TheWVSR.com
JeffKay.com

     

Previous Notes

2007

November
October

September
August
July

June

May

April

March

February

January

2006

December
November
October
 
September

August
July

June

May

April

March

February

January

2005

December
November

October

September

August

July

June

May

April

March

February

January


You don't understand. I'm a mysterious loner, not lonely.

2004

December
November
October

September

August
July

June

May

April

March

February

January


A bowl of corn, motherfuckers!

2003

December
November
October

September

August

July
June
May

April

March

February
January


Is that man-ass I smell?

2002

December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


I'm loaded with tumors darling, and I don't even know it.

2001

December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2000

December
November
October

The View From Down Here
                     
December 2007

 


December 29, 2007

Our Greatest Living Poet: All Hail the King!

-- My in-depth review of National Treasure: Book of Secrets: OK, I guess. 

It was big and loud, and featured plenty of car chases and gunfire and whatnot.
And the story is a fun conspiracy theory, straight off the George Noory radio show. 

I was entertained, but have a feeling I wonít remember much about it in a monthís time. Empty calories, as they say. But, at least Nicolas Cage controlled himself and didnít give his character an annoying twitch or stutter, and thatís always a plus. 

Every time I see that man, I steel myself for yet another novelty ďI am a great actorĒ personality trait. I fully expect him to spend the next two hours blinking real fast, jerking his head to one side for no apparent reason, or displaying some similar irritating and unnecessary quirk. 

But he plays it straight in this one, and I appreciate the kindness.

Continue reading here  


December 27, 2007

The Pocket Guide to John Dillinger

-- Apparently I was a bad boy in 2007, Ďcause Santa didnít grant me my one wish. Nancy and the gang did pass through here while my parents were visiting, but refused to come to our house. Toney met them at Starbucks on Christmas Eve instead, and they exchanged gifts amongst manufactured atmosphere, in front of a crackling ďfire.Ē

Wotta rip-off! Santa knew how much I wanted to see my Dad and Nossy have a conversation. Itís the only thing I asked for this yearÖ 

Iíd like an explanation, I really would. I believe I was pretty damn good this year. Wonder if I have any legal recourse? Wonder if I could force the Santa people to release their papers on the matter? I want to know what they knew, and when they knew it!

Iím seriously thinking about consulting a lawyer.

Continue reading here  


December 26, 2007

Powered by a standard deep-cycle RV battery

-- And weíre back. I hope you guys had/are having a wonderful holiday. Iíd rate ours as nice, I guess. There was a lot of stress up-front, and I was convinced (convinced!) the Secrets werenít getting enough loot. But that just goes with the territory, right? 

As it turned out, the boys seemed to have a great time and werenít disappointed at all. Toney told me everything would turn out fine, that the Secrets were getting a ridiculous number of gifts, and she was right, of course. 

I just always panic at the last minute and want to rush out and buy the kids
one more thing. And Toney has to press a wet cloth to my forehead, hand me a Samuel Adams Winter Lager, and talk me down. 

Itís a Christmastime tradition here at the Compound.

The day my parents arrived was especially hectic. Weíd spent the previous 24 hours running around like mental patients, dusting and cleaning and making the house as close to spotless as it will ever be. 

My Mom and Dad have a home like a freakiní museum, you see, and weíre always paranoid theyíll think we live like straight-up holler trash, because there are crumbs in the bottom of the toaster, or whatever.

Continue reading here  


December 21, 2007

Fan letters to Dairy Queen corporate!

-- I went out yesterday afternoon and got some stuff done, so Iím not quite so stressed today. My parents will be here tomorrow though, and there are still a million or so things left to do. But itíll all work out somehow, right? Iím reasonably semi-certain of it.

The first stop on my Holiday Desperation Tour í07 was the post office, where the Surf Report PO Box is located. Itís over near my old job, and Iím rarely in that part of town anymore. What was once convenient, is now kinda stoopid and out of the way... 

But what are you going to do? No way in hell Iím giving up PO Box
4 ! Iíve never had a number that low before. And Iím not surrendering it.   

By the time I get over there to check it, though, the shit is usually packed solid with Wal-Mart fliers, pizza coupons, pre-approved credit card offers, and pleas for donations from Friends of the Shiftless, or whatever. Occasionally Iíll get lucky and there will be a new copy of
The Inner Swine in there, or a zine from Marc Parker, but usually itís a rather bleak affair.

But the last two times Iíve been pleasantly surprised by gifts from Surf Reporters... And how cool is that? Hm?

Continue reading here  


December 20, 2007

Lotsa fun until the end busts open

-- Yeah, I didnít stay up all night, like I considered. When I got off work I was dragging massive ass, and swerved from side to side as I drove home, like Billy Joel. I was atop the platform before 3:30 , and didnít want to get up in the ďmorning.Ē So there goes seven more hours straight down the olí poop-catcher. Stupid sleepÖ wotta rip-off.

-- When I typed the date at the top of this thing, I felt a twinge of panic. December 20! Sweet sainted mother of Bonnie Franklin!! So much left to doÖ  

This update, just so you know up front, probably isnít going to amount to much. Itís gonna be another edition of A Few Quick Things. And Iím not even sure about tomorrowÖ Iím serious, I need to be out there doing battle with the bastards and the bitches.

-- As mentioned before, I have an unnatural affinity for office supplies. Iíve considered going to a hypnotist about it, but so far Iím just making adjustments and living with the disorder.  Itís how I get through the day. 

But now tragedy has struck. I have two pens I use daily in the bunker, and theyíre both out of ink. Both of Ďem! Just buy more, you say? I tried, but I think it mightíve been discontinued. Iíve looked at Staples and Target and Wal-Mart, and that particular pen is nowhere to be found.

Continue reading here  


December 19, 2007

My Big Fat Hillbilly Wedding

-- I overslept this morning. Yeah, it was technically still morning when I finally hoisted my heft off the raised dormancy platform, but not by much. 

The alarm went off at 10:15
, as usual, but I expertly swung my arm in a high arc and stopped that goddamn chirping. Toney called twice, but the ringer on the bedroom phone is turned off for some reason, and I didnít hear it.

If it hadnít been for Andy (Snoop Manny Mann) flying off the handle at some unforgivable infraction (I think somebody walked past our house), I might still be up there clear-cutting timber. So, thank you Andy, for being crazier than a freakiní bag oí bugs. Sometimes it pays dividends.

Continue reading here  


December 18, 2007

Christmas tree restraint & anchorage

-- Iím starting to get a bit concerned about Christmas visitors. As mentioned earlier, Iím hoping (please God!) that my parents will be here the same time Eninen and their brood of líil translucents pass through town. Even if itís only for a couple of hours, it would be the greatest meeting since Elvis and Nixon, if not chicken and gravy.

But now people are starting to hedge their bets, and tweak their schedules. And I canít have that. The whole holiday will be ruined if Iím unable to witness my Dad and Nossy in the same room, talking. 

Is that too much to ask? I mean, seriously. Perhaps Iíll go to the mall today and sit on Santaís lap, and explain it all to him? Iím sure heíd be able to pull some strings, being Santa and allÖ

Continue reading here  


December 17, 2007

Best headline of the month

-- Yesterday we had what the locals refer to as ďweather.Ē It started out as snow, but later turned into some kind of bastardized mix of snow, rain, and sleet. And it was all moving horizontally, because of the screaming, roof-ripping winds.

Yes, it was a lot of fun. Our power was out for a couple of hours, and the house got cold right now. Even after the lights came back on, the internet and cable were just things to remember with fondness. 

At one point I was actually reduced to sitting in a chair and reading a book! Iím thinking about filing a lawsuit.

Gigantic trees, with root balls (heh) still attached, were tipped over all around the area, some landing on cars, others on houses. And I donít know the details of it, but the local Sheetz curvature-of-the-Earth gas emporium was supposedly on fire at one point. 

Sweet sainted mother of Scut Farkus! It was like the apocalypse up here.

Continue reading here 

   


December 14, 2007

Santa Claus has dainty lady hands

-- Sorry Ďbout yesterday. I tried to write, I really did, but there were so many distractionsÖ

For one thing, the severance pay from my old job wasnít deposited into our account on Wednesday, like it should have been. I didnít think too much about it, occasionally itís a little late. But when it didnít show up on Thursday either, I got concerned.

So I started making phone calls, and nothing I heard made me feel any better. Our credit union saw no pending deposits, and couldnít help me beyond that. I called The Company, and they told me a paper check had been printed and mailed, but they couldnít immediately explain why.

And thatís the part that concerned me the most. I remember somebody saying, back during a previous lifetime, that the first severance check is on paper, and the last severance check is on paper. Everything in between is direct-deposited. And this weekís check is NOT the final payout.

I became convinced they were trying to screw me. I got out the agreement Iíd signed back in March, and itís loaded, simply loaded, with incomprehensible legalese. I have no doubt there are trapdoors hidden in there, and worried I mightíve fallen through one.

Continue reading here  


December 12, 2007

I carry a few everywhere I go

-- When I lived in Greensboro , NC , I walked into a convenience store near my apartment one night, and the cashier said, ďAre you a Jew?Ē

What the? I didnít know how to respond to such a question, so I just told her no, Iím not Jewish.

And she replied, ďOh, I just figured you were, because you have dark curly hair and your nose is kinda big.Ē

Sweet Maria! I didnít say another word; I just paid for my stuff and left. And the crazy thingÖ I donít think she was trying to be offensive, or had any idea she was. I guess she was just stupid? I donít know.

-- My friends and I used to buy beer when we were underage, from a little corner store owned by one of our high school teachers and her husband. Is that not excellent?

One night we went in there and put a 12-pack of Busch (or whatever) on the counter, and the cashier eyed us suspiciously. She was an older lady with a slight accent of some kind (Irish?), a terrifying cigarette hack, and a voice like Babe Ruthís during the final days.

Continue reading here  


December 11, 2007

3 Random Images with Captions

-- During my ridiculous life I havenít had too many serious encounters with cops. When I was a youngling I got into my share of trouble throwing snowballs at cars and letting off firecrackers in department stores, and that sort of thing. But as an adult, Iíve been pretty lucky.

Well, perhaps I should rephrase thatÖ As an adult
before I left West Virginia
, I was lucky. During those years I was a DUI waiting to happen, Iím not proud to admit. After that though, luck didnít have much to do with it. I just behaved myself for the most part, and the boys in blue left me alone. Itís funny how that works.

Today Iíd like to briefly describe the five most memorable Encounters with Cops Iíve experienced so far, and ask for your stories at the end. Sound good? OK, letís get startedÖ

Continue reading here  


December 10, 2007

The internet is a two-sided sword

-- I didnít sleep very well last night. I got home from work around 3:30 am , completely exhausted. But after I climbed atop the dormancy platform, I tossed and turned and thrashed and sighed, for a long time. Then I woke up before the alarm started hollering, for reasons unknown. 

It was slicker than the proverbial cat shit on a marble floor as I was driving, and I was afraid to use our sidewalk when I finally made it home. Itís on a slight downhill grade, you see, and my brain was throwing up red flags as I contemplated my best course of action. 

I had visions of me lying in the front yard until morning, with a pelvis turned to dust. So I carefully navigated the snow-covered lawn instead, and got to the porch without incident.

Usually Andy is barking by this point, but I heard nothing from inside the house. I unlocked the door, and right there, on the floor, was a pool of vomit the size of a serving platter. Simply excellent.

Continue reading here  


December 7, 2007

Constantly ready for a birthday party

-- Happy Pearl Harbor Day! My old boss in Atlanta was big on reminding everyone of this special day, for reasons unknown. Clearly, he had an axe to grind, or some sort of personal investment in it far beyond the norm. And so, every December 7 I think of him reminding us of the attack on Pearl Harbor, before remembering the attack itself.

And in case youíre keeping score at home, this is the same person who said, EVERY SINGLE TIME we had Chinese food for lunch, ďIt doesnít matter which one you order, itíll all end up as #2 eventually.Ē

Just thought you should know.

-- You guys provided me with some good advice yesterday, and I appreciate it. Iíve given up my brief 24-hour fascination with Photoshop, and have completely moved on. Iím now thinking about banking my birthday money instead, and putting it toward a new camera. 

My current camera is a good one, but itís fairly old and only offers-up 3.2 megapixels, or somesuch. So Iíd like to upgrade before our trip in March. Any suggestions on digital cameras in the, say, $500 price range? Iíd be much obliged.

Continue reading here  


December 6, 2007

Drive your taste buds mental!!

-- No beer Ďtil England . Thatís my vow. Iíve set myself some fairly steep goals over the next few months, and Iím also a not-so-jolly fat man. So a temporary moratorium on the golden elixir should help on all fronts.

My last hurrah, as they say, was on my birthday last week. We went to Kildareís, an ďIrishĒ pub, and had dinner. I opted for the shepherdís pie, a Guinness, and a Harp. And when I got home I enjoyed a cuppa two tree Yuenglings in front of the Big Ass Television (BAT).

So there you go. No beer Ďtil England
. Or until I call the whole thing off, whichever comes first. 

And that goes for bourbon, as well. To tell you the truth, this has been the worst Bourbon Season ever. I think we had one small bottle of Makerís Mark back around Halloween, and our hearts just werenít in it. We never re-stocked, or even thought about it much. 

Employment stress drove a stake right through the heart of Bourbon Season í07. Wotta rip-off. Perhaps Iíll sue somebody for infringing on my religious rights? Is Jackie Chiles available?

Continue reading here  


December 5, 2007

Tell us about your crazy neighbors

-- Yeah, itís starting to get to me a little. These new hours, I mean. I woke up this morning in a foul mood, lashed out viciously at Andy (Black Lips Houlihan), and called my coffee cup an asshole.

Iím not really tired, thatís not it, I just feel like somethingís askew, like Iím trudging around in a world thatís
almost familiar, but not really. I havenít seen Toney or the kids since Sunday, Iíve only talked to them on the phone. And I havenít watched a TV news broadcast in days. 

We could be at war with Canada for all I knowÖ

The place I go to do my new job is like a fortress. There are no windows (at least where I work), no internet access (except for the company website), and not even real programs on the TVs in the break room (they show company information and ďcoolĒ trivia instead).

Continue reading here  


December 4, 2007

My bladder is falling out of my vagina

-- A few nights ago we went to dinner at a new Mexican restaurant nearby. Scranton isnít exactly a hotbed of south of the border fare, so we were excited when we learned about this new place opening up.   

Itís advertised as ďauthentic,Ē which sounds good on the one handÖ and not so good on the other. Because, I suspect, Iíve grown accustomed to an Americanized bastard child version of Mexican food, and probably wouldnít care for the ďauthenticĒ stuff.

But the food wasnít the issue; the food was actually pretty good. It was the service that was eating it from the ass-in.

We walked inside this place, and it was absolute pandemonium; it seemed like every table was occupied, and every person in the house was yelling. A strolling mariachi band was moving around the room, strumming tiny stringed instruments like it was an emergency, and just
hollering.

Continue reading here  


December 3, 2007

In celebration of Beulah/Cornflakes

-- One of my biggest concerns about starting a new job, was how it might impact the website. I know it probably sounds crazy, but I was always worried about the hours Iíd have to work, and where I could fit the daily Surf Report updates in there somewhere. 

So Iíd be sitting in these interviews, with our financial future hanging in the balance, thinking: 8 to 5?! Holy shit, Iíll never be able to write again!

I canít get it done in the evening, you see. I donít know why, but it just doesnít work for me. Iím only productive in the morning, after a shower and with staggering amounts of Eight Oíclock Bean Coffee coursing through my veins.

I hated to say it out loud, but I just
knew a strict
8 to 5 schedule would kill off the Smoking Fish. And I simply canít have that. At my old job I was straddling east coast and west coast business hours, with a late start time. It was a perfect situation for me, and something not too easy to duplicate.

So when I interviewed for this new job, and they told me it was a management position on the just-launched
second shift, with full-blown crackpot hours, my eyes lit up. Itís four ten-hour days per week, Sunday through Wednesday, 4 oíclock
in the afternoon until 2:30 am .

Continue reading here  


Google
WWW TheWVSR.com