Friday, January 28, 2011

The Food Chain around our House

I want to tell you a story of how a food chain forms. The food chain might not want that story told, but it isn't its place to tell us what to say. That's right food chain, you just going on linking things together and leave the writing to me.

Food chains are common amongst people living within one life click from a resolved state. They are a species all their own. Born unresolved, food chains seek out people seeking out mini-moments of clarity in which life preceding this moment is labeled rubbish, and what is to follow is considered wholly unrelated to what came before. What once was found is now lost, or thrown out with the weekly recycling. Food chains are parasites that cause their hosts to rename themselves even as they remain themselves even as they redefine themselves.


Food chains are irrational cyclists, riding stationary bikes in basements and operating motorcycles on misinformation highways. They like to wrap their bodies in pillows of self-delusion while forgetting to protect their helmets by using their heads. Right now there is a food chain viced tightly around my house.

It peeks in the windows, making sure that we are saying the right things and acting the right actions. It grows exponentially as bodies enter the room, and is most vulnerable when there is only one, alone. Where people have made promises to each other, food chains flourish.  It’s as if each person owns a link. Some were forged with strong resolve and others out of necessity, but all exist.

Whereas natural food chains have a direction – up, down, and “get in my mouth, because I’m a sideways shark” – artificially formed chains exist in a circle. A circle presents certain weaknesses, but one of its main strengths is that it doesn’t move without consensus or at least lack of resistance to the leading opinion.


Somehow, thankfully, my house inherited a benign food chain. Just by looking each other in the eye and saying “I want my link to touch your link” we have accomplished something: momentum. And, even though it is just a derivative of our goal, which is excellence in fitness, it is entirely more powerful. Fitness is a nebulous finish line, always floating forward into the distance. But momentum is fun, it is out of control, and it is flexible. Most importantly, it is social, so I don’t mind ducking under the food chain as I leave the house every morning and come home at night. As far as I’m concerned, it is welcome to hangout for as long as it wants.

Conversations to Judge By:
I went to Whole Foods today. Check out this grocery list.
Oh, you guys went shopping? I’ll cook!
Somebody’s cooking? Guess I’ll go for a quick run and think about what we can eat tomorrow.
I saw a guy eating a tomorrow sandwich at the gym today. He was biting his tongue, benching way more than the bar, and thinking about how much better he will look tomorrow.

Hey Trevor, are you a runner?
Uh, I don’t ever really walk anywhere.
You wok like a Chinese saucepan.
That was some excellent swai sauce.
And so on and so forth, culminating in a three-day period in which "swai" was a buzzword and synonymous with everything dirty. As a house, we've lost 15 pounds, and that is with one of the four of us trying to gain weight. If you are part of a malignant food chain, rust as much as you can, get some chain cutters, and start cutting yourself. Don't worry, it will only hurt for a few weeks.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

The Year is Coming!

What the hell happened to 2010? I remember 2010 like it was just the other day – drafting 100 unique New Year’s texts to everyone in my phone for disbursal come 2009’s midnight. The resulting cascade of responses to my texts did wonders in kicking off last year.

Now it’s 20!! and it’s time to figure out where I mucked up last year, what I can't learn from it, and by the way, who can I contact to get a drink in this damn place?

Don’t Get Short with Me!
After deciding I wanted to get a poem published, I went online to play the role of predator. On the hunt for a place to display my writing, I went to Craigslist to take advantage of somebody, because that’s what Craigslist was created for. I quickly found a community that not only liked my poem but paid to use it. Very nice, I thought, I should do this more often. I then proceeded to add nothing more to the realm of poetry for the rest of the year.

Instead, I kept a lazy eye on the “Writing gigs” part of Craigslist, and was able to land a stint making fun of Dead Celebrities and their ridiculous propensity to aggrandize their real estate needs and overshoot the idea of “want”. That landed me some more scratch/cashflow, bringing the year’s total to $200. I am hoping to multiply that tenfold in 20!!. I've already submitted a short story for a national competition that will equal that tenfold goal if it slips through the cracks into first place. Keep your panties crossed.

Soccer and Volleyball skills
I’ve got ‘em, and you can’t have ‘em. I set a goal with Zhang it! for our team of two to become the best sand volleyball doubles team in our county. While we definitely aren’t – we had a pretty paltry record in the men’s summer league – we are well respected on the circuit as up-and-coming, piss-and-vinegar types. When Zhang it! steps onto the court, the opponents feel slow and the sand shivers. When I step onto the court, Zhang it! feels slow, my thighs quiver, and the Sun hits the snooze button.

Zhang it!: Pre-game Volleyball Warmup

I play a lot of soccer on some very good teams. This is not necessarily because I play at an elite level, but because 6-pack (Michigan Mike) is an elite goalie and I am his +1. Because I am playing with good people against great people, I have gotten much better quite quickly and fancy myself a defensive presence. What that means is up to interpretation.

Act a Fool
I helped write and then acted in a short film that represented Cisco’s North Carolina campus in a company-wide film competition for my organization (Information Technology.) We created four versions, from vanilla to X-rated, and were able to borrow the campus film studio to record as if we were important. It was quite an experience to see myself onscreen when they showed the video to our campus, especially since afterword people came up to me squinting in what I took as both diss and approval. While I’m not yet the face of Cisco, I’m definitely some lesser glanced at body part.

“Your body is speaking Spanish to me”
I lackadaisically pursued body language knowledge this last year. I took a training course at work on Communication that had a section on non-verbals and I am reading a collection of words published by a former FBI body language expert. I’ve made prolonged eye contact with several people throughout the year, but the jury is still out on how badly I creeped them out. I’ve discovered the easiest way to instantly offend someone is to tell them they have the body language of a walking stick.


You know what you are? A Homowner
Being 6-pack’s +1 has escalated my emasculation to the point of no return. Granted, when buying a house with another male, questions are sure to arise. What are your intentions with this man? Where do you get off? Who’s your interior decorator? Here’s how we answered those questions: Our intentions are intentional, we would like to buy this pool and if the house comes with it… so be it. We get off most days between 5 and 6 PM Eastern, when we take the bus we get off whenever the bus driver isn’t looking, and when we engage in interstellar spaceflight we get off when the aliens tell us to get off. And our interior decoration is determined by Science with the undying support of our parent’s favorite jeans.


We made it through the entire house purchase process without any colorful commentary. Then, when we got a check from the old homeowners to fix a few small issues, they made the check out to 6-pack and wife: Wesley King. 2010 was the year of the homowner and the year my gender was tossed into a blender and Frapp├ęd like my ankles when I wear stilettos. 

I will next be posting my goals for 20!!, one of which is to help others complete theirs, so holla at me if you want my support!