Tuesday, October 30, 2007

What I Should Have Said

I'm known as a quiet guy. Some of you think I hold nothing back, that I'm too forthcoming. Others believe the opposite.

Looking back on my life, I realize that there are a lot of things I've wanted to say but haven't. I'm sure all of you have experienced this. So, today I give you:

Things I've Wanted To Say To People in My Life But Have Never Said

To Ashley, the girl in my creative writing study group in my junior year of college: I wasn't asking you out. I was asking you if you were going to Tony Roma's in Stadium Village to meet the rest of the group. You weren't my type anyway. You looked too much like Blair from Facts of Life.

To Dr. XXXXXXX, the professor for whom I was a T.A. back in grad school in Minnesota: If I was the "lowest performing T.A." in all your years of teaching, as you said on my answering machine, why did you hire me back for 3 subsequent semesters? Admit it, my performance was stellar.

To Noreen, my classmate in junior high: Yes, I should have reacted to your comely come-ons with at least a nod or a look or something. Instead, I just sat there in the library silently, plotting the next Hardy Boys book I'd read.

To Chris, the leprechaun-looking guy in the Saturday morning breakfast club I belonged to in the late 90s: You're an asshole. I'll order whatever the hell I want to order. And yeah that includes egg whites.

That's all for today.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

I Tell Myself That Every Day

Today I walked down Larchmont, stuck in the middle of the massive crowd at the annual Larchmont Family Fest. It was a sea of strollers, dogs, couples, and babies.

I don't own a stroller. I don't have a dog. I don't have a baby. I have 2 cats. I'm only part of a couple part of the time.

But I didn't exactly feel out of place there. The middle class/upper middle class middle L.A. elite are just people, like you or I or my neighbors with their unique affinity for the live recordings of the 1970s band America (speaking of which, I HAVE been in the desert on a horse with no name and I HAVE spent time on the Ventura Highway. I've lived those songs.)

Okay, it wasn't a horse. It was - and I'm being honest here - a camel.

It may not have been in the Egyptian desert. It may have been in a New Jersey petting zoo. I'll contact family for confirmation.

Fuck Ventura.

Anyway, back to the family fest and the shrill endless whir of the monied family dynamic. I just wanted to get through the crowd, to get a bagel, and find an indoor seat at Peet's. That's all I wanted.

I got what I wanted.

I finished the Sunday New York Times crossword puzzle, with one mistake. In 22 minutes. My record is still 19:50. My zero mistake record is somewhere around 30 minutes. And I forgot for a second that I lived alone with 2 cats, a surly cat man on the top of a special hill. Yes, I want to push a child in a stroller down the street on a Sunday. It's a cliche but an okay one.

So, I don't really have what I want. Still, I sit on my couch, Seymour clinging to my side like a 20-pound piece of purring ham. I had a really good bagel earlier. I have a good parking space. Things are good.

(And last night I heard a story, the greatest true story I've ever heard. Wow. I'd write about it here but I think I might save it for something big.)

Friday, October 26, 2007

Forget Your Name

The last 15 hours of my life have been a whirlwind of horrible engine sounds, tow trucks, sitcoms, howling cats, and carbohydrates. Now, I'm safely settled in my cool clean office and I never want to leave here even if it's pretty nice outside.

The good news: that soul-crushing sound coming from the engine (a sound witnessed others, not just me) is gone, replaced by a gentle four-cylinder whir.

The bad news: it could come back at any time.

The weekend is here. My plans include: finishing the screenplay (really), seeing at least one movie (maybe alone, but that's how it goes), and emerging victorious at the monthly poker game in the 626 (you've been warned, though I don't think any of my opponents read this blog.) Halloween parties? Still no invitations but whatever - no one would understand my Paul Auster costume (black shirt, black pants, dark circles under the eyes).

This is several years old but it popped up on my iPod yesterday: William Shatner and Joe Jackson singing Pulp's Common People. It's brilliant mainly for Jackson's performance. You can probably ignore overly literal homemade video that accompanies the song.

Two basketball notes: I couldn't live without this Timberwolves blog. And I wouldn't want to live without freedarko's player-centric NBA preview. Wow. (Link is for part 1 - don't forget 2 and 3.)

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

The Man Who Saved My Life

Yesterday's post about parking lots in which I've slept reminded me that I have never told you the story of how this man saved my life:

I don't mean this in a joking, figurative way. He really saved my life.

It was the summer of 1985. I was 19. My friend Patrick and I had just driven - without stopping - from Minnesota to New Jersey. My family was staying at the beach house of my sister's then fiance (better known as the principle protagonist in the "the story no one in my family will ever acknowledge") in Atlantic Highlands, NJ, about an hour's drive from Patrick's house in River Vale. We had taken naps in the car, alternating turns behind the wheel. I dropped Patrick off around 10:00PM and drove south to the shore. I was tired. I should have found a parking lot. I should have slept.

Patrick had loaned me a cassette of Joe Piscopo's comedy album. Yeah, there was a time that the nation found him funny. I thought listening to someone do comedy bits would keep me awake better than music. I struggled to stay alert as I neared the beach house. I opened the window, hoping the breeze would keep me awake. I closed it because the breeze was numbing me.

I was a few miles away from the house when Piscopo's painfully unfunny Honeymooners Rap played on the cassette. This was a song he performed with Eddie Murphy. In it, they portray the Ed Norton and Ralph Kramden characters from the old TV show The Honeymooners. The joke was already old in 1985. Murphy and Piscopo are rapping because this was considered funny in 1985. Anyway, I fell asleep during the song. It was the only time I ever fell asleep behind the wheel. I was out for a few seconds when, in my dream mind, I heard Piscopo's exceedingly shrill voice screaming the name "Norton" over and over again (to which Murphy echoed "Ralphie Boy) in the bizarre call-and-response section of the song. If it wasn't for Piscopo's nasally over-the-top whiny voice, I wouldn't have been stirred awake in time to avoid driving over a median strip and into oncoming traffic (multiple cars, going 55+ mph). Any other singer wouldn't have woke me. Murphy's smooth deep voice kept me in a lull. It was Piscopo that shook me out of my slumber.

I'll never forget.


This morning, driving to work on Exposition Boulevard just east of Vermont, I saw a giant stuffed animal face down on the sidewalk. Not being able to see the face, I can only assume this animal was a bear. It was definitely bear-sized. One of its legs hung over the curb and had clearly been dirtied or run over by passing cars. I will never get this image out of my head. I wish I had a camera with me. If you're in the area, look for it. It's probably still there.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Parking Lots I've Slept In

Place: Southtown Mall parking lot, Bloomington, MN
Time: June 1986
Car: 1977 AMC Hornet or 1984 Mazda GLC, not sure which one
Context: I had just spent the night in the hospital, having taken my friend John there after a fast-closing parking structure stairway door mangled his hand. After his release, we had breakfast (along with John #2 and Lynn) at Perkin's. As I was driving home from dropping Lynn off in Richfield, I felt tired. I parked my car in the Southtown lot and slept for an hour or so. I'm amazed I didn't just drive home. I only lived 10 minutes away.

Place: Hard Rock Hotel/Casino parking lot, Las Vegas
Time: October 2004
Car: 2000 Toyota Camry
Context: I was driving from Los Angeles to some godforsaken town in the middle of Arizona. On the way there, I stopped in Las Vegas with the intention of spending the night in a hotel. Instead, I gambled for a few hours and, realizing the sun was about tome up, I decided to just sleep in the car instead. As I drove out of the lot, I listened to Stay Loose by Belle & Sebastian. Over and over again.

Place: Gas station/truck stop parking lot, central Iowa, off of I-80
Time: May 2006
Car: 2006 Saturn VUE
Context: My cousin Sharif and I were driving from San Francisco to Chicago. We were tired. There were three cats in the car, so sleeping in the rented SUV was better than traumatizing the cats with a motel room. It was hot. Humid. I don't remember how long I was asleep. Maybe 15 minutes. Maybe 2 hours.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

List Saturday

5 Things From the 1970s That I Miss
1. Ubiquity of the saxophone
2. Better soft pretzels
3. Boxier cars
4. Gatefold sleeves
5. I can only think of 4

5 Things From Now That I Like
1. Vitamin Water (XXX Flavor)
2. Better TV shows
3. Basketball blogs
4. Ubiquity of basil
5. CVS gift cards (strangely, I keep getting them... for free)

4 Most Surprising Things About Californication (the Showtime series)
1. David Duchovny nails this role better than anyone has a right to.
2. Despite the story lines often being preposterous and gratuitous, I relate to the struggles of the main characters (though my nipple has never been torn off and my blog has a much better title).
3. I can see what they all see in each other.
4. I hated the first episode and then completely changed my mind.

Top Cities Where My Relationships Have Ended*
1. Santa Monica (3)
2. Los Angeles (2)
3. (tie) Los Angeles, Denver**, Milwaukee, Sherman Oaks, CA, Warrington, PA (1 each)
*This includes break-ups and "breaks"
**I was in Denver, she was somewhere else

Top 5 Chick-Fil-A Sandwich Experiences
1. Orange, CA, 2007
2. Phoenix, 1996
3. Montgomeryville, PA, 1981
4. Cerritos, CA, 1991
5. Atlanta, 1999

Worst 2 Comedies Ever
1. Dodgeball
2. Bowfinger

3 Things the World Will Say When John From Cincinnati Comes Out on DVD
1. Why did they cancel this?
2. What can we do to get them to make more?
3. Why didn't we support this when it was on the air?

Friday, October 19, 2007

The Survivors

I do a lot of self-reflection these days. Too much of it actually. I've done more of it in the last 2 years and 8 months than I did in the previous 39+ years. Sometimes, it's exhilarating. Often, it's tedious. I tell them the same stories, draw the same conclusions, and get the same reactions.

It's good to figure something new out. Or at least re-access something old. I thought about love recently - how it feels differently to me now than it did when I was a much younger man. Between the ages of 18 and 25, love felt bigger, stronger, more elusive, and less real. Today and for the last 16 years, it feels more like a product, something inevitable and deserved, the next step in a series of drawn-out processes and strange needless promises.

Is it innocence I long for? Or just plain wonder? Have I grown callous and cynical? No, no, and no. It's just the bigness of love I strive for. Even when love is a lie (or at least a misunderstanding), it's better when it's big and unwieldy - something that makes you write bad poems and hear what you've never heard before in great songs.

It was a song that got me here. Last Saturday, I was driving in my car with its 3/4 working engine and tinny stereo. I was listening to a CD that's followed me around, haphazardly, since the beginning of this decade - Your Favorite Music by Clem Snide. It's a hard batch of songs to listen to, on a bad stereo in a loud car. The songs are quiet and some words are whispered.

I usually skipped the final song on the album - a cover of Ritchie Valens' Donna - for two reasons: 1) the original is pretty perfect; and 2) it seemed a strange choice in covers - a modern band doing a relatively simple slow maudlin song from 40+ years back. I didn't see how ground could be broken. But, tired from a day of driving nowhere, I forgot to eject the CD and the last song began:

I knew a girl and Donna was her name
Since she left me, I've never been the same

Now it's not the cut-and-dried lost love sentiment that got me this time. Those songs are everywhere. It was just the name - Donna. And a thought back to 1983 and 1984 when (and I'm about to get all sappy) I fell in love for the first time. Her name was Donna. We worked together at a fast food restaurant in suburban Philadelphia. And to this day I have no idea why I loved her. She was pretty, but in a plain way. She drove a Comet, which was sort of cool. She laughed at my jokes and listened to what I had to say and said a few things of interest herself. Now that I list the reasons, they seem quite valid. Of course I was painfully shy then. And this love went unrequited and I moved to Minnesota and she went off to college in some rural western Pennsylvania town and we lost touch with each other. It was probably for the best. Her parents were staunch anti-abortionists, paying for the town's one pro-life billboard. Politically, it would have been difficult.

But it didn't matter that nothing was consummated with the girl in the light blue Comet. The memory of that which never happened is good enough, is big enough.

There would be other loves from my more youthful days, most existing in my mind and heart and nowhere else. The only other one I want to write about today is Kate. I don't need to list the reasons for loving her. I need no reminding. She was simply the coolest girl, the baddest ass, the sweetest sugar in all of mid-80s Minneapolis. She dressed in black. She once called Prince "nothing more than a little shit from north Minneapolis." She had long brown hair and sad big eyes. She ran away from home (and came back). She liked Springsteen (and punk).

For a very brief time, Kate and I worked together at the movie theater. And one night after work, we had our only date. January, 1985. Actually, it wasn't exactly a date because it wasn't only us. Another co-worker, Kevin, invited us over to his house for pizza and a movie (on the then-revolutionary VHS tape). Kevin was a strange one - lanky and jovial (unless he was drinking), he worshiped Bruce Springsteen and nothing/nobody else. We got along well, me and Kevin. I tried writing a novel about him.

We picked up a deep dish pizza from the Green Mill, itself an odd choice given that we usually went to this place. From there, Kevin drove to his house and Kate and I followed, in my blue AMC Hornet. The drive from 45th and Drew (where Kate lived; she had to get something) to 40th and Wentworth (where Kevin lived) is a short jaunt across southwest Minneapolis, ten minutes at most. But given that I felt untapped love for the girl next to me made the trip seem like forever. It was snowing, for God's sake.

The rest of the night went like this: We saw the movie - The Survivors, starring Walter Matthau and Robin Williams. We ate the pizza and I may have had some underage beer (Kate was 17, I was 19, Kevin was 27... seems almost criminal now that I think back). Kevin got drunk, and had a screaming fight with his mother, with whom he lived (alone). Kate and I were uncomfortable because of Kevin's drunkenness and anger but we stayed for the end of the movie. Someone in the movie was Russian. I drove Kate home. That drive seemed short. There was no more snow, I made no move, said no words stronger than "good night." We listened to my cassette of Born in the U.S.A.

What's my point in telling this story? Nothing other than the fact that this was my favorite night, of all the nights in my life. That something - the world, the future, music, the universe - seemed big and momentous on that night. Since then, everything has gotten smaller. And truer. But I miss the bigness.

Years later, on the night the first Gulf War started, I called Kate. I still knew her phone number from 1985, a number I had memorized and never before called (come on, Ali!). She had moved to California and back to Minnesota. So had I. She asked how I knew her number (good memory, I said.) She asked how I knew she was back in town (I told her a lie; in truth, I broke a law, or at least breached an ethic.) We talked for two hours that night. Her ex-boyfriend was in the war. She missed northern California. I missed southern California. I didn't like the war. We went on and on, telling histories and I got nowhere close to telling her a word of how I felt. Looking back, I probably didn't want to. We talked one more time after that, for a much shorter time. Then everything big faded to small.

I don't know where Kate is now. Her last name is too common to Google, although someone with her name writes really good short stories, full of lesbian love between college professors. Donna, on the other hand, had an uncommon last name, which I'm sure she's given up to marriage since then. If not, then I'm glad she found work as a Recorder of Deeds.

Back to the Clem Snide song. I felt the "big" in Eef Barzelay's tiny vocal. He was made small by losing Donna. By song's end, the words are still small but they're seeking some kind of redemption, from within the singer. This song would not be the first step in getting Donna back, just a way of making him remember, making her remember him.

So, that's my revelation: I remembered what it felt like when love was big.

(Postscript, added 3 hours later)

I realize that I've conveniently glossed over all of my relationships in the past 16 years and how they relate to what I have to say. But you didn't really want me to talk about that, did you?

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Power is Knowing

I continue to be inscrutable. That's just the way it goes.

Yesterday's list disappoints me. The songs were good but the writing and pictures should have been better.

Phoenix Sun star Amare Stoudamire gets two tattoos: one says Knowledge is Power; the other reads Knowledge is Knowing. And freedarko responds with two of the best pieces you'll ever read about Heidegger, Foucault, post-colonial thought, and the slam dunk.

The 40 Worst Lyricists in Rock. They're wrong about #13. They're way too hard on #1 (he belongs at #37). #23 should be #3. #26 should be #2. #10 should be #1. But other than that, it's perfect. The lyrical snippers in #17 and #16 are hilarious.

If you asked me what 90s rock icon would be writing a staggeringly long and fantastically over-enthusiastic blog entry about the music of The Negro Problem and Stew, Adam Duritz of Counting Crows wouldn't have my top 5. But there he is.

Go see Michael Clayton. On a related note, the older I get, the more people (2 of them) tell me I look like George Clooney. According to experts, he was the sexiest man alive last year. What does that make me?

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Top 11 Linkable (For Now) Songs of the First 290 Days of 2007

11. Love Song of the Buzzard - Iron and Wine
Nice song. Nice steel guitar.

10. Elephant Gun - Beirut
Listen to this song exactly three times. One time, it's annoying. Twice, it's jarring. Three times, it's amazing. Four or more? Annoying again.

9. Australia - The Shins
Catchy, cool, swiftly special.

8. Chocolate Rain - Tay Zonday
Best video on this list.

7. Peacebone - Animal Collective
If I could find a link to their best song of the year, For Reverend Green, I'd put it in the top 3. But it's not out there so you can't hear it.

6. AYO Technology - 50 Cent (featuring Justin Timberlake and Timbaland)
Why do I feel this song will be played often in strip clubs all over the world?

5. BlackMen Ski - Stew
Yes, Stew, they do.

4. Ex Guru - Fiery Furnaces
Who doesn't love the guitar at the beginning?

3. Love To A Monster - Okkervil River
The only link I could find is this live (I think) version from youtube. The camera's shaky and the studio version is definitely more powerful and angrier. But this is nice too. Sadly, the song is only available as an "e-music exclusive." It's not on the official release of their great new album. Best lines:

I hope you get angry and hurt and have the hardest of landings
And I hope your new man thinks of me when he sees what a number I did on you

2. I'm Not Gonna Teach Your Boyfriend How To Dance With You - Black Kids
Yes it's true. I like sing-songy anthems sung with youthful exuberance. I always have. I always will.

1. LDN - Lily Allen
Yeah this song came out last year in England but it wasn't officially released in the U.S. until January so I'm obligated to put it here, at #1, where it belongs.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Bruce Springsteen IS Bill Cosby

Yesterday, while contemplating the fact that I am truly getting closer to a self-understanding that will blow away all my other self-understandings AND while confronting, for the first time in my driving life, an actual constantly flashing check engine light, I came to a realization. I was listening to Bruce Springsteen's Blinded By The Light and was struck by the resemblance between Springsteen's vocal delivery in that song to Bill Cosby's clenched-jaw-schticky cranky old man dialect. I think Bruce was actually impersonating Bill in the studio on that 1971 afternoon. Or maybe it was nighttime.

Bill wasn't a grumpy old man in '71 but his stand up routine was decidedly grumpy. And funny. He was famous for his comedy and acting, famous enough that the fledgling singer-songwriter from New Jersey would mimic the Cos in an attempt to draw fans to something familiar on his first album.

Listen to the first few verses of Bruce's original recording (unavailable online as far as I can tell) and you'll see what I mean.

Interestingly, their lives have paralleled each other in significant ways:
1. Although Bill is older than Bruce and began his career earlier, they both were beloved figures in the 1970s and continue to be to this day. Who doesn't love the Jello dude? What's not to love about the Dancing in the Dark guy? Bill and Bruce currently have respected old man and respected middle-aged man status, respectively.

2. They both reached their commercial peak in the mid-80s - Bill with his seminal show, Cosby, Bruce with Born IN the U.S.A. #1 album/flag/ass on the cover thing. I preferred The River but then I'm known as an iconoclast.

3. They could arguably be considered spokespersons for their slightly different generations.

4. They each have made one colossal mistake: With Cosby, it was Leonard Part 6. With Springsteen, it was when someone told him it was okay to whisper and half-speak his vocals on the acoustic songs when they should have been telling him to throw in some Cos-esque overenunciation.

5.Each has performed a controversial action in the last few years: Bill made some famous comments about pound cake. And Bruce discusses the horrified reactions his fans have when they see him in strip club parking lots in VH1's Storytellers, referenced here.

Friday, October 12, 2007

B(link) Or You'll Miss It

My new favorite writer. (Watch the video.)

The progression of The Office:
Season 1: Not as good as the British version
Season 2: Better than the British version
Season 3: What British version?
Season 4 (so far): Subtlly brilliant
(It's like a hot circle of garbage!)

I'm almost finished with this book. The final third is amazing.

Synergy = Bowie + Target.

Hey it's Clem Snide (the best band of the '00s) covering I'll Be Your Mirror - the best song by the Velvet Underground (the best band of the '60s). What could go wrong? Nothing.

Why haven't you read Milfwaukee?

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Cornrows, Widows

I could have slept until noon.

But it's Wednesday - can't park on that side of the street Wednesday - and I had to wake up. Plus, I had to come here (the office).

Here's some news that's truly unfathomable (in a good way).

Plus... new stuff (finally) at the poetry site.

Is the Coffee Bean's chocolate chip twist truly reduced fat? Seems impossible.

Could this post be any more boring? Just listen to Ex Guru by The Fiery Furnaces instead.

Friday, October 05, 2007

We're Too Busy Singing To Put Anybody Down

Today the band is playing all of their songs, medley-style. They're particularly raucous, while at the same time being tight as a Level 42 electronic drum solo.

A guy with a tuba just walked past my sliding glass door. He could barely fit between the door and the fence.

Did they just do the Rolling Stones' Bitch? Yes they did.

The band is a marching band. For a university. The one I work for.

Meanwhile, the streets of Hollywood are full of famous guys named Andy. And though the tree at the bottom of my hill is gone, affording me a delicious view, I feel for the tree itself - dead for no reason, at the hands of the men in the ugly house. It's bad enough they put signs on their trash cans, proclaiming ownership.

Now it's the theme to the Monkees. And Time Warp. What happened to Tusk? That's what I want to hear.

I woke up in my bedroom this morning to my orchestral cellphone alarm, snoozed for the fifth time. I could tell it was going to be a beautiful day. Seymour concurred and didn't even ask for food, demurely waiting for me to fill his half-fill bowl.

This has been a slice of my life, on an uneventful day. I'll supplement it with words that add detail: falafel, crossword puzzle, bookcase, 12th place, Caribou.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

My Top 10 Blog Posts

In honor of my 400th post yesterday, today I offer my most ego-driven post ever: My Top 10 Blog Posts:

10. Billy vs. Neil, 12/9/05
One of many self-indulgent music posts, but the only one to make the list. I proved a minor point with pointless reasons and made myself laugh every time I read it. Hey hey, I didn't start the fire but I'm here to spread its glowering beauty.

9. The Streetballer, 4/28/06
A story from my youth, told in a manner that makes the events seem more monumental than they were. And they were very monumental.

8. The Greatest Thing Anyone Has Ever Said, 5/22/06
Being that this is a true story about the greatest thing ever said, it should have made the top 5. If I truly nailed it, it would have been number one. But I didn't get it quite right, so it slips to #8.

7. Fairly Dickensian, 3/16/05
One of many self-indulgent college basketball posts, but the only one to make the list. This was more than an incredibly long entry about the NCAA tournament. It was my first incredibly long entry about the NCAA tournament. And you never forget your first time. The story about the dentist is particularly good.

6. Moving On Up, Down The Road, 6/2/05
A lovingly, accurately rendered tale from "The Santa Monica Years."

5. I still owe you for the hole in the floor, 5/15/07
80% of the top 5 is from 2007. Have I become a better writer? No. Have I become a better blogger? Yes. This is a rambling, shambling piece about seven things at once. I love it.

4. Orange, 1/30/07
Sometimes the best memories are the ones that come from anticipation.

3. Kirby, 3/8/06
There are two memory posts about the 80s (#9, #4), several about the 00s, and this lone representative of that greatest of decades, the 90s. After my still laudable Oscar commentary, I give you a truly memorable night from 1991. I ruminate about death. I miss them all. I like the comments. Also, my first entry with pictures.

2. English Is My Second Language, 4/10/07
I try to communicate my communication difficulties. I want everyone to know these things. But everyone already knew.

1. The Women In My Family, 9/12/07
It's not perfect. It could have been better. But it's here because it's honest and funny and likely the basis for everything that's ever been.

Monday, October 01, 2007


Another milestone has been achieved. This is my 400th post. A lot has happened since the first post back in February of 2005. Here's a sampling of what's new in my life since then:
I prefer non-fat milk in my lattes instead of soy, thus returning to my 1998-2002 ways.

I'm beginning to rethink of position on the film Magnolia. It may not have been a great enough film for me to bother writing a letter to the editor of City Pages, protesting its critic's negative review.

Sometimes I think I'm smarter than I actually am.

I understand the contribution of Oates, vis a vis Hall.

I have a greater appreciation for the songs The Rising by Bruce Springsteen, Talk Talk by Talk Talk, and Lose Yourself by Eminem.

I no longer subscribe to magazines, though I still read them.

I like Macs.

I'm thankful for what I've got.

I have so many goddamn regrets.

I have a secret crush on XXXXXXXX XXXXXX, who plays the XXXX of XXX XXXXXX on that one show. She's hot.

I love being right and I'm hardly ever wrong.

I'm not as excited about microwave popcorn.

I moved.

Only once.

No, twice.

I used to be frustrated.

Now I try to be anything but exasperated.

I like Pasadena more than I used to, Glendale about the same.

I'll wear a white T-shirt if urged to.
(Technically, there have been more than 400 posts. I've deleted a few - either because I've changed my mind about their quality or I've been unpleasantly surprised to see how many people get to my blog by searching certain unappealing word combinations. But this is #400 for the time being, so...)