Friday, July 31, 2009

I'm Retarded and Don't Know How to Work the Scanner. Otherwise I'd Post Pictures

We were getting ready for tomorrow’s garage sale (please come overpay for our crap) when MJ found some old photos and we started reminiscing. They went way back. There was a picture of me holding Mr. Kitty and wearing a red bandana. MJ was shocked at how skinny I used to be. I was shocked that I thought wearing a red bandana made me look cool. I looked like a dork playing a pirate in a high school play, while holding a tuxedoed cat. I looked like I was the “tough” one in a boy band. Fortunately, there was only one photo of me in the bandana. Unfortunately there were a bunch of photos, which I had forgotten about, with me sporting a high top fade. That was the dumbest haircut ever, and I had one for almost four years. I paid the barber extra to do it. On the plus side for me, I never got the little dreads, but it was closer than I’d like to remember. The only reason I didn’t get some twists was because I saw The Last Boy Scout – great movie. The first Die Hard is the only thing Bruce Willis has done that’s better. I thought he and Damon Wayans were going to be the new Murphy and Nolte. Anyway, Damon Wayans has a shaved head with his football jersey number left on the back of his head in hair. That was what pushed me into getting my head shaved. That was the best hair decision I ever made, and not just because I avoided looking like some performance poet begging for a spot on Def Poetry Jam. That show would have been so much better if they had gotten rid of the wannabe Langston Hugheses and Maya Angelous and let Mos Def freestyle for thirty minutes every week. Shaving my head is cathartic. I don’t know why. I’ve kept my hair short for the last eighteen years. I wish I hadn’t looked up when The Last Boy Scout was released. I thought it had only been fourteen or fifteen years. Man, I’m old. But then I can’t believe the honeymoon photos that were in the bunch are seven years old. MJ thought about how different it was even then. We were looking at pictures from a disposable, under water camera that we had to drag to Target to get our pictures developed after we got back from the Caribbean. We had to wait more than a week from the time we took them to the time we could see them. Now it’s instantaneous and bad or unflattering pictures get deleted. Looking at our “bad” pictures today reminded me of how happy I’ve been for the past twenty years, but there’s still no excuse for a bandana or a fade.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

I Need To Be More Spartan.

I love where I live. I love the house. I love the neighborhood. I love the part of town I’m in. But one of the drawbacks to living in an old house is that it’s old. Our house was designed to keep water off our heads and not fall down. There’s no storage space. At least there’s not enough for all of our stuff. This is a generational thing. When this thing was built people didn’t have a bunch of crap. There was no thought given to where a television would fit because there were no such things as televisions. I’m giving away twenty-three shirts and it isn’t going to create any new space. We’re having a garage sale Saturday – another garage sale – to hopefully get rid of a bunch of stuff we don’t use and return to some type of order. A big part of the problem is how to dispose of electronic equipment when it stops working or becomes obsolete. We have fifteen years of computers, video game systems, video games, CD and DVD players, CD’s and DVD’s. What the hell am I supposed to do with our trillion disk changer, which was the bomb back in 1994, and the trillion CD’s that are filling it? What am I supposed to do with my laptop with the dead hard drive? Should I run a magnet over it in case some criminal finds it at the recycling center and fixes it? What about the ZIP drive and disks that are taking up space in the office? ZIP drives were the Betamaxes of the external storage race. That thing was useful for about two weeks and then the jump drive hit the market. Our DVD players are all dying and we’re left with the choices of replacing them with new DVD players, which are cheap, not replacing them at all, which is even cheaper, or making the inevitable jump to Blu-Ray now instead of later, which isn’t cheap at all. I’m at the point of let’s burn the house to the ground and start all over. You don’t think the fire inspector will find it suspicious that the brand new tankless water heaters were removed before the faulty wiring started the blaze? I’m chalking it up to providence.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

#2 On Straight Outta Compton

It’s seven o’clock in the morning and I didn’t sleep well last night. I completely freaked out about my qualifications as a dad, and that kept me up. I watched some Tony Bourdain and some West Wing, and at dawn I overdosed on the Henry Gates thing. Cops are evil, all of them. That’s not true, but as a Black male – no longer young Black male, yay I win – it’s a safe operating assumption. I’ve known five people that have become cops, all men, all violent action junkies. One of them was a very good car thief when he was a teen. Another was a very bad drug dealer. I don’t care about racist cops. Politics don’t mean anything when it comes to doing a job well. Wolfgang Puck may be a Holocaust denier, but that doesn’t mean he can’t cook – even latkes. I don’t think Chef Puck is a Nazi, but his ethnicity made for a nice sentence. I do care about being professional. Just do your job, and part of that job is taking crap from unhappy citizens. I’ve seen white males rage at cops and seen the cops ignore it, while they frisked the compliant and respectful me. I was in the passenger seat with a buddy in high school who was pulled over for doing eighty – EIGHT ZERO – in a thirty-five. The cop asked the driver, “Guess why I pulled you over?!?” trying to be witty I guess, and the driver responded deadpan, “Cuz yer a dick?” There was a lecture, a written warning, and a 9mm under the driver’s seat. There wasn’t a car search… for driving eighty in a thirty-five. I’ve gotten three moving violations in my life. They all happened within six months of each other. One was legitimate. I wrecked my aunt’s Pontiac 1000. The others were differing degrees of the same unwritten offense. I was ticketed for driving thirty-five in a forty-five – aka driving while Black in the wrong neighborhood – and I’m not dyslexic. I was also ticketed for reckless driving – aka driving while Black with a hot White chick in the wrong neighborhood. Barney Fife pointed a gun at me in the last case. I have a bunch of examples from my own personal experience of stuff like this, but my point is that, in my experience, cops are unprofessional. I mentioned four examples, and in three of those examples the cop did nothing but make the situation worse. Cory, the driver, learned there are no consequences for cocky Murray Hill rednecks. LJ went on to become another angry guy with dark skin. Like I said, cops may not all be evil, but if you’re male and you fail the brown paper bag test, it’s a safe assumption.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

All Bad Poetry Springs From Genuine Feeling

I had a really boring chest and biceps workout today so I’m going to write about a few movie quotes that I like.

I’m a mushroom cloud laying muthaf**ka, muthaf**ka! This is from Pulp Fiction, which is so full of great quotes it may be the only movie to make the list today. Jules says this to Vincent as they’re cleaning Marvin’s brains out of the backseat of Jules’s car. Jules is berating Vincent for shooting Marvin in the face when Vincent reaches his boiling point and tells Jules that “[He] could blow”. Jules barely takes a breath before uttering the above quote. It’s the second muthaf**ka that makes it great, and one of the few times that the Al Pacino/Chewbacca/Samuel L. Jackson method of screaming all one’s lines works.

Someplace warm. A place where the beer flows like wine. Where beautiful women instinctively flock like the salmon of Capistrano. I'm talking about a little place called Aspen. This is from Dumb & Dumber and it basically sums up the whole movie. It’s by far Jim Carrey’s best work. The Farrelly brothers just let him do his thing, and Jeff Daniels didn’t try to compete with him. This quote is Lloyd selling Harry on the idea of leaving Providence, Rhode Island and heading to Aspen, Colorado. There’s so much wrong with his little spiel, but it’s not what you say, it’s how you say it, and Lloyd sold it. I laughed harder at this movie than I did at anything not done by the Marx Brothers.

Consider that a divorce. This is from Total Recall and it’s Arnold’s best post-ending-someone’s-life-violently one liner. He can’t act, which is what makes him so great. And he’s been here for thirty-five years, why is his accent still so thick? He’d been brainwashed to believe that Sharon Stone was his wife, and then she tried to kill him and his Mexican hooker girlfriend, Melina. After dispatching Sharon’s henchmen, he gets the drop on her as she’s beating Melina’s ass. She says, “You wouldn’t kill me would you, Doug? We’re married.” He puts a bullet in her head and then drops the line. This was also right before Sharon Stone did Basic Instinct, became a star, and lost her mind. She looked her best and gave her best performance in Total Recall. It’s also Paul Verhoeven’s best movie. They need to redo this movie, along with Robocop, with new special effects.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Exercise and Diet Notes.

No more speed work until I’m under two bills. I’ve set a weight goal for myself, and while I’m off to a good start, I have a very long way to go. 190 lbs. isn’t over the horizon but it’s not easy to see right now. I went for a run this morning and was feeling good so I decided to sprint my lap around the circle at Memorial Park and sprint on the straightaway along the river. Now it’s fourteen hours later and my ankles, hips, lower back, and lower abdominals are giving me problems. Strangely, my shins and calves don’t hurt – yet. I guess I’m too heavy to sprint on concrete and asphalt. It looks cool on my Garmin stats to see high speeds but my body just can’t take it. Oh well, there’s nothing wrong with puttering around like I’m seventy, at least until I’ve dropped some more weight. I did enough damage this morning that I doubt I’ll run for the rest of the week, which means I’ll be spending time on the elliptical machine. At this point calories are calories. I may mix in some time in the swimming pool, but it’s such a hassle bringing a change of clothes and avoiding the cornucopia of fungi, molds, and bacteria that coat the YMCA locker room floor. I feel much more comfortable, from an infection stand point, swimming in the ocean on the weekends. I’m picking the drowning poison over the infectious disease poison. Until then, it’s old school weights and cardio. I’m going to be extra prima sore this week. I haven’t lifted in two or three weeks. I could check my blog posts, but I don’t want to get depressed. On the positive side, my dieting is going very well. Thanks in part to some world class blueberries. I don’t know what it is about the current crop at Publix, but they’re like candy. I’m also fitting into more of my clothes, which is encouraging. I’m looking forward to tomorrow.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

All It Takes Is a Week

We went on a family bike ride this morning to the YMCA. I hadn’t exercised in a week and I could tell the moment I started to pedal. It always amazes me how fast the body starts to atrophy. It was a frickin’ week and it’s not like I’m Lance Armstrong trying to climb the Pyrenees. Most of the trip there was down hill, but my legs were burning anyway. It’s not that I took the week off. It’s that last week was one of those busy ones that get rolling on Monday morning and the next thing I know it’s Sunday afternoon and my legs are burning. Even though the ride was harder than I expected we had fun. MJ decided to bring a Frisbee so we would have something to do once we got to the Y. She throws a Frisbee almost as well as I sing. She brought it along because she thought LMJ would enjoy playing with it outside as much as she does inside. But we don’t have giant light posts at home to climb, so the Frisbee was almost totally ignored by the baby girl. I had fun throwing it way up into the air and trying to chase it down. I don’t know if it’s because I’m old or because I’m fat or a combination of the two, but I can’t cover ground the way I used to. I’m also unwilling to dive in the dirt. There were a couple of tosses that I could have caught if I had been willing to get dirty. I guess those days are gone. We played Frisbee for about ten minutes and then some landscaping chick/dude came by and told us (s)he would be mowing in about twenty minutes so we packed up our stuff and headed to the Times-Union helipad to watch a train cross the river. It took forever, which worked out – not just for the rest – because a big sailboat had pull up short to avoid running into the bridge. It wasn’t a close thing, but it was cool anyway. MJ almost got run over a couple of times on the way back, but we made it home just fine – except for my soon-to-be-sore legs.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

When Did Professionalism Die?

Today felt like a Sunday even though it was a Saturday. We cleaned house this morning and I gave twenty-three shirts to Goodwill. MJ doesn’t think I can value them at $50 a piece for tax purposes. I’m doing it anyway. A few of them are Ralph Lauren and more than a few are very rare race t-shirts. I don’t think the IRS will come after me for eleven hundred bucks. It’s not cost effective. Maybe my aggressive tax avoidance is giving me bad karma because we’re having problems with our new water heaters. We think the plumbers did something wrong because they’re plumbers. It seems that there’s not enough water flow going through the heater so it shuts down to prevent overheating and we’re getting hot-cold-hot showers. It’s not a big deal right now during the dog days, but it will be huge frickin’ deal in December. A crappy water heater is what caused Charles Whitman to climb a bell tower with his rifle. Unfortunately, the water heaters aren’t the only things the plumbers screwed up. They forgot to turn off the water when they started taking out the old water heater and sprayed water all over the attic. We found this out last night when MJ looked up and saw a huge water stain on the kitchen ceiling. It’s almost like this guy is trying to wear us down with his incompetence. Now that’s going to have to be cut out and redone. These home repairs have been nothing but the exact nightmare we were afraid of. Why can’t anyone just do what they’re supposed to do? What’s wrong with doing a good a job and paying attention to detail? If I don’t pay attention to detail I get sued. I know a guy who spent the last twenty years saving up for his dream home, and the last thing he did before he broke ground was get his general contractor’s license because he knew he couldn’t trust anyone to do what he wanted. I think he was on to something. I’m enrolling CG in classes at FCCJ as we speak. Whoops! CG? I’m enrolling you in some classes at FCCJ.

Friday, July 24, 2009

The New Harry Potter Movie

MJ and I took in a matinee. We went and saw the new Harry Potter. It was the best movie of the set so far. Even though the Stathe wasn’t in it, they clearly filmed it somewhere near him. That’s the only explanation for the new levels of cool. They did a really good job of getting all the ideas of the Half-blood Prince story into the movie, which is impressive because it’s more than six hundred pages. They also did a really good job of making Hogwarts feel like a high school, since that’s what it is. I guess the fifth movie, Order of the Phoenix, wasn’t very good because I don’t remember anything about it. I think we own it, and we’ll probably watch it now that we’re all Harry Potter’d up. What’s shocking is how much all of the kids have grown up. They’re all in their twenties. That’s crazy. I watched part of the very first Harry Potter movie a couple of weeks ago and they hadn’t even reached puberty. Now they’re making shaving jokes. Everyone is also in love, which doesn’t quite work in the movie the same way it did in the book. In the book, Hermione is a plain little book worm. In the movie, Emma Watson is anything but plain, so the rivalries don’t quite come across as believable, but there’s nothing they can do about that. They also can’t make Daniel Radcliffe, Harry, and taller. He’s suffering from a severe case of Tom Cruise and Dustin Hoffman short guy syndrome. The fact that casting choices made eight years ago are presenting minor cosmetic anomalies are the only problems I have with the movie lets me know it was very good. MJ and I saw it in San Marco and we thought about stopping in Five Points on the way home to see it again. It’s a good thing I had to pee.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

The Stathe

MJ and CG went to see Up this afternoon while I watched the baby girl. MJ came back with a glowing review. Blah blah blah touching. Blah blah blah not a kids movie. Blah blah blah why can’t all movies be Pixar movies? Unfortunately, the movie failed my one basic movie test, is Jason Statham in it? No Stathe, no watch. Actually, this is more of a guideline than a rule, but it’s there none the less. I’m old and I don’t care anymore. I’m married so I don’t have to impress anyone anymore. Ergo if I’m going to pay money to see a movie then the Stathe better be in it. Jason Statham is basically a 21st century English Chuck Norris without the stupid political views or facial hair. What I like about his movies is that I know exactly what I’m getting: Cockney accent? Check. Black belt? Check. Hot chicks getting naked? Check. That’s worth my $9. Patton Oswalt put it best, “Statham will f**k an explosion while a Slayer song plays for my $9!” Exactly. As I think about it, he’s not like an English Chuck Norris. He’s like an English Sean Connery. It didn’t matter when Connery played a Russian captain with a Scottish accent, and it’s not going to matter when the Stathe plays Martin Luther King as if he grew up in the East End of London. The only problem they’re having is finding someone who’s not afraid to play James Earl Ray. The word around the campfire is that he killed fifteen stuntmen on the set of the movie for pointing a gun at him. If you haven’t seen any of Jason Statham’s films then you should update your Netflix queue right now. I recommend Lock, Stock, & 2 Smoking Barrels, Snatch, The Transporter, The Italian Job, and Crank. Pixar would make a movie about the Stathe but they don’t have enough pixels.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Not Bad for a Hump Day

I had a pretty good day. I got an hour of continuing education, which included a free lunch at Maggianos. The Lincoln wholesaler went family style with some kind of mushrooms and penne along with lasagna. There was salad but no app. I got my grub on, but didn’t pig out, staying true to my diet, which was a bit of a miracle, especially when the desserts arrived. He chose some kind of ice cream thing that I skipped – lactose intolerance – and some kind of chocolate cake with chocolate frosting that I didn't skip. And best of all, I got home just as the plumbers/workmen were finishing with their heavy lifting. I never thought I’d be excited about doing laundry, but after a couple of weeks doing the European thing I was ecstatic. We have a new high efficiency washer, and we were all surprised that it actually seems to be high efficiency. The thing uses about a teaspoon of water to clean twenty pounds of laundry. I didn’t think it was possible but our first load is done and the laundry is clean. Now we can’t wait for the next electric/water bill so we can see just how much money we’re saving. If it’s not a bunch we’re going to be pissed. We stank for a month so we could reduce our expenses a lot more than our carbon footprint. F**k Mother Earth. She’s going to be here a lot longer than I am, and she tried to kill me yesterday with some kind of leviathan. I’m not cut out for being dirty. I could never be a hippie. I’m not a germ-a-phobe, but I do not like being greasy. I’ve quit exercising because I couldn’t do laundry. I didn’t want to the whole house to smell like a gym. Now all of that is over. I can make up with Gaea and get back to writing posts about trying to commit suicide by heatstroke.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Maybe I Should Take Up Poker Instead of Triathlons

Swimming in the ocean is hard. Humans really weren’t built for it. Sure, staying afloat isn’t difficult, but making any kind of steady progress toward where you want to go is almost totally up to the sea, especially if you’re swimming away from shore. This part of the Atlantic is mild compared to most of the rest of the world, but getting out past these itty bitty four foot breakers is frickin’ hard. I can imagine what the Pacific in Hawaii is going to be like when I do the Ironman. I’m glad I’m failing on something easy so I know just how far I have to go, I think. Another problem I’m having is that the waves stir up a bunch of sand and sediment so I can’t see anything, even with goggles. I suppose I have to swim about fifty meters off shore to where the water is a clear green instead of a murky brown, but that’s what’s called “open ocean” where drowning moves from a possibility to a likelihood. Mostly because the ocean floor is about forty feet deep, but there’s also the danger of… oh what are those things called… I’m drawing a blank… oh yeah, sharks. I’ve talked to more than one sailor who flies in the big HS-60 helicopters that patrol the coast, and each one has talked about how there are schools of sharks right behind the surfers, and how none of these sailors will ever get in the ocean unless ordered to. But no guts no glory, and supposedly sharks don’t attack human swimmers because human swimmers don’t swim like seals or fish. I guess there’s no challenge in it. It’s like shooting fish in a barrel to them. I say no guts no glory now, but earlier today something brushed against my leg while I was swimming in the shallows and I got out of the water as quickly as I could, then stayed out for at least half an hour because I was sure that whatever bumped my leg was some kind of sea monster and it was waiting for me to get back in. Do they still make shark repellent?

Monday, July 20, 2009

A Friend of LJ.

I’ve been drinking a lot of coffee recently. It’s not that I’ve been trying to stay awake. It’s that I like coffee. I hadn’t realized how much I’d been drinking until late this morning when my skull exploded. I was in a hurry this morning and skipped my fix two cups. I didn’t know what the hell the problem was until about noon. MJ also had a headache – at least that’s what she told me – and the barometer is low, so I chalked my headache up to the weather. I was about to get a bite to eat when everything fell into place. I was deciding between a caffeine free Sprite or a loaded with caffeine Dr. Pepper. That’s when I remembered I had rushed out of the house without having coffee. I skipped both those candy ass beverages and upgraded to forty ounces of Diet Mountain Dew – the breakfast of champions. They should start selling straight adrenaline over the counter. I’m seeing vapor trails right now and I can move things with my mind, but at least the bass drum throbbing in the back of my head and neck is starting to subside. I’m in that post headache afterglow where it’s not completely gone but it’s diminished to the point that, even though I’m not 100%, the memory of the previous pain makes me glad that it’s gone. Unfortunately, this means I have to adjust my caffeine intake. I’m going to have to cut down to one cup of half caff in the morning and then decaf for the rest of the day. I hate being controlled by anything, especially a drug. On the plus side we may be able to get our Starbucks monthly bill down under a thousand dollars. I have no idea how we spend so much money there, but we do. Maybe I should start Caffeine-a-holics Anonymous. Instead of serving coffee like the rest of the twelve steppers do, I’ll serve beer. Yeah, I think I’m on to something.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

100% Being Dad Day

MJ wrote a little bit about the baby girl’s first splinter. I got it out with some tweezers. LMJ was oblivious to the whole thing. She knows we told her she had a splinter, she may have even seen the splinter, but she wasn’t affected by the splinter in the least. It seems to have gotten under the first layer of skin but didn’t penetrate any deeper. She sat still for her surgery like a champ. She didn’t complain at all. I thought I was squeezing her finger kind of hard, but she never made a peep. She was much more interested in explaining that her kitty is a tiger – roaarrr!!! Removing the splinter made me feel like a dad, and that’s a top notch feeling.

LMJ also encountered other kids today and got teased by one for the first time. We went to Barnes & Noble and the train set in the children’s section was full of three and four year old boys. LMJ wanted to play too, but was a little bit hesitant. I’m always stuck in these situations. Part of me wants to push her into the mosh pit and tell her to stand up for herself, and part of me wants to get her out of there so she doesn’t have to deal with stupid little boys. I know both of those are wrong for her at age two, but the right thing to do, letting her fend for herself on her own terms, is excruciating. She stood on the outside for a long time just watching, and when it was her turn with the train car she wasn’t intimidated at all. She even played longer than she really wanted to because she didn’t want to give up her rightfully earned spot to one of the little chimps flailing around. We’re on the right path. Her second encounter was at the park where a little boy who was three or four was playing on one of the jungle gyms. He was nice at first. I think he wanted to play with LMJ, but she was staring him down. I guess when he figured she wasn’t going to play with him, he stuck his tongue out and teased “Nyah-nyah-nyah-nyah-nyah” twice and went down the sliding board. LMJ just looked at him like he had rabies, which was fine with me. I really have no idea how I’m going to let her go to nursery school. Hopefully, the My Gym sessions will ease her mother and me into an emotional place where that can happen.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

My Back

The interweb in general and Facebook in particular are killing me. We had to rearrange some furniture so the plumbers and their helpers would have room to do what they needed to do. As an unforeseen result, I wound up not having a chair with a back to sit in while I surfed the net. I woke up Friday morning six feet tall with a healthy back. I woke up Saturday morning five foot six with scoliosis and four bulging disks. I was uncomfortable the whole time I was on my computer, but it didn’t slow me down. I had to play Mob Wars and keep abreast of all the celebrity gossip. Emma Watson is going to Brown, in case you didn’t know. Go Bears. I did absolutely nothing positive or constructive while I sat there ruining my back, but I sat there anyway. Why, for who, for what? I don’t think I’d be as upset if it was only me that was stupid, but I know I am a reflection of society. I don’t spend anywhere near the amount of time on Facebook as a bunch of my friends, but I know I spend way too much. I don’t do Twitter at all and that’s still way too much time. This is how bad I am, or how bad television has become. I could have gotten up off the ottoman I was sitting on, turned around, sat in the chair that accompanies the ottoman, and watched television very comfortably. Basically, I decided that cocaine is too old school and won’t make my teeth fall out. I’d rather go with the crystal meth. My back hurt so bad I just floated in the ocean hoping to get some approximation of the Dead Sea effect, and when we went to the Riverside Arts Market I seriously considered ignoring the thoughts of the people who’ve sat in the massage chair sweating into that face ring thing and almost got a massage. I would have but it was about fifteen minutes before the whole thing shut down, and there was already someone ahead of me wiping their fungus onto the pleather. I have to figure out a way to fit some yoga into my life.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Sometimes The Poetry Is Created In The Translation

Directions, instructions, the owner’s manual, call them whatever you want to call them, just like the Bible, they weren’t written in English. At least that’s the way it is with the crap we buy. Our brand new washer and dryer arrived yesterday, and I’m going to quote some of the troubleshooting bullet points.

· The half of laundry (8lbs) water usage is about 18 liter.
· The water usage is about 50 liter until from washing to 2 rinsing.
· When washing big bulky items that occur noise/vibration or damaged laundry.
· The blanket must put below 3.5 kg and one sheet in washing machine.
· Rugs can bring unbalance and cannot be used.

Um, okay. I guess I should be happy that they tried, if by trying I mean writing some stuff in Japanese and then copying and pasting it into Google translate. I doubt they could decipher the Roman alphabet after the translation so they went with whatever the Japanese equivalent of f**k it is and hit print. That’s what I would have done if the roles were reversed. Google changes alphabets when necessary, which is cool if proofreading isn’t important. They’re still better than IKEA, who feel a picture is worth 1000 words and 1000 words are all you need to build a working space shuttle. I don’t even thing IKEA furniture comes with their picture directions anymore. I think they make you print them off the internet. The guy who delivered the new appliances was not interested in hanging around. We were at a bit of an impasse about how to get the old washer out to make room for the new. Grammy and I broke out slide rules and graphing calculators. The guy from Sears’s first idea – and the one we went with – was take the door off the hinges. That is something I wish I had thought of fifteen years ago. Bold and simple gets stuff done. I think that’s Ockham’s razor. Unfortunately, the gas hasn’t been turned on and the tumbler in the washer is locked tight so it won’t break when it’s moved, so we have two perfectly good washers and two perfectly good dryers, yet we’re probably going to the Laundromat tomorrow for the first time in almost twenty years. Irony.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

I'm Trying To Save Lives or What Would Sinatra Do?

I remember a corporate thing Waddell & Reed had when I was there at some golf resort in Tampa. It was about ten o’clock in the morning and someone from Kansas was telling us something about something. I don’t really know because the bar was open. I was only at the bar because my buddy Dan came and got me… and they were serving beer. He had to show me this bartender. She was, by far, the most beautiful bartender I’ve ever seen. Then she started talking, and the spell was broken. She was twenty-two. She was going to whatever the community college is in Tampa, FCCJ Ybor City I think. She told me she drank rum and coke instead of beer because a shot of rum has fewer calories than a beer. She was hot enough for me to listen to her for about a half an hour, and then I couldn’t take it anymore and left. I tell that story because I don’t understand retired athletes dating/marrying waitresses, strippers, and flight attendants. Arturo Gatti, a 37 year old retired millionaire boxer, joined Steve McNair, a 36 year old retired millionaire football player, on the list of dumbasses that got killed in their sleep in the last two weeks by women they were lying to under the age of 24. I understand knowing them biblically. That’s nature. I don’t understand knowing them personally. That’s dumb. I don’t understand how McNair and Gatti came to the conclusion that a relationship with a woman fifteen years younger than them was a good idea. And clearly it wasn’t because they’re both dead. What would a millionaire in his mid-thirties talk to a Dave & Buster’s waitress about on a date? So, do you prefer the carnival games or the video games? Do you get free unlimited D&B cards as a fringe benefit? You know, being a quarterback in the NFL is just like waiting tables at a bar/arcade. They’re both jobs where you have to deal with people. I give the women a pass on a lot of this. They’re children. They’re children who think they’ve found their soul mates and won the lottery at the same time. Then the grown men, who could have gotten what they wanted without lying, say PSYCH! Naw baby, that was just pillow talk. Fatal Attraction and the scene in Goodfellas where Karen sticks a gun in Henry’s face because he won’t stop cheating on her should be shown in IMAX to professional athletes every time they cash a million dollar check.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

The Truth Is Out There

I watched ^^^ this dude half-ass his way to a 13:05 5000 meters last night. I don’t know if I’m encouraged or discouraged. 5000 meters is generally around a track, while a 5k is generally a road race – same distance, different courses. That’s just a point of clarification for the track jargon. The commentators spent the whole thirteen minutes talking about how slow the pace was, and that most of the guys running had just started speed work for this season. What the hell? I’ve run sub twenty-seven minutes at this distance twice in my life, and both times I nearly died. I also didn’t have to deal with the regular curves that come up on a track every hundred yards or so. These guys were running more than twice as fast as me while they work themselves back into real race shape. I can run 400 meters at that pace, but I can’t run 800. Watching these guys run makes me wonder if we’re the same species. The guy in the picture is Kenenisa Bekele. He’s from Ethiopia. He holds the world records at 5000 and 10000 meters. As I’m looking up stuff about distance running records, the species joke a few sentences back is becoming less and less of a joke. His 5000 meter (12:37.35) record is 21 seconds faster than the American record (12:58.21). So this guy finished while the fastest American ever, Bob Kennedy, would have barely been more than half way through his last lap. There have been exactly three non-Africans in the history of the world to run a sub thirteen minute 5000 meters. Battlestar Galactica ended with the Cylon/human hybrid baby being Mitochondrial Eve, who lived and died in, wait for it, Ethiopia. Now I’m just getting freaked out. I started this post as a quasi-self-motivational thing to get me to train harder, but now I’m starting to think the writers on BSG know something and this Bekele character is a frackin’ toaster. This is going to haunt me for a while.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

This is How We Do It In Duval.

After a long boring day at work I came home to an affectionate baby girl, which made the world okay again. I gave Mama a little bit of a break and played and danced to Mickey Mouse with LMJ. As we were bouncing around and exercising, she flew into some kind of soliloquy about the camera on the dresser and taking pictures with it. I was dumbfounded. Somewhere in the last week or so, maybe Mama knows more precisely, LMJ started talking, as opposed to just saying words. It seems like last week she would say, “Go…ina…kitchen” and that would be that until we were in the kitchen, but tonight she cut through all the BS and said, “Go ina kitchen get Grammy’s chocolate pudding”. She still sounds like she learned English from a Greek in China but it gets better every day, and she’s cute. She’s also started pretending to read books, finishing them with “The End”. This is a bittersweet time for me because the only baby thing she still does is wear diapers. Everything else is executive little girl. I also have mixed emotions because I have to be ever more careful about what I say. She’s stifling my wit. She’s taking to Ebonics more readily than Spanish, although her favorite Sesame Street segments right now are the ones with Big Bird interacting con los Latinos. Saturday I was taking her downstairs to go play in the backyard and said, “Mama, we findta go play in the backyard” and for the first time ever LMJ called her mama Mama. I was happy. “We findta go” will be part of her lexicon before she’s three, along with “y’all”. Her mother is already teaching her how to play dominos, and it’s also getting close to the time to introduce her to the wonder that is fried chicken wings. If I can get the question, “Where y’all put them chicken wings at?” out of her before she goes off to kindergarten I think it will be worth the beating I’ll take from her mother and her grandmothers. I don’t have to worry about Granddad. He’ll just take it as an honest question that he’d like the answer to as well.

Monday, July 13, 2009

A FINRA Kind of Day

Monday wasn't as much fun as the weekend. I spent the morning at the Sylvan learning center learning that I’m not supposed to help people launder money or trade on inside information. Once every three years – used to be every two – I have to watch bad actors on cheap sets run through ridiculous scenarios and chew scenery. The only high point was that I recognized one of the actors. I guess these videos are pretty old because Aiden Gillen, who played Mayor Tommy Carcetti on The Wire, was one of the leads in a group of the videos about ethics. His were the first group of videos so I spent the entire three hour session trying to figure out who he was. It didn’t hit me until about 4 o’clock this afternoon. Now I can’t remember what made it click, but that’s not important. I get frustrated at these continuing education things, but I guess they’re necessary – Martha Stewart. I just don’t like driving out to Mandarin. I don’t know anything about that side of town so I went the wrong way. I was almost to Switzerland – the unincorporated area of North Florida, not the glorified DMZ between France and Germany – before I called MJ to help me. It was a good thing I left as early as I did. After the fun filled morning, I got an email from work telling me that auditors wanted more details about some transactions in my bank statements. They’re f**king with me about a $2,500.00 deposit and a $63.90 deposit. These are the same people who ignored specific investor requests over the last ten years to pay more attention to Bernie Madoff and his transactions. I don’t know exactly how much money he stole, but I think it was a little bit more than $2563.90. These are the same people who paid absolutely no attention to the largest financial companies in the world completely ignoring their fiduciary responsibilities as they dove head first into the CMO debacle. But I have to come up with documentation about Lincoln’s bad bookkeeping and a check from my wife. It is so hard for me not to have a bad attitude about this. My compliance officer doesn’t like it when I make the joke that if we kill enough auditors then eventually they’ll stop coming around, everyone else I work with thinks it’s the funniest thing they’ve ever heard.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

I Still Need $850,000

This was a bit of a backward Sunday. We woke up early – too early for Daddy. Daddy stayed up until about 1 a.m. to see the main event of UFC 100. Brock Lesnar beat Frank Mir for the heavyweight championship. I was rooting for Mir, but oh well. We had a blueberry pancake and scrambled eggs breakfast, which was delicious, and then we spent the morning cleaning. We’re still trying to get resettled from the destruction unleashed by the plumbers. My parents stopped by for their weekly visit on the way home from church and we discussed Harry Potter and how incredibly bad golf is on television, among other things. Then CG made some sandwiches to go along with the goldfish and we went to the beach. We were having a blast – as per usual – when some people who were clearly from out of town opened up a loaf of Autumn Grain and started feeding the seagulls. Who the hell does that? They’re sky rats. How is it possible that anyone doesn’t know this? They had kids with them ranging in age from about six to about thirteen, which means they must have seen Finding Nemo somewhere along the way. Don’t they remember the Seagulls obnoxiously screaming mine, mine, mine and chasing anything that slightly resembled food as a flock? Even if they haven’t seen it, which is a near impossibility, there are signs all over the beach saying don’t litter, and I’m pretty sure when the pieces of bread that the gulls didn’t grab out of midair hit the ground they, by definition, became litter. Where were the beach police? Would it have been bad form for me to call 911? I figure these people were probably very nice people, who just didn’t know any better, but ignorance of the beach law is no beach defense, and when I’m mayor of Atlantic Beach I’m going to make sure the penalty for feeding the seagulls is stiffer than it is right now. But I have to be a resident first, so I’m going to need a beach house.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

I Need $850,000

I can’t decide if the beach is better in the morning or the evening. We got to the beach this afternoon at about 5pm and had a blast. The rising sun in the morning lets us know when it’s time to leave as it gets more and more intense, but the setting sun is a much lower risk for skin cancer. I think the early day is the time for the townies – people from the city – while the late afternoon is for the locals. Each time of day has its own feel and buzz. I like both of them. They both make me want to buy a beach house. The early morning beach makes me want a beach house because then I wouldn’t have to get out of bed quite so early. I could even wake up, watch the sunrise, and go back to bed. The late afternoon beach makes me want a beach house because of the excitement of the beach nightlife gearing up. As usual, the tide was out when we got there today – way to keep up with tides MJ – which makes me think it might not be the time of day but the time of tide that might be the deciding factor in how much fun we have. At low tide there’s more beach, more space for LMJ to play, and less worry about a baby girl drowning thanks to tidal pools. Tonight had a bit of an old school feel because I made sandwiches. We packed a picnic because dinner becomes a problem when we leave the beach after seven. It’s LMJ’s bedtime when we finally make it home, nobody wants to cook that late, and she certainly doesn’t want to wait for something to be cooked that late. Toddlers get cranky when they’re tired and hungry. That’s hard science. Plus, it’s almost a rite of passage for LMJ to stuff Doritos into her face on the beach. Watching her get shoulder deep into the bag is hilarious. I don’t know if it’s a fatherhood thing, but I’ve lived here for twenty-eight years and I love the beach more now than I ever have. I have to start working harder.

Friday, July 10, 2009

I Might Want to Mix In Some Veggies at Some Point

I was going to write about the political stuff from all over the place coalescing in my mind, but I decided against it. Instead I’m going to drone on about my day. Today was a pretty good Friday. I wasn’t real happy about going into work, but a guy from ING brought Quiznos, and free sandwiches that someone else made are one of life’s great pleasures. I’ll listen politely to just about anything if I get a free food. “Yeah, the Holocaust was just a lie the Democrats cooked up to get Obama elected. Sure, why not? Is there another bacon and smoked turkey in that pile?” I came home after the lunch, and the family went to the duck pond to feed the fowl. We timed it almost perfectly. There were about four families with siblings and possibly cousins leaving right as we showed up. We pretty much had the entire park to ourselves, and I saw something I had never seen before. The ducks were full. They weren’t really interested in our stale bread and graham crackers. I’ve been going to this duck pond since 1981 and I’ve never seen them ignore food. Normally, they act like 45 pound piranha chasing the bread people throw in. And yes, they weigh at least 45 pounds, hollow bones and all. These ducks are morbidly obese. The only way these ducks could get off the ground is if Grumman and McDonnell-Douglas both got involved. Feeding the ducks wasn’t as exciting for LMJ since they’d already eaten, but at least the turtles got a turn. Then we ran around the park to the jungle gyms, following LMJ as she screamed, “Come on, guys!!!” over and over. She was really excited to be free. After the park we came home and I cooked knockwursts and sauerkraut. Sauerkraut is not an indoor food. The little light on the stove telling me it’s hot wasn’t even on before the kraut had stunk up the entire house. It was so bad, MJ complained. I put some kraut on a sausage, ate it, dumped the rest of it into a garbage bag, and took it downstairs. I guess this is something that has to be done once every five years or so – see you in 2014 Herr Sauerkraut. Strangely enough, after a day full of nitrates, vinegar, and cabbage, I don’t feel so well. Maybe I can go lie down with the ducks on their island.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

I'm Frickin' Senile

Wallet, keys, iPod, iPod case, earphones, water, and membership card are the accoutrements I need to go to the gym on a basic weekday morning. That’s not counting the breakfast, coffee, more water, and nutritional supplements I have to take care of just to be prepared to walk out the door. I’m not a morning person at all, so this gets f-d up nine out of ten mornings unless I prepare the preceding night before I get too tired or LMJ goes to sleep. This morning wasn’t basic. We don’t have any water because there are plumbers who are treating our bathroom like it was 1973 and they're in Led Zeppelin, and we’ve moved all of our valuables into the sun room. It’s a miracle I didn’t die trying to get out of the house. I couldn’t find my iPod case, so I didn’t even bother looking for some earphones. I decided I would shower at the Y after my workout so I had to bring a change of clothes, some shower shoes, and some soap with me. I got all the way to the gym before I realized I had forgotten the shirt I was going to wear to work. So I got to drive all the way back home to get it. I also forgot to eat breakfast. I struggled through my workout, but I did remember my weight belt so there were no injuries. I showered, got dressed, and headed right back home because I forgot my computer. I hate being disorganized, but the alternative is spending my entire life planning for tomorrow. I hate that nothing ever goes smoothly. The plumbers were supposed to be done yesterday, but the weather made that impossible. It’s not their fault and I’m not blaming them. They can’t control the weather, but it threw my schedule off into something uncomfortable so now I’m struggling to catch up and the day is almost gone. I’m not physically able to be a workaholic. I don’t care enough to be anal retentive. Maybe this has just been a rough week, and I’ll stop wanting to smash my fist through walls because I can’t remember my clothes when the bathroom is done and things are back to normal.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Sorry About the Football Gossip Post.

As a 38 year old Black guy and Jacksonville Jaguar fan, my first reaction to hearing that Steve McNair was found shot to death in downtown Nashville was disbelief. He was a juggernaut – ask Kevin Hardy and Bryce Paup. This was immediately followed by anger. Why is it so difficult for Black NFL players to avoid gangstas doing gangsta (spit)? Yes, I jumped to that conclusion. Fool me once shame on you; fool me once a week for two decades shame on me. But as the smoke cleared, as the gun was found under the dead mistress and gun residue was found on her hands, as details of McNair buying stuff and putting her name on it came out, as I learned that she bought the gun a few days before, I was relieved. The mistress shot the lecherous former athlete because he was cheating on her with a second mistress. I wonder how many Cadillac Escalades in Nashville are registered to the late Steve McNair. This wasn’t The Wire, it was Desperate Housewives. I needed to take a shower. And that’s just awful. This is where I am with professional sports. I’m relieved that a 36 year old guy who died a violent death and who orphaned four boys wasn’t a tap dead center stereotypical statistic. I’m glad that Tom Brady and Matt Leinart most likely had “there but for the grace of God” moments. Remember Tom Terrific found out Bridget Moynihan was pregnant with his baby, and he went with the old “It’s not you, it’s me” routine. He’s lucky she’s at least a little more level headed than McNair’s little thing on the side (a). Chad Ochocinco – yes he changed his name to the numbers on his jersey in bad Spanish -- and Terrell Owens. frustrate me to no end, but I’ll take their antics over McNair’s, Sean Taylor’s, and Darrent Williams’s autopsies every day.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Gösta Holmér Would Be Proud

I was out the door even earlier than yesterday. I ran two miles to the gym, blasted my shoulders and triceps, and then I shuffled home. Running there was fun. Two miles is cake. I got my blood going. I was excited about lifting weights for the first time since I hurt my back. I think a two mile run qualifies as a sufficient warm up. The guy that checks ID’s asked how far I ran, and I told him, then he reminded me that I had to run back. I wasn’t thinking about that. I was thinking about lifting weights without serious injury, and I’d worry about the trip back when it was time. I finished with my weights, turned my watch back on, and got ready to run home. It wasn’t happening. I was barely a quarter mile into the trip back when I had to start walking. It wasn’t a total loss. I basically turned the session home into a modified fartlek. I’d run all out for a block and then walk a block. What was strange was that I was good for about thirty seconds of anything faster than a brisk walk. I could run at an 11 minute mile pace for thirty seconds or I could run at a 4 minute mile pace for thirty seconds, which is why I decided to “go for it”. I was haulin’ ass through Riverside. I don’t know if I looked like an idiot or not, but it wound up being fun, and at the end of my run I wound up averaging about a ten minute mile pace. It took me twenty minutes and ten seconds to get back. My heart rate topped out at 187, but since I couldn’t keep it down I figured I might as well get it up. It was interesting. Legs are tomorrow and I haven’t decided what I’m going to do. I may do more speed play with some interval training or I may lift weights and do the elliptical to give my feet and shins a break. We’ll see.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Dawn Patrol

I was able to get out the door at ten till six this morning. The early dawn light and smells reminded me of when MJ and I used to walk around the neighborhood every morning. Unfortunately, that was before the blog so I have no idea when it was. I think it was after I moved to Lincoln, which means it was after the spring of 2005. There was a rooster in a tree – if I’m lyin’ I’m dyin’ – that crowed as we passed every morning. It was the weirdest thing. Anyway, I did six and a half miles this morning, which was a mile and a half more than I planned on doing, but I felt good so I ran. The cooler temperature made running a little bit easier, but I swear it was more humid than it is in the middle of the day. I don’t even know how that’s possible. I was surprised by the lack of runners on the road. I thought pre-dawn is when the serious runners did their work. I saw a pack of old ladies power-walking, and I saw some people with their dogs, but I didn’t see anyone running faster than me, which was strange because I was taking it very easy. I’m proud of myself for getting up at 5am. I woke up at about 4:15 and seriously considered changing the alarm from 5 to 6, but I didn’t. I got up, ate some breakfast, checked on my Facebook stuff, and was out the door. I really enjoyed running along the river as the sun came up. It’s a breathtaking scene. I may take a camera along tomorrow. And although I’m a little bit tired right now, there’s a big satisfaction in knowing that I’m done for the day. I burned my 12 hundred calories and was on my way to work before 8:15. I’m going to try to make this a habit.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

No Hormones or Antibiotics in This Post

We didn’t plan anything today, so we sat around frustrated. It’s different when we plan nothing – then that’s the plan. When we don’t plan at all everything becomes, “So what do you want to do?” I hate days like this. For some reason we decided not to go to the beach. It may have been that we’re spending $50 a week on gas in the van alone, but I don’t think that was all of it. We were drunk on pasta last night, but that doesn’t leave a hangover. We just weren’t motivated. We didn’t have any get up and go. The highlight of the day was going to the church park down the street with LMJ, but it was 95 degrees and MJ got bitten by some kind of ninja ant. I thought about running this morning to burn off some of the 8,500 calories I consumed, but I didn’t because we were thinking about going to JSG’s and EJG’s for time in the pool and we hadn’t ruled out the beach yet. The next thing I knew it was noon and the day was shot. I couldn’t even get into the most exciting Wimbledon men’s final ever. I was so bored I cleaned the kitchen, set up the coffee for tomorrow, ironed a shirt for work, and all of this was done before 2pm. Fortunately, MJ saved the day by cooking a delicious chicken dinner with some kind of Uncle Ben’s rice concoction. Springer Mountain Farms chicken is worth the price. I don’t know what they do, but it’s the only chicken we’ve ever bought in the grocery store that tastes like the chicken you get in fine restaurants, plus they’re a family farm in northeast Georgia and it’s fun to say Springer Mountain Farms like we grew up there. The best part of the dinner was that the whole thing was a complete surprise. I was moping around wishing tomorrow would get here, completely ready to skip dinner, when MJ basically put a plate of food in front of me. I guess days like this are necessary every once in a while so we can appreciate the beach days.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

We Hold These Truths...Man I'm Wasted.

I needed to get the blood flowing this morning and MJ flushed all my cocaine down the toilet, so I went running instead. I got out early enough so I could run fast, but not early enough that it wouldn’t be painful. It wasn’t too bad. I hit my goal, but my legs are a little bit stiff. The reason I needed to get the blood flowing this morning is because I’m going to celebrate the Declaration of Independence with some friends by engaging in some good old fashioned American gluttony. Take that you limey bastards! I would feel bad about the planned overindulgence but I saw a show last night on the History Chanel called Secrets of the Founding Fathers. They interviewed some history professors and some conspiracy theorists who didn’t agree on much, but what they did agree on was that everyone involved with the decision to secede from England was definitely drunk, most likely high, and the only reason the meetings weren’t held at strip clubs is because clear heels hadn’t been invented yet. All these farmers from all thirteen colonies had three things in common: they all made their own booze, they all considered the commandment against adultery as more of a guideline than a hard and fast rule, and they all had large portions of their lands dedicated to the growing of hemp. Blah, blah, blah rope, blah, blah, blah, paper, these fools were high enough to play in the NBA. With the exception of making their own booze, all these guys lived the NBA lifestyle. If it was good enough to start a revolution, then it’s more than good enough to celebrate that revolution. I think drinks should be on the house. The second hour of the show was the conspiracy theorists ranting about how everything that has happened in this country since the Declaration of Independence has been a Masonic plot and the history professors rolling their eyes and clouding things up with logic and facts, and I got bored. Anyway, I plan on pursuing some happiness tonight with good friends and good food, and that’s about as American as I can get.

Friday, July 3, 2009

A Case for George and Ringo

I’m wondering how much mp3’s and iTunes have changed the music industry and the listening experience for teenagers. There’s no album experience anymore. I think it may be leading to more and more processed crap since, for all intents and purposes, everything that’s released is a single. I can’t think of a single album where I like every single song on it. Thriller is the greatest pop record ever, but looking at it now I would only buy five of the nine songs on it unless there were some serious extras or a massive discount for buying the whole thing. Imagine the Beatles trying to sell the White Album the way it was originally done. Their record company would start by scrolling down the writers’ credits and just deleting anything with Harrison or Starr next to it. Ctrl-F, Harrison or Starr, delete all. That would get it down to twenty-five songs. Then they would get rid of everything under 2 ½ minutes. There’s no room for artists being quirky. That would get rid of another eight songs, and so far the only hit that’s been eliminated is Blackbird. Revolution 9 would have to go for the same artists’ indulgence reason the super short songs had to go. So we’re left with twelve songs and all but one of the hits, but would it really be the masterpiece that the thirty song original was. I seriously doubt it. Actually, this started with CD’s making it easy to skip songs. Skipping songs on a tape was always more trouble than it was worth and skipping songs on a record was almost as bad, so you sat there and listened to “While My Guitar Gently Weeps” even though it wasn’t your favorite song, but after a while it grew on you because it was part of the album. There’s something to be said for listening to the flow of an album. It’s what makes it more than the sum of its parts, and I think iTunes is making it too easy to just get the parts.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

This Scratches the Surface

LMJ had her first music class today. She thought it sucked overall. She was tired from the beach, it moved way too slow for her, and there were too many points where she wasn’t getting to bang on or shake something. I thought it was fun and educational. Not just because of the music though. It was an anthropological expedition into deep deep WASP. The only other non-Anglo Saxons in the room besides LMJ and me were Kiki the granny from Greece, as in from Athens, who spoke no English and, Paola the Nanny in training via Mexico. I don’t know where she’s actually from but she came through Mexico to get here. After me the oldest male in the class was Samuel, who I think was 3 ½. We sat on the floor on little circular rugs in a room that was 80 degrees. I sat criss-cross-apple-sauce, which is the new politically correct version of Indian style. I’m not set up for that. I’m getting more flexible but my fat ass can’t handle long periods in that position. Nothing below my waist was getting new blood. My feet fell asleep after about five minutes, and when the numbness crept up past my knees after about fifteen minutes I started to panic about gangrene and straightened out my legs. This is about the same time that LMJ decided that the songs we were singing sucked, and that she would be much happier exploring the church. Her mom took her out of the room, and I was left as a basso black guy in a room of Ortega and Avondale soprano moms and a crazy music teacher singing some song about cats running or something. The lesson was about rhythm and meter, but I was “singing” – term used VERY loosely – in a key a piano player would only play with his left pinky because that’s all I’ve got while the desperate housewives and hot nanny, whose name I can’t remember, were all singing in a right side of the piano key. None of us would have been considered for Into the Woods, but we were all there for our kids. Only video could do this scene justice. I would have been embarrassed about LMJ's behavior, but the son of the Avondale mom sitting next to us decided that the egg shaped rattles the crazy teacher handed out would make perfect missiles. He got about six inches from his mom and threw one at her as hard as he could. LMJ has never done anything remotely like that, and I was happy that I had a daughter. Unfortunately, MJ and I took turns taking LMJ out of the class and bringing her back in. She just was not into it. I’ve left SO much out and I may have to come back to it later but I don’t want to write a nine thousand word post.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Hip Pop, Stink, The 4th, and We're You're Back Yard Friends

I guess I’m in a random thought mood this week. I just have blurbs tonight. We just got back from Publix and we heard the Black Eyed Peas song Boom Boom Pow. There’s a part in the song where the token white chick with the hot body who’s only there to help sell records and really adds nothing artistically Fergie shrieks sings the line “Will I Am drop the beat now!” I changed it to “William Wallace drop the beat now!” and sing it in a Scottish brogue. It works because she stretches “Am” into two syllables like Ayyum. Or is that a diphthong?

I spent most of the afternoon trying to figure out if my washing machine had stopped working or if I had some kind of disease because I stink. It’s not either of those things. It’s the old fashioned, European, “I didn’t bathe today” that’s causing the putridity. I was in a hurry this morning, and I planned on coming home early and going running. Unfortunately, none of that happened. It’s actually a relief. I’m not out a thousand dollars – or whatever washer dryer combos cost – and I’m not dying of some tropical flesh eating disease. I just need to hop in the shower. Yay me!

The bad economy is hitting everyone in new and exciting ways. In commemoration of the founding fathers’ version of Austin 3:16, aka Independence Long Weekend, the Modis building is cutting of the air conditioning at 2:30 tomorrow – Thursday. It will not be on Friday at all. In other words, don’t come in to work. It’s Independence Long Weekend and we live in Florida. Go blow something up. I’m the most casual worker I know, you know not a workaholic, but shutting down on Thursday afternoon for a holiday that’s two days later is a bit much.

I looooovvvve the Backyardigans. It’s the most fun on television since the Sid and Marty Krofft stuff. It makes me want to go play in the backyard. I let LMJ watch too much of it this evening, but I really don’t care.