November 10th, 2006

outta here (Bullitt)

I may be a Veteran, but this was not my Day

After spending 11 solid hours of working on the take home exam for Satellite Oceanography - which was assigned Monday and due today at 11AM - I finally got it done last night. When I got up this morning, there was an email from the instructor completely changing the terms for one of the longer image interpretation tasks in the exam, not only requiring it to be redone in its entirety, but requiring four images instead of two. This email was sent out at 7:30 this fucking morning. Fucking wonderful. So that's what I did this morning at work instead of. You know. WORK.

This exam, incidentally, is worth 40% of the grade for the whole fucking class. I am not even slightly thrilled with that instructor at this moment.

Half of Columbia downtown has been torn up and semi-barricaded for several months now due to ongoing street widening, subterranean power conduit upgrades, and beautification. This morning, the construction work was significantly intensified. ALSO, for some reason that was not yet apparent, the OTHER half of Columbia's downtown streets was barricaded off as well - with no construction in sight. This added a good 25 minutes to what is normally at most a 15 minute commute. I was not amused.

Then, after finishing REDOING the fucking exam and heading out from work to class - normally at most a 5 minute trip, including parking - I found no parking whatsoever anywhere, and had to loop around and eventually park a solid mile from class. More streets barricaded off. During my hike to class from the car, I discovered why all the barricades. There was a parade. And by "parade" I mean "five alarm clusterfuck."

First of all, somebody else might appreciate watching a fucking tank being - poorly - driven by some yahoo reservist asshole on their own city streets. But as delicious as the irony might be, I was not amused when said reservist inexpertly gunned 1200+ horsepower worth of diesel and rippled the asphalt under the treads - on one of the streets that WASN'T already ripped up for construction. Hey, jackass, can you go do that in Baghdad please? Turns out we aren't HAVING a fucking war here, and I don't really want to have to deal with TANK DAMAGE on the streets in my town, thanks. Following this poorly piloted tank were about 10 poorly piloted half-track and full-track APCs, all festooned with signs, all with - yet more - grinning yahoo reservists leaning out and yelling things at one another. Following THAT was a pack of about 500 high school Army JROTC kids shambling along in something vaguely resembling a formation, no two in step with one another, bellowing out - I shit you not - some half-incomprehensible garbage that seemed to be half running song, half football team fight song.

After getting through THAT and wading through a mass of traffic cops clustered up at the corner of Pendleton and Main for no apparent reason - both roads being blockaded off from several blocks away anyway - I discover three MORE schools worth of JROTC kids forming up on the fucking sidewalk on Sumter. THESE kids have flag corps attached, which means not only having to wade elbow-to-asshole through a few hundred high school kids to get to my damn Oceanography class, but also having to field a few 10-foot guidon poles complete with ornamental spearheads on the end as confused high schoolers do their inadvertent best to insert them in my eye socket as I walk by.

An hour and a half later when class let out, on my extended hike BACK to where I parked in BFE, I discovered that the parade was STILL fucking going on. Which means that the trip back to the office from the campus - which should have taken 5 minutes - takes 30.

And you know the REAL kicker to all this shit? I saw nobody - ABSOLUTELY NOBODY - watching this clusterfuck. That's right, the half of the town that ISN'T already torn up for construction got barricaded off for a parade full of larval forms and lackwits that NOT ONE SINGLE PERSON actually came to watch. All it accomplished was making getting anything done an utter and complete lost cause for the whole day.

At this point I think I am actually ready for this coming MONDAY because after the week I've had it's pretty difficult to have much hope for the weekend attached to it being any better.

evil - Mr. Gone

oh no, your week isn't over YET

After waiting 40 fucking minutes for a spot at the sushi bar, I catch the idiot hostess seating parties of two ahead of me as parties of two leave. After yelling at her and leaving, I realize that 40 minutes ALSO makes it after 7PM, meaning I can't buy liquor anymore, which I am out of. All of my friends are either out of town visiting family or out of town on business or working tonight.

Seriously, what the fucking hell. Do I REALLY have to wait two more days for this week to be OVER?!

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for those of you who are following along at home

About 8 PM I realized that I was still fucking starving. And I considered the expression I remembered on the hostess' face when I angrily declaimed "I have been waiting for 40 minutes!" at her. And realized that, probably, she really wasn't deliberately not seating me as a single so that she wouldn't have a single seat left unfilled when she had couples to put at the bar, she probably had just fucked up and forgotten she had a single waiting for the sushi bar, because I was being quiet and doing a sudoku in some retarded tinytown local paper while I waited.

So I went back, and she looked terrified to see me there again, and I asked her quietly "did you deliberately seat those people ahead of me?" and she put her hand on my arm and said "no, I would never do that, it was a mistake, I know you, I'm so sorry, I was in the back crying after you left - please stay, I'll buy you your first beer. Please, will you stay?" and she bought me a beer and I had sushi and I asked Maru-san "kyoo wa, nani o oishii desu ka?" and he humored me and I bought a round for all the chefs that wound up being a huge round because they were out of the small bottles and even the chef who's usually a sourpuss came over to knock glasses with me and say "kampai" and they gave me a beer back and before I left I spent like 20 minutes talking to the hostess, who it turns out takes Japanese at USC and I think I've seen her around the campus and she wants me to come to the Japanese club meetings that I never quite got around to going to back when I was taking Japanese where people drink and karaoke and then most of them stay and drink some more and the world is a slightly less hostile place now. Thank god. Good night.