Sunday, June 27, 2010

Domestic Bingo

Here's another game I'm going to invent - Domestic Bingo™. Ever since The Wife and I were married and got our own place, some of our weekends feel formulaic. So, print this card out on Friday mornings and see how many squares you get by Sunday. Don't get me wrong, I love my Wife and being married - it's just that some weekends are way more predictable than others.

Target is the freebie square in the center because really, a weekend isn't a weekend without a trip to Target.

Friday, June 25, 2010


Since space is an important issue in our new place, we've been downsizing a lot. I'm amazed at how much stuff I've gotten rid of. A few months ago, I was going through a collection of my old drawings and paintings. I had sketches going back to like 4th grade and I was thinking to myself, "This isn't a good drawing. If I save this, it's going to sit in a closet for 30 years and then my kids (if we ever have them) are going to come across it and decide what to do with it." So rather than put the burden on them in the future, I'm getting rid of a LOT of stuff. Chances are that I will never have a museum built in my honor, so if my drawing of "Tanglor, the Monster from Saturn" gets recycled into a Cheerios box, that's cool with me.

Part of me is also intrigued by the idea of leaving nothing behind. I recently tossed out the journal I kept from 11th grade through my first three years of college. I read through it and the majority of it was about girls I liked, and hoping they would like me back. I'm happily married and there isn't a need to re-read my futile words again and again. (It's probably in the Simi landfill at this point if anyone is looking for it.)

One awesome thing we did was condense an entire collection of over 250+ DVDs into one small box that fits under our coffeetable. We recycled all of the cases, and artwork / inserts that come with it, and put the discs in individual paper sleeves. How often am I going to pick up the DVD case for Swingers and read the back? I own the movie, I love the movie, I can recall the plot description -- and if I can't, the Internet is always standing close by.

Am I insane for getting rid of this much stuff? Am I going to wish I had that drawing of Tanglor, or my journal filled with thoughts of my high school crush? Is it ridiculous to keep only a minimum number of "things"?

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Reason #88

Presenting Reason #88 why I love* my company...

There's been a freeze on salary increases since last July, I frequently run out of work to do and we hired three new people in the last month. When that freeze gets lifted come this July, all of us better get raises.

* - yep, still sarcastic

Tuesday, June 15, 2010


I think this will make Facebook complaint #3 for me, so let's get it over with - why do people post status updates mentioning people that are not on Facebook? Examples I've seen in the last few months -

"Happy birthday to my wonderful husband" -- even though this person's husband does not have a FB account and is, in fact, opposed to the site. Are you going to relay all of the follow up comments you solicited on behalf of your husband's birthday?

"Happy birthday to my Grandma, who would have turned 88 today!" -- great, not only is this person NOT on Facebook, they're also fucking dead.

Stop it already!!!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Freeway Overpass Signs

I don't know if this happens in other parts of the country but I've noticed an increasing number of signs being hung on freeway overpasses. You know, you're driving down the 118, look up and there's a bedsheet hung to the overpass that says "Happy 18th birthday, Natasha!"

Consider this, the average person is doing 55-65mph on a freeway and they have maybe 3-4 seconds to see your bedsheet that you spray painted on. This message is for one person (if they even see it) and it's a distraction to a thousand others.

The other thing that annoys me about this is it never gets taken down later that day - it sits there for 2-3 days until it falls off or the weather beats it down, which in my opinion, means it's on par with graffiti and/or littering.

Stop it already!!!

Friday, June 11, 2010

Rookie Champions

With the NBA Finals underway and inching closer to conclusion, I got to thinking about pro athletes and the concept of winning a championship. The goal of every pro athlete is to be the champion and there inevitably have to be some rookies that get drafted to a team that takes off. There's probably some rookie that got drafted to the New Orleans Saints last season and barely saw any playing time - yet they're on the team, so he's got a Super Bowl ring.

Also consider Adam Morrison - a standout college basketball player who hasn't quite hit his mark in the NBA. He got traded to the Lakers last year, got a championship ring with them last year and is headed towards another.

Some players go their whole lives without ever making it past Round 1 of the playoffs and some players end up on a championship team but don't contribute much of anything. I wonder if a player is more excited or frustrated by an experience like this.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010


Today marks my 32nd birthday. Hurray. I don't know specifically when this shift happened but my birthday has gone from something I really looked forward to something I could easily forget about. Ten years ago, I would get all of my friends together for a big birthday dinner and hangout. Then, that got kind of annoying because you have to reserve a table for 20 at BJ's and paying the bill is an utter disaster. Five years ago, I'd get all of my friends together at a bar and everyone gets their own check. Much easier, yet kinda frustrating because I could never spend enough time with everyone that was kind enough to show up.

I'm almost tempted to go out with a handful of friends but then that excludes a lot of people from the larger "group." It's almost easier to not do much at all in terms of a big celebration.

Maybe I'm just getting more anti-social and crabbier (see: upcoming posts) as I get older.

I'll go out to dinner with The Wife tonight, and if we're both done battling illnesses, maybe see an improv show on Saturday.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Balcony Bingo

I'm going to start a new game called Balcony Bingo. The Wife and I have a neighbor across the way that looooves to talk on her cellphone on her balcony. Loud. Or loudly, whichever it is. I wouldn't mind if it was an occasional thing but the balcony has become her "private" phone booth while also polluting my auditory space.

From two phone calls on Monday, we learned how much she is in debt, what her current health problems (and prescibed medication) are and the issues she and her boyfriend are working on. I'm very tempted to start leaving notes on her front door saying things like, "Hope your acid reflux clears up" or "You and your boyfriend can work through this."

In the meantime, I think I'll make a bingo board and mark off squares depending on what personal information is revealed. Feel free to stop by and play anytime since this occurs almost every day.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Movie Recommendations

Since Netflix stupidly removed (most of) the Friends compatibility feature on its website, I'll start posting my movie recommendations on here. Two movies we saw recently are totally worth checking out.

First up is a movie called Hoodwinked. Hoodwinked is a little bit Shrek-ish in that it's an animated movie drawing on fairy tale characters; it's also a like The Usual Suspects or Vantage Point, in that the same mystery / story is told through flashbacks and from differing viewpoints. It's very clever and funny, and well worth the 80 minutes.

My next recommendation is a flick called Appleseed Ex Machina. The Wife occasionally gets some anime movies off of Netflix and I find most of them too long, convoluted and/or boring but this one is sheer awesomeness. The animation is amazing and the story of a bleak future populated with genetically engineered humans is gripping.

Highly, HIGHLY recommend both of these.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Reason #5

Presenting reason #5 why I love* my company...

New people starting at my work is a weird thing. Aside from the 3 managers, the rest of the department has no idea someone new is coming in. We've had 3 new people start within the last couple of months, and they just show up and are put into the department. Whenever there have been new hires at my previous employers, we'd get an e-mail a few days before saying, "Hey, Steve Johnson is going to be starting with us on Monday - he's got 6 years of experience doing ___, and let's make sure to welcome him to the team."

Nope, not here. Looking back on my first day here, I remember getting quite a few weird looks from people like, Who the f is this guy and what is he doing here? Sadly, it's a cycle that keeps on repeating itself. New people are pretty much left to fend for and establish themselves.

(* - still sarcastic)