Dear anyone in my inbox,
I rarely do this mass mail thing because it's lame and even lamer yet when all I have to offer you is 10% off your order of $2000 or more. Hey that's a savings of at least $200. It takes a full trek around the monopoly board to get that much money.  But we can settle the tab afterwards. Right now we have other business to discuss. Find small consolation in my lumping best friends, longtime penpals, and complete strangers in the same category. That's actually only consolation to the complete strangers but I have to suck up to someone before I plummet in the polls. I'm just trying to furnish a mitigating explanation for my email truancy. There is no presumption on my part that you are jonesing for my email so much that you've signed up for treatment at the local methadone clinic(You just want the methadone, you're not fooling anybody!) I remember when I was an undergrad and the school health plan included $200 of free drugs. I used to make pit stops at the infirmary so I could stock up on generic ibuprofen, lemon crème pie antacid, and cough lozenges that tasted like medicine (absolutely insensitive to the needs of students who just wanted sucking candies) This liberal pharmacy policy fostered my dependence on lemon crème pie antacid, which was actually incredibly tasty if you could get over the texture, somewhere between chalk and sneaker rubber (Fortunately I had the lemon crème pie liquid antacid to wash it down with). It's been a good 4 years since my last lemon crème pie antacid binge. But the craving, it never goes away. I just received a sample of Pepcid AC from and I didn't open it, as much as I wanted to. 'Course that's mainly because 'sugar' wasn't listed as an ingredient. They're more interested in so-called  'active ingredients' like magnesium hydroxide and calcium carbonate. What about calcium carbonate cake? Who wants a pill that has to be mashed up in apple sauce? That's just too high a price to pay to keep the doctor away!
And now supermarkets sell unsweetened apple sauce. What is up with that?  How is the placebo effect supposed to kick in if you tell me I'm in the placebo group! Clearly these are the same people behind decaffeinated coffee and non-alcoholic beer. Speaking of alcohol, when I was 15 and visiting Aruba on Spring Break, I was so excited that I was allowed to buy booze that I…bought booze. It started out all innocent, an orange banana rum shake to cool me down on a blistering hot afternoon. It cooled me down all right, because by the time I woke up it was nighttime. I was again thrust into adulthood at the duty free shop where I purchased vodka to take home. The only "I.D." I had was the swimmer's card I earned in day camp. I didn't even really earn it. All of my "expert" strokes look like a panicked drowning kid treading water with arm floats. But drowning people got drowning cards. I had a swimmers card. Had to mean something. The proprietor of the store didn't care about my swimmer's card. He happily took my money and handed me back my drowning card, one bottle of hard liquor. I returned to the states with my tales of Arubian nights and a container of hangover. But how to serve the hangover. My brave friend Danielle suggested we serve it straight up in milkshake glasses, like any Czar would. Whassat? No sugar in the ingredients list? No magnesium hydroxide? Well, no one was missing the magnesium hydroxide but we desperately needed to perform the complex chemical reaction that turns a liquor into a liqueur. Everyone knows milkshakes are served in milkshake glasses (except the Czar. Clueless. He didn't see the revolution coming either!)
"Frothy chocolate vodka surprise." Yes it was as disgusting as it sounds, which is why I suggested to Danielle that she sample it first.  I have amazing powers of persuasion.
"Cmon, all the cool kids are doing it."
"Shutup Debbie."
"Danielle, if you drink this, you're in the club!"
"What club would that be"
"The frothy chocolate vodka surprise drinkers club!"
We tasted our concoction together on the count of three. Only she got to three before I did. Not my fault she counted so quickly.  I distinctly heard "thee" not "three", she was in such a rush, and clearly, subliminally trying to pressure me. I wont apologize for taking the time to roll my R's. That was one of the best Passovers of my life. Instead of wine, we left frothy chocolate vodka surprise for the prophet Elijah. And not just one cup.  We left him the whole blender full.
This letter is probably going down as uncomfortably as frothy chocolate vodka surprise. So I'll get right down to the nitty gritty. The okee dokee. The Italian stallion. I'm trying to distract you with silly rhymes so I can do that trick where you pull a coin out of the other person's ear. That's how they do it y'know. Distraction. I don't think the ear is a very safe place for money storage. Maybe you should get a wallet. Did you hear what I said?
What I said was that I'm going through a computer transition and for me, that's a precarious operation. I'm very close with my machines. They even call me by name. You're thinking "but you told it your name." Well I told you my name too. So stop calling me "Velasquez the Destroyer" That's only the handle I use when I sign up for free trial periods online.  Until I get a handle on the hardware end of things, it's difficult for me to email as often as I'd like. I estimate that hardware homeostasis will be achieved by the end of February.  Why are there two r's in February? Everyone says "Feb-you-ary". Oh, now you want to roll your R's!  To note, I'll be back before you can correctly pronounce "February."

Velasquez the Destroyer
Janruary the 17th, 2001


The Hamilton Depression Rating Scale

"First introduced by Max Hamilton in 1960, it has since become the most widely used and accepted outcome measure for evaluating depression severity."

When have you experienced the most extreme depression?
a)when a close friend or relative passed away
b)when I found out I was cut out of the will
c)when I realized I gave up a kidney for nothing
d)when Alf was taken off the air

Do skyscrapers make you think of
b)all the construction workers who must have fallen off during its construction. Or maybe they were pushed off, didja ever think of that?
c)why do they call them skyscrapers if the sky is still a zillion miles away? No one's fooling me! I have eyes!
d)man they better have fixed the elevator! Walking up actual stairs is nothing like the stairclimber at my gym!

If you were to get fired from your job would you
a)cry and cry and cry
b)sue and sue and sue. How dare they fire me for taking a two week vacation, even if it wasn't stipulated in my contract
c)find another job. Do you need any topless barmaids who can carry a tray of food in one hand and swing around poles with the other?
d)open fire on the office. But I'd first put a memo about it on the bulletin board because I'm thorough like that, not that anyone appreciated it!

The first time you were ever dumped in a relationship did you
a)gain 50 lbs
b)lose 50 lbs
c)desperately beg your former partner to take you back
d)desperately beg your former partner to take you back, but just so you could dump their ass.

Have you ever deliberately tried to hurt yourself?
a)No. Alot of people tattoo perforation lines on their wrists. It's quite popular these days.
b)Injecting myself with the ebola virus seemed like such a small price to pay for getting out of my particle physics final
c)heck no. no way. My body is a temple. Although when's the last time you saw a temple with an outie belly button?
d)I only took the entire bottle of sleeping pills because just once I'd like to finish a dream dammit!

On a scale of 1 to 10, how do you rate yourself
a)I'm no 5. I don't care if 5 is about average. It doesn't sound good.
b)Like Bo Derek jogging on the beach, breasts heaving, cornrows flowing, I'm a 9.9 (well, no one is perfect, except Christ our Lord and Savior)
c)On Mondays Wednesdays and Sundays I'm an 8.15.  On Tuesdays Thursdays and Fridays I'm a 6.323. On Saturdays I'm an even 7.0.  Let me explain my system to you. Can I write on this sheet?
d) Definitely a 1. But something about '#1' sounds too good. Why did you leave out zero? Stop coddling us!

Are you the type of person to examine alternatives?
a)what happened to b, c, and d? Oh wait, I see them.
b)I'm a happily married man! The fact that I told my coworker Bob he looked nice in his new checkered suit doesn't mean a blasted thing. And the pat I gave him was 4/5 on the back, 1/5 on the butt. It was hard to aim properly with that long tweed jacket hanging over everything!
c)Absolutely. I still can't decide between the hickory or pine coffin for myself. Which one do you like better?
d)I not only examine alternatives. I examine alternatives to examining alternatives. Of course the only one I can think of is "not examining alternatives" but you just give me a minute, I'll come up with another!

How do you feel after finishing this test?
a)Where's the proctor? No one told me to come with a pencil!
b) I have nothing to live for!!! Except a perfect mark on this test. My life is in your hands grader!
c)I'm very down. And it's not just because I was mugged twice in the same week, got into a fist fight with my sister, and overcooked my special soufflé during a national bake off competition and once in a lifetime opportunity. I really think it's the test.
d)You can't count this. I still haven't recovered fully from that flesh eating thing. You've got to give me a break here.

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