Friday, June 30, 2006
A couple of years ago, I heard about this really cool microwave/conventional oven. Basically, in addition to being a microwave oven and (more or less) a rather large toaster oven, this seemingly incredible über-oven was also a bread-maker, cake-maker, and rotisserie – all for around $250. Now, our kitchen is on the smallish side, so anytime a company makes an “all-in-one” product, I’m listening with both ears. By the way, this product was featured on one of those home-shopping stations. I won’t give you the name, but the company promises Quality, Value, and Convenience.
I decided to go online and place the order for this oven, and am put on a waiting list – no big deal. They won’t charge my credit card until the oven is delivered (this was a few days after Halloween, 2004). I am told that I could be on the waiting list for up to 3 months – again, I’m not concerned – a product this good I can wait for. I routinely checked the website to see the status, and right around Christmas time, the website says that the product has been shipped, and I can expect it sometime after January 1. I am jumping out of my skin at this point – I can’t wait to have this thing in my house, even though I probably will never make bread nor cake – just telling friends that I could, if I wanted to, would be awesome.
So, January 1 comes and goes. Then, the 5th comes and goes, and then finally on January 10, I call the place. The customer service rep says that this is common, and I should wait until January 17 – if the Intellichef is not at my doorstep on that day, I should call back. Well, January 17 comes, and still no oven. I call the place again, and the customer service rep says that she will reimburse me my money … I’m not satisfied, because I want the Swiss-army-oven, dammit! The lady says she could put me on the waiting list again. Steam was beginning to come out of my ears – I said that if I am put on the waiting list again, at the very least, I should be put at the top of it, because I had been on the list before. No dice. So, I was put on the list again … at the bottom.
So, three months go by, and I am still on the waiting list. I contact the customer service rep, and she says that it is a popular item and that I could be on for a little while. Then, 6 months go by, and still nothing. I begin to think that this company probably thinks that I screwed them out of the last microwave and I’m trying to get a second one for free. I call the customer service rep again, and ask her if I should just move on with my life – and she says “No, you’ll definitely get it.” 9 months go by, and still no microwave. Again, I call the customer service rep and ask her if I should just expect that I’m never going to get this microwave. Once again, the lady told me to be patient. It’s been about 12 months – I think I’ve demonstrated how patient I can be. Ghandi would be jealous ….probably not.
About a week after this, I got an e-mail from the company saying that they would not be able to fulfill my order. I was livid. I wrote them a real nasty letter saying stuff like “I thought you stood for Quality, Value, and Convenience – I received none of these.” I thought the company would at least acknowledge this, and offer me some kind of coupon for %20 off – but alas, I never heard from them again. Jerks.
Tuesday, June 27, 2006
Speaking of laughs, I almost got caught “self-satisfying” myself tonight by my wife. I played it off cool, saying that I was checking for computer viruses and spyware, but man, I didn’t even hear her coming upstairs. How embarrassing would that have been? Now, I don’t do this very often, but sometimes I just have to – I’m sure you know what I mean (don’t lie).
This gave me the idea for the topic “Caught in the Act.” I encourage you to provide any stories that you are willing to tell as well.
One time, I was fooling around with a former girlfriend. This was when I was still in college, and she came to my house for New Years. My parents had a party to go to across the street, and we were planning on going to a friend’s house to bring in the new year. Before we left, we decided we’d get one last “poke” in before the new year.
Well, we were in the basement, in the middle of the passion, when she said she swore she heard something upstairs. I, with no blood in my brain, told her that she was imagining things, and to just enjoy the moment. Then, I definitely heard something – creaking upstairs, and a door open. Oh, shit! Neither of us were clothed, and the clothes were all over the basement (don’t ask).
We quickly got some articles of clothing on – but underwear was still laying around the basement. Thankfully, my dad did not make his way downstairs … but I’m guessing he may have heard something, and decided it was best not to investigate. I’m not sure what I would’ve done – probably wouldn’t have been able to look dad in the eyes for a good while.
Ahhh, the memories.
Sunday, June 25, 2006
1. I decided to watch “Mr. 3000” today, not because I heard it was a good movie, and not because I like Bernie Mac. Nope, the reason I watched it is because I tend to like sports movies. I didn’t go into this flick with the mindset that it was going to blow me away, and it ended up being average at best. A couple of points I wanted to make about the movie. First, the team they focused on was the Milwaukee Brewers, and if you know anything about baseball, you know that Bob Uecker is the announcer for the Brew Crew’s games. However, in the movie, Dick Enberg was the announcer. Even though I like Enberg, there is no way you can do a movie about the Brewers and not have Uecker announce. Secondly, this was a movie about the Milwaukee Brewers – and it is hard to really put your feelings behind this team – mainly because their owner has made a joke out of Major League Baseball. One would think that a team named for beer would be more popular, but for some reason this is not the case.
2. It seems like with each passing day it is becoming harder and harder to be a Phillies fan (let alone a Philadelphia sports fan). As most of you probably know, Brett Myers was involved in an incident in which he “allegedly” beat the crap out of his wife outside of a bar in Boston. Myers was one of the few bright spots as far as Phillies pitching goes. He is a home-grown talent - not that he grew up here, but he came through the minor league system, something that has been a rarity in Phillies baseball. Many fans have already turned their backs on Myers, and rightfully so. He needs to do a whole lot of apologizing and therapy sessions just to get the fans to give him a second chance. So, what does he say before yesterday’s game? "I'm sorry it had to get public, that's it. Of course, it's embarrassing." Sorry about it going public? I joked prior to this statement that Myers should’ve kept this spousal abuse behind closed doors. Apparently, he agrees. The man is beyond repulsive now, and fits in perfectly with the collapse of the franchise. I am embarrassed that he is on this team. I am embarrassed that the team let him pitch on Saturday. I am just plain embarrassed with this team in general.
3. I’m going to the Sammy Hagar concert this Saturday at the Tweeter Center in Camden. Just a few thoughts about this. First, the Tweeter Center is an excellent place to see a concert – if you ever get a chance, I suggest that you go. However, the location of the Tweeter Center is not the greatest. The center probably would’ve been located in Philly if we didn’t have a corrupt government and union running this city. Additionally, the Camden Aquarium and even the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame probably would’ve been housed in the “City of Brotherly Love” had it not been for the unions in the city. I’m not a union basher, by any means. I think they serve a purpose as long as they don’t get too powerful and corrupt (obviously). It’s been said before, but something needs to be done. As far as Sammy Hagar goes, I really enjoy his music. I liked him as a solo artist, and I also enjoyed him as the front-man for Van Halen (I won’t go into the “Sammy or Dave” topic, because (a) that could be a blog entry on its own, and (b) I am one of the few that like both probably equally). He puts on a great show, and interacts well with the fan. I have seen him with Van Halen (twice), and touring with David Lee Roth on another occasion (Roth looks older than mud at this point). The show should be a great way to kick of 4th of July weekend!
Friday, June 23, 2006
I left work early one Friday (back in the spring of 2004, to be exact), in order to meet the cable guy, who was coming to install internet cable at home - we got a great deal from
the local cable company - free installation, $9.99 a month for the first 4 months, and then $19.99 a month for 8 months. The company said the guy would be out between 2 and 5 p.m. (typical cable window, ruins part or most of the day for ya) - he actually came out at 2:30, which, if you research hard enough, is the all-time record for cable service. The cable guy assessed the situation, and since we had put up ceiling tiles in the basement, he could no longer really go through the basement to install the cable internet. Instead, he decided it would be best to install it around the house and through the office on the second floor - which was fine by me (as long as I got the high-speed cable). So, the cable guy got the ladder, and began the installation process. He wrapped the cable around the outside of the house (underneath the aluminum siding so it didn't look stupid).
Now, here is where the story took a bit of a turn. I was in the living room, watching T.V., and I hear this loud boom. Instead of going to check and see the cause of this horrible noise, I decided to ignore it and continue watching Doc Hollywood. I did this because (A) Doc Hollywood is a pretty good movie (and the naked scene was coming up), and (B) I figured that if I ignored the boom, it would go away. Unfortunately, it didn't. About 5 minutes later, the cable guy walked into the house and said, "I had a little bit of an accident." I responded, "Are you o.k.?" The reply from him was not what I had anticipated. He said, "I'm fine.” Then a dramatic pause, followed by the blood-curdling phrase “but I fell on the roof of your car." What?!?!?!??!?!?!?!?! I thought that this surely had to be a mistake, but it wasn't. Sure enough, when I walked out to my car, there was this big ass dent on the roof of my car.
The cable guy had already phoned his supervisor, and was instructed to stay there while the supervisor came out to pick him up for a drug test (Company rule, apparently). Supposedly, the supervisor also instructed the cable guy to ask me for my toilet plunger, so he could try to "suck" out the dent. My toilet plunger wasn't working great - the handle kept coming off of the rubber thingy, but the good news is that he clamped it, and now my toilet plunger is as good as new. The bad news is that the toilet plunger didn't work on the big ass dent (Worse news, I had used it the night before on a clogged toilet, and the cable guy was licking his finger to apply moisture to the plunger – I wondered if he figured out what was for dinner the night before?). The supervisor came out, picked up the cable guy, and left me with the cable van and a key
to it - instructing me that a second supervisor would come by and finish the job and assess the damage. Wouldn't it have been great if I went in the van and got myself some digital boxes and modems? I'm too much of a guilty German for that, but oh well.
So, the second supervisor eventually stops by, assesses the damage, and installs the cable. As he is surveying the previous cable guy’s work, he says something along the lines of “That guy did great work – he is one of our best workers.” I could only think to myself, “Yes, I agree whole-heartedly – I think the ass-dent on the roof of my car is one of the best pieces of work I’ve ever seen.”) He tells me to get an estimate and the cable company’s insurance company would handle it from there. The estimate, by the way was around $2,000, which was probably way more than what my car was worth.
Also, I think I've developed my clumsiness into super human powers. I can actually transfer my clumsiness through walls to other people. I could be called "Captain Clumsy," or something like that, and be a new member of the "Mystery Men" (you'll get it if you saw the movie). Anyway, I obviously wasn’t thrilled with the end result, although I was $2,000 richer, so I guess it wasn’t that bad. By the way, I’ve taken note that a car with an ass-dent in the roof is much easier to find in a mall parking lot.
Please, share any of your own disappointments, if you have any.
Tuesday, June 20, 2006
1. I’m excited for the new Superman movie that will be released in a few weeks. I am a little concerned though, because the last time I was really excited to see a movie, it was King Kong, and that movie never even got close to living up to the hype. It was 3+ hours of cool CGI, but it dragged on and I thought Jack Black was a poor choice for this flick.
2. I’ve been listening to a group called The Sounds a lot lately. They are a female group, and they pack a cool punch. Some of my friends say the sound is a little too poppy, but I’m o.k. with that. They have a neat mix of punk, power pop, and just a dash of Modern Rock. Give ‘em a spin.
3. I saw the movie Deuce Bigalow – the European Gigolo this weekend, and was thoroughly disappointed. I enjoyed the first one, and was hoping this one could follow in its footsteps. The jokes were poor, the comedic timing sucked, and they recycled far too many jokes from the first one. It got me to thinkin’, which sequels to original movies were as good or better than the first. I came up with Empire Strikes Back, the Godfather Part 2, and Airplane 2. Any others?
4. Congrats to the Carolina Hurricanes for winning the Stanley Cup. I hope this increases hockey’s popularity in historically “un-hockey” areas. It was bittersweet watching 3 ex-Flyers hoist the cup, and makes me really question whether or not Bob Clarke will ever bring a cup back to Philly. Of course, I have this question about all of Philly’s teams at this point.
5. I see a ton of Sonic Fast Food restaurant commercials on TV – it makes me want to try the place out. However, I think the closest Sonic is in Virginia, which makes me wonder why the hell this place is advertised in Philly … now, I know that these are probably national ads, but still.
Sunday, June 18, 2006
My father helped develop my sense of humor and appreciation for comedy at a very young age – I remember many a weekend watching Laurel and Hardy, The Three Stooges, and Abbott and Costello with my Pop. Any night that Benny Hill or the Muppets were on, I was sure to get a seat next to dad and giggle at the goofiness.
My appreciation for sports was also encouraged by my dad at a very young age. He took me to countless Phillies and Flyers games as a youngster, and even drove me to the Meadowlands to see Pele play – one of the greatest sports highlights I ever witnessed. I never became the great soccer player my dad was, and even though he sometimes got frustrated at my play, in the end, he was happy with me just enjoying the game.
One thing I can’t understand, though. My dad is a technical genius. He can put things together in no time. He can build just about anything he can put his mind to. Heck, he once made a television from scratch. I have trouble replacing light bulbs. For some reason, I never picked up that technical “Green Thumb” that my dad has. But, thankfully, he is willing to come over and help me with any and all projects I have with my house. Maybe God deliberately made me technically illiterate just so dad and I can spend more time together.
Happy Father’s Day, dad.
Friday, June 16, 2006
First of all, she is dressed as if she is a pregnant southern stripper – in that she has a see-through top, and a really short dress. Is this the way you are going to positively change your image, Brittany? This will be about as successful as an of the Vanilla Ice comeback attempts. Are we supposed to take you seriously when you dress like this? If this was your publicist’s idea, then I’d fire him/her on the spot.
Second, she is chewing gum during the interview. Hey Brit, why don’t just start doing some chew, while you’re at it? If I was Matt Lauer, I would’ve pulled my pants down and urinated on her – it probably would’ve cleaned her up a little bit. Brit, this is a national interview – is this really the way you want to be portrayed? Do you think the gum-chewing makes people relate with you more? If anything, it makes you look like a pregnant fourth grader.
And the hair and makeup? It looks like a clown squirted her in the face with a giant bottle of seltzer water. Again, Brittany, this is a national interview designed to change people’s opinion of you. After seeing you like this, I expected you to bring out your pet pig Wilbur that you like to sleep with in the pen.
But your looks and outfit cannot compete with the feces that kept dribbling from you mouth the entire interview. Matt Lauer looked like he got hit by a train at the end of this one. “My dad used to sit me on his lap when he drove – we’re country.” My goodness, these “insightful” words should be set in marble in front of some famous landmark – that is how powerful these words are. Brit, you really should be schooled by somebody on how to answer questions about your retardedness (I hesitate to use this word, because I don’t want to offend any retards). Times were different even 25 years ago regarding seatbelt and child safety seat laws, so it may have once been sort of acceptable to drive with your baby on your lap (probably not, but let’s give Brit the benefit of the doubt).
Now that you are a famous (still scratching my head) music star, making millions upon millions of dollars, you should know better than to drive a car with a baby on your lap – an explanation like “We’re Country” is just not going to cut it … at least if your goal is to be taken seriously. The more I think about the interview, the more I begin to realize that she doesn’t want to be taken seriously, and that this is probably the only way people will still give a flying f*ck about her. Maybe in her own demented way, she is a genius … probably not.
Wednesday, June 14, 2006
Seriously, can the French do anything else at this point to make people hate them more? I guess we should call Quebec “France Light,” it’s not really a French colony … yet. But, why do this at all? Is the rest of Canada really that bad? I went to Toronto a few years ago, and thought it was a great city.
Maybe, the rest of Canada is too much like the U.S. at this point, and these frogs don’t want to be a part of it anymore. Maybe, Michael Jackson is behind this, and wants to move to Quebec, but only if they are no longer a part of Canada. I’m not really sure what the reason, but I do know that I like the French even less now.
Is speaking a different language than most of Canada a good enough reason to become a separate country? I say that it is not. Geez, if that was the issue, Florida, and most of California would be part of either Spain or Mexico (hey-yo!).
Most likely, it is because this Quebecers suffer from the illness known as “French Elitinitis.” Symptoms include shortness of size, rapid hair-growth in the armpit and leg areas of women, and an odor resembling feet … not to mention decreased penis size.
Since I haven’t researched the whole separatist movement issue in France, these are the only reasons I could come up with off the top of my head. So, I have a very negative opinion of the Quebecers. I’m hoping you can provide me better reasons as to why these frogs no longer want to be a part of Canada.
Monday, June 12, 2006
Now let me lay out my side on this for you. Personally, it wouldn’t bother me one way or the other. But, do we have to mandate a rule like this? Shouldn’t it be up to restaurant and bar owners? For instance, in Philly, there are quite a few restaurants and bars that do not permit smoking. They have a decent-sized customer base because of this (well, this is one of the main reasons – hopefully they serve good food and drink as well). If the state decided to ban smoking in bars and restaurants, wouldn’t this affect these owners negatively? They no longer have that “advantage” over other places.
I understand the second-hand smoke issue, I really do. But, if there are restaurants and bars that do not allow smoking, shouldn’t the people that are concerned about this go to those places? Wouldn’t this make more sense? Is there a way for bar and restaurant owners who would like to continue to allow smoking to keep their bars this way – say maybe paying for some sort of smoking license, ensuring that ventilation his better, or some alternative solution like that? I’m just asking.
I just hate it when government tries to add more and more rules. Sometimes, it gets overwhelming.
Friday, June 09, 2006
However, this particular sign has created a disturbance. You see, the sign says, “Please order in English.” Obviously, this is a lightning rod. I’m guessing some political races could be decided on which side of the fence each candidate is on. At the risk of alienating some of you, I will share my opinion.
I understand the arguments that are made for people who do not speak English in this country. Many are poor, can’t afford to learn the language, and have no time to learn because they are working 2 or 3 jobs to make ends meet. That is a fair and just defense. However, I believe that in order for one to move upward in society (in this country), one needs to learn English. I think it is not only a cool thing to know two languages, but it gives one a valuable edge in the workplace. It should be encouraged, no, mandated by this country (just my opinion – you are free to have your own, as well).
On another level, I think the owner of a mom-and-pop establishment, like Geno’s, should be allowed to make any rules (within reason) that he or she pleases. Besides, Pat’s Steaks is across the street, and if some people have a problem with Geno’s rules, go next door – that is your right (and his).
On a third level – when my parents came to America, they HAD to learn English in order to gain citizenship. What happened to make this change? Did you know, you can take your citizenship test in another language? Hunh???? How did this happen? Look, I encourage learning another language – heck, the way things are going, students in the U.S. will be REQUIRED to learn Spanish before too long. So, it should only be fair that American citizens be required to learn English. Again, just my opinion.
I just think this whirlwind against Geno’s is a waste of time. Let the owner do what he wants – stop sticking your fingers in everybody’s pie … for once!
Thursday, June 08, 2006
· I am a sucker for romantic comedies – some of my favorites are Sleepless in Seattle, Serendipity, and While You Were Sleeping. However, I do NOT like Pretty Woman.
· Sometimes I get teary-eyed during certain movies. Some Kind of Wonderful never fails me – when Leah Thompson’s character gives Eric Stoltz’s character the earrings back, the floodgates open. Heck, I’ve even shed a tear during K-9, and that’s a friggin’ James Belushi movie.
· I own Air Supply’s Greatest Hits – Many of these songs remind me of the middle school dances, when I would hope a girl (a cute one) would come up to me and ask me to dance.
· I have been to a John Tesh concert – No, I didn’t enjoy it. I went as a favor for somebody who did a favor for me. The musicians are very talented, but it is not my cup of tea. Plus, John Tesh looks like an idiot.
· I really liked the T.V. show “Boy Meets World” – This one is a tough one. I can’t figure out really why I enjoyed this show? The only thing I can come up with was because Tapanga was kind of cute.
· I have been known to drink frozen drinks – We have a smoothie maker at home, it is fun not only to make the smoothies, but also to add all kinds of liquor to them and find out how good they still taste. I usually only do this on very warm days, though.
· I actually like Adam Sandler movies – Let me preface this by saying that I don’t like all of them – Little Nicky was unwatchable. However, I thought 50 First Dates was good, and I always watch Big Daddy when it is on. I’ll make fun of him, like everyone else, but when I actually sit down and watch a movie of his, I’ll enjoy it for some reason.
· One of my favorite older video games was Bubble Bobble – I know, I know. This game was basically made for girls, but once you play it, it is addicting … I swear!
· I cried when Mr. Hooper died – I was in fifth grade, for crying out loud. Why did I care about Mr. Hooper? I mean, he was the cranky old man on Sesame Street that Big Bird used to piss off. I should’ve been happy when he died … actually, since I was in 5th grade, I shouldn’t have even cared.
· I find Carrot-Top funny – I’m not sure why. He’s more annoying than anything, but I find myself giggling at his “inventions.” I still find Gallagher a little humorous, too – I always thought he brought up great political points in a funny way. And who wouldn’t want to smash fruit for a living?
* I find Janeane Garofalo funny ... or at least I used to. I'm not sure how she's aged, but outside of the average looks, she is extremely funny, smart-assed, and intelligent, and I guess the whole package is what intrigues me (I know that many have a problem with her political stance, and I'm not looking at her from that point of view - just a comedic point of view).
Tuesday, June 06, 2006
As many of you know, I'm not a big Barry Bonds fan. However, there is one Barry Bonds shirt that I'd be proud to wear. I found this shirt here in case you are interested - http://www.tshirthell.com/store/product.php?productid=678
Monday, June 05, 2006
1. When purchasing beer at a local distributor, it is always better to use cash, or even a credit card, than it is using a debit card. Why? Because, many times, the people at the cash registers have about as much brain power as a bag of sand (I hesitate using that, because I don’t want to offend the sand). This is what happened to me on Saturday. I purchase a keg of beer, some ice, and a 30-pack of beer. The bill comes to around $120. The lady charges my card $720. She goes to refund me the $720, and charges me $720 again (that’s $1440, friends). Now, I can’t get any more money out of my account until the end of business today, thanks to her gaff. I’m hoping there is no overdraft problem, that would really suck. I hope we all learned a lesson here.
2. Don’t put chicken wings out as appetizers at the beginning of the party. Why? Because, if only 3-4 people are there at the beginning, they will eat all of them, without giving a sh*t about the other guests who are coming later.
3. Don’t do shots of alcohol late in the party. Why? Because, either you will puke, or a friend of yours will puke, or both. Thankfully, I didn’t deliver the sidewalk pizza, but a friend of mine did. He passed out on a neighbor’s lawn as well, and it took 3 of us to drag him down to the basement. Just don’t do it, dammit!
4. Premake as much food as possible – because you will pretty much spend a good three hours on the grill.
5. Eat before the party, because if you are throwing it, you probably won’t have time to eat.
Friday, June 02, 2006
I’ve been enjoying the lists (number 2 list, Ingaisms, etc.), so I figured I’d share another one. At work the other day, I came up with a term for “self stimulation.” I have learned many terms for this, mainly because I have spent much time performing this “sport.” Here are some of my favorites (I will stories to certain ones that I either came up with, or need more explanation). Notice, I am not using the “traditional” ones, like Chokin’ the Chicken. Please share any that you like.
1. Doing Research – Since a lot of this self-love is done on-line nowadays, it is a nice code word to use. It makes it sound less naughty.
2. Eating Spinach – Popeye has very large forearms – he eats spinach, people who self-stimulate work out their forearms … get the picture?
3. Hockin’ a Pants-Lugie – Just made this one up. I think it speaks for itself.
4. Talkin’ to Willy – We have a friend with a lisp (or a wisp, as he says it). Anyway, he used to always say he was “Talkin’ to Willy,” but what he meant to say was that he was starting to worry. We, as good friends, decided that this term should be used for something else.
5. Launching the Lap Rocket – I got the term lap rocket from the new Bloodhound Gang song (Foxtrot, Uniform, Charlie, Kilo).
6. Tappin’ the Keg – For the beer drinkers (but please, don’t drink this beer).
7. Makin’ Glue – Hey, the stuff is awful sticky.
8. Extracting DNA – For the medical professionals.
9. Impregnating the Toilet - (if that is where you dispose of the tissue).
10. Exercising – Hey, you can lose some major calories from this.