First of all, I'd like to wish a warm and happy belated birthday to El Boto. I am sorry that I missed out on your own personal race for the cure last night, but I just wasn't in the mood to drive go karts or stand around not drinking. I hope you whipped everyone, or at the very least numbnuts, who was so full of fried rice I cannot imagine his kart even inching off the line. Now onto the business of turning a post I've tried to write several times into something funny and sort of relevant.
I've tried to write this post like three times already and it just never works, so here we go again. I drive more than probably 95% of reasonable functional adult Americans, and therefore I listen to quite a bit of music on the radio. I do manage to talk on the phone a lot, and I should probably listen to pod casts about something intelligent also, but for some reason (and this is very surprising to me) I have quite an affinity for feel good top 40 music. I don't really get it, but as they say, it is what it is. (What else could it be, really?)
Something I've noticed recently is that close to half of all new hits these day fall into the "Fuck You Breakup Song" genre. It's absurd, really. There's the Kelly Clarkson one ("Stronger"). Katy Perry has one ("Part of Me"). The Gotye one ("Somebody That I Used to Know") is one, as is, basically "We Are Young" by Fun. And the list of current billboard hits doesn't stop there; Maroon Five got in on the act "Payphone"), and I'm sure there are even more. Why are these songs so popular? I'd assume because when people hear them they feel strong and empowered. It works on me, and I haven't been through a breakup in many years. There are a few other top 40 genres that I've noticed, but this one is definitely the most dominant. You have the "Look At All This Money" genre (or as Danielle described it, "my raining pockets"). You have the Unrequited Love genre (obviously that's not just top 40). You have self empowerment anthems (like half of Lady Gaga and Pink songs). And you have "We Are Going to Have Sex and it is Going to be Awesome" songs, also. Those are pretty common. Then there are the rappers, who usually stick to one of those themes.
So the problem with this post, up until today, was that...that's really all I've got. I couldn't come up with a way to make it funny or interesting or anything (other than the raining pockets joke, which isn't even that good). But today something very, very curious happened to me and I instantly thought of this half written blog post sitting on the Interwebs just yearning to be set free into the world.
Today I got barred from the Bike.
Go ahead and read that again. Now once more, with feeling. Jesse got barred from the bike. Yup, true story, one that I wouldn't have even believed myself if I wasn't "there" for it. And by "there" I guess I mean sitting in the Commerce 40 over an hour later. The basic jist of it is the following. I haven't been going to the bike lately for a couple of reasons, one of them being the game isn't starting on time at 10am like it should, another being that it just hasn't been that good, another being the commerce 60s have been great, there are just lots of reasons. Anyway, I went in today at 10am and we got the thing fired up like 4 handed and were doing what it seems like we always have to do; sit around playing hoping some fish walk in the door. I mean, the game wasn't that bad today, but we only managed to catch one "big one" as it were. He's a pretty big one, but he also has the unfortunate characteristic of being quite an asshole. I was involved in a text conversation with Mike about how the game just wasn't good enough, even with the $15/hour, to justify skipping commerce, and he replied out loud "But this isn't typical" and he was kind of correct. At that same moment the big one was berating another player for "not respecting him" or some such idiocy and in the rhythm of the conversation I said "And then there's this," gesturing toward the guy indicating obviously but now saying "that I also have to put up with". He's just lost a pot and is already fuming at the guy who apparently smiled at him improperly and goes off on me, unsurprisingly for not respecting him because he respects everyone. I explain pretty calmly that he's made it clear that he doesn't respect me, that he thinks I'm a cry baby, and therefore I don't see why I should have to respect him. He asks if I have a personal problem with him to which I respond "yes" and that's about that.
Now, I should have just shut my mouth. I shouldn't have pushed it, I should have just swallowed another heaping spoonful of shit from yet another worthless asshole out there, upon whose ignorance and idiocy I rely to make my living. But I didn't. My tilt resistance was dangerously low; Danielle has been out of town for 4 days (which just as me all out of sorts), between my results and those of my horses I've lost something like $15K in 5 days (honestly I don't even know the number), and I just wasn't happy about the situation. So I snapped before I knew what was happening and told this guy the things I already mentioned, and then shut my mouth, acutely aware that I'd pushed it too far. You could probably see me shrinking in my chair, hoping against hope that it wouldn't happen....
He racked up and left on his blind, and I wanted to crawl into a hole and die. Even if I'd been thinking clearly I probably would not have seen this coming (this guy throws tantrums all the time), but that's no excuse. I ran the fish off the game, and that's completely unacceptable. I apologized to the table (well, to everyone but Sherri lol, whom I told "I know I made a mistake, but the last thing that's going to get me to change my behavior is...you") and eventually realized that wasn't enough. I quit the game and went to Commerce. Not a word was said to me by the floor, or my old boss, or anyone. As I walked to the cage MikeL practically yelled, twice, "Give him a few more years and he'll realize that money is more important than pride"
This is where things got kind of ugly. You see, the problem here is that I disagree with Mike on this point. He views pride as a deadly sin, I guess. Curiously greed is on that list also, but to be honest I wasn't thinking about that when I texted him to request he spare me the "dramatic religious nonsense". That...did not go over well. And I can't blame him for taking offense. I basically spit on his entire belief system, so of course he's going to be hurt. I was rushed and should not have said it. All I meant to convey was that I personally think having pride in what you do is actually very, very important. If you wake up and feel not ounce of pride about your life, well, then you're doing it wrong. Having no pride (or not enough) in my day to day activities is something that I actually struggle with mightily. I don't really provide ANYTHING useful to the world. I am a sponge, living off the weakness of others, attaching myself to a parasitic industry and eating the scraps it leaves behind in its wake of destruction. Let's be honest, the world would be a better place if nobody could gamble. But this is a America, damn it, and you can't tell people they can't gamble any more than you can tell them they can't watch porn. Anyway, apparently after I left for Commerce a discussion was had and it was in this moment that Mike probably could have defended me but instead said something like "I bend over backwards to have him in the game, to be nice to him, to make sure he comes here, and Jesse does that. It makes no sense." And that was it. My old boss makes the final decisions, and he hates me with a flaming passion, so barred I was. Mike texted me to tell me, and at first I didn't believe him. Then I realized he'd never lie about something like that, so I fired off another message asking my old boss if there was anything I needed to know, that if I were barred I'd appreciate him at least telling me so I didn't drive over there tomorrow morning. The response came back so quintessentially him that I I just laughed hysterically at my Commerce table for a full 20 seconds before packing up my chips and calling it a day.
Yes, you barred
So that's that. Curiously Mike and I have already patched things up. I don't think our relationship will ever be the same, but we aren't going to go around hating each other either. Doing so would simply be too...costly. Both in terms of energy and actual money and just everything. So we're pretty much going to view each other as inert objects for the time being, which should be easy since if things go as planned I won't be seeing him again for weeks or even months.