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Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Five Things I Think, Post Food Coma editition

Oh, the holidays...a time when I hide the scale and have more pie.

1) I think I had too much turkey. There were two turkeys at family Thanksgiving, smaller birds but tasty. One was smoked, the other rubbed with a lemon-herb-wine concoction by Wifefish. Then our friends feast featured a farm-raised feathered fellow that we named "Hank". (New Girl, anyone? Hanksgiving!) The yum, it was mighty.

2) I think I love the holidays. I don't get into the crazy comsumerism, hell I don't have the money these days to do so. But I do get into being surrounded by friends, family, loved ones. I love catching up with old friends and spending time with people I'm just damn glad to know.

3) I think Time Warner Cable can gargle balls. I signed up for their $84.90 bundle deal with TV and internet, but when they were finalizing the order, the actual price came to $118. Extras for HD, DVR, and equipment fees. I told them to take a flying leap. I absolutely abhor bait-and-switch pricing. It drives me batshit insane, like a day trapped in an elevator between floors with Justin Bieber music playing on endless repeat and a Twilight fan rattling off a soliloquy of why they like the movies, all while someone takes a cheese grater to my scrotum. Maybe I should drink less coffee.

4) I think there are too many desserts at the house. Granted, there are fewer today than 2 days ago...but that's because I put them in my belly. Leftover pie of 3 kinds, cheesecake,'s like the Keebler elves mugged Betty Crocker and decided our kitchen was going to be the stash location. I'm going to have to install a treadmill in front of the Scotch shelf of my bar.

5) I think this being too busy to write and read and comment thing makes me feel like a bad blogger. Someone should roll up an online newspaper and swat me on the virtual nose. Or pay me. Paying me would be good.

That's my five today. Don't forget to check me and the rest of the gang out at! Now you can click on my name and see all the crazy shit I find in the news!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Five Things I Think, November 22

Greetings, folks. It's time again. Time to put on our thinking caps. Ready? Let's do this!

1) I think I had a great trip last week. I found myself in Myrtle Beach, on business. I'd never been there. The hotel Wifefish and I stayed at, the Myrtle Beach Marriott Resort and Spa at Grande Dunes (what a mouthful!), was fucking fantastic.
I've been on many, many business trips over the past 16 years, and this is the first time I've felt like a rock star. A-list. Tom Cruise without the couch jumping and alien worship. I recommend the place highly for friendly, attentive staff in a good location on the beach.
Sitting outside, eating dinner, and listening to the surf upon arrival was just perfect. It was nice to pretend for a few days that we aren't flat frakking broke.

The view from the 15th floor. This did not suck.

2) I think it's very endearing, if perhaps a bit icky, to get a snotty toddler kiss in the morning. I was both disgusted and touched. Little Danger has learned to give kisses, and it's the cutest thing ever. (Until the next cute thing happens, of course.)

3) I think it's exceptionally difficult to change a diaper when the toddler whom is being changed has a foam sword in his hand. Duck and weave, cartoon goes in front, duck and weave, fasten, duck and weave, pants on, duck and THWACK! "That's my nose!" Game over.

4) I think that driving to Myrtle Beach was ex-fucking-xhausting. 11+ hours behind the wheel, twice. Granted, the drive through the mountains was beautiful, and filled with the kind of curves at 65 mph that make you feel like a fighter pilot. It was also nice to get a bunch of revision work done on a game was not a boring drive, at least.

5) I think I'd better start hitting the gym HARD. It's Thanksgiving week, which means not one, but two big turkey dinners for us. I picked up our "home" turkey, which we have posthumously named Hank, from Serenity Valley Farm yesterday. He's a big bird. He promises to be tasty and fresh, and I hope he lives up to his potential as the centerpiece of my inevitable weight gain.

Last time, I thought I'd get some writing done while we were gone. Guess what I didn't do. But since I was alternately being pampered and working to get sales, I have no regrets. I regret nothing!!!
Now, I'm back to work. I've got a hell of a slump to dig out of, and precious little time to do it in. I go!

Monday, November 14, 2011

5 Things I Think, November 14

Greetings gang. A very sore Dangerboy salutes you. It's been a weekend of physical effort, with more abuse in store. Sadly, Ibuprofen and Scotch don't go together. But Scotch and more Scotch do. I chose Ibuprofen.

1) I think I had a good, geeky weekend. Two days filled with foam stick beatdown, both hard and light. It was good to see things from a different perspective, since I'm often running events. Being a "noob" was just good fun. Having spent Friday afternoon raking leaves at the family homestead, though, my body is not nearly as pleased as my mind by these shenanigans. Not nearly.

2) I think I have some friends who are effing saints. Little Danger got to spend the day in the company of some awesome women on Saturday, as Wifefish and I attended to item 1 there. One of the sitters decided to be the ninja of kitchen dishes, and we returned to a cleaner kitchen than we'd left. Saints, I tell you.

3) I think that Megashark vs Crocosaurus on SyFy was fucking ridiculous. I was trapped under a sleeping Little Danger, and could not wrestle the remote away from Ruffstuff. He tortured me by leaving it on.
Wifefish recreated a scene with a shark hat and an oven mitt as puppets, and I laughed so hard I cried. I am certain that this movie was made specifically to be bad, but I'm not sure even that forgives it. The puppet show was certainly superior.

4) I think I am not looking forward to the 11 hour car trip tomorrow. Nor the return 11 hour car trip on Saturday. I am looking forward to using that time to work on manual revisions and being no further than 14 inches from Wifefish for an entire day.
I'm headed out on a business trip, and she gets to accompany me. It's a beggar's celebration of our 10 year anniversary, a k-k-k-killer combo! trip of work and play. The plane ticket to this destination were twice as much as two extra nights at the resort, so fabulous boss coughed up the two nights. Score.

5) I think I'll try to take some time to write this week. I should have some downtime on this trip, so hopefully I can make some words manifest. You should be sure to check out the things I've been writing over at Sprocket Ink in the meantime!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Five Things I Think, Nov 8

I hope you'll forgive me for being a date late with my thoughts. Of course, if you don't, there's not much you can do about it. Maybe haze me in the comments or something...

1) I think I've got a pretty huge and geeky opportunity on the horizon that, sadly, I can't talk much about. But it does make me evaluate my opinions and has made me think that perhaps I should be careful not to paint with too broad a mental brush. I find myself cautiously optimistic, having been burned in this arena once before. Once bitten, twice skeptical as all hell.

2) I think I'm a zombie today. I don't know what was wrong with Little Danger last night, but he was crying about every 10 minutes. I finally threw in the towel and snuggled him in the guest bed, which let him get some sleep. Me, not so much. It's time for the coffee IV, stat! Going back over the blog, I can see that this happens with some frequency. It strikes me that the zombie apocalypse will begin with parents of toddlers. One of us will be patient zero.

3) I think I despise election season. I've had a certain union that will remain nameless calling my cellphone to solicit my vote on their issue. I've asked them to remove my number multiple times, but still, they call. I get voter fatigue every election, and whereas I love the right to vote, I am tired of people bugging me about it. Especially on my cell. Call me and bug me about an issue, and I can guarantee an earful of expletives.

4) I think that it's important to push through the grump sometimes. I had a crappy morning on Saturday, and had nearly resolved to skip a party that night and be, in short, a curmudgeon. As it was a costume party and I was part of a group costume, I went anyway. And I had a fantastic time, and felt the angst and stress of the day evaporate amongst friends. I wonder how many expulsions of stress I have missed out on out of simple harrumph-y self-spite. I think I'll try not to do that anymore.

5) I think Space Marine is a fucking beautiful game. If you're a 40k fan, you need to check it out. The attention to detail is riveting, the "grimdark" palpable. Gothic touches abound and background noises make the scenes more immersive, driving home the bleak hopelessness of man in the vast Imperium. Also, thwacking swathes of orks into a bloody goo with a Thunder Hammer is just so very, very cathartic. I think it'll be difficult to give it back to Bodek, whom I gratefully thank for the borrow.

Well, that's five things. Not very profound, but I am still harried by the lack of income just now. Back to the grind!

So...what do YOU think today?

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Things I Hate, vol 12: Trick or Treat Edition

It’s time, ladies and gentlemen, for another Dangerboy rant. As some of you may have known, this year was Little Danger’s first trick-or-treat. He was a bit overwhelmed by it all, wandering through a neighborhood filled with ninjas, pirates, ghosts, goblins, and ghouls. We were surrounded by muppets, superheroes, rock stars, and fairies. The very streets were filled with costumed looters. It was Occupy Trick Or Treat, and the kids were the 99%.

It was nearly idyllic.

Granted, there was that one old man that was handing out “Bit O’ Honey”, perpetually oblivious to the fact that only 1% of children actually consider those things to be candy. They are generally the last thing eaten out of the loot bag, unless some asshole lays in a stock of circus peanuts. Ye flipping Gods, whoever invented those orange cardboard-flavored torturers of taste buds should have been drawn and quartered. I’d rather lick a brussels-sprout-and-skunk-ass lollipop than eat a circus peanut.

This is NOT candy, old man.

But I digress! That was a mere smudge upon the evening, and one that I certainly expected. What I didn’t expect, but perhaps should have, was the old couple that desperately wanted to save the souls of each and every child in the neighborhood. They eagerly stuffed a piece of candy and a folded sheet of paper into my 15-month old’s plastic punkin o’ plenty. I smiled, and thanked them, and trotted on. (Keeping up with the other kids in the crew was not a task for the weak; if you want your child to compete in a marathon, simply put buckets of candy every ½ mile and they will smoke most professional athletes!)

After what seemed like 83 more houses, which a glance at the candy bucket corrected to only 10 (unless 73 houses stiffed us on candy), some discussion ensued amongst us parental types about the papers the elderly couple had handed out. They were tracts, those lovely little comics that are designed to scare children to God. This one was small, a single-folded sheet to make 4 small pages.

Here’s the first thing you read on the back:

You need to understand that you are a sinner and the punishment for your sin is death in Hell.” The whole thing was written in much the same vein, and suggested the children say a prayer admitting they are a sinner “on my way to Hell.”

Seriously? You’re concerned that my 15-month old is committing sins aplenty in his toddlerhood, and is already on the road to damnation and hellfire for all eternity? Look, gramps, I will concede that he may summon dooky demons in his diaper and merrily make mischief among men with foam swords and dump trucks, but I’m fairly certain that he’s pretty solidly in the “not the spawn of Satan” category. (Although, to be fair, sometimes I wonder whilst in the middle of a diaper change. Holy olfactory assault, Batman!)

Little Danger as a satyr. The cuteness is lethal.

But what of all the kids who received this missive that could, in fact, read it? Surely they would have dreams of fiery torment this night, and be scared into renouncing Lucifer loudly! Well, not so much. Upon returning to the house, one of the young rapscallions read his “trick” as he consumed his treats, and the kids discussed it, in their way. “This is stupid”, they proclaimed.

Bingo! Got it in one. Mind you, this kid was (I think) a churchgoer. And yet, his opinion of the tract was succinct and, in my opinion, accurate.

I wasn’t actively offended by the concept…Halloween is a great time for propagandizing to the youth. Candy bribery is a time-honored parental tradition. In fact, next year I may hand out flyers proclaiming the power of the Flying Spaghetti Monster. I was, however, blown away by the “fear sells” concept of the message. I’m in sales, and I’m pretty sure that “you are going to Hell” isn’t a hit with the target market.

Maybe a redesign is in order. Here are my thoughts on a better message:

“Come to church, it’s cooler than candy!”

“Psalms…they’re like Pokemons! Collect ‘em all!”

“Jesus is tougher than Optimus Prime, and He loves you 10 times more than any Autobot!”

“Your Faith is none of our fucking business! Have a great Halloween!”

I’m kind of partial to that last one. Look, maybe Jesus said to go out and spread the word, but I’m pretty sure he didn’t say “And make sure you freak the kids out while you’re doing it.” I didn’t see any Bhuddists stuffing meditation candles in bags. I didn’t see any pagans putting flyers for their Samhain circles in with the Snickers. I didn’t find a single spliff snuck in by a Rastafarian. Those people were too busy eating candy and enjoying the fucking holiday. (Especially the Rasta, likely owing to an epic case of munchies.)

And so I salute you, Grandma and Grandpa Busybody, but I salute you with one finger. Guess which one. Be glad I’m a lazyass, for it would have been oh, so simple to assemble an army of ninjas, pirates, and future graduates of Monster High to fire a barrage of eggs and TP at your domicile. And for that, you should thank me.

So what do you think? Was it over the top, or just an opportunity to save a soul or 53?

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