Why Plinko hates you.

the life and times of one jaded motherfucker.

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Uncle Phil

:.News of the World.:
Washington Post
NY Times
Howard Kurtz
Leonard Pitts
The Onion

:.On Wisconsin.:
Milwaukee J-S
Wheeler Report
Gannett Wisconsin

Penny Arcade


:.Current Book.:
Woman In the Dark - Dashiell Hammett

:.Last 6 Books.:
The Catcher In the Rye - JD Salinger
Grendel - John Gardner
Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha - Roddy Doyle
The Road - Cormac McCarthy
Theft - Peter Carey
Saturday - Ian McEwan

:. Bands .:
Dismemberment Plan
Jets to Brazil
Promise Ring

Mark Helprin
Kazuo Ishiguro
Wilkie Collins
William Faulkner
Philip K. Dick
Dashiell Hammett

The Lord of the Rings
J.R.R. Tolkien
Frank Herbert
Dan Simmons
The Dark Tower
Stephen King

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Monday, April 30
Ahhhh. . . hockey.

Went out to the rink Saturday to shoot some pucks at Barren but ended up having a friendly scrim with some guys on skates. . . Since I don't have any I had to run the whole time, now I'm sore.

mGIMP dinner was fun, though my steak was a bit grisly for my tastes, next time it's filet for me. Now it's the second day of my bizarre weekend, and I don't know what to do with it. I suppose I'll pay the rent and visit my parents. If I'm really ambitious I'll send a resume out to Battle Creek.

Got some odd news Friday that I don't know quite how to take. . . so pardon me if I'm weird. . . no smart-alecky comments either.

I found a song I really liked by a band I really didn't know, Sunday's Best, and I swear it's a Duran Duran cover, but as far as I can research it's not. I highly recommend anyone with mp3-itis go out and find "The hardest part" I got it easily off Napster a while back and saw it in their list on Audiogalaxy.

All the cool people are downloading it.

I noticed a while back that all my old posts are not linked from the blogger page, but they're all still here in my blog editor. I don't have any means that I can find to link to them from the page, so I guess for anyone interested, they're unavailable until I move this to a real site. . . hearty laughter ensues. . .

Saturday, April 28
So, I'm working and I decided to throw a bone out to anyone who might be sitting at home, depserately pressing the 'refresh' button on their browser, praying for an update from me.

Work blows.

Okay, I can be more articulate than that, believe it or not.

Yesterday was bad. In spent the whole day busting my tail off to try and fix our monthly special section that was nothing short of totally fucked up. The best part about it was that, whatever the problem was, it had the wonderful side effect of crashing my PC (which takes about fifteen minutes to boot up), so my evening last night was simply an exercise in futility. On top of that, I never did get it sent, instead I had to call somone in from ads to take care of the problem (those dirty ads — always ruining stuff).

Days like that remind me that I am basically doing a salaried job for a pittance of a wage and no benefits. It gets frustrating, but at least I'm not laid off, I guess. On a related note, I sent off my application to a newspaper in Kennewick, Washington. I'm considering sending one out to Battle Creek, Michigan as well. Thing is, as much as I 'hate' Oshburg, I have a lot of friends here, and most people know that I keep to myself, so losing them would be a big obstacle to overcome.

Went to the Dummo launch party for a while last night. I was kinda out of it, though, sorry if I creeped anyone out. Looking forward to TBCS 13, 69 people have already registered, so hurry up if you haven't! Tomorrow is the big happy mGIMP dinner, I can't wait to eat a big old juicy steak. . .

Wednesday, April 25
So, what's news? Got me.

I bought a new pair of shoes yesterday. Actually, Barren bought them for me, so's to get the fancy buy-one-get-the-second-pair-1/2-price deal at Rogan's. I was happy to get new shoes, but that means sore feet for a bit while I break them in.

I've been working on a Plinko logo, but my Photoshop 'skillz' are anything but 'L337', so it's been slow going. Actually, I have a decent prototype in jpeg format but for some odd reason I can't get it into .bmp, and I've tried all the things that work for me normally. I suck, I guess.

I can now retract my earlier complaints about Audiogalaxy. I had a grand old time downloading mp3s today on it, and I even let it run all day just to share, since I'm big on the returning to the community thing. My problem is that I have trouble finding new music. I went on a Napster rampage about three months ago, getting a ton of good emo stuff and some other bands people recommended to me, but since then it's been pretty dry. Thing is, I can't stand the radio and MTV, especially the crappy music they play. I liked how easy it was to get ideas from Napster because it was so easy to view the mp3s of people who had songs you were downloading. AG allows that, but its a hassle all around. Ah well, we can't have it all!

Sunday, April 22
This was a busy, busy weekend.

I did have a good time, though.

First, the big news: the State Tournament for forensics was Saturday. I thought we had a great chance to win it, but I was worried. I couldn't have predicted how well the team did. The kids set a ton of team records and more or less dominated the day, winning the tournament with a score of 316. The next two teams had 305 and 295. . . What really made me happy was how successful the individual kids were. They really put on a great performace, better than I dared to hope.

So: I'll say here congratulations to all of them: Lindsay, Kyle, Eric, Koby, Caroline, Ashley, Allegra, Courtney, Emily, Liz, Felice, Brian, Doug, Chad, Ben, Ken, Jessica, Meghan, Steph, Josh, Tamara, Sabrina, Anjali, Stu, Bacon, Cassie, Kari, Eric, and Marin. I love em all. This was a great season.

I want a special mention to my 'babies': Carrie, Faith, Mitch, and Ted. If there was one thing that really drove me, it was working with them. I love and respect every kid on the team, but somehow their success was more special to me. While they didn't take first in their category (instead losing to another outstanding group of our kids in the final), I couldn't be prouder of them. I think their piece as-performed was amazing, so much more so than you could resonably expect any high school kids to do, and they did it all more or less themselves. I took them under my wing, but they didn't need much help.

Of course, I can't forget to send love out to Mr. Lynch, the head coach, and Michelle, the other assistant. This was a wonderful season.

Sadly, I will not be helping to coach the team after this year. It makes me sad, yes, but I couldn't pick a better time to be hanging it up, having put together two outstanding years in a row like this. What had probably been the worst six months of my life were brightened considerably (and sometimes only) by this team and these kids. I'll miss them.

In other news. I got an e-mail Friday from a paper in Washington (State) about a job opening, I am going to apply, got nothing to lose. Keep your fingers crossed for me.

Lastly, and I know that you're just dying to know this (since everyone who reads this probably was there) team mGIMP eked out a second-place finish today at the clan warz tournament. We played well, expcept both our matches against DM. We sucked there, but they were obviously the better team. I was happy to take second, because I think we showed we were definitely better than all the other teams by a fair margin. Now that they're over, I can stop playing so much CS. I don't think that means the end of mGIMP at all, though, not after the plugs we got from the Appleton newspaper. Read the article , Stalker and Boogie and Atom are all quoted, jimmys even gets a mention. Coolness.

Thursday, April 19
I know that you're sitting in slack-jawed awe at getting a second post in a single day, but try to contain yourselves, okay?

The main reason I'm updating now is that I am killing time while I burn a cd for work, after that I think I'm outta here.

Today I received a nice present from a friend who was on vacation last week, an orange 'The New Yorker' (magazine) hat. It's a bucket hat, I never knew they were called that, but I guess it makes sense. She tells me its supposed to be inspirational for me, you know, to get me motivated to get a job at a more prestigious publication that my current job, only she used her favorite nickname, the "Winnebago Wonder." It's a great present, actually, except that I think I orange is a bad color for me. This, coming from a color-blind fashion gimp, of course. Nevertheless, the hat now graces my 21" Trintitron monitor at work. I'm staring at in right now, I feel so. . . snobbish now.

I got a haricut yesterday, which is always a big deal. I pay way too much for them, considering the relatively small return vs a cheap one. But I always feel good about them, so maybe I'm paying for the proverbial peace of mind.

The stats were reset at jimmysbox today. That brings and end to my reign as number one at about fifteen days. Dang.

Bought Tribes 2 yesterday. It was incredibly cheap at Target, I just couldn't resist. I also picked up 30 disc CD-R spindle for 12.99. . . I am not just a bargain shopper, but a geek bargain shopper.

Once again, the news is slim. This looks to be a busy, busy weekend, between work Friday, the forensics state tournament Saturday, (maybe) dinner Saturday night, then [mGIMP] practice late saturday night, then the 'clan warz' tournament Sunday, then the post-tournament [mGIMP] party after that, I will not be relaxing at all this weekend. I did take off of work Saturday, so I havge a three day weekend, but when was Monday ever really a weekend wether or not you worked?

I am getting sick of CS. I can't put my finger on exactly what it is, except maybe the flood of morons that play it, and that you just can't play it alone or even really with just your friends. I was hoping that Tribes 2 would make me forget CS for a while, but so far it hasn't turned my crank. I can't put my finger on that one yet, either, T2 definitely deserves more of a chance, though. T2 is just really, well, chunky, and considering the coin I put into this gaming machine of mine, that just shouldn't be. That, and T2 is one of those games that you can't just jump into and frag. It's been out like a month and there are plenty of people who just blow you up before you can even see them. That and you need to bind about fifty keys and micro-manage a crapload of stuff to play. Makes me appreciate using just 15 or 20 keys to play a half-life mod or UT, even, QIII (blasphemy!).

I got the itch to get some new music today, so I fired up the Audiogalaxy, but it seems to be unwilling to work properly. People get stuff from me, but the stupid web site doesn't want to find any music for me. makes me want to put this T-shirt on.

There, Atom can thank me later. But, seriously, for anyone out there: (I know there's at least four of you) I'm taking suggestions on music sharing software. Let me know.

Monday, April 16
Okay, so I've been lazy. I've had my mind elsewhere than my blogger site. But, absence makes the news get longer, so maybe I can make a repsectable post today.

Firstly, I want to draw people's attention to a cool commercial site that some friends of mine started, Dummo. They seel cool T-shirts, at least two of which I want really badly. They promise to have ore shirts available soon, and the site isn't fully functional yet, just a warning.

Apparently, 'Blogging' is a trendy topic in the media. The two publications I read most consitently, the Oshkosh Northwestern (my employer) and Brill's Content, the media watchdog magazine, have run features on the subject of blogging in general. Reading it made me feel rather inadequate about my blog. I don't consider myself a 'human portal' as the witer from Brill's phrased it, but I saw some of the cool stuff people do with their blogs and it made me kinda jealous.

Tonight is the last match for team [mGIMP]. I am playing, and I'm hyped. Of course, I'm looking forward to the next TBCS far more, but that's about a month away yet. We managed to score in Rogue Spear, despite posting a less than spectacular time.

In personal news, I am preparing an application for the Journal Times in Racine, WI for a new job. I doubt if it will pan out, but maybe. I got my taxes done today, finally.
Saturday is the big old State Tournament for my beloved forensics team, I can't wait.

Wednesday, April 11
I like food, food tastes good
I like food, food tastes good
juicy burgers, greasy fries
turkey legs and raw fish eyes
teenage girls with ketchup too
get out of my way or I'll eat you, too
I like food, food tastes good
I like food, food tastes good
I'm going to turn dining
back into eating

-Descendents, I Like Food

There, theres your punk culture for today, a little song that's in my head becasue I'm hungry, damnit! I'm too busy working and playing CS to eat.

Actually, people have been commenting that I look like I've lost weight, which I think I have, ever since my trip to the UK. Now, for some of you that might not be such a bad thing; but when you're my size its a big bad thing to lose weight because you get enough grief already about being underweight. I'm gonna try to eat more, we'll see what happens.

My checks arrived yesterday.

Still no good news on the day job front. I think the real culprit is an overabundance of laziness on my part, but the final results have yet to be tabulated.

Monday, April 9
I am a lazy, lazy procrastinating son-of-a— . . .

Well, I should be nice to myself. I have a ton of stuff to do today, but it's 1:40 and I still haven't done any of it because I was ticked off and had to get back 2 awards in jimmysbox. Meanwhile, today I am supposed to call about getting my car fixed, get my mother the $857 I owe her and work on finding daytime employment. Then I should grocery shop and I play Rouge Spear for the 'clan warz' tonight. Quite a list for someone unshowered and in his pajamas at this time of the afternoon.

Forensics State Festival was Friday and I couldn't go because of work, and I still do not know how the team did. Such is Spring Break (for the public shools kids), I have to wait until next Monday.

I feel distinctly rant-less right now, so I guess this is over.

Don't burn the house down.

Friday, April 6
Whew! Tonight was a tough one at work. Most of the sports boys were off at the Brewer's home opener today so I actually had to work at work, something I'm not exactly used to. It almost felt nice.

It's not work that's got me ranting today, no, sir! You know, I like to think of my nick as rather original. I mean we all know about the 'the Price is Right' thing (which didn't occur to me until long after I had chosen it) but I mean, really, who wants to be known as Plinko? That of course, went a long way toward the name being chosen. What got me was that the other day, while registering my legitimately-purchased copy of Black & White, I discovered that someone had already registered Plinko, a scant week after the game was released! I mean, what are the odds, how many Plinkos are out there? I know I never, ever, see anyone use that as a nick in any game or any forum. Now, a search on ICQ turned up at least 40 users who registered their nickname as Plinko, but how many of them bought Black & White, and registered it right away?? I ended up choosing one of my favorite alter-alter egos, Celeborn, which, while far cooler in the traditional sense than the more eclectic Plinko, apparently has no following amongst the owners of Lionhead Studio's hit. You'd think the Tolkien-derived Celeborn would have greater appeal to a crowd purchasing a computer game like B&W than the game-show-trivia inspired Plinko. But I guess not.

/end rant.

Wednesday, April 4
Yesterday was non-partisan election day, but the only true winners were my microGIMP teammates who whupped up on team_64 11-5 in CS last night.

I must say I think everyone should have a blogger-type page to call their own (not a plug, mind you). I like reading those of my friends. I also like to post my dumbass news and thoughts for them to peruse. Work was, well, work, and I have to go back, despite all my prayers.

My best lead for new work is that direct-marketing powerhouse, 4imprint. Nothing witty to say about that. As a matter of fact, I am feeling pretty not-witty today. Most people probably won't notice the difference, anyway.

Monday, April 2
Two words:

1. Black

2. White.

If you don't know what I'm talking about, then you wouldn't want to know, anyway.

In other news, my financial situation is distinctly worse than previously reported (consider an upgrade from bad to dire) which will make my job search all the more urgent. I will probably now need a full-time day job while Gannett Co. sits on their hands waiting out the tough economic times until they can pay me enough to feed myself.

The real kick in the pants today was finding out that my bank (credit union) lost my new checks order, so I have even less ability to pay my bills because I have been holding out waiting for them. My teller today (I still demand to bank face-to-face) — upon my questioning the non-arrival of said checks — told me I should wait a little longer yet. Then at the prompting of her co-worker, called and checkd for me. Sure enough, they hadn't received it, this, people, is why you never accept the pooh-poohing of your concerns by service employees.

Result: tomorrow I get to bring my bills to my parents' house so mom can write me checks and then buy a money order to pay her back.

But, this wasn't the best part of my day, no, I found out that I need $1500 worth of repairs on my 14-year-old car, car, which means that I will soon be in the market for another.

And biking.