Sunday, July 12, 2009

“There’s plenty of blame to go around…”

The above quote is from my old boss, the wily and parsimonious Robert Anderson, a Southern gentleman (in every sense of the phrase) who employed me as his night auditor at the Best Western he owned in Savannah from 1990-92. It didn’t take me long to learn during my sojourn there that any time a masterful f**k-up occurred at the BWC (the “C” stood for “Central”) you could have hired the most skilled lawyer in the world to defend you (“Your honor, my client wasn’t anywhere near the hotel when the fire broke out…”) and Mr. A (as we called him) would find some way to parcel the blame about among his employees equally. So when things went awry, my immediate fallback position was: “Yes, this wouldn’t have happened had I taken the proper steps to prevent it…what those steps are, I have no idea—but give me an hour and I’ll come up with something.”

As such, I must shoulder most of the blame for the fallow fields here at Thrilling Days of Yesteryear of late, and it’s kind of odd that I use that term because what’s been occupying most of my copious free time is an innocent little application at Facebook entitled FarmTown. For those of you not familiar with the insidious social network and its many “apps,” FarmTown allows you to get in touch with your inner Eddie Albert and start your own farm, plantin’ ‘taters and tomaters and benefiting from your labors. This game fascinates me to no end (I even named my domicile “The Haney Place” as a tribute to my favorite bucolic sitcom)—and I’ll be damned if I can figure out why; it may have something to do with the fact that I have virtually no life and in fact, derived a great deal of satisfaction today when I reached the lofty “Just Brilliant” plateau in the game that now allows me access to the seeds needed to plant carrots. I spent the better part of a half-hour planting both carrots and peas…because these Southern Chinese takeout joints who toss them willy-nilly into their fried rice need to get them from somewhere. When I took a picture of my farm to show off to the friends actually paying attention to my Facebook babblings, my esteemed blogging colleague Tom Sutpen asked if FarmTown was anything like another popular app, “Mafia Wars”—a game that allows you to get in touch with your inner Donnie Brasco. Tom admitted that the very concept of Mafia Wars terrifies the sh*t out of him, because he’s not entirely unconvinced they’re not using it to recruit people into the Cosa Nostra. (I didn’t help matters much by telling him that FarmTown is an exercise set up to transition us onto these collective farms I keep hearing disgruntled conservatives complain are just around the corner, courtesy of President Obama.)

The Facebook apps are what make FB so damn addictive; they have several that allow you to send libations of an alcoholic nature to your buddies, and it wasn’t until I glanced casually at my profile page that I noticed all I seemed to do while on “the Book” is drink and pass out…er, drinks to my mutual acquaintances—prompting Toby O’Brien to dub me “Facebook’s Bartender.” (Let me just say for the record that if Facebook truly considers introducing such a position, I’m ready to hit the ground running…and I have the references to boot.) But what I think is truly remarkable about Facebook—and I’ll try to state this in a positive way—is that it allows you to hook up with people you haven’t seen since high school…and demonstrates that sometimes the irony is so heavy around here you have to wear a hard-hat. Allow me to provide you with an amusing example (well, I thought it was amusing): earlier this week, I sent a “friend request” to an old classmate and was astonished when she accepted my invitation because, offline and in the real world, she never gave me the time of day during our halcyon days in high school. Contrast this with another former female classmate, of whom I sent two requests and was rebuffed both times. A third female friend (in addition to my pal HouseT) suggests I may have done something to the dame to tick her off—but if I have, a) I don’t remember what the slight was and b) couldn’t really give a damn. (It’s just the irony of the situation that’s making me laugh.)

Okay, so enough whining about Facebook. I was kept pretty busy the past several days with an outside project or two, running some errands (a trip to Publix, which netted me a veritable feast of Stouffer’s and Banquet frozen food dinners…yes, I have simple tastes) and posting some DVDs on eBay to keep Monsieur Wolf from my door for another month (if you’re interested, click here). I acknowledge that I’ve really been slacking off as of late, and it is my solemn vow to have at least something up of substance (keep in mind, however, that this is my blog I’m talking about) other than lame comic strips every day for the rest of the month. (“Baby step to four o’clock…baby step to four o’clock…”) As always, I appreciate your patience and encouragement of my behavior.


Toby O'B said...

I've got a friend who wants to see Mafia Wars and Farm Town combined; that way he's got something to plant in his fields along with the vegetables.....

Bill Crider said...

I gotta admit that your farm looks great, whereas mine looks like something along Tobacco Road. But it's not gonna get any better.