Monday, May 24, 2010

Dear John

I can see the tops of the trees
As the dog howls to my right
Down, down, down
In the hollow


And the fox's mating call beckons him
These mountains twist the sounds

And I can see the tree tops
Through wavy glass
Old with age
Victorian elegance by the wayside
As the fox's love song makes my stomach churn

Oww oww

First Day of CPU^2 Training

I almost named this entry "The First Day of the Rest of My Life," but I'm hoping to go back to school at some point in the near-ish future, so let's hope that doesn't apply. Although, I must say, if school ever becomes a moot point, believe me - this is where I'd be. Benefits. Lots of them. And a living wage. Lots of breaks. A big comfy chair. Nobody yelling at you, except customers. And even then, who cares? I'm not working for tips. Yell all you want to. I'll take it with a big grin on my face and a fat paycheck in my pocket. I get free samples of stuff. I get to wear whatever I want. I am so pumped. Oh man. Life is good.

And did I mention I don't get pre-chewed food all over me? Or gross day-old ranch dressing down the front of my non-existent apron? If somebody here makes a remark about my ass, I can have them reprimanded. Try pulling that one at ANY of my past jobs.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Friends with Benefits

Poncho will be eligible for his full-time benefits package through CPU2 on July 5th. And I, -oh boy, oh boy, - will be eligible for MY full-time benefits package on September 6th! That's right, ladies and germs! Meghan got herself a position at CPU2. I start training on Monday. Paid training. $10/hr. Full-time. The hours I work every week will be between 30 -40. I will get my schedule 2 weeks at a time. I am so psyched. INSURANCE! I'm going to get insurance! In three short months. They also have a 401K and paid time off and all sorts of management opportunities.

I'm so pumped.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Grumblings and Other News

I was called in to work yesterday, and I was already scheduled to come into work today, so I only got one day off this week, on Wednesday. I work again tomorrow and also on Sunday, and they always schedule me to work Mondays and Tuesdays... so I'm really just kind of depressed by the thought of how exhausting this next stretch of days is going to be.

The last day I had off before Wednesday was Thursday, last week. I was called in on Saturday, and was already scheduled to work on Mother's Day Sunday. Man, we were SLAMMED on Mother' Day. We were on a wait until 4:30pm. I had party after party. It was crazy. I made a third more than I normally do on Sundays. It was a good day financially.

I miss Poncho. He's at work. We have conflicting schedules right now. I don't much like that. I hardly get to see him. He comes home when I'm asleep, and I leave for work when he's asleep and he's getting up to leave for work right as our lunch rush is dying down... It sucks.

We watched My Neighbor Totoro last night. It was marvelous. I love Miyazaki.

I think I might watch Definitely, Maybe tonight. Maybe. Or I might just play The Sims2.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

The Aquabats! Show

The last time Guy came up for a visit with me and Poncho, he told us something wonderful: The Aquabats! were going to be playing in Carrboro, NC on Tuesday, May 4th at 8:30pm and tickets were something ridiculously affordable like $20 or something. Come to find out they were $17, and I decided that if I had off of work, we would go - Poncho and I. Guy came up with this plan of us all meeting in Greensboro around 6pm and carpooling the rest of the way in the bus he owns to Carborro. Sounded lovely, and we signed up.

Well, Tuesday comes along and I don't get out of work until 3:30pm, and I had to run by Aldi and get some basics we'd run out of - like milk and OJ which we simply cannot live without. Then I dropped all that off at the house and changed out of my work clothes and into concert diggs. I wore my Yo Gabba Gabba tank top and my frayed right-above-the-knee-cap length jean shorts, with my Converse All-Stars with the rainbow shoe-laces. I fastened on my chalice necklace and I was ready to go.

I head out to get Poncho from work, which is 40 minutes away. I grab him, and we kick it into gear down the highway, towards Guy. Towards Greensboro. Towards THE AQUABATS!

We are so pumped.

We played nothing but Aquabats! songs the entire trip down there. We talked about the meaning I found in several of their songs behind the simple, fun lyrics. We listened to Charge! which I don't really care much for, but has a few small gems. Fashion Zombies! is fantastic, and Waterslides! is really sweet. Stuck in a Movie! gives me a headache. These Hot Summer Nights (Can't Last Forever)! is funny and kind of sad and sweet and is a good throwback to their earlier stuff.

We left Asheville around 5pm, and we were supposed to get to Greensboro at 6pm. Nuh uh, not going to happen. It's a 3-4 hour drive depending. We called Guy and gave him the heads up. He - of course - will wait for us to get there. And since the Aquabats! are headlining, surely they won't start playing until 9ish. So we have time, right? Right. And Carrboro is only like an hour from Greensboro, so we'll be fine once we make it to Greensboro, right? Right.

Well, we hit construction traffic. We didn't have time to eat anything. I brought iced coffee, almond chocolate bars, and an apple and an orange for Poncho, and we split the chocolate and coffee and he had the fruit. I had half an order of homefries at work. Amanda ordered some and let me split them with her. But that was at like, 10:30am, and it was almost 6pm, and I hadn't eaten. And I didn't eat anything until the next day. The whole evening was a blur.

So we're gunning it and we blow into Greensboro at like 7:30, which is excellent time for me, but still late. Guy gives us hell for being slackers as we pile into his Echo for the last leg of the trip. We picked up Vegan, a nice kid, and he stuffed a whole roll of bubble tape into his mouth and blew bubbles at passer-by. Adam was the other kid we took with us and he was in a band so we talked music for a little. But mostly, we listed to Streetlight Manifesto and rocked out and I told them about where I worked and about the last Aquabats show I'd been to, in Winston-Salem. And all about how Jimmy the Robot had sung to me, on one knee, holding my hand during one part of the show. And how the Commander had hugged me to his sweaty man chest during a song, and how glorious it was to be alive. And how I'd hung out with all of them afterwards, and they'd signed my Aquabats hoodie. The Commander drew a little face. I remember it fondly.

Well, I'm obviously pumped to be going to this show, and remember the last show just pumped me up even more. But never, in a million years would I have thought that Jimmy would remember me from that show, four years prior. But indeed he did.

The show was fantastic. A good sized crowd showed up. Their was a slam-dance circle. A chick lost a chunk of hair during on of the rowdier bits. They played Pool Party and Pizza Day and Lobster Bucket and Martian Girl and Cat with 2 Heads and it was all glorious. And Lovers of Loving Love and Hello, Good Night and Captain Hampton. Oh man! It was awesome.

We were standing right in front of Jimmy's set up.
He kept locking eyes with me. He lit up every time I laughed, or sang along. It was really precious. Not that I was watching him. I was pretty much glued to the Commander. Who had noticeably lost weight. And I hadn't recognized Jimmy when he walked out to set up his synthesizers. I remembered him looking a lot more like Eaglebones. Who looked a lot like Kyle Olsen. Which kind of freaked us out.

So the show was great. The Commander did a backflip off of the bass drum. I was psyched. He hadn't done a backflip for the last show. It made me really happy to see.

So the show ends and I'm almost cross-eyed from glee. I stand in line at the merch booth to stock up on Bat Gear, only to find out that they don't take credit cards, as their neighbors do, but only cash. So I bought Poncho a shirt that says The Aquabats! love The Aquabats! It was cute. Bright yellow. I brought it outside to him, where he was hanging out with Guy and Vegan and Adam and smoking a cigarette and recounting the awesome-ness of the show. I chime in, of course. We're all geeking out about the amazing-ness. It was lovely.

Then there was this guy leaning on the wall next to me. Real nonchalant. Not imposing. Just kind of chilling. He says "How'd you like the show?" And I responded exuberantly "It was AWESOME!" and I go into all of my favorite parts and gush and gush and gush at this guy. He's not bored, but he's not joining in on my geek-dom, so once I catch a breath in between gushes, I asked him who he was - "So, are you with one of the bands? Or are you a roadie? ...Or something?" He looked at me with a veiled sort of smile, and said, "Yeah."

"So, both?"

"You could say that."


And from there, I just proceeded to talk to him like he was a very chill, very cool roadie. I told him all about the last show I'd been to, and the thing with Jimmy singing to me and how the Commander had lost so much weight and how sad it was that Jimmy seemed to have put all the weight that the Commander had lost on himself. He asked me which album was my favorite and I said Return. I have decided that it's Fury, though. Closely followed by Myths, and then Return and Floating Eye are kind of tied for second place after that, and Charge and that new EP with the Western thing going on are just kind of meh. He agreed with me and kind of chuckled and I started backpedaling and saying stuff about how it's still great even though, blah blah blah, and he's like, "No, it's okay. You're just being honest."

We talked about the sadness of the saxophone incident. I think that's when Guy and Poncho figured out who he was. But I was still clueless. It wasn't until someone else from the band was walking past us and said "Hey, Jimmy, are you coming?" that I had an aneurysm and figured it out.

I walked away, I came back, and I pointed an accusatory finger at him and said, "You're Jimmy?"


"That guy just called you Jimmy."


"You're Jimmy the Robot?"

"Yeah. But I'm just a guy."

"Did you come out here to mess with me?"

"Yeah, even though I really came out to get some air."

I think I might have called him a jerk before I buried my face in Poncho's chest. Some fans came up and asked him for various autographs, photographs, etc. Guy took this opportunity to make fun of me. I was purple I was blushing so hard.

He came back over as soon as the fans had dispersed. So looking back, he must've wanted to keep talking. So, reasonably, nothing I had said before could have been that bad. I was so flustered I tripped over my wording. But we did talk for a while longer. I got a picture with him, so I'll recognize him next time.

The Commander came out and I got a picture with him too.

They started piling into the van to head to ATL for their next show, and we headed out to Guy's Echo. I moaned and groaned the entire trip back to Greensboro. Once we got into my car to finish the trip and head back home again, I changed the music from Aquabats to Beatles. I sang along. I told Poncho to get some sleep. I wanted to be alone. I wanted to hash things over in my head. I was so embarrassed. Mortified. Ashamed. I felt stupid. I just kept thinking of all the stupid things I had said. I turned the music up, rolled the windows down, smoked a clove cigarillo, and wallowed.

I switched it back over to Aquabats when we were about an hour from home. For some reason, the sax and synthesizers sounded louder than normal.

Once we got home and into bed, and I was able to succumb to the exhaustion of being out all night (it was 4am), I dreamed about Jimmy and my humiliation over and over and over again. I woke up depressed. I spent the day killing off Sims.

But you know what? Jimmy the Robot likes me. He sought me out to talk to me. That's really cool. I'm just going to hold onto that. The rest can just fall where it may. Because that's pretty damn cool.