Monday, January 31  
can i get a band aid for that? apparently i have muscles. sure they're not visible to the naked eye but i have them. how do i know? because i'm super sore right now, and you have to have muscles to be sore right? fat does not get sore, or so i'm led to believe. some people enjoy being sore for exactly this reason, because after a fulfilling workout, they can feel their effort regurgitated as aching. i'm not that kind of masochist. all i'm thinking when i'm sore is, "my athletic career is over."

the rule used to be whenever you pick random people to play sports, the older person is likely to be better. when you're eighteen, the fourteen year old won't be as good as you. when you're twenty two, you're still possibly at your athletic peak. but now, i've reached the age when i'm the older guy, and people younger than me are likely to be more athletic, more in shape and generally just better. we play ball at ucsd sometimes, and young kids are running crop circles around me. and then they ask me "so, what year are you? a sophmore?" i can't bring myself to say, "i'm twenty six."

this may not be a big deal to you, this whole body decline thing, but this is huge for me. i can't imagine the day when i will no longer be able to take two trips down the court/field without dying. and that day will come sooner than later. there are many things that i think i used to be able to do, but now i can't do them. like the mind is willing but the body is unable. do you know how sad this is? how crappy it feels? i thought i would magically bounce back after rehab a few years ago, but i skipped on the rehab and the magic skipped over me. skip-bo.

i've jumped the shark. if you stop and think about it, as a normal average person, this period of your life is the beginning of the slow decline towards walking sticks and wheelchairs. and doctors visits, lots of doctors visits. and various "oh, my leg just does that, the pain will pass" statements. i mean, seriously? we get ten years (maybe) of properly functioning body parts and then it all starts to fall apart? does anyone else see the injustice here?

ouch. it hurts to sneeze. and i'm not being dramatic. ok, maybe a little.

[ the masked button-eer | 9:49 PM | ]


Thursday, January 27  
wanted. two girls, aged twenty two. one is a student and the other works three part time jobs. both are single and ready to party, but also like their down times and aren't into being sloshed all day long. "(we're) mellow during the week but like going out on the weekends." erika and kelly (possibly their real names) both like to work out, go out, play pool, go to the beach and watch tv -- although they're not too proud of this last activity, why is beyond me. the girls are quote, "very clean."

wanna hang out with erika and kelly? well, first you have to qualify.

are you a guy or girl between the age of twenty and thirty? are you a non-smoker, a non-druggie, a dog lover, and have a full time job? can you be clean and respectful of other people's space? are you also not into drinking every night, and can appreciate a good lazy movie on the weekend? are you drama-free, goal orientated, responsible and fun-loving? then erica and kelly want to live with you, maybe. pending the approval process of course.

it seems like finding a roommate these days is just about as difficult as finding a person you'd want to date. people are super picky about who they want to live with. i've never encountered any hardships when picking roommates. i've always had the good fortune to live with friends wherever i've been, except for freshman year of college -- which was literally a smelly disaster. but now i'm forseeing a future where i'll eventually have to live with strangers. one of my co-workers is going through this process right now. he's gone on eight interviews, had two call backs and still no success. why? becuase people are hella picky man. my co-worker is waiting day and night for responses from people and he's getting nothing. he's asking me for advice on how to respond, when he should call for updates, what a particular word in an email might mean, what his chances are -- all the stuff you normally associate with getting girlfriends or jobs. it's nuts.

wouldn't it be better if everything worked on a lease system? and you knew you could depend on some sort of income -- monetary or emotional -- for six months or more from a person? and that people who request month by month romantic leases are unreliable and require stringent credit checks and also a fat deposit in case they run away unexpectedly? how great would this be? every time a given lease is about to run out -- and only when a lease is about to run out, thus cutting down on the weekly/daily DTRs -- everyone has to consider re-newing their commitment. "do we still want to be going out? should we go for a shorter lease this time? things haven't been going so well. let's reassess over dinner and decide." and if someone wants to break a contract early, they're responsible for finding you an adequate replacement for the duration of the original contract -- with your approval of course. anyone see anything wrong with this idea?

romantic contracts all the way i say. this would also help a lot in deterring arguments -- generally making for better relationships. "ah hell, this contract only runs for another two months, i can put up with her philandering. she's moving out anyway."

and if you're interested in rooming with erica and kelly, send them an email. "we're really not as picky as we sound, we just want to find a good fit!" don't we all...

[ the masked button-eer | 1:18 PM | ]


Wednesday, January 26  
american idiot. so this guy who aborted his suicide mission and left his car behind on the train tracks, thereby killing at least ten people -- and seriously injuring hundreds more. um, genius? first you decide you want to kill yourself. second you figure the best way to do this is by parking in front of an incoming train in your SUV. there's a chance your SUV could survive the impact buddy, why not just use a geo metro or something? that's guaranteed death. or better yet, just stand on the tracks in your underwear, or tie yourself down like in a western. something that doesn't make the train crash and kill others. i'm all for your individual right to die but why're you killing other people? c'mon now, seriously?

note that preceding this train thing, you had tried to stab and slash yourself, apparently without great success. can't you do anything right?

and then at the moment of truth when you decided to jump car and leave it behind (thus leaving evidence that will lead directly to your identity), why not just give that sucker some gas and drive off? do you really need to leave the car there and kill other people? mr brainiac is probably facing a lifetime in prison, if not the death penalty, all deserved i say. but for the people who lost family and loved ones on the train because of your stupidity, is that fact really any consolation? i think not.

have some consideration on your suicide missions people. that's all i ask.

[ the masked button-eer | 11:17 AM | ]


Monday, January 24  
mad libs: if you're (blank) then you're (blank). the remarkable success of hard hitting, yet simplistic fare like "he's just not that into you: the no-excuses truth to understanding guys" has inspired me to write my own book. it will be called: "you're in a relationship when..." here's how it works. some people never know if they're in a relationship. there's massive gray areas, there's confusion, there's games, there's shadiness, there's denial, there's never any clarity. well, today, i'm here to give the world a brief primer on when you're in a relationship and when you're not. settle down now.

first off, let's get this out of the way. just because you say you're in a relationship does not mean that you're in a relationship. if you marked "in a relationship" on your friendster profile, that means nothing. unless you got that ring ring, nothing verbal or highly visible will assure anyone that you're in a relationship. oh but then how can you -- or other people -- tell when you're in a relationship? it's easy.

does any of the following apply/happen to you? (i'm doing this from the guy's perspective, but you could reverse the pronouns.)

does your woman get upset when you talk to other girls? do you hesitate to tell your girl what you did last night out of fear that she'll get mad? do you always have phone in hand around that time? do other people always make fun of you and say "how's your girlfriend?" does she get upset when you dance too closely with other chicks? does she get upset when you don't invite her to a movie with other friends? are you hesitant (or overly eager) to have her meet your parents? do you guys get mad at each other over the smallest things? does she demand that you make her feel special? do you fight over who gets the last bite? do you call each other "baby" or "boo-boo?" does she get upset with you when you decide to fly to visit someone else other than her? do you ever have hour long defensive phone calls about what you did, or didn't do, wrong? do you exclusively cuddle/fondle/snuggle/sleep with each other? does everything you see remind you of that special girl? do you go way out of your way for her and then feel bad if you didn't? does she complain that you don't give her enough attention? do you ever feel really shitty the next day? does she get pissed off when you cancel on her for a semi-legitimate reason? do you do any of these things to her?

guess what buddy, you're in a relationship. easy as pie. people are slow to affix the relationship label on themselves nowadays. it's a scary word. relationship. it implies so much. many people would rather shield themselves from what's going on and say that they're in psuedo-relationships, or deny it altogether. and really, my job here is to say to those're in a relationship. it doesn't even have to be a romantic relationship per se. it can be any relationship where one party is clearly expected to treat the other with special care. this can be between same sex friends, between best friends, between almost girlfriends, it may even be between you and your parents. scratch that last one. anyway. what the term "you're in a relationship" means is that "you're in a (binding) relationship (and you're in deep shit if you misstep whether you admit it or not buddy)." that's what that means.

see, the key to defining a relationship is not the words you use, or the boxes you check, but rather the things that affect you and along with that, the consequences of your actions. if you can make them angry at the drop of a hat, you're most likely in a relationship -- rule of thumb.

conversely, you could be going out with someone but if they don't give two shits about what you're doing, guess what? you're not in a relationship. or maybe you're in a relationship but you're not having a relationship. no screw that, that messes up my tagline. if you're not interacting on an affective level, you're not in a relationship. but if you're effected by their phone calls, their presence, their general state of being, their oneness with the you-centric-universe, then yes, you are in a relationship. period, done.

friends are not relationships, friends are friendships. don't confuse the two. friends don't care about more than one of the things listed above. friends could give a flying rat's ass about most of those things actually. with exceptions of course, for ultra needy and rapacious friends. but if a friend has issues with too many of the things listed above, then know that you are in a relationship, not a friendship. keep it straight.

so that's my synopsis and thesis paragraph on this topic. look for the book to drop sometime this century. buy many copies. buy a gazillion copies. i should trademark that phrase right now. "you're in a relationship." by jon yang. when it comes out, this book should be available in the back of your local used bookstore for about a quarter, start saving.

[ the masked button-eer | 11:23 PM | ]


  oh and from now oh, when we ask each other "how many relationships have you had?" we should be sure to differentiate between "formal relationships" and "informal ones." that should up everyone's number by a few notches right?

so if asked for the number of relationships that you've had, the proper informative reply would be "i've had two parentheses five relationships." meaning two formal ones and five informal ones.

[ the masked button-eer | 10:54 PM | ]


Saturday, January 22  
i know it's easy to make fun of bush these days -- and every day. everyone does it, but it's not every day that a representative from the house steps up and roasts our esteemed president. yesterday on c-span i happened to catch the back end of a post-inaugural comedy show. and on it was one brian baird (d-washington) from the house of representatives. he was doing his killer impersonation of george dubya. i can't find a video online so i'll just have to make do knowing that at least i saw the hilarity that was mr baird's impersonation. this guy was ridiculously good. how he finds the time to do his day job and also come up with comedy routines is beyond me but he's straight up dope. that's it, i'm moving to washington.

in character as president bush (paraphrased)
"last year we went to mars, this year, we're gonna go even further. we're gonna make a solar landing. i know, sounds impossible. to the critics and liberals who say it can't be done, well, here's how we're gonna do it: we're going at night..."

[ the masked button-eer | 11:51 PM | ]


Friday, January 21  
something to talk about. how is dennis quaid so manly? not just dennis in particular, but men like him. the prototypical forty-ish white guy. they just ooze manliness. they age well, they have weathered faces, they have big knuckles, they probably used to be ex-athletes, they're also basic good guys. guys like dennis quaid and harrison ford. it's a very specific kind of guy i'm talking about here. not pretty boys like robert redford or pierce brosnan. not boyish imps like george clooney or mel gibson. not brutes like russell crowe. the kind of men i'm talking about are the kind of guys you'd imagine as the father of your children (assuming i could mother children). they're the kind of guy you'd imagine a picture perfect all american family having as a dad.

there's something to a physical presence. i understand why lots of girls wouldn't want to be with a guy they could probably beat in a wrestling match. you want your husband and father to have some weight to him -- not literal weight of course. you want to feel like your man can protect you when you stand next to him, and not have to hold onto him for fear that he might blow away at the slightest wind. you want to know that given the situation, you could hide behind your dad, because while he may not be the biggest guy on the planet, he is a man.

do you know what i'm talking about?

sensitivity, intelligence and charm all have their place in this world but an overlooked quality is manliness. people (girls) want men who are men. metrosexuals are out. the return of the male is in. and i'm not talking about frat boy, drink beer and watch football on sundays men. i'm just talking about the the kind of man that dennis quaid frequently portrays on-screen. that's the guy women want.

one of my friends a long time ago, when asked what type of guys she was attracted to, said "i like'em rough and tough and afro puffed." essentially, she wanted a real man. heck, who doesn't?

[ the masked button-eer | 9:47 PM | ]


Wednesday, January 19  
the buddy system. they're in. the glow in the dark cuddle buddy bracelets i talked about are in. what does this mean to you gentle reader? well, absolutely nothing. because you do not have these bracelets in hand. however, after i give out the requisite number to a selected few, i'm hoping to have some left over. ah, piqued your interest? i knew it would. first, you really need to be down with the whole concept of cuddle buddying. otherwise, why wear a bracelet that will tell the world that you support this controversial alternative lifestyle? if you are anti-cuddle buddying, sorry, no soup for you.

if you're pro-cuddle buddying, okay with rubber jewelry, and/or already wearing a silicon bracelet advertising your prejudices, why not make that bracelet a cool cuddy buddy one? they glow in the dark people, is that not enough? thematically it's beautiful, physically it's beautiful (now that they adorn my wrist), the whole thing is beautiful; just like the act of cuddling. i've said enough, if you're not sold, god help you. and may your wrist remain forever alone and barren. heathen.

i would post pictures but in this case a thousand substituted words couldn't possibly do the experience justice.

[ the masked button-eer | 1:28 AM | ]


Monday, January 17  
how the hell are you?! i've decided i'm against people who use this phrase. why? it's just a greeting right? it's nothing out of the ordinary. but i'm really against what this greeting implies. "how are you?" is already bad enough (although it can be used to great effect) but adding the "hell" just makes it....i can't find the word i'm looking for here. but to me, the "hell" lends a false sense of urgency and too much excitement to a generic "how are you" greeting. the people i'd imagine actively using this particular phrase are people who really don't care how you're doing but mask it by using a really forced movie-esque greeting. or maybe they really do want to know that badly how you're doing, in which case i'd question their sanity.

it just strikes me as overly dramatic, the emphasis on the "are" and the addition of the "hell." and really, that's all i have to say about that.

[ the masked button-eer | 2:29 PM | ]


Friday, January 14  
elementary, my dear watson. for three weeks now, we've been trying to discern the identity of two mysterious people who appeared as my desktop wallpaper. take a look at the picture.

seems pretty easy right? find the shirt, find the girl. match up the shirt with other pictures and see what girl has worn that before. aha, but we are not stupid. we already did that. no dice. as near as we can figure, the picture was in my saved picture folder and ameer just happened to put it on my desktop. naturally, when people saw it, they asked "who's that?" we didn't know. so we launched an investigation. after asking many many people with no success, we've come down to our last resort: use the power of the blog to figure out who the mysterious woman (and man) is.

wanna play?

here are the facts. the guy at first seemed to be hong, since he wears a black belt, jeans and red shirt clubbing all the time. but after a thorough room raider-ish peek into his closet (we didn't use a black light for fear of grossing ourselves out), his red shirt was determined to have no stripe on the side. and also, hong would never be wearing designer jeans, as the tag near the pocket proudly proclaims these jeans are. hong's arms are also hairier than the picture's arm. the veins and the size of the hands indicate that this man does not possess girly hands -- eliminating me. also, the guy seems to have some chapped lips. and he seems pretty bent over in the perpendicular positon, indicating that he either really dances this way, he's about to be sick, or he's just been released from jail. maybe all three.

onto the girl. first, note the jewelry, do you know someone who wears a ring on her left index finger? how about a necklace with that forever 21-ish pendant? the earrings (although not clearly seen) are not excessively big or hoopy, pretty demure earrings. also, note the slightly longer than shoulder length hair.

the girl's mouth is slightly agape in joy, you can almost imagine the rest of her facial expression. we believe that this was a mocking picture, not a serious candid butt slapping picture. otherwise her mouth would have been tightened with a grimace, maybe with a bit of tongue sticking out.

note how comfortable her hand rests on this guy's ass area. these two are friends.

last of all, the breast area. we've determined that they are either push up As or maybe normal Bs. we brought in a breast expert for this one. also, the shirt is of a pretty extreme v-cut. the only reason we're thinking that none of us were at the scene of the crime was that if there was a girl around who was wearing this kind of shirt, would someone not have at least noticed and kept that lodged in their memories? yes, someone would have. but moving on. the shirt style also screams "2004," which indicates that the date on the picture could be correct. but nothing happened on sep 12, 2004, as far as we know. no big parties, no clubs, no dancing, no girl or guy who looked like this.

last thing, notice the weird left elbow flapping. what is that? we have no clue. anyway, if you know or think you know who these people are, drop me a line. maybe i'll even offer up a bounty, a special prize, if you can give us conclusive evidence that you know the identity of the people in the picture. thanks.

update: thanks to all you aspiring hardy boys and nancy drews out there. we got the mystery solved. i don't want to disclose the identities of these complete strangers (and complete strangers they were) publicly, so if you're dying to know, just email me. let's just say that the results of my investigation wasn't exactly what i was expecting. basically what i'm left with now is not "wow, i can totally go make fun of my (previously unidentified) friends now" but rather "how did these random people's picture get on my computer?" anyway. life is a mystery, photos even more so.

[ the masked button-eer | 1:20 AM | ]


Thursday, January 13  
captain planet. nowadays, when you ask the innocuous question "how's the weather," it's kind of loaded. here's how the weather's doing: it's fucked up. tsunamis, hurricanes, flash floods, heat waves, earthquakes, mudslides, everything you could imagine. doesn't it seem like each year we're seeing more natural disasters that are supposed to be only legendary or once in a lifetime? i remember thinking last year, "wow, four huge hurricanes in florida! we'll never see that again." it was actually seven major hurricanes in the atlantic, with only four crushing florida -- charley, frances, ivan and jeanne.

after the weather shenanigans of last year and the beginning of this year, i'd bet a tidy sum that four major hurricanes in florida will soon become the norm. that's just how it seems to be working out lately. my beloved san diego has become a winter clothes haven -- scarves, gloves, beanies and thick jackets are on full display during the cold months, oftentimes out of necessity. i'm even find myself contemplating wearing sweats underneath my jeans on the especially chilly nights. outrageous.

things are not right. gaea is unhappy.

but what can we, or i, do about it? buy a hybrid car? reduce reuse recycle? the environment, it's something everyone cares about on the surface, "oh global warming? the environment? rain forests? oh that's horrific!" but then what do we do? what can we do? donate a few bucks to some environmental protection agency? vote for stricter car emission laws? do these actions satisfy our environmental conscience?

it's hard for me to see the big picture effect of things. it's easy to say "hey, i'll be gone in sixty years, why care about the environment?" people say "let's preserve the earth for our children" but i say "what children? yours? i won't be having any." and so, my pseudo-care to make the planet a better place is quickly displaced. but sometimes i feel like the planet is surely going to hell, and i should do something about it. it's much like (assuming i was religious) "everyone is going to hell, i should go help people." it seems like an enviable goal but the task is just too daunting. will my participation in earth days -- planting trees, cleaning sewage, breathing more (or less?) -- really help the environment out? i don't know.

the marketing line is that if we all change our habits a little bit, it'll make a literal world of difference. and i believe that, i really do. i just don't know what little habits i need to be changing.

maybe i should start with taking out the trash.

[ the masked button-eer | 9:53 PM | ]


Tuesday, January 11  
how you like them apples? just when you thought apple and music couldn't get any better. the ipod shuffle is here. one gig of specialness in a convenient flash package. plus it's smaller than a juicy fruit pack and weighs less than an ounce -- even i can lift it. this is just too much. just as ipods sales increased 500% over the holiday season (there are now ten million ipods flying around), the shuffle is here to make everyone yearn for another apple product. it's ultra-portable, it's cheap as hell, it stores more songs than other flash memory mp3 units. it's just...unbeatable.

now the question is: if you have to buy just one apple music product, do you go with the 512MB ipod shuffle for $99, the 4-gig mini-ipod for $259 or the 20-gig ipod for $299? i would buy the twenty gig plus the shuffle. i mean, the shuffle is just so damn convenient. shit. this is getting ridiculous. and i haven't even started on the mac mini yet. i was looking forward to getting an ibook at some point, but at this rate i'm just gonna wait around for the mini-ibook, which will hopefully fit into the palm of my hand and be able to display directly to my retina. ridiculous.

isn't it incredible that apple only has a three percent market share in the US computer market? they keep on coming up with the coolest items ever and they only own three percent of the market? i guess their top tier prices tend to drive consumers away but now it's getting ridiculously affordable to buy a mac or any other supporting product. i think i'm ready to "make mine apple!"

[ the masked button-eer | 1:54 PM | ]


Monday, January 10  
chirp chirp, buzz buzz. everyone else in the book club read the inner circle, i didn't. to summarize, it's an account of alfred kinsey's sexual research, as told by his fictional assistant. okay, if you want to know about the the book, go read it. if you want to know about kinsey, go watch the movie. if you want to hear stupid ideas, read on.

i'm here to ask whether or not our current sex education system (or lack thereof) is adequate. most of us got some form of sexual education. for me, it was in sixth grade, from my newlywed biology teacher, who blushed everytime she had to talk about copulation. much of our classroom education involved enactments of sex as done by cartoons. at least that's what i remember. i distinctly recall erections being accompanied by a springboard sound, fitting i suppose, if somewhat traumatizing when hanging out by the pool.

the most "educational" part of sex ed was of course, the pregnancy video. they really shouldn't show that to little kids. disturbing. beyond that, sex ed was a joke. i don't even think we were taught how to properly use a condom. and this is from a private school (although not religious) education mind you. i guess rich kids should just know how to use condoms and avoid STDs.

in class one day, my friend remarked how excited she was to see kevin costner's naked backside in dances with wolves. i found the sentiment disgusting and out of place in my eleven year old world. but then some other girls agreed with her. i'm not sure what resonates with me more, the fact that little girls my age were thinking about naked backsides then or the fact that kevin costner's butt was once an objection of affection. you decide.

what i propose as sexual education is the "buddy system." the following may sound suspiciously like a societal thumbs up for the michael jackson's of the world, but bear with me, it's not. in certain cultures (real or fictionalized), children of a proper age are taken to be educated in the art of lovemaking. they are given real life, and hands on, instruction about how to conduct themselves in the bedroom. i motion for this sex ed era to come into effect again. example. young men aged sixteen to eighteen would be taken (against their will of course) to a sexual education center -- maybe the local planned parenthood could spare a wing, this building could be the wal-mart of sex. anyway, in one dazzling week filled with tedious seminars and rote experiments, young men would be taught the ins and outs of sex. instructors? aren't there a lot of unemployed playboy playmates hanging around? they can't all date hef at the same time can they?

the advantage of this proposal is that everyone will be properly sex educated by the time they've reached (wo)manhood. no more curiosity, no more worrying about "when will i get some?", let's pull back the curtain and take sex out of the backroom and into the classroom. this is the way sex education should be done. there should be no doubts about the value of information you are receiving. no more watching stupid videos, scouring the internet, asking your big sister (or having your big sister trick you into reading sex ed books, as the case may be), sitting down with your totally uncomfortable parents, etc. young adults would just know. and knowing is half the battle. at the successful completion of the sex ed course, t-shirts could be handed out imprinted with "i can prevent abstinence, ask me how." who would be against this plan? except for maybe the playmates? and hef.

[ the masked button-eer | 11:32 AM | ]


Sunday, January 9  
one recipe for a good DDT. the thing about DDTs, is that it can't be forced. deep dark talking (i tend to define "deep dark talk" as an exchange of personal information beyond the normal formalities you might encounter in a friendship) can only evolve organically in any given situation. sometimes DDTs start from the people around you, sometimes they start due to a must be talked about situation. i've had DDTs sparked by an encounter we just had with a bum. DDTs have spawned from the tongues of those curious about what the latest relationship gossip is. anything can spark a DDT, but nothing can start one if the kindling is not there. this is a lesson i've recently learned.

so anyway, despite what i just said about DDTs being organic and spontaneous, i've created an ingredients list for assessing whether or not a DDT could happen (omitting willing participants as an obvious pre-requisite). the ingredient list reads thusly: "someone old, someone new, someone borrowed, someone blue." i just went to a wedding, can you tell?

anyhow, the breakdown for this DDT recipe is pretty self-explanatory. you have a few people who you're comfortable with -- this is the someone(s) old. the someone new is someone who doesn't know any of the stories being passed around, this person's role is to ask questions and to look interested. the borrowed person is someone that wouldn't normally be hanging out with you guys but is around enough that they sort of have an idea what's going on. this person has things to add, they have fresh perspectives on a situation, they're the versatile swingmen of the DDT. the someone blue is the person with the gripe. the person with the sad story that needs to be told. the person with some proverbial fat to chew. no good discussion can be had without someone griping, right?

and that is my recipe for a start up DDT. now to test it out.

[ the masked button-eer | 1:05 PM | ]


Wednesday, January 5  
"you look good." these are words that ex-lovers say to each other. in movies (and in life), when ex-relationshippers meet each other, seventy percent of the time they lead with the "you look good" line. um, why? i can't figure it out. maybe they really are commenting on the fact that their ex looks good -- or maybe even better than before -- but i feel like the motivation behind this comment is really just reassurance. like "you look good (and i want you to think that you're still an attractive individual, even though i'm so flipping happy we broke up and it would not pain me to never see you again)." this greeting has become the throwaway "hello, how are you?" between exes. it's so weird don't you think?

i can understand old friends saying this line, because they are honestly saying what they feel -- for the most part. but between exes, it's like you want to throw each other a compliment to start things off on the right foot, so even if they look like shit, you say "you look good." and what can the other person say back? "you look good too." sure it might be fun to be flirty and teasingly say "well, you look like shit," but if they really looked like shit, you wouldn't say anything at all. if your ex looked like shit you might hold off on the "you look good" and wait until you got home to tell all your friends that "i saw billy today, he looked like total shit, and i mean like total utter shit. he said i looked good though."

i think what "you look good" really says is that two people have nothing to say to each other aside from platitudes. notice however that the timely use of a "you look good" could be a positive. use it in mid-conversation, with a dramatic pause and an arm touch and it's almost an invitation. the duplicitous nature of the "you look good" comment, watch out now.

[ the masked button-eer | 11:29 AM | ]


Tuesday, January 4  
the second to last day to the finale of christmas. there are twelve days of christmas? of course there are. the song tells you so. and since every song is true, then i still have one more day to finish (or start) my christmas cards. this is timely information. never again will i feel guilty about sending belated christmas cards after the new year. after all, i'm just celebrating christmas in its entirety, not as just a day.

feel free to use this quote in cases of late gift giving, "even though december 25th is celebrated as christmas in these cultures (mostly hispanic and latin american), january 6th is often the day for giving gifts. " show off your multi-culturalism and have a handy excuses for being lazy and inconsiderate all at once.

and if someone had told me that in "some places it is traditional to give christmas gifts for each of the twelve days of christmas," i would have converted to christianity long ago. forget this savior, save me from my sins crap, bring me more presents! i believe this is why christianity really spread so far and wide, they got four more presents than the jews.

so in true christmas-y tradition. twelve things i did with my ten days of xmas/new year's break. because not only do you care, but you were dying to know.

(1) watched two movies. the life aquatic with steve zissou and sideways. life aquatic was pretty good, like really funny. well, to me and susie. everyone else was not so sold on it. there's nothing more fun than knowing that everyone else hated a movie that only you and somebody else liked. i felt like saying "neener neener." it makes you feel special. this idea doesn't apply to crap movies like garfield or master & commander.

sideways was one of the better movies of 2004. it wasn't exactly innovative or particularly fascinating, but it was plain old good. sort of like a swingers for middle aged people. i was all hyped to watch this movie before it was released -- mainly for paul giamatti, the new king of losers -- but then the prospect of sandra oh as a sexpot was just too much for me. but now i regret not watching it earlier. anyway, sideways is good, like really good.

(2) amit, with megan as assistant and muse, made me a clear wallet out of tape. clear as in transparent, wallet as in something that holds my non-existent money. this might have been the hit of the vacation -- wallets made from tape, brilliant. my wallet has a special inner pocket that displays my ID to the world although i've taken to putting in other people's business cards in this pocket, since my ID is not nearly as interesting as james', des' or susie's business cards. tape wallets, who knew? you are turning green with envy. i know it.

(3) speaking of green, amit also gave me a copy of a wicked performance from the tony awards. you don't really know what this means to me. for so long i've been listening to the soundtrack, trying to imagine the characters, the sets, the body motions that go with each song. i looked up idina menzel and kristin chenowith's pictures to see if they "fit the role" from an image perspective. and now, i kind of know. it's crazy. you imagine a thing for so long and then to actually see a snippet of it, everything suddenly changes. you probably have no idea what i'm talking about. here's my analogy. it's like having an internet girlfriend, whom you met on friendster. you kind of know what she looks and talks like but you really have no idea. then your friend points her out at a party right as she exits out the door. and you're left going "hum......." moral of the story, i really should have seen wicked in new york, regardless of price. $200 a ticket would have been cheap if only to fill this vacuum inside of me.

(4) i also went to new york a few weeks ago. and the best thing i can say about that is i've discovered the next big thing beyond man purses. that's right, it's a utility belt. i would show you mine but then you might get really really jealous. i found my utility belt in a bargain bin at the triple five soul sample sale. it was obviously misplaced. anyway, the belt might be a woman's belt with pocket attachments but i don't care. i have a thirty inch waist (give or take a few inches) and anything will fit me. now if only my sidekick would fit into one of the zippered belt pockets. but alas, it's too big for anything other than the button one. my sidekick deserves a cozier home than that. right now my utility belt is set for debut in march. you heard it here first, utility belts are in, man purses out. attire yourself accordingly.

(5) also very in are ipods. according to james, ipods are actually out, now that everyone has one. but he's an elitist. he thinks he invented the wheel, the lightbulb and silent velcro. now that everyone has an ipod, he no longer wants to claim any ownership of the whole phenomenon other than "i got it first!" don't you hate people like that? share the wealth man. anyway, seriously everyone has now got an ipod or mini ipod. and some people even got free mini ipods from work, despite already owning an ipod. the rich do get richer. i also possibly won an ipod during my trip to new york, but i wasn't in attendance at the work party, so i missed my chance to duel wield ipods. different ipod music into each ear, i would have truly been living.

(6) in my ongoing campaign to geek-ify james, the winter of 2004 will forever be remembered as a special turning point. not only did james jump onto my world of warcraft bandwagon, he initiated the buying process, researched which stores still had the game in stock, then reserved two copies online. he also drove us down to la mesa -- like really far away as the gryphon flies -- to pick up the copies. while james is still undecided about the happiness he will receive from the game, he has already out-geeked me once. imagine the scene.

late night at denny's, a dark stranger sits in a booth, attached to a laptop, staring intently at his screen as a mouse scuttles by his side. james takes one look at him and says "hey, i think he's playing WoW. should i go talk to him?" no father could have been prouder, no geek geekier. when he returned with the news that "i think he's level 36, and i think he's riding a hippo!" i almost hugged him -- james, not the guy.

two days later, we're in a greek restaurant talking to james' high school friend about why we should be on his WoW server. this guy's greeting to james went somewhere along the lines of "hey, what's up? still halo-ing?" wow, james is known as the halo guy.

everyone knows the geek that turned into the cool. but how many people knows a cool that downgraded into a geek? that is my epic quest and my grand plan for james. in five years when james can't get girls, has braces, wears high waters, needs glasses and knows the difference between a svirfneblin warrior and a vesuvian doppleganger, he will have me to thank.

(7) i got two more tattoos. three trips, an appointment and lots of fuss later, i have wings on my ankle and a pentagram on my back. the pentagram is very nice (colors artfully inverted and drawn with mathematical precision thanks to james), the wings should in theory look good but right now it's all messed up and i'm having huge problems keeping it healthy. i was going for two wings on one ankle (the other ankle-ish area already has a tenant) but that ended up looking really weird. apparently your ankle is not shaped the same all the way around. who knew? when i went to ask the lady about getting wings on my ankle she asked me "is this for you or someone else?" i think she was trying, in her matronly way, to tell me that most wings on ankles are reserved for the fairer sex. only i could get matronly advice in tattoo parlours. i might as well have asked for daisies on my forehead.

(8) lilly threw a bang up party at her apartment. after committing nearly a year ago to be at her apartment for new year's eve 2004-2005, i knew that i was putting all my faith and trust into her ability to throw a great new year's eve gathering. luckily and undoubtabley, lilly is good at this sort of thing. most of my new year's eves have been spent bored, lost, confused, alone on a couch or watching bullshit on tv. throw in the occasional family party with the requisite "aud lang syne" and new year's is usually pretty dull. this new year's was spent drinking jagerbombs, flaming dr pepper's and jello shots. oh what a difference a year, and one lilly, makes. i can't really remember the actual new year's eve moment because by twelve o'clock time was just flying by. i learned two things this new year's eve: i still can't handle my liquor and i forgot the other one. megan has this effect on me -- forgetting things. mainly due to her habit of asking me questions right as i'm in that pass out, hard to focus state. i feel like i answer best in this state however, even if i don't know what i'm saying. i'm gonna try this trick on others and see how effective it is.

kings with enthusiastic strangers is fun. avoiding the card that forces you to do the butt dip / floor slap thing is fun. talking to strangers about fantasy football is fun. wondering who people were during post-party picture viewing is fun. having really tall germans explain to you what "jagermeister" means is fun. watching james kiss people, freak people and generally do anything to earn money (it was an "anything for a dollar" party) is fun. making counterfeit money is fun. missing out on lilly's famous worm dance was not fun. until next year i suppose. also, edamame should be made an official party food.

the recipe for flaming dr pepper's is this. amaretto on bottom, a layer of 151 on top. light 151 on fire -- blue flame, very pretty. sprinkle cinammon for sparks. blow out fire and drop the shot into a glass of beer. drink. voila, tastes just like dr pepper. incredible. also incredible is the respect you get from fellow party goers when purchasing michelob ultra beer. who knew one beer could have such cachet?

pictures to come [temporary ones here]

(9) definitely didn't get to go on a snowboarding trip. things fell through. first, des got sick or pre-sick, so she decided it probably wasn't a good idea for her to go. after that, george wanted to pull out because if des didn't go then who would she ride with? and if george and des weren't gonna go, why were me and james gonna go? so, no trip. the thing i like about my friends is how quick we are to collectively pull out of something. leaving after already being seated at restaurants (we're particularly good at this), cancelling on an organized trip, we back out of anything and everything. we're just very quick to assess the situation and pull out of things. tug the ear if you will.

also missed out on seeing my friend stacey for her birthday. traditionally i've always seen stacey on her birthday. not a real rock solid stop the earth tradition but somehow it just works out that way. i've hung out with her every year on her birthday ever since i've known her, starting with her twenty first (maybe missing one year). i like these types of spontaneous traditions, and it always kinda saddens me when they end.

(10) i am in the process of making limited edition silicon bracelets emblazoned with "cuddle buddy" on them. now that the silicon bracelet manufacturing industry is employing thousands (millions?) of third world country peoples, it is easy to customize and publicize your own causes and crusades. a business partner and i are ordering -- let's say, creating -- a trial run of glow in the dark bracelets in support of cuddle buddies. the novelty of this item and the main selling point is obviously the glow in the dark function. how handy to be wearing a bracelet that can direct cuddle buddies your way, or you to willing cuddle buddies. in 2005, i will be setting forth the aspiration to cuddle-fy the world, one wrist and bed at a time. time magazine man of the year, here i come.

i'll keep you posted on the status of these bracelets. those of you whom are already cuddle whores (you know who are you) will be receiving complimentary cuddle buddy bracelets in the mail. so if i ask you for your address, don't hesitate to reply lest you miss out on this exclusive item not available anywhere else in the galaxy.

(11) new year's resolution. i vow to share but not care. actually, i'm already pretty good at that. i vow to find the gilded cup of life and drink deeply from it. nah, too ambitious. i vow to read every last word of pynchon's gravity's rainbow. only if i can secure unemployment. i vow to get fired due to my blog. this would only apply to me if i were fired because of my blogging at work. so really, not a resolution, more of a fear. i vow switch to soft contacts. that sounds about right, i can commit to that. it's best to set your goals low, so that even if you trip, you might end up getting there anyway.

(12) i'm gonna be one short of twelve things. always the underachiever. happy holidays.

[ the masked button-eer | 4:25 PM | ]