09/30/04 -The Dark Ages?

I've been thinking about this lots lately. It's been ten years since I first got e-mail - way back in the fall of 1994 at college. My folks signed up for AOL shortly thereafter, and it's been internet superhighway ever since.

The sad thing is I really don't remember life before e-mail, or, subsequently, the world wide web. Every question I have, from movie title to song lyrics, to actual research, I answer on the internet. It's where I get my news, sports and weather. It's where I write my silly rants!

But you just know that my kids, and my kids' kids are going to ask me what life was like before the internet. I'm going to have to make something up! Any ideas?

09/29/04 -NBC should know better

The best part of Scrubs following Father of the Pride on NBC Tuesday nights is that Father of the Pride is so tremendously unfunny that Scrubs seems extra brilliant in comparison.

09/26/04 -Rally Monkeys all around

I love baseball. And the end of September is the best time to watch it. Of course, it always helps when the Red Sox aren't completely eliminated from the playoffs (thank you Wildcard!) But then again, if they are eliminated early, you can always root for the team playing the Yankees. (You know the old saying, "My two favorite teams are the Red Sox and whoever is playing the Yankees!")

Yesterday was a great baseball day. The Sox beat the Yankees, so they're technically, mathematically still in contention to be the American League East Champions. If not, they'll be the Wildcard. Phew.

Then across the country in the OC the Angels were doing their thing. By the way, don't you bet that if they were renaming the team this year instead of back in 1996 they'd be The OC Angels? Like when they tried to rename John Wayne back in June? (John Wayne Airport, silly. John Wayne the man is already known as PhilipMorris USA's Marlboro Cigarettes present Western Legend John Wayne).

Anyway, the Angels beat up on the A's, who are currently the leader in the AL West. So that would be cool if Anaheim could take the division.

Oh, yeah, then there's the National League. Some games were played. Some pitchers struck out while at bat, or perhaps were replaced by pinch hitters, hitters designated by the manager. You could almost call them designated pinch hitters.

No, no. That would be silly.

Silly like the OC Angels ...

09/23/04 - Super Size No More

I've gotten a lot of guff for liking McDonalds. At my last job a bunch of us used to go every Wednesday. It was kind of a little tradition. People I hardlly knew at work saw me at 11:50 am on Wednesday frothing like a junkie outside a methadone clinic and said, "Looking forward to McDonalds, eh junkie loser?"

(There were some real assholes at work.)

Anyway, after I moved home, I kind of stopped going. Well, I dragged Daniel out there two or three times. Once for his birthday. Yeah, I've always treated the special folks in my life good.)

Now, with my new job in Portland, I'm closer than ever to McDonalds. (Okay, not "closer than ever", cause I could have walked to the one in Burbank. But closer than I have been in three months ...) And yesterday I had to make my first errand run for work. Around lunchtime. To the mall. Close to McDonalds.


Now, Ronald messed around his menu some over the summer, in fact, he doesn't even post that he sells a meal deal with two cheeseburgers. That's odd. And of course McDonalds stopped advertising the "Super Size" meals after the movie of similar name. But they still sold them if you asked. (Kinda like cigarettes at Disneyland or crack at most high schools).

Well, McDonalds still sold Super Sized meals, until yesterday.

I asked, and they said they no longer offered that size.

I was bummed. Yeah, nobody needs a literacola, that's a bit much, but all them fries ... mmmm. I almost ordered a small fry with my large fry, and probably would have, if the chubby guy taking my order hadn't given me such a stern look after I inquired about the Super Size.

Of course now that I know, next time I'll be all set ...

I just hope we have another errand at work next Wednesday ...

09/23/04 - Sorry so slow

Sorry that I haven't upodated in a few days. This is my first week at the new job, and I've been pretty wiped out after work. That, and the two-and-a-half-hours I spend on the road each day. Whoo-doggie.

I promise in the future I'll write a bunch of funny shit over the weekend, and dole it out to you in little nuggets during the week. Let's call them Fun Nuggets. Look for them soon!

09/19/04 - I mean, it's not like it's brain surgery... oh, wait ...

I've tried not to bitch about it, but my back has been pretty screwed up for the past month and a half. Kind of like back in April, when I was on vacation and couldn't walk straight. I've got some type of muscle spasm in my low back, on the left hand side, that's throwing me all out of whack.

Luckily it started up again the week before my high school reunion, because my buddy who was coming up for it is a chiropractor. He adjusted me, back pain be gone. But then my sciatic nerve in my - well - buttock, started hurting like the dickens. And my leg went numb.

So I went to this naturopathic doctor here in town. She gave me vitamin B12 shots and pills, and, lo-and-behold, the pain in my ass went away.

But my foot and leg were still numb.

She sent me to this other doctor who really didn't do a whole lot for me.

And my foot and leg were still numb.

Then she sent me to a ... water therapist? Hydro-therapist? One who does physical therapy in the water. And, in chatting with her, I told her about my foot and leg being numb. She grew concerned. "Try this," she said. She covered my numb big toe with her hand and told me to push up. I couldn't do it. She grew even more concerned. She called in my other doctor, who was also concerned.

Then they mentioned seeing a specialist. What kind of specialist? Well, a neurosurgeon. A Goddamned brain surgeon.

Somehow, I don't like where this is going ...

09/18/04 - End of the White Chocolate Summer

I didn't know going in, but the summer of 2004 shall forever more be known as The White Chocolate Summer. And, being that I'm down with white chocolate, I was a happy camper. Then again, you know this, from my rants and raves about Zero and Hershey's White Chocolate with Almonds and White Chocolate Almond Joy - Pina Colada.

Sadly, White Chocolate with Almonds and the Pina Colada Almond Joy have long since disappeared from our local grocer's shelves. And then last night I went to our local Rite Aid, and they were out of my last remaining candy Kit Kat - Limited Edition White Chocolate.

So that's it. The sun grows long in the sky, the campers from New York and Massachussetts have packed up their kayaks, and the White Chocolate is gone.

09/17/04 - Big Weekend For the Sox

This weekend -- tonight -- the Boston Red Sox travel to arch-rival New York for a three game series against the Yankees. They should be good games.

It doesn't really matter, though, even if Boston beats New York for the American League East, they'll still be the Wild Card. The real race is next weekend when Oakland goes to Anaheim, those two are neck-in-neck for the AL West.

In other news, did you see the latest headline, Red Sox plan to add 2,000 seats in Fenway Park? Doesn't really get into the details, such as where or when, but hey, it's better than ripping down the park.

09/16/04 - Today's Fun Fact

Spam accounts for up to 83 percent of all Internet traffic.

09/15/04 - Celebrate!

Crazy story. I started Monday unemployed. By three o'clock in the afternoon I had a job! Break out the special bottle I've been saving for the occasion!

Yup, I'm serious. When we were driving across the country in June/July I bought a 20 oz of Pibb Xtra for when I got a job. I think it was the morning of July 4th in Ohio. We stopped at a rest stop that sold my favorite soda. I bought two, one for then and one for later.

The job is at at promotional events / marketing place in Portland. I went in for a 9 am interview on Monday, they called me at 3 pm and made me an offer. I start on the 20th. Crazy story.

09/15/04 -Back to the story.

(or "The continuing adventures of my supermarket evacuation experience".)

On Monday I went back into the Shaw's Supermarket that I was evacuated from last week. (Side note, I'm now correct in calling it 'Shaw's" and not "Shaws". I was still stuck in my Southern California mindset where it's "Ralphs" and not "Ralph's".)

Yeah, I know I went to the other Shaw's in North Conway on Friday, but, as I said, they didn't have the onion rolls that I picked up but didn't get a chance to purchase. So, as I was driving through Windham on my way home from the interview, I stopped in, got some Mountain Dew Pitch Black and onion rolls. I randomly picked a checkout line, and who should be working it, but the young woman who was there Thursday!!

She looked up and said, "Oh no, not you!"

I had to laugh.

She said on Thursday the store didn't re-open until 7 pm, and I was there at 3 pm! They had to check every aisle for the bomb, which I guess didn't exist. She didn't say that they found anything, and she seemed talkative enough that if they did she would have told me.

Too bad she wasn't that cute. Oh well.

09/12/04 - Voyeur.

So my brother just finished reading Andy Warhol's diary. (Yeah, we stole it last week on a panty raid into his and Basquiat's dorm room.)

No, it's a big published book. But he seriously read it. As reference for this project he's thinking about. Anyway, every once and awhile he'll tell me some crazy-ass thing Warhol is talking about that day. Sometime's it's very catty stuff, sometimes mundane, sometimes one of those "ran into this nutjob on the streets of New York today" things.

It reminds me of a pre-web weblog.

See lately I've been reading this dude Mike Toole's weblog. Mike is a friend of my friend Mike. Wait, that's confusing. Let's call them by their last names. Toole is a friend of my friend Ochs. There. Much better.

Anyway, I've taken to reading Mike-- Toole's -- weblog this summer. He's got a very similar sense of humor as Ochs, and he writes much more frequently. But it's a little odd, as I've never met the dude and honestly wouldn't know him if he hit me over the head in the mall parking lot where I might just be chillin' out eating a taco some day. Sometimes I feel weird reading his ramblings, like I'm a voyeur. I mean, at least Warhol's diary is published and official.

And then I found this weblog. This is seriously the funniest thing I've seen this year. I don't know if it's real or not, I mean, I'd like to think that it is, but even if it isn't it's funny and clever. You should totally check it out.

09/12/04 - So Glad I Left.

"Lookit me! I cun polke th staaahs!"

09/11/04 - The Plot Thickens ...

Last night I was telling some friends about my supermarket evacuation experience on Thursday. One of the women says, "You mean Wednesday, right?" I think for a minute, because unemployment makes everything kind of meld together. But no, it was Thursday.

She gets a weird look on her face.

"The same thing happened to me at the Shaws in Windham... on Wednesday. They said it was a bomb threat."

Back to back evacuations? Back to back bomb threats? Man, someone at Shaws pissed off the wrong person.

Anyway, I ended up driving to the North Conway Shaws yesterday. It was lame, though, I don't know if it's because it's in New Hampshire or what, but they have different deals. Kraft Barbeque Sauce was not on sale. They didn't have the onion rolls that I picked out on Thursday. They don't sell Molson Canadian Light. They don't sell cans of Mountain Dew Pitch Black. It was rough.

But I didn't get evacuated, so I guess that is good.

09/10/04 - Thursday Night's A Good Night for Football!

Phew. The Patriots won. I mean, not that I'm doubting them, but for a minute there ... well, I was doubting them.

The thing that got me the most is the game started so late! I'm used to West Coast time! Last year a couple of us did Monday Night Football over at the Burbank Bar and Grill. But in California the game starts at 6 pm. So I would be back home by 9, maybe 9:30 at the latest! This starting at 9 pm is going to take some getting used to!

09/09/04 - Have You Ever Been Evacuated From a Supermarket?

This afternoon I went shopping to the Shaw in Windham. I was in a great mood, so I got all sorts of great food. Mountain Dew Pitch Black, Molson Canadian Light, Kraft Barbeque Sauce, Chicken breasts, really good looking turkey from the deli, all sorts of great food.

As I was checking out, a really stern voice came over the PA, "Attention Shaws Customers and Employees. Please evacuate the store immediately. Leave your carts in the asiles and make your way to the nearest exit."

I mean, I was already checking out. If it had been three minutes later, I already would have been in the car.

So we go outside, just in time to see a Windham squad car barrel into the parking lot. And then a fire truck right behind him. A few of us mill around, until they say, "It'll be a half an hour before you can go back in."

I went across the plaza to the Comic Book store for a little bit.

When I came back, twenty minutes later, they were telling us it would be "a few hours".

So I left. I left without my Mountain Dew Pitch Black, Molson Canadian Light, Kraft Barbeque Sauce, Chicken breasts and really good looking turkey from the deli.

I might go grocery shopping tomorrow. Maybe the Shaws in North Conway ...

09/08/04 - Irony

Yesterday I registed at a temp agency in Portland. I know it's stupid to feel like a failure for having to do so, but I did. It didn't help that when I got there the lady managing the office was kind of a bitch. The whole process made me feel pretty low on the employment totem pole. I have a college degree, dammit! But then again, it is in film.

Anyway, I almost laughed out loud at the bitchy office manager at the temp agency. She was digging through a stack of paper on her desk, she couldn't find any of the forms for me. I guess she had taken a long long weekend for Labor Day, because at one point, she said with pointed contempt in her voice, "I can't find anything today. We had a temp in here on Friday!"

She was talking smack about temps, to a man signing up to be a temp, in an office solely dedicated to staffing temps.

09/07/04 - post-Frances

So after talking about the whole Mayan thing the other day I was reminded of this cool etymology I read recently. The English word hurricane comes from the Spanish word huracan, which originated from Hurakan, a god of the Quiche Maya.

Hurakan, the Mayan's one-legged god of lightning, ended the previous age with the Great Flood. Some people like to think that this and Noah's Deluge from the Bible are the same. How about that? That'd be cool.

Anyway, that's how the name came about. Oh, and lots of people think Hurakan will come back in eight years when the Mayan Long Count calendar comes to an end on December 21st, 2012. But I've got near a decade to talk about that.

09/05/04 - AVP

Last night we went to the local Drive-In movie to see the best double-feature of the summer, Dodgeball and Alien Vs. Predator. It was actually a triple-feature, but we skipped most of the first movie, Shrek 2. Dear-crap that was horrible.

But back to Dodgeball. When I first saw it in LA we wondered how many people get hit in the crotch. I counted this time. It's actually only eight times. Somehow it feels like a whole lot more. But each time is still funny.

Then on to AVP. It's a pretty awesome movie - exactly what you're looking for when it comes to Aliens and Predators wailing on each other. But I had a few problems with it.

First, the Predators are pretty huge in this. The other movies they're tall but skinny. In this they're like freakin' football players. I don't really see why. The aliens are pretty slender, so it's not a size-differential thing. I don't know why they did it.

Second, they roar like lions. Predators don't roar. True, in the other movies they sound a bit like the way the Aliens sound, which is probably the real reason the filmmakers switched it up. But roaring like lions is odd.

Third, the Predator's cloaking effect is very computery. I like the old way. You know, the prism thing. Sure, it's a little more lo-tech, but that's what I'm used to for my Predator movie.

Lastly, I have a really foolish problem with some of the facts they present. When the Italian archaeologist, Sebastian, opens the sarcophagus with the time lock, he says that it's the Aztec long-count - a space for days, months, and years. Now the Mayan's Long Count calendar is base twenty, for the most part. There are days, kin; twenty kin are known as a uinal; eighteen uinals make a tun (the reason it's eighteen and not twenty is that a tun ends up to 360 days, close to a calendar year, also known as a Haab); anyway, twenty tuns are known as a katun, twenty katuns make a baktun. Thus a baktun is 144,000 days, which is 394 1/2 days. Quite a long way to count time.

But obviously, although there are days, months and years in this system, the Mayan Calendar does not correspond to our Gregorian Calendar. And thus Sebastian would have a problem entering in October 10, 2004 into the time lock.

So that's the Mayan Calendar. It's all for naught, though, as "the Aztec calendar is derived from the Maya but excludes the long count".

There is no such thing as the Aztec long count, which Sebastian was using.

Yeah, he also said that the calendar was metric based, whatever that means. It's base twenty, not base ten, if that's what he meant. Either way none of the 'temple changing every ten minutes' thing makes any logical sense.

Still, as a movie, pretty kick-ass.

09/04/04 - Conundrum

Can an unemployed person, such as myself, celebrate Labor Day? I mean, isn't it the "workingman's holiday"?

It's a national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity and well-being of our country. A creation of the labor movement, for God's sake! I'm not in the labor movement right now! And for the past two months I really haven't made any contributions to the strength, prosperity or well-being of our country, either!


I guess Monday will really just be "September 6th" for me. No cookout. No party.

But you know, all summer long I still bought stuff. And since consumer spending accounts for a good part of the country's economic activity, I'm still a vital part of the labor movement. So I think I'm okay.

Plus I just love a cookout ...

09/02/04 - Two new Dews!

The other day Daniel and I headed out to Windham, to our local Taco Bell. And I was excited. Yes, excited to go to Taco Bell.

As my friend Tim would say, "write this date down!" (He did, in fact, write down the date back in March when I actually suggested that we go to Taco Bell for lunch. It was that out of character for me.)

Why was I excited for Taco Bell? Why, to try the new Mountain Dew Baja Blast. Have you seen the ads? Mountain Dew, a/k/a Pepsico, has invented a whole new flavor of the Dew exclusively for Taco Bell. You can't get it at stores or at other Pepsi locations.

I guess two-thirds of Taco Bell's business is drive-thru, and most people don't buy a drink if they're taking their Gordita or Chalupa home with them. Heck, the only time I ate Taco Bell regularly was with my last girlfriend. We'd drive to the ghetto Taco Bell in North Hollywood (right around the corner from Ghetto Target, which is right next to the only CVS in SoCal). Anyway, we'd never buy sodas when we went there.

So back to my brother and I in Windham. Sadly, the Taco Bell there is a combo KFC / Taco Bell, and they don't have Baja Blast. Damn! Unfortunately this has got me wondering if the Taco Bell at the Maine Mall food court will even have it. If not, well, Taco Bells aren't really big around here. Looks like I'll be travelling to New Hampshire or Boston for Baja Blast.

The good thing if I go to Boston? I can get Baja Fresh at Faneuil Hall. Think about that - Baja Fresh and Baja Blast!

The other new Dew is Mountain Dew Pitch Black. It is in stores, but only for ten weeks. As a consolation prize the other day, Daniel and I picked up a 12 pack of Pitch Black. It's kind of a grape soda meets Dew. Not bad, really. But I'd still rather have Mountain Dew Diet Code Red that they just don't sell in Maine. Damn.

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