“Never drive a car when you’re dead.”

Yup, that’s good advice from Mr. Waits.

Warning, I’m in an odd mood, which does not bode well for you Reader.

I want to talk about the Cut Up technique. William S. Burroughs gave it a name. Hugh MacDairmid used it extensively. DJ Spooky uses it… another disciple of Burroughs.

In a nutshell, the Cut Up Technique is taking one piece of work, slicing it up, rearranging it, and creating a wholly new work. Burroughs did this by folding papers and using scissors. MacDairmid was said to simply slice off lines of his never ending poem and give them out like Tic-Tacs. Spooky takes fragments of songs and pieces them together.

Offices are perfect places to practice and witness the Cut Up Technique. Take, for example, my office. Next door we have two 23-ish year olds from Maryland. They work with yet another recent grad of Maryland. They provide Ken and I endless amusement, listening to their conversations. Recently, I walked into my office to see Ken, quite pale. When I inquired, Ken swore he just heard one of them say, “I was like, Oh My God!” Thin walls and loud neighbors equals endless fun.

The following is a rough Cut Up from the offices on the Friday after Valentines Day:

So he got me a bunch of presents like a scavenger hunt in the mall with cards at each store on each present and I got really sexy underwear. Sure. No, I don’t have a running database. So I was modeling them for him in the living room, just my boots and the new bra and panties. Is it turned on? Are you sure? Yeah. So we had really good sex on the pool table and then went out and had some dessert with pears or something or other. No can’t make that, maybe Thursday. Well, he doesn’t really have a dining room table so he put a plastic table cloth over a couple of boxes and we sat in plastic lawn furniture and he made chicken alfredo and the pasta wasn’t really done but that was okay ‘cuz I told him he could make up for it with unexpected gifts throughout the year.

As my boss says, in reference to Ken and I, “If you can’t hold six or seven conversations with two people at the same time, just don’t go in there.”

Changing gears: I just learned that an acquaintance of mine died in the World Trade Center. His name was Garth Feeney and he graduated a year before me at Penn. I was flipping through the alumni magazine and saw his name in the obits. I stuck out because you rarely ever meet any Garths. (In fact, the only other two Garths I know of are musicians: Garth Brooks and Garth Hudson… bonus point if you know who Garth Hudson is.) At any rate, Garth was at a breakfast meeting at the Windows on the World. 9/11 seemed so distant. The war still seems distant. Just an observation.

Remind me not to become a heroin addict

So last week, I had a headache.

Seems minor enough. Just a headache.

But it grew more intense and moved a bit around my head. By the end of the day this mobile command center of pain had centered itself over my right eye. I got home, swallowed a couple asprin, and tried to ignore the searing pain.

The next morning the mobile command center of pain has shurnk a bit, was less intense. I thought I had beaten it… oh no, the headache was just sleeping. By the time it woke up, it was around lunch. And this is when I realized why I was in such pain… I hadn’t had any caffeine in a few days.

It seems that may usual coffe intake had slowly crept upwards. I think I had level out at around three cups (large ones) per day. This isn’t a huge amount of coffeee, I admit, but it was more than I usually drank.

And now my body did not have any and was grumpy.

So I was left with a decision: try and push through this and remind my body what it was like without caffeine or just have a Coke and a smile.

I like pushing my body around a bit. So I decided to grin and bear it. Which, writing this now, was a good decision, but during the process was an extremely painful one.

If kicking caffeine is that hard, I am not planning on developing any new tough habits.

Didn’t see that one coming

Sunday was a great day if you were a bookie or a Patriots fan. It was a great Superbowl. It was a refreshing non-blowout of a game. It was actually a game you had to watch all of to see what was going to happen. At times I found myself yelling at the Fox coverage for saying things like, “No team has ever come back from a deficit so large in Superbowl history.” When it comes to snatching defeat from the jaws of victory, Boston sports teams have a knack for it. Thankfully, our bargain basement backup QB did the job like a pro – that is the way to end a football game. (Now, if the LSFL could only play games so well.)

I want to state now for the entire Tuesday Night crowd… I have no ties, neither political, nor financial, to Enron. I was, at no time, a political consultant for them. I have always thought that digital marketplaces were a sham. I think it will be interesting to see where the ropes lead when the government starts pulling on the whole Enron tangled knot. If the GAO and Sen. Waxman have their ways, this spring and summer could be filled with Enrongate, and that is guaranteed good political fun on both sides of the aisle.

Meanwhile, Philips is fighting you and I. Yes, that Dutch company that everybody loves is threatening to sue the record labels over their use of copy-protection in their CDs. The beauty is that these new copy-protected CDs that Universal and others are churning out don’t work with computers and some normal cd players as well… but guess what they aren’t really CDs. Philips is going to sue because what Universal is producing isn’t technically a CD; these copy-protected CDs do not meet the standards to be a CD. That standard is owned by Philips and Sony. Philips would force the record labels to print a label on their protected CDs warning the consumer that the CDs won’t work and aren’t really CDs after all. Even better, Philips has stated that they will begin producing CD burners and players that can overcome the copy protection. Eat that RIAA!

Well, I am headed to King of Prussia, PA. Yup, it’s time again to play with an unnamed customer near Philadelphia. I have been trying to quickly research what are the largest malls in America. I know that they Mall of America is the largest. But after that, I have no idea. I do know what the KoP mall is very very very big. Here’s their directory. I did get to rent a big FUV for the drive up there. I didn’t realize it until I got into this Explorer that each SUV is sold with a “drive like an asshole” licenses… I’ll put it to good use, I’m sure.