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The Year of Living Dangerously
Life On Display

Note: This volume has been edited beyond recognition.

Saturday November 15, 2003

Life has sure gotten a little strange again. I am still amused by the Asylum lua'u. Shirley's presence made quite a profound effect on the usual dynamics of the faculty and staff. In other words, the rumor mill will be churning away. I'm not particularly concerned. I just find it humorous that there will be many wrong guesses about what is going on. Sheesh! I went on my tanning hike up Koko Head again, although it was quite windy. Shirley called while I was on my way home. We chatted for a few minutes, but she could barely hear me. So, I called her back when I reached home. After chatting with Shirley, I left for Ala Moana on the street bus. I did my usual rounds at Ala Moana Beach. Then, I spent the rest of the time at the shopping center. When I returned home, I walked to the gym. After dinner, I drove to Kahala Mall to kill time at Barnes & Noble.

Sunday November 16

Moms is asking me to go along to her church meetings again. At this point in time, I just cannot bring myself to do this. I don't want to be recruited. This is yet another reason I must move on, I suppose. Ever since the Koko Crater fire, the ash and soot has been coating everything. I had to box up my keyboards because I have no cover for it. It's too big for the trash bags that I normally use to wrap all of my crap. Thus, I am not getting in any practice time. Nor have I been reviewing the principles in the Sharma book and conscientiously applying them. I am starting to fall back on my old ways. However, my miserly ways and my need to reduce my possessions are traits that continue to plague me. Although I have the money to buy what I need all at one time, I continue to budget out my purchases over months. It makes no sense since I no longer have a savings goal. Of course, it proves how habits are formed. The only exception to my miserly ways is when I am out socializing. I suppose that I got into that habit this Summer.

I ended up at Border's today, but I was disappointed with the book selection there. So, I meandered back to Ala Moana Center and walked around. Then, I took the bus to Kahala Mall. I rewarded myself with a Jamba Juice smoothie and spent time at Barnes & Noble. It really has become apparent to me that I have no life. I am roaming around aimlessly by myself because I refuse to sit at home. These excursions are doing nothing for me, except to quell the anxiety attacks. When I returned home, I walked to the gym to do my cardio workout. Then, I came home and did my yardboy chores.

With less than two weeks before my B-day, the anxiety attacks have been increasing. I have done nothing in the last two months to alleviate this tragic situation. So, in essence, I just wasted more time. I am also getting sick of wrapping and unwrapping my possessions every time I need to use them. All of these pathetic little rituals are driving me berserk. The bottom line is that I have a year left before the Big Five-O. One damned year! When am I going to snap into action?

Monday November 17

Shirley called last night. We chatted briefly. Then, Kevin in Washington called. I was quite surprised. We talked for about an hour. It was certainly nice to chat with him. We primarily discussed the babe situation. However, I am beginning to realize that I am totally disillusioned by it all.

An uneventful day. Many people at the Asylum, students and staff alike, asked me about Shirley. obviously, she was the hottest babe at the lua'u. Shirley and I ate lunch ate Taco Bell. Pseudo-professor Robert joined us. He has really been getting into his bass playing. I have yet to begin steady practice of my new keyboards. I have to purchase a stand for it because the unit is huge. I also discovered that homeboy's B-day is the day after mine. Yet another aspect of our parallel lives. Sheesh! "Dangerous" Sara was in class today. She kept calling me over for help, but I tried to maintain my distance. She did tug at my pants at one point to get my attention. As it turns out, she sent me e-mail yesterday. It was a little strange.

Tuesday November 18

The other night, Kevin and I also discussed the ordeal of living with parents. I am almost firmly convinced that I need to find my own place. As much as I'd like a house, I may have to settle for a condo. I will be financially strapped because I am a single-income "family of one." In any case, I could probably sell the property if I can no longer afford it. I may lose some dough, but that's nothing compared to the amount of dough I would lose if I just rent a place. In addition, I do not want to buy a place to use as bait to find a babe. I'll only end up being taken to the cleaners.

An uneventful day. Several students at the Asylum have been asking about Shirley, since they saw her at the lua'u. It's all kind of funny. Glen was at the gym today. He and I ended up at Jamba Juice afterward. We discussed the topic of buying a house. I am almost certain that I will either end up with a townhouse condo or a house out in Waiana'e. Sheesh!

I practiced a little with my keyboards last night. This is going to be a long process. I have no coordination. And, reading sheet music is going to be really difficult. I have had my Orion telescope listed on the AstroMart boards. I may have a buyer for the optical tube assembly. Many other possessions will soon be divested as well.

Wednesday November 19

Shirley apparently caused quite a furor at the lua'u. Yesterday, several students and staff members (all female) asked me about her. No one can believe that we are just friends. They thought that I was trying to cover up something. Even Kevin's wife asked me about Shirley while we all were at the lua'u. It's all so strange. In all honesty, this has finally made me see the light. The babe situation is essentially over. I'm doomed to be a monk for the rest of my life. I suppose that will give me ample time to learn the keyboards.

Shirley and I ended up at Jamba Juice for lunch. I told her that I may have to buy a house out in Waiana'e. I said that the area would eventually be the "New Hawai'i Kai." She laughed. "Wait until I tell Ramona this," she said. Shirley and I have a pretty interesting friendship, to say the least. "Dangerous" Sara was in class today. She called me over every two minutes as usual. She tugged at my pants again. Later, she grabbed my forearm to get my attention. Sheesh! I also saw Pseudo-professor Robert today. He said that he bought another bass guitar. He has two now. He spent $900 total for both of them. He has become obsessed with bass playing. Shirley also keeps bringing up the "New Beginning" celebration. Apparently, she and baby are planning a party, although I already said that I did not want to celebrate my B-day. Something tells me that I won't have a choice in this matter.

Well, my Orion telescope is being sold piecemeal. The optical tube assembly is being shipped to Australia tomorrow. The equatorial tripod is being picked up tomorrow by a guy who lives in Pearl City. I will list the eyepieces, prism diagonal, and shorty Barlow tomorrow. More of my useless possessions will be sold soon.

Thursday November 20

An uneventful day. I mailed off my telescope today to its new owner in Australia. Later, I got a haircut. Then, I went to the gym. Glen was there. We ended up at Jamba Juice afterward. Pseudo-professor Robert was in the faculty computer room when I returned there. He brought a "Girls of Hawai'i" calendar with him. He showed me the covergirl, who apparently is the daughter of a friend of his. Then, he showed me another babe who is a student in his class. I have no idea why he was showing me these babes. None of them are trying to get "freaky" with him. He also has another jam session this Saturday with his new band. Pseudo-professor Angela will be there. He became quite upset when I referred to her as "baby." Obviously, he still has a thing for her. However, who am I to cast stones?

The guy from Pearl City came by to pick up the equatorial tripod tonight. I am on a roll! Everything must go! Well, I'll spend the rest of the evening with my beloved iBook. My anxieties are starting to kick in again. Lord, have mercy!

Friday November 21

Kevin and I held our usual end-of-the-term potluck at the Asylum. Shirley came by for the festivities as well. There was a lot of good food. On the way back to the Diploma Mill, Shirley told me that her friend David had called. He was asking Shirley about whether she had found someone to hook up with. Shirley told him that she was "getting used to being single." I tried to explain that he was attempting to hook up with her. She really tried hard to believe that he was just a friend. I have learned that real friendships between babes and guys is rare. Someone is always up to no good. It's just a fact of life. I also told Shirley that she could afford the luxury of remaining single because it would take little effort on her part to change that. She did not agree with me. "Dangerous" Sara was a little distant today. I was actually relieved. However, after class, she was wandering around Fort Street Mall while talking on her cell phone. As I walked back to the faculty computer room, she caught up with me. She asked about the best route from the airport to downtown. Apparently, a friend was supposed to meet her there.

I ended up at Kahala Mall later in the evening. That's about all I could come up with to do. On the way home, I stopped off at Foodland to buy a bottle of Corbett Canyon Cabernet Sauvignon. My nerves are completely shot, so I need to soothe them.

Saturday November 22

My anxieties were ramping up last night and, as far as I can tell, it has to do mainly with my upcoming B-day. Age is not just a number. It is real. My life is not ending, but I am reaching a turning point. Clearly, there are unresolved issues. The past haunts me. The future scares me. Hence, the present becomes very nebulous. No matter how hard I try to focus my mind, I find my thoughts becoming more diffuse. My life as a pseudo-professor also taxes my senses. It has become painfully obvious to me that this new generation of young people is completely lost. They have no direction, and most of them are spending a lot of their spare time in a drunken stupor. They have nothing that drives them. They have no passion in life. There seems to be a lot of cynicism and despair as well. I have introduced some of the concepts of the Sharma book to my classes but, as in my case, it will be long uphill climb.

I called the handmaiden yesterday. She and I are supposed to meet sometime next week. I will be discussing all aspects of this real estate nonsense. She will also provide me with the names of few "honest" people in the industry. I am no longer certain whether buying a place is such a good idea. Even Anonder argued against it. I will struggle to pay for the place by myself. However, I am in a quandary. I expect the Ninja Turds to move back within a year. There is no way that moms is going to let them live in a one-bedroom apartment beyond that.

I started off the day with my usual tanning hike up Koko Head. Hanauma Bay has been closed for the last two days because of high surf conditions. If you know anything about Hanauma Bay, you know that the waves are always flat there. Not so today. I took the bus to Ala Moana again. I took a walk through the beach park and ended up at Border's. After I returned home, I went to the gym. Shirley called after dinner. She was on break from work, so she drove to Jamba Juice. That made me really want a smoothie. So, I drove to Kahala Mall. Shirley called again while I was wandering around Barnes & Noble. Her cell phone battery was dying so we did not chat long. She has ordered her custom surfboard. Ramona and Tami are buying it for her as a gift.

Sunday November 23

There are other changes coming about. These are the last two weeks I'll be seeing Shirley regularly at the Diploma Mill. We were fortunate to both have our lunch hour open. It will soon be quite lonely during the week. I suppose this means we will be talking more on the phone. There will never be a replacement for Shirley. Even given her young age, she had been a great friend. We don't always agree, but that's part of a friendship. I often wonder about Shirley's friends Ramona and Tami. Both are in their mid-thirties and are single. They keep very busy, since they each have two jobs. Ramona relies heavily upon Shirley's friendship as well.

My anxiety attacks continue to plague me, and I now realize the deeper issues behind them. Sure, mortality is the cornerstone of all anxiety. That goes without saying. However, there are more immediate issues. Ever since my chat on the phone with Kevin (in Washington), it really became clear to me. Yep, the babe situation is at the root of the whole problem and it is not going away anytime soon. This is the "passion" missing from my life, and it has affected everything else. I can cite the really great times in the early days of my relationship with the handmaiden. I'd like to live that time again with someone new. I have no idea how I managed to survive the last four years of the monk life-style. Even then, I have no idea what I desire in this respect. Why am I attracted to young hotties? Why do I want a relationship aside from da wild thing? What the hell am I doing?

Shirley called just as I was leaving. She had just gotten back from surfing. She thinks that I should still take up surfing. I still may. She said that she was going to the movies with Erin. She would try to stop by later, if she has time. I departed for Ala Moana again on the bus. I ended up at the Ward Center. I stopped off at Sports Authority to check prices on backpacks. I need to buy one soon. Then, I walked past all of the other shops and ended up at Border's. I walked back to Ala Moana and caught the bus to Kahala Mall. I bought a smoothie at Jamba Juice. Naturally, I ended up at Barnes & Noble. This routine may seem stupid to most people, but I am compelled to follow it. I cannot sit at home. I have to be near large groups of people. I have to see actual lifeforms, even though most of them are inconsiderate slobs. For some reason, this exposure helps quell my anxiety attacks. And, it has made me aware that I am allowing certain thoughts to cross my mind, which seem to precipitate the attacks. I should be able to block these thoughts, but it is obvious that I don't want to. Herein lies the problem. The only possible adjunctive cure would be something to keep me busy from Friday night to Sunday afternoon. I am seriously considering applying for a weekend job at Barnes & Noble. Or, I could work somewhere in Waikiki. The weekends are killing me.

I walked to the gym and did my cardio workout. The old guy from Pearl City came by again. He bought the eyepieces and prism diagonal. He also brought some fruit. I gave them to moms. I am spending the rest of the evening with my beloved iBook. I am essentially killing time. The anxiety attacks have returned. I am barely functioning. Now, I am at a loss about what to do.

Monday November 24

I have no morning classes right now. However, I must still report for duty at the Asylum. I spent that time finishing my grading and preparing for the next term. I neglected to mention that I investigated allegations that Lisa, the students services director, had been illicitly involved with Roach. There is no proof, but the circumstantial evidence is astounding. That's too bad. Lisa is hottie. I wouldn't mind hookin' up with her. Incidentally, no one was able to figure out why she broke up with her boyfriend of six years. That was over a year ago. I figured that she did it for Roach. Shirley went home early because she wasn't feeling well. So, I ate lunch at Taco Bell with Pseudo-professor Robert. The parallels between our two lives become even more distinct as I talk more with homeboy. After lunch, I went to the gym. Glen was there and so was my favorite Asian babe. I hardly see her around, but I don't really notice her anymore since she wears that ring. She is still a hottie. I did my cardio workout at the Hawai'i Kai gym. Baby was there, too. She was leaving while I waiting for one of the machines. She probably thinks that I am stalking her. Sheesh!

This is a short work week, so I expect my anxiety attacks to ramp up by Wednesday. I really could use a drink right about now.

Tuesday November 25

Pseudo-professor Ralph called last night. He wanted me to call Shirley to tell her about a program on the radio. She has been working on a presentation for his class that was due today. However, she missed class for some reason. The rest of the day was uneventful. Kevin called while I was at the gym. We chatted about the usual Asylum nonsense. Pseudo-professor Robert is still carrying the "Girls of Hawai'i" calendar with him. We chatted briefly about the babe situation. I am beginning to see myself through him, mainly our desire to hook up with young hotties. It has nothing to do with having a "trophy" babe, at least for me. We are just not attracted to babes in our age group. "We are stuck in time," he said, describing our plight to Professor Valentina. She had just walked in on our conversation. This is probably the first time I've seen how foolish this whole situation has become. As I was walking to the gym, I heard someone call out my name. It was Darryln. We chatted for about 20 minutes. She is thinking of changing her major from nursing to education. Darryln is quite a hottie, by the way.

Wednesday November 26

I had to deal with a lot of nonsense this morning at the Asylum. However, I decided long ago to not take any of it seriously. The new student orientation was uneventful as well. I canceled my classes at the Diploma Mill this afternoon. I had put a notice up yesterday that the class was going to the "Library." That's the new watering hole located where Mango's used to be. Only a handful of students showed up to class.  We discovered that the "Library" was closed because the bartender didn't show up. So, we ended up in a sleazy bar just a block away. My next class had a small handful of people as well. Most of the people from my first class stayed on with me. All of us finally ended up at the "Library." We had a great time. I'm not sure what the Dean is going to think about this. However, I am now a legend in my own mind.

Thanksgiving Day 2003

I neglected to mention that I saw Shirley yesterday, but only for a couple of minutes. I also forgot to mention that Chip and I had a couple of noteworthy chats. He told me that one of the Asylum babes is kind of stalking him. In another breath, he said that he almost had a fling with her. Apparently, Chip and his wife have been separated for eight months. He now lives in town. He also made a few comments about Shirley, insinuating that perhaps something is going on between she and I. That's what quite a few people think. By the way, Lisa (student services director) was looking hot yesterday.

Ernie called me on Tuesday night. He is going through a lot of crap at the Asylum. He is also trying to deal with the passing of his father. He said that his latest family fiasco is that everyone was cut out of the will except for one sister.

On this so-called "Day of Thanks," the words of Pseudo-professor Robert continue to ring in my ears. "If I am still doing this 25 years from now, I might as well kill myself," he told me the other day. Both he and I share many of the same concerns because we live extremely parallel lives. Right now, the only differences are that I have saved some dough (which he continually points out) and that he's on meds. He is also certain that money is the answer to all of his problems, including the babe situation. He told me about a babe student whom he befriended about two years ago. She worked on one of those dinner cruise boats. So, she invited him to go along. She confided in him that some fifty-something guy with a lot of dough wanted her to move in with him. "She was actually contemplating it," he said. Thus, obviously money is the answer. Yet, how close is homeboy to making the kind of dough he needs? And, without the dough, he cannot move forward with his life.

The problem both homeboy and I share is that we did little planning in the past, which makes the future much more precarious. Therefore, we have difficulty focusing just on the present. With my B-day just two days away, I am feeling a lot of anxiety. Homeboy is planning a karaoke B-day celebration for himself. Nonetheless, I must take time to reflect on the past. I have been extremely fortunate to have made it this far. In my younger years, I retained a very cavalier attitude toward life and did what I felt like with reckless abandon. It is only by some miracle that I came out of it unscathed. In fact, I have caught up to where I should be, with the exception of the babe situation. There is, of course, nothing more foolish than seeing two old guys lusting over young hotties. Seeing homeboy pull out the "Girls of Hawai'i" calendar to show everyone the babe student in his class made me see how pathetic we really are. However, unless I put a stop to my own stupidity, this nonsense will keep coming back like a bad sitcom.

It actually has puzzled me about why I am in this situation. For the first time in my life, I have become a viable guy in the scheme of life. I have a decent job that pays well for the 25 hours I work per week. I have saved enough dough to provide for my "family." I am able to buy my own place. I have remained in decent health and keep myself in shape. Yet, I cannot have the one thing that I want. Incidentally, I need to address the issue of my "selfishness," as alleged by a few people. It's hard to tell what I do behind the scenes in my position as an administrator and as faculty. I deal with a lot of people all the time. Although my students are far from being "Special Olympics" material, they are often in need of help. It is surprising how many still come back to me for help, as in the recent case of Darryln. One of my former students, Claudia, is still keeping touch. I helped her with a situation concerning an abusive BoyToy. Sure, I could do more. I just choose not to right now. I have to get my own head straight.

I did my tanning hike up Koko Head. Then, I went to the gym early. Later, I chatted with Shirley. She wanted to know what I was doing for Thanksgiving. I said that my family will have small get-together, then I am going to dinner elsewhere. She asked me why I wasn't telling her where I was going. "I am trying to be aloof," I told her. She laughed, and asked me why I was playing games with her. "I am being aloof," I replied. "I'm trying to create a social dynamic." I finally told her that I was invited to Kevin's family dinner. Naturally, I could only wish that I was going to baby's place.

The Ninja Turds arrived sans my bro while I was at the gym. The whole get-together was dysfunctional. My bro finally arrived at about 5pm. I chatted with him briefly. He was eating by himself as everyone else ate earlier. Sometimes I really feel sorry for moms. Nothing can fix our pathetic little family. I left for Kevin's place at 5:30pm. Actually, I was going to his parent's place. It's pretty much a mansion near Diamond Head. Dinner was good. I was somewhat uncomfortable in such an affluent setting. One of Kevin's cousins was a really down-to-earth guy. We may go out drinking one of these days. All in all, an interesting Thanksgiving.

Friday November 28

I met the handmaiden at The Shack in Kuapa Kai. We ate lunch. I dropped back quite a few Guiness. We talked about some real estate stuff. She gave me the business cards of a few people. We spent about three hours there. It was quite fun. I was a little hammered. Before we parted company, I thanked the handmaiden for being a friend. She was a little teary-eyed. Aside from the fact that I love these nicknames, I should perhaps stop calling her the "handmaiden." I might add that she still looks good for her age. It's kind of hard to believe that we used sleep together, take showers together, and do da wild thing four or five times a day.

I walked to the gym after I returned home. Later, I chatted with Kevin. He gave me his cousin's cell phone number, so I will have a new drinking buddy. After dinner, I drove to Kahala Mall. As I walked around, I talked with Pseudo-professor Robert on the phone. He invited me to his big B-Day bash tomorrow night. Actually, the party is for one of his friends who has the same B-day as him, but they decided to combine efforts. The odd part is that their B-day is not until Sunday. He also invited Shirley and I to his karaoke B-day celebration on Sunday. I also chatted with Shirley. She is not sure if she can make the celebration on Sunday. She also asked me if I had bought anything for myself recently. I said no, with the exception of "one big thing." She asked if I was trying to be aloof. "I'm trying to create a social dynamic," I said.

Ol' Lavahead Day

I had an appointment at the dentist this morning. So, I drove to Kahala Mall. I returned home after my appointment. I attempted to take the bus back to town, but I was stranded at the bus stop when the heavy rains came down. The bus was also one hour late. I ended up at Kahala Mall. I rewarded myself with a smoothie from Jamba Juice. After looking around at the same old stuff, I returned home. Then, I went to the gym to do my usual workout.

Shirley called while I was at the mall. We chatted briefly. After dinner, I drove to Kahala Mall. I ran into Chip at Barnes & Noble. He told me the whole story of what's been going on. Apparently, Chip has gone babe crazy. He has had several "encounters" with different babe students at the Asylum. He also mentioned that he knew a student that I had confided in, so he knew that I was doing the same. I fell from grace once, but that's beside the point. I was quite surprised by what he told me. Yet, what can I say? Earlier, I had called Pseudo-professor Robert to get information about his party. On the way to the party, I received a call from Kevin's cousin, Kirk. He was at some bar in town and invited me to join him. I told him that I had to go to a party first.

The party was interesting. There were mostly young people there. It was basically a college party. There were a lot of babes, but I felt too inadequate to do anything. I actually spent most of my time talking with Caroll on my cell phone. We actually had a nice discussion, and I spent most of the time describing my pathetic situation. There really was no comfort in all of this. The fact of the matter is that there is no end to the babe situation. Homeboy was drinking beer tonight, even at the risk of interactions with his medication. All the while at the party, I kept thinking about what Chip said concerning mackin' on babes. I knew what to do, but I just couldn't do it.

I met Kirk at Emerald City, a Korean bar on Kapi'olani Boulevard. He was hammered. He was not the same guy whom I met the night before. The booze made him aggressive and bold. I could really see through the charade after that. He was not a happy-go-lucky guy like I first thought. Rather, he seemed to be someone harboring a lot of resentment. The booze only accentuated the anger. This is not what I want. It became only too obvious to me that the source of the anger was the babe situation. Kirk is a thirty-something single guy.

I returned home at about 2:15am. Moms was still up, which really torqued my jaw. I popped the cork on the bottle of Corbett Canyon Cabernet Sauvignon that I had bought earlier. All I have is my hand. I am beginning to lose my mind, and nothing can stop this anymore. It is the babe situation. It is also my inability to do anything about my situation. When am I going to realize that it is truly over?

Sunday November 30

I only had three hours of sleep, but I was not delirious. Yesterday was a complete wake-up call for me. Everyone around me has gone fucking berserk. I'm going fucking berserk. We are all on a collision course with oblivion. And, the truly sad part is that it all has to do with the babe situation. Even Chip, who puts on a good front, is losing it. The real problem is that there seems to be no way out for us. We are rapidly approaching critical mass. For me, the countdown to the Big Five-O has officially started. The cheap booze works well to supress the anxiety attacks. However, it's only temporary relief.

By the way, the B-day party last night was in Makiki. The conversation with Chip is still haunting me. Chip is in his late fifties. He said that he can't stop mackin' on babes. He's completely out of control, he added. He is also convinced that I have been perpetrating the same thing. With that, he brought up Shirley again. No matter what I say, Chip will never believe me. So, why else would I be at Barnes & Noble by myself on a Saturday night? Chips also doesn't seem to realize that most of the babes at the Asylum come from a troubled background. They are looking for any meal ticket to get of out of Dodge.

The situation with Kirk is typical of the locals here. They all go to the Korean bars and plunk down a lot of cash. They get great service, and they may also get some good lovin'. Glen often talks about his old days when he hung out at the Korean bars on Mau'i. Mind you, the Korean barmaids are drop-dead gorgeous. However, we're talking about a business transaction, not a hook up. This further exemplifies the pathetic state of affairs around here.

To be continued ... Go to D.21

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