Friday, July 25, 2008


If Dark Knight was any more depressing, I'd have to start cutting myself.

(Pssst! That's a joke.)

Beyond that, it was a brilliant movie.

Monday, July 21, 2008


Work = inane.

Apartment search = frustrating.

Jeff = too old for this shit.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

This Saturday, the 19th!

Batman Begins & Gotham Knight at my place, 11 AM. Pizza will be ordered at 12:30, so get here on time! Movies will start once we have food. Feel free to bring any snacks, drinks, and significant others that you're willing to share.

Well, that was a poor wording choice. Let me try that again:

Feel free to bring your significant other (where applicable), as well as any snacks or drinks you're willing to share with the group.

If you need directions, you know how to reach me.

Friday, July 04, 2008

Gotham Knight & Dark Knight plans updated

Saturday the 19th is still on for Batman Begins & Gotham Knight at my place.

With Dark Knight @ IMAX sold out already, Sunday the 20th is right out. I'm guessing two weeks from then.

I prefer Sundays so my Jewish friend can join us, but a Saturday isn't out of the question (if he can't make it).

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Talking to Myself

I've figured out that using a date as the framing device of the book will make the biographical digressions feel disjointed. Splitting them up among conversations with a friend (I'll need to take lots of photos of each of you) and a psychiatrist (probably modeled on Freud or Jung) would make more sense.

In the mean time, here's the very first draft of another section:

Man in the Mirror (Summer 2006)

Jeff looks into a mirror.

Jeff: "Hi, we need to talk."

Mirror Jeff: "Yeah, there's never been a good conversation that began with that line. Get on with it."

"I don't want to be you anymore."


"Look, I don't deny that you've done a great deal of things for me. You've made me smarter, gotten me a bunch of good friends..."

"I've kept you alive for all these years."

"No. You've enabled my survival. But I am definitely not alive."

"What kind of existential bullshit is this?"

"When was the last time we went on a date?"

"Liz G, two years ago."

"And how did that go, exactly?"

"Not well."

"When's the last time we kissed a girl?"

"Er, does on the cheek count?"


"When was the last time we felt comfortable in our skin? Have we ever liked ourselves?"


"And how old are we?"

"On the verge of 28."

"You know that Steve Carrell movie? That's going to be us if we don't change."

"I'm not very comfortable with change."

"Oh no? Do you like feeling lonely all the time? Do you enjoy crying yourself to sleep because of it, with your arms wrapped around yourself, because no one else will hold you?"


"What do you propose?"

"For starters, we're going to try to pay attention to that gym membership we've been wasting money on."


"And maybe cut back on the Haagen-Dasz."

"The first was bad enough, but this is a kick in the balls."

"It's past time we got a hair cut. It's far long enough to donate to Locks of Love. Grow a beard, while you're at it."

"That's easy enough."

"New, smaller glasses would be a good idea, too."

"Deal. What about you?"

"I'm going to look into getting therapy. We've obviously got some emotional issues to deal with. Social anxiety, fear, depression, distrust, self-hatred, etc."

"Sounds like fun."

"We've got to get out of this shell - no, we've got to destroy this shell - because no one else is going to enter it to be with us."

"Do we really have to?"

"It beats being a smear beneath the subway trains."

"Such a sunny disposition we have."

"We're going to get through this. We'll come out stronger, and more importantly, happier."

"I can live with that."

"Good, because there isn't another option."

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

TEN MONTHS part 3: A New Hope

Part 1: Downward Spiral

Part 2: The Misery of Isolation

When Francis first started, he was asked where he was from.

"I was born in New York City, but I lived Brooklyn before I came here."

I asked, "Why the hell did you move up here?"

"To start a family."

In December, he put the office on notice that his first son would be born soon, and may have to leave at any moment. There were a few false alarms.

Joesph was finally born on December 23rd. There was much rejoicing.

Time passed, and Fran and I became better friends. The guys and I were working more on the Thunderstruck book, coming up with more ideas. At the beginning of March, I confided to Francis while he ate lunch (a baked potato, as an Irishman should).

"I need to get back to the city. This book we're working on seems like it will get off the ground. Plus, rural living is driving me insane."

The timing on this was impeccable.

"Well Jeff, I'm going down to Brooklyn in a week to visit my former landlady. She rents out rooms in her 4-story brownstone in Park Slope to Pratt students for $400/month, and I think she has a room available. Her name's Jan; give her a call and find out if it's okay for you to come down with me. I'll talk to her, too; she's like a mother to me."

The following Friday night, I went home with Francis. I got to find out just how like the Addams Family they are. And I got to play with the dogs; Jack, the gay, horny, black lab, and Riley, the sad, smaller of the two. His wife Mickey, and their son were down in Jersey visiting her parents, and would meet us in Brooklyn for the ride back up. I spent the night in the guest room, which is usually reserved for his nieces & nephews. Evidence: Mickey Mouse bedding.

We got up around 8 AM and drove down. It was the smoothest ride I'd ever had to the city. It was usually spent with my dad, who hated the drive. We'd always get lost at some point, and neither of us would have much to say. Francis on the other hand, had made the trip many, MANY times before hand. Since he's basically an older, more exuberant version of me, we had plenty to talk about; specifically comics.

Upon our arrival in Brooklyn, I was greeted by Jan, her dog Subway, and her five cats. While Francis got to work on some repairs, Jan interviewed me. Unbeknownst at the time, I was also being tested. Subway had sat in front of me, and the petting began. A few minutes later, she looked over at Jan and said, "He's good; he can stay." Jan commented, "She likes you. You're very gentle with her." My absolute adoration of doggies was then discussed.

That was really all that needed to be said. Later on, we went up to the fourth floor and took a look at the room. Despite the sickly green walls, it was perfect. Large, two windows, deep closet, a wall of book shelves.

"Do you want it?"

"Yes, please!"

Because of Francis' good word, she waived the deposit. I handed her a month's rent and said, "I'll be back in two weeks!"

A while later, I got to meet Mickey & Joe. Mickey's got the mouth of a sailor, and a hilarious one at that. She's sharp and crass; it's easy to see why so many people like her. She's the one who's obsessed with Nightmare before Christmas and doesn't care much for girly stuff. They were married on Halloween, and their song is Glenn Miller's In the Mood. They absolutely love swing dancing.

Francis warned me, "when you put in your two-weeks notice, don't let anyone know that I had anything to do with it." He was worried, and rightly so, about any repercussions for being responsible for my leaving the company.

I floated on the way home. The prospects of LIFE beginning made me ecstatic. Many phone calls were placed on Sunday.

Two weeks later, I was on a train bound for NYC. (Cue Dave Brubeck Quartet's Blue Rondo a la Turk.) Penn Station was crowded as usual that night. Carlos and his new girlfriend Tara were supposed to meet me. Tara and I hadn't met yet, but she found me first. This being the first time I'd met any of Carlos' GFs, I knew there was something special here. They helped me with my luggage and escorted me to Brooklyn so they could check out the place. When we got there, I couldn't unlock the door; I'd suddenly become retarded. I called Jan, and she came up to open it.

After sitting down for a few minutes, we went wandering for a restaurant, but we went in the absolute wrong direction and couldn't find a place. We walked to a subway station, and they went home. I got groceries, climbed the steps and laid down with a sense of relief.

"Well, I'm back."