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Friday, September 30, 2005
Four Days into That 35th Year
I'd planned some R&R for this birthday week, but it didn't materialize. Not really. I did take off a day and a half . . . but that time was spread across five days. I left work for a few hours here and a couple hours there, in between projects and other distractions. (You, The Internets, were not much of a distraction. Sorry.)

Michelle got back from the "tour" Monday evening. Tuesday, we went to dinner with family. I got a few CDs, including one from Michelle that she bought in Charlotte when they played with this band. (Definitely mix CD material.)

The rest of the week was spent running errands and spending birthday money. Most of the money has been promised to a music store in return for customizing one of my guitars. The one that I haven't been playing, but will play when it's done. Because it will be bad ass.

In other news, we're hip-deep in Project: New Heater. I'd gotten an encouraging first set of quotes, but today's contractor brought up a whole 'nother set of issues which will necessitate more quotes. Perhaps talking to an independent electrician. Goddamn 1960s house! Nasty-ass fuel-oil furnace!

Tuesday, September 27, 2005
Fashion Week
After reading about the recent "fashion week" that the shitheel, self-congratulatory, mutual-masturbatory clothiers sprayed all over the pages of In Style et al, I came up with the pointless insipid gaybo brilliant idea to catalogue my looks during the week (last week). Probably would have been a lot easier to do with Michelle here to take the pictures but, y'know, you go to war with the army you have.

To explain the innerworkings of my wardrobe would really amp up the freakishness of my reputation, and probably cause Michelle to Baker Act me. Let's just say that there IS a "system" in place to keep the clothes clean and to prevent me from wearing the same clothes every week.

Our office is very casual to business-casual. Seriously, on my most dressed-down day, I'm approximately 57% more over-dressed than the average guy. But, y'know, it's all geologists and engineers who do manly work. So, anyway, I don't believe in owning clothes and not wearing them someplace. Because, y'know, I might not always be working here.*

The theory is simple: Where most offices have "casual Friday," I make Friday the most casual day and work towards that. It's a process.

Things start off fairly stiff and loosen up from there. Click on the picture for a tour. Noted on the photos are details about what I'm wearing and (generally) where it came from. The Rivers plastic-surgery-nightmare twins would be so proud.

* Let's not get all frothy about me leaving my job, boss. I can't even get it together enough to update my resume.

Friday, September 23, 2005
Percussive Maintenance
When your washer gets unbalanced and starts to bang (very loudly) during its spin cycle, your first thought probably isn't to run towards it, jump in the air, and kick it really hard. In fact this might sound like a very bad idea . . . something only a crazy person would do. A crazy person with lots of towels to dry up the water that comes out of the washer during the rinse cycle because the drain pipe came disconnected somewhere between the banging and the kicking.

Funnier still might be when the crazy person is washing the sopping-wet towels from the morning's flood and the drain pipe comes loose all by itself. So now we're dipping into the clean towels. Well . . . not we. The crazy person.

In other news, I finally understand how single parents feel. Michelle's been on tour for, what . . . all of two days. I'll be getting a break tomorrow, which is the day before my mom's birthday. Which is two days before my own birthday. I guess when you're on the verge of turning 34 and you're still angrily kicking your washing machine, perhaps it's time for some sort of life assessment. Assessment. Reminds me that I brought home several hours of work.

Mothers: Lock up your laundry appliances!

Wednesday, September 21, 2005
I've discovered during my first-thing-in-the-morning, exercise-bike sessions that it takes me about 20 minutes to "read" an issue of People magazine or ESPN: The Magazine. Granted, the latter was chock-full of lengthy articles on Hurricane Katrina (?), Golf (zzzzz), and NASCAR (!!!); in fact, most of the time I spent reading it was on the one page dedicated to soccer.

Monday, September 19, 2005
Fall Cleaning
In case you've been living under a rock (or, like Styro, you don't have cable television), the season/series premieres are about to start for many, many shows. There are some interesting (looking) ones . . . and a lot of Grade-A, surefire crap. How will I figure out what's going to be this season's Lost (vs. this season's first show to be cancelled)? The magic of the DVR.

Yeah, it's not TiVo, but we do have a DVR that holds roughly 30 hours of programming. This morning, it was 70% full. You do the math. I decided to purge some stuff I've been holding onto for whatever reason. Here's what went bye-bye:
1 episode of The X-Files ("Home" . . . with the murderous family of mutants)
2 episode of The Kids in the Hall
1 episode of Futurama
1 episode of Entourage
1 episode of Mad TV
1 episode of TV Funhouse
1 episode of Dora the Explorer (the one introducing "backpack")
1 episode of Sesmame Street
1 episode of The Surreal Life
2 installments of The Daily Show
1 episode of Samurai Jack
1 episode of Kathy Griffin: My Life on the D-List
1 episode of The Ultimate Fighter
1 episode of ESPN's coverage of the World Series of Poker

I hadn't seen most of these, and I figured I probably wasn't going to make the time. So, now we're down to 38%. I scanned what we had left. Besides a couple things that are Michelle's, there are three episodes each of Dora and the Powerpuff Girls and four episodes of Aqua Teen Hunger Force.

That Mia . . . can't enough of the wacky animation.

In other news, thanks for all the positive energy for my crazy-ass mom. Okay, so she's not really crazy; in fact, I think I'm picking her up in a few short hours to take her home. We'll see how that works out.

Also, I'm thinking that this week will be Fashion Week here at Kamikaze Lunchbreak.

Thursday, September 15, 2005
I Wanna Be Sedated
“What time is it?”

“It’s 8:31.”


“What time is it?”

“It’s 8:35.”


“What time is it?”

“Why do you need to know?”

“I’m not wearing my watch, but you have a watch on.”

“It’s 8:45.”



Tuesday was strange to say the least. We were back at the emergency room again. “We” being my mom and I . . . and her friend, Mr. S.

I’d seen mom at lunch that day and she was acting a little . . . off. By the afternoon, she was calling me repeatedly at work and accusing me of all kinds of stuff and then she’d start babbling people’s names. I had to hang up on her once when our “conversation” devolved into her chanting, “Mom and dad. Mom and dad. Mom and dad. Mom and dad.” She actually called me back and gave me a few more “Mom and dads” before hanging up on me. Soon after, she called Mr. S and did a lot of the same stuff. He went over to her house and she was still acting strangely, so he said he’d try to get her to go to her HMO’s Urgent Care Center and I'd meet them there. Well, that didn’t happen. I was on the way over a little later, so I called him and he said he’d try one more time to get her to go and then he was calling 911.

I showed up at her place the same time as the sheriff’s deputy and ambulance. There was already a fire truck there. For 20 minutes, we negotiated with her to go to the hospital and had to threaten her with a ride in the sheriff-mobile if she refused to go.

I signed her in at 8:00 and we were in the waiting room for just over three hours. The whole time, we were having variations of the same conversation. She was convinced that it was 4:40 (what time she remembered Mr. S coming to her place) and that if she went to sleep, everyone she loved would die. That’s when I realized that she hadn’t slept in about five days.

She ultimately started refusing treatment, so I told the RN to call me when her tests came back and I went home to bed. (That was at 1:15 a.m.) They Baker Acted her shortly after and she’s (back) at the hospital’s behavioral health unit being evaluated.

We’re guessing that she just needed sleep. I saw her for a little bit yesterday evening, and she said she’d slept for half the day. She seemed somewhat better. She didn’t say “God” once.

In other (more sane) news, Reverse Survivor has started anew. Okay, maybe that’s not “more sane.”

Sunday, September 11, 2005
Wine Score

Saturday was party day for us. First, it was a toddler's birthday for Mia and I. Then, that evening, Michelle and I attended a blind wine tasting to determine the wines to served at a friend's wedding. I'd never been to such an event, and I'm a bit of a wine 'tard, so I was quite enthusiastic. The capper for the night was another friend's party which featured a college-throwback atmosphere, complete with a keg of Yuengling. The keg and I were too well acquainted and, thus, I was very hungover this morning.

Thursday, September 08, 2005
I'm wearing my wedding ring again.

I had to take it off for a week and a half or so because one night, I was cleaning up in the kitchen and I reached to turn off a light. Well, the light switch location required that I navigate my left hand (never agile) between the bottom of a cupboard and the top of the toaster oven. And I caught the bottom of the cupboard with the ring, which pushed into my finger and shaved off the top layer(s) of skin.

Even then, with my still-to-scab wound, I felt bad about not wearing the ring. I finally put it back on this morning and it's been fine.

In other news, our ISP was fucking with us, telling us that our modem wasn't connecting to their system for some reason. And/or telling us there was a "hold" on our account and we had to clear it up with their billing department. So we've been Internet-less for the past several days (at home, anyway). Work's been work, so I haven't been in touch with you (all of you). I'll try to remedy that now that our Internet service has mysteriously (magically) been restored.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005
"I Want Your Skulls. I Need Your Skulls."
On my way back to work, I was stopped at a red light and could hear some odd-sounding music coming from somewhere other than my stereo. It sounded like fragmented cheering and seemed to be coming from my right. There was a Jeep with the top down next to me and I looked that the driver, who was looking back at me with a smug “fuck you” expression. I turned down my stereo and realized the odd-sounding music was The Misfits.

We really went all-out last night for the FSU game. I went to the grocery store to secure over $90 in snacks, including four kinds of cheese, four kinds of crackers, a bottle of cheap champagne and cheaper Riesling, tortilla chips, queso dip (in a jar), key lime pie, a six pack of Red Stripe, and some peanuts. I didn’t know how many people to expect, so I went kind-of insane, I guess. We ordered pizza beforehand, so there was enough food for a couple dozen people, rather than the half-dozen who were there. And half of those people left to go to bed early (even when leaving was just walking the length of the house to the bedroom).

Exciting game, though. Y’know, if "exciting" is watching your alma mater and their most hated rivals fight to see who wants to lose the most. Alas, Miami snatched defeat from the jaws of victory, and I went to bed, bloated and tired. With a refrigerator full of cheese and leftover bread sticks.

Friday, September 02, 2005
Not the Time to be Pro-Choice
I haven’t been to fill up my car since the gas-bingeing started, but several stations in town have completely run out of gas. A couple on my way to work had reportedly run out, but I noticed the pumps were all in use (again) at lunch today. And the signs indicated just one price (one was $2.99 and the other was $3.09). I’m oddly comforted that there’s only one grade of gas available. That’s, like, just one less decision I have to make.

We’re hoping for a relaxing weekend here at Kamikaze Central. We’re staying at Michelle’s parents’ house tonight because they’re out of town and we’re watching their pets. And eating their food. I might even treat myself to some Jim Beam while I’m there. Y’know, to go with the news coverage from New Orleans.

Don’t know what’s going on tomorrow, but I imagine there will be a lot of sports-watching. As I’m running the college football pool for the office, I have to keep abreast of 20 games (which is a light week . . . usually it’s 25 or 30 games). Also, tomorrow night, there’s another World Cup qualifier for the U.S. men’s soccer team. Against Mexico. So, I’ll probably be all up in some Univision.

And, of course, Monday is Labor Day. Or, more accurately, The Day When the Seminoles Kick Off Another Disappointing Season. No predictions this year. Although I will say that I picked the ‘Canes for the Monday night game . . . 24-10.

If only the president had picked the ‘Canes. Or, y’know, been aware of at least ONE of them.

Which reminds me, CW is back with a great Bush-rant. And Amy Choppa has returned from camp. Stop by and say, “Hi.” To them.