86 entries categorized "Amusing"

Definitely not pretty

“Mornings aren’t pretty”—truer words never spoken, though I didn’t sleep long enough to get a really grand case of bedhead. But I kinda feel like Mickey looks.

Definitely not pretty

And it can’t be purely coincidence that one French press = one giant coffee cup, right? No, it *must* be a greater statement of the proper order of the universe.


What kind of day has it been

An indicator of how this Monday will likely go:

I required five attempts to leave the house successfully. I believe this is a personal best.

First try: Realized I had forgotten my work badge (and, by extension, my transit card since they’re in the same badge holder).

Second try: Forgot Netflix DVDs for return mail.

Third try: Turned to lock door, determined this would be difficult since keys were still on the shelf inside my apartment.

Fourth try: Halfway down the stairs, remembered my wallet was still on my desk in the living room.

Fifth try: Half a block away, noticed my phone’s charge level was only 63%. Considered returning for the wall charger, remembered I have a USB charge cable on my desk at work.

So then. How’s your Monday?


You can HEAR the anguished wringing of hands

It’s snowing in the Seattle area, which means two things.

  1. Area school districts started announcing changes to their schedules, or outright closures, more than 24 hours ago, at the first hint of snow in the forecasts.
  2. Drivers are freaked the hell out.

The snow is sticking to lawns, roofs, and trees, but it’s barely making the roads wet yet. However, the forecast calls for up to 3 inches of accumulation from Seattle southward by this afternoon.

I am of course in heaven. I was born and raised (and more importantly learned to drive) in Salt Lake City, where men are men and holy underwear is the norm, and where they get REAL snow. Where by “real” I mean in quantities of inches at a time, sometimes a foot or more, and as the license plates will confirm it’s the greatest snow on Earth.

Which means that anytime the Seattle weather forecasts mention snow or La Niña or “Arctic flow” or the other winter-weather flag phrases, I get a little giddy. I remember the years of walking to school uphill in the snow (but one way only) and the inevitable late-night sledding sessions down the block-long alley across the street, including that time Matt almost got crushed by the bus on 6th Avenue but only his sled bit the dust because of his expertly timed ninja dodge maneuver, and the look of utter horror on the bus driver’s face when he felt the bus’s front right tire go over SOMETHING (and probably felt the crunching of the sled’s wood deck) and he had seen a teenager waving wildly on the sidewalk just before that.

Ahh, the memories.

Anyway, back to now. Yesterday we had several brief periods of “snow”—really, it was the hardened version of Seattle’s famous misty rain. You had squint to see it—it made NOTHING wet, not roads, not cars, certainly not exposed skin. Immortalized in a conversation with Julie Anne as we had a late pre-Thanksgiving-shopping breakfast at Original Pancake House in Crown Hill:

Don: Oh look, it’s snowing again.

Julie Anne [squinting]: It is?

Don: You have to really want to see it.

Julie Anne [pause, still squinting]: Oooohh.

Laffs all ’round!

It certainly doesn’t help that the media here in Seattle buy into the frenzy wholeheartedly. KOMO News radio usually switches to their astoundingly lame “driver to driver coverage”: Joe Sixpack calls in on their news line and reports what he may or may have seen, or sometimes what he expects to see, or what his wife’s coworker’s neighbor said she once saw. And somehow the metro area hangs on his every word. Usually delivered all in a rush, because Joe Sixpack is not a professional radio personality and so has no clue about modulation and pace:

KOMO personality: We have Joe from Medina on the KOMO News Line. Joe, tell us what you see.

Joe: Yeah so I was driving on 520 toward I-5 and as I got to Montlake I saw a snowflake and I slammed on the brakes and a semi and a bus behind me almost crashed as they tried to avoid me and I spilled my Starbucks all over the dashboard and now I have to go to the detailer.

KOMO: O...kay, thanks, Joe. Now to Melinda in Shoreline, you have have something to tell us about the power up there?

Melinda: Well our schools are all closed and our power is on, it hasn’t even flickered. But we have about an inch of snow and my driveway is really icy.

KOMO: ...

And so on. It just never ends. I know (or at least I think) they think they’re providing a necessary civic service, but come on.

Really they’re just enabling the cold-weather-pansy mentality.


Why I will never be on the PGA tour

Matt: youve been working a hell of a lot lately
Don: Yuh.. I don’t have a carpool anymore, so it’s an easy way to avoid traffic, and I also want to bank up hours so I can travel a lot over the next few months w/o using my paid time
Matt: ohhh ok
Matt: where you going?
Don: San Diego in April, Salt Lake in May, Molokai in July, road trip in August/September
Don: Possibly India in there somewhere too
Don: Though the India thing would be for work, so no time off required for it.
Matt: holy crappers
Don: mmhmm
Don: All but the India trip are definite
Don: If the India travel plans had worked out as originally hoped, I’d be there now in fact
Don: Would’ve left on/about the 6th of this month
Matt: wow, why Salt Lake?
Don: See friends who still live there, and participate in a charity golf tournament
Don: Which by itself is amusing because I play golf like drunk people fuck
Matt: ROFL
Don: Hell of a thing, my golf game. I have a strong drive, I can get 150-200 yards sometimes, but I can’t aim to save my life.
Don: It’s worth your scalp to be within 20 feet of me when I swing off the tee ;x
Matt: lol I’ll keep that in mind


BWAHAHAHAHA

WARNING: VULGARITY

Also: Big laffs!

But! VULGARITY.

A LOT OF IT

YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED.

(and it’s better if you’ve seen the episode titled “The Impertence of Communicationizing”)

(but it’s still damned funny!)


The year in IM status messages, 2009 edition

A quieter year compared to previous lists (see 2006, 2007, 2008). There would probably be far more than previous years if I included mobile chat status messages, but there’s no reliable way to record those for posterity, so I just ignore ’em.

The “available” messages first, in creation order:

  • 2009???
  • around
  • householdery
  • on-call duty kinda bloze
  • on call, may be away
  • minimally attentive
  • oops, I fell off
  • A general indicator of my state of mind as I left work this afternoon http://bit.ly/4pwgdg
  • oh the coughing
  • STUPID LUNGS
  • taxes done, earliest ever
  • actually watching the Oscars, someone please shake me into reality
  • President Obama’s address on C-SPAN
  • President Obama’s address on http://www.whitehouse.gov/live/
  • killing time before the damned conference call
  • just please kill me now
  • talking to a dozen Apus
  • is a cluster of Apus a “convenience”?
  • is a cluster of Apus a “convenience”? a “squishee”?
  • hello India!
  • India fell off
  • since I can’t log in to work... domesticity reigns
  • meh
  • can’t get away from the workin’, dammit
  • waiting for my potato
  • dinner time, of sorts
  • well past zonk time
  • organizing my media library
  • Sunday night.
  • goddamned phone!
  • went sailing today, much fun
  • happy movie night: Rachel Getting Married
  • Bottle Shock, about California vintners’ triumph over France
  • thinks we have Sync Success, knock on wood
  • waiting for my chicken to thaw
  • finally, dinner
  • slummin’
  • windy, bah
  • damnable winds!
  • doesn’t play one on TV
  • rain, again
  • damn, almost June already
  • {S out with it
  • media files go boom, argh
  • media files back, woo!
  • ahhh, temp down 10° in 19 minutes
  • Yakima, baby
  • WWDC keynotin’
  • probably should go to bed
  • tonight went by FAST
  • battery dying, poof soon
  • DVD: Smart People
  • ho hum.
  • BØRD
  • DVD rippin’
  • newly intolerant of shitfaced assholes
  • who says “barf” anymore?
  • working from home
  • pondering a grilled cheez.
  • that was a good grilled cheez.
  • 85.7° in the living room
  • 85.6°, woo!
  • {S 32dohs}
  • ::swelter::
  • travel prep
  • Hawai‘i, baby!
  • chillin’
  • Studyin’ (not me) and sippin’ (me) and cookin’ (also me)
  • Football!
  • DVD: The Wire: Season 1: Disc 1
  • hi.
  • back from the beach, goddammit
  • why so serious?
  • goddammit
  • yay HSI
  • ahhh rain
  • got subpoenaed today http://bit.ly/74fCpL

And now the “away” messages—looks like I wasn’t away very often:

  • snüz
  • out for a bit
  • inattentive
  • out.
  • errand(s)
  • cookin’
  • on the phone
  • out, try phone
  • stabbing in apt next door, yargh
  • cops are here
  • encoding DVDs
  • since I can’t log in to work... domesticity reigns
  • shower time
  • damned conference call
  • bath time!
  • time, methinks, for a cool shower
  • travel prep
  • dinner time
  • taxi service
  • media-library sorting, etc.
  • getting the laundry

Percussive fashion?

Walked into the restroom just now.

Greeted by loud metal-on-metal crashing sounds from one of the stalls. Sound stopped, I think when the person realized there was someone else in the restroom, then resumed a few seconds later, accompanied by grunts.

“Are... you all right in there?” I asked.

Crashing stopped. “Yeah,” he answered. “I’m having trouble with my belt.” And the crashing resumed, continued until I left the restroom a couple minutes later.

Hell of a belt, I guess.


SQUIRREL

“We had our camera set up on some rocks and were getting ready to take the picture when this curious little ground squirrel appeared, became intrigued with the sound of the focusing camera and popped right into our shot!” she wrote.

via www.cbc.ca

Such a great shot—squirrel looks totally at home there, POOF hey camera here I am! Click through for the story, the photo is priceless.

UPDATE: I stole the pic and put it after the jump, in case it disappears from the CBC.ca link.

Continue reading "SQUIRREL" »


Monday, by the numbers

Today was even more Monday than most of the Mondays I’ve experienced. In no particular order:

  • 9: Hours worked
  • 11: Times Outlook crashed
  • 23: Maximum number of IM windows open at one time
  • 519: Emails received, oh dear God
  • 2: iPhone users in my three-person carpool
  • 7: Sneezes in the shower

I thought of more items when I was riding home in the carpool, but of course now I can’t remember them. I need a notebook or something, but I can’t read my own handwriting, so that probably wouldn’t help me much.


Of late

Been a while since I had a non-photo, non-posted-by-mobile something-to-say prattling. Figured I’d catch things up a bit, in no particular order.

:: • :: • :: • ::

Had my eyes examined twice in four days. Bright lights shone INTO MY EYEBALLS at various times, some after I had been given eye drops that would prevent my eyes’ normal response to bright light to safeguard my vision. Institutional evile, it is.

Eye exams are such an odd thing. A bunch of tests designed to safeguard and even enhance our visual acuity, each test resulting in its own odd killing of vision for a short time.

Today’s tests involved digital photos of my retinas. The pics were cool, blood vessels in a circular cut-out on the computer screen, but the method kinda blew. The technician had me watch for the little red blinky light, just focus on the light, she had to make some adjustments and get things just so, don't worry about blinking, just blink like you normally would and keep focused on the red light, almost there, keep watching the light, another slight adjus—ZORCH the camera flash detonated INSIDE MY EYEBALL, practically. Pretty photos, but I saw the flash afterimage for almost an hour.

And within that hour I got to take an extended field-of-vision exam—I stared at a little yellow light and pressed a button each time I saw, somewhere in my field of view, a little secondary spot of light appear briefly. At one point I got a little button-happy and they had to repeat the test for my left eye because I spotted roughly 12,000 non-existent light blips, but I think it was just the machine getting annoyed with my predictive capabilities.

All of that took only 26 minutes. I think that’s like the old cigarette thing, the one where they say each ciggie cuts something like, what, 7 minutes or 23 hours or 800 years off your life? Yeah, that 26 minutes of eye exam from hell cost me 100 hours of sensitivity to light.

Sometimes at night, when I close my eyes really hard, I can still see the spots.

:: • :: • :: • ::

In other news:

We had a thunderstorm over Seattle tonight. I was on the phone with my friend David, because I LAFF AT DEATH and ignore the old saw that you should never use the phone in a thunderstorm, and also I only have a cell phone so if I managed to get zapped by the phone lines, it would definitely be newsworthy. But anyway, I was chatting with David and gazing out over the city, watching the storm move across town and thinking, definitely a good night for Safeco Field to have a retractable roof, eh wot?, and there was a lightning strike atop the Space Needle.

The Needle is maybe 6 blocks from my apartment, so it was roughly, well, NO TIME AT ALL before the thunderclap sounded. But it was quieter than I expected, and though my usual thunderstorm freak-out nerves were jangling, I was fascinated to see a building strike so closely and so uneventfully. Right at that moment David was talking about his recent visit to Cotton Eyed Joe (WARNING: Flash site, loud audio), how crazy it was and how much fun he had, and I was doing all in my power not to run into my bedroom and shimmy under the bed if for no other reason than I will NOT appear that unmanly in front of my cats, both of whom sat at the balcony door watching the storm and didn’t even twitch when the thunder rumbled over us.

:: • :: • :: • ::

Speaking of phones:

My Verizon Wireless contract ended Saturday.

First time in my personal-cell-phone-having life—thanks to the miracle of Palm devices, I can tell you that’s been since March 11, 2000—that I’ve hit the twin milestones of

  1. Finishing a two-year cell contract without making changes to my service, and
  2. Keeping a single phone alive through the entire contract period.

See, I’m usually hell on phones. I’ve damaged or outright killed a couple myself, drops and bangs and general use-and-abuse, and then there was the time my RAZR got smacked out of my hands and shattered into pieces on the tile floor of a downtown restaurant when I was only, what, a month shy of the end of the cell contract I was on at the time. So my keeping alive for (so far) 2.5 years a device that’s both a phone and a PDA is something of achievement in my little world.

Even more than that, I’m not running right out to replace the phone. I’m sticking with the current plan on month-to-month for now, because it suits me and I have a couple of ideas on phones I may want to try, but I’m holding off until I know more about them.

I really hope this isn’t some hideous sign of maturity. I’m only 37, I can’t be grown up yet.

:: • :: • :: • ::

So then, what else?

Oh, I started a 3-person carpool a few weeks ago. Doesn’t matter so much on the drive to work—we use the SR 520 floating bridge to get to Redmond, and there’s no HOV advantage eastbound.

Westbound, however, the HOV lane between I-405 and the floating bridge on SR 520 is a 3+ lane, and we sail past all those fools in their 1– and 2-person cars as they sit in traffic, mostly idling but occasionally moving forward by a car length or two, and I have to discourage my carpoolers from laughing maniacally and pointing and otherwise possibly causing road-rage incidents even though I secretly want to laugh and point as well.

But I was one of those non-HOV fools until earlier this month. Now I’m routinely home less than 40 minutes after I leave the office, and that includes dropping two people off when I’m driving.

Nice to be home by 5 each day, especially when there are still 3 or 4 hours of daylight to go.

:: • :: • :: • ::

Saw two movies in cinema the weekend before last: Star Trek, which I loved, and X-Men Origins: Wolverine, which I kinda liked.

I always want to type Wolvering. Have to correct it every time.

Anyway, two movies at the cinema in one weekend is a lot for me. Usually I’ll see two movies at the cinema in a span of several months, and I’ve realized why. It isn’t the opening-day (or even –weekend) crowds, or the occasionally shoddy projection or the sometimes uncomfy seats or whatever. It’s the people sitting immediately around me who act like they’re in their personal living-room THX auditoriums with the talking and the crinkling plastic and the God knows what other noises are emanating, to say nothing of the occasional dipshit who didn’t silence the cell phone.

I’d usually rather wait for Netflix to deliver the film experience in my own living room, where I know when I’m going to make crinkling noises and I can ignore myself easily.

But yeah. Loved loved Star Trek. I saw it courtesy my friend Matt, who turns 27 tomorrow. (Had to get that in there, of course.) He was dying to see the movie, already had tickets to an IMAX showing on the weekend, but he scored us seats at the 7pm showing on Thursday, May 7th, because he just couldn’t wait two more days for the IMAX showing on the 9th. Good loud visually exciting popcorn movie I’m sure I’ll see at least once more in the theaters and then at least once more on DVD, if I don’t end up owning it.

WolveringWolverine entertained me but didn’t wow me, or even strike me as a very compelling story. Hugh Jackman was good, he’s made the part his own, but I couldn’t buy Liev Schreiber as Sabretooth. Something just didn’t ring true, and in a summer blockbuster of mutants with retractable metal claws and sharp fangs and the like, if you can’t buy an actor in a part, something’s just not right there.

And if I never see Will Ferrell again, it’ll be too soon. They showed the fucking trailer for Land of the Lost FOUR TIMES in those two movies, and I’m sure all the remotely funny bits were in the trailer.

FOUR. TIMES.

:: • :: • :: • ::

OK, I’m done for tonight.

Have a good Wednesday, everyone.


Flying carpets


Flying carpets
Flickr: Don Nunn
Balcony door was open, warm in the apartment and I was cooking. I kept hearing these odd boom/crash sounds. I wasn’t sure if it was a car backfiring or, who knows, gunshots or whatever.

When I went outside, I caught the end of the carpet installers’ four-floors-up carpet-tossing act.

My Treo’s microphone does no justice to the loudness of the slamming sound these carpet remnants were making.

I love living in the city. :-)


Ahh, shared experience

Beldin: I had Golden Grahams for breakfast. There was a little zebra car toy thingie in the box, a tie-in to Madagascar 2—I opened the box (it was new) and the little toy popped right out, a bit of a surprise for so early of a morn.

Bug: Weird.. you mean they don't bury the toys at the bottom of the box any more? :x

Beldin: Nope. This one was in its own separate little wrapping on the outside of the cereal bag, just inside the box top.

Bug: How.. odd. Takes all the fun out of trying to DIG for the toy. ;x

Beldin: I know! I used to pour the whole damned box into a big mixing bowl to find the toy, and then ladle the cereal back in spoonful by spoonful after. ;D

Bug: ROFL, exactly. ;x

A general indicator of my state of mind as I left work this afternoon

I started the car, let it idle for 10 seconds or so, watched the dashboard indicator as I dropped the gear selector into “Drive” and saw nothing. Blank, no indicator at all, not the usual P R N D 2 1 legend—the little window was utterly bare.

I was a little wigged out.

Then I realized I was actually looking at the radio.


Overheard in New York | Not to Mention Spidey-Sense

This one hurts my brain.

Woman #1: So, how are you holding up?
Woman #2: You know, doing the best I can, using the five senses.
Woman #1: There’s six senses.
Woman #2: No there’s five: walking, talking, breathing, reading and writing.
Woman #1: What about seeing?
Woman #2: Well yeah, there’s also fire, wood, air, and water; but I don’t know why they don’t count those.

—B68 bus

Link: Overheard in New York | Not to Mention Spidey-Sense


“I hurt my ass” is a fun way to be greeted when you answer the phone

My cell phone (the only phone I have right now) rang just after 09:00 Friday. I glanced at the external screen and saw Katharine’s smiling countenance (picture caller ID rox!); I figured she had a morning update from her business trip to Irvine.

So I flipped open the phone and greeted her in my usual way of late: “’Sup, chica?”

Her reply: “I fell and hurt my ass!”

When the laughter died down, she told me the whole story, paraphrased:

Walking from hotel out to car with backpack over left shoulder, duffel bag over left arm, orange muffin in right hand. Shifting bag on left arm to right hand, missed a stair, went down, landed on ass. Smashed muffin by reflexive grip motion of right hand; bruised ass on stair.

She did the “Did anyone see this happen?” glance as she stood up, but happily no one did see it. So her ego at least was intact, if her breakfast and her ass didn’t fare so well.