Far Beyond Sick Day

I stayed home sick today. I suddenly got this thing Wednesday morning that made me instantly tired and unable to focus, the kind of thing that only sleep could cure. I thought maybe going to bed when I got home yesterday and sleeping ten or eleven hours would do it, but it didn’t. So I slept most of today and had a lot of weird dreams. I had a dream that I was given three wishes, like in a movie or something, and I asked the angel or faerie or whatever it was if I could chain together a lot of multiple similar statements using semicolons or something, and she said fine. I carefully worded the first wish to include every major and minor medical malady currently afflicting me. It was weird because I was pissed about spending all of this money recently on the dentist and then throwing away all of it to get a set of magically perfect teeth. I also debated on whether or not to include whatever chemical issues are in my brain which are medical, wondering if I would have a Twilight Zone moment and cure any mood issues but also become so well-adjusted that I’d never be able to write anymore. I don’t remember getting to the other wishes.

I started reading the nearest book to my bed this afternoon between naps, and it’s one I got for free from Marie about some writer from the New Yorker who becomes somewhat addicted to the stock market and chronicles his rise and fall during the period a few years ago when the tech market was insanely high. The book is interesting in a sense, although the guy is a total dickhead and exactly the kind of person that personifies New York in the way that I hate. I mean, he lives in a 1.6 or 1.3 million dollar apartment, and when him and his wife decide to separate, instead of one moving or both selling the place, they get two separate apartments, and keep the kids (who are in their late teens – we’re not talking about traumatizing developing toddlers or whatever) in the big upper west side place, and take turns living in the big house or their two respective apartments. So that is THREE apartments, and I’m certain that either of the two bachelor/ette shacks are probably twice as nice as my shithole and cost twice as much. So why am I supposed to trust the investment advice of this schmuck? Here’s some investment advice for him: dump the bitch and sell the house. When the kids go to college, they won’t be alienated because they are the only ones with parents still married to each other.

Speaking of apartments, I’m fighting the too-hot/too-cold war here. This place seals up like a thermos, so it gets way too warm in here when the heat kicks in, but it’s not the right weather to start opening up windows, either. I can manage to balance the place to a comfortable level for a half hour or hour, but then it goes the wrong way. I was reading an article a few weeks ago about how traditional Japanese houses work, in that they have almost no insulation, and the family basically huddles together around a small charcoal stove that’s hidden in a pit in the floor. So it really changes the social dyanmic of the family, because everyone is sitting nose to nose around a damn Weber grill or whatever, but people are used to that, and most old-school Japanese people would think Ray Miller’s house is a damn sauna. (For those who don’t know, Ray keeps his house at a constant 68 degrees. Kelvin.)

Speaking of Ray, it appears that “Dimebag” Darrell from the band Pantera got shot and killed on-stage at a Ohio show last night, along with a handful of other people. The gunman was taken out by a quick-thinking cop, before a hostage was also plugged. What’s weird is that this happened on the anniversary of when John Lennon was killed, not that I would consider Pantera and the Beatles to be in the same ball park or even the same sport. Anyway, back in the day, Ray HATED Pantera. I somehow missed the whole thing, but Ray worked in a record store and had to deal with their fans regularly. The deal is that Pantera was a glam-metal band like Poison or Cinderella back in the day, except instead of being guys that looked like chicks because of the makeup, they were really ugly guys that didn’t quite look like chicks, unless you spent a lot of time trying to get laid in the bathrooms on the Jersey turnpike. So they never were that popular, and played the bar circuit in Texas and sold albums out of their car for a while.

One day, they dropped the glam look and tried to go for this “tough guy” image, adding catchy riffs and moshpit-inducing style to their music. It was one of those right-place/right-time things (it being like the very early 90s) and all of a sudden, they were the next big trend. They talked about smoking a lot of pot and they all had a bunch of tattoos and they were badasses, especially if you asked any of their loyal fans about them. And of course, Ray (and many other Death Metal people) hated Pantera, because it was just a big huge gimmick, and the music was repetitive and nowhere near as brutal as underground bands, and they were basically The Monkees with tattoos. Ray even made up these flyers that basically told the “real” story behind the band, how Dimebag Darrell used to be Diamond Darrell and wear spandex and eye liner and sing songs like “Ride My Rocket”. Even the band got pissed about people dredging up their past, and refused to acknowledge their albums before 1990’s _Cowboys From Hell_.

Pantera was an annoyance, moreso to Ray than me. I stopped following metal around the time they hit their peak, with the 1994 debut-at-#1 album _Far Beyond Driven_. They were always in the news, and Ray always hated them, but it didn’t bother me that much. When I heard about the shooting today, it was weird, but it takes a lot to faze me these days. I never would have wished death by lead to any of their members; I was hoping the slow road to smaller and smaller venues and then maybe a job cleaning hulls at a boat shop or loading trucks at a guitar store would be more acceptable.

And that’s all. My soup-based dinner didn’t seem to be enough, so I should rummage around the kitchen before ER starts in 15.


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