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Remember that time I told you about my vacation and then wished someone a Happy Birthday and then told you about my complete social ineptitude?
Yeah. That time.

10.08.04 + 1:18 p.m.

I meant to post this right after returning from my vacation a couple of weeks ago, but I completely forgot. Well, here it be.

Thing about cruises, you don’t do anything. That’s their appeal, apparently. You sit by the pool, eat from the ever-flowing cornucopia of freely available food, drink lots of rum-laced stuff, and watch fellow cruisers engage in such ice-breakers as line dancing, “The Men’s Hairy Chest Competition,” (gotta wonder about that gender distinction,) and, bless me, the goddamned Hokey Pokey.

Yeah, I had fun. I got more sun when I was asea than I have in the past, say, six years, since I hate bathing suits and am averse to public nudity in the daylight. But I sucked it up and sucked it in, donned a bathing suit, and laid in the sun with my sister, laughing, reading, and drinking multicolored drinks with parasols and polysyllabic names like Mexican Mango Madness Splash.

It was sort of a long week, though. I mean I’ve no complaints about the great service, incredible food, getting all dressed up on a nightly basis, and getting a kind of intense facial in which the skin specialist kept comparing my skin cells to grapes and raisins, but it took me a few days to settle into the forced lethargy. On the plus side, the cruise line I was on was the most affordable of the lot, and geared towards the Young, Single, and Perpetually Broke, (reprezent!) and families. In other words, it was Floating Redneck Disney Vegas.

So, when I wasn’t in the mood for gluttony or the Macarena,* there was plenty of opportunity for people watching and the passing of moral judgment. Not to mention, I also got to spend some quality time with sisterbeans.

Cruise Staff are Going to Heaven, Where They Will Shower Their Divine Poop
Upon the Ignorami They Once Served

Example #1:

Our first day on board, we were served by a Panamanian waiter named Elmer. A member of our very large group, most of whom I hadn’t previously met, decided that our brown-skinned friend didn’t “look like” an Elmer, and insisted on calling him Carlos, Miguel, Julio, and Jose, all within the same sentence. It was ugly.

Elmer laughed graciously, but I swear, his eyes were saying, “Drink up, asshole. Oh, and you don’t think I ‘look like’ an Elmer? I bet you don’t think that creamy shit in you Pina Colada ‘looks like’ my ejaculate, either.”

Example #2:

Every day, a Trinidadian reggae band named “Caribbean Vibes,” or “Vibous Caribbeous,” or “Vibathalon,” or something, played on the pool deck. They were quite good, and enthusiastic despite the fact that they were seemingly only allowed to play the A-side tracks of Bob Marley’s Greatest Hits. During rendition #79 of “I Shot the Sheriff,” another member of our group said, “You know, I really like this song, but I don’t understand why they’re singing with Jamaican accents.”

Example #3:

Every night at dinner, we were treated to a waitstaff-performed conga line, aria, or fully choreographed “Feelin’ Hot! Hot! Hot!” dance number. It was fun to watch, but Christ, bless those poor folks who have to do that shit twice a day, seven days a week, with pastries balanced on their heads. Some days, it must seem like doing penance in TGI Friday’s.

Other Stuff

#1. I don’t understand Florida’s appeal at all. The weather SUCKS like HELL-WEATHER, with gah gross yucky stoppit humidity blanketing EVERYTHING! EVERYTHING! How the hell does anything get done in Florida? I don’t mind the frequent rainstorms, but I can’t stand the rest of it. Goddamn, that kind of weather just pisses me off. Florida feels less like a place where people live, and more like a place where airplanes go to avoid rusting.

#2. Hanging out with my big sister, who, despite being an overly didactic frat boy in the body of a tiny, tiny woman, is one of my favorite people ever invented. She’s the first person I ever worshipped, and I’m not sure I completely broke the habit.

#3. The sweet 80-year-old couple I met in the elevator, who were on board to celebrate their 30th anniversary, and planned to sail again on their 50th.

#4. Thinking that there is much more to Mexico than what is visible from the bar-and-shop-ridden Cozumel sidewalks, and being inspired to go back someday to wrangle through the country fo’ realz. You wanna come with me? Start saving your pesetas.

#5. Karaoke night on board the ship with my sister! Yay!

I, wearing flip-flops, a t-shirt, and a long, embroidered linen skirt, rocked the hell out of “Sweet Child of Mine” and elicited mighty cheers of “Yeeaaah, GEE-N-ARRR!” from the audience. Guns ‘n’ Roses are a big redneck crowd pleaser.

My sister rocked the hell out of some Whitney Houston song, inasmuch as any hell can possibly be rocked out of Whitney. Actually, I think Bobby Brown kind of finished her off in that department.


#6.Me, dancing with a tiny Polynesian man in a ginormous sombrero on said karaoke night. He introduced himself by tapping me on the shoulder and saying, “I am ALI! And I wanna DANCE with somebody!” How could I refuse? He tried swing-dancing, but just ended up grabbing my hand and rotating his hips back and forth while grinning at me from beneath the huge, saturn's ring-like brim of his bedazzled sombrero.

I think I intended to write more, but the moment has passed, the tan has faded, and I’m once again completely sleep-deprived.

I had fun, but I was so glad to get home. When my plane landed in Chicago, I boarded the el, and was soon surrounded by immigrants, indie rockers, homegirls, and greasy crazies. It made me happy.

Happiest of birthdays to one Mr. Sinsky Kluganovski, who has been rockin’ this sad planet for three whole decades. Congratulations, Mr. K, on 30 years of excellence. Looks like you’re just about ripe.

I will put something in the mail for you as soon as I remember to stop being such a damned airhead, but until then, I’ll just shoot the mooooon for yoooouuuu.

Happy! Birthday! Klugarsh!

I love birthdays. I freak out when someone’s birthday rolls around, I get all squealy and lame and huggy. I must sound like a phony asshole, when, really, the squeal is the result of repressed over-exhuberance. If I were to try to convey my full level of vicarious birthday excitement, I’d explode in a burst of glittery confetti, and fuck that.

Yay for friends’ birthdays. I’m so glad my friends got born.

Yeah, babydoll. I’m real glad you got born.

I don’t know why it’s impossible for me to relate to any of my co-workers. Yesterday, a bunch of folks were chatting in the break room, joking and laughing, and I swear I couldn’t understand a single fucking thing anyone said. Oh, I understood the words, they were speaking English in full sentences and whatever, but for whatever reason, I could not grasp the topic they were discussing. More, I don’t think I could fathom why they were having the conversation. It was a really, really strange reaction, and I think I might be an alien.

Job sucks balls.

Right. So, who wants to come over tonight and crash my pity-party of one? It’s okay, I’ll be busy feeling inadequate and unloved, but I can make time to accommodate unannounced guests.

I’m so glad it’s raining today.

Woo, Friday night. I'm so fucking excited, I could shit my own weight. Dammit.

* Hee! Come to find out, Macarena is in my spell-check. It has ARRIVED! The word "asea," however, is not. Microsoft Word is stupid, and has apparently not read much Melville.

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~ Last Five Entries ~

Days and Nights - 10.01.07

Eye-Boners - 07.20.07

Something About My Big Frickin' Bed - 07.11.07

Summertime Fix in Hawaii - 06.12.07

About Zigs - 04.26.07


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