Wednesday, June 30, 2010

MARVELous Summer

Hey Ghoulies,
     Doctor Splatter has returned from another long hiatus, only this time it's been probably the most productive couple of months I have had in a long while, and I couldn't feel happier and grateful for it. I finally managed to crawl out of the cowshit-scented, conservative toilet bowl that is the Central San Joaquin Valley. I ended up back in my old hometown with my folks in the fall of 2007, after a very bitter break-up and alcohol-infused feud with my ex-girlfriend. More on that later, considering there are a couple of old, dear buds I recently got back in touch with via Facebook, and they're probably reading this and wondering what the hell happened. For right now, though, this about my present, and my glorious future with my lovely partner in crime, Jennica.

     Originally, I came up here to Sacramento in May for two reasons: to spend my birthday with Jenn, who was taking me to see Iron Man 2 (which, by the way, opened on my birthday and totally rocked!), and to look for a summer job to save up to relocate to Fullerton, CA, in Orange County. Jenn was accepted to Cal State Fullerton, and she was all set to go there, thinking there wasn't a snowball chance in hell she'd be accepted to USC, which was her preference. Given the current state of the economy, I was expecting the job hunt to be just as exasperating and spirit-crushing as it had been for me the last two years and that I'd be right back in Coalinga, back to square one again. However, it seems the gods are shining down on both of us. Three days after I showed up I snagged an interview at the Wal-Mart where Jenn's mother works. I was hired on the spot, and I'm now working as overnight maintenance for the summer. Mind you, working for the country's largest retailer is not a career goal I have, nor is it a cultural environment I (under any other circumstances) want to associate myself with. I know I sound elitist, but I could care less. However, I'm not going to bore you today with a long-winded soap-box speech on the douchebaggery of the house Uncle Sam Walton built. It is a means to an end, and I'm willing to put up with the armies of the morally-bankrupt, barely-literate, morbidly-obese, contraceptive-impaired living dead, and the equally socially short-sighted kiss-asses I work with, in order to get what I want. Thought I'd get that out of the way.

     Then, something happened on Jenn's end that makes our dream of being a big-city, horror-obsessed, co-habitator couple even better and even more worthwhile: she was accepted to the University of Southern California! In case you don't know, Jennica is majoring in psychology, and was recommended by her counselor to apply to USC. Again, she thought it was a longshot, and that's because Jenn has the same self-esteem issue I've struggled with: short-changing yourself no matter how many people think you are incredible. Jennica is a brilliant woman and deserves to be recognized for that, and be allowed into an institution that will help her reach the potential she has, but I think because of the social status she was raised in she felt that was unattainable. I know, because I'm still trying to overcome that myself, and I sensed Jenn was more so content with attending Cal State Fullerton. She was more overjoyed with the notion of just getting out of Sacramento and not being around her family everyday. So naturally, when she got the acceptence letter from USC, Jenn was completely blind-sided.  I wish I could've seen the look on her face when she got the envelope and opened it up, but I was at work. I called her up after I received a text from her, and I could just tell from the sound of her voice what she was feeling: shock, awe, excitement, terror, sense of accomplishment, etc. I knew she was destined for this and deserved every bit of it, so I couldn't wait to tell her how much I love her and how proud I am of her.

     So, yeah... That is what our summer has turned out to be: both of us preparing for moving to Los Angeles, while getting a taste of living together at the same time. After a two-and-a-half year relationship that's been entirely long-distance, just having the same zip code would've been a welcomed change. Sharing the same space with Jenn right now is a wonderful bonus, and has done nothing but rock. In addition, I get to take Jenn out to dinner on occasion, got my BlackBerry service back, practically got a whole new summer wardrobe, and throughout the rest of the summer, I'll also be brushing up on some computer programs, making more contacts and looking for career opportunities in LA, while Jenn has been successful at finding apartments for us. We're currently looking at a couple of studios and 1-bedrooms around the $850- $900 range.

     It hasn't all been work, work, work. We still manage to get some movie-watching in. I'll have my thoughts on all of what we've seen later. Plus, even with saving up for relocation, I've also managed to continue my hobby of superhero geekdom. This summer really has been all about Marvel comics for me. I got a few B-Day presents for myself: three Frank Miller-era Daredevil comics, plus old paperback collecting the first five issues of The Avengers. As quaint as those old Avengers issues are, it's great to be able to read them and to gain that sense of history, especially with the movie coming in 2012. I have never read of the books from Miller's run on Daredevil in the early 80's, save a reprint that came with my Marvel Legends Movie Daredevil figure. So far, they've just been bad-ass!

     Of course, with the release of Iron Man 2 also come the action figures. I did get a few of the 3 3/4 inch movie figures, thinking the Marvel Legends-style movie figures I've been collecting for close to a decade were over and done with, and that I couldn't have the new toys alongside the old ones. So, I ended up getting smaller versions of the Iron Man Mark I, Mark III, and Iron Monger figures I already have in addition to Iron Man Mark V, VI, and War Machine from the new movie. Come to find out afterwards that there is a 6" series for Iron Man 2, they're only available at Wal-Mart! At first came, "Fuck," but soon afterwards, I came to the solution to sell the smaller figures on eBay. Very quickly, folks ate those up, and I was able to get some dough back. At the moment I have a 6" Iron Man Mark VI to go along with my figures from the first film. Hopefully I can get War Machine and the Mark V armor in the stores, because there seems to be less of those two, and they are WAY overpriced online. Supposedly, there's going to be Mark IV (with interchangable heads), Nick Fury, and Black Widow coming next, but Hasbro BETTER have a Whiplash figure down the line! I'm getting annoyed with the fact that there are way fewer villian action figures made from all the movie lines. No Kingpin or Bullseye from Daredevil, no Lady Deathstrike from X2, no Mephisto from Ghost Rider, or an Abomination figure to go along with the Target exclusive Hulk I have.

     That's the jist of what my summer has been so far. I feel really lucky and grateful to not only be working towards something big again, but to also have my love and best friend by my side. Ever since I've been here, my self-confidence has shot through the roof. Yes, I have to attribute that to what I've done, but I also have to thank Jennica for her help and support, too. Despite some stress, nervousness, and a little constipation, we've been having a lot of fun and are extremely excited about our future together. It is simply incredible that after two-and-a-half years we are not only still very much in love, but continue to bring the best out of each other. I am blessed.

~ Doc