Wednesday, April 30, 2008


I figured I'd do a monthly 'what I'm listening to' kind of thing. This could be viewed as a lame placeholder kind of post. And probably it is. But it's my blog! So there!

These may or may not be newly released disks. They might not even be a good disk - just what is been in heavy rotation in my car (as usually the iPod is playing anywhere else).

When Adam Duritz sings, "I am the king of everything, I am the king of nothing" - he ain't lying. With the Counting Crows there is very little in between. They are either really good, or they are not.

That being said, they are never really bad - just marginal, which in a way is worse. I always remember a BAD song, I never remember a mediocre one. Ok - that's a lie. If we truly only use 10% of our brains, mine is filled up with song lyrics, writer's credits, record labels and release dates. I look to Morty for chart position. It is amazing I have the ability to get from Point A to Point B when I drive somewhere.

I've always liked the Crows. I can't say I'm a die-hard fan, but they've put out some quality stuff. Saturday Nights & Sunday Mornings hits the mark, now and again, but it misses too. Just like every Crows disk, save their debut. And that really is the problem. How can they ever live up to their first release - August and Everything After?

I get their 'concept' of the two sides of the disk, Saturday (more electric) and Sunday (more acoustic) and it kind of works.

The disk opens with "1492". My first thought was, 'what a beautiful mess!'. And it is. I'm guessing you love it or hate it. I really like it. But as I knew when Denton would hear it, he'd change the song - and he did.

"Hanging Tree" is still kind of a mess and I didn't like it at first. It is growing on me though. But "Sunday" (which ironically is on the Saturday side) is one of the best songs on the disk. Yeah, it kind of falls apart in the last minute, but I really like the first three and a half.

"Insignificant", "Los Angeles" and "Washington Square" seem to stand out for me too.

It is the acoustic side that stumbles a bit. Normally, I am driven more to acoustic type of music, and though this is ok, it's not ground-breaking or earth shattering. The single "You Can't Count on Me" is good enough, but it's not gonna break any charts. And I like "Le Ballet d'Or". But really I'm liking the electric side more.

The music is all playable, but it doesn't distinguish itself from Hard Candy or Recovering the Satellites all that much.

Like with many bands, if you lump their good stuff from multiple releases into one album, you'd have a killer disk. The Counting Crows are no different. Of the four studio disks that are not their debut, you'd have a great 14 song disk.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Score Tonite

Yesterday afternoon, a bunch of us left work early to go bowling. Though we had fun, it wasn't for fun, exactly.

It was some awareness event for Big Brothers/Big Sisters.

Though I convinced myself that out of the 10 people on my team that I would be the low scorer, imagine my surprise when I bested them all by about 30 points - on my first game, that is.

My second game, I wasn't quite as good, but I didn't suck either. I more than broke 100 on both games. Beat that Mr. Obama!!! Actually, that's not too bad considering it's been about 14 months since I bowled last.

One of the folks at work is a Big Brother. I find it very admirable with his work and family schedule - but he's committed to it. For about a nanosecond I thought - 'maybe I should (or could) be a Big Brother'.

Ruckiry (not Jon's boss), it was only a nanosecond. I came to and thought 'WTF am I thinking'? In a way, I feel Helen Lovejoy (the gossipy wife of the minister) sitting on my shoulder screaming in my ear, "won't somebody please think of the children???"

Can you imagine what direction I could possibly give to some child who had been abandoned by any male figure - or every male figure?

I can't.

Song by: the cast of Grease 2

Monday, April 28, 2008

Take a Picture

You might have thought that you'd get normal tourist-y pics from me. But you should all know me well enough to know that ain't happening. Ok, maybe you'll get one or three.

Here is a model of THE new construction project in Vegas. $8 billion dollars. Yes - BILLION. Hotels. Conference Center. Casino. Shopping. 14,000 parking spaces. 12,000 new jobs (upon completion - does not include the construction workers).

Here is the real thing, as seen from our hotel room. I could count 22 cranes on this site, but according to the site, at its peak, it will have 39. Construction goes on 6 days per week for about 18 hours per day. The scary thing - it will be completed in 2009. I would have guessed 2012.

Even the visitor center, which is now open, cost $24 million!!!!

This is the PowerShot (how porn sounding) that is at the top of the Stratosphere. Denton is one of those people up there.

This ride was closed. This seems worse than the PowerShot. Hanging and twirling. Out in
mid -air. 1,149 feet from the ground. No thank YOU! But to be fair, it's not the fall that will kill you - it's the sudden stop.

Yes....I had the song (along with altered lyrics) in my head for a good part of the day.

We at this sammich shoppe. For the entire time I somehow want to break into the Bugs Bunny routine of "I now dub thee, Sir Loin"

Not a bad shot, if I say so myself. Taken from Bellagio, after I had just cashed out from the Roulette table (and yes, I won). The dancing fountains on a weekend night go off every 15 minutes. This was the last thing we saw before going back to the hotel to get our shit packed. Oh that.

Not a completely horrible shot of me. ...and you know how I feel about my pictures.

Song by: Filter

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Leaving Las Vegas

We're done here. Probably for awhile. A long while.

I don't know I would have made this a vacation destination if work hadn't brought one of us here. It was ok and I needed the get away. We needed it.

But Vegas is kind of soulless. The whole Excess is not Enough is probably ok when you're 25, but I'm kind of over it at my age. I can't imagine needing or wanting to come back anytime soon.

I like the sun - I'll give you that. Any Vitamin D deficiency I might have had is most likely gone. The weather was grand and I got some colour and though I thought I got burned, it turned out not to be the case.

We celebrated Denton's birthday here too. Nothing extravagant - just some nice meals. We love Cafe Bellagio for a very expensive, but very good breakfast. And we went to the Stratosphere. For those who don't know it is the biggest building in Vegas - like the Space Needle in Seattle, but this has rides at the top and on the outside of the building. I'm not adverse to heights, but had no desire to do this. But I watched him do them.

Some Brits were there and they were grabbing the rails of the observation deck, though they were nowhere near the edge - not that you really could. I've never seen someone so terrified. They about shat when I told them of the roller coaster that was up there that went along the outside of the building.

We didn't do any shows. I'm so cheap. The gay quad wasn't in full force - Bette and Elton's shows were dark. Cher doesn't start for a few weeks (not that you could pay me to see that). That left Manilow. Danke nein.

I couldn't bring myself to pay $120 for 'Love'. I can listen to the Beatles anytime I want and not have to see a retread of every single Cirque de Soleil show ever done.

What else can I fill you in on?
  • It is probably official: Denton and I are the only two non-smokers in the city. I don't know the percentage of smokers overall in the U.S. - but they all seem to visit here. Every single one of them.
  • For the life of me I don't understand Craps. I can watch the in-house tutorial 18 times a day and then go watch guys play in person (never seen a female play it) and still shrug and go, "I don't get it". It is like chopsticks. I can never master them no matter how many people tell me how and how 'easy it is'. It's not.
  • We stayed at Planet Hollywood, which ironically doesn't have a Planet Hollywood in it. You have to go to Caesar's Palace if you want to eat there.
  • Planet Hollywood is the new home of what used to be the updated Aladdin - where we stayed in 2002 (?). I wanted to say something about Garkawe sawing logs while sleeping by the pool, but wasn't sure how happy he'd be. I guess we'll find out.
  • The casino here still sucks - and they have Pussycat Doll gambling by skanky and scantily dressed whores dealers. Denton calls it "Boobie Poker". I say, I'll stop by the table when they have "Pecker Poker".
  • They pipe in pseudo-horrible music. I knew it wouldn't be good when the cab pulled up and "Fox on the Run" was blaring. I was proven correct.

Coming up soon: pictures.

Song by: Sheryl Crow

Saturday, April 26, 2008


First off - I fixed the imageless post from 4/24.

Tis our last day in Vegas. We fly out tomorrow. Separately. I hate that. But Denton's business was weird about how they arrange flights. Even though direct was cheaper, he's on a multi-carrier, multi-stop that is more expensive. But the biz has some kickback with the travel agency and it just sucks.

But believe it or not, I have yet to gamble this trip. I'm not against it - I just don't do it much. Slots bore me - even though when Morty, Garkawe and I came here in 1992 (!!!!!), Quartermania is the most expensive thing we played. Honestly, I think it was all we could afford.

I would see the slots where you could put a $5 token in and I was just amazed that someone would drop that in one take. Yeah - I'm cheap. But then we saw the ones with $500 tokens and I about blanched!

I do like roulette, though I'll never do anything more than the $10 minimum table. If it gets to $15, I'm outta there. I will most likely play that today - our last day. I'll take maybe $200 and see what damage I can do. I've never really lost - at worst I come out even, at best I once walked away with about $600.

I know enough to stop, but I can easily see how people dig themselves in. "Ok, I'm down $100, but if I just spend this $50, maybe I can break even....." ....and so it goes. Poof! All of the sudden you're Art Schlichter - stealing your sister in law's wedding ring to gamble some more.

There is nothing out here I want (or need) to buy, so that's where some money will go. I know it is like throwing it away - but there's just the possibility, I'll win big!


Song by: Madonna

Friday, April 25, 2008

AntiChrist Superstar

No - it's really not stigmata. I couldn't get an index finger into either hole (that's what she said!).

It is just normal wear and tear from wearing my slingbacks sandals for a few days and walking a few extra miles per day than I normally do. I don't think that this foorwear was made for this kind of activity.

Something about the desert and my feet do not go well together. When we were here with Garkawe back in 2002 (?), my heels took a beating. They became dried, cracked and painful. It took years - really! - of pumicing and a gigundo tube of Miracle Foot Cream to get them back to somewhat normalcy. That is somewhat - not back to the soft and supple way they had been.

Well, all that work is now all shot to shit. I'm back to square one. Sandals, sun, heat, walking and the pool are not a skins best friend. And instead of bringing my footcare products with me, I just used the crappy hotel lotion. DO NOT DO THIS!!!

That crap has alcohol in it. It seeped into those deeply formed lines in my heels and burned. Ouchy.

So Monday, it is back to my pumice stone and Miracle Foot Cream.

Song by: Marilyn Manson

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Sun Sun Sun Sun

I'm bad about blogging when I'm on vacation. You don't see that a lot because I don't go on vacation a lot. Sad to say, the last time we went away was in July 2006!!!! We met Garkawe & Duck in NYC and saw Madonna in concert too.

Technically, I don't know I would call this a "vacation". Denton is working and hard at that. I'm just crashing at the hotel is company is paying for. This Vegas trip is more of a get away.

The weather is nice buy weird. Warm, but cold. 85 degrees with gusts of wind up to 40 miles per hour. The pool was great, even if there were mini-white caps on it. Getting out was painful. I practically froze my nips off.

And though I know better and Jon told me to do it - I did not wear sunscreen. I was outside at the pool for 90 minutes and burned my scalp.....and other places. The wind made it seem cooler than it was UV ray-wise. So even though it wasn't really cold out this evening at dinner (we ate outside), I re-froze my nips off.

I did the pool all on my own, as the man is working all day. We do dinner and that's it. Take tonite for example - we went to a nice French bistro. The food and wine were good....the service was nice too. But I saw something on the menu that made me laugh and laugh.

I'll assume that the French don't see Mac & Cheese as a neither one of those ingredients are. But when you're trying to appeal to the aveage american - you do what you what is needed to pull them into your establishment.

As for the average Las Vegas "guest", it became all too apparent on the plane what I was getting into. I'm feeling a lot better about myself after the Travis Hafner comment. The plane ride was an affirmation too - I was the most attractive man on the bird. No small feat when there was 230 folks on the frickin' plane.

I was also the only one not sporting mutliple items of bling. And by 'multiple', I mean any. I was also on the thin side.

The poor lady in front of me who could barely fit in her seat and called her fiance to tell him this, and adding, "I mean, you could NEVER fit!". What a pretty wedding that will be. Or won't be. I overheard her telling the guy sitting next to her "we're getting married on February 29, 2012. HA! A four year engagement. I sooo desparately wanted to lean up and say "it is so never going to happen!"

Then during the flight she'd have some outbursts about needing to land so she could go gamble! I'm like "lady, there are 2.5 more hours to go!"

And not for nothing, but the couple next door are going at it. Yes, doing the nasty. Her moaning. His rhythm. Oh's over already. Someone should have a talk with that boy about pacing himself.

Song by: Marti Jones

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Summertime in the Void

I won't say "I got nothin'" today, but I got close to nothin'.

Today is Earth Day. I keep seeing specials and magazines talking about going green. The 'carbon footprint' they are all leaving making the periodicals and prodcucing and transmitting these 'specials' must be astronomical and counterproductive.

But fuck - in Cleveland (proper) they don't even do recycling. It is a money loser and well, we are a poor big city. The poorest- twice out of the last three years. We're lucky to keep the schools open and police on the road.

Oddly enough, I've never been fully able to break the habit of separating some of our items still. Deep down I know it just goes into one truck and into one landfill, but what happens if the day comes we DO get recycling? I need to be prepared and in the habit of doing this stuff.

But I can't talk much about 'carbon footprinting'. My big clod-hoppers have been on planes more often this year than they have not. And I'm traveling almost three of the next four it only gets worse.

However, I am off to Vegas tonite....or this afternoon as it were. My man is out there for work, so I'm joining him for a few days. This will be my official first three vacation days I've taken since beginning work here 15 months ago.

Yes, I'm pathetic. For many reason, but you can add this one to the list.

Song by: i mother earth

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Why Can't I Be You?

Yesterday was one of the biggest highlights of the last few weeks....or possibly months....or even my entire life.

Hyperbole? Perhaps.

First, Denton and I were out to lunch at the Great Lakes Brewing Company (and no, I did not drink). It was just nice because it was 80 degrees and we sat outside for lunch. In April. In NE Ohio!!!

Both of us were traveling this last week. I can't explain why it feels so much different when we both travel (separate places) than when one of us is at home, but it does. Possibly something with the adage of someone keeping the home fires burning? So it was nice that we were both physically together after almost a week.

I've mentioned here numerous times regarding my low self-esteem. I don't care who you are, everyone wants to feel they are attractive to someone. But it is never a huge pick-me-up when throughout your life, the only two people you've ever been compared to physically is a 'young Anthony Perkins' (when I had hair) or the guy who plays Dr. Mark Greene on ER (when I didn't).

Oddly enough, twice in one week, someone asked me 'has anyone ever told you that you look like a young Anthony Perkins?' The first time, I figured the guy was a freak and just kept walking. It was harder to ignore when my English 160 instructor stopped in the middle of class to utter the same inquiry. ....and on top of that humiliation, I had to say, 'yes......yes they have'.

And then twice in one week, decades later, I got the similar Mark Greene comments. The first time I didn't get it, as I had never seen the show, nor knew the character. The second time I was at a stop light when two guys in the next car go, "hey, it's Dr. Mark Greene", to which I responded, "FUCK YOU!!!!" before zooming off. (I've since been compared to that character two other times this last year!)

So why so giddy now?

As we're sitting, eating our meals, two couples walk by with the hostess to be seated. One of the gentlemen, stopped turned around and came back to our table. I'm not sure if his comment or my response was more gay (though I'm 99.99% sure he wasn't):

"You look just like Travis Hafner", says he.

To which I reply, "I WISH!"

Yeah, I'm pretty sure I won the queer part of that conversation.

Oh, to even somewhat resemble Pronk would be too much to hope for. Though I don't think even for a second I took credence in the man's well intended comment, Denton could see it differently in my eyes.

"You're going to blog this, aren't you?" (damn straight!) Then he wondered aloud if my head would ever be small enough to get out the door - but since we were eating outside, I assured him it would.

Like I said above, everyone wants to feel they are attractive to someone. But my lack of esteem wouldn't really ever let me believe I am in a Travis-like world.

And the man had no idea what beast he could have been unleashing, or knew I thought Travis was woofy, unless of course he has been reading my blog and knows of my years of infatuation with Mr. Pronk (yes, that is MISTER Pronk to you!). Maybe he's just been waiting to run into me in hopes of tormenting me in some twisted twisted way.

Either way, I can live with that.

Song by: the Cure

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Crash & Burn

A few have asked me about the status of Viggo. His prognosis is good, but like any good healthcare system in this nation, there is a certain amount of therapy needed and a price to be paid for his recovery.

I was already in DC before Rick (my hunky Volvo repair guy) called me with an update. It's never good when he starts a conversation with 'are you sitting down?' ...and I told him as much.

We are thinking I hit a pothole or some other object in the road that might have seemed insignificant at the time. But, what that event did was break the oil pan, which in turn let all said oil out onto the ground, either while I was parked and didn't know it, or as I drove........or both.

Then I went on a highway ride at 60-70 mph.....and at least one cam busted (I don't even know what one is - we didn't have auto shoppe in high school!) and the last thing was the engine seizing.

What does that all mean? It means a new engine......on a 3.75 year old car. One that has a Turbo engine. Do the words 'ca-ching' mean anything to you all? Naturally, none of this is covered by my warranty.

This conversation happened a day before I saw those glass frames I mentioned yesterday. The reason I didn't blink (ha!) about that price of those was because I had already become numb to the price of a new engine. Or a used one, as the case may be.

New Engine: $10,000 (or so)
Used Engine: $5,322 (exact)

Being a Turbo did nothing to help the price of this little extracurricular event.

Thrown off guard a bit (duh!), he asked which I wanted. Doing a very very quick think job, I said the 'used'. I mean, I don't have $10,000 left on the car to pay off. I certainly wasn't going to spend that much on the car, where I could never get any money out of it if and when I sell it. Though at this point, I'll probably drive it into the ground. I might have to.

So, in the big scheme of things, what is $1,375 for eyeglass frames?

Only after I hung up did I think, 'hey, wait!!! I have insurance!'.

This is how daft I am about that shit: I had no idea if insurance would cover anything like this. I've never used my car insurance since becoming a licensed driver. Yes the math in your head, or get out TI-4500.

Seriously, someone else hit me once, and I collected from him, but I've never ever filed a claim. I have never had to. All I have ever done is pay my annual bills.

I called my agent, who oddly knew who I was - which I found strange since it is really the son of my true agent. The father retired and Chris took over the business.....he lives in Columbus and we've never met, and as I've said, I've never filed a claim. Hell, my payments don't even go to him, but to a central agency. But good for him. Good for me. In my head, I figured if they paid it and even if they doubled my premium, it's still less than half of the engine. That was my justification.

Chris talked with me. He talked with the adjuster. And in less than an hour after contacting him, they said they would pay for the engine. The used one, since that is the one I had already given approval on the day before (and ironically, the used still has about 11,000 miles less on it than my current outgoing engine). All I owe is my $500 deductible. Phew.

Now I can afford those glasses!!!

Song by: the Bangles

Friday, April 18, 2008

Them There Eyes

I don't really have a post subject matter at hand. It's been a whirlwind few days in DC - work work work. No play. So this is all just random thoughts.

But it was beautiful. The weather couldn't have been nicer, but these folks seem to think they are in the deep south. 50 degrees and they are still wearing gloves and scarves. ...and still are when the temps creep into the 70s. Me? I'm wearing nothing but a shirt and suit coat. ....well, pants too. But no overcoat. I didn't even pack one.

It is also the end of Cherry Blossom Festival and from what I could see they were still in bloom. Always purdy.

But now I'm stuck at the airport. Not stuck stuck. Delayed. My plane ran over a bolt on the runway during landing and they had to get a part from Dulles. The kitties should have me home by now to comfort them during my being away, but even that is delayed. And though this bolt thing has thwarted me getting home, I keep coming back to: which plane lost the bolt? I'm assuming it's a needed part. And even if not - isn't that what the Concord hit right before it upon taking off in France a few years ago - effectively sealing that airline's fate?

The pope came and went from DC....and not a moment too soon. He's NYC's problem now. But there are more priests in this airport than you can shake an altar boy at.

Upon wondering around DC I stumbled up on an eyeglass store. One that's hip but not too artsy-fartsy. I mean, they are, but not TOO artsy-fartsy. Mohammed helped me (not the religious leader, just a store clerk). As you may have read here over the years, I'm always in search of a great pair of frames. I always feel like I settle and never truly happy with whatever I select (save one pair).

But I did find them this time. They were my first selection and even though Mo (as I thought of him as) and I went through other glasses, we both agreed the initial pair were the ones. I then asked the $64,000 Question......or as it turns out the $1,375 question.

To paraphrase the pope: "Jesus Fuckin Christ!" Almost $1,400 for frames? I couldn't even ask what it would cost with lenses.

I should mention these aren't just any frames. No. I'm too good for just any frames. These are made out of horns from African water buffalo and cattle. I can only assume the carrying case is lined with baby seal fur. I didn't ask.

The thing is - I still want the frames. So extravagant. I was telling Denton about them saying I couldn't possibly afford them and the iPhone (not that I'm really planning on getting that anytime soon either), but his reply was priceless: "well, do you want to see or be seen?".

Song by: Billie Holiday

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

The Metro

My trip to DC coincides with Benedict XVI. Oh lucky me!!!!

Oh lucky him!!

I am such a fan of the Third Reich, it will be an honour just to be in the same city as der Fuher.

...obviously, I'm kidding.

Actually, I know we won't cross paths, because most of my transport will be via the Metro. In an effort to promote ridership during his visit, the WTA put up posters a of a bobble head pope riding the escalators up from the Metro. ....and then over protests of it, they were actually forced to take them down. Can you believe it?

But it will be a pain with him here. Because wherever he goes, so do 25,000 soldiers from the Clone Wars.

Seriously, the Metro is expecting ridership to increase by 25,000 each day over the next two days. Lucky me!

Except for a few transfer stations, I don't think it will impact me too much. g-d, I fucking hope not.

So W, Cheney and Benedict in the same town at the same town. When does the 4th Horseman get here?

Song by: Berlin

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Tax Man

Well, if you haven't already filed your taxes, or for an extension for them, Blobby would say you're kind of screwed.

We didn't let ours go down to the wire, but we didn't file as soon as we normally do either. Blame work. We did. ......and we're getting a return.

But true to Shrub form - that "stimulus package" is such a farce. It might work if the Five & Dime still existed. Ruckiry (not Jon's boss), the return goes electronically into our bank physical check.

I know W wants us to spend spend spend it........but that ain't gonna happen. He got us into this fucking mess and now he wants us to bail ourselves (and him) out by not paying our bills with it and instead to purchase a new Fry Daddy or something.

FUCK HIM! (how's that doing to bring up my Cuss O'Meter?)

No....that money, what little he's stimulating me with, will stay in Mr. Bank, thankyouverymuch.

Song by: the Beatles

Monday, April 14, 2008

Fast Car

Honestly, I wasn't going to post today.

I had so much work to do, as I was doing in-state travel today and I leave for DC tomorrow morning, that I was going to let a day slide with no post.

But as luck (?) would have it, a post just kind of came out of to speak.

Poor little Viggo went and died on me (again) today. 1 year, 1 month and 1 day since he did last time. .....but who's counting?

Last time it was in my work parking garage. Today it was driving up I-77. Lights came on, power went down and I made it to the side of the road with a few seconds to spare. ...and on a plus note, it was about 300 feet from a rest area.

Unfortunately, I was not alone. I was transporting my chief medical officer as well. And she had to be back in Cleveland for an appointment. Ooops.

A call to Roadside Assistance and my car dealer to let them know I'd be coming and to have me a loaner was all I could do. Then it was a waiting game ("oh the waiting game sucks, let's play Hungry Hungry Hippos!").

Now, I told Roadside Assistance there were two of us that would need a ride back to my dealer. It must have fallen on deaf ears. In a way it worked out, but not because of anything they did.

My doctor had to get back, so she called someone she knew and they picked her up. I was cool with that. I felt bad she was stuck, not with me, but because of me.

About 7-8 minutes after her ride showed, the tow truck showed. Eeeeek. As you can see it was a flatbed and I was hoping I could sit in my car on the bed. No such luck. I got to sit in the front cab with these two. In between them, I might add .....and with their miniature doberman pincher. At least the doggie was cute.

These guys got my car on the truck in what I swear was less than a minute. Not only have these guys seen Gone in 60 Seconds, they were probably the inspiration. Everything about them said "work release" or "on parole". ...right down to the spiderweb tatts that ran all up and down their neck. Purdy.

The doggie was thrilled to see me. I'm sure I broke every training rule. He (?) was on my lap and just in my face, kissing me all over....and of course, I let him. Then he (?) just curled up on my lap. I petted him the entire way, more out of something to do than to have to make conversation with these guys.

So, we'll see what's wrong with the car this time. In six months my warranty is up. This is a Volvo - I don't know I could afford repairs that aren't covered. I might have to swap out cars within the next half a year.

I currently have a Volvo loaner. A V70, instead of my V50. It's like Viggo, just on steroids. And it's brand-spanking-new. 57 miles on it. Mind you, I'll only be driving it to long term parking and pack, but it's still pretty sweet. And it has new car smell. ooooooooooooh. "we'll be right back".

Song by: Tracy Chapman

Sunday, April 13, 2008

I'll Change For You

I've got a slightly new look.......a slightly cleaner one.

Gone is the coloured background. I was tres tired of that pukish green/brown. I'm liking the white and think I will keep it, if for not other reason, I found out (the hard way) that when you change templates, you lose any customizations you had to your blog - like your blogroll disappears, as do any sidebar links.

I guess that's ok, because some of that had to be cleaned up anyway. At least it gave me an excuse to do it.

Gone too is the banner of IMPEACH BUSH.

That's actually how this renovation started. I thought I should just finally lose it after 4.5 years. With nine months to go in his presidency, I am finally thinking that no one is going to attempt to impeach the bastard. Look at it this way: in nine months I can put up one that says IMPEACH McCAIN.

My 'current phase of the moon' thingie is gone too. I'm sure I can get it back. I'm not sure I want it back. Still looking to mix things up, I guess.

My blog(s) are still fucked up though. I still have archive issues I need to resolve here. I think it's doable except for time constraints. I would still rather have my template that I do via the mirrored WordPress blog (though this one comes close), but that somehow is directed to this URL.

So many thoughts here and not enough time, or technical skills to accomplish what I'd like.

The new template is still a work in progress. I have other links I want to put up there, but that will be the easy chore.

I'm certainly open to suggestions though.

Song by: Rosanne Cash & Steve Earle

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Island of Lost Souls

It's the weekend and I'm strugging to find my blogging voice again.

I can't continue with just pseudo-funny pictures for my blog. Let's face it, the last Shopping with Blobby segment was weak! Weak, I tellz ya.

Today is probably no better.

We watched the return of 30 Rock the other night. The opening segment had me going for about 15 seconds, mostly because I wasn't fully paying attention to the NBC promo for their new show: MILF Island.

Yeah - I know it sounds theory. But today's television isn't theory. We actually have shows where Howie Mandel and Jeff Foxworthy are stars!!!!!

MILF Island is one step away from any other reality show that currently exists (''It has sex, lies, puberty, betrayal, relay races.").

No luxuries no-no....Amenities...too dull......

TV has never had so much fun with women named Deborah and De-Bor-ah.

Song by: Blondie

Friday, April 11, 2008


Yet another installment in the drudgery that is everyday shopping. The camera-phone makes it a bit more fun - though I get looks whenever I take pics of products. Like I care what people think!

It's a little gritty to roll around in (um..........I've heard), but it sure beats Splenda Fully Clothed

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Sign 'O' the Times

This is why I will never get a book deal. My maturity level isn't quite to the standard to ever get a publisher (let alone an agent or publicist) to look my way. I mean, I guess I could author what could become the next Captain Underpants.

Case in point:

This is my life. This is what I aspire to. Ok - that might be a bit much, but clearly stuff like this makes me laugh. Yes, I'm 12.

I mean - I don't even remember taking this picture. I certainly don't know where I took it. Well, I'm sure it was in a bathroom, but where? Which one? I have no idea.

Until I posted this, I never even saw the 'Board of Hell' comment. My attention to detail is somewhat lacking.

What it really comes down to is - I've been sick, I'm back at work and catching up and didn't really have time to think about something to post. There. I said it.

Until I have something better or more to say, I guess you all could kill some time by reading a book.

Song by: Prince

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Paperback Writer

....ok, Hardback Writer. But seriously, I don't remember that song.

Now people, I've begged. I've pleaded. I've threatened. For g-d's sakes, I've even attempted subtlety....which is sooooo not my style. And so far, Garkawe is the only person I know who has pre-ordered a copy of Rebecca's book.

Have I not given you people 5 years of my life that you can't give a friend of a friend $16.47 (via amazon)? C'mon people - where's the love??

Nice to Come Home To is released tomorrow. Do not disappoint me folks. Don't disappoint her or the folks at Riverhead Press (I almost typed 'Riverdale', but I think that's where Archie and Jughead went to school).

I don't think there will be Harry Potter lines at midnight, but that's no reason you can't get a jump on the crowds. You're gonna need it for the beach anyway and why not be the first on your block to say 'oh yeah - I read it before it was popular!!'re just getting to it now?'

I know I'm impartial - I'm not only her friend, but it could be argued that I am the inspiration for a character in the book (eat your heart out Chef Bob!).

I've read a few iterations of the book, but they stopped coming my way when I mentioned I was saving them so I could eBay them later when she was famous. I can't really blame her. Now I have my galley copy and a signed version of the hardcover. Smell ME!

Rebecca will be the first to admit that Nice to Come Home To might be considered a chick-lit piece, but at least it's a good one. My blog audience is the perfect one for this book. I don't think I have a lot of women reading this thing (well, Kris and Dity.......and Becca, of course), but I do have the gay men. And this is a story of lost love, finding oneself, dresses, cats and a man who may or may not be me. You'll just have to buy and read it to find out. .....and no cheating by getting it from the liberry.

You can find a really nice article on the author here and a fun audio interview with her right here. She doesn't mention me once, but I'll forgive it. ...........this time.

Song by: the Beatles (say like Margaret Meehan, as played by Catherine O'Hara)

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Talk Normal

Friday night we went to go see Laurie Anderson. Clearly this is not a timely post, but as you may have seen, I got sidetracked the last few days.

I've lost count at exactly how many times I've seen one of her performances. I know it is probably at 7 or 8, but not sure which. If it is the latter, I do believe that pushes her to the front of the artist I have ever seen the most live.

On her Homeland tour (this one), it was the first time I have seen her with additional musicians. I did not see her Home of the Brave tour, where she had a full band, and all other times it has been her and her alone.

It was also my least favourite time seeing her. She wasn't bad by any means, but the venue was ok and the mix was muddy. I almost have to assume that they did no soundcheck. There were a few times where she was clear, but more often than not much was garbled. Frustrating.

And it is frustrating because she is SO good. Not just at performance, but at what she has to say. Sometimes dead serious. Sometimes with a slightly humourous bent. If you don't know her, Anderson does not sing as much as talk. She has perfect diction - which is just great (and when the sound guy d0esn't fuck it up). She has one album which I would consider singing (Strange Angels), and with this performance she sang mostly everything.

The odd thing with Anderson is, even when she's out promoting something (which she isn't), I've never seen her do material that I have heard before. And conversely, I've never seen material she's performed show up on a future disk. Personally, I love that.

This material was darker than her previous shows. Topical for sure. If you have eight minutes to spare, this is one of the best things she did the other night. It is possibly the best protest song ever....and it's got her kind of whimsy.

After the performance, she came out to the lobby to mingle with the paying customers. I would have loved to talk with her, but I wasn't fighting that crowd.....and what a crowd. More Cosby-sweater wearing men than you can shake a stick at. No one I expected to see.

Laurie emerged in a red sweatshirt. Not black? I have never seen her out of black or white. I snapped some pics, but they were all horrid, so why embarrass myself or her by posting them?

Song by: Laurie Anderson

Monday, April 07, 2008

Fate's Right Hand

So I was supposed to go Lenox, MA this weekend for a book launch party for one Ms. Flowers. That was the plan anyway. Flights and times were not working out and work was completely kicking my ass, so try as I might, it was not meant to be.

One can wait until the last minute to get good flight deals for undersold planes: Albany or Hartford anyone??? But whereas the price was right, I had to fly on a Saturday and Tuesday.

Or, there was the thought of flying from Columbus on Skybus - which is pretty freakin' cheap. So cheap, in fact, the airline folded over the weekend. Couldn't you have just seen me driving 2.5 hours to Columbus and not have a flight out? Or worse - no flight home?

But the other backhand of the situation is this: I would have lost my bet regarding Saturday's post. It was not an allergic reaction or irritants from the peppers. I was and am truly sick.

Enough so that I knew when I woke up this morning I would be making a trip to the Emergency Department. At home my temp was 103F. Crikey! Had I gone to MA, I'd be a cranky, stranded and infectious houseguest.

As Denton getting me ready to go, I told him I needed a clean t-shirt, socks and underwear. He brought me a pair of the latter that really needed to be discarded, so I rejected them. Then he goes - 2xist? I say, 'oh nooooo. They're too nice for hospital ware.'. We both laughed. My humour was still intact.

I picked out the rest of my outfit too. Casual and easy to get in and out of. Flannel shirt (nothing to pull over my head - I didn't have the energy) and Crocs. Oh, and sweat pants. Naturally, all the colours matched. I mean - I AM gay!

For those of you who do not know - in my past lives, I used to manage two emergency departments. Knowing what I know, I called them first to see what the wait time and triage times were - and how many folks sitting waiting to be seen. I mean - I'm not a fool. If I was going to sit somewhere being sick for hours, I'd rather it be at home.

I did find a close (reliable) ED that could get me in right away - no waiting. I suggest you do this if your needs are not critical. Oh - and avoid Mondays in an ED at all costs!

True to their word, they took me right back and almost everyone was really nice: the RN, the PA, the MD. The only cranky one was the registration person when asking for emergency contact info and I said 'my partner'. I don't need your fuckin' silent 'tude on my life. Not when I'm sick. Not anytime, actually.

So here I am after my paper work was done, my pee was in a cup, my blood was in tubes and my chest x-rays were completed......oh and IV hung. You can see my Crocs and green sweats, along with the fabu bottom half of my hospital gown.

Since Denton didn't come back right away, I was texting him where I was and what they were doing. We didn't have any of that nastiness you hear of that if you're not family you can't come back. They were doing so much to me, he would have just been in the way.

He asked if I was live-blogging and I said 'no, but I need to you to take a picture of me.'. I honestly think he was slightly annoyed at that. But hell, I'm lying there for HOURS - what else am I going to do but write my blog in my head?

After all my tests, I just had to lie there and have my IV rehydrate me. Both liters. Due to my temp and lack of fluids, it is no surprise that I was tachycardic - and my resting heart rate was over 110. For the record, even in physical activity, it shouldn't be above 140. .....and hell, I was just lying there!

Here's my O2 saturation monitor. It is hard to see, but it has a little red light on my fingertip. I guess I could have done an "Elllllliotttttt" thing, but Denton knows I have never seen 'ET' and couldn't care less about it.

Most of my bloodwork was normal - though my white count was on the high end of borderline ("c'mon....I even wrote a song about it!"). My chest x-ray came back normal too. My diagnosis: acute bronchitis. I swear they weren't even going to say what 'it' was, if I hadn't asked.

My background makes me a great resource for hospital care, but I suppose I could be a nightmare patient because I do know so much. T.S.

While I wiled away the hours there, I was just there watching other patients and staff go by - as I asked to keep my curtain open. I was bored. As normal, there were lots of folks just in trying to score pain meds (welcome to Emergency Medicine!) and some lady who was not happy with her pelvic exam (or as she said - 'you know - down there!') and went out AMA....I couldn't hear what her male nurse said to her as she was leaving but she stopped, turned on a dime and said, "oh you did NOT just go there!". It was the first smile I had all day.

Song by: Rodney Crowell

Saturday, April 05, 2008

Torture Me

Yesterday, as I exited the elevators at work I could smell someone cooking in our office kitchen.

If you remember (and why would you?), we have a pretty nice gourmet set-up in the office. Viking everything. And we all have one week of kitchen duty per year or so.

But what this guy was cooking was pungent. It made it's way out to the lobby through glass doors. It didn't smell bad - just strong. About a half hour after being at my desk, I started coughing. ....and coughing. ....and coughing.

I don't have a cold...or an infection (at least I think I don't), I can only assume the chili oils wafting through the air, from the hot hot peppers he was cooking that set something off - or that I'm allergic to. One of the two. ....or I have a cold or infection. I'm still betting on the allergy or irritant.

So here I am almost 30 hours afterwards still clearing my lungs here and there. It's not as bad as yesterday, but not nearly where I thought I would be today.

Song by: the Red Hot Chili Peppers

Friday, April 04, 2008

Hot Diggity (Dog Ziggity Boom)

You could see it coming. Or I could.

Just cruising up I-71 at 80 mph as I am apt to do. You can say what you want about my driving ability, but I have never ever been ticketed. I've been stopped three times, sure, but let go each and every time. It must be my incredible good looks.

So yes, while traveling at this speed and changing lanes, what do I do? Well, I pull out my trusty digital camera and start taking pictures. Who doesn't want to see the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile?

It's not the first time I've seen it though. My first time I was maybe 3-4 years old. It was parked across the street from Sautters, a grocery store in Sylvania. I have this vague memory that it was in a car repair lot. A broken wiener. (Been there!)

For as long as we lived there, that day forward, I looked for the Wienermobile - never to be seen there again.

Many decades later (ok, three!), Denton and I took my niece Katie (then maybe 3) to see it and 'they' (whomever 'they' may be) were also having a contest to sing the Oscar Mayer Wiener song. I was going to be a stage uncle.

The Wienermobile never showed. NEVER showed!!!

Not killing myself, my passengers or other motorists to get these pictures was totally worth it!!

.....and how fun would it have been to have gotten a picture of this "car" going into a tunnel?

Song by: Perry Como

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Rub Me Raw

Truth be told - I have never had a massage.

When I have mentioned this little tidbit to folks, some look at me like I am from another planet. I mean, I dated one guy where we traded off massages, but either he wasn't good at it or I was too sensitive to his touch. It did nothing for me. (Neither did he, actually!)

I love it when people have told me I must and how it truly relaxes you. I'm not sure that is how I would relax. Hell, I can't even stand to lay out at a beach or pool for half as long as a massage, and now I would have to strip down, oil up and still have to pay for the privilege?

But as it turns out, I've hurt my neck a bit. I don't know if it was during trying to sleep on the plane on the way to Kansas City or in the hotel bed. It was just when I got home when I lie on my right side there is horrible pain. Oddly enough, I have full range of motion any other time with no aches whatsoever.

I'm not convinced I will do a massage. I'm not convinced I wont. Denton says I can have a medicinal massage - meaning throw back a few of his muscle relaxers. That's nice and everything, but I don't think those give you a happy ending.

Song by: Warren Zevon

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

I Swear It

I am truly finding this difficult to believe.

The Blog-O-Cuss Meter - Do you cuss a lot in your blog or website?
Created by OnePlusYou

Is anyone buying this? It feels to me that I drop the F-bomb quite a life and in blog. Definitely in the former. I'm a big fan of the word. Yeah, here and there, I do the Elliot Reid version and go for 'frick'.

The page I did the survey on (which I totally snagged from Moby, btw) says it is 23% less cussing than other blogs/websites who took the test. Maybe the other folks who have taken the test just have Blogger Tourette Syndrome or something.

Song by : the Violent Femmes

Tuesday, April 01, 2008


Yeah - I know not only do none of you care, but after my entries last year regarding baseball, most of you didn't even understand.

No worries. I'll walk you through it as need be.

But spring (or lack thereof) be damned - Opening Day was yesterday. And it was sooooo much better than last year. Not only did we not get 6" of snow, we didn't even get rain. AND it was like 60 degrees. I don't think we've seen that since November of last year. All is right with the world.

It doesn't hurt that we won 10-8 either. As always, I'm hoping for a World Series showing and really hoping for a win. Like I said before......then I can die.

Last year I peppered you with pictures of Mr. Hafner. And while he is still my ideal, I feel the need to mix it up a bit. .....and so ladies and gentlemen, I bring you Ryan Garko:

Song by: John Fogerty