Greatest Invention Ever

Every time I use the oven, the smoke alarm goes off.

I’ve tried everything

I’ve taken the batteries out, but then the maintenance man bitches

I’ve moved it to the other side of the kitchen, but then it picks up smoke from the neighbors

I’ve placed a fan towards the vents, only to have the alarm go off.

I guess somethings are meant to be annoying.

The only combatant I have these days is headphones.

Beep Beep

Neighbors pound and shout “WHAT’S GOING ON IN THERE!”

But I only hear Tom Petty running down a dream.

God Bless Bose

Featured Blogs that Get More Views Than Mine: Finding French Charming

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So my homie K-squared gave me a shout out on her blog Finding French Charming  Normally, I’d play along except I have exactly 3 people’s blogs I follow.

…and she’s one of them.

So the whole pay it forward idea is a bit moot, but I’ll play along for the for the “lulz” as the kids would say but only after I thank her my way, with a blog review.

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I’m not entirely sure when I started following Finding French Charming. I’m pretty sure I was getting cozy with some Makers Mark, and saw a beautiful women holding “Mis Amor” posters and liking something I wrote. I clicked over and read the tagline:

Finding true love…. Even after forty.

HOLD

THE

FUCKING

PHONE!

There is no way she is in her forties.

NO WAY!

Sweetheart if you’re over forty, then I have a 14 inch dick. I’ve seen a lot of bull shit on the interwebs but I’m not buying that one. At some point if you could comment your doctor’s name and phone number that would be great. I would love to have a long chat about what I need to be doing upkeep wise.

Anyways, I started reading her story and could instantly relate. Lived in Texas, been on a shit ton of online dates, looking for someone who doesn’t suck. Okay nothing new.

…But wait a minute, she actually found someone? Like found someone, found someone, from the internet? What the fuck?

Holy shit, that is fucking amazing to me! A normal person (at least I assume from your writing), finding that in the crap shoot that is the internet. Wow!

I don’t mainly talk about my background much, especially when it comes to that scene. But If I’m taking stats, They’re probably in the ballpark of something like this:

-Been in the online game for only 3 years, only dated girls I knew in person before that.

-Hundred of dates,

-Age range 18 to 54

-All different backgrounds, races, nationalities, and even a few that didn’t speak English.

-Most of them ended in either sex, drunken make outs, awkward conversations were be  both said fuck it, the girl being crazy or weird and me not pursuing, or the opposite, me acting like a jackass and the girl taking off.

-I’ve probably only been on a handful of second dates, mainly because I was either self loathing around the holidays, she was a good fuck, or I genuinely liked her.

-All and all, I can think of three I would like to see again.

-So at the end of the day, we’re talking a 3% success rate for me (in multiple states mind you) when it comes to some type of actual connection.

So I have to say it again, that shit is fucking amazing to me. I bitch a lot about online dating because it really doesn’t make sense. Let’s judge someone solely based on how they take pictures and how witty their 500 character bio’s can be, and whether or not they are in close proximity to me. It’s like the retarded lottery, except for whatever reason I keep playing, which makes me wonder who’s really the retarded one.

But I digress…

Here’s the thing I dig the most about the K-money’s blog. It’s her tenacity. This journey isn’t all sunshine and roses. Shit happens. Literally. She clogs the toilet the first time she meets her French boyfriend’s mother. She has to deal with douche bag lawyers with fancy drink orders, Micro-manager motorcycle riders, fireman Hoarders, and many more cringe worthy stories in which I’m sure she hasn’t talked about yet.

And through it all, she keeps her head up, and goes forward. I like that. A lot of her writing is humorous, with a “it’s not a big deal” vibe to it. I’m sure she didn’t always feel that way but the fact she can look back and joke to random readers around the world about her life in this way is pretty awesome. I got to say this French Charming sounds like a lucky guy, cause who doesn’t find that sexy?

Overall the blog is an 8 out of 10

If you’re ever bored in the Chicago area, shoot me an email. We’ll grab a drink and trade shitty date stories. I have a good one just off the top of my head, where a bartender rack jacked this girl from OKC that I was convinced was a catfish, at a packed bar Saturday night in Texas. Can’t make that shit up.

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So as promised my two quotes about love:

“Love is all right for those who can handle the psychic overload. It’s like trying to carry a full garbage can on your back over a rushing river of piss.” – Charles Bukowski

“Love is where you find it. I think it is foolish to go around looking for it, and I think it can be poisonous. I wish that people who are conventionally supposed to love each other would say to each other, when they fight, ‘Please — a little less love, and a little more common decency” – Kurt Vonnegut

Drunken Photo Shoots

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*Click *Click*Click

The shutter on the Nikon went off as the back patio of the bar. The flash poured on the two while the rest of the group was oblivious around them.

“Just one more, this time a little closer together,” the camera woman said. She was excited to use her camera on someone other than her husband and dog for a change– a statement she made many times throughout the night.

The redhead grabbed me closer while I pretended this was the Royal Wedding shoot. I stared at her and made jokes that I looked like blonde Prince Henry with less hair.

“So you’re prince William?”

I glared at her and moved her chin.

“Stop moving my face.” she said through her grin.

“Stop trying to pose! We need to make this authentic for the readers of Teen People.” I said.

She looked down and laughed into my chest. The camera girl worked ferociously.

“Oh my god you guys! this is too cute! I’m feeling something here between you two!”

I knew just what she meant. I felt it too. I felt it the first time I walked into their party that afternoon and greeted my friend’s redheaded sister. The last time I saw her she was drunk and asking about this girl I was seeing. That was five years ago. She had outgrown her parent’s divorce issues, or so I thought.

It’s always a weird feeling when someone likes you. Your gut takes a hold of you, knowing you have this power over someone. In the past, it gave me a rush and I’d want to reciprocate. Now it happens more often, and it makes me wonder. Is this a curse? What do I want? When am I going to feel this way about someone else?

*Click*Click*Click

The redhead looked back up in my eyes. I knew that look, but ignored it. We posed in more ridiculous ways, ending on a vogue. The Camera girl and the redhead consulted among the pictures. I excused myself and went to the bathroom.

“Hurry back!” the redhead yelled.

“Ya! Hurry! You have to see these pictures! They’re soooo cute!” The camera girl said.

I walked into the bar, past the rows of empty stools. Typical for a Sunday night. The bathroom was dimly lit, yet I still make out my face in between the rust spots in the mirror. I splashed cold water on my face and took a deep breath.

Fuck.

 

So I Told This Joke Once…

We should’ve just stayed outside the Irish Pub after last call. It would have made everything easier. I wouldn’t be standing in front of these two girls and their six guy friends, trying to calm down this race war. The tension was like a reverse Native Son situation. Last time I share a joke about a skirt on McKinney ave.

I should’ve seen it coming though. I’m part of the most disposable group of humans. A born Lex Luther everyone loves to hate. According to Rastafarians, I’m the definition of evil. If I was a cop they would riot against me. Apparently I should just accept the societal definition that I’m a raping racist who’s tries to buy his way out of everything. It’s fucked up when you don’t even feel like you fit in where everyone says you should.

But look, I get it. It’s wasn’t the best way to start a conversation, and I should’ve done a better job of reading the room. Lesson learned. It doesn’t matter the original joke I wanted to share was about a privileged BMW princess. This girl just heard what she wanted to hear. She took out all the words of the sentence and just heard “Trash” and flexed her southern muscle.

A couple years back, I would have tried to plead. I’d tell her how my girl is Black, or how I was one of five blonde hair, blue eyed, people living in Miami. But that shit is stupid. The reality is that I’m not arguing with facts. I’m fighting with old memories of high school of thinking you’re not enough. I’m fighting with jealousy of not getting into college you wanted. I’m fighting with the anger of not getting bothered by police officers on a more frequent places. I’m fighting with the constant media stream that reinforces every type of negative stereotype.

Never mind that I grew up in a trailer park and have cigarette scars from my dad. Never mind I grew up in a small town where I had regular run in with the law because my hair was cut in a blue mohawk. Never mind I got picked on for wearing pants that didn’t fit me because they were my brothers. Never mind the media tells me I need to move completely out of the way for everyone else now that I worked hard to barely make the middle class. All that shit is irrelevant.

Trust me, I’m aware. I understand it better than most. The whole world is fucked up. It’s a random chaotic sting of events and most people only care about the shit that directly effects them. That doesn’t mean I don’t care about you, or any of those things that happened to you in your childhood. I just wanted the opportunity to share my humor and try to brighten your day. It’s not just your point of view out there. We’re all scared. We’re all insecure. Everyone is a lot more alike than different. We all feel the same emotions, but justify them differently because the situation is unique to us. It’s kind of funny when you think about it.

All I’m trying to say is, next time hear the whole fucking joke before you crucify me.

Things I have a Better Chance at than Winning the F(r)iction Flash Fiction Contest

-Meet a sane woman off Tinder

-See MSU win the NCAA Tournament

-Have Greg Graffin pull me on stage at the Bad Religion concert next month and let me yell out the “Yah Yah Yah” part on 21st Century (Digital Boy)

-Meet DT and have him not be a dick

Run into Dirk at 7-11 again

-Meet my neighbor at 303

-Move back to Florida

-Actually meet a real person off kik.

-Win the Powerball on Saturday

-Tell everyone to fuck off at work on Monday when I win the Powerball

-Beg for my job back on Thursday when I realize they pay a Million Dollars in increments that make the amount to be less than what I make now

-Actually learn the grammar and spelling rules I should’ve learned in 3rd grade when instead I daydreamed about playing Jimi Fender Strat

-Write a bunch more stories because I actually enjoy it

-Submit those stories to other contests, thus starting a never ending cycle

When You Have to Know

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“So what brought you to Dallas?”

God I hated this question. So inevitable. I’d do everything I could to divert it. Bullshit about the weather, check. Talk about Winona’s come back in Stranger Things, check. But once anyone heard my absence of the over pronunciation of a “TW” sound, it was over. Even if for some reason I walked the tightrope on my date flawlessly and stay away from saying ‘Twelve.’ I’d fuck up somewhere.

“Could you hand me my bag?”

“Wait. You said that weird. Say ‘bag’ again?”

Dammit.

Everything about this question is stupid. It inferred that you had to have something other than your two legs to be here. A reason. And of coarse that reason had to involve some type of monetary gain.

What did she want me to say? On the surface, it makes no sense. I moved from sunny Florida where I had it all. Friends, roommates, a lady with a great rack, a job I was killing it at, and a shitty blog with an actual “.com” name. It all happened in 6 months. Here it’s taken me 18 for the 7-11 clerk to know my name. But that’s what happens when you chase a dream. That’s what happens when you spend every last dollar because you have to know. No one realizes how much the ‘you‘ gets emphasized. Especially after the rest of it doesn’t work out.

Even as I answer, they look at me bright eyed, then switch to concerned like I’m a cancer patient. Sympathy and gleam in their eyes like that says “Ah, this is why we don’t do that huh.” I guess. Whatever I’m okay with being crazy. The weird one for going after something I wanted to do since 8th grade. I tried being happy saying ‘Welcome to Macy’s! Can I help you find anything?” I just wanted more. Always have. I have dreams, and follow them. I need help, and find answers. I don’t care where it takes me. I don’t care if I go broke. I don’t care if I don’t have any friends. I don’t care if the only thing that keeps me sane is a string of words written on the back on a napkin. At the end of it all, I just have to know.

“Just work.” I said.

“OMG I know just what you mean! I’m originally from the suburbs but they gave me so much more money to move here and I was like ‘DUH Stacy! you’d be stupid not to go'”

“Yea, exactly”

Fucking March

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I had my shoes kicked up on the desk. Phone out. Relishing in the bliss of what was suppose to be a chill holiday week.

“Hey Darby! So I was thinking about the ECO-proposal and did you add in extra time for the SCADA integration.” He said

I fumbled my phone to my pocket. “Jeez you scared me boss. I thought you were talking the week off?”

“Err yea had a change of plan. My son isn’t coming until later this week. Anyways, I talked with Bill this morning and he told me they have to push signing the contract until after March. So I was thinking….”

Dammit. This was it. Here was the writing on the wall. He kept jawing but lost me. Our last meeting still fresh in my mind. March was the when we’d determine if there was an encore performance or not. Whether the band gets to stay together or one of us flies off the rails. Gets addicted to heroine. Just a little bit at first cause this engineering stuff is stressful, but hey, he’s still producing, so no one notices. Then things go bad to worse, drafters are finding needles near the plotter. Mark hasn’t shown up for weeks. And some guy named T-bone keeps showing up and hassling the receptionist. “I’m sorry sir, but like I said, we’re an Engineering firm. We don’t sell dishes here.” “NAH bitch da FUCKIN CHINA! Tell ’em debts need to be PAID IN FULL!”

I knew it. This project was too good to be true. The president’s old drinking buddy from Florida was over his head with this power stuff and needed our help. We’d send the proposal and just before signing they’d want more work from us. “Could you add an extra high side breaker?” You bet your sweet ass we can. But when it came down to it, they were no different from the fat kid at the bike shop. They’ll try every bike but we both know they aren’t buy anything.

“Okay, I get right on that for you,” I said.

He walked away. “Thanks Darby!”

I pulled up Microsoft Word and began typing.

“Objective: Personable leader looking to acquire a challenging position….”

God I sound like a douche on paper.

Feel Better?

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“So does that make every feel better?”

Duh fuck kinda question was that. This meeting was about as useless at Marilyn Manson’s tits. Like shit, we all got it when Caitlyn Jenner got Tits. She’s actually Trans. You know, a WOMAN trapped in a MANS’s body. A victim. But Marilyn had no inclination of even considering the possible operation. He still wanted to battle his silicone orbs with Rose McGown’s real mountains while his throbbing rod scraped her inside walls back and forth. Fucking useless.

This was suppose to be a meeting where we clear the air about all the bullshit going on. About how tomorrow we have to go into a bigger meeting with the head honcho’s and explain why everything is not my boss’s fault. This was suppose to be a meeting where they would tell me I could stop using my personal computer for work because our IT department can’t figure out how to stop ransomware attacks. This was suppose to be a meeting about how I was going to be compensated for the 12 hours days I worked extra, the several holidays I came in the dead office to play on AutoCAD, or the seven day work weeks, or how I was going to lose all my vacation time because I didn’t get to use it this year.

Instead he began the meeting by telling us he laid off the most senor employee in our group. He said his head wasn’t ever here. Watching too many soccer games, did him in. But no mention of the fact he uprooted his entire family 400 miles, and the pain and suffering it caused his socially awkward son to fight the gauntlet of making new friends, because obviously his brain wasn’t ever here. The last punch was when we were given three months. Only three months for more work to start picking up before more layoffs began. Until the end of the first quarter he said, then the higher ups will start looking to make cuts. So for three months we’re all enemies. The office has now turned into a brutal game of Corporate Survivor for who can outwit, outlast, and out kiss the most ass of the higher ups. DO YOU HAVE WHAT IT TAKES DARBY? Can you get on your knees and start slobbing the corporate knob so you can pay the bills in the apartment you never get to see?  Stay tuned.

I also found out we’ll be switching to Dunkin’ Dougnuts coffee in the break room, so there’s that.

Featured Blogs that Get More Views than Mine: Become a Civil Engineer

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The other day I was peering around the reader and came across this gem of a site entitled “Become a Civil Engineer”.

Being in this field, I decided to see what insightful knowledge I might have missed on my journey.

I clicked on the first article entitled “How to become a Civil engineer”. Not to my surprise it was a load of horseshit. Like literately I could gain more knowledge from looking at horseshit on the subject because I could at least understand something about soil, which I’m not sure if the author know, has something to do with being a CE.

The article comes out swinging “What do I do in College to prepare to be a civil Engineer?” Basically you spend the two years dicking around with easy classes that you should’ve already took in high school but said fuck it. Why would anyone take the hardest fucking classes in the last year? I mean for fuck sake you have to apply for colleges, figure out financial aid, play sports, find time to drink, tell the one girl you like how you really feel about her because she’s talking about going to MSU and you know there is no way you can get in. So you end up fucking yourself playing catch up for the next two years. Your poor but you at least have some some sort of social life. Then you finally get into your major and your class size gets microscopic. It’s harder to sleep. All the profs know your name. You sit through retarded four hour lectures about how cement dries. All the girls that were there a year ago are gone. Poof! Vanish into Supply Chain. Mother Fucker, this is ENGINEERING. All you have are trogliadies that are either named Helga or speak some crazy foreign language you can’t understand. Your social skills go to shit because your constantly alone, listening to broken English, and conversing with people on the spectrum. All you talk about is how to change something from the time domain into the frequency domain in order to obtain an understanding about ferro-resonance. Finally the day comes where you start sitting in for interviews and your pissed when they ask, “So what are your hobbies outside of Engineering?”

“What is the Job potential and pay for civil engineers?” GREAT! it says with demonstrative writing. Great is subjective statement. Great is what you tell your waitress when she interrupts an important part of the conversation to tell you about the desserts, which apparently are also “Great”. Great is what you tell your girl after it took her 45 minutes for you to splooge man mayo in her mouth. Great is also the word you say to yourself when the feeling of her sandpaper lips constantly interrupt your fantasy of the chick in Yoga class with the green Nike sports bra. But you don’t tell her, because, WELL DUH, you still want to keep receiving more. Bad head is greater than no head. The reality of Great is you make a bad ass GROSS salary. Shit anything is better that 7.25 an hour. After student loans, 401K, health, dental, taxes, apartment, electric, moving, you realize you make only $300 more than you did before school. Not to mention, they own you know.  Salaried employees never get overtime. You work weekends and holidays. You’re cubical becomes your home. Oh you had plans to play soccer this weekend? Sorry but we’re sending you to bum fuck Oklahoma to get yelled at in the Oil fields by meth heads with 4 teeth who make more than you, know more than you, but still jealous of you because your job has more social status then theirs.

“What are the different things I can do in a Civil Engineering career?”  Apparently there are seven disciplines but none of which get listed. I’ll help you out; googling calculations, getting training about how to do calculations, getting yelled about about how these calculation are wrong, correcting the calculations, submitting these calculations, getting yelled at about how these calculations won’t work in the real world by field employees, getting thrown under the bus about these calculations, and learning how to cover your ass so you don’t get thrown under the bus anymore about wrong calculations. The last one is the most important. Because no one does real work. Successful fokes don’t do real work. Wanna be successful? Just learn how to take credit and pass blame. It’s white collar 101. I was a dumbfuck in college and took English instead.

Summary: 8 out of 10. I’d visit it again.

Just Another Day at the Office

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I got back to my desk with a post-it note staring me back in the face. It was barely legible with the chicken scratch all over it but I already knew what it said. I grabbed the notebook and a pen like I was told to do the day before and walked down the hall. I had taken so many notes earlier, I considered grabbing another but I didn’t want to appear like an overachiever at this point in the game.

“Hey! Close the door and have a seat!” The jolly voice said to me. Everything was neat in his office, except for the pile of paper work on his desk. They were all from me the day before though. Classic HR shit. He began to dial the number on the phone written on the screen. The phone rang out, “Enter the meeting Id number.” Mike began scurrying around, “Oh geeze, what was that number?” From the few times I’ve met Mike, he seemed like he would be a good boss, although he did have his John Candy moments.

Beep Boop Boop Beeep BEEEP. “Now entering the meeting, there are currently 12 participants.” Mike got loud, “Who’s on the call?” Various names came across the loudspeaker. “Fantastic! Mike and James are on here too!” Well everyone, I called this meeting to discuss the current issues on project 113457. “It’s about time!” and Angry voice chimed in. “The reactor’s are late, the drawings are FUCKING wrong, and WE WANT ANSWERS!” Mike responded, “I completely understand. This is why I have James with me, so we can both handle this types of questions.” I looked over at Mike and he was drawing random spirals in his notebook. “I’m going to let James take it from here. What did you find out about the Reactors?”

I was in complete disbelief, this was my Third day.

And it was all too clear why I was hired.