Friday, January 13, 2006

Paraskavedekatriaphobia

  • Remember when you were younger and Friday the 13th had some tinge of stupid excitement attached to it? I remember being immersed in a feeling of know-it-all-induced drunkenness in the halls of Olson Junior High School*, with each of us shouting the obvious at one another in conspiratorial tones.
    "You know what today is, don't you?"
    "I know what today is."
    "You know what that means!"
    "Yeah!"
    Actually, we didn't know what it meant, and it meant nothing. But we bounced around in the perception that it was somehow different from all other days, as if we were living on the edge simply by showing up for school.
    I was thinking about that this morning. The only significance Friday the 13th has for me now is that it is three days from pay day.

  • "Right now I'm going on about 1,000 milligrams of carisporadol, 1,000 milligrams of Vicodin, 1,600 milligrams of ibuprofen, and about 750 milliliters of sake." -- that's a classic quote from Landeros.
    Landeros (the efficient and level-headed producer mentioned in this story) called me last night amid a sort of "crisis of faith" (referencing job No. 13 -- the day after I walked out, the executive producer of the morning show turned to Landeros and said, "I understand your friend has suffered a crisis of faith"). He had cleaned out his desk at work that morning and had not yet decided whether he would be showing up the next day. After a long conversation about life and the soul-wearying nature of the news business, Landeros was able to solidify his sense that it's time to move on from this career. Now all he has to do is start his life over.
    Landeros is a master bull-shitter and he chose to lay it on thick in thanking me for serving as a sounding board.
    "Cope, I cannot think of one other person on this earth whom I could have called who could have helped me through all this," he gushed.
    "Landeros, I've told you to quit your job and walk away from you career."
    "I know, man, and I cannot thank you enough."
    "OK. But you're not sleeping on our couch."
    The residual effect of this conversation is that I had a lot of trouble getting out of bed this morning. Six months seems like a long time from that perspective.
    From the perspective of needing to save money, secure student loans, improve the quality of my Welsh, move my belongings across an ocean and find a place to live in Cardiff, however, it is not nearly enough time.

  • If you're interested, here's the wee bio I had to come up with last night. I still may use Goo's suggestion of describing myself as "delicious and nutritional."
    Chris Cope, once described as "the funniest person I know" by a high school friend, is a humor columnist for the Internet Broadcasting network -- a collection of more than 70 news websites in cities across the United States, including New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles. He is the recipient of several writing awards, most notably an entire bag of candy won for a poem written in 10th-grade English.
    Chris is a fluent speaker of Welsh -- also known as Cymraeg -- the native language of Wales. Chris is a sort of living party trick there because his Welsh is completely self-taught and he has no previous connection to the country. He has gained a degree of popularity through his Welsh-language blog "Dim Braidd Yn Diddorol, Ond Golygus" (Not Terribly Interesting, But Handsome). He has been mentioned in several Welsh-language publications and has been interviewed by the BBC on a number of occasions. There is even talk of a documentary. In July, he will be moving to Wales to further study the language at Cardiff University.
    Chris enjoys drinking beer and talking absolute nonsense for really long periods of time. He vindicates these activities by running and playing rugby. He is presently training to take part in the Cardiff marathon.
    Chris is wholly undeserving of his beautiful and long-suffering wife, Rachel, to whom he has been married since 1999. He also maintains an English-language blog: http://chriscope.blogspot.com/


    *Ridiculously tedious fact: Olson's school mascot was Loki, the Norse god of mischief. Loki's gate-crashing a dinner at Valhalla is thought by some to be the origin of the superstition over the number 13. Loki was eventually removed as Olson's mascot after local religious conservatives complained.
  • 5 comments:

    The editor said...

    "The only significance Friday the 13th has for me now is that it is three days from pay day."

    Actually, because the 16th is a holiday, you get paid before that. Since you don't get paid on the weekends, either, you're flush, baby.

    Why do you think I surrounded by bags of blow and high class call girls right now?

    OldHorsetailSnake said...

    NOW I know whom you remind me of: The Cardiff Giant. I don't know why this hasn't dawned on me previously. The Giant was awfully pretty, like you.

    Ryan said...

    Loki can't get no respect.

    mona said...

    Friday the 13th and a seemingly full moon- twas a night to remember

    lindsay said...

    Wait, Olson dropped the Loki? I had to make a plastic keychain in 7th grade with a Loki. Now it just feels like a cheap sham.
    Stupid conservatives!