Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Last week I was fish-sitting for Pat while he was on vacation. Or more accurately, his wife. It was easier for "Mr. Fish" to spend the week at my place rather than me having to go to Pat's house every day, so I picked him up. They gave me Mr. Fish in a little cup and told me that since he was a Beta, he would be fine spending the week in the cup. WHAT?! Mr. Fish might have been fine, but I wouldn't be. I've heard all about how Betas are OK in confined spaces because it's a biological adaptation so they can survive drought seasons. That's not the point. Human beings are biologically adapted to survive with only 3 TV stations, but would you want to spend a week like that? I didn't think so.

I have fish at home, but I was worried about Mr. Fish catching a disease or having trouble with the other fish so I set him up with his own personal Timeshare: a 2-gallon wastebasket, some gravel and a fake plant. He seemed to enjoy it, although he had a very annoying habit of tangling himself up in the leaves at the surface and floating on his side. Every time I walked by I thought for sure he was dead.

You may be wondering what the deal is with all the cans of Mountain Dew. That's because The Cat, who has spent the last 18 months completely ignoring the 10-gallon tank literally a foot off the floor, suddenly had great interest in Mr. Fish. The Cat would climb up the sofa to get a better view of a late-night snack. The Cat is old, not much of a jumper, but I wasn't taking any chances. I fortified the fish tank with the cans of Dew as a Cat Deterrent, and also as an alarm system if she did try to jump up. Fortunately, the week was incident-free.


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Monday, November 28, 2005

Wabbit Season

True story: When I was a lad of maybe 9 or 10 years, I remember getting a phone call from a friend of mine telling me that there was a dead rabbit on Ash street. Apparently it had been hit by a car and "You can see the guts and everything!" We quickly got the gang together so we could ride our bikes over to see the smushed rodent. (OK, so it wasn't exactly "Stand By Me" but this was big news to us.) Of course, none of us really WANTED to see the disgusting thing. In fact, we were sort of afraid to see it. But we had no choice. We HAD to go. And sure enough, once we got there it was every bit as horrible as we feared it would be.

The reason I'm telling this story is because I rented "Bewitched". What did I think of the movie? Well, I suppose you could say it made me feel like a kid again.


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Thursday, November 24, 2005

Five Holiday Songs Which Need to be Retired For Good

1. Manheim Steamroller's Deck the Halls - It's not 1982 anymore. We're no longer impressed using synthesizers to make music.
2. Adam Sandler's Chanukah Song - It was almost funny 10 years ago. Lots of Jews in Hollywood. Got it. Ha Ha.
3. Twelve Days Of Christmas - It's just too damn long. But if you must sing it this year, I am encouraging people to go with "Three Freedom Hens".
4. Feliz Navidad - The entire song is just two sentences long. Repeated over, and over, and over. Ay Caramba.
5. Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer - Grandma's dead. Let her rest in peace.


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Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Billboard of the day

"Money can't buy happiness. But it can buy marshmallows, which are kinda the same thing."



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Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Too much free time

It's true: If you shuffle a fresh deck of cards perfectly, after 8 shuffles the cards will be back in their original order:

Fresh deck:

Shuffle 1:

Shuffle 2:

Shuffle 3:

Shuffle 4:

Shuffle 5:

Shuffle 6:

Shuffle 7:

Shuffle 8:


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Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Thank you, California

I did a bad thing yesterday. I went to the polls as an uneducated citizen and blindly voted "NO" on all of the Propositions. It was my way of making a statement that I don't like the system that puts Propositions on ballots in the first place. It seems like if you have enough money, you can get something on the ballot and then you force other organizations to spend millions of dollars which they don't have to try to fight it. My feeling is that if fewer Propositions pass, people will be less likely to propose them in the future.

Turns out, for whatever motives, California voted down ALL of the propositions, including the four our Governor was pushing. It's nice to see the Austrian Oaf knocked down another peg.


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Monday, November 07, 2005

The Emporer has no Pants

I HATE shopping for clothes. I hate spending the money, I hate trying to make a "fashion decision", I hate trying stuff on. But I need new jeans, so I braved the stores. I particularly dislike buying new pants because I have skinny chicken legs and it's always hard to find a pair that fits me properly. I figured I would make it as simple as possible: go with basic Levi's. Macys had a nice section of Levi's, and the jeans were divided into the 3 styles: Relaxed, Loose, and Baggy.... ????? Um, aren't those all kind of the same thing? My small legs mean I don't want a Loose fit. Baggy is what all the young whipper-snappers wear, and I am anything but Relaxed. Where's the "Trim Uptight" cut? I tried on a few pairs, they were all stupid, so I just left.


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Saturday, November 05, 2005


Did you hear about this? A cruise ship was attacked by pirates. PIRATES! How cool is that?! Imagine coming back from vacation and saying "yes, we had a lovely time. Saw some beautiful beaches, had some wonderful meals, and... oh yeah, we were attacked by pirates." Awesome.

I doubt they were "real" pirates however. For my money, if they don't have the black flag with skull and crossbones they ain't the real deal. At any rate, I find it odd what a fine line there is between "pirate" and "terrorist". See, that's the problem with Al Qaeda; they need a PR makeover. "Terrorist" has such a bad vibe about it. Suppose on September 11, the guys on Flight 93 put patches over one eye and said "Arrrrrrrrr! We be air pirates, an' we be taking over this here vessel, mateys!" Instead of fighting back, I think the passengers would have said "Pirates? Hmmm... Let's see how this thing plays out."

What? Too soon?


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Wednesday, November 02, 2005


I'm losing my office today, but I'll be back. I bought a ham sandwich with extra mayo and stuck it above one of the ceiling tiles. In about 2 weeks, they'll be begging me to move back in.


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Tuesday, November 01, 2005


I spent Halloween night at a friend's house in La Canada. Each year, the city blocks off their street to vehicle traffic, so it has become THE place for trick-or-treaters to do their thing. Houses are covered with lights and decorations as if it were Christmas, only with Halloween themes. We had a full-blown tailgate party in the front yard with pizza, wine, and champagne while giving out candy.

These people were hardcore. They had someone as the designated counter, with an actual clicker to keep track of how many trick-or-treaters came by. (We couldn't simply count candy, because we gave out "bonus" treats to extra-cute kids.) The official count for the night? 1,726. That's right, more than seventeen-HUNDRED kids came by. It was insane at times; there would be a line of 20 or 30 kids going all the way down the sidewalk.

We almost ran out of candy. Around 8:00, one of the parents had to bargain with her son to take some of his candy out of his bag so we could re-gift it. I don't know what kind of deal he got, but he was definitely in the driver's seat for those negotiations. We also dug into our private party stash as well, and we made it to 9:00.

The Halloween spirit is alive and well... and it's on Indianola Way.


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