Wednesday, December 31, 2003

2003 - Yes, it's another "year in review" post...get over it

I'm sure those of you who frequent blog sites have read through many a 2003 retrospective, some interesting, some, well...maybe not so interesting. Anyway, good or bad, I'm going to toss my entry into the mix.

The year started out with changes & new frontiers. I was a month into being single & starting to feel like myself again. I'd just gone through two years of beating a dead horse & trying to please someone else who apparently didn't have any intention to make the relationship go beyond where it was. When things finally ended, it was a great relief, believe me.

I also started in a new (my current) position at the Company. I wasn't too thrilled about being moved to the warehouse, mostly because of the fact that I'd have to be working with, or at least in close proximity to, Evil T, my arch nemesis. But, I decided that I'd do my best here & try to get all the knowledge that I could from the job. That took about a month. I've been bored silly ever since.

The next few months were pretty uneventful - that is, until I met T. I had no idea how much my life was going to change when I first contacted her. I never would've guessed that I was talking to the woman that would be my wife a year later - that I had found someone who would bring me so much joy & happiness. I love you, Babe. Thanks for being the high point of my year, for wanting to be the high point of my life :)

There was the trip to see T & her trip out here, both very good things. There was having to let go of my beloved truck & the acquiring of the new Jaymobile. Financial headaches. Many events, both good & not so good, but for the most part, a quiet year.

I've made some new friends & acquaintances (through work, this site & life in general) this year. The play that is my life has a very small stage & a very small cast of characters. I added quite a few new players, though. All of you, including the readers who frequent this little corner of the web, have made this a great year, & I thank you.

So, after that little look back, let's look to the future & see what '04 holds in store for us.

Here's to a happy & blessed New Year!

Tuesday, December 30, 2003

Rah! Growl! Snort! Grumble!

Our hero is not a happy camper today. I've about had it with the Company, or rather, my manager. I want out of that place so bad. The job isn't bad itself. It's just the idiots that I have to work for who couldn't manage their way out of a paper sack. People who can't use their own common sense or brain power (what little they have) to make their own decisions instead of relying on the Almighty Policies & Procedures. Freakin' idiots.

Also, while I'm on my little rantbox - AOL SUCKS! I can hardly get any pages to open in my IE browser. It takes forever to open a page. It sucks, sucks, sucks, SUCKS! If anyone knows how to alleviate this, ping me, please.

ARRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRGH!!!

Friday, December 26, 2003

Sick & tired of being sick & tired

I don't know who gave me the wonderful gift of a stuffed up head & a cough to me, but you could've kept it. I hate being sick. I ended up having to postpone my trip up to my sister's house Christmas Eve until this weekend (if I'm still alive) because I didn't want to "spread the cheer" to the rest of the family. Bleah...I...hate...being...sick.

I hope you & yours have had a relatively germ-free holiday.

Time for a shot of cough syrup & then off to bed for our hero.

Did I mention just how much I hate being sick?

Thursday, December 25, 2003

What Christmas is all about

Charlie Brown: Isn't there anyone who knows what Christmas is all about?

Linus: Sure, Charlie Brown. I can tell you what Christmas is all about.

Lights, please?

And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shown round about them. And they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, "Fear not, for behold, I bring you tidings of great joy which will be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you. Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes lying in a manger". And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host, praising God and saying, "Glory to God in the highest, and on Earth peace, goodwill toward men."

That's what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown.


That's what Christmas is all about, Loyal Readers.

From this little corner of the web to your little corners of the world, Merry Christmas & peace & blessings in the coming year to you & yours.

Tuesday, December 23, 2003

Weird dream

In case you hadn't noticed, I disabled the comments box. I'm looking for a new comment system as my current one is a bit unreliable (it deleted all of my old comments, for starters, & frequently disappears).

Anyway, I had a dream last night that I had the comments up & running & people kept leaving me messages saying "Please update" & "Write something new" & the like.

I blame this dream on the salad, too.
Evil smothered in bleu cheese

I was feeling fine yesterday. Not a problem, felt good, was looking forward to today. Then, I went to dinner with a friend last night. I had a salad, a combo burrito &, to top it all off, a cup of chocolate pudding. After finishing the pudding, my stomach let me know, in no uncertain terms, that it was very unhappy with me. Now my stomach feels likes it's gone a few rounds as Tyson's punching bag & I have to go to work today, not just because I have to work, but because I need to get my paycheck & a package that I'm expecting. In addition to that, today is the 32nd Annual Jay's Christmas Shopping Day.

What do I blame my current gastrointestinal woes on? The salad. I thought maybe it was the pudding, because that's when I started feeling sick. But, how can you blame an innocent little cup of pudding topped with whipped cream? No, I place the blame firmly on the salad. I think the nutritional value of the salad upset my body's balance of grease, fat & cheese.

Salad - Satan's healthfood. Fear it!

Saturday, December 20, 2003

Growing up

A few years ago, the Boy & I were sitting on the couch. He turned to me & said “I know there’s no such thing as the Tooth Fairy.” This came totally out of the blue, but I was interested in finding out how he figured this out. The Tooth Fairy had made all of her teeth for dollars exchanges at the ex’s house, so I knew I hadn’t screwed anything up. I asked him how he’d come to this conclusion. “Well,” he said, “there’s no such thing as fairies, so there couldn’t be a Tooth Fairy.” I was quite amazed with his reasoning. Then he looked at me & asked, “Is that true?” I had promised myself a long time ago that when he started questioning Santa & the Easter Bunny & the Arbor Day Pixie & the like that I’d be honest with him. So, I told him he was correct.

He sat & thought about it for a minute & then said “I know that the parents put out the gifts at Christmas.” He went on to say that he knew they were helping Santa & also theorized that there were actually four Santa’s – one North, South, East & West Santa - because there was no way that one man could fly all the way around the world in one night. I was pretty impressed that a 7 year old had put this much thought into the whole Santa shtick. He then looked up at me with those big blue eyes, looking like he wanted me to say he was right about the four Santa’s & confirm that the world was still a magical place. I guess I was witnessing one of the milestones in his life - the moment when some of the magic of childhood starts to fade away. It was a hard thing to watch.

I told him that he was right about the parents being behind the whole thing & he thought about it again for a minute, letting it all sink in. Then, in his typical fashion, he told me that he wanted to stay up & see how the whole thing worked – how I got the gifts out under the tree & where they were kept. One of these days, I may let him see what goes on behind the scenes.

Incidentally, he wasn’t the least bit upset about learning the truth. The ex, on the other hand – yeesh! You would’ve thought I’d just ran over her puppy. “Now Christmas is ruined! Why did you tell him?!?” Uh, because I wasn’t going to lie to him, maybe? She even tried to tell him that I was wrong & that there really was a Santa. It was really pathetic to see.

Oh, & the Boy’s response to all of this?

“What about the Easter Bunny?”

Sunday, December 14, 2003

"Ladies and gentlemen, we got him" - L. Paul Bremer, head of the Coalition Provisional Authority

Where were you when you heard the news?

Check out The Command Post for more links.

Thank you, Lord. Please, keep our men & women safe & bring them home soon.

Thursday, December 11, 2003

MLCotW: Pointing readers in the right direction since mid-2003

For those of you linking to me from crushkill.com, sorry to disappoint you, but I am not Brian Manil, he of the rather large & potentially unhealthy alcohol intake.

The closest I come to imbibing is a little nip of Ny-Quil when I'm sick. And Butter Rum Lifesavers.
New blood

Since I’ve been subjected to listening to Christmas music, I’ve noticed something. There are really only about 5 different traditional Christmas tunes & everyone & their frickin’ dog keeps doing remakes of them. There’s “Jingle Bells”; “White Christmas”; “Frosty the Snowman”; “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas”; &, one of the most annoying songs ever written, “The 12 Days of Christmas.” There's a few more, but you get the point.

I think it’s time for some new songs. Here are a few ideas I have:

Bring Back My Lawn Santa, You Lousy Punks
Tangled Light Strings/Crap! I Put A Staple Through The Christmas Light String Medley
Underwear & Socks
Some Assembly Required
Stinkypants, The Chili Lovin’ Elf

They’re just titles right now. Feel free to add actual words to them.

And, after watching the atrocity that was the new Charlie Brown Christmas special a couple nights ago (instead of Rudolph – I feel like I’ve betrayed an old friend), here are a few ideas for new, instant classic holiday specials:

A Texas Chainsaw Christmas
Survivor: North Pole
Phil & Phyllis, The Hermaphroditic Elf
Merry Christmas With Marilyn Manson & Friends

These are sure to become beloved holiday shows, shows that the whole family can gather ‘round the tube & watch together.

Tuesday, December 09, 2003

I'm not dead yet

I figured since it's been almost a week since I last posted that I should write something so that all 5 of my loyal readers will keep gracing the pages of MLCotW. So, to fulfill a promise I made & also because it's a story that I love, I give you - My Trip To Arkansas! Yes, I realize it's a couple months late. Sue me. Find the first installment here. Find the next installment here:

Meet the Parents - 10/2/03

After a tour of the Big City, we made our way up to the little town where T & her parents live. It's a nice little place, smaller than Yucaipa, but a little more spread out. A lot less traffic & a nice laidback atmosphere. People are actually friendly. You don't worry about accidentally looking at someone the wrong way & being shot at. It was culture shock, big time.

We stopped by her house for a little bit & talked (you'd think we'd be out of things to talk about after three months of talking) & got to know each other. Then, after a couple calls from her parents, we made our way out to their house, where both T & I would be staying. I was just a wee bit nervous about meeting her parents. She had told me a lot about her family & I looked forward to meeting them, but still, the nerves were a bit jittery. I quickly found that I had nothing to worry about. The whole time I was there, they made me feel welcome &, as the days went on, like part of the family. I saw a lot of T in her mother as they are very similar in their outlook on things & have the same sense of humor. Her father had many a story to tell & an incredibly infectious laugh. I hadn't laughed as much or as hard as I did during those five days in a long time.

The next evening, her brother, sister in law & their son made it in. Her brother has her father's ability to tell a good story & have you laughing out loud. We stayed up 'til about 1a talking. Which was kind of a bad thing because we ended up waking up about 430-5a. Not a lot of sleep was to be had on this trip. But that was fine by me. Didn't want to go wasting time with such frivolous pursuits as sleeping.

Saturday, T's sister & 3 of her children came down. Her nephew's birthday was a few days before, so the family had a get together for him & me. That was a little hard for me. Or so I thought it'd be. I'm not one for being in the spotlight much to begin with. Then top that off with being in a new place & meeting new people. My birthdays have never been met with a lot of fanfare & I'm kind of used to it being overlooked. But this was different. It didn't feel awkward. It felt good & natural & normal. It really was nice.

More to come...

Wednesday, December 03, 2003

“Sometimes - I just have to go off on the stupid”

-or-

A quickie review of “The Simple Life”

Never have a group of letters formed into words rang more true (thanks to Amy for putting those letters together). I tried watching “The Simple Life” with Paris Hilton & Nicole Richie last night, just out of curiosity. To be honest, I really can’t stand reality shows. The last one that I watched with any regularnessity was “The Real World” when they were in Los Angeles. I’m sorry, but reality shows are about the furthest thing from reality. You want reality? Let’s try “The Real World: Yucaipa.” Watch as Jay gets up in the morning with a really bad case of Gumbyhead. Follow Jay as he goes to work & does his best to keep from going postal on idiot CSR’s. Spend the evening with Jay as he surfs the web for useless & bizarre sites.

Ahem...anyway, as I said, I tried watching Tweedle Dumb & Dumber last night. The sheer amount of raw stupidity generated by these two (Hilton in particular) was stunning. How these two have managed to function this long with nothing above the brainstem is nothing short of amazing. Prime examples:

When talking about Wal-Mart (Richie was asking if their hosts hung out there), Hilton asked, “What’s Wal-Mart?” & followed that gem up with something to the effect of “Do they sell walls?” My head started feeling numb at that point.

Later, the Wonder Twins are sent to the store to get some groceries (pigs feet, of course, because that’s what everybody in Arkansas eats…peh). One of the other items on the list was generic bottled water. A simple thing to find – for someone who knows what the word generic means. Yes - Hilton actually asked what generic meant. I realize that we run in different circles & that for some of us "generic" is a brand name & all, but fer cryin' out loud...

After that display of brilliance, I felt a pop in my brain & had to turn the channel, lest I suffered permanent brain damage.

So, to wrap this little review up, the show is beyond stupid. My advice? Find something more worthwhile to do than watch two oxygen starved brains try form coherent thoughts. I dunno…pick lint from your belly button & make a sweater. Alphabetize your utensil drawer. Make a self portrait out of macaroni & Elmer's glue. Any of these ideas would be a better & more productive way to spend the evening.

Tuesday, December 02, 2003

"It's toasty in here"

Irene walked into the office & said "It's toasty in here" to which I replied, "It should be warm. We're in Christmas Music Hell."

You can call me a Grinch or a Humbug or whatever you want - Christmas music gets on my nerves after about 5 minutes. If I have to listen to Disney characters sing carols or "Elmo Saves Christmas" for the next 24 days, well, I can't be held responsible for what carnage may ensue.

There are a few holiday tunes I can handle. Some of them I listen to all during the year. Others are only broken out to counteract having to hear Mannheim Steamroller & Celine Dion over & over again:

The 12 Days of Christmas - Bob & Doug Mackenzie
Santa & His Old Lady - Cheech & Chong
Father Christmas - The Kinks
Santa Baby - Everclear
Let It Snow - Luscious Jackson
Christmas Wrapping - The Waitresses
Baby Please Come Home - U2
Please Come Home For Christmas - The Eagles
You're A Mean One, Mr. Grinch - from the cartoon version, not the crapfest that came out a couple years ago
Hark! The Herald Angels Sing - Both the Peanuts & Nat "King" Cole versions
O, Holy Night - The South Park version (the only holiday song to include a cattle prod)
Santa Claus Is Coming To Town - Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band
Little Saint Nick - The Beach Boys (although Sugar Ray did a pretty good version, too)
Merry Christmas (I Don't Want To Fight Tonight) - The Ramones
I Am Santa Claus (done to the tune of Iron Man) - Bob Rivers
2000 Miles - The Pretenders
Pretty much any Bing Crosby or Brian Setzer Christmas tune

My musical tastes are...um...scary, to say the least.