Mirror, mirror.

It’s a new year now. Get out and do stuff that you wouldn’t normally do.

It’s about kidding yourself. And being an idiot.

Every year we all make a bunch of lame resolutions. I’m gonna eat better. I’m gonna get in shape. I’m gonna spend less money all that good stuff….

….and it happens…for like 2 weeks. Then you blow it off. It’s a joke. We shouldn’t need a holiday or a specific passage of time in order to make an excuse for us to better ourselves.

You wouldn’t be making these ‘resoultions’ in the middle of the year would you? Maybe you should. maybe you should resolve this year to better yourself everytime you have the opportunity, not just at midnight when you have a funny hat on and a drink in your hand. Better yourself for the actual benefit of winding up a better person, not because it’s fashionable or you need something to talk to people about the first two weeks of the year. If that’s the case, resolve to become a better conversationalist.

I resolve not to resolve anything. To leave it all wide open and see where it goes. I will tackle stuff on the way and there by gain small victories of self along the way as well. These little battles are the stuff that shapes us as people and makes life more interesting…

…are you sure you want to limit yourself to just one at the beginning of the year?

The origin of ‘buKit’.

I’ve had a lot of nicknames. I guess you could say a man (or woman) is defined by his name. Who am I you ask? Why, I’m Kent, doesn’t that say it all? My mom always said she tried to give me a fairly original name. It always bugged the hell out of her that all the guys would call me nicknames. She just wouldn’t understand, it’s simply a guy thing.

My Grandpa always called me kennny-kent when I was little. Now he just calls me ‘that no good grandson of mine.’

My parents called me ‘Tiger’. Maybe they had some foresight into what I would be like in the sack, I don’t know, but it was definitely prophetic. Ahem.

Once I reached jr. high the play on names began. I’ve heard them all. The most popular was ‘Fuckenthall’. Submit yours via e-mail.

Once I moved to Virginia and started hanging with Lapo, (yet another person with lots of nicknames) I really started getting ’em. It’s kinda like getting crabs.

One time when I was working at a drugstore, the manager there went to introduce me to someone, and as I was new, he didn’t know my last name. He looked down at the highlighter on the counter, emblazoned with the word STABILO, and stated, “This is our new stock clerk, Kent Strabilio.” From then on I was Strabilio. Go figure.

Sometime later, maybe months or years, I don’t remember, Lapo introduced me to one of his old high school buddies:

“Mike this is my friend Kent.”
“What’s his name? Clint?” (Note, Mike was intoxicated at the time)
“No, KENT.”
“Well I’m gonna call him Clint.”

It got even worse as time went on. Depending on how drunk everybody was, they’d start calling me anything that had a ‘K’ sound at the beginning. Karey. Kareem. Whatever.

Once I was older, like 18 or 19, my grandpa took to calling me ‘Facky’. I guess it’s cool. That’s what he used to call my dad. Maybe he’s just so old he’s getting us confused.

Once I started playing hockey more name games came about. Enter the age of ‘Hackemall’ and ‘Whackemall’. Real innovative.

Finally we come to the origin of the name I have now. After hockey practice one day, I was wearing a knit winter hat, sans puffy ball, all the way up on my head. Someone remarked that I resembled a man wearing a bucket. Enter Buckethead. My poor mom was beside herself.

Buckethead was to hard to yell out on the ice so I believe it was Lapo who first shortened it to just Bucket. Then when I got my first aol account, Buckethead was taken, surprisingly, and I changed the spelling to Bukithed. In it’s final incarnation it is now just buKit with the capital K just to be mysterious. The buKit is also acceptable in the third person.

I am introduced by all my friends as buKit and lots of my friends now don’t even know my real name. They just think it is my real name I guess. They must be pretty dumb.

So, what’s in a name? Apparently nothing. Almost everybody I know has a nickname. Some have different names depending on which clique they’re hanging out with. Mine’s just buKit. One word, and I think it’s fairly original I think. I haven’t met another buKit yet. Guess when I do I’ll have to change my nickname or move away. Hey, I can think of alot of less appealing one word nicknames….

Who is the buKit?

Well, scientists have been trying to solve that for some time now, In fact it was just a topic the other day on Arthur C. Clarke’s Mysterious world. We can trace his origins back to the ‘left coast’, that being California. Born there, he roamed throughout the state with his nomadic family living in a number of different places due to his father’s military involvement. He (the buKit) is believed to have once inhabited Westminister (the city of his birth), Livermore, Fairfield, and Monterey. After Monterey his story takes an abrupt left (or right, depending on which way you’re holding the map) wherein he was relocated to Springfield, Virgina, a far cry from his native California clime. Again the victim of the military’s somewhat haphazard promotion system, the buKit did not adapt well at first to his new environment.

Prone to keeping to himself, the buKit did not relate well with other members of the species except for a select few. These years (grammar school) went by particularly fast for the buKit and soon he was cast into the sea of pre-pubescence that is junior high. The site, Lake Braddock Secondary , some of you may know well. A huge metropolis of teeming teenager pop life, the buKit did not fit in very well and found himself retreating into his world of art and writing. Here we see the buKit develop some of his strongest close friendships that would end up lasting the rest of his life.

Alas, content was not to last long, and after 8th grade, he was uprooted again and sent back to his homeland, sunny California. This time it was Los Alamitos where the bukit discovered both surfing and skateboarding, the latter he would take to his heart like fake breasts on a porn star. Although his time here in Los Al was short lived, the buKit learned much there in only two years before he was transported back to the east with his family.

Now the buKit was almost a man. This time living in lovely and scenic Fairfax, Virginia, the buKit graduated from Fairfax High in 1989. Through out high school, he had maintained a 3.5 average and studied, among other things, art, photography, and his ambition, architecture. The bubble of post graduatory glee was soon popped though, when the buKit failed to gain acceptance to any of the schools to which he had applied. Quickly becoming disenfranchised with the higher education system, he decided to go straight to work as a draftsman, full time at a local drafting firm.

Here we see the onset of what could be called the ‘Salad Days’. The buKit had taken up residence with a friend at the Lapensee Youth Hostel and was making the long green at his minimally challenging job. The beer and good times were flowing freely, but on the horizon a dark specter loomed.

Finally, under pressure, the buKit decided he must go to school and get his shit together. he enrolled at NOVA and quit the lush drafting job for one of meager importance at the local ice rink. In all this time, the buKit had been introduced to a new pastime, Ice Hockey. Ahhh, the opportunity to exercise, curse, and beat people up all in one package appealed to the wild buKit from the start. Plus you got to drink beer afterward. Turns out, the buKit would continue to play hockey for a long time, making many friends, as well as many dollars along the way.

Soon the buKit caved in and after too much partying, could not finish school. Plus, he had become burned out on architecture, and was not sure he wanted to have anything to do with it any more. Coming out of this confusion, as well as a break up with a long time psycho girlfriend, the buKit sought refuge in the night.

He was now working as a barback/bartender at a well known sports bar in Fairfax. He worked all night, made $120, partied ’till morning and slept all day. The living was excellent. It would be some time before he finally decided he could no longer keep up the rockstar lifestyle or he would be dead.

Deciding on some ‘natural medicine’ the buKit worked first as a landscaper and then later at a local nursery and garden center. This saw a brief return to school for horticulture classes, but nothing came of them.

With winter on it’s way, the buKit set out to find new employment. He found himself back in the bar, working like an ox, and drinking like a fish. In addition, he and his roomate were doing piecemeal graphic arts and screen printing work out of their house.

It was during this time that the buKit came across the be-all-end-all. A female member of the species that took control of his soul and made him think of things he’d never imagined. He got a new job working at a local Hockey store and was promoted quickly through the ranks to Asst. Mgr. (Ohhhhh). The female inspired him and made him feel indestructible. It was at this time that the buKit started to put pen to paper more often.

Then she left.

This sent the buKit spiraling into a pit of confusion and self doubt. They would attempt later to rekindle things, but it was not the same. The buKit was crushed, all his air was knocked out.

Unsure what to do, the buKit tried to forget by working all the time, and drinking when he wasn’t working. He started a silk screening and sign graphics business with a partner and was on his way. This company proved to be a constant source of stress due to the fact that his partner was an idiot and the company eventually went belly up, but not before a bunch of legal problems came about, most of which are still in deliberation today. They started a year ago.

When the buKit got out of his failing business, he floundered for a while and then found himself working at the Internet Society in Reston, on the recommendation of a roommate. He is currently employed there where he is in charge of individual membership. The job is excellent, as it is flexible and allows time for the buKit to teach private and group power skating lessons to little kids at the rink, which he thoroughly enjoys.

The buKit is content for the time being, thinking occasionally that he might like to move somewhere else to perhaps start over. You see, the buKit has yet been able to escape the haunting memory of what went awry with that one girl. It consumes him and he cannot figure out why. So he writes. He writes about everything. Her, himself, others, things he sees. The buKit sees this page as what could be a tremendous vehicle to get his writing out. Although he has yet to decide if he wants to be a ‘writer’, he takes solace in the fact that others might read his thoughts and understand, or relate to what he has written. All feedback, good and bad, is welcome.

The buKit’s parents recently moved to San Francisco and he has a younger sister who lives in Centreville. His is 24 years of age, she is 22. In his free time the buKit can be observed (other than writing), playing Ice Hockey, Aggressive In-Line Skating, reading just about anything, maintaining web pages for both the Lapensee Youth Hostel and Modern Yesterday, and playing the drums which he has been doing for about 10 years. If your band needs a drummer, check out what buKit likes for influences, musically, and e-mail him if you want to jam.

“Pull over ’til the ‘ludes wear off…”

Is it me or can any idiot with a pulse get a driver’s license today. Many of us, including myself, are hurtling into the future on the bullet train that is the information highway, yet it takes me 20 minutes to get down the street to the fucking 7-eleven. What is wrong with this picture? Hey construction man, why do you have those two perfectly good lanes of road blocked right in the middle of rush hour? Oh I’m sorry, I didn’t realize you were busy picking the lint from your navel. I’ll come back later. The roads are becoming more and more clogged and congested (kind of like the bathtub drain at the youth hostel). I think in order to solve the problem, we just need to weed out a few of the undesirables…..

If you are old enough to remember killing your own food before you ate it, I don’t think you ought to be driving. Now, I have nothing against my elders, I just don’t want you in front of me on the roads anymore. I recognize that you need transportation to and from the bingo game, beauty parlor, what have you, but that’s what your realitives are for. Get THEM to drive you. They owe it to you, seeing as how you raised them and all, and the more you let them now this while they’re driving, in addition to how lonely you are because they never visit, the FASTER they will get you to your destination so you’ll get out and leave them the fuck alone. If I wanted to move as fast as you drive, I’d fucking walk everwhere I go. While this would be healthy, I’d be poor and starve to death, because I could never get to work, or get to the store before it closes. I have no idea how you get to Denny’s so early in the morning for the breakfast specials, you must leave your house at like 1 in the morning or something.

If I am right behind you, it is not your civic duty to slow me down. You are not helping mankind, so get out of the way. It’s at times like this you understand those LA Freeway shootings…

Habla Ingles? If you can’t READ our drivers tests, how the fuck do you guys PASS them? Why is the DMV letting you slide? Are you a friend of the family? Are you fucking the clerk? Oh sure, now I’m immigrant bashing. No. I have just as many foriegn friends as I do native ones, but all of my friends speak and read english AS WELL AS their native language. How can you drive an automobile when you have to keep looking in your english to whatever dictionary to see if the store you’re passing at 3 miles an hour sells lottery tickets? Get out of my way!

“Oh the scenery here is beautiful isn’t it dear?” Not for the fifteen cars behind you on that one lane country road. If you want to look at the woods, pull over and look at them, drive through them, run naked in them for all I care, but don’t gaze at them, or the monuments, or the world’s largest ball of string, while letting your car idle in the middle of the fucking road! Just take a couple a pictures, get them developed and then share them eith all your friends back at the trailer park. If you weren’t so fucking cheap, you’d take a real vacation instead of enjoying the ‘scenery’ on the way home from the bowling alley.

I can’t go 15 feet without getting a ticket for not having my car inspected but somehow you made it into the freak of the week clause, whereby if you live in your car, you pass. How did I end up behind you? If it weren’t for the jet black exhaust and oil dripping out of your tailpipe, I’d say you had to have a HORSE pulling that thing. I didn’t think you could run a car on 3 silly spares, but hey, you proved me wrong, thanks. I could put a fucking SAIL on my car and move faster than that dilapidated hot wheel you’re driving. And what a great SMELL your car puts out, what is that, Sulfur? Can I buy that air freshener at Pep Boys? You’d probably get around better if you melted that thing down and had it made into a bike.

Ohhh, it sure is getting cloudy. Whoa, couple o’ drops on the windsheild, better cut my speed in half. What the fuck? If you don’t like driving in wet conditions, don’t. There’s plenty of us who are perfectly capable. Why the hell do you think tire companies spend so much of your money working on the perfect ‘Aquatred’? You’re not going to slide right off the road, you’re in a 7,000 pound automobile! If planes can fly in rain, you sure as fuck can drive in it. Same with snow. Hey and you remember when you go into a skid, you turn the wheel the OPPOSITE way, just like in driver ed.

What’s that, you failed drivers ed? The book was in english and you couldn’t read it?

This is the problem with America today. Poor driving. And the fact that you can’t really park and fuck in a car anywhere anymore without getting busted. Heck, I can’t even find anyone to fuck, but I digress.

Sigh. I feel a little better now. If you’re one of these people, TOO BAD. Someone has to tell you you’re a dolt or else you can’t get help and get better. Remember if you can’t drive the cars on those high speed video games, you simply cannot drive in real life. Real life is much harder than Sega.

To make a long story long, you know who you are. People honk at you. Yell at you. Flip you the bird. Expose their genitals at you. Shoot at your tires. These are all telltale signs that it might be time for you to hang it up and get a metro card. They’re pretty cheap and they have public transportation pretty much everywhere in the world so you should be familiar with it. Just don’t sit next to me ’cause you stink.

When hippocrates attack.

You know, John and I have spent some major fucking time on this thing. It’s pretty easy now but at first it was a bitch. You have to learn the program, then you gotta come up with some sort of plan of attack, maybe a running theme to carry through out the page, which I’m not even sure we’ve developed yet. You’ve gotta conceive and produce the graphics, type in the text, scan photos and all this other shit. Don’t get me wrong, it was and is alot of fun, but many beers went down, along with a lot of frustration.

When we first conceived this grand idea of a ‘Youth Hostel Website’, we thought it was a killer idea even for us. All our friends who were always over here and hanging out could find out what was going on when they weren’t around and keep up to date on all the latest happenings. Now, it wouldn’t be like us not to poke fun at people, we even poked fun at ourselves, you have to be able to laugh at yourself otherwise you’re fucked. I set out to report the events that occurred on a day to day basis with the utmost integrity and the only thing I interjected was my own twisted brand of humor. Everything that you read on this page IS TRUE, IT REALLY HAPPENED THAT WAY.

In doing my reporting I apparently pissed some people off, embarrassed some people, I guess. Well so what. If you’re embarrassed by something you’ve done that was made public here maybe you need to look at the deeper issue of why. Why are you embarrassed. If you’re so embarrassed, why don’t you cut it out? God knows there’s some embarrassing shit about me here. I made a concerted effort not to exclude myself from the carnage. Do you think I’m proud of the fact that I went into a violent rage and was so drunk I shredded a can of Pringles all over the living room? No. Some might say I have a problem. So be it. the fact of the matter is, I take responsibility for my actions. If I piss somebody off, I admit it, If I break something, I admit it, If I’m an asshole, well you get the picture.

Apparently some people want to go out and party and wear that floral lampshade on their head and dance naked on the coffetable and then forget about it at work the next day. No way. The great oriental philosopher, Hong Kong Phooey said once, “You are what you do, people will remember you for your actions. So if you can’t take the heat get the fuck out of the kitchen.” I may have misquoted him a little but I think you get where he was coming from.

For some reason, some of you think our house is like a theme park where you can come be a fucking idiot and then go home and no one will know. Well I’m here to tell you we’re fucking idiots all the time, that’s what our house is about. We are all insane here. Maybe it should be the Lapensee Sanitarium. We love nothing more that to have our fellow patients-er-um, I mean friends come over and play with us. The only problem is when you wake up the next morning and want us to be quiet, well don’t. If you don’t want to play with us, don’t. If your mom, or your boyfriend, or girlfriend, or your fucking grocery store clerk looks at you funny afterwards, don’t blame me, I just wrote down what I saw you do. YOU DID IT. By the way, I still can’t believe what you did with that beer bottle…

A tearjerker. With swearing.

Alright, so here it is, our webpage. What does this mean? No one will ever probably visit it. If you’re reading this, you probably got here by accident and then your system locked up and won’t let you leave. (A software touch we programmed in, it’s working!)

So now you’re stuck here forever, dabbling in the the lives of what you think are a bunch of poor lost souls, and this is what we are, but we are lost together and that’s what makes us survive.

Everyone’s got em.

Your own circle of friends. The circle of wagons you can retreat to when the Indians of the world attack. The people that live here at this house have a bond that goes even deeper than being ‘friends’ we’ve spent ‘times’ with each other. we’ve all been through the shit and the shine and I know that just when I’m about to lose my grip one of these sorry motherfuckers will throw me a rope and bring me back in. I can say I would do the same for them.

When you live, eat, shit and shower with people, you get to know them pretty well. You get to see all their finer points. Although it’s hard to remember those finer points when they borrow your room one night and leave a big stain on the sheets. Most of the time though, you peacefully coexist, you start to expect certain people around, heck you even start to want them around when they’re not. They make you forget about all that other shit, your problems. They bring you from a mass of confusion back down to just being human.

We all have an inner need for human contact, an ache. Even the darkest loner will tell you this. At times the reason we feel so alone in a group of people is because they are at a distance, we have not let them inside who we are, and we have not gone inside and embraced who they are. There is static that exists.

I KNOW the guys I live with. I can read them, better than anyone else, maybe even their family. They know me too. Sometimes more than I’d like.

This ‘opening up’, this ‘knowing’ is not a weakness. It’s the people that hide themselves that cause themselves and those around them more greif. There are times when I want to know no one, but they are few and far between. I retreat into my world and come back to the surface, every one does. Call it downtime or whatever, it’s you – time.

The basic fact is you/we need other people, other emotions other ideas, if only as sounding boards or reminders of how much we have it together. In as much as I know how ‘nowhere’ I’m going and how messed up in the head I am, I am better off having known all the people here. I do not regret a time spent with any of them and I hope they feel the same about me, because it’s through interaction with them, and through them that my life is enriched and I am who I am today. Go out and LIVE with the people you know and love, don’t just interface. Take something you know from them and make it your own. Accept them, their imperfections and revel in your time together, for it is short and you will miss it when it’s gone. You need to have a place to call home, and souls to share it with.

The Youth Hostel is my home. These guys are my friends. These are my memories.

I would not trade any of it for the world.