Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Who You Going To Brag To About That

It's been sunny here, which means warm afternoons. Nights are cold, though. This morning I left early, thinking I could have a little ride before work. I had insufficiently bundled up and I ended up just riding straight to the post office. I went in the break room to hang out until we could start working, and the talk turned to what a colossal jerk Sean Hannity is. You know that guy on Fox News on the Sean Hannity show, nee Hannity and Colmes. Colmes apparently got tired of being cast as the Washington Generals.
Somebody said that Keith Olderman, of MSNBC had challenged Hannity about waterboarding to stop just talking, and walk the walk, or the plank, or something. I said that Keith Olderman was a jerk, too. The other guy said, "No, he's smart, you couldn't win an argument with him."
I said, "Big deal, I can't win an argument with my wife, either." For that matter, even the dogs are sort of intransigent about some things. Actually, the dog deserves a post of his own. We're about $2000 into dog health care since Monday. I don't want to get all into it, but for the health of your pancreas, the vet recommends changing your diet if you eat a lot of red meat and the neighbor's decomposing garbage.
Anyway, by the time I started delivering mail today, it had warmed up so I was wearing my uniform shorts. Now, for the purposes of this post, you'll have to imagine someone said, "Nice legs!" I turned my ankle daintily and looked down at them, "Oh, these old things?"
It was a beautiful day for a ride after work, but I didn't really have time for that. Especially after wasting so much time sitting on the curb shaking.

Always Wear Your Helmet

I had a pretty fun post scheduled for this afternoon. I was racing home to type it because I've got a lot to do before I go to Seattle on Friday. It was mostly driven (ha ha) out of my head when I was hit by a car on my bike. My bike is mostly fine according to the REI bike mechanic who sold it to me, who is a neighbor and also a witness to the accident. Apparently, like a lot of out of control bikers, I didn't signal and turned in front of a car. He slammed on his brakes, saving my life, but not his windshield which was destroyed. I'm fine, as far as I can tell.
If I remember the rest of the post, I may post it later.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Trivia Victory Was Within Reach

In fact, the winners were sitting at the next table.
Frustratingly, we knew the answer to the final, for the money, question, (Bob Fossse) but so did the people who had scored the highest tonight. They answered it correctly, and the pot, and our interest reset to near zero.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

But Wait,

I first started having insomnia in the '50's. Back then, though, they just called it fussiness. Last night I woke up and couldn't go back to sleep. Eventually, I turned on the TV. There is a lot of stuff for sale in the small hours to desperate people.. A lot of wonderful stuff if you can believe their claims.
I'm not sure you can, however. That could just be cynicism brought on by the fact that we have been lied to a lot for a long time. WMD, hedge fund risks, Watergate, Monica-gate, whatever the next -gate was. Maybe President Clinton was giving us a glimpse at the truth when he speculated about the meaning of, "is". Maybe.
Anyway, things are not what we've been told and I'm beginning to think that The Matrix is a documentary.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Maybe I Should Read the Whole Article Before I Talk About It.

The headline in today's paper said that the bad economy Outside was starting to have a Ripple effect in Alaska. I think people are just making excuses; when times are hard here, people have always turned to Ripple.
Even though they sound related, I don't think there's a connection between that, and what I'm calling Liver's Remorse. According to the Atlantic, people not only procrastinate doing things they don't enjoy, they put off doing fun stuff, too. Then they regret not doing the work, and the play. At the end of the day, every day, they feel bad about the choices they made. They're saying that life is hard, and despair is the only option. Okay, I made up that last part. Sorry.
The economy is bad. To stimulate it the government is spending money it doesn't have. A lot of it is imported from China. I imagine in the future, the Chinese will come to our capitol to see their capital. It could be a quick trip. Money is fungible, if you're in Washington, once you've seen the yuan, you can see the Mall.
Perhaps it's also related to the economy in Anchorage, or the budget legerdemain pulled by our new boy Senator before he rode his scooter out of town, but this year the Municipality has used the "melt in place" method of snow removal. Or maybe it's a spiritual thing, God put it there, let Him pick it up. So far, it appears he put it there for a Good reason.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Help Us... Oh, Never Mind

We continue to lose at trivia. The MC took pity on us last night; as we handed in the slip of paper with our answers, he told us, "That's wrong."
"Don't worry, we've got plenty more where that came from."

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Racing to the Punch Line

I think I'm going to be on a relay team in the Fireweed. One member is faster than I am going up and down hills, and the other is faster going up. They're both faster on level ground, so basically I'm the team mascot. I just hope the big bobble head doesn't make it hard to breathe.

I just hope you thought that was funny, or funny and sad, because apparently "a successful joke implies insight, and insight, especially if it's pithy and self-explanatory, is the basic currency of a high-speed information economy."

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Those Wacky Existentialists

On my route, there's a sign in a window. It's behind a curtain, so it can only be read from the outside. It says, "No Exit".
It made me feel like Sartre's mailman.*

*Je senti comme le facteur de Sartre.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Getting Mad, Then Going Mad

We were talking about rage killings. I don't get it. Who's got that kind of energy? I can barely sustain a sulk. Compared to beating someone for so long it's like smiling versus frowning; it just takes so much more effort.
Then they told me that Criminal Minds on CBS is sort of predictable because the suspect always turns out to be a white male between 25-40. So there you go, another opportunity squandered. By now, if I get involved with the police it will probably be because I'm getting very close to fitting the profile of a guy who shuffles off in his bedroom slippers and can't remember how to get home. Luckily, I don't have any bedroom slippers, but I'm just one ill-conceived Father's Day present away from dementia.
By the way, doesn't Dementia sound like a great name for a retirement home cover band?

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

I Train Year 'Round

Today one of my customers was complaining about the slow pace of breakup this year. "I know, I'm just so ready for winter to be over," I said.
"I've been irritated for months," she said.
"Beginner," I thought.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

The Nexus Of Philology and Philately

If an envelope says "Do Not Bend" and we shred it, is there a moment during the shredding process where the paper is bent before tearing?
Do you know, by the way, that a working poet might receive as little as $15. for a poem?
That's why I didn't bother to ever submit this anywhere, I didn't want to be insulted, or offered too little money for it, but mostly I didn't want to be insulted.
You can send e-mail in instants
and it doesn't cost a dime.
It can cover a vast distance
in very little time.

So now even philatelists,
who love to see the postage,
have become real fatalists
using e-mail for the mostage.

So is there any reason
to use the Service Postal?
Is this their final season,
or at least almostal?

To us it isn't given
to pierce the future's veil.
You'll have to keep on livin'
to see how, "You've got mail."

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

I Do Know That Trivia Is From The Latin For Three Roads

At the junction of three roads, the Romans would build an inn. People meeting there would engage in small or "three road" talk. This is an example of the kind of knowledge rolling around in my head that is apparently too trivial for even a bar contest about trivia.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Oops, Not Subtle Enough

We had an election today here in Anchorage. Karen said the school district's budget is so large because when the Superintendent whines and complains, the current board buys her whatever she wants. "Man, I get that", I shouldn't have said.
Now I'm at a bar playing trivia with Leah. She brought me in as a ringer. It turns out the central feature of rings: empty space.

Monday, April 06, 2009

Don't Bother Looking Both Ways; You'll See This One Coming a Mile Away

Every day, he says, some of us get dressed, kiss our families goodbye, walk out the door and get run over by cement trucks.

I don't understand why a country that can convince us that they put a man on the moon can't find these cement trucks and stop them.
That reminds me of one of my favorite riddles from when I was a kid:
Mike: What's black and white and read all over and full of concrete?
Ike: I don't know, what?
Mike: A newspaper, I just put the concrete in to make it harder.

That reminds me of some other hoary old jokes.
Take the spoon out of the bowl.
You have a broken finger.
I'm smuggling wheelbarrows.
Don't be silly, I have three friends in the car.
And, finally, my mom's favorite joke, I don't care what it's been, I want to know what it is now.

Saturday, April 04, 2009

Yesterday, I tried to think of a post that would be more interesting than "Look at me, look at me." I thought I was on to something at the end of the day when I launched into a pretty funny rant at work, but really, it was so jargon-filled and specific to the post office that I didn't think it would translate well.
Today, I decided to link to this. If you don't believe me when I talk about debt, maybe you'll believe somebody who fools people for a living.

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Another Health Care Post

I know I've written about medicine and health care ad nauseam, but I just thought of that line.

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Medicine You Can Shake a Stick At

All last fall I raged here about the poor health care Karen got while she was in (and out, and in) the hospital. Now, judging by the care Karen's friend isn't getting in a Las Vegas hospital, it appears Karen might have gotten the best care available in the Western world.
Maybe it's time to go back to the tried and true care our ancestors used.