Monday, December 31, 2012

Happy New Year 2013

     Since it is New Year's Eve, and if I know you Company you will be drunk pretty quick, we just wanted to jump in and wish you all a safe and enjoyable New Year's Eve, and a happy, healthy, and prosperous New Year in 2013 from everyone here at Big Dave and Company to you and yours.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

College Bowl Games We Wish They'd Play

Some time ago, we talked about Christmas movies that we wish they would make.  Well, in that spirit, and since the college football bowl season is in full swing, here are some ideas for five new Bowl games that we wish they would play:

Pins McGee Memorial New Year Holiday Football Extravaganza - This bowl game will be sponsored by the one and only Pins McGee, who is Big Dave's personal bowling coach.  It will feature the second place team from the Sun Belt Conference and the ninth place team from the ACC.  Despite being named after the New Year's holiday, it will be played on December 12th, immediately after the end of the regular season - and will be the bowl played the longest time from actual New Year's Day.  This bowl game will be played in Little Rock, Arkansas, a city which every 20-something athlete dreams of visiting as a reward.

The BCS Major Conference Money Bowl brought to you by MacGregor Athletic Wear- This bowl game exists so 6-6 UCLA can play 7-5 North Carolina State, even though neither of these teams really should be in a bowl game.   This game also exists so that the good folks at MacGregor Athletic Wear can have their name on a bowl game.  This game also exists because ESPN is willing to pay the schools more money than you will make in five years at your job just to show up and play.  It will be held on December 18th at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri, another city where every college football player wants to go as a "reward" for their "good" season.

Fila Presents the Diamond Solar Salt South Pacific Football Classic - This will be the third of three bowl games held annually at Honolulu's Aloha Stadium, a venue that is rarely even filled for the other two.  Featuring the third-highest ranked independent team and the highest-ranked team with a .500 record, the only reason for having this bowl game is so that the administration and boosters of both South Dakota State and South Carolina can go to Hawai'i for free.  This game will be shown on CBS College Sports - which is available on approximately three cable systems nationwide and in parts of central Croatia.

The Fiesta Bowl Play for Pay for Play Bowl - This bowl game was developed by previous Fiesta Bowl administrations that have since been found to have been involved with some major financial violations.  In this game, two teams who have paid the highest amount to the Fiesta Bowl committee get to meet on the last weekend of the regular season.  The winner of the game gets the first opportunity to pay a bribe to the Fiesta Bowl so that the Fiesta Bowl will pick them in the BCS selection process.  This game will be aired exclusively by ESPN2 and marketed as "Brawl for the Bowl."  It will be played at Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe, Arizona, the former home of the Fiesta Bowl.

The Jimmy Dean Breakfast Sausage All American Football Victory Bowl - This game is played every year in Nashville, Tennessee and features the two Canadian college football teams with the best records.  The game follows Canadian football rules, features Canadian teams, plays the Canadian anthem before the start, and all tickets must be purchased with Canadian dollars.  Interestingly enough, this game is not attended by any of the students, faculty, or boosters of the teams which are playing in it.  100% of the ticket sales go to the Jimmy Dean corporation and the other "corporate champions" who each agree to sponsor one section of the stadium.  It is held in Nashville because their Convention and Visitors Bureau put together the most attractive hotel packages.  This game will be aired by ESPN, unless there is an Ohio State or Oklahoma intrasquad scrimmage being played at the same time.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas, Virginias

Editor's Note: This is my favorite Christmas thing, and it is the most reprinted newspaper editorial of all time.  It is the unsigned editorial of Francis Pharcellus Church of the New York Sun that he published on September 21, 1897 in response to a letter from 8-year old Virginia O'Hanlon, who wanted to know if there really was a Santa Claus because some of her little friends say there was none.

     Virginia, your little friends are wrong.  They have been affected by the skepticism of a skeptical age.  They do not believe except they see.  They think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds.  All minds, Virginia, whether they be men's or children's, are little.  In this great universe of ours man is a mere insect, an ant, in his intellect, as compared with the boundless world about him, as measured by the intelligence capable of grasping the whole of truth and knowledge.
     Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus.  He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to your life its highest beauty and joy.  Alas! how dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus.  It would be as dreary as if there were no Virginias.  There would be no childlike faith then, no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence.  We should have no enjoyment, except in sense and sight.  The eternal light with which childhood fills the world would be extinguished.
     Not believe in Santa Claus!  You might as well not believe in fairies!  You might get your papa to hire men to watch in all the chimneys on Christmas Eve to catch Santa Claus, but even if they did not see Santa Claus coming down, what would that prove?  Nobody sees Santa Claus, but that is no sign that there is no Santa Claus.  The most real things in the world are those that neither children nor men can see.  Did you ever see fairies dancing on the lawn?  Of course not, but that's no proof that they are not there.  onbody can conceive or imagine all the wonders there are unseen and unseeable in the world.
     You may tear apart the baby's rattle and see what makes the noise inside, but there is a veil covering the unseen world which not the strongest man, nor even the united strength of all the strongest men that ever lived, could tear apart.  Only faith, fancy, poetry, love, romance, can push aside that curtain and view and picture the supernal beauth and glory beyond.  Is it all real? Ah, Virginia, in all this world there is nothing else real and abiding.
     No Santa Claus!  Thank God! he lives, and he lives forever.  A thousdan years from now, Virginia, nay, ten times ten thousand years from now, he will continue to make glad the heart of childhood.

Merry Christmas to all of you and yours, Company.  May your holiday - whatever holiday you chose to observe - be filled with comfort and joy. 

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Christmas Thoughts

    Some anonymous reader told me the other day that I was the "bright spot in [their] day," which I though was one of the nicest unsolicited things that anyone has ever said about me, especially seeing as how I haven't sat down an written a blog for you, Company, in over a month.  Okay, that's a lie.  Just under a month.  Okay, that's a lie.  I have put pen to paper many times in the last month, due to what I feel is the romanticism of the pen scratching across the paper, but at it turns out no matter how hard I wedge those pieces of paper into every available oriface of my computer - the disc drive, the microphone, the firewire port, the USB ports, etc. - it just won't convert itself to a blog.  And I have a Mac, which according to TV are supposed to do just about everything under the sun.  Not that apparently.  So now all of those wonderful recordings of my thoughts, feelings, etc, are lost to the ether since my computer can't convert my handwritten text to a blog through osmosis, and since I can't find an Unpaid Intern around anywhere to do the typing for me.
      I am actually, as I type, sitting here in the empty Gigabyte Systems studio where we used to record the almost-award winning Big Dave and Company Podcast.  Mike-a-licious is away on one of this corporate funded "Technology Retreats" in Hawai'i, and while he is gone I am turning the studio into a giant saltwater aquarium, against his wishes.  That will teach him to go to Hawai'i on the company dime.  So here I am supervising construction and hiding from the Christmas holiday and I thought, maybe I should type out a blog post for a change.
     I will tell you why I dislike the Christmas holiday.  I like many aspects of it, but the ones that I DETEST always outweigh the positives.  First of all, I am sick of Christmas because it has been going on since October.  And we all know my stance regarding the timing of Christmas.  And if you don't, you can read about it here.  So by the time we are months in I am sick of it.  It is like bowling in that it goes on forever and I am afraid that it is going to start next year on like January 8th or something.

      I also hate Christmas shopping.  That is the truth.  If I could get my hands on one of those Staples "Easy Buttons" around Christmastime everyone I know would be getting graph paper or maybe a hole punch.  But not a three-hole punch, this isn't Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous.  The problem with the Christmas shopping is not the Christmas part, it is more the shopping aspect.  This might surprise you to know that I am a boy, and beyond that I am a boy who does not like shopping.  I do not shop, I buy.  Unless I am purchasing a boat or something.  Then I might shop around.  But in general, I go in with a list of what I want to buy and I buy it and I get the hell out of Dodge.  At 3 AM so there are not a lot of people in the store.  And the store is a 7-11.  But 7-11 gifts don't cut it for the Christmas holiday.  And Boston Store is not open at 3 AM, except for Black Friday and I am usually holed up in a bunker at that time.  I love the giving part (and the receiving part too), but the shopping sucks all of the fun out of the giving for me.  It just makes it a hectic, stressful mess of awfulness.
I would never make my house look like this but I always
hope that one on my block does.
     I do, however, like the lights.  That is one of my favorite parts of the holiday.  I am not a big fan of those who have like fifty moving part decorations all over their lawn.  And I myself go for the understated string of lights on the eve line sort of decorating, but my seceret guilty pleasure is that I love the houses with a million lights on them.  You know, like those people down the block who believe that quantity is the key to winning the neighborhood light contest.  I love that shit.  Clark Griswold's house makes me smile on the inside, even as I appear outwardly upset about the decadence.  The more the better I say - for someone else's house but not for mine - and I believe that the electric company would agree with that sentiment.  I also like that all the small towns and big cities around the area trot out Christmas decorations for their light poles, etc.  In my little town they put giant lit up snowflakes on all of the streetlight poles, including one right in front of my house that is like a giant beacon for people coming to the Worldwide Headquarters, except that there is one on every light pole so you can get them mixed up pretty easily.  But I like it nonetheless.
     Anyway, those are just some thoughts as we move towards the Christmas holiday.  Safe passage to those of you traveling around for the holiday, and thank you to those of you who will have to spend the holiday away working to the rest of us don't have to.  Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving

    So it is Thanksgiving Day in the United States, folks, and since the Worldwide Headquarters is located in the United States, I do the United States Thanksgiving now as opposed to the Canadian version which was celebrated back in October.  Happy Belated Thanksgiving Canada.  And Happy Now Thanksgiving United States.  I am sure that everyone has things that they are thankful for, and so do I Dear Company.  And since I don't care a whole lot about what you are thankful for, let's talk about what I am thankful for:

-  I am thankful that the State put a four lane, divided highway between the  residence section of the Worldwide Headquarters and the office section, so when I was stuck with about fifteen other locals behind an ancient, out-of-town hunter who was driving very slowly through the fog on unfamiliar roads.  Because when we got to the four lane section it was like someone opened the bathroom drain and all the locals, like me, were able to get to work.

-  Speaking of hunters, I am thankful for all the wolves and coyotes that are around the Worldwide Headquarters, because they kept all those hunters from coming around because there are no deer in the area, and quite frankly, there are some people I know who are given a license to use a gun in public and that deeply disturbs me.

-  I am thankful for the work of Benjamin Henry Latrobe, who designed beautiful buildings that inspire the mind and soul

-  I am thankful that Mike-a-licious dropped all those OSHA complaints against me, because now I can afford to fix the fence and keep the Unpaid Interns from escaping all the time, in lieu of being OSHA compliant.

-  I am thankful for monkeys; an awful lot of people seem to like monkeys

-  I am thankful for all the people who work towards world peace, but I am dismayed because it seems like so many more are working towards world war.

-  I am thankful for that feeling that you get when you are sitting in the front of a roller coaster in the freezing rain, because even though it hurts like a bitch and you come out with your entire face covered in little red pinprick sized marks, it ultimately feels good and you can wear it like a badge of honor.

- I am thankful for you, Company, for without you I would not be a media mogul with an empire that spans all the time zones, even the ones that were skipped over for some reason or those weird ones that are on the half or quarter hour.

- I am seriously and completely thankful for all of those who serve in the military or public safety sectors, who work to hard to uphold law, order, ideals, and the American way of life, and who selflessly help others and always seem to get crap for it.

     I am thankful for a ton of other things too, but there is no time.  It is Thanksgiving Day, and it is time for some turkey.  Here is hoping that you and yours have a safe and enjoyable Thanksgiving everyone!  Even Canada, where it is just November 22.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Happy Veterans Day

     So here we are on Sunday, November 11, 2012 and it is Veteran's Day.  I am not going to write a big long post but I am going to say this: Thank you to every current or former member of our Armed Forces and to all of their families.  You willingly undertook one of the most thankless jobs in our nation for the benefit of all of the rest of us.  It doesn't matter if you sat at a deck for four years in the middle of a Nevada desert, you were still willing to serve.  So thank you.  May you all get all of your wishes today, and may each end every one of you who is overseas come home safely.  Thank you.
     Also, I want to issue a quick challenge to all of you out there who consider yourselves "lete haxors:" hack into the e-mail system and send a mass e-mail to everyone with a .mil e-mail address that says Thank You on behalf of America.  Put your energies and talents to good use for a change.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

'Twas the Night Before Horseshit

     Are you a single person, Company?  Or maybe just someone with a potty mouth?  Well if so, then I am willing to bet all of Mike-a-licious' paycheck (and believe me, I have wagered it on less than this) that somewhere along the way you have gotten the dirty look from a mother or father of a toddler when you slipped up and swore in front of them.  You know, because you are a terrible person who forgot there was a small child in the room.
     The reason that parents, etc. do that kind of stuff is because children of that age are incredibly impressionable.  You know, because that is the time of their life during which they learn everything.  Important things like social interaction, language, and gymnastics.  The parents - who don't want their children to swear even though all the popular kids are the ones who swear - get on your derelict ass because they are afraid that their astute little kids will hear your swear words and repeat them.
     Now, to continue the longest introduction in the history of ever, I don't have kids of my own, but I believe that the kids learn a lot more from their parents' reaction to the swear word than they do from the word itself.  But I could be wrong.  So in my mind you are sort of taking a 50/50 chance - either the kids will see you flip out and make the connection that the word is wrong, or they will see that it will instantly get them attention if you utter it.  But that is what you do when you are a parent.  But I digress.  The point here is that kids are really only going to pick up things from certain sources, so this maniacal quest by some parents to rid the world of ever potential negative connotation that might be seen by children is just a ridiculous, obscene waste of time.
     It has reached a new height recently because a Canadian publisher named Pamela McColl - whose books and publication you should no longer purchase or support, by the way - has changed the poem "A Visit from St. Nicholas" to remove two lines which reference Santa smoking.  Yeah, you read that correctly, and if you are not sure that you did take the time to read it again.  The two lines read "The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,/ And the smoke, it encircled his head like a wreath."  If Clement Clarke Moore, who wrote wrote the poem in 1823, would kick Ms. McColl if he had the chance.
This is more like the image of Santa Claus that always pops
into my head.  Strange, no pipe here.
     First of all, I have heard that poem a million times (so have you, it starts "Twas the night before Christmas, and all though the house...") and I don't remember the part about the smoke.  And I always get it confused with "The Grinch Who Stole Christmas" and suddenly Cindy Lou Who is in it.  But I digress.  I feel that this is absolutely stupid and unnecessary.  I am going to put this in all caps to make sure it sticks: NO CHILD HAS EVER TAKEN UP SMOKING BECAUSE SANTA SMOKED IN "A VISIT FROM ST NICHOLAS."  That is a truth.  I guarantee it.  Kids take up smoking because their parents do it.  Kids take up smoking because their parents tell them not to do it.  Or, 99% of the time they take up smoking because other kids are smoking and pressure them into it.  No because Santa does it.  Besides, to most children, Santa doesn't smoke anyway, because he isn't smoking in modern Christmas decorations or the Kiss Saves Santa Christmas Special.  That is the truth.  The name Santa Claus always conjures up certain images in my head - and yours too - and your cousin's - and the guy at the bus stop - and I would suspect that none of them come from that poem.  It comes from the placemats that my mom used to put out at the holidays.  It comes from some sort of animated Chistmas special.  It comes from a storybook you had as a child, or that giant blow up Santa decoration that is on your neighbor's front lawn.
     So the editing was unnecessary, at least in my mind.  But in the spirit of this idiotic sort of "cleanse everything from life that might be slightly harmful to children and be totally understanding and politically correct about everything" mindset, I have decided to take it a step further and note every line of the poem that needs to be changed or removed, and for what reason.  And please remember that this is all supposed to be tongue-in-cheek.

'Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house
All children in the world do not celebrate Christmas, some are Jewish or Chinese or agnostic, so they should not be excluded.  Also, some children live in apartments and it is wrong to teach them that living in a house is the only okay place to live

Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse.
This could lead children to believe that everyone dies when they go to sleep, which could lead to unspeakable childhood trauma.  It also teaches them that mice are the small and insignificant and could lead mice to feel bad.

The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
This leads to misuse of expensive clothing, and that is not a lesson that we want children to be taught.

In hopes that Saint Nicholas soon would be there.
Youth should not be encouraged to just sit around and wait for things to be brought for them, they should learn the lesson to be innovative and work hard for the things they want.

The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
Children should have their own beds.  If you sleep with a sibling or parent or in a crib still you are weird.  Also, your bed should be a race car or rocket ship.  Okay, I added that last part.

While visions of sugar-plums danced in their heads;
What the hell is a sugar-plum?  Children won't know what those are and they will feel bad about themselves.

And mamma in her 'kerchief, and I in my cap,
Children might think that if your parents don't wear traditional pyjamas they are strange, and by extension the whole family is.  This could lower self esteem and lead to problems with social interaction.

Had just settled down for a long winter's nap;
Children might feel that if your parents work second or third shift they are strange and should be feared or scorned.

When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
Again, it is strange if you live in an apartment or a house with no lawn, even if it is one of those row houses from San Francisco like in the beginning of Full House

I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.
Children could come to believe that it is not okay to be scared when you hear things outside; you should immediately run out and investigate without any sort of protection.

Away to the window I flew like a flash,
This could lead a child to infer that people can fly, and they might try to jump off of something and injure themselves.  This line might also serve to push children towards DC Comics - publishers of The Flash - at the expense of other comic publishers.

Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash.
This line teaches children that vandalism is okay, and that their belongings and surroundings can be treated roughly instead of being taken care of properly.

As the politically correct crowd interprets this poem in their
way, this man is an alcoholic meth-head who snots coke,
invades homes and mistreats animals.

The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow
This line contains the word breast. Enough said.

Gave the lustre of mid-day to objects below,
This line almost contains the word lust.  Enough said.

When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
This infers the appearance of Santa as if he were a ghost or otherworldly being, which could lead to the forcing of specific religious or cultural ideas on children.

But a miniature sleigh, and eight tiny reindeer,
Any use of animals for manual labor should not be presented to children as acceptable as it is cruel and inhumane, especially when the animals all have an obvious genetic deficiency.

With a little old driver, so lively and quick,
This line encourages speeding and unlawfulness.  The driver should be lively and within posted speed limits.

I knew in a moment it must be Saint Nick.
Some religions do not have recognized saints; this line obviously favors and endorses belief systems which do.

More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,
Nobody knows what "coursers" are, and it is both dangerous and illegal to tamper with endangered eagles my measuring their velocity in flight.  This encourages disrespect for nature and law.

And he whistles, and shouted, and called them by name:
This line teaches impressionable youth that it is okay to be loud in a residential area in the middle of the night, just as much  as Santa having a pipe encourages them to smoke.

"Now, Dasher! now, Dancer! now, Prancer and Vixen!  On Comet! on Cupid! on, Donder and Blitzen!"
These are all stripper names.

"To the top of the porch! to the top of the wall! Now dash away! dash away! dash away all!"
This line obviously condones and presents a positive impression of trespassing and fleeing the scene of a crime.

As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
This line potentially could lead children to believe that it is safe and even fun to be outside during dangerous weather phenomena.

When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky,
Impressionable children could take this line to mean that flying is possible when a collision is imminent.

So up to the house-top the coursers they flew,
Children could construe that this portion of the poem condones trespassing and climbing on dangerous roofs.

With a sleigh full of toys, and Saint Nicholas too.
Is this sleigh properly registered with Dept of Transportation authorities?  And again, religion.

And then, in a twinkling, I heard on the roof
This line can stay.

The prancing and pawing of each little hoof.
This line could lead children to believe that it is okay to put household pets and other animals on the roof of their home, thereby creating a danger for the home, animals, and people in the area.

As I drew in my head, and was turning around,
Engaging in more than one motion at a time with a maturing body could lead to permanent physical deformities.

Down the chimney Saint Nicholas came with a bound.
This is an obvious case of the poem condoning breaking and unlawful entry of a domicile.

He was dressed in all fur from his head to his foot.
Did you really think PETA would let this line slide?  They are throwing paint on Clement Clark Moore's grave as you read this.

And his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot.
This line give the appearance that poor personal hygiene is acceptable, and could cause children to revolt against their baths across the land.

A bundle of toys he had flung on his back,
At this point the poem promotes consumerism and leads to the belief that only possession can bring happiness.

And he looked like a peddler just opening his pack.
Peddling is against the law in many communities.

His eyes - how they twinkled! his dimples how merry!
Santa is clearly on crystal meth at this point in the poem.

His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry!
The cherry-like nose seems to implicate that Santa has used large amounts of alcohol for an extended period of time, and we don't want our children all to become alcoholics, now do we?

His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow,
This line evokes images of something from a horror film and is obviously potentially damaging to impressionable children.

And the beard of his chin was white as the snow.
This line will be removed through the sponsorship of the makers of "Just for Men" who do not want children to believe that it is okay to have grey or white hair, including facial hair.

The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,
And the smoke it encircled his head like a wreath.
These are the lines that Ms. McColl removed because somewhere there is a 5-year-old trying to buy tobacco apparently.

He had a broad face and a little round belly,
This line could lead a child to believe that obesity is acceptable and healthy.

That shook, when he laughed, like a bowlful of jelly.
Again with the obesity.

He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf.
Still with the obesity.

And I laughed when I saw him, in spite of myself.

A wink of his eye and a twist of his head,
I am pretty sure this is sexual harassment in some way, shape, or form.

Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread.
Children should be no means be taught that they should trust strangers who invade their homes.

He spoke not a word, but when straight to his work,
How rude!  It is impolite to not acknowledge someone and greet them politely.

And filled all the stockings; then turned with a jerk,
I just don't trust this line at all.

And laying his finger aside of the nose,
Now Santa is apparently doing coke.

And giving the nod, up the chimney he rose.
Again, children could come to believe that they can fly, which they cannot unless in an airplane, hot air balloon, or helicopter.

He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,
This line can stay, too.

And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.
Reindeer cannot generally fly, so Santa has just forced these particular ones off the roof and probably to their death, thereby promoting animal cruelty.  Sometimes the politically incorrect or dangerously impressionable lines can be hard to spot.

But I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight,
Shouting as you drive around town is unacceptable.

"Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good-night!"

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Bitches and Hose

     There are some things in this life that people simple are not good at.  The girl at the hardware store is not good at counting out change.  Donald Trump is not good at doing his hair.  And we all know about my persistent struggles with pancakes.  But there is something else with which I am constantly struggling, in every situation that I have to deal with it.


I hate them.  They are ugly little pink bitches.  Get it?  Bitches and hose.  HAHAHAHA!  But seriously, I am dangerously and sadly deficient in dealing with average, everyday hose in just about every situation.  I came to this sad but not sudden realization just the other day.
This is how my yard looks every day.
    First I was getting the Worldwide Headquarters ready for winter.  In fact, I am always getting someplace ready for winter, what with my giant stable of properties in all latitudes and longitudes of the Earth, it is always winter somewhere.  So anyway, here I was at the Worldwide Headquarters trying to remove the hoses and put them away for the season, and it was a colossal failure.  Every time I try to wind up the hose, or even loop it over the little $4 hose reel attached to the side of the WWHQ it always ends up a travesty.  First of all, I end up dirty and wet without fail. Second of all, the loops are never, ever anything close to the same size.  And lastly, it always twists and kinks and knots itself in such a way that even Maniac McGee wouldn't be able to get it undone. 
     I always thought it was just my garden hose.  Okay, garden hoses.  But then I began to notice that it was happening to me all the time.  I took the vehicle down to the friendly local gas station to put some air in the tires, and the friendly local gas station had this fancy pants new winding air hose system, with all these rollers so that the house would spool and unspool neatly and correctly in any direction.  It even had a sort of spring loaded feature that was supposed to do the winding for you when you gave it a yank.  I managed to even screw that one up.  First of all, the spring mechanism never worked for me so whenever I would yank on the hose more would simply come out.  And it never spooled up correctly for me either, because even with all the high technology I still managed to get the hose wrapped all around the spool, the  building, itself, etc.  I am so bad with the hoses that I can't even get the idiot hose to work right.
     I fear that there is no hope for me.  I am sure that I could spend a lot of time and money forking over for someone to patiently teach me the physics and mechanics of hose reeling.  A hose handler maybe.  Okay, that sounded perverted.  Maybe a hose whisperer who knew all its tricks.  Or maybe I could just stuff my garden hoses in a basket and get some sort of snake charmer with a recorder to make it dance and sort it out.  Hey - that might be kind of cool.
     I do believe that there is one final frontier that might save me, but I am a little afraid to try it.  They make lay flat hoses - like firefighters use - that sort of lay flat when not filled with pressurized water, then you just roll them up like shoelaces or a Fruit by the Foot.  The problem is that I am sure that I will find a way to f- those up too, any they will end up knotted and kinked and broken just like the rest of the hose in my life.  And then where do you go?  Where in the hose world do you go when you have nowhere else to turn?  I am too afraid to find out, so I suppose that I will just keep soldering on along being forever frustrated when it comes time to water the garden until I can find an innovative new way to wind up the hose.
     Now maybe if I lay it on the ground and wrap it around this wheel rim...

Monday, September 24, 2012

An Open Letter to My Dog

Dear Dog,

     You are a very special boy, and I love you so.  I like to give you lots of kisses.  And I like to pet you so nicely.  That being said, we need to talk about the humping.
     I am not sure when you began this program of humping every other dog that you are around, but you really need to cut it out, for a number of reasons.  But we will get to those in a minute.  First off, I have to tell you that this humping behavior kind of came at me out of the blue.  When you were living in the doggy foster home, you didn't seem to take the other dog there to the Humpolympics.  During the times I saw the two of you out there in the yard or in the house you seemed to be just fine.  And the foster house lady did not say anything about it either.  So either it is a new behavior that you have developed recently, or it was just a really well-kept secret.  Anyway, the point of all of this is that I would appreciate it if you could not hump things under my watch if you weren't humping things under other peoples' watch.
     Now, to the reasons why the humping is bad.  Fist of all, it is terribly embarrassing.  At least it is for me.  I once saw you attempt to take a shit in the middle of the major highway intersection in our town, so I know that you have no shame.  None at all.  But I do a little bit.  And you incessant humping of other dogs is embarrassing to me.  Nobody like it, least of all the other dogs.  All of my friends make fun of me and pretty soon they aren't going to allow you to go with me when I go to their houses.  Or you will have to stay in the car, so I hope you like it in there.
     Second, you do not have any sense of appropriate timing.  Case in point:  the other day when you were doing it on the FIVE MONTH OLD unspayed puppy.  See, there was this sort of early-Halloween-Trick-or-Treat for the kids going on, and while we were handing out candy to the little kids, you were right behind us attempting to have your way with the puppy.  Granted, she seemed to be having no trouble with it, but your timing couldn't have been worse.  The old lady leading her grandchild around gave me one of the dirtiest looks I have ever received.  All because of your lack of appropriate timing knowledge.
     Yeah, the biggest thing about your humping is that you simply just don't know what you are doing.  Now, I know that most of us don't have the greatest of looks on our faces while we are going to town, but yours is quite frankly the stupidest look I have ever seen.  You have this look that says "I don't know what I am doing but am kind of glad to be doing it" and you are usually drooling a little bit.  Sick pervert.  Also, you generally fail to always hump your intended target.  Don't get me wrong, you get them more often than not, but sometimes you start when there is nothing around to hump.  You seem to hump the air an awful lot if the victim moves away or something.  One time you humped a bar stool too...I am not sure what that was all about.
     Lastly, it is a pretty fruitless enterprise for you, because you don't have the parts to make anything happen.  It is not just that you are shooting blanks...they took your ammo clip away a long time ago, okay?  So nothing will ever come from it other than that you will be really tired and I will be really embarrassed. Besides, I always catch you in the act and I always stop you.  If I had a hose with me while you were doing it I would turn that on you, but I always find a way to break it up, which invariably gets you scolded in front of everyone.  And that is not good for either of us.
     So I guess that I am asking is that you please knock it off with all the humping that you are doing when around other dogs, okay?  That would really make life easier for the both of us.  Thank you bud.


- Big Dave

Friday, September 21, 2012

Get Drunk and Fire Away

This is coming Powder Springs.
    A lot of people have done a lot of stupid fucking things in life, Company.  A lot of groups have enacted stupid fucking plans or put stupid programs into place.  For instance: PETA's stupid plan to throw paint on peoples' fur coats.  That doesn't do anything proactive because it just causes the rich people who have furs (and probably have them insured) to go out and buy new furs.  And you know what that means.  Anyway, back to the lecture at hand...a couple in Georgia has proposed an idea that sounds just horrible, but maybe won't be as bad as you think.  They have proposed - and been given approval to build - an indoor gun range that includes a full bar and lounge.
     Truth be told, the only thing that really surprises me about this is that it isn't in Texas.  Unless of course these already litter the countryside there.  At first glance, this is a terrible, horrible, no good very bad idea.  Especially when one considers the housing development going on next door.  I am not sure that there has been a scientific study done on this subject, but any quick glance at the evening news or any American newspaper can easily confirm that guns and alcohol generally do not mix well.  No one has ever pulled their piece on someone in an argument over say, how short the grass should be cut, and popped a cap in the other person, and then at their sentencing said "If only I had been piss drunk then maybe cooler heads would have prevailed."  Again - maybe in Texas.  I mean, look at how mixing guns and alcohol worked for the people in the Old West.  You see it in every movie - a bunch of guys with ten gallon hats and weird handkerchief ascots sitting around a saloon drinking whiskey and suddenly there is an argument and before long someone is getting thrown through those swinging doors that I never understood because they don't really keep anyone out OR in or provide any sort of meaningful protection (by the way, being a swinging door maker in the Old West was probably one of the most lucrative trades there could be; every town had at least three bars and those doors were getting busted like every other night).  Anyway, once the guy went through the doors or the window where did everyone end up?  Drunk in the street firing guns at one another.
     And is exactly what all the folks in Powder Springs, Georgia (population 13,940 and located just west of Atlanta) were worried about.  Gunfights in the streets.  And those weird handkerchief ascots.  Those things are messed up.  So as would be expected, the area residents were none to happy with the idea.  They didn't seem to mind the $3.5 million indoor shooting range in their backyards, but they - like you and I - balked at the idea of a gun range that served alcohol.
     So why then, did 80% of the Powder Springs City Council vote to allow this seemingly ill-conceived project to proceed?  They did it because the owners of the proposed club have included one special safety feature: swipe cards.  All of the members of the club would have swipeable ID cards that would get them into the building, into the gun range, into the locker rooms, etc.  The plan for the club would be that members would have to use their swipe cards to order drinks, and once they have ordered a drink their swipe card would not allow them into the gun range for rest of the day.  That was enough to make the City Council pull the trigger - pun intended - on this project.
     And that sounds like a pretty good plan.  I would be okay with that in my neighborhood.  And I would suspect that 99.99% of people who are going to join the gun club are going to be smart and responsible enough to not drink a fifth of Wild Turkey and then go pop off a few rounds.  I really believe that.  The people who are going to irresponsibly get drink and indiscrimitaely shoot off weapons are going to do it out in the woods behind their house.  Here are what the .01% are going to do at the club:
     Billy Joe and Jimmy Bobb are going to join the club and get their swipe cards.  On Monday, Billy Joe is going to swipe his card to buy all the drinks.  Then Jimmy Bobb is going to swipe his card to get them into the range.  On Tuesday, Jimmy Bobb is going to swipe his card to buy all the drinks and Billy Joe will swipe them into the range.  Mark my words...someone will try that pretty quickly.  Now I am sure that the owners have figured that into their plan, and it will be pretty easy for the staff to keep tabs on who is doing what.  But mark my words...someone will try.  And if they succeed then shit will go down.  Let the blasting begin!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

International Talk Like a Pirate Day

Arrrgggghhh...shive me timbers, matey.  Today be International Talk Like a Pirate Day.  If you do not speak the language of the sea, I be authorized by sword or lead to take from you all your gold dabloons and send ye to Davy Jones's locker. So lower the mainsails and all hands on deck for International Talk Like a Pirate Day, and if ye housewench won't comply TIE HER TO THE MIZZENMAST!  But ye be warned, 'tis a dangerous wind that blows with that one, for tomorrow ye housewench may banish ye to the deserted island that is the couch, or worse send ye to walk the plank. But for today, all aboard the Jolly Roger, and send ye out to plumder from the Queen's fleet, for it's INTERNATIONAL TALK LIKE A PIRATE DAY!

Sunday, September 09, 2012

The Oval of Insanity

     As people in the Western world became more and more enamored with the automobile, a problem developed regarding the license plates on all the cars that we were driving, especially in Europe, where there are approximately 38,000 separate countries crammed into an area approximately the size of Wyoming.  That might be a bit of exaggeration, but you get the point.  What was happening over there was that authorities were having trouble identifying where motorists were from because most of the countries had really similar looking license plates.  So somewhere along the way at the United Nations they got together and enacted the Conventions on Road Traffic that required that motorists put these oval nationality stickers on the back of their cars that had a unique code for their country of origin if they are going to travel from nation to nation.  If you were from Germany you had one with a "D", from Poland a "PL", or "BC" if you were from the Belgian Congo.  Now, these were exceedingly rare in the US, okay?  Mostly because most of us only went to Canada, if anywhere, and we all had unique license plates on our vehicles issued by the state we lived in.  But in Europe they were all over.
     Well now they are all over here - sort of - and I couldn't be more pissed off about it.  It began over here mostly with Volkswagens.  There was always some douche supreme who had one with a "D" on it on their Diesel Rabbit, or some idiot with a VW Bus that had it because they thought they were cool and they were cultured and progressive and European when really they were just unemployed and pretentious.  And then there was the guy with the BMW who had the Euro-style plate on the front and the oval sticker on the back.  And then it happened.  Someone decided to put a cheeky code in it for a vacation destination.  Now they are everywhere.
     The first one that I noticed with regularity was "OBX" for the Outer Banks of North Carolina, so I am going to blame the Outer Banks for this utterly stupid fucking fad of putting a million of these things on the back of your Suburban or Outback or whatever.  I don't give a flying fuck about the fact that you have been to Lake Superior, so I don't need to see a while oval with "LS" on the back of your car, especially since officially "LS" denotes that you are from Lesotho, and has been since 1967.  I don't care that you have "NYC" in an oval because you think New York is neat, even though you have never been there, or that you have a "VT" sticker because you either live in Vermont or go to Virginia Tech.  Or that you went past a place in Duluth once that sold them so you bought one that says "BWCA" because you like the Boundary Waters Canoe Area.
     No, it is just fucking retarded, Company.  And that is the end of it.  Just retarded.  Take them off of your cars because that is not what they are meant for.  They are actually wrong for a whole lot of reasons.  First, because they do not denote nationality as INTERNATIONAL LAW SAYS THEY SHOULD.  Actually, I am a little disappointed that you did not figure that part out on your own, Company.  Maybe you should cut down on the Mountain Dew.  Second, they are meant to denote to place of origin, NOT NEAT PLACES YOU HAVE VISITED.  All you people have it fucking backwards.  You put one with "JH" on it because you spent a week in Jackson's Hole one time, when really your should have one that says "TP" because you are an idiot who lives in Tinley Park, Illinois, and because you deserve to be wrapped in toilet paper and lit on fire.  Third, they are just stupid and look idiotic.  So stop buying them.  And if you own a shop in a touristy place stop selling them.  It is wrong and lame for so many reasons.  And it makes me really confused as to what country you are from.

Saturday, September 01, 2012

Ten Songs I Wish William Schattner Would Do A Spoken Word Version Of

Ten songs that I wish William Schattner would do a spoken word version of:

1.) Baby Got Back - You know that you want to hear this too.  Just think about it for like twelve seconds and you will be grinning ear to ear.

2.) Oh Canada - The Canadian National Anthem.  I know that this is a bit of a surprise but it just makes me smile to think of the potential.

3.) Gangsta's Paradise - WS can be pretty badass, and I think that even with him doing a spoken word version of this song, I could imagine him being pretty hard.  Pretty fucking hard.

4.)  Picture - You know, that annoying Kid Rock/Sheryl Crow song.  I think Schattner is good enough to do both parts, and to pull them off spectacularly.

5.)  The Theme from Three's Company - Oh yeah.  And then he would bed both of those girls.  Actually, all of those girls because he would get with each of the blondes that were in that show over the years.

6.)  Always Look On the Bright Side of Life - Come to think of it, the WS version wouldn't be that much different from Monty Python's.

7.)  Any Eminem Song - Because that would piss Eminem off so much.

8.)  Tequilla - HILARIOUS!  And we would have to make a video too.

9.)  Amazing Grace - Wish bagpipe accompanyment.

10.)  Hollaback Girl - Because Schattner ain't no hollaback girl.  He ain't no hollaback girl.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Big Government Serving You

     There is a great debate in our society right now regarding our government, and it centers around the size.  There are lots of people who believe that government should be big and provide lots of services, and there are lots of people who believe that it should be as small as possible.  Now as you know, Company, we generally do not do politics here but we are going to just dabble a little bit here, just dip a toe into the political arena.  I am not going to come down on one side or another, but if you are on the big government side I have some supporting ammunition for the fact that you should immediately hire a bunch of people and begin a bunch of new programs, ones that I will gladly pay more income tax in order to support.
     See, something atrocious was allowed to happen just today.  Something that the NSA should have seen coming and that someone in some sort of special ops department should have stopped somewhere during the last months.  That event is - of course - Snooki giving birth.  You all know Snooki, Company.  She is that useless waste of space that is popular simply because she wears tight clothes and puts out in hot tubs (Exhibit 1 as to how real life and high school are essentially the same) and lives in New Jersey and once when to Italy, which she wouldn't have been able to find if someone else wasn't flying the plane.  But I digress.  The point is that she had this child - names Lorenzo - and she really should not have.  Someone from the government should have stepped in and put a stop to that.  And they had plenty of chances.
      It should have been done at conception, actually.  It would have saved a lot of people a lot of trouble.  Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones should have rolled into the bedroom or taxi or nightclub ladies room where she got knocked up, and when the guy was about to blow it they should have hit with a stick and said "NO!"  Like he was a dog getting ready to shit on the linoleum.  Or they could have pistol whipped him repeatedly until he passed out and wasn't able to finish the deed. Or, they could have been super proactive and just fed him drinks on their tab all night long so he had whiskey dick and then all would have been said and done.
A pox upon our land.
     But they failed.  No one put a stop to this.  I am sure that there were eighty paparazzi there, plus the film crew making the inevitable sex tape, so it is really inexcusable that our government wasn't there watching out for the good of all the land.  Yet they still had their chances.  Why weren't there all sorts of Navy recruits or Peach Corps workers all over the place just waiting to push her down the stairs or maybe kick her in the stomach.  Something, anything, to keep her from bringing that baby to the world.  Not that I am taking an abortion stance one way or the other, but somewhere along the way the government should have put a stop to this business.  Because, let's be honest, Snooki should not have children.
     Nope.  She shouldn't.  And the government failed to recognize that.  They should have had the National Guard there in the delivery room, shoving with all their manpower and Humvees and maybe a helicopter or two to get that thing to go back in.  Generals with a million medals smoking stogies in a war room with up-to-the-second updated about what was happening.  The President on the red phone looking concerned.  An intricate system of ropes and pulleys to keep dialation from happening.  Maybe designer drugs to make everything come to a grinding halt.  Anything to keep Snooki from becoming a parent.  Because that is not going to end well.
     I know that there are lots of people who have acted a lot like Snooki and have become very good and responsible parents.  I get that.  I understand.  But there is a lot of pressure when someone has to transition from party girl to mother of one.  A mother something.  Just kidding.  But that is a hard thing.  And it is an especially hard thing to do when you have to do it on television and you have a nasty reputation for being a party girl.  Fame is a wicked thing, Company, and it can be addictive.  The smart buy is to spend your fifteen minutes of fame figuring out how to get your next fifteen minutes.  So this poor kid is going to have to be raised in front of MTV cameras and - you can ask anyone - that never ends well.  Especially when your mom is known by a name that sounds like a product that you curl up in on cold nights when you just want to read mystery novels and drink hot cocoa.  With lots of booze in it.
     Anyway, the point here - for those of you who are politically inclined - is that a little more government could have prevented what we are going to be forced to watch for the next fifteen years until he lands on "Celebrity Rehab."  I am pretty sure that not having to have someone go through this hot mess is worth the extra taxes.  Totally worth it.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Faux Badass

     Have you ever done something that was totally okay but felt totally naughty?  Yeah, I have too.  I did it just the other day.  It's badass.  Well, not really.  It is not badass at all because the thing that you are doing is totally okay, but it FEELS badass.  It TOTALLY feels badass.
     The not-really-badass thing that I did just the other day was to go out to lunch on a weekday.  I had the Unpaid Interns do hours of tedious and exhaustive research while I was out wakeboarding, and they told me when I woke up the next morning that there is nowhere in the world where going out to lunch on a weekday is an illegal activity - with the exception maybe of North Korea and Evansville, Indiana.  They also told me that lots of people go out to eat for lunch all the time, and in fact in some cultures it is actually considered polite to go out to lunch when being involved in a business deal.  Fascinating.  I did not know that.
     Actually, I did know that.  I love to go out for lunch during the week because it feels totally naughty and totally badass.  Let me explain - for many years I was in school, and when you are in school you don't get to go out for lunch at a restaurant very often.  Then I was in college and I was too poor to go out unless it was to the commissary.  Then - immediately after college - I became a media mogul.  And as a media mogul from like  8 AM - 6 PM every day I am making deals to buy and sell companies, or producing awesome entertainment acts, or monitoring happenings at my metal foundary, or otherwise taking care of business.  None of that is true, but you get the point.  Usually, on Monday or Wednesday or even a Tuesday I am busy, and while I get a lunch I certainly don't get enough time to go out and sit down at a restaurant and eat it.  So when I walk in to a friendly local eatery on a Thursday and have lunch, it's kind of a big deal for me.
     I know that it is not a big deal, but it is a big deal FOR ME.  It is not something that life usually allows me to do so it feels like I am being a really big badass when I am doing it.  Let me give you a for instance to allow you to understand.  Let's pretend that you are a pimple-faced teenager who has no friends and pretty strict parents, and that your curfew is 10:00 PM.  But on Friday night, the Burger Barn in which you work is having a super late nite special because the fireworks are going on.  So you get to be out until midnight because that is how late you have to work.  When you come home late at night and you walk in and microwave yourself a Hot Pocket in the early hours of the AM, you feel like a total badass.  You are not a badass because you came home from work after midnight any more than I am a badass for eating lunch at a restaurant in the middle of the day in the middle of the week, but you FEEL like it because you are not usually able to do that.
     So that is that.  It is faux-basassness, if that is word.  If it isn't then it is now.  And it is really a thing.  You will know it when it happens to you.  Then you will understand.  Then you will be a badass.  Well, not really, but you will know what I mean.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

An Open Letter to the Guy Driving the Mini Van with the Boat Behind It

Dear Guy Driving the Mini Van with the Boat Behind It,

     What the hell is your god-damn problem?  Do you have some sort of concussion?  Were you born and raised in some sort of place where there are no rules?  Did you have all of your common sense removed by a tremendous amount of lead paint chips when you were a younger man?  Because I saw you do something today that is quite possibly the stupidest thing that I have ever seen before in my life, and I once saw a guy put Icy Hot on his taint and go in the shower just to see what it felt like.
     Just in case you aren't aware of just which mini van driving knitwit that you are, let me set out the scene.  It was a Dodge Grand Caravan.  It was sort of somewhere between beige and gold.  And you were towing a twenty-year-old ski boat.  You were at the friendly local grocery store, and you were in buying something.  That is fine.  But it is the way that you parked that has made me SO...VERY...ANGRY with you.
     It was not busy at said friendly local grocery store.  There were lots - and by lots I mean at least two dozen - available parking spaces in the lot.  There were plenty of spaces end to end that were available, so that you could pull in, pull through, and have your stupid van in one space and your lame fucking boat in the space behind it.  But no, those - at approximately seventy-five feet away from the front door - were apparently too far away.  Or else you were just too much of a low-grade moron to be able to figure out the mechanics of the situation, because you chose to pull right into a single depth space facing a curb with your boat hanging out AND BLOCKING THE MAIN LANE OF TRAFFIC IN THE PARKING LOT.  If you don't understand, please refer to this crude diagram that I created using Paint (Exhibit A).
Exhibit A
    Go fuck yourself and sit on a flaming stake.  A rusty flaming stake.  I know that you be hard to find but I have some top scientists at some pretty top-flight universities working on it.  Oh, and CERN is on the case too.  Because that is what I think you deserve.  I cannot even begin to imagine what would compel you to do such a thing.  Oh wait, I know, you are a fucking stuck up, self-absorbed slab of cells that mother nature could have used for something productive.  What in the world would make you think that was okay?  Please tell me.  Because I can't think of it.  I know that you were on vacation because you had giant license plate holder advertisements for out-of-town dealers and big decals for a high school that is nowhere near here.  The point is that you would never think that was acceptable when you were at home, so what would make you think it was okay here?  If I did that in your town you would be cursing me a blue streak on your way to Starbucks or driving class - which is where you really should be going.
Exhibit B
Exhibit C
     You are lucky...because I was about this close (Exhibit B) to calling the police on you.  THIS CLOSE (Exhibit C).  But I didn't do it, and I don't know why.  To this minute I am kicking myself for not bothering the police - who I assure you had nothing better to do - to have them come and harass you for a while.  Actually, what I should have done was hijacked a semi truck at fork-point and run it through your boat at a tremendous rate of speed, splattering bits of your Ski Nautique over a five-block radius.  And with luck it would have at least bent the frame of your asshole-mobile too.  And I am sure that your insurance company would have rejected your claim...oh I don't know...because you parked like a dumbass.  And then they would have jacked up your premiums just because you are wasting all sorts of oxygen, paper, water, and other resources just by being alive.
     In closing, I don't hope that you die, but I hope something awful happens to you.  I hope that you take the winning ticket for the $214 million lottery prize in to the claims office one day after the claim deadline because you accidentally locked it in your fucking stupid boat, and then that your house is completely burglarized while you are trying to claim your prize, and that you forgot to send a check for your homeowners insurance for three months because you obviously can't cut a check if you park your van like that.  So enjoy that, and if I ever see you pull that stunt again, I am going to call the police.  And I am going to key your van.  And I am going to steal the plug from your boat.

I Hope Your Nuts Get Caught in a Bear Trap,

- Big Dave

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Let's Look Back at Y2K

     Holy shit, do you guys remember Y2K?
     I do.  And I am having a lot of trouble believing - as I sit here and think about it now - that all that jazz went down 12 years ago.  Almost 13 years ago.  For those of you who are a little young, or maybe those of you who smoked a lot of reefer and lost a decade or something, Y2K was a little bit of a conundrum and a little bit of a hysteria that swept much of the world in the late 90s, culminating in 1999. 
     One hundred years is a long time, and there was a lot of technology that developed in the 100 years between 1900 and 2000.  While the impending end of the century held many of the normal style problems - forms printed with 19- for the first two years of the date, etc. - there was a unique problem.  Computers had been developed during the century and when programming begin in earnest in the 1970s no one was really looking ahead towards the end of the century.  The guys who were making computer magic in their garages and basements had been born in the 1900s, grown up in the 1900s, and their thinking was firmly rooted in the 1900s.  So when they went out and programmed, and to save space and because of how they thought, they wrote all the computer programs to use two numbers for dates.  So instead of 1979 they would just say 79.  It saved space, and that was just how things were done.
     The problem with that was that no one knew what would happen at midnight on January 1, 2000 when all the dates in the computers flipped over to say 1/1/00.  Would they think it was 1900?  Would they think it was 2000?  No one had any idea.  To their credit, the computer scientists of the world were on this problem pretty early, and they made using four-digit dates standard practice well before it became a problem.  They were pretty on the ball about updating code for the change well ahead of time too.  The problem is that somewhere along the way the press put out a story about the situation and people ran with it.  And as we know, people are stupid.  In face, there are more posts tagged with "stupid people" on this blog than any other tag.
     Nobody knew.  At least not in the general public.  And since there was already a lot of lore and superstition surrounding the end of the century and millennium, etc., and because fear and ignorance usually leads to ridiculousness, the world went nuts.  People had the world ending because of Y2K.  Bunker sales went through the roof.  Computers were going to think that it was 1900 and immediately launch every nuclear missile in the entire world.  I am not kidding...people really thought that.  Because the default action for most missile programs would be to fire them.  Yes, that makes sense.  Planes were going to fall from the sky.  Because the laws of aerodynamics care what year it is, and wings won't work in the year 2000.  Everyone was going to lose their savings, because the computers at the bank would just wipe out everyone's saving when the clock ticked over.  Then there would be a run on the places that actually had cash money or precious metals and there would be riots, and so on.  The power grid was going to fail, because the computers that controlled the power grid would think it was 1900 and the power grid as we know it wasn't around in 1900.  Sure, because the people who wrote the power station software took the time to include the fact that there wasn't widespread electrification in 1900.  The computer doesn't care; it doesn't know everything.  It is an awesome portal to all knowledge and a fantastic tool, but it doesn't know everything.   Idiots. 
     So people did what they do when they are scared - they took to the earth.  They dug in - literally.  Like I said bunkers were being built all over the place, old bunkers were be reopened, there were runs on ammunition, bottled water, meals read to eat (MRE's) and there were people who - in lieu of enjoying en event that would never happen to them again, or their children, or children's children - went down into basements or bunkers and huddled while everyone else partied.
      Nothing happened.  A lot of people had hangovers the next day.  There was confetti everywhere.  I am sure there were some software glitches here and there, but most things went on as normal.  No missiles launched unless instructed to.  Delta flight 125 left on time to Newark and made it there safely.  You could still get money out of an ATM on January 1, and you were just as rich or poor as you were the day before.  So it was much ado about nothing.  But it was really real at the time.  I know that looking backward one always has 20/20 vision, but at the time it was so real.  And such a non-event.  I wonder what it will be like 988 years from now when the millennium turns again...

Monday, August 13, 2012

The Cycles of the Moon

and so it begins
the night is dark like inkpots
the moon must return

 commence the cycle
a waxing luna appears
a move towards brightness

first quarter arrives
a beacon to light the way
zenith approached

hang above treetops
light bears the wolf to howl
full light in the night

moon begins to fade
onward completing cycle
soon it will be gone

classic lunar shape
waning away to nothing
while floating above

and so it completes
the night is dark like inkpots
the cycle restarts

Sunday, August 12, 2012

It's Complimentary

     There is always a lot of talk in the world about how to make the world a better place.  And that's an important thing.  So a lot of people think about it and they have these big dreams about finding a cure for cancer or bringing about world peace.  But that shit is hard.  I have a really easy plan for making the world a better place, and it is totally something that you can do.
     While it is terribly hard to change the world on that grand stage, it is stunningly easy to change it on a small level, grass-roots style.  All you have to do is just lay out one random compliment to one random person each day, and you will be making the world a better place.  Honest to God truth.  Because in a very small way, you will most likely have made that person's world a better place.  It is amazing the result that it can have.
      Oh sure, you are going to get the odd person who thinks you are a lunatic and maybe pops a cap in your ass.  But for the most part people are going to be into it.  Tell a random girl that strikes you as being pretty that she is pretty.  Tell the bag boy/girl at the grocery store that he/she did a good job bagging your groceries.  Or tell the bus driver that you admire their patience in dealing with rush hour traffic.
    You are going to make their world a better place.  There have been countless instances of a single random compliment making someone's day, week, or even life better.  But I am sure you would be hard pressed to find someone who was driven to the top of a water tower with a rifle complete with high-powered scope because you told them they had a nice tie.  Unless they had been brainwashed and the tie compliment was the trigger to make them carry out their brainwashed assignment.  But that would be the exception to the rule. 
      So just try it.  It actually will make you feel good too, because there is something neat about seeing people's reaction when they get the random, unexpected compliment.  So it lifts two people up for a little while.  It makes two worlds a slightly better place.  And eventually the result will be cumulative.  Well, maybe not, but sometimes you have to realize that biting off a bite that you can chew is okay.  It's not curing cancer or stopping deforestation in the Sahel, but it is something.  And that is better that nothing.

Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Randm Thoughts

     So, I know it has been an awfully long time, but I have been a busy media mogul, so cut me some fucking slack.  The good news is that while I was busy taking care of the tremendous amount of business that I take are of, I had some time to have some random thoughts land and actually stick in my brain.

1.)  Just because you own a truck and you can swing a hammer does not mean that you are a contractor.  That is the truth, as much as it hurts.  You aren't a property manager, you aren't a handyman, you aren't a contractor.  No more than owning a freezer and an ice cream scoop makes me Ben and/or Jerry.  You are just a guy who can't bring himself to have a boss or someone who just likes poking around other people's houses.

Speaking of your car...

2.)  It is still true that no one cares about what lake you live on.  Or the fact that you like the town where your vacation home is located.  So get it the hell off your license plate.  Especially since all the good combinations have been taken already.  So now I am stuck trying to figure out which crappy lake is represented on your license plate, and if I can't figure it out with my encyclopedic knowledge of the local geography of every place, then no one else is going to be able to figure it out either.  And all of us will probably crash into you trying to figure it out.  Also, I am going to start keying your car every time I walk past it.  Once you are done paying the increased insurance premiums from all the accidents and keying, you might as well just give them the shirt off of your back.

Speaking of your clothing...

3.) Having the name of your lake on your clothing is just a bad.  Scratch that, it is even worse.  Worse because it is a new and nefarious horseshit way of making me angry.  Oh, and wearing the T-shirt of the place that you have a second home, or the Hard Rock CafĂ© t-shirt of the place you are visiting is the easiest way to label yourself a tourist.  And you can only get away with that in tourist places.  Take a day and count how many people wear a "Bismarck, North Dakota" t-shirt in Bismarck, North Dakota, on an average day.  Oh wait, that is because it is stupid.

On a totally different subject...

4.)  Your life is not diminished by the lack of an e-reader.  I know that they are the hot new thing, but let's be honest, the book was a pretty solid technology for the last 700 years or so.   They are compact.  They are portable.  You can get them for nearly free from these wonderful places called libraries.  Libraries are a lot like the iTunes Store but they have air conditioning and cost less.  And the great things about books is that they are not designed to fail after three years so you have to buy another.  And you can never forget to charge them...

While we are talking about your consumer electronics...

5.)  Do not take that tablet camping.  Just don't do it.  I saw a commercial where a guy takes his kid camping and they basically use the tablet the whole entire time for everything.  That tells me that the guy doesn't know anything about the outdoors, because he is looking up pictures of frogs and reading "Goodnight, Moon" or whatever.  There is that book thing again.  And then you find out that they are camping in the backyard.  That is the super douchy thing that only people in suburban San Francisco do, which according to every commercial is the only place where anyone owns a tablet or a cell phone.  I was wondering how he got it recharged every day and always had a signal.

Oh, and one last thought while we are talking about camping...

6.)  It is official.  I am off of the high horse.  I am rubber stamping - notarized - that camping in an RV is still camping.  Even if you have one of those gigantic eleventy-billion dollar things that has marble countertops and an helipad and several small RVs behind it with all the servants, it is still camping as of RIGHT NOW!  That is right, if your particular state requires it to have a license plate on it AND there are leveling jacks...then you are camping my friend.  Oh, or if you are in a tent.  Or if you are just lying outside on the ground.  Unless you have a bindle.  Then you are probably a hobo.  And if you are sleeping outside with no cover in a hammock, then you are just a lazy bitch.

Monday, May 28, 2012

The Navy in the Schools

For those of you who don't know, May is Military Appreciation Month. As such, we here at Big Dave and Company have decided that we are going to write a post for each of the service branches showing how they do so much more than fight for our country. Since they are all equally important, we are just going to go alphabetically. Today we look at the Navy.

    The Navy Community Service Program has five flagship areas that they focus their community service and volunteer efforts towards.  One of those is called Campaign Drug Free.  Recently, members of the Navy Readiness Command (REDCOM) Northwest spent some time at Marysville Middle School in Washington State as part of the program.  The Sailors spoke with 541 seventh graders throughout the day about things like drug awareness, making smart decisions, and the importance of having positive goals.  While this happens all around the country all the time, let's take a little more in-depth look at the experience at Marysville.
     Yeoman 2nd Class Juan Piper, who is the Campaign Drug Free co-ordinater for REDCOM Northwest, stressed the importance of sailors using their influence and status for the cause of the program.  "Kids are the future of this country.  They need to be empowered and educated.  They need tools to use in case they are approached by someone who offers them drugs."  Marysville Middle School intervention specialist Rhonda Moen agreed about the effect that sailors can have on young minds.  "Just having the Sailors come to the school in uniform is an act of intervention.  The kids respect people in uniforms and will listen to what they have to say."  This is part of the critical importance Campaign Drug Free.
     While all the Sailors at Marysville gave the same general message, there were certain Sailors who addressed more specific issues within the community.  Since methamphetamine use is heavy in the Marysville area, Yeoman 1st Class Celia Mendez spoke about their use and its consequences. "I learned about [methamphetamines] so I could help the children in the community.  They are facing things I never had to face at their age."  Piper went on to note that "even though we can't fix everything in one day, we can show them that there are outlets to help."
      And the program seems to be working, if measured by the reactions of the teachers and staff at Marysville.  "the teams were informed, interesting, and used good teaching styles that engaged the students," observed Bill Write, a health and drama teacher at the school.  Moen added that "I've heard nothing but good things from the students and teachers.  I certainly hope the Sailors will come again."  While it is almost impossibly to quantify the effect that Campaign Drug Free is having on the students it has visited, the presence of men and women in uniform giving the anti-drug message certainly cannot hurt.
    Campaign Drug Free is just one arm of a comprehensive Navy program to get Sailors out making our communities better places.  In addition to the war on drugs, Naval personnel are out tutoring, mentoring and promoting citizenship among youth as part of the Personal Excellence Partnership Program, serving needy families as part of Project Good Neighbor, promoting the health of today's youth in the Health, Safety, and Fitness Flagship, and doing their best to improve the environment as part of their Environmental Stewardship program.  All fine examples of our servicemen and women doing their part to make our world a better place.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

The Marines in the Yard

For those of you who don't know, May is Military Appreciation Month. As such, we here at Big Dave and Company have decided that we are going to write a post for each of the service branches showing how they do so much more than fight for our country. Since they are all equally important, we are just going to go alphabetically. Today we look at the Coast Guard.

     Bukit Harapan Theraputic Community is a Malaysan group that cares for and participates in the rehabilitation of disabled children, as well as a shelter home for aboused, single, or disabled women. It also provides a home for orphaned children. On their website, they state:

     It has always been the goal of Bukit Harapan to aid the helpless from the young to the old so that they may find confidence in life again, so that they may see the reason to stay alive, so that they may stand on their feet again and so that they may forgive those who have hurt them and to look forward to the future.

     But even an organization that dedicated itself to helping other can use some help itself from time to time. And so Marines from the 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit - which are stationed on the USS Makin Island - visited Bukit Harapan recently to visit the children and help with some of the yard work and chores around the compound.
     While the main chore that the Marines helped with was cleaning mud out of a drainage trench on the property, but it is the visiting with the children that really highlights the day. "Even though there is a language barrier, the kids always enjoy themselves when [U.S. military members] visit..." noted Audra Keyworth, the Bukit Harapan adminsitrator.
     While half of the volunteers were out working in the trench, the other half were playing with the children. Marines played games like Duck, Duck, Goose, colored, and took pictures with the kids. To cap off the day, the Makin Island's First Class Petty Officer's Association - an association of the Naval Officers on the ship - donated $500 to Bukit Harapan.
     While many Marines are stationed aboard Navy ships, they remain just as dedicated as their fellow branches to public service, both at home and abroad. Their work at Bukit Harapan is just another prime example of how our servicemen and women strive to make the world a better place beyond just protecting it from tyranny and danger.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

The Coast Guard in the Bay

For those of you who don't know, May is Military Appreciation Month. As such, we here at Big Dave and Company have decided that we are going to write a post for each of the service branches showing how they do so much more than fight for our country. Since they are all equally important, we are just going to go alphabetically. Today we look at the Coast Guard.

     Barnegat Bay sits along the coast of central New Jersey, separated from the roiling Atlantic Ocean by a long string of barrier islands and peninsulas.  Explorer Henry Hudson described the bay as early as 1609, noting it as "...a great lake of water, as we could judge it to be...The mouth of the lake hath many shoals, and the sea breaketh on them as it is cast out the mouth of it."  In fact, the name of the bay is a rough translation of the Dutch term for "Inlet of Breakers."   The Bay has long been a popular area for commercial fishing, and in recent years recreational boating has become more and more popular in the bay.  This has come with a population explosion in Ocean County, New Jersey, which borders its shores.  With this growth - however - has come an increase in pollutants and refuse in the rivers that feed the bay, which has adversely affected water quality.
    Recently, however, there has been an effort to help clean up the bay, and Crewmembers from the US Coast Guard Station Barnegat Light have been an instrumental part.  The Barnegat Bay Blitz, which is sponsored by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, gets together all sorts of people from the government, schools, businesses, and community groups to help cleanup the entire watershed of the bay.  And the Coast Guard played a leading role.
     Crewmembers spent part of a raw and windy and rainy day last week to clean trash and other litter from areas near Barnegat Lighthouse State Park on Long Beach Island.  "It is important for us, the local Coast Guard station, to partner with local agencies and individual volunteers to help preserve out maritime environment." stated the Station Barnegat Light's commanding officer, Chief Warrant Officer Jay Grenier. "By taking one day of work and dedicating it to cleaning up the environment, we help make it a better place."  It is always considered good form to keep your workplace clean and tidy.
      This is just a small example of the work that Coast Guard Crewmembers do every day across the country and around the world to make the places in which they are stationed better places to live, work, and visit.