Hola, amigos. How's by you? I know it's been a long time since I rapped at ya, but I been weighed down by a shit-ton of trouble. First of all, my muffler is all shot. I don't care much, since I like a loud car, but I got pulled over for it yesterday. The cop gave me a ticket for $140 I don't have.
Pigs, man. They've always had it in for Jim Anchower. But I ain't gonna give them the satisfaction of paying the whole thing. If I go to court, I bet Judge Wiedenbach'll knock it down to $80 with no points off my license. That judge is a good guy.
The money isn't as much of a problem as it woulda been a couple months ago, mostly because I got this new job. The big electronics store I was working at went out of business. They gave us the chance to stay for a while and work the liquidation sale, but I decided that would depress the shit out of me. All those people in there picking through bins for $2 cables. That ain't for me.
Now I'm working at a warehouse discount place. They opened up a couple months ago, and my pal Ron got himself a job there. He put in a good word for me, they called me up, and it was "So long, electronics." Now I get to drive a forklift around the aisles and stack up palates of paper towels and Cup Noodles and shit like that. The great thing is they have all these boxes of candy bars there for sale. All I got to do when I get hungry is tear a box open and take one out. If no one notices, some poor sap just buys it and nobody's the wiser. If they do notice, they just think a customer did it and they use the rest to fill the vending machine.
It's a good thing the job came along, otherwise I'd be totally boned. See, I got a living-situation situation on my hands. Namely, I got to find a new Casa de Anchower in a hurry.
A couple weeks ago, it got nice and warm out. Not too warm, but warm enough that I could finally show off my best Zep shirt. That's a good thing, 'cause after a long winter under flannel, that thing needed to be displayed. Anyway, as the saying goes, there were some other things I needed to do while the sun was still shining, or whatever.
First, I opened up the windows to let some air in. Now, I ain't some sort of stink machine, but I will admit, after being closed up so long, there's definitely a funk in my apartment. So it's good to get a little spring freshness inside.
Then, I went out to put the Festiva through the paces. I had bought all the stuff I needed—oil, oil filter, air filter, the works. I spent a couple hours making sure it was all tight as a drum before I went inside and cleaned up my place a bit. I flipped on the TV for a little, but then figured it would be a shame to stay inside on a day like this, especially when I just fixed up my car.
I popped a tape in the radio and hit the road. I must have put about 150 miles on the odometer and gone through Houses Of The Holy five times, just chilling. By the time I decided to call it a day, I was closer to Ron's house than I was to mine. I never thanked him proper for the job, so I went and picked up some weed and a case of Miller Genuine Draft and dropped by.
Turns out Ron's friend Rob was over there already, and he brought a case of beer, some weed, and the movie Crank with him. So did we get into some shit? Yes, we did. I can't remember everything, and even if I did, I wouldn't tell you what all we did, except that I definitely have to see Crank again.
When I woke up, I was on Ron's floor. He was telling me I only had 20 minutes to get to work, and I'd better get up so I wouldn't make him look bad. I wasn't feeling great, but I been worse, so I washed up fast and drove to work. Traffic was a bitch because it was raining, and some people freak out when a little rain gets on the ground, but I was only five minutes late. Just my luck, my manager got that flu bug that's going around so he wasn't in that day.
I was in the clear. The rest of the day I took it easy, had a couple naps, and drove home in the rain.
When I got to my apartment, something felt wrong. I couldn't put my finger on it, until I opened the door. Turns out, I forgot to close the windows and there was about six inches of water on the floor. The drain outside my window must have been clogged, and since the ground's still frozen, all the water just pooled up and came inside.
I mean, I been flooded out before when a pipe broke, but it wasn't near this bad. It covered my mattress, for Christ's sake. There were old wrappers and a few plastic cups floating around my kitchen. I took the leaves off the drain outside my window and started bailing the shit out with an old ice cream bucket I throw my loose pennies in, but after 10 minutes, I hadn't even made a dent. Plus, there go all my pennies.
No way I was getting my security deposit back, so I got a duffel bag, filled it with clothes, my tapes, and my Wii and went back to Ron's. I probably should have called the landlord, but he'll figure it out soon enough.
So now I'm staying at Ron's place, something he ain't too happy about, and neither am I. That guy snores, and his girlfriend gives me the creeps. I got my ear out for a new place, but so far, I haven't heard anything. If you know about something, let me know. I'll throw you a little something for your trouble.
Jim Anchower joined The Onion's editorial writing staff in 1993 after several distinguished years on The Come Back Inn dishwashing staff. He comments on community-affairs, automotive, and employment issues. He attended LaFollette High School in Madison, WI.