Tuesday, September 30, 2008

The Key to It All

     Did you know that one doesn't even have to have keys to enter or drive a car anymore?  Seriously, it's true.  And I am not talking about my buddy's 1984 Chevy Camaro Z28 that had no muffler, barely a hood, and which you could unlock with a dime and start without keys.  I am talking about brand new cars, right off the lot.  I am serious!  
     Just about every car these days has one of things that you can point at it and push a button and it goes "Bleep-bloop!" and your car is unlocked.  Or your horn and lights go off for sixty-two minutes while you try to figure out how to stop it and everyone gets all pissed off.  Or maybe your trunk opens.  But the point it that most cars have that stuff.  And some cars don't even have that.  They have these little thumbprint things on the door and you just press your thumb against it and as long as the fake key thing in your purse sends a signal that it's cool and your door unlocks.  Amazing!  The key doesn't even turn in my car's door when it's locked.
     Once you get inside you don't need a key anymore either.  Pick out just about any European and most Japanese cars and you can find that they have a button one pushes to start or stop the engine.  Okay, that's a little bit unnerving if you ask me.  No wait, that's a lot unnerving to me.  I know, Company.  You need that little fake key thing again to start the car.  If the car doesn't hear that little fake key chirping in your pocket, then it won't start.  But here is my question.  What happens if the fake key stops chirping?  How do you get into your car?  How do you start it?  Someone please explain this to me.  Or just figure it out, because I doubt that anyone has figured it out yet.  But before you do that answer me this...what ever happened to the common key?
     The key is probably the oldest and most prevalent forms of security in the history of the world.  It is the most important form of security technology since the advent of the moat.  I am serious.  And keys are good enough for millions of places and things that need to be secure, why have they fallen out of favor in our cars?  My car uses a key, and it hasn't been stolen yet.  In fact, every car I have ever owned required an actual, physical key that one sticks into the ignition to work.  And none of them have ever been stolen.  Every home or apartment that I have ever lived in has required a key for access and none of them have ever been broken into.  If I had used a padlock with a key to secure my bike I wouldn't have had it stolen from behind the Worldwide Headquarters.  
    So again, what happened to the key?  Where has it gone?  I have a ring of them that I use on a daily basis.  But to get into my office at my old job I had to have someone let me in with a buzzer.  Duke and Guy have to enter a code.  Are keys not good enough to get into these places?  Every jailer since time eternal has carried keys for the cell doors, but now they buzz and slide open automatically.  That's lame.  I didn't see an exceptional amount of criminals making escapes when keys turned in the locks.
    Okay, I can hear you snickering.  "Ummm...genius, locks that use keys can be picked.  Haven't you watched Gone in 60 Seconds and seen when they couldn't start the Benz without the special key.  But they picked the locks on a bunch of other cars like it was no big deal."  I know this, I've seen it.  But here is the deal.  Locks and keys have been around since like 1300, and all we have come up with to combat them is picking at them sometimes unsuccessfully with a small set of tools, or a Swiss Army Knife if you are MacGyver.  I think that's a pretty good track record, don't you? 700 years of relative success? Come on!  So I am going to stick with my keys.  I am happy with them.  And they work.  So screw you and your push button business.  I am going to keep turning my ignition.  That's the key to it all.

Monday, September 29, 2008

News and Notes

Here are some random news and notes and thoughts from the past week or so that I am putting together for you because I didn't feel like writing a real blog for today.  Consider it the Big Dave and Company version of a clip show.  Enjoy!

1.)  
The Grass Is Not Always Greener.  I talked to the Peg-a-saurus Rex last night and she was complaining to me because she hasn't appeared on the pages of Big Dave and Company for some time.  I am not going to lie, I found this confusing as every time I write about her she yells at me for putting her in my blog.  Strange how that works.  It's okay though Peg-a-saurus Rex, I understand.  When you are used to having something in your life, or to being a part of something, and then it is absent for a while you really get a good idea on how much you liked having it around.  It works for lots of things.  Being in my blog.  Drinking beer out of bottles instead of cans.  Dealing with you annoying little brother.  Using two-ply toilet paper.  Lots of things.  So I am sorry Peg-a-saurus Rex, now you've made a cameo appearance in the blog.  You and your stuffed beaver.
2.)  Ships Passing in the Night.  My apologies to Jimmy James, who was in beautiful and scenic Iron Mountain this past weekend and whom I was unable to connect up with.  And my apologies to Friend Steven who the weekend before was in beautiful and scenic Iron Mountain and with whom I was also unable to connect up with.  How strange and sad is that?  I hope that you both had wonderful trips and can fin it in your hearts or bellies or wherever to forgive me.
3.)  New Views on Downtown.  For those of you who may not know, I have located my new Worldwide Headquarters in the downtown business district of my new town.  I thought this would be a good idea as the rent if affordable, and it is within walking distance of anywhere that I might want to go.  Sounds good, right?  Saves me on gas.  Gets my chubby self out and moving around as I plod my way to work and the post office and the store.  But what I have discovered is that people use their vehicles to act as a-holes when they don't think anyone lives in the area.  I'm serious!  They think that because they aren't in a residential neighborhood they can rev their mufflerless engines and squeal their already bald tires at all times of the day and night.  Well, news flash Richard Petty, there are people who live upstairs.  If you want to do that go in an industrial park somewhere.  I am aware now.  I hope you are too.  Because if I catch you engaging in that business outside my house I will throw water balloons filled with shaving cream out my window at your car.  And I have AMAZING aim.
4.) Bob Costas Can't Rap.  I have no evidence to support this claim, but I would be utterly shocked if it wasn't true.
5.) What's New in the Queen City?  I spent some time on Sunday laughing off my ass to an ancient episode of the smash-hit show WKRP in Cincinnati, which got me thinking: "What is wrong with me?" But I couldn't figure out the answer to that, so then I was thinking "Man, Loni Anderson was hot back in her day."  But it also got me thinking about our friends at CheeseConey.com.  Jessica has had several posts on her site about Cincinnati chili around the world, in places like Amman, Jordan and New York City.  She's also been rounding up some new and exciting recipes for all sorts of stuff.  Into your second month and still going strong CheeseConey.com!  Keep up the good work.
6.) Raising the Roof.  I was talking to David Nathaniel last week while he was in the middle of putting a new roof on his shed.  When I expressed my surprise that he was working on the project alone, he responded "All my free labor has left."  Since I was his free labor I felt sort of bad.  I actually wanted to sneak up there on my day off and paint something without him knowing, but I didn't.  Almost. But not quite.
     That's all the news and notes and random thoughts for now.  Have a wonderful day and remember: Only you can prevent forest fires!  That's a lie.  Lots of people can do that.  But you are one of them.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

"Beverly Hills Chihuahua" is Terrible

     I know that this is going to ruffle a few feathers with you out there Company, but sometimes as a public personality you have to take a firm if unpopular stance and trust that the public will still respect you enough to come back.  So that is what I am going to do here today.  Are you ready? Beverly Hills Chihuahua may be the most annoying movie in the history of the world.
     I have never even seen Beverly Hills Chihuahua but I can already tell that it is awful on a level that only fans of The Chevy Chase Show talk show can understand.  Seriously, I can tell that just by seeing the same lame commercial for it over and over and over.  Let's talk about some of the reasons why it's terrible.
    It's a terrible story.  There, that's one big part.  A Beverly Hills socialite lost in Mexico that gets saved by a run-of-the-mill everyday guy.  Let me guess, she ends up falling in love with him and when he rescues her and they live happily ever after.  That doesn't happen.  Trust me.  So I don't need to see it happen in Disney fantasy version.  I don't know who green lighted this movie but I sort of want to choke them by their necktie for making me put up with this shit.  And for Christ's sake, why make a lame story even lamer by making chihuahuas be the main characters?
     I know why they made chihuahuas the main characters.  Because people think that they are cute.  And people think that they are even cuter when they are talking.  And some people think that they are even cuter when dressed up like Hollywood celebrities.  Well those people are stupid.  Very, very stupid.  I am sorry, that is just how it has to be.  So now not only do we get to deal with an annoying storyline, but we get to deal with super annoying chihuahuas acting it out.  Great.  Oh, and one more thing.  They get to be pampered.  Because bratty people who get everything that they want regardless of cost or effort aren't annoying and sickening enough, but we have to make lame dogs be that way too now?  Fantastic.  Gag me with a f&@*$!g spoon. 
    So what else makes this movie more terrible than terrible?  How about a nice, thick layer of atrocious Disney cheese melted over the top of the whole thing?  Is that enough?  Because this movie isn't a light, crisp classic like Snow White or Bambi.  It's something straight out of the Disney sales machine and it is covered with the ooze of popular culture.  It's covered with a dose of everything that girls aged 4-24 love and think is cute, and that boys aged 4-8 think is funny.  But it's not funny, is it Company?  It's just terrible.  
    I don't think that this movie should be on any movie screen anywhere.  Maybe in prisons as a sort of extra punishment for the worst criminals known to man.  Perhaps in Dr. Kevorkian's office.  But not in your friendly local movie theatre.  I am seriously going to dark out my windows like it's a war zone when it starts playing at the theatre across the street.  And I am not going to come out of my guest room except to pee until it's all over.  Thankfully movies don't play very long over there.  And you know what?  That movie shouldn't be on my TV either.  The FCC should make some calls and every second of advertising should be pulled from the airwaves.  Because it's not like the ads are playing only on channels that target children.  Oh no, they are on National Geographic Channel, they are sponsoring sports events, they are all over.  They are probably on billboards and the sides of buildings and that should be stopped as well. 
   So let's wipe this movie off the face of the earth.  I would be so unbelievably pleased if we could just send it to DVD on the first weekend.  That would make me pleased as punch.  And it would make me right that the movie is terrible, which would make me even happier.  So help me with this. Boycott this movie.  Because if you don't you will be sorry.  Because that's an hour and a half that you will never get back.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Homecoming

     It was Homecoming this week at the friendly local high school, and I have to say that I have never experienced anything quite like it before.  I grew up in a larger city, one with three public high schools and one private.  There was a four year college there and two two year colleges.  Sometimes the four year school got to have a Homecoming parade and Homecoming festivities, and each of the high schools had their festivities, but parades were unheard of for the three high schools.
     So imagine my surprise when I walked around the corner onto my street and found a Homecoming parade in progress.  At 4:15 pm.  On a Friday afternoon.  I got there just in time to see the fire truck go by.  It wasn't red, it was one of those bright lima bean green ones, and it was blowing its horn.  I looked out the window and saw people milling around on the street.  I thought it would be packed, shoulder to shoulder.  But no.  It looked more like a summer shopping weekend with some people sitting on the curb added in for good measure.  But it was still cool.
     After the fire engine came the old fire engine.  You know, one of those ones from the late 30s or early 40s that was basically a pickup truck with some ladders attached to the side.  The kind that could moonlight as a painters truck in a pinch.  And it was doing a good job filling in all the spots where the new fire engine wasn't blowing its horn.  AH-OOO-GAH!  AH-OOO-GAH!  It was neat.  And of course there were all sorts of kids in school colors with lame signs hanging all over every vehicle.  I swear every kid that went to that school was in the parade in some way, shape, or form.  There seemed to be all sorts of floats in the parade, they were basically all snowmobile trailers with cardboard signs taped to them.  
     Next came the marching band.  Now I was in marching band in high school, so I know a thing or two about it.  And I will admit that they sounded pretty good.  And they marched okay.  But I felt really, really bad for them.  It was about eighty degrees and sunny, and they were out there in black wool uniforms.  Ouch.  But they were entertaining.  They were playing pep band tunes, which I thought was a nice change of pace.
     So they went by and then the Homecoming King and Queen went by and that's when I left.  I went and got into my car and tried to escape out the back way out of town, but something strange happened.  I came to the stop sign at the intersection one block off of the main drag.  And going across in front of me was one of those Argo vehicles that can go on land or water or through the swamp.  There were two names hanging from it and two high school kids inside of it.  I assume that they belonged to the names.  Behind them came a John Deere lawn tractor towing a little trailer with a recliner in it.  There was a boy in a football jersey driving the tractor and a girl in a t-shirt reclining in the recliner.  They were also displaying a couple of names.  I knew that these four people were on the Homecoming court.  
     I knew this not so much because I am a creepy guy who hangs around the high school, but because there is a little bit of a peculiar tradition in this town.  On Sunday, the four classes of the friendly local high school rolled out onto the main street of town and began decorating the windows of each and every building.  And on one of these windows they wrote the names of everyone in the Homecoming court.  Desperately wanting to be cool, I took the time to memorize all the names so I could throw them around like I was in that clique.  I made all that up.  But I did have to walk by that particular window every day for a week.  So I got to know the names.  And that's who was going by on the various yard care implements.
     Unfortunately, things did not end up well.  The friendly local high school lost 48-13 in the Homecoming game to the unfriendly high school from 120 miles away.  But that's okay.  Because it was still a fun homecoming week.  Or at least I assume it was.  I don't know.  I am not the creepy guy hanging around the high school, remember?

Friday, September 26, 2008

The Stupidest Idea That I Have Ever Heard

     There are some groups out there in the world who have noble designs but often miss the mark.  Greenpeace is one of them.  I am all for saving the Earth; many people are all for saving the Earth.  But driving your small wooden boat in front of a nuclear aircraft carrier is a.) not a good idea and b.) not going to help anything.  They have a noble end but their means don't work so well.  So you get the idea.  Well, possibly the worst and most laughable offender in this category is People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA).  And recently they came up with one of the dumbest ideas that I have ever heard in my life.
      PETA are dumb.  I mean, I can understand where they are coming from, and it's cool if you want to be active towards stopping animals from having to suffer at the hands of human beings.  But then you say something as stupid as this and I am not sure I want to even hear you out anymore.
      On Thursday PETA asked world-famous ice cream maker Ben & Jerry's to cease using cow's milk in their ice cream and replace it with human breast milk.  This is the dumbest idea that I have ever heard.  PETA claims that it will give cows a break from painful milking and provide customers with a healthier product.  I think that PETA is full of shit.  First of all, if milking is so painful for cows, why wouldn't it be painful for people?  Yeah, let's treat all those cows ethically but who cares about my mom.  Secondly, anyone who is a father whose child has breast fed can tell you that that milk tastes terrible.  Just about every parent has squeezed a drip or two out of that bottle that mom leave for you while she's at her class at the Learning Annex and taken a little taste.  And it's not good.  I mean, it's chocked full of nutrients (a little high in fat from what I hear) but come on.  No amount of sugar and salt and Reese's Peanut Butter Cup bits can make that into a tasty ice cream.
     Plus, let's look at it in sheer logistical terms.  Human females only have two breasts, cows have like six nipples on their udder.  Human females only lactate when they are pregnant or have just given birth, right?  Well that can only happen every nine months.  Cows get pregnant like every six minutes.  Also, La Leche League International, an organization that promotes breast feeding for babies, notes that cow's milk and human milk aren't exactly interchangeable.  "[Breast milk] is a dynamic substance that's different with each woman and each child and might have difficulty being processed into ice cream." 
     Aside from that, it's kind of gross.  Well, not really so much gross, since many of us fed exclusively on breast milk at one time, but not exactly socially acceptable. "It's kind of creepy." noted Jeff Waugh of Dayton, OH.  And it sort of is.  I know I wouldn't eat it.  And I am pretty sure that you wouldn't eat it.  And, according to the article I read neither would Jen Wahlbrink of Phoenix, AZ.  And she brings us back to the main point.  "The (breast) pumps just weren't that much fun."  And who wants to have to feel like a cow?  I mean, they don't seem to mind it all that much, but I think it's different with people.  PETA, that's why this is the stupidest idea that I have ever heard.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

"Some People are Missing A Part of Their Soul"

     "Some people are missing a part of their soul."  Yeah. Sue Too said it.  And it's true.  Some people seem to be missing that part of their soul that makes them bearable, that makes them useful, that makes them acceptable to me.  And that is awfully sad.
     Everyone in the world knows someone who has lost that part of their soul.  Or who never had it to begin with.  I am going to explain to you what that person is like, and I guarantuee you that before I even finish describing all the symptoms you will have a picture of the person's face in your head, and you will have a film strip of about 700 instances when they showed their soul-related defciency to you and everyone within a six-county radius.  Trust me.  If we were sitting in a conference room, and I was at the head of the conference table and you all were sitting down along the sides, I would totally be able to see it on your face as I roll out the description.  That's just how it goes.  So shall we get on with it?  
     So what are the symptoms of partial soulessness Dr. Big Dave?  How can we tell if we or a loved one is lacking that crucial part of our being?  Well, I will tell you.  It's pretty easy.  First of all, this person does not deal in reality.  They don't.  Well, not totally.  Kind of like they still have their soul but are missing part of it, they operate not fully in reality but sort of out on the edge of it.  Confused?  Please allow me to give you an example.  The Partial Soul is the person who doesn't realize that it doesn't really matter if their neighbor gets a pot-bellied pig, they are just absolutely opposed because someone else wants something different.  No matter that the neighbor is allergic to dogs and his wife is allergic to cats and so a pot-bellied pig allows them to still have a pet and hurts NOBODY!  Partial Soul is against it because they want it and no one else does.  
     Secondly, the Partial Soul probably looks pissed off at the world.  They don't look like they are having a bad day, or that they are angry about some event that has just occurred.  They have this different look of anger.  It's a little less acute, and it's etched more deeply.  It's not a focused rage like the guy who was just served divorce papers by his cheating wife, it's more like someone who has be practicing a slightly lower level of anger towards everything for years and years and year.  As I sit here in this train station pecking away at my keyboard I can pick out a Partial Soul from the faces that make their way past.  Okay, I made that up, I'm not in a train station.  But that doesn't matter.  If I was I could.  And that's all that matters.  The Partial Soul is easy enough to find though.  Nothing will ever please them.  Their daughter marries a doctor, but he's not a real doctor, he's just an ear, nose, and throat guy.  Congratulations! They've won a nice jackpot at the friendly local casino.  But no, they have to pay taxes.  You see what I am getting at?  Oh man, it was fun at the water park today.  But everyone's fingers are all pruned out.  Nothing is ever good.  Nothing is ever good enough.  That's the part of their soul that they are missing.
     By now you have an image floating in your head..sort of lying right behind your eyeballs.  And it's haunting you.  Because there you see your mother-in-law or your boss or that kid who sits at the end of your lunch table.  Maybe you see yourself.  But probably not.  Because Partial Souls don't realize that they are Partial Souls.  Because nothing is their fault.  I forgot about that part.  Nothing is ever even close to remotely being their fault.  Not even so much their fault as that they don't have any bit of responsibility or culpability.  That's probably closer to the truth.  If their bills didn't get paid because they spent $400 on candy cigarettes in the last month it would be because the guy down at the KwikMart charges too much for them.
     So beware of the Partial Soul.  But do not fear them.  You may, as you go on through your life have to face the Partial Soul head to head.  Do not be afraid.  They may roar and hate you in the end, but so what?  They are missing part of their soul.  And they will never, ever be happy, content, or anything even resembling either one of those.  So don't sweat it.  And don't let them get to you.  You don't need that business in your life.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Lord of the Flies

     Company, please don't come to my home anytime soon.  The Worldwide Headquarters are closed to the general public because there are things happening.  Bad thing.  Shit is going down.  If you were waiting for the elevator and the doors opened and Shit was standing inside and you asked which way the elevator was going he would say "Going Down"  Dane Cook would say that it "was on."  And it is on.  There is a war that has begun to amp up between myself, your beloved Big Dave, and some super intelligent flies that have taken up residence in my apartment.
     I don't know when they took up residence, but I think it was before I moved in.  I can remember them being here, especially in my kitchen, as long as I have been here.  But in today's society that doesn't matter.  One is no longer able to homestead or squat.  I had to tell that to a guy on the phone the other day.  Maybe someone should have told the flies that.  Because they are here and they do not want to go away.
     It started rater innocently.  There was one flying around getting all up in my business.  So when I came around and he was trying to copulate with the screen on my kitchen window or something I thought that I had found the perfect opportunity to do away with him.  So I shut the window.  I figured that if I shut him in between the window and the screen, exposed to the elements with no food or water for a day or two he would perish and I wouldn't have to listen to him buzz around anymore.  So imagine my surprise when I came around the next day and he was still alive.  But he didn't get out so I shut the window on him again, thinking he'd be dead by tomorrow.  And he was.  But there were two of his friends in there with him who weren't in there before.  I don't know how they got there or why they were there, but it was then and there that I realized that I was in deep.  It was like I had killed the sentry and the flies had called in the reinforcements.
     And the reinforcements came.  Yesterday as I tried to hang up my wet laundry I had four flies buzzing me like I was King Kong trying to climb up a building or something.  Seriously.  Now I was just going to get some fly paper and call it a day, but as the four made figure eights around my head and the rod holding my clothes succumbed to the effects of gravity I decided that I couldn't take much more.  I knew that I had to go on the offensive.  So that's what I did.
     Armed with nothing but my Menards Flier of Justice I went after the greatest pilots that the Dirty Fly Air Force had to offer.  And down they went.  One on the ceiling next to the light.  Two on the screen as he stopped for fresh air.  Three went down about an hour later while he was sitting on the wall above the sink.  He didn't even see it coming and made a smear on the wall.  At that point four went CRAZY!  C-R-A-Z-Y CRAZY!  First he dived behind the paper towel holder.  But then when he jabbed his ugly little mug out from behind and I took a swipe at him with my Menards Flier of Justice he took off.  He buzzed circles around the room and dove at my head.  HE DIVE BOMBED ME!  I have never had to combat such an intelligent insect before.  It's like the guy went to flight school somewhere or something.  Or he just hung around some people who played a lot of video games, I don't know.  But this guy had moves.  I never did kill Number Four.  He eventually set down on the light and seemed content enough to be there.  And it was a smart move.  He knew he was safe.  He likes the warmth.  He knew that I couldn't and wouldn't swipe at the light for fear of breaking it.  So I decided that I had won enough of the battles for the day and I turned off the light.
     Little bastard followed me into the bedroom.  He whizzed right in there after I went through the door and set on that light too.  I decided to leave him be.  He had earned to live another day, flying around my place looking at the dead carcasses of his buddies.  He doesn't seem to be around today but I think he might be licking his wounds in the area under the table in the breakfast nook.  I am sure he will be back.  And that's fine.  Because I will be waiting and I will win this war.  With nothing but my Menards Flier of Justice and a little fly paper.  Oh, and my drop-dead killer instinct.  Can't forget that.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

My Giant Zucchini

     Well Company, we all know that I can't make pancakes.  And many of you know that I am afraid to cook with eggplant.  But one thing that I like and I can cook well with is zucchini.  When I was a kid and I lived at home with my parents, so you know that it's WAY back in the day, my mom and dad always had a garden in the backyard.  They put the same things in every year: peas, green beans, carrots, tomatoes, kohlrabi, the asparagus re-seeded itself year after year, radishes went at the end of the flower garden on the side of the house, outside the fence.  That's how it went.  Well one year Mom decided that she was going to plant zucchini.  And bless her heart for it, because she makes an amazing zucchini bread.  But she wasn't too terribly familiar with the growing aspects of the zucchini plant.  So she was blissfully unaware that one really only needs a hill or two to load a family of four with more than enough zucchini as she planted roughly ten.  Yeah, that's five times too much AT BEST!  So needless to say that we had way more zucchini than we could ever or would ever care to eat.  
     But I will give credit to my mom.  She went out and got about as creative as one can with zucchini.  Breads, muffins, just about anything baked.  Plus fried zucchini with bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese.  Yum.  Have that and a little sweet corn and that is summer dinner at its finest.  So I have a special love of zucchini and I have come to add it in lots of dishes that one wouldn't add them in.  I love it in cacciatore.  Love it in spaghetti or baked ziti.  It's good in salads and stir fry and a million other things.  But even I am going to be stretching things because today I received two of the largest zucchini that I have ever seen in my life.
     Seriously, I don't even know how to begin dealing with these things.  I had to wedge these two things into my half-day pack backpack because I couldn't fit them any other way.  I tried to put them in the exposed flap on the back of my backpack that I use to hold my sweatshirts, tents, etc. and they wouldn't even fit in there.  Seriously, as I walked home the stitches on my backpack were straining with all their might trying to contain these things.  I went into the post office and they issued my zucchini their own ZIP Code.  It's nuts. 
     I don't even know how to store these things.  I have never really had to store them before because usually I receive a zucchini and I use it up making one thing.  But these things...I don't know.  They are gigantic.  I have a recipe for a dish that will use up one zucchini, but that will last me as leftovers for like three months.  I was thinking about making it for the kids at Camp Ramah but I think that they're gone and I am not sure it's kosher anyway.  But that still leaves me with the other one.  What am I to do with it?  I can't eat that much fried zucchini.  I can't afford to make that much cacciatore.  What the hell am I supposed to do?  I don't like salad that much either, and if I ate that much I would become a rabbit anyway.  And nobody wants that.  So what the hell am I to do.
     So here is the deal.  I am asking you, Company, for any ideas or recipes as to what I can do with an eleventy billion pound zucchini.  Seriously, this thing is longer than my forearm and weighs about as much as David Nathaniel's youngest daughter.  So help me make it into something tasty.  I might even share.  But if you give me bad ideas, maybe I won't.

Monday, September 22, 2008

I Am Constantly Being Defeated by Aunt Jamima: Update

     Well, I made my delicious pancakes.  Except that they were not delicious.  I bought the cheap mix this time and, quite frankly, it didn't taste right.  A little bland.  It probably didn't help that they were all just a touch undercooked because, as usual I didn't have the pan at the right temperature.  On the plus side, that totally validates the hard work done by my friends at Oregon State University.  Even though I failed miserably I do have to say thank you to everyone for all the nice suggestions and helpful hints.  Thanks guys!

I Am Constantly Being Defeated by Aunt Jamima

     Company, I want you to sit down.  Find a chair, couch, ledge, bed, yoga mat, anything that you can sit down on.  If you are driving in your car as you read this then, well, then I am impressed.  And appalled.  First of all I am impressed that you are able to read this while you are driving.  But I am appalled that you are being so unsafe.  Come on Company, you are better than that.  Anyway, regardless of the safety of your present situation, if you are reading this while you are driving you should definitely pull over and stop the car.  Because what I am about to tell you is going to make you puke.  Yes Company, you are about to vomit all over yourself, or maybe the person in front of you if you are on the bus.  If you are in an elevator or courtroom you will vomit on the person next to you.    So you should probably go put on a bib before I tell you my shocking and sad news.  Also, get one of those portable defibrillators in case you have a heart attack.  You know what, I have a better idea.  Whatever you are doing, drop it and go to the hospital.  Walk into the emergency room and sit down in the waiting area so that help is at hand before you read the next sentence.

    I cannot make pancakes.

    There, I've said it.  That's my shocking secret.  I can't make pancakes.  Actually I can make pancakes, but I can never make pancakes successfully.  And I am ashamed of it.  Along with the fact that I own Contraband: The Best of Men at Work, it is one of the most abhorrent things about me.  I am sort of nervous to publish either of those facts in the public sphere because I may never have a girlfriend again.  If I was a single lady out there in the world I wouldn't date me knowing that I can't make pancakes and own a CD with the song "Man With Two Hearts."  But it's true, and I guess that I have nothing to hide, so I there it is.  Out in the open.  I can't make pancakes.  Let's see if we can figure out why.
    First of all, I am lazy.  I never make pancakes from scratch.  I buy the box of mix that you can use to make pancakes, waffles, biscuits, and an array of other things.  You could probably also make crepes with it too, I don't know.  I know, I shouldn't use that stuff.  No product, especially a food product, should be so versatile.  But the point is that I am lazy and I don't want to make the batter from scratch.  And the point that comes from that point is that I couldn't have really messed up the batter.  It's not like I could have put in too much flour or baking something...no.  All I have to do is add water.  It's true.  Please allow me quote you directions DIRECTLY FROM THE BOX:
     Place mix and water in bowl.  Stir until lumps break up.  Pour 1/4 cup batter for each pancake onto hot griddle.  Turn pancakes when edges look cooked.  Turn only once.
     Yeah, the directions are that easy.  And there is a helpful chart that shows how much water to add to how much mix to make how many pancakes.  Simple as pie, which is actually fairly complicated, but it's really easy anyway.  So the bottom line is that even a retarded retard could mix it right.  So I don't think that that is why I can't make pancakes.
     Yet I still seem to mess it up.  No matter how I adjust the amount of water it never seems to be the right consistency.  It's always seemingly too thin and it runs all over the place.  If I make it thick is still runs all over the place.  It won't sit there nicely in the pan or on the griddle like it always does on TV.  Oh, and like it always does in real life when anyone halfway competent other than me makes them.  Which leads me to...
     The pan.  Not the pan so much as the heat under it.  Or lack of heat under it.  I am not sure which.  I do the water thing, where I flick a little water from my fingers onto the pan so I can watch it boil off immediately.  That means that the pan is ready.  Or so I thought.  But the pan always seems to be too cold.  So every once in a while I amp up the heat and then I manage to get a pancake that is burned on one said and undone on the other.  What the hell's with that?  Oh, and I can hear you saying "Hey, dumbass, pick a heat that is in the middle."  Well my friend, I hate to break it you, but I have already thought of that.  The thing about that is, Company, that finding that middle heat is a physical impossibility.  I have had my friends in the physics department at Oregon State University studying the matter and they have yet to find a happy medium.  So I am going to go out on a limb and say that it's impossible.  Foxy Roxy, Guy H, Melanie Stevenson of Huntsville, AL, all you people who can make pancakes successfully, I think that you are lying.  My physics friends said that it was impossible.  Unless Ronco has come out with some appliance that everyone knows about but me.
     So anyway, I am going to attempt to make pancakes for dinner tonight.  Because they sound good.  I know that I can never make them successful, so I don't go into this worrying too much or expecting a miracle.  And I know that in the end whatever I make will be edible when drenched in butter and syrup.  And one would think that I will eventually get it right.  I mean, the odds say that I have to, right?  You know, if you put a million monkeys at a million typewriters and eventually you will get Shakespeare, right?  I guess I'd better get cooking.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

The Past is Not for Me

     Well Company, I had a really great idea for a blog for you spinning around in my head, rattling around and bugging me all day long.  And it really was great.  I remember I could sum it up in a one word title, and that it was going to be rather lengthy, and that it would be pretty hilarious.  But that is all that I remember.  So you get the following instead:

     Okay Company, I have come to a realization.  After watching two movies, one set in the past, Apollo 13, and one made in the past, Anatomy of a Murder, I have decided that having to have lived in the past must have been really, really, really boring.
     Now, before my older reader gets his feathers all ruffled, let's just start out by saying that I am a product of this time.  I grew up with the television.  I grew quickly into computer during my teens.  I am used to seeing a billboard every 138" along every major highway in every state.  I walk around with a telephone in my pocket like it's no big deal.  Oh, and by the way, that phone can get on the internet, keep my phone book at my fingertips, play music, and take pictures.  AND it will keep my date book and calendar too if I ask it to.  The point of all this is that I am a product of this age and therefore have the attention span of a kindergardener who just raided the pack of Pixy Sticks in Ms. Hoover's desk.  So yeah, keep that in mind before you get all upset.
      Apollo 13 wasn't bad.  I mean, they have Corvettes and CBS and all that jazz.  But that's all they had.  Three channels?  Shoot me now.  I am sorry, I know that Helion would call me a spoiled American, and for sure I am, but I am just not sure that I couple cope with that at this point.  Where I live we only get two, and that drove me nuts until the cable guy rode in with his white truck like it was some sort of white stallion and he was here to save my from my ivory tower of two-channel imprisonment.  I just couldn't handle it.  So to have to deal with that would drive me into oncoming traffic.  And in Anatomy of a Murder there wasn't a TV to be seen.  Granted, it was a courtroom drama set in an remote, rural area, but still.  Come on.  They sat around talking about court cases while playing the piano and drinking coffee for fun.  That is no way to live.  I know that extreme stress can cause heart conditions but I think that if I had to be subjected to that as my idea of fun day after say after day I would get a heart condition from sheer, unadulterated boredom.
     Second of all, everyone dressed WAY too fancy while going about their everyday lives back in those times.  I don't know about you, Company, but when I come home from work every day, off comes the pants and button-up shit and on goes the gym shorts and t-shirt.  I don't know if I could sit around on the davenport in my slacks all day long.  Seriously.  I mean, the guy in Anatomy of a Murder makes a late night call on a woman at her home, and she comes downstairs wearing a dress?  That's ridiculous.  And she came down quick too, which means that she had the presence of mind to just throw on a dress, or that she was wearing one while hanging around alone in her room.  And THAT is both strange and slightly unacceptable.
     The thing though that I think really got me thinking this way was the jokes in these movies.  I don't know if I could live in a time where humor WASN'T FUNNY!  There, I said it.  Listen, I know that things are a much racier today, and that society is slipping into some sort of moral sewer or whatever, but I find jokes today to be funny.  The jokes that they were making in this movie were just sad.  I mean, I guess I sort of long, in a quaint way, for a time when the pun was the top of the comedy mountain, and when a twist of words was resque enough that you could only use it in that bar.  When things weren't any more innocent, they just were when there were other people around, but I am sorry I think that that would have been boring as all hell. 
     Now granted, maybe things aren't as different now as they were then.  In Anatomy of a Murder there was a big soliloquy about the word panties and how shocking it would be and how no snickering or gasping would be allowed when that word was used in the courtroom.  And last week Duke found out about a whale tail and what it was and was shocked and amazed.  So at least underwear still makes people get into an uproar.  And we still do enjoy a nice pun now and again.  I suppose then that you could say that all those old jokes and terribly lame puns lie at the bottom of all the raunch that we indulge in today.  Those innocent and forced comedy tidbits make the underpinnings of what Dave Chappelle puts on TV today.  So I shouldn't have any scorn towards that time, which is good because I don't, but I am sorry.  It's just not for me.  So sorry.  But enjoy your lame jokes.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Let's Get Real

     Hey you!  Yeah you.  I just saw you go by my apartment in your Volvo with rap music blaring.  Yeah, don't think I didn't.  And don't try to weasel out of it either.  Because I heard the lame rap music coming down the street and I looked outside expecting to find what you always find when you hear that in rural northern Wisconsin..a shitty 1989 Ford Probe.  But that's not what I saw.  I saw you almost brand new, shiny, beige Volvo.  And I know that that is where the rap music was coming from because that was the only car on the street at the time.  Well, I hate to break it to you and your Swedish engineering, but nobody in the hood drives a Volvo.  That's just a fact of life.  I know, Volvos are nice cars.  Luxurious.  Safe.  Expensive.  But people in the hood get much better cars, usually Cadillacs or Lincolns or maybe a Benz.  But not a Volvo.  Even once they have kids they don't get a Volvo.  So, blaring rap music from the factory speakers of a Volvo doesn't scream "HOOD!"  It screams "I'm from suburban Chicago and my parents have money."  Sorry to rain on your parade.  

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Little Jeffy is A Dick

     Company, I am here with some shocking news.  Well, I lied.  It's not really shocking at all.  But I am here to tell you that Little Jeffy is a dick.  And I am going to enter into evidence as Exhibit 1 a story about the time we went camping.
     Yeah, I went camping with Little Jeffy.  I know, that was a bad decision on my part.  But he likes camping and I like camping and we both had the same days off so off we went.  We went to a place called Big Eric's Bridge, where there is a nice State Forest campground with some pit toilets and a hand pump for water.  I am not going to lie, I picked it because it's pretty far off the beaten path, and people often piss me off, so I figured that it would be mostly empty.  And it was.  So that was good.
     We got there on the first night and set up camp.  It was nothing special as far as camps go, but it had all the prerequisites, like a tent, a fire, a cooler.  Little Jeffy had this weird hammock-tent thing that he strung up between two trees, no big deal.  Everything was going okay, we got the fire going and were preparing some dinner.  I decided to head off to the bathroom and that's when it started.
     I was pelted maliciously with gravel.  It was being thrown at me from behind with reckless abandon by who else?  That dick Little Jeffy.  I was struck across the shoulder and the back of my head with billions of tiny projectiles like I was hit with bird shot or something.  Thank God I was wearing my hooded sweatshirt and had the hood up at the time.  Otherwise I may have been killed.  So anyway, I was hit in the shoulder, and it spun me around in slow motion, with the force of the shot spinning me around so I went twirling to the ground like a WWII-era fighter plane that was hit during a dogfight over the South Pacific.  Okay, that never really happened.  But I may as well have.  Because I was a victim.
     I shrugged it off though.  I am tough.  I had my hood up.  I went to the bathroom and came back and finished up the night's festivities.  I shrugged it off like it was no big deal, even though a lesser man would have finished his night lying in the dirt weeping and begging someone to tell his wife that he loves her.  Yeah, I don't go in for that stuff unless there is gunfire or a deep stab wound involved.  Or maybe an explosion of some sort.  But not for some stones.  What happened to me the next day is enough to make anyone beg for someone to send their last letters home as they lay dying in a field of spring wheat.
    Day Two dawned and I decided that I wanted to go swimming.  One problem: although a river goes by Big Eric's Bridge there is no beach.  There isn't even a swimming hole.  All there is is a series of small rapids and waterfalls.  Not even big enough to take a kayak or raft through.  But just perfect for climbing through and lying around in like a hippo in the African savanna.  So that is what I set out to do.  But Little Jeffy wasn't all about that.  I don't think he likes to get wet because he never goes in the water and he rarely showers.  So I was frolicking in the water and he was wandering around on the shore.  Eventually I sat down, cross-legged like Buddha, in the middle of a small pool.  It was probably twenty yards across from bank to bank, nothing too big.  As I was playing innocently in the shallow pool, Little Jeffy, true to form, decided to start throwing rocks at me again.  But this time no gravel.  No handfulls of bird shot.  He was throwing large stones at me.  Not boulders or anything, but stones about an inch or two across.  
     I hate to do it but I have to give the guy some credit.  He was throwing deadly projectiles at me but he was taking pains not to hit me.  He was throwing them across my proverbial bow but missing wide right or way over my head.  I am thinking he didn't want to hurt me.  Or maybe he wanted to confuse me.  Or maybe he just has shitty aim, I don't know.  But he wasn't hitting me.  So I am yelling at him, and staring at him, and he takes a rock, rears back, and tosses it over my head.
     This is where it gets interesting.  The rock travels over my head, but I think Little Jeffy threw it a little harder than he realized and it made it all the way across the river.  And across the river was a big boulder.  Some of you, yes, you can see where this is going.  So the rock goes way over my head, and I don't even turn to watch it's flight.  It hits off the boulder, comes back, and cracks me in the back of the head.  Yeah, he tried to take me out with a deflected projectile.  
     That's not even the best part.  Later, as we relived the horrifying attack on my person, Little Jeffy told me that as he watched the rock fly though the air and strike off the boulder he thought "Oh man, that's going to hit him."  Yet he did nothing about it!  No warning.  Not a head's up.  Not a "FORE!"  Not even a sort of straining or sympathetic moaning sound.  NOTHING!  He just let me get hit in the head with a rock.  
    So there I sit, stunned, possibly with a concussion.  And Little Jeffy was just laughing.  He may have even laughed so hard that he peed his pants.  I don't know, you'd have to check with him.  But he was laughing pretty hard.  I, of course, was stunned.  I just kept holding the back of my head and saying, in an incredulous voice, "You hit me in the head.  You hit me in the head with a rock."  And he just laughed.  His dog Kit, who is also a dick, just continued to sniff the river bank.  Well I had to do something to get him back, right?
     Well, there wasn't much that I could do.  I admit, looking back, what had happened on the river that day was pretty awesome.  Even though I was a victim on a scale that has never been seen since.  But I knew that I had to do something.  All I could come up with was, as he was standing there laughing, I pulled my hand away from my head, looked at it, and said "I'm bleeding."
     I wasn't bleeding.  But that dick Little Jeffy stopped laughing immediately.  The look on his face was priceless.  "You are?"  He was suddenly concerned.  So I fessed up that no, I wasn't bleeding.  I know, that wasn't as awesome as him hitting me in the back of the head with a rock, but it was all I had to offer at that moment.  And it made me get back to evening things up.  
     Well, the rest of the trip went well.  I actually had a good time camping with Little Jeffy.  That's how you know for sure that I had a concussion.  Just kidding.  But, for as much fun as we had, I didn't let him forget how he maimed me for the rest of the time.  And we still don't forget to this very day.  Because, well, it WAS kind of cool.  And of course because Little Jeffy is a dick.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Wordplay: Update

     As that dickface Little Jeffy was kind enough to point out, a cooper makes barrels and a hooper merely makes the round metal rings that go around them.  Sorry.  I don't care though, I still like both of those words.

Wordplay

Here are some words that I like:

Hurricane:  I am a big fan of this word.  I think that it looks cool.  I think that it sounds cool.  It rolls off the tongue wonderfully.  Plus, hurricanes don't come where I live so I think that they are neat.

Facsimile:  I like this word too.  Most people just say fax, and that's fine.  I use fax.  But it's always eye-catching to see this word brought out and used.  It's kind of like the good china that is in the cabinet in the dining room at your mom's house.  You know it's a special occasion when it gets brought out.  I just like it all around.

Moxie:  I like this word and I don't know why.  Maybe I have a hard on for that hard "c" sound that is in all the words I like or something, but I like this word.  It's cute.  I could seriously look at this word all day long.  I might get tired of saying it but I could look at it that's for sure.  If there were a product called Moxie I would buy it just to see that word on my shelf.  In fact, I am sure that there already is a product called Moxie I am just too lazy to go out and find out what it is.  But I can tell you this: I am seriously considering buying it.

Hooper:  This is a common name, like Mr. Hooper from Three's Company but it's also an occupation.  A hooper is someone who makes barrels.  I love everything about this.  The look of the word.  The sound of it.  And what it means.  And all-around winner.

There was another word that I REALLY, REALLY LIKE that I was going to put here but I forgot what it was sometime between when I decided that I REALLY, REALLY LIKED it when I actually wrote this.  My apologies.

Here are some words that I hate:

Enjoy:  Don't get me wrong, I am all for the concept.  But I have the word.  I have the way it sounds.  I hate the way it rolls off my tongue.  I hate to use it.  But there aren't a lot of synonyms for it so I am stuck using it.  And that pisses me off

Guesstimate:  This isn't even a word.  I don't know who came up with this pseudo-word but honestly, it's fake.  Estimate works just fine.  Guess works just fine.  You could always say that you are going to make an educated guess.  That is nice and classy.  Basically what I am saying is that there is no reason for anyone to ever use this word ever again.

Donut:  I LOVE DONUTS.  Anyone who has ever actually seen me will attest to that.  But I am not a fan of this word.  Doughnut I think it okay, but donut is like a contraction gone all wrong.  It just feels like there should be an apostrophe in there somewhere and that it is somehow related to the phrase "do not," not to delicious fried or baked rings of dough with frosting or glaze.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Screw You Dewey. You and Your Decimal System

     Well Company, I finally decided that I was tired of looking at all the boxes sitting around in my living room, which is also my dining room, so I decided that it was finally time to put my many, many books into my bookshelves.  I guess that I owed it to Mikey and David Nathaniel because they had to carry them all up all of those stairs, and to Duke and Dingo because the four of them carried them all down the old ones...but that's not why I did it.  I did it because I was tired of things being so unsettled.  But I also loathed having to unload them.  Don't get me wrong, I love my little personal library.  But for some reason I just didn't want to deal with it.  So I decided to just power through it.  I went at it like a dog humping an elderly ladies leg for like a half hour until it was done.  It went really quickly, even though it usually takes like four hours.  But I think that that is because I didn't organize them in any way, shape, or form.  And I didn't do that because Melvil Dewey is a dick.
     Yeah, that's right.  I said it.  I went there.  He's a dick.  I am not going to arrange my books in a certain way just because an American librarian and educator who has been dead for over eighty years says that I should.  I threw them in there all willy-nilly.  Because I want people to see all the crazy books that I have.  You know, the ones that people have made fun of me for reading for years?  Yeah, I want people to see those.  Because they make me seem smart.  They make me seem like I know things.  They make me seem like I might have a clue as to what is going on around me.  Even when none of those things are true.  So if someone wants to find something on my bookshelves I want them to have to look through the shelves and see what is available.  Maybe they are going to be looking for my book about the history of the pencil (I don't know why, that book was terrible) and they discover a book about how to repair steam engines (yeah, I have one of those, don't ask me why).  Or maybe they lose an afternoon paging through the Far Side books.
     Okay Company, I can hear you and your objections getting all up in arms over there.  Settle down.  I know that my system won't work in a big library.  I know that you can't roam the stacks at The Ralph Brown Draughon Library at Auburn University looking for your book about paper airplanes.  That would take hours, maybe days.  You would be absent from your job at Brand X and they will come to your apartment and your roommate will not have seen you for like four days because she's been at her boyfriend's most of the time, and they will send out a search party.  All sorts of community members and police and campus people will go door to door searching for you and really you will be in the library searching for camping books to make a dwelling out of to survive the winter.  Yeah, that is what would happen.  But that still doesn't mean that we need the Dewey Decimal System.
     My main problem with the Dewey and his system of decimals is that it uses numbers.  Think about it for a minute.  You are at the library.  Looking for books.  Which are filled with letters.  Letters and words and the occasional picture.  So you are in an alphabet frame of mind and suddenly they are throwing numbers your way?  What's with that?  If I wanted to deal with numbers I wouldn't be at the library.  I'd be at the calculator store.  Or the bank.  It's basically the reverse of the problem I always had with handing out paychecks.  Seriously, when I am in reading mode, thinking A B C D E F G and you throw a 4 at me, I am totally lost.  See what that did to you right there?  I saw you and your reading come to a crashing halt.  I saw you slam on the brakes and then they lock up and you are skidding out of control on the black ice of Arabic numbers and then jolt back into line when you hit the dry pavement, which in this case is the words.  Yeah, once you get past the four all is well.  But then you hit that number all hell breaks loose.  That's why I usually spell them out.  
     Seriously Melvil Dewey, why numbers?  Why couldn't you have just done it like at the store.  With acres of shelves and big signs showing what section is which.  Instead of Housewares and Junior Miss the big hanging signs would say different topics, like Whales or Cartooning.  They could do it like your friendly local grocery store does it.  And I don't know if you've taken the time to notice, but all those signs have words on them.  Holy shit!  Words!  That's like a warm up for all the reading that you are about to do.  That helps you read more.  That means you will check out more books.  And that means more business for the library.  I fail to see the problem here.  I need to talk to someone in the library community about this.
     So go suck it Melvil Dewey.  You and your decimal system have no place in my life.  In fact, I might stop by my friendly local library on my way to work tomorrow morning to talk to them about my letter-based system of classification.  Actually, that library is pretty small.  Maybe I will talk to them about my random system of non-classification.  That would work pretty well there I think.  But something has got to change.  There is no room in the library system for Melvil Dewey and his system of decimals.  No room in the library, and no room on my shelves.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Why Can't I Be a Blogger Blog of Note?

     For those of you who don't know, I am a devoted follower of Blogger's Blogs of Note.  Not so much because I am interested in the blogs that they highlight or the quality writing and entertainment contained within, but because I am terribly interested in whether or not I am a Blog of Note.  So far I have not been.  And I can not understand how that can be.
     Seriously, this is the best blog for which I have ever written.  See, it even uses proper English from time to time.  I don't understand.  I really don't.  They used to put out the list of Blogs of Note every month, and every month or so I would go check things out and I would never see Big Dave and Company on the list.  Well, then they changed things around and now they update it every weekday.  Apparently the Blogs of Note guy doesn't do Saturday or Sunday.  I do.  That's another reason why I should be a Blog of Note.  Wait!  I mean, the guy who does Blogs of Note deserves weekends off.  He is a talented and smart individual who should be allowed to work from home.  Better?  I don't want to bite the hand that I want to feed me before it is even extended.  So anyway, now they update the list almost daily, and I am still not on it.  So let's take a closer look and see what it takes to be one of Bloggers Blogs of Note, shall we?
     A Blogger Account.  Well, I seem to be taken care of in this area.  Those of you who have been here since day one, like my first celebrity endorsement Guy H of Sand River, MI or the wildly popular Peg-a-saurus Rex will remember when my web address was http://bigdaveandcompany.blogspot.com.  See?  It's right in there.  Well, not really.  But when Blogger hosts your stuff they host it at blogspot.com.  It's the truth.  I don't have the time or energy to make this stuff up.  It's true.  You can actually probably put the above address in and still get to me.  Try it.  If it doesn't work assume that you messed it up somehow, retard.
     Don't make fun of your readers.  Okay, maybe I am not so hot on that one.  But you know that usually I am a big fan of you Company.  In fact, I am borderline in love with you.  I have written multiple posts about how great you are.  In some of them I seem like I am drunk.  And that's because I am most of the time when I write about my readers.  I am punch drunk with love and gratitude and compliments.  Yeah, how do you feel about that, Company?  Hell, I even write your collective name with a capital letter.  Lap of luxury for you here.  That's all I have to say.
     Fresh, new content on a regular basis.  Okay Company, whether you love or hate me you have to admit that I blow away the competition in this area.  I mean, okay, sometimes it's not so fresh, but it's always new.  And I rarely miss a day.  I challenge you to go through all those other lame Blogs of Note and see if there are any others that post as often as I do.  And my posts are long.  I know that most people are busy and don't have time to write Nordic epic poems the way I do for you, but you have to give me that even if I am not always giving you quality I am definitely giving you quantity.  
     Quality writing.  Yeah...can we just skip over this one?  I know that my posts are not always that great.  I mean, I know that most of my friends are teachers.  But only one is an English teacher.  And she is teaching Spanish right now.  So I don't really have too much in the way of editorial pressure.  In fact, my entire staff of editors here at Big Dave and Company are actually monkeys.  They are wearing button-up shirts, suspenders, and those see-through green visors that accountants always wore back in the day.  Yeah, that's my editorial staff.  They don't cost very much, so they work very well for me.  I send my unpaid interns in to feed them once a week, what's it to you?  But in all seriousness, I know that my spelling and grammar aren't always the best, and that I often change from first person to third person, sometimes within the same sentence, but I put in lots of pictures to make up for it.  Sometimes I put in pictures of pictures.  Doesn't that count for something?
     Family friendly activities.  What's more family friendly than hangman and safety tips from a police official?  Well, maybe not hangman if one of your relatives has been lynched...
     Open access.  I think that this one is important.  There are lots of Blogs of Note that aren't set for everyone to see.  I don't agree with that one bit.  I mean, if you aren't willing to have to world hear what you have to say, then how can you be noteworthy?  Okay, it's fine if the good people at Blogger can read what you have to say, but what good is it if I can't?  Or Chevy Orange can't?  Or Mark Schengel of Mill Valley, CA can't?  It doesn't make sense.  But I guess that I don't get a say.
     Luck.  Yeah, I think that this is what I am missing.  I looked into it and there doesn't seem to be much of a rhyme or reason to the Blogs of Note.  In August there were a lot of Olympic-themed blogs but that is to be expected.  Other than that I can't really tell.  I think that it is just a random luck thing.  Which is fine.  But it shouldn't be.  I know that I am a Blog of Note to all my dedicated readers, and that warms my heart.  But I am trying to get famous here folks.  And our friends at Fake Interviews with Real Celebrities experienced amazing results when they were named a Blog of Note in June of 2008.  I don't know, maybe I am just not popular enough.  Maybe I am not good enough.  But I don't think that either of those are true.  I know that I am good.  I know that I am dedicated.  And I know that you will always love me.  But why can't Blogger?  I don't think that I'm asking too much, am I?  All I want is the rampant popularity that comes with beings a Blogger Blog of Note.  And I want it ten minutes ago.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

If You Are Going to Steal Something, At Least Steal Something Nice

     Well Company, I just got back from finishing up with the cleaning of my old Worldwide Headquarters.  It was strange and odd and a little wrong to be leaving The Attic (that what we named it) with the place totally empty.  It was downright poignant.  Kind of like the last episode of The Fresh Prince of Bel Air when the family moves to New York and Will stays and he is the last one out of the house and he sort of looks around with this sad-sack look on his face and he just silently flips off the light.  Except it was pouring outside.  And I was carrying a vacuum.  And I was all pissed off.  But you know, other than that it was exactly the same. 
     And I had a good time back in Michigan this weekend.  It was great to see everyone, as usual, and to be honest I was going to write all about my weekend up there tonight, but then when I got back to my new Worldwide Headquarters I noticed something.  Right after I poured the water out of my kayak, The Miles Standish, I looked around and noticed that something was conspicuously missing from the courtyard behind my building. 
     While I was away someone had been kind enough to liberate me from my bicycle.  Yeah, that's right.  Someone stole it.  In a town of 1500 people, where everybody knows each other, SOMEONE TOOK MY BIKE!  I bet it was that dick Mike Evanson.  I am just kidding, Mike.  But someone did take it.  I suppose that it was my fault because I didn't lock it up, but you know what?  I just moved.  The lock and the chain were packed up, probably under some books.  So I thought it would be safe under the light near the other unlocked bikes.  I guess not.
     No one is outraged by this.  I took the time to watch the local news and the main story was that there are new laws affecting the small wineries that dot the area.  Not a word about my bike.  I went down to my friendly local grocery store and checked out some milk cartons and you know what?  Not a picture of my bike on any of them.  I did some research and traced the lack of local concern back to the fact that I failed to report this incident.  I didn't report it for three main reasons.  1.) I don't care a whole lot.  2.)  How are they going to find it?  Just go out looking for a random bicycle?  Am I supposed to tell them that it was a City of Waukesha bike license form like 12 years ago on it?  I live like 250 miles away from there.  No, I am not going to stroll in and make that kind of fool for myself.  3.) My bike is a piece of crap.
     I hate to say it but it's true.  My bike was a pile of shit.  I am not even sure why I was bothering with it.  I was actually relieved that someone finally took it off my hands.  Listen, it's not even funny.  And the not even funny joke is on the asshole who took it from me.  First of all, the brakes, both front and back, don't work.  That's not true.  They do work eventually.  But if you want to stop for something you pretty much have to plan ahead for at least four city blocks.  So good luck with that.  Let's see, what else is wrong?  Oh yeah, the gears don't switch like they are supposed to.  On both the front and the rear.  I mean, they do but never when or how you want them to.  Wow, that's 0 for 4 with my bike.  So let's recap.  It doesn't go like it's supposed to and it doesn't stop like it should.  Okay.  Well it steers like it should.  Sort of.  I mean, if you tell it to turn to the right, it will.  But the handle bars aren't straight either, so if you want to go straight, you have to make the handle bars point a little bit to the left.  Oh, and did I mention that my bike is pretty much rusting out on every metal surface that exists?  Yeah, that is happening too.  If you stripped the paint off I am sure that it would just fall into a pile of ferric oxide on the ground.  That's rust for those of you who aren't chemistry majors.
     So woe is the douchebag who stole my bike.  I mean, I am not mad at him or her, I understand the complex feelings that go behind theft.  I have stolen things myself before, so I know what it's all about.  I actually feel sorry for them.  Because they have stolen themselves the bicycle equivalent to a Ford Pinto.  Good luck with that.  I am sure that by the time that you read this my bike is rotting on the bank of the Wisconsin River, or it's been ditched back in the woods behind the high school.  Sort of a sad end to a piece of equipment that has been a piece of my life for over ten years.  But such is life.  Not like I rode it much anyway.  If anything it gives me an excuse to get a sweet new one though, now doesn't it?

Saturday, September 13, 2008

My Love Affair With the CBC

     I miss the Canada Channel.  There, I said it.  Back before the Worldwide Headquarters was moved I had the Canadian Broadcast Company on my cable system.  Now I do not.  And as I was flipping channels today I realized that I miss it.  Every weekday at 5 pm I would watch The Simpsons on the CBC.  I spent almost two weeks alone with the CBC during the 2008 Beijing Olympics, because the CBC coverage was way better and more objective and less corny than the coverage on NBC and it was live.  I used to watch all sorts of movies and quality, family appropriate programming like Little Mosque on the Prairie or The Rick Mercer Report.  Those are two shows that you've never heard of.  Don't worry about it, Company.  That's not on you.  But I watched them.  And they were good.  I would even watch Canadian Football (where every team is called the Rough Riders) and Hockey Night in Canada.  Okay, I didn't watch that all that often but still I could have.  I can't do that stuff anymore.  I don't have the Canada channel.
     They also had really good news.  I mean, not only the local news and Canadian politics, but it was really cool to see world events from a non-American perspective.  It always seemed to me less flashy, but with way more substance, and certainly less biased.  It was never pro-American but then again, it was never anti-American either.  It always floored me that they had a Washington Bureau.  How many foreign bureaus do you think ABC has?  Maybe one in London or Tokyo.  But I doubt they have one in Ottawa.  Or Moscow. Or Canberra.  Or Johannesburg.  Just think about that.  CBC made me think about that stuff.  But now how am I supposed to get that kind of news from my TV?  I mean, I know that I can still have the BBC online, but it's just not the same.  I won't get the same world view.  I don't have the Canada channel.
     I know what you are saying Company.  "Big Dave, you are a f$*&%!g retard.  You are getting all emotional over the Canadian Broadcast Company.  They didn't even have a game show on."  Well that's a lie.  They certainly had come game shows.  I mean, they weren't worth watching but they still existed.  And I know what else you are thinking.  "Yeah you got CBC but it wasn't even a local CBC.  It was CBC Montreal.  It was probably in French half the time.  I mean, isn't that the law up there?  I am pretty sure that I saw that in Canadian Bacon."  First of all, no it was not in French.  Second of all, you're an idiot.  But to be honest, it used to perplex me too.  Why was I getting local news for Montreal?  I mean, that is like eleventy billion miles away.  Shouldn't they be piping in the CBC from Sault Ste Marie?  I mean, that's pretty close, and that would make a lot more sense.  But the more I watched, and the more I thought about it, I was glad that they gave us CBC Montreal.  Because, let's face it, aside from the strip clubs and some amazing scenery, Soo Canada sucks.  It really sucks balls.  But Montreal is cool.  It is easily the most European city that isn't in Europe.  It's cosmopolitan.  It's a little bit cranky.  But it's got a ton of history and art and soul.  I guess that the word for it is cosmopolitan.  Soo, Canada is just grubby.  But now, I don't really are.  It doesn't really matter to me.  I don't have the Canada channel.
     
I don't have the Canada channel anymore.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Mike Evanson Thinks I Am A Liar

     So I had a little run in the other day that involved my cellular telephone. I am sure you are familiar with cellular telephones. You might call them cell phones. If you are Nelly you might call it a celly. Not only because you think you are cool but because it rhymes with your name. Whatever. But I had an incident with it. As part of the recent relocation of my Worldwide Headquarters I went out and got a new telephone number. It was at this number that I received a text message from another local number.
     Well this both excited and perplexed me. I have lived in this new town of mine for a mere two days, and as far as I know no one here knows my number. Not even the pizza place across the way knows it. Not even my work knows it. Not even my landlord does. So I was wondering who could be calling me.
     I am not going to lie, I was hoping it was a chick. Yeah, that’s right. I was hoping that some way, somehow, some girl got a hold of my phone number and dialed it up. I don’t know, maybe she worked for the cell phone company and used some sort of space age technology to find out my number and get a hold of me. That would have been nice. Maybe she stole my cell phone while I was upstairs in a different office at work and went into the phone info and got it and then turned my phone off and put it back in my backpack. That would have been odd since there are no young girls in my office, but maybe one of the women that I work with did that for their attractive daughter. I don’t know. But that’s what I was hoping for. Instead, what I got was Mike Evanson.
     I don’t know who Mike Evanson thinks he is, but he was all up in my business. He texted me to ask what I was doing and since I thought he was a hot chick I answered. He called me Dustin somewhere in the first two texts but it was hard to understand and I didn’t pick up on it. So I kept going. I asked him who he was. He told me he was Mike Evanson. Well, welcome to the jungle Mike Evanson. I asked him if he knew who I was. He said I was Dustin. Now I know that not all of you know me personally, Company, but I think that you have all figured out that I am not Dustin. Otherwise you would be reading Big Dustin and Company. And that you most certainly are not. So I respond that I am not Dustin. And Mike Evanson decides to respond with “But u said u were dustin befour then who r u”
     Okay, there are so many things wrong with this message that I don’t even know where to begin. You all know how I feel about text message language. So I am not even going to get into that today. But then he didn’t even put in b4. He wrote out befour. That is the most retarded thing that I have ever seen. There, I said it. Plus, who is this numbnuts to question who I am. Did he think that I was messing with him? Did he think that I was stringing him along? Seriously? What did he think was going on? Did he really thing that I was Dustin? And what kind of person is Dustin that Mike Evanson would think he would do this kind of thing? Somebody explain this to me. Please. Mike Evanson please explain this to me. What were you thinking? Why didn’t you ask me to be your friend. I told you that I was new in town when you doubted that I wasn’t Dustin. Yet you took no steps to welcome me to the community. Well Mike Evanson, that is just awful. If I ever find out who you are there is a good possibility that I will throw something at the general direction of your face. I am sorry, that is how it has to be. Unless you call me up and we can sort this out. You obviously have my number.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Cable, The Sheriffs Office, and My Signature

     Well Company, I am back.  It has been hell the last couple of days here at the new Worldwide Headquarters without TV or Internet.  But I did everything that I could so that you would still have fresh and new stuff to read.  I wrote a couple of things ahead of time at David Nathaniel's and then yesterday I tried to go out and find someplace with WiFi so I could write you something new.  No such luck though.  I walked all up, down, and around this town and couldn't find a single place.  I am wondering if the coffee house out on the edge of town had Internet, but that was far away and, quite frankly, I just didn't have the oomph to get up and remember where I parked.  Today though, was especially exciting because not only did I get the Internet here but I got the Internet at work as well.  Turns out that in today's office, it's terribly difficult to work without a computer.  But now I have one and I have something to do during the slow period.  Thank God I am starting during the slow period.  
     I had a run-in with the county sheriff yesterday.  I was taking the tour of the courthouse (I work in a courthouse by the way) and the good people at Information Technologies (IT) sent my up to the Sheriff's Office to get my photo taken for my ID.  They called up there and asked if they had time to take a photo and up I went.  When I got up there they told me that I had to go next door to the jail.  So to the jail I went and they buzzed me into the back.  Well, turns out that when you get buzzed into the back, you are actually in the halls where the cells are.  And the cells were open.  The inmates were out and a couple of them were milling around.  I am pretty sure that that is not supposed to happen.  In fact, I am totally sure that that is not supposed to happen.  Most o the deputies were cool, but one was freaking out.  He goes "[IT] doesn't run my jail."  Well no shit, but your people didn't have to buzz me in buddy.  
     So then they take me into the booking room.  Turns out, the equipment that they use for badge photos is the same equipment that they use for taking mug shots when one gets arrested.  Fantastic.  At least they were nice enough to cover up that thing with the lines that shows how tall you are.  And they didn't make me hold numbers across my chest.  So I guess that all is not lost.  An interesting thing happened while I was up there though.  The nice deputy who was helping me typed in my last name and my mom's name popped up automatically.  Seeing as how she vacations up here, I wonder what she has done wrong.  I am going to have to ask her if she's been being naughty lately.  
     Then the nice deputy begins to enter my information.  Name.  Address.  Social Security Number.  Drivers License Number.  Hair color.  Eye color.  Height.  Weight.  Vision restrictions (glasses, contacts, etc.), facial hair, etc.  Then she hits enter.  And the computer pops up an error message.  It says "Unusual weight."  That's right, the computer called me fat. 
     The deputy was so cool about it too.  She looks at it like it's crazy, totally blows it off, and says "That's not an unusual weight.  500 pounds in, but that's not."  So she was cool.  But I couldn't believe it.  What, did the computer think I was lying?  I could understand if I had said something ridiculously low.  Because 95% of people in the US would do that.  But, what, am I going to say that I am really fat in case I want to eat a lot later?  I am not understanding here.  Does the computer think that the deputy is a retard?  Does it think that she can't even come close.  Like, she looks a a twelve-year-old and says "600 pounds, easy."  No.  So I don't know why the programmers at Douchebag Technologies or wherever programmed that business thought that they were doing but it was unnecessary.  Nobody is that stupid.
     I did get yelled at today though.  Well, not yelled at.  My boss isn't the type to yell, but I was scolded.  That's a better word.  It's the first time that I have been.  And it stung.  She was nice about, don't get me wrong.  And she's the boss, so she can set whatever parameters she so desires.  But she yelled at me because of my signature.
    Yeah, yeah, yeah.  I can hear you, Company.  I've been getting shit about my signature for years because, well, because it in no way, shape, or form resembles any sort of letters whatsoever.  So what?  Tons of people have illegible signatures.  I've signed my name so many times over the last few years that, coupled with my laziness, all the letters just sort of disappeared.  The Post Office accepts it.  The Michigan State Police accept it.  Charter Communications just did when I signed the work order for my cable.  But apparently my boss won't.  So now, at work, I have been forced to use a legible signature.  I hate it.  It doesn't look cool, and it takes me eleventy billion minutes to sign my name now.  Great.  Maybe we can find a happy medium.
    But that's my update for today, Company.  I wrote a post about something that happened to me in the last couple of days in Microsoft Word while I didn't have Internet, so look for that tomorrow.