Captain Fantastic

Another Sunday, another day where I claim to stay inside and watch football. However, someone decided to play a cruel joke on me. Instead of getting Atlanta/New England, I am watching San Francisco/Minnesota. This appears to be logical, since San Francisco is a Californian team, but Tom Brady grew up in San Mateo…flawed logic, but I did not intend to watch two running teams…run the ball. At least, the game looks great on this television.

My stash of money is running dry, and I’m…unrepentant, I suppose. The store had a nervous breakdown Friday, which leaves me without a day’s pay from yesterday. At first, I was a little peeved, but I assured myself job security by thinking for the market manager. Literally, when an underling twenty years your junior gives you directions, there is a problem. Now, I’m not going to say I was unqualified for what I did (because I’m overqualified), but realistically…that was pathetic. I do not mean to come across as a wiseass know-it-all, but situations like that justify my position as a wiseass know-it-all. Speaking of horrible reaction papers…

I should be dead now. Why? I started a drinking game while grading papers for my intercultural communication class. How some people get in college is beyond me, because the quality of work I saw was substandard. No, understatement…piss-poor. I was considering being nice…but realistically, it was not going to happen. Thus, I took a red pen and proceeded to crap over every grammatical error and incorrect film reference I saw. As far as the drinking game, it didn’t take long to see that I’d die from liver failure after failing my first two papers. I have requested a security detail to and from class because of the backlash I’m sure I’ll receive. Bottom line is this: if I planned on acting unethically, they would still fail the class; their papers were just that bad.

On to a happier subject, work’s cancellation yesterday allowed me to drop in on salsa team auditions. I had fought against it, because it would require too much time. I guess the butterfly effect intervened on my behalf and allowed me to participate. I treated it like a joke, yet still was at worst the third best dancer there. It allowed me to scout future dance partners…and a current one named Victoria. We talked afterwards to touch base, and I’m sure more bases will be touched. There’s definitely interest and chemistry as evidenced by our tandem practice. We never had our second date, which changes this week, as we agreed to tentative plans. YAY! Or something like that. It was reassuring to know that my blatant overtures have not been ignored, and could probably be reciprocated. Did I mention I run the largest club on campus?

Did I also mention that I will be captain of the team I just joined?

Did I also mention that…meh, forget it. I’m missing a pair of green sleeves. Overall, I can say that this late bloomer stigma is fading rapidly as I settle into my role as the Last Emperor of Salsa. My influence spread to those around me, as I finally relented to give my wingman a nickname. Why did he care if I gave him a nickname? Because I have several. I decided to declare him the “Paragon of Virtue.” Why? Well, when you have a sick desire for revenge enough that you tell the pilot that he should flip off a girl on the dance floor, then subsequently abandon her…well, you have problems.

A girl decided to beat around the bush when it came to giving me her number, which is unacceptable. A simple no would have done, but no, it didn’t happen. She appeared at the nightclub I was supporting, and then Skylar came up with the idea. I modified it to a degree: instead of doing it at the beginning of the song, I waited until it was nearly over. I built up tension, and it was magical. She was feeling good, I was feeling giddy…and then I gave her the bird and excused myself from the venue. She told him Skylar actions were “fucked up.” Little did she know that he was the architect of my attack. Yes, what I did was horrible…and I feel no remorse.

Why should I? I think Victoria digs me. Skibbedebebop. Much later.

Current Track – Story of the Year “Just Close Your Eyes”

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The Improbable Salsa Juggernaut

Improbable is a baffling word, as it ambidextrous in usage. I could probably link it to “fuck” in the way that it could be positive or negative, but that would be inappropriate. Still, improbable is the perfect word to describe the rebirth of Salsa Club. I claim a decent stake in our success because I was the only one willing to throw shame out the door for the sake of the movement. Granted, I have little shame to begin with, but my excessive promotion gave us an edge. An edge that inadvertantly gave me a cold that I’m still battling.

Why am I not bitter that I’ve gotten sick? Simply put, the magnitude of this triumph is beyond my comprehension. We packed the school’s bar 200 people deep…and I’ve been on teaching/motivation duty for the last week. Literally, today is my first day without dance in a week, which is oddly scary. If I didn’t have tacos and wrestling, well, I’d probably be dragged to the floor somewhere. So, this teaching has left me in an unlikely position: popular beyond reproach. I’ve come full circle, actually; one of the benefits CSULB gave me was the ability to blend into a crowd and not become the center of attention. Funny how history has a way of showing a person’s true colors. I have salsa’d my way to reverence among the classes; I am responsible for teaching salsa to around 300 people, who refer to me as “Salsa Dude” when I am in public.

Teaching, teaching…yes. I’m good there, but better at motivation. During our first meeting…which was extremely packed, our instructor ran late. I was given the microphone and told to boost morale. Yes, yes I did. Extemporaneous speaking could be my calling, as I felt my asshole side emerge. Freaking awesome…I’m freaking awesome. Sure enough, I got everyone jumping up and down and eating from my sleeved palms. I guess I can pull rank when I did teach everyone their first basic steps. My job was primarily administrative, bouncing where needed. Yet, later on in the night, I got what I came for…or rather, what I got came to me.

There was one particular girl that I danced with last Friday who caught my eye. The chemistry was instantaneous, the feeling remarkable. I invited her to salsa, and I thought she was going to pass; she came late. And when she did, I whisked her to the floor and proceeded to implement the perfect form of Basic Offense: total, unrelenting cheeseball romance prose. We kept talking until she let a bomb drop: she doesn’t dance often. Two seconds later, I locked her in a dip and asked her out on a date the following night.

She accepted, and Cafe Sevilla it was…because The Reef closed down.

She held on to me the whole night and declined to leave my side. There was a complete invasion of personal space on both sides, and neither of us minded. It was, dare I say, magic? Magic. Definitely magic. She tried to dance me off the floor, but I kicked on the afterburner and wore her down. Really, someone wants to run me out the gym? Not a chance. I took her home, and well…I was about to pander in whis…no, this isn’t a Great Gatsby moment. She said she doesn’t kiss on first dates, but there was a long, tight embrace to close the evening. Also, I pointed out that I thought her policy was cool, except for the fact that I had a counterplan:

Our second date is Tuesday night under the stars in downtown Long Beach. More salsa, more connecting, and most of all…I think I just might smile. Yes…smiling is nice. So is Victoria. Skibbedebebop. Much later.

Current Track – Coldplay “Lovers in Japan”

Homeward Bound

I’m standing on the proverbial pitcher’s mound once more, with the year still being 2001 at Yankee Stadium. Or is it 2003 while I’m a Marlin? Either way, I’m comfortable being on the grandest stage, pandering to the last and greatest of all human emotions. In other words, I returned to school…both secondary and college for old time’s sake.

I’d like to begin with my thoughts on college. I’ve painted myself into a hole, knowing that this time, I probably can’t wiggle my way out of the catastrophe that I’ve constructed for my own pleasure. I’ve been feeling quite old, 21 years swiftly becoming 51 in the span of a day or two. More accurately, a week of living on campus has me reconsidering my purpose and the platitudes before me. What is it like being 21 and not done with college? Shouldn’t I have been done by now? What about grad school? What about…everything? My finances have taken a hit because for once I valued school over money. Roughly, it’s taking about $200/month away from me, assuredly leaving me in the red. I’m concerned, but I’m more intrigued with the idea of not being defined by money. Unless I find another job, I don’t have much choice. Outside of that, I’m looking at roughly a 3.5 and writing my own ticket to Berkeley. If that happens, well, maybe I’ll find peace in a peace pipe somewhere near Oakland.

I officially take over as Salsa Club Treasurer in about a week, and I’m wondering if it will benefit me as much as I need. However, seeing my recently run on the salsa circuit, I could realize my last goal in college. It wouldn’t take long if I am snatched onto the floor everytime I gasp for breath. Literally, I have never recalled being more popular on the dance floor. I’m not sure if I’ve picked up any more moves; perhaps my personality has taken a turn for dominance. I hope that’s the case…it would make me happy. As well, I found my cocktail of choice for dancing; I just have to remember that it has a 30 minute fuse attached. Once it hits, it hits. Ask my sidekick; it destroyed him and left his knees out of service, which provided for laughs he probably couldn’t comprehend.

Lastly, I returned home this past week. Not so much my room, but thanks to my mother’s influence, I’m secure with what I have. Hell, a lousy six inches on a television makes all the difference when using random schmucks online for Tekken target practice. Sure, five belts adorn my wall…which comes in handy anytime I need to be reassured of my greatness, or potential for destruction. But no, I returned to El Segundo to bug a teacher. Oddly, I was well-received. I knew I was a kissass in high school, but it’s pretty ridiculous when teachers stop caring about their benefits to rub shoulders with you. Republicans, Democrats, Englishwomen, thespians…it was great. In fact, I was invited to give a couple of speeches on college admission and salsa theory. Yes, I’m now a visiting instructor at the high school to teach salsa in dance class. I thought after Starbucks and football that I’d be content to not return; I was wrong. I’m still a favorite son there, while Jordan hides from teachers…which is pretty meaningless, seeing as they ignored his ass. I’m not sure if it’s cool that anyone who rolls with me is essentially subjected to sidekick classification. Well, someone has to be the messiah, and every messiah needs a drunk, meek compatriot who probably does most of the heavy lifting with little fanfare.

On the horizon, I’m sure the fairer sex will come around. After all, I teach salsa and double as a teacher’s assistant while holding a post at the Russian Journal of Communication. SCORE! It is no longer a matter of if, but when. Skibbedebebop. Much later.

Current Track – Crush 40 “Fight the Knight”