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Glass Menagerie
End of Days

Thursday April 4, 2002

Once again, Shirley and I ended talking about everything under the sun. She mentioned that April 1st was day that she had hooked up with her old boyfriend. So, the breakup must still be a sore spot with her. We walked over to Paradise Café to buy some muffins and cookies for lunch. We have been taking turns buying lunch. Today was my turn. The "Meaning of Life" e-mail discussion group has been lively for the past two days. Shirley is also on the list but only as a "lurker." Perhaps she will gain some insight on how the "old folks" think. Even though Shirley knows my age, she constantly refers to people who are even just a few years her senior as "old." I always tell her, "What are you talking about? They're just kids."

I have registered with PayPal, so I am apparently getting ready to put a few items up for sale on eBay. I have not contacted the tax office yet. I must obtain copies of my tax returns for the last two years before I can file my amended returns. Regardless, I plan to reach my mid-year financial goal by the end of May.

Friday April 5

I have set up the "Meaning of Life" discussion group on a free version of Listserv. Not everyone has migrated to it yet, but it is now fully operational. This will certainly accommodate any expansion in membership. Shirley and I ate lunch, leftovers courtesy an administrative meeting at the Asylum. More than a few people are starting to give us suspicious looks. I warned Shirley to be prepared for a possible witch hunt. Obviously, there is nothing going on. I am merely a friend. Nothing more. Nothing less. There is no attraction on either side. We just like to hang out and talk story.

I was extremely fatigued today. This has been a long week. My mind has turned to mush. I could hardly wait to exit the salt mines. The first thing I did when I returned home was to set up my beloved Bose Acoustic Wave. I am listening to the psychotic classical pieces on public radio. Moms is preparing all kinds of food again, so I know that there is a possibility the Ninja Turds will visit. Most likely, moms will personally deliver the food to them.

I am gradually returning to all of my original objectives. I am committed to the five-year financial plan. However, I am going to seriously re-evaluate the situation after that. I can't just stop working, but I can reduce my hours. One can never be emancipated from wage slavery. I am also reviewing my draft plan of becoming homeless for a few years. I will provide details as they come up. Well, I'll spend the rest of the evening with my beloved iBook. As always, I'm livin' large in a small way.

Saturday April 6

Moms spent all morning cooking food on the decrepit hibachi and the equally decrepit kamado. All of the windows must be shut to keep the smoke from coming in. Thus, I was sweating from the extreme heat. Naturally, moms also decided to clean the kitchen floor with a mixture of chemicals including chlorine bleach, so I had to take refuge in my room. Later, moms delivered the food to the Ninja Turds. Moms always cooks some fresh salmon, special for the dolt file clerk. Moms and my moronic bro pronounce the word "salmon" as "sal-men." Where did they come up with this strange pronunciation? From the dolt file clerk, of course! That's the influence the sleazy bitch has over this dysfunctional family.

Shirley called this morning with a question about a project that she is working on for me. We talked briefly. I spent the rest of the day lapsing in and out of a coma. What a waste. This put me in a bad way. I am becoming more intolerant of the situation with my so-called family. Later, as I was doing some minor yardboy chores, I noticed that the plant (actually a cactus) that the handmaiden had given moms was dying. I told moms that the cactus either needs to be in a shady, dry area or in the house. "Just let it die," moms told me. Why even bother accepting the gift from the handmaiden then? I moved the cactus to a shady area in the carport. This is the kind of crap that is making me lose my patience with everything. The sheer stupidity is beyond comprehension.

I completed my State tax return, but I won't mail it in until the deadline. I have got to snap into action. I have to list a few things on eBay, and I must file my amended tax returns. Whenever something take more than a simple step to accomplish, I always end up dragging my feet. Little wonder why I am a perennial loser.

Sunday April 7

I suffered from chronic fatigue yesterday. I felt better today. I have registered on eBay, so I should be listing a few items during the week. I'll probably start off by listing my digital camera, the expensive case for my Bose Acoustic Wave, and a few hurdy-gurdy DVDs. I may also list my Nova Spirit. Then, I am also going to close another credit card account. I can no longer deny that my greatest pleasure comes from divesting my material possessions.

I am also contemplating the sale of my beloved six-four. I won't get much, maybe about $5,000 if I am fortunate. However, I will save a lot of dough when it comes to yearly fixed costs. In retrospect, I should have tried to sell my six-four before I moved back to Hawai'i. In life, we have two choices. We can accept that material possessions make us happy, and also accept the initial and continuing costs to keep those possessions. Or, we can choose the ascetic's path. In both cases, there is some perception of freedom. However, only the latter case insures a lesser dependency on wage slavery.

I went to the gym this afternoon and did my usual Sunday workout. The gym was not crowded, so I had an enjoyable time. Vanessa called and left a message. I called her back after dinner. Vanessa is stressing out because she has not obtained an internship yet. Even worse, she is graduating soon, and she has no idea what she will be doing after that. We didn't chat for very long. I want to relax before I return to the salt mines. I'll be listening to Hearts of Space this evening. I don't want to think about anything else.

Monday April 8

An uneventful day at best. Thank goodness. I was not in the mood for any foolishness. Shirley seems to be slipping back into the local ways again. She wants to continue on at the Diploma Mill, but I wonder how far that will go. The "Meaning of Life" Listserv is still waiting for Pseudo-professors Dorothy and John to sign up. It is very frustrating to try to organize people. They constantly need to be led by the hand.

Moms is worried that Aunty Faye may not have much time left. My aunt is back in the hospital. I'm not sure why, but I have had very little to discuss in the last month. I have only been chronicling the mundane events of my daily routine. I have seemingly returned to a very passive, non-committal state. In some respects, I have ceased to exist. Listening to the psychotic classical pieces on public radio on my beloved Bose Acoustic Wave now appears to be my only derivation of pleasure. This pleasure is not euphoric. It simply is calm and soothing. I'm not even affected by babes either. Perhaps I am finally realizing that I am on the downhill slide. I might as well enjoy the ride, for what it's worth.

Tuesday April 9

The chronic fatigue has already set in again. The only time that I wasn't in a coma was when I observed that babe Deena sitting at one of the computers in the Asylum's library. What a hottie! I cannot even begin to describe the level of debauchery that went through my mind. All I could think about was da wild thing. The rest of the day was a blur. Nothing significant happened, which could be either good or bad. I have had little desire to write any of my thoughts in the journal. My guess is that I have discussed similar thoughts at one time or another already.

I should really be at peace with myself since nothing in particular is disturbing me. Well, the fact that I cannot do da wild thing with Deena is somewhat perturbing, I'll admit. However, many of my other recent concerns have dissipated. I have become apathetic. The apathy has given birth to lethargy. It's a vicious cycle. What is even more tiring is that I am around a lot of young people like Shirley, who are wasting precious time. I already know where most of them will end up. Why do I even bother? There is absolutely nothing that makes sense in this life except extreme greed and stupidity. I am also fatigued because I have been fretting over chump change. All of my earnings can be considered chump change. However, the $340 that I overpaid in taxes and the pennies that I will amass upon selling a few useless items on eBay are gnawing at my senses. I should just give that damned crap away. The real problem is that I should have never bought that crap in the first place.

Perhaps the real problem is that my mind is overloaded. The circuits are ready to blow. There's too much clutter around me. Cell phones are putting me on the verge of senseless violence. Idiots driving around just to create traffic are bringing me closer to the edge. And, why can't I stop thinking about doin' da wild thing with Deena? Sheesh!

Wednesday April 10

When I put the banalities of my life aside, I realize that there is something even more serious afoot. I refrained from writing about serious issues in the journal and from publicly discussing those same issues when I received a lot of criticism from my peers. I have watched as much of what I have researched had, in fact, come true. These days, as I ponder the meaning of life, I cannot help but wretch in nausea as I read the real accounts of what is happening halfway around the world. Human history should preclude the escalation of senseless violence and genocide. However, the opposite has occurred. It would be easy to dismiss all of that as the acts of barbaric and uncivilized animals, as the prevailing stereotypes portray. However, that is not the case. The fanatic (read: religious fundamentalist) despots here and abroad are all attempting to toy with fate and force the hand of the Almighty to strike. In their Thorazine-saturated minds, they envision sitting next to the throne of the [true] God. The Thorazine has apparently skewed their readings of the prophesy. Yes, they are part of the prophesy. However, they are the ones who will bring down the fire and brimstone of destruction — the dreaded Armageddon — through their own foolish acts. As each of the souls who are merely regarded as "collateral damage" returns to the [true] God, know that His wrath is being fueled.

I, for one, have thought of engaging in constant prayer to plead with the Almighty to bring justice to the lost tribes, even though it would certainly bring about my own demise. Yet, who am I? I am merely a lowly, sinful monk. I have not redeemed myself, yet I realize that the world is totally out of control. In our own safe havens, we discover that we have little peace of mind. In our own civilizations, we have become haughty and prone to violence, only to eagerly inflict pain upon others. We have been advancing rapidly toward total world anarchy and given rise to the true definition of "living hell." Yet, the common moron has no idea why this has happened. This is the prophesy straight out of the Good Book. It is happening today. You and I are watching the [rectums] who will force the hand of the Almighty.

Thursday April 11

This morning, I talked with Mia, a former student of mine at the Asylum. I had not seen her in a while. She said that she wanted to ask me a question. She paused. "Are you really a monk?" I assured her that I was. However, the conversation went off on an unexpected route. With tears in her eyes, she described the breakdown of her marriage. The unpleasant turn of events occurred during Spring Break. She had attempted to end it all with an overdose of sleeping pills, but somehow ended up in a hospital and was spared her demise. A case straight out of Frankl's book. "You must not cut short your purpose for living," I said. I made a feeble attempt to apply the principles of Logotherapy, but my heart wasn't in it. Let me explain.

I have been reading about the unfolding drama in a land far away, actually a part of the "Promised Land." A group of common citizens have entered the fray under the auspices of the International Solidarity Movement (ISM). They are "peace" activists who are now serving as human shields to protect a civilian population that is being brutalized. In his book, Frankl discusses that meaning can be found in suffering and in death — a specific cause that an individual is willing to put his or her life on the line for. I have never had such a cause. As I read the continuing accounts of the people who are in the war zone, I had to wonder why I was not amongst them. In a cynical world, it is surprising to see ordinary people who are willing to risk their lives for people they do not know. This is highest form of unconditional love. I continued to ponder why I have not joined the ranks of the ISM. Is it cowardice? Apathy? Or, perhaps I am too afraid of losing my job and its associated income, which supports a lifestyle that, in turn, contributes to my complacence. It takes true conviction to put one's life on the line for a belief or a cause — the only life each of us has. A stray bullet could end that life and the dreams of a pleasant future. All that just so someone else can live, maybe only for a few hours longer. I may not understand it fully because I am not there. Those who survive the ordeal will probably have a totally new outlook on life and a real understanding of humanity.

I walk about the streets of Honolulu with no real concern for my safety. I am only accosted by the ignorant and inconsiderate people whom I frequently encounter. I listen to people complain and whine about how things are not going their way. I listen to people who tell me their woeful tales and the misery they go through — broken relationships, car troubles, computer problems, lack of money to buy fine things, etc. — and I myself lose my zeal for life. It is pure vanity. Their only concern is about themselves, what they own, what they want, what they can't have and what they will do to get it. Purely selfish. "Woe is me!" is what they are telling me, yet they do not know the meaning of the the word "woe" in the slightest of terms.

Finally, I received e-mail from Tom, who wrote:

I cannot help but think of the direct relation of war to money. As you have mentioned before in previous entries, the main issue is money. The Thorazine-induced [rectums] are fighting for more money, oil, and/or land. The introduction of "fighting for God's will" is their way to justify their actions. This "cause" also allows them to easily recruit minions to fight for god. The [rectums] would find it hard to send thousands of people to fight to make them richer so they make their battles "religious wars." Proving yet again that greed is still the root of all evil. When making your comparisons to prophesy keep in mind those references to greed and evil in the end of days. Alas the turmoil of the middle-east has churned for centuries and we have managed to keep our soldiers out of it ..., until now. Perhaps we should look at this situation more carefully as a nation and see that this struggle for money is far from over. We must consider the amount of money we have been pumping over there to fuel this war. This is a major factor for global dynamics. If we stop sending money then we will quickly be persecuted by those nations and attacked by the weapons we provided them. If they stop these wars then we will stop sending money to support their economies. For these rulers war is their all enduring cash-crop. I agree that these bone-heads are skewing the words of prophecy, but I feel they realize which side there are really on. I would not be naïve enough to think that the sinister kahuna would keep God sacred and not use his name to recruit minions to fight for his cause. Just imagine the response Satan would get if he revealed his identity before recruiting day. The handful of people that would show would not have the motivation to march to their death knowing their fate is full of fire and brimstone.

Once again you have given me food for thought, and it has given me a bad case of heart-burn.

As I mentioned a while back, Frankl states that there are only two "races" of humans — the "race" of the decent man and the "race" of the indecent man. We tend to find that those who aspire to lead are normally from the latter group. It is the greed for wealth and power that provides the incentive for these individuals. And, they always use the same tools of brutality and oppression to bring the minions into submission.

Friday April 12

I am at home listening to the psychotic classical pieces on public radio courtesy my beloved Bose Acoustic Wave. I am fatigued after stuffing my face at the Asylum's faculty gathering at Murphy's. I also spent time prodding Phillip, the "Technology Curriculum Coordinator," about establishing some kind of interim policy for all computer classes. Too many students are on the verge of flunking my classes. Should I let them fall through the cracks and pass? The lively debate included Mike and Kevin but there was no consensus. "We have to look at the business side as well as the academic side," Phillip told me. The message might be clearer than I think. Shirley has not been around much. I suppose that my discussions have become more irritating than anything else. I am not concerned. I am a monk.

I have yet to list anything on eBay. Once again, I am dragging my feet. Not much seems to matter. The current world affairs are taking a toll on my sanity. I fear the day that the wrath of the [true] God is unleashed, just because of the myriad morons who can't seem to get a grip on reality. I am also trying to divert my attention to an almost truly metaphysical topic. Yes, I am trying to understand the concept of the existence of the [true] God, an entity that is only bound by eternity. How could each of us become living, independent souls separate from this entity? It is a mind-boggling task. I only fear that I will drive myself insane before I can find an answer.

Saturday April 13

I lapsed in and out of a coma for most of the day. Even though I am wasting my life away, I do not seem to care. I was quite relaxed and at peace with myself for once. Moms was not feeling well and spent almost all day sleeping. I went to the gym later in the afternoon. I had a pleasant workout. I've been walking to and from the gym, and I notice that I am usually the sole pedestrian during my journey.

I found an interesting article by Ernest Partridge. He described the demise of political institutions because of the consumerist model of citizenship, although I believe that his definition applies equally to the demise of society in general. Here is an excerpt:

The model consumer is the perfect egoist — "economic man." He sees the world through "the mind's I" and is motivated by the desire to "maximize preference satisfaction" (to use the economists' jargon). "Values" are interpreted as "prices" — willingness to pay — and thus moral value (i.e., virtue and justice) is "factored out." Those with something to sell — be it a product, a service or a candidate — address the consumer with any device found to be effective: imagery, slogans, deception, fallacy, "spin," and even slander and outright lies, if one can get away with it. If need be, these devices include "junk science," as when the tobacco industry sets up "research institutes" to "prove" that smoking is not harmful, or when the fossil fuel industry concocts "scientific reports" to "prove" that global warming is a "myth."

In contrast, the ideal citizen takes a "moral point of view," by perceiving himself or herself as one equal member among many engaged in cooperative activity for mutual advantage, i.e. a "community." The citizen, as a moral agent, acts not only from personal desire, but also from abstract principle, through which the citizen is enabled to recognize rights and responsibilities in oneself and in others, and just laws and political institutions in society. The moral point of view enables one to recognize excellence in individuals ("virtues") and in societies ("justice"). As we will elaborate below, these "moral values" are independent of economic values ("prices"). In political debate, the ideal citizen (like an "ideal" judge or juror) is unmoved by devious salesmanship and is persuaded by "the better case" — the clearer presentation of facts, the greater weight of evidence, and by the more coherent and consistent argument.

To the oligarchs, the ideal "citizen" (better, "resident") is a worker who produces wealth efficiently, consumes and wastes thoughtlessly and lavishly, and willingly turns over the product of his labor to the oligarchs. In addition, this ideal resident, while well-trained so as to increase productivity, will not be well-educated to think critically or creatively, for original and dissenting ideas may upset the efficiency of the marketplace. Instead, this individual will obediently acquire the tastes, political loyalties and consumer preferences as dictated by the oligarchs, and will not be distracted from his or her function as an ideal consumer by troublesome political ideals. These individuals in Marketplace America are not "created equal," rather they are valued in proportion to their wealth and, by extension, enjoy political power in proportion to their capacity to finance politicians.

Well, I am going to continue my relaxation mode this evening with my beloved iBook. This is the life of a monk. I have to enjoy it while I can. Once the wrath of the Almighty is unleashed, I doubt that I'll be getting any rest. Sheesh!

Sunday April 14

Another relaxing, uneventful day. As usual, I walked to the gym, did my usual mediocre workout, and walked back. I lapsed in and out of a coma for most of the day. During my more sentient moments, I pondered my immediate strategy to divest myself of my marginal possessions. I plan to list that junk on eBay within the next two weeks. Everything must go.

My beloved Palm IIIe is giving me grief. If I don't turn it on at least once a day, it loses the current date. I suppose that it needs to be "synchronized." I can't use the serial cradle with my iBook. So, I'll put the cradle up for sale on eBay as well. Then, I'll look for the USB version that will work with the iBook. I am only looking forward to Hearts of Space later tonight.

Monday April 15

An uneventful day in the salt mines. I am still pondering my situation at both the Asylum and the Diploma Mill. I will continue with my present policies for now. Pseudo-professor Mari was in the faculty computer room this afternoon. She had an altercation with a troublesome student, so she was writing an "affidavit" of the facts to cover herself in case a complaint is lodged against her. I advised her to apologize to the student, but only concerning her reaction. I can see that Pseudo-professor Mari is at wit's end, just like myself. For the most part, I adapt well to the stupidity that I am confronted with. I have been able to use my creativity to circumvent almost all of the benign policies placed before me. I have also used unorthodox methods to reduce my workload. That's probably why I manage to survive while so many others have fallen. That's also why I am the only one who isn't complaining about the pay.

Shirley looked extremely fatigued today. She told me that she was very upset last night because her siblings were poking fun at her since she is still living with her parents and only working part-time. Perhaps that will be incentive for her to snap into action. Vanessa called last night. When I called her back, she was not able to talk because her mother wanted to use the phone. Vanessa mentioned something about "being in a dilemma." She stopped by my class this morning, but she was late for an appointment. So, I didn't get to talk with her. Thank goodness.

Tuesday April 16

Shirley and I ended up at Jamba Juice for lunch. We sat outside and drank our smoothies. Several students and former students walked by, as usual. I also bought a few Jamba Juice gift certificates to give to the St. Andrews Priory high school students who are serving as assistants to me at the Diploma Mill. Shirley also mentioned that Ramona had lectured her about not getting upset when people egg her on about something. I surmise that Shirley was much more upset than she admitted.

I restored my monk haircut this afternoon. It is even shorter than last time. That's the way I like it. Sheesh! I am already fatigued and the week has just started. Shirley wanted me to attend a high school basketball game that her team is playing in at the high school just up the street. When I returned home, I just wanted to relax. My mind is preoccupied by other issues which are putting me at wit's end. I will spend the rest of the evening with my beloved iBook.

Wednesday April 17

Shirley gave me a Spam Musubi for lunch. We ended up chatting after class. I can see why Ramona is always lecturing Shirley. She seems prone to falling back into the old local ways. She is young, but she's not a kid anymore. I see this trait in a lot of the locals. I saw it in myself. Sheesh! I mailed my State tax return with the amount that I owe enclosed. Nonetheless, it looks as though I will meet my mid-year financial goals in the middle of May.

The rest of the day was uneventful. I did not go to the gym, and so I feel extremely sluggish. I will spend the rest of the evening with my beloved iBook. The latest upgrade for Mac OS X is available, so I have to download it. The "Meaning of Life" Listserv has been more active lately. I have spent some time making my contributions. Most of the topics have already been discussed in the journal. I develop my thoughts here before introducing them to the group.

Thursday April 18

Another uneventful day. I have absolutely nothing to write about, most likely because my mind has turned to mush. And, it's easy to see why — I downloaded MacSolitaire the other day. No, I haven't taken to playing the game for several hours straight like my old days with Windows Solitaire. There's also a Mac version of Mahjongg that I may download later. One can never escape these old standards. What is the appeal? I'm sure that familiarity is one reason. The other reason is to kill time with mindless activities, Maybe I should see if I can find that Clint Black song, "Killing Time is Killing Me," and download it as well. Sheesh!

I did not see Shirley at all today, which is kind of unusual. I don't think she was on campus. Looks like she's slipping back into the familiar local ways. Times are tough in Hawai'i and it's just not getting any better. I have tried to make my local students think hard about the situation. However, they all seem prone to repeat the same mistakes that I made eons ago. As always, I'm busy talking to myself. I took the first express bus out of the salt mines. I just wanted out, if you know what I mean. I'll spend the evening with my beloved iBook. It's time to download Mahjongg!

Friday April 19

I am extremely fatigued. I'm only thankful that I had another uneventful day. Most of my students at the Diploma Mill have turned in their final projects. Essentially, they are done with my class, although the official end of the term is on May 8th. A significant percentage of my students have not turned in their final projects, so I may have a high failure rate. This is not good. I will spend all of next week grading the projects. Then, I may have to apply a more "creative" grading method, if you know what I mean.

I've noticed that my personality has been changing for the worse. I have not been able to stop this trend. I have become much more defiant. Haughty is probably a better descriptor. Very unbecoming of a monk. I'm not sure why this has happened. I believe that my experiences as a pseudo-professor have hardened the oversized cranium. Students these days continually look for vulnerabilities to exploit. That's why I cannot show any sign of weakness. At times, I come across like a real jerk, even to other faculty. The interesting part is that I am not even half as stressed out as I used to be when I was more sympathetic (read: gullible).

I have been playing MacSolitaire quite a bit. I may be repeating my own pathetic history again. Fortunately, I decided against downloading Mahjongg. Otherwise, I would get nothing done. The weekend is going to be same routine. Moms is preparing to cook a whole mess of food for the Ninja Turds. I will be listening to the psychotic classical pieces on public radio on my beloved Bose Acoustic Wave. You know the drill. I will probably also do some quality thinking such that I have something to include in the journal. Sheesh!

Saturday April 20

I removed MacSolitaire from my beloved iBook this morning. I have wasted too much time again on a totally mindless game. The only computer game that I am interested in obtaining is The Sims. Then, I'll add the Hot Date expansion pack. That's as close as I will ever get to being in a relationship. Baha! Ha! Ha! Haaaa! In my daily adventures, I find that I deal almost exclusively with babes. I have observed the usual nauseating characteristics and sometimes scandalous behavior. Thus, I am even more convinced that the monastic life is the only sane and viable option for the ol' lavahead.

My weekends are not as tortuous as they used to be. For one thing, I don't have to deal with the Ninja Turds. Also, lapsing in and out of a coma isn't so bad. Other people are either working or going shopping. Neither is acceptable. I still find myself spending too much time perusing the CompUSA flyers. Shopping is really the only satisfying experience that most people have. I still desire to own the Titanium PowerBook G4 for some reason. Yet, my little iBook has been a phenomenal computer. It's a sheer pleasure to use. I dread using those Windows boxes when I'm in the salt mines. As boring as it may seem, I have not reverted to the consumption of the "Hammer."

Moms delivered the prepared food to the Ninja Turds as to be expected. The phone has been ringing all morning, and I assume that it was Mrs. Turd (read: the dolt file clerk). Moms baked some salmon (pronounced "sal-men") just for the dolt. I am really glad that the stupid bitch invoked the family feud again. I was really getting sick and tired of hearing Mr. Turd (formerly my bro) tell me his inane story about how he was duly relegated to dig holes for fence posts in lieu of carpentry.

I walked to the gym this afternoon and did my usual weekend routine. There was a bit of a downpour during my walk home. I was sopping wet, no doubt because of some kind of karma concerning my own poor attitude and increasing defiance. The rain actually felt refreshing. I felt a kind of spiritual cleaning, as it were. Lord knows, I need some sense of renewal.

Sunday April 21

I have been reading the alternative news sources once again in an attempt to learn the truth. I am even more firmly convinced that the truth cannot be gleaned from conventional sources. The moneychangers have quite a bit at stake in the world theater. The chaos and subterfuge created by the powers-that-be can only serve a more nefarious purpose gilded with greed and corruption. The sheer number of innocent lives being sacrificed by these slimeballs is sickening. How can we let this continue? Their lust for power and money has blinded these fools. They are calling for the End of Days. When the hand of the Almighty comes down on these puny wimps, will their money and their power over mortal men save them from being crushed like roaches? The Good Book has forewarned us about the appearance of increasing numbers of false prophets in the End of Days. They will quote the Scriptures and claim to represent the Almighty. Their actions and deeds will betray them. They serve another god — the one they call Satan, the Serpent, the Devil, the Antichrist, the sinister force, the sinister kahuna.

I did nothing worthy of mention today. I talked with Vanessa on the phone. She filled me in about her internship. She and several other Asylum students are being exploited by a loser Web design firm. She also told me about her new part-time job at the Hawai'i Convention Center as a cocktail server. I walked to the gym again. Then, I washed my beloved six-four later in the afternoon. Owning material possessions requires that they be maintained. That's the best reason to get rid of as much junk as possible. I can safely say that I'm glad that I divested myself of the tube many moons ago. The tube is the conduit to endless materialism. Exposure to the myriad advertising on the tube only encourages consumption. Oddly, I still have anxieties about money even though I have curbed my spending considerably. I am saving dough in a miserly fashion for no apparent purpose, aside from retirement. For now, I have all that I need.

I have been listening to a program called Gardner McKay's Stories on the Wind on public radio. I didn't particularly like the program before when Gardner read his own stories. A few weeks ago, I observed that the production had improved and someone else now narrates Gardner's stories. I actually look forward to this program, more so than Hearts of Space, if you can believe it. The spoken word on radio can be relaxing and entertaining, unlike the talking heads on the tube.

Monday April 22

I am already fatigued and the week has only just begun. Grading the substandard project submissions from my students at the Diploma Mill is taking a toll on my sanity. I have also had to listen to number of feeble excuses which tend to accompany late submissions. There has been one teary-eyed encounter thus far with a local babe. I realized that she had attempted to take me for a fool when I checked her work and discovered that her term research paper was less than two pages in length. I really am not in the mood for this kind of chicanery.

It is my impression that there is so little honesty and integrity in the world anymore. Government, business, and religious leaders have done little to serve as pillars of the world community. The tube, and notably Western programming, has been responsible for spreading moral and ethical decay. The continuous theater of violence and genocide has made life cheap. Arrogance and defiance are on the rise, threatening the very fabric of society. We are on the verge of world anarchy, and hardly anyone cares. It's also extremely difficult to find a decent person these days, no less one who cares about anything besides money. There is no natural affection either. Just walk down the street and observe how many people attempt to shove you out of their way or run you over with their cars. What we need is a goon squad of "attitude adjusters" — an elite corps equipped with Nova Spirit devices who pull people aside randomly and jolt their craniums a few times. Ahh, the Nova Spirit! How I long to apply it to some dickhead!

I have not been carrying my can of pepper spray with me for a while. I had a discussion with a student today who knew Toad. She wanted to know about the pathetic details that led to Toad's arrest. As I related the woeful tale, I realized that I have become lax about my own personal safety. These are troubled times. Toad could appear at any time and engage in a psychotic rampage. I really need a "nine" (read: 9mm). I should have become a cop when I had a chance. However, I was worried about whether I would really turn into Dirty Kimo. For example, if I had been a cop at the scene of the Rodney King beatings, I would have drawn my weapon and arrested all of the perpetrators. If they had tried to rush me, I would have fired upon my fellow cops. It would have been a bloodbath. I told all of this Shirley the other day. She probably thought that I was losing it. Sheesh!

Tuesday April 23

After being the recipient of a serious attitude problem from a student at the Asylum, I observed that someone had left a printed picture of Tupac's autopsy picture next to my stuff on the table in class. Tupac was gunned down by his record company homeys. Thus, I have received my first anonymous death threat. I am now clearly a legend amongst faculty when this latest bit of nonsense is coupled with the adventures of Toad. The student in question is a suspect and the sad part is that she works for the Asylum. I am now seriously contemplating the acquisition of a "nine." The rest of the day was uneventful. I did more grading, and then I departed the salt mines on the first express bus out.

I called Roach and asked if we could meet at his house. He lives a long block away from moms' place. I walked to Roach's house. We talked about a variety of issues. Now, I'm not exactly endeared to Roach after his bungling of the Toad affair, but I always follow protocol. There are serious problems at the Asylum and I am doing all that I can to change them. That's part of my job as opposed to the other lapdog faculty. Naturally, I could be setting myself up for the fall. Who knows? Who cares?

The IRS deposited my refund directly to my money market account. I am now only $1,200 away from meeting my mid-year financial goal. I will actually meet my goal on May 1st. Can you believe it? Of course, if I have to buy a "nine," that will set me back about $550 or so. I will start carrying my can of pepper spray on my person at all times from tomorrow.

Wednesday April 24

An uneventful day. So far, no attempts on the ol' lavahead's life. My "agents" at the Asylum have been scouring most of the computers to find any trace of the origins of the death threat. So far, zilch. I have completed most of my initial grading tasks. However, I still have a stack of research papers to read. There are potentially 23 students who will flunk out of 90 total. This is unusually high and, no doubt, will not sit well with the Diploma Mill's administration. There's nothing that I can do. I just want to finish my grading so I can take care of my neglected personal business. I have been extremely fatigued because of the strange dreams of the past few nights. My old ex-babe Susan and that babe Deena were starring in them, which may explain the fatigue. Sheesh!

I have been too busy to think about much. The activity on the "Meaning of Life" Listserv has dwindled to nothing. With the end of the term at the Diploma Mill rapidly approaching, everyone is probably busy grading and dealing with the same kind of lunacy that I am usually privy to. I will spend a relaxing evening with my beloved iBook.

Thursday April 25

Time is an interesting concept. We humans seem extremely preoccupied with squeezing in as much as we can within the limited constraints of time and mortality. The other creatures on the planet exist in a timeless fashion, oblivious to both the beginning and the end of time. Yet, what exactly is "time" in the Universe? As I sat and talked with a student in the Asylum's library, I noticed that babe Deena sitting at one of the computers. What a hottie! I must confess that all I could think about was doin' da wild thing with her. My mind was ready to snap. She probably knew that I was looking at her and observing every contour of her beautifully sculpted body. I would never be able to maintain my monk vows if she ever came on to the oversized cranium. I'd be all over her like a cheap suit. I am not even certain about how I have stooped to this level of debauchery.

At least I enjoyed another uneventful day. At the Asylum, both Roach and Bug stopped by my class to admonish my students about the death threat. I talked briefly with Pseudo-professor John in the faculty computer room at the Diploma Mill. Later, I departed the salt mines on the first express bus out. Once again, I'll spend my evening with my beloved iBook, the only worthy possession that I own.

Friday April 26

For the past two days, I've rushed home, taken a lukewarm shower, and then sat in my favorite chair. Perhaps my chronic fatigue has made me more aware of how relaxing it is to sit in my favorite chair. The almost complete silence in moms' house also adds to the ambiance. My days are really a constant barrage of visual and aural noise. It's unnerving at best. My day was uneventful but, as always, hectic. I find that my language is getting coarser and my patience is diminishing in proportion. I have been noticing babes like Deena again. I measure time by the incremental gains in my money market account. There still is no meaning to my life. I merely exist.

The weekend is upon us once again. How fast the past week has gone by! As usual, I'll spend my time vegetating. Then, I'll return to the salt mines. The routine seems endless until I look in the mirror and see yet another crack (read: wrinkle) on the face of stone. I'm not getting any younger. These are the Viagra Years. Babes will be a moot issue very soon. Sheesh! Laura, a student at the Asylum, loaned me a couple of DVDs. I will view them on my iBook. Yes, my beloved iBook is my life. Well, I'd rather be doin' da wild thing with Deena, but that's too much to ask.

Saturday April 27

It's getting harder to maintain the journal. I am steadily losing interest in it. I have little to discuss that hasn't been said before. There are thousands of other more interesting journals on the Net. My journal just cannot compete. I noticed the same trend with Anonder's journal. In the past few months, his entries have become more terse. There are missing days. I believe that he made the right decision in retiring early. Of course, he had amassed considerable financial resources. He has maintained a very frugal life-style, which was probably extremely difficult to adjust to. I am on a parallel course sans any dough. This morning, I looked outside in the cul de sac and saw that most of the neighbors were gone. They either went to work or went shopping, as usual.

I find myself preoccupied with issues in time. It's surprising to see that a period of 40 years is so short. Even the last five years seem more like a few days. If it weren't for the journal, I would hardly recall the events of the recent past. Lately, I have become increasingly frustrated in dealing with the twenty-something group. I see the same misconceptions of endless time that I once held, and nothing I say will change that. Why should I bother anyway? Everyone has to pay his or her dues.

I walked to the gym and did my usual routine. Aside from that, I spent most of the day lapsing in and out of a coma. No doubt, tomorrow will be the same. I viewed Heist last night. Later, I will view Wild Things, although I have already seen it. How can anyone resist viewing a DVD with gorgeous, scandalous babes?

Sunday April 28

My nerves are shot. Lapsing in and out of a coma is bringing me closer to the edge of violence. I have not made any progress in listing my junk on eBay. Nor have I inquired about my overpaid taxes. At the last minute, I decided to go to the gym. If I had stayed at home, I would have gone berserk. As I walked down to Koko Marina, I observed that I was the sole pedestrian, as usual. I have nothing in common with any of these fools in this society, I thought to myself. How can they all afford to buy new cars and drive around incessantly? It never dawned upon me before that these morons probably make several more times what I make in wages. My pathetic and frugal existence is mainly due to my poverty. If I made hella dough, then I would probably be a total materialistic and hedonistic fool. Instead, I must live like a pauper just to survive. I can live without anything else but my iBook and my hurdy-gurdy DVDs. That's all I need in life. I viewed Wild Things again last night. I may actually purchase that DVD for my collection and not just because Neve Campbell and Denise Richards are awesome babes. Rather, it pretty much summarizes our modern life and values.

I set up my Bose Acoustic Wave to listen to the psychotic classical pieces on public radio. However, this is Pledge Week. All of the regular programming is conspicuously missing. So, no Gardner McKay tonight. As I listened, I noticed that all of the talking heads sounded haole and, naturally, had haole surnames. I became perturbed, bordering on violence, because I realized that the upper crust of society here is purely haole. This is the caste that the handmaiden yearned to be a part of. I'll never donate a dime, even though I listen to the music of the unkempt nosehair crowd. That's the beauty of it, for I am one of the oppressed. I may just view Wild Things again. Sheesh!

Monday April 29

I had an usual dream left night that left me extremely fatigued all day. The dream was somewhat prophetic, which leads me to believe that I am a soothsayer after all. As I was significantly unnerved by the dream, my patience was then reduced to an all-time low. The day was somewhat uneventful. Later in the afternoon, I ran into Pseudo-professor Jim in the restroom at the Diploma Mill. We ended up sitting and talking on one of the benches near the classrooms. Professor Norman joined in the conversation. I was rather intrigued by his dissertation. He also gave me a copy of a manuscript of a short opus that he had written. Prior to this, my impression was that he was a pompous ass. I have learned that Pseudo-professor Jim is a war hawk. He firmly believes that this country has a right to meddle in the affairs of other countries and use force, if necessary, to promote our interests abroad. I was even more perturbed by his viewpoint that the Native Americans were justifiably slaughtered because they were "savages." All of this proves that sometimes education does little to improve humanity. Frankl's assertion was correct — there are only two "races" of humans — the "race" of the decent man and the "race" of the indecent man. The end of days is upon us.

I requested copies of my State tax returns for the past two years. I've also calculated my deduction, so that I can file the amended tax returns soon. Hopefully, I will list a few of my useless possessions on eBay either tonight or tomorrow. I'm afraid that a few of my hurdy-gurdy DVDs will be put up for auction. However, I have vowed to replace them with ones starring that luscious babe Tera Patrick. What a hottie!

Tuesday April 30

At the Asylum, Mike confronted me about bad-mouthing him in my classes. A few students allegedly disclosed this tidbit to him. I forced the issue by taking the matter to Roach, and subsequently launched an investigation into my own conduct. Roach then spent 45 minutes chastising me and threatening to terminate me once he discovers that the allegations are true. He also laid in on me concerning my can of pepper spray, yet he has offered no solid guarantee of my personal safety since the death threat. In the course of his babbling, Roach continually contradicted himself and made obvious circumlocutions to positions he supposedly valued. In the end, I was not surprised to see that Roach has not changed. He is an insecure, little boy who is trying to wear a man's pair of shoes. He is grappling with historical antecedents of being a nobody and a loser. This hostility shows right through in times of duress. As has been proven during the fiasco with Toad, Roach is unable to deal with real issues. He is a "textbook" moron.

Mike, on the other hand, is becoming more paranoid because he has pushed the envelope beyond what is rational. He rarely shows up to class, is devoid of pedagogy, and is more concerned with making commissions off of cell phone sales. Most of his students are either extremely elated with lax style and easy grading. Others are fed up with his crap. Oddly, either Roach has no idea what is going on or he chooses to ignore it. The most pathetic part is that Mike facilitates the computer networking classes. These are important major classes. I know all of his students, and they are all complaining. Most of them rarely show up to class because they know they will still achieve a 4.0 grade point average. Rather than deal with a real academic problem, Roach is more concerned about Mike's morale. I am actively prodding students to go in and file an affidavit concerning my alleged behavior. At this point in time, I expect to be terminated within three weeks. If I am not terminated, I will continue on until I reach my financial goals. Then, I will just stop showing up for work. I will not even give Roach the courtesy of advanced notice. I truly care about my students at the Asylum but, as far as the institution is concerned, I am only there to collect a paycheck. If Roach only knew about the sheer number of students that I have urged to go to another school. I am not the only one who has heard the administration talking from both sides of its mouth. Even a stupid, lame policy like the so-called "dress code" has been a miserable failure because no one wants to be the villain by enforcing it. The "dress code" is the source of endless laughter amongst the students as is the identification card. No one even bothers to wear the damned thing anymore, even though the Asylum spent a fortune to implement it.

I am winding things down at the Diploma Mill. I am ready for Summer. Who knows? I may have the whole Summer off. There's not much that I can do about that. I am just happy to be alive and well. Laura gave me the Wild Things DVD as a gift. I will cherish it. I look forward to the day that I can look back at this crap and laugh. My only goal is to obtain a few Tera Patrick DVDs for my hurdy-gurdy library. Why can't I find a babe like Tera? Sheesh!

To be continued ... Go to M.08

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