let the big dog run

When you ride Greyhound, strangers offer you booze out of plastic bottles and illegal drugs and sometimes sexual favors. I once saw a young woman work the same fellow for a couple hundred miles, getting lunch and sodas and attention from him all the way across Texas, only to be picked up by her girlfriend in El Paso.

When you ride Greyhound, you get to see paroled prisoners in county issue suits, newly free again, dig into huge fast food meals. They suck down milkshakes and gobble hamburgers and seldom look straight at anyone. Out west, authorities pull the bus over and go down the row asking names and where you were born, and lord help you if there's some Spanish in your English. When you ride Greyhound, you watch old men in sheepswool-lined denim jackets get pulled off and herded into trailers set up in dusty pull offs, left behind as we roll back onto the highway.

When you ride Greyhound at night through the desert, far off towns become stars in an ink spill sky. I could never go into space, because that feeling of tumbling through the void while cold lights blink at you and the only thing louder than your breathing is the engine keeping you aloft scared me witless until I opened my eyes to the dawn chasing us.

When you ride Greyhound, everything is further away than you think.


Scar Wars

Since I sort of mentioned it in the last blog, I thought I would give a heads up for this weekend's derby bout. Go out and support your local team! Capital Punishment for the win!

a little off

I feel anxious. Not for any particular reason. Well, for a couple reasons, none of them all that important.

A coworker left for sunnier climes this week, and her duties got lumped in with mine, so I'm trying to find footing in the flood. Yesterday, I looked up a band I used to like on myspace and my worst, nastiest ex is in their top 10 friends, leaving me with a sour feeling in the back of my head. I want to get out of town in a week and a half to visit a girl I dig, and money is tighter than Prince's britches. I have pledged to have a new issue of my music zine finished by the 30th, and I've barely touched the damn thing. And a bill collector's suddenly started calling me at work over something I paid off last year.

In other words, life as usual, except all at once.

The thing is, anxiety's not a regular state of mind for me. I tend to figure that things'll turn out one way or the other, and stressing about it won't help one bit. But when I've got a half dozen worries hanging over me and nothing I can actually do about any right now, well, I feel like I've had a yellow jacket and a red bull.

This won't last, thankfully. I'll burn off some nervous energy tonight playing bar trivia at Gill's (we're the loud team), and a pitcher of beer won't hurt, either. A good friend even offered to treat me this week. So I guess I'll just keep passing the open windows, and I suspect that by the time I get to the rollerderby match this weekend, I'll be back to my normal, grinning self.



Poor ol' Ding Dang kicked the bucket this weekend. I kept him fed, watered, and clean, so I hope it was simply old age. He had a strangely nomadic life for a dwarf hamster and truly loved bananas.