Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Unemployee of the month

Not too long ago, I wrote about how I miss having a "real" job if only because I liked people watching on the train to/from work. ("Real" jobs: you get to leave the house and pretend to work all day, as opposed to freelance where it's actual work 24/7 or starve.) Tonight, after yet another 14-hour work day, I found myself missing something else: the web sites that once kept me very busy at a "real" job.

To counter the grimace I used to get from my boss upon arrival, I'd kick the day off with a laugh thanks to, an amusing collection of animal photos with captions written as though the pets wrote 'em:

One of my coworkers dreamed of having her cats featured on the site. Last I heard, she'd submitted several photos but was still short of the necessary "cheezburgers" (votes) for acceptance. This is what happens to childhood dreams when people work long hours in cubicles, I guess.

Then, when it became necessary to look busy and have a screen full of text, it was off to craigslist's "Missed Connections" ( to catch up on the strange and sad postings of New York's hopeless romantics, for example:

STARBUCKS 103rd street - "You are so beautiful" sign, in the window - m4w (Upper West Side)
Reply to:
Date: 2008-05-07, 12:40AM EDT

Hey, I really hope you see this - I'm the guy who wrote on the piece of paper outside the window tuesday afternoon. You were in a pink top, with short brownish hair and dazzling eyes.

You have this delightful and infectious energy about you, and I'd like to get to know you - in any context (romantic or not) it doesn't matter to me, I'd just like to know more about you.
While most of the postings are about people searching for that someone they saw at the diner (but just didn't have the matzoh balls to talk to at the time), others leave you feeling kinda dirty, as in:
Unicorn 22nd st - looking for the guy I fucked last night - m4m - 35 (Chelsea)
Reply to:
Date: 2008-05-03, 6:37PM EDT

To the guy in the plaid shirt I fucked last night - you must be in you're mid to late 40's or early 50's (no offense). I'm the short bald guy with the stache in the brown bomber jacket
I wanted to say that I must have been crazy to do that with you.
You seem like a nice man and I can't believe that I had unsafe sex with you.

Why did I do it and why did you let me?

I don't do that and I have been so careful - up until now - and have tried to be "good". I drank too much, ate too little and mostly was just desperate to touch someone who wanted to be touched as well.
Listen, all I want to say is that I am sorry and that I should never have done that. I've always tested negative ( it's beyond hopeful) but I hope you too.
Mostly I think that these quick instant gratification moments with strangers are just what they are but I also think that "together" we prey on each other's weaknesses and loneliness.
I apologize for my delusional behavior.
All the best
And still others are straight up Janice Dickinson:
you punched me in the head. - w4m - 22 (East Village)
Reply to:
Date: 2008-05-03, 6:47PM EDT

I was walking up Bowery at about 2pm on a Friday afternoon -- I didn't know love was headed my way, but you did, and you were. You screamed "Get the fuck outta my way!!!" as you approached me on your bike, which had an extra wheel attached to the handlebars (clever.) Your unkempt, fly-ridden long mane of hair was blowing in the wind, or rather, I imagine it would have been, if not for the layer of crust upon it. And then, just as you got close enough to whisper a sweet nothing into my ear, you reached out with your left hand and punched me. In the head. You punched me in the head, and then continued on your magical journey, still screaming "Get the fuck outta my way!" Well, I just wanted to say thank you, thank you for getting into MY way on that providential afternoon.
And while just a bit off-topic from being a "missed connection," this is probably the most amusing post ev-er:
who put the dead bird in my mailbox? - w4m - 27 (crown heights)
Reply to:
Date: 2008-05-04, 5:24PM EDT

a) how did you get into my mailbox in the first place, it is locked
b) did you kill the bird?
c) it died horribly, that much was clear
d) you're psycho
e) do I know you?
f) if I do know you, I don't want to know you
g) if I don't know you, what did I do to inspire you to put a dead bird in my mailbox?
h) I don't know how to disinfect a mailbox from a dead bird, I'm worried about diseases and have used five different kinds of cleaner but still feel like the bird's still in there still and like my bills and my catalogues and my coupons have dead bird on them
i) it was a hummingbird, I looked it up - they don't even live in New York - this is so f*ing psycho, I can't believe this
j) are you the mailman?
k) I'm always nice to the mailman
l) the super didn't care when I told him what happened
m) the neighbors didn't care either
n) do you have some kind of problem with birds?
o) don't put anything else in my mailbox
p) unless it's an apology
q) no, I take that back, I don't even want an apology
r) what am I supposed to do with this bird - it's in bubblewrap in a bag in a shoebox in the freezer right now - am I supposed to bury it - where? how? in a construction site where they've jackhammered through the concrete - where is a person supposed to bury things in this city?
s) I could drop it in the Gowanus canal, but that seems undignified
t) I could drop it in the ocean, but the ocean is so big and it is such a small bird
u) I could drop it in the toilet but it would probably get stuck
v) I hear this whirring around my ears every time I go to the mailbox and I'm pretty sure it's ghost bird, and I'm all "it wasn't me that killed you, bird!" but still the whirring doesn't go away until I get to the stairwell
w) am I supposed to eat it - maybe you were trying to feed me - don't you know I'm a vegetarian?
x) if this was Ricky, I'm gonna beat your ass, mama told you stop bothering the zoo
y) if this was Gina, I'm sorry, I'm sorry, how many times I gotta say I'm sorry?
z) I could drop it off the roof, maybe it will reincarnate while falling and I can start reading my mail again
For those with "real" jobs, a friendly note of caution: these sites are highly addictive. Seriously, being able to spend quality time on them again may just be the spark that gets me in the job hunt.

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