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Totally Blowing Shit Up Tuesdays: A Follow Up

June 30, 2009

Last week, I told you about the videos that we chemists like to watch where shit gets blown up. Don't be fooled: we love a good explosion as much as the next guy, we just prefer to keep the explosions out of lab and safely away from our eyes, nipples, nuts or other important body parts.

We enjoy the ability to rearrange matter to fit our whims and all, but we also like going home at the end of the day with the ability to count to twenty (or twenty-one).

Anyway, I found the video that I had referenced last week wherein the nitrogen triiodide went off with the touch of a feather, but if you watch, it's more like they smack that shit with the stick as opposed to just the feather. That's why I prefer the video I showed last week, wherein the explosion actually came when the feather merely tickled the powder.

Here, you be the judge:

Lame, huh? A contact explosive and you gotta go all Hulk SMASH with it. Ho-hum.

After posting last week's vignette, I went and said something to my boss about ammonia triiodide. He just started laughing. Now, my boss is a bit of a hell-raiser, which is why we get along so well. I figured my boss had a lovely little story about how he had gotten into trouble with NI3 earlier in his career, but no, it was his dad who had pulled some shit.

Seems as though his dad, when he was a kid, decided to make up some ammonia triiodide of his own. So, there he was in his room, toiling away, when his mom smelled ammonia and yelled through the door, "What the hell is going on in there?"

This startled my boss' dad, who then proceeded to spill the whole mess onto his bed, soaking it into his sheets. To hide the fact that he had done this, my boss' dad wadded up his sheets and tossed them in the laundry, said nothing, and went about his business. Well, his mom washed the sheets. Now, remember, NI3 is stable when wet. However, it apparently doesn't come out in the wash, and my boss' grandmother hung the sheet on the line to dry after washing it. The sheet, hanging in the sun and the breeze, dried out completely.

When my boss' grandmother came to take the laundry down, she did what any other red-blooded American does, and she snapped the sheet in the breeze in order to work out the crease from where the sheet had been hanging on the line.

This set off the explosive and, as my boss related to me, she was stuck holding a sheet of fire in her hands, which only came about after the concussion of all the NI3 going up at once.

To that end, let's get a better video in here.

I like how that one has multiple camera angles. Neat.

Also, remember how I talked about how my undergrad professor, Dr. Awesome, often had his roommates painting his keyhole with the explosive so that, when he put his key in the door, it gave a loud bang? Well, my boss' dad did that, too. But, he took it up a notch, and dipped the end of people's pencils in the stuff and let it dry, so that when they'd go to write something down--BANG!

Ah, there no end to your glorious amusements?

A Double Shot of Birthday Wow!

June 29, 2009

Today is a very special day for the women in my family. In case you don't remember what today is, let me remind you with this bodily-fluid enhanced post from last year, wherein I describe one rather unpleasant day all around.

So, today is my daughter's 8th birthday, which means she can sit in the front seat of the car. Oh, special indeed. It's also a special day in my wife's life, as she turns 29, which is traditionally the last birthday a woman has for the rest of her life. Which is good, because in about three years, I'd have to trade her in for two 16-year olds. What? That's how it works, right?

Anyway, we've got some birthday happiness being slung around the olde Jenksatorium today. There'll be singing and dancing and general debauchery...and then I'll get home and cook some steaks. Yeah, me! Provider of meat.

Oh, wait, I should talk about my wife's birthday present on Thursdays...right, right, right. Sorry about that. Did I mention she likes her steak with Bearnaise? Yeah, she loves a big slab of hot meat to come with a rich, creamy sauce. Mental image time!

That leads me into a little story. You've got time, right? Good.

When we were first married, the wife and I used to like going at it hot and heavy, which is to say that we'd do it like, once a week or something. I know. Animals. That is apparently the image my father-in-law had of us, because whenever he'd call, the conversation would start the exact same every single time. It'd go like this:

Me: Hello.
Father-in-Law: Hi, Matt.
Me: Oh, hey!
F-I-L: Am I interrupting anything?

This went on for months, probably almost a year. It was kind of ridiculous, because who would answer the phone during a Rousting Bout of Hide the Pickle, anyway? Priorities, people!

Anyway, one day I answered the phone while my wife was in the other room, so I decided to have some fun. Here's how the conversation went:

Me: Hello.
F-I-L: Hi, Matt.
Me: Oh, hey!
F-I-L: Am I interrupting anything?
Me: Oh, no. We just finished up. Want to talk to [name redacted] Boudicca? Here.
*I held the phone away from my mouth so that it sounded like I was talking to someone while fully aware that I was speaking into the mouthpiece*
Me: It's your dad. Oh, hey, you missed some. Yeah, it's right there. By your mouth. Wipe that up with a towel, you don't want to get that on the phone. Well, I guess you can lick it up; that works, too!
*back into the mouthpiece*
Me: Okay, here she is.
F-I-L: *horrified silence*

He's never asked again if he was "interrupting anything."

Tune in next week when I tell you how I got the people from Liberty Baptist Church to stop ringing my doorbell to ask me about Jesus.

Oh, and, felix sit natalis dies to My Wife, the Comely and Buxom and Horribly Embarrased by This Story Boudicca. Don't worry, my little mulier pulchra, I remember that you don't like any pink in the middle of your big slab of hot meat.

And, Happy Birthday to wee Cookie. You better damn well enjoy that gaming system that I hunted all over the motherfucking Triangle for yesterday. Oh, and I'm sorry that the people on Craigslist are completely inept. I'll get that bike for you soon, I promise!

I'm at a Loss for Words

June 27, 2009

For anyone who thought that Peter Jackson ruined Middle Earth, I present you with Leonard Nimoy's Ballad of Bilbo Baggins:

Jesus fuck...

Friday Morning Latin Lesson, Volume XXX

June 26, 2009

First things first, today is my niece Olivia's fifth birthday. I can all but guarantee that my in-laws don't read this, but still, I'd like to wish her a happy birthday. So, happy birthday Liv.

In case you didn't realize it, Summer arrived this week. It strolled in, punched us all in the face, and then trampled on our dreams of "maybe I won't have to spend quite so much on the air conditioning this year." Ha, fat chance of that. Granted, it's only been in the upper 80s and mid-90s here. In Waco the other day, it was 108, which is hot enough to melt lead. I think. Don't doubt me; I'm a scientist.

With the summer, of course, comes summer blockbusters. Not only did summer arrive this week, but so did the much anticipated (by my four-year-old son) Transformers 2. Anyone know if there's more references to Shia LaBeouf pounding putz in this one? No matter. I thought I'd do a little service this week, and provide you with the Latin names of some of the Transformers. I don't know if all of these characters appear in the movie (probably not, since the movies aren't as cool as I remember the cartoons to be), but they're the ones that I could translate with minimal effort on my part while drunk.

Bombus: Bumblebee
Canis Venaticus: Hound
Juxtafrangere: Sideswipe
Solivirga: Sunstreaker
Mirari: Mirage
Vis: Brawn
Rotis cum Dentes: Gears
Caerulvirga: Bluestreak
Ferrocutis: Ironhide
Optimus Primus: Optimus Prime
Ultramagnus: Ultramagnus (my wife thinks this would be a wonderful size name for a condom).

Yeah, I realize those are all Autobots. The Decepticons' symbol is too pointy for my taste. Suck it.

Since it's hot, I'll give you a little something to interject into conversations in the elevators when some dumbass asks if "it's hot enough for you?" No, numbnuts, my face is beet red and there's a trickle of sweat dripping off my scrotum because I'd like God to crank it up a few more degrees. Fuck you and your rhetorical, unfunny questions.

Anyway, should you get caught by someone who finds himself (or herself...I'm equal opportunity like that) amused by his own pith, just respond with this:

Non calor sed umor est qui nobis incommadat, stercorem pro cerebro!

Pronounced: "Nohn cah-lore said oo-more est kwee noh-bees een-coh-mah-daht, stair-core-aim proh kay-ray-boh!"

Translation in the hovertext!

I found the cartoon at the Global Forecasting Centre for South Africa's website, in case you were curious.

TMI Thursday: Blinded by the White

June 25, 2009

As a little follow up to the Colin Firth story from last week. Apparently, not only do I boast Horstian distance with my meat howitzer, but I also have impeccable aim. My wife had been borrowing a bunch of books from her friend, and as she read them, she put them on the floor on her side of the bed...right next to and all around the now-defiled Colin Firth mag. While I might have splattered spuzz all over Mr. Darcy, I managed to not hit any of her friend's books. Too bad she wasn't borrowing some Robert Jordan books, because then I could have fired one off into the Eye of the World.

That was a little nerd humor...heavy on the nerd and light on the humor.

Speaking of firing one off into the eye(s), my new favorite commenter, Snowelf, last week gave a warning that, whilst desperately avoiding pregnancy doing my Catholic duty, I needed to be careful not to get any in my wife's eyes. Cause it burns. She's just sayin'.

Which brings us to this week's TMI Thursday story.

I had a love/hate relationship with my penis in Junior High and on into High School. I loved that it gave me the freedom to call the world my urinal. I loved that it could be used to sign my autograph on the snow. However, I hated that it would sometimes decide to stand at attention during films in science class while I idly thought about Jane Smith sitting in front of me and how nice she smelled.

I also hated that it made me think naughty, impure thoughts about various female classmates of mine, and that I would inevitably do what any thirteen-year-old boy does when confronted with a bucket full of lust and a raging hard erection. Back in those days, I was much more fearful of God's wrath than I am now. I used to keep a journal between the mattresses (you know, where most red-blood American kids kept their pilfered Playboys from dad's stock) wherein I would make mention of the fact that I had given in to the sin of lust. Not only would I do that, but I would name the young lady I had fantasized about and then I wrote long passages begging this girl's forgiveness over wanting to bed her. I would apologize profusely about the acts I had done while alone in my room and thinking about the land of milk and honey between her thighs.

Yeah, I was borderline zealot. It's kind of creepy to recall, actually.

This whole hatred of my own personal lustful nature meant that I would hold out for as long as I possibly could before I finally gave in to my desires and cooled the raging fires the hormones had stoked in my loins. This would, of course, lead me to write out another blubbery epistle wherein I begged forgiveness for all the sins of the flesh I had just committed.

Naturally, I never showed these to anyone. My first summer home from college, I collected the five or so notebooks I had filled with my own self-loathing apologies and burned them. Ah, catharsis, you smell of summer, kerosene and ashes.

Now, since I was about the age of four, I had a friend who lived up the street from me who happened to be blonde-haired, blue-eyed and pretty much effing gorgeous. In the eighth grade, all the guys at Salamonie Junior High wanted her. Badly. Now, being that I was friends with her, I tried not to lust after her 24/7 like my friends all did (11/5 was good enough for me). I'm just that kind of guy: if we're friends, I'm not going to want to bang you all the time, just some of the time. Classy, that's me.

Let's call her Jamie, because that was her name.

Did I also mention that Jamie had a perfect body? And was on the track team? Oh, and tanned like Italian leather?

One day, Jamie wore a skirt to school. She had the most perfect legs--you know, because she was a runner--that day, and as I watched her walking across the street to get on the bus, something stirred deep within me. When she sat in the seat next to me, the something turned from a stirring and formed into a smoldering ember of lust and desire. As the day wore on and I stared at her legs in my mind's eyes throughout all my classes, the ember turned into a full-fledged inferno. When I got home, I was burning, and there was only one release.

I went upstairs, closed my door, eased down my pants and took matters into my own hands, the whole time thinking of Jamie's gorgeous legs and body. It had been weeks since I had done this before, and finally, blissfully, I exploded.

When I say exploded, I mean detonated.

Now, some men point straight out. Some curl up like a bratwurst. Me, I stand at an angle. I prefer to think of it like a guard holding a spear, but it's probably more like a Nazi salute. What this does is point my penis straight at my face while sitting in certain positions.

And thusly, when I erupted, I hit myself in the forehead.

In the first few seconds after finishing, I sat there with my ears ringing, my breath quickened, and my heart racing, and my mind saying "Holy fuckshit, you just fired one off and smacked yourself in the forehead with it!" Essentially, I was dazed. I didn't act quick enough, and the massive glob of goo ran down my forehead and into my eyes.

And that shit burnt like a motherfucker.

So, when Snowelf warns that you don't want to get it in your eyes, she might just be sayin', but I'm telling you, should you find yourself in this situation, either duck or have a towel at the ready. And close your eyes while you wipe.

Experience is a powerful teacher.

Does this 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!

Independence Day

June 24, 2009

Ready for a history lesson? Sure you are. Swill down some more coffee and hop into the Way Back Machine with me. I cleaned up the mess from where Mr. Peabody peabodied all over the back corner. Febreze works wonders!

On this day in 1314, Scotland won back its independence from the usurpers to the south, sometimes known as England. Why should you care? Because, one of the greatest movies ever made that doesn't involve Indiana High School Basketball ended with this exact scene. In case that doesn't jar your memory, try this:

"In the year of our Lord 1314, patriots of Scotland, starving and outnumbered, charged the fields at Bannockburn. They fought like warrior poets. They fought like Scotsmen. And they won their freedom."

The Battle of Bannockburn took place today 695 years ago. Unlike in the movie, however, Robert the Bruce's army was actually there to fight Edward II (who had not died, but was rather quite alive and full on 100% arrogant). Robert's brother, Edward the Bruce, had been laying siege to Stirling Castle and had worked out a deal for the surrender of the castle to the besieging long as no reinforcements arrived. However, Edward II was bringing reinforcements...lots of them, so in order to stave off having his brother's forces summarily wiped out, Robert the Bruce headed out to slow down Edward II's advance and thus stop the reinforcements from arriving. They met at Bannockburn (after some clever maneuvering about the Scottish countryside by Robert's forces). The battle itself raged for two days and is considered the decisive battle in the war for Scottish Independence, which is why it is sometimes referred to as the beginning of Scotland's freedom.

While it is true that the Scotsmen were outnumbered that day (some 7000 for the Scots and probably 16,000 English), the size of the English army actually worked against it. It was difficult getting the soldiers into the desired positions to defend the ground, largely because there were so many of them, and also largely because Robert the Bruce had done such a fantastic job of funneling the English forces into a very narrow, almost indefensible position between the Stirling and Bannockburn rivers. Not only that, but good old Edward Longshanks decided to not heed one of his commander's advice about holding back, and instead called the man a coward. Pissed, the Earl of Gloucester stormed headlong into the Scottish ranks, dying upon the "forest of spears" that projected forth from the front of the Scottish lines.

You remember the spears, right? The scene, right before Stephen shows up, and Wallace looks to the trees for inspiration.

Wallace: "We'll make spears. Hundreds of them. Long spears. Twice as long as a man."

Hamish: "That long?"

Wallace: "Ay."

Hamish: "Some men are longer than others."

Campbell: "Your mother's been telling stories about me again, eh?"

Anyway, with Gloucester dead and the English army pinned and in disarray, shouts went up from the Scottish lines. This caused the camp followers (you know, cooks, farriers, whores) to pick up whatever weapon they could find and join in the fight. The English lines broke and tried to flee across the Bannockburn. Fortunately, there were enough men in the army that, after the first waves fell into the water and drowned, the remainders could cross the river on their backs. Edward fled with his personal bodyguard and the rest of the English army had to try and find their way back to the border--across ninety miles of very hostile territory. Most of them didn't make it, as they were either run down by the Scottish forces or killed outright when they crossed unfriendly lands. Of the 16,000 men Edward II brought north to face the Scotsmen, 11,000 were killed, along with 700 knights and 500 more were captured and ransomed back to their homes.

One of the more amusing parts (which I am going to steal for my magnum opus) is that, prior to the battle, Robert the Bruce paused on his march and the entire Scottish army knelt in prayer. Seeing this, Edward II loudly pronounced "They pray for mercy."

One of his men then responded with "Mercy, yes, but from God, not you. These men will conquer...or die." I imagine that old Edward shit himself with fury after that statement.

So if your birthday is today, you share your birthday with Scotland...sort of. Also, you share your birthday with yet another of Derek Jeter's conquests, Minka Kelly. Rowr.

Totally Blowing Shit Up Tuesdays: The Purple Powder of DOOM!

June 23, 2009

I'm going to let you in on a little secret. It's something that some of my brethren in the chemical world would appreciate me keeping under wraps, but I can't do it any longer. The truth must be known.

The truth is this: General Chemistry isn't all gas laws and molality. We totally love blowing shit up! We even take times between drawing Lewis Dot Structures and calculating Gibbs' free energies to watch...movies. Movies about totally blowing shit up!

And you know what? We love those movies. It's probably a bad idea to give a bunch of pyros access to chemicals--even if it is in the relative safety of a supervised and monitored laboratory setting--but still. I would look forward to getting to see these little explosive vignettes from time to time rather than learn a new a creative way to transform an amount of something into moles of something.

That's how I learned about this little beauty here. I've seen maybe five or six different versions of the explosive reaction featured in this video, and really, it never gets old to me. To think that something could go off with just the touch of a feather? Awesome.

What you see there is nitrogen triiodide. The beauty of nitrogen triiodide is that, when it's wet, it's completely stable. When it dries out, the shit's as touchy as an overweight, middle-aged man about his car. As you can see, just brushing it with a feather can get it to go off. Later in my chemical career, my undergraduate professor for gen chem, quantitative analysis and p chem, Dr. Awesome, told me about how his room mates would whip up some nitrogen triiodide (he called it ammonia triiodide) and then those wily chemists would paint Dr. Awesome's keyhole (to his door, you sick fucks) with the wet stuff. That way, when he finally rolled back to the dorm, he'd stick his key in the door and BLAM! Instant Heart Failure!!!

He said he was usually tipped off when he would step in front of his door and he'd hear a faint "Paff!" come from under his foot where he had stepped on a spot where the nitrogen triiodide had dripped off the paintbrush and dried on the floor. We chemists know how to have an awesome good time.

Why is this so shock-sensitive? Take in a deep breath. 70% of what you just filled your lungs with is diatomic nitrogen. The reason why 70% of our atmosphere is comprised of this is because it's so stable. Chances are, there's a molecule or seven of N2 going into your lungs right this very second that went into Jesus' lungs, too. The only ones who are good at using this stuff are bacteria that live on the roots of bean plants, fixing nitrogen in the air so that the bean plants can use it, which is why beans are a good source of protein. The farts are just the bonus prize. The moral of this little side avenue is that nitrogen, for all the other magnificent compounds it makes, really just wants to bind with itself and hang out in the atmosphere. That's why nitrogen compounds make such wonderful explosives.

You'll notice the Purple Haze that hangs in the air after the detonations. That's the iodine from the explosive returning to its more stable and happy state of diatomic iodine, or I2. Since iodine is such a huge effing atom (trust me, it's huge in Atomic World), it tends to make easily-broken bonds, which is why the nitrogen can be freed so easily and readily. The net result of those easily-broken bonds is those pieces of filter paper totally being blown up!

The other cool part is that the crystals are a deep purple, most likely thanks to the influence of the iodine floating around in it. In comparison to all the stuff I make, which is either a white solid or an off-white solid or--sometimes!--a yellow solid, it's nice to see the elements from the right hand side of the periodic table (where all the druggies hang out) that can form up into some purty colors.

A Life Invented

June 22, 2009

I'm a fairly creative guy. I hate to blow my own horn (which is how my cousin Walter broke his neck), but I'm all about cooking shit up like bacon...just in an imaginary way. For instance, this here slice o'Blogosphere Heaven was originally just a way for me to talk about the joys and pains of writing a book (joys = finishing shit up, pains = rejection letters).

Since I deal in fiction, I make up people all the time. I make up names, genders, get the idea. Everything that would make an otherwise imaginary figment into an actual, breathing entity.

However, I haven't always done this shit in my literary worlds. No, no. See, I once made up a completely imaginary girlfriend.

Now, now, before you all go away calling me a "Loser" and trying to hide the word underneath a cough, let me tell you the circumstances. I'm sure you'll be far more entertained. Looking back, I know I'm far more entertained.

So, my wee little town sat on the county line, which meant that half of the county went to Huntington County schools, whereas the other half went to Wells County schools. This was very convenient for the creation of an imaginary sweetheart, because, naturally, my girlfriend had to go to a different school. Thusly, she was doomed to spend her days at Norwell Junior/Senior High. She lived on the other side of town, which, conveniently enough, also had a lot of apartments, which provided for a convenient "Oh, I don't know everyone who lives up there."

I guess that I should say that I invented this girl late in the sixth grade and carried her through to part of the seventh grade. This will become important later in the story.

I had to pick a name for her. This was easy. For some reason unknown to me even to this day, I loved the song Sarah by Starship. Couple that with the fact that Sarah was an extremely popular name for girls about my age, and I had a ready-made girlfriend name. Given the amount of people of Germanic heritage in my small town, I went for a somewhat bland German-sounding last name. Thus, was Sarah Klein born.

Of course, I had to describe her to people who would ask, you know, for all those times I would casually slip into conversation that I had a girlfriend. Despite the fact that my tastes trend toward the saucy redheads and the dark-haired beauties, Sarah was blonde. The reason for this was because there were a lot of fucking blonde girls running around town, so sweetie pie Sarah could have been anyone of those. Because my favorite color is green, I gave Sarah green eyes. I also made her somewhat tall, just because.

And thus, a life was born.

Now, I'm sure you're sitting there, delighting in my tale, but wondering why such a suave and debonair motherfucker like myself would need to go out crafting his own Teutonic beauty rather than just roping one in myself. The answer to this puzzlement is simple: I needed her for the sex.

Now, despite the fact that I was on my way to the eighth grade, that I was well on my way to developing a full and unruly set of pubes, that I had already seen a real-live pair of boobs, had already sat through the puberty tapes that they give you in the fifth grade--you know, the one where they separate the boys and girls into separate rooms--AND sat through the puberty tapes where they don't separate on the basis of gender, my parents still had not had the sex talk with me. I emboldened the sex talk because, whenever it was mentioned by my parents, it seemed to echo. You know, as in "someday, I'll give you the sex talk".

The sex talk is a story unto itself and will be told in due time.

Suffice it to say, Sarah Klein was a bit morally unstructured. She didn't start out that way. At first, she was all cute and sweet, but as things went along, she began to be more aggressive. For months, my tactics didn't work, until finally, Sarah's family got a place at The Lake. I've told you about that, what with the girls across the lane wearing their small bikinis all the time and...well, that's a story better suited for another day, too.

So, one night at The Lake, I was talking with my friends up there and talking about how I was going over to Sarah's cottage when her parents went out for their late night boat cruise. We were going to be doing some nasty stuff, Sarah and I, over at her imaginary lake cottage. Oh, the fun we'd have. Dusk began to settle over us, and so my friends and I went our separate ways. I went over to my grandfather's cottage, my cousin--whom, for anonymity's sake, will heretofore be known as "Napoleon"--went to his cottage where my mom and my aunt were pulling a late night sit on the front porch and bitch session, and my friend Tammy went to her cottage.

Apparently, Napoleon went to my mom and aunt and recounted, in gruesome detail, all of the nasty things Sarah and I were planning on doing that night in her cottage. Napoleon had a bad habit of flushing all of the information in his brain out through his mouth in what I like to call "oral diarrhea." Now, bear in mind, I still haven't had the sex talk. About five minutes after we all went our separate ways, here comes Napoleon into my grandfather's cottage, looking for me. I got dragged down to my cousin's cottage and I got read the fucking riot act. You'd think that, since I hadn't had the sex talk yet, there would be no fear of me becoming intimate with my imaginary girlfriend. Apparently, this was not the case.

As I stood there, much like Christ before the Sanhedrin, whilst my mother called poor Sarah a whore over and over again.

Do you like how I just set myself up to be a Messianic figure? Hey, it's my blog, I can do what I want.

My mother asked me why I was afraid to bring Sarah around--because she was a whore? She asked me why I was ashamed to be seen with her--because she was such a whore? She asked me if my father knew that the girl I was dating...was a whore? I think she might have peppered "slut" in there a few times. The memory, despite its mirthful twist, is a little hazy.

The most amusing part was that my mother then went on to tell me about how she had seen Sarah sneaking around, hiding behind trees, walking up and down the lanes between cottages, avoiding my mother's steely gaze. This part really amused me. Somehow, this figment of my imagination, cooked up primarily so that I could finally get past this great hurdle in my life known as the sex talk had not only become real, but apparently had suddenly appeared arrayed in purple and scarlet, and drinking from a golden cup full of her abominations and the filthiness of her fornication.

And, despite the fact that I created her, that I owned the copyright on her character, that I had somehow missed the fact that she had become quite corporeal and real, I wasn't getting any. I was pretty fucking cheesed at this.

Eventually, I was grounded for my efforts. I think the time was two weeks. Oh, and as further punishment, I had to break it off with Sarah. Which was too bad because, really, I'm going to guess that she grew up and got totally hot. Or addicted to meth, one of the two.

Oh, and I didn't have the sex talk for another seven months.

An Interesting Observation...

June 20, 2009

Since it's Saturday, and Cate at Show My Face was kind of enough to kick this whole thing off, I thought I'd join in on the Six Word Saturday Thing.

Poignant Social Commentary Via My Blog

I picked up on this little trend late Thursday evening, but since I teach you guys how to pick up chicks in the subjunctive on Friday, I waited until today to record my observations.

Monday, I retold the story of St. Vitus, the Patron Saint of Epilepsy and Actors.
I got nine comments on the story, one of which was my own.

Thursday, I told you about how I gave Colin Firth a semen mustache.
I got thirty comments, two of which were mine, and I got three new followers and four new commenters.


Apparently, you people are far more enthralled with what comes out of my penis as opposed to some kid who survives being dunked in a vat of boiling lead.

I don't know whether I should be honored and a little bit humbled or if I should be concerned and a little bit scared.

Friday Morning Latin Lesson, Volume XXIX

June 19, 2009

I was about to do something stupid. I was about to ask you people if you've ever messed up real bad. Of course you haven't; you're all as perfect as Jessica Biel's bosom. Much like myself, you have a spotless record.

Well...okay, so maybe I do have a couple of question marks on my record. Going to grad school. That might have been a bit of a big, glaring red question mark. And, apparently, I've been accused of not remembering how to write the shorthand form of a carbonate.

Oh, and there was that time that I was learning to drive. What? I haven't told you that one? Well, pull up a steaming cup of coffee, kids, cause we're hopping in the Way Back Machine for a paragraph or four.

I was fifteen (remember, you get your license at 16 here in the States) and I was practicing with my mother's pride and joy: the minivan. As if I wasn't emasculated enough by being forced to drive a minivan, I wasn't allowed to take the minivan out onto the streets of my town (you know, the sleepy, one-horse type that I grew up in). Top that off with the fact that no one ever told me to use just one foot for both the brake and the gas. I thought "Hey, there's two pedals...I have two feet." Logical conclusion, right? I thought so, too.

So, as I'm pulling the minivan into the garage, I'm trying to see over the hood. Before me is my father and my bicycle and my father's workbench. As my father was guiding me into the garage, I was slowly working the pedals with both feet. Not having the finer touch skills developed yet for the proper pedal work, the whole thing sounded like "VROOM! URCH!!! VROOM! URCH!!! VROOM!"--you get the idea. Finally, I've got about one foot to go before the van is parked and my "lesson" for the day is over. My father (luckily) steps out of the way, and I go to let the van roll forward and then I'll step on the brake, park it, and we're done.

Except...I hit the gas. And my bike. And my father's workbench. The damage wasn't too bad: I had dented the front fender a bit from one of my bike's pedals and there were two deep gouges in the hood of the van from my bike's handlebars. All-in-all, not bad. My mother, who had been sitting on the porch criticizing my performance rather than helping guide me, came running out into the yard, saw the bike wrapped around the front of her baby, and offered up a whining cry reminiscent of Jabba's Pitmaster when Luke killed the Rancor in Return of the Jedi.

While the damage was not bad (it cost my dad $50 to get it all fixed), my mother saw it in a whole different light. What I had done to her minivan was apparently the moral equivalent of lining up a pack of preschoolers and putting a bullet in the base of their skulls, and then cutting out and eating their livers, all while their mothers looked on helpless. Eighteen years later, and I still haven't heard the end of the time I cranked the van into the back of the garage.

So, while all of you might still be the bodily incarnations of perfection, here's a little phrase that you can offer those around you when they mess the bed:

Qualis reges futuiverunt, talis futuivisti!

Pronounced: "Quah-leese ray-gaise foo-too-ee-ware-oont, tah-leese foo-too-ee-weese-tea!"

Translation in the hovertext.

Sure, there have been lots of other people that have made mistakes, but Hugh Grant's arrest still boggles my mind. Why would you opt for some plump street walker when you have Elizabeth Hurley sitting in a short nightie at home waiting for you with candles lit, Barry White playing softly in the background, and a bucket of strawberries and whipped cream? At least, in my mind, that's how she'd be waiting...

TMI Thursday: One Firth the Money

June 18, 2009

About three months ago, there was a crew here in merry olde Durham town filming a movie. It's a movie called Main Street. I frankly don't know a damned thing about Main Street, other than the movie stars or will star Orlando Bloom, Amber Tamblyn and Colin Firth. You probably know them better as Legolas, Joan of Arcadia and the dude who inexplicably had a thing for Renee Zellweger in Bridget Jones Diary.

Colin Firth got that part due in large part to his portrayal of Fitzwilliam Darcy in the BBC version of Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice. My wife is a big fan of the book and of the BBC version. As my wife put it in our dating days, "He's just so...dreamy." She's since tried to make it appear like she's cooled toward him, but I've always known that there was still that lingering dreaminess in his demeanor that caught her eye.

So, it was of no great surprise the other night when my wife brought home a copy of the Durham magazine. See, we have a magazine here that is supposed highlight the culture and class of Durham so that we're known for a little more than just Annie Savoy and Cameron Crazies. The thing about this particular Durham magazine is that Colin Firth is on the cover. Oh, dreamy.

Now, before my wife had gone to Indiana for a week to visit her parents, she had been sick for a week, I had been sick for a week, we had her family visiting us for my daughter's First Communion, we had been preparing for said First Communion, and our work schedules had pretty much prevented any intimacy from happening.

The night before she was due to depart for the wilds of north central Indiana, we were spooning and, well, one thing led to another, and the next thing you know, there we were, in the midst of a passionate embrace. Being that it had been about six weeks since I had last sallied forth, I had the stamina of a thirteen-year-old. After a handful of pumps, it was time. Since I'm too fucking lazy to go to the doctor and get vasectomized a good little Catholic boy, I withdrew and fired off like a howitzer shelling the German lines.

Do you know who Horst Schultz is? Don't ask me why I know this, but he holds the world record for the "Greatest Distance Achieved for a Jet of Semen" at 18 feet, 9 inches. Now, I'm not saying that I came close to Herr Schultz's record, however I apparently did explode rather impressively. It might not have been Horstian in achievement, but it was at least a good 6 or 7 feet away that my seed landed. After cleanup, my lovely wife and I then continued on with our bedroom gymnastics, cuddled up and fell asleep.

The next morning, my wife was rolling out of bed when she looked down at her side of the bed and groaned downheartedly. "What?" I asked.

"You got...stuff...on my Colin Firth magazine!"

Yep, that's right. I gave Mr. Darcy a money shot.

Does this 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!

Raleigh Police, Putting Your Tax Dollars to Good Use

June 17, 2009

Seen that? That's the artwork of one Joseph Carnevale. He's a kid from Indianapolis living in Raleigh who, one day sitting in class, cooked up the idea of taking the traffic barrels that line every fucking street in the Raleigh-Durham area and turn them into this giant piece of barrel art that you see before you.

Here's a bit of extra information for you. North Carolina has the laziest fucking barrel reclamation program that I've ever seen. Years after a road project is done down here, there's still barrels everywhere. So, it's not like you couldn't just go and find some replacements real easy-like.

So, here we go. We've got this barrel sculpture thumbing a ride during morning rush hour, and people are all honking and stuff because they think that shit's funny and creative.

Raleigh police, apparently, weren't as amused as most everyone else. Perhaps they confused it with a giant snow cock or something, because they immediately knocked it down, disassembled it, and released the hounds so that they could find the "criminal" who took approximately $365 worth of barrels and cut, painted and bolted them together.

Warm up the tar and get the feathers ready, we've got some southern justice to mete out. The owners of the traffic barrels, Hamlin Associates, liked the magnum opus canali (translated as "great work of barrels"), going so far as to describe the work as "good". Hamlin Associates have no desire to press charges. Hell, it was like free advertising for them. They've easily recouped the monetary damages.

In fact, they'd like Monsieur Carnevale to reconstruct the Barrel Monster for in the lobby at their headquarters.

So, where's the problem, officer?

Laura Hourigan, who seems to be a barrel of laughs herself, serving as a spokesman for the Raleigh police department went on record as saying, "The police department obviously has a job to do. And, if someone is going to destroy property, we're going to take care of the situation."

No word on whether Sheriff Taylor let her put her bullet in her gun before she made that bold proclamation.

Meanwhile, two years after it happened, the murder of Jenna Nielsen remains unsolved...

Totally Blowing Shit Up Tuesdays: Dr. Poopy Pants Edition

June 16, 2009

So, last week, I played one of my favorite Brainiac clips, in which ampules containing alkali metals were dropped into water and comedy ensued. And by comedy, I mean explosions. Why the hell else would I post that on a Tuesday?

Well, someone came along and told us about how Brainiac has been known to enhance their explosions a wee bit. Oh, boo hoo! It's blowing shit up Tuesdays, man! When in doubt, use C-4. Or would that still be considered "cheating", Dr. Poopy Pants?

So, I went out and found another video detailing some of the fun times that can be had when mixing those metals found in the first column of the periodic table with water. In case you were wondering (and I know that you were), the first column is called the 'alkali metals', as opposed to the second column, which is the 'alkaline earth metals.'

When the alkali metals react with water, they produce a base (opposite of acid) and hydrogen gas. It's the hydrogen gas that's the problem here. You can see it bubbling out rather inconsequentially with the lithium and the sodium, but when you get down to potassium, the heat of reaction is such that it causes the produced hydrogen to ignite. Further down the periodic table and things get...well...more 'splosive. Let's find out.

Dang, that crystallizing dish didn't know what was coming, did it? Notice how they spelled cesium as caesium? I won't go into the hairy details about the name this week. Get it? Hairy? Fuck, I'm clever.

But wait, there's more! Underneath cesium there is another metal, francium! Time for another history lesson. Can you guess where francium was discovered? That's right, Gaul! In modern lingo, we call it France. It's also the rarest of the naturally occurring elements, with only an estimated 20-30 g of the stuff existing at any given time throughout the entirety of the Earth's crust. The reason it's so rare is because every isotope of francium is radioactive, and so it's constantly decaying into something else (radon and radium). It's longest-lived isotope is around 30 minutes. If you're looking for it out in nature, it can be found in ores of thorium and uranium.

Now, if the trend of reactivity toward water holds true as we travel down the periodic table in the first column, and since francium is under cesium, it should be more reactive than cesium. And cesium just totally blew the shit out of a crystallization dish. Let's see what happens when you mix francium with water, shall we?

Aye, that's the stuff!

So, sure, Brainiac might have augmented their explosions a little bit; I mean, Christ, we all get those emails in our spam boxes about augmentation. I'm sure I'm not the only one who clicks on the links--out of idle curiosity, naturally--right? Right? Why do I hear crickets?

Anyway, the point was that, even if Brainiac tossed in some extra shizz with their alkali metals, the stuff is still pretty potent. And it makes for a great Tuesday morning read, right? Right?

Where the fuck are all those crickets coming from? I should spray or something...

Happy Saint Vitus Day!

June 15, 2009

June 15th celebrates the patronage of Saint Vitus, a young man who originally was born to a Roman Senator from Sicily, but who fled his father's house along with his tutor, Modestus, and his nanny (who was also Modestus' wife), Crescentia. Modestus and Crescentia are the ones credited with converting Vitus to Christianity at a young age, which pissed off his father Hylas, who worshiped several of the 'pagan' gods venerated throughout the Roman Empire. Fearing Hylas' wrath, they fled somewhere to Lucania, which was a Roman province in the southern part of Italy, between the Tuscan Sea and the Gulf of Taranto. Various reports have him at the age of seven or twelve when he fled.

From there, he was summoned to Rome, because one of Emperor Diocletian's sons had been possessed by a demon, and Vitus was asked to cast it out. Once Vitus was successful in chasing the demon from the young man's body, Diocletian was so overcome with joy and good cheer that he decided to have Vitus, Modestus and Crescentia tortured--all because they wouldn't renounce their Christian faith and revert to the paganism that still was celebrated in Rome. Diocletian--as is common with people born on December 22--had a heart of pure gold. He was very open and accepting toward different cultures and religions...except for Christianity. Diocletian saw the Christians as a threat to undermine the Empire, and so he declared an edict to rid the world of Christianity once and for all. This little act was known as the Diocletianic (or Great, if you can't wrap your tongue around all those syllables) Persecution, and when all was said and done, some 3500 Christians had been slaughtered, several of them going down in the church annals as being martyrs. Diocletian's successor, Constantine, was the first Christian Emperor of the Roman Empire.

In a somewhat ironic twist, while Diocletian disliked the Christians enough to order their wholesale slaughter, he respected the Jews for their ancient and respectful worship of their God. Therefore, the Christians were the ones persecuted and the Jews were left alone to worship as they pleased. Diocletian seemed to have missed the memo when it came to religious persecutions.

Anyway, it's not surprising that Vitus, Modestus and Crescentia were tortured under Diocletian. According to the legend, Vitus was dumped into a kettle of boiling oil, from which he emerged unscathed. Undaunted--and unimpressed with his faith in God--his torturers then dunked Vitus into a kettle of boiling tar, which still didn't get the job done. Once more, he emerged from the kettle with no visible wounds. I imagine that the guys standing around with feathers were mighty disappointed. Finally, his torturers were totally pissed, and they tossed Vitus into a kettle of molten lead. After completing a few laps around the kettle and doing an Esther Williams routine, Vitus climbed out of the kettle, looked up at his torturers, gave them the finger, and asked "Is that all you got?"

Seeing that the kettles of boiling liquids weren't going to get the job done, his captors dragged Vitus, Modestus, and Crescentia out into the countryside and lopped off their heads. Their decapitated bodies were left for the carrion birds to pick over, until Vitus appeared to a wealthy matron named Florentia and told her where their bodies were lying. Curious, Florentia went to investigate and found the three where the ghost of Vitus had told her they would be. She buried the bodies there on the spot.

The story of Saint Vitus doesn't end there. His veneration became extremely popular throughout the southern reaches of the Italian peninsula and over into Sicily. He was so popular, in fact, that children were named for him in these regions, which gave rise to the names Vito and Guido. These were translated into other languages, which then led to the names Guy in France, Wyatt in England, Veit in Germany and Austria, Wit in Poland, Vid in the southern branches of the Slavic languages, and Vit and Vith in Czechoslovakia. St. Vitus also became extremely popular in the Slavic lands, because his name was translated as Sveti Vid, which came to replace the very popular god of light, Svantovid, which is probably why his Saint days are in the summer months (June 15th by our Calendar, June 28th by the Gregorian Calendar used by the Orthodox church). In Croatia alone, there are at least 123 churches dedicated in St. Vitus' name.

St. Vitus is represented by a young man, holding a palm leaf, and standing in a kettle. Sometimes, he is symbolized by a lion (a common symbol used for martyr's from Diocletian's time) and a raven (probably because Florentia found ravens munching on his innards when she happened upon his body). He is also symbolized by a rooster, probably for his cocky demeanor when dumped unharmed from the cauldrons.

In Germany and some of the other eastern European countries--especially in Latvia and the Baltic states--it was a common custom to gather around St. Vitus' statue on his feast day. While this is not uncommon practice, it became custom to dance in a wild, jerky manner. The dance became so popular that it was named "Saint Vitus' Dance". However, the dance was reminiscent of having a seizure, and because of this dance, Saint Vitus became the patron saint of epileptics, especially those suffering from chorea (which derives its name from the Greek word chorea, meaning a type of dance, which gave us our words "chorus" and "choreography").

Because of the "dance" named in his honor, Vitus also became the patron saint of entertainers, which included dancers, comedians/jesters and actors. He's also the patron saint of dogs, snake-bite victims, and storms. He's said to protect against lightning strikes, animal attacks, and oversleeping (though nothing about sleeping with the fishes, eh Vito and Guido?). He's also the patron saint of Bohemia and a shit-ton of other towns throughout southern Italy and Eastern Europe, most notably Prague in the Czech Republic. He is also one of the Fourteen Martyrs that can be invoked during times of trouble, especially when one is sick. The practice arose during the Middle Ages when the continent of Europe was stricken by this little thing called the Bubonic Plague.

Originally, Modestus and Crescentia were venerated alongside Vitus. They have since fallen out of vogue, as there really is no historical proof that they were ever martyred or--for that matter--existed. I guess that's what you get for teaching your boss' son to be Christian--dumped in vats of boiling liquids, beheaded, and forgotten by history.

Friday Morning Latin Lesson, Vol. XXVIII

June 12, 2009

My wife has been in Indiana this past week, visiting her parents (and ignoring mine). While she was away, I've been here playing lots of video games slogging away tirelessly at work and around the house. I've also been sleeping smack in the middle of the bed. Sometimes without pants on!

Oh wait, those types of stories are supposed to be for Thursdays. Sorry.

While I've nearly completed the bestiary on Final Fantasy XII the landscaping around my house, I've also reveled fully in the fact that I can cook and eat pretty much whatever I want, whenever I want. I didn't eat dinner until almost 9 o'clock on Wednesday night. Schedules? Schedules are for pussies.

Tonight, though, I think I'm going to cop out and eat some shitty food...that others have prepared for me. This way I can eat on it in between fighting monsters and trying to get the last of the espersputting on new loads of laundry and working on refurbishing the decks and stairs on the outside of my house. Besides, the wife's out of town; it's my constitutional right--nay, necessity!--to ingest things that are really, really fucking bad for me, right?

To that end, I bring today's Latin lesson:

Da mihi sis crustum Etruscum cum omnibus in eo.

Pronounced: "Dah mee-hee cease croo-stoom Aye-troosk-oom coom ohm-nee-boose een aye-oh."

Translation in the hovertext.

Hmmm...for some reason, I think the girls who work at Rudino's would be confused by this order. Or maybe I'll get really lucky, and they'll have a dead languages fetish. You never know...

How I Learned to Become a Man

June 10, 2009

My maternal grandfather was, to say the least, an ornery sort. People today would probably say he was twisted, or had a sick sense of humor, or just that he was immature. I'm not sure I'd agree, but he definitely knew what amused him.

This is one of those stories.

Now, remember, I lived in a small town when I grew up. I might have mentioned it once or twice before. This was the kind of place where everyone knew everyone else, and people knew shit before it went down.

So, apparently, my grandfather had been visiting one night, and I was outside doing stuff with him. I don't remember how it happened, but I'm guessing he was out working in the yard or around the house or something (he had lived there before we did, so he was familiar with the workings of the house). As it came to pass, my grandfather probably had to toss a whiz, and being outside, he did what any man does: he snaked it out and let 'er fly, hosing down the weeds out behind the garage.

I must have witnessed this, and most likely commented on it. And then my grandfather explained it to me as "Little boys like to pee outside." Which is true. Very, very true.

So, either the next day, or some time in the not-too-distant-from-the-event-future, I was out in my driveway playing. We had a big screen porch that overlooked the driveway, and my mother sat there spying upon the neighborhood watching me with a steely eye of death to make sure I didn't hurt myself or be abducted or eat cat turd or anything. Evidently, as I was out there playing, the urge struck me, so I dropped trou, snaked it out, and began hosing off the driveway.

My mother, aghast, probably uttered some syllable denoting horror, for I loudly proclaimed to the entire neighborhood "Little boys like to pee outside, Mommy!"

The only problem was, two old ladies from the church were walking past the house as I stood there, akimbo, jettisoning urine for all to see. By this time, my mother had curled into the fetal position on the floor of the porch, whimpering, because the old ladies would gossip about it at the church. That's what they did. It was their sole purpose in being.

That night, we went to visit my grandparents. Now, my maternal grandmother was fiery, to say the least. As my mother was relating the days events as it revolved around my urinary practices, my grandmother, without missing a beat, turned and started slapping the shit out of my grandfather. Without a confession, she knew who it was who had taught me that little boys like to pee outside.

My grandfather, for his part, laughed. And with that, I took my first steps on the path toward manhood.

Totally Blowing Shit Up Tuesdays Once More

June 9, 2009

I've been bored with doing other crap around here, and frankly, I'm tired and sore from a weekend adventure. So, let's get to it and blow some shit up already.

This week's installment is some classic chemistry, right out of the jar of petroleum. Back in high school chemistry, my teacher showed us what happened when you mixed water and sodium. She took a wee piece of metal, dropped it into a beaker, and it spun around, fizzing and foaming. She then took a wee piece of potassium and added it to another beaker of water. This time is fizzed and buzzed around and then it burst aflame.

You had me right there, Mrs. B.

So, as you go down the periodic table, the alkali metals (first column) get more reactive toward water. Lithium is somewhat benign, whereas cesium is...well, let's find out, shall we.

Incidentally, "they" wouldn't let the Brainiac Squad have any francium because it's pretty radioactive stuff. Exploding it everywhere might not be the best idea, if you know what I mean, Jon Tickle.

And, did you notice, Tickle refers to cesium as the "emperor of the alkali metals"? Why does he say this, aside from the fact that it's the most reactive? Well, in Europe, cesium is spell "caesium". Look familiar? Well, look there. The beginning "cae" reminds me of another word. What is it? Something to do with salads...Oh, right, Caesar! Probably, that's what Jon Tickle is alluding to.

But wait! While cesium/caesium does get its name from Latin, it comes from caesius, which means "bluish-gray", not "came all over of the Gauls". Caesar's name is actually something called a cognomen, which is essentially a third name and is usually derived from some personality or character trait. Caesar's cognomen probably came from "caesaries", which means "hairy". A touch ironic, given that he was bald as coot later in life. When burned, cesium gives a bluish light, hence the reason for deriving its name from caesius (pronounced "kie-zee-us"). In fact, at first, its discoverers though it was no different than rubidium or potassium; if it wasn't for the blue light when burned, the discoverers would not have known they had a new element (at the time) on their hands.

Also, just for reference--and so that this doesn't become a Tuesday Morning Latin Lesson (perish the thought!)--cesium carbonate is my absolute favorite inorganic base. If I need to make an ether, I use an alcohol, an alkyl halide, and stir that shit up with a bunch of Cs2CO3. Voila! It's like magic.

More Goofiness for a Sunday

June 7, 2009

Whilst perusing the hagiography for a new saint to make fun of discuss the life story of, I came across the word "thaumaturge". At first, I thought, "Hey, that's a good, silly word." And then I learned what it meant, and I was like "Holy cats! I must use this word somewhere!"

Yes, in my mind, I say shit like "Holy cats!"

Thaumaturge: noun One who performs miracles, especially healing.

The derivation is from Greek, actually, and not Latin. Thaumat is the Greek word for "miracle" or "wonder" and "-urge" comes from ergon which means "work". It's been Anglicized a bit to get to the current ending you see before you.

I think this word will actually pop up a lot (despite the definite lack of Greeks in my story); I'm thinking of making it a title. I have a character named Brandon Voskuil who is one of the first to perform healings through magical powers. I know, I know, fantasy stories suck. You don't have to read it if you don't want to. Anyway, he'll eventually, as his healing powers become more widespread and better known, become Brandon the Thaumaturge.

Of course, religious references don't make any of the various thaumaturges have any magical powers, and so religious translations often translate "thaumaturge" as just "wonderworker." Boring. Bring on the magic, says I. Fuck, it's put a loaf of bread or two on J.K. Rowling's table.

Friday Morning Latin Lesson, Volume XXVII

June 5, 2009

Fear is a very natural human emotion. It's a basic necessity for survival, ranking right up there with food, water, shelter and sex. Basically, if it can kill you, you have instincts that tell you to run like hell from it. Otherwise, the tiger people would be ruling the earth, and we'd all be kibble.

Most people are afraid of spiders or heights or thunder or cougars or some other silly shit. Me? Well, I'm full-frontal awesome, so I'm not afraid of anything. Well, no, that's not exactly true. I'm afraid of shitty movies. Oh look, an ad for Year One. Run away, run away like a Frenchman!

Okay, I'm kidding. Except for that whole cheese-eating surrender monkey part. However, there is one thing that haunts my dreams and keeps me from sleeping soundly at night. It's a creature so vile, so putrid, so other-worldly terrifying that its very name sends shivers up and down your spine. It takes a wise man to admit when he's afraid, and I'll admit when I'm afraid in the only dead language that allows one to sound profound...even when your voice squeaks out of your throat like a little girl's.

"Nihil nisi caprimulgus timeo."

Pronounced: "Nee-heel nee-see cah-pree-mool-goose teem-aye-oh."

Translation in the hovertext!

TMI Thursday: Commando Operations

June 4, 2009

Ever since I've had my gall bladder removed, I've suffered from something that I refer to as "post rectal drip". See, sometimes, if I've had one of those shits where things have been good and loose, a couple hours later I'll develop that "not so fresh feeling" at the back door. I usually go, clean up, and then everything is okay for another couple of hours. The big problem is, when I can't get away, then the insides of my ass cheeks tend to chafe, which is an all new definition of the phrase "pain in the ass." Now, this also happens sometimes if I'm suffering from a good bout of ass sweat, but the ass sweat chafing pales in comparison to the post-rectal drip chafing.

So, about a year and a half ago, I decided that I was going to get healthy. I was going to shed some weight, increase my stamina (heh heh heh...), and overall have a more healthy body. The best way, I figured, was to take up jogging. Now, I love jogging/running. I really do. You wouldn't think it to look at me, but buried beneath the layers of blubber is a runner at heart. However, as it had been many moon since I had last endeavored to jog, I figured I should work into this. I'd start slow and hopefully be able to sustain some form of stamina that would let me jog with some regularity.

To that end, I started walking. During my lunch hour, I would walk a course by the lab building that was about two and a half miles. I could get it done in around 50 minutes, if I didn't drag my ass. As all good ideas of this ilk begin, I started this regimen in January.

Long about the end of April, I was getting pretty good at this. I had lost at least two belt sizes and I was slowly getting to the point where I felt comfortable with attempting to jog. However, I wasn't dressed properly, so I began bringing in shorts and a t-shirt that I could change into prior to exercising then change back out of in order to perform my usual daily work in the lab, hopefully sans the funk of a sweaty man hanging about me.

The other thing is that, toward the end of April, it was getting warm 'round these here parts. Now, the scene is set. One day, I was out doing my lunchtime walk when, around the one mile mark, I sense a little leakage in the outback. At this point, I was at the apogee of my daily route--that is, the furthest from the lab possible in my little walk. Sucking it up like a man, I tried to quicken my pace so that I could get back to the lab and change as soon as humanly possible. Unfortunately, this had a dual affect. One, it caused my ass cheeks to rub together moreso than they were before, thus heightening the chafing. Two, it caused me to sweat more, and I could feel the tortuous trickle between my cheeks. Essentially, it was a perfect storm of ass chafing.

Finally, after my grueling pace took me to the point where I just wanted to fall down on my face and weep, I returned to the lab. As proof that God does, in fact, love me, my labmates were at lunch at the time, and so I was able to slip into the office, grab my stuff, and not have to let them smell what must certainly have been a case of Swamp Ass to the Extreme. I gathered up my clothes and slipped down to the restroom to clean up and to change.

Once I got there and dropped trou, I discovered that my boxer-briefs had gone to the point of no return. What once had been turquoise was now rendered an unholy mahogany, featuring an aroma fresh from the very bowels of hell, such that my nose hairs singed, my eyes watered, and my throat seized closed. Despite the lack of fresh air, I managed to clean myself up. Now, I had a change of pants. I had a change of shirt. I did not have a change of underwear. And I certainly was not going to pull those back up around my nethers after having freshly cleaned them. What was I to do? The only course of action was to strip them off.

And so I did.

I was out there, Jerry, and I wasn't loving every minute of it!

Now, I realize that a number of you don't have scrotums. Let me just say that, for those of you without, the seams of blue jeans and the soft, velvety delicates of a man's anatomy are in no way compatible. The moment that I zipped, the joint where the legs of my pants and my crotch come together seized ahold of my wrinkly, crinkly bag of skin with the tenaciousness of a midwestern housewife on a Vera Bradley handbag. With my lower lip aquiver and unshed tears standing in my eyes, I now looked upon my soiled and defeated companion who had given his life so that my sack would not suffer the indignity of being cloven in twain by my pants. They say you never truly appreciate what you had until you lose it, and such it was with my underpants. Softly, I hummed taps in their memory.

But, what to do? I exited the stall, stiff-legged, and motored over to the wastebasket. Unfortunately, it was one of those wall units designed for the paper towels you use after you wash your hands. This was not a suitable final resting place for my knickers. So, I quickly washed my hands, rolled the fallen soldier up, and made my way back to the lab.

I thought briefly about stashing the underwear in my backpack, but I was afraid that the lingering air of Swamp Ass would give me away. I couldn't just drop them into a waste paper basket in either of the labs, as we tend to not throw much stuff away. So, I did the only thing I could possibly think to do: I slipped them into a plastic bag and hid them in one of the 55-gallon solid hazardous waste containers in the lab. I deftly moved a couple of bags of used filtering agents over the top of the bag containing my soiled smallclothes, put the lid on and sealed it.

I then tried to go about my normal daily routine. However, after about an hour, maybe two, of wandering around the lab and office with no underwear, I became painfully aware of the fact that my pants were trying their best to eat my balls, Chewbacca style. Finally, I could take no more and left early for the day. After a frantic ride home, I dashed upstairs, shed my pants, slipped on a fresh pair of boxer-briefs, and reveled in the wonderment of having my nuts cradled lovingly in the warm, accepting folds of gentle cotton. "I'll never underappreciate you again, underwear," I cooed down to them.

And I never have since. *pats self lovingly*

Does this 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!

Monday, Monday, It Was All I Hoped It Would Be

June 3, 2009

Monday morning came early for me this week. About 4:30, I was rudely awakened by my wife, the buxom and comely and pneumonically flu-ridden Boudicca, hacking and coughing and whimpering that pathetic whimper of those who are deathly near shuffling off this mortal coil.

We discussed what to do about her disease-ridden state, which apparently sparked a bit of inspiration in my lower bowels, and I had to hurry to the bathroom. After finishing up in there--consider it my thinking spot--I proclaimed that I would shower, wake the daughter, get her ready for school, and we would go to the hospital. You can see that I had a pretty good think, think, think in that small, stuffy room.

After getting ready, I load my wife and daughter up into the car and we head down to the hospital where I drop my wife at the door and ride off into the sunset, cackling like a madman and screaming "Freedom! Free-he-he-hee-dom!" go find a parking space. I then gather up my daughter, Cookie, and we trudge into the ER.

Therein, we are met by the ghost of the Notorious R.I.P. B.I.G. and his girlfriend, whom I shall name the Psychotic Pstripper. At first glance, I thought, "Oh, hey, she's kind of cute" only to realize, after having sat down, that she had the face of a giraffe and was so full of drugs that she should have had her own MSDS sheet. Fortunately, Cookie brought a book with her to read, because the Notorious R.I.P. B.I.G. and the Psychotic Pstripper (who was wearing a sheer, white shirt, with one button fastened over what served as her cleavage, thus baring a majority of her disease-ridden torso along with some oh-so-sexy skin-tight jeans...rowr...someone call the Pussycat Dolls) were debating who gave whom what STD. I, myself, buried my attention in a one-page write-up about Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, which I read about seventeen times until finally the happy couple went off to see a nurse...only to return a couple of seconds later. They sat uncomfortably close to us (that is how I knew that the Psychotic Pstripper had a face like a giraffe), which caused the security guard manning the metal-detector (ah, Durham, North Carolina, land of milk and honey) to hover near us with a rapt eye upon the happy couple while trying to pretend like she was watching the weather.

Finally, they took my wife to a bed, where they gave her tylenol. The time came for me to take my daughter to school, so we left my wife, I buzzed through Chick-Fil-A to get Cookie some breakfast (notice, I haven't eaten yet), and then off to the school. We arrived plenty early, but I finally got her delivered safely and began my return-flight to Durham. Upon arriving back at the hospital, I pulled into a spot and began dialing my boss to tell him I'd be in late this morning because I had to take my wife to the hospital. Just as I'm dialing, I notice movement out of the corner of my eye and see a Bag Lady trying to climb into the passenger seat of my car! I scream and reach for the locking mechanism. Too late! She's pried the door open! What do you want? A quarter? A cigarette? Just get out of here!

This woman, with her wild, untamed hair, her paint-encrusted yoga pants and black fleece, shambled along and had a look about her as if she hadn't slept at all the night before, like she had been up all night with a fever and a cough and--oh, shit, that's my wife.


So, as I calm down, I call into work and tell them that I had to run her to the hospital and my boss asks if everything is okay and I say, "Yeah, just a nasty fever and a spot of pneumonia" and he said to take my time coming in. My boss is pretty awesome like that (and no, he doesn't read this shit, which is exactly why I still have a job). Anyway, I hung up the phone and I was like, "Dammit! I should have told him you were mauled by a cougar!"

I then take my wife home, get some medicine into her, prop up her feet, tuck her in, help her to get warm, bring her some water and some Sunny D. However, I finally have to leave because, oh, hey, I have a physical at one o'clock. I have to pick my daughter up at three. This ought to be fun.

So, I buzz by work, check in with the boss, tell him I'm off to my physical and then to pick up Cookie and I'll see you guys tomorrow, hopefully with little to no virus bodies clinging to my personage. I'm off to my physical where I get run through the typical gamut of tests. I have to say, I was impressed that they only jabbed one needle into my arm in order to draw blood (normally, it takes three or so) and the doctor didn't jangle my nards or anything. Though, she did ask if I wanted her to help me with a testicular self-exam, and I was proud of myself for not saying "Do you take cash?"

Forty-five minutes later, I'm on my way to pick up Cookie, and since I've been proclaimed one healthy fat man, I decided to celebrate with a quick trip through McDonald's. Nothing says "I Just Passed My Physical" like sodium-encrusted cholesterol wedged between two stale buns.

I finally pick up Cookie, stop off to get my wife some more Tylenol, and head home. At this point, I'm exhausted, still a little hungry, and suffering from one wicked-ass caffeine headache, so I laid down for a little bit. I was awakened about thirty minutes later by Cookie at the side of my bed. "I have a 101.7 fever."


So finally, blissfully, I get everyone taken care of. My wife is medicined-up, my daughter is full to brimming with fever reducers, and I've inverted a bottle of tequila eaten a healthy dinner of left-overs. We all go to bed and we're sleeping somewhat soundly when I'm rudely awakened in the middle of the night by my wife shuffling around in the room. That's when I hear her click off the fan.

"Turn that thing back on or I'll slit your throat," I growl. Except, it came out something more like "I think it's time for you to take more medicine, dear." She curled up next to me, telling me how cold she was, and so we eventually fell into fitful slumber.

Finally, my alarm went off and I threw back the covers, sweaty and specked with the dying vestiges of my wife's diseases, never so happy to see Tuesday morning arrive.