Archive for ‘Coffee’

July 6, 2013

Spending The Day With Stupid

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Quietly sitting in my smoking perch, the back veranda (well, it’s actually a porch but I’m trying to sound high-minded here), I am able to observe humanity in it’s less than glorious state.  While gazing at this living edition of Cracked magazine I shake my head and say to the squirrel eating a nut on a nearby tree, “..and these people are allowed to vote, have children, and install your cable TV.”

In this instant, while far too many in society are stumbling their way through a life pattern that resembles a closed circle, I am insulated from this social plague by distance, nicotine, and caffeine.   Unfortunately I do not live on an island off of the coast of Maine, so at some point I have to wrap myself in my stupid-condom and become intimate with what is passing for civilization in 2013.

Entering the house to ready myself for the day, I pass the television in the sitting room (living room for those not of high-mindedness) just as the morning news began a story on a local murder.  It was 6:30 in the morning and there, in living color, was this on-sight roaming reporter, broadcasting live outside the court house, which at this time of the morning was dark and empty, but where in 4 hours the alleged murderer would be arraigned.  Every so often during her story, the reporter would turn, look and point at the court house as if expecting it to saunter up at any minute and issue an official statement.  As to the story, apparently some scumbag disrespected another scumbag (neither one of them who were able to spell or correctly define ‘respect’) and so scumbag #2 shot scumbag #1 through the coconut.  Number 2 was apprehended by the men and women of law enforcement when his getaway was hindered by the fact that he was wearing his pants half way down around his ass.

I make my way to City Hall, whose walls are adorned with the photographs of the convicted and non-convicted felons who once served time as Mayor of this ‘great city’ due to the power of the ‘rational’ and ‘informed’ voter, to pay the property tax on my mobile property – my car. I’m standing in line behind a woman who is wearing house slippers and who is talking loudly on her cell phone (apparently someone didn’t ‘axe’ someone else if they could ‘do dat’) at the same time she was being helped by the clerk-type person.  The clerk handed the woman a form and said, “Sign here, ma’am.”  The woman’s mouth fell open, her eyes bulged out and, disturbed by the fact that her telephone conversation was being interrupted by what the clerk was “axing” her to do, said, “What?”  “Sign here, please,” said the clerk again.  The woman, with an unabashed lack of logic and intuition, said, “Sign my name?”  I’m thinking to myself, “No, sign my name, you ignorant tramp!”

Having paid my taxes so that the non-English speaking residents of this city are able to eat better than I, I headed for a coffee fix at Dunkin´ Donuts.  Putting on my best “no cigarettes and no change” look, I maneuvered my way around the unofficial Dunkin’ Donuts greeters and entered the store.  After 10 minutes of waiting in line, watching and listening and wondering what the hell country I was in, I was one person away from scoring my fix.  “America Runs On Dunkin’,” unfortunately the American idiot directly in front of me did not.  After having spent more than 10 minutes in line, this moron had no idea what he wanted and instead, acted like it was the first time he had ever stepped foot in an place that is on more street corners in America than hookers.  It’s a good thing that God made breathing non-voluntary.

I witnessed a man putting $5.00 worth of gas in his car and then burning most of that as he left the gas station like he was Wendell Scott, taking the red-light he went through as a mere suggestion rather than a minor law society enacts to keep order.

I passed a convenience store where several young people were leaning on and talking around a trash can, while throwing their soda bottles and candy wrappers on the ground.

And then there was the usual sighting of the “red-light creepers.”  You know who they are.  They will approach a red-light but stop well before the light.  As soon as another car comes up behind them, they creep forward a bit and stop.  The car behind does the same.  This process is repeated until the light finally turns green.  Today, the “creeper” was the second car waiting for the light, but with plenty of room between him and the first car.  Car number three comes up from behind.  The “creeper” jumps forward and stops.  Number three doesn’t move.   The “creeper” repeats this but the third car still holds still.  The “creeper” then makes three 3 quick jumps forward.  Again, number three doesn’t move.  Again, the “creeper” jumps forward.  BANG!  He runs into the first car.

Sometimes stupid can give me a reason to smile.

May 13, 2013

LIFE WITHOUT THE INTERNET

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I’m not talking about 20-25 years ago, I’m talking about this morning!

Mondays are (ostensibly) my day off and I like to get out early in the morning and hit the coffee shop du jour – or de la semaine in this case – and read the morning news via various iPad apps while drinking way too much coffee (no wonder I’m so jacked up over the day’s news).

This morning I chose to grace a version of Starbucks that is found in West Hartford, CT.  I say ‘version’ because each Starbucks store is different; each has its own ambiance, aura, style, and each will fire the writing and thinking neurons in different ways – a sort of spacial muse.

This particular West Hartford barrister training ground is found in West Hartford center, where along with the Blue Back Square area of the town is, for the average guy from Maine, quite fu-fu.  Thus, when the hanging bells on the door ring it is usually to announce the arrival of high heels or suits, soon followed by the calling out of some coffee drink that takes a half-minute to say.  At any rate, one would expect this particular Starbucks location to be at the top of their game; full of experienced and efficient barristers, clean bathrooms, a bakery display sans the fruit flies, easy chairs that do not make you itch, and fully functioning internet (it is the 21st century after all).

Everything was great except for the latter of these requirements needed to enjoy my simple morning pleasure.

Imagine my horror (I heard someone in West Hartford say that) when after firing up the old iPad, I discovered that the store’s internet connection was on the fritz.  My God!  Would I have to buy a newspaper; the New York Times, or worse, the once popular and credible USA Today?!!  Where will I get news of the fresh blame placed on Republicans by President Obama?!  More importantly (so it seems), how will I know what’s in store for this week’s American Idol finale?!!

There was actually someone at a table across the room who was reading a book…a real book, with a cover and a spine, not one of those ‘e’ things.

I wasn’t able to go into my Yahoo Mail account and delete all the spam emails that had collected overnight, which seem to be attracted to Yahoo like dust to a Swifter.  I don’t play games, electronic or otherwise, so that element of the internet wasn’t an issue.

However, time had not completely reverted back to the time of the Commodore64.  Thanks to the iPad and a clever little app called, “Offline Reader,” which I had, over the past few weeks, ignored copyright laws and loaded with news and opinions pieces culled from the web, I was able to have my morning dose of skewed reality reading.

After nearly 2 hours, I went to have breakfast and then home for a nap – let’s see them come up with an app for that!  The way in which we do some things will never change.

So, where would you be if tomorrow morning you were met with a total internet blackout, mobile and otherwise?  And, taken a step further, a total loss of cell phone usage?  Would you stop on your way work to a use a pay phone in order to call one of your 349 “friends” to tell them what silly thing your pet did that morning?  How would you make up for the loss of being able to tweet about what a twit some celebrity is according to what you last saw on Entertainment Tonight?

I have to go and charge the battery to my iPad.