Friday, October 21, 2016

Nurse the Hate: Still Hate London NFL Games

The goddamn Browns backdoor covered their way to crushing my dreams last week.  I had quite a scheme worked out for an insanely expensive last minute series of flights to Jerez de la Frontera Espana involving a complicated series of travel options.  If the Browns had only kept their end of the bargain I would have done the following:  Gone by uber to the airport to fly to New York where I would have taken a ferry to Newark to grab a taxi to take the escalator to the shuttle bus to take another plane to Madrid where I would have taken another plane to Jerez to get a push trolley to get to a donkey to eventually take me to a lavishly appointed room in Olde Jerez.  From this point I would have collapsed in exhaustion and then later got all drunk up on sherry while stumbling around talking shit and eating jamon.  This was not to be.  Because of the Browns.  Sonofabitch.

This leaves me having a slow smoldering anger at the Browns.  The team is terrible, but not reliably “get their dicks pounded in the dirt” terrible.  They are more like “they’ll lose in the end like always” terrible.  This creates that uncomfortable scenario where you know they will lose, but by how much?  Will their opponent cover?  This week the Bengals are hosting the Browns giving 9.5 points.  Let’s be honest.  The Bengals have looked rather lackluster.  9.5 is a shit ton of points for the Bengals to cover.  They do really need a win this week.  I think the Browns are ready to give that to them.  I think the Browns are really ready to get blown out for once.  Terrelle Pryor is hurt and might not go.  That leaves the Browns with zero (0) reliable offensive weapons and a patchwork O-line.  Joe Haden, who might not actually play football any more but just get a check from the team, will be smiling on the sideline in wind pants.  That leaves “some guy” to cover AJ Green.  That’s not good.  I’m going to go to this well again.  Cincinnati -9.5

There’s another one of those damn London games this week.  Normally I would be all excited for early morning football as I eat my rashers and eggs portion of my Full Monty Fry Up.  (See what I did there?)  However the NFL has once again provided the sad sack Brits with another dud matchup by tossing the Rams in there.  This must be further payback for Brexit.  The Rams are America’s most boring team.  I can’t imagine English Roger and his mates will be excited to pound room temperature beers, run down to The Tube, buy a souvenier LA Rams soccer scarf, drunkenly call passing women “birds”, lament about not being able to see The Beatles at The Cavern Club, get some curry takeaway, watch the changing of the guard, use the words “bloody” and “brilliant”, get punchd in the face by strangers, and then watch Case Keenum and the Rams in the inevitable English rain.  Who would do this?  Roger’s no fool.  Maybe he will stay home with his mum.  (“I’m staying home with me mum”, says Roger.)  Maybe if those damn English fools didn’t leave the EU the NFL would send the Patriots or Cowboys.  Sorry lads.  Keep a chin up!  Here’s the Rams instead.  If I wake up early enough I will bet on the Giants.  If I don’t, I probably won’t even notice I missed the game.  It will be good to wait until Sunday morning to see if any Giants get arrested Saturday night.  Buyer beware.  Giants-3.

I am going to bet on the San Diego Chargers +6.5.  I watch the Chargers as often as I can.  I often look in the stands and think “I could see myself there wearing a light blue shirt really chilled out”.  I would like to yell out “Show me your thunderbolt!” at fellow fans.  Then we'd laugh and have a Tecate.  The Chargers find exciting ways to lose each week.  They are right there week after week, but still lose.  Charger fans shrug it off and go to the beach whereas if that happened here it would result in 50% more domestic violence arrests.  It’s hard to get upset at the Chargers when surf is up.  I see it like this.  Atlanta will shut down the Chargers almost non-existent running game, so both Rivers and Ryan will throw about 60 passes each.  This will be a game where they go back and forth.  I will take the Chargers with the points and count on them losing by three.  Then they will fly back to San Diego pretty relaxed while I count my Jerez money.

Current Record:  10-5         

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Nurse the Hate: Hate Media Bias

I have been engaged in a spirited social media back and forth between some hardcore Southern Republican wonks about the “biased media” trying to suggest that Trump is anything but a great potential president after this debate.  They are so sure they are 100% right on how media works on a day-to-day basis.  I have worked in media for 25+ years.  None of these people have even had a tour of a TV station as far as I know.  Yet, they are absolutely convinced I don’t know what I am talking about in regards to how media content is created.  They are absolutely positive that a vast well-coordinated conspiracy exists in which the “real” news has been covered up and wildly skewed coverage has been cleverly implanted instead.
Here’s what they believe:  The “establishment media” is essentially an extension of the Democratic party elite.  The media works in conjunction with political string pullers in secret meetings and communications to decide how to undermine the efforts of the well intentioned God fearing Republican leaders.  Dispatched and focused left wing minions of these media leaders receive daily marching orders on how to execute the plan and twist the minds of the poor population, fooling them into not seeing how (insert name of far right wing candidate here) would vastly improve their lives and make America a better place to live.  In meetings at each mainstream media property the employees, all blindly loyal to the Democratic party, follow to the letter their instructions from their untouchable overlords.  It is all a well oiled machine designed to weaken America.   

Here's the reality:  An overworked and underpaid office filled with communication college grads toils in an effort to get a newscast on the air.  There is less money in media now than in the past, so staffing is thin.  People are expected to do more work for less money.  The effort is to provide news stories that are accurate so as to not make themselves or the station vulnerable to libel claims.  The same people that provide the teleprompter script for the debate recap are also writing the script for the Cuyahoga County Fair coverage.  They eat lunch at a grim little cafeteria style table out of Tupperware containers.  There is 100% more excitement about free bagels than if the Democratic Party did something.  They are normal people just like you.  

Now the idea of a big conspiracy is very exciting.  Why, it's just like the movies!  A vast government run cover up which has been kept secret for decades.  I would like to point out that this vast cover up has been allegedly going on regardless of the political party in office.  It would seem that Dick Cheney might have sniffed that out and eradicated it over eight years, but apparently not.  I would also like to note that this is also the same government that failed to launch the Obamacare website correctly or can't figure out how to get a Supreme Court justice appointed.  Yet this media conspiracy operates flawlessly.  These conspiracy nuts always think that hyper capable government operatives are ruthlessly moving ahead in their goals.  Meanwhile if I have a problem at the IRS or DMV, no one knows what the fuck they are doing.  Most government employees I have encountered would not be described as "impressive".  Maybe if you do well on a placement test when you apply for a government job they pull you into a room with expressionless men in suits and say "Greg I know you wanted to work at the Board of Elections, but have you considered our Conspiracy Dept?".  Why no!  Tell me more!  "Pay increase, you get to bang Connie Chung, and we show you all the alien stuff at Roswell."  Sounds great!  I'll take it!

The people today were very upset that the media didn't share their enthusiasm for Donald Trump's performance at the debate .  While most rationale people have concern about a major party candidate refusing to concede an election and maintaining it is "rigged", they think this reporting is all "left wing media bias".  Though I would counter that since no one in our republic has ever suggested our elections should not be regarded as just and fair, it is something that is a legitimate story.  No... this is media bias and spin to make Trump look bad.  They are intractable.  What can you do?

I don't know where all this anger has come from on the Trump base.  There are a bunch of uneducated lower class white people that had the world change on them and they don't like it.  They can chant whatever slogans they want about moving backwards in time, but their ship has already sailed.  It is a global world filled with diversity.  "Making America Great Again" is code for "Make America 1965 Again", and that isn't happening.  It might be easier to believe in a vast conspiracy instead of dealing with a new reality, but it doesn't make the reality less real.  In a few weeks after this election we might have hillbillies driving around in F-150 pickups and deer rifles shooting anything that moves.  My guess is that we will have hillbillies doing what they usually do, which is sitting home smoking cigarettes, drinking beer, and watching TV made by the Left Wing Media Conspiracy.   

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Nurse the Hate: My Continued Treatment

October 18, 2016


  So much has happened since my last dispatch.  I continue to coalesce at the Rudolfinerhaus Clinic.  Frankly, there was little else that could have been done considering my condition.  The exhaustion I have been afflicted with is quite severe.  In fact, many of the physicians here suspect my case is the most serious they have yet come across.  They have admitted me with the intention of The Complete Treatment.  Dare I say, anything less might not have made an impact.  It's quite serious I'm afraid. 

  As you have no doubt read, The Treatment is quite regimented.  I will admit the taste of the porridge took some getting used to, but I have been lucky that my body has responded well.  I overheard Dr. Kummerling say to one of the orderlies gathering my sample that my bowel movements have improved since my check in six weeks ago.  No doubt the medications have helped in this regard.  At times I feel almost helpless as the nine pills and three enemas are administered each morning by the staff.

  I should mention that you should not be alarmed that this is not handwritten on my usual stationary.  I am dictating this letter to Thomas, my orderly, who will have it typed up by the staff.  I don’t know what I would do without Thomas.  I have grown quite accustomed to him reading me the daily papers and my correspondence as I sit in my wheelchair by the lake.  What a tonic to sit by the lake after my realignments from Nurse Kraus.  Though quite painful, I know I must trust these wonderful doctors.  They are quite well regarded by the society in Venice and much of Paris.   

  They say the Offenburg Spa will be a worthwhile addition to The Treatment, so I suspect they will transport me there to take the waters for the remainder of the month.  Mr. Burgess had been transported there just three weeks ago.  I believe I wrote you of him?  He is the Pacific Railway Man that had been driven quite mad by the winds in Mexico.  A good man Burgess...  We would take our cognac in the library after his crying fits had stopped.  I suspect he will never fully recover and even now is quite mad.  It will be good to see him again.  I hope he has not been placed permanently in the asylum in Leipzig.

  I will journey to Southampton as soon as I am well enough for the Atlantic crossing.  I have concern that my journey might be delayed as the only tickets for the train to the coast still available are in coach.  I cannot bear the suffering of traveling in anything but first class as my condition will not permit it.  As I alluded to, I am quite exhausted.  Thomas has assured me that he has many contacts at the railroad that might yet make my travel civilized enough for consideration.  Pray God if that materializes I will be home swiftly, in a mere two months.  Let mother know.  How she must worry.

  Your brother,

  G. Miller   


Monday, October 17, 2016

Nurse the Hate: Hate Dreams

I had a dream yesterday where I was a passenger on a bus driving down a bleak highway.  It was impossible to exit the bus except during the stops at specific stations.  Behind me out of view a woman with an English accent was speaking to a companion seated next to her regarding a man they had noticed trudging outside in the rain.  Her lilting voice peaked my curiosity so I looked out the window at the man.  I was the man.  I looked very tired and unsure of where I was going, just mindlessly walking.  I pulled the wire of the bus trying to get the driver to stop so I could help myself and get out of the rain.  The bell rang with increasing urgency but the driver didn’t flinch.  The bus just kept driving.  I watched myself disappear as we drove away.  

I don’t know why I had this Bergmanesque dream.  I don’t know what it means.  I am glad I wasn't playing chess with Death.  I'm not much of a chess player.  I do know that the only thing more boring to others than dreams is talking about your fantasy football team (which mine won yesterday by the way).  The only exception to that rule is if the person you tell the about the dream is a cast member in that dream, in which case they will find it fascinating.  As an aside, never tell someone that you had a dream about them dying unless you really want to mess with someone's mind.  Everyone becomes superstitious when you foretell their demise.

It would be a nice diversion to seek treatment with a psychoanalyst where the two of us would spend an inordinate amount of time discussing the content and potential meaning of my dreams.  I would definitely go to a Freudian.  I think that would be the most enjoyable and offer the least amount of possible benefit.  “So my mother was sitting in a rocking chair in a very revealing gown while knitting a sweater.  When I looked closer I noticed that the yarn she was using was actually coming from my father’s beard.  My father sat at her feet crying and naked with his beard acting like a spindle.  I knew the sweater was meant for me.  No one spoke.  Then I boarded the train and went into a long tunnel where my teeth promptly fell out.”  The doctor will take off his glasses and clean them carefully as he thoughtfully prepares his next utterance.  He places the spectacles back on his face.  He then makes lengthy notations in a notepad without even glancing at me.  “Interesting…” he says.  He then stares at me as I stare back for the next 18 minutes in silence.  The session ends.

I need to look into my health insurance plan for this type of coverage.  Maybe I can go to Austria for this therapy.  I will sit outside during the morning in a chair with a blanket across my legs while gazing at a distant white mountain top.  “Herr Miller?  Are you ready to take the waters?”  I nod yes and am placed in an antique wheelchair to be rolled into a severe white tiled spa where stern meaty armed women work me over with 1920s era medical equipment giving me forced hot spring enemas and agonizing massages.  Then will follow more analysis.  Then a bleak dinner of a watery porridge followed by silently sitting in a common room where an old phonograph plays Germanic marching band music.  Lights out at 8.  Never 8:01.  Always 8 on the dot.  After a month I will take an ocean liner back to The States.  I will smoke cigarettes and gaze forlornly at the cloudy horizon.  At dinner at the captain’s table I will sit mostly silently until someone breaks the ice.

I say my good man!  You’re a Yank I gather?  Back to the States?  “Yes.  I had the therapy at The Rudolfinerhaus.”  Taken the waters my good man?  That will put you back on the path!  Good man!  Chip chip!  I will then smile meekly and sip my gin, pausing to light my unfiltered cigarette.  “Excuse me all.  I’m afraid I must retire to my cabin.  I am suddenly overcome with exhaustion.  I wish to thank you all for a splendid evening.”  The other diners will exchange glances.  I push my chair in and walk away slowly.  That poor man. 

Or I could watch a little TV and just forget about it.       


Friday, October 14, 2016

Nurse the Hate: At The NFL Crossroads

I am prepared to make a deal with The Devil.  I stand now at the crossroads.  The soft hazy colors of dusk smear across the late afternoon autumn sky.  Without question I stand needing to go to the path on the right or left.  The Devil sits on his stump and asks me if I want to make a deal.  There is a great pile of money I can have if I make the right choice.  If I make that right choice I can do something very crazy that will theoretically make me happy.  I need the money to do it.  Without risk there is no reward.  Get busy living or get busy dying.  What’s it gonna be boy?  There is one catch.  I will have to follow his advice and bet on the Tennessee Titans.  Gulp.

I feel very confident that the Browns will lose to the Titans this week.  Last week the Browns managed to get two (2) different QBs seriously injured.  There are platoons that landed on Omaha Beach that took fewer casualties than the Browns QB room.  This week they plan on starting whichever guy they have under contract that has at least a cursory knowledge of the playbook and is still standing.  It is not exactly a harbinger of future success.  The plan as of today is to run Cody Kessler out there despite Kessler “hearing a funny crunching noise that freaked me out a little” in his chest last week.  Side note to Kessler.  Don’t say those types of honest things in future interviews.  The Browns claimed to have iced him down all week and have him ready to go.  Yeah, that ice does magic.  Good luck kid.

My fear is that the Titans do not exude professional excellence.  They also have to cover seven points.  The Titans are a team that rarely wins, and when they do it’s generally by a late kick barely getting over the crossbar.  At no point has a Titan fan in the last five years said confidently “Oh, they’ll win this game easily.  Chalk this one up.”  The Titans are a sad little team that is slowly getting to within sight of respectable.  The Browns are terrible.  I never bet on terrible teams and I also never bet on terrible teams on the road.  Let’s go Titans.  Tennessee -7.

The Public is very excited about the Raiders.  The NFL is better when the Raiders are good.  Who doesn’t like seeing grown men dressed like skeletons and pirates drunk and acting like assholes for a TV camera?  I know I sure do!  This week the Chiefs come into Oakland after getting their ass kicked a couple weeks ago on national TV by Pittsburgh.  This sets up a scenario that I absolutely love as a degenerate gambler.  1.  The Public has a one week old memory.  Whatever happened last week will continue to happen now until forever.  This means the Chiefs will HAVE TO lose to Oakland.  2.  The Chiefs are coming off a bye week which means they got their asses ripped by everyone at work, at home, and in the street about how badly they got embarrassed.  This river of shit flows down to the coaches where Andy Reid is 15-2 after a bye week.  That dude can coach.  He also gets Charles back healthy (allegedly) in the backfield.  I love Kansas City +2.

I really feel like the Jets plus the points is a winner.  Arizona has been playing so poorly and injuries are really mounting there.  However, there is no way I am going to throw my entire life into a tailspin by getting the negative karma of the New York Jets involved in my world.  The Jets are like that necklace I wore last year that got me sick and almost made my foot fall off with the secondary infection.  You just don’t mess with the dark arts and you don’t mess around with the New York Jets.  I need good things to happen for me, and you don’t get that with the New York Jets.  Even typing the team name out has brought unknown danger into my life.  For those of you really feeling like living on the edge, Jets +7.5.  Please note this is not an “official” selection and should only be used by those that feel high altitude skydiving or ice snowmobile racing is not risky enough.  I will only get involved in this if I am "chasing" and I pray to God that doesn't happen. 

Season Record:  9-4

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Nurse the Hate: The Parking Lot Story

Perspective is a very powerful thing.  What appears one way to one person might appear totally different to another.  It is all in the angle in which you are looking at it.  Take last weekend for example.  I pulled the van into a small parking lot in Canton.  A grizzled older gentleman in a day glo vest ambled over to commandeer the situation.  He had the unwavering authority of a parking lot supervisor.  He chewed his tobacco and leaned into the driver's side window.  "Whelp...  This van is too big.  It won't fit in here."  He stood back for a second to further appraise the situation.  He was 100% correct.  The van was clearly too long for any spaces in the cramped lot.  Then I threw him a curve ball.

"No.  It will fit.  It's just the angle you are looking at it."

This was a real brain teaser.  I said it without a trace of emotion, my face a total blank.  His face betrayed the confusion in his brain.  It by all rights appeared the van was 50-75% too large for this parking lot.  It shouldn't have even been a point of contention.  Yet the man behind the wheel showed the utmost confidence that this van would not only fit into any of the compact spots but would do so with ease.

"No.  This van is too large.  It's way too big."

I responded.  "We get that a lot.  It's actually not that big.  It will fit in here for sure.  It's the angle you are looking at it."

Once again the old man crinkled his brow.  He was confused.  How could this be?  Did this man in the van know something about the universe I didn't?  Has something this simple evaded me for all these years?  He stepped back to further appraise the situation.  "No.  I have a Bronco and my car is too big.  Yours is way larger than the Bronco."

The van is much larger than a Ford Bronco.  That is a simple fact.  Yet, I defended my point.  "No, it's actually much smaller.  See, you are just close to the van so it seems bigger.  Take a look at that truck way over there.  See how small it is.  That's actually the size of the van.  You're just so close to it that it seems large.  It's the angle."

He began to dig in.  "Well, you can't park here.  It just won't work."

He responded "Yeah... It's a hell of a thing."

We both then nodded out heads, sucked at our teeth and pondered the situation.  There was silence.  I spoke first.  "How about we unload right here.  After that I will move it back there.  You'll see what I mean about the angle then."

He nodded his head eager to be out of the situation.  "Yup.  That will be OK.  But you're still too big for this lot."

I confidently shook my head.  "No.  It's just the angle.  You'll see.  The van is actually too small for the four of us to even ride in it."

The concept of the van being too small to carry four people that were currently inside it was too much.  He began to walk away.  I threw it in park and started to unload with the band.  Life really is all about perspective and angles.  Some you can see and some you can't.  I don't know about chemical engineering, duck pin bowling, the complexities of women, or if life is controlled by fate or force of will.  I do know this though.  It's all in the angle in which you see it.   

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Nurse the Hate: Baseball Playoff Memory

I am watching the baseball playoffs.  I have always really liked watching the baseball playoffs, though almost all the national TV ads now pummel viewers for erectile dysfunction drugs or mobile phone plans.  I have seen the Viagra ad where the woman says “I overpacked but my man knows exactly what to pack” about 31 times already this postseason.  (In case you are wondering, she packs five suitcases and he packs boners.)  I liked it better when I was a kid and sports ran only beer, razors, and car ads.  In those days men didn’t need to pack boners when they traveled I guess.  Maybe all the cell phone use is causing erectile dysfunction.  I don’t know.

I’m watching the Cubs handle my beloved Giants.  The last time I have a clear memory of the Giants losing in the Playoffs like this I watched Will Clark and Chili Davis struggle in a Game 7 vs the Cardinals on a snowy color TV in Kent.  As I recall I was hanging out watching the game with this guy named Todd from my radio production lab.  Todd was a good guy that really made a mistake going out to a bar with my friends and I.  We had so committed to pushing the limits of tequila consumption, normal humans couldn’t hope to keep up.  Ron Wood would have been hard pressed to hang out an entire night.  We were a bunch of out of control assholes.  We were out of control assholes before the tequila hit, so out of control assholes climbing into a El Toro bottle morphing into a bunch of LA Woman era Jim Morrisons wasn't good for anyone.

Todd wanted to be one of the gang, so he’s knocking back El Toro and Iron City drafts like a sailor.  It was a dive place called The Brass Rail, one of the only places that was showing the baseball game.  The Giants, with whom I had only a passing interest, lost.  This was when we made a poor decision.  Todd decided we needed to drive over to a girl named Jeannie’s house.  Jeannie was a nice normal girl that was involved in radio production with us.  I didn't know her very well, and frankly I don't think Todd did either.  As it was a Monday or Tuesday night, Jeannie was probably relaxing at home with her roommate totally oblivious to what was about to happen.  She was having a Monday and we were having a "Saturday Night After World War II Ended".  There was a bit of an imbalance.

I will say this plainly.  Todd should not have been driving.  I say this as someone that was very intoxicated but still recognized that the other guy was the drunk.  I felt like I was the reasonable one, which I probably was in comparison, but I would have been arrested on sight by any responsible law enforcement officer.  It was a different age then.  A DUI was something that was considered to be like a speeding ticket.  People used to joke around about how drunk they were behind the wheel the previous night.  “I had to close one eye because I was seeing double!  HAHAHA!”  It really wasn’t that odd.  Seriously.  "Don't let the cops see ya!"  Nudge nudge, wink wink.  I hopped in the car and off we went.

We closed in to the quiet neighborhood where Jeannie lived.  I had never been there before so I just took Todd’s word for it.  Todd's car was an old blue Chevy Nova that we called "old" before the idea of "vintage" became widespread.  I remember blasting Evan John’s “Vacationtime”.  The music was so loud I barely heard the sound of Todd's car sideswiping a parked car in front of our destination.  I did get tossed across the front seat though.  “Jesus!  HAHAHAHHAAHA!”  Todd was pretty relaxed about careening into a parked car and scraping the crap out of his.  The car he hit was a relatively new Honda Accord.  It was pretty bad.  “Dude!  Let’s go!”  I guess it wasn’t really an issue.  We'd sort out the car later.  We walked up to the door like nothing had happened.

BAM!  BAM!  BAM!  “Jeannie!!!”  The door opened and Jeannie stood there perplexed in flannel pajamas.  Todd started laughing and walked right in.  Well, I guess we are coming in for a visit…  She seemed pretty receptive if not curious as to why two guys she barely knew had shown up at her house.  We sat down in the living room, turned some music on, and rustled some beers from her fridge.  There was some half assed plan being hatched by Todd about going out for a late night breakfast and he somehow convinced Jeannie to go.  She told us she needed a quick shower and she’d be right down.  Todd and I sat there looking through her records when he suddenly popped his head up and said “Fuck it dude.  I’m going for it.”  Hmm?  What?

Todd bounded up the staircase and I heard him open the door to the bathroom where Jeannie had been showering for about five minutes.  Almost immediately I hear a women’s high pitched “Hey!!!”, some quick male mumbling and then giggling as the shower curtain was pulled back .  That son of a bitch!  He pulled it off.  He was in the shower with her.  Things became quiet in the bathroom except for the occasional thud of two bodies against the tile.  This is when I realized I was about three miles from my house and had no way back except a long walk.  Oh well, I would finish my beer and see how it played out.  This was when Jeannie's roommate woke up and came downstairs to see what the hell was going on.

As I had mentioned before, I was drinking very heavily at the time.  There were weekly adventures that required great effort to piece together.  It was a confusing time.  This is why I did not recognize the woman that came down the stairs in a sweatshirt with her hair pulled up.  "What are you doing here?  Who's in there with Jeannie?"  Oh, that's Todd.  Do you know Todd?  (The look on her face said she didn't.)  My name is Greg.  We are going to get something to eat.  Do you want to go?  "No I don't want to go!"  (She didn't want to go apparently.)  She stomped back up the stairs.  Jeez.  Relax.

This is when it should have struck me that this woman was familiar.  It didn't though.  It wasn't until Todd and Jeannie came downstairs all giggly that I learned that I had been speaking with Jeannie's roommate.  I learned about five minutes later her name was Emily.  I should have remembered it was Emily because about two weeks earlier I had met Emily at a bar downtown and had a really great conversation with her.  She was funny, smart, and really cute.  She understood my dark sense of humor which isn't always a given.  We walked out of the bar together to talk to each other in a better atmosphere.  We walked down past the river and the waterfall.  Between us, I thought I was going to trick her back to my lair and do terrible things to her.  Emily was a woman of some virtue however and didn't want to leap into a filthy bed with a strange man she had met about 37 minutes ago.  What a prude.

Emily gave me her number on a scrap piece of paper.  "I hope we can get to know each other better."  This was great.  I was really excited to have this woman be interested in me.  She was clearly better than I was and even now I have no idea why she would have any interest in me whatsoever.  I must have caught her in some sort of fallow period.  We said goodbye and I told her how much I was looking forward to seeing her again.  I carefully put the scrap of paper in my front right pocket and went back to join my friends at the bar after watching her drive away.  What a great night!

Of course, I lost that scrap of paper almost immediately.  I spent an hour the next morning looking in the same three places over and over again thinking that when I searched my jeans pockets the third time the paper would magically appear.  Jeans pocket.  Floor by the bed.  Table by the bed.  Repeat.  Nope.  It was gone.  I had no idea of her last name or any possible way to reach her.  I had blown it.

About a week later fortune smiled on me.  I was in the same bar and across the room I saw her.  She was pretending she didn't notice me.  I'm sure that she thought that I had blown her off, throwing her number in the garbage.  It was obvious she wasn't someone that surrendered her contact information readily.  As I mentioned, my friends and I were going on tequila benders on a regular basis.  This was another one of those times.  I lurched over to speak with Emily.  Things were quite chilly in the beginning as she didn't believe any of my claims of losing the paper.  I wouldn't have believed me either.  I was a mess.  I must have totally sent out the vibe of "asshole that will say anything to get your panties off".  (This wasn't necessarily that far from the truth by the way.)  She remained skeptical.  Being a young man inexperienced with certain social situations I didn't just come clean and tell her how much I liked her and had fucked up, but rather focused on her unfairly judging me on losing the number.  This did not help my cause.  That's when it came to a head.

"You don't even know my name."  That's absurd.  Of course I do.  (But I didn't!  I had somehow forgotten it.  In my tequila haze I was searching and searching and I had nothing.  It started with a vowel.  An "E" I think...  What girl's names start with "E"?  Think dammit!  Think!)  You could tell she was even pulling for me.  All I had to do was come up with her name and all would be washed under the bridge.  She even offered me a clue.  "Think Pink Floyd..."  (Pink Floyd?  Dammit!  She even has a cool clue to give me.  This one is a winner!  Come on!  Come on!)  I pretended I knew it.  I played it real cool.  Silly me.  How could I have forgotten?  In reality the Pink Floyd clue didn't help me at all.  It only confused me more.  I just kept searching my head for a likely women's name that started with "E".  It was put up or shut up time.  I looked at her expectant face.  Your name is Elizabeth.  "It's Emily!  As in "See Emily Play"?  You asshole!"  She walked away.  Her friends started to laugh at me while exchanging glances with each other.  It was a bit embarrassing.  OK, it was very embarrassing.  It was even an obscure early Pink Floyd clue too.  That made her even cooler.  Fuck.  I slunk away in shame.    

You would think I would have remembered Emily forever.  I remember that incident even now.  Yet I did not remember that incident when she walked down the stairs of her rental apartment to discover The Asshole somehow sitting in her living room that night.  Making matters worse, I did not recognize her at all much less call her by name.  "Why hello Emily!  What a coincidence to see you this evening!  Can I fetch you a brandy my dear?"  No.  That's not what happened.  I introduced myself to her as if it was the first time we had ever met.  In my defense she did have her hair up and was wearing glasses whereas she was dressed to be out at the bars on the other occasions when I saw her.  As Emily quickly scampered back upstairs that night, I wondered why this strange girl was acting so coldly towards me for no reason.  Who is that and why is she acting this way?

Todd, Jeannie and I climbed into the Nova to go to a diner.  We all got in on the driver's side as the passenger door no longer opened.  I was the only one concerned about the car situation.  Hey Jeannie?  Who's Honda Accord is that?  "Oh, that's Emily's."  Fuck.  That's her roommate's car.  This is bad.  Oh God.  Emily?  Wait...  You said your roommate's name was Emily?  (This was when it all hit me like a ton of bricks.)  THAT WAS EMILY!  Ummm...  Did she happen to tell you about a guy that...  "OH MY GOD!  You're The Asshole!"  Yes.  It's me.  The Asshole.  We sat at the diner.  I had a ham and cheese omelette with wheat toast.  I was deep in thought.  I tried to come up with a plan to turn this around while Todd and Jeannie acted goofy.  I had absolutely nothing.  I had even less when Emily woke up the next day and filed the police report of hit and run on Todd.  Todd made a grave error in hoping it would all sort of disappear in the morning.  As I recall Todd had to pay a large fine to the cops, $1800 in repairs, and didn't go out with my friends and I to the bars anymore.  I haven't seen him since.  I haven't seen Emily either.  I hope Emily's car turned out OK.  It's been a couple decades.  She probably traded it in by now.

I curbed the tequila after that.  That nihilism wasn't really getting me anywhere.  Emily would probably like me OK now.  I'd remember her name I'll bet.  I've come a long way!  Well, I never pulled out the win there.  The Giants pulled out the win tonight though.  Go Giants.  I sure do like playoff baseball.