Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Blackhawks @ Penguins 01/21/2015

Chicago 3  Pittsburgh 2  SO

Zach Sill, Steve Downie - G each

Pittsburgh has now lost 4 straight games and 6 of their last 8

Penguins @ Flyers 01/20/2015

Philadelphia 3  PIttsburgh 2  SO

Chris Kunitz, Beau Bennett - G each

Pittsburgh finished 0 for 6 on the power play

NY Rangers @ Penguins 01/18/2015

NY Rangers 5  Pittsburgh 2

David Perron - G, A

With the loss Pittsburgh has now lost 11 times in 17 division games this season

Penguins @ NY Islanders 01/16/2015

NY Islanders 6  Pittsburgh 3

Sidney Crosby - 2 G, A

Pittsburgh allowed 4 goals in the third period

Sunday, January 25, 2015

B365V2.9 - And that's a rap for the weekend

to me
       I did make it to breakfast today and once again there is a certain amount of bustle here at Kelly O's, but I managed to secure a seat without waiting, which is always a plus.  Wish I could have said the same about catching the bus over here, but I was stupid enough not to check the bus schedules ahead of time so I ended up waiting 45 minutes or so just for a bus to arrive.

     I am really just happy to put the last week behind me, lots of frustration involved and very little on the positive front to show for it.  Hopefully the coming week will be better, but I have my doubts.  Just seems like the more I do get accomplished the further behind I find myself.

     Yesterday was a prime example.  I usually work on Saturdays though for the most part all I need to do is put in a couple of orders, with two of our grocery providers, Sledd and GFS.  While I am not required to, I also empty the money from and reload tickets into the lottery machines and I settle the credit cards from Friday, so we can get aren't waiting until Tuesday for all of the weekend sales to hit the bank account.  I usually stop on the way into work at the store formerly known as Gus Miller's just to see if Esam needs anything for Monday morning, though now that the Sledd website is up and running I could do his order from home if I so choose.   However that wasn't the case Saturday.

     Pardon the interruption here, but this BBQ pulled pork omelet is delicious.  It is making the wait for the bus worthwhile.  But enough about me clogging my arteries, I was yammering about inconsequential stuff here.

      Instead of a typical Saturday, I had to first deal with the ATM.  This is something Brian usually does, but on Friday he didn't leaving said project squarely on my shoulders.  And of course the ATM was completely out of $20 bills on Saturday morning, thankfully I had been setting money aside for this throughout the week, so I was able to pop another $6500 into it to keep it going for the next few days.

     Then I start looking around the basement and I see a bunch of stuff that should have been put away Friday is still laying around.  I actually noticed a problem on that front as early as Wednesday, when I had to do the 7 Up order because the rep arrived after Sammy had already left for the day.  In a way that was just as well, the rep had our new pricing with him and it isn't like I haven't done 7 Up orders in the past, I used to do it every week before the big promotion to the office.  The first thing I notice about the new pricing is that there are new items that I might be interested in, including .99 pre priced cans of Venom energy drink.  Given the number of coolers 7 Up has in our store and the fact some of them double up on product, I knew I had space for it and other .99 energy drinks do very well for us, so it would be worth a shot to try these.  As we continue our stroll through the basement I am ordering things because we are out of them only to later come across the same item because it wasn't put away, it was just thrown wherever.  I don't know how any bit or realistic ordering can be done when the same product is thrown in two or three different places.

     Okay I am back from a little status interruptus (thank you Wile E. Coyote), I finished breakfast which was delicious, then traipsed over to the book store where I picked up some much needed reading material and then made my way to Scratch N Dent to see what they had in the cheapie grocery department.  All in all a productive trip and now I am standing here waiting for a bus to come take me back from whence I came.   And I should get bonus points for using traipse, whence and a cartoon reference all in the same paragraph.  Just saying.....

     Back to our story, so I place the 7 Up order, when I see Sammy the next day I tell him there will be some new products coming in and we might need to make space for them.  So of course Saturday, two days after the actual delivery those products were still in the basement, not even put away, just laying down by the bottom of the drop shoot, as was a good chunk of the Friday Pepsi delivery.  Now not only am I doing my normal Saturday tasks but I am remerchandising two different coolers and putting away parts of two separate deliveries.

       If that were all it still would be considered an easy day by my standards, but I also had an order from Pricemaster that Ed had placed that needed unpacked, checked in and the invoice faxed to Ed in Florida so he could give me the retail prices he wanted on all the items.

      Okay, now I should be able to start my orders and begin the process of making my way home, right?  Not so fast kemosabe?   Speaking of which, where besides The Lone Ranger did the word kemosabe come from?  Honestly it sounds like an Indian who is undergoing cancer treatments.  Again, just saying........

      I start by putting together a GFS order, the trick with GFS is that they will not deliver an order unless it is at least $350.  That isn't unusual in retail, most vendors have set minimums before they will send a truck out, with Coke I have to order at least 10 cases, Sledd is a minimum of $1000 (since we get our cigarettes from them this is much easier than it sounds) but getting $350 from GFS is a bit of work, it usually involves me adding one or two items we do not necessarily need at that moment, but might need in another week or two.  So after going ordering the things I knew I needed I ended up padding the bill with a couple of extras, like to cases of Pizza Puffs as opposed to one and an extra tub of sour cream.  I think I got it to $356, just enough to get the truck to show up on Tuesday.

     Now I am all set to knock off mine and Esam's Sledd orders.  I start walking the floor with my little handheld unit so I can just scan the missing items in from the shelves, the easiest part of that order.  Other items I have to put in either by Sledd's designated item number or the UPC code.  As I am walking the floor I get to the section of the store where we keep the laundry detergents and cleaning supplies, and the section is mysteriously empty.  Well, not so mysterious for someone like me who has been doing this long enough to know that far more items are missing than we could have possibly sold in the last two days.  I don't need to run an items sold report on these things to see what time they left the store, I know in my bones that they were stolen.

     Now I have to go back to the office and fire up the camera system, I know I didn't order any of the missing items on Thursday, the last time I placed an order with Sledd, so my field of focus is sometime between 12pm Thursday and 5pm Saturday, and now it becomes something like the Clock Game on The Price is Right, I need to find the camera focused on that aisle (camera 4 for those playing the home game) and then start picking times to search, if I pick a time and the items are on the shelf then I need to go later, if I pick one and the items are gone I need to go earlier.  It wasn't long before I had the time pinned down to 10:20 pm on Thursday night and sure enough thee is a black man stooped down in the aisle shoving all kinds of stuff into his bag, even though we have told all of our employees that all bags and backpacks need to be checked in at the front counter.  Rules get followed so infrequently that I am just about ready to fire the entire crew and start from scratch.  Ed would never go for that, but my tolerance for this level of bullshit and incompetence is pretty much gone.  Trust me, nobody has a problem asking for favors, whether that be loans or requesting specific days off, but when it comes to doing what is asked, then certain employees just can't be bothered.

    Okay, another status interruptus, I caught my bus and was blogging on there until I reached my stop, then it was a quick run into CVS, followed by coming home, and after a minute or so I decided to take a nap.  Naps are fun.  I fell asleep listening to something on the computer, next thing I knew it was 5 pm.  I better get back to my story before something else gets in the way.

     So I found our resident thief on the cameras, little good that will do me.  It's not like I can call the police two days after the fact, hell we have had cops in the store while someone was stealing and they still didn't do anything.  So when I see stories like what took place in NYC, where the cops turned their backs on the mayor as he was speaking at a fallen officers funeral and afterward proceeded to arbitrarily decide to not do their jobs, we'll all I can say is that most experiences I have had with the police give me the impression that they are just as much worthless pieces of shit as the criminals they are supposed to be protecting us from.

     I go back to working on my order and as I am scanning things in and looking up other item numbers I see someone I had previously thrown out of the store.  He was another person that I caught stealing in the store, I told him to not ever come back yet here he was.  Thing is, during our last encounter he made the mistake of blurting out that he was at the Renewal center across the street.  Renewal is basically a criminal halfway house, it is a place where fuckups can go rather than jail and provided that they keep their nose clean they can go out and get a job and what not, they just have to check in by a certain time and there are rules for staying there.  If you fuck up, you go back to jail.  So here is this guy, buying cigarettes in our store, then taking them out of the pack and wrapping them in the plastic bag he was given so he could stuff them down his pants and smuggle them into Renewal.  One of their rules is that you can't have cigarettes on the premises.  So if you want to guess who contacted Renewal after he left the store, don't bother.  It was me.  If they throw him back in jail, well, I don't care.

     Finally I get our order done, I notice that Brian had put some hot dogs on the roller but it wasn't turning, so I took a look at it.  The problem with our hot dog roller, well with our employees not the roller, is that it should be cleaned every day, I am lucky if it gets done once a week.  So now I am going to see if I can get the roller turning again, I have to disconnect the cover which is screwed on it, then turn the roller on its side to get at the innards of the machine, but when I do I just have puddles of grease dripping out of it.  I cleaned it a little bit, I didn't want to tear it apart to the point where I couldn't get it back together, I am not great on mechanical things by my own admission and parts laying everywhere is just a jigsaw puzzle I would have no chance in solving.  Still, just by basically draining a portion of grease out of the machine I was able to get it functional, albeit briefly.  About a half hour later it was back to stopping again.  It is going to require more attention to detail than I allotted it on Saturday, but I was already 10 hours in and I still had Esam's order to do yet.

      I get back to my desk and start working on his order.  Because he is buying through us I have to not only place the order but price it out as well.  That would be easy if it were simply the prices in the book but some items we get bud owns on, like snuff and cigarettes, so I have to find what category each of those goes in and price it out accordingly.  And given his bill worked out to over $4400, there was a lot of pricing and figuring out involved.  His order alone was damn near an hour long process.

    Finally around 11pm I finish up, all of the orders are done and my day was done and all I wanted to do was come home and eat and just veg out for a while.  So of course my neighbors were partying and the only way I would have been able to sleep would have been to bite a poison apple.  On the plus side, I have no desire for a Prince Charming or otherwise to kiss me, so that would be a mighty long sleep, but apples are scarcer than blacks at a Klan rally in my apartment, so I just suffered in silence and no sleep.  Finally about 4am I was able to close my eyes for a bit, before getting up and starting my Sunday adventure and this blog entry.  And now with Sunday almost over, it is probably time for this entry to be over as well. Good night, hopefully it will be better than last night.

B365V2.8 - Where do the weeks go?

I can't believe I have gotten so wrapped up in my goings on that again I left a fantasy hockey update fall almost a full week behind.  Guess it is about time to remedy that.

Last week I posted another winning week, going 5-4-2 bringing the overall season record to 75-48-31 which is still good for 4th place.  With the All Star break this week, which pretty much marks the halfway point of the season, I seem to be in pretty good shape still for a playoff spot, 7th place (the first non playoff spots) is now 27 points behind me so in theory I could tank an entire week and still be in the top 6.  With the second and third place teams playing each other this week I should be able to gain ground on at least one team ahead of me, though with 2nd through 5th place separated by 8 points in the standings I have a feeling we will be jockeying each other for position for weeks to come yet.  Could be worse I guess, I could be in last.

Friday, January 23, 2015

B365V2.7 - I am turning into one of those "get off my lawn people"

      There was a time, albeit brief, in my storied employment history where I waited tables.  I had the job just a few months before being laid off because business was slow and I was one of the last hired, therefore I was one of the first to see their hours get cut and ultimately, eliminated.  The place I worked at, Valley Dairy, is one of those localized chain type diner/eatery places.  Nothing too fancy that's for sure.

     One of the worst parts about that job was waiting on older folks.  Not because they were bad people, in fact many of them were quite pleasant, but because they did not understand the economics of what it was I was doing.  I have railed on this topic in the blog before but for this entry's sake it bears repeating.  While servers in high end restaurants can no doubt make decent money, that really isn't the rule for lots of waiters and waitresses out there.  The government assumes that customers will tip, therefore they apply a different minimum wage to servers so when I was waiting tables my hourly rate was $2.05/hr.  Not only that, because it was assumed I would be making money hand over fist in the tip department, I was also expected to pay taxes on 7% of everything I sold.  In other words for every dollars' worth of food that a customer ate I was paying the government 7 cents, regardless if I got a tip or not.   Going back to older folks, they had no understanding of this (actually most people don't) and because the economic clock was set to such a fashion where they thought a dollar was a big tip, and maybe in 1940 it was, there were instances where I was almost paying them to eat.  Making $2.05 an hour and getting taxed on 7% usually meant the paycheck after two weeks would be $0, the only money that was made was on tips. 

      We now fast forward to the year 2015, and I am not sure I understand economics anymore.  Maybe I am now the guy who only drops a buck on the table, maybe the world has passed me by.  I mentioned the other day that I had wanted to go see Motion City Soundtrack, a band I really enjoy, this coming Saturday when they would be playing a club type venue here in Pittsburgh.  By the time I got paid at work and was ready to buy tickets though the show had sold out.  Because it was a club venue all of the tickets were general admission at $25 each.  I didn't consider the price too steep, I wanted to see the band after all and who knows when they will come through Pittsburgh again.  So I started thinking, yo now, maybe I can find a ticket broker online that has tickets to the show and if they aren't too outrageous, then maybe I pay a little more than the original asking price but I would still get to go.

      So I went on Stubhub and Seatgeek and Vividseats and what I saw pretty much appalled me.  The cheapest seats I saw online, before figuring in their processing fees were $97, or nearly 4x the original ticket price.  And it got worse, some were as high as $200. Mind you they were all general admission tickets.  And that is where I turned into the old guy telling the whippersnappers to get off my lawn.  Perhaps I have no understanding of the value of a dollar today, but the idea of paying over $100 for a fucking club show is ridiculous, there are national acts that play large venues that I wouldn't pay that kind of money for.  Mind you, even if I did I would have had to pay another $30 on top of that just to get into the over 21 section if I wanted a drink. 

     I guess instead of going to the show Saturday night, I will make my way off to have one of my weekend breakfasts.  And I will be sure to tip my waitress.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Wild @ Penguins 01/13/2015

Pittsburgh 7  Minnesota 2

David Perron - 2 G, A

With the win Marc-Andre Fleury has now beaten every other team in the NHL at least once in his career

Penguins @ Canadiens 01/10/2015

Pittsburgh 2  Montreal 1  OT

Evgeni Malkin - G, A

Malkin has 6 points (3 G, 3 A) in his last 4 games

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Bruins @ Penguins 01/07/2015

Boston 3  Pittsburgh 2  OT

Evgeni Malkin - G, A

Pittsburgh lost despite outshooting Boston 37-19

B365V2.6 - Just put the statue back already

     By now I would imagine everyone is aware that most of the penalties handed down by the NCAA to Penn State following the Jerry Sandusky scandal have been lifted with word that the wins that were part stricken from Joe Paterno's record as head coach of Penn State football will be reinstated, making Joepa once again the winningest coach in college football.

     Now I will admit I was not a fan of all of the punishment that was handed down to the Penn Sate football program, while I certainly thought the punishment for the program and the people involved should be swift and severe, I am not sure keeping the current team from playing in bowl games really accomplishes that.  The players weren't to blame for what took place so I don't get what punishing them actually accomplishes.

     That being said, there were plenty of Joe Paterno sycophants out that went to bat for poor beleaguered Joe, even when Joe was the one who granted Jerry Sandusky unfettered access to the Penn State football facilities, one of the many places where Sandusky could ply both of his trades, as a member of the Penn State football coaching staff and as a child raper.  Even after retiring from coaching Sandusky was still allowed to keep an office on campus, and use the trappings of Penn State football as a way to lure young boys closer to him.

     When confronted about one such allegation against Sandusky, Joe Paterno did what can best be described as the least he could possibly do in just passing the buck up the hierarchical change at Penn State, knowing full well that when it came to Penn State football and its goings on, the school answered to Joe Paterno and not the other way around.

     What saved Paterno from a potential indictment and possible criminal charges in the Sandusky scandal was simply the fact that he died before such things could happen.  There wasn't a mountain of evidence that absolved Joe of any wrongdoing, rather the Grim Reaper probably saved him from an avalanche of disgrace that would have come his way.  But death also saved Joe, because that meant his sycophants could then rush out and say he wasn't found guilty of anything, so why was he being punished?  They questioned the actions of the NCAA in how they meted out punishment, one state senator going so far as to sue the NCAA until an agreement was reached, where the wins would be restored to Paterno's record at a cost of $60 million dollars.

     At first upon hearing the news of this agreement I was appalled, but the more I thought about it, the less appalled I was.  Sure Paterno will once again be listed as the winningest coach in college football history, but with a giant asterisk, that being that any time his name is mentioned as the record holder the fact he abetted a child rapist will also be part of the story.  And it further goes to show how little some people care about the victims of Sandusky, that their coaches won loss record, which is really nothing more than cosmetic damage in the grand scheme of things because the players in those games know who won or lost them regardless if the coach gets credit or not, became more important than justice for the victims.

     So by all means Paterno fans, relish in your victory in getting the wins reinstated, go ahead and reerect the Joe Paterno statue outside the football stadium in Happy Valley while your at it, because every time Paterno's name is mentioned, it will just be a reminder to the rest of us of how sick you fucks really are.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

B365V2.5 - Conspired against me

     Late in December I got my mailings from the Rivers Casino.  Now honestly I hadn't been here since before Ed left, my last trip to the casino was the night I went over for the Pennsylvania Lottery shindig and Ed and I had dinner at the buffet afterward.  I went on to win some money that night, but I am not one who thinks that ay time I go to the casino I am going to earn all kinds of cash, if I go there I expect to lose more often than not, so I don't take any money that I can't afford to lose. 

    Usually when I go it is because they are giving away a certain amount in free slot play, or there is some other special event going on that has my attention.  In November and December they really didn't have anything so I just didn't go.  But late last month they sent me the promotion book for January and again they were giving away at least $50 in free slot play each week, $25 for the week automatically and an additional amount of at least $25 that they sent out in a pull tab promotion for Fridays. Also the buffet price had dropped $5, it is now only $14.99 plus I get a 5% discount with my membership card, so they did have some hooks to get me in the door so to speak. 

     I went there last Friday thinking I would just go blow off the free slot play they were giving me and if I did okay with it, probably buy my bus pass for the coming week.  I know, I have such small aspirations in life. So I get there, the weekly bonus is automatically loaded to my card, the pull tab promotion I have to go to a service desk where they will take care of it for me.  They asked for my card and my ID, I handed them both and they said they couldn't take my ID, it had expired.  See, since all I have is a state photo ID and not a drivers license I pretty much don't pay attention to the expiration date on it, turns out mine expired in November and that was reason enough to deny me the promotion, even though I still look like the guy on the ID and I did have the casino card as well, that was apparently not proof enough that I yam what I yam.

     Fine, no big thing, I went and spent the $25 promotion that was on my card, played a little with my own money and then came home.

    Meanwhile back at the ranch, I noticed last week that one of my favorite bands, Motion City Soundtrack, was coming to Pittsburgh.  For the life of me I do not know how poplar they are here, they receive pretty much no airplay on any of the local stations, so I figured that I would wait until payday and then go online, buy tickets and maybe, after securing my coolness, spend the evening at the casino having the buffet for dinner and spending the $25 of promotional money that was on my card.  I get off of work today, go looking in my wallet so I can hop the subway over to the casino and my casino membership card is gone.  I am 99% positive that I left it there last week, still in the machine I was playing.  So there goes the other free money I could have played with (I did file for a new state ID but I haven't gotten paperwork back on that yet) nor would I get my additional discount at the buffet. 

     I try to tell myself that the glass is still half full, I don't need to be wasting money anyway if I am wanting to go to a concert next Saturday night.  Speaking of which, I better get my ass home from work so I can hop online and buy my ticket.  Our paychecks from work, even though we get them early, are dated for Thursday so my bank does not make the money available until the date on the actual check, so I couldn't buy the ticket early.  Again, I would much rather have just paid cash in the first place, but the only way to order tickets that I saw was online, so it was going to be the debit card route for me.  Except when I went on the band's site I found out that the Pittsburgh date on the tour was sold out.  Mind you there are seats available in Columbus and Cleveland and Detroit, just not here.  Fuck me, bend me over and fuck me.

      I thin at this point in time I am just going to bury myself under blankets and not come out for a week.

B365V2.4 - Still more of the same

Yes, another fantasy hockey update and if it reads like a repeat, that is because much of what happened would qualify as such.  Again I was playing a team ahead of me in the standings this time the team in 2nd, and again I walked away winning the week, going 5-3-3 so for the year I am now 70-44-29.  I even managed to pull the second place team out of second, he is now in third place, but I still lost ground to the other two teams ahead of me. I even lost ground to the 5th place team, who is now only 3 points behind me.  So while I am winning, it would seem I am winning at a price.

 Not that I am disappointed, as long as I have weeks like this I like my odds at doing well going forward.   Just looking at the 3 teams ahead of me, I have played them 5 times thus far, going a combined 22-20-13 in those games, so barring a slew of injuries I will not be overmatched by anyone come post season time.  At this point in the year, just staying competitive is all I can ask for.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

B365V2.3 - Half full or half empty

Just thought I would do a quick fantasy update here, I am almost a week behind on such things and need not fall even further behind than I already am.  I have decided that since I have all but given up on trying to figure out the scoring in the radio league I will no longer do any posts on it here.  I don't know what position I am in in that league, nor do I care.  I am not checking the roster, I am not setting any lineups, in short, I just don't give a shit.  It could be perceived as me being all whiny, which is fine, I don't give a shit about perceptions either.  Instead I am just going to focus on the league that I run, and just do updates about it.

I can't recall if I ever described how that league is set up, so now would be as good a time as any.  The league consists of twelve teams and each week each team plays one other team in the league.  Teams are scored on 11 categories, 7 player categories (goals, assists, +/-, penalty minutes, power play points, short handed points and game winning goals) and 4 goaltender categories (wins, goals against average, save percentage and shutouts).  Each category is a "game" in the head to head matchup, a team that leads in category at the end of a week gets a win in the standings, so while you play one person each week, in that matchup you play 11 games.  Obviously then, the best record a person could get in any week would be 11-0-0.  Each win counts as 2 points in the standings, ties count as 1 point and in the case of a tie in points the first tiebreaker is wins.   At the end of the regular season the top 6 teams advance to the playoffs, the two best teams getting a bye in the first round.  Playoff winners are determined only by the result of that week's matchup, regular season results do not figure into playoff results.

All of that being said, I guess it is time to recap just where we are.  After my last update my team was sitting in third place overall, with a pending matchup against the first place team in the league.  This is one of those good news/bad news things.  On the good side of the equation, I won the week, going 5-3-3 against the first place team and lifting my record to 65-41-26.  The bad side of the equation would be that the 4th place team had a better week than I did, so while I knocked off someone above me in the standings, I actually fell from 3rd place to 4th in the process.  Up next I have another matchup with someone ahead of me in the standings, this time it is the second place team.  This is where I am glad I have a bit of a cushion between myself and 7th place (26 points to be precise), even if I have a bad week here I am still safely inside of the top 6 spots.  A good week and who knows, maybe I can track down one of the top 2 teams (and a first round playoff bye) yet.  There is still plenty of time, the season isn't even half over yet.

Okay, I have bored you long enough.  Time to finish up, you are probably tired of reading this and me, I am just tired.  A nap sounds good, especially if I want to have breakfast at Pamela's in the morning and the special this weekend is a roast beef omelet, so I think I do want to do that.  Night all.

B365V2.2 - Karaoke Friday - Good things about work

     So I am sitting at my desk today at work, okay I wasn't really sitting, I was in the process of cleaning off my desk which is a task all unto itself.  Piles of useless papers that needed to be gotten rid of, like old schedules, numbers I scratched down that at one point probably meant something but now are just scribbles from a bygone era, a diaspora of paper clips, rubber bands and post it notes.  One of the main reasons I was doing this cleaning, besides the fact my desk needed it, is that I found a pair of computer speakers in my apartment the other day and thought it might be cool to have them on my desk at work, that way when I am listening to my Pandora station and I have the office all to myself, I can jam, or jam as much as two little desktop speakers plugged into my audio port will allow.

     As I am readjusting everything on my desk and firing off Pandora through the new to my desk speakers, another one of those songs came on that, had it not been for the Music Genome Project, I never would have selected, even though I had heard it before and liked it.  I never knew who the artist was, or the name of the song.  Now I do, much to your chagrin, and to the chagrin of bar patrons the next time I get my hands on the jukebox. 

Say, say my playmate
Won't you lay hands on me?
Mirror, my malady
Transfer my tragedy
Got a curse, I cannot lift
Shines when the sunset shifts
When the moon is round and full
Gotta bust that box, gotta gut that fish
We could jet in a stolen car
But I bet we wouldn't get too far
Before the transformation takes
And blood lust tanks and crave gets slaked
My mind has changed
My body's frame but God I like it
My hearts aflame
My body's strained but God I like it
My mind has changed
My body's frame but God I like it
My hearts aflame
My body's strained but God I like it
Charge me your day rate
I'll turn you out in kind
When the moon is round and full
Gonna teach you tricks that'll blow your mongrel mind
Baby doll, I recognize
You're a hideous thing inside
If ever there were a lucky kind it's
You, you, you, you
I know it's strange another way
To get to know you
You'll never know unless we go
So let me show you
I know it's strange another way
To get to know you
We've got till noon here comes the moon
So let it show you, show you now
Dream me, oh, dreamer
Down to the floor
Open my hands and let them
Weave onto yours
Feel me, completer
Down to my core
Open my heart and let it
Bleed onto yours
Feeding on fever
Down on all fours
Show you what all
That howl is for
Hey, hey, my playmate
Let me lay waste to thee
Burned down their hanging trees
It's hot here, hot here, hot here, hot here
Got a curse we cannot lift
Shines when the sunshine shifts
There's a curse comes with a kiss
The bite that binds the gift that gives
Now that we got gone for good
Writhing under your riding hood
Tell your gra'ma and your mama too
It's true, true, true, true

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

B365V2.1 - Will Christmas ever come?

Hey kids, no I didn't forget about this place just taking some well earned me time from writing.  Also I spent some time jiggering around in ye olde cranium, trying to determine just how I wanted to approach blogging going forward. 

Having thought about the last 12 months and reflecting on the overall effort I gave the whole 365 thing, if I were grading it I would say maybe B- or C+.  Obviously I didn't hit the goal of 365 distinct entries, though putting out 340 over the last year isn't too shabby.  There were also times where I felt like I was going through the motions, not blogging because I wanted or needed too but simply because I had too in order to make up some arbitrary goal I put upon myself.  Problem is, while those type of deadlines do generate content, it is shallow content for the reader and pretty much unfulfilling content for the writer (me). 

That being said, towards the end of the project (and the fact I mentally call it a project is troublesome to me, it infers more work than enjoyment but that is another matter) I started finding my voice, even as I was blogging less frequently.  That voice I lost a couple of years ago started rearing its ugly head again, and that is a good thing for me, even if it means I come off on the page as harsher sometimes.  News flash bulletin, sometimes I can be harsher, it's just who I am.  Like I have said here many times before, I am far more sinner than saint.  There are times when things just piss me off and I swear more often than not.  Last I checked there was a content warning on the page, so I am cool with that. 

Going forward I did kind of like the Blogger 365 name, so for my regular entries I am keeping it, though in the abbreviated fashion of B365.  Of course V2 is simply the fact that this would be version two, slightly altered from version one in that I will still write regularly (I hope) but not necessarily daily.  Some days just aren't noteworthy.  Other days I have a dozen ideas in my head at the same time, and rather than try to parse them out into individual entries like I did in the last year, I will just slap them all on the page as they come to me.  Hopefully I can find a connecting theme from time to time, but I find I just write better when I have a jumbled mess on the page than when I sit down and try to determine how much I should put in one entry and how much I should ave for another one.  By the time I get to the next idea the creative thoughts behind how I wanted to phrase it are gone, I'd rather just rambled and see where the words take me if that is okay with everyone.  The last part of the title, the decimal point is just to signify which entry it is, so I managed to take that long overblown title I was throwing on my entries last year and knock it down to just a few characters for simplicities sake.

I suppose I should get about writing about the actual title today, since that was probably the hook that got you here in the first place.  Hopefully everyone had a good holiday season, as I said previously I worked on Christmas Day and New Years Day as well, so for me I just called them by what they were on the calendar, Thursday.  As of this typing I still haven't celebrated Christmas with my family yet, not sure when I will either.  Working 6 days a week doesn't leave lots of time for frivolity and festivities.  I made sure my large gift made it home at least, the new TV is hooked up and being used which is a good thing.  I think my family wanted to make sure they could watch the Steelers games on the big screen, of course now that football season is over for the Steelers, who knows what they will watch on it.  Knowing my mom it will be bad Hallmark channel movies and old episodes of Roseanne, but it's theirs, they can do with it what they want.  I still have a few gifts here for them, which I have no idea when I will see them to give them out so for the time being the rest of Christmas is on hiatus.  As is an sort of update on my Christmas list I left here on the blog.  If I haven't given them the rest of their gifts it only means that I haven't seen them to get anything they may have gotten me either, if anything at all.  With my mom being in her current state, I am not really expecting anything.  So my Christmas haul to this point consists of two cards, one $1 scratch off ticket and a $250 Christmas bonus from my boss.  Technically I did have money and lottery tickets on my list, so I guess we can scratch those off.

I did have one gift though that I had thought I had schemed perfectly to arrive at its destination before the holiday, but then the Post Office got in the way and now I am almost back to square one in sending it.  Allow me to explain.

Some of you may remember the gnome episode from earlier this year, where I absconded with one of the gnomes from one of our tellers at the bank (Gillian) with the intent of taking it for a weekend or so and snapping pictures of her gnome around Pittsburgh.  Of course that plan failed miserably as I broke the gnome the very first day I had it, and ended up trying to replace it, only to find that the new gnome was bigger than the old one by a lot.  I jokingly refer to him as Apache Chief gnome (Surperfriends shout out).  Anyway, Gilian has since left the bank, though not because of the gnome debacle, rather she was accepted into graduate school where she is studying to be a teacher and I couldn't be happier for her.  I like it when people make moves upward to pursue their dreams, even if it means I see them less often. 

Gillian and I still exchange messages on Facebook from time to time, and one day while checking out something she posted I had gotten an idea of something to get her as a Christmas present.  So I meandered my way over to Amazon and found what I thought would be a pretty cool gift, so I ordered it and got it gift wrapped and sent to the address I had for her.  Amazon assured me the gift would be delivered by Dec 23rd, which was pretty awesome, it would get there in time for Christmas.  Or so I thought.

I got an email from UPS saying the package was in transit, as well as a tracking number for it.  Something UPS will do on some of their orders is just get them to the nearest Post Office where they then let the USPS (United States Postal Service for those not in the know) finish the delivery.  So I check my UPS tracking number and it says the package has been delivered to the Post Office and they gave me a new tracking number for USPS.  So I am checking the new tracking number and it says that the package couldn't be delivered, which is when I realized that the address I had for Gillian was her old one and not her new one.  No problem I thought, if she left a forwarding address when she moved they will then just send it to her new address.  No harm, no foul. 

Imagine my surprise then the next time I checked the tracking info and found that her package was in Virginia, which last I checked, is nowhere near Pittsburgh.  So I send Gillain a message saying what happened, I get her new address and then set about contacting the Post Office.  I figure I got the tracking number and the new address, I will just use their contact link to correct the address the package needs to be sent to.  So after navigating a horribly designed drop down menu/contact section USPS has on their website I write a pretty lengthy note saying what happened and offering up the corrected address in hopes of facilitating  the delivery process.  The next time I check the tracking information once again the package is in Pittsburgh, but at the wrong Post Office.  Still hope springs eternal and I figure now that it is here they will make the necessary correction and all will be good.

But this is the Post Office we are speaking of, so I should have known better.  I finally got a reply to my message to them, saying that they could not change the address on the package, even though they knew it couldn't be delivered to the address that was currently on it.  In fact, they wouldn't do anything for me at all because my name wasn't on the package (because I sent it from Amazon), so they were going to take at least two weeks to "process" it before sending it back to Amazon (the senders address).  Now color me stupid, but if you have potentially two addresses to send a package and you are not going to send it to one of them, why the fuck does it take you two weeks minimum to send it to the other?  So now I get to sit here and wait while Amazon gets the package back, recredits my account so I can turn around and buy the same thing and send it out again, but to the corrected address.  At this rate I am hoping it gets there some time in July or something.

Okay, it is getting late, I still have some things to do here, like study for an upcoming Health Department exam on Thursday that I haven't even cracked a book for yet.  That's me, ever the procrastinator.  If not me then who, if not now then I will get to it later.

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Canadiens @ Penguins 01/03/2015

Montreal 4  Pittsburgh 1

David Perron - G

Perron scored in his first game with Pittsburgh after being acquired from Edmonton the day before

Lightning @ Penguins 01/02/2015

Pittsburgh 6  Tampa Bay 3

Sidney Crosby - 4 A

Tampa Bay has never won at Consol Energy Center

Our inspiration (the title for this blog)

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Where we've been