Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Love What You've Done With the Place!

There are things you don't admit to a woman right away.

In fact, there are things you don't ever admit to some women and some women you only admit to once you're good and silly drunk, secure and/or she's seen you in pretty much nothing but a pair of gym socks and not forced liquid out her nose laughing.

I've always had a pretty good sense of style. That's not to say I'm a clothes horse. I dress well but pretty much rely on the guy standards of comfortable things in classic cuts and colors.

I don't drive the sharpest car. It pleases me in that its fast, agile and can pick off slush pumps on most highways with a downshift and blip on the throttle.

And while I don't have original art on my walls, the whole knob and tube palace can be said to be pretty nicely put together with wood floors, faux finished walls, hand made furniture and favorite photos in frames. I gave a party a few years ago and one of my female friends exclaimed that the decor was perfectly metrosexual (this was a few years ago).

Upon hearing this, I threw a football logo blanket on the couch, stuffed some beer cans in the corner of the dining room, belched loudly and made sure there was always an open bag of potato chips on the coffee table.

But none of this is what gets confessed.

Its that you've always known how to put a room, apartment or house together. That you've always been able to arrange furniture, hang art, toss rugs around to make a joint look put together. A theme if you will. For better or worse.

Some have been worse. Right after college I went for the minimalist industrial look. At least that's what I told myself it was until it was revealed to me that it was actually the broke just out of college with student loans on your budget like a fat hooker straddling an anorectic.

Some have been better. There were the "hunting lodge" wall sconces that I put on the last place I lived as a married man. It tied the room together with a certain rustic feel. What emphasized the hunting lodge motif was that I was going up on stuffed moosehead plaque and not the moose. Like I said, it was the last place I lived married.

One of the earliest ventures into Straight Eye for the Straight Guy had to have been when I was, oh, probably around six or seven. That's years. As in old. Yeah, I'm an early bloomer.

I'll preface it this way. The old man used to read Playboy. That's actually comforting in that there's at least one thing I can point to that indicates he had a shred of normality in his otherwise totally fucked up composition. I caught him reading it once. He was sitting in chair, flipping through the pages and when he saw me he flipped to one of the less racy cartoons. I stood there and he nervously flipped to another less racy cartoon. And then another.

I thought he was reading a neat comic book. So I asked him if I could read it when he was done. He grumbled "no" and put it in his desk drawer.

No problem. I revisited the drawer a day or two later and found...


No problem. I was a kid. An only child. Time grew out my ass the way kudzu takes off in a greenhouse. There was a comic book, we lived in an apartment, mom was only too glad to see me off in a corner of the place deeply engaged in something that wasn't a percussion session with cookpots. It was only a matter of time.

The outside storage room hid the comic book. Under a blanket on an old kitchen chair. There was a stack of them and boy, they had all kinds of neat color cartoons in them. They also had something else. Girls. Lots of them. Wearing not a lot. In fact, nothing. And each comic book had one more thing: A poster. It was in the middle of the book, it folded out and there was a girl on it wearing not a hell of a lot. I don't know what exactly I felt about it but I felt strangely warm and happy looking at all these posters. Now there were some comics on the back of the poster but they were a little black and white girl figure and I didn't get the joke even though there were three panels. In fact, I didn't get any of the jokes of any of the cartoons, no matter how hard I tried.

The posters were another thing though. They made me feel warm and happy in a way I couldn't really explain. There was one in particular. She was in a green bikini, standing in a forest, one knee resting on a branch. She had taken her top off and was holding it. I thought it was awful nice of her to have come out all the way into the woods and taken her top off just to make me feel strangely warm and happy. It would be nice to be this warm and happy all the time.

And then I put two essential thoughts together like the way Einstein put energy equaling the speed of light squared together with shoving a frogs mouth full of firecrackers.

Warm happy feeling together with a tied together, thematic room decor. Hell, there were at least seven or eight of these neat posters. Posters were meant to be put up. Let's go to town or in my case, down the hall to my room.

And so it was that my first room was decorated in warm happy naked lady motif. I took down the Aqua Ranger puzzle, the stuffed bear print and put up the Naked Lady posters. All over the room.

In hindsight I am still surprised at the non event this became. Once the room was done and I put the tape back on the old man's desk, I went out to play or some such thing.

When I came back, the posters were gone and Aqua Ranger had returned. Mom was pissed for a few days but strangely not at me. The old man was pissed too but not directly at me. It was the low level pissed that always seemed to be there like big bang background noise.

In fact, if I remember, he let out a few quiet sighs of relief every time I passed by.

Bunny on.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Time's Up

I'm ruminating on time travel this week, wondering if I can go back about eight days and turn in an article I was supposed to write when it was actually timely to the event it was covering.

No, I'm guessing. Sort of like reporting on the weather we had in July. Nice, but nobody really cares. Right now we're feeling fall creep into the weather pattern the way you wake up in your mid forties having to pee a lot at night. The slow unpleasantries of what will be a nasty future.

In the climactic case, winter. In the ageing process, you'll be thankful when you can pee at all.

Time travel is fascinating, alluring, exciting, all at the same time. It's like a date with Natalie Portman, there's virtually no downside. And like a date with Natalie Portman, at least for the crowd I run with, it's well nigh impossible. Might as well hope to sprout wings.

But think about it for a few minutes. The ability to go back in time and correct mistakes along the way. You could whoosh back to age twelve, say, right a wrong and then fast forward through your history righting apple carts back to your original departure point.


"Abraham Lincoln"

"Square root of 62"

"Factor out such that y equals eleven."

"You're not really washing your hair Friday, come on, let's go to the dance."

"Think I'll drop English and concentrate on an Engineering major."

"I'd like to work in your applied solutions department, music's just a cute hobby."

"As a matter of fact, I'd like to object Pastor."

"No, you don't look fat at all. That dress is beautiful."

"I think I'd like a smaller monthly payment, all the same."

You get the point. I was watching "Highlander" the other night, trying to tie this incomprehensible movie into the story assignment I never did finish. Now there's lost opportunity. You think that, somewhere in 1298 he'd figure out that he's been alive some three hundred years and maybe there's a pattern going on. A little advance planning might be in order. You know, lay in food for the upcoming black death, convert to Protestantism early, grab that boat west, buy Apple, ditch the Enron shares. Just something that brushes prescience.

But no. It's 1988 and the best he can do is parking garage decapitations.

This criticism coming from someone who wants to bend the laws of physics in order to have an editor NOT be pissed off.

Always been kind of an underachiever.

Bunny on.

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