Tuesday, March 29, 2022

Thursday, January 14, 2016

The long and the short of it

   Those who see me on a regular basis know that I have the ability to grow a fairly grizzled beard.  It's not something that defines me, per say, but it is definitely part of my external imprint.  When you close your eyes and imagine Daris, the blurry oddball you see is axiomatically fuzzy.  The bearded life has treated me well for the last 15 years or so, however, now a days it seems more and more men are beginning to look a lot more like me...or vice versa.  The beard is an over-saturated look; relegating me to associated society of vegans, hipsters, and lazies.  What once was a proud accouterment to my daily attire and expression, has now migrated my association to the likes of men who wear glasses without prescription lenses, or people who vape too frequently, or the proponents of ye-ol' man-bun.  The most frustrating thing about the beard epidemic is that it's really the only part of my body that grows hair in appropriate amounts.  I started going bald around 20 and tapped the bench for a beard that inadvertently became my unanticipated follic symbol, if you will. It's been most places with me as an adult.  It's encompassed many of my meals.  Good times and bad, my beard has toiled with me through it all.  Alas, now we have a situation where every Tom, Dick, and Harry is embracing the previously proud lifestyle of beardom and trending the respectability from it's roots.

   I have cut my beard.  Not shaved, but drastically reduced, in size and stature, the thing I once loved and cherished.  Enjoy the fad fellow facial fozzies.  It treated me with dignity and respect, and I can only hope all you flannel-wearing, skinny jean loving, must-own-one-tiny-dog-and-one-giant-dog, corn cob pipe smoking, Edgar Allen Poe reading maniacs appreciate what you have.  Because it was once mine.  And it loved me.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

It All Ads Up

       Hey there everyone, I wanted to quickly post about something that is becoming more and more prominent on the internet and will undoubtedly lead time my departure from certain media interactions.  With family and friends posting videos of their children, vacations, artistic expression, and quirky animals making strange faces, it seems like the magic of shared video has no where to go but up in terms of popularity and social aspect incorporation.  Cell phone technology explosively advances in both hardware and programming capabilities every 6-9 months, effectively giving anyone with a phone the ability to shoot professional, coherent, and clean video all day, every day.  This is an incredibly useful development for the aforementioned sharing of pets and family outings, etc; but what I’m not overly excited about is the frequency with which these videos are now being preliminarily screened with advertisements.  It is an unsettling fact that over 11,000 video advertisements are viewed by the public…every second.  That’s 29 BILLION a month.  If, in 2012, YouTube had 4 billion views a day (120B a month), which it did, and we are seeing only 29 billion ads a month from the entire internet, imagine how many ads we are going to be seeing when Facebook (1B video views a day today), and YouTube, and every other big name site out there with video streaming services begin utilizing advertisement marketing to ALL videos.  Get excited about all of that wonderful “Retina Screen” technology, the HD computer monitors, and the 4K OLED LCD “something-something bullshit” imaging processors right now, because in the next few years, all you’ll be looking at are 60 second ads followed by the 9 second clip from your sister of your nephew taking his first shit. 

If they show a video ad on this website before, during, or after this blog opens, I'm going to set my computer on fire.  Swear to God.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

You think you have strange dreams...

I'm on a scooter racing down a cold city street, busses and cars abound, my tiny vehicle somehow navigating the paved streets with precision and riveting nimbleness; for some reason a small café is on fire...no time to stop.  I traverse a pack of bicyclists as the road turns to cobblestone; it's night time with the only light coming from overhead street lamps.  After a few blocks, my speed slows, the aggressive maneuvers discontinue, and I come to a stop in the middle of a square.  Wiping the sweat from my brow I know I am in pursuit of something or someone, but I have no idea in which direction to continue.  As I dismount the scooter my foot touches sand. 

The warmth from the sand isn't immediately apparent to my senses as I am still standing in what appears to be a combination of London and San Francisco on a cold night, but my body is telling me that I’m standing in sand with a warm breeze blowing slightly at my cheek.  I blink hard, closing my eyes on the final blink, 1…2…3…

I’m on a beach in the Caribbean.  It’s blinding sunshine and the heat is immense.  The cars that were once in the dark town square are now old and weathered, half buried in sand around me.  The configuration of the cars is identical to my previous location, but it looks as if there has been a shift in scenery, but only in certain broad conditions.  I walk to one of the rusting vehicles and lay my hand upon the roof; it’s still cold.  There’s an explosion behind me and quickly I spin to see smoke coming from a burning café.

The commotion which shakes the ground doesn’t seem to have the effect on anyone but myself.  Come to think of it, there’s no one around.  I become scared at the thought that I’m alone and there is danger present in the form of an anonymous explosion; but in my dream state I’m limited in my control of the body I inhabit.  I break into a sprint towards the smoke, someone might be in danger; there might be someone I can talk to about this place.  My mind says ‘stay’, as my body continues to run.  I have no limitation on stamina; at a full sprint for 200 yards I don’t become winded or strained.  I see the flames now, coming over the combination of tropical trees and city buildings.  As I turn the corner I see the white café, burning from the inside with flames emerging from the front windows like orange eye lashes of a harlequin in the wind.  As I approach, I see a woman sitting in front of the café at one of the wrought iron tables, nary a care in the world.  Her toes dig in and out of the sand as she sips her drink and writes something on a small piece of paper.  She has blonde hair and pouted lips.  She can’t be older than 20 years old.  Shorter than I, with a round face encompassing two large blue eyes, the bangs fall even across her brow, framing her expression as whimsical yet attentive to what she is writing.  She smiles slightly at her own wit or intelligence, never breaking eyes with the page to view the myriad of flames bellowing only feet behind her.  Her yellow and blue dress is scorched at the bottom ruffle as if the heat is beginning to singe her clothing but not affecting her temperament.   I catch her eye and she looks up from her writing; we make contact.  As I open my mouth to speak, I can’t find the words to tell her anything; I’m blank.  The obvious threat to her safety is apparent to me but I cannot seem to vocalize my concerns as she simply stares.  The twenty five feet between us becomes inches, as I see her hair begin to smoke and her skin begin to redden.  I cannot move closer to her to help and my voice will not protrude.  I am no longer a body but only an onlooker as she turns to dust in a moment, the fire consuming her.  I awake in a house.

The panic from the café is still with me as I thrash awake violently.  There is an overwhelming sadness for the girl.  Though I had not known her previously, and hadn’t said so much as a life-saving word to her, I couldn’t help but feel my heart peel away a layer of love for the loss of such a beauty.  A Victorian home with furniture and décor from an era past confuses me as I sit up.  I’m on a couch, or a settee of some kind.  I am able to see my body again, dressed in jeans and a plaid shirt with a jacket draped over the back of the couch.  I stand to see immensely tall lacunar ceilings with chandeliers above and white pillars edging the room.  The house is more of a mansion, and through the sprawling windows across the room I see encompassing fields and tall trees, not another house in sight.  “Hello?”  I am reminded of my recent inability to speak and the poor woman I was unable to save.  I’ll deal with that in time, I need to find my way home from this craziness.  I stand and notice I’m barefoot upon a cool hardwood floor, however, my feet aren’t mine.  The shape is familiar and the length of my toes seems congruent with what I know to be mine, however the size is reduced by nearly half.  My next observation is that my legs don’t seem to be out of proportion with my small feet.  My pants fit fine, and my shirt, though crudely out of style and obviously weathered, is in proper proportion to my body.  How could that be unless…

I’m approximately 10 years old, standing in a house to which I’ve never visited, let alone entered, or even seen for that matter. The fact that I am utterly aware of my retracted age doesn’t cause me alarm as this dystopian transformation from one location and state of affairs to the next has now trumped the concern of my age or circumstance.  My feet make a sticking sound as I walk towards an open door.  I must wonder if the room is really as prolific as I originally conceived, or if my small stature has amplified the opulence of my surroundings.  I peek through the door and around a corner to see a man sitting in a chair in front of a fire place.  No visible fire burns, which brings me a sigh of relief after my recent run-in with the café on the beach.  Even sitting, the man is tall, to which I accredit the comparison to my menial physique.  He has on a brown suit with a blue tie while a moderate and maintained beard covers a stoic and imposing jaw and features.  I slowly present myself to the room and brace for whatever reception is to be expected in this current scenario.  Little would surprise me at this point.  The man turns his head to look in my direction and then looks back to the vacant hearth.  I present myself more notably and enter the room without hesitation; surely we will engage in conversation should I appoint myself more firmly.  A hand grabs my arm and spins me aggressively, pulling me away from my original room and down a hall.  The man remains at the seat, pondering whatever internal queries he may have; while I am trying to endure the force of whatever person or creature has me in tow.  My head reels around to face forward, only to see hair blowing viciously in the wind as the walls begin to move faster and faster.  We are flying through the house, which must be over a mile long by now.  The tapestries on the walls are only blurs of color and light; but I am concerned little with the surroundings at this point, only focused on the hair in front of me and the hand around my arm.  We slam to a halt in a library room with a single chair in the center.  The ceiling and walls in this room must be three, maybe four times the height of the windowed room from earlier.  Massive bookshelves surround me, not a vacant spot amongst the hundreds of thousands of publications comprising a spiraling sea of literature.  My enthrallment subsides long enough to see the face of the person who had brought me here in such an abrupt fashion.  It’s her.

Not unlike our last meeting, I open my mouth to speak words of adoration and joy that she isn’t the pile of ash as I had previously left her, yet nothing comes.  My mouth remains open so long it becomes dry; my lips cracking like a man dying of thirst.  She stares on, looking into my eyes for an eternity beyond an eternity.  My tongue has dried and my eyes pour tears of regret over my inability to articulate my emotions as time continues to carry on.  Around us, books begin to wither and fall, the ceiling cracks and the shelves become brittle and splinter under the weight of the books.  The vines and flora from outside the mansion take hold of the structure and begin to crack floors and shatter windows.  We stare on, into each other’s eyes, never a blink or digression in intensity; never a word spoken.  We age.  

A decade passes in this manner, with her evolving into the woman I remember from the café.  Her eyes blink, breaking us free from the trance that had consumed us for almost a dozen years.  She moves past me, our adaptation abstractly appearing seamless in transition from children to adults.  Her hand touches mine as she moves to a pile of books on the floor, once high and out of reach, now crumbling to dust in a swell of lost knowledge.  Reaching down, she pulls a single, deliberate, piece of paper from the pile, carefully folding it and putting it into my hand.  She turns and walks away, never looking back as she exits the room, leaving me alone with the scrap of paper.  Everything in the world tells me to follow her, no matter where it may lead, but again, my body does not comply with the wishes of my mind.  I stand there, watching her turn the corner and vanish.  I look down to my open palm where there rests the single slip of paper; I slowly unfold the note to reveal its message

“Wake Up”

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Bella Tonight

There's a wine tasting tonight at Bella Fiore wine hut in Carson if anyone is bored and is need of a substantial buzz on the cheap.  I'm actually down here, skipping the wine tasting and going straight to the wine drinking.  Got me a bottle of the good 'ol "F Bomb" and going to stand by and observe the shenanigans that I'm sure will ensue after about thirty minutes of fine wine, random conversation, and mediocre pizza (included!).

Come on down if you are in the area and are bored and need a drink. I'll be here until it ceases to be funny.

The Tinder Complex

Hey there guys, I haven't written anything in an inexcusable amount of time so I figured I should probably supply a smile for the day to those who enjoy smiling...in this case...at my insecurities and misfortune.

As a newly single man, a friend in Georgia enlightened me about a new app called "Tinder" which is essentially a pseudo dating app allowing two people to connect based on 4 pictures and three lines of informative nonsense.  Here's the gist: You are presented pictures of people, presumably in your geographic region and targeted demo, and you can select whether or not this person is attractive enough for your fabricated, nonsensical, standards or not.  At the same time, other Tinder-ers are out there doing the same thing and, upon having made a match in which one person settles for the limited mates within their region as well as the other persons looks, and the other person has had enough beer to allow them to accidentally hit "Like" instead of "Nope", you are pared with each other and a message board is presented to both parties for communication.

Now that I have briefly described the essential operational procedure for this app, let me tell you this: As idiotic as this sounds, and as much of a game as it is supposed to be, in the first week I had only one person match with me.  Carson City (et al) is not a large area and, seeing as there have been easily over 100 women to which I have swiped "Like" or "Nope", I would imagine that there would be at least a few gals out there who wants a piece of this.  I did not despair however, I continued forward with the hopes that everyday there would be new a woman discovering this app thanks to their friend in Georgia.  I was right!  Every day there have been approx 4-5 new faces on the app that now, more than before, carry more weight that when I originally began.  I don't even read the personal quips anymore; hell, I barely look at the pictures.  It just "Like", "Like", "Like".

I'm now 2 1/2 weeks into this app and still, the single match sits, unaccompanied by anyone even remotely interested in a 29 year old, employed, homeowner with family values and a motorcycle.  So, in the spirit of keeping my head up, I decided it was time to broaden the search because, let's face it, there's no reason for me to corner myself into the wildly inappropriate demographic that is 20-40 year old females...

I moved the bar to include women up to the age of 45.  Holy smoking hot meat market, Daris is cougar bait!!  I had 4 matches in the first 10 pictures.  Granted, this was a HUGE confidence booster, until I realized that the "mutual facebook friends" icon, which until now had remained sporadic at best with women being mutual friends with my professional snowboarding friend and bar owning cohorts, was now matching their friends to friends' of my friends' parents.  To put it this way, Tinder had found women who were friends with my mom...and friends with (older) people I know from work...and the lady that works at the Texaco.

After moving the bar down to 20-35...I think I'll just stick to going to bars and finding events in the local rags to meet women.  I don't know if the Tinder Complex I've developed is all that healthy and I don't think I'm ready to go on a date with a woman who keeps her Costco coupons in her day by day vitamin box.  Still, I can't help but look at my phone from time to time and wonder if one of those out-of-reach women has possibly left her child alone with her iphone long enough for the kid to accidentally "Like" Daris' profile.  I guess we'll have to wait and see.

Friday, December 14, 2012

I won the lottery you say? I'll take my payout in baby laughs please.

Just found a video of Dave's son Liam from a couple years ago.  If I could love anything as much as this kid loves a barking dog, I would quit my job and do nothing but that thing.  All the time.  Forever.