Why Plinko hates you.

the life and times of one jaded motherfucker.

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Uncle Phil

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

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

:. Bands .:
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Jets to Brazil
Promise Ring

Mark Helprin
Kazuo Ishiguro
Wilkie Collins
William Faulkner
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The Lord of the Rings
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Stephen King

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Wednesday, April 28

Saw Hellboy tonight. It was good.

Earlier tonight, while I was on hold negotiating a payment plan for my student loans, I was thinking of just how great the movie UHF is. My god, it's full of stars!

Anyway. I've been working like crazy lately, mostly for the big meeting tomorrow. Of course, once the meeting's over, I have a ton more work to do, just for a slightly different purpose.

I hope it stays this temperature for a while, but I bet it doesn't turn out.

Monday, April 26
Since I spoke with you last I mostly slept or worked. I think that will be the case in general for a while. It's tiring, but deep down inside, I am really enjoying it. For the first time since I left the newspaper, feel as if I am really working on something, instead of just working.

I'd like to elaborate on my theories of work ethic, but I don't want you to fall asleep entirely on my account. You can that just fine on your own.

I forgot to mention that my cousin and his wife had a baby boy on Friday, so now I have two little ones in my family for whom to buy clothes from the company for which I work.

Wow, proper preposition placement sure sucks, doesn't it?

Sunday, April 25
This actually turned out to be a fairly productive weekend for me. On Saturday I made myself a nice, long list of things to do and I actually accomplished about half of them. Of course, i made the list longer than I realistically could have done, so I'm fine with only getting it half done.

I spent most of the weekend working, with piles of information surrounding me as I tried to figure out how much we're supposed to pay for things. The funny part is, I spend a long time trying to be scientific about it, and almost everything ends up at about the same price, anyway.

So, for the rest of the week, I'll be continuing this dance. Except whenever I go to see Hellboy with Mr. Jones.

There was a really interesting story on political polarization in the Washington Post today, but I'm tired and I don't feel like linking to it. You should have seen it, anyway, because you read it all the time, right?

I suddenly realize that not only am I too tired to link to the story, but I'm also too tired to say anything witty or controversial. Since I have one last load of laundry in the dryer I guess I'd better go get it out and folded before I fall asleep trying to entertain you all.

Saturday, April 24
Hi. I'm not in the mood to post right now, but I figured now would be a great time to play 'what's wrong with this sentence?'

From this story on NHL marketability found on EPSN today:

"Market size is believed to be a contributing factor in NHL sales. The NBA and the NFL have been able to overcome the obstacle -- evident from the fact that a jersey of a player from Cleveland (James) outsold the rest of the NBA by a wide margin, and that Brett Favre is on the NFL's list every year (Green Bay's population hovers at 1 million) -- but it's not clear that the same is true with the NHL."

Wednesday, April 21
I love it when Wisconsin things are in the news. Especially about Wisconsin things that are popular elsewhere.

Who was I just talking about broasted chicken with? I can't remember, but now I reall, really need to find someplace to get some. Maybe I'll check out that store locator.

Tuesday, April 20
After testing Gmail (see below), it doesn't put ads in the messages you send, it just shows them when you read mail, like the ads above the blog only on the right side. I can deal with that no problem. Now, go back to your daily cow-tipping.

Man, they promote you at work and suddenly they expect you to be all repsonsible for things and to know stuff . . .

If I didn't need the money so badly, I'd wonder if it was even worth it . . .

Ok, not really, but this week will make me wish this all could have taken place either a month from now or a month ago. At least I got my story done and sent in. I think I'll blow my reward on ale and whores.

So, every once in a while, I have a stroke of food-genius. Tonight was one of those nights.
I do not (for the most part) keep foods on hand that cook with minimal preparation. As a matter of fact, I have only a few meals I could make without defrosting something, so when I come home at night and everything is still in the freezer it becomes a little game to figure what I will eat.

Tonight, I was all ready to break into the macaroni and cheese, one of the few out-of-the-box foods I keep on hand when I had a moment of inspiration. Velveteen was telling me I should make french toast. But, I am out of syrup, so why would I do that?
But, as I rummaged in the refrigerator, I discovered something: leftover cream cheese frosting (that I had make late last week for the carrot cake muffins). Half an hour later, I was eating french toast sandwiches, with cream cheese frosting and strawberry preserves in between two warm pieces of french bread. If the Buger Bar ever becomes a reality, we are so serving that for breakfast.

I signed up to test GMail today. I thought to myself, do I need another e-mail account? But, I hate using my Yahoo! account because it's my whole name, which makes it a poor choice to give out to sign up for things, I think. And I have my wonderful TDS account that I believe I will soon cancel because the service has been spotty for quite a while over here. So, maybe it's time to port to a new service, a major e-mail provider where I finally got the 'plinko' account without any numbers at the end. So, I might start using that, we'll see. I know I'd love to have ads in all my messages …

Saturday, April 17
Today has been a very beautiful day, even more beautiful than yesterday, if only because today I didn't have to work. I took a very nice walk and played some video games.

It seems some people desperately needed to let out some work-related frustration, since our little happy hour yesterday turned into a drunk fest for a few folks. I had a really great time, though I kept my alcohol intake to a minimum. I hope the loud didn't bother others too much, I know how much loud crowds drive me insane.

Anyway, I'm trying to relax a little this weekend, because it's work city starting Monday. Good thing I'll start the week off with ham.

Thursday, April 15
It was one day later than expected, but today I received a new job offer and accepted it. Starting Monday I will no longer be anyone's bitch at work. Instead, I'll be begging and pleading with them to help me with all the strange new stuff I have to do.

Naturally, just before they back up the money truck to my house, it's the tightest financial month since I left Hoboville behind. There hasn't been much need for overtime lately, added onto the insane utility bills I've had lately due to not having a working furnace for the apartment and the big bucks I just sent off to Uncle Sam to cover the rest of my tax bill and the raise that comes with a new job can come none too soon.

Fortunately, I'll earn some fat freelance cash in exchange for the story I'm sending back to Hoboville. After that, I can finally start making headway on all that college debt. Hoo-ray!

Anyway, I'm sure precisely -2 people are excited by vague details of my financials, so let me tell you what else is interesting. Um, go Sens? It's really been all work and hockey playoffs lately. I will probably have mainly those two things in my head until at least mid-May, when work should be a little easier and will allow a little room for Prom.

Tuesday, April 13
Good evening again.

Tomorrow is a big day at work, it's the last day at work for the girl who left our department for Florida and is being replaced by our friend Velveteen. I'll also officially know that I am taking Velveteen's job. And, it just so happens to be my one-year anniversary at work.
So, I baked, as I am wont to do.

Actually, I had planned on making carrot cake muffins for a while, today just seemed like a good day, what with all the goings-on and all.

This reminds me, that Shaft and T-Plaid were saying on Sunday about how baking is more like a science and cooking is more like an art. If I can throw my two cents in, neither are either of those things, not even in a good metaphorical sense.
Both are - like sewing or woodworking or even journalism - crafts. That is to say they are a pursuit in which you create something while loosely following rules or guidelines; a skill, if you will. To be sure, cooking often allows a lot more room for experimentation than baking (and by baking of course we mean making pastry and confectionery), but only a select few truly elevate the medium to an art form.
To take it the craft analogy further, one usually learns to cook by following recipes, just like one learns to build a desk from a pattern. After a lot of learning, you don't need the instructions, but you always live by some guidelines in your work. Baking is the same as cooking, it's just that the rules are stricter, in the same way that writing advertising copy is more strict than writing a news story, but I would never classify either baking or advertising as sciences in the true sense. Science is a method of divining knowledge, while baking is how we turn flour, sugar, eggs and fruit into pies.

And if you're anything like me, you might think perhaps man has learned nearly as much as we could ever need to know, but there's always, always room for pie.

Monday, April 12
I know I'm a slacker, but there aren't many of you out there that could point fingers over who blogs too infrequently.

I have a few projects going right now, and while it seems to me I am not very busy with anything productive, I guess looking at it this way, maybe not.

The Prom soundtrack is in stall right now, as I have been listening to the songs I have over and over again, and still looking for some new ideas, mostly of oldies-type stuff to add. That, and I'm missing a few necessary items.

I am writing an article for the magazine this week, and I spent a lot of last week trying to get a hold of sources, which did not go well until today. It's due Saturday, so I'll be spending at least one night this week immersed in small-business computer security.

I'm trying to earn that vacated job in my department. Today was the interview and I think it went ok. It's not like I'll ever get past being so fidgety, anyway. I should know everything by the end of the day Wednesday.

My house needs cleaning. The taxes still are not filed, either. Who knows when I'll get on the former. I guess I'd better get the latter done tomorrow.

And in case you cared, yet live in a hole, the city restaurant smoking ban passed. Though it would nearly be worth having it not passed if only so that I didn't have to listen to the bellyyaching about it. Maybe the opposite is true for anyone that has to spend time with advocates of the ban, that had it failed they'd bitch incessantly about it.
But today, I don't care about that.

I got UT2K4 this weekend. It's much better than my other recent game purchases. I think I might go kill some things before bed, as a matter of fact!

Tuesday, April 6
I voted today.

Work is gossip central, it's almost hard to get real work done.

I wish I had some sort of political issue to discuss, but I blew the only one on my mind in Sunday's post.
The weather is beautiful, too bad it's not supposed to last.

The end.

Sunday, April 4
Wow, I leave this alone for a week and people went away disappointed just 167 times.

Things have been alternatingly crazy busy and sleepy, so no updates for you.

I have but a few things to say that I cannot (read: don't feel like) telling in full at the moment.

I am going to vote in favor of the Oshkosh restaurant smoking ban refernedum on Tuesday. I wasn't sure if I would bother, or maybe I would have voted the stalemate (voting 'yes' on both questions which actually call for two different -conflicting - things) because while I support the no-smoking in restaurants initiative, I would prefer the Common Council had done it and that the referendum is dumb. Personally, I think referendums for stupid piddly things like this are a waste of time, money and energy. But, I was wholeheartedly convinced by the unavoidable lawn signs claming that voting 'no' on #1 and 'yes' on #2 would 'Keep Jobs in Oshkosh.' I have found that stupid lie to be so maddening I would have changed my vote to support the ban even if I had previously opposed it. As if, absent the ability to smoke in non-tavern restaurants, entire industries would pick up and leave town. It would at least be somewhat coherent to suggest that voting 'no' would keep restaurants in Oshkosh. Coherent, but still stupid and almost surely wrong as well. Where are the restaurants going to go, Omro? Because so many people will drive out there just so they can smoke at dinner? Actually, I hope they're right. I hope the bill passes and it drives every last one of them out of business in a week, since this town is full of shitty restaurants anyway. Maybe some of those restaurants that survive in Neenah despite the oppressive ban on smoking in restaurants, could move in to take their places, since the city of Neenah, population 25,000, has six times the number of nice places to eat as Oshkosh, population 65,000.

OK, now I got all worked up. But at least I managed not to swear much.


Word on the street is as the rising tide raises all ships (or something like that), I will also be getting a promotion at work. I don't have things just handed to me though, I have to actually apply for the job first. Then they'll hand it to me, or something like that. I haven't been filled in completely on the details just yet. . . I'll let you know when I know.

During the break in posting, I have worked furiously on the Prom playlist with some friends. We're nearly complete on the heavy lifting part. The the fine tuning begins.