Friday, December 31, 2004


As you may know, I live in a state that requires the constant use of heaters, both large and small. I have three in my office at the present time, although I can only use one at any given moment due to the fact that everyone else on my fuse uses their heaters as well, and if I plugged in the other two it would pop the breaker within seconds.

Yes, I speak from experience.

In any case, before we got into the heaviest part of our cold season, I was using my little miniature heater. It came with low, high and fan settings so that I could use it in the summer when it got above 60 degrees and we were melting. Which is all well and good but, as mentioned, it's darned cold here right about now, so the last thing I was about to do was to put that puppy on the fan setting, you know?

So one morning earlier this month I got to work relatively early, turned the heater onto high, and I dived into the daily tasks that make up the job that I am not so enamoured of as of late. the day went on it seemed to get colder and colder in my office. Upon my return from lunch I left my coat on. Several times throughout the afternoon and early evening I left my office to linger in the department, which was so much warmer than my office was. But it wasn't just my office.

The department was frigid as well, and my co-workers were freezing, too. However, we chalk it up to the venting system; it seems that when it's warm upstairs, the vents blow cold air on us, and vice versa, and the vents? They were blowing cold air a-plenty by five o'clock that afternoon! In contrast to how the department felt to our shivering bodies, we would leave the department periodically simply to stand in the hallway, because crossing the threshold brought such a change in temperature that our skin breathed a sigh of relief the second our feet hit the linoleum.

At the end of the day, still shivering miserably and cursing the venting system above me, I leaned down to turn off my little heater only to find...the setting had been on "fan" all day long and, therefore, it had been filling my office with cold air, blown directly at where I was sitting while doing my work.

I laughed, of course. This seemed to be something that I would do, and since it was, there was no point in getting mad, right? So I left my office and pointed it out to the co-worker, who immediately started laughing - she had just leaned down to turn off her heater and found that it had been on the fan setting, too!

As we were laughing, our co-worker waaaaaay down at the end of the hall popped her head into the department to see what was so gosh-durned funny, and once we'd informed her of the hilarity-inducing circumstances, she began to laugh as well - because she had found her heater on the fan setting, too!

At that point we conducted an office-wide survey only to find that every single heater in the office had been set to "fan" that day. Not a one had performed its proper heating function!

We all laughed some more (because it warmed us up, you see), and people just chalked it up to one of the early birds playing a prank, but I know the truth. Since I have to click past the fan setting to turn on the heat, I set the trend this morning by stopping mid-way, and the rest of the heaters? They just followed suit. That's the whole story right there.

The people I work with? Someday they'll learn exactly how powerful I am.


(Posted by ETS, as a Christmas present and to make up for the fact that she reneged on an agreement to guest-post during Thanksmas!)

Saturday, December 25, 2004

A Quick Holiday Greeting

Here's to hoping you & yours, Loyal Readers (who I hope are still loyal, despite MLCotW being bereft of the normal flow of new posts lately), have had a wonderful, super spectacular & mega-nifty Christmas.

T & I have spent a wonderfully quiet day together (The Boy's with the ex today), sticking to our vow to stay in our jammies today (I'm so digging my new Homer Simpson lounge pants! Woo hoo!), watching newly acquired movies & listening to the new Maroon 5 & Switchfoot. Well, the fairly new Maroon 5 & Switchfoot.

T just commented that we've been fairly lazy today. To which I responded -

Yes. Yes, we have.

Merry Christmas all!

Saturday, December 18, 2004

Yes, I'm Back

And have been since Monday. But, due to illness, sleepyheadedness & feeling all around blah about things, the posting's been light. I'll get some interesting nuggets of the fun & excitement that is my life here soon.

Until then, have a cookie.

Monday, December 13, 2004

Gingerbread contest

My work is having a gingerbread house building contest. Each team gets a house making kit. Rules are this: Use anything you want as long as it is edible. You can bring pieces premade...but the majority of the assembly has to be done during the two hour contest. We have a little team...originally called Team IT...we now call ourselves the IT girls...because there are two IT teams. we had a the first of two planning meetings.

We decided on a theme...we are building "santa's barn". There will be marshmellow reindeer (my department) and other animals...we are going to slap licorice on the sides of the house to make it a barn..with graham cracker doors...snowy bales of hay (frosted shredded wheat)...a stone walk (necco) and a tiled roof (nilla wafers). Of course...this may be a lofty goal because of the three of us...none of us have even built a gingerbread house...ever...and only one of us has even decorated one. The houses will then be used as centerpieces for the university holiday party...wish us luck...hopefully I will have some pictures over at BADGROOVE...contest is THURSDAY...wish us luck...we want that pizza party!!! I am sure we won't win...but we will have fun trying!!!

Posted by:
Guest Author: Amy of Badgroove

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

Thanksmas recipe

Since our beloved J and T are celebrating Thanksmas with family I thought I would share a yummy recipe. This recipe is sooo easy and delicious...I thought you would enjoy it:


2-3 cans of pie filling (any kind will work...pumpkin, apple or blueberry are my favorites)
1 package of yellow cake mix (spice cake works well too- especially with pumpkin filling)
1 cup of pecans, chopped
1 1/2 sticks of butter, melted

Spread the pie filling in bottom of greased 9x13 pan. Spread DRY cake mix evenly over all. Pour melted butter over all- as evenly as possible. Sprinkle nuts over the top. Bake for 30-40 minutes in 350ºF. oven.

From the kitchen of: AMY

Tuesday, December 07, 2004

A Merry Thanksmas To All!

Tomorrow, T & I are heading back to Arkansas to celebrate the First Annual Thanksmas Day (Can something really be a "First Annual"? Doesn't "annual" imply that it's happened once before, therefore making it not the "first", but a subsequent celebration of the festivities? Inquiring minds want to know.). Since being in Arkansas would require an insane amount of extention cords for my computer to come along with us, I've left the keys to the kingdom that is MLCotW in the hands of the lovely & talented Miss Amy of Badgroove fame & Miss ETS of Echoes Of A Dream.

Play nice & have a cookie or three while I'm away. There's milk in the fridge.
Ahhhh!!! It Burns!!!

*This was actually posted a few days ago, but Blogger ate it. I guess it's sick of Christmas music, too - Jay

Today's the first day that we've started listening to Christmas music on the radio. I've heard the same five songs about seventy gazillion times now. And the worst of them all?

Anything by Manheim Steamroller.

I'm feeling nauseated.

Excuse me while I go drive letter openers into my ears.

Tuesday, November 30, 2004

Holiday Cooking Tip

I know, this just missed Thanksgiving (which is when I remembered it), but, hey - I'm sure more than a few of you might be making goodies for Christmas. Besides, this tip can be used year round.

Cooking Tip: If you don't have an electric hand blender & those potatoes are just refusing to mash, take a spoon or fork with a flat handle, attach to an electric drill & - Voila! Potatoes a la Black & Decker!

Monday, November 29, 2004

blOgS rAWk!!!

I decided to try the "Next Blog" button at the top of my page, just to see what's going on out there & where ol' Blogger might take me.

I've now seen enough blogs in Spanish/Swahili/poorly written English, blogs written by junior high school girls & sites where pEEps tHiNk iT's kEWl 2 wRiTe lIkE tHIs to last me a lifetime. In fact, I think I might just throw up if I run across another black backgrounded, tiny pink fonted assault on my senses.

I did, however come across a few with some potential. V Stands For Vampire, Mike's Blog, & The A Files are three that I stumbled across that a) have something interesting to read, b) are well written & c) hAvE nO tEXt LiKe tHIs.

Give 'em a looksee, Loyal Readers, & see what you think.
I did a little Christmas shopping...

...but not for who you'd expect. No, I haven't shopped for T yet. And we've gotten most of The Boy's schtuff bought. T's also taken care of most everyone in both of our families.

No, the gift I have to offer is for a bunch of complete strangers. People I've never met. Nay, not even a glance have I laid upon them. This gift is for all of the people who went shopping on Black Friday, particularly the one's who went shopping where T works.

For all of you people who lined up outside the store, some many hours before the doors opened at 530a, in hopes of getting a jump on the season's shopping & maybe getting a few deals in the process; for the countless multitudes that literally ran into the store, looking for the specially priced DVD players; for those of you who crabbed & complained & swore at my wife because you & several thousand others with wet sand for brains couldn't understand why it was taking so long to get through the checkout line; for those of you who acted like imbeciles because the store only had a hundred DVD players in stock & to you who tried to blame the store for keeping you in line & making you buy more crap that you or whomever you bought it for really didn't need, I give you all -

A boot to the head. Or a kick in the groin.

Your choice.

Shoot, if you ask nicely, I might just give you both. I'm just that freakin' swell of a fella.

In fact, if I'm out doing my shopping, or if I stop in to my wife's store & hear you kvetching about how crowded the place is, I'll give you repeated boots & kicks & perhaps, if I'm feeling reeeeally generous, a general pummeling about the face & upper body.

No need to thank me, either. Your groans & cries are thanks enough for me.


Thursday, November 25, 2004

Happy Thanksgiving!

Have a wonderful holiday, Loyal Readers!

And, my most sincere condolences to the Turkey family. Your sacrifice was tasty was greatly appreciated.

Sunday, November 21, 2004

Y'know how they say it never rains in Southern California?

Well, they (whoever "they" are) didn't say anything about snow.

Yes, you read that right. Snow. In Southern California. And lots of it. Not just a little "dusting." No, no, no. It's a couple inches deep. From here all the way out to where my mom lives, which is about forty miles from here & in the flatlands. It's too heavy for the trees & they're falling over all around us. Even the poor palm trees don't know what to do (plenty of pix have been taken of a truly So Cal event - a palm tree covered with snow).

In my thirty-three years on this planet, I've never seen it snow. I've been in it. I've romped & played & skiied & thrown the odd snowball or two. But to see it actually floating down out of the heavens? Nope. And, I never expected to see it coming down while I lived in the Valley. I mean, Yucaipa does sit up higher than the rest of the San Bernardino Valley, but we still are (normally) too low to get anything. It just doesn't happen here, Loyal Readers.

So, T has now gotten to see me get all happy about seeing live, wild deer & become a complete goof because it snowed.

Thank you, Global Warming! This has been fun.

Monday, November 08, 2004


A wee little review of the trailers from Friday night.

First up, "Cars", another Pixar movie that I have, strangely enough, not heard anything of. I don't know if they didn't want to steal any of "The Incredibles" thunder or what, but this was the first that I'd seen of it. And personally, it doesn't look all that great. It looks almost like "Toy Story" (which was great), except with talking cars. Maybe once I know a little more about it, it'll grow on me.

Next, the SpongeBob Squarepants movie. Oh boy. A little SpongeBob goes a loooong way. I'm suddenly a little glad that the ex has The Boy when that movie opens. I'm sure she'll have him there to see the first showing, but I won't have to be sitting in a theatre full of kids singing the SpongeBob theme.

Moving on to "Christmas With the Kranks". Did Tim Allen lose a bet or something? Was making this movie part of some community service he had to do? Ugh! This movie looks bad. Bad bad. Bad bad bad bad bad. The TV ads are totally misleading. Not that they were making me want to see it in the first place. They make it look like the Kranks are a couple of Scrooge-y, Christmas hating humbugs. Actually, they are quite the opposite. But, when their daughter leaves for the holidays, the Kranks decide to take a vacation themselves & don't decorate their home the way the rest of the neighbors do (the whole neighborhood looks like the Griswald's house in "Christmas Vacation", although without Randy Quaid in his bathrobe emptying out his motorhome's waste tank - classic Christmas schtuff their, Loyal Readers!). That much is shown on the TV spots. What they neglect to tell you is that hijinks ensue when the daughter comes home unexpectedly & the Kranks rush to deck the halls before she arrives. I'm sure there's some warm & fuzzy moral to the whole thing, but I don't think I'll be around to find out.

I can't believe I just spent all that time describing this stinkburger.

Now, to cleanse the pallette, on to the good schtuff - yes, Loyal Readers...the Episode III trailer.

Oh. My. Stars. And. Garters! This movie may make up, for a lot of people, the whole Jar Jar Binks thing. Maybe even the Ewoks. Even though I haven't been a big fan of the Hayden Christensen Anakin (he looks about as menacing as a hangnail & I reeeeally thought that adding him to the end of Return of the Jedi was quite unnecessary - & just a little unnnatural), he looks like he's going to be a baaaad man, what with his eyes glowing red & all. Darth Sidious/Palpatine/the Emperor looks all nasty & eee-vil & ravaged by the Dark Side & then...oooooh boy...Darth freakin' Vader. With James Earl Jones' voice. That deep voice with the breathing sounds. Boyohboyohboyohboy! Yoda's looking like he's ready to open a can of Jedi Whup 'em on someone (gee, I wonder who?), but I don't remember any scenes with the galaxy's baddest feather plucker, Mace Windu. And something tells me that Princess Leia went to the same intergalactic beauty salon that her mommy went to, as Padme' is sporting the "space buns" 'do that Leia had in the original "Star Wars". Yes, I'll admit, it looks as silly as it did the first time. But, I do not care, Loyal Readers, for I am a loyal devotee' to to series, good or bad. I will be there, big geeky grin on my face, bouncing up & down in my seat when those words show up on the screen:

"A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away..."

If there were anymore trailers, I can't remember 'em. I think I blanked out until the movie started.
Weekend Wrap-Up

It was, for the most part, a nice weekend. As well as the aforementioned trip to see "The Incredibles" (& the megacool showing of the Episode III trailer - I still giggle like a schoolgirl when I think about it), I took The Boy to a last minute birthday party on Saturday at Pharaoh's (a local minigolf/arcade/amusement park with an Egyptian theme), went up to Oak Glen for lunch (& some fresh hot apple cider & apple pie, of course) after church with The Boy & T & then, made a stop by the local thrift/estate sale store to see what new treasures were in stock.

All in all, a good, fun weekend.

And how was yours?
About Me

I was at work & bored (what else is new?). So, because of that, I decided to subject treat you to a meme list. Probably not a "One Hundred Things About Me" list, because I don't think I could find one hundred interesting things about me to share with you. I'm just not all that fascinating, people.

So, I present to you the "Open Ended List of Things About Me" list.

Ta daa!

1. I'm a Southern Californian, born & bred.
2. I've lived my whole life in & around the same area.
3. I had no desire to ever leave the state until I met my wife.
4. Now, I can't wait until we can move to Arkansas.
5. I love the desert.
6. Not too keen on being cold.
7. Despite this fact, I've tried snowskiing twice.
8. Both times were more like semi-controlled sliding than actual skiing.
9. Despite that fact, I want to try it again.
10. Although I was not accident prone as a child (keeping the Band-Aid & Bactine companies in business was my little sister's job), I received fourteen stitches over the course of several accidents while growing up, & two more since reaching adultedness.
11. When I hurt myself, I made it worth the trip to the hospital.
12. I have two sisters & two & a half brothers.
13. I don't know which half my half-brother is. If you see a pair of legs running around somewhere, that may well be my half-brother.
14. Tens run in my family. My uncle is ten years older than my older sister; my brother is ten years older than me; I'm ten years older than my oldest niece; her sister is exactly ten years older than my son.
15. That probably interested me far more than it did anyone else.
16. I had my artwork put out for the public to see for the first (& so far, only) time in first grade.
17. I made a greeting card to the city of Colton, CA that was blown up & put on a billboard.
18. The only instruction that the teacher gave us was that we couldn't put "Merry Christmas Colton" on it.
19. I'll give you three guesses as to what I wrote on mine.
20. I made my mom drive past the billboard almost everyday for two weeks before it was put up.
21. I was a stubborn child.
22. I haven't gotten any better about that as I've aged.
23. I've passed that trait on to my son. Heaven help us all.
24. I've never drank, smoked or done drugs. Which is probably a really good thing given my stubbornness.
25. I'm a Star Wars geek (big newsflash there).
26. I've seen the original Star Wars well over two hundred fifty times.
27. I didn't date in high school.
28. I'll bet you can figure out why.
29. I played bass in a punk band when I was in the service.
30. I was married to my ex at the time so I couldn't test the theory that chicks dig guys in bands.
31. We never played anywhere other that the guitarist's garage, so I guess that was a moot point anyway.
32. I was in a video for Great White's "Call It Rock & Roll".
33. Actually, the place where I was standing went black as the boom camera panned over, so you can't really see me.
34. I've hated that song ever since.
35. Not because of the lousy camera angle, mind you, but because I found out that when a group films a "concert" video, they play the song about fifty-eight gajillion times. Close to the end of the show, the stage banter went something like:
Singer: Hey! Do ya wanna hear Call It Rock & Roll again?!?
Crowd: No!!! We want you to stop playing that song!!! Unlock the doors & let us leave!!!
36. I hate clowns.
37. And balloons.
38. And I really hate balloon making clowns. Pure, unadulterated eee-vil, I tells ya.
39. In grade school, I taught myself to write left handed, in part to impress a girl who was left handed (again, you wonder why I didn't date in school?), but more importantly, in case I broke my right hand. I neither got the girl (she moved) nor have I ever had to use my emergency back up handwriting contingency plan.
40. I would say that's a good thing.
41. This list went on longer than I thought it would.
42. I would say that's a good thing, too.

Friday, November 05, 2004

Movie Review

We just got back from seeing "The Incredibles". My opinion?

It was wicked!

You'll have to see the movie to fully appreciate the review.

The one thing better than the movie itself?

A preview of Episode III: Rise of the Sith.

Be still, my geeky l'il heart! My geekout while watching the trailer was on par with the recent Hollywood Stormtrooper geekout: bouncing in my seat, dorky grin across my face, hair on the back of my neck standing on end. Even The Boy, who got a little geeky over the SpongeBob Squarepants trailer, scooted away from me.

But, I do not care. I am a Star Wars geek & proud of it!

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

Four More Years

Look at it this way, ye of the Democratic persuasion - in four years, it'll have to be someone other than Bush.

Unless Jeb runs for office.

Or W declares himself Lord Grand Poobah for Life of the United States.

Tuesday, November 02, 2004


Like a kid who's filled up on too much Halloween candy, I've ingested waaaay too many horror movies & ghost themed TV shows this past month. It's a good thing that it's November, because I don't know if I could handle many more shows about haunted hotels & movies about killer houses/teenagers/axe murderers/etc. I did have oodles of fun MST3K'ing the movies, though. That's always a good thing.

I'm surprised that T didn't up & leave mid-month.

Now, we get to overdose on cooking shows in preparation for the big chowdown at the end of the month (being hosted at our house this year). stomach!
Anywhere But Here

As I write this, it's a little after 1030a. It seems like I've been at work a lot longer than two & a half hours. I woke up this morning with this intense desire to spend my day anywhere other than at work. I so envy ETS & her relaxationizing that she's taking part in. I, myself, have to wait another month or so to take a much needed break. Until then, though, one thing I need to do is to get out & about. Away from everything, even if it's just for a little bit.

Those that know me know that I'm not a people person. There are only a handful of people that I truly enjoy being around or even talking to on a regular basis. The rest? I could go a looooong time without seeing them. But, alas, it seems impossible to get away from these people. Most of these people I don't even know.

My drive home from work used to be a nice relaxing drive through a beautiful canyon. Orange groves all over the place. Horse ranches. No crowds. Then, everyone else started to take the same route. I had to stop taking that route because the traffic would back up &/or I'd inevitably get a slowpoke in front of me. The curse of being Mr. Popularity - everyone wants to be like me. That sounds a bit egotistical, but that's how I feel a lot of the time. That people seem to want to be around me. Not egotistical. Wait...that still sounded egotistical. Oh well - so be it.

My drive to work is the same way now. As with most places in So Cal in the mornings, the freeways are a nightmare. I took to driving through another canyon (yes, we have a few of them in the area). Again, it was quiet, not crowded & no traffic. I could listen to music. It was my "morning prayer time" as well - time to prepare myself, mentally & spiritually, for the day. Now, I sit in a line a block long to get into the canyon & another one out the other side. It takes me twenty minutes to go less than ten miles. Then, it takes twenty-five minutes to get back in the evening. I can't stand it anymore.

When I am at home, it's hardly a quiet evening when I get to listen to bass booming up through the floor. And when it's not coming from inside the apartment below, it's from a car. To their credit, the kids downstairs are apologetic about the noise & are quick to turn it down. But why should I have to go down there in the first place? You live in a frickin' apartment, people! Your home is attached to mine. I do my best not to stomp on your ceiling - can you show me the same courtesy & not rattle my floor?

My other neighbor likes to sit on his patio & smoke - which then wafts into my apartment, making it so I either have to put a fan in front of the door to keep the smoke out or close the door altogether.

Work's not much better. If you've followed this site for a bit, you know that I share my office with two other people. Of course, I'm the only one who likes having the door closed. My cellmates want it left open, or part way open, or just open enough to annoy the crap out of me. Then, we have people coming in & out constantly. It's noisy here all the time, with forklifts & cherrypickers & loud people & phones going all the time.

I just want peace. I want quiet. I want calm.

Last night, T came home late in the evening. We got The Boy to bed & then sat & drank some hot chocolate, had some Grant Lee Buffalo playing in the background & just talked. We just enjoyed each others company. I've missed that a lot lately. With her work schedule, I barely get to see her or spend any quality time with her. Last Wednesday was the first day in a long time that we spent together, just doing things together. We went & had breakfast & then milled around the mall in San Bernardino. We drove up to Oak Glen & had some hot cider & apple pie & listened to good music while it rained (& snowed a few feet higher - literally). We saw some deer going into one of the apple orchards. We went to a thrift store & had fun looking around. It was just a good day. It was nice to have her by my side instead of over a phone line.

I want to go somewhere where it's not crowded. Where the people that you do run into are nice & pleasant. I don't want to see traffic. I don't want to hear the drone of cars. I don't want to be in this office, having to listen to horns & lifts & people. I want to be able to go home & not hear my neighbors. I want to be able to sit outside & smell the night air, not have my nose assaulted by cigarette smoke. I want home to be a comfortable, inviting place.

I guess I just need a change. I'm sick of the things that bug me. I'm tired of being beaten down by the world around me.

Vacation can't get here quick enough.

Saturday, October 30, 2004

Everything I Needed To Know About Life I Learned At Yesterday's Meeting

Yesterday, at our biweekly office meeting, The Boss had us do a teamwork exercise. In this exercise, we were required to pass two pens around in a circle of nine people.

Sounds simple so far, right?

Well, the catch was that there was one 'facilitator', & the facilitator was the only one that could confirm whether or not the pens could be passed to the next person. The object was to get the pens all the way around the cirle & back to the facilitator. Chaos ensued as people would forget what to do or get confused & freeze up altogether. This was supposed to show how to work as a team.

What did it show me?

That I don't play well with others.

I kept wanting to grab the pens & hand them to the facilitator myself. After I beat The Boss with the pens. The whole method was inefficient & it drove me nuts.

I'm betting this is why I never cared for team sports.
News Flash

REUTERS Gaza Strip - Palestinian leader Yassir Arafat announced today that he's entered the world of Gangsta Rap, planning a nine week tour of the Middle East & performing under the name "MC Ara Phat."

When asked about his sudden carreer move, Ara Phat stood up & replied "Yo! My name is Ara Phat/& I'm sure you'll see/That I'm the baddest rapper/over age sixty!"

He then threw a sign & yelled "Yo! West Bank for evah!"

Wednesday, October 27, 2004

"I love it when a plan comes together!" - Hannibal, The A-Team

Yes, oh yes I do!

I'm thinking that this whole court mess that the ex thought she'd kick up just didn't quite work out the way she wanted it to.

Can you say "She's out an extra fourteen hours of visitation that weren't hers to begin with"?

I knew you could.

Thursday, October 21, 2004


Contrary to what you may gather from this site, I am not some huge, raging "Full House" fan. Really. The show was forty-seven shades of annoying. But for some reason, they've become a fixture here at MLCotW. The unofficial patron saints of my site, if you will. My site has become one of the many stops for people looking for info on Dave Coulier (but not the Olsen Twins, surprisingly) (Or, I should say, thankfully) (Preverts).

I don't know how. I don't know why.

Get over it.
The I Don't Think So (tm) Award

Ladies & Gentlemen, I welcome you to the first I Don't Think So (tm) Award ceremony, given to celebrate those people, places, situations & other nouns that, when you hear about them, make you shake your head & say "I don't think so."

Without further ado, I give you today's winner.

Don't ask me why, but on the radio this morning, I was listening to an interview with Vin Di Bona. For those unfamiliar with the name (which is probably most everyone), this is the man that has inflicted such atrocities on us as brought us such fine viewing fare as "America's Funniest Home Videos" & "Battle of the Network Stars I-IV." During the interview, he made the following comment:

Bob Saget, off camera or on stage...he's a rebel.

All together now - I Don't Think So!

Congratulations, Mr. Di Bona. You have just earned yourself the first I Don't Think So (tm) Award.

Let's give him a big round of applause, everyone!

Thursday, October 14, 2004

The 33rd Annual Jayfest

Continuing in the grand tradition of the 32nd Annual Jayfest, this one was celebrated with cool gifts & mucho yummy eats.

The haul:
Birthday greetings from Dave Coulier, John Stamos & an Olsen Twin (Bob Saget was a no-show...slacker!)
The Dark Knight Returns graphic novel
London Calling, the Legacy Edition from The Clash
A shirt & pullover
Some denero
Heart of the Wild by John Eldredge
The Star Wars DVD set, widescreen (natch)
A scrumptious dinner & dessert, made from scratch by my wonderful wife
My son wanting to be with me on my night
Rousing renditions of 'Happy Birthday' sung by my coworkers, my mom, T, her parents & The Boy's friends

All in all, a very good day.

Here's looking to the 34th Annual Jayfest.

Hope to see you there.

Wednesday, October 06, 2004

*Crickets Chirping*

Is this thing still on? Hello? Hellooooo...

Yup, it's still on. Just quiet.

Not a lot to say, I suppose. Nothing really to rant about. No built up, road rage induced venom to spew. No stories about the idiots that inhabit the world around me that I haven't told you all a couple hundred times over.

I just feel...calm. Serene. Un-bitter. Non-angry.

Am I mellowing with age? Is thirty-somethingoranother the time when people start calming down? Yeesh! I hope not. I was rather looking forward to being a crotchety old man, sitting on the front porch in my bermuda shorts & black socks, squirting kids with the garden hose that dare to walk on my lawn. Yelling obscenities at the neighbor who lets his dog do his business in my yard. Being able to do odd things & just be looked as as "quirky" instead of the "weird" that I get now.

And the senior discounts.

Ah, yes - the senior discounts.

But I digress (I've always wanted to say that). I can't readily explain my recent descent into mellowness. I mean, I'm happier than I've ever been before in large part because of T. The Boy's doing better in school this year & has been a lot easier to deal with.

But, I still work in the same crappy job (although, I did finally make the "four feet to the left" move to the desk vacated by the Blonde In The Corner).

I still have to deal with the ex (but I have my beautiful wife to stand by my side when I do have to deal with the ex).

People at work still annoy me (but, I have a job).

People on the road still annoy me (but, I have a car, as underpowered for my taste as she may be).

People in general still annoy me (yeah...I don't think that's going to change any time soon).

I'm still putting on weight (but, I have food to eat).

Our plan to move to a house sometime last summer fell through (but, I at least have a roof over my head)

I guess maybe it's my perspective on things. When I look at the big grand scheme that is my life, things really don't seem so bad.

Definitely could be worse.

Monday, September 27, 2004


I get some awfully strange email in my inbox. Go over to ETS' place to see the latest.

Sunday, September 26, 2004

Pop Quiz

Just because I was bored. Apparently, I know my music.

Good. You know your music. You should be able to
work at Championship Vinyl with Rob, Dick and

Do You Know Your Music (Sorry MTV Generation I Doubt You Can Handle This One)
brought to you by Quizilla

Saturday, September 25, 2004

Guest Postin', Aussie Style

Note from me: I had invited one of my friends (& one of you three or so Loyal Readers) from Australia to give the guest posting thing a whirl. Had I checked my Hotmail account earlier in the week, I would've seen that she'd taken me up on the offer.


So, although it's a little late, here's Elly with some insight on a little game called Australian Rules Football.

Take it away, Elly!

Aussie Rules

We have a terrible problem down here on the great continent of Australia. Should we go to the Australian Rules Grand Final next week end? Yes it is the controversy if the year or at least the season.

Maybe I should first explain the game. This of course comes from a female who sees the footy as a bunch of blokes running around a bloody big paddock chasing an oval shaped piece of inflated leather. Some body once told me that it comes from some primal instinct in men to chase an oval shaped piece of leather around a bloody big paddock.

The aim of the game is to boot the foot ball between to upright goal posts. If you manage to do this you get six points. If you aim is off but you get it between the goal posts and the posts either side you get one point or a behind (the only game in the world where they give you a point for getting it close enough). Why they call it a behind I have no idea but I guess somebody thought was and he obviously got away with it.

The rest of the game is made up of the teams hand passing and kicking the ball towards the goals. Which is where the game got its nick name of "aerial ping pong" The excitement is watching them tackle each other in the process taking marks and 'screamers'. No I'm not going to explain that.

But back to our problem. You see Australian rules football originated in Melbourne in the state of Victoria. And due to lack of finances in some clubs, other states bought teams and the game grudgingly be came national and the VFL (Victorian Football League) became the AFL (Australian Football league) . A few years later some other states added their own teams.

But the game still remained Victorian. Until Now... Oh the horror! The grand final will be played by two non Victorian teams! *Shudder* *Cough* It's the headlines in every paper and on the news. Will people go to the Grand Final? Will the heavens burst? Will the milk go off before the used by date?

I guess all these will be answered next Saturday when the final of the big one will be played at the MCG.

Me? I think I'll take the day off due to lack of interest.

Me again: Let us know who won, Elly.

Or if the heavens burst.

Or if the milk went bad before it's expiration date.

Inquiring minds want to know!

Sunday, September 19, 2004

I found this...

...amongst the search engine referrals looking for Dave Couiler & Chia Head Mohawks:

Stomach moving under ribcage

And #4 on Yahoo!Search, to boot!

Y'all are just. Plain. Weird.

Can someone please explain to me why, regardless of how late I go to bed, I still wake up at 7a every freakin' day?

Friday, September 17, 2004

Fourteen Years

I found a picture of you
Those were the happiest days of my life
Like a break in the battle, was your part
In the wretched life of a lonely heart

~Back On The Chain Gang
- The Pretenders

September 30th, 1930, my stepfather was born in Mount Pleasant, PA. By the time he was three, his parents had died & he & his sister were orphans. The only family they had lived in England, so they were shipped off to live with them. Dad lived what I always pictured as a very Charles Dickensian life growing up. An abusive uncle. Went to work in the coal mines at twelve years old. Dirt poor. All during World War II to boot.

He & his sister were taken in by a couple of women, who I'm not sure if they were blood relatives or not. He did call them Aunt Stella & Lois. They treated Dad well & I remember him speaking of them often while I was growing up.

When he was old enough, he joined the Royal Air Force. A short time after that, he learned that he & his sister were American citizens (he had always thought he was a British subject) & was allowed to leave the RAF & return to the States if he agreed to sign up for the draft. He came back here, along with his sister & her husband.

And then the Korean War broke out & he was drafted & sent back to Germany.

Fortunately, Dad liked the Service.

Years later, he married his first wife & they had a son. They settled in the little town of Colton, CA, & Dad got a job with the state Department of Transportation, where he stayed for twenty-six years, painting the stripes on the highways all over San Bernardino County.

At some point, he & his first wife divorced. Then, some time later, he met my mom & they married. They & my little sister & I became a family. He took us & made us feel like his own children, never making us feel second rate. He taught me how to do things. How to work on & repair things. He taught me to eat everything on my plate, because waste was a bad thing. He taught me how to treat others. He taught me how to treat my wife & children.

He always made me feel special. He showed interest in my schooling. He'd sit as I showed him the comic books I'd won at the local shop. He bought me my first comic book. He'd look at the models I'd built & my Lego cars. We spent about a month working on my Millenium Falcon model, even through a blackout. He'd play Track & Field on the Nintendo with me. He showed me how to garden & cultivate. He taught me about the different parts of an engine. Even when he was really sick, just before he passed away, he came out to help me work on my car.

He would discipline us, but I know, without a doubt, that it was done in a loving way, to correct us, not to inflict pain or to frighten us. Once in sixth grade, I had gotten into a fight, over nothing really. The kid I fought with was a good friend. It was a misunderstanding. The principal said that I could take a suspension or a swat. Dad told them, in no uncertain terms, that no one touched his child. His child. Not his stepchild. Not his wife's child.

His child.

He was so proud of me when I joined the Air Force. I actually had the chance to get out before I went to Basic Training, but I didn't want to disappoint him, as much as I wanted to get out. Even though I didn't like being in the Service, I knew he was proud of me. It made it a lot easier for me.

He passed away fourteen years ago this week. He's been gone from us, physically, longer than he'd been with us. I know that he'll always be with me in my heart & in who I am as a father, husband & a man in general, but, oh, what I'd give to be able to talk to him. To go fishing or play cards or work on the car or anything. I wish he was here to see The Boy & to meet T. I know they'd both love him.

I wish all of you, Loyal Readers, could've met him.
And People Wonder Why I'm So Cranky

Email exchange this morning with a Customer Service Rep:

Me: According to the DHL site, the shipment was delivered in Spain today at 1230p, signed for by XXXX
CSR: So, the shipment is enroute, then?
Me: *Repatedly slamming head into desk in vain attempt to lose consciousness & avoid dealing with CSR*

Thursday, September 16, 2004

Too Tough To Die

I'm a t-t-t-t-t-t-t-t-tough tough guy
I tell no tales I do no lie

I'm a t-t-t-t-t-t-t-t-tough tough guy
Halo round my head too tough to die

~Too Tough To Die
- The Ramones

I always thought they were.

Johnny Ramone 1948-2004

Tuesday, September 14, 2004

What about thirteen?

Conversation on the way to work this morning (conversational format borrowed from Chris at Rude Cactus – I promise I'll give it back):

Her: ...if I found out that you were a serial killer & had fourteen bodies buried in the back yard I'd divorce you & then change my name back to my maiden name.
Me: What if there were only thirteen bodies?
Her: We'd have to talk about that.
Born For Me

You were born for me
Beautiful and blue
Stay here with you

~ Born For Me
Paul Westerberg

I was ready to rant about my cramped office & the floor denizen coming in to take a phone call & conducting the whole conversation, quite loudly, in Spanish & about how Irene is so freakin' insistent on leaving the door partly open, even though she knows the noise drives me nuts!


Instead, though, I decided to write, by popular request, about how T & I came to be us. In looking back through MLCotW, I've seen where I've talked about T & about things we've done, but I didn't see where I actually put finger to key & wrote about how we met.

So, without further ado, here you go...

Let's start back in December of '02. The exgf & I had split for the second (& last) time. The first time was bad (a post for another time, Loyal Readers), but this time, it was a great relief. I felt free for the first time in two years. But, after being in a relationship with someone for that long, I wasn't ready to jump back in the saddle just yet. I needed to be able to be myself again.

A few months later, after the infamous Subway Incident (where I finally felt the urge to hop back into the aforementioned saddle again - it was the first time someone really caught my eye since the breakup, so much so that I couldn't remember my order), I decided to see what the whole internet dating thing was about, since communicating with three dimensional women wasn't panning out for me (as was evidenced again by the Subway Incident, wherein I couldn't bring myself to talk to the woman that had caught my attention - in part because, for a few minutes, I'd completely lost my grasp of the English language). I tried a few sites & got nibbles here & there, but, with the exception of one date, nothing happened. Everyone was either too far away or had baggage or had both eyes growing on stalks out of one side of their face or something weird like that. So, in May of last year, I decided to say goodbye to the world of lonely internet users.

As I was leaving the site I had been on, I sent a few emails to some of the ladies that had viewed my profile in a last ditch effort to get a bite. I had a rule on these sites that I never clicked on someone who didn't have a picture in their profile. Even though I knew that people put deceptive photos on these things (I knew someone who'd gone to meet a woman, only to find out that she'd put a picture of her much, much better looking sister on her profile), I still figured that there was a decent chance that the person in the picture was the person I would be writing to. So, I went through the profiles & came to one that didn't have a photo. I don't know why, but I felt compelled to open her profile & see what she was all about.

She stated that she was just looking for a pen pal kinda thing, nothing serious. I figured "What the heck? Can't hurt to have someone to correspond with." Besides, she was in Arkansas - nothing could come of that, right? So, I sent her a very stiff email (I'm horrible at introductions) saying that if she wanted to write back, that'd be nice, blah, blah, blahdity blah.

To my surprise, she wrote back. She told me about herself & where she was from & schtuff like that. Her style of writing was a lot like mine, so it was very easy & natural writing to her. I asked her for a pic, so I'd at least have a face to go along with the written words.

That was when I began to be hooked. I'd look at her picture as I wrote to her. I'd wonder about her, what she was like, what she sounded like. One weekend, she told me that she was going to be gone & not have access to a computer. I knew something was up with me then because I actually missed her that weekend. This person that I'd only written to, that I'd only "known" for a little more than a month - I missed tremendously. I checked my email all the time that weekend in hopes that she'd gotten home early or used her brother's computer or stopped by a Radio Shack & used one of their displays to send me a message. When she got home, I was a little afraid that my emerging feelings would start showing through in my writing. I had to be careful with what I said to her.

Soon after that, we started instant messaging each other (is this a 21st Century love story or what?). Being able to communicate in roughly realtime, we found out that we had a lot in common, including a quick wit. We IM'd almost everyday.

At the beginning of July, we decided to take the next step & actually talk on the phone. What was going to be a short conversation, as she had to go somewhere that evening, turned into a two hour talkfest that I don't think either of us wanted to end.

By this time, I knew I was falling hard for her, Loyal Readers. We talked everyday with the exception of one & that was one long day. In fact, that's the only day we haven't talked to each other since that first call in July of '03. Many of those calls would start in the late evening & go on until the morning. One night, we started talking at about 8p my time. By the time we hung up, we had both seen the sun rise on a new day (thank goodness for unlimited long distance packages) in our respective timezones.

Finally, during one of our late night/into the wee hours of the morning phone calls, we told each other how we felt. Much to my pleasant surprise, she felt the same for me as I did her. I knew then that I wanted to marry her. I wanted no one else. I needed no other woman.

I have all I need in her. I have been blessed beyond measure by having her in my life.

I love you, Beautiful, with all my heart, soul & spirit.

Monday, September 13, 2004

Geek Out!

I've geeked out twice this month. Big time. Allow me to elaborate.

As you read over Labor Day weekend, one of T's friends from Arkansas came out to visit. While she was here, she wanted to see Hollywood & Beverly Hills & all that. I hadn't been there for awhile & found that they'd really cleaned up Hollywood Blvd. & Sunset. Lots of touristy type places to go to.

Just outside Grumman's Chinese Theatre, there were actors walking around for photo ops. One guy was dressed in a ratty looking Spider-Man outfit, a couple of people were dressed as Michael Myers from "Halloween" & Jason from "Friday The 13th." There was even a woman dressed up like a dominatrix/cop kinda thing. Come to think of it, she may not have been an actor.

Anyway, we're walking down the street & what to my wandering eyes should appear but -

a man dressed in Stormtrooper armor.

I just about lost it right there, Loyal Readers. It was all I could do to keep myself from jumping up & down. The photo op cost a dollar & I had my greenback in hand, waving it like a middle-aged woman at a Chippendale's show. I finally got my turn to get a picture & instead of saying something relatively witty & completely geeky, all that fell out of my mouth was "Duuuuh..." & probably some drool.

Incriminating pix are soon to come.

As if me geeking out over a guy dressed as a Stormtrooper wasn't enough of a clue, T got to see just how big of a Star Wars geek she married last night. I saw the commercials for the Star Wars DVD release next week (only eight more days!). I must've looked like a kid a week before Chirstmas, shaking & foaming at the mouth. Or a thirty-two year old man who seriously needs to get out more often.

Do you have any idea how hard it is to keep a straight face while kissing your wife & having the song from the cantina scene in Star Wars going through your head?
We'll Discuss It?

There's been a little upheaval in my office. Blonde In The Corner has left for (hopefully) greener pastures.

I can't imagine that there's anyplace with greener pastures than the Company. /sarcasm

Anyway, her departure has left an open corner desk in the office. A desk that I would like to scoot over to. A desk that I'll have to wait to scoot over to because, when I expressed that I'd like to move over there & out from in front of the sliding door, I was told that "We'll discuss this next week."


What is there to discuss? It's a four foot move to my left. You call up the telcom & systems departments & ask them to switch my phone line & data port over & - voila! - I have moved. Everyone can still call & email & annoy the crap out of me. I'll just have a different wall to scream & shoot rubberbands at.

Because of this, I thought I was special until another co-worker informed me that it took almost a month to move his desk from out on the floor to a vacant office. A month, Loyal Readers! A month to move to an office thirty feet away from his old desk. A month for the management to grant him approval to move his computer, phone & five pictures.

All that I've ever been required to do in order to move to another desk in every other office I've been in with this company is to find a box. Oh, & move my chair to the other desk. That's it. All done. Back to work. No discussing necessary.

But, everything in this department must be made as difficult as possible. I think there must be something in the policies & procedures that states how many flaming hoops must be jumped through in order to do anything. Call in late - two flaming hoops. Switch lunches - seven flaming hoops. Call in sick - eighteen flaming hoops, blindfolded, plus be dragged across carpet tacks & then dipped in alcohol. You get the idea.

I came to the realization a long time ago that the Boss Of My Boss (BOMB) has nothing better to do with her time than to micromanage every aspect of our time here & to enforce every...single...rule...& regulation that she can find. Of course, this doesn't stop her from being out of the office most of the day doing who know's what. But, she's got her reasons, I'm sure. Maybe she's finding other amusing ways to torment us. Jalapeno enemas, perhaps?

Better not give 'em any ideas.

Sunday, September 12, 2004

The Score So Far...

Clown Car Starter - 1

Jay - 0

Round two begins tomorrow.

Saturday, September 11, 2004

Never Forget

To the families of those lost three years ago, we will never forget.

To the police, firefighters, medics & soldiers who are out on the frontlines, we thank you.

Thank you all.

Saturday, September 04, 2004

This being a holiday weekend, many-many-many folks are out doing holiday things such as camping and fishing and picnicking, taking part in community productions, reenactments, bonfires, beer-drinking and belly-scratching, etc., etc., yadda-yadda-yadda.

Most people will continue doing such come Monday, because Monday is the holiday, and when there is a holiday one must do things such a camp and fish and picnic, take part in community productions, reenactments, bonfires, beer-drinking and belly-scratching, and they mourn the loss of their holiday weekend o'plenty come Tuesday morning when it's time to shimmy back into the work clothes and actually earn the money they were busy spending on camping gear, fish-bait, picnic baskets, costumes, faux ammo, lighter fluid and beer. (To the best of my knowledge belly-scratching is still free.) (Unless you're in WeHo.) Except for me.

Because I am the sole payroll person for my company, a company with 750+ steady employees with a 150% turnover in any given year, I have to make sure that my holidaying employees still get paid on time. Because this week upcoming is a payroll week, I have to make sure that I do my job in order to get them paid on time, and because my payroll schedule does not care that I would much rather be doing anything but working on a holiday weekend, I will be working this holiday weekend. More precisely, I will be putting in five hours on Sunday and at least five to eight hours on Monday in order to ensure that we all have our checks on our regularly scheduled Friday payday.

Most people feel sad for me when this happens. Some of them even feel guilty to know that they are out partying while I'm slaving away to make their lives that much easier. A precious few will lift a bottle and give a great belch in salute to my hard-working nature. I like it when that happens. But you know what? I like these working holidays.

Don't get me wrong - missing out while the nation is at play can be a real bummer. However, my job tends to involve a lot of extraneous schtuff that makes it difficult to accomplish things on a timely basis. My weekends of work? Those days I come in when no one else is around? I live for those days.

Think about it: no one is there to walk into your office and demand immediate attention; no one is calling you on the phone demanding immediate attention; no one is even contemplating adding new duties to the roster throughout the day just when you begin to make progress on your hefty list of things to do. On my holiday work days? I get more accomplished in a five hour span of time than I can reasonably expect to accomplish in two days of a regular business work week on a same-task basis.

So don't cry for me, Argentina. The girl is all right. And this girl? This girl is not giving up her holiday. Oh no-no-no! This girl is taking Friday off instead. She is going to sleep in! She is going to lunch at a fancy restaurant in a sweatshirt and jeans! She is going to watch Garden State and find out the truth about the manatees! And this girl?

This girl is going to call all of her co-workers from bed, from in front of her computer, from the restaurant and from the movie theatre (before the movie starts, of course!) just to rub it in, the fact that they have to work and she? She is so totally enjoying her three day holiday weekend!

And, before I forget, Jay: Guess who is going to be one of the celebrities in the newest incarnation of The Surreal Life?

Yeah, I thought you'd be pleased!

(Posted by ETS)

Friday, September 03, 2004

Dear Jay's Mom:

I know that I am supposed to be blogging about interesting or bizarre things in Jay's absence, but I wanted to take a minute to tell you how cool I think it is that you read Jay's blog.

My mother doesn't read my blog. She knows that I have one but, having known me for all of my life, she says that she's afraid to read whatever I might happen to write. She then goes on to say that she thinks it's weird and she doesn't understand why this medium appeals to me.

This saddens me sometimes because I'd really like to share certain posts with my mother. (Not recent ones, of course. They seem to have lots of references to sweet manatee love in them, which is actually why you probably shouldn't hurry on over there anytime soon, either. Give me a few days to get the idea of naughty manatees out of my head, clear the front page of anything even remotely to do with manatees, then maybe you could visit.) The point is, I have fun with my writing, and I think my mother might have fun with it, too.

But she won't. She thinks I'm weird and she doesn't want to know about it. (And when one stops to think that there is an actual thread running through this week's postings that has to do with the mating habits of "sea-cows," one almost has to -reluctantly- admit that my mother may very well have a point.) Dang it.

So, yes, before I dove head-first into the next interesting post that I was going to put together for Jay while he and T and T's friend are out gallivanting, I wanted to tell you that I think you rock for supporting your boy in this regard.

Plus I'm procrastinating.

I hope you're having a delightful day!


(Guest-Post by ETS)
Scarce This Weekend

A friend of T's is flying in tonight & spending the weekend. So, since we'll be showing her around the place (& south of the border - Yi! Yi! Yi!), I've handed the keys to the place over to ETS.

I'll be back soon to regale you with stories galore.

Wednesday, September 01, 2004

Clown Car Blues

My wee little clown car that I got last year is broken. Well, more to the point, the starter is broken. It won't start. It has gone on to meet it's maker. It is an ex-starter. So, in an attempt to avoid the $65 per hour labor charge to have it replaced, T & I decided that I will change it out myself. I attempted to remove the deceased part last night.

This is when I found out that the good people at Honda have a great sense of humor. They just loves the practical jokes. How did I discover this, you ask?

Because the people who designed the engine made the starter AS FREAKIN' INACCESSIBLE AS POSSIBLE!!!

Oh, I can see the starter. It's sitting in there, it's carcass teasing me beneath a mess of tubes & wires. I just can't get to it without removing said mess of tubes & wires. Nor can I get any tools in to remove the bolts. Apparently, the engine compartment was designed so that only four-year-olds can get their hands in to do any work.

Ha ha, Honda. Reeeally funny. Freakin' hilarious.

So, this Labor Day, I will be attempting to save a little on labor costs by laboring myself over the car. And cursing Soichiro Honda every minute.

Lousy clown car.

Sunday, August 29, 2004

One Less Stop For The Great Pumpkin

I'm writing this at 2a, so please excuse the typos. I'll fix 'em later.

You may ask "Why is this freak posting & not in bed?" Well, according to this article, my beloved pumpkin patch may be no more in the near future.

And, it's made me sad.

One day, I'll take my children shopping there & as we walk across the cold tile floor, under the acoustical ceiling & security camera pods, feeling & smelling the cold recirculated air conditioning & being bathed in flourescent light, I'll tell the kids that once upon a time, I used to go there & feel the earth beneath my feet, walk under the deep blue sky, smell the hay & dust & feel the warm sunlight on my skin. I'll point out to them where the haybale castle used to stand; where the ponyrides & the kettle corn stand & the scarecrow used to be. I might even be able to pick out a few places where The Boy & I would find animal tracks & guess at what animal left them as we followed the prints to some half-eaten gourd. I'll show them where we used to stand & throw rocks into the creekbed below.

I'll tell them about coming to the patch after Halloween, when all of the Christmas trees were readied for sale. I'll reminisce about the smell of the fresh cut trees & cinnamon & cider on cool autumn nights. Even though we never bought a tree there (the mess coupled with the fact that I tend to leave the artificial tree up until February makes it an unappealing proposition), there was a certain something about just going & looking at & smelling the trees.

The opening of the patch is the one thing that I look forward to every year. It means that fall has finally arrived. The nights will start earlier, the temperature will start cooling - well, in a month or so. It means Halloween is just around the corner, & with it an abundance of ghost stories about Headless Hessians & other goblins & creepy crawlies that go bump in the night. It means looking forward to & wondering what the theme for the annual haunted house in the graphics department at work - one of the only times that I enjoy being at the place - will be. And soon after that, Thanksgiving & Christmas, being with family & stuffing myself silly with pumpkin pie &, for a short time at least, having that feeling that peace on Earth & goodwill toward men is an actual possibility.

You see, Loyal Readers, the pumpkin patch isn't just a physical place. It's another milemarker in my life. It's something to look forward to. It's a place where my memories live &, I hope for a little while longer, a few more will be made.

I'll mourn the day when all that's left of it are just memories. A story to be passed on to my children as we shop.

Wednesday, August 25, 2004

Dumb, Dumb, Dumb

I had to go demo some work I've been doing. Having just eaten a sandwich, my breath was not quite smelling springtime fresh. So, since I don't like chewing gum, I opted for a mint. Neither Blonde In the Corner nor Irene had any, so, my only option was one of the peppermints that we have in abundance in the office. But, I didn't want to be chomping on it while dazzling my boss with the demo. Furthermore, I didn't want that gooey feeling that one gets in their mouth after eating candy. So, I decided to try to break it into a smaller piece.

Being a male of the species, & one that has, in the past, used his fists to break apart blocks of frozen cheese & meat, I proceeded to try to break the peppermint by smashing it with my hand. Repeatedly.

This resulted in me bruising the side of my hand to the point where it was hard to type.

And the real kicker to this story?

I ended up eating the stupid peppermint whole anyway.

Lousy candy.

Tuesday, August 24, 2004

Mini Reviews

I had meant to write this up a couple of weeks ago, after I'd watched the videos & had lines & scenes & whatnot fresh in my noggin'. But, since I am the President of the Procrastinators of America, Southern California chapter, you're getting this review now.

Now, on with the, reviews.

First up at the McUnoPlex -

Mystic River

First & foremost, do not watch this movie if you are severely depressed or on the edge of a breakdown. This is an extremely bleak, gloomy movie. Of course, being a Sean Penn movie, what'd you expect?

The movie revolves around three childhood friends (the aforementioned Mr. Penn, Kevin Bacon & Tim Robbins, who, I didn't realize, is a freakin' huge individual) who drift apart as they grow older, only to be brought together by a murder. I can't really go too much into the movie without giving anything away. All in all, not a bad movie. F-bombs a'plenty are liberally dropped throughout, because, apparently, ev-er-y-one in Boston talks like that. No nudidity & the violence is relatively tame.

I recommend seeing this movie, but only after something really great has happened & you need to balance out your euphoria because, as I said above, this is a depressing movie. Good, but depressing.

Next up -

Bubba Ho-Tep

This is a movie about Elvis, a black JFK & a soul-sucking mummy, set in a rest home.

This is quite possibly the greatest movie premise ever, Loyal Readers.

This type of movie is also one of the few areas where T & I have a divergence of opinion. She's more of a thriller/mystery/chick flick type. Me? Cheese all the way, baby! But, she allows me to feed my need for cheesey movies & I allow her to decorate the house however she likes. It works for both of us.

The movie takes place, as previously stated, in a rest home in Texas, where Elvis (B-Movie Lord & Master Bruce Campbell) - that apparently wasn't the real King keeled over in the throneroom - a black man (Ossie Davis) who claims to be JFK - one is never sure if he really is the former President or not - & a gaggle of other, colorful elderly residents reside. And a mummy - that Elvis calls Bubba Ho-Tep - lurks.

Hijinks ensue as the King & the Prez set out to destroy the Stetson & Tony Llama bedecked undead soul-eater.

I highly recommend this movie if you are into cheese, Bruce Campbell, mummies & have ever wondered what Elvis would've looked like in his later years. A few F-Bombs here & there, as well as a few other colorful phrases, a bitty bit o' nudidity & a couple of suggestive scenes make this a movie aimed at adults. Get the kiddies the director's cuts of Finding Nemo (where, as in every director's cut, everyone dies) or Bambi (where everyone, including Bambi's mom, also dies) instead.

And now, after awhile spent in mothballs, time to break out the eyeball rating system, five being best, one being, well, you get the picture.

Mystic River 3/5 Eyeballs

Bubba Ho-Tep 4/5 Eyeballs

Friday, August 20, 2004

Okay... probably wasn't the most Christian thing to do, but yesterday at work, Evil T came into the office trying to get a few bucks to buy cake & ice cream for the department admin's birthday. Normally, I have no problem tossing a peso or two into the hat for birthdays, whether or not I particularly like the person. But this person has never, in the whole year & a half that I've been in the cornfield, been nice. I gave up saying "Good Morning" or "Hello" to her because she, not once, ever acknowledged the greeting. I've tried being nice to her, but to no avail. I mean, I'm not looking to get into some deep theological discussion with the woman, but is it really too hard to say "Hi"? It's two freakin' letters long. How difficult is that?

So, she & Evil T can enjoy their little b-day celebration on their own.

For once, I'd rather be at my desk.

Friday, August 13, 2004

Man The Lifeboats!

Well, we made it through our first summer storm of the past five years or so. Lots of rain & hail & thunder & lightning.

And I loves it!

Living in the deserts of So Cal, we don't see much of the wet schtuff. At all. A little to the east - thunder storms every year. Big, nasty ones. In the High Desert & mountains - a few summer storms per year. But down in the valley we get passed over.

I imagine that the local TV news teams were all out & about in their slickers, reporting on STORMWATCH 2004! or some such hysterically titled nonsense. If we get so much as three non-consecutive raindrops over the course of a week, the reporters start telling everyone to break out the rubber rafts, get their snorkeling gear on, start gathering up animals two by two & kiss it all goodbye, because we're gonna wash away, people!. That is quickly followed by the vacuous blonde anchortwit asking the weatherboob "When is all this rain going to end? I mean, I haven't seen the sun in, like, three & a half minutes! Tee hee hee!" Fifteen minutes later, when it's one hundred eleventy bajillion degrees out, they're asking when the heatwave is going to end.

And to think - these people went to college.


Wednesday, August 11, 2004

Forever & Ever Amen

I came home tonight & could smell T's perfume. Everywhere I go in the apartment I see little touches here & there that remind me of her. It makes me miss her when she has to work at night.

And it makes it all that much better when she gets home.

I love you, Beautiful.

Forever & Ever Amen - Randy Travis

You may think that I'm talking foolish
You've heard that I'm wild & I'm free
You may wonder how I can promise you now
This love that I feel for you always will be
You're not just time that I'm killing
I'm no longer one of those guys
As sure as I live this love that I give
Is gonna be yours until the day that I die -- Oh baby

I'm gonna love you forever, forever & ever amen
As long as old men sit & talk about the weather
As long as old women sit & talk about old men
If you wonder how long I'll be faithful
I'll be happy to tell you again
I'm gonna love you forever & ever, forever & ever Amen

They say that time takes it's toll on a body
Makes a young girl's brown hair turn grey
But honey, I don't care, I ain't in love with your hair
And if it all fell out well I'd love you anyway
They say time can play tricks on a memory
Make people forget things they knew
Well it's easy to see it's happening to me
I've already forgotten every woman but you --- Oh darlin'

I'm gonna love you forever, forever & ever amen
As long as old men sit & talk about the weather
As long as old women sit & talk about old men
If you wonder how long I'll be faithful
Just listen to how this song ends
I'm gonna love you forever & ever, forever & ever
Forever & ever, Forever & ever Amen
Herb the Fish

Herb's not doing well.

About a year ago, Irene brought in a fish in a vase with a plant growing out of it. Just one of those little betta fish - the Siamese Fighting fish. I named him Herb. He's been a source of much amusment, as bettas flair out their gills when they get mad. And they don't like bright colors. Or me, apparently.

And Herb gets mad. A lot.

But, ol' Herb's not looking so well anymore. A little green around the gills, if you will. He doesn't swim much anymore, except to occasionally show everyone that he's not dead yet. And then he promptly sinks to the botton of the vase. And leans to his side.

Poor Herb.

First Rick James, then Faye Wray & now, it seems Herb the Fish will be going to that big fishtank in the sky.
What does it mean when you stop sweating?

It is abso-freakin'-lutely hot outside.

And I went for a walk after lunch.

And I walked further than I usually do.

Cripes, I'm an idiot sometimes.

Tuesday, August 10, 2004

New Reader

A big "Hello" & a cookie, to boot, to my little sister, who recently joined the twenty first century & got a computer.

Welcome to the 'net!

I'll think up an amusing name for you on the site later.
Border Run

This is not being written from a Mexican jail, nor am I being held by the Border Patrol for smuggling midget wrestlers into the country. We made it back safe & sound. Thanks, ETS, for watchin' the place.

T & I had decided to go south of the border to celebrate her birthday. Actually, the festivities had started on Friday night with dinner prepared by moi - no, it was not macaroni & cheese - & a dessert of crepes, also prepared by yours truly. The apartment was subtley lit with candles & lanterns & looked pretty nifty. And, the food ended up being edible, which was a plus.

We left for Mexico late Saturday morning, originally looking to get a hotel room in Rosarito (about twelve miles past the border), but couldn't arrange any reservations before the trip. Since we didn't want to get there & then end up having to settle for a roach motel, we opted to find a room in San Diego & then take a coach on down.

We made it about ten miles from the border before finding a room. And spent an hour trying to do that.

After touring Imperial Beach trying to find a place, we then decided to go to Tijuana (T had never been there) on Saturday & then on down to Rosarito on Sunday. We made it to TJ about 3p & were met with a mix of oppressive heat, rancid odors & a ton of vendors, ready to sell us anything from necklaces to pharmaceuticals to lap dances.

One walk down one side of Revolution Blvd through all that was enough fun for us. We had lunch (& survived!) & headed back after a couple hours, laden with the fruits of our bartering & haggling.

It was after we got back that we realized that another trip down was going to leave us extremely short of funds. We chose to putz around San Diego on Sunday & then head for home. That night we went down to the beach & watched the sunset while walking through the surf & collectiong shells. It was gorgeous out there. And I had T by my side, which made it that much better.

We found a church in Imperial Beach the night before & made plans to visit it Sunday. When we got there in the morning, it became apparent that the place wasn't going to be packed. T jokingly commented that there would be fifteen to twenty people there.

Counting us, there were nine people. Yes, nine.

This was also quite possibly the world's longest, slowest sermon. Ever. The other seven members were very nice, but the pastor had a very monotone voice that threatened to put T & I into a coma. He kept referencing the "visitors," which made us kinda stand out a bit. Then came Communinon. With what appeared to be real wine.

Or reeeeeally old grape juice. And given the size of the congregation, it didn't seem that they'd be replenishing the juice & wafers too often, so it's quite possible.

After that, we made our way to San Diego & strolled around Horton Plaza for a bit. The Plaza, for those that don't know, is a huge, four or five story open air mall. Every manner of store can be found there. It's like TJ with set prices.

After all that we made our way back on home, with stories to tell about being harrassed nearly to death, a baja blanket & a few sea shells. We plan on trying to actually make it to Rosarito next time. It's supposed to be nicer than TJ, which isn't hard to do. My closet is a nicer place than TJ.

Smells better, too.

Saturday, August 07, 2004

Due to circumstances beyond my control, I became the proud recipient of a beautiful, sparkling shiny golden crown this past Thursday.

When I sent out the e-mail to my immediate co-workers and supervisor(s) that I was leaving to fetch my crown and that I would not return for the day, I received a flurry of e-mails, all of the smart-assed variety: "I thought you were a goddess, not a queen!" "Did I miss the Miss America Pageant on TV last night?" "Oh! I forgot to bring in my tiara - we could have been twinsies!"

I replied: "Can't I be both?" "Yes!" and "Yes!"

That's me, Miss Goddess-Queen America.

The funny thing about it all? Yesterday I had lunch with a friend, eating the same manner of food that I was eating when I broke the tooth that required this gold crown, and I ... broke another tooth, same region - in fact, the upper plate equivalent of the one just crowned.

We won't know until next week whether I'll need another crown on it, but if I do? I'll not only be the first woman in my department to be crowned Miss Goddess-Queen America, I'll hold the title twice.

(Guest-posted by ETS because your illustrious host and his lovely wife have made a run for the border, not to return until Sunday at the latest. Or so I'm told....)

Tuesday, August 03, 2004

"Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free"

The Statue of Liberty is reopened.

Welcome back, m'lady.

Saturday, July 31, 2004



Helped friend move...180 zillion degrees out...can't feel feet.

Must sleep now.


Friday, July 30, 2004

After Lunch Walkies

I was going to rant a bit about the ex & the crap that she decided to pull this morning, but, I'm now in a fairly decent mood & don't feel like spewing any venom right now.

Maybe in a few minutes, just not right now.

Anyway, as I announced over at Amy's site last weekend, I'm taking yet another stab at exercising. I had mentioned that I was going to start running again. So far, that hasn't happened. I'm already tired enough in the morning. I don't want to add more to that. And it's been about a hundred & eleventy bajillion degrees outside even in the evening. And, more to the point, when it comes to exercising - I'm a lazy, lazy man.

One thing I have implemented, though, is using the last half hour of my lunch to go for a walk. Nothing major. Just a walk down the street & back, about 3/4 of a mile or so (baby steps, steps). It's a nice walk. Although I work in an industrial area, a good half of the area that I walk in is an undeveloped field. Most of the walkway is either in the street or the dirt. But, it's pretty quiet &, when they aren't shrouded behind a cloak of smog, the entire mountain range that borders the north end of the valley can be seen. Planes can also be seen, landing at the old Norton AFB, where I was stationed during my enlistment.

The walks not only stretch my legs, though. They also open up my mind, my memories. The walks take me back in time, to when I was growing up. At that time, I either walked everywhere (Rialto, my hometown, is not that big) or rode my bike. I didn't have a license until I was almost eighteen & I didn't get a car until I was almost nineteen.

You notice a lot more when you walk or ride a bike - sights, sounds & scents that you don't experience as they are filtered out through the a/c of a car. As I walk along the fields, the smell of the mustard plants & sage bushes & even the dirt makes me feel like I'm fifteen again, without a care in the world. The feel of the silty sand beneath my shoes & the crunchy sound that the pebbles make underfoot remind me of good times long since past.

There's a flood control canal along the walk, not unlike the ones that I used to play in & ride my bike through. It's always got water running through it & everyday I stop by it on both legs of my little mosey. I notice more & more animals every time I stop. On the east side, it's very serene & quiet. The water flows gently under the street. On this side, pollywogs & dragonflies of every color can be found. Today as I approached, a duck was swimming along & took off right when I got to the bridge. The pollywogs were nowhere to be found, but there were still the aforementioned dragonflies (one in particular, a gigantic orange one, looked to be the size of a helicopter) & some form of underwater bug that I'd never seen before. I thought maybe the tadpoles had lost their tails overnight & sprouted their legs, but I noticed that the critters had six legs, thus nixing the idea that they were frogs.

Unless they were mutant frogs. I dunno.

Anyway, these things were grey & about two & a half inches long. Maybe a bit bigger, maybe a bit smaller. All I know is that from about twelve feet above the water, these things were huge.

On the other side of the canal, the water flows over some rocks, a folding chair & a shopping cart & is a bit choppy. There one can find more of the monster dragonflies &, on occasion, more tadpoles. Birds of varying sorts flit about the reeds & marsh grass that grows there. Lizards &, I found out today, squirrels, frequent the creek, too. Or, rather, a squirrel, as I only saw one. It was big, though. Perhaps it ate the rest of the squirrels.

The rushing of the water over the rocks & the shopping cart have a claming effect that is only somewhat disrupted by the cars that occasionally go past, reminding me that I'm not on the banks of some lazily flowing stream, but rather that I'm standing in the street, looking over a drainage ditch with a purple .99 Cent Store cart in it & that I only have a short amount of time before I have to go back into the dungeon that I call my office. I take a swig of my water &, with great reluctance, pull myself from the past & head back to the office. When I get back to my desk, I look down at my shoes, all covered in fine, brown dirt.

It's a reminder that, for a little bit at least, I felt like I was back in time, back home again.

Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Bad Combination

I'm at work. I'm bored. And -

I have a laser on my desk.

Well, not a deathray type laser. Not yet, at least.

Here's my list of things I can do to amuse myself with my desk laser:

1. Make the aforementioned deathray & become Overlord of the Warehouse!
2. Point it at myself in an attempt to gain superpowers (because, as any comicbook reader knows, 75% of all superheroes & villains received their powers due to workplace accidents).
3. Open my own laser eye surgery clinic.
4. Actually use it for work related purposes (Hahahahahahaaaaa! Just kidding!).
5. Test the laser's range & effect on the human eye by pointing it at people out on the floor.
6. Point it at peoples foreheads & quote lines from the Terminator movies.
7. Whenever someone enters the office, whip around, point the laser at them & say "Set phasers for stun!"
8. Recreate a RUSH concert using various figurines from my coworkers desks.
9. Pretend I'm the Death Star, pointing the laser at the map on my wall while making my little Star Wars toy ships fly around, trying to destroy me.
10. Wave it around the room, making lightsaber noises.

Sunday, July 25, 2004

File under "Wha...?"

Read this comment exchange between ETS & I from the previous post. If you've left comments on this site or any other site that uses Haloscan's fine commenting service, you know that there are little adds for things & blogs related to the topics of the comments.

Imagine my surprise to find out a link to this.

Geeks of the world, rejoice!

Lucas reveals the name of Episode III.

The Star Wars geek in me is so doing the Happy Dance!
Uh...bummer, I guess?

Imagine my suprise & indifference when I saw this headline:

Paris & Nick Split -- A Nation Mourns

My surprise was that I didn't even know that they were an item. My indifference stems from the fact that, even if I had known, I really wouldn't have cared.
Guest Posting

Whilst Amy's away playing in Sin City, she's once again graciously opened the doors of Bad Groove to us.

And, yes, I realize that I haven't posted here in awhile. So why am I posting at someone else' site, you ask?

Because I'm just a giving kinda guy.

Go over &, of course, cookies all around!

Monday, July 19, 2004

Confession time

I can't deny it anymore - I've become hooked on Big & Rich's "Save A Horse (Ride A Cowboy)."

I tried to fight it. Honest, I did. But it was just...too...catchy.

I feel so...dirty. I need a shower.
Funniest thing I heard this morning...

Governor Ah-nuld calling the state's Democratic lawmakers "girlie men."

It's only a matter of time before he's putting them in headlocks & dishing out noogies.

Then politics will finally be interesting!

Sunday, July 18, 2004

I've been having a lot of dreams about being in the house I grew up in or involving family members that have passed on.  Especially my dad.
*sigh*  I really do miss you, Dad.

Saturday, July 17, 2004

More pix

Another one of T's pix from her first trip out here. She had never seen a Joshua Tree (as they only grow in the deserts of California, Nevada & Arizona) & wanted to show the folks back in lush, green Arkansas just how desolate her new home in SoCal would be.
Personally, I kind of likes the poor thing. Posted by Hello

Seems the new BloggerBot feature works

This is a pic that T took on her first trip out here last November of the desert nearby. Posted by Hello

Thursday, July 15, 2004

Spidey 2:Electric Boogaloo
Alright, I've sat myself down, switched off Civilization III for a bit (freakin' addictive game) &, while it's fresh in my noggin', will give you my own itty bitty review of the newest Spider-Man movie.

Let me preface this by saying that I collected comic books while growing up & that Spider-Man was probably my favorite hero (or at least tied with Batman).  Because of this & the frightening amount of comic lore from up to the early 90's that I still have knockin' around in my brain, I am frequently disappointed with superhero movies.  I have been called a purist & I wear that badge with honor.  I mean, it shouldn't be too hard to make a faithful superhero movie.  The source material is right there, people!  There's no need to use artistic license.  It's like taking the story of Moses from the Bible & making him younger & an eloquent, non-stuttering speaker & - oh, wait...that'd be "Prince of Egypt."
Anyway, now that that's out of the way, on to our featured presentation:

Spider-Man 2:Attack of the Tentacles

If I were to sum the movie up in one line, it'd be something along the lines of "OH MY FREAKIN' STARS & GARTERS - THIS MOVIE ROCKS BEYOND ALL COMPREHENSION!"
Now, if I were to bind the comic fanboy inside of me & lock him away in a vault somewhere, the line that I'd use to describe this movie would be "OH MY FREAKIN' STARS & GARTERS - THIS MOVIE ROCKS BEYOND ALL COMPREHENSION!"
It just rocks.  That.  Much.
And, since I don't want to ruin it for anyone who hasn't seen it, I won't say anything more about it.  Because if I do, I will tell all sorts of things about it & probably tell you all about the ending & then you'd be reeeeeally unhappy with me for that.  Really.  I know you would.
So, my final words on the movie - go out.  See it now.  Go.  Get.
Now, about that pants pocket quandry...

Saturday, July 10, 2004

Spiders & multiple pockets...

I haven't died or gotten lost or forgotten how to type. It's been a freakin' busy week at work & since that's when I do most of my writing, er...working, I haven't been able to crank out my usual amount of wit, fun & written frivolity.

On my plate for writing right now - a review of Spidey 2:Electric Boogaloo & an answer to ETS' eternal question: Why do boys pants have so many frickin' pockets?

Inquiring minds want to know...

Monday, July 05, 2004

July Fifth...

...All fingers, limbs & both eyes present & accounted for.

Hope yours was a great Fourth!

Wednesday, June 30, 2004

In case you haven't noticed...

I really, really, reeeeally can't stand my exwife.