Archive for January, 2013

23
Jan
13

Stranger Things Have Happened (To You)

To the person who left their log in my front yard: Please come pick up your log. Thank you.

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10
Jan
13

Unloveable

How did The Master not get nominated for Best Picture?! C’mon!

It’s that time of year again! Time to review the Top 100 Albums of 2012 as decided by Radio 1190 and analyze my Overall Hipster Rating for the year. Why not use 1340AM’s Top 100 since they’re the hip new station in Denver? Well, the last four years results were based on 1190’s list, and since this is a strictly scientific study, I feel it is necessary to have a constant variable. Science.

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It looks like I managed to keep it steady this year with only 2% hipness.

#5. Ty Segall Band, Slaughterhouse

#59. Ty Segall, Twins

Well done. I was rather shocked though, I thought at least one of the three records White Fence put out in 2012 would make the list.

06
Jan
13

Oh Mary

Sometimes I throw away a perfectly good sandwich. Like just now, for example. I’ve been snacking all throughout my shift, so when it came time for the main course, I had no appetite. I feel really, really guilty about it and I’ll explain why.

In highschool, my mom would pack me a lunch. I admit it. One day, much like today, I never got around to eating the sandwich come lunchtime. No big deal. That night, I’m in my room digging my homework out of my backpack, and I stumble upon the sandwich. I still didn’t have the appetite for it and I didn’t want to throw it in my garbage can because it would just end up funking up my room. So i quickly weighed my options and out the window it went. That turkey sandwich sailed over the driveway and into the street with ease. I was confident in my decision and never gave the sandwich a second thought, until the next day. 

I get home from school and my mom is sitting at the kitchen table with a baffled look on her face.

“Why did I find your lunch in the street this morning? I went for a walk with Marylin and found a sandwich I made for you in the gutter!”

I was speechless. I had never felt such shame in my whole life, all over a sandwich. My mom threatened to stop making me lunches if I was just gonna throw them into the street. I begged forgiveness from my mom but I don’t think I’ve ever forgiven myself.

I just threw away a full sandwich and I feel shitty.

05
Jan
13

A Rented Room in Whalley Range

My friend Mark is a realtor and has been a really helpful person since I’ve known him. He was even responsible for hooking up my brother with his house and Carl too. Mark is someone I can always count on to have a level head and have his shit together. Its a shame we don’t hang out more often. I’ve known him since highschool and as much as I like him, I’ve always had a real dislike of the people he rolled with (except Nick Entzel and John Morgan).
So imagine the pickle I was put in when I asked Mark to recommend a contractor to redo our bathroom and he gave me the number to his old pal Brendan.
I have never been a fan of Brendan. We went to highschool together and as much of a tagalong and annoyance he was, I always kept it polite in his presence. What really bugged me was his role in the short-lived Aurora 303 Boards crew a few years ago. All these kids hanging out at the skateshop all day, not skating, dressing like Green Day while riding DGK boards. Repulsive in my opinion. Naturally, its my loyalty to The Denver Shop that repells me from 303 Boards, although Shardy and Diggler are still tight.
Anyways, I’m not a fan of the kid but I’ve been putting off this bathroom remodel since the summer. So yesterday, I’m in my house looking at my less than pristine bathroom, and finally decided to make the call to Brendan.
I realized that my personal grudge was over nothing but a bunch of silly stuff that I had embellished in my mind over the years. Besides, Brendan has got nothing against me and I’m sure he’d be glad to hear from me and help me out with my bathroom. Its time for me to stop being a dick over something stupid, suck it up, and take care of something I’ve been putting off for too long. Who knows, we’ll probably end up having a couple beers and a couple laughs. I’m just glad its too snowy outside for us to make a skate-date, I’m not ready for that kind of commitment.

Edit: Brendan is a fake name, but its something similar.

04
Jan
13

Any Girl In Love

I had a long and interesting career at pizza hut. Hired in 1999 at the age of 16, to  spring of 2012. Impressed? I worked at three different locations, worked under five General Managers and worked with, literally, hundreds of coworkers. It doesn’t take many qualifications to get hired at the hut so you could imagine i worked with a lot of strange and colorful people. I decided to compile a top 5 list of my favorite/most memorable coworkers.

5. Matt Crawford. Crawford was the second RGM I worked for and he was the one that recruited me to the Monaco/Yale store after my “poor performance” at Smokey Hill. It worked out great because if was a block from my new house and I got a .20¢ raise. Crawford was country boy from Kansas who moved to Denver to make it big. He was a dreamer. The guy had a million stories, loved WWF, smoked tons of schwag. I liked him because he was always talking, but, unlike most loudmouths, he wasn’t always talking about himself.  He genuinely expressed interest in other people. He respected me and valued my opinions both personally and professionally. He was later fired from the Highlands Ranch store for manipulating his inventory numbers and I never heard from him again.

4. Sean Coon. Sean Coon was a fucking maniac who didn’t give a fuck what anyone thought about him. I was always really impressed by his attitude and liked the “breath of fresh air” he brought to the Orchard store. He was “punk,” was in a punk band, dated a significantly older woman, and was not shy at all about talking about his penis piercing.
I had to pick him up one afternoon because his ride cancelled. He lived about a mile away in a junky little neighborhood off of Quincy. His backyard faced Quincy and I would often see him smoking as I drove by. We’re heading back to the restaurant and he tells me a story I’ll never forget. About a year prior, he was dating a girl who lived on the other side of Quincy. He invites her over one night to trip acid. He’s sitting in his room, looking out his window waiting for her to cross the street. Sean said he had dropped a couple tabs while he was waiting. Sure enough, the acid starts to kick in when he sees her. She takes one step onto Quincy and BAM! Gets nailed by a car. She died. Most people claim bullshit when I tell them that story but I saw the truth and hurt in Seans eyes that day. He once did a shot of garlic spray for 5 bucks.

3.  Charles Pang. Pang trained me on the maketable when I first started back in 99. We knew each other beforehand so I was comfortable that he would take good care of me. He taught me well and we had plenty of laughs. Charles was known to have the good weed for sale and he always had it, especially on payday. One night, my known highschool nemesis had shown up to make a purchase. Charles comes up to me on the maketable and says “hey, your enemy is out back and wants a quarter, should I sell it to him?”
“Hell no! Fuck that guy.” I replied. I always appreciated Charles turning down that deal for my own personal spite. Charles later became a delivery driver and once did Ludes/Loods(?) on his shift. Each time he returned from a run, someone would move his car. It was so funny because he never figured it out because he was all doped up on loods.

2. Denny. I forget his last name but he was one of the coolest guys I’d ever met. Denny was a driver at Parker and Orchard and I’m pretty sure he came with us to Smokey Hill. He was stocky and had a goatee, looked like a total prick but was the most humble and quiet spoken person. He had to quit because of medical problems. I didn’t think much of it because we cycled through drivers so much. He came by the store a couple weeks later and told Newman and I that he only had a couple months left to live. It was hard news to take and I sorta took the denial route to deal with it. His wife dropped a few months later and delivered the bad news.

1. Alex Borimsky/all Russian drivers
These guys were all nuts. They drove like maniacs, worked crazy long hours, and always bought me beer. Alex once brought me to the liquor store to pick out what I wanted. I was 18! “Its okay. You just help carry,” he said. The liquor store owner was eyeballing me as my sweat dripped all over the counter. It worked. I guess Alex had shopped there enough for me that the liquor store guy knew we weren’t the fuzz.
Sergo was a scary fucking guy who took no shit from nobody. He had a friend who would drop by occasionally and he was even scarier than Sergo. One night, Sergo and this gentleman expected me to get them some weed. I wasn’t a dealer, and when my one source came up dry, I literally thought they were gonna kill me. I ended up selling them my own stash and escaped with my life.
Alex and Alex K. were my closing drivers on Friday. It was great. They would deliver pizzas with lightning speed while Kenny and I got drunk in the store. One night Alex asks me to show him how to use the fax machine.
“You load the paper up here, face down, dial the number, and push the green button.”
“Thank you,” he said, “go away.”
I went back to the marketable and did my thing, curious as to what he was faxing. After a few minutes the fax machine had jammed, naturally, and I had to go unjam it. From what I saw, it appeared to be about 80 pages of rocket or airplane schematics. I cheerfully asked what they were and Alex looked me dead in the eye and said, “Documents. Go away.”
I always suspected that the Eastern Europeans that worked for us were secretly up to something, but those documents were the closest thing I ever got to hard evidence. They were sneaky and shifty, but they drove fast, did lots of dishes, and bought me alcohol. What more could an 18 year old ask for?

There are countless other memorable employees from my past life as a pizza hut cook and manager, but my hands are getting sore from typing on my phone. Here are some mentionable names: Zouhair, Joe, Lemons, Vitamin G and Curtis, Henry, Finley, Pshena, Octavio, the Frances brothers.
I could make a list of all the lousy pieces of shit I’ve worked with over the years but I don’t think there’s enough room on the internet for that list.

03
Jan
13

this time i got a reason

In 2006 I was coasting through art school, working nearly fulltime at pizza hut and living with Newman in a fourplex condo in south Denver. Our next door neighbor and us did not get along since the first day we had moved in. I remember her knocking on our door the second day we lived there, telling me that we’re too loud and unwelcome, and she “can be a real bitch.”
She was right.
One night while Newman was at work, I had arranged  a weed deal with a guy named Carl. I had to go print some images at kinkos then pick up the drugs. A typical Wednesday night. I returned home, tossed the bag of drugs on the coffee table and began cutting and mounting my images for tomorrows critique.
There was a knock at the door. It was around 9pm and I wasn’t expecting any company but I figured it was probably someone from work since I worked only a block away. It was my neighbor.
“Hi,” she said with a big smile. She then continued to explain how she had locked herself out of her condo and was hoping that her garage door was magically unlocked. (Our building shared a garage but her only access was through my house). I obliged and led her inside, then realizing that my house reeked of reefer, thanks Carl. I followed her downstairs to the garage and to her door. It was locked. I looked at her, expecting her to have a plan b. She didn’t. I then suggested that perhaps one of the many keys on my keychain would magically open her door. Surprise! It worked. She thanked me and I went back to my place to finish my schoolwork. Newman and I had a good laugh about it over a bowl that night.
About a week later, like déjà vu, there’s a knock on my door. Its my neighbor with a stupid grin on her face. She had locked herself out again! I chuckled politely and let her in, grabbed my keys and we headed back down to the garage. Strangely, my key didn’t work this time. I noticed the keyhole was shiny and new. She had changed her locks!
A strange feeling came over me. Learning that your neighbor distrusts you so much yet they still come to you to for help. What do I do for this “bitch” who has called the cops on me more than once for noise complaints, ratted to our landlord that we had a cat, and yelled at me daily for smoking on the patio?
She sheepishly offered a plan b. She suggested that since our units were connected, I could go up to the second floor, climb out the window, scale across the skylight, pop out the screen to her window, climb in and unlock her door from the inside. It was a legit plan, and I was dying to see the inside of her place. Just as I had suspected. Fucking filthy! It was like an episode of Hoarders. I quickly learned that she had a major infatuation with the Wizard of Oz, “antiques” (junk), and pictures of her grandchild. I observed an ancient PC with an animated aquarium screensaver. I wished I could have explored more but I had an obligation to get her front door unlocked and get out of the filth ASAP. She gave me an insincere thank you and that was that.
The next day, to my surprise, I found a plate of cookies and a thank you card in the garage in front of my door. “To a helpful neighbor” it read. Oh, imagine that. I took the plate of cookies upstairs and put them on the kitchen table and went to school. Newman and i never ate the cookies nor did we return the plate. What a bitch.