Thursday, August 21, 2008

Who? Me?


Must confess I haven't been watching the Olympics. Yawn. Haven't paid much attention to the popular media at all lately - no IDEA what's going on in the world aside from the obvious things I read on news sites on-line. The war, the election, more shite in Georgia, big plane crash, environmental doom, blah, blah, blah. Yeah, I KNOW. Maybe I should stick my head out of my little warren more often, but I can't be bothered.

My TV is only on lately for baseball games (which I'm only paying passing attention to as I wander the house going "yougonnacleanthisup? yougonnapickthatup? yougonnacooksomething? where's'atbook? catonthelawn! CATONTHELAWN!") and my Netflix DVDs.

RE: The Netflix DVDs. Thanks to Kim and FMC for the Black Books suggestion - it is BRILLIANT. I want a Dylan Moran of my own. Oh yes I do. The scene in the first episode where he's trying to do his taxes and screaming at the instruction booklet is basically a distillation of my inner soul - my inner spirit, made manifest, if you will. What I'm trying to say is that is the normal state of my head. With a soundtrack by Nick Cave. I recognize one of my tribe when I see one. And I'm completely convinced that anything involving Bill Bailey is going to be very, very good indeed.

The Peep Show is also damn funny, but I've only watched a few episodes so far. That's one of those shows that you wince in vicarious embarrassment for the characters, in the same way you are agonizingly entertained by The Office or that scene in Cheers where Woody sings the Kelly song. You just go "oh, don't." And they DO, and you're just uncomfortable as hell, but you watch anyway, even though it's an exquisite agony.

Also, MI-5 is fun. I believed it's called "Spooks" over in the UK. Obviously can't call it that over here, that wouldn't go down well at all. It's so subtle you have to crank the volume to hear the dialogue and then get blasted out of your seat when something explodes, but that's a small price to pay for entertainment that doesn't talk down to - and assumes basic intelligence in - its audience.

Someone has also recently pointed me in the direction of Little Britain. So far, so good - though I'm wondering whether this same set of characters and sketches will get old after a few more episodes. The horrible chav schoolgirl is genius, but the guy who's turned on by the granny is just creepy and tough to watch. We'll see where this goes.

What else? What else...?

Oh, work. I suppose I should do some. Boo.

Out of the pool. OUT!

It starts innocently enough. A few minor, light-hearted insults over e-mail, an issue or two discussed, worked out (so you think) and the occasional light-hearted reprimand for some imagined slight. Not fun, not comfortable, but you put it behind you, give the other party the benefit of the doubt, call it hormones, life changes, a bad mood, bad meds, bad day, what have you.

Then it begins to build steam. Suddenly, gifts you give are criticized, and the issues and imagined slights get bigger. The insults become more unfair and hurtful. You're to blame for this person's sense of loneliness and isolation even though they're the ones who moved 50 miles away and resent you because you don't shift your whole life out to them. Also, every bad thing in the world is only happening to them, and no one else could POSSIBLY have it as bad as they do - even though they literally have everything they ever said they wanted in the first place. And you realize you can do absolutely nothing right in this person's eyes. Just being you is wrong.

But you keep trying to be cheerful, never let on that this person's behavior and attitude is starting to really smell - and you HOPE against HOPE they're not building up to some kind of showdown or battle. But you know they are, and you can't stop it. And though it gets harder and harder, you keep your communications light, and as supportive as you possibly can. You make jokes, you try your best to get them to see the other side of things - try to get them to have fun, try to get them to appreciate all that they have, and that whatever problems or issues they're going through are temporary, and even though life seems to be crap right now, there are people in the world who have it a SHITLOAD worse, and for a lot longer.

And then what once was a great, warm, supportive, fun friendship is down the toilet because in a moment of insanity YOU TRIED TO MAKE THEM LAUGH by making a joke about a subject that THEY THEMSELVES brought up. I mean to say...How DARE you? Tch. Such audacity! How CAN you be so insensitive as to make a joke, the same kind of joke this person has been laughing at with you for YEARS? You horrible, mean, crass, insensitive cow!

Whew! Had to get that off my chest. I'm all done. This topic will never come up again. Ever.

Fuck, catharsis, what?

Friday, August 15, 2008

Three days left

Last weekend of vacation is upon me. After Sunday, I shall wave goodbye to the Captain, set the alarm for 6-bloody-AM, and rejoin the working world. I have terribly mixed feelings about this. On the one hand, I'm a bit bored now and won't mind being back in a routine. On the other, let that alarm go off Monday morning and I'll be whinging and moaning that I want another week off. I also kind of got spanked in the weather department this time around, and didn't have money to spend, so I wasn't able to really capitalize on the time off, aside from just being able to putter around the house, get through a couple of books, devote more time to working out, and just relax a bit. Still, I did get through The Origin of Species, and (thanks to YouTube) watched every available episode of a bunch of shows I'd been missing either because they're on when I don't want to be in front of the TV or they're only available in the UK.

Speaking of UK television, can I just say how much BBC America sucks? Seems like they only have about a dozen or so shows in rotation, some of them so old and moldy I don't know why they bother. Checked out their line up and here's what's available to the US audience:

Teen Transsexual
Cash in the Attic
Antiques Roadshow
Graham Norton
Bargain Hunt
How Clean is Your House?

Fucking hell - and where's the comedy you may well fucking ask... Well, I'll tell you, in an age when people in the UK are getting such brilliant programming as QI, do you know what we're getting over here for English comedy?


I mean, FELLAS! Let it go! It was great, but 30 years have passed! Why is the assumption that US viewers who like English comedy are ONLY interested in Monty Fucking Python?

Still, at least it's not Are You Being Served. That's on PBS. The 'arty' station.

I fear.

Anyway, it's cocktail hour where I am, how about you?

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

...Sitting down to enjoy my holiday...

This is my vacation buddy. Isn't he grand? He's versatile, mixes well, tastes wonderful, doesn't leave a hangovery residue, and keeps his mouth shut.

That's it. I just logged in to say that. Now the Captain's giving me that come hither look and I must return to the laziest holiday of my adult life.

If I can just work up the energy to make more ice...