Saturday, January 22, 2011

Give me my money back, maaaaaaan..

I did my taxes yesterday. Well, my federal taxes. The ones that matter. I wasn't really sure how much I was going to get back this year, or if I was going to get any back at all for that matter so it became a good day when I got far enough into things to see I was going to get a little bit of coin back. Yay for me. It's exciting, you know, because it's my money I'm getting back.

I also discovered I did my taxes one day earlier last year than this year.  I always do my taxes fairly early.  It's pretty easy with turbotax.  And free.  If I actually had to buy turbotax I'd suck it up and do them by hand.  But it's free so I don't, and I get handy little .pdf's for record keeping.  YIPPEEEEEEEE.

Last year I did them early because I needed a little extra dough to line my pockets when I came out here. My tax return was, more or less, what got me started out here with first month's rent, security deposit, and incidentals like filling my belly with overpriced food and grog (I had other money, but why spend that right away.......). This was well back, when I was out here strictly to have a good time with no plan of staying for the long term (Long term being more than a couple of months..). Once the job started it took a couple more months for me to realize I was burning through money like you read about and that I needed to do a little bit of budgeting to allow myself to save a bit. Yes, I enjoy saving money. I'm a delayed gratification kind of a guy.

I'm not sure what I'm going to do with this savings account but it helps me sleep at night knowing I have it. Actually, recently until I actually completed my taxes this savings account didn't help me sleep; it kept me awake. A lot of my “budgets” get crafted while I'm unable to fall asleep at night. This results in me coming up with silly ideas and then rough figures to go along with the silly ideas and then these rough figures get plugged into the calculator in my phone so I can determine how things add up. Last night I had some concrete numbers so I didn't have to fudge numbers a few times to get a ballpark estimate. 

 Yes, I am, in fact, an anal retentive loser. But I enjoy knowing where my monies end up so I'll take the good with the bad. One in the hand is worth two in the bush and all that nonsense.  Don't tell me otherwise.


I've been trying to update my resume so I can be ready to send it out if a job that interests me catches my eye but I've hit a bit of a snag. I'm finding it quite difficult to explain what I actually do for work in ways besides “I clean up dirty tables for a living.” Some one give me some advice, please. 


More to come asap..



Monday, January 17, 2011

Winter doldrums..

Aloha. It's been quite some time. I don't even know how long. I know I've written once this month. I included quite a few words but I don't think I really said very much. That's kind of how I've been feeling lately. I've got quite a bit running running running through my head but there seems to be some broken connections between my brain and my fingers/mouth/whatever because I yet to be able to express how, exactly, I feel. Discombobulated. So, instead of writing I haven't been doing very much. I read Fight Club last week. Excellent read. I don't think that helped to clear my head as the entire storyline is about a pretty mixed up guy. I haven't had insomnia recently so I don't think I have to worry about developing a split personality just yet, which is a good thing. I recommend reading it if you're looking for a new read. It's much better than the movie, though I did enjoy the movie, too. Had I been better informed and more into reading ten years ago I would have liked to have read the book first, but that's neither here nor there now as the past cannot be changed. Down the road I'm sure I'll read more books by the author, Chuck Palahniuk, though right now I have many books in my possession I haven't yet read so I'd rather tackle those than buy more books. Eventually I'd like to read enough books I already have so I can send some back to my folks' place, but I've been saying that since I got here and it hasn't happened yet. I've traded some books when I've been back but I know there's absolutely no way all of the books I have now will fit into the bags I'll be carrying whenever I depart from here. But I'm confident things will shake out just fine whenever things actually have to shake out.


I think the new year has a way of messing with me in such a way that I get thrown into a bit of a funk. I've never really considered this before. When I was coaching the new year was daunting because it meant many, many consecutive six day work weeks as the new year brought the start of indoor meets which rolled immediately into outdoor meets. Last year I was fairly miserable around the new year because I didn't really have much of a plan for what was “next” in my life. I was living at home. It was cold and snowy. I wasn't working as the roofing season had come to a conclusion shortly after snowfall in the middle of December. Let's just say I had plenty of time to be miserable and not leave the house. I'm fairly certain this year's new year funk was a carry-over from not being home for the holidays, coupled with a little bit of an itch for a change. I'm quite happy here, but at the same time I'm getting that restless feeling and this time I'm feeling a desire to find a career path that could be for the long term. I have no idea what this could be, exactly, though I do have some potential avenues I've already discussed and others I plan to explore sometime in the not so distant future. This is by no means a rush to change, but I do feel a need to take a small step forward in the stages of change I learned so much about in my undergrad psychology classes.

This concerns the few of you still reading because I'd appreciate any input you may have for me. What, if anything, should I do next? Am I a fool for considering departing this beautiful island after barely a year? Do you know of a job that may interest me that you could help me obtain (Heh, heh..)? I'm all ears. This could be a very fleeting thought and by the end of this week I could be very well calling myself a fool for thinking this way, but at the same time I'm finding motivation right now so it certainly can't hurt to look around a bit. And, hell, I could have purchased one hundred and seventy thousand junior bacon cheeseburgers for the price of my undergraduate degree, so the least they can do is help me out in my job search, right?

Have a great start to your weeks, folks. My goal is to not lose all ambition by this afternoon. I'm out of salad so that should help things. Cheers.

Sunday, January 9, 2011


Oh, that was last week?  Some start to the new year writing wise, huh...............

I've locked myself in my room and now I'll write. I've got no internet access in here; I can only get a signal when I'm sitting at our table in the kitchen and I don't really enjoy sitting there. The chairs aren't that comfortable. Rigid, firm. Not squishy. I don't feel like the chairs contribute to detailed writing because the whole time I'm sitting there writing all I'm thinking about is getting out of the chair and getting to sit some place more comfortable. So, generally, I open up my computer, turn it on, enter my password (yes, I password protect my computer. Old college habit, though I don't know why I did it there, either. I don't possess any classified information.), connect to the internet and then open up a new window so I can open up Blogger and then a new post. Well, this isn't entirely true. Once I open a new window I always check my mail first. Always. Then I stay logged in and check my work schedule. Always. Then I log into the facebook. Always. Then I go to ESPN and check the headlines. Most of the time. THEN I open up Blogger and click on “New Post.” I am a creature of habit. It may seem annoying but I find comfort in repetition. I always use tabs, too. Never multiple windows. Multiple windows are so 1999. Whoever came up with the code that allows for multiple tabs in the same internet browser window deserves a pat on the back and a firm handshake. Preferably at about the same time. Handshake, then pat on the back. No, firm handshake, THEN the elbow grab while the shake is going on, for emphasis, you know. Then, post-shake, an appropriate pat on the back. Not a gentle and caressing pat. Not a pre-stage Heimlich-manuver pat. Just an appropriate pat. A “You deserve a pat on the back so I'm going to give you a pat on the back, and thus the regognition you so deserve” pat. Yeah, that sounds nice.


So, yeah. I've been struggling with motivation to write. Not ideas. There's always plenty of topics, however trivial they may seem or turn out to be. I mean, shit, I haven't even written about New Years yet. It wasn't that spectacular. Worked until about ten thirty. Met J.Mac and out 4th roommate, Curtis from Cape Cod, a little after that and drank beer on the side of the road while we attempted to hitch hike to a party. Shortly after midnight we succeeded in procuring a ride up the hill “(Well, two rides, but they were pretty close together so it counts as one ride, I think. Went to a pretty silly party that was going strong when we got in. Lot of house music. Kind of a weird scene. Curtis described it as a “weird, like silly, like gay ecstasy party.” Homophobic slurs aside, it was a pretty goofy scene where, presumably, quite a few people were rolling. It was a house party with 30 or 40 guests, a DJ complete with light show, smoke machine, and video, and no sign of the owner of the house anywhere to be found. And a guy dressed like the bunny from Donnie Darko and another guy that had on a light up t-shirt with LCD lights in the shape of the MTV logo, only his shirt actually said Mr. DJ or something stupid and he had on a teletubby head. Yeah, needless to say we didn't have the right drugs to really settle into that scene so we walked back down the hill after a little bit of time passed and caught a ride home. Happy New Year, indeed.

However, the house party, when the drugs and the DJ and everything expensive was removed, did kind of remind me a little bit of some of the parties that used to develop at Camp's house. There would be a whole gaggle from many walks of life who all ended up there because, well, sometimes there's only one party in town and that party usually formulated itself at Camp's house. With Nate Dogg on the CD player. Always Nate Dogg, always Music & Me, always played at least six times over the course of the night. “Ring the Alarm” will always put a smile on my face for this particular reason, and will always remain on my iPod just for that particular reason.  I'VE BEEN WAITING FOR THIS SONG ALL NIGHT!!!!!!!!!!!
 No one at the time really knew the words.  Some nights it was "Bring Me Along."  Other nights it was "Leave Me Alone."  Then again, maybe it was just the booze talking.  Ah, memories.


Speaking of iPod it's becoming more and more difficult to squeeze more music on there. Most nights I'll listen to my entire iTunes library on random, which is fairly extensive, and see where things end up. Once I find something I'm into for that particular evening I usually take it off random and just continue listening, but usually after this I remember how good something was and then want to hear more. Thus, it needs to find a way on my iPod. I've only got a 4gig nano (This last phrase sounded incredibly ridiculous to me as I wrote it because if someone told me ten years ago I'd be able to walk around with just about 1000 songs in my pocket I would have laughed in their face. But ten years later 1000 songs is tiny and I've become conditioned to MORE MORE MORE. They make players the size of fingernail clippers that hold 1000 songs. Nuttiness..) so while 1000 songs is quite a bit of music I enjoy having whole albums within an ear's reach, not just a song or two. Adding a song is easy, but finding an hour's worth of songs, or axing a whole album already on there causes me quite a bit of mental distress. I pride myself on keeping a diverse and polished iPod library and I enjoy EVERYTHING I keep on my iPod. There's a time and a place for everything so it's quite a challenge balancing my whims and interests of today with what I may be feeling tomorrow. And, really, everything that's been on my iPod for awhile started as a recently added, heavily debated item. Some albums are old, comfortable choices I've been listening to for years and will stay on because I enjoy sleeping to or running and/or riding to. Newbies need to find their niche. Yes, I do put this much thought into things. Today I wanted to add The Downward Spiral (I'm on a NIN kick, sue me..) so I removed ten (or so..) random country songs to start THEN subbed out my Beatles 1967-70 collection for Sgt. Peppers, Magical Mystery Tour, The Downward Spiral, and three random tracks (two Beatles, one NIN). I'm not sure how I feel about it yet, I really enjoy the 28 song Beatles two disc collection, but we'll see how it goes for the next couple days. And yes, this decision took me well over an hour to formulate. Good thing I have most the day off.


I suppose people could say I've been kind of selfish by taking some time for myself to start the new year. Until yesterday I didn't use my phone very much all week. Then yesterday not many folks were around when I attempted to return phone calls so I feel like I've been beaten at my own game of phone call screening and non-replied to texts. Karma is a motherfucker.  If you were someone I didn't respond to and then you didn't respond to me let me be first to apologize and say we're even.


That'll have to do for today. Welcome back, me. Cheers.