The terrible part about the whole situation was this: I got bit at 2:00 PM. I had to work at Walgreens from 4:00 PM until 10:00 PM. So I worked with a bandaged hand and a Norco-riddled brain. I'm sure I was on my A-game that night. Jesus.
No, I'm not talking about Halloween here. I am talking about a for real haunted house. One that I live in. I don't really believe in ghosts, but this house has me wondering. There is something wrong with this place. Here's what I mean:
The silverware drawer rattles at night sometimes. Josh is asleep or gone when it does it, so I know it's not him. I can hear it from my bedroom, which is immediately adjacent to the kitchen. It's not prolonged or anything, just a couple quick rattles.
There are dark shapes or shadows in the corners of your vision every now and then. Then when you turn your head to focus on them, they're gone. Poof.
There are noises that I can't seem to find a explanation for. The water heater and the heater click on and off, but it's not that. It's hard to explain, but I have tried to find a reason or a source of the noises and I can never find anything.
All the kids in the neighborhood say the house is haunted. None of them know why, but they all say the same things: "the house is haunted by the lady and her dog who lived there," "how can you live in the haunted house?" and "did you know your house is haunted?"
The dryer shuts off on its own. It never does it when you are watching it or near it; it only happens when you are in the front room, outside, or out of the house. Creepy. I don't dig it. And like I said, I don't really believe in ghosts, ghouls, goblins, and all that gobbledygook. But this certainly would shake your beliefs a little.
I had my retail rotation at Wal-Mart in Caldwell, which is pretty much like little San Bernardino. I should have speaka'ed the Espanol but I chose not to on the grounds that we are in America. And in America, we speaka the English and the ebonics. The rotation at Wal-Mart was awful: I was a slave for 8 hours a day, filling, counseling, and doing transfers. It was terrible. I barely received any instruction from my preceptor who decided to take a 2 week vacation during my rotation there too. Godfuckingawful experience.
Anyhow, one day there was an unattractive 35 year old Hispanic female with a kid in a stroller that I counseled on her fluconazole (for a yeast infection). I did my normal duties per usual and she pushed her kid away once I was done. Instead of leaving like a normal person, she went to the "in" window and talked with the tech there. After the woman with the nino left, the tech came over and handed me a piece of paper. What was on the paper, you might ask? Well, it was her phone number. A 35 year old Hispanic woman with a kid and a raging yeast infection gave her phone number to the tech and told the tech to tell me that she thought I was cute.
The other story I have from Wal-Mart is the 26 year old female cashier that passed out and I nearly had to do CPR on her.
I was in the pharmacy when one of the other cashiers came running to the pharmacy, all panicked that the one cashier had fainted while checking someone out. I went over to the register where the passed-out cashier lay. She was face-down and her face lay in a puddle of her drool. I checked for a pulse and respirations…..she had a very faint and rapid pulse with very shallow breaths. Her eyes were closed pretty tight and when I opened them, they weren't real responsive to light. The pupils were equal though. Someone had already called 911, so I was there to just make sure that she lived long enough for the EMTs to get there. I was fine with her being unconscious until the EMTs arrived, but all the other folks gathered around were freaking the hell out that she was not awake. So what did I do? I woke her up with a knuckle rub on the spine.
She came to with a start and immediately began freaking out that she was on the floor. Finally, the paramedics got there and I no longer had to care for the unconscious/ no semiconscious chick. Whew. I really thought for a few moments that I was going to have to do CPR on her.
I found a great website with Jack O'lantern patterns and carved 8 pumpkins from it. I found the Star of David elsewhere. The mice are chocolate. Here are the fruits (well actually, pumpkins are vegetables) of my labors:
WHAT EXACTLY IS A BURRITO?
So if a perro is a dog, a perrito is a little dog, a burro is a donkey, then what is a burrito? Food for thought…..literally.
MY HALF-ASSED MOVIE REVIEWS
Juno: Just a great, oddball comedy. There were some duller points, but they serve to make the funny parts that much better. 4/5 stars
Se7en: A pretty intense, but shamefully predictable movie. I knew what would happen before it did, but at least it was a good story. 3/5 stars
The Omen: A novel ending, but a terrible movie throughout. Weak acting and cheesy lines. 1/5 stars.
Déjà vu: Once again, a pretty predictable movie. I was pretty disappointed in this movie since the trailers and previews made it look awesome, but it turned out to be mediocre at best. 2/5 stars
The Mist: I am a pretty big fan of Stephen King's novels, so a film adaptation of a King novel had better be good. I'll admit that the beasties in this movie were a tad trite and underdeveloped, but the plot was great and the end was provoking. 4/5 stars.
Black Snake Moan: A movie with a meandering plot, but plenty of wtf moments and boobs. Interesting movie, to say the least. 3/5 stars.
The Bourne Ultimatum: By far the best movie of the trilogy, but the entire trilogy cannot due justice to the novels. The first two were just a disgrace to the books. 3/5 stars
The Grand: A movie with a ton of potential that just fails to deliver over and over again. There were so many golden comedy moments that almost happened but didn't. Boo. 2/5 stars.
The Exorcist II: Just dreadful. The plot was incomprehensible and there was no suspense. It wasn't scary, just stupid. This was a disgrace to the franchise. 0/5 stars
The Exorcist III: Much better than the second, but it can't compare to the first. The plot was understandable and the acting was decent. The author of the first novel actually had a role in filming this movie, so of course it was better than the second one. 3/5 stars.
THANKS FOR THANKSGIVING
My mom decided to have Thanksgiving at our house in Redlands this year. That's all fine and good because I hate having to drive to Ventura for Thanksgiving. Call me selfish, but that drive sucks. And the family that lives there moved away from the core of the family in the Inland Empire, so it's only fitting that they should have to drive back to the IE to celebrate holidays since they left. However, there is one catch to this Thanksgiving.
My mom volunteered me to cook it. Damn. I like cooking and I love eating, but I was pretty much volunteered up to cook the meal without consultation first. Huh. Kinda sucks. Oh well.
So now I have to cook everything for my family's Thanksgiving. And my uncle Roy is very good at cooking turkeys, so I have a pretty high standard to live up to. Shucks. My aunt is good at making mashed 'taters, so there's another standard I have to meet. She's also great at casseroles. Shit. Here we go. Allrecipes.com, don't fail me now.
THANKS TO MY MOM, YET AGAIN
My mom has crappy genes. She has SLE (lupus) and has had 2274378293482342875 skin cancers removed. So now I have the itchy butterfly rash on my face/nose and I had a weird mole. Jesus…. But more about my mole.
It was on my right tricep. It used to be pretty small, more like a freckle. But in the last year or so, it grew and grew. Recently, it scabbed over and healed 3 or 4 times. When it was scabbed over, it was super-sensitive to touch. Since I have crappy genes, I went to the dermatologist. They punch biopsied it and stitched me up proper. I got a call 3 days later that made me feel better: it was just a benign mole that presented weird. Whew.
Anyhow, here's some more info on skin cancer if you're bored.
MY NEW EXERCISE GOAL
I have been working out a lot lately (weights, walking, jogging, running, biking, aerobics, jump roping, etc.). I have decided that I want to try a triathlon in the summer of 2009 sometime. I dunno why this has popped into my mind as a good idea, but it has stayed in there now for about 3 or 4 weeks. I dunno why I want to do it really. Maybe it's to prove that kids with asthma can grow up to lead normal lives. Maybe it's to get healthy and physically fit so that I don't end up like the patients I see (fat, with hypertension, hypercholesterolemia, diabetes, obstructive sleep apnea, congestive heart failure, etc.). Or maybe it's just to prove to myself that I can do it. I dunno. Maybe it's a combination of all of those explanations.
All I do know is that the swimming portion would definitely be the hardest portion for me. I am a pretty strong swimmer, but the distance may get to me. The running and the biking are coming pretty easily to me, so hopefully those won't present much of an issue.
TOPPING OFF TROUBLES
When gas was super expensive, it was so hard to top off and make it an even number (sure as hell wasn't hard to hit $50 though). That was probably my least favorite thing about high gas prices besides high gas prices. I cannot tell you how happy the price decline at the pump makes me (and not just because $2.40 a gallon is better than $4.00 a gallon). I hate uneven numbers with extra cents left on them. So now my anal retentive, obsessive compulsive mind can relax a little more as I gas up.
SHOULDN'T THEY HAVE TO PASS A TEST OR SOMETHING???
You know those bumper stickers that some girls put on their cars? The ones that say "hottie" or "foxy girl" or the worst "sexy girl inside?" Yeah, I hate those. They always promise something good…and never deliver. Ever. You see the sticker and expect to see some model driving the car, but you get disappointed. It's usually a fat, ugly white trash chick that smokes with her 3 kids under the age of 3 in the car.
I think girls should have to pass a test before they are already to purchase those stickers. They should have to stand before a panel of judges and either get a "yea" or "nay" as to whether they are allowed to purchase it. They need a harsh reality check. I realize that it's important for girls to have good self esteem and that's all well and good. I agree that having self confidence is a good thing. But let's be realistic. If you're ugly, you needn't flaunt it. Thanks.
FINALLY SOME JUSTICE!!!
Katie and I went to see Jason Mraz, who is one of her favorites. As we were walking to the concert, we had to cross a fairly busy street. We waited for traffic to die down, but it just never seemed to. So we decided we were going to have to just cross the street and stop traffic for a few seconds (it was a one-way street).
We walked briskly and all the lanes stopped….except one. There was this guy in a Honda Civic who just kept going and nearly clipped us as he went by at 35 mph or so. We both shouted at him and Katie flipped him a snappy one-finger salute. And sadly enough for this guy, he had to come to a stop immediately after passing us as the next light was red and there was a line of cars. I almost went over to knock on his window and ask him where the fucking fire was, but I am so glad I didn't. Why?
Well, because the cops flipped on their lights and pulled around the corner. The dude got a ticket for going through the intersection with pedestrians in the crosswalk! Haha. Swift, brutal, monetary justice!
BANDS THAT DON'T SUCK ON THEIR NEW ALBUMS
In my last blog, I wrote about how some bands just lose their awesomeness from CD to CD. Well, here's the flip side of the coin for that argument. Here are some bands that came through on their latest release:
Hawthorne Heights Fragile Future: One of their band members died (the screamer) and they sort of followed Bayside's footsteps: they made a deeper, more emotionally involved album and they removed the screaming! Yay!
Buckcherry Black Butterfly: It may actually be better than their previous album 15 which contained the song "Crazy Bitch." This one has an awesome song called "Too Drunk…(To Fuck)." Rock on.
Seether Finding Beauty in Negative Spaces: This is a nice slap in the face to Amy Lee of Evanescence. The entire album is the lead singer verbally assaulting her. Haha. It is kinda of interesting to listen to The Open Door by Evanescence and then listen to this one right after it. You hear two sides of the same story and you know the truth lies somewhere in between.
Valencia We All Need A Reason To Believe: A much more focused and listen-able record compared to their first punk album (This Could Be A Possibility). A few rockin' songs, a few mellow songs, but all good tracks.
Anberlin New Surrender: While it may not be as good as their previous two releases (Cities is just amazing and Never Take Friendship Personal is a great ironic album), it is still very good punk music. The only complaint I have is that it is more poppy than I think Anberlin is at heart, but there are still some good rockin' tracks.
Gym Class Heroes The Quilt: I expected this album to suck just because they received so much press attention and hype over the last album. But no, this album may be even better than the previous release.
Story of the Year The Black Swan: Although nothing can match their second album (In the Wake of Determination) in the way of aggressive choruses, this CD definitely gains some melody and depth. A very good rock album.
Senses Fail Life Is Not A Waiting Room: I expected this album to be weak since they changed record companies to Drive Thru records (and Drive Thru typically sucks the life out of any good band that signs with them). Wow, was I ever wrong. \m/ (rock on in txt language)
Houston Calls The End of an Error: An up-and-coming punk band. Their first album was alright, with a few solid tracks and the rest filler. This one is just the opposite; mainly good tracks and only a couple fillers.
Trapt Only Through The Pain…: This is the same and it is not the same band that made the song "Headstrong." The same "rockness" is there, but the lyrics are better and more developed now. Very nice album.
The Classic Crime The Silver Cord: I saw that this album got a lot of negative press, but I think it follows their first album (Albatross) nicely. It's nearly identical in style. Rock out with your rooster out.
I Am Ghost Those We Leave Behind: More awesome music in the same vein as always: their self-invented epicore. The only disappointment is that the female vocals are gone in this album.
Escape The Fate This War is Ours: A completely different direction from their first EP and full album. And I must say, it was a welcome change (less screaming, more singing, less drum-slamming, more thought put into arrangements). The new singer makes the band.
Shinedown The Sound of Madness: With each album, they get better and better. Their first one was kinda weak, the second alright, and this one's pretty bitchin'.
AND NOW ONTO THE BANDS THAT DID SUCK ON THEIR LATEST ALBUM
1997 On The Run: Their first album (A Better View of the Rising Moon) was new and different. It fused male and female vocals nicely and was something new in the punk scene. They had original lyrics too. This album just sucks, plain and simple. Not good. At all. Boo on 1997. They're living in the past.
Sugarland Love on the Inside: There are a couple good songs, but they've been dwindling down since the first album (Twice the Speed of Life). That album was awesome. The second album (Enjoy the Ride) was OK, with a few hits. And this latest album is just annoying, especially the song "All I Want To Do."
Staind The Illusion of Progress: It certainly was an illusion of progress. I'd say it was a horrible regression. Repetitive lyrics and guitarwork. Boo on Aaron Lewis and boo on Staind. Try again, fellas. Go back to what worked on your best album (Break the Cycle).
Metallica Death Magnetic: They're old and tired and it sounds that way. This is a forced album from the get-go and there is one good song at most on it. This was below par but not unforeseen. The guys are just too old to rock like they used to. It's too bad. I prefer they went out on a good note, but I guess they're going to keep going down the poppy, boring road they paved with this album.
Family Force 5 Dance or Die: Definitely the biggest disappointment of the 5 CDs listed here. I had high, high, high hopes for this album because their first album actually made me want to dance a little bit (and let me say that it had to be a fricking amazing album to make me want to shake my bony little moneymaker). But no, this CD sucked. The vocals are all synthed out now, even though the singer has a decent voice for a punk band. The lyrics were simple and even more trite than the first album. It just seems like they lost their direction on this album. Hopefully they can recover on the 3rd album. Hopefully.
Music enjoyed whilst composing this masterpiece: