Whom We Choose

Posted in Rants, Sods on January 6th, 2004 by Дмитрий

A new year arrives and queers still can’t marry. The ruling gang is still screaming for a law against it - admitting to the world that they want their institution extended as a privilege to the gang, rather than as a right which a rational government should protect for all adults.

The news tells me that a pop star with too much time and money on her hands has eloped with a friend at a little Vegas chapel. The next day, they waltz into court and have the marriage annulled. It’s great to see how highly regarded the institution of marriage is held today by our culture’s elite.

I am not going to moralize on how one should never be allowed to end a marriage, or that one must make a marriage work, no matter how severe the adversity involved. I recognize the many reasons a relationship may end, and that divorce, separation and loss are common and necessary parts of life. The potential end of a relationship should not prevent any individual from marrying, and being married should not be an invincible barrier to change. However, I find it particularly infuriating that someone can so casually play with such a powerful legal and social instrument. So many people do.

Read more »


Posted in Work on January 24th, 2004 by Дмитрий

No sleep tonight. My head is massively preoccupied and I know the exact reason: my life is piling up. I attended an advising session at SFSU for my prospective return to academics, and the thought of adding another brick to the wall is just starting to overwhelm me.

I’m working my ass off every day ay a very consuming job, yet after a year and a half, I’m still making less money than I did before I moved to SF. I’ve got debt piled sky-high and now I’m expected by said job to go back to school whilst not in any way affecting my committments at work. And to pay for that, too.

Honestly, I’m seriously questioning whether this is possible. My list pf chores and personal projects lies undone month after month. My life is at a standstill and the bills keep piling up, and now I have to pay for school and find the time to attend as well. I know that I’ll never go anywhere jobwise without this education, but fitting it into an already overwhelmed life just might drive me mad…


Posted in Family, Fresno, Work on February 9th, 2004 by Дмитрий

Despite my often schiztophrenic relationship with my parents, they are veery good people. The work hard and they took good care of me as a child. They taught me well, and helped nurture my goals and productive achievements.

That’s why I am so angered that some loafing bit of scum could so easily take it all away from them. His name is Steven Washburn. I’m not sure at what point it was that he decided to destroy my parents, and ruin his own life at the same time… But he accomplished them both (at least I hope his life is ruined… we’ll see how good a job the police do…).

In a nutshell, this individual managed to swindle my father’s business for tens of thousands of dollars (myself and the other beancounters are still working on a total), over the past year or so. He kept things just messy enough so that the confusing books and baffling losses would appear attributable to a disorganized office, rather than professional embezzlement.

Now it is those of us who had made the accomplishments and done the footwork who must clean up after the villians. My father worked harder than ever the past year, and his company had its best year ever, all in the middle of a local commercial slump. Now he has discovered that his work did not ultimately reward himself and his family, but a slimy looter and his detritus. My father’s essentially been robbed of his profit for the past year, and after the dust settles, the consequential damages will be greater than his salary for the past two.

In some ways, I blame my own abandonment of my parents, and the subsequent need for a familiar face in the office, which I’m sure is what led them to hire someone who they had previously employed, and been at all times less than impressed with. They let down their guard and assumed that they had a team aimed at accomplishment, rather than destruction.

But one cannot take self-blame too far. When evil is perpetrated, no matter how close to home, it is only evil that one should blame…

The Great Clean-Up

Posted in Work on February 12th, 2004 by Дмитрий

My first ride on a train today. In fact, I’m typing as I ride (though I’m sure this won’t get uploaded until Friday morning). Almost as exciting as my first plane ride. Almost.

One positive result of my family’s recent adversity is that it has made me bite the bullet and take the train home for the first time. I honestly think this will be the way to go from now on. Mostly.

But I do wonder how much the tickets would cost on an unsubsidized line… The world may never know…

Line 718 (the San Joaquin route) travels from Emeryville station to Bakersfield, with stops in Richmond, Martinez, Antioch, Stockton, Modesto, Turlock, Merced, Madera, Fresno, Hanford, Corcoran and Wasco. The journey from San Francisco includes a short trip across the bay on a cushy motorcoach, on which I was finally high enough up to really see the sights from the Bay Bridge, including Treasure Island and the construction of the new Eastern Span, which I found fascinating.

The trip from SF to Fresno is supposed to take just under 5 hours. A little less than twice the time a trip by auto (at MurderingSpeeds). Nonetheless, I think it’s worth it, for about the cost of a tank and a half of gas (for the MurderingAuto).

But it remains to be seen whether I can be adequately satisfied by the municipal transit within Fresno once arriving (something which I may wait until next time before attempting).

In other news, this weekend should be a good indicator of exactly how much work remains on the Great Cleanup. I obtained a new middle manager at work, whom I’m warmly welcoming. My workplace is an anomoly, in that we are all very overworked, but the answer most would assume should remedy this - throwing more labor at the problem - is not quite as logical as it sounds. I think that one major reason for the immense amount of overwork we’re going through is more related to the chaos of fast growth, and a disciplined manager who can get control is a viable solution. Our new VP Ops is very promising in this regard. But I’ll say little more, as I don’t want to steal my boss’ thunder from the forthcoming press release.


Posted in Family on February 16th, 2004 by Дмитрий

I just had a long weekend working on the family troubles, followed by an immediate stint at the Marry-In.

Most people are familiar with my stand on the marriage thing. Here’s hoping the victory essay is just around the corner…

I only hope that during this long, wet night that my Husband doesn’t start having second thoughts about camping out just for a contract telling him he can never ever leave me. Ever.


Posted in Family on February 16th, 2004 by Дмитрий

I’m dead tired and ready to sleep for a few decades now. It’s strange that after over a year and a half being married in every way but ceremony and contract, those two things really make a difference.

I’m optimistic that this isn’t just a small, temporary “protest” marriage. I honestly feel like a different person now. I already feel more responsibility and humanity within myself. The past 48 hours have been a real blur, but the quantity and quality of love in me and around me will leave me touched forever.

It’s a brave new world tomorrow morning…


Posted in Family, San Francisco on February 24th, 2004 by Дмитрий

Still married and massively pleased with it. I must say I’m more excited than ever about the prospect that this might not be so easily quashed by the courts…

Along those lines, please all join David and I at Tad’s Steaks on Powell Street this Friday (8-o’clockish) for a little marriage celebration. A small group at most, but that’s all we need. It’s not to be called a Reception, as it’s a serve-yourself no-frills event, but I hope to see some pleasant faces nonetheless.

Even though I’m not buying you dinner, please feel free to buy us gifts from our respective Amazon Wish Lists (DavidMark).

The family business drama is as close to resolved as it’s going to be anytime soon. The counts of theft, fraud, and forgery have all but entirely been accounted for, but the balance of the clean-up work must now be passed on to the individuals who actually work for my dad these days. I’ve done what I can for now. I need a weekend off…


Posted in Friends, San Francisco on March 2nd, 2004 by Дмитрий

I knew I was a whimp. But today I overcame it a little. Rather than ignoring the fact that the girl I saw on the bus every day looked a lot like my old high school buddy Kelly, I snapped as we stepped off at the same stop: “Is your name Kelly?” and guess what? It was.

It’s strange how paths can cross so closely after so many years. We’ve been in and out of contact since high school (10 years, gawd!), maybe an annual email or so… And now I find she works around the corner from my own office…

Just thought I’d post it here to remember it happened. I might actually discover more people I remember in this world if I’d just speak up more often…

A Conspiracy of Fools

Posted in Americana, Economics on March 5th, 2004 by Дмитрий

I feel physically ill. Freedom in America takes another giant step backwards, as the arbitrary whims of an unaccountable government with unlimited power, imprisons one more of the world’s most productive and admirable women.

All for the love of the humdrum and humble. Once again, the totalitarian state needn’t be made by revolution, when it can simply be made by default.


Posted in About Me on March 17th, 2004 by Дмитрий

When contemplating a major, life-altering decision, is it better to internalize the decision-making process and consequent conflict? Or should one involve others in it for feedback and assistance in finding the right choice? What constitutes a “right” choice when the very direction and outcome of one’s life is at stake? Is there any right or wrong set of standards in determining the relative importance of factors regarding such choices? What if the most important factors one arrives at are, ultimately, in complete conflict? How can one be sure one has objectively assessed the relative importance of such factors? Does the fact that one factor is most important allow it to counter many factors which, whilst less important, are in conflict with it? Will I stop being so vacuous in my contemplations today?


Posted in A Life More Boring, About Me, Music on April 29th, 2004 by Дмитрий

I thought I’d break the nearly 2-months’ silence to describe the happenings these days…

I had a new baby go live this morning: the new website for my favorite local Fresno musicmen, Superfluid Helium 3. It’s a true labor of love, and I’m pretty pleased with some of the new webdesign ideas I’ve learned (with the helpful hand of David over my shoulder some of the time). Please do go and do buy their new CD, it’s the best 70+minute collection of tunes I’ve rotated since Lateralusback in 2001.

My web-surfing habits have changed, and thus I’ve updated my Links pages. I’ve been as busy as ever at work, and I start my next class next month at Skyline College. Then in the Fall I start the real meat at SFSU.

The weather in San Francisco has been miserable the past two months. Only one or two days of respite between heat wave after heat wave. I actually want to go back to Fresno as much as I can this summer to enjoy the A/C and swimming pools…

All the time I’m trying to galvanize my discipline and save money. It’s only working some of the time. I’ve slowed by Ebay habit to a trickle, and I’m taking my lunch to work every day. I just still can’t seem to give up my morning Starbucks, though…

I’ll try to update more than once in May.

Learning to Leave and Letting Go

Posted in About Me, Family, Get In My Head on May 6th, 2004 by Дмитрий

It’s only started to occur to me very recently how I deal with pain, loss and grief. Every time I say goodbye to someone or someplace which means a lot to me, I die a little inside, and it erodes a bit of what makes me who I am. As antisocial as I am in most respects, I do get tied to good people very easily. It really would rip my heart out every time I had to leave someone behind and move on to the next stage of my life, as I will always have to do, being human and all. Loss and grief are merely realities that everyone has to deal with in the unfair game of life.

But I think I’m starting to realize that I’ve never really dealt with it. It’s trite and cliche, but I have never properly learned how to let go of people and places to which I’ve been close and emotionally invested. Like much of my behavior, from career direction to investment ideas, I take the safe route, avoiding big risks, and avoiding any undue loss. The main reason is that I have never faced real life- threatening (or at least livelihood- threatening) adversity, and thus never properly learned how to deal with loss, having had so little. When someone I love dies or when I move away from people to whom I’m attached (or when they must move away from me), I universally deal with it by subconsciously pretending that nothing has changed except perhaps the frequency of my exposure to those people. I will verbally acknowledge that my Grandmother is dead - I saw her body on the hospital bed only moments after she died. But by failing to really register the fact that I will never see her again, instead preferring to fantasize that I just can’t see her due to distance, schedules or other interfering phenomena, I’m spared entirely the grieving process. Rather than thinking they’ve moved on to a different plain of existence, I think they merely moved on and I lost their address.

Read more »


Posted in A Life More Boring on May 27th, 2004 by Дмитрий

I was admitted to the SFSU Graduate Business school. It’s really happening. I’m really going back now… [Of course, by the time fall semester rolled around we'd decided to move to Charlotte so I never actually enrolled.]

So just in case I don’t get another update in this month, I can officially declare that I made good on my goal to update ‘more than once’ in May…

Boring #293701707109

Posted in A Life More Boring, Music on May 28th, 2004 by Дмитрий

Where on Earth is this darned year going? Before I know it it’ll be time to start planning our trip to the East Coast for Thanksgiving. In the mean time, we just booked our weekend in Maui to be present for my sister’s wedding, coming up at the end of summer… Not an interesting flight, I’m sure, but it should be nice to have some excuse to visit a state I otherwise just assumed I’d skip on the checklist.

What is it about guys in bands? Even the ones who I’d find hideously boring in any other context make me flutter when they’re holding an instrument… Must be some guitar-phallus connection… Not that the Athena boys wouldn’t give me a stir with or without the axes.

And finally, why is it that every city on earth seems to have a better music scene than San Francisco? I miss Fresno these days, especially when I’m in the mood for a local live show by some bad band I’ve never heard of (or even a good but horribly unpopular one I have heard of), and then I remember that SF doesn’t allow those.


Posted in Work on June 10th, 2004 by Дмитрий

Why is it that I am totally incapable of conducting an astute and cogent interview? I’ve done dozens of them by now, but each time I feel like some blathering idiot that’s wasting both my time and the time of the interviewee…

I wish we could all just admit that the whole hiring process is, in most cases, a crapshoot when I’m involved. I am hopeless trying to screen via resumes. I’m more impressed by a PDF resume and neat formatting (and good prose) than actual experiences. The truth is, I’m more likely to want to just play with the boss’s money and let it be trial by fire. The bottom line: if I’m interviewing you, just nod, smile, and take it for granted that, more likely than not, I’m dumber than you and a roll of the dice is as likely to determine your fate as my interview is…

That said, the weather has been much more pleasant lately than usual. Chilly foggy mornings all week long, but these damn hot weekends are getting on my nerves… It’s like the City is saying “you can’t go to work and take refuge in the air-conditioned office, so I’m gonna make you sweat sweat sweat…”

And why is it that I can only seem to update on Thursdays lately?


Posted in San Francisco on June 23rd, 2004 by Дмитрий

Not that anyone is actually reading this anymore, but I just wanted to advertize my upcoming birthday. #27 on the list.

You should definitely go here if you’re feeling generous. Of course, cash is always acceptable as well.

Those who have nothing better to do with their Friday night (the 25th) should crash my get-together at the Tonga Room. Feel free to show up fashionably late for mixers, just in case the dining room is crowded for the coming PridWeekend/Month/Year. My actual birthday will not be until the 30th, but that night is already taken by my hubby.


Posted in About Me, Health on June 24th, 2004 by Дмитрий

I admit that I dabbled in drugs, and was a bit of an alcoholic during an especially low part of my life a few years back (it’s anyone’s guess whether the alcohol led to the low point or vice-versa).

Throughout my teens, and again these days, I’ve tended to be rather critical of those who use drugs or (excessive amounts of) alcohol recreationally. I’ve often felt that the legal stuff like alcohol was OK in moderation, and that these days I could enjoy a drink without feeling it a contradiction.

However, I have noticed that in the past couple weeks I’ve been drinking more than usual. Not excessively, at least not to the point where I’m swaying and incoherent from it. But I’ve been having a drink or two every night for more than a couple weeks. It wasn’t a conscious decision, and I couldn’t tell you exactly why it started.

This particular contradiction needs to be removed from my life. I’m not saying I’m going to suddenly become a ‘recoverer’ or a campaigner to ban or villify drug and alcohol use. I’m just saying that I’m done hacking my brain.

Gedd Ma Ar On

Posted in Uncategorized on June 28th, 2004 by Дмитрий

I woke up from my first post-apocalyptic dream. It was the 11th of sometime, and by nightfall, the bombs had started falling. Everyone around me was from work or casual acquaintance, and none of the people that mattered could be found. The City had fractured into warring clans, each trying to proclaim itself the foreign offices of France (the Transamerica clan), Germany (the Marriott clan), Zaire (the Gap clan), or any other socialist dictatorship on the menu.

I stayed at work until the morning, wishing I had my husband to hold, hovering over the techies hoping someone could find a way to connect to something - to get news, to communicate with the outside. By morning, the chance that I had anything left in the City to stay for was dwindling, and all I wanted to do was see my family, my husband or someone I loved. The second volley of bombs had fallen before daybreak.

The dawn was hot, windy and unexpectedly sunny. I woke up before I had the chance to escape.


Posted in Sods on June 28th, 2004 by Дмитрий

Gay Pride is, at its root, an attempt to portray a routinely oppressed population as free and capable of defending its interest. What it is in fact, is a grotesque display of insecurity and a totally soiling influence upon the quality and substantiveness of sex.

Sexual Liberation has resulted not in sex as a fact of life becoming more safe, open and understood, but in sex the act becoming cheap, easy and disconnected from those vital things it was meant, in humans, to provide: emotional satisfaction, intimate contact and personal spiritual-intellectual gratification. The result is a culture which is desensitized to sex, incapable of enjoying intimacy, and profoundly critical of meaningful contact.

I prefer a warm cuddle on a cold foggy morning to any given quantity of anonymous orifices. I want intelligent conversation, shared aesthetic tastes, and a sense of personal achievement as part of the whole package deal of snuggling and listening to another beating heart, without fear or pain or guilt. Assimilating oneself to a standardized rip-off sense of fashion, whether it’s the abercrombie drag, bear drag, biker drag, muscle drag, circuit-clone drag or dyke drag, erodes one’s sense of self. What is there to liberate if I’m no longer me?


Posted in Fucking Moron on June 29th, 2004 by Дмитрий

A hint to the dimwit at Starbucks this morning (and any of you other fast-service impaired): during rush hour (roughly 6am-9am), do not start your order, then go to browse for a bag of coffee, maybe an overpriced trinket, then start drilling the cashier on what’s in the drinks, what certain pastries taste like, how his kids are doing, whether or not he got his goiter removed, etc. Rush hour at Starbucks is about one thing: caffine. If you’re really close to passing out, you can add some high-carb pastry to the order, but fergawdsakes, make it fast. This is downtown San Francisco, where those of us who aren’t trying to maintain the Meth high from last night are at least trying to make it into work before lunch…



Posted in About Me on June 29th, 2004 by Дмитрий

Just a reminder - My birthday is tomorrow - last chance to help me celebrate!


Posted in A Life More Boring on July 7th, 2004 by Дмитрий

And so… The birthday was fun, if expensive. My celebration at the Tonga Room was soiled by a preceding encounter with the DPT (dickheads, pricks and tramps, I think). My car had been towed on 24-hours’ notice in a city where I am supposedly allowed to park in any uncontrolled space for 72 hours at a time. I was, of course, ultimately expected to already know that this 72-hour rule only applies when the City chooses to apply it, so I paid the bail and got the car out of jail. Then off to try to enjoy what was left of the evening. But having such nifty friends made it all worth it…

The birthday gifts rolled in, including a Gameboy from David, some CDs from my sister and some more from Chuck, and other fun things to occupy me for the large amounts of free time I wish I had.

Went to meet the hubby for lunch today and we ran into the other Mark outside Rincon Center. We’ve communicated often, and he’s one of the original net-loggers along with David, but for some reason lives lived of late travel in every direction except the one allowing anything resembling regular visits. Pity we’ve thus far only met twice in person!

Went to Cambria for a weekend with the family, which was far more exhausting than I wanted it to be. I love my family, but being in a small house with 6 of them for two nights without a car can be trying. Combine that with the fact that my train was running 2.5 hours late and I didn’t make it home until 1am Tuesday morning and I am definitely waiting for a real weekend…

On the agenda for July: save money, whilst also visiting the North Bay to see LGB (stands for “Lesbian Gay Bisexual”) next week and then escape the horror of Dore Alley with a trip to Fresno to visit with Cattie. Fun.

Sober 2

Posted in About Me, Health on July 15th, 2004 by Дмитрий


It’s no secret that a logical argument carries more weight than any quantity of alogical moralizing. What’s strange is how rare logical arguments are in certain situations and for certain subjects. You see, I’ve been exposed over the years to a huge number of non-secular critcisms of drugs and alcohol; of parental prohibition (whilst they imbibed freely), of recoverers talking of how their reason-neutral 12-step programs helped them off the road to nowhere, and religious recruiters referencing the scriptures for lessons on temperance and discipline.

One thing I never was given much training on was the logic of discipline and the rational epistemological arguments against drugs and alcohol. Alcohol (and in many more liberal urban areas, drugs as well) is such an ingrained and accepted part of American culture that its root existence and effects are rarely studied other than in the usual inconclusive “temperance and tolerance” methodology.

In this sense, I feel like a total failure at logic and reason. I’m very angry at myself and the world around me that I could be so alarmingly misled for so much of my young adulthood, and that I can never get back the innocence and cleanliness of never having been drunk or high. All my reading and education and exposure to the virtue of logic and reason never prepared me for this particular quagmire.

Only when I started to seriously evaluate my own behavior (in stages for several years) did I realize that such arguments existed. I cannot as yet speak with any real authority, only having permanently spurned the bottle less than a month ago. However, I will say this: Read more »

I Luv Economisties

Posted in Economics on July 20th, 2004 by Дмитрий

The Economist, not your average liberal rag, has been coming out fairly scathingly critical of President Bush and perversely supportive of candidate Kerry these days… Which gives me some semblance of hope that the divisiveness of the past few years is turning from the usual religious- or wealth-based dichotomies to something more akin to stupidity versus non-stupidity (I hesitate to call Kerry ‘intelligent’).

In a case where one candidate is campaigning on fear and essentially convincing people that they’re too stupid to help themselves, and another campaigning on hope and the idea that people can solve their own problems, the one who is doing the least insulting will prevail. It would truly be refreshing if this election did not come down to lowest common denominators. But I’m not getting my hopes up. Kerry and his campaign may be better in the brains department, but the competition isn’t offering much of a fight…

Dish Network. Satellite TV for us Po Waht Traysh.

Posted in Geekdom on July 23rd, 2004 by Дмитрий

Our third Dish DVR 510 receiver in two weeks failed on us sometime last night. The first receiver and the current one both died the same death, so this is a plea to anyone who might be able to help diagnose.

We awake and notice, before touching anything, that the receiver’s green power light is going off, then coming on, then going off again and again. We turn on the TV. It is in some state of the following repeated scenario:

  1. Power comes on
  2. Acquires signal from satellite (Progress 1-5 of 5)
  3. Tunes successfully to it’s current channel
  4. Displays perfect signal for 10-20 seconds
  5. Spontaneously powers down

This is all before we touch anything. In all cases, we’ve tried all the usual trouble-shooting: different outlet, cycling the power button, removing and reinserting the SmartCard, different room, different TV, different satellite input, different wiring, different color pixie dust. In all cases, the symptoms remain the same.

The current receiver is still in its early stages, but by Day 3, the first receiver was degenerating and was no longer even transmitting a signal for the 10-20 seconds, but just randomly power cycling to no avail. I would be ready to call the BBB, the PUC, the FCC and the WTO right now had I not had a less than aggrivating tech support experience this morning by a very nice gal in North Carolina (as opposed to those (mostly) horrible excuses for native English speakers in India that I’m usually connected to). She gave us a 3-week service credit and promised more if the technician could not remedy the problem next week.

As it is now, us Po Waht Traysh can’t afford the real deal, so we had to sell our souls to DISH in order to get the service. Thus, we have to follow Their orders when it comes to remedies, lest we have to pay for our release from eternal servitude. The current one is that a technician from DumbFuck-MomAndPop-CableCompany-OnBehalfOf-DishNetwork will be visiting us a week from now to see if they know anything (which I doubt). Then begins the arduous task of making it up the acronymous chain of command for assistance.

Any tips, tricks or guesses should be sent to us.

Coming Out of the Ghetto

Posted in Rants, San Francisco, Sods on July 25th, 2004 by Дмитрий

Being one, I have nothing against homosexuals. But for an agglomeration of reasons, they piss me off a lot here in San Francisco. I previously ranted about the cheapening of sexuality which seems to have been brought on by “sexual liberation” and the culture of Pride. One thing I have also been pondering, however, is whether we’re just pandering to age-old caste systems by engrossing ourselves so frequently in our individual subcultures and ghettos.

I think about this every time I see one of the many parades and street fairs which imprison me in my home on various Sundays every few months. A peek down the street or a futile attempt to move my car exposes me to gaggles of gays in their preferred clone attire, attending an event which is advertized to portray the liberation and normalizing of their “preferred lifestyle” within their society.

I do not agree with that line of reasoning. San Francisco has very successfully marketed itself as the homo capital of the world. It is very safe to be queer here. You can peck your husband goodbye on the bus, casually pop by the bar waving the banded flag, enjoy multiple blowjobs for the cost of a movie with impunity, and once every month or so attend a fair showcasing just how undressed your peers can get in public.

Read more »


Posted in About Me, Economics on July 29th, 2004 by Дмитрий

Another day, another vice to overcome; this time, overspending.

I’ve got this really bad habit of Ebaying myself into the poorhouse, and I gotta stop. I think, to tell the truth, I just have a really addiction-prone personality, and always get really into whatever I get started with. All the better that I’ve stopped drinking.

Sure, it’s cool having a bigger collection of Siouxsie music and memorabilia than most of the band even, but I’m sure I’m wearing my hubby’s patience thin with my constant acquisitions. He tries to show tolerance, but I think I need to get better. Besides, we really need to save up cash for him to get a new computer and for us to be able to escape this rathole of a city sooner than 2010.

It all started last month when I started looking for cheap iPods on Ebay, and regularly checking back for new auctions, then slowly I started doing more searches, then more, and before I knew it I had bought 500 bucks or so worth of Siouxsie junk.

My new goal: to avoid buying a single thing for myself for the next 60 days and see how much better we look financially after that.

Моя Машина

Posted in Uncategorized on August 3rd, 2004 by Дмитрий

The time has come to unload the car I have had for more than 10 years. I remember back in high school when I got it, and later using it to clandestinely speed to Las Vegas for a Creatures show which I never ended up seeing, driving endlessley through all my free time all over central California to escape Roommate Hell back in my undergrad years… It’s been a sturdy, reliable car. I will miss it.

David’s birthday is coming. Buy him something. And if you’re in Southern California this weekend, let us know and you may just be invited to the prty.

Happy Birthday,

Posted in Family on August 10th, 2004 by Дмитрий

Baby. I’m so glad I found you.

P.S: Anyone need a car?

Olympic Terrorism

Posted in Economics, Rants on August 15th, 2004 by Дмитрий

The fever of Olympiana has once again consumed the world. Every few years, the governments of the world, both autocratic and democratic, rally their minions to their flags to support an institution which purports to enshrine values which every human should supposely appreciate: national pride, athleticism, cameraderie, etc.

All the while, we never seem to question the rather insidious facets of the Olympics, and its repercussions upon us as individuals, whether we live in a free society or not. It also reflects the immense infrastructure of corruption and villany which the entire enterprise of sports entertainment has brought to the world in which we live.

Read more »

Package Politics

Posted in Americana on August 18th, 2004 by Дмитрий

Well Said. I’ve often found it a bit queer that endorsing an individual candidate or issue almost invariably chains one to a whole slew of platforms upon which one is expected to stand and defend without question. Sort of the mild trepidation I felt standing in line to marry my husband and chatting uncomfortably with the sods on the sidewalk as they unquestioningly obliged me to not only enjoy a same-sex marriage, but also to volunteer to help the homeless, free Mumiah and end the War in Iraq at the same time…

Along the same lines, I think individuals from all sides seem to be bundling their politics too much these days. As politics gets increasingly divisive, people seem to take shelter in group-think, which leads to blind acceptance of “platform politics” rather than rational opining of specific issues and candidates. My own dad has fallen victim of this crisis: upon learning that I planned to vote for Kerry, he immediately knew I preferred high taxes, tighter business restrictions, a big European welfare state, pulling troops out of Iraq, lying, cheating and molesting children. Uniting values with specific candidates and issues tends to create this all-or-nothing mentality. You can no longer split your ticket. You’re either with us or against us.


Posted in Economics on August 20th, 2004 by Дмитрий

Anyone who knows me well knows I care very little for sports. Aside from occasionally fetishizing the body of a stocky jock, I could not care less about what happened to which team yesterday. Along those lines, I’m also not a fan of the Olympics. I don’t find many differences between your everyday sporting business and the Olympics. If anything, I dislike the Olympics more because it commands such unwarranted reverence among people who otherwise don’t care about sports either.

A while back I’d written a short rant about the destructive force which is the Olympics. Whilst reveiewing it as a possible post in deference to the current plague soiling our national attention-spans, I realized that it was just as applicable to the every-day business of sporting events, from college football to major-league baseball. Basically, the root factor here is the mass-mobilization character of sports: how those who run the sports institutions command such massive influence upon our culture, wielding immense (unaccountable) public power and using that power to create an incredibly fascist policymaking instutution within our society. By commanding sports, one can easily command the psyche of a vast majority of people, and this allows the sports entertainment bodies of the world to commit massive amounts of fraud and villany whose blatant erosion of law and rights would be impossible for any other institution.


Posted in Travel on August 25th, 2004 by Дмитрий

By this (relative) time tomorrow, we’ll be in Maui. I never really expected to go there. Hawai’i was of course a line on the checklist, but it doesn’t seem to hold much a lure for the effort required to go there… Oahu is where we would have been most likely to explore in the end, being urbanists, but this’ll do. Besides, how could I turn down being able to attend my sister’s wedding?

Now to decide whether I want to blow the extra cash I’ve been landed with this week on a new iPod for the trip… Hmm…


Posted in Travel on August 29th, 2004 by Дмитрий

Back and exhausted. It’s good I don’t have to work tomortow… O wait…

Lots of good food, lots of wedding fun, lots of scantily clad Polynesian boys, lots of driving, lots of sun… Hey, I take the bad with the good…

I’m sure a full report will be forthcoming, but right now I need sleep.

Confronting the Urban Daemon

Posted in Get In My Head, San Francisco, Urbanism on August 31st, 2004 by Дмитрий

Two years in San Francisco. Damn.

Over the past two years, my relationship with this City has had its ups and downs. It’s sort of like being adopted by your evil stepmother and trying really hard to love her even though she abuses and enslaves you in your own home.

San Francisco: it has such promise. If you look at it from the right angles and in the right lighting, it’s urban perfection and beauty realized. But with your feet on the ground and in the daily grind, it’s a most unlivable place.

I go through my day-to-day life despising this City. I hate the postage-stamp-sized apartment it makes me live in (even though our home is larger than most at its price). I hate the necessity of using the public transit system. I hate the dirt and grime and indigence. I hate the traffic and the daily drama of moving and worrying about my car. I hate the fact that even though the supermarkets are always out of everything, it still costs more than it would in a less-crowded, well-stocked suburban store. I hate the inconvenience of my neighborhood: the fact that it’s the most car-friendly, and thus has all the disadvantages of a dense urban area and none of the advantages, like shops and restaurants and coffeehouses. I hate the unbelievable extra costs incurred for living here: from parking tickets to gas to food to the increased amount of time spent getting to places that would be easy and quick in any mid-sized suburb. The lost investment value of time alone in this City has me running a huge deficit…

The amount of energy I’ve expended maintaining my life in San Francisco is in drastic excess to what the same standard of living would have taken out of me in Fresno - and Fresno itself is not necessarily the most convenient or cheapest place to live. At the same time, I’ve yet to really reap any promised advantages to life here.

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Traveling Partner

Posted in Family on September 14th, 2004 by Дмитрий

Nearly three years on, I often find it strange how well I get on with my husband. I hear all these voices out there about how marriage is such hard work, how “love hurts”, how much politicking people do in their relationships… And I really just don’t understand. Am I just lucky that I’ve managed to score the best friend and lover in the world (PS. he is the best lover, incidentally…)? Or is there something more intrinsically wrong with the way others manage their relationships?

I’m not saying we’ve never had our tense moments. Being a self-absorbed hermit, I’m bound to be slightly less capable of thorough communication and much slower at being considerate and polite. He’s got his eccentricities, habits and choices which clash with my own, and I’m sure I do things every day which annoy him. But that’s called being individuals. I don’t want to “be” him and he doesn’t want to “be” me - we just love being together. A major functional component of our relationship since the beginning is our lack of desire to “control” one another. This becomes adaptive in a domestic setting - since living together creates a whole new layer of necessary compromises and mutually agreed behavioral modifications. But the adaptations required by the latter are minimal. They are, admittedly, a continual developmental process that cannot be ignored lest they evolve into a larger rift. On the whole, we are each our own person, and our desire to be together and share our lives does not translate to a desire to manipulate the desires or choices of the other.

I’m thoroughly convinced this is the issue which makes relationships work. The most successful relationships I’ve seen among friends and acquaintances and in my own life are those in which the partners are independent entities functioning in tandem. They happen to be on the road to the same place and thus they are sharing the journey. Too many relationships start out without that necessary ingredient: the individuals involved are not going in the same direction, and yet somehow the ralationship becomes an end in itself, bringing little pleasure or reward other than the mere status of its existence. Thus it becomes a futile game of control and sacrifice, and is doomed to frustration. One or both parties are bound to realize one day that their journey got off track, and that they’ve given up too much of themselves. That’s the point where either the relationship ends explosively and ruinously, or the person’s life effectively ends: they give up entirely on the expectation of happiness.

My boy lets me travel in my own direction. He supports and encourages my own independent journey, and he is secure enough in himself and his own journey that he doesn’t feel the urge to leash me with insecurity or fear. His own independent spirit prohibits it, since he wouldn’t want that from me, either. The purpose of our union is the happiness we get from the intricacies of one anothers’ company and the shared joy of our common ground. He’s the best thing in my life, and I love him for being a part of it.

Sad Cunt

Posted in Economics on September 15th, 2004 by Дмитрий

I’ve searched hard, but no song in my vast goth collection seems sad enough…

I’m searching for an appropriate requiem for the bravest woman who ever graced the American business world. Her history is tragic - not because of her shortcomings, but because of her virtues. I wonder if her true story will ever be understood… the story of how a nation consumed by self-sacrifice was able to destroy a woman who committed that nation’s most unforgivable crime: she was proud of her achievements…

Lost Wishes

Posted in Music on September 17th, 2004 by Дмитрий

I started listening to The Cure when I was 10 years old. My sister had bought a few tapes by them, and within a few months I had approriated them and they were on endless rotation in my little cassette player. I was in love. Robert Smith was my hero. The Cure saved me from a possible life as a bland suburban white boy. The Cure have influenced me probably more than even I realize, aesthetically, emotionally, musically and behaviorally.

Mr. Smith has often said he dislikes the way in which Cure fans often tend to worship him and dehumanize him. For some reason, I continued to do this long after most fans of my generation had stopped in the mid-late 90s. The Cure had failed us my moving on from their usual “profound” recordings to music which was more self-indulgent, rambling and uncharacteristic. I gave The Cure many second chances before finally shedding my illusions of eternal devotion sometime shortly after the most recent album, “The Cure” was realeased. I thought I understood long ago why Mr. Smith meant when he said “please stop loving me… I am none of these things”.

But perhaps a later song is more appropriate. Understanding it allows us to enjoy the positive side of the end of a long relationship without necessarily harming the long-standing devotion I will continue to have to who The Cure were and what they continue to mean to me. I think I appreciate The Cure more than ever now that I have stopped expecting the undeliverable from them from here on out.

Ultimately, I’ll probably still be buying every new album Robert Smith puts out, even if it includes duets with Madonna and recordings of his diarrhea. I probably won’t get my money out of them, but the payment will be for what The Cure have given me through the years. The enthusiasm has waned, but they are still there, and still important.

Street Carp

Posted in Americana, San Francisco on September 20th, 2004 by Дмитрий

David’s car was broken into Saturday night for the second time in less than a year. He is always careful not to leave anything of value in the car to avoid tempting unfortunate people with Earthly delights. However, the person or persons that have broken into it these past couple times don’t seem to have been interested in any specific item within, but rather we’ve found the seat positions displaced in such a way as to suspect that the culprit is a homeless or bedless individual in search of shelter.

I just want to let everyone know that I’ve changed my ways and I’m not angry at the person who broke into the car. I understand their plight, and 150 bucks for a new window is a small price to pay for providing some poor junkie with a place to sleep. I know that it’s my fault that they got this way. If I would only give up the profit motive and accept a life of poverty in the pursuit of the happiness of others, our world would be without want and without war. Thus, I am glad to give up such things as security of person and personal property. These people aren’t criminals, they’re victims of corporate greed and stuff. Right?

Sin is In

Posted in Americana on September 20th, 2004 by Дмитрий

“Jesus died for our sins. That sacrifice should not have been in vain. Thus, let us all go forth and sin as much as we possibly can.”

- “Anonymous” post at InTheFaith.com

Le Cafe

Posted in Fucking Moron on September 21st, 2004 by Дмитрий

It’s like nails on a chalkboard every morning when my coworker asks me if I want any coffee from Starbucks by asking “You need anything from the cafe?”

I think of a cafe as a small restaurant which serves breakfast and lunch. Starbucks is just the fast-food of foofy coffee. It’s like calling McDonald’s “the diner” or something…

Along the same lines, when I’m at Starbucks, I often have fantasies of sabotaging some of the stupid yuppies there by find a way of sneaking half-and-half into the “nonfat milk” and “soy milk” cannisters. I would laugh long and I would laugh hard as I watched their prissy faces turn sour as that thing which is fat and cholesterol which is so despicably alien to them invaded their scrawny defenseless frames… MWAHAHAHAHAH!!!

Like Listening to Myself

Posted in San Francisco on September 22nd, 2004 by Дмитрий

From LiliBat:

“I will miss SF, but I rarely go out. Most of what I do is come home and play games and the way things are now I can’t afford a lot of games OR going out. The cost of livivng here is so high I can’t afford to live so what’s the point?”

I’m Not Cool Enough for This City… Duh.

Posted in About Me, San Francisco on September 24th, 2004 by Дмитрий

How David managed to spend 13 years of his life in the City so far I’ll never understand. I had a rather severe nervous breakdown last night after an abortive attempt at finding anything comfortable or cozy about this city once more. It’s a semi-annual affair since I moved here. I think I try REALLY hard to enjoy this city, but every time it feels uncomfortable, wrong and forced.

I end up escaping to the comfort of our postage-stamp-sized apartment and realize that I still am itchy to get out. I’m just not used to feeling so claustrophobic and isolated, and after two years it’s getting to me more than usual. This was accentuated by the fact that last night I seemed to realize more than ever that the type of comfort I’m looking for just doesn’t seem to exist here. I think I’m just not cut out to be in a big, dense city. I’m enough of a home body that having a tiny apartment and not being able to afford my own home to tinker with and improve is a major let-down. But I’m also enough of a social being that having only options involving HUGE crowds and alcohol-, drug-, or scene-culture is very alienating.

Maybe I’m just feeling unfairly spurned by this city that’s housed me for two years, but I have this constant feeling that the people here are just too cliquish and exclusive for me. I’m somewhat socially inept and dorky around crows, I don’t have that “style” and “confidence” that so many people seem to display (whether faked or real), and I seem to get this attitude-riddled vibe around just about any public place I go here… Like I have to “prove myself” in order to “belong” and it just makes me more withdrawn. I started totally clean and made tons of new friends several times over in Fresno, at new places and without feeling such a sense of trepidation. Either I’ve just grown too isolated or there really is a difference between big city people and the kind of people I’m used to…

Either way, the final stickler is my sense of self-accountability which forces me to analyse this all as “whose fault is this?” In other words, am I making excuses for my own inability to be happy here? By longing for a move back to a slower, mid-sized suburban town, am I just running from the real problem? The fact that I came to San Francisco because I was, ultimately, running from an entraping family/job situation in Fresno throws up a red flag and makes me wonder how many places I’ll end up running from, and whether the next will be any better…

The Truth About the Big City

Posted in Get In My Head, Urbanism on September 25th, 2004 by Дмитрий

The Big City means high-end urban areas such as NY, SF, LA, Philly and Chicago. Places where owning a single-family detatched dwelling is not feasible for the vast majority of residents. This rules out up-and-coming cities with rational real estate such as Charlotte, Raleigh, Austin and Denver. It also rules out most of the rust belt, where property values tend to be declining and the population decreasing.

The Big City has three types of residents: 1) those who were born there 2) those who come there and 3) those who stay there.

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Political Compass

Posted in About Me on September 27th, 2004 by Дмитрий

My Political Compass position:

Economic Left/Right: 6.38
Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -4.00


Posted in Get In My Head, Sods on September 30th, 2004 by Дмитрий

Contemplating the possibility of a future move to the Beautiful American South (land of evangelicals and baptists, birthplace of lynchings and the conformity of “rebellion”), I sometimes pause a moment to consider how my attitudes and behaviors might need to be modified in relation to my distance from the closet.

This essay, of course, refers to the closet that all us deviants and social minorities deal with in terms of allowing or promoting the exposure of our identity to the outside world. I owe significant inspiration for this work to the scratchings of and my chatter with a certain New England Nun, who has written his own plentiful volume on the matter.

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Platform Politics

Posted in Americana, Rants on October 1st, 2004 by Дмитрий

I’ve become especially sensitive lately with the way every public medium and social institution today seems to be less concerned with its own specialized role and more dedicated to a sort of “catalogue” response to the world. This spans everything from social clubs to political candidates, public issues to editorial stances. I’ve written about it before: the “all or nothing” response to the world at large, expecially in reference to political values.

The most obvious sign is the political landscape of the past decade. As gerrymandering came back with full force in 2000, politicians have had less and less to worry about in terms of competing against candidates of the other party within their districts, and instead have to cater to the extremes of their own party in order to defeat so-called “wishy-washy” bi- or non-partisan candidates. As a result, the republicans get scarrier and more right-wing religious and the democrats get more slimy and authoritarian-fascist.

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Posted in Family on October 1st, 2004 by Дмитрий

How come when I do an internet search for “Adult children having problems with their parents” I don’t get anything even remotely applicable? Am I the only one whose relationship with my parents failed to normalize after adolescence?


Posted in Family on October 1st, 2004 by Дмитрий

So… I’m 27 years old and I have two children. One is 54 years old and one is 59. They are very nice children, and they love me. Sometimes they are good children and offer to help with chores. They are always very thoughtful on birthdays and holidays, and they try hard to demonstrate maturity for their age. But they often behave badly. They throw temper tantrums whenever I don’t let them have their way. When they want something from papa Mark, or need me to do something for them, all they understand are their own needs or wants. They never quite come to grips with what us grown-ups need to do, or the kinds of responsibilities we have - all they understand is their little sheltered “kid’s world”. They have a lot of trouble making up their minds about what they want to do when they grow up. They never quite seem to understand that someday they’ll have to make up their minds and strike out on their own, without papa Mark to hold their hands and guide them through every little bit of adversity.

It’s times like this that I am absolutely certain that I never want children that are any younger than I…

Pumpkin Spice

Posted in Holidays on October 7th, 2004 by Дмитрий

Fall is the best time of year. Not only is the California fall mildly cool and predictable (an important factor when you live in the Bay Area, where “climate control” is considered insulting to the environment), but Starbucks starts rolling out seasonal latte flavors. It starts slow with such things as the Pumpkin Spice latte and culminates with the best coffee drink ever invented: the Gingerbread latte. Alas, we all know that the holidays are over when the cups turn white and the smell of ginger and cinnimon no longer fills the coffeehouse…