January 31, 2007

Driving Mr. Daisy

I dislike driving vehicles. For no other reason then I hate sitting there paying attention and going someplace that more times then not I did not want to go to in the first place.

I drive well and have always aced any driving tests etc. However, its just not something I opt to do. Being able to walk to work is great and having a wife that enjoys driving means I can read or listen to music or sleep on longer trips. Ah, heaven...

Anyways, at one point I landed a job with Bank of America, transporting proof of deposit materials from banks to proofing centers. This consisted of a four or five hour jaunt of driving all over Southern california. Eventually, I got a route change and started travelling into 1000 west temple which is pretty much smack dab in the middle of Los Angeles. This was three times a day two of which was rush hour. Yes, this was pre-internet when Fax was the king of transmitted data.

As time progressed I started to learn the personality of the freeways. The 91 is a hick, the 5 was uptight and easily annoyed. The 405 was more layed back, etc.

My route was pretty much the same. 405 to the 605 to the 5 to west temple and then head back. The thing about LA is there are many many ways of getting from point A to point B. So I developed alot of alternate routes. When the 105 opened that was a sweet ride and shaved quite a bit of time off the route. My knowledge of tunes went up as did my cool headedness. Being hourly and with traffic knowledge being a flip of the dial away, it was easy to kick back and let the snarl begin. I new surface routes and back alley cuts and could easily make it there and back again when the other slobs would barely make it a few miles.

January 29, 2007


I took Connor to the Roller rink Saturday. He is much better on skates at that age then I ever was, physically he is remarkable, great balance and sense of self. Clumsy is not Connor.

They played a couple of songs he likes, so we had to sing along. Barbie Girl being a biggie. He wanted to be out on the floor the whole time. This was not fun for my lower back but I survived with only a couple of advil, heating pad and a nice wifey massage.

I forgot to trim my toenails, which caused the msot discomfort. I have some hockey skates which are light, very stiff and a very snug fit. So for about two hours I was shoving the nail back into my toe and I didnt bring my nylon socks opting for the cotton ones that are two thick.

I do need to get some new laces as the three year hiatus has caused the old ones to not be the bestest. The wheels, while not the best, are still going strong and overall it was very nice and familier having them on my feet again. The way I skate they are really a natural extension for me now.

I watched Connor carefully and with out too much more time on the floor He would be solo, I'm sure of it.

January 26, 2007

Somthing really bad, usually has to happen.

The last two elections someone on CNN decided to start referring to the electorial collage vote, color states as the Red States and Blue States. I hear a lot of nay saying without any alternatives.

Our elected leaders are not leading they are reacting. Compromise or 'working together' is translated as 'You do what we want'. They keep harping on the Division of the country and how its worse now then ever...

Whenever two people get really pissed off at each other, sometimes the only way to get them united is for something outside of them occurs bringing them together. A disaster or a common foe etc.

The USA has always been a country of many different idea's and divisions. Some good some bad some open for debate. The USA has always been a country of people who cometogether for the common good, when the need arises. We the people will always extend a hand out to those in need and usually get pretty pissed off if taken advantage of (eventually).

Wouldnt it be great if the government all got together in the face of a common enemy? Like the Media....?

January 24, 2007


Personally, I would never give an 'okay' for someone to film a rape sceen with any underage performer, even the suggestion involving my own kids would envoke a near violent response.

I have seen plenty of movies where the act is depicted off camera or admitted to in some setting and as I recall those were very powerful dramatic moment's.

Filming the act no matter how 'tastefully done' makes me wonder what the hell the entertainment industry is thinking. I'm sure contraversy sells. And the DA of North Carolina (where, I understand, filming a simulated rape of a child is illegal) signed off on it as well. I really hope people respond by not seeing or purchasing the film.

I would personally like to see this Sundance film go the way of ZYZZYX ROAD

January 22, 2007


In my past I have hosted and ran various dice and paper games, primarily AD&D (Advanced Dungeons and Dragons). It was a great reason to get together socially with my friends and provided many hours of entertainment.

I am lead to believe that I was pretty damn good at running the games, or being the Game Master to use the term. I would design and run the various storylines and sceanario's. It all started back at the local collages gaming club. I would go there to play and no one was running a game. I ended up running those games and eventually even ran games at convention tournaments.

I went from just running random games to making an ongoing event with static characters, finally started from scratch with brand new um... saner.. characters.

This went over a long period of time several years with many faces that came and went. Finally culminating in my retirment when I moved up to Oregon.

Now my riddled brain doesnt recall nearly as to what all happened over this period of time and frequently either my wife or one of my friends will recall an incident that strikes a cord but I have little to no recollection about.

WoW video (Weird Al Song)

This vid really captures quite a bit about WoW's kookier side. Note the reference to Chuck Norris and the impressive chat window dialog.

January 19, 2007


The Film industry put out that Night at the Museum has grossed $192,094,485. Hollywood has a higher earnings then quite a few countries out there.

January 17, 2007

The state of entertainment

I cannot think of a new TV show that has caught my attention in about three years. Of all the movies comming out only a handful even looks interesting to me. The radio plays music that is so fragmented for the first time I cannot think of artists representing the sound of this current decade. There has not been a musical video in forever.

So what is up with the state of entertainment?

I'm thinking some kind of saturation point has been reached. In typical supply and demand economics we have an abundance of Entertainment and so Demand is going way way down.

It is going to get worse before it gets better. I keep thinking of the NHL as way of an analogy.

It used to be there was only six teams:
Montreal Canadians, Toronto Maple Leafes, Boston Bruins, Detroit Red Wings, Chicago Blackhawks, and the New York Rangers.

The talent on these teams was first rate. So few slots and so many players made every team a team of all stars. The NHL finally expanded to stop upstart leagues from filling the Void. More teams the talent level dropped.

January 16, 2007

I blame Global Warming.

the Interstate is closed and snow is comming down in droves. The last time we had any real issues was in 1990 or so. Since that year we have had brief dusting of snow and it goes away within the next 48hours max.

Now this year is the first time since we have been up here that it snowed and it stuck around for a week. Now its snowing again...

To pull a page from Tim's playbook. It has to be Bush and global warming...

Trapped in Eugene

Connor has specific things he likes and wants. You have to be very clear, consise and consistant when it comes to him. Thanks to cartoon network (of all things), it is much easier to put things in cronological order and have him understand. "First is tickets, then is Froggy, later is the movie" allows him to get what whats going on. But, I am getting ahead of myself.

Due to a conflict in schedules Tina and Diana had an appointment at the dentist the same time as Trevor. His being quite a drive away in the 'Big City'. So I took a vacation day and the plan was to make a day of it and hit the cheapie theater for a flick (flushed away, a movie Connor has been particularly interested in seeing) prior to the given appointment.

Best laid plans eh? We made it to the shopping mall but went to the wrong theater (two theaters in one shopping mall? whouda thunk it!!??). We head to the second one and there is a freeking line across the food court. I parked Trevor in the line and took Connor up to the front to see what was going on, Connor heared and read that Flushed away was playing so he started gettting very excited that he was going to be seeing the film! It turns out it was 50cent day. And a school Holiday. And the 2:00 and 3:00 show was sold out.

At this point Connor was fully expecting to see Flushed away and this would be our last chance to see it in a theater. So with heavy sigh I resigned myself to the 6:50pm show and we stood in the line for a good 30min. I explained to Connor the series of events for that day and he was perfectly fine.

Next we wandered the mall. I had forgotten my watch and so I hit Kohls and bought Trevor a timex ($10.00!). and we hung out till 3:30ish and hit Red Robin for lunch. I like this resturant as it has veggie burgers and plenty of French Fries for Connor. In an interesting change Connor wanted spagetti and french fries. Sure enough when the food came he ate it all. Usually at a resturant we will either try something and he usually doesnt eat or we get him french fries. Seeing as how going out is a minimal thing its not a biggie on the crap food input for any of the kids.

So food devoured we headed across town to Froggy's parking was a bear in the city and afterwards taking surface streets back to the mall was a pain. The streets are very non-intuative and tend to swing from North South to east west. Signs for Freeway offramps are vague and do not always point you correctly. Luckily Rivers and Freeways are pretty specific points in the landscape and I was able to navigate obliquely to the Mall in time for the movie.

Ardman Entertainment is Nick Parks company that produced the Wallace and Grommit shorts and movie. Flushed away is a computer animated version of Mr. Parks Unique style. It is well done and has a good portion of comedy and some pretty creative use of recognized items being used as boats, houses shops etc.

In an odd twist a Mime was pretty entertaining in this film.

So we got back in late Monday night. Connor was happy, Trevor commented that he liked the Clay stop motion as it had a more organic feel to it, as in being more 'real' and a part of the wonder of Nick Park.

I was just glad to be home and out of that freeking ass big confusing, overcrowded, traffic laden, no parking City. Gimmie small towns anyday!

January 12, 2007

Ice driving

Water in its solid form is amazingly dangerous. With my new vehicle I can traverse most ice in town easily enough. The danger comes from others who either cannot or do not take the conditions into account. Having a set of snow tires does not mean you understand the physical dynamics of driving on the stuff.

As such this AM I set out to head to work down our hill. I walked out and tested my shoes traction on the blacktop and was satisfied it was less then an icerink. I proceeded with caution, and used the brakes early.

I only had a couple of tire spins. I was more concerned with staying away from the other cars so as not to risk those drivers not using the same caution.

January 10, 2007

the 'N'-word

Recently there has been quite a furor over the 'N'-word. Some people calling for the banning of the word itself and even legal action for its uttering. When I was a child I recall my mother actually saying "Sticks and stones may break my bones, but names can never harm me".

If I understand correctly I can take a voice recorder and have a mix of ethnical backgrounded people say the 'N'-word into the machine. Then if I play it to someone the criteria for it being offensive is which ethnic background uttered the word.

Isnt it a choice to allow something like a word have power over us?

January 09, 2007

Work Life Balance

One of the buzz words around here is Life\Work balance. Shouldnt we have more leisure time? Wasnt there some theories back in the 60's that our free time would increase with automation?

What kind of crock was that? 30 hour work week! thats the ticket!! Five weeks vacation a year to start! Bring back the Blue Laws! Day of rest! Sabbath time!

I got the option to go to four 10 hour days. Sounds sweeet? Three days off a week? What a deal! In practicality it doesnt work out that great for a dad.

I get to work by 7:30am. I get to see the kids briefly in the morning as we are all scrambling around. I get home after 7:00pm. Everyone is already engaged in the after dinner activities or have already left to do whatver it is they do.

Sit down dinners are out of the question. So I throw together what I can and eat alone or at the computer checking on the events of the day. Then its either chase everyone down. pick everyone up or just watch the tube or play wow. Get Connor to bed. Remind the teens is a school nite and then hit the sack myself for hopefully 8 hours before going again.

My copious day off is Thursday. Which I either have a project or its raining. I do some busy work, balance the books. Run some errands and wait for the kids to arrive.

So after a couple of weeks I am thinking five 8's are more suited to my work\life balance. Just have to convince my manager.

January 08, 2007

Meetings (a series)

Tina, my wifey. soul mate (thats the plan anyways). etc.

Met her at a church dance that she musta been really bored to even been too. Ah, Kismit. So its a church dance a friend of mine is running for her youth group. One of the members of her youth group is named Rick who is a good friend (lived up the street) from Tina's family.

I used to DJ dances with my friend Byron. We would get paid based on whatever they could afford and Byron had a set of lights and we combined our stereo's to get the sound. Poor Byron couldnt put a playlist together to save his soul so I would be in charge of what goes next.

My music collection while exoteric did not lend itself to your usual dancing mob so we advertised for peeps to bring thier music so we would be sure to play what they like! My actual first meeting with Tina was over her records as I thumbed through and commented how nice the various selections where. This won a few points I found out later.

Being a red head I had my work cut out for me. Unbenownst to me Tina had this biggotted predjudice against any and all red heads. She only watched the Lucy Show cuz it was B&W. Luckily my charm and incredible dance moves overshadowed my coif.

Actually, this crowd was a bit youngish for me and Byron was dance challanged other then a Heavy Metal Head bob. So with him set with his play list. I was gofer and went out dancing. With Tina. Occasionally I would go back and set the play list.

All in all it was a decent dance and Hey! we got paid! I enjoyed chatting with Tina and was more then a little dissapointed when she vanished. Although, she did come back later with 'decent' soda drinks.

I invited her to go roller skating that Sunday night. She had functional skates and had some skills. I ended up skating and talking most of the night with her. I even ended up throwing caution to the wind (my recently cut loose ex GF was at the rink.) and skated couples skate with her. Damn she must have been intersting that night. As she continues to be. Now we are 25 years later Married 19 of those in August.

And I cannot figure out how I ever made it through life without her.

January 04, 2007

Moving big rocks

Joe posted about Tim's passion for moving big rocks.
(see link to the right Joe Delta)
Thought I would post this for inspiration.

Rob tale of political battles

I posted the Shoo incident. I then thought about the Rob of the California Georges fisticuffs. Actually I dont really recall any other then one incident during elementary school leadership.

If I recall accuratly. Rob was running for class president or something against Roger. At one point this became a 'brawl' out on the playground with various supporters. (note: Even using the term brawl is overly dramatic. It was kids on a playground roughousing and using the election as an excuse).

At one point Rob and Roger found themselves facing off with each other. Neither wanting to 'start' the fight by throwing the first blow. Either they called it a draw or the bell rang.

No broken hands or anything but in retrospect, shows quite a bit of common sense for 3rd or 4th graders.

January 01, 2007

Shoo tale

My sieve like mind cannot retrieve the name of the guy, well he would be a kid then...

I'm back in junior high school. Which is a blending of 6th, 7th and 8th grade when there isnt enough room at the elementary school. Its a pre-high school high school social experiment that really gets the drama started.

I recall overhearing the above mentioned pre-pubecent talking about a recent scrap where he 'kicked someones butt' that somone being Shoo {see link to the right}. Now this kid was pretty messed up swollen face, with lacerations and contusions, claming victory.

If he won the fight and looked that beat-up I figured Shoo was worse. Out of concern I kept look out, finally spotting him a class or two later. He looked perfectly fine, uninjured. I conjectured the scabby kid had the wrong person named.

It wasnt until PE that I was able to corner Shoo and find out if he was in an altercation or not.

The first thing out of his mouth was. "Oh yeah, that.." which of course means he had pretty much dismissed the incident already.

"We fought at the park, I hurt my hand, told him he won and went home"

Sure enough, his hand was swollen and later dicovered he had broken it with other guys face.

Victories are not always pretty, or even victories for that matter...

Banned Words

During this new year please refrain from using the following words\phrases under the authority of Lake Superior State University. As the culture police of our society the LSSU is only looking out for the good of humanity by proffering this list. So utilize it under penalty of mucus or something..

  • Gitmo
  • Combined celebrity names
  • Awesome
  • Gone or went missing
  • Pwn or pwned, a misspelling of “own” used by online video gamers
  • Now playing in theaters
  • We’re pregnant
  • Undocumented alien
  • Armed robbery gone bad or drug deal gone bad
  • Truthiness
  • Ask your doctor
  • Chipotle
  • i-anything
  • Search
  • Healthy food
  • Boasts