Saturday, May 2, 2009

It's either noon or I'm going to die

I'm just sitting here blogging and my local disaster siren went off. But it's noon. They test the sirens at noon. It works.

But what happens if a tornado hits at exactly 12:00 noon?

Just morosely curious.

How I Brought Louisville to a Stand Still

I used to own that kind of car...not the gorgeous little red one...the ugly-ass blue thing next to it. The Datsun B210. Piece of crap.

To start things off, the dealer that sold me the car had turned back the speedometer - I had proof - the idiot left a prior bill of sale in the glove compartment that had 8,000 MORE miles on it than the current odometer. God only knows how many other times it had been sold since then. But that dealer went out of business for - turning back odometers - what a shocker.

The car NEVER ran right. It had a mind of its own and would just stop running when it felt like it. On one of the days when it just felt like it, I just happened to be on the Kennedy Bridge (THE MAIN ARTERY between Indiana and Kentucky) at about 7:40 am (PEAK RUSH HOUR) and it decided to stop running. So I carefully got out, put up the hood as a symbol to NOT HIT ME! OK, no big deal. So everybody's giving me the finger as they pass by. I can take it. No cell phone back then so I had to wait for a cop to show up.

Well I'm sitting in this piece of crap, looking in the rear view mirror and I see it coming, oh shit ... all I can do is duck and wait for the impact ... WHAM-BLAM-CRUNCH-SMASH-GRIND-EERUNGGGGGGGG! Silence. Then HISSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS... More silence. Then cussing and doors slamming. Then it dawns on me, I'm not dead. They didn't even touch me! I sheepishly unfold myself from the bottom of my seat and look in my rear view mirror again. Carnage. Utter, friggin' smoking carnage. The asshole I'd seen charging up behind me had slammed on his brakes, a brand-new, big-ass Cadillac slammed into the ass of that guy and a truck slammed into him. It was a MESS. And it kind of spilled-over into the middle lane of three lanes too.

Ever seen a Cadillac Slinky? I did.

Well that stopped all three lanes of traffic on my side of the bridge. The OTHER side of the bridge stopped too because this was SO damned interesting to watch. The next thing you know, there are f**king helicopters flying overhead (I am not kidding). And in the center of ALL this HELL ON EARTH sits my ugly ass B210. And me. Untouched. With the hood up.

The cops DO show up, driving the wrong way on the bridge because, as I've said, all 6 lanes both directions are blocked. They start sorting out the mess. A stern police officer comes up to me and asks if I'm OK and what's the problem? I felt the problem was rather obvious, but I explained that my car had died and it wouldn't start. He asked if he could try. Sure, go ahead, but it won't. Of course, the little piece of shit started right up for him ... the cop gave me a look that would wither granite and told me to "Go on. You weren't involved in the accident." ... tell that to the 10,000 people sitting on the bridge wanting to kill me, sir.

Imagine for a moment, in your mind ... me getting in my ugly little blue car and driving away from it all ... leaving half of the Louisville workforce trapped on the bridge while I go my merry way. I could only imagine the news chopper above zooming in on my car as I drive away and the commentary, "There goes the asshole now ... See it on WAVE TV3 at 11."

Story's not done yet.

I felt bad. I shouldn't. I know. But I did. But what all those people that wanted to beat me to a pulp DIDN'T see was my car drive to the end of the bridge, down the ramp and stall again, coasting to a stop, this time, safely off the road.

Same cop. Hour later. Done with the bridge crap. Drives down the ramp and see's my broken down ass and gives me a ride back to Indiana with a stern suggestion to "get it fixed, Boy".

Yes, sir.

I traded the bastard in and made it someone else's problem.

They kidnapped ME this time

OK, this time it was MY 40th birthday. My wife and friends concocted this great surprise for me. All my wife would tell me was that for my birthday I was being "kidnapped" - that we were going somewhere and that I needed to take 3 days off from work. And that's all she'd tell me. I needed more info. It was October. If we went north, I needed to pack warm clothes. South - not so warm. So she had to tell me we were heading south.

The day arrived and the 5 of us left, heading south. What an exciting concept. I had no idea where or how far we were going.

10 hours later, we arrived in Destin Florida and pulled into a condominium on the beach that I'd ALWAYS wanted to rent before, but it was WAY too pricey. With the help of our friends, we rented the place for 4 nights.

Let the games begin.

It's all kind of a blur as that was back in my drinking days. That's one of the many, many dumb things I've noticed about my drinking - why spend all that money and then not be able to remember it? Stupid. Anyway, what I DO remember is:

- Finding Christmas tree lights at the grocery store (in October, what luck!) and stringing them on the condo's beach balcony so we could find the right place at night while walking the beach in a less than lucid state of mind.
- Duke's creation of the saying, "All God's creatures go good with butter."
- Calling the cops on a huge group of teenagers that had gathered in front of our condo because THEY were being drunken and disorderly. TRY explaining THAT to a cop while YOU'RE drunk.
- Dancing on the fireplace mantle wearing glow-in-the-dark Taz (Tasmanian Devil) boxer shorts, uh, on my head. True, unfortunately.

Hey, it WAS my birthday.

Friday, May 1, 2009

The Birthday/Reunion Kidnapping Story

It was my wife's 40th birthday. I'd rented a big, white, stretch limo so she and a bunch of our friends could just cruise around town having fun. We drove to the playground on the banks of the Ohio river. That was fun. We went to a fine establishment called Mick's Lounge and offered limo rides around the block to the drunks at the bar, kind of like drunk pony rides. They thought we were kidding. Until they saw the limo out front. That was fun too. Then we hatched the Grand Scheme of the evening:

... one of our friends couldn't be with us because he was with his girlfriend at her 10th High School Reunion. You know the old saying, "Never leave a man behind." So we limo'd to the formal affair, which was held at a local country club, and we, uh ... crashed the reunion. Imagine, if you will, any Chuck Norris movie in which he and a few men are dropped into enemy territory by chopper to free the prisoners of war and you've pretty much got the scenario, only make the chopper a limo ... we just barged into the dance, in blue jeans and t-shirts, found our friends and sort of ... uh ... freed them. Actually, they were bored and jumped at the chance to go cruisin'. But the preppy organizers were REALLY pissed. They tried to stop us on the way in, but we just kept going. Enghhh, screw 'em. We don't need no steenking badges. Or formal wear.

Believe it or not, my wife TOPPED that birthday present when I turned 40. But that's another story for another time. And it involves another kidnapping. Me.

Like a color blind kid with a Rubik's Cube

If you enjoyed the video below, "Why NOT to worry about swine flu" by Lee Camp, you may enjoy his stand up routine. It's a bit long - 6 minutes, but worth the wait. Also, check out his Web site at this link.

Who ya' gonna' call?

I knew I should have kept my mouth shut

I post that little ditty yesterday making fun of swine flu and today I have a sore throat, stuffy nose and nausea.

To make matters worse, I COULD go to work today, but don't think that's wise. I don't want to be the subject of the headline, "Jerk starts Swine Flu in Kentucky." But today's Derby Eve Friday here in Kentucky and regardless of how well intentioned my day off may be, there has GOT to be some amount of "OH SURE..." going on in the minds of my coworkers. Really, really bad timing.

And if I don't die before I wake - next week, Mandy and I are going to Milwaukee on business - WHOOPEE! There were two confirmed cases there yesterday.


Thursday, April 30, 2009

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

How to have fun in Vegas on 25¢ --- simple, win $10,880.85

Now that I've got your attention, yep, that's ME in 2001 in Vegas. I was going for that Saturday Night Fever look. I think I accomplished the Fever part of it but that's about all. Oh come on, you KNOW you've got pictures of yourself that make you wonder, "What the hell was I thinking with THAT hair style?"

I was actually on the job, sort of, I'd just finished up working the floor of our company's show and was on the way back to my room to change clothes before going to another meeting, but decided to drop a few quarters in the slot in the lobby. I never made it to the other meeting. They forgave me.

BANG! $10,885!!! I hit the progressive. I had to listen to an electronic rendition of "We're in the Money" for an hour as they processed my win and took the photo you see above. I don't drink but they offered me a free drink. I got iced tea and tipped the woman $20 - yeah, I'm a Vegas whale.

This was years ago. So don't come try to rob my house, it's all gone. Hell it was gone in about 30 days. You don't really know how many debts you've accumulated until you win a chunk of change.

I've never won anything like that again. I DID, however, win my latest eBay bid for an Alfred Hitchcock's "The Birds" Barbie Doll. (Thanks to Mandyland for letting me know that Bird Barbie was even out there! She's my treasure.)

This is my old car, Max

Into every car enthusiast's life, there comes a machine that you take a special liking to. Meet Max. Max was a Bad Boy. My wife named him.

Max was a mild-mannered Datsun 260-Z on the outside. But under the hood, he was pure Detroit small-block, as deep in Max's chest beat a Chevy 350 small-block engine, with an Edelbrock manifold, a 650cfm Holly carb, a 3/4 racing cam and headers. Did I know what all that stuff was and what it did? Nope. But he growled. I liked that.

These converted Z's are sometimes known as Scarabs. You know, like the black beetle in the movie The Mummy that ate anything it came in contact with? And to keep the record straight, it was a DATSUN, not a pansy-ass NISSAN.

Max was a hell of a lot of fun to take into service stations (back then we actually still had people, they're called mechanics, that worked at the stations to fix, well, the things that pulled into service stations - cars. Oh, that's right, they're not called service stations anymore, they're mini-marts. Sorry. Anyway, it was a BLAST to pull in and the mechanic would hear the lobed-racing-cam going WHUMP-WHUMP-WHUMP-WHUMP in the parking lot and of course come out to see what kind of muscle car was sitting there. And there sat a little black Datsun Z. They ALWAYS wanted to see under the hood. It would kind of go like this: "Whut the hell you doin' with that in THERE...that's a Jap car with a Detroit small block in it!? HEY LEONARD-BOB, GIT YOUR ASS OVER HERE AN' LOOKIT WHAT THIS GUY'S GOT IN THIS DAT-SUN (always pronounced dat, like cat)!!"

But as it goes with most Men-Toys, Max had to go.

I miss you buddy. Sniff. Sniff. Boo-hooooooooooooooooooooooooo!

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Houston, we have a problem ...

Golfers can be SO damned anal.