I've also noticed that surfing the web on a 33.6 Kilobaud modem isn't that much slower than doing so over a T1 line. In some cases, it's actually faster than surfing the web at UVA, where the T3 is habitually overloaded. Beyond that, the Internet itself is such a bottleneck that there isn't much to be gained by having a fast local connection.
I was up early this morning, working on the musings, surfing the web, listening first to music and then to National Public Radio's Weekend Edition. With all due respect to Jesse Helms and anti-intellectuals everywhere, I love that show. It's one of those good habits I picked up from my Dad, who is a news junkie.
I napped until about 2pm, almost as if I'd been at work all last night. For strange scheduling reasons, I didn't have to work my normal Saturday shift; it had been moved back eight hours.
The Dodge Dart and I went up 29 North to K-Mart, where I bought a super-duper surge protected power strip for my computer and a four way cable splitter for the video card. It's looking like I'm going to be watching cable teevee on my computer screen. That's probably a bad thing, but there's this weird force in me, call it Taurus Rising if you like, that demands that I take advantage of a possession's every feature.
As I stood in line at the K-Mart, I had another wonderful opportunity to check out the sort of humanity of which America is largely comprised. Weight seems to be a real problem out there, even among teenagers. Genes keep screaming to these people that a famine is about to descend, so they munch on high-calorie junk food and, whenever possible, stay inactive in their burrows, occasionally mustering enough effort to spawn another of their kind.
Two sorority girls were behind me in my line, and they looked like the only people in the store who hadn't ever seen the inside of a mobile home. One of these girls was, like me, also buying a power strip. She was discussing the features with her friend. "What's the circuit breaker for?" she asked, almost rhetorically. Then, reading further, she answered herself, "Oh, it's to prevent circuit overload. That's a good thing!" It's times like that when I realize the potential manufacturers have to manipulate consumers. If I were to ask the girl what exactly circuit overload is, I doubt she'd have an answer.
At Barracks Road, I picked up a half gallon of vodka for my own purposes. The hope is that I can come home from work, make myself a couple of vodkateas, and then post some fucked-up messages in the diary-l mailing list so I can wake up and regret them on Sunday morning.
The guy I was relieving at Comet is an extremely heavy smoker. I won't say anything too bad about him, since he occasionally reads these musings. Suffice it to say, however, that during his shift his musty stale cigarette smell manages to flavour this place with a horrible ersatz split-pea type odour that requires acclimation and hurts my productivity. He evidently smokes in the men's room, which is a definite no-no. I can't use that bathroom at all after one of his shifts, so it's a good thing there's a women's room. I've always wondered what makes smokers so oblivious to how badly they reek.
I was hungry during my shift, so I went down to Little John's nearby to get an Italian sub. While I was in there, a fairly large contingent of Chaz supporters came in. For those new to our story, Chaz is a little wanna-be skinhead tough guy who is very upset about the fact that I've been exposing his reign of retardation here on my website. Evidently Chaz is a charismatic figure to a certain group of bored Charlottesville youth, because his supporters routinely make fools of themselves in his defense. Well, tonight when they saw me, a couple of them started making their usual creatively insulting remarks. The best they can do in that department is utter the word "faggot."
After I had my sub, they followed me out onto the street and started bothering me about their "brother" Chaz. The most vitriolic of these guys was a short blond dude who, believe it or not, took off his shirt right there on the street and challenged me to fight him. He had a tatoo across his right breast. But when I wouldn't give him the satisfaction, he said some tough things and disappeared. The other, skinnier guys then started getting all tough, pressing their chests against me and what not. One of them suddenly knocked my sub out of my hand in some kind of display designed to showcase his toughness. Then the other started shoving me. That was it. I reached for my mace and started blasting. I think I did a pretty shitty job of it, since the more aggressive of the two only became angrier, socking me in the nose. It didn't really even hurt, though now it feels a little funny.
I was mostly upset about losing the sub. In my irrational hypercharged state, I considered demanding a new one from Little Johns, where many of the employees are friends with the thugs who attacked me.
I went into the Espresso Corner and washed the mace off my hands. Then I found a police officer and told him what had happened, and he took notes on a little pad. One concerned citizen was riding around on his mountain bike trying to track down my aggressors, who, word had it, had escaped down 14th Street.
I suppose all that excitement was worth the price of the sub.
I passed out on the couch.
one year ago
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