Panaceas Caninis

Been sick for days. First, flu-like sick. Then vomiting & diarrhea sick (in a cruel twist, my body insists on voiding below the equator first, then demanding I bend over and puke where I just…voided. Sometimes the body is a dick). Now, migraines & vertigo for four days. And all the while, deadlines to the left of me; deadlines to the right of me.

The medication for the migraines and the dizzies works, but it’s like quelling a riot by dropping an A-bomb. It wipes out the targets, but it wipes out everything else in the area – in this case, the “area” is my brain. All the work I do depends on my ability to think. When I take this pill, I can’t think straight. It’s like being high, if being high sucked. Like, it doesn’t have any of the fun parts of feeling high…just the “Wow, my head is fucked up; I can’t think or drive right now; all I can do is sit and veg” feeling.

My cousin just emailed me a picture from when I was about 8. It’s me, my sisters, and my favorite dog ever, a Siberian husky named King. My head is still a mess. But my heart is smiling widely. Love you, prima.

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Top 10 search terms that lead to my blog

My blog’s been read in 90 different countries a total of 5,693 times.

When I googled “5693,” this came up:

5693

 

Makes a man think.

Simplicity. So essential, yet so elusive. Why? How can something so simple prove so difficult to grasp?

Today’s Google image (they really should pay me for all the free publicity) is this:

littlehouse

 

That’s Laura Ingalls and her sister Mary from Little House on the Prairie. Little House appeals as a slice of a simpler time, at least simpler in certain ways. People back then didn’t have to deal with car insurance. Or global warming. Or the falling ruble. On the other hand, if you were catching junebugs down by the creek and happened to skin your knee…yeah. Death.

 

Truth be told: this is my favorite sister.

Truth be told: this is my favorite sister.

Truth be told: this is my favorite sister.

Truth be told: this is my favorite sister.

The show always makes me think of my sisters, of the three of us being young and having simpler senses of everything. I still remember how mind-blowing it was when the cable remote had like 30 channels. Now my TV guide goes up to channel 1997. And I don’t watch at least 1990 of those channels.

The last couple of weeks have been one of those stretches in life where I haven’t cared about anything. To be more truthful, I haven’t cared about myself. Not a whit. It’s weird, whenever this disassociation hits. It’s always going to be there, I know. It’s a lifelong energy. The feeling doesn’t change, but its color does, in relation to larger life contexts. Such as age. I’m 36. Not caring about myself at 36 feels different than it did when I was younger. It feels like a wrong turn, one I can’t afford to be making at this stage of my journey.

So I’m trying to focus on simplicity. In that spirit, this blog is simply a list of my 10 favorite search terms that have led various intrepid internet interlocutors to Blues of Nine. These are all real.  Continue reading

The longer you live, the farther you get from life

three mouths

I recently joined Twitter. My decision was strictly work-related: I’ve been interviewing a lot of people lately for Posting & Toasting, and a lot of them, in place of email addresses, list Twitter handles for their contact info.

I left Facebook months ago and haven’t missed it one bit. In my first few weeks on Twitter, I learned it’s no social media. It’s antisocial. Took me a while to learn that when people tweet comments or links, they don’t do so to start a conversation. They don’t want to hear what you think about it. They just spit shit out, getting dozens, even hundreds of retweets. They’ll be favorited ad nauseam. But there are never replies. Audience is assumed, required, yet simultaneously superfluous. Twitter’s like a land whose people have three mouths and no ears.

On depression, darkness, dreams, and finding yourself: Stephon Marbury

steph

Sometimes on this blog I write about life. Sometimes I write about sports. When I’m really, really lucky, I get to write about both at once. Today I wrote a piece about Stephon Marbury, a former NBA star who accomplished everything he wanted in life and found it left him empty, depressed, and wanting to die. He left the states and moved to China, where he’s resurrected himself as a ballplayer, a public figure, and a self-defined human being.

Steph was always a paradox during his time in NY. He brimmed with humanity sometimes, and at other times he was involved in some fucked-up things. In short, he was like me, and probably like you. He was a year older than me and lived one of the dreams I grew up with. When I was 16 I wouldn’t have wanted to be anyone more than him. In the end, we both had to learn the same lesson: getting what you’ve always dreamed of isn’t the same as being happy.

Fuck Marie Antoinette

"I'm a paralegal."

“I’m a paralegal.”

Last month I moved into a new apartment. I live in a third of a house, and a family lives in the other two-thirds. As is always the case with apartment living, it’s been……interesting.
The people in the house ain’t the friendliest bunch. But I’m not complaining. They’re a thousand times better than the neighbors from hell whom I dealt with last year and wrote about here and here and who eventually drove me away. Plus my new landlords are actually really nice. She’s Chinese and beautiful. He’s Serbian and beautiful. They have a child who is, not coincidentally, beautiful. Not all people are beautiful (that’s called foreshadowing).

My first night in the new town, I drove to the supermarket. As I circled the parking lot looking for a parking space, there was this guy walking about 20 feet next to me. There was also a Jeep driving in front of me. Suddenly a blue plastic bag came flying out from the Jeep’s front passenger window, and it peeled off. The man nearby ran up to the bag and picked it up.
At first I thought the man, like I am, was disgusted by someone tossing litter out of their car. People who throw garbage out of cars deserve to be publicly flogged. They angry up my blood in record time. I thought the man who picked up the bag was gonna run after them and give them a good haranguing for what they’d done. Instead, he tucked the bag inside his jacket, looked around, then scurried off to his car. This wasn’t littering. It was a drug deal. And I’ll be honest. When I saw it…I laughed.

fscott Continue reading

Online Dating, Or How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Love The Bombs

bikelearn

I first gave online dating a stab a year and a half ago. Took a break for a while, gave it another go, then gave it up again. A few months ago I picked it up again, figuring the third time might be the charm. Maybe online dating’s like riding a bike: something you get better at the more you do it.

The first time I’d tried it was doomed from the start. I wasn’t ready; my breakup was still too fresh. Ironically, the first person to “like” me on the website (because online dating is like eighth grade: a “win” is when someone “likes” you) was my ex. As a favor. As if throwing someone a bone after you’ve ripped out their heart is fair trade. Then again, egocentrics by definition have warped worldviews. If an ass grows wings and flies, you can’t really blame it when it crash lands.

In round two, I went out with a lawyer. We met for dinner, where she mentioned her ex. Then mentioned him again. And again. And again. And again. This was annoying–especially when the check came and I, the professor, opened it up to see the total and she – the lawyer – said “Thanks!” We went to a bar after, where I thought a change of scenery and some drinks might move us into new conversation. Nope. Now, I’m a mellow dude in general. But my pride burns deep inside me like the hot Caribbean sun. I have quite the subterranean ego. I didn’t like feeling like I was just some stand-in. I was going to let her have it, but after we left the bar she let me have it. In a good way. Sometimes being a stand-in’s pretty good.

satisfied

Round three has seen its share of WTFs—specifically, seven distinct classes of girls: Continue reading

Are you there, Blog? It’s me, Matthew.

I haven’t written anything personal, either fiction or non-, in a long while. Between end-of-the-semester grading, holiday travels, writing recaps of the NY Knicks’ tire fire of a season, and book reviews, there’ve been demands aplenty. January should be a friendlier month.

In that spirit, I wanna put out requests to y’all for blog ideas. What would you like to see addressed? Political goo? Social topics? Hygiene? Love/dating/sex?
I’m brainstorming a piece on Iggy Azalea getting heat from Azealia Banks. Azealia claims her beef with Azalea (see what I did there?) stems from Iggy spitting insensitive lyrics…’cuz if there’s one genre where insensitive lyrics don’t fly, it’s hip-hop.
I’m a big fan of some of Azealia Banks’ work, especially “212,” “1991,” and “Van Vogue.” Her lyrics ain’t exactly a Hallmark card, though. Azealia Banks complaining about insensitive lyrics is like Hitler criticizing Stalin for being a meanie. Long story short: this feels more like hating on a white girl rapper ‘cuz she’s outshining a black girl rapper. In Banks’ defense, though, if you click on the link above you’ll see she pretty much has beef with everybody, regardless of race, gender, or whether there’s a legitimate beef in the first place.

I don’t know Iggy’s work very well, though I did dig “Fancy” (thought that may be a chicken/egg thing, since I’m also a huge fan of Clueless).

Q-Tip decided to educate Iggy on the long and noble history of rap as a “socio-political movement and culture.” Odd that this impetus didn’t kick in for Q during all the decades the “socio-political movement” was blowing up going on about bitches and hos and violence and drinking and drugging and parties and money and bling. Don’t remember the heat coming out of cats back then. But a white girl wins a Grammy a year after Macklemore does and suddenly hip-hop’s so lofty and revered you’d think it shits marble.

If you know me personally, are there any stories you’d like to hear? How about the night I had to prove I wasn’t insane to get out of a psych ward? Or the world’s worst toilet malfunction happening at the worst possible time in the worst possible place? Maybe you wanna know how on-line dating is going? Or maybe you just wanna know what’s a-happening here and now?

Hit me up, yo. Merry ’15.