Coffee and cigarettes…

January 5, 2009

it’s a new year alright…

Filed under: brain candy — techrat @ 10:26 am

…but it sure looks a lot like the old one.

Da boss is out sick, still. I’m on my own here at the Fun Factory.

Which means that the fun, relaxed, happy vibe I brought in with me from ZOMG Best Weekend Evar lasted about 45 seconds. (That’s not entirely true… I do still feel really damn good. It’s just on the back burner while I fight all the fires that I found waiting for me when I came in. Maintain….just maintain.)

In no particular order, the highlight reel begins….now.


December 31, 2008

they grow up fast…

Filed under: brain candy — techrat @ 10:00 am

Last night was business as usual with Miss Kidd – our usual dinner-and-wandering-and-talking routine. But she’s starting to add twists of her own.

So we’re at Steak ‘n Shake, cuz chili goes well with sinus infections for reasons I can’t fully elaborate on, and as we’re wrapping up the meal, Miss Kidd reaches across the table and grabs the check from me.

“I got this.”

Just a very matter-of-fact statement.

Rather than argue with her, I just said I’d cover the tip, which she accepted as fair.

I hung back a bit and watched her as she walked up to the counter, paid the tab (while giving me a sidewise glance and a smile) and bantered with the cashier a bit. I have a hard time looking at her and not seeing the hyperkinetic bouncy-ball she was not so long ago. The fiercely determined little imp who made three words — “No, *I* do!” — sound like a death threat covered in inches-thick layers of cute.

But she’s not those things anymore. At 12, she’s already taller than my mother, my girlfriend and my BFF. (I really do need to stop watering her.) While she isn’t drop-dead model gorgeous, she is definitely a very pretty young lady, and will be even moreso after puberty finishes rebuilding her for adulthood. The intellect is still there, the fierce determination even moreso… time is doing nothing but adding more weapons to her feminine arsenal.

She’s not a little girl anymore… and I have to say I’m pretty fond of the woman she’s growing into.

And maybe just a bit fond of myself for having had a hand in making her into who she is, and who she’ll be.

December 29, 2008

yay! new addiction!

Filed under: brain candy — techrat @ 3:07 pm

Well, OK, it’s new to me. Most of you are about to go “geez, you’re kidding, right? that’s so 5 years ago”.

I have been Borged into the Guitar Hero cult.

So far… well, “suck” is a polite term. I have yet to achieve better than 90% completion on anything, even in Easy mode. (In Medium, I’ve hit a brick wall I call “Fat Lip” by Sum41.) It’s interesting, challenging and frustrating… but also, I’m at a bit of a handicap for playing, so the frustration isn’t all of the good/motivating kind. Between arthritis and just enough nerve damage to piss me off, my pinkies won’t fire on cue – they’re a good quarter-second behind the others, and even when they do, it’s often not quite strong enough to trigger the fret button.

Any recommendations for exercises I might do to improve on this?

win some, lose some

Filed under: brain candy — techrat @ 12:28 pm

So there’s been some reconsideration here at the Fun Factory, and it seems I won’t have to go to Missouri in January as previously thought.

Instead, it’s looking like mid-to-late February.

Known affectionately in the midwest as “oh, you thought winter was over? oh, do we have a surprise for you…”

So… yay, and argh, all at once.

December 22, 2008

the weekend, in brief

Filed under: brain candy — techrat @ 9:53 am

Quick hits from around the league…

  • Dad’s home from the hospital. Notable only in that he really shouldn’t be just yet.
  • Spent most of the weekend with AB, and it was gloriously domestic. Banana-nut pancakes with chocolate chips for the absolute win.
    • Bacon and nakedness – you’d think they don’t go together, but they do. Really.
  • As usual, something comes up that throws the best-laid plans out the window and skeet-shoots them on their way to the ground. As ever, we will adapt, improvise and overcome. We just won’t like it.
  • I’m on my own here at the fun factory this week. Bossman has leftover vacation days and needs to use them up.
  • Still to do… finish acquiring and/or finding presents for the fole wham damily, wrap, prep for the Xmas-day drive-a-lot marathon, try not to kill anyone here at the fun factory, and oh, yeah, eating and sleeping at some point might be nice.


December 17, 2008

on the mend… but only just so

Filed under: brain candy — techrat @ 11:50 am

Went and saw my father last night, down at Bay Pines. As it was a Tuesday, I had Miss Kidd along with me. I have no idea how much or how detailed this will be, so I’ll stick most of it behind the cut here.


December 15, 2008

the hellidays have begun…

Filed under: brain candy — techrat @ 9:21 am

Got the annual “are you coming for Christmas?” call from my grandmother, and during our chat she shared that my dad was once again in the hospital. Ignoring the fit of pique I got from finding this out from her and not my mother (who you’d expect would call to let me know these things, right?), she drops the bomb that this time, it’s another Christmas amputation.

It wasn’t all that long ago that the doctors decided that the only way to keep my dad alive was to take one leg off just below the knee. His having diabetes, and not taking all that good care of himself, has done the same thing to the remaining leg that led to the original one being amputated.

The worst part of it all? I feel like hell because my first thought was hoping, just a little, that perhaps he’d fade away under anesthesia this time and not hurt anymore. Not “will he be ok?” or “this must be awful for him to face” but just “hasn’t he suffered enough already?”

I feel like I’m the most horrible son a father could have. And given his and my history, that’s saying something.

December 2, 2008

Why, yes, I’d like some cheese to go with this whine…

Filed under: brain candy — techrat @ 1:28 pm

I don’t wanna go to Missouri in January! That’s just… evil.

The Fun Factory is shipping me off to a place about an hour outside KCMO for training on the new system we’ll be using to control job creation and parts pattern files for the giant arm-eating machinery. It’ll be a fun-filled week, I’m quite sure.

But, at least, it did settle one thing that’s been on my mind. I dropped both registered classes for the spring term… missing a week that early in the term tends to become unrecoverable, especially in as intense a subject as Statistics (where I will likely have to actually work, as opposed to the achieve-without-effort Tao effect I’ve been working with to date).

So we now will be diverting that tuition funding toward certification testing instead. I need to add some letters after my name so I can find something that pays a lot better than the Fun Factory does. This being broke crap sucks.

December 1, 2008

my ipod hates me

Filed under: brain candy — techrat @ 5:55 pm

I almost got thrown out of my exam tonight, because of my ipod.

They’re allowed during this prof’s tests. But it made me laugh my ass off rather disruptively.

I got RickRolled by my ipod.

Bonus: tonight’s test? On the endocrine system, circulatory system, and the heart.

Which Rick is never gonna break.

November 26, 2008

found on craigslist…

Filed under: brain candy — techrat @ 3:22 pm

Originally from

OK, let me start off by saying this Xterra is only available for purchase by the manliest of men (or women). My friend, if it was possible for a vehicle to sprout chest hair and a five o’clock shadow, this Nissan would look like Tom Selleck. It is just that manly.

It was never intended to drive to the mall so you can pick up that adorable shirt at Abercrombie & Fitch that you had your eye on. It wasn’t meant to transport you to yoga class or Linens & Things. No, that’s what your Prius is for. If that’s the kind of car you’re looking for, then just do us all a favor and stop reading right now. I mean it. Just stop.

This car was engineered by 3rd degree ninja super-warriors in the highest mountains of Japan to serve the needs of the man that cheats death on a daily basis. They didn’t even consider superfluous nancy boy amenities like navigation systems (real men don’t get lost), heated leather seats (a real man doesn’t let anything warm his butt), or On Star (real men don’t even know what the hell On Star is).

No, this brute comes with the things us testosterone-fueled super action junkies need. It has a 265 HP engine to outrun the cops. It’s got special blood/gore resistant upholstery. It even has a first-aid kit in the back. You know what the first aid kit has in it? A pint of whiskey, a stitch-your-own-wound kit and a hunk of leather to bite down on when you’re operating on yourself. The Xterra also has an automatic transmission so if you’re being chased by Libyan terrorists, you’ll still be able to shoot your machine gun out the window and drive at the same time. It’s saved my bacon more than once.

It has room for you and the four hotties you picked up on the way to the gym to blast your pecs and hammer your glutes. There’s a tow hitch to pull your 50 caliber anti-Taliban, self cooling machine gun. I also just put in a new windshield to replace the one that got shot out by The Man.

My price on this bad boy is an incredibly low $12,900, but I’ll entertain reasonable offers. And by reasonable, I mean don’t walk up and tell me you’ll give me $5,000 for it. That’s liable to earn you a Burmese-roundhouse-sphincter-kick with a follow up three fingered eye-jab. Would it hurt? Hell yeah. Let’s just say you won’t be the prettiest guy at the Coldplay concert anymore.

There’s only 69,000 miles on this four-wheeled hellcat from Planet Kickass. Trust me, it will outlive you and the offspring that will carry your name. It will live on as a monument to your machismo.

Now, go look in the mirror and tell me what you see. If it’s a rugged, no holds barred, super brute he-man macho Chuck Norris stunt double, then contact me. I might be out hang-gliding or BASE jumping or just chilling with my ladies, but I’ll get back to you. And when I do, we’ll talk about a price over a nice glass of Schmidt while we listen to Johnny Cash.

To sweeten the deal a little, I’m throwing in this pair of MC Hammer pants for the man with rippling quads that can’t fit into regular pants. Yeah, you heard me. FREE MC Hammer pants.

Rock on.

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