Wednesday, January 30, 2008


Hello all,
Sorry I have been MIA for a while. I have been busy and lazy all at the same time. So anyway school was interesting on Saturday. I walked in and discovered we had an assignment due. First day and a paper is due. I was a wee bit miffed. Luckily the teacher was understanding and allowed the small group of us that were not in the loop to turn in the paper the following day. I wrote a 2 page paper about why I had decided on this major. I had to trim it a bit because I was just getting going and I realized I had hit the word maximum. The first class seems really easy but I figure they are focusing on teaching you how to use this 'Flexnet' system. The students have all sorts of backgrounds and age ranges so you can not expect everyone to know how to use the system. Even though it is easy it has a lot of busy work associated with it so the class has kept me pretty busy. In fact I will be logging on and participating after I get done blathering to you.

As far as job hunt news goes I had my second interview for a position with another insurance company on Monday and hope to hear positive news from them by the end of next week. Since I do not believe in pinning all hopes in one place I set up my resume on two of the main job search sites. I have sent resumes to several jobs already and hope to hear some positive news that results in me getting out of the current dead end. The dead end is a battle to make it through every day and I can't wait until I have another place to go to.

This weekend my father is coming up for the Blazer vs. Knicks game. My roommate, dad and I are going to it Friday night. We get to boo former Blazer Zach Randolph. Yay!

Friday, January 25, 2008

The impending weekend

Well this is a big weekend for me. From here on out I am a school attending fool! My 1st class starts tomorrow! Some of you may have read I went home sick on Wednesday... well I also was at home Thursday and Friday. I did not want to be sick when I went to my first class. I wanted to be with it and ready to charge into the action. So I took the time off to insure proper health. It did not hurt that I also managed an interview or two in that time frame but mainly I was at home watching movies and sleeping. I feel a lot better then I did earlier this week as a result. Anyway wish me luck as I begin my masters degree program.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

You're Precocious!

I was looking around at what other reviewers were saying about the movies I reviewed recently. I noticed a disturbing trend when it came to the movie Juno. Everyone felt it necessary to use the word precocious. I hate that word. It is used whenever any show has teenagers or kids who are actually intelligent. I don't know about you but I know several teenagers who are more intelligent then quite a few adults. So why does it seem shocking that when people make a movie showing young adults in interesting situations that they react reasonably and intelligently? Precocious is a word that makes you sound like an ageist and a pompous ass. Stop using that word, it is dumb. Teenagers are not stupid. They are usually impulsive and don't always think things through but so are a lot of 30 year olds. Hell I know a lot of impulsive 50 year olds. It is part of human nature to occasionally say or do stupid things. It is also part of human nature to occasionally do the right thing and make the right decision, regardless of age. In fact I think kids tend to see answers adults over look. I have decided I will no longer read reviewers that write the word precocious. It is my petty little boycott of a stupid word. Say it out loud and then try to tell me it didn't just make you sound like a snobby sanctimonious (that word is nearly as bad as precocious except that it is very fun to say) jerk. In fact, saying the word precocious out loud probably made you feel like a retard. The person next to you is thinking "Wow, who uses the word Precocious? What a pompous ass!"

In case you are not familiar with the word defines it as: unusually advanced or mature in development, esp. mental development: a precocious child.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Interviews are dumb

Well I am writing from home at 10:30 in the morning on a Wednesday. I just got back from my interview for the Sales position at my current company. Nothing bad is happening to the sales team in Portland just the service side. Anyway I am also combating a cold so I took the rest of the day off. I dragged my sorry carcass in for the interview and I think I single handedly sunk any hope of getting this position. My brain was not up to speed and the questions they asked kept stumping me. These questions are new since I last had a parade of interviews. They take stupidity to a whole new level. I hate being asked to say what a person who likes me and a person who doesn't like me would say my weaknesses are. I don't know. Next time I have a free moment I will go slug someone and say 'now that you don't like me what would you say my weaknesses are?' Here is the thing... I don't care what people who don't like me say or feel about me. I really don't think that is a question I would ask someone who likes me either. Who has answers for this pscho-analytical bs? I can come up with a lot of weird wild stories off the top of my head but these interview questions were not working for me. As many of you faithful readers know I was no stranger to the interview. I interviewed all over the place for all types of positions. The questions were almost all the same and I had answers for them. Now I am out of practice and the questions are different and seem to be "Let's talk about why you suck!" Well I have a phone interview at 3, hopefully that goes better.

Monday, January 21, 2008

The Return of RTA!

Yes you read that right. I am announcing the 2nd Annual Repetitive Task Awards. This time with a firm deadline in place, February 16th.

What is the Repetitive Task Awards about?
Well it's an award show for people that are not overpaid sports stars, actors or musicians. It is an award show for the average joe. It awards those that do the same tasks daily to pay the bill collectors. The little guy needs recognition.

How can I be part of the Repetitive Task Awards?
First of all you can't be famous or rich. Second you need to have a job you do that you may or may not like. You need to be a wage donkey. Third you need to be nominated. You can nominate yourself but people need to be nominated and there needs to be a reason. Like I nominate myself for the Going To Work award because I have not played hookey in over a year. I of course can not participate so that is an example.

What kind of tasks are being awarded?
I am glad you asked. The first is Going to Work. The second is Paying Bills. The third is Answering Your Phone. And the fourth is for Packing a Lunch to Work Daily.

What if I think your categories are lame?
Feel free to suggest one and if it is popular or cool I will bump one of mine for it. Remember to really sell the idea.

What if noone nominates themselves?
Well then nobody wins. I will only award 4 people in 4 seperate categories so if you want to win and no one is in a category pitch your tent there.

Can I protest?
Sure.... as my cousin found out it doesn't deter me. In fact I find it all very amusing. Hence the 2nd Annual RTA.... In fact protesting might net you an RTA this year. It really should have last year.

The Prizes?
Well I have not designed it yet but I am coming up with the idea. I will announce them later. Which brings up a good point. I will need addresses if you win. I will actually send you some stupid award trinket.... They are awesome. Just ask my dad since he was the only winner last year.

The Fine Print
I want an acceptance speech.... so if you nominate yourself please have an acceptance speech ready in case you win.

A Rambling Review of Juno

So the bonus movie I saw on Saturday was far better then the one I paid for and it seemed that I stumbled into the theater by chance. I was debating where to go and had kept walking past movies I did not want to see and was at the end of the row. I was looking at the Water Horse, Sweeney Todd or Juno. I went for Juno because the commercials had made me laugh and the Water Horse had made me want to punch small fluffy animals. (not really the commercial just made me not want to see it) As luck would have it I made a smart choice as this movie had not started yet but was moments away from doing so. Within 2 minutes the lights dimmed and the movie started....

What's it about? A spoiler warning: I won't tell as much as I did about Cloverfield because I don't have a grudge against this flick but I may tell some plot points so just be warned.

So Juno is a girl and we learn in the middle of the movie her name is from the mythological Juno not the town in Alaska. Anyway we are introduced to her as she is downing a jug of Sunny D! I was wondering how she was getting it all down when she walks into a little grocery store and grabs a pregnancy test. Apparently her third test since she had not liked what the first 2 had said. So she is pregnant and the boy behind it is the kid who was also in Superbad, not the bespectacled dorky McLovin kid but the other dorky skinny kid. The interesting thing is he is not a jerk and kind of finds out she is pregnant and that she is 'taking care of it' all in one fell swoop. You kind of feel bad for him since he does not seem to know what is going on or how to react. Our main character Juno has quite the swagger and she is head strong so I was automatically rooting for her. She decides to go to Women Now and have an abortion. She happens to know the lone protester and stops to converse with her and the protester tells her that babies have fingernails and for whatever reason that is the straw that breaks the camels back. She decides to have the baby and give it up for adoption. Her best friend helps her find the right parents by looking in the Pennysaver.... I had no idea you could sell or buy a baby via the Pennysaver. Then she goes to tell her dad and stepmom who handle her pregnancy very well. Meanwhile the poor guy is kind of like not even an issue. The next thing you know you meet the adopters. Jennifer Garner is a neat freak who desperately wants kids and you can tell by her house she has no clue what children are about. Then there is the husband who seems pretty cool he used to be in a band and seems to be the odd piece that does not quite fit into Jennifer's puzzle. So anyway Juno starts getting bigger and we watch this wise cracking girl deal with a lot of things that people her age are not supposed to have to but she does deal with them very well. She also made me laugh a lot. I liked this movie and I recommend you see it to see how the pregnancy, the non mother like wannabe mom, the ex-rocker husband, the boy who got left behind and a slightly strange but well meaning family cope with a strange situation. It is clever and funny. At times somethings she says and the way she said it channeled Napoleon Dynamite a bit but she is smarter then he ever could be and if you hated him you won't hate her. It is funny that the act that started all this is often referred to having occured because she was bored.... I wish I had more bored girls around me. Not for them to get pregnant but for the other reason... hehehe.

Anyway see the movie... I would even have paid for this one. I wish I had paid to see it instead of giving my money to Cloverfield.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

My Rambling Review of Cloverfield

This movie sucked.... really. Have you ever been forced to watch some family video that some one who had not quite mastered how to move with a camera was in charge of shooting? Remember how the quick pans and the juggling of the camera kind of irritated you? Maybe it even made you feel a wee bit queasy.... Well the retards who shot Cloverfield thought hey let's do an entire movie like that. For all that is holy, why?! How is this getting any positive press at all? I was complaining about the shaky camera thing in the Bourne movies but this is way worse. Within the first 10 minutes I knew I had wasted my money. So why did I continue watching? Well I kept waiting for these characters, that were lame, to die and for whoever was viewing this archival film to take over and the good part to start. Then when I realized THIS was the movie I kept hoping it would end soon. It was the longest hour and a half ever.

So what is it about? This would be the part where I tell you all about the movie. So totally a Spoiler warning here.

I am glad you asked.... I have no freaking clue. No really, I don't have a clue. Here is what you see. Someone logs into an archive and starts playing a film from the Cloverfield file. It starts with a couple in a fancy apartment talking about going to Coney Island and then cuts to another couple playing with the camera while the girl tells the boy to film people saying goodbye to his brother at a going away party. The guy doesn't want to do it so he pawns it off on his brother's seemingly retarded friend. So we see a bunch of boring party scenes and the retarded friend hitting on some girl who wishes he would just drop dead... or at least that's what her eyes were saying. Then the brother shows up and it is the guy who was in the beginning... apparently this is his camera and they are taping over his dream day with the girl of his dreams that he slept with and then blew off. Don't you wish you could be the object of his desire? Real nice guy, right? Anyway the girl shows up with some other guy... obviously to piss him off and they argue and she leaves. Then there is an explosion and guess what it sounds like an explosion but every character says "was that an earthquake?" Apparently to be in New York you have to think explosions are earthquakes... apparently. They all run to the roof to see the earthquake, I guess.... when another explosion goes off and they all run back inside and down the stairs as huge pieces of shrapnel demolish nearby buildings. They stop calling it an earthquake. As a group they all run outside as a cloud of dust and whatever blows through and they take refuge in a convenience store. Then they get the bright idea to go outside. While outside the girl that was blowing off our stupid camera man is out there and looks scared and is talking about something eating people. So they decide to get out of Manhattan and they are crossing the Brooklyn bridge when something takes the bridge out and the brother who was supposed to be filming dies..... boo hoo. Then they run back across and the brother that is alive gets a call from the girl he slept with and ditched and she is whining about bleeding and being scared. So they go the other direction into the middle of Manhattan to save her. 4 people... the brother, the girlfriend of the dead brother, the girl who hates the camera guy and the camera guy. It does not get any better. Everyone else from the party is either dead or smarter then these 4. They finally show the monster and he is really badly computer generated and is completely lame looking. We of course know nothing about it but apparently he is shedding little biting things that look even stupider then it did. So the 4 brain surgeons go underground into the subway and decide to walk in the dark through the tunnels. Of course the bitey things are following them and when the 4 rocket scientists see rats running past them they stop to discuss it. I am sorry but if I am ever anywhere that rats are running en masse in a direction I am going to run that way too. I don't know a lot about rats but I do know that if they are all running past you like that you should probably run.... I mean come on! So anyway they get attacked and the evil eye chick gets bit. Which is bad... they somehow stumble into the army and the army freaks out about the bitten chick and they lead her to quarantine where I think she exploded or something. Anyway they continue to go for the chick who was calling about bleeding like 20 some odd years ago... The apartment she lives in is of course collapsed into another and is actually leaning against it. That does not deter them. They go up the building being leaned on and cross over onto the roof of the leaning building she lives in. She is still in the apartment and alive.. even though she has a random metal bar through her. I am not sure how the re-bar ended up in the middle of her floor for her to fall through but it was awfully convenient. They pull her off it and she is all wobbly but like a minute later she is fine. She can run like the wind somehow... I guess that's what happens when you impale yourself and bleed for hours.... So yeah they run back and somehow meet up with the army again. One person gets out by helicopter then the other 3 get on another one that gets totally slapped by the stupid cg monster like a cat swats a toy. All three live through the crash landing but the pilots don't. Then finally the camera guy dies and then a few minutes later so does the girl they rescued and the guy who slept with her. That's it, that is the end. We have no idea what happened to the monster or the person who got on the first helicopter. We don't know anything at all except that I just paid money to see a dumb poorly shot movie. I don't know where the monster came from or if the last attack actually killed it but hey at least those characters finally died.

The camera guy did say a few funny things but they were not worth seeing this movie for. Oh my goodness this movie was bad! So bad that I decided to walk into another movie without paying. I figured 6.75 for the movie and 8 bucks for popcorn and soda meant that I deserved another movie.... in fact I think everyone deserves more free movies. Anyway that movie was much better but that will be another review.

My Weekend and the return to The Wing Stop

Well it was a good ending to a bad week. It was potluck day at work and I brought chocolate and Chex mix. There was a lot of good stuff there too eat and I did so... all freaking day actually. Man.... I was full when I left work. I was so busy eating and playing phone tag with a person calling about my resume that I only took about 2/3 of the calls I normally take. My company set up an interview with me for a sales position (sales is not getting the boot just service). That will happen Wednesday and so will a screening interview for another position at another company. So Wednesday is a big day. I ended the night by eating Thai food. It was great.

Saturday was interesting I went out to eat at Old Chicago. I had the beer I had wanted the night before and their pizza rolls and antipasto salad. Then I headed down and watched a movie and then another one. I will review them both but not in this entry. To end the day I went back to the Wing Stop. I ordered the Hawaiian and Cajun flavored wings. I skipped the beer and had them give me non-seasoned fries. I kind of liked the Cajun, I would have done it a little different but I did enjoy eating them so that is what counts. The Hawaiian was a little disappointing. I was not sure what it was that I expected but it was not what I ate. They weren't bad just I had expected like a pineapple flavor or something but it wasn't really that. It was like a weak teriyaki and barbeque combination. The fries without the seasoning was quite a bit of an improvement. I was able to control the salt. I think I want to try the Garlic Parmesan flavor... I am sure it will be like the lemon pepper and be way too salty which is why I skipped it. So far I am not sold on the whole idea of the Wing Stop but I am not completely against it. I will probably go there again if I see a movie at the theater but I am not going there only to have the wings.

Today I went to the Grove and I read a bunch of poetry, some was good and but a lot were bad. Right now I am watching Football and rooting for Green Bay... I hate Eli with a passion. Anyway I think I will start the reviews for the movies I saw.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Mo' Drama

Well it seems odd to say that this week has been much worse then last week.... unfortunately there is no way that it wasn't. Wednesday we learned the company is letting a lot of people go in call centers in other states. There goal is too move all service into a few main centers and not have so many centers. A lot of people found out Wednesday that they will be out of a job soon. Let me tell you that even with 5 months notice, losing your job sucks. The horrible thing is I understand why they are doing it. If you can pay less money and still provide service you have to provide why wouldn't you. So what will happen is service level may drop for a while as the new employees learn how to do the job and the old employees that are jobless soon lose motivation. Plus change sends ripples as I was reminded during the last few days when I spoke to agents that call from the field for help. Some have lost faith and worry that the company has forgotten that they provide a service in exchange for money and to continue to grow you need to provide competent and quality service. Word of mouth can make you big.... of course so can good marketing. So trust is lost but you are hiring and building a new community of service people so it will just be a little while until you get completely on track. The new employees will be far more malleable and they will be considerably cheaper then the 20 to 30 year career workers you just left behind. Then you just built in a place that costs less to do business in and perhaps the starting wage is also lower (I can not confirm this since I am not applying for a job in these cities because the cost to do business is low for a reason.... it's a crap place to live). The only potential losers are your customers while the change over is in progress and the new hires get up to speed.

I think in a job like I do paying more intelligent people to do the work is good because they can think and be creative. Sometimes a problems solution requires you to look through the lines and see the reality of the situation. What is getting a disputed 5 bucks versus keeping a customer? So why would you be looking for the way to save money on employees? You get what you pay for right? The people that are not able to see past the rules will always follow the rules. Which is good but also very dangerous. So maybe there is an even steeper learning curve because you are saving money on your work force. You could always give out super long walking papers which will help you continue to train your new window lickers. Intelligent people will leave you one day anyway, the new breed of employees just use the company back. Get what you can and jump to a better gig when you can. So it's a big win right?

Anyway in other news my roommate is having all kinds of drama.... his son is moving across the country without him. So it has been super stressful at home too. It isn't fair to either my roommate or the little guy to separate them even more but what can you do but hope it ends up being just for the short term. Until his son leaves I told my roommate to make sure he took the little guy as much as he could. I will help as much as I can. This is way more important then anything I have going at the moment.

So send us some good vibes up here in the NorthWest... We need it. Stress is at a high level right now and we could always use the love.

Monday, January 14, 2008

The Weekend in summary

Orientation for school was all about what we needed to do to become a teacher. We need to take several tests that the school districts require: the cbest, the orela and a few praxis tests. The praxis tests are for middle school and high school teachers and I would think that since I want to be an elementary teacher I could skip all of that. The reality is my degree is for elementary and middle so I think I do have to take them. All of these tests cost money of course and they need to be done before I can student teach. That is at the end of 2009 but there are not that many test days so I need to get on it so I am signing up for the next test which is in April. Then we found out we need to get fingerprinted. Which means 15 bucks for the fingerprinting and then we need to pay 62 bucks for the processing. Yeah..... I have been fingerprinted like 12 times for insurance but none of that matters. So yeah I am real excited about getting fingerprinted again.... Anyway I have to because for whatever reason fingerprints aren't shared anywhere for any reason. Maybe my fingerprints change depending on the reason for the fingerprint being done. Like maybe my fingerprints for the California insurance license look different then the Oregon License. So naturally teacher fingerprints will look different then insurance license fingerprints. Right? Anyway that has nothing to do with what we do at school... all that is separate. So it will cost a bundle of money! Yay! At least there were free snacks at orientation.

I headed over to California Pizza Kitchen after the orientation meeting because I had a gift card. I ordered a sangria and a barbecue chicken pizza then finished it off by an alcoholic coffee. This was a decent meal and would have been satisfying if that stupid gift card had not expired. Of course they did not believe that it was valid or that I never had used it and advised I ask the person who gave it to me to bring in the reciept. Well... that would be fine if the person who gave it to me had bought the damn thing. So anyway I paid for the meal that I had only ordered because I thought I would not have to pay for it. Had I known I would be out of pocket on this one I would have went to Fuddruckers which was up the road from the place. It would have been much more satisfying.... next time. I went home and watched Old School until I recieved a call to go out. I went to a bar down town and played pool and had a few beverages. It was a nice evening.

I slept in on Sunday and when I got up I had a nice surprise. The sun came out on Sunday..... which seems appropriate considering the name of the day. I wandered through the neighborhood and soaked up some sun. I ended my walkabout with a stop at the Daily (a great coffee, restaurant, market near me) for a cappuccino and then when I got home I hopped in the car to do some shopping for lunches. I ended the night by watching the premiere of the terminator show and the new family guy show. It was the most boring Family Guy episode ever...

Saturday, January 12, 2008

How am I doing? No! How are you doing!?

Some people asked me how I was doing yesterday. Well, I don't know, I was off and had nothing that I really needed to do. So I guess I was doing pretty good and I still am. I know now that I have to get another job by or before June. I can look and still be a little picky since I am employed. Still I have to look for a job and I am close to getting motivated. You may be thinking "Wait... You aren't motivated yet?" Well yes and no. I am ready to have a new job that is not disappearing in June but I am not ready to start the hunt... I hate the hunt. I hate that you send out a bunch of resumes and you might get a call back on 1 but the other 20 just kind of go no where. It seems like if you run an ad you should at least tell people to buzz off. I hate interviewing because it is more about wording the answer that they want to hear in the best possible way rather then finding out if you are the right fit for the job. When anyone is honest they don't get the job. Try answering "To pay the bills" when they ask why you applied for a job with their company and see how far you get. Anyway I am getting myself mentally prepared for the hunt and I hope to be sending out the resume by next week. The resume is already up to date from a few months ago when we thought we were toast then. I should have followed my instincts and kept looking but it all comes back to hating the hunt.

Anyway I was off yesterday so I watched 3:10 to Yuma. It was pretty violent but I liked it. I don't really feel like reviewing it since my mind was divided yesterday between wondering 'now what?' and viewing the film. So some scenes I was thinking 'what is going on?' but I am not sure if that was the movie or just me. Then I headed to a meeting for the Grove Review. Where I joined the small group of people for a beer and we talked about things that need to get done and whatever else floated through our heads. It was a nice break from worrying about my job. I exchanged my stack for a new stack of poetry to be read and we parted ways. I went South to a place called Philadelphia's and had a philly cheese steak and an Independence IPA. I was happy and contented so I headed back to my apartment where the evening plan I had been hoping would go from a maybe to a definite got washed down the drain so I watched TV all night instead. This morning I got up and decided to fill you in on how I was doing and tell you I had a good day yesterday. When I am done writing and editing this blog entry I am going to shower and then head to my orientation for school at 1:30.

Hope you all have a good weekend.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Jobs are awesome!

As I started out the new year I was looking forward to getting back to school and feeling pretty nervous about that endeavor. I was wondering how much free time I would have and how I would pay for school while I was in and how to pay the loans when I was done. I even worried about the student teaching that ends the degree program. I was worried about my schooling and I was only focused on that. Maybe that was why I was blind sighted today by a new development. I might have been unprepared for it but I was not surprised when it happened. In fact there are several blog entries regarding the events of today possibly happening in the future. I was just hoping for it wouldn't and I would have enough time to get nearly through school.....

Today at work they pulled everyone off the phones at work and let us know our jobs would be over by June. Yeah we are being laid off.... Like I said I was not without suspicions but I had let my guard down and was envisioning working with this company to see me through the next 2 years of schooling. I just wanted something I was already used to and I wanted to have one thing on my resume that showed long term ability. I also had been watching them get everyone trained to take calls on the new system and thought that with the cost of training they were making a long term commitment... maybe a year or even two. And I may have been feeling a little trapped lately but I could see a light at the end of the tunnel. I could see daylight and I felt like it was do-able. Now the tiny cave has been bombed and all I see is daylight but now I see a huge hole in the floor with a bunch of sharp jagged edges waiting below....

Hahaha yeah. So was I just saying the cave was too dark for me to see the dangerous hole or is the hole a new development as a result of the bombing? I don't know I only come up with the words, I can not possibly be expected to define them or explain their true meaning. Or can I?

Anyway so I have been trying to figure out the answer to "Now what?" I have several ideas but not very many of them are ones I am overly excited about. I did not want to be back on the job hunt circuit, I hate looking for jobs because interviews suck! I think at the moment I am just going to spend tomorrow (I luckily had it as a planned day off) and the weekend dealing with school and regrouping to go back to work and resume my normal job on Monday. That is my temporary plan.... I am just going to hang in there for now. In case you are reading this Mark... See you Monday :)

I may hang in there until June and that is an idea I am completely ok with. However I have my ear to the streets and I am not letting anything pass without picking it up shaking it and seeing what it has to offer.

The day started off interestingly, I had a cup of coffee from home that I had poured too much flavored creamer into and it was so sweet it made my stomach turn. So I was not drinking the stupid thing and I needed it because I was exhausted. So I was taking calls and handling a lot of follow up work when it got near my break time. I told a co-worker that I wanted to join him on his daily coffee jaunt and we headed down the street to a little coffee shop in a nearby office building. We were bs'n about school (he's in school too) and what not as we made the trip. When we walked back in we saw an empty call center.... my co-worker turned to me and said I think we just got laid off. We were approached and told by a supervisor to join everyone in a large conference room. When we entered, the meeting was going on already and a big wig I had never seen before was talking to everyone. He turned it over to someone I was familiar with and she laid it out for us. Sorta. They told us in a lot of words that we were toast and then assured us it was not due to our performance. Well yeah I could have told them that... If it was due to performance we would be guaranteed our jobs! Yeah I am saying there are a lot of people in other locations that tend to make my work harder... I am told this by the customers and other agents in local offices on a weekly basis. I do try to do what is right for the customers I deal with and the company as well. In fact just yesterday I bent over backwards to help a guy out and he said I was a great reason he would recommend the company to friends... Hey dude they just got rid of a reason! Anyway they fed us lunch (which was nice)and I had my 'shut up and deal' roast beef sandwich meal. I ended up not feeling very hungry and ate a few bites and the cookie oly which let me know I was stressed. I was not sure I was but apparently I am since my tummy is still upset. I did not take another call for the rest of the day. I was not sure I could provide the customers with the service they may or may not deserve and like I said I want to have the option of staying here until the end. So I made a decision to just call it a day on helping people. I was hanging in there at work for a meeting they promised in the big meeting and then that meeting had no answers except that they will get answers for us later. It was a great thing to stick around for... and that is definitely sarcasm. When I finally got home I crashed. It had been one hell of a day.

Saturday, January 05, 2008

Hellos from the works!

Well I can't say that the callers at work have been having a very happy new year. They are all pissed off... On the second I just figured it was still the hangover but today, Saturday the 5th, I find that harder to believe. In reality what I think it is is that people are broke after the holidays and then they recieve their bills and they call in and take out their aggression on whoever is lucky enough to get their call. Not everyone is mean and nasty but enough of them are that the days seem to be longer then normal. Anyway I am at work and the phone won't stop ringing and everyone wants to grill me about something that is costing them a dollar more then it did the year before and I am feeling tired. So I decided to blog about the weekon my 15 minute break....

I made dinner on Thursday and for those that know I mean I chopped, marinated and cooked. I made beef stir fry and it was pretty darn tasty. My roommate liked it too. I had red, yellow and orange bell peppers, carrots, broccoli, onion and beef (I was planning on chicken but the chicken would have cost more for less meat, which is strange) Anyway it was fun to cook again since it has been so long. I had fallen into the trap of heating and eating. Whether it be a microwaveable burrito or something from a can I was not doing much besides adding water.... So I decided to mix it up a bit and get back to cooking more. I think I need to do burritos next... yay burritos!

I am procrastinating on my novel. It is halfway edited and half of the edited part is retyped but I am hung up exactly where I was when I was writing. I am not sure where I took it is where it wanted to go so I am debating a major rewrite of the last half. I think it would work better and get me back closer to familiar territory if I did the rewrite I am considering.... but it will take some work and I am feeling lazy. Well I have to get back to the phones....

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

A Rambling Review of I Am Legend

Shortly after the hair cut and the wings (see the review of The Wing Spot below) I headed over to the theater. I went and saw 'I Am Legend'. Now this was a movie I wanted to see. When I saw the preview at the theater I said "Wow.... I want to see that!" My roommate was saying "I do not want to see that" at the exact same time. So I knew this would be a movie I would see by myself. Since he had plans with the small fry I figured this would be a good time to see it. Well that is all the introduction I feel like putting out there so with out further ado here is the Rambling Review of I Am Legend.

This is a total spoiler warning!
If you do not want the movie spoiled just skip this paragraph and begin reading at the next bold sentence. This spoiler does not include the ending, just a lot of plot details....

In the near future the cure for cancer is found. It cures every one all the time.... unfortunately it's side affects include turning you into a man eating monster. Within 3 years the world has been decimated. We meet our compelling protagonist, Robert Neville, in an urban waste land. It's New York City like you have never seen it and it is completely empty. He is the only human left and his only counterpart is a dog named Sam. Robert Neville is a scientist/doctor that worked for the army and had at one time been charged with the task to figure out how to reverse the damage the cure had wrought. They are regulated by Robert's watch and it seems he spends part of the day hunting deer with a automatic rifle and a Ford Mustang with the window sticker still in the car window. He is about to get one when a lion jumps out scaring me half to death and chomps down on the deers neck. His wrist watch goes off and he glances at the sky to see it setting and he tells Sam it is time to go as they slowly back up. He gets to his home and does a lot to cover the signs he lives there, he eats dinner and then washes the dog when his watch goes off again he closes all the windows with metal shutters and bars the doors. You see him in the fetal position in the tub as the scary sounds of the night increase. The next day he gets up goes to his lab where he continues to try and cure the plague and sees a promising development in one of his rats, then he works out and sets out for another day. He spends part of the day sitting on a pier waiting for survivors that he does not really believe will come, another part of the day checking out apartments for usable supplies, and the other getting another movie from the rental place. As he walks in he talks to the mannequins he has set up outside the store and he interacts with the mannequins in the store. He deposits some movies and grabs a few while looking over at a female mannequin that he seems to be interested in. She seems more interested in the adult dvd section. He asks the mannequin store clerk who she is but of course he is met with silence, he bids the mannequin a good day as he says he grabbed a movie from the middle of the G section. He heads out to pick corn where he has a conversation with his dog Sam and somehow ends up promising to talk to the mannequin the next day. He heads home and we flash to the next day where he is once again hunting for deer and they are tracking it when it darts off into a dark building. Sam follows it in and ends up being trapped inside. Robert goes after the dog and sees a nest of human like monsters. He rescues the dog unhurt luckily but he goes back to capture one of them so he can try out his new serum he had seen succeed with the rats. It does not work but we find out more about the virus. Apparently it is airborne for humans but he is immune, the other way to get it is a bite and that is how dogs can get it. Meanwhile as this is all going on he has been having flashbacks where we learn he was the army's top scientist and heralded as the savior from the virus. We also learn he had a wife and a daughter. We see Manhattan's last days as a thriving mecca as it is deemed a quarantine zone and he rushes to get his wife and daughter off the island. He is staying because it is also ground zero and he is determined to see the cure through. The disease becomes airborne and decimates the world's human population but he still is searching for the cure now years later. A bad thing is he has become a person of interest for a leader type for the people monsters. He takes one of the mannequins from outside the movie store to another spot. This catches Robert's eye and he goes totally nuts and falls right into the exact trap he had set for the person he had captured. He is hanging suspended and out cold while the dog is barking and his watch is going off. When he wakes up the sun is going down. He cuts himself free and ends up getting hurt further. As the sun continues to set the head monster dude comes out with three huge mutated dogs. He is trying to get out of there and back to his car as the dogs pounce. His dog Sam is battling as hard as it can as he finally grabs the gun and starts firing at the Hell hounds. He manages to take the three down but not before his dog gets bitten. He takes her home but loses her to the disease. Mad with grief he goes out but without the watch regulating him. He talks to the mannequin chick like he promised Sam but of course she never speaks back and he is begging her to speak, it was crazy. Then he is sitting on the pier as night comes and you are like 'What are you doing WILL!' but then as the monsters are advancing a car comes blaring into them and he is in the car getting revenge. The battle is intense and he almost dies but a smart, healthy and more importantly real woman finds him and rescues him. She takes him back to his house as we see in a flashback the fate of his wife and child..... The woman brings with her hope that he does not believe in because he is a man of belief and not hope or faith. Will she lead him to salvation? Will he let her?

My 2 cents...
I liked this movie. I was engaged and watching all these happenings in horrified awe as the magnitude that the movie takes on is displayed. A completely deteriorating Times Square? Fantastic really. There is a scene where he is practicing his golf swing on top of a Blackbird spy plane that is on top of an air craft carrier. The fabled bridges are in ruins cutting the island off from the rest of the world but unfortunately not able to stem the plague's fearsome spread. He is in a world all by himself and it is compelling. I really liked this movie and I enjoyed his moments of psychosis as he talks to the mannequins. I would totally recommend this movie. It was very interesting and Will Smith did a great job.... again.

One thing I would caution you is if you are like the idiot behind me who kept whispering super loudly and making disgusted noises when Will was talking to the mannequins.... never ever ever run in to me again because I will totally end you! I even said audibly 'Shut up you idiot!' which is something I never do. Well mostly. Of course you paid it no mind. You should be grateful no one has bought me a tazer or you would have been tazed the entire movie.... I HATE YOU, YOU MORON!

A Rambling Review of The Wing Stop

First off I have to say Happy New Year! Hope 2008 is kind to you.

Last night I was without a plan and without a person to hang out with. Everyone was already busy, like my roommate who spent his night with his son. So I just decided to go out. I headed to a place near the movie theater I had found a movie to watch. The place was called The Wing Stop and I had been inundated by commercials on the cable channels and wanted to give them a shot. I stopped off to get a haircut(it was right next door) and then walked in to The Wing Stop. It was in a small spot. It was mostly kitchen but it had about 10 tables and 2 TV's. One of which was playing the Blazer game.... unfortunately their win streak ended as I ate wings and sipped a beer. Anyway The Wing Stop seems to have spread across the US pretty quickly as they have locations in 28 states. It has Troy Aikman on the web site saying these are the best wings he has ever had in his life. So far no one has asked him if these were the best wings he has had in anyone else's life.... Yeah.

So anyway they boast 9 flavors but while I was there I heard of 2 other flavors.... Insanity and medium, I did not order either of them. The flavors on the menu include Atomic, Cajun, Original Hot, Mild, Lemon Pepper, Garlic Parmesan, Hickory Smoked Barbeque, Hawaiian and Teriyaki. So I was in there deciding what to get and the guy suggested the meal deal. It had 10 wings that you could choose two flavors, seasoned fries and a beverage for 9 bucks. They have beer though.... so I upgraded the combo from a soda to a beer for 10.50. They had 4 beers on tap and 3 of them were good options and then they have a big cooler of even more options. I chose a Lagunitas IPA and the wing flavors of Original Hot and Lemon Pepper. As I sipped my beer and watched the Blazer game they started frying those wings up, which is cool that they don't have it pre-made. Soon I was presented with my wings and fries and I dug in. The first thing I noticed was I did not like the seasoning on the fries. If I was to do fries again, they were the kind with the tater skins still on and they should have been awesome, I would have them skip the seasoning and salt them myself. The Lemon Pepper Wings were good but they were too salty. If they would cut the salt by a lot the flavor is nice and could be an outstanding wing option. The Original Hot was the greatest disappointment. There was something about it that I did not like and it wasn't that they were hot because they were not. As far as the wings go the level they were cooked too were awesome. I am interested enough in them to go and try again but those 2 flavors are off my list. I think I may do the Cajun and Hawaiian next time. So would I recommend it.... well I am not sure but I am willing to try it again. Let me know if you go and find out I am wrong or find the wing flavor I have to have....

Click The Wing Stop to go to their website.