Thursday, May 14, 2009

I Am 100% Degradable!

Just a few minutes ago, when I happened to be sitting on the toilet, I couldn't stop staring at the folded over edge of the grocery store bag lining the garbage can. I could see this phrase printed inside out and backwards


And then I realized that "degradable" backwards is "elbadarged," which looks a lot like el debarged. As in El De Barge, 80's pop star and lead singer of De Barge?

Surely you must remember his falsetto voice singing "To the beat of the rhythm of the night!" The group De Barge consisted of El, his sister, and his four brothers, including James, who was once married to Janet Jackson. I was confused - I always thought that Janet was married to El, which made me suppose that to be "El De Barged" is to be married to a man who is actually gay. But then I did a web search and realized that it was actually James...

Anyway, you may want to call "Rhythm of the Night" a one hit wonder, but De Barge had other chart toppers like "Who's Holding Donna Now?" and "You Wear It Well", which to this day, always gets stuck in my head whenever I hear that phrase. I mean, El's high pitched girly croon is hard to forget, kinda like Frankie Valli. And after El ditched the rest of the band, he had a hit with "Who's Johnny?" from the Short Circuit soundtrack. El was big for a bit.

I remember this one episode of "The Facts of Life" in which El De Barge made a special appearance. Tootie was all acting like she was swooning over him, which is sort of like seeing teenyboppers scream over Clay Aiken in one of his old music videos. I mean, I'm sure it happened sometime, somewhere in the world, but give me a break.

A cursory web search reveals the most recent news about El De Barge - last fall, he was arrested for possession of a controlled substance, and then he went to jail. So, maybe to be "El De Barged" is to be a successful Motown artist who later descends to a sitcom appearance along the slow but steady drop to prison life.

All I can say is, I appreciate you El De Barge. Your music, your voice, and your hair set the tone of a strangely surreal era - an era for which I am oddly nostalgic.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Dancing to the Beat of the Doldrums

I haven't posted lately because, frankly, I'm having a hard time getting a laugh on this nutty world. I guess you could say I'm depressed. Many factors contribute to this feeling (or, at times, the dull ache of too little feeling), but chief among them is that my awesome boss is leaving town for good, all of my coworkers and I are freaked out, and for the first time since I was hired, I sometimes dread going to work.

But I don't want to get too deep into that. I value my job enough that I don't want to create a weird situation for myself or for anyone else by openly bitching about work online. Besides, in this economy, I have enough job security issues already.

And yet, I know I'm lucky. In the past, when I was depressed all the time, I never found much relief in "counting my blessings" (people who suggest that strategy usually suffer from too many blessings and not enough empathy). But when you're standing at the precipice, and so many people around you are losing their jobs and their homes, and even rich people are killing themselves over their losses, it's easier to appreciate what you have. You may not have it for long.

In my case, I consider that:

I have health insurance, so if I return enough pop bottles, I can afford the copay on my annual pap smear

Never lost money on that non-existent 401K

If I ever get laid off, I can go back to working some crappy job and then I can bitch about it online - no qualms!

I have no credit cards and no temptation to open an account. Do you think anyone would actually extend credit to me?

No matter how hard my life can be, it never sucks as bad as growing up did

I'm prejudiced against machines. There are a whole lot of 'em I don't want and/or don't know how to operate, including cars, dishwashers, ipods, blackberries, microwave ovens, curling irons, cameras, coffee grinders, electric can openers, lawnmowers and segways. This saves me the trouble of purchasing, repairing, or replacing said items.

In the US of A, we the people of Michigan are on the cutting edge of pain. So I figure that when we finally bust the hell out of this state, I'll be ready for the new economic downturn in my new home.

I have awesome friends, and some of them have cable.