Sunday, November 14, 2010


Another week in the books. I have a little weekly calendar Ma gave me that I use to write my schedule down in. All the scheduling is done online and I still check it daily (pretty much every time I fire my machine up to find the on-ramp to the information superhighway which is usually more than once a day but whatever..) but I still write it down every week. I have paydays written in there, too. Because I'm an anal-retentive dork. But the calendar has a little ribbon that is sewn into the binding and acts as a bookmark so it's always nice to turn the page on weeks after my last shift. Earlier in the summertime this would sometimes happen on Thursdays, and let me tell you in case you don't know: It feels GREAT to end a week on a Thursday. UN-BE-LIEVABLE. Since I've gotten back this has happened on Saturday once, then Friday, and this week Saturday again. One day weekends are pretty lame but sometimes I've got to work to live the lifestyle I've become accustomed to.


Both times I've headed back out here Ma has stuck a little note in my effects along with a small bit of spending monies. The notes are sweet. The money certainly isn't necessary but I've yet to find the note before I've left the state so once it crosses state lines I consider un-gifting in poor taste so I find ways to spend it. This time around I was instructed to buy something nice for my new apartment. I bought tequila shots for my roommate and some friends on Halloween. That brought good karma to the place, so in turn thank you, Ma, for allowing me to purchase good karma for my new living situation.

I don't really stress about furniture and that sort of junk. The place came “mostly” furnished with beds in each room and a couple of couches and a TV and a kitchen table (with chairs!!) and enough kitchenware to more or less get by, so about the only thing I kind of could use is a reading lamp and maybe a small fan. However, I've gotten by without those for the last couple of weeks so I don't really see a point in getting them when I've been managing fine without them. For instance, I've needed a soap dish, too. But this time around when I opened a new bar of soap instead of opening it from the side-like I cut the top off. PRESTO: soap dish. You can give me shit about being cheap all you want but it's creative frugality and I'm fairly certain it'll pay off somewhere, somehow down the line. You can write that down.

I guess it's just I see people move out here and then spend A LOT of money to start out. People get here, get settled for a couple of months and everything is gravy and they decide, “Well, I'm here, I might as well ship my car out here as well as a bunch of my home-shit.” Only to see them leave six months later and ship cars and home-shits right back. When all the while they had been getting by fine beforehand without any of that hoopla. To me that's just basic, need-based economics. I don't need a car, ergo I don't buy one and sold mine back home. Some additional comforts are nice, but why not pick up a cheap-ass Maui hoopty for half the price of shipping a car one way? Maybe it's just I don't feel like I need all that much to live comfortably.  Counter to what is certainly an overly consumer-rich culture we have here in the ol' U.S.of A., more is not always better.  Some people poke fun at my bike but biking around is some of the most fun I have out here. It feels like freedom. And that's what America is about, right (I know Dodge says America is about cars AND freedom but fuck that noise..)?  

I'm pretty sure I posted this very early on in the 'Pad's history, circa late 2008, but I believe Time's article on The 100 Challenge should be examined (or reexamined, for those of you who have been here from jump..) by us all.  
"It comes down to the products vs. the promise," says organizational consultant Peter Walsh, who characterizes himself as part contractor, part therapist. "It's not necessarily about the new pots and pans but the idea of the cozy family meals that they will provide. People are finding that their homes are full of stuff, but their lives are littered with unfulfilled promises."
Maybe this is all to say that I've grown quite content with my daily and weekly routines.
This is a very nice feeling for me. My job certainly isn't perfect; a well-trained but drunken monkey could easily perform the mostly mindless, quite mundane tasks of clearing glasses, wiping tables, filling ice buckets, and emptying trash cans. But, shit, the money's alright in my book for performing said tasks. The vast majority of the people I work with thoroughly enjoy what they do. I've never been involved with any kind of true office work but I don't think this can be said of most offices. Everywhere employment is just a means to an end, but out here the end is, well, a pristine landscape and beautiful weather.

But, hell, I finish a shift at work, walk downstairs to change into boardshorts and 100 feet later I'm in the ocean. There's a lot to be said for that. My rides to and from work, while warm, are just another chance to intake some Vitamin-D or burn a few calories from the free meal I just consumed, respectively. Same goes for the weekly-ish shopping trips to Lahaina: exercise and cosmic rays. The remaining hours are filled with beaches, books, beers, and bars, to highlight four nouns that start with the letter B for a little Sesame Street shout out..

Speaking of transportation, I enjoy being in places long enough to be dialed into traffic patterns. On my bike ride to work I ride down a decent sized hill on a golf course that brings me out onto a little parkway right in front of where I work. When I'm at the top of the hill I can tell, based on where cars are at on this parkway, if I'll be able to charge across the road without stopping or actually have to slow down for the STOP sign. I always like it when I can pass three or four rented cars riding on the wrong side of the road and then scream across the street as the cars just sit there confused about which direction they are supposed to go. More or less tourists are a pain in the ass but if they didn't rent the cars I'd be out of a job so KEEP COMING TO THE WEST SIDE OF MAUI.
When I ride I generally ride how you're supposed to ride a bike.  You know, with traffic, on the road not the sidewalk, simple shit like that but it still baffles me how many touristing motorists get downright PISSED when they have to slow down because of a bike. If a car pulls out across the street anywhere close to me I try to speed up in hopes one day I'll be able to ghostride my Schwinn right into the side of that asshat and RUIN his dickhead, in-a-hurry, fucking day. Yeah, I swore. These shitty drivers deserve it. If I ever get hit by some moron and I'm able to get up from it you can bet your ass shortly after I'll have a broken right hand and an aggravated assault charge pending. Bikes = cars. Get it right or pay the price. Speak into the mic. I've got a backup mic right here. If you're hungry I'll fix you a hand sangwich.
This is not to say I put myself in a high degree of danger when I ride; I'm actually quite defensive and very heads-up outside of riding with headphones in my ears jamming out and having no lights whatsoever. When I work a night shift I'll wear a light colored shirt home. That seems good enough for me..

But yeah back home I'd be able to whip around the rotary merging with no regard from the right entry lane right into traffic while a line of cars would hang out in the left entry lane stopped waiting for a break in two other lanes of traffic. I'd hit that shit on the run like a well-timed fooseball edge blitz then merge over and in. Pretty slick willy if you ask me.
Actually I just lied to you as I should have said “the rotary.” It's not actually a rotary as there's a YIELD sign on exit of turn three. So you're not able to make it around the innermost lane continuously with the right of way, which I'm pretty sure is a pretty big portion of the definition of “rotary.” And yes, I did just pull out some NASCAR-speak when referencing the exit of turn three in Auburn's “rotary.” This is my “rotary” perspective, entering “the rotary” heading towards downtown and Lewiston. Those coming from downtown and Lewiston may be biased to call the turn I referenced turn four based on where they began their trip. They, however, would be wrong, because I'm fairly certain I'm the first person out there to break down Auburn's “rotary” using auto-racing turn numbers. So I've got that going for me, which is nice.
But back to daily transporting...As Mr. Kurt Cobain said back some time the early 90's: In the sun I feel as one.


I've always liked being out at night once stoplights lose their timers and sensors and green lights and switch to blinking red and blinking yellow lights. I've always liked how they alternate blinking: When one light is red or yellow the other light is out, then it switches, then it switches again, then it switches again, then it switches again, then it switches again, then it switches again, then it switches again, then it switches again, then it switches again, then it switches again, then it switches again, then it switches again, then it switches again, then it switches again, then it switches again, then it switches again, then it switches again, then it switches again, then it switches again, then it switches again, then it switches again, then it switches again, then it switches again, etc.

Sometime very early in the generic scene described above I pass through the intersection but I always like it when I'm driving and I can see the glow of yellow, then red, then yellow then red, th-(I kid.  I'm not going to do that again..) in my rearview mirrors as I continue down the road.  The longer and straighter and quieter the road, the better.  I don't know why this is. It's one of the few things I'd like about night driving. That and back in high school after fooseball games when I'd turn my lights out and drive Perkins Ridge and Young's Corner Rd. by starlight and moonlight in the “Little Red Wagon” that was my Wrangler. Unsafe? Maybe. But the view was always well worth it, no matter the night. Cheers.

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