Posts Tagged ‘Money’

This post will likely not make ANY sense.

Heck, it might not even be any good. 

My head is in a cloud.  Really, it’s cat brain, (more on that later), and though plenty topics presently flit through my mind as my deadline approacheth… (Not altogether dissimilar to a hapless flock of butterflies who’ve been sucked into a whirling vacuum, and a really big vacuum too, one which I’m also standing in but yet for some reason I’m not susceptible to the vortex — not like the poor butterflies, who look quite frightened, and rather dizzy… Anyway, I stand with my back against a wall, holding on to a giant strip of fly-paper, and trying direly to catch just one — just one idea-a-fly butterfly to pin-up for the blog — and I do even nab one on occasion, but over-and-over as their dainty little butterfly feet land briefly on the sticky-paper which I hold, the wind then violently tears at their wings and rips them away back into the chaos of the maelstrom, leaving me with the feet, or seed of an idea, but no actual butterfly… The poor things…) …I still can’t seem to choose a topic, and so, I got nothing.

(See, even my analogies are off! Screw it I’m changing the title!)

And now, a butterfly Egg. Why? Because I want to. Because I feel guilty for tearing off their feet. Because they're cool, the eggs. Because sometimes things don't have to make sense. Because... You know what? Don't worry about "the because's" -- I got this!

Think, you stupid brain, Think!” seems to be my only thought — but that won’t get me anywhere and I know it…

God, my head is throbbing… Stupid cats… but I shall write! Why? Because I have to! Because I made a promise to constantly enbetter myself and my skill as a writer by writing every week, despite the foreknowledge that not every week could possibly be my, “all-time-best-post!”. Because I, like so many bloggers before me, concede to the irrefutable fact that I will not always have the best idea, nor will I always stumble across the best inspiration in the world, for… inspiration (nor will I always have the largest variety of words at my disposal, evidently).

So here I am, stuck with only butterfly feet, and thus — this post will not make sense. It’s not meant to. This post is going to be pure bliss. All my wholly undeveloped ideas of the day, soft-boiled, runny, and served up luke-warm on the screen for all of you. You’re welcome?

I’m pretty sure that every blogger gets this way from time to time. All dressed up and no place to go. I generally post on Fridays, and (because that is today) this random agglomeration of tchotchkes and knicknacks will still serve y’all some buffalo wings today, just the same as the restaurant with the same namesake, like it does every week, whether or not it’s on the rag. And so, this post shall be a Non-Post-Post — and my humble homage to the oft’ unheard plight of the blogger — as, try as I might, (and like I said before) I still got nothing!

Though now that I think about it, I wonder if somehow this might be my topic… Perhaps this dervish of half-baked ideas, as a step-rung on the “tall-ass ladder leading toward success”, needs to be highlighted, because otherwise I’m pretty sure it’s completely neglected. Nobody likes to show weakness… Which might be a weird thing to cast in the spotlight, but it’s oddly fitting for me today… So, because of all this, here’s my story (and I’m sticking to it), of all the crackpot ideas I had thrown up on the drawing board, and how they almost came to be — but still just didn’t quite make it in the end.

Here instead is a shot of the drawing board itself, and the story of its inception.

Gee, now I don’t know where to start — Damn cats!

OK, I got it now.

Woh, fine, I default to you, Nelly.

The Grasshopper and the Ant.

This morning I left my house early — far earlier than I’d liked, and long before I’d had a chance to drain my beloved pot of home-brewed coffee. Tomorrow, actually, I’ll be doing the same thing.  Why you ask?  Well, you see… I’m broke.  And not even all the kings horses and men might mend me again unless I get a job.

It’s been a crazy couple months…

In the acting world one must always prepare for the winter, as things basically shut down from early December, pretty much straight on through to the end of February, and so, much like in the story of the grasshopper and the ant, which was one of the posts I was thinking about doing today, I had prepared — like a good little ant always should. I had set aside my three months rent, I was ready to weather the storm and do nothing but sip cocoa and do book edits until march, and I had done all the requisite work in prepping blog topics to be able to claim my Antdom all around — but yet today, as I walked from the subway toward the office which I was destined to interview at for this catering gig, I realized that it wouldn’t work. It would all merely be a lie. It had to be scrapped.

It’s my fault really. I joined my sister Union, “Aftra” late last year, at great expense to me, with the looming promise of making some serious money on a specific show — and I did so even though instinctually it had felt like a bad idea. Well — surprise! — the job fell through (as they often tend to do in this precarious line of work)! No others then presented themselves, and, basically, I wound up paying through the tooth for something that couldn’t possibly now benefit me until, theoretically, the start of March. Hurray! Though, as you might have heard, SAG (of which I am already a member), and Aftra, are now set to merge — after over 30 years of flirting with the idea — meaning that this money sink is now all for naught, as I would have been brought into the new hybrid union de-facto… and likely for free.

I knew I should have gone with my instincts.

Meh, what can you do?

You can’t write about being an Ant — that’s for sure!

I adore animals — I hate them

Dur...

So after leaving my interview, (and scrapping the Grasshopper and Ant Idea), I realized that I was in a neighborhood not to far away from that of a good friend, and so I contacted her, thinking that some good talk and some good coffee might brighten my spirits. Though I had forgotten all about her two cats…

Enter Le’ Darling de duo GATO!

My friend is an awesome person, and she truly did lift my spirits just like I thought she would. We had a lovely, long conversation at her place, about life, liberty, and the pursuit of more money, as we sipped on NY’s finest “Mud” Java, and I, as I adore animals, stroked her cat lovingly, subsequently playing “I Bop You On The Head With This Pen”. That is, all up until I had to get up because I had to sneeze about a bazillion times — which was just as odd as it sounds, but it hadn’t struck me as such at the time (I just figured it worked like an annual internal doctor, and I was just due for a visit from one of those)… So I came back inside, after my breezy retreat to the bathroom, to discover that my friend had taken to a business call — which was all well and good, and, as I had some work to attend to as well, I even joined into the distraction. We then both became busy, for about an hour or so, doing work stuff.

Throughout this time I kept taking breaks to pet and play with her kitties, and I soon began to fantasize about a blog which I might write when I got home having to do with the idea of pure animal love. I do, after all, love all animals, and I could easily chat about how we all could use a dose of their unwavering affections — Ah-Choo! Surely this would make a swell topic of interest — sniffle, sniffle — as I could go on for ages about how amazing they are — Ah-Choo! — and how much fun — Honnnkkk! (Me, blowing my nose) — and this could easialy be the topic of my interests for this friday — Ah-Choo!

Why in the hell do I keep sneezing!?

Turns out I’d caught an allergic reaction, and though I’m not always allergic, today I was suddenly HIGHLY ALLERGIC — so much so to the point that I am currently jotting this blog amidst a visible cloud around my head, and with four squares of toilet paper shoved up into each of my nostrils (that subsequently shoot out across the room like those old school water rockets every time I sneeze — which is often, and not nearly as much fun as the toy).  And so, “I adore Animals” was scrapped…

For if I had written it, it would have been renamed, “I despise all things with fur!”…

Which just wouldn’t be factual… (Speaking of which, I need to shave…)

(I told you, this weeks blog should/might not make sense — you really need to listen;-))

Have A Crappy Day

And so I went home — miserable. I thought about how I was finding it hard to talk through all the intermittent sniffles, and briefly considered a topic on, “The Inefficiency of Language” — But how could I blame this on English? Head throbbing as it was (And still is, Say Thank-Ya), I constantly was reminded of how crappy I’d felt, and realized that without bad days, good ones would a lot less exemplary, and thus I toyed with the idea of, “Have a Crappy day, it’s good for you”, but I really wasn’t having that crappy of a day if I were being honest… It was actually quite random, and filled with events — rather good all around — I would’ve had to have forced it…  I thought about, “I hate my body”, and how I could speak about the various design flaws of the human body (such as the precarious positioning of testicles…), but that just felt complicated and bitter, two things that would have been horrible to write on feeling as I was…

And then I came across this idea…

Why not just talk about this? The process? I mean it wasn’t quite so much an idea, as it was the lack there-of, but, for one reason or another, I fell for it. It seemed crazy, random, and honest — which basically typifies me — and that’s how I knew it was perfect.

As bloggers, or as anybody creative, there is always this pressure to create. We feel exalted when we get to express the refined product resulting from an awesome idea being married to some genuine inspiration, but the process itself, of trying daily — despite the ever-present fear of failure — is oft ignored.

So here you go, my good people.

Here is my process.

I like to think of it like this: What if it’s true, and there are only a finite number of good ideas out there in the world? Well if that’s true, then I invite you all to write a post about nothing, as inevitably you must come across it anyhow as one of the limiting number within your own private cache. Today I looked at it like the “Blank tile” in a game of Scrabble — it’s there for you to use when you’re in a jam, and this week I surely was. But even though in the beginning I thought that it might not make sense, I now beleive that, in the end, it did.

It inspired me for at least a half-dozen more topics to come, and it kept me working through this cat-haze of non-thoughts and butterfly feet.

It also taught me a lesson I’d once known all too well, but forgot long ago;

despite whether or not we are always truly inspired, we should work anyway.

As even by deploying the practice, regardless of the quality, we will, nonetheless, improve.

~J

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Good creative people, I am not a Chef, {Part Duex}

I’ve never been to cooking school, I do not own an over-sized floppy white hat, and I positively refute the idea that every ingredient must be uttered with the inflection of its native tongue (motz-eh-relehha cheese being my one exception… I am Italian after all). That being said, I do know a thing or two about being poor. Gourmand status notwithstanding, this state of mind has led to more penny counting, and improvised meals than I’d care to admit.

However, I’ve always believed that blogs are not the socially acceptable places for modesty. If some of my tactics for keeping my head above water can help out a few of you, far be it for me to hold out the goods. So today, good creative types, I’d like to open up my kitchen to you all, and share a few tips about how your own kitchen just might be able to help you weather the poverty storm (regardless of how long this confounded recession lasts).

You know it’s funny

Not really funny, funny — as in the knee slapping, milk and nose squirting, or that friend with the mildly annoying piggly laugh sort of way — but more so in the ironic sense of the term, “funny”, that I’ve never before reused a title, nor an opening paragraph (or in this case, 2), but for this series I decided that I would, because… well… because it’s a series — which needed some sort of common thread — and yet, here we are a full year later and it all still makes perfect sense!

Sadly right on down to that bit about the recession…

But with a little luck we can hope to be removing that unpleasantness by sometime next year…

(Right?)

Now, before we get started

Because this is, after all, a series (and the first one I’m involved with where I’m the STAR! Just wait till I tell Mom — she’ll be so proud!!), you might find it helpful to first read the original post before we move on, as it sets the tone and lays the framework which I hope to build upon here, (and, from the looks of it, henceforth around every January 20th) and you might find it helpful.

And now,

without further ado,

I’d like to give to you all today,

the gift of the almighty SALAD!

Do not be afraid of this Isle. This Isle is your friend.

(Well that was a crappy reception…)

(To say the least.)

(Alright, I’ll give you one more shot — I want to hear you CHEER!)

SALAD!!!

~~~~~~~~~~~~

(Nope, not going to work a second time either…)

😀

Look, I get it — Grumplepuss — you’re not a rabbit. Lettuce just isn’t your thing, and, well, I can dig that. I really can. But that’s not all I’m aiming to fix here. After all, this is a post for the poor. And the first thing that you’ll want to do if you’re in a rut — either mentally or monetarily — is elevate your mood. And nothing, I repeat, NOTHING, can accomplish this task as effectively nor as deliciously as a few raw plants from good ole’ mother nature.

This is about Vitamins. This is about Minerals. This is about overall wellbeing. For there might come a day where a window out of your rut will open up to you, but if you’re not mentally sharp or physically fit on that day you’ll miss your chance to escape the poverty prison altogether. And once you’re caught,  the Warden’s not gonna give you another spoon to dig with…

So I say, grab life by the cajhones, live on the edge, be Manly — and have a salad.

Your brain, your mood, and your shrinking pant size will all thank you.

Besides, and more to the point of the post — salads are cheap!

All this was bought for less than 12$, and fed me for a week!

Take a look at this picture, what do you see?

If only a bunch of “Yucky” green veggies, you’re missing the point.

Want to know what I see? I see reduced doctors visits. I see greater mental clarity. I see more energy. I see deliciousness (Just wait, it’s all about the dressing!). I see less frequent colds, and shorter durations when you catch them. I see health, wellbeing, and longevity — and also a FAR diminished chance of catching any major disease, such as, oh, gee, I don’t know…  cancer!

Plus less face it, if you’re poor, you can’t afford to be without any of the things listed above anyway…

So let’s get going!

What you’ll need:

~~~~ VEGGIES ~~~~

– Feel free to buy whatever you feel like, whatever’s calling out your name (Get Creative!), but what I have in the picture above I can vouch for, as it made the salad in the pictures below, and they are; (clockwise from 6′ Oclock) *Green Squash, *Jalapenos, *Spanish Onion, *Garlic, *Red Onion, *Red Leaf Lettuce, *Mushrooms, *Salad Tomatoes, *Limes and *Kirby Cucumbers. (*Note at least 2 Limes, 1 garlic clove, and 1 tomato are essential*)

~~~~ A KNIFE ~~~~

– No, not that piddly little butter-knife from your Draw. That’s not a knife… I mean a KNIFE — And a long, sharp one at that. The longer the better, as it will help you slice and dice that green-gang (not to be mistaken with gangrene) hastily into submission.

~~~~ TWO CONTAINERS ~~~~

– A-One for the money, A-Two for the show, A-Three to get ready, NOW GO… Er, um — no, that’s not right… One BIG BOWL, for the fixin’s, and one lil’ Bowl’ieta for the dressing. Which you’re going to make yourself. (don’t fret — I got you 😉 )

~~~~ ONE CUTTING BOARD ~~~~

– Not really much to say about this one. Pretty self-explanatory that. I do happen to prefer the plastic flexible type, but really ANY will suffice, heck I don’t care if you cut on your counter, but I better not get any calls about me getting sued cause you’re some slob who caught salmonella, off my recommendation and some maggot infested unsuitable surface! You know what, scratch that — sue me. I’m poor, so there’s not really much to take, and I figure a courthouse might proffer a nice change of scenery.

😉

And, well — that’s it, that’s what I’m looking for!

Now then, here we go!

Clean and chop

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

One of the more beautiful aspects of serving a salad is that you really can’t mess it up. There’s no timing involved, there’s no cooking, barely any seasoning — really, all you’re responsible for is cleaning up and slicing down your raw and healthy goodness into submission. At first this process might take you a good twenty minutes, but never fear, after around four or five rounds of making them (or if you grab a hubby, wife or a child to help share in the fun chore), the meal can easily be concocted in 5 minutes flat.

I don’t mean to brag, but my best time’s around a, 4.23 — I know, I’m kinda a big deal…

Now, the first thing you’re going to want to do is strip off about five leaves of lettuce from your bunch. PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE WASH THEM, (along with everything else), as oftentimes produce isn’t kept in the most sanitary of conditions before you kidnap them and take them home (It puts the dressing on its skin!). Once washed, stack atop each other, and cut into ribbons, as depicted below. There are other methods to cutting leaves, but i find that this style really holds on to the dressing well and helps your fork to easily latch on — while still fitting inside your mouth with ease and not making it feel as if your stuffing a live squid with flailing tentacles into your mouth.

I know you know what I’m talking about 😉

$15 bucks for a little biddy thing that I wind up wearing on my face!

No thank you!

About 1/4 inch strips

Drop this in the big bowl

Now comes the rest of your veg!

Today I’d used skinned mature Carrots (as opposed to baby – duh!),

What's up doc?

Mushrooms,

Dont worry about him, he's a fun-guy

Green Squash,

Judo CHOP!

 Red Onion,

No joke on this one, just a warning... Red onions have a kick! I like this. You however, might not.

And Cucumber.

Please resist the temptation to wear these on your eyes. Save that for another bloggers post...

Please take note of the way I curl my fingers AWAY from where the blade will be. In this way I cannot possibly cut myself, and can still use my fingers to “Squeeze” the veggies in place — leading to safety, level and even cutting, and the ability for me to still count to ten.

All glory to the Hypnotoad Dressing!

(Wow, wayyyy too much java this morning… but what can I say — It’s my favorite part!)

Store bought dressings might claim to be home-style, but they might as well call themselves homely — as there’s nothing comforting or attractive about the ingredient list on most of em’.

DITCH EM’

Instead, make your own!

Traditionally homemade vinaigrettes are a citrus (acid), some oil, some mustard, a pinch of salt and sugar, and a whisk — but how blase. The way I look at it, if we’re clever, we can infuse the remaining ingredients with a powerful punch, and add to the flavor of our entire meal at once. Plus its super easy!!!

Step 1: Halve, and then dice your tomato,

Dig in first with the tip of your blade, as the skin can be slick and hard to cut

Then drop it in the lil’ Bowl’ieta

Also at this point add a bit of salt, as it will help to draw out the oil in the tomato, I.E: the flavor

Next, do the same to your garlic and your Jalapeno

(DE-SEED IT, or REGRET IT!)

Jose' Jalapeno, sans stick

And now, time to prevent Scurvy!

The Lime

The best way to juice a lime is not what you might think. I picked up this little gem from Cooks Illustrated a few years back, and it’s DOUBLED the juice I’ve gotten from these delightful little fruits ever since.

First, cut into a square…

(I’m serious — look for yourself!)

That's one... now the other 3...

Keep going…

There ya go, Sparky!

Next, squeeze all 8 walls (yes, 8 — that’s four sides, times two limes, Archimedes…) into the Bowl’ieta atop the veg already in there, and then slice the bulk of lime into two halves, right down the middle, and squeeze that bad-boy in there as well.

(They put the lime in the coke-you-nut…)

Don't worry about squeezing too hard, Limes are known sadists -- they enjoy the pain.

Finally add to this about a teaspoon of sugar, a healthy pinch of salt, a teaspoon of mustard (optional), and about 1/4 cup of oil — though all of this is to taste! Lately I have used no mustard at all because it’s just plain ole’ kick ass on its own.

Then,

after mixing with a fork,

as counterintuitive as this might sound,

nuke it for 30 seconds.

🙂

This will help all the flavors and the oils intermingle, and will truly create a unique dressing full of health and wellbeing.

(~~~~ Sidenote ~~~~)

* For Carnivores *

As of this point everything we’ve done is vegan, though I am, much as you are, decidedly NOT a rabbit — so here’s a tip. Fry up some Bacon — that’s right, I said fry up some mother F-ing Bacon — and when it’s deliciously crispy, crumble it into oblivion. Take 1/2 and add it to the Bowl’ieta before nuking, and suddenly your dressing is infused with magical baconey goodness!!! The other half can be crumbled atop your culinary masterpiece, and coupled with blue cheese — if that’s your type of schinding (I know it’s mine). I also like to fry pasta crispy and add it in, or even chicken or egg salad as well. It’s all about keeping EVERYONE HAPPY, and 4 OZ of bacon across two people never hurt no one — I’m Juss Sayin’!

OK, once All that’s done

~~~~~~~~~~~~

You’re done.

Now, this is important. Before you eat: Go find another family member, or walk down the block to find a neighbor, or drive over to a buddy’s place, or fly out of state to visit a dear old friend — and ask for a pat on the back.

Have them then whisper softly into your ear, “Good Job” — and then get back home cause it’s time to eat!

If all’s gone according to plan, things should look something like this!

Kapow! And then THIS!!!

Then, that’s it — you’re done.

Poor or not, you are now in possession of something that anyone would desire: just about every vitamin in the alphabet, essential oils, handmade (pride inducing) dressing, and a meal that could (and should!), easily serve two of ya.

All sliding in at a plate cost of around $.75 per person!!!

Now, never again do I want to hear you, or anyone in your Fan-Damily, claim that, “they don’t eat anything green”, or, “salads are yucky”, or, “I don’t eat rabbit food”!

Wait. Scratch that. More for you.

Screw it, let them eat cake

~J

Hey there fellow Nutcases;

Genius and Insane time-travelers alike — traveling inexorably from the past to the future!

😉

Welcome back to the blog for the Deranged and Enlightened

A heads up:  Today we’re going to focus more-so on the Deranged and Insane’ie side of things, rather than the Enlightened, and Genius’ey side, (sorry you two, better luck next week…), as we attempt what some might tout as impossible — to delve deep into the mind, of a Psychopath.

🙂    So if that’s not your cup of tea, (but you keep reading anyhow), don’t say I didn’t warn you    🙂

😉

Now then,

The term itself, “Psychopath” is used loosely in society (all willie-nillie like), and is one that I’m sure you’ve heard often. Generally speaking we’re rather adept at identifying and steering clear of these societal parasites, because more often than not they stick out like Giant Horse-fly’s atop a freshly baked Coconut Creme Custard Pie.

(WTF? I have no idea where I got that analogy…)

Perhaps you’ll encounter them as they’re cutting you off in traffic — honking wildly and flipping you off, as if you’d been the one who’d made the mistake; or maybe you might stumble across a few while they’re throwing punches and starting an unruly mosh pit at your favorite concert — yet, you went to see Taylor Swift; you might even notice them at the edge of a child’s playground, watching furtively from the hatch of their big white van — waiting for just the right moment to offer some candy to a hapless little girl.

Yes indeed, each of these individuals would be marvelous human-meat potential nominees for candidacy to the heralded position of Psychopath, but today I’d like to make you all aware of the fact that most insidious Psychopath’s of all are not quite that easy to identify. The people I’m talking about have taken this “disorder” to new heights, as they are not easily spotted Grade “A” A-Holes, Ahem… Jerks, but rather; Charismatic, Intelligent, Witty, Wealthy, Affable and productive members of society — the ideal double agent.

Agent 00-Mittens here, I'm headed back to HQ. Make sure that the litter is clean and my milk-bowl is full upon my return -- shaken not stirred. Thanks, Money-Fuzzy.

So, how can you hope to ever know who you’re dealing with than?

How do you know who’s a Psychopath and who’s not?

Well… How about a definition?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Psychopathy: A personality disorder characterized primarily by a lack of empathy and remorse, shallow emotions, egocentricity, and deception.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

So there it is, and upon further examination I think that the whole lot can be summed up in merely three words of all its original prime constituents,

“A Lack of Empathy”

So now, Have you ever met someone like this?

I know I have…

STORY TIME!

That’s right kiddies! Grab your lunchables and your juice-boxes and meet me under that big ole’ colorful tarp, it’s Story Time.  I don’t think I’ve ever shared with you all the story of how I (barely) made it here to NYC…  Now this won’t be the whole story mind you, as it would be wholly off topic and wasteful of your precious little time — I’d hate to take you away from finger-painting those god-awful hand-turkeys you love SO much — but there is a relevant bit I would like to share, so here’s an excerpt…

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

When I was younger — as in, finishing up high-school with a Eminem’esque blonde streak running through my hair; and as in, I hadn’t yet required an entire pot of coffee to be half-way lucid, younger — I didn’t exactly have the most stellar driving record. It was bad luck really, I had 3 — COUNT EM 3! — Zero fault accidents, (meaning they were decidedly NOT MY FAULT), but still, given my insurance providers three strikes and you’re out policy (why people make policy based on baseball euphemisms I’ll never understand…) the costs of my insurance went through the roof! Like over 8-grand a year… OUCH!

Anyway, tuck that in the back of your mind

That's right... tuck it back there... deeeepppp back there...

So as you might expect this necessitated that I begin working at a young age, but working just one job wasn’t enough — oh no — I often had to keep up two, sometimes even three or more just to keep my chin up.

Fast forward now to the end of high school,

Where, unlike my peers, I had no idea what I’d wanted to do with my life. So, rather than going to some perfectly matched College that I had been courting for years, I instead went to the default local Community College, one coined as “13th grade” by my Ex-Classmates — and one which I didn’t take seriously for a second… I laughed, I cried, I partied (like it was 1999), I had a profitable relationship with a smokable product — and I nearly flunked out. I was subsequently warned by my parents that if didn’t straighten out that they would cut me off just as easily as Jacko did his nose, Yikes.

Being faced with the prospect of paying for school myself, I began a spiritual’esque journey to discover who I was — and soon found my love of Acting and the stage. I then spent the next two semesters cleaning up the mess I’d made, I.E. the 1.2 GPA, and working toward an Associates in acting — so that I could, hopefully after College, move west to NYC and begin my brand new life as Brad Pitt’s protegé. (What? A man can dream can’t he?)

I finally had a direction after all that mess,

I finally had a purpose to my life!

But I still had a big problem…

My car and all it’s costs were crippling me…

Here I found myself in a delicate situation. I needed to save money to move to NYC, my goal was $10,000, but I had those crazy high bills to pay — plus gas, going out (a tween requisite), food, other car expenses (The damn lemon kept having problems…) — not to mention everything else life had been throwing at me, too innumerous to mention! So, even though I finally had something in life which I cared about, and was willing to pursue at any cost, how in the hell could I ever do it?

It was then that I’d made a bold decision…

I sold the car, and took up riding a bicycle — and did it for 2 whole years to save up cash

NOTE: Drunken biking “Party hopping” across multiple towns is NOT advisable…

(but is occasionally rather fun, and always somewhat wavy)

Anyway, it was a hell of a sacrifice at that age for me, but I finally hit my marker of Ten Grand, and was now, finally, poised to move to the BIG city!

Right?

Right!

But what the heck did I know about life as an actor? Sure I’d been through a lot to earn that cash, but without a proper direction I would be going nowhere… I knew I needed to audition to land a gig — TV had taught me that — but a quick web search taught me that I first needed an Agent, who would then allot me the privilege of meeting a Casting Director; the ones who were actually auditioning people. So… I began looking up Agencies, thinking that this than must be the key to it all — and I quickly learned that none would take me on without a resume…

So, let me get this straight:

I need Credits to get Credits? But I can’t get Credits without Credits. And to have any, I needed to see a Casting Director, and I couldn’t meet with one of those without an Agent, and I wouldn’t be able to court an Agent without credits?

(And round, and round it goes…)

Well if that’s true, how do I EVER get credit numero Uno!?

Enter Agent X; the Psychopath

Well he looked trustworthy to me...

I found “Agent X” in a brief ad at the back of my local newspaper. Serendipitous I thought, as I never read much of anything at all back then — what were the odds? I had a few head-shots to show (thanks Mom), and, having sent over a few, and having harassed his secretary daily about if she’d received them, he soon agreed to meet with me!

Sweet right? (Just wait…) I was driven to his office, super excited for the meeting. I went inside. I sat down.

And the meeting began.

He started brusquely, claiming that, “his time was brief” as he had some important, “something-or-other” to attend to — typical fare for a Hollywood type I figured — so he started then firing off the bulleted information low-down in rapid succession. Something like this, (*Note* MUST be read with a Dick Tracy mobster accent),

“I’ve got connections, kid, see? Connections you need. Now, if you want my endorsement, you’ll join my website, see? I’m only giving you this opportunity cause I like ya, kid, see? Ya got the look, ya got the moxie, ya got a spark to ya. A spark I want, see? Now you do what you will, but remember, you’ll only get this one shot to see me, see? I only see potential clients once a year — Let me repeat that, kid, you look sorta-slow, see? ONCE A YEAR! And I cant guarantee I’ll see you next year either, been thinkin about Acapulco, see? Heard it’s nice this time of year. So, yea, that’s the deal…  see? Now the cost to join my upstanding operation here is non-negotiable, see? $2,600 smackers, (at which point I’d swallowed my gum in shock…), now, if you’re in, sign on the X here, and here, and here, initial here, draw a picture of a unicorn here, write down the name you’ve picked for your first-born here, and….. — that’s it, kid, we’re good! See? Now that’s the ticket, kid, you’re in. Now you’ve got it!”

Oh I got it alright…

I got it good…

Sure it had felt a little fishy, but I wasn’t worried — so far as I knew, I was more than covered by the fact that I’d paid in plastic. I had always heard that, regardless of the amount of times I’d signed my name, my credit card would back me up unwaveringly, so long as I cancelled the transaction within 48-hours — plus this guy seemed legit, I always imagined the industry to be full of movers and shakers like him, and if this is what I wanted from life, than I’d have to get used to it.

So I thought, “what the hay?”, and I signed, signed, signed, initialed, unicorned, and wrote the damn name, See?

What did I have to lose, right?

Wrong…

When I got home I immediately went to his site — super stoked to see what I’d bought — (which I couldn’t have looked at ahead of time as you needed an, “Industry” password to access it), and when I finally got there I realized — that it Suuuucked! I mean it sucked super Hardcore. Like one of those newfangled Dysons, sucked!

I IMMEDIATELY called my card to cancel the order, and they said that they saw the transaction, but couldn’t do anything about it unless I first tried to settle the issue with the merchant, as they were in business with him as well… Wonderful!.. So I called the merchant, Mr.X, and got the receptionist instead. “He’s out”, she said, “He’ll be back later”, she said, “Click” the phone said… Sigh.

And I did, I tried again…

And again, and again… And again — still no answer.

I seemed now to remember noticing a caller ID on her desk, and thinking it Odd that there was a handwritten list of names next to it…

I tried again… No answer.

I tried again… No answer…

Finally I called back my card, and they said they would put my dispute of the contract on file, and see what they could do. In the end though, it turned out that the contract was impregnable. Ironclad. Jotted on paper made of human flesh, written in a burnt script, and drawn with the tip of a trident that had been heated by the fires of Hades itself — for all I knew, this Mr.X person might have even been Satan himself (I couldn’t see under his desk to spy for his cloven hooves…).

But that was that.

I had worked hard for my money, arguably all through college and for two years on a bicycle, and what had it gotten me?

Boned.

This lovely metal chap was part of Mr.X's entorague

Meanwhile there was this Prick, Jerk, who had done nothing at all for me and had cheated his way through life, and what had it gotten him?

$2,600 smackers…

It was then that I knew that I had joined in a long, proud legacy of prestigious actors that had come before me,

I had been scammed.

And now had barely enough cash left to have a proper beginning to my life’s journey…

Think about it: Start with $10,000, subtract $1,200 monthly rent, plus last month: $1,200, plus security: $1,200, plus moving costs $300, plus this A-Hole Jerk and his scam, $2,600 — and all I was left with was: $3,500. And let me tell you, in a strange city; one month of acclimation is not the same as four. I was screwed. I had met an emotionless monster, and me, being who I was (and sadly no longer am) trusted him — which is precisely what had given him his power. This man had no remorse what-so-ever for what he had done, and, even though I called them EVERY DAY to destroy the contract, there was no simply way out.

1:100

Today, the number of psychopaths among us is growing faster than ever, and it currently stands at 1:100. One out of every hundred children born, now comes to existence without remorse. That is, if you accept that this is a disease…

In fact, it is not a disease.

It’s evolution

Evolutionary Biologists call it “Frequency Dependence” — basically, the rarer the trait, the more it pays off.

So in a society of trusting people, having one in a hundred psychos around is greatly beneficial to them, as they can scam and often not get caught.

In the past, when people’s psychopathic tendencies effected the whole of the group, we kicked their asses to the curb — Post Haste! — and then they starved because they relied on us! With negative social ramifications in place to defend us from being preyed upon by these psychopaths, not many could exist because it was a very poor lifestyle choice. These days though, people aren’t lumped into one big category — you know, like “PEOPLE” — there’s bankers, and cops, and TSA agents, and Politicians, and Executives, and Board members… and NONE OF THEM have to deal with negative societal ramifications for being emotionless. They’re emotionally isolated within their own groups… They support one another…

Nobody is, “Kicking them out”, nobody is even, “Chastising them“, nope — Instead, they thrive!

They’re praised even!

Today, we’re all lumped into isolated bubbles: Upper, middle, and lower class, and each finds it hard to associate or empathize with the other.

This needs to stop, but it’s the only protection that we have, particularly when success if marked by the highest stack of paper…

And it’s all thanks to Capitalism!

(Yay!…)

We all watched our parents struggle while growing up — some took shortcuts, and some lived on the straight and narrow. I happened to be born as a prodiginy to a straight and narrow type, but I knew plenty of the other type, as I’m sure you did as well. When you watch your parents be monetarily rewarded for cheating others, and when you watch them seemingly show no remorse for their behavior, the kin of that individual has less empathy than their parents, because that’s just the way the developing mind works as it’s forging the many truths which will make up the whole of that individual.

The really crazy part about all this comes to light when we think about what happens to these cheaters, who are really empathy-less Psychos — it’s not all that bad. Sure they’re fired (sometimes), and they get a slap on the wrist, but oftentimes they’ve done such a good job of tucking money in mason jars, under pillows, and in offshore accounts — not to mention the money they earn with the stolen cash before they’re caught — that their families become RICH as a result, or at the very least famous…

Whereas once we literally had given someone a death sentence for this behavior — today we reward them!

And it’s all only possible because of what money does.

My scammer saw a need in society and pretended to fill it, and he got rich for the effort.

He never got caught, he’s not in jail, and he scammed hundreds!

I, on the other hand, am broke.

I worked my ass off = Nothing (yet).

He Cheated = Win.

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Psychopathy and Capitalism: An atypical Love story without a happy ending…

Not coming soon, but already here!

And Playing in neighborhoods everywhere…

~J

Once again — no hesitation — here we go!

“Patriotism is supporting your country all the time, and your government when it deserves it.” ~ Mark Twain

In honor of this — here’s ten reasons why our Government doesn’t deserve our support lately 😉

(Sidenote: WE BEAT SOPA TODAY!!!!! Now, help keep it that way.)

~~~~~ This Final Post is in 3 Parts — here’s part-1 to get you properly started! ~~~~~

Here’s my Top Ten — cause who doesn’t like a good list 😉 !?

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Remember; Of the people, by the people, and for the people — makes no mention of government or business…

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1- Overturn corporate personhood, or “Citizens United” ruling: Why should corporations be granted the same rights of a citizen under the 1st amendment? This is the Bill of Rights, it’s for people — not businesses! Do I really need to list the differences? Also, in the meantime, how about we force our elected officials to wear a sewn on brand name logo for each of their sponsors — just like NASCAR drivers — so that we really know who’s pulling their strings!

2- Overturn Buckley VS Valeo: Money is not speech. Because if it were, those with it could talk, while those without — like myself — become mute. It’s an insane loophole, and wholly nonsensical.

3- Stop allowing patents that limit invention: Company’s are currently allowed to make faulty products, and control their competition, through buying up patents that would allow competitors to gain a leg up, and/or invent something that would do the job better. This is insane! How can we allow a patent to be placed on a product, so that it WONT be built!? This is backwards logic! With the goal of creation held above all else, this is completely against progress! Ideas should be free — take any of mine if you wish, I offer them freely — as only the best end product should rule the day. Heck, I have half a mind to outlaw patents all together, due to their ability to stop others from using an invention to create something better for us all. Perhaps a residual scale would be more prudent, like in my acting world, as a way to better promote innovation, and acknowledge inventors, than disallowing use of their invention altogether.

4- Congressional seats cost Millions to run for, Presidential races — Billions: NO!, no wayyyy! You want to call yourself a Democracy America, and you want to spread this “pure and perfect philosophy” of yours around the world, yet this can happen? We better perfect this method at home first, before we go spreading it around the Globe. What if I wanted to run? How could I possibly finance my way there? Beg borrow and steal, and owe allegiances to those 400 people mentioned before? No thank you! Limit the amount that can be spent, to — oh i don’t know — nothing… Nothing but what you can prove comes from your own pocket? How awesome to see You-Tube videos of the possible nominees…

5- Abolish the 2 party system: As I’ve mentioned before, uniting under a banner prevents organic thought. It’s like the Yankees VS the Mets, but this isn’t sports! Nobody agrees with EVERYTHING that either party stands for, and if they do, than they aren’t thinking hard enough, nor for themselves — nor divergently, which is the most important of all. I suggest that we disallow candidates from announcing their party whatsoever, and make the people vote not on individuals — but issues. The person who is most aligned with the answers to this, “Voting test”  that people will take, on current issues around the world, will in turn place a vote in the name of the candidate who is most closely aligned with your beliefs. However… if we can’t abolish it, lets add to it! — If we can’t remove the two-party system, I suggest a new party — “The Intellectual party”; who will make smart and just decisions that have only the people’s needs at heart.

6- Balance the budget: Look, a government should not be able to live beyond its means — just like a person. We can’t get credit lines when we don’t pay our bills, and a nation should be no different in this regard — particularly when we, the people, foot the bill. We need to pay off our national debts, and eliminate the FED and this debt-built system once and for all! Let’s get, “in the green” again. How? Make a new currency that we own, that is OURS, “The Peoples Paper” perhaps, whatever, and make it more valuable than the old Federal Reserve Notes, and then — simply pay them off! Thank you — please (don’t) come again!

7- No more hiding the truth: No more lies, no more clandestine plans, no more making decisions without our consent. Everything we do needs to be made public. We need to be able to know, quickly and coherently (and without lawyer babble), what’s going on with us as a nation, and why we are doing the things that we do. And, if we don’t agree, we should have the right to a public veto which could even overrule the president/monarch him/herself! All this should be a part of the new Data.gov proposed governmental website!

8- Limit insane lawsuits, a type of tort reform: People these days are being rewarded for not thinking and acting the fool. If you cut yourself while breaking into a building to rob the joint, how is it OK that you can then sue the business? How about a, “Common-Sense Law”! Also, much like our friends across the pond, the person who’d dragged everyone away from their jobs to sit on a jury, for this BS case, so that they could try this ridiculous money-making scheme (which will surely pervert the bill of rights to their greedy whim), should have to pay everyone present for their time — after being kicked out! The Judge, the lawyers, the jury, the bailiff — EVERYONE! We’ll see if that wont make people think twice about this type of malarkey!

9- Legalize it: Legalize all drugs. Seriously. We’re still consuming them, people get them when they want them, and by having them be Illegal, A) we’re forcing people who want them, perhaps for just an experiment, to become part of a criminal syndicate to do so, AND, B) We’re causing a war in Mexico, as the cartel has come about as a direct result of our undying need for all things illegal and druggy. I hate to sound callous, but choosing your own destiny is an inherent right of a truly free and sovereign people, and if an adult chooses to live his/her life in the dregs, just for that next hit — well, than, I’m sorry… but that’s their prerogative. If everyone’s truly equal, than we can’t assume ourselves “Better qualified” to tell others how to lead their lives. If they die, they die, and it was meant to be… However, I have a feeling that family and community will take personal interest in these lost souls — especially when there isn’t a criminal factor involved — and with the right support, and the right conditions in the world, these people wont want to live life this way at all.

10- Stop bailing out businesses with our money, abolish wall street: It’s legalized gambling… with our money… and it’s unessential! How is it OK to have enough of our money tied up in this, that it can affect our very economic strength/stability — when these people are merely placing bets on how a Company will do within the next few seconds? Do all the research you want, it’s a guess. And research has proven that outside factors can influence these people on “The Floor”, which can alter their practices, and cause them to influence markets around the world. It’s too much power to be placed in a silly gambling hall.

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NO -- I will not Pay! (OK maybe I will, I don't like prison. Bullies.....)

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These changes are a start, but let’s remember our ULTIMATE GOAL: that high fiving, free society, that’s been smart in its investing, and has permitted its people to “Retire”. There’s a funny thing about retirement though, people don’t just stop living — they finally find a passion and pursue it. Imagine what this World could be, if people could do that from birth?

Let’s get back to the ways of the founding fathers: of, by, and for US — THE PEOPLE!

Protests in the US are not low-level terrorism!

OWS protests in the UK are not part of a terrorist regime!

The “Detention bill” is INSANE!

Our governments influence has grown far too large in some regards, and has shrunk far too small with others, particularly with what really matters — serving the people! This is not a Democracy we have here — it’s a corporate dictatorship; only concerned with the bottom line. Again I’ll say — Surely we can have a loftier goal for mankind than amassing stacks of greenbacks. The game’s rigged people, and we’re all playing as the away team –whilst somehow still being on our own turf…

EVERYBODY MATTERS, EVERY VOICE SHOULD HAVE IT’S CHANCE TO BE HEARD!

So, Surprisingly, in the end — maybe the Mafia had the right idea. Perhaps giving power to individuals voices to effect change is the right way to go. Maybe we should have a leader on every floor of an apartment, on the corner of every street, and have them alternate to avoid corruption. These people can then have two meetings, two times a week, where we can address our needs, if we have any — and if they can’t handle this issue of ours, they can pitch it up the chain of command either as our representative, or if we’re more knowledgeable, we would go ourselves. From the block, to the town, to the city, to the county, to the state, to the time-zone, to the country — and right on up to the White houses door, should this individual and his/her question go, if it can’t be solved along the way. And in this way, they can finally hear about, and efficiently deal with, the bastards who are slashing our tires!

But who knows….

Certainly not me.

I’ve written over a tenth of a novel on this subject by now,

and am confident that it COULD be done…. But will it?

That, my friends, is the question that truly needs answering.

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(Well that, and will anybody ever read this?)

Who knows, but I’d guess — probably not 😉

~J

Ehy — Oh! How you doin readers?

Me, I’m fan-frickin-tastic. Thanks for askin’ — OH! — fuhgeddaboudit!

This sign is real! I kid you not!

Have ya’ll ever heard the story of, “The Three Little Pigs”? — No, you haven’t. Not the real one — This is the version I was told as a little kid (and would my parents lie?).

Once, not so long ago in Brooklyn, there were these three little Pigs.

One lived in a house of straw,

One lived in a house of sticks,

and One lived in a house of bricks.

One day, the Big Bad Wolf came knocking at the house of straws door,

and he said;

Little pig, little pig, let me in. Or I’ll huff, and I’ll puff, and I’ll blow this house in!

To which the frightened Pig replied,

Not by the hairs of my chinnie, chin, chin.

So the Wolf — being a beast of his word — sucked in a hefty volume of air, and with a single exhale of nothing but hot, wet CO2, (which could only be compared to Rick Perry’s speech during the republican debate the other night), blew down the house, and the little Pig ran out the back door over his brother’s place, which was made of sticks.

Before long, there was a knock at the door.

Little pig, little pig, let me in. Or I’ll huff, and I’ll puff, and I’ll blow this house in!

To which the two shivering brothers answered,

Not by the hairs of our chinnie, chin, chins.

So again — just as before — the Wolf pulled a Perry, and blew down the house with a gale of hot gas. The two horrified brothers ran, with all haste, on over to their other brothers pad, which was made of bricks.

As they made it inside, the two pigs slammed the door behind them and slid, leaning on it, down to the floor — gasping for breath.

Ehy, their big brother greeted them. What’s-a-matta wit you’se guys?

“I-i-i-it’s, th, th, the, Bi-Bi-Big…. bad….” stuttered the brothers.

Spit it out already would ya?, he encouraged… lovingly.

The big bad wolf blew down my home, Said one. And my home too, said the other. And now he’s coming here to blow your house down too! They finished, in pigley surround-sound.

The big brother Pig grabbed his siblings by their respective collars, (as even pigs have leash laws these days in Brooklyn), and slapped them both hard across the face.

Calm down you morons. He added, for… support, I got this. Bolt the door.

The big brother pot-bellied Pig then made his way over to his plush, forest green colored Laz-Y-boy sofa, where he re-lit a Cuban cigar which sat smouldering, next to some scotch, in a well overfilled ashtray, picked up the phone, and causally dialed a number.

The two other brothers, confounded at the reaction they were witnessing, had to forcibly pull themselves back to reality in order to bolt the door — and they did so just in time.

Little pig, little pig, let me in. Or I’ll huff, and I’ll puff, and I’ll blow this house in! Shouted the Wolf, as he jiggled the knob.

Wh, wh, wh, wh, who — are you calling big bro?, Asked the Stick-Pig.

Don’t-worrye-boudit, he replied, as he reclined in his Laz-Y-boy and took a deep pull on his cigar.

I said…, began the wolf again, obviously wondering if anyone was home by the lack of response he’d gotten, Little pig, little pig, let me in. Or I’ll huff, and I’ll puff, and I’ll blow this house in!

Just then, a black, stretch Hummer-limo rolled easily to a stop in front of the house of bricks, and a back tinted window descended slowly into the door, resting into its lowest position. Soon after, a metal ring could be seen peeking out through the shadows of the back seat, for only but a moment as it heliographed brilliantly off the clear afternoon sun, before it violently exploded outward with fire, pumping the wolf on the front porch full of steaming hot lead — and ending his life in a bloody heap on their brick-laden doorstep.

The car promptly screeched away on down the road, leaving nothing but thick grey exhaust lingering in its wake.

The older brother extended a couple of Cubans to his brothers as he clicked on the TV — and they vigorously peed on the floor, (why don’t pigs wear pants?).

Wh, who, whooooo was that? They stammered.

What!? snapped their brother from his chair, with incredulity, and an intonation which implied that they were both idiots, all while his cherry surged under another pull. Oh, that? he added, realizing their confusions stemming. fuhgeddaboudit… Those were my friends…

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….

..

.

“The Guinea Pigs”

Ehy -- what're U laughin' at?

Hey, don’t laugh — or they’ll come after you next. And let me tell you, in their giant wheels, these guys are quite intimidating coming down the block.

(BTW, Would you believe that I’ve actually used this joke for auditions?)

Anyway — let’s do this thing!

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~ The Mafia ~

Good people of the Deranged and Enlightened persuasions alike, I’ve been raking my brain, and scouring all the sources I could find, for a good, viable (and hopefully marginally funny), example of how we should model the structuring of the new world. During my quest, I was more than a bit entertained to find quite a volume of individuals who feel that a lack of empathy in the world is what should be attributed to the unbalancing that’s happened over time, and more than a few of these individuals actually suggested that we re-instate the Mafia to fix this.

Wha?

The reasoning goes something like this: Back when John Gotti lived in Queens, nobody had to lock their doors, and nobody was afraid to walk the streets — for if anybody bothered the good citizens of Johnnie-boy’s town, they’d surely have hell to pay. The legend of the, “Untouchable Borough” spread far and wide, and (purportedly) crime in the area was simply non-existent.

Once — only once — had a couple young hooligans come to town, after a late night binger in the city, and for fun they started slashing tires. The next morning people of the neighborhood bemoaned the incident to one another, and word quickly spread to Johnnies ears, who within a week found the boys — and beat them to within an inch of their lives.

That was the last time anybody attempted to mess with the Mob’s town.

This story, of course, is HIGHLY romanticized…

and more than a bit untrue — being that it’s missing the other half of the tale.

Sure, people didn’t lock doors, and there was no crime — at least, no crime that wasn’t commissioned by John himself. He’d bought the police, he’d shaken down local store owners for money on a regular basis, and he ran the racket for so long that the people actually began to see this as a good thing. As if he’d had their best interests at heart all along.

The truth is these people were brainwashed.

This man was a criminal. He’d taken their hard-earned money by force, and “reallocated it” to where he’d seen fit. And, somehow, the people praised him for it! So naturally, as we can all see the coloration from this style of Mob-Governance, to the USA’s governing style at large, I find that viewing Government like the Mafia is an interesting and beneficial lens for us to gaze through, in an effort to better comprehend our current worldwide situations — and a swell starting point for us to begin changing our World.

There is one key difference between the two however — at least the mafia was local enough to know the needs of its people, the Federal Government on the other hand, perhaps, has grown too large to rival the mobs efficacy in this regard. But, enough with witty openings — if even I had the right to claim such a thing — this post is all about the changes that would be needed to rectify, beautify, and creatify (I know — not an actual word — I’m off the deep end…) the world at large, and even though I’m calling it, “Democracy 2.0”, these ideals, which I’ve covered in “The Great Reset” (TGR) up until this point, should in theory be applicable to any corner of the world that’s looking to make a change for the better.

Shall we do a quick recap? WE SHALL!

(Also, *fair warning*, this is likely to be a long post as I’m attempting to literally “Fix the world” and all, so if you’re the type who needs a break — this would be a swell place to take one ;-). Otherwise, go ahead and click the right-facing, charcoal-colored arrow at the bottom of this post when it appears.)

Welcome back reader,

I hope you’re all ready for amateur Engineer hour here on the blog, cause for all your sakes I’ve not only gotten creative on this topic, but I’d actually whipped out my old college, TI-83 calculator, and my paltry photoshop skills, (Be nice please 🙂  ) for the occasion — and I have to say, I’m rather proud.

Today we’re going to continue along on our journey to reinvent the world in a wiser image — so let’s get going right away! (If you need a refresher course on this multi-part series we’re doing, you can find parts 1 and 2 by clicking the numbers you just read.)

And now, without further ado, please allow me to cordially introduce you to, (provided you’ve not already met at that trendy new bar up the street), the worlds tallest building,

“The Burj Khalifa”.

Breathtaking, isn’t it? At 2,723 feet tall, the Burj Khalifa towers over the worlds previous record holder, “Taipei 101“, by an astounding 1,052 feet! This modern marvel would never have become a reality if traditional building practices were employed. Indeed, the architects who breathed life into this behemoth literally re-wrote the book on super-massive structures in order to make it happen. What had come before it, simply could not have worked for the undertaking they’d planned, and, as we’ve said many times prior here on the Blog for the Deranged and Enlightened: Necessity is the mother of invention.

The world needs a change people — and today, I’ve invented something for you all… Sort of, (You’ll see soon enough).

Invention is now our only form of evolution, we spoke on this last time, being that we’ve halted the process physically. So we should look on something like this as if we’ve all just evolved. A new way of doing something we’d done before, only better, is mankind evolving right before your very eyes! Go ahead, take another look at it with that in mind, I swear it makes it all-the-better.

Personally, I can think of no better way to begin rewriting our history, after, “The Great Reset”, by taking direction from one of our last great evolutionary leaps before, well… You know — I seized the world like a Giant etch-a-sketch, and shook the bloody hell out of it! So, again, here we are — nothing on the planet cept’ for a bunch of us naked folk, and we’re all getting hungry, thirsty, and cold. And you just De-throned that dastardly, “Frog”, fellow — good work! Now where were we?

Ahhhh, yes — Food, Water and Shelter. That would be the first thing we’d have to take care of in a new world (for obvious reasons), so — knowing what we know now — how should we do it? We’ll need a form of energy to begin with won’t we, and there’s always Oil… But then again, even though we’ve hit reset, Oil is still destined to run out on this planet. How about we see if we can’t build a society that won’t rely such a finite resource? How about we build something with the Oil that will take us off its dependence once and for all after we’re done?

With this in mind, I attempted to create a prototype city, for our naked denizens of “The Great Reset”,  that could displace New York City itself, and all of it’s 8 Million residents!

Boom-Shakalaka!

Seriously you kids in the back, I mean it! No making fun of my photoshop!

What you are looking at, is my idea of an ideal city; set into a circle, to minimize travel distances and maximize efficiency. I have inventions for it all, each and every facet of it, and if I took the time to tell you about them all I would have to make this a seven part series right here and now — and being that I’ve already been working on this for most of the day, (That is when I wasn’t covered in Poo — don’t ask), I’ll spare you the details and merely highlight a couple of ones I find particularly cool.

The Central Well will fill with rainwater gathered by gradually pitched pipe segments, and each manufactured segment would be home to a tiny turbine — so that energy would be generated by the waters natural weight and flow, thanks to gravity, and so that broken or clogged segments could easily be replaced. At the center gathering point, I’d like a great pool with a port at the bottom. Periodically, as the weight of the pool became sufficient, the port would release this, “Dirty Water”, deep down into the earth, where geothermal forces would boil and partially cleanse the volume of fluid. Then, as the next jet of water was released into the pressurized tube behind it, the air trapped in the tube between the two would push the old volume up the other side, thanks to the weight of the heavy pool pushing hard down behind it, causing the now cleaner water to come along for the ride back up to the surface. On the way, as it returns to the surface, the water will be forced through minerals and rock to finish the water’s sterilization. In this way I would make a powerless, actually power generating, drainage system, and water sterilizer, for the city.

Other inventions I would love to employ would be this (Same as below), and this, (Another TED talk) — and many others to be sure. But like I’ve said I’ve simply got too much to cover here, so you’ll just have to take my word on it. (But seriously, on your next hour off, go watch those innovations. It’s our very evolution, and we look so cute in baby photos!)

You are sooooo staring at my butt!

Back to the Burj!

Let’s crunch some numbers! Manhattan has roughly 8 Million Residents, nearly .8% of the world’s population, and they’re all spread across a large area of land that looks like this, (If you’re a high-flying bird with an odd type of color-blindness I suppose):

Since I’m embracing the efficient mantra of, “Build up, not out”, Each of the Buildings that I’d like to use to house the residents in my new city would be the tallest structures that we know how to make — The Burj Khalifa. Taking 4 people to an apartment as an average, (remember — many babies and roommates abound in this city), and giving them all a nice, comfortable, 1,250 square foot area of living space, means in the end that we will need a total of 500 of these behemoths. If you take a look at the 5-O’clock area in my crude Photoshop image, you’ll see how I’ve diced up a segment into a 60 building space, leaving me 20 buildings and 80,000 residents shy — not really a big deal in the overall scheme of things (We’ll give em’ all of Brooklyn and Queens, that’ll shut em’ up 🙂 .

So, with a roughly 26,250 square foot “Footprint”, on the actual Burj, that boils down to an average width of 162 feet. Add the perimeter of all the buildings, plus all of the roads (I added 1/2 the width, 81′, for each of the eight), and you get our circumference — roughly 14,000 feet. Here’s where that TI-82 came in. Pi x Diameter = circumference — we all remember that. And our circumference, divided by Pi, gives us a Diameter for this crazy city that equals about 4,500 feet. Making all of NYC able to fit in an area that looks approximately like this:

Believe it or not, It's to scale.

Amazing isn’t it?

Want another shocker? Take a look at this map I found a while ago. It depicts the surface area of the earth that would need to be covered in order to power the globe with solar panels alone.

Now the map maker did not mention the loss of power due to shipping, nor what % efficiency that the panels would run. But that doesn’t matter really, our city would be entirely self sufficient, and if we add the invention from that TED talk I mentioned above — we would be able to power most of the east coast. (we would have problems with light hitting all the windows, but this is all merely rough planning for the thoughts in the blog. We would likely make many more, but smaller versions, of this city.)

If each of the towers had cost us exactly what the original had, and that’s unlikely because efficiency would quickly be established, the 1.5 Billion dollar price tag, times the 500 instances, would cost us a grand total of  750 Billion dollars. Add on the Skyscraper supermarkets I want, with hydroponic and hyper efficient/nutritious vegetables growing on each floor, that’s another 12 billion, making the grand total of this entire city, with all the other gizmos, somewhere in the ballpark of 800 Billion dollars.

Crazy you say?

Too much?

Remember, we spent $700,000,000,000 (That’s Seven Hundred Billion Dollars), last year on the defense and war budgets…

That could build us, as efficiency grew, at least one of these cities — WHICH RUN THEMSELVES, AND ACTUALLY GENERATE ENERGY — plus comfortably house 8 Million people, EVERY YEAR (In the US alone)…

Again, I find myself inexorably attached to the question, what in the hell are we spending our money on!?

This is surprisingly affordable — that is if we can stifle our blood-lust (Oil-lust?), for only a year; It’s cheap, would employ millions, and would let them live, pretty much, for free… People could take turns being farm-hands, the farms would rotate so as not to kill the soil, and we could be perfectly, locally sustainable. People would have more free time to pursue passions, and the evolution of our kind would be accelerated as such.

I tell ya’, I sure do hear a lot of people from my country complaining that the “Occupy Wall Street”, movement has no concrete aims — so let me make it clear. We are ready for the future. We are ready to grow up. We know that if you give a person the bare essentials, “food, shelter, and water”, rather than forcing them into indentured slavery for their entire lives to earn it, that their goals shift from survival, to something more — INVENTION!

If Invention is evolution, than this is mankind’s goal for the new future.

Currently 40% of jobs can be replaced by machines. I ask you all today: Shouldn’t we let them? Isn’t it possible that we’ve reached a point in mankind’s history where the struggle over survival should be over? A point in History where the work that our forefathers put in before us is finally paying off? We have the capability to make the world a better place. So lets!

This is but one “city”, that I envision for our future.

I am no genius, trust me… But it would work!

I am only a 28-year-old, regular stinkin’ guy, living in a city I just replaced, who felt like tinkering with an idea today.

This is my idea.

Thanks for reading, I look forward to all your thoughts.

~J

Welcome back everyone!

It’s so nice to see you again 🙂

It feels like only yesterday that we last talked. Feels like it — It wasn’t… 2 whole weeks I left you waiting. What a Jerk I am! I am sorry… Life sure has a funny way of dictating your actions at times, doesn’t it (So much for covering my entire world restructuring challenge in one week — Free will my ass!)? But irregardless of that, I am, genuinely, glad to be back here with you, with a little free time to add another post to my beloved Blog!

Particularly am I excited to begin lying out the details of just how we should approach this monumental task of rebuilding of our world. Am I scared? Sure, a little. It seems like a big task…. Excited? You bet-cha! I get to be the architect of an entire planet! Jealous? Good — than that’s enough tomfoolery on my part I suppose — let’s begin.

Quickly, and before I jump right into this, I just want to make sure that you can actually follow what I’m about to talk about (You know, in case you’ve not been keeping up with the blog. Tsk, tsk — naughty, naughty…), so, here it is:

In brief;

Basically, in my last 2 previous posts, I stated my belief that the state of the world is pretty dire — but relatively easy to fix, it’s merely slightly skewed — and that with a little simple finesse, and through mild use of our (collectively ignored), good-ole’ noggins, it would be relatively easy to get us all back on track. And, to put my money where my mouth was, (What money? I don’t have any money! I’m such a comedian…) I offered to put pen to paper to produce, for you all, a plan — a plan we could all begin to put in place tomorrow, that would not only work in the short-term, but could potentially make the world the place that we all dream it could be.

~ How about  a world with more fun than work…

~ How about a world with more free time to spend with loved ones…

~ How about a world that provides unlimited resources for whatever your passions are…

That’s what I’m talking about. And it is possible — if only we tighten a few loose bolts, here and there.

See, I posed the idea that the Earth came with a ginormous, “Reset”, button — just like in a video game — and we’d pressed it! Now, with our clean slate to do with what we will, and with our previous, “Before the Reset”, knowledge in-tact — how would we proceed? How should we?

And, that’s it really… You OK? Ya’ need a minute? Go ahead, take your time. You come back when your ready, ya’ hear, and then you read beyond my moat of em-dashes ———————————————————————————— Alright? Good? You all revved up and ready to go? Excellent, let’s move forward.

Yea, sure, the world is pretty messed up right now…

He actually bazinga'ed an old classmate of mine during his romp btw...

And we all want to know exactly who’s to blame, right? Who do we get to point the finger at? Because surely this crazy, two-timing world of ours, can’t be the result of our own doing — it must have been someone else! — and as soon as we know who that rapscallion is, that diabolical individual (As the “thinking”, seems to go), will begin his/her retribution to society at large, and all our current strife will just merely… melt away. Right? And won’ t that just make us feel oh-so-much better?

Nope!

Come on, you had to see that coming! That’s just plain old flawed logic. It’s not anyone’s fault in particular — collectively, we really must stop saying that (it’s preventing cooperation) —  it’s just been our natural progression across our existence as humans… Again, i feel compelled to tell you: IT’S NOBODY’S FAULT! Hate to burst your, “hate bubble” here, but, regardless of your stance on the situation that’s A’ brewing across this world, it’s likely that you’re wrong.

Let me be clear — It’s NOT: the evil FED, the lazy hippies, or the big business tycoons alone. Nor is it the fault of the sly salesmen of our day, the age of the internet, or any number of homeless citizens among us — who so obviously have life figured out, but yet heartlessly won’t share their secrets with us (dem bums!) —  but, rather, my good people, our situation today is the result of many varying factors, which took place over many hundreds of years — each with their own rhymes and reasons for coming about in their own time…

Think about it;

We all started out (much like the example from my last post), innocent, naked and in some field with nothing more than nature — We had nothing, and we knew nothing (remember though, that back then, ambivalence didn’t come with a cost. Today that is certainly not the case).

Did we know what the sun was — that mystical and giant fiery ball in the sky? Hell NO.

Did we know that the invisible sensation dancing across our skin on a windy day, was caused by Air — or even what air/wind was??? Certainly NOT.

Do you suppose that any caveman, ever, had even the slightest capacity to grasp, even the basic notion of, or the inherent implications therein, long-term, daily compounding interest for on a loan and/or any of its calculatory variants — which depend unwaveringly on a myriad of seemingly innate, and irrelevant factors?

What? NO — Heck NO — Wow! Seriously, I don’t even know what i just said…

Here’s the thing:

We didn’t know, because we didn’t need to know. Ignorance is bliss. We only worked to meet our needs. We didn’t try to exceed them, like we do today, because we simply couldn’t (Ya think a caveman put in a 9-5, 6 days a week? I think not.). Honestly, at the time, we had a whole lot more to be worried about. Can you take out a Panther, armed with only your bare hands? I rest my case… Feeding ourselves, protecting ourselves from the elements, and surviving — that’s it… Those were our goals. And, even though we’ve overcomplicated things these days, they’ve maintained our goals (whether we realize it or not), all the way up from mankind’s infancy, into his teenage years (which is where we are now) — and I say, (and I hope you agree), that its high time we grew up, people, and left our reckless and crazy ways in the past. Let’s become Adults, shall we?

It's A Meeee, Marioooo. Always eat your magic-mushrooms!

Stereotypically;

Adults take responsibility for their actions, and mitigate risks.

Teenagers consistently shirk responsibilities for fun, (and nutritionally bereft fast food…).

Adults plan ahead, as they understand that their very lives, and well-being, hang on a beam built of their cumulative actions.

Teenagers live in the moment because they can — they have a safety net of sorts behind them which insulates them from careless actions (Their parents house [Or a big stock of Oil]).

Adults budget, and carefully consume their resources — which time has shown them to be finite.

Teens spend recklessly, always on the next big fad or legendary chase (absolutely heedless of destroying their essential reserves, or if their lofty goal was ever even attainable at all…).

As we run out of resources on the planet, our ability to play the role of the “teenager” is rapidly diminishing…

From cavemen and their beloved Wheel, all the way to our discovery of Oil and it’s easily harvestable energy, we recklessly careened along our timeline, growing all-the-while, completely oblivious as to HOW we operated — HOW was irrelevant (like it is for the stereotypical teen) — all that mattered is that we did.

See, these toolsthis type of invention that characterizes mankind — halted, entirely, our physical evolutionary process (Yes, Neuroscientists, I know; our brains still are still changing. [Barely] But, our body’s form, as human, is, at this point, set in stone — like it or not — unless we change it ourselves through genetics…). No longer do we require the painfully long evolution process to, for example, match the Giraffes ability in nature to reach the top branch with an extra long neck, do we? Now we either we climb, or employ a ladder, (Or find another food source. Or cut it down. Or kill the Giraffe, and eat him — that long-necked bastard. Or — a million other things!). See what I mean? Times have changed.

No longer will WE ever change to suit our environment, but, rather, our environment must now change — in order to adapt to us.

As such, we have become the masters of our own evolution. How we interact with the world is our choice now — it’s never been this way in history before, and it’s definitely never going to turn back to how it was — save for massive extinction (which is highly doubtful). So, I say, in the immortal words of the omniscient Nike corporation (product placement royalties anyone? CALL ME!).

“Just do it”.

They're SO going to call!

Let’s plan our trajectory — why not? We can, we know how, and it’ll help. Plus it’s the only way for us to keep growing as a species (not to mention it’s the only way that we can begin to climb out from this rut we’ve fallen into). So, let’s just frickin’ do it! Cool with you? I knew it would be. That’s why i like ya’ reader! You’re alright 😉

See, that “There’s only one right answer”, approach (blaming one factor), is an obsolete thinking paradigm that occurs due to the way we were all taught in school. Sir Ken Robinson, does a marvelous job of explaining this concept in his (now world-famous), TED talk. (TED website, case you don’t know what that is — and you SHOULD if you come to this blog! My favorite version of his presentation, HERE — animated!) In reality many factors have led us to the crazy state we are in today.

So we’ve played the blame game, and it left us bitter. We occupied our streets, to show the world that we’re fed up. Now, i ask you all — what are we going to do about it?

Well — looks like I cant tell you today. Too long — sorry. But I’ve brought in an expert for help, and a second opinion on my plan, before I get into the fine details and tell you. Let’s see what I come up with….

~~~~~~NEXT TIME~~~~~~

Be well readers — Until we meet again, (on my next day off!)

~J

P.S. — Keep Wikipedia free to use and banner free, with a quick donation.

~~Wikipedia donation page~~

It’s the right thing to do, this is something like the library of the future. It’s a place for ideas, like my website, and i want it to thrive. (Broke as i am, and constantly joke about, i gave my 20$, so please — give a little if you can. Thank you.