Tuesday, February 27, 2007

A Massive Dose of Guilt Can Be Highly Profitable

So, last Friday was my twentieth anniversary at work. Did I get flowers? An office luncheon? A bonus? I got ............ nothing. No acknowledgement whatsoever. Needless to say, I was pissed off. Twenty years, and I get ........ nothing? Granted, I work with all guys, and we all know how clueless guys are when it comes to that stuff, often intentionally (What? Me? Remember an anniversay, a birthday, a (fill in the blank here)? But I'm just a clueless guy! Men don't remember that stuff!)(Men don't remember that stuff because the women in their lives don't ream their asses sufficiently when they forget). And the boss was out sick for most of last week. But ......... nothing?

Long story short, I came into work Monday morning and did some quiet venting to a co-worker who had been out of the office last week. Then I got:
1. Flowers.
2. Apologies.
3. An extra week of paid vacation.
4. The company is going to pay the rent on my apartment for the next six months.

Squeaky wheel, indeed.

Monday, February 26, 2007


I heard "Monday, Monday" by the Mommas & the Poppas on the radio the other day. It got me thinking that you really don't hear any great vocal groups anymore. The Roches and the Burns Sisters do harmony really, really well, but the Roches are pretty much broken up and the Burns Sisters haven't put out anything new lately (as far as I know).

So - anybody know where I can get a harmony fix?

Friday, February 23, 2007


Q: How many Frenchmen does it take to defend Paris?

A: We don't know - they've never tried.

Happy Anniversary to Me!

Twenty years ago today, I started working at my current job. Uplifting? Depressing? You be the judge!

Funny moments: My boss, on his way to the airport and realizing he's not going to make the flight, calling me on his cell phone and telling me to call the airline and ask them to hold the plane.

Ernie coming in with his wig on crooked, and nobody telling him for the entire day because he was an a-hole.

The boss's full length badger fur coat, which the guys on the construction sites just love.

The time the boss's dog chewed a huge hole in the bottom of said coat, so now it's more three-quarter length.

There's lots more, and I'll post them when I get a chance.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007


All the celebrity crash-and-burns lately have got me thinking. If I had made a pile of money at a young age, it seems to me I would've wanted to keep myself very good shape, the better to enjoy the money for as long as possible. I mean, money isn't everything, but it sure helps. So if you had a huge pile of money handed to you, wouldn't it make more sense to keep yourself in shape (exercise, diet, etc.), so you could really enjoy spending all that cash for years to come? I can't imagine looking at a huge bank balance and thinking, "Gee, I can buy a ton of coke with that money", or, "Gee, I think I'll go out and get really, really wasted tonight, and every night". I'd be more like, "Gee, I can buy a small island with that money and lie on the beach for the rest of my life", or, "Gee, I can really make a difference in the world with that much money (after I buy the small island, of course)" (ha!).

I guess I'll never have this particular problem, unless Bill Gates is my long-lost uncle, but it really fries me to see people who have more money than they will ever need turn into total burn-0ut losers. Give me the money! I'll spend it right! I promise!

Monday, February 19, 2007

Digital Cameras

OK, so I'm thinking about getting a digital camera. Actually, I've been thinking about it for months. A local store has a great price ($212.00) on an Olympus SP500 (6.0 mps, 10x optical zoom), but I am concerned because it uses regular batteries, not rechargeable ones. Does anybody know how long batteries last in one of these things? Another local store has a great price ($299.00) on a Kodak EasyShare Z612/printer dock bundle, but I am a little worried because (a) Kodak is very proprietary with their software (EasyShare, sure, as long as you're doing it with a fellow EasyShare-er), and (b) I heard that Kodak cameras are pieces of crap these days.

Any thoughts?

Thursday, February 15, 2007

B.S. stands for Building Supervisor

It took a day and a half and three calls to the Building Supervisor (B.S., ha ha ha!), but around 9 this morning I finally realized that the snowplower who is supposed to plow our driveway was probably not going to show up. I contemplated shoveling out the four foot high mountain of packed snow at the end of the driveway and trying to bull my car out, but I was afraid I'd get stuck halfway down and be in a worse jam than I already was.

Then Jim, who lives downstairs, came up and asked if I wanted him to start shoveling. I explained the situation, and Jim said that since he had the day off, he might as well give it a go. Unfortunately, Jim didn't have a shovel (!), so it was the two of us and just one shovel (mine). I went across the street to Hans' house to ask if I could borrow a shovel, and Hans, bless him, came over with his son and a snowblower to help us out! Between all of us, we got the driveway done in about 45 minutes, and now, thankfully, I'm back at work! Yay! Because I was about to go stir crazy at home. Although I did get a couple of watercolor pictures painted, along with one wall of the kitchen.

So I'd like to give a big shout-out to the B.S.: You don't know it yet, but I have the phone number of the building's owner. And after you hung up on me last night, I left a message on the building owner's answering machine. So you may be getting a call today asking why you are hanging up on tenants, and why the driveway never got plowed. Just so you know.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Hanging Up

I just hung up on a client, and I feel fine!

This guy has been trying to get ahold of my boss, and my boss, for whatever reason, has not been returning his calls. So this guy has been calling me and unloading on me, and this morning, I had had enough. I was patient with him for several minutes, as he ranted and raved about how inconsiderate my boss was, etc. But when he insinuated that I was somehow part of the problem, and started saying rude things about my competence, I said, "You know what? I don't get paid enough to listen to this", and I hung up the phone.

Will my boss hear about this one? Oh, absolutely, because if the client doesn't tell him, I will. Because if my boss won't stand behind me on this one, I wouldn't want to work here.

Friday, February 09, 2007


Why did the chicken cross the road? To show the deer how it's done.

How many feminists does it take to change a light bulb? Ten: One to change the bulb, and nine to form a "Survive the Darkness" support group.

How many lesbians does it take to change a light bulb? Three: One to change the bulb, and two to write a song about it.

Thursday, February 08, 2007


Direct transcript of dialogue from yesterday's "The Young and the Restless":

"..... so after Sheila blew up the yacht, we all thought that Lauren was dead, when the truth was, they were trapped in a bomb shelter outside of town, and then Sheila escaped, once again, and apparently went to South America, where she got plastic surgery to make her look exactly like Phyllis Newman ...... "

Wouldn't it be fun to be a writer on one of the soaps?

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Art Class

Last night was my first art class. I signed up for a four-session class at the Art School. The class was Drawing and Painting - Students' Choice. So here's what happened:

1. I pulled into the parking lot & headed toward the building. There was a guy who was bringing his dog into the building. I thought, that's pretty rude. Oops - the guy was my teacher.

2. I don't like dogs. Not afraid - just don't like. So of course this dirty, mangy old dog latched right onto me like I was a steak. Teacher said he would remove the dog if anyone there had a problem, and one guy obviously did, because he would freak out anytime the dog went near him, but dog stayed for the entire 90-minute class. Whining the entire time.

3. Teacher spent the first thirty minutes showing off his art (sketches of bare-breasted women, not that I have a problem with that, but it made me wonder if this guy's a lech, seeing as how that was all he showed), talking about where his art can be seen, discussing his Native American heritage, and talking about his tumultuous home life. Then he sketched a few basic shapes, pointed us toward some pencils, crayons, colored pencils, paper, and some basic objects (cubes, squares) to sketch, and told us to have at it.

4. Guy afraid of dog asks several times if the class will continue to be this basic. Teacher explains that it is basically self-directed, that we can work on whatever we want and he will give guidance. Guy afraid of dog goes to great pains to make sure we all know that he went to art class at his high school (oooohhh), and therefore needs more than a basic class. Teacher explains again the concept of self-directed learning.

5. This approach is going to work well for me, since I already paint (badly) and know in which areas I need to improve (all of them, but some more than others).

6. I wanted to improve my painting, but no paints were provided, just drawing supplies. So next week I'm going to drag in a bag of my watercolors and acrylics, brushes, etc., and have at it. Hopefully we can right to work next week - I can get a lot done in 90 minutes when I'm not distracted!

7. The whole thing was just entertaining in a bizarre way, and it least it got me out of the house on a 6 degree night.

Monday, February 05, 2007

Prince at the Super Bowl

OK, So Prince actually made it to the Super Bowl and actually performed some songs without going batshit crazy. Good for Prince. But what was up with the marching band? I mean, can you imagine Prince as a young man, when he was really innovative and exciting, saying, "One day, maybe I can do the Super Bowl halftime show, with a marching band backing me up!"

Or, who knows, maybe he really did say that. I mean, when you're that strange, anything could seem logical.

My apologies if Super Bowl is one word instead of two. And yes, I did watch the game. Yay Colts! I can't stand the Bears. Actually, once my beloved Bills are out of the picture (i.e., as soon as the regular season ends, lately), I kind of lose interest.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Telephone Tax Refund

OK, What's the deal with the telephone tax refund? The IRS instructions talk about a refund of the "federal excise tax". I looked through some old phone bills, and while I paid plenty of "federal tax", nowhere can I find a "federal excise tax". My sister Texas says "hey, don't worry about it, everybody who had phone service paid this tax, just take the standard refund amount", but if everybody paid it, why can't I find it on my old phone bills? Or are "federal tax" and "federal excise tax" one and the same?

Please help.