Saturday - considering how late we were playing Magic, I was up fairly early... this was a fairly normal day of anal-retentive cleansing of the apartment, followed by an eve at Anathema. The crowd wasn't bad, albeit a bit sparse... but that's okay, cuz Panic was there! Yay! Demogorgon also finally came out, and I got to see her pink hair an' chat for a while.
We left the bar early, though, to head over to Des' place. His upstairs neighbors had been planning a party - no, a mini-festival. Flyers had been handed out, neighbors had been invited door-to-door... By the time we got there, it looked like something right out of a beer commercial! A DJ was spinning the tunes, a large TV had been placed in front of one of the windows and was displaying all kinds of imagery, entire pigs were roasted on a spit, a pool table was acquired from somewhere, small line-ups formed at the kegs of beer, and in the middle of it all was a good-sized bonfire. A small game of soccer even broke out; it didn't last long though - I'd guess that kicking around a 5' ball expended more energy than most were willing to put forth... That's all I have to say about that.
Sunday - I had set the alarm the previous night, knowing full well that I'd be out late. I had a very important thing to be up for, after all - today was the day I took my driver's test! I need my license for the trip to NY/TO, otherwise poor Colin will have to drive the whole way himself! Three o'clock rolled around, and I found myself at the registry office, waiting for my judge and jury to unbusy herself. After a quick inspection of the car (signals, brake lights, etc), we were on our way. Parallel parking - perfect, first time (what a fuckin' fluke!!). Downhill parking - good. Driving skill - good. Why didn't I get my license? Why did I fail the test? I made a left turn before some pedestrians who were crossing were actually on the sidewalk... it didn't matter that they were only a couple of steps away when I started the turn, or that they were on the sidewalk by the time I passed them. "The pedestrian has a right to go completely from corner to corner in safety." Automatic failure. No points given. Failed. Give me a fuckin' break... What, did I hit the bastards? Was I even close to their heels?? Was I so obnoxious that they even paid any attention to me?? I think not. The idea of that being an enforceable regulation is absurd! Allow me to give an example I've seen every weekday for the last three weeks, not to mention any number of other times.
Picture, if you will, a five lane, one-way street in the downtown core; let's call it 5th Ave (completely hypothetical, of course!). Add to this an intersection with another one-way street; let's call this one 4th St (also completely hypothetical!). This second street has dual right-turning lanes onto 5th Ave. Am I supposed to believe that, when the light is green and they can turn, vehicles are to wait for any and all pedestrians to cross and actually be on the sidewalks on either side? They are to wait until these snails have made it along all five lanes to the other side, despite the fact that the vehicles are only going to be turning into the first two?? Here's where I give some figures. I've noted in the last couple of days that the average ped crosses one lane in approximately the same time it takes a car to complete a turn. If that were the case, a single pedestrian would tie up seven vehicles from going if they were starting from the same side that the cars were on; otherwise, eight would be waiting around for this mobile speed bump to get their ass across the road. Can you imaging the gunfire that would break out if people were to actually follow this shit?
Failed. Wut'thufuk! She'd even asked if I'd taken Driver's Ed. cuz I she thought I was pretty good... Yeah, well how 'bout puttin' a big, fat "P" on there (for "Pretty good") instead of that ugly "F" (for "Fucked")...
Monday - Ugh... back to work. At least the day was busy, and definitely a Monday! Okay, that's enough about work. I'm sure you find reading about it as boring as I find writing about it.
Dammit, I had to take that road test again! I need my driver's license. This time, though, I was armed with further information - I'd seen the list of things that were cause for immediate failure. This did not help me at all. The list included things like "right of way violation" (my first test failure) and "Lacks caution at uncontrolled intersections", among others. Subjective shit. This time, I had that deep-in-the-gut feeling that I was fucked. She already knew that I was a good driver; for me, now, this was no longer a driver's test, but a psychological exam. Could I handle being under the microscope? Having my every move analyzed? Being judged on every action I took, for something that I desperately needed? I don't think I can even begin to properly explain how much I loath those kind of tests, that kind of scrutiny. I felt almost violated, and yet I had to push my way through it for the second time, checking every action, every move. Am I doing the right speed - not too slow, and not over the limit? Did I put my signal on too early, or too late? Did I change lanes too quickly for her comfort? Are my hands at 3 and 9? Am I accelerating at a good rate, and braking gently enough? Am I far enough behind the car ahead of me? Am I stopping where I'm supposed to? Am I checking the mirrors often enough? Am I keeping an eye out for pedestrians/hazards (same thing...)? By the time I got through the cycle-of-worrying-about-things, I found myself barely over the speed limit while on a slight decline. I don't believe I mentioned above that a "Speeding violation" is an immediate failure. Yay me - strike two. Fukaduk.
Tuesday - More work. I know, that prob'ly caught you off guard...
No driver's test today. I don't think I could handle more failure. This fine eve, T and I watched a movie - "Exit Wounds", partially filmed right here in town! I recall going home after work and being delayed en route, having the "have a nice day" helicopter fly by many times, and watching the Center St. bridge being blown up! It's weird seeing a place you know so well in a major motion picture - at least, I think it is.
Wednesday - how did it get to be the middle of the week already?? Work went quite well today; I even caught up on some old stuff the guy I'm covering for left behind. I'm sure that excites you to no end... I know I'm giddy!
I have only a week left before we leave on our trip. I'm feeling odd about this; it's like there's still so much time, and yet not enough to get ready. I don't usually get excited about trips or events until they're right there, upon me, but for some reason, this seems different. Perhaps it's because this time there are other people relying solely on our plans. Joe will be flying into Toronto to meet up with us; it'll be so nice to see him again! Our friendship always seemed almost... surreal somehow, and I'm excited to see him again. And I haven't gotten in touch with Emu yet, either; I must, I must do that sometime this week. Emu, if you're reading this, let me know how to get a hold of you, since, last I heard, your e-mail wasn't working properly.
Speaking of Joe, I have yet to put up the new pics he recently sent me. Look for those in the next couple of days. In truth, I've been neglecting the site lately; very few journal updates and the metaphors have gone uncompleted. I'll try to correct this over the next few days.
I have (yet) another driver's test tomorrow. Five o'clock. Same examiner. She mentioned last time that perhaps I'd want to go with someone else, but I don't believe that would make a difference. This is going to be a psych exam no matter which examiner it is sitting in the passenger's seat. Wish me luck, and send calming thoughts...