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5:37 a.m. - 2002-04-26


You know how some days just start off really shitty and go downhill from there?

Welcome to Yesterday.

So I'm drive, drive, driving to work and decide that I want to get a fresh copy of the newspaper that I used to write for on my way in to work.

I stop at a bagel shop that has a newspaper rack out front that I know will work. There's about 50 racks around town with my former job's newspaper in them ... about 45 of those don't work. They just take your money and lock up. The people at the newspaper know about it, but they don't care. When people call and complain that a machine took their money, the people at the office just tell them to drive all the way across town to the office and they'll refund their money and give them a paper. It's a shitty way to do business, but that's why I no longer work there.

So anyway, I pull up to the bagel company, park my car, shut it off, go to the rack, put my 75 cents in, grab three copies of the paper (yes, I stole two copies but seriously...they owe it to me), get back in my car, crank up the car...


Now then, when you turn the key in the ignition and get absolutely nothing in return, what do you do?

You enter into some sort of temporary insanity world where you think that maybe you just didn't do it right. So you try it again.


At this point, it should be painfully obvious. Something's wrong with the car.

For those of us who have the mechanical inclination of a toddler, we don't give up that easily.

So I turn the key about 231 more times.


Nothing, nothing, nothing, nothing 226 more times.

Luckily, I had my handy, dandy, James Bond-like flip cell phone that makes chicks take notice and say " he a secret agent with that phone or what?"

So I flip it and call Triple A.

That's AAA for those of you who are confused.

A lady comes on the line and wants to know what my problem is.

I wanted to say "I've got a surly attitude because Dad never took me to the circus" but I realize that could jeopardize my wait for a tow truck by an extra hour.

So I tell her that when I turn the key in the ignition, I get nothing. No "click, click, click" and no "beep, beep, beep".


She asks if I think that I may just need a jump.


How the hell do I know? If I knew the slightest thing about mechanics, I wouldn't be a gold member of AAA since 1988. Jeezum Crow.

Dammit, the boy's right back....















Okay, he's alright. Just laying in his crib and crying in his sleep. Must be having a dream of having his legs eaten off by the neighbor's dogs or something. I'm not going to wake him. It's time he learned the pain of nightmares anyway.

So anyway...where was I? the lady tells me that the time is 8:28 and there will be a tow truck there BY 9:23.

Wonderful. I'll go inside, get a bagel, sit outside at one of the cafe tables, eat my bagel, read my paper and wait for the tow truck.

I call work to let my evil horrible boss Wendigo know that I'm broken down and won't be at work for a while.

She curses a blue streak into the phone, calling me a slacker and telling me that I'm not mechanically inclined and I'm an idiot like THAT'S supposed to upset me.

Dammit...the boy's still crying. Those dogs must be up to his thighs by now. Be right back.












Alright, he was really awake that time. Mama's out of the shower and has him in her arms so he's cool.

So anyway...ummmm...Wendigo yells at me, I hang up on her and go inside to get a bagel.

Go inside and order a sun dried tomato bagel.

"Do you want that sliced or toasted?"

"No. Just a plain bagel."

"Would you like cream cheese on that?"

"No. Just a plain bagel."

"Any ham, bacon, sausage?"

"No. Just a plain bagel."

"Would you like a drink with that? Some chips?"


So I get my bagel. I go outside, sit down at one of the tables outside and enjoy the weather, the plain bagel and the newspaper.

Life is good. Considering that I'm broken down. But if you're going to break down somewhere, try to do it at a bagel shop on a pretty day that has tables outdoors. Man. Now THAT'S breaking down!

So the tow truck guy comes at about 9:20.

"You need towed?" he asks.

"Well, the lady on the phone said you could try jumping me first," I said, slowly easing my pants down around my thighs.

"She MEANT your battery, sir," he clarifies.

"Oh. My bad," I said, pulling my pants back up and turning a deep shade of red.

So he goes to jump my battery off.

Sure enough, the car starts.

Wow. What will modern technology think of next?

"So, I'm good to go?" I ask.

"Well, I'd replace that battery if'n I was you," the truck driver says. "It's 'bout dead."

"Thank you, my good man," I say. "I shall do that!"

I get in my car and chuckle to myself.

"...Someday," I giggle. "Yeah...I'll get a new battery...SOMEDAY!"

I laugh maniacally at my fiendish plan to not get a battery immediately until I come to my senses and decide to go ahead and get a battery.

So I go get a battery, the sonofabitch charges me like $60 for it and I drive to work.

Get to work...have a ton of work ahead of me.

I had to write a 1,600 word profile about an insurance company.

Insurance companies bore me to no end. Yes, they're providing a decent service. But once you explain which services they offer, you're finished and still have 1,500 words left to write.

So that took me about six hours to do. I finally finished it, sent it off and am currently waiting to hear from them telling me what a complete and utter moron I am.

Then...that OTHER company.

I can't mention them by name. They're a huge household name corporation that sounds a lot like Pewlett Hackard.

I've been going back and forth with this company for six weeks. I wrote a profile for them and sent it to them.

The girl sends me back an email saying it's not quite what they wanted. They wanted something that talked more about their global domination in the marketplace and how they're just the fucking best g-damned computer company in the whole freakin' world.

Oh. My bad.

So I rewrite the damned thing, making sure I kiss their ass until my lips are chapped and their ass is raw, talking about their global domination.

I get another email from the same girl...this time she's included comments from an email that she received from her boss about the profile.

This boss is a complete ass. And the girl that sent me his "comments" could have left a few of the comments out to spare my feelings.

One of the comments was that my writing was "laughable". know...that's a compliment when I get it about this diary or my former job as a humor writer.

But now that I'm writing serious profiles, the word "laughable" is a derogatory comment.

What he was talking about was my constant ass-kissing in the profile. "They are leading the industry into the 21st century, trailblazing a path that others will follow" and shit like that.

He didn't like all the ass kissing.

So I was back to square one.

I emailed the girl back and asked point blank "What exactly are you looking for?"

She says to check out their website and go to "Company Information" and that should give me an idea.

I do this.

There's only about a billion different links on this page.

So I write her back and ask her to be more specific.

"Just read it all and you decide for yourself."

I write her back and tell her for the sake of time, point me in a certain direction.

"Just read it all and decide for yourself."

I read about a paragraph, rewrote the damned thing for a third time and sent it back yesterday, explaining that I was growing frustrated with this because she is not being specific with me about what they are looking for in the profile other than a "global" image when the book they're appearing in is supposed to focus on their role in the community.

I told her that her deadline to have this finished was Monday and that I needed feedback from her TODAY.

Let's see if I get any.

At least any that doesn't call my work "laughable".

So then, I come home, fire up the grill and prepare everything for dinner.

Grilled chicken breasts, baked potatoes, corn on the cob, pasta salad and garlic bread.

Very summery meal.

I go on the back patio to check the grill and I hear Nosy Assed Neighbor come out on her back patio to give me her daily verbal beatdown.

What did I do?

Well, I did the Christian thing, of course!








I ran back inside quicker than a Catholic Priest yanks his jockeys up when a young boy's parents walk into the room.



I stood in my kitchen, laughing loudly and slapping my knees, proud of the fact that I just walked away from the evil ex-whore.

Susie and Andrew get home, and of course, Andrew has to go out back and play.

Susie goes out there with him.

I follow her out.

Nosy Assed Neighbor says "Hi".

....I run back inside.

This pissed Susie off because she was going outside to water plants and needed me to watch Andrew while she was out there.

Then NAN corners her and wants to tell us that our closets need to be bigger or whatever the hell negative shit she has to tell us today to burst our bubble about selling this house and getting out of this godforsaken neighborhood.

Susie comes in and she's pissed about being cornered when she had work to do.

That's the irony. NAN tells us we need to do all this work on our home and then when we try to do it, she comes outside and demands that we listen to her and her negative ranting so that we can't get any work done. We're the only people in her life that she talks to other than telemarketers, so we bear the brunt of all her shit.

Then Susie confesses that she had a bad day from hell at work.

Due to the lack of time left I have to write this, I will try to sum it up:

My wife REALLY has an evil boss. The woman is actually a regional supervisor who has had it out for my wife ever since she got a 7% raise out of the blue from her former supervisor.

This woman recently nixed my wife's annual raise of 3% to 2.6% and said it's because "she cares more about her family than she does for her job".


What an insult.

Anyway, the wife's upset, I'm upset, we need to find her a new job and the boy is currently pulling on my arms wanting me to come play with him so I've gotta go.

Peace out.

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