Quick Hits

Wow. Things are crazy as hell in my life here lately (mostly good, but “hectic” is WAY too light of a word for it). Among other things, I’ve got a major project going on at work that has a hard deadline of the end of the day on the 18th…and now my main partner on that project is sick as a dog, leaving it pretty much all on me. Woohoo! Finally last night I was thinking to myself, “Shit, I gotta blog to think about something else for a while, or I’m gonna go bonkers!”

Hell, I didn’t even have the common decency to rickroll you guys for April Fool’s Day. Or do the thing that my moto-buds and I have done for years before the rickrolling phenomenon became popular: something you might call Redrolling. (My SV people are clicking this link and cursing my name right now.)

So, I’ve been trying to take some notes when I can remember about all the things I’ve wanted to blog about. Here’s my past week or so in quick hits – a blog that’s long overdue.

***

My wife and I were flipping channels on Saturday evening and ended up watching a collegiate gymnastics meet for a few minutes.

Me: “See that guy? I’d trade upper bodies with that guy any day.”
Her: “Huh?”

“Look at his shoulders, and especially his lats.”

“Lats?”

“Yeah, his upper back. Watch him when he reaches up to grab the high bar…see how thick his upper back muscles are? I’d love to look like that.”

She looks. “Huh. No offense, but I prefer your body.”
“Aww, that’s sweet.”

A few minutes later the same gymnast is shown with his shirt off.

Her: “I changed my mind.  You can switch bodies with that guy.”

***

We’ve been trying to teach our son some fiscal responsibility (you know, so he’ll be better than us). He’s had something in mind that he’s wanted since Christmastime, and we’ve refused to buy it for him. Instead, we’ve been making him earn some money by doing little chores around the house. Well, with Easter money from grandparents, he finally had enough cash this past weekend. We had a “guys’ night” as I took him to dinner – he chose McDonald’s, of course – and I explained to an AS second-grader the concept of shopping at multiple places for a good deal, and the tricky concept of “sales tax.”

Then we went to Toys R Us, and to Wal-Mart, before finally deciding on the exact model he wanted that he could afford. And my kid is now the proud owner of a Mongoose skateboard. Actually, he’s almost the owner of two – this is a build-a-board kit, with two decks and two sets of wheels so he can interchange them. For an Aspie kid, this is awesome.

I’ve been trying to teach him some of the fundamentals of skateboarding, which really should be videotaped for my next roast or something. The amusing part being that I haven’t spent a significant amount of time on a skateboard in, oh, about 20 years, and the backwoods locale I grew up in was not exactly noted for its huge expanses of pavement even then. That and my son’s attention span/hyperfocus lead him to basically give me the “whatever, dad, less talkin’ and more thrashin'” look.

Truth be told, in a small way I wish I’d bought one for myself so I could ride with him.

***

We got the bad news from the Geek Squad at Best Buy – my wife’s laptop is toast, probably because the new power cord and battery that she bought straight from the manufacturer roasted the bastard. The guy at BB said that it looked like the motherboard and hard drive were so fried that they looked like they’d been hit by lightning. Grr.

So even though I’m still itching to do my radio show, it’ll probably have to wait just a little longer yet. Damn it. But compared to losing the laptop entirely, that’s a pretty small item on my bitch list.

***

If you think all my radio show talk is a tease…in the “calling you out on your long-overdue bullshit promises” front, Dr. Pepper has reportedly said it will give a free can of Dr. Pepper to every single person in America if Guns N’ Roses’ long-long-long-LONG-long (did I mention long?) delayed album “Chinese Democracy” is made available for sale anytime in 2008. How’s that for “We’re daring you to prove you’re not full of shit?”

***

Swimming is going well. In 3 days I’ve gotten up to where I left off two summers ago – making about 700m in 30 minutes. That’s still pretty shitty, especially when you consider that while I’m there gasping for breath between laps there are guys 20 years older than me going back and forth and back and forth without pausing…but it’s a step in the right direction.

***

I won’t go into much detail about this past weekend’s GP race at Jerez, but I just have to call attention to Colin Edwards’s awesome save in qualifying, which was made all the more interesting when Nicky Hayden made a similar save at the exact same place during the actual race. It may not look like much to you non-bikers, but trust me, folks: normal mortals like you and me would be eating gravel at 100mph if that happened.

And I don’t know of any better way to show Casey Stoner’s perfect match with the 800cc Ducati than this past weekend’s race. Stoner ran off track twice and still finished higher than teammate Melandri, who is an excellent rider in his own right but just hasn’t been able to match his style with the Ducati. Mr. Stoner, my hat’s off to you, sir.

***

I received a letter this weekend from my old graduate school, and found that they’re creating an endowed scholarship to honor my beloved mentor, who retired into emeritus faculty status about five years ago. I’m broke as hell right now, but my wife immediately said “I don’t know how, but we’re giving something to that.” This is a guy about the same age as my own father, who always encouraged everyone including myself to treat him as a colleague rather than a teacher – even though as I told him in a letter last year that I still have a hard time calling him by his first name: “I think it’s because no matter how much I think of you as a friend, I think of you as someone I look up to before that. That definitely still hasn’t changed. I’m privileged to have been able to call you, as I still do, my ‘mentor.'” I’m deeply pleased to see this being done in his lifetime. He richly deserves it.

And speaking of richly deserved honors, I also found out this week that my equally long-serving and equally beloved boss has been honored with an award from the university. We’re all thoroughly excited and proud for him. It’s been a good week for guys I look up to. And that makes for a good week for me.

***

And finally, I couldn’t resist this story.

I came home the other day to find that my wife had purtied herself up just for me – she was wearing a low-cut V-neck top, a pair of her favorite jeans, and a little bit of my favorite perfume. Delicious. And she’d pulled her hair back into two little pigtails on the back of her head.

Me, being the guy I am, I couldn’t resist.

“The pigtails are cute!”
“Thanks.”
“But if you want to really entrance me, they should be out to the side, you know, like motorcycle handlebars.”

That got a really good look.

“I thought you’d like where they were. Depending on the position, I figured they’d work just fine!”

I laughed.

She sniffed at me. “Just be glad you don’t have any hair that I could make you wear in a top knot right in the middle of the top of your head, just for good-handle purposes.”

I laughed harder. “Yep, that could be fun!”

“Not for you!”

Yep, I love’er.

6 Responses

  1. One free can? Hell they should say a free 12 pack. Cause we all know Guns n’ Roses is never coming out with that CD. Last I heard, Axl didn’t even have a record company to produce it.

    The last time I went swimming, which was awhile ago, I was just there splashing around, and I was gasping for breath. I never realized how much work it takes just treading water.

    And that sucks about the laptop. Although the Best Buy here tried to tell me there was nothing I could do for my old laptop when it wouldn’t download updates and install them. But I took it somewhere else and they said there was some viruses on the computer, they cleaned them up, and now it works fine. It’s slow as hell which is why I bought a new computer. I’m not a big fan of Best Buy.

  2. Can you explain the tricky concept of sales tax to me? Ugh. Though, I’m drowning in income taxes at present.

  3. Yeah, income tax is on our mind right now too. Admittedly not as much as yours, I’d bet!

    What I explained to my son was that “every time you buy something, there is an extra charge. So when you see something cost $38.88, it will actually cost $42.00. The extra money goes to the government, and they use it to pay policemen, build roads and schools, and other things.”

    No need to turn him cynical yet, eh?

  4. Holy crap, I didn’t know pig-tails were hot!

    Note to self: wear pig-tails to work tomorrow (I hope that fits within the dress code! ;-) )

  5. Romi: Like I told you about the flannel PJ’s – it’s all how you wear ‘em. ;)

  6. […] quoted this already on the blog…coincidentally, I’m just noticing that it was a year ago […]

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