fo shame

Big doins around the castle this weekend and I tried to post about some of it but the gods of content were against me. So I will try to sum up as best I can. Saturday night through a convergence of concerts and all female birthday celebrations found me with a rare weekend night of solitude. So I was busting out some things off of the big checklist when things got a little weird.

I was out front trying to plant some grass seed in the weed rings that used to be parkway trees destroyed by some Asian insect when a random dude pulled up in front of my neighbors house and got out. Now I should give some back story to the few who don’t know. Next door neighbor is very old. Great Lady but had her husband die twentyish years ago and it flipped a switch in her. Time stopped and the crazy crept in. So much so that she hasn’t been able to part with his old broken down car or non-functioning fishing boat since. In fact by the looks of her single plastic grocery bag of garbage once a week for the 14 years we’ve lived here implied she didn’t part with much else.

She would never let anyone in the house which mostly confirmed the hoarding suspicions since I have shoveled her driveway and helped with other things during that entire time. Anyway, flash forward to a couple months ago when she was hospitalized. Now she is in a nursing home and her niece is in charge of the estate. First to go was the jalopy. It had been in one place for so long that when I went to inspect the driveway there were divots under each tire placement. I would have taken a picture but the next day a dumpster showed up and I knew it was going to get interesting.

So by Saturday no one had showed and the big bin remained empty but I correctly figured it wouldn’t be long. So I walked over to the dude now pulling a garbage bag from his trunk and asked if I could help him. He tried to give me a NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS scowl which triggered instant protective redass from yours truly.

He said something like “nothing I need to worry about” to which I replied by taking a picture of his license plate. He asked what the hell I thought I was doing so I explained that if he in fact tossed that bag into the dumpster I was going to retrieve it and dump it out all over the driveway and street. Then I would call the police and explain how some random idiot thought this was a public trash can and missed while tossing his bag of shame.

“What the hell is a bag of shame?” he demanded so I explained that another reason I would be dumping it out would be to see what he couldn’t throw away at his own house. I’m curious like that. He put the bag back in his trunk and drove away without another word. And now I am on the lookout for his car in the neighborhood. I do so love having an active adversary.

perspective

I am trapped with a twisted perspective on most things. A great example of this is a commercial you’ve probably seen dozens of times and paid little to no attention. Its the State Farm on titled Never.

Most people watch this and think something like aaaawwwww. This guy watches it and at the end thinks “wow, that dude is about to abandon those two little girls.” I couldn’t help but notice that ever time he says NEVER he does the exact opposite so his never letting go could mean anything from faking his own death to just walking away.

And that’s the other part of my curse, I notice things that most folks just let pass through their existence. I have tried to turn it down but it is a hard wired fault. oh well, just continue to roll with it.

I’ll go

Someone needed to clean the lake last night and I haven’t been out of town all month so I volunteered. I drew the long straw because I think we rented to a flock of maids.


I just had to run the linens through the wash and do some light straightening. I was doing my final check and discovered a list treasure.


Unopened bottle of trouble. I know it will go away on guys weekend but I have a bushel of family coming over the fourth of July so it doesn’t have a chance.

okay dummy

Yesterday might have seemed like I would completely change my life if I had it to do all over again and that is not the case. I am a firm believer in IT COULD ALWAYS BE WORSE and know that any major changes I could make would drastically alter my current life. If I changed anything it would be little interactions with other people not major life choices.

When I was a young man I was stupid. Not lacking in raw intelligence but a rolling lack of common sense. It would wash over me in waves and would concern things that have led me to the place where I now find myself. During the dumb times I treated people as less than they deserved and for that I am truly sorry. Some that I loved some that I didn’t but none deserved mistreatment. That I would truly fix and unable to do that I would at least apologize. In matters of the heart especially I was a bit of a coward as well.

For the few who did earn my wrath I probably took that a bit too far because it felt good. It felt like that was a natural skill I was gifted with and when I got to open it up I rarely held back. I had an old friend remind me recently of the time when my then girlfriend now wife had been intimidated at a party by a former boss. It was a veiled threat delivered by a wannabe bad movie villain. I was not there which made it much worse in my brain and she was confused and a little scared. Something about her being pretty and a shame…

As I was standing in the parking lot of his business a couple nights later holding the bat I had just used to break all of his car windows (not a huge accomplishment my the way. It was a corvette not a 15 passenger van or anything that would have completely worn me out) I can still remember how great it felt screaming for him to come out of the bar and threaten me. One of my bouncer friends eventually calmed me down with a promise of making sure it was over and done. That was the last time I heard from him but like I said Young and Stupid.

The big mistakes, career, money, etc. aren’t so bad. Even not finishing college probably helped me more than it hurt. So don’t look at any thinking you read here as a desire to change the past. Its a dream to make a better future.

 

legs

“What would you do if you didn’t need money?” I love that steaming pile of fiction because Gene Roddenberry was the only one to create a society without the need for currency of some type. So any answer I give had better lead to money or else I will be a really happy poor person. Not that I couldn’t be great at that, it’s not a feasible reality. But that question has been coming up a lot in my life lately and it has me wondering.

Part of my fascination with the whole downsizing into a smaller and possibly mobile living space is the reduction of dependence. The need for things is powerful and I am as guilty as the next person. probably more. I could be using stuff to fill a void that the beer and excess food don’t cover or it could just be the short lived excitement from trying something new. Whatever it is if you have nowhere to keep anything getting more becomes an issue. Most people who have whittled their lives down have a one in one out policy of some kind. I think I could live with that.

So back to the initial question and what I would do… It would be travel around writing about everything and reviewing gadgets for income. I have always been a technophile and I love the journey of acquiring something then figuring out everything I can about it. What makes it great, how it could possibly improve my life, what it lacks, and ultimately why it annoys the living piss out of me. Even better if I figure out how to get hired to do this the stuff would come in the form of evaluation units not things I had to purchase then get rid of.

I’m writing this here because I now think this is an attainable dream. it’s going to take some planning but I can make this happen. I might be able to figure out how to make this work with my current career as well. My life might have to undergo a radical overhaul but probably better than worrying yourself to death. Since this thought jumped into my head this afternoon I am having trouble concentrating on anything else.

I am just on the front end of this but its rolling down a hill quickly. My office already contains most of my worldly goods as I made the built in closet the home for my clothes. If I pulled my bike and my golf clubs in that would be it. Plus, half the crap in here now could hit a dumpster and I wouldn’t blink. This one has legs.

goodbye Apple watch

I have re-gifted my Apple watch and I feel as if I have been unchained. I wanted to love the thing. I mean I REALLY wanted to love it. The first couple weeks I had it I convinced myself that I really liked a bunch of its features. This was bullshit justification. I was a slave to yet another piece of electronics and the benefits did not outweigh the asspain.

It was great being able to feel a vibration every time I got a text or other notification but after a while it sucked. It was cool seeing who was calling and being able to ignore the call without picking up the phone but answering said same on my watch made me hate myself. The health app was cool but didn’t seem very accurate. And everything else I wanted to do seemed to take a beat longer than if I had just grabbed my phone in the first place.

I am already a charge slave to the phone but if I use it right that is an every other day thing. Not so with the watch. Miss a day of charging and you turn your wrist three or four times before you realize its dead not just misbehaving. The charger thing is weird as well because it is another cord and connection to carry. They could have made it compatible with the Qi wireless standard that everyone else uses but being Apple they wanted to tag me for more cash. I am starting to think about a long road run and every time I had to take the thing off to charge annoyed me.

So the planets aligned and a deserving soul needed some of the features and could appreciate the toy. I started thinking about this plan on Sunday and it took until today to execute. As I was cleaning up I noticed that the annoying take a screenshot for no reason problem I had left me a present.

IMG_0516

Its almost like it was saying goodbye. ridiculous.

 

ack

Have you ever screwed something up to the point that you want to erase it from your memory? I had a minor one of those on Saturday. Okay, that seems weird. a MINOR mistake that you want to go away… I think I can call it minor now that there has been some time separation. Anyway, its really not that big a deal in the grand scheme of things but at the time I was on overload. Let me explain.

I was trying to get too much done at once. I wont bore you with the pile of chores I was attempting but I ended up in my office with a bunch of old paint cans stacked on my desk. As luck would have it one of the cans fell off, hit the wood I use as a carpet protector and spilled red high gloss paint all over my beloved sanctuary. I flipped out.

For the first fifteen minutes I was just trying to contain the destructive ooze. Once that was under control it was time to assess the long term damage. My floor looked like a glossy murder scene and for a brief second I considered heading out to buy yellow paint for a body outline. Funny, but every time I looked at it I would not be laughing. Plus I would be painting over the carpet and that is never fun.

(how would I know that painting carpet isnt fun? In college we built our own bathroom in a rented basement. The flooring was AstroTurf so we painted yard lines and hash marks. This turned into a drunken pain in the ass but the results were as awful as they sound.)

I decided to try and clean the carpet while the paint was still wet. Three hours later I wanted someone dead. No matter what I tried I kept getting pink on the paper towels. It was infuriating. And my particle board carpet protector looked disgusting. I was in a dark place. Eventually I got the  carpet to a place I could live with but when the light is just right you can still see the evidence. Note to my real life friends: mentioning the stained carpet will be a dangerous endeavor for a long time. You have been warned.

IMG_0518The initial spill was roughly that size with a thousand or so splatter dots everywhere. That tile you see is peel and stick clearance vinyl from Home Depot. At fifty cents a tile it was an economical cover up. The paint came right off of the desk legs but the carpet will forever disappoint.

IMG_0517

fAAAAACCCCCCKKKKK I can barely stand to glance at this picture and the stain is currently three feet from my left. I hate it the most because it was a stupid mistake. Easily avoidable. idiot.

I am heading out later today to buy a bunch of carpet cleaner in a last ditch effort to depink my floor. Expectations are low. Why does this bother me so?

postpost

Invention idea: This one is beyond me so I am throwing it out into the much smarter universe… There has to be a way to get rid of physical mail. Okay, I realize that I just made a completely idiotic statement like “when will someone figure out how to get rid of traffic?” but I am serious. I think the time of mail has past. There are services out there who will receive all of your mail then scan it and email it to you but those are expensive and seem like an unnecessary step. What someone needs to invent is a secure email address that is assigned by the post office (if they do in fact still need to exist) where senders would pay a tiny amount to guarantee secure delivery. While they are at it the same postal rules would apply. Send me some spam to that address then you are risking some mail fraud not just annoying me.

I realize that packages are still a thing but it looks like Amazon is making a run at monopolizing that space. And I’m not talking about stopping presents from magically appearing at my door. Its just the cranky misfits that deliver my mail seem like I am bothering them. In fact, the world in general appears to be in the way of my local postal workforce and their ultimate happiness. I thanked the mail dude today and he shot me a glance that looked like I mentioned something offensive. Sorry you cranky cold sore I’m not the one who sold you on the joys of government work so you can cram your bad attitude back down your blowhole. (said the guy in my head completely unconcerned about his important mail being thrown away every day)

I think someone better get on this quick because I have yet to meet a young go-getter in the postal service. I don’t think they have a very deep bench and if there is a waiting list I would bet that it syncs up rather nicely with all other governmental waiting registries. Postman or woman is not the glamour career it once was. In fact they could do themselves a big favor by making everyone reapply and interview with a panel of customers. Anyone not making it past the good mood test would be immediately replaced by a wounded veteran. Accommodations could be made and I would build a ramp to my mailbox if I knew the person delivering my bills appreciated the job and had already done more than I will ever do.

I’ll stop ranting now because I have a haystack of junk mail to sort through. A task made all the sweeter by the crabhole that delivered it.

 

Welcome

So the electrician was here again yesterday doing what he could while dodging rain storms. Who knew that opening up your exterior electrical service box during a downpour is asking for trouble? With no power I have to take and make work calls on the old cell phone. Not the end of the world but lack of internet means no computerized anything so I had me some time to kill between calls.

That’s when the salesmen from AT&T dropped by to let me know that their records indicated I no longer used their service. I stared straight at the kid who spoke for twenty-five excruciating seconds before what I assume to be his trainer stepped in. “he meant to ask you why you no longer used us.” Another statement not requiring communication from me by any standards of polite human discourse. so I waited.

The kid finally asked so I told him it was because the Uverse sucks. He was unprepared for this answer so his boss stepped in and asked what my problem with the service was… Ten minutes later I had given him my laundry list of issues and the findings of the last senior technician to visit my house who tole me I might have to wait a few years for things to improve.

The manager had now forgotten his trainee and tried to feed me some bullshit about fiber optic cable. I interrupted by telling him I was very familiar with my pole (yup, I know what I said just now and then when I did it the first time) and no one has run new cable anywhere in my block. He then told me that they were running this new magic cable to the nodes that distributed the cable to the neighborhood. He had no counter when I asked if he wasn’t just bringing the fire-hose closer to the  drinking straw that led to my house.

We went back and forth for the next fifteen minutes and it became very apparent that this trainer was not ready for a consumer who knew anything about his service. He shuffled his student away when I began to ask the kid how his new job was going. I wanted to know if he got anything per hour or if it was straight commission. The trainer dude turned red when I started telling his that if this gig didn’t work out there are tons of high paying jobs available in the trades for someone willing to work hard.

and then my phone rang.

I sit corrected

Sometimes the title of this blog is more true than others. I received an email letting me know that Beme does in fact allow you to save your video files to your phone and then I could try to upload them here. The nice email person didn’t say “try” I added that because it took me ten minutes to remember how to take a screenshot and I posted it in GIANT size unintentionally. So, the likelihood of me mastering all of those movable parts and turning them in to a consistent video presence on this site are slim to low.

BUT, I will say that the Beme thing would be an awesome way for me to take video of my hilarious friends and weird things I see while traveling without looking like a phone filming douche. Instead I will just look like I am in a constant state of cell-phone-pledge-of-allegiance. So note to my real life friends; If you see me with the phone pressed to my chest I am probably filming you NOT fending off my inevitable heart attack.

I should really try and film something now…

Okay, I had to save it then upload it to YouTube. I immediately regret the decision to post this video. The thumbnail explains my trepidation. I’m at a flattering angle wearing my work headset as I wait for a call and it looks like I’m having a brain even of some sort. You will also notice a random ceiling shot as I set the phone on its face with the app open and it started recording. Also you might notice me jerk my head to the right which would be an awesome tick but a creature jumped up on to my window and the movement momentarily sidetracked me.

squirrel!