Man, not having a car in an area without a well-developed, easily accessible mass transit system sucks ass. If I had a car, I would have been up to Boston, visitied Wolf probably twice by now, and had a much less difficult time trying to get to Long Island for New Year's.
But hey, soon enough I will be back in Boston, where the T will take me almost anywhere I want to go. And take so, so long to get there.
In other news, Sovereign Bank, like a viper, is arising from the shadows to strike at me once again with incompetence. Yesterday, I got a credit line statement from them that included a $40 balance with a ten dollar monthly "finance" charge, which confused the hell out of me, because I closed my credit card account last year. Then I called them up to ask what the hell was going on, and they said that my account had a zero balance and no activity, and they couldn't open it to look at the records, so they'd have to call me back. This should be interesting. And infuriating.
I have also completely developed my own original drink recipe, called, for lack of a better name, "The Modified." And I also improved a formula for a sour apple martini, that won my mom's and aunt's approval last night.
And I just picked up a really cheap bargain-bin copy of Grim Fandango, which is just so incredible.
And that is pretty much what I do when I'm home. I drink and play video games.
Happy New Year, everyone!
posted at 6:22 PM
Sunday, December 22, 2002
The Video Game Industry Is Conspiring To Ruin Me
During my final semester at Boston University, I will have to contend with the following:
1). SimCity 4 2). The new Zelda game on GameCube 3). An ethernet connection for Neverwinter Nights 4). That pesky classwork and saving money for L.A.
Also, I will probably be buying either Phantasy Star Online or Animal Crossing for the GameCube. Maybe StarFox, too. That game rules.
In other news, I HAVE to tear myself away from these video games to write some column submissions for next semester. I also need to really think about whether I want to take a video production class next semester. On the pros side, I'll get to play with AVIDs and make funny little video pieces, as well as trying my hand at directing. On the cons side, production classes take up an assload of time and also make you hate (almost) everyone you work with.
posted at 7:43 PM
Wednesday, December 18, 2002
I forgot to mention ... at the otherwise amazing "Malcolm" wrap party, the guy who created the short-lived television series "The Oblongs" hit on me. Relentlessly. He's at least a decade older than me.
I guess that's Hollywood for you ... just when you start to like someone for their interesting visual style, they turn on the sleaze factory.
"The Two Towers" rules. My brother and I both wish we were Legolas.
posted at 9:40 PM
Jobless in Connecticut
On the way to LAX, Aimee and I shared a van-cab. Things were going relatively well, when all of a sudden, this woman in a black sedan started beeping at us from behind. She floored her car, passed us, then got right in front of us, where she promptly slammed on her brakes, causing a near-collision. I don't know whether this person had some sort of grudge against the United Taxicab Company, but for the next ten minutes or so, every time we tried to pass her, she would change lanes to get in front of us, missing us narrowly each time. Then, when we finally got to a stoplight and pulled up next to her, the driver rolled down his window to yell at her, and she just smiled and shrugged, like what she did was cute, rather than life-threatening to four (and possibly more) people. What a total bitch.
Then, of course, I get terrible luck with flying. I originally scheduled a 2 hour layover in Newark, so I could grab a nice dinner before I flew out to Hartford. But, as it were, I sat on the runway in LAX for an hour while an engine was replaced (that's comforting), then sat on the runway at Newark after landing because there was another plane at our gate. So, I essentially had to sprint to my connecting flight AGAIN, which was on this tiny jet that really let you know when you hit some turbulence. Although, in all fairness, I did have a pretty delicious vegetarian meal on the flight from LA to Newark.
The professor who offered me a job when I got back was a total joke, as well. I met him on the CCSU campus at a coffee shop, sat down and talked with him for a few minutes, when I noticed his hand was shaking terribly. Then he launches into this terrible sales pitch for a pyramid scheme he wants me to participate in. What a fucking jyp. Here I was, expecting to help him research his books, and I get a fucking sleazeball bullshit sales pitch that I could see right through, thanks to my piercing logic ... and the fact that I spent years peddling the same bullshit over the phone.
So now, I am jobless. While I may be able to get that telemarketing job again, I really, really, really never want to work in telemarketing again. So, I think if I don't go nuts with Christmas shopping, and watch my wallet even more than I do now, I could probably stretch my leftover money through till mid-January, when I will once again be a TA and (hopefully) get a workstudy doing something that requires minimum effort.
All I have to do is make it through this winter break in once piece. And I'm pretty sure I have enough vodka to do that.
posted at 8:21 AM
Thursday, December 12, 2002
The Many Perks Of Hollywood Jobs
I'm writing this from work right now, because something's happened to my ethernet card at home and it won't connect to the network. Bastard technology.
Anyway, my class is over, and my presentation went pretty well, I think. Much better than some of the other crapfests we were subjected to. During this one girl's "presentation" on her documentary about cystic fibrosis, she started going off on ten minute hippie tangents about how you need to be an individual, and everyone should do what makes them happy, and blahblahblahgranolablahblahpatchoulibullshit. Really, nothing to do with her actual documentary at all. So, I grab a piece of paper, and write a note to Ben, which read, "Is she stoned right now?" Ben chuckled, then wrote back, "She can't smoke pot. She has a lung disease, dipshit." I just about lost it right there.
So now that that mess is all over with, I'm just hanging out here at "Malcolm" for a few more days, where I will soon be getting an enormous cache of gifts from them. Tonight, I'm going to their Hollywood Wrap Party (with an open bar, no less), and today, I picked up a copy of the Simpsons Season 2 DVD ... for 20 BUCKS. That enormous discount, alone, should be enough to make everyone want to work in television. But don't you dare apply anywhere, because I need the jobs, dammit.
posted at 2:14 PM
Tuesday, December 10, 2002
HOLY SHIT! PICTURES!
Check out some updated pictures from L.A. and my San Francisco trip in the PICTURES section on the left there. Can you think of any better way to not study for finals than to live vicariously through me?
Also, good luck to the SlowKids tonight. One love.
posted at 4:47 PM
Sunday, December 08, 2002
So that didn't happen. So here it is again, in link form.
It's the latest flyer for Slow Children At Play, whose show is coming up on Tuesday. If you are living in the Boston area, you are not allowed to not attend this show. Despite the spelling errors, this is one of my favorite flyers of all time, and from what I can tell, this upcoming show is going to be very good. A few breaks from tradition, but that's innovation for you! Always changing, we SlowKids. But seriously, go see it. Dec. 8th, 8:00, GSU Conference Auditorium. The usual three bucks.
And, in brief, here are some other developments.
"Adaptation" is fucking amazing. You NEED to go see this movie if you are / have been / want to be a writer of any sort. There is so much going on in this movie, it's almost unbelievable. Probably the most complex film I've ever seen ... and it's also really funny.
Hey, I went to an Orange Julius on Saturday. There used to be an Orange Julius in the mall near my home, but they up and vanished when I was like ten or eleven. So basically, this was the first Orange Julius I'd been to in like a decade. It was delicious.
I'm finishing out my internship this week. I'll be sad to go, honestly. It's one of the best jobs I've ever had, and they're giving me all this great "Malcolm" stuff, like a winter hat, a baseball hat, and a crew jacket, which rules. So, Aimee and I bought the office a Brookstone massager machine as a "thank you" gift. It's a gift that says "thank you" as much as it says "hire us, please."
Other than that, it will be good to get back home to New England for a while. I know I'll be complaining about the weather as soon as I get off the plane, but at least I won't have to pay for food for a while. And my brother's gotten pretty damn good at Super Smash Brothers Melee. Guess what we'll be doing as soon as I get home.
posted at 8:47 PM
Contractual Obligation ... And Love
Are the reasons I'm posting this graphic (hopefully)
Friday, December 06, 2002
Nearing the Wrap Party
Well, it seems like I no longer hate Los Angeles. Maybe that has something to do with the fact that I'm only going to be here for like a week more, or from the fact that I haven't been on one of the freeways since I've gotten back. Or maybe I just need to be able to take vacations every 5-6 weeks or so. Regardless, it's beginning to look a lot like I won't mind moving out here when I graduate. Whodathunkit?
It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas -- L.A. Style. That means that a lot of people are blasting their houses with white paint and wrapping blinking lights around everything, pretending that it actually snows down here. What this also means is that I have to start thinking about getting Christmas Gifts for people, which means I have to re-evaluate my budget for the winter break.
Fortunately, my professor from my summer history class at CCSU just sent me an email asking if my "sharp mind wanted to make some good money on a part time basis" helping out at his business. Hey, whatever it is, I'm sure it beats the hell out of telemarketing, so I'll probably do it.
Today, I'm going to see "Adaptation" in the early afternoon before heading out to Universal Studios for a half-assed tour of the backlot and a (hopefully) full-assed free dinner, the most important string of words in that sentence being "free dinner." Some more good things about L.A., I guess.
Oh, I'm also getting ready for my bullshit final project, where I have to develop my own pitch for a film or television series. I'm turning Christopher Durang's "Betty's Summer Vacation" into an indie comedy, but I need to think of actors to play the parts. This is not difficult, but very time consuming. So, if you can think of any actors who can play: 1). a 29-year-old sensible, polite young woman, who mainly reacts to the madness around her 2). Another 29-year-old woman, more heavyset, who can be incessantly chatty 3). A sensitive, quiet, mysterious man in his late twenties. Looks normal, but has something very odd about him 4). A moron-hunk-fratboy 5). An insane derelict in his late 40s
Any help would be greatly appreciated.
posted at 9:14 AM
Wednesday, December 04, 2002
Flying The Friendly Skies
So, I had a pretty good time over Thanksgiving break. Got to see a lot of snow, a lot of relatives and a lot of friends I hadn’t seen in a long time. All was fine … until the attempt to travel back to Los Angeles.
These US Airway flights would eventually come to be known as “The Single Worst Flying Experience Ever.” I got into my flight at Hartford Bradley Airport, where we promptly sat on the runway for forty minutes while the bottom of the plane made weird honking noises. The stewards, as they are paid to do, said that it was normal, but still, a lot of people were visibly worried.
We eventually took off and had a relatively smooth flight. We landed in Philadelphia at 5:40, which was unfortunate because my connecting flight to Los Angeles was scheduled to depart at 5:20. I asked one of the US Airways clerks if my flight had left yet, and they got me this little electric cart to speed through the Philadelphia airport on. Unfortunately, speeding is not really an option when people are standing in the middle of the hallway, not moving when you’re beeping at them. So, I hopped off the cart in motion and ran to my gate, where I discovered that my flight was closed.
I approached the clerk at this gate, explaining that my flight was delayed in Hartford, and I had a ticket, and why was the flight closed, and was there any other seats available, please? She checked for me, and, as luck would have it, there was a single seat left. I ran onto the plane and sat down in the Godforsaken middle seat, where I quickly noticed I was surrounded by all those “Airplane Characters” that no one wants to sit near, ever. On each side of me were two enormous men, who sat with their legs spread wide open and their shoulder-fat rolling over into my seat – which resulted in me basically sitting in the same, uncomfortable upright position for my entire flight, rendered immobile by my neighbors’ love of fatty foods.
In the row behind me was a baby who cried incessantly for three hours. In the row in front of me was another baby, who cried for the remaining four and a half hours of the flight. And directly behind me was a silly old woman who wouldn’t stop kicking my seat. But, on a positive note, I did get to see this buff young man trip over my fat neighbor’s leg and fall, face first on to the floor. That was pretty funny. Then we hit turbulence over Kansas City, which continued all the way to Los Angeles. And because of some insane headwinds, the trip took an extra ninety minutes, all filled with turbulence. That was not funny.
As we were landing, I got a ridiculously painful migraine. It seriously felt like my head was going to explode. I was sweating, and I thought I was going to throw up, which would have been highly unfortunate. We landed smoothly, though, and I thought, “If I can just make it to the baggage claim, I can get to the Advil I packed and everything would be fine.” I walked to the baggage claim, where I heard the words that no one who travels ever wants to hear: “Casey Schreiner, please report to the U.S. Air Baggage Office.”
Apparently, my luggage decided to take a trip into lovely San Antonio instead of following me to Los Angeles. That’s cool. If my luggage wants to see the world, who am I to stand in its way? Besides, the U.S. Air people said they would deliver my luggage to me the next day. Looking on the bright side, as I am sometimes known to do, I saw that at least I wouldn’t have to be lugging my heavy luggage around. Maybe my airlines should always lose my luggage for a day and then personally deliver it to me.
An hour later, I arrived home in Park Labrea, nauseous and still suffering from a killer migraine. I went to bed, where I tossed and turned until 4 AM, which in my time was 7AM, until I snuck out, pilfered some Tylenol P.M. and passed out until noon.
But the oddest thing was, L.A. wasn’t nearly as nasty as I remembered it being. This could be an interesting development.