Friday, October 31, 2003

Wow, I didn't think it was possible...

...there are people with more twisted imaginations than me. Check out this link, found amongst the other Halloween festivities at A Small Victory.

Thursday, October 30, 2003


Submitted for your approval & just in time for Halloween:

The classified section from the Elm Street Gazette (thanks to T for the original inspiration & to Kevin & Tim for helping me run with it)

Services Offered: Holes in walls to 4th dimension patched. Call for estimates. Ask for Rod.

For Sale: The house of your dreams! Spacious country house on busy interstate. Large yard with plenty of room for children & pets. Adjacent to charming pet semetary & Indian burial ground. Seller will put up fence. Listed by Castle Rock 21st Century. Ask for Steve.

For Sale: "L'il Einstein" chemistry & biology set. Most pieces intact. $25 or trade for new Tesla Coil. Ask for Vic or Iggy.

For Sale: Small Tiki doll with spear. Owner desperate to sell.

Wanted: Winter caretaker for luxury hotel in Colorado. Family members welcome. Drug & alcohol pre-screening required.

Free To Good Home: 3 year old Saint Bernard. Good with kids. Has had all shots.

For Sale: "Leather" face mask. Great condition. Must see to appreciate. Perfect for Halloween. Scare your friends. Scare complete strangers who show up at your creepy house in mid-Texas. $25 OBO. Large Chainsaw. Used but still runs great. Cuts through anything. $45 OBO

House For Sale: Large 2-story, 4 Bedroom house built on Indian burial ground. Backyard includes swimming pool & large man-eating tree. House includes a free television, clown, tiny high-voiced psychic woman. Easy access to schools, shopping, and 4th dimension. Ask for Craig T. Nelson.

For Sale or Trade: Used William Shatner Halloween mask. Stained. $4.50. Used machete. Needs sharpening. $6. Will sell both for $9. Ask for Mike.

For Rent: Quaint cabin location at Crystal Lake. All utilities included. Handyman on duty, will take care of chopping down trees and teenagers. Slow mover, but get's the job done. Ask for Jason.

For Sale: Slightly used fingerblade glove, in good condition. Good for hedge trimming, grout cleaning & hacking teenagers to death in their dreams. $15 OBO. Call ELM-2853, ask for Fred.

For Sale: Good Guy doll named Chucky that's possessed by the spirit of a Satanic psycho killer. Chucky is alive, cannot be killed, and has tried to kill my whole family. Asking $30, OBO. Shipping & handling is included. Act now, and I'll throw in a "Talky Tina" doll. Caution, you better be nice to her.

Room For Rent: Private house. Large kitchen, living area & large hole in basement w/ garden hose & bucket for lowering items (i.e. food, lotion, etc.). Must like small dogs & insects. Owner works at home as making "suits." Ask for Jamie Gumb.

For Sale: Ventriloquist doll named "Corky." Realistically moveable facial features. Able to hold items in hand such as flowers, knives, etc. Extremely lifelike.
Also available, ventriloquist doll named "Willy." Sits on your knee, tells jokes, laughs, and can get out of a trunk by itself. Comes with a damaged doll named "Wally."

For Sale: Fixer upper in need of TLC. 3 story, 8 bedroom + den, detached garage. Fireplace. Laboratory in basement. 1313 Mockingbird Lane.

For Sale: "Rubik's Cube" style box. Origin unknown. Ask for "Pinhead"

For Sale: 1958 Plymouth Fury. Excellent condition. Low miles. Owner has maintenance records.

Tuesday, October 28, 2003


While the fire has been bad for people, it unfortunately has been good for my hit meter. Forty yesterday & sixteen today.

I wish the referrals were for something other than searches about the fire.

Where are all the weirdoes looking for shock collars?

So, I look to the north as I leave the house this morning & what do I see looming over the hills across the street? A huge column of smoke reaching into the sky. My heart jumped & then I realized that the smoke was coming from the mountain about 10 miles away from me. It’s so weird. It just seems like it’s not going to end.

At least not anytime soon.


Evacuations getting closer…

Most all of the mountain communities (at least those that haven’t burned to the ground) have mandatory evacuation orders. & now the evacs are starting to go into the lower mountain areas: Angelus Oaks, Barton Flats, Running Springs & Forest Falls. Forest Falls is getting too close.

Here’s another SB county geography lesson. Forest Falls is on the other side of a small mountain from Oak Glen, which is separated from Upper Yucaipa by a bunch of dead grass. & that part of Upper Yucaipa is only about 5 miles away from home. If the call goes out for voluntary evacs of Oak Glen, I’m leaving work & getting the Boy from school. I am not going to try to fight my way up there after the order goes out. I’ve already been in contact with the ex so that we know what we’ll be doing if the fire makes its way over the hills.

I’m feeling a little bit of panic starting to build up. I’m trying not to listen to Irene’s talk of this being a terrorist attempt to spread our firefighters out thin & then attack. I’m trying not to succumb to the idea that this is some serial arsonist. I’m trying to stay calm & rational. Normally in these situations I am calm. I take care of what needs to be taken care of &, after it’s all over, let the shakes & nerves go. This time, though, I don’t know. I just want to have the Boy & T with me, so that I know he’s safe & that I would have some support from her.

I think I might have some packing to do when I get home tonight.


Maybe sooner than that. The fire is starting to hit some areas of Mentone, a little town north of Yucaipa, just over the Crafton Hills. I keep getting conflicting reports as to whether or not there are any evacuations in the northeast part of town. It’s making me anxious. So, I will leave here shortly, pick up the Boy from school & pack a few things. Then, we wait.

I hate waiting.

Lousy fire.


OK, I picked up the Boy & we went to see if anything was going on up around the Mentone side of the hill. We found out that the road has been closed going toward Highway 38. The Boy's school is closed tomorrow due to the nasty air quality.

I keep waiting to hear an evacuation warning for the area. My nerves are on edge, expecting to see a wall of fire come over the hill at any moment. I'm probably getting my Fruit of the Looms in a knot over nothing, but...I dunno. I'm used to earthquakes - they're quick. You don't sit & wait for it to come. This is making me crazy.

Monday, October 27, 2003

Blue Shadows & Perpetual Sunset

We’re almost a week into one of the worst firestorms in recent history. For those of you outside of California or living under a rock, the two fires that I talked about in the previous post (the Grand Prix & the Old Fire) have merged into one big, forty mile long fire. I went to one of the lookouts on Saturday night (along with most of Yucaipa, apparently) to see how bad the fire was. I don’t think I have ever seen anything so frightening & at the same time as intriguing as what I saw that night. It looked like a giant, flaming snake, making it’s way through the mountains. Even from across the valley, I could see the flames reaching into the sky. The thought kept coming to me that I was watching people’s homes going up in flames.

There are still evacuations happening. The evac areas keep spreading wider & wider. I’m not sure which way the fire out in Hemet is going, but I’m starting to get a wee bit nervous. I stopped by the Boy’s school to drop off his backpack & told him to call me first, as I am much closer than the ex to his school, if anything happened. He proceeded to tall me that he figures by Wednesday there’ll be a fire in our area. Apparently the Boy’s been reading from his mom’s book of paranoia.

It’s odd looking outside. The sun is hidden behind a hazy cloud of smoke & the filtered light is giving the shadows an eerie blue tint. The ash is falling like snow & my eyes start burning as soon as I step outside. Even inside the warehouse it was getting smokey. We had to turn off the A/C & resort to fans in order to clear up the air. At the Boy’s school, their last recess was held under a rainy day schedule due to all the ash in the air.

This just keeps getting worse.

Saturday, October 25, 2003

San Bernardino Geography lesson


Hell on Earth

My little corner of the world is a bit smokey right now. Since Tuesday, we've had a fire going in the west end of the valley, starting in Fontana & moving through Lytle Creek to Rancho Cucamonga & now making it's way to Alta Loma. My uncle just moved into the area about a month ago & had to be evacuated. Then, this morning, another fire started near Highway 18 & moving on down into the valley. The area from Devore to the San Manuel reservation in Highland has been evacuated. About 1,000 houses are in the way & already about 50 have been lost. Highland is about 10 miles north of me as the crow flies. I'm looking out at the Crafton Hills across the street, wondering if I'm going to wake up to an inferno. With the Santa Ana winds (referred to as "Devil Winds" - how appropriate) kicking up now, it's not entirely out of the realm of possibility.

I know that a lot of you loyal readers have no idea where all of these locations are that I've mentioned (& may not care, but, it's my blog, so thpppppt!). Let me try to give you a rough idea of the layout. The San Bernardino valley is probably about 20 or so miles long & maybe 15-20 miles wide. It's surrounded from the west end & along the north end of the valley by the San Gabriel Mountains & by hills to the south. The Fontana fire (the "Grand Prix Fire" for those of you following the news) strated on the far west end of the valley. It spread west, going through Lytle Creek Canyon, which is forest land. Rancho Cucamonga sits on the opposite side of the canyon. Alta Loma is west of Cucamonga. A lot of what has burned has just been scrub brush, although I do believe about 6 homes were lost.

The second fire (the "Old Fire") stretches from Devore, which is north of Lytle Creek, along the foothills to Highland, with North San Bernardino right in the middle. That's about a 10-15 mile stretch. That fire is moving south, toward the city limits of San Bernardino. Devore isn't heavily populated, but North San Benardino is near the local state college & is much more densely populated.

The winds have died down enough so the air tankers can get going again. That will be a great help. Already, the evacuation center at San Bernardino International Airport (formerly Norton AFB, my old stomping grounds) is full, so authorities have set up a new site at the Orange Show Fairgrounds. One of the shelters that had been opened earlier in the week has been reopened for evacuees of the Grand Prix fire.

The power keeps flickering, due to there being transmission lines going through the fire zones, so I'll wrap this up for now.

Might have to go pick up some marshmallows.

Monday, October 20, 2003


Before I forget, I want to say "Thank You" to the checker at Staters in Yucaipa & the gentleman in line behind me, even though they may never see this.

Acts of kindness like the ones you displayed reaffirm my belief that the world isn't such a bad place after all.

Thank you both.

I was looking through my stats & noticed a referral from someone looking up "shock collar" in a search engine.

Maybe my idea's catching on.

That's a scary thought.

Thursday, October 16, 2003

Brain Misfires

My mind is frightening sometimes.

Last Sunday, while sitting in the main service, I suddenly had the urge to try to name all of the characters on the show “Roseanne.” I don't know why. I got almost everybody but could not remember the name of the oldest daughter. I could remember the actresses who played her, I could remember everyone else’s names, but I could not for the life of me remember that character’s name. Finally, about 45 minutes later, I remembered her name while sitting in traffic. I’m sure the people sitting next to me thought I was having a seizure or something as I did a happy dance after having my “Eureka!” moment.

Then today, I was staring at my monitor at work & then looked down at my hand. This reminded me of an episode of “Little House on the Prairie”, in which a black man is falsely accused of locking someone in the ice cellar or throwing them down a well or pinching Mrs. Olsen’s bustle or something. Anyway, they have a trial & are ready to run him out of town when Pa Ingalls points out the man is missing his ring finger (hehe…”points out”…”missing…finger”. Get it? "Finger." "Point." Dontcha...? Ah, whatever.). You see, the whole case was based on one piece of evidence: a handprint left on a wall at the scene of the crime. Why nobody tried holding his hand up to the print on the wall in the first place, I do not know.

Yes, readers, I know, I need a new hobby.

Or professional help.

One of the two.

Wednesday, October 15, 2003


I stopped by Sav-On on the way home to grab a few things. I realized as I was walking to the check-out that I had in my hands the following:

3 cans of ravioli (3 for $3 - score!)
1 4-Pack of toilet paper
1 box of chewable Pepto Bismol

Yes, it's going to be partytime as Casa de Jay tonight.

Tuesday, October 14, 2003

Another One Bites The Dust

Ah, time to look back on another year. To reflect upon the events of the past year & contemplate the days to come.

*contemplative pause*

Hmm...not a bad run. A few bumps here & there, but our hero seems to have made it through to 32 none the worse for the experience. In fact, it kept getting better as it went along.

Here's to the new year - onward & upward.

Time for a B-day shower.

Monday, October 13, 2003

Alright already!

Here's the next little part of my adventure. You can all stop sending me threats. I promise to get the rest of the story out faster. Enjoy, kiddies!


I finally made it to the end of the terminal & there she was. She was beautiful, more than I had imagined. I couldn’t get to her fast enough. I had a smile so big across my face that I almost dislocated my jaw. I ran to her, dropped my bag & held her. For the first time, I felt her in my arms. &, yes, she was a perfect fit. We kissed. Perfect there too. We just looked at each other. I imagine that we both were trying to take in all that was happening.

We walked out of the airport, hand in hand (yet another perfect fit) & I just kept looking at her, marveling at how much more beautiful she was in person. I just couldn’t get over the fact that she was finally by my side. I felt like I had finally come home.

We went to have lunch at a little Italian place near the airport. It’s been years since I’ve been asked “Smoking or non-smoking?” I’m just * so * spoiled out here in health conscious California...peh. We were both a little nervous, but I think T was more so than I. There were a few awkward pauses here & there. Soon, though, the nervousness passed. She was a bit afraid that she wasn’t what I was expecting & that I would be disappointed. I was a little worried that she might be disappointed with what she saw too. I mean, I’m an all around great guy & all, but some people just don’t appreciate the greatness that is Jay. * ahem * Anyway, nothing could be further from the truth. I fell more in love with her the moment I first laid eyes on her.

She showed me the sights around town. I was amazed at how different things were back there. Everything, even in the “Big City”, is very laid back. Traffic’s not nearly as bad as it is out here. I learned that turn signals are an extra option on most cars in Arkansas.

Other than the suicidal on-ramps in which you have to cross in front of oncoming traffic to get on the freeway (2 lanes – very strange), it seems like a nice place. I look forward to many more trips back there, especially the trip that brings T & I together for good.

* sigh * It's gonna be a looong next few months...

Thursday, October 09, 2003

Jay’s Excellent Adventure

OK, I think I’ve got the notes from the first part of my trip together enough to commit to the ‘net. Here, for your consideration, is a rundown of my little trip.

The Adventure Begins – 10/2/03

Well, loyal readers, here I am at Ontario International Airport, ready to take off into the wild blue yonder. Checking in was much less complicated than I thought it would be (except for having to remove my boots – lousy shoe bomber). The terminal is starting to fill in & Milt McGiffin is repeatedly being paged to Gate 404. When I got to the waiting area at my gate it was fairly empty. I went to use the facilities & when I came back there had been a population explosion that rivaled some third world nations. Without the flies.

I’m sitting next to an older woman in a purple track suit who’s chewing spearmint gum. Couple that with the smell of my pre-meeting-T breath mint in my front pocket & it’s quite an assault on the olfactory senses. A minty fresh assault, but an assault none the less.

Southwest Flight #162 is now boarding. My purple tracksuited Double Mint Twin is apparently on the flight, so I will soon be left with just my own pepperminty freshness to keep me company.

* * *

Ugh! If I ever get to the point in life where matching top & bottom sets or black socks & Bermuda shorts become the fashion statement that I want to make – shoot me. Please. Really.

* * *

Sign over the America West gate:

…Flight departs 7:00am…Volunteers needed…

I guess that’s one way to cut costs.

* * *

OK, I’m officially on the plane, all snug in my seat. Let’s get this crate off the ground, people! I’ve got places to get to!

* * *

Engines firing up…taxing down the runway.

Up, up & awaaaaaaay!

* * *

I forgot just how beautiful the world is from up here. Ontario was a bit foggy, but once we got above it all, it was breathtaking, seeing the tip tops of the mountains peeking through a sea of poofy white cotton.

* * *

553 mph! Flying rocks!

* * *

Flying through turbulence is not helpful when trying to write (you’d have to see my note pad to understand).

* * *

“Our in-flight movies today are ‘Castaway’ & ‘Airport ’77.’ Enjoy!”

I wish.

Instead, I’m being subjected to “Legally Blonde.” The only thing that would make this movie better would be for the plane to hit a mountain.

Oh, the humanity!

* * *

The movie’s not so bad with The Pretenders & Iggy Pop playing on the CD player.

OK, it still is.

* * *


I think I’m actually getting stupider.

Where’s that mountain?

* * *

Brain…melting * drool *

* * *

Ah, the food cart!

Breakfast – 1 banana, 1 Dr Pepper.

The breakfast of champions, my friends.

* * *

Perhaps drinking a Dr Pepper in a giant flying cigar tube at 30,000 feet wasn’t one of my finer ideas.

More to the point, perhaps slamming said Dr Pepper was not such a hot idea.

* * *

I’m looking out of the window & I have no idea where I am. There’s just dirt & hills. & I don’t care!

Ahh, vacation!

* * *

I’ve returned from the rear facility without being sucked out of the plane, although there was a disturbingly noticeable change in air pressure when I flushed.

Oh, & if anyone tries to tell you that they joined the “Mile High Club” in the bathroom of a 737 – they’re full of it. There’s barely enough room to turn around, let alone get your groove on.

* * *

I kid you not, there is a line from the restroom clear back to my aisle. Must’ve been something in the Corn Flakes they served for breakfast.

* * *

ETA 36 minutes.

We’re flying over Texas.

“The stars at night,
are big & bright!
Deep inna heart of Texas!”

* * *

I was just sat on.

* * *

Houston has the largest frickin’ airport in the world. I am finally onboard my last flight on the way to T. I have just completed a 12 mile death march from terminal A to terminal ZZZ. I thought I’d never get here. I figured they’d find me one day, wandering about the pilots lounge, living off of stale peanuts & leftover martini’s.

I am seated in the very last row of an incredibly small jet. I thought maybe I was going to find my seat out on the tail of the plane. Oh well, let’s just get going people! Time’s a’wastin’!

* * *

Here we gooooooo…

* * *

Houston has a lot of trees. Never knew that. Now I do.

* * *

It’s hard to believe – I’m less than an hour away from meeting the love of my life. One little hour from being able to finally hold her; from being able to see her right in fromnt of me.

* * *

20 minutes! Weeeeeeee haaaaaaaaaw!

* * *

OK, people – out of the way! Move! Move! Move!

* * *

Could they make this terminal any longer?

* * *

Oh wow. Wowowowowow…

There she is…

* * *

More later...

Wednesday, October 08, 2003


I am going through some serious T withdrawals. I miss her so much. I keep looking at the picture of us together, thinking about her & how much I want her by my side; her hand in mine; to see her smile when I tell her how beautiful she is. I know I am hers & she is mine, but it still doesn’t help this detached feeling that I have right now. I feel like I’m far from home. When I got back to California, to Yucaipa, I didn’t feel like I’d come home. I opened my apartment door & felt like I was opening a motel room door, that I was just staying there temporarily. I talked to her last night & it felt like I was away on a trip & talking to T back home. I can’t believe it – for the first time in my life, I don’t want to be in California. I want to be back with her. If I could, I’d move out to be with her in a heartbeat.

I feel restless. I want to hop into the truck & drive out to be with her. I’m not a co-dependant, needy person. But T is so special. I want to be near her. I want to start our lives together soon.

I just want to hold her again. I want to come home again.

Crumbs, I miss her.

* * *


I guess I’m wearing my feelings on my shoulder a bit. Everyone keeps asking what’s wrong. I need to pull out of this funk. I’m engaged to a beautiful woman who loves me as I love her – the time apart is only temporary. We’ll have the rest of our lives together.

Buck up, l’il camper! She’ll be here soon, faster than you know it.

Great…now I’m talking to myself.

* * *

Blah, blah, blah

I couldn't think of a snazzy entry title this morning (I've really gotta stop posting early in the morning).

I'm still culling all of my notes from my excellent adventure into a future post, but in between wrapping the Boy's wrist (broke it on Thursday) & fighting the urge to drive back out to T, I haven't had a chance to do much updating. &, as a shower is now calling me, I must run.

Just not enough hours in the day sometimes.

Monday, October 06, 2003

I'm Baaa-aaaack!

Yes, kiddies, I am back. I have many stories to tell but only a limited amount of consciousness left right now (not much sleep to be had with 2 screaming demon spawn in the plane).

I will give you this much: I may have to change the name of this site from "My Little Corner Of The Web" to "Our Little Corner Of The Web." Yup, loyal readers - T & I are engaged :) It was made official today.

More to come soon!

I love you, T :)

Friday, October 03, 2003

Greetings From Arkansas!

Well, loyal readers, I'm here! Finally here. I've finally met T face to face - & she's more wonderful than I could've ever imagined. From the moment I first saw her at the airport I haven't been able to take my eyes off of her. She's just...well...she's perfect. & I love her more than I thought I could love anyone.

I'll fill you in on all of the gory details of my whirlwind 3 city US tour later on.

Gotta run...I'll post more later.

Wednesday, October 01, 2003


Good freakin’ grief, could this day drag on any longer? It’s just now hitting 2p out here. Three hours left of work & then go home, do laundry, get my stuff together then it’s Ny-Quil time, baby. Have to be up by 4a to get to the airport by 5:15a or so, as I have to be at the terminal to check in an hour & a half before my flight leaves (thank you, Al-Qeada). Then, 3 hours of anxious waiting as I take to the skies. A one-hour layover while waiting for my next flight, then one more hour & finally be able to see T. * sigh *

Crumbs…it’s only been 3 minutes since I last looked at the clock. ARRRRGH!!!

* *

* sigh * It’s only 3:16p now, an hour & fifteen minutes since I last wrote. This day is going soooo slooooow.

* *

ARRRRGH!!! It’s only been 3 minutes since I last wrote! Why am I being tortured like this? Why? Why?!?

* *

Ker-umbs! This is now officially the longest day in the history of the world.

* *

OK, sorry about all the whining. I have absolutely zero patience for waiting for surprises or gifts or anything like that. This is why I don’t like Christmas & birthday parties & all that kind of stuff. I mean, I do like the holidays, I just hate the antici…pation. I can remember one year at Christmas, I bugged my mom for days, asking if she’d gotten me a particular toy I wanted. I finally broke her & she said “Do you want me to tell you the rest of the things I got you?”

Little did she know, I’d already found all of the other gifts.