Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Jimmy Fallon - Idiot Boyfriend

This is an awesome video and I hadn't seen it in a few years. I hope you enjoy.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Christmas and James Brown Tribute.

Hello all I hope you had a good Christmas. I sure did. It was great getting down to visit my Aunt Wanda and Uncle Don. We had a great couple of meals and a nice time. Even if Aunt Wanda decided to get another cold for the holidays. I told her colds are not a good present anytime of the year so their is no reason to run out and grab a second one in two months time. Santa doesn't even give colds to naughty kids! I mean hello!

Anyway some of you may have heard that James Brown passed away on Christmas day. I decided to do a little tribute to him. So I watched like 60 YouTube clips to bring you the top 6 clips I found. I hope you enjoy. I sacrificed for the greater good once again.

Eddie Murphy makes with the James Brown Funny

This video is from Eddie Murphy's Delirious stand up show. Just a fair warning this is full of the words moms don't like.

Papa's gotta brand new bag!

THis is my favorite of the videos I shared. I guess a big thank you goes out to VH1 classic.


This was entertaining. I like the end where he shows the dance moves he invented. You can debate if he actually invented them as far as I am concerned he invented a lot of things and his impact on music was huge.

James Brown - live Monterey '79 - Get up offa that thing

And another tribute video

James Brown - It's a Man's World

Another video tribute.

JAMES BROWN on Shindig

As you may have heard James Brown passed away yesterday. So I am just going to post a few of his performances for your enjoyment. Rest in peace man.

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Happy Holidays!

Merry Christmas!
I hope you all have a great holiday. I will, I am heading to Salem to spend the Holiday with my Aunt and Uncle. It will be a good time. Hope you all spend quality time with your family and that you get a few gifts that you want and a few gifts that you need.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Math schmath!

Hey all!
Some of you may know that I have become increasingly frustrated with the Art Institute Online and some of you may not know. For those that know this is rant time, for those that don't get a cup of coffee and pull up a chair.

I was looking to get back into school and my main focus was to use my abilities and my passion to make something into a career. Early on I thought about teaching but decided against because I was afraid I would burn out. There is a lot of crap teachers see and try to fix that can never be fixed and I wasn't sure I wanted to face that. After all I am the guy who draws pictures of cartoon bunnies in his spare time. I am a dreamer and I hate seeing reality too often. I have had enough reality the last couple of years of scraping by and making my dad's "Bank of Dad" shirt more realistic then cleverly ironic. I started looking around and I thought a journalist would be cool and I still think it would be if I was one of those people that could do reviews or entertainment opinion columns. I once again realized there was way too much reality in that world to suit my tastes. I started thinking what do I like to do. I like photography and I love making things on the computer. So I started checking out art schools. I read about several cool looking schools that required a portfolio and several essays on why the world is the way it is or what color is the best to wear after Labor Day since we all know white is out.... I really wasn't interested in driving to Beaverton to hang out with the unwashed hippies that reeked of a horrible mixture of Patchouli and body odor. The same hippies that spend their time drawing "amazing" pictures of trees and write poems about trees and why weed is your friend. Ok so maybe I am in the wrong city to think these raggety looking hippy wannabe granola kids are annoying and maybe I am a little judgemental of something I really never experienced but whatever this is my story. AND YOU WILL LISTEN TO EVERY WORD I HAVE TO SAY! (thank you Adam Sandler) Back to the story.

So here I am wanting to go back to school but afraid photography will lead to me being a sears photographer and thinking writing will lead me to a pissed off typesetter at the local newspaper and when I mean local I mean the community newspaper. I decided I would go back to the computer for my answer and low and behold I found Art Institue Online. Which boasted some amazing majors which included Media Arts and Animation. I was in it to win it, with dreams of working on the next Toy Story. They rushed me right through the enrollment process and before they even had all my transcripts I was in my first class.

The first class was pointless but I enjoyed the interaction with other students and the fact that I could log in at 7 PM or 2 AM and it didn't really matter. I did very well and I recieved a very high 'A'. The second clas began about the same time they told me my transcripts were not completely acceptable and that I would have to retake Math courses, specifically MTH 099 Basic Mathematics and MTH 100 Intermediate Algebra. What I had taken was Mat 154 College Algebra and MAT 160 Trigonometry. Apparently it is that damn "A" and "H"'s fault that my credits weren't taken and that is about the best guess I have. I tried to find out why they weren't accepted via email and the phone, but I recieved no response. Finally last week I recieved a call that I had to take the Accuplacer Test or else. So I called back and I was told that "the credits must not have matched up and it's too late to do a credit challenge". They don't match up? Math is Math! 1+1=2 Is that different if you got to art school? Does 1+1=Picasso? Then the other half of that statement.... "it's too late to do a credit challenge". Forget that I emailed and called about this and heard nothing back. Lets focus on something being too late when I was not even aware it existed until it was mentioned during my little phone call that I had to make three times (not counting the prior unreturned messages) to get a hold of someone. How is it too late? I am not enrolled in the classes and you have had my transcripts for 2 months! Why do I have to take these stupid classes anyway? What art talent will I improve by learning how to divide fractions and to solve for 'x'? If they are trying to go more legit with their degrees then the next question is what makes makes me have to take them next semester? In every school I have ever attended they allow you to choose your courses and even though courses are required to complete the major and some are prerequisites for other required classes all they do is suggest you take them. You could buck the whole system and take every class with the word "SEX" in the title and as long as they get their money they will let you. Even against their advisors advice YOU still pick YOUR schedule. The other problem with the "more legit degree" excuse is the fact that those same classes worked great for my first major and have worked for every other school with required math courses I have asked that did not want higher courses then the ones I took. In fact, I often get told that I more then qualify the math requirements but at AIO I am told I will be force placed into the basic math class unless I can take some test that requires me to ask a total stranger to jump through several hoops. I have asked several times if there is a way to sign up with a proctor service. I would pay for it I don't even care about the money as long as it could be on a Wednesday. My other problem is that this involves the other person (or Proctor) to have email access and internet access. Yet it can not be done at my home or at the proctor's home. I have had two people say they would but they don't know how to work around the internet connection issue.

About the test they want me to take. I have to find a non-relative that can be my communicator to the testing company. They have to send in their information and they will get the test or the test link sent to them via email. They have to be present while I take the test and then they have to submit the test and communicate with the testing company on my behalf and I have to get all this set up and complete by Wednesday.

So I am back at square one. With no reason that my math courses are not acceptable and the fear of having to take math again. Which puts me into a corner and I tend to get very feisty when I am stuck in a corner. I have an overwhelming urge to bag it all but I worked hard to get the money situation straightened out and I really want to be in school. I decided the other day that I need to head to the physical campus in downtown Portland and talk to them about switching to them next year. If I get pushed into MTH 099 and MTH 100 I will be talking to them after the first of the year about getting in as soon as possible. At this point even if I do miraculously avoid the gallows, known as remedial math courses, I will be talking to someone at AI at Portland about starting with them next fall. I decided to share a few warm happy thoughts with the Online chuckleheads about what this stupid situation has done to my outlook on AIO and I wrote the email below. It is nowehere near what I would like to say but it will have to do.

I am not understanding why these math classes are so imperative. I have 8 credits of math already that are at a higher level then the ones you are forcing me to take. I am having a hard time seeing how these classes will help me in my chosen career. I also have no clue why I have to get this all done now. Why is it so important that I get into the math now. Is it a prerequisite for something? If so then what. I am extremely irritated that my credits weren't accepted and I am even more irritated that this test relies on me to find a proctor and can't be done at the Art Institute in my city. I am at a point that if I get forced placed into these math classes, that I feel I shouldn't have to take, I will be looking for a new school to attend next year.
As far as the math goes why was I rushed into enrolling if this was such an issue? I have talked several times with Andi Spano about this accuplacer test and the fact that my math classes should count for something. She has never given me a reason that my credits weren't accepted. In fact until the other day I had no idea that I could have challenged the credits to try and get them accepted. I have had a hard time getting in touch with people because you are based in Pennsylvania and I am at work for most of the time you are open and I am off after you close. I don't get replies to my emails and usually they are not helpful or require me to submit more information so I can wait 24 hours longer for help. I signed up for the convenience factor and I have not experienced that.
There is a slim chance that I will be able to get this pointless test done by Wednesday. I am going to try to set it up but as of yet I am unable to mesh times with anybody who has agreed to be my proctor. I also have another question about the test is it emailed to the proctor or can it be faxed? The proctor I do have does not have email access which is another reason this has been hard to set up.
Thank you for your time,
Michael Williams
Student ID: *****
Phone: (503) ***-****
URL: Http://

Sunday, December 17, 2006

A Book Review

Hey all I was recently looking at a book club and it allowed you to put in your two cents on a book and I decided to submit my thoughts on one of the books for sale. Here is what I posted:

Reviewer: MICHAEL W.
Talk about Sucktastic!

I very rarely abandon a book completely but this book was so annoyingly uninteresting that I had to. In fact I sold the book back to a used book store just to get it out of my sight! Everytime I think about that book I get irritated. It is so slow and uninteresting it was unbelievable. I would like to use this book to smack the author a couple of times in the head! I read the reviews here and maybe I should have read past the 200 pages but any book that takes longer then 200 pages to get going is dumb. And the writing style seemed witty at first but as it droned on I felt like I was being forced to read some historical textbook on the various stages of a rock becoming sand. Holy hell this book sucks! It makes me feel like retching to think that someone may read this book and waste precious moments of their life. Can I tell you anymore about how bad this book is? I mean really really bad. I wouldn't even use this book as a paperweight. My nephew who is 2 tells better stories. An illiterate chipmunk could produce a more enthralling novel!

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Ode to the Apartment Laundry

Ode to the Apartment Laundry

Dearest Laundry Abandoner,
I was dismayed to find a load of stray clothes in the dryer.
It had sat there for at least 30 minutes as I washed my clothes
And with wet garments in hand I found the dryer full.
I was dismayed, upset even
However I had let my laundry sit for 30 minutes in the past as well
I decided to see this as a minor setback, a thing to be overcome.
I made due with one dryer
Absolutely sure that the laundry would be claimed
I set my timer for 30 minutes, half a dryer cycle
Thinking an hour is enough time to remember your wares...
When the half hour passed
I walked down in the dreary rain to find your clothes still retaining the dryer
My mind flashed devilish ideas like depositing your clothes on top of the dryer
But I didn't want to disturb them,
After all it is an easy mistake to make
Maybe amidst getting kids to bed you had temporarily forgotten
I was confident given a half hour longer you would correct this egregious error.
I shouldn't have been so generous.
I loaded my one dryer with my second load of clothes
Knowing that another load was still waiting
And a dryer was sitting filled but not used,
I retired to the Batcave.
An hour went by and I descended from my hovel
Into the dreary rain and down to our humble laundering facility,
Your things still clogged one of the dryers,
Like the edge of spittle on an old man's mouth.
It enraged me
I barely stopped myself from dashing your purloined cloth to the ground
And proceeding to stomp my muddy wet shoes into the fabric.
Instead I loaded my third load into the one remaining dryer
I went back to my perch and in an hours time was called back down to tend my laundry.
Only to find your vile threads festering in the dryer
Causing it to putresce and disintegrate before my eyes.
I finished hanging my clothes and I ascended back to my lair,
Still miffed by your evil inconsiderate ways.
I found myself sitting in front of a seldom used sticky note pad
I began to write all my wishes for your imminent demise upon it
When it occurred to me what I could do to strike a blow against this injustice
So I carefully crafted a note and snuck it back down.
I brazenly stuck the note to the front of the dryer
And it read:

Dear Inconceivably Inconsiderate Neighbor,
I am sorry to inform you of this but the dryer caught on fire while your clothes sat for hours. I was desperate to put the fire out and save the clothing you hold dear enough to have forgotten. So I did the only thing I could do I unzipped my pants and urinated on them. I am sure you will be very glad to know of the courageous and unflinching act I took on your behalf. I need not be thanked personally as I know your many prayers of thanks will include your anonymous benefactor. Anytime you feel like occupying a dryer for hours on end in the future just let me know and I will keep a very close watch on them. Always here for you.
Yours truly,
Urine Man

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Crazed Comic Strip Pt 1

This comic was inspired by my blog entry "News" Shows Suck & the Weather Guy = Devil. I hope you like it. I am already working on the second comic.

Friday, December 01, 2006

The Simpsons Movie Trailer

Hey all,
I was talking to my dad when he mentioned that this trailer upset people a lot. Apparently it's not ok to harm animated bunnies. I found this trailer to be a lot better once I discovered that some people had objected to it. Yeah I know I like things just because other people don't. Just for making that observation expect a Britney Spears CD in your stocking this year.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

"News" Shows Suck & the Weather Guy = Devil

Well we have had an eventful couple of days here in Portland. If you watched the news up here you would know that the second ice age was narrowly averted Monday and Tuesday. It was going to SNOW in Portland! Batten down the hatches! All hands on deck! And any other silly cliche you can think of when disaster is stalking your every move. I was really afraid that when I awoke I would find everything had been frozen and the technology had become obsolete. The cars frozen in their tracks and the grocery store doors sealed shut from the snow. I had expected a world full of woolly mamoths, saber tooth tigers and sloths. I had expected icy roads, snow that I would have to shovel and salt in my pockets. I had spent the better part of the night making a spear to get ready for the inevitable mammoth hunt. I no longer have any furniture left because I broke it apart to make spears, skis and snowshoes. If any one wants a sled I have the most awesome sled made out of my oven! The apartment manager did not seem happy about the fire I started in her rose bushes. She also said I was being indecent when I insisted on doing my half naked dance to the moon god. She doesn't understand that my half naked moon god dance was the only thing that saved us from the weather guys predictions. I mean I bought the world another few years and what do I get in return? An eviction notice! (By the way does anyone have a couch I can crash on?) I still regret the spears I made and the stove... yeah I have no clue how I was planning on cooking this winter. I wrote to the weather guy to ask if he could give me credit on the evening news but he requested that I remove him from my mailing list. I thought that was a little on the rude side. I had only emailed him a few thousand times this month about my indispensible help preventing Portland's flooding. It had been earlier in the year when we had experienced crazy nonstop rainfall in Portland. I had leaned against a building and it didn't get washed away. The weather guy said I was making fun of him and that I should stop emailing him. I said that he needed to recognize that because I prevented the building from washing away that I had in effect created the anchor that Portland needed during the time of the "almost" flood and without me we might have all ended up in Albuquerque. No one wants to end up in Albuquerque! Not even people in Albuquerque! I had bought a boat so I could rescue stranded motorists and people sitting on their roofs but did I get any recognition? NO! No I did not. In fact all I got was my boat reposessed! Guess who is not getting saved next year! The repo man, I won't even consider it! Another person I am not saving, the weather guy! Oh and don't forget the boat salesman! Jerks! I get no respect!

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Happy Thanksgiving and the latest site news

Well some of you may have noticed the new look of the main page - I am betting that most of you did not..... If you are like me you bookmarka page and it is the same page all the time. So try out the link. I am in the midst of a redesign of the site. I was tired of a few things and it seemed very necessary to recraft the site. It is by no means done but I am trying not to hang an "Under Costruction" label on the site and shut it down until 2020 until I manage to keep myself on task long enough to work all the details out. In the meantime I am still open for business but I will be adding things and changing order around almost every night. As always, I welcome any feedback. Poke around a little and let me know what you find, whether it is good, bad or indifferent.

In related news, I am completely thrilled with my overwhelming feedback on my contest. It is going to be really tough to pick the winners. Those out there that have contributed know who you are! I am a little disappointed you did not post on the blog entry like I asked but I am willing to forgive that. To all others that wish to get the largest prize I have come up with so far remember that the deadline for submissions is November 30th!!! It is a little more then a week away! Remember to craft your entry after gorging yourself on turkey or for those that skip meat..... tofurkey. I hear nothing beats writing on a full stomach, add a lot of alcohol and by all that is holy you will probably be the winner. Unless everyone takes my advice then you might need to hire Stewey, the rabbit to eliminate the competition. Go here to remind yourself of the contest rules: The Prove It Contest!

Lest I forget have a good holiday. Enjoy a day of family and friends and don't say no to dessert...... Your tummy can find room for dessert.

Friday, November 17, 2006


Hey this Video is pretty cool! Read more about it here:

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

The Prove It Contest

I am looking for my number one fan. All of you claim to read this blog when I ask you and I get anoccasional email from an occasional person. Unfortunately I blog for attention and for a way to get my stupid stories out there. This contest is geared to reward people that read the blog. All I want is your opinion of a past entry. It can be this blog or the older blog "The Ramble Rouser". The better the review the better the prize. This time there can only be one winner so do your best. Try to make me laugh, get me to curse your very existence, get me to cry or get me to throw in the blogging towel. Either way do your best critique of one of my blogs and you might be the individual of the hour. Pick your favorite or your least favorite. All Submissions must be submitted no later then November 30th. All submissions must also be posted on this blog entry and have the blog title too reference the blog too which you refer. All blog entries made for the soul purpose of announcing contests or new stores are not really included unless you concoct one heck of a critique. The blogs containing other people's videos are out because they aren't really mine I just shared things I thought were clever. All entries must have someway for me to know who you are like a name and an email address. If you are afraid of spam then you haven't lived on the net long.... but you can always set up an online net email and use that for this contest but remember to check it after you submit.

Reasons for all submissions to be here. I won't have to repost the entry the contests are also thought up for pure entertainment value to be used by this blog. Please do your part and you could win a nifty Holiday prize pack. Which may include a shirt, a mug, a notebook, a signed picture of me or a can of chili. It may also include dirty laundry but not very likely. So do your best work and you could be a winner. At this website you can win more then once a year so all those that entered in the past are more then welcome to win again.

Once again the prize depends on how good your winning response is. I am not buying the prize until I pick a winner. So far all I know is no matter what the prize pack i it will include a sticker. I bought several for the last contest and I have extra. Thanks for the participation..... yeah.

MY First Moving Picture Piece

SO you are sitting there wondering what should I do tonight. Mike hasn't updated in a few days and I have nothing to laugh about. Well have no fear my Flash debut has been made head on over to for the first look at a breathtaking epic. Forget Spielberg, Lucas and that Lord of the Rings guy Ihave made my first foray into a story told in pictures and that story is


GO there now and see it! It's an order!

Thursday, November 09, 2006

One Chick beats a Gaggle of Girls

Hello all in legoland! How are you faring? I am doing pretty well except the textbook I need was snatched up before I could get to Barnes and Noble. The galling thing is that it's sitting on the hold shelf. If I had remembered the hold option that bloody book would be mine! It seems like cheating to hold it though, I would have found it easier to swallow if the person had come in and bought the dang book before I got there. Somehow that seems more civilized to me. So tomorrow I plan to call local bookstores and find a copy that I can put a "hold" on. In my state of total dejection I decided to head over to Chili's to have some food. I had a craving for their boneless buffalo wings and was about to make a buffalo wing combo with Chili's 3 appetizers for 9.99 thing. I can see it now boneless buffalo wings, bonelss shanghai wings and regular buffalo wings I was going to try them all and then probably vomit on my shoes after I left. Unfortunately that promo ended so I had the fajitas.... or did I?

According to this reciept I had 1 chick for $12.99! I bet you didn't know Chili's was in the "Escort" services! Booyah! Totally busted those dirty birdies! (Click the reciept to make it bigger.)

Anyway in other Chili's related news. As I was having my fajitas/chick I had a gaggle of young teeny bopper girls sit behind me. Their chosen topic of discussion.... Periods. Yeah, I mean menstruation. I am not talking about a way to show the sentence is at an end. So I ate my fajitas/chick and tried to focus all my energy into the TV that was showing ESPN. I pretended that I really was interested in what Dallas thinks about T.O. (Terrell Owens) dropping 6 passes this season. I read those closed caption notes like they were going to save me from instant death. Ok to be fair I know this event must be major and something that can be quite shocking and in certain situations downright embarrassing. I also know that it is part of being female. I also want to point out that the mom there was very cool and told stories right along with the girls which is how I think a conversation about natural and normal events should feel and be like. That p.c. stuff being said do you have to discuss it loudly at a public restaurant. I mean "HELLO! I'm eating here!"

Other then that it was a good night.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Give me NCIS or give me death!

It seemed like such a good idea this morning. I could see myself eating a great pasta dinner while I watched NCIS and drank half a bottle of wine. It seemed almost like a Hallmark moment really. My dinner was to be shared with people I cared a lot about: Ducky, Abby, McGee, Gibbs, and Ziva. Especially Abby and Ziva. I even planned ahead. You see it was my first week on the job officially and Tuesday was my day off on the new schedule. I woke up and caught up with Bob Barker and his beauties. I even promised to have my pets spayed or neutered. I checked my homework to see if the prof had graded the portfolio I had turned in. I watched the vhs tape I had made the night before when I had focused on my homework and not the TV. Then I ran out of the house and headed to Barnes and Noble so that when night came I wouldn't feel antsy. You see I usually feel antsy on my days off because I forget getting out is the key for me to stay sane. I try to do things new but because I am still struggling with the concept of a budget my funding was totally non-existant and that left me to focus on free and nearby excursions. So B&N it was. The rain had finally stopped after a week of nonstop insanity and it seemed like a now or never situation. I mention the rain only because it was abnormal rain. It has been raining hard since last week and normally when it rains here it kind of just drizzles. It was raining so hard that it flooded in places. If you heard the news up here you would think that we were experiencing Katrina level floodwaters.... the news get a little overzealous at times. And by "at times" I mean all the time. Anyway I spent a few hours reading books and not buying them at B&N and then I headed home. I started cooking dinner. I bought some Italian sausage to add some interest to my dish and I like those sausages to simmer in wine for a few hours which explains why I only polished off half a bottle since the other half was in use. It was time for NCIS and I had dished up a plate of goodness. I went to flip on the tube and I was met with some horribly dressed people talking about voting..... VOTING!!! What is the thing about watching the election numbers? I have been told by people that watching golf is boring but I bet half of those people that find golf boring watched the voting tallies. Here is the thing, the vote will be the same tomorrow and why waste time until the vote is completely tallied? I mean seriously? Besides aren't the elections news and don't they have a set time for news? You know during the news shows. I mean isn't prime time the time when TV puts on shows for entertainment value alone? You know lots of murder, scantily clad women but no bad words? It's not like people didn't know there was an election... with all the backstabbing and rampant slandering ads all over the place who could not know? So since it was preplanned it isn't like this was breaking news or anything. You know what else? Every decision the voters made will be in the news tomorrow. So don't interrupt NCIS!!!! Especially when you hyped the show all day! Yeah that's right, all day long I saw ads about the new episode of NCIS. I was looking forward to it and instead of a surly Gibbs I found some jerks talking about the election. Where the heck is Abby? Where is Ziva? And more importantly where is the justice in this world? I mean what kind of priorities are we raising our kids with when you cancel TV shows for political drivel? Seriously? Do you think that any person that has enough money to successfully run for an office can actually relate to any of you on any real level? If so send that person to my house I want to meet them. Until then put NCIS back on!

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Gone Daddy Gone

You might recognize the song... you might not. Either way Gnarls Barkley does a great video and version of the song.

And yes I am being lazy and posting a video instead of writing..... you will get over it. I am working on a flash movie I am slightly distracted.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006


I know that Halloween was yesterday but I just found this video today. It is an Indian version of Thriller. It is very amusing I just had to share!

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

A Halloween Poem

"The Knock"

It was Halloween night and I was bored
There was nothing to do, no movies of gore

I sat there reclined in my trusty blue chair
As my eyes took on a vacant glare

Flipping the channels, with my old gnarled remote
Huddled down in my old house coat

No trickers and no treaters came by my door
Not even with half of all the candy at the damn store!

When out on the porch came a big racket
As if someone wanted in, knocked hard, enough to crack it

I rushed to the door to peep through the hole
I saw a man who stood there with a name badge: Hi my name is Joel

I threw open my door and shook his hand
“Damn glad to meet you my name is Stan!”

He seemed quite shocked, a might taken back
With a puzzled expression he asked “Do you know Jack?”

“I have never met him! But I am sure he is great!
Are you hungry? Or have you just ate?”

I offered him some candy, all he could take
He said “Sorry, I don’t know you. But everything’s jake!

I am ok, I just have to go
I got all mixed up and knocked on the wrong doe!”

So I slammed the door, shut hard in his face
Figured next time that door rang I would come out with mace!

-Mike Williams 10/31/06

Sunday, October 29, 2006

I like school. School is cool.

I have been doing a lot of writing for my online course and that is why I have been a bit MIA lately. It is hard to write a lot when you are already using that same source of inspiration earlier in the day. I have found all the assignments easy to do but some have been hard to get started on. The main focus of the course is techniques to help you succeed in an online learning environment and some things they have you do is take notes on the reading and post them, then we critique other peoples stuff. The last part is the hardest to do I have no idea how to critique study notes people make for their personal study habits. So I tend to find one thing I really like. For example I might say: "The bullet points help make these notes easy to follow and understand." Hmmm... yeah. So that is what I mean by using the same creative pool to produce the homework assignments and interaction as well as these blog entries. I take something small and try to blow it up into something worthy of putting hands to keyboard over... How am I doing so far? Of course the blog gets cheated because it is secondary to the education I am going deeper into debt for. I spend a good portion of my free time working on my assignments and responses to the school work even though I could probably put half the effort into it and still come up with a decent result. However I am trying to live by my new ways of thinking, outlined in New Thinking and the 1st October contest and I figure the best way to do that is by embracing each task and trying to make a worthwhile and honest effort of the end result. The bonus is that I have been able to use some of my blog entries in the career portfolio that is the central theme of this course. I have had some very favorable responses to what I have been bringing to the table. I have been working very hard at providing everyone with positive feedback even when it is harder to find. All of the people have something to bring to the table but some do not have the communication skills to do so very easily. That is what has been my biggest hang up and my focus has been on looking through the poor grammar, sentence structure and bad spelling and find their message and the figure out what speaks to me and talk about that. It is a good exercise to improve my people skills. That is how I am choosing to view it.

Other then that we have finally moved out of the evil windowless training room at work. We are at our desks and spending the days taking practice calls. I finally feel like we are learning how to do our jobs. The classroom environment seemed to be lacking the hands on aspect and I think that watching us on the practice calls was a wake up call to our supervisor. We have spent time on how to navigate the systems while everyone follows along in their own similar fake policy. November 6th is the day we officially start taking live calls so I think this week will be pretty intense. The focus will be on getting us ready to take real calls and I don't think they fell that we are ready. It is funny to see everyone stress out. I don't feel it. I am not worried about the calls I will focus on providing good and pleasant service and figure out how to get the speed down later. In other work news I worked a day at the tux shop. I am going to let them know to keep me in mind in the future. It would be nice to pick up some hours when that business picks up. I think I will be able to really help out during prom season, which is apparently an extremely busy time of year.

Don't forget about the contest going on at the New Thinking and the 1st October contest entry! Go there now!

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

More Florida Stew Pictures

I was talking to Stew after I ratted him out last night.... which he seems very upset about. He was telling me that he did a lot while he was in Florida and he insisted I include a few more pictures. The first one he wanted me to share was of the upcoming movie Miami Vice II: Just Stew. He says it will be a story of one rabbit on the hard road to redemption and the cops that give him carrots. Here is the promotional picture:

The next item is his involvement in the Miami-FIU brawl during their recent football game. He wanted me to share the various pictures. I do not believe he was going to school or playing football so what he was doing fighting is still unclear. My guess is he likes violence since he is a crazy rabbit and all.

He did want to make sure you all new it wasn't all about movies, brawling and putting a hit out on some bunnies. He also made time for the ladies!

Monday, October 23, 2006

The Useless Fish and The Traveling Rabbit

I ask my fish George to do one thing for me! Just one thing! Does he do it? Well do you see any entries in here? Neither do I! I said "Hey George, can you fill in at the blog while I get settled in the new job, the new school and while I have visitors?" George says "Not a problem man." So here I am, nearly 2 weeks later and I have no entries in here at all! I guess that is what you get for asking a fish to do anything! I would have asked Stew (the rabbit) but he was unavailable. Actually this is a funny story. You see a few weeks ago I get a call from Stew and he says "Hey Mikey I am going to Florida to pay a visit to some stinkin' rabbits that owe me some carrots. Think you could drive me?" I tell him all the things I have going on and he says "Well you know I would make it worth your while!" I respond "I know you would but us humans can't pay rent with carrots." He says "Well can you at least keep the old people happy while I am gone? I would leave a note but I have terrible penmanship!" I say well "Can it wait? I know they will be going out of town for a while during the holidays and I know they would miss you if you go MIA." He says "C'mon Mikey who wants bad news during the holidays? I thought you had more heart! Besides it makes more sense to have ghoulish murders during October." Which of course was true so I conceeded the point and promised to do what I could to comfort the old people and he and I ended our conversation. A few days later I get a call from my pops. He says "I have some bad news. Fluffy is gone." I am like "Who?" He says "Fluffy" I say "Who is that? Did you get another horse?" He responds "No Stewey!" I say "Oh STEW the rabbit! Did you look under the house?" So anyway they go about their business looking for the rabbit and he is sending me pictures from Florida! Like these:

Meanwhile Dad and Maryjo are worried but I get a call that he is heading back, his business is finished. He says "You will like how I fool them into thinking that they just misplaced me. It will be great" So I eagerly await news of Stews reappearance Finally my dad and Pete show up for their visit. We were having dinner one night when my dad says "Did I tell you about fluffy?" I of course said "Who?" He replies "Did I tell you about Stewey?" "No" I say playing unaware. His story went "We were real worried about him and he never showed up and we never saw him milling about the house or anything. Then we were putting our artist in residence up in the study, did I tell you we are housing an artist? Anyway she was putting things away when she went to open the closet ans out popped fluff... er... Stewey! He had been in the closet the whole time." I laughed and asked if Stew had been ravishingly hungry when he was sprung knowing he probably hadn't been considering all the carrots he had brought back. Then I laughed at the double entendre about Stewey coming out of the closet. Sorry Stew you knew it was coming! Don't whack me, I do not have any carrots!

So anyway life has been busy. My dad and Pete hung out for a week. They had Dim Sum like 3 or 4 days in a row. I had Dim Sum once, yay! They explored a bit and we watched a lot of football including a horrible demoralizing loss by the Cardinals on Monday Night Football. Which of course was upstaged by a humiliating loss to a winless Raiders team this past weekend... GO CARDS! Anyway the visit was fun but I am glad to be getting back into a routine. I found out Friday that my work routine will be similar to the one I have now when I actually start on the phones. Except that I will have Sunday and Tuesday off instead of Saturday and Sunday but the hours won't change. Other then that life is going good.

As a side note: There are only 2 winners in the why you persevere at work contest. Which means there are still 8 more prizes left! Hurry and enter today!

Some more Stew in Florida pictures for your enjoyment:

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

New Thinking and the 1st October CONTEST!!!

Have you ever just felt like time is rushing right past you? You stop to figure out where to go next and the years sneak past. I have felt that way on and off for the past year, well maybe the past decade. It might be because I will be turning 30 next year. It might be because I have had 5 jobs since this year began. It really doesn’t make much difference why I feel this way the point is that life goes on no matter what you decide to do. I moved to a new state to get a new life. Instead I learned a lesson or two.

What I learned this last year could probably feel a book but I just want to focus on one lesson: Jobs. There is no such thing as the always perfect job. No one can be happy and fulfilled by their job all the time. Even if they are doing what they always there can be several detractors. Coworkers can make life hard, supervisors can make you crazy, the job can be frustrating and tasks of the job can bite the big one. You are probably reading this right now thinking “This is a lesson you just learned?” What you are missing is the fact that my job hunt has always been driven by looking for that elusive perfect job. I have talked to plenty of people that have plugged away at a job that is extremely far from their ideal career and I always thought this person must have something in them that I am missing, I must be broken. In some respects that is true, I was missing something. What I was missing was motivation: Motivation to get me to work, motivation to continually perform well at my position and motivation to put in the time to make it all work. I also realized that I had no real idea how to find that motivation. I had no idea how to create the motivation to work hard and faithfully, besides making sure my rent was paid each month. Strangely bills have never really been that big of a motivator for me, which is kind of funny considering the responsible parents I sprang from. That was the case until just recently. I have found myself thinking a little differently, just a small change in my thinking about work. I find myself participating in training exercises more and I also find myself actually wanting to know things about the job. I am not relying on my ability to pick things up because I actually want to do a genuinely good job.

The thing is that I am not real sure what caused this change. I have made so many changes recently in addition to surviving 2 and a half extremely hard years. There are a lot of things that contributed to my attitude change. The reasons I see as definite contributors towards my new thinking are: wanting 1 stable job amidst a horrible and spotty job history, needing stable income to reinvent myself (this time for real), the ability to actually afford to do something with my design and writing dreams, needing a job that can support my newly enrolled scholastic pursuit and (most shockingly) actually seeing other things I want to try within the company I work for. I have a strange desire to learn new things and that has always been my basis for looking longingly at a new job in a completely new field. I never paid much attention to what the company could offer me besides what I was doing. Sure I said I was interested in opportunities in my interview but I was never serious. It just sounded like something that I should be saying, a thing they wanted to hear me say. This time I really want to get into other departments and figure out what they are all about. I feel really comfortable with what the new job is asking from me and I know that I need to keep my head in there and I figure since I need to do that anyway I might as well really make a go at the other internal opportunities that are open to me. That is a different feeling for me. I am sure people have heard me talk about other opportunities at other jobs I have held but this feels different. I want them to want me. I am now fighting singing the song by Cheap Trick right now.

I don’t know what else to say to paint a better and clearer picture for you. I guess I just need you to trust me and offer some support for this change in my thinking.

That being said I want to announce a contest for a NINJA SHREDZ sticker.


The rules are simple but a little more involved then last time. I want to hear from you about what motivates you to make it to work. Whether it be family obligations, paying for school, a mortgage or some other random reason. I want you to write a small essay style response. If you send me something with a little bit of thought behind this question and you are in the first ten responses you will be a winner. It’s that easy. Yep, there are ten chances to win.

(It is contest number one because if I get the ten responses before the month is over I have contest #2 already ready)

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Life, learning, living and poetry

It seems I have forgotten the blog. A new job and a new scholarly pursuit and the blog gets the back burner treatment. The new job is great, the people are nice and it seems like something I can do. I especially like that it is actually paying me a wee bit of money. I plan on working there for a while and trying out other departments. I know that it will be the usual call center environment where you have to strap in and hold on. The thing that works is that I am not selling people anything. I am just trying to help them out.

That brings me to the scholarly pursuit. I enrolled in the Art Institute for the Media Arts and Animation degree. It is online so everyday after work I come home and do my homework. That has been a lot of fun. There are a variety of people that populate the online learning environment and so far I have found them all pretty interesting. I think I will be able to learn something from the people I am taking the class with. Some of them have a lot of experience in the industry and some just seem to like to draw. Anyway I jumped in head first so I hope I made a good choice. We shall see where all the cards fall.

I have been writint a little bit every day. So even though I am not on here I am still writing. I wanted to share something with you:

The Slow Down

The soft rays of the setting sun cling desperately to the earth,
Things are left half in shadow, my balcony railing, my arms and my legs
The other half glows in the soft yellow sunlight of a day nearing its end
The weather betrays no trace of the changing seasons
Sunny, warm and bright: 3 words that completely describe this day
Wind rustles through the leaves of the still very green trees
Creating a soft shushing sound like a mother calming her baby
I watch and hear it all
As the Sun's rays turn a glowing orange
Before descending into the darker colors of night

Monday, September 25, 2006

First Day Jitters

Well the day arrived and I slowly and shiftily snuck into my new job. The minute I walked in people started talking to me about the insurance exam. No one else had taken it and I was instantly notable for being over that hurdle. It seemed everyone regaurded it as an impossible hurdle blocking their path. Some people told me about a weekend spent feverishy pouring over there book after failing the first practice test Friday. In a way it s humorous that a test that I barely remember worrying about had so deeply affected these people. It isn't even like it's a big deal to fail, the next test is free and they tell you what areas that you didn't do so hot in. So you focus on those areas and hit it again. Anyway I spent most of the day telling people to relax about the test and that they would be ok. I said "take the practice exams to get used to the wording of the questions and then just use them to study from." Other then that I advised that they needed to make sure they slept enough to be ready for the test. Sleep, relax and study moderately. Anyway it helped me meet people quickly since everyone came up to me on the breaks. Other then that we looked at a contract, checked out thye online resources that help us have the answers and then I talked to HR while everyone else took another practice exam. Easy day.

Saturday, September 23, 2006

New photos and the contest winner

Well the week is over and now I await a new challenge on Monday. I am a wee bit nervous but nothing I can't handle. The tux job was a good time but I am looking forward to making more money. The tux job asked me to consider working a few Saturdays for them and I think I may just do that. I enjoyed the people I worked with and I could really use the extra money. It was nice to be asked.

I added a small photoset to the webpage. It is nothing to amazing and I probably will try and hit those places again at a different time of day but I think they are entertaining so check them out. Urban Scenery. Then let me know what you thought.

My mom won the free t-shirt I offered last week. Most of you are like free t-shirt? When, where, how? And yeah there was a t-shirt up for grabs and all you had to do was email me about the site or post a comment on the site or do something involving the site. Easy contest and yet only one person participated. Keep your eyes out next month for a similarly easy contest. I plan on doing a contest every month as long as the funds allow it. So keep an eye out for them and you can get some free swag!

Hope all is well in your little worlds! Mine is going along just fine!

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

All this and nothing at the same time

Well it was annual talk like a pirate day yesterday.... and I missed it. Even after this blog entry! I am sorely disappointed in myself! 40 lashes with a cat of nine tails for me! Landlubbbers beware this is no place for ye! Ok I think I feel better now.

At work I am counting down the days. When I told them I was quitting, the district supervisor cut my hours by 12 hours! I was like "Wow! Can we say petty!" So not real happy about that. My manager, the one that is excited for me and pissed at me at the same time is hooking me up with 6 hours so in the long run I only lose 6. My manager is awesome. Swab the deck! Sorry the pirate lingo is popping out, it is all due to having missed my day. Anyway the week at work is dragging along. I am ready for it to be over and for me to be moving on! It is only 3 more days I keep repeating like a mantra. I should get a big gong and sing the only 3 more days thing and hit the gong between each time. It would be like the gregorian chants ecpt it would be the mikeorian chant.

I recently updated the webpage. You should check it out Then you should email me at to tell me what you think of the new picture and color scheme.

In semi related news I did a redesign on my ninjashredz design. I am looking for a few inspired suggestions to take what I have and turn it from a paragraph of cleverness into a sentence or two of wittyness! If someone can help I will buy them a shirt from my various stores of their choosing. Email me at

I have a large Ode to Stewey tshirt up for grabs to the next person who emails me something site related. It can be spelling errors, blog comments, critiques, or even a picture for me to post. Just relate it to the site and you will get a free shirt! Once again the size is Large so if you can fit it or you know someone to give it to get emailing now!

Monday, September 18, 2006

Quitting a job and living it up on the weekend

Have you ever felt guilty for quitting a job to get paid more? I have. The tuxedo job was fun. It was fun because the manager at my store was cool, the workers in the back were great and the owner was nice. The job itself was a little exhausting. Staying on your feet all day, rushing through the warehouse to replace a product. Measuring people and helping them make important decisions about their big day. Dealing with emotional brides and their harried grooms. Even better is the overzealous mothers that need to add their two cents and make the tension level rise. I always take this moment to remind people that it is a celebration of the bride and groom's commitment to each other and that means it should be a joyous and fun occasion. Then I say don't forget to breathe. There is a lot of good mixed with things I don't like but the money difference is too significant to make staying an option. I guess that is retail for you. Go figure.

After dealing with that this week I had a nice break from the norm with a visit from my dad. I worked everyday but today so I was disappointed that I couldn't drag him to Mt. St. Helens (which is smoking apparently) or to some other random place. We did try a breakfast place or two out. We also went sports bar hunting. We drank beers mixed with limes in glasses lined with salt. They were not high quality beers we normally drink. In fact the first night they were an awful beer called Kokanee. I had tried it on a whim and had hated it but with salt and lime the beer was good. We had ribs one night, wings the next, and pork chops another night. We smoked a pipe and we went to bars. It was a good time. As far as the sports bar hunt goes. It was a wee bit disappointing because the sports bars near me consisted of a couple small tvs showing a few games with the sound off. We finally found a passable place but I am not sure the search should end there. I demand a sports bar that lives and breathes sportiness and bar-i-ness. I want it all baby! Every tv has football on, the tv volume is loud and the fans are raucous! I mean after all what else is there to do in a bar on a perfectly nice Sunday? I mean who needs blue skies and birds singing when there is football? I could do with more shots of the football cheerleaders between plays but football season is great fun. Even when your team chokes big time. Grrr! Stupid crappy Cardinal-Seahawks game! Damn those overeager Seahawk fans/bandwagoners in there hideous blue and neon green jerseys! I mean who decided that color of green was a good idea? And what shade of blue is that anyway? What was with all their passing, running, rushing, blitzing and scoring? They needed to lose! Seriously!

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

A Rambling Review of "There are worse things I could do"

"There are worse things I could do" by Adrienne Barbeau

Last month I went and listened to Adrienne read excerpts from her book about her life and by the time she was done I had bought her book and I was on my way to becoming a fan. Adrienne Barbeau has led a fascinating life full of entertaining stories and experiences and this book is a collection of those. Some are funny, some sad but all are well written and ultimately filled with optimism. I thoroughly enjoyed reading about her experiences on movies that were hits and some that were not (like the infamous rat movie). I enjoyed reading about her experiences on Television shows such as Maude and Carnivale. I was engaged as I read about her battle with self esteem, asking for what she wanted, and her various relationship stories that ultimately led to what sounds like a rewarding marriage with her husband and her three children. It is a book that works the broad spectrum of being a human. Her book is told in short stories that are actually perfect for the way I like to read, since I count pages of chapters before I begin to decide if I want to continue reading. I found myself reading further then I would normally because the chapters were engaging and not too long. I really liked her honest style of writing. She makes you feel like you are talking to her while sipping a cup of coffee and that maybe you are old friends. It is a great book and I recommend you look for it at your local bookshop. If you like audio books I have come to understand that she is going to be releasing one as well. She will be the reader which is such a treat because she made the stories come to life when she read them to us. The whole audience asked her to read more when it seemed she was wondering if she should stop. She also was amazingly approachabel and her autograph lie was a little slow because of it, she actually listened to what people said as she signed and posed for pictures. I did not go to the reading because I knew a lot about her or that I was a fan before but after I read a little and I got to know her I will be keeping my eye out for her in the future, in film and in print (she is going to be writing a vampire series).

Monday, September 11, 2006

Another Baby

I recently put in a lot of information in my blog about Kevin and Becky's baby. I also talked about my cousin Robert and Denise's impending (April) bundle of joy in my newsletter. That prompted my other cousin Jeremiah to send pictures of his new addition. I had promised these pictures a while back and they are finally here and she is a cutie! Her name is Maile.

This last picture is so funny. She has a beautiful smile!

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Barnes and Noble and all the dog poo you can handle

I was at home after a long Saturday of work. I had watched my Netflix rental and I was starting to get antsy. I had not done anything after work because I had felt tired. Now 3 hours later I had no idea what to do with the rest of the evening and my tiredness had faded. I hadn't eaten dinner but I wasn't hungry. I had watched TV but now I couldn't find anything decent to watch. It was too late to really hop a bus and find something to do downtown. So I headed to my old back up plan. Barnes and Noble. I can kill a few hours reading a Graphic Novel (also known as big comic books) and pretend like I was doing research for the comics I want to start producing..... When I got there the parking lot was pretty empty. The only places still open were Chili's, Macy's and B&N. I parked and headed to the door and along the way I saw a trail of dog poo.... fresh dog poo. Then I saw a man and his dog. I kept telling myself just go inside and don't worry about it. Then my righteous ingignation flared up and my mouth opened and sound came out. "Clean up after your dog!" He looked at me startled, then decided to forego any response and merely ignore me. That was probably his worst mistake ever, being ignored only increases my dramatics as I am sure a lot of you have noticed. "I know you heard me. If you are going to own a dog you have to know it will take a crap occasionally. Knowing that, you should be ready for that occurence and clean up after it. If you don't want to pick up dog crap don't own a dog. However, since you do in fact own a dog and it has defiled the walkway it is now your duty to clean up after it." He continued to ignore me by staring through the Barnes & Noble window at the books on display. I had just gotten primed and I was not done. "You can click your sparkly red shoes together and recite 'There is no place like home' all you want Dorothy but it doesn't seem to be working. So you might as well pick up after Toto." This got a snicker from the high school kids who sat on a nearby bench. It also made the man walk away real fast in the other direction. I yelled, "I hope you are running off to get a little baggie. There is a whole lot of poop back here!" His pace quickened as he yanked the little dog behind. I finally went inside and fell into my book and soon I was being told over the speakers that the store was closing. When I came out the poop was still there. Damn that Dorothy! And his little dog too!!

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

My Labor Day

My labor day was just packed.

I woke up around 9 to embrace the day with a bowl of oatmeal. Then I ran out the door and caught a bus downtown. It was free admission at the Oregon Historical Museum..... apparently everyone else in the state (that weren't at the beach) got the same memo. It was crowded. I tried to peer at the exhibits but it was like 3 people deep. I kept getting elbowed and people kept bumping me out of the way. Some muttered apologies and some looked at me like I had offended them by being in their way. One guy ran into me and I picked him up and threw him through the "I like Ike" display in the Presidential exhibit. I am typing to you from prison. Bubba says hi and he thinks that I have a "purty" mouth. Ok so maybe I am at home and imagining hurling that guy through the exhibit, being in the pokey and having a guy named Bubba compliment my mouth. The guy I wanted to hurl most definately existed as did the "Ike" paraphenalia, they are both still intact though. It was way too crowded and I ended up speeding through the exhibits because I couldn't stand all the random people jostling me about. I couldn't read the words explaining the exhibits anyway, I could never get close enough. So I looked and noted that I would come again.... unfortunately the presidential exhibit is going away soon so I guess my views from afar will have to suffice. I had been in the museum for an hour and I was really tired of the crowd. So I headed down to Powell's. I grabbed a mocha and an available chair and busied myself reading a book for a while. I was there for about the same amount of time as the museum when I got antsy and bolted. I started walking South. Hoping to catch the tram to the bus stop. I never did catch the tram. I did not have patience to wait for it. I walked to the bus stop and as I rode away I finally saw the tram come by. Had I waited I would have been waiting again for the bus. I headed home. I was a little irritated with the way the day turned out. I had a coupon for a free rental from Blockbuster. So I stopped by to use it, in hopes that this movie would be my saving grace. It wasn't. The movie I rented was not even something that could hold my attention for very long so there will be no review. In fact I won't even mention the name. I found myself sitting at home watching Buffy again when I remembered that the Mission Theater Pub had Buffy night on Mondays. Big movie screen, beer and food + 3 episodes of Buffy with other buffy lovin' freaks!! What more could I ask for? I hopped in my car and this time followed the mapquest directions (something I failed to do last week which resulted in lack of Buffiness). I got there and there was a line of similar minded geeks waiting to be let in. Once we entered we heard that the projector had broke and a new one was on the way. With a slight delay the Buffy show would go on as planned. I ordered a beer and a cheeseburger and picked a spot. It's a theater pub so that is why I had a beer.... I already said that, try to keep up. I waited and waited and waited. The projector that was brought in was not able to be set up. I think it was because the guy didn't know how.... but whatever. He announced that if we wanted a refund on the food and beer purchased (the Buffster was free) he would gladly do it. He also said that for those that would like to stay we could watch Clerks 2 for free. The film projector worked, the digital projector didn't. I had already thrown my reciept away so even though I had seen Clerks 2 I decided to watch it again and wait for my food. It was much better the second time. I think most of Kevin Smith's movies are better on the second viewing. Anyways the beer and burger were good and the movie was a lot funnier. Maybe because all attendees were over 21, as opposed to the matinee I had seen with mothers and daughters and old men trying to beat the heat. Or maybe it was the fact that I was watching it with a beer in hand. It was a slight disaster of a day but it was a fun disaster. Next Monday I will try it again, the Buffy part I mean. Not the disaster part. Or the hurling people part.

Monday, September 04, 2006

Writing sucks... sometimes

Every once in a while I have trouble putting words to paper. I hit a wall and nothing seems to flow out right. I have ideas and things I want to write about but I can't get them to follow a pattern that makes sense. All the ideas try to rush out at once and all I have is several paragraphs of confusing nonsense. You can tell there is a point I am trying to make but you are not sure what it is. At these times I usually head for a book called "A Creative Writer's Kit". It has one idea everyday for the whole year. I do not follow it religiously it is just for back up which means that in 2 years I might have used 20 ideas from it. Most of the ideas I find incredibly stupid or hard to work with but I force something out so I can move on. I have never had an idea from that come out so well that I share them. Like I said it is my back up. I use it to help me get going again. Usually it works but I don't think it did today. What came out was a bigger mess then usual. I will just have to force myself to get out tomorrow, experience life and try again.

Thursday, August 31, 2006

The Baby, Job talk, holiday plans ramble

The baby take 2:

Mercedes Rose is 7 pounds 5 ounces and 20.5 inches long. It is still cute... as far as I have been told.

On to other things:

I wanted to let everyone know that I recieved a call right before I spilled the beans about my impending departure from the tux job. The call was from the new job saying that they wanted me to push back my start date until the 25th because I was licensed. So I am still working incognito at the tux place. I recently saw a bit of reality with the tux shop as far as pay is concerned and I have no intention of making a quick change to the tux job as a career. I was talking to the manager and she was telling me her annual salary would be still less then I would make with the insurance company. That included her commission. That was enough for me. It just isn't enough money to work as hard as you do. My back and feet are killing me and everyday I get less and less excited about the next day. Yeah it will be good to get out of there while I can still enjoy it. I wish I had some cash to take advantage of the dress clothes discounts but unfortunately I do not. I can order a suit and pay cost plus ten percent. Oh and I am not just talking tuxedos! Oh well.

So does anyone have any Labor Day plans? I was thinking about a little bbq action and maybe a beer. Then the landlord struck by leaving an evil note saying no bbq'n on the patio or the decks.... but it fails to tell you where you can bbq. This bums me out a bit and I have no back up plan. My dad is going to some fossil beds in Eastern Oregon with Maryjo. I had been thinking of heading down there and poking around but that is a no go. I will let you know what I come up with..... you should let me know what you are doing. And if you are wondering if my you means you you, it does. Hehe. You big group of non emailing peeps!

I have recently decided to pursue a degree in media arts and animation through the Art Institute and I will be sending in my application tomorrow. I had to wait because you need to pay the 50 dollar admission fee these days. I didn't have 50 dollars in fact I still don't. I am borrowing it from my dad. It will be an online degree so I can work it into my schedule no matter when I work. It will work with my focus on working a job and squashing my debts taking precedence. I like the idea of the flexibility and the curriculum had a lot of the things I want to learn anyway. SO I am just doing it.

Other then that I have nothing new to add..... Ramble out.


Well I had some things to tell you but Kevin and Becky trumped me by having their baby yesterday at 3 am. I know that both baby and mama are doing well. The baby is named Mercedes Rose. Here is a picture for your enjoyment, courtesy of Kevin.

I do not know anything like weight or length or anything as of yet. I still haven't called him... Yeah I am a bad friend. He started it though by emailing me the news... so nanny nanny boo boo.

Monday, August 28, 2006

Kicking out the latest and greatest....

I suppose everyone is wondering where I have been.... or maybe not. I have been working all week and that pretty much sums it up. I am not filled with angst or irritation, I am not jobless or underemployed, in fact I have too many jobs... That is a first and that may be the reason the blog entries have decreased. I have to give my notice at the tux job this week. That ought to be fun (please read that line with a hint of sad sarcasm). I know that Carolyn (the store manager) likes me and Ed (the company owner) does as well. It makes it a little harder to leave knowing that but I highly doubt they are going to raise my salary up enough to make the other offer go away. I don't see why they would. If they did they would have to raise a lot of peoples wages and let's face it... that isn't good business. Or so they tell me. Good business is paying as low as possible and then complaining about the lack of loyalty and the difficulty in finding good solid employees. Good business is laying off hundreds even thousands of workers in order to prevent yourself from having a bad quarter. Good business is not trying new things because they might fail. Good business is not something I am interested in or even particularly fond of... I would love to be a multimillionaire but I really don't think I have the right mentallity to ever get that accomplished. I finally said it... I am not the next Bill Gates. Oh well. The reality of the situation is I want a livable wage and to not work myself to death to accomplish this. I know work is a necessary evil even though it galls me that work takes up so much of everyone's life. I have always felt that work should be less of a focal point in our day to day interaction. I have even wrote the line "I am not my job" in this very blog. Unfortunately other people don't see the world that way. You either have a respectable job and a good living or you are not worth the time. I want to get out of debt and work on building a future instead of worrying about how to get through one more week of poverty. That is why I am heading to the best paying gig since I left Liberty Mutual two years ago. This time thought I don't have to sell anything.... I just have to deal with upset people. Guess what every job I have ever had I have dealt with upset people. Do you know why? People are emotional creatures we go through a new set of emotions every few seconds. We are also a bunch of whiny windbags.... You know it's the truth. I mean my whole blog is full of me this, me that and a heckuvalota woah is me's! So I am returning to a call center but this call center will actually pay me a decent wage....

In the meantime I have made some interesting decisions about what I need to do to find a better fit in the future. I have been all over the place in the last month or so with different schools and what not but I am finally realizing that whatever I do it needs to be something creative. Photography, writing, animation.... maybe all of it. I figured that much out now I need to figure out how to make it happen.

Speaking of creative endeavors..... Kevin K has started taking photos at weddings for people. He asks for a little bit more then his costs and hands over tons of shots to people. He still is in the digital only stage but he is taking on a few projects where he will produce a whole album for a few weddings. I mean a hard copy album by the way. That is pretty exciting. In other news Becky K is very pregnant and the baby should be arriving sometime this upcoming month.

Their is another Kevin that has been in my thoughts lately. My college roommate and good friend Kevin C has announced his upcoming wedding recently. It seems I will be heading to LA sometime next year.

My mom has been on a rollercoaster so far this year with her new job as a Junior High resource teacher. She has had great days and horribly abysmal days. She is always seeking advice from me and other people and I have been telling her all along the same thing. Keep going into work everyday caring about these kids and things will work out. That is the only true path to achieving what you need to do, plugging away until the job is done. Everytime I tell her that I get to remind myself of that fact. The only way to get what you need is to go out and seek it out. The only way to do that is to get up everyday and work towards it. Whatever 'it' may be.

In other news my grandpa has been having problems with the government lately. Recently the government discovered the classified him wrong when doling out his pension and have decided tat he owes them for their mistake. So for the next 18 months he will not be getting a check.... Seems like a good call, right? I don't really get how a decision that is your responsibility and done by you or in this case by your human resources department is someone elses mess to clean up. The mistake is yours and the correct way to fix it is too stop overpaying and suck up the lost income. The mistake was on your end after all. The government is retarded. I love that their solution is too take it back by not giving him anything for a year and a half. There by making their error his problem. Talk about a compassionate system. To add to all this he has been having heart problems in which his heart slows down to scary levels which result in him not having enough blood pumping to get energy to do anything. On a good note he found some people to sell some of his garden's crop too. He has been making a little cash by selling Okra in town to some local business. He has had a few calls already for a new supply to be delivered.

Well I hope you are in good health as you read this.... Drop me a line sometime.

Monday, August 21, 2006

The book reading

After I tinkled into a cup for the requisite drug test I hopped into my car and headed 20 minutes away to a Border's bookstore where the book reading and signing would take place with Adriene Barbeau. I was early so I grabbed a few comics to read while I waited then I migrated upstairs until I could get a great big comfy seat. I continued reading until she was introduced and started talking. It was alot of fun her stories she read were funny and she was extremely nice and approachable. I picked up a copy and then immediately prayed that I didn't need to gas up until after the 1st which will be my next payday. I stood in line while people that actually knew things about her career went up and talked to her about this or that. I really had nothing to say even though I had seen her in a few things so I had her sign my book, snap a photo and I asked about her website because I like everyone to be able to access people and things I talk about. She was gracious and showed me that it was on her bookflap.... I thanked her and ran away. I had really enjoyed listening to her talk and read. I would greatly enjoy getting an audiobook of this ladies stories. It is interesting to me that until 6 years ago she never considered herself a writer but in the first chapter of her book she talks about writing journals since she was in the fifth grade. You don't have to be published or hang out in coffee shops and read melodramatic poems to people that like the poem only when it makes no sense to be a writer. A writer is someone who has a hard time not writing everyday. Someone who struggles with the right words to fully express the emotions that flew threw them through the days. Someone that absolutely has to write even if they never plan on sharing them. A writer is more then a job it is a way of life. I am a writer. I write even when I am not posting it for you to read. I am a writer even though you can't buy my words in the bookshop or on the newsstand. It was great to hear how this book came about and that she will have future books on the way. She was signed to write a series of vampire novels, which made me giggle. From not thinking of herself as a writer to being published and then being tapped to write a series.... not a writer my hind parts! It was fun to hear her talk about the different projects she was a part of. The television shows, the movies, and the plays. She seems to be a fascinating person and I look forward to reading this book. So if you know who she is and if you don't chek her out... she seems worth her salt. The book is titled "There Are Worse Things I Could Do". You might recognize that line from a song sung by Rizzo in Grease. She was in the Broadway version.

The up to date update...

Well it seemed like it was time to update. Last week was long and tiring. I wasted time Tuesday with an interview with Farmers. I accepted thinking that it was another claims position but when I got there I soon realized it was a sales position. Another position where they expected me to come out of pocket.... I have nothing in my pocket. Why do they require such an investment why can't they help you get started and set up a reinvestment program that a portion of your money made would go back into your business. They could even set it up that if you quit before making certain numbers you would have to pay a portion back. It would get the more serious people in the door and it would provide incentive to keep plugging away. Of course we all know that insurance companies do not like to part with money so none of this is relevant. They will keep doing things the hard way and not allow poor people to get started in their business.

Speaking of the evil insurance companies. Thursday morning I had another interview with a different insurance company. It was for a customer service position. I did the interview my way which was comfortable and then I went to work. Today I got the offer. They want me to work for them as long as I pass the drug test, background check and the credit check. I am sipping on a huge glass of water right now so that I can take care of the drug test. Doesn't it always seem that when you need to pee you can't? The drug test center is right up the street so I will head there in 30 minutes and then I am off to the Borders store for a book reading by Adrienne Barbeau. She has been an actress for many years. She was in Escape from new york, maude, carnivale, cannonball run, creepshow. Anyway she wrote her own autobiography and she will be reading from it and it sounds like fun.

In the Tuxedo world, they have hired and fired 3 people last week and they are in dire need of help. People all over the state will be leaving for college and there are major gaps everywhere. I am not sure what they will do about people and I am sure when I give my notice they will be a little dismayed.... I am waiting until the final go ahead from the insurance company. I want to make sure it will happen before I put myself out in the breeze. I have a large amount of debt floating around so that is the only thing I am currently worried about. Well wish me continued luck and have a great day.

Monday, August 14, 2006

The Job and my last 2 day weekend in the near future.

I survived my first 5 days of work. It is a lot of running around and pretending to have a clue about what is going on. Today we got 3 other trainees and one came in wearing a t-shirt. I was pretty amazed. I am slowly getting the hang of measuring people for their tuxedos. I am pretty good at walking the floor with them and helping them select styles. The other guy that started with me took an hour and a half with one couple. I was floored. Like anyone wants to spend that long talking to him. Speaking of the guy I started with this is an interesting story. I got to work on Friday, later then I would have liked but 5 minutes before I would have to start. SO I clocked in and went to work running around, measuring people, and talking to the guy who was leaving the company. I was at work for a half an hour before I noticed that guy was not there yet. We will call him J for the sake of this story. Anyways J was not there and he hadn't called. 2 hours later he was still MIA. They called his phone and he didn't answer. He did not call at all on Friday. So we wrote him off. We figured he had moved on to bigger and better things. So I show up today and we are looking at the schedule because he had figured prominently in this week's schedule and we had figured we had seen the last of him. It started getting busy and I was checking suits back in and sorting them out to be cleaned. All of a sudden I hear Carolyn (the store boss) say "J! What are you doing here?" He went into some stupid story about being on his way to work and having his car break down. He tried to get it startedbut it was not his lucky day. After 15 minutes he called someone to have it towed somewhere. At this point Carolyn says "Oh well we hadn't heard from you and we were worried. We thought you liked it but you just didn't show up or even call." J says well I called Pam (the regional mgr) because all I had was her number around 1 PM. She did not get back to me until Sunday.

Carolyn and I were talking during J's hour and a half sale. She doesn't believe him and neither do I. First of all how do you not have the number? It's in the yellow pages. Don't you think if it is your first week you would be trying to get in touch to tell people you are having a day of bad luck as opposed to being fired?

Seems fishy right. Let me help you read between the lines. For whatever reasoin J got up and did not want to go to work. Maybe he overslept, maybe it was the 9 am to 8 pm shift he put in or maybe he had a sweet interview to go to. I am not sure but for whatever reason he decided to not go to work today. He waited until late enough in the day to call Pam and wiggle out of it with a car break down story. Except she had had a full week and she had called it a day early. She got back to the phone and called him when she felt like dealing with it. Then J pulled out all the charm and talked his way back into a job.

Meanwhile that day of having him gone really earned me points and helped me build confidence in how I do my job. I can handle a lot of scenarios now.

So work is going well. I can't say I love it but I can handle it. My weekend was good though. Unfortunately it is the end of the 2 days off in a row as long as I have this job. My dad rolled into town Thursday for a Friday conference. Thursday night we headed to a Chinese food place in my near vincinity in his big ol' (make that new) Dodge Ram. Friday night my dad cooked. Saturday we hung out all day in downtown Portland. We rode the bus into town and we just went romping about. We headed to Henry's for the burgers. I had a Brewery BBQ Burger and he had the Mushroom Swiss Burger. We split them up so we could have half of each. I learned that I prefer my burger to his. We cruised around on the street car and ended up at Bridgeport Brewery. We shared a sampler and decided that if we had our druthers we would go somewhere else but we did find a few beers that we could stomach.We liked the Amber, the porter and (suprisingly) the ESB. We could tolerate the Stout and the IPA. We did not like the Pale Ale or the Barleywine. The Supris made us nearly revisit our lunch. From there we headed to Borders and spent some quality time with books we had no intention of actually buying. Then we headed back to Henry's for a beer during happy hour. My chice, Paulaner Octoberfest, had went bad and it soured my experience. Even the excellent Hoegaarden did not revitalize the experience. We threw in some great crab cakes into the mix and then headed back home on the bus. Sunday I cooked breakfast and we ran a few errands and then he headed back home.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

The new gig...

I never knew how much choice went into selecting a tuxedo. I guess since I have never selected a tuxedo before I never really understood how many choices there were. I have definately worn tuxes but I have always been part of the wedding party and the marrying couple do the picking. I never went to prom and as best as I can recall I never got married not even all those drunken nights spent in Vegas. There was no Britney Spears moments that I recall. So if one day a lady shows up at my door claiming to be my wife I will be as flummoxed as you will be. So all these choices are being presented to me and I am trying to remember there crazy numbering system on top of it. Another thing that is completely new is having to measure people. I did it twice today and I was downright flustered. The other new guy I am training with seems to be a better fit for this vocation. He seems to be a little more in tuoch with his fashion sense and has opinions about things. I am pretty much good with all the styles but he can talk for hours about what he likes and doesn't. I am not sure that he is gay but he definately would be metrosexual. If you are new to the term google it.

The first day we spent reading, walking the floor and looking at the various styles, exploring the warehouse facility where they dryclean, press and configure the tuxedos. Today we started off reading about measurements, practicing measuring and then we spent the rest of the day helping out on the floor. I felt like an idiot measuring people because I could never get the tape to work with me. I did enter an entire order from walk in to walk out. I also assisted in the checking in and out of tuxes. It was pretty exciting, action packed and getting a chance to do it started putting things into perspective. I still feel timid about all this but I know that soon I will feel right at home.

Tomorrow we start at 9AM and burn until 7PM. We will start in the back wharehouse where we will put together several tuxes to be pulled for tomorrow. Then we will head up front and check out tuxes all day. It should be slamming busy and that will be a good way to learn.

I have to tell you that my feet are killing me. My dogs are definately barking! I have a good idea what I will be investing in when I have a few bucks to spend. Comfortable dress shoes made for standing all day. Do you have any recommendations?

BTW no one has commented on the new blog layout.....

Monday, August 07, 2006

The Rambling Review of CHICKEN LITTLE

There has been a lot going on in the past week. I have given up my cable because I couldn't afford it. I have taken and quit a job. I am about to start a new job o tomorrow. It seemed like a day to see a movie. I had canceled Netflix but apparently not before they took their $15.00 charge out. So when I checked the mail I had 2 films waiting for me. Chicken Little and Aeon Flux. I looked at the two and I thought Chicken Little is the safe bet..... so now I bring you the RAMBLING REVIEW of CHICKEN LITTLE!!!

(These reviews so need theme music)

This is a Disney movie that is retelling an old fable. Familiar country for that kid friendly giant with the mouse ears. Unfortunately everyone that made this film is a comlete and total idiot. Ok, maybe I am going to far. Maybe kids shows don't have to be good, I mean they are after all for kids. The same group that love Barney, Teletubbies and the Wiggles. It's not as if they are charging money to both child and adults to see this. Oh wait they are. This is not ok there is no excuse for this movie. This movie was just plain awful. It is not funny, entertaining or even all that clever. Hold on this is a review not a bash so let me step back for a minute.

The story. A small crazy chicken freaks out his town, not a barn but a town. Yes there are no humans in this town it is just like a Richard Scarry book brought to life, if Richard Scarry was the worst writer in the world! Anyway so he freaks out the whole town by telling them the sky is falling. Mayhem ensues and then they figure he must be crazy. His dad hurriedly pushes the my son is crazy angle. His dad is lame, there are no redeeming qualities in his dad. He doesn't believe in his son until the end and he basically makes Chicken Little feel like a failure through the whole movie. Great fun... laugh riot. I love movies about disfunctional family relations and I bet so do the kids!! Anyway so everyone turns it into a big teasing game. The other animals are mean to him except an ugly duck, a pig so fat it can't hardly move and and a fish with a divers helmet full of water. Yeah, gee, I wonder why he gets picked on. Of course we find out that something really did fall from the sky. It was a piece of an alien spacecraft. The aliens seem mean and chase Chicken Little and his homies around until once again Chicken Little alerts the town and the town misses the show completely and they think he is crazy again. Dad comes back in apologizing for the kid. Then Chicken Little discovers a little alien that was left behind. At that moment the aliens start invading but they don't want to conquer the world they just want to find their kid. So a lot of senseless and stupid mayhem ensues, Chicken Little and his dad make up, Chicken Little shows the ugly duck some love and then he, his friends and his pops save the day. Woofreakinghoo! But wait there's more! The end has them all watching a movie abut what happened. It was like channeling Pee Wee's Big Adventure's ending. This was the best part. The last 2 minutes.
They have some serious star power in this movie: Garry Marshall, Zach Braff, Don Knotts, Patrick Stewart, Wallace Shawn, Joan Cusack, and Adam West. I mean they have quite a list of people but the movie was just bad. There was nothing redeemable about this movie. It wasn't cute, the story was horrible, and the characters were annoying. This screen shot of the pig shows exactly what I thought of the movie - A real stomach turner!