Tuesday, May 27, 2003

Things get crazier...

I know that if you look in this Blog (and, might I just say, what a word! sounds like you're vomiting!), you'll find days when I've been lucid, inspired, almost pithy and you'll also find days when I'm depressed, sad, mortally wounded.

This won't be one of the pithy days.

Right now, things are getting out of hand. Out of hand? Just plain nuts, to be exact! Watch:

1) After my collision a couple of weeks ago, I'm driving this monstrous Buick - monstrous for me, the guy who rode a motorcycle through most of his marriage. It gobbles gas and is no fun to park but my Honda should be ready to get sometime this week... I hope.

2) Whiplash! Have I mentioned I got whiplash? No kidding. And, hey, this is no fun, people! It hurts!

3) Have I mentioned that I miss Rosa? Well, that would be the understatement of a lifetime! What to say at this point? I can't live without the hope of us being together one day but also feel like it's cruel of Rosa to provide me that hope and no more. But then, is this hope just my own interpretation and not real?

You can probably understand that I've been losing a lot of sleep.

4) Love and Politics (a reading at the Hunger Artists Theatre on May 31 at 3:30pm - said the shameless-plug-monster) is a real bitch. First of all, there's a ton of material for a one-act play because it's mostly monologues... delivered by your's truly. Second, this material could probably have been written better by a 13-year old, blind, chain-smoking monkey with no arms.

... Did I say that out loud?

I'm supposed to limp throughout the entire play, something that I'm not too comfortable doing. Face it, you fake a limp that long - you could goof up. Switch legs, stop limping, whatever. So, I've found the solution. ROCKS! Yep, I'm putting rocks in my shoe. That'll make me limp... probably for a few weeks!

5) Whatever Happened to Me (a reading at the Chance Theater on June 15 at 8:00pm) is becoming more complicated every day. Now, I'm directing... casting... and I may be starring. More details will follow as I get them. Let's just say that, all things being equal, I'd rather be in Milwaukie, Oregon.

6) There's this girl at work, Gaelle. I'm trying to find out if she has a boyfriend. She's so cute, I've had to paint my tongue as a necktie so I don't stand out.

So, how do all of these things compare? How much stress are they causing me? Well, using the new Angst-o-meter (by DistressCo, "Doing our best to help you out so leave us alone!"), we can see just how much stress any given thing is causing me. The Angst-o-meter rates stress from zero to ten, zero meaning "No Stress" and ten meaning "MY HAIR IS ON FIRE!!!"

... Let's watch...

Driving the Buick: 4
Whiplash: 5
Rosa: 7,879,423,792,347,349,739,483,749,237,493,743
Love and Politics: 7
Whatever Happened to Me: 52
Gaelle: 3

Okay. For those of you who think I'm over-reacting, you're probably right. Driving the Buick ain't that bad.

Friday, May 23, 2003

Question time...

Gay Republicans.

Gay Republicans??????

What the hell?! This is worse than the old "Black Republican" joke. How can someone be gay and Republican? How does this work? Anybody?! Anybody?! Answers please!!!

Republican Senatorial hopeful, Mark Foley, from Florida, won't come out and say he's gay. In face, he's been very vocal about not saying anything about his sexuality. "Don't ask, don't tell"?? Sounds like "Don't tell, don't tell"!!

So, he's the mystery candidate. Fine. We all have a private life - it's what he does in public (such as a fanatical support of Bush - which, if he is gay, is about as Ironically Oxymorical as I can imagine) that worries me.

Still, it made me wonder. How can anyone be a gay Republican (considering the rampant homophobia in the party), a black Republican (considering how hard that party works to keep the black population in prison), or a female Republican (considering how hard that party works to deny women their basic human rights)???

For that matter, considering how militaristic, jingoistic... and just plain FUCKING INSANE that party is - how can ANYONE BE REPUBLICAN?????

All answers are welcome. God knows I can't think of any...

Tuesday, May 20, 2003

Can't see the forest...

Well, it looks like Shrub continues to push his "Forest Clear-Cutting, er, Thinning" bill.

For those of you unaware of what this might be, it is Shrub's attempt at stopping forest fires by cutting down the forests. No, I'm not kidding. He wants to log 20 million acres of forest to "keep them clean and healthy". Hey, nothing is cleaner that a vacant lot. Get those damned trees outta there!

This same logic has led us along the road of cleaning up the oceans by eating all the fish, keeping us warm by filling the skies with smog, and controlling the population by prohibiting abortions.

Welcome to planet Earth, folks. Gotta love the way we run it... who else would?

Monday, May 19, 2003

GW's Resume...

I found this highly entertaining and stole the link from Tom Tomorrow's site (Thanks, Tom! Love your comic!) The original content is from Kelley Kramer, to whom my hat is off. I'll quote her from here:

I recently had an email exchange with a right-winger from my local newspaper, and of course the war with Iraq came up pretty quick. But he said something in defense of George Bush that really surprised me. In defense of the attack on Iraq he said 'between Hussein and Bush, Hussein is the bad guy'.

My first response was ... So your guy is better than a third world dictator, Wow! what an accomplishment! Does he put that on his resume?

And with that in mind, I started wondering ... what would a George W. Bush resume look like exactly? Listed below is what I came up with.

George W. Bush Resume

Past work experience:

Ran for congress and lost.
Produced a Hollywood slasher B movie.
Bought an oil company, but couldn't find any oil in Texas, company went bankrupt shortly after I sold all my stock.
Bought the Texas Rangers baseball team in a sweetheart deal that took land using tax-payer money. Biggest move: Traded Sammy Sosa to the Chicago White Sox.
With fathers help (and his name) was elected Governor of Texas.
Accomplishments: Changed pollution laws for power and oil companies and made Texas the most polluted state in the Union. Replaced Los Angeles with Houston as the most smog ridden city in America. Cut taxes and bankrupted the Texas government to the tune of billions in borrowed money. Set record for most executions by any Governor in American history.
Became president after losing the popular vote by over 500,000 votes, with the help of my fathers appointments to the Supreme Court.

Accomplishments as president:

Attacked and took over two countries.
Spent the surplus and bankrupted the treasury.
Shattered record for biggest annual deficit in history.
Set economic record for most private bankruptcies filed in any 12 month period.
Set all-time record for biggest drop in the history of the stock market.
First president in decades to execute a federal prisoner.
First president in US history to enter office with a criminal record.
First year in office set the all-time record for most days on vacation by any president in US history.
After taking the entire month of August off for vacation, presided over the worst security failure in US history.
Set the record for most campaign fund-raising trips than any other president in US history.
In my first two years in office over 2 million Americans lost their job.
Cut unemployment benefits for more out of work Americans than any president in US history.
Set the all-time record for most foreclosures in a 12 month period.
Appointed more convicted criminals to administration positions than any president in US history.
Set the record for the least amount of press conferences than any president since the advent of television.
Signed more laws and executive orders amending the Constitution than any president in US history.
Presided over the biggest energy crises in US history and refused to intervene when corruption was revealed.
Presided over the highest gasoline prices in US history and refused to use the national reserves as past presidents have.
Cut healthcare benefits for war veterans.
Set the all-time record for most people worldwide to simultaneously take to the streets to protest me (15 million people), shattering the record for protest against any person in the history of mankind. (http://www.hyperreal.org/~dana/marches/)
Dissolved more international treaties than any president in US history.
My presidency is the most secretive and un-accountable of any in US history.
Members of my cabinet are the richest of any administration in US history. (the 'poorest' multi-millionaire, Condoleeza Rice has an Chevron oil tanker named after her).
First president in US history to have all 50 states of the Union simultaneously go bankrupt.
Presided over the biggest corporate stock market fraud of any market in any country in the history of the world.
First president in US history to order a US attack and military occupation of a sovereign nation.
Created the largest government department bureaucracy in the history of the United States.
Set the all-time record for biggest annual budget spending increases, more than any president in US history.
First president in US history to have the United Nations remove the US from the human rights commission.
First president in US history to have the United Nations remove the US from the elections monitoring board.
Removed more checks and balances, and have the least amount of congressional oversight than any presidential administration in US history.
Rendered the entire United Nations irrelevant.
Withdrew from the World Court of Law.
Refused to allow inspectors access to US prisoners of war and by default no longer abide by the Geneva Conventions.
First president in US history to refuse United Nations election inspectors (during the 2002 US elections).
All-time US (and world) record holder for most corporate campaign donations.
My biggest life-time campaign contributor presided over one of the largest corporate bankruptcy frauds in world history (Kenneth Lay, former CEO of Enron Corporation).
Spent more money on polls and focus groups than any president in US history.
First president in US history to unilaterally attack a sovereign nation against the will of the United Nations and the world community.
First president to run and hide when the US came under attack (and then lied saying the enemy had the code to Air Force 1)
First US president to establish a secret shadow government.
Took the biggest world sympathy for the US after 911, and in less than a year made the US the most resented country in the world (possibly the biggest diplomatic failure in US and world history).
With a policy of 'dis-engagement' created the most hostile Israeli-Palestine relations in at least 30 years.
First US president in history to have a majority of the people of Europe (71%) view my presidency as the biggest threat to world peace and stability.
First US president in history to have the people of South Korea more threatened by the US than their immediate neighbor, North Korea.
Changed US policy to allow convicted criminals to be awarded government contracts.
Set all-time record for number of administration appointees who violated US law by not selling huge investments in corporations bidding for government contracts.
Failed to fulfill my pledge to get Osama Bin Laden 'dead or alive'.
Failed to capture the anthrax killer who tried to murder the leaders of our country at the United States Capitol building. After 18 months I have no leads and zero suspects.
In the 18 months following the 911 attacks I have successfully prevented any public investigation into the biggest security failure in the history of the United States.
Removed more freedoms and civil liberties for Americans than any other president in US history.
In a little over two years created the most divided country in decades, possibly the most divided the US has ever been since the civil war.
Entered office with the strongest economy in US history and in less than two years turned every single economic category heading straight down.

Records and References:

At least one conviction for drunk driving in Maine (Texas driving record has been erased and is not available).
AWOL from National Guard and Deserted the military during a time of war.
Refused to take drug test or even answer any questions about drug use.
All records of my tenure as governor of Texas have been spirited away to my fathers library, sealed in secrecy and un-available for public view.
All records of any SEC investigations into my insider trading or bankrupt companies are sealed in secrecy and un-available for public view.
All minutes of meetings for any public corporation I served on the board are sealed in secrecy and un-available for public view.
Any records or minutes from meetings I (or my VP) attended regarding public energy policy are sealed in secrecy and un-available for public review.
For personal references please speak to my daddy or uncle James Baker (They can be reached at their offices of the Carlyle Group for war-profiteering.)
Love and Marriage...

Well, my youngest brother, Richard, got married this weekend.

I was there.

This is how it happened...

I left work early on Friday, a fine way to start a weekend no matter what you're doing, and headed to the airport. I couldn't believe the amount of senseless security they had. It was incredibly inane! I kid you not - they checked the buttons on my jacket!!! (I swear. I am NOT James Bond!)

The only thing that got me through this and the interminable wait at the gate was a woman with whom I'd sparked a conversation. Her name was Lana. She was quite beautiful and quite intelligent and live quite a long way away. She was returning home to Seattle whilst I was simply visiting. Oh well. But we had a nice conversation.

The flight was uneventful, if you'll excuse the fact that my "cheeseburger" tried to bite me.

Off the plane, now, and Dwight was waiting for me at the baggage claim area. As we waited for my suitcase to come from the heavenly chute (who thought of this system?!), Lana returned. We'd sat in different areas of the plane, so we didn't talk there. She approached me and said, "So, how was your flight?" Immediately, the "stupid statement" alarms went off but I tried to reply as best I could. "I was about five rows behind you so pretty much the same as yours." Now, the "stupid reply alarms" were blaring and she walked away to make them stop.

I hate Seattle. It used to be my favorite city but that was back when Rosa and I were together and in love, as opposed to now: divorced and in pain. So, I started smoking almost as soon as I was off the plane. And I kept on smoking that whole weekend.

It didn't help that, almost immediately, Dwight let me know how little he wanted to hear about how much I missed Rosa. And here I was, in a city where I see Rosa on every street, around every corner - I needed to talk about that. But, no. Dwight didn't want to hear it.

My sleep wasn't that good that night or even that weekend. Each night, I awoke from a nightmare about Rosa and how much I miss her and need her back, nightmares sparked, I think, by geography more than anything else. But, then, there was the fact of Richard's marriage - and any marriage can't help but remind me of mine... and my fuck up.

Saturday, I spent much of the day studying for my next staged reading. (Love & Politics. Hunger Artists Theater. Fullerton. May 31. Check local listings. Operators are standing by. Call now.) Much of my life in the next couple weeks will be spent with this script. Let's just say. I'll be busy.

But Saturday night was the wedding. It was beautiful. It was at a house that had been converted into a location for weddings and things (no, I don't know what they call that). The ceremony was in the garden. I've never seen Richard happier. Okay, I haven't seen Richard all that much so I know it doesn't count... still... Almost as soon as the ceremony started, I could feel a hand reach into my chest and grip my heart and I realized that I'd come here alone as I've walked alone as I've lived alone these past three plus years. Then, suddenly, I felt completely alone, shut off from everyone around me. And I knew I'd continue to be that way. And it was all my fault. Then, I couldn't help it. Tears started coming down.

And my dear step-mom, Blanche, reached over and took my hand, as if to say, "You're not alone."

But my emotions weren't done with me, yet. As the ceremony continued, all I could think of was how utterly alone my life was without Rosa and how desperately I needed her there and how I was the one who left. It was all my fault and there was no denying that, no stepping out of that. No relief. Only pain.

The day had been beautiful. Sunny - and that's something up there! But, suddenly, rain began to fall, and the ceremony wasn't yet over... but you could tell they started to hurry a bit. I squelched my own waterworks, focusing my attention back on the bride and groom, hoping - along with everyone else - that the rain would cease for just a moment.

Soon, they were done and they'd made it through the ceremony without any major catastrophes, only a few drops of water. Everyone went into the house... except me. I walked to the side of the building and spent about 20 minutes bawling my head off - and smoking. The presence of others snapped me out of it, some people I didn't know but pretended to be okay for.

Then, inside. Toasts. Food. Cake. Music. Fun. No Rosa.

Flying back the next day, I slept for most of the flight.

When will life stop being about getting through things and return to being about looking forward to things?

Thursday, May 15, 2003

This is where I concede I AM OLD!

There are just times when you have to admit it: shit like this didn't go on in YOUR DAY!

Tattoos? Sure!

Piercings? Okay.


... huh?

TONGUE-SPLITTING!! They take your tongue and SPLIT IT!

Give me my walker. I'm old.
How did I get here?

(This entry comes with pictures, big, beautiful pictures, pictures that make you want to weep with joy and break your heart and give you warts. These are powerful pictures! They are pictures you will never forget, fall in love with, and want to marry. Gooood pictures. However, I can't include those pictures with this entry... because, well, I'm stupid. You need to know a little "html" in order to do it and, well, I don't know a little "html"... I'm lucky if I know a little "h"! So, if you happen to know some "html" and think you can help me, then please write me at klacelle@earthlink.net and let me know. Until then... imagine pretty pictures. Aren't they nice? Or you can write me at klacelle@earthlink.net and request the pictures and I'll be happy to send you some. Isn't that special?)

(And now... our story...)

I went hiking on Saturday. Down the Ortega Highway, I drove Saturday morning, arriving at just before 7am. It was pretty darned cold. I mean, for the first hour or so, I could see my own breath!! But I went, anyway. The idea was to go on a long hike. I went alone because, well, I am pretty much the only one dumb enough to go on a long hike. Most other people would, oh, have breakfast, watch some TV... enjoy themselves. Me? I was looking for a little masochistic "ME" time!

Rosa and I had taken this hike only once before. I didn't know why. It was quite beautiful. I wish you could see it. Some kind of image reproduction... a kind of "picture", if you will, would be really helpful right now. The trail went past waterfalls, around a large hill, and down to a creek where Rosa and I had sat to eat. I did just that, feeling her near. Then, the trial crossed the creek and went up and down and up and down (etc, etc, etc) through hills and glens, overgrown trees and undergrowth. Actually, there wasn't much of a trail at all but I followed it. Up ahead, was a point where I had protected Rosa from a rattle snake... there were no rattlers that day. Nor were there any mountain lions, I know because I kept looking! (Imagine Don Knotts hiking...)

When I crossed another creek, it was time to head uphill again... and what a climb. What I didn't know - I wouldn't find this out until after I got home - was that I was going 12 miles out and up nearly 800 feet.

Say it with me: "OUCH!"

No wonder Rosa and I only did this hike once! Now, I'm not going to lie to you; I was in my share of pain as a result of this: feet, legs, hips... no fun. But I needed it. I needed something to strip away the dull ache of being denied Rosa's presence.

What better to strip away a dull ache than a profound ache, right?

After heading up the hill, and going around three or four others, I reached my destination: another set of waterfalls. No one was around and I had my pick of any of the enormous boulders next to the falls upon which to stretch out and enjoy my lunch. Ah, lunch: one Balance Bar and a snack pack of Cheetos. Oh, and plenty of water. Yum!

After eating, I stretched out and couldn't help thinking, "How the hell did I get here?"

The response was immediate. "Ken? You walked."

"Yes. I know that. I mean how did I get to this point in my life?"

"Oh. That. Well, shucks... a lot of things, I guess."

"I divorced my one, true love."

"And you wrote plays about it."

"And I made a million and one mistakes."

"And you made new friends."

"And I've wasted so much time."

"And you learned a thing or two."

Eventually, my overactive brain took a break. I watched the water fall. I watched the pond beneath. I watch the hawks (or so I supposed they were) rise and coast on the thermals. And I realized, "If anything finds me here alone - like, say, a mountain lion - I'm lunch."

It didn't take too long to gather my things and start heading back. Afternoon was approaching in it's full - and very warm - glory. My legs were sore. I had to get back.

How did I get there? If I knew, if there was some clear way I could change it so I could be somewhere else, like at Rosa's side, I'd change it in a second without thinking about it. Sadly, though, there is no way to go back and fix things. How did I get there? Maybe I didn't. Oh, sure, I ended up there and, yes, it was my doing. But so many things had so many consequences and related to so much else in my life that I fell like I didn't so much get there as I was gotten there. We don't get anywhere in our lives. It is our past selves who move us. Living in the present, we are captives of our consequences. (MUST write that down!)

Obviously, I did make it to my car. I got there at noon. I'd been gone for five hours and I was shocked at how evenly the time had worked out. I got out of there and drove back to the 5 freeway. The 5 was stop and go traffic. Stop and go. Stop and go. The guy in front of me stopped. I stopped. The guy in front of me started. I started. The guy in front of me stopped. (Feel like you've heard this before? Wait!) I stopped.

The guy in back of me, who was coming from quite a distance back, didn't notice that we'd stopped. As he approached, I thought, "He's going to hit me." I couldn't go anywhere because the guy in front of me was stopped. The guy behind me slammed on his brakes - his tires screeched - I braced myself - BAM!

His car was totaled. My car was hurt but drivable. I'm fine.

But I couldn't help but wonder what was going through this poor kids head, this poor guy who, at about 19 years old, had just bought this, his first car, from his parents one week before. Was he thinking, "How the hell did I get here?"

Tuesday, May 13, 2003

Welcome to Sunyata...

What a week. Folks, there's so much to write and I won't get the time so let's take it piece by piece...

"Welcome to Sunyata." That's what Rosa used to say to me. It was her saying, one of her few, and it was a good one.

"Sunyata" is a Sanskrit word mean "emptiness"... but it means "emptiness" the way abyssal means "kinda deep". "Sunyata" is the eternal emptiness, the primal emptiness. It's the boss of emptiness - get it?

And this was her joke. "Welcome to Sunyata." Welcome to the void. Welcome to the darkest, emptiest spot you could ever imagine. Look in your wallet when you want to buy something? "Welcome to Sunyata." Check out the fridge when you're really hungry? "Welcome to Sunyata."

Leave the love of your life because she tells you to find someone else and you do and you realize you are shit and worthless and the lowest scum imaginable and are trapped in a prison of your own making in a meaningless life that you only wish you could escape from.....? "Welcome to Sunyata."

Yep. So, I was living in Sunyata. Sunyata and I were buddies. Sunyata and I used to play 5-card stud in the middle of the night with my subconscious as I sleepwalked... and he cheated!

"Welcome to Sunyata."

Then, earlier this year, Rosa and I started coming back together and the pieces of my life were beginning to mend.

And I said to her, "It looks like I've finally out of Sunyata." And she said, "You and I need to talk about Sunyata." Was she trying to give me a hint? Clue me in to the fact that she would soon be dumping my ass?

I don't know. But, pretty soon, I was back with Sunyata, living with the emptiness my life has given me.

... but it's not all bad news.

Sunyata, as I mentioned, is the void. It is the emptiness. And it lives inside me and it takes up the geography where used to reside my heart. But then, one night, a question occurred. "Where does life come from?" Where does stuff come from? Where did my stereo and my car and my friends and my plays and my life and everything else come from? From out of the void, of course. They came from Sunyata. Just as the big bang originated from the void of space, so too this. Anything traced back far enough falls into void eventually.

And this is where I am. In Sunyata. The void? Sure. But the void from out of which all possibilities arise and from where I arise. And it's forcing me out. You can't live forever in Sunyata because, well, then it wouldn't be a void, would it? So, it's a temporal and temporary place. It's a feel that dies. The void gets filled.

And, eventually, we go back.

So, welcome to Sunyata.

Friday, May 09, 2003

One month later...

My Side started off in high school. The idea was that I wanted to write but, pretty much, only had the talent to babble... it was when the journalism advisor (why don't they just call them teachers?) agreed to the whole, crazy idea when heads turned and My Side, the column, was born. Tim Murphy, who I have heard occasionally reads this, actually suggested, at the time, that it was a pretty bad idea. (Sean, you'll still be hearing about the whole "keep the door open" thing in 20 years, too...)

What did it do? Well, writing the column did get me noticed. Oh, it nearly got me expelled but it got me noticed by other people, too. Practically all the teachers loved it, while most of the students hated it. That told me I was on to something. It also attracted the attention of Rosa Piedra...

I didn't have to many options, after high school, for college. I had no money and only mediocre grades... nobody seemed too interested in my acting ability or my column. So, I went to Santa Ana College because, basically, they were cheap. My Side came back in their newspaper. This, again, attracted some attention and I was nearly expelled... again. Also, it attracted the attention of Rosa Piedra...

After college, well... since I didn't graduate, I fluttered from here to there to just over there behind the ficus...

My Side popped up on a website back in the early 90's - so long ago, I forgot the name of the site! It helped me to express so many things going on in my life. By that time, Rosa Piedra had become Rosa La Celle and I would show her the columns before they went up on the site.

Now, My Side is this happy little Blog. (What? You don't think it's happy?) I started writing one month ago, after I put an end to over a year of "Kenmails" - if you don't know, consider yourself lucky. I would say that I'm too busy acting or writing plays to work on getting My Side back out there for the masses (this Blog is by invitation only!... sure) but I haven't been acting or writing.

Actually, for the past month, I've been too busy mourning the tragedy of my own life to do anything... and that sounds pathetic. I had planned to start this AFTER all the drama with Rosa had passed, when we knew where we were headed and I could write about the journey there... but that isn't what came to pass. She dumped me and here I am with my guts hanging out, still trying to figure out if I'm going to wake up.

But it's not common for me to be in one place too long, speaking metaphorically. After a month of mourning, well, I get bored. Don't you? Yesterday, I was so depressed, I couldn't get out of bed. I missed a day of work. I slept until 2:30pm!!

But I had some time to think. I realized that I will move forward - none of us has a choice in that. Somehow, I will move on. If I meet someone, I'll date. (God! I wish it was that easy!!) However, I've also decided to keep things open with Rosa. I'll make the occasional call, talk to her now and then. Who knows? Maybe things will work out one day? I can't deny it's what I want more than anything else. I can't deny that I've loved her for more than half my life.

Coming to that realization - that I can move forward while looking back, that I can hold two disparate thoughts at the same time - has actually helped a little. Why? How? A lot of people have been telling me to do one thing or the other. "Shut her out of your life." "Bug her! Hound her!" But I think what I realized is that the time for decisions hasn't even arrived, yet. Why make a decision now? I'm going to live my life and we'll just see what happens.

Hopefully, "living my life" will include some writing. I haven't been able to write since Rosa dumped me. I'm getting a lot of crazy idea, though. One of them is a murder-mystery... we'll see...

Wednesday, May 07, 2003

We Live in a DC Universe!!

Sometimes, the universe conspires to make me speechless...

Enjoy it.

Meanwhile, I'm going to paste in the entirety of this article because it is just too much to believe. (Sorry, Sean. Somebody beat you to it.)

LONDON (Reuters) - A masked and caped do-gooder has been sweeping through an English town, performing good deeds and scattering terrified bad guys, a local newspaper reported.

The Kent and Sussex Courier said Friday it had received letters from "stunned residents" of the town of Tunbridge Wells, southeast of London, who saw the man in a brown mask and cape scare off hooligans and return a woman's dropped purse.

"To my great surprise," the paper quoted 21-year-old psychology student Ellen Neville as saying, "a masked man wearing a brown cape rushed past me to assist a woman who was having a bother with a group of youths.

"He swept in, broke up the commotion and ran off, leaving myself and the woman in a state of shock," she said.

A man wrote to say he was being chased by some youths when the hero appeared and "shocked the gang so much they ran off."

Another woman wrote to say the crusader had tapped her on her shoulder to return her purse.

"If only there were more people around with this kind-hearted spirit," she said.
The Great WMD Search Continues!...

For those who have been following the story of the great search for Iraqi Weapons of Mass Destructions, you'll recall that, at first, they had lots and lots of weapons. Then, they had MORE weapons. Then, they had so many weapons THEY'D KILL US ALL! HIDE! RUN! RUN AWAY! PANIC!!!

So we went and killed them. Wiped 'em out. Bombed 'em to stone. Showed them "a thing" or "two".

Now, Shrub has to produce on his promise of all the WMDs. (Acronyms are for the lazy... and the blogger...)

At first, he knew he'd find them. Then, he said, "They knew we were coming so they got rid of them." Then, since that didn't work, he was sure again that he'd find them.

Oh, it was such fun!!!

Today, Lt. Gen. William S. Wallace said that the reason Saddam never used them (we know they're there!) was because he hid them so well from us (we know they're there!) that he couldn't retrieve them (we know they're there!) from their hiding places. You see? Read this.

Hm... let's see...

So, Saddam had all these weapons and once the US invaded... he hid them. Because, when someone attacks, you certainly don't use weapons... you hide them. Sure, that makes sense.

Boy, this Saddam feller must've been Kee-raazy!!!

Tuesday, May 06, 2003

And this is your last warning...

Some of you may not have heard about this. It is a couple of days old.

Sunday, Colin Powell said that he had given Syria a final demand to stop aiding terrorist groups (with absolutely no proof that they actually have) and cautioned that it would face "continuing difficulties" with America if it failed to do so. What does this mean? Well, we've been giving Syria warnings left and right since before the Iraqi war ended. I wouldn't be surprised if we went there, next.

For more information, check this out: (Sorry, I forgot to include this link yesterday...)

For those of you who still believe Shrub is a peace-lover, please take note.
Coping, etc...

There's a scene in Monty Python's "Meaning of Life" that has become quite famous, almost archetypal, wherein a very large man, having eaten too much, explodes. His ribcage is splayed before us, heart frantically thumping along, and this man's face frozen in a permanent, "Uh oh."

You remember that?

That's me. The only exception I would throw out to you is that my guts haven't burst from overindulgence but, rather, trauma. I quite literally feel like my ribcage has been thrown open and I have to hold my guts or they'll fly across the room.

... And who wants that?

Maybe that's why I can't seem to get out of bed...?

Annie told me that each time we suffer from a broken heart, we cope differently. (I don't want to know how she knows this. I can only hope it's from a book.) Well, differently indeed. It's been over a week and I still can't seem to collect myself. I might be holding in my guts but everything else is flying away - oh, not broken off - attached by some string of flesh. There's my ability to write, hanging off of me like some cancerous pimple. (In case you're wondering, I wouldn't consider this writing. This is whining, which is close but... no.) My narcoleptic needs have grown like a boil on my back that seems to stick me to my bed. And my attention span? It's hanging out of both ears by 15-foot long, stretched Silly Puttys of skin...

But, I'm coping.

I'm going to work, where the Cisco buy-out of Linksys has put everyone into paranoid panic. "They're going to lay us all off," everyone says. Shut up. My heart is broken.

I'm hanging out with Keith more often... which is... um... new.

Anyway, what was the point of this? Oh, guts wide open, right! Basically, I'm in a lot of pain - all the time. When does this end? Other than alcohol and illegal drugs, what helps take the pain away? Any answers out there?

Saturday, May 03, 2003

Rain falling on the ocean…

I’ve had an interesting past couple of days. Typical of my life, it was full of personal revelations that, in the final analysis, mean very little but are fun to talk about just the same…

I spoke with Rosa yesterday morning. I spoke with her because I had a non-“relationship” topic and I thought we could just talk. Okay, so I was wrong. The topic was over an “Adventure Pass”. An “Adventure Pass” is a parking pass to the national forests, which is an annual pass that allows you to park without paying a fee. The pass, however, is $30. If you hike regularly, it quickly pays for itself. Since I would be hiking on Saturday (today), I would need one. So, I called Rosa to ask her if she had one.

It was painful to hear Rosa’s complete lack of concern, her neutrality. My heart was breaking and it seemed difficult for her to remember my name. I kept expecting her to call me “Kim” or “Len” or something close but not quite there.

Anyway, I was very upset. And a storm was moving in, making it look like hiking on Saturday would be out.

So, I drove to REI at lunch and bought myself an Adventure Pass. I stopped at home and grabbed my gear. My boss let me leave work an hour early and I shot down the 5 freeway, on my way to Ortega highway and the hiking trail.

Now, why was I doing this? Why was I hiking alone? I’d always been a proponent of the “buddy system” when hiking. It’s just common sense; why was I going against that now? Very simply, because I was alone. I am alone. Hiking was something sacred to me in relation to my marriage. It was always hard to me to go without her, harder considering the few times that happened, I did it with another woman. Talk about your infidelities…

Further, I needed something tangible, some visible way that I could live without Rosa. I needed to be able to say, “Look. You might be alone and miserable and in terrible pain but you can hike.” As small as that was, it was something. This mental state worried me, and worries me, but my head is so full of Rosa, my heart so broken, that I feel – for lack of a better term – mentally constipated. I want to write but I can’t. I cannot create. Rosa turning away from me has left me feeling impotent – and I needed to show myself that it wasn’t so.

But the rain was coming. It could have rained while I was hiking. In addition, I was hiking at night. Night could fall and I could get lost out there.

I couldn’t have cared less.

I went. And I had a wonderful time because it was just me and the ground and the trees and the creek and the sky above. My feet were moving and my blood was pumping and there was no time to fear aloneness. There was no time to contemplate “out-here-ness” and “in-there-ness”, the idea that I have been left out here in a cold world without a warmth of Rosa’s sweet, sweet embrace. There was no time for that clutching sensation of doom to take my breath and catch it in my throat until I felt dizzy with anguish.

It was good. It was something that made me feel less dead inside. Not alive. Not happy. But less dead was better than I’d felt in weeks.

So, I’ll be doing more of that.

Afterwards – and, by the way, it didn’t rain on me and I drove away in plenty of light – I headed down to San Diego to see Tim. He’s been a terrific help. I always know he’ll make me feel good about myself, even when I know he’s trying for the opposite affect.

This afternoon, as I was driving home, I saw rain off the coast, pouring into the ocean. Rain on the ocean. What a terrible waste. There are drought-stricken states, empty rivers, farmers praying for the stuff. There it was, water into water.

I’ve only seen this a couple times in my life… and I think this was the first time I saw it in California. It’s a beautiful sight, almost daunting.

Rain on the ocean. So pointless. Life giving rain, falling into an ocean that doesn’t need it, doesn’t want it.

… And, as I’m sure you’re not surprised to hear, I thought of Rosa.

Rain falling into the ocean. Like love being showered onto someone who doesn’t want it, doesn’t need it – or who doesn’t think she needs it.

What a waste.

But I move over here, away from the ocean – and maybe there’s someone who’s praying for some rain.

God, if only it was that easy!

For those who have been writing and calling and generally tolerating me, I want to express my gratitude. This is a hard time for me, one of many, and I am grateful. If I haven’t heard from you lately, please send me a word and let me know how things are in your world.

Friday, May 02, 2003

They say, "It's just going to hurt for a while."

It's so hard to live without hope.

A few weeks ago... about a month ago, Rosa and I were going to try to be together again. I made a couple of cds with hope for the future. They were so brimming with hope. Then, she dumped me.

It's a good thing that I realized that it's not because I'm a terrible person. I'm not that person, any more.

But hope comes from a different place, a deeper place. One is tempted, in such a case, to say that it comes from the heart.

If you broke your leg, people wouldn't say to you, "Well, that's gonna hurt for a while." If you were wounded, stabbed, no one would just say, "Wow. That's gonna hurt for a while." But when your heart is broken, it seems the only thing people can say to you is, "It's going to hurt for a while." It seems there's just nothing anyone can do in such a case.

But when you're hurting, when you're wounded, you need more than that. And it's terrible that there isn't anything more anyone can do.

A future without Rosa is so unimaginable to me. I don't know how it's going to be possible.

Thursday, May 01, 2003

This is a test...

I just did this "Romance Meter" - I sometimes do stupid shit at work - and laughed at the results. It seems, I rate pretty well... but that's irrelevant since Rosa doesn't want me. Anyway, I thought I'd past it in... so... here we go...

My Romance Meter

Optimist 80%
20% Cynic
Close 86%
14% Distant
Long Term 69%
31% Brief
What does my romance meter read?

Can I say "I'm shocked"? Hey, this web html yada yada stuff is magic to me - I just like the pretty colors.

... My hair is still terribly short, for those keeping score at home. (How short? I think the last time it was this short, I was in elementary school!!!)
Once upon a time... I had hair...

Oh, god. How do I tell you this?

You see, with my life in turmoil, I kind of decided that I wanted to change my look a bit. So, I started growing my mustache and goatee. That was good. That worked.

Then, I decided I wanted to get my hair cut. Sure. Why not? It's normal...

Isn't it?

I wanted to do something where I could just get out of bed, wash it, throw some gel in, and go. No blow drying. No brushing.


So, I got it cut.

A lot.

Um, a whole lot.

Thank god, I can't put pictures on this site!

Thank god, as well, that my hair grows quickly. I'm sure I'll be mistaken for some pro-war marine any day now.

This just goes to show that we all do stupid things when we're depressed. Some of us eat too much. Some of us gamble.

Some of us have all of our hair cut off...