Saturday, January 31, 2009
Friday, January 30, 2009
Thursday, January 29, 2009
(Part One, Part Two, Part Three)
There was a knock on the door, and Samuel Bennett turned in his chair. He leaned forward to unlock the door, and his hired help, two thick men built for brawn instead of brain, entered the small security office. A row of monitors lit up the room, each one showing a different section of the storage lot. On one of the monitors was the image of Adam Marshall, both hands gripped tightly on the steering wheel of his classic Mustang.
“All done, boss,” one of the men said. “We dumped the body in the compactor like you said. Bastard bled all over me.” He held open the front of his jacket to expose his shirt, stained with dark blood.
“Well, Silas, people who have been shot in the heart tend to do that,” Bennett said. “And what of the gun, Peter?”
“I wiped it down good and clean, and chucked it into the river,” Peter said. He shifted, nervous, and shoved his hands deep into his pockets.
“Good job, both of you.” Samuel Bennett turned back to face the monitors. He typed a command on the keyboard in front of him, and the footage of Adam Marshal switched to a larger monitor. After studying the grim-faced witness to the murder of Danny Joiner for a few moments, he entered another command on the keyboard, and somewhere in the small office a printer came to life. It spat out three pages, bearing the grainy but strangely familiar face.
“This guy looks familiar, doesn’t he?” Bennett asked.
“I think I’ve seen him on TV before,” Silas said. “Some commercial or something.”
“He’s the guy on those commercials for that construction company across town,” Peter said. “You know, for Marshall Construction. The one with that stupid slogan, building your dreams from the ground up.”
Bennett nodded, finally recognizing the man. He entered another command on the keyboard, and the video footage of the murder and their witness disappeared. “Does one of you have my phone?”
“Right here, boss,” Peter said, reaching into his jacket pocket. He retrieved the phone and handed it to Bennett. He dialed a number, and held the phone up to his ear.
“Maine State Police, Troop B.”
“Officer Philips, please,” said Bennett.
“Jim, it’s Sam,” Bennett said, his voice quiet.
“Jesus, Sam! What are you doing calling me here? I thought I told you I couldn’t talk here at the desk.”
“This won’t take long, Jim, I promise. You’ve been on my payroll long enough to know that I only call when your services are needed.”
In the State Troopers office, Jim sighed and tapped his fingers on the desk. “What is it this time?”
“We had a little problem here tonight, and I need you to track someone down. I’ve got a name and a plate number. I’ll need you to bring him in.” Silas handed a scrap of paper to Bennett, with the plate number to the Mustang scribbled on it.
“Who’s the guy?”
To be continued...
Wednesday, January 28, 2009
The first job I had was working for a small family-owned Italian restaurant. They had a couple of restaurants throughout town, well known for their Italian sandwiches and pizza. I applied and interviewed in the same day, and was offered the job by the next afternoon. I wasn’t sure exactly what I was going to be doing, but I didn’t care. I had a job and my own income, and I was excited to start.
After a brief training, I worked behind the scenes. I made the pizza and spaghetti sauce, shredded the cheese for pizza, and stocked the coolers with soda and water. I emptied the trashcans and the returnable containers, cleaned the bathrooms, and changed the sign with the weekly advertisements. I scrubbed and cleaned the cast iron pizza pans, washed dishes, and mopped the floor. I did what I was told as best I could, and if it wasn’t for the people I worked with, I wouldn’t have hated the job so much.
I put up with their torment, and I eventually got used to it and ignored them. They focused their attention to the other new hires as they came in. After I had been there for three months, I began to spend more time up front preparing sandwiches and making pasta. I got to know the people I worked with better, and they didn’t pick on me as much. I still endured a couple of minor pranks, but the worst prank of all was yet to come.
My shift that day started much like any other. I got a cup of soda and labeled it with my name, and checked in with my boss to see what he wanted me to do. I was assigned to wash the dishes, so I put my cup down on the back shelf and got started. It took me about two hours to wash all that were there, and I was thirsty when I had finally finished. I dried my hands and went over to the back shelf to get my soda.
One of my coworkers was nearby, slicing onions. He had a smirk on his face as I reached for my cup, but I didn’t think anything of it. I grabbed my cup and took a swig. My coworker started laughing, and suddenly I realized why.
He had emptied out my soda and filled my cup with onion juice.
I gagged and choked and coughed violently. I threw the cup down on the counter and ran outside through the rear door. My stomach was lurching, and I barely made it to the dumpsters before I threw up.
I hate onions, even the smallest ones. I had taken a big mouthful of pure onion juice, taken from the strong onions the restaurant was known for using. I stood at the dumpster for a few minutes, my stomach retching and dry heaving.
When I finally went back inside, the other people I worked with were laughing at the joke. Once they saw how sick I was, they stopped. The guy who was responsible for the prank apologized, but I reported him to my boss and he got suspended from work for the rest of the week. He felt bad that I got sick from it, and offered to buy me anything I wanted off the menu. I left work that night with a large pizza that cost him almost thirty dollars.
I didn’t work there for much longer after that. The environment didn’t improve much, and I found a job at a local pharmacy that had better hours, better pay, and zero risk of getting onion juice put in my drink. I was thankful for the experience of my first job, but I was glad to finally move on.
Since then I have held six other jobs, and my first job is still the one I hated the most.
Anyone else have a bad work experience?
Monday, January 26, 2009
Saturday, January 24, 2009
Friday, January 23, 2009
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
Yesterday, I got it into my head that I wanted to build a small bookshelf for the top of my dresser. I had all that I needed to build it: a couple of 2x4's, a hand saw, some screws, and a cordless drill. I knew that this wasn't going to be a wood shop masterpiece, and as I was taking measurements I dubbed it a White Trash bookshelf.
I was just about done cutting all the pieces when my hand slipped and brushed against the blade of the saw. I didn't even realize I had cut myself until I felt something running down my hand. It was bleeding at a pretty good rate, and with nothing to stop the bleeding immediately at hand, I stuck my finger in my mouth and ran inside.
I got the bleeding to stop after five minutes or so, and cleaned it out as best I could with peroxide and hot water. I knew I was out of date for my tetanus shot, and I suspected I might need a stitch or two for the cut, so I called my doctors office to let them know I was coming in.
45 minutes later, I walked out of my doctors office with a sore arm from the tetanus shot and two stitches in my finger. It was an exciting afternoon to say the least. I wont post any pictures, because the wound isn't very pleasant to look at.
By this time tomorrow morning, I will be en route to the bus terminal to make the trip down to Boston for an appointment with my neurologist. I want to thank all of those who responded to my plea for help a couple of weeks ago. Your donations helped make this visit to Boston for my appointment possible, and for that I am very grateful.
As with each time I make this medical pilgrimage, I’m not really sure what to expect for an outcome from this appointment. I hope to be one step closer towards a diagnosis, but I know that there is too much speculation at this point for that to be all but a speck on the horizon. It took my mother (who has the same neurological problems as I do) nine years to get her diagnosis. I don’t expect it to be that long for me. At least I hope so.
The worst part about all of this is not knowing what it is. If it was Multiple Sclerosis or Epilepsy or even the brain tumor they’ve speculated about, at least I’d know what it is. I would accept a diagnosis of cancer at this point, if just to finally know what all of this is. It is unbelievably frustrating for me, and for my doctor I’m sure, to go to these appointments being hopeful for an answer but walking away feeling just as confused and lost. This experience has been like, and pardon my use of the cliché, a never-ending roller coaster... One that straps you in and doesn’t let you off, throwing you for loop after loop of high-rising emotions and anxiety, loneliness and questioning, depression and fear.
While I know I won’t get a diagnosis this time around, I know that I can at least expect to get some more information. There will be some comparing of the MRI scans of myself, my mother, and my younger sister, to see if there are any similarities between all three. We know already that both my mother and I have Grey Matter Heterotopia in the same region of the brain, but it is unknown if my younger sister, who has petite-mal seizures, has it, too. In addition to that, I hope to talk about the sleep study I had done in September. If I can’t get a definitive answer, I’ll take as much information as I can get.
Tomorrow is sure to be a long day, but at least the weather looks like it will be decent. I’ll be back on Friday with a post detailing the information gained at this appointment, and possibly some pictures of The Boss’ cat Liam, who is scheduled to be neutered on Friday.
As always, I’ll be updating via Twitter as much as I can, and you can send short messages to my cell phone by e-mailing me at badassgeek(at)vtext(dot)com.
See you on Friday!
Monday, January 19, 2009
Saturday, January 17, 2009
- Where is your cellphone? On my desk.
- Where is your significant other? At her parents house.
- Your hair color? Brown.
- Your family? Yes, I have them, and I like them occasionally.
- Who you miss the most? The Boss's old cat, because her death made her sad.
- Your favorite thing? My iPod.
- Your dream last night? Scarlett Johannson. Whipped cream.
- Your dream/goal? To not be homeless someday.
- The room you're in? My office.
- Your hobby? Writing, photography, and writing music.
- Your fear? Car accidents.
- Where do you want to be in six years? Someplace different. Chicago?
- Where were you last night? Asleep, drooling on the couch.
- What you're not? Either rich, skinny, or hung like a horse.
- One of your wish list items? This.
- Where you grew up? Auburn, Maine.
- The last thing you did? Answered question 16.
- What are you wearing? Boxer briefs, SmartWool socks, jeans, and a Van Halen t-shirt.
- Your TV? Heavy as fuck, with a gigantic 20" screen.
- Your pet? A demonic hell-beast bastard Maine Coon cat.
- Your computer? A geriatric Dell Inspiron 1000 laptop.
- Your mood? Tired.
- Missing someone? Always.
- Your car? The love of my life, my 1998 Ford F-150 V8.
- Something you're not wearing? Lipstick.
- Favorite store? Any place gadgets are sold.
- Your summer? Yes, I'd like it back, please.
- Love someone? Most of the time, yes.
- Your favorite color? Black.
- The last time you laughed? Yesterday afternoon.
- The last time you cried? In October, when seeing The Boss sad about her cat's death.
- I am quite possibly addicted to Mountain Dew.
- I drool when I sleep. And when I say drool, I mean it's like my mouth is a faucet for drool. I have to change my pillowcase fairly often. It's quite gross.
- When I was a Resident Advisor in college, I had alcohol in my mini-fridge. I lived in an alcohol-free dorm, and I was underage. The night I put the alcohol in my fridge, I busted two parties where alcohol was present and got two kids arrested.
- I enjoy watching Jeopardy when it's Teen Week, because the questions are easier and it makes me feel smarter.
- I knew I was in love with The Boss the first time we went out to eat together, three months after we had been dating. She ordered a bacon cheeseburger, and finished her meal before I did. She also burped loudly.
- I cannot keep a houseplant alive, no matter how much I try.
- I hate country music. I tolerate it in small amounts because The Boss likes it, but otherwise it makes me want to pull my hair out.
- The closest thing to porn that I own is the DVD of "Wild Things".
- When I worked for a hotel and conference center, I would volunteer to help clean up after big weddings or parties. People thought I did it just to be nice, but I only did it so I could have access to all the empty returnable bottles and cans. I would clear almost $30 from the returnables from one party.
- I drink close to a half gallon of water each day. I am always thirsty, but test negative for diabetes.
Friday, January 16, 2009
- Your nose hairs freeze,
- Your nipples become hard and threaten to cut through your shirt,
- Your eyes water in the cold wind, and the tears freeze on your face,
- Big Willy and The Twins shrink and shrivel up inside you,
- The joints in your knees and ankles creak nosily,
- All coordination is lost in the hands from wearing gloves.
Thursday, January 15, 2009
- Who gets out of bed to shut the bedroom light off at night,
- Who reprimands the cat when he's gotten into something,
- Who decides what to have for dinner,
- Who chooses what to watch on TV,
- Who takes the trash out,
- Who loads or unloads the dishwasher,
- Who cleans the catbox, etc
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
It was our first night in our new apartment, late in October last year.
After a long day of packing, lifting, moving, carrying, sweating, and cursing, I wanted nothing more than to fall into bed and go to sleep. I had made four trips back and forth between our current-yet-soon-to-be-former apartment and our new apartment, and the aching in my joints supported that fact.
The fluorescent bulbs in the ceiling light made a faint tinkling noise as I flipped on the light switch in the bedroom. I slowly peeled off my clothes, leaving them in a pile in the corner. I changed into a fresh pair of boxers, and fell into bed.
The sheets were cool and my eyelids were heavy. I rolled over onto my back and placed one arm over my eyes, shielding them from the light on the ceiling. I sighed heavily, willing the muscles in my back to loosen.
“Long day, huh?” The Boss asked. She entered the room and pulled the door closed behind her.
“You can say that again,” I said. I threw in a low moan, hoping to illicit some sympathy. It didn’t work. I pulled my arm back, reaching over to my nightstand and turning on my lamp. “And you want to know what the best thing is? I get to do it all again tomorrow.”
“Fun!” The Boss said, feigning excitement. She changes into pajamas, and after shutting off the lights, gets into bed beside me. Her nightly routine of shuffling around underneath the covers begins as she searches for the most comfortable position. As customary, I retreat to the far side of the bed, laying on my side until she feels content. Finally still, she pulls the covers up to her chest, and looks at the ceiling.
“Are those fingerprints?” she asked. A slight quiver in her voice catches my ear, so I roll over onto my back again.
“Fingerprints. Are those fingerprints on the ceiling?” She points up at the wood paneling on the ceiling. I rub my eyes and focus them on the ceiling above, illuminated by my bedside lamp.
Sure enough, there are dark red fingerprints all over the ceiling. The entire ceiling is covered in them, some in bunches, and others spread out like a handprint without the palm. A chill sets into my spine.
“Yeah, I think they are fingerprints,” I said. “That’s strange.”
“Are they made in blood?” The Boss asks. She turns her face away.
“In blood? No, I don’t think so.” I continue to stare at the hundreds of smudged prints above me. “I think they are just stains. You know, like wood stain. It must have happened when they installed the ceiling.”
“Are you sure?”
“Yeah, I’m sure. How else could they have gotten there?” I said, putting an air of confidence in my voice that I didn’t really feel. I felt uneasy, but pushed away the thought. It’s a new house, and it’s the first night here. This place is bound to feel a little creepy at first.
“I don’t know…” The Boss said. “It’s kind of creepy.” She shivers and, rolling to her side, pulls the blankets up to her chin.
“It is, I guess. Just don’t look at it,” I suggest, and kissed her on the nose. “Whoever installed the ceiling obviously didn’t let the wood stain dry long enough before touching it. I just don’t understand why they wouldn’t have touched it up.”
We lie there in silence for a few minutes before we kiss each other goodnight.
As much as I rationalize how the ceiling got marred with fingerprints, I keep circling back to this one horror-movie image in my mind. You know, where some evil un-dead pre-teenager with a grudge and greasy hair crawls around on the ceiling with bloody hands… Suffice to say, I had a fitful night sleep that night, with all the nightmares.
My overactive imagination, while good for writing fiction, does not help when confronted with situations like this.
Monday, January 12, 2009
It comes to me at night.In the time between closing my eyesand opening them,it tears me up and I bleed again.Quietly, my mind in pieces,I am forced to rebuild what remains, buthow can I expect to survive today,being all of this, broken?It comes to me again now...Now a grip that chills my heartinto beating faster, now teeth to rake mylungs, holding breath.I lay still, here,blinking away the dark...and failing to patch the holeyou left behind.
Saturday, January 10, 2009
- Involuntary leg and arm movements
- Short-term memory loss
- Slurred speech
- Vision impairment
- Decrease in motor skills
Friday, January 9, 2009
Thursday, January 8, 2009
- I wasn't paying attention and misjudged where the stair was, or
- The staircase shrunk slightly at the exact moment that I stepped down.
Wednesday, January 7, 2009
Monday, January 5, 2009
Deerr MichaelItz ovurr beatween us Imm sorreey it had to ennd this wayIsle alwayz remembr uluv
Saturday, January 3, 2009
- Open box, and remove CD.
- Insert CD into stereo, and select track one, "Fuel".
- Consume one (1) whoopie pie while listening to the song. Be sure to chew thoroughly to avoid choking. If desired, keep a glass of milk nearby to quench thirst.
- If the calming affect is not achieved after one (1) song and one (1) whoopie pie, repeat steps above, substituting track one for the next track on the CD, "Sad But True".
- If there is still no relief after two (2) songs and two (2) whoopie pies, please stop. DO NOT OVER INDULGE. Contact your physician or therapist.
Thursday, January 1, 2009
- I will put on my pants with my left leg first, instead of my right.
- I will alternate picking my nose between my left and right index finger.
- When sitting on the couch with The Boss, I'll aim my farts at her instead of away.
- I will shave more than once every quarter-year.
- I will ignore The Boss' pleas to not burp in the cat's face.
- I will say what I mean, and mean what I say.
- I will let my voicemail answer call's from family members who I don't care to talk to at that moment.
- I will sing along to music while driving without holding my cellphone to my ear so it seems that I'm actually talking on the phone, not singing.
- I will blame my lack of politically correctness on ignorance.
- After dealing with asshole doctor's at work, instead of fuming silently, I will page their beeper's to telephone numbers for explicit phone sex.
- I will not tolerate watching anything that has, in any capacity, Ms Looks-Like-A-Foot herself, Sarah Jessica Parker.
- I will not feel guilty saying "No" when my employer calls me on my day off and asks me to work.
- I will stay up to watch the ball drop on New Year's Eve next year, instead of going to bed before 10pm.