Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Sir Spam-a-lot

Spam! spam! spam! spam!

Hope that Monty Python song is now rattling around in your brain the rest of the day. I know, I'm an ass. I get told that ALL the time!

Anyway, I've been noticing a lot of spam coming into both my work and personal email lately but I can't seem to make heads or tails of most of it. Yeah, I get the usual penis enlargement (they don't work - damn them!) and re-mortgaging emails, but some are complete nonsense. Here is an example of one I got at work.

"And whenever her father spoke of sending impatience, while he waited for his share of the feel as if she was doing you a favor all the while."

What the fuck is this? Am I working for the CIA? Whatever it is they're selling, I ain't buying. And you know why? Because I don't know what it IS they're selling. Let's try to figure it out.

'Impatience' - since it's used with 'sending' maybe it's a flower spam?

'Waited for his share of the feel' - porn site?

'she was doing you a favor all the while' - escort service?

Maybe they're secret terrorist messages. If I can just figure out the key I can prevent the next attack. What I can't figure is how someone can spend all this time sending mass amounts of emails with fake originating addresses, but have nothing to say or sell? Why freakin' bother? There isn't even a link to any other site.

So it appears that there a bunch of live-in-mom's-basement techies out there who are sending gibberish to random email addresses. Nice work, fellas (yeah, I'm betting they're male and have no girlfriends). Not only are you annoying everyone in the known universe, but you're not even getting paid for it. At least link to a site. Make it funny or semi entertaining. Even if it's pure nonsense.

You know, like the lives you're currently leading.



Before we get to today's time waster, I wanted to fill you in on a new project I'm embarking on starting tomorrow. It's rather ambitious, which means there is no way in hell it's going to be successful, but what the fuck, let's give it a go. As you'll soon find out, I'm full of great ideas just lack the follow through and motivation to actually complete anything.

Anyway, yesterday my six year old was weighing himself on our bathroom scale and was excited he is almost 60 pounds now. He says "Dad, let's see how much you weigh". I get on and it read 222. I nearly dropped 5 pounds of shit on the floor right then and there. This is officially the heaviest I've ever been.

Therefore, a new routine is being undertaken. Starting tomorrow, March 1st, I'm going on an all out diet/exercise binge. My goal is to lose 15 pounds by the end of the month. That's right 15 pounds in 31 days. I'll post my weight every other Sunday until we get near the end of the month at which point I'll post it more often. Step one happens tomorrow when I weigh myself on the scale at the gym. One at home is a bit squirrely (say it like Veruca) and tends to change on a hourly basis.

I'll post my starting weight tomorrow. I figure the first 10 pounds will be easy, it's that extra 5 that's going to cause problems.

Wish me luck. I'm going to need it. Actually, wish me some motivation and will power. I'll need that more.

Today's distraction: This also doubles as today's gift. It's an anti-spamming site. You can create a fake email address that forwards to your legitimate one. This way when you sign up for some questionable site, you can use this fake one, then get rid of it later. When the company sells the temporary email address to the spammers your temp address will no longer exist. That will teach them! Fuckers!

http://spambox.us/

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Odds and Updates

Wanted to follow up some of my earlier entries and provide links to things I found interesting. Things just keep happening and I'm having trouble keeping up.

The Orion, that quantum computer chip, had a demonstration for reporters last week. It solved a Soduku puzzle, arranged seating and searched for molecules similar to the drug Prilosec. Yeah, but did it try converting MA4 files to MP3s and surf ESPN.COM while fronting a dummy spreadsheet so people think you're doing real work? Thought not. Wuss computer. But at least your wedding seating will be all set.

Here's the full article from Wired, including what this actually means to us. Summary: they have no idea

http://www.wired.com/news/technology/0,72734-0.html?tw=wn_index_23


Lisa Marie Nowak, our diaper wearing astronaut friend has turned into quite the media celebrity. Good for her. If only she were sane enough to appreciate it. She entered a Not Guilty plea at her arraignment, by the way. Riiigght.

Found this sidewalk chalk artist who is amazing. Check out some of this work here:

http://www.enkidu.cx/stumble/beever/


I got surprisingly little hate mail regarding Asian drivers. This can only mean people have had the same experience as I or nobody is reading this. Could go either way.

My Presidential bid is spinning it's tires. Apparently you need a whole bunch of signatures from actual people to be official. What a load of crap. Instead I'm going with the grass roots campaign and hoping millions of people write me in on the ballot. Too much work going around collecting signatures. Who has time for that?

Oh, and I thought of another item for my platform. I'm mandating nap time for everyone. All employees will be getting a 20 minute nap in the afternoon. I have studies to back me up and everything!! I'll see if I can sneak in a milk and cookies article.

I've used http://www.callthefuture.org/ three times since last week and it's worked every time. I swear these people custom made this site just for me. I don't know them, but I love them like they're my family.

Found two other highly useful sites in my neverending quest to do zero work. The first is for readers only. You enter in a book you enjoyed and it suggests other titles for you.

http://www.whatshallireadnext.com/

The next is for travelers and gives you a full rundown on what planes have the best seats and which to look out for. I'm checking with this site before I choose my seat from now on.

http://www.seatguru.com/


It seems that 'Where you should live' quiz is pointing everyone to Miami. Even if you put in mountain ranges as your view preference. Not sure what's up with that. Still Miami is nice. Just go with it.

Someone told me that the most accurate characteristic for a man's penis size does not involve shoe size or height (as that study concluded). You supposedly have a man spread his fingers out and the distance from the tip of his thumb to the tip of his middle finger should be his penis length. Someone else told me it relates to the thickness of his wrists. I also heard it has to do with whether your maternal grandfather was bald, but we may have been talking about hair loss. I kind of zoned out there for a few minutes.

I attempted making one of those office guns, but couldn't get it to work properly. It shoots, but barely. It's like a misfiring rocket launcher. Just pops out and falls straight down onto my desk. Decided just buying a real gun would be easier and more effective for killing fellow employees.

My men's room etiquette suggestions seem to be having a positive effect. Not many offenders since I posted that. However, I no longer share a bathroom with many of my coworkers as I've moved up one floor. Less traffic in my new one.

Watched some NBA over the weekend and realized why most games are becoming unwatchably dull. Free throws. Nobody can shoot free throws anymore. The easiest shot in the game (It's FREE!!) and highly paid pros can't make them. This leads to every potential dunk or layup turning into a hack job. Why give Ben Wallace or Shaq a dunk when you can wrap them up? Odds are with you they'll miss one of the two, often both. Christ, even LeBron blows.

Teams that I know are going to completely fuck me over in this year's March Madness pools: Georgetown, Syracuse (if they get in), Creighton (if they get in), Michigan State (again!). I actually like Michigan State to do some damage this year. Which, of course, means they'll get knocked out in the second round.

Finally, I wound up with quite a puzzle on my hands last week. While painting my hallway, I realized that I would have to continue down the stairs in order to maintain the color continuity. Fine, right? Nope. See the walls stay up high while the stairs go down (or up depending on which direction you're going). The further down the stairs I got, the higher the walls got. I couldn't reach the highest parts. I was on the stairs, so I couldn't put a step ladder up. I could have put one at the bottom of the stairs and run a plank, but my small ladder was encased in 5 inches of ice (stupid winter) and won't be available for use until July. My solution? Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the Brush Extender 2007 (pictured in all it's glory below). I have patented the invention and will be taking orders. Cost is $150 plus shipping and handling. There is no money back guarantee.



















Today's distraction: Let out your inner 8 year old artist. Consider this your approved time to regress to a simpler age before dating, working, drinking and drugging. Wait, scratch those last two.

http://www.etchy.org/

Monday, February 26, 2007

Putrification

There are certain things I'm beginning to notice as I approach 40. The most noticeable and problematic are that injuries aren't healing as quickly as they used to. When I was in high school, I sprained my ankle in practice. It was a bad one, too. I was back playing within a week. Piece of cake.

These days I throw my back out picking up a wrapper off the floor and it takes me a week just so I can sleep normally again. My buddy who just turned 40 last month spent the last three weeks visiting a chiropractor because he aggravated his sciatic nerve. He was so bad, his hips were actually thrown out of alignment. He was also diagnosed with arthritis in his some of this vertebrae. Did he do this lifting something heavy? Working out at the gym? Having vigorous sex with his girl? No, he did it bending down to put in a DVD. I will quote him "Our player is under the set so I bent down and heard a pop. Next thing I know I'm face down on the floor in more pain I've ever felt in my life. I actually cried!"

Then there is the family. Christmas Eve was spent in the hospital because my mother had a minor stroke. She's over 70 now and, as I told my wife, we better get used to these calls because they'll be coming more frequently. My father is 75 and in fairly good health, but we all wonder what will happen to him if my mother dies first. They've already had the talk with us about their will and revive wishes should it come to that. Real upbeat dinner talk.

Aging! Good times! I caught a cold about 3 weeks ago and still have some residual effects from it. (Will share another theory I have about that later). I notice if I'm on my feet too long my lower back stiffens. The pinkie I have broken multiple times aches when it gets cold. With every hair cut I get my forehead gets larger and there is more and more gray on the floor. On Saturday and the woman actually used her buzzers on my ears! MY EARS! Hair is growing in places it never grew before.

Oddly, I have no issue with any of these things. If anything I just laugh, adjust and move on. I'm comfortable with myself and complete lack of any attractive qualities. Turning 40 really has nothing to do with that anyway. What I do have a problem with is this: "When a man turns 35 he must run twice as much to maintain his weight".

Maintain! Not lose. Maintain. A man's metabolism basically cuts in half after 35 years of age. Let's say I run a mile a day (AHAHAHAHAHA, that's funny). After 35, I need to run 2 miles a day just to stay where I am. 3-4 miles to lose weight. So, if I stay at 1 mile a day I'm going to gain weight. What a gyp!

Fortunately I haven't fallen into that whole 'running for exercise' trap. But it still means all the biking, kayaking, and B-ball is just fighting a losing cause. I can't win. I would have to do all those things twice as much and who has the time? I work for a living now. Have kids. A wife tracking me with a GPS device implanted in my left testicle. The time in my life I should be increasing my routine I actually have less time to exercise than ever before.

No wonder George Gervin and Bill Laimbeer weighed a combined 700 pounds at the All Star Weekend. I literally gasped when I saw the Ice Man in his uniform. But what should I expect? The poor guy never stood a chance.

Don't get me wrong, I'll still keep active mainly because I enjoy my recreation. I know it's still good for the heart and gets me out of the house. It also is my explanation for drinking red wine, beer and coffee. It's all good for the heart. The experts say so! I love the experts.

Besides, with my forward thinking I've already used this info to my advantage. Telling wifey that we need to have twice as much sex for me to maintain my manly figure. She hasn't bought it, but I can tell I'm wearing her down.

Soon will be having sex twice a year!!

Today's distraction: Find out the exact day you're going to die! Mine is December 18th, 2039. Which means I'll probably drop when I'm trying to find the perfect Christmas gift for my new 25 year old girlfriend who just happens to be the Playboy Playmate of the Year. Hey, it could happen! Right after I hit the lottery.

http://www.deathclock.com/

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Forever Learning

I like that saying "You learn something new every day". I like it so much I use it whenever I learn something new. Drives people crazy, which adds to the appeal. The exchange usually goes like this:

"Excuse me, but you're not supposed to let your kids put bags over their heads."

"Really? Even if they're butt ugly?"

"No. They could suffocate and die. Don't you see the big warning diagram on the front? It means 'Don't let you kids play with this bag'."

"OH! I thought it was explaining it's uses. Hmmm. Well, what if I just poke some holes in it so he can breathe with it on? He really seems to like it. Look how excited and red his face gets."

"That means he can't breathe."

"Here, let me poke a hole in it with my knife."

"Jesus Christ!! Is that thing legal??!!"

"Sure. I bought it off the internet. Everything's legal off the internet right? Even if they're 'Barely Legal', right? Wink, wink, eh buddy? It supposed to be for hunting, but I've found all sorts of uses for it. You should see how the ladies react to it."

"Shit, man, be careful with that thing!!! Don't put it near the kid's face....oh....JESUS!!"

"There. Seems like he's breathing fine now. Listen to those big, rasping breaths he's taking. That's a good boy!"

"What the fu...."

"Hey, Hey, watch your mouth in front of the boy!"

"I'm calling the police. If your kid is lucky they'll take him away from you!"

"Calm down, man. This isn't even my kid"

"Wha....what do you mean?"

"Just found him in the toy aisle and figured he needed looking after. There was some frantic woman in there looking for her son. Was kind of freaking the little man out so I took him for a walk."

".....are...you insane??!! You can't just take someone else's kid!!"

"You can't?!! Really? Huh. Learn something new every day."

Today's distraction: See how much you've learned in high school geography. The link will take you to a US State test. I scored a 146 out of a possible 150. The only ones I missed were Missouri and Wyoming and let's face it, the people that live in those states probably couldn't find them, either.

http://www.lizardpoint.com/fun/geoquiz/usaquiz.html

Friday, February 23, 2007

Promiscuity

I realize this is a sensitive subject, but breaking taboos is what I'm all about. That and taking great pleasure in making people uncomfortable.

Apparently society has entered a new sexual phase of 'hooking up', a term that could basically mean anything. In my day it was called 'getting laid'. However, I was unlucky enough to spend my college years in the frightful shadow of AIDS. Not the best of times, although many still willingly participated in risky behavior. Myself happily included.

This new term is technically different. It could mean making out. Or it could mean oral sex. Or it could mean fucking the living shit out of each other. It could mean you went fishing together. While the new term is intentionally vague, it all means the same thing. Someone got lucky. Call it whatever you want.

The difference seems to be that our lovely young ladies are more interested in just the sexual aspect of the hookup than any sort of relationship the develops from said encounter. They basically want to be fuck buddies with many of their male friends and often compete with other girl friends to bag as many guys as possible. To which my response was "Sure, NOW this happens!!" I can't shake the feeling I've been gypped.

Of course, since we're living in an alarmist society, everyone is freaked out by this. The girls are 'sluts' and 'putting themselves at risk'. There is even a new term called 'gray rape' in which women feel as responsible for an awkward or unwanted sexual encounter as the male. They think their liberated sexuality and flirtations had as much to do with the sticky situation as the man's actions. While I find this a bit questionable (seems perilously close to 'I was asking for it' mentality) it's their call. I won't argue as long as serial date rapists aren't allowed to continue practicing their despicable hobby.

You can be damn sure there are a lot of parents, so called 'experts' and guys out there cringing at the idea of their daughters and future wives sleeping around with as many guys as possible.

I, for one, think this is a good thing.

First of all, guys participate in this type of behavior all the time. Let's not be hypocritical here, fellas. You wouldn't want your current girlfriend or significant other knowing about certain 'incidents' in your past. Don't think there aren't incidents like that in her past, either. It's the ancient 'double standard' kicking into overdrive. Women shouldn't do what men do. Women should be more selective and demure.

Bullshit! I say women should be as free as any guy. Go out. Have fun. I have three main reasons why:

First: If the lovely ladies didn't act like this, you guys would never get laid. Face it, we're a bunch of idiots. I'm surprised the entire female gender hasn't gone completely lesbian on us. Although, what a show THAT would be! Crap, see? Lesbians enter our heads and we're lost. Even though a majority of lesbians are, let's be frank, repulsive. I say go for it ladies. And don't let the fact I'm married give you pause at all. Shit, was that out loud?

Second: It gives women practice for the real deal. I am aware of most of my wife's sexual past and am perfectly fine with it. She had her share of wild times, but it's all good. You know why? Because I am reaping the benefits. Everything she learned and perfected is now being enjoyed by me. ME!! Suckers!

Lastly, while most of these girls are saying they aren't in it for the romance, a part of them at least is taking stock in what they like and enjoy in a man. By the time they're ready to settle down or get serious they know what qualities they're looking for. Which means, that if they are choosing you it's an informed decision. They know what else is out there. They know what they want. If they're selecting you out of all the other available men, then for fuck's sake, take it as the highest compliment. They could just as easily use you and move on to the next guy (not a bad deal there, either). Something about you has caught and is holding her interest.

Consider it another way: If you wind up getting serious with someone, would you want that someone to know what she likes sexually and knows how to please you at the same time? Or would you want a novice who is learning on the fly? Think of it as a business partnership. Who would you rather go into business with? Someone who has no experience or someone that already knows the ropes?

Besides, if you can keep this great lady (Stay with me. I'm making assumptions) then you should, by extension, feel great about yourself. Nothing feeds a male ego more effectively than knowing you can satisfy a woman both physically and emotionally. Especially when other men have tried and failed.

Their loss is your gain.

Today's distraction: Learn more about women's and your own bodies. Did you know that women blink twice as much as men? Or that your pupils dilate when you look at someone you love AND someone you hate? They don't mention that can often be the same person.

http://crazyfoolish.blogspot.com/2007/02/fact-of-human-body.html

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Addictive Behavior

I never considered myself as having an addictive personality. I can usually take or leave a multitude of things. I enjoy beer, cigars, sex, every once in a while a nice glass of wine, chatting with friends but have never gone over board with any of them. Well, maybe beer, but that's understandable. Beer is yummy! Anyway, something happened on Monday that changed my way of thinking. I skipped my morning cup of coffee. Things were a bit hectic and I was hoping to actually get home and take a nap. Unfortunately, once I'm up, I'm up for the day. Yeah, I'm one of those.

So, I never made my daily Starbucks run. By the time 2pm rolled around I thought I was dehydrated or getting sick. I had a pounding headache, my stomach was queasy and I was completely fatigued. Kind of like being hungover or, as I call it, Sunday mornings. When I realized what the problem was I sucked down a Coke and all was better. Eye opening to say the least.

I am now in the process of re-evaluating my life. Do I have other addictions of which I'm not aware or conscious? Are there things I can't live without? Here's what I've come up with:

Starbucks: I used to be a Dunkin' man until a friend converted me. Believe me, I went kicking and screaming, but now I can't live without either a NonFat Vanilla Latte or (in the summer) an iced Americano! And don't even get me started on those Java Chip Frappachinos. Oh, man, I just drooled all over my keyboard. C'mon, Summer, get here already!

Beer: Duh

Cigars: Not the cheapos, but the nice ones. Don't really need these, just enjoy them.

Junior Mints: 'They're very refreshing!'

Boloco's Buffalo Chicken Burrito: Especially on a cold winter day or when you have a cold. Just clears your head right out.

Cookies: These are my downfall. I can't resist any type of cookie. Oatmeal Raisin, Chocolate Chip, Vienna Fingers, Nutter Butters, and especially those Pepperidge Farm Milanos. I gained 5 pounds just thinking of them. I blame my grandmother, who made the most delicious cookies ever. We always told her she should start her own business. Oddly there are two exceptions to this: Oreos and those Keebler M&M cookies. Not sure why I don't like Oreos. Maybe it's the way it gets in between your teeth or that they tend to taste like dust at times. The Keebler's involve eating them just before coming down with a vicious stomach bug. I'll spare you the details, but I can't even smell them without experiencing post traumatic stress disorder.

Cheese Curls: I could - and have - consume an entire bag of Jax or Cheetos on more than one occasion. These are one of those 'once you start, you can't stop'.

I'm sure I'm missing some, but these are the main ones. And, if you're wondering I do not weigh 350 pounds. Give it time, though.

Today's distraction: Discover what your choice of desert says about you. I'm 'fun loving and people want to be around me'. It also says I 'lack motivation', am a 'practical joker' and a 'friend for life'. To which I say to all my current friends, 'Suckers! You're stuck with me until death!'

http://www.youthink.com/quiz.asp?action=take&quiz_id=4836

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Paint by Numbers

While wifey and the kids are away visiting her sister, I'm painting my upstairs hallway. When the cat's away the mice will....paint? Don't try to stop me! I'm a crazy man!!

I used to paint to earn cash in college and am pretty good at it. One of my many useless skills. I thought it would be a good idea to list the proper way to paint. Just a general 'how to' guide with suggestions and tips. Try and contain your excitement.

Preparation: This is the key to a productive paint job. Make sure you have all the necessary tools to make the job successful. For example, I was getting ready to start on the hallway when I realized I only had 4 beers left. I dropped everything and ran to get another 12. And it's a good thing, too, because when I got back I realized I forgot to pick up any paint or brushes. Which means I spent the rest of the day watching 'The Departed' and sucking down delicious refreshments. Painting can be fun! As far as the actual surface, just paint over it. It's the same as cleaning.

Pick Your Paint Wisely: Guys, this means let the ladies pick and you just approve or deny. We painted our living room 'Desert Sunset' (dark orange) last year. This time she picked out 'Semolina' (light orange). It actually looks nice, but if I had my way I would have tried to custom order 'Iraqi Bloodbath', the team colors of the Celtics (they coordinate nicely. What?) or, in one of my more creative moments, covering the walls with labels of all the different types of beers I've personally tasted. C'mon, they would have been organized and getting all those labels would have been one hell of a party...er...project.

Edge Properly: If there is one thing I want to stress in this entry, it's that border tape is for pussies. PUSSIES! Do it by hand or hire some illegal immigrants to do it for you. You'll spend just as much time, if not more, trying to put the pansy tape in the correct place anyway.

Top Down: No, I'm not talking convertibles here. Start from the top and work your way down. There's nothing more infuriating than getting the walls just right, then realizing you have to put another coat on the ceiling. Little white specks wind up all over your nice new paint job. Of course, you can do what I did and just said it's the new effect all the designers on TLC are using. Or so I hear.....I don't watch that either.

Paint: This ain't fucking rocket science. Just dip the brush or roller, get the excess off and put it on the wall until the old color is completely covered by the new color. Done. Horay! Nice work. Now you're qualified to make eight bucks an hour with no benefits and immigration one step behind you. Congrats.

One more thing. Have fun with it. If you're painting with someone, make sure you roll that spot behind their knees or put a dab in their hair where they can't see it. It could be there for weeks. Also, see if you can roll their entire face before they pull back. Tougher than it sounds.

On a sidenote, I just came back from the store and realized I inadvertently purchased the bachelor grocery list. This included breakfast cereal, bread, makings for nachos, cheese curls (tune in tomorrow), 12 pack of beer and a desert (in this case Enteman's Raspberry Coffee Cake - also great as a quick breakfast). As I realized this, I rushed home because I knew what was in my fridge: Cold pizza. If it weren't for the sippy cups littering the shelves and the dog that won't shut the fuck up, I would truly feel like a bachelor. Needless to say I made nachos and overdosed on college hoops.


Today's distraction: Play a kick ass game of paintball. Helps get out your frustrations if you're having a tough day, too. Enjoy!

http://www.addictinggames.com/paintball.html

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Raiders of the Lost Art

Watching the Super Bowl post game show I thought it funny that Marino, Sharpe and Boomer were all screaming over the music blaring from the Dolphin Stadium speakers. They could hardly hear themselves and the music was nearly drowning out what they were saying.

Out at the bars Saturday night, my voice wore down from yelling at my friends. Sunday morning I sounded like Demi Moore with emphysema.

The Celtics game I went to last year was louder than the average AC/DC concert.

Every place we go, it's getting increasingly difficult to carry on a simple conversation. The bars all crank music up to deafening levels, which I still don't understand. Most of them don't have places to dance and the people are there to meet and greet others. So why make them scream at each other? You can play music, just turn it down. I like talking to my friends and want to hear what they have to say. For the most part, anyway. Besides, how are the guys supposed to use terrible lines on women way out of their league if they can't hear?

I used to go to the old Celtic games and there was no music at all. Granted it was the Garden and the speaker system was built in 1922, but it was nice to chat with other game lovers and get their take on what was going on. I remember watching Bird play for 3 quarters and saying to my buddy "Man, he doesn't seem like he's playing that well". This guy in front of me was scoring on his own card and turned around to say "Actually, he's got 29 points already". This kicked off an entire discussion with everyone around us about how an average Bird was still better than other players at their best. An older guy started telling us about watching Bill Russell play and how he was the most menacing player he ever saw. "Just seemed to hate everyone on the other team" Everyone in that section was involved.

Today? They shoot TShirts at you from cannons and blast lame music, while 15 kids dance badly at half court. The only game I can go to and enjoy is the Red Sox. They still play music, but they make an effort to keep thing low key so you can talk. I had a great conversation with a guy from San Diego last season where he explained his admiration for Mark Loretta and how the Padres are constantly making puzzling moves. I love taking my son and explaining why players did certain things or why Manny didn't leave the batters box when he popped out or why the guy that just made the error is getting paid $15 million a year for the next 7 years or why Daddy shouldn't be talking to other women.

So the question remains, is the art of conversation being forced into extinction? Or has it already died and the loud music and sensory overload being used to disguise that fact? Maybe the powers that be are blasting sound at us because they think we don't want to talk to a lot of the weirdos surrounding us.

Let's face it, there are a lot of strange people out there. I, and many others, use MP3 players on the subway for a reason. I don't want Subway Bob telling me how he found Christ or listen to Bitter Sally tell her boyfriend he doesn't pay enough attention to her. I've received more than my share of strange looks while striking up conversations in bars. And those are from my friends!

It's not like people don't like to talk, either. Ever hear a 16 year old girl on her cell phone? Exactly. It just seems like nobody has anything relevant to say. What is the last intelligent conversation you remember having? A talk that made you think about things and actually reconsider your view points?

And, maybe that's the problem, too. We live in an increasingly confrontational society where it's us against them. You're either with us or against us. You're either holy and saintly (and most likely hypocritical) conservative or a hell bound, bleeding heart liberal. Maybe civilized conversation isn't possible anymore. I know I've been treated like an idiot on more than one occasion for offering my opinion on a subject. That I'm an idiot had nothing to do with it, my opinion just differed from the group I was with.

Nobody seems capable of thinking about what someone else is saying and actually considering it for what it is and not who it's coming from. Everyone is so hell bent on their own opinions, they can't accept anyone else's unless it agrees with theirs. Look at abortion. When's the last time anyone had a civilized debate on that topic? Is it even possible? If opinions are like fuel to a fire, are people now fearful of sharing them? Are we just sticking to safe topics like the weather and sports so we don't get into an emotional argument? Can we not like another person just because they differ on what the Catholic Church should have done about sexual abuse?

I guess the issue boils down to what I blame all other societal ills on: Religion. Let's just get rid of all organized religion and maybe we can start talking to each other again. And if not, at least I won't have to deal with Subway Bob and his new found faith. There's no downside!!

Today's distraction: Below is a link to some great conversation starters. I especially like this one: "What's the longest walk you've taken?" It's seemingly trivial, but answers could go anywhere. For example, mine would be this: Walking home from Boston on 9/11. Subways were packed, streets were clogged and I just kept walking from station to station hoping to get on a train. I wound up walking across the bridge that connects the North End with Charlestown with about 5,000 stunned and silent people. It was the closest thing to the end of the world I ever want to experience. Never got on a train and wound up walking all the way home.

Do me a favor and ask someone that question this week and let me know where it leads.

In fact, I'm asking you, dear reader. What's the longest walk you've ever taken? Leave your answer in the comment section if you have time.

http://www.corsinet.com/braincandy/question.html

Monday, February 19, 2007

Balls

"Northwestern University researchers have discovered men with an unusual form of dementia have a higher rate of vasectomy than men the same age who are cognitively normal"

- Science Daily 2/14/07

You getting this? Getting your nuts sliced open makes you more likely to go nuts. But only a certain kind of nuts.

Primary Progressive Aphasia is a neurological disease in which people have trouble recalling and understanding words. Sandra Weintraub, professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences and of neurology at Northwestern's Feinberg School of Medicine, led a group study of 47 men with PPA and 57 men who were mentally fit. Turns out 40 percent of the men with PPA had vasectomies while only 16 percent of the unimpaired men had been snipped.

This may be a complete coincidence (although that's a huge difference). As Weintraub herself said "It doesn't mean having a vasectomy will give you this disease, but it may be a risk factor to increase your chance of getting it."

I think it might be something else. Maybe, just maybe, men really do think with their dicks. It's always been sort of a running joke, but there could be something to it. You snip away a part of our manhood and we suddenly have trouble remembering what you call the thing that keeps the water in the sink. You tie our ball sacks in a knot and we can't understand why our friends are calling us 'whipped'.

Look what happens when women treat our genitals with tender loving care. We give flowers, gifts, shower them with all the affection they can tolerate (sometimes more), actually listen and try to change. Soon as it gets ignored we begin grunting and immersing ourselves in football. As soon as it's taken for granted, the flowers and gifts dry up. And as soon as it's cut with a razor sharp scalpel we can't remember shit. There has to be a connection. Maybe our scrotum is directly connected to our cerebellum.

I would really like this study expanded. Do these same men start watching 'Oprah' and 'Desperate Housewives'? Do they get irrational cravings for hot fudge sundaes on the 15th of every month? Is it all just an excuse to explain why they keep forgetting their wives birthdays? Are these guys faking to explain why they forgot to pick up milk and bread for the 5th time in a row? I know men who've gone to much greater lengths to get out of doing chores around the house.

What about the other side? Do women who've had their tubes tied become sane? Wait, I already have the answer to that. It's a resounding no. In fact, it's officially been classified as a "Fuck, NO!!" in the medical journals.

I guess the best reaction would be to stick to my tried and true philosophy. 'Keep any and all sharp objects away from your crotch'. Hard to go wrong following that rule.

Today's distraction: Compete in a tower building competition. The towers are phallic symbols, in case I'm being too subtle. Not something I'm normally accused of, so wasn't sure how to handle it. Seems 'awkwardly' is how.

http://files.gtds.net/games/towerblaster.swf

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Kid Flicks

You may not have noticed, but we seem to be in a golden age of children's movies. Having a six and two year old means I've seen more than my share. And seen them many, many, many times. In some cases we're approaching triple figures. I've decided to put a list together on which animated movies are the most rewatchable.

In no particular order.

Shrek: This one still cracks me up. Not for the littlest ones, but my eldest has enjoyed this since age 4. "It talks!?" "Yeah, it's getting him to shut up that's the trick!"

Monsters, Inc: The most original of all the Pixar movies and, sadly, Billy Crystal's best (only?) work since 'When Harry Met Sally'. Plus who can resist Boo?

The Iron Giant: This isn't just one of my favorite kid movies, it's also one of my favorite all time movies. Funnier than most people realize, superior voice work by the entire cast and a message you want your kids to hear.

Toy Story 2: Better looking, funnier and gentler than the original.




Wallace and Gromit - Curse of the WereRabbit: No, really. This movie is freakin' hysterical. Takes multiple watchings to catch all the jokes, too. Like Gromit putting a cardboard box over a naked Wallace, then realizing the box has an upside down label "May Contain Nuts" on the outside. I liked 'Chicken Run', too, but not as much as the others on the list.


Finding Nemo: What is it with Pixar getting great performances out of unexpected sources? First Billy Crystal, now Ellen Degeneres who's Dori is one of the most memorable (pun alert!) movie characters in history. Visually stunning and surprisingly emotional, considering we're dealing with fish.




The Incredibles: Cross Pixar with the director of 'The Iron Giant' and you get an all time classic. Not for the youngest ones, but 5 and up love this. That includes me.





Today's distraction: What Disney character are you? Big shocker here. Are you sitting down? I'm Goofy! Hyuck!

http://www.youthink.com/quiz.asp?action=take&quiz_id=2492

Friday, February 16, 2007

Salvation

My original intention of this space was to keep anyone who reads it from doing any actual work. I have turned procrastination into an art form and feel it part of my responsibility to give other people a break from their daily routine. Hopefully I provide some laughs and food for thought. Provoke rage for my opinions and pity for my life.

This entry is a break from the norm for I have discovered something of tremendous importance. Something that I feel I should inform the masses about. It is my duty - nay, my DESTINY - to share this with the world. It's so important it couldn't wait until tomorrow, hence two entries in one day (I'm spoiling you). Please remember this as part of my legacy. My small contribution that helped shape and ease the lives of my readers.

I hereby present you with an achievement for which (it could be argued) the internet was invented. A staggeringly simple, yet profoundly genius invention that I will be using and abusing for the rest of my life.

I give you http://www.callthefuture.org/

I will let the website explain itself. Just remember when you're trapped at a lame work party and would rather be out boozing it up with your friends, this tool is your salvation.

You're welcome.

Driver's Ed



I've invented a new game. It's called 'Drunk or Asian' and the rules are simple. You see a driver do something inexplicably stupid and/or dangerous and you have to guess if the driver is drunk or Asian.

Yes, I know how racist this sounds and I'm probably giving drunk drivers a bad rep, but I'm fighting a lifetime of experience. It's like thinking I have a shot with the scorchingly hot office temp. I can fool myself for a few minutes that things might be different this time around, before the reality of my marriage, age, and lack of sex appeal rears up and kicks me in the teeth. Like witnessing a good Asian driver, it just ain't happening.

Let's be clear, I'm not talking about the younger generation that have grown up in the U.S. I'm referring to the older Asian folks who don't seem to speak much English, understand road signs, have any idea which side of the road they should be driving on, or why that funny little blinky light needs to stay on all the time (it doesn't).

Granted, there are more than enough idiotic American drivers to go around, but they know their driving like lunatics. There's a difference between being clueless and being a complete asshole. At least the asshole knows a red light means they need to stop. Or, at the very least, make sure they can beat the oncoming traffic before blowing through it.

It also raises the question of whether something that is true can be classified as racist. Sure, maybe I'm sterotyping elderly Asian drivers, but has anyone seen one that is even decent? I don't want a perfect driver, just someone that doesn't suddenly take a right hand turn from the left lane of a divided highway. Or one that can't decide which fork in the road to take and winds up driving over the curb and hitting a tree. I actually saw this happen! Apparently the cars in Vietnam don't have brakes.

How often do you have to witness certain behavior before it goes from stereotype to fact? Here's one suggestion: when you can predict behavior or actions because of previously witnessed behavior or action from a member of the same race.

Example: I took my 6 year old (he was 5 when this happened) to his friend's birthday party at one of those huge, indoor playground places that I hate (in fact, this deserves it's own post one day). After the party I'm walking him back to our car and I notice an Asian woman get into her car and start it up. Now we're approaching the back of the car and she is going to have to back out of the space. Call me racist, call me insensitive, call me an dickhead (I've been called much much worse) but when I saw the reverse lights on her car light up I told my son to stop and back up. Sure enough, not only did she not look behind her before backing out, she bumped the car we were standing next to and took off without a second thought. That bump could have been us for all she knew.

After she drove off, my son asks 'Why didn't she stop, Dad?' I said, 'Some people just aren't very good drivers' and left it at that. I don't want to do is pass along my prejudices to my impressionable son. He'll learn things his own way. Maybe by the time he learns to drive things will be different. Unless China begins a driver's education program, it's not likely. But hope springs eternal.

Or so I hear. A French person said it to me once and you know those French. Rude, unclean and untrustworthy.

Today's distraction: Find out your 'Car Carma'. It ranks the astrological signs as drivers. I'm one of the worst when it comes to getting tickets and in the top 5 when it comes to overall bad drivers. I rule!

http://www.insurancehotline.com/a10.html

Thursday, February 15, 2007

President BeachBum



Yeah, you read that right. I figure everyone else and their brother are jumping into the Presidential race, why not me? Let's take a look at my competition:

John McClain - too short
John Edwards - too pretty
Mitt Romney - too Mormon
Hillary Clinton - too manly
Barack Obama - too foreign

You really think we're going to elect President a man who's middle name is Hussein and last name is one letter removed from 'Osama'?

I suppose I need a platform, so let's start fleshing that out right now.

First, I'm eliminating any unnecessary government interference. You want an abortion? Go get one. You want to smoke weed in your house? Feel free. Just invite me over. You want to gamble away your life savings? Have fun. Just know that we're taking half of any winnings from you and half of any losses from the house.

Drugs and prostitution will now be legal. Fuck this war on drugs. We can't win anyway. Instead I'm going tobacco on them. We'll regulate it and tax the shit out of it. Prostitutes will be screened for any and all possible diseases on a monthly basis or they won't have their 'Whore License' renewed. We'll set up clean drug houses so people can get high in a safe environment, but they won't be allowed to leave until they're sober. And if they want to go to rehab, well just jump on the bus idling outside. It will take them to a nice, relaxing, state of the art, facility. The money earned from this will go towards....

Health care for everyone. HMOs, you will now be government contractors matching patients with the proper doctors and care. Doctors, you can now treat as you see fit and not over charge for prescriptions and/or unneeded tests. If I catch you scamming the system, there will be no mercy. You go to jail and no more practicing unless it's a forced penile exam by your 300 pound cell mate, Bubba. Good luck with that.

Corporations, since you now have a cash influx from not having to provide health care for your employees, I'm implementing an 'Education Tax' on you. Let's say it will be 75% of what you used to pay for HMOs. So you're still getting back 25% of that money to do with what you want.

75% of this tax is going into a general fund that will double teacher's salaries. You want to know why education is having so many problems? Look a the pay scale in your home town. Now consider what these people have to do for a living and ask if you would do what they do for what it's paying. Would you do it for double that salary? Alrighty then. By doubling the salaries we can now recruit the top minds in the country to teach our children. What intellectual wouldn't teach for 6-7 hours a day for $80,000 a year and still have time to write and publish?

The other 25% of that 'Education Tax' will go towards building and equipment maintenance for the schools. That includes tighter security.

And since I'm in a position of power, I'm developing a new traffic police department. Their sole responsibility will be to drive around town in unmarked, average cars and look for insane drivers. For example, last night some maniac was weaving in and out of traffic trying to find some non-existent hole he could drive through. All he wound up doing was almost side swiping my truck, the Camry next to me and slam into the back of the FedEx truck that stopped for a red light. He did this for 4 blocks and always wound up right next to me at the next red light. If one of my new registry police witnessed this guy, they would have the power to pull him over, take his license away right then and there and impound his car for a week. The charge would be 'DWAA' - driving while an asshole. His license wouldn't be revoked forever, just a week. Second offense, a month. Third, a year and so on. Let's call them 'The Road Warriors'. Love that movie.

Iraq? Consider us out. They've survived centuries before without our interference, they'll survive without us again. There will be one thing I do before I pull out (man, this is sounding like every sex conversation I've ever had): Touring the Middle East on a goodwill tour will be our new military prostitutes. Blowjobs for any and all Iraqi men. Let them know what they're missing. We can cure them of their American hatred in three weeks. And while they're in the area, we can give the Iraqi women lessons on how to do it. I'm betting that once Iraqi men get one and Iraqi women know how to give a proper one making bombs will be the last thing on anyone's mind. In fact, let's make sure the men know how to properly satisfy the women before we go, too. They probably have no idea what the hell is going on underneath those black gowns. Once they figure out how much fun sex can be for both partners, they'll never leave the house. We'll be seeing belly shirts and pierced Iraqi belly buttons in no time. God Bless America!!

As for the debates, well, let's just say things are going to change. First, I want Chris Rock to be the moderator. Second, unpredictable physical violence could break out at any point. Hillary makes a good point on something, I'm throwing a haymaker at her ugly face. Third, personal insults are good for a point. Let's say Edwards criticizes my Iraq policy. I just come back with "Dude, you couldn't even beat out John Kerry for the democratic nomination last time. JOHN KERRY! You fucking loser!" Or "Hey, think your nose is running. Hurry over to your mother so she can wipe it, you pussy." I especially want to rebut by saying 'homosayswhat?" really fast and see who responds. My money's on Hillary.

I'll be fine tuning things in the coming months, including naming my running mate. I'm leaning towards Diddy right now, but he changes his name too often. Maybe Ludacris. Either way the White House be the shizizzle when I get in there!! Go BOYEEEEEEE!!!!

Today's distraction: Pretend you're the President and take shots at Bin Laden. Great fun. Make sure you turn down the volume as the gunshots can be loud.


And since that wears thin rather quickly and I'm pimping myself out for your vote, here's a bonus distraction: Name the Presidents. I got a perfect score. See? I'm more than worthy to be your leader.



Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Random Patterns

Another brain dump for my excess thoughts and opinions.

Discovered a perfect hangover song by 'Sorry About Dresden' called 'Sick and Sore'. Download it if you can find it and quickly identify with the first few lines. Lead singer even sounds like he's been drinking way too much. 'Better go through the motions, before they go through you'

Watched some of the Grammys (shouldn't it be spelled Grammies?) on Sunday night and came to the sad realization we are in the musical lull. Boring, boring, boring!! Please, someone stir things up next year. And, no U2, I don't mean you. My one reprieve was 'SexyBack' not being performed. I hate that fucking song!

Speaking of the Grammys, can someone please explain to me the difference between Record of the Year and Song of the Year? Aren't they the same thing? Are they going to add a Single of the Year soon? How about Download of the Year?

Movie recommendation: "The Proposition" on DVD. Be warned, it's extremely violent. Australian western that pulls no punches depicting the brutality of that era. Item I found interesting - it was written by Nick Cave. Yeah, that same one. He even wrote the music for it.

New CD recommendation - Peeping Tom. Former Faith No More lead singer mixes up electronica, rock, jazz and hip hop with fantastic lyrics such as 'Well I know assholes grow on trees, but I'm here to trim the leaves'. Plus gets Norah Jones to sing dirty on 'Sucker'. I think I'm in love with her now.

Watched the Kentucky - Florida game on Saturday night and was, once again, reminded what is great about college basketball. Neither team played at top form, but it was down to the wire and playoff intense. Hard to envision Florida not repeating. Not only are they the most talented team, but one of the hardest working. They won this game on pure effort.

It also reminds me that March Madness is right around the corner.

Which reminds me that winter is almost over.

Which in turn reminds me baseball season is about to start.

Which then reminds me that summer is only a few months away.

I think I might cry.

Wound up watching some of 'Grey's Anatomy' last week and I just don't get the appeal of this show. Main character is annoying as hell (I hope she drowns), the medical situations are ripped from every other hospital show and the emotional aspect is soap opera-ish at best (yes, I just made a word up).

Love '24', but the actor playing the President blows. He's not very Presidential. He was better as the sniveling brother to the real President Palmer. There will be only one, true President Palmer. The father revelation was a shocker, too (still wished they got Donald Sutherland to play him). No other show keeps you reeling like this one. You can never seem to regain your balance.

Last weekend was a wasteland for sports. The Pro Bowl? Please. Not even the players cared about that, although it was great to see a punter get absolutely leveled during that fake punt. Leave it to Belichick to set up another team's punter. You don't really think he'd pull that play with his own guy, do you? In an exhibition game? No freakin' way. Props to the dude, though, as he popped back up and ran over to slap his tackler on the helmet. They'd still be peeling me off the field.

Watched some of the Lakers - Cavaliers game and was struck by how both Kobe and LeBron meander through spots in the game. Almost like they pick and choose when to actually try. Can you imagine Magic, Bird, or Jordan doing something like that? Christ, Bird had three herniated disks and was diving to the floor for loose balls. Jordan had a 104 degree temperature and still busted his ass. We're suddenly seeing the spoiled, superstars-since-high-school athletes try to motivate themselves through an 82 game marathon. It's not always pretty. Too bad they weren't given an actual work ethic along with all those free pairs of Nikes.

Speaking of LeBron, caught on interview with him over the weekend and he was asked what his goals were. His answer was not "To win as many championships as possible" or "To make myself into the best player ever" or even "To become the best person I can be". No, his answer was this: "I want to become one of the richest men in the world." While I can understand the drive behind this, it pained me a bit to hear this from someone who still hasn't become the player we all suspect he can be. Sure, he's great now, but there is no ceiling on how great he can become and it seems like he's already getting bored with the game. I can see him retiring at age 30 because he just doesn't enjoy playing anymore. That is, if he even enjoys it now. Hard to tell watching him on the court.

Friend of mine has been away for the last week. While I don't actually see or speak to this friend, I still feel something missing. Odd, I know, but that's me in a nutshell. I've been thinking about this friend a lot lately, too, as the family is going through a health crisis. Frustrating not being able to do anything. You ever wish you could just concentrate real hard and make things better through sheer force of will? Me too.

I just read French's blog about his trip to Cali (link to the right) and realized his girlfriend could, quite possibly, be the perfect woman. I mean seriously...batting cages?!! I thought, "Man, where was she when I was single" and one single unprovoked, unsolicited, unnecessary word popped into my head as the answer: Kindergarten. Stupid brain.

I'd wish everyone a Happy Valentine's Day, but I don't believe in it.

Today's distraction: Find out what kind of drinker you are. To the surprise of nobody, I'm a 'Heavy Drinker'. Which just means this test is frighteningly accurate.

http://www.youthink.com/quiz.asp?action=take&quiz_id=3980

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Mentally Unfit

New research conducted by Harvard University psychologist Ellen Langer and her student Alia Crum has concluded that a majority of the positive effects of exercise could be all in our heads. They did an experiment with 84 cleaning women from 7 different hotels. They told staffs at 4 hotels that what they did during their work day constituted good exercise. They told the other 3 hotel staffs nothing.

Results? After 4 weeks the staffs at the informed hotels lost an average of 2 pounds, had their blood pressure drop an average of 10% and "were significantly healthier as measured by body-fat percentage, body mass index, and waist-to-hip ratio." The uninformed hotels showed no change.

Do you know what this means? Do you??!! It means I am now on a mental campaign to convince myself that sitting on the couch, drinking 22 beers a day, and becoming nearly immobile is great exercise. Forget actually going to the gym, I'll just imagine doing nothing is good for me. I'll be dropping pounds in no time. Pecs will be ripped from lifting myself out of bed in the morning...ok...afternoon usually. Biceps will bulge with the effort of lifting a nice cigar towards my mouth. Delts and lats sculpted by showering. I'll develop six pack abs while drinking a six pack.

The options are limitless. Ice cream for lunch? Absolutely! The calcium helps you tone. Chocolate cake for dinner? Of course! Eggs in the recipe provide great protein, which will give you energy for the tough hammock workout you'll be doing later.

Plus, I can get rich on my own diet craze. Let's call it "BeachBum's Tequila Diet". You drink a shot of Tequila for breakfast, lunch and dinner along with your regular meal. I'll tell everyone the proteins and minerals contained within Tequila naturally raises your metabolism and will help you shed the inches! People will lose weight because they'll be convinced the diet is supposed to make them lose weight. I can't lose!!!

Next time you see that huge, buff guy walking down the street - you know the one that can barely move his arms to scratch his head? - that could be me!! I'm working out constantly now. I'm gonna be RIPPED!!

Time to go watch SportsCenter. Did you know it helps bulk up the calf muscles? It's true!! Watching '24' is great cardio, too!! And 'Lost' works your glutes.


Today's distraction: Take a health and fitness quiz. I did pretty sucky at 60%. It was like high school all over again. I just needed to go smoke weed in the back parking lot at lunch and the effect would have been complete.

http://www.sheppardsoftware.com/dynamic_MC_Medical_Trivia_web.html

Monday, February 12, 2007

Orion's Fate



D-Wave, a quantum computing (yeah, I know!!) company based out of British Columbia (that's in Canada) have developed the first and only 16-qubit quantum processor; The Orion (fearsomely pictured above). While I have no idea what that means, what it does, or anything about quantum physics, I'm guessing this is exciting news. Or not. I haven't a clue.

What I do know (presumably) is that, once again, we are taking a quantum leap forward in technology (get it? quantum leap?? I just need to fit a Sam joke in here and I'm golden. And yes, I'm aware nobody under 30 got that). Supposedly this new processor can run in different states AT THE SAME TIME!! Our current processors only run in one state and just switch back and forth really, really fast.

This news is just....just....ok, I don't know what it is...but it sounds impressive until you consider that we're talking in nanoseconds here. Quantum processing is dealing in time frames so small I can't even wrap my tiny little brain around the idea. Consider this: Not only is this computer running in different states at the same time, it's actually running in 2 to the power of 16 different states at the same time!! I'm totally not shitting you on this, either. Theoretically it can determine a program's result without actually running the program!!

If your brain just packed up and left, you're not alone. We're talking about Quantum computing for cryin' out loud. Do the people working on this even understand it? Let's hope so. I wouldn't want this thing discovering time travel in one of it's states because it's bored finishing up someone's office memo in another. Or realizing the world would be better off without humanity while sending out the office party email. So the question I have is this: What practical application is this thing good for? If it can determine the outcome of a problem without actually running how do we know it's correct? Will it start reading our minds? I picture a HAL-like unit in the office. "You've seriously miscalculated next year's budget, Dave." (Again, 20 somethings, I apologize)

While this sounds cool (except for DA, who's groaning to herself because I'm talking technology again) the time frames are so small it will barely make a difference to us. If our current computing is so fast we can't even tell it's switching between states, why will this new multi-state computer matter? "This one computes in .03 nanoseconds? My current one can only run in .6 nanoseconds." When, my dear friends, does it cease to matter?
(Psst, I think we might already be there...shhhhh)

Today's distraction: See how fast your reflexes are. Mine are actually pretty good. I'm a Bobbing Bobcat. Plus it's fun to shoot sheep with tranqs. Don't worry, no animals are actually harmed in the making of this game.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/science/humanbody/sleep/sheep/reaction_version5.swf

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Movin' On Up

I've decided I hate living here. Not in Boston, I love the city, just hate the weather. I love living here about 4-5 months out of the year. That's it. There's nothing better than Boston in the spring and summer. Love that time of year.

Problem is the rest of the year is cold, rainy, snowy, sleety, shitty, crappy, depressing - uh - y? My ideal living arrangement would be living here from say May to October. Then living in a nice warm climate the rest of the year. In my fantasy it would be Grand Cayman, but I'll have to settle for Orlando or San Diego. I'm not picky.

Family, of course, prevents us from living my dream. We can't take the kids out of school a month into the year, then bring them back with a month left. Wait, could we? Wifey's a teacher, she could home school them as long as I didn't mind them learning that she always right and men are evil, corrupt demons from hell. We are, but they should learn that on the street like the rest of us.

Plus, wifey doesn't like the idea of being away from home during the holidays. She'll bitch and complain about them when she's around, but the subject of moving gets the eyes welling and that quiver in her voice. I say we cut off all contact and get the hell out. We can have a Christmas in July or something. Why doesn't that work? We would have Christmas on the beach twice a year!! That would be perfect!!!

My only choice is to become independently wealthy so I can do what I want, when I want. Since I'm fresh out of ideas, motivation or anything resembling an actual work ethic, it's the lottery for me. Powerball, MegaBucks, Mass Millions. I'll be living the American Dream in no time.

Today's distraction: Take this test to see what city you should be living in. Mine was, unsurprisingly, Miami. Beaches, warm weather, world class cigars. If they just spoke English there it would be perfect!!

http://www.hgtv.com/hgtv/pac_ctnt_988/text/0,,HGTV_22056_57538,00.html?hp=whatsnew_CityQuiz

Friday, February 9, 2007

Richie Rich

Wifey and I were watching some coma inducing celebrity show (not sure why, but she loves watching this shit) and they did a quick item on two supposedly famous people I had never heard of renewing their vows on their ten year anniversary. It was a nice beach wedding (renewal?) and, in a post interview, the bride kept gushing about how great she looked and what a fantastic marriage she has. I bet my wife they'd be divorced within two years. She didn't find it funny, but wouldn't take the bet either.

After the segment (as they call it in the biz), wifey looks at me and says "How come we didn't renew our vows on our 10 year anniversary?" I was going to remind her that she kicked me out of the house during that time in our marriage, but realized I was way off. That was our 11th anniversary. I decided to answer "Because we have no money and no time".

To which she responded "You're such a killjoy." Hard to argue with that, but I wondered how many other couples viewed the same piece and asked themselves the same question. "Why didn't we do that?"

Here's why: Because celebrities have more time and money than should be legal. These people have nothing to do during their day. NOTHING!! There's a reason Brad Pitt, Mark Wahlberg, Jennifer Aniston, Kate Hudson always look fantastic. It's all they have to do.

You always hear about actors working 18 hour days and going through "Brutal shoots". That doesn't mean they work 18 hour days, it means they were on the set for 18 hours. 90% of the set work on a movie is done by the grunts; Best boy, associate directors, sound men, lighting people, landscapers, set designers, etc. They are the ones that work 15 hours to get the set just right, while the actors sit in their air conditioned, luxury trailers waiting to be called. So what do they do with their time? Exercise, have their personal chefs whip up a low cal, no fat, ice cream treat of which they eat half, and read the latest People to see how they looked in that red dress you'll never see them in again.

Actors and celebrities do not live in real life. They don't live like the rest of us. They get paid millions by movie producers and studios to work out 8 hours a day for 6 months so they look buff for their next action movie. Then they take 6 months off during which time they read through scripts and pick what they want. In the meantime they have luncheons and attend charity events and get all sorts of free stuff they'll never use even though they have more money than some small countries and can afford to buy whatever they want.

Me? I fight my way onto the subway with all the other rat racers, pay for my own Starbuck latte, work 8-10 hours before fighting my way back home. If I'm lucky I'll get to the gym on the weekends. That's if I'm not sick, the kids don't have a birthday party, family obligations or other obstacles don't get in my way. Like my own laziness. That's a big obstacle.

My problem isn't that famous people have a better life than me. I am jealous, no mistake there, though I would be driven to killing and dismembering a member of the press if I had to live like that. My issue is the constant - and I mean CONSTANT - coverage these shows provide. Every stupid little aspect of these morons is scrutinized, covered, analyzed, then done again until something else happens to attract their ADD gaze. How many entertainment shows are there now? 50? 100? There's an entire fucking channel dedicated to following the likes of Tom Cruise and Katey Holmes (TomKat! BARF!!) around. To which I say "WHO CARES??!!" These people are not important to me. I don't care what their baby looks like or how many people attended their wedding. Christ, a good percentage of them are complete imbeciles with personality disorders.

But I can live with this. What I can't live with is them putting ideas into my wife's head. That is when you cross the line!! "Why don't we do that?" Why? Because we're normal and have kids and have jobs to go to and bills to pay. That's why. Fucking 'Access Hollywood' is making my life miserable.

Today's distraction: Pretend you're Brittany Spears and keep your baby away from the police as they attempt to take it away. Great fun. I especially like the voice they use for Spears. So true to life.

http://www.armorgames.com/games/britneysbabydash.html

Thursday, February 8, 2007

Child's Play

Nothing makes me feel older than dropping all sorts of pop culture references from my youth and getting that blank stare back. You know that 'what bizarre world did you come from' look? I'm not the only one that gets that look, right? Right??!!!

The other day at lunch two 20-somethings are talking about shows they watch growing up. Mickey Mouse Club, Kids Incorporated, Saved by the Bell. That's fine. Different generations and all, but what killed me was this line:

"I used to watch all of those shows on Disney Channel"

Why does this kill me? Because the Disney Channel didn't even freakin' exist when I was a kid. I had to watch 'Speed Racer', 'The Banana Splits' and 'Star Blazers' on UHF 56. Oh, we had cable. I even figured out the old index card trick on the original cable boxes so we could get all the channels. But cable was just getting off the ground. There weren't specialty channels designed just for kids or teens. We had to jumble through all the crap to find something cool. That's why MTV was such a big deal when it came on. Finally! Something for us!! Parents wanted nothing to do with it. Now, it's just another crappy reality channel.

What surprised me was a girl who just turned 30 saying "Yeah, it wasn't around for us, either" The two talking were 25 and 26. That means in 4 years, things changed so drastically it created a shortened generation gap

It appears that gap is only getting larger and more compressed, too. Consider this:

My boys are growing up with DirecTV, complete with 8, count 'em 8, children channels, not including PBS. 2 Nickelodeons, 3 Disney Channels, 3 cartoon channels. And Nick just launched a Teen Nick channel so they can brain wash my kids until they're legal.

They are the first generation that has always known cell phones and computers in the house. My six year old already knows how to get to NickJr.com and play games on the laptop. My 2 year old walks around with a play cell phone attached to his ear.

My son emails Santa his list every year. And he always gets a customized response! What the fuck? Does Santa really exist and I just stopped believing!!?? Does he have elves manning the huge, whirring mainframe that tracks the children, runs complex algorithms in .3 nanoseconds and subdivides and groups the good from the bad?

We bought a mini van last year and all my son wanted was a DVD player in it.

I can watch nearly any program I want on my computer. That includes out of market games for March Madness. The last two Marches, I've setup two laptops in front of my TV and watched the regional game on CBS, then two different out of market games on my laptop. It was fucking awesome and you can bet your ass I'm doing it again this year. Oh YEAH!!!!!

All new Subarus are coming with a navigation system STANDARD! Think about that for a minute, then consider the car your parents used to tote you around in. Hell, we didn't even grow up with seat belts, never mind car seats. I remember sleeping in the back of our van and waking up air born when my father had to slam the breaks on. I hit, rolled, got back up and went back to my seat.

You can setup a completely wireless network in your house, including cameras in the kid's rooms so you can see what they're doing. And you can monitor them from anywhere in the world as long as you have an Internet connection. If you think I'm not setting this up in the next 5-7 years, you don't know what I was like as a kid.

I could go on (TIVO, iPods, cell phones with GPS so your ex-boyfriend can stalk you from his computer), but you get the point. Technology is advancing at such a rapid pace, it's getting impossible to keep up. Sadly, the more I age the more winded I'll get trying to do so. Instead I'll be talking about 'the good ole days' when you needed a cell phone to make calls and not that new fangled ear piercing that connects you to any and all available wireless networks and tells you which way to turn in the hallway.

Hopefully, it will download porn right to my central cortex.

Today's distraction: Check out the video game consoles from 1996. You can go all the way back to 1975 if you want, too. Back to Atari's Pong. I still remember playing Space Invaders at my friends house and being amazed. Then Intellivision, then RBI Baseball where you could have Whitey Ford throw the nastiest curve ball. And, believe it or not, you could play as Babe Ruth and hit a home run every time you made contact. Good times had by all.

http://www.thegameconsole.com/videogames96.htm

Wednesday, February 7, 2007

Space Shot

In my never ending quest to keep you informed, entertained and from doing anything useful with your time, I ran across a story about a woman who has redefined the term commitment. The link to the entire story is at the bottom, but here are some highlights.

Lisa Marie Nowak is a NASA astronaut who had a fling with Bill Oefelein, 'another NASA astronaut, which she categorized as "more than a working relationship but less than a romantic relationship," according to the charging affidavit.' Both Nowak and Oefelein are highly qualified pilots who have flown more than 80 types of aircrafts combined. They both flew on the last Discovery Space Shuttle mission which, I'm guessing, makes them members of the elite 100,000 mile club.

Now, I'm sure it isn't unusual for two working NASA pilots to have an affair (whether it's approved by NASA is another matter), but what makes this story different is what Nowak did after the affair was over.

See, Oefelein was also screwing one Ms. Colleen Shipman, who just so happens to be a Captain in the US Air Force. Nowak learned of Shipman and proceeded to drive from Texas to Orlando in order to meet with Shipman to 'talk to Shipman about their relationships with Oefelein'. Apparently the talk she had planned needed the following items:

- Trench coat
- Wig
- Knife
- BB gun
- Pepper spray
- Latex gloves
- Steel mallet
- Several feet of rubber tubing

Novak waited in the airport for Shipman, who just flew in and followed her to her car. She faked needing some help and when Shipman rolled her window down a bit Novak used the pepper spray. Shipman managed to speed away and called police.

Novak, a mother of three I might add, is charged with attempted kidnapping, battery, and attempted vehicle burglary with battery. She was released on $15,000 bail and is required to wear a GPS anklelet until trial.

But here's where Novak went above and beyond the call of duty. Also found in her car were a box full of diapers. You see, she wore diapers on her 12 hour drive so she didn't have to stop for bathroom breaks. Now that's thinking outside the box!! Or outside the loo, as it were.

While I'm disgusted and somewhat impressed at her endurance, it raises some questions. Like how did she change her own diaper while driving?

Was defecation involved?

Does NASA perform psychological profiles on all pilots?

Who was watching her kids?

How good does this guy need to be in bed before a woman pulls something like this?

Was it a rental car she was driving?

If so, was there cleaning/disinfecting insurance on it?

Did the car wind up with a smell similar to Seinfeld's old car? Where it just wouldn't come out and even an exorcism didn't help?

Considering she seems fairly intelligent and plans well, couldn't she have come up with a less conspicuous disguise than wig and trench coat? Did she think she was in 'Casablanca'?

What was the purpose of the steel mallet? Do I even want to know? I can't help but think of what Mel Gibson's character went through in 'Payback'.

I must humbly admit that I've had women pull similar stunts because of me. But it's usually a complex plan of escape, not due to jealousy.

Here's the entire story:

http://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/space/orl-bk-nasaastronaut0507feb05,0,6104316.story?page=1&coll=orl-home-headlines

Today's distraction: Rescue some abandoned astronauts. Mouse driven game, but has sound so turn down your volume if you're at work. Watch out for the asteroids.

http://www.grazat.dk/games/lost-in-the-space.shtml

Tuesday, February 6, 2007

Ode to Winter

I hate you winter
You are one cold bitch
You make my eyes water
You make my skin itch

I want you to go away
And never return
I want my summer back
I want a sunburn

I want pools and beaches
I want AC running, not heat
I want 80 degree weather
I want to be outside when I eat

Screw you, winter
Nobody wants you here
The only thing you're good for
Is keeping cold in my beer

With you around
My hands are extra dry
They crack and bleed
And make me want to cry

I don't want to wear gloves
I don't want to shovel snow
I want you to get the hell out
Just take your shit and go

I realize you've been better
Than you have been most years
But that's small consolation
When I've lost both my ears

Your wind is colder than hell
I never want you to blow or swirl
Ask anyone who knows me
I'd never say that to a girl

It's nothing personal, winter
People just like summer more
They get to go outside
Head down to the shore

I hear there are some people
That like having you around
But they tend to be skiers
Their minds not sound

I don't want to hear any complaints
Do not sneer or pout
Just take your snow and cold
And get the fuck out!!

Today's distraction: Take your mind off the winter blues and enjoy the good life. Try and help the effect by playing calypso music. Or Beach Boys. Whatever floats your boat. Ahhh, boats.....

http://away.com/travel_photo_gallery/away_caribbean_ss/index.html?gclid=CM7xpoP2iIoCFSJFSgodZhEreg

Monday, February 5, 2007

Leftovers

Some left overs from the weekend.

Super Bowl Game: Man alive, this is the best we could do? The ugliest, most boring one I've seen yet. Every other play was a fumble or missed opportunity. I know, it was raining, but everyone has played football in the rain before and they are paid professionals. Even AV missed a field goal!! It started off so well, too, with the opening kick off. Whatever, now no football until next year. That just depresses me.

Super Bowl Halftime: My wife and I had a discussion on whether Prince getting electrocuted because of the rain during his performance would be the worst thing or best thing to happen to his career. We couldn't decide.

Super Bowl Commercials: Usually if the game is a bit dull like this one there are some entertaining commercials to hold my interest. Was there one that stood out at all? Any? Go Daddy was just ok, Bud Light seemed forced (nothing tops the rubber floor), the beard comb over made me laugh, but seems weird in retrospect. Maybe the Career Builder commercial, but in past years that wouldn't have cracked the top ten. There were more commercials for CBS shows than anything else. Did you know 'Criminal Minds' is 'TVs hottest drama'? Did you??

Marriage: Incident occurred at Vox that sums up the institution of marriage. We were at the bar and everyone was having a good time. We were close to the door, so I kept my coat on to protect myself from the drafts. I was comfortable and happy, but wifey kept asking why I wasn't taking my coat off. I said I was fine, but she kept at it, ending with "You're making me uncomfortable. Take your coat off." How having my coat on made her uncomfortable was beyond me, but I didn't consider it a big deal and wanted her to let go of whatever obsessive compulsive thought process she had attached to my coat. I draped it over the back of a bar stool and on top of all our other coats. Not two minutes later my buddy's girlfriend spills half her espresso martini all over it. Now my nice, expensive coat has shit brown stains all over it and I have to drop it off for dry cleaning. Wives and future wives, don't nag your husband into doing something he doesn't want to do. It always ends badly.

TMI: For 'Too Much Information". On Saturday night my buddy suddenly launched into an explicit monologue about the sexual preferences of his girlfriend (who was standing about 5 feet away). While I've never been a kiss and tell kind of guy, I'm definitely not a prude, but this was too much for me to handle and I had to stop him. Maybe his gf being my height and about 30 pounds heavier than me had something to do with it. There are still images I'm trying to gouge out of my mind's eye.

Aging: And, finally, nothing makes you act, show and feel your age more effectively than drinking heavily two consecutive nights. I can't adequately describe my initial reaction to my own reflection on Sunday morning. Let's just say I'm reevaluating my opposition to plastic surgery.

Today's distraction: Try to piss drunk. It's disturbingly good fun and a lot harder when there isn't a wall to brace yourself against. It's a tribute to my drunk fest of a weekend. Just like the good ole days.

http://www.mostfungames.com/piss-drunk.htm