Monday, April 6, 2009

Weekend Update: Christopher Scissorhands


I am up rather early for once on a Saturday. After coffee with Larry, I head out for Astoria.

As the train pulls into Ditmars Boulevard, I see that I am early enough to grab some breakfast for my mother at McDonald's. I've been low-carbing, so I won't be needing anything more than coffee.

I stand among the disorganized mass of people and I wait to place my order.

"Please makey two lines pleese!" barks a small Indian woman behind the counter. You would never know that there were two registers open, because it's just as frantic and chaotic as Dunkin Donuts.

The "line" splits in two. I stay put, and the people behind me go to the other register, where they're served immediately, despite coming in behind me. I think this is bullshit, but really, what do you say that won't make you look like you're off your meds?

I place my order, remembering that I'm not hungry.

"One number one combo...and one number two combo."

(I guess we'll have to start this diet thing again on Monday)

"Do you want coffee or..."

"YES. Coffee on both."

"Milk and sugar?"

"No sugar, just milk."

"How many milk?"


She prepares the coffee and puts the cups on the counter. When the food is bagged and ready to go, she places it next to the coffee, all ready to say, "Vamoose."

Not so fast, bitch. I left my third arm at home, so carrying those two cups and a bag is going to be a fatal mistake.

"Can I have a bag for the coffee?"

She fakes a smile and bags the coffee just as I realize that I forgot to tell her to give me the nasty cream on the side. Hopefully Ma's in the mood for McCream today.

I leave McDonald's and bump into my cousins Donnie and Barry on the street. I am so totally zoned out that I wonder if I wasn't just mumbling to myself right before they spotted me.

We have small talk about Facebook and Easter. The word "Easter" causes me to have a mini-stroke, right there in the street, but they don't seem to notice.

At my parent's house, I am surprised to learn that my mother has received the three books I ordered for her birthday on Amazon. (Note to self: paying extra for expedited shipping is a total ripoff. Their free shipping estimate of 3-5 days works out to only two days)

My mother shows me the painting that her friend sent her for her birthday. It's a still life: A blue vase with some yellow flowers next to a blue plate propped up on a stand. Not exactly Picasso, but I can't do better so I'll just shut up.

Even though it arrived with a frame, the frame is detached as well as unfinished. I promise to bring polyurethane with me next week (although something tells me that my father is going to have it painted "shit brown" before I can get to it) We have a brief discussion over the placement of her new "art." She thinks it should go on in the dining room, I think it would look better in the living room. I start to argue my case, and then I realize that I really don't care.

Down in the basement, I stall. I know what I have to do, but I can't face it. I feel as though I have to slaughter a chicken right now. Sure, that chicken will be great grilled on top of a salad, but I'd rather not have to clean up the bloody mess.

What I have to do is cut a ton of glass, for future mosaics. I can't decide on what colors to cut, so I waste about a half hour on the internet. After posting a boring, self-serving status update on Facebook, I get to work.

The goal is to cut a 2" x 11" piece of glass into 1/4 inch square pieces. I will do this for each of the ten different colors I've picked out by the end of the day. It will be nice to have 3500 pieces of glass to play with.

After 5 hours, seven colors, 2400 pieces of glass, and hundreds of tiny cuts on my hands, I'm done. The tiny cuts come from trying to snap off the tiny pieces manually to get a clean break, rather than using breaking pliers.

I pack up my glass and I head back to Manhattan, knowing that I need to assemble and sell $120 worth of candle holders so I can invest in a new cutting system.

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