Sunday, January 31, 2016

An Offer

Alright.  Here's the deal.

I go back to work tomorrow, after being on vacation this week.

I work for 3 weeks, and then I go on vacation again.

Here's what I want.

How about one of you go in my place for the next three weeks?

I'll take those weeks off, and finish up some writing I'm trying to do.

Then, after those three weeks...and really, it's not even 3 weeks, it's like 18 days...that's like 2.5 weeks....I'm scheduled for that vacation, and after that vacation, I'll return to work, refreshed, renewed and reinvigorated after a five-week break?

You can have my salary.

That's the deal.

You can have my salary, for each of those days you work for me*.

You won't need a disguise.  Get this:  for years and years I scoffed at the whole idea that Clark Kent could hide behind a pair of glasses to disguise himself from the general public.  Me?  If I get a haircut, I'll have customers who've seen me at that store twice a week for the past four years come up and say to me "you must be new here."

They won't notice.  Maybe shave yourself a baldspot.  Other than that?  You'll be good to go.

There are roughly 108 little things you have to do for my job, but to be really convincing, you just need to look vaguely frustrated, but not yell at customers.  Remember:  Do Not Yell at Customers!

I'm not going to feed you any stuff about the customer being right all the time.  We could debate that mess until the cows come home and regale of us stories of their time away at Cow College (otherwise called The University of Tennessee).  The customer isn't right.  The customer is simply the customer.  Treat them with respect.  And if they are wrong?  Tell them, politely.

Do not take your pants off!  That's a rule, too.  No matter how aggravated a customer gets you, do not take your pants off in front of them.  For any reason.  I know it's tempting.  Just don't.

Anyway.  You get my salary.  I make some headway into this writing project.  You get valuable experience working like a botard.  I get to sleep when my body's biological rhythms tell me to sleep.  Nobody takes their pants off in front of customers.  I cannot stress how important this part is.  Just don't do it.

It's win-win.

Any takers?

*In the interest of Full Disclosure:  I make $1 per day, plus all the water I can drink.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016


Shyam and I wandered over to Fall Creek Falls for a couple of days.  Her schedule and mine are difficult to coordinate.  Generally speaking, her busiest time of the year is my slowest, and my busiest is her slowest.  January, February are generally the only months where we can guarantee being able to get a few days off together.

We chose Fall Creek Falls for its relative proximity, and for being able to bring Mongo with us.  Mongo being, of course, her dog.

A quiet few days.  We had some winter weather blow through last weekend, the bottom end of Winter Storm Jonas.  It was an odd one.  We live in an area where we can look at forecasts from both Chattanooga and Knoxville.  It seemed like we had seven different forecasts heading into the weekend, ranging from rain and no snow to somewhere between 8 and 12 inches of accumulated snow.

We ended up with about two inches up at Casa de Big Stupid Tommy, which certainly didn't seem worth all the tumult and fuss leading up to it.  Seriously, Southeast Tennessee...let's get a grip when it comes to snow.

Anyway, it was storm that depended much on the temperature.  A couple of degrees cooler, and we could easily have ended up with a half-foot on the ground.  As Fall Creek Falls did.

We arrived a couple days after the snow, but it was still laying.  Mongo loves the snow.  So that was a plus.

We did a couple wanders.  It had started to melt can see in a couple pictures the opposite bank, which receives more direct sun, the snow's almost completely gone.

That night, the rain passed through and melted off all but the stubbornest snow piles.  Around lunchtime, a great fog rolled in.

We wandered across one person, during our wandering through snow and fog.  He complimented Shyam's hockey stick.  Beyond that, we didn't see another soul for nearly 48 hours.

It was perfect.

My minor resolution for 2016 was to take a few more trips.  Recharge.

Twas good, campers.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Krystal and Shrimp

Well, it seems as if Krystal is test marketing some shrimp entrees.

Krystal is such a high risk, low reward proposition in general that they should rate items on their menu based on the likelihood that you'll be racing the Devil for the commode some time in the next 6 hours.  That said, it's something of a small wonder that we never managed to pair up the cockroach of the sea with Krystal.

I'll not rush out to try these entrees.  I like my shrimp, from time to time, only slightly more often than I am tempted by Krystal.  When that happens, I generally get three or four of the little mustardy cousins of the White Castle.  That happens once a year, or so, and usually when I know I will be someplace the next day unencumbered by obstacles or appointments that might keep me from a clear shot to the restroom.

So, no.  No thank you.  You may have your shrimps.  More for you, says I.

Last thought, and this is apropos of nothing:  Suttree's titular character makes a stop at a Krystal while coming back from his kid's funeral, in that book.  Cormac McCarthy knew these parts well.

Saturday, January 16, 2016

More Stupid Bullshit

Well, the Titans hired interim coach Mike Mularkey, removing the interim from his job title.

Marcus Mariota, in this lovely article from Titans Online, is happy.

"To have consistency I feel is important."

Alright, Yoda.

Tell me if consistency is important when you've finished another 3-13 season, and are vying for a third straight Top 5 draft pick.

A poor move, made by an ownership that doesn't care.

It takes a lot for me to leave a team.

An apathetic ownership will do it, though.

Friday, January 15, 2016

The Revenant

Don't read this post if you don't want parts of The Revenant spoiled for you.

Just a couple quick thoughts, before I head to bed.

1.)  How Coleman missed out on having the Pinto Sleeping Bag Revenant Tie-In, I don't have a clue.
2.)  I want to watch the movie again to see which has a higher representation, phallic or vaginal symbolism.  (I have a guess.  I just want to keep score).

3.)  There's an alternate Universe where Leonardo DiCaprio rasps, as he's cut the horse open, "I thought....they smelled bad....on the outside....."

4.)  Is it possible that I enjoy Domhnall Gleeson's work more than I do his father's?  I just wouldn't have thought that possible.

5.)  It's a beautiful flick, and deserves attention.  Definitely worth seeing on the big screen.

Wednesday, January 06, 2016

A thought

Went to a visitation tonight.  Good guy that went to the same church we went to when I was growing up.  He passed away this week.  I spent a lot of time thinking about him today, which surprised me, because I'd only run into him a handful of times in the past 20 years, and few in the past ten, as his health declined.  Still, he was in my thoughts quite a bit today.

John Cooley was a good guy, though.

I was a weird kid.

Not completely weird.   Not in the weirdo setting fires in Old Lady Semple's mailbox kind of way.   Just a curly-headed, heavyset, bookish kid who grew up to 6'3" by the time he was 12.  I probably wasn't that weird.  I felt weird, though.  I felt like I stood out like a sore thumb.  Even among friends, I sometimes felt like an outsider.  I guess all kids feel that way.

I still feel that way, sometimes.  I guess we all do.

John had a way, though.

He never made me feel like I was weird.  He made me feel like part of the group.  He made everybody feel like part of the group.

He was genuinely interested.

He always had a joke and was ready to talk to you about anything.

It may not have meant a thing in the world to him, an adult treating a quiet kid on unsure footing like he was just one of the guys.  It was just his way.  I always appreciated him for that.  The world needs more people like that.

Tuesday, January 05, 2016

The Wheel of Calamity

It turns, and it turns and it turns.

Spent some time outside, flipping that Cheshire Cat Moon a good bird or two, and screaming obscenities at it until my throat was raw.

As one does.

Man.  It's like the holiday season had diarrhea, and we're still cleaning that shit up on January 5....