Friday, October 30, 2009

Canada Jackson's Doctoral Challenge 2: This Time It's Personal

I've recently resumed the downward spiral of self-flagellation and misery that is applying to doctoral programs in philosophy. Hopefully I will detail my adventures in this mire of Lovecraftian terror better than I did last time AND MORE IMPORTANTLY MAYBE THIS TIME I WILL BE SUCCESSFUL.

I am currently struggling with the various essays I have to write. First I need a writing sample. Last time I used my senior thesis from the Honors program at the University of Scranton. Somehow this seventy page pile of sparsely cited thirteen-point-font madness, written in the space of twelve hours four days after it was due, did not manage to impress upon anyone that I can tie my shoes without pissing myself, let alone communicate complex thoughts coherently. "The Death of Democracy," it's called, and it's horrifyingly available at the Weinberg Memorial Library here in Scranton. My thesis, as I recall, is that I am a retarded person who should be put in government care--or, at the very least, have someone with me at all times to slap things out of my hands that I am slowly putting in my mouth.

So, new writing sample, written whole-cloth and hopefully not the worst thing that has ever happened to anyone, ever. My topic ideas:
1. Technology!, or: Why Heidegger and Marx Can Suck On It ("It" Being My Penis)
2. Plato's Republic vs. The Constitution of the United States, or: Plato Was a Dickhead, USA! USA! USA!
I'm leaning more towards the second one, as everyone knows that Plato was a dickhead, but not everyone knows that Heidegger and Marx should suck my dick.

They will, however. They will.

Furthermore, there are these strange little things I have to write up that are called "Personal Statements," "Statement of Purpose," "Statement of Intent," "Academic Statement," &c. As far as I can cobble together these are all the same things...unless one institution requires two of those things. Apparently some schools ask that I explain the following:
1. Why I want to study philosophy. (Money, power, women.)
2. Why I want to study philosophy at their particular school. (I don't. I want to go to the place that will give me the most money. If you are not that place, then I don't want to go to you.)
3. What makes me so god-damn special. (According to my family and friends: my incredible ability to embarrass myself in front of large groups of people I respect. According to my professors: my ability to find new and interesting ways to avoid any cognitive functioning above that required for respiration and, on my best days, wearing clothes. According to me: one time in Halo I killed my friend Annie with a rocket that I fired from the other side of the map. Yeah, Cornell. I know you want me.)

I think I might just write "I am a winner and sex machine." and see how far that gets me. I think honest-to-god philosophers would have a lot of fun with that one. What does me mean by "a winner"? Does that mean that he has won things in the past or simply has the potential to win things in the future? And what things? Grocery store sweepstakes? Carnival prizes? The affection of the masses? Why is his status (possibly--nay, probably--self-proclaimed) as a sex machine relevant? Is his proclamation positive or negative--a deconstruction of the modern feminist idea of a "sex object"? Can a man be a sex machine?

Clearly, I can. Just look at the airbrushing on my van, bitches. Plus I think it would be cool to have people ask "Doctor, why did you offer Mr. Jackson a position as a graduate student here?" And the answer be, simply, "Oh, he's a winner and a sex machine."

Now if only SQR could mass-produce an "I AM A WINNER AND A SEX MACHINE" t shirt.

Anyway, I'll keep you idiots updated on my quest to further debase myself in a manner second only to walking around downtown Scranton wearing a beautifully hand-written sandwich-board sign saying, "I shat my pants."

Thursday, October 29, 2009

My Summer Vacation by Canada Jackson

Gentlemen! Pack your tobacco and clean your sidearms for I have returned.

(I would have said "Ladies and gentlemen," were it not for the common knowledge that women are not allowed to use the Intranets.)

I have not found time to bore you with embarrassing episodes of my miserable existence recently because of my increased duties as the weeping dwarf that the universe--like a mad medieval king intoxicated with feudal power, brain ravaged with a timely combination of syphilis and questionable grog--forces to dance in its dining hall, the only thing approaching recompense being the occasional chicken bone chucked halfheartedly at my head.

Ah, Jackson, you readers may say, if you're not viciously attacking random passersby with ad hominem like a hipsterish ancient mariner, you're bemoaning the existential despair of your comfortable, middle-class existence. It's the only game in town, says I.

Recently [Demarcations] hired six new bright-eyed and enthusiastic no-names as grist for the all-hungry soul mill that is their book selling operation. I felt nothing but pity when I saw them in the back room, eagerly absorbing their training. You poor, feckless motherfuckers, I thought. No training on this world can prepare you for discovering a naked, homeless man bathing himself from the toilet bowl in the public restroom. You will never be prepared to have a man--angry about not being allowed to cut the long register line--throw a book at you. But you will most certainly be familiar with being supervised by hill-folk whose knowledge of the product they're selling--literature--is taken up entirely by the crudest of facsimiles--pornography and Glenn Beck.

These delightful young pups are starting off at the registers, as I once did a little more than a year ago. What I was thrilled to discover, however, is that they are somehow getting paid fifty cents more than me. From day one. So, for the slower folks at home: new people, less responsibilities, less knowledge, less experience...more money. I, instead of starting a fire in the stockroom and spelling out "I quit" in urine on the carpet, discussed this discrepancy with the general manager. He was shocked by this difference in pay and said he would try and do something about it.

Apparently "something" is cutting my hours to one day a week. My last paycheck was fifty four dollars. I think I am going to work on my urine calligraphy. Either that or pimp this pitiful blog out in some fashion as to get an insane billionaire to finance the publication of a book--which, due to my brain's inability to (medically speaking) do anything will never actually see the light of day. And I highly doubt there is an audience out there for pompous, obscene rambling on the subject of everyday annoyances peppered with misused, misspelled ten-dollar words. Hurr hurr, beer, farts.

Speaking of not doing things, my good friend in New York City keeps harassing me to update this blog, citing the fact that she knows people who actually read it. Poppycock! It occurs to me, though, that if I mention her in this blog that I must come up with a handle for her, ala RJP4 and Mr. Midnight a.k.a the Food Monster. I find myself unable to do anything with her name, save the fact that her first name is more Irish than drunken morning premarital sex in a sheep pasture with a fiery barmaid named Moira, and her last name is more Jewish than complaining simultaneously about the air conditioning being too high and the soup temperature being too low in a deli in Manhattan. I expect a text message from her any minute ending our friendship. I'm just saying that if you need both a pub and a pyramid built in the same afternoon that I might know someone. Hi-o! Stereotypes.

Anyway, what I'm saying is that I'll try more to keep this damn albatross better fed. I know I say this with almost every post. But this time I might mean it. But probably not. Although now I do have tons of free time and no money to do anything else...

Maybe I'll passive-aggressively turn my posts into a more typical kind of blog in which I detail the horror of my daily activities. For example: "I wake up at eight o'clock sharp and then nap until around 11, when I am awoken by my stocky, homosexual pet cat's effort grunts as he climbs onto my bed. At this point I waste fourteen hours watching youtube videos of animals walking into things. My girlfriend sends me a text: 'What are you doing?' and I respond 'Working on grad school applications.' I eat several doughnuts and lose consciousness in my own filth--but not before a quarter-turn in order to prevent bed sores."

Is this really what you want, America?

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

America's Future, Today!

Hey, remember when I used to post funny quotes from my adventures teaching elementary school? Well, I'm doing that again. So lets get to it.

The first quote comes from L. L, is a runt of a child. He's in third grade, but is the size of a first grader with the grading voice of a life time smoker. L routinely puts me into fits of laughter with the bizarre and perfectly childish things he says.

This past week I had burned myself while using the oven in my kitchen, the burn is rather large and pretty gross looking. I decided to take advantage of my disfigurement and try and gross out some kids. I walked up to L in after care and sat down with him and several other girls and boys. I then asked L if he wanted to see something gross. Being a 9 year-old boy he readily agreed. I pulled up my sleeve and showed him my burn, all the other children let out a delightful "Eeeww..." but L was not phased.

"You think that's gross! my sister mooned me with no underwear so now I know where girls pee from!"