Saturday, July 23, 2005

Lessons that I should have learned by now ... but haven't

1. When women say "I think a good sense of humor is the most important quality in a man," the definition of "man" is "good-looking, athletic male."

2. Never go all in with three jacks when there's a queen on the table.

3. Some friendships don't last, no matter what you do.

4. Stupid people can't suddenly become non-stupid, no matter how hard you try to teach them.

5. The strippers only care about your money, not you personally.

6. When people say "I'd love to come to Guam someday" what they mean is "Where the fuck is Guam?"

7. Some people can actually tell when I'm making fun of them, no matter how smooth I think I am.

8. Mixing colors with whites saves time at the laundro-mat, but it fucks up your clothes.

9. Wendy's burgers suck.

10. I can't go back in time to do things right. Once the opportunity has past, it is lost.

11. My apartment won't clean itself, and the little magical elves who fix shoes won't do it either.

12. If there really is a God, he's a very hands-off manager.

13. Often, crime really does pay.

14. Until I am rich enough to be able to play and/or practice golf on a daily basis, I won't get much better than I am now, and right now I suck.

15. Just because people are friendly with you doesn't mean they're your friends.

16. I will die lonely and likely alone ... and no one will know for a couple of days, so my corpse will REALLY stink when they finally break into the apartment.

17. Children have no propriety filter, which means they are unflinchingly honest.

18. About 99.9 percent of the stuff they sell on informercials are complete crap and don't work. Some exceptions: The George Foreman grill, the set-it-and-forget-it rotisserie.

19. As much as I think it would be the perfect career for me, I will never play poker professionally.

20. Not all lists need to end on an even number.

Animal Planet and Discovery Channel

OK, as if my bank of useless trivia weren't already large enough, extensive watching of the Discovery Channel and Animal Planet has boosted the amount of meaningless minutae by an inordinate amount.

Do I need to know that female hyenas have clitorises that are, oddly enough, shaped like penises?

I now know much more about the bushmaster, the reticulated python, the boomslang and the fer de lance than anyone other than a herpetologist — or someone bitten by one of the aforementioned snakes — has any business knowing.

I also have a treasure trove of data on ancient Peruvians, theories about Atlantis being in South America and crop circles.

My curse is to know a little about a whole lot of things.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

just wondering ...

How many people who are married or in a serious relationship and go through an "Extreme Makeover" do you think stay with their significant other for any length of time afterward?

I was just flipping through the channels and this mom was remade ... and she was truly hot.

I'm sure the husband was happy ... after all, he loved her and stayed with her when she was non-hot. So he totally got an upgrade. What did she get? The same old guy she left behind before she was fabulous and sexy.

And even if they stay together, I'm sure his jealousy wire is on super sensitive. He's probably constantly checking out who's checking out his now-hot wife, and how she's taking it, and whether she's encouraging it and flirting and stuff.

Was just wondering.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Liberation Day ...

Most people don't know that Guam was the only populated U.S. territory that was occupied during World War II (some of the Aleutian islands were occupied for a short time). Hell, most people don't know where Guam is, or any of its significance to the United States.

Japan bombed Guam on the same day it bombed Pearl Harbor. The difference is that Japan invaded Guam and occupied it until August 1944 — more than 2-1/2 years.

Guam became a U.S. territory in 1898, at the culmination of the Spanish-American War. It maintained a military presence on the island. The people here, the Chamorros, considered themselves a part of the United States, even though America had yet to grant citizenship. There are few groups of people as patriotic as Chamorros.

Despite a brutal occupation which included forced labor, concentration camps, rape, torture, beheadings and other murders, the Chamorros maintained their faith in America. Several families help keep a U.S. Navy radioman, George R. Tweed, hidden and safe from the Japanese. They knew they would be killed for helping, but they continued to do so. Many more families kept hidden small American flags — knowing the penalty for possession of such was death.

Their hopes were made real on July 21, 1944, when U.S. Armed Forces — primarily Marines, but also some elements of the Army — landed on Guam. It took a few weeks of bloody fighting, along with thousands of U.S. casualties, before Guam was liberated. This is why the majority of locals love the men and women of the military, why we open our villages and our homes to young people thousands of miles away from home, feeding them our local cooking and making them feel like they have a second home here.

Tomorrow, the island will celebrate that event with a parade down the main road of our capital village. A month-long carnival continues. People are camping out along the parade route, barbecuing our famous island specialties. Families are together and celebrating.

Guam has never failed to give back to America, so grateful have been the people for the Liberation. Guam ranks among the top in any community for military recruitment per capita, and that's for all major forces — the Marines, Army, Navy and Air Force. That's been the case for decades.

Ask anyone who's been involved with hands-on training at the boot camp level for any length of time, and they will tell you how much they relish having a kid from Guam come through, especially a Chamorro young man or woman.

Guam suffered the highest per capita deaths in Vietnam. And in the Persian Gulf War. During the current campaign, several more have died. Several others have been wounded severely.

My point here is this: Even though America sometimes forgets us ... we never — and will never — forget them.

Happy Liberation Day.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Hurricanes, schmurricanes ...

OK people. I'm sorry if you or your loved ones have been hit by recent or not so recent hurricanes in the continental United States.

But you know what? You're giant pussies. You have no idea what it truly feels like to get slammed into by the full force of hurricane.

Where I live, hurricanes are typhoons. Category 5 hurricane = supertyphoon. I've been through a lot of them. The whole community of Guam has. One year, we had like 8 typhoons and supertyphoons either hit us directly or come close enough that we felt the power and destruction of its winds.

See, when America gets hit by a hurricane, it doesn't feel the full brunt for too long. For a brief period, there might be full sustained power. But when a hurricane or typhoon hits a large land mass, it weakens, and quickly. Yes, there is still some strong wind and storm surge.

But how's this: Guam once got hit by a typhoon with sustained winds of 150 mphs (gusts to 175 and up) for 12 hours straight. Then the eye passed over the island. Then we got the backside of the storm, winds going in the opposite direction, for another 12 hours.

See? The U.S. mainland never gets the backside of storms; just the front. And anyone who has been through both can tell you the backside is the more deadly/dangerous/damaging. Why? Because everything is bent in one direction from the front side, weakened and initially damaged. The back side, with opposite winds, snaps everything back, often breaking it and completing destruction.

Ever seen a steel-reinforced, concrete power pole snapped in half? That's happened here multiple times. I've seen the solid steel skeletons of warehouses warped like a funny-house mirror distorts images. I've seen cars flipped over, moved blocks, torn apart by storm surge.

We have this one beach where the parking lot is located about 150 yards from the water, and is about 30 feet higher than sea level. It had three small concrete (steel-reinforced) picnic pavilions with one concrete picnic table in the middle of each, plus a bigger paviliion that could fit a lot more people, with a ceiling of about 20 feet. After one storm, the surge of the ocean pushed sand and rocks from the beach to about 5 feet below the parking lot level. Two of the three small pavilions were just gone. One bent and broken. The main pavilion was FILLED with rocks and sand. There was about a foot or two of space between all of that and the ceiling.

We're typhoon survival experts here. We've gone months without running water and/or power at different times in our lives. We've been through the absolute worst that Mother Nature can dish out.

So excuse me, and us in general, if we don't feel sorry for any of you mainlanders who have dealt with the "fury of nature." In fact, cry me, and us, a river.

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Rules of the Road ...

OK, here's the deal:

1. On a three-lane road, the far-left lane is for fast drivers. The far-right lane is for slow traffic. Middle lane is up for grabs. If you plan to turn left in two miles but are a slow driver, stay in the far right lane until you near your turn.

How hard is this to grasp? Why am I always having to pass slow-driving asses on the right?

2. If you're going to pull out in front of me by ignoring a stop sign or from a parking lot, you'd goddamn better well drive with some kind of speed. After all, you were in too much of a hurry to worry about following the law and coming to a stop, right? It just follows that you would be equally willing to break the law by driving with some degree of alacrity.


Broke off my ass ...

Nothing like having about $5 left for the rest of the week on a Sunday.

Guess it's gonna be PB&J's and tuna fish sammiches, as well as meatless spaghetti, for the bulk of the week.

Here's one consequence of not having any credit cards that you can use!

But, this Friday I will feel more free than I have in a long, long time.