Tuesday, May 31, 2005

The stain! The stain!

Today was "POWER WASH THE DRIVEWAY" Day in anticipation of the Acid Stain the Driveway Day, tomorrow, if it doesn't rain. Tomorrow is also Go to the Dentist Day. Boy, the fun is lining up, ready to land, isn't it?

We broke down (broke could be a key word) and hired a guy who says He's A Professional. That's for the driveway. The dentist has an office and all, and I assume he's licensed. His last name is Butcher. WHAT WAS I THINKING?

Well, with sufficient Nitrous Oxide, the dental visit will be painless, or I won't care if it is. I just wish I could get a tank home here for when the stain starts to run. If you scroll back deep enough in the archive, you can see MY initial attempts at staining concrete. (Back when you could send pictures to the blog - that feature is very broken lately.)

350 driveway-feet of that orange color would qualify for an open pharmacy of pain killer, wouldn't it?

Monday, May 30, 2005

Careers in Life Insurance

You could worry yourself to death.

Today we drove (car wreck) to the hotel (terrorism) restaurant we like for breakfast, but the street was closed (something falls from a high apartment and crushes us) for a bike race. Biking is big here. Instead, we returned the carpets we had out on loan (car wreck/bridge collapse/drowning) but the store wasn't opened yet, so we had breakfast next door (botulism/miscellaneous contagions/slime in the ice machine/dirty hands/sneeze into food/bacteria on tray/minimum wage washer spits into wash water/choking/sliping on grape thrown by child, hitting head). Then we went to the rug store to return the rugs (heart attack lifting/fibre inhalantion.) And drove home (wreck). I saw a spider on the deck (scared to death), a tarantula (spider bite death). Then tested the swimming pool water (drowning/electrocution/chemical poisoning) and had to add acid (horrible disigurement leads to depression and suicide/acid starts fire in garage.) We then walked the dog and saw some strays (rabid dog bite) and heard a strange buzzing (killer bees) just over the hill (heat exhaustion).

Saturday, May 28, 2005

What I learned from carpet shopping!

--- The guys who pile and unpile the rugs all day win all bar fights. That's heavy lifting. That's a thankless job. You don't want to mess with them. "Hey, Shag Boy" can get you into trouble.

--- Looking at rugs as they are displayed will take you back to your grandparents' homes. You will hunger for freshly baked anything with ice cream. Something will be wrong, though, and you'll find the old person smell disturbingly missing. Your brain will know.

--- FINDING the perfect rug is impossible. That's because most rugs have pile which is directional and changes looks from different angles as it catches the light on the shiny side. It's not unlike the "bar closing time effect" on singles, when things look differently. When you think you have the perfect rug, look from the other side. You will realize you don't. The dark side is real.

--- You will never have the right lighting conditions in your house or trailer.

--- All spills will take place on the bright side.

--- The term "vegetable dye" is used knowingly by rug sellers. Nobody knows what it means.

--- Shag, a.k.a., "the roach farm," was a good era we all miss, but can't bring back. If you ever scraped the rug and smoked what you got, you were part of the 70s.

--- rug prices are beyond comprehension and contain only a single distilled drop of reality. We saw an antique rug for $75,000. I wanted something freshly baked with ice cream. It was beautiful. Didn't smell right, though.

--- if you find used rugs on line, before purchase, be sure to look for blood stains with the CSI flashlight and filter kit.

--- Persian rugs aren't made in Persia. Purses are. And cats.

Friday, May 27, 2005

Snakes and ladders REVISED

At almost the end of May, the Texas Hill Country New Home/ Development scorecard is:

Scorpions: 6 (Terri got one with a shoe last night. This might call for a new pair. Right.)

Geckos: 4 (one really BIG one which was probably preggers with many babies!)

Mice: 8 or 9 - the count is climbing

Snakes: 5 1/2

Squashed frogs: 3

Spiders: many many: little fast ones; long legged superspiders; multi colored spiders; jumpers

TARANTULAS: 1 - and it was fast! Push it away with a broom and it charges AT the broom! And it's fast. About the size of a mouse. Spiders don't generally scare me, but this one did.

Rabbits the size of greyhounds: a) 12 or b) 2, repositioned

These numbers change like the tote board on the Jerry Lewis Telethon. Smaller numbers, but there you go.

Scorpions and Mice were on our property when they expired. One mouse was scraped off a sticky trap and limped away. I think he made it, but added one for him just in case. The others were sighted on dog walks.

Maybe construction is bringing out the vermin and scaly things - houses are going up faster than the male 'membership' at a high heel and lingerie convention.

The half snake was just that. All tail, no brain. Some men dream of this, but in another sense altogether.

I hate snakes. No good reason that I can tell. They totally freak me out.

I've come to view scorpions as earthbound wasps. This is because I haven't been stung.

BUUUUT, being a good husband, I will clean out the garage this weekend while my wife administers tranquilizing pharmaceuticals to me. There are MANY places where snakes can hold conventions under things. If I have a heart attack, you, as my designee, should start an investigation. If it's a rubber snake, Terri is after the life insurance money.

Something smells bad!

Infinity (broadcasting company), as you would expect, plans to appeal a jury's decision which awarded $10.6 million to a former employee, who claims she was fired from a Detroit radio station because she complained about being exposed to another employee's perfume, which sickened her and caused her to miss work. Infinity had required the other DJ to stop wearing the perfume to work, but the employee said the other woman intentionally exposed her to it at a country music festival. She then complained that the company was not protecting her from attacks by the other DJ.

I believe I can now sue the fat lady who sat in front or beside me in church when I was a child. This malicious woman in the florals and large hat, emitted noxious perfumes in those peak hot summer months, causing me emotional and spiritual distress from which I obviously have never recovered. I do not go to church today. My faith lost, I wander the earth, a lost soul. How much is THAT worth? I understand the devil will pay for that soul, so what would a court of law award me? Shouldn't the threat of hell be worth millions? In fact, why not another class action suit against the church? They knew she was there - they couldn't miss her hat. And she was clever - she changed clothes every Sunday and also changed positions - sat beside or behind me sometimes. She altered her voice when singing hymns. SHE FANNED HERSELF TO SPREAD THE PERFUME with a hanky, a prayer card, or even the bible. The church would TURN OFF THE ELECTRIC FANS when the sermon was underway, allowing her even more time to do her smelly work. She fanned harder when the priest spoke. I'm sure of it.

Not only have I lost my faith, but I have allergies, no doubt contracted during those long hours in that wooden pew. Allergies should add to the punitive damages. And don't get me started on incense. I was incensed for at least 18 years. Who should pay for that? Every big holy day, out came the incense. They'd wave it around the church like they were trying to INFECT everyone. I could hardly breathe. Today I cannot walk into a candle shop. Potpourri makes me grab my chest. That should be worth something.

And when I worked at my last job, it was ALWAYS somethin'. I should sue. Mornings, afternoons - it made no difference. Always somethin'. Somethin' happened all the time! I'm sure it was deliberate!

Thursday, May 26, 2005

A look inside.

I need friends.

It's an admission that's hard to make. It feels like a failure. I'm not even sure I'll publish this to the blog once I write it. I feel a need to get the thoughts out of my system.

Originally, I planned to try to keep this blog light and wiseass. But you know, without polarity there's no contrast, so maybe a deeply felt emotion will bring some balance to the other material.

Work has been one of my problems. In the years I was in radio, I spent way too much energy on the job - my ego was invested in it. The quality of the work was key. Absorbing. Consuming. There was little time for little else, except my wife, dog, and some trips.

I guess somewhere along the line I picked up the "Do A Good Job and you'll be rewarded" mindset, but it's not necessarily true, and certainly myopic. I have been described as 'taking things too personally,' and I do. I suspect it's an issue related to lack of self-worth.

My career took me all over - born in Philadelphia, then after college: Annapolis. MD; Charlottesville, VA; Wilmington, DE; Pittsburgh, PA; Phoenix, AZ; Wilmington DE again; Scranton, PA: Hamilton, Ont, Canada; Montreal, P.Q., Canada; Buffalo, NY; San Diego, CA; Houston, TX; Syracuse, NY; Minneapolis, MN; and finally - in a non- career move, Austin, TX.

I consulted in Orlando, Buffalo, New Orleans, Cleveland, and Monterey.

I've described the job in radio as being a nomad, farming the nation's antenna farms; a drifter, especially true when the business was populated by more mom and pop stations; now there are several big companies, and you don't have to move so much to climb the ladder. In my last position, I worked for 4 companies in 12 years at basically the same desk. Programmed 4 stations. 3 were the same station, changed again and again by research, competition, ownership, or whimsy.

My friends are great people. But the price I've paid for my career is that they are scattered in all these and other places, as most of them were from the same industry, making THEIR moves.
And you DO lose contact over the miles and years as life intrudes. When we do reconnect it's as if we pick up right where we left off.

If we all lived in the same city, I think we'd be busy ALL THE TIME. I envy those who have that support and friendship-fun in their lives.

So I find myself again starting over. And you know, the older you are, I think the harder it IS because many people have established patterns or friends already... it's harder to penetrate their circles.

I suffer from disassociation - I stand outside the circle looking in, wanting to belong, but not feeling a part of it.

Maybe if you read this you'll see some truth in it for you, somehow. If not, please excuse the self-indulgence.

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Ask me the right question.

First of all, the AC seems to be fixed. Just in case you read several of these entries, you'll be happy for us. Also, the igniter on the outdoor grill has been fixed, though I never officially noted that, because it signals a change from wife cooking to husband cooking, propane explosions, arm hair burns, and spider flambe'.

Second, a request.

The day after my friend asked me if there were any scorpions, I saw my first one.

The day after my friend asked if I had seen any snakes, I saw one.

The day after my friend asked if I had seen any rattle snakes, I drove over a long snake. Its pedigree unknown, I shrieked like a school girl. I hate snakes.

So if you are my friend, or even if not, will you please ask if I have seen any killer babes with long hair, in spike heels and mini skirts?

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

The first degree.

I remember sitting in grade school - first grade. I remember vividly. Back of the room (alphabetical seating). It was 2:35. We got out at 3:00. I didn't think I could stand it till 3:00 - the clock surely had stopped. Time had slowed WAY down. And my parents wanted me to go on to high school and even college. 16 YEARS to go, and I couldn't get through the last 25 minutes.

Well, from the entry below, you can see that here in Austin, where it seems heat is upon us like feathers on ducks, the air conditioning in this new house would be pretty nice if it worked. Yesterday was the first try. No go!

Today brought uniforms. After hours of first grade time passage, Repairman One called for Repairman Two, who seems to have figured out a fix, since the temperature actually has dropped a degree. Never would I have believed such a small change would matter.

Especially in first grade.

Words you don't ever want to hear!


These are words that, like, "Ooops," as you drift under the anaesthetic going into surgery, signal possible trouble.

Our new house air conditioning isn't conditioning the air very much. The technician - who genuinely seems concerned and helpful, called someone more knowledgeable (I credit him enormously for admitting that) and they suspect design problems. You don't want to hear this going into a hot Texas summer in which you need air conditioning.

I feel a song verse coming on:

Sweat is what we do
'cause we haven't got a clue
why the thing on the wall
doesn't help at all


Ceilings, nothing more than ceilings
where vents blow warm kisses in the air...
nah, I don't want to go there.

Okay, but I'm no Yoko Ono, though I might just go into my closet and scream for a while anyway.

If you ever have a house built, be sure you have tranquilizers first.

Monday, May 23, 2005

Smile and say THAT HURTS

I can't get pictures to post since the last one down below. It seems to be a jam in the software trail, which is free anyway, so you can't complain too loudly or they'll send nuns to whack your knuckles with 3 sided rulers that HURT.

And now, ONE WEEK after my digital camera's warranty expires, it won't work properly. Get this: cost new: about $270. MINIMUM cost to fix - no matter what - by the manufacturer - $220 plus shipping $25.

Do you think there are robots in Japan that can figure out how to squeeze that warranty period?

Konica-Minolta, I love your camera, but not your nasty repair policy!

I don't know what to do - it takes pictures, but the viewfinder doesn't work. So I have to compose on that tiny screen which is all but impossible to see in any light anyway.

Maybe I should hit it hard - it's gonna cost the cost of a new one anyway. UNLESS by some miracle of East-West cooperation, they grant me a GRACE PERIOD, and fix it free, since it was so CLOSE to warranty anyway.

Ladies and gentlemen, place your bets.

Deep in the Heat of Texas

We love Texas. We had the opportunity to move anywhere we wanted, and, perhaps as a reaction to years in the cold and snow - the last 12 in Minnesota, chose this dirt farm in Texas. I write "dirt farm" as we are battling with whomever over the bad landscaping. What we have is mostly dirt and unfilled promises. Somewhere, there's a former high school cheerleader, now housewife to 5 little 'uns, with another on the way, standing in the doorway of her trailer in nowhere Oklahoma or West Texas, Where The Devil Summers, and I feel a geological bond over the miles and dust devils.

But a ray of sunshine is cast on our rays of sunshine (High 96 or so today) as I have just fired up our air conditioners for their very first time. (Yes - plural - we are ZONED - in a non druggie way.) And while our kindred spirit in the paragraph above has that noisy window model which smells like cheap after shave since she nagged her man about the moldy taint, and he, riding with Jose Cuervo, dumped a whole half bottle of Aqua Velva into the filter and told her to shut the * up!

Ours is a new house. We prefer wide open windows, but I thought it wise to run the refrigeration today, while the builder is still in bidness, just in case it spits or belches or arcs or seeps.

And for that housewife, I offer a song:

I gave you my trust, my dreams and my dust
for 6 lonely years in a field
just know that the heat makes every man I meet
look like a ticket out
of Costco.

Saturday, May 21, 2005

There's something out there!

Each night, as the sun dips below the vast Texas horizon, and little things scurry out from their hidey holes, the dusk brings a glow. Rock faces and concrete reflect heat like a singles bar men's room mirror at closing time. Well, okay, not that kind of heat.

And as the dusk turns to a thin line on the horizon, with cobalt blue and purple above, a lone star twinkles (Texas, you know)... and something starts making an odd noise in a tree not far away.

I have investigated: sent rays of powerful flashlight beam into the tree, trying to catch the glowing eye of whatever thing is there. I am reminded of the movie Predator. It sees me. I see nothing.

It sounds - I swear I'm not making this up - like the sword of Zorro. Swish swish swish!!! Now I am pretty sure it isn't Mr or Ms Z. It has stamina. Goes all night. Off in the distance another exchanges data packets.

I honestly know of no creature that makes a noise like that. It remains stationary, so it is not a bat flying about on noisy wings.

We live in a new development with only 17 homes occupied: No crop circles, though there are dirt circles from landscaping hell, but that's a whole other story.

Thursday, May 19, 2005

LUCAS good. CRITICS bad.

Excuse ME, George Lucas is a mediocre filmmaker? (I've now read that in two reviews - I won't reveal the sources - both print - so I won't embarass the hacks who wrote this.) By what measure could you make that statement? His films have made more money than mere mortals can conceive!!! And yes, there were one or two which didn't work, but c'mon! Since when is successful, multi-BILLION dollar work mediocre? KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE (or make your own) should be film school rule #1. He's done it.

And along the way, George invented/developed countless technological advances; leaps, really.

A local sign says "SITH HAPPENS." I like that.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Pool maintenance

Grade and high school years were years when I'd play with my "chemistry set" in the basement. I should be dead from the stuff I inhaled... acid fumes, melting lead smoke, and of course, using the sheet of asbestos they provided, back in that day of innocense. "Look, I can't feel the flame! (And in 50 years my lung will cough up like beef jerky.)"

Well, sir, the years have passed, and I find myself the proud co-owner of my wife's pool. I say "my wife's," because the deal was, when we had this house built, that she'd get her lap pool and I'd get a dedicated "listening to music (not her) room."

As part of our contract, our pool builder generously donated 3 months of pool boy service. These guys would zip in, test the water, usually add some brew, maybe suck a few dead bugs and debris through the hose, and then split, leaving behind an undecipherable sheet with a smiley face by their signature.

I used to work at a BIG conglomerate where the CEO also signed his name with a smiley face. Hint: people don't smile back, they shake their heads sideways. But that's another story.

I was provided with a quote for continuing pool service, which is almost 4 times my cable bill - for ONCE A WEEK visits; but heck, I also received my OWN chemical testing kit (flashback!!!) and how hard can it be?

When grown men ask, "How Hard Can It Be?" it's probably a good time to get the yellow pages handy.

So, I just tested my - sorry - my wife's pool water. I read the instructions three times and then again for each test.

I have learned some truths:

Here's what they don't tell you in the manual:

1- The test kit has you add drops of chemicals to water samples. Those drops also REALLY BADLY stain Khaki shorts.

2- They say to test water at elbow depth. When you fall in, note that depth is higher than you think it is, because the instructions mean from top down, not bottom up.

3- Test number 3 is interrelated with number 5, I think, and one screws up the other. If you EVER tried to adjust color on an early color TV, where you could turn up each of three colors, you know how much trouble you can get into.

4- If you don't have the right chemical balance, your pool filter will take off like at Atlas Missle in the night. The next morning your immediate area will be covered with Diatomacious earth (white powder) which will harden harder than a diamond. Your neighborhood coke addict will be trying to inhale the coating on your BMW.

5- Calcium builds better bones, but doesn't build better pool tile, so you have to be concerned about that. I don't know what you do.

6- When the wind blows your socks into the water you can retrieve them after you fall in.

7- Ph requires a Ph.d. to adjust. That's why it's called Ph. I propose a reality show in which Paris Hilton adjusts Ph and then swims in it.

8- When you put acid in the pool to adjust the Ph, your hands will get wet somehow. It won't hurt right away. But Yyu'll know that it's acid when you touch the doorknob to get back into the house, and it hisses. And your wife will know everything - even from miles away. When you walk the half empty acid bottle through the house, she'll know that too.

9- There's more, but the page in my manual is badly stained, smeared, and half eaten away

Mice and Prostitution.

Richard, our Expert bug and pest guy, left some sticky traps in our garage on his last Death To The Scorpion Scourge Crusade. I like Richard - he has childlike enthusiasm for spreading bug death. I used to pour paint thinner into ant holes and set it afire when I was a child. We share a bond.

Several of the sticky traps in the garage have caught mice flatfooted. I say flatfooted because their tiny feet became glued to the trap. One died with no apparent struggle, the other left fur, scat, and my crying wife in its wake. Actually, not wake, but I couldn't resist the pun. I scraped little mousey off the sticky stuff and he limped away. I thought I heard a vulture laugh but maybe it was a caw.

Maybe we caught mousey twice - who knows?

Anyway, today I went looking for mouse traps. I raised mice in high school as a 'science project' and know firsthand that one and one equals a trazillion mice in about 6 weeks. So I discovered someone has literally built a better mousetrap! In fact, it's the same guys who make the old reliable mousetrap, the one that has snapped dad's fingers for decades, not to mention surprised cheese raiders with tails.

The new one looks VERY benign - the death part takes place out of view and you simply haul the thing to the trash and push "release" while looking at your shoes. No mouse carcass. No tiny limos. No service.

Of course it COSTS 4 times what the regular one costs, but that's the price of Progress when a little guilt tax is thrown in.

Meanwhile, I read today that Nevada is struggling with taxing prostitution. Some feel the tax would help legitimize what is already legal in 10 of 17 counties. A number discussed was $2 a head. They projected that would bring $3,200,000 into the state coffers over the next two fiscal years!!! Do the math!

So, whether you are a man or a mouse, be warned - there apparently are better traps out there.

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

No pictures - just like radio!

Over the past few daysI have been sending pictures through all sorts of media to this blog with no results. I haven't tried smoke signals, but if I had the software, I might.

What worries me is that there are MANY multiples (think the Olsen Twins in an infinity mirror) of the same pictures out there in cyberspace somewhere, since the software I have tried says 'picture successfully published...'

Maybe somewhere there's a censor.

Maybe Bob Sagett will do a show - Stupid Pictures That Didn't Make It To the Blogs. Right, Bob. Revive that career. (A friend knows him and says he's a nice guy - I think he looks like the suck Student Council president from my high school... he was friendly to me to ask for a vote, but never before or after. I think he became a doctor. I wish him a latex allergy.)

Anyway, if you see pictures there will have been a breakthrough. If you see them on your radio, well, you might try another kind of mushroom on that pizza.

The face in the flower stem

A local guy is pictured in today's Austin American-Stateman, next to his flower stem in which he sees the face of Jesus. Apparently some people do see it and some don't. I don't. I did like the one comment where someone saw Kris Kristopherson.

I vaguely remember some nights in the 70s staring at static swirlies on TV long after sign-off and seeing faces. But perhaps it was the late, late hour, or something.

The flower is reported to be offered on E-Bay for $5000. Better hurry, though, with wilt and all. If it doesn't wilt, well, then, maybe the miraculous IS at work. Or holy varnish, batman!

This could open a whole industry: Faces in Places. Think what a monster bucket of popcorn would bring - whole populations of gargoyles and popeyes.

What's next? A robin's egg with Robin William's face? Gomer Pile in a rug?

This is a job for the truly paranoid - you know - they're LOOKING AT YOU!!!

Monday, May 16, 2005


Our Gated Community Where We Dedicate Ourselves To The Preservation of Nature - or something like that - has offered property owners "An Overview of the Art and Pleasure of Fly Fishing." I once knew a record company rep who would escape everday life for the wilds of standing in a Montana stream as often as he could, and I've seen A River Runs Through It, so am anxious to learn more. I always figured standing in running water would make me want to pee, and then you have to strip off those chest high waders (DON'T YOU???)

The part that slays me is that Fly Casting Techniques will he held on the pond on Hole 6 of the gold course. What a collision of two cultures - the 300 yard booming tee shot with a club head the size of a toaster and the weight of, well, a titanium toaster - and the gentle flick of the hand tied feather of a baby fly dropped gently as if on a breeze, a bug breath of immeasurable energy.

"Discussions and refreshments follow." Hey, did you see that caddy grab his ASS when we hooked that sumbitch? Haw!


Now THIS is an immensely talented dude. Chappelle's show presented some truths in hilarious ways - turning his mirror onto society in a way that could serve as a lesson while coated in laughter. That's a tough tightrope to walk!

Rumors now surround his trip to Africa. Comedy Central says, 'Show, what show?'

http://www.time.com/time/arts/article/0,8599,1061415,00.html gives hope to those who appreciate Dave for his ability. In a sense, this follows the piece I wrote below about stars being real people. If the Time article is correct, Dave is seeking his true innner voice and you have to applaud him for that, because the pressure to NOT do that right now must be way beyond the comprehension of most of us.

Sunday, May 15, 2005

Star Trek goes away; FIREFLY comes back!

I have been hooked on several versions of Star Trek. Enterprise wasn't one, though I did watch when TiVo had nothing better saved. I thought the acting in the 'parallel anti universe' episodes toward the end of the run was among the worst I've EVER seen on any TV show, including the first StarTrek. Instead of portraying the opposite sides of the characters, it seems as if the director just had everyone yell their lines.

Except Hoshe (not sure how to spell) - she was good served hot.

Then the final goodbye was actually a redemption. Well thought out, with a good twist. But I wish Piccard would have been on. The last line, read by three of the captains over each ship shot was a good idea, too.

What a franchise! And who'd EVER predict that hammy Captain Kirk would develop into a wonderful portrayal of Denny Crane in Boston Legal. GOOD FOR WILLIAM SHATNER!!

And that brings up a shoutout tout to the cast and crew of FIREFLY which was cancelled but is out there on DVD and in movie form in the fall
http://www.apple.com/trailers/universal/serenity/serenity_large.html. http://www.serenitymovie.com/
VERY well written (Joss Whedon) and acted in a way you have to see to 'get.' If you like non-typical sci-fi with a great style, this is IT. Wiseass through and through, too.


A friend was in a movie scene as an extra with John Travolta recently. He didn't TALK to him, but there was a moment he reported when Travolta locked eyes with him for a second or two. My friend looks somewhat like Tom Cruise, so maybe that was why the look.

There are stars who - as part of their charm - make you feel they would be wonderful friends and completely engaging as such. This could account for some of their popularity.

My list includes John Travolta - boy would I like to go fly with him!

And Tom Hanks. There's a guy who is just... a regular guy (so it seems.)

I once got to speak with John Candy for about a half hour and he too was just real folks. What a kick. I asked him what it was like to see his name on a movie theater sign or see a cardboard cutout of himself and he said it just seemed like another person. I was on the radio for about 6 years altogether and felt my on the air self was not the self I lived in. So I get what he meant, on a much, much smaller scale.

I think Julia Roberts would be real. Natalie Portman interviews as if she'd be that way too.

But you never know... the seduction of the biz, the hangers-on - it has to be like crack.

Some celebs actively avoid that and you get the sense they know it's a cancer of some sort.

We elevate our stars because of their talent, but don't you think somewhere in that popularity is just a little "they're really like us" in our dreams? And wouldn't it be cool to NOT be impressed, to hang out without awe, and be friends?

Thursday, May 12, 2005


The news cycle seems to have backpeddled on the story about the Cessna 2 seater flying into restricted airspace over D.C. Just a couple of lost guys (one an INSTRUCTOR!?) But the pictures of staffers running from the capitol and white house, while guards yelled for them to clear out, looks like a B movie poster.

I thought we have a new homeland security laser system in place that flashes laser bursts of light to pilots in that space. Red means turn around - do a 180! I am not making this up. I saw it on the news.

Once I - as a low hour pilot boy - flew a friend into the New York airspace - this was many years ago - I think we were under the controlled airspace they have in such areas, but it was as if someone threw a big handful of planes at us - they were everywhere, and instead of flying over his boyhood home in Redbank, we tucked tail and got the heck out of there.

My point is that that's a major population density. They had to know they were POSSIBLY approaching a nerve - the real G spot.

And that those lasers don't work. Save them for the 4th of July as a treat, D.C.

I propose really big bottle rockets. I know they don't start fires on roofs because my friend Dave always had illegal fireworks for the 4th of July, and when the stuff came down on his roof, it didn't burn. Bottle rockets are way cool, make neat trails in the air, go like a son of a gun, can be lit even after the fuse goes out, would scare the bejessus out of any pilot, and would cost a lot less than all the technology we've wasted.

Heck, you could arm the populace. Anybody in this neighborhhod see a plane, light up the sky!

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Orange I smart?

This is what happens when you believe the acid satin that says TAN will be TAN. It's better now, but I am in denial over the whole sordid process and don't want to trouble your dreams with stains.


Somebody asked, "Why do you blog - nobody reads these things." I said, "It's a wiseass outlet." "Why pay retail for wiseass, when you can get it cheap at an outlet?"

I realize few people will find this.

Search engines employ automated spiders - programs that go out to discover content, and, if you use the right words, or have enough links to and from your blog, you get listed. The list, however, could be millions of entries long, and I already know I'm lost in the back, like in grade school. (Maybe the word "lost" will pull up the ABC TV show's fans of LOST, and direct them here, where they too, will be lost.)

Anybody remember The BLOB? A 1958 movie starring, if memory serves ...STEVE McQUEEN? Well, it had nothing to do with Blogging, but it could serve as a good metaphor, as this Blob grew like Kirstie Alley and consumed everything. I find my blog is consuming my thoughts as I have repressed my wiseass for so long while working in corporate America, that it now threatens my waking moments.

I used to capture the CEOs memos where I worked, and rewrite them, adding some necessary wiseass, then quickly delete, for fear of being caught by the VP in Charge of Behavior as we were seriously warned that our E mails would be scruntized by the VP in Charge of Scrutiny.

Once upon a time, I had a co-worker who had 'captured' official letterheads and then issued fake press releases on all sorts of silly things. They were WAY out there. He was brilliant. He nailed press release speak. Eventually the FBI came to explain to him that the joke was over. He stopped. Later, he died in his 40s. Since he was deeply into conspiracy theories, you have to wonder.

I figure wiseass blogging is the adult equivalent of a teenager popping pimples. Sometimes you have to do it.

Vault THIS!

Having recently moved, we gathered up our important documents (note - you are in our will!) and as responsible, semi-mature people, thought we ought to get these things into a safe place where the dog couldn't possibly eat them.

Like a Bank. Like the bank up the street. The one with the nice carpet, plasma screen TV, reading center, smiling personal banker, and free coffee and goodies. "I'd like a safe deposit box, please." "Certainly."

After screens of personal information are input, after my driver's license verifies my smile, we march to the hand scanner. Three impressions are taken before we are admitted past the huge vault door to the inner sanctum lined with shiny tiny locked doors. TV cameras watch. I am instructed how to use the key (teeth out.)

As my personal banker opens my new special place and... the box is PLASTIC. TUPPERWARE?

Another illusion shattered. I'd give up the coffee for metal.


Concrete can be stained. I am writing about a step or two beyond Bubba parking his leaky '75 Chevy with the achy breaky cylinder head gasket and oil pan drip. As we have a new house with a 350 foot snake sunning strip/driveway, it fell upon me to investigate our options.

Staining concrete is done by chemical reaction. Mixed with acid are minerals. You spray the stuff on with a garden sprayer. If the sprayer doesn't blow up, (or does), and you are downwind, you then can get some on your legs. This will be identified by the burning sensation. Or you can get a snoot full, a lung full, or an eye full, all while your overspray kills all vegetation alongside the concrete. Your shoes could melt and stick you there while the snakes come to investigate what you did.

Acid costs about $65 a gallon. Then there's the SEALER which costs as much or more. I'd need a tank trunk full.

As an experiment, I carefully stained the cement walkway behind our house. After the hissing stopped, after I neutralized and power hosed, it looked like Tony The Tiger's back. I then tried several colors. The Tan turned out orange. The Wheat turned out oranger. I put greater concentrations on. I mixed colors. Finally, we have what appear to be rust stains. Luckily, it more or less matches some of the stones we have in our wall. I know when to leave well enough alone.

As for the driveway, well, we found a per-fesh-o-nal. He's lowered his price to about a third of what others have quoted. My skepticism is rust colored now.

Monday, May 09, 2005

Save the Economy

I seem to be on a save the world kick. Well, Mr. and Ms. Gov-i-mint Leader, here's one that will work! Simply print all new paper currency out of Marijuana. Some lighter strength at the $1 Washington level, and on up to killer weed at the Franklin. Then make it legal to consume.

We've all had our incomes go up in smoke anyway.

But now the money supply will effectively disappear and boost the economy as demand soars. Remaining and old bills will be worth MORE. Crime will plummet.

Thomas Jefferson farmed hemp, didn't he?

Saturday, May 07, 2005


Oreo cookies are now available with peanut butter filling. I will now ruin your diet if you continue to read this. As powerful as cold fusion, I think I have a formula that will be forever known as Oreocrack.

My recipe:
1- buy the Oreos With Peanut Butter Filling
2- remove a cookie
3- crack it in half
4- very lightly sprinkle a hint of salt on the peanut butter
5- reassemble cookie
6- blast off

File this under my Theme, Making The World A Better Place.

Nature is a mother.

Today we took a nature walk with a geologist. It turns out everything was once Dino Toe Jam. Oceans were in places you wouldn't expect. Water can move anything, but might damage your furniture in transit. Bolders to apples, it's all cobble eventually. This professional knew how to find oyster shells in a field. They were very old, and the oysters had departed. Later I found a golfball but the golfer had also departed. Hopefully not from eating the oysters. Later we enjoyed a picnic style breakfast at the property of The Developer of our Development. His house is beautiful except for the windows that look like eyes and the big window below that looks like teeth.

Friday, May 06, 2005

Cheaper Than Dirt

Maybe that used to be a good line but now it isn't.

We live in a New Development, Dedicated to the Preservation of Nature and A Great Way of Life, or something like that. Of the 400 future homesights, maybe 14 are finished, i.e.: lived in, another two dozen in some stage of build, from earthscraping to finishing the dancing dolphins in tile in the pool.

The lot next to ours went for over $300,000!!!

Turns out dirt ain't cheap.

But Talk is Cheap, still.

I think "Cheaper Than Politicians' Promises" works.

On another subject, since this is my second posting, I am happy to see the first one worked, and am glad I can finally take the 'little voice inside my head' out for a walk now and then.

How to Make The World A Better Place

This seems a great way to start a blog. I can help the world for my fellow citizen, netizen, blogee. I may or may not have many ideas to contribute, but the world got the way it is in quite a while, so give me some time. I only ask if you make money off of one of my ideas, you give me some.

At the moment, somewhere just beyond the trees that eclipse a view to the real world beyond them, some heavy machinery is building more of paradise, like it said in the development brochure. Every second or so, I hear the backup beeping of what must be many harnessed horsepower, placing architect whimsey here or there. The beeping is making me crazy. So I got to thinking - to make the world a better place, of course - why does it beep? To warn workers that they could lose that leg or whatever - I get that. But WHY BEEP? What if it was a nice voice (and since so many of the workers - all - are male - a nice FEMALE voice.) Instead of beeping, it should say YES! YES! YES! like Meg Ryan in that movie with Billy Crystal.

So there. My work for Friday is done.