Breaking Bad

Friday, March 28, 2008

As 10:35, my planned departure time, neared, the butterflies in my stomach intensified. Playing tournaments every week as I was, competition had become routine, so I was surprised that I was even feeling nervous.

No delays between West Chester and my Route 1 exit, and this allowed me the extra time to stop in at Comic Relief to pick up the issue of Kick-Ass that I had reserved. This might very well be one of the greatest comic books ever, and a magnificent unrecreation of my entire adolescence.

I walked into the Marriott and saw the Princeton tournament listed on an electronic sign. I walked in the direction of the arrow, and Dave Cullen called out to me. These people were very organized, with Dave and Scott's wife manning a registration table. Dave then led me to the EB playing room, figuring it was probably easier than explaining where it was. A good idea, as the room was situated rather deep into the building. Since I planned to go out for lunch between rounds, I worried that the time required to exit the building and return would cost me precious minutes.

Oh, I should also point out the the Princeton tournament staff's degree of organization extended to matching purple Princeton Scrabble club t-shirts. A nice touch. Okay, I'll confess that I added these compliments in part to try and make up for throwing the chair, but they are no less valid.

I need not have worried about having time to get lunch, because I was granted some very easy tiles against Verna Richards Berg. KIDDIEs on my second turn, and the second blank soon followed. 78 points for ZA(R)F, plus the cute (as Verna called it) TRI(COLORs), and finally AcONITE, and I posted a 155-point spread in about 15-20 minutes total.

I did not get to play him, but I finally got to see what Edward de Guzman looked like. Even though he is Latino like Cesar, they do not look alike.

As I sat opposite Joe Dollarwiener, and next to Young Temptress, I was overcome with a feeling of nervousness. I had rarely been in such close proximity to YT, and in the past she had been much too young to even be a consideration. But now that she had come of age, I was able to seriously think about how best to make my move. But I had more immediate worries, as Joe quickly played the pedestrian bingos CATLINS and, not long after that, the even more pedestrian SANDIER. I managed to keep up despite clunky tiles, but when I was forced to burn my blank for 53 points, VEtO, I figured Joe had to have either the second blank or the S. With either, he would probably have won. Instead, I drew both, but my win was not assured. At this point, Joe had just exchanged 4, and there were seven tiles in the bag.

I saw both bingos, but also the possibility that Joe would bingo out after me. Quackle likes the bingo, but I have to disregard that. Another factor was that Joe was low on time. I figured that between the blank and S and Joe's time trouble, I could win without the bingo. I wonder if any top experts out there would have played the bingo in this case.

I got really lucky with the triple-triple P(R)ONoUNS against Whitmarsh, but I screwed up the endgame though, and tried to play KRUS(E)*/(OCREATE)S*, thus allowing Brad to go out first and catch me with 16. This was actually a 58-point error, and this became significant later when six of us went into the final round at 3-1.

David Koenig outdrew me again, and in the same weak-ass fashion as in Farmingdale, three baby bingos, (E)SERINeS, LEANEST, and GERBILs. Grrr...

Because of my endgame screwup against Brad, I was #5 of the 6 3-and-1s. Not only did I need to win, but I needed to win big if I wanted 2nd (possible) or 1st (extremely unlikely). Once I took control of the game, I was able to monitor the other two games. The David/Joe match was easy, because David is good about verifying both scores. But with Guzman/Malik, Shahid would announce Guzy's score, but Guzy remained silent. Very annoying.

Of course I had to worry about mine own game, too. After a rocky start, challenging (K)INDLERS, I managed to draw back-to-back CARNIES and HE(L)IPoRT to gain significant momentum against Mark Richards Berg. Still, I could have blown the game for trying to maximize my spread, and for not being able to resist trying to bingo a third time, but Mark wasn't having my (E)UPNOEAL*. I still won by 62, but it wasn't enough for 2nd place, in part because of stupid Shahid and his stupid REEATEN*. If Edward had beaten him by just a few points, I was looking at second, but he won by 40+ instead. REEATEN*??? I mean, come on!!!

I can't say where I headed during the break, for reasons that will become obvious. My massage was extremely satisfactory, and I felt very relaxed, but it was later than I thought. I grabbed a quick slice of pizza and rushed off. Traffic on the main drag seemed slow, so I turned onto a side street. Now the thing you have to understand about anagramming in the car is that it is not inherently unsafe. I just have to take my eyes off the road for less than a second. Less than half a second even. Just enough to see the alphagram, and then I could turn my eyes back to the road while I solved it. I still lived in fear, though, a pedestrian doing something really stupid and ruining my life. And finally, it happened, a young man, a punk, really, ignored the fact that I had the green light and darted across the road. He would have made it, except that he dropped a notebook and stopped dead in his tracks and turned to get it... and I clipped him. All of a sudden, I was not so much relaxed. That was it. My life was over. Hitting a pedestrian is about the worst thing that can happen to a driver. My heart started racing as my fight or flight instinct kicked in. Stay and make the claim that the pedestrian was in the wrong, or flee and take the risk that I would be found. I had knocked the guy onto his back, and I could see that he was not yet looking at my car. I looked up at the light, and I did not see a camera. I had an opportunity. I took it, and I gunned the engine. I could see the guy get up on his knees and look at my car as I drove away. Did he get my plate? Did he???

I returned to the Marriott breathless and frazzled. Carole Denton led me to the playing room, where I realized that I had to go all the way back out to the lobby to retrieve my scorecard. Given who my first opponent was, I made sure to stop at the bathroom and brush my teeth, so as to better make an impression. When I returned to the room, something seemed amiss. MY BACKPACK!!! SHIT!!! I had all my credit cards, three passports, and $15,000 in cash in that thing--not something to want to leave lying around! That's why you never see me without my backpack.

MS waited for me, perhaps impatiently, perhaps not. She's hard to read. And she plays a hard game, too. I was almost emasculated for a second time, and only a last-minute find of MASsA(G)ER (a word I should never miss) saved me. Later, I would find out that I had missed (N)EGlIGEE early in the game. I reall shouldn't have missed that, given that the person I was playing is rumoured to have, under another name, moonlighted as a Victoria's Secret model. At least I found rELIGIO(N), a word that is on my mind for the better part of every day for over a decade as I contemplate how best to eliminate it.

Next, Mr. Frank who-needs-to-study-when-I-can-luckbag Tangredi, pulling gold out of the bag yet again, ruining my chance at a 3-and-0 night.

I, on the other hand, am perfectly willing to admit that I had the better draw over Dictionary Oil Company. Game was still disappointing, though, because of what happened at the end. Dictionary overdrew, taking the last four tiles out of the bag. This allowed me to both give him the V and put the O back in the bag. Holding EEFNST? and knowing the O was in the bag, I had every opportunity to set myself up for an out-bingo. I saw that I could play off an E and draw (S)OFTNESs, but I did not see SOFTENs, which was the only play I had if Mr. Oil Company blocked that open S. I won by 164, but I should have won by over 200.

I left right away with the intention of sleeping as much as possible, completely unaware of what the night would bring. My tried and true, peaceful, campground in Highland Park was 17 miles away, so I decided to head south instead, into Trenton. Risky? Possibly, but also closer to the action if I woke up restless in the middle of the night.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Waking up turned out to not so much be the issue, because I could not manage to fall asleep to begin with. My losses to Koenig and Tangredi still haunted me, as did the spread I dropped against Whitmarsh, as did my inability to charm the YT. But most of all, I was nervous about the hit-and-run situation. Would the cops catch up with me eventually?

Around 1:00 AM I gave up on sleep, took two more fake Excedrin, and started to drive around. There was plenty of activity on Broad Street still, as well as Clinton Ave. After some time, an idea that had been percolating inside my noggin for years. I'd heard over and over about how good this crystal meth stuff was, how it boosted one's energy level and enhanced mental prowess. With my job about to end, and months of traveling on the horizon, it was a good time to finally give meth a try. I figured several months had to be enough time for all traces to exit my system in case I had to take a drug test.

But how to actually find a dealer? I figured if I just went up to some guy on a corner and asked, I was liable to be robbed or ripped off. What I needed was somebody knowledgeable, somebody who might use regularly. Like, for example, a street hooker. It took an hour of driving around, but I finally found a lady, maybe in her early 20s, who did not look scary. I asked her if she wanted a ride, and when she got in the car I asked if she knew where I could get some meth. She said "yeah", and then she said if I "wanted to date". That's not what I was down there for, but it was the only way she was going to help me, so I figured I might as well make the most of it and try something else I'd been wondering about. I asked if she could do a Restless Penguin, and she said she didn't have a problem with that.

She wanted to get the meth first, and that was fine with me, so she directed me to some house on a side street off Canal Blvd. I was torn between parking the car right in front so I could make a quick getaway if necessary, and risk being impounded if there was a bust, or parking on the next street and walking, in which case I'd be exposed for as much time as it took to get to my car if something went wrong. I was probably overthinking the situation. I mean, people buy drugs all the time without any trouble, don't they?

I was met at the door by a really skeevy-looking dude. I was certain that he would have tried to scam me if I didn't have Carmel with me. I let her do the talking, and we soon managed to walk away with a couple of hits. As we drove away, Carmel started to light up. I didn't really want her so obviously smoking in my car, but I didn't want to get into an argument either. Junkies can't get really pissed off if you try to fuck with their high. Plus, if she didn't get high first, that's all she would be thinking about during our "date", and the Restless Penguin really requires time and concentration to come off most effectively. It also requires a bit of space, so we had to drive a ways off the main drag until we found an industrial area where we could go behind a building.

It was almost 4:00 AM by the time I dropped Carmel off, and I was beyond exhausted. I had the meth though, and I was anxious to try it, but I decided to hold off. I needed to sleep at least a few hours. I drove until I found an apartment complex with cars parked out on the street, where I wouldn't attract attention, and I promptly passed out.

8:00 AM rolled around much too quickly, and as soon as I awoke I had a realization. I had a packet of crystal meth, but I had no idea how to administer it into my body! Carmel had done something with some glass thing, but I had been too busy anticipating the Restless Penguin to pay attention.

What to do? Well, as silly as this sounds, I turned to a tried and true avenue for finding information--Wikipedia. The entry for crystal meth explained that meth can be injected or smoked with a glass pipe, but that it could also be smoked in aluminum foil. I was thus able to kill two birds with one stone by heading over to Whole Foods, where I was able to buy fruit, juice, and a scone, along with a lighter and some aluminum foil. Convenient.

I'm sure there is some web page out there that explains exactly how to light up the meth in the foil, but I didn't have time to look for it. I just folded a long sheet of foil over three times until I had a thick sheet. I rolled the sheet into a tube and pinched one end together. I was then able to dump the crystals into the tube and hold it from the top while I applied the lighter flame to the bottom.

That worked, though I was sure I was letting a good portion of the precious fumes escape. I breathed in a best I could deeply, until I could no longer smell anything coming from the makeshift tube. In the mealwhile, I had heard somebody trying to open the bathroom door, so when I opened the door and left, I did so very, very quickly. I don't know if the drug was taking effect yet or if it was just nerves, but I was shaking as I sped out of the parking lot.

I was already feeling amped when I sat down to face Mitch Brook. Despite screwing up my opening play, UNBELTs instead of UNBLEsT, I drew well and had no trouble. During the game the meth really started to kick in, and I imagined that I could see all these word possibilities. But this was just my imagination, as I quickly learned going into my game with Whitmarsh. Instead of seeing everything, it was more like I couldn't focus. I sat there with BEIMQRU for a long time without every seeing R(E)QUIEM, and I finally gave up and just played key. Later, I convinced myself that (R)ADARMEN* had to be good, and I was already congratulating myself for challenging it when Bradley blunted my high by challenging it off. I became flustered, and two turns later I completely lost my mind and played JA(K)ED*. So much for the idea that meth would improve my game.

Not only did the meth make it hard to focus, but it screwed up my addition too, and this cost me big against Richard Propodrowszki. Had I scored T(R)IAZINE correctly, 104, instead of 82, I would have won. Ordinarily, I would have been feeling really morose over that mistake, but because of the effects of the meth, I was really angry instead. I went into lunch really pissed, and I was a dick to pretty much everybody sitting at the table. I bitched at Richard for drawing lucky, I made fun of Joe for being in Division 2 (and this despite his having been sick the night before), I laught at Mitch for only winning one game. I was all-around obnoxious.

It was such a good thing that I had taken that particular table instead of the next one over where YT was sitting. I still had hope that she would warm up to me, and I didn't want to ruin my image. Plus, the table was full of adults, and for some reason many people seem to feel that a woman is too young if she is half my age. These people need to visit Mexico. Not that I had been successful throughout the morning as I took every opportunity to try and talk to her. I was trying to Mack like Roni, but instead I felt I was coming off like a wet noodle.

The lunch break was ridiculously long, over two hours, especially given that lunch was provided by the hotel, so nobody had to leave. I wouldn't thave minded so much under normal circumstances, but I had taken a second hit before the stupid RP game and was extremely amped. I tore through my lunch and started pacing around the lobby. The wait for the next round seemed unbearable.

I finally managed to settle down, and I parked myself in a quite corner to sim my games. After a while, who came by but MS, looking for a quiet place to make a phone call I guessed. To the best of my knowledge, I had never been in a room alone with MS. Amped as I was, my mind raced with the opportunities. Besides the meth, I was in an altered state for a multitude of reasons. The undercount loss versus Richard, the crappy game against Whitmarsh, my repeated failed attempts to get YT to talk to me. And then here's MS, who just a few hours earlier had completely ignored me when I asked if she had beaten Augustine. Who did she think she was?

I decided to act. I waited 'til I finished the call, and I walked up and cornered her and demanded, "why have you been ignoring me!?"

"What," she replied?

I tried not to sound hostile, and I replied, "Why do you always ignore me? I try to talk to you all the time."

"I don't knoooow you," she said.

"How can you get to know me if we never talk?"

We went back and forth for a bit, and I finally decided it was time to go for the gusto. I gentled grabbed her shoulders, backed her up against the wall, and planted the best kiss I could muster. I swear that I do not know, and I will probably never know, whether she hesitated, like in the movies, before she pushed me away and walked off. The wet noodle rides again.

After three losses, I made up much of the outdrawing that Koenig had bestown upon me with nearly all the power titles, four bingos, and a 78-point (H)AZIEST. My only complain is that I missed the 3x3 with ADEFI?? and the A in the second position. The next day, Augustine couldn't resist trying to solve that puzzle. He did it in seconds, blurting out, "That's easy." Thanks, Augie, for making me feel like a loser.

Against Jan Dixon I suffered five or six vowels in each of my first seven racks. Got screwed. I'd been kicking her ass in club, so I figured she was back to scrounging around for animals to sacrified. That's why little Billy can't find his bunny.

Scott Appel seemed pretty irked when I found a last-minute LIANOID to win against him. If you're reading, Scott, I only leaked 17 equity, so please don't hate me too much.

Scott's buddy Dominic Grillo took up his mantle, however, and he proceeded to draw like gangbusters. Yeah, my misplaying (AX)O* didn't help, but the way the game was going Dominic was going to dominate regardless.

NOTE: I was forced to edit the following anecdote heavily because the other party made me swear that I would not reveal his identity. He also asked me to ask you not to speculate on who it might be. I am committed to accurate blogging, so I need your cooperation in avoiding any gossip.

We finished the day's games, I was in a state of extreme anxiety. I was doing miserably in the tournament, and neither of the two objects of my affection were showing any signs of warming up to me. I needed a release, and I needed more meth. I called XXX and I asked if I could shower in his room so that I could go out and find a strip club somewhere, maybe down in Philly or up in Elizabeth. I'd never gone to Go Go Nadrone's and had been curious to check it out for years.

When I got out of the shower, I threw on my jeans and continued drying off as I walked out into the room, where XXX was on the floor, shirtless, doing XXX. "Dude, do you XXX XXX XXX," I asked. "Weren't you XXX XXX XXX?"

XXX stood up and replied in his usual excited state, "that's okay I'm XXX XXX XXX, and I need to XXX XXX for XXX XXX that XXX XXX." Why XXX feels the need to XXX XXX XXX XXX I'll never know.

"Sure, I said," as I noticed that XXX did indeed have some serious XXX XXX XXX XXX XXX. "Okay, it's my turn to XXX XXX XXX. I can't believe they are XXX XXX."

"Um, okay," XXX replied, a bit sheepish looking. I have to tell you, though--his XXX were XXX XXX.

Here's the thing about meth. Besides amping a person up, meth can also enhance sexual desire. I have to assume that it was the meth, but maybe it was the long string of rejection I'd been experiencing that had left me particularly needy. Who really knows what motivates a person. The upshot is that my hand slowly slid down from XXX's shoulders to his chest and then to his left nipple, where my fingers started to fidget.

XXX quickly said, "hey, what are you doing?" But he did not pull back. I felt like I was at one of those crossroads, one of those decisive moments. Pull back, or go for the gusto. I went for the gusto.

A few hours later, XXX, XXX's roommate, walked into the room. I looked up, and I swear I have never seen a person's face turned so red. XXX stammered something and quickly walked back out. XXX and I both thought he might be going home, since he had already had XXX XXX the previous night because of XXX's XXX.

I said to XXX, "I better go.", and I went out into the hall and called out to XXX. "I was leaving anyway. You can come in." XXX didn't reply--he just looked at me, or rather avoided looking at me, and then he slid past and into the room.

I needed some time to process what had just happened. But all of a sudden I was hungry as fuck, and my head had started to hurt really bad. I went up to a Caribbean spot in Somerset for pig feet (they were excellent, but to cornbread was awful), but even after eating my head continued to hurt. Part of the problem was I'd only slept four hours, but I figured out that I was starting to withdraw. I needed more.

I had no fucking idea how to go about getting meth in Somerset, so I turned to the Internet. It's not like your local deal is advertising on CL, or anything like that, but I had a plan. If you browse through the ads in the "Erotic Services" second, you will see ads for girls that are "420-friendly" or "snow bunnies". These are references to marijuana and cocaine. I figured if I could hook up with one of these girls, she would know a person who knew a person, and so on.

Thing was, after my time with XXX, I wasn't exactly randy like the proverbial cocker spaniel. I didn't want to blow a couple of bills, or even one, on a girl I had no interest in. I was going to have to pull a little trickery to avoid wasting my money.

After dialing no fewer than 30 numbers, I finally found a girl who was in Jersey (I didn't want to drive into the city) and who wanted to "party" (code word for drug use) and who claimed she knew where I could get meth. She was staying at some crappy Super 8 motel in Hackensack near the airport (Teeterboro), and as soon as I arrived things began to go astray. Amber wanted to get paid right away, but I knew better than to trust her. We went back and forth, and when she saw I was ready to leave she finally relented. She didn't want to ride with me, though, and as I followed her I could see her talking on the phone. I had to wonder if she was trying to set me up to get robbed.

I was just being paranoid, though. And it probably wasn't the meth. Just my natural overcautiousness. In this case, there was no setup. We arrived at a plain-looking house in the suburbs (not the projects, either--just a regular middle-class looking residential area). A balding, pudgy man with glasses answered the door and invited us in. I said I was okay out there, and he did not seem to mind. He took my money, came back with a couple of packets, and that was that.

Since Amber had driven her own car, ditching her was really easy. I just followed her until we got to the freeway, and when we got to the next exit I just eased off the gas and cut across two lanes and onto the exit ramp. Easy as pie. A minute later my phone rang, a private number. I ignored. I listened to the message later, and of course it was Amber cursing me out and promising that somebody was going to "fuck [me] up".

Sleep did not come easy that night. Another side-effect of meth is that it can make you paranoid, and I have a tendency to be paranoid anyway. Every sounds was enhanced that night. Every time a car passed by along Route 1, I though it was parking right behind me. Occasionally I heard voices of people walking across the parking lot of the building, and I thought they were talking about me. Twice I heard sirens racing by, and I was sure they were coming for me. And when I got up to kiwi, several times during the night, I thought I saw daemonic shapes moving around through my fogged-up windows. When a bird landed on my hood I nearly jumped out of my skin. It was not a pleasant night.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

It's funny--my dreams under the influence of drugs were no weirder that they usually are. Nothing noteworthy except for the morning's song, Rick James' "Superfreak", except with "girl" replaced by "squirrel". I wish I could figure out what these thoughts are trying to tell me.

Back to the Whole Foods for a scone, juice, and a trip to the bathroom to wash my face and do the rest of my meth. My hands were shaking quite a bit from the withdrawal, so much so that I dropped it twice, and almost into the toilet. Had it fallen in, I would have had a hard, hard decision to make.

The previous day, Augustine Adda had commented that he was looking forward to playing me (no idea why). Unfortunately for him, he didn't have a chance to play me at all, because what we had was a farce, not a game. And this despite my underhanded shenanigans. Augustine made the mistake of walking away from the table while we were picking up tiles. We were down at the end, well away from the directors, and there was nobody at the table next to us. So desperate was I for a win that I, without even thinking about it, dropped a blank into my lap as I was putting tiles back in the back. I scanned quickly with my peripheral vision to see if anybody had noticed, preparing myself to pick the blank up if I had been detected. Nothing. Between the meth and the anxiety, my heart was pumping so hard when Augustine returned that I could hardly keep my hands steady. I managed to win the draw for first, and I figured between that and the hidden blank, I had to win. I had wanted to start with a five or six-tile play so I could more easily feign dropping my new tiles into my lap, but I was stuck with AAEHRUU. I didn't think I could pull off retreiving the blank during an exchange, so I just played EAU. I had to wait until my next turn to retrieve my blank. By that time, Augustine had already bingoed, and I was on the run. I never managed to get the bingo down. What a waste.

Sam didn't go anywhere while picking up the tiles, so I had no opportunity to a hide. Instead I employed a different method against him, banking points. I had noticed from our previous two games that Sam did not seem to readd all our scores like many of the top players. I was thus able to undercount each of my plays by 1-4 points, with the intention of being at least 20 off by the end of the game. Of course, this ended up being moot when Sam went on to draw both blanks and all four eses. For the second time, I went bingoless. But what was worse that by losing to a child I had finally completed the trifecta--I had lost to children, women, homosexuals, biosexuals, Jews, religious people, blacks, Africans, Samoans, fat people, smokers, lawyers, wage slaves, poor people, a hobo (well, not really--just homeless), and, most embarassingly of all, the one NSA player who also happens to be a rodeo clown (I so fucking hate them). Note that I intentionally left Asians off my list. There is no shame to losing to an Asian, as they are inherently better at everything.

Marjorie Schoneboom was having, as she put it, her worst tournament in a long time. She was thus so demoralized that she never noticed that I played with eight tiles on my rack for some of the game. The extra tile improved my chances of drawing a blank or S, at which point I'd have to drop back down to seven tiles in order to bingo, but the game worked out differently. I took a lead with PROL(I)X for 58, and with the board tight I figured I might as well drop back down to seven tiles. Then Marjorie managed to bingo with the sweet find, REA(D)O(P)TED, but I had a good comeback and retained the lead. I was able to play the game straight, and I managed to bingo without cheating, but with some weirdness. I had to let Marjorie get away with (I)MIN in order to play my VENUSES, but I emphatically asserted that her play was phony as I did it. I did not want anybody to think that I had any doubts whatsoever about that kind of four. There's only one set of 4s that I am weak on, but I'm not going to reveal what that is.

Dominic once again in the KOTH round, and I saved the best for last. When JG originally posted his now-infamous blog entry, I was unable to visualize exactly what PH was allegedly doing. It wasn't until a few weeks ago when some anonymous player posted YouTube video that I was able to see exactly how to pick out the tiles I wanted. I practiced this a few times, and I got good enough that I was able to pull all the power tiles but the Z and an S, and I won by almost 200.

Not that it mattered. With Dominic's rating in the mix twice, perhaps my expectation was just 8 games. But I had still only won 7, unless you counted the Richard debacle. So after the awards ceremony I went back to Scott and Lynda to see if I could get them to reconsider the ruling, perhaps taking it to the Advisory Board or something, before the tournament was rated. They were admittedly understanding, but they said they couldn't hold up the process for this. I was still pretty amped, and also angry at having been outdrawn those two games that day, and so I walked away in a huff, but not before grabbing a chair and throwing it across the room. The chair almost hit Connie, and that pretty much sobered me up right away. I quickly apologized and left right away so that I would not seem more threatening than I really was.

By 4:00 PM I was crashing pretty hard, and as soon as I got home I went to sleep. Several hours later I woke up with my head pounding, but what hurt worse was a deep sense of sorrow and loneliness. I craved more meth, but what I really craved was the touch of a warm body. I wanted to rest my head on XXX's shoulders once more. I wanted to feel MS's roughish lips again, and for her not to push me away this time. I wanted even just a smile from YT, just an acknowdgement that I wasn't too old, that I actually had a shot.

Monday, March 31, 2008

I woke up feeling worse than I could ever remember having felt. I felt really lucky that I was back in Malvern, well far away from the city, Philadelphia, where I felt my chances of scoring were unlikely. If I could just go about my work day, I was sure that within a couple of days the craving for another hit would subside.

I needed an oil change before the weekend's trip to West Virginia (assuming my driving partner would even want to go after learning about how I behaved in Princeton--she might legitimately feel unsafe). I left my car at STS and walked over to Nudy's for some French toast. I guess the low from meth withdrawal makes you really depressed, and leads to dark thoughts. As I walked back along route 30 a semi truck came over the hill and towards me. I couldn't help but wonder what it would feel like if I darted out in front of it. Would I feel anything? Would it hurt?

I found that I couldn't actually imagine being hit by the truck. I have a pretty good imagination, but I just couldn't visualize it. What I could imagine was the possibility that I couldn't actually be killed. In the alley, Tom told Michael that the Island would not let him die. Well, what if there is a similar supernatural force that will not let me die until I have accomplished my purpose?

Worked sucked hard. Twelve cups up coffee (up from my usual two) plus eight fake Excedrin could not make the pressure in my head go away.

Club was just as bad. Lost all six games for the first time. But the worst of it was that YT did not show up. I guess she had gotten enough practice now that Princeton was over, or maybe she was just uncomfortable with the things I had said to her in Princeton and wanted to wait a few weeks for me to leave the east coast.

I got home around 11:00 desperate to talk to somebody, so I called XXX. He did not seem ready yet to talk about what had happened between us, so I tried to get him to give me MS's phone number. I wanted to apologize for forcing myself upon her and prempt a possible assault charge. XXX wouldn't give me the phone number though, and I got really pissed at him for this. After the experience we had shared, you would think he'd be more forthcoming. It's not like we were both going to abandon girls after what had happened, so it's not like he felt threatened by my continued attempts a seducing MS. Or did he?

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Realized that the biggest flaw with my April Fool's blog was that I had no way to know how many people fell for it. I heard reports of jaws dropping and certain people believing this anecdote or that anecdote, but I wish I could have gotten some comprehensive data.


CON MAN: I hope the date has more to do with this post then the facts, but good read either way.
cesar: this HAS to be an april fool's joke! hilarious post.
Amber: How could you?
Ed: Yes, but was it The Worst Toilet in New Jersey?


Early Bird

#1 - Berg    
--- (R)EIFY  
1.3 UNH(A)IR (D)HURNA (too dangerous even if I knew it)
3.2 AXE(L) AXA(L),(R)ELAX (ignore b/c it opens board)
10 (F)ROW  
0 BALL  
0 ZA(R)F  
0 OE  
1.3 OA(T)  
0 BEAN  
16 QUI(T)E T(AcONITE) hook
1 TEG ditto
#2 - Bihlmeyer    
0 THY  
3.5 I(K)AT  
2.7 GR(IT)H  
8.8 PLET* obligatory Bihlmeyer phony
0 QIS  
0 BIZ  
11.9 GI(N)  
3.8 RIF  
0* VEtO  
0* (TO)E disregard bingos b/c Joe can bingo out
5.2* T(U)B(A) (D)UE,AUTEURs (didn't see it, but ditto)
#3 - Whitmarsh    
0 AFF  
8.1 AJEE  
1.3 Qi  
0 P(R)ONoUNS  
1.6 HOG  
8.4 TILE  
6.1 VITT(A)  
0.7 OWN  
1.9 (A)IDE  
58 lose turn (KRUS(E)*/(OCREATE)S*)  
#4 - Koenig    
10.3 AZ(O)TIC  
11 HA(Y)  
2.3 JO(e)  
2.6 VEND  
15 Q(A)T G(L)OM/(ZA)G/O(S)/M(E)
18.3 V(R)OOM VOG(I)E/(H)A
0.3 F(A)BLE  
9 M(I)G  
0* UP  
19 FA trying to leave two lines
0* IN(K)  
0 CARE  
0 ION  
#5 - Berg    
0 KEX  
0 RIT(Z)Y  
43.5 lose challenge ((K)INDLERS)  
9.1 OIL  
36.1 lose turn ((E)UPNOEAL*)  
0 OPA(Q)UE  
13 C(R)IB  
0 FE  
0 (O)VaL  

1 - W - 3.3
2 - W - 8.7 (122.1)
3 - W - 12.3 (160.5)
4 - L - 6.3 (87.8)
5 - W - 8.8 (123.3)

Avg: 7.9

Main Event

#1 - Lehrer    
0 AEON  
0 rELIGIO(N)  
0 AX  
0 YAWP  
4.2 ORBITE(D)  
7.7 N(I)LS N(I)L (leaves the S hook for Elana with 3 eses in bag)
36.8 lose turn ((MANQUE)S*)  
0 KIN  
6.2 VINE VIM (gives Elana opening)
0* (T)AHR  
#2 - Tangredi    
0 OF  
0 (G)EUM  
0.4* PANDOR(E)  
0 SOCIeTA(L)  
2.3 -FQ Q(I)
0 PFUI  
2.6 WIT  
18.4 (W)E  
2.6 WO(O)  
0 OU(R)  
25 (V)ID VI(V)ID
#3 - Phillips    
0 BID  
4.1 RADIO  
4.1 KIN(G)  
2 EX  
0 (A)ZO  
0 MEOU  
3.8 STATuES  
49 TEN  
#4 - Brook    
4.3 UBBELTs  
2.1 ZAP  
0 FA(N)NY  
4.3 SANITY  
3.1 (W)EEK  
13.3 (C)OOEE  
0 BOU(N)CE  
0 UT  
#5 - Whitmarsh    
0 (Z)EBU  
47.7 lose turn ((R)ADARMEN*) MANDRA(K)E
37.7 AM  
43.2 lose turn (JA(K)ED*)  
0 JER(I)D  
4.5 YID  
0 AGON  
0 OXO  
0 CANEs  
8.8 (Y)E  
17.9 AA  
0 P(U)N  
1 (QI)S  
#6 - Popper    
0 HAD  
10.9 REM  
1 NORM  
12.6 PILI PANI(n)I,LIPI(n),PLAI(n),LAPI(n)
7.7 BEGI(n)  
0 YON(I)S  
8.5 A(C)ED  
29 V(ID)  
55 FUN fail to block HASTIER/E(NORM)
0 BO  
#7 - Koenig    
5.4 THEI(N)  
0 OLIO(S)  
0 (V)AIR  
0* QU(E)Y  
0.2* (T)OFU  
16.4 DAWtIEs  
#8 - Dixon    
0 YUCA  
1.1 FOU  
1.3 GEUM  
13.3 VO(G)IE O(G)IVE (too risky to open triple)
0* EEL  
12.8 A(V)E  
8.1 P(O)RN  
5.6 QI  
5 EH  
#9 - Appel    
0.3 MOUE  
3.2 ROVE  
0 UNC(O)  
7.5 XI defense
0 FR(E)SH  
6.5 GAMB  
0* LIDO  
0.1 IONS  
0 (O)I  
#10 - Grillo    
6.3 -BGQ -BQ (GINST)
36.7 lose turn ((AX)O*)  
3.9 VOTE  
0 A(m)OK  
5.1 RIN  
0 FI(Z)  
0 (S)OWED  
3.2 M(ANY) Hail Mary fish for (F)IGURATE
0 JUG(s)  
10 LO(F)TIER didn't block REI(V)E
#11 - Adda    
9.6 EAU -AUU
2.9 (J)URA  
14.8 HEP P(U)GH (leave EDRS)
2.2 (A)WARDS  
0.3 FILA  
42.2 lose turn (B(I)OTE*)  
4.8 BO(D)  
7.9 GEMO(T)  
1 (V)ENDUE  
3.5 F(AWN)Y  
5.7 GO  
4.4 (M)OTS  
0 TIGeR  
#12 - Rosin    
0 HOPE  
1.3 TEEL  
1.3 HI  
0 LIEU  
0* REIF  
6.8 (LI)NK KNAR (unsure)
0* RA(J)  
0 ACRE  
11.2 QI  
0 BEG  
32.3 lose challenge (DOOZeRS)  
9 (O)XTER  
0 LEE  
#13 - Schoneboom    
5.2 AW(N)Y  
3.1 PROL(I)X P(I)X (when will I understand Quackle???)
3.4 GOD DOG (why give Marje a hook???)
1.2 FR(E)E(R)  
0 (LO)VAT  
9.3 COO keep board closed!
19.5 A(N)I very weak defense
#14 - Grillo    
0 WOT  
0.5 OSTIOlE  
0.4 Q(I) Qu(E)NCH
2.5 H(E)RBY B(E)NCH (leave RY???),(S)YNCH (not best)
1.1 DEF  
14.3 (C)UM kill 3x3
16.3 D(I)NG SC(E)NDiNG
0 EXCUSiN(G)  
2.2 AJEE  
32.5 WO ALOW/A(S)/L(I)/O(D)/W(E)
2.1 AA LAARI (unsure)

1 - W - 8.7 (113.1)
2 - L - 6.9 (96.6)
3 - W - 10.3 (134.2)
4 - W - 6.3 (81.4)
5 - L - 10.9 (163.2)
6 - L - 9.2 (129.2)
7 - W - 11.6 (139)
8 - L - 6.3 (81.4)
9 - W - 1.4 (17.6)
10 - L - 5.8 (74.9)
11 - L - 7.6 (99.3)
12 - L - 3.0 (41.3)
13 - W - 4.9 (63.3)
14 - W - 2.7 (34.6)

Avg: 6.8

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