Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Of Poker Chips and Walgreens

I got a really cool phone call tonight. My long-lost cousin's getting married in June. Congrats to him and my prayers go out to his fiance. The reason being is that my cousin had to ask me what I thought about which family members should he invite to the wedding. You see, I come from an extended family of the Mafia meets Jerry Springer meets the KGB vs CIA. War games not in the funny cute ways that "normal" familes have, but the kind you cringe on Jerry Springer thinking "Thank God We're Not Like That." Drugs, automatic weaponry, violence (both physical and mental), mixed with betrayal, anger, hurt, and general psychopathy. I mean actual guns waved in people's faces with not-empty-at-all threats included. My extended family is a dirty bomb that went off and makes the disaster of Hurricane Katrina look benign.

So when this very dysfunctional, very messed up family meets at funerals (that's all they can put up with these days), their offspring (that's us) slowly started becoming poker chips in a very serious poker game. "My son learned to read at 1 year old." "My daughter invented the wheel at that age.." Until slowly the poker chips reached adulthood. Only then the stakes were higher. Obviously, me being the oldest gave me the edge. "My daughter went to Pepperdine." That is until the other ones fell into line of good colleges and masters degrees etc etc.. whatever our successes could be bargained as, got thrown on the table of their pride/downfall.

As a poker piece, I hate it. Even as a secret part of me just dreads being the white piece (the $2 chip). It's kinda like eating one of those cakes from Ralph's with sour frosting which you eat because it's the nice thing to do (not necessarily the right thing to do as you search for a bathroom later that evening.)

So how does that relate to Walgreens? Well Walgreens is a portal to Chicago, I'm convinced. You walk in those doors and no matter where you are, you're transported to the Chicago stores I grew up around. The makeup aisle is exactly where it always is; the pharmacy in the back with its friendly workers there for 24 hours. The security guard at the front who smiles at you and is rarely white, and when white -- very fat. And when I logged in for my prescription, they had my Chicago address still in there and strangely enough, the same insurance (this time mine). Aside: My current company in California was purchased by a Chicago company who buys the insurance. Small World or God working mysteriously again. In any event, I walk through that portal and I think about my family hardcore. And yes I did shed a tear or two, but I love them. Even the messed-up ones. Even the ones addicted to drugs and violence. In some eerie way, I understand exactly what my cousin said. "Sometimes I wanna keep in touch with them; not obligated to, but kinda want to. Then I think about all the bullSh!t they create and I don't want to be a part of it, not really. But sometimes I wanna keep in touch with them."

I understand. I really do.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

The Reason Why Kisses Don't Dream

And under soft, it danced. Some painted lust.
Unsung hero, forgetful foolish friend,
so many mirrors hung fulfilled in dust-
like silk impressed on parted edges. There, end-

ed startled shadows bleeding petal prid-
ed class of strangled stranger's sparse predict-
ion: Never pretend love, as glass unbri-d
led, sparkling frozen diamond champagne picked

from hearth to glacier falls. Undone by word,
just one blended cappuccino bliss.
The girl, her lips -- pressed together purred
in draped despair, unfurled story. His kiss

that destiny in wicked crimson joy
unsnaps the lady's tickled jaded toy.

©1999 R A Jutzi

And so I wrote a sonnet in fifteen minutes way back when. Every time I had previously tried to write one they sounded awful. Subject matter sucked. Not until I literally pulled all the description out of me, all the emotion of being suckered, being rejected, wanting revenge, once that was done -- I wrote this genius piece in fifteen minutes. It is rare that I connect with my true soul; it is rarer still that I have allowed my audience a peek at it. Enjoy.

Also feel free to comment if you have any interpretations.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Risky Business

Denying my skills nothing, I pressed the chalk against the tip. I eyed the table for the ones that were mine. Blurred thinking, on account of the vodka, I carefully (probably more carefully than when sober) eyed my choices. And some obvious choices piqued my interest.

Swift aim and the right spin, the cue ball methodically spun towards its prize. Connection was swift and crackled, pain wretching but no time to think about that as the red 3 zoomed along the velvet planet drawing near the dark black hole, where none come out, and all save one go in.

The ball drops and a 'whoop' escapes my lips beneath the dimly lit ceiling. I hadn't really won anything; the battle still goes on. But somehow, in my heart of hearts, I feel the pulse of love beating on the gate.

Dare I drink that much fun? I do.

Things to cross off the Life List of Things To Do Before Death:

1. Party crash

Monday, August 22, 2005

I'm In It For His Sense of Humor

"He's worried that his fiance is marrying him for his money. Only knowing what I know, I can't say I disagree. She's not marrying him for his legal skills, I know that for sure. Or if she is, she's in for a terrible disappointment the first time she gives him an assignment."

Now that is classic. When most guys ask me for what I look for in a guy, I have to be honest: sense of humor, intelligence, looks -- in that order, specifically.

Hot idiots do not appeal to me. They tend to be insecure numbskulls who cover with arrogance, and arrogance is such a turn off. It's my job to tell you your body's hot.

  • Funny Bone-err
Sense of humor kinda entangles itself with intelligence. The kind of humor I'm interested in is either pure randomnity for the sake of randomness, or sarcastic gems that arrive as neatly-packaged insults doled out to those who deserve them. (Or as my friends like to do, aimed directly at me. I love y'all anyways.)

  • The CIA
Intelligence is a standalone. If you are asking yourself the question: I went to college, does that count?, I dare challenge you, not necessarily. I'm an edu-snob. And of coures Ivy Leagues are intriguing, but I have found the diamonds in the rough at other institutions (devry falls into this category). Basically, I need to know that I'm going to be able to say the word "Bush is an idiot" and even if you disagree you'll know what I'm talking about. Current events won't be limited to who in Hollywood broke up with whom and who's the biggest pop star this week.

  • The Hotness Factor

I'm not really into arrogance and that just means guys who know they're hot. Gym rats are usually in this category and well I don't mind a guy who's working out, but how's he working out, that's the question. Many times someone who does not have this quality "out the gate" can accrue points through a variety of sarcastic jokes and especially ripping on George "bubbles" Bush. I definitely go for tech geeks who have lived outside the box. I'm into that avid reader of Dragonlance, who doesn't know he was being checked out at 4th and Santa Monica Blvd. He's Abercrombie and 1pm snack-after-lunch. He's adorable because he's loveable. He's loveable because he's unique. And since he's unique, it's difficult for the common stalker to scam me on this one.

~Now to get to the good stuff~


I am not shallow. I have been poor, middle-class, and upper-middle-class. However, I know that there is no somewhat-stable man that can survive more than a month or so with a woman who makes more money than him. Now, if he does not know how much money she makes, and does not research to find out, and just accepts things, then perhaps money does not matter. In the event that those exceptions do not apply, the guy should probably make the same or more than me.

This is not supposed to disturb the Y-chromosomes out there. This is simply a fact of the machoism that you guys carry. For whatever reason, you guys like to one-up everyone. It's a fact of life. I challenge you to play a game that you know I'm simply better at than you, and just lose. Accept the loss and not even try to get better at it for a rematch. Will let me repeatedly beat the crap outta you for the entire afternoon and just take it. (HA! I snicker at the image.) Won't happen; doesn't matter what it is -- Tennis, Pac Man, Running, Fastest Eating Record, Longest Nose, whatever.


Let's get this straight. Not every girl is trying to trap you, alot might be. You have to look at it from our point of view. Society frowns upon the quirkyalone chick. We're supposed to be procreators, soccer moms, full-time working moms, etc. That's alot of pressure to find the "perfect" (aka Mom wishes she had procreated this one) man, and he's supposed to be romantic, always loving, and give us our way because he wants what we want. This is more of a FANTASY than the "2 girls on 1 boy" one; we know that. But it doesn't mean that being force-fed Disney romances for 20+ years is gonna suddenly snap us into reality. No one wants to find our shoe, kiss us awake, or ride up on a noble steed and wisk us up into a happy ending -- that reality is a little hard to swallow for the first 10 years of dating adulthood, so give us a break, will ya?

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

UnSurprising Angst

...continued "It must be hard knowing you married a stalker" part2

Fractured intent to commit the ultimate betrayal, I steadied my hand on the gun as I unholstered it. The time was ripe, the cliche echoed in my skull. Heartlessness crept within, blocking the soul from emotion. Unfeeling and numb my eyes now focused on the window. His chest spread at perfect angle in the dying sunlight. He lifted the window and pushed hard.

My hand aimed true. And a muffled recoil didn't need to echo as a spiderweb of crimson velvet shattered the man's muscular frame as he slumped forward, over the windowsill. I reholstered the gun, adjusted my sunglasses, and pulled my jacket closer, as streams of red spilled down the white siding.

My heart leapt back into my chest as I walked away, finished with yet another chapter in a harried life. A single tear dripped down my face and finally fell off of my chin. In the dying embers of day, I closed the door on my sleek black 3 series and reeled away slowly, rattling the groceries in the front seat.

I would await the remaining 15k and head into the lights and love of the city of sin as soon as possible. Sensual memories would drown in the endless glasses of jack and coke, as I'd let it ride over and over again. Drop 5k in an hour, play it safe. And hire some good entertainment. I'd order seven inches of delight and take my odds.


Sunday, August 14, 2005

I Want A Raccoon Tail

I don't know if many of you know anything about gaming, but I, myself, am an avid one. I have a mint condition Nintendo 8 bit and several games, as well as a PS2. Both I love dearly and for different reasons.

I hadn't played the Nintendo in like a year or so. So I fired it up on my Sony Wega flat-screen TV. (I do realize that there are emulators for Nintendo on the 'Net, but I didn't want to keyboard jump; it's just not the same as the non-ergonomic controller.)

After unsuccessfully remembering the final warp on Mario 1, I moved on to Tetris. And that song just starts annoying the hell out of me. So even if I'm actually doing well at it, this go 'round, that song just irritates the hell outta me. And I can't play with no music at all! So I switch over to Mario 3 and I was just remembering that games like that one are long. But this was before memory cards or saving power. (Ok, afficianados, I know you're gonna say "Final Fantasy 1" is saveable. Well, folks, that may be true, in theory. But if you got a Nintendo that blinks pink or scribbly the first, second, fifth, tenth time you push the cartridge in, then you know, that any saved game is forever lost on that stupid FF1. And how many times have you been about to go into the hole(with all the poisonous crap and a hella long forest walk to the Elven village left) sleep in a tent, then come out and save. You go to bed; it's about 4am, so you wanna get some rest before work; then you come home to play and you go through the drill of stuffing the cartridge in a million and one times and blowing, and the whole setup to get it to go -- and then you load 'er up. And your game is gone. You're back at the stupid castle hearing about the quest for crystals. Anyway, I obviously say this story with some authority and I do have a point.

So I pull out the Mario 3 cartridge. I wanna fly, and without owning a SuperNintendo, I can't be superman mario, so I'll take raccoon/bear tail flying Mario. Not quite as fun as floating around as the Princess and throwing carrots and goombas in Mario 2, but satisfactory to say the least.

I'm flyin' around. I've got my tail, I'm taking hits left and right. And remember this is the one that gives you so many extra guys it's crazy. Then you get to play slots every once in a while. I should be in Vegas betting on the Flower top, flower middle, flower bottom. Hell maybe even the star. I'd get an extra five lives anyway.

Anyway, I get fed up with the last few levels on world 2. So of course I use the flute to warp (the only way to play an unsaveable game) to world 5, where I do okay. Until I get to World 5-8 and get the crap beat out of my small mario who no longer has any powerups other than music box which can only be used on those damn hammer/boomerang brothers. No good here. So I run outta lives and let sleeping dogs lie. Besides it's midnight and I gotta work tomorrow.

And it's not Circa 1986 where school's the only thing going on tomorrow. I gotta actually function tomorrow. :) So to all the gamers I say goodnite. And to the rest o' yall too!

Saturday, August 13, 2005

09/11/ 2001 - Is My Generation's Pearl Harbor

I've read all the conspiracy theories, and I've heard the mainstream media's take on the events. I've even watched Farenheit 911. And I have to think that there are a lot of questions out there that haven't been answered. I pray that maybe the History Channel will investigate using forensics on the information the government finally releases in fifty years and George W. Bush is finally dead, thankee. I won't be (or so I predict). And in my retirement facility, living off of the small 401k and a destroyed Social Security check (if W gets his way), hell maybe I won't even be able to afford a retirement home, anyway, I'll be watching that special. I'll Tivo the hell out of it and think "I told ya so," in a melancholic way that holds not one lick of satisfaction.

For me, I remember where I was that evil morning. My best friend's birthday, and my mother's ringing my cell off the hook at an especially early hour. Damn, I don't wake up that early for work; Mom, it's the west coast over here. That didn't stop terrorists from crashing into the towers. Like everyone says, it was a well orchestrated movie. It's almost like W and his crew put together a focus group, and said 'now here's $10. what did you think and how can we make this scarier, sadder even?' But this wasn't a live-action film. This was our very own reality show; entertainment with real live people, not actors -- both heroes and villains.

I do believe there were some stupid kids high on rhetoric on those planes. (However, I'm not so sure it was a plane that killed the Pentagon.) They didn't even realize the scale of political agenda they were on. This was way over their heads, and as pawns, they acted faithfully, calling out to a false god who demands sacrifice of self and "infidels." They were as high on rhetoric as the Hitler Youth were in the '40s -- a generation way before my time, but I can read history and check my notes. It's easier to tell a 24-year-old who believes in immortality that he's gonna die and get a bunch of angelic sex when he dies; notice none of these guys were forty-fivers raising hands in salute.

But the studies are in. There's no way jet fuel or anything short of the controlled demolition we saw could cause those reinforced towers to slip into dust, not even massive piles of debris, DUST I tell you.

And our idiot president (no capital "P" if you barely speak English and God help you when you're defending your Christian hypocrisy before Him) sat reading "My Pet Goat" to a classroom of children while the country he stole power over was going to shit, excuse my language. (Sarcastic aside, maybe My Pet Goat is his favorite all-time novel. I'm an English major, that's how I think.)

They all knew it was coming. I don't think they planned it, until they caught wind of that "static" and of course translated everything. (Of course they want us to believe the CIA and the FBI were a bunch of bumbling fools, but I think not.) Then they planned alright. Planned on how to get Daddy's bully and demolish him, while acquring money for W's best contractor friends, and oh, by the way, "Oil Is On Sale, now for a limited time" or so W thought. Daddy obviously proved to be more competent in war, but come on -- you barely speak English, you make up words, use phrases that sounded pretty before you knew what the words meant, and act like a total incompetent ass. And did I mention the extreme resemblance to Bubbles, MJ's fondling pet?

I write this not because I'm unpatriotic. I write this because I am Patriotic. And it's time our brothers, sisters, mothers, daughters, fathers, sons, and my friends get to come home. They hate their boss more than any one of us civilians do; the rest are Hitler Youth - "hail Hitler" they chant, ignorantly. Of course, they're the kids that barely passed history class, if they even took it. History repeats itself darlings.

I love America so much I needed to write this. So that any legislative, judicial or executive body could possibly read this. Please, stop the political bullshit and start the recovery of your country. We voted you in for a reason. We thought you would help us, not hurt us. All you guys seem to be doing is sitting on your asses, making huge sums of our money, and not feeling guilty. How can you sleep at night without your integrity? Knowing how harshly you will be judged. I pray every night for forgiveness; I hope you do. You guys have all this power to make a difference; why don't you start making a positive one?

I would if I had even 1/10 of your funds and 1% of your power. I'm trying to even without that. I implore you again; help us, don't hurt us. We love our country; I love America.

And for my audience that has less prestige than I do. Pray for our country, and our leaders -- that they wake up and smell the sunshine. And start reading all the interesting questions that have come up. Don't be duped -- know all the sides before you decide.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

. . . Melliferous

Sometimes I think I'm wandering around inside history, and I'm either hopelessly lost, or appallingly trapped. And then I feel melancholy. Just a few rock songs later, and the eerie emotion's cemented and all I can think about is the people I've moved on from. Ex close friends and ex boyfriends alike, these people are cloistered in the storage container marked "memories to forget." Yet somehow, those memories don't remain forgotten since I keep dredging them up, like WinAmp movies on loop repeat.

So I'm walking around in Santa Monica, which always has the faint scent of excrement on a breeze that should reek of salt and sand. Mingled in unreality, I walk to lunch where I sit at a table much too close to a neighboring table, so close that the occupants' conversation might as well be mine, as I try not to look either of them in the eye.

Apparently, Mindy and New York Girl are in therapy and the siblings of the two feel at ease discussing Mindy and New York Girl's personal issues right there at noon, sun burning the retinas of tourists and locals alike. Mindy has both anorexia and depression issues, New York Girl just depression. Their family members are complaining about how hard it is to deal with these precious people, instead of loving and living. But the siblings' self-absorption seems to have skimmed the point here. Their beloved sisters are in trouble, and although bitter and difficult to live with, these ladies are hurting inside. Forgive them, for they know not what they do.

So I leave the restaurant in a weird mind space and zone out. I enter some other reality where I'm trying to disperse and process the stories I'd just overheard, and my rather strong feelings about it. As the 7-11 zooms into view, I smell roses and geraniums, and wonder if I'm in some other parallel universe. The inside of the store is cool, clean and neat, and they're playing classical music. It's relaxing.

Nestled between the bottled water and the magazine rack are cans of tennis balls, and that makes me confused. (A 24 hour need for tennis balls?) In the midst of these conflicts, I start to realize that Santa Monica, is indeed, not Kansas.

In other news: Insecurity beats at the heart of every individual. Am I safe, we ask, and we're never really assured, no matter what anyone says, or does.

We need affection to feel loved; we need encouragement to feel motivated. And sometimes that's not even enough.

But why is it that we can't ever find contentment? Or perhaps that's just my plight. I find myself cynical in search of the mythical soulmate. I hear the paradox in the statement, don't get me wrong, but I haven't much else to do. I can either fuck anything that moves, and feel no respect nor joy, just the satisfaction of the desires my hormones have inflicted upon me. Only to wake up to a morning after (plus pill), (I'm not looking forward to creating a new crop of humanity without the mythical soulmate.)

The Mythical Soulmate
-(s)he looks into your eyes and knows
(s)he isn't perfect, but isn't afraid to admit it either
(s)he takes your breath away, when his/her head is turned 'just right'
(s)he smiles. often.
(s)he would love to share his/her life with you
(s)he wonders about you when you're apart
(s)he sees you for who you are and who you're to become, sometimes before you know
(s)he makes your heart race with passion, in discussions and sex
(s)he wants the best for you, no matter how painful that is
(s)he isn't afraid
(s)he challenges you, loves you, and will work to keep that
(s)he is able to finish your thoughts but knows it's rude to do so
(s)he would defend you (to the pain) to his/her mother
(s)he writes poetry about you in his/her journal
--feel free to add to the list --

So if you know of this person, don't tell me about it, let me accidentally find it, so I can actually believe it's real.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

In Memory Of Joe Maldonado

I woke up this past Monday morning and it wasn't unlike any other Southern Californian morning. Perfect marine layer to be burned off by afternoon, traffic the same as always. And I arrived at work, and just another day at the office.

But life is short, and this average morning turned dark. A great man -- kind, handsome, with a beautiful smile, died over the weekend in a car accident, all the more tragic because he was so young and had so much going for him. All the details are 'instant messaged' rumors flying around by those of us who care.

I can't say I knew you Joe Maldonado as well as I now wish I had. However, you always brightened my day with that beautiful smile. And I can say in tremendous consolation, I am glad you touched my life at Intermix Media. And you did, whether you knew it or not.

I will remember you as a part of my personal resume, of the parties, the after work drinks, and the everyday muddle through papers for work. I know Accounting always had issues with accuracy, and I had to harass you for your paperwork, but I'll never forget the respect you treated me with.

And yes I shed a tear for you and pray that you found Heaven. And if you did, I am happier for it. May God bless your family and be with them in this hard time of letting go. And may comfort embrace them.

I say a prayer tonight.