busblog

nothing in here is true

  1. Saturday, June 25, 2016

    some of us were meant to stand out 

    stand outand when we dont we spit in the face of destiny

    some of us were meant to fit in

    ive never met any of those people.

    everyone ive ever met was unique and interesting and flawed and superb and

    just as fucked up as me.

    yesterday i met this beautiful young lady who grew up around people who were so different than she was

    that she never learned the beauty in herself

    because all of her friends growing up

    either didnt see the beauty in her or felt uncomfortable admitting how much they were into her.

    no one ever told her when she was a little girl

    that some of us were meant to stand out

    which is good and bad

    for one, you cant hide.

    for two, all eyes are on you

    for three all the girls are gonna stare and all the boys are gonna make fun.

    except for those who also stand out

    too.

    embrace your uniqueness

    it’s how the angels above can point you out

    from waaaaaaaaaay

    up there.

  2. Friday, June 24, 2016

    even though nothing in here is true, this is true 

    lindsay lohanas you know, on the side i drive a little for Uber, the ride sharing company who continually claims they are not a transportation company but instead they are a technology company.

    from time to time they have bonuses for the drivers if we hit certain goals.

    the most common bonus they have is one that says if a driver picks up 30 trips over a three day period of time the driver will get a $150 bonus. there is also a fare guarantee that says if you pick up 1 1/2 rides (on average) a day during peak hours of that day then you will be guaranteed $30/hr gross,

    which even for Uber Select drivers (those of us with luxury cars) is typically better than our regular hourly gross.

    three weeks ago i participated in the bonus and achieved the goals. i have done this several times and each time i have received my bonuses. every now and then i will hit a snag with the customer service email person who says i didnt hit my goal, but after emailing them back and asking them to check their records again they admit they were wrong and i got my bonuses.

    two weeks ago i hit my bonus but got an email saying i didn’t hit it. after a few back and forths they admitted they were wrong and gave me half of my bonus. i wrote back and said, dudes you admitted, properly, that you were wrong, wheres the other half. to that they did not respond AT ALL.

    so i wrote back the next day, and the next day and the next day. this has now been going on for 11 days.

    this technology company, valued at several tens of billions of dollars, seems hell bent on keeping the $135 that is owed to me. in a way they know they have me over a barrel because who sues for $135 and as a driver of a mercedes, i dont have any other ride sharing companies i can jump to very easily because Lyft doesnt offer the Select platform YET in LA.

    but they will. and i will never forget how uber has treated me, someone who has driven for them for years, who has maintained a 4.9 rating out of (the impossible) 5.0 score, signed up passengers AND fellow drivers.

    it makes me think if this is part of their profit plan: rip off 10,000 drivers on average of $150 and boom youve made $1.5 million dollars. and all you have to do is not answer their emails.

    it couldnt be more frustrating and going into another weekend with an identical bonus dangling in front of my face it makes me wonder if im a jackass for going for it again. (yes i am a jackass if i go for it again).

    yesterday i went to the LA office where they handle all sorts of Uber business. i dont know if they handle pay disputes. it was my lunch hour. i noticed how packed it was in there. when i signed in the machine told me the wait would be approximately one hour and twenty minutes. so obviously i didnt want to be late for my actual real job, so i stewed and wrote another letter to uber saying how unprofessional this is to freeze out a man who has driven for years for you.

    and of course, received zero response.

    today my real job is giving us a half day so i will venture into the HQ again. hopefully the line will be less than an hour’s wait.

  3. Thursday, June 23, 2016

    tony what would you do if you could do anything? 

    nikki minajyou mean like if i won the lottery? because if i won the lottery id buy mom mom a house with a giant garden

    in the garden would be incredible bubbling ponds and tiny volcanoes.

    the volcanoes would errupt right before winter so the soil would be the richest it could be right before the snow

    all around the garden would be peach trees and pecan trees and banana trees.

    no tony what would you do if you could do anything, not buy anything.

    i would be a fantastic photographer. but not one with a lot of equipment.

    i would want to be known as the guy who has like three lenses and one camera, who never uses flash

    but best of all, who never uses photoshop.

    maybe my assistants behind my back touch things up but im off to the next thing.

    i would go to school for it if i ever had any free time.

    dont you know great photographers?

    yes but i would never ask them.

    but arent some of your friends great photographers?

    yes but i would want to be – didnt you hear me – i would want to be the greatest photographer ever. which would mean that i would be better than they are. i dont wanna learn from them and then beat them. thats rude.

    is that what happened with writing? did you learn from your friends and then beat them?

    no. some of my friends are better writers than me.

    but theyre not better bloggers.

    ahahaha true. but only because they all grew up and got married and had kids and junk.

    its basically impossible to be a good parent and an everyday blogger. you gotta pick one.

    and for some reason the future of america is more important than the http

  4. shout out to the inventors of periscope 

    periscope founderswhen kayvon beykpour and joe bernstein invented periscope, the simple way to record and stream video through a mobile device,

    they probably never thought that their little app would find its way in the Well of the House of Representatives so lawmakers could document their peaceful protest after that brave Republican Paul Ryan shut down the C-SPAN cameras

    because he’s such a great leader

    and should probably be president of the united states.

    a few years ago periscope was acquired by Twitter which was a match made in digital Heaven because periscope piggybacks perfectly on twitter, alerting all of your twitter followers that you are broadcasting

    which is what happened yesterday when a few of the Congresspeople realized that they could bypass the Speaker Ryan bravery by simply broadcasting themselves

    from their phones.

    i dont know why kayvon beykpour and joe bernstein arent doing a victory lap around tv shows right now

    their invention helped make the #holdthefloor protest something that people around the world could see

    even the courageous Paul Ryan who probably watched it on CSPAN

    (who, once their cameras were shut off by the GOP, linked up to the periscope feed and broadcasted that).

    bros deserve some props today.

    the busblog salutes them.

  5. Tuesday, June 21, 2016

    im going to miss a deadline tomorrow at work 

    safe in hell

    it makes me sad because i always hit my deadlines.

    but this is a different type of assignment. it’s long and involved. and even though we knew about it a month ago, i had three other assignments between then and now, plus i had to work far longer on those than i expected.

    and worse of all, this one, like i said, is long and involved. and i know nothing about it.

    and my stomach was in knots all day today and a little yesterday because of it.

    sometimes a situation appears in front of you and you know how to work with it. 99% of the time i drive i know several different routes to where we need to go if disaster strikes. thats why im always cool behind the wheel.

    in this scenario, i knew everything was against me. most of all, time.

    with me, there is often a little spark of magic that strikes when i write things

    sometimes.

    from day one on this thing, a month ago, there was no magic, ever. it was all work.

    dig dig dig, polish, place.

    one sentence after another. it literally would take hours for a sentence.

    mostly because it has to be true. and accurate. and well written. and with proof.

    so you read read read. talk talk. google read google. then you have a sentence.

    i even talked to experts but they were on a different plane.

    our planes never intertwined.

    last week my plane and the other dudes planes were doing loop di loos together.

    any question i had there was an answer. anywhere i wanted to go, he was there too.

    it was different because he had little two sentence answers, which is quotable but i wanted to get deep.

    so i realized i needed several followups.

    this was harder. still is. i have tonight and i have tomorrow to see what last minute miracle happens.

    and hopefully i got over the tough transition today, but im still not sure.

    heres my biggest fear about it: i dont want kids looking at it while doing research if its not fucking great.

    as someone who dealt with less than fucking great materials when i was a kid,

    i dont wanna be that guy to them.

  6. Monday, June 20, 2016

    call me a princess but i dont drive if someone owes me money 

    king of the avefor most of last week i wrote Uber emails telling them that they shortchanged me about half of my paycheck from the week previous.

    they replied, as they usually do, with some dude from a foreign country, where English is a second language, that i was wrong and they were right.

    i replied, as i usually do, with, a stern but polite, you cray kanye, give me my money or i dont drive this week.

    they replied two days later, as they usually do, with an omg look at this it appears we do owe you some money, but of course it was not the entirety of what should have been remitted.

    and then two days after that i wrote them again to remind them that it was at that point Friday and if they were going to put their customer service to bed for the weekend that would be a bad idea because i was not going to drive unless i was fully paid

    and they didnt reply, because for some reason, this so called technology company valued at several tens of billions of dollars, do not employ customer service reps over the weekends, which means the correspondences pile up

    which means i will be writing them again today to tell them that they still owe me about $150 and im not going to drive this week unless it is given to me.

    it’s weird to work in partnership with someone who doesn’t want to give you their phone number, who is currently working on ways to have robots replace you, who pawns off all correspondences to people who are either mentally challenged or intentionally dragging their feet because others might either give up or assume that they were incorrect.

    but the thing is i am neither incorrect or worn down by emailing. emailing is simple. proving my point is even simpler. and because this customer service org is obviously not owned nor operated by Uber, it is clearly a cash grab based on multiplying the replies so as to triple and quadruple-charge the cash cow. thus a simple “omg we didnt pay you correctly, heres the money” turns into 8-10 emails of which the third party can charge Uber for each and every email.

    this is not how the so called technology company should be doing customer service.

    as someone who worked for an actual tech company who did actual customer service from 1998-2000 i know first hand how much money Uber is wasting by trying to do things the cheapo way.

    but it was relaxing having the weekend off.

    now its time for me to write another email.

  7. Sunday, June 19, 2016
  8. Saturday, June 18, 2016

    keith richards exuding magic all over the page 

    keith richards 1963
    im finally reading the keith richards autobio “life”. actually johnny depp is reading it to me via audible.  you miss details when youre driving around LA listening to johnny read the words of the stone, you daydream and think, “did johnny really know what he was in for? this book is loooong. is he tired? did he get paid a million bucks or did he do it for free?”

    but then a passage like this comes to you and you hope you remember to make note of it. so heres the note: keith is incredible.

    we are on page 108 when Keith, talking about 1963, the time right before the stones blew up, writes:

    There you have it. That was all we listened to at the time. Just American blues or rhythm and blues or country blues. Every waking hour of every day was just sitting in front of the speakers, trying to figure out how these blues were made. Chicago blues hit us right between the eyes. And as long as we were all together, we could pretend to be black men. We soaked up the music, but it didn’t change the colour of our skin. Some even went whiter. Brian Jones was a blond Elmore James from Cheltenham. And why not? You can come from anywhere and be any colour. We didn’t want to make money. We despised money, we despised cleanliness, we just wanted to be black motherfuckers. Fortunately we got plucked out of that. But that was the school; that’s where the band was born.

    The early days of the magic art of guitar weaving started then. You realise what you can do playing guitar with another guy, and what the two of you can do is to the power of ten, and then you add other people. There’s something beautifully friendly and elevating about a bunch of guys playing music together. This wonderful little world that is unassailable. It’s really teamwork, one guy supporting the others, and it’s all for one purpose, and there’s no flies in the ointment, for a while. And nobody conducting: it’s all up to you. It’s really jazz: that’s the big secret. Rock’n’roll ain’t nothing but jazz with a hard backbeat. So we sat there in the cold, dissecting tracks for as long as the meter held out. A new Bo Diddley record goes under the surgical knife. Have you got that wah-wah? What were the drums playing, how hard were they playing . . . what were the maracas doing? One of the first lessons I learnt with guitar playing was that none of these guys were actually playing straight chords. There’s a throw-in, a flick-back. Nothing’s ever a straight major. It’s an amalgamation, a mangling and a dangling and a tangling thing. There is no “properly”. There’s just how you feel about it. Feel your way around it. It’s a dirty world down here.

    Mostly I’ve found, playing instruments, that I actually want to be playing something that should be played by another instrument. I find myself trying to play horn lines all the time on the guitar. When I was learning how to do these songs, I learnt there is often one note doing something that makes the whole thing work. It’s usually a suspended chord. It’s not a full chord, it’s a mixture of chords, which I love to use to this day. If you’re playing a straight chord, whatever comes next should have something else in it. If it’s an A chord, a hint of D. Or if it’s a song with a different feeling, if it’s an A chord, a hint of G should come in somewhere, which makes a 7th, which then can lead you on. Readers who wish to can skip Keef’s Guitar Workshop, but I’m passing on the simple secrets anyway, which led to the open-chord riffs of later years — the Jack Flash and Gimme Shelter ones.

    stones 1963There are some people looking to play guitar. There’s other people looking for a sound. I was looking for a sound when Brian and I were rehearsing in Edith Grove. Something easily done by three or four guys and you wouldn’t be missing any instruments or sound on it. I just followed the bosses. A lot of those blues players of the mid-Fifties — Albert King and B. B. King — were single-note players. T-Bone Walker was one of the first to use the double-string thing — to use two strings instead of one, and Chuck got a lot out of T-Bone.

    Musically impossible, but it works. The notes clash, they jangle. You’re pulling two strings at once and you’re putting them in a position where actually their knickers are pulled up. You’ve always got something ringing against the note or the harmony. The reason that cats started to play like that was economics — to eliminate the need for a horn section.

    Brian and I, we had the Jimmy Reed stuff down. When we were really hunkering down and working, working, Mick obviously felt a little bit out of it. Also he was away at the London School of Economics for much of the day to start with. He couldn’t play anything. That’s why he picked up on the harp and the maracas. Brian had picked up the harmonica very quickly at first, and I think Mick didn’t want to be left behind. I wouldn’t be surprised if from the beginning it wasn’t just from being in competition with Brian. And Mick turned out to be the most amazing harp player. I’d put him up there with the best in the world, on a good night. Everything else we know he can do — he’s a great showman — but, to a musician, Mick Jagger is a great harp player. I find it hard to listen to him without awe. His harp playing is the one place where you don’t hear any calculation.

    I say: “Why don’t you sing like that?” He says they’re totally different things. But they’re not — they’re both blowing air out of your gob.

    It was a mania. Benedictines had nothing on us. Anybody that strayed from the nest to get laid, or try to get laid, was a traitor. You were supposed to spend all your waking hours studying Jimmy Reed, Muddy Waters, Little Walter, Howlin’ Wolf, Robert Johnson. That was your gig. Every other moment taken away from it was a sin. It was that kind of atmosphere, that kind of attitude that we lived with. The women around were really quite peripheral. The drive in the band was amazing among Mick, Brian and myself. It was incessant study. Not really in the academic sense of it: it was to get the feel of it.

    And then I think we realised, like any young guys, that blues are not learnt in a monastery. You’ve got to go out there and get your heart broke and then come back and then you can sing the blues. Preferably several times. At that time, we were taking it on a purely musical level, forgetting that these guys were singing about shit. First you’ve got to get in the shit. And then you can maybe come back and sing it.

  9. Friday, June 17, 2016

    mom, you shouldnt read this, trust me 

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    today is the 22nd anniversary of OJs bronco chase which means 22(!) years ago i was roommates with todd francis on Folsom Street in Frisco when we saw the chase.

    Todd had a great apartment which i think was like a guest house in the back of a regular house on Folsom and like 22nd if i remember correctly.

    i had just been asked to transfer from LA to SF for Philips because they were about to introduce this thing called WebTV which connected your TV to the Internet and their guy in SF didn’t know anything about the web (who did 22 years ago?) and wasnt willing to learn.

    so they made me the dude in charge of No Cal, which was fine with me because as much as i loved living in Atwater Village with Greg and Jeff, none of us were getting laid and they were pursing their musical careers and i was up for a change of scenery so why not.

    Todd had an extra room for rent so why not. He was a great roommate, soooo funny, and he was a vegetarian so there were nights when omg i wouldnt eat any meat. trippy.

    right away i started getting dates through AOL for some reason.

    one of the first ones was this rich girl who was sorta seeing this guy whos dad owned a car dealership. beautiful asian girl. i wanna say her name was Candis. i was all, why are you breaking up with your dude. she said because he is so obsessed with money, he never pays any attention to me. i said send me a picture and it was like a put on, she was too beautiful. i was all. take a picture with todays news paper. she said i dont get the paper.

    i said ok take a picture with your hat on backwards and standing on one leg. she did and i was all

    lets go to the drive in, that way we can see a movie AND talk at the same time.

    ok mom if youre still reading you really need to stop because its only gonna get worse.

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