Thursday, July 31, 2008

I thought I had a birth certificate for this...

During my daily (weekdays only…just like this blog) Wii Fit workout, I find out my Wii Fit Age. It takes into account my weight and how well I do on the balance tests. Yesterday I was 34.

But today, while there was a lull in the radio business (in-between after I recorded the weather forecast and before I went to play golf) I took an online survey to determine my RealAge, a service of, which is a whole online community of people who (apparently) like to be told what to do on a regular basis regarding their health.

They asked questions about how well (or not) I’m taking care of myself, what I eat, and what size car I drive (and how fast I drive it).

They were more questions than the SAT’s. I answered all of them as truthfully as I could, but I couldn’t remember some details and had to choose “I don’t know.”

When I got the results back, I was 43 according to the answers I gave them. They penalized me for not knowing my last blood pressure reading, for eating more than four ounces of red meat per week and for not voting for Al Gore in 2000.

I was also penalized for wasting time taking an online survey when I could be out exercising.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

A song in your heart...

Sung to the tune of "The Ballad of Jed Clampett"

Now listen to a story about a man named me
When it came to home repairs…he was clueless as can be

He didn’t have a drill, he didn’t have a saw
And he thought that hammerin' nails…was agin’ the law

Boom boom boom boom, boom boom boom boom...

Handy, he’s not…two left thumbs…inept

First thing you know, Ol’ me is on the phone
Calling all the con-trac-tors there is to be known

Was heard to be asking, can you come and take a look?
I got no help from my home repair book.

Boom boom boom boom, Boom boom boom boom...

Useless…education…liberal arts…

We all get this idea that we can call a bunch of contractors and get quotes in order to make a decision, like we are some large corporation or something. In reality, we just hope SOMEONE will come and agree to do the work.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

The dentist is a righteous dude, man...

I went to the dentist yesterday for a cleaning and a crown.

I took my IPOD.

It occurred to me while they were putting the gas mask on me and numbing my mowf that it must be a heck of a profession when it’s preferable to your clients to disengage four of their five senses in order to be able to tolerate your work.

(Note: I go one step further. I keep my eyes closed. For two reasons: Number one, I don’t want to see the needle approaching and number two, it makes the intensity of the gas stronger.)

Now the gas doesn’t block out one of the five senses, as defined, unless it is common sense. Who in their right mind would let people take a drill to their teeth? But, with a couple of whiffs of the gas, I’m amenable to anything, including mowing my lawn and eating mayonnaise.

(maybe not mayonnaise)

A lot of years ago, I worked at a Country Club with some dentists on the membership roster. They were young guys, so just for fun one day I asked them about the gas. Did they use it for recreation purposes?

They got this strange look on their faces, looked at each other, then explained that it was unethical and illegal and every month in their dentistry newsletter there were stories of people being prosecuted for personal use of the gas. They were very serious.

They talked for a long time about it (speaking rather quickly, if I recall)…but they never answered the question.

Monday, July 28, 2008

I'm coming home tomorrow with a haircut and a name...

One of the hardest things (for me) in moving to a new place is finding someone to cut your hair.

I never know where to go. I’m not really a Barber Shop person…I want an appointment to show up for…I don’t want to wait and read the paper or talk about the government. And the other places (the salons), I never know if it’s a place a man can get his hair cut and pay a man’s hair cut price or if they are going to try to talk me into a facial and a pompadour.

I’m not a complicated haircut person. I just want to arrive, get it cut and get out of their way.

I don’t want a lot of conversation. It makes me uncomfortable. It’s okay, I need no pretense of interest in my life, I just want my hair cut.

The fact that I had my hair cut by the same person for 7 years without knowing her name is proof of this. It’s not that I’m not willing to be friendly, it’s just that I didn’t figure she was interested (I didn’t catch her name the first time she cut my hair and I was too embarrassed to ask) in me, save the $12 plus tip I paid every so often.

(Holli started going there and told me her name is Anna. But she only told me right before we moved here, so I’m back where I started.)

When I was at Casa de Campo, I had my hair cut by a girl named Yvette. It was great. She didn’t speak English. And while my Spanish was okay, we just pretty much skipped the conversation.

(Holli had to tell me her name too.)

Friday, July 25, 2008

Twenty pages would have been excessive...

We deposited the funds from the sale of our house today.

It was half of what we would have gotten if we had sold it at our asking price, and about 60% of what we really expected, but the offer, while insulting, was made with two provisions: no inspection and close within 7 days. As it was, it closed in 6 days.

It included a 19-page document explaining why the offer was so low (i.e. why our house sucked so bad). It had pictures of hideous things underneath the house. I didn’t bother to look at it. I have no interest in the nether-world of my former residence. Last I checked, I lived IN the house, not underneath it.

Our realtor, a trusted friend for almost a decade, was in favor of a counter-offer. We weren’t and we didn’t. We signed it and sent it back.

If they cheated us…so what. It’s all just speculation to say we could have gotten more. What I didn’t want to say was they we could have accepted their offer, but didn’t. And every month we were going to pay the mortgage payment and the utilities until it sold. As it was, we only paid one month that we didn’t live there after we put it on the market. And we didn’t have a crystal ball to know if a better offer would come soon, if at all.

When the offer came…we were moving into our new house.

Bird in the hand, man…bird in the hand.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

If you need me, I'll be out in the garage looking for my sunroof...

What a difference a day makes.

More on that in a second…it’s time for the Real Country Music lyric of the day:
When I was just a little boy we lived down on a farm
Seven miles from nowhere and a hundred miles from harm
We made our livin' from the dirt if anything would grow
And we got our country music from a big old radio

As I was saying, what a difference a day makes.

Yesterday I wrote: I’ve been trying to fix the DSL and internet connection that we have (or don’t have) at our house. I have the AT&T Help Desk phone number memorized. My phone call every night is rapidly getting more of a sarcastic tone. Just hearing them answer “Help Desk” gets me angry. It’s a “No Help Desk,” so far.

But today a guy came out and replaced the modem and it works fine.

Yesterday I wrote: The dryer made a funny sound so I carted it off to the appliance extortionist. It’s still not back at the house. I have no idea what this will cost, nor any way to argue that it’s too high. I have no knowledge in this area. I'm really kind of mad about it.

But today I got it back and it was $75. It could have been worse.

Yesterday I wrote: I have four phone jacks in the house and the placement of only one of them makes any sense. It’s in our bedroom. There isn’t one in the kitchen, if you can believe it. I can't believe how stupid it is.

But today I went to the store and bought stuff. Everything now works and is strategically (enough) placed. There is a phone in the kitchen now.

Yesterday I wrote: When I bought my car I was disappointed that it didn’t have a plug for my IPOD, but I wasn’t going to make a car purchase based on it. It was just one of those things. I wanted a sunroof, but the car I needed to buy (for budget and other concerns) didn’t have that either.

But today I noticed a small hole for a plug in the lower left hand corner of the radio.

I don’t know what the moral of this story (or post) is, but I wish someone would hurry up and tell me.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

I also bought a can of spinach...

Whenever I hear of anyone having a kidney stone, I immediately go buy Cranberry Juice.

For years it was a fact that drinking Cranberry Juice (just buying it doesn’t help…it’s like your treadmill or bowflex…you have to use it) can prevent this affliction.

But if you type “Kidney Stones Prevented by Cranberry Juice” into Google, you get the equivalent of an online-brawl.

On the “WHAT? THAT’S CRAZY!” side you see words like “myth” and “folklore” with the occasional “preliminary research” thrown in.

On the “OH YES IT DOES!” side, you see words like “oxalates” and “citrates” to prove their point.

We take time out from this debate to ask another one of life’s important questions with the Real Country Music lyric of the day:
I met him in a hospital about a year ago
And why I still remember him I guess I'll never know
He'd lie there and cry out in a medicated fog,
"Here I am in this dang bed and who's gonna feed them hogs?"

Now thoroughly confused as to how to maintain my personal health with fruit juice (or not), I typed, “How to Prevent Kidney Stones” into Google. I got this:

1. Eat less meat.
2. Drink plenty of fluids.
3. Limit consumption of grapefruit juice and cola drinks.
4. Adopt a diet high in potassium and magnesium (ex: spinach and buckwheat flour).
5. Talk to your doctor about taking supplements such as pyridoxine and magnesium.
6. Limit your calcium and salt intake.

Immediately, I threw away my lunch (grapefruit-glazed rack of ribs and a coke) and grabbed a banana. I didn’t salt it.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

I Broke So Many Things in the Move that...

I e-bought a book called “The Ultimate Guide to Furniture Repair and Refinishing.”

I also bought a book called, “How to Delude Yourself into Thinking You Can Do Things You Never Tried Before Because You Bought a Book Online”

Shame on you,

If I had to walk into a store to buy this furniture repair book, I’d never do it in fear that the clerk would take one look at me and laugh. Kind of like me going into a GNC and buying MuscleTech Cell Tech Hardcore (it’s for body building…I looked it up on Google).

Also, if I were in the store and read any of it before I went to the checkout, I’d realize that the skills required for this are way over the level of manual dexterity and patience I currently possess.

The book I should be reading is “How to Keep All of Your Fingers Attached to Your Hand.”

Having said that, we take a break for the Real Country Music lyric of the day:
I'm a doctor,
I'm a lawyer,

I'm a movie star.
I'm an astronaut, and I own this bar.
I'd lie to you for your love.
And that's the truth.

But on Amazon, you can pretend to want to learn anything you please. Kind of like the LSAT book I bought a few years ago under the premise of going to law school. I couldn’t even bring myself to study the book to take the test to get into law school…much less the study required FOR law school. The Law does interest me…school however, doesn’t.

But this isn’t about me. This is about the shameless promotion of books that encourages people to strive for things they can’t possibly reach.

I’d write more, but I want to get back to reading, “Swimming Pool Construction Made Easy.”

Monday, July 21, 2008

A letter to the guy that was me back in 2000...

Dear Me,

I’m writing you from the future to explain something very important.

First of all, you will live to see wireless internet (yeah, no wires) and something calling blogging. You'll have a TV that will allow you to record what you are watching while you are watching it and then go back while you are still watching it live...and then back again.

Buy a Wii as soon as you can. I know, it's a game system, but you won't believe it.

But here is really why I am writing you:

Marry that blonde girl you met at church last week. She's as wonderful as you think she is right now. Yeah, she will drag you down the path to parenthood (kicking and screaming), but go. It is every bit the pain in the ass that you’ve ever thought it would be, but it will be worth it.

You’ll get up every morning around 6:30 hearing the words, “Daddy” over and over again until you go get them. The girl will be ready to go, but the boy will be grumpy for a few minutes. Try to deal with both of these traits at the same time.

You have no idea why, but I have to pause at this point to do the Real County Music lyric of the day. Note: You might want to listen to Country every once in a while…it will come in handy…trust me.
I pulled in this country kitchen
To try their brand of barbecue
The sign said finger-lickin'
Well I paid the tab and the lady asked me
How'd I like my biscuit
I'll be honest with you ma'am
It ain't like mama fixed it

You’ll never take a nap in the middle of the day again. You’ll never go to the bathroom without the fear of a barging-in. Forget using the computer while they are awake.

Things won’t be the same. And that will be a good thing.

So do something smart for once (and for much more than just the kids)...marry that girl.


Friday, July 18, 2008

No Real Country Music lyric of the day…but I have my health…sort of…

I got my cholesterol reading back last Friday and it didn’t take long for Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Tennessee to respond.

I’m covered for everything except medication to treat high cholesterol. So I’ve composed a letter thanking them for their speedy response.

Dear Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Tennessee:

I am writing to thank you for the quick response regarding the coverage you are giving me and my family. As I am self-employed, it is very important that my family has the best medical coverage we could find. We received the information packet and have begun to read it. Our monthly check for $724.56 is in the mail.

However, we are confused by your motivation to NOT cover me for any medication relating to the treatment of high cholesterol. We understand that you will NEVER cover me for this, (your letter was quite clear) but we are perplexed as to why. Please read the following possibilities and let us know which one(s) applies to my situation.

1. A reading of 339 isn’t very high, and therefore, in the opinion of the BCBS of Tennessee, I’m just fine without the medication. Why should you pay for something I don’t need?
2. The medication is more expensive than the cost of any heart attack I might have or my cholesterol number is so high that you don’t figure I’ll make it to the emergency room anyway…
3. The very existence of the medication is a scam perpetrated by the medical and pharmaceutical industries…therefore you won’t pay for it.
4. You want to take my money but not pay any benefits.

To help you along with your choices, I certainly will believe #4. I also believe #3, which would make part of #1 true.

And #2 is just cruel. But I’m not ruling it out.

However, It’s not all bad. I do want to thank you. After I got your letter, I realized that I don’t have to go for any more cholesterol screenings. No more fasting and giving blood the next morning. It’s now officially a waste of time. I mean, what happens if it gets higher? I’m still not covered. And if it gets lower (a lot lower, I would guess), it doesn’t need to be (in the opinion of the medical industry) treated.

Just to let you know, to celebrate my liberation from giving blood for useless tests, my tired veins and I (along with the family) went to Corky’s BBQ (local joint) for dinner. I had tamales with chili and cheese.

We look forward to your response. But hurry, as I’ve just opened a bag of pork rinds, my bratwurst is almost ready to come off the grill and my left arm feels all tingly and numb.


Thursday, July 17, 2008

Uh oh, here comes Angie...

It’s taken me about 180 posts on this blog to remember a problem I have had for years.

I’ve never known anyone, or been around, or seen, a murder. I think I’m normal in this.

(This isn’t the problem I’m speaking of…)

My problem is with the show, Murder, She Wrote.

The star of the show, Angela Lansbury (playing Jessica Fletcher) was not a detective. She merely traveled around and everywhere she went, someone got killed. I could understand if she was a cop. But she was a writer.

And a murder magnet. There were 264 (in 12 years) episodes of the show and a Murder, I assume, in each of them. So she, unwittingly, would show up somewhere and there’d be a homicide. I think this is somewhat suspicious. What are the odds?

This is an excellent opportunity for the Real Country Music lyric of the day:
I got a letter late last night
From the woman in Cell-D
Tomorrow night's the prison dance
She wants to go with me
I'd really like to make it
I know It'd be all right
But I can't take you to the prison dance
'Cause they're hangin' me tonight

Anyway, would you want her for a friend? If she told me she was coming for a visit, I’d make sure all my close associates had their affairs in order. Also, the odds were that I would be accused of the crime until ol’ Angie pulled my fat out of the fire in the last five minutes. So not only would I have to deal with a murder in my area, I’d be under suspicion for the killing.

Who needs that?

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Also, you can call me anytime...

This sounds serious, and it is...but bear with me...

Depression affects an estimated 5% of all the people in the United States at any one time. About 20% of all people will be clinically depressed at some time in their lives.

People affected see therapists (check), take pills (check) and journal their thoughts (check) to try to deal with it. People also talk to friends (check) who can sympathize and encourage them. The friends can relate their own experiences to the one in need at the time. It helps to know that you aren’t alone.

And you’re not alone until your "friends" start screening their calls. So when the voice mail seems to be the only voice on the other end of the line, don’t despair, Country Music is your never-too-busy-to-talk-to-therapist.

First, the men. We have different problems than women (notably, women) and need to know we’re not alone in our troubles.

Wife left you?
My yellow rose of Texas packed up and left this morning
I don’t know where she’s gone and most of all I don’t know why

I'm so lonesome I could lay down and die

Wish your wife would leave you?
Oh, I got a woman
Mean as she can be

But that isn’t the whole story, is it?
Sometimes I think
She's almost mean as me

I think you see where I’m going with this (and if you aren’t, come back tomorrow…I’ll try to make more sense). It’s just that instead of talking, we can just listen to a sympathetic voice on the radio. And since the democrats haven’t yet gotten their way, you can still listen for free.

Now I’m not ignoring anyone. The ladies have problems too.

Overall bad feeling?
Sometimes it’s hard to be a woman

Wondering what it all means?
Giving all your love to just one man

You'll have bad times
And he'll have good times

Doing things that you don't understand

Need help in deciding what to do?
If you love him
Oh be proud of him
'Cause after all he's just a man

It's just that they've been there too, and they'll be there for you.

Coming Soon (not tomorrow): How Country Music Can Help You Install Your Satellite Dish

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Confusion...what is infusion?


Whether iced or hot, there's all kinds. Green tea, black tea, white tea, crimson tea, orange pekoe tea, red zinger tea, yellow jasmine tea, etc. etc.

We'll take a break (it's tea time) for the Real Country Music lyric of the day (with Earl Grey and Blueberry Scones):
Well I woke up Sunday morning,
With no way to hold my head that didn't hurt.
And the beer I had for breakfast wasn't bad,
So I had one more for dessert.

Well, anyway...people are creating them left and right. One for every color of the rainbow.

But there is one missing. And it seems glaringly obvious.

What I can’t find (anywhere) is something described as BROWN Tea.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Maybe I'll use the patch...

The world loves a quitter.

Quit smoking. Quit drinking. Quit shaving in the shower.

The only thing I can find about keeping going is “Keep on Truckin’” and “Keep on keeping on” neither of which makes any sense.

Which brings us to the Real Country Music lyric of the day:
There's a long stretch of black top underneath a cloudless sky
There's my truck, washed and gassed up just itching for a ride
If this had been six months ago, I know what I'd have done
But girl I'm running out of reasons to run

There is huge money in quitting, or at least helping people quit things. Nicotine gum, for instance. I’ve used it, even though I don't smoke. I just want the benefit of the quick energy boost of nicotine. This is why I can stay up late, blogging into the night.

Anyway, it even tastes pretty good and I don’t have to worry about getting kicked out of a restaurant or having to tamper with the smoke alarm in the lavatory on plane flights, possibly risking being tagged with a federal offense.

But what do you do when you need to quit nicotine gum?

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Sometimes they throw cheerios in my hair...

I’m not getting enough sleep and the kids couldn’t care less.

I can stay out late, stay up late or work late, but they don’t care.

They get up early every morning regardless of how I feel about it or what I did the night before. And unlike a job, you can’t call in sick, take the weekend off, or go on vacation. It’s kind of like working all the shifts at the local 7-11 during the “Slurpee for a penny” promotion.

Which brings us to the Real Country Music lyric of the day:
Sometimes I wake up;
And drag my sorry ass out of bed.
Sometimes I don't;
And I just lay there instead.

Clearly, not my story. Well, not the second half of it anyway.

I can’t tell them that there was a great movie on TV last night (or a really bad one…avoid Oceans 13 if you can…maybe the problem was that I missed Oceans 12…) and have them say, “Well, okay, why didn’t you say so? We’ll go back to sleep until around 10. Would that be okay?”

The kids play hard, sleep hard, laugh hard and cry hard. And they aren’t worried about tomorrow. It will be here soon enough (usually around 6:15 or so). They are an inspiration to us all.

Don’t get me wrong, I wouldn’t have it any other way except I wish Gracie wouldn’t ask what I’m doing when I have my head on the table during breakfast.

Friday, July 11, 2008

The other white meat...

Once upon a time there were three pigs.

(Actually, there were a lot more, but this story is only about these three.)

When it came time for them to go out into the world (and since they weren’t slaughtered upon reaching adulthood…a world of vegetarians, I suppose) the first pig built a house of straw. This was a fine idea until the landowners association found out about the substandard materials he had used and made him huff and puff and, well, you know the rest.

The second pig built a house of sticks, hoping to flip it quickly. However, the housing market tanked and he lost his hamhocks.

I know this is riveting, but we must take time out for the Real Country Music lyric of the day:
Mama was a looker
Lord, how she shined
Papa was a good'n
But the jealous kind

Papa loved Mama
Mama loved men
Mama's in the graveyard
Papa's in the pen

Anyway, the third pig found a great realtor and a great mortgage company. He signed a contract on a fine house of bricks. The local people were great. All was moving smoothly as closing day approached.

About a week before it was time to close, the out-of-town underwriter in wolf’s clothing (or was it an out-of-town wolf in underwriter’s clothing?) called his employers four different times to see if he had a job…they told him at the last minute that he couldn’t write a personal check (even though he had asked about much earlier), and that he had to get a cashiers check. Then, the out-of-town underwriter asked the pig to sign a copy of an email the pig had sent to them two days earlier detailing his work history. Then, the out-of-town underwriter asked for another employment verification…this time from someone who didn’t have the same last name as the pig, even though the pig’s family owned the company, for pete’s sake.

But the pig kept cool. He took the high road. He smiled (and we all know how hard that is for him). He was grateful for the help he got from his new neighbors, the local people who helped him out. And he spoke no ill of the out-of-town underwriters, except on his blog, where he even-handedly told his story in a way that presented the facts and let the reader decide, save for a “pete’s sake” at the end of the story, which is understandable.

And of course, they all lived happily ever after.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Read it like Rocky and Bullwinkle...

As our story opens, our heroes are trying to get cross one more hurdle in becoming legitimate citizens of the state of Tennessee. As they return for the second time with passports, social security #’s, and various documents procured at the house closing they had just attended, they are positive they will finally realize their dream: to grab the brass ring, the golden ticket, the piece of nirvana that is the Tennessee Operators (Drivers) License.

Things look rosy as they enter the building. There are only two people in the room and they are far away from the front desk. The room is clean and smells slightly of apple blossoms.

They are asked for their documents, including their North Carolina licenses. They are handed over with glee, as the Emerald City of documents looms ever so close.

With the excitement building, we take time out for the Real Country Music lyric of the day (today’s lyric isn’t about drinking…but I had to listen for a couple of hours):
Have you read any good telephone books lately?
If you ain't then let me recommend one
I've already read that Tulsa telephone book through thirteen times
If you don't know any last names it ain't much fun

Our heroes are unquestionably US Citizens, agrees the gatekeeper. But what of Tennessee residency? The four pounds of documentation that our hero has lugged to the desk contain many proofs, but none of them are on the list required by law.

No, it doesn’t matter that you have just purchased property and have bank accounts. You need a utility bill. And the heroine in the story only has one proof of Social Security, that being her Social Security card. If only you had brought your marriage license, she says. Then, she explains to our exasperated heroes, you’d be only two documents short.

Our hero keeps his cool while he slams his notebook shut. He begs a bit, but to no avail. He asks why someone would be interested in scamming a Tennessee Driver’s License. He is told he would be surprised. He is in agreement…yes, he would be surprised.

Then, from out of nowhere comes advice from a stranger on the far side of the room: “Well, if you tell them you’re from Williston, they’d give it to you. Williston’s got the bomb.”


Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Maybe I'll buy goggles...

I can’t see well enough to shower anymore.

I’m in there this morning and I’m ready to wash my hair…but I can’t see which bottle is the shampoo and which one is the conditioner.

(Usually, I use a shampoo/conditioner that is a “2 in 1,” so I don’t have to be able to see. Unfortunately, this morning the bottle sat on the bathroom counter, moved to make room for the kids’ bath toys.)

I can see the huge kangaroo, I can see the word “VOLUMIZING” (whatever that means) but I can’t see which one to use.

The Real Country Music lyric of the day (real music lyrics heard today):
Man, if I have one, I’ll have thirteen. And they can’t get me off the kareoke machine, The more I drink...the more I drink.Yeah, the more I drink, the more I drink, the more I drink.

The bottles are the same size, color and shape. They are marked the same, except for the tiny word just under “VOLUMIZING.” I’m sure the directions are different on each bottle, but they are even smaller than the words I already can’t read.

So, I just stood in there, squinting. I realize I could just open one of them and find out, but I just don’t feel like it. Having to make a choice that early in the morning might just start me down the wrong path for the entire day...I’d be constantly second-guessing myself.

And once I go in to the shower, I don’t come back out until the job is done. I hate the “shower intermission” thing. You get the floor wet, it’s cold, and the towel you use is now ruined for the drying off after the real shower is over.

Anyone know what "VOLUMIZING" means? Send me a note.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

I'll be unemployed this weekend also...

I got an email from the mortgage underwriter today (we close Thursday) asking me if I had a job in the time since I left the Dominican Republic and July 1, when I started working at the radio station.

These are the same people (underwriters) that gave anyone (and everyone) 125% of the value of their home for the last 10 years and have now begun to wonder what they were thinking when they did that.

Since my last day of vacation from Casa de Campo was May 31 and I began working by doing a baseball game on the radio on June 27, there was a total of 26 days I was “out of work.”

Bringing us to our Real Country Music lyric of the day: Whiskeys too rough, champagne costs too much, and vodka puts my mouth in gear…Aw, this little refrain should help me explain as a matter of fact I love beer.

Anyway, of course, I wasn’t out of work, I was on vacation. But they want to know what I did for the time in between and whether I had a job during the interim.

So, being cooperative like I am, I sent them a resume of my “employment gap.”

1. I drank 31.5 beers.
2. I went to the Outback Steakhouse four times.
3. I’ve been to Sonic 11 times. I just love the Cranberry Limeade.
4. I went for a walk one day and it rained.
5. I showered daily, for the most part.
6. I watched Godfather III. This was the occasion of the half beer, when I feel asleep during the fourth hour. Beer is not a good accompaniment for this movie. Try coffee instead.
7. I posted many inane musings to my blog. If someone out there could send me some cash, I could tell these idiots that I was a professional writer for the 26 days of destitution I endured.

Now, they’ll either leave me alone or I’ll be apologizing.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Carpe Diem...

After much thought and planning, I’ve decided to make the leap into the great unknown.

It’s the right time for it, after all, who knows when I will have this chance again?

(I don’t want to look back years from now and regret that I didn’t seize the opportunity when I had it.)

This brings us to the Real Country Music lyric of the day: I wanted more from life, than four kids and a wife and a job in a dark Kentucky mine.

So starting next week, I’m going get up and go to work. I’m going to finish up doing nothing on Monday (I still have a little more nothing to do to in order to make a clean break…I don’t want to just abandon my leisure) and then it’s off to the office!

I’m really looking forward to trading in my boxer shorts (well, I’ll still have them on) and tee shirt for a shirt and dress pants. Socks, too.

I hope I can be an inspiration to the rest of you to follow your obligations with tedious regularity.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

In my boxers with a beer for company...


I had no clue what this meant until Holli explained it to me. Fortunately, not on the toe. So I have six questions to answer via my friend Belinda at Belinda blogs sitting on her back porch amidst the cool of shade trees.

1. What were you doing 10 years ago? Alternating between suffering and regretting. Thanks for reminding me.
2. Five Items on Your To Do List Today: I plan to do nothing today (tomorrow or Sunday won’t work either…same plan) so I’ll use yesterday…1. Buy a car 2. Do a baseball game on the radio 3. Go to the park with the kids 4. Laugh out loud at least once 5. Think about exercising.
3. Snacks I enjoy: Fresh fruit and vegetables. Beef jerky. Sunflower seeds.
4. What would you do if you were a billionaire? Well, I haven’t run out of money yet and I’m not wanting for anything, so maybe I am already a billionaire. Without all the tax problems and paparazzi, of course.
5. Places you would live: Bolivar, TN. I figured out in the past five years that there is no paradise to go to. The place you need to be happy is between your ears. Everything else involves a U-Haul and that is a big pain. Don’t worry…I’m not saying I have this solved. I’m still insane, insecure and indelible (had to keep with the “I” theme…this is about me, after all).
6. Bloggers I am tagging.:I don’t know if there is a curse associated with not tagging anyone (like not sending on a chain letter – which I never have – draw your own conclusions as to the results of these decisions) but “all my rowdy friends are coming over tonight” (real country music lyric of the day) so I don’t have time to tag anyone…

Friday, July 4, 2008

Celebrating 20 years of Independence...

Some of my friends out there in blogland have started a one-word answer list of 35 questions…

I thought I would participate (and I tried to answer them all), but 35 questions are beyond my attention span and also violates my unwritten agreement that my blog posts wouldn’t cause more than four or five minutes of distraction, even if you read slow.

Also, one word wasn’t enough to answer the questions.

So I made up my own. I have 4 questions. I planned to have 10, but I ran out of time. I was watching a movie on Lifetime and I just couldn’t turn away. It’s the one about the guy who cheated on his wife. Last night it was about the woman who went crazy and re-decorated her kitchen.

Ok, here are my questions…

1. Where in the world is Carmen Sandiego? I never understood this show. For a while (when I was little), I thought San Diego must have been the 51st state and Carmen was the city. It turned out she was a person that traveled around. The game was to figure our where she was. I never found out.
2. Less filling or tastes great? I was too young to understand this at the time, but who would drink something just because it was less filling? I think this created a generation of people who drink beer for the wrong reasons. It’s not a weight-loss program with a buzz. It’s a beverage.
3. Briefs or boxers? I changed from briefs to boxers in 1988. It was Independence Day. Let freedom swing.
4. Should I stay or should I go? This is one of my favorite questions. The problem is, the Clash never answered it. They gave us some possibilities (trouble or double trouble), but never told us the answer. It's kind of disappointing.

And finally, our Real Country Music lyric of the day:
Well, love makes a man do some things he ain’t proud of
And in a weak moment I might
Walk your sissy dog
Hold your purse at the mall
But remember, I’m still a guy

Oh my eyebrows ain't plucked

There's a gun in my truck
Oh thank God, I'm still a guy

(Still wish I’d gotten a truck.)

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Maybe next time I'll get a truck...

I hate buying cars.

They cost a bunch on money and I never have any idea of what to buy. I usually buy used cars…mostly because I’m cheap and I don’t like that new car smell (mostly cheap though).

Then you have to call the insurance guy and give him his pound of flesh. Then the taxes are due. It just annoys me that I have to own one (or two).

I always plan to buy a truck. For about 15 years I have planned to buy one. But I haven’t yet test driven one. I always change my mind when the time comes.

I have a pretty good plan for buying them. Usually, I go over to the car lot and hope the guy selling cars is honest. Today I had to walk over to the car lot. This is a dead giveaway that I will be buying. This doesn’t help my negotiating power.

The first guy I talked to couldn’t even cough up a price until five hours later. I’m not kidding…he had to fax me around 2 pm for a car I test drove at 8:45 am. He told me how great the car I test drove was.

The second guy I talked to today said he had no idea what kind of mechanical condition the car I was looking at was in. He gave me a price and the keys to test drive it. He said he thought it was in pretty good shape.

We take timeout for the Real Country Music lyric of the day:
Y’all run along and have a little fun.
I'll see you when you get back.I’ll probably be up all night…
Still cleanin' this gun.

The first guy was from New York. The second guy was from right here for the past 60 or so years.

So, although I was leaning toward the brand of the first guy…I bought from the second guy. I guess I figure if it all goes horribly wrong (and the engine falls out or something), the second guy would help me while the first guy would just fax me an apology…

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Epiphany, y'all...

Country Music.

I’ve been listening to this for about a week now and I kind of like it.

I used to think country music was all about people whining about losing their trailer and I’m not entirely wrong, but at least (I think) the songwriters and singers are in on the joke.

This brings us to the Real Country Music lyric of the day: She’s a good bass fisher, a dynamite kisser, as country as a turnip green…

(I heard that last night. I realized that I started this feature because I thought country music was silly, but I've learned the country music guys know that's part of the appeal)

It’s just that when Johnny Cash sang about stealing a Cadillac, one piece at a time over twenty years, he wasn’t serious.

I’m not so sure about Mick Jagger’s lyrics. He probably really does think he can’t get no satisfaction and that I am interested in knowing about it. The rock and roll set seems to take themselves pretty seriously in both composing and performing.

They write vastly different things about the same subject. Tom T. Hall’s “Week in a County Jail” is much more entertaining that “Jailbreak” by AC/DC. Tom got out after seeing the judge and making proper restitution. Not so for Bon Scott and Angus Young.

It’s not that I’m turning my back on the music of my youth, it’s just that I’m looking to laugh and enjoy myself, not “Shout at the Devil.”

It just seems more adult. Sorry. And I don't think this makes me a redneck or a yokel.

I’d write more, but I have to see a man about a coon dog.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

I have friends who drink beer, but I haven't tried it yet...

I have a week to prepare for a doctor’s appointment.

I’ve been saying over and over again, “No, nothing hurts. I feel great!”

The reason I’m going to the doctor is that the insurance company needs me to go see a physician in order to determine how much I should pay (if they’ll cover me at all) to have my medical bills partially paid after a three-month fight and a hugely high deductable is satisfied.

They want to know what they might have to pay for so they can tell me that they won’t pay for it.

I need to look some stuff up on the internet…answers to give to questions in order to keep the doctor from probing further into my health history...or anywhere else.

*We stop for a moment for the Real Country Music Lyric of the Day: That’s how many wrecks I see there every day, caused by the girl wearing nothing but a smile and a towel in the picture on the billboard in the field near the big ole highway...

Back to my plan…in short, I’m going to lie.

I’ve never smoked, drank, ate shellfish, or been out in the sun for more than five minutes at a time.

I don’t eat anything but vegetables and fiber. I exercise regularly. I don’t crack my knuckles. I’ve never heard of beef jerky. I keep my cell phone at least 10 feet from my head at all times.

The reason I don’t feel bad about lying is that I don’t believe I should have to give him all the answers. What did he go to medical school for? So I could tell him what the problem is? Who’s the doctor?

If that fancy medical license on the wall is worth the paper it is written on, he needs to prove it.

I just hope he doesn’t look too hard.

*actual lyrics heard by me on the radio station of my employment...