Sunday, May 31, 2009

18 years


Eighteen years ago tonight, I graduated from high school. I only remembered this because I have a weird knack for remembering certain dates and graduation is one of those stuck in my head.

The milestone is that I have now been out of my parents house longer than I was in it.

Even though I already had a college, a scholarship, and a major before I even walked across the platform to get my diploma, I still had no idea what I really wanted to do.

Somehow - by fate or karma or whatever - I ended up right here: about 40 miles away from where I grew up - in a career that has nothing to do with my degree - and perfectly satisfied with that.

I have a quote on my Facebook that perfectly sums up my life in those last eighteen years : "Everything good that happened to me happened by accident. I was not filled with ambition nor fired by a drive toward a clear-cut goal. I never knew exactly where I was going." - Jack Benny

Right before I came in here to type this up, I was sitting in my daughter's room reading a Disney book with her. That is all that really matters.

I ended up in the right place.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Catching Up

It was nice to have a little time off from RISC boxes and the wonderful, crazy world of UNIX. Yet, it does grow on you and you do start to miss that blue and white screen - which is much better than the green and black screen I stared at for the last 6 years.
My time off was centered around my sister-in-law's wedding. I took pictures with my phone but resisted the urge to twitpic them. I took a twitter vacation vow and I stuck to it!!


After the wedding and the clean up, we spent the rest of the weekend in a recovery coma. We were all whipped from all of the planning and everyone coming to town plus the kids being out of school. It was a pile on that happened all at once. In fact, the kids were off - at home - through Tuesday. I had to take that day off to be on kid patrol.

We did catch up on some movies. Family Video came to town (Blockbuster just closed - I'm not sure why I am surprise at that, but I am. When Blockbuster opened in my home town, it was a big deal. Now, they are dinosaurs). Family Video is really cheaper than Redbox since you get 5 nights for next to nothing and Family Video is easier to deal with than the Redbox robot which hardly ever works.

I watch some weird stuff, so here are the short reviews:
  • "Smart People" - I like Dennis Quaid and just about everyone in this one. It was a bit draggy at times but had some laughs. Worth the $1 rental.
  • "Be Kind Rewind" - Same as above - a little draggy at times but funny. Worth the $1.
  • "King of California" - this is a Michael Douglas movie about a father returning home from a mental institution who is now obsessed with finding old Spanish gold. It was better than I expected - worth the $1. The ending was weird.

Finally, I got to rent "Once". My wife fell asleep 10 minutes in, but I thought it was phenomenal. It's just the kind of movie I like. The music was great. The story was great. In some weird way it reminded me of "Lost in Translation". Well, I give it multiple thumbs up. Quite good.


Finally, I discovered "Tacos at Midnight" Doritos. When I opened the bag, I got a whiff of taco sauce smell that took me instantly back to 1991 behind the counter at Taco Bell. Of course, in reality, it smelled like taco sauce and dirty mop water there, but I digress. Then, you bite into the chip, expecting something spicy and get a totally unexpected cheap taco taste. Why I think they are good is beyond me - they really taste like taco sauce powder from an Old El Paso kit poured all over a nacho chip. It's an odd taste - like puffcorn. It's nasty, but good. And, who wouldn't want a product with a tag line like that?



Monday, May 25, 2009

Thursday, May 21, 2009

What a week! Time for a staycation!


After a whirlwind trip to Atlanta this week and a ton of other stuff to do, I am finally off (off work - I am off mentally all of the time). I don't go back to work until Wednesday!! (Yeah!)

Just like Brent from Corner Gas, I am taking a staycation this time. It's my first extended time off in over a year. It's also my sister-in-law's wedding Saturday (Congratulations Allison and Justin!!) and my 13th wedding anniversary on Monday (Time for our annual special trip to the Krystal). Lots of excitement packed into one stretch.

It is also a twitter-blog-facebook-email vacation. Have a great Memorial Day holiday!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Seen in Atlanta

Yep - on I-285. I had to slow down and get this one. A little Gorilla Glue would improve his gas mileage by at least a mile per gallon. Maybe he is just looking forward to when the whole thing just rips off in traffic and flies into somebody's windshield.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Field Day

More rain moving in for our Saturday - not that I wanted to do any yard work today anyway. I still have a tree I need to cut down in the back that is leaning over since the storms we had almost a month ago but it's been too wet to safely get it down ever since. I love living in the swamp.
Speaking of rain, the kids had one half of field day yesterday before all of the rain moved in and runied that also. Sara is second from the back assisting on the tug of war.
Sara ended up second from the back again here. Notice how determined the rest of them look and she is just going with the flow. Future CEO right there.
This is right before the huge loss against the second graders. I think they were all on steroids.
Sara is at the far end and came in second in the class in the softball throw!
Lindsay was here too but it started raining before I could get pictures of her (she was at lunch most of the time I was there).
So, the storms came and field day ended. Nothing was planned but watching movies and sitting around. I did what any good parent would do - I checked them both out of school and brought them home so they could watch movies and sit around!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

New browser. Same old Microsoft.

Check out the new "Web Slice" feature of Internet Explorer 8 (that we are now being forced to install thanks to Microsoft Update).




Makes me think of this fun moment:



Of course, I can't laugh. I am involved in a project at work in which I must carry around a laptop that is A) Windows 98 and B) has a parallel port. I needed that laptop today when the network hosed up and all I had was a console cable and no serial port on my nice new laptop. Funny how technology has that way of biting you in the rear.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Sunday...

Quite a switch from our normal Sunday as we head to see my parents this morning first thing and will be back home this afternoon/evening. As always, I hope this visit home won't leave me searching the HMO directory under the heading THERAPIST - but each visit sends me closer and closer lately.

To take my mind off of that, I share a couple of my favorite Cheetos commercials. They are a little old but good:



Friday, May 8, 2009

Where would I put it all?

I would take the survey but there isn't enough cabinet / closet / corner space in my entire house to hold $1000 worth of Cream of Wheat.


Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Mid-week

First, a mention of Dom DeLuise. I guess I remember him mostly from being in the Muppet Movie and then the Cannonball Run movies. He was really popular in the late '70's and early '80's. In more recent years, he still had 'it' - whatever it was that makes someone genuinely funny. Him and Robin Williams are two of the most high-energy comics you could watch. He always came across as a good guy, so here's to him. Salute!



Either this week hasn't been as crazy-busy at work or I've just gotten used to the new pace of life. In my spare time, I've been able to pack up some of the stuff that I am moving into my real office, plus I've gotten some much needed spring cleaning out of the way. I finally got a secure office at our closest building (around 40 miles or so away), so I can store equipment there and not in my garage/attic/bedroom. This is good because some of that stuff is pretty expensive and I was just waiting for a dog/kid/clumsiness accident to happen with some of that stuff sitting around here. I have to go back Friday and move some more of it in.



I've also finally gotten comfortable enough in my job (3 months here at the new company this week!) that I finally cleaned up the old company car (the Contour of Fun) and have it all shined up and ready for some of my upcoming road trips.

In spring cleaning news, I caught up on all of the yard work last night and today I took a TON of stuff to the thrift store. They got a variety of stuff, including two shredders, two CB's, 3 antennas, a bunch of clothes, an old Palm Pilot, CD's, movies, office supplies, a desk lamp.



I also finally threw out all of the CD cases and DVD cases that were wasting space in the attic. I moved all of those into organizers two years ago and finally chucked all of that junk. All of those plastic cases just take up space. Al Gore would have cried watching me throw 3 garbage bags of plastic cases into the dumpster.

It is not supposed to rain (thank goodness). Maybe the Tylenol will kick in and I can get over the "I overdid it" feeling that has settled into my muscles and limbs.

That's it. The buttons are from our 1989 trip to Canada.

All for now.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Looking back...

What a busy week this is turning out to be. I won the battle with Mother Nature by getting all of my yardwork done this evening. This is the only day forecast for no rain this week. We've had about 9 inches of rain in the last week and there is more rolling in tonight - I'm about fed up.

I've spent some time thinking back about "the old days". I'm not sure what surprises me more - the fact that it's been 20 years since I went to Toronto with the Band of Gold; the fact that I saved the little program they handed out that Saturday morning for 20 years; or the fact that there are parts of that trip I can remember with such incredible detail but I still have to write notes to myself to get things done every day. Maybe our heads just fill up with stuff as we get older and we don't have room to cram it all in?

I would consider the Toronto trip a major milestone of high school and one of my all-time favorite trips overall (and I travel A LOT - A WHOLE LOT!!). Lots of good memories. We ended up spending the night at Niagara Falls on the way home. I wish my camera had not died on the 2nd day of that trip!! The pics that did come out were not that good - lousy Kodak Disc cameras!!