Tuesday, November 24, 2009

The Art of Being in Public...

...Is one I've never mastered. In fact, I realize that I shouldn't be in public at all unless I've had at least two cups of coffee. Anything less and I'm not equipped. I'm like a football player taking the field without pads, a musician going on stage without an instrument, or somebody that supports Sarah Palin without understanding any of her politics...err...somebody that supports Sarah Palin.

Today I went out after cup one, pummeled my way through the grocery store to pick up a few things for dinner later. There was one cashier, dude in front of me was giving her a sales pitch on how he could save her money on the candy that they sell. Apparently he worked for some candy wholesaler or something. "Who do you get your candy from? Gee, we can save you 75 cents per unit!" This went on for a good five minutes, I found out the cashier lived in Ballard with her husband and really loves the neighborhood, they might move to the suburbs soon because they want to start a family, and on and on and on and I'm clearly waiting and honestly don't you realize this is your job and how the hell did some guy decide he wanted to spend the rest of his waking days with you given you can't even manage a TWO PERSON LINE!

Eventually, she noticed my rolling eyes and rung me up. "Do you want a bag?" "Yes." She looked at me strangely. "What? One word, that's all I've got for you, I don't have anything to sell you, I don't distribute candy, if I did I'd be bored." We weren't connecting. If she ever saw me do comedy she probably wouldn't dig it, if we ever met at a bar we wouldn't talk long, and if she was ever a cashier and I was a patron we probably wouldn't see eye-to-eye because she'd babble on and on to a candy distributor that takes his job too seriously.

After that I went across the street for some lunch at one of the busiest sandwich shops in Seattle. Of course I had to wait. It's a small joint, cash only, so I stood off in a corner while I was waiting for my sandwich. As luck would have it the table closest to me and within earshot was two people on what appeared to be THEIR FIRST DATE! Jackpot! I love this stuff, really. I listen all the time, then I try to gauge whether or not they have a shot, who's into who, it's a riot. Dude was way more into her than she was him. Eventually she brought up the ex.

"He told me my cats were dirty, that did it, we were done."

"So, do you like Dexter?"

Really guy? A TV show? That's all you've got? She already pulled the ex card, hope you didn't pay for this.

"No, not really. I don't know, I mean I do still kind of miss him..."

Crash and burn dude, crash and burn. It's over. Tables opened up around me, I could've sat down and waited, but like hell I was moving.

I even gave guy a topic but he botched it.

"What's with that creepy red-headed guy standing over there?"

"I don't know but it looks like he's laughing at us...and he's writing something down."

"I'm getting security."

Not a word of it. Maybe it's a bit insensitive that I got a kick out of a guy's failed date but hell, the sandwich was only $7.50, and I'm sure he makes a good living. Maybe he distributes candy.

Monday, November 9, 2009

To measure success...

In the metaphorical marathon that is health care reform our government just jogged 10 feet. (And during that 10 feet trampled some womens' rights and continued to pad the pockets of the parasites we've come to recognize as the insurance industries). With the amount of back-patting the governments are doing after this 10-foot scramble the marathon may never be finished in our life-times my fellow tech-happy-slightly-cynical-twenty-somethings. Alas, the world is full of pros, cons, crashing bores, scandals, failures, and every so often something interesting gets put on paper or record.

I won't be on stage as often this week. Main reason being I've got tickets to see the Mountain Goats tomorrow and the Pixies (Doolittle tour!) on Thursday. I figure I'll learn something watching people more advanced at their craft than I am at mine.

The Seattle International Comedy Competition is going on this week and I was hoping to catch some of it tonight since some of my friends are in it this year, but I got into the Steeler game, plus the beginning of the wet season has its way of encouraging me to stay indoors. After the game I put on a documentary about cults just to assure that I won't have pleasant dreams about another Super Bowl victory but instead am guaranteed twisted nightmares remnant of a Rob Zombie flick and I'll wake up in a cold sweat, maybe with heartburn.

My favorite bars are those that remind of a Bukowski novel. The place down the street from me, during the week at least, seems to be in that vein. Sadly, it took me over two years to give it a shot, and I've only got a few weeks left out here. I've been digging it though. One of the candidates for mayor drinks here on a regular basis, one afternoon he was telling me about the corruption and the votes unaccounted for, he's been robbed of several thousand he claimed, King county is up-in-arms, we're a sinking ship...Could be a drunk or he could be a right drunk, stranger things have happened.

"Some poets are drunks but not all drunks are poets." Though I'd also add that people that refer to themselves as poets probably aren't poets. What's a poet?