Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Goodbye, Dolly

Or, more accurately, "Have you seen Dolly, 'cause I haven't?"

For some odd reason, when preparing my loose agenda for my little 4 day staycation this past weekend, I made a mental note to be sure to attend the performance of "Hello, Dolly!" at Rollins College on Sunday. The problem was, it was Saturday, not Sunday.

So while I made my way to Oviedo Mall Regal Cinemas on Saturday to watch the 2:05 pm showing of "10 Cloverfield Lane," I should have been arriving on the Winter Park campus of Rollins College for the 2:00 pm showing of the live musical I'd already paid for. For the movie I used one of my free Regal cinema tickets but I actually lost 22 dollars...the cost of the "Hello, Dolly!" ticket.

Ouch.

This brain fart kinda fuck up is becoming more and more common lately. I think it's because I'm so pre-occupied with my sobriety phase. (Yeah, the latest one. Dashed a 10-day streak by "imbibing" on Friday but quickly got back on the horse and have been clean for four days now. Woo hoo.)

The doctor increased my Wellbutrin to 300mg a day recently so that seems to make me a bit ADD as well, but I really think it's mild alcohol withdrawals.

I may as well continue with the recent updates since I seem to be drifting that way...

I finally did it. I closed my Facebook account. I'd already whittled my "friends" down to just 19 anyway and deleted almost all content from my timeline and photo albums. Twitter and Instagram are still active but I haven't contributed to either in years and I never check out anyone I used to follow anymore. I'm so anti-social media.

Ric texted and called me once he found out he wasn't connected to me on Facebook anymore. He wasn't sure if I'd closed the account or specifically blocked him. I didn't return the text or voicemail. I see no reason. It takes too long for him to "get the hint" that our friendship is effectively dissolved. No bad feelings on my end...I just don't see the use. He's so into himself all the time and cares little about details of my life, I'm sure he'll soon get over it.

Works okay. Just chugging along. Doing a bit more work than in the past now that I essentially do half the Med Manager paperwork but it's good busy work. Mookie's replacement Mikisha lasted only a few weeks...she just left a couple weeks ago. Now this new girl Tosha is alright but she isn't the go-getter self-initiative type like Mikisha and Mookie were. She plays the disappearing act for hours at a pop game. Ugh, I hope it doesn't lead down that rabbit hole.

So it seems that actually a few other goodbyes are in order if we include beer, Facebook, Ric and work-downtime.

Ah well, to all "good" things come an end.

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Sad SAC Crisis

Ah yes, another one of my creatively named "crises." This blog has posts of me talking about my many Defarge Crises, Almond Joys and Embarqings. We've seen the '84 Malaise, The Crisis of '86, Don't Worry/Be Happy, Black Winter, The Crash of '96, New London Syndrome and, of course, Koyaanisqatsi. And let's not forget those pesky Christy's Syndromes.

Now, to be honest, some of these I've mentioned before but I think I really haven't for others. Another calamity of self-confidence I haven't shared yet is the String Art Clown incident.

Back when I was maybe about 12-years-old or so I was returning home from somewhere (school? the woods? I don't remember) and this older kid (maybe in his early teens?) started following me and teasing me. This happened a lot when I was a kid. Not sure if it was my animated behavior (i.e. early flaming queen syndrome LOL) or awkward geekiness (being a gay nerd can be rough on a kid) but bullies always targeted me.

This kid though, just wouldn't let it go. He was bold enough to come right into our driveway as I scurried into the house. From there he yelled up to the windows and demanded I come out and fight him. I know my father wasn't home 'cause he would have scared the little fuck away if he was and if mom was home, she wasn't around to run to I guess. (In hindsight I guess we kids were home alone that day. They didn't do it often since they didn't trust me as the oldest to be put "in charge," but they may have left us to be latchkey kids on this day.)

In any event, somehow my sister got involved in this by coming to my defense. No, not by being a bull dyke and kicking this punk's ass. That iteration of her had yet to fully express itself at this time. She just yelled back at the kid through the open windows and started saying why this kid should leave me alone. One of the things she told him was that I was a good artist. The bully, unconvinced by just her say so demanded proof and so she went and got a school art project I'd done.

Now if my recollection isn't entirely at fault, by this time in my life I had completed in my 6th grade art class at least two artworks which I was pretty proud of. A simple yet clean-lined and fairly well drafted (for my age) egg tempera painting of a house on fire and firemen working to put it out (I think it was for some safety themed project) and my seminal pre-teen piece: the incredibly complex and imaginative pencil drawing of lower Manhattan and New York harbor laminated in plastic.

But rather than either of these, she grabbed some art project I'd done maybe back in 3rd or 4th grade? not sure, but it was a very simple and childish drawing of a clown in string art. I hated it but I guess my parents liked it if it was still around.

She showed it to the kid and he softly chuckled, shook his head and quietly left. I was dumbstruck. My later, summed-up impression of this was that the kid had either thought I was much younger than I looked or that I was a complete fucking retard.

Fast-forward to the present and my mood as of late and I'm stingingly reminded of that mixture of humiliation and defeat I felt that day. Lately I've been looking back at what few accomplishments I've made in my life and they just seem pitifully half-assed and extremely sub-par. I can't point to one thing I've done (or so I am compelled to believe) that I'm proud of when I'm feeling this way.

So "Sad SAC" stands for Sad String Art Clown. A reminder that you can blow hot air up your ass only so long before you or someone else slaps you out of your delusion. You're nothing special, buddy. You're one stupid small being in a sad small world in a meaningless, cold and indifferent universe.

But fret not. I'm not reaching for the razor blades just yet. I'm just muddling through it. I'll see the light at the end of the tunnel soon. Besides, I haven't come up with a snazzy name for some kind of suicidal ideation crisis. Hopefully I'll never have to.

Saturday, April 09, 2016

Ugh!

Someone call the fire department!

Friday, April 08, 2016

Mini Veruca Report

Though I'm still "gardening" (myFico Forums term for letting Fico score increase gradually over time by refraining from requesting new credit and letting time take care of old bad debts) I requested non-credit report pull credit line increases online this morning for some of my cards and here are the results:

BankAmericard Cash Rewards VISA: Didn't request.

Fairwinds Credit Union Platinum VISA: Didn't request.

Chase Amazon.com VISA Rewards: Didn't request.

DISCOVER Card: Credit Line increased from $6,500 to $9,500.

Both Citi cards: Increase denied.

FNBO AMEX: Increase "unavailable."

Barclay Bank Choice Rewards VISA: Will review and respond with decision.
      Edit: Next day: approved Credit Line increase from $4,000 to $10,000.

American Express Blue Cash Everyday: Credit Line increased from $4,000 to $10,000.

Walmart MASTERCARD: Increase denied.

Hmm. Some very disparate results. Who knows why. Oh well, glad to get what I got though.

Tuesday, April 05, 2016

My Name Will Live On Forever

In Elite: Dangerous, if you are the first player to discover a star, planet, asteroid field whatever, your username is noted as the first discoverer* and whoever visits that system from then on will see your name.

This video highlights one of my grand tours of the area of space outside of the "bubble" and as you can see, makes me a cool 1.4 million in profit by selling the cartographic data.

If you're ever in the regions named in the video as I'm acknowledged for my exploration efforts, drop on by and know my name is Ozymandias.

*An explorer only gets credit for the discovery if he makes it back to a station and sells the data. There well could be some tragic earlier ones who scanned my systems, but history will never know.

Sunday, April 03, 2016

Sorry. I Hate Old People.

I know, I know...that's a terrible thing to say. But really, after I tell you about their behavior this afternoon, I think you'll join the anti-elderly brigade as well.

I attended the 2 pm performance of Mozart's The Magic Flute, by the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra at, unfortunately, the still "under renovation" and "worse-than-Bob-Carr" theater: Plaza Live on Bumby Avenue in the Colonialtown area of Orlando.

Of course I knew that a Sunday matinee showing would be jam packed with the blue haired set. And, my previous visit to this torture chamber of a venue was a clear and present signal that the OPO seems to pack 'em in by the nursing home full.

Just like last time, the chairs were still just old metal folding chairs crammed as close together as possible...allowing absolutely no breathing room for larger folks like me, for sure. My ass was killing me by the end of the nearly two and a half hours.

Also, when I came here in December to the Bach concert it was winter so, understandably (somewhat) it was quite warm in the place, I guess so the old fucks wouldn't complain. Well now it's spring and it still felt like the heat was on in there! You've heard of "Sweatin' to the Oldies?"...well I was sweatin' WITH the oldies!

The worse though was their cranky ass attitude.

The two old Jewish ladies to my right practically slapped me aside trying to wave "hello" to their other old lady friend in another row.

"Get that bony, vein-riddled paw outta my face, grandma, unless you want me to tear it from your arm, bitch!" I screamed silently to myself.

The grey-haired bag in front of me kept her fucking cell phone on forgetting how to shut it off while the overture was underway, blinding me with her colorful hot-air balloon themed lock screen.

"Why don't you get on that hot-air balloon and fly away you wrinkly, dusty twatted cunt!" I again, soundlessly bemoaned.

And why the fuck didn't they clap? Only occasionally did they give some half-hearted attempt to slap their hands together in appreciation of the performers. Did they think it sucked? As I'll lay out for you in a minute or so once I'm done with this tirade, the performance definitely did NOT suck.

And lastly, for now, why did so many of them chuckle during the Queen of the Night Aria?

"LISTEN YOU FUCKING NEARLY DEAD ASSWIPES...THIS IS MY FAVORITE FUCKING OPERATIC PIECE AND SHE'S DOING IT SPOT ON! DO NOT FORCE ME TO PUT YOU DOWN RIGHT HERE AND NOW 'CAUSE I SWEAR I'LL FUCKIN' DO IT!!!" was my immediate response. To no one but me in my head, naturally.

Alright, enough about them. On to the show...

Looking up on stage before the show began, I didn't have high hopes, I'll tell you. Minimalist theater is understandable and I can get into it, sure. But since this crappy former rock venue still looked like some metal band roadies puke-stained hangout the staging was all unkempt and looked literally like they took everything from backstage and put it out front.

But as the performance got underway...with "stage hands" sweeping and checking mics and the lighting director stage center during the overture doing light checks...well it became apparent that the backstage look to the entire proscenium minus the barren block of platform in center stage WAS the set. We were being let in on the workings and behind-the-scenes mechanics of the opera. But more than that, these "stage hands" and assorted "crew members" were actually the performers.

It was a great surprise when the 18th century period costumed players were waiting for the performer in the role of Papageno to appear on stage...and no one came out, so it looked as if the troupe made the decision to put a hapless stage hand up there and force him to perform the role. And then he sang. And you knew it was all a farce. He was the actor playing Papageno. Slick.

It also provided an opportunity to blame the drafted stagehand's supposed naivety with the "planned" German dialogue lines as the reason why the dialogue was "ad-libbed" to English. Again, very slick.

All the music was sung in German of course with the usual projected subtitles above the stage. Alex Elliot played the "last minute" Papageno wonderfully. He was spirited and quite funny plus his signing was most-excellent to boot. He frankly stole the show.

The Queen of the Night was played by Jamilyn Manning-White, in the vein of the backstage viewpoint subplot, as a kinda tongue-in-cheek diva. Perhaps this led some to think her famous aria was sung full of high-pitched trills for laughs. But I know she sang it as true as can be.

She didn't accentuate the visual portrayal of sheer evil madness as the great Diana Damrau, she acted rather aloof to the pathos of the words she was singing. Probably much like a tired diva would who'd performed the piece oh so many times before. Or perhaps that's just my wandering imagination. That happens when you become mesmerized by this cascading ethereal song.

Every performer with the exception of one was spot on really. The enlightened Sarastro who sets our love-struck starring couple on their Masonic-like test of trials and tribulations was played by Wilbur Pauley. I guess the role calls for a bass. But this guy was forcing it. He wasn't at all good in my humble opinion. I have no idea what he was doing there. Oh and of course...

He was way too old.