Dispatches, thoughts, and miscellanea from writer Jon Konrath

Too cold to think

It is too cold to think. To get to work today, I wore two pairs of pants, an army jacket, a leather jacket, a hat, a hood, and a pair of gloves. I was still so cold I couldn’t breathe. My apartment has been in spats of hot and cold; the heater runs but sometimes bangs like Godzilla is in the basement and trying to escape via the radiator, and that worries me that the whole thing will stop working and my landlord will be in Italy for months. If so, I will light the place on fire. Also, the wind blows so hard, it blows right through the windows, no matter how much foam tape and bunched up blankets I cram into the crevices. I am slightly sick, but not a lot – maybe some kind of infection in my throat, a lump that I can’t swallow. It is getting slowly better, so hopefully more juice and water will lodge things free.

I got back on Tuesday from a pretty decent trip to Vegas. There were four of us: Bill, Lon, me, and Lon’s pal Cliff, who is a pilot for a regional airline. It was cool to talk to Cliff about planes and flying and the inside world of the aviation industry. I envy being able to fly a plane, but I don’t envy the fact that a third-year pilot makes about $20K a year. Anyway, we did a lot of cool stuff, so here’s a short list off the top of my head:

  • Went to Blue Man Group and sat in the front row (the poncho section.)
  • Ate at Emeril’s fish restaurant; had the 6-course tasting meal, which was all incredible.
  • Shot a Madsen M50 9mm automatic rifle with a silencer.
  • Rented a pimped out Caddy with leather everything, power everything, onstar, rear radar, an incredible stereo, ass-heating seats, and all the other goodies.
  • Bill found out that the Caddy has a 120 MPH cutout. It felt and sounded like we were going 60, though.
  • Ate at In-n-Out and Jack In The Box
  • Went to the Grand Canyon; threw a copy of Rumored to Exist into the canyon.
  • Went to the Hoover Dam, took the tour, found a tour guide who didn’t know what The A Team was. I made the wild sarcastic guess that she was born in 1986; she was actually born in 1984. I officially feel old.
  • Ate at Denny’s twice.
  • Went to 7-Eleven. Got a Slurpee. Did not fuck sluts. (Sorry, Ray.)
  • Went shopping at Caesar’s Forums. Bought a new pair of Vans shoes.
  • Went to Best Buy and bought a ton of new CDs and a new camcorder battery.
  • Won $40 on blackjack at Imperial Palace.
  • Went to the car museum at Imperial Palace.
  • Threw paper airplanes out of the hotel windows.
  • Got the Caddy airborne on a speedbump.
  • Went downtown and saw the Fremont Experience light show.
  • Went to the worst pawnshop ever downtown.
  • Talked to some strippers on Fremont Street.
  • Watched the movie Jackass on pay-per-view.
  • Watched the movie Undercover Brother on Bill’s laptop.
  • Ate a good breakfast at the Luxor.
  • Drank way too much at Smith and Wollensky.

That’s all I can think of. But we got a lot of stuff done from Thursday to Tuesday, and we didn’t do that much Vegas strip stuff. So I’m pretty happy with the results, except for the part about puking up a $160 dinner.

My camcorder was great on the trip, and now I have a firewire card for my PC. I installed all of the stuff on my Windows partition, and it works pretty good for editing video and pulling in stuff through the DV connection. I need to now pull in old stuff from Hi8 and make some real movies with it. I still have a lot to learn, but it’s not like I’m going anywhere this weekend.

OK, I need to do some more DV editing research. I’ll try to get back on schedule with regular updates, but my semi-hibernation isn’t helping things much.