Category Archives: I Crack Me Up

I should be a politician

Not really. I’d get in trouble. For speaking the truth to power, I suppose. With a smirk.

A young guy comes to my door and has a quick three question survey. There were five choices in the first question “what do you rank as most important to you”, and the “options” left me thinking I was simply to choose what *kind* of democrat I was. Saving the environment, protecting a woman’s right, etc. I said none. He pressed. None, please. We went on.

Who would you choose for governor? I know what you’d *like* to hear, I thought. “Definitely [Pawlenty](http://timpawlenty.campaignoffice.com/).” “Oh.”

Then what party. Then the discussion began.

Don’t I want school funding to increase? Heavens, no! And so we started talking about school funding, per capita costs, and related issues. It turns out he’s a school teacher in Minneapolis. By the time he and I were done talking, he seemed as ready as I to gut the public school system and even start by privatization. It turned out to be a very agreeable conversation.

Time to go, but he felt compelled to give it one more run. Healthcare costs have gone up 33%. Mike Hatch sues healthcare types. So vote for Hatch. I laughed. Yeah, but he sued Big Tobacco… what good has that done? Lots of new anti-smoking ads, of course. So *someone* got the best of it. But overall, a big nothing.

I said that I’m sticking conservative because I want less money to go to broken systems (because I don’t like supporting broken) and because less money will force change. Not that conservatives these days seem particularly good at spending less money. Different topic.

“Yeah, Hatch isn’t really a strong candidate.” he said, “I’m really only out here because it’s my job.”

They’re gone.

All of them. They piled into the minivan for their various Wednesday night church activities. I offered my benedictions and walked into the house, letting out a cheer that made Helen and Kenny and Bunny the bunny all jump.

The whole house to myself.

The plan is to finish my Greek study. That’s always been the habit on Wednesday nights, though it was usually at a coffee shop after I’d dropped off the kids. But now *they* all left and *I* got to stay.

So the coffee’s brewing. How can I study Greek if I don’t have my coffee? (Didn’t the schoolmaster say that in *The Wall*?)

I’m like a former starlet…

…yearningly remembering her days of beauty and attention. My blog traffic is back to normal. Normal is nice. I’m actually always surprised at how many folks drop by and linger for a while. But the last two days put these huge spikes on my traffic chart, and it’s making my formerly quite acceptable traffic look meager in comparison. Curse you, fickle Fame! I was content! CONTENT!

Gotta get out

My lovely bride and I need to get out of the house. A movie? A dinner? A stroll in a park? A shopping trip? A trip to Tahiti? We use babysitters for obligation-type stuff so often that we rarely get one for just plain fun. What should we do?


A photo from our last date.

I think I’m so smart

[1]: http://www.helenmartin.com/?p=114
[2]: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windshield
[3]: http://www.tapecase.com/tc/3Minfo.asp?3Mtype=688&3Mdb=3MINDBUSRELPROD

My [Lovely Bride’s post about me][1] peaked a smidgen of curiosity, so I’ve decided to tell a wonderfully embarrassing story about myself.

I hate a dirty windshield. My nice little gumball of a Nissan Sentra had an ever-dirty windshield. It drove me nuts. Seriously. As you will see.

I decided it was all the drive-through, no-touch car washes I’d been putting it through. That it had built up a bunch of cheap wax where wax shouldn’t be. No matter how well I Windex-ed the windshield or how new the wiper blades were, the blades hopped along noisily when activated, and left streaks and smears in their wake. Not so bad that anyone else would care much. But it drove me nuts.

To prove my insanity, I hatched a plan. I was going to scrub the windshield free of any waxy residue. With what? Well, I heard somewhere that glass is harder than brass, so I though a [“non-stick safe” 3M scrubbie pad][3] would certainly be softer yet. And I may have been right. But my [missing fact][1] was that windshields are not just glass. They are [coated with plastic][2]. That’s what actually makes them “safety glass” and keeps the glass from flying around in an accident.

Well, armed with my disillusion, I attacked the windshield. I soaped it up and very gently swirled and swirled with my scrubbie pad. Bubbles grew. It smelled good. I grabbed the hose and rinsed… off… the…

I still think it was the waxy build up. The wipers didn’t hop or leave streaks after that. And what I did could actually have been considered artistic in some sense. Very lightly scratched into the whole windshield were swirls and swirls which interacted with nighttime lights in the most psychedelic ways. Haunting me – mocking me – every night thereafter; whispering “idiot”.

Promotion!

[1]: http://www.simplyretailinc.com/

This week I was promoted to Vice President of Production and Technology for [Simply Retail, Inc.][1], and I will be going full time starting in April. (I’ve been four days a week until now.) Very exiting stuff! :)

Co-workers emailed me congratulations, and I replied: “By the time I got home, I was so drunk with power that I fired all the kids.”

Needling the psychic

[1]: http://www.laughingstockbroker.com/

I haven’t posted for a while, so I thought I’d tell a story. I filed it under “I Crack Me Up”, so it technically needs only amuse me. And perhaps that will be the case.

Recently, Helen and I attended a small trade group convention. Helen was hired to sing a few sets of “american classics”; Sinatra-type stuff. The technology behind the event was poorly executed, and I ended up scurrying around helping to get things working. While doing that, I’d gotten to know the night’s comedian, [David Goldman, “The Laughing Stock Broker”][1], a little bit. Nice guy. Actually funny off-stage as well as on, unlike other comedians I’ve known in the past who were often quite sullen.

Later in the evening as I was wandering around, a pleasant, slightly chubby guy grabbed my hand, flipped it palm up, and started telling me all about me. He was the party’s hired psychic palm reader. I’d heard him wandering around doing that thing folks love: saying wonderful, generic things about their character and future, and asking gently prodding questions until he “reveals” something. “You are concerned about someone you know who is sick…”

Continue reading Needling the psychic

Good morning music

Helen often wakes up to the alarm playing the soundtrack CD from Sophie’s Choice. It’s nice, gentle, a little wistful.

Anyway, when she wasn’t looking, I cranked up iTunes, copied the CD, and made a new one with the first song the same as always (to give her that sense of familiarity), but the second song was [this annoying little tune][1] from an [old Sherlock Holmes movie][2]. I warn you, if you listen, it will stubbornly lodge itself in your head. Even singing it like Bob Dylan won’t get it out.

[1]: http://www.kpmartin.com/wp-content/uploads/2006/01/ayeaye.mp3
[2]: http://www.archive.org/details/secret_weapon