Saturday, January 31, 2009



My fellow Americans,

You Suck.



Friday, January 30, 2009

Friday's Random 10

Friday's Random 10

With all due consideration, thanks and possible apologies to the illustrious Elisson, this is what I listened to this morning, while writing:

1. "Johnny I hardly knew ya..." Dropkick Murphys

2. "Sam Hall" Johnny Cash

3. "I Lost on Jeopardy" Weird Al Yankovic

4. "The Continuing Story of Bungalow Bill" The Beatles

5. "Tomorrow's Dream" Black Sabbath

6. "Burn Down the Malls" Mojo Nixon

7. "Someone Should Tell Her" The Mavericks

8. "Radio Free Europe" R.E.M.

9. "Righteously" Lucinda Williams

10. "A Good Man Like Me" The Del McCoury Band

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Fall Guy/Unknown Stuntman

Fall Guy/Unknown Stuntman

Don't know why this was on my mind today...

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

I could have done with a bar fight today....

I could have done with a bar fight today...

Before I get to my point, can I talk for a minute about vices?

My blog, so you go to Hell.

Vices, huh? I've never smoked. I drink now and again, but rarely to excess anymore, and never to that point where I or anybody's said "put on some pants and stop drinking." And while I concede that maybe I've just been lucky on that last point, I'll continue and say that pot just made me paranoid, and I don't dig the cottony-feeling painkillers tend to give me.

Aside from running hobos down with my truck, I guess junk food's been my vice of choice.

Deep fried's a favorite, but I can go salty or sugary just as easily. Hell, if it's processed, battered in white flour, has seven or eight different preservatives and comes in a plastic wrapper, or is sold in gas stations, or out of a window next to the interstate, I've probably eaten it seven times, and have probably dipped it in nacho cheese, at some point.

So, for about six weeks now, I feel like I've done pretty well for myself. Cutting back on the starchy stuff, the sugary stuff. Not eating fast food, if I can help it. Not trying to compare it to any other particular addictions, but I just gotta go day-by-day. It's one thing to eat yogurt, or fruit, or a baked chicken breast today. But all it takes is one morning where I'm running late, and a couple sausage and egg biscuits sure does hit the spot....

I'm rambling...I'm tired.

Today was a shitty day. It's mostly of my own making, I guess. Nothing particularly bad happened. Just woke up feeling a little kicked in the balls, and was left wanting for somebody to take it out on.

In the past, a little, or quite a bit of comfort food might have been the order of the day.

Today, I did okay. Didn't go hog wild on anything. Ate vegetables, mostly. A few brazil nuts.

Stayed, pissy, though.

Maybe it'll get better.

I dunno.

The point of all this? I think I might have just felt better if I'd had a good bar fight to get into. You know, the type that begins with the sound of stools scooting over hardwood or linoleum, and ends with a redneck trying to figure out if new bridgework can be claimed on Tenncare.

It almost seems like a Monty Python if I'd gone down to the Learning Annex, and paid $20, I could have gotten into a fight.

Several weeks back, I got into a pretty intense argument with a co-worker. Truth be told, it might have been the best thing that could have happened, as I was as stress-free at the job as I'd been in weeks, and was good to go pretty much through the holiday season.

Is there a service I can call? Maybe they'll come to my house, and we can go a couple of rounds, and at the end of it, there will be no hard feelings, or more importantly, no legal action?

Eh. Enough whining. Y'all take it easy, alright?

23 Years...

23 Years...

It's one of those handful of moments I'll never forget...I was 8, and it was (I've conceded after several years of debate) a snow day. We were at the home of the lady who took care of my sister while my folks worked. I was eight.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Cormac's House burns....

Cormac's House Burns....

Saw on the Twitter feed that Cormac McCarthy's childhood home burned today....

Maybe not terribly notable, except that Cormac's moved into my top three or four favorite writers in the past year, or so. Neat to think he once lived just up the road....

Monday, January 26, 2009

Check it out....

Check it out...

Photo project...abandoned ship yard....

Very cool....

Via Boing Boing

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Royal Rumble Deadlist, 2009

Royal Rumble Deadlist, 2009

A somewhat annual event here at Big Stupid Tommyland...the WWE's Royal Rumble is tonight. It's the 22nd annual...every year ('cept '88, mind you) 30 men enter the ring, vying for the illustrious label Royal Rumble Winner. Since 1993, the winner's automatically gone on to Wrestlemania as a Main Eventer...

It's the springboard for Wrestling's biggest and most eventful's not a coincidence, I don't think, that it coincides with the end of the NFL season and operates during the lull between football and baseball.

The Royal Rumble is my favorite event. Yeah, what I watch is grown men pretending to fight in predetermined events generally designed to appeal to the lowest common denominator. I think what I like about the Royal Rumble is that it doesn't always follow the Lowest Common Denominator outcome...what happens is often somewhat random and not easy to determine prior to the outcome. I think it's the closest that professional wrestling comes to being an actual sporting event....

Yeah, I watch pro wrestling. I like the pageantry. I like the concert atmosphere. More than that, I like the Hollywood Sporting atmosphere--the feeling you get when Rocky finally beats Apollo Creed or Clubber Lang, or when Daniel-san crane kicks Johnny. Wrestling is very much about Revenge and Getting Even. It's part Morality Play, part Soap Opera. It's also very much about violence for the sake of it.

To be honest? I dig all those things.

Beneath all this though, there's something else.

Wrestlers tend to have a short lifespan, especially over the past two or three decades. Travel, lack of time to heal and an environment that encourages a body-type that, frankly, isn't natural...well, it leads to a lot of guys living hard, short lives.

I'd be lying if I said it didn't bother's something I think about long and hard, perhaps no time longer and harder than when Chris Benoit was finally overcome by any number of demons, and ended the lives of his family just before ending his own.

Still, I do watch. I don't have any illusions about it. At the end of the day, these guys choose the paths they take, as we all do.

I'd also be lying if it didn't hold a certain morbid fascination. I guess it all comes from the same place where we slow down at a traffic accident, or my own fascination with a barn near my parents' house, that is slowly falling in upon itself.

Or the part of the Oscar or Emmy ceremony, where we look back at all the stars and workers who have passed on in the previous year....


Tonight's show will be the 22nd over-the-top-rope match, and in keeping with that, we look at how many of the previous years' rumble entrants are no longer with us...

1988: Dino Bravo is dead

1989: Big John Studd, Andre the Giant, Big Boss Man, Hercules Hernandez, Bad News Brown

1990: Andre the Giant, Dino Bravo, Mr. Perfect Curt Hennig, Hercules Hernandez, Bad News Brown, Earthquake

1991: Dino Bravo, Hawk (of the Road Warriors), Mr. Perfect Curt Hennig, Davey Boy Smith, Hercules Hernandez, Kerry von Erich, Crush

1992: Big Boss Man, Hercules Hernandez, Davey Boy Smith, Kerry von Erich

1993: Owen Hart, Mr. Perfect Curt Hennig, Yokozuna

1994: Owen Hart, Crush, Bam Bam Bigelow

1995: Davey Boy Smith, Owen Hart, Crush, Dick Murdoch

1996: Owen Hart, Yokozuna, Davey Boy Smith

1997: Owen Hart, Davey Boy Smith, Crush

1998: Owen Hart

1999: Owen Hart, Big Boss Man, Golga,

2000: Big Boss Man, Davey Boy Smith

2001: Crash Holly

2002: Big Boss Man, Mr. Perfect Curt Hennig

2003: Eddie Guerrero

2004: Chris Benoit

2005: Eddie Guerrero, Chris Benoit

2006: Chris Benoit

2007; Chris Benoit

2008: Nobody. (Yet).

Kinda floors ya, still. Only Rumble without a dead guy is the one that took place a year ago....

Sunday Thoughts....

Sunday Thoughts....

Almost a week since a post? What the hell?

Monday, I was attacked by Ninjas. I defeated them after a tasty battle, but it was not without consequence, injury or penury to yours, truly. Sixty percent interest? Those Citibank Ninjas are the pits.


I think we need a ranking system for dog farts. I recommend following the sumo ranking system.


If there isn't a special level of hell for people who throw their trash into the back of your pickup truck, there should be. I'm not sure who you write a letter to about that. I just need confirmation, is all. I can deal if there is not a special level of hell.


I'm a little tired of people who are content to drive 26 miles an hour on a four-lane highway. If President Obama is capable of miracles, as the television seems to suggest, I would like him to impose some manner of instant karma penalty for people slowing the flow of traffic on our nation's highways and by-ways.


I went bowling yesterday. Every time I go bowling, I think to myself "this was fun, I oughta do this again soon..." The next day, I wake up with a stiff wrist and sore elbow.

This day, I did not.

I will take over the world with my bowling.

I will start with Tennessee. Because I live there.

Monday, January 19, 2009



It was a couple years ago that I first ran across this, and I can honestly say that it might be my favorite thing I've ever run across on the internet. I'll watch it every three months or so, and I'll laugh as hard as I did the first time I saw of those beautiful laughs that just makes you feel better about life in general....

Top 100

Top 100

As I fight desperately against sleep this morning, I answer my e-mail to find a meme I'd done a while back. I was going to delete, and then I thought that the Top 100 movies on the Internet Movie Database changes on a weekly basis, and has probably changed somewhat in the four or five years since I last posted it (Holy Christ....I've been doing this blog for 6 and a half years, nearly....)

Anyway. Put the ones you've seen in bold...

1. 9.2 The Shawshank Redemption (1994) 399,779
2. 9.1 The Godfather (1972) 336,013
3. 9.0 The Godfather: Part II (1974) 193,512
4. 8.9 Buono, il brutto, il cattivo., Il (1966) 115,820
5. 8.9 The Dark Knight (2008) 333,201
6. 8.9 Pulp Fiction (1994) 330,259
7. 8.8 Schindler's List (1993) 218,534
8. 8.8 One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975) 167,273
9. 8.8 Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back (1980) 228,338
10. 8.8 12 Angry Men (1957) 83,676
11. 8.8 Casablanca (1942) 138,745
12. 8.8 Star Wars (1977) 269,873
13. 8.8 Shichinin no samurai (1954) 78,768
14. 8.8 The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003) 291,875
15. 8.7 Goodfellas (1990) 181,172
16. 8.7 Rear Window (1954) 94,685
17. 8.7 Cidade de Deus (2002) 122,742
18. 8.7 Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981) 203,903
19. 8.7 C'era una volta il West (1968) 55,560
20. 8.7 The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001) 320,458
21. 8.7 The Usual Suspects (1994) 219,998
22. 8.7 Fight Club (1999) 298,063
23. 8.7 Psycho (1960) 115,026
24. 8.6 The Silence of the Lambs (1991) 197,046

25. 8.6 Sunset Blvd. (1950) 41,808
26. 8.6 Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964) 130,321
27. 8.6 Memento (2000) 215,207
28. 8.6 North by Northwest (1959) 75,544
29. 8.6 Citizen Kane (1941) 116,855
30. 8.6 The Matrix (1999) 308,075
31. 8.6 It's a Wonderful Life (1946) 84,062
32. 8.6 The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002) 267,227
33. 8.6 Se7en (1995) 218,240

34. 8.6 Slumdog Millionaire (2008) 31,557
35. 8.5 Léon (1994) 152,398
36. 8.5 Apocalypse Now (1979) 141,553
37. 8.5 WALL·E (2008) 110,122
38. 8.5 Taxi Driver (1976) 121,636
39. 8.5 American Beauty (1999) 239,550
40. 8.5 Lawrence of Arabia (1962) 65,712
41. 8.5 American History X (1998) 173,576
42. 8.5 Vertigo (1958) 73,663

43. 8.5 Paths of Glory (1957) 35,034
44. 8.5 Fabuleux destin d'Amélie Poulain, Le (2001) 143,371
45. 8.5 M (1931) 31,178
46. 8.5 Forrest Gump (1994) 232,322
47. 8.5 The Departed (2006) 199,664
48. 8.5 Double Indemnity (1944) 28,457
49. 8.5 To Kill a Mockingbird (1962) 67,367
50. 8.5 Alien (1979) 143,774
51. 8.5 A Clockwork Orange (1971) 154,798
52. 8.5 The Treasure of the Sierra Madre (1948) 26,024

53. 8.5 The Wrestler (2008) 14,386
54. 8.4 Das Leben der Anderen (2006) 50,065
55. 8.4 The Third Man (1949) 41,002
56. 8.4 Chinatown (1974) 62,255
57. 8.4 The Shining (1980) 138,176
58. 8.4 The Pianist (2002) 99,226
59. 8.4 Saving Private Ryan (1998) 219,084
60. 8.4 Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004) 170,785
61. 8.4 Sen to Chihiro no kamikakushi (2001) 76,417
62. 8.4 Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991) 182,172
63. 8.4 Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975) 129,871
64. 8.4 L.A. Confidential (1997) 137,836
65. 8.4 Aliens (1986) 136,749
66. 8.4 Requiem for a Dream (2000) 142,238
67. 8.4 The Bridge on the River Kwai (1957) 47,928
68. 8.4 Das Boot (1981) 58,197
69. 8.4 Laberinto del fauno, El (2006) 115,136
70. 8.4 Reservoir Dogs (1992) 168,955
71. 8.4 City Lights (1931) 20,140
72. 8.4 The Maltese Falcon (1941) 41,978
73. 8.4 Rashômon (1950) 30,292
74. 8.4 Raging Bull (1980) 71,172
75. 8.4 All About Eve (1950) 28,328
76. 8.4 Metropolis (1927) 30,645

77. 8.3 Der Untergang (2004) 60,451
78. 8.3 The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (2008) 35,942
79. 8.3 Modern Times (1936) 27,131
80. 8.3 Singin' in the Rain (1952) 44,635

81. 8.3 Rebecca (1940) 27,822
82. 8.3 Some Like It Hot (1959) 54,049
83. 8.3 The Prestige (2006) 147,148
84. 8.3 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) 130,738
85. 8.3 Amadeus (1984) 78,257
86. 8.3 The Elephant Man (1980) 44,844
87. 8.3 Vita è bella, La (1997) 84,854

88. 8.3 Gran Torino (2008) 18,954
89. 8.3 Nuovo cinema Paradiso (1988) 35,068
90. 8.3 The Apartment (1960) 27,952
91. 8.3 The Great Escape (1963) 49,254
92. 8.3 Sin City (2005) 201,407
93. 8.3 Full Metal Jacket (1987) 119,035
94. 8.3 No Country for Old Men (2007) 146,672
95. 8.3 Touch of Evil (1958) 25,943
96. 8.3 The Sting (1973) 53,018
97. 8.3 Once Upon a Time in America (1984) 55,855
98. 8.3 The Great Dictator (1940) 28,059
99. 8.3 Hotel Rwanda (2004) 70,204

100. 8.3 Sjunde inseglet, Det (1957)

A couple of words...Gran Torino, Slumdog Millionaire and The Wrestler are still in theaters...I haven't had and overwhelming desire to see Gran Torino or Slumdog Millionaire, but I figure I'll eventually see them both. However, when The Wrestler finally filters down to my neck of the woods, I figure in late 2011, I'm there with bells on.

Pray I don't get kicked out of the theater....

Sunday, January 18, 2009



I wrote a story tonight involving a fart. The fart was the seed for the idea, which grew in my mind into what I hope is a humorous literary adventure. It is roughly 3800 words. I am going to let it rest for a week, and look at it again. I am simply pleased that I was able to start and finish a story. Starting has not been the problem, lately. Finishing has.

Part of the inspiration for the story was the exchange of fart stories at work, today. I've worked too long in my particular industry, and I would like to know if farts and farting are as funny in other industries and businesses, or at the very least as pervading and prevalent as they are in mine. I ask, because the three of us telling these stories could have gone on for hours on farts alone. While this is maybe some commentary on the mindset, and the fact that we don't have enough to truly tax our brains while working, I gotta wonder if the Pope and his Cardinals sit around at break time laughing about somebody sneaking a toot out during a confession....

Anyway. Because I seem to have excess energy of the hands, while I sit and watch the Steelers and Ravens...a few fart anecdotes that somehow involve me....
  • One time, I was driving from college to my parents' house. It was a weekend, and it was winter. My windows were up. I had eaten chili for supper the previous evening. The effects were spectacular. Halfway through the trip, I stopped at a gas station to pick up a coke. I returned to my truck, open the door, and the smell of rotting cabbage and burning hair hits me like a wall. I could only wonder just how much of that methane gas had trapped itself in my clothing, and whether the folks at the gas n' gulp on Monteagle Mountain were just used to people smelling like they'd just finished shitting their pants, or if they were simply too polite to point it out....
  • I worked with a gentleman named Charles, who was possessed of little emotion. I think I've written of Charles before. He was an older fellow, who lived with his sister and brother-in-law and referred to them as such...not by name, even in the act of speaking to them and addressing them. As I stated, he rarely expressed any manner of emotion. In private, I called him "Porno Data," because he was like Data, from Star Trek the Next Generation...and I once saw him emerging from the BP station close to work with a six pack of beer and a large stack of porno magazine, that has little bearing on this story. day, Charles farted every time he squatted. Which was a trifle unfortunate, because he was having to squat A LOT. After several minutes of this, I started laughing. When he asked what I was laughing at, I mentioned his accidental flatulence. To which Charles responded by becoming insanely angry, denying the charge. It was the most emotion I ever saw the man display, before or after. This has nothing to do with the flatulence, but I wonder if Charles is dead or alive.
  • Once, while at work, I was working hunkered in a corner, getting products ready to send back for credit. A vendor representative came into the room to find a quiet place to make his notes and send an order. As he punched data into his handheld computer, he raised his left leg off the ground, and leaned slightly to the right. This apparently eased compression enough for him to release a trumpet blast out that, frankly, I'd have been crowing about. I stopped what I was doing, stunned mostly that the gentleman almost couldn't have not seen me as he walked in the room. Turns out, though, he did, as he almost let out a little scream when he turned back around to see me. "I didn't know you were there," he said. "I hope not," I replied. "I'd hate to think we'd moved that far into our relationship so quickly...."
  • The Evil Hippy, when we were roommates in college, perfected the art of farting into a box fan. I have to say that genius is in the small things in life, and finding a propulsion system to augment your own in the name of quickly spreading your gift to the masses in such a simple manner deserves nothing less than a Nobel Prize.
  • My grandmother had a stroke when I was 12. She was visiting our house at the time, and ended up spending a great deal of time in the Patricia Neal center up in Knoxville. My aunt and cousins came to visit her from Delaware. I was riding up an elevator with my Aunt Pat, along with a two nurses, and a patient in wheelchair. The patient, an elderly and rather oblivious lady, shifted in her chair and let out a blast that, to tell you the truth, might have contained more than gas. Me being 12, I was struggling not to laugh. I failed when one nurse turns to the other, and says "Doctor Who?" It's an old joke, but it was the first time I'd ever heard it....
  • My school sent the kids in the gifted program on "Summer Enrichment Trips" every year. We'd go to Colonial Williamsburg, or historic Georgia, or something similar. One year, we were assigned seats on the bus. I was seated next to a kid of Indian descent named Hemal. Hemal was gassy. Hemal enjoyed the fact. Hemal was vegetarian, and his farts smelled like wet compost. I did not enjoy the seating arrangement. Neither did the teacher who sat in front of us, who on the third day, began charging Hemal a dime every time Hemal farted. I saw that teacher several weeks back, and he brought it up. He still remembered that he made $1.90 the last three days of the trip.
  • My friend Julie laments a trip we took from Murfreesboro to Jefferson City to see our friend Lesli get married. Jason and I made that trip Hell for her, simply by replaying scenarios involving bees and squirrels interrupting the wedding over, ad nauseum. We are idiots, I grant you. What she does not know, is that I held a fart in nearly the entire ride back. How's that for chivalry?
  • I lived with my folks a little while after moving back to East TN. I'm not sure the venture was good for any of our mental stabilities, but there was the night my Dad and I were sitting in their sunroom, with their pug Max. Dad farts, because he too thinks farts are funny. Max, however, went into a barking fit that is still legend. I'm not sure what noise the Devil makes in his imagination, but it's something close to a coleslaw fart, I would imagine....

Friday, January 16, 2009

Wendy Go?

Wendy Go?

Howdy from the frozen tundra of southeast Tennessee....

Woke up to single digit temps this morning, which is well and good, if you're Inuit, like me. Reminds me of my homeland. The only thing I miss this time of year is the 20+ hours of darkness we generally get, and the horrid ice storms that trap you in your ice caves until the June thaw.

Your language still takes some getting used to. I firstly typed it Thaugh, as though it rhymed with the writer of The Loved One....

Heh. I laugh at that book, mostly because attachment to animals is amusing to me. In my homeland, it is far too cold to keep animals as pets. Food, yes. Pets, no. Never name the sandwich, that's what my father always said, just before he was impaled by a narwhal.

That is also why we did not name my second and fourth brothers. Rule of the Wendigo #3: A Man with No Name is No Man.

However, there is a school of thought that says Rules are simply Another Man's Opinion....

I don't know if I believe in a "social contract," as it were, but apparently people get a little pissy when you eat a Bacon, Lettuce and Tomato sandwich, and confuse the terms "Mayo" and "Mayor." I don't know what the problem was. His name was Marty Hellmann, and he was a lame duck. Everybody hated his policy of Manifest Destiny had brought us into direct conflict with the Snow Yuzzem, that crafty tribe of arctic apes, not entirely unlike the Yeti and Sasquatch of your legends. Everybody complains until somebody takes care of the problem.

Sticks and stones may break my bones...I know this from my banishment. But words hurt, too. Especially when that word is Wendigo, and people are hitting you with the aforementioned sticks and stones as they scream that. Looking back, I've decided that sticks and stones hurt worse.

So. Interestingly enough this January the 16th, I begin my eighth year in exile. That seven weeks wandering the wyldes of Alaska and Canada was harrowing, to be sure, and did nothing to assuage the fears of the populace of "Wendigo." I apologize for nothing. A man's gotta eat.

It wasn't until March of 2001 that I wandered into Vancouver, British Columbia, half mad and three quaters snowblind, but adequately nourished, mind you. I've made my way in the world these past eight years, a shining example of the subtle successes of Canada's Weapon X program. I am an upstanding member of society, and have left that past behind me.

But the cold surrounding Casa de Big Stupid Tommy leaves me a little wistful.

And a touch it might not be a bad idea to keep your distance....

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Cry Out: The Language Barrier

Cry Out: the Language Barrier

I try not to talk too much about the work here...but today, at the job, I found myself educated in the vernacular.

I recently hired a gentleman who hailed originally from Albany, New York. Nice enough fellow...moved down here due to a family circumstance, and he found employment with yours, truly.

I'm a fan of accents. I don't know why...I just like the idea that one word will sound differently coming from one person's mouth or another's. Moreover, I am a fan of my friend's New York accent. He came in afraid that he'd get made fun of, but being a college town, we've got kids from Maine, Ohio and New York wearing their accents like badges. More than that, two of our department managers are from Michigan and Maryland....the last one with mid-atlantic accent so prominent it sounds like its embedded itself in his chest....

Well, my new friend is not a fan of accents, and after today's lesson, I can see where he's coming from.

I'm doing my job, which today consisted mainly of fighting with the world, and letting everything I touch turn to crap. In the midst of doing so, he comes to me. I see him coming to me, a look of frustration practically buzzing off his face.

"Where is the Cry Out?"

"Where is the what?"

Occasionally, his accent will create a barrier. It is generally quickly overcome.

"The Cry Out."

After a second's thought which first yields a brand of paint, I admit: "I don't know what that is, brother...."

He asks me to come with him, and he takes me to the customer.

And sure enough, she asks for "Cry Out."

"Cry Out?" I ask...not getting it at first. After a second it kicks in.

"Let's go over here and see if this is what you're looking for.

And I take her to the Sour Cry Out.

Or, as I've always pronounced it, despite being born and raised in Appalachia...


"That's It!" she says, somehow managing to wedge extra syllables into those words, too...

I went back to my New York friend, and told him not to worry. I've been here all my life, and that one threw me for a friggin' loop.

To which he replies..."Woi you peepul kint just tawk nommil, I'll nevah know...."

Monday, January 12, 2009

Notes on a Monday....

Notes on a Monday....

Have I mentioned that I hate this time of year? It takes a team of oxen to drag me out of the post-Christmas/New Year's funk. Love it or hate it, Christmas is a frenzied rush with a definite finish line. As much as I try otherwise, I am still a destination guy, as opposed to a "enjoy-the-journey" guy. Try as I might to be the other way, I am still more apt to lower my head and bull my way to the finish line.

Often times, I get to the destination, and realize that we're in a marathon, and not a sprint. I get to the Christmas finish line, and realize that the next finish line is out-of-sight.

Enjoy the journey, I tell myself. With varying results.

Given the funk I drag myself through for much of January and February, I have not been entirely successful.

There are a couple other factors...these gray winter days don't help my mood much. And the fact that football is wandering towards its end, and we have eleven weeks or so until we get baseball that counts. I guess the distraction factor plays a small part. Not a huge basketball fan. I could get behind a hockey team, if I had one nearby. As it is, hockey is still horrible to watch on television....

Last one? Never been a big fan of February in general. I try not to view the third week hit of Valentine's and my birthday as a kick in the balls, but it's what it often amounts to. is what you make it. So, gonna work over the next couple of weeks to drag myself out of this self-fulfilling prophecy. Got a couple of writing projects that are building their foundations in my head. Gonna plow through those...maybe see if I can get something published for the first time in a few years.

Anyway. If you see my dumb ass moping around somewhere in East me a favor and kick my ass. This mopey shit's as tiresome to drive as it is to witness....

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Amerikaan Futbol...

Amerikaan Futbol...

This sports fandom, between the Cubs and Titans, just ain't what it's cracked up to be, sometimes. What starts as a diversion becomes an odd all-or-nothing emotional investment in men who get paid more in a couple years than I'll probably hope to ever see in my lifetime to hold on to a football...

Makes it all the more gut wrenching when they fail to do just that.

Easy for me to say, I realize, owing to that I've never had Ray Lewis running at me full-tilt with malice and mayhem on his personal agenda.

Well, there was that one time. There was a misunderstanding over a joke about extracurricular activities in Atlanta and a baloney sandwich. Several broken ribs and a severe aversion to concussions later, I can admit that I was fully in the wrong.

Still, in every cloud there is a silver lining: I never knew just how much I enjoyed applesauce.

But I digress.

I suppose one day sports fandom will pay off. To this point, the closest I've gotten to what I'd figure is ultimate exultation is learning from a friend who'd seen the show that Ricky Steamboat had beaten Randy Savage at Wrestlemania III, several months after Savage had crushed Steamboat's windpipe.

They're not going to tell me that football is fake after the fact, are they?

Friday, January 09, 2009

Randy Quaid and a Lightsaber....

Randy Quaid and a Lightsaber...

Anybody know of any movies where, in the climactic scene, a small, frightening child wearing a tweed jacket with leather patches on the elbows, fires beams of energy from his eyes at Randy Quaid? To this, Randy responds by deflecting the beams with a lightsaber, and then hacking the kid to pieces with the same?

This happened in a dream last night. The same dream also involved a comic book in which Optimus Prime punches the Joker in the face. I never saw said comic book. I just remember it being described in detail. Much to the exasperation of Randy Quaid.

I'd never before considered Randy Quaid intimidating, except maybe in that loud, Busch Light and a box of Slim Jims kind of way.

But damn, he kept hacking with that lightsaber, and there wasn't much left of that kid bigger than a bouillon cube. I don't want him pissed at me, either....

Monday, January 05, 2009




For the record, I have no illegitimate children, anywhere.

That I know of.

It is possible that my lack of athletic ability is not the sole reason for my not being a professional athlete.

An Old Joke....

An Old Joke....

What is killing the World's Oldest People?

Can't be a coincidence, can it?

A guy that bugs me....

A guy that bugs me....

I hate this line of spots from Wendy's. Part of it's the whole bit where I bristle at somebody in a one piece coverall pontificating about anything, be it fast food or principles of economics. If you're going to do that, press a pair of slacks and put on a collared shirt. My requirements for respect don't end at what you're wearing, but they do start somewhere in the vicinity, so there. (As an aside, they do address this in another commercial...the Asian gentleman asks "how do you know this," and the loudmouth on the right says "I used to work on Wall Street," to which he gets the response "What are you doing here?"...)

But the other thing that bugs me? The cohort on the left is the part of the Joker's crew from The Dark Knight...the one that Harvey Dent kidnaps in the ambulance following Joker's attempt to assassinate the mayor. I say that, to say this? I tend to think that time should have left the gentleman with the wherewithal to deal with the Fast Food Putz adequately...whether that means a pencil in the jugular, or simply walking away depends on your personal sense of "adequate."

Just a thought.

Lastly, since I put this spot up on my blog, I figure I should be entitled to some manner of reimbursement from the folks at Wendy's. If they should want to pay me money, then all to the good. I'd be satisfied with a free sandwich combo....

Next on my agenda is to wander down to Wendy's and demand it....

Sunday, January 04, 2009

Random Thoughts....

Random Thoughts...

Hello, and welcome to Sunday.

Your old pal Tommy finds himself on the backside of a nasty little virus that's had him more or less boondoggled for a week now. Traded a day of work this week...should have taken a sick day for another, just to sleep. Problem is, if I'm home sick, I end up driving myself nuts feeling dominates my thoughts. All I think about is just how sick I feel. Part of the joy of minor OCD. At least at work, I can put it at the back of my mind.

But, like I said, I think I'm at the backside of the thing. Which is maybe fitting, because it's made me feel like backside for the largest part of the week.

I work tonight, and I'm off tomorrow. Upon looking back, I think Monday will probably be the first day that I'm not obligated to anything in at least a month. In December, I finished my semester (took a B home in that EduPsych class, largely due to tanking the second test that took place the same week as my store's inventory). I got caught up in the Christmas rush, both professionally and personally. That 5-week corridor from the week before Thanksgiving to Christmas are the busiest 5 weeks of the year---Pulled a lot of 11 and 12 hour days, and a couple 6 day weeks in there.

What time wasn't spent working, or getting ready for work, or driving to work (when you think about it, there are some days that I was devoting 14 or 15 hours a day to the job....that's a number that galls me), I was doing all the Christmas stuff. I don't know how those married & with kids do it. I was busy enough trying to run and see friends--even missed a couple of them...didn't get to see Steven until just yesterday....

I was ready for a respite, a weekend off last weekend. Saturday, I started feeling tired. Sunday, I was chilled and achey. And the rest of the week was spent asleep or at work. With little exception, and quite literally.

I did go to the doctor. Not one of my favorite things, but he did let me know that what I have is a crud that's been going around, and my case isn't much different. Just told me to stick to Mucinex and lots of liquids. He prescribed a round of antibiotics, and a very trippy cough syrup....

There are a couple of silver linings to this little virus.

1.) It's a nice jumpstart to the whole "less massive Tommy" semi-resolution for the New Year. I'd reckon I've lost 10 pounds, and maybe more. I haven't been sick or very pukey, I've just had no appetite whatsoever, pretty much until yesterday, when I had a hamburger at lunch. Mostly it's been cups of soup, bananas and peanut butter sandwiches that I'm eating not because I'm hungry, but because it's time to eat. I'd reckon that Sunday through Thursday, I probably took in less than 800 calories each day. Not healthy, I suppose, but between that and the fact I didn't pig out at any point over Christmas, I'd reckon I'm down a pants size, and close to two.

2.) I like to call them "Fever Dreams," though they're more likely influenced by the medicines. I had these when I actually slept. There was the one dream I had where I was fighting John Goodman in a single-elimination Brawl-for-All type tournament. I won, despite Mr. Goodman's seeming ability to turn into the Big Boss Man at random intervals.

Anyway. I'm coming out of it. Still pleasantly phlegmy...enough so that I still sound like I've been washing my throat out with a wire brush. We'll be alright, though....

Saturday, January 03, 2009



As I wander around the interweb this morning, still trying to fight off the last remnants of The Cold from Hell, I wander across ticketing for the final game of the World Baseball Classic.

Now, I'm not against the whole venture...I kinda dig the idea if not the entire practice, as much as it pains me to support anything Bud Selig does. And I thought the response to the first classic in 2006 was generally positive, if not overwhelmingly so.

But was it such that the cheap seats for the championship game go for $120?


Like I said...I'm not against the idea. Seems like in this early stage, you'd want to guarantee a full crowd. I may be wrong...but when your tickets have been on sale for six weeks, and you can still get four together, six rows up from the right field foul line (closer to first, than to the wall)...maybe you're pricing yourself out of contention.

Just an idle thought.....

Thursday, January 01, 2009

The Gory Details....

The Gory Details...

So, I managed to catch a booger of a cold bug last weekend. It's still lingering, and still whupping me about the head and shoulders. I've sounded like I've been gargling with Drano for the last couple of days, and I'm finding myself unable to bring my voice much higher than a conversational tone, and the pain in my neck is excruciating.

My sinuses started to drain the other day, audibly...If I lie still, I can hear the liquid running from one part of my head to the next...I found myself wonder "what's that dripping?" and realized it was my sinuses dripping down my throat.

The worst part? When they drain with that sort of vigor, it happens day, and even more I think, at night.....

Ever take a drink of water (or milk, or beer, or absinthe) and had it go down the wrong pipe? You get immediately choked up?

Even five minutes or so the last couple of nights, I get that. I'm asleep. My sinuses are draining slowly (or quickly) down my throat, and at some point, I take a breath, and the mucusy build gets sucked down my windpipe. I wake up coughing, sputtering. Willing to trade testicles for sleep, at this point.

I'm sick, run down. And I'm operating on two and three hours of sleep the last couple of nights.

I know it's a little gross, but it's wearing your old pal Tommy the fuck out.

It'll get better, or you'll see me on the news for having flipped out becuase the poeple in front of me at the gas station took too long to cash in their scratch-off lottery tickets.....