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Category: journal

12/18/06 08:38 - 38ºF - ID#22050

So get this...I can draw?

December 18, 2006: So get this...I can draw?

I'm currently downtown at SPoT thinking about the various new options that have opened up to me since I realized that I seem to be capable of drawing. Many years ago (about ten) I stopped drawing, and started focusing on my writing abilities rather intently.

In the years in between I have not drawn much of anything at all. In fact I began to believe that it had almost left me entirely. About six months ago I started thinking about trying to write a graphic novel or a comic strip, as a thing to try. So I tried my hand at attempting to draw some cartoons, got discouraged by my complete failure and started trying to outsource the job of illustrating to other people.

Unable to find a single person who was interested in illustrating a comic strip with me, I eventually gave up entirely on the project idea, and sent it over to "The Pile" to ferment until another day.

About a week ago though, someone I know challenged me to attempt to draw a portrait of someone from a picture. Always open to random creative challenges, I jumped on it. Swept away the ten years of dust from my drawing pencils, now found buried deep in a closet, and set about the task. As I went along, I was surprised as it all began to come back. A little bit at a time, shading, lines, illusions to create lines. I churned out a halfway decent looking portrait, the sort of piece that impresses most people but you keep thinking is slightly off in the nose or eyebrow.

Happy with this realization, that I have a new resource to tap, I set about thinking of ways to implement it. Oh yeah, I realized, I have that thing on "The Pile". So here is yet another project idea on the queue. ha ha.

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Permalink: So_get_this_I_can_draw_.html
Words: 323
Location: Buffalo, NY

Category: journal

12/15/06 03:10 - 45ºF - ID#22049


December 15, 2006: Uncertainty

My life is currently in a state of uncertainty. Like some sort of quantum level particle, I feel like I am heading everywhere and no where at the same time. Its exciting and stressful. There is so much that I can do, and yet because I lack the time to do it, it might be as though I couldn't.

As I rest so close to graduation, and with my current financial issues, so close to not being able to continue in school. I am filled with the excitement of what each of these possibilities will bring me. The first, if I land the money to continue, I will go to school and continue on this current path towards graduation sometime in the spring or summer. The second, if I cannot land the money to continue, I will go to work full time with the company by whom I am employed. Under the second, I will finally have the room and time to expand my creative works, yet will be unable to expand into the professional world very far. Under the first, I will have little time for creative work, and will be able to expand into the professional world as far as my ambition and politics allows.

To decide a question like this you have to ask what I value more, and for what reasons... That would be a good question, that I can not answer.

Come What May.

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Permalink: Uncertainty.html
Words: 244
Location: Buffalo, NY

Category: journal

12/14/06 03:30 - 40ºF - ID#22048

Driving Sitting Backwards, One Handed

December 14, 2006: Driving Sitting Backwards, One Handed

Maybe I suffer from some sort of disorder, or this is just what people like me tend to think, but my life always feels like its heading into a death spiral. This feeling of being completely out of control has made for some very interesting dreams that my incredibly active imagination create.

In these dreams I am sitting backwards in the back seat of a car. I am usually steering the car with one arm, reaching over the front seats to grab the wheel. The accelerator is set by a brick, and I am usually heading down some unbelievably busy street with no brakes. The best I am able to do is try to minimize the damage I create as I fly down the street. Bouncing off of one parked car, avoiding another moving car coming in the other direction; I just jerk the wheel from one side to the other afraid to crash and afraid to continue on down the street at full speed.

This is a dream of my life. For the most part my life is out of my control except for a few basic side to side movements.

Now let me be clear, this is not a plea for advice, I know exactly what I should do, and like the good marching lemming that I seem to be of late, I will do it. So, you wonder, what the fuck is he talking about?

I am talking about school.

When you're a kid everyone tells you that going to college is the greatest achievement. At least they tell you this when you are born in a working class neighborhood in Buffalo. They tell you this because the people who go to college are so much more successful than the people in your neighborhood.

What the people in your neighborhood have no idea about when they tell you this is, that if you are smart in anyway at all, you will eventually run into teachers who will waste your life. You will want to explore the topic in one direction, and those bastards will tell you that that is not what they are going to teach. You will know that they are wrong, and you will have to reproduce their wrong work back at them so you can get a nice shiny A to keep your GPA up.

What they don't tell you is that you'll reach a point when everything you do in college will no longer feel like instruction, it will feel like obstruction. And oh! Oh, everyone back in your neighborhood, and your friends, they will tell you to just do the work and get out. But what they don't know is that every single assignment you complete for these obstructer's feels like treason to your own intelligence.

What they don't tell you is that every time you push up against these obstructer's they will have that much more capacity to make your life a living hell. Educational institutions are a joke and a half more than half the time, everyone whose ever been in them has seen it. You are expected to march where they make you march, open your mouth when they tell you, try to chew the sized bits they break off for you, and swallow. Always swallow what and when they tell you to, and you'll always get an A.

(Thats all that matters anyways right? Just the A.)

I don't work this way!

I work best in a situation where all the information is put in front of me, and no one demands that I memorize terms. Application of concepts is something that I excel at, but remembering the terms this particular text book writer decides to call that concept is a waste, and I suck at it.

If you gave me a text, a problem, and two hour period. I could probably figure out what I needed to know to solve the problem, and whats more I would be able to present an impromptu speech on it when I was done. And I would not forget it.

But they give me: In marketing, what is a _______ ?
and they ask me: To choose - A, B, C, D, or E.

I want to blow their useless brains out. If anyone ever wants to know why critical thinking is not a skill that our graduates possess, this is why.

Thats all for now. Thanks for you interest,


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Permalink: Driving_Sitting_Backwards_One_Handed.html
Words: 746
Location: Buffalo, NY

Category: journal

12/12/06 01:01 - 41ºF - ID#22047

Today I tried to burn down my house.

Dear (E:Strippers),

Thanks to about a dozen of you repeatedly telling me that I should take up posting here again as I walked around (e:enknot) 's party on Saturday night, I have returned to try to keep an online personal journal here about whats going on with me.

For those of you who do not know, I am EJTower, the guy who was walking around with the laptop and a microphone at the party? I am 6'6" tall ? Putting it together through your happy drunken haze? Good.

So here I go, my good faith start. Thanks for your interest.


December 11, 2006: Today I tried to burn down my house.

In the morning, you understand, I am incredibly incoherent. This problem has plagued me for many years and as such I have designed my life to be a post-noon life for the betterment of all humanity, but mostly myself.

On those rare occasions that my life gives me cause to rise before mid-day I do my best to get a hearty breakfast, otherwise I am in the habit of being rather temperamental. Down right asshole-ish if you must.

Today was such a pre-noon day in need of a hearty breakfast start. So I turned to the pantry and pulled out an oatmeal bar; the kind that are delightfully tasty when warmed in a microwave. Then instead of proceeding to make the oatmeal bar in the microwave as I should, I instead made a short tangential trip to the freezer to get two hot-pockets for lunch whilst at work.

In my morning stupor I decided it would be a good idea to preview the directions for the making of these hot pockets, so that upon arrival at work I would not be completely helpless in front of my coworkers. Coworkers who delight in making fun of the helpless for no other reason than they enjoy being mean. Anyways, I read the directions on the hot pocket box:

Two minutes on high, rotate once after one minute to ensure full cooking.

Then I broke open the package for my oatmeal bar to allow proper ventilation of steam, as per its directions, set the microwave and proceeded to wander upstairs to check out the work of the painters who had come to work on our house a few days previous.

Satisfied with the competency of the painting crew which was by now three days gone with the landlords money, and anyways out of ear shot of my angry morning painting criticism; I returned to the kitchen to find the microwave beeping happily while it filled the room with thick gray smoke.

With retrospective eyes I can now see how the microwave might have thought it was being helpful, seeing as it had successfully completed the task of cooking the oatmeal bar to my specifications. At the time, however, I could give the microwave nothing but my total scorn because I wanted the oatmeal bar done well, not well-done.

Now, before I relate to you the comedy of errors that proceeded from the moment of my finding the thick gray smoke emanating from the joyfully beeping microwave. You should know that the error lies in having been forced to wake before noon, everything else is a sort of casual catastrophe caused by that situation. For example it was clearly not my fault that, after reading the directions for the hot pocket, I proceeded to type two minutes into the keypad of the microwave. A microwave which just assumed without asking that I preferred my oatmeal bar charred to a crisp and covered in molten plastic for good measure.

For the record the difference between what you type for a hot pocket, and what you type for an oatmeal bar is only one zero. 2-0-0-start for hot pockets, 2-0-start for oatmeal bars. Now onto my comedy of errors.

Seeing as the room was already filled with gray smoke, from ceiling to floor, I decided to open the door of the microwave to make it harder for me to breath. Now filling my lungs with gray smoke I decided it was time to try to open the windows. Our kitchen windows are the crank kind, but you see some time ago both of the crank leavers disappeared, and were replaced by a single set of channel lock pliers.

So now that I was choking on the gray smoke, and unable to breath, did I run from the room? No no, like my diligent microwave chef i continued on longer! After finally getting the windows open I hung out them and scoffed out the smoke from my lungs.

I then proceeded to run about and clean the whole room. ah, there is more but it is not quite so much fun as all that. thus dear reader, i will give you the short of the rest of my catastrophic morning:

1 burnt oatmeal bar

1 broken glass

1 soaked pair of pants

1 instance of hanging myself on a door knob by the cord of my headphones

1 late arrival at work who smells like an arsonist having just completed his job

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Permalink: Today_I_tried_to_burn_down_my_house_.html
Words: 856
Location: Buffalo, NY

Category: cf podcast

08/13/06 11:59 - 64ºF - ID#22046

Podcast Episode 1 of Cognizant Flux

Over the past few months I have been impossibly busy with school, but during that time I bought a microphone and began a project I have wanted to do for some time. My own podcast. So it is with a bit of a girlish gleee that I introduce: Cognizant Flux
Episode 1: The Test Signal [MP3]

Part I: Editorial - The Challenge of The Future
By ~E.J. Tower

Part II: Sketch - Zombie City Day 3
Johnny Left ~E.J. Tower
Theadore Kazonski K. Tower
Zombie K. Tower

Part III: Mediaddict 1 - Net Laws
By ~E.J. Tower

Music: Fade Away Helios
By Somnambulist
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Permalink: Podcast_Episode_1_of_Cognizant_Flux.html
Words: 103
Location: Buffalo, NY

Category: explore buffalo

06/04/06 09:49 - 65ºF - ID#22045

Kitty and The Rose

Whilst I was out walking today I stoped to take a picture of a rose and look who is in the background.


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Permalink: Kitty_and_The_Rose.html
Words: 24
Location: Buffalo, NY

Category: explore buffalo

05/08/06 10:12 - 64ºF - ID#22044

Biking Report Week of May 8, 2006

In the past week I have biked a great many miles, and have learned some importaint things about biking and getting around our city in general.

Lesson One: Don't stop to talk to strangers on your bike. If you do, then don't let them get within reaching distance of you.

Now let me deflate the drama by saying that my material possessions and I are perfectly alright. I was on my way back home from south buffalo on bailey near clinton street when a guy on the side of the road whose car had broken down shouted to me.

He was a rather large white guy of about 230lbs and 5'9" his car had two flat tires. He asked me if I had seen a bus on my way out of South Buffalo, I said that I didn't. But as we were speaking he began to close in on the 15 feet I had left between him and I. His next question as he approached me on my bike was "can you give me a ride to Broadway?" My "oh shit" meter hit about 10 at that point and I peddled away from him a bit. Said that I couldn't and left him there.

I don't know if he was serious about riding my handle bars. I would think it would be clear to anyone who can see my skinny physique that it would have been impossible at best. But I was definately very serious about him not getting close enough to give himself a ride on my bike.

Lesson Two: I have more problems with the residents of south buffalo than I do the residents of the east side.

For some time now I have said that this is the case. In terms of people deliberately confronting me in a hostile manner, south buffalo wins for most number of times.

Those baggy jeaned kids in south buffalo have some terf ideas in their heads I think.

Lesson Three: If you make good time one trip, but pull a muscle, thats just the same as making bad time for two days.

Today I made it from SPoT down town to my house around the walden and harlem area in 30 minutes. But I pulled a muscle in my right knee. I am hoping I will be fine in a day or two. Being fine by morning would be nice though.

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Permalink: Biking_Report_Week_of_May_8_2006.html
Words: 398
Location: Buffalo, NY

Category: explore buffalo

05/05/06 02:16 - 52ºF - ID#22043

Out of this Kingdom of Rust

Out of this Kingdom of Rust
By: E.J. Tower

We live in the bones of our grandparents economy,
Worshipfully preserved; behold its corpse in gruesome detail!
Empty eye socket buildings staring out across this kingdom of rust,
All safely guarded against the arrival of change.

We people of no name,
Looking for identity in ruins of what was,
Seeing not the self-made self in what could be
If only our chains would rust away too.

We who dream with such hope,
Each day set out to build an empire out of vestiges,
Each day returning with bleeding dusty hands,
Our undertakings thwarted by clout unseen. Fret not!

We are the flames of life breathed into this dead blast furnace,
To smelt away the rusted impure.
We rise each day from ashes, and spread wide our fiery wings to fly.
They cannot stand each day in crucible for long.

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Permalink: Out_of_this_Kingdom_of_Rust.html
Words: 149
Location: Buffalo, NY

Category: explore buffalo

05/04/06 02:30 - 71ºF - ID#22042

Biking Buffalo

I told myself that at $3.00/ Gal I would start riding my bike to anywhere that I could reach in 30 min or less. Well It hit $3.00/ gal and I have been riding my bike to everywhere but school (UB North Campus).

Its fucking awesome! I have found that I am in much better shape than I thought I was in, and now I am exploring buffalo because I am not taking the highways. When you aren't in a car you really notice the scenery.

I have been looking at some maps of the city recently and from my house on the east side, everything is pretty much 30 minutes from where I live by bike. When I say everything, I mean everything I do on Elmwood, on Allen Street, Everything Downtown, and Everything I do out on Transit Road.

Trips I have Planned For The Coming Week:

1.) SPoT DT by bike via Walden To Genesse

2.) Allen St by bike via Walden straight shot

3.) North of Elmwood Heights by bike via a very sketchy route I keep having second thoughts about.

Explore Buffalo Topic

I am also going to be doing some biking around sections of the city that most folks don't go to, mainly my neighborhood and the areas between south buffalo and the east side. I hope to get a camera to take pictures. I intend to post them under the above topic heading on this bloggy.
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Permalink: Biking_Buffalo.html
Words: 236
Location: Buffalo, NY

Category: philosophy

05/04/06 11:17 - 69ºF - ID#22041

Rain Walking

Rain is very innocuous; it is water that falls from the sky onto the planet. It has been an essential part of every human culture that has ever existed, and remains a vital part in our lives today. It brings life to everything around us. The Navajo used to rejoice at the sight of the rain, and go out into it. Yet, we are saddened when we wake upon a rainy day. We cringe and run for cover at first sign of those drops on our skin.

Why do we act this way? It is a sign of what we have come to value in society. Some of us cringe and run for cover because we want to protect the array of electronic equipment we carry. Other’s cringe to protect their vanity; be it make-up, hair, or clothing. I am not, as many others are, against these two reasons. I have no problem with people who wish to protect their investments in communications, and image; it is all perfectly reasonable.

The problem that I do see though is our inability to let go. Even when we have our equipment firmly secured in our waterproof bags, and we are not dressed to kill; still even then we cringe because we cannot let go, we do not relax. In a world of increasing complexity and ever more demanding responsibilities, we must learn to relax.

Ask yourself when you see the rain coming down; do I have to run this time? Is it really going to hurt my clothes to get wet on a spring or summer day? If not, take the time to let go. Learning to walk in the rain and coming to accept being wet, takes time. The whole point of rain walking is releasing the habit of cringing, of realizing that you are safe in the rain, and that it is not your enemy. It is a practice of active awareness, of brining yourself to break with ingrained reactions, of knowing if the reasons for your actions are founded or not.

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Permalink: Rain_Walking.html
Words: 344
Location: Buffalo, NY



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paul said to twisted
Hello from the east coast! It took me so long to see this, it might as well have arrived in a lette...

joe said to Ronqualityglas
I really don't think people should worry about how their eyelids work. Don't you?...

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Welcome to (e:strip)!...

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oh Jan Magnussen ;)...