Archive for February, 2008

Well you can keep yo man, cuz I don’t go that route.

Posted in Blog on February 28, 2008 by trevorgregg

A buddy of mine asked me if I was going to buy a Wii when Super Smash Brothers comes out.

You’re insane, I said. That game’s gonna be the downfall of Western Civilization. An obscenity.

Come on, he replied. It’s got Mario and Luigi and Pikachu for Christsake. It’s a harmless kid’s game. A fun as hell harmless kid’s game.

He really has no idea.

In my experience, there’s some kind of immutable inverse correlation between how violent a video game is and how violent its players become. Psychologically it makes no sense, but I’ve seen it in action, time and time again.

Eight of us sitting around playing rogue spear in the dorms. I blow Brian’s head off at 300 yards with a sniper rifle. His lifeless body crumples, a fine, bloody mist filling the air where his face used to be.

“Gotcha!” I shout down the hall, goodnaturedly.

My screen goes orange. Dustin just vaporized me with a grenade. Gooey bits of bone and entrail slide down the wall, leaving trails like little red slugs.

Seconds later, he’s outside my door doing a little victory dance before running back to his room.

Gory death after gory death, we tease each other mildly. God knows how many hours I spent sneaking up behind Peter with a Desert Eagle, eager to turn his ass into bloody compost. But nobody got hurt, you know? It was all in good fun.

Good clean fun, massacring each other in cold blood till dawn.

The other end of the spectrum, though… God.

The horrors I’ve witnessed during late-night sessions of Mario Kart… unspeakable. Mild-mannered, decent men, turned into beasts, shouting and cursing at each other. There’s something about those adorable little Italians riding around on cutesy rainbow tracks that just puts fucking murder in your heart.

The vulgarities I’ve heard, I… I am not timid when it comes to the profane, but even I can not bare to repeat some of the shit that I’ve heard. It starts off slow, with comments about each other’s manhood and sexual preferences… pretty run of the mill. It escalates to threats of death and rape and ethnic cleansing. Next thing you know, you’ve just lost five races in a row to King Koopa and you’re locked in the bathroom with George’s due-tomorrow physics lab report, trying desperately to unzip and piss all over it before he can kick the door down.

Shit like that happens, you know? You can’t help it.

And Mario Kart isn’t HALF the catalyst Smash Brothers is when it comes to this aggressive behavior.

I distinctly remember visiting the Johnson house one time right after they bought a Gamecube. I walked in the door and there’s Paul, the cord from his controller wrapped around poor Kevin’s neck, strangling the hell out of him. He’d wrestled Kevin’s face down into the couch and had both knees on his back. Kind-hearted, cherubic Paul, Paul who called his mom at least once a week, Paul who couldn’t bring himself to squish a spider, was grinning like Charles Manson and literally choking the life out of Kevin.

“You smell like a Jew.” He hissed through his teeth into Kevin’s ear.
“You hear me, you shit? You smell like a Jew. And now you’re gonna die.”

Miraculously, Chris and I managed to pull Paul off before Kevin suffered any permanent damage, aside from a gnarly scar on his trachea and a small dent in his Adam’s apple.

We tied Paul up to the dishwasher with zip ties while we debated calling the police. In between bouts of crying and moaning, all Paul would say was “He kept picking Kirby. I hate Kirby.”

Such ugliness over a child’s game, man. I can’t explain the phenomenon, I can only testify to its existence and hope you people take care. Brian, armed with a pellet gun and a nine iron, chasing me into the street at four AM just because I’m unstoppable with Samus is something you remember for the rest of your life.

Unbelievable.

———

Also, I’m writing a letter to Ralph Nader regarding his entrance into the presidential fray. So far all I have is:

“Dear Mr. Nader,

What the fuck?

Sincerely,
Trevor Gregg”

Too wordy?

-T.

Let me go home, whiskey.

Posted in Blog on February 21, 2008 by trevorgregg

It’s been a week of strange occurrences and abnormal happenings. All manner of weirdness and impossibility seems to have blown into town on the cold and dirty wind. Fucking February.

The old Jewish lady that sells plastic orchids and unregistered handguns out of the back of her van down on Jones waved hello to me and smiled, instead of her customary “FACKOFF”. I got a letter from a dude I know in Samoa who I thought was dead. Turns out he’s not. I saw three men in board shorts walking Shetland ponies around Union Square in the rain.

Last night was the icing on the cake; walking through Berkeley under an eclipsed moon, I poked my head into a bar long enough to see Barron Davis single-handedly defeat the Celtics with one bazillionth of a second left.

Celestial events, erratic behaviors, and the risen dead I can handle, but you know Heaven and Earth are in for some serious freakishness when the Warriors beat Boston.

——-

Jolene and I wandered into a pub somewhere in the TL on Sunday night. We had time to kill before a movie. The place was deserted except for the bartender and two eastern european dudes eating at the bar and flirting with some hideous, chain-smoking tourist.

How old are you, I heard one ask.

Twenty-three, she said. A little beer shot out my nose and I choked loudly. Twenty-three my pale, jaded ass. Twenty-three during the Reagan administration. Homegirl looked like an elephant seal in a Gap sweater.

The place was nearly pitch dark, but as my eyes adjusted, I realized all of the windows were immaculate, ancient-looking stained glass. I’m not talking kitschy, Academy of Art stained glass, I’m talking removed-from-a-window-piece-by-piece-and-stored-in-a-bunker-during-the-Blitz stained glass. Every single ornate, gothic window portrayed a different religious scene.

Now they decorate a bar in the Tenderloin.

I picked up my beer and wandered deeper into the empty place. Huge, 10×12 paintings with gilded frames hang on the walls, severely darkened with age and abuse. For whatever reason the settings, the backgrounds of the pictures fade faster than the subject, making the walls look like they’re populated with the floating ghosts of various long-dead white men.

Towards the rear, I found a door leading downstairs and ended up in a chapel-like area. Two gas lamps lit the small room, and on the wall were six icons. Saints, rendered in the same austere, symbolic style as the windows upstairs, their hands folded in benediction and their faces empty and serious, venerable.

I turned up one of the lamps and looked closer. Jolene crept down the stairs behind me.

Wait a fucking second.

Saint Charles Bukowksi, freak poet.
Saint Janis Joplin, with too much hair and a terrifying grin.
Saint Kurt Cobain, on a black background.
Saint Hunter S. Thompson, a cigarette in each hand.
Saint Shane Macgowan, of the Pogues.
Saint Jim Morrison, shirtless as always.

“Holy shit, what is this place.” Jolene said.
We stared, awestruck.
“This is the greatest thing I’ve ever seen.”
“I know.”
“This is amazing. There are no words.”
The saints looked back with the silent severity one expects from the beatified.

What can you say to something like that, you know? We drank our beers, and marveled, leaving out the back door without another word.

If you’re out there, whoever it is that painted the beautiful icon of St. Kurt of Aberdeen…

I salute you.

———

The rain is back, the wind blows hard as ever. It’s like winter just took a minute, a short break to catch her breath, and now she’s ready for more.

I should get home.

Instinct tells me it’s gonna be another long night.

My Maserati does 185

Posted in Blog on February 13, 2008 by trevorgregg

SOAPBOX TIME, FUCKWITS:

If there was any question beforehand, let me just reiterate that the United States has the best legislature money can buy.

There’s nothing that inspires patriotism and loyalty to The Regime like senators who will fuck over their constituents in plain sight. I’d like to say it’s their fault but that’s not really how it works, now is it? You can’t blame politicians for being myopic and self-serving and eternally fucking vile in every way any more than you can blame a dog for wiping its ass on the carpet.

Sure it sucks, but it’s their nature, you know? They don’t know any better.

Unless you teach them.

Dogs will piss on your floor, kids will crap in their shorts, and elected officials will act despicably. The burden falls to us to learn them the error of their ways with whatever regimen of corporal punishment and negative reinforcement we find works best.

That’s right shitbags, it’s Personal Responsibility Time!

Repeat after me:

“It is my fault that all of this fucked up stuff is happening, mine and nobody else’s. I continue to vote for these tards, and continue to sit idly by while they lie, cheat, torture and abuse the citizenry.

I sincerely apologize for being so lax in my duties and promise to be more vigilant in the future, lest my perpetual fucking stupidity ruin things for countless generations of my descendants and allow my country to devolve into a police state. I suck at democracy and am sorry.”

And you tuned in hoping I would just tell you some funny story about drinking and shit.

Silly reader.

——–

What particular burrs got under my saddle this week?

So fucking many, man. And it’s only Wednesday.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/02/12/AR2008021201202.html?hpid=topnews

http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20080212-democrats-fail-to-block-telecom-immunity-provision.html

http://blog.wired.com/27bstroke6/2008/02/the-aclu-calls.html

Way to step up to the plate with that No Vote, Hillary. Keep tip-toeing down that yellow line in the middle of the road.

——-

http://consumerist.com/355713/house-passes-bill-that-would-require-colleges-to-practice-network-filtering

It’s the colleges’ fault our antiquated and supremely fucked up IP system is collapsing! Thank god our hired Senators can legislate the genie back into the bottle.

——-

And the kicker:

http://thinkprogress.org/2008/02/13/mccain-waterboarding-fail/

Everybody who voted for it should be waterboarded. Just, you know, for some perspective.

——-

I sat down today with the intention of writing some brief, articulate, evenhanded explanations of what each of these means to you and me, but after a couple sentences it just turned into something like SHITSHITSHITSHITASDERLSKDFLKSDFKLFHATEFUCKHAAAATE.

Smashing my face into a bloody, enraged mess against my keyboard probably won’t illuminate the situation much, so you’ll just have to interpret the articles yourself, I suppose.

Like a big boy.

——-

In a way it’s almost inspiring to see our Rulers coming together, Democratic and Republican, crossing party lines and putting their differences aside. Look at them all working hand in hand, united, to really stick it to us in defense of corporations and fascism and oppression.

Motherfuckers.

——-

Man nothing puts me in a shit mood like current events. It’s depressing as hell; every time I read the news it’s like finding out a friend has died, or that I’m moving to Cleveland.

It ruins my day every time. And I read it every day.

-T.

Used to be a wise man, but that woman she made me a chump

Posted in Blog on February 11, 2008 by trevorgregg

I wake to cold tiles and the taste of stale bile. I’m slumped against a white door, and my phone won’t stop ringing. I recognize this bathroom. I live here. Good. That’s a good sign.

There’s blood on my ripped jeans and I’m not wearing a shirt. Hmm.

My phone keeps on chirping, eternally enthusiastic. Fucking thing.

Jesus christ it’s bright in here.

I think today is my birthday.

Chirp chirp chirp goes the phone.

“Hello?” I whisper, head hung between my knees.
“HAPPYBIRTHDAYTREVOR!!”

I knew it.

“Hi Maryam. What time is it?”
“It’s one! Happy birthday! Are you so so excited?”
“So so excited.”
“How old are you now?”
“Forty-three.”
“Haha. You look pretty good for your age. How do you pull it off?”

She might think differently if she could see the pale, shivering wretch curled up on the bathroom floor. I hold the phone away and dry heave once, painfully.

I pick up the phone again. Expectant silence.

“Clean living, sweetheart. Clean living.”

I hang up and slip back into unconsciousness.

———–

Twenty-six years old today. How the hell did that happen? Snuck right the fuck up on me. Blindsided me.

I never had a chance.

I know thirty waits just on the other side of this door, slavering, licking its sick, yellow fangs. I can hear it pacing, growling and snorting around in the hallway outside the bathroom. Greedy, starving, cloven-hoofed thirty.

Right the fuck there. Just outside.

God help me.

————

I wake again, this time in bed, tangled and trapped in the sheets. I check the back of my head to see if there’s a hatchet lodged in my skull, perhaps an icepick. Nope.

Guess it just feels that way.

I look out the window. Another bright, cloudless February day in SF. Sixty-five and no wind.

What a nightmare.

I dress and trudge to the front room, a mug of water in my trembling hands. I look like a concentration camp survivor, victim of some horrific Nazi tequila experiment.

“Good afternoon, sunshine.” Ellie says.
I mumble incoherently and slump into a chair. I sit in silence, willing myself slowly back to life. I take sips of water, despite my protesting stomach.

Time passes. Ellie clicks away on her laptop. Blurry, opaque visions of last night swirl in my head. I clear my throat and sit up a bit. I’m a disaster.

“What a fucking night. Today is my birthday, you know.”
“I know.”
“Did we make it to Skylark?”
How many times have I asked that question in my life? Too many. Fuckin’ Skylark.

“Yep. No one else did though, except that Russian girl and that other guy. The one with the beard. The rest of them quit at The Lexington.”
“Hmm.”
“Do you remember walking home?”
“We WALKED home?”
“Do you remember them filming the Harvey Milk movie on Market?” Vacant stare. “With all the candles?”

Vague, frightening half-memories float to the surface.
“Ooooooh shit I do… that… yeah, kinda.”
“Yeah, weird night.” She says.
“You’ll have to tell me all about it some time.”
I sip my water.

—————-

We crossed onto Market at Valencia at about 2:30 in the morning. I was still trying, pathetically, to catch a cab, waving psychotically at any pair of headlights I saw. Ellie walked a few steps ahead, the picture of sobriety and composure. Huge detour signs were propped up against semi trucks. We followed the yellow line, wandering down the empty street.

I remember generators, and police motorcycles, and flashing orange lights. Quiet groups of people huddled near chemical toilets. It was eerie as a bastard.

“What the shit is all this about?” I asked, raising my hands and addressing the empty street.
“Look up there.” Ellie pointed east. Hundreds upon hundreds of silent, shuffling figures wandered down Market ahead of us, each holding a tiny, flickering candle.
“Crap! It’s some kind of… thing…”
We got closer.
“This is really surreal.” She said.
I squinted into the night, shading my eyes from a non-existent sun and watching the crowd.
“Are they… they’re all in bell bottoms and shit… OH GOD!” I shouted, throwing up my hands in boozed-out, shrieking despair. My voice echoed.
“What’s wrong?” She asked.
“LOOK AT THEM ELLIE! THE PEOPLE!” I pointed, with both hands. For effect. “Look at their clothes! It’s finally fucking happened man. We fucking fell through a hole in the space-time continuum, or something.” I slumped down on the asphalt, near to tears. “I seen this shit, man. On the TV. Fucking happens man. All the time.”
“Trevor, what are you talking about?”
“DO YOU SEE their shit man? Look at these road signs, these billboards! It’s the seventies! We fucking fell backwards in time! FUCK man.”
“Calm down Trevor. Please.”
“Fucking bullshit, man. Fucking seventies! IT’S MY BIRTHDAY THIS IS NOT FAIR.”

A tight-jeaned, leather-vested passerby ran over towards us, blocking our path. He had a small coiled wire hanging from his ear, Secret Service style.

“Oh shit.” I said, getting back to my feet.
“You guys don’t belong here. You can’t go this way.”
“What’s going on?” Ellie asked.
“You guys aren’t dressed right.” The guy said. “You need
“EXCUSE ME.” I interrupted. “Listen man this is going to sound crazy, but she and I, we’re from the future. I know, I know, man, but it’s true!”
“You guys don’t have the right clothes, you have to go back.”
“We’ll just” Ellie started to say. I interrupted.
“I KNOW MAN! This is how they dress in the future! Believe me, we just want to get back, man. We can’t live here with all you coked out disco freaks. I just want to go home man.”
“You guys just go up around the block.” The guy said, glaring angrily, hands on his hips.
“Ok.” Ellie said, dragging me off by my sleeve.
“It’s my birthday.” I explained to no one in particular. “I’m too wasted to deal with this weirdness.”

We stumbled off into the night, stopping to rest on the stone steps of City Hall.

—————

There’s a lot riding on twenty-six. Think of all the greats that have died at 27.

Hendrix. Cobain. Joplin. Morrison.

Fucking Robert Johnson.

Guess I better get busy being awesome. Time is desperately short.

Die young or live forever, right? Anything else seems like such a cop-out.

-T.

Trying to convince me that they really really care

Posted in Blog on February 7, 2008 by trevorgregg

Rage subsides, like always.

It’s replaced by a murky, heavy disdain.

People obey their greedy, black, shriveled hearts as they have since time immemorial. They disappoint without fail. One step forward, fifteen steps back.

But fuck it, you know?

That’s why god created fatalism.

———-

“Whatcha reading?” She asked me. This is why I don’t go outside.

The book says THE ROAD on the front, in giant red block letters. By Cormac McCarthy.

“A book called The Road. It’s by the guy who wrote All the Pretty Horses. Do I know you?”

“No. That was my not-so-subtle way of introducing myself.”

Ah, gotcha. She waited for me to say something.

“Ah, gotcha.”

“What’s it about, your book?”

“A father and son, going on a journey together.”

“Oh yeah? That sounds nice.”

“Yeah not really. There’s murder, starvation, despair… depravity, suicide. Nuclear winter.”

“Sounds like a fun book.”

“Cannibalism too. Lots of cannibalism.”

“Seriously?”

“Seriously. Tons of cannibalism. Probably the most cannibalism I’ve ever seen in a book.”

“Huh.”

“Yeah. They cook a baby at one point. It’s like Lord of the Flies without the sense of humor.”

Lord of the Flies has a sense of humor?”

“Compared to this it does.”

“Yeah. Well, enjoy your… book.”

“See ya.”

Poor girl probably thought I was just an asshole.
She’s probably right. There really is a ton of cannibalism though. And they do cook a baby.

Be sure to recommend it to your book club.

-T.

Whoopee, we’re all gonna die

Posted in Blog on February 6, 2008 by trevorgregg

Congratulations, America.

You fucking idiots. You sons of bitches.

I seriously, and I mean bottom-of-my-heart needle-in-the-eye honest, hope you all starve when our economy collapses. Starve.

I hope each and every one of you wearing a Hillary sticker is forced to eat your children while you’re burning piles of devalued twenty-dollar bills for warmth in winter.

The more poll results roll in, the deeper I sink into drink and homicidal depression. Because of you. This is your fault. Thank purple roosevelt jesus I was at capoeira for the last two hours and am too thus too tired to go on my machete-wielding murder rampage.

You fucks.

Don’t you bitches know that she voted for the war? Don’t you know she’s pro-censorship? Don’t you know her ‘national healthcare plan’ is a complete clusterfuck nightmare? Don’t you FUCKING READ ANYTHING EVER?

No, of course you don’t. But you damn well exercised your franchise anyway.

I would love national healthcare. I would also love my own Jessica Alba clone and a fucking skateboard made of diamonds. But at some point you have to be realistic. You have to prioritize, to think about what changes will do the most good. For yourself and your countrymen and your children.

Please.

———-

For the last decade or so, Fucking Ourselves In The Ass has surpassed our other two passions, baseball and frivolous lawsuits, to become our undisputed national pastime. That is the ONLY way to explain the Current State of Things.

At every turn, you choose poorly. Every time. Without fail. You base THE MOST important decision you will make this year on soundbites, reputation, and rumor.

If you put one one-hundredth of the effort into choosing your politicians that you do into choosing your fucking fantasy football drafts, America would be a gilded, glistening utopia, filled with old-growth forests and naked supermodels.

But you don’t.

And every day, we sink deeper into the shit.

Because you’re a tard.

——

I don’t have any particular love for Barack Obama. Based on his voting record, his policies, I think he’s a decent senator. He’s charismatic, uncreative, and inexperienced. As a president, at least he wouldn’t attack Iran and bleed our shitty economy dry with inept social programs. At least he’d slow down the demise of our personal rights, at least he wouldn’t be despised by half our country. He might not be anything special, but fuck, he certainly sucks WAY LESS than Hillary does.

Complete the arrow next to your choice of the least of the following evils.

This is the essence of American democracy.

———-

I can’t believe you did this to me again.

COME THE FUCK ON.

Your incompetence, your apathy, your ignorance, your god damn avarice…

It’s killing me.

A girl at dinner asked me why I started yelling and slamming my hands on the table when I saw the results on CNN.

“Are you fucking joking?”

“No…”

“I’m enraged because this fucking shit matters, man. This shit is serious. Don’t you care?! The precedents fucktard Bush has set will be the bane of this country for the next hundred years. Your fucking great grandchildren will be paying the price for his eight years. No exaggeration.

I’m enraged because for one fucking sliver of a second I made the mistake of thinking the democrats might come through and pick somebody who isn’t a complete fuck to run our nation, somebody who might undo a least a little of Bush’s damage.

I’m enraged because picking between Hillary and McCain is like being asked to choose which of my balls to saw off with a steak knife.”

“Hillary’s not that bad, come on…”

“SILENCE. You are obviously and completely ignorant. Get thee behind me, you ignorant shit.”

Tonight is no night to go easy on friends.

———–

If McCain gets elected, we pour another trillion dollars into Iraq, then invade Iran. Unilaterally.

If Hillary gets elected, we spend a bunch of time and money on bloated, spineless social programs. We also pour another trillion into Iraq.

She fucks up our country even worse, and the backlash is such that we get another eight years of Christian fundamentalism and warmongering in the White House when she loses the 2012 election.

GOD DAMMIT.

———-

Ladies: you really dropped the ball today.

This was no time for white chick solidarity. I would like a woman president too, but the welfare of our nation takes precedence over your desire to see some sexual variety in the Oval Office.

Way to go, girls.

———-

Well fuck now it’s 2 AM on a weeknight and I’m drunk and very, very angry.

Fuck.

You all suck.

So America is fucked.

The downward spiral is picking up speed.

I think I can almost see the bottom from here.

I am filled with despair and disgust.

Oh well.

At least the Patriots lost.

-T.

http://www.votesmart.org/
http://thinkprogress.org/
http://www.csmonitor.com/