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12/23/2004: "Jacqueline"

Greetings, devoted audience.
All four of you. (Yes, I mean you)

As yet another year winds down it's time for all that introspective bullshit. And no, I'm not going to tell you about how much I cried when Star Wars came out on DVD (tons) or how happy I was when the Yankees lost the world series (tons of tons), no no, I'll leave that for the emo kids and the indie blogs.

I was reading the first entry of this year, and it was kinda funny. I talked about not going to Sadie Hawkins (didn't happen), getting a highscore of 470 in pong (now up to 530, before they took the game down), finding money around the house (that hasn't happened in a while), fetish art (a display no longer in circulation at the museum), and licking 9v batteries (haven't done that since).

It's depressing becuase my life isn't nearly as interesting as it was 348 days ago. Sure, I'm a little older, a little wiser (right...), but I just feel less interesting. I think that's what growing up is, a rapid decay towards complete bordom. I'm doing my best to combat it, but I feel it's ultimately a losing battle. This semester I did better on my final exams than I ever have. Am I any better or more interesting of a person?

Not in the slightest.
But hey, that's life.

Should I then just be expected to sit down and take it? To follow the path that's been worn down by others before me? Or do I pull that Robert Frost bullshit, and do something different to keep myself sane and safe from the drabness of everyday life? I vote Robert Frost, but I'll be the first to admit that the road less traveled is that way for a reason.

I got a roll of film developed. There's a funny one, and some actually decent pictures from when it snowed. I'll put the funny one up on the post-Christmas/NewYears entry. And speaking of film, Sean set up a section where you can view most of our films, and some of his projects independant of myself. [Check Them Out].

The other week my work had its Annual Luncheon. It's called a luncheon becuase we have lunch and the thing lasts a god damn EON. It was ok though. Katie and I both went, so it was slightly less awkward. Good food. Weird ass company though. You will meet some of the most varied people in the Dry Cleaning industry. Which I guess makes sense, becuase if they're hiring hacks like me, other weirdos are bound to slip in.

The kicker of the entire situation was this though: The lunchEon took place at The Plant. The Plant is where all of the clothing is actually cleaned. You see where I work, we just take and dispense clothing. We have to ship it out to get it cleaned. Naturally, before this point, I'd heard a lot of things about the plant, and I'd built it up to be kind of this Mecca of clean clothes and angry assembly line workers. Half the reason I went to the lunchEon was to see the damn plant for myself.

Turns out the plant is in this run down building in Westport, closer to my house than where I acutally work. It's not really much of a Mecca, and plant people didn't seem angry. They seemed happy. Then again we were all getting free food, so I can't imagine there'd be a sad face in the bunch.

A few days later occured an important date. December 18th. Last year, Lizz and I embared on a journey, a mission, a quest, if you will. Albeit it was really none of these things (for they all required a purpose, which we lacked) it was still awesome. In the spirit of that, this year we decided we needed another adventure. This one had to be better than the last though... it had to be... epic. And nothing really says 'epic' like central Missouri...

now does it?

I don't know what made me think this was a good idea, but that's what we settled on. I told my parents I was going "shopping" and left. At 7 in the morning. When nothing but the dry cleaners is open. Half an hour drive to Lizz's house. Pick up Lizz. Go to grocery store. Here we picked up supplies (Pringles, Sweet Tarts, and Coloring books to keep Lizz quiet on the drive). Gas up the car. Reset trip odometer, get onto Southbound I-435. Southbound turned into Eastbound, and Eastbound to Northbound (it's a loop, get it?). Then we got on I-70, which Lizz's mother was convinced is the most dangerous road in all the land.

It isn't. Everyone's just kinda distracted. And understandably so. There are adds for porn shops ever other 1/4th of a mile. The most noteable is obviously Passions Adult Superstore. There are a lot of these, so watch for the monopoly suit to surface in mainstream court sometime soon. [Addicted to Pr0n?] Porn aside though, rural Missouri still sucks.

Two and a half hours later, we get into Columbia. Our destination was thus because it has MU, and college towns are fun. Quickly though, we got lost, and had to stop at a gas station and buy a map. 4 dollar map too, what a scam. It helped though, and we soon found our way to the bookstore. Here I fulfilled my promise to "shop" (therefor not lying to my parents) and bought my dad's christmas gift. We then journied out of the gift shop part of the bookstore to the book part of the bookstore.

After perousing the literature we both concluded that college is way to hard. I'm joing the circus, but Lizz can't do anything cool, so we're going to trade her in for a Sega Dreamcast and some old Pokemon cards. She actually was getting all wraped up in a biochemistry book, that is until a mocked her. She looked up and I had to hide the "Advanced Topics in Mechanics and Physics" behind my back, lest I appear hypoctritical.

So yeah, the bookstore was a hit, but we got bored after a while and left. We headed towards this church-looking thing that turned out not to be a church at all. Inside was this weird meeting hall with a giant plate of half-eaten cookies. We left quickly, so as to avoid questions about our presence near the mutilated cookie display. Next we headed for a large domed structure.

Inside we climbed up to the third floor and looked out the windows at the people below. We made fun of them for a bit, and then, being bored again, decided to leave. I wanted to use the bathroom before we left though, so I did. When I got back outside, I saw Lizz standing next to an open fuse box, with this guilty look in her eye. She explained to me that she'd opened it, and that it was loud. So I closed it quickly with a jab from my elbow. The noise reverberated up and down the hallway. We bolted.

While running away from our imaginary persuers though, we ran upstairs instead of down. This was currious, seeing as how we thought we were already on the top floor. A flight of stairs and a landing later, we were faced with a suspicious set of double doors. Making sure they wouldn't lock behind us, we cautiously continued forward into the labyrinth of dusty old computer and busted chairs. The floor was creaky, and the classrooms appeared abandoned, but we ventured further. This dusty office crap was soon replaced by mixing equipment with an 80's vintage about it. As we walked around a corner I stopped and noticed a pannel of glass, its logo catching my eye. NPR! I turn to tell Lizz that I found the door to an NPR studio just to see her rushing back from around the next corner-

Hurriedly she whispers to me that we're in a boradcasting studio and she thinks someone saw her, so we take off. Back through the mixers, the old office stuff, the weird doors, the odd staircase, the main stairwell, three sets of stairs and a big heavy door. Outside. Yum. We take some pictures, then decide that food is needed.

We ended up at this little pizza place with a guy who had a british accent. He was really nice and the pizza was so so so so SO god damn good. Then we went and saw a Series of Unfortunate Events. I thought it would suck initially, and was then impressed by the trailers, and even then my expectations were surpassed. It was a pretty quality film. After that we aimlessly drove around looking for "downtown" and after coming to the conclusion that there was no such place in Columbia, we took pictures of a Waffle House and left.

On the way home my right leg felt like it was going to die. Somehow though, we made it back to Kansas City in one piece, miraculously. I-70 didn't kill us, and we resisted all the temptations of PASSIONS, and it was indeed epic, so it was a good day. Next year I think we're going to make a break for Canada. Or some comprably foreign land. Like Iowa.

(It's Always Better At Holiday)

I was a cowboy
on the dusy trail of I-70
my steed a '97 Maxima
"Next Watering Hole in 68 Miles"


Replies: 8 Buddies Neglected Their Oral Hygine

I went to MU once. Then we got bored and went to KC.

Said [josh] on Saturday, December 25th

man, i hate columbia. its so boring. i go there every so often because my aunt lives there.
i am pretty fucking hungry, cowboy, and reading about the waffle house made it worse.

Said [r unit] on Saturday, December 25th

my Lord, tom, that was so beautiful. and that is why you are the jedi master. i bow to you.

Said [Brigid] on Sunday, December 26th

Iowa! You don't want to go there. Trust me. Nothing but country.

Said [Stephan] on Sunday, December 26th

yeah, looks like you're getting boring, tom.
I bet you've decayed to the point where you cruise for torrents of series that just have cool titles. or to the point where you'd know what i mean, or maybe it's just that i do that while you're having a blissfull adventure about central missouri.

Said [sean] on Sunday, December 26th

I guess I can't relate to all your crazy journeys. Maybe you should take a trip in the woods with minimal supplies where you can "find yourself."

I just watched your mini-movie ad for "DT FLYERS," and it was truly funny (with good background music- yes to Led Zeppelin and RHCP).

Hope your life is going well. Cheers!

Said [Annie] on Monday, December 27th

"Four Places" reminds me of The Breakfast Club for some reason. Funtimes.

Said [Annie] on Monday, December 27th

hello tom!
well, crazy stuff, I started at rachel klems xanga and ended up here, lol.
i like your blog tho...and i saw the ap chem video...funny how fast that spread.
jeez, quite an epic you had. yay for randomness!
...okay i'm done now.

Said [Rikianne] on Tuesday, December 28th