Sunday, December 20, 2009

Wilkesbarrians and biorythms.

I think I’m becoming a Wilkesbarrian.

Back in the mid 1990s, I worked for Domino’s Pizza delivering to the stores in the area. One of my routes took me to Pennsylvania.

After spending the night at a motel, I started the second half of my route around 1 AM. My first stop was the store on Pennsylvania Ave in Wilkes-Barre. After making my stop, I always wandered over to the Mr. Donut (now a Dunkin), which was open all night, for my first hot cup of coffee. There were always the same people sitting in the donut shop, numbering from 5 to maybe 12 staring blankly out the window, reading a book, or just watching their coffee swirl. In the two years I did that route, the same people were always there- winter, summer, fall and spring. The weather didn’t matter either, it could be snowing or in the middle of a sweet summer thunderstorm, those folks always were there. I found out gradually, that they were people who work odd hours, mostly third shifters, some all night delivery truck drivers, whose biorhythms never readjusted to daytime hours. Most of these patrons were retired or unemployed, and shared their nights of sleepless hell with each other, not communicating their aguish with words, but with just unspoken companionship.

I called them Wilkesbarrians. Most of the people in my circle, after explaining the term for the first time, understand when I call a person a Wilkesbarrian.

I mean no disrespect for those folks. It seems like a lot of people worked odd hours out there in the Wyoming Valley of PA, more than any other area that I went to. That’s why I coined that term, rather than anything else. I don’t know if there is an official term for those people who reside in that area, but Wilkesbarrian seems fine to me.

The past week I’ve been on vacation. I like NOT getting up at midnight and during my time off I generally slept until 4 or 5 AM, late for my standards, but early for the rest of the population. Around mid Wednesday, I developed a crippling headache. I still am dealing with this, even after taking many remedies for headaches. I remember back on my spring vacation, the same thing happened. I don’t know if it’s the sudden shift in sleeping hours, I try and stay up later than normal, but the headaches still find me. I think it’s a shift in my biorhythms, my body is telling something. I’m becoming a Wilkesbarrian.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

~~~Baby needs a new pair of pants~~~

I finally bought a pair. Yep I did. In these uncertain economic times I spent cash frivolously on a pair of pants that I might not wear. I had a pair of these when I was a kid:

I only paid 25 bucks for them, but I've wanted a pair for a long time. My brother was working on my car at his dealership a few months ago and mentioned that he had seen a clip of an old NASCAR race and one of the racing car's pit crews were wearing these Coke pants. I'm going to freak him out and wear them into his dealership soon, when it gets a little warmer outside, as they are very light cotton and I don't want my legs turning blue.

Also I think they would be a great prop costume in a movie. I'm writing/wrote some emotional short film scripts, and if I ever get someone to finance/direct/sponsor/read one of them, these pants would make a great statement in one of them. I try and balance sad emotional stuff with sight gags that are absurdly ridiculous, so in that vain, these are perfect.

~~~~~And in a footnote- I got a note from the Ebay seller and she had a pair of these with the writing in French and offered the pair to me cheap. So now I have a cool French pair to strut around Paris (Or Montreal) in.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Can't pick your relatives~~~~~~~~

My grandmother was nuts.

She insisted that we are direct descendants of Marie Antoinette. How? I thought her whole family was killed. I have tried to find proof to this but I have not yet, so I am skeptical.

But my dad's younger sister died when she was 14 or so. I don't know why, but it must have been quite a burden on my grandmother. But she searched and finally adopted a girl about the same age as my late aunt, and even (the weird part) with the same initials as my Aunt Gladys. So Gloria Mae Wheaton became Gloria Mae Galpin.

I;m trying to get my head wrapped around this book I want to write on trucking- write what you know is what people tell me. So this morning I remembered a box of stuff up in my attic that had pictures of my grandfather standing next to his 'new' trucks in the 1920s and 1930s and thought they might be a cool addition to my book.

While searching through this box of junk this morning, deposited and not moved since my grandmother died in 1996, I found a rather curious envelope that I had missed almost 13 years ago now. It was a letter with a lawyer's return address on it, and in the envelope there was a few legal papers and another envelope.

In the smaller envelope was a letter from my adopted aunt Gloria, along with pictures of her grand kids dated 1980. It was a short note, explaining who was who, but the gist of the note was plea for her birth certificate, since she never got it when she fled from my nutty grandmother when she was old enough to leave. In the larger envelope was an adoption letter, making Gloria my grandparents adopted child and thus changing her surname to Galpin.

I live about 65 miles from where my grandmother lived and while she was alive, was fortunate that a neighbor who she had known since HE was a boy, checked in on her and looked out after her in my absence. After she died, Tom, the neighbor, and I talked a lot and he remembered Gloria as a beautiful girl, very popular at school and quite out of place in my grandparent's home. My dad was away in the Navy, so Gloria was the only one left at home, and Tom said as soon as she was able to, left because (as he said) my grandmother tried to make Gloria Gladys.

Why my grandmother never sent these papers to her is beyond me, but I remember in my grandmother's will Gloria was to get nothing, and she went out of her way to word it so. She even mentioned Gloria's three know surnames: Galpin,Wheaton and her married name Accettulla.She even mentioned my older brother, whom I never have met, but that's not the point here.

So, I have been doing a web search for my adopted aunt to try and get in touch with her to send these papers to her. The letter to my grandmother has a Pittsburgh PA address on it, so I have found someone in PA with her name, and I hope she is still alive so I can send a letter to her and hope she is the right one.

So anyone knowing a Gloria Accettulla in Pittsburgh, tell her that her adopted brother Eddie's son has the papers she was needing almost 30 years ago.

I'm off to mail a letter to Pittsburgh. Maybe I can get to meet her before she passes on, because she must be quite elderly by this time.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

A bird in the hand makes a mess....

Has anyone read this article about the trial in Nigeria where a goat was put on trial for stealing a car. Supposedly, while being apprehended, one of the suspects turned his back on police and used black magic to turn into a goat. The goat was put on trial and paraded in front of the jury.

So I was thinking I should get some business cards made up and buy two dozen canaries. The cards would read something like I was a purveyor of black magic. I could then go on a crime spree and leave a canary and a card at every crime scene and the cops would think that I turned myself into the canary. Ha ha ha!

In other news, see the new Dunkin' Donuts logo?
It reminds me of a goofy alien face:

I wonder where she works and I'll bet she gets a lot of tips.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

She said she was barren~~~as she gave birth to my child~~~

...But I am now. Creatively, that is. So in honor of my dry spell, I'm posting two creations from my former website, balonie-factorie.

This next one is called Mail Prostitutes:
This last "cartoon" is available as a t-shirt or mug at my store. Buy a ton of them and make me rich. Buy ten or more and I'll buy YOU lunch, wherever you are. Such a deal!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

A sad anniversary---

I can’t believe it’s been a year. A year has passed since I lost my little buddy. My original tribute is here.

A lot has happened in this year. I worked almost every day from June until October, but that doesn’t mean Tiggy was out of my mind. Quite the contrary.

The little cat must have had some kind of telepathy, he always seemed to know when I had a bad day, as he would greet me by the door with one of his “Meooorrww” and I would pick him up and my bad day would melt away. On good days, he wouldn’t even move from the comfort of his sleeping place, wherever that was at that time, and I would pass him by and he would wink just one eye at me, as if to say, “You didn’t need me, today did you.” But he would always make sure I was in bed and then come and snuggle.

My father died when I was 18, my mother left soon after making me fend for myself and my younger brother, and then she died when I was in my early 40s, but I shed more tears and felt more emotion over this little cat than I did the passing of my own parents. It’s weird how someone can get so emotionally attached to a pet and I did, most likely because of what happened to me when I was younger. My children miss him as much as I do; he was some sort of super spirit, so it’s just not me mourning this day.

So I will always mourn May 10, the day my dad passed, May 17, the day my mom died and most importantly January 14, the day my best friend died.