Leap Day Year!

Feeling froggy? Well today is your lucky day! It’s a Leap Year – and today is that extra leaping day! February 29th! By the way (BTW) – this is the only blog I have ever composed on Leap Day. No lie!
Leap-Day
So what are you going to do with your extra day? Go to work? Not go to work? Learn a foreign language? Buy a snow cone machine so you can fashion your own customized snowballs all year round? The possibilities are quite literally endless!
Endless-Possibilities
Today is also unofficially take your dog for a walk and pick up the dog’s poop day! So many people only do the first part of that sentence. If your dog makes the poop (they all seem to) then be an adult and a tiny bit considerate and have a plastic bag or an old English paper to scoop up the doggy droppings. Yes it’s biodegradable…but so is your corpse. Just saying.
dog-pooping
Have a bodacious Monday and let us all rejoice in the knowledge that our sun has not imploded (that we know of) and continues to send us warmth and light.
bodacious
Peace.

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Judgment Day

Good afternoon and the traditional pleasantries.

Did you see the story about the mom who was living out of her van with her two kids and she had Tupperware containers of bodily waste under the seats? That sounded pretty nasty.

Did I mention the guy on his cell phone who cut me off in traffic driving a sky blue Buick with both of his tail lights smashed out? I was not pleased with that guy and spoke some very choice words that he was not able to hear.

At work this morning there was lady who was wearing leggings who partially spilled her Starbucks coffee in the lobby and when she bent over you could tell she was not wearing Despicable Me Minion underwear. Tsk Tsk.
vent-line
These are three examples of a momentary snap judgment that you form in seconds and then an hour later your brain disregards. We all do it. Like the guy surfing on his beat up Macbook at the local Panera Bread Co – he must not be able to afford the latest technology or he must be a serial-killer to be out in public with no significant other or family. Perhaps he is just bold and looking at p-o-r-n. Who knows. Oh he’s eating a scone and drinking a smoothie? Yep definitively a Freakshow candidate. lol

This kind of judgment and entertainment falls into the people watching category. It is one of my favorite activities especially in the winter time when there are less legit activities to do. For your own personal creativity it is harmless and mindless fun unless you have the FBI tip line as one of your contacts and frequently leave anonymous ‘tips’.

So on a more serious note let’s talk about unfair judgments, like from people who are not just a snowflake floating by your window of life. There are those people who judge you based on your age, you relationship choices, where you choose to live or other things that do not define your character as a person. No offense it is anyone’s right to not like someone. Sometimes people just put out a vibe that says: grungy Crocs with cutoff jeans in a stained and torn wife-beater tank top finished off with little bits of hard-boiled egg in their beard yucky (especially eeww on a lady).
beard
I have an unofficial evolving list of people whom I do not particularly care for based on first impressions and halitosis incidents. Some of these people have gotten their cases down-graded to a simple, I can tolerate you but I really would not hang out with you for no reason category. Over the course of time, some of the people completely got off the you suck list by just having a conversation with me and getting familiar a bit. First impressions can be so difficult based on innumerable factors: your mood, their mood, atmosphere, amount of alcohol consumed (by both), weather, entourage, how much body odor you emit, proper sentence structure when speaking, sheer time of day, using a catchphrase every 10 seconds, talking politics, bashing people with hair, speaking in absolutes, jokes or perceived jokes or 100,000 other things that could tip someone’s opinion one way or the other.
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To anyone who doesn’t like me but hasn’t taken the time to get to know me…I respectfully say, hey eat a heaping bowl of sh!t with maggot sprinkles and wash it down with a Super Big Gulp sized glass of suck it. If you dislike me based on secondary information or because I’m not in my 20’s – see the above statement. To my knowledge I am unapologetic-ally crude, goofy, caring, awkward, good-intentioned, logical, passionate, sometimes wrong, short, pale, older, lazy, out-going, loving, dedicated, easily distracted and a dozen or more things on both sides of the positive and negative ledgers. Last I checked I try to be a good friend and do the right thing and be there when someone needs a sympathetic ear or well-meaning advice.
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Newton’s First Law of Motion:  Every object in a state of uniform motion tends to remain in that state of motion unless an external force is applied to it. This is recognized essentially as Galileo’s concept of inertia. Just the like principal of Haters. Things at rest tend to stay at rest…Haters don’t rest. So Haters gonna hate because there is so much that is beautiful and worth enjoying in the world to crap on so they gotta stay busy.
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So for the people who have judged me and don’t like me and have never really had a five minute conversation with me to ask about what sports I like (and why) or my favorite vacation spots or why I hate the movie Titanic or why I like cats better than dogs but still like dogs too – go put a litter box tootsie roll in your mouth and start chewing.
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For those of you that have a legit reason to dislike me, like the girl who I broke her hand playing softball or the people who had to watch me chair dance in public – carry on.

RANT: OFF

For my regular readers who secretly think I am awesome with fresh pineapple wedges, I hope you are having an ungodly great week with an exciting slate of activities for this weekend. Remember kitties are awesome as are doggies – unlike fish and lizards which are less fun to cuddle with.
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Have a kick butt (both cheeks) weekend! Peace.

sa Eminem-middle-fingers

For Love of the Game

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Sometimes it would be nice to be like Billy Chapel, utter those three magical words: Clear The Mechanism – and have the world go quiet. If you are not aware of the reference, I am quoting Kevin Costner’s character from the movie For Love of the Game. As someone who enjoys sports, it’s a great movie. As someone who can appreciate life lessons, it’s a great movie. If you just like watching Kevin Costner as an actor (maybe even in Water World), it’s a great movie. Most people know Costner’s baseball flick, Field of Dreams. In my opinion, this movie is better, mind you this is just my opinion. I think it flows better and has a bit more humor in it but both movies are a good watch for a fan of baseball or just anyone who thought they were crazy and needed to just release themselves into a story for a couple of hours.

CLEAR THE MECHANISM.

I will not give away any major plot points but in the movie, Billy is a pitcher and he uses a mind trick to block out the crowd noise so he can focus on his pitching. It’s something he has done for years and years. The Clear The Mechanism incantation has always worked until the moment when he thinks he needs it most. In uncharted waters how will Billy fare without it? I guess you will have to watch for yourself. This is not just a dude film about sports, ladies and sensitive gentlemen will enjoy the parallel story unfolding as well.
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For those out there who are able to enjoy the silence, I wish you a kick butt Monday. I do not think today is going to be a good one for me personally but perhaps it may yet turn out alright. Time will tell.

Peace.

Biking

I want to ride a bike. I would like to ride a bicycle. Let’s go!

Queen – Bicycle Race   ** Beware ** Not Work Friendly
sillyblast
At a young age, I learned to ride a bike in Florissant, Missouri. I also tried to learn how to roller skate on a sidewalk with very poor results (Note: This was before moms made you wear a helmet, elbow pads, knee pads, etc). Once my parents moved out to the ‘sticks’ of Dittmer, I got the equivalent of a mountain bike (non-motorized). Chunky tires and all the torque my chubby little legs could muster. The one I got when I was ten years old was maroon-ish and I took it down many wooded trails and occasionally onto a dirt road (or Highway WW to Highway H in Fletcher – shhh don’t tell mom).
oldhome
In the subsequent years after moving out of the sticks, I have had other bikes, mostly ten-speed versions. It is nice to get on a bike and glide away down a bike trail at a park or such. For me the experience is so much more enjoyable than just walking. The problems I encounter are linked to sightseeing in this manner. My A-D-D distracts me from the task of not running over podiatrists, laser barriers, animals, other cyclingists or debris on the path. If I have in ear buds with a cool playlist, the smile factor increases. The best times of year to ride are when the temperatures are mild because who really wants to exert themselves when it’s 100 degrees outside (sweating in every imaginable crevice – EEEWWW!) or when the air is so cold it feels like tiny razors are tearing off your face.
redbike
Presently I do not own a bike. Storing and transporting it tends to be more of a hassle than I want to deal with plus I didn’t go biking all that much when I had one – mostly due to the storing, maintaining and transporting – it’s a vicious Catch-22. Perhaps if I ever hit a big lotto payoff and build my compound, I will install a couple of bike paths. One of the paths will circle the softball complex and the other one will criss-cross the entire 75 acre plot of land.  Yes, I have a dream complex all laid out that has evolved over the years – especially whenever the Powerball is several hundred million dollars. It’s fun to be a kid and dream a little from time to time.
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In the meantime, maybe I will try to organize a weekend trip to the Katy Trail (you can rent bikes for reasonable amount). The entire day would consist of breakfast/brunch, riding, lunch, more riding and then a group get together for a Mexican night of drinking, food and having fun. I guess I need to save up a few dollars and plan this event around some softball time.
katytrail
So until I get some helmet time to see if I look cute in it, hope everyone has a chance to enjoy their weekend.
Pig-Riding
May the Minions bring you peace.

minion

Podcast

Good evening! So tonight marks my second foray into the world of podcasting. My first ‘episode’ was around a minute long and this second one was around five minutes long.

My Podcast on PodBean – ScottLatta

The podcast format and flow is still a work in progress but I think it is kind of fun so I think I will stick with it and see if maybe I get a little better at it. Perhaps incorporating some background music (not just the howling wind outside) will help? In addition to the PodBean app on my phone, maybe next I see what this Vine craze is all aboot eh?
podbean
On the cusp of Friday morning here in the ides of February, I just wanted to check in and wish everyone a happy Spring Training week. It has been a long and strife-filled winter for me and some of my friends but I feel like with spring in the wings – things are looking up. A little sprinkle of positivity can go a long way and just when things seem the most bleak, BAM! – everything can start leading you back into the light.
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This weekend I will trek to the nearby Imperial/Arnold area and play some men’s softball at the Arnold Elks field. In my inventory of equipment, I have my newer fielding glove from last year, a newly acquired used Mizuno Blackout composite bat, an upgrade on the roller bat bag for hauling my things around (camera, bats, gloves, shoes, belts, snacks, etc) and a newly purchased 2015 Hyundai Sonata for styling to and from softball. I have no idea what things the universe has in store for me in 2016 (fame? fortune? heartbreak? super-powers?) but I look forward to smiling and enjoying each and every day with the people I care about.

Good luck to everyone today. I hope you have something wonderful happen in your life and you somehow attribute the good vibes back to something I put out into the universe.

Peace.

Let’s be vague

So have you ever been talking to someone and they start off a story using pronouns for stuff you weren’t 100% sure of in the definitive sense and after a couple of minutes you are completely lost and about ready to bop them in the face with a water-logged stuffed animal?

Pronoun Me

OK on an unrelated side note: I think it is highly questionable for a woman to walk into her place of employment wearing a pair of black (see-through) leggings with bright pink underwear underneath. On top she was wearing gray cropped sweater that stopped short of her hips. There should have been some sort of fashion police task force waiting to pull this woman aside before she entered the building and been like: I’m sorry ma’am but this is a class 4 fashion felony. You need to come with us and get your mug shot taken. As many, many memes have said – Leggings are NOT pants!
leggins
Side note number two: To the guy who visited the building cafeteria and got breakfast (bacon and eggs with what looked like cheese and red peppers) and then proceeded to detour to the men’s room while leaving his breakfast on the table 10 feet away from where people expel various forms of waste – let’s cue the upchucking noises. On a cellular level, I was horrified to see food in that setting. First off that restroom (on the first floor) always has a very strong (fecal) smell. Secondly the dudes who visit that restroom are not very good about containing their leavings to the designated receptacles. Thirdly, some of the visitors to that restroom leave after doing their business without washing their hands. (Almost threw up in my mouth thinking about this trifecta.) I nearly made a citizen’s choice of conscious to pick up the cooling breakfast and put it into the nearby trash can but I refrained. In the movies, this person usually turns out to be patient zero before the undead outbreak. Let’s hope my inaction in this situation does not doom mankind.
gross toilet
Fractured thoughts in progress…

Pitchers and catchers report this week for spring training physicals! Winter is almost over.
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OK as of today the weather is set to be around 60 degrees for this upcoming weekend for a softball tourney I am set to play in. Let’s see how much that forecast degrades over the next several days.
ManagerKillsEnthusiasm
If you are singing along to my blog at home to the tune of Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody I commend you. If you have recorded your vocal stylings – please upload the file to Youtube and I will link to this piece for my dedicated readers.

Panic! at the Disco Cover

Since I am unable to follow a linear train of thought, I will take a bow and respectfully urge you to vote in the upcoming election for Pedro.
pedro
Have a great day after Monday. Peace.

Topical

Good morning on the eve of Saturday the 13th. It is mercifully Friday again so let’s do what we need to do so we can get to the free time portion of today.
wrongday
So I was thinking while driving into work this morning about the immortal comedian George Carlin. The world lost his brilliant mind the day before my 36th birthday. His library of comedy material is extensive and the majority of it is timeless. Occasionally he would talk about people in the present news (Ronald Reagan, Richard Pryor, etc) but for the most part he would generalize to pull in life experiences and observations that happen in most everyone’s daily lives.
Carnegie
It sounds weird to say you miss someone whom you have never officially met but it’s true I do miss the man. I was first exposed to his mind by watching a VHS tape of his special Carlin at Carnegie (recorded 1982 in New York City). I watched this VHS tape using a top-loading VCR that featured a remote control with a cord. The remote control had four buttons: Play, Rewind, Fast Forward and Stop.
vcr
These two things just made this piece topical. VCR for one and a comedy show from almost 35 years ago. Dating material is easy, like talking about: a Razor flip phone, parachute pants, Myspace, Windows 98, beanie babies, Derek Jeter, Michael Jordan, Monica Lewinsky, OJ Simpson, Y2K, the Budweiser lizards, 8-track tapes, the band KISS, Ozzy Osbourne as a TV star, The Notebook movie, Angelina Jolie adopting babies…oh wait that isn’t topical – that’s perpetual.
y2k
In my blog writing I try to balance the topical, as I do like to jump in on some trending topics (STL Rams / LA Rams), along with some goofy things that occur to me about relationships, cats, children, weather, house work and many other common place things.
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OK so let’s all buck up and go chasing that red dot until we catch it and never let it get loose again.
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Fingers crossed that things turn out the way you hope they do. Peace.

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Essential Tremor

Good day! It is very crisp and chilly here in the Show Me state. My complaints about the cold are legendary among my friends…yet I still end up doing ridiculous things (outdoors) like playing softball when the temperatures are in the 20’s and the like. That scenario seems likely for this Saturday unless the forecast has a radical realignment (C’mon southern jet-stream!!)

So the title of this post is Essential Tremor and the condition is also known as kinetic tremor. Below is a brief synopsis.

Shaking occurs with simple tasks such as tying shoelaces, writing, or shaving. Symptoms may be aggravated by stress, fatigue, caffeine, and temperature extremes.

Essential Tremor – Quick Overview

The reason I bring this topic up is; a good friend of mine, that I have played ball with and against for years, recently broke through the pleasantries of hey how are ya doing and other small talk between games of a tourney to ask about my hands. He said I noticed for awhile that your hands shake and I always wanted to ask about it but I didn’t want to pry. Do you have Parkinson’s (disease)?

I only really started playing softball with any regularity in 2004. But for the majority of that time I have been affected by essential tremor. The symptoms really do not affect my ‘ability’ to play softball. I can minimize the shaking in my hands by holding a bat or putting my hands in my pockets or holding a heavy camera. Luckily my camera has a built-in mechanism to offset the shakiness so the majority of pictures I take turn out clear. Occasionally, in between innings, someone will comment, “dude you are shaking.” I usually just play it off by saying yeah I always shake. Most people I have played around a long time are aware of the phenomenon and don’t make a big deal about it.

So back to my friend’s concerned inquiry. I informed him I do not have Parkinson’s but instead I have Essential Tremor. I’ve had multiple discussions with my last two doctors and they have assured me that I do not have Parkinson’s and based on my family history I should be OK. As far as the Essential Tremor symptoms and treatments (there is no cure) – there really isn’t much that can be done except some experimental medications that like most treatments – the side effects tend to be worse that the condition itself with no guarantee of improvement.

But I was genuinely touched by his concern. In this world of pseudo friends, it was nice that someone whom I do not see all that often expressed some concern for my well being. The shaking in my hands can be minimized  by reducing stress, limiting caffeine, getting plenty of sleep and not smoking. Well one out four is something right? lol

Luckily I am on the lesser end of the spectrum for symptoms. I do not suffer from facial twitches, neck spasms, speech variations or leg twitches. In my professional life, it does tend to present challenges when being in front of a group or in interview situations where your demeanor and actions are scrutinized. In these situations, I try to keep my movements fluid or keep my hands clasped to keep the shaking from being as noticeable. Because in a professional environment, someone seeing your hands shaking could interpret that as you being nervous or un-confident. In turn your employer or potential employer may lack faith in your ability to do your job – no matter how well you may perform the duties necessary.

But never fear my faithful readers, I will forge ahead with my blog pieces no matter how jittery my fingers get (currently drinking a Full Throttle Energy Drink after a long irritating drive into the office on top of getting three or so hours of sleep).

I hope this piece was a bit insightful and a tiny glimpse into my daily life for you. Everyone has their obstacles in everyday life, but you keep climbing to get over them.

Until the next time, Happy Hump Day and peace to you.

My Superbowl Commercial

SB50
So the BIG GAME was yesterday…and mercifully football is done for about six months. Don’t get me wrong I like football and I partake in fantasy football every year (I won my one and only league this year! yep that’s me bragging a little) but for everything there is a season. Now the season changes…to baseball (and softball). Pitchers and catchers report soon and the meaningless games of spring training will commence shortly thereafter. I always enjoy this time of year, trying to break free from the grasp of Old Man Winter and embrace the bi-polarness of Mother Nature in Missouri. Two days ago I playing a softball tourney in short sleeves and shorts in mild, pleasant temps…today I am wearing long pants, a long sleeve shirt covered with a zip up sweat shirt and a coat with a scarf to go outside and scrape the frozen rain off of my car. Mother Nature sometimes just needs a hug and some chocolate.

Anyway, since my bank account was a little light this year, I was once again unable to submit a commercial to run during the uber-premium viewing time of the Super Bowl game. But if I had the funds and a concept, could it really be any worse than the Baby-Monkey-Pug commercial thing? Seriously I have no clue what company that was promoting because I was creepily repulsed and yet trying to understand why the baby legs did not topple the other segments over into a face-plant. So if I had to compose my own spot for 30 seconds I think I would boil it down into something like this:
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A still photo of Christina Aguilera in a black top opposite a still photo of Britney Spears in a very unflattering black dress. Christina’s mouth opens (in the South Park style of speaking) and Terrance’s voice, of Terrance and Phillip fame, speaks: “Britney pull my finger!” Then Britney’s mouth opens (again in the South Park style of speaking) and in Phillip’s voice, speaks: “No way Christina! Last time I pulled your finger, you farted in my mouth! Ha Ha!” But all of a sudden the screen freezes and swirls like a Dairy Queen employee making a Strawberry Cheese-quake Blizzard. While the screen churns, an unseen omnipotent voice sounding a lot like James Earl Jones after he has taken a hit off of a helium balloon says (as the words appear to be typed in a block font on-screen):
cheesequake
Go To Google.com
Search for: Scott Latta Blog
You. Are. Welcome.
Britney-Spears-Christina-Aguilera
Five seconds later the screen returns to normal showing Britney being farted on by Christina who is bent to resemble the capital letter L. <<<THE END>>>
SBCheck
That would have cost $5,000,000.00. Sure. Do they take a check?
Megamind
Now you say, c’mon you can do better than that! And yes I could draw up a concept where Megamind cackles as Harry Potter is strapped to a table and a high powered laser is steadily making it’s way to intersecting with Harry’s right eye under his Lightning scar. The laser dot is centered on Harry’s closed eyelid so when he finally opens his eye, the laser activates something in his pupil…and the viewer is pulled into the pool of his inner eye. Something starts to take form out of the inky blackness but before you can decipher that shifting shape…my picture appears…and I say: Google Me. I dare you! (Scott Latta Blog)
cuteness kittty
Advertising is expensive business especially for that one night. Oh well, I will start saving up for next year. And who knows, if I should win the Powerball lotto (like a really, really big one) I fully intend to make this a reality. But the concept by then may just be me and my metamorphosis into being a full time softball playing cat lady. Stay tuned.
googleme
Peace and fully belly to everyone.

14 Banana Stickers

So on a typical day I sit at my desk surrounded by banana stickers stuck to a computer monitor stand. There are stickers from Dole and Chiquita. If you had to fathom a guess as to which brand had more stickers, taking into account it could be a tie, which side would you choose?
banana-sticker
I’ll give you a second or two to embrace your inner gambler. (Cue the Jeopardy theme music)
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OK so what did you decide: Chiquita, Dole or Tie?
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Drum-roll: Chiquita had 6 stickers…so Dole wins with 8! Apparently none of my bananas come from Canada as the countries on the stickers were predominately Honduras, Mexico and Guatemala in the order of prevalence.
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Sufficiently bored? Let me keep going. I am usually chasing my bananas with a 12 or 16 oz can of Full Throttle energy drink – you know, to offset the positive of the banana with the specter of death by caffeine!
ft
We are about a week and a half away from a February holiday that everyone in the U.S. is keenly aware of…of course I am speaking of that mega holiday known as President’s Day! Although the day was originally created to commemorate the first president George Washington (who’s birthday is actually February 22, 1732 – he would have been 284 this year but since he died in December of 1799 he cannot be with us today), the day is now considered to encompass all past presidents – even Jimmy Carter. The holiday is now celebrated on the third Monday of the month of February (since 1971). The holiday’s observance on the third Monday of February was created by the government to give the nation’s workers an additional day off of work (three day weekend) without creating unnecessary absenteeism – it’s the truth, I cannot tell a lie!
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So for those of you who will be sitting around in rose receipts with chocolate smeared across your face from the previous day – try to enjoy that President’s Day like our fore fathers would have!

Wooden teeth and peace to you!

Weather…

So the weather today is…
Weather-app
Did you really think I was going to talk about the weather when there are so many other topics to cover? There’s politics, there’s upcoming alentine’s ay (for people who wont be getting the V or the D that day), there’s bag salad recalls because of listeria, there’s a star exploding about 8 trillion light years away right now and the list goes on and on. So if you really want to know about the weather, I’m pretty sure there’s an app for that.
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What I really want to talk about today is hugs and cuddling. Yeah I’m being serious. That stuff is the bomb. Unless you are in a sauna, hugs and cuddling are quite nice. I do not know if there are any scientific studies on hugs and cuddling releasing toxins from your body, but if done properly and with an appropriate person it can give you a warm and fuzzy. Now if done wrong – say with someone who is warm and fuzzy and in a sauna – then yes you may forever be scarred and disappreciate them respectively. For the record I do not think disappreciate is a legit word – but much like the usage of the word ‘fetch’ from the movie Mean Girls – I intend to make this happen. Hopefully it doesn’t wander down the lonely path of Google+. Stay tuned.
gretchenfetchhappen422 googleplus
Now, in theory, if done correctly you can parlay hugs into cuddling. If the person is receptive to the hug and the embrace lasts for several long seconds and there is a couch or bed within a foot or two of you, you can oh so casually throw your body weight in the direction of the couch or bed and then wrap your legs around them like an octopus and soothing say “Shhhh shhhh it’s OK, stop screaming and let’s cuddle.”
hugger
This method has not been field tested yet so maybe it’s best to cuddle up to a person of prior receptive affectionation (again dunno if this word exists) who is already lying down with perhaps pillows and a blanket. You can situate yourself in the ‘little spoon’ or ‘big spoon’ positions or use their booty as a pillow or the leg grapevine in the face-to-face position. Please note: The face to face scenario can quickly lose traction if the other person was watching television or if your breath is questionable.
friends
Only a few positions really fail the universal cuddling protocol. For instance, the inverted ride on my shoulders position – not all that cuddly, the full body 69 where each person’s toes are the other person’s face – bleck is all I need to say here and of course, putting the other person in figure-four leg lock – also not all that soothing and endearing. So if you can avoid these pitfalls you should be in there like swimwear on the cuddling slow boat to good vibes and sometimes napping.
pitfall_crocs
So in summary, hug and snuggle someone today – even if it is just your cute pet. Do it! That is an order! 🙂
snugglekitty
Peace and Tuesday to you!