January 17, 2018 scottcjones 2Comments

January was off to a good start. Was moving in a fairly healthy direction. Felt optimistic that this year was going to be MY YEAR, FOOLS.

Then I fell on the steps in the TTC station at Broadview. Last Wednesday night, around 8:30 or so. Not down the steps, but up the steps. Defying laws of physics. Here’s what happened: I was climbing up the steps, out of the station. I was trying to get by this little annoying woman who, in my opinion, wasn’t moving fast enough. As I tried to pass her: spdoom krrshhh boom. Down goes Frazier.

The little annoying woman was the first to stop and ask if I was OK. “I did that about a week ago!” she said, empathizing with my newfound state, facedown on the steps. “Everyone falls in Toronto,” she added, leaning towards me. “Are you OK?”

This woman was little, yes. But she wasn’t annoying. She was kind. I thanked her for her kindness. I assured her that I was fine. Felt guilty for thinking she was little and annoying. I scrambled to my feet and exited the station as quickly as I could. I hopped on the waiting street car, as if I’d just pulled off a robbery or something. Maybe five or 10 people must have seen the fall back there. I needed to get away from those people fast as I possibly could. Sat in the idle street car silently saying the words “Go, go, go!” to the driver. Finally, the street car began to move.

Went to bed that night knowing I’d be sore the next morning. I grossly underestimated the damage. Been a week since the fall now. I’ve been to the ER. Been to the walk-in clinic. Still having trouble putting weight on the leg. My left leg looks like a regular leg. Right leg looks like a misshapen paper bag that’s holding two, maybe three casaba melons. That’s what it looks like. How does it feel? Feels like my right leg has been replaced with a 40-pound bag of dry dog food. And it feels like it’s on fire about 60-percent of the time.

A 40-pound bag of kibble, engulfed in flames. That’s what I have now.

Wonder, quite honestly, if it’s broken. Could be broken. Wouldn’t surprise me if it is. Who knows? Elevating the dog food bag today. And I’m down to my last Percocets. Which, in all honesty, are not as strong as I’d like them to be. Worse, they only last for about four hours. Not enough. More soon.

January 10, 2018 scottcjones 4Comments

Update: Apologies for not posting at all lately. Been busy tending to various things, etc. etc. Most of those things have been constructive things.

Honestly? I resent the site sometimes, the way a dutiful parent might resent a child who doesn’t quite turn out the way she expected him to turn out. I always thought he was going to be a doctor! Now he’s just a druggie who sits in a hot tub all day, says this imaginary parent. He never goes out! Just sits at home. Yes, in that hot tub! Doing his crazy drugs! And if he does go out, it’s only to buy food for his parrot. Yes, he has a parrot! I don’t know what the hell that’s all about….

  • Note: I do not have a hot tub or a parrot or a drug problem.

I always assumed that a literary agent or a publisher would magically find the site and reach out to me one of these days; I figured it was only a matter of time. You’re a terrific writer, Scott Jones, they would say. Why don’t you put all of these musings into a book for us? They’d send me a check the size of floor mat to my house. After that, my imaginary parrot and I (and the floor mat-sized check) would ride off into the sunset together. Roll credits.

But that obviously never happened.

Some of the things I’ve been busy with lately include,

  • completing a draft of the novel I tried to write 20 years ago,
  • finishing a proper full season of my podcast, instead of releasing episodes piecemeal,
  • being anxious about my career (He should have more money and stability than this at his age, shouldn’t he? said the imaginary parent.)

I also had a really bizarre holiday job in 2017, which I’ll tell you about soon.

Long story short: I’m still here. Train is still on the tracks. Season 1 of Heavily Pixelated will be out in the next couple weeks. And I’m coming back to the site. Because I like to write. And because I miss you.

Yes, you.

I really do.

Happy 2018.

Thanks for your patience.

 

Your friend,

Scott

September 2, 2017 scottcjones 2Comments

The next morning I packed up. Gave the old room a final inspection. So long, crummy motel room. Ordered an Uber for the airport on the motel’s wifi. Then I headed outside.

The sun was coming up over the freeway. Hadn’t left yet, but I was already feeling nostalgic for California. So long, California! You beautiful, sun-baked hag, you.

There was a black car parked next to the motel’s front office. Was the Uber here already? As I walked towards it, I noticed that the car looked weirdly similar to Tony The Driver’s car from yesterday. Can’t be Tony, I thought. How can that be Tony? 

The driver waved at me through the windshield. Same upscale eyeglass frames. Same Bluetooth thing hanging from his ear. Fucking Tony.

He opened the door and stepped out. “Your ever-faithful driver, reporting for duty, sir!”

(more…)

August 28, 2017 scottcjones 1Comment

Work was fine. I put in the hours, did what I’d been contracted to do. The job was in an anonymous business park. Big, blank buildings with manicured shrubs out front. The building I was working in was full of people, but I felt alone there. Once the last day was over, I handed in my badge, tried to find someone to say goodbye to. Then I took an Uber back to the hotel-motel. (more…)

July 12, 2017 scottcjones 3Comments

I despise summer on the East Coast. I always have. The Herald Square subway station at 34th Street and Sixth Avenue is the real-world equivalent of the hubs of hell. It’s the epicenter of NYC’s savage summer heat. It’s claustrophobic and dark down there. It reeks of spoiled garbage and urine. You’re a hundred feet below ground, surrounded by trash and darkness, yet the temperature is still as warm as a witch’s oven. Even the track rats seem to openly sweat in the Herald Square station.

(more…)

June 28, 2017 scottcjones 11Comments

[This is a continuation of my account of my first days in Vancouver in May 2009. I think there’s one, maybe two parts left. Oh, and hey! Thanks for reading. I haven’t been posting consistently lately, which you may have noticed. Planning to post more in the coming days. Hope you come back. -Scott.]

As soon as I stepped off the plane in Vancouver, as soon as I set foot in the airport, I left some of the nagging 9/11 gloom behind. My shoulders, it seemed, were relieved of an invisible burden on this arrival. My posture began to automatically self-correct. I felt as if my skeleton was stretching itself out, expanding to its full height. Only minutes into my new life in Canada and already I stood taller, felt stronger.

I was not a visitor here this time. I was, presumably, here to stay. I had a job. And I had immigration paperwork, making it official.

Once I’d finished with immigration, I exited the Vancouver airport and stood on the curb with my two cats, still tucked safely inside their carriers. I filled my chest with Canadian air: inhale, exhale. Despite the nearby line of idling cabs, the air tasted cleaner and earthier to me. I could smell lilies blooming somewhere nearby. Only moments into my new life here and already things seemed less dangerous, less complicated, and more livable.

It was then that my eyes began to water. I didn’t expect this at all. I used the sleeve of my jacket to dry my face.

As I waited in the taxi line, my idle brain questioned why I was in Canada.

But wasn’t New York great? You loved it there!

Yeah, it was great. I loved it so much.

So why did we leave again?

Because it wasn’t safe there. We thought we were going to die there.

Oh. That’s right. Now I remember… 

If we went to pick up milk, we thought we were going to die. If we went to fetch dry cleaning, we thought we were going to die.

That was awful.

Yep. Pretty awful.

An eerily silent taxi (a Prius, of course) sped me and the cats to the new apartment, in a neighbourhood known as Gastown. I sat in the backseat and opened up the local map on my phone. With a series of finger-pinches and swipes, I found New York. I was 2,900 miles away from it now. I found a webcam on the Internet overlooking midtown Manhattan. Thanks to the time difference, it was almost dawn in New York.

The city looked lonely and gargantuan. Despite the pre-dawn hour, it was still twinkling like mad, as usual. New York, it seemed, could still twinkle without me.

(more…)

June 22, 2017 scottcjones 1Comment

I had a pretty serious girlfriend in New York. Her name was Jill. I was nuts about her.

Jill was a part-time teacher in the math department at NYU. She lived in New York but she was from Vancouver—the same city, coincidentally, where I was shooting a TV show every month or two. She’d grown up in Vancouver in the 70’s and 80’s. She’d been a snowboarding prodigy as a kid, which sounded terribly Canadian to me. She remembered her dad driving her down the icy mountain roads after her snowboarding meets. Her father always bought her a tuna sub from Subway on the way home—that was their ritual. As he steered the car and navigated the tricky curves of the mountain roads, guiding them both back to civilization, Jill sat in the passenger seat. She watched her father drive and ate the tuna sub.

Jill accompanied me on one of my TV trips to Vancouver. We stayed in the spare room at her parents’ apartment. It was at some point on that trip—probably over dinner with Jill’s parents at an oyster place in Gastown—that we decided to move to Vancouver together.

I phoned the producers of the Canadian TV show I worked on the next day. I asked if I could work for them full-time. They said yes. The wheels were in motion.

Jill and I returned to New York and began winding down our lives in NYC. We scheduled goodbye dinners with friends. We fantasized about our new life together in Canada. The vulture of gloom? The one that perched on my shoulders and made me flee subway stations in terror? The vulture’s days were numbered now.

(more…)

April 28, 2017 scottcjones 3Comments

Traveled to Brantford, Ontario in March, to the PC Museum. Syd Bolton, the museum’s founder and curator, drove into downtown Toronto to pick me up, along with TV’s Steve Tilley and Youtube’s Erika Szabo. Syd summoned us to his museum for an event called a Game Soiree. I’ve never been to any sort of event with the word “soiree” attached to it. I was concerned that it might be sleazy. It wasn’t.

We were all at Syd’s modest estate from 2 p.m. until 11 p.m. So it was a pretty good chunk of our day.

But come on—it’s Syd, right? He’s the most eccentric Canadian I’ve met. His entire life is built around gaming, and computers, and nerd culture. It’s honestly difficult to know where the work ends and Syd’s private life begins.

Special thanks to Tilley, Szabo, Shane Luis (also of Youtube), and to Syd, for feeding us spaghetti, opening his home, and letting his calvary of tiny, precious, snow-white dogs lick our hands and faces.

Update: I have a subsequent conversation with Syd that I’ll be posting soon. Stay tuned for that.

-Scott J.

 

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