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The Exodus Files
Sunday June 27, 2004
I neglected to mention that I had a chat with Pseudo-professor Franklin the other day. He had heard from Professor Marimi that there was a "surprise" applicant from the mainland for the Visiting Professor position. He seemed a little chagrined. I can't say that I blame him since it is obvious that neither of us will get the position. After a while, one gets used to the political bullshit. That's all I deal with day in and day out. People just love that crap. It's only after someone loses it and perforates all of these fat asses with an Uzi that they finally get a clue. Speaking about fat slobs, I observed that the obese were the ones to go straight for the desserts and sweets yesterday at the Asylum. Out of two big boxes of cookies, I was able to get only one cookie. I really don't care if these fools stuff their bloated faces with that lard-based junk food. I just make sure that I go to the gym and work out harder. In the end, these losers (especially those in management who exact cruelty on hapless employees) will pay the price. Stress, guilt, and obesity will result in serious illnesses for these fools. The faster that happens, the better it is for humankind.
This morning, I noticed an ad in the classifieds. The Asylum is soliciting new faculty. Yet another of my predictions is coming true. The new ownership is planning to replace the original faculty by means of natural attrition (read: coerced resignations). It can then replace the faculty with a fresh crew, mostly part-time personnel. This will cut payroll costs significantly. Believe me, I know that I am as expendable as the rest. The local paper has been running a lot of articles about our robust real estate market here. The Sunday business section was almost entirely devoted to the subject. Of particular note was the article on the rental market. An interesting tidbit stated, "The places where it is hardest to find rentals are Kailua and Kane'ohe because so many people would like to live in a cozy beachside town with cool weather." The housing market is still on a roll. Prices continue to rise, and condos are now the hot ticket. It looks as though I made a good move to buy the townhouse, although I know that I won't be able to keep it for long if I depend on my income sources now. It is my decision to continue to hold the property until the beginning of August. After that, I am almost certain that I will rent the unit out commencing in September. I have no other choice right now. If property values soar to a higher level, then I may try to sell it. I am continuing to divest myself of useless possessions as I stated yesterday. It's just not worth keeping any crap around. In addition, I plan to cut more costs to decrease my negative cash flow.
I embarked on my benign journey to Kane'ohe this morning. It is a tiring journey, mostly because of the cattle-like mentality of the bus riders. I had to open Lou's School of Etiquette at least once today. The minute I arrived at my place, I poured out a glass of wine. I had a few more glasses, but I did not pass out on the floor. I was hammered, yet I managed to collect myself to make the journey back to town. I transferred to a bus that took me to Kahala Mall. I rewarded myself with a Jamba Juice smoothie. Actually, I got it for free because Lori had given me a coupon for a free smoothie. I ended up at Barnes & Noble as usual. I felt a little nauseous for some reason. I may be experiencing other health problems. The extremely sweet smoothie was probably too much for me after the few glasses of wine. I hope that I am not becoming diabetic.
It really dawned upon me at some point today that this is not the life I wanted. It's about as standard a life-style as any, but it is not what I want. I am essentially wasting away the last precious years of my life doing absolutely nothing that I want to do. Well, I'm not really doing much. I should clarify by saying that I am not enjoying the consumerist life-style. No matter what I do, I just cannot avoid it. Being a homeowner is probably the worst incarnation of materialism. Fortunately, I have consciously reversed the manic buying trend at Chez Loser. Yet, the place looks so empty because I have no coffee table and no dining set. One bedroom is completely empty. Well, I could just close the door. Incidentally, the Pier 1 rattan settee is pretty ugly. I know that I must get rid of the Bose Acoustic Wave, but I don't want to. I don't want the Kloss radio because it sucks. Yet, the Kloss radio is all I need. This turmoil, this inner struggle, is at the heart of my despair.
So far, the loner's life has been fine with me. I'm not having fun. It's a benign form of existence. I have not missed doing things with people. In fact, I am surprised that people still ask me to do things. I rarely do anything with people anymore. There are too many complications. It becomes obvious to me why I have never settled down with a babe. Anonder hit the nail on the head when he stated that it was just too much trouble. He's right. That's what this pathetic journey has been all about. My values constantly clash with the material world, yet I persist to remain in the latter. I try to fit in and I try to adjust my life-style to be more like other people, but it doesn't work. I am not like anybody else. I don't belong here. The only thing I can do is drink myself into a stupor to sedate myself into believing that everything will be okay. Everything will never be okay. Perhaps I have lost my faith. I've discussed this ad infinitum along with my ideas about eleventh-hour interventions. My faith has dwindled to such a low point now. I have to restore that faith, or I will self-destruct.
Monday June 28
The stupid kid, son of the old ho' at the House of Lolo, was making all kinds of noise in the carport at 2am. So, I called the cops. I was not able to get to sleep after that, which left me fatigued all day. I put myself back on coffee today, but I am seriously going to limit my consumption to half of a mug per day. I will not be putting any limits on my wine consumption, however. In the aftermath of the Saturday meeting at the Asylum, most people were left dazed and confused. The faculty are the most vulnerable. More crap is being laid upon them, and they may end up making less money as well as losing their medical benefits. In the meantime, people like Kim, the Director of Education, merely give lip service. She serves the god of money just like the new ownership. All the cookies that she stuffed in her face on Saturday will not bring her redemption. I am not really worried about my own fate there because my time is limited. The true wage slaves are the people who are ruled by money. They put aside their ethics, their morality, and their compassion to live in opulence. Yes, they buy all the Ding Dongs and Krispy Kreme doughnuts that they want. Naturally, they all get fat after stuffing their face with lard-based crap. Is it poetic justice to see these fat slobs lying in a hospital because of some fat-related illness? This is natural karma. Payback in the universe is a bitch. I, myself, am in payback mode. Why else would I be suffering from all of this misfortune?
I arranged for the Salvation Army to pick up a whole mess of my useless possessions this Saturday. I am donating close to $1,000 of crap. I forgot to list the Milano halogen desk lamp, so it will not appear on the receipt. Who cares? I'm fine as long as I get rid of that crap. I felt much better when the confirmation came through. I always feel a sense of freedom when I divest myself of any possession. Pseudo-professor Kai and his daughter were in the faculty computer room at the Diploma Mill when I arrived there after the gym. He had a phone interview with someone in China. After he was done, he told me that he would invite me to China, if and when he gets the job there. I am excited about the idea of going to China. If he does indeed secure a teaching job there and he invites me over, then I am going for sure. I ended up waiting at the bus stop for an hour for the express bus. More natural karma, I'm sure. Shirley contacted me by text messaging this afternoon. I found it too humorous. I responded in the same manner. She wants to have lunch sometime, and I believe that she wants to see my townhouse before it gets foreclosed. I am happy that Shirley still finds my friendship worthy of her time. Yes, Shirley is friendly to everyone, but she does not become good friends with just anyone.
In dealing day-to-day with selfish and conniving losers, I have to come to realize that my "crimes" (i.e., writing a journal) pale in comparison. The greed and debauchery that I am privy to witness and often fall victim to is far more grandiose than a few cynical and speculative verses in an obscure Web journal. Although some could say that I have betrayed them, they have certainly never experienced heartache and betrayal as I have. The saddest part is when the motivation is simply money and greed. Covetousness. However, in the material world, that is all there is. Anonder is correct when he asserts that he and I are more spiritual. That's what makes me a loner because I cannot connect with anyone who is entrenched in materialism. It is in the spiritual realm that one learns about humanity. Some may view my writings as a cynical rant on life, but its not. In these words are my observations of the human condition. I am trying to understand the humans whom I come into contact with. I am trying to understand how and why they lost touch with humanity. Therefore, I am alone.
Tuesday June 29
A pleasant day. I enjoyed facilitating my classes at both the Asylum and the Diploma Mill. My lecture was more like a comedy routine. It probably has to do with the e-mail I received from Jay, a former Asylum student. He was in the same graduating class as Vanessa. As a matter of fact, he was reminiscing about the class that a bunch of them were in. They were always fooling around. So, one day I gave lecture on how to make a Burger King Whopper. I told them that, if they keep fooling around, they will need that knowledge. They all laughed, of course. I told them that they needed to get serious or they will end up at Burger King or CompUSA. In his e-mail, Jay wrote that he was now working at CompUSA. He alluded to my prophesy and lamented at how difficult job hunting was. Jay and Vanessa are typical of the students who attend the Asylum. With each passing day, I wonder how these kinds of students will fare under the new plan. I have been very accurate in my predictions. My latest one gives the Asylum about nine months before the new plan completely collapses. The real problem at the Asylum is internal. The people who have worked there and who are still there are the problem. The reputation of the Asylum is also dismally low. The only one positive aspect of the Asylum was the ohana relationship that most faculty had with the students. In the new plan, that will be destroyed and replaced with a mainland approach. The enrollment may go up for a while, but it will plummet quickly. The new ownership wants to instill the "team" concept in all of the students and faculty. It's pure mainland shit. In Hawai'i, it's all about family. Faculty are like aunties and uncles to these kids. I am, as you may know, referred to as "Uncle T." This moniker also carries over to the Diploma Mill. In the new sweatshop scheduling, there will not be time for the old ways. Alienation will be the new malady, which may be the final nail in the coffin for the Asylum.
Since I am now quite good at handling public relations, I am privy to faculty reactions. I have also learned to cross all defensive lines of most of the factions. That give me quite a knowledge base. I already know that the new system of "checks and balances" proposed by the new ownership will fail. The faculty and staff have no choice but to stage the desired results. It is a quiet revolution. I will continue to do my job and do it well. I have no power over my peers. They have been deceived with "bait and switch" tactics for the last two months. Their morale is at an all-time low. Most have already figured out that they will be working more hours for less pay. And, they may lose their health benefits because the rigorous scheduling will not allow them to facilitate enough classes to be considered full time. Running the ad for new faculty in the Sunday classifieds the day after the grueling "hard sell" meeting was a management faux pas. Incidentally, a new position is being created, which was also in the ad. Ernie will have an assistant, but the latter will be required to have more credentials than he does. I was told by an insider that this will circumvent the situation with the accreditation board. It could also be a way to remove Ernie from the picture seamlessly.
Pseudo-professor Glenn called while I was at the Diploma Mill. He wanted to make tentative arrangements for the Art Walk this Friday. Pseudo-professor Bill may be there as well. I managed to get the Milano desk lamp listed for the pick-up this Saturday. I am looking forward to parting with that crap. I neglected to mention that Shirley stated in her text message that her class was canceled, so I take it that she's on vacation for the Summer. I am sure that she's still working at Daiei. She's due to graduate sometime next year. I often wonder what she will do after that. Will she continue to live at home, surf, and work at Daiei indefinitely? Will she hook up with any guy who comes along? Let's hope not. I really worry about her, as I also did with the former friend. I've seen too many babes end up in bad situations merely because their biological clocks were ticking down. I have my own problems, I suppose. That's what I should be concerned about. In the end, it's still a matter of faith. It is the only hope.
Wednesday June 30
Yesterday, I chatted with Mark on the express bus. I have not seen him in a long time. I also neglected to mention that I finally threw out my old pair of Dockers, the ones that were completely frayed. I am still wearing the decrepit shoes that I was going to throw out last year. I plan to get the maximum usage out of everything. I have been pushed down Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs. I do not have the luxury of buying things on a whim.
An uneventful day. One of the Asylum faculty asked Al about the classified ad on Sunday which was soliciting new faculty. Al said that he knew nothing about it. I have been analyzing this situation since this mess started about two months ago. I have tried to give the new ownership the benefit of the doubt, but now I know better. Al has been here for two weeks. He's Sam's proxy, so he has his hand in everything that goes on. The classified ad was a stern warning to the faculty that they will be replaced if they do not tow the company line. I have now shifted my analysis to consider that all actions are intentional. I am also now certain that there has been little investment of capital by the new ownership. They are working off of the existing cash flow of the operation. That's why they continue to cut costs. I am also certain that the purchase of the Asylum is on a contingency basis. That's why the ineffective former president has been retained as the so called "executive director." No one would retain the head of a failing business. There has to be a performance-based criterion which determines the percentage of payments being made. I also suspect that there is an escape clause. If the Asylum fails to recover within a certain period of time, it will be handed back to the seller. I have already predicted that the enrollment will plummet. My guess is that the downward trend will become significant fifteen weeks after the introduction of the ill-fated plan. That's just around V-Day next year. I expect the Asylum to be handed back just before Summer.
I tried the "team" approach on my class at the Asylum today. It was met with a lot of laughter, just as I expected. Then, my students started speaking Pidgin English in an overdone fashion. The latter is usually the response to any haole initiative. The results confirmed my belief that the new ownership's system of "checks and balances" will not work. The rifts between many of the faculty and staff are increasing. There is so little cooperation. Just this alone will cause the new ownership's plan to fail. I spent the latter part of the afternoon at the Diploma Mill. I finished grading exams. I always make time to go to the gym, even though I may not mention it. This has been a fatiguing week. My Panda Express fortune cookie read, "It is best to consult others before taking unusual actions." Are we talking about Costa Rica Cinco?
Thursday July 1
At the Asylum, Wayne, one of the faculty, told me this morning, "Your predictions, although sometimes doom and gloom, are pretty accurate." He was referring to my track record of predicting most of what has been happening for the last two months. This was quite a compliment, because he has been at the Asylum for 23 years. He did not take me seriously before. I spend a lot of my time in small meetings, mostly with faculty. This whole transition process has been very fatiguing. The rest of the day was uneventful. I saw Mark on the express bus this afternoon. He wanted to know what I was going to do with the townhouse. I told him that I will most likely rent it out this September.
I did not change my cell phone plan, although I should have. I had dropped down one rate plan last month. Vanessa called. Her mom sold the house that she bought near Salt Lake. Her mom apparently bought another place in Kaimuki, but the house was very old. So, it has to be torn down and rebuilt, which could take several months. In the meantime, Vanessa is living at her boyfriend's place. Well, it's his parents' place. This is the same guy that she's been with for a while, although the relationship is really dysfunctional. I am not sure why she keeps going back to the clown. She doesn't have anywhere else to go, I suppose. Vanessa is prone to making some very hasty decisions, so I warned to carefully think things out before doing anything foolish. Pseudo-professor Bill called. He wanted to see if the Art Walk was still on for tomorrow. I told him that I would let him know tomorrow. I could be too fatigued to do anything.
Friday July 2
An uneventful day. I spent the morning at the Asylum. I called Pseudo-professor Bill at 12:30pm to tell him that I wasn't going on the Art Walk. Then, I restored my monk haircut. Actually, this time it looks like a real military haircut. Then, I ended up at the faculty computer room at the Diploma Mill. Pseudo-professor Kai was there. He said that he would call me to see if I wanted to hang out with him and his daughter. I went to the gym. I had some time before the express bus, so I walked back to the Diploma Mill. Pseudo-professor Glenn was in the faculty computer room when I arrived. Well, we went to the Indigo Happy Hour and also the Art Walk. We had a great time. I was pretty hammered, as we have come to expect. Tony called. He left a message. He wants to go out for drinks sometime. He is no longer a pseudo-professor. What amazes me is that these people want to hang out with the ol' lavahead. If you listen to the former friend, you would think that I am the scum of the earth. Whassup wi' dat?
Tomorrow is the big day. I will be donating quite a few of my useless possessions. It is an historic moment. The Pier 1 ad was inserted in today's paper. Looks like there's a dining set on sale. There's also a coffee table on sale. What am I going to do? The dining set with two chair will cost about $220 and the coffee table is about $170. I'm not sure what to do. I really don't need the dining set. Well, the sale ends on July 25th, so I have some time.
Some older babe was trying to mack on Pseudo-professor Glenn at one of the galleries. It was kind of humorous. That, of course, brought up the discussion of the babe situation. I told Pseudo-professor Glenn that I am no longer concerned about the latter. However, there were a lot of babes out on the town this evening. This is still an issue, I suppose. I've really got to come to grips with reality. It's over, and that's that. I have too many other things to worry about, like my mortgage.
Saturday July 3
Summer is almost half over, and I have nothing to say for myself. I am at the halfway point before the Big Five-O. Well, actually, I am turning one this year because last year was the "New Beginning." Moms was preparing all kinds of food last night, so I know the Ninja Turds will be visiting. Moms also had a laugh over my latest military haircut. It does look pretty stupid. I have been ruminating about my negative cash flow situation. There's almost nothing I can do unless I divest myself of the townhouse. An article in this morning's paper highlighted the fact that Hawai'i real estate prices will continue to go up despite the interest rate hike. Condo prices have averaged an increase of 12 percent since the beginning of the year. As Lori had said, most of the buyers are now from out of the State. Who else has that kind of dough? Honolulu's housing prices rank fourth highest in the nation. The leading three cities are all in Cali. The negative cash flow situation is another story. I will depend highly on my Salvation Army donations to yield a modest tax deduction. Also, the sale of my six-four and the Bose Acoustic Wave will reduce my worldly possessions to useless furniture and my iBook.
In looking back, I now realize that I have had this plan for several decades. Subliminally, it has been with me for all this time like a silent pact. The beginning of this strategy was mapped out when I was still in high school. I was reading a lot of dissident literature. Those were the days of "anti-establishmentarianism." Sadly, many of the founders of this school of thought had later sold out. Materialism and consumerism have spiraled out of control as was predicted. Social frameworks crumbled as was expected. I watched prophesy turn into reality. I could have bought into the system if I had a "normal" life. Had I married and had kids, I would probably be just like the other married clones. I'd be up to my neck in debt and useless crap. Right now, I am just playing a game with myself. I am making a financial investment (i.e., Chez Loser), and I am trying to experience a little of what the "normal" life is about. Nothing matters because I have no one to answer to. Specifically, I have no babe. So, I can exit the "normal" life without a hitch. The "normal" life has locked me into wage slavery. I now long for my freedom. I don't want to work long hours, even though I have nothing else better to do. This is the final struggle to be detailed in the journal. Much of the recorded stupidity was edited out. The journal really needs to stay intact in order to serve its purpose.
I waited until close to noon for the Salvation Army truck. Nothing. So, I left on the usual benign journey to Chez Loser. At the Ala Moana transfer point, a haole guy asked me if I was waiting for a Windward bus. Then, he started talking to me about his condo in Waikiki. He went on and on. It was a pleasant conversation. He's about 46, so I assumed that he was a single, lonely guy. I've been meeting a lot of guys like him lately, eh? We got on the same bus, but I sat in the back. The bus was really crowded. I was already in a bad way because of having to wait so long for the Salvation Army guys. I finally made it to Chez Loser at 2pm. I vowed not to drink any wine, but that went right out the door. I was hammered in no time. I passed out on the floor. When I came to, it was close to 3:30pm. It was time to leave. I took the bus back to town. I went to the Ross store in town. Some loser and his fat bitch wife could not find any reason to get out of the way when I was walking down the same aisle. I had to open Lou's School of Etiquette. I caught the bus to Kahala Mall. Some rude asshole decided that he was the most important person, so he went ahead of everyone. I boarded the bus and immediately opened Lou's School of Etiquette. I was right behind him, so I shoved him hard. "You're an important guy. Move!" I told him. This was not a good day.
I have decided that I will buy neither a coffee table or a dining set. I will just buy a new rug. The ugly K-Mart rug will be moved to the dining area. I want to buy a nicer rug for the living room. So, I drove over to Ross in Kuapa Kai after dinner. The place was a mess. Merchandise was all over the floor. The Ross in town was just as bad. What kind of animals shop at these places? It's sickening. This is what's really getting to me. Everywhere I go, people are like fucking cattle. They act like animals, so I treat them like animals. Fortunately, the Salvation Army guys left me a receipt. That's the most important aspect of my day. I expect to get a few hundred more dollars back when I file my tax returns next year. Those receipts are the key. It's amazing to see how little in the way of possession I have left. Yet, I need to get rid of more. I've got to sell the Bose Acoustic Wave. I still have to ship the folding metal bookcase. Then, I will sell my six-four. The end of the journey is near, my friends.
Sunday July 4
This is Independence Day. However, I won't be doing anything this year. The day itself has some significance to me. I divested myself of a whole mess of crap yesterday. I am working toward my own independence, as it were. I still have a lot more to get rid of. One must imagine that I have myriad boxes of junk like Robert. No, I actually have very little insofar as physical volume is concerned. I have a lot of little crap, mostly purchased out of boredom. They all have to go! The weather has been unusual for the year. So far, it has rained every day. There have been no days of extreme heat. In fact, it's unusual to see Koko Head, Koko Crater, and surrounding mountains so green this time of year. Surprisingly, it has not been raining any more than usual on the Windward side.
I noticed that condo prices in town have gone up significantly. I can't imagine paying that much to live in a concrete shoebox. Prices in Waikiki are sky high. An article in this morning's paper stated that hotel occupancy rates have gone down. Many tourists are opting to rent luxury condos or have invested in timeshare schemes. That explains why many hotels have made either partial or full conversions to condos. Hawai'i is rapidly becoming the playground of the rich. Many people are buying their second homes here. The locals here in Hawa'i are packing up and moving to Las Vegas en masse. This actually typifies the herd mentality of the locals. This is the key to understanding Hawai'i, something that I had forgotten when I first moved back. When someone offers the answer, "Well, this is Hawai'i," It's not just an excuse. It is the explanation. What else could explain the mass migration of locals to Nevada? One also has to understand the deep gambling urge which afflicts a good percentage of the population. It's the dream of getting rich quick and easy. Thought patterns in Hawai'i permeate the local population with blinding speed. One example is how people park their cars. It is curious to watch almost all of the local population attempt to back in their cars wherever they park, even though they can barely drive. A walk through most "local" neighborhoods will yield that most cars are parked in this fashion. It's a strange and annoying concept, but it does tend to exemplify some of the problems here. This is why I do not believe that the new ownership at the Asylum will succeed. The island culture is the problem, and it stems from the close ohana network. Most families and friends are really tight. It's the primary support system, even if it is totally dysfunctional. We are on a small island, just 40 miles wide by 60 miles long. There is nowhere to go. Even though we are connected electronically, the old thought patterns prevail. I've listened to mainland friends express that this should not make a difference. It does. That's why there are so many problems here. That's why most of the locals are so poor. That's why there are so many mainlanders here. And, that's why there's a huge dichotomy between the two.
I neglected to mention that I had to sign up for .NET Passport in order to access information from the Microsoft site. This has to do with the Asylum's membership. I closed my Passport when I closed my Hotmail account. I did not want to create another one with my personal information, so I registered as "Nick Soapdish." Some of you may remember that The Tick used that name when he was trying to sign in at a hotel incognito. I told this to Robert, the Asylum's network administrator. He had a good laugh.
An unexciting day. I embarked on my usual journey to Chez Loser at 11am. I arrived at Ala Moana about an hour later. I had to go to Foodland before continuing my journey. Along the way, I heard someone call out my name. It was Professor Marv. He has been staying at at the Ala Moana Hotel for a few days. Today, he was checking in at the Pagoda. He's leaving for the mainland on Thursday for two months. He's put everything in storage except for his car. I told him that I could store it for him. He said he had no plans for tonight. I told him to give me a call. I bought a bottle of wine, a deli sandwich, and some air freshener crap. I had to wait at the bus stop for 20 minutes because I missed the bus I wanted to catch. The lines at Foodland were very long. I arrived at Chez Loser at 1:30pm. My 4th of July celebration was pathetic. I ate my delicious deli sandwich and had a few glasses of wine. The K-Mart rug was looking better to me today, so I am not going to buy another rug at Pier 1. I may solve the coffee table dilemma by purchasing the matching rattan ottoman. The whole place has some odd dungy odor. That's why I had to buy the air freshener crap. I should have bought more. If I make the trip to Chez Loser tomorrow, I will buy a whole mess of those things. I did not pass out on the floor today, most likely because I ate that big sandwich. I made it back to Ala Moana at 3:20pm. Traffic was terrible. Ala Moana was packed with people.
I walked around for a while. I stopped in the Apple store and a few other places. I also listened to a local band playing at the Center Stage. All of Ala Moana was packed with people, even when I left at 5pm. Everyone was staying for the big fireworks show tonight. Remember that I was at Ala Moana for the 4th of July last year. I ended up at the Mai Tai Bar. Well, I had to delete all of that, so you won't find it in the journal anymore. It was a lot of fun, though. Caroll called. We played phone tag for a while. I finally chatted with her briefly. She's now working at another car dealership. So far, it seems to be panning out. Shirley sent a text message. It read, "What up, boo? Happy 4th of July! Hope you're doing well. As for me, I've been sick for over a week. K, Laters Boo!" I'll send her a reply later tonight. I will be doing nothing this evening. Frankly, I like it this way. I'll probably listen to music on my Bose Acoustic Wave. Then, I'll lapse into a coma. Sheesh!
Monday July 5
I walked down to the gym at Koko Marina this morning. The place was completely packed with people. I did not want to wait around, so I did as much of my weight workout as possible. There were a lot of hotties there, by the way. I was surprised. All of the cardio machines were taken, so I left. I bought a whole mess of air freshener crap at Foodland. I made the benign journey to Chez Loser again. Les was on the bus when I transferred at Ala Moana. He is no longer a pseudo-professor. He spent nine months unemployed. Then, he worked for AT&T as a telemarketing agent. He was "terminated" for not meeting his quota. Now, he is unemployed again. He cut his hair short, so I did not recognize him at first. He looked better than the last time I had seen him. Upon arrival at Chez Loser, I placed the air freshener crap in every room. I celebrated by finishing off what was left in the open bottle of wine. Naturally, I passed out on the floor. When I came to, I realized that I had leave. I got off at the Ward Center to go to Pier 1. Yes, it's a sickness! The place was packed with people. There's a big sale going on. Where are people coming up with the dough to buy this stuff? I had only one small item to purchase, but I did spend considerable time looking around. All I have left to purchase is the Pier 1 floor lamp. I walked back to Ala Moana and looked around. Then, I took the bus back to Hawai'i Kai.
I am realizing now the reason why I cannot bring myself to buy any furniture. After I was homeless for that one Summer several years ago, I never really unpacked. I had leased apartments after that, but I never took my clothes out of the suitcase. Even after I did the laundry, I always put it back in the suitcase. That's the way it was when I was at the Roach Motel as well. It was fully furnished, but I never put anything in the dresser. I also had only one plate, one fork, and one spoon. The broken French Press was also around. I did not buy any bedding. Instead, I used a cheap sleeping bag that I bought at K-Mart. When I moved back to Hawai'i, I had to live in the former "warehouse" at moms' place. So, I never unpacked my stuff. It all sits in a plastic laundry basket. It makes no sense to own furniture in Hawai'i anyway. If it's cheap and made out of pressboard, then it falls apart because of the humidity. And, all furniture is a haven for roaches.
Tuesday July 6
By the way, Les is living at home with his parents. He's fifty years old. This is actually the reference standard for single, local guys who are losers. I, of course, fall into this category. This also falls in line with my short dissertation the other day concerning locals. I have been noticing this trend for a while. I have a distance to walk when I get off the bus in Kane'ohe. As I walk past the houses, I can tell which ones are purely locals. There are at least four cars parked in the garage, driveway and in the yard, if not more. The houses normally has had one or two physical additions made, usually not architecturally appealing. The saddest implication is that two or more generations live in the same house. This is by far the "norm" in Hawai'i. The guys, usually the single losers, tend to stay on forever. Babes will live with their parents if they are single, or if they get divorced. It's actually easy to see why a lot of local guys are losers. There's just no incentive to go beyond the bare minimum when one lives safely at home. Most of the guys in this position have shitty jobs. They don't save money. All earned income is spent on the car (read: riceboy) or something stupid. As far as I could tell, Les was bringing home one of those lamp-baked chickens from Foodland. Remember when I used to buy those back in Convalescent City? Says it all, doesn't it?
An uneventful day. I chatted with the faculty at the Asylum. I am not even sure if anyone gets it yet. I am running my classes as they all will run starting in September. I have stepped up the regimen. I gave an exam this morning. My class did so poorly. It was pathetic. This is the demographic of the Asylum's student body. They read and write at a 6th grade level. They have no desire to learn much even though they constantly give lip service about it. The burden to produce results will shift entirely upon the faculty. There is no support system. However, nothing is going to change. If anything, most of the students will drop out unless the classes are "dumbed down" considerably or they are allowed to pass. That's the way it was in the shitty high schools they attended. I am committed to raising the bar in the the classroom, but I am afraid that I already know the results. I suspect that we are going to have an unofficial faculty meeting sometime in which no administrators are present. We have to develop a strategy. Wayne, one of the faculty, is making his own predictions. He believes that the Asylum's enrollment will decline drastically by the end of September. That's a far harsher prediction than mine. I am predicting a downward trend of significance in the middle of February. Wayne also does not believe that the sale had an escape clause. He wants to organize an employee buyout. That's not going to work because none of them have any money. In addition, the employees are the major problem.
I ran into Professor Gordo at the Diploma Mill. He said that he was in Mexico recently. He happened to stop by the University of San Diego. He wants to try for a position there. The pay is apparently much better than anything in Hawai'i. As he and I were chatting, my former student Alana said hello as she walked by. Alana held the Miss Teen title a couple of years ago. She's still a hottie. Remember that I was the only one who would write her a reference letter so she could enter one of the pageants. Oh, and I forgot to mention that the townhouse unit across from Chez Loser must have been sold. The owners were in the process of moving out.
The townhouse has other implications for me. My main mortgage is for 30 years. It will outlive me, if I go by family history. Pops was one month short of turning 78 years old before he passed on. If that is the case, I may have only 28 years left on this planet. That's not a long time. My mortgage is a constant reminder of the time remaining. I don't plan to keep the place much longer than five to seven years, if I can maintain the payments. However, I am now keenly aware that I cannot waste too much more time in wage slavery or paying for things that I don't need. There's just too little time left.
Wednesday July 7
With less than 30 years left for me, I should just sell the Bose Acoustic Wave and buy the fucking Pier 1 lamp already. Sheesh! I am wasting my life away with useless and idiotic deliberations. The other day, I noticed that some guy had a "For Sale" sign on a newer model of my six-four in the Koko Marina parking lot. It was newer by three years. He was asking $3,500 for a rust bucket. I can expect at least that much for my six-four since mine is in better shape. Incidentally, the Bose Acoustic Waves are selling like hotcakes on eBay. I may have picked the right time to divest everything.
An uneventful day. I had more discussions with the faculty at the Asylum. Almost no one has read the volumes of procedures that Al had passed out. No one even cares. More of the faculty are speaking in Pidgin English, which I assume is deliberate. This whole situation is one big pathetic comedy. We're on a collision course with hell. What really gets to me is how bamboozled Sam and Al must be. What else can explain the chain of stupidity? I continue to do my job. I have not heard anything from the Diploma Mill, so that's a wash. I have also not heard anything from Chaminade. Apparently, I am stuck in a shitty situation that I had better learn quick to accept. This has been a humbling experience. I have learned that I am a true loser with nowhere to go. I am fortunate to even have a job, so I should be grateful for that. Perhaps it's time for me to read the Sharma book again. Or, I should read, "Man's Search for Meaning," by Viktor Frankl again. I have been taking everything for granted lately. I have lost my humility. And, I am not seeing things as they should be. I could easily blame it all on the cynical, helpless fools whom I am constantly surrounded by. However, I am the director of my life. I am the one who let it all go to hell. As the old adage goes, "Shit happens." Yes, it does, unless one takes control of the situation.
Lori was on the express bus this morning, but it was too crowded in the back. So, she sat up in the front of the bus. I did not get a chance to chat with her. She has been in New York for a week. Last night, I checked on the disposition of the printer that I shipped last month. It arrived in Cali on July 3rd. So far, no delivery information. All I can think about is the Pier 1 lamp.
Thursday July 8
The printer apparently was delivered to its destination at noon yesterday. All I have left to ship is the folding metal bookcase. Have you been reading the McClendon Report? I have a feeling that there's going to be some strange activity in the financial markets. I am a little worried. World events are cataclysmic at best. If I didn't know better, I'd say that we're at the front door to Armageddon.
An uneventful day. Word is now circulating at the Asylum about an employee buyout plan. I was privy to such a discussion today. If the enrollment goes down as predicted, I would assume that the new ownership will either attempt to sell the place or shut it down. Obviously, the former is a better option. With two years of dismal financial performance, the place is not worth much. However, with the proper team in place, it could easily turn around. In fact, I had already given the administration most of the details when I submitted my infamous "Diploma Mill Plan" document. I have already identified the major problem — the reputation of the place is really bad. Word-of-mouth has spread to all of the communities of our primary student demographics. No amount of advertising and marketing will change this. The cause is quite pathetic. It is the inefficient internal dynamics of the organization. In other words, the staffing is composed of incompetent losers. The new ownership's plan to use a more mainland approach will only exacerbate the situation. "Should we just let the place die?" asked one faculty member. I said that I would continue to implement all of the new mandated procedures. I am not in a position to make any other decision. I do not blame the faculty. Most of the dirty work is being delegated to them, as well as the tremendous responsibility of training students who are close to illiterate. In addition, the new ownership is scheming to reduce all of them to part time status. They will lose a chunk of income and also their medical benefits.
Pseudo-professor Kai has invited me to his place tomorrow night for dinner. I would like to be there, but that depends on how tired I am. Right now, I am completely exhausted. Chaminade has offered me two classes, but I will most likely decline. I will not make enough dough to pay the mortgage. I will have to continue to work at the Asylum, much to my chagrin. I will see if there is a night or weekend class that I could facilitate. I don't want to burn any bridges. And, I can always use more income. I am prepared to make a three-year commitment to overwork, if necessary. I need to pay down my debts. With less than 30 years left for me, I don't want to slave away in the salt mines much longer than that. In reading a variety of articles, I am finding that I am not in any worse shape than many of the other "baby boomers." The fortune in my Panda Express fortune cookie read, "You will be singled out for promotion." Baha! Ha! Ha! Haaaa! By whom? Oh brother.
Friday July 9
Shirley called last night and left a message. She has just gotten over the mysterious illness. She wants to get together for lunch next week. I have not called her back. However, lunch during the week may be impossible because Sam and Al are due back at the Asylum on Monday.
An uneventful day. I was not able to get much done because there was a virus infestation in all of the computers at the Asylum. My sources tell me that Ernie got a pay raise. He is also the apple of Sam's eye, mainly because the medical office program is what is basically keeping the place afloat. There seems to a lot of crap floating around about Ernie. Bill, a faculty member, said that Ernie told him that he is being called to serve at the Vatican. He also has been telling people about his numerous job offers which, oddly, he never accepts. "Next, he'll tell us he got an offer from Walter Reed," Bill said. We both burst out laughing. Vivian, the human resources person, mentioned that the truth finally came out concerning Ernie's only medical-related degree. As you may recall, he was a student at the medical assisting school that the former friend once taught at. That's how I found about about the fraud. Why this pathetic tale about Ernie keeps going on and on is yet another reason why the Asylum is doomed. Vivian also mentioned that some anonymous person sent a press release about Ernie to one of the local papers. Who else but Ernie himself would submit somthing like that? Vivian also said that Bug and Roach attended the farewell party for Scot, the registrar. Roach has apparently sprouted a lot of gray hair. Maybe he'll have a stroke soon. "He just walks in here like he owns the place," she said. Obviously, Roach is gloating because he knows the Asylum is in deep shit.
I caught the first express bus to Hawai'i Kai after I finished my workout at the gym. I did not even stop by the Diploma Mill. So, I did not go to Pseudo-professor Kai's place for dinner. Even though I was exhausted, I did my yardboy chores. By the way, that's why I did not purchase a house. I really do not like doing yardwork or home maintenance. And. as long as moms is around, I am going to have to perform those chores. I'll probably just vegetate for the rest of the evening.
Saturday July 10
"We had to eat Spam for dinner last night," Kevin told me yesterday. "And, I had to eat Spam for breakfast." He also said that he and his wife had to work all afternoon on Wednesday at his parents' house. They cleaned the place for $150 cash. I am not sure why he keeps telling me these pathetic stories. After all, it was just a few months ago that he told me that he had over $60,000 in investments. He also mentioned that his wife makes more than he does in a year, so I estimated that they make over $60,000 annually. He once told me that he wanted to have kids, but his time is running out. Yet, he puts a huge percentage of money in his IRA and 401(k) accounts. He has also invested in life insurance. His wife told me that he controls all of the finances, including the money she earns. Why doesn't he buy a place and start a family? Instead, he keeps telling everyone these pathetic stories. He has the Asylum administration bamboozled and feeling sorry for him. Every month, he claims that he cannot make the rent. Money corrupts or, rather, it's the love of money. I do not make much dough, but I am paying my mortgage. I am also giving some money to moms each month to help out. Lori and I were discussing some of these issues yesterday morning. However, Lori is in a good position herself. She works part-time for her husband. Essentially, her husband is carrying the torch. This is the aspect of sociaety that I want to escape. This is what sickens me so much that I don't really care to own anything. In chatting with many locals, I have really come to understand the true nature of greed. So many of them are waiting to inherit their parents' homes. Then, I have heard the horror stories of heated battles over the parents' estates.
I brought the folding metal bookshelf to the local packaging supply shop. I am having a custom box made for it. The guy at the shop treats me well. He is making sure that the box doesn't exceed the oversize limit for shipping by Parcel Post. I will pick it up on Tuesday and should have it shipped on Saturday. The benign journey to Chez Loser was made a little more exciting when the bus had some kind of mechanical trouble up on the Pali Highway. We had to wait for the next bus. Naturally, when I arrived at mt destination, I had to consume a few glasses of wine. I was pressed for time, so I couldn't pass out on the floor. I stopped off at Pier 1 on the way back. There's an Asian hottie who works there. She asked me if I needed any assistance while I was meandering around. I was so taken aback by what a babe she was that I forgot about the lamp. I wanted to know if there were any of the Mica Drum floor lamp model in stock. I know what you're thinking, but that's not the case. It suddenly dawned upon me about how time has come and gone for me, just as it has for my brethren. My days are numbered, and I have already started the countdown. I am making preparations for my final journey when I depart this planet. That's why I am cleaning house and divesting myself of everything. As the old saying goes, "You can't take it with you."
As I reviewed my credit card bill, I noticed a discrepency with the charge from Murphy's. The waitress apparently took it upon herself to modify the amount of tip that I included. This will be the last time that I patronize that dump. The lesson to be learned is to pay in cash or not spend any money at all. Greed is such an ugly disease. It brings out the worse in people.
To be continued ... Go to E.04
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