Friday, August 31, 2007

When the Cat is Away ...

The mice (or mouse ... thats me) stays up way too late and drinks a beer or two too many. Not last night, but the night before. Oy, was I tired at work yesterday. But I got sent home from the theater after an hour and a half, so that was all good.

I'm off to Ft Stevens to fight the Civil War for the weekend.


Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Day 1: She's Gone

This is the first full day that Emily has been gone.

She left yesterday, but I saw her for all of about 35 minutes before she left the house at 5 am. But yesterday doesn't count as a full day, ergo, the ".5" demarcation.

Today, the first full day, was about how I expect the vast majority of the next 40 Emily-less days to be. I went to work, I did the stuff I do there, I came home, I did some things, and now I'm blogging just before bed. But here's a more specific run-down of the day:

1) This Can't Be Enitrely Healthy - I got home from work and decided that I wanted to play some video games. My system of choice (until I find or re-purchase my copy of Super Mario Allstars for the SNES) is my GameCube. Mario Kart was in the console already, and thought, 'thats alright, but let's see what else I've got'. I looked through the games, all several of them that I have, and found The Sims. WHOO!! I loved this game back in the day. And I've got some houses already going in this game, but wouldn't it be fun to design a house based on my current house.? Of couse. I start building, but quickly realize the system is not tallying the cost of things as I build and furnish the recreation of my home. I think that I've found a glitch in the game that allows me to build the house I truly desire and move my new people into it. I pimp the shit out of this house. It's got a pool and a hot tub. It's got the best bed, couch, fridge, terlet and carpet. I go all out for my computer self. The house is tiny, but chock full of expensive shit.

Then, when I'm done building, and I have gone all out, I go to move my people in, and realize the house is worth $84,000+. Doesn't sound like much, but the starter home on The Sims is $20,000, and thats before you buy anything worth while. I quickly scrap the characters I've created, though they may have been the best I ever have (my character was wearing a thong and glasses and thats it).

I play the game using some of my previously created characters in one of my previously shit-houses (again, one character represents me, and another represents Emily). And I quickly find myself making the characters ignore all their other needs (food, hygiene, their bowels, and sleep) in order to hang out with each other. I can see this quickly descending into a scenario where ther characters both quit their jobs, ignore their friends, and spend all their time indoors just to be with each other.

I realize that this could prove to be an unhealthy game to play very soon and I shut it off. Mario Kart has no long term effects on my soul, other than my hatred of Donkey and Diddy Kong. What fuckers? Why should they arbitrarily drive so fast and Princess Peach and whatever other bitch she drives with drive so slow? It makes no sense. The Kongs are inhuman. They're monkeys. Computer assisted monkeys.

2) - Jeremy Foxx contacted me over a year ago to try and pull the old files off of Emily's computer and send them to him so he could repost them on the new He brought it up again recently with the thought of obtaining Emily's old, dysfunctional laptop in order to take it home with him and retrieve the files. I decided to fire up the machine, see what I could see, and try to give him an advance diagnosis of the problems the computer was having. Lo' and behold the son of a bitch was working. Just long enough. I copied the appropriate folders into a burn folder, inserted a disc, and furiously burned the files to a CD. It wasn't more than 30 seconds after the burn was completed before the computer crashed. I couldn't give a shit what it does from here on out, I got what I needed. So check out shortly to regale youself with the old stories and photos from that wonder of a house. I had a great time in the last hour or so reading up on the old site. Good times ... nay, great times.

3) That fucking electrician ... This tool has been working on the house for the last month or more. I seem to recall that he was in the home some time very shortly after we got back from Hawaii, so we're talking mid to late July. Homeboy was converting all the plugs to grounded outlets (they'd previously been just 2-prong deals). He converted most, but not all of the plugs in short order, but suddenly quit the job, leaving one plug entirely unconverted, and about half of the others converted, but minus the outlet cover. It didn't affect their operability, but the loser just quit mid-job. I emailed my landlord, who is about as desirable a landlord as you could ... desire ... and let him know that the electrician he'd chosen was a bum.

It wasn't that huge a deal, I was fully willing to buy and install the outlet covers myself, providing the landlord reimburse me for the expense. Then, all of a sudden, today I came home from work to discover that the electrician had been back. Homey must have a key to the place, since I surely wasn't home to let him in, and I don't believe the landlord has really been out here everytime to let the guy in. I pull in to the driveway to discover a handful of potentially-tire-puncturing wood screws in the driveway. I go up to the door, and use the key to 'unlock' the deadbolt and lock, however, neither proves to be locked. I am certain I locked them before going to work this morning, meaning this douchebag left my house unlocked for who knows how many hours. FUCK!! I yelled as I walked in. On the kitchen counter I find a three-switch outlet cover, something that is un-needed in this house, broken ... a corner was broken off, the bag and screws were strewn about the counter-top, and my dishes drying rack, was carelessy tossed in the sink. Supposedly this was to allow access to the outlet near the fridge, though memory serves that this outlet was completed previously.

And he left the light the serves the stairwell on. This is a normally dark area of the home, true, but between 8am and 4pm, there is no reason the light need be turned on. This fuck left my light on for no reason costing me money on my SUB bill. ARGH!!!

I have nothing more to say about this. I hate this electrician, and due to his apparent douchie-ness, I want to change the locks. No need to leave a home in Springfield, the blue-collar (read: shit of a town) that this is, unprotected so that some ass-wipe of an electrician can come and go as he pleases. Perhaps he'll sell the key to some lowlife drug dealer he knows so that he can make some quick cash, and the dealer can steal my shit. I can't wait to get out of this paranoia-inducing town. Even downtown Portland with it's bums-in-doorways population was more secure than this nonsense.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Day .5 - Emily Leaves Me

It's not a catastrophic, or unplanned thing. Emily is traveling with her mother to Spain for the next six weeks walking the El Camino de Santiago. And today she left. Should I record a journal of her time away, I asked myself. At first I thought I'd best record all the things I did around the house so that I could point them out to Emily upon her return. However this felt, not like gloating, but like some other verb I can't think of, where I seek her praise for doing mundane, but helpful things around the house. We've been here for almost 2 months, and we're mostly moved in, but its the little things that make this place unfinished just yet. And when I hang that poster, or finish all the laundry (those wedding-present towels that have gone unwashed for weeks, cluttering our laundry room) or reorganize our living room, I don't need to beg for the praise that I would normally get on an average day for accomplishing these minor chores.

Then I realized that I have a blog. A "web-log", if you will, where I can record my inner-most thoughts and feelings, and perhaps record the mundane mundanicities (trademark), that comprise daily life. And what daily life isn't more interesting than mine? Especially now, being a rediscovered bachelor in the greatest of suburbs of Oregon's greatest 3rd largest city.

Today, is just another one of the greatest days that this temporary bachelor could ever experience: Enjoy:

1) I worked at the credit union. Whoo! What more can be said? Get this, today I recommended reformating one of the forms that we find ourselves using on a weekly basis (thats not that often for us). The form we use now, is a scanned-in facsimile of an original that was copied some time in the mid-90's. And those bastards scanned it in crooked. This is a form freely available on our website, that we ask our member's to use. WTF?! We can't do better than this, I asked? So my "boss" (he heads my department, but he don't own me!), and I start a race to see who can remake this form (he in Microsoft Word, me in Excel) the fastest and the best. Mine was better if I may say, but he was faster, and it was damn close. We completed the form, and though we can't remove the link from our official website, this is the good one we'll send out in the future. What an exciting day?

2) Angels vs Mariners. The game (the 2nd of 3) didn't end up the way it should have considering the Mariners scored 5 in the first but couldn't hold the lead. However, the point I wanted to make, is that as a baseball fan who will never sit in the first couple of rows, I love it when a player fouls a ball straight back at the stands. The ball is inexorably deflected by the backstop, saving the fans who are sitting in that section. However these fans flinch as though they must protect themselves from a certain death. I probably would react the same, but since I'll never have the good fortunre to sit in such good seats, I can laugh at these over-reacting fools all I want.

3) Fresh Prince. Nick at Night has had the Fresh Prince on for some time now. It takes me back to my childhood. This is a good thing. Similarly, all the episodes they play are all the classics. The one where Will and that girl get trapped in the basement after the earthquake, or where Will has to take some children music ourse to graduate from highschool and he's dressed up in a flower outfit at the end, or the one where Will and Carlton get in a car accident and fall down a frozen embankment anhe yells (a la Cab Calloway 'Heide-Heide-Heide Fleiss!') I think to myself that they are only playing the great episodes, but then I realize that a lot of the episodes are great. Let us all give thanks to Quincy for finding Will Smith and making what was truly a great show with one of the top five theme songs of all time.

That is about all I have that is worthy of noting today. I'lll try to be better about posting. Now that Emily is not here, I won't have much else to do. Yay?

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Pert Plus: Fresh ... Freshens My Ass

I don't think that sentence was constructed as carefully as it could have been.

I bought myself a smaller bottle of shampoo that accompanied me on the honeymoon in Hawaii since I didn't want to bring the larger bottle I had, as it would have taken up too much space, and frankly, was almost empty anyway. Unfortunately, the bottle I bought was not the regular Pert Plus that I'm accustomed to. It was a botltle of "Pert Plus: Fresh". And a greater sham of marketing has never been perpetrated in the hair care market.

As near as I can tell, the only difference between the original formula, my bread and butter shampoo, and the "Fresh" version, is that "Fresh" includes a chemical that causes a little tingle. This is hardly akin to "freshness". Maybe ability to clean hair is more important to "freshness", but what do I know? However I feel this tingle only on my forehead. And this is of some concern to me. Why only on my forehead? The shampoo, in the normal course of its work, finds it's way onto the back of my neck, and the tips of my ears, and so forth. I should be feeling this there too. What magic chemical have they produced that targets, and tingles a 2" by 5" section of skin on one part of the body while causing zero effect on the rest?

I won't go much further. In fact in the future, I'll stay away from posts that feature me in the shower. But this just doesn't seem right. It doesn't freshen anything, it just makes my forehead tingle. I can't wait until that bottle is gone.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Cheaper Buy the Bourbon, or: More Booze for the Buck

So, I came to a realization the other day. Long ago, I made a dare, a bet, a challenge, a what-have-you with Michelle Nerdella (not her real name), a co-worker at the movie theater. It was in the interest of health, to see who could not drink any soda the longest. I lost. Quickly. It wasn't even a week. It's hard to make such a bet when one of the (few) perks of the job is free soda. Oh, but you have to bring your own cup. Like I can remember to do that. I just used our courtesy cups.

Long story short, Michelle won the bet having lasted months longer than I. Even in defeat, I realized the health benefits to a soda-free life and tried to resume such a diet, though I soon added the caveat that were I to ingest this soda as a part of an alcoholic beverage, a mixer, the drink wouldn't count. Beyond that minor transgression, I was no longer a soda drinker.

This is a truth that I have falsely gone along with for some time now. Not only have I often had soda, I have often had soda. And not with the requisite booze. And while I felt bad about those moments of weakness, I told myself that with booze it was okay.

What did this really mean? Every now and then, I would have a small cup of soda at work, a drink with dinner when we went out, or a glass or two at home if I was feeling really weak. But in truth (and this is that realization I was talking about), this meant that instead of curbing my soda intake, I stepped up my booze intake such that I was drinking just as much soda as before, but now with substantially larger quantities of liquor along with it. This was that caveat I allowed myself, and I was abusing it.

The best remedy to this situation? Let's dicsuss:

1) Beer!. It's tasty and its carbonated. Much like soda. But those calories will go straight to my long-established beer belly. We're trying to reduce that.

2) Cheaper bourbon: Yes, I want to lower my expenses in addition to drinking less booze, and this solution tackles the first point, while leaving the second point up to my own personal will. If I go bottom-shelf bourbon, not only will the booze and the Safeway Select that I promise I'll drink it with impact the wallet less, perhaps the awful taste will decrease my desire for the sweet, sweet fire water.

3) Everclear: An option similar to point #2. With it's higher alcohol content (considerably so), I have to drink less of it to get to a happy level of intoxication. This means less soda intake. But I don't know if I can handle the stuff the way I used to. Lawnmowers and their "bloody" off-shoot are a reminder of the Busta Kappa days, and I don't know if thats a good thing.

4) Stop drinking altogether: This option isn't really on the table, but should be included to take in all points of view. But only wussies would endorse this option.

So what does my future hold? I think I'll go with option #2 for the time being. Old Crow might be just as good as Wild Turkey (doubtful) , but alcohol is alcohol. And Safeway Select is just as good as Pepsi (doubtful as well). Unfortunately, the "cheaper" aspect of this solution may make the purchase of booze and soda less of a concern for me, and my speedy consumption thereof less worrisome. This means I may end up drinking more than I currently do. A liquid amount that will surpass my current intake, but a dollar amount that will be largely similar. Am I really coming out any better on this? Time will tell.

I think I have a problem.

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Yes, Actually ...

I do belive I'm important and witty enough to have text messaged all of you with the link to the blog. But if you actually read this thing ... thats up to you. Or is it up to me? Is it in my hands? If I actually do have something to say will I keep my readers? Grow my readership even? Or will I get bored of this in a month and just sit around watching tv instead of writing? I think I know which one is most likely. Do you?

Hello Friends

Well, I'm living in Springfield, Oregon now. And as much as I might like to regret this decision, the house we're in is actually pretty nice. It turns out that the only problem is that the house is in a terrifying neighborhood. Our street is okay, but we're on the same block as Club 1444 ("fourteen-forty-four" to the locals). A strip club that makes one think of the Boom-Boom Room on Barbur BLVD in Portland. Only worse. Those who've actually been in to the Boom-Boom Room, and not just shuddered as they've drivien past, might have a clue as to what this means. No, I haven't yet been into Club 1444, and I hope never to, but should I feel the need, I just hop over a fence and walk about 50 yards west. Blech.

I'll try to post here as often as I've not posted to the clearly defunct Portland-Not-Quite-Daily ( I think married life, as well as Springfield life, and post-graduate-underacheiver life has a great deal of potential for blog postings. Oh, and employed-at-a-credit-union-in-a-position-that-doesn't-need-to-exist life provides me ample time to muse on the ridiculousies of all my lives.

Stay tuned, friends.