Sucker.

So, Mel wanted to go to The Salvation Army (TSA) again tonight.  There was talk of a couch or something there.  I was very worried.  But we went anyway.  Fortunately for me, the couch was a much bigger piece of shit than she had remembered, and far worse than the one we have.  Score.  So I don’t have to move a couch.  With that ordeal wrapping up in my favour, I turned my attention to the kids shit… because as a Fat Guy With Glasses, I still have an unhealthy affinity for plastic molded in the forms of nerd icons and stuff from my childhood.

Turns out there was a C-3PO carrying case that said it was made in ’83.  It wasn’t busted all to fuck, and it was sitting in a bin at TSA, so I was doubtful.  But it was only 2 or 3 bucks or something, so I ended up getting it.  After some quick ebay and Google searches, it turns out it was actually from the mid 90s Star Wars revival.  So it’s not from my childhood at all. I feel duped.  
I know it’s my own fault, though.  There was a time when I could tell you exactly what a Darth Vader with a 2 3/4 inch lightsaber in a 3 3/4 lightsaber tray was worth, when it was produced and what the asian kid that slapped it together made for an hourly wage.  Now I’d have to think about which one was 4-LOM and which one was Zuckuss.  (4-LOM was a droid, so that should make recognition easier, I suppose.)
Pop Quiz! Who’s Who?
I’ve lost touch with my inner Fat Kid With Glasses He Never Wears ‘Cause He’s Still Trying To Fit In.   Sure, I still send him e-mails from time to time… but he’s on Facebook now, and it’s really awkward ’cause I don’t really need to know what his current status is every 3 seconds so I don’t do the whole Facebook thing.  And he’s all uptight about it because everyone’s on Facebook and I should just join Facebook already so we can keep in touch, and I’m all like, “Dude, seriously, back off with the Facebook, ok?” and now we don’t really connect as much as we should.  So I bought him this C-3PO thing and it’s not good enough and now he’s all like “I don’t even like Threepio, douche.”  It’s really annoying too, ’cause things were starting to get better since a few weeks ago I bought him this Spikor figure at this store he really likes for 3 bucks, but now I’ve gone and fucked it all up, I guess.   Way to go, man.  I should plug in the NES and smooth things over, but then he’d probably just bitch about having to give away his Atari again.  Fuckin’ ingrate.

A Glimpse Of Hell

I meant to write about this experience Wednesday night before getting Lost. But the blocky adventures of Tetris with Mel kept me from writing.

You see, around 6pm Wednesday night, Mel wanted to go look for a canvas, and then go to The Salvation Army to buy a cushion or a frame or some kind of bric-a-brac that someone bought at the dollar store and then gave to their grandmother on her birthday, who then died a couple weeks later and had the executor of her estate donate it to The Salvation Army.

So, after looking for the canvas with Mel, I followed my first inclination when dealing with TSA. And my first inclination when dealing with TSA is, of course, to stay the fuck away. The reason for this is because other than maybe looking at a couple boxes of records that they have packed away in a corner near the shitters, there’s nothing there that I’m interested in.

So, while Mel goes to TSA, I head to the Co-op to get some Diet Pepsi™. As is pretty much always the case, this took much less time than scouring TSA for the perfect cushion, frame, or Dead-Lady-Garbage, and I headed over to TSA to tell Mel that I was heading to Cockbuster Video to look at their used games.

Immediately I notice something odd. The parking lot surrounding TSA is solid fucking full of cars. Not just parked cars, but cars hovering about looking for spaces like it’s December 23rd, 1996 and Walmart is having a half-price sale on Tickle Me Elmo. After nearly getting T-Boned by a half dozen crazy old women in a Buick Century, I manage to find a spot about a quarter mile from the store. I park, and freeze my ass off as I head for the store.

Inside the door, I see the cause of all the kafuffle. Apparently, every Wednesday from 6pm to 8pm it’s HALF PRICE ON ALL CLOTHING at the Salvation Army. Which, obviously, is something that everyone everywhere needs to be a part of.  It was my own personal hell.

Normally, the musty smell of TSA (or any 2nd-hand Clothing Store) over powers me.  But on this occassion it mixed in with the smell of cold elderly and made me cringe.  The line up for the cash registers–that’s right, registers, 3 were open–had about 25 people in it when I entered.  Rows and rows of clothing racks had women of all ages in them, sorting, lifting and judging.  But more noticable than anything, was the noise of the coathangers as they screeched across the steel racks incessantly.  By the time I had found Mel in the DLG section, I was ready to snap.
I told her where I’d be, and bolted for the door as fast as I could without looking like a complete lunatic.  But noticed something odd as I was headed up the aisle.  There, at the end of the aisle was a woman, mid to late 30s, leaning against her shopping cart.  Her appearance just barely betrayed that she was mentally handicapped.  Her hair was red, and curled in a perm.  Her eyes were small, but the irises huge.  She and her cart were stopped at the end of the aisle, taking up about 3/4s of it.  And as I walked the entire length of this long aisle, she never once stopped staring at me.  Not even long enough to blink.  Coupled with the screeching, it was about the creepiest thing I’ve ever seen.  I quickened my pace, arguably reaching the point where I did indeed look like a complete lunatic, shot passed the woman as she slowly turned like a zombie, and raced out the doors for the car.
Safe once more from the threat of the nearly dead, I headed out to look for videogames.  As it turns out, I picked up Left 4 Dead for the 360.  It’s a game about Zombies.  I really hope there’s no Salvation Army level.
…blouses…

I Really Need That Machete.

I had to go to the mall tonight.  There was only one store that Mel needed to go to.  I didn’t need to be there at all.  Mel doesn’t know the mall here, and so she needed me to guide her.  She was in this store the other day, after wandering the mall aimlessly.  I asked her what it was near.

“I think… Sobeys?”
When someone answers your directions-related questions with a question, it will never end well.
Turns out, the store was nowhere near Sobeys.  In fact, it could only have been further away from Sobeys had it not been in the mall at all.  So I got to cut my way through mall Christmas foot traffic without a machete.  
Halfnaked, fake tanned women walking around aimlessly, leathery skin shining hideously in florescent light.   Packs of teenage girls jabbering on amongst themselves, while faithful lapdogs with their sideways caps trip over their own pants behind the girls, texting each other.  And of course, the one creepy looking middleaged guy in front of the coffee shop, with the button up shirt with 3 buttons undone, greying chest hair poofing out between the links of his “gold” chain and cross staring just a little too long at the leathery women and chatty girls.  It was… unpleasant.
I was just about to head towards Sears and see if they had a machete when two things happened.
1)  I realized that Sears is the only retail outlet that is even more expensive than Zellers.
2)  We were at the store Mel needed to go to.
She did get what she needed to, and we rushed through the mall again, me all but picking her up over my shoulder and carrying her to get us out faster.
Fuckin’ mall.

Machete License

I’m feeling particularly lazy today. A kind of Garfield lazy, I think. It’s Monday, and even though the day is already over, I still feel like I’m in a box, with the covers over my head, avoiding everything.

I guess that’s because I’m so fucking sick of Christmas, it’s ridiculous. I don’t get excited for it until, maybe, the 23rd. Before that all the rigmarole that everyone is going through just pisses me off to no end. Not so much when it’s those close to me, but when it’s these idiots on the streets or in the stores losing their minds over everything… I start to wish I carried around a machete.

I mean really… this time of year, there should really be a license you can get or something. The Machete license. Pass the machete test, and you get up to 10 machete swings, per week, with total impunity. I’d probably save mine up for any trip to the Dollar Store, but I’m sure I’d spend a few here and there throughout the week. Hack off some guy’s little finger because he’s talking on his cell phone while paying for groceries at the checkout. Take a big chunk out of the shoulder of some useless father who’s letting his 5 year old kid run up and down the aisles at breakneck speed. Get out of the car at a busy intersection and go after the first impatient son of a bitch that honks their horn…

Yeah, I need a machete. My folks were telling me a story today at lunch, and I think the person involved should count themselves damned lucky that the 10 Machete Swing License isn’t available, and that I wasn’t there with one.

If you haven’t seen them before, some local companies have taken to adding “Maternity Parking” spaces in their lots. They’re just next to the Handicap spots, and they’re courtesy of the company for pregnant women, or parents of newborn children.

So on this occasion, apparently all of the Handicap spaces were full, because as already mentioned, it’s almost Christmas. This old guy, handicap sticker and all goes to the store and can’t park in any of the blue spots, so he parked in the Maternity spot, since it was open, and next closest, and he probably would have fallen in half had he tried to walk from the back of the parking lot.

He comes out of the store with his wife, gets to his car–and this is about when my parents pull into the lot–and starts getting screeched at by a pregnant woman, here into referred to as “Nature’s Miracle”, for parking there with his handicap plates and handicap tag hanging in the window. “Don’t you realize those spots aren’t for you? Blah blah, Call the cops, blah blah, I’m pregnant, blah blah, etc.”

Dear Nature’s Miracle, here’s a news flash for you:

Doo Dee Doo Dee Do, Doo Dee Doo Dee Do.
Doo Dee Doo Dee Do, Doo Dee Doo Dee Do.
Those spaces? They’re a courtesy granted to you by the store. They’re completely unenforcable by law. If you had called the cops, they would have told you to calm down, and quit being a fucking nutbar. Would you have gone off half cocked if it had been a car with some 13 year old kid with a case of Cerebral Palsy so bad they could barely move? Yeah, he’s an old guy, and he could walk…. But how far? They got a handicap tag because at some point they could not, under their doctor’s recommendation, walk more than 50 feet unassited. Don’t like it? Call Dr. Hugginstuff and get him to fill in some forms for your temporary handicap parking permit.
Now, while I understand completely that being pregnant is an ordeal I will never, ever fully understand, it doesn’t change some simple facts. One of these facts is that many people are worse off than pregnant women. Many people are so close to falling apart that walking at all is a bad idea, even though they must because they have no other people in their lives to help them get by.
I’m sorry to have to be the one to tell you, Nature’s Miracle, but you could argue ’til your face is as blue as the tag in buddy’s window, but it will never, ever give you more of a right to park there than he does, I do, or anyone else. It’s a courtesy extended to you by the company that owns the store you’re shopping in. That’s it. If I want to be an asshole, and park there, the unpregnant man that I am, you can do sweet fuck all about it. At least, not until you get them to pass a law requiring Maternity spaces, protected by the law, in all public parking areas. You do that, and I’ll lobby for my machete license. I bet we’re both in for a helluva long wait.
Besides, it’s Christmas. Calm the fuck down. It could be buddy’s last Christmas. Hell, it could be your last Christmas. Especially if my bill passes first.