Friday, December 18, 2009

Another Set of Reasons it Sucks Being Born on Christmas

Y'all remember when I wrote about it in 2004...

Here are some more thoughts to reflect on:

When you are in your mid 30's (like my age now and not a kid at heart) you have a hard time convincing small children that your birthday is on Christmas.

It's like, "Yeah, you know what Christmas Day is too, right?"

"Santa's Birthday?"

Blank stare...

"No... what?"

And then you tell them... and they are like, "Nah, ah... it's not your birthday, no one has a birthday on Christmas"

It's funny... and I guess if I was some sort of narcissist I would keep the argument going, but you let it go. They get presents and share a birthday cake.. :) But it is hard for your kids to understand the day from your perspective. I don't expect much anymore for my birthday other than to be around family, drink fine wine and just be.

My son is 3 and he is getting all wrapped up in the concept of Christmas Day and the Santa myth. I took him to see Santa last Saturday for the first time. He didn't quite get the fact that you had to ask an old man in a Santa suit for a "Batman Cave" in order to actually get it. And that you had to put a tree up for Santa to bring presents. And that you needed to put stockings up by the fireplace so Santa knew to come there and bring stuff down... And this all happens on one day and not any other time. He has been insisting tomorrow is Christmas for the past few weeks.

And then he has the revelation that it is your birthday and it is a total mind &$%# for him. No he says, Christmas is Christmas and your birthday is tomorrow... Everything is tomorrow I guess when you are three.

The other thing I notice this time of year is the reminder for like 4 months now that it is your birthday. In September, after Labor Day in between the Halloween decorations, Christmas seems to come a bit earlier each year, like on Sept 15 after the back to school sales are over. Let's not wait for summer to officially end Sept 21, let's throw the decorations up now before Oct 1. Earlier and earlier each year until they just start January 15th with 345 days till Christmas sales.

But for the Chrismas baby, it is another year older, for 4 months straight. Four months to relfect on the fact that I am going to be 36 this year. Too old to make the major leagues, almost old enough to make the Senior PGA tour. I have descended into my Fat Elvis Years. Thanks for the 4 month reminder each and every year.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Stop Sign Rules For Valley Springs, CA

In the tiny town of Valley Springs, CA, near where I live there is a 4-way stop sign on the corner of Hwy 26 and Hwy 12. This intersection has been here for years. There is an old rail station right on the corner that is now an ice cream store, a Chinese restaurant, a bar and wooden building I don't know what it's for.

The center of town is old. Most buildings date from the turn of the century in 1900 or slightly newer.

Nothing frustrates me more than the stop sign!

I got there this morning just after a guy on the right. Naturally... there first, you have the right of way. He goes first. If it was a tie, he still had the right of way. If it was close and I was there first... yield to the right of way. Always to the person on the right. Right?

Wrong! Not in this freaking town...

And I hate to be stealing a George Carlin bit but...dude, you are there first, you are on the right, you fucking GO!!!

Does that happen today?

Nope... I get there and I wait. One-one thousand, two one thousand, three--- WTF?

I look right and the guy is sitting there waving me.

So I wait! Four one thousand, Five one thousand...

OKAY... Enough is enough. I am still fucking waiting and now the guy's wife is in the act of fucking waving too.

So I what comes naturally now... I mouth the words, "Fuck you", point at my right hand and at him and mouth, "GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

And they sit waving.... I just went.

And this isn't the only incident. Apparently if you are making a left turn south bound onto 26, no matter what, you have the right of way (unless you are the aforementioned guy above).

So if you are heading east... get there first and the westbound guy turning southbound is there turning left. Fuck you... he has the right away.

This intersection drives me so nuts that I have to write about it. I drive through it everyday to Starbucks and nearly every time I get into an "issue" with someone that doesn't yield right of way or is way to freaking polite to take their turn.

So for those that live in and around Valley Springs, I give you the rules:

Four-Way Stops (Simplified)

Copyright 1996, Jim Loy

The four-way stop is a drivers' IQ test, that many drivers fail. It would seem to be a maneuver of approximately Blue-Angel caliber. But, it is really very simple, if you follow these few rules.

Case I - one car

You are the only one at the intersection. This is the simplest case. First you stop [complete stop (in or out of the cross-walk), rolling stop, 25 mph stop, etc.], then you have only five options:

1. Go.
2. Hesitate, then go.
3. Wait for 3 more cars to come along.
4. Wait for 2 more cars.
5. Wait for 1 more car.

A true Driver (with a capital "D", master of four-way stops) would choose option #3. After all, they do call this a four-way stop. Most drivers modify option #3 by adding a time limit, like 30 seconds: "Wait for 3 cars or 30 seconds, whichever comes first." This 30-second wait has degenerated into option #2, "Hesitate, then go."

Case II - 2 cars

There are a few permutations here:

1. You got there first. See below, "Complication #3, who got there first?" In this situation, just go, unless you are a disgustingly polite driver (Complication #1).

2. He or she is on your right and you're turning right. Go.

3. He or she is on your right and you're not turning right. Wait.

4. He or she is straight ahead; and he or she is going straight or turning right; and you're going straight or turning right. Go.

5. He or she is straight ahead and he or she is turning left or you're turning left. Wait.

6. He or she is on your left and he or she is turning right. Go.

7. He or she is on your left and he or she is not turning right. Wait.

Case III - 3 cars

If it's your turn, go. If not, try to imagine what can go wrong if you do go, and then go if you didn't just imagine your own death. Actually, this case is a simplification of case IV - 4 cars.

Case IV - 4 cars

There are hundreds of permutations here. But, actually, it's pretty simple. Go it it's your turn, or if you're turning right and nobody else is headed for that lane.

Complication #1 - the disgustingly polite driver

A disgustingly polite driver will wait for you even though you both know that it is his or her turn to go. I can imagine him or her stopping for a child, and waving the child into the path of a speeding semi. Such politeness confuses any driving situation. It can hopelessly muddle a four-way stop situation, unless you follow this advice: Flip him or her the appropriate salute, and go.

Complication #2 - which way will they turn?

Cases II through IV depend upon which way the other drivers are turning. Their turn signals may offer a clue:

1. Some people do not signaling
2. Some people will turn the same way that they are signaling
3. Some people will not turn the same way that they are signaling

There are six principles which will help you sort these out:

1. You can legally assume that people will turn the same way that they are signaling, or that they are not turning when they are not signaling.

2. You can legally ram them if they are lying.

3. No witness will stick around to back up your story about whether or not anybody signaled.

4. Drivers (capital "D") do not signal.

5. drivers (small "d") do not signal.

6. All other drivers signal.

Complication #3 - who got there first?

"Who" got there first, "what" got there second, "I don't know" got there third. Sorry, that was merely an allusion. In theory, a four-way stop is simple. The cars stopped in a certain order, and they go in the same order. In reality:

1. Some people don't exactly stop. So, when did they arrive at the four-way stop?

2. Some people stop one or two car-lengths behind the stop sign. When did they arrive at the four-way stop?

3. Sometimes two cars really do stop simultaneously.

4. Driver A thinks that driver B got there first, and driver B thinks that driver A got there first. This is a simplification of the next situation.

5. Driver A thinks that driver B got there first. Driver B thinks that driver C got there first. And driver C thinks that driver A got there first. From experience, I would say that this, along with various 4-car permutations, is a very common situation.

6. At least one driver has no clue. This has probably happened before he reached the four-way stop.

So, when there's doubt about who got there first, who should go first? Here's a handy rule: "I go first, you go second, everyone else hesitates." My car is the one with the dents in each door.

Complication #4 - pedestrians

Any of the above situations can be further complicated by the intrusion of any number of pedestrians. You won't see them lining up and going one at a time. They just keep walking right on through the intersection, dodging cars. While pedestrians slow down the normal clockwork of the four-way stop, they also introduce a logical puzzle to the situation. If you are about to go, and a pedestrian walks in front of you, how does that affect the order of who goes when? Do you get to go first once the pedestrian is out of your way? Should all the other cars wait for you? Or, have you lost your place and must wait for 3 more cars to go. This guideline should help: "If you have to wait for a pedestrian, you are now a time-bomb waiting to go off. To minimize the loss of life, you should be allowed to go first."

Complication #5 - the four-way stop starburst maneuver

This is when all four cars go at once. All four cars stop, nearly touching, nose to fender. And, nobody can go forward. The driver who backs up loses all respect from his or her family. Besides, the next four cars have gone forward by now. So no one can back up, if he or she wanted to. The four-way stop has now achieved critical mass. The only solution is for one car to be removed, sideways, by a fork-lift. I'm sorry to say that I've never seen this done. I understand this is very popular in Europe, at all kinds of intersections.

four-way stop theory

Einstein's theory of Special Relativity says, among other things, that two observers, travelling at different speeds, cannot agree on when something happened. In fact observer A may say that event X occurred before event Y, while observer B may say that event Y happened first. And both observers are right. This leads to the "four-way stop paradox."

A theory that seems to have even more to say about four-way stops is Natural Selection.

Addendum #1:

I have finally figured out what is wrong with the four-way stop concept. It is not that the four-way stop is a drivers' IQ test that is too difficult for all of those drivers who have not yet mastered the green light concept. Instead, it is that the four-way stop is an IQ test that these drivers are encouraged to flunk over and over again, forever.

I recently was stopped behind a person who stopped at the four-way stop, let six cars go ahead of her, and then went. Also recently, I was the third car to a four-way stop, and the first car wouldn't go (waiting for a fourth?); we out-waited him, and he eventually went.

Addendum #2:

I received email saying that not all states have four-way stops. That sounded like heaven, until I read further about the four-way yield! I hope they give out drivers' manuals at the border.

I recently almost saw a three way accident at a four-way stop. A car was the first of three cars at the intersection. The driver hesitated, and then went. And all three cars nearly collided. The hesitation sent the wrong signal; it said "go ahead" to the other drivers. A more forceful approach would probably have been less dangerous. Clearly any driver who goes (whether he/she actually has the right of way or not) must be prepared to stop. But so many drivers seem to be trying to divine the other drivers' thoughts, when they should just go in the order in which they arrived.

I should also write about "Uncontrolled Intersections (Simplified)." These are intersections with no stop or yield signs. There are several amusing ramifications (ways in which cars can ram into each other), such as "I got there first," or "I'm on your right, buddy," or "I'm in the through street," or "I'm King of the Road," or "Honking is better than brakes."

Addendum #3:

I recently saw a new trick at a four-way stop. A driver held up his hand (in traffic cop fashion) to encourage me to stop. I was going about 2 mph, and was coming to a stop, which should have been obvious to him. So his gesture seemed stupid to me. But that might actually work.

I also saw a U-turn in a four-way stop intersection (read that again), with two cars waiting. Stupidity = Creativity!

It seems that many drivers are trying to make eye contact with each of the other drivers. This is a sort of validation: "Yes, we all acknowledge that you exist, and therefore you can go now." That is why I wear dark glasses.

Addendum #4:

I recently encountered the ultimate complication (twice in one week): four way stops + cell phones. This may be the new rule: If the driver who gets there before you has a phone to his ear, go (or don't). Hey, a bad day driving is better than TV.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

On The Move...

I am moving again to a more permanent home.

Actually... I bought a home, technically, a second home.

(But how Steve you have no money?)

Exactly... how?

The importance of good credit pays off again. I am not sitting here being a victim of my own circumstance. I am not asking for a government handout. I am not asking for shit. I didn't borrow (okay I did for a week...thanks Terri and I paid back). I didn't do anything but look for an opportunity.

Need a house, have good credit and no money in the right time to buy one when prices are low? Ask a realtor! A good one.

Good Realtors know shit. They know where the opportunities are and can find you creative deals. And when I say creative, I do not mean mortgages. I mean owners that will lease option. OR in my case... Finance it for you instead of using the bank! There are Baby Boomers out there with second homes or have homes that are paid for with no retirement left because Bush Obama fucked up the financial system and they have no money. Some of these older Americans want cash flow. They want the payment from a reliable source. They want to be paid.

I found that opportunity in three months of looking and went for it. I own the house. I am not renting it. I pay interest and I get to write that shit off.

I am the king of all I see. We move next week.

Monday, November 16, 2009


So... I am into creativity and writing these past few days... It's a vent I guess when I spend 72 hours with a 3 year old. God I love him and his temper.

Today, I did not need to be creative. It happened write in front of me.

I flew into New Mexico this evening. I got into my hotel. My room... Fired up the TV. Checked email.

Then I heard some commotion. Some foreign language and...

You know those doors between hotel rooms? The ones on the inside so if you had your kids with you, you could put them in there to make one big room for whatever reason you would want to: In Albuquerque, next to the freeway...

So the commotion, the foreign language and it was not Spanish and not Asian so automatically it was Arabic or Farsi, right...

Any how... these dudes undid their locks on their side and started to fuck with my door.

I am all, "Hello?" "Hello?"

Nothing... they really sound like they can get in and shit so I finally went to my door and pounded it yelling, "Dude WHAT THE FUCK??"

What's funny in hindsight, the screwing with my lock did not immediately just stop, it sort of subsided, gradually.

I heard some foreign speak. Then a whole lot of disagreements. Then a few "Fucks" and then they left and haven't been back.

So hear is what I think:

The were looking to scam for a second room and figured they would see if they could get another door open. They did all they could but ran into Steve on the otherside yelling, "What the Fuck??"


Thursday, November 12, 2009

Spacing Out

Where am I at these days? I guess I can post on Facebook since most people read what I have to say over there any way...

So what is going on?

  1. Still in pain... Never seems to end... been what 5 years now?
  2. Seemingly endless road show I am doing. Couple more states and one new city I have never been too next week.
  3. This country is fuct if we keep on the path we are on. 10.2% unemployment AND we are going to tax everyone for health care. Hummmmm something doesn't seem right about that... spend what we don't have for everyone when we only need to pay for those that don't have health insurance, as if that is what we really want to do. Catholics do soap kitchens and make food for the homeless. LDS's do missions.... The Salvation Army gives shit away... Soooooooooo why not pay for health care for those that don't have it instead of blowing up the system and fucking this country up even more. 10.2% is actually more like 17.5% when you consider those, off of unemployment benefits and those underemployed. Think about it? It's not hard... Nancy Pelosi SUCKS!!!!
  4. My daughter is beautiful... It's kind of weird. You hang around Elijah the past 3 plus years and you learn to love him very much, even more than life itself. You have this cool little being that loves you back, looks up to you, plays with you, laughs with you and is totally the coolest thing ever to happen to you: Then equally at an instant, ya get another one, just like him and you feel instantly the same way about her and you wonder what you did without her before she was around... Just like Elijah. Parenting rules.
  5. There are those that come visit this blog from time to time who wish they would have forgotten I had ever existed. And it sucks because I do not feel the same way about them at all.
  6. There isn't one...
  7. Looks like I am going to need a new lawn mower.
Crazy times... for crazy people... HA HA HAHA!!! Wooooooooooooooooo

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Nothing to see here

We had the baby...

Scarlett Julia. On the 7th...

Thursday, September 17, 2009


I think we warp our kids today.

A few weeks ago I was at my nephews baseball game. He was pitching. And well... when his team was at bat, they were rocking the other team. However, when they got to 6 runs, they stopped batting and switched sides. Apparently it is some mercy rule so everyone gets a chance.


When I was 12, my baseball team scored 30 runs by the 4th inning and we proceeded to turn soft and finished winning 35 to nothing in 7 innings, which is all they would let us play back then anyway. 7 full innings, winner take all.

And the funny thing, we laughed, we joked... we rocked that other team and we all said at the end when we shook hands, "Good game!" Both teams... Good game... even though we slaughtered the shit out of the other team. We went on to be league champions that year and the other team, well... ha, they won a couple games but finished last. Every two years you went to a new team anyway and I was on the losing team when I was 13. So what...

I think about the difference of the winner take all attitude and this feeble mercy bullshit and think it is such a joke.

I had the good fortune of sitting next to a 2 year old on the plane last night. He was watching Cars and kept having his mom fast forward to the races to see Lightning McQueen win. Here, in the first 5 minutes of the movie, Pixar creates a likeable but seriously arrogant, narcissist who is hell bent on winning. And kids cheer the whole time!

Then he loses!

Then there is this whole side story of character development until finally he gets to the big race and WINS!! Disney magic.

Shit... What about the other cars? What about their feelings? Are they evil? Are they to be discarded because they are other colors and just not as good as Lightning McQueen's red paint? Pixar creates a winner, a winning attitude and a winning movie about winning when the times get tough and how while we are all supposed to be nice in shame, but overcome our losses to be the big winner.

Totally contradicts youth sports today and their stupid rules.

Win dammit!!!

Monday, September 14, 2009

The Babe Ruth Post...

I have this often reoccurring dream that hit me again last night. It comes in various forms and sometimes it is quite terrifying.

I am in college. I know this because the dream has the setting of my college in various forms... in the Music School... the Business School or some nasty ass dorm food dispenser.

Anyhow... I have this dream where I have this really really tough schedule. I am taking the max units and I have trouble running back and forth from the classes. One of which is this math class, which quite frankly I never had to take in college because I took Calculus in high school and I took some math class to get out of it. Or it was masked somewhere with one of my music theory classes or that worthless inferential statistics class. I don't know... Whatever.

Well I have this math class in my schedule in the dream. And anything could be happening in this dream and suddenly I have to go to math. In this math class, it is all way fucking hard math that I just do not want to donate my time too. And not only in these dreams, do I "blow off" the rest of math because it is so damn hard... I freaking forget to go and I have this big fat "F" on my report card because I forget to drop the class.

I noticed that today, in the real world, I woke up stressed to the fucking max today. And I had the dream last night. Am I forgetting to "drop something" before I fail?

I have to be in the SLC and So Cal this week... With a rapidly approaching baby.

714... and counting...

Friday, August 21, 2009

Head Shot!

My parents left me home at 7 with my brother, 12 alone. We watched this movie.

I thought of this tonight as I was turning on a movie for the kids. It involves cartoon ants and bugs and has probably nothing that would warp a kid's mind.

I turned out okay... we hope. :)

Wednesday, August 12, 2009


Friday, August 07, 2009

Look Who is 3

On Monday...

I bought the little dude his first guitar and damn if it is not significant. But I think he appreciates it and it gives he and I some commonality at night when we are being quiet and having some music time. Mostly, lately, I play him music with good melodies or over the top singers and he gets totally hooked into it.

Little guy is a bit zonked after yesterday. I took him to Santa Cruz so he can enjoy all the rides and beach fun in the sun. We went on everything we could since there are height restrictions. He would not be scared to go on anything if we could get him on it.

I loved the day with him. Spending a lazy day with him today and some lazy time tomorrow, then a small birthday party to signify his third.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Elijah and I on the beach...

Something very peaceful for me on this beach and being able to enjoy it with Elijah was cool. And the sweatshirt makes it looking like I am going to be a starting Linebacker in the NFL.


Sunday, July 19, 2009

Steve Goes "Liberal"


Yeah... I traded a nice vehicle that went super fast and got 18 mpg for the new Jetta TDI that gets 45 mpg.

To all my little liberal friends and their demands for Priuses and Obamanomics:

What now bitches?


And I didn't have to sacrifice what I like in a car:

Low End Torque (236lb per foot)

Sport Braking and Sport Wheels

Leather interior

German coolness and looks

I have already been stopped by two people and I just drove the thing home.

I'll post pics when I feel like it.

Wednesday, July 08, 2009


I found $6 in my shorts today. $6. Awesome.

Back in Sactown today, Bay Area tomorrow.

So why does today feel like Tuesday and not Wednesday?

So flying this week, two things happened. First on the way up to Portland, I flew Southwest and I was in the A group. And I had a low number so I sat first. I got in the second row so it was totally cool and I knew I would get my coffee first.

Well as everyone was boarding the captain got on and said that it was about half full so aisle and windows for almost everyone so that was totally cool which means we weren't three to a row like the old days riding the bus to Calaveras High School. (God that sucked)

So this lady gets on and says, "Can I sit next to you?"

She was an older, granola looking lady who obviously was heading for a hike along the Columbia. I let her in since the window was open and she seemed harmless. So I go back to sit down and...


She was sitting in the middle... So... of course, being the prick that I am I was like move over bitch!

Not really, but I did inform her in a totally terse way that the window was open and she should enjoy the view of the Cascades on the way to Oregon.

And she says NO!

Okay, the WTF came entered my mind and I turned around looking for another aisle.... Then she realized no one else was boarding and then she moved over.

So today... I sat on a plane and watched a lady have air sickness. It was sweet.

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Oregon...'s pretty... green. I felt like hugging a tree. Amazed by the overgrowth and fresh air. It makes California suck.

Q: What is the difference between Ed McMahon and Michael Jackson?

A: Ed said, "Heeeeeere's Johnny!" and Michael said, "Where's Johnny?"

Monday, July 06, 2009

Oooooh! The U.N. Condemned it so it's Bad!!!



HA HA, you very funny Steve! You make good funnies about Michael Jackson

Watching the UN act is a demoralizing lesson in futility. How about, unleashing a wrath that hath no predecessor and serious do something instead of having your thumbs up your ass while the world burns.

Just freaking do it. Let South Korea overrun the North. All those malnourished, little people who stand for "Dear Leader" will drop their weapons and run for the nearest Sanyo cellphone store and call home to mom like the little feeble bitches they are, launching bottle rockets into the sea, celebrating the fourth of July. Our holiday!

Fuck North Korea.

Q: Why did Michael Jackson die on the same day as Farrah Fawcett?
A: He didn’t want her to be the only white woman grabbing all the headlines.

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Friday, Friday, Friday....

Well... tomorrow that is. I am out for a long weekend to do nothing but tinker with my Porsche or something. The rear sway bar is loose so I might drive up to a friend's shop and climb under to fix it tomorrow. That way I can take some corners tighter. It is a hard part of the car to reach even parking on the edge of the curb. I should take pictures. I need new shocks back there as well. We'll see.

I just won't let up:

What do a shopping bag and Michael Jackson have in common? One is plastic, white and you should let small kids play with it, the other you take home groceries in.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Hey I just noticed...

...I get a three day weekend!

Michael Jackson doesn't.

Monday, June 29, 2009

This is purely AWESOME!!

One website dedicated to truck crashes at one railroad trestle crossing! Beyond awesome!

Michael Jackson joke of the day: What's the difference between Farrah Fawcett and Michael Jackson? Farrah did Majors and Jackson did minors...(wait for it...let it come you if you don't get it... not yet? click here)

Saturday, June 27, 2009

All the People Just Died

Wow... Ed McMahon, Farrah Fawcett and Michael Jackson in one week.

I guess Farrah's dying wish was that all the children of the world would be safe...

...and minutes later, Michael Jackson dies. Still too soon Lawryde?

WOW! Bring it on is back up if you want to bring it, um... on. Been up for 4 years now. It is kind of funny to watch people go at each other for no reason.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Friday Thoughts; AKA my 700th post

Wow! It has been a killer week.

First Ed McMahon, then Farrah Fawcett and now Michael Jackson.

What are the chances? Who is next?

Will they break Michael's body down into Legos with all the plastic that was in it so that little kids can play with him for a change? (Lawryde, it is never too soon)

We are heating up this weekend and I am expecting that we will be up to 105 tomorrow afternoon which is entirely awesome.

I got over what ever it is that I had earlier this week so I bet it was not the pig flu.

I can't stand this band but this song is really really really good:

Lyrics below...

My best friend gave me the best advice
He said each day's a gift and not a given right
Leave no stone unturned, leave your fears behind
And try to take the path less traveled by
That first step you take is the longest stride

If today was your last day and tomorrow was too late
Could you say goodbye to yesterday?
Would you live each moment like your last
Leave old pictures in the past?
Donate every dime you had, if today was your last day?
What if, what if, if today was your last day?

Against the grain should be a way of life
What's worth the price is always worth the fight
Every second counts 'cause there's no second try
So live like you're never living twice
Don't take the free ride in your own life

If today was your last day and tomorrow was too late
Could you say goodbye to yesterday?
Would you live each moment like your last?
Leave old pictures in the past?
Donate every dime you had?

And would you call those friends you never see?
Reminisce old memories?
Would you forgive your enemies?
And would you find that one you're dreaming of?
Swear up and down to God above
That you'd finally fall in love if today was your last day?

If today was your last day
Would you make your mark by mending a broken heart?
You know it's never too late to shoot for the stars
Regardless of who you are

So do whatever it takes
'Cause you can't rewind a moment in this life
Let nothing stand in your way
'Cause the hands of time are never on your side

If today was your last day and tomorrow was too late
Could you say goodbye to yesterday?
Would you live each moment like your last?
Leave old pictures in the past?
Donate every dime you had?

And would you call those friends you never see?
Reminisce old memories?
Would you forgive your enemies?
And would you find that one you're dreaming of
Swear up and down to God above
That you'd finally fall in love if today was your last day?

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

I have the Mexican Pig Plague

I think I have the H1N1 virus otherwise known as swine flu.

I seriously feel like shit.


I have had a raging headache, I feel clammy and I also feel like shit.

I also am losing track of my thoughts.

I am dying for some better drugs. Sudafed and/or Dayquil are just not cutting it.

I am in LAX waiting for a plane. I should just start telling people I have it before they get it on the plane.

Blurry vision... I think I have a fever because it is cool down here but I am all hot. Maybe it is my clothes.

I wish they'd board some planes so they can get some people out of here.

Praise Jesus, Holy Cow...

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

It Must Be A Rant Week

So I got up at 4:15 AM. Crawled out of bed to let the cat that was tearing up my screen. I am so not getting my deposit back!

I got up early to fly to Los Angeles for a meeting. It was smooth getting out of the house... I can totally do it in the dark now, though the sun cracked just before 5 when I left.

Smooth trip the airport...

Smooth trip to the parking lot...

Smooth trip through security and in line for Starbucks!!

Totally cool, I had 45 minutes until my flight so I just kicked it and checked email and stuff on the phone.

So... it was time to board. The airline I chose, Southwest lines up passengers by numbers and herds them onto the plane. I am good at flying this airline. 24 hours before my flight I check in. (which I totally just fucking forgot for tomorrow!... shit and I still get the A group!! Whoo Hoo!!!)

But anyway... I get on the plane, with my bags, my latte and I sit in peace. No problem.

I am also an expert at not letting people sit next to me. I fold up the arm rest, rest my Latte on the tray in the middle seat, and I stare at the floor reading a magazine, and I spread way out like I am 6 foot 6 instead of 5 10.

So the plane is almost full... and this lady gets on just sobbing her eyes out.

And I carefully, watch because I do not want this next to me today. She is sobbing...


Sobbing wandering looking for a seat... all middle seats. And I am like in the front of the plane too.

So I see this little kid board so I quickly make room by standing up and saying, "Sit here!"

I chose a single serving friend.

But the lady kept sobbing and I felt bad... She just wandered up and down.

Minutes go by and the flight attendants help her.

Long story short, this lady had a friend/relative/1st Cousin or something die or was sick or whatever...

And I just sat there listening and looking down. And she was sobbing and couldn't catch her breath.

I guess she was upset because there were no aisle seats left. I just kept looking down because I really did not want to care.

The attendants declared an emergency and asked that "one of us" up front give up our aisle for the lady's emergency.

"Huh?!?!" I looked up... And the attendant is not looking directly at me but in the vicinity and she had an authority to her tone like, "One of you better fucking move now!"

I just stared the attendant down with "fuck you" I think written all over my face.

I got on the plane early.

I got my ticket early...

I got to the airport on time... had a Latte and bags stored over my head.

Fuck that... I am not moving. No way! No way! I do not care what this lady's problem or drama is... She got on late! She is not entitled to my seat because I followed Southwest's seating policy. I just don't care and my Latte was not empty yet. Don't look at me for help!

The nice gentlemen in front of me got up and moved...

so that was that...

Monday, June 22, 2009

Fuck Pixar

Here goes...

Fuck Pixar... Seriously! Read this story...

This story is nothing but corporate greed and exploitation. To summarize if you didn't see the link...

This girl is almost dead from some vicious disease. Her dying wish is to see Pixar's Up movie ( I saw it, it's pretty good) and she is so near death she cannot make it to the theater. So to make a long story short, Pixar makes a DVD and has an employee show the video for the family and then takes the DVD and leaves. The girl gets her dying wish and yada yada yada, she dies that night having fulfilled her dream.

Sad story. I feel for the family and their tragic loss. I do. I would devastated if I lost a child.

But fuck Pixar and its cohort, the media...

Why the hell do they need to do a story like this? It's not like some spur of the moment activity where a celebrity helps an old lady across the street out of the kindness of his heart. It wasn't an unplanned sacrifice! Or some random act of kindness: "Benicio Del Toro rescues 5 year old from burning building"

It was fucking staged...

Here is how this goes down.. Kid is sick and can't leave her bed. Family starts to worry that this is the end and they really want to help her see Up

Family calls Pixar.

Pixar's receptionist laughs and says no.

Family friend calls because they know someone on the inside and pleads case...

The friend in Pixar sees what they can do because, well shit, Up is copyrighted and we have this whole chain of command to get this movie to the theaters who have the viewing rights etc. (It'll fuck with the profit model spending .29 cents to burn this on a DVD and take it to the girl)

What you don't see is the haggling and the favors behind the scenes and then one important guy, smelling a buck, goes hey... wait, show the movie to the girl at her house! Bring it to her death bed! Imagine the publicity and the money we'll make. Fuck Dreamworks, Pixar owns this $ummer!!!

So they get some low level employee with a bunch of lead based painted, plastic samples of the soon to be released UP kid toys, some balloons, microwave popcorn and they have this really low key family party to show the movie to the poor kid. Big fucking ordeal behind the scenes, but really low key on the street.

Media is alerted...

The best news Pixar gets: The girl dies that NIGHT!!! OH FUCK YEAH!! $$$$$$$$

I can haz millionz?

Pixar gets the story out... all the office moms get to work today and the story is sent throughout corporate America's email systems: "Did you see this story>" "OMG I cried when I saw it!" "RE: RE: RE: RE: RE: YOU MUST READ THIS" and all the guilt ridden parents out there who haven't taken their kids to see UP will be there this weekend because, WHAT IF IT WERE THEIR KID? What if it were their kid that died? Gotta show the movie to the kids because what if it were their kid. The guilt... Not seeing Up. And they'll cry even more after the first 5 minutes in the theater knowing their hearts, it was all they could do, for their kids this weekend and in honor, of the 10 year old girl that died after the great Pixar is the kindest and most generous company, and most importantly, has the gall to take a dvd down to the kid's house to show her the movie, her dying wish... Up will take her to heaven!!!

Fuck Pixar...

Friday, June 19, 2009

Too Funny...

Second most funny version next to the Dan Band in Old School

Friday, June 12, 2009

Oh Look... Steve Posts...

Sorry... I have been an extrovert posting on other sites.

New exciting news for me.

We are... (Censored)

And then, it is expected that I (censored) the (censored again) for (really censored)

And then finally,

I hope Iran implodes. Seriously. I hope the new guy gets elected for his fine work during the war in the 80's (the side we should have been supporting) and it is better than that jerk off Ahminejihad (spelled wrong on purpose). I think a civil war over there is just what we need so we can carpet bomb North Korea.

I am such a Republican but after what 4 and a half years writing thing and only being known for installing an IKEA faucet correctly, I guess that is all you get to read.

I am so cynical.

Lawryde if you are still reading, you gotta see Gran Torino since it is out on video if you haven't. Right up your alley even though he is quite opposite.

Gotta update my facebook URL

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Hummer: Now Made in China

Apparently Hummer is being sold to a Chinese company named Sichuan Tengzhong Heavy Industrial Machinery Company Ltd.

While I sadly, miss my old Hummer that I had before the Cayenne (that thing would drive over anything and everything) I am suspect of the brand lasting in America.

Unless they take my new marketing idea!


Saturday, May 23, 2009

KWOD 106.5 RIP

I got off the plane last night er.... this morning, and proceeded to drive home. Late at night I like to blast the radio from station to station. I have all the good stations programmed in a row on my radio (which I thought about 4) that were still cool enough to listen too.

So commercials on one, crappy song on another, I decided to flip to the Alternative, KWOD 106.5, my mainstay for nearly 20 years for cool new rock music.

WTF? Aerosmith? Janie's got a Gun?

Someone playing a joke?

No joke, apparently after umpteen years of playing the latest and greatest in rock music, KWOD 106.5 is now the BUZZ... Music from your prom, high school and bachelor (ette) party from the 90's.

The Buzz, 106.5... oh puke!!

Seriously went from Smells Like Teen Spirit... which is cool to Shania Twain's, "I feel like woman"

Give me a fucking break, WTF happened?

A simple "Thank You", How about Fuck you!!!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Bitter Tears

Along with pain, I get mood swings. It is a big cycle and it occurs when I least expect it.

So the past 24 hours I have been down. I feel like I am suffocating and can't breathe. I do not want to do shit for work or anything else. Maybe it is the pain syndrome I deal with or maybe I am genetically predispositioned for a bit of depression from time to time. Not everyone can carry the weight of the world.

I hate this. Funny thing is I can stand back and look at this saying, "It is just a cycle, you will come out of it." It's stupid to look at one's mental health this way. I look for alternative things to do. I actually think about leaving home to other places so I can just change the scenery to get stuff done. Right now, I am thinking of heading to Starbucks to get some projects done for work. I bet if I got out of here I can get more productive.

I look down at the floor and see Elijah's jeep. He is back home for the next week. I guess that is mostly why I am so down. I see his toys and they just sit without moving.

It kinda sucks.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Steve Blogs

Nothing has made me happy this week.

I tore cartilage in my knee... let me re-phrase that, re-tore cartilage in my knee during a back pack hike in Yosemite. Apparently in the x-ray I f-ed up my knee along time ago, back when I was 14 and skateboarding through Daly City on my Santa Cruz Skateboard and orange bullet wheels. One too many ramp jumps and pivoting wall rides I guess.

When I was 14 my knee was swollen three times its size. My mom basically after school one day, after seeing her orthopedic doctor said, I got you an appointment. The next thing I knew after school I was getting my knee drained. It was pretty screwed I guess. And then we moved away a week later and I hung up my skateboard.

I guess the stress up and down the granite steps up to Nevada Falls just took its toll. I could barely walk after the hike. I spent $153 in the emergency room in Yosemite to get a good bottle of Ibuprofen and that was it. Sunday I was sore but managed. That night I fell to the ground in agony three times. I had to go back to the doctor the very next morning.

So Sunday night I canceled a meeting and decided to get it checked. Of course, I guess it was more important for other people that were not going to that meeting that I didn't send a sub in my place. I guess 8-9 hours notice on a Sunday night is reasonable to suggest a replacement right? Or drive down loaded on Vicodin because I could have done that too. No... I went to the doctor.

And found I tore cartilage and had to take a cortisone shot so I could be upright all week. I deal with enough pain in my arms, neck and back... the last thing I needed was a bum knee. I took the shot and then guess what? No get well... it was why didn't you plan for your meeting you missed better? You should have at least tried. Yeah... I tried to go and at the last minute I said no.

Then my computer breaks today and all my email and files and things I need to do are all trapped on it and here I sit stressing out over it. Can't get a new one until Monday and I have a big trip.

Life just sucks right now...

Thursday, April 16, 2009


Did I ever tell you I am obsessed with cleaning my ears?

Monday, April 06, 2009

How to play Black Jack


Totally took over the black jack tables I visited this weekend and took money. I make a few hundred to a $1000 on a good trip. I bet I could make more if I started with a higher number. I am not a big money player. I tend to stay on $5 to $10 tables mostly because it is where I can make the smallest investment.

I have a system to playing black jack that works 75% of the time and I always walk with the money. I estimate I have earned 12-15 grand now playing Black Jack since 2005. I am up $700 this year so far.

No idea why I try to play casino hold em or three card poker. Those games are luck based. Black Jack takes skill.

Basically my system is as follows:

Find low priced table with a shoe I look for $5 tables.

I generally watch the player at third base. I actually like playing with those that do not understand the rules so I can yell across the table and influence their hands. The dealers usually agree with me because I play their hands by the book. Sometimes the dealers tell me to shut up but I keep doing it. The other players see me winning and they follow my lead. When they fail, I am always like, "Well... the odds are better if you play by the rules!"

I usually like an empty table with only 1-2 other players.

Enter game with $100. I don't need a lot to start. Sometimes I enter with $40 or 50 but I sit usually with $100.

I like 7 deck shoes and not single deck play. Single deck is too slow with the frequent shuffles and you cannot see a run of cards when they happen.

There are numerous card counting theories out there but that is too much info for me to process. However, I can remember pairs and aces. I generally compare my cards to others. I like when I have a run and others don't.

I figure the odds are anything could happen. A third of the time, there are shitty cards. A third of the time they are okay. And a third of the time they are good. The idea is to recognize the good runs if they happen and remember they cannot last the whole shoe. They occur in the beginning middle or end, but not the whole freaking thing.

So how do I do it? When I play this is what I do:

I bet $5. I continue to do this until I win. Usually it is one or two hands and I play conservative as all hell. I will stay on 15 or 16 against a high card. I play the automatic doubles and splits like 7-8's against the dealer 3-6 or the 10-11 against that 3-6 or whatever. But really I play it straight and tight.

Once I win a hand, I take the winnings and throw it on top. Now I am at $10 and I only am $5 into it. Now I play the next hand. If I am in a bad bad run, I may stay on $10 until I lose and usually it is to build up reserve for bigger bets but I am only $5 into the run. But if it is average or hot, I continue to pile $5 on top for each win until I hit $25. So if I am on a good run, after 5 wins in a row, I am at $25 a hand, I have $5 invested into it and I have made $30. If I just won $5 and kept only betting $5, at 5 hands I would have made $20 against my original $5. I break even if I only win two hands and lose $5 if I only win one in a row.

I think after 5 hands is where the risk is which is why I stop at $25 a hand. A few reasons why I stop here:

The dealer gives $25 chips against my bet because they do not want to dish out stacks of $5 chips. I bank those on the side. With 4 banked I have my original $100 back and I have $120 on the table (assuming I have my started at 0 winnings) but usually if I have my $100 back I have made money. I am in the black.

If I have to double or split a hand due to my rules, and I am on my original 5 hands, my investment is their money if I am on hand 3-5 in a row. Plus it can get stupid real fast if 10-11's start showing up everywhere.

I am cheap. $25 is the highest I will risk against any single bet. If I split a hand those are technically two bets not one so I treat each one separately. So if I have $25 out their, the next $25 is their money technically so I am good. (if I am within the 5 hands or more.)

Once I lose the run. I start back at $5 and then watch for it to be cold. I will even go to the restroom or walk around the casino with my chips held on the table so I can come back and catch a wave if it is dry.

Another good rule I have is setting a time limit. I make more money within 45 minutes to an hour than I do at any other time on the table. Self control means you walk whether you are $20 up or $400 up. If I lose $50 or half of what ever I bet more than $50 I am out. I get up and walk and move tables. I did this Friday night. I lost $50 in 15 minutes, bailed walked to another table, caught a run, made $200 and left.

If I just started the shoe or it is an auto shuffle shoe, you can get fucked real fast if you catch a run too soon and then try to play the entire shoe. Two... I leave a black jack table between 45 min-hour, period. I found that over the years I make a lot of money (if it is going to happen) right when I sit down or within 20 minutes. I do not think it is purely skill, it is just being observant and applying the rules. I mean after 5 hands... you start winning $25 a hand... There is no reason to get too greedy. It's okay to bail once you have a few hundred and go enjoy yourself elsewhere in the casino.

If I am in the middle of say a 10 hand run, I do loosen my rules. Say I have an ace 5, 6 or 7 against 5 or 6 on the dealer, I double. I split 2's, 3's and 4's. I will even split tens if I am feeling it hard against a 6 by the dealer. Especially if cards are up and everyone else has a bunch of low shit.

Yesterday, I applied my theory to Black Jack Switch. This is a game where you play two hands at the same time. After the first cards are dealt, they allow you to switch the top two cards to "make" hands. In theory if you have an Ace over a 3 and 7 over a Jack, you "switch" the Ace with the 7 and make Black Jack and a 10. I also found if however you are dealt a 13 or 14 on both hands and the dealer is showing 5 or 6, it is better to not switch to make a hand if you can. You could be stealing the card that the dealer needs to bust. Plus if the dealer busts with a 22 it is a push all the way so no need to try and make one hand and cancel the other hand out. I made $150 in 25 minutes playing this game, applying the above rules. I have yet to figure out if I have a system for Black Jack switch but I feel I can make one.

Follow my system and you will make some money. You won't make a whole lot unless you change the denominations. You can lose money too. It isn't an end all for black jack.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Does this dude write anymore???

Yeah... if I have something to write.

Almost a year ago... I went to the city of Carmel (not Caramel, Carmel) by myself. The trip was one of those... "I need to figure shit out" trips you take once in a while. I was in a bad spot. I was in considerable physical pain. I was in an unhappy marriage. I was severely depressed. I was pretty much hating life.

I went to Carmel because it was a place that I could just go and find some peace. I could take a time out and basically just drop out 3-4 days by myself. I wanted nothing more than to chill and figure things out.

One of the things I did was wander its beach. I walked up and down it barefoot for a few hours every day I was there. I even walked onto Pebble Beach Golf Course from the beach just to know the feeling of standing in the middle of that course. No one chased me off... just me and the 9th fairway.

I remember just staring out at the ocean... thinking about the future... Thinking where I was going next, like I was at the end of something and ready to take on the next challenge. I was a lost soul but I was already found. Or so I felt. But when I went home from this trip... things were totally going to be different from that point on. I was going to take control.

A surreal moment this past Sunday... almost a year later. I was standing on the beach, staring at the same ocean just a few miles north of Carmel. This time I had Elijah and my soul mate, Fara with me, and life could not be better.

Sunday, March 08, 2009

I am such a dick!

So... I pull into this parking lot of this store with my clean vehicle. I had just washed it on Friday because that is what I do, wash cars.

Anyway... There was a poor fella with a bike outside the store looking for an "economic stimulus package" from me.

"Hey man... can I wash your windows?" He says.

Gazing back at the clean car... "Ha... not today sir, but thanks for the offer!"

I head into the store and get my stuff and head out.

"Sir..." the man says, "Can you help me out with some spare change?"

I figure I had some time... "Um... why do you ask?"

"Well... I am down on my luck and..." he goes on but I butt in..

"No... you ain't down on your luck. You want some change so you can head over to the liquor store and get yourself some Night Train or MD 20/20! Admit it..."

"You got me!" he says...

I am such a dick!

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Febrile Seizures: Not that scary!

Well... it happened early this morning.

I woke up at 2 AM and Elijah was crying in his bed.  I went in and he was all sweaty.  I thought for a moment that he just had a bad dream or something.  I comforted him back to sleep...  Half asleep myself, I stumbled back into my bed and was out.

Only to be woken a 1/2 an hour later by his cries, "Elijah sleep in Daddy's big bed!"  

Okay...  So I picked him up and when I walked by the bathroom I saw in the mirror he was flush red.

I gave him motrin and unzipped his jammies and cooled him down with a wash rag for about 10 minutes.  He was calm... I was calm.  I left him unzipped and threw him in bed with me.

He cried for a pillow and blanket and went back to sleep.

About 3-3:15AM, I hear the loudest shriek in my ear.  It was Elijah...  I flipped over and saw his eyes rolled back in his head, gasping for air and spitting everywhere.

Well...  Been there before.  The 5 seconds of panic from waking like that went to, Elijah is having a seizure.  Really... the only thing you can do after witnessing this 4 times now is comfort him.  He is gonna seize for a minute and you are not going to like what you see in your little boy's eyes.  You have to keep thinking he will come out of it and you hold them so they get through it.

I just held him as he slowly stopped and just made sure he kept breathing which he did.  He completely passed out though and he was running a 101 degree temp in his arm so he was probably much hotter inside.  I took off his jammies and cooled him with wet rags.  I tickled his feet and hands to make sure he moved them and I talked to him and he responded but he was out.  15 minutes later... We were both asleep.  He was hyperventilating before the seizure a bit and I had not really noticed before but now in retrospect.  He woke breathing calmly this morning at 7:30.  I got him dressed and he played like normal and it was just 4 hours later.  

I have been wondering though all day if he had a couple in his own bed which is why he cried out initially.  The doctors keep telling us... This is normal... This is normal... This is normal...

To see him walk out of Starbucks this morning with his cup of apple juice put a tear in my eye.

I love the little guy.

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Hanging In There...

My lack of posts is mostly due to depression...

Been whacked by it for a week now.  Just comes in waves.  Next week it will probably be laced with pain.  

Yesterday, I drove down to the post office to get my mail in the Porsche.  The car is really loud because of it's air cooled motor and illegal muffler.  The thing sounds somewhat like a Harley at low speeds.

Mind you there are two hundred people physically living in the town here and so, you get noticed,,,

So this old lady sees me and the car and I get out and she says, "You drive too fast and your car is too loud."

I just stand back and say... "So?"

I like doing that to people...  They stand there flabbergasted when they have a problem or issue with something and you act like you don't care.  I really don't care...  I don't.

I guess I could say sorry... but why.  What was it her business anyway?  I just ride up and jump out and never meeting or talking to me before, she is all up in my grill nagging "You drive too fast and your car is too loud." 


Tuesday, February 17, 2009

A few things...

First... My body hurts like shit so ignore what a wrote a couple of weeks back. I serious contemplate the fact I have MS on a daily basis. The numb fingers and limbs are sort of a dead give away. I just got my new medical insurance so I can go figure this shit out.

Second, Vegas still loves me with $250 in my wallet sans the $50 I dropped trying step it up on the roulette table on the way to the cashier. It is the shit.

Third... Don't people that pour coffee for a living annoy the shit out of you with their perkiness or the fact they just might care how you feel?

Fourth... The Mirage Burger is the shit. Not bad for just before midnight room service.

Fifth... I am getting some grrr back on my taxes. I totally shit when I saw the number...

Saturday, February 07, 2009


Ain't no way, no how I am falling to sleep tonight for some reason... I am wide open... Perhaps it is all the crap at work that races through my mind.

I feel brutalized and have the urge to fire open my email and go back to work building worksheets and presentations to go make the next sale.

Just one of those nights where I cannot keep up with my racing mind.

Thursday, February 05, 2009


Get this...  This never happens~

I paid a bill online to an "unnamed" phone company and you would think in the age of electronics and computers that is would go through and be, well automatically transacted.

Afraid not...

The unnamed phone company LOST the transaction and it did not bounce back to my checking account.

So yeah... I paid a bill electronically and it got lost.  And then of course, they threatened to shut off the phone, etc. and so I got the phone company to stop.  

But the bank... calls me incessantly and takes down the same EXACT information.  Account number and amount.  And they continue to call.

So when they called today, I let them have it.  

The lady answered the phone...  the poor lady didn't know it was coming:

"WTF do I have to do to help (the bank) understand my account number and payment information that I have given to (the bank) at least 4-5 times in the past week?"

"Sir...  I have the claim number what is your name?"

"Isn't the claim number sufficient?  I just gave you that, all my information should appear right there.  Tell me what you see and I will verify that it is correct."

"Sir... I cannot do that, you have to tell me what the information I am asking for?"

"WTF?  I gave Well--(er the bank) this information 4 to 5 times and I am telling you what the claim number, account and the amount, I am asking you to verify that the information I have provided the last 4-5 phone calls is there."

"Sir... I cannot...--"

"Don't sir, me... I gave you a claim number and a description.  It's a 8 digit claim number, I can't make shit up with an 8 digit claim that correlates to a "phone company" bill "the bank" keeps calling me about. Do I have to show up in person to tell you WTF is going on?"

"Sir...  There it is right there... I made a claim that the "phone company" lost your payment. Well we need your account number for the "phone company"."

"You mean the same one in my online payment history.  The same one I gave the last 4-5 calls made to me by "the bank"?

I hate dealing with people this week

Monday, February 02, 2009

Ever feel like this?

This is how I feel some days. No matter what you do or how good you do what you do, how hard you try and make people happy, it all comes down to one little phrase:

Fuck my life...

Friday, January 30, 2009

Dying Breed...

First off... because this is unusual and I know if I write about it, it will comeback, but for some reason today I am pain free as I was yesterday. It is weird... Trying to figure out what is different...

I got the new Springsteen album and I must say, not only does it include the song he wrote for, "The Wrestler" it is a fantastic album.

Why are there no song writers like this around? It seems like it all stopped. Tomorrow Never Knows is a fantastic song... The epic first song, Outlaw Pete. And to top it off there is that song from the Wrestler at the end. The longer this guy's career lasts, the better and better his entire catalog of songs gets and lasts.

Just freaking good stuff...

Wednesday, January 28, 2009


I didn't think anything of it. Sirens in the morning outside my home. I lived in the urban area of near downtown Sacramento. It was not uncommon to hear a siren, or see a helicopter search light or anything.

Well, this morning... right before sunrise... or after... I don't know, I didn't sleep due to stress in my job and life anyway, I heard sirens. I thought nothing of it. It was a siren...

Well... it sucks. Some poor little kid was walking to the bus stop to take that long journey to school I did so many years ago up here in the sticks. Someone in a car I guess didn't see the kid in the street or whatever and ran the poor kid over. The kid went to the hospital and later died of his injuries.

My town is beyond rural... with like 200 people. There is the tiny gated community I live in and this is where it all happened. It sucks because, I guess because there are so few people out here... and even that I did not know the kid or really see the incident, it makes you think that we are not always safe no matter where we live or work or whatever we do with our lives. Sometimes if it is our time, it is just our time, period.

You can read about it here and here. (On another topic, what is with the comment spam on the last article)

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Indoor Fireworks

The "other" Elvis sings one of my favorite songs. One of the first ones I learned to do on my guitar. I have always gotten a lot of influence from Elvis.

So... I sat wiki'ing prescription drugs I have. Um... One says for, MAJOR depression. Huh... I didn't ever notice or really think about it.

I am a full functioning, hard working, punch the clock punching, 60 hour a week zombie dude these days. I have almost no money but... well.... I shouldn't say that... I actually have little debt but money just seems to fly out of my wallet faster than it comes in. And mainly it is utilities. That gas fire place we all enjoyed in December was $360. I cannot rationalize the use and cost of propane and propane accessories this month. On Monday, I kept going out every hour to see if I had a gas leak.

Well... no gas leak so my house won't blow up like that one in Rancho Cordova did. I am not on PG&E. If my February bill is that high... I am sending my hotel bills into the company to show how much I have been gone followed by the correlating water consumption drop. Also... why the fuck is propane so fucking high when oil is less than $40 a barrel. I know things about the petroleum industry and I know propane follows oil... Don't tell me it is refining capacity... It ain't shit... We have natural gas coming out of our ass in this country.

It is probably the small town joke of a town I moved too. Why are we called a town? When I punch my address into Google Maps it comes up... three towns over!!

Anyhow... I felt like griping...

I did my old job for a few hours this afternoon out in Colorado. It felt good to be a grunt in the field again.

Been go through a very big period of nostalgia lately because of Facebook. I have college friends, high school friends from the sticks and then even pre school friends from the city commenting on the same status updates. Totally weird and freaking but a lot of fun...

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Perfect Weekend!

You could not ask for better weather out here this weekend. It was close to 70, no wind... lots and lots of sun.

It was a lot of fun.

I took a drive....

Well it wasn't in the 70's the whole time. It was down right cold in the morning. We went to the Porsche parts place called Part's Heaven in Hayward. I had been meaning to get down and get a few exterior pieces for the car that I had either lost or they fell off the car over the years. I got new plastic lug nut caps and finally replaced the jack hole cover on the passenger sign. That is the dirtiest window you will ever see on one of my cars. I don't like washing this car because of the rust factor. It was awesome. We went down to Hayward then back up through Livermore than into Lodi for a party. Mostly in a T-Shirt the whole time.

Stevenot Winery

This morning we said, "Ah... what the heck... Let's go for a ride again...." So we went up to Starbucks then over to Twisted Oak for some wine. Then we took off up to Sheep Ranch from Murphys. It was warm so we popped the top off and did some hard riding through the hills. The car ran great all the way. Very, very fast... smooth handling... no issues. I have past up the car in age...:)

Heading into Sheep Ranch, which I think has like 45 people there... I expected to encounter, well some sheep...
Unfortunately all I could find was this field full of liberals. Well... we sped through Sheep Ranch down over to Railroad Flat near where Charles Ng and Leonard Lake killed all of those people and buried them in the 80's. It's one of the few things people know Calaveras County for.

Another unfortunate thing... I didn't stop and take more pictures. We jetted down from Railroad Flat through Glencoe and over to Mokolumne Hill. The locals are nice. All the roads have pretty much a rural speed limit of 55 mph and that is cool but a lot of these roads you would be an idiot if you went that fast. However, I can get on it and get down those hills quickly... never really leaving from 2nd and 3rd gear. The old folks actually got out of the way.

After getting through Moke Hill, I got on Paloma Rd and headed down through Campo Seco back over to my house. I actually need to get some pictures of Campo Seco so I can actually truly show my readers there actually is a Chinese Ghost Town up here.

What a fun ride... Perfect weather, not cold and not warm... Just perfect. Smoked a lot of turns and had perfect control. And my little car ran great. I could have sat in bed all weekend. I could have sat at home on the couch or finished hanging shelves in my garage but why? Nothing was more relaxing before a big travel week.

Saw Gran Torino too... Racing cars and Eastwood movies... Now that is living.

Friday, January 16, 2009



Just watch one ball

Thursday, January 15, 2009

My "Hometown"

Look we got a website now.

Okay... let's see, we got a gas station, an abandoned restaurant, a "historical" restaurant that mainly is a bar... A post office... A decorative rock place that takes up one half of what one might call "downtown"...

A Baptist Church...

And that is pretty much it.

220 people and a reservoir... And that pond they call a lake around the corner...

Photo of the month. There are hundreds of these things running around through out the year. Also there are some buzzards that fly around all day long. Canadian Geese are down here flying around right now. Coyotes at night... Rattlesnakes in the summer. Possums Raccoons... Deer...

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Dream or Nightmare?

I had a dream last night/early this morning that has  freaked me out all day.  

Perhaps it encompassed everything I have gone through the past year or two.  It was so weird... so real and it was like I had complete control and I remember every detail about it.

In a nut shell...

I basically was where I went to college.   I was carrying a trombone and baritone horn and I was off to a marketing/music class.  And I saw this fight break out.  So I ran and threw people into doors to protect them.  I ran into a bathroom and there was a woman crying in the bathroom.  I couldn't make her out.  But she tossed me a cellphone to help call someone.  I was staring through the crack in the door and I kept seeing the mean people's hands trying to get in.  I used the phone and it would not dial 911.  So I went, Wait.. this is a dream and pulled the fire alarm that I thought was to my left.  The sprinklers turned and an alarm sounded and the evil people ran.  It was me I guess being creative and fighting off demons.  Why I locked myself in a room though perplexes me.  

So then we broke free and I ran with people from college to a Home Economics Room.  Which I have no idea what the symbolism behind that is.

So then a bell rang and I had to go take a big test in a marketing class.

The real odd thing... Barack Obama was visiting the school.  So there was all this other activity at the school or what I was told was the school...  And so there were all these people running to go see the guy but I was taking this test.  In retrospect, I think it was me not caring about Obama.

So I get the test and teacher basically hands me a Tablet PC that was really paper thin.  She asked a question and we were to fill in an answer on the screen.  Then she left a question on the board and said she had to go to the other room and start the other test.  So I sat waiting for all the questions and I had this overwhelming fear she was not coming back because I had all the answers.  I felt like I was not being asked.  I feel like this all the time in my conscious life because I feel that people are not coming to me looking for answers like they used to.

Then I ran off to join this music group.  I saw the group playing and all I did was start playing along but kept walking... I was playing a trombone.  I later felt after I woke up that this part of the dream was me always feeling I let pursuing a music performing career pass by.  I always felt like I could be big and haven't yet.  What ever big means anyway.

But as I past the band playing, I felt like I needed new gear.  So I show up at this music store/car wash.  Two things I know everything about.  I walk inside and I am looking for some new horns.  And the owner, Mr. Lee was his name shows me this huge horn that was impossible to play. And it turned out to be a joke that everyone in the store laughed about.  I don't know the symbolism behind this.  But Mr Lee decided to take me to his car to look at new horns.  As I stepped out the door... and at this point it is one of those dreams where you do not see faces.  Someone from behind me... and this trips me out still hours later when reflecting on this dream... yells my name and says... hey remember me, I resized your ring after you got married.  What trips me out is I have no idea who this person was, in the dream I felt this person really knew me... but I could not recall them and I was struggling with it... but this person remembered details that did not actually happen... like my wedding ring being resized.

So then I went to this Mr. Lee's car (by the way the first guitar I bought was at a shop called Mr. C's) and picked out a new horn.  When I stepped into the store to pay... I was basically staring at the exit of the car wash.  And there were all these lights and stuff marketing stuff going on at the car wash and I got extremely frustrated because it was all laid out wrong.  Then my dad was there yelling at me... and all the employees at the car wash were telling me he was mad.  I cannot think of a time in my life where my Dad ever got mad at me.  Seriously... except for maybe when I worked for him at the car wash. :)  I later find it was because I had left a trombone on the driveway "on".  I walked up to the trombone... and this was really weird because I have been around so many car washes that it felt like all the employees were real... but to me they were just your average Hispanic guy that typically works at the car wash.  They are standing around the trombone and it is basically on the ground against it's case humming like a gas weed eater on idle.

Fucking weird.  I woke up at this point.  It was 7 AM.  I grabbed my computer and wrote it all down.  So many themes in my life came up in this.  A lot of my fears... frustrations...  Symbolically why I was at college is because I always felt like I was a stranger there even though I thoroughly enjoyed college and probably miss some parts of that in my life.  Like drinking all night after studying... and realizing you had a midterm at 8 AM and it was 7:30 AM still thoroughly buzzed then aceing the test.  But the symbolism... this was a place that I felt safe... despite in reality I was on a big scholarship and could have been broke off from school because at the time it was $16-18K a year to go there.

The test frustrated me in the dream.  I really had this anticipation of what questions were being asked but not getting the chance to answer them.  I feel like that all the time.  Especially in my line of work where I have to do so much critical thinking.  But I always feel people go elsewhere.  Perhaps I am trying to tell myself something about how people are treating me.  Should I have gone out of the class to try and get more questions?  Hmmm....

I am stuck on this dream... This is probably a dream that I remember most in my life.

I felt weird today too.  Like I was hungover.  My head hurt all day and my left ear and face was all tingly.  I was panicked when I woke up too... all sweaty.

Sunday, January 04, 2009

All the Toys and Something to Play for...

This Christmas, I got some gifts that at first glance may not have been very... well, expensive or something I maybe have asked for or what one may consider to be valuable like an iPhone or Big Screen TV or a watch.

They were simple but thoughtful gifts and have come to mean so much to me the past week.

The first one, the biggie... Willie Nelson's guitar strap. It's hand made. Red white and blue and is featured in this photo. It came from him so I know it is real. It is pretty awesome and special and is made for my acoustic guitars. I definitely will use it when I play.

The next few items were things that were from another time, another place in my life. First was a Michigan Wolverines hat. Back in high school, I was always seen wearing Michigan gear. I had this fascination of playing in the Wolverines marching band at football games and going to their music school. I ended it up settling for the local but prestigious Conservatory of Music at Pacific. But it was my dare to dream, and even though I did not make it to Michigan, I had a rewarding music life in my late teens and early twenties winning solo awards, playing the Star Spangled Banner at my high school graduation and making the California State Honor Band my senior year.

The other thing I got was a small bottle of valve oil for my trumpet and euphonium (baritone horn). I had been saying recently about all my brass instruments which I have displayed around my new house that I needed valve oil to move the valves and even play. As well as needing some silver polish to get the tarnish off the mouthpieces. And then I started playing... After knocking some tarnish off of my sound and embouchure, I got some killer big brass sounds out of my trumpet, trombone and baritone. It was like riding a bike. And then from memory, playing the songs I knew and getting it all back. I have played all afternoon.

The last thing I got was a pair of blue Converse All-Stars. These go way back with me... To when I was a skater back in Frisco, riding my skateboard down the foggy hills, dodging traffic and destroying my knees riding walls and stuff. I had to give it all up when my parents moved me back up to the sticks but the nostalgia of slipping those things and hot rodding around in my Porsche has been fun. What a great thing to bring back to my identity.

One other gift that I got... Not from Christmas or anything was when I put Elijah to sleep the other night in his bed. I was laying with him and I started singing "Three Little Birds" by Bob Marley over and over to get him to quiet down. I have found singing works with him to put him in the mood to shut his eyes so I do it. But after repeating the song over and over for about ten minutes, I sang:

"Don't worry... About a thing... Because every little thing... "

And Elijah came in on key even singing... "Gonna be all right."

Tears in my eyes... I kissed him on the forehead and held him tight.

Thank you!!!

Thursday, January 01, 2009

Probably Finally Did It

Happy New Year...

As I crawled out of bed on my hands and knees this morning taking 20 minutes or so to rise to my feet.  Hurts more today than yesterday.

I think I finally fell apart.  Uggh!!!

I had a good New Year.  Just a relaxing steak dinner that I cooked, a bottle of wine and a shot of whiskey at midnight while we watched Dick "Give It Up Dude, You Are So Done" Clark count down the ball drop.  He was off on that count by a second when it first started.  

It was great though last night.  I had a real nice time by a warm fire and a nice meal.