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Mark Shields
Super Genius
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« January 2001 | Home | March 2001 »


2001.02.28 19.16

mardi gras in new orleans 2001 with two broken ankles


2001.02.27 13.46

Realized that I never received a car note to pay this month. Funny how you think you're doing pretty good and then suddenly remember a forgotten expense. Bleah. Lost four bucks at the Harrah's casino. I was up a dollar and then figured I'd go for broke. I did.

Pain starting to suck. Making vacation difficult. Almost can't wait to get back. Almost. Note the qualifier. I am also tired of the constant observations about my busted ass feet. Examples include:

''Damn! Both feet?''
-- Drunk fat guy with four weeks stubble growth

''How are you walking on those without crutches?''
-- Another drunk fat guy who apparently had his entire ankle reconstructed in a recent surgery. He was also wearing an immobilizer boot. Just one. Wimp!

''Man, you must be pretty f---'ed up to be walking on those messed up feet''
-- Drunk fat guy standing up against building and loitering.

''I remember I had to have a cast put on once cause of a sprain. Damn, those boots you got are cool.''
-- Old drunken fat gentleman in the elevator wearing a black and white striped prison uniform costume

''Oh, you poor thing!''
Cute girls who offered me sympathy when I asked if they'd let a cripple guy pass through. Not everybody is a fat drunk guy here. ;-)

air max / freudian slip

2001.02.26 17.46

Ace bandages wrapped tightly around my inflamed ligament and musculature has the pleasant effect of reducing pain and allowing me to keep on going. I'm happy. Went to the New Orleans RiverWalk. It is located right off the Mississippi River. In terms of being a real River walk when compared to the San Antonio RiverWalk, let's face it, San Antonio does not really have much of a river compared to the Mississippi which could kick its ass blindfolded during a drought in the desert in August near the equator. Bought two kewl fake Texas license plates, both of which say OUTATIME. They vaccuform a clear plastic overlay, paint the raised letters with alchohol based paint, and then put it over. Bought two sock puppets (one to keep, one to share). Saw Air Max at the IMAX theater. Michael Jordon = Prodigy. My hotel room is by the elevators so I am enjoying the trite pre-elevator-arrival conversation from strangers outside my door. It's all about the little things. I ordered room service last night (hot wings and quesadillas). I left the tray outside the door. Some dorks actually lifted the metal plate covers to see what was under them at some point during the night. Perhaps I should leave a plate full of poop next time. [evil grin]

Earlier... at 1:11 AM New Orleans time...

Just got back from Bourbon Street. Had one Heinekin in a can. Probably attributed to my not being able to relate to anyone's interest in my aforementioned pool ball beads. For the record, four girls inquired about them. Did manage to give away some really long beads that I bought from Wal-Mart last week. I think my plan tomorrow is going to be to get rid of all of them. I have so many beads now, I could hold my own parade. Twice. Wondering if I could hold my own parade. I'm sure the city wouldn't like closing 20 blocks just so one guy could drive through and throw beads. Maybe if I drove really fast?

Made the mistake of walking through one of those covered wooden construction site barricades. You know, the kind where you walk down a wooden hallway, usually because something is being constructed behind it? Everything on Bourbon Street is sticky. wet and gross. This wooden deck was no exception. For the first time since I've been wearing the magic shoes, however, I slipped. I didn't fall, but I twisted my left ankle around a bit. Not good. I am feeling it now. I suspect I may need to chill out tomorrow while I recover from this detour to recovery. Hoping I wake up in the morning and this is all a bad dream. Oh, and that it's 1978 again. I have a few changes I need to make, like buying Microsoft stock with my college money. I also think I might look into becoming a ''player'' in fourth grade and break a few hearts.

While walking through the crowded corridors of Bourbon Street, I got my butt pinched and grabbed a couple of times by passing members of the opposite sex. Wondering if someone really wanted to that, if it was an accident, or if clever pick-pockets were checking me for a wallet. I am not carrying one, so I hope they enjoyed themselves.

Wondering about the X-Files episode I saw earlier this evening. Is Mulder dead? Was that a re-run? Does David Duchovney like showing up for only 45 seconds in an episode? When did I stop wondering if the X-Files were based on true stories? Who is your daddy, and what does he do? All your base are belong to us?


2001.02.25 20.24

Friday 2.23.2001: Departure
Returned home from work. Remembered 23 things I should have done yesterday to prepare for the trip on the way home. Broke the speed of sound several times while getting ready. FYI, driving on a sprained ankle isn't too bad. I have learned to hobble barefoot in the past week. In the event of fire, I am sure I could break three, maybe four miles per hour. Drove five hours straight into New Orleans. Stopped once in Baton Rouge (I think) for coffee. Caramel white chocolate capaccino, to be exact. It was really good. Until I spilled it on my hand. Ouch. Pain was temporary. No scars or burns. Why is it that the cup they put next to a hot beverage dispenser is always a centimeter too tall. Bastard Circle-K corporate executives.

Saturday 2.24.2001: Day 1
Parades were supposed to begin at noon. Got choice spot. I had no idea the number of parades that were going to come through. They are boring, however. Yes, catching all sorts of interesting beads is an interesting thing. For the first four hours. Walking on braces got me minor sympathy. I'm actually tired of the sympathy. I have started to tell people that my ankles were messed up from an XFL football injury. Most people are like, "No way! You seem kind of small for football!" I'm all, "Man, everybody is small in the XFL, like duh!" I hope no XFL players read this blog. I have been toying with the idea of alternate stories about the injury. It's a toss-up between Mardi Gras Bead Accident and I Had My Feet Up On The Wall That Dale Earnhardt Smashed Into. Yeah, I know the second one is in bad taste, but then again, so is the XFL. I spent some time at Harrod's casino with my mom and she had a great time. Oh, did I forget to mention that I brought my mom? I figured, the only thing worse than going to Mardi Gras with two severely sprained ankles was to to go Mardi Gras with two severely sprained ankles and my mom. [just kidding mom, in case you're reading this]. I figure I'm not going to pick up any chicks sporting the big ass ugly braces on my feet, so what the hell.

Sunday 2.25.2001: Day 2
Slept in. Nice. Decided to only wear one necklace to the parades today. It's composed of a lot of little pool table balls (8-ball, etc). It's the only necklace anyone ever seems to like. It cost five bucks. Money well spent. Haven't traded it with anyone... yet. I'm open minded. Hit the hotel for lunch and the parade route once again. It travels right in front of where I'm staying. Not bad. Bourbon Street is two blocks down Canal Street. Casino is two blocks up. Wendy's and McDonald's are across the street. How can I lose? Taking lots of photos which I'll put up on my return. Had bad ass landscapers clean up my yard before I left so I'll throw in some bonus footage of the new digs as well. My dad is living in the house while I'm out of town. He's feeding my dog and cleaning my guns. Good ol' dad. Plan to return to Bourbon street shortly, camera in tow. I'd like to pick a theme. People getting sick? People arguing? People giving me the peace sign? I should have made up a sign that says Super Genius and take pictures of interesting people (a.k.a. good looking girls) holding it. We shall see. Watching X-Files right now. Good stuff. Makes me want to get abducted.


2001.02.19 23.38

Check out this Corvette that a guy in Cali customized to look like the 1989 Batmobile. It's halfway funny, and halfway kick ass. I am tempted, of course, but I'd like to have a full-on replica instead of a half-assed one. Although, according to my wise friend Adam, a Corvette is a real car.

Went to Orthopedist. Noticed he has treated lots of famous celebrity athletes. Personalized messages from Joe Namath and Deion Sanders cover the walls. The Doc himself is a cool guy and will go out in the hall and record everything he told you onto a tape (to keep everything straight, I assume). The two page results of my MRI were handed to me before he came in so I read them. Five times. They were pretty detailed and grisley. You could tell someone had looked inside my foot to describe some of the problems going on in my ankles. He came in. He read the report. He looked up and said, "I guess what this MRI analysis is saying is that you've sprained the hell out of your ankles!" Ha! True. Basically I am going to take it easy for six weeks. I'm getting some physical therapy to relearn how to walk, although I am pretty sure that after 31 years I have not forgotten. The place they are recommending is called The Matrix. For real! How can I resist?


2001.02.18 1.10

To the right is my first attempt at Flash (without reading the directions). Upon reading the directions I am sure that my abilities will improve. The Flash Ninja team at my office helped out with the current redesign that is up right now. I can make edits to that and add to it, but creating something from scratch is a big pain. Having an idea in your head about what you want is probably a good idea. You don't go to the grocery store to browse, so I shouldn't be trying to program Flash stuff without knowing what I wanna buy.

Time for another painkiller and it is off to bed. :-)

After making a quick purchase at the RoboCop body armor store, Mark Shields regains his ability to fight crime. Modifications to the Batman uniform will soon follow.

crappy valentine's day

2001.02.14 23.04

I've almost recovered from helping that satellite land on the asteroid. My mood is upbeat. I am finding myself interested in figuring out what is going to happen tomorrow when that guy stabs the pig on Survivor. I mean, come on, some girl (Kimmie?) is seen sobbing and weeping. All I'm thinking is PORK CHOPS! I see pork jerky. Bacon in the morning. Oh, and the horrible memory of a little piggy getting stabbed viciously by some dude that you and your friends can vote off the show. I will have to tape it, however. My MRI is scheduled at 7:45 PM tomorrow evening. I will have Secret Service agents and Mexican banditos watching my house while I'm out. It won't upset my schedule. Oh, I haven't mentioned that yet. Basically at 10 PM the Daily Show with John Stewart is my first hit. From 10:30 PM to 11:30 PM is David Letterman. Sticking to CBS, the next show at 11:30 PM is RealTV with Ahmad Rashad. I love that damn show. It makes hurting my feet seem OK. After that is over and I'm still awake, I'll try to watch Craig Killbourn (however you spell that). If I have to go to work the next day, I hang it up after RealTV's last teeth gritting, blood curdling gross out caught on video scene. Nothing like a little tension release when you attempt to fall asleep. Ahem.

I was thinking about the Houston Police Department and how we could improve their image. First off, I'd change the color of their uniforms. Sure, we'd have to keep the blue, but just the pockets. The rest of the uniform would be bright orange. I figure, good enough for prisoners, good enough for The Man. Lots of people wear blue. But almost everyone shuns the bright orange. If you suddenly found yourself in a terrible situation and needed to locate a police officer (and assuming you weren't at a rave), you could pick out a cop in minutes. I'm sure.


2001.02.13 14.33

There was a label on the back of my Batman costume that said, ''Warning, wearing this costume does not mean you are really Batman!'' I am at home now. I've been trapped at my parent's house since Sunday. It hasn't been pretty. Morphine isn't pretty, either. If you have the means, avoid it! Sleeping on my parent's leather couch for two days has also been just as painful as my actual injuries. I will write more about this when I'm better able to. I have an orthopedist appointment tomorrow. Gonna hit them up for a super wheelchair. Wondering what effect this will have on my vacation to Mardi Gras later this month. I may be the only crippled non-drinking reveler on Bourbon Street. Life is cruel.

Super-Genius Mark Shields returns from his descent to the asteroid Eros which allowed the NEAR-Shoemaker satellite to make a soft-landing. Other than fracturing both ankles and causing severe pain and discomfort, the mission was a success. Upon his return to Earth, Mr. Shields was quoted as saying, ''I want my mommy!!!'' See related press release for more details.

trinity infinity

2001.02.03 12.35

Got another cold. I'm calling the Guinness Book people. My Sony computer's keyboard has suddenly developed a bad spacebar. You cannot believe how annoying this is. Slamming it with my fist fixes things, somehow. First time for everything, right? However, eventually my harsh treatment is forgotten after a day or so and it goes back to ignoring my spacebar keystrokes. I've threatened to send it to military school if it doesn't start behaving.

My sister had her baby on Thursday. I still haven't seen them as my cold is not the first thing you'd like to introduce to a tiny little baby. They named her KateLien Victoria. I am not sure if the capitalization is correct. I'll report my findings after I hear the final word. She was thisclose to being named Chloey. If she'd been a boy, he would have been named Ethan Danger. Yes. Danger would have been his middle name. I suggested it. That would have been very cool. I have tried to sell the Danger middle name to lots of expecting couples, but so far no takers. I am sure there is someone out there named Danger.

Dweezel Zappa is a loser. I just want everyone to know that. I have a cover he did of Britney Spears' Hit Me Baby One More Time and it has to be the biggest joke ever. He tries to rock out and bring some metal into the mix. Big mistake. It's comical, really. Sometimes siblings should not try to follow in their parent's footsteps. Honestly, how many Dweezel Zappa songs can you name? He probably has some other calling somewhere that he is completely ignoring. As far as we know, he might be the president in 2012. Or not. Add supergenius! (with exclaimation point) to your Napster hotlist and you'll see the cover there. Download it, but prepare yourself for some serious teeth gritting. There is a bonus comedy scene at the end. You'll listen to it and go, ''Hmmmm.''

Went to Numbers on Friday, as usual. Took these pictures. One set is of this girl who had a very intricate braid in her hair. She was nice enough to let me take a few photos. The rest are of some friends and mildly interesting observations. They played the latest Marilyn Manson video and people freaking cleared out of the floor pretty quickly. I guess that particular song was too aggressive for most people. About 40% of the people on the floor stayed there and danced along with it. It would have been more of a moshing type song, but nobody was configured for moshing after the aforementioned 60% left (too many gaps). I didn't dance at all this evening. I have grown out my beard to a scruffy degree, so I believe any chance of appearing attractive to the fairer sex was blown upon approach. Being sick doesn't make me wanna keep mowing the facial hair.

My living situation will change soon. I offered the house to my sister and brother-in-law now that they have a bigger family so I could move closer to work. Since there are no Atlas Missile Silo homes near downtown Houston, I am going to settle with some kind of big apartment or house. I am leaning towards the Rice Lofts that are downtown on Texas street. They are just down the block from Enron Field, Jones Hall, and all sorts of new hangouts. It would be really nice to have lived in the city just once. Everyone has said I should be buying a house, but that would tie me down. My sis agreed to take care of Chew Chew (my basset hound) as long as I get them another dog they want. No problem! A friend for Chew Chew? Where do I sign up? He would most likely not be too hip about living in a downtown apartment with no park in close proximity. I'll work that out after I get over the need to live there. I tried to talk to him about it, but he was only interesting in jumping up on me and grunting. Ugh.

Need to write some email to my friends now. If you aren't already watching Survivor, check out to catch up on all of the latest. This show adds to the strange list of my favorite shows that start with the letter S. Seinfeld. Star Trek. Survivor. Simpsons. South Park. It looks like Sex and the City is also a contender (if I can only get HBO). Also working on the redesign. I'll link to it once I have it going. Going to try to have it done today so I can goof off (like normal) for the rest of the weekend. Late.

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