Monday, February 28, 2011

The Jittery Feeling Means It's Working

I got sick about a week ago. And I do two things when I'm sick. I get as much sleep as I can, and I take a maximum strength nasal decongestant. And I don't trust the garbage "medicine" that's just lying out there on the medicine aisle. It's easily accessible for a reason. What you have to do is ask the pharmacist for the good stuff… Pseudoephedrine Hydrochloride. Then you have to sign for it because they're trying to stop the druggies from making it into meth. That's right... it's such a powerful nasal decongestant that people can turn it into meth. And if that isn't a good enough reason to use it, I don't know what is. It shouldn't say "Maximum Strength" unless there's a real risk in taking it.

Anyway, that's what I do when I start to get sick, and it works for me. But the problem is that I usually take one dose of medicine too many. It's always when I still have a little congestion at the tail end of the illness. And I only find out after I take the final dose that I didn't need it anymore. So that means that every time I get sick, I finish it with four to six hours of heightened focus and misguided energy. And this last week was no exception.

I took my meth-like meds with dinner at about 7:00pm like I'd done for the previous four days and then started to wind down for the night. And taking "Non-Drowsy" medication when you're not really that sick anymore is a mistake. I tried going to bed at 10:00 and realized it just wasn't gonna happen. I was just lying there, with my eyes open and a faint buzzing in my ears (which was probably coming from my brain). So I decided I'd start putting together some bunk beds we'd recently acquired (see here for that story). I just thought I could start the process and stop when I got tired. But I didn't get tired. In fact, the more I worked on them, the more I wanted to finish assembling them.

So 3.5 hours, 34 screws, and one sweat-drenched shirt later, I finished. I assembled the entire set (which took two people to disassemble). And it made me realize something; the war on drugs would be a lot harder battle if the only side effects were heightened focus and extra energy. And the ad campaigns wouldn't be as convincing.

"Just say 'NO'… unless you have a project you want to start."

"This is your brain [shows an egg]. This is your brain on drugs [shows a delicious Western Omelet]."

Friday, February 25, 2011

Nice Addition

I wrote a note to myself at work last week about a report I needed regarding some unknown product categories. And then I forgot about it for about a week (because I'm a slacker). And then I looked at my notes to see if I missed anything and I saw that note to myself. Only, instead of writing "Unknown Categories Report Needed" like a normal person, I had decided to abbreviate.  So I wrote "Unknown Cats Report - ASAP." And one of my coworkers happened to see the note on my desk when I wasn't looking and decided to add his own little note underneath it. So my note looked like this:

Unknown Cats Report - ASAP

It was pretty funny. And you can trust me on that because I know funny. I write a humor weblog on the interwebs that's followed by almost 78 people! Jealous? Yeah, that's right.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

It Worked! It Worked?

I don't catch a lot of breaks. Some people get stuff to fall in their laps without even trying. They get the first spot in the parking lot, they find a $100 bill on the sidewalk, they win stuff on the radio. I am not one of those people. Rarely does anything convenient happen to or for me. And don't get me wrong, I'm not bitter about that. I don't need a bunch of cool coincidences and good timing to be happy. It's just that I have to set up my story before I tell it.

So I mentioned recently that my Xbox 360 died. It was old and past its prime, so it was no big surprise. And then as luck would have it, Amazon went out of stock of the newest model the day mine broke. So I waited. And I found a cash back deal that would give me $15 back if I bought something on Amazon for more than $30 by February 17th. Then the 17th started getting closer. And Amazon didn't get any models in stock. And on the last day, Amazon had a deal on the smaller model (with a Kinect included). So I decided to roll the dice and buy the smaller model in an attempt to exchange or trade it later for the model I wanted (since they're the same retail price and I already have a Kinect).

And this is the weird part for me. I looked up my desired model on craigslist and texted the first person I found (good thing that part is in context), asking if they'd be willing to trade. It was a long shot, but I figured it was worth a try. And not only was he willing to trade straight up with his brand new model, but he lived less than five minutes from my house! So I met him (in a well-lit, crowded area in case he tried to abduct or murder me) and we traded Xboxes right then and there and the whole trip took 12 minutes. It could not have gone any smoother.

And I have to reiterate, this never happens for me. The first person I contact just happened to want the exact same trade I was proposing. And then he lived in the same part of town. Usually the way it works out for me is that the guy lives 150 miles away and he doesn't have what he says he has. And I get pulled over on the way home for speeding. And I get a flat tire as I pull into the driveway. So this was a nice change of pace. Now it's off to play video games for the first time in a month!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

DIBS First, Ask Questions Later

Since I'm such a fan of free stuff, I'm always on the lookout for giveaways and coupons and stuff like that. Whenever I hear someone start a sentence with, "Hey, does anybody want…" I immediately say "DIBS!" And I usually do it before they even finish their sentence. That's how I've gotten a free pool table, a Duracell induction charging station, a digital copy of Inception, and (perhaps most impressively) a Spicy Chicken Biscuit from Chick-fil-A. So when someone at our church emailed everyone last week saying they had some bunk beds they were giving away, my wife and I emailed immediately (even though she wouldn't let me respond with a simple "DIBS!").

The catch was that I had to go to their house and dismantle them, load them into my car, and unload them into my house once I got home. A small price to pay for beds that are stackable. And step 1 went smoothly. I dismantled the bed pretty quickly. But loading the bed components was a nightmare. It wasn't for lack of room. I'm very adept at packing a car with boards and beams. It was the mattresses being tied to the roof-rack that became the problem.

Now if it was just me doing it, it would have taken about three minutes. But as luck would have it, the family that gave us the beds is a family of scouts. Their son is a Boy Scout and the wife is the troop leader. And I'm fairly sure the husband can build a fire with wet pinecones and a piece of cement. The problem was that they had special knots they wanted to use to tie the mattresses down. And they spent a good 10 minutes just deciding which knot would be best for each corner. Then they took another 5 minutes on each knot, making sure the mattresses were secure enough to survive driving them through a hurricane. Even if my car was torn apart by 650 mile/hour winds, the mattresses would still be tied securely to the roof-rack.

Then I got home and had to untie each of their 12 different knots to unload everything. Now my fingers hurt and I'm not convinced they weren't messing with me.

Monday, February 21, 2011

It Can't Be Comfortable, Even If It's Velvet

I'll apologize in advance for those of you offended by the words "butt" or "wedgie." I will be using them multiple times during today's post. So if you're not comfortable reading them, please skip this post. And for those of you sticking around, let us venture on into today's story!

So I went out to eat with my family recently and we decided to try out a newly-opened Mexican restaurant in town. We weren't sure what the dress code was since it was a new place, so we took a chance and wore jeans. And after comparing our clothing with that of the people at the table next to us, we realized we were highly overdressed. I say this because the people at the table next to us were wearing artistically torn Ed Hardy shirts with trucker hats (for the guys) and crushed velvet tracksuits (for the girls). And I don't think the tracksuits were meant to be "crushed" velvet. I think they started out as velvet and were overworn to the point of crushing.

Now I'm sure some or most of you are familiar with a brand of clothing called "PINK" or "LOVE PINK" (I'm not sure on the official name, but that's what's plastered all over the outfits). And across the butt is usually the word "PINK" with the "PI" on the left and the "NK" on the right (I didn't want to say "cheek" but that's what I'm talking about when I say "left" and "right"). Now in my family, instead of talking about wedgies openly, we try to come up with creative ways to discuss these backend clothing anomalies. An example of this would be one of us saying "Her pants are so far up there, I wonder if she can taste them." Or my personal favorite… "I think her butt is hungry because it's trying to eat her pants."

Well, one particular young lady was wearing a "PINK" tracksuit and had the most colossal wedgie I've ever witnessed in my life. It was so intense, that her butt simply read "PK" instead of "PINK." Her butt had actually devoured the middle two letters of the word! And the normal ways of describing wedgies were just not enough. So we spent the rest of the meal trying to figure out a new term that would do it justice. We decided on a term and I think we're going to keep using it because it's so fun to say. So the next time you see a monumental, gravitational-pull-of-a-planet type of a wedgie, join us in referring to it as "The Very Hungry Butt-apillar." (Now say it out loud. I told you it was fun!)

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Comments On My Comment?

I saw a zebra car the other day. And I don't mean a car with a zebra paint job. I mean a zebra car. "What's the difference?" you might ask. Well, a car with a zebra paint job is just that. But a zebra car comes complete with a 6-foot tail and floppy ears.

I posted this on my Facebook status and my older brother told me he was disappointed in me because I didn't provide pictures (using the word "disowned" in his comment). And I took that as a challenge to respond with a super funny comment. You be the judge of whether or not it's funny. Here's what I wrote:

In my defense, I'm kind of an idiot. Also, the last time I took a picture of something weird I saw, it ended up being a hallucination. And the lady I mistook for a "hobbit clown" was offended.

So what do you think? Funny enough? Original enough? If not, what should I have said?

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Nepotism Schmepotism

My older brother got hired on with my employer. Which is great news. He's needed a new line of work for a while, and I think he'll be good at the new job. But I do have one complaint.

Just five minutes after my older brother walked in for his interview, he was already showing me up. I was immediately told that I'd lost my cool nickname ("Grizz") because my facial hair paled in comparison to that of my brother's. And I was bombarded with questions ("Wow, how tall is he?" and "Is he really named after the legendary Dallas Cowboys' coach?") which all translated to "Why aren't you as cool as him?"

And if that wasn't enough, he got a cooler nickname. They're gonna call him "Grizz 2.0" because he's the new, improved Grizz. So not only did I lose my nickname, but he got an improved version of it.

Okay, it wasn't really that bad. He's a likeable guy and everybody who met him agreed. And I will do my best not to pretend I got him the job. I'll try really hard not to tell him that he "owes me one." And I won't necessarily hold it over his head and make him buy me lunch (Taco Bell) or remind him what I had to do to get his resume in the right hands. I won't do that (probably).

But I will blog about it. And I think having my older brother working with me will give me some more material for this blog. But if he embarrasses me too much, I'll be forced to destroy him. Landry, if you're reading this… you've been warned. And congratulations on the job!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Proof That Inception Is Possible

When my wife and I were dating in college, I would go hang out with her and her roommates a lot. One day I had a class that was cancelled (okay, I skipped). So I showed up at their apartment and noticed that one of my wife's roommates (we'll call her "Eva") had left her keys in the door. I figured it was an accident, so I decided to mess with her. Since they weren't expecting me to be there that early in the day, I grabbed her keys and moved her car around the corner out of view. Then I waited about 10 minutes for good measure and knocked on the door.

And this is where the beauty of a good prank is… in the details. It's too easy to say, "Hey, someone just drove off in your car." And it would be too obvious. You have to let the prank recipient come to their own conclusion. It's a lot like what they did in Inception. You have to make your subject believe the idea was their own.

So as soon as "Eva" answered the door, the following exchange took place:

Me: "Hey, did I just miss your brother?"
Eva (confused): "What do you mean?"
Me: "Lloyd. Is he borrowing your car again?" (It took me ten minutes to remember his name.)
Eva (looking at her empty parking spot): "No, he wasn't here. But where's my…."

That's when "Eva" looked around the parking lot and stared into space for a moment. Then she suddenly looked at the doorknob and clapped her hand over her mouth with a gasp. So I had to keep playing my part:

Me: "What? What's wrong?"
Eva: "I left my keys in the door!"
Me (holding back a grin and acting thoroughly confused): "For Lloyd?"
Eva: "No. Oh no! Oh no!"

Then she bolted into the apartment and told her roommates that someone stole her car. And since I hadn't let either of them in on the joke, they reacted perfectly and they went into a tizzy over what might have happened to her car. I let her freak out about it for a few minutes (while everyone kept saying "oh no" and kept looking up and down the street with both hands on their heads). And as soon as she picked up the phone to call the police, I handed her the keys.

She learned a valuable lesson that day (don't live with anyone who would date me). And while I lost a friend forever, it was totally worth it. You should have seen her face!

Monday, February 14, 2011

All Is Well

Sorry for the delay. The day of my daughter's surgery was obviously very hectic. Then my wife and I had the brilliant idea to get a horrible stomach bug for three straight days as soon as we got home. So we were out of commission for a while there. I had trouble remembering who I was a few times, let alone remembering I had a blog to post to.

But anyway, the surgery went great. My little girl has a giant bright pink cast for two weeks and the doctor said everything went perfectly. She's already realized that the cast makes a great weapon against her older brother. We're just thankful that it's all over now. The pre-surgery nerves are finally gone.

But I do have to tell you that we picked the worst seats in the entire hospital right before the procedure. We inadvertently sat at the door that leads to the operating rooms. So we were eyewitnesses to every parent saying goodbye to their children right before surgery. That is not a fun place to be for three hours. And we had nowhere else to sit.

On a lighter note (literally), due to the stomach bug and no desire for food, my wife and I each lost 10 pounds last week. So all-in-all, a good week. Although I wouldn't have said it while it was happening.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011


My little girl is having surgery tomorrow morning. She injured her finger about six months ago, and it's been determined that she needs a skin graft to straighten her finger. I'll spare the details because it's just sad and unnecessary, but basically she hurt her finger and then started healing faster than most little kids do. And while that sounds really awesome and Wolverine-like, it's really bad in reality. Because it means that her scar tissue was harder and caused her finger to heal in a bent position. And that means they have to fix it in the operating room.

The hard part is that she really has no idea what's coming. She's two, so the most she can grasp is that a doctor is going to fix her finger tomorrow. We don't want to scare her with details about being sedated, and she really can't understand much about it anyway. So we feel like we're tricking her or something.

And I have to admit, I'm really freaked out by this whole thing. I'm usually pretty level-headed about things like this. But just the thought of her being put out for the procedure is scaring the daylights out of me. I don't like it, and I don't like thinking about it. And if I say that to my wife, I'll just scare her even more (which would be a bad idea). So I'll just confess it here on the blog. And she'll find out a month from now when she's bored with Facebook and decides to catch up on my posts.

So anyway, no funny story today. But at least I have a better excuse than the usual laziness. I know we have nothing to worry about, but that doesn't change the fact that I'm worried. I guess that's just part of the parenting gig.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Am I O-blog-ated To Post?

Today I'm having one of those classic blog probems. Nothing interesting or funny has happened to me. None of my older brothers has told me a funny story. But I feel like I should blog more often since I actually have followers.

So do I make up a ridiculous story that no one would believe?  Do I over-embellish a boring story just to post something? Do I post my Facebook statuses?  Or do I just call it a day and try to blog tomorrow?

What I settled on today was a glimpse into my internal struggle.  But who knows what I'll decide tomorrow.

Sidenote: It's supposed to snow tonight in my warm-climate Texas town. It's hard to think about anything else.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011


My older brother told me today that Blue Bell now makes a "Snickerdoodle" flavor. It was all I had not to leave my desk and drive straight to the grocery store the moment I heard this. If you don't know what Blue Bell is, you're missing out. It's a Texas-based ice cream company that has really good ice cream. And if you don't know what a snickerdoodle is, then you haven't lived. It's basically a cinnamon sugar cookie. But honestly, that description doesn't do it justice. A well-made snickerdoodle is more like a cookie-shaped piece of happiness, sprinkled with pure joy, and deep-fried in hugs. It's the best cookie ever.

So I found out about this ice cream. It combines my favorite cookie with my favorite ice cream. And I was excited. Then I found out that the ice cream has actual chunks of snickerdoodles mixed right in!

Now I need to mention that I have this pesky allergy to milk and ice cream. It's not lactose intolerance (because that's lame). I can have cheese and yogurt all I want. But I think it's some kind of allergy to a protein in milk. Anyway, it means I can't eat too much ice cream or drink too much milk unless I want to get sick.

So it seems that Blue Bell is trying to kill me… with awesomeness. And I'm thinking it might be worth a near-death experience just to have three bowls of this ice cream.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011


Well it finally happened. I was playing Xbox, and the video signal started going out. I started getting horizontal lines all over the screen. The reds looked orange. The blue looked green. Something was wrong. So I borrowed an extra video cable from my older brother and hoped for the best. That turned out to be false hope. My Xbox is now dead. After three years and hours upon hours of play time, my Xbox is dead.

I looked into tutorials online to fix my problem, but they involve soldering things on the motherboard (which sounds too sci-fi for me). And one of the tutorials warned of the risk of electrocution. So there's no hope that I can fix it on my own. And that means having to buy a new one.

And yes, I do need to replace it. It's my only hobby and it's what we use to watch DVDs and stream Netflix and communicate with some of my online-only friends (aka "ugly people"). So it's not just about the gaming. It's mostly about the gaming, but not all about the gaming.

Anyway, now I have two choices. I can either buy a used one for fairly cheap and risk it going out on me without a warranty, or I can buy a new one with a wonderful warranty for three times as much money. The pros and cons lists aren't helping. It's a dead heat due to the price factor. And as soon as I settle on one choice, I chicken out and start over.

But I know myself well enough to know what I'm gonna do. I have enough money in my Amazon account to buy a new one today. And look at the difference below. It's obvious I'm gonna get the sleek new black one, not the chunky boring white one. I can kid myself with pros and cons lists and argue all the good points for buying a used one. But I just know I'm gonna get the new one and blow that $300. Goodbye Amazon balance!