Monday, April 28, 2008

Devil's Three Way

Best Blog Title EVER! People with mature senses of humor shouldn't Google it.

I saw Saving Sarah Marshall last weekend and it was very funny. I have no idea why I didn't mention it earlier but I should have. It was much better than the latest Will Ferrell efforts and probably better on par with some of the best comedies of late.

Last week I went and ate at the Steelhead Diner again, had the pulled pork and it was good. It's a good place overall - the second visit was not quite as good as the first time I went but still good. It completes the circle because the last time I went there I broke my old glasses and I only recently got the new glasses. Closure or something profound like that right? Symbolic or some nonsense perhaps?

Noticing I tend to start most paragraphs off with the word "I". In an effort to improve the readability efforts will be made to work on grammar, tense, and writing style.

This weekend was amazing weather wise in Seattle. Almost 70, clear skies, and generally good visibility, which is almost more rare than the clear skies. Anyway, in anticipation of the parental units visit in a few months I decided to do some scouting and check out some touristy locales. This week was Bainbridge Island, a short ferry ride across the sound, and it was well worth the effort. It's a small town and I felt like I was in the middle of a TV show like Northern Exposure or Wings because everybody knew each other - it was very surreal and very nice.

Later than night I went to a show at Neumos and saw a band called Awesome that a guy from work is in. Man, lots of links in this entry!

Tonight, Monday, I was watching How I Met Your Mother and they made reference to a "Devil's Three Way" and having spent years in college with plenty of bizarre friends (Ron and Alex specifically) I'm more comfortable with weird terms like this than is probably healthy. I didn't actually know what it meant and the cursory explanation on the show didn't satisfy me so here is the link to the Urban Dictionary entry: Devil's Three Way and this in turn led me to the Lucky Pierre. People over 35 should only click on these links at there own risk. I'm pretty sure this was only put on the internet a few hours ago, or around the time of the East Coast airing of the show. Gotta love the internet.

It was changed from 30 to 35 as a friend just celebrated his 3rd annual 30th birthday party. Someday down the road I be 30 too I guess. Where did my 20's go?

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

New Glasses

So I went with the Stylish pair of glasses. I'm very unsure of these glasses but EVERYBODY else seems to like them a lot. I guess I'll have to get comfortable with them but right now I feel terribly weird when I'm wearing them. I ended up with the "charcoal cork" style for what it's worth. I'll probably wear them forever since they cost more than I really wanted to spend especially since I'm not sure I like them. Oh well.

I updated the book I'm reading on the right. I haven't read a lot of fiction lately but The Pillars of the Earth was an excellent book. There were some very contrived parts of the plot and some rather gratuitous sex scenes but on the whole it was an excellent. I cared about the characters and I stayed up late to finish the book, which I don't do very often. It's worth reading.

I feel like I should write about lots of things but I don't seem to have much. I think I've started to turn into a Seattleite because I ordered a Triple Tall Americano earlier today. I had no idea what that meant before I got here and no I'm starting to speak Starbucks and I'm undecided about that development. I'm drinking a cheap domestic beer right now to counter-balance the whole situation.

Actually, after a few minutes of thought I'm going to write about something I've been keeping on the down low. Since about September I've been volunteering every Tuesday as part of the Big Brothers/Big Sisters program. It's not the full fledged program but I do go to an elementary school every Tuesday to "mentor" a "little brother". This normally means I sit around waiting for my "little" to finish up with class and play a recess game, usually kickball, during lunch hour. This leads into the lunch line and a board game during the remainder of the lunch hour.

There are TONS of things worth mentioning after doing this for almost an entire school year but most noticeable to me is either I'm very old or this elementary school is relatively awful. I don't know even know where to begin venting about the lunch program. This particular school doesn't have ovens! All of the food options are single serve (read: wrapped in cellophane) and microwaved!!!!! There is no guidance on what constitutes healthy food either. My "little" routinely skips over the fruits and/or vegetables offered to eat the worst food. Americans wonder about the obesity problem but I can say look no further than our elementary schools.

There will be more stories from elementary school once the school year is over.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Waterfalls, wedding(s), and more

I've been busy for a few weeks but I'm going to start off with something new. A few weeks ago I went for a hike about 45 minutes away in town called Goldbar. I have no idea about the gold history there but I like the name of the town. The hike had some waterfalls and instead of loading 20 pictures I can't really tell apart I'm going to embed a slideshow so bear with me if this doesn't look so hot.

That led into last weekend. I was supposed to leave for Milwaukee on Wednesday for my friends wedding. I was intending to leave early in order to see friends and run errands, like getting my suit cleaned. American Airlines canceled a ton of flights because of the wiring on the Boeing MD-80, I was flying Midwest, which had the same issues without all the press coverage. Midwest flies into Seattle once a day so I ended up landing in Milwaukee about 27 hours late. It worked out OK in the end but I missed my chance to see some people from Beechwood, which was two jobs ago. Shannon and Reggie also deserve credit for letting me stay at their place and for assisting in the errand running.

I met David the first week of college and we (David and I) met Emily at the exact same time just over 5 years ago. It meant a lot to me to be a part of their wedding. Here is a picture of me from the wedding - tip of the had to Jay. My Color! It snowed during the pictures and everybody had a great time. There probably will be more pictures down the road sometime but not at present as I didn't take my camera.

Sunday, the day after the wedding, about 20 people met for breakfast and later I went to my friends Jay and Mary's house for the day. We watched Rock of Love II and I made a run to Taco Bell for Mary's Grad school group. Again, thanks for letting me spend the night at the newly acquired casa de Lackey.

Today, I picked up the expensive, yet stylish pair of glasses. I'm going to wear them to work tomorrow and maybe take a picture or two. I'm still freaked out about the cost but what the heck - it's only money.

On a completely unrelated note, my friend from college, Pat Milhizer, was vindicated when a cougar was shot in the Roscoe Village neighborhood of Chicago. He was quoted in this article in the Chicago Sun Times and to be perfectly honest I wouldn't have believed him either.

I don't know if everybody gets the ION channel (get it - televisION?) but they are showing regular Quantum Leap repeats right now; which makes them OK in my book.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Style over Substance... and things that annoy me.

In regards to style over substance I usually go with practical and utilitarian. Things should work well but not look awful if possible and if you can get practical for less you go for it. It might be the Midwest upbringing but you don't draw attention to yourself and you certainly don't "waste" money on unneeded flash (or style perhaps?). The reason I bring this up is I have the ultimate style vs. substance dilemma to resolve and it's not too late for me to change my mind.

I mentioned a few posts ago that my glasses broke. They were 4 years old and their time was probably up. Right now I'm wearing a retired pair that's close to 6 - 7 years old and they actually fit pretty well now that I'm readjusting to them. It helps that my prescription hasn't really changed in 12 years too. I did little research into my vision coverage and pretty much all the basics would be covered in the frames and lenses department. I've worn glasses for over 20 years now and I have a few things I like to do in terms of enhancements in the way of scratch proofing and anti-glare but for the most part I'm pretty run of the mill. This ties into the Midwest upbringing - you don't wear "weird" glasses and certainly not ones that draw attention to yourself.

Today on my way home, I stopped at a store that specializes in frames to check out some options and look at some unique or different frames. I must have misunderstood some details or wasn't paying very close attention at appropriate times but the moral of the story is I ended up with some frames that are MUCH MUCH more expensive than I was anticipating AND outside of my comfort zone in terms of style. My friend David asked if there was a TV installed when I told him the cost of my potential glasses. I could buy a decent TV but not great TV so I'll say more than $5 and less than $1000. I have to figure out what exactly the vision insurance will cover as this is out of network so they'll cover some of the cost but nowhere near all. I have two weeks to think about this decision so I'll poll the audience - do I go with the more expensive/stylish/daring pair of glasses that is slightly out of my comfort zone, or do I go with the traditional approach and get a plain(boring even?)/comfortable/less expensive pair of glasses?

Things that annoy me would be getting an email from the payroll department informing me I'm getting a "corrected" W2 because there were some sort of errors on the initial one as it related to my relocation. One one hand I'm really annoyed at this because it could be a huge pain in the butt, however because of the move I haven't actually done my taxes yet. Forwarding and address changes meant I didn't actually get all the tax documents until relatively recently so I won't have to redo my taxes but I'm still annoyed. This is the first year I'm not 100% confident I'm going to get money back. I expect that I will but with all the move related stuff plus filing in two states will add a layer of complexity and could make this more complicated, I still think I'm getting something back but it's more like 95% sure instead of 100%.

Another thing that annoys me is the Marquette basketball coach quitting and leaving for the Indiana job. I can't really fault him for leaving for IU. It's a great job and so on but I don't have to like it. I think MU is at a huge crossroads but I think we'll step up to the plate and swing for the fences. My friend David likes to reference Casey At the Bat and I feel that is where MU cannot go. I would hate to swing for the fences and miss terribly but MU cannot settle either. 1.8MM dollars is a lot of coin and should interest some serious candidates that would not have been available 9 years ago when this opportunity last presented itself. Having seen MU at the low point of missing the NIT though the high point of going to the Final Four I can tell you the latter is much preferred to the former. Normally, I tend to go off toward the deep end in regards to MU basketball but tonight I'm surprisingly OK, it might be some form of shock I suppose, but the next few days or weeks will certainly be interesting.