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A cockroach in captivity

At 8:30 this morning — coincidentally, about the time I’d usually be punching in at the office — I stood naked, clicked my electric clippers on, and began shearing myself. Crewcut the top, as always, and then the beard too, which hadn’t been trimmed since hellifIknow. It was getting quite tangled and came down to my nipples before the clippers; now it’s down to the Chronicle spread out on the floor.

Then I mowed the beard further and haphazardly, with scissors, bringing it down to a messy, uneven stubble. It's mildly repulsive, which suits me. I don't much care how it looks. The goal was only to reduce my shampoo time in the shower.

♦ ♦ ♦

On my walk to the movies, four teenage boys came side-by-side toward me on the sidewalk, leaving no room for anyone else. What’s a fat guy to do? I walked into one of them, toppling two.

I will not yield to people who won’t share the sidewalk, but I ranted about that a few months ago (July 23), and I don’t do reruns. My point here is only that any of those kids probably could’ve beaten all life and soul out of me, so maybe Dr Randall (Nov. 15) is right about my precarious mental health.

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There were laughs at a non-comedy second-run discount double feature at the St Francis. Both movies were kinda dumb, but that's OK. That's what I was expecting, and the popcorn was good.

The Specialist has leading actors who rhyme — Sylvester Stallone and Sharon Stone. They're almost playing parodies of their movie star personae, but the movie isn't clever enough to be doing that on purpose. Things crackle to life briefly whenever the bad guys — Eric Roberts, Rod Steiger, and James Woods — are on screen, then everything's dull when we see the leads again. 

I don't understand why Steiger is or was a big star; he’s always seemed meh to me. And it’s a mystery why Roberts isn’t a bigger name; he’s reliably interesting in everything he does, certainly moreso than his sister. Woods is Woods, an actor who's so good in creepy roles, you gotta suspect he’s creepy in real life, too.

Then it was Harrison Ford in Clear and Present Danger, which I can only guess must be science fiction. Posit an honest man in a government job, and OK, I’ll buy that. Say he’s an honest man in a high-ranking government job, well, that seems unlikely, but it’s a movie so let’s do the “suspension of disbelief” thing. But tell me there’s an honest man who’s Deputy Director at the CIA, and that his boss, the CIA Chief, is also an honest man? Well, clearly this story is set on some other, very different planet than ours.

I’ll give Clear and Present Danger points for hinting at the futility of the endless “war on drugs,” and it shows a fictitious President who's corrupt like every President undoubtedly is, but the blatant bullshit about integrity at the CIA is morally nauseating. 

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Reaching for a zine I’d read and wanted to review, I shook a roach off it, then lifted my shoe to squish the bug on the floor. The roach, though, darted inside an empty plastic case that once held a cassette tape, and was lying nearby, slightly ajar. I gently tapped the case with my toes, it audibly snapped shut, and now I have a cockroach in captivity.

It's on the window sill at the moment. Hello, little buddy. Eventually it’s going into the microwave or the freezer, though, because I don’t like cockroaches so it’s gotta die.

♦ ♦ ♦

Yeah, sigh — I rewrote the Twisted Times piece … again. After reading and re-reading and editing and re-editing it for another hour, I printed it out for the third time. Re-reading the printout, I still wanted to remove or replace a few sentences that seemed awkward on the 44th readthrough, but at some point ya gotta say screw it, so I crammed the page into an envelope and mailed it to Stuart.

From Pathetic Life #6
Monday, November 28, 1994

This is an entry retyped from an on-paper zine I wrote many years ago, called Pathetic Life. The opinions stated were my opinions then, but might not be my opinions now. Also, I said and did some disgusting things, so parental guidance is advised.

Pathetic Life   

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