Old Blog 30

March 29, 2001

Do I seem like the type of person who enjoys bondage and fetish magazines?

I asked the woman at my local bookstore if they still had any remaining
copies of last week's "Entertainment Weekly" (it had a big article on Ed, the best show on television (sorry The West Wing,
though you're second). She looked at me, slightly puzzled, then said,
"excuse me?" So I repeated my request. She looked at me, leaned in,
took off her little granny glasses and said, "S + M Weekly?" She
actually thought I said "S + M Weekly."

It scares me on a many levels: 1.) that she would actually say
this out loud so everyone could hear, 2.) that she knows who I am and
this day, instead of buying Entertainment Weekly or The New Yorker or
Movieline, I'm now buying "S + M Weekly," and 3.) that if there WAS a
magazine called "S + M Weekly," it's scary that it would prove so
popular and info-packed that it would have to come out EVERY WEEK. Not
"monthly" or "quarterly." "There's so many bondage fans out there that
we have to come out every week, yes sir!"

More retail adventures: my mission today, trivial as it may
sound, was to find a Bit O Honey bar. Does that make me old? Should I
be eating more modern, "rad" candy bars? Have I just proven how old I
am by using the word "rad?" I couldn't find any, so I casually asked
the girl stocking the shelves if they had any. She was around 17 or 18,
and didn't say a word when I asked. She just sorta looked down in the
general direction of the candy shelf. Then she said, "is that, like, a
candy bar?" Yes, it's like a candy bar. And you eat it. I explained to
her what it was, to the best of my ability (you try explaining a
non-candy bar candy bar that contains honey and is wrapped in white
paper to someone who was born AFTER Micheal Jackson's "Thriller" came
out). I decided to use a little self-deprecating humor to lighten
things up, so I said "have I just dated myself?" So now this girl
thinks that not only do I like odd, old candy, I also go on dates with
myself. Which, lately, probably isn't too far from the truth.

They didn't have any, by the way, though I finally found some
on the bottom shelf of my local convenience store, collecting dust.

More book news: the deadline for the "order my book and get a
free gift" offer is fast approaching! It's April 1. But if you send me
an e-mail by the 1st saying that you're going to order it in a few
weeks, I'll send you the gift even if I don't have the order in my
hands. I trust you enough. Hey, since you come to my web site and read
my stuff, right? It's the least I can do. I'm just that type of guy.

A bondage-loving, Ed-watching, Bit-O-Honey eating, self-dating type of guy anyway.

early March, 2001 (exact date forgotten)

I'm living with a mouse.

At least I think it's a mouse. The way it sounds, tromping
inside the walls and ceiling of my apartment, it could be a small pony.
I'm not quite sure how the damn thing has lived through the winter.
This is my seventh year in this apartment, and this has never happened
before. In the summer we have a problem with skunks out back, and
inside we have these weird bugs that are a cross between a centipede
(when these bugs are adult) or small worms (when they are youngins').
But the winter has always been animal and bug free, until this year.
Right now he's behind the wall in my office where I am writing this.
He's so close by and loud that I expect to turn around and see him
sitting on top of my stereo, staring at me, thinking, "hey, whatcha
typin?"

The landlord is the second best I've ever had (he can't beat my
mom – he doesn't cook for me or do my laundry). The woman downstairs is
a sculptor (sculptess?), and every other day she uses some chemical
that smells like a mixture of paint remover and model glue. How bad is
it? Well, put it this way: when she works with it, she WEARS A MASK,
next to an open window with a fan in it to blow the stuff outside. It's
probably giving me some sort of testicle cancer or making me grow a
third foot out of my back or something. It's often so bad I can't even
stay in the living room. I have to run into my office here and close
the door to block the fumes.

God only knows how the mouse is living through all this. Or
maybe it's some deformed creature spawned from too much exposure to
this awful chemical. A 1950s B monster living and growing in my walls.
Some combo of mouse, worm, and skunk that will reach full, murderous
proportions by the time summer comes around.

I'll tell ya, if he goes on a rampage in my apartment, I'm still asking for my deposit back.

The movie last night: Detour, from 1945. It's known at
one of THE classic film noirs, and I just happened to notice that it
was on at 3AM on my local PBS station (and, no, I didn't watch it then
– I taped it). It looks like it was made in a week for around $100,
with snaps and crackles on the soundtrack and jumpy edits (and I'm not
sure if this is just a bad print – maybe it is – or how the film was
actually shot). But it has a distinct style and look and narrative that
is more interesting than a thousand Armageddeons or Independence Days. It's the type of movie that people keep saying The Blair Witch Project
is. Except that, well, that movie really sucks. I just did a search on
the IMDb, and I was right: the movie took 6 days to film, and is one of
the "poverty row" films – I don't know what that means but you can bet
it screams "low-budget." Anyway, the film is extremely interesting
(it's one of the few films where most of it is voice-over narration),
has some really intriguing, pulpy film noir dialogue and putdowns that
I'm going to use soon, and the director (Edgar Ulmer) really did an
amazing job, considering what he was working with (great use of the
camera and lighting in many shots – there's real directing going on
here – but also explain to me why I really believe that these people
are travelling across country, even though it's obvious they are in
front of a blue screen, and often the negative seems flipped so the
steering wheel is on the wrong side!). It's only an hour long, so if
you see that it's playing late at night or if you happen to see the
video at your local video store, give it a shot (put back that Adam
Sandler movie).

It's been a stormy week here, though not as devastating as the weathermen predicted. You can read my piece at Ironminds. And thanks to everyone who has bought the book.
Much appreciated. Remember, if you pre-order before April 1, I'll
autograph it and also send you a mysterious free gift! Ooooooooooo!

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