March 31, 2005

Signs of spring:

1) Being awakened by the mating calls of hundreds of birds outside my window, especially one nasty cardinal who pierced through to whatever dream I was having causing me to bolt upright.
2) 70 degrees F on Tuesday. Thunderstorms last night. 40 degrees today.
3) The question as to why, when the power went out last night, did only some of my clocks begin their incessant blinking and demanding to be reset while others took no notice of the loss of sustenance (and no, they had no battery backup).
4) The mild doppelbock hangover I have after too many of them while attempting to work on taxes last night. Yes, I know - taxes and alcohol don't mix. But you haven't seen my taxes. And I'm hoping I can use it as a ploy: "I forgot to fill in that line due to inebriation". Doubtful that it will work. The irs has no sense of humour.

March 29, 2005

'Tis the season!

Late March.
Time for Capital Brewery's Blonde Doppelbock. Only comes around once a year, but...good god - is it worth it!
For those of you not in the South Central Wisconsin area, I can only say.....Good! More for me! Nyah, Nyah, Nyah!
Especially since it is such a short lived season, I have to try to stock up so my stash lasts at least until July 4th. Anything after that, and it starts to get a bit old and skunky. So, you can imagine, it is a carefully thought out and planned purchasing event. The spreadsheets are legion from January onwards. Until, finally, now. The sweet taste of liquor store conquest.
Ahhhh...the tastes of summer. In March.

March 28, 2005


Why do prescription bottles for tablets specifically point out "Take one tablet by mouth" ?
Do they really think people would be stupid enough to take this little tiny pill and shove it up their ass? Or crush it into powder and snort it? Or -

Oh...wait.....I guess I can see their point, after all.

Financial Irony

So, with everything financially bad happening, guess what showed up in my mailbox?
A letter telling me that I was already Pre-Approved to borrow money. Even in my current catatonic state, I laughed uproariously. Which doesn't happen too often lately.
Did these folk even bother to check my credit report?
I'm sure the interest was probably at 847% or something outrageous, but still....
I'm almost tempted to take them up on it so I can shortly drag them into the impending legal battles as well just to wake them up.

When you're right, you're right....

I have realized that my blog title, 'Harrumph!', hasn't come close to being fulfilled. Instead, I have been wallowing in the mire - my own little drama (complete with internal audience) - that played out not only in my head but in this public forum as well.
No more.
I will now begin what I set out to do initially - to try to capture the idiocies of the human condition and use my naturally cynical outlook for the appropriate commentary.
While it won't be any more productive with regard to the grand scheme of things, it should prove to be a tad bit more fun!
And any emotional outpourings will be relegated either to songwriting or to my therapist (sometimes both the same thing), where they belonged in the first place.


p.s. still don't have the web site up yet...argh!

March 24, 2005

Down then Up then Down is down again. My benevelent server host got rooted and now has to rebuild. I feel bad, since I've been in the same predicament.
Ah, well....after being up then down so many times, it is kinda in the nature of The Ear Of Donges to be in flux.
And, considering events of late, it is conforming to my personality as well.
There's a sodden thought....

March 19, 2005

Making Chicken Soup

Snow. Multiple inches of snow. Cold. Not a good day to venture forth from the confines of the abode.
Sometimes I can surprise myself with my visionary abilities, since I stocked up yesterday on all the ingredients to make my world famous Pennsylvania style Chicken Noodle Soup. So I don't have to run out in the external nasty environment to make it. Already simmering for the last hour, I plan on being completely sickened by the smell of bubbling broth by dinnertime.
Thankfully, I have a kid who really enjoys the stuff and is looking forward to turning a friend onto it at their sleepover here tonight. Might be a bad move, since this friend's parents own a restaurant to which I will inevitably be compared. Hmmm...better go add some more sage to the mix....

March 18, 2005

Another,, Phrase You Can Use

This one from Frank Herbert in "Dune". Something to bring out when necessary. Good litany. Just too bad the Bene Gesserit used their males primarily as breeding stock.....

Bene Gesserit Litany Against Fear

I must not fear.
Fear is the mind-killer.
Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration.
I will face my fear.
I will permit it to pass over me and through me.
And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path.
Where the fear has gone there will be nothing.
Only I will remain.

March 17, 2005

Not gonna do it

i don't want to do this anymore....

Hence, the new mantra:

I refuse to be a victim of my own life any longer!

March 16, 2005

Breakfast of Champions...

Coffee and a lightly toasted Lexapro with no butter. did I ever get through the mornings before?
It was a long and painful night, but at least nothing else was! ;)

Actually, once sleep finally came about 2 hours after I went to bed, I slept all the way through until the alarm. No ruminating at 3:30, which is a relief. Obsessing over trivia in the early morning hours is far worse, to my mind, than having a Sheena Easton song running endlessly in a mental loop...and that has happened.
And another day of adventure and chaos dawns...

March 14, 2005

Fantastic cheap vodka!

A vodka out of Minnesota called UV is my current fave.
It is distilled four times so it is very smooth. It is carbon filtered. It was a gold medal winner at the 2004 San Fransisco World Spirits Competition. It is made in a sister state, so you can support the somewhat local economy. It is made out of corn instead of the more expensive potatoes or barley, so it helps midwest farmers and is cheaper to produce. Which leads me to the number one reason why I like this vodka:
It is just as good as Absolut or Skyy, but it costs almost exactly half the price.

Don't you hate people?

I was just going to leave the title alone - it seemed to fit, somehow.
But I guess I should qualify it after all.
What I meant to say was "Don't you hate people that enthusiastically ask "How was your weekend?
Let's just say, fer instance, that you just had a really bad weekend. A weekend that is in the running for one of the worst. Okay, the ultimate weekend in suck. The worst, shittiest and most disgustingly vile weekend that you have ever had or ever hope to encounter in your all-too-brief span of existence on this global cesspool we live on.
You know, one of those.
How do you answer? Do you go into a rant like the above? Absolutely not, 'cause they don't want to hear it. And if they do want to hear it, you shouldn't be talking to them anyway, the creepy nosy little bastards.
In fact, they don't even want to hear "not so good" or "crappy" or even a mild "could have been better". What they want is for you to exude positronic emotions and gush about how great it was and all the things you did and how wonderful life is. Probably so they can live vicariously through you since their weekend was also for crap.
But of course you can't do that (see above paragraph on how bad your weekend actually was) so you are reduced to mono-syllabic utterances like "eh" while wobbling your hand idiotically in front of your face. Or a quick gloss-over: "Okay, how was yours?". Which is actually the best way to do it since it puts the onus back on them so they can scramble around trying to decide how best to answer you!

March 13, 2005

Not ironic, just unfortunate - A Short Story

© 2005 - Guy Donges

The speedometer was approaching 65 and the target was still a mile up the road. This was gonna be easy. After all, he'd been slowly killing himself for years, hadn't he? The cigarettes which he couldn't quit, the booze, the unprotected sex. One quick moment into the rock wall and it would be finally over. He'd even made sure the wall was far enough off the highway so that any debris would never be able to make it back to impede the progress or safety of travelers behind. Considerate asshole.

Five years is a long time but it sure didn't feel like it at this point. Five years, when compressed into this incomprehensible emotional morass he felt himself in now was a blink. A flash. A flash – that was a good one. How 'bout a boom? Or a smack? Ha!

The 'wet duck syndrome' is what everyone called his ability to let adversity roll off his back. “Nothing ever seems to get you down” they would always say. It was a point of pride for him that he was sooo mature and sooo above the lowly mortals who let things like anger, sadness and despair get in the way of their happy life. When, actually, all he really did was ignore. Anger? Repress it. Sadness? A happy face on the world made the day better. The divorce so long ago was proof of that. So stoic, nobody ever knew how much of a failure he felt. Instead, it was portrayed as a positive moving-on-with-the-next-phase-of-life event. Idiot.

70 now. At this rate he should be able to hit at least 95 before impact. Glancing down at the speedometer, he noticed that his seatbelt was on. Talk about force of habit. That would be fitting, though, wouldn't it? End up maimed but alive. Shithead. He unbuckled the belt and ignored the warning dinging from under the dash. Should have pulled that fuse along with the one for the airbag.

He turned up the radio to drown out the irritating chime. Talk radio. Change stations. Commercials. Change stations. Country. Seemed to fit the mood, but change stations quickly. Although he disliked country music, he thought the stereotype of it being downer music was wrong. Rock had its own share of tuneage celebrating the idiocies of being human. Should have burned a cd of favorites to bring along. Finally settled on the classic rock station, even though he was sick to death of most of their playlist. Had been sick of them 20 years ago and they hadn't gotten better with time. That was okay. Neither had he.

The job loss had been harder to take. Economy tanking. Not able to move because of the kids. Can't find anything. Suck it up and work as a contractor for the company that just fired your ass. No security. No benefits. But at least it was money coming in. Should have hired a financial manager to ensure that he took enough out for the taxes. The IRS has no sense of humor.

Hitting 75. His palms were getting sweaty. Should have brought a napkin or something. He wiped the moisture off on his jeans leg. Knees shaking. Should have taken a Valium or something but it had been years since he knew anyone who sold anything illicit. A couple of shots would have done it, but he hadn't driven after alcohol since the DUI. Another self-deprecating snort.

The fire hadn't helped his mood or his finances any. Sure, he had renter's insurance – it was cheap enough – but there are always things that slip through the cracks that you have to replace. Not that his belongings meant all that much except for the guitars. Still living like a bohemian after all these years. Mismatched furniture, cheap shelving units. It would have been better if the place had just burned to the ground and he could have just collected the insurance money and started over. But smoke damage is cleanable, so he got most of the same crap back. Worse shape than initially, to be sure, since vinyl veneered pressboard entertainment centers don't take kindly to more than one assembly/disassembly process. At least it hadn't collapsed under its own weight yet.

Wow. Up to 82. Who'd have thought that this little four-cylinder could handle this? At least the hounding creditors wouldn't be getting this back unless they had one helluva hot glue gun. Turns out that buying this had been another mistake although it had seemed reasonable at the time. Looked like he had found a job but it had a 90 minute commute; it wouldn't have worked to drive that old gas hog van at 3 miles per gallon. Too bad the job fell through after all. Should have waited for final confirmation.

The final straw was the breakup with the great love of his life. What finally ended it was not a huge dramatic scene where he could see himself as the victim again. Instead, it was the slow slipping away of love and togetherness. So preoccupied with the day to day problems, he had forgotten (again) what was truly important. A walking lesson in repetitive history. But god, how he loved her. The highs were so high and the lows so non-existent that it proved to him the true existence of soul mates. He should have been more attentive. But now after so much time he wasn't sure anymore if he loved her or the idea of loving her and the remembrance of the incredible happiness high. Was it just clinging to what once was? The wet duck would have known what to do but it had died a while back of overindulgence. In any event, they had gone through this too many times for her ever to trust his stability again. Shit, even he couldn't trust his stability anymore.

90 now. The granite surface looming overhead sheared straight and plumb to the ground. Would be a clean impact. The force should throw him through the windshield and flatten his skull on the smooth sheer rock.

91 Wonder if it will hurt?

92 and going up. But what if he doesn't get thrown but instead is impaled on the steering column to wait in agony for the police to get there? What if there really is an omnipotent superior being and this is not his day to die? What if reincarnation really is true and a lingering vegetative state is somehow tied up in what he's supposed to learn in life this time around? What if reincarnation really is true and he comes back as a salamander? Should have left a note.

A note? Didn't leave a note. How will anyone have any idea what drove him to this final act of desperation? And she'll never know how much he loved her and will always believe that it was the ending of them that caused this. When it was really the culmination of many things over many years. Can't do this now. Can fix this. Can get past the current problems and get life back on track again.

I Can't Fucking Do This!

He slammed on the brakes just as the road curved to the left; just where he had planned on plunging through to the bluff. As the highway guard rail rushed up he twisted the wheel to try to force the impact to the side of the car and hopefully stay on the road. For a brief moment, it almost worked but then the natural force of physics took over and started the car skidding then breaking free and tumbling end over end spewing bits of body and glass all over the tar-filled-crack decorated asphalt surface. Funny what is noticed at the weirdest of times, but as he careened over two thankfully empty lanes into the boulder strewn median strip, he read the word 'Lost?' written sometime in tar by some orange vested maintenance clown.

* * * *

Patrolman Caulkins was writing up the accident report and looked up to see the paramedics push the gurney with the zipped up body bag to the back of the ambulance. It had taken 3 hours to cut the poor sap loose from the tangled mess that used to be a small SUV. Why the airbags didn't deploy was for someone else to figure out. No seat belts, either. Why he hadn't been thrown out of the vehicle was anybody's guess. Might have been better this time if he would have been 'cause he had had no chance inside.

He took a bite of his tuna on wheat and chewed thoughtfully. For sure the dude had been going way too fast. But the curve wasn't all that sharp. He probably had had a lot to live for. The guy shoulda been more careful, that's all.
He took the last bite of sandwich, put the cruiser in gear and slowly pulled away behind the ambulance.

Zoiks! And Away!
Will never mean the same again......

Nocturnal nonsense

Can't sleep.
And I even consumed a substantial number of beers earlier.
Didn't help.
I never used to have trouble sleeping. Actually, I should say that I never had trouble becoming comatose every night.
Now I end up laying here and watching stupid inane cinema like tonight's Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back.
Because it is better than listening to myself.

March 11, 2005

there is so much I want to write right now.
but i cannot.
the turmoil within which i am unable to capture one solitary concrete thought in order to restore some order keeps the words from flowing.
in fact i just had a conversation with myself where i could not even get a word in edgewise...i wanted to disagree but could not.
i would wonder why
except that the naked flesh where once was silver is a constant reminder of what has actually been lost.
i hate this.