Thursday, December 22, 2005

A Groovy commercial...

I wanted to make a comment about the new Earthlink commercials. You may have seen them. The whole angle of the commercial is that the Earthlink employees “believe”. They believe in no spam, they believe in no pop ups, they believe in no long dial up/download times. To build on this, they show some of their other ‘employees’ wandering about the office. There are fairies, a leprechaun, an ogre, a mermaid, a gnomish little creature, and other assorted mythical creatures. It’s a neat concept. And I like how the commercial makes the somewhat obvious allusion to believing in fairy tale creatures. Add to that the double entendre of a Pagan/mythological “earthlink”. Very smart.

This commercial has a twofold appeal to me.

The first is the pleasant tingle the CGI rendered creatures give that barely repressed Dungeons & Dragons playing/ex-Ren Fair actor geek within me. I’ll admit it. I’m a nerd and this stuff just rocks. In college and high school, Mrs. Zombie was a popular, pretty, jock. So, while she was hanging out with all the cool kids, I was in my buddy Sean’s attic; rolling d20’s, eating pork rinds, and arguing about how my 10th level dwarven barbarian would TOTALLY be able to kill a dragon with a well placed blow of my +15 mithral hammer. And boy, does it drive Mrs. Zombie crazy when I go off on my geek tangents. She just don’t understand, no sirree!

The other coolness factor actually has a religious overtone to it. Believe it or not, as much as I rail against organized religion, I will admit a passing affinity for Pagan/Naturalistic religions. I’m not saying I believe in Paganism, the Great Mother, or any of the other accouterments of earth religions. I’m just saying it makes more sense to me than some old guy with a fickle temperament who made us for the simple purpose of loving and worshipping him; or in his son, who managed to get himself nailed to a big piece o’ wood. Being a hunter and an avid outdoorsmen, I understand the wonder and power of nature. There is no place in which I feel more comfortable, or at peace, than when I am alone in the woods. And, combine that awe with my obvious enjoyment of myths, and you get an almost irresistible attraction. In addition to all of that, I think my Irish-Celtic heritage predisposes me to marvel and find joy in the idea of natural spirits and/or creatures.

The other thing is, I have friends who are Wiccans and Neo-Pagans. They’re all great people. I do need to note that some of them are a little too anti-meat eating for my taste, and some of them are down right flaky. (You know what I’m talking about; the patchouli scented/dragon crystal wearing/astrology/numerology/aura reading nutjobs.) But, one of my best friends and a man I consider my brother, Curtis, is a Wiccan and he manages to hold down a normal job and not creep people out with the crazy talk that some of the alter-religious movements sometimes spout. Which is the way it should be, don't you think? I hold Christians and myself to a very high standard; one should keep their religious beliefs personal. Why shouldn't the New-Agers be held to the same standard? It's the way it should work, and yet, I always seem to get stuck talking to the one person at any party or function who has to fill me in on the joys of their latest religious fantasies or idealogies. Sigh.

In fact, as far as Curtis is concerned, I’ve asked him if he would be interested in doing the Burning Man festival next year. I think it would be great to just hang with the much more free minded and accepting purveyors of alternative religions. It’d be a whole lot better than going to a church revival or Christian concert. (Shudder!)

Besides, worst case scenario, I could always bite a few of the super whacky and infect them with my undead evil. Think how cool it would be to release undead, Neo-Pagan zombies on the unsuspecting, self-proclaimed arbiters of all that is right and good (Ie: Christians!). All of humanity will eventually succumb and become my evil, undead minions; but I might as well have fun before I attain single-handed, world domination, don’t you agree?

Thursday, December 15, 2005

There's a little black spot on the sun today...

I’ve been really depressed the last few days. I don’t know why. I just seem…blah. I don’t think it’s because of the job thing, although I’ll be the first to admit that I am really in a bad mood about my current job. I’ve been working for 2 ½ to 3 years towards either a promotion to the next level in my job, or at least some reward for all of my hard work. I’ve been told, by my last 3 managers, “Sure! We’ll get you there. You’re close! Really.”. If that’s so, why haven’t I been promoted? I’m really demoralized about that and I’m in that place where I’m done busting my ass and overachieving and doing everything in my power to get recognized, only to have no pay off. It just seems like I’ve been taken advantage of, you know?

So, anyway, I’ve been depressed. Really depressed, which is odd because I should really be in a good place right now. The class I’ve been training for the last 5 weeks wraps up tomorrow, I just had a pretty good birthday, Christmas is coming, and I just got my Gainshare bonus (My company profit shares, which means that I just got a check that is roughly 10% of my yearly income. Nice.) But, despite it all, I’m still not happy. I want to stay in bed all day, I can find no joy in thoughts of buying a Harley or stuff for my Jeep, and I’ve been listening to the Cure non-stop. Of course, I’ll be the first to admit I listen to the Cure a lot anyway; I mean they’re my favorite band. The thing is I haven’t been interested in any of their more upbeat fare. It’s been all Pornography, Seventeen Seconds, Carnage Visors, Disintegration, and skipping to all of the moody tracks on Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Kiss Me. Sigh. Maybe I need antidepressants?

Speaking of my birthday, I got a sweet PS2 along with a few games (Devil May Cry being my favorite). I got a few other cool things, like camo seat covers for the Blue Zombie, and some great photos from when I was a kid from my favorite aunt. My in-laws bought me a 175+ piece socket set, which was nice also. All in all, a pretty good haul.

So, I’ve been thinking about my writing a lot lately. I need to start working on a new novel. I have a great idea for a story, and I’ve started to write it several times, but I can only get the first part of the first chapter done. Sometimes the voices in my head don’t speak to me; which is the most frustrating part of writing. Either way, I need to get cracking. Maybe I’ll change the person. I was writing it in Third Person, but maybe changing the voice and person will help me find the voices in my head. Either way, I need to spend at least an hour or two a day writing. This Blog has helped immensely. It has, at the least, been an impetus for me to put some thoughts, any thoughts, down on paper.

Oh, and while we’re on the subject of the Blog:

DISCLAIMER: None, some, or all of the stuff you read on may or may not be works of fiction. This is an exercise for the good doctor to just write. I will endeavor to be completely honest when I’m being honest, but I can’t make any promises. Basically, I may make shit completely up. You get to figure out what. Mostly, it’ll be obvious. But other times it won’t. Confused yet? Yeah, me too. Just giving a heads up…

So, I'll be trudging home to my crypt now.

For how much longer can I howl into this wind?
For how much longer
can I cry like this?
A thousand wasted hours a day
Just to feel my heart for a second
A thousand hours just thrown away
Just to feel my heart for a second
For how much longer can I howl into this wind?
A Thousand Hours
by The Cure

Saturday, December 10, 2005

And verily, thy put thine heads in thy sand!

Yet another anti-religious rant, but I was goaded into this recently and it's bothered me for a while. I figured I'd exorcise the demon by writing about it...

I frequently rail against Intelligent Design and general Christian wacko-ness. In regards to ID, the main point is that I don’t want Christians weaving their mythology into the curriculum and teachings of my children. That is not their choice. The teaching of religion and cultural myths (or the lack thereof) are entirely within the sphere of my responsibility as a parent. How dare you try to push your agenda and mythological belief in some dude in the sky upon my children!

Tangible, science, English, history, and math are acceptable for school. Mythological fables and parables are not. I think that’s the whole thing that chaps my ass. That and the blind belief the Christians have that their views are inarguably right and that everything that doesn’t fit their views is wrong. Add to that their insufferable willingness to tell you so.

Another thing that bothers me are recent comments Christians have made to me when they find out I’m an Atheist. Usually, it’s along the lines of:

Doctor Zombie: I’m an Atheist. I don’t believe in God.

Pushy, smug Christian: That’s all right, He believes in you.

Or, the even more annoying;

Doctor Zombie: I’m an Atheist. I don’t believe in God.

Christian: You don’t believe that.

Doctor Zombie: Really. There is no God.

Christian: Of course there is. You know there is.

Doctor Z: No. Really. There isn’t.

Christian: You don’t believe that.

Doctor Z: Yes. I do.

Christian (patting me on my head): No, you don’t.

It’s almost like they can’t believe that you don’t share their faith. And, it is unfathomable to them that you don’t - somewhere, deep down - believe in God. The incredulous part is that they presume to know you better than you know yourself. News flash: You don’t know Doctor Zombie. You know nothing about me. Don’t presume, and don’t refuse to lend what I say credence.

I don’t generally tell people I’m an Atheist. I don’t do that for two reasons; the first being the belief that I don’t want to hear about your very personal beliefs, and I will show you the same respect and shut up about mine. Faith, or lack thereof, is and should be a personal thing and not something to brag about or wear like a Purple Heart upon your sleeve. Second, I never mention my Atheism for the simple fact that people give me such grief. I’d rather not have to punch you in your righteous, smug throat. That said, if I tell you I’m an Atheist, it is because I feel it is important that you know it. Don’t condescend to me and act like I’m a slow kid who deserves your pity and gentle correction. Don’t insult me by implying that I am somehow dishonest and disingenuous when I proclaim my beliefs. It is disrespectful and stupid of you to do so.

So - - if you choose to disrespect me in this fashion, expect that I will call you out on your stupidity and blind, slavish devotion to a cult that was started 2500 years ago. And definitely don’t be insulted if I tell you in no uncertain terms to FUCK OFF.

Well - it's the Doctor's birthday weekend. Maybe there will be a wrapped Harley in the garage? Probably not, but I can always hope.

I'm off to start the weekend with the warm blood of a fresh victim. Unpleasant dreams, dear reader...

Wednesday, December 07, 2005


What a day.

Got up this morning, excited because my work is offering an inhouse bachelor's degree program. So I got after about 2 hours of sleep, got the kids on the bus, slurped down some coffee (which I don't really like, but I needed it dammit!), drove into work and found out... it's a BA in Business Administration. That is soooo not going to help me. I need about 21 hours towards my BA in English. So I left work grumpy.

Came into work later, got THE call about the job. Guess what... I didn't get the job. The manager said that I was the perfect candidate and that I would have had the job if the winning candidate hadn't already been doing the job for 5 years. The manager also said the job was mine, if the other candidate hadn't been doing a lateral move. Bonus, they want me to apply again if another job hits the board because everyone liked me so much.

If that's the case, why don't I have the friggin job?!?

Finally, to add insult to injury, I was supposed to have Friday night off to have dinner with the family for my birthday. I went to the trouble of setting up helpers to sit in on my class and made sure I had plenty of coverage. I was really, really looking forward to this. Then I'm notified that my manager doesn't want me to take off. It's completely arbitrary as to why. She just felt that I should have to stay at work that night.

I'm in a bad place right now. I'm thinking black murderous thoughts and I'm thinking I'm trapped in a job I don't want to do witha boss I don't particularly care for - - especially now. It's not like I didn't love the job at one time. I still do love the job. I just want to move on. I'm so tired of doing the same shit every day. I need change, I need a challenge, I need more money because I'm maxed out in my damn salary range and I've got no chance of any kind of raise any time in the future.

I'm leaving work tonight, I'm going home, and I'm going to have a few beers. And I'm going to try not to think about how depressed I am.

The only thing that's looking up right now is that I have my birthday coming up and I've made the decision to try and go back to school. Maybe that will give me some direction. Maybe that will fill this emptiness. Ambition sucks.

My! Aren't I being the whiny, melodramatic, drama queen! Enough, the good Doctor must depart in his hearse to go drink frothy adult beverages to dull his pain!

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Murderous Thoughts

Bah humbug.

As I’ve probably already mentioned, I’m an antisocial bastard. I probably also have sociopathic tendencies. I do know that I have very flexible morality. It’s funny really. I get downright weepy when I think about those poor animals from Hurricane Katrina; floundering with malnutrition and loneliness in shelters around the country. Balance that with the fact that I would have absolutely no qualms about looking down the sights of a gun and killing a fellow human being. (The rules according to Leon, the Professional: “No woman, no children”) Anybody else, though. They’re fair game. Besides, if I went into the killing for hire business I’d probably find some absolution in the fact that, if I show up on your doorstep…you most likely did something bad to bring me there.

Anyway, as it applies to the holidays… I find it slightly amusing that I sometimes forget my outside world face and show the real me. Mrs. Zombie is especially unhappy when this happens. You see, she’s a nice person. I have to yell at her because, if I didn’t, she’d get out of her car in downtown Cleveland to give winos blankets and food. I have no such compunction or charitable vein. And, as she spends so much time with me, she sees the real Dr. Zombie more than most people do.

Take this last weekend. We went out to do some shopping. I’m already feeling very un-fucking-Christmas-y. To make matters worse, I’ve got to deal with crowds. People, pushing and shoving and writhing in the throes of some sick, twisted, orgiastic, and selfish desire to get the hottest new toy of the season. It makes me cranky and sullen. That’s not a good place to be when you know you have severe antisocial tendencies. It’s times like this that it takes everything I have not to punch someone in the throat and stand back, relishing the gurgling sound they’ll make as they lie gasping for air like that fish at the end of that Faith No More video.

So I was sitting in Mrs. Zombie’s Jeep outside of the local Target, waiting for several morons to stop walking in front of my car. One particularly cow-faced and coiffed soccer mom paused in front of the car to dial her cell phone. She actually stood there, in the middle of the aisle, dialing or text messaging or whatever. So, having had enough and having reached my tolerance for stupidity and rudeness, I honked the horn. The cow made a bleating noise and started, looking at me with disgust.

She then proceeded to flip me off.

Now, had my children not been in the car, and had my wife not yelled, I’m certain I would have either run the soccer mom down or gotten out of the car and eaten her liver. As it was, my wife, who had reached over to grab my arm angrily suddenly pulled back. I looked at her shocked face and growled, “What?”

“You’re thinking about killing her!” she breathed with a shudder, “I can see it on your face. I can actually see you imagining her murder!”

I, realizing I had been sussed out, quickly smiled, “Of course not, honey. I wouldn’t dream of harming that lovely woman. ‘Tis the season, and all. Ho ho ho?”

She looked at me as though I was crazy, shaking her head in disgust. I continued smiling. (Note to self - Be aware when you are being emotionally naked!) I pulled away in the Jeep, but not before glancing at the soccer mom as she scurried onto the sidewalk with a horror-struck look. She had seen my intentions, too.

‘You’re lucky, Ms. Cell Phone,’ I thought, ‘you’ve been saved by the fact that I’d probably never get a Harley if the Missus saw me gnawing on your liver.’

Friday, December 02, 2005

My'd I get so old?!?

So - - I’m back. And no deer. No big deal. I was horn hunting and passed on a few does. I was going to go hunting again tomorrow, but we’re trapped in the midst of a major snow storm and I know that Mrs. Zombie will bust my balls if I push going hunting tomorrow. We’ll see.

Still no word on the job. The final manager I interviewed with assured me that this would all be wrapped up no later than today. And yet, no call. Sigh. Maybe next week. The thing that keeps me going is that, generally, they do turn downs first. Which means, the longer I don’t hear…the better my chances.

Oh my god! Found a link to this blog. This is one of the funniest damn things I’ve ever seen. It’s Family Circus cartoons with the captions replaced by quotes from HP Lovecraft. Beautiful. Brilliant. And yet another thing that I wished I’d freakin’ thought of!

Oh – while hunting this weekend, I thought of an addition to the Big Game Grand Slam list to make it the requisite 29 animals. Alligator. I’ve got to think ‘gator hunting isn’t that hard, but I could be wrong. There’s something to be said about tangling with a 50 million year old living dinosaur with big teeth and a cranky mood. And, in the grand scheme of things, it’d probably not be too expensive. I’m still working on this. I expect I’ll do a spin off blog to detail this probable project. In that same vein, I’ll be spinning off another blog to cover another project - - The Celebrity Stalker Site. Watch for details…

I turn 35 in a little over a week. In honor of the momentous occasion, I’ve decided to put together a list of goals for my eventual mid, mid-life crisis. I was not meant for a life of mediocrity. This I know. And now, as I realize that I am much older than I wanted to be before I became famous, I need to get to work. So, the list is as follows. (And I will be sending a copy to Mrs. Zombie with an attached comment that the list does not include a mistress or a sports car. But…that can always change if I don’t get the requisite support. I mean it! )

Doctor Zombie’s Mid, Mid-life Crisis Goals
1. Publish another novel.
2. Start my own company or business (Publishing Company or Multimedia Company)
3. Hunt and kill at least 10 of North America’s 29 Big Game animals in the next 15 years.
4. Finish my Bachelors Degree and go to Grad School or Law School.
5. Meet at least 3 celebrities and walk a red carpet for at least one major news event.

So, there it is. Not too ambitious I hope… Sigh. What I wouldn’t do for a little fame, or infamy, or whatever. Again, I was not destined for a life of mediocrity.

Now I'm cranky. Well, the only way to cheer myself is to go down to the basement and let the Gimp out of the box. "It rubs the lotion on It's skin or It gets the hose again!"