We Terrorize As We Shoot The Bird

Portable System 7.5.3

I’m closing the eSIP voting page at 5pm CST on Thursday, March 8th. Results will be up the following Wednesday.

That picture is Apple’s System 7.5.3 running MacPaint on an emulated Macintosh Plus computer running on my iPod shuffle. If you want to, then you can do what I did.

This was going to be a post about the Aqua Teen scare a month ago. What had started as a publicity stunt turned into a terror alert, as citizens of Boston called police and bomb squads over some blinking LED cartoon characters. When I was going to research and write this, I pasted a link to a SignOnSanDiego.com write up of it. I was going to try to tie the whole thing to Philly cutting trans fats and Anna Nicole Smith’s death.

No dice.

My message to you guys is to write when you feel like it. Even if you only marginally feel like it, get out your whatever and write. Just do it.

This weekend was one of SNOW! Holy buckets. I had an idea for a Newsbleep that would actually be fake reporting about a real event as it happened. Then I decided to not film until Saturday, and the snow had stopped, and then it started melting. I’m not sure if I’ll finish writing the episode and shoot it anyway (as per Holli’s suggestion that it’d be funny to talk about a blizzard when the snow is all melting away) or just wait until it snows again or scrap it.

We also went on a mini Christopher Guest marathon. We watched This Is Spinal Tap, Waiting for Guffman, and A Mighty Wind, with For Your Consideration soon. I didn’t realize Eugene Levy was such a writer. Finally, last night, we watched The Departed, and both enjoyed it. Did it deserve an Oscar for Best Director? I’m not sure.

This weekend we’ll probably be heading to Big Stone City for whammy kicks and guitar giggles. Bring your rocking face or get your face rocked off!

P.S. Dan’s birthday was a good day for me, too. I got presents like a clever t-shirt and The Prestige.

I.O.U. One Post

Dan's Good Time Juice

Those who know my brother and I also know that as much divides us as unites us. In one particular area, “hanging out”, Bryce and I have very different behaviors. I’ve never really been a “hanger-outer”, as they say. I don’t know if it was my generally introverted demeanor as a child or the fact that my parents beat me when I asked if friends could come over, but something caused me to never really think of having people over. Sure, we had movie nights and stuff, but I never went to people’s houses uninvited. Bryce, on the other hand, has always been one to call everyone in his phone and invite them over, even if it’s just to watch home videos.

Having said that, this past weekend and week have been quite a “hang-y-out-y” time for me. Dan Rausch came up for the weekend, so Holli, David, and I all hung out all weekend. We found time to make a Musebleep, which has already been posted, and I’m working on putting together the Newsbleep we shot. I think, from now on, Newsbleeps will be a Friday posting, with Musebleeps continuing to be a Wednesday posting. It’ll give me more time during the week because I almost always film on the weekends.

Some of the non-bleepy things we did was make enough spaghetti to feed the last supper (as part of an altogether fairly complicated meal), watch Kiss Kiss Bang Bang (a very good, funny movie), get ice cream and Jones soda at 10 (or so) at night, church, China Moon, 2nd Street Diner, and much much more. Well, actually, not much more. It was a good weekend. Also, Dan and I “talked shop” about the family website.

I uploaded some videos that didn’t make it into the Newsbleep: How to Save a Life, Hallways, and My Room. I also uploaded some photos to that effect. Check out Newsbleep 005: Daily Horrors photoset.

Then, on Monday, Holly and Bob came over originally to carve pumpkins, but there are no pumpkins anymore, so we sat and watched Shaun of the Dead instead. Awesome movie, and both the girls had to keep covering their eyes (even though it’s a relatively tame Zombie Movie). Holly and Bob have invited Holli and I to a lot of things, but we haven’t reciprocated nearly enough, hence the Monday night hang-out.

Tuesday was Halloween. I dressed as “Miles, circa Yesterday”. Mainly because I still had some Host filming to do, and wanted to use the same costume, but also because I’m not that creative. Holli dressed as Pam Beasley, and she did a very good job, even though it sounded like I wasn’t impressed at the time.

Wednesday, last night, was Recycled Percussion, a “junk rock” Stomp-ish percussion trio supported by DJ Dirty Soul. They were good. Normally, I wouldn’t go to something like this, because I’m not a student anymore, but Holli convinced me. I paid the $5 and got tons of bootleg video and photos, and afterwards I bought a DVD from them and they all autographed it. I made one uber video called Recycled Percussion that has all the short videos I took put together. Photos are in the Recycled Percussion – 1 Nov 06 photoset.

Wednesday was also the start of my new novel. If you listened to the Musebleep, then you heard me mention it. I’m going to try the National Novel Writing Month challenge again. I’m off to a good start. To be on target, I have to write 1,667 words a day, and I exceeded that yesterday. Today might be a little less writing because I’m writing this post, ain’t I? Anyway, it’s called “Terry, The Funniest, Smartest Turtle, Or: The Majesty and Mockery of Music’s Greatest Band”. It’s a Humor & Satire novel, and I’m going to (with some help, most likely) narrate parts of the book during the month of November on Musebleep. It’s based on and cowritten with Danny Foster, the creator and front man for the British experimental rock band YasBM. And, if you’re lucky, I’ll play some of their music after the show, too. The band is old, and I don’t like announcing my fandom (they’re not very popular), but I thought theirs was the perfect story to tell. And, Danny also thought it should be a children’s book.

Anyway, to end with a question, as to get conversational comments, what did you guys dress up for and do for Halloween?

Accidental Hijynx

Water

Water!
Water!, originally uploaded by m!les.

So, Holli came over to do a quiz for Art History, and she goes into the bathroom. I then hear, “Oh! Hunny! I don’t know what I did!” Water was gushing everywhere. Holli had gone in to wash her hands, and it just happened to be the last movement needed to break the facet from the pipe. A couple phone calls, a visit from Justin Nowick, and 4 inches of standing water later, all my towels were wet and the plumbers were scheduled to come the next morning. Of course, there are pictures.

Bytes in Brandon Valley

Let's Go!
Let’s Go!, originally uploaded by m!les.

They Bytes was asked to perform (with a message) to a college prep course. We met Mike down there, and the six of us did three games, a sketch (a skit with a large emphasis on improv and only an outline of events) about the dangers of binge drinking (plus a conversation), and some words about college life. It was toodles. I got some pictures.

Easter

Easter Dinner
Easter Dinner, originally uploaded by m!les.

I went home for Easter, and Holli went home for Easter. This year’s Easter was pretty laid back. We plaid guitar at church, and we made Ben’s spicy beans (These beans are so spicy that I cried the first time I ate them. I cried like a girl ignored at prom). We did bowling, too, which was nice. We played the crazy kind of Balderdash (David’s version). Then we had supper at Sue’s place and I brought Ben’s beans (The first time I ate these beans I cried. I cried like a Star Wars fan after Episode I). Then I went back to Madison. There are pictures.

Holli’s Birthday

Holli in her Birthday Suit
Holli in her Birthday Suit, originally uploaded by m!les.

Holli had her 20th birthday on the 15th. Unfortunately, we couldn’t celebrate until that Monday. So I gave her her presents: Adidas Moves for Women, markers, I wrote her a myth, a messenger bag (this present came days later, and I had to do a lot of sneaking to get her to go to her car for no reason and find it). You can read her post on the day. She was on duty for part of the time, but we headed down to Sioux Falls and ate at Ruby Tuesday (my first time ever – very very excellent), watched “Thank You For Smoking” (very funny and satirical), and got some Coldstone Ice Cream. I think she had a good day. Happy Birthday, Sweetie! Pictures are here.

Nightmare on Washington Street

Blank Stage
Blank Stage, originally uploaded by m!les.

Well, the curtain has closed on what is my final DSU production as a student. How did it go? Well, if you have to ask, then why should I tell you? Because that’s what I do. I tell.

We did 4 nights of the show. The show consisted of 15 Minutes (a monologue starring Adrienne Boese), The Actor’s Nightmare (a one-act starring: Ben Fox, Holli Gregg, Sara Harp, Monica Jacobsen, and Miles Rausch), and Comedy Bytes (improv starring: Mike Anderson, Ben Fox, Holli Gregg, Miles Rausch, Holly Smith, and Lisa Stien).

Friday

This was, by and large, our first rehearsal with lights. It’s a pity that it had to be a performance, too. The technical crew seemed less than thrilled to be there. It gave off a bad vibe, and I really didn’t like it. What added to problems was that Chris Zieg, our technical director, had to be back at work. See, he had chosen to use a two week vacation to construct a set and set and design lights and sounds for a play, but every vacation must come to an end, and his did the night we had our first performance.

According to memory, the play went pretty well. We had a decent turnout. Holli‘s parents and sister showed up. One problem we did have (and had every night afterward) was with a change I have where I go from standard accountant garb to Hamlet attire. This requires tights, which are just like they sound, and usually proved fairly difficult for me to get on in the short amount of time allotted for my change.

After Comedy Bytes, we stood in the entry way and waited for people to file by. We said goodbye to Holli’s parents and sister (who said they enjoyed the show). Then I bought a brownie, and we waited until 10 o’clock for our next Comedy Bytes show. 2 people showed up. Then they left. We cancelled the show, and then Holli and I went and got ice cream.

Saturday

My parents came to this one. It was a matinee performance. This one went well, too. I was feeling a little less energetic at this one. Holli and I did have Chinese for lunch, so that was nice. We tried something new with the costume change. This time I changed into tights and shorts, and then I rushed out on stage where Holli (who plays a stage manager in the play) helps me continue to get ready and berates me for wasting time. The play went pretty well. Mom said she was laughing so hard that she had tears in her eyes. The Comedy Bytes part went well, too. This crowd was a little quiet, and it was mostly relatives and some friends. It was also Picture Call, but Mom and Dad had to go, so Holli and I said goodbye to them, and took pictures, and went to mass, and then we went to Ben Fox’s place for some awesome ribs and beans and roulette and blackjack and horses. There’s a whole RIBS set on Flickr.

Sunday

Slept in! Lazy Sunday. Probably did some homework and relaxed. I can’t really recall.

Monday

Second to last show. I bought Holli flowers and hid them backstage and never even came close to hinting about them. This crowd was good. You can tell how good a crowd is going to be by how much they laugh at Adrienne’s monologue. The change on Monday night was blazing fast. We almost didn’t need to do the fake change on stage thing. There was a problem with me and my falling out of a garbage can. It wasn’t intentional, but I see how it could have been (I would do something like that). Holli did a good job of keeping character, but I saw Monica laughing (tsk tsk). Then, when they were pushing the executioner out, they almost ran into Holli and Monica. It was after this performance that the decision was made to switch the Private Lives wagon with the Executioner wagon as far as sides of the stage go.

Comedy Bytes went well. We had our normal 8ish showing. Then we had a break, during which I spent most of my time on the ground. We thought we would only get two people again, but the turnout was greater than that. We also didn’t have our tech crew (they all left except for Tiffany), so Sara Harp ran sound instead. She did a good job. Our second show was fairly dirty. I guess it wasn’t so much dirty as it was disappointingly immature. You’re only as good as the suggestions you get. I tried to filter as host, but there is only so much you can do.

Tuesday

The final performance. We switched platforms. The change didn’t go as well as it could. I really didn’t want to do it. I was tired and ready to be done. But I did it. I gave my all, and I gave my final performance. This crowd was very quiet. Probably the worst crowd we had, just in that they didn’t seem to find anything funny. Idiots. Anyway, I think we were all at our end. When we were finally finished, we tore the set apart. I took pictures and a video, even. Of course! To top it off, the audience mentioned “Chuck Norris” as an improv suggestion.

Hey. Remember when I said that Acting Is A Threat To My Health? Well, that holds true to this day.

  • Canker Sores
    • Mouth (one)
  • Abrasions
    • Right hand (one)
    • Left elbow (two)
    • Left arm (one)
    • Right knee (one)
    • Left knee (one – big one)
  • Bruises
    • Right arm (two)
    • Right hand (one)
    • Left arm (one)
    • Chest (one)
    • Right knee (one)
    • Left knee (two)
    • Left ankle (one)

All in all, I enjoyed it. It got a little frustrating, and I know I’m suffering from some sort of exhaustion, but I think I gave the best performance I could, and I hope the audiences enjoyed it. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to get it taped, so there’s no video record of the performances. One highlight (for me) was the inclusion of a sketch I wrote called “Happy 125 Years, DSU [redux]”. I had originally written a skit titled “Happy 125 Years, DSU” which was about the school bringing General Beadle back to life, as a zombie, to celebrate 125 years as an institution. The first plan was to perform it at the Spring Convocation, but it didn’t work out. Then we were going to perform it at our Spring Production, but time contraints didn’t allow for that, either. So, I wrote a largely improvised skit (a sketch) based on the same ideas, and we opened the show with it.

Be sure to check out the pictures from the shows on my Flickr account in a special Nightmare on Washington Street set. Also, I’ve uploaded some videos to Google Video. And now, back to my life.

The One Where m!les Lost All His Hair

Self-Portrait
Self-Portrait, originally uploaded by m!les.

I think I use the ! in my name to show just how excited I am about loving life. Okay. I couldn’t keep a straight face while typing that.
Notice anything in this picture? My hair is nearly all gone. How could this happen? We were just getting use to the beard thing. Well, here’s the story.

I went to trim my beard yesterday morning. On my trimmer I use a setting of 2 to trim my beard. This usually works pretty okay, but I think my trimmer is fairly cheap, so it creates some issues. For one, I get these weird feathered wings out where my jaw joins to my skull. No matter how many times, or how hard, I try trimming that area, it never works out. Another problem area is my mustache. It never seems to get trimmed down enough to how I like it. This was the case yesterday.

To remedy the problem, I set my trimmer to setting 1 and did just the mustache. Big mistake. Now I looked like I was wearing fake facial hair (and thought I was getting away with it), so I brought the whole damn thing down to setting 1. Bigger mistake. Now I looked homeless. I thought, what if I trim down my cheeks a little, make it a class, thin looking beard. Well, that might have worked except I wasn’t so expert at shaving down and my right side was missing a strange notch near my chin.

That’s it, I thought, and I shaved it all off. So, I’m clean shaven, again, in winter, again. At least it’s staying warm right now. With the suddenly missing jaw hair, I decided it was time to schedule a hair cut, too. You guys know my style – 1/4″ on the sides and 1/2″ on the top. So, all in all, I have so much less hair that I hardly have hair at all. However, eating supper with Holli and David, David came to the conclusion that sometimes your hair gets so long that it falls out. So, if you grow your hair out really long, you go bald. I know it sounds counter-intuitive, but it’s totally true.

So, be warned, the next time you see me, I might look way different. Don’t say anything; that’ll hurt my feelings. Just smile and be nice, and, if you can’t handle it, walk away slowly and never talk to me again.

A Comment on “God for Fun and Profit”

Woah. Ok. I now have some pretty heated comments on that last post, and I reckon a fight will start if I don’t say something.

The previous post was meant, in part, to be satire. Many people do not make a distinction between what is good to pray about and what is not good to pray about. When it comes to organized religion there are so many confusions from one person to another. Sometimes these confusions can create an all new religion. Sometimes they just make people fall for the tricks of those people who are in “religious power”.

I think it’s ridiculous some of the things that we are asked to pray for. A building project, a quilt project, a fundraiser. What? Pray for money, is what this says. If you pray to God then you will get money. Isn’t religion beyond money? You do need money to run a church, but you can have the same mass in an air conditioned, three story Church/Gym/Swimming Pool as you can under a tent, in the chilled wind, next to a lake.

Where is line drawn between necessity to spread the good word and greed for more space and more things? Who is it that draws that line? There are some prayers out there that are nothing short of propaganda, and that is a very dangerous line to cross. It’s the same sort of thing that made an entire nation back a Jew hater.

In a perfect world, only the most wise, sympathetic, pure of heart would be priests/pastors, bishops, cardinals, and popes. In a perfect world, the average believer would be able to speak intelligibly on their beliefs. There wouldn’t be confusion and dissention. Zelotism based on ignorance causes abortion center bombings and wars. It causes more confusion, more pain, and brings everyone further from the Truth.

Much to the contrary of what my parents may believe, this isn’t a bash against Catholicism. You guys take what I say too literally. At the bottom of the post it says “satire”, which is where you write something that sounds serious, but you mean it in a humourous manner which is meant to show the absurdity of the thing that you are, indeed, satirizing. I think organized prayer is a beautiful way for a body of people to talk to God. Too often, however, people don’t read what they are saying.

Prayer is a tool of worship, but it is a tool that is too often misused. That is all I was saying. As for ols’ comment, well, I have no control over him.

[ explain ]

So This Is Life

Hooo kids. My life has been one big, glowing ball of stress and nervousness. I have trouble eating; I have trouble sleeping. All I do is think about the situation. I fantasize about how I hope it will get better, and how I fear it will be worse. My thoughts, my actions, my mood is consumed by this thought. And I can fully blame it all on one person : John Harrington.

¿Que es John Harrington? John Harrington has been hailed as the “Bill Gates” of his time. He is the man personally responsible for constructing and designing the water closet. Water Closet is Brit Lang for toilet.

I hate my toilet.

Right now I don’t even want to SAY toilet, I am that angry. In our particular situation, our water closet companion has begun to wet himself. It started shortly after we got the house. We noticed that after we flushed, a peculiar wet stain would slowly creep out from underneath the base and cautiously make it’s way to the bathroom.

See, the good thing about carpet is that you can see exactly where the carpet soaked up the water. And if this had been linoleum, I probably would have slipped on the water and busted my head clean open. Oh, but I wouldn’t be dead. I’d just have an infection the rest of my life from the sewage water that entered my fractured skull as I lay there near-death. I could still lead a productive life, but I’d always hear people saying, “Why do you use that blue toilet bowl stuff in your hair?”

I hate those people.

It’s not enough for the Porcelain Chum to soak everything in his juices. He has to make sure things smell, too. Right now our bathroom is a step above smelling like a bum box, but it’s not far off. Actually, litter box is closer to the truth. The toilet leaks cat urine.

I hate cat piss. To sum up – I hate my toilet. I hate those people. I hate cat piss. They seem to do that, though. You buy one for the family. Everyone takes turns petting it to make it feel at home. You feed it regularly, and you pray to it, and you love it. Then it just freaks out and goes totally nuts. I mean, you saw this coming, but you never thought it would get this bad this fast. All you did was keep the door closed because there was a party going on. They hate the dark and your forget that. Now it’s leaking everywhere – and it knows where the knives are.

Maybe I got a little over dramatic about it. I just wanted things to be perfect. I needed things to work out. I love the toilet, I really do. I just don’t know how to tell it I love it. I gave it magazines. Good ones. Well, mostly computer ones, but I saved the best of the LIFE subscription I used to get and the TIME subscription my parents got and the NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC mags I stole from the library.

We’ll get this figured out soon. I know it. I can feel it. I will say this much, Jeff is going to make a call. Sometime soon – it’s going to be plumbing day, my friend, and you’re going to get the plumb.

…what am I talking about?

Acting Is A Threat To My Health

You see this mark here? And this one here? How about these over here? Of course you don’t see them, but if you could you would witness the horrible disfiguring that “Fiddler on the Roof” has done to me.

I am forever scarred…

Burns

Abby, who was in the play, can attest to this. Several people became burned or charred as a direct result of the actions on stage. In one scene, the family is celebrating Sabbath. They sing a song called Sabbath prayer. A couple verses into the song, a troupe of candle-weilding freaks (i.e. me and three middle school girls) can prancing on stage with lit, flaming candles.

You can imagine what happens. Abby stood right next to me in this song. We would be standing there and my singing would either blow the candle out or cause the flame to snuff itself. Either way, I need a light and I need it bad. So I would lean my candle over to hers and take some flame. Everytime I did this, I managed to pour a good quantity of burning hot wax unto her hand.

We used candles for 8 nights. You do the math.

Bruises

If you know Heather then you know she’s prone to unpredictable, socially unacceptable behavior in quite social settings. She started what is affectionately known as the “Ass Slapping Reign of Terror.” This title is slightly misleading. HEATHER didn’t hold the reign. It was the guys that held the reign.

ASROT began as affectionate signs of affection and a means of inspiring that “Go Team” atmosphere that footballers love so much. It soon spread to the Russians in the play who are more than buff. These guys are Rusky Gods. When they discovered that hitting someone on the buttocks was okay by theatrical standards, they launched right in.

Laurie had a hand print and three welts on her butt the next day. Heather was equally flustered but less bruised. I, myself, enjoyed quite a lot of bum-touching, but I never got hurt. The only bruised I sustained has not been accredited to any given source, yet.

I’ll just say it’s from ass slapping.

Choking

I chocked Heather one day. It was great. She looked so helpless. I could have just squeezed her back to Jesus.

But just think about those kids without a mommy.

Abrasions

This, I can safely say, only Nathan experienced. Nathan Hoffman is a middle schooler. He also played a Russian, so you know he works out. In the bar scene, at one point, he collapses into a bucket and proceeds to empty his stomach of everything he’s consumed since breast milk.

In the next scene, we stumble drunkenly across the stage. During this one Nathan is drug from one side to the other. Since everyone is supposed to act drunk, no one bothers to get a proper grip on him. I can only imagine what being drug across a stage on your stomach with your shirt up at your chin is like.

Can we say ‘pink belly’?

Cuts

I can personally report on this one. My first story is a boring one. When the play was over, I checked my arm, and I have a cut. I have no idea where it is from or who gave it to me or if I can claim workman’s comp for it. I guess I’ll just have to test it out.

My other injury is a more colorful story. Colorful like blood, that is! Recover, Miles. This took place right before the Wedding Scene. In this scene Motel and Tzietel get married in front of all of us as we sing “Sunrise Sunset.” To set up the scene we all bring on our own benches.

I had already changed into my robes for the wedding and was standing there ready to grab my bench and head on stage. Nathan Swanson was one step ahead of me. He held two benches, legs out at face level, and then let his mind float through space. As a result, I never noticed what he held until it met my eyebrow.

The collision was enough to bring Nathan back to earth long enough for him to say, “Oh, sorry.” Pause. Oh, I’m okay Nathan. I was just nearly rendered blind or completely retarded for the rest of my adult life. Thanks for caring. I thought nothing more of the injury, except a dislike for Nathan, and grabbed the remaining bench and sat down on stage.

We sang and we sang gooooooood. Then the Wedding Dance scene starts. We remain where we were in the previous scene. Then the women of Anatevka come out and do this nice little dance, and we all clap and pretend like we haven’t been watching this dance all bloody week. Then the bottle dancers walk out. They act all tough and macho and then place bottles on their Old West style duster hats.

About this time I noticed something wet enter my eye. I wiped it away (am I sweating that badly?) and noticed that my hand was fairly bloody. Well, way too bloody for sweating, that is. I needed a plan. As the bottle dancers finished up, I pretended once again to care, and I got up to congratulate them. Once offstage I began a steady stream of cursing Nathan, blood, and Nathan’s parents.

I mopped up the blood, answered all the “What are you doing out here? Aren’t you in this scene?” questions, and figured a way back on. During one particular angry outburst (at this point the wedding has turned into Jewish Jerry Springer) I walk on and say things like “What is going on? What’s the noise?” Seamless and cool; most people didn’t even notice that I was gone. They did notice the mark on my eyebrow, though. To this day I have a bruise there and a scab.

Of course, this happened on Friday.

So, here I sit. Bruised, bloody eye. Bruised thigh. Cut up arm. And of course all the psychological damage that comes from hanging around the same people for too long. I hate you all. Don’t you dare add me to MSN or I will block you and then chop you up into tiny pieces. I will feed those dripping, steamy pieces to my snowblower and make meaty, romantic, pink-colored snow out of you.

I mean it.

| It|s holding on. It|s holding on. |

Please Don’t Hurt Me : I Will Sell You My Pogs

That guy, Brian Rand? Turns out, he didn’t do it. But enough of that. There is a new author afoot.

Check out the section by molly b in the poetry page. I highly recommend it.

It seems that the arts sections have been a little dry lately. I’ll try to fix that. I’m gonna type up some new poetry (and some old) and post some of the stuff I had on last time (lazy lazy lazy).

Hang tight, kids. We’ll see if I get beat up anytime soon. It seems the Brian Rand thing may be at an end. He apologized and denied involvement with the poster putter-uppers. I (for now) believe him and am out to figure out who the Benedict Arnolds are that live in this hall.

You see, all the signs/posters that were up before got taken down (by us this time) and we’ve started anew. Welcome to “exploding dog” city. I, however, got a letter written to me. I won’t post it here (Darin told me that I should quit feeding the fire), but suffice to say they want me badly hurt.

Oh my. What should I do? How about … nothing. Let ’em come. I haven’t gotten into a fight for ages, and I think all of them have been with Bryce, so I have lots of pent up aggression waiting to ‘splode.

Sorry – no funny commentary today – I feel drained and it’s only a quarter to 7pm. There should be no more problems with the site from here on in (I hope), so post your hearts off.

| You’re eyes must do some raining, if you’re ever gonna grow |

A Response to a Vandal

Since the “pick your favorite Awayken.com moment” isn’t quite taking off, I’ve decided to just pick what I want out of it and rewrite those. As it is, the wall outside our room was vandalized again. This time I am taking it personal. So I found out his name, Brian Rand, and I wrote him a letter. I sent it to him, too. Here it is.

Dear Brian Rand:

Wow. You’re right. All those things you said about me, they are correct. You know me pretty well, Miss (you’re a girl right? Or do you just act like one? He he, j/k). I’ve been thinking about it, and I am a jackass. I have a very small, but very beautiful, collection of pogs, too! I don’t know how you figured that one, buddy, but you must have a psychic dick cause you nailed that one.

You don’t know how excited/happy I was when I woke up this morning and saw all the cool sayings (both funny AND witty) on my wall. The wall right next to my door, no less! You seem to have a knack for decorating that few but the most … efeminate of our sex attain. I’m not saying that you’re gay; I’m just saying your experimentation with your father has paid off! Good job, mate.

And now it is my turn to apologize. You must have heard that thing I said about you being impotent, right? Gosh, is my face red. I can’t believe that I said that. I mean, you couldn’t be to put posters up. I mean, they look just like the ones I had up there before; that’s what you call a good parody. And I should have known, from seeing your trashy, whore of a girlfriend, that you probably have sex with her a lot. Well, at least when your herpes isn’t acting up. Am I right? Am I right?

The duck (or duct, whichever) was a nice touch, also. Though you left some finger nail polish on one side of it. Ooops. Out with the “boys” again, sweetheart? Just kidding! Though I thought I saw you going into that gay club down in Sioux Falls. Or maybe that was your mom’s house. Who can tell? I’m not gay.

I’m not sure how Bill Gates came into the picture, but I’m betting that you pirate his software. I don’t mean to sound like a Negative Nancy (is your nickname Nancy, or did I hear wrong?), but that kind of behavior only hurts yourself. See, what’ll happen when that cool video game playing and beer drinking job you’ve been dreaming of falls though? It’s hard to get software (pirated or not) when you’re homeless and sucking off Japanese businessmen who seem to pay too little (even if it IS in yen). I could say pirate now, worry later, but when the FBI finds all that little boy porn (it doesn’t help that you have the whole ‘Preteen Love’ folder shared) they might write you up for charges like that, too.

And I’m sure you’ve heard stories about what they do to people like that in jail from your Dad. Is he in jail again, or did he outrun them this time? That man, he never knows when a girl means no, does he? Oh, well, I’m sure you’re not down that road. After all, you’re Dad can’t spell like you can. He spelled “cock” with only one ‘c’. You remember that, don’t you? In court? Maybe you blocked that from your memmory. I mean, if it was MY DAD who did THOSE THINGS to ME, I’d probably pretend I had no idea what you were talking about either.

Well, I should go. See, I have a 4.0 gpa and I didn’t get it by writing letters. I wish I could have that care free life that you have. You don’t have to go to classes (well, I mean, the academic probation says you have to, but they also say you have to go to those AA meetings, right?), you don’t have to clean the vomit off your bed in the morning if you don’t want to. You are truly one for me to look up to.

Hey, stay cool and keep those wonderful signs going! I think you have a future in that!

Yours in Wall Art,

317.

Send Brian your own letters! [email protected].

| Baby, you’re a lost cause |

What Happened to Step Two?

Our lives end in circles. They begin in hard points that conjoin and twist themselves into squares. Life starts off difficult, but simple. It starts off with no chance in the world, but the world a square of land in a circle of blue.

Then, oh then, it starts to repeat. As it repeats, it softens. You learn the dance by heart, but the music is mute. You’re heart skips with the tempo, and your brain vibrates to the tune.

You live, but you control nothing.

As you learn history repeats itself, it leads you to examine your history. Doesn’t it? There comes a point in your life (anyone’s, I guess) where you realize that up until this point you’ve been useless and, after this point (repeating until death), you will continue to be useless.

What you decide to do with this knowledge makes you great, or it makes you nothing.

This isn’t funny. I’m not sure if it’s sad. It’s pensive, and I hope you take time to think about what it means. I was drawing today. Lacey came up to DSU (what else would you do on a Friday night?) and one of the things the three of us did was make posters. I drew; Lacey colored; Jeff placed on the wall.

This sounds silly to saw out loud, but this is my method to art. The method is this : I do what I’m told. When I type, the words put themselves onto paper. There are lots of ways I could explain, but I guess the best one is to say that I’m a vessel. I am a channel for something else. I am an instrument of someone.

The same goes for drawing mostly. The better stuff is done through (though many would argue that none of it is good stuff). Any way, that makes it hard for me to explain my art, but I can eventually come up with what it means if you give me a sec.

Did you ever “feel” bugs on your skin and then there was nothing there?
Did you ever “see” something on your monitor and then there was nothing there?

Have you ever had a moment where you could do anything. Let me explain. I was in those crappy, low-budget, once-a-school-year, grade school productions put on by a group of gypsies with scripts and tshirts. This particular incident happened when I was in seventh grade. On the final night we were giving this girl in the grade ahead of me a ride back to her house. Before the vehicle left the parking lot, as we waited for my mother, this girl and I chatted. Suddenly a strange feeling came over me. It was akin to being drowsy very quickly. I felt like I was outside of myself. Maybe not physically, but my mind was suddenly in a different place. It was like I was thrust into a dream.

In dreams you can do anything. My mind told me this as I sat there. I thought, “I could just reach out and kiss her now. I can do anything right now. This feels just like a dream…” but before any sort of action the feeling waned away.

Has this ever happened to you? I am going to call this a “kissdream” (because the first thing I thought to do was kiss the girl) and maybe it’s something that other people have experienced. I have had several more kissdreams since then. They scare me deeply. I never realize that I’ve experienced one until it’s leaving, and it is then that I realize that I was very close to doing quite unnatural things that could ruin my life or others.

I’m tired. I’m spent. And I think that I pissed Lacey off when she was here. So I’m going to bed.

| Just remember, we’re at the center, not you. |