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Things which suck and things which do not suck:

I haven’t written in an age for two reasons in particular. #1 would be that my computer is still in the shop, so I only get the chance to update if I am at Joel’s house, and up until this past Tuesday, his father and stepmother were visiting & staying with him, so I think it would have been kind of rude of me to go hole up in front of the computer and write some dumb blog entry. #2 reason is that I’ve just been unnecessarily cranky of late, and cranky does not engender entertaining or even tolerable writing from me. If I were to write while in a cranky mood (as I used to circa 2003-5) you would want to hunt me down and beat the snotty out of me.

I am mostly over the crankitude now I think, though one last bleat of unrest will follow, then it’s back to the regularly scheduled self-indulgent silliness.

Things which suck:

I am heartily of the opinion that this world is too goddamn loud and that intentionally adding layers of “background noise” to it only makes matters worse (and is reasonable cause for a hissyfit). White noise, in particular, irks my ire. I have the distinct misfortune of sitting directly beneath a section of exposed ductwork very near the airhandling machinery for the section of the building in which I work. The continual roar of the fans above my head drives me to a state of mush-brained madness by the end of each business day. My office is relentlessly chic in its architectural design, so much of the ceiling is laid open to expose the guts and girders overhead; ductwork, wiring, and plumbing are seen here and there amongst islands of suspended ceiling tiles, signs, and purely decorative gridworks of tubing and polished metal screens. I suppose it’s aesthetically interesting and such, but I’d frankly prefer a bit of buffer between me and the noisyassed HVAC system.

The principal mercy is that this place doesn’t do Muzak or any other manner of intercom-distributed noise. Somebody tried to do a bit of that pre-Christmas, but rumblings of discontent and mutiny arose, and so the Holly-Jolly went back to wherever it came from.

I never have been a big fan of music as background noise. I like some music, and I like it plenty, but I really only want to hear it when I want to listen to it and have the leisure to pay attention to it. I find music as an ambient noise to be very distracting and annoying, especially when whatever power chose the selection chose something that I specifically loathe. Right now, my especial objects of dread are threefold: #1 Country & Western, #2 masturbatory rhythm & blues, #3 any station that puts me in danger of having to hear Billy Joel/Elton John. I’m also not a big fan of the dated, euro-trash unh-tiss uhn-tiss “dance” music that some of the trendier hairdressers in the area like to blast out via speakers that play outside the doors of their establishments.

Really, though I know musical tastes are subjective, and everyone thinks everyone else’s music sucks. I think the most logical, polite, and thoughtful solution would be to do away with “background noise” music in public places. I’d LOVE the chance to buy my groceries without thinking, “shut the hell up Elton John, you mawkish, goggle-eyed dweeb” at least once per trip.

Things which do not suck:

There’s a florist’s shop in midtown here called House of Flowers, but which used to be called Ed’s Dainty Corsages. I ask you! Can you even begin to imagine a better name for a flower shop? There’s a glorious incongruity in the pairing of the name Ed with the word “dainty.” Eds don’t usually do dainty, but this particular Ed must have.

Christi and I used to ride past there and wonder what motives led Ed to open a flower shop and bestow upon it that particular name. Obviously it’s a name from another era. We no longer live in Dainty times, and the word has come to carry connotations from the old, oblique advertising copy for feminine hygiene products which alluded to “personal daintiness.”

I really think the largest pity of this shop changing hands (or changing names at least) is the loss of a business whose extraordinary name so distinctly comes from another era. Kansas City has an historical tendency to cut ties with its history with predictable and cyclical regularity and many striking features aren’t left to stay around long enough to become quaint. I never got a chance to take a picture of the place, but I found somebody on Flickr who had. Here’s another. The building is now called “House of Flowers” and is painted gaily with gigantic flowers. I’ll take a picture of it soon.

One of the principal benefits of living in a less-than-fashionable section of town is that not so many places feel the need keep up with the times. There’s an old Dairy Queen on Independence Ave. that has changed very little since the early 1960s when it was built. There’s another burger joint closer to my house, called the Humdinger, which retains a significant portion of its midcentury styling, as well.

When the weather gets a little warmer, I’m going to support this local business by getting an ice-cream. Most of what they serve is burgers & deep-fried breaded miscellany, none of which I am excited to eat, but from time to time I do like a nice ‘cone, so I’ll check it out then and if they are willing, get some interior shots.

2 Responses to “A kick in the butt (if I don't post now, goodness knows when I *will*)”

  1. Julie Stark says:

    Oh Michelle, a girl after my own heart! Noise has been a constant complaint of mine lately too. It’s wearing me out. I’m sorry you’re in a cranky mode – I don’t ‘spose this lovely winter weather has anything to do with it? Ed’s Dainty Corsages is a phenomenal name. If I’d bought that place, I would have kept the name.

  2. meetzorp says:

    It was pretty much just garden-variety misanthropy which had precipitated my grouchiness. I’m actually kind of an introvert, and I wear myself out behaving in socially-acceptable ways when I’d rather just hunker down and talk to nobody. I was in one of those “hunker down” phases for quite a while the past couple of months and was having a hard time “playing nicely with others.”

    I’m doing better now that the weather is nicer and I’ve been getting more longer rides. The more I ride, the better I am at getting along!

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