concrete trenches
sometimes more feet than shoes.

Thursday, October 30, 2003  

Pumpkin HeadPumpkin Head

One Halloween someone I knew from high school got married. She ran into my roommate and I somewhere, and begged us to come (M. had received an invitation but hadn't R.S.V.P.'d yet). Being that the wedding was on Halloween proper, she also told us that we should come to the reception in costume. She wanted people to show up in costume so bad!

So we spent a good couple of hours getting ready. We had matching costumes: he was Jesus and I was Satan (I used to be surprised when people thought we were a couple). I build a beard for M., horns for myself. He constructed a Jesus robe from a bed sheet and some artfully hidden safety pins.

We cabbed to the reception and walked into a room full of people dressed like this were any wedding reception on any given day of the year. She seemed pleased to see us in our makup, though it's hard to tell what a bride is thinking at her wedding reception. I was feeling three inches tall. I actually used to have a recurring nightmare where I was the only person to arrive at a costume party in a costume. Cured me of that repeat dream, anyway.

Still, Halloween is one of my favorite holidays. Today when in Dunkin' Donuts I bought a marble frosted just because it was orange and black.

| posted by christopher | 12:46 AM

Wednesday, October 29, 2003  

Google me this, BatmanGoogle me this, Batman

I am beginning to tire of the "Hey, look at this wacky Google search that turned up my site" post. Having said that, I have to comment on this just-too-weird-to-ignore occurrence. Today I was linked to the following searches:

Tax return concrete check
mission accomplished banner photo
"uss abraham lincoln" banner "mission accomplished"
"mission accomplished" banner
mission accomplished banner who paid
photo of bush mission accomplished banner
condoleezza rice and mission accomplished
 "mission accomplished" banner
mission accomplished banner

The only rational response must be "What the fuck is up with this?" What did I miss while slaving away at the restaurant?

| posted by christopher | 1:17 AM

Monday, October 27, 2003  

Weekend UpdateWeekend Update

Dinner in a Chinese place on the west side that serves bottomless glasses of wine and a gratis Dimetapp flavored plum wine with the fruit desert. Played fortune cookie charades.

Saw another show on Friday that begs the question of what you say to people you like when they do poopy theatre.

Paid eight bucks for a bourbon in a way too crowded bar. Hire fewer aspiring model/cocktail watresses/future trophy wives and charge a reasonable price for your Maker's, fer cryin' out loud!




I was in the bar, giving my goodnights to my cohorts when I felt someone push against me from behind, one of those space invading full body shoves you get in a crowded bar. I don't think I shoved back, but a little gentle push back is usually the norm. "Hey, there's someone occupying this space."

Next thing I know, there's a thud and simultaneous crack sound. I turn to see a very large man lying on his back, his head against the seat of a booth. Hands up near his chest, kind of flicking, eyes wide open staring at absolutely nothing. There was a stream of snot coming from his nose. His lights were totally out. I bent down to see if he was OK. To see if he was breathing. Everything stopped for a minute. Someone said to call an ambulance. The man twitched a little, seemed to try to focus on me. Then, he grunted, stood up, wobbled. Someone told him to sit down. He asked someone, a friend it turns out, what was going on. Why were people looking at him.

"You passed out, man."


"Passed out cold, you were on the floor."

The man clapped his hands together, shouted "Alright!" and strode out of the bar.



Bought a new copy of "How to Cook Everything" by Mark Bittman. Not because I can't cook, but because I can. Also, X got custody of the old copy, and frankly she needed it more than I.


| posted by christopher | 9:28 AM

Friday, October 24, 2003  

Strangers on a trainStrangers on a train

Two strangers on a subway train

A: So, you get up at five thirty in the morning?

B: Yes.

A: And you stand in line outside?

B: Uh-huh.

A: But you may not get the job.

B: I may not even get an audition time. If I'm not there early enough, I may not be seen at all. That's why I have to get up at five thirty.

A: God.

B: Yeah.

A: I don't know how you can do that.

Silence. They each take a drink from their coffee cups.

B: So, are you on your way to work?

A: Me? Oh, no! I'm from Dubois. I'm here on vacation.

B: Your getting an early start of it.

A: Yeah, I'm going to go to Times Square to stand in front of the Today Show window!

| posted by christopher | 10:15 AM

Wednesday, October 22, 2003  

Springing eternalSpringing Eternal

An agent called me today for an interview next week. Wish me luck, hold your thumbs, cross fingers, slay a chicken and sprinkle it's blood in the sand, whatever.

I'm starting to feel the familiar drain on the self esteem that comes with audition after audition after audition and no response. I like to think I'm good at what I do. Ok, actually, I like to think I'm a fucking genius at what I do. So why don't the block-heads who cast the work I want think "Golly, Brian, he's perfect for the big show!" Instead I get the nagging voice (sounds like Mom) saying "If you're such a goddamned genius, where's your big Broadway contract, Superstar?"

Fucking M-G-M.

I blame them for filling my impressionable young mind with the fable of the star/starlet being discovered. His/her talent and drive and spunk and looks and, er, hometown charm will win over the big city and soon his/her name will be in lights! Why haven't I been cast in this photoplay?

| posted by christopher | 6:24 PM  

"One, Two, Freddy's coming for you""One, Two, Freddy's coming for you"

Apparently I'm having nightmares again. I start making terrified sounds in the night, waking up BG. She tries to shake me but I will not wake up. Eventually I stop. She's stuck awake, left wondering what I'm seeing that's so provoking. She tells me in the morning, and I'm left wondering what's so frightening that I won't let myself remember it.

| posted by christopher | 9:26 AM

Sunday, October 19, 2003  

size mattersSize Matters

Klutzy me tripped on the audio cable attached to my Powerbook, and sent it crashing to the floor. The machine works fine, no harm. Except . . .

The tip of the audio cable is still lodged inside the jack, meaning the computer thinks there's a pair of headphones attached and the speakers won't play. Also, I can't actually use headphones because there's a little doo-hickey stuck inside the jack. No harm. Except . . .

I took the machine to Tekserv and asked them if they could pluck the little bit out. Turns out they can't (or won't) without taking the machine apart and getting at the audio out port from the back side. Problem: the audio out is attached to the logic board. To replace the jack is to replace the logic board. Which means over one thousand dollars. The price of portability.

Also, when I brought the machine in it had a kernel panic. The tech, looking all concerned, said, "I hope you're backing up your data."

I went to the doctor with a cold, and left with cancer.

| posted by christopher | 1:35 PM

Friday, October 17, 2003  

Mr. Applegate, pleaseMr. Applegate, please

Last night was the best damn baseball game I've seen in a long time. Tons of New Yorkers pressing as close as they could to the lone television in the bar, drinks in hand. No talking. Everyone there rooting for the Yankees. Almost.

When Pedro's pitching fell to shit and Grady Little didn't yank him, the bar erupted. But it was only tied. Then inning nine, inning ten. More quiet. One of the bartenders turned to me after the Yanks got out of a sticky inning and said "This game's gonna give me a fucking heart attack, I swear ta gawd!"

Try getting a cab after a pennant championship game in New York. On my way to the subway, I saw many celebrations, people with their Yankee gear on, drunk and happy, like they helped; perhaps they did. The two best things I heard were these: woman lazily holding her hand out for a cab that wasn't coming, talking on her cell with "Aaron fucking Boone? Aaron fucking Boone!? and the guy asking everyone who passed outside the subway entrance "Who won that game? Who one that GAME!"

| posted by christopher | 10:19 PM

Wednesday, October 15, 2003  

The politics of french friesThe politics of french fries

There's a young lady with whom I work, who is one of those irritating people. One of those people who tries to be nice and ends up being a pain in the ass. Someone who you wish would just stop talking!

She works one shift a week. One, that's all. Yet, when she is called about picking up shifts she first doesn't return the call and then can't cover the shift anyway. I want her to cover me tomorrow so I can have a relaxed time auditioning for a show. Instead, I have to get up at five-thirty, stand in line for three hours, audition, and then go to work two shifts. I see why no one calls her to cover the lucrative evening shifts.

Is this even remotely interesting? Probably not. But I hope One Shift has a particularly painful time at the dentist tomorrow.

| posted by christopher | 4:51 PM

Tuesday, October 14, 2003  

Watch your back, Walt Whitman!

Ok, twice in a row I'm co-opting a Morning News link, but this is just too, too bizarre. It seems our President is also a

| posted by christopher | 6:50 PM

Monday, October 13, 2003  

cold dead hands

Perhaps this should tell you something. If it were me, and all those people were against me, I'd maybe start to look take that cold, hard look inside.

To nearly quote Eddie Izzard: "Guns don't kill people, people kill people. But the guns sure do help things out a bit."

| posted by christopher | 11:51 PM

Sunday, October 12, 2003  

Dog Day AfternoonDog Day Afternoon

Took a kick ass bike ride yesterday, after resigning myself to a winter wonderland soon. Still trying to get re-acclimated to Northeast weather. It's been over ten years.

But the ride... oh the ride.

Decided I wanted to bike across the Brooklyn Bridge. Looked at a map, decided on the best route, and headed south. Was doing very well, found the Manhattan Bridge Bike Trail, and figured the B Bridge can't be too far off. but I made a fatal error: I assumed I'd be able to see it.

Most pictures of the Brooklyn Bridge are taken from the bridge itself or without a reference to scale. You can't really see the bridge from Brooklyn. I finally figured it out when I was in Red Hook.

When I finally reached the bridge, an hour and several miles after I thought I would, I was giddy. This was my first crossing of a major landmark. I loved it. Next time, I know where I'm going, and it'll be even cooler.

Of course, next time will probably be in May.

| posted by christopher | 10:19 PM

Friday, October 10, 2003  

makes you stronger...makes you stronger

Have you ever been so tired you couldn't sleep? One of my coworkers asked me to cover her shift last minute, and so I spent around twelve hours of my day in the bar.

I'm still trying to find the perfect shoes. My feet feel like hell. I'm sticky

The high point of my day came when I discovered one of the toilets had a broken seat; snapped completely off. I had to reach into the bowl and fetch the bit o' seat that had fallen into the not entirely clean water, and then wash my hands in scalding hot water (I have some issues about toilets).

My whole reason for saying yes to shifts that may otherwise kill me is twofold: a) I am trying to become the darling of the bar and 2) I have an eight-hundred pound pet gorilla named Credit Card Debt from the ill-advised trip to Scotland. C.C. for short.

C.C. is getting a really big meal this month.

| posted by christopher | 2:02 AM

Wednesday, October 08, 2003  


Hey, California! Strong work, there! Congratulations! You've picked the governor you truly deserve and pined your hopes on the Austrian Oak.

I'd be dancing the schadenfreude two-step if you didn't have the fifth largest economy in the fucking world!!

Here's a great plot for Arnold's next movie: well know action star approached by Republican brain trust to front a campaign for governor. He wins in a landslide. But here's the twist - unlike feel good movies about the power of the individual to change the system, the action star is simply the puppet of his Republican handlers, and the state becomes even more mired in financial ruin, but with fewer social services.

| posted by christopher | 5:01 PM

Tuesday, October 07, 2003  

Did I say "Finished?" I meant "NOT finished!"Did I say "Finished?" I meant "NOT finished!"

From a Frank Rich OpEd piece in the New York Times:

"Last Sunday Condoleezza Rice, kicking off a tour that will soon take her to Oprah, went on 'Meet the Press' and, with a straight face, said that the 'Mission Accomplished' banner crowning President Bush's 'Top Gun' speech meant only that 'the mission of those forces that he went to greet had been accomplished.' "

I want to think the best about my fellow Americans, I really do, but I can't help but think that only the simplest of creatures would be fooled by such blatant revisionism. But is it too much to think that Ms. Rice's statement is aimed squarely at the dim bulbs who would believe it, and vote for Bush next fall? Maybe these are the same people who believe Saddam had a personal hand in the WTC attacks.

Bush, in that little photo op, said "Major combat operations in Iraq have ended. In the Battle of Iraq, the United States and our allies have prevailed. And now our coalition is engaged in securing and reconstructing that country." True, he never said "Hey, bra, grab a six pack and party down. The war is over!" Still, he also never said "Congratulations to the brave men and women of the USS Abraham Lincoln, your mission is accomplished."

| posted by christopher | 11:01 AM  

Glass TeatGlass Teat

BG bought a TV. Fifty dollars off of craigslist. She bought it because she needs to view videotape from her on camera class. Even though I've been TV-free since moving here, I'm glad it's around. I've missed a little TV in my life. The Daily Show, for example. Or a little Star Trek now and again. Plus, now that I'm a New York Actor (tm) I have to watch all forms of Law & Order just to see if there's someone I know popping up.

Here's the thing shhhhhhhhhhhh: the modem seems to carry a bonus of a free cable TV signal. Should I feel bad?

In an unrelated story, it would seem that my landlord has dropped off the face of the Earth, His phone is disconnected, and he hasn't cashed my rent check yet. I'm thinking about not sending next month's check; see how long it takes him to call me then.

| posted by christopher | 12:13 AM

Friday, October 03, 2003  

Nothing to say

Nada. Except my dogs are barking. Man, do I miss the life of leisure. Time was I didn't have to stand on my feet for twelve hours straight asking people if they want fries, slaw, or salad (yes, ma'am, they come with the burger). Instead, I'd tell X I needed some money and she'd give me a check for . . . whatever.

So her accountant sent me last year's tax form, along with a note saying all dividends came from X's portion of our shared return, and therefore I was entitled to none of the over $16,000 she was getting back from the government.

I remember when we were dividing up the stuff. She was pissed that I was staking a claim to things, like particular DVDs. She said "It's like I'm paying for them three times. Once to buy them, once to give them to you, and once to replace them." I had to gently remind her that I actually did have my own income and that some of the things in the house were paid for with my money. Being told there's a refund on our jointly filed tax return but none of it's mine smacks of that it's my money not yours logic. We wouldn't even file jointly except that X's income was so high that I was a shelter for her.

Fuck it. At least her $16,000 tax refund will stimulate job growth. Right?

| posted by christopher | 10:42 PM

Thursday, October 02, 2003  

Let me get this straightOk, let me get this straight

We know they're there. We're sure they're there. We're so sure they're there we're going to go to war to get them out of there. We know they're around here somewhere. We're sure they must be here . . . or maybe over here? No? Well, we'll find them eventually, we just need more time and money.

In a related story, it seems that many of the munitions that are being used against troops in Iraq come from Iraqi military installations that are abandoned but not guarded. One bunker with hundreds of missiles housed inside had it's roof and siding removed by looters, leaving just the beams. Oh, and the missiles.

| posted by christopher | 9:19 AM
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