Tuesday, November 28, 2006

I've Got Nothing

I gotta tell you, it's been nice being back at work finally. It's a lot less hectic than being at home on vacation with the fambly. I even got back all rejuvenated and found myself caring about work. Actually caring. Someone today even accused me of "being all worked up" about the quality of our cache power rollup and how this showed that I cared about getting things right.

Then, of course, I talked to StinkyJ, and he reminded me in his inimitable, subtle way, why it is that caring about work is a giant waste of emotion. I'm sure that wasn't his intention, but he's not much of a motivational speaker. We actually go so far as to try to prevent him from giving motivational speeches when there is trouble brewing at work.

We got a couple inches of snow today at the homestead, and I went out after dinner to play in it with HannieC. MaxieC refused to go out because it was "too dark", though oddly he got up at 5am this morning and declared "it's light out and time to get up" when it was equally dark. HannieC, also in her inimitable style, decided to ride the tire swing. She decided to spin around in it really fast. Right after dinner.

So our time in the snow ended with barfing through the hole in the tire swing. Going to work apparently just caused everyone to save it up for when I get home. I'm sure the dog will be out there tomorrow cleaning that up.

He likes ham.

MaxieC, Wise Guy

An actual conversation:
Me, CherkyB: I smell poop.
MaxieC: I smell you.
Me, CherkyB: Why do I smell poop?
MaxieC: Why do I smell you?

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Day 8 of 9, From Bad to Worse

HannieC's hamster died this evening. RIP Angibelle.

Saturday, November 25, 2006


Back on Day 5, when we were at Dick's, HannieC also wanted to check out fishing gear for MaxieC. We found a little beginner's kit, and I said, "This is just like the one I got you, except a different color." And HannieC replied, "Hey! You didn't get that for me. Santa did!"

Friday, November 24, 2006

Day 7 of 9, Merry Christmas

I really haven't got much to write about today, but my fans (well, Fat Moother) are clamoring for a post. I'm going to warn you ahead of time that this is going to be a CJ-quality post, not the normal CherkyB-quality.

BTW, did you people catch that shot CJ took at my wife in his Thanksgiving post?
We probably will stick around town in the next few days and maybe go to Rocky Mountain park on Saturday. Usually we wait for our guest(s) to adjust to the altitude before taking them to higher grounds.
Just for your information, you little bastard, it wasn't the elevation that did in Fat Moother. And don't think you can make fun of The Mrs. without consequences. That's my job.

While I'm at it, I'd also like to address a comment made by the inscrutable Navie-B,
I wonder how come you are all C's (including FreddieC), and Dave is suddenly a T.
Interesting twist.
Uh, Navie hon, check up there at the top of the page. Does it say "CherkyC," or does it say "CherkyB". Yeah. I thought so. And Dave is a T because he's a m'f'ing teapot. Duh. ™

Today was a faux-Christmas with Fat Moother. It started out just like a real Christmas, with MaxieC cranky as all hell. See, he wasn't sick anymore, and he was starving from having barfed up everything he ate or drank for 24 hours. But he was also terrified of eating anything for fear of barfing. So he just lay there on the floor and wailed. I mean really wailed. Good God Almighty, but was that annoying as all get-out.

Then something even worse happened. He decided he only wanted Daddy, not Mommy. Every time The Mrs. went near him, he hollered like he had just been set on a creepy department store Santa's lap, and the whiskey breath was burning his eyes. Ingratiating to Daddy, i.e., Me, CherkyB, but all in all I prefer when The Childrens are overbonded to their mother. It gives me more time for my second income-producing job.

The Mrs. tried to feed him a little chicken soup, but again it was Santa-roll-of-quarters. I had to take him down into the basement to sit at the bar and watch me play bubble shooter. A game that, oddly enough, I first saw when The JohnnyB was playing it during boring meetings at work many years ago. It just about the only thing I ever learned from the JohnnyB at work, though I must say he learned an awful lot from me. Now that may be because I know a lot more than The JohnnyB, or it may be because I'm a lot more dense than he is and thus incapable of learning. I'll let you folks hold the two blogs up side-by-side and decide for yourselves. But this I say with certainty: I'm clearly better-looking. That's why almost all my readers are womens, and well, almost all The JohnnyB's readers are his wife.

Though if you were sitting there at work towards the end of the day and going, "Man, I'm thirsty," and you had to choose between The JohnnyB and Me, CherkyB to go have a beers with, it'd be a tough choice. If you were in it for the long haul, I'd be the obvious choice, as I'm a much better conversationalist. Hell, I can conversationalist with myself for hours without any outside intervention as long as there is beer. However, if you're in it for the short term, The JohnnyB is an excellent beer invite because nearly all after-work beer engagements with The JohnnyB go like this:
The JohnnyB: Let me get the first pitcher.
You: OK. I'll get the next one.
[pause for beer to arrive - The JohnnyB's allure that you read about on his wife's blog is powerless against cocktail waitresses.]
[beer arrives]
You: {guzzle guzzle guzzle}
The JohnnyB: {guzzle} {smoke smoke smoke}
{ring ring, ring ring, ring ring}
The JohnnyB (into phone): Yeah?...
The JohnnyB: Oh crap...
The JohnnyB: OK, I'll be right there... No. I'm not doing anything. OK... Yeah... Be right there... I don't know, like 20 minutes... I'm at work... Well, next to work... At SC-13... Yeah, that's why I said I'll be right there... OK... OK... Can we talk about it in 20 minutes when I'm there?... OK... I'm sorry, it's just... Yeah... OK...
The JohnnyB: I gotta go. Navie-B did {something non-flattering, and she needs me to fix it right now.
You: {guzzle} You're going to finish your beer, at least, right?
The JohnnyB: {gulp} OK gotta go. Bye.
But I digress.

After a little while of watching me play bubble shooter, MaxieC decided he wanted some soup. So we went back upstairs, and he ate exactly 4 spoonfuls that I fed him. Then back downstairs for more bubble shooter. Then he said he wanted to go eat the rest of the soup, but he was going to feed it to himself. And he did.


One little bowl of soup did not heal the lad, however, of his propensity to howl. We got plenty of little, angry, two-year-old howling most of the morning and into the afternoon.

We went and cut down a Christmas tree in the early afternoon, as is our day-after-Thanksgiving tradition. We had to drive all the way out to the far side of Greeley to get one. Actually, we ended up having to cut down two. We found the prefect tree and cut it down, but then when they put it on the needle shaker (something I've never seen before - an electric platform that you stand the tree on, and it shakes it until all the loose needles fall off), the top broke off. It turned out to have some latent rot damage up there. So they sent us back out for a new tree.

The new one we got is big and fat, and slightly bent. Hey, it's what you look for in a girlfriend, why not in a Christmas tree?

Nearly all the rest of the day was spent setting it up and decorating it, and then opening up all the presents Fat Moother had brought. I got two forstner drill bits, a tongue-and-groove router bit, a Pepsi hat, and bathroom reading book. Woo-Hoo!

We should have Christmas every day.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Day 6 of 9, Happy Thanksgiving

MaxieC is still sick, but not nearly as bad as yesterday. I'm still sick - a little worse than yesterday but not too bad. Everyone else is not sick.

I took HannieC out for some lawnmower joyriding, then she wanted me to pull her in the bike trailer to the park that's a couple blocks over. I did that, but I paid for it later. It really wiped me out. I had to go down into the basement and take a nap on the couch. I lay there peacefully, undiscovered for about 1 quarter (the second quarter of Dallas v. Tampa Bay), until The Mrs. woke me up to "play" with MaxieC.

It turned out what she meant when she said "play" was "change his nasty, poopy diaper".

We shall eat soon, I suspect.

The good new is that I found Dave:

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Day 5 of 9, Late Night Edition

Fat Moother is fine. I had to wait a half hour in the parking lot and then another 20 minutes in the ER waiting room before they let me pick her up. Seems the hospital was on lockdown because someone pulled a gun in the maternity ward and then started running around with it. Eventually, he went outside, and they locked down the hospital so as to not let anyone in or out.

If I had known the reason they asked me to wait in the van was because there was a crazed gunman running around outside, I might have driven somewhere else to wait. But they didn't tell me.

They actually drove everybody to their cars, one at a time. Even though I was parked just 100 yards from the entrance, and even though they had made me sit in that very car for a half hour already, I wasn't allowed to walk back to it with Fat Moother.


When I got back home, I made myself some tea. If I were The JohnnyB, I would have just whined a lot until someone made me tea. But that's how it works in his house. His wife is an enabler. My wife, on the other hand, is not. This is how it went in my house:
The Mrs.: "Are you making yourself some tea?"
Me, CherkyB: "Yes. My throat is killing me."
The Mrs.: "Make HannieC some, too."
The Mrs.: "Decaffeinated."
Me, CherkyB: "Where's Dave?" [editor's note: Dave is the name of our teapot. It's a long story.]
The Mrs.: "I don't know. Just make yourself a cup of tea. Dave doesn't hold more than that anyways. Why can't you just make the tea and forget about Dave? Is that so hard? Jeeze. Make sure HannieC's is decaffeinated."
So I made myself a mug of tea and a mug for HannieC, too. I had the mug almost to my lips when I heard that wonderful sound of someone barfing. It was MaxieC upstairs. The Mrs. was with him. I set my mug down and waited for the sound to stop. Then I went upstairs to see if there was something for me to clean up.

There was, as it turns out. MaxieC had managed to explosively poop out the top of his diaper, up his back, and down his sleeve. The kind of thing a milk-fed newborn does, only he's almost three and much, much bigger. He was not at all happy about this.

Neither was I.

The Mrs. informed me that she was going to sleep on the floor next to MaxieC (who had moved to the floor due to him barfing all over his bed while I was sitting in the van being bait for a crazed gunman). This was the best news of the day. Better than the shower not leaking.

I got her an old couch mattress we have that she likes to camp out on, and I brought her her three pillows and her teddy bear. Then she requested one of the spare comforters that's in the basement. So I went to the basement and picked out the nicest one. I looked at the other two and said to myself, "Self, you ought to bring those up, too, if you don't want to be making this trip two more times during the night."

But I didn't. I'm such an optimist.

I covered up The Mrs. and headed to the kitchen to drink my tea. Just as I got to MaxieC's door, I heard a wretch. I turned around and turned on the light. MaxieC had barfed on The Mrs.'s comforter.

God hates optimists.

I schlepped back to the basement, got the remaining two comforters, took them back to The Mrs., then I drank my tea. I drank it quickly.

Day 5 of 9, You Wonder Why I Never Take Vacation

Today started out like any other middle-day-of-the-vacation day. That is, I woke up with a terrible sore throat. This came as no great surprise, as I went to bed with one the night before. Normally, I would have knocked down the sore throat during germination with my homeopathic gin'n'tonic remedy, which had been holding it at bay for a couple days already. But I had to go pick up Fat Moother at the airport last night, and then I had to be on my best behavior all night because we had company, and then I didn't want to listen to a lecture about how gin'n'tonic actually makes a sore throat worse if for some bizarre reason the remedy didn't work. Like that time I had pneumonia, for example. But I digress.

I mentioned to The Mrs. that my sore throat had not improved during the night, and that I wanted to make a run to Walgreensberg to pick up some medicine, since we didn't have any, and tomorrow being Thanksgiving and all it'd probably be closed. She said, "I'm going to take my shower."

Which was a bright spot in the day. The shower did not leak. Sure, it still leaked after $9000 of rebuilding. Sure, it still leaked (though in fewer places) after I recaulked the door seal where it was leaking. But the contractor came back and redid one of the grout seams, and now it doesn't leak.


While The Mrs. was in the shower, HannieC started complaining vociferously. How is that different from normal? Well, it isn't. Only this time she was upset because her hamster had peed on her nightgown, and it was a special nightgown covered in cows that she was wearing because Granny Moo Moo (aka Fat Moother) was a cow fanatic. I don't know why.

So I had to dump the special cow nightgown into the washing machine so that it would be washed and dried before Granny Moo Moo got up. As I was doing this I said to myself, "Self, I wonder which of these 5 baskets of laundry I could throw in with this load? If I choose the wrong one, I'll get yelled at quite heartily. I am, after all, banned from doing laundry because of improper color matching. But, if I wash only one tiny little girl's nightgown, I'll get yelled at for being too lazy to put in any of the other wash. Well, self, since almost all roads lead to getting yelled at, you might as well take the lazy route."

So I washed only the cow nightgown. Oddly enough, I didn't get yelled at. "Self, laziness is clearly the right direction."

After The Mrs. got out of the shower, I went to take mine. As I am accustomed to do, I locked the door. I do this as The Childrens seem to always miss me right when I get in the shower, and there's nothing more annoying than screaming little childrens pounding on the shower door when you're trying to wake up.

I'm not so much a morning person.

When I got out, The Mrs. lectured me about having locked the door. See, she "needed to talk to me" while I was in the shower. Why, pray tell? Well, she had talked to her The Sister, and they had decided to get Fat Moother a digital camera for her birthday (which is Sunday, I think), and I needed to get it today because Fat Moother had forgotten her film camera at home and wanted to go out and buy a couple disposable cameras today. She needed to tell me this while I was in the shower because, at only 5000 square feet, there isn't any possibility of being out of earshot of Fat Moother anywhere in the house other than the master shower.

Not to mention Fat Moother was still in bed asleep when I got out of the shower.

So now I was going to Walgreensberg and to buy a digital camera. Now, back where I'm from (silicon valley), they sell digital cameras at Walgreensberg. So, if you don't mind not getting the absolutely best price or selection, this is still a one-stop trip.

"Oh, and can you stop at the library and return these books? They're due today."

"Oh, and pick up balsamic vinaigrette salad dressing, too, for Fat Moother."

"And take HannieC with you. She'll be ready in a minute. HannieC! Daddy is leaving without you if you don't hurry up! What are you doing? Put the hamster back! Daddy is leaving. Hurry up."

About 20 minutes later, we left. Just as we were leaving, Fat Moother called The Mrs. from the basement on her cellphone to announce her awakening. I don't know why. I left.

Dropped off the library books without incident. Hit Walgreensberg. No salad dressing. No digital cameras. Great. That's two more stops.

King Stoopers is right next door to Walgreensberg, so we score some salad dressing quite quickly. I worry because it says "fat free" on it, and I don't want Fat Moother to be offended by me suggesting she might be fat and buying her fat free salad dressing. But all the balsamic vinaigrette salad dressing says "fat free" on it, so maybe it's just naturally fat free, like beer.

Though none of my beer says "fat free" on it.

Now, after the third stop of my running out to get sore throat medicine, I can finally head down to Loverlyland where there is a Worst Buy. I like Loverlyland, cuz it's not as populous as Ft. TomCollins, so the stores are less crowded. We live midway between, so it's a pick'em drive-time-wise.

Went into the Worst Buy, and looked for the camera I owned. I'm pretty happy with it, and it was reasonably priced. Well, they've now incremented the model number by 10 (from A520 to A530), added 1 more mega-pixels, and deleted a couple of the strange shooting modes that I have never used. I talk to the dude.
Me, CherkyB: "Hey dude. I'm looking for a digital camera for XXX price. I see you've got four of them. I own one like this, and I like it a lot."
Dude: "That's by far the best camera at that price."
Me, CherkyB: "OK. I'll take one of these."
He grabs it, we grab a 1GB memory card, and he takes me to the checkout, where there is no one in line at all. That's why I love Loverlyland.

Next to Worst Buy, there's a ColdStoned. HannieC sees that and suggests we stop by for a little treat. What the hell. We're on vacation.

Go into ColdStoned, and it's a little dark. Guy comes out from the back, "Uhh...we're closed. We don't open until noon." It's 10:30. Great.

Sorry, HannieC. Why don't we head over to Dick's to look around?

At Dick's, we try on ice skates. She needs childrens 13, and they only have down to youth 1, which is one size up. I lace them all up, and HannieC tells me these are great, they fit perfectly, I really think we should get them. Then,
Me, CherkyB: "Are you sure they fit perfectly? Are you sure you're not just saying that because you really want them? We can go to another store and get the right size if these don't fit."
HannieC: "We should go to another store. I really need the 13's. These are too big and uncomfortable."
So then we go do what I wanted to go to Dick's to do - check out youth-sized pellet rifles. Shhh...don't tell The Mrs.

I talked to the gun counter guy. He didn't have any youth-sized pellet rifles. He wasn't even aware that they made them. But, and this is what I love about Colorado, he did suggest an alternative. The Rossi Triple Play. This is a youth-sized stock with three interchangeable barrels, a .22LR, a .243, and a 20 ga shotgun. Then he says this to me:
You start her out now just playing with the .22, then when she gets to be about seven, you can move her up to the shotgun.
Uhhh...I'm really just looking for an air rifle, cuz we're just shooting in our garage right now. Thanks for your time.

Damn tempting, though.

When I got home, my life was planned. We were going to the local hotdog/gyro place for lunch, and then we were driving to Rocky Mountain National Park so that Fat Moother could see the mountains. I asked, "Who's going to sit in the way back seat?" The Mrs. said she was. I mentioned how she gets carsick, and this was going to be a two hour drive each way through a winding mountain pass. She then volunteered her mother. We argued about that for a while, given her mother's propensity towards carsickness, but The Mrs. insisted we couldn't displace HannieC from the middle row because she wouldn't be able to see the DVD screen as well from the back row.

Jesus. You're just provoking me again. What is it with you womens?

I said, no, HannieC sits in the way back seat. You and your mother can decide amongst yourselves who sits in the front and who in the middle row.

The Mrs. immediately claimed the front.

We were just about one hour into the drive, just before Estes Park (which is a town, not a park, oddly enough), when I heard from the middle row something no driver of a brand new minivan wants to hear. "Is there any way to get some air back here?"

Oh rats. Fat Moother is getting carsick. Luckily, in modern minivans, the second row of windows opens wide, so I opened her window. The Mrs. opened her air vent and aimed it at her, too. It was dicey for the next 5 miles, but we made it to the Estes Park Visitors' Center, where they have wonderful bathrooms. It was a planned pitstop location, since Rocky Mountain National Park is mostly outhouses.

We spent about a half hour there with me watching the Childrens down in the riverbed where they were throwing rocks into the water, when Fat Moother decided it was time to purge. Luckily, she had two shirts.

The Mrs. went across the street to Safeway and bought some dramamine. I put The Childrens back in the van to watch DVDs cuz they were getting bored with the spectacular scenery of the great frigging outdoors in the Rocky frigging Mountains, and they preferred Monsters, Inc.

We waited around a while for the dramamine to kick in, and made a run back to Safeway to buy barf bags while we left Fat Moother in the cool air sitting on a bench right near the door next to the bathroom. Then, for some bizarre reason, they all piled into the minivan and The Mrs. said, "We just need to drive somewhere where there's a bench for my mother to sit down and rest."

I noted that we had spent the last hour some place where there was a bench to sit down and rest on, and it was right next to a bathroom to boot. Literally and figuratively. But, I was overruled as per usual, so we headed off into the tourist trap that is downtown Estes Park. Downtown Estes Park is like three blocks long, so we were immediately through it and headed up the road to Rocky Mountain National Park, since that's the only thing on the other side of Estes Park. Luckily, we immediately spotted a herd of elk between the highway and a parking lot. We decided to go back for a closer look, which required us to circle back and get on a parallel road.

When we found the elk, whose parking lot were they right behind? Estes Park Brewery. The local brew pub. There I am with a queasy mother-in-law, a cranky 2-year-old who missed his nap, an angry 6-year-old who wanted to go to see the snow and wasn't going to get to, and a harried wife, and God deposits me in the parking lot of a brewpub.

God was screwing with me.

Or, just maybe, God is pointing the way to salvation. Maybe, just maybe, I am like Moses, and the brew pub is like the parting in the Red Sea, and who am I to look at it and wonder if I might get my feet wet? So I took the shot.

"Uh, ma'am (I call The Mrs. "ma'am" in person), you think I have time to run in and have one while your mother rests and The Childrens look at the elk?"

Yup. God is just screwing with me.

The ride home was touch-and-go, but we were able make it all the way home without incident. It went like this: MaxieC shrieked as loud as he could, then he kicked the back of Fat Moother's seat, then Fat Moother moaned and said, "MaxieC, don't yell and stop kicking my chair." Then repeat. For one solid hour. At least HannieC slept through the whole thing.

When we got home, the womens headed for the bathrooms while I got MaxieC set up watching some TV and having a snack so I could cook dinner. The Mrs. showed up first with this:
I laid a big load in toilet upstairs, and it didn't go down at all. Just leave it. I'll bail it later.
Then, the mother emerged from the first floor bathroom and headed downstairs to the guest room. The Mrs. was in there shortly thereafter mopping up puke.

After that, The Mrs. packed Fat Moother off to urgent care. I microwaved some kiddie meals for The Childrens. MaxieC stood up from the couch, and I could see his butt was wet.

With diarrhea.

Changed his diaper and pants, got his meal out of the microwave, and called him to the table. He came right away, and immediately threw up on the kitchen floor right next to his chair. Hot dog with ketchup - that was lunch.

The Mrs. called to say they were bouncing Fat Moother from urgent care to the ER for "additional tests".

I gave MaxieC a cup of ice chips, at HannieC's insistence. Max took one chip and promptly dumped the rest of the cup on the floor right next to the pile of puke.

HannieC ate her dinner.

MaxieC declared himself tired, too tired to watch TV even, and insisted on bed. I put on his night-time diaper, got out his jammies, and he promptly barfed on his bedroom floor. More hot dog with ketchup. Ketchup. I paid $12k for this rug in August.

The Mrs. called to say Fat Moother would be there a while, and did I want her to come home. I tried to not sound desperate.

"It would not be unhelpful if you were here."

She came home.

Now, dinner is ready. I'm going to go eat.

How is your vacation going?

[Update: MaxieC barfed on the toilet lid of a third bathroom just as soon as we sat down to dinner. Good thing we have four bathrooms. I'm heading out to pick up Fat Moother from the hospital now. She's OK.]

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Day 4 of 9, Nightime Update

From some of the comments, like this one from Navie-B, "Bad day at work, Ha?" I know you folks haven't been paying attention. Now, maybe it's only Navie-B who hasn't been paying attention, but given the fact that she hits my website at least 30 times a day, I'm suspecting that she's just playing dense to see if she can provoke me.

That's the problem with you people. You're always trying to provoke me. Really, how could I have been "less PC" before? I defy you to point to one PC thing I've ever written. Just one.

There you go again, provoking me.

Anyways, let me explain for you folks who don't really pay attention because you have jobs or kids to raise or noodie models to go throw dollar bills at: The nine days is the number of days I have to spend in a row with my fambly. Now, since there are apparently both Democrats and Canadians reading this, let me explain something that maybe I considered to be implicit: the way I spend 9 days in a row with my fambly is by not going to work. See, if I were at work, I wouldn't be with my fambly. See? Do you? No, really? See, so if I'm not at work because I'm in day 4 of 9 days in a row with my family, that kind of implies (again, I assume my readers can draw logical conclusions despite being mostly womens, and that's probably my own personal failing for keeping that small, happy spot in my heart still alive that believes humanity isn't doomed to go the way of Europe) that I'm NOT AT WORK. And, again with the implications, if I'm not at work, I can't really be having a "bad day at work" now, can I?

Today was mostly uneventful. I picked Fat Moother up at the airport, though we had a bit of a snafu where I didn't know that you can't actually pick people up at baggage claim, but you have to pick them up one level below that cuz only buses and limos and taxis are allowed on the baggage claim level at DEN. This led to the inevitable phone call that goes like this, "I'm at the curb, but I don't see any place where cars can come. Just buses, limos, and taxis." "I'm at the curb, too. Only I don't see any place for buses, limos, or taxis." Rats.

The Childrens went a little crazy when I arrived with Granny, though FreddyC (the dog for those not following along - which is apparently all of you except maybe The Mrs., who for sure knows who FreddyC is) may have gone the most crazy of all. But now things are calm. MaxieC is asleep, and HannieC is playing the piano.

Oh, and my barstools finally arrived today. Like 11 weeks after ordering them.

I'd like to welcome a new member to the blogroll fambly: Rhonda of Rhonda's Blog fame. I filed her under the Borebloggers category for now. We'll have to keep an eye on that. I am bestowing upon Rhonda's Blog the much coveted "Blog of the Week" title and the inevitable Cherkylanche of hits that come with that. Too bad she doesn't have her AdSense context-sensitive advertisements up yet.

I think The Mrs. put it best a couple days ago when she nonchalantly asked Me, CherkyB, "Who's Rhonda?" To which I answered in a very non-rehearsed way, "I don't know."

The Mrs. gave me one of those, "but wait, there's more" looks, so I expanded. I said, "I was clicking on 'next blog', and I came across Rhonda's first post, to which I left comment. Then she left a comment back on Me, CherkyB, and she has left comments on most of the posts since then."

On the same day, I also left a 10 or 11 paragraph advisory comment on the blog of some dude in Texas whose band just broke up and was complaining that his parents thought he might be gay and that everyone else was pretty sure he was hooking up with his "just friend" Kimmy. I'm a regular Tom Leykis. Haven't heard back from him, but statcounter tells me I have a pretty regular reader in Plano now, and I don't know anyone in Plano. I don't think I even know anybody who knows anybody in Plano. So, here's a shout out to Plano dude. Welcome.

Oh, and I got a death threat comment from someone else who had a single post that said, "This is my new blog," and I left the comment, "What happened to your old blog." Interestingly, I'm not really sure it was really a death threat. I deleted it from the comments section, but it went exactly like this:

Dear Cherkb,

I am sorry I must say but you caused a DISASTER ! You ! Cherkb wrote a comment " What happened to your old blog ?" incom and you caused a disaster. Better say sorry or ... yyou'll die in 2 days ! Say sorry by contacting Yan Ching @ Address : Blk 280 Tinga Rd # 03-11111 S(89819191) Tel : sssssw355444444444
Tomorrow will be day 2, so if I die mysteriously, you can blame Yan Ching. From statcounter, it appears Yan Ching lives in Singapore. I'm not convinced this isn't a joke post. Hey, Yan, if you're serious about killing me, can you send me better contact info? I don't know how to dial sssssw355444444444.

You know, something that may be interesting is that thus far, the majority of "Blog of the Week" recipients have been people I never met.

Oh, really?

NavyA-B, has apparently been working through the archives today. She posts the following comment on this classic:
"Hey, you used to be much funnier and less PC in June... [...]"
Well, the reason for that is quite simple. You see, back in June most of my readers were men. Today, however, most of my readers are women. In response to that demographic shift, I've had to seriously dumb-down my posts so as to not go over their heads or offend their delicate sensibilities.

So why don't ya'll go play a game of hide and go fcuk yourselves.

Sheesh. Everyone's a critique.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Day 3 of 9. Early evening report.

I got to go to the DMV today. Again. I failed in my attempt to get a Colorado dribblers libcense last week. Not because I failed the test or anything (which isn't required in CO if you have a valid out-of-state libcense. Unlike in CA.). No, I didn't make it past the screener at the door. He didn't approve of my birth certificate. It did not contain enough information to qualify for a CO dribblers libcense.

I argued mightily, as this was the certificate I had used to get my passport. 'Course, I got my passport back in 1987, and it has long since expired since I can't figure out any country in the world that would be a better place to visit than my own. Except maybe Canada to go see "the ballet" in Fort Erie. Never needed a passport to go to Canada, though. Haven't been there in 8 years, so maybe that has changed, too. I think Fort Erie still has lots of ballet troupes, though.

The man was nice enough. He said, "Obviously you're a citizen, but we can't accept this birth certificate because of homeland security rules." Then he ave me a number to call to order up a Minty Fresh birth certificate that would be acceptable. That number gave me the option of ordering online from a NYS health department site, so I went there, and it directed me to a third-party vendor that handled it all. The NYS site said it would cost $46. The vendor charged me $16. I was worried that I'd gotten the wrong thing, so I tried every possible configuration, and it was always $16.

They tried to sell me FedEx for an additional $14, saying this would cut the delivery time from 14 bidness days to 5. Well, maybe for suckers. It doesn't take any 10 bidness days to snail mail anything from Barfalo to Fort TomCollins. So I paid for just the regular shipping. I got the certificate on Saturday, which was 3 days later (2 bidness days - and FedEx wouldn't have delivered on Saturday unless I paid $25 instead of $14 extree).

The Fort TomCollins DMV is a rather farcical place. It has a screener at the door who checks all your documentation before assigning you a number in the queue. Then it has 1 to 4 front counter workers, one cashier, and one photographer. They all rotate positions about every 30 minutes, and the rotation inserts about a 10-minute bubble into each station where nothing gets done other than one person logging out and then the next logging in. I was 15th in line. They averaged one person every 6 minutes during my stay. We only suffered through one computer crash at the photography station, which took that station offline for 20 minutes, so three people had to queue up again for photos. It was back to normal by the time I got to it, except the cashier had gone to lunch, and the photographer was covering both stations. So I had to wait about 10 extra minutes for the photo shoot.

The most interesting aspect was that there seemed to be an excess of middle-aged fat women behind the counter wearing winter jackets and drinking mugs of coffee. They stood around and kvetched about how cold it was back there behind the counter for a while, then one of them would go, open up a front counter station, wait on one person, then return to the gaggle, at which point one of the others would head up to the station and open it. As I said above, it takes about 10 minutes to log on/off from a station, so despite the fact that there was sometimes four windows open, on average I think there was about 1.5. One dude sat there the whole time, never got up and pushed through people at a rate of about one every 10 minutes. The remaining 3 staff members managed to bring the throughput up to one every 6 minutes, so all together, they accounted for less than one dude worth of work.

The dude, who happened to be the same guy that didn't like my birth certificate last week, made a joke. He was asking if I was wearing contact lenses, and I said yes. He asked if I could drive without them, and I said, "No. I can't see a thing without them."

He said, "Well, that can be a blessing in some circumstances." Then he used facial and eye motions to indicate a couple of the women around him without pointing or actually looking at them. Then he cracked up.

DMV humor.

The Mrs. is much calmer today. The calm before the storm. She actually managed to do the one remaining chore she had planned for the impending arrival of her moother (clean the basement bathroom). She's happier when she's completed her chores, though she puts in artificial roadblocks to that happiness. For instance, this visit, she decided that she had to get all the Christmas shopping done and all the gifts wrapped prior to preparing for her moother's arrival. So this is what caused most of the nuttiness yesterday.

HannieC and I checked out the shooting range today. Then The Mrs. came out and wanted a turn. The Mrs. shot very well, but she was using the bench with rifle rest that I had HannieC set up on. This is cuz HannieC can barely lift the pellet gun. The Mrs. is quite a good shooter. All those years of musical instrument training has given her excellent fine motor controls. Now that we're on CO, I can get her a nice .357 for her nightstand. California always frowned on that kind of thing.

MaxieC is upstairs yelling at something. I don't know what. Nobody else is home. I needs to go check on that.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Day 2 of 9. PM report

HannieC is funny as hell sometimes. I don't want to turn into a mommyblogger, but I'm going to relate two stories:

Yesterday, we were at Old Chicago for dinner. HannieC was having me read something to her from The Childrens' menu, and I was doing my bad Russian accent. She leaned over to my ear and whispered:
Daddy. I have to tell you something. Right now you're sounding an awful lot like a Canadian.

Then, today we were out back, and I was cleaning and refilling the ponds. HannieC came up to me and complained that she couldn't find any "pet quality" bugs. I explained that it was winter, and all the bugs went underground for the winter. She said:
But it's warm outside now. What kind of Democrat bug would go down into the cold ground to get warm when it's warm up here?
So, now I know that my darling daughter uses the words "Canadian" and "Democrat" to mean "idiot." That's what you get for having a certified super-genius, I suppose.

Right on schedule, The Mrs. began to melt down today. She always goes absolutely insane about 2 days prior to her mother visiting. I think it was exactly 50 hours before the flight lands this time. Somewhere around 3-3:30ish she want bazonkers. I had just started to make the pellet gun backstop, and somehow this triggered some kind of panic attack in The Mrs. Can't really explain it, but everyone ended up hollering. About an hour later, everything returned to normal. The Mrs. came out to say, "What have you been doing all this time? You've been working on this thing for two hours already and you haven't done a thing!"

Quite the contrary, I had been working for only one hour, and I had already cut the board in half, modified the hinges with the Dremel tool (they did not open as far as I needed), disciplined HannieC for trying to kick her mother, pushed MaxieC around on his tricycle, rescued many tools from the clutches of MaxieC, listened to HannieC complain about how mean I was, listened to HannieC complain about how mean The Mrs. was, picked up most of the toys in the backyard, put away the hose that I had used to fill the ponds, helped The Mrs. find a wire on which to hang a Christmas Tree ornament she had made while it dried, and spilled my Keystone Ice. All The Mrs. recognized, of course, was that I had cut the board in half.

I took me two hours from cradle to grave with the backstop. I didn't end up using the 2x4 legs, as I ground the hinges to only open to as far as I wanted. I also attached the foam so that it met perfectly there and also helped hold the right angle. I expect it'll all fall apart soon, and I'll have to do the legs, too. But it was getting dark and cold.

The neighbor lady across the street came over after dinner with her three childrens. Her hubsband got to go down to Denver for the football game (lucky bastard), so she came to hang with us for a while. The five childrens were pretty well behaved, though MaxieC managed to throw some kinda toy at one of the other kids, and that caused some crying and all. Nothing major.

Our dear neighbor brought over some margaritas that she had mixed up yesterday but that she felt were too strong to drink. She handed me a 12oz glass and said, "You'll probably only want to drink that much of this," denoting about 1/3 of the glass. The Mrs. and I exchanged a knowing glance, and I said, "You don't know me all that well, do you?"

I made the ladies black Russians. They did not want to try Minty Freshes. I don't know why. Probably all the smack talking about mixing red and green. Though The Mrs. claims it's because she can't imagine having lime juice mixed with Creme de Cacao. Their loss.

The margaritas were standard-strong, I would say. Nothing special. I enjoyed the glass, though I transferred it into an on-the-rocks glass a little at a time so as not to look like a craven drunkard.

I also vacuumed the first floor and the stairs to the cellar. I did this so that the neighbor would think that The Mrs. is an exceptional house keeper. But I was four stairs from being done when the company showed up. Our dear neighbor said, "I hope you didn't vacuum on our account." So I replied, "No. I vacuum every day after dinner. It's part of my chores that The Mrs. assigned me."

I'm not sure anyone bought that story.

Day 2 of 9. AM report.

Checking in on the second day of nine in a row with the fambly.

This morning, when I hauled my butt out of bed around 8am (it was my turn to sleep in - we take turns again, and this is what got me unbanned from blogging), The Mrs. announced that she and HannieC were going Christmas shopping. That leaves MaxieC home with me. I can't figure out what to do with ourselves. All MaxieC wants to do is watch Pixar moovies. He's sitting there in his jammies (won't put on his clothes) watching the tail end of Toy Story 2 and eating candy corn right now. [Oop - just ended. Now he's watching Finding Nemo.]

What a life.

Today I am planning to build HannieC a pellet backstop commensurate with her shooting skills. Mean, really really big. I bought some material last weekend for it - an 4x8 sheet of 1/2" OSB and 2 2x8 sheets of 2" rigid foam insulation. My plan is to cut the OSB roughly in half to end up with 2 4x4 sheets, cover these sheets on one side with the rigid foam, and then set one on the floor and lean the other at ~45 degrees above it to form the backstop. The idea being that anything that hits the backstop and doesn't stop in the foam will ricochet down to the piece on the floor, where it has another 2" of foam. Nothing will get past that. Lead pellets really lose their energy pretty fast on impact, but HannieC managed to ricochet a bunch back all the way to the shooting station at the old house.

There, I was using a 45 degree canted piece of OSB as a backstop, no foam, and just the concrete floor of the garage. I would lean the backstop against the bench on which I set the pellet target/ trap.

Now, as I get closer to the construction of this one, I start to fret the details. For instance, I'm not sure I want to just lean the backstop up against the bench. I'm thinking I actually want to put some hinges or something back there to attach it to the floor piece and keep its foot from sliding out. I am also thinking I should put some 2x4 legs up front to hold it up rather than leaning it against the bench.

Then, if I put legs up there, I'm going to need to cover those with some foam or something. Maybe a piece of surplus carpet. And I'll need the router to cut angled notches into the 2x4's so that they mate properly with the backstop. So I'll need a trip to Lowe's for hinges and 2x4's (since they wouldn't move any of my lumber, I have to buy new lumber for every project now). This will end up being a big, day-long build by the time I'm done over-designing it. The Mrs. will probably holler. But I'll let HannieC help, and that'll make it easier on everyone but me.

And it'll give me an excuse to finish up that 3.2 Heineken that's in the fridge. Nothing goes better with power tools than 3.2 beer.

I'm also thinking of upgrading my Christmas tree lights to LED this year. Average LED life is 20,000 hours. That's pretty darned good. Problem is, they cost like 5x what normal lights cost. Most of our light strings have gone bad lately, so I need to buy new anyways. I'll have to see if I can find them on sale somewhere.

I'll check in again later.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

My Artistic Creation

After a while of reading all this artsy stuff on Thoughts, one gets to wondering if really blogging is enough of an artistic outlet. Apparently, it's overwhelming for some, but for me, I feel I can contribute So Much More. Plus, I spent the whole day at the Denver Museum of Natural History with The Mrs. and The Childrens, so I'm pretty much climbing the walls already. And it's only the first day of nine consecutive days in a row I have with The Fambly.

Vacation time can be a curse as well as a blessing.

So I decided to create something that would bring joy to the world. Something beside my incredibly humorous blog, that is.

Without further adieu, here it is. The first Original CherkyB Cocktail:

Minty Fresh

1.25 oz Vodka
0.5 oz Triple Sec
0.5 oz Creme de Menthe
0.5 oz Creme de Cacao
splash of Grenadine
Juice of 1/2 lime

Stir. Serve over ice.

Drinker's impressions:

Has a look kinda halfway between iced tea and flat coke. The Creme de Menthe (green) and Grenadine (red) combine to make what would otherwise look like to total chick drink end up looking kinda nasty and uninviting. Ah, but with the first sip, all trepidations melt away. The primary flavor is the mintiness of the Creme de Menthe, but the finish is vaguely reminiscent of Tootsie Rolls. Damned if I can figure out why, but there it is. Might call for a cherry or a slice of orange. Will have to work on that aspect of it.

Does anyone know how to submit a drink recipe to Webtender?

Friday, November 17, 2006

OK, here's something marginally interesting

A while back I blegged for the identification of Chinese food. Because I know that my readership is mainly a bunch of newbs, I linked to a wikipedia page that defines a bunch of blog lingo. Apparently, The Mrs. follows all the links, as a couple days later, this transpired:
The Mrs.: Who is this Steph "yoga mom" person?
Me, CherkyB: She's someone I used to work with on debug back in SC.
The Mrs.: She's a Mommyblogger.
Me, CherkyB: Yeah. That's why I don't link to her.
The Mrs.: But so is CJ.
Me, CherkyB: Hmmm. I guess he is since he had the second kid.
Alright CJ. You're on notice now. Spend too long as a mommyblogger, and I'll have to delete your link.

It seems most everyone else I link to, plus Me, CherkyB, are borebloggers.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

It's Interesting

If you can figure out what it is, please let me know. I can't think of anything interesting right now.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Duh or No Duh &trade 2

Tonight at dinner the lovely HannieC told me a joke she made up:

HannieC: Knock Knock

Me, CherkyB: Who's there?

HannieC: Cactus

Me, CherkyB: Cactus who?

HannieC: Cactus says, "If you kiss me, I'll poke you."

HannieC: Do you get it? Huh? Huh? See, cuz a cactus has those pricky things, and if you kiss it, you'll get poked by the pricky things. See?
No duh. ™

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Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Old Salt Ale

I'd like to take a moment to further describe the story behind me drinking an Old Salt Ale that I mentioned yesterday. You see, it went like this:

I was on my way to Hudson, Mass. for a bidness trip. I had not been in Hudson since 1995 when I interviewed for a job with what was then Digital Equipment Corp. Oddly enough, the bidness trip I was on was to the same building in which I was interviewed then, only now my present company owns it. When I got to the airport, I discovered three other people from work were on the same flight as I: my boss, a guy named StackyB (no relation), and another guy I had heard of but never met. There were a bazillion people from my site traveling to Hudson, all for different reasons. There were at least four different meetings between our teams going on at the same time. But I digress.

After we got our luggage in Boston, the other folks decided we were going to stop at Legal Seafood in Framingham for dinner. So we went there. Everyone else had been there before, I think. After selecting my dinner from the dinner menu, my eyes drifted to the separate drink menu, as they are wont to do. It was loaded with all kinds of nasty-nasty sounding cocktails (how many different ways are there to ruin a martini with fruit juice, I wonder?) and one and only one beer: the aforementioned Old Salt Ale. I read the description. It claimed that it was brewed by the Harpoon Brewery, which is actually known for pretty good craft brews. It claimed that it was specially brewed to complement seafood, which I was planning to eat. Then it said, "served with or without salt on the rim and with a lemon wedge."

This was a red flag. I made some comment about that not sounding like a particularly manly beer, but as always happens with the FC crowd, this was met with a challenge to not be so uptight.

Oddly, for Colorado, not many folks at work seem to have even the most rudimentary understanding of the rules of manhood. Like finishing your beer. Like not drinking fruity drinks with umbrellas. Like drinking whiskey of any kind without mixing it with Dr. Thunder. I scanned the dinner menu, too, and no beers were listed there. I craned my neck to look around, and no beer taps were to be seen anywhere. So, given that I was with my boss and StackyB, both of whom I have to marginally impress in some way in order to keep the cash rolling in to support The Mrs. in the lavish lifestyle to which she has become accustomed, and given that I really really wanted a beers after flying in cattle class on United Airlines for 4 hours and then driving in a cheap rental car for an hour, I decided to not be so uptight. I took the plunge and ordered the Old Salt Ale with my dinner.

The waiter said, "Would you like that with salt on the rim?" I answered with a resounding, "No!" He said, "Have you ever tried it with salt around the rim? It's much better that way."

Now, I can put and two together as well as the next guy, in particular if it's almost 9pm and I haven't had my first beers yet. The waiter is telegraphing to me that this beer is crap-o-la without the salt. He was like a 20-ish year old dude and didn't look the least bit fru-fru, so I figured maybe he knew what he was talking about. I ordered up the salt. The other two guys also followed suit, since they didn't want to be out-adventured by me.

The only thing about this whole scenario that wasn't a mistake was getting the salt. I took the first swig with full salt. Yeeeargh, that's bad beer! I took another swig from the same spot, now cleared of salt from the first swig. York york york, that's even worse! Then I did something I never in my life expected to do.

I mentally figured out the optimum swig size for the beer. Too big, and I risked ralphing. To small, and I risked running out of salt before finishing the "beer." I weighted it a little towards the ralphing side of the risk matrix, as it seemed like that failure mode had a smaller downside than running out of salt. I put my plan into effect, and all came out well. No ralphing, and I had a little salt to spare at the end. I can't help myself; I'm an engineer. This is what I do.

As an aside, yesterday on the way back from lunch, we were discussing desserts. This is because one of the guys knew one of the managers at the restaurant at which we at, and the manager had come out at the end and given us each a coupon for free dessert. We didn't use the coupons as we had already paid up and were set to leave. But we were discussing what kinds of desserts the place had. It's one of the minor Italian chains, so naturally someone mentioned they had tiramisu. I noted how tiramisu was like a classic chick dessert, and then I did a mocking impression of a woman gushing over tiramisu.

At this point, MoodyT interjected that I had an awful lot of hangups about man vs. woman stuff, and he was starting to suspect I was probably secretly gay. Those of you who know MoodyT will appreciate the irony in this. But, it underscores how most of these guys out here have no idea about the rules of manhood, and they mistake an adherence to traditional manliness rules for closeted sexual confusion. The Democrats have gotten to these kids. It's a good thing I'm here now.

As a second aside, I got to witness some true talent on Wednesday night. Still in Hudson, I went out with a few of the guys - MoustachioP, Cavitation, and WoodyWoody - for food and drinks after a long, long day at work. Normally, I'd be the top of the food chain at this kind of event, but WoodyWoody put on a clinic. I was in awe of his superior skills. I interoffice mailed him a copy of "Modern Drunkard Magazine" as an homage when I returned to FC. (He's back in SC.) Cavitation put up a small battle, and MoustachioP never got much past the starting gate, so I think I came in a distant second.

Though I caution you, this is not a competition. Please, no wagering.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

There's a face off in the corner

Way back when we were planning to move to FC, HannieC raised numerous objections about how she'd miss all her friends, in particular that JoeyG boy down the street that she was planning to marry, and miss all her teachers, and all that rot. So, as a good parent, I tried to soothe her fears.

With bribery.

I told her that after we moved, we'd get an air hockey table. This was because many of the houses we had looked at had air hockey tables, and HannieC and MaxieC became addicted. To the point that we have to pay to use the coin-op ones whenever we come across on in a hotel or bowling alley or where ever.

Now, as I child, I had had a cheap air hockey table. My brother, SunshineBand, and I had played for many many hours over a number of years until eventually the motor fell off. That turned out to be unfixable.

A week ago Saturday, I had to drop HannieC off at a birthday party at Windsor Main Park, and then I had some errands to run. Mostly, I had to go to the liquor store cuz we were having our neighbors over for dinner. Despite filling a shopping cart completely at the liquor store (they give a 15% discount on wine if you buy at least 12 bottles), I was left with a little time to kill before it was time to pick up HannieC.

So I went to the local pool table/bar stool/foosball/air hockey store. There, they had a wonderful selection of four air hockey tables. Two of them were quickly dismissed due to the lack of electronic scoring. The other two were a tough call. Both were deeply discounted from their "regular" price. I finally decided to go with the one that had a black-light overhead and fluorescent green pucks and rails for ultra-cool glow-in-the-dark action. Thing is, I couldn't get it home that day. I would need help.

I was out of town (in Hudson, Mass. - more on that later if I get permission to start blogging again) Mon-Thurs, so my next chance to pick it up was Friday. Friday came, and I poked around looking for all my "friends". Needless to say, I was only able to scare up CJ, since most of my "friends" are remarkably unreliable. I was a little worried that CJ might not be a very good furniture mover due to unfortunate ethnic stereotypes that are imprinted upon me.

But I shook that off.

On the way to the store, as we were walking to our vehicles, CJ asked if it weighed very much, because he wasn't very good at lifting heavy things. Hmmm...

I said, "I dunno. Maybe 100lbs." As I check the web page, I see I missed that by a factor of 3. Oops.

We got it disassembled in short order, and then lugged it to the truck, taking many rests along the way and suspecting that my 100lbs. estimate wasn't all that accurate. We loaded it up, and I got to teach CJ how to use ratchet tie downs. This is an important skill for a man to have. Not as important as being able to lift heavy things, but important nonetheless.

See, that's Me, CherkyB, always trying to teach people things. I'm a regular altruist.

When we got it home, I enlisted the help of The Mrs. in hauling the thing down the stairs to the basement. Now, The Mrs. ain't all that good at lifting heavy things, either. But I figured between the two of them, they'd probably add up to a decent-sized man.

That turned out to be about as accurate as my 100lbs. But I got out my furniture dolly, and we got to wheel it everywhere except down the stairs. We charged the stairs with great gusto. I took the bottom, hefted it up, and began walking down the stairs. The Keystone Cops at the other end immediately broke into disarray, with The Mrs. barking orders at CJ and complaining that he wasn't carrying his load, and CJ running around like a chicken with its head cut off in an effort to placate The Mrs. and be useful at the same time.

Meanwhile, I basically just pulled the table downstairs and hoped that one or both of them might lay a hand on it long enough to soften the crash as their end dropped from step to step. This elicited a lot of instructions from The Mrs. about how I was going too fast.

We made it almost to the bottom when a "rest" was declared for the two at the top. Me, CherkyB, well I got to stand at the bottom holding up my end while their end rested happily three steps up. I suppose I got to stand still while shouldering my burden, which maybe counts as a rest.

I was reminded of a similar situation carrying a sleeper sofa up to the master bedroom sitting area of the San Schmose house with Spanky and The Mrs. CJ is my new Spanky, except that Spanky was a much, much better drinker. And conversationalist.

I'm working on both those things with CJ. Check back in about a year. CJ, like the Spanky before him, has a heart of gold and is always willing to lend a hand. So I say these things are area of development, not as areas of improvement required.

Here, at long last, is a shot of the air hockey table in its first hours. As you can see from this and all pictures of MaxieC, he is a very morose and introspective child. I hope he grows out of it.

Here's the rear quarter shot. If this were a car, it'd look better from this angle. I'm not sure it adds much to the air hockey table.

I tried to capture a shot of the blacklight-lit tabletop, but damned if my digital camera doesn't make it look all terrible. Pretend this is an eerie glow.

While we were setting up the air hockey table, the mattress delivery guys showed up to bring us our new guest room and master bedroom mattresses. I hung up the blinds on Saturday morning, and that concluded the Guest Room project. Here are a couple photos The Mrs. snapped. The room anxiously awaits the arrival of Fat Moother for Thanksgiving.

When I was in Hudson, I was snookered into drinking a vile concoction called "Old Salt Ale" at dinner the first night. This turns out to be a wheat beer served with salt around the rim of the glass and a lemon floating in it. I took a picture of it because I didn't think anyone would believe that I would order such a thing. I blame jet lag. I managed to choke it down, as a man always finishes his beer. But I had to quickly quaff a Sam Adams to wash the taste out of my mouth.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Duh, or No Duh? &trade

I have a wonderful installment of Something Not to Do ™, but I talked it over with The Mrs. at lunch, and we decided I shouldn't post it. I couldn't figure out a way to post it without causing some trouble, and neither could she.

So instead, I'm going to start a new, parallel series called "Duh, or No Duh? ™" which will feature Certified True ™ stories that will all end with either, "Duh," or, "No Duh."

The irony here, for my many readers who perhaps grew up in one or more of those poor, sad countries where they do not speak English, is that "duh" and "no duh" are frequently used interchangeably, much the way "I couldn't care less" and "I could care less" are. Technically, "duh" means "you figured that all out by yourself, you moron" and "no duh" means "just because you're a moron doesn't mean you should assume I am too, you moron." Fairly subtle differences that you the Me, CherkyB reader will now be aware of such that you can be sure to choose the correct phrase in the future. You're not going to get that kind of education on The JohnnyB, that's for sure.

So, now that I've introduced the series, let's jump right into the first installment. It all began yesterday, when CJ was helping me pick up the air hockey table I had purchased on the Saturday before. (More on that later, if I can get permission from The Mrs. to start blogging again.) After the table was all set up in the basement and The Childrens were playing on it, I gave CJ the tour of the house, since he'd never been here before.

When I showed him the bar, I opened up the cupboards to show the stock. It looked like this:

CJ said, "Wow. I thought you drank it all before the move. You must have restocked."

Duh. ™

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Friday, November 10, 2006

Banned from Blogging

You may have noticed how I haven't posted anything for a while. Not even a comment on one of the insipid blogs I link to. Well, I got temporarily banned from blogging. The Mrs. hadn't been getting much sleep, and I was going out of town for 4 days (M-Th), so she very graciously asked if I could stop wasting all my time with you idiots and concentrate on her. Or else she accused me of having an affair with one of my commenters (nearly all of whom, you will note, are womens). I'm not 100% certain, because when The Mrs. doesn't get much sleep, she doesn't make a whole lot of sense, and it's best not to push for clarity.

So I took about a week off. We got new mattresses delivered today (one for us and one for the guest room), so The Mrs. will be sleeping much better starting tonight. I expect to resume some blogging over the weekend. I have so much to share.

Thursday, November 02, 2006


[A parody]

It's official: The Childrens love Halloween!

They loved everything. Dressing up, face painting, knocking on the door, saying trick-or-treat, saying thank you, getting candy, getting candy, getting candy...

On a different note, we got Chinese take-out today from some place owned by a long-lost relative of someone I used to work with back in SC. The Mrs. had this:

She really liked it, but she couldn't remember what it was she ordered. Was it Hunan beef? Szcheuan Beef? Mongolian Beef? Well, I don't know. I wasn't there when she ordered it. So, given my remarkably generous nature, I'm going to do my first bleg. Just what exactly is this? And don't say it's JackyB's butt. If you can identify this dish, maybe I can convince The Mrs. to write-up her flu/bowling/hospital story.

Comment blogging

Today, I had nothing cohesive to write about. Yet, I felt I needed to write something given the prolific nature of my competition over at Thoughts in the USA. However, I still really had nothing to say. So I did the next best thing. I spent a couple hours posting comments to other blogs. Not my best work, which I save for my paying customers here, but it gave me a creative outlet with very low standards. All I had to do was be better than the other commenters, which isn't all that hard if you read the quality of comments on most blogs.

This one I like to call "Mutiny on the Ellie". In fact, I'm renaming her blog that just as soon as I can crack her password. It doesn't seem to be "Exisabiga-hole" or "Ishouldhavekeptthecats323". I may have to rename the blog through the powers of persuasion. That might be tough from 2000 miles away and without any communication contact whatsoever (phone, email, YM, etc.). I have to use brain waves, and I'm not sure mine make it out of the basement even. Like, a lot of times, I'll be thinking, "Bring me a beer. Bring me a beer," and nobody brings me one. Oddly, those powers seem to work a lot better if I'm at a bar, as after usually not more than a couple minutes of concentrated thought, a waitress will appear from nowhere and ask if I want a beer.

Since tomorrow is Fat Camp, and I'll be at a bar, I'll try thinking real hard about how Ellie should rename her blog. Then I'll check back Friday. She'll probably be asleep when I'm thinking it, so she'll wake up thinking that a new blog name came to her in a dream and is thus either an epiphany or a message from God, or both given the slightly overlapping definitions. Then she'll head straight to the compooter to change the blog name, only she'll check on her eBay auctions first, and then by the time she's done with that, she'll have forgotten.

So there's really no hope that on Friday morning you'll go to see if there's finally, finally a new post on Ellie323 and discover it's now called "Mutiny on the Ellie". But you should all still check, because as I learned from the children's classic, "Two Frogs in Trouble," where there is life, there is hope.

One or more of you might have a life.

Then, after commandeering Ellie323, I had to add my two cents worth into the ongoing saga regarding JackyB and the sudden celebrity of his big-giant butt. He's even become a celebrity at work, given that I have multiple readers back at his location who all hit the site today. And then I had to leave a big-giant comment on the latest post at Thoughts just because.

After all that, I have nothing left for you.

I was thinking of posting some photos of The Childrens in their Halloween costumes, but I don't do requests. Sorry Steph.