So I got home last night from playing basketball and noticed that my Tivo was recording. Since Girls Gone Wild – Ultimate Spring Break Uncensored doesn’t come on till Friday, I couldn’t imagine what was recording. For a split second, I thought someone had hacked my Tivo and was recording illicit movies without my express, written consent. For the record, I just finished playing two basketball games back to back and probably had little or no oxygen to spare for the brain which is why I thought someone would actually hack my Tivo. Go figure.

Anyway…I fired up the TV, stereo, and satellite using my super-deluxe, one-button macro and noticed that some program on Discovery was being recorded. That’s when I remembered that I’d accidentally chosen this crap to record the night before. I guess I didn’t delete it like I thought. I don’t know why, but seeing that crap recording when I didn’t want it to made me mad.

I started flipping through the Tivo controls, trying to find a simple ‘stop recording this shit’ option, which does exist but couldn’t be found at that moment. The more I tried to find it, the grouchier I became. Yes, I know this is a stupid reason to get mad, but it happens. After going back and forth and up and down through the menus, I finally found something that looked promising. I selected it, hit “Yes”, hit “Yes” again as I thought “Quit asking me stupid freakin’ questions and just stop recording this crap already”. I should have paid a wee bit more attention to that last “Yes”.

You see, folks, Tivo has a cool feature that allows you to delete everything you have recorded. To make sure you don’t screw up and accidentally delete everything, it calmly asks you if you’re sure that you want to do delete everything, including the protected stuff. Notice I keep using the word “everything”. That’s because it deletes “EVERYTHING”. I now have 119 hours and 30 minutes of recording time available. I had 40 hours…before I deleted “EVERYTHING”.

Actually, not everything is gone. The only thing left on the Tivo is the one thing I was trying to delete.

Public Service Announcement

I just found out that two friends of mine were hit by an SUV yesterday as they were riding their bikes. Fortunately, neither of them was hurt and the driver did stop to check on them. The driver said he didn’t see them because the sun was in his eyes. I find this hard to believe since I know their location and time of day. The sun is not really in your line of sight at that time, however, I’ll give the guy a break because he did stop.

Folks, please be aware of cyclists on the road. These guys were about 200 yds from the bike lane and were trying to get to it when struck. I know there are many assholes out there who ride, but the majority of us just like to get out and get some excercise. Mississippi has very few bike lanes so we’re forced to ride on the roads right next to cars. For the most part, people here are tolerant of us provided that we try and give them enough room to pass and don’t bunch up on two lane roads.

I’m very thankful that nothing serious happened and ask that all of you who drive keep an eye out for us. We’re sure as hell looking for you.

Did you know?

Did you know that thin spaghetti turns red when left in the fridge for several months while pasta shells turn black?

Did you know that whole-kernel corn doesn’t change color at all when left for 6 months?

Did you know that frozen ground beef with an October expiration date is not good even in stuff like chili?

Did you know that you should take out the trash before the frozen fish thaws?

Did you know that I don’t clean out my fridge often enough?

Asian Grocery

My buddy David and I went to the local Asian grocery store today. Man, do they have some weird shit. Dried squid that is probably like squid jerky, quail eggs, snow pea chips, dried, fried squid, wasabi peas, sugared ginger, and tons of other stuff that I can’t begin to imagine what’s inside. The pictures don’t really help, either. I would like to go back with someone that actually knows what’s in the packages. Some of the stuff looked pretty good, but I’d be afraid to try it without knowing what it was.

My favorite part was reading the English translation of what’s inside. We bought something called ‘Muscat Gummy’ which seems to be muscadine-flavored gummy candy. We didn’t buy them for the candy, we bought them for the description on the package:

Its translucent color so alluring and taste and aroma so gentle and mellow offer admiring feelings of a graceful lady. Enjoy soft and juicy Muscat Gummy.

We also bought grape-flavored Hi-Chew and some other kind of candy that looked like Nerds and tasted like ass. The Hi-Chew wasn’t bad, but I get the feeling that the Japanese don’t like things as sweet as Americans.

They did have some cool chopsticks, mugs, and assorted china, plus a really cool Chinese butcher knife for only $25.00. I may head back there later and pick one up.

No, it looked like this.

I swear, if I added a step to the operations group’s procedure manual that said, “Shit on yourself”, there is one person in that group that would do it every time, no questions asked. I’m serious. I just handled a help desk for this person and it was amazing. It took me 10 minutes to get this person to answer a simple question.

One of their monitors seemed to be going bad. The whole thing was bathed in lavender and it made it difficult to read some of the console messages as they scrolled by. This person mentioned that another member of my group installed this specific monitor a few weeks ago since the old one went bad.

“So the old one looked like this,” I said, pointing to the screen.
“No,” she replied, “it was different.”
“Hmm,” I said, “what was the problem with it?”
“It looked like that,” she said, pointing to the screen.
“So the old one did look like this,” I said, pointing to the same screen she just pointed to.
“No, it was different.”
Inside, I’m thinking, what in the F* are you talking about? I say ‘did it look like this’ and you say no. But then you say ‘it looked like that’, pointing to the same freakin’ thing. I try again, slowly.
“OK,” I said, “2 weeks ago, this monitor was replaced, right?”
“OK. And we replaced the monitor because it was going bad, right?”
OK. Now we’re getting somewhere.
“Did the monitor that was going bad look like this?”
“No,” she said.
“No? Then why did we replace it,” I said.
“Because it was going bad like this one is,” she responded, pointing to the lavender-hued screen.
“So the old monitor did look like this one?” I said, pointing to the same freaking lavender-hued screen.
“No, it was different.”
Ho-lee shit. It was all I could do to not scream, “What is your major malfunction, Pyle! I started again from the beginning.
“Wait a minute. You’re telling me that the monitor was replaced because it was going bad, right?”
“And when the new monitor was installed, it looked fine, right?”
“And now we have to replace the replacement because the replacement is bad, right?”
”We’re replacing this monitor,” I say, pointing at it, “because now it’s going bad, right?”
“YES! Right!” (you can see the light go on)
“And the reason we’re replacing this monitor,” I say, still pointing at it, “is because it looks like the other one, right?”
“No. The other one looked different.”
“What do you mean it looks different?” I say, enunciating each word like I’m talking to a 3 year old.
At this point, I’m really getting pissed. I can’t imagine what the frick she’s talking about. How can it look the same, but be different?
“It looked different,” she says, pointing to the plastic bezel around the monitor, “this was different and the button was different.”
“Do. What?”
“Yes,” she says, “this part of the monitor was different on the old one”.
“Um…What?,” I say slowly, “you’re talking about the actual monitor? You’re saying that the monitor was different?”
“Yes,” she says, pointing to the monitor and looking at me like I’m the idiot, “that’s what I’ve been trying to tell you. This monitor looks different than the old one.”
“Dude, I don’t give flying flip about what the monitor looked like. All I want to know is”, I say, tapping on the monitor’s screen, “did the old monitor look this bad.
“Oh yeah,” she says, tapping the screen, “the colors were all messed up just like this one.”

Living my life

Well, Dear Reader, sorry for not posting in a while, but I’ve had some issues that I’ve had to deal with of a personal nature. For me, as always, it’s issues with my family. There are some days when it’s all I can do to not just pack my shit up and disappear.

Y’all remember last July when I had to go to Florida because my Mom broke her ankle? Well, at that time, I discovered that my Mom was just this side of being a shut-in. She wouldn’t leave her apartment, she had groceries or take-out delivered, and she had someone to do the laundry and clean. For a while after I left, she seemed to be getting her shit together, but it didn’t last long. When I ask her now if she’s getting out, she always says the same thing, “I make plans to get out, but I never follow through”. I even had one of her best friends call and tell me that she never gets out, cancels plans at the last minute, and just stays in her recliner. I know the friend meant well, but my response was basically, ‘what would you have me do’?

In the past, I would sit in my apartment (or house) and worry myself sick over it. We’re talking about getting up in the middle of the night and pacing back and forth, trying to figure out what to do. It got the point where it’s all I would think about. I would make myself nuts trying to figure out what I could do to change the way my Mom lived her life, how I could motivate her to get out, how I could change her outlook, how I could get her over her depression. One day, though, I had a revelation. I realized that it’s not my responsibility. I am not the person who has to force these changes…She is. I realized that I needed to make sure she had food, clothing, and shelter, while the rest was up to her.

At first, it sounded cruel and it bothered me a lot. It felt like I was abandoning her and I would picture her sitting in her recliner all day, doing nothing. But the more I thought about it, the more it made sense. I was not responsible for how she chose to live her life. I finally figured out that it’s her life to live and if she chooses to live it in a vacuum, then that’s HER choice. My brother and I have given her every opportunity to enjoy her retirement and if she chooses to continue on in this manner, I can no longer feel that it is my responsibility to change her.

I have a life of my own to live. I refuse to be put into a position where I do nothing but worry about her. That is not a life I wish to live. If I seem cruel to you, then I’m sorry. Well, no, actually I’m not sorry. As I’ve said, I will make sure that she has a place to live, food to eat, and clothes to wear. The rest is up to her.

Completely Worthless

Is what I will be for the rest of the day. It seems our Real Media server does have some use after all. As does the company’s cable connection. IT’S MARCH MADNESS, BABY!!.

Oh…gotta go, the game’s back on. Shhh! If anyone asks, I’m in a meeting.

Work Tip #10

If you are required to use a Help Desk Tracking System, it is advisable to write clear and concise sentences when entering resolutions to problems. However, making the resolution rhyme will not be seen as a valuable use of company time and/or resources.

An example of what not to do:

I installed Service Pack 3 for Office XP,
but it didn’t solve the problem entirely.

When Mary tried to view her deleted email,
Outlook wouldn’t allow it and the program would fail.

We did an exmerge since her account was corrupt,
It worked like a charm when Outlook came up.

Mary then complained that her fonts were too small,
so I changed her resolution, and it fixed them all.

I called her today and she’s doing just fine.
She said, “Thanks for your help”, and I said, “Anytime”.


This is my old bike:

And this is my new bike:

The reason for the new bike is the cycling team I help out changed bikes because of some ugliness with a sponsor. I chose to not ride the old bike anymore and got this su-weet new one. It’s a Guru Flite with a custom paint job, Speedplay pedals, FSA Carbon bars and seat post, and Velomax Orion II wheels. It weighs a grand total of 18.1 pounds.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go stare at it for a few more minutes.

PS – If you look at the team picture, I’m the chunk of lead on the far right in the white shirt.