Wednesday, April 16, 2008

AFF2: The Douchebag Haikus

ZOMG! I found the Douchebag Haikus!!! The 2 morons in row 23 will be no longer be safe from the wrath of my pen. Tucked behind a blank page after 'The Cincinnati Affair' (from July 2006 fame. Actually on the page right after the tally count of KRAAAAZY KAPLANS Billboards), they beckoned me to discover them again! I was happy to say the least. Apparently I overstated how many there actually were - I only made 8. Whatevs. I hope you like reading them as much as I liked creating them on the flight. For an even better effect - read them softly and delicately in the true '5-7-5' haiku way. Enjoy.

The Douchebag Haiku's
3-26-08, 10:00pm

Florida D-bags
On a god-forsaken flight
Please stop your swearing

Sexual Conquests
Appropriate for plane talk?
I don't believe so

Behind me - morons
I now know why girls hate men
They're human garbage. . .

Greetings, douchebag one
You're outlandish and stupid
Fucking kill yourself

Douchebag number two
I hope your wife passes you
A dose of herpes

Towards douchebag one
Burp in my ear once again
My pen meets your eyes

Again with myspace
Ever get off computer?
I'm guessing you don't

Ebay business plan
Sir - you are bound for failure
And large douchebagness

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

AFF2: The Astrology Lady Story

Zodiac Signs. Astrology. Horoscopes. I've never bought into it. You could read ANY horoscope and somehow it could, or would make sense just for you. It never really mattered, or made sense to me. Until this day.
It's Friday, March 28th and Deerfield Beaches' finest have gathered on the waterfront dock bar for 2 for 1 happy hour. The Cove Restaurant & Marina is nestled on the intercoastal waterway, and yachts and large fishing boats scurried around to find space to dock. Derek and I were firmly planted near this outside bar, but were eating dinner inside the open-aired establishment. Derek, being the gracious host he is, let me face this ouside dock bar for a prime people-watching post. The ladies would stream in behind me and he would let me know what color the hot one(s) of the bunch was/were wearing. In return, I would give him a play by play of the goings on behind him. I realize this may or may not sound creepy to you, but if 2 people can't watch the same crowd, commentating the shenanigans behind the others blind spot is necessary. Overall, the scene consisted of an eclectic mix of old sea captains, young brazilian foxes, and metrosexual men who work out too much - just to name a few of the players.

Beautiful women were coming out of the woodwork everywhere. For a midwesterner, the sight of constricting dresses, huge fake boobs, and overly bronzed skin is not seen often. As plentiful as the women were, there was another group that was even more apparent: Bostonian men. Or guys that thought they were from Boston. Even more insane than the amount of east coast dbags, was the amount of hot girl there who were eating them up. It was pathetic, to be honest. One of these gentleman in particular made both of us laugh so hard that our lungs nearly collapsed. I deemed him 'Chinstrap'. Picture, if you will: A tanned individual with short, curly, John-Gotti-esque 'My New Haircut' spiked hair. A skin-tight orange t shirt and jeans. He was accesorized with inch-thick bright WHITE glasses - that had a single lens that wrapped around both eyes. Ahh...ok. The best part of the ensemble though, was the facial hair. A barely visible chinstrap adorned his douchebagness. But this wasn't your avearage chinstrap, oh no. He finely trimmed it from left mid jaw to right mid jaw. NOT ear to ear. It just kinda...stopped at the ends of his jawline. It made no sense, but it was HILARIOUS! Unfortunately, he is not pictured. What is pictured, however, is one of the ugliest (aka best) mullets ever caught on film. And it's on a WOMAN, folks - believe it!

The Cove took over The Milwaukee Zoo as my top spot for people watching after that day. As the onslaught of beautiful lady tigers continued waltzing in, our conversation turned to money. And, how most likely, all these beauties were gold-digging whores, and would never be interested in talking to 2 average looking midwestern boys who don't make $50k together annually. We toasted to 'not having money' and drank away. At that moment, both of our lives would be changed forever.

We were seated next to this elderly couple. They were finishing up their meal at this point and sipping on some cocktails. Overhearing our toast, the woman leaned in and whispered, "Money doesn't buy you happiness". Which, depending on who you ask, is correct. She was your typical older Floridian lady. Wrinkled leathery skin from years in the South Florida sun. Her vibrant yellow and orange floral dress waved in the breeze, and thick-framed spectacles sat atop her nose. What I remember most, was the massive amount of gold jewerly she wore - it was as if she just returned from a Mr. T yard sale. Derek and I continued to discuss what profession we were involved in, and somewhere in the conversation, she asked us our birthdays. I told her, and she went on for 5 minutes about how my 'money line' was 'in the right state/axis/rotation' ? or something. I'm pretty sure I replied with, "Are you sure?", and Derek and I had a good chuckle. She continued to spit out words I had never heard before. Outer space vocabulary, or something. I understood a little. And by a little, I mean zero. Upon her request, I held out my palm, and she pointed to a 'line' that I've ALWAYS had and said something like, 'see how your money line is so close to your bla bla bla something something'. I just nodded and smiled, thinking that this broad was straight from the nut house, even though she was very nice. Thank god she wasn't scary, or I'm guessing I would have bolted mid conversation. Either way, she said I had good fortune, and how now would be a great time to buy that lottery ticket. (*side note - as I write this, It's dawning on me that during this conversation, and the moments that followed, I was taking care of 3 things on my 'things to do before I turn 25' list all at the lottery, talk to strangers, and travel on a budget) I found it funny that during this odd convo, her husband never uttered a word. He just finished up what was left of his meal and gazed out towards the water. I could only guess that he was probably thinking, "Well, here she goes again..." Astrology lady then turned her attention to Derek, whose money line was NOT good, apparently. Derek replied with the, "Yeah, I already know that though." and I laughed. She informed him that his money line was currently in a state of weakness (or something), but would begin to come on strong later - April 10th was the date. "OK then. April 10th - I'll be here. 5:30pm. - waiting for you." Astrology lady smiled and softly said, "I'll leave my husband at home". I laughed so fucking hard I almost fell out of my chair. "I've been doing this a long time. For about 50 years." she added.

With that said, the couple got up and slowly escorted themselves out. Derek and I toasted again to . . . I dunno, an awkward conversation, and drank. But the experience was not over.

Looking in Derek's direction, astrology lady asked, "Do you own a car?"
"Did you drive it here?"
"Ok. You're going to want to check one of the tires...on...the left side of your vehicle. Ok? Just check the tires. One needs a little air."

Then astrology lady left. We both looked at each other with a puzzled, squinty eyed look.

"You know we're gonna have to check the tires before we go home now, right?" I said. Derek agreed. The rest of the evening at the Cove continued to be entertaining. Blondes in hotpants (why aren't they called hotshorts?) kept on schmoozing with middle aged men who wipe their ass with Ben Franklins', Bostonian dudes kept traveling in packs attacking unsuspecting ladies, and rum runners and mojitos flowed like rum runners and mojitos flow. We wanted to stay longer, but we had to pick up Schmill from the airport around 7ish that night. (A little LOLage here - Derek sent him a text around 6 that said something to the likes of 'Jake and I are drunk. We can't pick you up. Hail a cab to get to my house when you touch down. Sorry man." How funny would it have been if he actually read that & took a taxi to his apartment? I mean, you never know with the Schmill)
So we get to the mazda 3 and head off to the airport - forgetting the check the tire. 3 minutes go by, and we're still in the residential area of downtown Deerfield Beach when I yell, "Oh shit - we gotta check that tire!", in a joking manner. Derek pulls over to the side of the road willingly, and we both got out gawked at the left side of the car.

"No. . . fucking . . . way!" - Derek and I, in unison.

I started jumping around throwing punches at the air and screaming into the atmosphere as Derek put his hands on his head in utter shock and started laughing.

The left, front tire had visibly less air than the left back tire.

Actually, the left front tire had visibly less air than EVERY other tire on the car. It wasn't just a little bit lower. It was NOTICEABLY lower. Had it been my car, I would not have driven on it without putting more air into it. Now, please be aware that the old astrology lady was sitting next to us in the restaurant BEFORE we got there - and no - she didn't see us pull up (we parked a ways away), so she could not have walked her 90 year old ass out there and let some air out of it. Needless to say, I was slightly freaked out. Derek, although, exhibited his cool & collected self and popped his trunk to reveal an emergency road kit. Complete with radio, flashlight, tire pressure monitor, and, among many others - a small tire inflation nozzle. Which was really quite neat - except it had no juice left in it. Somewhat frustrated now, Derek goes to me, "The first gas station we see - we're stopping. I'm putting air in this tire and you're buying a lottery ticket." And it was done. We drove a bit and stopped at the first Mobil station. As Derek inflated his tire, I went inside and bought one $1 Florida Lotto ticket. Thoughts of what exactly I would buy with my winning ticket entered my head. (And that's where they would stay. Days later, I checked the ticket numbers in the newspaper - ZERO. None, zip, nada were correct.) After picking up Schmill from the airport, we went out in downtown Ft. Lauderdale. But that's another story. This tale is about an elderly Floridian woman with a strange, uncanny act to guess something right. And although I still don't believe in the zodiac calendar or psychic abilities, I do have to admit that it was a slightly freaky; yet superb way to begin a great vacation week.

Follow up: As I'm now just getting around to writing about my vacation three weeks ago, I called Derek during lunch today to see if he actually did go back to the Cove. He did not, and I was saddened. BUT - on that Monday, April 10th, he did go to Dania Beach to watch Jai Alai (which will be discussed in a future AFF2 post). Jai Alai is a game where crazy Spaniards meet in a huge enclosed court and throw a cue ball 150miles an hour with a straw basket attached to their right hand. It's an incredible spectacle. You can bet on which Jai Alai teams or players will win per match - we won $0 during the 8 or 9 matches we watched. But Derek, on this fateful Monday, won $30 crisp American dollars. Looks as if Derek's money line might be on the upswing after all. Till next time, Astrology lady...till next time.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

AFF2: The Airport Chronicles


(The following was written while I was waiting for my flight at the Milwaukee and Minneapolis airports, respectively)

Wed, March 26th, 3:20pm @ MKE

They say one of the best spots to meet single people is at an airport. Who's 'they' though? I dunno, I read it somewhere. This post has nothing to do with meeting a girl, I just wanted to throw that little ditty out there. Either way, I just paid $10 for a gin & tonic. I've never drank at the airport bar before. I probably won't again. The bartender gave me a double beefeater and tonic, and to be honest - I didn't really want a double. Halfway through my drink, a girl my age, chatting away on her cell, ordered a drink next to me. "Hold on", she said, looking in my direction. "Can you drink before you fly?" I started laughing. I reply, "Uh, that's what I'm doing" and held my hand to my drink like I was Vanna White turning an imaginary letter. She chuckled, and went back to talking away. I hope I didn't come off as an asshole - but I thought the previous question was common knowledge? I was early for my flight, so after the 1 drink I settled down in the waiting area. Some 45 minutes later, the previous girl is now standing nearby me again. She looks like she's freaking out inside. "I've never flown before" she tells me. "But I got some beer in me, so it's smooth sailing now!" I guess? Nothin like some sweet old sudsy dudsy sloshin around during turbulence. She was nice, but kinda wierd.

Wed, March 26th, 6:15pm @ Minnehopelessness

6 billion people on Earth, right? It truly is a small world. This is a true story...
...sitting next to me in the bar @ Minneapplesauce/St. Paul International airport is a sweet 50 year old lady. We start to chat it up - and the similarities start to become eerie. She spent 8 years living in La Crosse, WI - aka my favorite college town, and where my parents originally met. We talking about our travels and where we've lived, and she tells me she currently lives in Colorado Springs, to which I reply, "Nice. I've never been west of Kansas." She chimes in, "Oh, I lived in Hays, Kansas". Get outta here lady! To those of you who don't know (and I pray you don't), Hays, KS is in the middle of fucking nowhere. Nothing is within 100 miles of this place. It's a city in the middle of a dry, brown, desert full of oil rigs. No one should want to wind up there. Seriously. Oddly enough, my aunt/uncle/cousins currently live there, and my grandma (from Attempting Floridian Fame Vol I) lived there for 1/2 a decade. Also, the city name is basically my last name. Wow. I continue drinking my $10 (ouch again) 20 oz Leine's Red and the gentlemen directly to my right leans over and goes, "So you live in Madison, eh? I own the Argus building". WTF, this is nuts. I work at the Great Dane downtown - and you can clearly see the Argus bar & building from that location. It get's creepier - his moustached friend next to him, adorned in flannel attire also has something to say. "You said you were from Racine, right?" I nod yes. "I grew up there".

Am I on candid fucking camera?

This is happening in the Minneapolis airport. Honestly, what the hell is going on here.

As if it couldn't get any wierder, it turns out this guy lived ONE BLOCK away from my childhood residence. He described the boulevard I lived on perfectly. So, let's recap. The dude-who-owns the Argus' friend grew up right behind me 30 years ago. Got it. Dude-who-owns the Argus continues - "I own the chamber building above Pizza Extreme (E. Wash for you Madisonians) too. Did you say you moved from Racine to Waterford?" I say yes, and wonder why, and how long, these 2 were eavesdropping on my other convo. The next part completes the creepiness circle. He tells me of a renter of his who used to smoke pot with him on a daily basis. After a night of no doubt black-out-drunkeness, this renter of his climbed on the roof of his apartment and FELL THROUGH the skylight of the afforementioned building. I laugh my ass off and he says, "He's been a teacher at Waterford High School for 15 years now. His name is Mike".

It wasn't Harmeling, and I couldn't think of another last name for the life of me. At any rate, this shit is amazing. Lastly, guy tells me also owns the Madison Metropolitan. If you haven't been keeping up on current events the Metropolitan is in foreclosure. There were numerous stories about it in the WI State Journal. This guy owes millions. OWES MILLIONS. He blamed it on the bank and then on the Willy St. Co-op for not helping him out or something. He told me he was flying to Ft. Lauderdale for a tradeshow on wood flooring. Hmmm. Guy- (never actually got either of the 2 men's names) instead of a flooring conference - perhaps you should go to a 'real estate for dumbasses' or 'managing your finances correctly' seminar. Wow. It really is a small world. I got on my plane really, really creeped out. < News Story on Metropolitan's foreclosure


Aboard the Minneapolis flight, 2 douchebags in their mid twenties were behind me talking about grotesque things, and other musings that should not be talked about at a high volume, which they currently are doing. I knew it was going to be a long flight immediately after they sat down:
Dbag1- "I get the window seat eh"
Dbag2-"Ugh...the middle"
Dbag1- "Haha - you're gonna have to sit next to the FAT lady! hahah!"
[10 second pause]
Gentleman1- "I'm not fat. And I'm no lady."

5 minutes later he asked the stuartist if he could move, and she promptly reseated him. I should have asked as well. The next 4 hours were filled with ramblings on women, ebay, video games, std's, marriage, the army, and more. As I sat by myself, I actually considered turning around and asking them, "Have either of you ever been called a douchebag before?" Had they said yes, I would have said nothing, and turned around. Had they said no, I would have simply stated "You're both douchebags" and turned around. I would never be able to actually do that, but it felt somewhat liberating to think about it. The worst part of this story is, for a good hour, I wrote what I called 'The Douchebag Haikus'. It was a good 12-15 part barrage of Haikus on what these 2 morons were talking about. They were really good - they even made me crack up at myself. Unfortunately, whatever I wrote them on - I no longer have. It makes me really sad, cuz I know you would have liked them. Damn me for losing that piece of paper. I might never forgive myself.

What I still DO have, is a few noteable quotes from the duo that I scribbled whilst waiting to fly. Keep in mind they are spewing this trash at an unreasonable volume. Keep in mind this flight has children behind them, and plenty of other strangers strewn next to them on this evening flight.

Dbag1- "I had a massive hard-on, and she got on top of me, and I was like 'this is a bad idea in the pooooo-ooool' ".

Dbag1- "I'm giving birth to a beautiful herpe-infested baby boy". About a call from a hook up on the Vans Warped Tour in a dream he had.

Dbag2- "What'd you say to her?"
Dbag1- "Well, I was hard on her. I called her a bitch and a cunt".
Dbag2- "Hmm. I talk to my wife like that every night."
Dbag1- "But after that fight, we've been better than ever".
Dbag2- "You get a make-up blowjob?"
Dbag1- "Maybe I got a make-up hug, if that..."

Dbag1- "You ever get head from a chick....and like.....just wanna pull her head off and do it yourself"?

Not gonna lie, that one made me laugh a bit. But the smile went away fast, cuz I remembered how douchebaggy they had been thus far. All of the above was said BEFORE WE EVEN TOOK OFF. 2 hours into the flight, Dbag1 talks about how Wisconsin girls have outdrank him. Doesn't surprise me. My guess is a 3 year old in a sandbox could outdrink that homo. 3 hours in, I overhear that he's from Stevens Point. Great. Until this point I was hoping he was from Florida, or down south, or somewhere else - ANYWHERE but Wisco. Wrong. For the record, Dbag1 was by far the douchier of the douchebags. Anyways, the topic switched to Ebay for a good 30 minutes. I forget what was said, but the business tactics of Dbag2 were stunningly shitty. Again, I'm quite upset at myself for losing that haiku document. It would have been some award winning poetry right there.


Nothing too exciting to report here. My flight left Ft. Lauderdale a bit after 4pm on April 2nd. I was so incredibly hungover from 6 days of drinking that my body basically shut down that day. I had a massive heat rash on my chest and arms from dehydration & the sun. The previous night consisted of patron & pitchers, so my mouth - even after numerous brushings - tasted like a garbage disposal. Out of my element completely, I actually pooped at the airport. Defecated in an airport bathroom. Yucks. Nauceous for about 2 hours pre-flight, I struggled not to yak at every moment. I'm telling you - it was a miracle I didn't throw up between the hours of 10am & 6pm that day. A miracle.
The flight from Ft. Lauderdale to Memphis was fine, minus my ability to even think a complete thought. Some large spanish family had a kid up front who kept screaming. It was a happy scream though, so it was ok for awhile. And when I say 'awhile', I mean 'never.' Eventually the stuartist bitched at the family for not even paying attention to the little guy or even bothering to shut him up. It was really wierd. If I had a kid who was being loud on a plane, I would probably tell it to stop. "Don't yell" - I would say.
2 hour layover in Memphis. What a shitty airport that was. For how busy it was, they had about 20 chairs to wait in. I found this unacceptable. Did you know that Memphis is the #1 cargo carrying airport in the world? Number 2 was Paris, France. Apparently the time zones and the fact that Memphis is centrally located (kinda?) is what makes it such a popular destination. You could look it up, but I think 11 million packages go through that airport every day. Or is that too much? I don't really recall - I was still not functioning very well so the fact that I could actually read words at all was comforting enough. Another large family was hustling and bustling a few yards away. The father had a WI tee on. There were 5 very small children crying, eating, yelling, and doing other kid things. He walked by me numerous times muttering 'fuck' under his breath. I didn't really feel bad for him though, as it's his fault for goin to town without a hat on, ya know? The youngest child couldn't have been more than a year old. She could talk, but barely. A lot of that incoherent stuff that kids 'say' at that age.
Fast forward to the plane. We're waiting to lift off, and we're a few planes in line. It really wasn't all that funny - but it made me laugh my ass off: No more than 5 minutes in, the previously mentioned young child started screaming. Crying screaming. Through the garbled yelling, I could make out only one phrase. "IIII WAANT MY DA-DDYYYY" This was repeated about 100 times, no joke. I'm laughing in my seat, and the guy next to me thinks I'm nuts. The only real reason I was laughing so hard was the fact that a) The mother was the only one with her and b) IT WAS IN FIRST CLASS!!! All the hoity toity bastards & bastardesses (just made that one up now, folks) were scowling at the helpless mother. They paid all that extra money to get bigger seats, amazing service, free drinks - only to have this dumb kid SCREAM at the top of her lungs in search for her daaaaadddyyyy for 15 minutes. 15 solid minutes of uncontrollable crying. I laughed really hard.
My flight touched down in (cold) Milwaukee around 9:30.

My flights to Milwaukee were heaven compared to what Schmill went through. The atrocities that he experienced on his return trip were enough to push any human to their limit. Delays. Cancellations. Emus. Just kidding. But he was so frustrated during and after the ordeal, that I told him he should write about it. So he did. The following is directly from the Schmill himself, sent to me:

While returning from a recent trip to Florida I had the opportunity to witness very interesting traits among fellow Americans. I also got to experience corporate greed at its finest. My US Airways flight back to Milwaukee from Charlotte was severely delayed and we had finally gotten on to the tarmac to take off. We began the acceleration off the runway but never left the ground. The frustration among all passengers immediately rose. Once back at the terminal we learned the door sensors alerted it wasn’t shut. An hour later, we learned the flight was cancelled. This is where it became interesting. People began scrambling to butt in line to talk with the ticketing agent, Stephanie. She was frantically trying to get alternate flight arrangements from her head office yet the questions/concerns/complaints kept on coming to her. Some passengers made their calls to get alternate flights. One amazing person actually found an alternate flight to Milwaukee and gave the reservation up to a mother travelling with her newborn child; one of the nicest things I’ve seen in awhile. Poor Stephanie was running out of same day flights and reported that arrangements were being made to send us home the next day. People were not happy and some even banded together to get back to Milwaukee. A group of 5 strangers took an alternate flight to St. Louis and bided to drive the 6 hours to Milwaukee. I on the other hand decided to take the next day flight. After a shitty nights’ sleep, I was off to Philadelphia to catch a connecting flight on Midwest back home (I was looking forward to the cookie). However, after a 3 hour layover and then checking in at the Midwest ticket counter, they said US Airways had reserved my flight but hadn’t sent over my ticket. Not happy. I trek over to another terminal to find a US Airways agent. They first off had no idea what I was talking about and then once they found my information, instead of sending the ticket over and sending me on my initial flight, they booked me on a delayed US Airways flight 6 hours later. Pissed off, I took my 10 dollars of meal vouchers “for the inconvenience” and wasted my Saturday at the Philadelphia airport. Needless to say, it was a shitty way to end a vacation; I finally made it back to Milwaukee and shall choose US Airways as a last resort from now on.

Airports and airplanes are crazy. The end.

Attempting Floridian Fame Vol II : The Overview

Hello internet people. As you already know, it's been awhile. This is largely due to being busy at work before and after taking a vacation. To where, you say? Look at the title! It was time again to visit the land of South Florida for beaches, broads, and beer. March 26th through April 2nd consisted of basking in the sun and doing a lot of drinking. A huge thank you goes out to 'Mr. S' for the accomodations and chauffering Schmill and I around. The next few posts will be dedicated to the trip, and start with the title 'AFF2'. I did bring my journal again this year, but was too drunk/hungover to write in it very much. These posts will be from the memory of Schmill and I. Thank you for reading. Let's attempt Floridian fame...

(A pregnant man-tourist takes a touristy picture - looped of course...)