitemeter and had one new reader from New York City.  Now that was inocuous enough...it means very little.  However, sitemeter also will tell you how people got to your page...in this instance, this reader found the Tree through a google search.  What did he/she search for on google?  And why would it peak my interest?  The reader had searched for "Aphrodite" (he searched for her real name).  You see, back when the Tree was a politics blog, Aphrodite was a guest blogger for a week while I was away.  To distinguish these posts for what was a healthy readership back then I had her display her name in the bylines.  Obviously, this path to my blog sparked my curiosity.  I then noticed where the IP address was specifically located in New York City, something sitemeter supplies.  The visitor was coming to the Tree from a computer located on the NYU campus.  It specifically listed NYU on sitemeter, even taking the time to explain to me that NYU meant it was "educational".  Now, Aphrodite only knows one person from NYU that I can think of........her ex fiance.

Now, I can care less that he is googling her.  What concerns me is the fact that it has been over two and a half years since they broke up and he is still apparently not over her.  This scares me because if I'm still that concerned with her in two and a half year I will likely have completely lost my mind by that point.  Obviously I am not him, and they had been engaged for quite some time when they broke up.  However, I almost proposed to her earlier this year, and was planning on it as soon as I had the money to buy a ring.  I understand I am not the same person as he is, and this is a completely different circumstance (to say the least).  But, everyone tells me "it just takes time" and that "one day it will just feel better".  In my head this makes sense....but...what if it doesn't "just take time" or what if it takes too much time like it appears to be taking for ex fiance?  It just scares me is all.  I don't exactly know what I'm doing here.  I mean, Blunt Delivery has a tutorial for me, but it only takes me so far.  I'm terrified that it might take two effing years to get over this girl, partly because it's difficult to get over this kinda thing, and partly because I'm never entirely positive I want to.  Now I've gotten over one girl before...but that took a damn long time.  I just don't want to waste any of my "awesome years" (side note: watch How I Met Your Mother) because of this.  I ain't gettin any younger! Really, this poor kid googling Aphrodite just scares me. I don't want to end up like that.

So, does anybody have any suggestions? I write this after having watched Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind...and the memory erasing technology that movie led me to believe might some day exist has, to my disappointment, not been invented.  Your worldly advice and kind/unkind words would be appreciated.  Part of the wonders of having a blog is being able to interact with readers so I encourage you to comment.  Also, if you know me, please refrain from saying my real name.  And, if you suggest scotch you won't be helping, but I'll very much appreciate the enabling.  I've tried that.  It leads to headaches, inappropriate emails/texts, and larger credit cards bills/emptier wallets.  Listen, just hook a brother up.  Writing about it is therapeutic, but interacting with others who have clean  slates on the topic helps too.  Plus, I'm done bothering my friends and family with this, they've done enough.  So I do what any self-respecting mid-twenties, facebooking, tweeting loner does...I turn to the interwebz.