Nothing to Say

Jul 21, 2002

Over the last couple of weeks, I feel like I’ve kind of gotten on a roll with
this blog thing. However, I’m getting the urge to write and am at a loss for
subjects. I have nothing in particular to share and nothing in particular to

A lot of that is probably because I’ve spent the last week either at work or
working at home. Last week we had what I’ve termed our “closet calamity”.
Basically, the shelves and clothes of our approximately eight foot walk in closet
came crashing down at about 2:30 last Sunday morning. The racket that
accompanied this was impressive, to say the least. I, being the comfy sleeper
I am, incorporated it nicely into whatever dream I was having — waking up
temporarily in a daze and looking to snuggle back into my pillows. My wife,
however, thought the world was ending.

At one time, our closet shelving consisted of a single piece of wood that streched
the entire length of the closet, with absolutely no supports in the middle.
In addition, this same piece of wood, which sported a metal hanger underneath,
took on the burden of all our hung clothing. Sturdy design? Let’s just say that
I don’t think the construction crew was entirely sober when they thought this
one up.

Regardless, we happily used it. The closet in our previous home was smaller
than small. It couldn’t fit all of Jenn’s clothes in it, much less
my own, and, when we bought the house, we could only imagine what we’d do with all
the new space. We were a bit too busy doing our happy closet dance to really take a
good look at the specs.

About a year ago, the closet gave us a warning. The shelving came down with a
bang for the ages, interrupting a perfectly good shower and basically scaring the
crap out of me. Being the not-so-handy man I am, I fixed it. It seemed that
the glues and nails that served as the shelf anchor, just didn’t cut it (someone,
somewhere just said “duh”). I reanchored everything and life continued.
A week ago, it sputtered its last breath and took a final dive, taking
bits of the closet walls along with it. For the record, my anchors held fast –
thank you very much – but the bad design finally caught up with it.

So what happened to my week? Well, a new house project happened, that’s what.
Trips to Home Depot and
Lowe’s, followed by painting, and finally some building.
Somewhere along the line, the project changed from “this closet needs to be fixed” to
“while we are doing the closet, let’s repaint and fix up the bedroom”.
I’m not sure when it happened but I bet the wife could tell you – the little sneak:)
I’ll have to consider this as I install our newly purchased porch light out front.

In any case, that has been my week. The closet is nearly complete and, as I mentioned,
I really don’t have anything to say. Oh, well.

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4 wheels and a beach

Jul 12, 2002

Assateague Horses
While vacationing last week (yep, here comes a second vacation story), the wife
and I took our relatively new Xterra
for an adventure. More specifically, we took it on the exclusive off-road vehicle
beach on Assateague Island.
What a blast.

Wild ponies, other assorted wildlife, 13 miles of wide open beach, and
a Xterra fresh for its first four-wheeling experience is quite a mix indeed.
The little 4 wheel engage light was brightly shining on the dashboard. On my left,
the Atlantic Ocean threw wave after wave onto the sand from about twenty yards
away. To my right, sand dune after sand dune rose from the beach;
an occasional access trail, screaming for exploration, could be found between
them. Top it all off with the sights of wild horses making their way from place
to place and you have some of my most memorable experiences of my trip.

It’s funny, but I couldn’t help but feel like a member of an exclusive club.
No sports cars or family cars in sight, the special tools of the trade in the back
(which are a shovel, a piece of wood, and tow cable, for those who are interested),
and a proudly displayed, but rather expensive, OVR sticker on the front of the
truck helped solidify this feeling. My good old Trans Am couldn’t bring me
here; heck, it has trouble getting out of the driveway when it rains.

The only glaring fault of the island, from my perspective, is the bugs.
They have bugs that occasionally carry off a tourist just for the fun of it.
This is all the more worrisome when we factor in the fact that my wife is
incredibly allergic to mosquitoes; who, in a bit of irony, seem to flock
to her like she was the pied piper. I can hear the little critters now, “I have
been to Mosquito Jenn! It contained the nectar of the Gods!”

Unfortunately for the famous mosquitoes of the island, “Mosquito Jenn” was safely
withheld from them – try as they might, the glass of the windows protected us from their constant dive bombing attacks. However, they can take solace in one fact: the
OVR pass lasts for a year. We’ll be back.

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Racing the Magazine

Jul 6, 2002

Last week, the wife and I took a vacation with our assorted in-laws to
Ocean City.
As far as vacations go, I’m quite pleased. Lots of relaxation
with bits of fun mixed in for good measure. Luckily, the week gave me one
amusing story (at least to me) to relate.

See, one of my favorite pastimes on vacation is reading. I usually bring a couple
of books with me as well as a magazine or two. This vacation was no different.
I had brought a couple of novels, among them
Good Omens
and the
first Harry Potter
book (yep, I’m behind the curve on this one), and some gaming magazines.

So there I was, laying in lounge chair by the pool, soaking up the sun,
settling down for a good reading session with the latest issue of
Computer Gaming World
(I’m a game geek; I know it) when I noticed something
particular. The pages of the magazine were slowing coming apart. In fact, they
were coming apart one page at a time, almost in cadence with my reading.
I would read a page and the page a couple of sheets back would break free.

I should have known it was all going downhill when I noticed that I was leaving
blue fingerprints on the pages. Hmmm, I thought, I didn’t have any blueberries
today (as a side note, I’ve never had blueberries which made this conclusion all
the easier). It seems that the magazine was slowly melting in my hands; kind
of like M&Ms,
regardless of their little catch-phrase.

So what was I to do? That’s right. I needed to read the magazine before it
could fall apart on me. I would read a page and a page would fall out. I’d
read another and two more would fall out. Would I make it? Could the knight
slay the beast? What was in store for our hero next episode?

I’d like to say there was some drama involved, but there wasn’t. Any drama
that existed was found solely in my brain as I triumphantly completed the
issue in just time (so there sun, take that). The sad, crumpled mess of paper
that was once a magazine retired to the trash bin while I moved on to seek
other challenges. It seems that you do have to take life’s little victories where
you can find them.

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I love pizza. I don’t know exactly why I love it so but I do. In fact,
if I had to take just one food along with me to a desert island, pizza would
be it. Never mind that I don’t know why I’m going and why I actually get to
make this choice. Pizza would be going with me.

The funny thing is I don’t think I really care what this theorectical pizza
has on it, as long as there isn’t a vegetable in sight. Give me sausage, pepperoni,
ground beef, ham, bacon, extra cheese, or some combination thereof and I’m game.
You’d think that if I have to eat this thing for the rest of my life, I’d
be pretty choosy, but I’m not.

Maybe there is a life lesson to be learned here.

Some of you would undoubtably suggest that straight cheese is the way to go.
After all, you better go the safe route and stick with something normal and simple.
There may some truth to that. However, wouldn’t you want something to loosen up
all that cheese you’ll be eating, maybe even something spicy? Others may suggest
a pizza with everything on it. Pick off the stuff you don’t want and save it for
later. Maybe even feed the local rats the extras to fatten them up. That sounds
way too close to logic there folks. I’ll have none of that in this conversation.
Even so, what if the pizza delivery guy waits for me and watches me eat it, just
to make sure. I’m unlikely to piss off my primary source of food, particularly if
the only alternative are the rats from the first episode of Survivor (maybe Richard
could go get me some fish and stay clothed while he’s at it). The fact that
I don’t really care at this point means that laziness even has its place far
out in the ocean where only the pizza man knows the directions or simply that
I’m not the picky eater my mom always said I was.

Do I think I could sustain myself on any such diet? Sure. Why? Well, two
reasons. One, I love pizza (see above). Two, I have the track record. I worked
at a deli (actually a Pizza & Deli) for 4 years in college and ate pizza nearly
every day I worked there. That means that pizza entered the cavern I call my
stomach pizza about 3 days a week for years and I never got sick of it. Never.
I can’t help but feel a bit proud … and a bit ashamed (but more proud,
particularly in that macho, fraternity sort of way).

On second thought, maybe there is no life lesson here. But all this talk is sure
getting me hungry this late in the evening and I had
pizza for lunch.

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It Finally Begins

Feb 24, 2002

Ahh, I’ve finally gotten around to starting this thing. It’s only taken me about 2 years (which is when I first thought the concept would be pretty neat). Chances are that you are reading this because I’ve referred you to it. That means you are either a relative, a friend, or an anonymous stranger who is just way too interested in my thoughts. In any case, welcome to my little thought page.

This weblog, or .plan in geekspeak, will hopefully turn into my little scrap page. I’ll hopefully litter it with some fascinating thoughts, any interesting news that may be going on at the moment, and, well, whatever tickles my fancy. That means expect to see some political views (when better to complain about the world than when you think no one is listening), lots of stuff about games (I just play way too many of them), a little about my personal life (I’m not that into sharing), and lots of things that you could have gone without knowing. Always feel free to respond and comment. It’s always intriguing to hear what people think about what I think.

One last note, the updates to this page will probably be pretty infrequent until I can get my web site redesigned. Maybe this cool little blogger thing will inspire me, maybe not. Only time will tell.

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