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Wednesday, December 31, 2003
Kamikaze Lunchbreak Productions Presents: The Best / Worst of . . . ah, Fuck It. I Feel Like Shit.
I had such grand plans. Apparently, I didn't plan too well. I'm only at work because I had a number of projects that HAD to be done by today. And now they're done. And now I'm done.

No, not for good.

I'll be back Friday, if I'm still drawing breath by then. Hope you all *sniff* have a great New Years'. Drink one or five for me, eh?

Tuesday, December 30, 2003
Celebrity Deathmatch: Influenza vs. The Common Cold
I've had this goddamn cold for over a week now, which is fine . . . until I start getting a sore throat. I mean, I'm okay with not breathing, really, because I can always snort some nasal spray before I go to bed. But a sore throat? It sucks.

Michelle's had a sore throat for almost as long as I've been congested / sniffly. And she stayed home yesterday with what appeared to be the flu. Well, last night, my throat started hurting a lot. And I was tired. And achy. I had a rare headache (albeit a mild one). So, I'm thinking flu, right?

I took some Tylenol Flu Nighttime gel-caps and awoke feeling somewhat refreshed this morning. And now I know that the sore throat is related to my cold (i.e., drainage . . . a word you could surely do without, right?). Anyway, I'm sick and tired of being sick and tired. I just want whatever the fuck it is I have now to be over with already. Or something.

Monday, December 29, 2003
Sweet, Gentle Christmas!
It's interesting to reflect on the past several days in terms of where I began and where I ended up. Like waking up Christmas Eve to realize I still had gifts to buy and how Michelle and I would juggle Mia, do some last-minute shopping, and get ready for the Christmas Day marathon of social engagements. And how I was watching the Steelers and Ravens last night on ESPN, eating Runts and drinking St. Pauli Girl, secretly hoping that Jerome Bettis would run one up the middle and hit Ray Lewis, resulting in a career-ending injury for Mr. Lewis, and then follow that up with a jog up to the booth to punch Joe Theismann in the mouth for . . . well, basically, no reason.

So, you see, not much changed for me over Christmas. And I still have a cold. And Michelle still has a sore throat . . . may be coming down with something worse. But, at least, Mia's gotten over her viral fever (for the time being), even if she also has a cold.

I'm not gonna recount the laundry list of gifts that were received. Because I don't have the time. My boss is out and it's gonna be busy here for the next two and a half days. I'll try and keep up. You, too.

Tuesday, December 23, 2003
The Aftermath
First of all, thanks for all the well-wishes for our daughter. I took her to the doctor after she woke up from her nap at daycare on Friday. Ears, chest, and throat all checked out fine; she just had a slight sniffle and a hotter-than-teething temperature. Overnight, she got more uncomfortable and was more feverish and cranky on Saturday. Even with her cold symptoms getting worse, the fever seemed to be abating on Sunday, and she seemed to be coming out of it . . . but apparently not quick enough for her to go back to daycare yesterday. So I had to be with her, which is why I wasn't with all of you.

Now, back to Friday night (i.e., the train-wreck). It's funny that it should turn out so much worse than I could have possibly imagined. Michelle's bonus and raise thing turned out pretty well, as it was. We drove separately and met at the restaurant where her work Christmas party was.

I think I've gone into great detail about the history of my stomach and foods I try to avoid. Well, we're ushered into the banquet room . . . and procure our white wine choice (acidic). Then it's time for the hors d'ouvres: stuffed mushrooms (which I hate) and fried grouper fingers (with a wasabi-based dipping sauce . . . yum!). So, on an empty stomach, I'm pounding in the highly greasy grouper strips . . . several of them. This goes on for a while, creating a soup of grease and acidic wine. My entrée is a seafood tuttamare, with cheese tortellini and a heavy cream sauce. And some of Michelle's steak. I'd had a bit to drink, but not enough to force me to jog to the restroom, fall to my knees, and projectile spew (luckily, and cleanly, into the toilet).

I never recovered. I spent the rest of the time at the dinner in a fog, listening to attorney speeches about the past year and muttering in my head (and outloud), "I blame the grouper fingers." (Incidentally, that would've been on my fuckin' tombstone had I died for some reason that night.)

Long story short, Michelle drives me home after I get pitying looks from her co-workers. I get to bed and pass out. I don't really recover very quickly, though, and I spend much of the next 12 hours sleeping, trying to stave off nausea, throwing up, and trying to stave off some more nausea. A full day after the whole cycle began, I was still feeling somewhat queasy and run-down.

I've never been one of those people who smartly throws up before they pass out at night to keep their bodies from soaking up all the poison in their stomachs. No, because I hate to throw up, I keep it all in and hope (and pray) that everything will work out. Sometimes it does, but not this time. I don't want to hear / taste / think about these things for a while: Riesling, tortellini, cream sauce, and (of course) grouper fingers.


In other news, the Holidays begin in earnest tomorrow. Starting Christmas Eve-ning, there are over 24 hours worth of planned activities and social gatherings. Oh, yeah, and sleep. I'll try and stop by again sometime over the weekend. Next week, I'm thinking of doing some sort of trendy, year-end Top 10 / "Best of" lists. And after that . . . Resolutions.

Oh, yeah. Get ready, kiddies.

So, Happy Holidaysâ„¢ and I'll see you soon.

Friday, December 19, 2003
This Can Only End Badly
My wife has been the center of some salary and bonus negotiations this week. There's been a steady decline of morale in her law firm's secretarial staff. Tonight is the firm's Christmas dinner. With an open bar.

After that, my wife's band is playing a show. Headlining.

Add to this a possibly sick baby that will likely be going to the doctor as soon as the daycare calls to tell me she's awake and still feverish, and the grandparents that will be watching said baby tonight while we're on-board the doomed-to-wreck train.

We'll let you know how things turned out this weekend after the rescuers recover our bodies.

Thursday, December 18, 2003
The Tree
You probably aren't surprised that there are rules of decorum when it comes to the Kamikaze Christmas tree. And the fact that we have an artificial tree doesn't really change anything . . . except that no-one can forget to water the tree and transform that symbol of Holiday spirit into a potential fire hazard.

Here are the rules:

1. The tree shall only have white / clear lights, and none of the lights shall blink in any way. (This is Michelle's rule.)

2. After the lights are on the tree, then we put on the shiny balls. Most of ours are silver. These should be spaced out as evenly as possible, and should be positioned so as to reflect as much light as possible.

3. No tinsel can go on the tree because the cats will eat it, and it could kill them.

4. Next come the individual / unique ornaments. Several of these have been collected over the years, and some date back to very early in our respective childhoods.* (The unwritten rule is that you hang those most special to you.)

5. It's traditional for me to drink egg nog while decorating the tree. And usually we listen to Christmas music, but this year we had on a football game. There may have been Christmas music playing, too.


After my parents divorced and I started getting my own Christmas trees, my mother gave me several of "my" ornaments. Some of these were from the "mouse" series that she purchased from a co-worker when she worked for the state. For several years, she purchased three ornaments that had a mouse character: one for me, her, and dad. She’d have our names put on them with the year. The three that I have are from 1982, 1985, and a Seminole mouse (year unknown). The 1982 "mouse" is in a stocking, and it's a pretty sacred ornament. The Seminole mouse is placed on the tree according to how our team is doing; this year, we were 10-2, so the mouse is in the front and pretty high up. (Last year, it was about halfway up the tree, down the branch a little ways, and kind-of tucked to one of the sides of the tree.)


There's a little geek in me that got all hot and bothered when my (non-sci fi / non-fantasy / non-action movie watching) wife IM'd me this message: "i want to go see the lord of the rings this weekend." I'm sure some of you understand. (Now, she did watch the other two, which we now own on DVD. Personally, I wanted to re-watch the first two before seeing the third, but you can't pass these moments up, right?)

Wednesday, December 17, 2003
Welcome to the North Pole (Courtesy of Governer's Square Mall)
I don’t remember whether my parents ever took me to see Santa Claus at the mall, but I’m sure they did. Maybe I’ve blocked it out. Or I’ve forgotten the pictures they had taken. Or something.

Michelle wanted to take Mia to see Santa and have her picture taken with him. Now, I wasn’t against it, but a small part of me was dreading it. Would she slap Santa? Cry uncontrollably? I really hate embarrassing and/or uncomfortable situations. And, like the it’s-gonna-happen-someday trip to Disney World, I didn’t think she’d get anything out of it just yet.

So, we ventured to the mall last night. Weeknights are the best times for this type of activity, as one might guess. As it turned out, we only had one kid in front of us. While we waited, we talked to the “photographer” (let’s go ahead and use that term loosely, shall we?). Did we want to purchase a photo package? Why, yes . . . sure. We went with a "Family Value Package" . . . Package B, in fact, which included a 5x7, two 3x5s, and four wallets . . . for about $25.

When it was our turn to approach Santa, I let Michelle take Mia while I stayed back. Mia wasn’t too interested in the ol’ guy. I went over to “help,” but I guess that just further complicated things. So, Santa suggested that we could all be in the picture. I sat on one side with Mia in my lap, and Michelle sat on the other. When we got our instant, computer-generated “prints,” I mistakenly thought we got the picture on a disk. (That was after I thought, “What the fuck did we pay $25 for?”) So, we shelled out the additional $5 to get a disk so that we could share the picture with the world. And here it is.*


* It should be noted that Michelle and I were not anticipating being in the picture, and we’re coming off a day of work, although that might not explain the strange, somewhat-smarmy look on my face. Michelle is her usual perky, photogenic self. And early evening isn’t exactly Mia’s most lively time, which goes a long way in explaining the bewildered look she has. But Santa . . . man, that fuckin’ guy looks great!

Tuesday, December 16, 2003
One of Those Weekends (And Then Some)
Yes, it was. Y’know, when you’re feeling tired and defeated, the Holiday Season™ is whipping around the turns at 80 and trying to find another gear, and you’re stuck knowing that if you want to drink (and live to tell about it) then you have to actually mix something? You kind-of feel like you’re about to start a 100-yard dash while hung over and after someone named Jeff whacks you on the knee with a steel pipe. And you have no more beer to hair-of-the-dog (it’s a verb now . . . don’t you keep up?).

Actually, it wasn’t all that bad. And rather than giving you the blow-by-blow as a proper prose exposition (which is how this began), I’ll revert to the tried-and-true list system:

-- We did a little bit of our Christmas shopping. Michelle’s obsessed with getting her family and friends out of the way so she can say, “I’m done,” while I’m left to panic and flail about. I did, however, make a trip to Target to do some gift shopping . . . mainly because I knew I was going to be going to a Super Wal-Mart later for groceries and more gifts, and I wanted to maintain the discount-megastore balance. (Sidenote: Here in Tallahassee, we have two Super Wal-Marts, a regular Wal-Mart, and a Sam’s Club. But we only have one Target, which we frequent as much as we can because it’s cool. There’s a rumor that they’re gonna make the Target a superstore. *crosses fingers*)

-- I did the taking-mom-grocery-shopping thing on Saturday (because she’s not supposed to be driving, and I’ve had her minivan anyway). I had the requisite / ill-advised Taco Bell for lunch afterwards. Later, I went to Sam’s Club and bought exactly two things (a big ol’ box of diapers and a 24-pack of Diet Coke . . . nothing for me). This brings me to my discussion of grocery shopping. To fulfil our grocery-shopping needs, Michelle and I frequent four stores: Publix (convenient for general grocery-item purchases), the Wal-Mart Superstore (general grocery store items that, for whatever reason, we can’t get at Publix, and at cheaper prices), New Leaf Market (a co-op where we get our Thai Kitchen noodles [ethnic, high-class Ramen], soy jerky [which most people think tastes like dog food, but we love], and overpriced faux-meat frozen dinners . . . actually the whole store is overpriced, which is why we call it “New Thief”), and Sam’s Club (for bulk grocery items and lower wine prices . . . this mostly [lazily] amounts to cat litter, soda, diapers, bottles of Martini & Rossi, and Frosted Mini Wheats [for snacks].) And let’s not even discuss how I drive by two perfectly good grocery stores to get to our favorite Publix, or how the closest Super Wal-Mart is just a couple miles from our house, but we drive to the one on the “good side of town,” which is significantly further. And don’t even get me started on “Club” Publix near campus, where the median age of the shoppers is 20.

-- Deep breath. It’s like that Dennis Miller line . . . “Stop me before I sub-reference again!”

-- We were two weeks behind on getting our Christmas tree, so that was the Prime Objective™ for the weekend. First we went to Lowe’s, and they were mostly out of 7-to-8-foot trees. Home Depot had more of them, but they looked pretty ghetto and/or dried out. It was then that we decided to go artificial. (Gasp!) So, we ambled down the road to the Overpriced Gardening Store™ just to see what they had. To start with, they had real trees for 50% more than the ones we looked at. Wandering through the store, we stumbled on a 7.5-foot artificial tree regularly priced at about $120 and on sale for $70 . . . but the sale had ended a few days earlier. Still, $120 is pretty good for a halfway real-looking fake tree, so we arranged to have it meet us at the register (we didn’t have to offer to by it drinks, either). Long story short, we got it for the sale price. I made sure not to say anything during the entire transaction for fear that they’d be, like, “Oooooo, sorry Mr. Lunchbreak. That tree went off sale three days ago.” Michelle and I exchanged cautious glances instead.

-- We went to dinner to celebrate (with the money we’d “saved”) at the infamous Lucy Ho’s for their Saturday night dinner buffet, which includes sushi. And kids eat free, so Mia got to slop lots of noodles and eat some partly congealed egg-drop soup.

-- Apparently, I was supposed to start working on the tree while Michelle was at band practice but, instead, I watched this movie.

All in all . . . yeah, you're asleep. Wake up, fucker! Geez.

Monday, December 15, 2003
Law for Kids
Ms. Styro says, "Let's all be safe out there." Go here to find out how.

My favorite is the one about the "chronic."

Friday, December 12, 2003
The Results are In!
Sorry this is later than the promised noon o'clock posting, but I was busily toiling away for The Man.

Here are the winners of the Choppa quiz:

1. Kyle (all five correct)
2. Ryan (all five correct)
3. Mrs. Dayment (four correct)
4. Queen Styro (two correct, but she gets a CD anyway)

I feel a little bad as I've unintentionally disparaged the top two winners. Ryan got "chief-ed" in my congratulatory e-mail, and it turns out that Kyle is a Kansas State fan (or student?). Real shame on the latter, because we here at Kamikaze Lunchbreak refuse to support teams that begin playing Division-1A football teams in mid-October.


Y'know how the Friday after Thanksgiving is supposedly the biggest shopping day of the year? Well, in the Kamikaze household, it's the two weekends before Christmas. We usually have our tree by now, so add that to the heap. It's gonna be a festive hectic weekend!

"Get some!"

Thursday, December 11, 2003
First of all, today is Michelle’s 30th birthday. Drop her a line. Let’s see if we can max out her Hotmail account with good wishes.


We went to lunch yesterday at everyone’s favorite Tallahassee’s only provincial French restaurant. We were seated next to a large group of XYZ’ers who were sharing the same waiter. And they were loud, too.

Michelle: “Maybe we should start loudly saying obscene things.”

Scott: “So, basically, just start talking.”


My favorite exchange from the New Orleans trip was on the way back. Mr. ADD was half-joking about reasons for breaking up with his girlfriend (who was sitting right next to him).

Mr. ADD: “There’s just too much ‘tang out there. And not the orange kind, either.”

Scott: “Well, some of them could be orange.”

Mr. ADD: “Oh, there would be lots of colors.”

Scott: “So, a rainbow of ‘tang.”


It’s neat how you can check your referrer’s log to see what sites people are visiting from. (Yeah, this is new to me, people . . . bear with me.) So, I clicked on a couple links that I wasn’t familiar with. I’m adding Charlie to my blogroll, as well as Leo’s recommended indie web-comic at Questionable Content. And Kevynn.

Wednesday, December 10, 2003
I Know How to Pick ‘Em
In school, we were taught that, when writing, you should always keep in mind who your audience is. And now that I’m out of school and still working in / practicing the joys of the English language, “Know Your Audience” has become the Golden Rule™.

Of course, I don’t always adhere to that rule, as will be demonstrated by the following post. Yes, kids, it’s more sports talk.

If you remember, just before the college-football season started, I made ten predictions about the upcoming season. Five of them centered on FSU (my alma mater) and the other five were more general. Here are the predictions, with commentary on how they played out:

-- “FSU will lose at least two games this season, but no more than four.”
Well, FSU is currently 10-2, so even if they lose their bowl game, that’s only three losses. Score one for me.

-- “Most / all of FSU's losses will be indirectly (and accurately) blamed on Jeff Bowden.”
This is a tough one. As awful as Jeff Bowden is as an offensive coordinator, we somehow managed to eke out quite a successful season. He has us firmly back in the we’re-the-Seminoles-and-we-can-be-unimaginative-and-still-beat-you realm for sure, but at least we executed better this season. Anyway, the loss to Miami could be blamed on Chris Rix . . . and/or the rain. The loss to Clemson? Could it be some intra-Bowden conspiracy? I guess, to be fair, I missed this one. A little bit. The jury’s still out on ol’ Jeffy.

-- “FSU will beat either Miami or Notre Dame, but not both.”
We lost to Miami and beat (the Christ out of) Notre Dame. Technically, we could beat Miami in the Orange Bowl, and I guess then I’d be wrong. But let’s say that I had no idea that the BCS would end up putting us and Miami in a bowl game opposite each other. I should’ve known, I suppose.

-- “FSU will not win the ACC and, thus, will not go to a New Year's Day bowl.”
Guess I was wrong here, huh? Geez.

-- “FSU will finish the season ranked just inside the Top 20 (maybe in the 17-to-19 range).”
I think we’re around #10 right now. If we lost to Miami (#9), we’d likely only drop a few spots. So, in the worst-case scenario, I guess I’d be correct with this prediction, but I’d venture that we’ll end up better off than that, even with a loss.

-- “Neither Miami nor Ohio State will be in the National Championship game.”

-- “Oklahoma and/or Notre Dame will be in there (the latter most likely due to some stupid BCS loophole).”
Couldn’t have been more wrong about those silly Catholic kids, but Oklahoma saved me on this one . . . but only technically.

-- “Notre Dame will only lose one game this season; if they lose to FSU, it’ll be two games. (And I will continue to hate them, although I will respect them. Unless they play for the National Championship, and then I’ll just hate them.)”
Wow. Dead fuckin’ wrong.

-- “Kansas State players will be at home on New Year's Day, fucking their large, corn-fed girlfriends.”
So, they’ll be in Arizona instead, fucking God-knows-what. I spent the whole season making fun of them, chastising them as pretenders for playing, essentially, nobody. And then they go and beat Oklahoma to win the Big 12. A small part of me is elated that we didn’t have to go to Tempe and get our asses whipped by the very team that I’ve been disrespecting all season long.

-- “People will continue to whine that there isn’t a playoff system.”
This season has become Exhibit A for why the BCS doesn’t work. And, until now, I’ve been defending it to all my playoff-hungry friends.

In summary, I was correct on six out of ten. Not too bad for a casual fan shooting his mouth off, especially considering some of those picks were pretty specific. Probably not gonna get me on ESPN Sportscenter, though.


In other news, I’ve begun using the site-traffic tracking system recommended by Leo. Now I can be like the other cool kids and share web stats and the funny searches I pop up on. So far, it’s been pretty boring. I’ll keep you posted.

And, if you know Amy Choppa and/or you want a CD, check out the quiz from yesterday (below).

Tuesday, December 09, 2003
Lessons in Emo
Okay, here it is. This is your chance to win a Kamikaze-crafted, Choppa-centric mix CD. It’s all about the emo, kids. That’s right, this CD dishes out some bad-ass melodic rock in the first two “movements,” and then mixes it up during the last two. It’s 17 songs. You want this.

Remember: These questions were written by Amy Choppa. Here we go:

1. Who will never ‘blog you?

2. What is the best week on television?

3. Which animal in the Choppa barnyard represented Spigot Steve?

4. What skill does Amy Choppa wish she had that most boys are born with?

5. Who uttered the quote that first prompted the word “penis” to appear on The Choppa?

You can e-mail (link on the left) your answers to me, or you can lazily put them in my comments. The first three people to get them all correct (as if) are guaranteed to get a CD. If no-one gets all five correct by, oh, this Friday at noon, we’ll go with the first three people that get the most correct.

And, incidentally, Queen Styro gets a CD no matter how well she does. And if she earns it on the quiz, then that’s one less for the rest of you. Yes, I’m a mean bastard . . . sometimes. Go cry to CW and see how much sympathy you get.

Monday, December 08, 2003
The Comedown
I have a confession: I’ve never really liked New Orleans. I mean, I’ve been there a handful of times, and I feel like I’ve seen enough to have an informed opinion. My friend lived there for a while and I visited a few times, getting to see the real New Orleans . . . which I didn’t like. So, when Michelle mentioned she’d rather go there for her birthday than to the beach (which I also don’t care for) . . . well, it was six of one, half dozen the other.

This past weekend didn’t really change my view of New Orleans. I expanded my horizons a little . . . y’know, stepping outside the French Quarter more. We visited Harrah’s casino (more than once), had brunch at Elizabeth’s, and ate dinner at a non-chain (I think) hotel fern bar in the Garden District. Of course, we also did the standard stuff (i.e., shopping in the French Quarter, drinking on Bourbon Street, having beignets at Café du Monde, riding on the St. Charles streetcar). We also took in a Placebo show. All in all, it was pretty eventful. Of course, “eventful” comes at a price. Observe (yeah, you knew this was going to devolve into some sort of list):

-- Driving over with our best friend-couple was pretty standard . . . lots of squabbling about music and gossiping about our common friends, enemies . . . and frenemies.

-- My mom’s van started acting up once we got to their hotel, prompting the oh-God-I’m-going-to-spend-half-the-trip-at-a-mechanic-getting-fucked-in-the-ass quandary. Luckily, we decided it wasn’t such a big problem. (Incidentally, driving without the air conditioner will hide the fact that your mom’s van really needs a tune-up.)

-- It’s pretty common for French Quarter restaurants to be overpriced compared to the quantity / quality of food you’d receive at similar restaurants outside the Quarter. However, this isn’t true across the board. For instance, we had reasonably priced meals at GumbOlaya and Coop’s that were quite excellent and filling.

-- I’m not sure exactly what the correct response to this situation is but, when your friend taps you on the shoulder and directs your attention to the barmaid right in front of you with two test-tube shots in her mouth, the correct response is not to panic, look at your wife wide-eyed, panic some more, stutter confused mutterings, ask the how much the shots are, or finally take the open ends of the shots with your mouth, then drop down so that you are drinking the shots while the barmaid still has them in her mouth. No, that’s just not right.

-- If you give the aforementioned barmaid a $20 bill and hope to get change, she’s just gonna smile at you and tuck the $20 bill into her cleavage. And if it’s the only cash you have on you, and you ask for it back and give her $5 in ones that your friend hands you, well . . . you look like a big fuckin’ pansy.

-- After walking into a real-life casino for the first time in your life, it might take you a little while to get the courage to actually gamble.

-- Starting out by playing $20 at the $5-minimum roulette table might give you a false sense of security, especially if you play for 20 or 30 minutes and cash out only down $2. Because when you come back the next day and there is no $5-minimum table, you might add $20 to the $18 you have left from the previous adventure and lose it all in 15 minutes or less. And then y’know what? Yeah, you’re gonna be too chicken shit to gamble any more. Pussy-ass.

-- Having a “hand-grenade” your first night on Bourbon Street will probably prevent you from doing the same on subsequent nights. My first night was a pint of Abita Amber followed by a hand-grenade, and then the test-tube shots (see above). The next night (The Big Drinking Night™) went something like Sweettart “daiquiri,” draft beer in a plastic cup, kamikaze shooter, and another beer; I feel like I left out a drink or three, but that’s how I remember it.

-- The drive home, we chose to not use the stereo in addition to the air conditioner, so we had lots of debates. The subject of gay marriage turned to polygamy turned to abortion turned to moving to Canada turned to displaying the Ten Commandments in Alabama court houses turned to Kansas State beating Oklahoma turned back to gay marriage . . . ad infinitum, rinse and repeat.

All in all, it was a good trip . . . y’know, New Orleans apathy aside.


You know how some attorneys can bill their secretaries' time for their work? Well, I billed the copier’s time this morning while I was writing this post and reading other sites. I’d send nine copies of a 99-page appendix to print and then ‘blog for a bit while it was printing. Then I’d collate, print the next appendix, and ‘blog some more. I’m gonna be sad when this project is done.


Tomorrow . . . noon o’clock: Choppa quiz. You know what this means.

Wednesday, December 03, 2003
The Big (Not So) Easy
It’s finally that time. My wife, Michelle, is about to turn 30. We’re going to New Orleans for the weekend to celebrate her birthday. For those of you with a calendar, her birthday celebration will start tomorrow and end a week from this Sunday. (Her actual birthday is a week from tomorrow . . . long story.)

Anyway, I’m hoping for two things: 1) that there will be lots of interesting stories to tell, and 2) that I have time to tell the stories. Whether more than five or six of you are here to read it is irrelevant, I guess. Let’s just say our trip will be vodka-soaked blog-worthy and leave it at that.

This will be the last trip we take without our little Mia. We were originally going to take her but her surrogate parents Michelle’s parents said she’d probably be happier not going.

Speaking of Miss Mia, here’s a picture of her wearing a hat made my our dear friend, Amy Choppa:

Now, I’ve received a five-question quiz from Amy that will be used to weed out the unworthy for another CD giveaway. (Yes, this one’s been a long time coming.) The quiz will most likely be posted around noon (EST) next Tuesday (December 9). I know, I know . . . Amy said it would be tomorrow. But that was before I realized how much crap I’d have to get done before going out of town. I’ll have something more definite next Monday, but go ahead and pencil me in.

In the meantime, I still have a handful of CDs to send out for the previous distribution. I’m sure you’re all mighty thankful. Or something.

I’ll see you all very soon.

Tuesday, December 02, 2003
Salmonella, Here I Come!
Someone left some sort of pumpkin-cream pie out on the counter in the kitchenette outside my office. By the time I went to lunch, it had been there for a good little while, but I took a piece anyway. The first bite tasted a little off, so I shit-canned the rest of it.

I proofed / edited too many health brochures at my last job, and I’m big on the 2-40-140 Rule* (much to everyone’s annoyance).


I had my semiannual dental cleaning this morning. I know she really likes these, but I hate them. No matter how pleasant the staff is, it basically amounts to someone coming at me with a sharp, stainless-steel hook. No, really.

Still, the last couple / few visits have been cavity-free, so maybe my view will shift. (Although, my gums are “recessing” in a couple places, and I have a mysterious “shadow” between a couple of my teeth that could be decay. I chose the “wait-six-months-and-see” option for that one.)


I got an 83.5 on this quiz. And, apparently, I was born between Woodstock and “Just Say No.”


She’s back . . . again. It just goes to show you can’t keep a good ‘Poo down. Or something like that.

In other blogroll news, I’m gonna trim it back some, I think. Some people have stopped writing, or I’ve stopped going to see if they’re still writing. Really, time is limited, so I can’t keep up with everyone. Sorry, Jason Royal. (Perhaps I should add Kevynn Malone to offset the loss, eh?)


* It’s something like this: Don’t eat anything that’s been out (and uncovered) for more than two hours between the temperatures of 40 and 140 (Fahrenheit, for our Canadian / international readers.)

Monday, December 01, 2003
A Thanksgiving to (Not) Remember
This wasn’t one of the more memorable Thanksgivings in my 32 years . . . or one of the better ones. But here are some of the things I do remember from the past five or six days:

-- Driving from Tallahassee to Atlanta to Huntsville to Atlanta to Tallahassee is roughly 1,000 miles. The way we went, anyway.

-- I cooked Wednesday night . . . sort-of. Tri-color pasta rotini with parma rosa sauce (from a packet). And lots of beer.

-- When you’re driving in Huntsville, you get very little notice when there is a junction / exit for the highway you need to turn onto.

-- As a game for myself, I was going to count the number of times various family members uttered their signature catchphrases in the 24 hours we were in Huntsville, but I forgot to keep track. I do remember at least two instances of “I love it!” from my mother in law. (You really need to hear it to get the full effect.)

-- I know I have a foul mouth and periodically offend people with the “fucks” and “goddammits.” Why aren’t people around me equally offended by the n-word?

-- Thanksgiving night, after all the pro football was over, we were searching for things to watch. We settled on re-runs of Friends. (I couldn’t convince anyone that we needed to watch the Knicks-Pacers game.)

-- None of us woke up and went shopping Friday morning. That whole scene is really getting out of hand. Soon, the “door-buster” sales are going to start at midnight, fer Christ’s sake!

-- I hate those arguments where, at the outset, you’re so sure you’re right or you have a point worth arguing, but when things get to the “cold war” stage, you’re not quite sure it was worth fighting about . . . ever. That sucks.

-- During our embarrassing and hastily planned and executed departure Saturday (there’s an apology in there somewhere), I ripped my knuckle open in the cold, dry air while pushing a feeding chair into the trunk of the car. My skin literally peeled back like paper.

-- Yesterday, Michelle’s parents’ cat leapt off my lap and pushed off on my hand, scratching two of my fingers. Now my right hand is gnarled. How am I going to play guitar tonight?

-- The Seminoles beat the Gators Saturday in the best game of that rivalry’s past five games.

-- We’re gonna clean our house, dammit (oh, goddammit). We’re tired of going to other people’s clean and tastefully decorated houses. To that end, we did some cleaning yesterday. It’s gonna be a process.

I can’t remember any more. And I’m tired of trying. Lunchbreak over. Back to work.