I Think Maybe I Died…

I’ve been on text-mute with a few friends today.  Not too alarming for two of them, but The Silver Fox rounds out the trio and that guy texts like the lovechild of a 14 year old girl and Pavlov’s dog.

Naturally, I assumed I was dead.  It was the only logical explanation.

And what a place my purgatory is…somewhere I can text all of the people I care about and then never get a response.  Yikes.

spiralMy mind being the wonderful place it is, I just let that theory amuse me while I went a bought a lottery ticket and got coffee.

Alone again, naturally.

So, if I was dead, here’s a few scenarios that would support that I was living a day in the afterlife.


My new job.  I love it, lumps and all.  My boss described it to me as Retail Heaven.  True story.  I have a three day weekend for Thanksgiving, I’m off Thursday – even though the airport is open and I have staff working – Friday and Saturday.  I go back to work Sunday.  NBD.

Myrtle has been super sweet and cuddly since I returned from conference.  No blood has been spilled.

I was walking through the park this morning and not one, but two people gave me a little cruise.  The first from the path on the other side of the park, so I assumed he had poor vision.  But the second walked right by me and gave me a cute lil wink as he passed.

Obviously, dead.

I had Chipotle for dinner last night and woke up feeling skinny.

I checked my PO Box on my little morning walkabout, it had been two weeks.  No bills.


icebergMy new job got some props here, too.  But it just really ended up reinforcing how awesome my new gig actually is.  You all know – if you know me – how much I love people who just drift a-directionally as they move.  Now, picture people in an airport.  None of those fuckers know where the hell they are going.  I do, obviously.  I also have perfect situational awareness, so I’m moving urgently through my route from store to store, concourse to concourse, and I have these people cum icebergs drifting along my path without a damn care in the world.  Normally, that would annoy the hell out of me, but not in this instance.  I just pump the brakes, mentally tapping my foot until they drift clear of my path, unless they are one of those stationary icebergs, standing still in the middle of a walkway with their bags strewn all around their ankles and the steel plate in their forehead pulled forcefully down toward their clearly magnetized phone.

A third guy checked me out as I passed my gym on my way to get coffee.  He was heading in and I could tell he wanted to chat me up by the way his mouth curled up at the corners and how he tracked me as I walked away from him.  Why would this be hell?  It was The Biscuit.

For all the bitching I do at The Fox about how he prioritizes his phone over the people in his immediate audience, he finally was able to resist the urge to check or respond to his phone notifications for several hours this morning.  AKA:  he was ignoring my texts.  Mine!

The nerve.

So, I guess that I survived.

Maybe it was just a coma.

I’m off mute now, at any rate.

Which reminds me, I owe my mom a phone call…my phone actually died yesterday while I was talking to her.  Karma taught me a little lesson in what that feels like this morning.

Anyway, as I think back on my morning derp thoughts, I realize that many of them overlap.  Just goes to show that perspective is a good thing.  With the right point of view and attitude, you can make anything you want of a situation, good or bad.  While I champion my Early Onset Grumpiness, I definitely want to enjoy that facet of my personality and not become one of those actual grumpy old men who are seemingly happy being unhappy.


I Think Maybe I Died…

The Ongoing Saga of EOG

I am happy to report that this week has been a very successful return to a consistent exercise regimen.  Perhaps slightly excessive, but within reason.  Two days with Lifting/Cardio combinations.  Two days of Spin with the Filipina Fox at Muv, where she instructs, and one stand-alone Cardio sesh at 24.

Which is where this Early Onset Grumpiness tale begins.

I’ve just returned and had a little post-cardio cottage cheese.  Such a disgusting food, but such an easy source of protein.

Hush, Diezel.

Also, I stink.  But fear showering before putting my story down will result in another day of blog-silence.  After the social lovefest I received on Facebook yesterday…well, I just don’t want to be quiet today.

Also, Myrtle is keeping her distance versus trying her normal keyboard dance while I try and type.  I’m attributing that to my malodorousness.

I was heading out to run a couple of errand relative to the sale of my condo up in Seattle, so I was dressed in my basic bro tee-shirt and jeans attire with a backpack containing my gym clothes.  Now, there’s a story in and of itself that ends with me sending a six page fax to my realtor.

It was $12.45.

I handed over three $1 bills and got a puzzled look for my effort.

When the clerk re-iterated the total, I calmly replied with one of my grandfather’s chestnuts, “Jesus Christ!  I wanted to send a fax, not buy the whole place!”

She laughed and tried to tell me that long distance was expensive.  I countered with the fact that she was obviously right…cell phone carriers giving their long distance service away in unlimited quantities and all these days.

I don’t think she was as amused as I had intended.  Maybe she was.  Maybe I was a dick.

Naturally, once I arrived at the gym I realized that I had forgotten not only my earbuds but also my water bottle, I was primed for the milking that buying water at the gym is.  The picture below has the last bottle of water I bought at the gym, a 24 ounce bottle of water for $2.

Pretty crazy.

And obviously not worth it…since drinking it has not made me *smart* enough to remember to pack my damned water bottle for the gym in the first place.

The bottle on the right in the picture is the bottle I bought today after realizing that the gym has changed its water assortment since last week when I forgot last.  Yes, I know you aren’t really supposed to use water bottles like this over again.  I take reasonable precautions, though.  Like not expecting to live for freaking ever.

Back to the great Water Fiasco of 2016…it was $3.50 for 34 ounces.

Three goddamned fifty.  For water.  For real.

Of course, I didn’t want to trot out the same pilfered Chrisism twice in 20 minutes, so I couldn’t respond in the same manner that I had in the Fax Fiasco.  Instead, I glumly stated that “When I was a kid, this stuff was free!” which prompted what I suspect was a genuine giggle from the pretty young lady behind the counter.

At least my grumpy charm was back in working condition.

Seriously, though…Smart Water was $.08/ounce last time I bought it at the gym.  This Propel business – which I have never even heard of – is $.11/ounce.  Who do they think they are?!?

What I knew for sure was that I was definitely going to suffer through what this gym calls music while I worked out versus even looking at new earbuds.

They’d probably be $75.

Now, in other news…after the aforementioned Facebook lovefest last night, I really intended to get on the old laptop and polish up an old draft.  Somehow, I Hemingway-ed myself out of that with a nice bottle of red and some Netflix instead.  I don’t know how he did it.  But, apparently, my writing and creative proficiencies are not anywhere near Papa’s level yet, so this is what we get today.

On the upshot, my Friday night plans might have just washed out <gasp!>.  Maybe I will have some time this evening to Smith around some words.

What?  That was a legitimate gasp…my plans were with friends, not Biscuits.

The Ongoing Saga of EOG

The Snapchat Relationship

I’m sure most of my regular friends are tired of me using them to polish this theory up…and the truth is, by the time I get around to considering this concept completed, Snapchat will be so 30 seconds ago.  So, putting up then shutting up.  On this topic, anyway.  Maybe it’s another brilliant observation.  Maybe it’s a witty Chrisism.  Maybe it’s bullshit.

I bet more of my actual friends – that’s “friends” in contrast to “acquaintances” – are well past being anything other than familiar with Snapchat.  It’s an app that looks like the result of a one-night stand between Facebook and Instagram.  A cautionary tale come to life, in my opinion, of the way drinking and smoking during pregnancy are bad for your child.  The best part about Snapchat?  If you don’t know about it or don’t use it, this will probably be the last time you need to think about it in any capacity other than as a point of reference for someone’s horribly short attention span.

Additionally, I’ve heard techy-geeky types tell me that no one over thirty knows how to use it.  Or understands it.

Naturally, I found a 20-something in a bar to explain it to me.  It’s like they grow on trees, falling off before completely ripe, perhaps…still, there they are.

Here’s how it works.

You have your Snapchat account.  On your account, you can tell “Your Story” with pictures of what you are doing or things you find photographable throughout your day-to-day existence.  Of course, there are “followers”.  These may be real friends and acquaintances.  They may be some old guy you met in a bar and chatted with for a beer or two.  <— Totally just using that as a point of reference, I do not have a Snapchat profile.  People can also just elect to follow you, there seems to be no approval process past someone deciding you are imminently followable.  For now.

Sounds ok, so far, right?  At this point, I am quite distressed by the concept of losing control of my “friends” list.  Not to worry, I am told.  Here’s why.  Here’s where it also completely fucks up society, in my opinion:

You control who sees what you post.  You can share your posts with everyone by using the “Your Story” option.

Sidebar:  For the briefest of credibility destroying moments, I worried that “Your Story” was actually called “My Story”, which devolved into whether or not I was confusing Snapchat nomenclature with Brandi Carlile song titles and then rebounded into comfortable “I don’t care” territory.

Let me get back on track…you control who sees what you post.  Share it on “Your Story” and all of your followers see it.  Pretty normal.  I give this guy some raised eybrows, demonstrating my “So what the hell is the allure?” stance at the demonstration of this miraculous and allegedly confusing piece of technology that is purportedly unsuitable for folks in their fourth decade of existence and he says, “No, no…this is where it gets fun!” Apparently, you can edit your pictures with filters (big deal), put text into them or even draw on them.  Ok, that’s a little more interesting.

Then he shows me how that’s done.  Apparently, there’s a pen icon.  It’s quite confusing and by all accounts, this is where the thirty-plus crowd loses their shit with Snapchat.  He’s showing me how easy it is.  I’m laughing because he keeps fucking up whilst demonstrating this ease of use.  I almost fall off my barstool when he uses misspelled words and poor grammar with zero irony.  But I don’t, because I am a professional.  I tell him that I see how easy it is to use, obviously.  He takes a pic of me and writes something rude about me on it.

Immortalized on his story.  Can History be far behind?  Methinks, yes.

So that’s all pretty normal.  I’m not seeing what all the fuss is about, this app seems lame.  I’m thinking it’s really just for stupid kids and that it’s UI isn’t that sophisticated or intuitive, which is why the older users did not adopt it.  It’s cave drawings compared to other social media.  Still not sure why it’s developed this mystique standing.

Hubbub factor:  0

Now for the ab-so-fucking-lute-ly abnormal application of this app.  ADHD readers, take a seat.  Control-freak readers, stand aside.  This makes me hate what people have allowed themselves to become.  I want to meet the people who decided this was a good idea and swing a cactus at their privates.

You decide how long things are viewable.  Posting a video or pic?  Great.  How long can people look at it once they open it?  You get to decide.  There’s a countdown clock.  6 seconds seems to be this guy’s favorite setting.

You also get to select who can see it.  It doesn’t have to be – nor does this guy seem to favor – posted for every one to see.  You can select specific people to share it with.

Now, this seems like a place to protect your potential political future.  Viewable for 6 seconds or some other randomly short time frame?  It’s as if the permission to share pics and videos that would make your mother cringe is built in.  That’s not long enough to masturbate but also not long enough to decide it’s screen shot worthy.  You’re protected.  Ish.  I didn’t ask if you could limit the number of times someone could view your shared post.

All I ever wanted in life are friends that control my thoughts and experiences.  Yay, Snapchat.


I hate this app.

This app is Nazi Germany.

It’s burning banned books.

It’s Jesse Helms.

Here’s why…people I have met who are users actually adopt some pretty unhealthy behaviors toward others.  I’ll tell you about it in The Ginge, he’s a great example, if I ever post is.  But I thrive as an individual when I’m surrounded by people who increase my happiness and enable my freedom to be my true self.  People that cohabit my safe place without destroying it.

Here’s how I’ve seen these Snapchat behaviors manifest – and this is hardly Snapchat’s sole responsibility, but along with other apps like Grindr, Scruff, OKStoopid, Tinder and their ilk we have created a “swipe” culture.  That culture makes people and the potential relationships disposable, unconsciously telling the user that there is another one just a finger-swipe away.

I want to meet someone who’s run out of swipes.  He’s gonna need a hug.  Or she.  Equality, yo.

Snapchatty people that I meet/date tend to move fast and overshare intimate details of their lives.  To me, this was disarming.  When I was young and someone opened up to me like that on a date, I took it as a good sign.  They’re into me.  This is going somewhere.

Dinner.  Bam.

Sex.  Woo!

Cuddling.  Yaaas.

Pillow Talk.  Do I have a spare toothbrush?

Morning Sex.  Ugh. How long do I have to keep this up?

Day Texting.

Meeting Friends.  Intense.

Lathering.  Rinsing.  Repeating.

Oh, there’s more sex in there, too.

This goes for about a week, if I’ve been lucky.  Three days – a weekend – unsurprisingly more the norm.  Then it’s over.  It’s like a summer romance without the benefit of the exotic location.  Unless you’re not from the town I live in, but that’s a whole other phenomenon.

Once the proscribed time elapses, it’s over.  You can’t see it anymore.  All that filtered and colored upon over-shared intimacy is gone and you’re suddenly friend-zoned.  With benefits, of course.

Well, having never gotten into the habit of screwing my friends – weren’t you afraid I was going to say “fucking”? – this has zero appeal to me.  People don’t seem to know what to do with you after the afforded vulnerability phase.  “Can we pretend it didn’t happen?  Because I like you and want to keep sexing with you, but I don’t know how to relate to people.”  That would be a refreshing bit of self-awareness from this generation.  And thanks for the friend-zone, but my friends don’t treat me like that.  They treat me like an equal.  I don’t even have to make them.  They just do it, because that’s NORMAL!  I’m not using caps to scream, I just can’t figure out how to italicize something on WordPress.  Which is why I need a twenty-something year old.

They don’t even know that they don’t know that they should know how to be a friend/boyfriend/girlfriend/whathaveyou.

I miss one-night stands.

In my day, it was all about “You’re cute, you’ll do.”  Maybe it was just me.  And, I admit that I’m the nicest prick you’ll likely ever encounter, but I would get hit on by guys and I would tell them, “Sure, but I’ll probably never call you or speak to you again because we aren’t friends.”  If they took it as a challenge, I liked them.  If they got more turned on, I got more turned off.  There were two of those types that I went home with anyway.  Huge mistakes.  Others met me when I was in the mood to date and I told them that, too…but no promises.  I communicated what I was looking for.  With this Snapchat Relationship, the only thing that’s missing is a countdown clock.  Actually, a countdown clock would make this behavior excusable.  Is there an app for that?

The psychology behind the appeal of this app and the adoption of the behaviors it enables has got to be incredible to observe.

I’m moving into observation mode, versus unwitting participant.  Ok, I may stray into knowing participant from time to time, but I’ll ruin it by calling it out to the Snapchat Dater.

Think about it, though.  It’s a cultural shift from the former norms of human interaction to the adoption of the “stranger on a plane” interaction.  Daily.  With potentially everyone.

If I’m hooking up with someone to meet a biological imperative, I don’t feel great about that, but I know it and they know it.  Once they start telling me that they are adopted or survived a hostage situation or even where they were when Challenger exploded – like I date anyone who remembers THAT, lol – I have to stop and lay out the rules.  If you’re gonna share, you gotta stick around, cuz sharing is caring.  If you aren’t up for that…wait, how did I get tricked into cuddling with you after sex?  Goddamnit!  That’s also reserved for boyfriends.

Can I invent the concept of “Tough Hook-Ups”?  Yeah, I’ll help you out with your physical need for an hour or two, but if you need help meeting your emotional needs – cuddling, sharing, the like – you need to know how to be someone’s boyfriend or pay a therapist.

Snapchat.  I understand it.  I completely see the socially retarded allure.  I completely fail to see the human allure.

Because:  grumpy, old man am I.  But follow me anyway!

The Snapchat Relationship

The Biscuit

Ok, the reality of living in our modern-day world really is that there is an app for everything.

Want to know where to avoid speed traps?  Done!  Meet Waze.

Want to NOT cook?  Done!  Take your pick of the Take-Out apps out there:  Grubhub, Eat24, yada-yada-yada.

Speaking of yada-yada-yada…want to get done?  Done!  Scruff, Grindr, Daddyhunt, Radar, et al have the boys who like boys covered.  I understand there’s even an app or two for the straight folk and girls who like girls out there, so anyone can – almost literally – get anything they want through an app.

Check out more potentially nifty apps here:  10 apps that will make your life infinitely easier.

But can they?  Are we getting what we want or what’s good for us as a people with these modern conveniences?  Do they make our lives infinitely easier or better?  Look how Betty Crocker and TV Dinners turned out for us.  Seemed like good ideas at the time.

So, in an entry titled “The Biscuit”, surely I’m going to talk about some of the food options mentioned above and how they impact our culture, right?  Wrong.  I decided that – despite my friends’ ability to take an educated guess as to whatever past love interest I might be whining about – I’m going to use code names for people instead of risking alienating or embarrassing them.  I don’t mind embarrassing myself on my blog, but I’m not one to drag others down with me.  If they really deserve humiliation, I’ve already probably removed them from the situation I call my life, but still…the whole two wrongs thing.  Math.  Oy.

That’s right, The Biscuit is a boy.

So, as a single guy there are certain aspects of the heart and occasionally simply a biological imperative or need to be met.  There.  Is.  An.  App.  For.  That.

I’m not all that in favor of Hook Up apps, but that seems to be how the world works now.  When I was a kid, I went to bars and picked someone up.  Not today.  Open an app and start chatting.  The issue for me is that I’m really not looking for yet another one night stand.  I’ve been there, done it and it’s out of my system for the most part.  I get that some others are going to follow the same steps I did before becoming ready to settle down – although I’m not a big fan of the guys who seem to wallow in that phase.  Anyway, I’m one of those guys who actually puts data in my app profile and include some variant of the phrase “looking to date”.  Surprisingly, I find other guys who are looking for the same thing.  Take that.

Like The Biscuit.


The Biscuit chatted me up on not one, but two different apps over the course of about five months.  When he came back to the well in mid-January of this year, I got over myself and decided to talk to this incredibly hot guy.

He was nice.  Funny.  Almost age appropriate at 31.  Seemed responsible.  He’s an ER Nurse.  Liberally shared pics – not my thing, but I’m gonna look if someone bombards me with them.  Trust me…it’s not always a good thing.  However, in this instance…va-va-va-voom.

Sidebar:  when I was a kid picking up guys in bars, I never led with showing off my privates.  It just would not have gone over well in public.  In today’s world, I know what someone’s junk looks like before I’ve seen their face pic or know their name.  How fucked up is that?

He liked that I wasn’t into hooking up.  He wasn’t either, ideally, but admitted to having gotten sucked into the game and was stuck in a cycle.  Ok, that’s a pretty earnest disclosure.  I appreciated that.  We traded cell numbers so we could text instead of chat on an app.  Apparently, this guy takes a lot of selfie-porn.  But in between those photographic humble-brags, he was truly engaging and seemingly open.

We became friends on the Facebook.  <gasp>

I discussed him with the Silver Fox.  Of course, although he didn’t know him personally, he knew exactly who he was.  He told me that The Biscuit went to our gym and he and his ex had been such a cute couple.

Of course, I asked.  I’m pretty weak sometimes.

He thought The Biscuit had cheated on his ex with a mutual friend of ours who lived in the same building as them, at the time.  Of course, this gave the Silver Fox tons of insight into The Biscuit’s sexual proclivities.  Gurls talk, ok?  Apparently, we were a pretty good match.  😉

I’m weak for frivolous reasons.  Entertainment, mostly.  In more serious matters, I tend to be pretty good about being mature, so I committed to myself and the Silver Fox to not judge The Biscuit on past behaviors, rather on how he behaved toward me.

Back to textapalooza, which was the sum total of our relationship at this point…more math.  Who knew?

We talked about fitness and how it was/is hard for me to remain as active as I want to since I had to give up running.

He shared a story about how he likes to unwind after a day at work with a glass of wine and laments not cooking dinner because it’s just for one and not as fun as cooking for friends or family.  That he needs to only have one glass because when he drinks too much he gets overly emotional.

We actually made a date.  Set a date and time and everything.  He asked what I thought we should do, and – liking activity dates – I suggested we take a cooking class since it seemed like something we’d both enjoy.  He was pretty excited about that, but I suggested we wait until after Valentine’s Day to avoid the crush of lovey-dovey barftastic couples.  He agreed so we decided to keep it simple (for me) and make it his choice of activities.  I warned him that if he failed to choose, we would be going bowling.  Ha.

Well, date and time established, he never showed up.  He never called or texted, either.

I was pretty disappointed.  How hard is it to make up an excuse?  In our prior off-and-on conversations, we had never gotten to the point of pulling the trigger on meeting, even though our orbits were pretty tight in the Pearl District neighborhood in Portland.  It’s a small town, particularly in the Pearl.  But months of off-and-on chat to develop a familiarity with one another only to not show up?  I know hook up sites are notoriously NOT for making dates and getting to know another person, but I thought we had managed to sidestep that technicality by moving to texts.

I sent him a text and got no response.

I saw him a week or so later on…that damned app again.  I told him he’d make a good biscuit because he was both hot AND flaky.  That earned me this response:


Which I have zero empathy for.  I’m big on words and actions aligning.  When that doesn’t happen, I look at the collateral damage.  When your failure to deliver on your commitments negatively impacts someone else…I’m not that forgiving.  I told him that I felt the same way about his actions, but his actions were his responsibility, not mine.  He gave me a simple, “I’m sorry” .

I let it lie at that, signing off by telling him that I appreciated his words, but I was interpreting is strictly as an apology and not a request for another try at becoming friends or – worst case – deciding we could date.  Leaving the ball in his court.

To my surprise, he messaged back a couple days later saying that he did want a second chance.  Apologizing again for his behavior and explaining that he’d been casually dating  this other guy that treated him poorly and behaved like a total dick.  His words.  He didn’t know why he was prioritizing time with him.

I get that.  I do stuff all the time that I don’t “think” about because on the surface, it seems like a reasonable enough course of action.  The lightest scratch can get right past that surface veneer that looks reasonable and show the crappy reality.  So, we don’t scratch, because, then what would we do?  Risk-aversion, right?

Feeling optimistic that he provided this insight, I began chatting with him again.

That week the Silver Fox took me along to dinner with a friend of his.  An older gentleman that I had heard a lot about but never met, even though he – again – shared the same orbit around the Pearl that I did.  He even worked out at the same gym as the SF and I.

Well, he shows up just so excited.  He’d been at the gym and – not knowing what came over him – said hi to this cute guy and ended up chatting and making a date with him for that weekend.  Going on about him, sharing what little he knows, past seeing him around and their one conversation.

Turns out, 2 + 2 = The Biscuit.  Ugh.  Math, again.

The Silver Fox, being one smooth motherfucker, puts it together a beat or two later and blurts out, “Hey, that’s The Biscuit!”

Heads turned.

Personally, I would have rather just sat there in quiet humiliation, but now the can of worms was open, so I just told him that I’d been stood up by him a couple of times and hoped he had better results than I had.

So, that’s The Biscuit story.  Or IS it?  Remember how I’m weak for entertainment purposes?  Well, the other day, I logged into one of my dating (cr)apps and there was The Biscuit, 63 feet away.  That’s really a feat.  It’s freakishly close.

Of course, I said “hi”.  Three days later.  From a safe distance, after leaving Portland for a week in Seattle.

Stay tuned.  What could possibly go wrong?

This obviously has a strong theme for dating overall running through it, maybe I can put together something about that sad state of affairs at some later date.  Probably not just the implications of dating or hook-up apps on our society’s morality, but even the aforementioned Maze app.  Really, do you need an app to enable poor behavior?  If you’re speeding – which I think is breaking a law – do you deserve protections for those behaviors?  When I jaywalk, I have only my eyes to protect me from injury or citation.  No app for that…yet.

Y’know, if I keep this going.

The Biscuit