Monday, October 31, 2005

Past the reality check, please?

How's the job search? I don't know and I don't much care.

It's now the winter of Ryan (a.k.a. summer of George). Bizzaro world has kicked into full effect out here in San Diego. What's up is down. What's right is wrong. Instead of worrying I just chill.

I was super worried when I moved out to San Diego if this would be the right place for us to start over. Upon further review. It still is. Can't say much for life other than sometimes you get the stuck with the short staff, try to make the best of it. Instead of wallowing around the city complaining about how bad everything is, I've moved on to a bigger city that has more to offer.

Recently I have been pondering this whole work thing. It's not that I don't want to work, it's I just don't care.

I let my family worry about that. The constant barrage whenever I answer the phone or talk to a relative. How's the job search? It's not bad, I haven't found anything, yet. I think I will pull a Johnny Utah, and start to learn how to become one with nature by trying to catch the perfect wave. Why not? I try to spend my days on the beaches of sunny San Diego. Every week I go down to the beach just to remind myself why I came out here. Can't beat it. It's so soothing that it makes me forget about everything that is wrong with my life.

Now the next time someone asks how the job search is going. I just smile and say it's all over because now I'm a professional surfer. I will now indulge myself into the lifestyle by adopting the native California language. Later, dudes. Tides ripping and the waves are a crashing. Here's to some tasty buds and some killer waves.

Monday, October 24, 2005

"What the hell is going on out there?" - Vince Lombardi

Yesterday I was at the store shopping for more food to stock our refrigerator at my cousin's house when I passed the liquor aisle. It had been a long time since I passed the liquor aisle and not purchased some beer or wine.

Needless to say the past previous few weeks were wearing on my like a thin sheet of dabardine.
I think we need some beer. When I moved myself down towards where the beer is stocked to mammoth proportions I distinctly remembered my brothers warning me about the inflation of beer prices in California.

"Man it's almost as bad as filling the car up with gas," my younger brother once mentioned.
"I don't know whether to run out of gas or run out of beer? What's more important?" he questioned.

This initial shock of price gouging was worse than the time I went to the movies the first time and paid full price not student price. "You want how much for two tickets. Shit I might as well sell a kidney to go see Doom.

I looked fearlessly at the prices of beer. No shock what so ever. Just typical California sticker inflation of 40-50 cents. I remarked to my wife that if they made organic beer that people out here would finally drink beer. Since everyone out here is so health conscience and politically conscience I laugh at the organic food stores with lines backed up like Walmart checkout lines ten minutes before closing time.

That's when creative ingenuity hit me. My cousins are very big into the wine and cheese get togethers. They are constantly having these parties at each other's million dollar homes where they drink Chardonnay from Southern France and sip on Spanish Bordeaux. Last time I went to one of their parties I was the lone ranger drinking Corona's by the panic fold thinking there would be none left in a half-hour. Silly me. I was the only one drinking Corona's. At the end of the night I had to empty out a garbage bag filled with empty Corona bottles out in the recycle bin because no one else cared to share a beer. So when this lasting image of myself drinking Corona's entered my mind another image crossed it. One from back in my early adulthood years when I worked for my pop's electrical company. My uncle and I would always bust out of work early on Fridays to get some tallies and play 9 holes at the city muni golf course. That's when I decided the next time I am going to these wine parties I will be carrying my EdTV drink holder that I got at Mardi Gras and is a life saver during party functions. Never forget where you place your beer it's always around your neck. Not too mention I will be loaded down with two 32 ounces of Miller High Life tallies. That's right. The High Life. Champagne of beers. No more worrying about drinking their Corona's it'll be me and a couple of tallies sharing in the memories of yesterday. Not too mention 32 ounces of beer for 2.99 isn't a bad price. That's two beers for 4 dollars and compared in our financially crisis world we live in today, that's a down right bargain. Here's to me losing on Party, to winning five bucks on a cherry bomb picker at the local 7 eleven, and to watching the San Antonio Mudbugs or Los Angeles Komonodragons (a.k.a N.O. Saints) next season go 0-16.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

God save the King of New Orleans

I totally forgot to mention that I ended up going to my best-friend's wedding a couple of weeks ago in Boston.

He didn't talk to me the whole ride from his place to the church. There was this look of contempt all over his face. If one looked very closely they could read his lips as they muttered ever so lightly. "I hate each and every one of you." It's not that he actualy hates us, but the circumstance that we put him in was pretty predictable. First off, my buddy is the last of all his friends to get married. He was the last swinging bachelor from amongst us all. He stood in all our weddings, glaring about like Vince Vaughn did in wedding crashers. He even could recite the gospel readings from heart, and he isn't even Catholic. Still, the good-hearted man felt the pressure mounting when his last friend got engaged almost 3 years ago.

That's when the call came out. It was like a distress signal sent to headquarters letting them know there was a ship lost out in sea. My buddy told me he was engaged to be married. When? No one had the slightest clue. That is why I threw the biggest fit when he told me last year that he was getting married in the first week of October.

"Are you crazy? What have you been drinking? "
"She wants a fall wedding. That's the only time we can get the hotel."
"The Red Sox could be in the playoffs. What are we going to do?"

That was the scenario that played out for us that weekend as the Red Sox were playing the White Sox at home down 2 games. Needing a win to spark another miracle comeback we all sat around the church the night of Game 3 getting our assignments for the Batan Death March...I mean wedding ceremony that would take place the next day at the same time a possible Game 4 would start.

Another one of the groomsmen walks into the chapel. "What's the score?"
"Ah, 4-2 dah badhh guys," in a thick wicked Boston accent.
"What da' f***?" remarked another groomsmen.
"Whatda expect when it's just Manny and Papi hitting da' ball."
"Let's get this thing over with so I can see the game," another groomsmen laments.

After the rehearsal we sped violent to the dinner reception. Luck for us it was at a bar/restaurant. The last two innings 3 groomsmen and the groom stood there watching our hopes for a dramatic comeback splash by the torrent freakin White Sox.

"Atleast it's over. We don't have to worry about it tomorrow at the wedding," a groomsmen belted.
"It's just too much," the groom cried out after the last out.
"I've invested way too much time into this team to just quit. I just can't take it. Let's start drinking."

Some people say we invest too much time and energy into meaningless games. Get outta here with that crap. I love the Red Sox and I love the Saints. I will never give up on them even when they suck. That's why when someone tells me the Saints are moving to San Antonio. I just scream back, "I've invested way too much time and energy into that damn team to give up on them now." There my team forever. Unless they change there name to the San Antonio Gaylords and wear Rainbow colored outfits. Then that's it. Still they are my team. So if I win that 340 million powerball, I am buying the Saints and keeping them in New Orleans. Shit, we'll play games at Muss Bertolino playground it we have too. Nobody is going to stop me either.

Otherwise it was a great wedding, typical east coast fall wedding. Rained the entire time. My best friend got married, and became the last of the remaining soldiers to be captured alive. And as for me I have reestablish my love of for the teams with little to no hope.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Thanks for nothing!!!

I'm not talking about it anymore. It's over. Her and I don't even notice each other anymore. When someone mentions her name, I change the subject. It's not like we were ever a big item. She just came into my life and blew it to pieces. That's right. It's all over between her and I. No more worrying, no more complaining, no more anything. I sort of want the Jim Carrey total erasure from your mind like in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. But not without the Alexander Pope explanation of why it shouldn't be there anymore.

So who am I talking about. You know her as Katrina. This past weekend, I had an epiphany. I am no longer going to mention how sick I am hearing about whether my home town should be rebuilt, how bad the NOPD is treating people with a little "southern hospitality", and how bad the insurance companies are stingy mo fo's. That's it, no more. I heard myself explaining the situation to another person who could give a rats ass, or do anything to help but say atleast you got your health. I'm over that part. I'm in the pissed off part now. It's like the seventh stage of recovery.

People hear your story then shake their heads and mumble something like it's so sad. You know what's sad, is that you don't know what it's like to not have a home anymore, a job anymore, a place to see family, a place to remember the good times of your youth, a place where people reveled in the typical maddness of white linen night. I can't replace it, it's all irreplacable.
So, don't tell you know or that it's too bad or that I'm lucky to have insurance. Right now, I'd rather not have insurance.

Ranting is the only way to release this frustration. I am not telling a sob story anymore. Katrina got my life for one month, but she is not taking anymore. I'm moving on to big and better things. There is new life for me and my family. It may not be the easy way, but I know that it's going to get better with time. Dwelling on what happened is going to help me now get a job. I can tell you this though, when I get to be about 75 or 80 someone is going to have shut my ass up because I will be rambling like the old lady from the Titanic. Thanks for letting me get that off my chest. From now on, if I even have to mention her name, it will be with the letter "K". Goodbye for now "K", hope I never see or hear from you again.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

We had a pact, Jerry!!! A pact? We just shook hands. -Seinfeld

"If one day Relationship George walks through that day then Independent George, the one you know and love to hang out with, will cease to exist." - George Castanza

What to do? I spent the last month of my life scrambling around in the wake of Katrina trying to prioritize my life when in my life was fine to begin with. Still, the new unforeseen events has created ultimate turmoil in everyone's life as we know. Whether they are a distant friend/relative or a close family member in need of a place to stay. Amongst all of this craziness life went on in other places in the world. People arose to their morning slumber, read their weekly fish hacks sports guy, and drank their Pumpkin spike latte's as they proceeded to work.

This brings me to my next point. One of my best buddies from college is getting married this upcoming weekend in Boston. I had originally planned to be in the wedding with my wife and I making a vacation out of a beautiful Boston fall weekend. Well, once September rolled around all things that had to deal with things I wanted to do was put on hold. My buddy pleaded with me for weeks to abandon the trip in order to save money that we had lost due to the hurricane. I on the other hand had refused to give up on the wedding. If I was going to do anything that resembled somewhat normalcy it would be to attend a friend's wedding.

With this in mind. I booked another flight leaving from my new location heading out to Boston. With the help of my friend I am now able to save some money by crashing at his place. Once again I we feel like an old college roommate coming into town to crash on the couch, and party all weekend while disrupting the neighbors sleep patterns with my loud New Orleans accent. Now that will feel normal. Upon talking to my friend he is going through the most difficult of wedding preparations and when are they never difficult. After spending an hour coaxing him down off a ledge of chaoticness that revolved seat arrangements, party favors, place settings, and moving out of his old bachelor pad, he and I seemed resolute that our new professions would be anything that has to do with weddings. I could just see me running around planning flower arrangements for some southern debutante's wedding day. "What you want is a catcus lilly, with a slight hint of Kentucky bluegrass. Once your wedding is over you can roll it up and smoke the wibbie jibbies out of it."

It's funny when your friends get married because you suddenly realize how old you really are. It's like an age definer. I laughed and laughed as he complained about every little detail of the wedding. Smirking with a look of been there done that. The most disappionting thing about this whole wedding is that my wife and I can't make a vacation out of it. I am going to miss that. Then again I am just happy to be lucky enough to go to the wedding while others are figuring out how they are going to make it through the day. Once again, miss ya'll back home. Take care and watch out for the brown pike.

Sunday, October 02, 2005

It's Sunday and I gotta watch dem Saints!!!

Yeah, I know how pathetic I am. Sitting here wondering were can I watch the damn Saints blow another game. It's all I got right now that keeps my spirits up high even when the beer is free.

I spent most of the past two days unloading a 26' foot truck into a 10 by 20 storage unit out here in San Diego. It was a good thing my younger brother was around to help. People have a misconception about San Diego always being 70 degrees and cool. Let me state that it was warmer than that as we crammed everything we own into that unit.

"Take it off here, boss?" - Dragline
"Awright Dragline, take it off." - boss man

Saturday I returned the yellow monster of Gonzales back to Penske, and I started back to cousin Carol's place. A new residence for the O'Keefe's. As I try to remember what I used to do on Saturdays it became painstaking reminder of what seems like an eternity away from home/reality. My wife and I ended up on a walk around the neighborhood here only to be stopped by an elderly man who stood with mouth agape at the fact there were two evacuaees living on his block. I thought for a second he would scream for his wife to get the camera so he could take a picture with us to show everyone he knew that he saw a couple from New Orleans.

Saturday night we accompanied my cousin to a friend of her's birthday bash. It was there that I realized how bad it is now to be a native New Orleanian. Questions started flying at me about my hometown, like Mike Brown at a congressional hearing.

"You should never build anything below sea-level. It's just doesn't make sense. They don't insure the people of Missouri valley after they got flooded 10 years ago. Your mayor and governor really screwed up."

Everyone with an opinion on the situation seemed to explurge their life lessons upon me with an unavailed eye to the fact that I really didn't care. All that matters to me right now is getting my life back together. The city of New Orleans will survive. What I don't know is whether it will ever be the same place I remember in my heart. It's time for me to find a place to go watch the Saints game. Yeah, it's 9:30am and I am looking for a bar. What's your point?

What I wouldn't give to be sitting in my sofa chair as my brothers come crashing through the back door with a 12 pack under their arm's screaming about how that Saints defense better show up today. A pile of nachos sits in front of us as we sulk our heads at every disappionting play. The t.v. commentator's blundering every player's name on the Saints roster. My brother sreaming about how we should be listening to the radio, but the delay is too much for us to bear. As the clock ticks down to another big loss it's all good because were together. That's makes everything seem so right in the world for a Sunday.