Monday, April 27, 2009

New York was Cool; Hope I Didn't Cause an International Incident on My Birthday.

Went to New York this weekend. It was awesome. I ate and drank all sorts of treats (the Vietnamese just might have overtaken the Cubans in the great sandwich wars), saw this really cool lounge singer/comedian guy, hung out with some good friends, put an old French lady in the hospital, got some culture and learning at some museums, yeah, New York, that town really has its stuff together. If you get a chance, book a flight right now, because - what's that? Oh yeah, the French lady.

I rented a bike on my birthday and my friend Curt took me on this long tour through Brooklyn. It was awesome. We went through all these cool little neighborhoods and parks, went over that bridge from "Once Upon a Time in America," rode to Coney Island like in that Ramones song, and just had a great time. I got to see all sorts of cool stuff, like this:

And the opening shot of that old "Barney Miller" show.

We crossed over to Manhattan in the early afternoon. We were going pretty fast in the bike lane through all this crazy traffic, and Curt had been warning me all day to watch out for people opening car doors into the street, so I was being pretty safe and paying attention.

Then this old French lady materialized right in front of me in the bike lane.

I didn't have time to slam on the brakes or swerve or anything really and the next thing I know I'm on the ground. I ask the woman if she's alright and I go to put my bike on the sidewalk when some dudes say, "Where do you think you're going? You're not going anywhere."

"Yeah, I'm not going anywhere," I said a little more forcefully than usual. "I'm just putting the bike up on the curb. I thought New Yorkers were all blase about people getting stabbed and mugged and stuff, somehow my accident happens in front of Batman.

Now if professional wrestling and shennanigan-related incidents have taught us anything, it's that cuts to the head will produce a whole lot of blood. So she didn't look good. She also got a pretty good shiner. By the time I was up the paramedics had been called and some of the crowd had sort of patched her up with some napkins. She didn't speak any English, and her daughter didn't speak much more, so that didn't help, either.

The paramedics examine her and take one of the napkins off her head. I was sort of wondering how bad it really was when I see this massive patch of blood and flesh. Holy crap, I really hurt her, I thought. Then I realized that that was just a napkin underneath the other one that had soaked up all the blood. She had a small cut and seemed to be OK from what everyone could make out what with the language barrier and all, but she went off to the hospital for stitches or catscans or whatever anyway.

I dealt with the cops who were pretty cool about the whole thing. I got an incident report that I have to call about in case anything else happens. I really wanted to take some photos, but I figured that wouldn't be too cool, so I only snapped this one on the sly:

And that's how I spent my birthday. I hope she's feeling better and this didn't color her impressions on her American vacation.

So remember, always wear a helmet and look both ways before crossing the street.

By the way, uh...does anyone know anything about ribs? Mine still sort of hurt when I breath in deeply.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Shoe Business

I will hold on to some shit long after I should get rid of it. I wouldn't really say I'm a packrat, more cheap and lazy. Case in point, check out these shoes I've worn for the past two or three years.

They're my working in the yard/working on the house/riding my bike shoes. Of course, since they're usually right by the front door, I'll usually slip them on to go to the store or whatever. At least I used to. Now that I'm single, I have my manservant dress me to the nines before leaving the house. I can't be too careful, you know.
Since I wear them riding my bike, I also wear them to work, hiding them under my desk so nobody can see them and take up a collection for me to buy some decent footwear.

Now usually this would be a case of my cheapness controlling me, but I think in this case it's more laziness winning the day. I mean, I'd have to get in the car, drive somewhere, look at different shoes, wait for them to tell me if they have them in my size, Jesus, I don't have all day. And sure, I could order them online, but then I'd have to hunt around for my wallet, find my credit card, search around online trying to find the cheapest price, then waiting like 3 weeks for my shoes to finally show up.

But I finally took the plunge and threw them out. I think the fact that the one on the right there is about to turn into a sandal or flip-flop (two shoes that a grown man should never wear. And yes, I realize that taking fashion advice from the guy in the shoes from the Crimean War doesn't make a lot of sense).

My new footwear, made only of the rarest and most endangered of animals, should certainly make up for the years of flopping around in those things around town.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Neither a Mover or a Shaker

Waiting to leave work Monday night I see a couple co-workers passing around the newest "Library Journal."

"Did you know you're in this?"

"Who, me? Get out of here."

"No, seriously, look. See, honorable mention, 2008's Mover and Shaker."

"That can't be me. It's gotta be my nemesis, that Dilbert guy. Wait, Jacksonville, Florida. That's gotta be me."

I didn't know they gave out awards for playing on the internet at work, but I was certainly going to accept. And you know, after thinking about it, it's about time I got recognized for my work. Maybe it was for my kick-ass ordering. Maybe my programs. Possibly my firm, yet loving guidance over my staff. Whatever it was, I totally deserved it.

Oh, things are going to change from now on. Boring staff meeting? "I don't need this, I'm Library Journal's 2009 Mover and Shaker!" Transfer me to another branch? "Do you really want to transfer Library Journal's 2009 Mover and Shaker to a branch? Do you realize what my friends in the ALA are going to say?"

I wonder if I get any money with this award? Maybe a new car? Hell, even an amazon gift card would be nice.

And I'd be dropping that little nugget around women all the time. I mean, if that doesn't impress the ladies, I don't know what will.

The next morning I'm making a copy of the page to send to my parents and grandmas when I notice that I was being recognized for nominating someone else, not for any moving and shaking I did. Yeah, I was still up there at the top of the page, but that's a whole different thing.

So when did they stop teaching reading comprehension in library school?

Thursday, April 2, 2009

You Old Fish-Eyed Fool

Last week at the library I notice this skinny youngish black guy with prominent five o'clock shadow wearing a floral print dress, cardigan, a short black wig from 1963 or so and house slippers. The outfit was clean and I really gotta give the guy props for the thought that went into it.

But one thing was bugging me. Who did this guy look like? I chewed this over all day until it finally hit me. Aunt Esther!

This guy was such a fan of Fred Sanford's nemesis on "Sanford and Son" that he assembled a whole outfit in homage to carry out his craziness for the day. Crazy Aunt Esther guy, we need more crazy people like you. Anyone can be a crazy guy in sweatpants and a T-shirt, but to really kick it up a notch, you gotta coordinate and think ahead.

And you know you've seen a bunch of craziness at work when you see a guy dressed up like Aunt Esther and the first thing you think isn't "Holy crap! That dude's dressed like a 1972 grandma," but "Huh. I wonder who that guy reminds me of."