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Archive for the ‘Unemployment’ Category

Back In The U.S. of A

Posted by evankessler on January 12, 2009

usa_flag_mapAfter spending the last two weeks of gallivanting around southeast Asia, I’m back in the good ol’ U.S. of A and not a moment too soon.  I returned on Saturday evening at 6pm as my plane landed at JFK International Airport, ending a day of travel that began as my plane took off Saturday morning at 9:15am Bangkok Time (9:15pm Friday New York Time).  With a quick 2 hour stop in Tokyo I was on my way back home and despite a seemingly above average amount of turbulence, I returned home safely to struggle with a twelve hour time difference and impending jet lag.

Despite American Airlines attempt to throw off my internal clock by serving me a continental breakfast at 5pm an hour prior to landing, I’d have to say I’m dealing with the readjustment quite well.  My first day back I fell asleep at 1am and last night I conked out a little after 11pm even though I had been ready to say goodnight sometime around 8:30.  I haven’t been sleeping quite as long as I’d like to, but I’m more or less on schedule.

Now comes the hard part.  Responsibility.  Two weeks on another continent spent not thinking about anything important other than “when are we going to eat lunch?” and “should I go for a swim or get a massage?” has left me somewhat ill-prepared for the heavier questions that I enjoyed ignoring for that time.  It’s a rude awakening to return and be faced with the problems that previously plagued you.  I’m back to thinking, ” man, I need to get some work” and “am I doing the right thing with my life?”

On the bright side,I’ve been able to pick up where I left off with all of my friends, spending a good deal of Sunday with the people I’ve been without for what seemed like an eternity.  And even with the sobering reality of return I can look at the calendar and say, “it’s 2009, a clean slate.” A new year with new possibilities and as cliched as this last sentence has been, a new outlook.  Feeling fine in 2009.  Well that’s not the official slogan.  The official slogan is “Wine Me, Dine Me, 2009 Me,” but that’s hard to say on a regular basis.

Posted in Travel, Unemployment, vacation | Leave a Comment »

Get A Haircut and Get A Real Job

Posted by evankessler on March 22, 2007

Over the past few weeks the pressure has been mounting for me to actually get a real job. I’ve been sending out resumés and applying to every job in the great big sea of financial security that seems even remotely interesting. Unfortunately, I’ve had very few nibbles on my line. My options seemed to be running out and I had begun to think about picking up my belongings and setting up shop somewhere else; Perhaps on another coast where the employment flows like wine. I’m not really sure what makes someone employable but if my recent history is of any indication, I do not have that certain something that makes someone want to utter the words…”you’ve got the job.”…Or at least that’s the way I felt until yesterday. Early Afternoon on Tuesday, my cell phone rang and displayed an unfamiliar 212 number. There was a slight hesitation on my part to answer straightaway, as lately I’ve been persistently pestered by certain charitable organizations hoping to obtain my services for unpaid labor. Now, I’m not stranger to working for peanuts but I’m looking for something I can hang my hat on or at least something that can provide me with a valuable experience. Luckily, at the other end of the line, was a person that might be able to provide me with such an experience. I’m not going to elaborate on the opportunity that was set up…but let’s just say that I have an interview set up for Thursday morning. Regardless of what happens…I feel the winds of change slowly blowing towards Brooklyn.

After receiving the encouraging phone call I headed over to Barnes & Noble with one mission in mind…buy a Fantasy Baseball Magazine. For the last several years I’ve been engaged in a futile struggle to finish in a respectable position in my Fantasy Baseball league. I always feel the need to arm myself with as much information as possible heading into the draft, though to be honest, I’m not really sure what good the information does. I barely read the magazine and basically use their mock draft as my guideline. I use the exact same order they picked. If someone is picked before I get to them then I just cross that player off. It’s not a scientific method but I also cross off players that I hate, which probably hurts my chances more. In any case, that’s why I went to the B&N and on my way there I resumed my iPodyssey with Yo La Tengo’s “Sometimes I Don’t Get You” which is another stellar track off of their latest album, I Am Not Afraid of You and I Will Beat Your Ass.

There was an excellent soundtrack for my walk to the bookstore as two of my favorite Karaoke songs bookended my absolute favorite Kathleen Edwards song. I felt like belting Dan Hill’s “Sometimes When We Touch”, Ms. Edwards’ “Somewhere Else”, and Linda Rondstadt and James Ingram’s “Somewhere Out There” at the top of my lungs while walking but I was afraid people would look at me funny. I was in a good mood though, so let them stare. Aside from my purchase of my 2007 Fantasy Baseball bible my trip to Barnes & Noble was uneventful. I arrived home to Galaxie 500’s “Sorry” and put my iPod to bed for a few minutes.

Quite pleased with the events of Tuesday early afternoon, I headed into Manhattan at around 5:2oPM to meet with my good friend Jaime to discuss life, love, the pursuit of happiness (not the Will Smith movie) and our impending High School reunion. It had probably been since around Thanksgiving when we saw each other last and we had much to catch up on. Jaime had been living the engaged life and she got a new dog and I had a lot of general life things to talk about. I hopped on the R train at Union St. in route to Manhattan while once again resuming the iPodyssey.

It took from Galaxie 500’s “Sorry” to Portishead’s “Sour Times” before Jaime was standing right in front of me at the Wachovia Building at South Ferry. From there we walked to South St. Seaport and sat on the deck as birds flew at our heads. We talked about work, life, travel, and what not…you know, the things we expected to talk about. However, it’s different talking to Jaime about things like that since she always has a lot to add and she does more than listen. She provides much needed insight. Part of me has always wondered why she never became a psychiatrist. She would certainly be very good at it….well, she already is.

After several minutes of dodging seagulls, Jaime and I headed for a Japanese restaurant somewhere downtown. I think it was called Ichiro. No word on weather or not it was owned by the Seattle Mariners hit machine of the same name. In any case, it was a pleasant meal and the audio from Jeopardy piping through the restaurant only enhanced the atmosphere. I was even compelled to answer “What are the Green Mountains?” once. Jaime and I went through the list of people we wanted to see for the high school reunion. She said it would be fun to see the “random people”. I for the life of me couldn’t figure out who those “random people” might be. Nonetheless, it was fun to try to name people from the past.

Jaime and I split from Ichiro just as Wheel of Fortune was coming on. I refuse to watch that show and I have no desire to listen to it either. We took a nice walk to the nearest 2,3 station and went our merry ways, I to Brooklyn, and Jaime to the Upper West Side. Upon arriving home at 8:30pm to the tune of The Verve’s “Space and Time” I decided to watch the Kevin Costner film 13 Days and call it a night.

I awoke at a reasonable hour this morning with full knowledge what I was going to write for Costner blog, so that was the thing weighing least heavily on my mind. After that post was done, I made a haircut appointment and readied myself for another Manhattan trip. Unfortunately, my iPod was still adapting to my computer since 10 minutes before it was time to leave my PowerBook uncharacteristically froze. Therefore, I had to make way for the East Village sans-iPod. It was either that or pull out my iPod connection early and risk erasing it again. That was not an option. Luckily I had a book to read. Marty had lent me Bill Bryson’s “A Short History of Nearly Everything” quite some time ago, so this seemed like a good time to get started on it.

I made it into Manhattan with about 30 minutes to kill prior to my haircut. I went to Kim’s on St. Marks and perused the CDs until I had 15 minutes left. I decided that with 15 minutes before my hair appointment I could sit at Hair Mates and do some reading before it was time to get the shampoo treatment. Boy was I wrong. Right as I walked in somebody took my coat to hang up and a girl escorted me to her shampoo station. They were looking to get ahead of schedule at Hair Mates Salon on St. Marks. Unfortunately, for the nth time in a row I didn’t get the erotic head massage during the shampoo…just a quick shampoo in rinse with no temple stimulation or neck kneading.

When I got to my normal hairstylist’s chair, she was working on someone else but walked away from her to trim my tresses. However, it seemed all business this time. Hair Mates was had turned into an efficient lock lopping operation. It was as if I was out the door as soon as they had invited me in…only I was several dollars poorer. That being said, I also had less hair and I looked better and certainly better groomed.

From Hair Mates I took a walk to the Strand Book store in search of more reading material. Sure, I just started reading a new book but I could finish this one any minute. Then what would I do? I ended up buying Sarah Vowell’s “Take The Cannoli” for only $4.95. I had previously read her book “Assassination Vacation” and absolutely loved it, so I figured it was time to read some more of her stuff. Fresh from my new purchase, I hopped on the Q train and made towards Park Slope, still reading my Bill Bryson book. While going over the bridge I noticed that my phone had some voice messages on it. They must’ve called while we were underground though since my phone did not ring once. As I finally reached my destination and could check my voice mail, I discovered that someone else wanted me in for an interview. The good news keeps getting gooder.

I returned home to my abode and heard my stomach growl. To satisfy the savage beast I prepared some flank steak and broccoli over brown rice. Mmmm…Mmmm…Mmmm. While this was being done I listened from The Verve’s “Space and Time” to David Bowie’s “Space Oddity” on the iPodyssey.

I didn’t give myself much time to let my meal settle as I soon headed over with iPod in hand to Buck’s Lodge where my friend Rachel was bartending. The walk there didn’t take as long as I thought it would and I only made it 9 songs from “Space Oddity” to Pavement’s “Speak, See, Remember”. While there we talked with some guy about Cleveland and I watched Syracuse lose to Clemson in the NIT Quarterfinals. Not really a big deal to lose in the NIT Quarterfinals since I don’t really think anyone wants to be playing in the NIT tournament anyway. At around 11pm I said goodnight and headed back home. This time I only burned through 6 songs from “Speak, See, Remember” to Wilco’s “Spiders (Kidsmoke)”. There was nothing left to do after getting home but watch the Colbert Report, South Park, and hit the sack. Big day tomorrow. There’s dressing up to do and people to impress. Also, I’m going to see Willie Nelson, Merle Haggard and Ray Price in concert with the brother. Should be fun. I’ll tell you all about it someday.

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The Continuing Story of Pub Quiz ( The Correct Answers)

Posted by evankessler on March 15, 2007

This here is the story of an above average Wednesday night in Brooklyn. Like all good stories there’s going to be some preamble and exposition before we get to the meaty part. When all is said and done, even if you aren’t sure you’ve heard the meatiest part, you can rest assured that you have.

Now what would a Wednesday be without a Tuesday. Odds are it would be a Tuesday. I wouldn’t be doin’ Wednesday any dang justice by neglecting to tell you just how this young sharpshooter spent his Tuesday. Legend has it that Evan Kessler spend his darn tootin’ Tuesday in the most darnedest way possible. He aimed his six shooter at a target about 2 miles away in Manhattan, trying hit the employment bullseye. Unfortunately, that bullet completely missed even the outermost target and ricocheted off a few buildings before settling all nice and quiet like on a sidestreet somewhere under a marquee. The best part about that is he didn’t even have to leave his Brooklyn Apartment. He was firing shots all over the place and while no targets were hit, nothing got damaged ‘cept for maybe the pride of this young sharpshooter.

Our hero figured to take a stroll and stop feelin’ so doggone down. As he strolled outside down the dusty path into town he had the sweet tune of Ryan Adams “She’s Lost Total Control” bouncing around his brain. He headed on to his local savings and loan to watch the money swirl around from his unemployment fund to his checking account. “Look at that there money go”, he exclaimed. Not once did it occur to him to knock the joint over. A job like that is best left to outlaws like Jesse James, William H. Bonney, or maybe even a Kris Kristofferson. After watchin’ all the money change hands it was time for our Mr. Kessler to pick up a copy of his local newspaper. Despite being confined to his solitary station in the world, our hero had a yearnin’ to know about the world around him. He’s worldly like that. I suppose that knowledge is something a man can be proud of. He returned home still sporting a song in his brain, only this time it was a different one. It was a bunch of Beastie Boys from around these parts spouting off some silly rhymes about how “She’s Crafty” or something or other.

Upon arriving home he took that paper and dang near read all of it. Though to be fair readin’ is just a generous term for scannin’. He kept the humming along to the music all the while. He finally put that intee-lec-shoo-al piece a paper down as a Matthew Sweet’s “Sick of Myself” echoed throughout the room. That pretty much did it for the day except for a trip to the general store and a good ol’ fashion hearty meal of Rice, Beans, and Chicken. The rest of the evening was spent settled down on the furniture and taking in some visual entertainment.

Our hero had to rise at the early hour of 9am this here Wednesday morning. Now, I know 9am ain’t very early for those who work on the farm, but to our hero that’s about as early as can be. Ain’t nobody ever cock-a-doodle doo’s round his parts before 10 in the AM, past month or so. I reckon something important must’ve been going on in order to rouse him from his slumber at such an unlikely. Turns out he had to go down to the Unemployment Office for some sort of o-ree-en-tay-shun. Now, I ain’t never had me no o-ree-en-tay-shun…but it don’t sound like too much fun.

As the story goes, this cowboy vacted his premises in order to make it to the o-ree-en-tay-shun at around 10:05am. He didn’t take no horse though. He mosied on down to 250 Schemerhorn St. on the 3rd floor. On his way, he shuffled several more songs through his consciousness. He took up where he left off with that ol’ Matthew Sweet song and rolled on through Travis’ “Side”, Ben Lee’s “Side View” and even two versions of Luna’s “Sideshow by the Seashore”. What could possess a man to enjoy the same song twice in a row? Don’t that beat all? There were other songs too but too numerous to mention all of them.

The time spent in that there unemployment office was quite uneventful and our protagonist had to wonder who it was helping. An elderly man read off job listings for positions at dining establishments that certainly did not appeal to most people present in that there room. Feeling as though it had been a great waste of time, Mr. Kessler reversed his mosey back towards his humble home. He returned home after a couple of songs about Silver and his brain rested on one particular Bob Dylan song entitled “Simple Twist of Fate” as he twisted his key in the door.

On the other end of the door our sharpshooter picked up his revolver and fired a few more shots at employment targets with similar results as he had seen the day before. Instead of sulking in his chagrin, he made for the door to the store filled with books. He restarted the previous tune in his head and made for the Barnes & Noble. That Barnes & Noble was certainly packed to the brim with readin’. I have to hand it to those guys. I don’t know who does more work, Barnes or Noble, but I give ’em all the credit in the world.

As our learned lovable loser scanned over the libros he noticed several titles in particular, aimed at dummies. Now, I don’t know ’bout you, but our man had to wonder how readin’ somethin’ for dummies was bound to make the reader feel. Especially on titles like “Depression For Dummies”. If a dummy can’t get over depression by readin’ “Depression for Dummies” ain’t that gonna make them more depressed? Sounds a little bit hinky if you ask me. After about 40 minutes of scanning the volumes of verbiage, Evan decided to high tail it home for some further periodical perusing. He picked up the times and arrived at his home to the tune of some Nada Surf singing about “Sleep” or something like that.

An hour after returning back home our Urban Cowboy made a move to better his physical standing by taking some time out to run on something called an “Elliptical”, and wouldn’t you know it he played songs into his head while doing that too. He went from hearing songs about “Sleep” all the way to one where some New Pornographers sang about a “Slow Descent Into Alcoholism”. I know what that’s like. That pretty much did it for the musical portion of the
day. Next up was the academic allotment.

At around 8:30 in the PM Evan headed out to a Black Sheep Pub for some rowdy times with the Pub Quiz Gang. The pub quiz gang consisted of Laura R, Laura B, Andrew, Mike H, Stephen H, Katie O, Maureen H, and Pete F. There were 9 folks on hand and there could only be as many as 4 on a team. The teams split up into threes and Evan was a member of “The Correct Answers” with Laura R and Stephen. The Correct Answers were quite the posse for being only three folks. They rustled up quite the score in the first half at the contest. The quiz master originally shortchanged them one point, but The Correct Answers set him straight. They weren’t playin’ no games…except Pub Quiz. Unfortunately, for The Correct Answers the questions got much more difficult in 2nd half. Despite their promising start the group had just about met their demise. When the scores were all added up there was a tie. Seems The Correct Answers were all knotted up with 2 other teams for 3rd place. There would be a tie breaker question to determine which team would hit pay dirt for that free round of beer given to the third place team.

The teams eagerly awaited their tiebreaker question. then it happened. The quizmaster asked, “How many species of Rodents are there?”. Evan wrote the number 38 on a napkin as a pure guess. Stephen wrote out 1200 and after several seconds of reasoning the team decided on Stephen’s answer. Upon handing it in the tension was so think you could cut it with a knife, albeit a butter knife, but that’s still a knife. It ain’t no Crocodile Dundee Knife but what is these days. You can’t carry that ’round these here parts.

Several seconds later the announcer said that the answer was “2000”. The Correct Answers had gotten the incorrect answer. However, there was still hope since it was all about who was closest. However, they would soon learn that they were not the closest and would not be getting a free beer. In fact, they came smack in the middle between the two other teams tied for 3rd place. That meant they were officially 4th place. There would be no pub quiz victory tonight…but Evan and his compadres vowed that they’d get revenge next time…and that they’d be more prepared.

So that’s it…That’s the entire story. I hope you didn’t miss the entire meat of the story…and if you did…well go back and find it.

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Where Does The Time Go?

Posted by evankessler on March 2, 2007

Where does the time go? It’s been several days since the last real update. The iPodyssey seems to be falling by the wayside as a post topic a little bit. This week has been somewhat of a social blur and to be honest, I have a bit of a headache tonight so this post is going to be everything short of remarkable.

In the unaccounted missing time we’ve leapt into the March and I’ve managed to plow through about 143 songs on my iPodyssey as we’ve gone from John Mellencamp’s “Pink Houses” to Pavement’s “Range Life”. That’s a remarkable amount of progress made in the midst of birthday celebrations, trips to Manhattan, nights out on the town and finally this past day which saw yet another unemployment brunch for the 2nd straight week in Jersey City.

Once again the crew of Anna M, Maureen H, and myself descended upon Starling’s apartment for a feast which this time consisted of pancakes, eggs, bacon, and Mimosas. However, instead of engaging in another 5 hour marathon game of Trivial pursuit, the lot of us played a new game. It seems Starling and a friend of his devised a game called Speed Scrabble in which no board or tileholders are used. It was actually quite genius and I look forward to teaching people this new way of the scrabble.

In any case, as I mentioned before, my head is pounding and instead of expanding on the last few days I shall lay my weary head down. Perhaps I’ll add some pictures at a later date but weh shall see. I need to sleep.

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My Social Networking Addiction and The Worst Dinner Ever

Posted by evankessler on March 2, 2006

Perhaps this title should be the other way around because that’s the order I’m going to discuss things in, but I suppose order isn’t always the most important element of telling a story, or maybe it is the most. You can look at a movie like Pulp Fiction and use either argument. Anyway, this isn’t Pulp Fiction it’s EvanKessler.com and I don’t think it will ever come to represent anything remotely similar to Pulp Fiction nor will it ever serve as a vital example in a semantic argument on the importance of sequence. So let’s get to it shall we.
A few weeks ago I was present at the worst dinner ever. It may have not been the worst dinner ever to the other three participants who will remain unnamed but if they read this, which I’m pretty sure they have not in the past several months or so, they will recognize the subjects to be themselves. The setting was an eatery near Union Square and consisted of myself, and three friends from the college years, whom were actually also present at a similar outing documented at a significantly earlier date on this blog.

The entire dinner conversation consisted on a soliloquy from each partaker on the relative perfect life that each was enjoying at the current juncture. Contestant number one expounded on her perfect relationship that would no doubt end in marriage. She spoke on the rewards and perils of her job but in the end seemed extremely pleased with the present state of her being. Contestant number two discussed his fantastic new job that he was excited for and his lengthy relationship with his wonderful girlfriend and contestant number 3 was less outwardly optimistic, not portraying a complete an utter sense of serenity but nonetheless generally pleased with her state of being. Then the floor, or I guess table was turned over to me and what did I have to talk about. Nothing. Now, I know I could be coming off as a bitter asshole who does not want his friends to be happy but that is not the case. I’m happy most of the time if people are happy. I just feel as though I was being ambushed by lameness due to the manner in which this discussion was handled. It was less a conversation and more people just taking turns trying to impress each other with fabulousness of their lives, some more willingly than others. It was as if we were all vying for a grand prize of $1 million for the person with best resume so we all just read off our resumes in succession only I had just graduated from high school and everyone else had been gainfully employed for the past 20 years and expected me to have something equal to show but instead I just had my measly 1280 on the SAT’s. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t have a problem with people being in relationships when I’m not, it just seems as though the majority of my friends in said relationships don’t feel the need to only talk about their relationships. They’re actually good at conversing on other topics and most of the time, do so, as they know it is not always of paramount interest to everyone at the table. Besides, it can only be interesting for so long.

Needless to say, by the time it was my turn at storytelling the contest pretty much came to a screeching halt and everyone felt the need to chime in about how to improve my life so I could have something more like they had as if I want to be exactly where they are. I’m not saying where they are is a bad place or a grand place, but at the same time I don’t view them as people who have it all. It seemed as if they completely lacked the ability to recognize that flaunting their own happiness to someone who is not in that place or didn’t really ask would be completely annoying. It wasn’t done with malice but it also wasn’t done with much tact or aplomb. It was like when you ask someone how they are and they start talking about something totally unrelated to impress you like “We just got the AT&T account and its going to be a really huge deal for the company.” Then you have to say something to compete only you don’t feel like competing because you want to have simple enjoyable conversation instead of a one-up fest.

So as the spotlight was unwillingly shot directly into my eyes, the glare was blinding and faced a barrage of, “Are you looking for work?” “Are you going on dates?” “Have you tried online dating? That’s how I met my boyfriend.” It was a deafening roar and made me feel like a complete charity case like I was still their friend but I was in a homeless shelter and they were serving the fucking soup. I almost felt humiliated but the funny thing was I knew it was coming so it lessened the blow. Through everyone else’s soliloquy I just kept thinking, “Is this going to be broken up in favor of normal conversation?” but with each subsequent, “now your turn” the moment seemed more inevitable. Their questions were returned by “I’m not really dating but that doesn’t mean I’m not trying” and “Of course I’m looking for jobs.” And with that I really had nothing else to say but there was still more to be said and it was unpleasant and bleak and just an overall awful gathering.

That being said, the whole, “I am trying” response brings us to my social networking addiction. Seeing as I’m basically home all day scanning the Internet for job opportunities there needs to be something to break up the monotony of the job hunt and since I don’t have the social outlet of a workplace like VH1 or anywhere for that matter, social networking fills a need.

First off, let me preface this by saying, I joined Match.com a couple of months ago because let’s face it, I wouldn’t mind meeting someone nice, hooking up or even getting laid once in a while and to be perfectly honest which I am nothing but on this here website (it is my own form of therapy), I’ve never actually had a real girlfriend. Cry me a river but I’m not asking for sympathy. I have dated a few women and don’t worry I’m not 100% pure and chaste but the longest relationship I’ve probably sustained has been a month or so. I’ve also probably ruined about 4 or 5 chances to have a relationship since I’ve lived in New York City. Anyway, I thought it would be good to get out there but I wasn’t exactly testing the market since I am nothing but skeptical about online dating. Especially, when you type in your criteria for the type of people you’re looking for and the people that come up do not seem to fit into any category you would ever want to explore. That being said, I have been met with equal amounts rejection as I am aware of my own imperfections (perhaps to a fault) and really only a total of 1 or 2 people have ever emailed me back on that site. I guess to the match.com clientele I’m not exactly ideal. It’s remarkable how many people think they will find the perfect tall, dark, handsome, and wealthy gentleman on there judging by their dating requirement on their profiles. It’s as if the definition for realism were replaced by the definition for fantasy in every dictionary they’ve ever read. For some reason that is okay by me because any website that features advice from Dr. Phil is not exactly my cup of tea and I’m not exactly sure I want to be involved with someone whose cup of tea it s. I’m very close to saying goodbye to that subscription. That’s a good amount of money that I’m not wasting each month.

Match.com failures aside I spend my non-job search time scouring Friendster and Myspace. I don’t look for dates or anything on there it just helps me feel I’m being social which kind of makes me feel lame but when you’re not around people all day it helps to feel you are socializing. I actually did get a date off of Friendster around Thanksgiving and it was awkward. Adam Starling and Betsy Van Stone can attest to the awkwardness. I’ve also been hit on since on Friendster but after a couple of back and forth messages they mysteriously stopped. Oh welll, onto Myspace. Myspace seems to get continuously more retarded by the day. I don’t really understand how it became cooler than Friendster. I think it might have something to do with technical problems or when they started the “Who’s Viewed Me” feature. I guess people valued their anonymity too much. I like Friendster because it seems ultimately more passive. If you want to write someone a funny testimonial or send an occasional message, that’s cool but it is not constant activity.

Myspace is this abyss of constant badgering. However, I am semi-addicted to it now. You can spy on people on Myspace without them knowing but you also have to deal with the crappy music or videos they put on their page, which can be quite the hindrance if you happen to have sound on your computer and the person you are checking out likes death metal, Aaron Carter, or Bow Wow. There are hordes of shirtless dudes showing off their abs and plenty of 16 year old retards misspelling words with Z’s and just generally using bad grammar while showing you how sexy they are and posting pictures of Chickens fucking pilgrims in your comment box. Don’t even get me started on the incessant posting of pointless surveys. So why am I still on this site? Well, let’s just say I’m not friendly with any shirtless people and if someone put an annoying comment I would promptly delete it. I also screen my friends and I don’t really try to find anyone on Myspace, for the most part I let people find me. I also won’t be friendly with anyone that has lots of shirtless friends though I make the occasional exception. It is all about selectivity, otherwise you’d be friends with about 700 terrible bands. I have befriended some unknowns who seem like they’d be interesting and cool to meet in person. Unfortunately, I don’t see that happening as I think the majority of those folks have skipped town as of recent. To sum up my Myspace experience, I have a set of guidelines regulating all of my Myspace relationships that keeps my addiction to it in order.

All of this social networking talk brings me to the newest of my addictions, Consumating.
Now, I was originally skeptical about this site because it got a lot of press in the New York Post and we know that by and large the only great thing about the Post is the sports section. I certainly don’t read the Post for it’s right wing point of view or for constant updates on Paris Hilton. After reading the article in the Post, I checked out the site and it’s more or less like a hipster dating site. The problem is I don’t consider myself a hipster and I don’t think real hipsters consider me to be a hipster. The fact is I don’t like to consider myself a part of any group as I’ve deemed it to be extremely limiting to confine ones self to one social strata. That being said, the people on this site are probably the most similar to my frame of mind but it does have its fair share of the too cool for school. What I like most about this particular site is its format. It doesn’t have the same stale dating personal information categories. It more or less just asks you to answer a weekly question, which affords you the opportunity to showcase your sense of humor and wit as well as list keywords that define you. That is much more my speed and seemingly less pressure than trying to impress people by saying what you do for fun or to write a little bit about yourself. In actuality I’ve never looked at any of these sights as hope for my dating life. I more or less like to type out funny things and engage in witty banter. I’ve always figured if I’m going to meet someone it’ll just be through a friend or it’ll just happen. Though, to go back to the worst dinner ever, that just made me feel like I should be pressuring myself, and that is just plain stupid. If anything that pressure just makes me feel less like myself and why would you want to date someone who likes you for not being yourself. You probably wouldn’t.

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Wining and Dining

Posted by evankessler on February 8, 2006


Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Wining and Dining
Current mood: indifferent
Category: Blogging

I’m not used to blogging in this myspace thing. I miss my evankessler.com crude microsoft word format. Despite my reluctance to blog on here, I suppose I will press on. It will only be a few days until I have my lovely Powerbook G4 back. I brought it into Tekserve yesterday to get it repaired since I dropped a shelf on it a few months ago and have been waiting for the perfect time to get it fixed. That perfect time was yesterday since I am going to Florida tomorrow for some family stuff and to get out of the city. I figured by the time I got back my laptop would be out of the shop and good as new again for the low, low repair cost of $355. Ouch! That hurt more than my trip to the dentist yesterday. Though my mouth was numb for about two hours after the dentist and when I tried to eat afterwards I couldn’t feel what pipe the food was going down, so it probably was a dumb thing to do. Anyway, despite being without my lovely mac, I miss ITunes more than anything. Luckily I can plug my Ipod into my stereo but it’s just not the same.

I feel like I should write a haiku about my computer. Here it goes:

Powerbook G 4

You are the light of my life

The light has gone dark.

That’s the best I could do on short notice. Anyway, aside from that yesterday was eventful for other reasons. I had a phone interview ith a career counselor (at 9am, damn!) for the 2nd time in 2 weeks, but its free so I’m taking advantage, I’m not really srue how much it is helping but its interesting to learn that my personality type could just as well be an accountant as much as creative writer. Seems a little fishy if you ask me. I’m not sure if I’m buying into it. I’m also not sure if it’s getting me any closer to figuring out what my career goal should be. Perhaps, I should write a novel or do somebody’s taxes and then I’ll have my answer. Not that I’m really trained for either of those.

Later on yesterday afternoon, say 4:30pm I received a call from the Adam Starling. He called to tell me that Betsy, Maureen, Anna, and himself were drinking wine at the Vintage Wine Bar on Broome St. After waiting for my landlord’s son to come by and take a look at our stove, I ventured out to meet them.

The Vintage wine bar is a wonderful place. You can sample wines for $1 a glass. For the next hour and a half or so the bunch of us sat there sampling various wines. I had 5 different samples. I think everyone did actually. Well actually Betsy had 17 but that was because she was there the longest and though that makes her sound like a drunken lush, I need to point out that 17 of these samplings is the equivalent of about 3 and a half glasses of wine, so it’s not really bad in the least.

Afterwards, Maureen, Betsy, Adam, and I headed to Milady’s where we were later met by Noelle for some dinner, drinks, and discussion. I think I was completely out of it at this point but all in all it was still an excellent time. It was better than my original plan for the day which was just going to the gym after coming back from the repair shop.

Okay, this is where this entry ends. Though I have to point something out. Marty said I should post my blogs on myspace or friendster so people could respond and participate more so than on my website but it hasn’t happened yet and I’m slightly skeptical that it will. I know it’s only been two days but so far, no dice.

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Doing My Duty.. Sort of

Posted by evankessler on January 20, 2006

Every once in awhile the men and women of this country receive a letter in the mail alerting them that their country needs them to fulfill their patriotic duty as citizens of this great nation of ours. I received this envelope several months ago, but was originally unable to provide my patriotic services due to my participation in “VH1’s R. Kelly Trapped in The Closet Chapters 6-8 Special.” My country still needed me. However, they’d just have to wait until the day after Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. My country patiently waited and when the time came I arrived at the U.S. Federal Court of Appeals (at least I think that’s what court it was, maybe it was just the district court) for Federal Jury duty at 8:30am on Tuesday January 17, 2006. I was initially nervous but somewhat anxious to take part in the judicial processes of United States in America. I might be personally responsible for the condemning and incarceration of a fellow American. My excitement soon gave way to boredom. After handing in my juror information sheet, I sat down on the aisle of the Constance Baker Motley Room at the courthouse waiting for my name to be called so I could be chosen to serve on a jury. I looked around the room thinking maybe I’ll be put on a jury with a cute girl. That might be worth the time served. There was nary a cute girl in sight. I think all cute girls have ways of avoiding the majority of societies pitfalls such as unemployment, jury duty, and maybe even death altogether. The minutes of sitting turned into hours as I delved further into reading the The Adventures of Kavalier and Clay. Three lists of 40 or so people were read off. None of these lists contained my name, but the people whose names were called out were jettisoned to courtrooms to be chosen to the fantasy world only read about in John Grisham novels, and I suppose other authors who write courtroom stories.

Soon it was noontime and an announcement was made that the court was breaking for lunch. This was not a normal lunch “hour” as we were given until 1:45pm to return to the courthouse. I wandered around looking for food and after about 20 minutes of trying to figure out where I should eat I settled on a pizza place near the courthouse. I sat and read some of the New York Post whilst eating my slice of Sicilian. I had way too much time to kill. After eating, I moseyed over to my brother’s apartment to water his plants and relieve myself in a clean environment. I still had 45 minutes so I took a long route back to the Courthouse. I still got back early which wasn’t so bad because I was just going to read when I got back anyway and that’s not the worst way to spend your day. Granted, there are plenty of things I would have rather done to pass an entire day. Anyway, so I did some more reading and when I got bored of that I moved onto crossword puzzles from AmNewYork and the New York Post. Just as I was about to go back to reading around 3:15 an announcement was made and a list of names was read off. Again my name was not on the list. Everyone on that list was told to leave for the day and come back tomorrow morning. Five minutes later another list of names was read aloud and quite expectedly my name was not announced. I began to wonder if they had lost my sheet and I was pointlessly occupying this room. Finally, at around 3:30pm another list was read and much to my surprise I heard my name. The instructions following the announcement of this list were to call a certain number the following day after 5pm to get further jury duty instructions and with that I was dismissed for Tuesday after nearly 7 hours in the same room. I walked back towards the subway and came across the bar, The Patriot, and for a moment pondered tying one on and by that I mean drinking a mid afternoon PBR. I decided against it as I may have felt pathetic midway through and also because there were some douchebag looking dudes outside.

When I arrived home there was a text message from Kristin E inviting me to join her and her roommate Jill at the People’s Improv Theatre for their friend Justin’s sketch comedy show. Seeing as I had no other plans I decided to join them. The show was at 9:30pm and I honestly don’t have that much to say about it. It was okay. I did not laugh that much, though I didn’t hate it, but I wasn’t really in love with it either. The stuff that was stupid just seemed really stupid and the stuff that worked did not overwhelm me with laughter. I’m not an expert on comedy but I think I like seeing improv more than sketch comedy. It seems a lot more rewarding because no one, not even necessarily the performers know what is going to happen. After the show, Jill, Kristin, and I grabbed a drink at Molly Wee’s though Kristin’s drink was strictly non-alcoholic, not that there’s anything wrong with that.

Wednesday was a day of activity as I headed out to Queens to Anna M’s apartment for the 2nd Unemployment Brunch in about 2 and a-half months. I arrived at around 1:15 and was the first to arrive. Apparently, I am always first to every friendly gathering I am invited to. I am way too punctual for my own good. Must…stop…being…so…predictable.

An hour later, Anna and I were joined by Maureen H, then Deb M, and finally by Adam Starling. Most of the talk was of a depressing nature how none of us could get jobs but alcohol, cinnamon rolls, and crumb cake lightened the mood as we all got a boost from the sugar we were ingesting. I was just about ready to crash when I left at around 5:45. I was pleasantly buzzed after many a glass of champagne. I went from Queens back to Manhattan to meet my roommate Ellen for her friend Cat’s short film showing at Anthology Film Archives. First I stopped at my apartment which surprisingly only took about 25 minutes to get back to from Queens. It was quite the shock. When I arrived home I called the number I was given to check my jury duty status. After a long unnecessary soliloquy the voice told me I was done with my jury duty. Half of me was excited, and the other half was disappointed that I didn’t get to see the judicial branch in action. Maybe next time. Fresh off of my stunning revelation, I high tailed it to 2nd and 2nd and met Ellen, who was with Michael, the guy she is seeing. I don’t like to give people titles when I’m not sure if they’re sure they’re ready for titles. Cat’s film was the first thing we saw and at first I just thought we were watching the opening credits for another short film and then realized she had made an 5 minute abstract short. I kept waiting for the actors to come on. That being said, it was a good little film. Afterwards, we sat through 2 documentaries, the first on a woman and her dog that she had a scary relationship with. I think it was acquired by HBO so maybe you’ll be able to see it on demand soon. The “dogamentary” was followed by a documentary on the Black Sabbath cover band Sabbra Cadabbra, which I kind of enjoyed. I never really understood the idea of wanting to be in a cover band and even though I still don’t really get it, I guess I get it a little more.

When the screenings ended, Ellen, Michael, and I went to Sweet & Vicious on Spring to meet up with and get a drink with Cat. We hung out for what seemed like a half hour or so and then went our separate ways. I called it a night at that point and went home to watch TV. It’s not like it was so early, it was 11 something when I got home and finally had some dinner after a day of eating only sugar.

I don’t have any stories about today, it was mostly disappointing job hunt stuff and a trip to the gym. Now I’m ready for the weekend. Anybody have something fun for me to do?

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Unemployment Part Deux

Posted by evankessler on October 18, 2005

After 22 days of Freelance employment, I’m back on the Funemployment bandwagon. Life is sweet once again. Today (Monday) was my last day of work on the VH1 R.Kelly video special and I can stay up as late as I want because tomorrow is not a school day. I almost forgot, today was a big day for other reasons. I woke up early and went downtown and waited for over 3 hours to get tickets to see a free Jeff Tweedy show in November. There were tickets for several shows being released. Amongst them were Jeff Tweedy (2 shows), Aimee Mann, Ryan Adams, Rickie Lee Jones, and a double bill with The Blind Boys of Alabama and Cat Power. The majority of people were on line to get Jeff Tweedy and/or Ryan Adams tickets. I was surrounded by some weird, paranoid, old, people who were overly talkative in an annoying sort of way. They all kept freaking out that the line was too long and we weren’t going to get tickets. I think a couple of them might have paid people to move further up in line to insure that they would get what they wanted. There was also a cute girl in a yankee hat standing next to me too but she wasn’t too talkative. She was reading a Stephen King book but warmed up a little bit later. I use that term warmed up loosely because she would just inject occasional answers to my questions. I think my chance for making a good impression on her was ruined early on in the wait when the old music nerds around kept saying annoying things baiting me into conversation, and I came off as one of them, absolutely destroying the chance at any positive impression. She said something along the lines of, “wow, you guys are serious fan,” in a half mocking/half amazed tone. Anyway, when I finally reached the front of the line at 12:40, there were still plenty of tickets left and all of those line-jumping weirdos really had nothing to worry about. The wait was worthwhile. Also, I had a chance to win my office pool tonight but the Colts gave up too many points. God damned Colts.

As for the rest of the week, I plan to have some meetings regarding the soap opera, go catch up on some movies, finish my book and go out for drinks. I can’t wait. Let Freedom Ring.

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Summer Is Dead. Long Live Summer!!!

Posted by evankessler on September 15, 2005

False alarm. Everybody calm down. I have not ascended into the ranks of the employed just yet. Take a deep breath and sigh in relief, the summer of love or apathy, or any combination of the two that results in a different word, continues. Just because my job prospects have slowed down doesn’t mean Evan Kessler (now kids, just because I’m referring to myself in the 3rd person doesn’t make it okay) has slowed down. No siree, I’ve had a regular onslaught of activity this week. Tuesday was the day I found out the job I was offered was no longer available after I called back too late, and it was also our last improv class. To be perfectly honest we were all pretty awful, though there were a few moments of inspired brilliance courtesy of John and Bryan from Staten Island. Afterwards we went out drinking as usual though it felt a little bittersweet, as it may be the last time we hang out as a group with beer. Though our show is Sunday so we’re sure to enjoy some form of celebration post haste.

Last night was fun as well (this paragraph could’ve had a better beginning). I was under the illusion that there was to be a large happy hour gathering at Kabin on 2nd Ave between 5th and 6th Sts. The first hour it was just Zerna and I, though I have to say it was quite enjoyable. Our group only grew to include three more people that evening. We were joined by Lauren Hlavenka, Zerna’s friend Zoey, and Andrea Palumbos. It was just the ladies an me. Isn’t it always? We had a couple of drinks at Kabin and then got a late dinner at Yaffa Café on St. Marks. It was a low key drinking night but definitely enjoyable. And so with that the Funemployment (TM Adam Starling 2005) train keeps rolling right along. Is there an end in sight? Perhaps, but until then I’ll continue to plant the seeds and metaphors for the upcoming season because when it rains it pours and maybe we’ll have a good harvest this year.

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Bureaucratic Ping Pong

Posted by evankessler on June 30, 2005

Today was completely retarded. I don’t mean to be insensitive to certain communities but if certain communities find themselves being offended by the word retarded than I’m sorry as that was not my intention. That being said, and I’ll say it again. Today was completely retarded. I was embroiled in a bureaucratic ping pong match between myself and the New York State Department of Labor. After my return from Las Vegas several weeks ago I had filed an unemployment insurance claim due to the fact that I’m currently lacking work. Unfortunately seeing as I was in Costa Rica for the majority of the past 2 weeks I’ve been unable to claim my benefits. In an attempt to set my benefits straight I dialed the phone number suggested on the New York State Department of Labor Website. Not only is this phone number impersonal but, it’s a maze of bureaucratic red tape and automated options. I must have typed into my keypad 15 different numbers before being given the option of speaking to a real live representative and when I finally got to that part after about 10 minutes of phone typing the message on the other end was something about “to talk to another person on this matter, call this other number”. However, when I followed their advice and called that other number, I’d be redirected towards the number I had just used. Talk about frustration.

I went back and forth with these two number selecting other options that I figured might give me quicker access to actual help with a heartbeat but to no avail. The closest I came on the first six calls was a message telling me to keep trying to call back every 15 to 20 minutes to maybe get a real person. Each subsequent call was met by a similar message until one time I finally broke through and you know what happened then? Give up? The person on the line put me through to an automated service to deal with my claim. Needless to say, the uncertain nature of my claim was not dealt with and I had to repeat the same process three more times including being bounced between the two phone numbers. I was in the midst of a nightmare. I was pretty much at the end of my rope when I finally broke through to a real person that actually talked me through the process and helped me out, but not without some automated assistance of course.

All in all, my ordeal probably took at least an hour and a half. An hour and a half where I could have been doing wonderful unemployed things like reading, or walking, or enjoying a nice ice cream cone outdoors. I’m making a call for all bureaucratic entities to steer away from automation and back to personal contact. Otherwise we’re all going to hell in a handbasket at the hands of automated help services. What’s next computerized 9-1-1 operators? I can hear it now, “If you’ve broken a bone press 1, If there is a fire press 2, if you have an intruder in your home press 3, and if you’re having a heart attack press 4, if you need automated CPR instructions press 9, all other inquiries please wait on the line for assistance. En espanol….”

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