16 September 2007
28 August 2007
“Huh?” is often mistakenly confused with its close relatives “What the…?” (or simply “Wha?”) and “Eh?” However, the latter two more aptly describe circumstances in which one is not sure what they have encountered and/or just heard about. “Huh?” is best reserved for times when one is quite certain they have a firm grasp on the reality and facts of the situation, but their mind fumbles futilely to conjure up any logical or reasonable explanation for why the item exists, deed was done, words were spoken, etc. Consider Caffeine Free Diet Coke for example: No caffeine, no sugar, aspartame aftertaste, yet people still buy it… huh?
Back to my original story – The item in question which produced the “huh?” response that day was a Marlboro two-piece running suit. Just how many packs of cigarettes do you have to smoke to earn enough Marlboro points to send in for your very own Marlboro two-piece running suit? Or if you don’t earn it and simply purchase it, does the Marlboro Company actually have that many fiercely loyal customers who are also addicted to running? I can just imagine the monthly meeting for the local chapter of Marlboro Runners.
Frank: “All right everyone, let’s make this quick. We only have the smokers’ lounge reserved for the next ten minutes and then we have to head back outside near the picnic table for the duration of the meeting. It’s 20 below out there so let’s do our best to wrap this up in the first ten minutes. Okay, first item on the agenda: thank you to everyone who showed up for last month’s run. It was a grueling quarter mile, but thanks to Jimmy, and the well planned smoking breaks every twenty minutes, the time seemed to just fly by. Also, I’m pleased to announce that Earl had a new personal best time – mainly because he forgot his oxygen tank at home and didn’t have its weight dragging him down like usual; but a personal best nonetheless. Oh, and while we’re on the subject, we’ll be accepting donations at the back as you leave for a small thank you gift for the emergency medical technicians who revived Earl at the finish line. We thought we lost you for a minute there, Earl!”
Frank: “Okay, next subject. For safety reasons it was suggested and accepted unanimously that this month’s run consist of two laps around the hospital block. Since we can’t smoke directly in front of the building, please ensure all cigarettes are properly extinguished for the thirty feet before and after the main entrance. Yes, Dale, that means you too.”
Frank: “No, Earl, I still haven’t been able to get any of the local medical supply centers to sponsor us and provide free oxygen tank recharging. However, the manager at Simon’s Brewery did say he might consider giving me a call sometime about our request for donations to fund the purchase of the latest Marlboro running suits.”
Frank: “Yes, Earl, the top-of-the line ones that come with the oxygen backpack and cigarette holster as standard equipment.”
Frank: “Sorry, Earl, we don’t have time to go into that now. Jimmy just finished his second pack which means our time is up for today. Please be generous with your donations on the way out. Everyone have a good week and remember the Marlboro Runners’ Motto: ‘Just breath through the pain…as best you can.’”
12 August 2007
15 July 2007
10. You get to act aloof all the time unless you want something, and everyone accepts that’s just the way it is
9. If you don’t like your caretakers you can simply leave and find others
8. You always land on your feet
7. You don’t have to worry about what to wear
6. Climbing is a cinch
5. If you get stuck up a tree the firefighters will come rescue you and put you in the arms of someone who will baby you for a while because of all your suffering
4. You’re not a dog
3. Paws – padded for stealth, clawed for action
2. Rodents aren’t an infestation, they’re free roaming appetizers
12 July 2007
Online quizzes. There are so many online quizzes nowadays that claim to test everything from your IQ to what kind of Superhero you are to what vegetable you were in a former life to the quantity and color of mucus likely to be discharged with your next sneeze. Well, since it is apparent that no self-respecting blog can survive without a personalized quiz, I have come up with one of my own. Be forewarned that if you don’t forward this quiz to 124 of your closest nieces before the clock chimes midnight on the eve of your next birthday, you will be one year older without having heeded this warning.
QUIZ: What Type of Animal Lover Are you?
Select the answer below that BEST reflects yourself.
1. What is your preferred type of pet?
2. How many pets do you own?
e. More than 10
3. Where do you usually get your pets?
a. Only from the finest breeder
b. Well reputed pet stores
c. Classified ads, but only with proper papers
d. They followed me home and I kept them
e. That’s none of your business… You’re not a cop are you?
f. I already told you -- no pets here
4. Do you have names for all your pets?
5. What kind of names do you give your pets?
a. Descriptive, such as Fluffy, Gordo, Wiggles and Stinkslikesourmilk
b. Human names, such as Alice, Frank, Bob, George and Rodrigo
c. Titled names, such as Mr. Doodles, Senior Frenchie and Little Miss Poopsie
d. Traditional names, such as Rover and Spot
e. Creatively challenged names, such as dog, cat, snake, fish and heyyou
f. I still don’t have any pets
g. I have pets but don’t name them – it creates too close a bond and might be difficult to do what is necessary should my food storage ever run out while I am holed up in my basement waiting for the inevitable zombie uprising to end
6. In an emergency evacuation, if you had to choose exclusively between taking your pet(s) along or leaving them behind and saving personal memorabilia such as scrapbooks, photos, home videos, etc., which would you take?
b. Irreplaceable memorabilia
c. Someone else's pets
d. Someone else's memorabilia
7. How do you dispose of pets that have… um… passed on?
a. Full funeral with guests, songs and speakers
b. Small family gathering in the back yard
c. Facilities, such as vet or cremation
d. Brown box, big hole, done deal
e. Interring the earthly shell would interrupt the cycle of life – I leave them where they lie so the beauty of nature can take its course and renew life once again
f. Passed on? What are you talking about? My parents always told me my pets just “ran away” – although I did always wonder how goldie fish made it back to the ocean from Nebraska…
****Scroll Down to see your results****
If you answered all of the questions thoughtfully before reading the answers, you are the kind of animal lover that likes to take pointless quizzes that don’t tell you anything at all about anything at all except that you wasted valuable minutes of your life that you can never get back.
If you answered all of the questions quickly without giving them much if any thought, you are the kind of animal lover that is mildly interested in what might be interesting about this quiz… or you are just bored.
If you only read the questions and answers without bothering to make any selections, you are the kind of animal lover that doesn’t believe this quiz can tell you what kind of an animal lover you are but are curious enough to read on anyway.
If you didn’t take the quiz and just skipped right to the answers, you are the kind of animal lover that doesn’t like quizzes but somewhere deep down inside is hoping that there will be something worthwhile somewhere else in this blog.
If you read this just so you could make fun of those pathetic animal lovers out there, you are the kind of animal lover that is really more of an animal hater.
If you stopped reading as soon as you saw the word quiz, you are the kind of animal lover that didn’t read this sentence.
08 July 2007
30 June 2007
28 June 2007
Maybe if you stare really hard, everything will become clearer...
Then again, if you click on a picture and it opens into a new page and stare at the center for a minute or so, that might expose the true state of things...
But then again, maybe this never happened. Maybe I never did post something here. Maybe you never even visited this blog today to wonder whether or not something that may or may not be here is in fact here or if you are imagining it or just daydreaming about imagining what might happen if you imagined it.
Then again maybe not
not that it is not maybe that is the
the question at hand
hand it to you to figure it out
out of whatever you think may be
be hidden between the lines
lines that are hidden in plain view
view that you might see
see if you look beyond what is visible
visible if you look beyond what you see
see you soon or maybe later
later if my leave from absence is shortened a bit
bit sooner if it is extended
extended beyond what it is now
now I must go -- go if I was ever here now
05 April 2007
People who insist on this form of torture boil the hooves in a steaming cauldron of water. Boiling causes the hoof to take on an oily sheen and rubber-like quality. Eating rubbery hoof is like chewing a mix between abandoned retread from the highway and some sort of animal fat—greasy, stinky, and difficult to grind into smaller pieces. Since you cannot break the monstrosity into miniature demons, you are forced to swallow the nightmare whole. Swallowing a sizable piece inevitably induces the gag reflex at the back of the throat, and awakens vivid childhood memories of choking on marbles and slimy spit wads you inhaled while preparing to shoot. As the squishy intruder oozes down your throat and into your stomach, you get the distinct feeling that it will come out much the same way in the end. At this point, you feel a need to smile and show courteous gratitude to your eager-to-please hostess, and would do so were it not for the mountain of hoof still lying on your plate and jiggling like disturbed Jell-O. Jell-O—Did I mention that both Jell-O and marshmallows are made of cow hooves? Just add sugar and voilà—dessert! It’s amazing what a spoonful (or nine or ten) of sugar can do to make the cow hoof go down in a more desirable way.
01 April 2007
31 March 2007
1. Day-to-day I take it for granted that my cell phone will be on my person. Carrying it with me is nearly as unconscious as remembering to bring my left leg with me each morning.
2. If I do happen to misplace my cell phone I run around frantically searching for it as I would a severed finger so that it may be surgically reattached at the soonest possible moment.
3. When I am forced to leave my phone behind for whatever reason (e.g. when I am in a classified environment where no cell phones are allowed and I have forwarded my calls to a landline), I often have phantom cell phone vibrations and pat around my clothing for a bit looking for my cell phone before remembering it is no longer attached. This is akin to the stories people tell of having lost a leg in a freak ping-pong tournament accident and later having phantom itches in said missing appendage.
It is clear to me that my cell phone has in fact become an appendage of sorts. I guess this is my first step toward becoming a cyborg. Next I need a set of those glasses that have the miniature screens inside them and connect to the internet. Then I’ll build myself a spaceship shaped like a cube and run around “collecting” others to assimilate… oh wait, I think that’s been done already (was that Star Trek or Microsoft, or both?).
30 March 2007
Find a lamppost and stick your tongue to it. Next start screaming (as best you can with your tongue frozen to a lamppost) “Hwelf Mee! Hwelf Mee!” When a few thrill seekers finally show up to see what the commotion is all about, tear yourself away quickly so as to do maximum damage to your tongue (profuse bleeding is optimal). Have a friend with camera in hand ready to snap a few shots of the horrific sight and get names, addresses and phone numbers from witnesses to the travesty. Finally, backed by photos and eye-witnesses, sue the lamppost manufacturer for not inventing a compound that when thoroughly frozen still does not allow an unwary passerby’s tongue to become frozen to the exterior.
Do Scientific Research
Crack an egg on the sidewalk to see if it will cook once summer rolls around.
Impress Others with Your Mental Prowess
Attempt the winter equivalent of fire walking and brave the trek from your front door to the mailbox or trashcan in bare feet. You may find it helpful to think about being somewhere else like Hawaii, Texas, or even the Amazon (No, this won’t make you warmer, but frankly it’s just depressing to be really cold and still thinking about places like the North Pole, Alaska and Dakratland).
Make Fun of those Who Think They Have Mental Prowess
Watch television from inside the comfort of your apartment while thinking about your significant other who is outside walking in bare feet to the mailbox, and chuckle a bit (giggling is authorized for females only).
Remember the Good Ol’ Times, Back in the Day
Celebrate your grandfather’s birthday by walking to school/work in the snow with no shoes… uphill both ways. (Be wary of neighbors who may call the police thinking you’ve finally gone nuts.)
Do Something for the Neighborhood
Get a clipboard, pen and official looking hat (just the brim has to look semi-official as you can obscure the rest with the hood of your coat). Next, go door to door telling residents that you are sorry to inform them that due to increased demand the rate for natural gas will double starting next month. When they complain or start to question your legitimacy, politely tell them that you understand their concerns and unfortunately there is nothing you can do. Advise them to write their congressman (or woman, as the case may be) if they have any issues with the price increase.
Give Others Reason to Question your Sanity
Sit on your porch reading a Harry Potter novel with sunglasses and a Hawaiian T-Shirt. Invite passersby to join you for a glass of ice-cold lemonade.
Get Free Food
Google for anyone having a Wedding that day and crash it with the excuse that your car died and you can’t go back out into the cold… and by the way, will the friends and family luncheon start anytime soon?
Discover Hidden Talents
Tie your dogs to a sled and tell them to “mush.” See what happens next – do they have what it takes to compete in the World Cup dogsledding championship?
Save the World
First, using up all the snow in your yard, build the biggest snow fort you can and stockpile snowballs. Second, post a sign that reads, “The End is Near! Are you Ready?” Third, send a petition door to door pleading for all concerned parties to donate snow to the cause of ringing the neighborhood with a gigantic snow wall. Finally, don an authoritative looking hat and while feverishly popping up and down from inside your snow fort, cry out in doomsday tones, “The Eskimos are coming! The Eskimos are coming!” Pause every now and again to huddle in a corner and rock back and forth while crying, “Oh no, please not again…not again…why me? Why me?”
18 March 2007
Each ICBM in your arsenal is capable of carrying up to three thermonuclear warheads capable of inflicting terrible damage. Your mission is to defend the United States with safe, secure ICBMs ready to immediately put bombs on target. Day to day, this translates into working to maintain them in a constant state of readiness so as to deter any hostile forces who might hope to attack the United States or our allies and catch us unprepared to respond. However, should the need arise (heaven forbid) and you are issued the command to launch – you must be prepared in an instant to employ the most powerful weapon the U.S. has in its arsenal.
Understandably, the job comes with its share of stress. In order to alleviate some of this tension, allow me to suggest some harmless practical jokes you can play should you ever find yourself “pulling alert” in an LCC.
When it is your crew partner’s turn for crew rest (to sleep), gather their socks together, wet them and squeeze out as much of the water as possible before tossing them in the freezer. Just before waking them, remove the now rigid items from the freezer and return them to the place you found them. As a warning, make sure to do this only after you have finished your own sleep shift. With enough forethought, you could even buy some absolutely ridiculous looking socks before alert and offer them in place of the frozen ones. If you don’t mind delayed gratification, you can also try a different twist. This time after gathering their socks, powder the insides with Kool-Aid flavoring. Since the socks are black and the powder doesn’t change color until wetted, it won’t be until after arriving at home that the unwary soul finds their feet have turned a bright shade of red… or green, or blue, or yellow…
This one’s always good for a cheap laugh. Switch around the numbers on the dial pad for the phone – nothing too obvious, but something simple like reversing the order. Your intended victim may notice the discrepancy right away, but will still fumble around a bit before dialing the right number or having to replace them to their original locations.
Get some of those gag snakes that squish down rather flat and then “explode” out of their container when opened. These are endlessly entertaining and can be hid in places like the air regeneration unit, the emergency escape breathing apparatus container, or in that unobtrusive can marked “Chocolate Chip Cookies,” which you know will get opened while you are sleeping.
This one is an urban legend among missileers (those who pull missile alert duty), but could be pulled off with the right kind of coordination. Invite someone new to the facility but not a missileer (such as a new security forces member) down to the LCC for a quick tour. After closing the blast door behind them and beginning the tour, have your crew partner initiate an alarm and printer test from at the console. This will set off a set of audible and visual alarms while printing out a test sheet on the printer. Express concern about the alarms and run to check the printout with your crew partner. Explain to the visitor that you have just received an urgent message from headquarters which must be delivered immediately to another capsule.
Next begin strapping into your chairs (which are equipped with a four-point restraining system to keep you from being bounced around too much following a nuclear detonation) and tell him or her to sit down and hold on to something. Tell them that the LCC is on rails and in emergencies like this can travel through an underground tunnel to reach other predetermined locations throughout the missile field. Next close your emergency water shutoff valve (ESOV) which will make a satisfyingly loud “whump” sound. This is the cue for the person you have secreted outside the capsule to start pushing on the capsule, causing it to rock slightly back and forth (remember it is suspended from the ceiling). After doing this for a short time and pretending to track your movement on the computer screen, open the ESOVs again. This will produce a loud “whoosh” somewhat akin to air brakes.
Finally, tell the visitor that since you are not allowed to leave the capsule while on duty (which is true); you need them to run the message back topside (ground level) and give it to the flight security controller. Unbeknownst to the victim, while he was “touring” the LCC, the personnel topside were busy switching places from the day to night personnel and moving enough around site (including vehicles) to make it look like a different location (the fact that the buildings are all the same and the landscape is all flat is very helpful for this ruse). If all goes according to plan, the wide-eyed messenger will deliver the printout topside, and may even ask if he can get someone to give him a ride back to his station.
Hopefully these hints will help to jumpstart your creative juices; and who knows, you might be the next one to come up with a prank that will enter the realm of urban legends among those who work with nuclear weapons.
17 March 2007
You were born with a funny bone – two in fact. This fine and noble holiday is the perfect opportunity to put them to good use. After all, the question in your mind should not be whether or not to partake in the abundant festivities on April 1st and bask in its glorious mirth; but what prank you will perform and for whom you will devote such effort. Will your tomfoolery be of legendary caliber and inspire thousands of pranksters for years to come, or will you settle for one of the tried and true methods sure to bring a grimace to someone else’s face and a smile to yours?
Whatever direction you choose, be wary of straying off the pathway of humor and into the wastelands of cheesiness where you can languish for months without ever provoking a chuckle, a smirk or even a pity laugh. Worse yet, there are those who once upon an April Fool’s embarked on the blessed quest to earn the coveted of all responses – the belly laugh – only to find they had unintentionally, but irrevocably crossed the point of no-return into that land of “just not funny and in fact rather cruel.” Yes crusaders, heed the lesson to be learned from the unfortunate plight of one shunned by fellow comedian and potential fool alike – do not cross the line.
The Five Laws of the Joke
1. Consider well thy audience and prank accordingly.
2. Limitest thou the damage collateral.
3. Remember, cheesiness never was funniness.
4. Temper thine infliction of pain; for whilst discomfort of the temporary variety is well suited, anguish and humiliation for life are discouraged indeed.
5. Cause not thy victim to incur difficulty financial.
6. Understandest thou the principle of “what goes around comes around,” and with cheery heart taketh as thou givest.
I once read, “some people are like slinkies; not good for much, yet you can’t help but smile when you see them tumble down the stairs.”
15 March 2007
She simply replied, “Oh.” Then asked, “So are you going to try and grow one?” At which point she burst out in an uncontrollable fit of laughter, which I am sure woke at least one of our sleeping children.
Now, it’s not really my fault I can’t grow decent-looking facial hair (I blame it on being one small part Native American). Besides, I remind myself that Photoshop has helped me come to terms with the fact that even had I the ability to grow hair at the manliest rate possible, doing so would only make me look like a feral gerbil had taken up residence immediately below my nose.
Instead of communicating any of this to my loving wife (who at this point was still trembling enough from fits of laughter that she was very obviously trying to keep from peeing herself), I simply sighed and left it at that. After all, I had rather expected some such reaction from her, and considered myself fortunate that while she was on the subject of hair she didn’t take the opportunity to poke fun (as she often does) at the fact that my hairline is slowly receding. Yes, my hair is going the way of the dinosaur; retreating into the ether, never to be seen from again. Dinosaurs – no one is sure what happened to them, why they left, or how many there were to begin with (in fact, some people refuse to be convinced they ever existed at all). The only hard fact we have is that they are nowhere to be found now (unless you count some of their so-called “distant relatives,” but that’s like saying the increased growth in nose and ear hair we men get as we age makes up in some way for the lack of it up on top).
The bright side, and moral, of this story is that I have a wife to laugh at me. You see, she will not leave me for lack of hair. Nevertheless, I remain unconvinced that she would have been interested enough to marry me were I already in this downward spiral of uncontrollable molting. Yes, young men of the world, get married now while you still have a mane worthy of actually paying a professional to cut. If you wait until the day you step off the barber’s chair and look down at your cuttings only to realize the removal of such an embarrassingly small mass isn’t worth the $10 plus tip you are about to fork over; well, it just might be too late.
14 February 2007
While it is just an urban legend that super glue developed as an accidental solution to wounds in WWII, I have found that it is in fact most useful to me in a variety of bodily-mending ways. Consider the following:
A dab of super glue will reinforce a torn finger or toenail so that you stop catching it on everything and yelping for no obvious reason to passersby. One dab is usually all it takes until the nail grows out far enough to trim properly. And yes, by “trim” I mean hone down to appropriate shortness in a very manly fashion.
A thin line of super glue will close a cut and amazingly stop the pain as well (yes guys, I know you can handle the pain from a wimpy cut, but it’s equally manly to say, “yeah, I just threw some hydrogen peroxide in there and watched it bubble for a minute then slapped some super glue on – good as new).
If you are living with cracked heels due to poor maintenance, dry climate, or genetic reasons, super glue will mend together even the jagged Grand Canyon style crevices of the foot world.
I’m sure there are countless other ways to employ this wonderful compound, which is as universally handy as duct tape. Like the ancient Chinese proverb states, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it; and if duct tape or super glue can’t fix it, it ain’t broke.”
10 February 2007
The thought-provoking prowess of this word, when employed, will cause any but the most naïve to pause and ponder the veracity of the statement which it compliments, as well as the judgment of its speaker. Yes my friend, you would do well to be wary of the insatiable.
02 February 2007
Okay, I have been tagged by Nikki to list 5 totally random things about me that most people probably don’t know. So here goes… oh, and as a side note, I will not be “tagging” anyone else for this task – I don’t have enough friends to lose one or two this way.
1. During college I took a fencing class and near the end of the semester entered an area tournament in which I won third place.
2. I have an irrational fear of sharks (even though I have never been in the ocean, and was only on a beach once in my life). Sure, statistically I am more likely to get struck by a bolt of lightning on a clear day then get attacked by a shark; but the lightning isn’t sentient – it doesn’t care if it zaps me or the next-tallest thing around. Sharks on the other hand want to see if I taste good. What if I taste good?
3. I once played the role of a vicar in a theater production and spent most of the play running around in a pair of boxers and a wife-beater after an imposter clubbed me and stole my clothes – oh, and I wore black socks. Mustn’t forget the near knee-length black socks.
4. In my dreams if I fall off a tall building or cliff or some other such structure or am forced to jump for whatever reason, all I have to do is close my eyes and I will land safely at the bottom. This is quite handy for example when trying to evade the fearsome sharks that have somehow swam up to the top of an unmarked thirty-story building just to see whether or not you taste good.
5. While I have not yet found any grey hairs on my head, I do have one solitary grey nose hair that comes to visit every so often. The left nostril, if you really must know. And yes, that’s my left not yours. I have no idea how many grey nose-hairs you have in your left nostril, so why would you even think that was an option?
20 January 2007
G., my 3 year-old daughter, begs and begs for cuddles to fall asleep each night. Now what is wrong with honoring this innocent request you ask? Well, in truth there is absolutely nothing at all wrong with it – in fact it is wonderful. I would love to lay next to her every night and stare at her little face as her eyes flutter shut and her breathing slows to a calm melodic rhythm. Her peaceful sleeping countenance helps me remember what a sweet little girl she really is and all the crazy “terrible threes” moments from the day fade away into meaningless moments of the past. However, I also have five-year and seventeen-month-old sons who clamor just as loudly for my nighttime attention.
But I digress – this story is not about how to best divide ones attention and sleep-quota among three little ones; it is about one particular night just after I lay my head down next to G.’s on her pillow. My wonderful wife, Nikki, and I had just abandoned a much needed alone time on the couch to talk and eat raw vegetables dipped in tasty green onion dip (but not before munching a carrot or two). This said, as I looked at G., a disconcerted expression contorted her face. She waved her hand in front of her face in a manner that made me think she had hurt a finger and was about to ask for me to “kiss it better,” when she very seriously said, “Daddy, your air is yucky.” Hmmm… time to brush my teeth.
Now where did I put those tweezers...
Yesterday G. once again became disturbed when she looked up from where she sat in my lap reading books and observed, “Ooh daddy, you have hair in your nose – that so yucky.”
While I am not a pushover when it comes to disciplining my children, it is no secret that no one can put the fear of disobedience into them like my wife. Well, earlier today when G. was supposed to be napping, she snuck downstairs in hopes that we had forgotten it was naptime and she could resume playing like it had never happened. Since this certainly wasn’t the case, I scolded her for getting out of bed and told her to go back to her room. She planted her little feet and stubbornly told me that she had no intentions of doing any such thing. At that same moment Nikki glanced in G.’s bedroom in passing and not seeing the little sleeping lump she expected, called “G.?” Hearing this downstairs, G.’s resolve instantly dissolved as a wave of realization and trepidation swept across her face. She literally jumped at me trying to clamber into my arms as she desperately cried out, “Daddy, take me to my room! Take me to my room!” I can only imagine what fate she thought would befall her should her mother discover her escape.
To bite or not to bite -- That is the question
Today I gave G. a piece of spicy jalapeño cheese, warning her that it was “hot cheese,” but she was welcome to try it. After taking a bite and chewing it up she made a small rasping sound in the back of her throat and politely returned what remained of her slice to the plate. I asked her if she was done with it, to which she replied, “Yes. It is very much not good.” I glanced at Nikki who was trying to hide her quiet chuckling. Once composed, she asked G. if she wanted more cheese. “No,” G. replied. “It’s too hot. I have to wait for it to cool off.”