Thursday, July 29, 2004

i found this story linked off of fark, this weird-news site i'm addicted to. i've seen this kind of thing a million times in dumb criminal books, but it never, ever stops being amusing. criminals are stupid.

Promised gifts, they instead get jail

By SAUNDRA AMRHEIN, Times Staff Writer
Published July 29, 2004


TAMPA - They showed up a little nervous with their letters, wondering what they'd won: Bucs season tickets? A 42-inch television? A thousand dollars?

Instead, 11 people scored a trip to the county jail Wednesday after they fell for a sting operation that the Tampa Police Department disguised as a sports promotion.

The department had mailed out 350 letters to suspects with active warrants for arrest on charges ranging from homicide to simple battery, said police spokesman Joe Durkin. Of the 11 who showed up, the most serious offender was a sexual predator who allegedly violated his probation.

The letter described a "once in a lifetime opportunity" to win prizes in a promotion marking the opening of All Star Sports Promotions, which was really a company contrived by TPD.

"The overwhelming success of professional sports teams in the Tampa Bay area is what has drawn us to your region," the letter read. "With the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the Tampa Bay Lightning and hopefully soon the Tampa Bay Devil Rays, we saw a great opportunity."

So did the 11 suspects who showed up at an Ybor City storefront on 16th Street, hoping to claim their prize.

When the suspects walked into the office, which was decorated with sports paraphernalia, they were greeted by a "receptionist" - really an undercover officer. She charmed them and eased their suspicions with talk of the company's recent move from New York.

"Congratulations, you're a winner!" she told them, and then invited them to a back room to get their pictures taken and to select their prize. Once in the room, the suspects were greeted by a dozen officers, who arrested them and put them in handcuffs.

"They were informed, "This is really the Tampa Police Department. We're putting you into custody for a warrant,' " Durkin said. "We had a couple of them laugh."

The entire ruse - the idea of Officer Jamie Bryant - cost the police department about $50, Durkin said. The point was to help officers serve the warrants in a much safer, controlled environment.

"It's always dangerous when you do a pickup on a person," Durkin said.

The message Wednesday by Tampa police to crime suspects: Watch out, more surprises are on the way.

"TPD is going to be looking outside the box at untraditional and new and creative ways to pick up wanted individuals and bring them to justice," Durkin said.

Here are the suspects arrested, and the charges of their warrants:

Dorian Burns, 19, grand theft auto and dealing in stolen property; Ernest Gillard, 25, criminal traffic violations; Phillip Straily, 21, sexual predator, violation of probation on original charge of lewd and lascivious act upon a child; Joshua Cain, 19, improper flotation devices and fishing without a license; Everett Lockett, 38, domestic violence, spouse battery; Katrina Tucker, 32, grand theft and fraud; April Green, 32, violation of probation for worthless checks; Marvin Simmons, 24, felony contempt of court; Robert Wisneski, 26, criminal traffic violations; Ronell Nedd, 44, criminal traffic violations and battery domestic violence; and Darrell Jones, 33, narcotics.

i finally told my aunt everything i needed to tell her last night, about not needing, wanting, or being able to talk to her as much as she wants to talk to me. i finally told her that i found her overbearing. it's great to not be hiding it anymore, but it still hurts like crazy...she didn't take it so well and told me that i had no idea how to be loved.

it's not that i have no idea how to be loved, it's just that i function in a different way.

i'm definitely better off not talking to her for a while. i always feel like she's for the image of the perfect family above all else, and that we all have to play these perfect little roles. i've been doing nothing but acting for years in my family, and i'm sick of the charade. i like to act, but only on stage or in a mock trial round or when i'm supposed to be acting. as far as my human relationships, acting does me no good at all, and all the acting i did for years has taken its toll on me, started to blow up in my face.

she thinks that i need more contact, that part of the reason that my life sucks is because i'm not in contact with my relatives enough. maybe she should stop and think that, because i'm not the same person she thought i was when i was ten, that the fact that they're too overbearing is what drives me up a wall.

i read a column last week in newcity, one of my few weekly reads in any paper or online, fresh hell. it was one of her occasional columns about family gatherings, and her family seems to be very insane and disjointed, with her role as obligatory as mine is. anyway, one of the comments she made was that at home, she was "surrounded by relatives who are supposed to be my DNA equivalents but who I feel as close to as that guy on the bus, the one you steel yourself against brushing up next to when passing by." that's how i feel about my family. DNA doesn't do a thing for me...it's emotional intimacy that counts, and i don't have it with my relatives. i just don't, and at this point in my life, i can't have it any other way. in any meaningful sense, my friends are my family...they're the people who have never betrayed me, the people who i've chosen to spend time with, the people who i can drop my walls around, and just tell them anything and everything. they're the people around whom i don't have to be afraid.

Wednesday, July 28, 2004

i read this on news of the weird today, and i'm endlessly amused by it.

"In 1996, Cambridge (England) University researcher Fiona Hunter, who studied penguins' mating habits for five years, reported that some females apparently allow male strangers to mate with them in exchange for a few nest-building stones, thus providing what Hunter believes is the first observed animal prostitution. According to Dr. Hunter, all activity was done behind the backs of the females' regular mates, and in a few instances, after the sex act, johns gave the females additional stones as sort of a tip. [BBC News, 2-26-98]"

that's awesome. if it's legal for penguins...
two nights ago, my roommates and i went to the white sox game. during every white sox game, they have a medical tip on the jumbotron at some point. the one at the game two nights ago was titled something to the effect of "gender matters", and talked about differences in male and female physiology. being nerds, and therefore prone to yelling random, geeky things at baseball games, we started chanting "social...construct! social...construct!" at the top of our lungs during the announcement.

last night, there was a poker game with a bunch of the guys from the poker club. as always, i was the only girl at the game. i bought in for five bucks, and ended up leaving with forty-six dollars. i took all the guys at the table for lots of their money, pretty much knocking people out of the table at will. i got a huge rush from that--partly because poker is just thrilling, partly because i was making loads of money...and partly because it was all guys at the table.

i really don't know what to think about gender. it's a fun little game to play. i'm biologically female...i identify as such, and i really, really enjoy it. i guess that's sex and not gender, though...sex is a continuum, because there are intersex/hermaphroditic/(*insert term here) people who were born with biological characteristics of both sexes, or pre-op transgender people who are taking hormones that mean they are getting biological characteristics of the "other" sex. still, most people are one sex or the other. that's really not what interests me all that much anyway...just because everyone else at the poker table has a penis or broader shoulders or no big, curvy breasts doesn't mean in itself that i get any more or less of a rush taking their money.

gender is more interesting to me...maybe because it is a construct of some sort. "male" and "female" roles seem to me to be a social construct, most likely...and since historically males have had more power, more leeway to live their lives on their own terms, i do get a kick out of thwarting them at stereotypically male things. i'm not a very feminine girl by any stretch of the imagination...if you look at a continuum of gender, from "male" to "female", as the mainstream of society would idealize them (i guess, from ball-scratching macho man to barbie doll), i'm about as close to the ball-scratching macho man as you can get without actually feeling like i'm a guy trapped in a woman's body. i like my female body...i'm just not soft and "feminine". i often dress in men's clothing, and i like to keep my hair very short. i'm brash and blunt and can get pretty aggressive. my mannerisms are pretty much...manly. even so, i identify as a female, and as a feminist. women's victories are my victories...i guess because it means i have the freedom to be like i am, as opposed to being put in the nice little cooking-and-cleaning-and-long-hair-and-dresses box that women have been put in for time immemorial. i can go out and work. i can go out and play poker with the boys. i don't have to be married by the age of eighteen. i can be attracted to women, men, or both. (okay, so not as many people have wrapped their heads around the last one...we're getting there, i promise, or at least i hope...then again, although my sexuality is close with my gender identity, i don't think that one defines the other. but i guess that's another rant for another day.)

anyway, i don't know where i'm really going with this, what my thesis is. mainly that i really don't have a cogent theory of gender that i'm happy with, a cogent idea of what about gender matters, or why it matters, as something anywhere beyond one of the continuums of personal identity.

Tuesday, July 27, 2004

my name is jalen pierce boyd. b-o-y-d.

i always loved picking names for my mock trial characters. often they came with a first and last name, and sometimes a middle initial. i'd pick a middle name. if it came with initials...although it was an enormous copout by the case writer, it was a bonanza for me since i got to pick my own first and middle names for the characters.

the first two years i did mock trial, i was directed by my best friend, who picked the names with me. i made sure that the names were not too effeminate or boring, but the names that we picked together were definitely girls' names, mainly on his request. at least they were cool ones, strong ones, and i got some shoutouts in there. like cj calhoon...candace juliana. juliana, for the juliana theory. a band i like. the only time i was left to my own devices in picking up a middle name was when we winged a dr. donna racheter for the advisors. i picked the middle name breslin, since i liked the sound of it. my best friend asked me what i was on.

this year i had a lot more leeway...none of my attorneys were particularly worried or concerned about the middle names that i picked. therefore, they were completely my choices, my creations...and they were definitely androgynous to male. several of them were music references. patricia bivens' middle name was lucas...as in the first name of one of the guitarists in inept. michael harmon (yes, i was actually playing a guy, dressing in drag, the whole nine yards) was ward, as in scooter ward from cold. several weren't...heck, one of them was even almost girlish. one night i was drinking with one of my friends, and he said that stacy davis' middle name should be tara, as a shoutout to his sister. therefore, i was stacy tara davis. anyway...i guess the point i'm trying to make here, though, is it was usually pretty easy to describe why i picked a name for a witness.

not so much with j.p. boyd. jalen pierce boyd. pierce was easy enough to explain, that was named after taylor miranda pierce, a witness that i had played second year at nationals, a witness that was a mock trial masterpiece courtesy of me and my best friend. jalen is a little toughter, a lot tougher. if anyone asked, i'd tell them i picked it because it was one of my favourite androgynous names. that's true, it is one of my favourites. but, it's more than that. it's gone through several spellings...jaylynne...jalen...but that name is my alter ego of sorts. jalen has nothing to hide. jalen is everything that i can't say out loud, or at least everything that i couldn't say out loud a year ago, a year and a half ago, when she was fully conceived in my imagination. jalen doesn't pull any punches. jalen is a selfish little twentysomething, going crazy because it's fulfilling and it's fun. it's confusing, since over the last year, year and a half, since my breakup with my ex back in may of 2003, i've done a really good job of being more like her and less like...what i used to be. the transition isn't complete, but it's happened enough for me to be confused about where jalen ends and where nicolle begins. i'm more blunt, more brash, more insane than i used to be, and i like it. i don't think about her as much as i used to, just because the line is so blurry. still, i think about her sometimes. i disappear into her, become her, late at night when i'm reading, or i'm writing, or i'm dreaming. i wonder what she would do, if she'd be satisfied. she's a part of me.

perhaps her defining characteristic, though, is sexuality. it would be wrong to say she's consumed by it, but it would be right to say it's something she revels in. boys want her. girls want her. she wants some of them back...takes what she wants, when she wants it. if she wants to flit about, having fling after fling, she does. none of that female virgin/whore dichotomy/taboo. it just doesn't matter. she conducts her sex life on her own terms, she's bisexual and unabashed about that fact. if she's in a relationship, it's only because she wants to be, only because she enjoys it and loves it, not because she has to be. (then again, so's nicolle...which is a good thing.) if she's single, she's not crying in her oatmeal...she's going out and enjoying that. when it is a relationship, the more giving, less impulsive nicolle takes over a little bit, because that's really not so much jalen's thing...but then again, that's why she's an alter ego. jalen's on the bar scene, jalen's in the bedroom, jalen doesn't have so much a heart and a brain as she does impulses and a body. she's a tigress.

i really don't know what a fictitious hockey team owner has to do with jalen, but it was great to use the name. that's the story behind it.

thank you, no further questions.

Monday, July 26, 2004

maybe the last post needs a smidge of explanation...as in, i'm going to vegas. next month. :) some of the kansans are going to vegas for a 21st birthday...i was invited earlier this summer, didn't know for sure if i was going to go or not. i probably shouldn't, but i'm going to go anyway...more time with my boy (it's like i'm spending the whole first half of august with him!!!) and time to hang out with more mockers. :) found a cheap ticket on priceline today...i have to leave town at 6am the day i leave, but whatever...it was dirt cheap ($150), and therefore awesome. i can't wait. i love las vegas...i went back in may with my boyfriend and his family and i had a blast, i'm hoping this time will also be loads of fun--and maybe i'll have a better time at the poker tables than last time. :)

wow, this post is laden with smilie faces.
vegas, baby, vegas! :)

Sunday, July 25, 2004

friday and saturday were two of the most random, goofy, spontaneous days i've had in recent memory, and i loved it. i did indeed get on that train to south bend less than an hour after my last post on here. there's this mocker at notre dame that posts on perjuries, and i talk to every so often online. i'd never met him face to face before...i'd met a few of his teammates in various rounds, or in des moines, but not met him yet. he posted on perjuries that he was making this italian chicken and pasta dish, and that anyone who wanted to should go to south bend. pretty much jokingly, i replied that hmmm, maybe i should get on a train to south bend after work (since the south shore line runs through hyde park all the way to south bend). not two minutes later, my cell phone rings--he was calling me back, telling me that i should indeed get on that train. i had originally been planning to spend the weekend in michigan, but since that had fallen through the floor maybe two hours before, i was completely free until 1:30 on saturday. so, i decided that i would indeed go to south bend, since his roommates were okay with some random mocker from chicago coming over to spend the night.

it was indeed a blast. the dinner that he made was super-yummy...i hadn't had pasta that good in forever. i hung out and talked to him and a bunch of his friends that were there (his roommates, their boyfriends, and another couple they knew...it was kinda funny that my friend and i were the only non-couple there). then we watched zoolander--and my friend spoiled a pan of brownies by leaving them on a burner that he had left on from cooking the pasta. oopsie! we harassed him for that, and i shall continue to. :) i stayed there overnight and took the train home in the morning...super low-key, but lots and lots of fun. hopefully i'll go back to notre dame sometime to hang out, or he (and my other ND mock buddies) will come here for fun or scrimmages.

got back from south bend around 12:45 on saturday, just in time to grab food and meet some of my friends here at 1:30 to go to the north side. one of my friends had proposed that we get together and play this game called whirlyball, which he described as being kind of like lacrosse on go-karts. i was intrigued...it sounded crazy and lots of fun. there were a total of ten of us who went, and we played for an hour. it was AMAZING! we drove these bumper cars that steered with handles instead of wheels, so it only took one hand. our other hand held a scoop, and the idea was to use the scoop to pass the ball to teammates and eventually get it to hit the goal. there was the red team (red bumpercars) and the yellow team (yellow bumpercars). lots of scrambles for possession with the ball on the floor...lots of hitting each other with bumpercars, lots of mayhem. it was AWESOME...definitely worth the twenty bucks i paid to do it. i have to go do it again sometime... after whirlyball we went for pizza (bacino's...yummy stuffed pizza!), and then i went home.

home last night was really low-key. i talked to the boy for almost two hours...i would have talked longer, except that one of my friends was coming over. i never can very well hang up the phone when i talk to him. it's so cute, because he's equally bad at hanging up the phone when he talks to me. i'm going crazy because i haven't seen him in three weeks now (since the 4th of july weekend...), but i'm flying up to kansas city on saturday morning to spend the week with him. his family is going to the lake of the ozarks, and i'm going with. :) i absolutely can't wait...it'll be a really fun trip, a week on the water...and nine days with him. i haven't had more than six days with him at a time since we got together, so nine days is just...crazy and unheard-of and wonderful. it makes me happy.

after i got off the phone with him i hung out with a couple friends for a while, just chatted and watched bad tv (elimidate, jerry springer...). then i crashed. i slept from 12:30-9:30, grabbed a little food, and then crashed again from about 10:30-4. i've done nothing today. maybe i'll play a poker game if it happens, maybe i'll hang out with some friends. i don't know. i have a headache. i have cobwebs in my head. i'm still kind of sleepy, despite the fact that i spent all day sleeping. there's still a huge dark cloud over the apartment, and i can't do anything to move it away. blah. i wish it was saturday.

Friday, July 23, 2004

in less than an hour, i might be on a train to south bend to go hang out with people from notre dame.

holy spontaneity, batman. :)

Thursday, July 22, 2004

i'm really only thinking in song quotes right now, so i should really only post in them too. i'm just too messed up right now to be able to come up with my own words.

"i feel so blessed
i feel useless
i feel worthless
i feel contaminated"
"Seven Headed And Full Of Life"
by Tidewater Grain

"all the world loves things of beauty and intrigue
these two things i've never had one"
"Ugly"
by Cold

"what about when buildings fall
what about that midnight phone call
the one that wakes you from your peace
i am not
i am not
i am not in need"
"What About Everything"
by Carbon Leaf
i don't deserve to be in heaven. i don't deserve to be in hell. i deserve to be somewhere in between. but, i'm not. i feel like i'm in hell, with the help of people from heaven, and there's nothing in between. i belong, i don't belong.

and i hate dichotomy.

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

it's raining. no softball today.

no umbrella either. i don't know what i'm waiting for, but i'm waiting. maybe for the rain to let up, but that's not looking likely. it's just so...dreary.

i should be home. i'm not. call me the worst damage control plan ever, i guess.

when's the next bus?

Tuesday, July 20, 2004

i'm on tilt. at the card table, at life, at everything. i'm on tilt.
i've learned a lesson over this last few weeks. the worst things happen to the best people. the best things happen to the worst people. there's nothing we can do to change that.

i know my friends, the people that surround me, fall into that former category. it's unfair. it's hell. it makes no sense whatsoever.

i can't decide what category i fall into. the floor's dropping out from under me because the floor's dropping out from under everyone else...i'm a wreck. but, i still am surrounded by all those wonderful people...whereas all those wonderful people are stuck with...me. i've always fancied myself the worst of the bunch, for good reason. it's not an objectively long end of the stick since i'm still going insane, but...i feel like i have a longer end of the stick than anyone else. and i don't deserve it. i just don't, just like everyone else doesn't deserve what's happening to them.

none of this is making any sense whatsoever. i need to wake up. we all do. my faith in life is dying, dying, dying. (although i guess i'm convinced it will never die completely, as even nothing that has happened this week has annihilated my faith in God.)

all i know is things are so messed up around me right now, and there's not a darn thing beyond just existing, beyond just being there for everyone, that i can do. i know it means a lot to everyone, and i'm glad that i can do it, but i still feel completely helpless.

Monday, July 19, 2004

i love you, Linda Ronstadt.
 
and screw you, aladdin casino.
 
see if i gamble there next time i go to vegas.  (and i'm glad i DIDN'T gamble there when i was in vegas back in may.)
 
not everyone has to like michael moore, sure, but you shouldn't get FIRED for doing so, you shouldn't get FIRED for praising his movie.
 
and you shouldn't throw cocktails at her for saying it either.  i don't like george bush, but i don't throw cocktails at his supporters.

Friday, July 16, 2004

still tornadic.
 
i have a few lines of poetry/rant/whatever that i wrote a couple days ago that i will post here, but i don't have it on me...it's on my desk.  i'm in the stacks, evading work.
 
at least it's friday.
 
life is looking up, though.  some of the drama seems to be abating...and the drama that's getting worse is so far away that it's only a part-time thing for me to go crazy about.  better than any of that, i get to see my boyfriend in two weeks.  :)  going on vacation with him and his family...it'll be a week of jet skiing, boating, and just goofing off by the lake.  i can't wait...i've always wanted to go jet skiing...and even better, i get to spend a week with him.

Tuesday, July 13, 2004

it's been a while, i know. almost a week. sue me.

everything around me seems to be whirling like a tornado. none of it is quite real, but it's quite enough to stress me out and make it crazy.

and just about none of it is appropriate to post here.

that's why i haven't updated this thing despite the fact that i have a completely private computer this week at work, at which i can shirk all the work i want.

on a lighter, less obscured note, we threw an apartment party this weekend. that was lots of fun...even on the short (ten hours' or so) notice that we gave guests, we still had lots of people come to our party. that was happy. :) i liked seeing lots of people. we had plenty of booze...hopefully the space will be more cleared out, more amenable for a party next time we throw one, but it was still a pretty good first party for us to have at the apartment. the apartment also didn't get completely trashed, which was happy and fun.

alright, song time. song of the day. it's ringing in my head.

"cling and clatter"
by lifehouse

too many voices it won't take long
which one's right and which one's wrong
and yours is most likely to be misunderstood
screaming in tongues
at the top of my lungs
'til I find you 'til you found me
somehow i always knew that you would

and i am contemplating matters
all this cling and clatter
in my head and what you said
is ringing ringing faster

and it's all good if you would
stop the world from making sense
and if i could just realize
it doesn't really matter
doesn't really matter
doesn't really matter

if i could touch
the sound of silence now
you know i would if i knew how
to make these intentions
come around

and i'm hearing without listening
and believing every word that
you're not saying
speaking without a sound

and i am contemplating matters
all this cling and clatter
in my head and what you said
is ringing ringing faster

and it's all good if you would
stop the world from making sense
and if i could just realize
it doesn't really matter
doesn't really matter
doesn't really matter

trapped inside
of these four walls
walking brainless muppet dolls
mushroom face
beneath the tangles
bleeding silhouette inside
dancing like an angel would

and it's all good if you would
stop the world from making sense
and if i could just realize
it doesn't really matter
doesn't really matter
doesn't really matter

and it's all good if you would
stop the world from making sense
and if i could just realize
it doesn't really matter
doesn't really matter
all this cling and clatter

Thursday, July 08, 2004

screw the tagboard. it's broken. no one posts in it anyway. if you want to say hi, comment on an entry, or email me. it's that simple.

(and i'd love you forever if you said hi, it would make my day to know that someone is reading this, my little corner of the internet.)
i still haven't completely recovered from the fourth of july weekend. i still don't know what day it is...or i know in my head, but my body still thinks it's tuesday, or some otherwise indeterminate date. i didn't want to leave kansas this weekend. i never want to leave kansas. i spent two hours talking to him on the phone last night, and another five hours or so talking to him when i was at work yesterday. i just can't stop talking to him... i guess maybe it's alright that we're long-distance, because if he were here in chicago all the time, my friends would never see me, or at least never see me without him right there. i swore before that i wouldn't fall flat on my face like this for anyone, but i guess i hadn't been expecting this, didn't see it coming... oh well. it's gotten beyond the point that it's weird to think of myself in a relationship. it's been three months already (shocking, i know!), and it's still just the nicest, most naturally-flowing relationship of my life. i'm just...happy.

well, back to work, my break is over. back to the drudgery of the basement. if it weren't for headphones and daydreams down there...and for AIM upstairs...i'd be toast.

and...i'm smug today. i'm at work at this job, but i'm working on a cover letter to apply for another job. take that, library.