Toney is now working from home. She does customer service for a giant company, and is on some sort of dedicated team that only takes calls from a certain type of customer. It’s all very mysterious to me. But the new assignment came with a hefty (and welcome) bump in pay, and the opportunity to do everything from the relative comfort of home. It’ll be pretty sweet when there are 17 inches of snow outside.
She’s been in training for a few weeks, and finally started working on her own today. There’s a big desk set up in our bedroom, with all manner of Batcave-style electronics on it, including a crazy monitor that must be three feet tall. It’s a pretty wild setup.
Unfortunately, this week she has to start at 8 am. Next week it’ll be 9:30, and I should be out of there by then. But this morning I was sleeping, and she was taking calls a few feet away. I heard her ask someone the name of their first dog — presumably a security question? — then said, “Yes, John matches what I have. How can I help you today?” John?!
I got up, even though it didn’t feel like I’d reached the natural end of my sleep cycle. But I was afraid I’d start farting, or something. I could imagine Toney trying to cover it up: “I’m sorry, I think we’re getting some feedback on the line. Or maybe there’s a helicopter flying over your house?”
And she was so chipper and friendly-sounding. I can’t have that, so early in the morning. Does that make any sense? I had to clear out, and quick.
But I think it’s going to be a good thing. It’s a great opportunity for her, and I’m jealous of the no-commute, no-office politics part of it. Nice.
I’m going to West Virginia on Friday. I made a vow to see my parents more often, and a couple months ago told them I’d be down there in late August. And I’m actually going to follow through on it.
Toney can’t go, and the older boy is back in school. So, I’m taking the younger youngling with me. We’re going to leave early on Friday, and return on Monday.
Yeah, and it’s turning into something a little more crazy than I’d hoped. An aunt and uncle are cutting short a vacation, so they can see us. That’s nice, and everything, but it puts me under a lot of pressure. Ya know? I fear they’ll be disappointed. “We came back for this? To watch this bastard sit on a couch and eat pie??”
Plus, there are a lot of parental “what do you want to eat?” and “what do you want to do?” questions. Too much emphasis for my liking. I don’t care for such a high level of emphasis. It makes me nervous.
I’m still walking most days — about four miles — and something a bit strange happened over the weekend. My daily route takes me through the elementary school parking lot, and I had an encounter with some young ruffians there.
They were hanging out, playing grab-ass, and being hyper-obnoxious. I’d put their age at approximately 14, and there were five or six of them. I spotted the passel of dipshits up ahead, and knew there would probably be some trouble. They were all wound-up, and swinging for the fences.
“Yo, you got a lighter, man?” one of them said, as I approached. Yo? That bugged me, already. Then, man? It was a double-whammy of disrespect.
I said no, and two of them walked toward me in a semi-aggressive way. “I think you’re lying,” one of them said.
“Fuck off,” I replied, and kept walking. It wasn’t a well thought-out plan. Five or six 14 year olds could have easily beaten the living shit out of me. Even these pampered suburban wannabes. Who do I think I am, Billy Jack?
But they backed down, and allowed me to pass without incident. So, I felt pretty good about that. However… there’s now a slight edge of danger to my daily walks. What happens the next time? It never stops.
Finally, I went through some “training” at work a couple of weeks ago. At the beginning we had to go around the table, say our name and our position with the company, then tell everyone a “fun fact” about ourselves.
Mine wasn’t overly “fun,” but it did the trick. There were certainly some lamer “facts,” and that’s good enough for me. As long as mine wasn’t the lamest, or so weird and dark it caused everyone to audibly gasp, I consider it to be a victory.
I’m going to close out today’s update by asking the very same question of you guys. In the comments section please tell us a fun fact about yourself, something we probably don’t know. It needs to be true though, we’re not doing material here…
And I’m calling it a day. I need to be at work in 30 minutes, and I’m 45 out. Ahhh, it’s just like old times here.
See you again soon!
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My parents met while working at the CIA.
Fun Fact: I got nothing… I tried.
Here you go fun fact. I only have 24 teeth. In order to straight my picket fence of a mouth out 30 years ago they had to cut out 4 molars and then eventually my wisdom teeth when they started to come in.
I have an ingrown hair and Bipolar.
Swami Bologna says
Fun Fact: In 1984 I snorted coke with three-quarters of the “classic” lineup of the Replacements (Paul & Tommy intentionally avoided inviting Bob; Chris joined in, though).
Val Bamberger says
I’m 66 1/2 years old and the top 3 things on my bucket list are 1) Dance once with my husband (we’ve never danced together – ever! Even at our wedding!) 2) pet a real, live panda, (preferably a young one)and 3) sing “Roll With The Changes” on stage with REO.
True fun fact: I’m an Improvisational comedy performer. Gearing up for 2 really big shoos in November. I’m no Ryan Stiles, but it’s a fun way to blow off steam!
And goddammit, Jeff. I have “One Tin Soldier” going through my head right now.
Go ahead and hate your neighbor
Go ahead and cheat a friend
Do it in the name of heaven
You can justify it in the end
There won’t be any trumpets blowing
Come the judgment day
On the bloody morning after
One tin soldier rides away
madz . . .
yes and…now you’ve jammed MY juke box onto that song and Billy Jack keeps side-kicking the machine into replay mode. I’ll soon need to break the glass of the emergency earworm box in my home office that plays MacArthur Park over and over and over until the fire department arrives.
yes and thanks
Hi John, Thanks for the help. Changing my email and forgetting my password has lost my avatar forever. I guess I’ll stay one of these default handouts instead of losing my handle. Notice how they resemble cartoons, except that one that looks like a penis. Shit! mine looks like something with bleeding eyeballs!
Hmmm, they look like rorschach tests to me, but of course, we each see things in the context of our own lives. You had a very nice horsey and it would be a shame to be represented by well, whatever you think these things are. Gravatar has a real-time help facility:
It wouldn’t hurt to talk to them and sing the blues. Of course, it’s up to you, but I doubt your comments would be as good as they are if you’d spent your life listening to penises. I’m just saying.
Wow John, I swear to Buddha, the other day I couldn’t find a link to speak with someone. Maybe I put a penis up to my ear instead of a phone? All weird shit aside I can’t recall ever listening to a penis. Stop putting ideas in my head I’m too old now!! I have had to listen to a few dickhead bosses but haven’t we all?
I created a new account and dropped in my old photo. Shouldn’t affect your handle.
I guess I should say with a different email address. Then use that email for this site.
I’ve made both Dwight Yoakam and John Doe laugh. Not at the same time … nor in the same decade.
Not fun enough? Too bad. Fuck off
Buford Lemon says
“We came back for this? To watch this bastard sit on a couch and eat pie??”
Pure fucking genius. Welcome back, sir!
Buford Lemon says
Hi. My name is Buford. I have ridden a motorcycle through 46 of the lower 48 and have a Smoking Fish picture standing next to the man himself!
Two days in a row! This is beyond outstanding. I love the new regime.
Fun fact: I have met Mark Levinson, and talked audio tech with him. I was not impressed with his level of understanding on the topic of balanced audio.
BTW, what became of the Subscribe button?
I got nothing. In thinking about this fun fact business I’ve come to the conclusion that I’m both boring and a dick.
Biffy clyro says
i have a deathly fear of workplace pooping. Only in a dire, dire emergency do I drop the kids off.
You’re on an unfamiliar playing field, with people coming and going and that shitty, shitty toilet paper that’s already disintegrating in your hand before it even meets your sphincter.
So much pressure and stress, and so many things that can go askew. No thanks.
Groovy Chainsaw says
No offense but that was not a fun fact. It may be a fact, but it wasn’t fun. Not at all 🙁
biffy clyro says
That’s what happens when ‘dump’ and ‘working’ are in the same title.
Phil Jett says
I had two sets of wisdom teeth. Had all eight removed. The second set were a real pain to get out. Took a lot of jackhammering.
And I only ever had three. Figured I was wise enough and didn’t need that last one.
So why do we even grow them when they’re just in the was and need to be removed? I smell an ADA conspiracy.
1) Because we are created in God’s image and he is a toothy son of a gun, or,
2) Because our great uncles and aunts were unable to harvest fire and had a substantially different diet which, among other things, was protein-deficient, resulting in their needing to chew long and often. The culinary and preservation arts made us who we are, for good or ill.
Training exercises make me nervous, as I never know what kind of “fun fact” I’ll have to conjure up in a jiffy about myself that is both mildly interesting and suitable for strangers and colleagues who don’t give a crap and for whom the feeling is mutual.
I’ll dig a little deeper into my past for the WVSR, however, and share one I would never discuss at my workplace (which is in a entirely different, totally boring industry): 11 years ago, I was finishing a graduate degree at a music conservatory with the intention of working in the music biz, and I interned in A&R Operations at a label that rhymes with Highland Jeff Dam, part of the Tune-reversal music group. My boss dropped her salad on the floor in her boss’s (rhymes with Mel J. Seed) office and called me to clean it up!! I balked, and she ultimately relented and called some other peon. I just couldn’t handle the symbolism behind my boss making me bend over in front of a bunch of top industry execs to pick up bacon bits from the floor. It felt like a power play and career killer, and I think it actually earned me some respect to decline the task, because at the end of the internship, my boss wanted me to interview to be a second assistant to Mel J. I couldn’t imagine taking shit for pennies for years in the hopes of moving up and living in NYC with 49 roommates in a 200 sq. foot apartment. So, I moved back to central PA to work in a boring industry but with a better quality of life. I sometimes wonder what could have been, but then I remind myself that the industry has pretty much imploded, and my ass would be living in a cardboard box on 8th Ave. if I had continued on that path. And then I appreciate the Pierogie Belt of central PA even more. The end!
I’m Spin… and I’m permanently banned from my local Apple store for raising my voice at the hipster douchebag “genius” who assured me that had a certain product, then proceeded to tell me that it’s only a download in the most condescending of voices once I got there.
Can’t spell cuss out this basted without custard. Enjoy that couch pie.
I had a trache in for 2 weeks in 1999 due to an incident with a Mexican at a taco bell.
-- Steve says
Fun Fact: phrases like “JanetReno/Hayride”, “Derby of Turds”, “Metallic Dump” fly out of my mouth without any forethought. Another reason I welcome back the WSVR – I need to update my vocabulary.
Groovy Chainsaw says
Back in the day I was on MTV’s “Remote Control”. That’s really only valid as a “fun fact” because otherwise it smacks of bragging about something that happened over 20 years ago.
Slightly fun fact: I covered the 2001 US Chess Championship in Seattle as an uncredentialed freelance photographer. I used faux ID dangling from an official lanyard, wore a khaki vest with an extra memory card in one pocket and the rest of the pockets stuffed with what might have seemed to be photography equipment but, if unzipped, would be found to be wrapped pieces of hard candy as an energy stimulant to get me through the five hour daily matches. I used a Kodak one-megapixel digicam. Each morning, I just ducked under the velvet ropes and looked official.
I think I was the only photographer covering the event who got a photo published in a non-chess publication. I sold a pic to Smithsonian Magazine which it published and credited.
I can push the button, but I am not a photographer.
For anyone who cares to look, that pic is available on Smithsonian’s website. You can claim your photography is in the Smithsonian.
That is a fun fact. A forum I participate in has a genuine Smithsonian photographer, very good with the camera, and as camera people usually go, there is a bit of arrogance in what equipment somebody uses. He’d probably shit if he found out a little 1 megapixel camera made it into a Smithsonian publication.
I was thrown out of the Rocky Horror Picture Show.
My wife is in the “Las Vegas Rock & Roll Hall of Fame”. So am I.
Root 66 says
Fun fact: I took a flight in a B-17 bomber once with my family, but I have never been on a commercial airliner! The B-17 was awesome–I even got to stick my head out of the top hatch into the open air.
Lee Harvey Ramone says
Fun fact: I tried to talk Dave Grohl out of joining Nirvana. Seriously. This conversation occurred about two weeks before he was scheduled to move to Seattle to join the band.
That’s more like a very cool awesome fact!
Imagine if he had listened to you? I wonder where his path would have led?
Right off the side of the stage?
Lee Harvey Ramone says
I am probably the last person from which anyone should take advice.
Surly Shawn says
Ahhh. The joys of telling kids/young adults to “fuck off!” Welcome to my world.
I can’t think of any fun facts about myself right now, other than I’ve been in both oceans, which is incredibly lame.
A more-fun fact: I worked tech support at the winter Olympics in 1992. Learned to ski while there.
More fun than that: Back when all involved were alive, my parents lived next door to Joey Ramone. Literally, the next apartment down the hall.
Lee Harvey Ramone says
Winner of the ‘funnest fact’ trophy.
Fun facts are always a bit of a bear to come up with.
A friend of mine rates my driving in how many fucks per mile I mutter.
I have the dubious honor of an emphatic ‘stupid mother fucker’ being broadcast on one of our live streams when I was unfucking somebody elses fuckup and got us live… Oops. Fortunately the guy on camera is the only one who knew it was me, and I dodged a fallout bullet considering who the audience consisted of.
madz . . .
I’m replying down here because the thread got a little crowded. It’s really cool that you do improv. Do you do it in the City or in the suburbs where you live? I used to do public speaking engagements; in 2004, I spoke to a crowd of about 3,000 when I was campaigning for Wesley Clark, and I’ve spoken to groups of hundreds many times, but I’d be way too chicken to do improv in front of anybody whomsoever.
Good luck on your shoos.
Thank you, jtb. We are a suburban group. I guess our biggest city was Troy, NY. It was St. Patrick’s Day weekend so we had a small audience. Between the hotel room, food and drinks, it was not a well paying gig. In fact, what we earned didn’t cover the bar bill at all, but it was a great weekend nonetheless.
We have 2 shows scheduled for November.
you can check us out (I can’t believe I’m going to say this) on Facebook: Say Anything, Brewter, NY (I’m the one with eyeglasses).
And on our very old website “Shirley you must be joking”.
I’ve performed on The Grand Ole Opry stage.
Mark Reznicek talked me into playing Frank Zappa’s ‘Titties and Beer’ on-air when we worked college radio. In hindsight, I probably shoulda listened to it first.
Was out on my daily jog when I came across a group of 15 year old young men who were looking at me with a strange look in there eyes. Nothing more dangerous then a pack of teenage boys without supervision. I literaly got the biggest ugliest snarl on my face and glowered at them as I came upon them. To this day I think I saved myself from a beat down by looking a little more intimidating they felt tha day…
SC Shawn says
I fly a powered paraglider. Nothing like cruising the skies with a piece of laundry holding you up.
I was born left handed. But was “fixed” by my great grandmother who insisted that I write with my right hand. Today I can write with either.
Skippy in WV says
I’ve been in or on every major body of water in the United States, with the exception of Lake Champlain (sp?), east of the Mississippi River. All 5 Great Lakes, the Atlantic, and the Gulf of Mexico.
fun fact… I have four full sized 1980’s video arcade games in my living room. And once in a while when no one else is home, I stop on my way from the shower to the bedroom and play them naked. Sigh. Living the dream, man…
Not a really terrific fun fact, but I only have part of a colon. No, seriously – had some taken out when I was a kid. Apparently spot genetic mutations can de-innervate smooth muscle.
This means I’m not as full of shit as most of you are.