Sunday, August 31, 2008

Drunken Angel

Last night was the first of two parties we are attending this weekend (tonite is the 2nd).

This one was at the home of one of my co-workers. Now, don't get me wrong, I like my co-workers but normally I don't socialize with them outside of the office....or post-office work events. I make an exception for Scott because I really like him and we really get along so well. I also really love his wife.

Though a number of folks (a fraction really) from the office were invited to this party, the majority of people in attendance would be his neighbors. Scott also assured me that he invited the eight invited people from the office wouldn't show, and he did it mostly as an outreach and nicety. The joke was on him - half of them did show.

Scott and I made a concerted effort not to talk about work, and even our boss, who did show, didn't. He and I talked politics, much to his wife's displeasure. But I like Marty a lot, so it was all cool.

But as more work folks showed, the more conversation turned to the environment turning sour in the office. Maybe someday soon, I'll share that with you. The only take away from it was, I thought I was the only one in the office having these feelings, but clearly there is a wide-spread dissatisfaction for our work place. But this conversation also turned the party sour, mostly for Denton.

Poor Denton, he knew none of these folks. We had met some really nice neighbors of Scott, but eventually it became work folks. .....and some drunk chick.

Rambling. Obstinate. At times incoherent. I finally had to tune her out, but not before turning to Scott and saying "you throw the best parties!" All of the sudden, a pressing on my foot brought me back to reality. Denton was trapped next to her with no way of avoidance. His pressing sandal said: "save me!".

Which I did.

We had been there for hours and any number of beers. I excused ourselves for the evening, thanking the host and hostess before heading to our car.

Overall we had a nice time. Good food. Lot to drink. Some really good conversations with their neighbors.

Now it's our turn to invite Scott and his wife over for dinner.



Song by: Lucinda Williams

Saturday, August 30, 2008

We Gotta Get You a Woman

Sarah Palin. Who?

Seriously, this is the choice? Their choice?

Don't get me wrong, I'll take her over Tom Ridge or Mitt Romney. Huckabee wasn't really a consideration, since he took a seven figure position at Fox "News". ...but not only an unknown, but an inexperienced unknown?

I know the initial thought of everyone was: 'oh he's going after the disenfranchised female vote now that Hillary is out.' And no doubt he is. But McCain is being a bit short-sighted.

As I pointed out to our email group today there are serious flaws in this thought-process:
  • Women are smarter than men, so they can see through that kind of crap
  • Women liked Hillary not only because of name recognition, but because she been done wronged by her man, survived and thrived in spite of it and was good at what she does
  • Women will eat an unknown alive. You've seen 'Mean Girls'. You know how they treat each other
I'm all for a woman President or VP. Just not one who was a mayor of a town that had 6,000 residents. Not one who has been a governor for only 2 years (not even 2 years - the media is rounding up! - damn liberal media!!!!!). Not one who has zero foreign policy or national policy experience. This seems to be only because she is a woman. And that kind of demeans the ones are more qualified.

Let's face it - if president, McCain could drop dead day one, or at least before the end of his first term. Is Sarah the one we want to be in charge going forward from there? Would she be the one to finally help us achieve victory in Iraq?? I mean - granted, those "advisers" would run the country - just like they have been for the last eight years, so maybe she'd just be the face on some new currency.

Yes yes - I know what the naysayers would say: Bill Clinton was only a governor. But he was one for eight years. Not 1.8. But he had a little more background in politics than being Miss Congeniality in the Miss Wasilla Contest. Chances are Bill boinked a Miss Wasilla though.

Like most politicians, she is a contradiction in beliefs. Most of her male counterparts are pro-life, but pro-death penalty. I just don't get that one. Sarah is pro-ANWR drilling, but has serious concerns about global warming. She's ok with raping her home state, if it gets them revenue I guess. Polar bears, be damned.

Bringing Palin on-board should do at least one thing though: it has to shut McCain up about Obama not being experienced enough. I'm not sure he's got a leg to stand on with that one.

It will be an interesting race, no doubt. Not one I want to be subject to, but living in Ohio there is little chance of avoiding this. I have friends in Massachusetts who nary see a political ad. We've been having them here for months - and they are only about to get worse...........and more frequent.

But I shouldn't whine about it too much - it makes me sound like a girl!




Song by: Todd Rundgren

Friday, August 29, 2008

Talk Talk

It seems all I've been doing for the last few weeks is trying to eke out interviews between my regularly scheduled job. And I'm sure it is affecting my job. You know - the one that actually pays me every two weeks for supposedly showing up and producing some kind of results.

Yesterday was no different though - one more and possibly final set of interviews for this so called change in my career path. Fingers crossed, that is.

It has been fortuitous that my current boss has been on the road this week, which means, I didn't have to finagle being out of the office too much with folks noticing. I got to interview without the added stress of sneaking out. Not that it mattered much yesterday.

After I finally got to work, it was close to lunch time. And I'm a man with food needs. I'm not Morty in this respect, but I still have to eat. So, work for an hour, get food.

As I'm stepping off the elevator, literally, the power goes out. Phew - dodged a bullet there, though I had a Subway 6"er with me, so I think I would have survived had I been stuck in the Otis contraption. But that minimal outage was enough to knock out our phones and any computer connectivity. Not that I left right away. I stuck around for two hours in hopes it would come back to life. No such luck - so I boogied on out of there and spent some quality time with the kitties......and Ina Garten.

Oh yeah - the interview. I think it went well. I also think I'm losing perspective on how I think these things actually go. Right now I am pretty confident, but I might be fooling myself too. Right now, I know of no timeline they are working under to get these positions filled.

The one today was the one I really want. I like the medical director and there are some projects over the next three years that are horribly exciting for a dork like me. The director was also impressed and a bit freaked out that I not only remember talking to him six years ago, but where we were and what subjects we discussed.

It is a blessing and a curse - but hopefully he won't think of me as stalkerish, but someone with a great head for detail and recall. These things come in handy for business. Denton will tell you they are annoying for when we have an argument and I can throw stuff back in his face.

Potato. Potatoe.



Song by: Talk Talk

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Ready to Run

I wish I could get jazzed by the Democratic Convention - but I can't. I'm not.

I know I have a heart of stone, but I do not get people crying over Ted Kennedy. His speech was boring - and part of it lifted from his more successful brother. C'mon, it's been 48 years since the 'torch has been passed' oration - only Mayor Quimby has done it better. Get some new lines, Ted.

....and the intro!! Could they only find his new(er) wife and John Kerry to talk about him? The third longest ever sitting senator in history, and those were the only two they could find?

I totally missed Hillary. I suppose her speech could have been good, but that's how disinterested I am in this entire election cycle at this point in time. For g-d's sakes, Obama announced his running mate TWENTY MONTHS after announcing his campaign!!!!! 20!!!!!

I'm so over it at this point.

Our little email group was chatting about this for part of the day. No one, except maybe Becky, is what we would call behind Obama. He's ok and all - but just ok. We'll all vote for him, because what other choice do we really have? I do fear my vote won't be for him, but a vote against McCain.

Just like Kerry in 2004. Oy.

While chatting with Becca later, she reminded me of something I saw in '30 Rock'. I couldn't isolate the clip I wanted, so wait for 17 seconds into the montage.






Song by: Dixie Chicks

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Shopping with Blobby

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!

Becky provided the earlier post, but this one is all mine.

Is this a gay man's dream, or what? Snausage fest '08. Provided by Whole Foods.

I really have nothing else to say with this one. Feel free to caption it yourself, if you must. Or at least if you feel like it.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Oh Cheap Chatter (why don't i seem like man to you?)

Just a follow-up to my potential quasi-job search.

Yesterday morning I had the first of my second round of interviews. 'Say what?' you say? Yes, I actually have a second second round coming up on Thursday.

I was called in for one possibility and as has happened in the past, it has morphed into two potential positions. In theory, I want one more than the other. Isn't that the way it's supposed to happen? You have to have a preference. It's like kids - no matter what parents say - they always like one more than another one.

That means nothing to the people on the other side of the desk necessarily. As the interviewee, it is up to me to express my desires and where I think I would be a better fit. Try to sell myself, all the while, balancing the less desirable job - which isn't really bad at all. I mean, even the second choice could still be an amazing opportunity - as long as I don't alienate them.

The good thing is - both areas know I'm up for both jobs. Maybe that will cancel me out of both. However, maybe it puts me in a nice bargaining place. I'm not really good at that though. Job (or salary or benefit) negotiations has never been my strong suit. I tend to be take what is offered if I like the job.

Of course, a third option is they fight to the death over me. That'd be cool.




Song by: Don Dixon

Monday, August 25, 2008

RECORD OF THE MONTH

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).

At least I can say All I Intend to Be is not a bad album, but I'm not going so far to say it is a great disk either. It's no Wrecking Ball or Red Dirt Girl. Heck, it's not even a Cowgirl's Prayer.

It seems when it was released a few months back, every reviewer heaped nothing but praise on it. That's hard to live up to. And in my opinion, it doesn't.

As expected, there is nothing wrong with Harris' voice - it is still crystalline and unique as always. And though it was recorded over a three year stretch with her ex-husband as producer, it still has decent flow and consistency. A little too much consistency, where to a point there seems to be little deviation in the song style.

Maybe it's the material. But whatever it is, it is just not firing on all cylinders for me.

That's not to say it is bad - as I said earlier. It's fine, but it doesn't have too many stand-outs and that is usually what I love about Emmylou - she has plenty of them. But compared to anything else out there, it's a very good disk, but compared to some of her other works, it is just very middle of the road.

As usual, I just purchased her without listening to it, as you usually get a quality disk. Technically it is - I was just expecting so much more.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Walk a Thin Line

Last night we went out see Man on Wire. I know, I know, it sounds like it should be Man on A Wire - but it's not. You'll understand when/if you seen it.

If you have not heard of it - the movie is a fairly new and limited release, probably only to the art house kind of theaters. I don't think Cinemark will be showing it in too many cities - if any.

And for those who don't know the story, before the World Trade Centers were completed, a Frenchman, Phillippe Petit, walked a highwire between the North and South Towers. This movie is a pseudo-documentary of that event.

Why pseudo? Since this was done in secret in 1974, there was no footage of the sneaking into and towers for set-up et al. Just pictures and film of the execution. So there are a lot of reenactments, but they are well done.

You know how the story ends. And you know how the non-story ends. Kind of. After 9/11 (and for this movie), Petit was interviewed extensively about the towers and his event. So, I don't think there are any spoilers in telling you that he makes the walk. And while it is never ever mentioned and the movie never goes past the Coup in 1974, you know how the story of the towers ends too. Though 9/11 is never mentioned, it is very hard to sit there and not fast forward 27 years and think of that day.

That being said - the filmmakers did a great job of keeping suspense up with the planning and scheming of Petit and his crew.

Clearly it takes a brave or foolish man to do something like this. But I tell you - the image below would have scared the crap out of me way more than the walk across. Obviously, I can say that without ever having to prove either - even if the towers were still standing.


The movie is barely over an hour long - so you are not in for any major time commitment. There are no stars, no special affects, no soon to be Oscar nominated song.

Petit's accomplishment was also documented in a children's book, The Man Who Walked Between the Towers - which I purchased for one of my nieces a number of years back. My sister said it was really well done.

But the biggest accomplishment? I'm still kind of on track for our one movie per month. I think this was #7, but with a big holiday season upon us, I think I can eke it out.



Song by: Fleetwood Mac

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Hair

No surprise here. I mean - not really.

Who were the other real choices besides Bayh? It wasn't ever going to be Clinton or Richardson. Not by a long shot.

I'm also non-plussed. I like Joe, but he's run two (or has it been three?) extremely unsuccessful presidential runs. I don't think he has ever made it out of Iowa. I'm not sure he ever made it into Iowa - not really.

As Andrew pointed out in a Twit earlier this morning - Biden carries a state that has 3 electoral votes. He fails to mention that Delaware was the first state. Their license plates say so, so it must be true. Being first has to hold some weight, no? Wait - no. I guess it doesn't.

However, he is Roman Catholic so, he could carry that group of swing voters, which is only slightly larger than his other special interest group: the Hair Club for Men.

I know it was early morning, but I liked PBS on-lines headline: Obama Taps Veteran Senator Joe Biden for Vice President

I don't know why I found it funny. When you hear 'tap' anymore, you I don't think 'select' or 'duck duck goose'.....you I think....well........you know.........TAP!!!!

I also found it humourous that CNN scooped Obama's big text messaging campaign. Don't get me wrong, I don't think for a minute that wasn't leaked to them on purpose, but I'm also not enough of a fool to give any campaign my cell number to text me with VP choices, which will turn into fund-raising requests and political ads that will run through the election cycle.



Song by: the Cowsills

Friday, August 22, 2008

Flying

I missed a few days here - I hate when that happens? Sometimes work travel just throws kinks into my entire schedule. Things like blogs. And news.

I rarely, if ever, turn on the tv. The newspaper? I pick it up as I walk out the hotel room and throw it inside. I throw it away when I finally make it back. A plane crash in Spain kills 153? Who knew? Stephanie Tubbs-Jones dies of an aneurysm? News to me!

But at least now that I'm home I have something to blog about. Nothing groundbreaking or anything, but when do I ever? Just more travel crap.

There were hours of travel delays on the way home. Mostly it was due to Hurricane Fay (there was a hurricane?) in Florida not allowing planes to get from point A to point B. Crews were there - the birds were not. I can deal with that well enough. The perceived worse case scenario would be if they got completely canceled, I could rent a car and be home in 6 hours.

Turns out a worse case scenario would be sitting near the back of the plane and a woman gets along with her baby. Not newborn, but not toddler. A little girl finding her voice - and she used it the entire flight. Not crying. Talking.....as much as babies can talk.

But no, that's not the bad part. I'm guessing mom hadn't showered for days. And it was bad. Really really bad.

Mind you - things happen and she was alone with the baby and it was hot hot hot out. You suck it up and ride it out for the 53 minute flight. I put on my air and would direct the smells as much as I could and have some better air when it was allowed. I mouth breathed a lot.

The guy across the aisle from me wasn't nearly as nice about it. He asked the flight attendant for a seat up front. There weren't any, as the flight was oversold. Then he asked for an air freshener!!!! The attendant tried to be nice and tactfully provide an explanation that the bathroom was cleaned - and he had to come back and say, "that isn't the issue!"

This poor woman had to hear it all and understand the issue. He didn't have to be such a prick. But he was.

On the way home from the airport, I met some folks from work - and I ended up having three margaritas......on the rocks. No salt.

Salt makes me swell. ....and I'm already swell.



Song by: Chris Isaak

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Ticket to Ride

I almost missed a day.

ALMOST.

Yesterday was an almost full work day and then a few hours of travel to DC. But at least it was to DC.

I was scheduled to fly on the 4:40 to Baltimore and take the train to DC. It's about $780 cheaper. I'm not kidding. Same amount of time in the air, 25 miles apart by freeway, but a world's difference in cold hard cash.

It's really the trains that throw me. If the plane is late, or the shuttle, I sit and wait for a train. And wait. And wait. Then it's still a Metro ride and a walk. Don't say 'cab it', because it's about a $90 cab ride from BWI. Swear to g-d.

So, I was sitting in CLE, listening to tunes and noticed how full the gate was. On my own, I go axe the counter lady if the flight was oversold. It was. Then I axe if they are taking volunteers to get off the plane. They were. Then I axe if they have open seats on the 4:40 fight to National. They did.

It was a no-brainer for me. I took the change. I cut 60-90 minutes from my trip and got a $150 voucher. Sweet! To be honest, I would have done it for the time decrease alone, but why tell them that?

What I couldn't figger out was, 'why no announcement at the gate' asking for volunteers? The flight to National had at least 10 open seats. I know from experience that many of those folks catch the same train to the city that I do from BWI - so why not fill up BOTH planes?

But I can't worry about them. I was out for #1.


Song by: the Carpenters

sure, I could have said the Beatles, but you have to listen to Karen & Richard's version. It is unintentionally hilarious!!!!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Bridge Over Troubled Water

We were downtown yesterday for lunch - sitting outside eating marginal food. It's called Shooters, but I always call it S-hooters, as it is the closest I will get to actually going to a Hooters. A few years back, we took Morty, George and Jon there. I think this is the first time I've been back since. So, I wait three years for a return, if that tells you anything.

The establishment is on what is called the West Bank of the Flats. Years ago, both the East and West banks were thriving, now - not so much.

As you can see, the place is right at the mouth of the Cuyahoga River. A very twisty-turny river that back in 1969 caught on fire, as it was so polluted. It is one of the reasons Cleveland was such the butt of so many jokes a while back.

Also a few years back at this exact same spot where I was sitting, a cigarette boat crashed into the side, exploding and burning many folks. Killing a few too. No shock to find that boat drive was drunker than drunk. And Canadian. He tried to fight extradition and payment of reparations to the victims or their families.

You can also see that the bridge comes down to let trains cross the river and make their way across country. A minimum of 49 trains a day do this. Don't ask me how I know, I just do. It also means boats wanting to get to or from Lake Erie sit and wait....and wait.....and wait.

I think the bridge was down for about an hour while about six trains went east or west. Sometimes crossing the span at the same time. Yes, there are two sets of tracks.

You can see a number of vessels moving after the bridge finally went up - which was for all of about 5 minutes before more trains needed to come through to ship supplies we need daily to live. Or they were just hauling nuclear waste - hard to say.

If you look to your right, there used to be tons of buildings over on the East bank. They are mostly all gone. Years ago, it was a thriving hot spot and really made Cleveland hip. Or as hip as we could ever be.

The downfall was alcohol and card hold cash. Drunk folks went and fell into the river and drown. Over zealous bouncers killed one or two patrons and actually blinded another. And one bar was actually putting GHB in their water!!! Can you imagine? "I'd like a glass of water - hold the roofie!"

I will say, while the few times I was down there during its heyday, I had fun (and was drunk drunk drunk!), in actual daylight hours, if you wanted to be down there for food before a ballgame, the entire Flats smelled of piss and stale puke. Nice for the neighbors.

Now Eminent Domain has taken effect. Most of the East bank has been razed. So, in will come some company HQs (Ernst & Young, Eaton, etc) to build on the space and then have some decent pubs & restaurants do the same. Then, hopefully, it will force the West bank to revitalize.


btw.....I'm not really thrilled with the iPhone camera. There is no way to focus that I know of and everything seems a bit out of, if you axe me.


Song by: Simon & Garfunkle

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Eat the Music

I don't want to "iPhone" you people to death, but there are some really neat things about this little device. Clearly I'm still learning about this thing, as I will be over the next few weeks or months.

On the main screen, there are a number pre-set programs that come with the phone. One of those is an Application Store. Which means lots and lots programs you can install on your device. Some are free, some cost $$$$. Many are useless. I mean I stopped counting at 10, the number of Magic 8 Ball ones that are available.

Will I purchase it? Signs Point to Yes. My Sources Say No.

Some others are the flame of a lighter, that you can hold up in concerts for encores.

Seriously? This is what programmers do with their time and try to charge even $0.99 for it? Or the mug of beer that is full, but if you tip your phone like you're drinking it, it disappears. Funny......................ONCE! ...if that.

Naturally there are games, news services, infotainment areas and the likes. Even a program that tracks where you've been and how you got to your end point. I guess it's like GPS tracking. Orwellian, but cool nonetheless.

That being said, there are some cool things on there too - none so far I've been willing to pay for , but some are no charge. But since I am a music weirdo, I am trying out some out - for free. DUH!

Shazam - hold your iPhone up to music that you don't know (or even that you do) and it will bring back the song title and artist. Handy for those television shows/movies where they play music you like but don't credit it. Or the radio stations who wait 12 songs to reveal their play list, if they actually do. I have tried it on 5 songs and only one did it not recognize (Annabella's "Fever").

It will also link it to a YouTube video if it can. More 1984 for you.

Midomi - which bills itself as the "ultimate music search". Lofty

But you can sing or hum a tune into your iPhone and it will bring back the song and as many possible versions it knows. Denton did it with 'Moon River'. This will be perfect with Morty trying to figure out if the song is "Shout" or "Close to the Edit". Oh - maybe the device isn't that advanced.

It also does a music/artist search with a vast playlist that you can at least sample. I've tried lesser known artists and it has them in there. Not too shabby.

I promise to keep these posts to a minimum.......but I guess that's all relative.



Song by: Kate Bush

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Sixteen Days

Seriously? How often can you use a picture like this? Well, I suppose once per year.


We saw this on the way to Cape Hatteras and I made Denton pull over so I could snap a pic of it. I did it mostly for my friend Doug, whose birthday is today. I sent this image to him in a separate email, as I don't think he ever reads this blog. Fucker.

Doug is a twin. When I want to really really get this goat, I ask him how his brother is. His identical straight brother. Well I guess they can't be identical if Doug likes man-on-man action. But to really bother him, I ask how his younger brother is. Not his twin, just another, much younger brother. I've never actually met any of his family. It's just so easy to push his buttons.

And so much fun.



Song by: Lori Carson

Friday, August 15, 2008

B-A-B-Y

George sent me this in an email earlier today. Not sure why I didn't get it, since I am a moveon member, but I'll worry about that later. Maybe. Probably not.

Dear MoveOn member,

Can you imagine living in a place where birth control is considered an "abortion" and health insurers won't cover it? Where even rape victims are denied emergency contraception?

It seems unbelievable, but the Bush Administration is quietly trying to redefine "abortion" to include birth control. The Houston Chronicle says this could wipe out dozens of state laws that protect women's reproductive freedom and protect rape victims.1 Access to basic health care for millions of women would be jeopardized. And it's being pushed as a "rule change"­meaning, it doesn't need congressional approval.

Can you sign an emergency message to Health and Human Services Secretary Mike Leavitt, whose department is considering this rule change right now? Tell him: "Contraception is NOT abortion. The Bush Administration's proposal to change the definition of abortion and reduce women's access to birth control must be stopped."

Clicking here will add your name to this message:
http://pol.moveon.org/contraception/o.pl?id=13468-5210488-tMJkcjx&t=4

The best way to beat back this proposal is to show Secretary Leavitt massive public outrage­that's why today we're launching this petition jointly with Planned Parenthood Action Fund. Together, we'll deliver every signature to Leavitt. You can help add to our momentum by forwarding this message to friends.

Here's what some others are saying about this proposal:
The draft regulation would define birth control as abortion...it could deny access to critical family planning for women across the country.­Letter signed by Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, and 26 other senators.2

The draft rule could void laws in 27 states that require insurance companies to provide birth control coverage for women requesting it [and] laws in 14 states requiring that rape victims receive counseling and access to emergency, day-after contraceptives.­Houston Chronicle editorial3

The administration needs to stop playing word games with women's health and state clearly they will reject any regulations that will undermine women's access to basic health care.­Cecile Richards, president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America.4

[It's] a spectacular act of complicity with the religious right... ­RH Reality Check, Information and Analysis for Reproductive Health5
The birth control pill, the IUD, and emergency contraception might all become unavailable­illegal­as a result.­Brigid Riley, executive director of a Minnesota teen pregnancy prevention organization6

Can you help send a loud message to Secretary Leavitt that birth control is NOT abortion? Clicking here will sign your name:
http://pol.moveon.org/contraception/o.pl?id=13468-5210488-tMJkcjx&t=5

Thanks for all you do.

–Nita, Laura, Patrick S., Adam G., and the rest of the team


Seriously, I am so over this reproductive rights issue. 97% decisions being made by men. I'm a man and I think we should have much less say in the matter. Of course, these are the men who still believe in capital punishment.

I encourage you to sign the petition.



Song by: Rachel Sweet

Thursday, August 14, 2008

llamame

Another birthday come and gone. No biggie, right? Right.

I got some nice calls. Some good emails. A few cards. Even some folks at work seemed to know about the day - and clearly passed the word around. That last part didn't go down well with me. Do I really want some guy from IT I barely know coming up to me and wishing me a 'happy birthday'? I don't think so.

I begrudgingly let a few of them take me out to lunch. It was a good salad and I got a piece of cake out of it, so it wasn't all bad. But I really don't like making a big deal about the day - I think I've said that here every year I've had this blog. I mean, I'm ok to do stuff with Denton, but I'm a low key guy when it comes to having attention brought to me that way. Yes - even for a Leo.

I mean - I want attention, but only when I call it to myself. I am a Leo. Not just because I got birthed. Let it be for my superior dancing around the kitchen skills, or my way around an Excel spreadsheet. Yes, I'm a dancing geek.

So, why the "Call Me" header? Because Denton got me the present: iPhone 3G (16 gig!), white back. I was hoping, of course, but who knew?

Well, I did, kind of. He calls me at work to tell me that 'oh, your cell phone isn't currently working. I've had the service cut off.' Since I have Sprint and the iPhones are on AT&T, I kind of figured out he had done something.

Don't go thinking he was being completely altruistic, he got himself one too (black back). Now I just need to figure out how to use it exactly. I mean I know how to answer the phone and dial it, but I have to get my contacts moved over, load my music, set up my email, etc.

I'm quite excited, a little nervous and seemingly somewhat guilty for having such a device. But I am thrilled to be getting rid of my Treo and Sprint. The only two places I couldn't use it: home and work. ZERO signal. None. It was so frustrating.

I know Becky and Andrew love theirs, so it must be good.

Oh, and I'll be able to blog from it and Twitter away, I guess. There will be no stopping me!!!!


Song by: Blondie (Spanish version, 'natch!)
which btw, is comical because about the only two words they don't sing in Spanish are 'Call Me'.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

So Happy Birthday

No special post. Honest.

Today I make it to my 45th birthday. Or as I call it, the start of my 46th year. As I say every year - who knew I'd make it this long? Certainly not me. I should have been dead at least three times over.

Maybe it is a special post.

I think I have a few reasons while I'm still here: the man. the cats. the friends. Not necessarily in that order - but possibly. I guess we shouldn't rule out a whole lot of luck.

At first I was thinking 45 is not a milestone birthday, but really - which one isn't? That you can make 365 days without taking the big dirt nap should be celebrated.

So what are we doing? Doubtful we're doing anything. I could be wrong and get surprised. Our big thing is doing a dinner out. We strive for doing a place neither of us has been before. But we rarely make it on the actual day. I will assume in the next weekend or two we'll get there.

....then and maybe then, I'll frickin' Twitter it.



Song by: Laurie Anderson

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

The Working Hour

I don't know why I'm even telling you this - but yesterday I had some preliminary discussions with a group regarding a new job.

I normally don't blog about my job per se too much. Travel for my job, sure. My job itself? Not so much. And I don't think I'll start here.

Suffice to say, I'm not going into specifics here - at least yet. I can say that I didn't go looking - they found me. So I met with them for two hours yesterday. And yes, they would like me to come back for round #2.

No doubt I will comply, because I just don't know where I stand currently, and this is something that would be more for my career than a job. It curtails travel - which oddly enough I like a lot, but whatta gonna do?

The interviews were pretty laid back, but I think I interview fairly well. I'm not bragging, it is just that I have conducted so many, I think I know the pitfalls of being on the other side. That being said, I'm unflinchingly honest in these things. Not unlike here, I have little self-censor mode. It's a blessing and a curse. But usually all parties go in, eyes wide open.

The benefits are better. The pay is better. The commute is less. There is no travel, save some conferences and meetings.

I'll keep you updated, but it will be a slow process. It took 4.5 weeks to schedule this interview between all schedules. I don't know how long round #2 will take.



Song by: Tears for Fears

Monday, August 11, 2008

Record of the Month - Classic

My second installment of a disk I have enjoyed over the years. I'm trying to keep the Record of the Month posts to be fairly new releases. Classics are going to be ones that are at least 5 years old.

When you hear some model has written and recorded an album, you think there is nothing good that can come of it - right? Certainly not.

So colour me surprised. Rosie Vela's one and only album, Zazu was a great surprise back in 1986. I had actually never heard or seen of Vela as a model. While I'm gay, I wasn't that kind of fag.

The disk was headed by Steely Dan producer, Gary Katz. Not only that, but the two main members of Steely Dan appear on most, if not every song - their first time in over a decade of being together. This was not a plus for me, as I was never a Steely Dan fan. But it still works. She makes it her own.

Katz uses some great musicians - for those who might know who they are: Rick Derringer, Joy Askew, Jim Keltner, Tony Levin and of course Donald Fagen and Walter Becker. But it really is Vela who ties it together with her writing and her voice.

It's a short disk - only nine songs. I really like "Taxi", "Magic Smile" and especially "2nd Emotion", but they all work.

For a long time, I didn't know what happened to her. She dropped of the face of the music earth. No second disk, not nothing. But last year, I was flipping through the tv and hit some PBS show that was featuring ELO and poof, there she was, doing background vocals. Who knew? And for the life of me - why? It seemed like a demotion to me.

It's hard to sample her record if you were even interested in it. Clearly it wasn't a hit by any standards and it's been 20 odd years, so it is out of print and it's not in iTunes - but I guess that's why they have eBay.

But for a little taste, the only thing I could find was a crappy YouTube video of one of her songs, "Magic Smile". Not the best, but it's all I could do for you guys.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

The Swing of Things


Andrew has invited me to join Twitter. Don't ask me why - but I did.

That last sentence has nothing to do with Andrew, but I'm not sure exactly what I'm supposed to do with it. I'm not sure exactly what anyone is supposed to do with it. It's like live blogging with x amount of characters or less for immediate reading. But that x amount of characters is like 140.

You've seen my posts. I can't keep them to 140 words, let alone characters.

The only thing I knew of it, was a U.S. student was taken into custody in Egypt and his "captors" forgot to confiscate his phone. He Twitter'd (is this now a verb?) a few hundred folks and they did basically a phone tree to others who helped free him and eventually his translator.

I don't expect that I will be in that situation anytime soon. And by 'anytime soon', I mean ever. So now what do I do with it?

Out of my hundred or so email contacts, two (count 'em TWO) are on Twitter. Andrew, and his wife, Rebecca (whom you all know and love). From my BlobbysBlog account, I snagged an entire three more contacts. Hardly enough for anyone to rally to get me out of captivity. ...but they can probably alert me to the next Annie Lennox cd release! Handy.

And to add insult to injury, I can't even use "Blobby" as my name. It's taken!!! The nerve.

Armed with no other clever names or ideas, I actually had to resort to using my real one! I'm not sure how down I am with that.

So not to feel like an old fuddy-duddy (yes, I know I already am), blogging delayed aging by a few years. Twitter has taken me back a few more. Now Becky wants me to join FaceBook. That should put me at the ripe old age of 13 or as a prime candidate to be on NBC's To Catch a Predator.




Song by: a-ha (yes, you read that correctly!)

Saturday, August 09, 2008

No New Title

From my post yesterday, well of course there was a way for you to see me bobble and the background music.

I haven't found a way to do it ON the blog, but I can get you a link to see it.

Here you go!

Don't forget to turn up the volume.

Friday, August 08, 2008

Site of the Month

I thought I'd get this post out of the way early. And I get to give Rebecca props for a second day in a row. She provided me my Site of the Month: BobbleBlobby.

...well, the name was mine. The site was hers. Probably because I think she is the only person I know who actually has satellite radio.

The blog world doesn't allow me to do it as a .gif where you'd actually see my head bounce up and down. That was not a sex joke. I don't joke about sex. It's allllllll very serious.

Actually, I'm sure if I were much more tech savvy, I could find a way to make it bobble-heady. It also came with a lounge version of "Take Me Out to the Ball Game". I don't know how to put the audio on here either. I'm not a high-functioning blogger.

But for all of you critics out there of my pictures, I'm kind of / sort of smiling. Kind of. Sort of. I shouldn't be. The Indians are in last place in their division. Last year we were in first. We don't even have a fighting chance, as we are 13 games out.

All of you can make your own BobbleHead You by clicking here. You can also pick your own baseball jersey. Since I'm assuming most of you are fags non-sports caring gentlemen, just let me know what city you're in and I'll let you know what your team is.

....and believe it or not, there are other positions on the team besides pitcher and catchers.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Shopping with Becca

Becky let me guest blog a few months ago. She gets the same option here - though admittedly it is a lot more low brow than me guesting on her site.

She has provided me a few Sites of the Month material but yesterday she gave me two (count 'em, two!) Shopping with Blobby entries. As much as I'd like to use them as my own, I tried to get her to do a monthly Shopping with Becca section. She wouldn't.

So here she gets all the credit. At least for the pictures.


So many things are funny with this one. Let's start off that his name is Beaver Felton.

I was at work dying!!!!

There are five of us, for years, who have maintained a list of names we come across that are funny, weird, or both (Peter Cheese, anyone? anyone?). I'm not sure Beaver makes the list, I'll leave it up to the others. My first reaction was 'yes', but now, I'm thinking not.

I love the title: Basic Bassics. And Beaver is the best bass guitarist (arguably) today. Tomorrow is another story completely.


My initial reaction was "Take a Wipe on the Wild Side".

Oh c'mon - you all know I'm perpetually 12.

For the life of us, neither Becky or I could come up with anything to parody "Femme Fatale" or "Sweet Jane".

I might have to do Shopping with Special Guests, if people want to submit things to me. ....and I find them funny, of course.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Free Man in Paris

Ok, I hope you know I'm not a fan of Paris Hilton, but props to her for doing this video for Funny or Die (Will Ferrell's little site, where most of his stuff isn't funny).

It is a response to the ad McCain has been running that briefly briefly briefly features Hilton and Britney Spears. I'm sure you've all heard about that one. The media picked up on that ad immediately, but it's not showing in every state, just a select few - like Ohio.



I hate to even say this, but she delivers her lines fairly well. Either is not as stupid as she is always portrayed, or this is the 13,593rd take. Or just a really really really good editing job.



Song by: Joni Mitchell

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Polaroids

Here is the First Colony Guesthouse from the beach side

Here is the pool. Don't let the flags fool you. Not gay ones. It is Roy G Biv x 2. Every beach store on the island had them. Festive, yes, but gay? No.

We'd just do laps there and maybe cool off if we didn't feel like walking to the beach.

Another sundown shot.

I kind of / sort of found this funny. I'll just assume he/she is a dentist.

Required? I don't own flip-flops, so I couldn't got into the chat.

It was the bumper sticker that made me laugh. This was taken while stuck on I-95.

One new picture of me.

Taco Bell will ask me something Denton never has! {sigh}



Song by: Shawn Colvin

Monday, August 04, 2008

Sundown

I think I have one or two more vacation posts in me, including this one, even though the leisure travel is over.

The time is exactly what it was supposed to be: relaxing.

We did one "major" thing every day: lighthouse, dunes, Wright Brothers, Duck, etc - and then it was just walking on the beach. Being that neither of us are ones to "lay out" - our sun came from the strolls up and down the coastline, usually 5-8 miles per day. And not tons of tan to show for it - but that's what happens when you use 30-55 SPF. We have some colour, but we're not George Hamilton brown.

On our walks, when we'd get to the place we wanted to turn around, usually we were a bit warm, so a dive into the ocean was necessary. It was a tad chilly too, but nice. Only the first two days had any waves to speak of, other than that, we both commented on how calm the surf was.

But oy, two days before we left, the mosquitoes came out. I never saw them, but I have about 40 bites all over my arms, lets and feet to show for it and prove they existed. And ITCHY!!!! I don't think I ever have been bitten that badly.

Denton got off a lot easier. For a night I wondered if we had bed bugs or something, but then the wife of our cute Cute CUTE downstairs neighbor asked if we had gotten bit badly - so I knew it wasn't any creepy crawly things in the sheets. Hopefully.

Temps were in the mid to upper 90s the entire time. Two nights we were treated to a great lightning show but minimal rain. By morning, you'd never know there was any.

The trip home, however, was no fun. None. If Denton thought I grumbled and groused on the way down, going back was much worse. First, we barely made it off the Outer Banks before we blew a tire. And I do mean blew it - a huge chunk of rubber missing. But with two of us, we had that spare changed and on the road in 15 minutes, tops. Most of it was having to unload the trunk and reload it. That puppy was hot too....the rubber....the lug nuts. Ouchy.

Then there was the traffic. Horrible planning having 3-4 lanes of traffic all of the sudden go down to two. The reported "accidents" stopping three lanes of traffic - but then getting to the site where the radio said it was - nothing. Not a piece of glass, not a scrap of metal. Nothing. I wanted to see blood, guts, burned corpses - the likes of which one can only normally see on CSI. An 11 hour trip took 15.5 hours. Blobby was quite the crank.

But I am proud of myself. I know I'll pay for it in the end, but I never once logged on to my work email. I'm sure I have 500+ messages, but there is nothing I can do about it now (being I'm drafting this at 9p on Sunday night). I guess I could log on now, but I'd just ruin the last 10 days. At this point it can wait another day.

I think the only other thing of note to happen was the call from our alarm company. We will assume that Sophie set it off......again. This makes three times.

Denton got a call on his cell phone at 3:14 pm, but we didn't have his phone with us. They called me at 4:19 pm. WTF? Waiting an hour to call the secondary contact???

We had the cat sitter go over and take a look, but nothing was broken into or damaged, hence our assumption it was Sophie up to no good. That Darn Cat!

If you care - I did take the picture of the posted image. I figured other images I will post tomorrow and that will be my last vacation entry. We did decide we cannot wait and do this every three years - and that we will have to make a concerted effort to take time off.




Song by: Gordon Lightfoot

Friday, August 01, 2008

Sand & Water



....ok, maybe no water. There is - just over a ridge there. It is the Sound - but I didn't get it in these pictures. I did get pictures of it, but they have Denton and myself in it.

I told Denton a day or so ago, I'm likening him to a sitcom housewife that is discussed but never seen. Norm on 'Cheers' comes to mind - as does Maris on 'Fraiser'. Though with the latter, everyone assume Niles was gay and his wife was just a figment.

He is real, but this is my blog and I wouldn't dare put upon him to include him in anything but names and anecdotes.

Yesterday morning, we climbed some huge-ass sand dune. I know it has a name, but it escapes me. And while the majority of folks go in the evening to see the sun set, it is g-d awful hot at that time. The night before it was 97 degrees, up there it was well over 110. And the sand is 30 degrees hotter that time of day.

No my friends, we climbed it at 7:30a. Shoes off. Too hard to climb in sandals.

It was pretty. There were a few hangliders - and I think at another time that would be something very fun to do. It is also the place to fly kites, as the winds up there are pretty strong. But when it comes to kites, I'm more of a Charlie Brown.

I should have taken more pictures or stayed longer. But it was early. We had had no breakfast and good g-d almighty, he hadn't had any coffee!!



Song by: Beth Neilsen Chapman