Nutshells

I promised depth and here it is, but i confess, I am a little out of it…my depth I mean, because i am reading The Universe in a Nutshell, and unfortunately my old physics teachers apparently taught me nothing…maddening because apparently nothing is at it seems, everything has multiple possibilities, and we don’t really know anything for sure, which is so much more exciting.  One thing I did learn today: in Newton’s world instead of the apple falling smack down onto his head it was just as possible that the world, with Newton on it, flew smack up into the apple.  Of course, that theory would have worked best for Newton if the world really was flat, which i suppose we have come close to proving is not true.  I also learned that microwaves are the cosmic background radiation emanating from the big bang (if you believe in that of course)…they pervade the universe, all at a constant temperature, with only small variations of a thousandth of a degree which have been mapped and show wrinkles in time.  And all this time a machine that somehow harnesses these amazing things has been sitting on my kitchen counter, and I have simply been using it to bake potatoes, I clearly need to spend a bit more time understanding the mechanics of my kitchen appliances.

I think i need to read about 10 additional books to understand anything else of what I’ve read today, if anyone can explain such things to me I will invite you out to coffee.  I’m off now to play soccer and try and break some of the outdated laws of physics with my newfound undertanding of strings and quanta and the voluptuous curves of the space-time continuum…

I shall let the stupidity of the following speak for itself…

This is from last weeks downtown news…and we call ourselves a worldclass city!  I shall write more about depth later, i suddenly got hungry.

Unacceptable Employee Behaviour

Today in my alter-ego role as mild mannered and caring supervisor, I received an important invite to a one day seminar, entitled

How to Deal with Unacceptable Employee Behaviour

Curious to find out what Unacceptable Employee Behaviour was (in my experience this is actually a much more common failure among supervisors and I know lots about that), I read on.

Apparently Unacceptable Employee Behaviour falls into categories of clearly recognizable types. You have to love that, it’s always great to find new stereotypes and label people by them, it makes this crazy world so much easier to understand and deal with unaided by medication. I offer these labels to you as a gift of hope, to classify your Unacceptable Employees or perhaps even yourself as the first step in overcoming denial and finding help before you get fired. They are:

1. The Excuse Artist
2. The Short-Changer
3. The Intimidator
4. The Gossip
5. The Clod
6. The Downer
7. The Minimalist (a nice artsy ring to that one!)
8. The Soap Star
9. The Itch
10. The Smarty-Pants

Am I definitely a Short-Changer? I suppose Soap Star is not quite the same as porn star so that’s not right, I am an artist but without excuses, I prefer speed to Downers, and love getting my back scratched but haven’t much in common with the Itch. I have been known to kick both Clods and Gossips, with cleats on. While wishing for my ego’s sake I were the Intimidator or the Minimalist, alas, I have found myself to be the proverbial Smarty-Pants – though i’ve been desperately trying to avoid that title since grade school where it generally meant getting pounded. Of course, even though I have frighteningly become what might be termed management, I still believe in “challenging management authority openly and forcefully” which has led to some interesting conversations with myself. I don’t believe an “undercurrent of anti-management chatter” to be too harmful, so maybe as a bonafide grown-up being a Smarty-Pants is not so bad, though I might not fit in so well at the local dive bar if it should become public. Luckily no one there can read as far as I can tell. If you tell, that makes you a Gossip, and you know what happens to them…

What is your Destiny?

I got this in the mail today

Who are you? Where are you headed? What should you be doing with your life? Tickle’s free Whats Your Destiny? test will answer these questions and more.

…Here I am supposed to go to their website to find out what careers will fulfill my destiny and what famous people share my life’s path.  I’m choosing to believe it is Jon Stewart and Beckham rather than find out the bitter truth…

Now that you’ve glimpsed your shiny future, how about some insight into how to get there most successfully? Plot your perfect course with help from a free sample Life Path Reading.

How do they know that my future is shiny?  Honestly.  I could just as likely get hit by a truck carrying live chickens tomorrow on my bike and die in a cloud of feathers in front of Bark Avenue, the new gentriferific drop-off-your-dog-so-we-can-babysit pet spa in the neighborhood for yuppies who are too busy to have dogs and thus have discovered a new way to waste some more money. They are also too busy to figure out for themselves what their destiny is, or put more thought into it than a quick survey, and perhaps a self help book or two.  Still, I wouldn’t put myself in the hands of anyone named Tickle.

So I, the great master Arg, after years of transcendental meditation and a short stint as an ornamental hermit in the wilds of Norwich, am offering a short workshop on your destiny, fate, and eventual tragic death.  I prefer the zen method, where I will beat you about the head with a knobbly stick until you reach some kind of awakening.  It will be a gritty and “real” experience strong enough to break through the layers of supeficiality, faux-culture, and botox that you have been daily building about yourself to actually preserve you from your destiny.  All are welcome to join me at this workshop, but you have to be rich.  And pay in cash.  Please inquire for more details.

Arg vs the oppossum, round 2

As you might have guessed, I didn’t stop feeding my cats. I have three, which is probably two cats too many. The first, Micros, I brought home from the pound as a source of unconditional love and affection without slobber or too much responsability. She is performing admirably. The second, 28, I rescued from the basement of the building I was organizing at the corner of 28th and Maple. The veterinary assistant sniffed and would not believe that 28 was his name, but after I had forced her at knife point to write it down on the form she told me it wasn’t a very good name. Like I care. The third cat, Frida, is the punk anarchist from work who refused all instruction, so she was fired (fucking establishment) and someone had to take her. She is twice the size of my other cats, eats about four times as much, and has long white hair which clings to my person throughout the day. I hope to shave her this weekend in an attempt to find out how big she is without fur, create a conversation starter at cocktail parties, and improve my professional appearance. She does not run, she galoomphs, and i once saw her galoomph 50 feet across the office at breakneck speed only to run bang on into a table leg. It’s a special kind of cat can do that.

So you’d think a small opossum would be no trouble, wouldn’t you? Three cats led by a furry little superhero…one rodent, not good odds those. Unfortunately my cats are a group of lazy, good for nothing, lilly livered cowards who busied themselves in calmly pretending that the opossum did not exist, even when it was clearly scrabbling against the bedroom window, somehow trapped INSIDE my room between the glass and the blinds. Had it been a poor defenseless moth now, that would have been another story. Being that it was 3:37 am, i could think of nothing more effective than opening the window and poking the rodent a couple of times. No effect. I took another picture which at the moment is marooned on my work computer but it should be up soon. I poked the rodent again. I then tottered back to bed to ruminate over the strange and stubborn character of your garden variety opossum, utterly unknown to me before now. Some time later i heard a soft thump as he gently fell out the window, and I knew the battle was won for moment, but I also knew he would be back. Oh yes. He would be back.

As an arch-nemesis the opossum deserves a name, but I haven’t yet hit on one suitable, let me know if you all think of one. But rest assured that a plastic trash bin and a broom are now at the ready by the bed, and I shall carry the day…

Here’s the picture, please notice his shifty eyes and disdainful smile…

Arg and the opossum

My first adventure…so, as some of my ardent fan base may know, i baked cookies yesterday, and put them on a plate on my table beside an open window for a photo-op like so:

Well, about 1 in the morning as I was in that nice and warm halfway place between sleep and dreaming I suddenly sat straight up in bed remembering the blasted cookies left on a plate on my table in front of the open window. So throwing my robe over my jim jams I rushed to their rescue

I had sleepily placed about half of the cookies in a tin when my eyes, drawn by a strange sense of animal magnetism I have never yet felt, were drawn slowly to my left, where with a small cry of astonishment I found a large rodent regarding me steadily, and his beady black eyes locked with mine in a primal contest for domination as my mind feverishly considered his species. Since he was sitting up regarding me and had not moved for what must have been a minute entire I discarded rat and landed upon opposum. I forfeited the stare down in a desparate rush for my camera…just imagine the possibilities of a photo of an opossum sitting calmly in my dining room chair….i returned sadly to find him disappearing out of the window, though I confess after pondering the logistics of forcibly ejecting an opossum from my house i was happier about his exit than not. Back at the Arizona homestead we had a special plastic trash bin with high sides that was perfect for scooping up unwanted visitors with some small help from the broom, upon which they could be deposited at a distance from the house. Perhaps in a later episode I will say more about all of the exciting critters i have ejected from my room, but I found myself woefully unprepared now that I’m in the big city.

The good news is that the little guy did not go far…I think all in all I prefer the animal kingdom to show me a little more fear and respect, but here he is, hanging upside down to my great joy! Just outside my window he was, probably waiting for me to back away slowly from the cookies.

And as I contuned to shoot pictures he grumpily moved along at a slow and diginified pace so here’s another shot:

I have to say the one eye-opener of the evening, is that my cats just sat around and watched the whole time. I’m going to have to stop feeding them.

Rent your own Hermit

This book is brilliant! I am learning that back in the day wealthy Englishmen actually hired hermits to come live on their lands in specially created faux ruinous grottoes, adding a picturesqueity (I made that word up, but super muppets are allowed to do that), and a certain special something which must have been above and beyond the smell…just imagine…a steady income AND no more wondering what to wear today, no more cooking, no more shoes, no more dental floss? Paradise I say, I might even have time between prayers and the 5 hours of required crazy talk about the coming apocalypse to live my dream of teaching a crew of black squirrels to sing Beethoven’s fifth while dancing the cancan. To be honest, I don’t like bathing in cold water which could be something of a challenge, but a hermit’s idiom requires dirt so I think I’ll be fine.

I can submit a resume and references to anyone who is hiring, and I’ll even buy my own plane tickets…my motto is, *have bible, will travel*, so text me!

Hockogrockle and the Wambling Trot

Arg here again, i am not yet having amazing adventures, this comic thing is a lot harder than i thought, so y’all just have to settle for funny pictures.

So, anyhow, i was reading this book, and yes, i do read books without pictures in them, just don’t tell anyone, its a bit embarrassin for an American and all that, but I found out that in the not too distant past people suffered from illnesses such as “the Strong Fives, the Marthambles, the Moon- Pall, and the Hockogrockle.”  What are these diseases and how do I contract one???  Unfortunately my book skimmed over these delightful pieces of eccentricity without delving deeper into the mechanics of experiencing them for oneself.  I am particularly interested in succumbing to a bad case of the Hockogrockle, imagine me calling into work…my only sadness is that i would not be able to see my boss’ face as i told her the heartbreaking news.  The thought sends shivers of anticpation down my spine and a slight fit of the giggles.  It might give me a week or two to work on my adventures without distraction or emergency of any kind.  As long as it does not involve too many extended visits to the bathroom (the Wambling Trot gives that distinct impression, i don’t think i’d like that one!), it would also add an air of distinction to my medical record that cat scratch disease could hardly compare to.  So, if anyone out there knows of these diseases, or by great luck has one, you are invited to get in touch.

Just communities, just cities, Just connections between country and city. Also, the weird and wonderful.