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My Robot Is Pregnant theme song!

tough guy poetry and manly stories of loneliness
all contents copyright Jon Rolston 2004, 2005, 2006

July 16, 2008

Why? This is the 2 am club. The bar Huey Lewis is standing in, sports coat slung over his shoulder as he thinks, “I want a new drug.”

That’s why.

July 15, 2008

cardboard shuffle

I promised myself I would never collect cardboard and sell it back at the recycler. It just seemed so low. But curiosity got to me, and today I had a bunch in the back of the truck so I called around to find out where and how to turn it in. It probably helps that I have a limp (bad ankle from the fight last weekend) and long hair and an army jacket on today. It really got me into the deranged-vet-hardscrabbling-the-city-for-some-beer (heroin?)-money mentality.

I found a place at Pier 96, down in the industrial end of town naturally, that was buying back with a minimum of 150 pounds. I wasn’t sure how much I had so I headed to a warehouse I’d made a few deliveries to in my time. Like a pot of gold a big ol’ stack of boxes was waiting, and they were already broken down! I had just thrown a stack in the bed and was back in the dumpster on the loading dock when this large angry man started throwing my boxes out of my truck and screaming,”You’re stealing my cardboard! Unload this shit now!”

I started fast talking an apology and he said, “You know how much the garbage company charges me if I don’t leave them the recycling?”

“No sir, no, I wouldn’t have any idea.”

“20,000 a month!” Spittle came out of his mouth with the dollar amount. His face was red. Is this why more people aren’t recycling cardboard?

“I sure am sorry, I didn’t realize it was stealing.”

He got into a pick up and drove away, and guys on another loading dock gave me the meanest look. Like I was junkie caught stealing a laptop. I’d have to hope I had my 150 pounds already. On to Pier 96. It’s a long drive down a really rough road and there are cranes for loading ships looming in the distance. The city police have a driving course marked out with fluorescent yellow and red cones on a huge swath of pavement behind chain link fence. It’s where they come to learn how to drive 120 mph down Lombard.

The other side of the street is a windowless processing center. Just before I hit the bay there is a weigh master – she is nearly five feet tall and Asian. She gives me a plastic card that reads “13” and tells me if I have less than 150 pounds “no money.”

Machines are baling up plastic like it is hay and fork lifts are loading it into trucks. Same goes for paper and aluminum. Gotta feed the machines. The Tide detergent bottles stand out in the compressed mash. I remember that.

I pull the truck into a huge open warehouse, just drove in through a twenty foot high roll up door. A man in a day-glo safety vest gave me a piece of paper and told me to throw the cardboard on the floor “over by that yellow pole.”

It was easy enough. I drove back out and got on the outbound scale. I’d lost 180 pounds. The weigh master gave me 11 dollars and 73 cents. Not bad. Cardboard’s selling for 130 bucks a ton these days. If everything else goes wrong I can do this.


notice the C’s are all slightly bigger than the rest of the letters…

July 14, 2008

Sunday learnin’

You ever play PhotoHunt at the bar? For a buck you get two nearly identical pictures of a woman in a state of semi-undress, quite often soaked in baby oil. (For extra fun, play two player and choose Babes for one and Hunks for the other. It freaks out the guys around you when some stud in white Bikini briefs lounging amongst gaily colored balloons flashes on the screen.)

The game involves finding five areas that have been slightly photo-shopped and touching that area on the touch sensitive screen in a given time limit. In the beginning the backgrounds are simple white walls, the errors easy to spot.

“Her heel has two straps on the left!”
“Her hair!”

Usually they make her hair a little longer. A lot of inconsistencies are often in the background, so don’t spend a lot of time staring at her boobs if you want to win. There is a bigger life lesson there.
As you and your friends gather round winning game after game and you are up in the 250,000 point range, suddenly the backgrounds get dark, out of focus, and very cluttered. Fabrics suddenly involve paisleys and panties are not sweet plain white, but involve layers of intricate black lace with strings and ribbons.

You’re drunkest friend will reach over your shoulder and start pressing randomly on the screen shouting “somethings weird with her navel!” This only takes time off your timer so grab his fingers and bend them backwards. It’s not the best way to spend a Sunday afternoon. At one point Doug was using his tongue to highlight errors on a foxy brunette taking a bubble bath. I had to turn my Tequila shot over to him to prevent any infection from setting in.

“Have a good day!” the bartender said as we got up to leave. The bright sun punished our eyes and Doug said, “I don’t think its a good sign we’re leaving a bar drunk and it’s hardly past lunch time.”
He was right, but I’ll have to tell the rest of the story another time.

what accent is that?

This came from Linger somewhere in Boston. What accent is that?

July 12, 2008

good news for modern man

July 11, 2008

I fought a guy at work today. We ended up on the ground and I was biting his shoulder as he dug his chin into my chest while I had him in a headlock. Somehow right about then I sprained my ankle. I’ve always had pretty weak ankles – part of the reason I’m six foot five and don’t play basketball – but this was ridiculous. I wasn’t even on my feet! Sometimes I hate my body.

But whatever. I didn’t mention it after the fight which kind of ended in a draw. I have a great reach and fight dirty – at one point I grabbed the guys nose and tried to pull it off – but this guy had endurance. What really embarassed me was that he’s a smoker. How can a smoker be healthier than me? But there it is. You turn 35 and you can’t go like you used to. It’s all ice packs and band aids.

So I thought I’d share this taqueria wall painting of some other San Francisco has beens: the 49ers. They suck too. But to be fair, I never was a world champ. Loss comes easy to me.

July 10, 2008

remember when America was number one?

Judging by our toilet paper we are number two.

July 8, 2008

taggers suck

Tagging? It’s the worst manifestation of the American Dream. It’s all about signing your name on something in order to claim ownership – but having no real right to do so. It’s like claiming a country other people already live in. Of course our government at least had some muscle to back up their illegitimate claim. Taggers are weak. They go to the poor, the downtrodden, (wait a minute – that’s usually what our country does too…) and write all over the poor and the downtrodden’s shit. You never see them tagging up power centers like police stations, police cars, fire departments, the mayor’s office, insanely wealthy communities, or even upper middle class areas. They are afraid. So they try to take from those who can’t fight back.

It takes more than writing your name or painting your ugly malformed line-drawing on something to really own it. Ownership involves working. Taggers like to think they are outside the system. They don’t want to work the 9 – 5. Of course, the people they target work much more than 9 – 5. Usually it is the vehicles of dirt poor cardboard and bottle recyclers they spray paint. People working hard to get out of the neighborhood the young white middle class taggers come blow up. Taggers pretend to be above the system, but they want to be President. They want power. They are evil Republicans in gutterpunk hoodies.

They have no message. It’s “Me! Me! Me!” It’s “I was here!” It’s “Look where I went!” It’s “Look what I did!” They are at a fourth grade level at best. Very few are actually making something interesting to look at. There are a few rare examples of great street artists who have inspired lazy name scrawlers across the country to spray noxious chemicals and toy-ass doodles on everything they can. Artists have a message, taggers just want to put their names on things that don’t belong to them so they won’t feel insignificant. Look at that piece of shit throw up some douche bag put on my truck and ask yourself, “Is that the next generation of art?” If it is, art sucks.

July 7, 2008

Domestic Spying is For Nazis

a little known part of Oakland – jingletown

After seeing George Bush lose the popular vote and still become president, and then watch him get re-elected after proving himself an idiot and a lackey, I lost faith in America and the process of democracy we call voting. With an electoral college, my vote truly did not count. It simply was a gentle breeze that could possibly sway an electoral voter.

When I read here and there about George Bush asking phone companies to turn over records and content of phone messages without a warrant, I kinda figured, “Well, they were fighting terrorism.” It was illegal for the government to ask, and illegal for the companies to comply. It went against the very Constitution of The United States which guarantees us protection against warrantless spying. Turns out the president’s office was involved in illegal monitoring before 9/11. It’s also coming to a vote TOMORROW in the Senate to grant the phone companies immunity from breaking the law and our trust as citizens. More importantly the Senate will vote whether or not we should continue to allow the Executive Office to continue to eavesdrop on all electronic communication without a warrant.

THAT IS INSANE! I didn’t think much how that would affect me when it was mentioned. What it means is one branch of the government has the right to spy without any checks or balances from the other branches of government. That’s consolidation of power, like creating a Fuhrer. As it was explained to me in this video, any member of congress who is embarrassed about any activity, illegal or completely legal, can now be quickly brought in line with the President’s wishes by blackmail. How easy would it be to find some embarrassing fact about you if I had complete access to all your credit card purchases, the content of all your emails, locations of all your phone conversations and a recording of what you said during them? For a politician who has so many different faces for different audiences, it would take about half an hour to find something to use against them. Remember, it is the House of Representatives and the Senate that make up our Congress, the body that is supposed to be a check on the power of our President.

So often I hear news about how the government works and I lose hope I didn’t realize I had. I feel very insignificant. There is really nothing we can do to stop this right? Well, there is one small hope. CALL YOUR SENATORS! YOU HAVE TWO OF THEM! TELL THEM NOT TO PASS THE “FISA BILL”! Go to eff.org and click on the top left area that says “Don’t Shred The Constitution”. There are fireworks. You can’t miss it. Then you type in your zip code and it tells you the phone number of your congresspersons. There is a script that you can read into the phone. It will take you approximately one minute to preserve some last shred of freedom. Of Democracy. This is truly important and you have today to do. They vote tomorrow. PLEASE MAKE ONE SMALL EFFORT TO BE A CITIZEN OF A DEMOCRACY!

I moved from New Hampshire where the politics go against what I believe in to a state that often (but not always) reflected my own philosophies. Both my senators (Feinstein and Boxer) are pledging to challenge this, but most Senators are going along with it. I’m going to call my senators now and thank them for having some soul. Call yours and tell them what you want. There’s no guarantee they’ll listen, but if this bill passes, so will any opportunity for you to have any influence at all with them, ever again.

July 6, 2008

all alone

I asked this guy if he was married and he said, “I don’t have a wood chipper yet,” and that was the end of the conversation for me. Some other guys were talking about getting internet roommates to help with rent because they wouldn’t take up much space. None of us could figure out exactly how it would work. It all points to people not liking other people. I fantasize about not leaving my house for a whole week. I would paint the walls, read books, look out the window at the setting sun turning the western fronts of buildings pink and then everything turning to dusk, I’d go through my shoes and make the tough decision to donate a few pairs, I’d lay on my bed and take a nap and later I’d wake up and be amazed at my own dreams. I wouldn’t mind seeing a whole lot less people.

dance craze

a comic Doug and I took turns drawing. guaranteed not to make sense.

July 4, 2008

you’re free, right?

happy independence day…

(photo from who killed bambi)

July 3, 2008

happy anniversary

Our pal Sean had his 8th wedding anniversary. I like to think this is the fate marriage saved him from.

(as far as I can tell this piece by Rick Baker is done on a computer with modeling software)

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