Sunday, December 30, 2007

Closing Out '07

Closing Out '07

Anybody else just look agog at the calendar today? December friggin' 30th?

Dang. Your old pal Tommy needs to take some time to stop and smell the roses.

I wanted to have a big long look back on the year. But, truth be told, I'm a little too easily distracted by the television.

I would like to take a moment to recount what I believe to be the biggest, most important, history changing stories of the year.

Coming in at #3: Anna Nicole Smith died. I had this to say:

Strike While the Iron's Hot

I've given myself 60 hours since her death to think about it.

I want to move, that in her memory, we rename Highway 11, either here in town, or the entire length from Florida to New York, in honor of Anna Nicole Smith. It's a nice, hilly stretch of road. It's what she'd have wanted. The Anna Nicole Smith Highway. Yessir.

What's more, I think we should also rename the length of Tennessee Highway 30 that runs from Etowah to Decatur "Anna Nicole Smith Pike." It's a very curvy road, so the tribute would work on a couple of levels.

Also, I'm thinking of changing my name to "Big Stupid Anna Nicole Smith," and I think I'm free to be the sole Big Stupid Anna Nicole Smith, since the other is dead. I could only hope to achieve her level of stupidity. To Dream the Impossible Dream.

I'm doing this because the way I've been paying tribute to the fallen legend thus far is by eating TrimSpa by the handful. And I think I'm beginning to experience side effects not listed on the package. Seriously. I haven't eaten or slept since Thursday, which I hadn't considered a problem, except for the fact that R.E.M.'s "Shiny Happy People" started playing in my head around noon yesterday, and has since gotten louder, and louder, and louder. But this morning, my nose started bleeding. And not little drip drops of blood, but a steadily flowing stream. I've filled 3 Solo Grip Cups with the stuff.

Last night, the leprechauns appeared and started ripping apart my furniture and clothing.

There is a large, rabid dog that has taken residence in my hall closet. And by large, I mean "Rhinoceros" large. It ate my bed last night.

Also, this morning, I think I crapped out one of my kidneys. Which was one of those moments where you say to yourself "I just crapped out a major organ. Huzzah."

So, I'm gonna cut back on the TrimSpa. Because I need one kidney to survive, to keep up with the news coverage of Anna Nicole Smith's death.

Priorities, people.


#2. In the Spring of this year, I found this video online:


#1. I heard, and re-told the following joke 1.7 million times:

What do you call a sleeping cow?

A Bulldozer.


Actually, truth be told, 2007 wasn't a great year. Not a bad year, by any stretch of the imagination. I have my health, I've got a roof over my head and (often) too much food on my plate.

Work got really, really rough early in the year. I found myself working more than is actually healthy. And though it slackened somewhat later in the year, it often kept me ridiculously busy.

Had a couple of minor personal issues, that I probably shouldn't rehash. Suffice it to say they took up probably too much of my thinking for all the good they did me. I'm actually happy to be past them, now.

Truth be told, I've had a couple things come up in the past few weeks that have left me pretty hopeful that 2008's gonna be a pretty good year....

Anyway. I may post again before '07's done. But I do want to tell you folks Happy New Year. We'll see y'all on the flipside.

Late Christmas Gift?

Late Christmas Gift?

Looking for a late Christmas gift for your old pal Tommy? Got eight figures burning a hole in your pocket?

If you have the means to help this gentleman further develop his theories, this might be the perfect gift.

I just hope your name isn't James Rhodes, though. Don't know why the dude has such a thing against War Machines.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Aliens, Predators...

Aliens, Predators...

Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem?

That's the Alien vs. Predator movie they should have made in the first place.

Not a groundbreaker. Definitely enjoyable, though. Violent. Gory as hell. With enough of a fanboy nod to make me feel smarter than the rest of the audience. All in all, it was a nice bit of mindless distraction after an asinine streak of working 13 out of 14 days.

I wish I had a Predator spinning blade, though. Aside from my trip to No Country for Old Men, I can't think of the last time I went to a movie theater, and didn't have some douchenozzle's cell phone ring.

Thursday, December 27, 2007



I awoke this morning with the oddest thought. I was excited that Christmas was going to be here soon. I think I was emerging from a dream, though I couldn't tell you what the dream was, exactly. All I remember is waking up, excited that Christmas was going to be here, and in just a couple days. The same way I'd get excited as a kid...knowing that I'd be free of the demands of school, and that Santa Claus would be visiting in a couple of nights....

And then I realized, rubbing the sleep out of my eyes, that Christmas was now a couple days behind us.

I wouldn't have believed that there was a more disheartening feeling than waking up and realizing that 13 hours of work stood ahead...but being pulled away from that childlike excitement?

My mind plays dirty, dirty tricks.

It's not all bad. A short day of work. A trip to see No Country for Old Men, which I enjoyed immensely. A dinner of Indian food. A trip to pickup a couple items I'd hoped to get for Christmas (No Simpsons movie under the tree? Ye Gods....)

Got a thought or two on No Country for Old Men, but I think that's a post for another time....

This Thursday, I think I'll finish with the best bad joke I've heard in weeks:

The captain of a fearsome pirate ship decides to have a talk with a rookie that is setting out for his first voyage ever.

The Captain asks: "Got any questions?"

The new recruit stammers for a second, and asks: "Just one. Since there are no women on the ship and we are at sea for months at a time, what do we do if we get…uh…you know…the urge?"

The Captain points and says, "See that barrel over there?"

The rookie nods.

The Captain asks, "See the hole in the side of the barrel?"


"Well, anytime you get the urge, just use that hole in the barrel," the Captain says. "Anytime except on Thursdays."

The Rookie nods, and thinks for a second. "Okay. Why not Thursdays?"

The Captain turns to leave, and says "That's your day inside the barrel."

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

What We Learned on Christmas

What We Learned on Christmas

When you get asked to do cooler & freezer checks on Christmas?

Say No.

That is all.

In which he wishes everybody a Very Merry Christmas...

In which he wishes everybody a Very Merry Christmas...

Well, the freight train we've all seen coming for weeks crept silently into station last night. It's Christmas morning, and your old pal Tommy's got an all-too rare (lately) moment for reflection.

An opinion? The line of demarcation between childhood and grownupitude comes that moment when Christmas stops being something you can't wait for, and becomes something you wish you could put off for a couple days more, just so you could get a little more done.

That second stage has an evolution itself. We all encounter them...hell, you may be one. The holiday gets to be a bit much for some people, and before it's all said and done, they just want it to be over with.

My hope is not to become one of those people.

My other hope is that you are not one of those people.

We get a lot going on in our lives. "Life's gotten hectic" is a phrase I've spoken more than once the last few months--it's left me with less and less time to stop and smell the roses. And that's what I'm thinking's going on with those folks who wish for the season just to be over. We've got a world and a season that's over-run with Type A, Git-r-done personalities. And in that, we forget that it's not about the destination, it's about the journey.

So, my sincere hope, now that we've reached Christmas morning, is that after all the running, after all the jockeying for position, after all the struggling, that you've had the time this holiday season, and that you're taking the time today, to spend time with the folks you care about. I hope your tribulations this season have been worthwhile, and they've brought you and yours some happiness.

I also hope you get some rest.

Truth be told, that's what I'm most looking for today.

Yeah, Life got hectic for your old Pal Tommy this week, too. Managing a grocery store during the holiday season does not make for a restful week. I've been witness to folks running to and fro. The largest majority have been easy to get along with, thankfully. Working customer service, though, often leaves you subject to the wrath of that vocal minority.

The trick to the job, is understanding that they're just working to enjoy themselves too. And while I'm not as successful at letting it roll off my back as I'd like all the time, I do pretty well letting it go in a short enough amount of time.

(Though the guy who got pissed when I thought he was joking with me about his deli cheese not being stacked neatly enough, I'm still working to get past. My response? "I think it'll probably taste the same." Such did not leave him happy. But, at the end of the day, there were and are bigger fish to fry. And the reality? If somebody's Christmas was ruined by cheese not being stacked symmetrically? Their standards might be a touch too high...)

But rest? Yeah. Life got hectic.

A few notes from the past few days:

My parents' little pug Max is slowly convelescing after he had a run-in with with a contractor's pickup truck. A scary day, actually. That little dog has more personality than any three people I know, but has the least amount of "Car Sense" of any animal outside of your runaday deer. They've worked with him, but have had to keep him inside whenever cars are running. This time, communication didn't work, and he got hurt. He's in a lot of pain, and it hurts him to walk. But we're pretty confident he'll be himself before long.


Managed to get together with The Gruesome Twosome over dinner. Traded Christmas gifts. Enjoyed some Mexican food. Don't see either of those two enough....


Steven and I wandered toward Cleveland for pizza and beer Saturday night. Traded Christmas gifts with him. Enjoyed the company.


Lastly, and maybe bestly....I got to meet Tish the night before last. She correctly noted that I get to move her blog from the list of bloggers I Can Only Assume Are Real to the List of Bloggers I've Met (and thusly ascertained their existence).

Tish is very nice lady, who does indeed exist. In person, she's as charming and funny as she is on her blog. Meeting her was a real pleasure, and something I hope to do again in the near future.


It's been busy, like I said. Life got hectic...there were more than a couple nights with just three or four hours sleep.

But last night, I collapsed a little before 10. Nine hours later, I pulled myself out of slumber, refreshed and ready for the day....

My family's celebrating Christmas at my parents' house later this afternoon. I'm watching a little TeeVee. Got a couple more presents to get wrapped before I head out that way.

Before I do, I just wanted to once again, wish all you guys a Very Merry Christmas.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

The Funeral Dirge

The Funeral Dirge

To some? Wistful. And, I grant you, were I not hearing it multiple times a day at a place I tend to spend 29 hours a day at, I might feel the same. As it is, it sounds like the theme song to Tommy's Irritated Christmas.

So, I'll back off somewhat on my stance. I still fill like it's something that the Grim Reaper would play at his house this time of the year, but it would probably be really, really creepy to play at a funeral.

(Note to self, change the will, nix the Pipers playing "Amazing Grace" a'la Spock's funeral...I want "Christmastime is Here" sung at my funeral. Perhaps by Leonard Nimoy, if he's still kicking....).

That said, I give you this. It is another personal favorite:



Hello? Do you know a lot of words?

I don't.

I found this out by playing Free Rice. Which purports to give rice to starving people based on your correct answers. So, the bigger your vocabulary, the more people get rice. Simple concept, huh? So, that means the dumber you are, the more people starve. Serves you right. You could read a book, or watch a show that takes a brain to watch, but just ponied up to the boob tube three times a week to watch that Karaoke contest on Fox while the Chinese brain themselves up enough to smash us into oblivion.

And I say that as the guy who's probably spent a year of his life watching men in spandex pretend to fight. Sometimes, it's not which rock you use to throw in the glass house, it's the vitriol you use to hurl it...

For me, though, the game is just another reason to cuss. As it stands, on any given day, I have a working vocabulary of right around 75 words.

Mostly it's me sounding out the world, and then picking the Third Option.

A lot like the SAT's. God bless those state schools.

I bashed it, but I will say that Pro Wrestling is directly responsible for my knowing two of the words. Imbroglio, I learned from one Gordon Solie. And the word Occipital? That's a Gorilla Monsoon favorite.....

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Christmas Tags

Christmas Tags

Synchronicity. Got this one e-mailed to me. Then I noticed that Newscoma tagged me on it. Funny how that works.

1) Link to the person that tagged you, and post the rules on your blog.
2) Share Christmas facts about yourself.
3) Tag 7 random people at the end of your post, and include links to their blogs.
4) Let each person know that they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.

1. Wrapping or gift bags? Wrapping. Bagging would be more practical, since most rottweilers have about the same wrapping skills that I do.

2. Real or artificial tree? No tree. Not home enough. A real one, were I putting one up, though.

3. When do you put up the tree? I hate it when questionaires don't listen. This is not how a stable relationship is formed. Ask a question, and then listen to the answer....

4. When do you take the tree down? Again, I feel like this questionaire isn't listening.

5. Do you like eggnog? Sometimes. It's a texture thing. At its worst, its like drinking a cup of snot. However--if you spice it well enough, I'll try it....

6. Favorite gift received as a child? For some reason, Castle Grayskull from Masters of the Universe stands out. I always liked it. Plus, we used the box it came in as a makeshift sled a few days after Christmas, that year.

7. Do you have a nativity scene? Nope. My folks have one. But I don't.

8. Worst Christmas gift you ever received? I've told this story once or twice...once, a family friend came over with a present. I opened the paper, and it was a G.I. Joe Motorcycle!!!! Inside the box? Socks. Bastardly socks.

9. Mail or email Christmas cards? Mail. Running late, this year. I'll get mine out tomorrow ;)

10. Favorite Christmas movie? There are three....A Christmas Story probably comes in on top. Christmas Vacation, and March of the Wooden Soldiers.

11. When do you start shopping for Christmas? Over the course of the year.

12. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? I don't eat much chocolate. It gives me nightmares. But if somebody should make chocolate covered Peanut Butter Ritz Crackers? It's on....

13. Clear lights or colored? We try not to use the term "Colored" at the house, after a shameful incident involving my brother-in-law and a piece of fried chicken. We prefer "multi-hued."

14. Favorite Christmas song? Hark! the Herald Angels Sing

15. Travel at Christmas or stay at home? Stay Home.

16. Can you name all of Santa’s reindeer? Little known fact? The reindeer in C. Clement Moore's poem have long since died. The last, Vixen, died in 1984 in a four-wheeler accident. The names of the current reindeer: Happy, Clancy, Jude, Warren, Dirk, Gargamel, Ida, Trevor and Percy.

17. Angel or star on the top of your tree? Again with the tree....Jeeze. Why doesn't the internet listen to me?

18. Open your presents Christmas Eve or Christmas morning? Christmas morning. Sometimes, we got to open one on Christmas Eve. A couple times, we left for my grandparents' house in New Jersey on Christmas Day, and opened all the presents.

19. Most annoying thing about this time of year? People get so impatient. It's the personification of've had the whole year to get ready. Why try to make the perfect Christmas in the last three shopping days of the year?

20. What do you leave for Santa? I think Santa is partial to Pecan Sandies. Not many people share this belief. I like to call those people "wrong."

21. Least favorite holiday song? The "Christmas Time is Here" song that is sung at the very beginning of Charlie Brown's Christmas special. For one, it sounds like a Funeral Dirge. And for two, they play it on our in-store radio three times a day, and when you're trying to work, it's the slowest frigging song to try to work to...

22. Do you decorate your tree with any specific theme or color? No. Because I don't decorate a tree. (Now my folks' tree? Hodgepodge is the theme.)

23. Favorite ornament? Mom gets me ornaments every year. And for some reason, I think my favorite is a Garfield ornament she got me, where he's dressed as a reindeer. He seems very satisfied as a reindeer. Also, my geeky side likes having Darth Vader and the starship Enterprise on the tree....

Now I gotta tag seven people?

Jeez. I don't even know Seven people ;)

I think I'll tag Shyam and Steven, just to keep them posting.

I'll tag Tish, because she's probably tagged me for 78 awards and memes, and I'm way behind....

I'll tag Eric, to see how they celebrate Christmas on the other end of the county.

I visit Teresa a couple times a week, but don't leave nearly enough comment. I tag her, mostly out of appreciation for the snow pictures.

I think I'll tag Emily. Because her blog's been making me laugh for a long, long while now.

And I think I'll tag Danielle. Mostly because I enjoy being able to communicate with people on the other side of the planet, and I'd like to see how she does Christmas down under...

In which he posts a Christmas video...

In which he posts a Christmas video...

In lieu of content, and before I wander towards bed...I like this one. I don't mind it so much when they play it on the in-store at work...

God bless those celebrities.

Bono frightens me. Even in the 80's.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

A Frightful Sunday Morning...

A Frightful Sunday Morning...

You know, I'm not a big fan of the slow, rising horror that is "a clogged toilet." I am even less a fan of it, first thing in the morning.

The low grade adrenalin rush beats coffee, though.

Saturday, December 15, 2007



Friends, I'd like to take a minute to talk to you about one of the virtues in life, one that seems to get pushed to the wayside more and more often in our workaday world. I'd almost call it the forgotten virtue, except that when times are darkest, in shines through as brightly as any....

It's honesty, friends.

It's about respect, really. Having respect for your common man. Having respect for his intelligence, for his state of being. It takes a strong person to be honest, to not mislead.

Especially when one is at fault.

That's why I'd like to single out my co-worker and my sometime reader Neil, for today's glowing display of forthright honesty.

It's the start of the workday. I'm a little chagrined at the lack of productivity of those who worked the night before. I know that it's going to be a rough day to start with, without having an extra load thrown on top of me.

And then Neil shows up. Neil and I talked of several things that are of mutual interest: each of us wants to start our own business; each of us loves movies; each of us enjoys threatening the other with horrendous, bloody violence--threats that have not come to fruition in the nearly four years we've known each other.

At least, not yet.

Well, Neil and I are chatting. I'm in the middle of describing the previous day's debauchery, when I smell something.

Now, working in a grocery store, as I do, is working in an environment rife with scents, both pleasant and nauseating.

To make a long story I told my story, one of the blistering, eye-watering smells I've ever encountered hit me.

Ho. Lee. Shit. I have no words.

My first thought? I was standing directly underneath the backroom's heater. I'm not much on things technical, but my brain first thought that something had gone terribly wrong, something had reptured within the heater, and that made the smell that I was now smelling.

My mind quickly dismissed that....and I started looking for a broken dozen eggs. If there is one constant in the universe, it is that a 17-year-old bagger will find a way to maximize both the laziest way to dispose of a broken dozen eggs and the most disgusting way. I was, for a split second, sure that if I looked hard enough and close enough to my personal space that I'd find a dozen eggs, broken, and left long enough to get hot and rotten.

And then it hit me.

Occam's Razor. The simplest solution is the best.

"Dude," I said to Neil. "Did you fart?"

And here, honesty shined through.

His response? With a smile:

"Oh, Absolutely!"

Honesty, my friends.

Two guys. One farts. Both knew who did it. And he didn't insult what little intelligence I have by telling me "no."

Or, if he were like me, given the paint-peeler he'd just sullied the atmosphere with....he was just a proud papa...

Friday, December 14, 2007

In which he cannot access the interweb from home...

In which he cannot access the interweb from home...

I'm starting to think I might have to institute the same rule for the folks at Comcast that I did for the Chicago Cubs....every time I mention them, my service goes out. So, for today, no internet service from the house. Started late last night, when my service kept bottoming out. It's a intermittent problem, say the people on the telephone.

So. Think good thoughts. Good Comcast. Good....

Thursday, December 13, 2007

In which I make a new friend....

In which I make a new friend...

Yesterday being the first day off I'd had off in several, it became chore day. This was the day I spent catching up on all of life's little tasks that I'd let fall by the wayside. Now, you faithful readers (all three of you) know that in the first part of the day, I wandered out and about in town with my fly down.

It was pointed out, later in the day, that it was probably such an unremarkable thing given my general tendency to be hopped up on goofballs, that nobody thought to give it a second thought.


Later in the day, I wandered back out and about, fly in its correct positon, to complete more chores.

First among them was to visit the folks at the cable office, because I had a question about my bill, a question that was not successfully answered on the telephone. Just as an aside, I'm thinking that there's gotta be an entry under "incompetent" for the telephone service that Comcast gives in this neck of the woods...spent 3 or 4 minutes on the phone trying to get an upgrade on my television service...the rep I spoke with said, at the end of that 3 or 4 minutes...Oh! I'm on the wrong menu, you're wanting to upgrade your tv service!

So, anyway, I go to the local office. I'm going to pay my bill, and ask my questions. To my mind, this sortie into the world of Comcast shouldn't last a lot longer than 5 minutes.

One window was open. Which wasn't an issue so much, since there were just two customers. I can handle standing in line that long, right?

Well, it is in the offices of Comcast that I am an innocent bystander to the customer in front of my way-laying the rep with stories of his time as an over-the-road truck driver who doesn't need cable, but he's got a son at home who's coming off rehab at the house who needs something to do while he's there, so that he's not out getting into trouble.

I know those facts because in the 10 minute span I stood behind him, he rehashed those same four facts, without much variation upon the theme, four...maybe five times.

He finishes his business (which, in a sane world, probably shouldn't have taken much more than 48 seconds). I walk to the counter. Find out the answer to my question in right around 30 seconds. I pay my bill, and move on.

After leaving the fine folks at Comcast, I decide to take advantage of the time off to get the oil changed in the truck. My usual place of choice has closed in the past couple of months. The new management had claimed themselves victim to their inability to compete with Wal-Mart's pricing. I (and the past management) point to that new management's inability (or unwillingness) to maintain the level of customer service people were accustomed to. It wasn't an impossible task...I mean, it wasn't like the previous owners were blowing the customers. Just doing a job right, and doing it dependably.

But that's neither here nor there.

Their closing has left me somewhat lost for a lot of my minor car maintenance. I ended up going to a local quick-change place to get everything done on the truck.

I pull in, and there's a car in the bay ahead of me. I let the attendant know what I'm needing, and I head into the waiting room.

And who is sitting there?

The same dude who held me up for 10 minutes at the cable office!

And he's in the middle of his over-the-road-truck-driver story.

Now, usually, I bring a book with me wherever I go. In case of traffic, or in case I have to wait for somebody. But, my truck book has been a CD copy of David McCullough's 1776, and I couldn't figure a practical way to drag my truck's stereo inside with me.

I tried making do with the day old paper I'd read the night before.

All told, I heard his story twice more.

I'd considered standing under the awning outside (it was raining--otherwise, I'd have wandered out in the parking lot). But, my over the road truck driving friend with a son in rehab left shortly after that.

Well, a last errand sent me in the direction of Big Lots. And I'll tell you that I was able to complete the Christmas season with but one purchase.

Three words.

Transformers Wrapping Paper.

Thank you.

Anyway, I'm leaving Big Lots, and I stop at a red light, heading toward my bank for my last errand.

I look to my left, at the car in the turn lane.

Who's there?

My good ol' truck driving friend.

Not in a truck.

In a maroon Toyota Camry

I look in his direction. He looks in mine. Give me a surprised look. And holds up a pad of paper.

With my address on it!!!!!!

That last part's a lie.

He was there at the stoplight. I went in the other direction. Desperately hoping that he didn't bank at my bank.

And that he didn't know where I lived.

Thus endeth the reading of the scripture lesson.


Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Cub Blogging

Cub Blogging

I wonder the last time I actually did a Chicago Cubs-related blog post. Probably early in the last season. I latched onto a bit of self-centric uber-paranoia, where I came to believe that any mention of the boys in blue on this page tended to be the catalyst for a Cub losing streak.


What followed was a display of will-power unmatched over the course of my life. If I could find a way to funnel that manner of neurosis to curb my love of Wendy's....

Anyway. I've been following with a touch of skepticism this whole Kosuke Fukudome thing. Granted, I've been hollering most of my natural born fandom for the Cubs to find a solid left handed bat to plant in the middle of the order. But...and call me a me me quietly pessimistic. Yeah, you got your Ichiro, and your relative success of Hideki and Kaz Matsui. I just still think of the guys from Japan still as unproven commodities.

Not smart, probably, given the evidence. But I never once claimed to be smart. That said, I'm just not going to go nuts over planting the guy in right field.

But, I'm not unhappy. A left-handed bat? Like I said, I've been praying to Jeebus. And my parents' dogs would be an improvement over the free-swinging, slow and decrepit mess we've had out in right since Sammy left.

And on the interweb, I can only think of one feller who surpassed my personal anti-Sammy sentiments....

Anyway. I want to voice one more opinion: the hot stove season drives me nuts. We're 100+ days still away from actual baseball that counts being played. And somehow, that seems quite unfair....

Labels: ,

Go Read This

Go Read This

Since I tend to work like a botard, sometimes, I don't post things that I think about, or want to draw your attention to.

One of them is that Tish, who blogs over here, has recently gotten a new blog going. The Blogging Gal gives tips and thoughts for the blogging enthusiast. She's got a good first post on the the issue of internet addiction

As an aside, I don't know that I'm addicted, but I'd rather you take away my television, radio, sense of hearing and breathable air before you took away my interweb connection.

Go give each site a look!



Y'all just found your old pal Tommy in the midsts of one of life's little moments.

Got home from running a couple of errands. Paid a couple of bills. Had to mail an Ebay package. Ran into the K-Mart to pick up a few things. Came home. Sat down on the couch. For whatever reason, I looked down toward my crotchular regions.

And I had to ask.

Just how long have I been wandering around with my zipper down?

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Drummer Boy

Drummer Boy

Well, after 8 straight days, I enter an odd period over the next 8 where I work every other day. One on, one off. I won't know what to do with myself.

Nothing else to say, this morning, where I'm running late for work.

In lieu of actual content, I bring you this's a Christmas favorite:

Saturday, December 08, 2007

That Boy Ain't Right

That Boy Ain't Right

Tish presented me with this award, celebrating my nuttiness.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

This is much preferable to the red "nuts" stamp they recommended I wear on my forehead, at a previous jobsite. So, thanks to Tish.

I think I will tag Shyam, Erica and 'Coma. Because they all make me smile...



Friday, December 07, 2007

Chapter MMDCCLXXI: In which he inhabits a Flannery O'Connor Story

Chapter MMDCCLXXI: In which he inhabits a Flanner O'Connor Story

Maybe not.

I got home late from work last night. Didn't feel like cooking. I ordered a pizza.

My pizza was delivered by a rasping man with a trach ring.

It was lightly surprising. It's not what I was expecting, at least.

I mean, I didn't open the door and pass out, or start screaming hysterically.

That sort of thing tends to put people off, so I do my best to refrain from screaming, whether it be surprise, anger, fear or any combination of the above.

Plus, I think it would make my job a little more difficult if people screamed in terror every time they saw me.

But I might enjoy it more.

I dunno.

A couple at work have taken to describing me as a teddy bear. Which is offputting to me, because I'd rather not end up inside a cedar chest. I have really had only one teddy bear to be associated with, and he is locked safely away in the cedar chest at my parents' house.

I would prefer not to be kept in a cedar chest.

Please take this into consideration.

It's 5:45 in the morning. I'm working out of town today. Dammit.

We've had many long and involved discussions about my missing beauty sleep, and how it just ain't wise.

Anyway. Y'all have a good day.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

A Badger will Hold 5 Squirrels

A Badger will Hold 5 Squirrels

Lines like that?

Scrubs is beautiful, sometimes....

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

The Road Not Taken

The Road Not Taken

It is on days like today, when I'm really just worn out on people, that I question this path in life that I've taken.

I mean, yeah, I'm a media hero, adored by dozens. I have the strength of 1.7 men, can freeze things with a thought and my voice mimics the hypersonic frequencies of the remote controls of your older television sets. I can name both the Presidents of the United States and the WWE Intercontinental Champions in Chronological order (and can tell you the names of the three men who held both titles). My natural scent has been canned, marketed as an afrodisiac, recalled because of the rashes, relabelled and re-marketed as the very best mosquito repellant money can buy. My birthday is a national holiday in seven countries south of the equator. I can outdrink, outcuss and out-Indian-Wrestle any second grader in this great country of ours. I am a man of the people, man about town and man among men.

I really shouldn't let people bother me like I do.

I'm practically a superhero.

But, people wear me out. The ones I don't want to see, I see too much of. And the ones I do want to see, I don't get to. There's an inverse proportion law at work, here. I'm sure Woody Allen's probably written several short stories on the matter.

Truth be told? I sometimes wonder what life would have been like if I'd followed another path.

Sometimes, despite all my gifts, talents and obvious charms, my life lacks direction.

Sometimes, I wish I'd taken those Germans up on their offer, all those years ago.

Tonight, and possibly for the last twenty years, I think my life could have used a little Fahrvergnügen.

Zombie Blogging

Zombie Blogging

Boy, that's a nice jacket for a zombie

Big Stupid Tommy. Handsome sonuvagun.

Monday, December 03, 2007



It's weird, but I'm rooting for the Patriots in their bid for a perfect season.

I may have jinxed them with that statement.

But when the Ravens threw up that final desperation pass, and it connected?

Heart in my throat.

Tommy's brain is tired....

Tommy's brain is tired...

Damn but them lolcats is funny sometimes....

funny pictures
moar funny pictures

Evolution/Revolution, part 5

Evolution/Revolution, part 5

Well, I don't really have a stopping point to emphasize what my blog has become in 2007, some 5 years after the fact.

I was talking with Shyam about it, over lunch. For the most part, the intent of this blogamathing is still the same now, in 2007 as it was 5 years ago. It's an attempt to get myself to write. And to that point, it does its job for the most part.

It's where I go when I want to curse about Bud Selig, or whatever stupid the Cubs have done lately. I come here to blab about movies. If I've found something that's piqued my fancy, I can post it. Mostly, it' just whatever's leaking out of my head at that moment.

Luckily, it's mostly me trying to be a smartass or silly. I don't know if, outside of quantity, there's a big difference in what comes down in 2007 as it did in 2002.

More than anything, it's just an online extension of the personality.

Most indicative?

I dunno. Maybe this, from July of this year...a brief musing on the nature of Optimus PRime...


In my post Sunday, I said: "If I were to take the time to list all the people, real or imagined, who upheld the ideals that I wish that I could uphold myself on a consistent basis, Optimus Prime would find his way to the top of that list."

I apologize for being vague in my statement, and would like to clarify just a touch:

I said that I'd like to emulate a person, real or imagined, who upheld the ideals I wish I could....

The ideals that Optimus Prime upheld: Quiet honor; a desire to protect; benevolent; the ability to educate; a belief in equality; the ability to transform into a transfer truck.

Now, if I had to rank those ideals, I would rank them thusly, from least to most important:

6. His Belief in Equality
5. Quiet Honor
4. Benevolent
3. The Ability to Educate
2. The Ability to Transform into a Transfer Truck
1. A Desire to Protect

It's a self explanatory list. That second item is really badass, especially since I have only been able to transform into anything twice in my life, and then it was only into a fire hydrant (first time) and into a dune buggy that broke down on Clearwater Road (second time).

And as it concerns the list of people who uphold ideals that I value, Optimus Prime ranks just behind two people in their ability to transform into vehicles: George F. Will (A-Team Van) and Eudora Welty (Orbiting Space Laser Platform).

So, there you go. My little exercise in navel comtemplation's done. I don't know that I'll tag anybody. If you feel like playing a long, give me a comment or shoot me an e-mail. Thanks to Tish, for tagging me.

I will say this, after five years, if I haven't yet: Grassy Ass for reading. It's been a good distraction, and I've enjoyed it. Got to meet a few of you along the way, and look forward to meeting a few more of you. I hope those sevens of you reading at home, or dicking around at work, get the same amusement out of it that I do.

So, again, thanks for reading. Now get back to work.

Evolution/Revolution, Part the Fourth....

Evolution/Revolution...part the fourth...

In 2005, I got a promotion at my job. It's a promotion I've alternately enjoyed and lamented, depending on how much time it takes out of my schedule, and how far I have to drive on a given day.

If I had to put a word on this section, I'd call it "Working's for Suckers."

Simply because sometimes, I don't get to post like I'd like, owing to working so many hours in a day or a week.

Posts during certain times in the past couple of years have gotten sporadic, disjointed, depending muchly on how much time I have on hand.

Mostly, my attention in this time is very mothlike. Again, I'm posting whatever's on my mind.

Here's one from last year, just after I found out a little bit of Big Stupid Tommy personal trivia:

Umpteenth Generation

Got an e-mail last night from a site that tracks my family tree, I was listed as an orphan...essentially, I think my name came up on the interweb, most likely because of this blog, but they had no means of connecting me to another set of Acuffs.

Went in, set up an account, found myself on the family tree. I was there under my birth name, just not Tommy. Sent an e-mail wit the correction. Got to digging.

My grandfather was born in 1901 in Grainger County, Tennessee. Home of the Fighting Tomatoes. Apparently, we took root in Grainger County: Four Generations of Acuffs leading up to my grandfather came out of Grainger County, all the way up to another Thomas Acuff.

That Thomas Acuff, my Great, Great, Great, Great Grandfather, was born in 1793 in Henry County, Virginia. This may be the same one I've heard tell served with Andrew Jackson in the War of 1812...the only thing marking him as military is a listing with him with Robert McGinniss' militia company.

His father, John Acuff (there are lots of Johns and Thomases in my family...I and my Dad are Thomases, and Dad has a brother John) was also from Henry County, Virginia, and was born in 1768, and is listed in the database as from 1779-1784 as having served in the Henry County Militia. In 1802, he established a church in Grainger County. He had moved there with family somewhere before 1799.

One last thing on John: They don't have a definitive date of death, but it's listed to have happened some time in 1866. That old bugger lived to be 98. Good for him.

Other Acuffs on back....there's John Sr., the father of the previous John, who in the year we declared independence witnessed the will of somebody named Robert McConway.

On back: My Great (x9) Grandfather...another Thomas...was born in 1675. Not sure where...there's no listing. His father was born before 1635, in merry old England. Now this Thomas (whose name spellings vary from Ayscough to Ascouff to Acuff) married Elizabeth Ingo in 1695, in Middlesex County, Virginia, in 1695. They had a daughter, Anne, in 1697, and a son Christopher, my great (x8) grandfather in 1699.

So. Let's do that math: 9 great grandfathers, plus my grandfather, my father and me.

That's 12 definitive generations of Acuffs on the continent, and possibly 13. We've got roots.

I don't think you'll be getting rid of us any time soon.

Going to go dig some more.

Evolution, Revolution III: Ass End of the Night

Evolution, Revolution III: Ass End of the Night

The section, we call "Thoughts from the Ass End of the Night."

I'm a bit of an insomniac. I go through phases. I can go months sleeping my needed 6-7 hours a night.

Sometimes, I'll have a night or two where I sleep a couple or three hours.

Occasionally, I'll have long bouts with the condition. The longest, and scariest, of these came early this year. I had a lot of things on my mind, and I ended up going about three months where I'd go at least 5 nights a week on less than four hours sleep--truth be told, I probably should have sought help, and if I ever get to that place again, I will.

But most of my insomnia is a sporadic thing, no different than what most people suffer. I'm the type that wakes up in the middle of the night, usually to take a whiz, and can't fall back to sleep.

It's a frustrating thing. But the worst thing I can do, I've found, is lie in bed trying to fall back to sleep. I usually make myself get up and do something. Watch TV. Read. Do Dishes. Or write junk for the interweb.

This blog is mostly about what's on my mind. It's a purgative, it gets the junk out of my head.

And at night? When I can't sleep? Sometimes the stuff don't come out as funny. At worst, the Ass End posts can become maudlin' whirlpools of self-loathing. At best, they can be stream-of-consciousness gems, if I do say so myself.

I post what I think of as a gem, from November of 2004:

Thoughts from the Ass End of the Night

Ah, the Insomnia Posts.

In the past, a staple of the BSTommy experience. Here lately, I've been sleeping a bit better. But the past couple of nights have kinda sucked. And here I am, up and around at 2:30 in the AM.

I was having a dream. Not a bad dream, or a good dream, particularly. Just a dream about something pretty mundane, driving. But the dream was a bit tenacious, in that it kept wanting to be dreamed even while I was awake. I woke up out of the dream, but kept struggling to knock the dream out of my head. I'd try to start thinking of something else, or nothing at all, but my brain would just kind of fall back into the rhythm of that dream.

Sorry, boring, I know. But it's what woke me up. I'm the one more annoyed. I'm the one up at 2:30 instead of sleeping.

Maybe if I'd just wandered back into my driving dream, I'd be asleep now.

I'm quite the fool.

Obi Wan had something to say about fools.

Obi Wan had some balls, talking to Han Solo like that, what with his Wookiee.

I always kind of thought of that guy who travelled around with Michael Landon in Highway to Heaven as a wookiee. We got to talking about that show at work one day, and I couldn't think of the actor's name, or even the character's name, so I just referred to him as Chewbacca.

We talk about Highway to Heaven a lot at work.

A lot.

I've been struggling with a light cold for a couple of days now. More than anything, it just leaves me feeling worn out and run down. But I've got the stuffy head and scratchy throat, too. That may be part of my problem with this whole being awake thing. Come to think of it, I don't feel really good right now.

Maybe I'll call in tomorrow.

Eh. I'm too stupid to call in.

Is it cold where you are? It's kinda chilly where I am. In the 30's. Cool enough for a fire. But there's no fire. Thus, it's kinda chilly.

My radio just scared the shit out of me. I'd hit the sleep button for the radio, where it plays for an hour while you go to sleep, in hopes of falling right back to sleep...stupid mundane dreaming had other things to say. It was playing in the background...George Noory's talking about A.I. and all that jazz. But the radio cut off a few minutes ago. I figured I'd hit my 59 minutes. But it just cut the hell back on. Turns out the station had been doing the dead air thing while George was at station break.

You have no idea how much that frightened me.

I've been screaming for the past 20 minutes because of it.


I went out to Nashville this past weekend. Saw my friends Julie and Jason. We hung out. It was weird just how much heading out to Murfreesboro felt like I'd just been gone a week or two. I've been out here in East TN for four months now. File that one under time flies, I guess.

Picked up the Proclaimers CD with I'm Gonna Be on it, just in case that little booger got in my head again, while I was at Great Escape. The only way to exorcise that demon is to play a song over and over, don't you know?

Or, you could use Mr. Burns' memory eraser. But that seems like an extreme measure, for an 80's pop tune.

Anyway. I've bored you folks enough. Let's try this sleep thing again. No stupid insipid dreams about driving my truck. Power of positive thinking, and whatnot.

Evolution/Revolution, part Deux....

Evolution/Revolution, part Deux...

Continuing the meme found here....

It was the summer of 2003 that I started getting links from other blogs. It was in that time that I first started watching a webcounter, and the first time I started putting comments on my blog.

This all coincided with a three month or so period in 2003, where I found myself unencumbered by employment. I was jobless. I'd left one job, and for about three months didn't have a job that lasted much more than a few days. I think I probably post more from July to October of 2003 than at any other point in my blogocareer.

I can't put exact dates on these things, but there a couple groups I joined online during that time.

The first was the Rocky Top Brigade, which is now defunct, I believe (Somebody correct me, please, if I'm wrong.) It was a grouping of Tennessee bloggers, and as a Tennessee blogger, I joined up. It was in that group that I started reading blogs like Danielle's, Barry's, Uncle's and eventually Eric's. I was a member in decent standing, and participated in the RTB's Tailgate parties from time to time. Over time, I think the group got a little too unwieldy. I wasn't participating so much in group functions a year or so later. Like I said, I think the group's pretty much defunct, outside of a banner here or there. (Again, correct me if I'm wrong....)

I also found a lot of readers coming from Chicago Cubs fansites. I'm a big Cubs fan, and was heartened to find others who shared my point of view with the team--a skeptical sort of Charlie Brown optimism...we'd seen a lot of bad Cubs teams, and wanted them to do better. It was through my unofficial affiliation with the "Cub Nation" or "Cubs Blog Army" that I met up with such guys as the Uncouth Sloth, who's posting here, from time to time.

Anyway, here's a post that illustrates all three of those points, as I worked part time with the first, talked Cubs with the second, and was par tof the Rocky Top Brigade with the third....

Hey, Jerky! Look at these sites!

First, I'd like to call attention to the Tennessee Overhill, dedicated to the preservation of the artistic and cultural heritage of Southeast Tennessee. My friends Diane and Shyam work there. We helped each other out this week (they by paying me money, and me by toting heavy things).

But they do good work over there.

Secondly, I got a couple of nice comments from Let's Play Two, a Cubs blog. The proprietor said this site was funny, which means he's either easily amused or terribly bored. Just the same, his site's a good read, especially if you're a Cub fan.

And lastly (but not leastly), in the new additions to the Rocky Top Brigade, I saw Straight White Guy. A funny site with a little commentary out of the right wing. He caught my eye, because he blogs out of Etowah, which is in McMinn County, which is where I was born. Etowah (which, coincidentally, is where Tennessee Overhill finds its headquarters), is a fine, fine town. Lots of old storefronts.

Although Roadway trucks will damn near run a feller over in Etowah, if he's not careful.

It's 10:26. The Cubs are leading the Braves 2-0 in the sixth.

Evolution, Or Revolution: A meme in 5 parts

Evolution, or Revolution: A Meme in 5 parts

Tish tagged me with this meme, and Honest to God, it got me to thinking.

I'll post my answers in five separate posts. Mostly because I feel like it.

I've been doing this little hobby of mine for 5+ years, now. In that time, I've met a few cool people, I've learned a few things I'd probably not have learned, and I've written a lot of drivel.

A lot of drivel.

The meme asks this: Find Five posts of yours that track the evolution of your blog.

I gave this thing more thought than I probably should have.

I've asked a couple people about this, and truth be told, there's not been a lot of change in the blog itself.

I follow the Hank Hill Lawncare way of thinking when it comes to blogging. I paraphrase: A person's got to have something that's his, and his alone. And my blog? It's whatever I want it to be. By and large, whatever I post is whatever's running through my head.

I've never come to this game with a long-lasting agenda. There are phases, and I think I can track that, to a degree. But generally speaking, I'm not sure how much the direction or timbre of the blog have changed from their original direction. Who knows: Maybe I'll be surprised....

1. I started this thingamablog back in those storied days of 2002. A friend had given me the address of an odd blog full of left-wing conspiracies. I showed the site to my roommate, and he commented that he had a blog on "blogspot." He showed me what it was. The date was November 13, 2002, and I would go on for a couple months spouting brainisms like "Burger King needs to change their meat" and "If you ignore Rob Schneider, he'll go away." Both have proven largely true.

Most of my early posts were short, and disjointed. Not a lot there...most of them, not even titled. Just a dispatch from the ether, a link to the odd thoughts that run through my head. There's little theme to the blog then. Often I was posting just to continue a streak of posting. I give, as an example, this one, from Friday, December 20, 2002, about a month after I started the blog:

I wish that in America, instead of deer, we had a breed of ape that ran wild through our forests. But not one of those violent, strong and somewhat intelligent apes like you see on Animal Planet. Just stupid, jumpy apes that were as skittish around people as our deer are today.

I know I'm only supposed to link to five, but for this first part, I'll put one larger post up, to show that there's always been silly shit.

I've always put silly stuff up. But the first one that really got any response from people outside my circle of friends who were reading the crap I put up was this one, in response to the Music City Marathon, from April of 2003:

I skipped work today to go run in the Country Music Marathon. Alas, I didn't win, though I did have my own personal best time: 3:13:19. This beats my best time in the Country Music Marathon. Three years ago, I ran a 4:00:04, and two years ago, a 3:29:39. Last year, I was lucky enough to run in the Boston Marathon, but while I stretched, I pulled my hamstring, and was only about to go a couple of miles before the pain was too much.

Now, when I say marathon, it's not an actual 26.2 miles. It's more like 26, because I don't like to pay little things like entry fees. They want me to pay to run? Screw that. Actually, it's kind of funny. I have a little number sheet that I tape to my unitard, and it says "Screw That!"

So, I jump in about a quarter of a mile in or so, after they've stopped watching the lines so closely. I get in the pack and just run.

Let me talk for a second about my running style. I call it "Guerilla Tactics," not only for the way I enter the race, but also for the psychological edge is gives me over the other runners. It's divided into five phases.

The first phase is called "Small Talk."

After I jump the rail, I make my way into the middle of the pack, keeping pace, which is at that point in the marathon a quick jog.

Usually, I'll start weeding out a few people. Run along side them for a little while. Make small talk. Ask if they want to run and grab a burger after the race. Ask if jamming marshmellows up my butt counts as "carbo-loading." Challenge them to races, and in general make a nuisance of myself.

That's phase one. It's called Small Talk.

Phase two begins at around the three mile mark. It's called "Police Chase."

At this point, a lot of the runners are starting to hit "the zone."

You have no idea how much "the zone" pisses me off. Because they aren't actually ignoring you just to ignore you. They're ignoring you because they're so intent on what it is they're doing and what they're trying to do, that they enter "the zone" and the rest of the world becomes a distant blur. I have absolutely no tolerance for that kind of arrogance.

As we hit the three mile mark, I announce that I'll take the point, and that "I'll see you losers later."

A lot of things happen at once. First, I hyperventilate. Then, I start screaming at the top of my lungs. Then, I'll break into a full sprint, and run madly to the front of the crowd, as if being chased, arms pinwheeling wildly, screaming the whole while.

Then comes phase 3. It's called "Taser."

In phase three, after I've run full bore for about two miles, I've jumped out to the lead of the marathon, passing all those Kenyans and Russians.

I hit roughly the 5 mile mark, where I stop on the side of the road, throw up and pass out due to exertion.

Then comes phase four. "Serious Runner."

Sometimes I manage to wipe off the vomit. Actually, that's a lie. Usually, I wake up after about fifteen minutes, and I re-join the race. This phase is the longest, as it goes from mile 5 to mile 25. During this phase, I cry.

I cry about a lot of things. The state of the world today. The shambles that is my social life. The price of petrol. But mostly I cry about the tremendous pain and exertion.

Quick Big Stupid Tommy Fact: I lose more water due to tears and mucus than I do actually sweating.

Then comes phase 5: "Robocop."

For the final mile or so, I imagine that I'm a robot, except that I was once a cop, and that I'm chasing the man (Clarence Boddicker) who killed me once. My murder led to my turning into the robot. And I'll catch him if only I keep running one more mile. And when I catch him, I'll arrest him. And regain a little bit of my humanity. Plus, I pretend that I have a gun that comes out of a holster on my hip.

I really need to work on phase 5. Perhaps I could hire Kurtwood Smith to be at the finish line for me. But so deep am I in my delusions that I'd probably do something really horrible and not just arrest him. However, as things stand now, I'm usually pretty despondant, because there's nobody there for me to arrest.

Thus I do not regain my humanity.

Usually, I'm carted to a local hospital for rehydration afterward. Usually the "doctors" give me "advice" like "don't run any more marathons" and "you're foolish."

Then, I eat like 8 bags of potato chips. And get ready for next year.

One day, I'll be Kenyan.
Yeah. The silliness never starts.

Foot in the Mouth

Foot in the Mouth

Once upon a time, I worked for the folks at Goodwill. And one of the girls who worked in the back of one of the stores was talking about the babies going to see their grandmother over the previous weekend. And she'd talked about this a couple times, and I'd just assumed that she was referring to her taking her kids up to see her mother.

Then it hit me that she wasn't referring to her kids, but rather, her grandkids.

And rather than letting my brain do the math, my big dumb mouth opens and out comes: "Candy, what do you mean grandkid? You're not much older than me!"

With the self-righteous indignation that seems reserved for those raising 3 kids on welfare in a trailer park, she says, with the utmost of haught in her voice "I'm thirty-two!"

I was right around 26 at the time, and it floored me. To know that the 32-year-old woman (who did not look 32--she easily passed for early 20's), was a grandmother twice over. She went on to explain (with something that wasn't quite pride, yet wasn't far from it) that she'd had her daughter when she was 15, and her daughter had her first kid at 15, and a second at 16.

This story made me think of that, this cool December morning....

Stuff I don't want to happen to me. Ever

Stuff I don't want to happen to me. Ever.

Those ever-lovin' scientists have been screwing around with nature again, so worried about whether they could, they didn't stop to think about whether or not they should.

(Guess who watched Jurassic Park this week. God Bless that Ian Malcolm.)

But it seems they've copied the process Jewel Wasps use to zombify cockroaches, thusly turning them into walking incubators for larvae, that burrow around in their innards, until they're ready to be born.

Zombies? I think I could deal with that. Granted, I've never actually fought the undead, but with a shotgun and a katana? I think I'd be alright.

However, I'm not sure all the katanas in the world could stave off wasps that implant their larvae in me.

Want to drive your old pal Tommy insane? Want to turn him into a complete slobbering, gibbering mess? Find a movie that features bugs crawling around under the skin of a person. Or a video of that bug being pulled out from under the skin.

Horror movie, or National Geographic documentary, or 34 second Youtube clip, I cannot handle it. My mind will overload, and shut down. I do not like the idea of things crawling around inside me. Muchly. Muchly, muchly.

Alien? Scariest mother-humping movie ever.

When Khan puts the thing in Chekhov's ear, in Star Trek II? Mortifying.

And in The Mist? Yeah. A guy explodes into a million spiders.

My mind is still screaming.....

So. To wrap this thing up: Science needs to stop. If your first instinct when you hear an idea is to run screaming into the first iron pike you can find? Maybe it's an avenue you guys shouldn't be exploring.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Thoughts on a Sunday

Thoughts on a Sunday

Huh? Sunday?

Well, Tommy had the weekend off, which came as something of a surprise. A pleasant one. Not one like finding out not only that werewolves are real, but that your significant other is one, just before you're disappeared down the gullet of said werewolf, and your absence is referred to by the media simply as "another mysterious disappearance in East Tennessee."

Wandered up toward Knoxville for a little while yesterday. Needed to make sure I had some geat to properly attire myself for work. Needed to see if I could find a little Christmas giving inspiration in-store.

The work clothes? A problem fairly easily solved, though let me lament the fact that just when I thought it was hard enough to find clothes that a normal, 30-year-old white guy wants to wear, you know, out in public, I hadn't recently shopped at a clothing store the first weekend of the biggest gift-giving month out of the year. The laws of supply and demand were in active fluctuation this weekend. Cargo pants with hammer loops and pockets for your mp3 player? 3 for a dollar. A straight legged pair of khaki pants? Ask your server for a quote.

The stressful part of the trip done, I wandered toward Best Buy, to maybe find a couple gifting ideas. I did the bulk of my holiday shopping a month ago, a binge on getting it done. Those goods are currently sitting in the box they were shipped in, in my kitchen. And there they'll stay until December 24th, when in a crazed frenzy brought on by my realization and loathing of my own procrastination, they get wrapped with much the same skill as your average thumb amputee.

The trip to Best Buy brought some good ideas. Only one purchase, which in spite of the season, was for myself. I think another trip to Amazon is in order, though. I will say that the Murphy's Law Corollary that deals with in-store help? It was in full effect. I can't usually sling a handful of gravel in Best Buy without some dude in a blue shirt pestering me. But when you actually want to find out if something is still in print? Good friggin' luck.

And that handful of gravel-slinging is muchly why I have to do my shopping online these days.


I'd like to break the monotony of my weekend life recap by listing, in order from most to least favorite, the Golden Girls:

1.) Dorothy Zbornak
2.) Rose Nyland
3.) Blanche Devereaux
4.) Sofia Petrillo

I would like to note that coming in fourth is by no means a damnation of the character of Sofia, or her portrayal by the late Estelle Getty. It's just how the cards fell, in this particular instance.

Now, if they were fighting, I think I'd take Sofia over them all.


Spent the evening at my folks' watching the slobberknocker between Tennessee and LSU go down. I had no rooting interest in particular. I just like a hard-hitting football game. And that was a hard-hitting game. Or, as Jim Ross would say, a Slobberknocker.

I have little else to say about the football game. I just like saying the word Slobberknocker.

Your mission for tomorrow is to work the word "Slobberknocker" into your every day conversation.


Took the morning to take in my Best Buy purchase, Bender's Big Score.

Let me take a minute to say that Futurama got dicked. At the time of its cancellation, it was head and shoulders above both The Simpsons and Family Guys being produced at the same time. More consistently funny. And episode-to-episode, a great percentage of the show stands up to multiple viewings far better than either show.

And frankly, Fox's track record for keeping the consistently funny shows on the air? They're batting something like .077. There's a Family Guy joke about it, but it would kinda derail my whole argument by bringng it up.

Bender's Big Score though? I liked it. Not their best effort (there's too much of a Family Guy influence to make the offhand reference, and then show you the punchline, instead of letting you work for it), but definitely a welcome return...


The rest of the weekend? More football. With beer. At The Fox and Hound down in Chattamanooga. With the brother-in-law.

Made plans to wander down to Chattanooga early next week, as the Bijou is showing A Christmas Story on the big screen. Trying to find out if there are advance ticket sales. I've probably seen the movie just about as many times as I've seen any other flick, but I've never caught it on the big screen. Owing to that I was, like, 6 when it came out.

My buddy Steven saw it, on the big screen. But he's several months older than I am.

Speaking of Steven, he's giving Blogging another shot. The Acme of Foolishness is up and running again. Go give Steven a visit. His favorite Golden Girl is Rose Nylund. Don't hold it against him.

Winterizing your cat

Winterizing your Cat

Winter can be rough on cats, so unless you live in a warm or moderate climate, here's a list of things you can do to make sure your vehicle is ready for the upcoming cold season.

Things You'll Need:

Windshield Wiper Fluid
Wiper Blades
Kitty Litters
Small Snow Shovels
Auto Emergency Kits
Ice Scrapers
Tire Gauges


1. Don't put off a 30,000-mile full service, if your cat is due.

2. Flush the cat's cooling system and replace the coolant.

3. Replace the cat's windshield wiper blades. Put windshield washer fluid in the cat's windshield washer reservoir (plain water will freeze).

4. Have the cat's battery serviced (clean the battery terminal ends and add water) and load-tested to check its ability to hold a charge. If the battery is more than 4 1/2 years old, replace it.

5. Use a tire gauge to check the tire pressure. Air contracts with cold, and the tires may become low as the temperature drops.

6. Make sure there is air in the spare tire and that all the proper tire-changing equipment is in the cat's trunk.

7. Make sure your cat's tires are in good condition. If you are not sure what this means, ask a mechanic (in a shop that doesn't sell tires) for an opinion.

8. Check the cat's lights, heater and defroster.

9. Keep the cat's gas tank as full as possible to prevent moisture from freezing in the gas lines.

10. Get a brake check if your cat hasn't had one in the last six months.

11. Put together an emergency winter kit for the trunk of your cat: blanket, extra boots and gloves, ice scraper, small snow shovel, flashlight and kitty litter (for traction when stuck in the snow).

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Saturday, December 01, 2007

Footprints of the Yeti

Footprints of the Yeti

TV producers find intriguing footprints on Everest.

What I like to think is that the three footprints are something like three butt-prints where staffers were sitting, or the footprints of one terribly large (and somewhat awkward) intern, who has accompanied the crew out to the Himalayas....



Not much to say about the passing of Evel Knievel, except to say that for a short time in my life, shortly after running a friend's four-wheeler into the back of my parents' pickup truck, I was dubbed "Awful K'Nawful."

I've never told anybody this: I didn't get the reference until quite a few years later.

Somehow, the Evel influence didn't come by my house.

Tommy needum sleep.