Christmas Irony: Busker in Johnson Square playing Little Drummer Boy…on the flute. I love this place.
Jerry Garcia. Best. Cat. Ever.
Send your love Jerry’s way. Today is not going to be easy.
Scene: Yesterday morning. A-Team* and I are near her cubicle discussing a very large case.
The Idiocy: A-Team mentions that the Casemap and Depositions folder for this case are in order but the rest is a mess. I then reminded her that we had also created a Master Folder of Bates-Stamped Documents. Unfortunately for me, it came out like this, “Yeah, but don’t forget we still have that Master-Bates-Folder.” It was at least a thirty seconds before either of us realized what I had just said. Queue the laughter. Good times.
*Fictionalized name used to protect the innocent.
I went to do some emergency panty hose repair yesterday with a glue stick I keep in my desk for such purposes (and you know, for the occasional need to actually glue papers). I opened it and found this:
Eww! I’ve never heard of glue molding ever. Have you?
Oh Elmers! Bring it back to the USA. Can’t trust those Chinese glue chemists.
October, as usual, proved to be a very busy month, and November is starting out the same. I’m not complaining, but it’s left me with little time to keep up on writing and sharing the minutia of my life.
First, let’s backtrack all the way back to my birthday dinner. This year was one of the best yet, not only for the quality of the food, but because it provided Mike with a whole new level of challenge. I opted for a strip steak (quality ribeyes not being available). The challenge for Mike was that it was to be sous-vide. As expected, he met the challenge, successfully made a sous-vide machine, and we feasted on some of the best, and most accurately cooked, medium rare steaks ever tasted. I should add that after we removed the steaks from their bags, we used our handy blowtorch to fire the sides of the steak, giving it the needed grilled char. Thanks Mike! I have no idea what is in store for next year.
The rest of the month included Mike’s birthday, which he intentionally keeps low key (which continues to befuddle me). Then it was prepping for a camping trip.
Earlier this week, Mike and I returned from said camping trip at the Stephen C. Foster State Park in the Okeefenokee Swamp. It was a short, but wonderful journey. I highly recommend going – if you can find it. It is extremely remote. GPS doesn’t work so well out in the swamplands. Learn to read maps, kids. It may be your only back up.
The wildlife was in abundance, but bugs at a minimum since it was cooler. It struck me at some point on the trip that the last time we camped in a swamp (Big Cypress, Y2K New Years), we returned home and vowed to move south, which we then did. Having been living in the coastal south now for so long, I’m wise enough to know it is the bugs in the summer that would prevent me from running away to live in the swamps. I can say it has inspired me to pick up my mandolin again (it’s been an embarrassingly long time since I’ve bothered with it). The reality is that I can’t bring my bass rig to a campsite. Well, at least not without a ridiculous amount of effort. New strings are on their way.
The highlight of the trip was our self-navigated boat trip into the swamp. Feel free to check out our pics from that boat trip. We journeyed about ten miles in, in one direction. It was pretty intense at times with the waterway being only slighter larger than our low riding john boat and alligators on all sides, who like to plunge into the water at the boat as you near them. I wish we were able to take more photos of the birds, but they were so fast. The large birds were in abundance, though – storks, cranes, herons, hawks. Overall, a fantastic trip, and one I would like to make again, maybe next fall.
Upon my return to civilization, I did what any modern American would do, and checked my email. In the three days I was away, Facebook had emailed me six times to let me know that it had been awhile since I last logged in and there were notifications and messages waiting for me. Twice a day for three days? Really, Facebook? Holy crap, kick it down a notch you needy baby. Of course, I’ve turned this into an experiment and have not logged into FB for over a week. I’m still getting about two messages a day. I assume eventually FB will start threatening to leave me, or suspend me, or whatever is the equivalent of a person-needy social media website break up. I won’t let it get that far. I won’t be able to resist cross-posting this very post to my wall. FB will be pleased it has lured me back. Unfortunately, I now have to go through the bother of figuring out FB’s intentionally confusing preference settings in order to not receive anymore of these notifications. I do refuse to be harassed by a bot.
Next up, Thanksgiving prep. The grandest meal of the year. Planning begins next week.
Stealing away a quick moment while Mike fields the annual, expected telephone calls, I bring you this from the sweet, sunny South –
The Secretary of State of Georgia has announced the certified write-in candidates for this election. Not much to see there, except JEHOVAH GOD CAMPAIGN FOR CHANCEY ANDRELL PORTER FOR GOVERNOR OF GEORGIA U.S.A 2014. Be sure to check out the actual URL of that link, too. Come to think of it, I probably shouldn’t be linking to that site. Well, enjoy it for as long as you can stand it.
Yesterday we concluded a lost-cat story with a very happy ending. It started last Thursday when a beautiful Maine Coon cat followed Mike home. She was a little hungry but otherwise in great shape. She was well groomed, well fed, and well socialized. It was clear from the start she was not a stray, and likely someone’s beloved house pet.
She spent the weekend coming and going to our house and a neighbor’s. We asked around trying to figure out whose cat she was. We searched Craigslist and all the usual online places where people post about missing pets. Finally, yesterday, Mike was able to scoop her up and bring her to our wonderful vet, Brian Mulvey’s office to scan her for a tracking chip. BINGO! She had one. The fantastic staff at Savannah Veterinary Medical Center connected us with the kitty’s owner, and in the meantime, we learned her name – Charlotte.
Last evening, we had the great fortune of reuniting Charlotte with her stunned owners. Turns out, they had recently moved into our neighborhood and Charlotte escaped on the third day there. While she really didn’t get too far away from her home (about 3 blocks at most), she simply had no idea how to get back home. Charlotte’s family seemed delighted to have her back. It was and still is a great feeling knowing they are all together again.
Get your pets chipped! It’s an amazing technology.
It’s birthday month at The Gull Reef Club. I can’t imagine a better way to celebrate than with 50 lbs. of the exact same popcorn kernels as Garrett (thanks, Pop!), 12 lbs. of high quality roasted San Francisco Bay Coffee (French Roast, Rain Forest Blend, and 2 Colombian), nearly 3 lbs. of Hoosier Hill dehydrated cheddar, and enough coconut oil to make all the cheese sauce we need for the popcorn. Run on sentence of the year, right there.
If you’re in the area and want some popcorn or coffee, you know where to go. Oh yeah, and gumbo tomorrow during the Bears game. I love October. Happy Birthday to us!
No more being maudlin. The Chicago Blackhawks open their season tonight, and it’s time to get ready. Which, for The Gull Reef Club, means playlists! Music and hockey are like Forest & Jenny – peas and carrots.
Today’s set list, so far, has included only obvious choices:
Juke Box Hero, Foreigner (ok, so maybe I might like this song now. It’s grown on me. It’s not just a joke anymore).
Chelsea Dagger, The Fratellis – because, duh. If you don’t get this you never will.
I’m Your Captain, Grand Funk Railroad – I like songs that mention captains. For Toewsey, you know?
Ride Captain Ride, Blues Image. Another captain song.
Before the game, I hope to squeeze in:
Highway Man Johnny Cash, with Willie Nelson, Waylon Jennings & Kris Kristofferson – the manliest song ever, for the manliest game ever. Mmmmm, manly…
The Walker, Fitz and the Tantrums. Although, it sucks this song is now being used in both a Reebok ad and one for some ugly-animated kids movie. I hate when my favorites go commercial (On the same subject – note to Bank of America – stop using Shambala and the Tide is High, you are destroying the classics!).
I’m certain there will be others – especially if you suggest them. Bobby? I’m looking in your direction, brother.
Go Hawks Go!
Distraught, and really mostly unable to write – we have lost our Stella Blue. She went peacefully, and seemingly without pain. We will bury her near one of her favorite spots in the yard tomorrow. I already miss my tiny ninja more than words can express. I will be forever grateful she was part our lives as long as she was.
There’s nothing you can hold
for very long
And when you hear that song
come crying like the wind
it seems like all this life
was just a dream
SPAM, while mostly annoying (hence that third letter in the acronym), can sometimes provide sparks of humor, albeit confusing.
Somehow, I started getting SPAM to my work email for bidding on construction jobs, which in my line of work, is not all that odd. The offers actually looked legit and were getting past the spam filter, but everything was being addressed as “Dear Test”. I opted to email the company back and ask if I could be removed as their test account. I’ve not received another email from them since then. Then, just yesterday, I get another construction bid offer from a totally different company to my personal email address. This time to bid on building a $1m house in Deerfield, IL. Huh? Why are these construction companies following me around the internet?!?
Two other SPAM I’ve received recently are more typical, but funny because of their use of the English language. One came from someone claiming to be in Egypt and in need of smuggling some money to me (the modern twist on the old 419 scams). This email contained this little gem, “I send you so many mails but all prove abortive.” Abortive, eh?
The other I received, said:
“Dear Apple Customer,
We detected several attempts to log in your account. Actually, your account has been frozen.”
I love how this spammer is REALLY trying hard to sound like an American by throwing that ‘actually’ in there. Too bad it was SO out of place. Oh yeah, and I’ve never owned an Apple product in my life. I ain’t no 1%er.
In an on-going effort to manage stress, I am always looking to add to my cache of relaxation techniques. My primary methods these days include playing/listening to music, biking, history-themed research projects, and what you’re seeing here – writing. Sometimes these don’t always work, though. Hence, I reach out to you my dear Beachcombers, and ask: what do you do to reduce stress?
If you’re keeping score, please note that I am already discounting running and drinking (alcohol, that is). I don’t do either, ever – on purpose anyway. I suppose would run if being chased, and would drink if it were spiked without my knowledge, but if I have a choice – no to both of those.
Thanks for your input, friends. You guys mean a lot to me (and certainly help reduce stress!)
Cool weather means cinnamon. What better way to indulge than a little, er large, struesselkuchen? Never tried this recipe, and I’m still learning my way around the bundt pan (though, truly, there’s not a lot to learn but grease, grease, grease that pan). I anticipate it will be pretty good. Especially with some hot cider.
Woke up with Juke Box Hero in my head. That can only mean one thing…hockey season is less than two weeks away. For anyone left wondering, no, I have never heard back from the Blackhawks on why they play this song so often. I’ll keep you posted on any developments.
He’s just a juke box hero, aah aah aah
Juke box (stars) hero, (stars, stars) juke box hero, (stars, stars)
A missed opportunity to make a joke is a sin; especially if you subscribe to the idea that ‘I may not know if god exists, but if s/he does, s/he thinks I am funny- very, very funny’.
Such sin occurred yesterday while I was in the shower, tuned to GD Radio. During a prolonged space jam (that’s redundant), some guys come on with an ad to promote their show. As part of the ad, one of the dudes mentions that they are running a ticket give away for the Wailers in Hartford.
Hockey fans, I know you already see the joke coming.
No where in this ad do they ever say anything along the lines of, “For one night only! The Wailers back in Hartford!” What a failed opportunity. Stupid hippies. Sinners.
Oh internet, I love you so. While doing some online window, er monitor, shopping yesterday, I ran across this:
Inflatable Cowboy Hat kid party favor dress up prop pool beach blow up Toy white. Wow. Despite that incredible description, there is absolutely no explanation for the Israeli flags. I’m a little confused but love is confusing. I DO love you, internet. I love you, and all the little gems you have hidden away for me to find.
No, I didn’t buy it. I did come really close to buying these: Antique Victorian Steampunk Cyber Goggles Glasses Welding Gothic Cosplay Copper, but I couldn’t bring myself to drop the $7. Channeling the ghost of Jack Benny!
Welcome to the best season of the year, autumn. A friend linked me to this last year or maybe in 2012, and is now my go-to read for this festive time of year. Those of you delicate flowers may want to avoid this; you won’t be able to handle it. It is, after all, decorative gourd season.
It’s Decorative Gourd Season, Motherfuckers, Colin Nissan.
Guerrilla bathroom art update! As you may recall, we have a little rogue art/physics installation in our ladies’ restroom, started by yours truly (See: Balancing Act). I was overjoyed when I learned someone was joining me in my kitch-efforts to make potty time a wee bit more fun (wee bit, oh yeah, I’m punny, too).
Today, my joy over said bathroom art has been extended exponentially. It started this afternoon when, once again, my mystery-(p)artner, or possibly a third artist, added to the installation by including a second, empty tissue box. This new box was turned on its tall side so it can serve as a pedestal for the cup holder and original, full tissue box to sit. Notably, this new box does not appear to be of office origin; meaning, someone may have brought this box from home to include it. That’s an artist who cares right there.
Art time wasn’t over yet, however. Toward the end of the day, this mystery artist or now multiple artists, has/have added a roll of toilet paper to the mix. It is growing into a tower. It’s alive! It’s so intriguing we may have to arrange a showing.
I even broke my rule about devices in public bathrooms to snag you all a pic. Another round of thank-yous to our office artists. You really brighten up the place!
Viva Arte de Baño!
There’s a news article circulating today that says that Facebook is kicking drag Queens off their site because they won’t use their legal names when signing up, a violation of the FB rules. (See: Drag Queens Say They Will “Mobilize” if Facebook Doesn’t Change “Real Names” Policy, NBC).
I had this issue with FB in 2009 (See: Faceblock. I signed up as “Jaime LastName”. Shortly thereafter, I got booted for “compromising the integrity” of Facebook. Ok, go ahead. I’ll give you a moment to collect yourself from the floor where you fell off your chair laughing…..
Seriously, the idea of Facebook earning any sort of ‘integrity’ stemming from how people identify themselves online is laughable. I seem to have defeated this ‘rule’ by signing up with a slightly more clever fake last name, Caralibra, which if you haven’t noticed already is bastardized Spanish for ‘Facebook’ (it’s just that I’m a Libra so I took a few liberties). Combined with my very masculine, latino first name this fake has kept me on FB for five years now. In light of what is going down with the Queens, I wonder if I’m on the chopping block.
I’m on the Queens side on this one, but I also recognize that FB has the right to make up whatever stupid ass rules they want. Eventually, we will all give up our FB pages and replace them with the next, cool thing. Looking forward to that day. Until then, I remain, Jaime Caralibra.
In the ladies restroom, there is a small, circular cup holder that has been absent of cups almost the entire time I’ve been employed here. It has a hole on the top where the cups are to be inserted with a spring inside to push up new cups up as they are used. Also in the ladies restroom is a box of tissue, which actually does contain tissue. They both sit on a small table.
About two weeks ago, in one of my monkey-efforts to amuse myself, I balanced the box of tissue by one bottom corner in the hole on the holder where the cups are to be inserted, making a defacto, kitchy art installation…yeah, art. That’s it. The balancing act lasted a few days and the tissue box eventually fell down. I again balanced it sometime last week; again, for my own amusement. You know, physics is fun and all that. Gravity eventually took over a second time and the tissue box fell off the holder.
Today, I entered the ladies room and much to my surprise, and of course amusement, someone else has balanced the tissue box on the holder in the exact same way I did. Secret artist and physics fan, you are awesome. Keep it in balance, my friend.