Wednesday, December 31, 2008


The plan was to go to the bank after work even though comic day isn't until Friday. That was kiboshed by the snow being constantly pelted in my face. S'okay, wasn't that critical. After taking care of some E-Mails and some cereal for lunch, I went down for a nap so I wouldn't be passing out tonight. Getting up, I went to go get the new traditional White Castle. Also included in the spread was Sweedish Meatballs, mini pizzas and pigs in blanket.

We watched Dick Clark and the Twilight Zone as usual, and then cracked open a bottle of Martinellis when the ball dropped. I tried to text people at midnight, which proved to be a bad idea as the network was jammed up by people with similar ideas. My most clver one was the one I sent to Tommy and Liz; a pic of one of the White Castles. Then it was the Honeymooners for the rest of the night, along with some chatting and some Index work.

Can I tell you, I'm sick of channel 11 changing names? It was WPIX first, then became the WB, then the CW, and now it's back to PIX. I think even the announcer guy was sick of having to re-record his lines every few years as he sounded pretty lifeless this marathon.

2008 had it's ups and downs. It actually started off pretty crappy, got hella good, went to crap again, but finished with a bang. Let's see what '09 brings.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008


Everyone went out super light today, although not enough for many route absorptions. I had finished my stuff by 9:30, and sent out the help call even though it was quiet. After about 10 mins I called Damien to confirm if I could go in or not, and just as I cleared with dispatch suddenly there were two help calls, both replacements for the regular drivers. I decided to drive down to the first guy that called. He gave me four stops, and luckily my last one had a brief problem with the address as I forgot my door tags and got away with another scan. I came back to the station and threw it into the outbound with a "corrected" label. Simple, effective.

Monday, December 29, 2008


Let me tell you about this special kind of asshole I had to deal with today.

I just pull up to my block and get a semi-decent parking spot. I walk down to the muni-meter, right past a traffic cop. I mean, right past...any closer we woulda hit. So I'm getting my muni tag and I see the cop checking out my truck. He looks RIGHT AT ME and I wave, pointing to the machine. I head back there to see him writing me up a ticket. I cursed him out.

Now, I know I don't have to pay for the ticket, and believe me I was nowhere near as pissed as I woulda been had it been my truck. But, on principle alone the guy was wrong. He SAW ME PASS HIM, which he claims he didn't, and saw me at the machine. He was wrong. He was a quota filler. Instead of manning up and admitting his mistake, he tells me just send it in with my tag and it'll get dismissed. No, that's not how it should have been. You should have manned up and said you were wrong; you were an overzealous douchebag trying to fill your quota before the year ended.

To you, sir, I say go fuck yourself. I have no respect for your kind who help give the badge a bad name.

Sunday, December 28, 2008


Today's CT meeting took place at the infamous Athenian diner in Middleton. This is where a good number of those meetings, at least the ones I heard about, happened.

But first, the train ride. Alex and his wife came as well, and as I figured his connecting train in Stamford was the train I was on. I had just finished up the Iconic bumper story I was writing and watching Season 3 of Lois & Clark along the way, between talking to them.

Liz came to pick us up after a busy morning with her ma and sis shopping, then away we went. We got there incredibly early so wandered around the nearby shopping plaza some. Wasn't many stores left open there, so we went into a Staples and a Home Depot to help kill the time. Finally, it was decided we'd have a preview of lunch by eating at the Friendly's across the street from the diner. I've never been to one before, and gotta tell ya with the bitchy waitress we had and the shitty White Castle-nevergonnabe burgers I ate don't look like I'm going to one again. I had gotten a $9.99 all-inclusive meal, so I stayed for a lousy 2-scopp ice cream sundae since I wasn't gonna be ripped for $10 for the crap I ate already. Nowhere near as good as Court Square or Anapoli.

We headed to the diner where Albie was supervising the tables being set up for us. It was a pretty good turn out, much bigger than last time. That was probably due to our guest speaker, comic historian William Foster. He talked about blacks in comics, and brought along some examples to show us. Nice guy, easy to talk to. Didn't know me from jack but we talked a bit like this was our 100th time meeting or something. And yes, I did eat another burger there. Lousy too, but better than Friendly's, at least.

Once we finished and mingled, Liz abducted us back to her place where she showed Alex and Yadira her art. I had already seen most, if not all of it, the first time so I sat that one out and ended up crashing on her fluffy chair for a bit. Couldn't blame me for being tired, considering I went to bed a little later than I planned and she decided to text me at 5AM thinking I'd be at work. Pain in the ass. On our way out, her mother, who was cooking all the time, gave us little care packages of this Spanish meat thing she makes once a year and her super-spicy sauce that goes with it. I'll be damned if I could spell the name even if I could remember it.

The ride home went quicker. I tried to get some sleep, but apparently my power nap was enough to keep me going. I tried to do some writing, but gave up halfway home and just watched more L&C. Got home and tried the meat thing. It was alright, but not my cup o' tea. Ma loved it, though she wasn't prepared for the spiciness of the sauce. I will say this much; I never pictured Liz as much of a cook, but goddamn she makes some great sugar cookies. She gave a bunch to us and I couldn't stop eating them on the train.

Last night I had finished up most of my Index entries. I got about 20 done and sent them over to my contact, Al. I thought I had ironed out most of my mistakes, but he pointed out a stupid one I left in a couple. D'oh! So I went to fix those and re-sent them tonight. Getting the hang of their criteria, but still not 100% yet. Also looks like he's gonna pass off a buncha Spideys to me as nobody's doing the Iron Man section and he's gonna end up having to do them all. Unfortunately, I only have one issue from the current run we're doing, so I'm gonna bang that out the help. Once we hit the 100s, though, I'll be able to do more.

Thursday, December 25, 2008


Christmas was small, but decent. Nobody had bothered to get French Toast Sticks (and I forgot to look when I went to the store) so I bought an extra loaf of bread yesterday that we could have french toast instead. They were goooooooood. I think I ate too much, but anyways...

My haul this year included the Garfield Holiday DVD, the Grinch animated DVD, a registration holder, a tire gauge, the Marvel Vault museum book, underwear, a winter hat, an Amazon gift card, a McDonald's gift card and a basic laptop for my writing travels. Apparently I was supposed to get a Subway gift card but that hadn't arrived yet, and some of pops' friends got the Hess trucks for us so we don't have them yet. Liz also gave me the X3 Wolverine bust (which is frikken HUGE!) and a ghetto-ized 1971 Chevelle die-cast. The fun part was we were texting while opening so it was almost like opening them together, which was surreal. And she liked hers, luckily.

I finished up my article for Estella, did a little Marvel Index work, and then got dragged to the home to see gma. Fortunately, it was one of her bad days so we didn't stay too long. And when we got back, I was able to grab a spot on the right side of the street, so now the cars are all nice and parked for Monday.

Like I said with Thanksgiving, the thing that sucks about this job is these holidays, you work, forced to go to bed early 'cause you're tired, then you hafta go to bed early when you're off for work the next day, making it a typical day. Blah.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008


This morning was treacherous. The streets and sidewalks were all covered with a thin sheen of ice, making them slippery as all hell. You'd think you were stepping on just rain-soaked ground, but nope...ICE! Crazy, man.

Late freight meant I was shuttling once again, but this time I made sure I was out at a reasonable time. I got the same routes but took their keys to walk the packages over to the trucks themselves. A lack of parking extended my time some, as well as getting stuck with a package that belonged to someone else, but I amanged to make it back and get out my normal time.

The plan was to do some work on my article and the Index as well as wrapping some gifts, the last of which arrived today luckily. However, I ended up taking several cat-naps over the course of the day. I didn't do any serious wrapping until somewhere around 3:30 AM in the front room while watching A Christmas Story for the 3rd or 4th time. TC and Fuzzy got in my way when I was doing Pops', being his was so large. I laid it down on the floor on the paper and was measuring the top half so I could see where to cut it, and both of them got under it as I was doing. Nuts.

I wrapped D's first so I could go over to his place as we usually do. However, this time the exchange was one-sided as his gift for me hadn't arrived yet. Ah well, he can give it to me when I come over to play video games while he's laid up from his next knee surgery on the other knee. We talked for a bit and watched A Christmas Story (something we haven't done for a couple years 'cause he got sick of it).

Another tradition also bit the dust as ma had us watch It's A Wonderful Life on NBC isntead of catching A Christmas Story when the marathon started. I like to leave the movie on the full 24 hours, not touching the dial, but was not to be this time. At least I saw it several times today, and I'm sure I will several more tomorrow. Great freakin' movie.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008


The flights were all late, so we had a reduced force go out and the rest of us held back to do some shuttling. I told them I could give them till 1 the latest, but ended up staying till 2:30! First I had to go around and dtop some freight off to some of the guys, and then I went out with another load and was told to sit in one spot and wait for them to come. They, of course, took their sweet time about it. I did brng B-sets for their trucks in case they took TOO long, but I only needed them for Rory as I got sick of waiting and circled back around to drop in his truck. I was also able to give my first stop his Xmas card from me. I had a bunch for the guys there, but not doing my route put a damper on handing them out.

Today was also the station Xmas party. Because I was so late on the road, I was more interested in leaving than staying any later. Screw it. I don't even LIKE most of these people. At least I'll be making up some of the difference for Xmas day with the overtime I put in today.

And once again, the city screwed me on the parking. I figured I'd get it set up in case they didn't cancel alternate side again, and of course they did. Stupid city.

Monday, December 22, 2008


The snow wasn't going anywhere anytime soon, as today was another arctic day and it had been cold most of the weekend. That of course told me alternate side would be cancelled, however checking the NYC website last night said it was still in effect. Then, of course, I hear on the radio it WAS, in fact, cancelled. Stupid asses.

Friday, December 19, 2008


I had ordered the last of my presents yesterday from Amazon because they said that was the deadline to order in order to get stuff before Xmas. Checking my Amazon account and their status, they all said to expect delivery AFTER. I was like WTF?! Hopefully that's just a guestimate and not fact, otherwise the 'rents're gonna be getting their stuff a little later than planned.

In a related story, one of Liz's missing presents arrived today. D'oh! Ah well, I'll give it to her next Sunday when I go up for the meeting.

My main building had their Christmas party today, well the maintenance guys anyway, and I was invited. I figured this year I'd partake, missing last year's. It was a fun affair in the building's sub-basement. The various maintenance and elevator guys popped in and out, the good one dressed as Santa briefly and people sat on his lap, the UPS guy and Rory were there, and so were two of the building managers. They had a nice spread, from a giant sandwich to a chocolate fountain to food the maintenance guy who invited me made himself. It was a fun time. The odd thing was it felt like I was down there before. The place just seemed so familiar, and yet I'm sure I haven't. Weird. But I'm glad I went.

We had snow before this year, but it was little shit that came and went. Today was our first REAL snowfall, and it was sticking but good. We had a good couple inches by the time it was done. What really sucked was when I went to go shovel the sidewalk, I got a spasm in my right shoulder so I had to do it left handed the rest of the way. And, of course, the back aches ensued. Damn, I hate getting old...

Because of the snow, Liz's sister decided to cancel the trip to NY they planned for tomorrow. I was of course invited to come hang, but guess my day just freed up!

Thursday, December 18, 2008


Hearing on the radio that today was the last best day to ship in order for things to get to where they need to be before Xmas, so when I got home I rushed to pack up Liz's presents. Yeah, presents. Plural. Here's a little secret; when I get people a lot of stuff, it's not 'cause I'm generous like people think. It's 'cause I never know what to get nobody and so I get them a lot in case one thing sucks, there's replacements to make up for it. Of course, two of the items I ordered haven't come yet. One is delayed until January, so I'll give her that at Comiccon.

Anyway, I wrapped her stuff and put it together, then did g'ma's too (got her the newest Danielle Steele novel as always). Wrapping and packing ended up taking a while, so I hadda rush to the post office before it closed. Luckily, it was surprisingly dead. Usually there's like that last-minute rush.

The rest of Liz's presents for me arrived as well. Two more packages in a moving box she customized for a better fit, and jammed full of plastic bags as a buffer. Well, at least we got plenty of bags now. I threw the presents next door until next week.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008


A strange package arrived for me today. I thought it mighta been something I ordered, but I opened it up to find a Marvel Legends Wolverine figure in there from a toy store I never heard of. With no note of any kind in there I was trying to figure out its origin, when it hit me: Liz. Sure enough, she ordered and had it sent to me. Nutjob.

Saturday, December 13, 2008


I had planned to keep my Marvel appointment a closely guarded secret until I signed the paperwork and made it all final, but Bob spilled the beans at the meeting along with his own appointment. So now, I just tell anyone who cares.

The meeting was large, as it normally is, made so by the presence of some MA and CT members, including Liz. Ran through our usual routine, covered all the important stuff, and even got three new members out of the deal. However, having new members was ill-timed thanks to Mark announcing he and Keith are splitting from working together. Nothing bad or malicious, just going in different directions with their own projects while still working together if they so desire. While it wasn't anything BAD, I just didn't think we needed new members to hear that at their first meeting. Bad message to send day 1, but what can ya do. Hopefully, they took it the way it was intended to be taken.

Lunch was a little tighter than usual. The diner we go to is under renovations and they closed off the entire back section where we usually eat, so we had to take a corner of the main diner and populate several tables. Most of the members left, including Sue, Hector, Everett and Joe as their wheelchair access was MIA and Keith wanted to check out some locations for the holiday party anyway. I sat with Liz and Alex, all of us ended up split from the group by a table, but we had some fun.

Everyone opted out of seeing the Punisher (thankfully!), which was fine as Liz wanted me to show her this anime place in the city. She looked around for a bit and commented that they were seriously overpriced. Not surprising, it IS New York. We headed next for the Best Buy closest to Grand Central so she could pick up a gift for a friend, as well as her own copies of two of the Jeff Dunham specials. I kinda got her hooked last November when I showed her the Achmed clip on Youtube.

I was attempting to do some Xmas shopping online tonight. This year has been a mix of ease and difficulty. The few friends and associates I got stuff for were easy. but I've no clue what to get my 'rents. Ebay and Amazon have been a boon this year, and I've also decided to try out those American Express gift cards for a change of pace. If they work out well, I may do some more next year. But, we shall see.

Friday, December 12, 2008


The week was too good, culminating in this hellish Friday we had. They were moving machines into my main building, taking up the loading dock so I had to do one cart at a time, saving some for after I did a few outside stops. Of course, those outside stops, the elevators there were all funky and what not. Basically it was me against the wind. I had to cheat to make my last stop, but made it I did.

To reward myself, I decided to finally give in and get some of the delicious cookies I keep smelling in this one building. They weren't bad. Nice and soft, tasty. They were a nice cap to the clusterfuck the day became.

That warm feeling didn't last long, though. I went to get gas and took the highway back, and by Pier 54 I saw a dog on a leash lying ont he median very still. I dunno if it was just lounging in the sun or if someone hit it and that's where it lay 'cause it didn't move for crap and I was going too fast to see any breathing. I brought the truck back, finished out my shift, then proceeded to walk back up there to check on it. It was gone, though. Hopefully it got up and walked away and wasn't carted like trash.

I headed to Union Square to catch the train back and stumbled upon a Christmas bazaar. They had a lot of booths with a ton of different items. I didn't even know they did something like that. I took a few moments to walk around and see all the goodies being offered. I think I might need to make it a point to come on by at least once during the holiday season. Can probably get some good shopping done there.

Thursday, December 11, 2008


Well this has certainly been the year where dreams come true. Not only do I finally get legitimately published, but I've just been accepted to freelance for Marvel's upcoming Official Marvel Index project, and my sample entry was my first submission.

For those that don't know, when I was younger my major dream was to someday work at Marvel. You know, writing comics and what not. All I drew was Marvel stuff as well as my own, making my own little shitty comics and then upgrading to the prose stories I did for years. Sure, that enthusiasm has diminished some with the direction some of the books have taken, but for a budding career having Marvel on your resume doesn't hurt. All I'm waiting on is the paperwork to make it official, but I've pretty much been given the green-light to step forward and start cracking.

The Marvel Index is basically the Cliff's Notes version of reading the actual comics. They collect a run from a series with all the relevant details and a cover pic. Marvel ran quite a few for their various series for a couple of decades, one of which me and the fellas in school used to fawn over dreaming of someday owning all those issues (that being X-Men Index vol. 2 #5, and as of today I DO own most of them...more dreams!). Along with the resurrection of the handbooks, this was the next step, but condensed to contain three titles in one (X-Men, Iron Man and Spider-Man). The Handbook crew is basically working on this again, so they've got some experience. Me, I'm still trying to figure out their criteria and how to write THE perfect entry. Plenty of practice ahead! Hope they're patient enough to give me the time...

Tuesday, December 09, 2008


I decided to start carting my comics with me to work so I can read them on the train back. I was able to read 3 1/2 by the time I reached home. At that pace, I can get through the last remaining recent backissue pile and start chipping away at the backissue pile. Decided to wrap up Wonder Woman first, and gotta say, I'm not really digging it all that much. They've got WW trying to acclimate herself to our world, but the problem is how long has she been with the Justice League? Been off that island for just as long too, so what's the point?

A couple of our Spiderfan cohorts do work for Marvel, mostly on the Handbooks that came out. Apparently, Marvel is bringing back the old index books which chronicle all the issues of a given series, and Bob has been tapped to help out. Seeing all the work involved, he decided to try and get me a gig in that. He sent me all the guidelines and demos, and I banged out an old Spidey issue I had handy as a sample. I sent it off to our guy, and he's gonna theoretically pass it on to the leader on the project to see if they can use me. What would that mean? Well, not only would I be freelancing for Marvel Comics, but actually getting PAID to write. Okay, yeah, it's not the kinda writing I wanna do, but gotta start somewhere. Plus, it's very similar to how I've been running the Comicguide all these years, so practice I've got a-plenty. Stay tuned.

Monday, December 08, 2008


Today was the coldest day of the year, bottoming out in the singles with wind chill. It warmed up some, but mostly only to me. I did need gloves for a good period of the day, but it didn't get to where I needed the wool cap all day or to roll down my sleeves.

Like last Monday, we came in early, we left early, I got parking and finished in no time, and had to go help the same guy and had yet another frieght delay. But, it was all good. Service was made, everyone had a great Monday. I could do with LOTS more of those.

Now Wednesday, that's supposed to be warm. SHORTS warm. Crazy weather, eh?

Sunday, December 07, 2008


If you were considering seeing Punisher: Wat Zone...don't. The movie is HORRIBLE. It was a mindless action flick with over-the-top fight scenes, piss-poor acting, bad attempts at accents and fake New York with neon lights every fucking where. I equate it to the rated-R version of Batman & Robin. It wasn't ALL bad. The fights were entertaining, Ray Stevenson was a decent Punisher, and Microchip wasn't as annoying as he could have been. But that's about it. I just hate I'm probably gonna end up stuck seeing it again next week after the meeting. There was a kind of circle effect here as the movie was only playing on Court Street. Court Street is where we had to see the last Punisher, the BETTER Punisher.

There was also an extended trailer for The Spirit, and that looks like shit as well. Frank Miller is obsessed with this stylistic way of filming first seen in Sin City and he uses it EVERYWHERE. Plus, with as little I've read of The Spirit I KNOW damn well this movie is NOTHING like the comics. I even went around to read what other fans thought, and it turns out it's NOT Will Eisner's Spirit, it's Frank Miller's interpretation...which means I'll probably fall asleep during it. I'll debate if I'm gonna see it now or not.

After lunch, we headed up to 11th Avenue so I could hit the Hallmark there. Every year ma orders ornaments off their site, but this year they removed that option forcing us to hafta go to a store. The closest one employs the sister of a former family friend who became an asshole a few years ago, so she didn't wanna go there to avoid the drama. Since some of those ornaments are part of my collections, I went. I decided to pay for the ones I wanted, which ended up being $130. Hers rounded out at $102. Crazy how expensive this crap gets.

The mission for this week is to write some Xmas stories. Superhero Hype is holding a fanfic contest and I've got four ideas churning around. One includes updating and finishing a Wolverine story I drew back in the day, two variations of the same Marvel Team-Up idea, and the Ghostbusters story I've had in mind for the last 2 years. Hopefully, I get the peace I need to do ANY of them.

Saturday, December 06, 2008


I was supposed to go with D to see The Punisher today, but he forgot he had a shift to cover so it's bumped to tomorrow. Today I did tomorrow's plan of finishing the decorating. Boy, was it hell.

Tangles, cords, positioning statues, burnt out lights, bad garland... The real problem was I was trying to do everything by how other people established, but their establishments were designed to make it easier for THEM. So it was frustrating and as the night went on I REALLY didn't wanna do no more. But, the nativity set is up, the downstairs rails are lighted, and it's all done. The trestle for the front door needs some reworking, so that's down till next year.

I am now officially beat...and we STILL didn't do anything IN the apartment, thanks to these two.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008


I love that months ago I was told to come back to one office if I had the same registration problems for school I've been having, and the lady tells me she dunno why since there's nothing they could do even if the error was on part of the school. Fantabulous. What she WAS able to do for me was tell me a whole LAUNDRY LIST of prerequisites for just ONE of the classes I wanted to take. I'm like whaaaaaaaaaaa....? Where in the hell did they all come from? They're not in the course catalogue. They're not listed on their schedule search. I asked what the hell are we supposed to take if its not listed nowhere, and all she kept giving me was a company line response. I hate administrators.

So I registered online for Media 180 as per her list she read off that I'm not even sure I need, while looking for another that they added to Film 101 to unlock more advanced classes, Film 151. THE CLASS DOESN'T EVEN EXIST! I need to call the film department and see how the hell we're supposed to proceed with our major when the classes THEY say we need to take aren't even available to take! I mean COME ON!

I had actually gotten a jump on X-mas shopping this year. I got some things from Amazon and Ebay, forgetting to get something for the gma in the home but I'll get that later. One benefit of wasting my time going to the school was being able to pass by this store and pick up one part of an Xmas present. Figure that was easier than spending WAY more than I needed to on shipping between boroughs, for crissakes. I've got a few more to go, and am absolutely clueless on those. So, any friends who read this, TELL ME WHAT YA WANT!

Tuesday, December 02, 2008


I told the freight guy when he said he was gonna be off today that meant my day was gonna be shit, and boy was I right. We ended late again, I ended up parking all the way down the block again, the SLOWEST operator was on the freight, and I had a ton of stops and pieces. I skipped my usual routine and did the heavier stops as soon as I could, but still ended up with 13 lates. Technically 14, but a pair of suitcases had the same barcode to scan so only one could be registered. I take comfort in knowing my 6th floor stop can at least never get a refund because they get their stuff early...I just may not scan it in time, so I hafta count it even though its already there.

Oh, and that was all on top of my being recruited to do first overnights. Someone called out and they were desperate, so they sent me out. The truck I ended up taking as a piece of shit that kept stalling out when I hit the gas, that shoulda been my first clue. I never did FOs before so I didn't know where half the shit was or where to go, not even with my quick rundown. I hadda go meet another truck at 31st street to get the rest of my packages...where I ended up dropping my keys and locking them in the back of the truck without realizing till I went to go use them. D'oh! I hadda wait for Damien to get their with the other set so I could go do my deliveries. Now, even if I hadn't made that stoopid mistake right there, I had left a good 15 minutes later than an FO driver should have, making it not look good in the first place. Add to that the person who was supposed to direct me at the Javits center wasn't there, leaving me with only two completed stops. Nick had told me after 8 just pull it on back, so I did and threw the rest of my packages into the sort. LAST TIME, I hope. That shit is not for me.

Today was registration day for me in college. And, again, I was blocked by my need for prerequisites that I have NO clue what they could be. All the classes I'm going to take all say that all I need is Film 101, which I took AND passed. So tomorrow after work I'm heading up to the school to see WTF.

Pops being home means the TV is usually occupied. And he hates the Daily Show pair, so I can't watch my reruns at the ONLY time I'm able. But, I decided to try out their full episode downloads yesterday and now that's what I'll be doing for the duration of his stay, or whenever I get home super late.

Monday, December 01, 2008


The load wasn't as bad as we all thought it would be. It ended up being a pretty standard Monday. I mean, the OLD Mondays, not the ones this past year. 134 packages, 19 stops, AND we left BEFORE 8. You know what that means? That means PARKING! All the parking I could ever want! Sure, I had to make several trips into the building to drop freight off and reuse my handtrucks, but I had the freight guy helping me and an entire HOUR before most of my stops would even be open to recieve. I was also able to go over and help out with 3 stops. Those almost looked like they were gonna be late 'cause we ended up having to wait for the maintenance guy to fix the elevator in his building for a few minutes. Luckily, it was done with a few minutes to spare.

Sadly, this good a Monday can only mean one thing; tomorrow will suck. Hard.