Tuesday, December 11, 2012

NYC Subway Photographer...

Last week a man was struck by a subway train and killed in New York city. The victim, Ki Suk Han of Queens, was pushed onto the tracks moments before the subway struck and killed him. According to eye witness reports there was very little time between when Han was pushed on to the tracks, and when the train arrived. Twenty two seconds is the estimated amount of time between the two events.

In the twenty-two seconds Han frantically struggled to escape no other witnesses attempted to help him. No one offered assistance. No one reach out their hand or coat for him to grab a hold and pull up. In this time of year when giving is better than receiving, no one bothered to give to Mr. Han. In fact, no one seemed to care at all. Except for one man, R. Umar Abbsi.

You see, Mr. Abbsi is a freelance photographer who works for the New York Post, and was in the subway that day waiting on the very train that took Mr. Han's life. According to Abbsi, out of the corner of his eye he saw Han fall onto the tracks and began racing toward him, all the while snapping pictures of the tragedy.

One of those pictures landed on the front page of the Post the follow day.

Post freelance photographer R. Umar Abbasi captured the dramatic moments before Ki Suk Han was struck by a downtown Q train

Now I ask you. Is this Photojournalism at it's best? Or just wrong?

Clearly Mr. Abbasi was not charging toward the victim to help him. He's a photographer. His job is to get the shot. That's how he puts food on his table.

We have become a society that wants to see the unthinkable. We like train wrecks, bearded ladies, and dudes with three eyeballs. We like horror flicks; seeing someone saw off their own leg, and deep down we want to lift the sheet up and peak at what's underneath. So is he just giving us what we want? Is he just doing his job?

Was this guy merly running towards an accident to help and happened to take pictures, or was he taking pictures as he ran toward the accident in hopes of getting the ultimate shot?

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

No Thanks....

I know everybody in the free world is talking how thankful they are for this or that this time of year, but truth be told, I'm not a big fan of Thanksgiving. To me it's a bit of a waste of a holiday. Here's why.

First of all, the house is always 100 degrees. No matter where you are, or who's house you're in. It's always 100. Grandma and Grandpa like it warm, somebody has been cooking all day, you're wearing an itchy sweater. It's 100 degrees, period.

You sit in uncomfortable chairs you don't normally sit in, no lounging around in your sweat pants on the couch all day. You have to sit up and be pleasant. You eat yourself into a food coma. Everybody brings something you like, so you have to eat it. And lets face it, none of it, besides maybe the turkey, is good for you. Think about all those carbs. The noddles, the stuffing, the mac and cheese. You've got yams, yeast rolls and tons and tons of deserts. And if one meal wasn't enough, you know you're going around that table a couple of times. Which in the end, equates to being miserable.

So with all that being said, let me present the Guy's guide to the Top 5 Holiday's

5. New Years Eve/New Years Day: I know it's two days but it's hard to separate the two. You get cocktails and great college football games.

4. Father's Day: It's like the only time of the year where for 3 or 4 hours your kids pretend to like you. So while it's not high on most peoples list of great holidays, for me it's top five.

3. Labor Day: Kids go back to school. Which means we stop "laboring" over the kids.

2. Fourth of July: Cocktails, grilling out my favorite foods. Blowing up stuff. Beach/Pool and relaxation.

1. St. Patrick's Day: People are generally in a good mood, and you've got March Madness. College basketball and green beer, what could be better for a guy.

So there you have it.
Enjoy your itchy sweater.
This post was actually a rant by one of my favoite sports talk radio host, Colin Cowherd from ESPN. I thought it was spot on.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

We're Moving...

I'm moving to Colorado...
By now I'm sure everybody has heard that on Tuesday Colorado passed Amendment 64 which legalizes the recreational use of marijuana. Ok I'm not really moving to Colorado, nor do I have any desire to move there so that I can legally get baked. But whether you support the legalization of marijuana or not this is something we must take notice of.
It's true Amendment 64 passed, and it is now legal for anyone over the age of 21 to smoke pot, however Federal Law still prohibits such use, so there will still be some battles between the federal government and state governments in the very near future. I'm not a pot smoker myself, personally I think it makes you dumb, after all there's a reason Spicoli wasn't a straight A student, but hey, smoke em if you got em.
Sure you'll have to be 21 to purchase marijuana just as with alcohol, but what the local, and federal government for that matter, have failed to understand is that the legalization of marijuana will initially be like Lennie from the book, Of Mice and Men. Remember Lennie? He had a new toy, a puppy. Something he loved with all his big dumb heart. In fact he loved it so much he ended up killing it. Why? Because he didn't know how to handle it. And that's exactly the way the American people will be with weed. We'll be a bunch of big dumb Lennie's. We'll get this new toy and not know how to handle it. Oh sure all you Phish followers out there will be cool, but what about the rest of us?
We haven't had any education. No real guidelines have been set. Say I go home after work, smoke a dubie then get drug tested the next morning. Will I pass? Will I lose my job? Isn't it the same as going home and having a beer? And what about driving a car? There's no testing, that I know of, such as a field sobriety test that determines if someone is high or not. Because of today's drinking and driving laws most folks know not to get behind the wheel after they've had a few drinks. We know the dangers. Getting caught, losing our license, killing people. We know this. So we don't do it. But think about how long it has taken us to figure this out. Prohibition ended in 1933. I can remember when I was young, my uncle drinking a beer while he was driving, and it wasn't any big deal. Or at least society didn't think so. Even though the affects of the alcohol were the same then as they are now. So will the legalization of weed be different?  Or is this one of those, let's just get it legal and we'll figure out the details as we go along.
Oh sure, I hear ya out there. But weed is a gateway drug! It will lead to coke or heroin. The next generation of our youth will be a bunch of Anthony Kiedis' living under a bridge. No, actually caffeine, tobacco, and alcohol are the gateway drugs. Grade schoolers drink soda. Middle school kids drink energy drinks like Red Bull and Monster. We sneak behind the garage and fire up a pack of smokes we stole from the Ol' Man when we're 12 and 13. Or we down our first beer at 14/15. Truth be told, most kids don't smoke pot until they're in high school or college. By that time our bodies have already experienced gateway drugs.
Honestly, for me, I'm all for legalizing pot. Not that I'm protesting on the steps outside to courthouse  for my state to legalize it, but why not? I know people bring up the argument, do you want your surgeon getting high before he cuts you open? Well no, of course not. I don't want him drunk, taking pain pills or sniffin' glue either, but he could. I guess that's the faith we put in our doctors. I'm sure there's going to be some cases where people make bad decisions directly related to getting high. I didn't want some Exxon Mobil Captain getting drunk and spilling tons and tons of oil in our oceans either but I don't think we should ban Goose and Juice because of it. 
As with every hot button debate, there are pros and cons, and the legalization of Mary Jane is no exception.
So tell me Lifers, what do you think? Are you for or against legalizing the bud?

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Conquering the Mountain...

In the 1986 classic movie Stand by Me, there is a scene where one of the boys gets caught in a junk yard and narrowly escapes an attack by the feared junk yard dog. In the movie the junk yard owner calls out to the dog, Chopper sic'em, but the boy, his mind clouded by fear, hears the owner say Chopper sic balls. Sometimes we let our fears control our minds.
I was a ten year old boy when my fear controlled my mind. So much so that the events of that day remained with me for the next 25 or so years. I was at Disney World in Orlando Florida standing in line to ride the roller coaster, Space Mountain. It's a coaster that is inside a large building, and Disney does a wonderful job of creating a Space atmosphere on this ride. It's pitch black inside, you can not see the track in front of you, and you have no real idea where the curves and hills are coming from. And it has haunted me for nearly all my life.
As a young boy, standing there, I knew I would hate it. I was petrified. But I heard my dad say, Oh don't be a sissy. It won't be that bad. Now maybe my dad said something like it's ok if you don't want to ride it, it's no big deal. But just like the boy in the junk yard, my mind heard something completely different. So I had to ride it.

I screamed the entire time. I may have even cried. I held on for dear life. I just knew that with each turn and hill I was going to fall out of my car and plummet to my death. I could hear my father as the police investigated my lifeless body below the tracks. At least he didn't chicken out.

A few minutes later it was over, and I was spent. Yes I had made it. I didn't die, like I thought I would, but I also didn't feel better for riding it. I didn't feel like I accomplished anything, or that I was brave because I rode it. I hated it. It was five minutes of pure hell. A hell that stuck with me for a long time. I didn't ride roller coasters or much of anything else after that experience. I was truly traumatized.

Last Saturday, now a grown man, I stood in that same line, and relived those memories. Once again I had that nervous feeling inside my stomach. I was standing just a few feet away from the very thing that had started it all. And once again, I had to ride it.

It was still just as dark as I remembered and the hills and curves were still just as surprising as when I was ten. The bar that strapped me in felt more snug and I didn't bounce around on this night like I did those many years ago. I looked around more and noticed more of the Space atmosphere this time around as opposed to closing my eyes and putting my head down. I remembered my dad and the memories of that vacation from when I was young. Finally, it was over, much sooner than I remembered. And this time, I actually felt like I had accomplished something. And I didn't cry nearly as much.

Friday, October 26, 2012

The Giving Tree...

One of the things I've learned over the last few years is to take advantage of the teaching moments with my clowns. There are times throughout the week that provide perfect opportunities for me to truly be a dad. To explain to them how to be strong, brave, polite, kind, and compassionate. Not that I'm not a dad all the other times of the day/week, but those aren't the times they'll remember. It's the teaching moments that make them who they are. That shape them. After all how many times have you said, Dad used to always say. Or my dad taught me, blah, blah, blah. Those are the moments I look forward to. Those are the moments that make waking up at 4 in the morning with a sick clown worth it.

Yesterday, as I pulled into the driveway, my two youngest were outside climbing a tree in the front yard. I watched as my son climbed, swinging from branch to branch with the look of triumph on his little face. He'd made it. Victory was his as he'd fearlessly climbed as high as he possibly could.

A few hours later I revealed to my six year old son how when I was a little boy, I never climbed trees because I was to scared. Afraid to fall.  Without missing a beat he looked up at me and said, well, you can't run from your fears dad. Never give up.


Tuesday, October 2, 2012

How to name your child.....

Ok so you know how they say you should always know a good joke. You know just in case you're asked on the spur of the moment or something? Well somewhere through the years I heard this one and it just stuck with me. While it may not be something I'll repeat in mixed company, it is funny.

One day, a little Indian boy had a question about his name.

Little Indian boy: Dad how do we get our names?

Father: "Well, you see son, when the child is born the father looks out over the horizon and names the young child after the first thing he sees." "For example, I am sitting bull, and your sister, she is running stream. Why do you ask, Two Dogs Fucking"?



Saturday, September 29, 2012

You're to Kind......

There are a lot of good people out there in the world. People who are saving lives, or taking care of the elderly. You know people making a difference in somebody else's life, today. I am not one of those people. That's not to say I don't do my fair share of good deeds. Why just yesterday I made a fresh pot of coffee at the office when the old one was getting low. That's something right? And I most always put the toilet seat down here at the Palace so when the DW sits down she doesn't get her tushy all wet. I'm sure she appreciates that.

But lets face it, my acts of kindness, I mean true-go-out-of-my-way-to-be-kind-to-someone acts of kindness are few and far between. Oh sure I do something nice like get up on my in-laws roof to help repair a leak even though everybody knows I'm terrified of ladders, or help move some furniture from upstairs to downstairs. But again, that's an every now and then kind of thing. Or maybe more to the point, a when I'm asked to kind of thing.

So recently my SIL turned 30 and decided to start a very noble project. She's calling it her 30 Random Acts of Kindness in 30 Days. The idea is she does a random act of kindness each day for the next 30 days. Pretty simple right? Well I don't know about you, but I have a hard time doing anything for 30 days in a row, let alone being nice to people. But she is. She's done things like purchase gift cards for the customer behind her at Starbucks. Passed out gift bags of quarters at the local laundry mat, and sent coupons overseas for soldiers and their families. I love the idea and honestly, wish I'd thought of it first. She posts each days Random Act on Facebook and I gotta say, it keeps me on the edge of my seat waiting to see what she'll do next.

So a huge shout out to today my SIL. You keep doing your Thang, and Thanks for your Kindness...

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Funny and Witty...

Hey Lifers...

So today right before lunch I sent the DW a message asking her if she had any plans for lunch. She said she didn't and mentioned that we had leftovers if I was coming home. I informed her that unless she had something special planned for my lunch hour I'd just go into town and get something....I ate lunch alone. Below is the actual conversation we had later through IM.

Sent at 12:50 PM on Tuesday
Her: what you have for lunch? i'm having one of those steak n shake chilis. surprised that i actually like it.
 me: I had Shitdonalds
 her: yum
me: yep....I blame you
her: why?
me: because you didn't want to do it
 her: what else is new? that's not an excuse to choke down fatty donalds
me: i was depressed
her: i find it depressing that you drowned your sorrows in mcdonalds
hope you at least got a sweet tea
and fresh fries instead of soggy old fries
Sent at 12:56 PM on Tuesday me: I did get a sweet tea. and it is depressing that I have to turn to yucky McDonalds to
get some lovin'
 her: badabopbopbop... you're lovin it.
i'm slightly witty and funny today, right?
me:You see the big cycle of my depression. Now I'm depressed again because I had to turn to McD's...Oh yes your witty and funny...
her:i am. 
me: you get it from me
her: do not
me: yes you do.
I'm witty and funny all the time, some has to rub off on you
her: i've turned out 3 galleries since last night. and i'm gonna get another one out in just a few minutes. i'm a machine today!!!
 me: you are the energizer bunny....speaking of bunnies....
 her: omg. you never quit, do you?
 me: never. the day I quit is the day you'll know I'm terminally ill.
 her: i guess
me: so maybe we should go ahead and do it then because I'll be dead soon
omg. i just spit diet coke out.
me: that's because I'm funny...and witty

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

How's about a little Somethin-Somethin...

OK so as you know I started a new job last month right? So far I'm enjoying the increase in pay, the hours, and the fact that it's in my own town. It's only about twelve minutes away from my house which is awesome. I've met the wife in town for lunch a few times already. I can run errands in town and know where places are, and It's even close enough that I can come home for lunch. And now that all three clowns are in school, it's just the DW and I for these lunch dates. It's been a bonus that I didn't consider before taking the position.

But here's the thing. I'm a guy right? And as a guy with no clowns present for lunch, I've put in a request with the DW for..well you know, a little somethin-somethin on my lunch hour.

Now I don't think this is an outrageous request, I mean after all, I really only need a few minutes of her time, and that's with her making me a sandwich. We're married right? I'm a guy, she's a chick, right?

Now at least once a week I make this request only to be shot down without hesitation by my beautiful bride. Now I'm not asking to come home and find Larry Flint ready to put some fantastic story in the Penthouse fourms here. But none the less the answer is still no. But that doesn't stop me from asking, again, I'm a guy.

And who knows, tomorrow's a new day, and just maybe I'll get a little somethin-somethin with that sandwich......


Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Horrible Bosses...

Through the years I've had a lot of different jobs. I've worked in retail, fast food, on a farm and in factories. I've bussed tables, picked up dog poop and mowed lawns for cash. I've been paid by piece, by hour, and by salary. So I've become quite the expert on bosses. More to the point, horrible bosses

I once had a boss who could never remember my name. He was close most of the time. In the beginning I'd correct him and he'd apologize, but wouldn't remember. After a while I stopped correcting him. I mean why the hell did I care what he called me as long as it was right on my pay stub.

I once had a boss who picked his nose and wipe it around his desk, or just eat it. I'm not making this stuff up people. I liked the guy well enough, and he liked my work, but I never could get past the nose picking/eating thing. I mean what grown man does that? He once handed me back a paper that had boogie on it. I near puked.

I once had a boss who was a gun nut. One Saturday he locked himself in his office with the lights off and a revolver in his hand. Thank goodness he didn't do anything stupid. It would've sucked to have had to work overtime because the boss killed himself. But it did make for an uneasy shift.

I once had a boss who would pick the ear wax from his ear and eat it. Again, not making this up. He would talk to you in normal conversation then nonchalant like dig at his ear. Then pretend to bite his fingernail. Sometimes he'd pull his finger out and look at the wax before biting his nail. Nice.

I once had a boss who drank on the job. He would sometimes come to work tipsy and about half way through the night he would disappear for awhile. An hour or so later he'd appear feeling better and smelling a bit.

So with starting a new job a few weeks ago, I'm sort of looking forward to some new blog material from this one. Stay tuned...


Monday, August 27, 2012

85 and Counting...

So one of my all time favorite bloggers Ducky at batcrapcrazy posted something that made me think. I won't go into her post, so just go check her out. She's funny.

Anyway, she posted a top ten list of sorts, and one of her items was something about not having an attention span long enough to actually finish a post.

Immediately I thought, that's me. You see lately I've sort of neglected the 'ol blog. Well, not completely. I do write. I just don't..well, always finish them. In fact I went back and looked at my dashboard and it turns out that I have 85 draft posts waiting to be finished or published.

Yep, 85.

That's a lot of writing. That's a lotta words just waiting out there in bloggy purgatory. I've got posts about former co-works and conversations had. About dutch ovens and the DW. Hell, I've even got one about the Penis versus the Vaj. Posts about how I have nothing to say, and posts where I can't shut up. Posts about clowns, being Hardcore, and dying.

Now I know what you're thinking, so what gives? Let's see 'em.

You see the problem is I get so caught up in perfection, or the belief that it exists, that I sometimes forget why I started a blog in the first place. It started out just like every other blog, as a platform to express my thoughts and opinions. Somewhere for me to speak my mind, rant or just share. But the problem is, I worry to much about offending people. I worry about traffic and comments. Oh sure we all say we don't, but we do. We want to be liked. We want to be interesting. We want people to read. Isn't that why we tell 'em we have a blog so they'll read it? And I worry about the content. Does it make people laugh, or is it just boring everyday life crap? Will people keep reading if it's offensive?

So you see, this is why I have a post about having crabs that nobody has ever seen. Or why my story about 6 dollars may never see the light of day.  

So that's why I have 85 unfinished posts just sitting there waiting to...

Oh whatever...


Tuesday, August 14, 2012

I Quit...

Every new beginning comes from some other beginning's end~ Semisonic

Last week I quit my job. I didn't exactly just up and quit, I put my two weeks in. I'd been there for the past 5 years, and over that time, I had built good relationships with co-workers. Heck some of them even good friendships. So it was somewhat of a sad day for me on Friday as I didn't particularly want to leave the company. But a month or so ago, another company approached me with an offer I couldn't refuse.

What's Five Years

In the grand scheme of our lives five years is not that long. I've had t-shirts longer. And after all, I've already been in the work force for nearly 20 years and I plan to work 20 or so more, so what's five years? Well, it's a car loan, or the amount of time we take to get through college. It's longer than 6 US Presidents were on the job. They only lasted four years. They say that the average professional only stays at one place for 3~5 years. I continue to be a statistic.

Is Loyalty Dead

A couple weeks ago I was talking with someone about this potential job change, and the subject of loyalty came up. I explained that I'm as loyal as they come. After all, I've watch every Colts game I possible could since they came to my town in '84. Even the lean years before Peyton. And I'm a die hard Notre Dame fan. In fact I'd punch my own mother in the ear if she wore a Michigan or USC shirt. So don't tell me about loyalty. I was taught loyalty at an early early age. After all, my father is a Cubs fan, and hell they haven't won anything since 1969. So I know loyalty.

I don't think that's exactly what he meant though.

So why aren't we more loyal to our company?

Money Money Money

Back in the day people used to work at a company for thirty or forty years. As long as there was work, and money coming in people stayed put no matter what the conditions. But let's face it. Most of us work to make money. If you're one of those few who get to do what you love, then don't ever give it up. But for me, my passions in life are sports, music, and writing. I've given up hope that any of these will ever be my life's work. My bad knees and dunlap belly make it impossible for me to get into the starting line up of any professional team. And my musical knowledge consists of 90's cover tunes on an acoustic guitar. Now once upon a time I did do some sports writing for a local newspaper but quickly found out that there's no money in it.

When the DW and I started having our clowns I decided that I needed to go back to school. Again, this wasn't because I loved school. It was because I could see the writing on the wall. In order for me to be able to provide for my family I'd have to make myself more valuable. And in the work force valuable means more money. And after all that's what it's about. Being able to support and provide for my family.

In The End

Now maybe this won't be the best job I've ever had and maybe in the end it won't even be my last. But it's where I need to be at this point in my life. As for my previous employer, in the end I was asked what it would take to keep me, we all have a number you know? It turns out they had no loyalty to me either. 


Tuesday, August 7, 2012

What would you do...

So the other day the family and I were waiting in a Burger King parking lot for my parents. Anybody else singing the Humpty Dance right about now?

Anyway way, we were planning to meet up with my 'rents so they could just ride with us to dinner. We were a little early so I went inside to use the bathroom. OK now you gotta be singing The Humpty Dance right?

As I was going into the men's room I spotted an older gentleman, maybe late fifties early sixties coming out of the women's restroom. Now if you've never read this story of my uncool moment,  I urge you to go there now and read it. If you've already read it, then you know that sometimes this happens to the best of us. So I wasn't terrible disturbed by the old guy coming out of the wrong bathroom. It was what I heard following that  got me going.

As we crossed paths I heard two voices. Two voices of young girls already in the bathroom. My mind raced. I heard the old man ask if he was in the wrong room, and the girls respond that indeed he was, so I quickly finished my business so I could investigate.

I walked to the dining area where the old man was sitting by himself eating. A young Mexican couple with a baby sat to my left. No other customers, and only a few employees within sight. I wasn't sure what to do, or even if there was something to do. So I head out the door and back to my family. As I walk the ten feet across the parking lot again my thoughts turn to those two girls in the restroom. Maybe it was nothing, but what if...

The fear in my head as I walk tries to convince me that it was nothing. Nothing weird was going on, or was about to go on. Just keep going like you didn't see anything. But the adult in me says you gotta go back and be sure. Damn, being an adult sucks sometimes.

I wasn't sure what I was going to do if something funny had been going on. I'm not an action hero, I don't pack heat like Bruce Willis or Clint Eastwood, and truth be told I get gassy when I'm nervous. But still I walked back into the BK looking for answers.

When I walked inside I did what every calm, cool, collected, gentlemen would do who was about to face off with another man like it was high noon. I grabbed my phone and looked busy.....

OK so I wasn't exactly calling people punks and telling them to make my day, but I was there. I stood there in the front of that restaurant incognito until those two girls walked out of the restroom. I had to make sure that what I saw was in fact just an Uncool Moment and not more.

Well, long story short the girls walked out of the bathroom giggling and acting like two normal 12 year old girls would. They returned to the table where their grandpa was sitting, still laughing and being silly, and I walked out of there more like Barney Fife, than John McClane.


So, tell me Lifers. What would you do? Did I over react? Would you have walked away or stuck around?

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Best Day Ever????

So my middle clown had a birthday yesterday.

Now because her Birthday was on a Monday we decided to have her party on the Saturday before.
Like all good mommies, my DW planned the event. She researched the best venues, she called around and asked for advice. After all, you're only eight once right?

Soon it was settled, we would venture an hour north to a place with go-karts, video games, bumper boats and miniature golf. We'd make a day if it. We'd invite the family and her bff for cake and ice cream, we'd play, race, and open presents, because after all you only get to be eight once right?

The Birthday party came and went and was a great success. My wallet was significantly lighter after the day, but hey, you only get to be eight once right?

So yesterday being the actual day, the DW took her to lunch at The Cracker Barrel, and for dinner she wanted to go to The Golden Corral. Now anybody who knows me knows that I hate the Golden Corral, but hey you only get to be eight once right?

As I was reluctantly chocking down what I'm sure was a day old baked potato, my beautiful little eight year old clown looks over at me with freshly spun cotton candy stuck to her chocolate covered face and mutters the phrase, Best Day Ever.

I nearly spit out my charbroiled fat covered horse steak before asking her to explain.

What? Today is the best day ever? Are you kidding me? You mean to tell me that Cracker Barrel and the Chocolate Wonderfall at Golden Corral trump go-karts, your BFF and birthday presents?

With her mouth full of sweet goodness, all she could do was nod her head.



Thursday, June 28, 2012

Say it like you mean it....@#$%&$#

When I was younger I had what you might call a potty mouth. Now I'm not talking about removing my pacifier to cuss out Mr. Green Jeans or anything....Captin Kangaroo??? Anyone?? Anyone???

Anyway, I'm mostly talking about when life actually starts to go to hell. You know, the teen years.
But now that I'm a parent I'm pretty aware of the things that come out of my mouth. Nothing like having to explain why your clown is calling her first grade classmates douchtards.
But just because I choose not to cuss, most of the time, doesn't mean I can't or don't remember all the good ones.

My DW on the other hand....

See the DW was what I'd consider a sheltered child. And because of this as an adult she has a hard time in the art of profanity. Yes I say art. Some of us can spew dirty language with great gusto you know. Myself, I always find my artistic side while working on vehicles.

Back to my point. The DW.

Now on the very, very rare occasion that she gets so mad that something like this comes out of her mouth, well, plain and simple she doesn't know how to cuss right. Oh sure she knows the words, shit, hell, damn, even the grandaddy of 'em all the big MF. But she doesn't know how to use them together. I think the majority of her problem is timing. Maybe if she had a minute to think she'd be better at the cussword combo. But in the heat if the moment you don't have that kind of time you just gotta let 'er fly, and when she does it turns out more comical then Bad Ass. Not that cussing at the jerk who pulled out in front of you makes you a bad ass but you get my point.


So she knows the words but her combinations just don't go together. It's sort of like eating green beans with spaghetti. You see she says things like damn shit, or mother asshole. Hell damn and shit hell. Its more of a sling shot approach where one word comes at you at a time. Not like us professionals who use the machine gun approach and just rapid fire until we're out of breath.

Now don't get me wrong. I'm glad I'm not married to a gal who makes a sailor blush with the language she uses, but just once it'd be nice if she could get the right combo in the moment.


So tell me are you more of a sling shot cusser or a gangster with a uzi.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

If only the Maid didn't suck...

So around the Palace things can get pretty messy what, with the Ninjas, the DW's business and my overall laziness, items like laundry, dishes, and general housework have a tendency to get put on the back burner or pushed aside. Ok whom I kidding, I just don't feel like doing 'em.

So because of this, and me being the awesome husband I am, I've hired a maid.

Oh I can hear y'all now, must be nice wish I had a maid. Or maybe you're thinking, boy he sure does take care if his lady.

But the thing is the maid actually sucks. I constantly have to go back and put dishes in the correct places or on higher shelves. I have to refold laundry, and I'm pretty sure one night we actually ate off dirty dishes, because the dishwasher wasn't run.

Now I know what your thinking here. The workload is just to much for one person, right? Well I thought about that too, and to compensate I've actually hired three maids for the summer.
Now I must admit, their wages are pretty cheap, but if the whinning doesn't stop I might have to end up firing all three of them.

I'm sure that's exactly what they want.


Monday, June 18, 2012

Happy Birthday to Me...

So today is my birthday, y'all. Happy Birthday to me right?

Now I don't typically get depressed on this day, or overwhelmed or whatever. I just go with the 'ol saying, it is what it is. We all get older and life was meant to be lived right?

But, today I was a little depressed. I had to work and it's Monday, nuff said...... OK that's not the only reason I was a bit depressed.

You see inside I'm a bit of a Happiness Seeker. You know, someone who is always searching for himself. Trying to figure out who I am and what I want to be. I constantly think about new careers, new places to live, new adventures. And it's because of this constant guessing of who am I that brought upon today's depression.  Today I battled with the question, what am I doing with my life? I thought, another year past and still I have no idea. No idea about who I am? Who I want to be? Who I should be?

Then She told me.

I'm a Daddy who keeps the clowns straight. Who cleans up their messes. Who listens to them. Who makes them laugh. Who loves them. I'm a Daddy who takes care of them.

She told me I'm a Husband who anchors her ship. She told me I'm a best friend, and a provider. I'm everything she wants me to be.

She told me all these things by all the things she did, not by all the things she bought. Although those were great too.

So here's to another year older. Now that I know who I am, maybe I'll start searching for something to add to it.

Thank you DW for being such an Awesome DW. I love you.


Wednesday, June 13, 2012


For those of you who may not know, let me just say for the record that I hate summertime.

I know. You're all thinking, how can this be? What's wrong with you?

Now to my clowns this time of year means catching fireflies, swimming in the pool, and staying up late. It's a time for eating smores, sleeping in, and sun kissed cheeks.

But for dad it's totally different.

For me it means wet  floors all over the house, because everybody knows that swimming makes you have to pee every five minutes, and they never have to go just a little bit. They always wait until they're about to pee their pants before they come in. Which means they don't dry off.

It means doors left open and bugs let in. It means more laundry because you can't dry off today with the same towel you used yesterday. And you most certainly can't put the same clothes back on.

Summertime means more money out of dads pocket too. It means buying  more potato chips, cookies, and popcorn. It means more housework because said chips, cookies and popcorn crumbs find their way onto the chair, couch, and floor.

And worst of all, summertime means loss of sleep for 'ol dad. With the addition of daylight savings time it now doesn't get dark until about 9:30. And since my clowns don't have to get up early, that means the DW doesn't have to get up early either. Naturally this means we all should stay up late watching Ant Farm, Jessie, or whatever happens to be on Disney. The problem with this is that only one of us has to get up at five in the morning. Guess who looses that battle.

Soooo, when does school start again???


Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Here Kitty Kitty.....

So when I was a kid we had a dog. She was a little yapper, pain in the ass kind of dog, but she was our dog. And we loved her.

Then one day when I was maybe in the sixth grade, I came home from school and was told that my dad had run over her with the car and he had to take her to the vet, she may not make it.

I cried. I know, not very cool for the boy with the feathered hair, tight rolled pants and stone washed jeans right? Nonetheless, I cried. Now not only did I cry, but I hated my dad for running over her. As if it was his fault. But in my mind it was. After all it's always the parents fault right?

OK so I tell you that story to tell you this one.

We have a cat. He's strictly an indoor cat, but for whatever reason this cat wants to go outside. He's been neutered and still has his claws so aside from bringing crap inside like mice and bugs, there's really no reason why he couldn't go out.

So last Saturday night when the clowns were in bed, the DW came home from the store and needed a hand with the bags. Now me being the awesome hubs I am, I went out and gave her a hand. And while we were bringing the groceries in, the cat got out. She claims it was my fault. I'm going with the cat opened the door and made a break for it. Either way, it was on my watch.

So I went out and tried to get him back inside, but as soon as I'd get close, he'd take off into the field. So naturally I had to do what I had to do. Not because I care about this cat, but because of my dad and our dog. So I got my flashlight put on my shoes and went outside determined to bring back my kid's pet.

After a few attempts and scratches later, I was unsuccessful in bringing him in. I was convinced that he was gone for good, and I would have to explain to my clowns how Cat, that's sort of his name, was now gone and it was my fault.

It turns out that all those many years ago, my dad decided to save the dog. I'm sure it was against his will, but he couldn't have his kids hate him forever for running over their pet. She ended up living for nearly ten more years, and all was good. Last Saturday night around four in the morning Cat came back. I sprung up out of bed and let him back inside, because after all, I couldn't have my clowns hating me for letting their pet run away.

That cat just saved my tail....


Monday, June 4, 2012

Do you let your clowns win?

As you all know I have three clowns, and with that comes challenges, of all kinds.
And lately I've been debating on if I should let my clowns win.

We recently purchased a real adjustable outdoor basketball goal for the clowns. The boy clown loves it and is really pretty good considering his age. While my girls are just out there to have a little fun, the boy is out for blood.

I recently read something that said parents should fill a child up with so much self esteem that the world will never be able to drain them of it.

Here's my problem. My son lacks this self esteem. I'm not sure if this is my fault or not. I'm sure in a few years when he's laying on the couch costing my $120 an hour explaining to some Dr. Phil wanna be, it will surely be my fault.

Back to letting them win.

It's because of his lack of self esteem that I often feel obligated to let him win we play something, particularly basketball. It's turned out to be his favorite sport.
Now I don't mind loosing to the boy at this stage in our lives. I feel like he needs it. He needs me. It does get a little embarrassing when he yells out IS THAT ALL YOU GOT SUGAR PUFF after I miss a shot, but for the most part I feel like this is good for him.

So what's the right thing to do? Should I let him win to help build his self esteem. To help him understand that he can do anything he puts his mind to? Or should I beat him and help him to understand that not everything in life is just handed to us. And if you want to win you have to put the time and effort into it?

What about you? Do you let your clowns win or do you dominate and let them learn the hard way?


Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Well I guess this is growing up...

There's a lyric in a song by Blink 182 that says; Well I guess this is growing up.

I feel like this has been me and my life for the last month. Up until now I've never really felt grown up. Sure I've been able to make grown up decisions, but I'm not talking about being 18 or 21 and the decisions and responsibilities that go along with those ages. No, I'm talking about being A Grown Up.

This month I've seen people close to me in the hospital with heart failure. People lose jobs they've been at for years, and a life long marriage begin to crumble. I've seen babies graduate high school and my own clowns reach age milestones. Life is happening all around me, and I'm not sure I'm prepared.

Watching my clowns grow up reminds me of an easier time. A time when I was younger and things like death, financial burden or divorce didn't happen, or happened to other people anyway. It was kids I went to school with or neighbors my parents told me about, not people that affected me. Maybe it was just easier because these things are grown up issues and I wasn't supposed to know about them? Either way, life was easier then.

I guess I'll just be thankful for what I have, and for the moment because you truly never know what's around the corner.  After all, I guess this is growing up.


Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Workers must wash hands before returning to work...

So the other night we're out celebrating one of the clowns birthday and at one point the boy had to go do the 2. So, just like I do at every restaurant I've ever been to with the boy, I hang out in the bathroom while he drops the boys off at the pool. It's not something I'm proud of, but unfortunately there are a lot of weirdos out there and he's six, wattcha gonna do?

So while I'm standing there stalking you people on facebook on my phone, some douchtard walks in and strikes up a conversation. Nothing major, just simple pleasantries. Which I'm sure he was wondering what I was doing just hanging out in the men's room readin' y'all's status updates about how you're kid's the best, you worked out, or whatev.

Anyway this guy finishes up his business and without washing his hands walks over to the hand dryer and begins using it. He gives his hands a few rubs, says adios and out the door he goes.
Now it took me a few seconds to understand what just happened, and maybe you didn't catch it either. I said this guy finished peeing and went directly to the hand dryer. I'm no Sherlock Holmes but I'm pretty sure he peed on his hands and just dried them off. Heck, I think John Holmes could have figured that one out.  C'mon man really?

So it's bad enough that we had to follow this guy out of the bathroom, but I never really looked up from my phone the whole time, so I'm not 100% sure he didn't work there....Good thing we were on our way out.


Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Pick Your Poison...

The other day I was listening to the radio and the debate was brought up about would you rather be shot, or stabbed? I'm not talking about being shot or stabbed to death. Just in general if you had to take one which would it be?

Keep in mind that I've never been shot, nor stabbed other than by maybe a fork at the dinner table, so my thought process has nothing to do with experience. But:

I gotta belive that with being shot the pain would be quick. It's a quick shot. Bang. Sure it'd hurt like crazy, but the pain would be quick, then I'd think you'd sort of be numb all over.

Stabbing seems more personal to me. It also seems like the pain would be two fold. Pain going in, then maybe a different pain when the blade comes out. I don't think the pain would be all over, maybe just in that area.  

But I gotta say, I think I'd take the Shank.

How about you. If you had to pick one which would you pick. Getting shot, or Getting stabbed?


Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Japan Pictures...

Ok so here are a few pictures I took while on my trip to Japan. I've got lots more, but my computer is slow and takes forever to download these pics. I'll post more soon. I apologize I know some of these suck but what can I say, I'm not the photographer in the family. 
This is some of the food we had on our first night out with out Japanese Members. They call it a Lunchable. There is 4 different fish types in the box. The meat on the right is "beef".....I think
Tokyo at night we were on the other side of the Japan river looking back at the city
This is the raw squid I ate. It was in some sort of marinade. It didn't taste bad, but was like eating a rubber hose.
There were only 6 of the 13 of us that went to Tokyo. This is outside one of the famous Temples there.
They have vending machines all over the place in Japan, and the amazing thing is that they all work. They also dispense hot and cold drinks. Cold drinks on the top and hot coffee and tea on the bottom.

Here is one of the cans of coffee. It actually comes out of the machine hot. On the right is the Tokyo Bridge at Night.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

You Say You Want a Revolution

So if you remember awhile back I posted about my experience at the local McDonald's drive-thru. If you haven't read it go ahead and read it here.

So since that post I've had a few people tell my about their experiences, some similar to mine, others just the opposite. And with each one I continue on my soap box. Preaching about how it's crap that we let McDonald's get away with it. About how we should as a nation, stand up to them. Each and every one of us. Stand up for the little guy who continues to get pushed around not only by McDonald's, but by Corporate America in general. I preach that if we all would refuse to let them treat us this way, eventually we could make a change.

So this morning the DW and I were both off to work. We left the house and went our separate ways. After about fifteen minutes I get a call from her:

Hello my beautiful love, how can I be of assistants to you? Well that's what I might have said had it not been 8 am on Saturday morning.

I didn't do it, she tells me.

Didn't do what?

I didn't pull forward. Enthusiasm in her voice. They asked me to, but I didn't. Aren't you proud of me. I didn't do it. 

Truth of the matter is, I am proud of her. Way to often we let people push us around because we don't want to rock the boat or start something. They get our order wrong, we eat it anyway. They overcharge us, we dismiss it.

Why does it matter

Why does it matter? Maybe that's what you're thinking. Sure you have to pick your battles in this world, and sometimes you have to cut bait and live to fight another day. But as a father I want my clowns to be tough. Not Mike Tyson, street thug, sucker punch you tough. But tough enough to stand up for themselves. To fight for what's right, what's theirs, and what they believe in. To not be pushed around. And as parents, it's our jobs to show them, and to teach them. That's why it matters.

My Contribution

Now while I won't boycott McDonald's altogether, I know I suck, I have taken things a bit further. Today after I got home, I logged onto their website, and began documenting my frustrations with their pull forward policies. I explained my stance. How I feel that if I'm next in line they should put me first. How they should give the all hands on deck approach to the next customer. How they should evaluate why they're not getting the next order out the door in the first place. I was polite and to the point. But more importantly I stood up.

And if that doesn't work.....Maybe we sucker punch somebody.


Thursday, April 19, 2012

Zoo Humor...

So the other day we went to the zoo. We had a great time. Well, as much fun as you can have at a zoo I guess. So anyway, while visiting the elephants my son notices one of the elephants privates parts. Boys can be very curious at this age. So he asks me.

Dad, what is that?

Now because I believe in being honest with my clowns and answering their questions the best way I can, I explained to him that what he was seeing was the Elephants penis.

His reply: Oh, mom said it was nothing.

To which I explained: She's just spoiled.


*** OK, I may or may not have visited the zoo recently***


Sunday, April 15, 2012

Top 10 Things I Missed While in Japan

1. My wife. Obviously. She is my best friend and as the saying goes, she completes me. I kept telling myself, I wish the DW could see this. And I just missed talking to, and being with her.

2. My clowns. Naturally I missed them, but I didn't miss the arguing and fighting that comes with em, and Japan is not a place that they would appreciate. But they're my clowns, and I missed them.

3. My bed. Nothing says home quite like your own bed and pillow.

4. Food. Now I didn't starve in Japan and in fact some of the food was good, but it wasn't my type of food. No juicy steaks, no chips and salsa, no famous DW's Lasagna.

5. Grass. Yes I know for as much as I complain about cutting the grass, this one seems weird, but in Japan there's not much actual grass or landscaping.

6. Space. There are so many people in Japan. Everything, and everyone is so crowed. You're constantly avoiding running into people either on foot or on bikes. The roads, sidewalks, and houses are so narrow and small. Its nice to be back home where I can spread out.

7. Paper towels. Yeah, so in Japan they don't use paper towels in their bathrooms. Or hand dryers for that matter. Most everyone carries around their own hand towel, similar to a handkerchief in size, and that's what they dry their hands on. So for me I had to constantly wave my hands in the air, or wipe them on my pants to get them dry. Very annoying.

8. Baseball. Oh sure they have baseball in Japan, but its not American baseball, and I love the opening weekend of the baseball season, and unfortunately I missed it this year.

9. Mt. Dew and Sweet Tea. I know that's two, but whatever. I couldn't find a Mt. Dew anywhere. In Japan they have vending machines all over the place, stocked with tea, coke, energy drinks and coffee. Yes coffee. Hot coffee. Anyway, I never could find a Mt. Dew. And as far as Sweet Tea goes, nada. They drink all kinds of tea, but nothing like the sweet tea we're used to with lots of sugar. Their tea is really weak and has no sugar at all. Now naturally I didn't drink every type of tea they have, but that's just what I experienced.

10. Social Media. I missed sitting around reading twitter and facebook, and even my favorite blogs. Now this was more due to the fact that every night we went out sight seeing, and to dinner with a large group and just didn't have as much time as I usually do, but I still missed it.

J- Tony

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Checking in from Japan

Hey Lifers...I find myself having a difficult time expressing into words the awesomeness of my trip to Japan. I know it's not every body's cup of tea, and quite frankly I was afraid it wouldn't be mine either when I was first told I would be going. But now that I'm here and have experienced the culture it is just unbelievable.

I had the opportunity this past weekend to visit Tokyo, which was very surreal. We took the bullet train, which travels roughly 180 mph, early Saturday morning two hours north to Tokyo. We then walked through the streets and to one of the many Temples they have here. This is what it looks like as your walking down the street into the Temple.

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We did some shopping and ate on the street, and just took in all the sights. It really was pretty cool. The city alone has a population of around 12 million people, yet it's one of the cleanest cities I've ever seen. It's Japanese custom to carry your own trash and dispose of it when you get home. There are very few actual trash cans on the streets and in the buildings. On Sunday we went to a festival which was much like any festival around my home town, with people drinking, and having picnics, grilling and vendors lining the streets. However there was very little trash anywhere. They are very disciplined people.

I also had the opportunity to visit one of the many Japanese castles here. Apparently this Samurai dude was a big deal back in the day, and they have turned his castle into a museum now, and they have this parade and the festival every year around this time to honor him.

OK that's all for now, more to come. And I'll post some pics when I get back home. Unfortunately I didn't bring the cable with me to be able to dump pictures from my camera.


Thursday, April 5, 2012

My trip...

What up?

As you know I'm on a  work forced vacation in the wonderful country of Japan. I don't have much time to post at the moment but I just wanted to apologize for not keeping up on all the awesome blogs I follow. So If you've posted recently and I've failed to respond I do apologize. I've been stuck in an airport for nearly three days, been on a twelve hour plane ride, and eaten raw squid. I know the squid has nothing to do with anything, I just thought it was cool.

So anyway I promise I'll get back around to you all, and Ill post more about my trip soon.


Monday, April 2, 2012

How do you eat?

Being stuck at the airport for a couple of days gives a guy plenty of time to people watch and see things that quite frankly, I could do with out, like eating.

Now I get the fact that we all have to eat, and with the fast paced world we live in today, people eat on the go more than ever.

This is never more evident than at the airport, and while I hate to watch someone eat, I'm compelled to continue to stare. It's like that car crash you just can't take your eyes off of.

I've witnessed people eating standing up, running, and my personal fav, two feet in front of me.  And I've never seen anyone  eat with style or grace. And just for the record I've never seen anyone like the chick in the Hardee's commercials, who makes it look sexy or hot.

For me, I hate to watch or hear people eat, especially strangers. Which I guess is why I'm a little more conscious of my own eating in public.

So please remember your manners. Keep your mouth closed, don't talk with food in your mouth, and use a napkin, for crying out loud. Remember, the rest of us our watchin.

Tell me, does it bother you to see a stranger eating?


Friday, March 30, 2012

Sleepless night

Its two in the morning and I can't sleep. I'd like to think its just something we all go through at this stage in our lives. Anxieties about bills, jobs and clowns. But not me. Its not something I do on a regular basis. Not that I don't worry about those things, because Lord knows I do. Maybe even more than I should. But I don't loose sleep over them.

No, this sleepless night is due to the fact that in just a few hours I'll be on a plane traveling halfway across the world for a two week vacation. Something I've never done before. I'm not sure if I'm nervous because its something I've never done before, or if I'm excited because its something I've never done before. Either way it keeps me up.

The hallway light provides just enough for me to see the night. Its become an oversized night light for the clown. I hear the sounds of the shower in our bathroom. It has a slow drip coming from the head. Drip...drip....drip. It reminds me of other things around the house that need fixed. The ceiling fan spins above me as it always does. I try to follow just one blade with my eyes without success. I'd have it on year round if she'd let me. My thoughts take me to when I was a kid laying in bed at night. I'd lay there on the top bunk of our bedding tower and listen to whatever my older brother decided on listening to that night. Sometimes we'd listen to music, other nights old radio shows like Abbott and Costello, or Burns and Allen. I remember how I hated it so.

But tonight I think. Think about my trip and my family. I think about the opportunity in front of me. Think about despite my fears and reservations its an opportunity that for me, really is once in a lifetime.

Soon the sun will be up and things will happen fast. Last minute items to pack a.d finally checking in at the airport. I'll worry about if I packed enough. I'll worry about her and the clowns. Deep down I know they'll be fine, buy I'll still worry.

I guess whether we like it or not, its time. Wish us all luck, we're gonna need it.


Tuesday, March 27, 2012

I'm an International Criminal

Yes that's right, I am an international criminal.

So if you remember a month or so ago, I mentioned how my company was sending me to Japan for a little  vacation right? So in my efforts to prep for this trip, I've been getting my affairs in order. Not like writing a will or anything, not those type of affairs. I mean, you don't think I should do something like that do you? I mean...never mind.

OK so anyway, I went to the bank and told them about my plans. When I leave, return yada, yada, yada and asked them kindly to not put a stop on any transactions during that time. That's the last thing I need while I'm gone is to have my bank account froze because somebody thought they were helping my out.

So I did the same thing with the cell phone. The DW decided that she wants to be able to reach me directly if she needs to while I'm over there. Originally I gave her the numbers to the local gentleman's clubs in Japan and just told her to ask for the drunk American, but apparently that wasn't good enough. Said she need to be able to reach me directly; in my pocket. Again, I explained to her that she's been reaching in my pocket since the day we met...my humor was not appreciated.

Anyway back to me being an International Criminal. So we go to the local Verizon store to explain the situation. The little girl behind the counter says is shouldn't be a problem, and she just needed to make a few calls and we'd be on our way.

So Verizon girl calls customer service, and a few minutes later asks me, have you had your identity stolen lately?

To which I reply, Um No.

She gets back on the phone for a few more minutes then back to the DW and I. She begins to explain that my phone number is on the Hot List, and proceeds to ask me questions about cloning my phone, apps I've downloaded, and some other questions all the while typing away.

I have no idea what cloning is, but apparently hackers do it to get information, and according to her sometimes people do it to their own phones (again, not sure why). Now you would have thought that the deer in the headlight look I had on my face would have been enough to convince this ding-bat that I had no idea what she was talking about, but apparently not.

Again, she's back to the customer service line. Now at this point my DW is giving me the look that mothers give their children when they've knocked over the entire end cap at the grocery store. You know the one that says, What the hell have you done now? Yeah, I was getting that look.

After about 20 to 25 minutes, Verizon girl gets off the phone, and assures us that I am now set up for international calling. And when the DW and I asked how my phone got on this Hot List, she couldn't give us a straight answer. Of course the DW was bound and determined to find some answers.

Turns out after calling customer service directly the DW got it all straightened out, and  found out that Verizon girl did it all wrong. In fact the customer service department had no idea what the Hot List even was......Or maybe that's just what they want her to think.


Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Can a box change your life?

We walked toward the car and there in a bush, almost hidden out of sight, was a box. Not addressed to or from anyone. Just an ordinary box. Or maybe it was anything but ordinary.

We noticed it and immediately began to discuss this simple unknown. We came up with scenarios as to what might be in this mysterious box. My thoughts take me to past movies I'd seen with similar story lines. A secret box or letter that someone is to afraid to open. Three or four people all with different views and ideas of what to do with it. A group that starts out united, but quickly becomes divided.

Sometimes the fear or anxiety of the unknown can drive people crazy. I even think about the mythical being Pandora.

We talk about what might be in the box. Ideas such as money, videos, death; material possessions dominate the conversation.

But what if it was something more? What if in that little box were answers? Hope? Love? Direction?

We left that day without ever opening or attempting to open the box, but I haven't forgotten about it. I haven't stopped thinking about how things may have changed had we made a different decision.
What if I'd taken a shot and opened the box that day? Would it have changed my life? Or someone else's life?

What about you, what if you saw that box. You gonna open it?

Just Write

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

It's Coming to Get Me....

Can't sleep. Not sure why. I'm to tired not to. I blame it on daylight savings.

I hear a clown get up. It's her turn. At this rate I'm sure I'll get it soon. It wasn't pretty with the first clown this past weekend. We were both up all night.

She's already up and starts the clean up. She has sick clown duty during the week. I feel sorry for her, but not sorry enough to trade her places. I feel sorry for the clown. I'm not sure which one it is. I don't want to know. I'm tired and I have to get up early. I hear them in the living room. She makes her a makeshift bed on the couch, and gets herself set up in the recliner. It's a terrible sleep I know, but that's what parents do. Good parents anyway. Isn't that the basic function of a parent? Being there for them to clean up the mess?

I lay here, my knee throbs. Even in the middle of the night it hurts. She comes in the room. I pretend to sleep. Not moving. Barely breathing. When she leaves I think back about a younger me. Think about how I got to the point in my life, this point, where I have a bum knee. What's next, telling stories of when I walked to school up a hill?

Footsteps race across the hard wood floor. I soon hear the sound of Ralph. I know it's coming for me. It's out there. Waiting. I have the fear of a teenager in a horror movie knowing that Freddie or Jason is coming to get me and there's not a damn thing I can do about it. I don't want it. I can't get it. Not now, not ever.

Just Write

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

It's Over...

It's over. My first thought is now what? How do we move on from this, more importantly, how do I move on?

We've been together for the last fourteen years and all I can think about at this very moment is myself. What am I gonna do? I know you have feelings too, but I just can't bring myself to understand those feelings, or pretend that I care at this point.

I know that our parting ways are for the best. At least that's what I believe. That's what I have to keep telling myself anyway. That it's for the best. I suppose only time will truly tell.
They say that time heals all wounds. But what about the self inflicted wounds? Does time cure those? They say that I'll forget about you a little more each day until eventually it will seem more like a dream than a life.
I know that life goes on and the sun will come up tomorrow, but for know I want to just sit and remember who we were. What we were.

And tomorrow? Maybe tomorrow I'll start thinking about the next season.

So good luck to you Peyton Manning, and thanks for being our Quarterback.



Wednesday, February 29, 2012

If Not Now, Then When??

It feels like such a different day. As if the world will stop just because I want it to. The boss won't be an ass  the coffee will taste better, and the people won't drain me. But the truth of the matter is, that feeling doesn't last.
The coffee is burnt and old, like something I'd expect to get at an all night truck stop, and immediately I feel like I'm in the movie Office Space.  Corporate Accounts Payable, Nina Speaking; Just a moment.

During my break I catch up on a few blogs. Jack over at the Jackb makes me think about life. I enjoy reading posts that speak to me. That make me think. At the same time I hate them for that very same reason. They make me think. I don't realize today is already Wednesday. Its an ordinary day. Nothing different than the day before. Or the day before that. Jacks' blog makes me realize this. He talks about what matters, or what matters now. Again, it makes me think. What matters to me? Right now. At this time in my life. I take away a thought: If not now then when?
Maybe it's silly, but really. If not now then when? When do we stop dreaming and start doing? What are we waiting for? What am I waiting for? The highlight of my day is deciding what candy bar to buy from the machine. After humming the jingle I decide on Almond Joy. Almond Joy's got nuts, Mounds don't. The jingle helps me remember.

Just a thought. If not now, then when?


Just Write

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Play Ball...

I stood there listening to the words of the song. Standing in a crowd next to my five year old. His arms dangling at his sides, his eyes focused. He stands motionless. I stand motionless.

Oh, say can you see by the dawn's early light.

He has no idea of the words or their meanings. I wonder how many young people around me truly do.

What so proudly we hailled at the twiligth's last gleamning.

Next to us an old couple sings along. They know the words. They know the meanings. I see it in the way the sing. As if auditioning for American Idol. Two young boys in front of us watch them in amazement. Maybe they're amazed that the couple knows the words. Maybe they're amazed that old people actually sing.

What so proudly we hailled at the twilight's last gleaming.

He has no idea why we stand, or why we put our hands over our heart. His idea of freedom is sitting around in his underoos watching t.v all day. After all he's five.

My thoughts take me to being a parent. I wonder if I'm teaching them what really matters. You know the things that will mold them into being successful decent adults that people will be proud of. I want them to be better than I was, than I am. I want to teach them the things nobody taught me. I don't want them to have to learn the hard way. Life's to hard as it is.

And the rockets red glare, the bombs bursting in air.

Hearing this song always makes me want to cry. Not because I'm a sap, but because it represents us. It represents my dad. My family. My friends. I want to sing at the top of my lungs but I refrain. Mostly because I can't carry a tune. But also because I don't want to embarass us. Maybe I am a sap.

And the home of the brave....

The calm is broken.

Play Ball...


Just Write

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Promotion Test Saturday

It's test day for my three ninjas. So many emotions. You'd think I'd be better prepared. I'm so proud of them. So nervous for them. Does it ever get easier? Watching them, knowing I can't help. Knowing I can't fix it or make it easier. I wish I could answer for them. Wish I could just do it for 'em.

The class is full. Every parent, and some grandparents come to watch their family member earn a new belt. The taekwondo Grand Master makes me think of Yoda as he speaks to the students in his broken English. He says things like, much appreciation you must give parents. Study hard you must. I feel like any minute he's gonna break out a light saber, or stop and claim he feels a disturbance in the force. He never does.

He asks each of them questions. Questions we've studied the last twenty-four hours. Questions I know they know. Each one of them answer correctly. The youngest struggles just a bit. The Grand Master let's it slide because the boy is five, and also because he's already cashed my check.

Soon they break boards. The boy is nervous that he won't pass. The girls are strong. They look like they could be the next Power Rangers. They break boards with their feet that should be used to build houses. I am proud. The boy tries to break the same type of board. After several failed attempts he moves to a smaller board. Finally success. I can see in his eyes he's disappointed. I'm saddened. I wanted it for him.I wanted to see him break the big board.

After class we talk. We talk about how its still very impressive for his age that he's breaking boards with his feet. We talk about next time. We talk about how proud I am of all of them. My words of encouragement fall on deaf ears. He claims he'll never be able to do it. I start to feel sad. I don't know what else to say. I don't know how to make him understand that he's five, and that with more practice he'll be able to do soon. With each explanation he gets more discouraged. I get discouraged. Then out of nowhere, he finally gets it as he says:

What's for lunch?

And with that, we move on.


Just Write

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Me and My Girl

We buckle up and turn the radio on. It's just her and I in the car. She's the one I spend the most one on one time with out of the three. Maybe because she's the oldest. We can actually talk. Have like interests. Music seems to be a common thread for us.

I watch her as she sits next to me. She's not a little girl anymore. Maybe I'm hardest on her. I expect more because she's the oldest. Or maybe because she's the easiest, I'm not sure which. She does her own thing. She knows better. I know it's not fair. In the car she's mesmerized by the snow flakes that have begun to fall from the night sky. On the windshield we look for two that are alike. Eventually she gets lost in the radio and begins to sing.

I think back about the last few hours we just spent with my father in-law and his two daughters. I hate Chinese food. I don't complain. At least not with any real seriousness. I go along because its not for me. I know this. No this is a birthday celebration for him. A time for him to spend with his girls and their families.

 The place was busy. Friday night. We sat in the back room. It's a room that gives the impression that it was designed for families with rowdy clowns. My family. We spend our time talking and eating. Talking about the future, and reminiscing about yesterday. I enjoyed the time. It gives perspective. Meaning. Purpose. I think about how my clown will one day have a family of her own. I think about the song the cats in the cradle, and it makes me appreciate our ride home together. Just the two of us.

We get home and again it's just the two of us. At one point I say how proud I am of her, just in general. Nothing specific. She's a good kid, and I think it's an important thing to say. She blows it off, as if I'm obligated to say it. She's funny like that. She doesn't want the same affection the middle clown wants, and doesn't need the same affection the youngest clown needs.

Soon our time is interrupted as the others come home. It was fun while it lasted.


Just Write

Thursday, February 9, 2012

The Morning

Mornings are the worst. I didn't sleep well. This particular morning I awake with Pearl Jam rocking in my head. I'm not sure where it came from, but I'm not terribly disappointed that it's there. As I lay there half awake, I try to clear my head. I've purposely set the alarm clock wrong in an effort to trick myself into getting up early. It never works. I've become too smart to trick myself.

I lay motionless. I say a prayer, asking my God to give me strength for the day ahead. I'm not sure if he hears me, but I like to think He does, plus it gives me a sense of security. A feeling of having my own personal body guard for the day.

In the shower thoughts of my daily tasks creep up. Things that need done today. People I need to speak with, meetings I have. Things I've no doubt put off doing that have now reached crunch time. I tell myself that one day I'm gonna be pro active and not wait till the last minute to do things. I know it's a lie but somehow it reassures me that things will be better. That I'll change.

Brushing my teeth and fixing my hair I try not to focus on the body I've clearly let go over the last year. Bending over brushing ones teeth really does accentuate the need to lose weight. I know this yet everyday I choose to ignore it. I'm sure she sees too, along with the increasing amount of grey hair that's beginning to cover my body. She never mentions it.

I get dressed in a dimly lit room. I'm considerate enough to keep quiet as she sleeps, even though I'm jealous. Jealous that she sleeps while I get dressed before the sun comes up. Jealous that I physically cannot stay up as late as she can. Jealous that I have to leave in general. My jealousy is not rage, its just pure innocent jealousy. As pure and innocent as jealousy can be I suppose. I find socks in the laundry basket that has managed to become a permanent fixture on our hope chest. I search for two that are colored. I've come to grips with the fact that having matching socks has no overall bearing on my life. I no longer try to match 'em, as long as they're both dark, I'm satisfied.

As the coffer maker warms up I feed the animals who have begun to stir. They both act as if they haven't eaten in days. Around here I'm not so sure that isn't the case. I let Maggie outside. She's a good dog that I sometimes think got in with the wrong family. We rescued her from the pound years ago, before the clowns came, so I guess our rescuing her was better than her alternative. But since then she's become more like the old in-law that moves in with you. You hate that she's there but you can't throw her out.The cat follows me through the house puring. He follows and willingly shows affection with every step. It's the only time of the day in which he shows any type of appreciation. Usually he's running for his life. Running to stay away from the boy.

Before I leave I check on each of my clowns. They sleep. Safe. Sound. I already miss them. My entire routine takes me half an hour, twenty minutes if needed.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Today's Thoughts...

On our way to karate class. The van's a mess. I'm disgusted with the appearance, but I know its a fight I can't win. I get a call, she tells me the car is acting up again. Its been on the fritz lately. I want to get rid of the piece of crap so badly but I don't. I can't pull the trigger. Mostly out of fear. Fear of shopping  for and purchasing a new car. And frankly to me at this point, the hassle of it giving us fits does not yet out weigh the hassle of new car buying. I tell her it sucks, and move my thoughts elsewhere.

I hate karate class. I don't let on. I never let on that I hate it, but I do. I hate thinking about how much money it costs. I hate the fact that we are contractually obligated to come. I hate knowing that it's mostly my fault that we have that obligation. I'd punch the instructor in the throat if I wasn't afraid she'd kick my ass.

At a stoplight I see a gentleman standing outside holding a piece of cardboard. It reads Out of work. Have family, any spare change is appreciated. Down the road a bit is a Taco Bell with a sign that reads Now Hiring Managers, Apply inside. I wonder what type of man is to embarrassed to work at a Taco Bell, yet not to embarrassed to beg for change? I think of how on the way home, I should stop and give him some money. Or an application.

We pass a mini van with a female driver. She wears a do-rag on her head, Aunt Jamima style. I think, wtf, she's old enough to know better. I'm embarrassed for her. I'm embarrassed for my town.

Inside at karate the smell of stale cigarette lingers on the couple in front of me. They're new here. Their boy forever will be known as Snots at my house. I wonder if other parents have nick names for the kids. I'm sure they do, parents can be cruel. Thirty minutes in and Snots' parents head outside to smoke. The smell is unbearable upon their return. It makes me appreciate the fact that I once had the will power to quit.
I watch my boy go through his moves. I worry about him the most. He's to much like me. I already know his struggles. His fears. His short comings. I pray that I'll be able to help him along the way. I pray that he's not to much like me and he lets me help him.

On the way home I stop at two different places for dinner because I'm a cool dad like that. But mostly because all three of them can never agree on one place, and frankly I'd rather stop twice then listen to them argue. I hear them discussing how the oldest was trying to sell the other two at karate. I'm pissed upon hearing of her plan. Only because I wasn't offered a cut. Before pulling in the driveway I hear her explaining how an ostrich is too big to fly. She's either very smart or very weird. Sometimes Im not sure which.

Once home we change, eat, and sit around the rest of the evening. The clowns find things to keep them occupied since we don't watch t.v on Tuesdays. They've grown accustom to it. One colors, one plays on an ipod. I'm not sure what the third does. She often gets lost in the shuffle. She's the middle child you know.

Soon it's bed time. We'll struggle to get in bed in a timely manner. I'll make idle threats about beating them if they don't get in bed. They'll mock me. Not to my face of course, but inside. Later, I'll tuck them in and tell each one what I expect of them for the following day.Then I'll let them know how much I love and cherish them.


Just Write

Monday, February 6, 2012

Perhaps I was wrong....

Ok so a little while back I wrote this post, Like a Virgin about the Super Bowl. More to the point, about the halftime show at the Super Bowl. If you haven't read it, go check it out.

When the announcement came that Madonna would be the halftime entertainment at this year's Super Bowl, I for one was not shy about voicing my opinion. I thought the NFL made a bad decision. I thought this year would fall right in line with all the other bad performances we've seen since the famous wardrobe malfunction of 2004. I thought this would be no different than The Who, Paul McCartney, or Tom Petty of recent years.

But....Perhaps I was wrong.

I'm not a big Madonna fan. Her music is just not my thing. But I thought last night she put on one of the best halftime shows we've seen in the last seven years, and here's why.

First the sound. Sure she lip synced the entire thing, but isn't the point of the show to sound good? Isn't that what we want, a sound system that lets you hear the words, hear the actual singing? And she did sing it. It was just recorded on the Friday prior to the show. But think about it. She's fifty some years old, you really think she could be dancing around the stage like that and sing a thirty minute show without getting winded? No way. I'm not fifty and I get winded when I'm singing folding laundry. I'll take the lip sync everyday of the week if it makes 'em sound better. Ever heard of Milli Vanilli? 

Next lets take the performance. While all she really did was walk around the stage, let some people pick her up, and thrust her hips a little here and there, she looked great doing it. I thought she actually looked presentable.What we didn't see was an old washed up star who looked more like she belonged in a half way house than at the Super Bowl. Now maybe it's because I've grown accustom to seeing old men like Mic Jagger and McCartney hobble around praying they don't break a hip, but I thought she looked great.

Speaking of the performance, her or maybe better yet, her people, did a good job of mixing in some of today's hottest stars. Nicki Minaj and MIA, LMFAO, as well as Cee Lo Green. At the time, I didn't know any of these stars, except the pudgy guy from the 7up commercials, but my clowns did. In fact I caught the boy singing along at one point.

And despite MIA flipping of the t.v camera off, the show seemed to go off without a hitch. So, ok maybe I was wrong.


Monday, January 30, 2012

What's Trending Today???

So every morning after I get my coffee and sit down at my desk, I hop on my phone and see what's happening on Facebook and Twitter. Last week while doing so, I noticed that Thong Thursday was trending on twitter.

A few hours passed, and  I texted The 'Ol Lady, I'm not sure why I just called her that. I never rarely call her that, to her face. Anyhow, I texted the DW and informed her that Thong Thursday was trending on Twitter and asked if it was trending at the Palace? Bow chicka bow wow.

To which she quickly replied, um no, no it's not.


She proceeded to post our conversation about Thong Thursday on Facebook, and trying to be funny, possed the question, would I look better in cheetah, or zebra print? Of course I saw her post and we continued to texted back and forth about the matter for a little while. I know, productive day right?

Eventually our conversation led to this.....

Now that's funny......

No thanks, I think I'll stick to my briefs.


Sunday, January 29, 2012

Weekend Daddy Hero

So we all have our routines Monday thru Friday. Work or school, followed by homework, practices, baths, a little t.v and bed. It was was pretty much the same routine when I was a clown.

But the weekends are a different story.

As a father, I feel that I have an obligation to be a  daddy hero, come Saturday and Sunday. Now I'm pretty much a daddy hero everyday, but we all know that during the week things get hectic. Monday runs into Tuesday, who knows where Wednesday went, and before you know it, it's Thursday night and you're just hoping you can get through the end of the week without putting a coworker in the sleeper hold. But the weekend is different. That's when we dad's get to be hero's.

On Friday night, you tell the DW to get ready because we're going out. And I'm not talking dinner from a bag here people. This is one of those, take your hair out of a pony tail, put on clean clothes and let's actually be seen in public, kind of nights. Now granted, this is usually followed by a trip to Chilli's, but hey it's something.

The heroism doesn't stop there either.

Friday night is followed by Saturday morning where dad gets to display one of his greatest acts of heroism. The Saturday morning breakfast. Now sometimes this can be pushed back until Sunday morning, but there truly is no greater act from our hero than when he scales what has become the pop tart mountain his clowns have been stuck on Monday thru Friday and saves them with a batch of his famous waffles, or cinnamon french toast.

Throughout the weekend, throw in some extra purchased items at the store like candy, a book, or soda. A wrestling slash tickle match here and there, and allow your living room to be taken over by Barbie and Star Wars with no grown-up t.v until after 9 pm, and you've become a weekend daddy hero

I love being a daddy hero.


Friday, January 27, 2012

Take a little trip, Take a little trip, Take a little Trip with me.....

Any idea what this movie clip has to do with me???

No I wasn't asked to prove if a frog's ass is water tight or anything like that. But rather yesterday I was told that my company will be sending me to Japan for two weeks.

It's an awesome opportunity to visit a place that I, more than likely, would not visit on my own. I'll be going for a two week training, and I won't be by myself, but by the same token I'm a little nervous. After all, it is a foreign country and I'll be away from the DW and clowns for two weeks so that's gonna suck. I won't be going for a few more months, so I've got some time to prepare myself I guess.

So if anyone has any tips on foreign travel, or Japan, I'd love to hear from ya.