Friday, December 30, 2005


the main switch is thrown. 
electrons surge through wire veins.
existence begins.

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Byte Me

Because I've been reading Isaac Asimov's I, Robot, and because I've been listening to one of my favorite songs, and because of this blog post, I have started to write a series of poems (haikus to be exact) about a robot.

Yes, that is as stupid as it sounds. I've written a poem about a robot before, and it seems to fit the theme of some of the haikus I'm working on, but collectively, this series of poems is more like a narrative about the life of a robot. But don't worry, I'm not taking this whole thing too seriously.

Really, I'm just having fun writing them, and I need something to keep me busy while I'm at work. So, be prepared for the barrage of bad poetry that will ensue.

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Thursday, December 29, 2005

Scott Erke

I believe it was my junior year when Scott Erke died. He killed himself. He skipped school one day and sat in his closed garage with his car running for so long that he asphyxiated, inhaling fatal amounts of carbon monoxide. Rumor has it that he turned the car off right before he died, leading some to believe that he tried to stop his slow suicide, but that it was already too late. I think he was just being courteous.

I don't know why I took Scott's death so hard. I barely knew him. I had only talked to him a few times. Actually, he didn't talk much at all, just listened and grinned out of the corner of his mouth. We had mutual friends, but never hung out with them at the same time. Both of our little sisters were best friends, but we had little else in common.

I suppose I reacted less to his death and more to the way people talked about him after he died. People pretended to care so much more about him now that he was gone, when, if they had showed even a fraction of that caring to him when he was living, he might still be alive.

I remember seeing Scott's sister, Kara, and my sister talking and crying shortly after the news got around town. They were both crying. Then Kara inhaled deeply and wiped her eyes, repeating a mantra, "I'm not going to cry. I'm not going to cry." That's when I felt most sorry for her. I remember other people crying, too, other people who probably didn't know him very well and just wanted to cry about something. I remember my sister talking about them with disdain and saying that they didn't deserve to cry.

I wrote a letter the day after Scott died. It wasn't to anyone; it was just a letter to vent my feelings. I wrote in the letter how I felt bad for his family. I wrote that I hated the phrases "cry for help" and "warning signs." I wrote that I knew what feeling all alone was like. I wrote that I wished I had gotten to know him better. I wrote that I was angry that those closest to him didn't somehow see it coming; they must have suspected something! I wrote that I was angry that suicide was the only way Scott could feel safe.

I wish I still had this letter to read now. I don't remember all of what it said. The only thing that I remember verbatim is how it started, "I killed Scott Erke," and how it ended, "We all killed Scott Erke." I cried after I wrote it, even though I didn't deserve to.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Grandma Mimi

I remember walking into the dining room with some toy in hand and seeing my mother sitting alone at the dining table, head bowed between her hands. I can't remember if she was crying, but I knew that she was upset. I circumnavigated the table and sat on the floor next to her chair. I began to absently play with my toy, hoping that she would comfort me. I don't know why I thought the upset one should be the one to comfort the content one. Perhaps I empathized with her emotion. Or perhaps I was just too inexperienced with the comforting process to realize that it could be transmitted both ways, from parent to child and from child to parent. Nevertheless, I knew something was wrong and I did not want to leave until it was resolved.

"What's wrong?" I looked up and asked my mother.

She didn't look at me. I remember she took a long pause (or what seems like a long pause to a four-year-old) before answering, "My mother is dead." I didn't know what that meant.

I only remember the funeral and the reception in (probably inaccurate) snippets. I don't remember whether the event with my mother in the dining room took place before or after it, though. I do remember wearing a suit or at least a tie. I remember staring at a mounted deer head. I remember a lot of adults talking to each other, and no one paying attention to me. I remember asking to look inside the casket several times, each time being told "no."

For some reason, I don't ever remember being sad.

Thursday, December 22, 2005


This semester has been busy, but that is no excuse for having neglected my duty and privilege as a blogger: inundating you with worthless knowledge about my relatively insignificant life. So, here's some highlights from this semester:

  • I got a new job as a kitchen employee at Hy-Vee, the local grocery store. I don't really care for the job too much. I still work at the Language & Literature Division Office. I'm working there over Winter Break, in fact.
  • I dressed up as a zombie dressed up as a bunny for Halloween. I was bartender at Choose Your Poison, my fraternity's annual costume party, for a couple hours. During those couple hours I drank approximately enough "poison" to choke a donkey. Afterwards I apparently ended up tackling too many people and wouldn't stay standing up. The Magster, dressed as a hobo, made me go to bed. I puked.
  • I read a couple of books that I liked: Ishmael, Possession, and a classic from my childhood A Castle in the Attic
  • I put my resume online; I've begun the job search. I've already applied to a couple places, but most employers don't want me begging for a job until February or March.
  • I killed a man with my bare hands.
  • I participated in Tour de Franzia, drinking over a liter of boxed wine. At some in the night I remember getting into a wrestling match with a blind guy. Later, I puked.
  • I decided to recap for you what you missed this semester on my blog.

I'm sure much more happened, but I can't think of anything else important right now. I'll try to start updating more regularly again, though.

Monday, December 05, 2005

I Wish I Was a Droid

"Sir, if you'll not be needing me, I think I'll shut down now."

Circa Now