Thursday, March 31, 2011

Asshat - No laughing matter

I know sometimes when I take to doing an Asshat blog I will start by trying to be funny or witty or at least do a couple sentence diatribe on what is about to follow.  I can't do that this time, this isn't funny, it isn't cute and there is no suitable joke or rant I can make here.

Reno mother pleads guilty to fatally shaking, beating and burning infant son

A 30-year-old housekeeper admitted Thursday that she fatally abused her infant son through shaking, beating and severe burning, by inflicting injuries that dated back to when he was born 57 days earlier, authorities said.

Josela Posada pleaded guilty before Washoe District Judge Steven Elliott to the first-degree murder of her 8-week-old baby, Kristopher, who died Feb. 13, 2010. She was scheduled for a May 26 sentencing where she faces a term of life in prison. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials have also placed a hold on the El Salvadorian woman whom they said is in the country illegally.

During a preliminary hearing, baby Kristopher’s father, Orlando Vasquez, testified that Posada referred to the infant as a gay slur and had never wanted the child. Vasquez and Reno police detectives testified Posada admitted to them she struck the baby when she was angered by his crying.

Posada has an older daughter who was 15-months old when Kristopher died after Posada said she had put him to sleep in his crib. Deputy District Attorney Elliott Sattler said the girl was healthy and well cared for, and that she is in the custody of relatives.

Vasquez testified he was trying to get custody of his son and that Posada wouldn’t let him see the boy.

At the time of the baby’s death, Posada had been working as a housekeeper for an apartment complex on Kuenzli Street, where she also lived with her children.

Sattler said when Posada discovered her baby had died, she waited 45 minutes before a friend called police. She also did not seek medical attention for the child.

He said an autopsy showed the underweight baby had injuries to his brain that were consistent with shaking, that both of his retinas were detached, and that he suffered several rib fractures, a broken femur, had whiplash, spinal cord injuries, and first and second-degree burns on his abdomen and groin area.

The autopsy also showed that the injuries dated from the time he was born until the day he died.

A teenage girl who babysat Kristopher testified that he was always screaming and shrieking as if he were in severe pain. Posada blamed the boy’s burn blisters on "diaper rash," the girl said.

Multiply 365 Day 89 - Best year ever?

     Today is the day that I get to make it official.  Those of you that have been following my daily updates know that about a month ago I posed a question to the blog, hoping to get suggestions but when none came I opted to make a decision for myself.  The question revolved around the long running blog feature knows as the change meter and whether or not I could add something to the total which had a definite financial measurement, but wasn't actual cash.  The object in question was a monthly Port Authority bus pass, which I found on the first of March.  The pass allowed me as many rides as I would like (within Zone 1) without paying any additional money for the entire month.  Because I found the pass on the very first day of the month, I literally had all month with which to use it.  And a pass of that sort has a specific value, that being $90.  So I had an item and a value, and because I do not drive, it had a real world application for me.  Since I got no input whether to add the $90 to the total or not, I made a unilateral decision, if I could keep the pass the entire month without losing it then it would get added to the total, I got someone else's $90 worth of use out of it.  But if I were to lose the pass, then all the value of the pass would be stricken from the record, in order to claim it I had to keep it for 31 days.

Well today is that moment of truth, and given it is 10pm at night chances are I am not going to be running out to catch a bus before midnight, so I have gotten my 31 days of use.  That means we have a new change meter total, $90 plus and additional $4.95 in money I found for an obvious total of $94.95 gets added to the kitty and when we look at the tote board for our running count that number was $196.39 bringing our grand total to $291.34.  So I now have 9 months to find less than $9 to crack the $300 mark, after struggling for months just to get over $200. 

I like when blog entries are this easy.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Multiply 365 Day 88 - Divided we fall

      I was checking out videos on Youtube the other day, old music videos to be precise, when I decided to check on an old favorite band of mine, Gene Loves Jezebel.  All of their good music occurred in the late 80s-early 90s, but while I was watching one of their videos (I think it was "Suspicion") I noticed under the Youtube video box that Gene Loves Jezebel would be playing in Pittsburgh on April 2nd at the Hard Rock Cafe.  Now I think we can all admit that I am not one of those early adopter type people so it should come as no shock that despite being here for a few years now, I have yet to visit the Hard Rock Cafe.  I guess it is just the mentality that when they start popping up like McDonald's franchises, one has to wonder just how special an actual Hard Rock experience could be.  But this was a chance to see a favorite band and do the Hard Rock thing at the same time, I could kill two birds with one stone, if I were the bird killing sort (I am when it comes to chicken).

The thing is, I had thought the band broke up, so were they doing a reunion tour, or was it going to be something like Foghat, who are relegated to playing county fairs in hopes that someone may remember they had a song right around the time indoor plumbing became all the rage.  If only it could have been so Foghat simple.

The band did indeed breakup, with both bands claiming to be Gene Loves Jezebel, which made everything quite confusing for a while.  So legal papers were filed, both in the states and in Europe and the fall out  is such that one of the bands can be called Gene Loves Jezebel in the United States, but not overseas, and the other band can use the name overseas but not in the United States.  My mind flashed back to Godzilla vs. King Kong.  For those that don't know what happened, there were two movies made, a Japanese movie where Godzilla won and an American version where King Kong won.  What was most memorable about those movies was, well nothing.  They both sucked more ass than someone running a vacuum cleaner over Rosanne Arnold's backside.

Suffice it to say, birds will not be killed, stones will not be thrown, instead I will just have to remember a simpler time.


Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Multiply 365 Day 87 - Easy street

Yeah, I think I blabbed more than enough yesterday that I am going to relax a bit rather than fire off another long entry this evening.  So far it has been a peaceful week at work, the Art Institute is on one of their quarter breaks, meaning our business has slowed a bit.  I actually had my ordering done a half hour ahead of time for a change, and that is while also fixing one of the registers at our other store and working on updating prices and removing stuff from the systme that we no longer sell. 

Truth betold though, I am more into reading tonight than writing.  I am on the second of thgree books I bought from Amazon, a funny book on the history of fantasy football which means I am probably the only person who frequents this blog who would actually like it.  Good thing I am the person that is reading it then.

Anyway, I am off to bed for some reading and some sleeping and hopefully some sort of idea as to what I will blog about next.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Multiply 365 Day 86 - TITIT #8, You didn't think I was done, did you?

I've been lack in firing off of these particular diatribes, the TITIT as it were, but since I have time right now and the TV is cooperating by there being nothing on (I swear I saw Kid Rock polluting my TV screen at one point) I might as well get down to business.

First I was getting all settled in for a night of "Chuck", which would have been fine by me, it probably also would have meant I wouldn't be doing this particular entry this evening, but the show was preempted for some music pat someone on the back nonsense that happens far more frequently than it should, but before the preemption could begin there was a speech given by our fearless leader, Barack Obama, regarding the military action that is taking place in Libya. I suppose I should have watched with rapt attention for some piece of serious information, but after watching oh so many of these things I know that is never the case. Worse still, no matter what he said, Obama wasn't going to change a single solitary mind on the matter, so I am at a loss for just what the point is. Those who like him will cite his words incessantly as though they were the stone tablets coming down from the mount as proof that the current course of action is the correct one, while those that don't would almost never be convinced that there was any sort of justification for what is taking place. Which is why I tire of these types of press conferences in general, they shed so little light that they become almost pointless. I'd rather he just come out and say, listen this is what we are doing, for those that don't agree, lick my taint. And that be it. Because it would be about and convincing as anything he could possibly say, so there really is no need to argue in flowery words when those words will be forgotten almost as soon as they are spoken.

I wish I could say that is my only issue with television these days, but it isn't even close. As I was sitting here the other evening, I forget what I was working on on the computer, but I will sometimes have the TV on above me, more as background noise (though not right now, for now that is Pandora's job) than anything else. But whatever it was I was working on, apparently the Celebrity Apprentice was on. I have railed against this show in the past, so I am not going to go down the road of the assclowns that opt to kiss Donald Trump's ass for a few seconds of screen time, but for how the show ended. By and large I hate reality shows with a genuine passion (though I do make exceptions for Deadliest Catch and Ice Road Truckers to name two) but once someone agrees to appear on one of these piss poor attempts at entertainment, it might be nice if they actually try. But four times in the past two weeks people have volunteered to leave rather than compete (a fifth person tried but didn't succeed, that in and of itself is a skill worth noting), but if you are going to quit then don't sign up for the show in the first place. I don't want the speech of how I am sacrificing myself for the team, others need this more than me, blah, blah freaking blah. Once you sign the dotted line to appear, you are now there for my entertainment, so dance monkey.

I made note of Pitt losing to Butler in the NCAA tournament, due in large part to what Pitt was expected to do after receiving one of the tournament's 4 #1 seeds and yet they were bounced after the first weekend, losing to Butler. Butler last year made the NCAA championship game, but this year's squad wasn't as good, managing only to get a #8 seed in the tourney, so when Pitt lost to them in was an upset and all of the squawking that comes with a team allegedly underachieving, but a weekend later and the loss doesn't look quite as bad, with Butler making as far as the Final Four and now just a game away from appearing in their second straight National Championship game. So maybe, just maybe, Pitt didn't lose to that bad of a team after all. Not that their loss isn't still a disappointment, it most certainly is, but they didn't lose to a bunch of scrubs who were happy just to be there either.

The Port Authority of Pittsburgh, the organization that runs public transit in the city of Pittsburgh (buses, subway) on Sunday instituted a 15% service cut because of the often cited budget problems. Among those cuts were some routes that were eliminated, others that saw service reduced, layoffs and a closing of one of their bus garages. This after recently increasing fares once again, because of those same argued budget problems. All of that is bad enough, but if you are going to reduce service and cuts routes, one would hope that the ones that remain would be more properly run, yet there I was waiting for a bus this morning that showed up 15 minutes late. If anyone ever wanted to take a doctorate level course in mismanagement, I bet you could get a job with the Port Authority upon graduation.

Memo to NBC, it is not a premiere if the show has been on for months. I say this regarding their recent promos for "Law & Order: Los Angeles", where they are touting a premiere on April 11th. The problem is that the show has been on for a while now, the only difference between what has been on previously and what will be on come April is they are killing off a character. I can't really say that it is a beloved character either, given the show is only half a season old, rather it is a stunt killing, that by knocking off one of their characters they might draw an audience via a gimmick rather than quality writing. Maybe it is just that time for the L&O franchise, god knows it has been on forever and is harder to rid yourself of than a sexually transmitted disease, but packaging a character being killed off as a premiere for a new show reeks of desperation. If anyone wants to see desperation that bad, might I suggest you come and watch me try to pick up chicks on a Friday night. It will be far more entertaining, I promise.

On a final note, I would like to make mention of the fact that since I added the little global tracker on the side of the page we have now passed the 2000 page view moment. While I would like to take credit for about 1900 of them personally, according to the doohickey people have checked in from 6 continents (get on the ball already Antarctica) so just want to say thanks everyone. Hopefully I haven't scared you off yet. I need something for the next blog after all.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Multiply 365 Day 86 - Sunday, Sunday

    I will not waste a lot of your time today, promise.  I spent most of the day doing, well, nothing.  The big accomplishment was making vegetable beef soup.  That was it.  No big breakfast adventures this weekend, lots of sleeping in instead.  Saturday I slept till 10am, then putzed around the apartment for another hour or so before heading into work.  I had my usual Saturday order to place plus I had the added task of updating all of our dairy prices.  We were sent a new pricing sheet from our dairy distributor, but until Ed gave me a list of where he wanted the prices set everything had been running under the old prices.  Of course he didn't do this while he was in Pittsburgh so he had to fax me the prices from his home in Florida and then I had to have enough time to go and check the prices for everything and change those that needed fixing. 

So I had a little extra work for Saturday, then I got there and saw that the coolers had barely been touched, so what should have been at most a three hour day turned into a 6 hour one, which in a way is good because it almost makes up for the day I took off.  Still it was much longer than I had anticipated and basically meant Saturday was a de facto work day.  So the only day I had off was Sunday and while I had thought about getting up early and maybe making the trek to Pamela's I didn't get out of bed until 8am, and I figured until I got dressed and got there, around 8:30 or so, while I would be able to get a seat, I don't doubt that it would be in the process of filling up and when I am at breakfast solo I like to read and to much noise and traffic isn't conducive for that, so instead I stayed in and got coffee form the corner store and at Tastycakes.  Not exactly the breakfast of champions, but after staying up late to catch some rugby 7s from Hong Kong, coffee wand pastry was just fine with me, it hit the two essential food groups, caffeine and sugar.

Then I made a big batch of my beef veggies soup, just because it is still cold outside.  While it had warmed up a couple of weeks ago, tonight it is once again supposed to be something like 17 degrees, which I am not looking forward to come time for work.  And after a nice warm batch of soup I did what any normal person like myself would do, I napped. 

Now I am just finishing off the day with this blog entry before another nap.  Which is perfectly fine with me.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Multiply 365 Day 85 - Visual evidence

This would indeed be a followup to the last blog entry, which was incredibly short due to time constraints.  Allow me to start with a brief description of what happened that led to all of the following events. 

I was at work Friday, trying my best to complete what was a grueling week.  The Pepsi order on Thursday was particularly tough, 236 cases in all, but it wasn't the only thing.  I had to fight with a couple of vendors to get some repairs done, one cooler went down, the other was an issue with our fountain soda machine, there was rearranging required for us to get a new dairy cooler, all of the ordering that I do and the fact that our beverage sales have gone up, which means more up and down the steps with product for yours truly.  Our Pepsi rep told me on Wednesday that our sales for the year are up 49% over last year at this time, which I am sure is due in large part to a few specials that we have signed up for.  But all of that extra sales means extra work as well. 

Perhaps with that in mind, Brian pulled me aside Friday before he left.  When he first asked to speak to me I thought it was going to be bad news, after all the Pepsi invoice was over $3500 on Thursday, the Sledd order was another $18,500 so I have been spending money, which is not always a good thing.  After all, while we make money we are not a bottomless pit of money, which I try to take into consideration.  As things turned out though, it wasn't bad news that Brian had for me, but he wanted to know if I wanted to go to the Penguins game that night.  Which anyone who knows me knows the answer to that question before it is even asked.  So Brian reached into his briefcase and pulled out two tickets for the game, he asked if I could find someone to go with and I said I was pretty sure I could.  The tickets weren't the same as the ones I had earlier this season, which I won on Facebook from Isaly's, these were better, Captain Morgan club seats with a face value of $152 each.  To top it off he handed me an additional $40 in case I wanted to get a couple of beverages while I was there.

So my first issue was getting someone to go to the game with.  On short notice and with me still at work for a couple of hours that isn't as easy as it would seem.  I snuck into the office and dropped a message to my aunt Amy to see if her husband Fred would like to go.  He went with me to the last game, and given that he lives close to Pittsburgh.  But because I was at work I didn't have access to any other phone numbers or what not and I can't just sit and play on the computer, so until I could get home that was about all I could do as far as finding someone to go with.

I got back to my apartment around 3:30pm, the game didn't start until 7pm.  From my apartment I can probably get to the arena in about 30 minutes, including time to walk to the bus stop.  So I had a couple of hours to work with on this end to see if my aunt had hopped on Facebook to respond to my message.    I checked but didn't see anything, so I made a couple of bologna sandwiches to tide me over, did some web surfing and worked on some Facebook apps. 

I was just about to the point where I figured I would be going by myself, I hopped into the shower, changed clothes and sat down in front of the computer again when just before 6pm Amy hopped online, I asked if she got the message and she replied that she had just gotten in (she was taking my cousin Sarah to get her prom dress) and that Fred was just pulling in from work, but she would ask him.  About two minutes later she said Fred would call me, and literally she no more than wrote that than the phone rang, Fred saying that he would like to go, but he might be a little late, it is about a 30 minute drive form his place into town, which can be made longer depending on traffic.  No problem I thought, I wasn't worried about missing the national anthem or anything.  We agreed to where we would meet outside the arena and then I darted out the door for a night of Penguins hockey.

I made it to the bus stop in about 5 minutes, and thinking I probably still had some time, fired off a cigarette.  One bus came by, but I still had half of a cancer stick left, so I passed on it in favor of the next one, which I caught as did a number of people in Penguins garb, so I knew I wasn't the only one with similar plans Friday night.

The bus ride took about 15 minutes and I was there in plenty of time.  All I had to do was wait for Fred, so I broke out ye olde trusty camera and fired off a few piccies, starting with the venue.



Since I was just waiting I took in some of the surroundings, including the crowd waiting to get in (amazingly at 20 minutes to game time they still hadn't opened the doors yet) and a little game that was set up outside by the Degree people where you could play virtual goalie, and by just playing you got a Penguins T shirt.


Eventually Fred did show up, and just about the time he got there they went ahead and opened the doors, so we headed inside.  I wanted to see how good the seats would be and lets just say that I was not disappointed in the section at all.  The Captain Morgan Club encompasses a few sections of seats, and you are first led into an area apart from the masses that have to rummage about the concourse for concessions and what not.  You pass through a glass door where they check to make sure that your ticket is one of the tickets that grant you access and then you are let in, and there is a full service bar, as well as a few concession areas for just those people that have access to the club.  Mind you, nothing is free in the club, you still pay the outrageous vendor prices that you would elsewhere in the building, but you don't fight through throngs to get anything either, and un;like others who could only get beer as the alcoholic beverage of choice, we could get anything just by walking up to the bar. 

Since it was close to game time we didn't do a lot of exploring in the club, rather we just tried to find our seats, and good seats they were, 18 rows back from the ice and they were all cushiony and stuff.  I never want to sit with the masses again, lol.  And we did make it in time for the national anthem, sung as always at Penguins games by Jeff Jimmerson.  Then it was time for hockey.


This is the part of the blog where I should be filling the page with lots of action from the game, pictures of goals being scored or fights breaking out, except there were none.  Not that the game was boring, just uneventful.  Consider that the shot total at the end of the first period was Pittsburgh 3  New Jersey 1.  It was like I went to a hockey game and a soccer match broke out.  Part of it was due to the fact that the Penguins had played the night before and the Devils were playing with only two defensemen (most hockey teams dress 6).

We went up to the club after the first period and grabbed a beer and bs ed for a bit before the second period got underway, but the second and third period, while a little more active were equally uneventful as by the end the third period the game was still scoreless.  So the game was headed to overtime, 4 on 4 hockey for the next 5 minutes, with the first goal being the winner.  Except it wasn't, because after the overtime the scoreboard still looked like this


That means for the first time in my life I was going to witness shootout hockey.  The shootout was a rule instituted a few years back to break ties, before that if a game ended tied after overtime it would be called just that in the record books, a tie.  But since the addition of the rule, each team picks three shooters and each one is given a chance to beat beat the opposing goaltender on a breakaway from center ice, with the teams scoring the most times winning.  The Penguins selected for their three shooters Kris Letang, Alexi Kovalev and Chris Neal. 

First up was Letang

But Letang's shot ended up sailing over the net.  New Jersey failed to score on their first attempt as well, so it was still 0-0.  Next up was Kovalev

Kovalev also failed to get his shot by Martin Brodeur, but again New jersey failed to capitalize and Ilya Kovalchuk couldn't beat Marc Andre Fluery, so the shootout remained deadlocked at 0-0.

Up next for Pittsburgh was Chris Neal.  If a shootout isn't decided after 3 rounds, the teams take turns selected one player off of their bench to participate and I am sitting there thinking that the way this had ben going so far, we could be there all night.  Thankfully Neal broke the Pittsburgh drought

Neal managed to get his shot up over Brodeur and it hit the crossbar and went into the net, leaving New jersey one last chance to tie it and extend the shootout but one last save by Fleury and the Penguins go home winners, 1-0.

So I am now 2-0 in games I have went to this season, and after a game like that I was left asking myself a simple question, why would anyone give up their hockey tickets?  Don't get me wrong, I am thankful that Brian gave them to me, but for the life of me, if I had season tickets, you would have to pry them out of my cold, dead paws before you would ever get them.


Friday, March 25, 2011

Multiply 365 Day 84 - Quickly, quickly

Not a lot of time for blogging today, seems that the boss decided to hand me a pair of hockey tickets for tonight's game (Penguins vs Devils), so I am home long enough to do a couple of online thingies, shower, change and head out to the game.  Rather than blow off the 365 project I gfigured I would give a quick shout here and time permitting, come back later on.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Multiply 365 Day 83 - By any other name

     So I am perusing the web this evening as I am sometimes wont to do when I ran into this little piece of ridiculessness.  I don't think I have been this offended at proverbial government double speak since the Bush Adminstration ended hunger in the US, because they renamed it "low food security".  Worse, it now has one of the worst songs of all time stuck in my head which is something George Bush could never do.  To know how warped my mind is, I read the linked blog post and started humming the "Electric Slide" in my head, "You've got a bombing, it's kenetic, wonky wonky wonky".

    Anyone who sat through the second link all I can say is I'm sorry.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Multiply 365 Day 82 - The Vagina Monologues


Once again we find me writing from bed. Not that I am ready to go to bed yet, but because I am running a virus scan on the other computer, so this seemed as good a way to bang out a blog as anything. I got my smokes with me, iced tea beside the bed and Pandora running in a second window. That pretty much sets the tone here.

I learned something recently, I am becoming more comfortable in my world view, because it is at least consistent. The reason I say this is you should see people, who were against removing Saddam Hussein from power are now glowingly speaking of how it is good to remove Qadaffi, and vice versa. These opinions are dictated almost exclusively by politics, if there guy did it it sucked, if my did it it was good. My world view is a little different, Qadaffi and Hussein were both scum bags, and I have little use for scum bags. So if they are both gone (or one is gone, the other is in the process of being gone) I am not losing sleep over either one. That doesn't mean something equally bad, if not worse, couldn't appear in the vacuum their removal creates, but having two fewer scum bags killing their own people is perfectly fine in my book.

Okay, enough with the political pontificating, nothing good can come from it. Besides I need to save my energy for tomorrow at work, where I had the audacity to order 232 cases from Pepsi, a big order even by our standards. And after taking off last Thursday (where we only had 169 cases come in) I really can't be taking the day off. Just hope my muscles are all primed for the experience, because I imagine by tomorrow at this time they will be very sore.

Not that that is the reason I am in bed already, as much as I should probably be resting up for the big delivery, it just so happens that my book was on my bed and I decided to finish the last couple of chapters in it so I could move on to the next one. At some point I will update the Neverending Thread, but for now I have updated Shelfari, and that is good enough for me.

One of the main topics of conversation at work was the most recent Asshat, just because it was so damn funny. I am sorry, but anyone who can jam that much stuff in their vagina, all I can say is “Wow!”. Well that and make jokes about it, like wouldn't it be fun to go shopping with her, because imagine all of the stuff she could steal, or if she is filling out a deposit slip at the bank, does she get a pen out of her purse, or does she just pull it out of her cooch? And I still don't know just what that 22 cents was for?

I have just one week remaining until we find out if I will be adding a considerable amount of money to the change meter or not. So far I haven't lost the bus pass, but it is due to expire next week and while I do have a smaller sum to add to the kitty, if I get to add the entire value of the bus pass that will definitely make it the biggest year in change meter history with 9 months left to add to the total.

I just realized how disjointed this entry really is. I guess that happens some times. My mind is more worried about getting thoughts on the page than actually organizing them in any sort of coherent manner. I will save being organized for a later time.

I could be watching TV I suppose, but their really isn't anything on. I am still waiting for Saturday when Universal Sports will be airing rugby 7s from Hong Kong. 12 straight hours of rugby coverage. I doubt I will get to watch all of it, I have to work Saturday morning after all, and while I don't have any breakfast excursions planned I still have to make the sojourn into work to bang out a Monday order.

Okay, I will do us all a favor and stop before this becomes even harder to follow along than it already is. Though as I leave the page I am left with one question, if I took all of my blog entries to this point, and the number has to be in the thousands by now if we include all of the old 360 stuff plus the years of toiling away at Multiply, could they all fit in the Asshat's cooch?

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Multiply 365 Day 81 - I'd rather be reading


Are there any details I can bore you with this evening? I imagine so, after all I am about a chapter or two from adding to the Neverending Thread, thankfully I still have a couple of books to read after that but still the reading material is flying by a little too quickly. I guess that is because the material has been interesting enough that I have been making time to read as opposed to my normal process of only reading on the bus or before bed. Usually I will sneak in some reading time after work now, and if there is nothing on TV I am almost at a 50/50 split between just putzing around online or opting for my book(s) instead. I just hope I don't break my glasses, otherwise my life could bare a striking resemblance to one of those “Twilight Zone” episodes.

On the bright side, if I were to break my glasses I could take pleasure in all of the things I couldn't see, like the fact “Cheaters” is on my TV right now, and a life without visual evidence of Charlie Sheen isn't a bad thing either (Charlie, we are laughing at you not with you) and not having visual verification of some of the things I eat could only make them go down easier. But then I would also miss the rugby 7s matches that are on TV this Saturday, something I am looking forward to, if only because so little rugby is on TV in the States, which probably also explains why I can watch curling and not think it is a bad derivative of shuffleboard.

Really that is about all there is to report, save for the Asshat, which I gave you earlier and since one of my rules was that an Asshat couldn't be a 365 entry, it is not. This is instead. Merry Christmas!

Asshat - Out of the box

I actually heard about this at work today, it was mentioned on the radio and I needed to make all of my fellow readers aware.  What constitutes this particular Asshat you may ask?  How about using your vagina as a clown car for pharmaceuticals.  That is what wins it this week for Karin Mackaliunas.  My only question is what was the 22 cents for, in case she needed to make change perhaps?


Authorities in Pennsylvania arrested a 27-year-old woman who they say hid more than 100 items -- including 54 bags of heroin and loose change -- in her vagina.

Investigators took Karin Mackaliunas into custody last weekend after she was involved in a motor vehicle crash, according to police in Scranton. Officers in nearby Dunmore heard about the accident and, suspecting that she had been involved in the recent burglary of a local inn, asked Scranton police to detain Mackaliunas for questioning.

During a routine search, Scranton police Officer Nancy Baumann found three bags of heroin inside Mackaliunas' coat, records show. Baumann placed Mackaliunas in the back of the patrol car and was taking her to police headquarters when she noticed Mackaliunas fidgeting. The two women then got into a struggle, after which Mackaliunas asked to speak with another officer, whom she told she had "hidden more heroin in her vagina," according to the criminal complaint.

Investigators took Mackaliunas to Community Medical Center for further examination, police said. Doctors there retrieved "up 54 bags of heroin, 31 empty bags used to package heroin, 8.5 prescription pills and $51.22" during a cavity search, according to the criminal complaint.

Mackaliunas was jailed on $25,000 bail on charges of possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance, possession of drug paraphernalia and two counts of possession of a controlled substance, police said.

She is expected to appear in court for a preliminary hearing sometime today. It is not clear whether she has an attorney.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Multiply 365 Day 80 - Fallout

For those of you that read yesterday's entry, this is the followup.  For those that didn't, go back there then come back here.  It wasn't so much a matter of will Matt Cooke get suspended after his antics in yesterday's Penguins-Rangers game, but really just a matter of how long.    And it did not take long for the NHL to respond, suspending Cooke for the remainder of the season (10 games) and the first round of the NHL playoffs (best of seven series), so the suspension could be anywhere from 14 to 17 games.  The hit to Matt Cooke's pocketbook will be $219,512.20.  And it doesn't sound like the organization really has Cooke's back on this one, at least after reading the statement from the Penguins general manager Ray Shero

"The suspension is warranted because that's exactly the kind of hit we're trying to get out of the game."  "Head shots have no place in hockey." 

Depending on the Penguins ability to move past the first round of the playoffs, with those odds being a coin flip with the current roster (the odds improve a little if Sidney Crosby is skating and playing again, but that has yet to be determined)  the following video might be the last thing you see Matt Cooke do in a Pengiuins uniform.


Sunday, March 20, 2011

Multiply 365 Day 79 - Refresher course

     I believe I said this once before ( but I guess it bears repeating.  Mario Lemieux can not complain about cheap shots in the sport of hockey as long as he continues to cut checks for the likes of Eric Goddard and Matt Cooke.  Sidney Crosby this week just started to return to skating after suffering a concussion the first week of January.  He has been out of action for better than two months now and there is still no guarantee that he will return this season,. though the fact he is at least back on skates is somewhat promising.  

     That being said, I was sitting here today watching the Penguins-Rangers game on TV and what should happen?  Well, Matt Cooke happened is what.  With the Penguins having a 2-1 lead in the third period of their contest, Cooke decides that it would be a great time to go about throwing an elbow into Ryan Callahan's head.  That my friends is a 5 minute major penalty, a game ejection and most likely will result in some sort of suspension from the league, since Cooke is a repeat offender.  Of course the Rangers would score twice on the power play and end up with 4 third period goals on their way to a 5-2 and I am left with the same question I have had since last year, when is this madness going end?  When is Lemieux going to stop turning a blind eye to the very cheap shot artists that are in his own employ?  Because as long as he keeps these types of people in his organization, any complaints he makes such as "We, as a league, must do a better job of protecting the integrity of the game and the safety of our players." one of two things will occur; either those complaints will fall on deaf ears, and/or Lemieux will be branded as a hypocrite for bringing them up in the first place.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Multiply 365 Day 78 - Busted

What can I say, other than I don't have to watch college basketball for the rest of spring.  As I mentioned before, I was involved in two tournaments, emphasizing the past tense on both of them.  One I was required to make one pick each round against the point spread, the other I was required to pick all of the games, down to a national champion. It only took one day of basketball to make both of those contests irrelevant, though one was solely the fault of the people running the tournament.

In the one where I shall remain blameless, like I said we were required to pick one game in each round of the tournament against the point spread.  I did well the first day, had UNC -14 and they won by 15, it was close but I had snagged my first win.  So I waited to be able to put in my second pick.  And waited.  And waited.  When I finally went to bed somewhere around 2:30am last night they still hadn't posted any point spreads for the Saturday/Sunday games.  So i did what I always do on Saturday, went to breakfast and then work and when I got home to log in and make a pick for the Saturday/Sunday games I was told that I was too late and thereby couldn't enter a pick at all.  hell, even when I logged in they still didn't have point spreads on 8 of the 16 games that were to be played.  Of the 8 that were left, I wanted to take Richmond (a 4 point favorite) so I emailed them with my pick and the problems I had with the app (the Richmond game hadn't started yet, it wouldn't begin for another 5 hours or so) and of course nothing was done about it.  It was little consolation that in fact Richmond did end up winning and covering the 4 point margin, I was fucked anyway.

The other contest, where I had to pick the entire tourney, again I was doing okay starting off with a 25-7 record through the first 32 games and picking two upsets in the first round correctly.  And as the day progressed it continued to look good, again it was Richmond who I had making the round of 16, being the most pleasant surprise but all in all I was doing okay on most of my picks.  Then came the Pitt game.  Yeah, the sort of homer pick, the team I had winning the entire tournament, the team that spent most of the year in the top 5 of the polls, the team that earned a #1 seed in the tournament.  That Pitt team.  And they did what they always do, which is fail to live up to expectations.  But even better they did it in spectacular fashion.  Down by 13 at one point and 8 at the half, Pitt managed to take a lead late in the game, albeit a 1 point one and had that lead with less than 10 seconds to go with Butler having the ball.  But a driving missed layup, followed by a put back by Butler gave them the lead by 1 with about 3 seconds remaining.  Pitt manages to inbound the ball and attempt a half court shot with around 1 second left.  The shot was nowhere close but amazingly the Pitt player was fouled on the shot and would go to the line for two free throws and a chance at the lead.  The first one goes through and we are tied.  The second bounces off of the back iron and Butler rebounds with .8 seconds left and are fouled on the rebound, 90 feet from their basket, but being in the double bonus, the foul resulted in two shots for Butler, they hit one and won 71-70, thereby making my bracket all but useless. 

I am going to go drink heavily now.

Stolen Content - Lipstick on a pig

Let's just say that this was crafted better than I would have done it.  And maybe softer too.  If I were a colmnist and forced to come out with x number of letters or words each week and the topic du jour was Charlie Sheen I can honestly say my editors would be most disappointed when my column was one word long and all of 7 letters; dumbass.  That is why I am not a columnist and Mark Morford is. 

A grateful nation thanks Charlie Sheen

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

It is a time of great reckoning. A time when an anxious, troubled nation huddles in tight clusters of fear and uncertainty, shot through with far too much war, economic grief, Tea Party idiocy, iffy cell phone reception and low-level karmic doom.

But wait! Just when all seems lost ... look! Yonder! Could it be? It is! A dazzling beacon winks out from the savage darkness. We are saved! Let us now wheel in the hookers and Veuve Clicquot and large bazookas full of cocaine! God bless America.

Behold, he hath risen. Every generation, every year, every gaseous cultural hiccup, a new god/demon/pariah emerges upon whom we can project all our fantasies and neurosis, fears and judgments, outermost Tweets and innermost grunts. Said humanoid must be an attention slut of great self-import who effortlessly flips between conquering hero and ravaged victim, depending on our collective whim. Last year? Tiger Woods, with a Mel Gibson/Lindsay Lohan chaser.

So far, 2011 is turning out to be Charlie Sheen's year, though it's still far too early to call it, and Miley Cyrus appears to be a single Ketamine porn shoot away from total cataclysm, who the hell knows what's happening to Lindsay and doesn't Adam Sandler appear to be on the knife edge of, well, something sadistic and chemically terminal? 'Tis quite the most tremendous thing about American celeb-death fetishism: No one has the slightest clue who might be next. Awesome.

This much we do know for sure: We are enthralled. Sheen came outta seemingly nowhere and exploded like a roman candle made of black diamonds, boundless drugs and unimaginable floods of money, spewing bloody shards of glass amidst hilarious, impossible syntax, happily raising his glistening middle finger to AA, God, the media and even our beloved President Bartlet, all at once.

And lo, the new savior was born. Or rather, revealed. Oozed forth. Popped like a cyst. And so on.

But oh, we have chosen well. Charlie does not disappoint. Much to our collective delight, Sheen has turned out to be some sort of smart-ass PR genius/careening train wreck of mediocre talent hitched to an artistically malformed TV show that freely rapes the brainstems of umpteen million viewers a week as it hawks Round Table Pizza and Toyota Camrys in between ghastly one-liners concocted by Klonopin-popping 12-year-olds who live in Malibu and still masturbate to

In other words, "Two and a Half Men" is (or rather, was) absolutely perfect. It is quintessential, premium-grade American schlock, the finest in vacuous, moderately demeaning bulls--t entertainment we can possibly concoct next to "Jersey Shore" and maybe Bristol Palin's upcoming book. It's a huge and blinding cubic zirconium of imminent soul death. What, too much? As if.

Hence and by extension, Charlie Sheen is perfect. A spectacularly middling actor of no real import with decent comic timing, a razor wit and a thing for cocaine, porn stars, polyamory, multiple kids and hilariously nonsensical, megalomaniacal verbal zingers, all oversprinkled with tantalizing dustings of domestic violence and tabloid sensationalism. Like we say about God, the devil and Karl Rove, if Sheen didn't exist, we'd have to invent him.

And why? Because, silly, as already mentioned: We are surrounded by anxiety and distress. We are overrun with Tea Party dingbats who want to arm college students and professors alike, wingnut maniacs who think science is a hoax and the president is a Muslim and/or raised in Kenya, Republicans who so openly despise women, sex, gays and themselves that they just can't help getting busted snorting meth in the gay fetish dungeon with teenage boys.

In short, the levels of hypocrisy and the lack of spiritual and intellectual education on display across the cultural spectrum, from church house to Congress, are so brutal it's no wonder millions of Americans do the only thing they know how to do -- turn to pop culture for salve and distraction, laugh track and a modicum of relief.

Problem is, the distractions must somehow match the level of our ferocious discontent. Gentle entertainments, art, spiritual work, poetry, NPR, a reasonable and calm-voiced president? This will not do. Our tormented and battered souls seek parity with the violent uncertainty we feel all around. Our pop culture Frankenstein must be infused with treacherously high levels of mania, dread, fantasy and looming, melodramatic death.

He hath risen, twitching, sweating profusely and spinning like a top. How long will it last? How long until something gives? Not long. Sheen is the perfect energetic match to what we see and feel all around us right now. He's a spectacularly fractured mirror reflecting the grotesque system that birthed him -- smart, funny, wasted, hugely overpaid, egomaniacal, sexy, violently unhealthy, perverted, overamped, creepy, unhinged, lacking all center, moral compass spinning like a Catharine wheel, entirely unable and unwilling to take a deeper look at root causes. Ain't that America.

You might say: Enough already. You might say: Far too much energy, time, media attention has been spent on Sheen as it is; it's not worth it, leave the poor guy alone, clearly he's spiraling out of control, is disturbingly bi-polar, an insomniac ("I don't sleep. I wait."), a fistful of Ambien and a 3 a.m. gunshot away from an ambulance ride to Cedars-Sinai and the Hollywood Cemetery.

Go ahead, say it's sad, tragic, that you feel bad for his kids or the dingbat women in his life. Or flip it all over and say it's sort of awesome and entertaining and man, what I wouldn't give to live like Sheen for a week, unbelievable parties and gasping media frenzies, babes galore and two million Twitter followers in four days, Scarface-grade piles of blow all leading up to the grand finale: a ferocious, Facebook-ready gun battle with the FBI in the end because, wow, what a way to go.

Doesn't matter. Say any of it or none; you're already in. You're a fragment of that mirror. Are we not proud? What delightful monsters we can create! What nefarious celebrity apparatus we hath wrought!

So thank you, Charlie, for embodying, absorbing and reflecting back all our best and worst tendencies, our darkest, most titillating fears and our wildest fantasies about sex and money, addiction and madness, fame and fiery death. We will surely consume you completely very soon, and you us. This is the good news, the sad news and the obvious news: It will all be over soon. God bless America.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Multiply 365 Day 77 - Bed time

Yes, a brief entry from the confines of my bed.  I am liking the new modem more and more when it comes to my apartment.  I do some of my best work in bed, it is not uncommon for me to have a pack of cigarettes on the table next to my bed as well as an ashtray, a beverage of some sort on the floor beside my bed and a book and my clock radio at the top of my bed.  Now with the wireless option on my modem, I am finding that I am taking the laptop to bed with me and working from it whilest I lie on my stomach.  I realize that wireless technology has been around for quite some time, but being the late adopter I am (I still refuse to get a cell phone after all) I was content to just have the laptop for road trips and not break it out on the homefront.  But with the free modem upgrade from Verizon earlier this year I am coming to grips with the idea that I am slowly getting technologically cooler, even if I am not any cooler in many other aspects of my life.

That being said I am not going to be spending much time on this entry, it is late and I have breakfast with Sammy planned in the morning, though I am suspect of his willingness to go. We tend to alternate who buys, though I am of the opinion that even if I am not schheduled to buy I will take money in case someone else is short on cash, and if I don't have enough cash then I don't go.  Still I am due to buy on the next foray into breakfast, but because of the example I have set about having cash just in case, Sammy is trying to follow my example, so no matter how much I tried reassuring him the last couple of days that I got this, he was still wavering on the idea.  So I will go to meet him in the morning, if he is there all is cool, if not I will head off to breakfast solo, I have plenty of reading material to work on that I can just as easily sit all by myself and enjoy a cheeseburger omelet or something equally tasty and be content with that.

For all of that to happen though I need to be getting some shut eye, and there is no better time to do that than right about now. 

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Multiply 365 Day 76 - Unscripted day off

     The NCAA tournament is barely underway, we are not even through the first set of games yet, but already a couple of upsets occurred which merit mention, since I was bold enough to post my bracket a couple of entries ago.  First was #13 seed Morehead State knocking off #4 seed Louisville.  I'll admit I didn't pick this one, I had Louisville winning this game, though losing the next one, so I am not sure how much it hurts.  Later in the same portion of the bracket #5 Vanderbilt lost to #12 Richmond, which I did pick.  In fact I had Richmond beating Louisville in the next round, the fact that they instead will play a lower seed instead in Morehead State makes me think my pick of Richmond making the Sweet 16 is looking smarter all the time.  Of course for all the patting on the back I am doing to myself for getting the Richmond game right, the big winner out of this would seem to be Kansas, the #1 seed in that region.  With the #4 and #5 seeds both gone, Kansas not making the Elite 8 would be a shocking upset.  

     Those of us in the Burgh can rest easy for a night, Pitt, the #1 seed in the Southeast region, easily advanced to the next round, where they will play the #8 seed Butler.  Thing is, Butler has a big run last year in making it to the title game before falling 61-59 to Duke in the national championship game, and Pitt has been known in the past to fail to live up to expectations come tourney time.  

     I am entered in two bracket contests this year.  One is being sponsored by JT the Brick, host of an overnight sports call in show on Fox Sports Radio.  I usually listen to his show before I go to bed on week nights.  He is doing a contest with his listeners and those people that signed up on his Facebook page were invited to compete.  Of course that means that there are literally hundreds of entries, so I will not end up being the smartest guy in the room, though I am probably among a smaller number that actually had Richmond winning.

     The other contest I am involved in is over at Gyrosports.  Unlike the JT the Brick contest which requires you to pick the entire tournament, at Gyro you are only required to pick one game per round.  Sounds easy, right?  The trick is that unlike just filling out a bracket, in Gyro your pick is against the betting line or the spread in the gambling vernacular.  On the plus side, technically you only have to get 6 games right to win, the prize being $5000, the minus being that the point spread does a lot to level the playing field.  I took North Carolina over Long Island University in the first round, the stipulation being I had to spot LIU 16 pts.  Again I do not expect to win, but there were reasons for signing up, the first being that you got 8 Swagbucks for participating, plus another 5 for picking a game in the first round, whether you were correct or not.  The second being that after each round there is a raffle for 10,000 swagbucks and you get entries for each game you get correct, plus any your referrals get correct.  I nabbed two referrals for the contest, I don't know how active they will be in the contest, but every raffle entry helps.  Besides I need to build up my Amazon account after spending most of my cash over there.  

     I did get my delivery from Amazon today. I called off of work since I wasn't feeling well, which I am sure will piss people off at work, but after yesterday I pretty much don't care. The reps from Pepsi came in the store, to place our order for today and to do some other promotional things, such as retag the coolers for our current 2 for $2.22 promotion on 20 oz bottles, to bring a couple of new glides for the coolers and to talk about the upcoming Gatorade promotion with me.  As part of their visit they left some coupons for the store, including one that says if you buy 2 20oz bottles of a Pepsi product, you get a free 20 os bottle of Sierra Mist (or Pepsi Max, but we have had that product before with limited success, so we have since removed it).  I asked the reps if this coupon was good with the current promotion, they assured me it was so I went ahead and hung the requisite coupons on the cooler doors.  About a half hour later a lady comes in, buys a 20 oz bottle of cherry Crush, a 20 oz bottle of Pepsi and wanted to use the coupon for the Sierra Mist.  Shay, who was on register at the time, proceeds to argue with the customer over the coupon and was in the process of coming down to the office with the Crush in hand, when I asked what was up.  She explained everything to me and I said it was fine, we get Crush from Pepsi and it was part of the promotion.  Since I was headed upstairs anyway, I followed Shay up and they ran the transaction through and then it starts again about how Crush isn't a Pepsi product. To which I say, I buy the stuff every week, I know exactly where we get it from.  Well the bottle says 7 Up, which is true,  but many products are made by one company and another has the distribution rights, in Pittsburgh Crush is distributed by Pepsi.  One would think that would be the end of it, but Shay continues to complain at the register, enlisting another cashier, Stephanie in joining in.  How can they hang coupons about this, blah, blah, blah.  Finally I had had enough after this had gone on for  5 minutes after the customer had left and just bellowed out, "You know, it would have taken 5 seconds to walk back to the fucking cooler and find out for yourself?"  My tolerance for stupidity is non existent, and incessant questioning and complaining about something that I provided an adequate answer to to begin with was just enough to officially piss me off.  So when today arrived and I felt like shit in the morning, while I normally would have struggled through it, today I just didn't care.  It wasn't worth the aggravation.  That means that, unless someone filled the void I left, no order was placed for Friday, nor was I there to help put away the Pepsi order (170 cases) or the Arizona order (38 cases) and more than likely no one bothered to put an order in for our other store as well.  maybe I will get lucky and someone did, technically Tom is trained at Universal and Sammy at our store, but I ain't betting on it.  

     Not that staying home from work alleviated my anger i the least.  Rather I was tucked away in bed, trying to feel better when the phone rang.  Thinking it might be work with a question I strolled over to the phone to see that it was the Pittsburgh Tribune Review, the same paper that a few moons back I had a rather blunt encounter with their telephone sales people a few months ago.  One would have thought that it meant they would no longer pursue trying to sell me their newspaper, but it isn't the case.  Just the opposite in fact.  It is not uncommon to receive two and three calls a week from them now, pitching the same tired song about what special the paper is offering now.  getting me out of bed for this was just poking the hornet's nest, so I pick up the phone and instantly the person on the phone goes into her sales pitch.  The woman on the phone starts with the sales pitch, and I say I am not interested.  The thing was, she didn't even break stride, she just kept right on with her pitch.  Again I say I am not interested.  She didn't even stop talking, just kept right on going.  A third time.  The same thing occurs.  Finally I literally say, "Are you even listening to me?" and that doesn't stop her, she is still reading the script that was no doubt right in front of her phone.   That was enough for me, I just cut in, my rant fully rehearsed in my head.  "Listen, I am fucking sick and tired of you assholes calling me two and three times a week.  I don't want your fucking paper and if you continue to call me I will hire a lawyer and sue your fucking ass for harassment.  Now are you listening?"  The other end of the call went quiet, followed about 20 seconds later by a click as she hung up the line.  Apparently that was unexpected in the script she was given.

      While I was off work I did manage to get a couple of small thing done.  Mostly just walking to the mailbox to send my landlord some money and a copy of next years lease that I had signed, and also an entry into he Penguins Cap Trick challenge.  The Cap Trick game is a game sponsored by 7Up, where there are words hidden under caps of 7 Up products (an no, that doesn't include Crush for all of the smartasses out there) and if you spell out certain phrases you can then be entered into a raffle for Penguins tickets and merchandise.  I managed to cobble together the phrase "A Great Day for Jockey", a phrase that former Pens coach Bob Johnson used to say, and mailed it off today.  Not that having the phrase is a guarantee of winning anything, but at least I have a chance now.

      Well I have bitched and moaned long enough, time to retire to a good book or some TV or something.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Multiply 365 Day 75 - Quickly, quickly

Trying to get this in under the gun, less than 54 minutes remain so I will be brief, or as brief as I can be.  Work sucked, I am digging my current book but still anxiously awaiting my next shipment of books, am geeked for the NCAA tournament and the fact that Sidney Crosby is skating again and countin the days until the Pirates are mathematically eliminated from contention, which should occur some time shortly after their second or third game.  That is all.



Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Multiply 365 Day 74 - The NCAA bracket edition









Okay, with the NCAA tournament just about underway with tonight's play in games, I guess I should go ahead and waste a blog entry on how my bracket looks. How's that for a cheap blog entry?



Monday, March 14, 2011

Multiply 365 Day 73 - So long, farewell, auf wiedersehen, goodbye

Finally!!! Today was the last day for Ed at the store before heading back to Florida for another month. Not that I dislike Ed, but dang if he wasn't coming up with all kinds of stuff for me to do these last couple of weeks. The kicker was today at work, everything was running relatively smoothly, coolers were done, extra stuff was coming up from the basement, when all at once it just spiralled downhill. First both of my trucks showed up at exactly the same time, 7 Up and Sledd. I managed to get the 7 Up order unloaded, broke down the invoice, counted the cigarettes in from Sledd and just started checking in the grocery order and putting it away when first our salesperson from Sledd, Jay, showed up to write up returns and run through May's specials with me for any bookings I might like to get. That wasn't too big a problem because he would be doing returns first, which meant that he would be downstairs for a little while. But I no more than dodged that bullet then Ed came in and wanted Sammy and I with him.

First it was hang the new deli menus, and put out the paper copies, then it was take signs to our other store for a new Pepsi promotion we are doing. When I get to the other store I end up getting roped into doing work on their computer system, some of the cigarettes were not scanning into the system, so another time consuming fix for me. I manage to get that squared away (though there are still a couple of unresolved issues to be dealt with, it works for now) then back to my store where Jay is ready to go through the May specials, then Billy shows up to pick up a cigarette order he placed with us last week (150 cartons) that he hadn't gotten yet. Take care of that and then I manage to get to work on the grocery order finally. After finishing that up I get roped into then putting up the pepsi promotion signs in our store, followed by taking a locksmith upstairs in our building to fix a door that wasn't locked. The lock was apparently fine, but no one seemed to have a key for it, so we had to call and have a new lock installed, lest anyone decide that they could start using the upstairs as their own personal sleeping space. Not that it is great up there, no utilities or anything of the sort, but it isn't snowing up there either, which makes it warmer than any other place a homeless person may end up downtown. And given where the door for the third floor is located, it would be almost too easy for someone to go up there without being seen by anyone in our store or the porn shop above us.

And when I get in tomorrow morning I know that nothing will have been done because there wasn't anyone scheduled to relieve Sammy and myself, so the coolers will be a mess, especially now that we are selling 20 oz. Pepsi products at 2 bottles for $2.22 (they usually retail for $1.49 each).

About the only good thing to come out of today was that I got my Marlboro safari bag. Yay to free junk. At least this weekend I was able to finish another book, which has since been update elsewhere on the page so I will not spend time rehashing that which has been hashed already. And I did put in another order with Amazon for 3 more books, but I have been slacking on getting more gift cards recently, so my account is now somewhat depleted. Looks like I have four books to build up some more money before I am, officially broke or forced to go to a real, live bookstore for my reading purchases. Of course in 30 days or so, Ed comes back and the madness begins again.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Penguins @ Bruins 3/5/11

Penguins 3  Bruins 2  OT
Dustin Jeffrey - 2 G
Penguins last 4 games have either went to overtime or a shootout

Multiply 365 Day 72 - Fantasy hockey update

While thinking of what I might blog about today I decided to take a look at how my fantasy hockey team is doing. For those that haven't been with the blog all that long, I am in a 6 team fantasy hockey league, the top three teams all win money, though it should be noted that third place is just a return of the entry fee. That being said i have spent most of the year bouncing around in the top three, and with roughly 11-14 games left for most NHL teams I am in third place, still good enough to get my money back, but no more. Plus I am pushing the games played limits on a number of positions. They were set pretty high, so early in the year I was comfortable switching guys out on an almost nightly basis, but now that we are down to the wire I don't have the wiggle room in that regard that I once had. But since I haven't really mentioned the team in what seems like months, I guess tonight is as good a night as any to see just how I stack up against everyone else.


Games played - 1365 (1st)

Goals - 394 (1st)

Assists - 598 (3rd) trails lead by 21

Points - 992 (1st)

+/- - 45 (4th) trails lead by 99

Penalty minutes - 933 (3rd) trails lead by 290

Power Play goals - 122 (1st)

Power Play assists - 210 (3rd) trails lead by 69

Short handed goals - 5 (5th) trails lead by 8

Short handed assists - 3 (6th) trails lead by 12

Game winning goals - 74 (2nd) trails lead by 1

Shots on goal - 3730 (1st)

Faceoffs won - 3979 (3rd) trails lead by 415

Faceoffs lost - 3770 (3rd) trails lead by 342

Hits - 1458 (5th) trails lead by 863

Blocked shots - 1091 (5th) trails lead by 227


Games played - 154 (1st)

Games started - 153 (1st)

Wins - 76 (2nd) trails lead by 9

Losses - 55 (4th) trails lead by 10 (Editor note: While losses are on the overall stat sheet, they are not counted for fantasy purposes)

Goals against - 385 (5th) trails lead by 54

Saves - 4003 (3rd) trails lead by 229

Shutouts - 14 (1st, tie)

See, I can think up plenty of things to keep this 365 project up and running.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Multiply 365 Day 71 - Sugar high


Okay, I'll admit breakfast was pretty awesome. I did mess up on yesterday's description though, it was double chocolate banana pancakes, not chocolate chip pancakes that I had originally thought. That being said I did have the breakfast sundae today before work, and I am glad I did because I needed as much energy as I could muster for the day that was to come, that being doing the St Patrick's Day parade at work. Technically I usually just place an order on Saturday, but because of the circumstances, Sammy and I were both pulled in for extra duty, Sammy worked in the deli slicing lunch meats, while I worked stocking coolers with Curtis, because with the parade we expected to be busier than usual, and we were. The parade lasted almost three hours, and as things turned out, not much had been done with the coolers the night before, so I was already starting behind the 8 ball. And Curtis was little help in that regard, I think he may have taken two loads of soda upstairs the entire time I was there, leaving me to stock most of the coolers myself.

Clare was supposed to join Sammy and I for breakfast this morning, but she didn't show up. Now I get that we go to breakfast early, usually Sammy and I will meet up around 6:30 am, and that time of day isn't for everyone, so I never force anyone to go with us (as if I could) but when someone says they will go, and then shuts off their phone so you don't know if they are coming or not, well let's just say I was a little ticked off about that aspect of this morning's sojourn to breakfast. I am not sure when Sammy and I will be making our next venture to DeLuca's, but I know I am not inviting Clare along. That would fall under the rule of “Fool me once.....” Maybe I am being too picky, but if that is a character flaw, so be it. I can live with it.

I did manage to snag 6 hours at work, which is excellent., I can use the extra cash. I also found some more money today, $1.40 to be exact. I am not going to update the change meter, at least not yet. Still waiting to see if I can hold onto the bus pass for a couple more weeks. If so, this year will end up being the biggest year in change meter history and I will still have nine months to add to the total. I also found a handful of Coke caps after the parade ended, the streets were literally littered with trash. If I had made an honest effort I could have probably maxed out my Coke points for the week just walking around downtown, but I did want to have some time for myself today, and that doesn't include meandering around a bunch of inebriated peoples just for Coke points.

Well I am going to call it a night again. I started my next book last night and already I am halfway through it. It is the first of the Robert Parker series, after my last read I thought I would go with some lighter fare for a change. The next book will be somewhat long as well, not as long as the Clinton/Starr book, but long enough. It too is another political tome, so Parker is like a quick resurfacing for air before diving back into the deep end of the pool. I have two of my next books selected already, just have to finalize the purchase over at Amazon, which I will probably due some time this weekend, so I am starting to get back up to normal reading speed after a slow start to the year. But for now I am off of my sugar high and just sleepy, so time to turn in, and hopefully sleep a little late tomorrow morning. No where to go and no one to see, just the way I like my Sundays.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Multiply 365 Day 70 - The glorious monkey

As we close in on T minus 8 hours until the next trip to DeLuca's I have already made my breakfast selection, the Funky Money hotcake sundae.  It consists of chocolate chip and banana pancakes, french vanilla ice cream, whipped cream, cherry and chocolate syrup.  That, my friends, is what passes for an awesome breakfast in my book.  And it will be much needed, as I am working another 6 day week, tomorrow is the St Patrick's Day parade in downtown Pittsburgh, which is basically nothing more than another excuse to drink.  I don't have a problem with drinking, we all know I have done more than enough of it in my lifetime, but let's not make more of this "holiday" than what it really is, a reason for people to be publicly intoxicated and annoy the fuck out of the general populace knowing that there will be no repercussions forthcoming, because after all, it is St Patrick's Day.

Just par for the course around these parts.  But because the parade route goes in front of the store I am pulling an extra shift just to make sure that everything runs smoothly as far as keeping the coolers stocked and what not for potential customers, of which I expect a few.  And it a moment such as that, while I could just leave it to the people on the schedule I guess I feel a duty to make sure that things run smoothly.  After all, they are almost treating me as a manager at work at this point, even if I am not paid as such, that I should probably shoulder a tad bit more responsibility.

And pretty much as I expected, after my initial tongue lashing from Ed about the ordering everything between he and I has went along swimmingly.  He still gives me a few too many side projects that get in the way of me getting my stuff done, mostly because I am a tad bit more savvy on the computer than Ed, a tad bit being Ed doesn't use computers at all, whereas I have a slight working knowledge of them.  So I got stuck doing such things as recreating the deli menu, searching out vendors for products, writing memos, etc, even though such tasks to me are almost non work.  When I have $10,000 of merchandise on the floor waiting to be put away, or 200 cases of product in the basement that need unloaded, writing a memo isn't my biggest concern, but if Ed asks me to do it, then I have to put all of the bigger stuff aside.  All of that being said, Ed and I have gotten along quite well.  We have been goofing off with lottery tickets recently, Ed being a tad wealthier than I, will spend money on $20 scratch off tickets.  So the other day he bought a couple, they were both losers, and since I was doping work on the computer anyway, I hopped over to the lottery's website and checked to see how many big winning tickets were remaining in that game.  When it was first released in January the top prize was $1 million, of which there were 5 tickets, there were also a handful of $100,000 winners.  When I checked the website, 4 of the million dollar tickets remained.  When I told Ed that, he immediately bought two more, those too were both losers, so now I know he is in for $80.  I also know that the odds of a winning ticket are 1 in 3.11, so he is already getting the bad side of those numbers, so I go up and buy the next one, figuring a winner was due, even if it was simply $20, the cost of the ticket itself (which sadly is also figured into the winning odds).  As soon as Ed saw that I bought one, he wanted to go halfsies on it, he would give me $10 and we would split any winnings.  Except mine was a loser also, so then Amie goes and buys one, and Ed wants half of that one as well.  Amie hit for the minimal prize of $20, so they just threw that money back in.  All told, while I spent $20, I think Ed was in probably a couple hundred and I am not sure he ever hit for anything that day.  The next day I was working late and before I left I decided to buy another one.  Ed again offered to go halves, either we split the one I bought, or he bought one and we split both of them.  I tell him to get one and we will play two.  Mine loses, his hits for $20.  We decide to throw that back in, his next one hits for $50, so we have $25 a piece, a $5 gain if we quit, but we throw $40 back in and split the extra $10.  His loses, mine hits for $100, so now we have $55 each, a modest profit of $35 and I say I am done.  I made money I am happy, Ed keeps telling me he will buy more if I do, I am thinking I am content with my winnings, more for my Saturday breakfast fund.  And I have been trying to get Ed to go to breakfast with us Saturday morning, he seems interested, but then he is also not an early morning guy and we will be at DeLuca's at 7am, so I doubt he shows up.

And Ed is trying to get me some hockey tickets for next Sunday.  My cousin Scott is coming into town with his girlfriend and we are going to do the Pittsburgh thing Sunday, Primanti's and what not, and he is going to the game that day.  While I doubt any tickets I might get would be near them, it still would be cool to go to the same game.  I explained it to Ed and he placed some calls with vendors in hopes that he might find me a pair of tickets.  Given it is relatively late, less than two weeks before the game, he is making the effort anyway, for which I am greatly appreciative.

So things aren't that bad, save for I should probably be in bed right now, getting ready for a long day tomorrow.  A couple of things of note, new book to the right on Shelfari, it is the 700 page tome I was reading, I still have to add it to the neverending thread, and I did get credit for my most recent $5 gift card, so I have more than enough money saved up for my next book purchases from Amazon.  But for now I still have two more to read, so there is no rush in making my next purchase. 

Okay, I think that is more than enough for this, the 69th edition of Multiply 365.  Besides, the "Mirror, Mirror" South Park episode is on.



Thursday, March 10, 2011

Multiply 365 Day 69 - Time wasters

I am not going to bore you with a long ass blog this evening.  To be honest I am just too tired.  betweenm having about 200 cases of product dropped on us today, placing two orders and getting stuck with numerous side projects I am just content to jot one or two lines and call it a night.  Perhaps I will be more wordy tomorrow, when I am getting all geeked up for a Saturday trip to DeLuca's, where I have already made my breakfast selection (Funky Monkey hotcake sundae), but for jnmow I am going to call it a night and maybe crack open a new book.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Multiply 365 Day 68 - Product in the spotlight

I was watching TV the other night and a commercial came on and all of a sudden my mind started channeling Richard Jeni, during his Bill The Belching Gourmet bit, where he focuses on the product in the spotlight, Clamato Juice.  (To quote RJ, "Clam and tomato and you drink it, and note I say you fucking drink it, because I can't think of a more Addam's Family combination of juice.  Care for a glass of Clamato?  No thanks, I just had a glass of flounder apple you sick psychopath, but thanks for the invite".) 

As for what would make me think of such a thing, well that would be Cami Secret, the imitation Cami.  There are only two reasons why I could imagine anyone would buy this product.  It is either aa bib for a female, or else they are so poor that they are buying a cami on an installment plan and this is what you get with the first payment.





Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Multiply 365 Day 67 - Less is more

That is less blog is more time for me to do other things, which is fine because I have nothing new to report since yesterday and I have a couple of other projects that I need to work on tonight, so see you all in the funny pages and all that jazz.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Multiply 365 Day 66 - Not my type


Did you ever have one of those days where you are tired and it doesn't even feel like you did anything? That is pretty much the boat I am in right now. Not a good way to start the week.

It really didn't start all that bad either. I got to work and was busy stocking coolers in pretty short order. I had managed to bang out four of them without a hitch, then I had my 7 Up truck show up, again no problems. Got the order put away and the invoice broken down and all was still good. Then the Sledd truck showed up. They started unloading our grocery order for Monday, I put the cigarettes away after they were counted in, put away a couple of other items when I got to something new I had ordered. Any more I have been taking one of those items and immediately putting it in the system, so that there were fewer items that didn't ring up at the register when people went to check out. Now I can do this from one of the registers on the floor provided I am logged into in (or someone else with supervisor privileges) or I can go down to the office and use the main computer down there to do it. Since the office is the easier way to go (I can use a real keyboard and mouse as opposed to everything being touch screen) I decided to go ahead and load it into the system. I got down to the office and Ed said he wanted to speak to me. This was the conversation that I was dreading, one I knew was coming but wasn't looking forward to. The “you don't order enough back stock” bit that I expected for months now. Much like the swallows coming back to Capistrano, it is expected the minute Ed comes back. The fact he waited almost a week for it surprised me. Still I knew it would happen, I was already prepared to take my tongue lashing for 15 minutes or so and then be done with it and everything would be back to normal.

And that is exactly how it went down, but after that Ed wanted me to work on another project, which is another thing that happens a lot when Ed is around, he just starts piling up the projects. The fact I had an entire grocery order on the floor was lost on him, so I had to leave the entire truck to Sammy, while I was stuck in yet another meeting, as I no more than got my meeting done than Brian came strolling in, at which point Ed decided to call a manager meeting, which I guess I am now one of since I was not kicked out of the room. Rather I was a part of it, however indirectly. Ed had given me another project, I was to work on revising the deli menu, which I was trying to do when the topic of not having enough stuff in stock again came up. It wasn't directed to me this time, moreso to Brian, who tried defending me, which just prolonged an issue that for me had already been settled. And when Ed and Brian start going at it it can be quite loud, so I stepped in and took the bullet and said it has been discussed, I screwed up, my fault, let's move on. That mea culpa seemed to be enough to move the meeting forward, then it was an issue of being able to track our deli sales. Most of the items on the deli menu are already in the system, but we do also make some sandwiches that are pre-made and can be just bought right from the cooler rather than going to the deli counter and placing an order. Those items are not in the system for one main reason, there is no way to determine what will and will not be made. Those creations are really at the whims of whoever is working in the deli. So the issue became how do we accurately track those sales. I had four different managers talking about what could and couldn't be done, and while they were talking I was actually doing. Now we don't have any handbooks or anything in regards to how the system should work, so a lot of it has just been me training myself on the system and hoping I didn't fuck up too bad. Yet by the time all of the complaining about what could and couldn't be done had finished, so had I. I had created a new key in the register system that allowed for ringing up miscellaneous deli items just by pressing one key and having a box pop up that would allow the cashier to enter the price, and the item would then be credited to deli sales.

Shortly thereafter the meeting broke up, and Ed asked me to go if I could fix the menu prices again. He was under the impression that if I scanned in a copy of the menu (which I did a few blog entries ago) all I would have to do is take a copy of that scan down to Office Depot and have them edit it and create a new menu. First he asked if I could do it and I had to explain that a scan isn't like a file, it is more like a photo and some things, including editing photographs were just a wee bit beyond my technical skill set. He asked me to see if I had a copy of the menu if Office Depot could then scan it and do the editing. In what may be the good news, bad news portion of the day, it turns out Office Depot is just as technically inept as I am, so I could revel in the fact that they couldn't do anything I couldn't do, but that didn't solve the whole new menu dilemma. Instead it meant that I had to retype the entire menu with the new prices (a sign of how technically inept we are is that no one thought to get a hard copy of the menu file to begin with, which would have made changes 1000 times easier). I started to work on this project, when Ed decides he wants the name of some new suppliers for register tape and could I go online and find him some suppliers who might have what he is looking for. This meant first I had to get the right type of paper (3 1/8” x 230 ' thermal paper) and then make sure that the paper worked with our register printers. I started this project and got roped into dealing with Western Union, apparently the printer was voiding a large number of money orders so I was stuck on the phone with their tech support (who actually spoke English without the Indian accent) and was walked through the process of cleaning the printer in hopes that would solve the problem.

Then it was back to the office to work on the menu some more and I no more than got restarted when I was asked to make a sign for some fake marijuana product we are selling. More crap work. I finished that, went back to working on the menu and managed to get it all typed in but couldn't get it to fit on one page, so I still have some editing to do, but before I could do that I was then selected to do the deposit run. The whole day was just a clusterfuck.

The thing is, when it comes to work, I pretty much hate being on the computer, not that I hate computers per se, but because to me it just doesn't feel like work. If I am not doing real manual labor I feel like I am not doing anything at all. No matter how much I may actually be doing, top me it is all busy work, I would rather be stocking a cooler, or running trash, or just busting hump as opposed to sitting around typing most of the day away. Which is making this blog entry even more painful, I think I have typed enough for one day so excuse me while I return to my dinner, a simple pizza. And at this point I think I would rather eat it than type about it so toodles.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Multiply 365 Day 65 - Decisions, decisions


Alright, I have put off blogging long enough for one day. It has been a pretty nice weekend. Of course that means that it started with a trip to DeLuca's on Saturday morning. It was my turn to buy between Sammy and myself and because his birthday was Friday. We had a cake for him at work Friday, Dee took money from the store kitty to pay for it (at least I think she did) and I ran out and got it from a bakery downtown, so Saturday I wanted to make sure I was buying. As it turns out Clare actually decided to join us for a change. She had been talking a good game for a while but then something would come up and she wouldn't go, so it was nice to see that she made it this time and actually got to see what the DeLuca's buzz was all about..

I went and tried something new, and like everything else I have had there it too was awesome. They had a special with cinnamon french toast, eggs and a breakfast meat (I chose kielbasa) and the cinnamon french toast was just amazing. Sammy went with the Belgian waffle, he teased the notion of getting it as a sundae but backed out at the last second, and Clare got the sausage biscuits and gravy with eggs and hash browns. I could have eaten everyone's food it I had a bigger stomach but stuck with my own instead.

I did have to poke my head into work on Saturday, just to place an order and what should have taken maybe an hour or an hour and a half turned into a three hour project because nobody brought anything up from the stockroom after I had left Friday at 3pm. So before I could order anything I had to see what we actually had and wasn't on the floor to be sold. In a way it wasn't too bad, usually I use Saturday as a way to make up if I was late during the week. That wasn't a problem, in fact I ended up with a few extra hours this week, which is fine, I am always willing to make some extra money because I can think of a number of bills I can spend it on.

I bought a couple of lottery tickets before I left the store, no winners so I will be working for a couple more days before I retire. I headed off to my bus stop and when I got there I saw that I just missed a bus that would have taken me back to Oakland. As I looked down 5th Avenue to see if another bus was coming, given how frequently one can catch a bus from Oakland to downtown, I didn't see anything, and because it was drizzling rain I didn't want to stand there reading my book, so I walked around the corner to a little card shop that has a lottery machine in it and bought a couple more tickets. It is the same card shop where I pulled a $500 winner from a few months back, and I hit again, this time for $100. I think I am just going to start buying all of my tickets there, it seems to be the place that I have the most luck. It also basically paid for breakfast earlier and then some (I bought Clare's breakfast as well, though she said she is buying next time) and for a change I didn't spend the rest of Saturday finding ways to waste money, I holed up in my apartment after picking up a couple of things at the Italian store, some cracked black pepper turkey for sandwiches and some meatballs and pasta for something I want to make this coming week, and that was it.

Even today I pretty much stayed in. I ventured out early for some coffee and a danish from the corner store, but then it was back in my cubby hole, where I spent the day alternating between reading, watching hockey and playing on the computer. That was it. I big batch of non excitement as far as my weekend goes.

I did come to a decision though. I had put a question in the blog a few days ago about what I should do regarding the change meter and a bus pass that I had found on March 1st that was good for the entire month. I was hoping I might get a few ideas here or there, but none were forthcoming so I made an executive decision. If I manage to keep the pass for the entire month, which isn't a given because I have lost bus passes in the past, then I am taking credit for full value of the pass on the change meter total. Of course that means there probably will not be any change meter updates for a while, but it could mean the biggest year for the change meter yet, and we are only three months in.

Okay, enough rambling from me, I have things I still need to do tonight, starting with some laundry, so I am calling it quits for now.

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