Friday, December 30, 2005

It's Like, Totally Annoying

Whenever I think of the term Pet Peeves, I think of men's magazines where the girl lists her likes and dislikes. Not that I've read that many men's magazines, but it's become something of a stereotype.

We all have pet peeves, among mine are:
a) the crinkling of plastic
b) people who mumble
c) folks who simply must touch you while they're chatting

Of course, some of the worst pet peeves are encountered around the house. All of us have a spouse or roommates who do things that get under our skin. We can nag others to change their ways, but this is rarely a fruitful approach.

Well ladies and gentlemen, we now have a solution -
Mutual Pet Peeve Restraining Orders!

It's a form of barter, really.
I'll make sure that I put the remote control back in its basket - -
if you make sure to properly fold down the inner bag in the cereal box, so the Apple Jacks don't get stale.

We'll have a stylish certificate with verbose legalese and a nice gold emblem to make it look all nice and official, sign and date, and we're good to go! No need to notarize!

For the person who does not meet their end of the bargain - they must do some agreed-upon chore for the other person. We'd learn to be neater and more polite people, and occasionally, someone would have to do chores for us! Yeah!

Thursday, December 29, 2005

So Um... Er... Yeeah.

My next job, starting in January is testing a music game - and part of the game is making your own music, and part of that is doing vocals.

Which means I'll have to sit here at my desk, surrounded by coworkers who are quietly clicking mouses and typing away on their keyboards, making polite work-related phone calls...

...While I'm bustin out with crazy cadence and mad rhymes, yo. Old school. Bringing the fresh flow and the lunatic lyric, YO.

If you knew me, you'd know how hilarious this image is. I'm a white boy from Ohio. I'm gonna have to sit at my desk with a big bottle, downing shots of liquid encouragement all day every day.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

How to Microwave a Burrito

1. Wrap frozen burrito in paper towels.
2. Microwave on high 1 minute.
3. Flip the burrito upside down.
4. Microwave on high 1 minute.
5. Repeat steps 2, 3, 4 until burrito begins to hemorrhage its contents.


Monday, December 26, 2005

By Request

Oddest Christmas Moment...

Letting my new breadmaker (Thanks Cindy!) bake empty to burn off the "manufacturing oils". It was a weird smell.

Yeah, our Christmas was very peaceful, for that to be the oddest moment.

I Got a Job for Christmas

As you may know, I'm a video game tester. I've been working on the same game for about two years now, from the concept stage to the present.

It's a great concept, I work for a medical research company, we're making a game for sick children - showing them what the battle looks like inside the body, and how important it is to follow a Doctor's instructions.

No matter how great a project is, it's cool to go on to the next one. You can get tired of hearing the same music, lines of audio, and etc all day every day for months or years.

The current project is finally coming to an end soon, and the next day I'm getting a new job with a different company... And I get to work at the same office and keep my desk - how cool is that?

The new project will start in January and is all about making music. The problem is, I don't know anything about music (I made that clear at the interview). The only thing I know about music is that I like to listen to it. Oh - and that birds sitting in interesting patterns on power lines can inspire a composer - I learned that from a TV commercial.

So I'll be learning a lot, hopefully.

Since I'll be making music for eight hours a day for months on end, a slightly non-terrible piece of music by yours truly will have to come out of it. It's just a matter of time, right? Right?

If I do manage to make anything decent, I'll post it here. In the meantime, if anyone knows of any good music resources I might study - like, nomenclature and theory - something for complete newbies - let me know!

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Blogging Conundrums - No Longer!

For anyone who tries to write a blog post on a regular basis, coming up with a topic can be difficult. You sit in front of your computer and watch the blinking cursor, and wonder what the hell you're going to ramble about today.

Well wonder no longer! Just take a cue from The Great and Powerful Kato (of WITFITS Kato Katonian renown) and use the Unofficial, Unendorsed, Totally Unauthorized...

...WHAT WOULD KATO BLOG? Deluxe Topic Spinner!

Friday, December 23, 2005

Kill Bill: Alternate Ending

"Hi is this Fred at the front desk? Hi Fred, this is Bill. Oh, I've been better. Listen, I'm gonna need a wheelchair over here right away, and two big guys to lift me into it. Ten minutes? Great."

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

She Who Knows

I was in the car on the way to work - waiting at a red light.

I glanced over to the sidewalk, where a woman was waiting to cross the street. Our eyes met, and I had a sudden shock as my brain yelled out: "She knows! She knows my secrets!".

I quickly looked away, and was glad when the light turned green so I could speed off. What if there was one unknown secret-keeping person on the planet for each one of us?

What to do if you should meet them - Ask them questions? Avoid them like the plague? Run them over with your car?

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

2005's Must-Have Stocking Stuffer

We’ve all been there – in a public bathroom minding your own business, unfortunately sharing the space with one or more rude Stall Dwellers. Of course, we’re too sophisticated to speak up with some crude comment or blunt suggestion to challenge the occupant of the nearby stall.

The solution:
The Bathroom Bastard - an innocuous device that looks like an air freshener, but plays pre-recorded audio. Over 50 random messages! This high-tech wonder features 43 channel polyphonic ultra-fidelity and sounds so real, everyone will be fooled! You plant it, and make your escape.

“Hey buddy, would a courtesy flush kill ya?”

“Fake-cough all you want, I heard that. Damn, and smelled it."

“Nice socks - Did you get dressed in the dark this morning?”

“I hope you don't make that noise in front of your boyfriend.”

New! Available just in time for Christmas:
The Bathroom Bitch. Now girls can get in on the fun!

"If you sprinkle when you tinkle.... Wipe it up! Were you raised in a barn?"

“Some people should be banned from BOGO sales at Payless.”

“Too bad they don't have tanks on the backs of these things any more. It's so much harder to snort coke from the toilet paper dispenser.”

“1985 called - it wants its shoes back.”

Order now - Operators are standing by!
Act Now and receive the Bathroom Sex Sounds Simulator at no extra charge!


(Thanks to Vicariously Cindy, without whose input I could not have written this post!)

Monday, December 19, 2005

I hate to admit it…

But I’ve never seen A Christmas Story.

I know it’s supposed to be a new holiday classic and all, but the preview always rankles me. A whiny kid and a bunch of cold-hearted adults in lots of uncomfortable family and gift-angsty moments. It seems like a cringer on the order of
Meet the Fockers, which I also have no interest in seeing.

In my defense, I’d like to tell you all how much I love Egg Nog.
Mmn, how to put this: if Egg Nog were a woman, I’d CENSORED CENSORED and CENSORED.

Friday, December 16, 2005

What If...

What if cars were alive, and had feelings?

What if the steering wheel was their erogenous zone?

Thursday, December 15, 2005

I Suppose

This morning at the gym, Extremely Annoying Very Loud Talking Guy was thoughtfully and gently helping two retired folks - who were at least 75 years old - patiently showing them how to use the treadmill. It was a touching scene, I wish I were so helpful.

I guess he's not all bad after all.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Surprise Me

I hover over the toaster, taking it in with deep breaths:

Soaking up the hot wheaty goodness of the toasting waffles, and the sweet tart-tangy of the waffley blueberries.

They pop up like a Jack-in-the-box - BANG!

I jump with a start, as the knew-it-was-coming, startled-anyway peek-a-boo-surprise response kicks in, and for that moment I feel like a kid again.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Compost Secret

You've all heard of Post Secret, I'm sure.

It's a beautiful idea, and if any blog should be required reading for teens, it should. It's like Chicken Soup for the Jaded Soul.

Except jaded souls rarely indulge in chicken soup, I fear.
Rum-n-Coke for the Jaded Soul? Now you're talking.

Anyway, I had an idea that people could just send me their secrets, on a little fragment of something biodegradable.

I'd sprinkle secrets in my compost bin, along with the yard clippings and autumn leaves and dinner scraps.

I'd toss the secret scraps with the compost like it was a big, fuzzy salad.
And since no one would ever read the secrets, they'd all be true.

Every Last One.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Car Troubled

All this talk about Hybrid and Hydrogen-Cell cars is great, fuel alternatives are a must. But with millions of more cars on the road every year, it’s not going to matter how they’re powered – congestion is just going to keep getting worse.

Yet, I wouldn’t volunteer to give up my car.

If only Public Transportation wasn’t such a heinous way to travel, I’d go that route. I’ve spent years getting around by bus, especially when working downtown – even when I had a car. It's awful.

Cities aren’t designed properly to accommodate millions of cars, no matter how many new highways you build. I’m waiting for some manic mogul to build The City of Tomorrow out in the desert somewhere. It would be rated for exactly X number of people, and no more...

Lotsa turbolifts and moving walkways, not a car in sight. Works for me.

Friday, December 09, 2005

The Secret Name of Secretude

You know how you can be typing along, not paying very close attention to what you're doing, and all of a sudden your fingers drift to the left or right on the keyboard - Instead of getting the text you were expecting, you get something totally wrong.

This has been happening to me lately when I type my name. Instead of "Mike" I'll end up typing "Nuje". It used to happen rarely, but it happened three times yesterday.

So I have to wonder, is my subconscious trying to tell me something (beyond the fact that I'm a sloppy typist)?

Do I have a long-lost twin brother named Nuje? Is there a place called Nuje, and I'm supposed to go there? Am I to apply numerology to the word and divine some winning lottery numbers?

Am I supposed to go on a worldwide quest of danger, intrigue, and exotic sexy spies to discover the Hidden Truth of the Nuje?

Is the Mystery of The Nuje worth dying for?


Thursday, December 08, 2005

Credi-Bull #4

Credi-Bull - a news item that might be fact, or might be fiction.

The Sci-Fi Channel announced a new series in development for Spring 2006 - 'Shakespeare in New York'.

The story goes - The Eternal Bard himself was bitten by a vampire just before his "death" in 1616, and even now prowls the streets of New York solving literary crimes and trying to sell his new works.

I know. I don't believe it either.

Real or Fake?
(Vote in the 'comments' section, answer to be revealed tomorrow)

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

They Came From Inside The Walls

Despite the fact that we keep the kitchen pretty clean, we've ended up with a bit of an Ant problem lately.

I loaded the dishwasher on Monday night and was about to run it when Cindy reminded me that it was after 11PM and since our dishwasher is a noisy old behemoth, I might want to wait until morning.

So I did.
And then I forgot in the morning.

When I got home from work, I opened the dish washer to add soap and discovered that EVERYTHING inside the dishwasher was completely acrawl with hundreds of ants.

I mean, if you wanted to make a scary movie about ants, and there needed to be a very creepy-crawly scene with ants that would make the audience cringe and squirm, just shoot some footage of my dishwasher right then.

There was no little path of ants leading to the dishwasher - either the entire colony was inside my appliance, or they came from inside the walls.

What else could I do? I added some soap and I ran the dishwasher. Twice. I still had to hand-wash everything to get rid of the ant carcasses.

But the point of telling you all this is, this morning I was thinking about Tuesday evening and the ants, and wondered what would have happened if I'd put an ant-covered bowl into the freezer. What happened to ants in the cold? Would they die, or go into some sort of hibernation?

Then I scolded myself, for considering freezing dozens of innocent ants just to see what would happen.

And yet, I hadn't given drowning them a second thought. How odd.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Dear Annoying Man,

So there's this guy who works on the same floor as I do - at a different company. He's a real nondescript type - white guy, dark hair, business suit - there are millions of them.

Once every two months or so we end up in the elevator together, and he says "Hello?? Hey There?" As if we're best friends from college, and I'm snubbing him.

Dude! I don't know you! We've spent all of two minutes together in our lifetimes, and it wasn't memorable, all right? We're not pals.

So Mr. Nondescript Business Man on the 6th Floor of My Building, if you're reading this; please back off - you're all up in my grill - or whatever you kids say these days.

Monday, December 05, 2005


I was in the dentist's chair early on Saturday morning (I don't know what I was thinking when I made the appt so early) and I had a mouthful of tooth-impression-goo, unable to speak.

The Dental Assistant was sitting quietly next to me, waiting for the goo to set up, and I had the overwhelming, uneasy sensation
that she was about to confide something to me:

"Sometimes, when I'm all alone in here I just turn on the gas and tear off my clothes and dance around."

And then I wouldn't be able to speak, but I'd look at her and she'd look at me, and then the Dentist would come back into the room and we'd pretend it never happened.

Friday, December 02, 2005

So Wrong


"Hi this is Frank with Brinks Home Security. So... What are you wearing?"



"Hi this is Frank with Brinks Home Security. I think there's a fire in the master bedroom, my sensors are off the scale and - wait, that's just you."



"Hi this is Frank with Brinks Home Security. Could you windex the camera lens in the bedroom?"



"Hi this is Frank with Brinks Home Security. How about you go put on the that blue teddy, with the lace? I love that one."


"Frank, Honey I love you but it's getting late. Aren't there some emergencies you could save people from? Oh and pick up some milk on your way home, will you?"

Thursday, December 01, 2005

I'd like to thank Juan Valdez and Lakshmi,


I did it!

I broke 50,000 words (
50,308 to be precise) at about 11:50PM last night, pant pant pant!

I was sure that the NaNoWriMo servers would be far too overloaded with last-minute wanna-be's like myself - I was sure that I wasn't gonna be able to get my word count validated by midnight, but it worked fine the first time!

Big time kudos to the most excellent
dshoffman, my NaNoWriMo co-competitor who finished like 97 hours before me! We both won, YEAH! High Five DUDE!

An generous helping of Negative Kudos to my other NaNoWriMo co-competitor
Invisible Lizard, you're a quitter, you quitting quitter you. Tsk, I say. Tsk and pay up. Just send my winnings to charity.

So yeah I did the fifty thousand words, but I'm not proud of all of them. I'm proud of the accomplishment, that I actually had the stubbornness to stick to it for 30 days, and to write when all I wanted to do was nothing.

The inexorable appeal of doing nothing is like unto a black hole, I tells ya. Well I don't need to tell you, you're doing nothing right now. And loving it, I daresay.

The novella I spent November pounding out is titled FAST, which is an acronym for the the name of an epidemic that sweeps the world, resulting in extreme allergies (resulting in anaphylactic shock) to almost all food. It's more about people than the crisis itself, a series of vignettes.

I'll be posting the more readable chunks of FAST on my fiction blog, Anon Fiction... over the next couple of days. If you're interested, take a look. I'll let y'all know when it's up for viewing.