March 9, 2005

Fever Reborn

For the last few weeks our furnace has never been starved for fuel. Hood River has been enjoying its own personal plague, hanging around town like an invisible fog. Its presence makes your skin tingle, like a demon visiting from another astral plane.

And now I am fighting off my own personal case of the Hood River Plague. I caught it a few weeks ago right before my trip to Baja, got over it in Mexico, and returned to town just in time to catch the latest mutation. This thing is wonderful. My brain is slow-roasting in fever while my body is wracked with chills. I took a hot shower the other night, an extremely hot shower, and yet I couldn’t stop shivering.

Nothing ruins your enjoyment of the company of your fellow man quite like being sick in a small town. You know that one of these miscreants got you sick. You know that it’s probably someone you see every day, whether it was someone at work, or the girl at the pizza parlor, or the FexEx guy. Maybe the UPS guy gave it to the FedEx guy as an act of spite, and the FedEx guy gave it to you when he dropped off your new camera. Or maybe he gave it to you at work. Or at the pizza parlor.

Hmm. You seem to see a lot of the FedEx guy. What are you up to? You need to start hanging out at the coffee shop more often.

Whoever it was that got you sick, you probably know them, they probably know you, and you feel affronted that they had the nerve to pass on the misery to you. Share and share alike, certainly, but this is ridiculous.

What’s more, the world becomes instantly unbearable. The floor is too hard. Footsteps are too loud. The air makes your skin itch. Everything is irritating, but nothing is more irritating than the people who aren’t sick. I made a foray out to the grocery store to buy a fifty gallon drum of orange juice and was disgusted by what people were doing. A couple in front of me was walking too slow. A guy was buying 36 eggs. Another couple was making out in the ketchup aisle.

For whatever reason, I found these acts inexcusable in my fever-addled state. It makes no sense rationally, but illness and rationality are mutually exclusive. All I want is a clear line from wherever I happen to be standing to wherever the orange juice is. If there are things in my way, whether they be people or aisles or locked doors, they will pay the price of my fury.

The fever gives me powers like you wouldn’t imagine. Have you ever heard of balefire? Do you know how balefire works? Get between me and my orange juice, and you will know it firsthand.

March 6, 2005

I’m Not Dead Yet

The past week has been far busier than this site would suggest. I’ve been enjoying our unseasonably delightful weather, running every day, and hatching hair-brained schemes for the future.

Joe and I plan to summit Mount Hood this weekend, and such endeavors require precise planning done out on graph paper at a table at your favorite coffee shop, which is your favorite only because an incredibly beautiful gal works there. But of course, you have your iPod Shuffle now and have already begun your inevitable withdrawal and subsequent atomization from society, and any conversation about music would have shared no common ground. So all you said was yes to the Rwanda blend and requested room for extra genocide.

You know that useless tiny pocket inside the right pocket of your jeans? The Shuffle fits in there perfectly. It also fits in your mouth, but I doubt people are buying Shuffles in droves because they double as choking hazards. Nope. The appeal must be elsewhere.

I met my friend Will in Portland the other day. I also went to the Bossa Nova and saw a band named marchfourth. marchfourth is what happens when you mix high school marching band, George Clinton and Carnivale. They’re a huge always-on pep band with percussion and a killer horn section, and hula-hoopers and stilts-walkers and fire-eaters.

I was over-stimulated and my head almost exploded. At setbreak I overheard one guy in the audience talk excitedly to his friend about an interpretive-dance version of Dungeons & Dragons. There is so much to this world that I will never fully comprehend. Good thing I’m just along for the ride, having burdened the rest of society with explaining itself.

What else? My “The floor is made of lava!” shirt showed up, and so did the new Winter Songs EP from matt pond PA. My friend Anton introduced me to matt pond PA a number of years ago and they are still one of my favorite bands. Beyond Anton and a couple of my friends, I have yet to meet anyone else who has even heard of matt pond PA.

Apparently one of their songs was played on Orange County. Who knew? I gave away my television. Maybe if I had a television I would know more people who know Matt Pond. Or perhaps I would know Matt Pond himself. He’s probably one of those tiny actors they cram inside the cathode ray tube.

You know what other bands rock? Nada Surf, Juliana Theory and Love Cars. Check ’em out if you haven’t.

I ordered a new digital camera just in time for our trip up Mount Hood. I got the Canon Powershot S500, which is like my old S400 only not wet and not brutalized and not in a hundred tiny pieces. I also picked up an ice axe and some crampons and a climbing helmet. I finally got a kiteboarding helmet too, about three weeks too late.

Oh yeah. Four years of web design have turned my wrists into sad little buckets of misery. It was bad enough for them to make my time in front of the computer miserable, but now they hurt all the time, like when I brush my teeth or slam a tall boy or shift into fifth gear. When that started happening I said enough is enough, and I’ll be seeing a doctor about it tomorrow.

If I’m lucky he’ll leave his meat cleaver at home and let me keep my hands. If I’m not, well, I’m gonna be paddling canoes this summer with liquid metal cyborg hands. A friend of mine says he knows a really good ortho in San Fran, who is totally down with the latest advancements in nanotechnology.

Nanotechnology: It’s gonna save the world. I mean really.

Well. This pretty much covers all of it, except for the really important parts like returned packages, Beer Olympics, and credit card companies whose junk mail takes the guesswork out of identity theft.

Oh. And. I have resolved the issue with the orange cream soda. The correct answer is obvious and exciting.

March 1, 2005

More Noise, Less Signal

Geez the house is making an awful racket. My roommate snores. No, I take that back. My roommate doesn’t snore, so much as his throat simulates earthquakes. Tonight the windows are shuddering. The cat is pitching a fit over something or another, annoyed that he’s inside or outside or fat or not fat enough or something. To me, cats have two moods: living and other. Our furnace is moaning and groaning, demanding that we shovel more plague-ridden bodies into it.

I had a point but I lost it. Hey, it’s a new month! My search referrer strings for the day include such gems as “getting stitches taken out”, “grad school sucks”, “make your own nes cartridge”, “llama omni parts”, “kiteboarding in eden prairie”, and “take this job and shove it literally”. It’s amazing how closely those reflect real life. With the exception of llama omni parts. My iPod Shuffle shipped today, but the llama omni parts are back-ordered until April.

I like to think of search referrers as the magic eight-ball of the oughts. Sometime I may set aside a week and live in whatever direction the search referrers push me. Actually, that may not be far from what actually happens, now, what with quantum entanglement and everything.

I think I need to go lie down.