Hey, you! Yeah, I know you! The person who keeps looking up “Patrick Kay Winthrop” or “Patrick Kay WordPress” in Google’s search field! Awww, hey, buddy! Here’s my third article for The Johnsonian! It deals with mystic space reptiles that I would have loved to explore in more detail had I not been operating under a word limit.
My desktop computer, as it currently is, displays a “System Recovery Options” screen. My precious hog of precious finite resources had a bad driver error in the hard drive (hopefully) that sent itself into a slow downward spiral to the point that it won’t even turn on anymore. Thankfully, I bought a second drive in time to recover my data. Oh, it’s not there to recover family keepsakes, it’s just recovering Crystal Castles songs and videos of The Matrix Online. The priorities.
I’m actually really peeved at the whole process. My machine was bought lightly-used from an eBay auctioneer who builds and immediately sells machines at discounts. He made sure to include all the manuals, but didn’t offer receipts or Windows install discs. On top of that, and on top of a graphics card I may have wrongfully assumed was the problem, it’s difficult for me to even parse what exactly the problem is. This isn’t “Oh no, my mouse stopped working!” It’s blue screens. It’s BIOS. It’s the deep, nasty, near-illicit levels of computer programming that was covered up by an influx of the casual market. I haven’t seen some of these screens on my monitor since WarGames.
Then, my backup drive didn’t come with its necessary SATA cable. Way to piss on my life, Western Digital.
Who cares, though? The internet now uses the Cloud, which means I’ve been able to keep up with my silly mediums. I made remarks recently about how dumb it was that Microsoft charges sixty dollars a year to watch YouTube on the Xbox 360. PlayStation has my back, though. That giant corporate monolith at least has the decency to not charge me for a free service, so I was able to watch Giant Bomb quick looks and 30 Rock episodes with some degree of regularity. 30 Rock was in a weird funk in its last couple of seasons. It still existed as a funny, better-than-average show, but its sincerity seemed increasingly lost. In the four or five episodes I’ve seen of 2011’s season, the lack of sincerity is actually used as a resource for humor. Rather than playing the Scrubs failed line-walk where it attempts humor and sweetness in separate-but-equal measure, it just dives headfirst into cocaine madness. That was a compliment.
I often, perhaps wrongly, pride myself on being an individual. This doesn’t mean that I react to situations solely on the basis of being “different,” but I do tend to follow my heart. Sometimes you stop eating at a restaurant because it’s what you imagine a decent human being would do, not because you were inspired to become one with the crowd in a political boycott. I either shy away from small talk or let it be all I appear capable of, depending on the conversation. People ask me what I want for a career, and I tell them, “To get paid for being myself.” That’s an honest answer. I presume that would come through in writing, but whatever works. My parents treated me all special-snowflake enough for it to leave a permanent impression. So it alarms me when a random person, pointing to no one in particular, can so clearly define the way I operate in just a few short seconds.
The best submissions come in late because all the good writers are either huge procrastinators or are such perfectionists that they won’t get their imagined magnum opus’ done until the last minute. I sure don’t know if I’m good, but I know the last two speak some awkward truths.