Tag Archives: Project X

Back to the Future

As someone pointed out recently on Facebook, we are now living in the era depicted as the far-off future in the Back To The Future movies. Weird, huh? Remember when July of 2012 seemed like, well, twenty-plus years away? Man, time really does fly, and nothing reminds you of it more than attending your 25th high school reunion.

That’s right, the weekend I’d been dreading and dieting for — sadly, Project X went out the window and stayed out most of the weekend — happened last weekend, and the good news is, I survived. Actually, I had a blast. I didn’t attend my 20th reunion, so, I don’t have a frame of reference here, but, my tenth sucked ass. Seriously, it was terrible. Everyone was showing off their degrees, their fancy new jobs, and just like everyone else, all I wanted to do was win the “Most Unusual Career” award.

I know it sounds stupid now, but, I had recently sold a couple of scripts and I was obsessed with winning that stupid award. And then I won it and nothing changed. Nobody cared that I was a professional motion picture screenwriter except me. And, honestly, even I didn’t care that much at that point. It was so lame. And on top of all that, the actual event was super boring and they didn’t even play 80’s music!

So, when the 20th rolled around and we already had plans to be in Graceland for Elvis Week 2007, I figured I wasn’t missing much, so, we skipped it. The people I know who went said it was pretty lame too, so, I guess people were still preening and trying to one-up one another. You know, by like lusting after cheesy awards and shit. How embarrassing…

But by the 25th, well, let me tell ya, nobody cares what you do or where you live, all they wanna do is party down and reminisce about the old days. There are no more egos, almost everyone is fatter (thank God!) and way older looking than you remember, but, seriously, the best part about it was that nobody cares about any of that high school bullshit that used to seem so damned important. All that mattered last weekend was that you were healthy and alive, the rest of it just kind of faded away in the ether like smoke from a clove cigarette.

Another cool thing about the weekend is that there were actually two separate events on Saturday night. The official 25th High School Reunion and a smaller, less-formal multi-year gathering organized by the drama mags at a bar downtown. I was never in drama, but, my brother and many of our good friends lived and died by the drama mag code of honor, so, we ditched out of the official party early and headed downtown to join the fun.

We missed everything but the tail end of the official drama mag party, but, luckily, caught up with the gang just as they were heading to the “after-party” at the home of one of my oldest childhood friends. So, we hopped back in the car and headed to Safeway for booze — we bought wine coolers for old times sake, and lemme tell ya, time has not been kind to Bartles & James. Seriously, cough medicine has more subtlety of flavor. Yikes! — and then descended upon Susan’s house in a swarm.

The party itself was kind of a blur of laughter and crazy drama mag antics. We ate, we drank, we talked and even though I didn’t get nearly as drunk as I would have liked to — um, hello, I am a father now — spending time with people who knew you when was kind of magical. It really was…

Of course, getting back in sync with real life once we returned home has been brutal — let’s just say it’s been a long week with lots of sleep-deprived temper tantrums, fits of rage and screaming, and that’s just on my end –but, sometimes, the memories of a really amazing weekend can get you through anything.

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My Time

Spent Saturday ringing in the 80th birthday of my Grandmother with family and friends. The party itself was great, lots of food, retro candy bars, pink lemonade, sweet-ass cupcakes and entirely way too many songs sung by my aunts and uncles. Yep, you heard me right, during the speechifying portion of the party, several of the children sang their tributes to my Grandma and it was…well, kind of a freak show.

It’s not to say they can’t sing, because some of them totally can, but, wow…watching these grown-ass men and women duke it out for their solo in the spotlight was beyond unsavory. Fearful that one of his siblings might be getting more attention than himself, one of my uncles actually started juggling in the middle of the after-party at my Grandma’s house. Juggling! He even brought his own juggling clown bowling pins and shit. Like I said…total freak show.

Anyway, at that same after-party I struck up a conversation with one of my singing aunts (who is usually my favorite of the freak show faction of the family) and told her how great she looked. “Have you lost weight?” I asked. “Yes, almost 25 pounds!” She purred back. I pressed her further for details — which wasn’t hard, considering how much this aunt likes to talk, especially about herself — and she explained that she too was on Project X.

Hearing this, I got very excited and told her that Mrs. Yeti and I were trying really hard to stick to the tenets of Project X ourselves. Hearing this, my Aunt stopped cold, quickly scanned my body from head to toe and said: “Well, when it’s your time, you’ll stick to the diet.” She then leaned in real close, put a hand on each of my shoulders and said: “But, hey, you’re good as you are right now too.”

Silence. I just stood there for a stunned beat, staring at my aunt. Did that big old pot just call my kettle ass fat? I mean, wow, if she’s this nice when I compliment her, just imagine what she’d be like if I said something mean. Of course, I knew her heart was in the right place and that she didn’t mean to sound like a smug, little, newly-thin bitch, but, unfortunately, that’s exactly what she sounded like. And, instead of thinking of some pithy comeback all I did was grumble silently to myself, for like, fifteen minutes straight, while she spouted off all the great things that have happened to her since she lost the weight. Seriously, she was giving me recipes and shit. It was brutal.

Luckily I was pulled away to the living room at that point by Mrs. Yeti (good save, sweetie!) so, I never got the chance to punch my aunt in her newly flat gut or lay her low with some snappy, withering comeback. But, trust me, I’m working on it, and the next time we meet in the field of battle, dear Auntie, I won’t be so easily defeated.

In the meantime, back to Project X. One week to go till the reunion and whether it’s “my time” or not, I’m gonna lose me some more weight…if for no other reason than to shove it down my Aunt’s warbling gullet. Ah, ain’t family grand?

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Getting back up…

I’m probably totally mangling the quote, but, someone once said something along the lines of: “It’s not how we fall that defines us, but, what we do after we get back up.” Whatever the exact wording is, that has been my mantra this week as I try to get back on track with Project X.

Yes, it’s true, I fell off the wagon last week. Big time. Truth be told, I’ve kind of had one foot off the wagon for a couple of weeks now. That’s not to say I wasn’t still trying to lose weight and eat healthier, I just wasn’t as focused as I’d been before. I’m not blaming Greta, but, man, she has been keeping me busy lately, and, unfortunately, when Daddy gets busy, cooking at home is the first thing to go out the window. I just don’t have the energy.

Luckily, my 25-year high school reunion is coming up in two weeks, and lord knows, nothing motivates a fat ass like having to see a bunch of old friends that knew you before you were a fat ass. Urgh, I know it’s stupid, but, seeing people I haven’t hung out with since my 10-year reunion, and probably won’t see again till my 30th, has been my driving motivation to drop a few pounds.

So, starting Monday, I was back on Project X full time. No bread, no carbs, no chips, not even a nibble on the leftover crust from Greta’s peanut butter and jelly sandwich today. I licked the shit out of the knife, but, I didn’t eat the crust, so, hooray for me. Seriously, I’ve been very good and it’s kinda driving me insane. Of course, the last time I felt this crazy I ended up losing some serious weight, so, hey, whatever works…

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Daddy’s Night Out

When a buddy of mine from my SAHD Meetup group — not the group that dumped me, but, the other one — suggested that myself and another Dad in our group get together for a Daddy’s Night Out to see Prometheus, well, I kinda lept at the offer. I mean, a night out without Greta was rare enough, but, a night out without Mrs. Yeti too? Wow! Nothing at all against the lovely ladies in my life, but, seriously, I can’t remember the last time I went out without either of them.

Anyway, the big night came, we ordered all kinds of awesomely bad-for-you movie food — I’m sorry, but, even the creator of Project X knows that sometimes a man has to eat buttered popcorn and soda for dinner, dammit! — and spent the next two-and-a-half hours geeking out over the exploits of the poor, doomed crew of the Prometheus.

I don’t wanna give anything away, but, as another Dad I know wisely opined on Facebook: “I guess if you name your spaceship after a titan whom the gods condemned to have his liver eaten every day for all eternity, things are not going to end well.” Damn straight, amigo. But, oh, what a wonderful time we had watching everything go to hell onscreen. I’m not kidding, the movie ROCKED! I haven’t been that vocal in a theatre since Mrs. Yeti and I moonwalked in the aisles with a sleeping Greta at the Mommy & Me screening of This Is It. It was awesome!

And the post-screening nerdfest was even better. We actually sat at a table at a shuttered restaurant and talked about the movie and it’s place in the Alien universe for over an hour. Yep, we’re nerds. And when we finally thought we’d solved all the deep, underlying mysteries of the film, guess what we started talking about next? Our kids. Urgh…we’re such saps.

But, the inevitable baby banter aside, our first official Daddy’s Night Out was a rousing success. Can’t wait to do it again in a few weeks with the new Batman!

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The Magic Drawer

I don’t know if it’s Project X — yes, my fat ass is still trying to stay faithful to the diet that never ends! — or the change in the weather or whatever, but, lately, I’ve been feeling strangely hopeful and upbeat about all kinds of shit that used to totally bum me out.

I still don’t have a steady job — however, the two amazingly-cool freelance gigs I scored have helped — I’m like, dozens of pounds away from my ideal weight, and I just sent a check for $415.00 (plus almost $45.00 more for traffic school) to the courthouse in San Diego for a speeding ticket I got at Easter. So, not exactly a banner month in these parts, but, for some reason, I’m totally 100% cool with it. Actually, the online traffic school really, really sucked and took for-freaking-ever! But, other than that, I’m oddly cool with the hand I’ve been dealt of late.

And better yet, I’m also strangely inspired by it. I don’t wanna get all writerly on you, but, we wordsmiths (oops, there I go!) can have some long-ass dry spells. But not lately, man. For the past week or so, I’ve been almost insanely inspired to write. I feel all giddy again like I did when I first started writing scripts. It’s crazy!

Lawrence Kasdan once said that every writer has a giant locked drawer in their heads, and that everything they ever wanted to write and share with the world or just create for themselves was in that drawer in its completed form. And every once in a while, if you were lucky, you’d get to actually open that drawer and peek inside. And when that happened, well, you’d better have a pen handy and you’d better write fast, because you never know when that drawer could close back up on you. In other words, if your magic drawer is open, you best get writing. So, that’s what I’ve been doing.

Oh, I’m also kind of obsessed with movies about writers lately too. I finally watched my new Criterion Collection DVD of Jules et Jim last week and it was gorgeous, even on standard DVD! I’m sorry, but, could that cast and soundtrack be any more gorgeous? Wow! I’m also about halfway through my second viewing of Young Adult, and I’m finding that I love it even more than I did when I first saw it, so, suck it haters! Speaking of haters, next up is my other favorite crazy writer movie, the classic, love-it-or-hate-it Wonder Boys. I can’t wait!

Anyway, I don’t know what caused my magic drawer to open (and stay open!) but, it’s been kinda awesome. And, on top of all that coolness, my cargo shorts are falling off my ass way more than they usually do — seriously, I had to actually tighten my belt the other day! — so, I guess I’m still losing weight too. Which is all great and wonderful, but, now that I’ve written all this shit down, I think I need to go knock on some serious wood before the universe’s checks and balance department turns on me again. So, see ya next time!

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The upside of relapse

Urgh…I don’t know what I was thinking weighing myself the day after a long weekend of cheating on my gal, Project X, but, I did it anyway, and the results were less than stellar. Let’s just say I need to get back in this diet’s good graces and fast.

But first, I simply had to enjoy some classic Mother’s Day fare for brunch — Greta and I made French Toast, bacon, orange juice and watermelon and it was delicious — and I had my first-ever protein-style Double Double at In-N-Out for dinner. Hey, if Mrs. Yeti wants burgers for dinner on her big day, who am I to deny her? For the uninitiated, protein-style means that they wrap your burger (or cheeseburger, or…gasp, double cheeseburger!) in lettuce leaves instead of a bun. And, lemme tell ya, it was FANTASTIC. Like a little double cheeseburger salad… amazing!

So, yes, I did totally relapse this weekend, but, like my horoscope said on Sunday: “Take it easy, don’t stress”. Yes, they give you a horoscope reading when you use the cow scale at the laundry mat. Lucky lotto numbers too. I guess I should start writing those down, I mean, who knows?

Anyway, back to the grind. Hope you all had a great Mother’s Day. We watched really awesomely-bad-good movies all day — a triple feature of Joyful Noise, New Year’s Eve and The Vow, which was way better than the ads made it look. Seriously, we both got a little weepy more than once — and just hung out on the couch while Greta ran around banging pots and pans and shit. It was crazy and loud, and altogether wonderful…Happy Mother’s Day, Mrs. Yeti. I love you.

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Happy “Star Wars” Day!

Not much new to report on Project X, still hangry as all hell during the witching hour — I’ve been blasting Adele’s “Set Fire To The Rain” when I’m really jonesing for something deep-fried and it totally helps! — but, I juggled my meal times around to fit my schedule and everything seems to work a whole lot better. Or maybe I’m just getting used to this crazy diet…either way, Thursday was good.

That said, Mrs. Yeti did go into severe chocolate withdrawal last night (no foaming at the mouth, or fainting spells, but pretty damn close) and I did break down and eat one of Greta’s apple wedges after dinner. Project X is very strict on the no fruit after a certain time thing, so, that was kind of a big deal, but, hey, I’ve gorged myself with much worse things than a fucking apple wedge after dinner, so, I think I’m still good.

Anyway, enough of the food talk, the main reason I’m up at this hour is to wish you all a happy Star Wars Day! I’m not sure what Greta and I will do to celebrate this year, but, we do have a play-date scheduled with a couple of her friends, so, I’m thinking I might have to pack a few extra lightsabers!

Oh, and speaking of lightsabers, I found some old pictures of Greta celebrating “Star Wars” as an infant, so, I’m including those here as well. As you can see, we kinda forced her into celebrating at that age, but, even then, she was totally game! So, enjoy the pics, and whatever you do to celebrate “Star Wars” today, have fun, and, may the 4th be with you…always.

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