Monday, November 28, 2005

Shut the fuck up, I'm reading.

I live in a neighborhood charmed by two types of people: unmedicated schizophrenics wandering the streets, ranting to themselves or to voices we can't hear, and the hands-free, courtesy-free-earpiece-cell-phone-user who thinks the world is his speakerphone. Sometimes it's hard to tell the difference.

Monday, November 21, 2005

Thanksgiving Week!

I think I might have about 16 minutes of total work in me this 3-day week. The only question is whether to do them consecutively or spread them over the 3 days. I think I might have to devote the better part of today to wrestling with this notion.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Hungover at Work or: How I Discovered the Only Thing That Could Improve Jessica Alba Was Maple Syrup

CitizenKumpart: how good do pancakes sound right now?
mikebinla: ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh
mikebinla: pancakes
CitizenKumpart: fuckin flapjacks
CitizenKumpart: CitizenKumpart: fuck this, let's get some pancakes
KiDDster7: if i could eat right now i would
CitizenKumpart: why can't you eat?
KiDDster7: i'm still drunk
mikebinla: LOL
mikebinla: what time did you guys leave?
CitizenKumpart: 1230-1245
mikebinla: nice
mikebinla: it really escalated last night
CitizenKumpart: good times
mikebinla: i had a GREAT time!
CitizenKumpart: i'll bet you did
CitizenKumpart: "A Mega Millions ticket sold in Anaheim, California, has won the $315 million grand prize."
CitizenKumpart: sorry dude
CitizenKumpart: so much for the early Fiesta Bowl
mikebinla: i was close
mikebinla: not really
mikebinla: FIESTA BOWL!
mikebinla: it's on
mikebinla: are you bringing them by?
CitizenKumpart: ?
mikebinla: the flapjacks
CitizenKumpart: dude
CitizenKumpart: i wish
mikebinla: dude
mikebinla: flapjacks
mikebinla: hook a brother up
CitizenKumpart: you know what else sounds good
CitizenKumpart: little.
CitizenKumpart: chocolate.
CitizenKumpart: donettes.
CitizenKumpart: dude
CitizenKumpart: that's the cruel nature of this world
CitizenKumpart: what we want most is so simple, so easy, so seemingly attainable
CitizenKumpart: and yet we can't reach out and touch it
mikebinla: wtf are you talking about?
mikebinla: it isn't hard
CitizenKumpart: our happiness is a mirage
mikebinla: just bring me some fuckin panckaes
mikebinla: NOW
CitizenKumpart: dude
CitizenKumpart: telling me to bring you some fucking pancakes while i am chained to my desk is like me telling you to bring me some fucking jessica alba
CitizenKumpart: actually, could you look into that please?
mikebinla: yes!
mikebinla: i will look into it!
mikebinla: NOW!
mikebinla: NOW!
CitizenKumpart: flapjacks?
mikebinla: YES!!!
CitizenKumpart: hot cakes?
mikebinla: john
mikebinla: you are going to make me upset
mikebinla: you do NOT want to see me upset
CitizenKumpart: griddle cakes?
mikebinla: dude
mikebinla: pushing buttons
CitizenKumpart: what about this
mikebinla: ?
CitizenKumpart: +
CitizenKumpart: simultaneous!
CitizenKumpart: alba w/maple syrup
CitizenKumpart: i just called it in
CitizenKumpart: i don't know about you but i've got a short stack on the way
mikebinla: really?
CitizenKumpart: yes
mikebinla: awesome
CitizenKumpart: i suggest you do the same
mikebinla: i am on my way up
CitizenKumpart: dude
mikebinla: ?
CitizenKumpart: i didn't get any for you
mikebinla: what?
mikebinla: you're kidding, right?
CitizenKumpart: oy
CitizenKumpart: such a prima donna
CitizenKumpart: alright, i'm seeing if i can add to my order
mikebinla: no, i am kidding
mikebinla: i am all good
CitizenKumpart: since your dialing finger is broken
CitizenKumpart: what?
CitizenKumpart: you're backing out now?
CitizenKumpart: NOW?
mikebinla: went for cereal insteas
mikebinla: instead
CitizenKumpart: when the pancakes are imminent?
mikebinla: lol
mikebinla: you enjoy buddy
CitizenKumpart: where is your American Resolve?
mikebinla: i am irish
mikebinla: Ireland mofo
CitizenKumpart: you think your people wouldn't have wanted you to have some pancakes if you could while they were starving?
mikebinla: lol
CitizenKumpart: today is the Irish Pancake Famine
CitizenKumpart: and you are marching straight into it like it's the Rose Parade
mikebinla: that does sound nice
CitizenKumpart: "it's delicious"
mikebinla: mmm, sounds like it
CitizenKumpart: ok so when can i expect jessica to arrive?
mikebinla: /
mikebinla: ?
mikebinla: is she not there yet
CitizenKumpart: don't fuck with me
mikebinla: asking a question
CitizenKumpart: no dude
CitizenKumpart: she is NOT here yet
mikebinla: that bitch
mikebinla: i'll call her
CitizenKumpart: you do that
CitizenKumpart: word to the wise:
CitizenKumpart: when having pancakes delivered, ALWAYS ask for extra syrup
mikebinla: oh
mikebinla: always
mikebinla: i know that
CitizenKumpart: thanks for telling me

Thursday, November 10, 2005

"What's in the box?"

My girlfriend (let us establish her as "Nicole") told me she got someone a box of See's Candies for Christmas once, got them home and promptly opened them to steal a few. She eventually went back and replaced it as a gift with a new box, but still, it cracked me up. I can't say I would do it any differently today though...If I had a box of See's in my possession at this moment, there is nothing that could keep me from it. Such heavenly delights have an irresistible drawing power, much in the way that the Ring of Power seduced all that saw it.

Speaking of chocolate, I find myself in the middle of what I think is clearly the greatest pickle in the history of mankind. So there is this woman I work with..She's not technically my boss, but it is customary for those in my position to give those in her position a holiday gift. So long story short after days and days of fretting over what to get her, I settled on a nice box of chocolates (See's or Godiva) as her potential gift. Then today I find out from someone who works more closely with her that she is diabetic. Greeeeeeeat. It wouldn't actually be that bad since Godiva does have a sugar-free collection, BUT I also found out that she often eats and drinks foods that are definitely not sugar-less if not sugar-ful.

So now what the fuck am I supposed to do? Do I get her the sugar-free because that's the more considerate and thoughtful gift or will she think "Ewww, sugar-free chocolate. I'd rather eat the box." Do I get her the sugar-infested variety which, while spitting in the face of medical wisdom, is what she will really like or will she think to herself "Why the hell would someone give a diabetic person chocolate? Is this guy trying to knock me off or something?" Seriously, I have a 50/50 chance of getting screwed here and potentially sabotaging the professional relationship. This is how people end up getting faux-silver earrings for Christmas.

I think the way to go might be to get a box that mixes the sugar-free and the sugar-ful without any labels. I could get it personalized to read "Russian Roulet: Death By Chocolate."

Bumper Humor

My girlfriend saw the following on a bumper sticker the other day:

Frodo failed. Bush has The Ring.

Regardless of your politics, you've gotta admit that's pretty funny.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

'Tis The Season Y'all

Burning a Pumpkin Pie candle in my office this the Christmas music pumping all 8 hours of the work day...hours upon hours brainstorming for gift ideas and browsing every conceivable website looking for gifts I can feel good about. Yesir, trying to get a jump on the situation this year. The past couple seasons have found me strugging for two solid weeks before Christmas where every minute feels like the last one. That's just the wrong vibe to have when shopping for Christmas gifts. Ya gotta be relaxed, contemplative, in touch with yourself and the entire shopping landscape, and, most importantly, ya need that time to let ideas marinate for a few days. If I rush it, I end up giving gifts I in no way feel confident about and, for me, that is one of the worst feelings. Anyway, I got to thinking about these mistakes, these rushed excuses for thoughful presents that I have sheepishly handed to friends and family over the years...and I started laughing my ass off.

In early high school (think 14), I gave this girl I was hopelessly, unrequitedly in love with a pair of "sterling" silver earrings, a couple bath beads (wtf?) and....I forget what the last part was but it was equally bad. And this was something I had put thought into. We were good friends so I think it was her who told me, quite a bit down the road of course, that these silver-ish dolphin earrings turned her lobes green. Needless to say, our relationship never bloomed beyond friendship.

When we were kids, my friend's dad gave him a Karate Kid t-shirt for Christmas. That might sound cool now, but this was in the stage between when a movie is initially released and when it becomes a classic of the period. I would liken it to someone giving you a Men in Black t-shirt this year. And this was from a parent no less. I'll bet he still wishes he had that Karate Kid shirt though...Maybe his dad was a genius and we're the fools!

Don't get me wrong, I am a sincere believer in the "it's the thought that counts" philosophy. I truly, truly am. When someone gives me a gift, I am always (okay, usually) sincerely touched by the thought and sentiment that is behind it. What I worry about is that the gifts I give will not accurately convey the thoughts and sentiments I am putting behind them...

...Like the time I gave my girlfriend a soapdish.

Not a big fan of lists. To me, it just gets a tad ridiculous if we all exchange lists and then go out and buy each other what we told ourselves to get. Seems kind of pointless to me. I mean, if I buy you the sweater that you listed and provided the item# and color photo for and you get me exactly what I asked for, how is that really different from just buying shit for myself like I do the rest of the year? That's like writing your own wedding vows...for your spouse to read to you.

"And so, Nicole, I wish to tell you that I think you are the most wonderful, most...most....most... Damn it. Honey, what is this word you wrote right here?"

(hands vows to bride)


(bride returns vows to groom)

"Oh right...Most sincere woman I have ever known."

Which reminds me...have you ever gotten an invitation to a birthday party where the birthday boy/girl registered for their gifts? Had I been drinking seltzer the first time I got one of those invites, I seriously think my head would have exploded.

Anyway, that's enough rambling for today. The proverbial whistle has just blown and my girlfriend and I are going to Ikea to check out some affordable solutions for better living. Swedish meatballs if we're lucky. Might even do some Christmas shopping.

Happy (Early) Holidays!

Okay, now I think they're doing this just to fuck with me...

Today I have seen two (!) girls wearing scarves...indoors....with tank tops.

Maybe I should start my own ridiculous fashion....yeah, that'll show 'em. Perhaps this will be incorporated into my ensemble tomorrow...Inappropriate? sure, but talk about cool!

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Hit and Run

About two months ago, I got a random e-mail from a girl I had been friends with in high school but had not had any contact with since. Let's call her "Monica" (since that is her actual name). The e-mail basically was seeing if I was the same John Kumpart she had known and, if so, asking how the hell I was. It was one of those pleasant oh-my-God-it-has-been-years type of deals. So I write back that it is in fact me (I'm pretty sure I'm the only John Kumpart currently alive) and we agree there is far too much lost time to cover via e-mail. A couple days later I give her a call and we rehash our respective lives over the past eight years in order to "catch up." This conversation lasts probably an hour and a half and all is fine and well. Or so I thought...

Since we used to play tennis and both have trouble finding anyone to play with these days, we agree to get together and play a couple sets. We set a date for this Reunion Match. Something comes up and I have to postpone for two weeks, but Monica is agreeable to this. Or so it would seem...

Two days before our rescheduled appointment, I e-mail to confirm. No response. Okay, no big deal, people get busy and sometimes don't have time to check their e-mail. The morning of our scheduled match arrives and I expect my phone to ring since we never did set a specific time or place. No calls. No biggie, sometimes ya just space on these things and completely forget. I move on with my day and give it nary another thought.

Two weeks later, I still have heard nothing from Monica, not by e-mail, phone, nor carrier pigeon. So I e-mail once again simply saying "Hello?" No response. It's now two months (give or take) and still nothing.

Isn't that odd? I can understand if maybe we had gotten together and she had discovered that over the years I had developed into an extraordinary asshole or something, but we never even got that far. And everything seemed fine on the phone. Why go to the trouble to look someone up only to toss them back into the abyss of anonymity? I have a few theories...

1) Her reflection on me was somewhat fond and she looked me up with the intention of testing the potential for some sort of romantic excursion. I am not so arrogant to think this is the probable scenario. It would explain her dropping back off the face of the earth though since I was very forthcoming about the serious relationship I am in when we talked on the phone. Maybe she realized I was off the market and decided to shop elsewhere?

2) She was mortally wounded or killed and has been unable to communicate. I doubt this is the case because if she was killed, the cops would have surely accessed her phone and e-mail records and called me in for questioning. As of now, I have not been contacted by any law enforcement agencies.

3) She is petrified of facing me on a tennis court. Clearly the favorite.

That's all I got. Please, cast your vote or suggest your own theory. It's really not that big a deal. Nothing I'm losing sleep over or anything...just a vexing blank in the crossword puzzle of human behavior (I love metaphors).

The following took place between the hours of 12:00 p.m. and 1:00 p.m.

That's me at CTU Headquarters. During my visit, I foiled three terrorist plots before lunch and beat Jack Bauer in a staring contest.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Of Men and Restrooms

Ya know, I have an easy enough time feeling inadequate about the size of my manhood as it is...I really don't need to be sitting in a stall (just reading, of course) in our restroom here at the office and here some guy at the urinal who sounds like he's dumping a full 10-gallon bucket off a fucking pier. Seriously.

While on the topic of my fellow man and restrooms, what is with these guys who randomly spit? I have seen these men who walk up to a urinal and ritually spit into it before they can begin their urination. I have friends who will out of nowhere just hok one on the street for no apparent reason. What is the appeal of this? I can understand if you're smoking a cigar or chewing tobacco or something, but why just spit for the hell of it? I dunno, maybe I'll try it...


Although it's 95 degrees in Los Angeles on this Ocotber day, the forecast for the rest of the week calls for temperatures in the low 70s...You realize of course what this means. It means that Angelino women (Angelinas?) will be running for their closets to break out their winter scarves!

I picture the women of Los Angeles living in a large firehouse of sorts and when the temperature drops even a half a degree lower than 76, a loud, blaring scarf alarm sounds, prompting the residents to scamper for their scarves as quickly as possible, some even sliding down poles in order to get to their nearest Starbucks or outdoor mall with scarf in tow.

Seriously, there is absolutely no need to wear a scarf in L.A. and certainly not in October. On the coldest, stormiest, windiest day in January, I might be able to make an exception, but any other time is clearly needless acessorizing for the sake of fashion. It's like when you see guys wearing beanies in the middle of the day in July, no matter how good it looks, it's still ridiculous.

These women need to be stopped. One of these days, I'm gonna snap and just yank one of these damn scarves.

Is this thing on?

(Starter's Pistol fires into the air)

And thus, my new blog begins. I never thought I'd be a blog bigamist but what can I tell ya, SoapboxSports was not fulfilling my needs and I think I have a right to be happy. I don't aim to be entertaining with this one. God help me if I take the bait and try to be funny. If this blog ever becomes interesting, I assure you it will most certainly be by accident. No, I am simply looking to unload some excess mental baggage and from time to time do a little howling at the moon.