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Friday Morning Latin Lesson: Volume XXXVII

August 28, 2009

Well, this week marked the dreaded back to school time for most kids. Mine have been back for a month or so, but then, they're doing the year-round thing, which will definitely be nice around Christmas when they have three weeks off rather than the shortened Christmas break that they're handing out now for the traditional schools.

Of course, along with the new school year comes a whole host of other problems: new friends, new classes, new books and, of course, homework.

Now, I was usually good for getting my homework done. Surprise! Yeah, I was just that geeky that I always had it and it was usually right (I think I've shown you enough dumb-assery around here to prove that I wasn't quite a merit scholar or anything). The biggest problem I had was other people not handing in their homework.

I realize you're probably scratching your head right now, wondering just what in the Jiminy Fuck I'm talking about, but I'll explain. See, my first-year French teacher, Ilene Thurman, had a bit of a short temper when it came to people not taking her class quite serious enough. Also, Ilene had one breast amazingly larger--and saggier--than the other. She also wore a shirt that was scandalously see-through, thus proving that, yes, the one of the left was grossly more robust than the right one. We called her Ilene To-The-Left. Unfortunately, I think her gossamer navy blue shirt was her favorite, because she wore it at least once a week. And during one's formative years, that is not exactly what you think of when you spring from the bed every morning proclaiming "I hope I see some boobies today!"

Did I get off-track? Sorry about that.

Anyway, Ilene To-The-Left handed down a proclamation about halfway through the semester that anyone who didn't have their homework done would get a mark against them. The first mark was a warning shot across the bow; the second mark and every mark thereafter netted the offender a detention. And, at the time, the exchange rate for my school was 5 detentions = 1 Saturday school.

One day, late in the semester, I had forgotten my homework in my locker. She was not one to let a student go to retrieve their work. Come prepared, or don't come at all might have suited her perfectly as a maxim. So, that was my first mark. I was certain to bring my homework from then on.

Fast forward a few months. It's a new semester. The very first day of the new semester. And guess who left their French homework at home? Yeah, yours truly. But, hey, I'm good, right? I mean, I forgot my homework one other time several months prior. Again, it was done, but it was not in my hand. And, it was a brand new semester! Clean slate, right?

Not quite. Ilene To-The-Left was not amused, nor did she accept any of my apologies nor explanations nor excuses. Detention for me. *sigh* Just think about what kind of apple-polishing do-gooder I could have been had I not suffered that injustice! It boggles the mind.

To that end, I'm here to offer up a little help to the school children of the world who might suffer a similar fate. Though it might be impossible to plead your case, perhaps you can wow your teacher by pleading your case in Latin. Should you leave your assignment behind, try talking your way out of trouble with this handy little phrase:

"Canis meus id comedit."

Pronounced: "Con-eese may-oose id cohm-aid-eet."

Translation in the hovertext. And, while I never tried this explanation, I did have a dog that looked like this.

As far as I can remember, that was my only detention. Not the only mark to go down on my permanent record, but still, it was my only detention.

TMI Thursday: It Tastes Like...Victory!

August 27, 2009

If this does not sate your thirst for awesome TMI stories, then check out all the other glorious tales of things we probably shouldn't tell at LiLu's home for the staunchy raunchy, TMI Thursdays!

When I was in grad school, my chemist buddies and I tended to hang out with the physics guys a lot. It made some sort of sense, really, since the physics department was in the building adjacent to the chemistry building. In fact, our library was in their building, so we'd see them a lot in the halls.

It was this passing in the hallways that got us invited to their parties. And you know what? This is going to be counter-intuitive, but the physics guys threw some good parties. I guess they had to. If there's one department in the graduate school that has a worse male:female ratio than chemistry, it's physics. I know, shocking, huh? Anyway, in order to lower that male:female ratio, the physics guys would invite pretty much every warm-blooded, breathing female they could find to their parties. And then they'd ply everyone with alcohol. So, yes, physics is exactly like a douchebag frat. And they would have parties all the fucking time! I guess when your life revolves around numbers and Greek letters, all you have to look forward to is the sweet relief that booze offers.

This particular story takes place at a physics party.

There was this cat named Doran who was a physics grad student at the same time I was there for chemistry. Doran was older, with a real stocky, husky build and salt-and-pepper hair that trended more toward salt than pepper. Rumor had it that he had once been a physics teacher for a high school, but he got fired or retired or something. The details were a little fuzzy, but he was at ND to get a higher degree so that he could teach college or something.

More than anything in the world, I think Doran just wanted a friend. Well, and he wanted to get laid. Doran had this dating policy that we called "Flood the Market." He would ask out every female he met. And his pick up lines, while not extraordinarily lame, were pretty white bread: "Hi, my name is Doran. Would you like to go out Friday night." I guess it worked because he eventually got someone to say yes. How that panned out, I'll never know.

Anyway, Doran would also wander around the student center, asking everyone at a table if they'd like some company for lunch. And finally some poor sap would agree and Doran would sit down and chat this guy up like they were the oldest buddies. It was odd, and slightly creepy, and somewhat desperate, but he seemed happy. Except for that whole not getting laid part, which is pretty much how I knew him throughout most of my ND experience.

So, anyway, we're at a physics party, and there's Doran over in the corner, looking as shady as ever. The apartment wasn't exceedingly large, and there was one bathroom near the kitchen/laundry room that pretty much everyone used. So, I was standing there chatting with the ringleader of the physics parties, this guy named Hoop. We were discussing something male-oriented--Tia Carrere admitting in an interview to Maxim that she was hairless from the neckline down--when Doran passed by to use the bathroom.

I know you're having your doubts, but the events of that five minutes are pretty much indelibly chiseled across my memory for eternity. Plus, at the time, I thought Tia Carrere was pretty hot.

Anyway, Doran finishes up in the restroom, comes out, nods to us, picks up his half-finished beer and heads back to whatever corner he had crawled from in order to Flood the Market some more. That's when this other guy, whose name was Mark, walked into the restroom.

"Ah, Jesus!" Mark yelled. "Who pissed all over the floor?"

Hoop and I knew exactly who had been in there. Hoop (the owner of the apartment and the host of the party) called Doran on it immediately.

"Doran, you asshole, you pissed all over the floor!" Hoop yells.

"No, I didn't!" Doran exclaims.

"Look, there's piss all over the floor. It wasn't there a minute ago, and you're the only one who has been in there! You pissed all over my floor!"

"That's not piss. It's probably from where I washed my hands!" Doran saunters back across the apartment, steps into the bathroom, and looks down at the puddle on the floor beside the toilet.

That's when he set his beer on the vanity and knelt down on one knee as if he was about to propose to the toilet. He dipped a finger in the puddle...and then he tasted it.


Still with me?

"Yep! That's piss, alright!" Doran exclaimed. He got back up, picked up his beer, went and got a handful of paper towels, and cleaned it up. He flushed and was back in the corner.

The whole time, I stood there with a look of Oh my fucking God, he just tasted pissed off the floor written on my face, as did Hoop and Mark. And pretty much everyone else in the apartment.

And then it dawned on me.

I turned to Hoop and said, "In order for him to know that that was piss--"

"He would have to have tasted piss before!" Hoop finished my thought.

Then we shared an audible shudder.

"Jesus," I said, "Let's hope his next trick isn't to drop a turd on the ground."

"Regardless," Hoop offered, "I think this is the last party I invite Doran to."

As far as I know, it was.

Seven Awe-Sum Ways to Die

August 26, 2009

A while ago, Cora gifted me with this Awesome Award and told me to tell her seven awesome things. Well, actually, she told me to tell her seven times I've crapped by drawers, so here goes:


Well, that was effing boring.

In lieu of yarns spun about self-defecation, I thought I'd put up something even better: Seven Awesome Ways I'm Terrified of Dying.

As a mortal, I think about death. I can't help it. What will I see when I'm going down that long, dark tube with the light at the end? A thousand Carl Carlson's, beckoning to me with open arms? I certainly hope so. Hopefully he'll have boxes of Nutty Bars waiting for me. Mmmmmm. I love you, Carl.

To that end, let me present the Seven Awesome Ways For Me to Shuffle Off This Mortal Coil:

7. Being Crushed by an Animal Carcass While Driving on the Interstate: Right away, I can hear you laughing, but I know a guy who knows a guy who knows someone who was killed this way. It's frightening to think that you can be sailing down the road, rocking out to some P!nk cranked WAY up in your car, when suddenly--BAM--a dead deer comes flying down out of the sky and crushes your widdle skull and it's all over. I guarantee you're not going to want all the free jerky you can eat in the hereafter if that's the way it ends for you. And, apparently, this happens somewhat often, when a semi or a large truck of some kind collides with an animal and throws the carcass into the air and it lands on a car going in the opposite direction. Now you're going to be watching the road AND the sky while you're driving along, aren't you?

6. Death by Cosmic Rays: Again, here's something that happens all the time, but no amount of defensive driving will save your soul. More frightening than an asteroid or comet impact--only because something will most likely survive after that--a burst of cosmic rays from some where else in the universe could be hurtling toward us right now. And nothing, not even Galactus, will stop them. These things occur when stars or masses of stars or whole galaxies just suddenly decide they no longer wish to live and they...explode...sending out all manner of high energy rays that would reduce the Earth to one bigass charcoal briquette. Good news for the environmentalists: the heat will be enough that it will burn off the atmosphere and all those pesky greenhouse gasses, and after heating up to a million degrees, the Earth can only cool down afterwards. Hooray for silver linings.

5. Being Gored to Death by Some Animal: Again, I'm looking at deer for this one, since I have ten thousand of them living in my yard and the woods adjacent to it. I figure it'd be my luck that I'll take the trash out some night, blundering along in my typically oblivious fashion, and I'll inadvertently disturb some horny buck in mid-coitus. I would totally understand it if he were to go all Pamplona on my ass and eviscerate me as payback for interrupting his special time with the Mrs. I'd do the same. Being that my ribs will be crushed from the impact, thus puncturing my lungs, I'll lay there in the grass, gasping for breath to call for help, but I won't be able to form the words. To add insult to injury, I'm sure a squirrel will bite my testicles off, just for spite. If not a deer, then there's a chance it could be a wild boar. If that happens, please refer to me only as King Baratheon at my wake.

4. Septic Anal Fissure: As much time as I spend on the toilet, I'm surprised this hasn't happened yet. Or something close to it. Although, anal fissures usually are a side effect of straining too hard to push the poo out through the poop chute (I swear to you, I did get an A in Comparative Vertebrate Anatomy). Being that this occurs where poop is constantly sliding out, the crack can get infected with all sorts of nasties, which can then run rampant through your body, eating things they shouldn' my liver and my soul. The thing is, the lower GI tract is filled to bursting with these little beasties that can seriously fuck you up if they escape from the intestines and get into your body. Coupled with what Mike Perry told me about how lots and lots of people die on the toilet, and this all adds up to be rather worrisome. I can see the coroner's report, too: Cause of Death: Infected lesion in the ass.

3. Poisonous Spider Bite...While Asleep: You know how, statistically, the Average American eats five spiders a year while they sleep? Fuck you, I don't care if it's an internet rumor and urban legend. Five of the little bastards go crawling over our faces and fall into our mouths, being swallowed down to oblivion. Well, in North By God Carolina, we have both of the poisonous types of spiders. It would be my luck that one of them would decide to strike his revenge on the way down my windpipe, taking me with him to the big old web in the sky. You can bet your sweet ass that I'll be writing Some Pig in that thing...and then the next week I'll write Some Bacon in the web.

2. While Doing the Nasty: I've always joked that it would awesome to die during sex, that way I could cum and go at the same time! Tiddy-boom! Thank you, I'll be here all week. Try the veal. But, seriously. I can't imagine the ignoble notoriety that I would garner for firing off some sweet release and then giving up the ghost. Now, I won't lie; I'm a man of ample proportions, and I can only imagine that it would do my partner no good to suddenly have my bulk crushing down on top of her. Not only that, but I like to drink a lot of coffee and eat a lot of bacon, so you can imagine what ELSE would come shooting out of me shortly after I began sleeping the sleep of eternity. Yeah, no one's going to forget--or forgive--that, should it happen. Although, it would be awesome to go all rigor mortis with a stiffie. Maybe if this does happen, they can prop me up in a public restroom somewhere and flick off the lights.

1. Being struck in the head by a meteorite: You might think it's a freak thing that a chunk of space rock makes it all the way to the ground. Most of them burn up in the upper atmosphere, leaving dust trails glowing across the sky and causing people to ooh and aah over their majestic beauty. However, some 10,000 to 20,000 meteorites actually make to the surface each year! Most of these land in the oceans and we never see them again, but sometimes, they will hurtle through a house, punching a hole in the roof, stairs, chairs, beds, and curious bystanders wondering "What the hell is that racket?" If this happens to me, I will, of course, be sitting at my computer, and most likely will be doing something lascivious. The coroner will come and find me, and there on the screen with be Teutonic Beauties wearing See-Through Nipple-less Lederhosen and spanking each other with wooden paddles in a tub of whipped cream. Naturally, I'll be sitting there, without pants, dick in hand, a beatific smile on my face, and a meteor lodged in my skull.

So there you have it, my Seven Awesome, Irrational Fears about how I'm going to die. I hope this satisfies your curiosity, Cora, and makes up for the fact that I only crapped myself once in those seven.

Totally Blowing Shit Up Tuesdays: The Peeps Saga

August 25, 2009

I knew, last week, when I was telling everyone about how much I loved me some peeps, that a lot of you weren't Peeps fans. And while I will never understand this, I fully accept the fact that you are marshmallowphobic. Frankly, I embrace it. I mean, if you're not eating the Peeps, then that saves more for me, right? Win win, baby.

And while the movie I showed last week was cool and all--you know, the one where they had the Peeps and it looked like they were various types of fireworks and whatnot--it wasn't really blowing shit up. So, why not blow some Peeps up this week?

You know that it pains me to watch Peeps ruined in such a way, but I'm doing it for you, the people who loves them some splosions and such. Don't say I'm not a giver, because I'm willing to sacrifice some of my favorite disgustingly sugary treats for you readers. It's like a written hug or something.

The key to this expansion thing is that marshmallow, for all it's sugary goodness, has a lot of air whipped into it. When you microwave the Peeps, the air gets hot and expands. Okay, let me rephrase that. Water vapor in the air within the Peeps gets excited when you microwave it, which causes those hydrogen-oxygen bonds to wiggle back and forth a lot more, which causes heat. As the bonds wiggle more and more, more heat is produced. As the heat is produced, something needs to absorb it, so the air heats up. As the air heats up, it expands. Since it's trapped in a somewhat solid matrix of sugar, the air pushes out on the soft marshmallow, which causes it to expand like that. The heat also helps to melt the marshmallow, giving the added blobby effect.

The heat that melts the marshmallow, though, is probably caused by the vibrations of the hydrogen-oxygen bonds in the sugar itself, but that would also contribute to the overall heating, expansion and melting effect seen above. Six of one, half a dozen of the other. It's the polarizability of the -OH bonds that causes the microwave to have any efficacy at all.

The same thing (minus the melting) happens to a marshmallow when you put it in a vacuum. Except, here the air is expanding because it is being pulled out of the marshmallow instead of expansion through heating. Put a marshmallow in a Bell jar and evacuate it, and it swells up huge before collapsing upon itself.

While all of that is cool, it's not really blowing anything up, per se, is it? No, it's not. It's expanding due to heat and pressure changes, but not a true explosion.

So, what happens when you shove a firecracker up a Peeps' ass and light it?

That was so much more satisfying.

EDIT: I had to pop the word verification back up yesterday. I had some asshole dillweed Chinese fucktard spamming my comments. I'll probably drop it again in a few days. Sorry for the inconvenience.

Concerning 102

August 24, 2009

Did you hear? I hit 100 Followers last week! Oh, right, I dedicated two posts to it. I guess you have heard.

Anyway, I acknowledged number 101, which was Jeney, last week. However, I've kind of neglected number 102. Well, I mean, aside from making fun of him some. See, I can do that. I know him.

Number 102 is my cousin, Napoleon. We first met Napoleon back when I told you about my made up girlfriend, Sarah Klein. He's the one who told my mom that my made-up girlfriend and I were going to be having the sex, and I got in trouble for it. He certainly made my childhood interesting.

So, a couple of weeks ago, Napoleon sent me an email detailing about how he was preparing for a tour of duty in Iraq. He's part of the Indiana National Guard, and he's already spent a year in Afghanistan. In the email, he added a link to his blog where he was detailing his latest adventures in the Middle East. However, the link in the email was broken.

Feeling like a dutiful person, I reported back to him that it was broken. He said he'd look into it, and then I told him that he might want to use Blogspot or Wordpress (I think he was using or something). I was pretty happy to see that he was writing a blog because that would keep me in touch with him, plus, since he's dyslexic, I thought that writing could only be a good thing for him.

A couple of days later, I got an email from him saying he now used Blogspot. A couple of days after that, and I picked up my 102nd follower.

Now, you know I can't leave the story off there, right?

One fine summer day, while we were at The Lake, my cousin Napoleon and I were hanging out on our shaded lot along with our friend Tammy. We were probably around twelve or so at the time. Napoleon had gotten himself a big bag of M&Ms from somewhere, and since he has a heart of gold, he was sharing his M&Ms with us. Tammy and I, however, kind of decided to play a bit of a prank on Napoleon.

You know how, when you're about that age, you titter and tee-hee about how eating green M&Ms will make you horny? Well, we shared this information with Napoleon, and just sort of rolled his eyes. That's when we decided to append the different colors of M&Ms to different afflictions. We told him the red ones would make him mad, and that the orange ones would make him shy and cause him to blush. We then told him that the yellow ones would make him pee a lot, and that the brown ones would give him terrible diarrhea. He scoffed at our childish attempts at humor, took his M&Ms, and went home.

Fast forward by one day, and my father is walking by the bathroom window down at the other cottage. We didn't have air conditioning at our lake cottages, and so the windows had to be open all the time. My father hears Napoleon in the bathroom, moaning in pain.

"Napoleon!" my father calls through the window, "What's wrong?"

"I've got diarrhea," he moaned. "Badly."

"You okay?" my father asks.

"Yeah," Napoleon yelled back, "I just need to stop eating the brown M&Ms!"

"Eating the brown M&Ms? Where the hell did you get a silly notion like that?"

"Matt and Tammy told me yesterday when I was eating all my M&Ms. And today I have diarrhea."

Behold, the power of suggestion.

Afflicted by the Plague

August 23, 2009

I was going to write something here yesterday, but I didn't. Nothing like understating the blatantly obvious, I realize, but that's me. The reason for my lack of writing is that I've been taken down by the smallest of foes: the nefarious summer cold virus.

I'm not sure how this little bastard snuck into my body. Actually, I do. My wife has been fighting the nefarious summer cold for days now. At night, when reclining in bed together, she's been breathing her noxious, infectious miasma upon me. Thus it is that the aforementioned nasty little bugger has entered into the temple that is my body and has rendered me eloquently exhausted, which is truly unfortunate for one who refers to himself as "indefatigable."

I mean, I've been afflicted with much worse maladies. At the beginning of the summer, I was struck down by the flu, and it might have even been the most vile and worrisome Swine Flu! Take to the streets, screaming and running now. At the time, our buddy H1N1 was running rampant upon his pale horse through the streets of my little swath of North By God Carolina. And yet, I got up everyday, took the kids to school, and I shuffled off to work where I reformed matter to satisfy my desire. I hardly batted an eye in the face of that most terrible and horrendous affliction! Ha ha! Do your worst! I laugh in your piggy little porcine eyes.

But this? This little sniffle has grabbed me by the lapels and dragged me down into the very depths of wanton despair and lassitude. It's nothing more than a stuffed up head--though, my head is filled with a most heinous and syrupy mass of vibrant green pudding--and a bit of a sore throat, but the true nature of this beast is one that has rendered me...dare I say it...fatigued!

This isn't any typical exhaustion. It's a kind of languor that seems to accumulate in my limbs, making my hands and feet feel as if they weigh a hundred pounds apiece. It's difficult to drag them from one place to another, and while my dear friend--the Target brand knock-off of Dayquil--does help me to feel better, it's a temporary thing. As the four hour time period begins to wind down, the heaviness returns to my hands and feet and--worst of all--my eyelids.

So, if you'll forgive me, I'm not going to be blogging yesterday, as I'm trying to recover from this vile and unctuous pathosis. In fact, if you'll excuse me, I think I'm going to go take a nap, so that I can return to normal blogging activities in the near future.

Friday Morning Latin Lesson: XXXVI

August 21, 2009

Defici epicus, my friends![1] Last Friday, as Elliot reminded us, was the 32nd anniversary of the day Elvis died. Instead of showing you what a dirty old man Ovid was, I should have been talking about the death of the King of Rock 'n Roll. That, my friends, is a failure of an epic proportion.

The reason this is important to me isn't so much because of the King himself. No, my love for Elvis comes from an Elvis Impersonator. Oh, no, wait. An Elvis Tribute Artist, and arguably one of the finest in all the land. His name is Keith Henderson, and he's a propane man by day and an Elvis tribute artist in the evenings and weekends. I say "the best" because he has won awards declaring him as such.

When I first moved down to North Carolina, I tried to tutor chemistry as much as possible in order to help pay the bills and offset the meager restitution offered by the biotech I worked for. My very first job was tutoring this lovely young lady in high school chemistry, and so every Tuesday night I'd head down to her house and we'd work through some problems and worksheets and such and that would be it. I, of course, met her parents and her dogs, and then one night I was in the kitchen and noticed a room that was filled with Elvis memorabilia. And then, one night, Keith walked through carrying a blue jumpsuit with rhinestones sewn onto it, and it was then that I knew what was going on.

And I loved it. This was one of the greatest jobs I ever had. I got to hang out with a lovely family for an hour a week, talk chemistry, and one of the members of the household was a Elvis tribute artist. What wasn't to love? So, when her brother (who was away at college) needed help with college-level organic chemistry the following summer, I jumped at the opportunity to help him, too. I did such a good job helping them both that I was given some tickets to one of Keith's shows. My wife and I were so excited to go. And we went. People, I even forsook the second half of the Notre Dame/Michigan game that year (which Notre Dame won, thankyouverymuch) to see this.

To say I loved it is an understatement. It was hilariously good fun, mostly because Keith does a great job and pours a lot of energy into the role, but also because he doesn't take himself too seriously, which just helps with the fun. We've actually seen him twice. We're kind of Keith Henderson groupies. And that's not something I am ashamed to admit.

So, if ever you get a chance to see Keith Henderson and his band the Illusions, do it. If for nothing more than the chance to say you did. And, if you get to meet him after the show, tell him I sent you. Also, tell him this:

Credo Elvem vivere!

Pronounced: "Cray-doh El-waim wee-ware-aye!"

Translation in the hovertext. Also, THAT'S the blue jumpsuit! And his daughter that I tutored is on the right side of the picture.

The reason I like this little Latin phrase is because it's simple and teaches quite a bit about not only the language but also the grammar. So, I'll do a quick dissection here:

Credo is the first principal part of of the verb credere, which means "to believe (that)". It's the first person singular form and translates as "I believe," and it is from where we derive words such as "creed", "credence" and "credit."

Elvem is a Latinized form of the name Elvis, and since it ends in -is it takes what is called the "third declension". Declensions are ways of changing the ending to nouns depending on how they're used in the sentence, i.e. subject, direct object, object of a preposition, etc. The -em ending is in the accusative case because it is the subject of the indirect statement.

vivere is the verb "to live", and a word-for-word translation would be "I believe Elvis to be living", which is kind cleaning up the translation leaves us with "I believe that Elvis lives".

And there you have it: an actual Latin lesson. Have a good weekend, everyone.

[1] "I have failed epically!"

TMI Thursday: I Can Feel It, Coming in the Air at Night. Oh No.

August 20, 2009

If this does not sate your thirst for awesome TMI stories, then check out all the other glorious tales of things we probably shouldn't tell at LiLu's home for the staunchy raunchy, TMI Thursdays!

Did you see how long that shit yesterday was? Heh. I say that to my wife nearly every day. She still hasn't cracked a smile.

Anyway, that was a long post that took me several days to compose. Sorry that there were a few typos. By the time I was finished, my frontal lobe felt like grape jelly and my eyes were threatening to turn themselves inside out. But, hey, a few of you felt nice, and that was the idea.

Since yesterday's post was so long, I decided I'll give you a short one today. Sorry. I suck, I know. But it's still plenty juicy.

Despite my girthy girthiness, I do eat, from time to time, something other than cake and bacon. In fact, one of my favorite treats of all time is those dried apricot things. Jesus, I love them. I think most of the charm is that they have the size and consistency akin to a small child's ear. They're chewy and sweet and--dammit, if the kids weren't in bed while I'm writing this, I'd head on down to the store and get a box.

Here's another gory secret from my life: sometimes, there actually is trouble in paradise around the old Jenks Household. Sometimes, I get mad at my wife and we do things like raise our voices and stare daggers at one another and talk sarcastically in a tone mockingly imitative of the other. It's true. The ugly side of paradise.

Being as how I'm not one of the wife-beatin' types (despite living in North Carolina, you know, the Fun Carolina), I have to exact my revenge in certain different ways.

This is where the apricots come in.

Have you ever read the package? Do you see what they are preserved with? Sulfur dioxide. It's a nice little preservative; it keeps the apricots good and stale and elasticy, kind of like eating peach rubber bands. However, the true glory of the preservative is that it turns to hydrogen sulfide in your stomach. This gives a beautiful rotten eggs smell.

So, sometimes, when I'm mad at my wife, I'll go to the store and buy a package of the apricots, especially if I know she's going to be working that night. I'll come home and pound a few of them. Unfortunately, the effects usually don't happen the same night that I eat the apricots, so a couple of days after the fight, I'll finally settle in and be good and ripe. Those are the nights when I go to bed before she comes home, and I'll pull the covers up real tight around my body and keep still. I'll read a book or watch tv or something. All the while, I'm turning the atmosphere green beneath the covers. Not only that, but the foulness just sits down there and ferments. After a couple of hours, it's positively toxic.

Coincidentally, that's about the time she'll come home with a big smile on her face because she's so happy to see me and happy that we're no longer fighting. She'll bounce into the room, strip down, get her pajamas on, and then throw back the covers on the bed...only to be punched in the face with the smell of some infernal alchemical brew that will cause her eyes to water and her throat to seal shut so that it doesn't have to take that besmirched air into her body.

Click on the cartoon to make it bigger.

As she's standing there, retching and gagging, trying desperately to draw clean, fresh air into her lungs before she passes out, I'll look over, innocent as a child, and say, "How was your night, honey?"

Oh sure, I've delayed the make-up sex by a couple of days...but don't they always say revenge is a dish best served cold? Or two days later amidst a foul-smelling miasma of death and destruction? I thought so.

Pop the Champagne! It's Celebration Time!

August 19, 2009

As I mentioned yesterday, I picked up 100 followers last Thursday. Now, for some strange reason, I always held at the back of my mind that, if I ever managed to get 100 followers, I'd quit. I don't know why. Some sort of stupid auto-response to the delusions of grandeur telling me I'm popular--too popular.

But then I thought, hey, these people take the time out of their daily lives to come and look at the pictures of half-naked women read the long and wordy and oftentimes winding diatribes you post on a somewhat daily basis. And for what? A grin? A chuckle? A chance to make fun of the size of my penis? To find out what you've cum on today? Any one of these might be reward enough.

However, I decided that it was time that I gave something back...I mean, aside from embarrassing stories from puberty and beyond. Much like those so-called "Fan Appreciation" scams they run at ballparks--I mean, seriously, they bring you in, they still charge you for your ticket, for your hot dog, make you sit in your seat and then arrest you for trying to solicit sexual favors from the ballgirl...not very appreciative, if you ask me--I'm going to do a little Fan Follower Appreciation for my first 100 followers. Sorry, Jeney, you may be hot and have excellent taste in college football teams, and sorry, 102, you aren't hot like Jeney and I'm not sure you even like college football...where was I going with this? Who knows, let's just get to the part where I shamelessly flirt thank you for being a friend.

Who the hell invited Betty White?

Gwen: You were the first person who followed me. I logged in one day and had that friendly little green icon saying that I had one follower. Awesome. That meant you liked me. And that means, through the associative property, that I am a carcinogen.

Kate: You don't mind that my friendship with your husband makes me forget if I'm straight or not. You also bought me a shirt once. And I still wear it. Thanks.

ApocalypsE: You're a pretty cool cat from the Subcontinent. Don't let the rainy season get you down. Also...what the hell man? The Patriots? Seriously? Come on. Well, at least it's not the Cowboys.

Chemgeek: One of my oldest blogging buddies. Your blog is like a perfect mixture of things I like: chemistry, beer, brewing, and making fun of teams from Minnesota. Also, I apologize about the time I was trying to make a Spongebob reference and insulted you with the whole shaved versus bald thing. His head, people. Jesus. We know he shaves elsewhere.

Lisa: You, two too are one of my oldest blogging buddies. We met when there was a monster outside your front door, holding you hostage in your own house, and the cats ran and hid rather than go all Siegfried and Roy on that bug's carapace. I cried a little when Budd E. Phat had to give up the good fight. Your kind heart and massive gonzagas have been constants around here for a long time. I wouldn't have it any other way.

~E: How's that grad school thing working out? Ready to open your veins yet? Give it time, give it time...Anyway, your video blogging is not nearly as boring as you make it out to be. Okay, I lied. I'm not THAT interested in applying make-up. But, I do watch. I might zone a little bit, but I do watch. Honest. Also, you totally earned that recognition in the South African version of Cosmopolitan.

Will: How's that grad school thing working out? Ready to open your veins yet? You were the inspiration for me to get this thing off the ground. Unfortunately, I couldn't keep things serious and well-grounded in reality like you do with your site. However, I've grilled a hat with you while topless. I think that explains a lot.

The Supreme One: I have no idea who you are or what you do. I'm going to pretend that you are Diana Ross. I also will pretend that you like fruity desserts with lots of whipped cream. If both are true, you're the reason I'm blogging. Thank you for reading, or at least signing up to follow.

Jon: Despite the fact that you like the Red Sox (and that I cannot offer any rational reason why I despise them so), I still like to think we're friends. Or enough of friends that you won't slam a brick into the back of my skull like your co-worker did to that disease-ridden rat you found out by the loading dock after lunch one day. Holy fuckshit, man, that story had me in tears.

Mike: So, take the shit I said about the Sawx in your brother's blurb and repeat it here. Cool? Okay. I hope little Caleb Jordan is settling into a routine (I'm sorry, I had to look up his name). Also, I hope the new house is a lot kinder to you than my house has been to me. Stupid Lowes people...

Shupe: I'm not really sure if you come around much anymore, but I hope that things in Utah are treating you well and that you and the kids are having a good time out there. I also hope you found a job. I like a lot of the songs you have loaded into the mp3 player on your site, too. This is a rarity, it seems.

Lydia: Another fine Utah resident, who also doesn't come around nearly as often as I'd like. Here's to hoping that you're getting that sleeping routine down and that you can enjoy full nights of sleep. I will never, ever, EVER be able to get that picture of the flies on the lady's ass out of my mind. Ever.

Mathdude: Why have so many of my early followers gone into remission. Fortunately, you and your Twelve Shades of Awesome Blog show up in my reader every so often. You are, as far as I know, the only somewhat active NC blogger in our little circle, which means something. I don't know. Sorry about the Cardinals, again. The rest of your sports teams can go piss up a rope.

Fancy Schmancy: I find it a touch odd that I have more people from the Boston area reading my blog than the New York area. I don't know why that struck a chord with me while I was thinking of you. And by "Boston Area" I mean New England and Baltimore. Because they're connected. You laid yourself out before all of us earlier in the year with a couple of different topics, and, wow, was that gutsy. Sure, it's one thing to talk about spanking to your dad's Playboys; it's quite another to talk about some of the things you did, my friend. And I salute you for it. Plus, your comments are usually pretty damned funny.

Alex Galvez: A man from Illinois who has gone around the world several times and landed in Hawaii (I believe you to be my only Hawaii reader), you, too, have fallen silent in recent weeks. Your little blurb in your profile alone speaks of a millions stories left untold.

H: Is it wrong that the thing I remember about you is that little story MelO told about you and the glory hole in St. Louis? Yes, it probably is, but I can't help but chuckle every time I think about it. You're the second coolest Hippy I can think of (the first being my duo partner on the college speech team).

Pere Callahan: You may just be some strange Irish priest in France stalker type, but I thank you for following nonetheless.

Alaina: For a while, your daily little quiz results really helped me spice my blog up and waste time keep the mental juices flowing while I was at my desk--the desk you inspired me to clean up! The picture of the rafter of turkeys still comes to mind when I think of your site, along with the house you worked to repair this past summer. A house you don't even live in! See, because I live in my house is awesome.

Holly: The last I knew, O was still loving him some Brett Favre. Of course, that's back before Favre became dead to me. I hope that you and O are still filling each other's lives with joy and happiness. And be careful of the icy bridges in the winter. Yeesh.

Susan: I'll admit it. I clicked on your icon once because I thought, "Hey, she's pretty." Then, I discovered a blog written by a woman who swears nearly as much as I do, who drinks like I want to, and who unabashedly loves her children, both her own and her husband's kids. Also, you like making fun of your husband's ex-wife by posting pictures of ladders and cushions and stuff left out in the rain, and that amuses me. Plus, you've been to Scoturn, PA. It's funny because it looks like Scrotum. Heh.

Ms. Florida Transplant: Like so many others, you've passed on into another, non-bloggy phase of your life, leaving us behind. I certainly hope that you graduated from school, that your boys are still healthy, that you didn't get eaten by sharks on vacation, and that you're driving into the heart of the country. *shifty-eyed* Or something...

Normalize Breastfeeding: The tag "I make milk, what is your superpower?" has to be one of the best titles for a blog. Ever. Your little one-liners are thought-provoking and clever. Plus, you're one of Joel's friends, so you have to be good people.

Candy: Another Bostonite, and she loves her some local teams. Including the dreaded and hated bastard child of the ACC, the OTHER Catholic school. And though I give you shit about this all the time you take it in stride and then BC goes out and kicks ND's ass...again. I still love how your mom is one of TJ Maxx's favorite people. Thanks for appeasing my foot fetish from time to time.

Dr Zibbs: You and your blue yak have sent countless other readers my way. Thank you for that. Also, what did you ever do with that snake you caught in the bucket? That thing was fucking creepy. Also, why does your website try to sell me Catholic stuff every time I'm there? Just curious. Thanks.

Sassy Britches: I like your little rooms with their one wall painted white. I also like the pastoral images you post from around your house. And, if certain other bloggers are to be believed, then you fill out a pair of Umbros like no other. Your little stories about down state Illinois and ventures into Southern Indiana make me think of home, and I appreciate that, a lot. No, really. And it's not just the foot fetish talking. Dammit, there my idiot brain goes again! Sorry I killed your fish your fish is dangerously close to taking a ride on the flushmaster 2000 express.

babette: Merci beaucoup pour lire mon blog. J'espere que tu vas etre riche comme mes reves doux. Aussi, je suis desole que je n'epale pas les mots francais avec tous les accents.

TishTash: I imagine your telephone booth to be full of awesome and shoes. What? It doesn't make much sense to me, either. Also, sorry I got sick and dropped the ball on the whole guest blogging thing. Forgive me? No, I wouldn't either. Wow. Whoa. That's a little harsh don't you think--no, no, you're right. I totally deserve to be raped by goats and have my nuts curb stomped by a rhinoceros.

Simon: Damn you, man. You pop in and out of my life, back and forth. At least you'll be in the same time zone (not to mention, the same continent) soon enough so that maybe we can catch up a little more. And, of course, that whole getting together for a drink thing. Where is Toronto? Remember, I'm an American and I totally don't know geography (it's in Michigan, right?).

Falwless: I really miss the caption contests and how Beckeye would say my caption wasn't funny and then think I was a woman. Okay, that happened once, but you have to admit, it was a good caption. Terribly wrong, but good nonetheless. You're another NC blogger who has gone into retirement or just vanished or something. Happy belated birthday.

Emanobop: You're right, Tauri are cool. Although you lost some points with that whole Twilight thing. And, no, you don't have bug toes. Also, if I ever get my book published, I'll send you a copy...I'll even sign it if you lay off the Twilight crap.

The Ex-: Jesus, you scared me when you first came around. I thought you were the Ex-, as in the Ex- girlfriend that I guest posted about at your place. I hope the career change works out well for you. I sometimes will fantasize about picking up and moving away from a familiar place and setting down somewhere totally foreign, kind of like what you did. I hope that we can reconnect some more. You're a good friend...even if you don't like West Effin Virginia.

Pearl: I wish I had the tenacity you did, my friend. I wish I could post every day for five thousand days straight. Or whatever you're up to. I mean, I could, I just don't. You always have a good little story, and Mary seems like my kind of gal, too. Plus, I don't think I would take hours being cut and mandatory vacations with the aplomb that you have managed to muster. Someday, I'll take you up on that coffee offer.

Johnny the Comedian: How's the act forming up? I'm hoping it's going great. You've been absent from the blogosphere, as well, so I can only imagine that you got some good stuff together and that you're touring. If you're ever in the Raleigh-Durham area, drop me a line and I'll try to come support you.

Tinkalicious: You've never commented here, and every time I try to leave a comment at your place, it never makes it through. Regardless, the name Tinkalicious is cool (I like combining nouns with delicious to make new words) and your avatar is a little racy, a little cute. You make things around here Followicious.

Ellie Great: You, too, don't comment here, and my comments at your place have disappeared. Anyway, thanks for coming around at least once and deciding to follow.

Amy Kate: Another silent follower. You seem to follow a lot of family-based blogs, so I appreciate that you like hanging out here where things aren't quite so G-rated. Thanks for coming by.

Mr Rush: I kind of stopped reading you after you knocked Watchmen with the same "Where is Dr. Manhattan's underwear" line that EVERYONE else in the world used. It's symbolism, dude. But, you've been here and commented more than some of the above, so I thank you. Plus, I think your review of Wolverine was spot on: So bad, it wasn't worthy of review.

arjun: Another of the silent folk. You take some nice pictures and your English captions are actually kind of funny. Plus, you live near Pune, which is funny, given the little post I wrote about the word "poon" once. Also, you make me feel a little bad by deciding that the Indians are my first target whenever I play Civilization III. That is, until they move in and start taking over my saltpeter fields.

Kim: Again, another silent follower, but I appreciate your following me. Hope everything is shaking out like you planned. Have a nice summer! See you next fall!

Lisa Breitfeld: It's been a while since you updated. Your little one liners were clever and witty, and I liked how you focused on the sex. And you mentioned porn a lot. Always good for laughs, those two.

Phatmama: You went in for some tests, and then we didn't hear from you ever again. I'm hoping that things are okay with you, and if not, that you make a quick and full recovery and rejoin us here on the internets. Also, I hope you wore matching shoes to your doctor's appointment.

Paul: I'm assuming you're a hold over from YouThink. I seem to remember someone there going by the moniker of "Tazwert". At first, I thought you were someone else. Glad that you liked my Watchmen review. Hope things are good for you up in Minnesota. By the way, I have a lot of followers from the upper Great Lakes region. It's one of my favorite places in the world.

Cowguy: What's to say here? I could praise how awesome you are, but you already know that. Still. It's not everyday that I meet someone who actually owns 52 watt light bubs. You've got a great wife, beautiful children, and if I put a piece of wood in your hands, you can turn it into a thing of beauty. If I put a piece of wodd in my hands, then we get another Thursday post. I salute you and your cow breeding, mailbox eviscerating, Americana banding, life twittering site.

CoolRed38: Lady, you have shown me a part of the world that I've only heard about when we go to war or when I'm trying to impress my friends with my geography knowledge. You've given me glimpses into another culture. I know a lot of your stories weren't easy to read--that must have made them even more difficult to write and far worse to live through. And yet, you still maintain a snarky, sarcastic, acerbic wit and humor that I applaud. Thank you. And your avatar is badass.

Joel: I'm glad that you were able to figure out where to find me. I had searched for my long lost buddy from the fifth grade, as well, and came up without fruit. Also, glad you could decipher the opening lines on my profile. I guess all that spam I get all the time from them paid off. The next time I'm anywhere near the midwest, we'll have to at least try to get together. Oh, and I promise you, I'll send you a Christmas card this year. Scout's honor.

Anna R: Aye, my favorite Scottish lass since Murron MacClannough wandered through the crowd prior to Wallace's drawing and quartering. Please get your laptop fixed soon. I liked reading your blog, not just for the pictures, but for the content. Plus, you taught me that it's okay to use the word "cunt".

Chaka: I wasn't sure what to expect when the monkey-boy from Land of the Lost started coming around. Fortunately, I found that I should look past the furry face, semi-opposable thumb, and the predilection for flinging poo. I'm kidding, of course. I like the poo-flinging. I also like your candid look into life, family, and tree-cutting. I still haven't gone at the stump in my side yard with a hacksaw yet. Mostly's hot here in the summer. Yeah, we'll go with that.

MelO: *bawls* Please come back to us, MelO! Tell us about the John Deere car driving down the interstate. Tell us about the guys jerking off in the trucks behind you while you are vacuuming out your car. Tell us about spilling your coffee all over yourself. You don't even have to post pictures. Just come back.

Sass: Well, if I can't have MelO back, at least I can have Sass. Your birthday is the same day as the Brewing Optometrist's, and though we've never torn through Bluffton with a dead clown's head on my lap, I still have a feeling we'd raise plenty of hell. Not to mention, your boobs apparently like to flop every which way whenever you play kickball or kickback or kicksies or whatever the hell it was. I couldn't bother paying attention. There was too much movement going on. Like Pearl, someday I'll take you up on that coffee offer.

Mary: When you likened Nadya Octomadrewhat'sherface's womb to a clown car, I about lost it. I'm hoping you land on your feet soon. Like many others, you have lovely children and when I read about their exploits, I can't help but think of myself in five years when my kids will going through the same thing. Wow. You're a window into the future. Hopefully I can come up with clever metaphors for various people's reproductive parts, too.

Beckeye: I'm still all man, my dear. Oh, hey, I have some McDonalds that I'll exchange for some favors. Ha! Like that would happen after I shat upon your team during the Super Bowl. Oh well, you got the last laugh (and five others) on that one, didn't you? If I run into Bill Cowher down here, I'll send him your love.

Miss Amy: So, do we have to change your name now that you've been newly married? I hope all your stuff made it through the move safely and that you're getting settled in nicely. When that happens, drop us a line and let us know how you're doing.

Nikki: You've taken us on quite a roller coaster ride of emotions, both happy and sad. And, you've taught us that driving in Denver during rush hour is dangerous and that Oklahoma can be fun, and that you can be a damned fine cook when you want or need to. Also, we can't wait for your story about the supply closet at work. Wait, I'm not the only one waiting impatiently, right?

Nej: To be honest, I wasn't sure what to think when I first popped over to your place. For some reason, I kept thinking of "Mott the Hoople and the Game of Life" Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know, I quickly learned not to ever get drunk and be loud anywhere near your campsite, that not everyone from Iowa is Bill Bryson, and that, as much fun as a Korean bathhouse might sound, it's really not as advertised. Glad you didn't get sold into slavery. Hop Mot doesn't hurt his fist when he punches out the next printer.

Kimizzy: Curse the real world for pressing in on you and taking you away from us. I realize you're still around in a limited fashion, but you're also busy doing stuff with your artwork. Fine. Live the dream, Kimizzy, so that maybe all of the rest of us bloggers who fancy ourselves to be artists or writers can live vicariously through you. Oh, hey, how's the new iBoyfriend?

Obnoxious SAHM: I like Christmas, too. I'm not dedicated enough to put on a display like that. Also, I blame you on any fish-related deaths that might be attributed to me. Just sayin'. Good luck with that school supply shopping. If you want a hint from me (stop laughing, please, I'm trying to help), go earlier. Both my kids are in year-round school now, and so that takes a lot of stress off the school supply buying. Hopefully your school is less like ours and you don't have to do most of the work at home.

AimlessAndroid: I'm still thinking about getting a pop-up camper for trips with just me and kids, though the wife and I are thinking about a trip to the mountains next summer for some rest and relaxation. So, we might go full out then. Or just rent a cabin. There's bears in the mountains. I hope that you remember that Labor Day is a day off and that you can relax. Also...I've never been so turned on by a butter box before in my life. Maybe we can use that to fry up some ungions.

Snarky A: Like so many others, you've taken me on an emotional ride the past few months. I'm glad to see that you're back in the swing of things, at least blogging-wise. I know it's tough, but I admire you for your strength and willingness to stay by Hubby's side. I hope that he makes a full recovery and that you can get back to your lives. Congrats once again on the citizenship.

Missy: I love how you mix in stories of your life with your kids and your extended family along with funny lists, strange pictures and funny quips. You remind me a lot of a couple of friends of mine at work, which is a good thing, because they're quite alright, themselves. Keep the funny coming, and I'll try to not insult Bumblefucky Kentucky quite so much in the future.

Margo: Instead of knocking Bumblefucky Kentucky, I'll focus my insults on South Carolina. I kid, I kid. But, seriously, what's with the mustard-based barbecue sauce? Ugh. Your little home is beautiful and you weave a good story. Plus, I'm a bit green because you get to live on the beach (though with hurricane season here, maybe not so much) and because you just got back from France. And some day, I promise I'll play along with what I didn't buy Saturday.

Call Me Cate: That is, when I'm not playing along with Six Word Saturdays. The couple of times I've done it, it was great fun. I don't know why I don't do it again. And, aren't you glad I've been able to keep Wizard Cat away from Tonya and Rusty? Yeah, he's a bad influence. I hope all your doctor's visits and such finally figure out why you can't sleep well at night and that you can get back to enjoying sleep. Hopefully it will help the creativity bloom, since you seem a little down at not having a constant stream of new ideas flowing into your blog. A happy Cate makes for a happy blogosphere, which makes for a happy world.

Walter: Speaking of keeping the Wizard Cat under wraps, he's been away from your place for a while. Pensive little shit that he is, he's a bad influence against dogs, too. Anyway, I miss your Things Pets Do. Maybe I should check out one of your actual people blogs...

Baldy Fellow: Glad to see you're back, sir. I know you're busy, what with the pantslessness and the flat all to yourself and the movie coming out. I like that we have the same taste in comics, as well, though I must say that I'm woefully behind in any reading of that sort. I have full faith that you'll rejoin us 100% when you've finally gotten things to calm down. Until then, good luck and kick some ass.

Adam L: Personally, I think you're crazy for doing that whole MD/PhD thing, but, hey, someone has to. I wasn't cut of the right cloth, so I admire you, sir. Also, you're a lot more dedicated to running than I ever was. Maybe that would have helped during grad school. It'd certainly help now. Plus, then I could justify some fried foods at the fair. Hope that fluorescent assay that your boss came back from the conference with works out for you. I mentioned about how our stuff was cool to look at, but didn't net exactly what we were looking for. Anyway, hope you enjoy the Minnesota State Fair.

Cora: Well, well, well. We come to one of my favorite fiery redheads. Whoa, big fella. Don't get bent out of shape quite yet. I have to say, I like your illustrated blog posts a ton. Probably more than I should. Plus, the love of Harry Potter has me starry-eyed in my admiration. Plus, Seattle is second to only Maine for places in America that I really want to go (followed by least some part of it). Although, I hear that you're none too pleased about being in Seattle for some strange reason these days...

Scope: Oh, right! That's the reason. And who could blame her? I mean, cusp Capricorns are known for being dashingly handsome, witty, highly intelligent, and they tend to smell like vanilla. You burst on the scene, and I remember finding you through Gwen. I was much amused by the lawsuit brought against water by the Disney company. Also, the blowing up of the whale was awesome. Both times. The next time I'm in the Great Lakes region, I will set aside some time to have a drink or two.

Vic: How's the patio treating you? Yeah, it's been kind of quiet lately, but the trip to see the in-laws was pretty funny. Kind of reminds me of when I used to visit my family. Except without the dirty poodle. Also, did you ever figure out the right deodorant to use? Also, I think I still have a mancrush on your husband for his headlamp-wearing while mowing at night, and your brother-in-law for his kickass away of showing the weeds who is boss. Plus, I can't pass a lawn gnome or garden statuary of any kind without thinking of you.

Kristine: My blog crushes on your blog daily. I've said that before. I say it again only because it's true. Even with all the freaky monsters you have living around your house and your lawn is infested with vampiric mites, I still can't think it's not a swinging place to be. Mostly because of your sweet landscaping abilities. Next time you find a horse dinosaur buried in the garden, you should totally call someone. They won't think too much of anything bad about you. I promise.

Bored Neo-Classical Eric: I still fear the whole "I'm going to screw up and make a mistake with something Latin and you're going to totally call me on it because I suck like that" thing. Still...wait. You're not a Longhorns fan are you? We might have to end this blog friendship. Even though you do make some incredible pieces of art and your vast knowledge of ancient civilization's tools and mechanics is enviable. And the marble carving looks freakin' sweet. Enjoy that pool (spork ruts and all).

LiLu: Part of me wishes that you still were down in the Thrill, but then I realize that my liver would be destroyed, and I'd be hanging out with someone whose ten years younger than I am and of the opposite sex and that's just creepy in a "that book by Nabokov" way. But, you've given the perfect excuse outlet to exorcise my erotica TMI muse. Plus, you've also shown me that it's perfectly possible to have a family-member find your blog and shrug that shit off and laugh. Which is good. Believe me.

Girl 1nterrupted: I still need to find a copy of that book you recommended for me. Stupid out of print publishings. Anyway, I'm looking forward to it. Also, your adventures in the job placement field made me finally look up what abattoir means, doubling that guy's creepy factor. Your dating stories, what with the midget who owns his own boat, made me feel better about my single days. I look forward to the day that you return to us on a more full time basis.

Lana: Oh, Lana, I'm so glad that you and Kristine are a package deal. The two of you play off each other too perfectly. Your brand of self-deprecating humor reminds me of my own, and I love it. Plus, you cook for a living, which is one of those careers I've kicked around in the back of my mind in case this chemistry thing doesn't pan out. Let us know when you finally decide that naked hiking is, indeed, for you. Not that we'll hide in the bushes to watch or anything. I don't need to be accused of being creepy. Again.

HillBillyFarmGirl: You are, I think, my only reader from all of Scandinavia. Your pictures of the country are absolutely beautiful. Plus, I like the horses and with my current fascination with older Nordic culture, I like reading about giant rocks thrown by trolls to crush churches or to just see how the land lays so that I can envision it better while reading some of these old legends.

Mr. C: Never has anyone mixed tragic tales of loss and death along with the hilariously sad state of our fellows. Plus, I've said it before, but there sure does seem to be a lot of people in wheelchairs up in your part of New York. Still, I love that shit like candy, and I can't wait to stow away on yer pirate ship. Just send a busty wench down to the hold from time to time to keep me from getting "scurvy". And not one of those loser busty wenches, either.

LivingDeadNurse: Your Psycho Ward blog is funny and terrifying...which I think it exactly what you're shooting for. Don't get me wrong. I appreciate what nurses do. It's just, I have gotten some who aren't so keen. I'm sure this is not you. Your stories have made me go a little softer on some of the nursing experiences I've had in the past. Everyone can have a bad day, and I survived, so, awesome, right? Exactly. Plus, I always read your blog in a Rob Zombie-esque voice. I'm sure you sound much sweeter than he.

Erin: You're right. We are dorks! Hey, tell your blog to stop trying to sell me George R.R. Martin books. I've got the good ones, and the rest I could care less about. Plus, I like how you pick up on some of my geekier fantasy-literature-based references. It makes my heart grow a littler warmer when someone does that.

Otherworldlyone: I've taken to turning the lights out and pulling the blinds when I read your blog. I mean, uh, I really enjoy your stories how your mom's boyfriend comes home to find you and your family in compromising dance positions. Good luck with that quitting smoking thing. It will help with the stamina thing. Also, don't get too upset by the cat watching. They are curious after all. If it bothers you too much, strange it. I mean, curiosity did kill the cat at least once, right? There you go. Justification.

Cretin: You came, you saw, you commented, you told great stories, you disappeared again. I'm assuming that you're busy with the pups and all, plus the fireman duties and whatnot. Hopefully, you got to take your cruise like you wanted and got the questions answered about texting and phones and such that you asked.

CorticoWHAT?: You're an inspiration, sir. The last line of your profile had me hooked and I haven't gone back yet. Yes, I hate seeing a friend debilitating like this, but I admire your courage and your willingness to press on. You are bold and honest, and I can only hope that something will happen that will reverse the effects you've experienced so that you can wine and dine your customers and plant your garden again. Plus, you have fine taste in Hawaiian shirts.

MyLittleBecky: You're on vacation, and probably won't read this. Therefore, I'll keep things short. Chuckles is hilarious. Snap some photos in your bathroom to see if you can catch the ghost. I appreciate your use of creative words to describe situations. Please keep your pee-pee soaked panties to yourself. Thank you.

Just Be Real: I'm unsure why you decided to follow my blog. You seem like a sweet person who has been through a hellish ordeal, and maybe you just appreciate the brazen boldness with which I present myself to the blogosphere. If that's the case, thank you. If not, then I'm still confused, but I thank you anyway. Please, keep reading and I hope you enjoy yourself.

Jerrod: Kristine told me you were a good read, and she was right. I'm glad that I could relate a dating scenario that I went through that let you know you weren't alone in this kind of thing. Women. Sheesh. Also, hell yeah, I'll be your life coach. What does that entail? Watching sports? Or am I going to have bring over a stack of magazines with Colin Firth on the cover and then draw a target? Either way, I'll be there. Let me know.

Logical Libby: The story of your baby is amazing and fascinating. I salute you for relating it to us. And, I'm glad she is so healthy. I hope you enjoy the next few weeks while you're home with her. The projects at home will come and go, but the kids will only get older and older. I wish I had learned that when my daughter was younger, but I had to make it through grad school and try to make a career. Cherish the times you get to spend laying on the bed watching her sleep.

Peach Tart: You're a hoot, lady. Though, I've taken to reading you at home because of the naughty cakes and the naked week you've been through recently. Mr Peach Tart is a lucky man, and a good man, from your descriptions. Try not to enjoy the rainbow liquor stores quite so much on your quick trips to Pennsylvania. Good luck with the book tours and whatnot. Yes, I'm jealous. Just a wee bit.

Courtney: How is that you and SC have birthdays and an anniversary within a couple of days of each other? Crazy. Of course, my summer glut of birthdays is kind of reminiscent of that. Hope SC liked the blower. Heh. And the gardening equipment you got him for his birthday. Also, watch out for those West Virginians. I hear they can be a tricksy lot. Run if you hear banjo music.

Paige: You've commented once, and I've checked out your horses. I like what I see. I've been reading a little bit to try and better familiarize myself with the horses since, you know, they're the main means of transportation in my books and whatnot. Probably should know a little something about them other than that they have hooves and eat oats, right?

Mordecai: You have a way of conveying subtle wit and charm through your writing that I wish I could emulate. I enjoy your posts greatly and find them highly amusing. I think I've established that. I realize that reality intrudes on the blogosphere far too often, but I must say that every time I see you've updated, you're one of the first I click on.

Jeanne: Thankfully, you weren't TOO put off by that whole original TMI Thursday post you landed on. Thanks for coming back, and for telling the story of the silly Purdue student intern. Heh. Silly Purdue students. Some day I'll take part in one of your story contests. I swear.

Jules: Since you're heading back to school/work now, does that mean the garage door is closed? No? Good. I've come to enjoy the Tuesday singing vlogs. A lot. They're quite amusing. Plus, you're not shy about laying on a layer of sarcasm, and I appreciate that. A lot. Plus, with the way things fall with your avatar, I get amused by seeing your legs under other people's heads.

Bev: Free the lobsters! Free them right into the pot. Also, free the New England Two. You know what I'm saying. Heh. I've enjoyed the hilarity that you and SOMEONE ELSE have brought to the joint. Even if you are hooked in with that whole Boston crowd, my views on the region have softened enough that I can appreciate everything BUT the accent. The hilarity is still there, though, and that's what I like the most.

Mala: Don't lie. You'll be publishing a book someday called "Hillybilly Threesome", detailing one sweaty, sexy afternoon spent in the cab of a truck out in the middle of nowhere, pulling mullets and screaming about loving banjo music. I kid. I kid. If that happens, you owe me a cut of the profits. I kid. Sort of. Like I told SOMEONE ELSE, I enjoy the hilarity you've brought to the joint. Thanks for the nearly-daily comments and for paying just for the pleasure of reading a TMI post. That made me blush. Almost.

Samsmama: I like the sexy ass hanging in the air in the background of your blog. Thanks for making sure that everything is opaque enough for that. The ongoing saga with your ex-in-laws, however, is trying for the reader. I can imagine how much fun it must be for you. You could always try to smother him with the vagina purse, I guess.

Rita: Your little fish swimming around are hypnotic. I hope you enjoy your time down in the southern part of California. And I hope the Padres beat the Cardinals, but that's just because of my stupid devotion to the Cubs. I know life has dealt you quite a blow, but I'm glad to see that you're seeming to take things in little strides and reflecting on the blessings in your everyday life. Just watch out for flying thorns off the crown.

Elliot: I've said it before, but damn I love Wisconsin. Even Wisconsin in Florida. Your posts make me smile and laugh, though I suck at naming the movie quotations. I always have to look them up, and then I feel like I cheated, so I don't answer in the comments. Plus, you've got cheese in the background of everything. So do I, but yours is more delicious. Thanks for reading!

SoBeAck: It took me a while to figure out just what the hell your name meant. Then I got it. Duh. Your stories of your trip through Europe are great. I like the pictures, too. Thanks for reading, and I hope you enjoy into the future.

Kari: Recently, I've wanted to yell "Woot!" while I'm reading your blog. I think that's just the concert stories coming to a head, though. Also, hopefully the summer will be over mercifully soon and then it won't be quite so hot, though you are down in Georgia, so summer lasts a lot longer than here. I guess you're just screwed then, huh?

Happy Hour Somewhere: For some reason, you seem quiet. I enjoy your posts, though, even though I skip some of the videos (no speakers at work). You can leave inane comments on here anytime you'd like. Good luck on the diet. I'm trying to join you in the loss of a few bowling balls. Is there a gutter anywhere that we can throw them into?

Michelle: Your story about your friend Frank kind of broke my heart, but it did turn me into an amateur crime sleuth...if just for a few moments. Could be the makings of one helluva movie if things get figured out. Also, I hope Devil Kitty hides the horns more often and just snuggles his teddy. The name Linus is perfect for a cat.

Fai: Your open letter format makes for quite some amusing--and poignant--reading. I enjoy it. Thank you for following. I hope to enjoy some more good letters well into the future!

Adrienne: And here we are! Fireworks and confetti for you! Hooray! You have a beautiful family. May you be blessed with them and may they bring you joy for time immemorial. Thank you for being the big number 1-0-0.

And...there we have it. All of my first 100 followers, thanked for their dedication. That's not to say that they are the only ones appreciated. There are tons who don't have their faces in that little box on the right hand side of the screen whose blogs I read on a near daily basis: Poobomber, Red, Cooper Green, Jidai, Frank, Del-V, Words^3, Pfangirl, moooooog, Mo just to name a few. Thank you all for your contribution and your readership, as well.

And, I'm a little burnt out. I'm going to go take a shower, brew a cup of coffee, and eat a cake with a little 100 candle lodged in it. You can have some, too, if you can make it over here before I've shoved the whole thing into my gaping maw.

Thanks again, everyone. And, we'll have to do this again in 98 followers or so.

Totally Blowing Shit Up Tuesdays: For Adrienne

August 18, 2009

In case you missed it last Thursday, tucked into the tail end of the post about some phone sex gone awry, Adrienne became my 100th stalker follower. She even announced it with a little bit of confetti and fireworks.

And, I say, that's not nearly enough. For 100 stalkers followers, we need to throw some kind of celebration (I realize there is 101 now; sorry, Jeney, had you been a day earlier, all this hubbub would be for you). So, today's post is dedicated to Adrienne, who is my 100th stalker follower and for Gwen, who was my very first stalker follower, and for the 98 other folks who have given me their time, attention and patience. Oh, and we'll include Jeney, so that she doesn't feel left out, and because I hear she has excellent taste in college football teams.

(Yes, I know I have 102 followers, but I'll be dealing with 102 in his own, special way. Plus, 102 signed on after I had originally written this.)

So, let's shoot off some fireworks!

Thank you, Canada, for giving us Sue Johanson, Poobomber, and that awesome fireworks display we just saw.

One thing that has always fascinated me was the colors of the fireworks. In general chemistry, we always did labs where you take a salt solution of a certain metal, dip a copper wire in it, and then burn the wire to see what color the flame of the Bunsen burner turns. It wasn't until I was a junior and was slogging through quantitative analysis that I made the connection between flame absorption spectrometry and the colors of fireworks. In case you were curious, I looked up the recipes and found this site. Accordingly, they list the colors and the metals used to create said colors.

Red comes from lithium and strontium salts. Orange comes from calcium. Golden hues come from burning iron along with charcoal. Yellow comes from sodium (this I knew, thanks to Dr. Awesome back in undergrad). Barium gives you green and copper gives you blue (which, for chemists, is a big, fat 'duh'). And for the silvery white, you can burn either magnesium or aluminum. Mixing the various amounts of the salts will give you different hues and shades of your desired colors.

So, there's all you ever didn't wanted to know about fireworks and their colors. How about some confetti? Or maybe just household items made to look like fireworks? I'll go with the latter, if only for the presence of Peeps.

I cannot tell you how happy I am that Peeps decided to expand their line of awesomeness to year-round. Something about the orange sugar they use to coat the marshmallow pumpkins makes them twice as delicious--and gut-bustingly awesome--at Halloween.

Best Buddy and Baby Brother's Birthday Bonanza by my Blog! Beautiful.

August 17, 2009

Today is my brother's birthday. He's 30. When I was growing up, I felt familial pressure to remember my immediate family's birthdays, so don't think I'm any less manly because I remember this shit. Actually, for most of them, it was pretty easy. My dad is June 28 and my mom is June 30. This worked out rather well when I met my wife, because her birthday is June 29, and then we even more conveniently produced a daughter on the same date, June 29. The boy's birthday is July 8.

My brother's birthday is August 17, and my sister's was August 24. They're a week apart, so that was easy to remember, too. Mine is December 22. From those dates, I pretty much remember any other important birthdays. My friend's birthday, the Brewing Optometrist, is five months and a day after mine, May 23. My cousin, the Saxman (different from my cousins Kip and Napoleon), is January 4th, which I remember because it's close to the same time as mine. My brother-in-law's birthday is sometime around my sons and my wife's sister's birthday is sometime around my brother's. After that, things gets hazy. I think Napoleon's birthday is sometime in October, and Kip is in November...maybe. My father-in-law's birthday is at the end of September. My mother-in-law's is sometime around the beginning of the year. January 2, maybe? I don't know. I'm usually drunk.

Anyway, I tell you all of this because today is also my BFF's birthday. The only reason that I remember it's Joe's birthday is because it's the same day as my brother's. I think this is somewhat fitting, because my brother and Joe have a few things in common: they both like to work outdoors, they both can tinker with and fix cars, and they both are possibly the only other men in the entirety of creation that can "accidentally" touch my hand while in the bathroom.

Along those same lines, they're both the only people who can get drunk and leave comments proclaiming their love to me, and I just shake my head, smile, and assume that they've been hitting the box wine.

What is there that I can tell you about Joe that won't make him come and punch me in the throat later in the morning when he reads this? I met Joe before I actually started working with him. He interviewed at my old place of employment, and fortunately for him, he didn't get hired there. It was nothing personal; he just didn't have big tits nor was he Asian, which seemed to be the only way one could get hired there. Plus, he was competent in his work, which was a knock against him.

When I started working at my current place of employ--and discovered Joe was working here--I was nervous that he would be pissed that he didn't get hired by that old place. In a bit of turnabout-being-fairplay, Joe interviewed me. Apparently, I fooled him enough to think that I was a competent member of society and I got hired on. Plus, I think the spider monkey that interviewed for the same position took a job with the circus.

Joe and I started working together on a project a few years ago, and I spent a lot of time talking with him about titties chemistry-related topics: mechanisms, electronegativities, heat of enthalpy, that kind of stuff. Our friendship was thus forged around stories involving T&A pertinent work topics. It was exciting, too, for a while when he and I sat in the same office together and worked in side-by-side hoods. Now we work in separate labs on the same project, but still make it a point to waste time get together and swap stories about hot women we saw ideas.

A nicer guy you'll not find anywhere, which makes me wonder why he hangs out with me so much. He is one of the few people I work with that I'd willingly hang out with on the weekends, but seeing as how he has himself one of those family deals, I don't so much. This probably makes his wife heave a sigh of relief and keeps her from spiraling down a dark path of alcoholism and denial.

To that end, I present you with this comic that I find eerily reminiscent of my friendship with Joe. It's called Least I Could Do, and if you're not reading it, you really should be. That is, if you like jokes about sex and some of the finer pop culture references birthed by growing up in the 80s, you should be reading this. You can click on the comic to make it bigger and more readable.

The truly funny part of this little nugget is that Joe's wife is also named Kate.

So, a heartfelt Happy Birthday goes out to my Stupid Best Friend Flanders, Joe. Happy...however old you are. 35? 73? 12? I dunno. It would be unmanly to have such information.

Also, I should probably wish a Happy Birthday to my brother, Dan, but he doesn't read my blog, so he can find a rope to go piss up. But, happily, though, because it's his birthday.