I think I was a little hard on my girlfriend yesterday. We both feel bad.

Been abusing my blood pressure this week by watching the RNC. How does Zell Miller speak without moving his arms? He must not be Italian. Nope, never met an Italian named Zell. Giuliani and Pataki (Italians both) disappointed me with their corny speeches. Missed Ah-nuld and Laura Bush. And Dick Cheney didn’t mention the letter I wrote him? Didn’t he read it?

I’d never seen a blizzard in New York in August, but that was quite a snow job.

Now for beer.


It’s hot here again. Spent my day off running errands. I bought another watermelon, too.

I slept in for the first time all summer (10 AM is sleeping in for me; the day’s half over at noon, right?). I’ve not been sleeping much at night, then crashing for a couple of hours when I get home. Which means I’m up in the middle of the night when there’s nothing to do.

Read “Angels and Demons,” by Dan Brown. He’s the guy who wrote “The Da Vinci Code.” Found it entertaining, and not much more. I don’t read a lot of fiction (my last book was “The 9/11 Commission Report;” woo-ha!), and it takes more than a lot of cliches to impress me. One of the characters actually said, “So we meet again.” Unbe-freaking-lievable. Next up, “Fast Food Nation.” Maybe “The Da Vinci Code” another time.

Now to decide what to do tomorrow.

On watermelon

I just polished off the second half of a watermelon I bought yesterday. Am I a pig or what? Nah, it’s my birthday. Then again, it was a seedless watermelon. Maybe I am an animal after all. I think there is more aesthetic value to a seedful watermelon. The black seeds on the red fruit look more exciting. A seedless watermelon is just an unbalanced force that needs to be crushed.

Last summer I had a true Mississippi moment: I bought a watermelon from my barber. He was selling them out of the back of his pickup truck. Yeah, barber-truck watermelon…

Whoa! This car has three pedals!

I became a man today. I started learning how to drive a manual transmission. Something I’ve wanted to do for a long time. My family never had a car with a stick, so I never learned. A friend offered to teach me in his truck. Hitherto, I was often very shy about asking friends to help me, because I don’t want to be like, “Hey, can I ruin your transmission for my betterment?” I’ve also been thinking about buying a piece-of-junk car to practice on. If I can’t, then formal driving lessions are out. Consider an actual conversation with a driving school instructor:

“I’d like to learn how to drive a manual transmission.”

“And I’d love to teach you. Do you have a car with a stick?”

“I don’t.”

“Neither do I! If you can get one I’ll teach you.”

So far, I’ve only been starting, stopping, and stalling (though with less frequency) in first gear; and a little of second. But it’s a start, and I believe in starts (from “The Committments”).