Mall

Long ago there were a lot of little stores that sold various things and were owned and run by people. Sure, there were larger stores that sold various things under one roof and they were not run by individuals. These were called “department” stores, presumably because they had “departments” for different things; a housewares department, women’s clothes department, and so on.

Then one day, huge behemoths showed up and they contained department stores and smaller stores that were run by, I dunno, corporations, I guess. They were chain stores, you see.

These were called shopping malls. They did a pretty good job of doing in the small mom & pop stores because they were numerous and close by and it was more convenient for people to go to one location to blow their paychecks on music, videogames, and trendy clothes.

In addition, most malls also had ‘food courts’ where a lot of chain food places were set up so people could eat and shop at the same time.

I miss malls. To me, they are totally 80s things because I spent so much time in them. It was a place that you could (in theory) go for free, spend hours hanging out with friends and going to the arcade or looking at toys in toy stores. Or checking out the latest computer games in the stores that had computers set up for demos and stuff.

It was fun, in its own way. Malls influenced a generation, what with malls showing up in movies, a sneaker company making sneakers specifically design for walking around a mall and who knows what else.

Then, one day, the mall conglomerates were sitting around a big table chortling at how they were making a bunch of money and putting smaller stores out of business and, while they were chortling, Amazon was on the rise.

The last time I was in a mall about half the storefronts were empty. The big building, once bustling with people and noise, was now quiet with only a few people walking around. The glory days far behind. One day these building will be completely empty and I wonder what the hell will become of them. Will they be torn down? Re-purposed for something else? Giant roller skating rinks?

Skating rinks were fun, too, if you liked loud disco type music and arcade games. I don’t miss those quite as much, but they were pretty interesting.

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Cook

I once worked with a person who hated to eat. He felt that it was a waste of time that could be spent doing other things. If he could, he said, take a pill that would give him everything he needed, he would rather do that.

I, on the other hand, love to eat. While other people look at Star Trek and wish they had a Holodeck or, maybe, a teleport, I wish I had a food replicator.

If I had a food replicator I’d be asking for all manner of dishes. Plain ones. Exotic ones. Simple ones. Super complex ones. I’d be eating so damn much you’d need a teleporter just to get me into the next room.

It’s not because I can’t cook — I can. I’m actually pretty good at it. I just don’t like spending a lot of time doing it. Most of the time I just throw something in the oven and let it cook it itself.

On weekends, though, I’ll take the time. I’m a big fan of “one bowl’ meals; soups, stews, casseroles and the like. Anything I can just toss in a bowl and eat while watching TV.

Every once in a while I’ll think about doing a cooking blog. I could post my recipes for super simple meals that take about ten minutes to make. It wouldn’t really work, though, because I just use whatever I have on hand and I never measure anything out.

For instance, here’s my recipe for hamburger soup:

1) Brown some ground beef in a large pot. Logically, one pound would do but I always end up making two pounds. The 80% stuff.
2) Do you have any frozen vegetables? Yes? Toss them in the pot. Wait, did you drain the ground beef? Did I tell you to? Now put back all that grease.
3) Got any canned beans laying around? Throw them in the pot, too. I don’t bother draining or rinsing them.
4) Do you have any room left in the pot? Usually I don’t, but if you do put some water in there until it’s above the contents. Or the rim. Whichever comes first.
5) Do you have any herbs and spices? Throw them in there, too. I generally like cumin, basil, oregano, garlic powder, onion salt, salt, pepper… Hell, whatever I have usually goes in. Use your eye to figure out how much. And use your nose, too.
6) Cook over medium heat until it’s hot.
7) Eat up!
8) If you have leftovers, toss ‘em in the fridge. When you eat more tomorrow you can scrape off the layer of grease. Or let it flavor up the next bowl!

So, you see, not very good so I end up not making a cooking blog. It’s kind of a disappointment seeing how much money other people are making off of it. Cook books, Walmart product lines… I’d like in on that action, too, but all my stuff would probably be made in China and break after the first use.

 

New

I bought a new keyboard. So now I feel like I want to write something to use this spiffy new keyboard.

But I don’t know what to write about. I thought about writing about technology and stuff, but who wants to read about that?

I’ve actually bought a lot of new things lately. It’s all part of my plan to get rid of a lot of things and clean out my space and minimize. In retrospect, I can see how buying a lot of new things doesn’t really fit in with minimizing. Unless I get rid of my old stuff. Which I’m working on. I promise.

For instance, since I’m all alone there’s no sense having a flatware service for six. So I bought a set for one. Now, I just have to get rid of my old flatware and I’ll be minimized. See? And then hope I don’t need an extra spoon for something.

Because even though I have a service for six, there’s a lot of things missing. For instance, I only have two of the big spoons. I don’t know what happened to the other four. They’re probably around somewhere, but where? Under the couch? Why would they be there? I don’t know.

So I have a bunch of junk and mismatched things that I really want to get rid of. I don’t have time, though. Me. A person who has nothing going on in life besides working has no time to organize and minimize. Isn’t that sad? Thank you for understanding.

I like writing. Part of writing is having tools that make you feel like writing. So I buy keyboards. Nice, mechanical, keyboards that make clacky noises when I type and makes me feel like I’m doing something productive. I also like pens. And paper. But I do most writing on the computer so a keyboard it is!

Not bad for someone who’s not a writer.

I use Windows and… What’s it called now? MacOS? macOS? Whatever. I prefer to use the Apple when writing. I don’t know why, I just do. Mostly I use Windows for watching media and playing games. For the gritty act of writing, though, it’s macOS all the way. That’s the reason why I want a 5K iMac. Well, that and the photography. Which I also don’t do anymore.

Hmmm. I need to re-consider some life choices.

Sex

I make a pretty good living. I live alone. I spend the majority of my time alone, in fact. Every once in a while I’ll think that I should get a Real Doll.

A Real Doll, if you don’t know, is, well, a sex doll. Unlike the inflatable ones that bob along with a look of perpetual surprise, Real Dolls look kind of human. At least, if you’re not looking too closely it looks like a real person. And they’ve got a sort of skeleton so they’re posable. And life size.

My apartment is small. Very small. Sometimes the maintainance people come in for whatever reason. Like, inspections or whatever. Usually I have a few hours notice, but sometimes an emergency comes up.

I wonder how embarrasing it would be to have a Real Doll sitting around when they came by. I guess I could shove it in the closet; there’s barely enough room for that. Or maybe I could leave it out sitting on the couch (in clothes). Maybe that would freak ‘em out.

As long as they didn’t use it. That would be kind of gross. And disappointing. I mean, if I spend a lot of money on a sex doll, I expect it to be faithful to me. Is that too much to ask?

Sure, I know what you’re thinking. I’m just a super horny guy willing to pay money for a person-looking mannequin to get his rocks off. But it’s not just about that. No, it’s a bit worse and it makes me question my sanity a little bit.

It would be nice, see, to have someone else around. Even if she didn’t talk much. Or move much. And, hopefully given the situation, didn’t talk very much. She could even be in the bed as I slept which seems like it would be better than having a big bed all to myself.

I would not take her out to dinner or a movie. Or put her in the car so I can use the carpool lane. She would strictly be a homebody. That seems a bit sane, yes? Maybe?

Much like anything else I think about buying, it’ll never happen. I have a hard time ponying up the money for a computer I want, I’m not going to spend twice as much for something like that.

Age

I don’t like to brag or show off. No, it’s true. Whenever I do, something is apt to go wrong. Like, if I had someone in the car with me and was all like, “Check out how fast this car takes off from a stoplight,” then, when I hit the gas something would happen to make me look foolish. Like the transmission falling out. Or pistons shooting up through the hood. Stuff like that.

I’ve been a bit quiet lately because I’ve had some health issues. They cropped up right after I mentioned that I still had, at least, decent health. So, there you go. It’s nothing serious (so far that I know about), but it’s one thing that’s followed by something else that’s found that requires another visit to a different doctor, etc, etc, etc.

I went to a dermatologist yesterday to see about a mole. Everyone was nice to me. Really nice. The dermatologist herself treated me as if I were some kind of celebrity and kept saying how nice it was to meet me. She was cute. She was younger than me.

And that’s when you start to feel really old. Not just that everyone else is younger than you, but that people are nice to you. I wonder if I were ten, fifteen, years younger if she would have treated me the same (assuming that she was the same age). I think people tend to forget that, despite a large age difference, people still have an active sex drive and that it’s fairly common for older people to find younger people attractive.

I’m still waiting for the announcement that ‘they’ have figured out how to extend life and keep people looking younger longer. I actually don’t think it’s that far out; maybe not in my lifetime, but maybe not much longer than that. Which would figure.

But age is weird, anyway. Living from birth to age 30 seems like a really long time. Living from 30 to 60… yeah, it doesn’t seem that long at all. For most of your life you’re old, which is why it’s amusing to us to watch the younger generation act all high and mighty. Like thinking old people shouldn’t be on the Internet. Or lording over their mastery of SnapChat. Whatever that is.

That’s the way it goes, though.

Future

Girls weren’t into me in school but I believed that one day, maybe through work or something, I find a great woman and we’d go out for a while and then we’d get married.

We would have a child or two and live out in the suburbs. I’d do dad things like play catch, throw a football around, get suckered into tea parties with Mr. Flopsy and Mrs. Patchquilt. My wife would do wife things and make me do wife things just to be fair.

We’d have friends and throw New Years parties and Halloween parties and have family over for Thanksgiving and Christmas. We would head off on vacations and have fun but tiring times.

The kids would get married and have kids of their own and we’d do the grandparent thing and spoil the kids rotten.

At some point, I guess, I would pass away surrounded by my family.

None of that happened. I have been married, but they never worked out very well. I never had kids of my own. I don’t even have friends so there’s no point in throwing parties.

Some people have no regrets; I have nothing but. I wouldn’t recommend it.

Decision

Wherein I make a decision and then rescind that decision and do quite a lot of waffling about it.

My life isn’t terrible. Granted, I don’t have any friends (not true, I have 1 1/2 friends), I don’t have family that cares about me (mostly true, but not entirely), I don’t have a family of my own (totally true), and women, as a rule, don’t care for me very much.

Unlike some people, however, I have a job and a place to live. I’m in mostly good health. I have a cool car. So, there you go. I have stuff.

The question, I guess, is was it worth it? All the things that happened to me, that I went through, that I put myself through… Was it all worth it to bring me to this place where I am now?

I haven’t done anything really good in my life. I haven’t cured cancer. I haven’t brought joy to millions. I’ve done a lot of nothing, really. So I thought, “What if I used this new blog thing to write about my life?” I started it to keep it away from people I knew so I could write freely without offending anyone. The only way someone would find it would be by searching for it and I don’t think anyone cares enough to bother.

You may be confused. If I have people that I don’t want to offend, why don’t I have friends or family that gives a crap? I have a lot of acquintences on social media. Most of them I’ve never met, they’re just people I ended up connecting with online. I’m also connected with my family, although there isn’t much interaction. I’m sure if I said that they didn’t care they’d be up in arms saying it wasn’t true. But, you see, that would be the only interaction I would get. It would literally take offending them to be noticed by them.

So I’m not too worried about someone searching and finding this.

Writing about my life would be difficult for me. I recognize that, in the past, I wasn’t the best person I could have been. Some would argue that, too, saying that I was a perfectly wonderful person. I know better.

My hope would be that someone might read it, see the mistakes I made and then not do them. It’s just that simple. In reality, I could just make a short bullet list of things not to do and get it over with really quick. That loses impact, though, when there’s no context given. For example, you can go ahead and tell someone not to spend a lot of money on stupid things but they’re going to do it anyway because, hey, who knows what will happen in the future? But when you tell them not to spend money on stupid things because they might need it in the future for something important, then it begins to take shape that there are ramifications for actions.

Maybe, then, I can do a good thing for someone else by pointing out the errors I have made.

On the other hand, some people just don’t get it unless they make their own mistakes. There’s no way around that.

On the other, other, hand do I want to give away that much information about myself? And, also, I would need to be considered an unreliable narrator. Not out of a desire to mislead, but because I can have a pretty poor memory, sometimes. Also everything I say is colored by who I am and my own expectations and realizations.

Maybe I should think about this some more.