Monday, June 30, 2008

Top Ten Things Overheard On My Family Road Trip

When I fully recover, next summer, I shall post about the mileage odyssey that was my recent family vacation road trip. Did you know that with three stops (1 to eat, 2 to see the redwoods and a third for a catnap at one of our state’s lovely rest areas) that you can drive from northern Oregon to southern California in only one day? Literally one full day. As in leave Oregon at 9 in the morning and walk in your front door at 9 the next morning. I now have a whole new appreciation for truckers, several of whom I may have inadvertently cut off during those last few harrowing hours of my zombie driving. Having seen the sunrise and sunset and sunrise again, I can’t help but wonder if the feelings I experienced are the same feelings astronauts experience with every full orbit around the earth. I’m pretty sure I saw a cow tap dancing with a llama about an hour north of Magic Mountain on Interstate 5, but then I was pretty loopy at the time and had was listening to a Spanish speaking radio station because that’s all that would come in…

10. No that’s not me. It’s the cows we are driving by.

9. Quit calling me Mommy because Mommy is driving and I’m not. Seriously girls, that hurts.

8. Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy, the twins want to listen to High School Musical again!

7. Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy, the twins want to watch the High School Musical DVD again!

6. Oh the DVD player stopped working right in the middle of High School Musical. What a shame!

5. We’re going to a cheese factory. Why? What type of question is why? Because they make cheese there. You’ll like it. Ok, here’s the deal: if you go and pretend to enjoy it, I’ll buy you an ice cream cone.

4. You know, you just don’t get to pull over on the side of the road and watch a cow give birth in Southern California. Of course if you did pull over, it would cause a Sig Alert.

3. No Ethel, that deer is just sleeping in the middle of the highway. I’m pretty sure they all do it.

2. Now that everything is all cleaned up and we’re back on the road again, I would like to state that for the record, Ethel’s elapsed time between saying she needed to hurl and the actual commencement of hurlfication was less than 2 minutes. We can now plan accordingly next time.

1. Ok, in my defense, I thought driving 18 straight hours would have more of a Smokey and the Bandit feel to it.

Friday, June 27, 2008

# 2

Ok, you have to be careful when you says things like #2 when you have young children, provided that’s the name you’ve given the associated bodily function, assuming you even know what I’m talking about here. You also have to be careful using #2 when you have twins, especially when the twins have long since figured out which number they are as it relates to who was born first or second. # 2 is also the car fielded by Kurt Busch in NASCAR’s Cup Series and Clint Bowyer in the Nationwide Series and Jack Sprague in the Craftsman Truck Series, but more importantly, it’s the number made famous by Rusty Wallace, even though Dale Earnhardt drove a number 2 for a few years. But all of the twosyness aside, this # 2 is about something entirely different.

Saturday June 28th marks the second blogaversary of this very collection of tomes about cheese, twins, being the office idiot and occasional references to Englebert Humperdink, for no reason other than his name is fun to say and ‘After the Loving’ has to be one of the coolest schmaltzy love songs ever. Yep, the Wonderful World of Nothing is turning 2. It’s been a good ride lo these last 610 or so posts. I’ve met great new people through this blog, well not that they are new, they’ve all been people for quite some time (and no, I am not saying any of you are old), it’s just that they are new to me. It’s as if I’ve got a whole group of new friends even though we’ve never met. And whenever I write about Clay Aiken, it seems I make a whole new group of enemies I’ve never met, but that’s a discussion for another time, because I don’t write about him very often. I do however write about Barry Manilow, but that’s because his music is kickawesome and Copacabana should be taught in elementary school. It really sums up life- the pleasures of youth, dealing with unfortunate events and becoming a washed up dancer in a disco, or something like that. I think she also drank herself blind and I know she lost her youth and she lost her Tony. It’s also a terrific ‘whodunit’ as they try to figure out who shot who. Plus it has a nice beat and if life has a nice beat, then you just gotta dance.

I started this blog because I have long searched for an outlet where I could be me, as it isn’t always appreciated or welcomed in the office. I had originally planned to start something like blogging a year before I did while recovering from my open heart surgery to replace my aortic valve with one from a catfish. Just seeing if you’re paying attention. However, recovering from open heart surgery isn’t as fun as they make it seem on TV, so I never got the chance to start writing and then was back to work before I knew it. I felt disappointed in myself for not beginning the writing I wanted to do, so about a year later to mark the first anniversary of my chicken heart valve (again, just making sure you are still with me here), I took to blogging. So, I will mark my two years of blogging Saturday and my 3 year anniversary of getting my donkey heart valve (yep, still checking on you) on Monday.

I find myself getting pretty hindsightful (sorry, it’s just so easy to make up words when you can’t find something better to say) each June 30th as I remember my surgery for some reason. The hindsightfulness finds me wondering about past experiences I have known. For instance, I’m pretty sure I had a Ponch action figure and his CHP motorcycle from ‘CHiPs,’ but do not remember what I did with it. I also think back to that time I lathered a bowl of ice cream with an expired can of Redi-Whip even though I knew that it was expired. ‘Seriously, what could go wrong, it’s not that old’ were my famous last words that unfortunate evening. More importantly, my wistfulness also extends to thinking about this blog.

I’ve had a lot of fun with it. I have enjoyed coming up with crappy Aprils Fool’s jokes the last two years and trying to complete memes without tagging anyone who might get angry with me. I’ve enjoyed leaving comments on everyone else’s blogs and reading everyone’s experiences and takes on life. It’s like I’ve lived vicariously through so many of you. It also makes me think I need to get out a little more, but that’s not a knock on anyone who reads this blog; it’s a knock on my Prime Grade A level of boredness. I don’t think boredness is a word, but it makes saying I’m boring sound so much less depressing.

I also remember with fondness that time I got to meet the HR folks for a little ‘get together’ about my blogging at work about work. It was a pleasant meeting with lots of professionalism, except that one part where I asked them if they at least liked what they had read, which by the way now tops my list of things NOT to say to my HR representatives. Also on that list are: ‘I really don’t like working for 8 straight hours because I am prone to chronic boredom and avoid it when I can’ and ‘if I didn’t attend the sexual harassment class, does that mean I can still get away with stuff because I haven’t been properly trained yet?’ For the record, ‘no one said I actually had to return to the office after yesterday’s fire drill, is that a new policy’ is also on the list.

All in all, it’s been a great ride and I wish I had started this endeavor a year earlier. But then again, if I had started it a year earlier it’s one more year of momentous occasions for Lucy and Ethel and work deadlines that I may have missed because I was too busy trying to de-screw up the HTML on my blog or trying to combine words to make one word (the true measure of laziness, by the way) or coming up with bad book or TV ideas or extolling the virtues of a cheese laden life. So, thanks to everyone who comes by here each day. It really means a lot, unless you only came here once and then didn’t come back. That’s a major dose of rejection right there. Seriously though, thank you!!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Not In My Back Yard!

I was shocked when my best bud and his wife sent me this story: . It is about (and I can’t believe I’m even going to type this) a recent bust of people making illegal cheese in (and this is where it hurts even more) my current hometown of Corona, California! It’s shocking and it’s appalling. It’s shappaling, actually. These people are casually making cheese and as the story says, it was unsanitary and impure cheese. They were soiling the good name of cheese and the cheese itself. Well ok, soiling might be a bit extreme, but my hometown doesn’t need this type of press. Surely there must be robberies or prostitution rings or a local political scandal dealing with corruption or robberies or prostitution rings to write about instead.

And to make matters worse, and I know you are finding that possibility to be as impossible as I do, they also had 13 undocumented heads of cattle. Now that’s just sick! Who wants to carry severed cattle heads around and why would you want to in the first place. What do you gain from doing that? No wonder the cheese is unsafe. Mutilated cows aren’t really the cleanest things. Oh wait, I’ve just been informed that ‘heads of cattle’ is just how they COUNT the WHOLE cattle body. Well, I guess that’s not so bad. Just get them documented. Documenting cattle? I guess that makes the 13 heads (and bodies) illegal aliens of the bovine world? Seriously, these are the jokes…though isn’t that a song by The Police?

It’s all just too horrible to comment on. Although, if the authorities only seized the cheese and left the cattle and cheese making equipment, it must still be at the house where the arrest was made. And if I know where that house is located…I’m just sayin’. After all, at the end of this week, I will be at a real cheese factory taking a real cheese factory tour (and eating real cheese and ice cream samples, which really has nothing to do with this story but I just wanted to mention it again) and theoretically will learn the basics of how cheese is made. I’m sure I can fill any gaps in my knowledge after the tour by Googling ‘how to make cheese,’ since I’m sure there will be plenty of gaps in my knowledge because even though it’s a tour of a cheese factory, I still have the attention span of a gnat that has been successfully swatted at a few too many times.

Now I know what you’re thinking: gheesh that guy’s a big hypochondriac. Wait, no, that’s not right, is it? Ok, you’re thinking I’m a big hypocrite as I sit here and rail against the cheese crooks even though I’m planning on taking their equipment and cattle (I do have a big backyard) and making my own cheese. There are differences in this case though. I’m going to apply for all the correct licenses and all that and then start making my cheese. If my applications are denied, at least I TRIED to get a license and let’s be honest; that’s one step further than the guys that got arrested.

Also on my side (and you may not have realized this) is the fact that I have a passion for cheese, so I wouldn’t be doing it for the money. I’d be doing it for the love of the substance that is sure to take a good number of years off the tail end of my life. Don’t get me wrong, if I can sell it, I will. But the money is just the icing on the cake that is the homemade cheese I will make. Hmmm, I’m not so sure that really worded out the way I wanted it to, but it kinda rhymed so I’m keeping it in. Long story short, if cheese can be made at home, what am I doing going to my cubicle every day? I can’t make cheese in there. It’s not like this writing thing is getting me anywhere, so cheese is where it’s at.

I have to drive a lot for my job and one of the places I regularly go is flooded with dairies. And a little tip: if it stinks the first time you drive by the dairies, it’s going to stink the 2nd, 3rd, 4th and yes, 5th time too. I tell you this so that you remember to turn off the outside air before you get to them, unlike me who had to drive by them every week for 2 months before I remembered to shut off all outside air. But enough of that. This story is about making cheese, not cutting it (sorry, but you knew a cutting cheese reference was inevitable). Lo the many times I have driven by those dairies and fantasized about working the cattle and making my own milk. Does that sound dirty to you? It did a little bit to me. Just a skosh. Let me retry it. Lo the many times I’ve driven by and wondered how cool it would be to have cows and be able to produce dairy products, and stuff. There, that’s better. Do they call them milk farmers or dairy farmers or maybe even cheese farmers? I’m partial to Cheesist.

At this point, I can really only tell you that there’s no real point to this post. It just provided me with a good excuse to talk about cheese for a while. But which do you think is better – Craig’s List or Ebay for slightly used cheese producing equipment? You gotta admit, it would be fun. And producing cheese in house will be a necessary first step for the fast food fondue place I want to open someday. You know, I think I can actually feel my arteries hardening and clogging already. There goes another one…

***This will probably be the last daily post for the next week as I get my first vacation, well non-hospital vacation, in over a year. I might try to set up one or two things that will post while I’m gone, but if not, have a great week and see you a few days before the 4th!!

Monday, June 23, 2008

When Bragging Bites (Also Known As An Exercise In Futility Or When Karma Slaps You A Good One Thus Leaving You Nothing To Write About, And Stuff)

So earlier in the day, I was discussing the topic of writer’s block and how I think I’m suffering from it. I also mentioned that I had plenty of ideas; I just didn’t want to pursue them as blog posts. Basically, I was bragging about blogging, or more to the point, bragging about having too much to blog about (but that doesn’t sound near as catchy as bragging about blogging). Now, 4 hours later, my mind is as dry as something that has been subjected to a lot of heat and has all dried up. See, I really thought the dry comparison was going to turn out better, except for the fact that my writing is currently blocked. Dry as a riverbed? Dry as a chamois left in the midsummer’s heat? Dry as a can of Planters Dry Roasted Peanuts? Dry as a freeze dried apricot that really isn’t that dry when you bite into it? Let’s just say ‘dry.’ Or maybe barren. Yes, I think barren works well. Not like Baron as in Snoopy and the Red Baron though. That’s much more colorful than barren, which is not colorful, for the record.

I think I tired this scam plan a few weeks ago. So, I will again just keep writing until I think I’ve written enough. I am not writing for substance, it’s purely word count at this point. I can tell you that summer started with quite a buzz for me. I stepped on a bee while flying kites with Lucy and Ethel last night. Unfortunately at the time, I was across the entire length of the field from where the rest of my family was swinging. They could see me hobbling and undoubtedly heard my cursing and yelling. Sadly (and I guess a lifetime of me acting the way I do has deserved this), they thought I was joking and failed to come to my assistance. I don’t know if the normal routine in your life has ever created an opportunity where you have been tasked with reeling in a kite being blown by huge wind gusts while hopping on one foot and simultaneously trying to extract a bee stinger, but I can definitively tell you that it’s rough. I can also tell you that as I was hobbling through the field with the hind end of Mr. Yellow and Black still in my foot that I swore off honey as retribution. Quick question: do BBQ Honey Fritos really count as honey? I was also going to remove The Bee Movie from its current high rotation on Lucy and Ethel’s playlist, but then I realized that I stepped on the bee. It was only doing what it was genetically and evolutionarilylylylyly programmed to do. After all, look at it this way: Godzilla or Mothra are the mean ones who go about (go about? What the heck is that, British slang?) stepping all over small towns and metropolitan centers. The armies that get crushed and swept aside are merely defending themselves. So in the end, I forgave the bee, see? See what I did there with the b followed by c? It’s the little things that get me…hey that all rhymed.

And speaking of getting me. Have you had any of those ‘yep, I am now officially old’ moments? Take a video I was watching on the ole CMT this weekend as an example. On came a Kid Rock video I started grooving to (and there’s another phrase I thought I would never say, for many reasons). As it’s playing, I mention that the song ‘All Summer Long’ would need to be added to my Official Summer CD, which would mean burning a new version and making a new cover to reflect the addition of the new song and then having to give everyone I already gave a copy to an updated version of the new Summer CD, but I digress. I also comment about how it sounds a lot like ‘Sweet Home Alabama.’ As I am patting myself on the back for my prowess with musical similarities, I realize that a major part of the song is actually ABOUT ‘Sweet Home Alabama’ and even samples parts of it. That is when I began feeling aged. Not AARP aged, but ‘wow did Erin Gray from Buck Rogers and Silver Spoons look good’ aged. And again, I can add yet another thing to the list of things I never thought I would say, or write or even communicate through various clicking sounds or hand gestures.

And speaking of Silver Spoons and other old television shows, I recently came across a website that play many of the shows I grew up watching. I realized two things while staying up until the early morning watching them recently. I realized how much I miss the shows I grew up with and how much I missed (and still remembered) the themes from all of those shows. After just a few shows, I began fast forwarding straight to the theme song and then switching to a different show to hear its theme song. This made me realize what a short attention span I have. This wasn’t a total surprise to me. I mean I can only sit at my desk for about 5 minutes without having to get up and peek into my coworkers’ cubes to say something annoying to them and I’m still trying to finish a project that may or may not have been assigned to be in December or was it September? Those 2 months can sound very similar when you aren’t paying real good attention, by which I mean being awake, when they are uttered.

How many of you remember that the theme to The Fall Guy was actually sung my the 6 million dollar man himself? That’s a favorite sing along tune of mine, but it sadly seems to be missing from most karaoke catalogues. Then there’s the CHiPs theme song. To this day I still cannot go for a bike ride without that song running through my head. And what about the one from The A-Team? Seriously, was there ever a better song to accompany a series of explosions? I think not. And lastly, whenever I walk into the hospital (which is more often than I walk into a bowling alley or a good delicatessen, which is a very sad statement to make), I always have to hum the Emergency Theme. And then there’s Nurse McCall, who you may know better as Dixie. Severe my artery and call Rampart, was she pretty!!

So what is my point or lesson to be learned today? Well, one should never brag about having too many things to write about because you never know when those ideas will vanish into thin air. And nurse Dixie was hot. And bee stings sting hurt. I think there was also something about cheese. And if there wasn’t, there most certainly should have been.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

To Fry Or Not To Fry

I'm wrapping up my week of looking back at past posts with this one. It's about food. And stuff. I guess you could say it's about foodstuffs.

Warning: the following is what happens when I run out of things to blog about...

Since watching Alton Brown make homemade corn dogs 4 months ago, I have been craving a deep fryer. Well, I’ve been craving homemade corn dogs and wanting a deep fryer. I’m not sure you can really crave a kitchen gadget, though maybe you can lust after them. The problem with this new desire is that I am on a diet. A serious diet and have been seeing results. So I’m not sure how well a deep fryer would jive with that. But then again, when deep fried crispy goodness is at stake, it jives all by itself. When you figure out what that means, would you mind letting me know?

I have a long love affair with kitchen things that plug in. I probably should learn how to cook given how much I like kitchen machines. I buy them, I use them (at least twice) and then I have to find a place to store them for the remainder of their time in the kitchen. The electric orange juicer, steamer, iced tea maker, bread maker, ice cream maker, popcorn popper and wireless BBQ meat thermometer that can transmit to the base unit up to 100 feet away all have a cozy place under my counters. The sane argument is whether or not I really need another bulky gadget taking up room in the kitchen.

I’d like to feel I can justify all these purchases which then makes it easier to justify adding another gizmo to the equipment list. While it takes more time to set up the orange juicer than it does to cut open an orange and juice it using the antique glass juicer that we already have, it’s so much cleaner and can automatically switch directions, which gets more juice out. Then again, hands can reverse direction too. The steamer was purchased for the exclusive purpose of steaming lobster tails. The fact that I could do corn, rice and other veggies at the same time only made the deal sweeter. And as if the redness of the lobster doesn’t tell you that it’s done, it has a neat timer. I have used the steamer 5 times in the last 7 years. A friend had one and I had to go buy one for me the next day. The iced tea maker comes in handy that one time of year when our relatives who drink iced tea come to town. Yeah, kinda hard to justify this one I guess.

Ahhh, but the bread maker, now that’s an entirely different story. You can make bread with it. Real bread. The kind of bread you eat and spread stuff on. I use this one a few times a year with the dough and the yeast and all of that. It makes me feel special knowing that I made bread, like a bread making elitist. Plus with WonderBread filing for bankruptcy, I figure I better take matters into my own hands. I don’t follow the recipes very well so I have never been able to duplicate what I’ve made but when you use it to sop up gravy, the taste is pretty irrelevant. I also use the pre-made bread mixes (that cost more than 2 loaves would in the store) and just dump them in and turn the unit on. Hmm, I think I’m making bread tonight! The ice cream maker doesn’t get used nearly enough, but once I photocopy every single page of my best bud’s ‘Ben and Jerry’s’ homemade ice cream recipe book, I swear I’ll use it more. Quick tip: combine a vanilla ice cream base with any flavor extract and you can’t go wrong. I have actually been challenged to an ice cream making contest by my parents’ neighbor. If anyone can think of an addictive ingredient that you crave constantly after tasting it once, and it’s still legal, please let me know. I really want to win this ice cream throw down.

Considering that you can pop a bag of popcorn in the microwave in less time than it takes to remove everything from the kitchen cabinets to find the popper, set it up, pour in the popcorn and pop it, I should probably turn this one into a planter for the back yard. But the real piece of resistance (that’s the American translation before you commence to start laughing at me) is my wireless BBQ meat thermometer and probe. Does the word probe make you as uncomfortable as it makes me? Seriously, I can now grill meats for long periods of time and monitor the temperature from the comfort of my recliner while watching NASCAR or my hammock or garage or yes, home computer. I tried from the cubicle, but apparently the distance is too long. This is one gadget that has revolutionized my life. I can be grilling a pork shoulder in the backyard while mowing the front yard. Or, I can have meat on the grill and be upstairs napping. It’s efficient…and yummy. This gadget will leave my kitchen only if it’s attached to my dead, cold hand. Fortunately, since it’s a thermometer, you’ll be able to tell just how cold my dead hands are.

The more I think about it, the more I think I should start inventing electrical kitchen gadgets that actually save no time but come in pretty boxes with lots of words to make it sound more necessary than it really is. Target devotes like half of their store to these things. Surely there is some money to be made in the cutthroat business of kitchen gadgets. I could develop the electric peanut sheller, the electric corn shucker, the electric nacho cheese warmer upper, the electric butter knife, the electric salter (which immediately makes it necessary to have an electric pepperer), the electric apple peeler and the electric pop top opener. Oh and how about the electric ‘get the ketchup out of the bottle assistant.’

So all of this brings me to what I really meant to write about when I sat down to start this: the issue of adding a deep fryer to the mix. See, a deep fryer might not really be bad for my diet. As I am fond of telling people, it’s not what you eat, but how much you eat. For the sake of the rest of this post, I hope you see it that way too. Now here are all of the reasons I need a deep fryer in my life:

Deep fried lobster tails
Deep fried hamburger or hot dog (just place them in the bun and deep fry the whole thing!)
Deep fried marshmallows
Deep fried smores
Deep fried dove bars on a stick
Deep fried bacon
Deep fried BBQ (I realize it sounds like a sin, but you haven’t tasted it yet. Then again, neither have I)
Deep fried sushi (yes I realize this would be just a very fancy fish stick, but I can’t handle sushi. Go ahead; send your hate mail now)
Deep fried fruit on a stick
Deep fried M&Ms
Deep fried cotton candy
Deep fried nachos (seriously, this one has potential)
Deep fried frozen bananas
Deep fried eggnog balls (I’m still figuring out how to work the logistics on this one)
Deep fried fruitcake (yes, I am the only living American who likes fruit cake)

And the one I call ‘The Magic Bullet’ – The Deep fried macadamia nut. It's a slow, but tasty death.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

They Actually Had To Do A Study For This???

You'll forgive me, I'm ASSuming, for reposting again. I promise I'll get you a new post or two early next week before I head to the land of Tillamook for cheesy gluttony.

OK, I just finished reading a Reuters news story that said researchers in Canada have discovered that young male students do better when being tutored in reading by female tutors rather than male tutors. The boys that were studied were in the third and fourth grades. Uhhhh, isn’t that when boys start to really ‘discover’ the fairer sex? And by discover, I mean notice their beauty and girly parts and stuff, in case you didn't know what I meant.

I wonder if the study involved watching Van Halen’s ‘Hot For Teacher’ video. There is also a nice tutoring scene in Adam Sandler’s ‘Billy Madison’ that comes to mind. And why do I hear Dustin Hoffman saying 'Mrs. Robinson, are you trying to seduce me' in the background? Were the results of this study really a surprise? Yeah the male tutor could use things like sports analogies and high fives to connect with his student, but all the female tutor has to do is show up and speak in soft dulcet tones.

Yes I’m probably being sexist here, but if I had to be tutored for work (ok, it’s more like WHEN I need to be tutored for work), I'm sure I would pay a lot more attention to the female work tutor than I would the man. Although, if the man liked NASCAR and had a real appreciation for the miracle that is the deep fryer, I’ll admit that we would not get much done because we’d be talking about what a God Dale Earnhardt was, what a little girly boy Jeff Gordon is and try to one up each other with stories of the greatest things we have ever tried to deep fry. Now if the work tutor was a woman who was paying attention to me (if only because she was being paid to help me become a better worker), I would most certainly give her more attention than the guy. I’d probably hang on her every word and become more productive over night. Unless of course she could name several NASCAR tracks and smiled at the mention of things like bounce houses...

OK, I got lost in my thoughts for a moment…what was I writing about? Yes, that’s right, the study that showed boys learn more from female tutors. Hmmmm, a bunch of awkward hormonal boys spending one on one time so close to a woman? Uh yeah, the tutor would have their full attention. I hope this wasn’t a very expensive study. The long term effects of mass amounts of cheese on an artificial human heart valve? That's an important study. Pubescenty boys digging lady-tutors? Kinda easy.

Speaking of recent published study results, I came across another one yesterday. I logged onto the wondernet last night ready to visit my favorite blogs, download pictures of Cheddar and Colby Jack cheese for my cubicle walls and to catch a few 30 Rock episodes on Youtube. But what did I encounter before that? An unclothed very elderly couple seen from the shoulders up in a deep and uh, loving embrace. It was awkward to see and then it got even more awkward when I read the headline that accompanied the photo: ‘Study reveals the elderly are having more sex than thought.’

Uh, um, oh boy…I’m speechless. The last time I was this speechless I was under general anesthesia. Explain to me why this was so important for me know. How was this study conducted? More importantly, WHY was this study conducted? You know what, I just can’t continue with this. Can we just come to an agreement and declare that whatever happens in these ‘experienced’ couples’ Craftmatic Adjustable old people’s beds stays in their Craftmatic Adjustable old people’s beds?

Have a great weekend everybody!!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Time To Play…For Pay!!

I am excited to share with you that Thursday is Recess At Work Day. There is a really good chance, like over 100%, that I wrote about this last June, but I am going to resist the temptation to just repost that story. Although, I’d get bonus points for recycling and going green. As you may or may not be aware, I am not overly fond of having to eek out a living by being a cubicle dwelling, tie wearing, corporate crony. I guess that’s like me saying that you may or may not be aware that Britney Spears has some mental issues. I just like to state the obvious without appearing as though I am stating the obvious. For instance, when it is raining and we are all standing in it, I like to say that the chance for precipitation is very high. It’s a true fact and suggests the obvious without overtly stating it. I’ve got another one: I have the tendencies of an idiot. It’s like stating I’m an idiot without saying I’m an idiot. Now, I have drifted off course, which is odd given that fact that I planned on writing about playtime at work.

So back to the playtime thing. Isn’t recess at work a great idea? I most certainly should be done more than once a year, that’s for sure. Oh crap, I just stated the obvious in an obvious way, but we are talking about recess at work. I for one miss recess. Yes, it was my favorite time at school. I’m still not sure why it’s done away with by the time kids get to Junior High and High School. I’m not saying we needed swings on my high school campus or a sandbox (which would just have become a public litter box for all the strays in the neighborhood. I’m talking about cats, not people), but some break time longer than lunch or going from one class to the next would have been nice. I’m pretty sure if you go back to the original notes and drafts of the Declaration of Independence you will find a crossed out reference to recess being a fundamental and unalienable right. In fact, maybe if the Founding Fathers had kept that phrase in the Declaration, it would not have contained annoyingly big words like unalienable. My point: recess should be a lifelong daily observance, just like naps. Lucy and Ethel find it so hard to believe that a day will come when they will actually WANT to take naps. Recess in America should be like teatime in Britain or a pound of butter in a Paula Deen recipe. It just wouldn’t be the same without it.

At my office, we don’t have a lot of big, wide open ‘safe’ spaces in which to play and we have no grass. But, there is a small area out back where the smokers hang out that could easily accommodate recess. Now I realize that dodgeball or duck, duck goose would be the most obvious things to do during recess, but we are all grown ups and those games wouldn’t fly with a few in our office. For the record, I have no problem with it. After all, my job is stressful and what would relieve that stress more than intentionally getting to throw an over inflated ball directly at a coworker’s face?

I’m thinking our grown up workplace recess will require a hotdog vendor with his own cart and maybe a guy with a fondue cart and one with a snowcone machine. And yes, that is my plan for Lucy or Ethel’s backyard wedding when that time comes. Oh, and recess will require a cappuccino maker for the more ‘fancy’ and ‘mature’ people in my office who look down at us snowcone slurpers with disdain. I don’t mind giving them the cappuccino maker, because they are the ones I’ll be aiming for when we start dodgeball. Although, can THEY sue ME if I hit THEM with a ball while THEY are consuming a hot frothy beverage? I’d ask HR for some direction on this possibly contentious issue, but I fear they’d nix the whole thing as soon as I got to the part where I say ‘ok, imagine everyone out behind the office visiting and playing for 20-30 minutes each morning and afternoon…’

I used to regularly observe my own recess at work. I didn’t want to draw attention to it though so I didn’t call it ‘recess’ (remember that whole stating the obvious thing?). I called it ‘blogging.’ Then I got caught (or ‘sent to the principal’s office’) and had to stop. Now the closest thing I get to recess is when I plug in my Ipod’s headphones and hide under my desk for 30 minutes for so. No, I’m kidding. I only do that during fire and earthquake drills.

I am eagerly looking forward to tomorrow’s Recess At Work Day. I just can’t decide between hiring a bounce house or those big inflatable water slides with attached kiddy pool. It’s going to be hot again, so I’d better go with the water slide. But I swear that if during our recess the guy in the cubicle across from me asks me to deliver a love note to the woman in the cubicle next to me, I am going to charge him standard ground shipping rates if I miss my turn on the slide!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

This Idea Smells Like…(A Repost?)

I wrote this almost a year ago when the 2008 Olympics were a mere gold, silver and bronze twinkle in China's eye awaiting consummation and riots and international concern. But now, all that fun is just over a month away. Oh boy, I just can't wait. It's been so long (that's what she said) since I got to watch and cheer my favorite Olympic sport - CURLING!!! Wait, that's a Winter Olympic sport? Oh dammit.

I came across an AP story this morning about yet another aspect of the 2008 Olympic Games in China. Simply put, an organization in China is preparing to make Olympic souvenirs like little Olympic trophies depicting Pandas taking part in various Olympic Sports. Ok, that’s a cute idea, but the souvenirs will be made out of (wait for it)…PANDA DUNG. Uhhhhhhhhhhhhh, come again? Yep, Panda DUNG! Yesiree, not only would you be lucky enough to attend the Olympic Games in China, but you could take home some lovely molded Panda ‘Passings’ to remember the event. I am actually booking my flight right now! Thanks Expedia!!!!

The story says that the souvenirs would mostly be made out of things like undigested bamboo found in the Panda dung and that it would be sterilized. Apparently Pandas don’t digest bamboo very well (I guess it’s kind of their version of ‘in corn/out corn’). I’m sure there is some eco-friendly benefit from doing this, but what it all comes down to is that you would be buying Panda feces made pretty. I realize that Pandas are cute and rare and endangered, but it doesn’t mean that their dung is too. I realize that's a harsh statement from someone who has never seen Panda dung, but I feel pretty secure in my assumptions this time (and we all remember what assumptions are, right? Brave guesses with a total disregard for any factual basis. But the key word you should remember is 'brave'). Isn’t the white Rhino or some other animal like that endangered as well? Have you seen what comes out of an animal like a Rhino? What’s next play-desserts made out of cow pies? Will there soon be hair care products on the market made of camel spit? Or how about hand lotion made of bird regurgitant? Seriously, I thought regurgitant would be a real word.

This all sounds like a really, uh, crappy idea. How do you put something like that on a resume? Obviously you want to dress up the description of any job you have ever had, but how do you describe this one? Are you a ‘Fecal Matter Recycling Expert?' Do your duties include ‘cleansing of Panda dung for preparation for consumer consumption?’ How about ‘Panda Waste Artist?’ And really, what job does this qualify you for? Do you look at the guys that follow behind horses in parades with buckets and shovels as the internship or training grounds for Panda Waste Artists? Do the Fecal Engineers in training practice honing their skills on Play-Doh or modeling clay or worse yet, pet waste? What does a job like this pay? What are the benefits and are gloves provided at no expense? Is the pay scale related to the relative size of animal’s waste? Is there hazard pay for the really big animals?

You know, I have a fairly large dog. The dog likes to eat and obviously requires cleaning up after. I’m just sayin’…

Let it be known that I would be more than willing to sell Mabel’s byproducts to a company wanting to make little sculptures of the characters on the Office or little NASCAR replicas. I mean, if it’s such a good idea and all why not cash in while the money's good?. Talk about unlimited supply potential here. I mean have you ever been to a zoo?? Or a dairy? Or an aviary? Heck, we need to figure out how to make energy or fuel outta this stuff!

Since I’m now to the point where I can really do nothing other than make crappy bad jokes, I should stop before I really stink up the joint. Besides, I need to start working on a new cologne using the essence of skunk…

Monday, June 16, 2008

Names Can Be Hurtful

Have you ever done something so stupid that your friends, family or coworkers (yes, or all 3 in my case) have renamed the mistake you made after you. Such as saying ‘she pulled a Michael?’ That’s what she said. Seriously, you know what I am talking about, right? If you see a skanky, skinny (also known as Skinky, perhaps) girl walking down the street, you might be inclined to say the young lass was pulling a Paris or a Lindsey. Yelling obscenities at your daughter? Yep, that’s ‘a Baldwin.’ Sex in the White House? ‘Pulling a Kennedy.’ Gheesh, that sounds dirty. You probably thought I was going to say Clinton, didn’t you? Nah, that’s too easy, but if it makes you feel better, I can offer you this. Ever done inappropriate things with cigars in the Oval Office while leading your country? Yep, that’s ‘a Clinton.’ Uh, a ‘Bill,’ to be exact.

Ok, I think I’ve given enough examples. Well, as if the planet ex planet Pluto hasn’t been beaten up enough, it has now joined the league of having something ignominious (lordy do I hope I used that correctly, it made me sit up just a little taller as I was writing it) and unfortunate named after it. Yep, from now on, whenever a planetary body thingy is too small, or ugly, or has too many craters or a bad attitude or comes from poor lineage or does something embarrassing in class, it will be called a Plutoid. I guess it’s the same logic as naming a little or mini hemorrhage a hemorrhoid? Ouch. That’s just disrespectful.

Essentially, if it isn’t important enough or good enough to qualify as a planet, it will be named after Pluto. Perhaps the scientists who decided to do this thought they were honoring Pluto by naming every wannabe planet after it, but if you were to ask Pluto, I bet you’d get a different answer. And just for the record, if you actually did ask Pluto a question and then received a response back on top of that, you would legally qualify as someone in need of mental help or be labeled just plain ‘goofy’ (I am now one character mention away from Disney coming after me, by the way). In fact, I strongly suggest against telling anyone that any of the planets in our solar system spoke to you or that you spoke to them. I imagine if you made that mistake you’d get the same looks I get when I am caught humming ‘The Hustle’ while waiting for something to come out of our networked printer in the office.

I don’t know if any new Plutoids have been named since this decision was made but something tells me that as time goes on, the practice of naming inferior celestial bodies after Pluto will not just stop and fade away as often happens with our pop culture references. That’s the one hope that gets me through each day - the thought that having my name attached to doing something boneheaded will eventually stop and be forgotten. Well, that thought and the one that involves me going to the Tillamook Dairy in just over 2 weeks. Although after visiting the dairy, the hope that people will stop naming the act of doing boneheaded things after me will once again become the one thought that gets me through each day. Unless you are counting the promise of lunch and dinner because knowing that those two meals await me does help me get out of bed every morning. But that really has nothing to do with Pluto or Plutoids or the cosmic soap opera that has become poor Pluto’s plight, which by the way is the name of Oprah’s next book club selection.

Because of all this reclassifying planet mumbo jumbo, I now live under the fear that it will tear our family apart. As Lucy and Ethel prepare for the first grade, I know that one day they will be asked to appear in a class production of ‘The Planets’ or ‘Our Solar System’ or something like that. And it will just be our luck that one of the twins will get to be a real planet like Jupiter or Mars (but oh please God, not Uranus) and one of them will have to play the Plutoid Pluto. That will lead to the usual sisterly ‘why does she get to be a real planet and I have to be this tiny one that no one likes? I always have to be the inferior gaseous body without gravity!’ We deal with arguments like that daily and they are no fun. Well, ok, some of them do tend to get so silly that we can’t help laughing. But to our credit, we never let the twins see us laughing about which one gets to wear the redder belt or the khaki shorts that most closely resemble the khaki shorts I am wearing at the time.

And speaking of reclassifying planets, why is it so necessary? If you ask me, and I am painfully aware that you did not, I think astronomers started reclassifying planets because they ran out of things to do and need to appear that they are still busy and need to work. Why do I think this? Well let’s just say I have, uh, ‘reclassified’ the contents of my cubicle’s filing cabinet 5 times in the last two weeks. Although I think people are starting to catch on, I’m sticking with the ‘I’m trying to find a document I swear I just filed away in here last week.’ The use of the word ‘document’ makes it sound official and all businessy, so it usually gets me off the hook.

I feel for Pluto, but since I can’t do anything about it, I guess I should go join all the cool kids and watch Pluto through my telescope and point and laugh at it. Wait a minute, cool kids don’t have telescopes. Wait another minute, I have a telescope. Oh blurg…

Sunday, June 15, 2008

In Search Of The Perfect Post

I will be right up front with you on this one. It's Father's Day AND Dale Jr. finally won a race after two freakin' years! Yes, that means I am too busy to come up with something new for today. Do I feel bad about that? Uh, sure.

For whatever reason, I rarely strive to undertake something to the best of my ability. I realize I should but it helps me manage people’s expectations. The lower I keep them, the less will hopefully be asked of me. I have made the mistake in the past of setting very high expectations, which only proves to be a pain to live up to. However, when it comes to this blogging stuff, I find myself striving for perfection at least three days a week. It may not seem like much, but that is easily three times more than the effort I put into work or rational thinking.

Daily, it seems that I read posts that are excellent and inspire me to want to create the ultimate post - one that should be marked as a classic in the dictionary or encyclopedia. Well, ok, I’d settle for an entry in Wikipedia. I came across a few of them again while surfing blogs this morning and it really got me thinking about what would make the perfect post, the post that when I realized it could not be topped would send me into blogging retirement, and maybe a book deal. Though I’d settle for getting a pamphlet published.

Of course by describing it to you, it kind of takes away the need to actually try to write the perfect post since I’ll essentially be doing that here, but maybe that’s just my way of talking about doing the work instead of actually doing it. While the perfect post means different things to different writers, for me and my personal standards, it would have to be witty, laugh out loud funny and at the same time make the reader think long after reading it, though not in a college philosophy class type of way. The penultimate post also needs to force readers to contemplate such deep thoughts as their own mortality, their particular brand of spirituality, how we coexist as a global people and why the Dave Clark 5 could be the most under appreciated band of the entire British Invasion. OK, you got me. I ran out of ideas by the time I wrote that last item. Perfection is hard. And though it doesn't make any sense here, I still feel like that last sentence deserves a 'that's what she said.'

As difficult as it would be to accomplish, I'd want my ‘classic’ post to also leave people in awe of my brilliant intelligence, or my ‘brilligence,’ if you will. I'm not saying that I'm brilligent, but I'd want my perfect post to leave that impression upon the reader (obviously I'm hoping for gullible readers). Oh yeah, getting people to cry would be cool too. So would having people quote it for years after or see it put into an email and forwarded, oh I don't know, dozens of times. And having it stolen for use as an advertising slogan. And having the post spark an entire new movement, but that’s it. OK, and it could lead to my own TV comedy development deal or daily humor column or multiple book deal. Or if I really dare to dream, the post would make someone want to do my lawns for free. Really though, if I had to choose just one effect if I ever am lucky enough to compose the perfect post, I’d just settle for the crying part. Or the quoting part. Although the TV thing would be pretty neat. Or perhaps it would make people want to mail me exotic cheeses, though they would have to be shipped in frozen containers because I got sick from a spoiled dairy product once and well, yeah, I'm don't want to talk about it now.

Now for the actual nitty gritty elements of my perfect post. I realize that by getting into these items that I am possibly providing you with what I think are the elements and blue print to compose the perfect post, thereby making it possible for my perfect post to be stolen. However, I am trusting, or na├»ve or maybe just not that smart, so I don’t mind providing these secret ingredients for the perfect post. After all, the perfection lies in how the elements are presented, which by the way I will also provide for a nominal fee. Or exotic cheeses, assuming you packaged and shipped them correctly.

All right, now here is what I think the perfect post should contain. Oh, you know what; I’ve already exceeded my 500+ words for the day. Now I won’t be able to share what I think is needed for the perfect post. I guess I spent too much time talking about it instead of just getting it done. Whoa, that sounds like my last employee review. Hopefully I didn’t get anyone too excited. Again, it just seems like that last sentence needs a 'that's what she said.' Sorry about stringing you along. Well, as long as I’m around to see the sunrise and my computer boots up, there’s always tomorrow. Hey, that’s pretty good. I need to remember that.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Whoa There, Don’t Blame Me

For one day, one brief shining moment, I can honestly say ‘it’s not my fault,’ especially at work. Well HONESTLY saying that might be a stretch, but in light of the fact that Friday the 13th (uh-oh) is ‘Blame Someone Else Day,’ I can now tell you whose fault it really is. Or whose it might be. Or I’ll just tell you whose fault I am deciding it was based on who I feel like blaming. (Wow, after those last two sentences, I feel like The Grinch taking about the whose and who’s so much. The noise, noise, noise. Sorry) Folks, you gotta like the sound of blaming someone else. Much like Ronald Reagan, we’ll all get to be Teflon coated for the day. This could be my chance to really stand out in the office.

I figure (which is a good hint that I’m probably wrong right off the bat) that there are two kinds of people in the world. Those who man-up and take the blame and those who shirk responsibility and blame someone else. I absolutely do not like blaming someone else for something I have or have not done, but true to my PR roots, I tend to shift blame focus somewhere else so that whatever involves me can be completely forgotten. Let’s say on some odd, once in a lifetime occurence, when Jupiter collides with Mars (oh no, I just quoted the song ‘Aquarius,’ I think that officially means I become a social outcast in the next 5 minutes. I’m melting…) that I miss a work deadline. When confronted with that, I might say something to the effect of ‘did you ever hear back on that initiative I asked you about a few months back’ to shift the focus to something else. Or perhaps I might respond with ‘wow has my computer been acting up lately. I spent so much time booting and rebooting my PC that I got behind on my project.’ See, I’m not blaming anyone there, I am offering up an excuse. Yes, I know that excuse can be construed as lying, but I assure you that the ‘lying’ as you refer to it, is purely an unintended consequence. Again, please notice that I am not actually blaming anyone, so I am hoping for brownie points there. Although I’d prefer coconut macaroon points or maybe Girl Scout Samoan cookie points. Those taste so good they’re like bonus points!

The beauty of it all is that on Friday, for the first time ever, I can blame someone else, like the butler. Yes, on Friday, I will actually be able to tell someone that the butler did it while not being engaged in a board game. For fun, I might even throw in where and how the butler did it. In fact, I’m pretty sure the reason that I missed turning in my expense report last week was because the butler did it with the plumbing wrench in the study during Anderson Cooper’s 360 on CNN. Oh wait, was that too specific? You have to understand that I don’t have a lot of practice in the art of blaming. Man, it sure is fun though. I could really get used to ‘blaming.’

For instance, the reason I forgot to call my grandmother on her birthday was that my friend called me at the same time I was looking up my grandmother’s new phone number in our address book. My friend kept wanting to run the schematics of his new water-fueled car engine by me. It seems he was having trouble storing the energy while the car was idling, hence losing power. And since he knows I am an expert in the field of water power, he desperately wanted my input. So as you can see, it was all my friend’s fault that I forgot to call my grandmother. And yes, the fact that I am in no way a scientific expert on anything or that I have no friend who could invent such an engine is completely irrelevant. What is relevant is that I just blamed someone else, which is completely acceptable on Friday and that the reason I provided definitely trumps the real reason I forgot to call her on her birthday. (Note to self: put my grandmother’s birthday on the calendar next year).

And speaking of calendars, all the programs I have been watching about global warming lately really are starting to get me concerned. Sorry, I know that has nothing to do with calendars, but it’s been a while since I did a segue and I’m a little rusty. I think before we can really solve global warming, we need to identify the biggest culprits. Yep, that means BLAMING someone. But to who to blame? Well, I chose to blame my neighbor. He mows his front and back lawns with his gas powered mower EVERY SINGLE WEEKEND. Seriously man, what’s the deal? He mows his yards every weekend and then that means I have to get up and mow my yards every weekend which means that I have to miss some really great sports event on TV like bowling or curling I am running my gas powered mower, which leaves a really big carbon footprint (did I impress you there with the ‘carbon footprint’ use? I saw it on some TV show a few weeks ago). We’re talking a huge carbon footprint here. A carbon footprint big enough to make Sasquatch’s prints look like Cabbage Patch baby feet. Not that I know anything about Cabbage Patch Kids though. And if for some reason I did, it’s because Lucy and Ethel each have a couple. Look at that, I just blamed them and didn’t even realize it. Blame Someone Else Day really is working out quite well.

There is so much more I have to say about blaming others and Blame Someone Else Day, but it’s my Dad’s birthday and I need to get back to the celebration we are having in his honor. Well, at least that’s what my mom tried to get across to me when she just said ‘we came all this way to your house for your father’s birthday and you are sitting at the computer.’ Oh no, I actually just blamed my mother for something. I guess therapy is next for me. I blame…well, I’d better stop while I’m ahead.

And by the way, Happy Father’s Day to all you fathers out there! And all you muthas mothers out there, because when you think about it, you kinda had a lot to do with it too. I’m looking forward to a relaxing day and watching the race with Lucy and Ethel, at least until about lap 10 – they still have pretty short attention spans.

***I have to share with you a new website that I found: It's a website that lets you make your own motivational posters like the one I created for this post. Since discovering it, productivity in my life has fallen to a minus 175%. Unless of course you count productivity solely on the amount of motivational posters made. In that case, I'm up 475%.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

This Much Fun Should Be Illegal

Before I continue with this post, it should be noted that I was highly gassed for much of yesterday, which may or may not explain this next statement. And here goes: the hospital is so much fun, I would pay to go there, just like Disneyland. Oh wait, I do pay to go there. Through the teeth I pay, but I guess that’s just like Disneyland too. There are actually a lot of similarities.

The hospital has a little of everything. Rides (wheel chairs and beds), food (or a reasonable facsimile thereof) and lots of waiting. Imagine getting to the hospital at 5am only to be told the admitting office doesn’t open until 5:30am and that you won’t even be prepped for your procedure until 7:30am. Yep, if you are thinking that’s just ‘like a ride queue at Disneyland, you would be right sir. My favorite ride yesterday was Nurse Who I Couldn’t Understand’s Wild Bed Push.’ Not to throw around NASCAR terms, but I think my bed was a little on the tight side because it kept pushing coming out of the turns. This led to not one, not two, but three collisions with other patients’ beds. Fortunately two of the three were so heavily sedated they slept right through it, but I feel for the one we hit that wasn’t. It is not a pretty sight to see a post-op elderly woman jolted awake by her bed being hit. At least she was in the right place should cardiac resuscitation have been necessary. It probably didn’t help that I was laughing as we rolled through the halls. Though in my defense I was sedated and loopy too.

I probably don’t need to say this, but after the infamous emergency room nipple-shaving incident of December 2004, I’m a little leery when nurses approach me with sharp objects. I guess you could say I get a little ‘edgy’ about it? (The fun may be gone, but the pun is here to stay). Yesterday was no different. The nurse told me she was going to shave me and then her BIC razor wannabe started buzzing. This made me even more tense. I thought I was remaining cool and calm as the she prepared to shave me, but I forgot that I was hooked up to monitors that reveal everything going on with me short of hiccupping, so everyone knew I was having major razor-induced anxiety. I had visions going through my head of my skin getting snagged and chewed up by this nurse’s automatic razor, but fortunately my nipples remain unscathed. And I can now cross that phrase off the lists of things I never thought I’d get to say…

The worst part about the shave thing is that just like any thorough, caring and dedicated professional, the hospital only does what it needs to. This means that since my cardioversion patch had to be placed on the left side of my chest, that’s the only side they shaved. Now, one side of my chest looks like a European Olympic swimmer’s (or a 4-year-old’s) chest, which comparatively makes my untouched right side look like Sean Connery’s or Austin Power’s’ss’s’s’. (I guess that last part would translate better in a podcast as opposed to writing. Just picture me saying Powers’s’s’s’s’s in a Dr. Evil voice with the whole dainty teacup-holding pinky finger next to my mouth). And it gets better. Since I had to be shocked 3 times (that third one REALLY IS a charm), my skin is burned from the adhesive medical sticky and electricity transmitting pads placed on my chest and back. So, now not only is half of my chest freshly shaven, but I have a large egg-shaped burn line that makes it appear as though the world’s largest big-mouth bass gave me a hickey. Oh boy, now I get to cross that phrase off of my things I never thought I’d get to say list. Wow, two in one day. I’d better slow down. I’m supposed to take it easy for a few days.

Sadly, my cardiologist, who I adore, has given me a new nickname: The Horse. Let’s just say that I have never reacted well to anesthesia and this time was no different. For whatever reason, from the moment I went under, through the shocky shocky and until I woke up, I was lifting and then slamming my left foot down on my bed. I was informed that right after the procedure my doctor asked if I was having a seizure. Hey, procedure and seizure! That rhymes in a lovely Suessian way. But it makes me wonder if everyone just left me laying in the corner as the freak who likes to bang his legs in his sleep and whenever another hospital employee asks about it, the nurses just replied with ‘just ignore him, he’s been doing that for 20 minutes.’ Perhaps that’s why everyone was staring at me when I finally woke up, which I have to admit was a pretty freaky moment. The recovery ward I was placed in was full of old folks who had just had cataract surgeries, so all I saw was at bunch of people with one eye looking in my direction. When you wake up and are pretty groggy, that’s not a welcoming sight. It was like I was in the twilight zone and I was the freak because I was the only one with two eyes.

So, I can now add counting with my foot like a horse to the list of my reactions to anesthesia, which already includes asking out doctors and nurses, offering to buy a meat dinner for my doctor even though the meat is considered sacred to that doctor, singing disco tunes and offering to buy a round of drinks for everyone in the room. I have never been drunk, but can’t help thinking that I’d make a fun one. Kinda like Otis on The Andy Griffith Show. I also bit my toungue during the lurch after being shocked, so I now speak with a lisp. It’s a pretty good chunk off the side of my tongue. As long as I don’t eat salt, I shouldn’t hurt too much more than it already does. The tongue must be really important, not like the appendix or metatarsal bone (I’ll admit I have no idea where that bone is, but saying it instantly makes you appear smarter. Seriously, try it) because it sure is hard to talk with a little piece of it missing.

But in the end, I really can’t complain. My heart rhythm is back to the normal and boring beat, beat, beat which means that although it’s no longer playing The Hustle, it’s working correctly. And as if it couldn’t get any better and I couldn’t ask for more from life, I got a call from Lucy and Ethel last night who are vacation along the Central California coast with my parents. I guess they found a farm nearby that they have been visiting every day because (and make sure you are sitting down when you read this) Lucy and Ethel can feed the COWS there. Yep, my daughters, the lights of my life, are directly contributing to the process of making cheese. In fact, they are assisting with the first phase in the long series of phases necessary to making cheese. And yes, it made me cry, but just a little. It’s cheesy, I know.

That’s really all I can remember from my Hospital Land adventure so I’ll wrap this post up. Though from what I am hearing, there apparently is a pretty good chance that I may have signed my house over to the anesthesiologist because I was so pleased with his efforts. Let’s just hope I didn’t sign anything to make it official. I promise I’ll be back to the regular blogging subject faire tomorrow, assuming of course I have a home and computer from which to write it…

Monday, June 09, 2008

600’s A Charm??

So here I sit, knowing that I am writing my 600th blog post, which I will tell you upfront is not exactly accurate because of my fondness for being lazy reposts. But, I have pushed Blogger’s little ‘publish’ button 600 times, so I have no problem taking the credit. After all, assuming I have used my same index finger to push the mouse button to hit ‘publish’ all previous 599 times, I have expended a decent enough amount of energy. My first instinct is to look back fondly on many of my past post topics much the same way Mike Rowe does on Dirty Jobs after about every 25 episodes. I assume this is because of a lack of material on their part. Well, perhaps I am just pushing what I do onto Mr. Rowe. I think that is called ‘transference,’ but I’m really not sure. It could also be called passing the buck or making something up to complete a paragraph.

Whew, one paragraph down on my 600th post. If this pace keeps up, I will have completed the most boring and self-centered post ever written in no time! I wanted this one to be memorable, but since there are no really good faux holidays (Hi, Kat!!) until the end of the week I am on my own to come up with decent material, like denim. That’s a decent material. So is khaki, plus that one is fun to say and makes me think of tropical expeditions with pith hats and crocodiles. Oh wait, that’s the Jungle Cruise. Still, as far as material goes, khaki is where it’s at for me. Did I just type ‘where it’s at?’ Was I subject to reruns of ‘Laugh In’ while I slept this weekend? Sock it to me, that was bad. Uh-oh, did it again. At this point we can officially conclude that you should not blog while suffering a deficiency of oxygen. Translated – irregular heartbeats = irregular thought processes. Though that will be solved Tuesday morning, but more about that fun later!

I’ve read a few news stories lately that caught my attention. The first was the minor league baseball team in the Midwest that gave away a funeral during one of its games. That has to be one of the greatest giveaways ever. Though it didn’t happen, how great would it have been if little 7 year-old Timmy in section 5C Row 117 Seat 3 won the ‘prize package?’ As the cost of funerals and burials and other ‘now that you are dead’ costs rise over the next several decades, think what a cool customer Timmy would be knowing that his burials plans have been secured. Unless the mortuary company goes out of business, leaving him with completely useless burial plans as if you were the holder of frequent flier miles from some low-scale economy airline named something like U-Fly U-Sav or Econo-Air, or possibly Delta, that had to declare bankruptcy. I can just see Timmy right now in his 80s on his knees in a parking lot where his gravesite would have been doing his best ‘Stella’ or ‘Why?’ It’s very sad…

Then their was the story I mentioned in a recent podcast where a homeless woman in Japan was caught living in some guy’s closest…for a year. Seriously, if she got away with that for a year, I’m pretty sure that takes away her ‘homeless’ status. Though there are probably no official rules or handbook to refer to, you’d have to think that one year in the same closet is enough to qualify as having a home, don’t you. I mean it’s not as if I can say I’m unemployed while working in the same office for a year. Though I wonder if I could not come in for one year and say I AM employed. Hmmm, vacation time and my mom would think I’m a contributing member of society. I shall have to ponder this.

What finally got this squatter (why do I dislike the word squat so much, by the way) caught was that the owner noticed that food was missing. Yeah, it took him a year to figure this out. Do they have super big rats in Japan that a homeowner could assume was removing food from his domicile? ‘Honey, where’s the ham we bought last week?’ ‘Oh, I’m sure the rats got to it.’ I think that is officially the downward turn of mankind when an excuse like that is acceptable. Unless the downward turn is when we care about the goings on of people like Paris and Britney, or that we know people like Paris or Britney by their first names only, or the fact that people make good money photographing people like Paris or Britney coming out of a grocery store. Oh holy crap, our downward spiral has begun. Quick, to the Y2K bunker!!! Don’t laugh, now you are wishing you had built one…

Did the homeowner not catch on when he kept turning on his DVR only to see that 15 soap operas and Oprah had been recorded? I don’t know about you, but when mysterious programs start popping up on the TiVo, I begin to get suspicious. What about when those programs started disappearing from his TiVo. I don’t know about you, but when mysterious programs disappear from my TiVO, I begin to get suspicious. Yes, you are right, if only I would put as much attention towards my job as I do my TiVo. But, I ask you, does your job allow up to rewind, pause and playback in slow-mo things as they are happening in real time? Yeah, I thought not!!

There are other topics I could throw at you for this 600th post, like the fact that I can’t keep putting off removing all my Saturday Night Fever and Bee Gees songs from my Ipod. I say this because I do keep my Ipod playing loudly at work and do sometimes walk away from my desk only to hear ‘More Than A Woman’ blaring as I return to cubicle hell from doing something important like buying a Diet Dr. Pepper or a candy bar or going down the street to buy ice cream or running to the office’s shared printer after realizing I printed something that was not work related. Why I ask you does disco have such a stigma? There is nothing wrong with being a Disco Discerson! After all, you cannot do the hustle to Motley Crue. I tried, granted it was way back in the 7th grade, but I seriously doubt the laws of gravity, motion and musical pulsating have changed all that much since then. The fact that I was fully versed in disco by age 13 is a whole other problem to be tackled later while you are all drunk and cannot remember what you have read.

Well, I guess I have sufficiently written enough to qualify as a post because if I have learned only one thing over the last 599 posts (and believe me, the likelihood is quite strong that I indeed have only learned one thing), it’s that quantity always trumps quality. So, I will hit the publish button for the 600th time and start towards the next 100, although good ideas are getting hard to come by. Which reminds me, how do you feel about reading my opinion on the increase of gas prices as it has affected the purchases of minivans as it relates to the drop in demand for sippy cups that really are leak proof? Or how the coming of summer directly affects the global warming of the second story of my home? You know, I realized I am about to wrap up my 600th post and have yet to mention cheese or slip in a TWSS. That reminds me, I was telling someone at work about the quesadilla I made with 4 different kinds of cheese and topped with Chiptole Tabasco over the weekend. She responded that she’d like to get her hands on that. I responded with a firm and confident ‘that’s what she said.’ There, that takes care of that. And now, index finger, meet the publish button…

**This may be my last post for a few days, but it’s not because I’m resting on my 600 laurels. It’s because I get to show up at the hospital at 5am Tuesday morning (only about 4 ½ hours before I normally stumble into the office) to have a cardioversion (also known as the shocky shocky or ‘the paddles,’ if you ever watched ‘Emergency’ growing up). I’ll be released Tuesday afternoon if all goes well and then will be able to recharge 9-volt batteries just by licking them. Ok, I made that up, but THIS shocking will mark my 10th cardioversion, granting me access to the elusive Double Digit Club (which I made up, but it’s the only club I’ve ever belonged to, except for the BBQ Club we tried to start in high school, but it wasn’t officially recognized).

It might actually be my 11th cardioversion, but major league baseball has put an asterisk next to the first one I had because it didn’t work. Now I know how Roger Maris felt. See ya later in the week and thanks for reading my daily mental purges! I promise they’ll get better once I have a sufficient amount of blood being pumped throughout my body again. Heck, maybe my left foot will once again work properly, although I guess that has nothing to do with writing…

Sunday, June 08, 2008

A Slow Pitch Right Down The Middle

I should go ahead and tell you that this is a repost. I know it's a horrible thing to do for a Sunday or Monday (depending on when you read this), but to make up for it, I can offer you a new new podcast to listen to. Besides, I have to think of something memorable to do for my next post on Monday night, which will be my 600th.

Feel free to offer suggestions because after 599 posts, I am running out of things to write about. As proof of that, I offer the fact that I almost posted my confession of love for home water filtration today instead of this repost. Fortunately I realized ahead of time that it would have been a 'Pur' mistake to do so. Hmmm, have I written about cheese lately? That always goes over well....

When you get your inspiration from making fun of odd news stories, it doesn’t get any easier than this: A woman with the last name of Butts was accused of stealing toilet paper from an Iowa Courthouse. Ok, it could have been just a little better; her last name could have been something like Wipey. Yeah, I would pay someone with the last name of Wipey to steal toilet paper. Hey, what about Hiney? Hiney would be good too.

What I can’t figure out is why someone with such a ‘touchy’ or ‘sensitive’ last name as Butts would ever try to steal toilet paper, let alone steal it from a hall of justice, how cheeky. Sorry. Couldn’t she think of better booty to loot? Now she’ll be the butt of many jokes, although she probably already is. I can think of a few of my own to well, crack. Of course, I would never make them directly to someone with the last name of Butts because I wouldn’t want to look like an ass. I guess in hindsight, I already do.

Where was I? Oh yeah, the stealing thing. It has to be on par with stealing a candy bar from a police station vending machine. I wanted to say stealing donuts from a donut shop, but that’s too obvious so I decided to glaze right over it and just sprinkle it in there. I don’t like to leave holes in my stories. Maybe the Butts family could open a cigarette shop or sell a certain prosthesis? But…which body part? How about chins? My favorite is the cleft chin, like the one I possess. Some folks refer to that as a butt-chin, although that should probably be a different tale.

I guess I have come to the end. I really have no other point to make. I’ve already come up with every angle of this story that I could. Unfortunately, I can be anal that way. So, I’ll wrap it up now. In hindsight, this could be my shortest post ever but it will allow me more time to cook dinner tonight. For some reason, I'm thinking of either rump roast or, yes you guessed it, pork butt, which isn’t what you’d think it is. I think it comes from the shoulder. Although in some animals, the definition of shoulder can be very broad…You know what, I’ll stop while I’m ahead. Or am I behind?

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Friday Randomocity II: Electric Boogaloo

I have to thank Eva for the Randomocity title. I had kind of run out of things to call Randomocity Fridays other than more, even more and yet again more Randomocity. I think the Electric Boogaloo version works quite nicely, with the little exception of the fact that I dance about as well as a brick wall suffering a seizure. So, I present to you this week’s More Friday Randomocity, in electric boogalooing style…

* When a coworker is showing you the map of where she plans on vacationing over Memorial Day weekend and the address is on Starvation Flats Road, do you bring up the fact that NOTHING GOOD could possibly be located on a street called Starvation Flats Road? I’m sure there is plenty of parking there though.

* Can you cherry pick a nut or is that mixing metaphors? It obviously sounds crude, so I will explain. I was accused of fishing through the can of mixed nuts that was put in the communal place where we share food in the office. My coworker called it cherry picking, but my defense (and my only defense mind you) was that you can’t cherry pick a nut. Hence, my question…

* It has now become more fun for me to catch someone accidentally saying ‘that’s what she said’ than just saying it in the middle of a conversation. I shall give you an example:

Coworker: ‘Michael, the HR lady told me she can’t believe we hired someone like you.’
Me: ‘Really, she said that? That doesn’t seem professional at all.’
Coworker: ‘Yes really, I swear that’s what she said.’
Me: ‘Ha, you said that’s what she said’
Coworker: ‘you’re an idiot.’

* I am a horrible person. I have noticed this tendency of mine at work that bothers me. Well ok, my boss noticed it and pointed it out to me. That’s never a good thing by the way. Whenever I get a message from someone on my work line and they make a point of saying something like ‘this is the second message I have left,’ I feel the incredible urge not to call them back so that they can continue counting how many messages they have to leave me. I swear I’m not normally that mean, at all. I’m not sure why it sets me off. But, I am hoping that it can be used as medical proof that I am not suited for office work.

* I just discovered that Ms. I Want To Go To Mime School has never seen the animated ‘Grinch Who Stole Christmas.’ I told her I would bring in the video tape of it so she can finally see it and she informed me she has no VCR. Why am I not surprised? She also did not know who Steve Carrell is. I’m asking her about Mickey Mouse next.

* Ok, I asked her about Mickey Mouse (this was all time elapsed, by the way) and she got offended and asked if I thought she was an idiot. If only I had realized at the time that it was a rhetorical question. Wups…

And now for something completely different…

Those are all the randoms I have had this week. I think the lack of oxygen to my brain because of the ineffective pumping of the upper chambers of my heart is finally beginning to affect me. Holy hell, that sounded somewhat intelligent!!!

Anywho (to use a word that will completely end the intelligent credibility thing), I have a viewing recommendation for you. I rarely do this, but watched something last night that I have to share, especially given the fact that many of the current readers of this blog are very close to my age. For me, MTV stopped be relevant about 1992 (if not earlier) and it went that long only because of the cinematic pleasure that was Chris Isaack’s ‘Wicked Game’ video. You all know what I’m talking about…

Besides, we are all too busy these days with our full time demanding jobs or families or both to get to enjoy TV other than CNN, Discovery, The Disney Channel or The Food Network (which of course IS the Disney Channel for us grown up foodies) or the Green Channel (which by the way I am disappointed in. When I had heard about a green channel, all I could think of was how bold it was to create a channel in just one color. But then I turned it on and it was in the full spectrum of color. I did learn way too ‘mulch’ about composting though…).

So, it was with a mixture of disappointment and shame that I sat down to watch part of the MTV Movie Awards last night. And honestly, I am glad that I did. There was a 30-minute segment I watched that made me say ‘if I died right now, I could say that I just got to watch the perfect show to make it the last I would ever watch.’ I shall attempt to detail it for you in the hopes that you will want to try to catch a rerun of it, which I am sure MTV will be showing throughout the weekend.

The first part was a reunion of Wayne Campbell and Garth Algar from Wayne’s World presenting the Top Ten Dirty Names for popular films of this last year. For those of us from the great early to mid 90s SNL era, this was like Nirvana, who is actually from the same era. Dang, now I smell like Teen Spirit! They were perfect in all their Wayne’s Worldliness.

Immediately after that was what usually becomes an awkward, poorly written ‘banter’ between presenters. But not this time! It was the cast of the new Get Smart movie: The Rock, Steve Carrell (one of my heroes) and the beautiful Anne Hathaway. In the middle of their banter, Steve Carell said something prompting someone in the audience to yell ‘that’s what she said’ and it was clear the 3 presenters saw the brilliance of the moment. It was priceless!

And if it all can’t get any better, on comes Tom Cruise (sans couch, thankyouverymuch) with the career achievement award for Adam Sandler. While I am nowhere near being a Tom Cruise fan since oh, Top Gun, this was worth watching. I should mention that I feel he can take all those records off the shelf and listen to them by himself, for all I care. However, he kinda redeemed himself when he honored Adam Sandler by referencing SNL and his great movies. It was hysterical. Then, Adam Sandler comes on and sings my favorite James Bond song (and one I just mentioned last week on this blog as my ‘getting ready’ song) ‘Nobody Does It Better’ by Carly Simon. But he sang it about himself complete with gold bikini dancers and an appearance by Rob Schneider of ‘you can do it’ fame. I was literally bouncing up and down in my recliner yelling ‘oh goody, oh goody’ in between bouts of uncontrollable laughter.

It was a wonderful television watching experience and it actually occurred while watching MTV of all channels. Not Dirty Jobs, not Deadliest Catch, Not Bizarre Foods or Alton Brown or Brady Bunch reruns, but freakin’ MTV. So, if you are anywhere near my age and want a little good-time flashback, treat yourself to part of the MTV Movie Awards this weekend. You can even email me later and thank me, if you can stop laughing long enough…

Have a great weekend everybody!!!!!!

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Your Mission, Should You Choose To Accept It, Is…

Imagine getting home from a long day of work all set to celebrate Cheese Day Eve and you are directed to a little postcard sized piece of mail. You are probably asking why don’t I just imagine that instead of asking you to do so. Well, I don’t have to because it happened to me. As this piece of mail had no identifying marks, a lot of things raced across my mind. Namely, I had finally been fired. I got ready to dismiss it as junk mail and then was directed to look at the other side.

And there it was: an invitation to call the sender of this bit of postage regarding a position in this individual’s ‘company.’ Because I am a very attentive person (no seriously), I noticed (after staring at the card for 25 minutes – see attentive) two key pieces of information that even our friends at CSI may not have noticed. The front and back were written by two different people (one male and one female) and that the sender used the word ‘company.’ Obviously, we’re talking at least a two-person operation here. After patting myself on the back for noticing these little ‘clues’ and tripping over the vacuum cord, I made my way to the phone and called the number provided.

Again, the recorded greeting I received left me no obvious clues, other than me having reached the ‘desk’ of the mail’s sender. So, I left a message, but because I am still not sure who I’m dealing with, I left my boss’ phone number. I figure if the guy calls back, it’ll up my bargaining status with my job when my boss discovers I am desirable. Wait, that really does need to be rephrased. I mean desirable as in ‘hotly wanted job candidate,’ not any other way. I really do need to stop writing the first thing that comes to my mind. Naw, I’m kidding about all of this. I left my work cell phone number, or as it is commonly referred to by my coworkers, the phone I never answer.

As of the time I sat down to write this I have not heard back from the sender of this possibly phony parcel. I know, shocking. Now that I have all this time to sit and wonder about what this company is that wishes to use my services, I can tell you that my mind is really working overtime (I guess it’s making up for my body, which tries to work as little as possible) dreaming up what business this company may be engaged in. And yes, most of them are spy related so I won’t share those…

My first thought was that maybe this is someone who came to learn about me via my blog. Then my second thought was ‘now who in the hell is going to hire me after reading this blog.’ Yep, you guessed it; I chose to ignore the second thought. I have written about a few things, so maybe this mystery company deals with one of them. Perhaps it’s a new cheese manufacturer with an edge trying to elbow out a little bit of the established market and is hiring only those persons who have a real love for cheese. It would be like the Apple or Mac of the cheese market. Mac and cheese? Honestly, I didn’t see that coming, but you get the point. Maybe they want to make me their advertising guru responsible for making their special brand of cheese seem better than all others. Perhaps they need someone to produce the cheese or even someone to taste it. And if I really choose to dream, maybe they want someone to lead the tours of their facility. I’m giddy with anticipation, I tell ya!

Or, this company wants to financially back my idea for a fast food fondue joint called Fastdue or Speedy Cheddar’s (just Cheddars for da locals). Oh wait; I haven’t shared that idea yet. Maybe their mailing to me was so nondescript because they need to keep their activities on the down low because they are an international export company (although I guess all export companies are international. Hence the ‘ex’port part) that really only IMports to save money. What if they want to use me as a mole? Or a test driver? Those would be fun. I suppose they could want me to join their pyramid scheme of selling vacuums or water filtration devices. Just think, someday I could have someone under me selling vacuums or water filtration devices and all I have to do is collect their money as I sit in front of my brand new swimming pool talking about how I made $40 last month without ever leaving my home…because of the house arrest device around my ankle that I also received while people under me were selling vacuums or water filtration devices.

Then there is the dark side of possibilities. Obviously these people know my mailing address. What if they sent me the card so I would contact them for an interview and then when I leave for the interview someone on their ‘team’ will break into my home (with the same mailing address for those of you keeping score) to steal all my valuable possessions. I am of course speaking about the things that mean the most to me and that I cherish as equally as my family like my TiVo or Wii. Or maybe they want to steal my (and I can’t believe I am even willing to admit this would even happen) PEZ collection or stash of Cheetos that look like the heads of Presidents. Although in all honesty my JFK one is just a Cheeto I took a bite out of. I know, that’s horrible. Write your hate mail…actually don’t. It’ll give me a complex. Oh shoot, they probably would not have known about any of that stuff if I hadn’t just shared it. Well isn’t that just shitacular…

Hmm, after all these recent ponderances, I’m now not sure anything they have to offer me will match up to my expectations. Unless they want to hire me to write nondescript post cards offering people the glimmer of employment. But I don’t have any experience with that. Darn.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

What A Loss

No, I’m not talking about politics or Hillary. That just makes people angry. Before I go any further, I need to warn you that what you are about to read is very sad, it’s beyond sad, it’s ‘Shitacular’ actually. It’s that rare mix of horrible and awe-inspiring rolled up into a big ball of cookie dough that you can’t help but taste even though you know the raw eggs are going to make you sicker than a visit to the nursery at the local preschool. That’s my definition of ‘shitacular,’ by the way. It just popped out of my mouth during a meeting at work and it seemed to be well received. But anyway, this post is going to sadden and possibly depress you, so if you need to read it at a later time like when you are so happy that nothing could bring you crashing back down to earth or after you go grab a box of facial cleaning wipes, or just tissue, please feel free.

What I am about to tell you (more like break softly to you) was covered by some media outlets over the weekend, so you may already know about it. In fact, one of my favorite bloggers even sent me a link to one of the stories. On Friday the James Hook & Co. seafood business in Boston caught fire and burned to the ground, which was actually water because it’s a waterfront business. So, it burned to the water, which is odd considering that water actually beats fire in the old ‘rocks, paper, water, fire game.’ And speaking of fire, there was also one at Universal Studios over the weekend, but you can rest easily because Wysteria Lane was not damaged. Neither were The Beav’s house or The Munster’s place. Yep, they are all on the same street. Goodness, what would June Cleaver think of the goings on in her digs nowadays…

But Wysteria Lane pales in comparison to the fire in Boston. It is always sad when a longtime business has to close its doors for a while, but something else went up in smoke with the James Hook & Co. building. Ok, actually it steamed and then went up in smoke. 60,000 pounds of lobster perished in the fire. If you love lobster like me (I actually read a book 2 summers ago called the ‘Secret Life of Lobsters’ and highly recommend it), go ahead and cry a good hard cry. I’m getting all Saddy Sadderson and my eyes are welling up again as I try to type this. If they were all one pound lobsters, that’s 600 lobsters that were lost. Wait, I don’t think I did my math right again. I really do need to stop using numbers in my posts. It’s not that I feel bad for the lobsters, let’s face it, they were pretty much heading for the scalding hot ending anyway. And this is where I have to say that there had to have been a few minutes while the building’s fire was the best smelling fire in the history of fires. Although I bet the hissing and whining sound of 60,000 pounds of lobster steaming was deafening! Or, that may have just been my cross-continental crying…

I feel bad for the company losing out on the sales of 60,000 pounds of lobster and even more, I feel bad for the people that won’t get to taste the delicious meat that comes from the clawed creature that is related to the bugs we try to eschew (or not chew – guzundheit). I’ve seen that lobstering show on the Discovery Channel and I can tell you that’s it’s no small claw feat to catch 60,000 pounds of lobster. If we lost 60,000 barrels of oil, we’d probably end up paying $13.75 per gallon, so let’s hope that the loss of lobster (also referred to in the business as LOL, even though there is nothing laughable about that. OK, I made that up. I couldn’t resist. It made me LOL. Go figure) doesn’t increase the price of the culinary crustacean to a point where we can’t afford to have it on our tables every night, you know because they are so affordable already. Although, the angels employees at Trader Joes offer up a lobster ravioli at the very reasonable price (this is where I am using my wannabe commercial guy voice) of $2.99 a bag.

It’s all just so sad. What a waste of such a precious commodity. I wonder if this is how ants feel when Lucy and Ethel spill part of their daily afternoon popsicle on the patio and then we spray it off with the hose. Because let me tell you, if that is how ants feel, I am making a pledge right here and now to never spray food bits off the patio again. Well, until I see too many ants on the patio. But don’t fault me, that’s just human nature.

There is a remedy to all the sadness and loss and carnage though. If you remember, and I am hoping that you do, Wednesday is Cheese Day. And let me tell you, nothing dries up tears better than a nice thick slice of cheese. Of course I mean that in the most metaphorical of senses. Kleenex works best for the real thing. It’s pretty absorbent. And they make some that have nice patterns on it. Those are pretty AND absorbent, but then you feel guilty snotting over such a nice design. Hmmm, maybe I’ll blog about Kleenex tomorrow.