All About Trey

Life, Travel, Adventure

Filtering by Tag: work

I Hate People

I do.


Just in general terms, I hate people.

To be more specific, I guess hate people who are useless, annoying, obstacles to progress, irrational, and ignorant (wither intentionally or not).

Today, my hate goes to Mr. No.

"Well I don't want to tell anyone how to suck eggs." My what a lovely phrase.

Let me translate that for you:

"Well, I don't want to tell you how to suck eggs." See that sounds so much better, right?

But let's try one more translation:

"Sure, I'm the technical expert on this process but I'm not really going to give you any real information that would actually be helpful because then I might actually have to do my job."

Well, that's a loose translation, but I think you can figure it out.

Do you see why I hate people?

Pet Peeves, Boston, and Obama

So in general I don't mind going off to conferences. It's kind of a necessary evil in the DoD & IT world. But for the love of God, if you're going to put 100+ IT professionals in a room, can you please allow laptops and/or some sort of wireless access? Coming back to the hotel room (which is fab BTW) and downloading 200+ emails and trying to deal with all of the sh!t that happened in the office while I'm gone is just depressing. And using my crackberry during the meeting won't solve the problem, but it will help me triage the situation and figure how long I'll be working at night.

Boston. I'm so close to Ptown, and yet so far. Lawyer X has some stupid "ethics" training on Saturday, so my dream of skipping off to Ptown for a little fun weekend was dashed. In theory I could go to Ptown without him. In theory. But this is one of those things about being in a relationship. You just don't do that. Sadly, this will the first time in 8 years that I haven't been to Ptown in the summer. But I really can't complain. We've got the sailing trip in August. The cruise to Egypt, Greece, and then the Amalfi Coast. Kylie in Vegas. And then the food and wine festival in Disney World. On second thought, I can't afford to go to Ptown anyways with all of the trips we've got planned!

So I'm staying at one of the new trendy Aloft hotels in the Starwood chain. And I must say it is fabulous. It's like a Virgin America Hotel. Very hip, trendy. Cool little bar. Some soft techo playing in the elevator. The room is great. Huge shower stall. Ginornmous flat screen mounted to the wall opposite the king size bed. Just very, very, nice. And it's like a mile from the conference I'm at this week.

"I don't agree with the characterization of gay relationships in the DOMA brief submitted by the DOJ and I regret that my administration used such language." That's all Obama had to say. He gave a 20 minute speech to member of the GLBT community on the anniversary of Stonewall and if he had said those 26 words, I would have probably still been a bit upset, but would still support him. But he didn't say that. And he hasn't said that. And Robert Gibbs continues to say that Obama stands by the brief. And then you've got Gates talking about a more "humane" implementation of DADT and Mullen says he's advised the president "to move in a measured way" on overturning DADT. So there's a lot of talk. Bad talk. And no action. So while I really want to support Obama, he needs to support me as well. It's called loyalty up and down the chain of command. And yes I know he's got his hands full with the multiple disasters left over from the previous regime. But it really doesn't take much to issue a stop loss order or for him to not file a brief supporting DOMA, while Congress gets their act together to repeal DADT and DOMA.

I still think that Obama's trying to do the right thing on Iraq, torture, the economy, etc. And I wish him the best of luck. Our country definitely needs help turning around and getting on the right track. But I'm not going to give a single penny to any Democratic candidate or organization until I've got equal rights as a citizen of this country.

Etiquette Lessons and the Ghost of Boyfriends Past

Now I'm not Emily Post, but I was raised right as my mom would say. So I know how to behave at formal dinners. Apparently that isn't as common as one would hope.

Last week for work, I ended up having to go to a formal lunch with some dignitaries from France at the Pentagon. The government lead took us up to the Commandant of the Marine Corps private dining room. Now we had a really swanky lunch when we were in Paris, so it was our turn to put on a nice meal. Sans wine of course.

Anyways, the French senior representative noticed that while it says USMC on the plates, it also says Department of the Navy. And one of the senior US guys was trying to explain how the USMC is part of the Department of the Navy. And then one guy goes, "The USMC is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Department of the Navy." Wow, what a great line. I must use that around my USMC friends sometime!

Anyways, the host (seriously senior guy) shows up and we sit down to eat. Now being a slimy contractor, and the youngest person at the table by far, I'm at one end of the table. Across from me is a Navy CDR. So we sit down, and I have a sip of water. Well the servers come out and bring out the soup. And they serve it kind of oddly as I get my soup before the guest of honor, or the host, does. So I sit there patiently. Well, my CDR friend across from me proceeds to dig in to the soup and starts eating. I'm trying to catch his eye to wave him off, but it's too late. Anyways, the soup is finally served to everyone and we start to eat. Sort of a corn chowder with some sausage in it. Very good. Well I'm half way through my soup when the CDR decides that he's done and puts the soup aside and moves his salad on top of his plate and starts to eat the salad. While everyone is still eating soup! Anyways, when the soup is done, the servers take the soup away and then the host pulls the salad to the center of the place setting to start to eat it. Now mind you, since the CDR already ate his salad, the server took away his salad plate and his soup bowl, so he's just sitting there and not really participating in the conversation. Just odd. We have the main course, spinach and feta stuffed chicken. And it was good. Well they bring out the dessert and of course my CDR friend is served first and what does he do? He grabs his spoon and starts to dig in before everyone has their desserts. I'm like, wow, you need to get out more.

That night we flew down to Key West (hey, don't be a hater!) with the French. We worked on Friday and of course at lunch on Friday (a more casual affair) we see then storm clouds building. We go back to our meetings and when we leave for the day, the temp has dropped atleast 30 degrees. Yep, my only free day and it was cold in Key West. I just can't win sometimes.

Leaving the hotel on Sunday, I've got a late check out. I pack all of my bags and head down to the lobby. As I enter the lobby, I see a familiar face. And my first thought is no, it can't be. But I round the corner and it is. It's Norton (obviously not his real name). What are the odds that my former boyfriend (-ish) is staying at the same hotel as me in Key West? We say hello and exchange greetings. It's all very civil. And that's not to imply it was every ugly. After 5 or so months, I asked what we were doing and he said that he wasn't ready for a boyfriend. And I was okay with that, I said I still wanted to be friends. And then I never heard from him again. Which to be honest I thought was a little disappointing. I thought he was better than that. Oh well.

The good news? He didn't really look that great and I on the other hand have dropped 20 pounds and look fabulous! And that's all that really matters, right?

Around the World in Three Days

Okay, halfway around the world.

Monday: Paris, France.
Tuesday: Washington, DC.
Wednesday: San Diego, CA.

I am so jet lagged I'm not even sure what my name is.

Paris was great as always. Good to see my sister and her family. Spend time with my niece and nephew, even if they don't appreciate it.

"I don't want to visit Uncle Trey, he's EVIL!!!!"

Yeah, do you feel the love? But that's just him. And I love him regardless. I will say that I did score this time with the Pokemon DS game. So I've got that going for me.

On Saturday we went shopping at Decathalon, a sporting good chain in France, and finally saw some hotties. French guys are all stick thin little twinks. But in Decathalon I finally saw a hot muscular DILF with huge biceps. And you know how I am about big biceps. Unfortunately as I was leaving, I saw him sucking on a cancer stick. Sigh.

On Sunday we went to Givernchy, which is where the impressionist painters would go when they left Paris to go into the countryside to paint. We actually went to Monet's house and garden. It was really amazing. After seeing so many Monet paintings, we were actually walking through the gardens, and along the water lilly pond, that he painted and made famous. So very, very cool. After that, we went to an abandon chateau (which was more like a castle) on top of a hill over looking a small village in a valley. The weather was amazing and the kiddos had a good time rumpusing across the castle and the hill.

Flew back on Monday. Worked in DC on Tuesday. And then caught a flight before the crack of dawn on Wednesday to make it out to San Diego. Here till Saturday.

I made it to 830PM last night (1130PM DC time; 0530AM Paris time) and then I woke up at midnight (0300AM DC time, 0900 AM Paris time). Today's going to be a long, long, long day.

There and Back Again.

I'm back. Sort of.

Sort of dropped off the radar for a bit. Work is work. Sucking my will to live.

And the whole Palin thing. Really? REALLY? Sigh.

Went to France for work. Not quite a boondoggle. Got to visit my sister and her family.

Going to France again. Don't ask. Long story.

Then San Diego for work.

So I'm quite the traveler.

Or an airline mileage slut.

You're call.

Cell Free, Paris, and Assimilation

My great IT guys at work got me a new cell phone.

And activated it.

When I wasn't in the office.

Killing my existing phone.

So I'm cell phone free.

Till I pick up the new one tomorrow.

How do people live like this?

What do I do now?

Oh, so totally loving the Paris Hilton ad. Just too funny. But one of the even funnier things I read about it was, "Look, yes it was scripted, yes she's just speaking the words and probably doesn't understand it really. But McCain's ads are scripted. He's just speaking the words. And he probably doesn't understand it either. But atleast she *sounds* like she does. Oddly enough this whole little episode makes me like her just a little bit.

Well I'm slowly becoming like one of the hordes of business men (and women) who I see every day when I commute to work. I've ditched my very nice looking, but not comfortable dress shoes for these faux leather sneakers that look like loafers. They are passable I guess. And I'm plugged in to my iPod so I can ignore the homeless and the crazies. And I finally broke down and bought a roller bag for work. Look, I like the backpack. It's a young look, that says, "Sure I'm hauling my laptop home every night so I can do even more work, but secretly I'm kind of cool." But it's killing me. Add the backpack to the heat and humidity of August and it's not a good combination. I'm DRENCHED by the time I get to the metro. It's just ugly. So I got a small little roller bag. Yes, I know, another obstacle for my fellow commuters. Sorry. Deal with it.

Oh, and is "I'll see you at the debate, bitches!" really that popular?

Hawaii, DC, NYC, and Ptown

It's been a busy week for me.

The flight back to DC from Hawaii was okay. I upgrade to business class which made it bearable. Nothing like a 2 hour storm delay in Chicago to make your day. I left Hawaii @ 8PM on Friday and got back to my place @ 8PM on Saturday. Good times.

Sunday AM and I metro-ed to Union Station and caught one of the regional trains to NYC. Museum Man met me there and the first thing I did was find some cold medicine. I had started to get a runny nose and I could feel a sore throat coming. Again good times. NYC was fun. I rode the subway for the first time. It's pretty easy I guess. Dodging the rain (or attempting to atleast) we went down to the Pride Parade which was just insane. Even with the miserable weather it was just fabulous. So many people out, everyone having a good time. It was great. After the parade, we started making our way over to the piers, stopping by the Dugout for a quick beer. The Dugout is a bear bar I've heard about from Joe.My.God. It was packed. And in a bad way. We had one drink and the motored on. After walking through a very strange and loud crowd of young blatino lesbians and their admirers, we actually ran into Joe, also heading for the Pier Dance. The Pier Dance did rock! Lots of great music and lots of hot, hot, hot men. Oh, I saw my porn star "friend" again. Again, which is no surprise really. I think every A list gay in NYC was at the Pier Dance. The surprise guest was Jennifer Hudson and needless to say the gays were shrieking like little girls. She sang three songs including "I'm No Going" which really rocked the pier. We stayed for the fireworks which were pretty cool and then trekked into mid-town to find a late night bite to eat. After a taxi detour, we made our way to the Saint-At-Large party at it's *new* location! Apparently on Friday the cops had raided the original location and shut it down, so the producers of the even jumped through hoops to find a new space. And they did. A fabulous space that I thought they decorated pretty well. At 1230AM when we got there it was just getting started. Well after dancing on concrete for 5 hours, I needed a little rest, so we sat and listened to the music and watched the hot men for awhile. We did hear one good song, surprisingly by Mariah Carey. But then we left around 2AM when I decided that I did need a little sleep. And a little sleep is what I got as I woke up at 445AM to take the subway back to Penn Station to catch the 0605AM train back to DC.

So in addition to just being tired, I'm also sick as a dog at this point. I've got a full on cold, aches, pains, you name it. So my work week has been kind of crappy. I feel a bit better, but still . . .

Well I'm off to Ptown for my annual pilgrimage.

Here's the Mariah Carey song. Sort of mellow in a good trancy/loungey kind of way:

It's Not My Time

So busy day today.

Too many meetings. As usual.

Not enough time to do real work. As Usual.

Always busy. Always on the move. As usual.

I bailed out of one meeting at noon so I could get some work done, grab lunch, and then be ready for my meeting at 1PM. As I was walking briskly up Wilson to go to Chop't for lunch, I look around at the people. People who are in my way. Look, I'm sorry but I don't have time to stroll down the street, or sit and talk over lunch. Kind of busy here, get out of the way. BTW, I *love* Chop't. The salad portions are kind of huge, that's the only complaint. Anyways, I ate lunch during my 1PM meeting of course.

So I'm going to Hawaii on Sunday. Yea me. But not really. The last trip to San Diego really wasn't that fun. I work all day, eat dinner and maybe go to the gym, and then I'm back in front of the laptop trying to keep up with everything that's going on back here in DC. And I got stuck in a middle seat on one of the long legs so it really was just not a good time and I wasn't thinking about getting on a plane again until July for Ptown (and really, the Boston shuttle is like an hour, so no big deal). And the thought of getting on a plane for 12 plus hours just really sucks my will to live. Plus I can only imagine how messed up I'm going to be from a time perspective.

Anyways . . . . so I'm watching VH1 on Sunday during that 2 hour block they play videos and they play the new song by 3 Doors Down "It's Not My Time". Which is some sort of rebellious song about how they aren't ready to die. Which is all well and good, but of course in my twisted mind I'm thinking, "When is it *my* time?" My time to be happy, to be living life, to be in love, and feel like I'm not just treading water?

So yes, I'm in one of THOSE moods these days. Gee, could it be work grinding me down, consuming all of my waking hours, stressed out and unable to find a way out of my downward spiral? BINGO!

At this point, I think I get one day in Hawaii to myself. Maybe I can chill a bit then.

Oh, so I started looking at all of these Brokeback Mountain mash ups on Youtube tonight. I think I like this one the best:

DC to San Diego and then back again

Yep, it's been a fun week or so. I really need to get better at updating the blog more frequently.

Let's see . . . . last Monday I had a super big meeting at the puzzle palace. Of course that's the day that Metro chokes big time. And did I mention it's swealtering. So I hop a cab to make my meeting. Afterwards, trying to get back to Rosslyn is a haze. The Metro guys is saying take a train to L'Enfant Plaza, change trains to Foggy Bottom, and then take a bus to Rosslyn. Um, no! Luckily I found a DoD bus that runs to Rosslyn, but still my commute home SUCKED beyond belief.

So for the past week, I've been off both of my diets. In San Diego I pretty much had to drive. But it was a rental, not my car, so I think I get some points. But i definitely don't get points for my food diet. Conferences just kill diets. Especially atkins because it's so carb heavy. Ugh. I dread getting on the scale tomorrow.

San Diego was fine. I guess there's a little golf game going on call the Open? Yikes, the hotel was just overrun with those people. No one famous, or alteast that I would know. But still. And while I do enjoy traveling for work, it's not really all that much fun anymore. I sit in a conference all day, and then I go back to the hotel, maybe hit the gym (and that's a maybe), eat dinner, and then do work till I go to sleep to try to catch up with everything going on back in DC.

The flight back from San Diego was great too. So it’s getting bumpy as we descend into DC. Coming in from the north, we pass over Rosslyn and I look down to see my building and our sign. I see the building, but I can’t read the sign. Uh oh. We’re too high. So either we’re going to drop like a stone to make the flight path, or we’re going to bail out. Sure enough, like a second later, the engines rev up and we’re banking hard out of the flight plan. Ugh. Not a good ride home.

I did get home in time to see the Pride Parade. As I was walking to a friend for dinner, I cut up 17th St to see how the festivities were coming. For big events like Pride, JR's will close off their dead end portion of Church St and make it a beer garden. It was already going strong, but as I approach, I see some gentlement at the corner yelling to anyone who will listen about the great evil that has befallen this city. Sigh. People like that make being a gay Christian hard. Can you please stop using the bible as a weapon? I don't think Jesus meant for you to use that way. But later during the rainy parade I saw something much better. Standing next to my group on New Hampshire was a family of Muslims who had come to watch the parade. The little boys (I'm guessing 10 and 6) were just too cute, the men were in jeans, while the women were wrapped head to toe in very colorful wraps. But they were all having a great time watching the parade and enjoying themselves despite the rain. So that was kind of nice to see.

I worked the church booth at the Pride Festival today which was fun. Then walked around with GreekBoi and MuseumMan. It's always good people watching at Pride. No judgement, but if you haven't been out of the house since last summer, or at the gym since 1999, you might want to re-think the harness and butless chaps. It was brutally hot and sunny and you're only going to get burned. And with SO much skin exposed, you're going to hate yourself later. On the other hand, the boi's from Nuwear were walking around almost naked and it was a very good thing. I swear, I start my diet tomorrow!

Lesbionic Operas and A Magical Kingdom (ish)

So a couple of weeks ago I went to see Tamerlano at the Kennedy Center. We had seats in the Presidents Box (yes, I *know* people!). Absolutely amazing seats. Plus a little lounge where we quaffed some champs and nibbled on presidential chocolates. And having your own bathroom is essential. Only the little people use the public restroom. Hello Joke!

Anyways, an old Navy friend of mine who works in the White House got the tickets. And Placido Domingo was performing. And he's just amazing. The problem is that the opera was just a little bit weird. So Placido played the old vanquished king. Check. But then the Prince who conquered him and is in love with his daughter is played by a woman. And then the Emperor who controls the Prince is in love with the daughter also, and he's like a super high tenor. So really girly sounding. So the Prince is really a Princess. The Emperor sounds like an Empress. And they are vying for the daughter. So it had a very lesbionic feel to it. But it was an amazing performance and just so much fun.

After that, I skipped down to Orlando to visit the Magic Kingdom. Eh. It was okay. The resort we were at is for conferences so it wasn't really *that* nice. More like a mediocre Holiday Inn. I did go down early to check out Epcot which was good. But I'm really not the target demographic they are going for. It seems like there are three things to do at Disney. Eat, shop, go on the rides. And most of the rides are for the little people. Which were everywhere. Hello people, shouldn't your children be in school! Now I know I've gained some weight (my diet starts after France!), but there were a LOT of people there who were just obese. Yes I know it's a problem throughout America, but it was just so obvious when I was down there. Now, after my bitching, I will say that I didn't see a single freakish tatoo or earing on the employees (aka cast members) or hear a single curse word. Which was refreshingly nice. The conference was just okay. I know a lot of people who come to Disney World every year, but I'm not feeling it right now. Maybe if I went down with someone, and sans conference it would be better.

So, off to Paris tomorrow to visit my sister and the kinder. I'm smuggling a Nintendo DS for my niece and a strange M&M dispenser for my sister. Plus I got my niece and nephew a new DS game for them to play. So I'll be the good Uncle, atleast for the first day!

No-f%ck x 2

So No-f&ck is my nickname for Norfolk. I've had to go down there several times over the years and I just never like it. Hence the not so nice nickname. And I had to go down there twice this week. Well technically it wasn't Norfolk, it was Suffolk and VA Beach. But still, it's the No-F&ck area. And both trips were day trips. The Suffolk trip was just over 3 hours, ONE WAY. The VA Beach trip was around 4 hours, ONE way. So yes I've had some quality car time this week.

On Monday when I went down to Suffolk, mapquest sent me a different way than usual, and I figured, sure why not. I ended up on a two lane state highway that was actually not bad. The speed changed several times on the road so that helped me stay awake, and we are talking RURAL SOUTHERN VIRGINIA. Kind of sad and scary.

But I did find my new favorite town. Though "town" might be a stretch. Maybe a village. Or a small collection of buildings? It was called Disputanta. For some reason, I just love that name. It sounds kind of snobby, "Oh, I'm from Disputanta Virginia." Okay, I'm weird, but I do love it.

So I've been battling a bit of a funk lately. Not really happy on a number of different fronts. And my vacation didn't really rejuvenate me at all. I'm starting to have dreams where I just say "F&ck it!" and walk away. But with the economy in a nose dive, now's not the time to do anything foolish. I'll do the responsible thing, like I always do, and just suck it up. This funky mood will pass. Maybe I'm worried about the doppelganger coming to visit. He arrives on the 4th. Don't know.

Losing It

I'm losing it. Seriously.

So I was supposed to attend this Homeland Security conference on Tuesday and Wednesday at the Ronald Reagan International Trade Building. So Tuesday AM I get up, I put my suit on, grab some business cards, and head out. I walk to the metro, ride the metro to Federal Triangle, and I go through the medal detectors and then I go to look for the conference. And I can't find it. Oh, I see signs for other conferences and meetings, but not mine. So I finally call one of my guys at the office and ask him to see what room it's supposed to be in. Well, the meeting is actually Wednesday & Thursday, not Tuesday and Wednesday! So I'm totally messed up. So then I get back on the metro, walk back to my condo, change into regular office attire, and then drive to work feeling oh so stupid.

But wait, it gets better!

Wednesday AM I get up, put my suit on (which I HATE!), walk in the BITTER cold down to the Metro, go to the Reagan building. The conference is there! I go to register and they can't find my name. And now I'm annoyed. Because I know I've registered! I've gotten like three emails from them and they've got my position and company name messed up. So I pay $12 for wifi access to pull up my email. But I can't find the registration. So I'm getting mad. So I find the email I sent to the loser from the conference about my position and company name messed up. Uh-oh. Apparently there are two conferences in DC regarding Homeland Security this week. The one I registered for WAS Tuesday & Wednesday, but at the Washington Convention Center. There's a different one on Wed & Thursday at the Regan building. F*&K! So I leave the Reagan building, hop on the Metro and finally make it to the one I really signed up for. And it sucks. The two people I wanted to hear and chat with briefed yesterday. And there's no one good/interesting today. I did make one business contact that might be useful, but we'll see. Anyways, I was just mad about the whole thing. And I kept thinking, I'm just losing it. That vacation can't come soon enough!

Wrong Convention

Back in San Diego. After a rainy Superbowl Sunday (Yeah Giants!), the weather has cleared up. And the new Hard Rock Hotel rocks hard! It's really sweet! And just steps away from the convention center.

Monday AM while on a telecon, I'm looking out my window and I see a bunch of fireman walking around. Yep, in the other half of the huge San Diego convention center, there is a fireman/EMT convention. And let me tell you. The men are HOT!!

Yep, I'm in the convention filled with old, mainly overweight, white men, and next door there is some serious hotness. Life is just not fair.

Oh, here's a gratuitous hot fireman pic! Hey, I can dream can't I?

Trey's Traveling Travails

So much fun being on the road. Not!

San Diego was okay. A bit cool, but some wonderful sunny days. Of course, for most of them I was trapped inside my meetings. Which went well, but just seem to reinforce that there is too much to do, too little time, and definitely not enough funding to do it all. And of course, while I'm trapped in these meetings, the pile of emails keeps growing. So after being in meetings all day, and then the obligatory group dinner, it's back to the room to try to keep up with all of my real work. On the good side, the hotel was nice, very nice. l

TV Tales: I will say that the hotel obviously have some sort of ESPN obsession. It had not one, not two, not three, but FOUR different ESPN channels. Someone stop the madness. And the other thing that I thought was interesting was all of the commercials for Prop XX or YY. The ones about the Indian gambling I thought was particularly interesting. And then a couple of times I caught this strange ad about how bail bonds are good for America. It was really surreal. I need to get out more.

CO: The trip to Colorado went okay, Considering that United lost my luggage. Oh well. And it's frakken cold here. But we stayed inside most of the time. Mainly me trying to get my Mom's PC working properly. I didn't realize that her machine is 5 years old. And slower than molasses. I could watch my fingernails grow as I waited for hotmail to load. Really sad. The rentals are good. All things considered. And I'm glad I got a chance to visit them.

On my way back to San Diego. I'd like to watch the Superbowl, but I have just a ton of work to do. We'll see. Maybe the bar at the hotel will have wireless. That would be sweet.

Walk Away

So I had a bad day at work today. Really bad. Went to a meeting and afterwards I got into a "discussion" with these guys from another company that I'm supposed to work with. And they were completely unreasonable and then, then accused me of not wanting to work together. Umm, I want to work with them as a team, but that doesn't mean they get to make unilateral decisions. That's not what a team is. And suddenly I realized that they were never going to listen to me or admit that I have a valid point of view. And I started to get mad. And that's when I just turned and walked away. In almost mid sentence. There was no point in continuing the discussion, and I didn't want to lose my temper. So I just left.

And while I detest acting that way and hate burning bridges, I just think that's the way it's got to be. It's going to make working with them difficult and I plan to continue to call them on their sh&t!

And it looks like Obama's going to win Iowa!!! YEAH! And he's kicking HRC's ass!

Found While Blog Surfing #2

From the Farmboyz via Joe.My.God (natch!):

"Holding On.

The way I see it, we are, each of us, dumped from the Titanic of our births into icy waters. We survive instinctively by clinging to what is nearby, some luckier than others by circumstance, some by strength, and still others by cold-blooded gumption. I am among those who, while awaiting rescue, trade up to better debris.

In childhood, I was supported by careless teachers, unhappy parents, and the lonely respite of the public library. As a young adult, I enjoyed the comfortable floatation of the Church, pulling at my oar half-heartedly while snickering quietly at the drama of my voice. When the dark and starless skies let me know that I was making circles, I took a dive into the passing ship of State, making myself useful dispensing the sterilities of mapless government.

In my early days of safety, I saw many people drown, and secretly I wished to know the foam of the waves that overcame them.
I watch others tread water for the length of their lives, using curious tools to stay above its surface. The morphine of religion. The aquarium of wealth. The fanning gills of sex. The antifreeze of drink. Their sharks never seemed much to care for me, though I would have been easy prey.

Imagine my surprise twenty-four years ago when someone passing took hold of me and pulled himself up and into the listing vessel of my life. Turned about in winter, I felt warmth for the first time. Good and playful work. An ease of course through dire straits. Laughter in the clearing of the drain.

To him I make these words. Happy anniversary, you with your charts and signs and sense of direction. Do not argue with me when I set love between the stem and stern of us and say now we will go this way or that. Hold fast, and sing with me when there is music in the wind. I feel good currents beneath us. Portage to those sunny islands. Soon."

Wow. What a great post. The part that speaks to me is the part about treading water for the length of their lives. I've been lucky. No drugs, alcohol, or sex have disturbed my progress through life, though I know a lot of people who have been diverted, sidetracked, hamstrung by these demons. I am truly lucky. But I wonder if work has become the shark that has taken a hold of me and won't let go. If I use work to put enough blood in the water to draw the shark, to make me just weak enough not to be able to escape. If it's a comfortable hell I've created, and am afraid to escape from? Don't know. And don't have time to think about it. I need to get back to work. ;-)

I Don't Want To Be . . . .

I may not know what I want to be when I grow up, but I can tell you who I don't want to be . . .

1) I was at a conference this AM and I was probably one of the youngest men in the room. The DoD contracting world is full old white men. And I don't want to be that. I don't want to be doing this in 20 years. I want to work hard, and then I want to semi-retire when I'm like 50 and then go do something I will enjoy that may not pay well, but maybe will make a difference. Like go the non-profit route. If I'm still doing this crap when I'm 60, please shoot me.

2) So I've got a new person I work with in the government who is ALWAYS in a bad mood. This person starts off in the pissed position, and then it goes down hill from there. Never a smile. Never a friendly comment. Always a curt word or a snap, when there's not table banging to make their point. And if something doesn't go as planned, then more frustration displayed loudly to all around. I can't imagine being like that. Isn't it tiring to be THAT angry, ALL the time? I'm surprised they don't have ulcers by now. If you are THAT unhappy, ALL the time, then go do something else!

Ugh. Long day and Mom arrives tomorrow. I need to go de-gay the condo. I'm not totally de-gaying it, just moving the porn, etc. I'll keep the "Sorry Girls I'm Gay" poster on the fridge. She can deal.

Metro or Sauna?

So I had to take my car into the shop. I'm hearing this weird noise and I don't want to put off getting it looked at. I'm gone next week, and then when I get back Mom arrives on that Wednesday in preparation for the surgery. And I don't want to have her driving my car if there's a problem. So anyways, I take the car to the shop and then I catch the metro from East Falls Church into Rosslyn.

Okay, I'm not normally a metro person. I usually drive because I have to go to meetings at random times to places that are not metro accessible. And taking a cab is not an option. So I'm not used to the swarms of people trying to pile into the metro car at 7AM. It's kind of odd. And kind of bad since there is no AC. After about 20 minutes, it became clear who thought deodorant and cologne was option. Yes, what a wonderful melange of smells to enjoy. But I make it to Rosslyn without hurling.

Meeting at the puzzle palace this afternoon. Walk from my office to the Metro, starting to feel the sweat build up. Get into the metro, again, no AC. Not as crowded, but still hot. I was definitely sweating up a storm by the time I found refuge in the AC of the puzzle palace. The ride back was just as enjoyable.

When I get back to my office, I find out that the shop doesn't hear the noises I'm hearing. And no, these aren't voices in my head. I had other people in my car and they were asking WTF. So they want to keep my car overnight. Not sure why, but the thought of a long metro ride back out to East Falls Church does not appeal to me.

So I walk back up the hill to the metro to go home. Again, the metro has no AC. Plus now it stops randomly in the middle of the tubes. Not once, but several time. I'm wearing my laptop backpack and I can feel it start to melt into my back. I finally escape the metro and then walk the 7 blocks home.

When I get home, I have to peel my dress shirt off my body. Just totally disgusting. And I get to look forward to using it again tomorrow. I'm not sure I could do this every day. I think I'd have to wear shorts or something and bring a change of clothes with me.

Detox Day 4

So I'm on day 4 of my little detox regime. The first couple of days weren't bad. But last night I was jonesing for a glass of Crystal Light Raspberry Ice Tea. Really badly. But I persisted and added some lime and lemon to my water. Yep, I'm living now!

So I checked out the new cafe on 17th St last night. Hmm, maybe it was just their first weekend, but the service was kind of slow. And while the Southwester Chipotle Salad with Chicken sounded amazing, it was actually a little disappointing. I just expected more. More salad. And more chicken. Of course, I was starving, so maybe that's why I was disappointed.

I didn't go out last night, or Friday night. Just feeling really tired. I wonder if that's because I'm purging caffeine from my body. I don't know, but I feel worn out right now and I hope I can sleep on the plane to San Diego.

Now, I wore shorts to church today so I really have no moral high ground to speak of. But there was one guy there in a sleevelss shirt. WTF? Ugh, and after the service he put that weird cowboy hat thing on that was so trendy a couple of years ago. I guess I'm old school, but I don't think you put the hat on until after you leave church. And there was some twink who was there who was wearing a very weird bandana as like a sweat band on his head. It was a grey hanky if that means anything. I can only hope that he was coming back from some all night clubbing thing and thought about going to church while the drugs were still kicking. Because if he woke up and thought this was appropriate church attire, he was sadly mistaken. I guess I'm just a little bit conservative that way.

Anyways, off to San Diego for work. The weather report?


So I got into a really bad funk yesterday. Well, really it's been building for a couple of days. Work is stressing me out big time. First of all, why do people insist on trying to cram five days worth of work into a four day week? What's the point of a holiday if you're going to kill yourself when you come back. And I've got so much work to do that I don't know where to start. And that semi-paralysis means the work is piling up more and that only stresses me out more.

Then I had to go into the hospital for a FNA and was feeling kind of sorry for myself. It's probably nothing, but it felt weird and just didn't contribute to my great mood yesterday.

So I bail from work early (which sadly means I put in only 8 hours) and go home to just lay down. Which doesn't help. So I try to eat my way through my emotions. I say try because apparently the "Everything but Mushrooms" pizza I ordered from Stoney's included anchovies. Egads! Well, the pizza was ruined. Even after I had picked off the evil little fishes, it was still inedible. I had one piece and thought I was going to hurl. I did managed to suck down some cookies from Whole Foods, so I had that whole bloating thing going for me.

I try to work some more, but I'm basically in shut down mode mentally. So I crank up my Tivo and watch some Stargate Atlantis. Which is some nice mind candy. In one of the episodes I watched, one of the characters needs to relax, to meditate, so he can "ascend" or else he dies. And he can't. He's your type A to the T and after laying down for a milli-second he bolts up and says, "I can't let go!" And wow, I'm so there. And I know it's not healthy at all.

Anyways, the funny thing is that this AM I woke up and I actually felt okay. Not stressed out, not wigging about the gazillion things I've got to do. Just sort of calm. Maybe I'm in a weird state of denial. Maybe I'm in the eye of the storm and it will pass and I'll be back in the maelstrom of my life. I'm not sure. But in the meantime, I'm just going to go with the flow and see how long it lasts.

Care to take any bets?