So-So New Look, Shabby (Even for a Hack) Title.

I have been making changes. Many changes. In fact, I had gotten so caught up in changes, that I had completely forgotten that I had this blog. Actually, that is a complete and total falsehood. I was fully aware that I still had this blog. It clung to the back of my brain like a cybertext yarmulke. However, it was causing me a large degree of anxiety. A tremendously large amount.

To begin, I hated the way the damn thing looked. Being unfamiliar with how the formatting thing-a-ma-stuff works here, I am unable to manipulate the design as I was able to back on MySpace. On MySpace, I was a God! I could format the blog’s appearance, and add pictures, and adjust the layout of each blog entry so I could dazzle and amaze! Then MySpace became terrible, and Facebook seems to have something against blogging, so I came to WordPress. I came to WordPress where I saw things like CSS and strange empty windows that would allow me to somehow type something in them in order to create a spectacular looking blog. I searched for templates on the web. I did not have the patience to try and figure out anything I found. Sure, there may be an easy way to go about doing things to give me the blog of my creative dreams, but I just do not have the patience to sit and figure all of the subtle cyber-nuances that would help me create the design of my twisted dreams. C’est la vie.

I know I am being harsh, but I already agreed the old design sucked more!

OCD is a terrible creature. It makes life difficult in the most innocuous, but crippling ways. For me, the anxiety of having a blog with dysfunctional pages was making me nauseous; just thinking about the idea of of WordPress was giving me cold sweats at times. This may sound weird. But it was not WordPress, per se, it was the pages that were a part of my blog that had no data and were just sitting there like failed cyber trash or those blank pages that you can never get rid of in a Microsoft Word document unless you get certified in its use at one of those seminars taught by some IT geek from the regional office of your corporation. Certification that is going to be invalid after the latest update comes out a week later.

To avoid the anxiety, I ignored the blog, occasionally suffering guilt from not writing, and more from disconnecting from the words of friends and colleagues that I share this bloggy part of the net with. I managed to log in periodically and keep up with the blog of a Mr. D. A. Adams. He tends to write daily, and I did keep up with most of what he had going on, but I refrained from commenting on things as I have been feeling significantly less that witty, or able-to-say-something-meaningful-y.

I did try to write a few times during this dark period of apathetic writer’s blockage. I have about four lengthy drafts stored up, waiting for some sort of finish that more than likely will never come; I have grown to hate those drafts. While they started out as interesting tales, they now only seem as relics, fossils, of a lost time period that started with a catch line that was the greatest thing since “Once upon a time,” and eventually came to that senseless drivel that you can read in the fifteen or less line at the local Piggly Wiggly or Kroger or where ever you get your groceries.

And then Arabella posted a blog, And another. Two from her that quick was a bit of a shock to my system. And then Apple sent me an update for my WordPress app on my iPhone. The technology that I had been using on a daily basis was starting to remind me about WordPress. That was odd, but a little motivating.

And so here I am today. I decided to figure out how to remove the offending pages (which I did), find a new design (I stuck with a non-custom design, I hate the fucking orange highlights), and that is where I am at the moment: a new look and a shabby title, and hideous, orange, fucking highlights. Shabby title for now. I have decided that it would be a good idea for me to take small steps. And this is the smallest step that I could imagine taking. For the time being. Yet, in that small step, I also took a spectacularly large lunar leap for Xavier-kind; those that know me well, would have seen that right away. What is this thing? It is the picture of myself that I have added to my blog. There, on the sidebar, a picture of me in full color, non-oldtimey or black and white. A picture that further defies convention and shows me wearing a blue, three-piece suit, rather than my standard black, two-piece with black tie. I am not sure how I feel about that one for the time being, I may remove it once I come up with a better title for my blog.

However, my anxiety and apathy does not begin and end with this blog. I stopped training. All aspects of training, I simple ceased. It was easy to stop running because I hate running and can do without that means of cardiovascular exercise. But I stopped lifting, and calisthenics, and stretching, and most significantly – jujitsu. I stopped going to the dojo. I even stopped thinking about technique. The idea of doing anything just crept from my mind and body. It was if my brain decided to go on strike, and my body joined in a sympathetic shut down of operations in solidarity. Next my desire for inane fun left; the Playstation 3 sits there getting dust, the newly discovered verb, “Batmanning,” slowly creeping from my vocabulary along with the Third Street Saints and Ezio Auditore.

“Bonnie Parker”

What I have been doing, is riding my newly acquired motorcycle. Ever since the last one was crushed by that imbecile, I had been displeased with riding. Sure, I was able to replace the mirrors and turn signals, but I felt like I was riding a victim. It felt as if taking her out was a further violation. And then, the gear shift broke. So, I was no longer faced with the guilty sensation of pushing my poor, injured, bikey to her limits unnecessarily.

Fortune smiled upon me and I was able to acquire another vintage beauty. A nineteen eighty-one Honda Silverwing. I named her “Bonnie Parker” after Clyde Barrow’s infamous, but compelling partner in crime. Since I got her, I have added a windshield (which was graciously given to me from a fellow rider, more on that later), and even gotten some luggage for the back so I can carry things, like tools, Monster drinks, and spare ammunition and tazer cartridges. Oddly, one of the things that pleases me the most about Bonnie is the convenient helmet holders on her sides. Once I figured out how they worked (Thank you, Manthony), I was fascinated with them. I have no idea why. It just is what it is… And yes, although the great State of Michigan has repealed the mandatory helmet law, I still wear my helmet when I ride.

I also joined a motorcycle riding club. From what I understand, there is a definite and distinct difference between a motorcycle club and a riding club, I am a member of a club of the riding variety. While I may offend few by saying this, I wish to be completely honest and say that all that matters is that I have a few cool cats to ride around with and learn how to become a more skilled rider. Sadly, I have not gotten to ride with my new pardners, my schedule is being a total bitch. Happily, my schedule has not prevented me from riding Bonnie. In fact, my schedule has become one that ensures that I have to go places, and the recent spate of decent weather has further ensured that I have had the opportunity to ride to those places.

So, I guess this is where I am. I hope that I have finally gotten through those doldrums that I have kept me in a see of apathy, non-motivation, and generally ho-hummity.


Just Because I Am Wearing Leather, Does Not Mean I Am a “Leatherman”

It has been far too long since I have taken time to write something. Anything. It is not because I had did not have anything to write about. With the new economic policies proposed, the GOP all over the place, the start of the operating year of the Foundation, etc. I just have not found the urge to sit and put anything out. Would that be a writer’s block? I doubt it. I suffered one of those just in time to flee the sinking MySpace ship. This was a different type of thing. An odd sort of thing. It was a combination of apathy and disinterest.

This disinterest seems to be a still running thing for me as I am paying more attention to this rerun of “Family Guy” on [adult swim]. See how nice I am? I left links for you in case you wanted to wander off and wander back as you read like I was doing when I wrote this. You can share my apathy and disinterest. If you do so, the joke is actually on you as you could be getting sucked into my ADD addled brain and not truly being apathetic and disinterested. Next thing you know, I will have you running around the dining room table between forkfuls of food as your mommie tells you to sit the fuck down because you are embarrassing her in front of the guests.

I do not understand "Squidbillies."

A while back, I went to visit my dawg Manthony at one of his clubs. The club that caters to a “mixed” crowd. At first, I was excited about the prospect of this club, I thought it would be a grand affair like the old Mulatto Balls back in Louisiana. I could roam about in my finest of southern gentlemanly attire, admiring the debutantes and chasing their well-bosomed mothers while sipping mint juleps. A grand time indeed, I must declare! However, this was not to pass. This bar is a club that caters to people of various sexual preferences. I would like to say a gay and hetero bar, but that would exclude people and apparently, you have to add all of the types of orientations when speaking of the group that was once known as “queer.”

I went to the club to visit Manthony and was dressed as I am in the picture here. Let me digress a bit and say that I took a few pictures of me on my motorcycle with an attempt to look cool, or like a badass. Personally, I look like someone that I would not want to mess with, but then again, I know how long I have been studying martial arts, who taught me, and how many weapons I may be concealing at the point, so I am biased. But I took the picture and decided to put it in here anyway. Tough looking or no, Apparently no, as you will soon see.

I almost did not add these pictures to this writing. For one, I am not wearing my trade mark black…in its entirety. Instead, there I am in jeans. Jeans that completely remove my ass from existence. I have on a leather coat, but the shirt is some sort of muscle shirt thing, and there is no tie. Instead of looking like a suave, seductive funeral director, I look like Jamaican greaser. Or apparently, something else. As you will soon see.

Personally, I thought I was going more for that Eighties look. It is hard to tell what I mean from that photograph. You can only see me from mid-shin and up. However, I am wearing black shoes and my pants are cuffed (which is usually the case given that I have short legs and a small waist, shorter-legged pants are made for chubbier stock is what the tailor tells me. Whether that is true or not, I do no care. I like to cuff my pants. To be honest, I felt that having the pants French-cuffed would have made the Eighties look more evident. However, that horrid secretary of mine said that if she ever saw me in pants that were French-cuffed that she would steal all of them, have the permanently altered, and have all of my finances put in her name so that I could never purchase clothes again. So, instead of the Eighties, I have a type of rockabilly thing going. Or apparently, something else. As I will get back to now.

Fonzi? (Note the cuffed pants.)

When I finally arrived at Manthony’s club, I parked my motorcycle and was greeted by a group of dudes who apparently were into motorcycles. And classic television. This was the first time I was told what it was that I may have looked like: Fonzi. Some guy walked up, said he like my bike and my outfit. He said that I looked like Fonzi. Really? Fonzi? I guess I should not bitch too much. He could have been some nerd and called me “Dally” or “Ponyboy.” He could have said Black Fonzi, that would have been pretty bad, as well. So, in all things, I discovered that it was not rockabilly, or Eighties that I was in style of, it was Fonzi. So, I had the greaser part down without having the white tee shirt. Not too shabby for a guy whose wardrobe consists of several black suits, white shirts and neckties, a couple of hoodies, and a few gis.

However, the dudes outside were wrong. I did not look like Fonzi. I was not of the Fonz Club for Men. Rather, upon entering the bar, it was discovered that more of the men inside of the club thought that I may be a “Leatherman.” The musclebound man who does what he calls dancing on the stage in his whitey tighties took a close gander at me. A few other guys took a look as well. Maybe the were looking for some sign that would tell them whether they should don a gimp mask or attempt to make me their bitch. Ha! I found the whole thing amusing. For one, I have been know to have my, er, fascinations with things of the leather, chains and whips variety. Yet, I do have to admit that I have never donned a gimp suit, mask, or wanted to be a member of The Village People. Seriously people, just because a guy wears a leather coat one should not think that he wants to lash you to a huge wooden X and barrage you with the sting of the cat o’ nine’ before anally sodomizing you with a giant dildo while using your mouth for a rectum.

Okay, that was a bit graphic and extreme. But that is what you all have come to expect and love from me. There was one other picture that was to accompany this blog. It has been let on the editing room floor as a friendly gesture to you, dear readers, and mostly as a sacrifice to the gods of my vanity.

Finally! The Motorcycle Saga Comes to A Pleasant Point

Yesterday, was a milestone in my struggle with my new motorcycle. I actually took a few spins up and down the drive of the Rothechilde Estates. It was a fun and exhilarating experience, even though I only traveled a few yards.

Anyway, I am getting ahead of myself. Where I should be going is that the leak that was plaguing me and preventing my fun with the new bike was finally fixed, the bike was registered, and it was ready for a ride. I went out and bought a new helmet. The helmet search was difficult. The volume of my dreads demands a larger helmet. The idea that standing at five foot six inches and needing a double-extra large helmet to accomodate my hair was a bit…displeasing. However, I was able to allleviate myself from the worry of looking like a lollipop of deranged Power Ranger bobble-head by getting a “brain bucket” with a drop down visor that stops at the bridge of my nose. That is a good thing as my vanity and fashion sense were not the only considerations for the helmet: my claustrophobic tendencies make the use of a full head covering not only impossible for me, but cause considerable anxiety.

So, new helmet in hand, I went for a ride yesterday (well, now it would be the day before). I had gone on one a week before using a borrowed helmet and almost crashed into a neighbor’s house (I managed to stay in control and not crash and burn myself or my neighbor’s dwelling). The second ride went much better…until the clutch went stupid. It got stuck in gear on me and I managed to finagle it back into first so I could make it back to the Estate, and then in neutral when arriving back at my residence. Murphy, my chief mechanic took the bike for a shakedown and declared that the clutch mechanism was acting hooky. He removed the cover, cleaned the mechanism, oiled the beast, and reassembled. It worked! With the clutch working, I took the bike on a longer ride. This time, I traveled close to one hundred yards. However, instead of hitting the streets, I took a ride along the dirt trails in the orchards and vineyards. I rode for about ten minutes, parked and took a break for the night.

Today (now yesterday, technically) I went for a longer ride. This time I had Murphy haul the bike to Samurai City and took a cruise around. This time, the ride was much better. Unlike my last couple of rides where I pretty much stayed in first gear, this time I tried shifting. While I am not sure that I got it right, I did manage to accelerate to forty miles per hour. Also, I took to the main roads and had a decent forty-five minute trip. I only stalled out three times, and managed to keep my head and handle it with minimal stress.

All-in-all, I would say that I am enjoying this experience a great deal, and cannot wait to figure out exactly what I am doing when I am supposed to be shifting. Perhaps, when I go out tomorrow, I can get that down a bit better. Hell, I may even have Murphy set some cones up for me to drive through…

New Toys and ADD: Part II

“Dear Board Members,

I have attached pictures of Charlotte’s new Caddy to this email. I think that she named it after herself. With that said, Charlotte is fully aware that Charlotte is in need of some cosmetic, and functional servicing. Indeed, the wonder of American ingenuity and chariot of old school pimpery does need some care. However, that is part of the reason for Charlotte’s acquisition of Charlotte.

It is with consideration that I have used my discretionary authority as Board President to instate a non-interference policy. Anyone interfering with Charlotte’s work, driving, or general attitude toward Charlotte will be severly reprimanded, possibly dismissed from employ, and definitely tazed. This policy applies ANYWHERE either Charlotte may happen to be at the time.

Thank you for you cooperation in this matter.

X. Rothechilde”


I was forced to send out that email in regard to folks interfering with Charlotte’s new automobile. I thought that may have to send it out again, this time referencing myself. Then, I got the impression that my point had gotten across. Now, I have decided to send it out as soon as this blog entry has been completed.

You see, lately Samurai City has be overrun by zombies. Fortunately, these zombies do not eat your brain. They are contagious, if you are not careful, however. Instead of munching your gray matter, these zombies attempt to sap your joy, and make you into a mindless yes-man with no independent will. These zombies are repair zombies. They have shuffled loose their reruns of “Home Improvement” in favor of making those close to them feel as small as possible. Sure, most would call the effect these zombies have on a body the work of succubi or incubi. However, an incubus or succubus usually attacks in the night. If they caught you awake, maybe they would seduce you or at the least acknowledge your protests of their invasion. Zombies do not. The ignore you. The move on with only their goal in mind with no consideration of what the victim is feeling, thinking, screaming, shrieking…

Today, I decided it was time for me to take a break from “LA Noire” and do a little more work on my motorcycle. Actually, yesterday was when I made the decision. I went out and repaired a small problem with the ground wires in the bike’s rear turn signal. While it was a small, insignificant thing to accomplish, it felt good to be out there doing it on my own.

For those of you who did not read part one of my motorcycle tale, here is a little backstory. A friend of mine knows a fellow who was selling a motorcycle. I bought the thing for one hundred dollars. However,the whole deal was on the verge of becoming a tremendous regret and frustration for me. What was acquired as my first attempt at restoration, was rapidly being hijacked by some who seem as if the doubt my capabilities.

Today was the day that I was supposed to see what was going on with my killswitch. Only, I was thwarted. Someone shows up, starts dismantling my crank case to find an oil leak, and proceeds to start telling me what to do! I had an order, my order has been fucked. I am beyond pissed. I just walked away and went to smoke. He can have the motherfucker. I am just getting sick of the whole situation.

My new baby, before she was usurped and left for naked.

Eventually, I came out of hiding. When I did, I was being told that the screws that had been removed are now in the correct place. The crankcase cover that was removed is now just dangling, the gearshift and footpeg unconnected. The inside of the crankcase gathering dirt and grime. Since I did not do the assembly completely on my own and at the least, an angle where I could see, I am not sure exactly how it goes back together. All of this was done out of a hurry to get me out riding something that I want to take the time to learn about first. All of this was done with no consideration of how I may feel about what is going on after I made my feelings on the issue abundantly clear.

My poor bike is now sitting exposed and collecting dust. Having OCD, I am having a near impossible time letting it sit like that (why the fuck take something apart before you have all of the elements to repair it?!) and am on the brink of a major anxiety attack. I need a sedative.

New Toys and ADD

Instead of taking the time to sit and write nearly daily as I promised myself, I allowed my ADD to get the best of me and have been distracted by a shiny: a motorcycle. But before I go into the motorcycle, a little detour, backstory, is needed. Originally, this post was supposed to be two separate posts. It is not because I got distracted. Instead, this will be a rather lengthy update, which is of no consequence as I can be a bit prone to blathering when putting my thoughts to “paper.” As a result, I apologize in advance for any distortion in logical presentation, or random jumping about. OCD and ADD are a dangerous combination. Right now, my brain is a jumble of thoughts, feelings, and impressions; they are reflected in my presentation below.

About a month ago, Charlotte was oddly late for the Foundation Board meeting. This was odd, as Charlotte is well known for her obsessive attentiveness to punctuality, and we were about to decide which of us was going to drive to Charlotte’s home to check in (if you call her, she most likely will not answer her phone). Before we could come to a decision, Charlotte strolls in with a smile on her face. She was late, and now grinning a large grin; I wondered if I needed to contact our legal people… We were all looking and wondering exactly what was to come when she informed us that if we wanted to know why she was late, then we could take a look in the parking lot. We knew that we may not want to look, but knowing that we simply had to know what caused this shift in Charlotte’s behavior, we stood and made for the door.

Exiting the Board Room and then the out of the door to the parking lot, we saw what was making Charlotte so pleased with the universe: it was a green, nineteen seventy-six Cadillac Eldorado. With a convertible top. She told us that she got it for a steal. Granted, it needs a bit of bodywork (and believe it or not, Charlotte used the term “TLC”), but it sounds great, runs well, and is an overall pretty pimp ride. Even more impressive than the car, was that Charlotte fully intends to do the restorative work on the vehicle herself. She did purchase new tires, that seemed more economical to her than buying the materials needed to change tires in order to do it herself. She also got a repair manual, air filter and spark plugs. All-in-all, she was learning what she needed to do. Good for her!

After a week or so, I dropped in on Charlotte to see how things were going. She had changed the air filter, and was currently in the process of solving her ride’s overheating issue. She left out the spark plugs. Before I could say anything, she thanked me for asking, and told me that she appreciated how I was staying out of her face. Then she further explained. Apparently, many of the friends that she shared her new car goodness and plans with, were discouraging. They were constantly telling her how difficult what she was going to attempt was, that it would be better to just pay someone else to do this or that, and she mentioned that someone even began the process of changing her spark plugs when she let him see the engine. She was annoyed and wanted to know why everyone was peeing in her lemonade. I told her that I had faith in her ability and that I stayed out of the way, because I respect her space. Then we had some coffee, veggie sandwiches, and some sex.

(Please forgive what may appear as distortions with the past/present tense in the previous paragraph, written strictly past tense read weird to me.)

There. Backstory complete. This backstory is relevant because it leads directly to my own recently acquired toy, which coincidentally, has a motor, and was produced in nineteen seventy-six. Shades of Charlotte. More than you can expect.

Last week, I had the fortune to acquire a motorcycle. Mind you, I have never ridden a motorcycle, but I have struggled with resisting their appeal. Many of my associates ride bikes, so I am surrounded by them in some sense. I had been planning to get one for some time now, and had decided that I would buy one in February or March of next year; then I would have time to learn to ride, get proper endorsement, and have almost six months of riding time versus two or three. However, an opportunity arose and I just had to seize the moment.

A friend of a friend was selling an old motorcycle. Cosmetically, the motorcycle was decent and it did not run at the time. Yet, whatever was causing the bike to not function was allegedly an easy fix. The fellow selling the motorcycle was asking one hundred dollars for it, and I could not pass up the opportunity, which had now become and awesome dual-opportunity: not only could I get a bike, I could learn how to repair it, restore it, and then roll around Samurai City and the hills of Old Mission in the open air on a vintage motorcycle. I could be Charlotte’s two-wheeled counterpart, kicking old school nineteen seventy-six style around Michigan.

And so, I purchased the motorcycle. The next day. I purchased a battery and spark plugs. However, I had discovered that my adventure would be the same as Charlotte’s. Almost identical to hers. I did get to put one of the spark plugs in and the battery. However, the rest of the work was taken from me. Apparently, there are things involved in the process that are easy to mess up and instead of walking me through a hands-on experience, someone else did the work. I appreciated the help greatly, but the feeling of satisfaction from my own creation was being sapped.

The new battery and the spark plugs, combined with draining the old gas from the tank (another procedure I watched rather than did, more sap-age), and refilling with new (which I did) and the motorcycle not only started, but it sounded awesome. It has an oil leak and will require new gaskets possibly. I was told where to get the gaskets (instead of being able to take a look and find them on my own). I was allowed to remove the headlamp to begin the process of changing the front signal lights out, but I was stopped at one and the work done by another. The flasher was not working and something was crossed in the signal wiring, however, I was fortunate in having someone else to solve that problem for me. All the while, I was being reminded of the need to change out some screws to replace with bolts, the changing of the gaskets, and how difficult this will all be to do and that it should not be taken lightly. Pretty soon, all of the “I” in my project became “we.”

I realize that I may be starting to sound like an ungrateful prick. Apparently, the main goal should be for me to get the bike road-ready and get riding. However, I do not appear to be understanding that. My main goal is the satisfaction of saying: “I did that.” There is a satisfaction in accomplishing something for the first time, something that you have never done. The joy of hard work. I fully accept that I could make some foolish error and be forced to get the bike to a mechanic to undo my mistake (if possible). Yet, is that not my mistake to make? Is that not part of learning? Getting the motorcycle running today is not going to make much benefit to me, I still have to get the endorsement for it on my license and learn how to ride the damn thing. I still need a helmet. I have not bought one yet so I do not foolishly tempt myself to hop on and ride the bike before I should be.

I understand that my approach may take me the rest of the summer to get on this motorcycle, but in the end, I will be more satisfied with the outcome. The time taken is not a problem for me, it took me at least three, maybe four years to become shodan in jujitsu. If I could do that in three or four years, I can fix a motorcycle in a month or two. Some may agree with me, but then, they do not understand jujitsu; if they did, they would understand my mindset.