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Before

A chronicle of an American life

“Your rent is 78 months overdue”

I’ve decided that when food rots in the fridge, it’s very psychically damaging. When food goes bad, for me it’s more like a betrayal. I look in there, I see a never-touched bag of salad greens or box of strawberries that one time held such promise — I feel such disappointment, like my children, they desert me. It hurts. It also doesn’t help that Officially De-Trucked Country Boy Arnie continues to buy these items, thusly compounding my sorrow and anguish. There are two walleye filets in there. We were informed, he says, that they would last only two days. I attempted to hide my emotions, but an arch remark escaped my lips. The walleye lie there, stillborn, markers of what never would be.

Fortunately we are seeing “eye” to “eye” on other issues — take the Pet Shop Boys, for example. So I happen to think Fundamental (and remix album Fundamentalism!) are some of the best CDs ever released in the last hundred years. I purchased about $100 of import singles through the mail — some new stuff, some old stuff. Arnie liked Flamboyant so much he had to hear it twice! Fundamental is quite the album. The first single was I’m With Stupid, about the love relationship between G. W. Bush and Tony Blair; “No one understands me / where I’m coming from / why would I be with someone who’s obviously so dumb?” The other great lines are “fly across the ocean / just to let you get your way” and “Do we really have a relationship so special in your heart?” Everything on the album is good. Buy it.

In other news, I guess I realize what a computer dork I still am, and I like it. Just today I ran into somebody in the hallway who wanted to know if I still liked IT as much as law, and I wound up teaching her AJAX in a nutshell, and actually got all excited! I also ran across an old 3.2GB drive and thought I’d put it into my ancient Pentium II Linux beater box, Passaic. (All my hardware is named after Jersey places.) Well it turned out to be the hard drive I used in college, and I found all this awesome Win98 stuff on it. “You last defragmented this drive 2,528 day(s) ago.” It has the NeoPlanet browser installed and I’ve got the horrible “Active Desktop” running now. I’m using the old “baseball” theme with the swinging bat instead of the hourglass. After I upgraded it to IE 6 I was able to run Windows Update. I need to run 25 critical updates and there are 40 more patches!

This is nothing. Last week I also decided to drag the old beloved TRS-80 Model III out of the basement and I found some of the old programs — Android Nim, computer bridge, and even CompuServe, that you had to use with the 300 baud external modem (in ANS or ORIG mode, please). Even ORCH-90 is there. It is so awesome.

And finally, last week I was also elected President of the Board of Trustees of the Connextions Lofts Homeowners’ Association. I am elated to be serving the building in this capacity! I advanced a capital plan that outlines spending almost $50,000 in improvements for our building, which should really improve the appearance and value of the units here. And, I got to meet some of my neighbors including the person who bought the unit next door. It was a great time and I look forward to a great year.

2 Comments

  Marcus wrote @ June 22nd, 2006 at 1:56pm

Wow! The president of the homeowners association. I went to a tenant meeting once in DC, and never came back.

  JUSTME wrote @ June 28th, 2006 at 12:49am

Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, tired and bleary,
Over many a quaint and curious cartoon of forgotten food,
While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,
As of some one gently rapping, rapping at my refrigerator door.
“‘Tis some visitor,” I muttered, “tapping at my ice box door
Only this, and nothing more.”
Ah, distinctly I remember it was in the heat of June,
And each separate dying crumb and morsel wrought their ghost upon the floor.
Eagerly I wished the morrow; vainly I had sought to borrow
Cups of sugar, steaks for grilling, and pounds of hummus oh sweet hummus
But all I found was food forsaken, old and dried, even some bad bacon
Nameless here for evermore.
And the silken sad uncertain rustling of each purple curtain
Thrilled me – filled me with fantastic terrors never felt before;
So that now, to still the beating of my heart, I stood repeating,
“‘Tis some mold and toxins, growing creeping multiplying behind my refrigerator door
This it is, and nothing more.”
Presently my soul grew stronger; hesitating then no longer,
Dialing gently to the health department, said I, ” Madam, truly your forgiveness I implore;”
But the fact is things are growing, hairy mold and green things wrapping,
Wrapping round my food both new and old, and tapping at my chamber door,
Dare I eat them, or shall I treat them
To the drain or trash can yonder lore?
Darkness there, and nothing more.
Deep into that ice box peering, long I stood there wondering, fearing,
Doubting, dreaming dreams no mortals ever dared to dream before;
But the silence was unbroken, and the stillness gave no token,
And the only word there spoken was the whispered word, “Food poisoning”
This I whispered, and an echo murmured back the word, “Food Poisoning”
Merely this, and nothing more.
The walleye lie there, stillborn, a marker of what never would be.
Crushed tomatoes, and wilted lettuce, milk gone bad, and turkey so green
Horrors I had never seen
Food Poisoning, Food Poisoning, only this and nothing more.
Soon again I heard a tapping somewhat louder than before.
“Surely,” said I, “surely that is something at my window lattice:
Let me see, then, what thereat is, and this mystery explore
Let my heart be still a moment and this mystery explore;
‘Tis pizza hut delivery and nothing more

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