Chi had some *interesting* proposals for how to spend my birthday, and yes, I meant that exactly how it sounded. 

Listen while you read to “Inside the Circus Tent”, a Panache piece that is representative of our dance-like repertoire in odd time signatures that may end up on a potential EP of our music in that style if TPO survives long enough and we are successful in amassing sufficient funding to pull that off.

November 17-18, 2012

To my utter shock and amazement, out of the clear blue sky Chi mentioned that he regretted the way he totally ruined my 40th birthday six years ago, and wanted to make it up to me. He even apologized for it. That is extreme. He NEVER apologizes for his abominable behaviour, which apparently is a standard trait of pathological narcissists.

The next morning (Sunday), he started up at me about his obsession with the end of the world according to the Mayan calendar scheduled for December 21st, 2012 (four days after my birthday), but before I was able to successfully make an about-face and retreat to my office room rolling my eyes and shaking my head, he told me that he had found an ad in the Japanese classifieds from someone selling at half price a 7-day package at a global chain of fairly posh hotels (by musicians’ standards at least). Since the world was scheduled to end, we might as well do something fun, right? He proposed to pay for this with the proceeds from his past very busy week of acting work. (Chi, did you forget that you still have to get your truck into a condition that can pass the smog test in order to renew the registration, which at this point is coming up on two months past due since you haven’t been able to amass sufficient funding for that before the registration expired, nearly doubling the cost?)

Anyway, I bit down on the hook and got excited about the concept of getting away from the prison of my day-to-day existence for a week in decent accommodations. That fantasy was short-lived, however. As we were driving to the farmers market to do our weekly produce shopping, he continued on, stream of consciousness style, about how we should do a 2-week tour — that I (moi) should set up performance dates everywhere I know people (and do every fucking thing else to make it all happen, of course) — and we would stay in the nice hotels every couple days, and stay in low-budget shit-dives or sleep in the truck the rest of the time. Fucking awesome! Sounds like an absolutely splendid idea…NOT!!! My enthusiasm immediately vanished and I became quite depressed. My eyes glazed over and I abruptly checked out.

Why? Ok, let’s break it down. Before anything else happens, the thought of having to endure two straight weeks of Chi with no respite is difficult to bear. So is having all of my paid time off from my day job consumed in one go, spent as described above, leaving me with nothing so I’d have to use one of my precious sick days in case anything comes up that I have to do. Those are perpetually in the red zone since I have to use so many of them to deal with Chi’s numerous medical problems, leaving practically none for me on the occasions when I get sick. As in *sick* of having to deal with the sort of continuous, ongoing insanity that leaves me so totally knackered that I can’t even face having to spend an entire day of sitting in my office at my day job not having to actually even do anything.

And why, oh why must he make every. fucking. thing. so insanely complicated and distressing?! Spend two straight weeks driving all over hell and half of Georgia, packing and unpacking, checking in and out of hotels, etc.? Sounds like a fucking whale of a time to me! Pffft! And what was that about ME having to spend days on end on the phone cold calling shit-dive bars begging them to let us work for free since we don’t have a massive nationwide audience, plus deal with the endless ancillary bullshit in the event that anyone were to actually book us? And this is supposed to constitute a birthday present??!! FUCK. NO! And let’s not forget that I’ll have to go back to the day job as a desperately stressed out, exhausted, sleep-deprived wreck with no paid time off left. The sodding hell with that idea!

On the upside, at least if we are traveling by car, we can bring the Panache Cats along with us, so having to board them or arrange for someone trustworthy to kitty sit for us is one potentially excruciating and costly hassle we wouldn’t have to deal with. Nevertheless….

When my total lack of enthusiasm for this idea finally registered, he changed tack and suggested doing something that actually might be fun, like go to Spain and just chillax there for a week. I could get into that. Another option he suggested was going to southern Japan where I had lived when I was an exchange student and have always wanted to visit again and see more of. I was totally down for that.

However that evening after he was thoroughly drunk and high, this thing took a turn for the worse. Surprise! Right around Election Day (Nov. 6th), a referendum was held in Puerto Rico about their petitioning for US statehood (I’m not even going to get into that here), and that made the international news. Chi got a wild hair to move to Puerto Rico, where he apparently believed he would be able to secure viable work playing percussion in restaurants. Anyway, Sunday evening he hit me up with his latest brainstorm: since the hotel chain in question has a presence in PR, we should go there, and bring our instruments and cameras and shoot a video of him playing percussion. Of course I would have to do all the work to set everything up, shoot and edit the video, etc. Great. Just what I need: another knock-down, drag-out video project to add to my existing pile of the same! Yeah…happy fucking birthday from Chi’s Theatre of the Absurd!

He then began yapping at me to enlist the support of some film industry professionals I know to do the actual filming and editing (and marketing — of course all at their own expense!), and on and on and on. Needless to say, I shut down the minute he said “video shoot”. He kept going on about how this was going to become world famous for I can’t for the life of me remember what reason if I even correctly deciphered it in the first place, and on and on with lots more drug-addled, insane nonsense. Wait a minute! WTF??????!!!!! Did you not preface this whole thing by telling me it was supposed to be a gift to ME to compensate ME for YOU having destroyed my birthday six years ago (and several more since then)???? Oh, that’s right! (smacks head) It’s ALWAYS all about you, no matter how you try to pitch it. Your towering narcissism is exceeded only by your towering narcissism.

I just sat there politely waiting for him to shut the fuck up and/or dismiss me (which he eventually did) so I could retreat back to my office room to write this post before I forgot what happened.


EPILOGUE: Somewhat surprisingly, the evening ended peacefully, with me carrying my half-finished glass of Piper-Heidsieck (the second to last bottle left of our champagne cache that Chi opened for no particular reason yesterday evening) to my office to write this, and while doing so, running through the day’s events made me laugh until my stomach hurt instead of ending in a big fight with the neighbours calling the police.