Friday Montage

OK here are some images to sum up my day from a parallel mental perspective…

fire-breathingpenguinsdragonberry slurpeeDCA Carebearcubes-in-the-freezerkittysnowGross Handsvomitdeuces

Peace out…

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Hugs

Hello and happy post Hump Day. If you just got done listening to my podcast from this morning I bet you are pretty jazzed about how you spent that 35 minutes. The imagery! The thrills! The heartache! The perfectly mono-toned delivery! But really you should maybe think about considering checking it out or if your attention span tends to skew shorter…check out my Twitter feed. Lots upon lots of thoughts, quotes and videos.

So after I finished my piece on the Bumper Sticker (GO SEE A PLAY), I started churning on another topic. Hugs. Think back to the first hug you remember or the last memorable hug if you tend to reformat your internal hard drive frequently. Was it a consolation hug? Was it a I missed you hug? Was it a congratulatory hug? Was the hug subterfuge so you could stealthily pick the person’s pocket? Did you instigate the hug or did the other person? Group hug? Not going to lie, I’m a big fan of hugs – even the awkward ones or ones where the other person may have skipped that day for their under arm protection.

As a child of semi-cuteness growing up I was often hugged. Of course, my mom hugged me frequently along with teachers, babysitters, girls who were always to be ‘just friends’ and even good dude friends. Over the years I would say I have been hugged more than 30,000 times. At a decent sized softball tourney I can rack up 30-40 in a day. Some are polite and last a second or two and those are nice. In my opinion though, the best ones are shared with someone you care deeply about and last for ‘awhile’. You know what I’m talking about, the ones where the other person fiercely embraces you and squeezes you tightly…just locks you in and shuts everything else out. Those lasting yet fleeting seconds are the best.

OK now don’t judge me but the hug game changed significantly for me once I hit middle school. There was a redheaded girl named Deanna that was new at the school for that one year and then she was gone. She was a bit more ‘developed’ than some of the other girls and being as she was new she didn’t know every scrap of stupid history I had at my small school (Grandview R-2, Hillsboro, MO). I was able to approach her and befriend her a little in my dorky way. One day our class went on a field trip and I got to share a seat with Deanna. I’m surprised I was able to carry on any sort of conversation as my heart was hammering in my chest nearly the whole ride there and back. I honestly do not remember where the field trip went but I could tell you that she had her hair down, she wore a long multicolor skirt and a light blue top. Someone at the back of the bus was playing Quiet Riot via cassette on their radio. After we got back to the school and got off the bus, she said I was a great listener and gave me a quick friendly hug. Inside I was feeling really really good, like those cartoon characters where their eyes transform into hearts and pulsate. Ah yes, the days of puppy love and nary a text was sent nor a dick pic for that matter. For this was a time long ago before technology ruled the land. Just a near teenage boy mooning over a near teenage girl who thought about him as sensually as a stranded motorist who has run out of gas thinks about the nearest gas station. This was the story of most of my teenage life. Scott likes girl, girl thinks Scott is nice and sweet and pursues douchebag dudes instead and then circles back to complain to Scott about douchebag dudes. C’est la vie!

So however you get your hugs: family, pets, friends, strippers, etc – there are very few instances where hugs are a bad thing (drunken pants-less hugs within the confines of a church during service is perhaps an example of one). Hug it out and enjoy the rest of your today.

Peace.

A year later…

Long days and pleasant nights my friends.

king
In scrolling through the pictures on my iPhone I noticed one I took of my ticket to Citi Field in New York to watch the New York Mets take on the Philadelphia Phillies. The date on the ticket was April 15th. That day I traveled by subway to the stadium and back to the hotel I was staying at for business (the game was after business hours). The game was entertaining and the weather was beautiful. Ultimately the hometown Mets took care of business in defeating the rebuilding Phillies 6-1. I enjoyed the contest even though I had no real rooting interest in who won but I was monitoring the scoreboard for my Indians in their game with the Chicago White Sox (Indians won their game 4-2). After the fact, it’s hard to believe I was watching a team that would finish the year so close to winning the World Series. And they would’ve won too if it weren’t for those pesky kids (Kansas City Royals). End with Scooby Doo engulfing a huge sub sandwich. Hee Hee Hee.

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So besides the opening homage to the Dark Tower series (The Gunslinger) by Stephen King and the little trip down memory lane, where am I going with this piece? Hard to say for sure as I am having a difficult time staying focused today. My trip a year ago to The Big Apple is/was my only trip to that city to date. So many great memories from that week, it would be nice to go there again sometime.

If I had to guess a reason for my disfocus, I am leaning towards blaming Katy Perry as I am listening to her rendition of California Girls with Snoop Dogg. Now you can probably understand why I would be distracted seeing as he is the God Father of Rap…and plus there’s Candyland Katy Perry.

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Perhaps I will spend some time today combing through Google for ideas for my next tattoo. I already have the rough concept: a totem pole of horror – but I am not sure of the composition of the three or four characters within the pole. Initially I was scheduled to go under the tattooing needle(s) next month but with several expenses coming up in the next few months I postponed until September. This will allow me to tweak the concept art for Matt Hodel of Ragtime Tattoo and also make sure the necessary expenses are covered before splurging on body art. One other point I am undecided on is the location for the piece. Presently my upper chest is taken up with my previous two tattoos and I am not too keen on putting a piece on my stomach mostly for pain considerations. So that leaves upper arms, shoulder or perhaps a leg piece. I refuse to get a tattoo in the ‘tramp stamp’ region or someplace where I cannot readily view the art. Tattoos, in my opinion, are for yourself first and what’s the point of sitting for the art and spending the money if you cannot see it? For the style I am contemplating a new school vibe but it will depend on color choices and again location on my b-o-d-y. Stay tuned…or if you have some cool art suggestions please email them to me at: scottlatta@gmail.com

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As we ramp up into swimsuit and floating season I hope to run into you on a river somewhere soon. Cheers!

Before I click the ‘X’ to finish this post off, please note the link to my bracket below that I picked for the hockey playoffs. With one series in the first round pending I have correctly picked the winner in all the series not involving a New York team. Particularly worth noting is that I picked the St Louis Blues to advance beyond the Chicago Blackhawks in the first round (although I missed the amount of games it would take – 7 versus my guess of 6) despite their recent years of struggling in playoff series. So congrats to the St Louis Blues and their fans. It was a hard-fought, tooth-and-nail-biting situation and the good guys won this round. I don’t really dislike the Blackhawks because I like their coach (Joel Quenneville). He was unfairly run out of St Louis only to land in Chicago and bring them multiple Stanley Cup victories. Kudos on your victories Coach Q. From here on out though, all bets are off. If you listen on YouTube to comedian Bill Burr’s podcast, he has openly stated he is pulling for the Blues to take it all. As they say, “Time will tell”.

Bracket Challenge – NHL Playoffs

Peace.

Bumper Sticker

Greetings and salutations! Today I am unapologetically unapologetic.

So while driving back from Indian ball this weekend I was in the lane next to the fast lane on highway 55 and about to zip into the interchange that would take me onto highway 270 (Chicago)  when I looked left and saw a goldish Nissan Sentra that had seen better days. On the Sentra was a bumper sticker not on the back bumper but on the metal strip above the license plate. The bumper sticker was a simple navy blue rectangle with a simple non-serif font of text that read: GO SEE A PLAY.
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Most people would read these four words and understand the simple direct message and consider the suggestion. Maybe it’s because I play a lot of softball or because the day before I played a midnight tournament or because I had just left playing Indian ball (quasi softball) but these four words conjured up a different connotation. Let me explain.
PLAY
The obvious context of GO SEE A PLAY is an appeal to the artistic community to go see a play performed with actors at a theater or at a venue that accommodates such productions. In that moment, my brain interpreted the sentence from a sports perspective: Go, see a play! As in watch a baseball fielder make a great catch, see a hockey player smash a slapshot for a goal or something along those lines of your own sports preference.

It occurred to me a couple minutes later that what I took for a really cool sports bumper sticker was actually targeted at a different audience. I was still alright with the message but I liked my take on its meaning a little better. So in that vein: Go, See a Play …and GO INDIANS! My Cleveland Indians made a few more plays than the Detroit Tigers this past weekend and I enjoyed their three game sweep of the Tigers (in Detroit no less)! As they say, it’s still early so I can enjoy these little moments. As of this moment, my Indians have a better record (by winning percentage) than the St Louis Cardinals and the San Francisco Giants who are perennially better over the long haul.

Everyone have a spiffy if not outright wowwie Monday.

Peace.

Epilogue:

To mesh the two worlds of art and sport – GO SEE A PLAY – overlays nicely with a baseball game. The team you root for is the beloved hero and the opposing team is the hated villain. “An unscripted play, a baseball game is” says Master Yoda. The other team is embracing the Darkside, evil itself. It is the solemn responsibility of your team to defeat evil and save the day. The ending doesn’t always play out that way but pull for your team…until bitter end sometimes.

Lives Matter Period

Saw something rant-worthy or perhaps not. It was a sign that read, “Black Lives matter”. This sign should say “Non-racist lives matter” which is to say…ALL LIVES MATTER. Enough of the Black This, White That. The premise of equality is that in all things pretend all parties involved are blind and cannot tell the color of your skin and no one is shown preferential treatment over something superficial and irrelevant. Let a person’s actions, words and intentions speak for themselves. The only caveat here is if the person has an annoying voice – then you can choose to not like them for that aspect or politely ask them to never speak in your presence.

This PSA has been brought to you by a hypocritical society of ridiculousness.

Have a great day among others competing in the human race.

Peace.

April 19th – Tuesday

Good afternoon to you and hopefully your healthy fingernails.
You just checked out your own fingernails didn’t you? Don’t lie.
avgJo
Today I am suffering from what is commonly known as fat finger syndrome or FFGSsdAFD. Dang fat gingers. Fingers! Oy vey! It’s amazing I can get anything out on the screen. Luckily I can cut and paste to limit my need to place my fingers on the keys. To this point, I was looking on Google and Ebay for an Average Joe’s Gym t-shirt from the movie Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story. Of course I mistyped the search string. Instead of Average Joe’s Gym – omitting the apostrophe, I typed: Average Jose Gym. Not going to lie, my subconscious was amused for a second. I feel based on my current fitness level, it would only be fitting to seek out a shirt of a fictitious fitness center with low standards as my jumping off point to get in shape.
ebay
For those who are curious about how my first official league night of (coed) softball went for Mondays at the Wolffs Softball Haven – it went well. Minimal injuries outside of a bad hop in the outfield that slightly bruised my breast bone to report. On the hitting side I did OK, even socked my first home run of the session to left center field that landed a good six or seven feet behind the fence. From a team perspective we swept both games, winning the first one by a few runs and the second contest in bottom of the 8th inning (extra frame) by one.
softball
All in all it was a dusty, muggy good time. No softball action on the schedule for tonight but I do return to the diamond at Fenton Park for a single game on Wednesday. Normally the session would be double headers but due to the flooding and damage caused a couple of months ago the powers that be decided to make the schedule all jacked up for everyone by playing single games instead of doing double headers and mixing in some byes until the park is fully repaired. What…ever.

To those out there who may read my blog and are having a bad time of it: chin up, this too shall pass – it just really sucks right now. As always if you would like to chat me up I can be found on all the usual means of communication: Text, Facebook IM, Tweet, Snapchat and good old fashioned phone calls.

Enjoy today…don’t wait for tomorrow because it may be completely different than you expect.

bacon-emoji.

Peace.

Infinite monkey theorem plus auto-correct

Good morning and welcome to this week!

On occasion my train of thought shoots down an unseen corridor. Sometimes the signal comes back like someone pinging your router…sometimes the signal is lost altogether. This could have sinister overtones. Was the signal ambushed and then tortured for information before being snuffed out? Or maybe the signal is like me in real life and prone to getting lost without GPS support. No one can say for sure what the correct answer may be.

So late Friday night after Tyler and Elisha’s wedding reception, I was taking a very short drive home and pretty much out of nowhere an idea tapped me on the shoulder. There was an old theory that if you had an infinite amount of typewriters (kids today will have to do a Google search on what this is) and an infinite amount monkeys typing on those typewriters – that eventually one of the monkeys would produce a significant piece of literature just at random. Infinity can be a fickle b!tch.
Monkey-typing
This was always just a goofy theory and I understand the reasoning behind it in scientific circles (read Ian Malcolm from Jurassic Park fame, Chaos Theory). However, given the advances in technology and replace the typewriter with say an iPad or computer with Microsoft Word (auto-correct in the house!). OK now the same rules apply with hypothetical infinite monkeys and infinite amounts of either of these devices – this goofy theory now becomes more of a real possibility.

I realize some of you may still be digesting this updated spin on the old concept and for those still turning it over in your mind, let me hop to another monkey motif in the form of the 1996 drama featuring leading men Bruce Willis and Brad Pitt: 12 Monkeys. In the film there are not infinite monkeys but there is a killer virus that is to somehow spread across the globe killing 99% of the population. Bruce’s character is deemed insane (because he says he’s from the future, duh) and Brad Pitt’s character actually is insane as he is the leader of the Army of the 12 monkeys. If you have a two hour block of time and like Bruce or Brad you may like the movie, then again you may not. It’s a dark movie obviously. I would term it gritty and somewhat tedious but to each their own.
twelve-monkeys
So back on topic, the race is on. Will the infinite fictitious monkeys produce a great written work of art before myself? If you watch half of the stuff on Netflix or Hulu some would argue that a monkey has already succeeded in producing worthy art in the form of a screenplay or book adaptation. Standards are subjective so yeah who knows.

When this prophecy of sorts (monkey typists) does come to fruition, I predict it will be a story about a boy born of wizard lineage who is secretly a vampire. The backdrop will be set deep in space. The boy will unknowingly be romantically drawn to his half-sister a galaxy and a half away but because of his ancestor’s decree he will be forced to live as a female until he reaches the age of reason. Little do they know, the only way the whole of existence can be saved is by the brother and sister linking their pinky fingers together and singing all seven verses of a lullaby they were both sung as infants before their respective caregivers were dispatched by enchanted murders of space crows. Time is ticking and no one alive knows how much time they have left. But there is one ‘ghost’ who is doing a little recon on behalf of a benevolent force to try to head off disaster. Can this mysterious wraith tip the scales of life and death back to the light? But is it for the benefit of good or evil?

Oh, I can hardly wait to read how this one turns out! Def in the Sci-Fi genre.

Hope your week unfolds in an interesting but positive form.

Peace.

Day of the Dead – older (Timehop for blog?) 2014?

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So last weekend I went camping and floating which is a popular summertime activity. It usually consists of arriving on Friday night (check). Setting up a tent (check). Waiting for any additional friends to arrive (check). Eyeball or checkout the surrounding camper personnel (check).

After everyone arrives and all their stuff is unloaded and tents setup then the socializing starts. Consuming alcohol, creating a camp fire and unwinding are accomplished. Shenanigans ensue with drinking games and search parties heading into the woods after dark to look for firewood.

Saturday is normally the ‘float’ day. This is where you get to checkout the entire campgrounds idea of what makes them look good. We were in a very crowded and rambunctious site. Tons of bikinis on females and shirtless dudes as far as the eye could see – for better or worse in each category. Everyone hits the river to float in a raft or canoe or kayak. From there pretty much anything goes.

On the river, some people just lay on the raft and tan themselves. Some get out of the raft and float in inner tubes. Some throw footballs or a Frisbee or squirt river water with squirt guns. Then there are the daredevils who climb up rock formations and ‘cliff dive’ in the deeper parts of the river. Most of these river goers are consuming alcohol and having a great time.

Then after the river has run its course and the float is done – then everyone adjourns to their campsite for more drinking, eating and merriment. This normally lasts into the wee early hours of morning depending on the campground rules. If you have a ‘fun’ group, then most likely there are a few stories that will be retold about occurrences of a risque or rather embarrassing nature.

Turn the page to Sunday morning. Pack up day. Going back home day. Day of the Dead as I like to call it. The reason I call it that is because if you mentally compare the people you see on Sunday morning in sweat pants and hoodies to their previous day’s self in swim suits or their party wear – they look like extras from the Walking Dead series on A&E. Their clothes are different and most people have bedhead, a blank stare on their face and they tend to shuffle around camp.

Shout out to the Bass River Resort near Steelville, Missouri where the party was last weekend. Had fun. Played with the camp fire. Played wiffle ball. Got 6 miles worth of cardio on the river from dragging the raft through shallow spots. Saw some river hooters (not the owl variety). Played my first unsuccessful drinking game of flip cup.

This week I turn the page and head to Columbia Missouri for the Show Me Games softball tournament. Hoping to do well and bring home a winner.

Impromptu – Friday, April 15th

Good Day! Perhaps morning or afternoon or evening depending upon where on Mother Earth you reside.

After a good run of consecutive days of posting on my blog and a flurry of other activity on my other social media (Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and Podbean) I was content to take today to ‘let it breathe’ so to speak. So what am I doing here then? Well glad to see you too!
tasmanian_devil Hamburglar
All silliness aside, I have been unexpectedly allotted some ‘down time’. So I thought I would give you a excerpt in the style of the McDonald’s Hamburglar talking to the Warner Brother’s Tasmanian Devil:

Rubble rubble Rubble.

Blearrr rrragaggghhh arrrrooo!

Uhhh? Rubble rabble Ribble Rebble!

Mauw aawww grooot blearrr blearrr blearrr!

Whew. Thought that might escalate. Glad they were able to come to some common ground there at the end.

Wait. What’s that Swedish Chef from the Muppet Show?
Swedish-Chef
Hergy de bergy de floof floof! Bort bort!

I guess you could say that but something like that could be misconstrued and I don’t want to painted as someone who might have said that.

As the title would suggest, this piece was an impromptu throw-together piece so if it seems a tad on the fluffy side and less on the substantial side I will let the criticism rest there.
lp
If you had the ability to shrink yourself to the size of a BB pellet, I could stick you inside the ear piece of my head phones and you could also listen to the Linkin Park album Hybrid Theory. Although…that could potentially be fatal to you based on the volume level I like and the fragile state of your body in a micro form. Based upon this new information, I am rescinding your invitation (like a vampire) and you are no longer welcome in your miniscule format within the confines of my ear canal.

Well it appears my window of freedom from duties has expired so I will step back and wish you a good day.

Peace.

Throwback, not throw away

Greetings and thank you for stopping by today.

Def Leppard X album

zune player sony

As I sit here listening to the 2002 Def Leppard album entitled simply “X” on my Zune player (released November 2006 – discontinued June 2012) I am aware of the need in today’s society to recycle or flat out just throw things away. This seed started to sprout in my brain last night as I was cleaning out my golf bag.

River Lakes Golf Course Columbia Illinois

The golf bag and a set of eight clubs was purchased from a pawn shop nearly a decade ago for the reasonable price of $35. My good friend Commish of Lager Slugger fame (his real name is Joe) invited me to play a Saturday round of golf at a local course just across the river in Columbia, Illinois called River Lakes. Seeing as I had never played before, I did not have any clubs. Joe made a call to his brother Tiny (his real name is Jeff) who at the time worked at a pawn shop. Joe set up the tee time and when I showed up to the course, he presented me with the used but in decent condition set of clubs. Tiny said they were on loan from the pawn shop but if I liked them he could cut me a deal for $35 to purchase them. Just a cursory browse online at the time told me this was a no-brainer as a bag alone was probably $25 and a decent driver (type of club) would cost anywhere from $20 up to a few hundred dollars. We played that day as a foursome and to alleviate any suspense…I was far and away the worst golfer of the four. But I had fun and by the end of the round I was making some adjustments and working things out. Don’t get me wrong I still played horrible but my competitive nature and mental approach led me to believe I could get better if I played more, so I agreed to purchase the clubs and put them in my car to take home.

Lager Sluggers softballAs I am a hack golfer, I still have that same set of clubs but I have added a few specialty clubs and a couple new drivers (I actually broke two drivers, I strong!). Alas the original bag came to the end of the road with me last night. My mom’s new husband Bill got a fancy new golf bag for Christmas (did I mention they live on a golf course?) and offered to let me have his old golf bag which was practically unused. Naturally I said suuuuuure! The one he was giving me was lighter, cleaner, and had legs to let it stand on its own – which my previous bag did not feature. So last night I swapped the contents of my old bag into my new bag and it got me wanting to play again. The last time I played was probably a year and half ago with my long time friend Matt. Neither one of us is anything to brag about on the golf course, but if you took his short game and put it with my driving ability off the tee and meshed a hybrid of the two of our middle shots – we might be a bogey or par golfer consistently.
Matt Wallach golfing beer me
So after the bag was cleaned out, I looped the strap over my shoulder and headed for the dumpster with the rest of the household trash. Arriving at the dumpster, I paused for a moment after throwing in the bags of refuse. The bag itself was not completely trashed but still quite serviceable (if not a bit unsightly). So instead of tossing it on top of the trash bags and broken furniture fragments, I simply leaned it against the dumpster in case someone may get the notion to prolong it’s purpose in life. Good luck old golf bag.

Here’s to hoping for nice weather for awhile so you can get out and golf or enjoy your preferred outside activity of choice.

If you get a moment or twenty minutes, check out my latest podcast on Podbean (Google search: podcast podbean scottlatta) or any of the other older ones too!

Peace.

Remember:   Drive for show, putt for dough.   ~~ Commish ~~

Fenced In

So greetings and welcome once again (I assume you have been here before) to my blog of thoughts!

Ginger Dog

Recently my girlfriend and I have been looking at the possibility of buying a house. Presently we live in a townhouse in the middle of a larger complex alongside a very busy and noisy street. The complex does have a playground and a pool and several dumpsters but nothing is quite the same as owning your own space. Yes renting does have it’s upside: free maintenance, no long term commitments and a plethora of people watching opportunities. But being able to own your home and customize it and ‘nest’ if you will can be more satisfying. The downside is that is also tends to be a bit more expensive and the risk goes up significantly.

If the stove breaks the renter calls the landlord to fix it at no cost but the homeowner is forced to call a repairman or contemplate buying a new one if the other is unfixable – probably not cheap either way for the homeowner. But the renter generally cannot do any real decorating or landscaping for their place, whereas a homeowner can put in a garden, build a fire pit or add a hot tub. So I guess it really boils down to the person or family and their lifestyle choices.

This was a roundabout introduction to a little of my philosophy on the personal habitat preference. Previous to living in the townhouse and apartments of the last few years, I did live in a house I was buying from the bank. It was a ranch style home in the Imperial area with a partially finished basement, decent sized wood deck off of the back of the house and a fenced back yard.

Now we are getting to the real heart of what I wanted to write about. In viewing a handful of homes for sale, we have traipsed through the living rooms, dining rooms, kitchens, bedrooms and the basements. Most have had decks and back yards. One of the homes we really liked had a chain-link fence on three of the four sides of the yard. On the fourth side was an older looking wood privacy fence. Seeing this was a little nostalgic as my previous house had a similar section of fencing.

In my previous home if you were standing on the back deck, the right fence line and the back fence line were chain-link about waist high. On the right side there was a small section of chain-link fence and a chain-link gate that connected the side fence to the house. On the left side between the yards there was a sad looking pointed board privacy fence that was attached to the back of the neighbors square top wood privacy fence. Connecting the left side fence to the house was a chain-link fence gate on a post and next to the gate there was about eight feet of badly rotting wood privacy fence.

The story behind the partial privacy fence was that the owner we originally purchased the house from apparently was in a feud with his neighbor to the left and when he was in the back yard he didn’t want to have to look at him. However, since the deck on the back of the house was above the basement line, if you were on the deck you couldn’t help but see the neighbor’s yard and vice versa so I don’t understand that rationale.

Anyway, on this small section of privacy fence, some of the boards were badly rotten. Just a little bit of an eyesore, no big deal right? Did I mention I had two dogs? The older one was a girl, her name was Ginger. She was part husky, part mutt and part Energizer bunny. She was colored like a yellow lab and had one brown eye and one blue eye. She was the sweetest damn dog in the whole world. Gentle and yet hyper like a five year old boy hopped up on soda and chocolate. Her running mate, Rio, was also a girl and a smaller German shepherd. Rio was smaller in size but dominant in personality unless you were a human and then she was terrified of you.
Rio Dog German Shepherd
These two when loose in the backyard, which was about 100 feet wide by about 80 feet deep, would run around for a bit before becoming zoo tigers. If you watch tigers at the zoo for awhile, they will generally pace the boundaries. My two pups would do the same and invariably they would end up by that section of rotting fence. Once I left them unattended to run inside for a few minutes to check on the laundry or make a sandwich (I forget wich, I mean which!) only to return to an empty yard!
ginger_run
After a panicked few moments I noticed a dog-sized hole in the fence about a foot up from the ground. One of the pups, I presume Rio as she was generally the instigator, appeared to have tested the fist-sized hole and found that the brittle wood would give. Luckily I was able to call Ginger to return by shouting her name and her trouble-making sister came along about 30 seconds later. I put them back in the yard and rigged some boards to cover the hole but many times after that they would both sniff and investigate that area to see if they could go on another adventure.

Years later after moving out of that house and into another one in Fenton, there was a fenced backyard. This one was chain-link with gates on the sides by the house, chain-link on the right and left sides backing to a waist-high section of plastic fencing along the back. However, at the very back left corner, there was a diagonal section gap where the left fence stopped and white plastic fence started. Since the house’s yard behind the left yard had a dog, they put up like a three foot section of wood privacy fencing. This fencing had been in place for awhile it appeared as one of the boards were rotten and cracked. And wouldn’t you know it, my dogs made a beeline for that spot on the very first day there?
Ginger Husky Blue Eye Dog
I just found it funny and a bit nostalgic how a new experience can jog your memory and make you smile and yet feel wistful at the same time. Ginger and Rio were such great dogs and I miss them. I lost Little Miss Rio (her proper name) in the spring of 2013 due to cancer of the mouth and then the next year her sister fell ill the week before my 42nd birthday and had to be put to sleep. I miss them, their stinky breath and all their quirky stupidness that comes with goofy dogs.
My Dog Ginger
I have basically lived my entire life around dogs and cats and I couldn’t imagine not having them in my daily life. It’s just funny how out of nowhere memories can unexpectedly stick a cold nose on you. Lick Lick.

If you have a real pet (no birds and ants are not real pets) remember to hug them and smile. Have a voraciously smile-filled day.

Peace.

Trump

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Good morning.

So I tried to do a Google search for search term “Trump”. Guess what I got?
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Yep like a bazillion images of Donald Trump – some featuring memes for hair care PSA’s or various freeze frames with “You’re Fired” boldly emphasized and countless others that were Photoshopped to add zoo animals, adult toys, Tupac’s body and a dizzying array of other ‘creativeness’. Hard to believe this man could really be our next president but it is a very real possibility.
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For most of the younger voting population of North America (US only), Donald Trump has been a recognizable icon for about half or more of their lives due to the reality TV show The Apprentice which debuted in 2004 on the NBC network. Obviously most people who have been around a TV have been privy to Mr Donald John Trump ‘firing’ aspiring wannabes for over a decade. In addition to the 170+ people he has fired on camera, he has had to make those decisions in real life.

Before The Apprentice sensation and subsequent decline of the hoopla surrounding the show, Donald Trump was an east coast business man. He was notorious for quickly building up a business plan and becoming wealthy on his investments and developments. He was also publicized and criticized for how quickly those ventures plateaued and then crashed throwing him into bankruptcy (multiple times). Just like his business volatility, Trump has been known for decades for saying offensive and outlandish things but his wealth and resources have always trumped any backlash.
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Just thinking about it, the man is two years older than my mom. Donny Boy will turn an even 70 this year nine days before my birthday in June. For all of the people who are put off by his brashness, I can understand your trepidation with coronating the man the next ruler of the USA. For all the people who point at his failures as a reason not to give him the reigns to the country, I ask you: what business person or just regular person for that matter hasn’t failed? Yes he has failed in business and his personal life (read: two divorces) but he bounces back due to his forward thinking, tenacity and charisma. Some of you on the non-Trump bandwagon probably just threw up in your mouths a little but it is true. Tell me I’m wrong. You can’t or else he would not be riding a tsunami of alternating positive and negative publicity. Like or hate the man, he is front and center in the fight for the White House. If you are wondering my person opinion on his candidacy, let me say that come November and if he is on the ballot I would cast my vote for him as the next president of this country.
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Now depending upon how your mind is/was made up you are either disgusted or nodding your head in approval. For those of differing opinion on this race, I can hear you mentally making a case for your candidate of choice and why they will be the perfect turn of the hypothetical Rubik’s cube to solve all six sides of issues facing this country. But let me be blunt for a second here. No matter who is chosen this fall to succeed President Obama, all the options available are no better than a scratch-off lottery ticket. The new guy or gal who steps up to the podium to accept victory and global reaching responsibility will inherit the un-fixable problems that exist today just like every incoming president before them. Whether it’s Hilary, Trump, Bernie, Big Bird or Mr T – I pity the fool who takes the job next. Healthcare is a mess. Corporate America is strangling the consumer class in this country. Racial tensions are still a hot button (thanks Mr Obama). Keep turning that Rubik’s cube to try to get to a solution and something else on the backside gets messed up trying to fix what’s right in front of your face.

OK cleansing breath. Just to lighten the mood a touch, how about this: Wouldn’t it be nice to elect a person who has first-hand experience of what it’s like to shave Vince McMahon’s head? Or someone who stood between two of the greatest wrestling legends of all-time (see Hulk Hogan and Andre The Giant)?

AndreHulktrump

Comedy intermission over (lights dim) please return to your seats. It may seem like I am making light of the presidential process and the ramifications that it will bring to this country and possible friction with existing relationships worldwide. Yes and no. Yes because half of this country is basing their opinions on pop culture references, in addition to buying into the same old promises (lies) by the other candidates. One person will not make all the difference, but the right one can help make some changes to make a difference. If you look at each candidate still standing, they each have something they could potentially do to affect a positive movement over America. On the flip side, I think each one also has the greater potential to do a serious harm to the country. So choose (your poison) wisely.
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I welcome your thoughts and counter-points. Email me, tweet me, IM me or just call/text me. You will not offend me and I like to think I keep an open mind. But with that said please be ready if I come back with something that maybe you didn’t think of…

Have a great day my friends. Peace.

StayClassy

The O.C.

Know what I like about rich kids?

(((PUNCH TO FACE)))

Nothing.

For those of you who know not what I speak of, I am quoting the defunct FOX TV series The OC. OC stands for Orange County – which is a real place in California but the characters were fictitiously living in the wealthy Newport Beach community during the years of 2003 through 2007.

The OC

The reason I bring this nine years on the shelf teen drama back to the light is, it recently surfaced on Hulu and in all my free time (as Kristi works nights) I have been binge re-watching this series. There are some actors whom have since moved into prominent new series (see Ben McKenzie – Gotham, Rachel Bilson – Heart of Dixie) and a host of cameos (see Paul Wesley – The Vampire Diaries, Kevin Sorbo – Hercules).

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Like any story set around high school aged kids, the shelf-life was limited and with the network reputation of FOX, the show was always going to be on a short leash like so many other promising concept shows (see Tru Calling – with Zach Galifianakis before he was the One Man Wolfpack). Alas the OC did produce 3.5 seasons worth of drama, mishaps and cheesy good times before the cast was scattered to the winds.

tru-calling

For those of us who embrace TV series of whatever ilk, we know the risks of investing our time and interest in such a venture. For no matter how good the story…one day the show will cease to be and all the characters just stop dead. It’s silly to be perturbed or disappointed when a show is cancelled or just runs out of story and stops. But nonetheless if the writers and actors do their job sometimes you just cannot help but get sucked in and feel as though something was taken from you. Like when the TV series FRIENDS ceased to be after 10 glorious years…it was strange to know that there would be no new updates on Chandler and Monica or did Joey find a life mate? Please don’t get me started on the crap spin-off the network did with Joey’s own show. Did Rachel eventually murder Ross and try to cover it up? Viewers need to know this stuff!

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I know some people have better things to do with their lives than read my blog or watch someone else’s creation in the form of a TV show, but me I like to be entertained. It’s enjoyable to see someone’s interpretation of what a relationship could unfold as or how a miscommunication can keep two people who seem destined to be together apart. A lot of life tends to be non-linear and these shows are a perfect example of how tiny obstacles can project as larger problems just based on perspective. Now judging the show The OC I think there is probably not that much sarcasm in real life but maybe I am just basing it on my bubble. Perhaps outside of my sphere of living there are relationships and families with snappy wit non-stop but I think someone would most likely get stabbed if that were the case.

So for anyone who has the time and the ability to stream TV programs I would recommend a few of my favorites: The OC, Friends, Cheers, Tru Calling, Dexter and Spartacus. Another one of my favorites I have not found online yet but would like to add is: Mad About You – featuring Paul Reiser and Helen Hunt. This show ran for seven seasons from 1992 to 1999.

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So long of the short of it…I have been a slug lately but I love my TV.

Hope everyone will send me good vibes (and a few hundred thousand dollars via Paypal but not GoFundMe) in the hope that I survive my Monday.

Peace.

Thursday, April 7th 2016 – No Umbrella Needed

did_you_ever_imagineDid you ever play the game: Did You Ever/Would You Ever? If not, did I just snag a soiled fish hook into a velvet panel of the universe and pull you into something you had no intention of participating in? Oh I think I surely did, like metal shavings to a magnet!
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OK that’s enough word play…but wait isn’t that the purpose of my blog? Should you be taking the over/under (for those with severe gambling tendencies) on this post if it will be 500 words: I would take the over. Being familiar with this guy’s work (me) I know he can tend to run off down a path like a golden retriever puppy chasing after a spooked bunny. Run bunny, run!
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Not much earth shattering to speak of today but in the course of my lifetime there has been literally nothing that was earth shattering as a whole (entire planet) but pretty much constantly somewhere in the world there is earth shattering going on due to shifting plates in the earth’s crust. See Mr Taylor from Earth Science class at Grandview High School out in Hillsboro, Missouri, I did retain a tiny miniscule factoid no matter what my C+ grade may have inferred.

This just in from the cat news desk: Lick, lick, lick. Stops and stares at the ceiling for four seconds…then suddenly bolts from the room for no reason.
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Please forgive me as my focus, as it sometimes is want to do, is unfocused. Should I write about the St Louis Cardinals and their three game losing streak at the hands of the Pittsburgh Pirates to start the season? Nah, not feeling it. How about the presidential race candidates and the general malaise surrounding them? Certainly not. How about the religious beliefs of the aforementioned political candidates? Oh that could be like a double-negative since you are never supposed to talk about politics or religion but again not that jazzed to delve into that hot mess. I guess I shall just kick back in my chair and hopefully not tip it over again and contemplate a topic; much like looking at those fuzzy pattern pictures that you have to make your eyes cross to see the hidden image of Jesus making the peace sign while wearing an AC/DC t-shirt. I only got that to work once and my brain went sideways so fast I wasn’t sure if I saw the picture correctly. Was it really Jesus or was it Butthead from Beavis and Butthead fame? I was filled with such uncertainty by the experience that I vowed never to try it again, that or a Ouija board. That stuff freaks me out.
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So until such time as I can come up with a sustainable topic to write about I will just sit here and tabulate all the plot holes with the Paranormal Activity movie series.
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Everyone have a really, really, really, really, really, really, really, really, really, really, really awesomely buoyant-ish day. I sincerely mean that.

Peace.

(So did I go over or under on the 500 words? Only counting up through the end which was the word Peace…)

meangirls

Professions

Greetings and good day to you and you and you – just in case you are sporting multiple dominant personalities.

Over the years I have met a lot of people and exchanged pleasantries. The most common I can recall are:

How old are you?
Have you lived here all your life?
Do you like baseball?
Do you tan at all?
How old are you again?
Did you come from a big family?
Do you like cats? Dogs?
Do you like motorcycles?
Who do you steal your Netflix from?
What do you do (for a living)?

For the purposes of this piece I will choose the last one to expound upon.

What do I do for a living? My current job title (which is always subject to change) with my employer is technically credit controller. The position is a glorified accounts receivable person which does business to business collections. For the lay person, I am by category a bill collector. Before you wrinkle your nose and click on the ‘X’ at the top of the page, I basically contact other businesses (not individuals) about past due invoices for services and digital products. It’s all very benign and yawn-a-rific.

In my current capacity I spend my days researching checks and remittance advices, generating and emailing invoices, taking down corporate credit card details, attending meetings and conference calls, running aging reports, recommending/referring unresponsive (and uncooperative) customers to the legal department, generating more reports, updating countless spreadsheets, escalating system issues (gotta love Oracle…NOT) and assisting a handful of support departments that are located overseas.

This is a typical day in the life of myself at the desk earning my paycheck. On any given day there are a couple of special projects thrown in at a moment’s notice for giggles that are of the utmost importance! (read stuff someone high up in the hierarchy requested that freaked everyone out but ultimately the output was probably never reviewed or really needed)

Why did I decide to loop you into this briefest of glimpses at my work day? Well because like some other people I know, I am not satisfied with my job and career path. I know what is coming next: So why not change it? I’m semi-glad you asked.

Well let me say this for starters, to anyone out there looking to change their career path or just get a different job: do it when you are younger, figure out something you kind of like or think suits you. Why you ask? Money. That factor is what keeps a lot of people in jobs they truly hate for the simple fact that there are bills to pay. The older you get and the more entrenched in your lifestyle you become, the more responsibilities dictate that you keep doing what you are doing even if that paycheck it putting a thousand paper-cuts on your soul to earn it. In most cases (but not all), when you are younger you have less responsibilities: generally no kids, no mortgage, no expensive car payment, etc. So entry level or mid-range jobs are more attainable and your low maintenance life style can take a mild hit to your earnings and not suffer. But in broad strokes (again not always the case) when you get older and ‘settle down’ into a mortgage, children, car payments, daycare, various forms of insurance, utilities, student loans, medical bills and a myriad of other adult expenses – you have a baseline of expenses that you need to meet with your existing income.

So you want to change jobs? OK chances are it will be to do something on the opposite end of the spectrum from what you have been earning your living doing for years. This means you have little to no experience in your new prospective field. If you have a degree it may or may not help depending on how your degree relates to your new direction. If, however, you do not have a degree and you are looking at changing job fields…bend over. More than likely you are going to have to take a pretty significant pay cut or you simply will not be ‘qualified’. In my opinion, this boils down why so many people are stuck in jobs they hate.

I see often times where someone will like their job and excel. What usually follows? Perhaps a promotion. Again that person excels doing a job that perhaps is less satisfying but the increased salary offsets the enjoyment loss in their work. Now that company restructures or again recognizes that person’s worth and their job role is added to or promoted. Now the person is making a decent salary but probably doing something completely different from what they started doing (enjoying). If that person wants to go back to doing what they were very proficient at and took satisfaction in…their wallet will suffer. Herein is the trap of Corporate America and being an adult in general.

So how do you over-come this scenario to do something you like and keep your income level steady? Ah well you can go back to school (read rack up more debt) to pave your road to what you think you want to do for the next 10 or 20 or 30 years. Just pray that what you think you really want to do this present day and get your degree for is what will be what you really want to do or guess what…you’re overboard trying to get into the boat again.

While I appreciate the people encouraging me to look for a different job so I can get out of bed during the work week without grumbling and growling at my toothbrush, the solution is not the easiest to lock down. Nevertheless, I will still keep looking. Perhaps I shall set up a GoFundMe account and title it: Give me your pity and your money! On a side-note, isn’t the GoFundMe concept/site just a newer version of Paypal? Hmmm?

The search for tomorrow continues. Be safe out there. Lots of people snapping and texting behind the wheel. Yes I’m calling you out Jeff Mullins! lol I know he does not read. He probably can read but I will make no assumptions.

Hope your day is almost your own.

Peace.