Tuesday, December 31, 2013

The 2nd Annual Edition of "They Stuck What Up Where?"

Last year around this time, I wrote a blog about some of the reasons people end up in emergency rooms over the course of the year. Now we're not talking heart attacks, appendicitis, or even slicing off one's finger with an electric saw. No, these reasons are a little more... let's just say, exotic.

The list is compiled by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and same as last year, the people at Deadspin have put it in a most interesting order. So what have some of you wild and crazy people been up to this year? Honestly, I don't want to know.

Here is a partial list of what people (and let's not judge here) have inserted in various body orifices, only to realize, it ain't going out the same way it went in.

While fairly mundane, one does need to ask... why are these things in your EAR?
Make-up Brush
"CLASSMATE PUT A ROCK IN EAR, HAS PIECE OF PAPER IN OTHER EAR"... We will not ask where the scissors ended up.

Plastic eyeball...
Ear Plug... clearly these two people need a course in anatomy
2 Erasers... because one wasn't enough

Detergent Pack
Ball of String
Engagement Ring... aren't you curious if it was a man or woman who was trying to swallow the engagement ring?

And now here's where the real fun begins.
Sewing Needle... no matter how hard I try, I can't figure this one out
Plastic Pipe, Dental Floss with Beads... this has party written all over it

Pencil eraser... I had no idea erasers had such a tawdry other life
Glue Stick... really?

And as always, the perennial fun zone.
Shampoo Bottle
Cologne Bottle
Lotion Jar
Soda Can... soda can?
Flashlight... what the hell are they looking for?
Pool Ball... the eight ball perhaps?
Bathtub Stopper
Ice Pack
Toy Submarine.... I can't even go there

People, yes the body can be a pleasure machine, but let the big brain do some thinking before you insert foreign objects into the little brain, or other orifices.

It's New Year's Eve, don't drink and drive, and don't drive man-made materials into body cavities, unless they were specifically made for that purpose. This is not what they mean when they say "Use Your Imagination."

Party On.


Monday, December 23, 2013

How Difficult Is It To Deliver Christmas Cookies?

Well, let me tell you.

The weekend was full of cookie baking. It went rather well, and so far there have been no complaints or reports of trips to the emergency room. Delivered a few cookie care packages yesterday, and today I planned on visiting my only living aunt to drop off a tin. She only lives two towns over and I pass a Shop Rite on the way, so the plan is to drop in for around fifteen minutes, then hit Shop Rite for a couple of things.

I pass Shop Rite and drive another couple of blocks before you get to the bridge that leads to her town. Well, the bridge is closed. And when does the DPW let you know this? Ten feet in front of the now-closed bridge. So, everyone needs to turn around in the middle of the street and go all the way around town. Is it really too much to ask that they put a "Bridge is Closed" sign at the last intersection, so we wouldn't have to end up like something out of a cartoon? Apparently, it is.

I drive back over the first bridge I crossed and take the alternate route to my aunt's house. I walk in and she's in a state. Very stressed, very frantic. It seems she fell for an online scam where someone read her some of her ID information, mentioned Social Security and Medicare, and my aunt filled in the blanks. She's usually smarter than that, but they had enough of her info to make it sound legit. After the call, she got nervous and called to verify. It was a scam. So she had been on the phone for the past three hours trying to get things in order. Luckily I walked in, was able to calm her a bit and take her immediately to her bank.

The bank was very helpful; transfer funds, close accounts, open new ones, set up fraud alerts. I was able to write down for my aunt the next steps to take, who to call, how to deal with all of it... one step at a time. She called me later in the afternoon, all calls were made and she was busy eating cookies. Yes, my work is done.

So I guess the point of this post is to just remind the senior citizens in our lives just how low these pieces of crap will go to get your personal information. They are professional, your elderly relatives are not. Keep on eye out for those you love.

Back to the cookies.
Merry Christmas everyone.


Wednesday, December 18, 2013

It's My Birthday Again... dammit.

So it's my birthday. Big Whoop. Just so you know, it's the last one I will be acknowledging.... ever.

Last night I checked my ticket for the HUGE Mega Millions drawing. Really, it's my birthday, ya think fate or destiny would show a little love. NO. That bitch karma showed up again and not the good bitch either

I share this birthday with Keith Richards. While he is somewhat older than me, I hope I wear my age a little better than he does. I also share it with Brad Pitt. He definitely shows his age better than I do mine.

It's been a wild year. They say you can't teach an old dogs new tricks, but let me just say... woof. If this year has taught me anything, it is to just DO IT. Sometimes shit works out, sometimes it doesn't, but trying something is a whole lot more interesting than just thinking about it.

They say the only regrets you really ever have are not for things you did, but rather for things you didn't do. Screw that. Youth may be gone, but being youthful never is. Or being old and acting like an idiot. Whatever. I plan to enjoy every minute, even today when I have to hear everyone in my family call and sing "Happy Birthday," and trust me that ain't pretty. It's a running joke as to which one of us has the worst voice.

So the day has already begun with wishes from  the crazies who are up way too early, and a phone call from the Drum Mama, reminding me for the next three months I'm older than her. Bite me.

In the end, it's all a memory to tuck away, pulling it out when a day goes bad. Just like family and friends, both old and new, certain things you cherish.

And that is one thing you learn with age.

Thanks guys.

Friday, December 13, 2013

And Here We Go Again

Yogi said it best. "It's like deja vu all over again."

Now unless it's to a show or an occasional get together with friends, I don't go out all that much. The last time we went out for a show with something to eat, it was a bit of a crazy experience. Plus, I work from home, and at the end of the day I don't feel like getting myself together to greet the world... especially when the temperature is in the low 20s.

But last night, out I went.

I had a Groupon that was expiring. Yeah, you all know what I mean. There always seems to be enough time to redeem it, then all of a sudden it's expiring during the week when there are 35 other things on your plate. This one expires today, but since I have a Christmas party to attend tonight, a Thursday night dinner out was on the menu. So was barbeque.

It was a place we hadn't been to, and while only about 15 miles away, it's in one of those towns that wherever you are... you can't get there from here. No highways very close, and you even have to bounce on several different main roads to find it. We got there around 6:45 and left 8:20... 2 people, 2 bowls of soup, 2 dinners. No dessert, no after dinner drinks. And really, how long should it take to pour soup into a bowl? Well, let me tell you.

It was a big, old, house type restaurant.... several rooms, low lights, fireplace, Christmas tree... nice atmosphere. We were seated in a booth for two. There were two other couples in the room. Two. Our waitress came over with the menus: food menu, beer menu and specials. OK, we order a couple of beers, she brings them in a relatively acceptable time. We order, each of us choosing a different one of the two soups on the specials menu. And we start to tell her our choices for the entree. She is not writing this down. As she asks the "other" what sides he would like... well he hadn't thought about that, so as he decides... she forgets what we've already ordered. We're talking a matter of a minute or two. Ok, we restate the order, she writes it down this time, and goes away.

And we wait.

And we notice it's kind of cold and drafty in this booth, so we ask if we could sit closer to the fire. So we move, much better. Nice and cozy. And we wait.

Twenty minutes later, I say "You know we are not going to get the soup. Because really, how long could it take to take a damn ladle and pour it into a bowl?" But yes, happy day, the soup did arrive. Mine was Beef Barley and it was steaming hot and delicious. So I'm feeling much better and looking forward to the entrees.

And we wait.

Another twenty minutes later the dinners arrive. At this point, a couple with a toddler girl, and a group of four friends have come in, sat down, ordered and were served. Of course they had another waitress. At one point ours came over to ask if we needed anything. The "other" asked for a side plate where he could mix up some of the sauces. "Just one?" she asked. Yes. No, she never brought it. As far as we could see, she only had one other table to serve, seriously... you can't remember a plate?

Food was great, no complaints there. In fact, the portions were enough for us both to take home enough for another meal, so we ask her to wrap it up. Oh oh. After another ten minutes or so, we are still waiting for the leftovers, and we haven't even asked for the check. Finally, he walks to the side area off the kitchen and she's trying without success to put the plastic cover on the aluminum tin. Are you kidding me? He takes it from her and brings it back to the table and I close it up. Oh and he brought the check too... only it wasn't ours.

He hands her back the wrong check, she will bring the correct one. But no. I go to bring back the second check and she is all flustered and hands me another one. Still not the right one. Did you ever want to just bang your head against the wall... yeah that.

Finally, we get the correct check and the manager has taken another 20% off the bill, so with that and the coupon, it was an economic night out at least. Would I go back? If I was in the area, yes. It's a little too far off the beaten path to make the trip, but the food was good enough to not hold the whole ditzy waitress thing against them.

I'm just starting to see a pattern developing with my dining out experiences. And another restaurant awaits me tonight. Anyone taking bets?

Friday, December 6, 2013

Grammy Nominations in Real Time

So it's a strange thing to be watching the Grammy Award nominations when you actually have some horses in the race. Realistically we may have one or two long shots, and the categories they are in won't be announced until after the show.

So the opening was a whole lot of... what? Do we really need all that visual and audio stimulation and... clothes racks onstage.

Can they make the graphics for the nominees any harder to read? And wtf was Ed Sheeran saying? I will say Swifty didn't annoy me as much as she usually does, but I still don't understand the need for all the drama onstage. Keith and Miguel did serious justice to "Ain't No Sunshine When She's Gone," though Keith losing his long hair was distressing to say the least.

Maybe after hearing it so much I'm just numb, but Katy Perry was ok and she didn't have a troop of dancers behind her, so that's a vast improvement over most of the entertainers.

Oh look, there's Lorde and she's just singing. What a freakin' concept. No clothes racks, no dancing armies, just singing. Please god, let it be the next big thing.

And what would the evening be without "Blurred Lines?" Actually done well, minus Miley this time.

The show is over and I just looked through the entire list and we weren't nominated. But we worked our butts off to get a record company launched and have several of our artists accepted onto the Grammy ballot. Earth Hertz Records, we are just starting to tell our story. You better believe it.