Friday, October 31, 2008

Halloween

     So it's Halloween today today kids. And you know what that means. Big party on State St. All sorts of tomfoolery with kids running around and being dumb. All sorts of tomfoolery with adults running around being dumb. Children wandering the streets of Middle America all hopped up on suger. Pre-teens snorting Pixy Sticks like they are high dollar coke. Orange and black covering every surface. Bits of pumpkin strewn about the street in front of my dad's house. People dressed like just about everything under the sun. Basically, for one day, our whole country celebrates Carnival. One day that we can just act like we are in Saw V. Or we can go see Saw V.
     The neat thing about Halloween is that for one day, ONE DAY, adults can act like they are children. If you are a little kid and you can go ahead and dress up like a superhero every day. If you are an adult, try to walk into your office dressed like the Green Lantern and not get tackled by the security guard. Try to go to your friendly local PTA meeting dressed like a fairy princess and see if you can get anything accomplished. But on October 31 every year, all bets are off. On Halloween your garbage man could come by to empty the bins dressed like a Harlem Globetrotter. Your dental hygentist could be cleaning your teeth while wearing a Nixon mask. I bet your brother's boss is dressed like Snuffleuphagus. At least I hope he is.
     The other really nice thing about Halloween, especially if you are a kid, is that it is the one day of the year when you can act like a little prick and you won't get in trouble at all. If it was June 3 and I threw an egg at someone's house I'd get my ass pounded. But on October 31, it's cool. See what I mean? It's nutso. But isn't it awesome? You can go around kicking people and they just chalk it up to a prank.  It's great if you are a little kid because anything goes.  And unfortunately, at least in my neighborhood when I was growing up, the kids didn't take advantage of it.  We were never out toilet papering until we were in high school, and then we never did it on Halloween.  We never threw eggs at stuff.  I kind of with we would have.
      So go out and enjoy Halloween, no matter if you are six or sixty.  Don't fret it if you look a little odd, or if the stiffs in the world make fun of you.  Dress up like a dragon.  Dress up like Raggedy Ann.  Dress up like one of those little Dutch kids with the funny hats and wooden shoes.  I don't care just don't be afraid to enjoy the holiday, that's what Halloween is all about.
     It's my sister's birthday today, so make sure you send Happy Birthday wishes out to her.  I know that I do.  
     And that's on the Internet, so it must be true.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Devil's Night

     Well Company, it is October 30th, which means that it is Devil's Night. Traditionally, what people do on Devil's Night is they go out and cause all sorts of mischief and destruction. "But wait Big Dave", I can hear you saying, "aren't you supposed to be doing that business on Halloween night?" Yeah, that's what I thought. But that was before I lived in Michigan.
     Here is the deal with Devil's Night. Down in Detroit particularly, on the night before Halloween, people run around, break windows and cause destruction. Back in the day, this wasn't exactly the case. It used to be that the younger sect would go around and do all the traditional Halloween stuff, like egging houses and smashing pumpkins and other acts of basically harmless vandalism. For instance, if you had gone to Detroit on a Devil's Night during the mid-90s there was a pretty good chance that you would have actually seen The Smashing Pumpkins smashing pumpkins. But all that good old fashioned 1950s crew-cut public service announcement film petty vandalism went out the window in the early 1970s.
     Sometime during the early 70s someone got the bright idea to start fires. Apparently spraying shaving cream on everything wasn't enough, now every October 30th they have to try to flip my DykeWagon and set it on fire. People were actually burning down their homes and businesses, blaming it on the Devil's Night crowd, and then using the insurance settlement money to move out to the suburbs. Which I don't understand, because I've been to the Detroit suburbs, which are generally bland and soulless, and they actually make me want to commit arson more than the actual city does. But anyway, by the late 1980s 500-800 fires were raging in Detroit every year at the end of October. Fantastic.
     And that works fine. Because Detroit is a shithole. Except for a few blocks right downtown where the high rises and the People Mover are, and maybe the zoo out on 8 Mile. Not the neighborhood around the zoo, I mean within the fences of the zoo. Let's be serious. The rest of Detroit (Or, "The D" as they've taken to calling themselves. Actually, their new tourism slogan is "Experience the D." Miss Cara didn't get why I thought that was absolutely hilarious.) pretty much sucks balls. Like, lock your doors and think twice about stopping at red lights kind of ball sucking.
     Not that I want to harp on Detroit, or cut down southeast Michigan in general. I have met and known many, many wonderful people from Detroit metro. I have had many good times in Detroit Metro. But here is the deal. My town, for the most part, remains pretty nice. I mean, there are a couple of houses here and there that might be a bit dilapidated, and the alley and courtyard behind my apartment are apparently crime-ridden cesspools where bikes go to disappear and cars go to get the shit beat out of them (I am not bitter or anything) but all in all it's a nice little Midwestern American town. So I don't want anyone reading this to go burning down my town, that's all. In fact, unless you live in Detroit I wouldn't recommend burning anything down whatsoever. Unless you are a forest ranger or firefighter doing a controlled burn or something. Or if you operate an incinerator or something.
     But I definitely wouldn't recommend burning anything down for Devil's Night. I would do that if I lived in Detroit either, because now they have legions of roving concerned citizens called Angel's Night who take to the streets on Devil's Night and keep the city from going all 1871 Chicago. They even have a poster contest that you can enter if you want. And in my town there is me. If I catch you out smashing pumpkins or fishing lining my car, that's fine. I might even help you throw a roll or two of toilet paper. But let's keep it relatively harmless. I live in a town where graffiti is polite, grammatically correct, and features pictures of ducks and bathroom fixtures. We aren't ready for a Detroit-style Devil's Night. Keep that stuff down at Gratiot and 4 Mile. That's where they expect it. I saw that on the Internet, so it must be true.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

The Follower

     For those of you who are regular readers of Big Dave and Company you know that we like to celebrate milestones in our history.  Our first comment.  The first post to get double digit comments.  All that sort of stuff.  Well, today we have another milestone to note.  The first follower.
     Yeah, congratulations Mikealicious.  All the rest of you punks obviously don't pay enough attention to what is going on to be the first follower.  I am just kidding.  But seriously, a couple of weeks ago I placed a neat Blogger widget on my blog that allows me to have followers.  If you are a followers it will let you know about new and exciting posts that I put on Big Dave and Company.  I never said a word I just dropped it in there like a doughnut into hot oil and let it cook.  And Mikealicious was the first one brave enough to sample the doughnut that is being a Big Dave and Company follower.  
    So kudos Mikealicious.  And thank you.  I encourage all of you to go ahead and sign up and become followers because, honestly, it's the cool thing to do.  Seriously.  It's cooler than smoking, drinking, getting your drivers license, shooting dice, and being a clown ALL ROLLED INTO ONE!  So get on it Company, and become a Big Dave and Company Follower.  Officially become part of the Company.  Because I am sure that Mikealicious is lonely there all by himself.  And I am not above calling each and every one of you out by name.  Let's go, or I will never get famous and you will never get to go to Idaho.
     By now I assume that you are thoroughly confused.  And that's okay.  I understand.  So I will get down to the explaining.  First of all let me say to you Little Jeffy that I know you have been to Idaho already and you will probably get to go back regardless of whether or not I get famous.  So just settle down you.  As for the rest of you, you will miss the exciting opportunity to go to Idaho if you don't sign up to be a follower.  Here is the plan.  Big Dave and Company is going to make me famous.  By becoming a follower you help expand my readership and lead me one step closer to fame.  Once I become famous, every Labor Day I am going to fly my helicopter around and pick up all the Company for a massive Labor Day party at my Idaho compound.  If you don't sign up to be a follower how am I supposed to know to send the helicopter to your place?  That's the long and short of it.
    So do you follow, Company?  It's a pretty easy daisy chain to follow down.  If you sign up to be a follower of Big Dave and Company you will receive a free trip to Idaho.  Easy as pie.  If you don't ever want to go to Idaho and enjoy the splendor that will be my mountaintop compound then don't sign up.  Sign up and you can see how I am going to have the top of a mountain sheered off and a compound built in its place.  Seriously, become an official part of The Company and you get a free trip to Idaho with at least me and Mikealicious.  And that's on the Internet so it must be true.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Volume Up, Volume Down

     So, I have a question, Company. Actually, I have several questions. First of all, does anyone know who is in charge of setting the volume on the TV? I don't mean your TV at home. I don't mean the TV in the community building at the nursing home that your grandmother watches Matlock and reruns of Match Game PM on. I am talking about the person who is at the master control out in Los Angeles at the broadcast center. Does anyone know this person? Does anyone know a person who knows this person? And the biggest question is this. Why does that guy consistently turn up the volume at night? That is the one time when we need the volume the least. All the old people are asleep by eight, and they are the ones who need the volume.
     Honestly, when was the last time that you walked into a child's room and there was a TV blaring out Spongebob? Never. It's always sort of just on in the background. That's because kids hear just fine. But when was the last time you went to visit your great-aunt Harriet and you could hear her watching Wheel of Fortune from six blocks away? Yeah, that happened last Tuesday. In fact, I think that I can hear it right now, she's watching an old movie on Turner Classic Movies. But the point is that she's got the Belltone cranked all the way up to ten and you could still drive one of those Australian road trains right through the middle of her living room and she would be blissfully unaware.
     You know who else hears just fine? I do. And most of my friends and co-workers do. In fact, a small section of the population excluded, most Americans who have been alive for less than 60 years can hear most things just fine. Freight trains in the night. A-Town listening to Mr. Big on his iPod. Charles Nelson Riley doing whatever Charles Nelson Riley doing. We can hear all that jazz. And in general we do not need help. So quit turning up the volume of the TV at night.
     "But Big Dave, what about the elderly folks. You just said that my Uncle Ernie down in Port Charlotte can't hear all that well, and I know he watched TV like 42 hours every day. So shouldn't we be turning up the volume for him at night?" No we should not. Because your Uncle Ernie is fed by 5, home by 6, and dozing in his Barcalounger by the time that the first shot of Doogie Howser on hits the airwaves at the beginning of How I Met Your Mother. So settle down with the volume control, please. The only reason, the ONLY reason that we should be cranking up the volume knob down in central control is in an attempt to make the elderly people who are all sleeping in their chairs get up and go to bed. I am wondering if that is the logic behind things. Like, maybe if we make the TV super loud they will hear it, wake up, and trundle off to bed. I mean, they have to wake up at like 4 am and eat their Cream of Wheat anyway. Maybe, just maybe, by making the nightly news come on at ten or eleven at full blast they will get up and go to bed. But I doubt it. I am thinking that its usually peeing that rousts Uncle Melvin out of his slumber and gets him into bed. Or maybe Aunt Bea wakes herself up with her own snoring. I don't know.
     I really don't know. But I do know that the people who need the television turned up the loudest are the ones who go to bed the earliest. So if anything TV should get softer as the evening goes on. By 9 pm it's usually loud enough, especially on the commercials, to be heard over the jets that are always flying over your house because you bought one near the airport because you got a good deal on it because the jets are always flying over. So anyway, let's knock it off with ratcheting up the volume every night after 8 pm. Let's get on the horn with California and ask them nicely. I don't care if their governor used to be the Terminator, I am still going to point my finger at them. Call your friends, I will call mine, and someone will know who is behind this. Maybe we can take his knob away once we set the volume. That would be a good solution. Whatever, I don't care. But we need to band together to do something about it. Because it's pissing me off. And that is on the Internet, so it must be true.

Monday, October 27, 2008

The First Snow of the Year

     Well Company, the first snow of the year is here for me and I would guess for most of you. I woke up this morning and the entire town was covered with the white stuff, and more was coming down. I opened the window in the shower and I could smell it. Yes, snow has a certain smell to it. And I am not talking about the smell of yellow snow either. I could smell it and I could hear it. Snow has a certain sound as well. It's not so much that the snow itself has a sound, it just mutes the sound of everything else that is going on under and around it. And it was pretty. Going to work it was lightly falling as big, beautiful flakes and coating everything that had been so wet and bleak and depressing just the day before. Then a big wind came whipping down Division Street and blasted me in the face. That's when I finally woke up, realized that it was snowing, and I did the thing that everyone else does when the first snow of the year arrives. I completely flipped out.
     First thing I did was that I called in to work. Please. They can't expect me to be out in the world when there is upwards of a half inch of snow on the ground. That is just unreasonable. I told them that I would not be in and it might be days or weeks before I was plowed out. Then, I turned around in my tracks and went home. I went into my apartment and laid down in bed under six comforters and a retired sled dog team and I waited for my utilities to go out. Because it's snowing outside, that means all my utilities will go out. The cable, the phone, the electricity, even the water. It's all going to go out because it's snowing and it's Armageddon.
     So I waited a while longer and soon I was hungry. That is when I realized that I did not have the proper stores and supplies for the blizzard that was surely beginning. I needed to go out and buy canned goods, bottled water, anti-bacterial soap, Styrofoam plates, plastic forks, an Erector Set, batteries, gasoline, a generator, 14 snow shovels, candles, and a years worth of issues of US Weekly - everything I would need to survive the unprecedented blizzard that was upon us. Oh sure, those flakes looked benign enough, falling ever so softly and silently like they were falling on Whoville during the opening scene of "When the Grinch Stole Christmas," but I knew, and everyone else knew that we were in store for something epic. But first I had to get to the store.
     I knew that getting to the store was going to be a big challenge, so I did what motorists all throughout the region were doing. I altered my driving habits in the most extreme and unimaginable way possible. I decided that due to the once in a lifetime snow event that was occurring around me, simply being more cautious, keeping a greater distance between me and the car in front of me, slowing down a little bit, and not trying to brake and steer at the same time would not suffice to be able to make my way to the store to get my provisions. So this is what I did:
      First, I went out and put chains on my tires. I am unfortunate enough to not own a four wheel drive vehicle, so I made sure the get heavy duty chains for the tires on the DykeSedan. The chains that I bought I actually special ordered so that they have giant spikes on them, almost like ice climbing boots, as well as large flat panels to help my vehicle ride on top of the snow. This way they can both help my car dig in to and float on top of any snow that might be in my path. So I went down and put my super chains on my tires. But I knew that in this first snow of the year emergency event my chains of justice would not be sufficient to assure my survival. So I put on long johns, a snowmobile suit, and blaze orange Carhart jacket and overalls over the top, hitched a rope to the front of my car, strapped on my snowshoes, and pulled the DykeSedan to the grocery store to get my provisions.
     As far as I could see it that was the only logical and safe way that I could make it to where I was looking to go. I mean, no vehicle known to man would have been able to get through this massive snow event. Not even a snow cat, a snowmobile, or a rocket ship. And I knew that with the most treacherous half inch of snow in the history of history on the roads that no speed would be slow enough to allow for maximum safety and braking. So I just pulled the car along on foot with my snowshoes. It took me three and a half hours to go the four blocks to the grocery store but this was an emergency condition so I figured that I was doing pretty well.
     By the time that 2 pm rolled around, however, I was extremely concerned for the well being of my co-workers. Many of them live outside of town and I had no way of knowing that they were alive. Well, I received word that they had all congregated in the courthouse in order to ride out the storm together. So again I slogged my way through the maelstrom until I reached the courthouse steps. I could barely see it through the now light flurries that were being whipped around by a wind that was gusting up to 6 miles per hour. I almost ran smack into the side of the building. But I had made it. I stumbled inside and curled up in the vestibule for warmth. Soon thereafter, one of the members of the custodial team pulled me in and put a blanket around me. So now I am here in the courthouse waiting out the storm with the rest of my office. It's the only way that we are all going to survive. Because there is has to be almost an inch of snow on the ground by now; it's falling at a rate of over and inch a day at this point, and I don't know if we will all make it. But we will try. We will live even if we are reduced to eating the fish in the tank and the office plants. Because we are survivors and it takes more than the first snow of the year to take us down. And that's on the Internet, so it must be true. God willing.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

My Love Affair With AM Radio

     I was wandering about town the other night, the night that I defeated Bike Guy actually, and I was trying to listen to the World Series Game ONe between the Philadelphia Phillies and the Tampa Bay Rays.  But I was running into obstacles, the largest of which was that there was no radio station in town airing it.  Yeah, none.  I know that ESPN Radio had it but the ESPN station that serves my area chose not to partake.  Uncool.  So I did what any nerdy American boy would do.  I hit the AM radio dial.
     Yeah, you read that right.  I know that I am a dorky nerd but I love AM radio, especially at night.  Because the cool thing is that AM radio waves travel better through the atmosphere at night, so you can hear radio stations from all over the place.  Just the other night, on my cheap little knock-off Walkman, I heard a radio station from Montreal, Quebec giving me restaurant ads and the local news in French, KDKA out of Pittsburgh, and more different hockey games than I care to admit.  I also heard bits and pieces of the World Series on stations from the Twin Cities, Iowa, Cleveland and Port Huron, MI.  No lie.  Sometimes in my bedroom I can listen to stations from Denver and Cincinnati.  And I can always pick up the stations out of Milwaukee and Chicago. 
     This, I feel is intensely cool.  And I think that there is something amazing about hearing the Chicago traffic report detailing bumper to bumper gridlock on the Dan Ryan at 9 pm while standing utterly alone in the woods of Northern Wisconsin.  Or listening to the St. Louis Rams play on the station from St. Louis.  
    I know, I am boring you.  So I am going to stop now.  But I just think it's cool.  I love AM radio as much as I love the CBC.  And that is on the Internet, so it must be true.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Taking on the Enemy

Okay, seriously, I am still not a Blogger Blog of Note. And I don't understand. So like a mean and spiteful high school girl who can't get a date to the prom, it is time for me to cut down the competition. So lets get started.
Cooking for Engineers. Okay, how many people are interested in this blog. Show of hands? Yeah, that's what I thought. So why is it a Blog of Note? First of all, if you are an engineer, and you have an engineers mind, a careful, precise, measuring mind, you shouldn't be cooking. You should be baking. Baking is the field where it matters how much baking powder you add for each ounce of buttermilk. Baking is where it matters exactly how much flour you use. Cooking is for the free spirit. Cooking is for those who like to live by the seat of their pants. Baking is for guys in narrow ties and starched white shirts, cooking is for hippies. If this blog was called "Baking for Engineers" then I wouldn't have a problem with it being a Blog of Note, but it's not. It's "Cooking for Engineers." So it's on my hit list.
Linda's Bees. Okay, so this one is a real bee in my bonet. Pun defninitely intended. By looking at it one can tell that Linda works very hard on her blog. WAY harder than I will ever work. And what she is doing I guess is kind of cool. I mean, she is chronicling her foray into beekeeping. The problem is that beekeeping isn't all that interesting. I mean, a half-hour Discovery Channel special? Yeah, I'm in. But a three-year-long running weblog. Gag me with a spoon. I think the thing that really gets me going about Linda's Bees is that before she became a Blog of Note she was getting 350 hits a day. That's more that I get in a month if you INCLUDE all the times I hit the site while I am putting it together. After she became a Blog of Note she got FOUR THOUSAND hits in one day. That's what I am talking about. Linda, it's nothing personal. It's pure, unadulterated jealousy.
OK Go. OK Go has a Blog? That's cool. Not surprising but it's cool. Here is my issue with this. OK Go had that super sweet video for the song "Here It Goes Again" where they did that awesome choreographed dance routine on the treadmills. You remember that? I do, it was awesome. Their song was pretty good too, it's on my iPod. I even paid for it. But the point here is that they are already a famous rock band and they don't need the boost that comes with being a Blog of Note. Rock on guys, but seriously, you are already famous. Leave the being a Blog of Note to those of us who are desperately clawing to become like you are.
CompuDent News. I didn't even read this blog. It appears to be some sort of company website where imformation about computers and software and other things like that are disseminated to the public. I don't know which members of the public it is intended for, but I would assume that there are some pretty good pointers and tidbits in there. Good pointers and tidbits, yes, but ultimately nothing that you can't find somewhere else on the Internet. You won't find all of the inner workings of my life and mind splattered about the Internet. All of that is concentrated in one tiny little corner of cyberspace at Big Dave and Company. Think about that. Oh, and one more thing, all that stuff is on the Internet, so it must all be true.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

My Successful Failure

     By now, Company, I am sure that you know all about how my bike was stolen.  And I am sure that you are familiar with how I made an unsuccessful attempt to get it back.  Well, last night I made another foray into enemy territory.  And this time, I am glad to report, I was slightly more successful.  
     But I was not totally successful.  To borrow a term from the movie Apollo 13, which stars a bunch of dudes who were in other movies as well, it was a "successful failure" in that I did not get my bike back but I was able to ascertain that it was there.  Here is how it went down:
     I was out wandering about town, making an also largely unsuccessful attempt to listen to the World Series on the radio, and I happened to be over near the very center of Bike Guy's home turf.  I knew from the beginning that things were going to be different.  Why?  Two reasons.  1.) No deer.  I don't know whose lawn they were mowing tonight, but those people did not live in the neighborhood I was in.  2.) The fucking annoying dog that always barks at me and runs at me but won't leave the yard was not outside and didn't hear my go by.  I am not sure about this dog.  Sometimes he is outside, sometimes he is inside when I go by, but usually when he is inside he hears me and his dumbass owners always let him out.  So he comes charging at me like he's a rabid badger or something but he always pulls up when he gets to about 2 feet from the curb.  And this makes me wonder.  He doesn't jerk back like he is on a leash.  Maybe he knows not to go into the street.  Maybe there is an invisible fence buried in the ground around his yard.  Maybe when he was a puppy he watched his brother get run over by an asphalt-laying machine and now he is deathly afraid of asphalt.  I don't know.  But I do know that he never bothers me but I am never sure that he won't start.  So anyway, sorry about that.  That was a tangent.  That one's not on you, Company.  
     So anyway, that is that dog.  But like I said, he wasn't there.  He was inside licking his ass or something.  So I cruise by his house and I decide that I am full of bravado tonight and I am going to go find out about this bike thing.  So I go into the alley.  No cars around.  I get past the garage with the amazing bright fucking retard motion light.  Great.  Now I won't think about stealing all of your stupid shit which, by the way is LOCKED INSIDE YOUR FUCKING GARAGE!  Thanks for wasting energy on your super bright motion light though, and thanks for pissing all your neighbors off.  I hope that someday you pull in and that thing turns on and blinds you and you drive through your garage door.  Then I can sneak in and take your shit and I win.  And then Bike Guy can steal your ordinary bike.  
     Yeah, but anyway, I get on past the lame-ass super duper light and I am up the alley, right up to the backyard of the Bike Guy Central Headquarters.  I look around; conditions are perfect.  No lights in any windows  No one around.  I step foot on Bike Guy's grass and it's on.  Again.
     So I go, cool, calm, and collected, along the property line to the back of the garage.  And I start rifling through the stack of bikes.  And I am waiting for the useless piece of shit dustmop of a dog that he has to start yipping inside the damn house.  But it doesn't.  Not a sound from anywhere.  Not a movement or a stirring.  Except for me sliding from bike to bike searching for a familiar frame or seat or broken gear shift.  Anything.  But I did not find it.
     So now, emboldened by my impending success, I make my way back to the alley and to the other lot line, where I make my way to the back of the shed.  That is when I see it.  A light on upstairs at the neighbors.  And then a shadow in that window and a movement.  I continued on.  See, the house with the light was B-Town's babysitters, so I knew that she would smooth things over for me if I needed it.  But it's not going to be needed.  I had truth on my side.  So like a cat I am on the bikes behind the shed, and there is no luck there.  That is when I get super bold and decide to go back to the garage to double check.  
     I go back to the garage and I am like a ninja in a cheesecake factory, I am all stealth and cream cheese.  And I rifle through the stacks again like I am looking for back issues of Popular Mechanics at the library.  And I again do not find my bike.  But as I turn to make my escape, I notice something else.  There is another, smaller shed, right along the edge of the alley.  And it too was filled with bikes.
     That's right, Bike Guy had a shed filled with little kids bikes.  There was even a scooter in there.  But it was all bikes for kids say, 10 and under.  It was like the Thanksgiving kids table of the Bike Guy's back yard.  I guess it was nice of him to keep them out of the weather.  But it also kept them out of view, so parents cruising through the alley looking for little Timmy's bike wouldn't be able to see them.  That's smart Bike Guy.  But you'd better give Timmy his bike back.  Because without his bike to ride the little bastard will probably fall down a well and then Lassie will have to come save him.  But I am calling animal control on Lassie.  Because she needs to be off the streets and so does Timmy.  He can stay down the well because he falls down the damn thing every week, and he can't lock up his damn bike.  Sucks to be you Timmy.  You retarded retard.
     So, all in all it was a successful failure in that I didn't get my bike back but I was able to discern that it was not there.  So I assume that he didn't take it.  Or he did and it's been chopped up for parts by now.  Who knows.  My leading theory now is that some scumbag thirteen year-olds who had to take a break from masturbating to the JC Penney catalogue lingerie section stumbled upon it while wandering home from the movies and took it for a joyride and now its rusting in some muddy backwater of the Wisconsin River off the Illinois Road somewhere.  But who knows.  I am over it.  It's gone and I am ready to move on now that I know Bike Guy didn't take it.  There is nothing more I can do.  And that is on the Internet, so it must be true.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Scotch Tape for Your Insides

     Did you know that Scotch tape emits X-rays? Did you know that? I didn't know that. But apprently a group of graduate students at UCLA do. Because they've just released a study on that very issue.
     This group of researchers found that when pullef off it's roll in a vacuum, ordinary Scotch tape, like the kind you have holing your glasses frames together from when they broke when you were all drunk and fell down the stairs at the frat house and haven't had the time or the money to go to the optometrist to get them fixed yet. Just everyday run-of-the mill Scotch tape. And that is not the wackiest part of this escapade. Apparently, they are targeting this new advancement as a way to create X-ray machines for areas where electricity is unavailable or unreliable. Like in ambulances. Or Africa.
     Apparently the Russians knew about this over fifty years ago. Some Soviet scientists back then reported X-rays being admitted when they were pulling Scotch tape, or at least the Russian version of Scotch tape, off of glass. But back then, nobody listened to the Soviets. Well, I shouldn't say that. We listened to everything they said, we just did not believe most of it. So no one over here paid attention.
     Now, what these researchers at UCLA were doing messing around with Scotch tape in a vacuum, I don't know. Maybe one of them was taking a Russian language class and came upon the old Soviet reports. Although why one would be reading fifty-year old scientific reports in a Russian language class is beyond me. But that could be. Ot maybe they were all drunk one night and REALLY super dorky and slipped into the lab and thought it would be cool to put some everyday office supplies into a vacuum.
     I doubt that is the case though, since this seems to be a pretty highly orchestrated experiment. They had a machine in this vacuum doing all the work for them, peeling the rolls at 1.2 inches per second. And what they saw were tons of X-rays admitted when electrons jumped from the roll to the tape that was being pulled away. So that's the deal. They even used the power of these X-rays to take an X-ray of one of the researcher's fingers.  How cool is that?
     And, like any good university students, these guys are looking toward using their invention to aid the human race.  They are thinking that you could peel tape with something as simple as human cranking power, which is all well and good, but how much tape is one going to have to crank to get enough X-rays to examine a leg or a collarbone?  How does one go about changing the tape if the peeling has to be done in a vacuum?  Do you have to get a whole new X-ray machine.  These are all important issues to sort out.  And the young men and women at UCLA have seven years to get it figured out.  Because, like smart university entrepreneurs, they have already taken out a patent on their research.
     So in the end, you may someday be able to get an X-ray of your ribs or femur or teeth from some guy on the corner with a tape peeling machine in the back of his Impala.  Or your vet may be able to take X-rays of Hound II right at your Sand River home.  Who knows?  It's pretty heady stuff.  And if you are too cash-strapped to afford to use the machine, you can just start peeling all that old Scotch tape from your fourth grade art assignments and get a picture of your insides.  But, whether you are a dude or a chick you had better make sure that you don't do any of that business by your crotch.  Because that shit will make your business bind right up.  And I mean your baby making business.  And that's on the Internet, so it must be true.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

On Wisconsin!

     I have known some celebrated drinkers in my time.  People in all the places that I have lived have consumed alcohol in legendary amounts.  It's a sad fact that alcohol and its consumption have become an important part of the culture of American youth.  So, here is the deal then.  Since drinking is such an important part of our social agendas, then I have just this to say.

Suck it America.

     Yeah, that's right.  I said it.  But why am I telling America to suck it?  An article recently appeared in The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that began with the sentence "Beer for beer and shot for shot, when all 50 states belly up to the bar, few can hold their own with Wisconsin."  That's right, kids.  My Homeland was recently tagged as the drunkest state in The Union.  And since being drunk is apparently so cool, that means that we are the coolest.  Let's look at the statistics.

Binge Drinking - #1
This is a crazy statistic because I am not sure if it counts all the college students or not.  Also, what this particular study defines as binge drinking would cover what I had with dinner tonight (Two beers, one cocktail in about two hours) and what you had during the football game on Sunday.  So keep that in mind.  But the same goes for all the other states included in the study, so bite me Arizona.

Percentage of Drinkers in the Population - #1
Ummmm...yeah.  Not much I can say about that other than to ask Maine if they are jealous.

Driving Under the Influence - #1
Yeah, okay.  This one is not so good.  But everyone has that one grade on their report card that raises eyebrows.  This is like the straight A student who gets a bad mark for effort because she is bored in the algebra class.  Sometimes you just have to rank in the areas you would rather not.  It is this statistic that is in my mind then I walk home from the bar in the middle of the street.  Because all those drunk assholes will mow me down if I am on the sidewalk.

Brandy Consumption - #1
Vodka Consumption - #1
Beer Consumption - #4?
This is an interesting set of statistics.  First of all, I don't know that we are fourth in beer consumption.  But I know that we are not Number One.  And so I wonder, what's the deal with that?  I mean, there are a bunch of breweries here.  That is one of the things we are known for.  Our baseball team is the Brewers.  I drink lots of beer and I live in Wisconsin.  Back to the report card analogy, this is like the captain of the football team failing the football unit in gym class.  The guy might be synonymous with football but sometimes it happens.  The brandy is from all the old people drinking Old Fashioned, which is a uniquely Wisconsin drink as far as I can tell.  And the vodka?  I have no idea.  Not a lot of Russians floating around, but someone is drinking the clear stuff.  Actually, it's all of us.  And you guys thought you were supposed to carry water in those bottles to work every day.

     Wisconsin also has, per person, three times the taverns as the rest of the country.  It's true though.  To be considered a town in most states you need like a store, maybe a gas station or a post office.  Not here.  Bar.  Only in Wisconsin will you see a bar on the side of the road with a 40 mph speed limit and a green highway department sign out front that says "Nelma: Unincorporated."  And yes that is a real town.  Part of it though is that we are sneaky.  We actually probably have a lot more but we call them "supper clubs."  That's right.  There are hundreds of thousands of Wisconsinites getting sloshed at supper clubs every weekend.  And they aren't even counted in the stats.  How do you feel about that, Hawai'i?
     The great Lewis Black, on his White Album, stated that he "...had been drunker [in Wisconsin] than he had ever been anywhere else."  He went on to say that we were not alcoholics, but we were professionals.  And to a certain degree I think that is true.  Because some people go to the bar every day.  And they actually spend about 40 hours a week there to be honest.  We are so professional and politically correct that libations aren't even called alcoholic beverages in out state statutes.  They are referred to as alcohol beverages.  It's amazing the connotations that that simple "-ic" can have.  But even we know that we are not alcoholics.
     A 32-year old mother performed a 14 second keg stand on opening day at Miller Park in Milwaukee.  I am not exactly sure to to treat that sentence.  On one hand, I am astounded.  On the other hand I am impressed.  I can't picture most mom's doing a keg stand, but just about everyone in Wisconsin that I know who has a child I can picture going to town on a keg.  There was also a group out in the parking lot going beer bongs that included a doctor, several lawyers, and a banker.  Yep, that the people that are making out society run sucking beer out of a beer bong with room for eight.  Oh, and one of them is in their 60s.  
     So we are drunks.  But we are fun.  And we are cute.  At least I am.  And we are not winning the drinking contest by a small margin.  Over the last 10 surveys the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) have conducted on binge drinking, The Homeland has led all ten,  And typically we out-binged our nearest competitor by 13%.  That shows how when we do something in Wisconsin, we do it right.  It speaks to our dedication and work quality.  So lets look at the positives.  In a culture where drinking is king we are the kings of drinking.  So suck it.  Wisconsin is the best.  And that's on the Internet, so it must be true.

Monday, October 20, 2008

A Day In The Life of Big Dave

     Company, I am acutely aware that you have always wanted to get a peek into what a day in my life is like.  But honestly, you should stop pining.  It is not that great.  I am not quite a big enough celebrity to get any sort of red carpet treatment, and that's okay.  But every once in a while something interesting happens as I meander along in my daily life.  And today was a pretty interesting day.  So here, for you, so you can settle down, is a list of things that happened to me today, in no particular order.

- I opened a bank account.  Actually, I opened two of them.  It's not like I have so much money that I can't fit it in one account.  It's not like my cash reserves are so overflowing that they will fill up the bank vaults or anything.  One was a checking and one was a savings.  Again, it's not like I really have anything to put in savings but I like to have a little bit in there for overdraft protection and whatnot.  Plus, it gains interest and that is never a bad thing.  Actually, I was quite happy to get them opened up and running.  That was the second to last major thing I had to do since moving The Worldwide Headquarters and it was weighing on me.  The main problem was that most banks in this town are open exactly the same hours that I am at work.  And their Saturday hours are for the drive-thru only.  And it's generally not socially acceptable to open accounts in the drive-thru.  It's a sad situation but it is true.
- I found out my credit score.  I have never checked on it before.  I know some people who check it religiously but I do not.  FreeCreditReport.com can bite me.  So when the lady at the bank told me that they would have to do a credit check on me before they could give me a check card I was a little bit thrown.  I was waiting for bad results.  I was waiting for her to have to explain credit-related issues to me like I was a small child being explained why it is not okay to eat Play-Doh.  But she did not.  She pulled off the paper and said "You think that is bad?"  She didn't seem to think it was bad.  I still did but that's okay.  I am still going to try to clean it up a little bit.  But I got my debit/ATM card.  So all is well in my world.
- My boss caught me with my feet up on my desk.  Oops.  I was hanging out with some of the deputies, with only about an hour left of work.  We were talking about whatever, and I was leaning back in my chair with one of my two feet propped up on the edge of the desk, looking all sextacular.  Now, in my defense, I was not being all slovenly.  And I was paying attention to keeping up appearances.  Whenever I would hear the front door of my office open I would take my feet down.  And I was still answering my phone.  So it's not like I wasn't paying attention or something.  But Boss Lady came wheeling around the corner and looked in my window, right at my feet.  I am sure that me desperately pulling my foot down was rather conspicuous as well.  But luckily for me she was hurrying out to a budget meeting.  I am going to have to watch myself much more closely I think.
- I was reminded of exactly how tired I am of zucchini.  I made stuffed zucchini the other day.  I had to use the last of my zucchinis that I received.  By the time it is all said and done, I will have eaten zucchini two weeks out of three.  Like, every day for two weeks out of three.  I should have frozen some.  Or just taken one.  But I didn't, and I am going to have to live with the consequences.  And I hope to not have to see another zucchini until the end of next summer.  Unless they are shredded and encased in a delicious bread.
- I received a call from the police.  That's a lie.  It was actually a dispatcher at the Sheriff's Department.  But she was calling to tell me that someone had hit my car with theirs out in the alley and that I should probably go out there.  So I did.  There were two city police officers there, as well as the just graduated girl who hit me and her mother.  I was walking down my back stairs, envisioning glass and plastic spread everywhere with parts of my car that only my mechanic should see showing for all the world.  But when I came around the corner it looked fine.  And as I walked up it looked fine.  In fact, I was about eight feet away before I could tell that anything was different at all.  In the end, there was about an eight-inch crack in the plastic fender.  So as long as it drives okay I am not going to worry about it at all.  Sometimes you just have to brush your shoulders off and move on.
- I ate something bad.  God, I hope it was the zucchini.
- I figured out one of my Internet passwords that I had forgotten.  That was neat.  I didn't really figure it out though.  And I had never forgotten my password.  I had actually forgotten my user ID.  So take that.  And I had to call the place and ask some precisely places innocent questions to get it to work, but now it does and I am happy.  I am also excited that they don't seem to think that I am TOO much of a waterhead.
- I went to bed early.  Well, I am going to go to bed early.  Because sometimes you just have to do that.  So that is what I am going to do.  And it is going to be glorious I can assure you.  Although, my bedroom is a little strange.  First of all it has a strange layout in terms of the furniture, but that's not the problem.  The room is almost completely white and I haven't hung anything on the walls yet.  I just keep forgetting.  So my room is very austere and lacking anything resembling character.  But hey, my eyes are closed most of the time when I am in there anyway, right?  Actually, it sort of looks like something out of a mental hospital in the former Soviet Union.  On second thought, maybe that is not so good...
- I drove my car to work.   I know, that doesn't sound terribly strange or exciting, but you should know that I only live three blocks from work.  Okay, so now it sounds pathetic.  But honestly, I only do it when I have somewhere to go either directly from work or during work.  Because sometimes on my lunch hour I don't have enough time to walk all the way to my car and then run my errands.  Plus, today I had both instances to deal with.  I went places on my lunch and directly after work.  So how do you and your judgments feel about that business?  I know that I feel pretty good about it.
- I wrote an amazing blog.  Yeah, I wrote an amazing blog tonight.  Actually, from where I am sitting, it looks like I have written 190 amazing blogs in a row. But that's just me. I mean, I couldn't even win the Chevrolet Presents the First Annual Big Dave and Company Blog of the Year Award Brought to You By Mountain Dew.  But what do I know.  All I know is that I have written 190 amazing blogs IN A ROW!  And that's on the Internet, so it must be true.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Shamwow!

     I am not Helenocious.  I have never ordered Jesus coins from the TV.  In fact, I have never ordered anything from QVC, HSN, an infomercial or anywhere from the TV.  And I probably never will.  But what I do know is that I LOVE that commercial for the Shamwow.
     First of all, I love the product.  I mean, if you have ever seen the commercial you know that these things are awesome.  They can pick up like eleventy-billion times their weight in liquid.  They can suck up cola through carpet and even take up the stain.  They can even be used to wipe off a boat!  I mean, come on, how many things can be used to wipe off a boat?  It takes a special product for that kind of stuff.  And apparently the Shamwow is huge.  Using contextual clues I have determined that it is approximately three feet wide by one-half mile long.  It has to be roughly that size because they cut the thing up and use it as a bath mat, a dog towel, a carpet for walking up to an awards show from the curb, a trunk mat for a 1993 Mercury Topaz, and a cutting-edge lining for the boots that Eskimos wear while they whale hunt.  And of course it works amazingly for all of those uses, because it's the Shamwow!
     What I really love about the commercial though is the guy.  First of all, he looks like he dried his hair with a Shamwow this morning and got a little extra static out of the deal.  I mean, I have heard of a witch's peak, but he's got like a steeple of hair there.  He has a Sawtooth Mountain range of hair there.  And I am sure that it is somehow related to the Shamwow.  But hair aside, I love this guy.  First of all, he is real.  He is down to Earth.  He knows he is selling something to you and he knows that you know it.  So there is no false pretense.  He just goes through his spiel.  And he's good at it.  He has this air about him - half carnival barker, half buddy showing you his new tool at the workbench in the basement - and I am not going to lie, he really makes me want to have a Shamwow.  Seriously, he's that good.  If I was a chick I bet he could talk his way into my pants in like sixteen minutes.  But I am kind of easy like that.  And then we could use the Shamwow to clean up afterward!  Apparently I am also a genius.  
     But seriously, go watch the video if you haven't seen it already.  This guy is good.  He is a silver-tongued devil and he just makes one want a Shamwow SO BAD!  I am going to ask for one for Christmas despite the fact that I have absolutely no use for it whatsoever.  And because it's one of those TV order things I am going to get like fifteen of them for the price of one.  And it's going to be great.  Maybe then me and the guy can get together and use our Shamwows to fight for justice or dry off a tennis court or something.  Because those things are made in Germany and they can do anything.  It's on the Internet, it must be true.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

The Ducktoon

     Now, I am used to seeing certain things in my life.  I am used to seeing kids in shitty cars with Fox Racing decals on the windows thinking they are cool.  I am used to seeing girls from the local middle school run away from me.  And, at this time of the year, I am used to seeing duck boats all over the place.  They are usually painted camouflage somehow, and they are usually a small rowboat or a john boat.  But that reality was shattered for me the other day as I wandered from the Courthouse to the Post Office.  Because on that day I came upon The Ducktoon.
     I call it The Ducktoon because it was a pontoon that was converted for duck boat use.  And it was glorious.  Some guy had got his hands on a pontoon boat and turned it into a duck boat.  I am repeating myself.  That is how you can tell how amazed and confused I am.
     The Ducktoon was painted, every inch, with camouflage colors.  Usually just the boat and maybe the oars are painted, and the motor is still Evinrude or Mariner colors.  But not in this case.  The pontoons, the deck, the motor, the trailer, even the steering wheel was painted in that traditional camouflage.  But that wasn't all.  This guy was as innovative as he was avid.  Up on top, where the canopy once had been, he had erected something.  Gone was the canopy that covered old people as they tooled around some placid lake drinking scotch and soda.  In it's place was a sort of unfolding canopy designed to look like reeds.  It was pretty impressive.  It unfurled to either side from the center, that he could have one side closed and one side open to shoot from.  Or it could be closed all the way.  Or open all the way.  It was cool.  It was ingenious.  I don't even duck hunt and I have to admit that I was a little jealous of what he had concocted.
     So yeah, The Ducktoon was in full effect in this guy's back yard.  And I have to say, I can't really even think of a downside to it.  Except one.  Using a pontoon, the Buick Park Avenue of the boat world, limits where one can go.  Because The Ducktoon is long.  And the Ducktoon is wide.  And the Ducktoon has a bit of a deep draft.  So no marshy side bogs, nooks, or crannies for The Ducktoon.  You sort of have to hang out in the open, deeper waters.  But no matter.  Because it's a duck blind that floats.  You can take all your buddies out in the middle where no one else will go.  And you don't need cover because you've brought it with you.
     So congratulations, owner of The Ducktoon.  I am happy for you and your unique duck boat.  I am glad that it is sitting proudly in your back yard for the world to see.  I hope that it allows you to have a successful duck hunting season.  Because The Ducktoon is pretty close to the best thing ever.  And that's on the Internet, so it must be true.

Friday, October 17, 2008

A Visit From The Ladies

     The other day, Monday night to be specific for all of you and your insatiable need for detail, I got a phone call from the Peg-a-saurus Rex. Now, this is not an uncommon thing. Not by a long shot. But what she had to say to me was shocking and uncommon to say the least.
     Peg-a-saurus Rex was calling to ask what I was doing the next night. For those of you who are not familiar with the Gregorian calendar, the next night would have been Tuesday. Well, I had nothing on my plate except laundry (laundry which is still not done by the way), and that is always expendable unless I am out of skivvies. So I tell the Peg-a-saurus Rex that I am free and available. That is when she informs me that she and my Mom-Away-From-Mom were going to take me out to dinner.
     Normally this would not be strange. Except that now they live a couple hundred miles away. Understandably I was confused. But that is what she was telling me. She had my cell phone number already and I took the extraordinary step of relating my work number to her in case the ladies had any sort of trouble along the way. And off we went, waiting until Tuesday came.
So Tuesday came. And Tuesday was the day of The Tyler Burke Experience so as you could imagine, I was busy all day long. But I was listening for the phone. It never rang. Neither did my cell. So I assumed that everything was cool. The end of the work day came and I skated off and got sidetracked at Mikealicious' house. It was almost 4:30 pm before my cell phone went off. It was Ma. What she told me was utterly shocking...that she was sitting in the parking lot of my work with the Peg-a-saurus Rex waiting for me. As it turns out, this was the end of a long odessy that was beyond anything that anyone had ever been involved in. Well, that might be stretching things a bit but that it was still pretty fantastical.
     I don't know how fast Ma was driving but they apparently got to town somewhat early. Because as the evening wore on I discovered that they had time to tool around and see what there was to see. I also found out that they had been wandering the halls at work for God-knows how long. This was probably the most amazing part to me. Because the outside doors are supposed to be closed at 4 pm. And I left at 4 pm. So I know that they weren't inside by then. I don't know if they came in as someone else escaped, or if someone forgot to lock the doors or what. But what they were faced with once they got inside was a series of locked office doors. So they were free to roam a series of hallways: FANTASTIC! But there was nowhere that they could get to. Nowhere fun in any event. So that is where they were while I was at Mikealicious' house. They were roaming around my work. And they would have been staying around the courthouse, the jail more specifically, if they had not been more careful.
     Yes, that is correct. The ladies had a run-in with our friendly local law enforcement. NOt a bad run-in. They weren't being harrassed or anything. And they themselves were not being belligerent, or at least I would hope not. But here is the deal. They managed to make a very much illegal right turn at an intersection that is admittedly a terribly intersection. I have to use that on a regular basis and it took two days of me travelling through and around it roughly six times a day to get it into my head what I could or could not do. So I am understanding. And I believe that the sherrif that pulled them over knew it and was understanding too. Because he let them go with a warning. But still, ladies, let's not become felons in my new town.
     All in all though it was a throughly enjoyable evening. We had a nice dinner, had some of our patented good conversation. It was really nice and touching to have people come to visit me, I'm not going to lie. And when they started listing the names of other people who wanted to come too I was just about overwhelmed. So it was nice. And it was especially nice that I didn't have to bail them out of jail. And that's on the Internet, so it must be true.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Into Enemy Territory

     Company, it's on.  I did not know it was on until just a little bit ago, but it's on.  In fact, it's been on for over a month and no one bothered to tell me.  But when I found out it was on today I decided that, since I was already a month behind, I needed to ramp things up a little bit.  What am I talking about?  Well, as you may remember about a month ago someone stole my bike.  Well, that was when it started being on.  And tonight I responded.  Yeah, that's right.  Earlier this evening I went to get my bike back.
     The process of getting my bike back actually goes way back to about the time that it was stolen.  As I was sitting at lunch reminiscing about my bike and weeping silently for its plight, Mikealicious mentioned that it was probably just up the street.  Apparently, there is a man who runs around town without moving his arms, reverse-Riverdance-style, and steals whatever bikes are not chained down.  And he lives just up the street from my work.  Well apparently this seed was germinating in B-Town's head, because she came to me a couple of days ago to tell me that the house was right next door to her children's day care, and that there were many, many bikes there, and that she was sure mine was one of them.  I was ready to just let it go, to give my sweet Huffy up for dead, but B-Town convinced me to go down there, and even said that she would drive me there.  So we set today as the day.
     Fast forward.  It's today.  It's 4 pm.  It's time.  It's on.  So B-Town, Mikealicious, and I pile into B-Town's car, with me sitting in the back of the SUV ready to spring to action like I am part of the A-Team or something.  We cruise down to the scene, and roll by all drive-by style to see if my bike is there.  Because if I can spot it in the daylight, when it's, you know, light out, I can just go in on a recovery mission under the cover of night.  Hell, if the conditions were right and my bike was like out on the edge, and no one was around, I was prepared to just hop and and pedal like hell, through alleys and yards and driveways until I got back to my place.  I didn't care. 
     There was, however, a small problem.  We couldn't really see anything from the street.  All we could see were wheels and handlebars sticking out from behind the garage and house.  And I can't tell my wheel from another wheel.  I mean, it's not like I have one of those sweet, super-aerodynamic wheels like they have on Olymipic team cycling in the velodrome that I was watching one day from Beijing.  Oh no, I just have the spokes like any normal person would.  So Mikealicious navigates us back into the alley so we can get a better look at what is going on, and we are creepin' like we are in the movie Friday or something.  And there are a shit ton of bikes stashed in this guys back yard.  
     I mean it.  There are bikes of every shape, size, and color, piled in two piles, one leaning on the back of the garage and one leaning on the back of this little shed across the yard.  And when I say that there are biked of every kind, I mean that there are bikes of every kind.  There are mountain bikes, road bikes, BMX bikes, pink bikes with streamers, banana seat bikes with the big fluorescent neon orange triangular flag that sticks like 16 feet up off the back so everyone can see it even if you are riding through the a crowd; yeah, there was one of those in there.  I think that there may have even been a big wheel.  I am not sure.  But there was a plethora of bicycles.  And there was something else in the back yard as well.  It was the guy.  And his little dog, too.  He was just hanging out in the back yard, basking in his pile of bikes.  He wasn't even riding one of them.  He was just standing there with his dog.  It was like he was surveying his bike domain.  So that meant that there wasn't much we could do at that time.  We got a good look but couldn't see anything definitive, so B-Town rolled out of the alley and dropped Mikealicious and myself off downtown.  It seemed that a little night reconnaissance was needed.
     So I rolled out after dark and made my way to his house.  It's not far, so I just wandered.  And I knew that I was in enemy territory because things did not go well from the start.  First of all, he had his minions out.  That's right, Bike Guy has an army.  Who knew?  I didn't.  But they were out in force.  His army consists of a large herd of deer that continually scared the hell out of me as I made my way deeper into enemy territory.  I would be walking along, through the residential neighborhood, and the white-tailed soldiers would be eating people's lawns, blending into the pitch blackness.  I would be mere feet away from them and they would move their heads.  And let me assure you, Company, there is nothing more frightening than seeing something move that you thought was a concrete statue in the dark of night.  So yeah, Bike Guy tried to stop me by throwing his army of hungry deer at me, and he failed.  And I didn't even have my army of grocery store bag boys with me.  I persevered and made it all the way to the center of his territory by myself before I ran into yet another problem.
    I decided to attack the Bike Guy's house from the north, mostly since that is the side that I was on.  So I turned to make my way down the alley and discovered that there was a BMW parked in the very first driveway, running.  It may have been Tyler Burke.  I am not sure.  All I knew was that I couldn't go down the alley if Tyler was standing guard, so I continued on my way all smooth-like.  Because I'm a pro.  So I make my way up the street a little bit and disappear into Trees for Tomorrow.
     For all I knew, Trees for Tomorrow was a place where kids went to learn about forestry issues.  You know, one of those places that you go in elementary school that is neat because you get out of the school but the kind of place the no one is interested in except that one kid who lives way out in the country.  Nobody ever bothered to tell me that it was a sleep over camp.  So when I went strolling up the driveway and came upon a huge bonfire with dozens of screaming children surrounding it, I was momentarily confused.  And a little frightening.  I didn't know what I had gotten myself into.  For a short time I thought that I had stumbled into some sort of non-deer army training center set up by the Bike Guy.  All I knew was that I wanted out of whatever I had gotten myself into.  So I turned on my heel and headed back towards Bike Guy's house.
     When I made it back to the alley that led behind Bike Guy's, the BMW was gone.  So I proceeded down the alley, trying to be quick about my business.  A big fat guy wandering slowly up a back alley in a town of 1500 people in the middle of the night is the kind of thing that tends to draw attention, so I wanted to be like a ninja: in an out without anyone ever knowing that I was there.  So I make my way up to Bike Guy's house - quick and sneaky as can be - and I realize that the back yard is bathed in light from the streetlight in the alley.  This dumbfounds me.  
     I am serious.  I had a lot of trouble handling this.  So I stand there, under the streetlight no less, weighing my options.  Checking out the pile of bikes behind the little shed is out of the question.  They are bathed in light like they are part of the rapture or something.  So I turn my attention to the bigger pile resting on the garage.  And the bikes are in shadow.  Unfortunately all of the yard between myself and the bike pile is lit up like a prison yard at night.  But I thought I could sneak in and check them out if I came around the garage from the front.  It was as I was weighing this option that I noticed the neighbor.  He was in the window of his house.  And he was watching me.  That's when I knew that it was time to go.
     So I slid around to the front of the house and found out four disconcerting things.  1.) The front was bathed in streetlight as well.  2.) It was right across from the Police Station.  I knew this going in, but I had managed to forget that fact between the afternoon and the evening.  3.) Bike Guy's house has tons of windows facing the sidewalk and the garage, from which he may have been looking with any number of stolen telescopes, kaleidoscopes, or any other kind of scopes and 4.) There were a bunch of people going back and forth from a car parked in the street to the house just up the block.  So, to recap, lots of light, lots of authority, lots of windows, and lots of activity in the street.  I may not be the smartest guy in the world, but I am smart enough to know that that is not a recipe for success.  I whipped out my bugle and sounded retreat.  And it would have been good after that if those God-damn deer wouldn't have kept scaring the shit out of me.
    Stuff it, Company.  I can hear you cackling at me.  I can hear you calling me a nancy-boy too.  But I say "Nay!"  I may not have gone in for the kill, but sometimes one has to know when the odds are not favorable.  And I knew.  So I made the smart decision.  I didn't really want to be put up by the County for a night against my will.  Besides, now I have tons of information and can formulate a plan.  Maybe I will have Holly Hoffenagel's husband cut the power and I will sneak in and liberate my bike then.  Maybe I will let the kids out of the yard at the day care next door and then slip in during the resulting commotion and swipe my bike back.  Or maybe I will decide that it's just not worth the risks and I will let him have it.  Or maybe I will shoot bottle rockets at his house just to piss him off.  I'm just kidding, I won't do that.  I hear his mom is nice.  And it's a pretty nice little house.  But I can do something now if I want to because I am armed.  Armed with information.  And that's all you need when it's on.  And it's on.  And that's on the Internet, so it must be true.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

I Am Very Disappointed With The Tyler Burke Experience

     I was very disappointed by the Tyler Burke Experience.  I was one of the leading proponents; I was one of the loudest in announcing its arrival.  Actually, I was pivotal in bringing it to your hometown.  But in the end, The Tyler Burke Experience was nothing special.  Nothing special at all.
     First of all, The Tyler Burke Experience didn't arrive at precisely 3 pm yesterday as was promised.  At five to four Tyler Burke himself called to say that they were ten minutes away.  Well, Tyler Burke, there is no room for The Tyler Burke Experience to happen after 4 pm.  That is the cutoff.  I am sorry.  So The Tyler Burke Experience was rescheduled to this morning at 8 am, right here in my hometown.  And again the Tyler Burke Experience let me down AGAIN.  It didn't show up until almost 10 am, and by then I was pissed.  I was actually running around proclaiming that I was over Tyler Burke, and that I didn't care if The Tyler Burke Experience ever actually showed up.  I didn't even care about who his mysterious friends were.  I was so over Tyler Burke.  I had dropped him like third period French.  All of that, of course, was a lie.  I was still pining to have The Tyler Burke Experience.  I wanted it like a pre-teen wants the Jonas Brothers.
     So you can imagine how excited I was when The Tyler Burke Experience finally arrived.  I was wound up like an ADHD kid who has just snorted fifteen Pixy Sticks.  Maybe that's why I couldn't tell that The Tyler Burke Experience was beginning once it had finally arrived.  I was sitting comfortably at my desk, looking like I was doing some important work, and I heard the door open.  I usually can't see the door open, so when I hear it that is when I know someone has arrived.  So I hear the door and I look up and see a tall, bald man in a black trench coat carrying some sort of leather appointment book or something.  And in behind him slinks a young man, in his twenties, with blonde hair, spiked up of course, wearing carpenter jeans and a Ralph Lauren fleece jacket.  That's when I knew that The Tyler Burke Experience was on.
     But it wasn't on.  It was not on at all.  Turns out I didn't get to have the full Tyler Burke Experience.  I only sort of got side swiped by The Tyler Burke Experience.  First of all, Tyler Burke himself apparently found it more convenient to stand in a corner where I couldn't see him than to actually come around and talk to me.  Yeah, apparently The Big Dave Experience was too much for Tyler Burke.  It sort of makes me feel good to know that I can overpower something as powerful as The Tyler Burke Experience, but it also sort of makes me pissed off that HE WOULDN'T EVEN TALK TO ME!
     Instead I got to talk to Charles, who was apparently the boss in The Tyler Burke Experience.  He couldn't wrap his mind around the concept of a personal check, and he seemed to like the free handouts that were hanging on the wall.  And he was VERY interested in the fluctuations of the stock market.  But what he was not interested in was allowing me to have The Tyler Burke Experience.  That's right, Chuck Burke-blocked me.
     A-Town was the only one who got the full on Tyler Burke Experience.  Actually, he got the full Tyler Burke Experience while B-Town was in the room and she didn't even realize that it was going on.  So B-Town could have had The Tyler Burke Experience in its full, unadulterated glory if she had just turned around in her swivel chair.  But no, it didn't go down like that.  She just kept on keeping on as The Tyler Burke Experience unfolded behind her.  And it was A-Town who was on the receiving end.  He even got to trade business cards with Tyler Burke himself.  And it was from A-Town that I found out about Wayne.
     Yeah, you read that correctly, Company.  Wayne.  Wayne is the third member of The Tyler Burke Experience.  I did not know this because I was apparently not good enough to get the Wayne portion of The Tyler Burke Experience.  Only A-Town and B-Town were given the possibility of all three parts of The Tyler Burke Experience, and B-Town didn't even choose to partake.  I only got the abbreviated version.  Like, when an entertainer goes on a college tour and only does half-show of his shitty songs when he is at the small colleges.  It was like that.  I got the small college version of The Tyler Burke Experience.  And I am pissed.
     But I am not going to let The Tyler Burke Experience get to me.  Oh no.  I am not.  I may have spent weeks of my life honing my skills in anticipation of The Tyler Burke Experience coming to my town, but you know what?  I am done.  DONE!  I care less about The Tyler Burke Experience than I do about how to conjugate verbs in Latin.  So he can come and go, he can avoid me like the plague.  I don't care.  It doesn't matter to me.  The Tyler Burke Experience is dead to me.  And that's on the Internet, so it must be the truth. 

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

The Tyler Burke Experience

     The Tyler Burke Experience is coming to your town! Come one, come all, watch as the greatest American showman in the history of American showmen brings his exotic, breathy review of the greatest curiosities in the history of the known world right to your doorstep! The door from your world into an enchanting world of mystery and excitement opens at precisely 3 o'clock in the afternoon as the Tyler Burke Experience becomes a part of your life. Do not hesitate, purchase your tickets to the most exciting, exotic, and breathtaking show that has ever made its way to your town!
     See Tyler, the man himself, as he dazzles and delights with the greatest tricks ever performed, tricks so daring as to be unbelieveable, even when seen by one's own eyes! Watch as his mysetrious faceless counterparts amaze with their incredible talents of the greatest magnitude! Be delighted by photographs and sketches of the most bizzare and unbeliveable scenes ever imagined by the Western mind!
     Do not forego the The Tyler Burke Experience! Do not be the only one of your peers to miss out on the thrills. Do not be the only one of your peers to miss out on the chills. UNder any circumstances do not let the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to be a part of the excitement, mystery, and exoticism of the Tyler Burke Experience pass you by! Make haste, good citizen, to the Tyler Burke Experience as it makes its one and only stop in your community!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Columbus Day

     I left work today and walked three blocks out of my way, away from my comfortable apartment, to the friendly local post office, in an attempt to pick up my mail.  Since I didn't pick it up on Thursday, or Friday, I am sure that my little tiny post office box is stuffed to the hilt with bills and junk mail and a flier from Trigs.  So it is off to a good start with my new postal carrier.  Although, it's not really a postal carrier since they don't really carry it to me, I have to carry myself there and pick it up myself.  So I guess that I am off to a good start with my new postal worker, I just hope that they don't go all postal on me when I am there to get my messages.
     Anyway, I wander over to the post office to get my mail and I notice a considerable lack of vehicles in the parking lot.  In fact, there is only one, a weird, homemade bicycle that I just seen a man riding about a block earlier.  But here am I, oblivious on a Monday afternoon, attempting to stroll into the back door of the post office that leads down a long hallway into the foyer where the mailboxes are located.  But instead I run into a not-quite young man.  I mean literally run into him.  We are standing face to face and we do it like we are in Ocean's Twelve or something.  He started with "The post office is closed, it's..." and I finished with "...Columbus Day!  I forgot."  And I did.  I saw it all day long on my computer screen, as my Microsoft Outlook Calendar repeatedly told me.  Plus, GH and I had spent the entire day bemoaning the fact that the people out in the townships were rubbing it in our face that they were off.  And yet there we sat, working awfully hard for October.  So all I want to know is...what the hell is with that?
     I work in the government.  The go-vern-ment.  We don't work on holidays.  I mean, I know that Columbus Day is not a major holiday.  It's not like  Thanksgiving or a Flag Day, but it is still as holiday.  And every other governement employee seemed to have the day off.  So why was I there, all dressed up and answering phones and e-mails and generally getting stuff done.  But no one at the post office was getting anything done.  No one in the Department of Homeland Security was getting anything done.  Because they were at home fertilizing the lawn.  Nobody at the Lebanon Township Offices in New Hampshire was getting anything done.  Because they were having a picnic with their family in a field of wildflowers.  I mean, they weren't in bloom or anything because it's October, but if it were the summertime they would be.  Right now they are just sticks or stems or whatever.  But they people were still out there doing their thing.  And I was inside typing memos.  And reading online about how warm it was outside.  Cloudy, yes, but warm nonetheless.  
     I don't know, maybe I am spoiled.  Maybe I just want what is coming to me because of the years I spent working when we got no holidays off.  I am sure that those of you who still work in that situation are pissed at me right now.  And that's okay.  I understand.  I should shut the hell up and be grateful.  But I work for the government.  The only people who should be getting more time off are the people who work for the Catholic universities.  They get every holiday and just about every saint's day and feast day off.  Oh man is it nuts.  But I am supposed to be second on the list.  I know that Columbus Day is a fake holiday but let's be honest, if one government worker get the day off the rest should too.  And that must be true; it's on the Internet.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Democracy: Overruled

     First of all, let me say that I wanted to name this post Chinese Democracy because I think that is one of the coolest names for anything, ever.  Unfortunately, that name has been wasted on a Guns n' Roses album that will never be released in my lifetime.  So instead, Democracy: Overruled.  Because sometimes that is how it has to be.  That is why there is martial law.  That is why Abraham Lincoln suspended the writ of habeas corpus.  That is why your boss asks everyone what they want for lunch and they all pick Laotian takeout but then the boss orders pizza anyway.  And that is why I am overruling the results of the latest Big Dave and Company Reader Poll brought to you by Smuckers.  
     I am sorry, Company, but that is just how it has to be.  You know that usually I am happy to post a poll and then blindly follow whatever option that you choose, no matter how retarded it may be.  And in the future, more often than not, I will be happy to do that again.  But in this instance I am not.  First of all, for posterity, let's review the poll.  The question was: What tag line should I use to end every post with?  A pretty good question if you ask me.  Well here are the options that you had to choose from with the number of votes for each in parenthesis:

a.)  "And that's how it is."  (0)

b.)  "Because Big Dave says so."  (1)

c.)  "At least that's what your mom told me last night."  (2)

d.)  "And that's the truth as I made it up."  (1)

e.)  Don't use a tag line, that is retarded.  (2)

So that was the poll.  And I almost went with the results.  In the result of a tie I get to cast the tie breaking vote and I would have just picked the last one and not used a tag line.  I regretted even floating the idea after I posted the poll.  So in a way I am glad you confirmed that using a tag line is lame.
     And they are lame.  Because, in a way, they handcuff a writer.  You have to wind your story around until it ends at a prescribed point, and even if you have a better ending you are screwed.  So that is why I was against it.  But then, on about day four of six in the poll I thought of a great tag line to use that I hadn't put on the poll.  So that is why I am doing what I want regardless of what you voted on.  Because I have a sweet tag line of my own.  And because, honestly, democracy isn't really democracy when it's one person initiating and operating it.  And that's on the Internet, so it has to be true.