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You don't understand. I'm a mysterious loner, not lonely.

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A bowl of corn, motherfuckers!

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Is that man-ass I smell?

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I'm loaded with tumors darling, and I don't even know it.

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2000

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The View From Down Here
                    
  February 2008

 

 


February 29, 2008

Yeah, do you sell corn dogs?

-- When I got to work Wednesday night I stopped to hang up my coat, as usual. We’re not allowed to take jackets and coats onto “the floor,” because of security concerns and the possibility of someone getting sucked headlong into a machine, or whatever. So, we have to leave our stuff in a common area, which I don’t much care for…

Anyway, I put the thing on a hanger, and when I bent over to pick up my lunch the entire ass exploded out of my pants.

This happens far too often, and I don’t understand it. Yeah, I know I’m a tad (as the JCPenney catalogs used to call it) husky, but I don’t see other people of size shredding denim all willy-nilly, the way I do.

I think I’ve got some kind of rare pants-destroying ass disorder, I really do. Just a few days ago I was wearing a gigantic pair of pajama bottoms, or sleep pants, or whatever you wanna call ‘em. I bent over to check something on the DVD player, and the violent sound of ripping fabric could be heard. Followed by a cool breeze across a part of my body not usually exposed to the elements (and which reacted accordingly).

Those “sleep pants” are big and baggy, and look like something MC Hammer would’ve worn. It’s not like I’m strutting around in skin-tight Lizard King-wear. I mean, what the hell?  Why so much exploding-ass?!

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February 27, 2008

Does he have it full of sandwiches?

-- The youngest Secret has, as the doctor describes it, a mild case of the flu. He told us to keep him home from school for the rest of the week, give him Motrin for the fever, and let him ride it out. By the weekend, we’re told, he’ll be good as new.

Ten years ago people would say they have the flu, and everyone would just shrug it off and go about their business. But now it’s a scary thing. I don’t know if it’s hysteria, I’m not knowledgeable enough on the subject, but the partial-word “flu” now strikes fear in the hearts of parents. When Toney told me the diagnosis, my heart sank.

But he seems fine. A little uncomfortable, but no puking or assplosions or anything... He’s upstairs right now playing “Rock You Like a Hurricane” on Guitar Hero, and hitting every note like a miniature kraut-metal hero. So, it can’t be too bad, right?

Toney asked the doctor about the rest of us, with our Big Trip just three weeks away. He told her we’ve all been exposed by now, and the best advice he can offer is “hope for the best.” Simply excellent.

Needless to say, I can already feel the disease taking hold… I felt fine until Toney called from the parking lot of the doctor’s office. But now I can sense the complete and systematic collapse of my immune system.

And so it goes.

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February 26, 2008

New sign at Sunshine's favorite campground

-- It’s another snow day here in the Upper Perogie Belt. Toney and the boys are home yet again. At this rate school will still be in session in August, and small children will be bursting into flames inside non-air conditioned classrooms. I can see it now, and it both frightens and amuses me…     

Nobody at the board of education asked my opinion (the pricks), but I think they’re playing a little fast and loose with the days off for snow this year. I really do. A few weeks ago I heard they canceled classes for the entire district, because a copier repairman showed up with a bad case of dandruff.

Thank you, I’ll be here all week!

-- When I started my new job I had no access to the internet, except for the company homepage and a handful of job-related (boring) websites. Needless to say, it drove me crazy.

Then one day there was no filter at all, and I could look at anything I wanted. Anything! This was kind of odd, because nobody else’s situation changed. Suddenly I, and I alone, had free reign.

Continue reading here 


February 25, 2008

Results of Best Buy In-Store Test

-- On Saturday the youngest Secret had his final basketball game of the season, and the coaches invited everyone to a local pizza joint afterwards, for lunch.

Needless to say, I don’t much care for this type of forced-togetherness with other parents. Toney always ends up in a marathon conversation with someone, and I’m left sitting by myself, staring into the holes of a salt shaker. But what choice did I have? None, that’s what.

The team commandeered several shoved-together tables, and the assistant coach asked the waitress (with dollar signs in her eyes) to start bringing the pizzas and the pitchers of soda. 

Already, before the first ounce of sugar-water had even been ingested, the younglings were running wild, letting out war whoops, and threatening to go head-first into the blazing fireplace. The noise level was significant.

I tried to strike up a conversation with a man who looks like Sam Donaldson, but it fizzled and we both went back to our salt shakers. Buddy Garrity” came by and asked us if pepperoni was OK. We said it was, and he moved on to the next person.

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February 22, 2008

Next Surf Report Bunker upgrade?

-- It’s snowing like a snappin’-bastard outside. The schools are closed, the beer stores are undoubtedly doing a turnaway business, and there will probably be an unusually high number of local babies born in nine months.

Toney and the kids are home today, so it feels like the weekend. We (Toney) made a few England-related calls this morning, including one to the hotel where we’ll be staying in London
. She had a question about our reservation, and I requested she also ask about wireless internet service.

The guy told us they offer it, but it’s nine pounds per day(!), with no discounted weekly rate. “I suggest,” he said, “that you use the internet café around the corner. It costs fifty pence, unlimited.” 

So, I’ll be using the internet café around the corner. Nine pounds per day?! Holy crap in a Bundt pan!

Toney also spoke with a person at AAA, about exchanging a little American money for the British kind before we leave. I know we’ll be able to use ATMs and credit cards over there, but would feel more comfortable arriving with some usable cash in our pockets. Ya know?

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February 20, 2008

Seriously, I don't think this is St. Louis

-- Our much-anticipated week in England is now less than a month away. 

We have our passports in order, our plane tickets purchased, reservations at a thoroughly-researched hotel in a nice part of town, two day-trips by bus (Cotswolds & Warwick Castle/Oxford) confirmed and paid-for, an airport shuttle service lined-up, and a highly-detailed (but flexible by design) list of things we want to do. 

We’ve spent the entire winter working on this project, and it had better not be cold and rainy the whole time we’re there…

One of the big gambles we’re taking, you see, is going in the so-called off-season. Presumably it’s “off” because the weather is questionable, and most kids are still in school. However, we’re going at the ass-end of the off-season, and the price break is what made it possible for any of this to happen in the first place. 

So, we’ll just have to play with the cards dealt us. Perhaps the vacation gods will cut us a break?

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February 19, 2008

Be careful how you use it!

-- On Saturday we had some things to do. In the morning we needed to go to the youngest Secret’s basketball game (or as a co-worker in Atlanta used to call it: baksetball). Plus, the oldest Secret was starting to look like Bobby Brady, and Toney wanted to take him for a haircut. I mean that shit was WAY overdue… 

I was lobbying for lunch at Five Guys (ahem). And neither of the younglings had an adequate piece of luggage for our upcoming trip, so we were going to try to remedy that situation as well. 

You know, just your standard weekend catch-up boolshit… 

I figured it would be a perfect opportunity to take my tiny new camera along for its maiden voyage, and I slipped it into my jacket pocket. Maybe I’d get lucky and capture a few interesting shots during our travels?

First stop after baksetball was the mall, for the emergency haircut procedure. The place was packed, of course, and they told us it would be at least a thirty minute wait. So I told Toney I was going to wander around, and she could just call my cell phone when they were finished. The younger Secret announced he was going with me, and we got the hell out of there.

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February 15, 2008

Is the Angry White Guy selling blocks?

-- When I was a youngling there were no 24-hour cable networks dedicated to children’s programming. In fact, there were no cable networks whatsoever. To us, the word cable had no relation to TV; it meant “a heavy, strong rope.”

And there were no Chuck E. Cheeses, or “soccer camps,” or even soccer itself – at least as far as we knew. Beyond Little League and Scouts, there just wasn’t much in the way of formal activities for kids, especially compared to today. 

So, by default, we were in charge of creating our own fun. And since it was also before ‘round the clock TV news, and
20/20 and Nightline and Greta and the Missing White Girls (why isn’t that a band name by now?), folks were a lot less paranoid then. And we were therefore granted ample freedom with which to create said fun.

This led to an inordinate amount of Wiffle Ball, and games of “flashlight” after dark, and that sort of thing. But it also opened the door to days of aimless wandering, on either foot or bicycle, and impromptu “activities” which sometimes got us into hot water with our parents and/or law enforcement personnel.

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February 13, 2008

Current WVSR Desktop Wallpaper

-- The ride to work yesterday afternoon ate it, with gusto. It was, as we used to say back home, slicker than cat shit on a marble floor. I was twenty minutes late, even though I left ten minutes early, and my stomach lining was conspiring against me.

But conventional wisdom told us the ride home would be
even worse. Because, they kept saying, the snow is going to end and the freezing rain is going to begin. I didn’t care for any of it, I didn’t care for it t’all.

Needless to say, half the employees called-off. And half of the remaining half left around
nine o’clock . So we were running on a skeleton crew, and the smokers kept feeding us progress reports throughout the night: “Oh man, it’s horrible out there.  WE’RE ALL GOING TO DIE!!”

Well, that’s simply excellent.

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February 12, 2008

Traveling in comfort with... who??

-- Apparently we’re going to take a swift kick to the crotch tonight, and will find ourselves shoveling a metric shitload of snow off the driveway tomorrow morning. They’re closing the schools preemptively, the skies are getting grayer and grayer, and I have a feeling there’s not a single loaf of bread or gallon of milk available for purchase throughout the entire Perogie Belt.

And here’s a little prediction for y’all: I will drive to work this afternoon, thirty miles on slick roads, with my sphincter cinched off so tight I’ll have to swallow a handful of aspirins when I arrive. And when I get there I’ll learn that people in my department, some of whom live roughly a hundred yards away from the place, “couldn’t make it in.”

So, it’ll be me and the other two management suckers working our asses off like longshoreman. Then I’ll get to drive home at 2:30 AM
, my spine in full distress, not able to see what’s road and what’s median. Then I’ll end up taking a wrong turn and spending the night submerged in a snowdrift in New Hampshire , or someplace, with my back wheels suspended directly above my front wheels.

We’ll just have to wait and see how it goes.

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February 11, 2008

Lest we forget—lest we forget!

-- Sunshine is plotting another of her marathon visits for the spring, and this one is already making me go grrrr. 

She has this ugly-ass cat, you see, that looks like somebody took a sledgehammer and smashed its face in. It’s mean as all hell, plus I’m allergic to those Satanic beasts, as is the youngest Secret. But, of course, she’s insisting on bringing it anyway.

Toney told her no way, but she and Nancy are cut from the same cloth. Both will keep on and keep on, and try to wear a person down.
It’s futile to resist! You will do my bidding!! 

Right now she’s in the sarcastic phase, and saying things like, “Oh, that’s right. I forgot about Jeff’s
fake allergy. It’s funny how convenient that is… When he doesn’t like something, he’s suddenly allergic to it.” 

What in the hell is she talking about?? What else am I allergic to? I’m not allergic to anything – except cats. Man, that woman knows how to push my buttons…

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February 7, 2008

I mean, these are REALLY good

-- A few days ago my cell phone rang, and it was a number I didn’t recognize. I considered just letting it go to voicemail but, curious, I finally answered on the third or fourth ring. 

And it was some husky-voiced woman from an outfit called Pennsylvanian’s For Obama. Or something along those lines. Without hesitating, she launched into her scripted spiel. Obama this, and Obama that. Obama needs your support… There’s building excitement in the state; we’re all shitting our pants over here…

This kind of thing irritates me, even under normal circumstances. But this chick was burning up my airtime minutes, on top of everything else.

“Whoa! Hold up!!” I began shouting, but she continued to talk. She invited me to a rally and a Spaghetti Feed for Change, or somesuch. And she simply wouldn’t yield the floor.

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February 6, 2008

I just hope they washed their hands first

-- I keep seeing a Cheerios TV commercial featuring ugly people. It’s an ugly “husband” eating cereal, and an ugly “wife” sitting there acting all superior to the buffoon seated across from her. You know, the standard template: the man as the hopeless dipshit, and the woman acting all smug and exasperated about it.

But I’m already getting off-track… Every time I see this thing I wonder how those two got into acting. Is there such a thing as an ugly niche in the industry? I simply don’t know. 

But I do know you’d have to have a pair the size of the
Carolinas to look like that, and pursue a career in acting. It would be like a person with one medically-prescribed Herman Munster shoe refusing to give up on his dream of someday joining the touring cast of Riverdance.

So, I actually kind of admire them. It’s an inspiring story for a man of my personal attributes, to see these folks getting work in an industry known for its superficiality, and obsession with perfection and beauty.

I know that if a man who looks like a human hamster collecting acorns for the winter can land a national TV spot, anything’s possible. And the same goes for a woman with a face so large and pasty a group of people could sit around it and play cards in the late afternoon.

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February 4, 2008

Sabrina demonstrates her equipment

-- It’s a minor miracle you’re reading an update here today. The royal family is gone, but not before succeeding in cramping my style in spectacular fashion. 

I got home from work at 3:15
this morning, and Eninen’s flesh-ripping dog started going wild, causing Andy to fly off the handle… Then I heard people walking around, and toilets flushing, and whisper-hollering. Highly irritating.

Then, at 6:45
, I was awakened to the unmistakable call of the wild translucent. I think it was the youngest see-through, just rampaging through the house and screaming like he was on fire. And was he made to stop? No, he was not. The fact that I was trying to sleep – in my own house – was clearly not a consideration.

And I wasn’t able to do any prep work at the site, because I couldn’t get near my computer for most of the weekend. There was always somebody camped out near the bunker door, crying or throwing a tantrum or building a “two-headed snake” with Lego. (Not Legos, mind you,
Lego.) Usually this was a kid, but not always.

So, the whole thing has pretty much been off the rails since Saturday. Surf Report VIPs will be able to read a full report in the coming days. And if you don’t know how to become a VIP by now… tough toenails.

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