MARK SWEENEY

Dear Diary 2005

Home
The Book / The DVD
My Resume
Audio and Video clips
Dear Diary 2010
Dear Diary 2009/Iraq
Dear Diary 2007
Dear Diary 2006
Dear Diary 2005
My Afghanistan vacation
Assorted Pics
Pics from the road
Grave site pics
Iraq/Killshot pics
Favorite movie quotes
Some Quotes
Links
Corporate Work
Contact Me

                   2005

1/1/05

Dear Diary-

The New Year is here. Wow. Another New Year. Didn’t we just have one like, nine months ago? Is it just me, or is New Year’s the most over-hyped, anti-climactic holiday of the year? The whole month of December, people look forward to New Year’s Eve. Everyone looks at it as a new start. A chance to fix themselves, to make it all better. Hogwash. Does anyone really keep their resolutions? I don’t. Shit, I don’t even make them. What’s the point? I am who I am, let’s not kid ourselves. Sure, I could shed a few pounds, work out, eat right, donate my time to charity etc. But I don’t. Why? I don’t know. Laziness perhaps. I like having cookies, and I’m not going to quit eating them.

As New Year’s Eve approaches, the excitement mounts, the anticipation gets the best of you. You can’t wait for the countdown. The countdown of the year. It’s almost over. The countdown. Wow. This will be something. Then, as the countdown concludes, everybody does their kiss, then….what? Now what? It’s over, the year is over. Everyone is standing around, looking around like they’re waiting for something else to happen. Well, nothing else does happen. That’s it. The countdown is it. I saw the live footage of the Vegas celebration and it was the same thing. Everybody waiting for the countdown and then boom, nothing. It doesn’t matter where you are, it’s still the same thing. The whole Times Square thing is amazing, I just can’t see standing asshole to belly button in a crowd that size, watching the ball drop. You want to see balls drop…(you can insert your own joke here). This year at the club everyone was gone by 12:30. What the hell? I didn’t even see any really drunk people. What happened? Are we all really that old? Times have changed. New Year’s used to be a big deal, I remember being out until dawn many a New Year’s Eve. Not now. I was back at the hotel by 1. Isn’t that something? Back at the hotel by 1 a.m. on New Year’s Eve. Hey, Party Boy, take five.

 

1/15/05

Dear Diary-

Been two weeks. Not much to report. Had a good weekend in Bloomington, IL. You heard me. In Joliet this weekend. Apparently I’m huge in northeast, central Illinois. Divisional playoffs were tonight. The Rams played the Falcons. I was working and taped the game to watch after the shows. Hard task to accomplish. Being in club full of people who know what’s going on and trying to stay away from them. No, I’m not anti-social, I just don’t anyone talking to me. I had to tell people not to update me, as I was taping the game to enjoy later. Naturally the other children kept teasing me and being cruel by giving me fake scores and asking “are you sure you don’t want to know the score”?  I felt from the vibe I was getting, the Rams were losing. Then as I get on stage for the second show, some guy yells out “the Rams suck,” yes, thank you sir, thank you for ruining my plans for later. Good show, bad game.

 

 

1/17/05

Dear Diary-

Had a corporate gig tonight in Lincoln, NE. A company Christmas party. A Christmas party in Jan. I hope I can still say Christmas. They actually called it a “holiday party.” It seems there were people who were offended by all the Christmas stuff this year. Yes, yes, nothing is quite so offensive as the baby Jesus. People protested nativity scenes this year. Nativity scenes, for the love of Pete. I’m guessing these people just have too much free time and not enough hobbies. If you don’t celebrate Christmas that’s fine. Celebrate what ever holiday you want, but we’ve had Christmas decorations up since the beginning of time. Sorry. That’s just the way it is. You can’t be offended by a Christmas tree, or an ornament, or Santa Claus or tinsel. Don’t be an idiot.

I wouldn’t be offended if someone puts up Hanukkah decorations, or Kwanzaa decorations. Hell, I don’t even care if you put up a Festivus pole. People get offended too easily. Get a clue. People like seeing Christmas decorations, it makes them feel good. Anyway, I’m doing a “holiday party” for a group from ages14-80, quite a range. I don’t have much material for a fourteen year old, and I’m not adapting. I’ll make him adapt. The twenty somethings are all hammered, it is, after all, the holidays. The room is shaped like an L and I’m in the pointy part of the L’s foot. There are only thirty people who can see me, and they don’t care. It goes down hill from there. I start getting heckled by Lance, a 21 year old who’s trashed. Heckled, at a corporate gig. That’s a first. I asked where his parents were, they didn’t come, it was a work party. I got through the hour though, the people behind me really seemed to enjoy the show. I’m off to Detroit. God’s speed little one.

 

1/19/05

Dear Diary-

I’m in Detroit in January, storms a comin’. What a surprise. We’re supposed to get over a foot. I hope supplies hold out.

1/20/05

Dear Diary-

Been snowing for over a day. Getting bad. Supplies are low. Temperature got down to -14. Brisk. Cold. Deadly.

1/21/05

Dear Diary-

Still snowing. I may never see sunlight again. Temperature again below zero. Kerosene’s getting low. Food’s gone. Hope is fading.

1/22/05

Dear Diary-

Major storm. Roads closed, airports shut down. People dying. Hallucinations have begun…I think. I hope they’re hallucinations. If not, big trouble has started.

1/23/05

Dear Diary-

Desperation sets in. Come to realize, I may never be rescued. Hope is lost. Had to eat one of the dogs today. Pray for my soul.

1/24/05

Dear Diary-

Made it back to St. Louis. Everything’s OK.

 

1/29/05

Dear Diary-

Well, it's happened again.  For the third time this month, I met a young, beautiful woman who wanted to fix me up with her mom.  Ouch.  Quick, someone get me a branch to bite down on as the barbed spear is removed from my torso.  Has it really come to this?  Has it come to the point that young women are looking at me as a prospective father instead of a potential lay?  That is a harsh realization.  Granted, I haven't dated a woman in her twenties in awhile, but still.  The fact that it's happening more frequently is quite unsettling. No matter how old a man gets, he still likes to think he's got a little something something in the tank.  That he can still be attractive to young women.  Well, think again old timer, I want you to meet my mom Gladys.  

I now have to go clean the snow off my car.

I hope I can do it without having a heart attack.

 

2/2/05

Dear Diary-

It’s Groundhog day. Without a doubt, one of our more exciting and anticipated holidays. I don’t even know if this is an actual holiday. Nobody gets off work, although they do have Groundhog Day shopping extravaganzas. I’m in Birmingham, AL, and the groundhog will not be seeing his shadow today. Unless, of course, he’s standing in front of a spotlight. As of right now, I’m sitting at restaurant called “Jack’s”, I’m having my clutch replaced. Not at Jack’s, but down the road. It will take about six hours and I have no where to go. My time-killing skills will be pushed to the limit today. I’m just outside of Birmingham in a place called Bessemer. What to say about Bessemer? It’s industrial. Which means of course, I have no where to go, no way to get there, and nothing to do once I arrive. I’m stuck. I’m stuck in Bessemer, Alabama and I hope my will holds out. Killing off six hours is no simple task. I’ve already walked over and tried to take a tour of the pipe plant, no go there. “Sir, we don’t do tours, this is a foundry.” I’m sitting in Jack’s watching and listening to the citizens of Bessemer, come in, grab their breakfast and talk in a dialect that has to be heard to be believed. Yes, Bessemerians have southern accents. And from what I can see, they don’t care that much about fat, cholesterol, or any of the other bad things breakfast food brings. I’m no better though, I just plowed through a double order of biscuits and gravy. Oh boy, that’s good eatin’. You have to say eatin’ down here. Nobody’s eating, they’re a eatin’. B’s and G’s, what a combo. It’s the heaviest meal I think you can put in your gullet. Right now it’s sitting in my belly, absorbing moisture and swelling, roughly to the size of a volleyball. No food makes you as sleepy as b’s and g’s. If I don’t get a nap soon, I’ll start to get crabby. I wonder if anyone will care if I curl up in my booth.

There’s a couple sitting near me and they’re both reading the paper. Nothing says “We’ve been married forever” more than two people sitting at the same table with the newspaper held up in front of their faces. I’m nodding off, mayhap, I’ll go for a walk.

Back from my walk, I went to the thrift store. Wow. Thrift stores are amazing places. I understand that people like retro clothes, but I’ve never been able to wear someone else’s duds. I don’t know why, maybe it’s because clothes are so personal. Nothing gets as close to you as your clothes. It absorbs all your sweat, scent, hair, pieces of skin…aaaaaaahhhhhh. Gross. I mean come on, how do you put on a pair of used pants?.  They do have books there, I could do that. But they have some odd things too. You can a get a Crimson Tide mug with no top, a Dick Trickle cap that has sweat stains and a pair of 20 year old Donald Duck sunglasses right out of the same bin.  You'll find a spool of 12 gauge wire sitting on top of a monopoly game with no money in it, which is snugged up next to an extension cord with a broken prong.  I was mesmerized.  Then, I meandered over to the “electronics department”, that was something, lets's see, what to do with a 6 inch black and white computer monitor on sale for $4?, I even found a beta max player, not a recorder mind you, just the player. There were TV’s and stereo’s lining the shelves, and it looks like they’d been lining the shelves since someone brought them in instead of throwing them away.  I saw people in there with shopping carts!  What?  How could you possibly find enough stuff to fill up a shopping cart?  I was in there for almost 2 hours and ended up leaving with a set of salt and pepper shakers with no plugs and a shower head.

 

2/14/05

Dear Diary-

It's my first Valentine's Day since the divorce.  The tears have subsided, the sobbing continues, but the tears have all dried up.  I spent the day reading Poe with a head full of mescaline, a belly full of Wild Turkey and twirling a 9mm on my finger.  Waiting...waiting for the darkness to envelope me. 

I'm just teasing.  I had an uneventful Valentine's Day.  I flew back from Utah.  Ah flying.  I don't fly much anymore, it's just too much of a hassle.  Everyone is a suspect.  They made a 2 year old take off her shoes.  What a dumb ass, doesn't he have any idea how hard it is to put shoes on a child, now he wants them taken off.  Which just makes the kid think that the shoes don't have to go back on.  Now the whole process of getting the shoes on, begins again.  Brilliance.   Valentine's Day in the air.  It was a cheap day with no pressures or expectations.  Kind of nice actually, very serene.  I've had worse.  Like in 1987, remember that one Mr. Diary?  I had lunch with my girlfriend at the time and she dumped me.  On Valentine's Day.  Can you imagine that?  Apparently, she wanted to spend it with her new boyfriend, the one I had no idea even existed.  Then I had to go into work for a "special meeting" where I was fired.  Holy Crap Batman, how do you get over being dumped and fired on Valentine's Day, all within 2 hours?  By heavy drinking, that's how you get over it.  Very heavy drinking over a couple of days.  Later, everything will be OK.

 

2/16/05

Dear Diary-

Hey there.  I'm back, back on the road and back from vacation.  I didn't make any entries during my time off.  I just didn't feel like it.  Plus, I went skiing and at my age, when you're done skiing for the day, you're done for the day.  Period.   Oh sure, you eat and sit in the hot tub and drink beer.  But you don't "do" anything.   I love skiing.  I skied with my nieces one day, 6 and 8,  I couldn't keep up with the 8 year old.  How's that for a sad day?  She doesn't stop on the way down, it's just head down and stop at the bottom.  Well... Uncle Mark doesn't ski that way.  I ski for 20-30 seconds, then take a breather.  That's just the way it's done now.   Oh, I used to be able to ski 45-50 seconds without a break, but that's the old days.  I tried snowboarding for the first time.  That was a mistake.  I've been skiing for over 20 years and never tried it.  Well, it turns out there's a reason for that.  First of all, once you stand up on a snowboard, you're snowboarding.  There's no ready position, no safe zone, once you're up...you're off, when the board's ready to go, you're gone.   Adios muchacho, be safe little one.  You fall forwards, backwards and to both sides.  I never knew you could fall on your face and ass at the same time.  A snowboard makes that possible.  I quickly realized I'm too old to bounce down the side of a mountain, and that's all I was doing, bouncing down the side of a 10,000 foot mountain, tumbling and falling, falling and tumbling.  Total bullshit.  I said good bye to the board and hello to going to bed at 9:30 on a Saturday night. 

Party on Garth.

 

3/6/05

Dear Diary-

I've missed you.  No, really.  I have.  I know the point of a diary is to make daily entries.  Do you know how hard that is?  Writing?  Every day?  Come on.  First of all, I'm not a 14 year old girl with her first major crush.  Secondly, not enough interesting things happen every day to make an entry.  I try to make each day interesting, but that is a huge task.  There are periods of life that are boring.  Like February.  I think February has always sucked.  The Super Bowl is over but winter isn't.  It's just a blah month.  Anticipation of spring intensifies each time the temp gets above 40.  I just spent the weekend in Ann Arbor Michigan.  Again, with the Michigan thing in the middle of winter.  I'm on my way to Tampa.  Florida, ahh, a winter sanctuary, sunshine, oranges, oceans, beaches, and of course, the original Hooters.  It's good to be going to Florida in the winter.  I've got my shorts packed, my golf clubs with me and a Florida state of mind going on.  I'm very excited.  Florida in the winter.  This is going to be good.  I'm going to grab some sunshine and rub it all over my body.  This time of course, I'll keep my clothes on.  One doesn't need to start a trip with another summons.  Sunshine, blue sky, what a day to take a walk in the park.  Come on, sing with me.   I'm stopping in Atlanta for a couple of days to visit with my buddy Dave.  Dave, Gonzo, Leboot, the man, the myth, the legend.  I'm sure I'll have something to report after a couple of days at Dave's.  There's always something happening at chateau Leboutillier.

 

3/9/05

Dear Diary-

I made it to Florida.  It's 40 degrees and raining.  Ha Ha.  You got me.  Had a good couple of days at Dave's.  He's quite the corker.  Met him in college, thought he was an idiot at first because he had painted his car like a zebra.  That was in '83 and I'm still hanging out with him.  Who knew?  He lives in Atlanta in what we call "chateau Leboutillier"  why?  Because to us, it is a chateau.  It's not fancy, but it has what you need, a pool with a grotto, waterfall, hot tub, a chipping green with a tee off area, including a sand trap, a tiki hut, a pool table, 2 dogs and 3 cats.  Like I said everything that you need as a growing boy.  I had my own room at the house until last week, it seems Dave tore down a wall and made "his room"  a master suite.  The result?  My room is gone.  He has also painted naked ladies on the walls of the house.  I mean everywhere you look there are naked paintings.  He's also found a new hobby, making things out of clay or wax or some shit.  But the only things he makes are little vagina's and penises, which he adheres to the walls.  It's like walking around Caligula's house.  He's a strange, perverted little man.  Of course the only reason he can do this is he doesn't have a wife anymore. 

 

3/11/05

Dear Diary-

It was warm today.  I went for a run on the beach.  I don't know why.  It's too hard to run on sand.  It looks sexy on television commercials, but it's a pain in the ass. There were some high school kids playing tackle football on the beach.  Wow.  Remember that?  Remember when you could play tackle football with no pads and not evern think about getting hurt? Not worrying about dislocting a shoulder or snapping a collarbone or breaking a hip?  It was amazing, all I could think of, was "well, that would've broken something."  Sad old man.

 

3/12/05

Dear Diary-

This may be my last entry for a spell.  I went and hit golf balls today for the first time since I hurt my shoulder during the skydiving excursion.  Instead of starting off small, I had to go for the Jumbo bucket.  170 balls, that's a lot of balls.  For someone who is sore from getting out of bed in the morning, that's a lot of balls.  As of right now, I'm transcribing this to an assistant.  My fingers hurt.  Along with my back, shoulders, hips, neck and wrists.  I can't type, I had a hell of a time taking a shower, and I can't go potty. It's impossible for me to function.  I guess I won't sign up for the rugby league. Sweet dreams.

 

3/21/05

Dear Diary-

Guess what?  I went to my first Nascar race yesterday.  The Golden Corral 500.  Oh yeah, it's one of the big three.  Every driver wants to win Indy, Daytona and the Golden Corral 500.  I've never even heard of it.  I'm not a racing fan, but please, the Golden Corral 500?  I tell  you what--those people love their racin'.  They camp out for the weekend right there in the parking lot.  It's like Woodstock without the hippies.  Not many hippies at the race.  A lot of hats though.  Race fans always say "you've got to see it live" and I did.  It was impressive.  We actually got to switch seats with some guys for about 30 laps and sat in the second row.  I couldn't take much of that my dear diary.  By the time I was done down there, I had about a pound of tire rubber stuck to my face and more floating in my beer. Does tire rubber count as fiber?  Do you know dear diary?  I don't, if it does, I'm good to go for awhile.  It was cool at first, then after about 200 laps, boredom kicks in, all they do is go around in a circle for three hours.  Man, do something.  Maybe they should give them smoke bombs or something, something they can throw at the other drivers to distract them.  That would be fun.  There was only one wreck and it was at the beginning, that was exciting.  The thing I noticed most was the noise.  It's loud, oh my goodness it was loud.  Most of the regulars had their own headsets, me, I had earplugs.  One guy next to me got up and yelled "Junior" each time Dale Jr. went by, hey numbnuts, I can't even hear you, sit down and quit screaming.  Nascar may be the only sporting event where the women you go with don't talk the entire time.

3/25/05

Dear Diary-

Have you seen spring?  Do you have spring where you are?  I don't.  My mind is in spring, but the weather is not.  I played golf today.  Seemed like a good idea.  I mean after all, it's spring isn't it?  We could only play nine holes, then our little fingers got cold.  I lost a ball in the snow.  What the hell?  Doesn't a young man's fancy turn to love in the spring?  My fancy is turning down the hall looking for a blanket.

3/28/05

Dear Diary-

I'm back home.  Four weeks on the road.  What a whore. 4230 miles.  Nicely done.  Are you insane?  Is that what you're asking me?  Don't sass me diary, I'll put a whuppin' on ya.  It's good to be home.  It was warm today.  I cleaned the car.  Ouch.  Remember that box of leftover pizza you were asking me about?  I found it.  I went ahead and tossed it.  Not even a good microwaving would have salvaged it.  Too bad, it was a good pie.  I filled up a trash bag.  I don't know where it all comes from.  Was I picking up trash on the side of the highway?  Did I adopt a stretch of highway somewhere?  Have I been strolling stretches of dark highway filling my car with trash?  Exactly where did all this garbage come from?  I wish I knew my diary, I wish I knew.

3/30/05

Dear Diary-

I just got back from the Dr.  I had to get my physical.  A complete physical, which of course means a prostate exam.  It's necessary, I know, but damn, it's an odd  few moments there with the Doc.  Making small talk while you drop your pants, bend over and you hear him snapping on his rubber glove.  I made some comment like "that stuff sure is slippery" and he responded "would you rather me use sandpaper?"  Oh, he's a corker.  Everything is cool though.  Since my father had some stuff going on in his lower tract this year, I had to schedule a colonoscopy.  Yippee, I can't wait. 

3/31/05

Dear Diary-

Another great day at the Bob and Tom show, you should've been there.  I stopped at Taco Bell on the way home and it was a good stop.  There was an older woman and her teen age grandaughter there, along with a young couple and me, that's it.  All of a sudden there is a commotion behind the counter, and this 17 or 18 year old kid jumps up on the counter, bends over and says "y'all can kiss my black ass," jumps down and walks out the door.  It was great, I did one of those laugh/snorts and damn near lodged a chunk of chili cheese burrito in my sinuses.  All I can think of is "that's how you quit a job."  I've never been able to quit a job like that, I don't think that many of us have.  Wouldn't you like to though?  Just once?  Even if you're not black, just say it anyway.  That would be a blast.  The manager of the store then comes out to make sure that we're all OK.   How hilarious.  "Is everyone allright?"  Yes, ma'am, I think I will survive the trauma I've been through today, I mean with some serious counseling and years of heavy therapy, I will be allright, I will be back on my feet and become a productive member of society once again.   I don't know if grandma will though, she seems pretty shaken.  She actually said "he's still out there, you should call the police and have a warrant issued for his arrest."  I didn't have the heart to tell her that the manager of Taco Bell doesn't have the authority to issue warrants.  We all got through our meal with no more events and everyone went home happy and full.

4/10/05

Dear Diary-

"What the hell's been going on?"

"Nothing"

"Nothing? What do you mean nothing?"

"What else could I possibly mean when I say nothing?"

"I don't know, I just thought something may have gone on since we last conversed."

"We don't converse you idiot, I'm a diary, you write, I record."

"Fine, you don't have to get snotty."

You know sometimes it doesn't pay to be nice.  You try a little courtesy and repaid with scorn.  Damn you diary, damn you.

I had good week in St. Louis.  Home.  Sleeping at home.  Even though I sleep on a futon wrapped in egg foam, it's still home.  People came to see the shows and so we did some.  Sunday's crowd was interesting. Interesting, small, intense, oddly disenfranchised.  I don't know what was going on, but nobody laughed,  through the entire show, not even the short laughs, which sometimes you get with smaller groups, those laughs that say "I think that's funny, but not for very long."  It was almost like they were issuing a challenge.  For the most part, people attend a comedy show with the intention of having some chuckles.   Oh well, life has gone on.  Suprisingly enough, life has gone on.

4/11/05

Dear Diary-

I hope we're cool.  It's Monday.  I had an audition for a national Anheuser Busch commercial today.  Booking that would be sweet.

"Don't hold your breath"

"Who said that?"

"I did numbnuts"

Sometimes I feel like giving this half a sissy a good slap. Anyway.  It's Monday, getting ready for a little 24.  Thanks to Bob of Bob and Tom, I'm addicted to this show.  "Just watch the first episode" he says.  Now, it's never missed.  I still don't believe that all this is happening in one day, but after all, it's only TV.  I just saw this commercial for retirees about how hard it is to build a nest egg on teacher's salaries.  Great, one more reminder that my retirement years will be spent as a door greeter at Wal-Mart.

4/13/05

Dear Diary-

Tom Delay was in the paper again today. He, of course is the Republican from Texas who is the House Majority Leader, an important job.  What is it with politicians?  I had a buddy who was a prison guard in Pennsylvania, he told me if a convicts lips were moving, you knew he was lying.  I think the same is true for politicians.  These guys have some serious balls. OK- he paid his wife and daughter $500,000, I can see that, gotta be a tough job, doing what ever.  It turns out he took a $70,000 golfing trip to Scotland, courtesy of an Indian gambling group that's against internet gambling.  I'm not sure what that means, but it  doesn't sound to good for Tom's ethical situation.  He's also had three buddies indicted for using corporate funds for election stuff, which, apparently is illegal.  CNN said that only 42% of people polled knew who he was, that might change.  I know who you are you little dickens.

4/14/05

Dear Diary-

What is wrong with people?  One of the assistant football coaches from the University of Arkansas is in trouble.  It seems some of the boys on the team have been slacking during practice, so he made them wear pink uniforms.  Pink uniforms.  You know, just to show who was dogging it.  Well, it seems some groups are up in arms over the pink thing.  First of all, Breast Cancer Awareness groups were offended because of the use of pink, they have the pink ribbons, and thought somehow, pink uniforms were insulting them.  I don't play for the Razorbacks, but I can almost guarantee, Breast Cancer was no where near this coaches mind when he took this action.  There just seems like so much more Breast Cancer groups could worry about.  Gay groups were also offended by the use of pink.  Oh for the love of Mike, get a clue.  Why?  Why do they care about pink uniforms?  Is it because when I was a kid, anyone who wore pink was called a sissy and then beaten severely?  Because pink means gay.  I kid of course.  You know something?  The gay groups already took the rainbow, they can't have pink too.  If they want taupe and mauve, they can have them, but we can not, will not, let them take pink.

4/19/05

Dear Diary-

What a couple of days I've had.  You should've been there.  I had to go in for my colonoscopy today.  Yesterday I had to do what they call "flush the system."  I guess somewhat similiar to what they do to the radiator in your car.  Give it a good flush.  Make it so the camera can see.  You have to go without food for 24 hours, then take a laxative and drink a gallon of some crappy tasting stuff to help with the flushing.  I felt OK for a while then you can feel something working inside.  I don't want to go into great detail, but the word gurgling fits.  I was gurgling, gurgling like a stream in a quiet wooded area.  Obviously, I didn't wander far from the house, got some reading done and missed my nap.  I had jello and a popsicle for dinner.  Don't under estimate the power of jello and a popsicle, it was yummy.  So, today I go in for the scope.  I got to wear one of those hospital gowns, very comfortable.  You feel pretty laid back wearing a backless gown.  Almost sexy, seductive.  I wonder what kind of madness will happen while wearing the gown?  They wheeled me into a room with lots of equipment for my prep.  I try to avoid telling anyone what I do for a living in these circumstances because there's always the same response "I'll bet you'll get some material from this."  Yes, yes, much material will come from having this camera rammed into my backside.  Then they give me the sedative, oh the sedative, it's great for about 8 seconds then good night Irene.  I tried to fight it, you know for the fun, but it knocks you out too fast.  I came to in the recovery room.  There are about 15 of us in this room, seperated by curtains.  Turns out they do about 150 of them a day.  150 colonoscopies a day, it's like an assembly line.  It's a search for oddities in the lower tract.  It's a search for polyps.  You don't want them to find polyps.  You always hear about finding polyps.  Polyps, odd word, polyps.  Almost sounds like a candy treat.  "Do you kids wants some polyps"? "Yes, mumsy, we would love some polyps."  They didn't find anything, so I got that going for me.  The funniest part was the recovery room.  When they do the scope, air gets trapped inside.  Lots of air.  The air must escape, and escape it does.  The whole room, 15 of us laying on our gurney's "letting the air escape," it was hysterical, it was like the campfire scene in BLAZING SADDLES.  My dad and I were laughing like school girls.  The staff walks around pretending that nothing is happening.  I guess that must be their favorite part, being in the recovery room during the great air escape.   

5/9/05

Dear Diary-

"Good Lawdy Miss Clawdy, how the hell have you been?"

"Eat me."

"What?"

"You heard me, I said, eat me."

"What's your malfunction?"

"My malfunction? I'll tell you what my malfunction is, you've neglected your duties for several weeks and myself and the people are a little sick of your laziness."

"Damn sweetness, settle down, I've been busy.  Oh, and what people?"

"I don't know names per se, but I'm sure there are people."

"People, yeah people, you're delusional."

"So what the hell have you been so busy doing?"

"Well, it goes like this."

It's been a good couple of weeks.  I haven't done any club work, just corporate gigs.  Sweet.  One night.  In and out.  Money for a week.  Nice.  Groovy.  Just the way sweet papa likes it.  I've spent a ton of time in the yard.  I'm still living with my brother, so it's actually his yard.  He wants to sell the house and make us homeless, so I'm trying to get grass to grow.  The ground is extremely rocky, so it's like trying to grow hair.

I did Bob and Tom again,  It was a most triumphant show.  There were three comics on so it was like a little party.  I also had an audition for a Court TV thing where I was to play a coal miner.  Great, I play golf for three days in a row in the sun, get tan and then audition for the part of a guy who hasn't seen the sun since he was twelve and headed underground with a pick axe.  I'm not holding my breath.  Plus the casting guy said he wasn't sure if I was rough and tumble enough looking to be a coal miner.  I guess doing comedy has made me soft.  I'm off to Memphis tomorrow.  Should be a good week.  I'll try and get back with you soon.  OK?

"Fine."

5/13/05

Dear Diary-

Long distance information, give me Memphis, Tennessee.  Try to find the party tried to get in touch with me.   Sing it baby.   The World Championship BBQ deal is going on this weekend in Memphis. The WORLD Championship BBQ, not some regional thing, we're talking the whole world.  200,000 people in town for BBQ.  The problem is; that's all they're doing.  Going downtown to eat BBQ.  Things have been a little slow at the club.  Apparently I don't have what it takes to pull anyone away from plates full with steaming piles of pig meat.  Even Beale Street is quiet.  Can you imagine such a thing?  BBQ is getting picked over a night of drinking and blues.  What the hell?  These people are insane over BBQ.  There are over 300 booths of different BBQ.  How much can one person eat?  Even on a good day, I couldn't sample 300 kinds of food.  I did a TV interview from the site today.  The local FOX affiliate had a remote thing going on down at the river.  We sat on some 2 story scaffolding and did an interview.  Sitting there with the rising sun in our faces, the grill smoke wafting around us like the morning fog and somewhere in the back ground, I swear I heard some Skynyrd.  We ended up talking about how I threw a robin's egg at a classmate when I was in kindergarten.  Surreal.  8 o'clock in the morning and people are eating plates of ribs and ice cream sandwiches.  Hopefully, the weekend will be busier, they have to get full eventually.

5/14/05

Dear Diary-

I'm still in Memphis.  I took a tour of Sun Records today.  Awesome tour.  It's a small building so the tour doesn't go very far, but it's informative.  The studio is still the same, nothing has changed.  I had my picture taken with the mic that Elvis used when he was there.  Yes, it was cool.

 

myduet.jpg

Hung out on Beale Street last night.  I went into BB King's place to listen to some blues.  They didn't have a blues band playing.  As a matter of fact, I found a disturbing lack of blues on Beale Street.  There were bands playing, but they weren't playing blues.  Some top 40 shit and some dance bands, but no blues bands.  I couldn't figure out what the hell was going on.  The band at BB's place started playing PURPLE RAIN and the place went nuts.  People were screaming and waving lighters and swaying their arms in the air.  I thought Prince himself had entered the building.  Apparently it was a regular thing.  Everyone was singing along and having a grand ole time.  I felt totally left out, like I had entered a private party that had started hours earlier and everyone was in on the secret but me.  I had no idea what was going on.  I mean it's Prince for God's sake.  Perhaps I'm old fashioned, but I like my blues delivered by old black men, wearing fedoras with sweat rolling off their brow and face dancing while they play.   That's not to say there aren't white boys who can play blues.  Clapton and Stevie Ray etc., but when Robert Johnson says to "come on up to my kitchen" you want to drop your stuff and see what the hell he wants.  When Sonny Boy Williamson tells you he knows a woman that can bring eyesight to the blind, you know he's met this chick.  When Muddy Waters tells you he's a man, by God, you don't doubt it.  The point is; you believe them.  I just don't buy a white kid named Chad playing blues while wearing a Green Day t-shirt.
 
6/9/05
 
Dear Diary-
 
It looks like summer is here.  Not officially of course, but the pool is open.  I love the pool.  My mom took us today.  She wasn't going to, but I guess she realized she couldn't trust us.  Probably a good thing too.  Even though she was there, my brother got in trouble for jumping in the pool during the adult swim.  He had to sit under the life guard tower for 15 minutes.  I told him not to, or maybe I dared him.  I can't remember.  If my mom asks, I told him no.  We played Marco Polo for almost 2 hours and then had hot dogs.  My friend Joey did a belly flop off the high dive and his stomach was all red for a long time.  It looked like it hurt.  I told him not to, or maybe I dared him.  I can't remember.  We got yelled at for throwing the nerf football around, and had to sit out for 15 minutes again.  That lifeguard was a dick. My other brother got into trouble after lunch when he was splashing some ladies sitting in deck chairs.  I told him not to, or maybe I dared him.  I can't remember.  My mom never knew any of this and took us for ice cream on the way home.  I love summer.
 
6/13/05
 
Dear Diary-
 
You are not going to believe this.  I hit another deer.  No shit.  My fourth one in 2 years.  I think my car has Lyme's Disease.  It has gotten totally out of control.  I hit this one in Council Bluff's, Iowa.  Right outside of downtown.  Are there no boundries anymore?  Are our cities being overrun?  Do these animals who, apparently, are the stupidest animals on the planet, have no regard for "human's space?"   Deer in downtown?  What's next?  Squirrels?  Possum?  Where does it all stop?  When do we say "enough?"  When do these imbecilic critters understand that the lights coming this way on the highway are DANGEROUS?  They will kill you, the lights...they are death.  Why isn't the word being spread amongst the animals?  Don't they have any memory at all?  Have they not seen their friends and acquaintances splattered all over the tarmac?  Don't they get it?  Is there any way I can ask another question?  Question marks are not easy to type. You have to use the pinky finger and shift button.  I can never do it without looking, so why do I do it?  Who knows?
 
The ironic thing about this deer collision? This one broke off my deer whistle.  Ha ha, very funny.  Destroy the one weapon I have against attack.  The deer whistle, what a joke.  When I first got those things, it says on the back that it emits a high pitch frequency sound that only animals can hear.  Yes, they can hear this high frequency whistle, but can't hear my horn or see my lights or hear my car or the music blaring from it.  Yes, yes indeed.  What a brilliant concept.   I may just mount a truck horn on the roof of my car and blast that thing every 20 seconds. 
AAAAAOOOOOOOGGGGGAAAAAAHHHHH. That would be cool.  A little annoying for sure, but cool.  Or maybe I'll mount some Uzi's on the fenders and randomly spray the sides of the road with automatic weapons fire.  That should do it.  Oh, I may snag the occasional human, but they shouldn't be standing on the side of the highway in the first place.  I might actually start a grass roots movement to encourage every hunter to grab his wife or girlfriend, grab the kids and their friends, find as many people as you can, arm yourselves heavily, and to quote Arlo Guthrie "kill, kill, kill."  Reduce the deer population to the ones we'll keep to put in the zoo.  The rest of them have to go.  It's time.  We've put up with the suicidal tendencies of these fools long enough.  If they're so anxious to meet the deer God, let's help them on the way.  I personally can't risk hitting another one.  I've survived four of them, I may not make it through another.
 
6/17/05
 
Dear Diary-
 
Looking at my entry from the other day.  I seemed a little angry.  Guess what?  IT HASN'T CHANGED.  I've had a couple of women ask me if I could be that cruel to something so cute.  The answer is yes.  I could be.  I've been pushed that far.  As a matter of fact on my way to Huntington West Virginia, I saw one standing on the side of the road, so I got out and beat him to death with a golf club.  Was that wrong?  I hope not. It didn't feel wrong.  How do like that?  Hurts doesn't it? Do you see what you get when you mess with me?  Do you see?  Do you see? Felt?  See?  Dumbass. I'm just saving you from dying on the road and taking a human with you.  I'm no fool though, I hauled it into the woods and buried him with a layer of lime.  I mean, I'm no idiot.  You've got to cover your tracks, I don't want Grissom and his CSI's running me down.  Deer are cute, so cute and fuzzy and Bambi like, right up until the point their innards are splattered all over my windshield, or windscreen if you're English.  Not so cute then.  Cleaning up deer guts is no picnic either.  Especially if you have a sensitive gag reflex.  I'm gagging and choking and gurgling throughout the cleaning experience.  What a pleasant evening.  I hope all the deer out there have a pleasant evening too, right up until someone shoots them through the heart.
 
6/25/05
 
Dear Diary-
 
Wow.  I went out last night to have a couple of toddies with a buddy.  We went to this little tavern to watch the band and about 11 o'clock these three transvestites came in.  The problem as I saw it was that they weren't very good ones.  Is that even possible?  Can you be a crappy tranny?  I think so.  These guys didn't look like girls at all.  They looked like guys dressed up as girls.  I lived in LA for five years and I've seen good cross dressers.  Sometimes it's hard to tell, they're that good.  Not these dudes.  One of them was about 6'4" and weighed about 240.  Looked like a linebacker.  A linebacker wearing a dress, makeup and a wig.  It looked like a frat party prank gone bad.  I must admit, they all did a pretty good job with the makeup, but there was no way to hide the masculinity.  They all had their little drinks and were dancing away.  One guy held his dress in his hands and was flipping it all over, like he was at a hoedown.  It was hilarious.  There's almost nothing funnier than watch a man trying to walk in heels.  That little shuffle, shuffle as they try to keep from toppling over.  I don't really get the cross dressing thing.  Oh, sure nylons feel sexy, which by the way, is just between us my dear diary, but the whole nine yards?  A little much.  I can't even imagine how much time these guys spent putting their faces on.  Not to mention the shaving.  Silky smooth legs, each one of them.  Even shaved the pits.  Now, that's dedication. The dancing was adorable as well.  They danced like guys, which is even funnier.  Just a couple of big boys dressed like girls and dancing like guys.  Too much.  We all had a good time and went home happy. 
 
7/6/05
 
Dear Diary-
 
Goodness, gracious, we made it through another 4th of July without anyone blowing off a finger, or two.  Those were great 4th of July's weren't they?  Always ending in some kind of tragedy?  There always seemed to be someone getting hurt on the 4th.  Maybe it was because we were kids and we were handling explosives.  Well, maybe not EXPLOSIVES, but they could take a young uns' digit off.  Bottle rocket fights were always good for a chuckle.  A chuckle or a damn good scare.   There is a certain level of adreneline rush that courses through those ten year old bones when a bottle rocket zips past your head close enough for you to feel heat.  Whew, that was close.  Everyone tries to duck or take cover, but when you come up, you can tell who had a close call by the size of their eyes.  The wider the eyes, the closer the call.  If one goes off near your face, it will burn you.  No shit.  An ear proximity detonation will give a good ringing sensation for a few days.  Bottle rockets were notoriously hard to aim.  We used empty Christmas paper wrapping tubes.  That way, you could "reach out" for your target.  All the better for making contact.  If you throw them, you never knew where they were going.  Most of time you would find out where they were going when some guy would come out with a handful of bottle rocket sticks that keep falling in his yard, and wants to know if we want him to call our parents.  Uh, Duh.  Then we'd fire a couple his way and do some high tailing it out of there.  Usually, after someone gets hit by a bottle rocket, they quit.  I guess the momentary blindness freaks some kids out.  Now we've outnumbered them!  Let's go in for the kill.  We'll each take three, light them and attack.  Nothing funnier than seeing four kids chased by five kids, all with lit bottle rockets in their hands.  Good times.
 
We also had acess to M-80's.  They were supposed to be like 1/8 of a stick of dynamite.  I doubt that, but they could do some damage.  I remember the peanut jar incident.  An M-80 will spray a 30 yard radius with a wall of shattered glass.  You best be hiding when this thing goes off.  We did it once in the Rhea's driveway just as their mom came out the front door.  I don't think I've seen terror and anger put together so eloquently, or so quickly before.  That was one scared, pissed off lady.  I think she may have even caught a couple of shards in the leg.  The Rhea boys didn't get to play with us after that.  Oh relax toots, it's the 4th of July.
 
Gasoline came in handy on the 4th too.  I guess it wasn't enough to blow things up, we had to burn too.  Burn baby, burn.  We used to take our model cars, helicopters, planes etc., soak them in gasoline and fire bottle rockets at them.  Or, maybe throw some firecrackers at them.  Right there on the package of firecrackers it says "Place on ground, light and get away, do not hold in hand" um, OK, sure.  Apparently they don't know whose playing with these things.  Throwing firecrackers was the only way to do it.  Walking around with a punk hanging out of your mouth and a grocery bag full of Black Cats.  It was the beginning of a beautiful day.  Walking around, making noise and blowing shit up.  How great is our life? Don't hold in hand?  Surely you jest.
 
Once a firecracker or bottle rocket goes off near a gasoline soaked plastic model, it makes a pretty good whoosh.  If you can hit a puddle of gas, it's fun.  Don't stand too close though.  Something else, don't do it next to the garage, in the dry grass, during a drought. Lesson learned.
 
7/13/05
 
Dear Diary-
 
I played in the Funny Bone Golf Tourney the other day.  It was a blast.  We got to play in the rain.  I like that.  All our lives we're told "come in out of the rain."
No, I don't want to.  I like playing in the rain.  The best times we had playing football as a kid, were in the rain.  So, as an adult, sometimes, by God, I want to play in the rain.  Afterwards of course, you're miserable.  Every thing is soaked, that damp, warm smell is settling in and I have no dry clothes.  I feel cold, clammy and dank.  What the hell was I thinking?  Don't I have enough sense to come in out of the rain?  Didn't all that training pay off?  Have I learned nothing in my slowly advancing years?  Apparently not.
 
We ended up shooting -8, which was good for a tie for 20th.  No comment.  The highlight was, we got to play with Hall of Fame footballer, Jackie Smith.  It was pretty cool.  We didn't end up using any of Jackie's shots, but it was great playing with someone of that stature.  My first.  I mean I played with Ray Romano, but that was before anyone knew who he was.  I played with Lewis Black too, but again, before. There was also something strangely satisfying in watching a Hall of Fame football player walking through the brush looking for his golf ball.
 
7/20/05
 
Dear Diary-
 
I hope you're having a good summer.  I love summer.  July especially.  Not only do we get the 4th, but it's my birthday month.  Yes, I know you know, but sometimes I like to see it in print.  I played in the Bob and Tom golf tournament on Monday, and we had a blast.  We didn't win this tournament either.  I played with a guy named Keith, his daughter and his parents.  We knew we weren't going to win before we teed off.  His parents were adorable, had to be in their 70's and  played golf like all seniors do.  Hit it down the middle 45 yards.  Everytime.  It doesn't matter if they use a pitching wedge or a 3 wood, it's going 45 yards right down the middle.  Hilarious. 
 
G.W. appointed a new Supreme Court Justice this week.  He nominated a rich white guy.  Hmm, that's odd.  What were the chances?  I don't want to get into a whole political thing here because I hate politics and all those involved in it, but come on.  A woman retired, so maybe, just maybe, you should replace her with, oh, I don't know...how about a woman?  Just to keep things a little in check.  Ugh.  Politicians and lawyers.  Have any two groups done more damage to a society as a whole then those two?  I think not.  The whole lawsuit thing is ridiculous.  Recently a little 8 year old girl, in Florida I believe, was being harrassed and chased around by a group of boys, so she threw a rock at one of them and now she's being charged with felony assault.  That's right, they're charging her with a crime insted of giving her a medal.   How out of control is that?  You can be sure some lawyer will try and file a suit against someone.  Someone will be sued because kids were being kids.  Maybe the boys should just say "lesson learned" and move on with the day. 
We should just start over.  The whole thing.  Just start over.  All new politicians and new lawyers, wipe the slate clean before it's too late.  Before someone tries to sue because their coffee is too hot, or before someone tries to sue McDonald's for making her kids fat, or someone tries to sue the government because he doesn't want his daughter to say "God" during the pledge of allegiance, or before we have our senators and congressmen not living off Social Security when they retire, but raking in thousands and thousands of American tax dollars, untaxed.  Yes, we should start over before any of this happens.
 
7/23/05
 
Dear Diary-
 
Well that was quite a little tirade you went on there.  What's up with that preacher man?  Come down off your pulpit my man.  But you know what?  Here's something else.  The London bombings.  Right now they're doing random searches of people entering the subways in New York.  Random, yes, randomness.  They have to do it...randomly, because you can't racially profile.  It's not politcally correct.  Under normal circumstances they're right.  But these aren't normal circumstances.  We've all seen the pictures of the 9/11 bombers, we seen pics of Osama and his men, pics of the London bombers were shown globally.  I can't be the only one who sees a resemblance in the guys.  Am I?  Is it just me that sees that ALL these guys are from the Mid East?  I don't mean 80 or 90%,  I mean ALL of them.  I didn't see one pic of a white guy or a black guy or an asian guy or a mexican guy.  Did you?  Well, did you?  No, you didn't.  There wasn't one Ed or Tyrone, there wasn't one Sally or Shanelle, there wasn't a Kwan Lee or one Paco.  Not one.  I realize the whole world is extra sensitive now, for whatever reason, we've become a nation of pussies, "we don't want to offend anyone."  Boo hoo.  You can't please everyone.  Trust me.  No matter what you do or what you say, somewhere, there's someone that's offended by it.  We have a pretty good idea of where most of terrorists are coming from so quit looking through grandma's bag and get a clue.  I know it would suck to be Arabic in countries that are being terrorized, and being under suspicion all the time, but if it was white guys in their forties doing the bombings, I'd understand if you want to look through my bag.
 
8/5/05
 
Dear Diary-
 
It's hot outside.  Has been.  They're calling it a heat wave.  The heat index today was 125 degrees.  That's pretty hot for St. Louis.  I was in Vegas last year and it was 115 for the entire week.  "It's a dry heat,"  in Vegas, yes, it is a dry heat.  You can't say that about the midwest heat.  It is a lot of things, but dry isn't one of them.  It's wet, very, very wet.  The humidity wraps you in a blanket of hot dampness that really has to be experienced.  It's hard to describe the feeling of breathing through a wet diaper.  Which, by the way, I try never to do.  It is an interesting feeling to be sweaty from drying off after a shower.  Wait a minute, didn't I just take a shower?  Why am I sweating? I feel clean, but am I? Has the sweat made me filthy?  What should I do?  Shall I retake my shower?  Would that help?  Or will I just get sweaty again from drying off?  Is this some kind of weirded out catch 22?  No.  I'm just going to stay the course, I'll pay the piper.  I am not going to take another shower and you can't make me.  I am clean.  At least until I go outside.
 
8/16/05
 
Dear Diary-
 
Wow.  What a day.  My brother and I had to clean the gutters of the house.  Not a big deal I guess.  Not a big deal until you have to climb 30 feet of ladder to reach the gutters.  Granted, 30 feet may not seem like a great distance, unless you fall.  Then it is quite a distance indeed.  My brother doesn't like heights, so I did the climbing.  Again, it was close to 100* outside, comfy.  Since I could only reach out about 3 feet on either side of the ladder, I had to climb up, clean, climb down, move ladder, repeat.  Keep in mind the climbing was done with a hose in one hand and a broom handle in the other.  After about five moves, I think I've found a better way to do this.  Climb on the roof and clean from the top.  Seemed like a good idea at the time.  I tie off the hose, lay the broom handle on the roof and climb over the top rung of the ladder.  As soon as a turn around, I realize I may have made a huge mistake.  The roof is way too steep to work on, which is when I remembered last year's attempt to do this job.  I got on the roof and said, "this is way too steep."  I immediately squat down to think over my options.  I have a feeling of uneasiness come over me.  I'm way to high up, no good traction and nothing to grab on to.  That's when I realize that I'm afraid.  It wasn't a great fear, but it was fear nonetheless.  It's been a long time since I felt fear.  It was scary.  Can you be scared of fear? I'm not sure, but I was, sho' nuff.  I was only up 30 feet, but I figured that was enough to break my neck.  Fear, what a concept.  I wasn't sure what my next move was.  I didn't want to move in any direction, but quickly determined that no one is coming to get me.  I'll have to do this myself.  I squatted up on that roof for at least five minutes trying to figure out what to do.  How to get back on the ladder backwards.  I put my hands down on the roof to slide closer to the edge and that's when I found out that the roof has been heated to somewhere in the neighborhood of 1000 degrees.  Hmm, how does a black roof get so hot in the sun?  It only takes about 10 seconds for me to understand that my palms have been burned.  Not blister burned, but burned so it hurts.  Now, I'm in a pickle, the hose is still running so it's making the roof in front of the ladder slippery, the sweat running off me is making me slippery, I have nothing to grab on to and my palms are burned.  I don't think crying is going to help.  I need to make a decision and that decision is to get the hell off the roof.  Now, how do I go about it?  I'm not going to stand up for fear of going over the edge.  So I've got to do all my manuevering from the squat position, got to keep a low center of gravity.  I put my hands down on the roof, and reburn my palms.  I get to a position that is a semi-squat, semi-lean and swing a leg over the top of the ladder.  This is the most precarious position, half on the roof, half on the ladder, I look down and my brother's gone.  Well, who the hell is holding the ladder?  God?  Where the hell is my support system?  Oh, he's off moving the sprinklers.  Bottom line?  I learned my lesson and won't go on the roof again.  I hope my palms heal.
 
8/24/05
 
Dear Diary-
 
It happened!  I got my new golf clubs today.  Oh glorious legends of the past.  It was my own little Christmas.  I tore into them and started swinging.  Now I know why you're always told "don't swing golf clubs in the house."  I'm off to the lamp store.
 
9/2/05
 
Dear Diary-
 
It's been a goodly time since we've spoken.  Forgive me.   There hasn't really been much going on.  I'm in Knoxville and just got back from paying $3.25 for a gallon of gas.  Apparently Katrina has begun to take it's toll.  It's weird, standing there watching those digital numbers rolling up and saying F**K YOU  each time another dollar turns over.  Wow.  The hotel is full of evacuees and you just want give them some money.  I didn't, but I wanted to.  I wasn't sure who was an evacuee and who wasn't, plus, it's going to cost me over $100 in gas to get home.  Maybe I'll by a bicycle.  I wonder how that would be?  Cruising through the Smokey Mountains in December. 
 
9/12/05
 
Dear Diary-
 
I just got back from Baton Rouge, LA.  Holy moly.  They had 200,000 evacuees in town.  It was a complete mess.  Gridlock enveloped the entire town.  I know everyone is supposed to show patience in this time of trouble, but damn.  GET THE HELL OUT OF THE WAY!  If you're going to drive, look at a map, there is more than one street in town.  I stayed with Steve, the security guard at the club.  There was no room at the inn.  Just like baby Jesus, they had no place for me to stay. It's good to be home. 
 
9/27/05
 
Dear Diary-
 
I'm still home.  Been home for 2 weeks, and in that 2 weeks, I've been working in the yard.  My brother wants to sell the house and make us both homeless, and the yard still needs grass.  I've tried.  I've really tried, but it's hard for grass to take root in bedrock.  You can't get more than in inch down before hitting rock.  I tried letting the grass that has grown, grow tall and then just lay it over, you know, like a comb over.  But it looked stupid.  It looked a bunch of badly done crop circles all over the yard.  I wonder if minoxidil would work?  Hmm.
 
10/1/05
 
Dear Diary-
 
Wow, what a day.  Phil and I tried to dig post holes for the deck we're building.  That's right, we're building a deck.  At least that's the plan for now.  We rented a hole digger.  It's about five feet tall with four handles on it.  It's gas powered and has a four foot long drill bit on it that was guaranteed to "go right through that rock."  We got down about six inches when we hit our first rock, it locked up the drill and dislocated both of our shoulders while flinging us into the side of the house.  Good plan.  That was it for the post hole digging.  We got a guy coming out tomorrow with a bobcat.
 
10/11/05
 
Dear Diary-
 
I just got back from Myrtle Beach.  150 golf courses within 30 miles.  Heaven for a golfer.  I was going to tear it up.  Got into town on Tuesday,  I was going to play Wed, Thur, Fri, Sat and Sunday.  I had big doings planned, things were happening.  I was happening.  I was going to play some golf.  I played on Wednesday.  On the way home it started to mist, then it started to sprinkle, then it was on to a drizzle, by the time I got back to the condo, I was in a biblical deluge.  It was hurricane rain.  And it was coming down on my parade.  That's fine, I think to myself, I can still play in the rain.  I'm not going to let a little tropical storm/hurricane stop me from hitting some golfs.  I'm in Myrtle Beach for the love of Mike, and you're telling me I can't play golf because of the rain?  I say you're full of caca.  Oh...I'm playing. 
     Thursday I awake, excited, anticipatory.  I'm going to pick out an outfit, powder up and play some golf.  I open the curtain to gaze upon the earth and I see wetness, major wetness.  Wetness that was like complete and total wetness.  It was wet, and that wet had combined it self with other areas that were wet and together, they formed wetness.  Apparently, it hadn't stopped raining.  OK, perhaps we will play tomorrow,  by tomorrow the wetness will be gone and we can play,  it is, after all, Myrtle Beach. 
     Friday was wet.
     Saturday was wet.
     It hasn't stopped raining since Wednesday afternoon.  This is madness, madness I tell you.  How can it still be raining?  Am I a submariner?  How can I function if all this wetness surrounds my every move, my every thought, my very existence.  OK fine, you win.  I won't play golf in Myrtle Beach.  Is that what you want?  Is it?  I won't play.  It's as simple as that.   It doesn't matter anyway, I'm leaving.  I left on Sunday.  It was 70 and sunny.  Ha ha.  You got me Wilma, you got me.
 
10/18/05
 
Dear Diary-
 
Home again, bloody el.  Went to the Rams/Colts Monday Night game.  I've been to road games before.  I wear my Rams stuff, but I keep a low profile.  I always get some cat calls, but I keep moving, no sense in egging on the enemy.  When in hostile territory, you must always be thinking, always be on your toes.  Keep your eyes peeled for the blind side, keep your flanks covered, keep gliding, moving, sliding through the crowd.  You don't have to keep your guard up, but you can't let it down either.  OK.  Moving on.
 
The Rams started off like gangbusters, 17-0 in the first quarter.  Nine minutes of old time Rams football.  Well, maybe not old time, more like turn of century time.  Anywho... I did my cheering when the Rams did well.  I did it quickly and succinctly, don't want to antagonize anyone.  Plus, I know the Rams, it can fall apart quickly, don't want to get to cocky.  Then Bulger goes down and things sour quickly.  The Colts come back with a vengence.  Each time the Colts have the ball, I don't make any noise, it is my custom, but it won't do any good.  One guy making noise isn't very effective in a domed stadium.  Then, the Colts get near the end zone, where I happen to be sitting.   As Manning approaches the center, I try and do my part and give up some whistling.  Try to disturb the snap count, being a fan, me, by myself, making noise inside a domed stadium.  Well, you'd think I got up and took a dump on the stairs.  "Uncool man," "That's really rude," "That's uncalled for,"  are the responses I received.  "Are you people shitting me?"  I knew the game was slipping away from the Rams, and I was feeling a little bit snotty.  You can get that way if you're team is doing poorly,  you shouldn't, but I do sometimes.  I was feeling a little froggy, but being outnumbered, I couldn't do much.  Discrection is a trait usually learned the hard way.  I was just totally apalled.  One guy whistling, and these fools lose their minds.  One guy said if I did it again, he was going to call security.  I felt like popping him one, you know, give him a real reason to call security.   What a goofball.  Anyway, the Rams lost and I kept my mouth shut.  
 
10/20/05
 
Dear Diary-
 
I went to game six of the NLCS last night.  It turned out to be the last game at Busch Stadium.  We didn't even think about the fact that it could be the last game ever played there.  After game five, when Pujols hit the homer in the top of the ninth, we knew the Cards would win games six and seven.  We knew.  We knew it in our hearts that we were going to the World Series, and this time by God, we were going to win.  We knew it, we just knew it.  Turns out; we didn't know shit.  Somewhere around the seventh inning, I think it dawned on everyone that this could be it.  If the Cardinals lose tonight, that's it.  This is the last game. We will never be in this stadium again.  It started to get quiet.  There was a whole lot of rubber necking going on.  People taking their last glimpses of the inside of Busch.  We had alot of good times in that place.  I won't go into a lot of detail, but there have been some great moments for the people of St. Louis in Busch Stadium.  For one thing, it's named after a brewery. 
     Interestingly enough, in appreciation of all the years 3 million + have gone to Busch Stadium to cheer on their beloved Cardinals, spent thousands and thousands of dollars of their hard earned money, and cheered them on EVERY time, but big boys in charge are building a new stadium with LESS seats than the old one.  Absolutely brilliant!  We love and appreciate you guys coming to the games...Unfortunately, not as many of you can come next year.  We have to make more room for the specialty suites.  Sorry.  I hoped the baseball bat we just shoved up your backside doesn't hurt, but we have to give the rich people nicer accomodations so they have somewhere to hang out after arriving late and leaving early.   OK, let's not get off on a tirade.  Don't get me started on the suits, we could be here all day.
     So it was the last game at Busch.  We stayed around for over an hour, just walking around...and looking for stuff to steal.  Hey, if the things going to turned to rubble, I'm going to take something.  I saw a guy with a screwdriver, trying to pry things off the wall.  Didn't work.  I took a cup holder.  Shoot me.  I did pay a price though.  They're made plastic and screwed in the seat back.  If you work it up and down enough, the plastic gets soft and you can break it.  As I was working through the last of it on the down push, it gave way and I slammed the bridge of my nose on the top of the seat.  I did it hard enough to see stars and it still hurts.  So, the stadium gave me a little slap for stealing.  I still got the cup holder though, so I guess I win.  Ha ha.  See?  I'm smarter than plastic.
 
11/25/05
 
Dear Diary-
Well, gobble, gobble.  Another Turkey Day has come and gone.  Wow.  All day long it's been Christmas music on the radio, oh whoa oh oh, on the radio.  Christmas music already.  I couldn't do it though.  It's too early.  I just can't get started on the whole Christmas spirit thing when I'm still full from Thanksgiving.  I guess it really doesn't matter that much, I mean Christmas decorations have been up since Halloween.  I remember when Christmas season was about two weeks long.   Ahh, the old days.
 
We had Thanksgiving at my brother's house.  We were missing a few people, but we had enough.  I really must be getting old, because that was the noisiest Thanksgiving I've ever experienced.  They've all been noisy, but this was out of control.  I repeatedly asked for everyone to "use their indoor voices", but I might as well been trying to hold back Katrina with my hands held up in front of me.  We have a tradition of playing board games after eating.  Seems like fun. This year however, we played Texas hold 'em.  That's right, apparently everyone has been watching the World Series of Poker and fancies themselves a card player.  So we played cards.  Eleven people trying to play poker.  For some reason, my mother put three decks of cards together,"because we have so many people."  I tried to tell her we didn't need that many, but I was ignored.  After several hands where seven people had full houses, we switched to the one deck format.  It hurts when you have a King, ten full house and lose to your fourteen year old niece who has Aces and tens, who just beat out your mom who had Kings and Queens.  The girls wanted to play with wild cards.  What?  No way, we're not playing with wild cards.  I'm not going to have four Aces lose out to five Aces.  Too much heartbreak.  Madness.  Utter madness. 
 
The game started out quietly enough, little conversations going on, people speaking to their neighbors.  That means of course, that not everyone is paying attention.  Which also means you hear a lot of, "Oh, it's my turn?" or, "how much is it," or "who's in," or "where's Jimmy," or "I've got to pee," or "who wants a beer?" When alcohol is involved it just fuels the fire.  Things are starting to get louder and louder.  Other people are being loud so that you have to talk louder to be heard over the other loudness.  The decibel level increases until you're literally yelling at the top of your voice to speak to the person next to you.  Six different conversations going on at full loudness.  The levels are definitely turned up to 11.  My brother Jimmy tried to set a buy in level, but if people ran out of money, they either stole more from some one elses pile, or just reached into the bowl of change sitting on the floor.  Not very disciplined.  I didn't really notice how loud these people were until I went to the bathroom. I'm another room and it sounded like there were forty people in there.  I walked out and these people are all screaming at the top of their lungs, just discussing everyday events at full tilt.  I've had easier times communicating at rock concerts.   It was hilarious.  Slowly people get tired to trying to pay attention to the cards and wander off, never to return to the game.  I'm not sure what exactly happens, no one really quits, it just peters out until there's only two people left at the table going "where'd everyone go?"   I guess screaming that loud is exhausting.  It was a fun day and I had pie three times.  Any day you can eat pie three times in one day, is a good day.
 
12/4/05
 
Dear Diary-
 
I reached my stress level yesterday.  It wasn't pleasant.  I did a corporate gig in North Central Nebraska.  I did a similiar one two years ago with the same result and remember swearing that I wouldn't do this again.  It starts off innocently enough.  The accepantace of a private gig for a Christmas party.
 
A word here.  These gigs are "Christmas parties"  that's what the companies call them.  I can't believe the shit that's going on with calling Christmas, "Christmas."  It is Christmas.  It always has been. If you don't want to celebrate it, then fine.  Don't.   But don't rain on my parade.  There was a big to do in Washington this year about calling the Christmas tree a "holiday tree."  They are actually spending time and money on this.  No wonder we're trillions of dollars in debt.  
 
"Whoa big fella"
 
"What?"
 
"Slow down, you're getting off on a tangent, you started out telling us about the Nebraska gig and now, you're going off about government spending, let's just stick with the topic"
 
"No."
 
Like that thing last year.  Some high school kid in Utah was killed while pole vaulting.  The government approved a $20 million dollar budget for a study on how to make pole vaulting safer.  Hey, here's an idea, why don't you make them stop running with a long pointy stick?  Huh?  It seems like that would solve the problem.  Morons.   There are a lot of morons in charge of things in this country.  I don't get why we have to change our shit for new people.  Isn't part of coming to a new country adapting to the ways of the people and customs that were here?  Not the other way around.  
Americans are used to doing things our way, quit trying to change it, you don't have to celebrate Christmas, but don't try and change the way we do our thing.  Anywho...back to our tale.
 
I take the gig.  Which means I fly to Omaha, rent a car and drive to the gig.  Under normal circumstances, it's no big deal.  But that night it snows, my flight is at one, so I hit the road at 5 a.m.  That gives me seven hours to go 200 miles.  Which, you would think would be more than enough time, enough time even to stop and see a broadway show or two.  I dropped off the car at 12:30.  I was rather whacked.  The biggest problem with snow storms in Nebraska is, there are only 73 trees in the entire state, so there's nothing to break up the wind.  It just blows sheets of snow across the road in walls of white death.  White outs.  Pure white outs that last 25-30 seconds.   That might not seem like any length of time, but when you can't see anything but white, it seems like time indeed.  I also add that each time a semi passes, the same thing occurs.  And many trucks pass, they have no fear, either that or no common sense.  There are moments of joy and justice that do happen.  Like when some knuckle head in his SUV blows by like the cat's meow, like the laws of bad weather don't apply to him, laws of physics have been put aside so this nimrod can drive way faster than weather conditions allow.  Then, two miles down the road you come upon this same guy, upside down in the ditch.  You just want to point and go "ah ha, I told you, you were driving too fast, you got what you deserved."  But I eventually got to the airport and got home.  I'm done with Nebraska in December though.  Next time, the people can come to me.  Fa la la la.
 
12/20/05
 
Dear Diary-
 
"What's it been?  A couple of weeks?"
"More like 16 days"
"Well, that's close to a couple of weeks"
"What ever, what do you want?"
"I'm ready to tell you, if I may be so bold"
"You may"
"Thank you"
"Think nothing of it"
"No, seriously, I appreciate your kindness"
"And I appreciate you appreciating my kindness"
"Yes, it's good to be appreciated, isn't it?"
"Oh indeed, someone who appreciates appreciation is a person to be appreciated indeed"
"OK then, let's get to it"
 
I went to the last Rams home game last Sunday.  I would like to say there was energy in the stadium. I would like to say the crowd was in a frenzy. I would like to say the anticipation was high for the Rams meeting of the 49'ers, our cursed division rivals who were 2-12. I would like to say we were ready to put an ass kickin' on the boys from San Fran.  What I can say is that doing the wave in the 4th quarter was the highlight of the game.  The wave, the freakin' wave.  When was the last time we did the wave?  I honestly can't remember.  It seems like the stupidest thing doesn't it?  But I love it.  I don't know why, I was actually giggling when it came around to our section.  Giggling, like a little school girl.  I couldn't wait for it to come back around.  "Hurry, hurry Mr. Wave, I want to do it again."  I want to stand up in a group and go "whoooooo."  I don't know why I was enjoying it so much.  I think I was just amused that a stadium full of people were so bored by the football being played, they created their own entertainment.  When the wave is going on, you're not really paying attention to the game, you're too busy concentrating on timing your stand correctly.  The wave takes some focus.  Get up too soon, you're all by yourself and look like a fool.  Get up too late and you're all by yourself and look like a fool.  So...the wave was the highlight and the Rams lost.  The best thing about this season, is that it's now over.  Praise Jesus.  Let the healing begin.