I Gotta Get Back To My RootsCommentary • ISSUE 38•32 • Sep 4, 2002 By Jim Anchower – The Cruise Hola amigos. How you doing? I know it's been a long time since I rapped at ya, but I've been busy as a mofo. Nah, I'm full of shit. Jim Anchower's been taking it easy lately. Spending some time doing what I need to do to keep me happy. And who would try to keep me from doing that? See, for a while there, I was in a pretty bad funk. I felt like I'd been taking care of everyone but Number One. The thing that was bringing me down the worst was my coat-check job at the museum. Sure, the money was okay, and I got to keep stuff from the lost and found if it stayed there for three weeks. And I got tips, so I always had beer money in hand after work. But for all that good stuff, that gig just wasn't my speed. I couldn't take any more of that button-down world. The last straw came when my supervisor started hassling me about the taco-sauce stain on my shirt. I told him no one noticed it but him. He said that was one too many people, as far as he was concerned. I told him that as far as I was concerned, he could ram the shirt and the job. I've quit a few jobs in my day, hombres, but none ever felt as good as quitting that one. It felt like a heavy weight had been lifted from my back. No more snotty, know-it-all coworkers, no more my-shit-don't-stink customers, and no more King Prick boss. Just me and the wind. That's the way I like it. Now, normally when I quit a job, I find myself in an immediate cash crunch. Not this time. I quit on the last day of the pay period, so I had a whole check coming. On top of that, I'd somehow managed to save up about $240. Plus, Ron owed me a shitload of beers and food, and for once I could actually hit him up for it, 'cause he landed on easy street at the tool-and-die factory. That meant one thing: For the first time in years, Jim Anchower was in a financial position to kick around and get back to his roots. When I was working and hating life, I'd spend all my time going back and forth between my crib and my bullshit job. If I was lucky, I could squeeze out enough energy to see a movie or drag my ass to a bar for an hour or two before having to go home and go to bed early for work the next day. But now that I was free, I celebrated with a few bong hits and mapped out a plan for my next few weeks of luxury. It came to my attention that my wheels had not been properly serviced in quite some time. Now, I'm not one of those guys who keeps a bottle of Armor All in the glove box so I can shine the dash and seats every time I use the car. Hell, with my Ford Festiva, it wouldn't be worth it. But I gave the shitbox the old once-over, you know, just so it would keep running until I can finally get my dream wheels. I gave it the full works. I changed the plugs and wires, checked the fluids. For the first time in a while, I was on top of things, automotive-wise. And it felt damn good. "But Jim," I can hear you say, "fixing a car isn't enough for you. You're a wild man. You need more than that to keep you happy." You're right on that count. Jim Anchower finally took the plunge. I got a new video-game system. My old Super Nintendo went on the fritz about a year ago, and I've done without ever since. Mind you, I can make my own fun. I just hate to have to when I'm settling into a nice buzz. I like to keep my mind and hands busy, and that's just something you can't do when you're watching a movie. Unless it's one of those meat-spanking movies, and that ain't something I'm about to discuss with my readers. Once I decided to get a new system, I called up Wes. He's always game for a trip to the electronics store. Don't ask why. Some people like to bowl, some people like to hang out at the park, but for Wes, an afternoon looking at camcorders and other fancy shit he can't afford is his idea of a great time. So we got in the old Anchowermobile and headed down to Best Buy. While Wes looked at DVD players, I kicked the tires on all the game systems. Picking one wasn't easy. The graphics were great on all of them, and they all had some killer games. Plus, they all looked cool. Except the Xbox, which looked like a clunky steaming load. Then, I weighed the all-important zombie-game factor. With my old Super Nintendo, there weren't any good zombie games. But in the time since I'd bought it, all the video-game makers finally figured out that people want to blow the shit out of zombies. All the new systems had pretty decent zombie games, so that was a good thing, though it didn't help me decide. After giving it a lot of thought, I finally decided to get the Nintendo Game Cube. My Super Nintendo did all right by me, so I figured a Super Super Nintendo would probably do even better. Anyway, what the Game Cube lacks in race games it more than makes up for in zombie games. Not only does it have Resident Evil, but there's also Eternal Darkness. I took a hard look at the cash I'd socked away and decided I had enough for a Game Cube plus one game. I got Eternal Darkness because, unlike Resident Evil, you can only get that for the Game Cube. You see, Jim Anchower enjoys the finer things in life, and there's not much finer than a video game that's exclusive to the very system that you happen to own. Before making my purchases, I had to find Wes. After a 20-minute search, I finally found him camped out in front of the flat-screen TVs. Now, normally, I would've just grabbed him and dragged his ass out of there, but they were playing one of the Die Hard movies. I can't remember which one it was. There were terrorists in it, that's all I remember, and it looked pretty cool on that 36-inch flat screen, especially since we'd smoked up in the Best Buy parking lot before heading in. So we hung out there and waited for the movie to finish. I knew I'd never be able to afford one of those TVs unless I won the lottery. On the way home, we stopped for some gas and lottery tickets. When we got back on the road, I was feeling so good about my Game Cube purchase that I rolled the windows down and cranked some Molly Hatchet on the tape deck. Just when I thought the day couldn't get any better, we whizzed past Ron, who was walking somewhere. He looked up and tried to flag us down, but we were going too fast. It was just one of those days. I was filled with that peaceful easy feeling. Sure, I'll probably call up Ron tomorrow and see if he wants to stop by and shoot some zombies with me. Or just watch me shoot zombies. If he asks about me blowing him off in the car, I'll just say I didn't see him. I'm going to make him bring the beer, and I won't take no for an answer, 'cause Jim Anchower is back in full form. It just goes to show you how it all falls into place if you wait for it. I don't mean to get all deep on you, but I've come to realize something: Having no worries really changes a person for the better. You know? If your life ain't working for you, then you're doing something wrong, and you need to make a change. That's all I've got to say on the subject. So don't come to me for any more wisdom, 'cause I ain't in the mood for an audience right now.