Archives For June 2005

after 5 years of yeoman service the backlight on my laptop has died. the machine still works, it`s just not portable anymore. there were plans afoot to buy a computer this year, but we`re realising with vic going to school in one direction and me working in the complete opposite direction our days of effectively being a one car household are over. getting to class and work currently have more priority than a new machine at this point.

we`ll live. i`m typing this on the same machine, for which i`d fortuitously bought a keyboard at the store`s fire sale last weekend. i must have sensed that the end was nigh. i`ve been bragging about this machine in the store to customers and co-workers alike, it`s a little abused but it`s been a constant companion for a long time. it`s not anywhere the fastest machine in the world but it still produces paying work and for that i`m very pleased. in computer terms, 5 years is a incredibly long time and the fact i`m running the latest OS and producing paying work is testament to the durability of this machine.

there had been talk of replacing the battery which gives about 10 minutes of charge now but if it`s going to be sitting on the desk, there is no point. i could get the monitor fixed but there is also no point in spending almost $600 to fix this machine. i love it and i`m happy with it, but realistically there is no justifying it. we`re just going to have to soldier on with it as desktop until we can do better. i`ve had a second monitor hooked up to the laptop to have an extended desktop to work on. now i`m working with the laptop closed off the 17″ that i had connected, so i`m just going to have to readjust to having one monitor again.

visual stimuli

June 24, 2005 — Leave a comment

“The Human Genome Project found that the difference between the races is minuscule (0.01%) compared with the difference between the sexes (1-2%).”

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hey y’all

June 23, 2005

no. i haven`t turned country overnight, even with the job at CMT. although it`s more MTV than CMT here. it`s very young and hip and i feel somewhat like an observer. i`m not the oldest person here or the only person of colour (there goes my giant token belt buckle idea out the window), but i guess being the new guy i don`t quite feel as if i belong. everyone has been really helpful and pleasant, but i feel like i`m not cool enough to be working here.

but that`s probably my insecurities talking. even tattoo`d and pierced i`ve never though of myself as `cool`. or is it that i`d rather not be part of the cool crowd. whatever, this start as a quick post to let everyone know i was alive and enjoying my job, not a missive to my lack of popularity in high school and how it continues to affect me as an adult.

work is fun, i`m busy. i`m not doing design work and i don`t actually mind, i was a little burnt out. i`m helping manage workflow for the in-house creative and marketing departments here, so i get the best of both worlds; to use my anal retentive organisational skills and to see new and interesting design.

i decided that if i was going to work for CMT i should have clothes to play the part. do you have any idea how hard it is to find ass-less chaps in 42 long? or hat big enough to fit my dreads?

actually i`m kidding. i`ve been too busy enjoying my sense of freedom. i knew my old job was frustrating me but i didn`t realise how much until Friday when i was finally out of that place.

i`m looking forward to starting work tomorrow even though i`ve been sleeping late and lazing about the house. i`m not on the schedule for the store until tomorrow either. it must be the Jamaican in me, but i feel somewhat that Living Color sketch with the guy taking vacation from just one job. i`m trying to remember if i was this edgy last year before i started working.

in the interim, i`ve been cleaning out my computer and enjoying the sublime role playing parody Kingdom of Loathing. i`ve never been much for role playing games, when D&D was getting popular with my peers i discovered that Scrabble; although viewed on the same geekiness scale; was also being played by cute girls and decided that i`d take my chances with the ladies instead. Kingdom of Loathing is too much fun to take as seriously as D&D which is why i think i enjoy it so much.


June 17, 2005 — Leave a comment

i start my new job on Wednesday at CMT. and while the infinite probabilities adjust themselves; i mean how much more surreal can you get, 6` 2″ dreadlocks and a Caribbean accent working at country music television in Nashville; i`m taking a few days off.

in a universe where the probabilities were aligned differently, i was supposed to be off this coming week and driving to Miami over the weekend to renew my passport. however that isn`t quite happening but there is a silver lining. first of all i don`t have to drive to Miami, i can fedex my passport to the embassy and i`ll have it back in a month, saving us gas, hotel and complete and utter exhaustion this weekend.

we were going to start out on Saturday afternoon and be back at some ridiculous hour on Tuesday morning at which point vic had class. not fun. this way we can relax this weekend, go hang out with the boy chick and with the money we`ve saved — do a little shopping. vic needs to get some stuff and i need to get some shoes, retail is taking its toll on my feet.


June 16, 2005 — Leave a comment

the likelihood that there will be an exit interview is slim and none. although now that i`ve had 24 hours to look back on it, the whole process was very strange.

in the process of handing my resignation in, my boss asked me if i wasn`t giving them two weeks` notice in light of the work that had to be produced and seemed genuinely hurt that i wasn`t. so i had to remind her that she had been advertising my position for the last three weeks so she could have one of the respondents to her ad start immediately. plus this is the same woman that never responded to the vacation request i`d put in since April and then further exacerbated the situation by suggesting that i hadn`t accrued any time off to take said vacation. she hasn`t done anything to endear any goodwill from me.

and just when i though it couldn`t get any stranger, it did; she played the race card. she said i`d hurt her as a `brother`. i was stunned. where was this racial love when she was advertising my job and screwing me out of my vacation?

i`m so glad to be out of this place, i feel better than i have in weeks, i don`t care about the vacation, fighting over it is not worth my piece of mind. i should get paid for this week, but my soon to be ex-boss let the hr/office manager leave for the week without saying a word to her about my departure on friday. so i`m not going to have a cheque for the week on friday or a letter promising that it will be covered in the next payroll and i`m a little worried about that.

i try not be nasty, not because i don`t like to, to the contrary i do it far to well, i seem to revel in a down and dirty fight especially when i feel i`m being taken advantage of. not getting paid would definitely be one of those situations.

it`s done. i`ve handed in my resignation and it seems somewhat anti-climactic. thus far it looks like i`m working out the rest of the week, but i`m not sure what mood swing is going to be this afternoon. all my stuff is packed, all personal traces have been removed from the computer, i`m ready to roll.

i`m not going to fight over my accrued vacation time, i pretty much want to shake the dust of this place off my feet and be done with it. i met some really nice people here, but i can`t work here anymore, i`m taking this shit home and i didn`t travel how many thousands of miles and suffer through all manner of humiliation to take a shitty day at the office home to vic.

i`d planned to hand in my resignation one way or another today, the fact that i got another job at this point is icing on the cake. thanks for all the good thoughts.

After being alone in the sandbox for some time, I was joined by a neighbourhood boy who not only liked the same games I liked, but also played with some flair and lots of enthusiasm.

We had a semi-regular play date. I looked forward to the games. We worked out a relationship that is best described as a hook-up.

Me and my boy from `round the way, we decided it would just be kept in the sandbox. Sure, we`d be friendly. And we wouldn`t really be trying to play with other partners. But the whole teif-head about “you`re-the-only-boy/girl-I-want-to-play-with-ever”-well, we agreed to skip that part.

It was, at first, extremely liberating. He`d come over, we`d play. We talked, too, exchanged thoughts and ideas on the world, politics and society. But mostly, we played.

Then the games began to ease up. The first time he came over “just to talk,” I more or less freaked out. I didn`t say anything but in my heart of hearts I wondered, “Is this the end of our beautiful playtime? Is this going to devolve into the bland and soggy terrain of `friendship?`” Because, let`s face it, I didn`t like the boy for his charm. In fact, it was just the opposite. It was his lack of charm that convinced me he could be excellent in the sandbox. A certain necessary roughness, if you understand what I`m saying. That`s not the kind of person I want to be friends with-my friends tend to be more “ejicated” and a little bourgie.

(So that outs me as an elitist.) This boy was not dumb but in a room full of people to talk to, he wouldn`t be my first choice. I guess that`s one of the reasons I agreed to a hook-up and not a dating relationship. I didn`t want him as a life-partner, just a playmate. And he knew it.

Whatever the reasons, the fun and games came to an end. Rather abruptly. One night he was in the sandbox; the next night he wasn`t. And he hasn`t been back since. I think he realised that, despite our original, civilised intentions, he wanted more than just fun and games. I think-and I could be wrong, very, very wrong-that he wanted to be more than just a plaything. And now, gentle reader, I am in the rare position of having a tabanca for someone I`m not in love with, not dating and really had no plans of being involved with over a long term.

So what happened?

Is it that I discovered that I can`t keep the apples and oranges separate?

Is it that, in trying to separate my sandbox from the rest of my “real” life, I was being self-deceptive?

Or is it that I have fallen prey to the age-old appeal of the unattainable?

In making his exit from my sandbox, did he make his entre into my heart?

Just because he disappeared, is he more appealing?

Ah, who the hell knows. Right now, I don`t much care, either. I am feenin` for him, and I`d settle for the friendship-that`s how bad it is. Oh, who am I kidding. I miss the games. I want him back in my sandbox, and I want him now. If a relationship is the price I have to pay, so be it. Bring on the violins.

[ed note:

tabanca, n. (ta-ban-kaa)

Trinidad & Tobago

1. A state of sadness or depression caused by the abscence (temporary or permanent) of a loved one

2. A state of sadness or depression caused by unreturned love

3. A state of fear or worry, caused by concern over the infedelity of an absent loved one


On Tuesday night I had an opportunity to see a preview screening of the latest addition to the Batman franchise, Batman Begins. I will start by saying two things: it was very good and there is hope for this franchise yet.

Batman, created by Bob Kane in the 1940s for DC Comics, featured one of the first costumed crime fighters without super powers. “Traumatised by witnessing the murder of his parents, the young Bruce Wayne vows to avenge their deaths by spending the rest of his life bringing criminals to justice in his home of Gotham. He uses his vast fortune to study criminology, train his body and mind to perfection and assemble a batcave full of vehicles and gadgets,” summarised the BBC in an obituary of Kane, who died in 1998.

The movie is the fifth big-screen adaptation of the comic book franchise.

The first one, released in 1989, was directed by Tim Burton and featured Michael Keaton as the Batman and an over-the-top Jack Nicholson as Batman`s long time nemesis, the Joker. Burton also directed the sequel, which didn`t quite hit the mark.

There were then two incredibly bad Joel Schumacher-helmed transgressions, Batman Forever and Batman & Robin, which turned the franchise into a gaudy, neon-lit, homoerotic romp. The major draw for fans of the comics has always been the darkness of the character and the struggle to balance the character of the billionaire playboy by day and masked crime fighter by night. The 60s TV series and previous three films seemed to miss that mark with oversimplification, garish colours and ham-fisted direction and acting. There seemed to be a belief that because the source material was a comic the characters were two-dimensional.

However, Chris Nolan, director of the incredibly strange thriller Memento, has restored the good name of the Batman. Batman Begins is incredibly dark and layered, it strains at its PG-13 rating and, thankfully, features a nipple-less Batsuit.

Batman Begins follows the path of a young multi-billionaire orphan, Bruce Wayne (Christian Bale), seeking the tools to avenge his parents` murder and bring justice to the streets of Gotham. The movie features an all-star cast, including Oscar winners Michael Caine as Wayne`s butler, Alfred; Morgan Freeman as Lucius Fox, the inventor of many of the Bat`s toys; as well as Liam Neeson as Henri Ducard, Wayne`s trainer; Gary Oldman as Sgt Jim Gordon; Rutger Hauer; Tom Wilkinson; and Katie Holmes. Relative newcomer Cillian Murphy, best know for his role in 28 Days Later, plays Dr

Jonathan Crane/The Scarecrow, Batman`s first costumed adversary.

One of the things I really enjoyed about this movie was how dark it was. Christian Bale has made a fine living playing dark and troubled characters and doesn`t slouch playing the Bat. Unlike all the other films in the series, there is no campiness, intentional or not. All the major characters get off a couple of truly funny one-liners but Nolan has helmed a film more reminiscent of Frank Miller`s Batman: Year One than DC comics` monthly titles.

This movie isn`t so much about the Bat`s adversaries but how the mythos was created and the development of the toys that the Batman has been know for, including the Batmobile and the Batsuit. It isn`t high art but it is an entertaining way to spend an afternoon and gives fan boys like myself hope for the future of the franchise-especially since there is word that most of the principles have signed on for a three-picture deal, making the sequels inevitable.

bits and bytes

June 9, 2005 — Leave a comment

i was chatting with a friend this morning about computing and i realised that i`ve been a computer use for an incredibly long time. more than two thirds of my life. and it`s fascinating to see how far we`ve come.

from tape drives and an entire OS fitting on a 20Mb drive and some of the more popular applications fitting on a 800k diskette. i was in the store looking at the price and size of drives and remembered when the company i was working for paid over $800 for a hard drive that held less that the contents of a CD. and you could only burn a CD with a proprietary burn. i don`t necessarily long for those day, i`m just kind of stunned when i think about how much has happened in a such a short period of time.

i`m got more hard disk space on the desktop i`m using at the office than the entire art department had at my first job, time has flown. and not really meaning to bring this back to the apple processor switch again but i`m quite excited by it, i`ve been through the ups, downs and lateral movements for the last 13 years. i was using macs professionally when they switched from 680×0 to the PPC, i was still using them during the clone wars and i think this is just another one of those necessary changes that probably wont turn out as badly as people think it`s going to.