Tuesday, June 26, 2012

More Complaining.

It will likely come as no surprise to you dear reader, but I am in a funk. And this is not some general malaise, no sir. This is a funk so funky that you would expect George Clinton is hiding out somewhere nearby.
It is all more of the same stuff you have read here before: I’m so unhappy!
Even I am getting annoyed by the frequency of these sorts of posts. It won’t hurt my feeling if you just skip this one.
Basically I am just not very hopeful about life. I have said things to this effect before. Essentially there is simply no section of my life that I am happy with right now. We all know what the easy answers are:
Unhappy with your job? Find a new one!
Unhappy with your love life? Get yourself some Eharmony going on!
Unhappy with your output of writing? Write more!
Feeling fat and disgusting? Go run more!
And so forth and so on.
And those are very cheap and easy answers and probably they are the best ones, but you know me, I like to ruminate and over analyze everything. That is probably part of the problem, huh?
I have been doing this thing lately to try and relax and while it has only been partially successful, partial success is better than none. When I am having a particularly difficult moment I try to stop myself and assess whether or not that moment is actually particularly bad. And most of the time the moment itself turns out to be okay, it is just the intensity of my self-created stress that is making it bad. This happens a lot at work and I have to say to myself, “This moment is not actually bad. Everything is okay.”
I understand that is pretty silly, but those few seconds of forced reflection have been helping me. Some.
This exercise has also helped me to figure out at least that thright now is not so much the problem, rather it is the looking ahead that is the problem and I am freaking myself out about it.
They say that confidence is one of the things that makes people attractive and let me tell you, I have confidence in spades. What I don’t seem to have though is a goal or a plan. Those two things seem like they should be connected somehow – confidence and goals - but they don’t seem to be - for me, at least – in this case.
If I were to be really honest with you, I have been coming to realize that I may never have actually had a long term plan. You see, I have spent nearly all of my adult life in serious relationships and when you’re in a serious and committed and long term relationship your own plans and goals get amalgamated with the other person’s. I’m not saying that is a bad thing, it is – in fact – what is supposed to happen when you’re trying to build a life with someone.
What may have happened to me though is that somewhere along the line I sort of lost the functional ability to figure this stuff out on my own. That is not an accusation BTW. I’m not saying, “All those damn ladies messed me up!” Nothing like that. I have nothing but fondness and admiration and love for the women I have had relationships with. I’m just saying that perhaps planning and goal-setting is a muscle and I haven’t really exercised it much as an adult.
It is also possible that I have the same syndrome that Ted has on “How I Met Your Mother”. He is basically chomping at the bit to have a sort of life that he doesn’t actually have yet; mainly one with a partner in it. Now I’m not as bad off as that guy, but he is also fictional. And he also seems to have way more sex than me, but that is neither here nor there.
I guess the point of all my blathering on is simply that I am still trying to figure things out. It has been said that a life is always a work in progress, and I suppose that is true of everyone, but I simply feel like other people may be having a better time of it than I am. I have a friend who seems to be in a constant fight with his girlfriend. And I do me CONSTANT. More than once lately he has told me how “lucky” I am to be single (I’m not even 100% sure ifam single right now, but that is a whole other complicated story …) and he tells me that he “envies” it about my life. And I have tried to tell him that I know how bad the fighting can be and how much it can hollow you out, but on the flip side, at least he has someone who cares enough about him to yell.
I haven’t been yelled at in a very long time and there is a part of me that almost misses it. How fucked up is that? Yeah, it is strange living in my head. I’m convinced that feeling is at the heart of why people sometimes stay in abusive relationships; for some people there is nothing quite as terrifying as being truly alone. I’m not to that point or anything; I just miss going to sleep at night curled up with someone who I love. And who can blame me for that?
But back to goals, the setting and the having of them; I’ve been trying to flex that muscle lately and I feel like I am doing it wrong, I still feel like I am supposed to be getting someone else’s input. It’s very strange.
I even went as far as to try making a list of things I would like to do, in the near term and in the long term. That turned into something of a cluster though. My bullet points were things like: save more money, find a job I like, write more.
It was a great example of how truly excruciating vagueness can be.
At this point I sort of envy those people who have always known that they wanted kids ASAP, or who have always wanted to own a house or to make a six figure salary. I have an old friend back home who has been running a small business, paying a mortgage and popping out kids for almost a decade now. God bless him. I wish I knew how to be that way. The only constant I have ever had on my own was “write!” But even with that I have always let the writing get pushed to the side when things like “need to pay the rent” came up. Why is that? I really don’t have a very good answer.
So what have we learned today? I guess we have learned that I’m absolutely no where at the moment. I am adrift on the sea of life. I really need to work on that because I don’t like it anymore than you like having to read about it.
It is simply becoming more and more clear to me that I must do something different with my life. I simply don’t know what that is at the moment. This is the exact problem writers sometimes encounter while staring blankly at a blank page. I feel like I am looking out at a future that is completely unwritten at the moment. There is a part of me that finds that a tiny bit exciting, but the most of me simply finds it terrifying.
My lease has about eight months left on it, after that I need to have something in the works. Does that means packing my bags and moving on? And to where? A former professor of mine has encouraged me to apply to grad school again, is that even reasonable at my advanced age? Would a better job be enough to turn this titanic around? Should I just give it all up and join a collective somewhere? Or find Jesus and let him tell me what to do?
I have always felt like I knew myself pretty well, but I have been doing a lot of soul searching lately to figure out what I really want out of this life. It has not been an easy process. I have been trying to find out why I am constantly on the verge of breaking down into a big snotty, tear-stained mess. I don’t have an answer yet.
As a teenager I was diagnosed with depression and I was on meds until I was about 25. The doctors seemed to think that I simple outgrew the depression as my chemicals stabilized into adulthood, but lately I’m not so sure. I can’t tell if the way I feel is situational and reasonable or if I’m in the shadow of that old cloud again. Dexter’s dark passenger makes him murder people, mine just makes me want to cry like a little girl all the time. I’m not sure which one of us is better off. That’s a joke. Kinda.
Well, in the absence of a clear path forward I guess I will just try to make another one of those lists of goals … because that worked so well last time.
Sorry this post has been so long and rambling. It was more for me than for you anyway.


Monday, June 25, 2012

The Mondays.

Just a warning about the posts that follow, I have a pretty severe case of The Mondays. And have for a couple months now … that’s how The Mondays work, right?


Bathsalts Made Me Do It.

Bathsalts Made Me Do It
by james bezerra

My recent string of violent assaults
was the result of a bender with bathsalts.
I sincerely apologize
for feasting on that man’s eyes.
And for devouring that woman’s head,
but as I have said,
I was in quite the altered state!
Now however I feel great!
So perhaps the governor
would seriously consider
a stay of execution?


Leaf Heads.

Leaf Heads
by james bezerra

Hey, wouldn’t it be weird if we lived in a world where – instead of growing leaves – trees grew tiny heads that could talk? But the heads had the same life cycle as leaves? So at first the trees spout tiny little baby heads and those heads just cry all the time. So if you left your window open on a warm Spring night – instead of hearing the rustle of the leaves – you would hear thousands of softly crying baby heads.

And then in the Summer, when the leaf/heads are fully matured you would hear them all talking to each other. They would be saying things like, “How did we get here?” or “What is going on?” or “Why are we so high up?” or “Why don’t I have a body?!”

But then as Fall set in the leaf/heads would start aging and changing colors and shriveling up and dying. So if you were out for an evening stroll you would only be able to hear a cacophony of shrieks and groans because all the heads would be screaming, “Oh god, oh god! I don’t want to die! I don’t want to die! Please help me!” And as the weather grew colder and the leaves fell, the ground would become covered in a brown festering layer of dead, rotting heads.

Then the Winter would finally descent and there would maybe only be one sad, lonely leaf/head left hanging on the branch outside your window. And at night, when you crawl into bed, you would still be able to see its face lit up in the pale moonlight. And you could see its sad, lonely, putrefying eyes looking in at you. And you would look back at it and you would be struck by the sadness you see in its disfigured, but still very human-looking, face. You would realize how lucky you are. And how warm you are. And you would stare at that leaf face and you would want to say something. But you wouldn’t be able to think of anything to say. And you would feel a real sympathy and a kind of sadness so deep that it makes you uncomfortable. So uncomfortable that – even though it makes you feel awful – you get up and close the curtains so that it can’t look at you anymore. Then you go back to bed and you lay with your back facing the window. And then when you wake up the next day and look outside you see that the face is gone. That it broke loose sometime in the night and you look down and see it laying there on top of a fresh layer of white snow. You see how black and misshapen and alone it is. And you feel guilty again for not having done anything to help, even though you still don’t know what you could have done.



I have a terrible problem! I really like the music of A Fine Frenzy, but it makes me SO INCREDIBLY SAD to listen to because it is basically what longing and heartbreak sound like, but at the same time I think Alison Sudol is one of the most beautiful people currently living and so I hate skipping her songs when they come up on Pandora.

What am I going to do?!



Overheard at the Kidnappers’ Convention, Pt. 1

Overheard at the Kidnappers’ Convention, Pt. 1
by james bezerra

“I was totally displeased
by the new security measures at Chuck E. Cheese.”


Overheard at the Kidnappers’ Convention, Pt. 2

Overheard at the Kidnappers’ Convention, Pt. 2
by james bezerra

“No one ever pays attention
to the stellar grammar
in my notes for ransom.”


Overheard at the Kidnappers’ Convention, Pt. 3

Overheard at the Kidnappers’ Convention, Pt. 3
by james bezerra

“When dismembering a hostage,
always start with the pinkie
because you’ll save on the postage.”



by james bezerra

I’m no theologian
but I’m trying to determine
if maybe Moses was a wizard ..?
Because all that “Exodus” stuff
seems to just scream “Gandalf”!

My Dirty Dictatorship.

My Dirty Dictatorship
by james bezerra

You know who doesn’t ever riot?
People who get laid a lot.
If I were running a dictatorship
I would make sure my population
was well educated in all forms of copulation.

Pet Porcupine.

Pet Porcupine
by james bezerra

If your pet porcupine
were suddenly mine
I would remove the pricks from his spine
and use him as a pillow!


The Least Funny Limerick Ever.

The Least Funny Limerick Ever

by james bezerra

I miss feeling happy.

Lately I feel kind of crappy.

Perhaps I should eat better food.

Or take a pill to stabilize my mood.

Or stop writing poetry that’s so sappy.


Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Walrus Furniture.

Walrus Furniture

by james bezerra

I met a walrus who builds custom furniture.

When he told me of his vocation

I asked for the location

of his showroom!

I paid a visit the next day

but to my dismay

discovered that his ambition

far exceeded his execution

when it came to the construction of an ottoman.

Really everything he had on display

was faulty or dangerous in some way.

Bent nails jutted from a wobbly futon

and not a single chair was comfortable to sit on.

I politely told him

that his products all had a problem

and the walrus began sobbing suddenly

and then he admitted sheepishly

that he’d always known, subconsciously,

that his work was hampered by

his inability to hold a hammer properly

owing to the fact that he had a flipper

where his thumb should be.




by james bezerra

Due to an unfortunate typo

on legislation passed in Ohio

it is now a misdemeanor

to contribute to the delinquency of a miner.


The HR Manager.

The HR Manager

by james bezerra

As the manager of HR for The Company

the duty has fallen to me

to talk to you about all the pornography.

Whatever you do on your own time,

well I and The Company think that’s fine.

However the pictures in your cubicle

are simply unacceptable.

Additionally, you cannot talk dirty

even to your own Siri.

It does not make

any difference if you’re on a break.

But your most egregious offense

was the refusal to wear pants.

In all my years of HR management

I don’t think I have ever met

anyone who so blatantly

violates The Company policy.

So I am warning you,

this behavior must not continue

or the company will be forced to …

Wait, what did you just say?!

No I am not gay, and you need to put your … thing away!

This is entirely inappropriate!

Put your clothes back on before

I have security drag you out the door!

No! You cannot pee in that potted fern!

Well it appears you’ll never learn,

so I’m sorry, but you’re terminated immediately!

Now stop trying to hug me.




by james bezerra

Upon finding a magical amulet

I made a wish upon it.

It granted my wish in a flash;

my wish was for a luxurious moustache!

I’m now so very very sexy

that I didn’t even need to wish for a goatee.



by james bezerra

I think it would now be fair
if you want to compare
my poetry to that of Shakespeare.
You see, I have learned the age old secret
known by Homer, Pound and Elliott.
If ever you get stuck,
just make stuff up!
See “up” and “stuck” don’t even rhyme!
But do each have that nice “uuuh” sound.
This solution I have found
has worked very well for me!
And if ever that doesn’t work, go to Plan B;
which is to say, just make up new words constantly!
Shakespeare invented the word “submarine”
which I will now rhyme with my new word “hacktackerine”!



by james bezerra

I used my labelmaker
to make a label
for my labelmaker
and the label read:
“Jamie’s labelmaker!”




by james bezerra

The stress monster lives in my neck

and down in my back.

It makes my muscles tight and taut,

puts skinny fingers in my brain

which make it hard to begin

each new day.

But each day I do find a way

to clear my head

and get out of bed

and to myself I say,

“Perhaps today will be a better day.”




by james bezerra

If, around your heart, you dug a moat

I would build a simple boat

and float to you.

If you put your heart in the bank

under lock and key

I would stage a daring daylight robbery.

If you scuttled your heart to the bottom of the sea

you should not think that would stop me

from mounting a deep sea recovery.

If you sealed your heart in a block of ice

I wouldn’t even think twice

about melting it free.

With a blow torch, if need be.


Trilogy Killer.

Trilogy Killer

by james bezerra

Hey, remember Ewoks?

And how the fans got all in a tizzy

because they were so cute and fuzzy?

Some even said they ruined the trilogy!

In hindsight though, the average fan now thinks

Ewoks were far less offensive than Jar Jar Binks.


On the Rocks.

On the Rocks

by james bezerra

Since we are stranded on this desert island

we should probably try to find

a way to get along.

And we should end this silly fight

about who sank our boat last night.

But those rocks did come out of nowhere!




by james bezerra

Deep down there’s a part of me

which really misses Dick Cheney.

Dick was like Darth Vader!

Whereas this fellow Romney

is about as interesting as a non-functioning radiator.




by james bezerra

Scott Walker won his recall election

which means it is a fact now proven

that Wisconsin should be fired from the Union.


Thursday, June 7, 2012

Kingdom on Moonrise.

I went to see the new Wes Anderson movie “Moonrise Kingdom” and I was so very very happy with it that I simply wanted to say so out loud on the internet so that everyone can see that I do not - in point of fact - hate everything.

I’ll spare you the spoilers and my personal English degree take on the whole thing and just say that it is exactly like what we have all come to expect from Wes Anderson only a little bit better. It is essentially a love story about two teens who fall into the sort of fully committed and completely, thoughtlessly dedicated kind of love that one really ever only sees in movies (I mean, come on, even Marshall and Lilly have their rough patches), but even accepting that I will admit that I got a tiny bit misty eyed right there at the end.

I will admit that “Fantastic Mr. Fox” is one of my favorite movies (I’m sure my imaginary therapist would have a lot to say about that), but I believe it is possible that “Moonrise Kingdom” may actually be a better movie.

Certainly some of you will go see it and shrug it off as “cute” and then go about your day. Well that’s fine. It just means you’re dead inside.


OH! One more thing! Bruce Willis is in “Moonrise Kingdom” and let me tell you, the Bruce Willis in this movie would NEVER have been able to hit his 800 feet drill depth on that Armageddon-ish asteroid as it hurtled toward Michael Bay’s Earth. No way. Or run barefoot through a field of broken glass. Or dyed his hair blonde in order to assassinate the First Lady*.

*That was in the movie “The Jackal” which is either the most awesome campy action movie ever or one of the worst completely earnest movies ever. I can never decide.


Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Mister Willis.

Well now I have Bruce Willis on the brain so I am going to attempt to remember as many Bruce Willis movies as I can without referencing any database other than the one inside of my freakishly balding head:

Moonlight Kingdom (Obviously)

Armageddon (Harry Stamper says goodbye to his daughter Liv Tyler and always makes everyone cry no matter how many times they have watched it on Sunday afternoon TV)

The Fifth Element (An Orange tank top, really? But Gary Oldman was kind of a badass, right?)

Die Hard (Awesome.)

Die Hard 2: Die Harder (Um … okay, that’s still awesome. I guess …)

Die Hard 3: Yet Even More Hard Dying (Say what you will but Jeremy Irons is pretty cool when he gets out of the car and walks into the bank and an instrumental version of “When Johnny Comes Marching Home” is playing in the background. OH! And man, that scene in the elevator when Bruce Willis realizes that he is going to have to straight up murder an entire elevator full of people! Well that’s just good dying harderness!)

Die Hard 4: Live Free of Die Hard (Hey remember that scene when Bruce Willis jumps onto a fighter jet as it flies under a freeway overpass? Neither do I because I didn’t go see this thing either)

North (the B.W. as the reoccurring spirit guide type guy in this children’s version of “A Christmas Carole” knock off. Why have I seen this movie?)

Death Becomes Her (I really don’t remember this movie at all)

The Last Boy Scout (I wasn’t allowed to watch this as a kid and when I finally did I remember thinking, “Yep, there’s a reason I wasn’t allowed to watch this as a kid.”)

Pulp Fiction (Everybody always forgets he’s in this! He machine gunned John Travolta to death [somebody needed to]!)

Mercury Rising (Oh yeah, you know I watched this one. Here is the condensed version: it is bad)

Breakfast of Champions (Yes the Vonnegutt novel. Yes, they made it into a movie. Yes, Bruce Willis is in it.)

Blind Date (You forgot about this one, didn’t you? Kim Bassinger is in it and they go on a blind date and then chaos ensues. Yay romatic action comedy!)

Friends (Okay, this was a TV show not a movie, but B.W.was on it and was the father of the student Ross was dating and he basically smacked Ross around the way that all of America always wanted to smack Ross around.)

Moonlighting (Speaking of TV, if you have never seen Moonlighting you should go find it and watch it. Basically an 80s private detective show but so much more awesome than that. Seriously, go see if it is on Netflix.)

The Siege (This is a very good movie that was actually made before 9/11 but deals with issues of Islamic terrorism, the murky connections the US has to the Middle East and how quickly a democracy can become a police state.)

Last Man Standing (Basically a hyper stylized cross between a spaghetti western and some classic noir. The B Dub rolls into town and plays the local bootlegger gangs off each other and then kills a bunch of people. And I think he gets the crap beat out of him and, if I remember right, there is some native American girl involved somehow … or something.)

Titanic (He played Jack.)

The Whole Nine Yards (Mister Willis played the hitman with a heart of gold who taught Mathew Perry about life, women, and love. And murder.)

The Whole Nine Yards ... 2? (Or as I like to call it, “A sequel that clearly indicates that the writers and producers of The Whole Nine Yards do not understand the meaning of the idiom they chose to use as their title but certainly enjoy making money”.)

Striking Distance (Mister Willis plays a boat cop in like Cleveland or Pittsburg or something and his new partner is pre-Sex in the City Sarah Jessica Parker and together they hunt down a killer who uses a tazer [first time I had ever seen a tazer in a movie]. Eventually the killer turns out to be Bruce’s own cousin [who was played by the guy who was also the dude perpetually working on Murphy Brown’s house]. Also this movie is noteworthy because it is the only time I have ever seen the guy who played Frasier’s dad play anything other than Frasier’s dad, only when this movie was made he WASN’T FRASIER’S DAD YET! Did that just blow your mind a little?)

And then there is the seminal masterpiece … um … um … shit ……. I think that those are all of the Bruce Willis movies I can think of without thinking very much or using the internet. That just bugs the shit out of me because I’m sure I have forgotten some of his best work. As have we all.



Through absolutely no effort of my own I recently came into possession of an Olympus E-500 digital SLR (thanks Rob!) and I recently spent a weekend playing with it around my apartment and trying to figure out how the hell all of the buttons and dials work. I once dated a very talented photographer and so I have some very very very minimal understanding of these things.

Of the seven hundred thousand pics I took that weekend, below are the only ones worthy of posting. I promise that I will get better at this.

A flower thing.Because I'm a girl.

Some wood we have sitting around. What? You don't have wood sitting around?

A non-epic shot of the TV displaying an epic shot of ... something.

My wall of writing notes.

My plant Fred.

A totally meta photo of a book about hotos. I mean photos.

Lilith the cat. Do not be fooled, she is awful.

A rare decent picture of The Kitten. Don't be fooled, she is awful.

A rare photo of your author. Don't be fooled, he is awful.

Felt which hangs in my hallway.

Naked. Juice.

From left to right: My grandmother's old lingerie chest, one of those warped mirrors from Target that makes me look skinny, a drawing by my charming and delightful friend, a bookcase.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Note to Self.

Dear self,

Stop eating microwave burritos and go buy food.




Snail Gender Identification.

Snail Gender Identification

by james bezerra

How do you tell

a male snail

from a

female snail?


The male snail

has a penis.



I was recently having a G-Talk convo with my dear friend The Captain and we were exchanging tips on the things that the ladies like (we are both divorced men) and I was explaining how the ladies really like it when you explain say things like, “it puts the lotion in the basket” which prompted his delightful tirade below:

Not everyone is part of the 1% and can afford wells and pardon me Mr. Fancy, I can just buy a shovel at OSH. Some of us can barely afford top ramen, Fancy Pants. Some of us just buy a small potting pot with potting soil and say, “Stand in the pot, now put the lotion on … I’m just gonna hand you the lotion, I can’t afford string and a basket.” Elitist.



The guy I share an office with is a Filipino man in his fifties and I love him dearly. He is a great guy and he has the same diction and speaking style as one of my favorite Muppets. Additionally he is awesome because whenever a junk mail about Viagra slipped through to his email he takes it as a personal affront and gets legitimately annoyed about the fact that the internet thinks he needs Viagra. That’s hilarious, right? Sometimes his indignation totally brightens up my day.


Butter Churn.

Butter Churn

by james bezerra

I would really like

to see –

and to pee

in - the sea.

However, unfortunately

I am Amish and

live outside of Cincinnati.

So instead I just churn my butter

and think that things might get better

when the End Times come,

because perhaps then

Jesus will bring the sea to me!

How is this not the ultimate meme yet?! It has a hot tattooed chick, physical fitness AND A KITTEN!

Also, it is my damn blog and I can post whatever I want on it!




by james bezerra

I always hope

each new email

Is your email.

But it never is.

It is always only

Pizza Hut deals

wanting to fatten me.

Or student loan lenders

wanting my little bit of money.

I even check my junk folder,

just in case it somehow snared you.

Better to blame an

overzealous filter

than to think you’d

rather not talk to me.


The Aggressive Blue Jay.

The Aggressive Blue Jay
by james bezerra

I met today
an aggressive blue jay
who was not interested in
calm mediation.
I was eating a sandwich and plum
and he decided he wanted some.
Like a dive bomber he struck
which caused me to erupt
with screams of girlish terror
which only increased his ire.
His violent hunger was only sated
when I quickly vacated
and left behind my lunch.