Toons

Growing up, I watched the typical cartoons. Looney Toons, Tom and Jerry, Droopy (my personal favorite), Voltron, and I will even admit to watching the Smurfs. Obviously, these are not the only cartoons I watched, but it is a good sample size.

A discussion at work today made me realize that when I was growing up, I tended to hope that the “villain” would win in the end. I wanted Wile E. to catch that stupid roadrunner. I felt bad for Tom; I wanted him to catch that stupid mouse. I wanted Gargamel and Azrael to catch those annoying blue communists. It wasn’t universal, I did always like Droopy, and I always wanted him to win in the end, but a lot of the other cartoons, I wanted the villain to come out on top. Heck, I even wanted Mr. Fudd to shoot that darn wabbit.

Actually, even in regular movies, I tend to root for the bad guys. Darth Vader, Bruce the shark in Jaws, The Dinosaurs in Jurassic Park, and of course, I always rooted for Godzilla, if he was the good guy or the bad guy.  I hated superman, spiderman, the humans. The villains were always so much deeper as characters.

I have no idea why I wanted the bad guys, or the villains, to win in the end. I don’t know what that says about me.

Maybe I just like things that annoy me to lose.

Odd Job

The other day a friend and fellow blogger asked me to do him a minor favor. It was no problem at all except for what he asked me to do. He wrote a short story, and wanted me to review it. He wanted me to proofread it and edit it. My mom right now is laughing hard enough to hurt herself.

Let me explain why. Growing up I was the absolute worst speller. I would have my mom edit, if not rewrite my schoolwork I was so bad. And if it wasn’t for spell check, I probably would have a lot more mistakes in my blog. Blogging has taught me to take my time and reread my work, and I do catch a lot of mistakes, but to actually edit someone else’s work? This was actually a little scary for me, a lot of added pressure. Even when I take my time, I still make a lot of mistakes.

Of course, I could not pass up the opportunity to read this story that he has been writing for months now, especially since it all started with a conversation between us. I had this idea that I told him about, a story I knew I wouldn’t ever really write. And his story was a good story; I thoroughly enjoyed it, even if it wasn’t the story I thought he was going to write. Where he started is not where he ended, which frees up my idea again.

Maybe this blogging thing really is helping my writing. I take my time, write a blog, walk away, reread it, and make changes. And I really did appreciate that he asked me to read his work. I know how much a second set of eyes can help. Someone else may catch some things that you wouldn’t. I’ve seen that happen with this blog. Others pointed out mistakes I made but that I didn’t see to me. And a writer cannot take offense to someone pointing out mistakes, cause they will be made. Mistakes happen. Anytime someone points out mistakes I have made, I actually appreciate them even more. It shows that they are actually reading my work, as bad as it can be.

And my mom knows, I have a history of making mistakes.

Yard Sale (actually, nothing to do with a yard sale)

Today I got a notice from the Property Managers Board of Directors, not something that is uncommon. It was directed towards all homeowners, so of course I wasn’t going to take it personally. However, the letter itself was kind of entertaining. The words in bold are my comments.

Subject: Community Reminders and Yard Sale Ok, I actually bought some stuff at the last yard sale, this might be good.

1. Please do NOT put your trash out on days other than the day of trash collection- which is Wednesday- as this invited rodents and creates an unsightly community. Also- Please put away your trash cans ASAP. After the trash is collected. Trash cans are not to be in public view except on trash collection days. Trashcans should be one word, but that’s minor. These people do love their – marks. Also, one morning I had to run outside to make sure I caught the trash collectors on a day I took off. That was at 7 am, I have NO issues with people putting out the trash the night before. And the cans are not to be in public view? So, people without garages have to keep them in their house? That’s messed up.

2. Please be sure that all trash bags are securely closed and other materials are secured so that the debris does not blow all over the streets. This includes recycling. Most of the debris probably comes from the trash collectors dumping the trash into their trucks. Every time they come through I see garbage all over the road. I highly doubt that it is from the community. And I had to walk two blocks once just to find my garbage can; at least I think it was mine. And how are you going to prove whose trash was blown all over the place? As for securing the trash, I am not going to use my lid. I am pretty sure that the collectors used it as a Frisbee last time.

3. Please be aware of your vehicle speed at all times. Look for pedestrians, children on bikes but not children playing in the street? and pets at all times. Leashes? We have many children in our community and vehicles are going much too fast. We love our kids do not and do not wish to see anyone injured. Wow. Can’t really argue with a lot on this one. I was actually passed here. Speed limit is 30, I was doing 35, and I was passed. And most kids in the area are not too bad, but some walk in the middle of the road. Screw them, to stupid to live.

4. If you are considering adding exterior alterations to your home such as a deck, fence, patio, storm door, etc. – you must submit a Request For Exterior Alteration to be sent to Tidewater Property Management. All requests MUST be approved by the Architectural Review Committee BEFORE construction can be started. Storm doors? Really? Again, I can agree with most of this, but STORM DOORS? I probably need permission to paint my doors as well.

 

This wasn’t the entire letter, but I did notice that the letter did not have any mention of the yard sale. That was a pamphlet included in the envelope. So, the subject line should have just been “reminders.”

Total Recall

I had a blog in my head for this morning. I knew what I wanted to say, were I was going to go with it, and yes, it was Godzilla related. However, before I started writing it, I logged onto CNN and read an article about GM and the recall that won’t go away caught my eye. After reading it, I decided that I give my readers a break and not talk about the big G, and instead talk about the big GM.

As we all know, or hopefully know, General Motors is having issues with a recall notice. The real issue isn’t that their cars had problems and caused some deaths. No, the real problem is that they knew of the problems years ago, delayed the recall, and got caught having done so. The issue always starts with getting caught. President Nixon had no problems till he got caught in the lies.

The article I read today covered a briefing that GM gave to their employees about words not to use on internal emails and memos. Now, some of these words I can understand being frowned upon by management. Using words like “deathtrap,” “widow maker,” and “Hindenburg” may not be appropriate in emails and memos. Even when used in internal emails, you never know what might leak to the public. However, some of the other words those employees were asked to refrain from using show that they were not concerned about how business like they appear. They also told their employees not to use words like “serious,” “safety related,” and “defect.” They were asked to use statement like “does not preform as designed” for example.

So, rather then address the problems, and make it so that there were no issues to be addressed, GM wanted employees to use less “inflammatory” words. This reminds me a lot of my management. Instead of fixing the issues, they try to fix the symptoms of the problem. Let’s not address that parts have a defect lets just say that they are not working as intended. Nothing like remaining focused on the real problems. And now, GM is being bitten in the ass thanks to their management policies.

I remember a friend commenting that Toyota wouldn’t survive their recall on the unintended acceleration, well, Toyota did, and I expect GM will as well. Possibly without a government buyout.

CNN Article

Three Thing Friday

1. Godzilla – I went into the new Godzilla with very low expectations. As long as it was better than the one from 1998 with Matthew Broderick I would be a very happy fan. Having said that, all the advertisements I have seen for the new movie kept getting my hopes up that America can finally make a good Godzilla movie. The film did have its faults, but it did not disappoint. I will say that the U.S. did seem to fatten up the monster, maybe he decided to eat at McDonalds a few times too often. There were other issues as well, but overall, I am extremely happy with the film.

I guess I will know how good I think it is when I see it again next week.

2. Green means go! – Coming to stop at a green light to make up your mind if you want to go left or straight is a bad plan, unless you are trying to get yourself killed. If you do not know where you are going, pull over. If you are unsure if you want to make the left or go straight, pull over. This is Maryland, even if you make a mistake, it is relatively easy to correct it and turn around. Waiting for someone to hit you, that is just stupid.

3. Paddington Bear – Leaving the theater today, I saw a movie poster for Paddington Bear. I am both excited and terrified that this is becoming a film, and from the looks of it, a live action film. Ironically, it was Godzilla that gave me hope. I have seen Hollywood ruin so many of my childhood memories by trying to make them into movies. Again, the 1998 Godzilla film is a perfect example. But with this current movie, it gives me hope that Hollywood won’t screw this up.

I remember the curious bear in a petticoat. I remember the red or black hat (depending on the bear). I loved that cartoon bear and I can remember watching it on PBS. I will see the movie when it is on TV, and hopefully it will be decent. Again, setting expectations low.

Nice Rack

I decided to take today off, not to see the Godzilla movie (that’s tomorrow), but in order to get some minor things done around the house. Yes, I did take some time to work on my warhammer models. Not much time, but a little bit. No, my main objectives for the day all had to do with the car.

First, the car was in desperate need of a bath. I don’t think I really washed the car since before the start of winter. I may be forgetting one wash on some random warm day, but overall the car has not been washed in months. I know I did not take it to a car wash during the winter, and I know I am not crazy enough to wash the car myself in the middle of the cold snowy winter. So I can safely conclude that the car has not been cleaned in months. As of today though, this is no longer true, as I took the time to give it a good scrub down. And even with the rainstorms giving it a rinse, it was filthy.

But the real reason for washing the car was so that I can put my roof racks back onto the car. With the weather getting warmer I plan on kayaking sometime soon. So, I made sure to wash the roof and then took an hour to put the racks on. They do seem a little loose, but I hope that once I put some weight on the racks I will be able to tighten them up fully.

Last summer I did not go out in the kayak that often. It was one of my let downs of the last kayaking season. I hope to go more often this year. Going once a week would be nice, but I don’t expect to actually be able to do that.

I really do need to go out though, I really need the exercise. Especially after the calzone I had for lunch today.

Just Another Day

A lot happened at work today, most of it pretty stupid. I’ll start with the fact that I had to fill out an application for a course that I don’t really want to take. It is the “Emerging Leadership Development” course that I have no interest in. One of the questions I had to answer was “why do you want to take this course?” Now, I could have been honest and said that I didn’t want to take the course, but I was being told to. I could have answered it that way, but instead of answering with the truth, I filled it out with the standard self-improvement, future management position, and the rest of the B.S. that I could add.

Another thing worth mentioning was the assignment of tasks. Management asked for volunteers for the “Army Emergency Program” and the summer picnic. And since I would rather light myself on fire than go to the picnic, and I already have organizations I donate to that are not on the AEP list, I did not volunteer for either. And apparently no one else did either. So tasks were assigned, and two members of my team got stuck with the tasks, no one else from the organization has to manage one of these tasks. It really is a good thing that I wasn’t picked, since I would add no help what so ever. In fact, I may have actively hindered both the picnic and fund raising.

Not counting the normal workday stuff; processing MIPRs, answering customers questions, and whatever else I do throughout the day, these two things were the only new things to happen.

And they were just stupid.

Feeling off

This morning, I woke up as usual. Well, not quite as usual, since it took an alarm clock to wake me up, but I did get up and start my day. I went through the usual motions of feeding the cats, showering, getting dressed. But through it all, something felt off.

Even when I got to work, something just didn’t feel right. But I stayed, created the report that was my turn to create and just continued going through the motions. By noon, I knew something really wasn’t right. I was exhausted and I did not want to be at work. Ok, I never really want to be at work, but this was different.

I decided that since I have sick leave, I should use it and go home. I got home and took a nap that lasted an hour and a half. When I woke up, I felt worse. I now have a sore throat, I cannot breathe, and I just want to go back to sleep again.

It’s funny how I knew something was wrong even though I had no symptoms. I really should have stayed home and let myself ride it out, but I am glad that I went home early. Now, hopefully I’ll be back up and running by tomorrow, but if I am not, I’m not going to worry. I have the leave; no one will die if I don’t show up, and as my management has taught me over the years…

Screw the customers.

The Kiss Saw Around the World

Apparently, it is breaking news that a gay man was drafted into the NFL and that when he got the news, he kissed his boyfriend. This is the news that was reported instead of what is going on over in Russia and the Ukraine. This is more important news than Iran copying our stealth drone that looks a lot like a stealth bomber, only smaller. A gay man getting a job and kissing his boyfriend is the most important news of the day. I have no issues with a gay player being in the NFL, nor do I care what each player’s sexuality is. Actually, if he would help the Bengals win a game; I’d want him on my team!

But some of the other fans and players do not seem to agree with me. In fact, some players and fans were texting how shameful it was for two men to be kissing on national TV. I cannot help but wonder if they would have been complaining if it were two attractive women kissing on camera. Or maybe they would have been the type that would be hooting and hollering. It is amazing at the double standard most males have against gay men kissing on cameras but not two women.

Sure, I probably could have done without seeing footage of two men kissing (actually, I didn’t watch any of the draft, so I didn’t see it). But I could also do without seeing men and women kissing on camera when I am watching the draft. Screw the emotional crap and get back to the sports.

So, congrats to the first openly gay man to be drafted. I am sure he is not the first gay man in the NFL, but at least he is man enough to admit it.

No, can we get back to some real news?

Mother’s Day

Every once in a while, when I am playing warhammer (or just hanging out) at the game store, I see some young kids there as well. Sitting there either feigning interest or doing something else like putting together a puzzle, is their mother. Seeing that actually makes me appreciate all of the things my mother had done for me over the years. I know she took me to events that she would not have gone to on her own. She did things that she was probably not at all interested in.

My mother and I are a lot alike. We have the same sense of humor. We can both make each other laugh and we both usually find the same things funny. This is a good thing since my dad doesn’t really have a sense of humor. Well, maybe he does and I just don’t get it. Of all of the things I have got from my mother, this is the best thing that I got. Not everyone get my sense of humor, it must be a Klebold thing. When I pulled a practical joke on my father, and while it did backfire on us a few times, she and I found it funny as hell. My dad yelled at me, which made us laugh even harder.

My mom is awesome. Ask any of my friends that have hung out with her. Ask Bill and Jen, whom introduced her to port. Ask anyone who went to my graduation party. Ask the son who she bought alcohol for; maybe I shouldn’t have said that last one.

Yes, my mother and I have had our fights. Sure, my mom actually evicted me from her house. Ok, once while I was driving down the road, she decided to test my cars emergency brake (which was pretty damn funny). And yes, one time when I was in the hospital during my seventh grade year, a nurse walked in one door to take my blood and my mother walked out the other. She abandoned me with the vampire, I mean, the nurse.

But she also drove me to see my specialist in New Brunswick. She also took me to air shows. She tolerated the fact that one entire summer I said that I didn’t want a body board, till September, when there were none left (and has never let me forget it). She went to my little league games, she went to all or almost all or the marching band competitions.

Mom, Thanks.