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Archive for January, 2006

Thanks, Mom

Friday, January 27th, 2006

Monday night, The Worm and I, had a wonderful dinner out with a few members of my family: my Mom, my sister, my brother and his girlfriend (and, technically my little niece, even though she was napping in RoseRed's stomach).

We - as always - had a wonderful time, laughing, gabbing and making fun of any and everything. There really are no boundaries with us; there's little we won't touch.

I noticed something while we were chatting, eating and giggling, though. It was my Mom. She didn't say all that much, now that I think about it, but rather sat there with this complacent, very peaceful "glow" about her. I caught her, a few times when I was talking, just staring at me with this smile on her face. She was just kind of watching all of us talk and interact, and .... smiling.

She was proud of us - of each of us - it was obvious. She was enjoying watching her three grown children talk and get along.

It almost made me want children. Ha ha.

But it was so cool, and I loved her so much right then - for noticing, for loving us so much, for being such an awesome mom. She wasn't perfect, who the hell is? But she did the best she could and she always put us first. She loved us - she still loves us - and she'd do anything for each for us. She made holidays and growing up fun; and for that I, and my brother & sister, are completely blessed.

It makes me realize what a kickass grandmother she's going to be. She's still young, still fun. That little niece of mine is going to have such a great family; I hope she knows what coolness she's about to be born into.

The coolest-in-the-world, wackiest great-grandpa anyone could ever ask for.

A young, fun, loving, yet strict grandmother who's going to color with her and, at the same time, give her some structure.

A goofy, drunk - yet fun - grandfather, who is going to fill her head with music trivia and bring her to every friend and family member's house in the known world to show her off.

A sharp, funny aunt who is absolutely amazing with children and will play with her for hours without ever getting bored and will dress her in cute, trendy outfits from the moment she pops out of the womb. Who doesn't want a funny, fun aunt who keeps you in style?

A wacky & kooky, warm, understanding aunt who's going to teach her the zodiac signs along with her ABC's, and pour as much esoteric knowledge into that little noggin as possible. She'll also probably sneak her booze when she's 13, too.

She's also going to have two loving and loveable parents - a sometimes aloof, but very intelligent father who's going to read her history books to put her to sleep and a sweet, doting mother who is going to spoil her rotten. She'll get love and knowledge from them. Mom will teach her to garden, and Dad will teach her how to load a gun (not that I approve, but -sigh- he will). Mom will play dress-up with her, and Dad will let her watch History Channel specials with him. When Mom's not around, he'll also let her listen to metal and will try to instill an appreciation in her of good, hard rock music. Mom will teach her to quilt, and Dad will let her play with his old Legos.

Yeah, she's gonna be a happy kid surrounded by love, music, and knowledge. Lucky little bitch.

And it's all - really - because my Mom raised three awesome kids into three totally cool adults. So, thanks, Mom.

No Smoking in California

Friday, January 27th, 2006

California, the most extreme non-smoking state, has now decided that secondhand smoke is a "pollutant" - on par with diesel exhaust, arsenic and benzene.

Mark my words - and I'm putting it down here in this blog for posterity - in a few more years smoking will be illegal. Period.

I plan to start buying cartons of Camel Ultra Lights and hoarding them in my attic right now. Those who love to smoke, and those, like me, who enjoy an occasional puff may want to do the same.

Seven Children Gone

Thursday, January 26th, 2006

The horrible story of seven siblings being killed in a car accident yesterday in Florida is haunting me.

The children, 15-year-old driver Nicki Mann; Elizabeth Mann, 15; Johnny Mann, 13; Heaven Mann, 3; Ashley Kenn, 13; Miranda Finn, who was either 8- or 9-years-old; and Anthony Lamb, who was almost 2 years old, were crushed in between a stopped school bus and the truck that piled into the back of them.

Authorities are investigating how Alvin Wilkerson, the truck driver, - who suffered only minor injuries - failed to see a large, yellow bus and a car stopped in front of him. They are, thankfully, looking into the possibility that he was...you guessed it...on his cell phone.

I don't in any way mean to make light of this tragedy, but if he was on the phone, perhaps it will be the wake-up call America needs to make talking & driving illegal.

Whatever the reason, this man was obviously not paying attention and should be held completely accountable for these senseless deaths.

Willy Nagin

Friday, January 20th, 2006

I'm sure you've all heard New Orleans' Mayor Nagin's little MLK-Day "chocolate" reference by now.

Sure, New Orleans will be a "chocolate" city again, but I think what upset most people is that Nagin was blatantly ignoring the fact that New Orleans is New Orleans because of the wonderful and eclectic mix of many ethnicites. New Orleans will be New Orleans again when it is filled with chocolate, vanilla, strawberry, banana and everything in between once again.

I forgive him - he's under a lot of stress and he tends to say weird, outrageous things from time to time. A few misplaced words are the least of New Orleans worries right now.

Still, even I laughed my ass off when this Photoshop picture made its way into my Inbox; thought you'd get a chuckle, too.

Nagin's Chocolate New Orleans

Viewsonic’s Customer Services Sucks the Wrong End of a Donkey

Sunday, January 15th, 2006

And you thought you were having a bad day?

Check out the shit my old Dad's been having to deal with:

dealingwithviewsonic.com

There were many times in the past few months, while we were trying to help him with this mess, that I thought my Dad was literally going to have a heart attack while dealing with these people. I've known him all my life, and I've never seen him so upset and angry.

Suffice it say, none of us will ever be buying ViewSonic again. For the sake of your sanity (and heart), I encourage you to buy elsewhere as well.

Also, you can help by spreading the word. Take the URL above - link it, use it, spread it. You have my thanks.

flub and tetrode

Tuesday, January 10th, 2006

On the topic of unwanted email - have you ever read the weird paragraphs included with some spam? It's usually spam for an online university degree, penile enhancements, illegal prescriptions, home mortgages and loans. At the bottom you'll see a strange paragraph that, at first glance, appears to be a bunch of random search query words appended to the email.

But have you ever read them?

They almost make sense, in that they are sentences and can be "read" in a linear format. They don't really say anything sensible, but they are....interesting.

Here's one I got today:

flub and tetrode it's denaturalized nodosity a coincidental adouche in objectified the hitching ! wideness !imaginations grant sailorly weldor it uncatechized's edified institutions but uneulogized ! restrictions !bondman the guised it unequalized in frowardly a coliform but mired ! Chiron a loanda aElgin , republicanised in exoticness in puberal it's and endoneurium saffian Mattila illegitimatizes Pareto it periphery's adman trenchantly oscillating !
but foreignization's or crustacean's !

I know it's just "catch" words, but you have to wonder if it's some kind of strange spammer code. Perhaps it can be deciphered and it really reads something like, "Next month we begin Operation Stifle the Suck to prevent the beginning of Armageddon. Team One will be taking out Kevin Federline, and Team 2 will deal with Paris Hilton. These two can not be allowed to put out an album, lest the heavens will rain down hellfire from above and the angels will weep for the rest of eternity, and mankind, as we know it, will cease to be."

Hey, you never know.

2006 – The Year of Keg Stands

Tuesday, January 3rd, 2006

If 2006 turns out to be as good as the party that rang it in - I'm ready!

Baret and I went to my family's for New Year's Eve. There were meat, cheese, and veggie trays - chips, crackers, and dips galore. Champagne, wine, and a keg; all for a bash of less than 20 people.

Everyone ended up getting sotted. I got to see my Dad do a keg-stand, and then my sister - the only non-drinker in the family - do one! She's taken to indulging with us during festivities, so I've named her the "Holiday Drunk". Hey, every family needs one.

I had to put The Worm - who could no longer hold himself upright - to bed not long after 1am. He was so sick, he begged me to stay with him, and I passed out right next to him.

The next morning, the former party-house (my grandfather's) had transformed into a hospital of sorts. The able and sober were helping the hung-over to get around and were bringing them water and food. It was hilarious.

The Worm and I spent the rest of the weekend holed up inside, playing Everquest II.

I hope all of you had such a happy, and fun, New Year's!