Friday, December 23, 2011

Karma

Two days till Christmas and I am sitting at the dining room table wondering how I am going to pull it off. I even stared out the window for a bit to see if I could see the brunette in the red bathing suit jumping into my imaginary pool. Nope just dreary wet weather - green this year for sure.

During my pondering I noticed something interesting. We have two cats. We got them to keep our dog company when he was in his twilight years. Also, if we went out and forgot to feed him he could eat one of them. The interesting bit though is that when they sleep, one curls counter clockwise and the other if he wasn't too pudgy and could actually curl, curls clockwise. Like a furry Ying Yang, and not where you were going with it.

This brings me to the karma bit. I believe in karma but does it always have to come around at Christmas? Like really? In the last couple months the Kingdom of Alt37 seemed to be turning it around. The bank called a couple of months ago to tell me that one of our mortgages was paid off, a letter from Dell notifying us that our computer was paid off and on the horizon a payday for the martial arts program I am writing for the parks and recreation department of an Ontario city.

Things are looking up. Then in the last few weeks - the Queen of our kingdom's car needed repairs, our royal ice box needed repair and the people that we agreed were not getting presents this year suddenly made it into the good books. On top of that, the bank calls back and informs me that the mortgage that we paid off was the mortgage that had the property taxes built in.

So I had to contact the city to get set up for automatic withdrawal (I figured I would just continue to put the "mortgage" money in the account). Makes sense right? Wouldn't miss it. Well, the confirmation letter back from the city had a monthy payment greater than the mortgage payment that I just finished paying off. How does that work?

Paid "X" on the mortgage which was to cover Principle, Interest and City Taxes. We'll say $180.

Now on automatic withdrawal property taxes are "Y". We'll say $242.

Scratches Head

When the accounting is done, this month still comes out in the red, /facepalm. I guess I will have to raid the peasants piggy banks. I am allowed, I am the King.

One day - Karma will swing my way.

Merry "Insert politically correct statement for whichever festive occasion you participate in"

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Sunday Morning

It has been a blur since my last posting. I am trying to decide if the old saying, "Times goes fast when your having fun." applies in this situation. There has already been Christmas lights up for the last couple weeks. Why are people trying to rush these things?

For those who know me I changed my status last night to read - "Bake at 400C for 25 minutes or until desired colour is achieved". Well that was off - it should be 400F. If the temperature was 400C then the desired colour I guess would be "black". I just thought it interesting. When one eats pork one hopes that the internal temperature of the meat reaches the "salmonella is dead" temperature rather than a pleasing exterior colour.

For those that read this blog for humorous anecdotes, I have none today. I think it is more due to my "oldtimers", rather than there being nothing funny happening in my life. I guess I just need to carry a pen and paper around to document them. Those of you that follow this blog for a glimmer into my exploits in WOW, your in luck. This posting is going to be for you.

Patch 4.3

IT SUCKS

I am not going to delve into the specifics of different class mechanics, I am going to stick with the big picture stuff.
  • Void Bank
  • Transmorgification
  • Darkmoon Faire
  • Raid Finder
I am going to lead off with the good, then go to the bad, then the ugly.

Transmorgification

Haven't tried it. So no comment.

Darkmoon Faire

The games were fun however; the one game where you have to shoot the targets. Why do the Tauren players have to stand pretty much on the counter. Be courteous. You can barely see what is going on. Blizzard should have made that booth bigger and had an invisible wall so you can't get too close. Other than that - this is a good.

Void Bank

This is bad - Open it up and it costs 100G to open the account, then it is 25G per item I think to deposit (Wasn't able to actually deposit anything so not sure if there was a discount for multiple deposits). I guess Blizzard wants to match the service charges of the Bank of America, or the Royal Bank of Canada depending on your locale of residency. How about no service charges and they call it the "Void Credit Union".

Oh, so about the depositing. I went to my player's bank when I logged in all a giddy with anticipation of clearing out a pile of stuff that I wanted to keep but was taking up a ton of space. I brought it all to the Void Bank and paid my 100G. Only to be told that I can't deposit anything that is "Unique". Well that is about everything in my bank. Six years of celebratory steins, and other assorted world event trash. I could deposit nothing. So other than tier gear which I don't collect what use it this?

Raid Finder

This gets the designation of ugly. Again I was all excited to log in and queue up for a Lich King. I never did get my Kingslayer. Completed up to the second last boss several times then the raid fell apart. I figured awesome, finally going to get it. What do I see? Only 2 raids available and you need something like an ilvl 370 to get in. Blizzard, if I had an ilvl of 370 don't you think I would be raiding that content with my guild. UGH!

I thought that all the raids would be represented. Eg. If I was a level 70 or higher with a minimum ilvl x, I would be able to queue for Karazhan, or Black Temple etc.

Two raids, what a waste of energy on their part. The only way of pulling this out of ugly is some plastic surgery. I hope in the next few months they open it to all raids.

That's it, going to the faire.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Time

It's November - Christmas is about 53 days away and the local department stores are setting up their displays. This year seems to be just flying by. My daughter turned 13 and showed me a photo of her kissing her "boyfriend" at the halloween dance a couple days ago. I almost had a stroke. Everything is moving too fast.

Even in WOW, Blizzard announces a new expansion and all you see everywhere is Panderia this and Panderia that. It's like they put up the Christmas decorations and we still have to get through Thanksgiving (US) still and Patch 4.3. I know there had to be the hype element, but seriously - do you think it will be released in July 2012 like the polls at WOW Insider are suggesting. I guess Blizzard needs to make their money before the end of the world - JK.

I am also trying to come to grips with my advanced stages of "oldtimers". Where I think to myself, "What just happened? This would be a great blog article.", only to forget it in a blink of an eye. I guess I will have to start taking some notes on my travels.

So I am going to try and list the things that have happened in the last few weeks that I thought were somewhat interesting to me (in no particular order - Oldtimers).

Halloween

From my Facebook status, "Ok - Halloween night - So what does it mean when the lights get turned out? Oh yeah - the candy is gone. Some kids need to learn some Halloween etiquette."

I turned off the lights and I was still getting the odd group coming to the door for candy. Really? Use your Tim Horton job money and buy your own candy. One "kid" that did come to the door was standing 6'4". At least he came at a reasonable hour and had a full understanding of Halloween etiquette. The knock, the "trick or treat", the passing of candy, the "thank you". Good job - now go out and get one.

Another woman brought her 2 month old to the door. Again, really? Pretty sad.

Martial Arts

A couple of weeks ago I got a pretty good "George Horse" to my left knee. I say "George" because it was way more severe than a standard "Charlie Horse". Almost a full 3 weeks of hobbling around, apparently with the "oldtimers" there is a slowing of the physical healing as well.

My program that I am developing for a city in Ontario is going well. A lot of the drafts are done and I am working on the instructors guide. Working on getting some photos done because there is only so much you can describe without a picture being required for that extra thousand words.

Looking forward to the submission and the people who hired the expert, telling the expert how he should be doing it. Should be interesting.

WOW Stuff

One word, "overwhelmed". Patch 4.3 is coming out and I have barely read any of the patch notes. I am not even sure what is happening in it. Then the expansion announcement comes and really causes a cataclysmic upheaval to my WOW world. The talent changes alone were giving me a headache. Remember, I am the guy with the 37 alts. I rely on cookie cutter. I guess time will tell.

With the "Mists of Panderia" coming, and the new race and class, have you parked any names for your new monk toon? Let me know. I wanted to use "TheyCallMeBruce", but lo an behold I was 3 characters short, so I parked, "CallMeBruce". The original movie - "They Call Me Bruce" was screened in 1982, I think I enjoyed it, what 29 years ago.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Tuesday Musings

Okay - I woke up this morning with a cold. Runny head, feverish, ringing in my ears,and achy. So I called in sick to work. I realized that I was on the road today and had to get an email off to my assistant so he would know what needed to get done at our customer sites. I logged into my computer only to find a pile of work emails that I had to get done. So, I ended up working from home. I got everything done (or at least stable until I get in tomorrow). Got a new customer in the process. So things are good.

I put in 8 hours already. Kind of glad I was sick, it allowed me to get my office work done and my assistant will still get our road work finished. Needless to say that I would have been a bit stressed had all these emails come into my phone and I wasn't able to do anything about them.

But enough about work. Before I go lay down, all the symptoms are starting to stir again, I wanted to get a quick blog post up. Just to mention a couple of things that I have been involved with in the last week.

Sake Ceremony

Last week we were finally able to acknowledge the granting of Shodan to our Jiu-Jitsu club's newest black belt. His certificate finally arrived in the mail from our governing body. We had our traditional (at least in our club) Sake ceremony. All of the black belts have a drink of Sake in honor of the student - then we fill his bucket (er glass) so he can drink in honor of us. John managed to choke down the 2.5L of Sake we poured into his glass. After this we went to the local watering hole and honored him with some Tequillia and Goldslager. I am sure his head was a little sore in the morning.

Amazon.ca

A while back I ordered a book from Amazon.ca. I picked up a used one of the title I wanted because a new one was going for about $60. The one I ordered was $0.67 + S&H - or about $7.00. It took a while to get here. When the envelop arrived I could see why, it was shipped to me from England. What made me chuckle was when I opened it, I found it to be in really good shape except for the stamp on the inside cover stating it was the property of the "Liverpool Library".

That must be why it took so long for me to get it. Someone had to go to the library and steal it for me.

Playing with it

Well I am sick today as I mentioned earlier. While sitting here working on my office stuff I started to get hungry. I decided to make some Cream of Wheat (love the stuff especially with a splash of Bailies). I followed the directions, added milk to the pot, brought it to a rolling boil, stuck my in cream of wheat, and began to stir it around. For the whole 3 minutes I stirred. Nothing - I couldn't get it to stiffen up. Not satisfied, I had to have a bowl of limp cream of wheat.

I think I will take a nap, feel like I am going to fall over.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Arrrr! Crap

I am one step closer to having to walk the plank. I was so busy yesterday that I forgot to talk like a pirate. It was Official Talk Like a Pirate Day, and I totally forgot. Not good, I think may have to eat an orange (scurvy protection), and pirate rant to myself to try and make up for it. This is not going to keep me in good standing with the Pirates Licensing Board (PLB).

The reason I was so busy yesterday was that I had an interview with some city representatives (from a city in Ontario) to write a martial arts program for their Parks & Recreation Department. The interview went so well I have a bad feeling they will want me to teach the program as well. It will be a helluva commute but if the money is right it should be fun.

On the martial arts training note. I have noticed in the last couple of weeks that my son has the grace and coordination of an albatross trying to perform ballet. It got me wondering if the mailman had anything to do with his conception. But alas, last night I was working on some of my kicks, ah yeah, no mistaking where he got his poise and grace. I really need to work on that. I guess that is why Jiu-Jitsu appealled to me. Kicks below the waist.

WOW News

Play the Paladin! They know who they are. The rest of you - nevermind.

Going to spruce up my coffee and go outside and enjoy the nice fall day. Yeah, I said it - FALL.

Have a good one.


Sunday, August 21, 2011

Going Home

Well our daughter is home. She had been away at a 2 week General Training Camp at CFB Trenton as part of her Royal Canadian Air Cadet training. Friday evening the family converged on Trenton to watch her graduation parade. I drove up with the boy and my wife drove down from her parents (she was there visiting). We positioned ourselves around the parade square to watch the festivities. We saw many cadets "gingerly" walking around - obviously due to an abundance of blisters from two weeks of "drill" training.

During the march past we caught a glimpse of our daughter (there was over 500 cadets graduating), she looked great (in comparison to some of the other cadets from her squadron). She was tanned and looking fit but obviously a little tired.

The graduation went well, however; darkness soon fell and it was hard to see the ceremonial honor guard demonstration. But the muzzle flashes were awesome. They did their routine to music provided by the RCAC summer band. Excellent job by both groups. The graduation ended about 9:30pm, I said goodbye to my wife and boy. They were driving back home (about 3.5 hours - ETA about 1:00am) because my wife had to work in the morning.

Off to my room, my x-wife's husband was an officer in charge of the senior camps, he got me a room at the on base accomodations called the Yukon Lodge. Yes it's bizarre, but if even a small percentage of family break ups ended like mine did, there wouldn't be as much issue with society these days especially around child issues.

Any way, the plan was to pick up my daughter in the morning. give her the evening to say, "good bye" to new friends, party it up. Within an hour or so of getting back to my room I got a call from my daughter, she was crying, "come get me, I don't want to stay." My first thought was "post traumatic stress syndrome" - PSD. She was only away for 2 weeks! I got dressed and headed down to the camp area. When she saw me she actually ran over and initiated a hug. I am usually the one doing that, especially when I drop her off at school. She explains, "all my friends are leaving tonight, I am the only person that is going to be in my barracks." So off we go, to fill out some papers, have her confiscated items returned (aerosol bug repellant - all of the kids had one thing or another confiscated).

She is free, we walk back to my car and head the 2Km back to my room. She was in heaven, a car ride, it was the 2Km ride she would march 6 times a day back and forth to the mess hall. In the room she grabbed my iphone and updated her Facebook page with 8 pages of new friends (that was 8 school notebook pages of new friends). She had a hot shower without wearing flip flops for fear of athletes foot and she slept in a bed and not a bunk. Maybe if all of the kids that are out there, seamingly content in their entitlement (my daughter has no illusion that she is entitled to anything but it was nice to see the joy she received from just some of the basic services we take for granted) spent 2 weeks at Cadet Camp, the world would be a better place.

OMG - next morning - up at 6:40am, I told her we could sleep in. Nope - she didn't want to miss breakfast. We marched our 80 yards to the mess hall. Ate and then bussed our trays. I was going to put it in the rack about half way up. "No", she said. "Start at the bottom." As we left she saw the halo of light eminating from the mess hall restrooms. I read the sign, "No cadets on summer training permitted to enter." She states, "I am using this restroom, I am no longer on summer training." Ah, my girl - marking her territory.

The trip home - used my iphone to simultaneously have 15 text message comversations, sleeping most of the time while drooling on my phone (she had it on her shoulder since I forgot my headphones) while listening to "HER" music on either my iPhone or the car radio.

Glad she is back. When does school start again?

As an aside, she was very eager to show me her camp report card and to show me the certificate she received stating that her and the rest of her barracks won the - "Most Orderly Barracks" award.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Arrr! I am now a pirate.

For those of you following my tweets and Facebook status updates the last couple weeks, you may have been confused by a number of my entries referring to pirates. Well you see, since Bear died 2 months ago, I have been very much missing him. I have been looking for just the right tribute to his life. My wife and I have been searching for just the right headstone for our back yard when we inturn him later this month. So I decided to get his portrait tattooed on my left thigh. My theory is that "man's best friend" always sits to your left. So Bear will now, always be at my side.

The reference to pirates extends from my theory that only pirates and sailors should be allowed to have tattoos. As for women, our indigenous people of northern Canada tattoo their chins. So obviously a female getting tattooed secretly wants to be an eskimo, or sailor or pirate. But we know the later isn't a good idea because of the superstition of having a female on a boat. Usually a Kraken comes and swallows it up. At least that is what Disney taught me.

So for the last few weeks I have been studying up for my pirates exam and at the end I got my pirates license a beautiful piece done by Bob Paulin, owner of Studio123 in St. Catharines, ON. I celebrated with Mr. Christie Pirate cookies and rum.

For those of you that said I would cry - it tickled except around the knee when Bob was working over where my common peroneal nerve is available for striking. Those of you that take a real martial art (not MMA) should know were that is. Did I strike a "nerve" with that comment.

WOW Stuff

Speaking of Eskimo women, one of our guildies was lamenting a few months ago that he wanted to make a guild of just paladins. Now I am sure this isn't something new, a group of 12 year olds probably already beat us to the punch. We laughed it off in Mumble (really try this it is good), but the other night we were bored (the guildie that suggested it was on vacation and wasn't there) and decided we were going to start toons on a new realm, from scratch and form a new guild of just Dwarf Paladins. The realm we chose was Shu'Halo (NA) and the guild we created is called, "Seal Cub Clubbers Club". In case you haven't figured out the connection from Eskimo women to WOW it is - Seal Cubs.

Now we are having fun running around as just dwarf paladins, but I am sure we will have to have a talk about other classes as well if we decide to run any of the big boy content when we get to that stage. However; I think we will limit the races to dwarves (so whichever classes are associated with dwarves), from there we may have to extend it to other vertically challenged races (gnomes).

I have never played a dwarf - so I am seeing their content for the first time. You can actually see more of the content. Following behind a Tauren is a bitch - even totally panned out.

Anyway, off to help my daughter pack for her 2 week basic training course in Trenton (she is in Air Cadets). Before she goes, I think we will practise a bit of our baton stuff. Just in case she needs to throw a beating into an unruly male cadet while she is away.

ARRR!

Monday, August 1, 2011

WOW - and not the MMORPG

It has been a couple of weeks since I last wrote an article, and I did plan to actually write it a couple days ago, however; I had to wait the couple of extra days to allow my eyes to heal. Now before you start sending me emails to find out where you can send flowers, my eye injury is more of a figurative statement than a physical injury.

You see, I went to our local Ribfest on Saturday. Every town tries to have one of these events. They get a park, load it up with tractor trailer sized BBQ'ing units, a band shell (with questionable talent), and some of the worst dressed patrons - then tell the world how wonderful it is in City X - come on down for a great time, with probably less than 2% going to charity. Ours is hosted by a charitable organization, I would love to see the bookkeeping for this event.

The thing is, I am not writing this to complain about the whole charity event thing. I am writing this to discuss the people watching that one can do at these events.

The title of my article - "WOW - and not the MMORPG" speaks volumes towards what my eyes had to go through while at this even. All I wanted was to spend my $20 and get me a box of ribs. Little did I know I would be shelling out big bucks on cornea transplant surgery and counselling in the future.

Here is a summary of what my eyes saw:

  1. The guy with the pink plastic cowboy hat. Now, if he thinks he can rock a pink hat that is fine (he couldn't). But his girlfriend in tow - what was she thinking? She should have warned him that he looked like and idiot.
  2. Picture this. Thigh high leather boots, micro mini skirt, white tank top with ample cleavage bouncing off her knees everytime she took a step. Your eyes burning? Yeah she had to be pushing 65.
  3. Itsy bitsy teenie weenie yellow polka dot bikini - on the very large boned woman with no sarong. Where did her bottoms go?
  4. and finally a general statement - Where was FACS? Some of these teenagers - WOW - Some of them should have their parents arrested for what they were wearing.
There was many other sights worth mentioning. However; my head was swivelling so fast I couldn't take mental notes fast enough. There was a lot of neurological overload.

That is it, just a short one. Having to relive those sights in the recesses of my mind is becoming too much.

Have a good one.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Really? That was Bruschetta... /FACEPALM

OK here we are Saturday morning, coffee on my handy dandy electric cup warmer, sitting at the computer about to blog the weeks events. The problem is, I can really only remember back as far as Thursday.

So the blog will be condensed from Thursday on. I really should write some of this stuff down during the week. Our company doctor says I don't have Alzheimer's, just age and work stress that is causing me to forget stuff. Enough said about that.

In Thursday's Jiu-Jitsu class we continued the module on knife fighting. Very interesting stuff so far. We had a few more new students join. On Friday I had my first chiropractic appointment since coming out of retirement. It was easier to tell the doctor what wasn't hurting than to go through the list of what was. The chiropractor asks me, " What is the issue getting back into it?" So far I would have to say, "my cardio". Have to work on my cardio. For that I have been trying to do the video work out on our Kanect. It's pretty good except the damn chick that helps me with my cool down. I do the Zen warm down and she keeps telling me I am not doing the technique right. "Like HELL", I scream at the TV. I have been doing this stuff for 33 years.

My daughter had her music leasson Friday evening. She is taking guitar lessons from an outstanding teacher. I gave her a bit of a challenge last night and I think it is paying off. She is practicing as we speak. Anyway, her music teacher plays in a two man band called "Off the Cuff" and if you are in the Niagara Area and you hear of them, catch their show. That is what we did later in the evening yesterday. Most enjoyable.

This leads me into the rant of the week. They were playing at a local bar called, "The Jordan House". Yes I said it, they have to hear it and give their "chef" (I definitely am using that term lightly) a slap. I ordered Bruschetta and it had to be the worst I have had in my entire life. I could probably get better at a restaurant that specializes in Indian Cuisine.

The toppings were not discernable from the meat used at Taco Bell. Did they throw everything into a blender with a gallon of balsamic vinegar, caulking gun it onto a slice of bread and throw it into the oven for 10 minutes? It was truly horrible.

So Jordon House "chef", here is how you make Bruschetta.

Tomatos
Red Onion
Garlic Cloves
Basil - fresh
Sea Salt
Peppercorn
Olive Oil (good quality - not vegetable oil)
Feta (this was the cheese you mentioned in your menu)

Bread (good French or Italian loaf - not the Wonder bread, or hot dog bun you used)

Take a metal bowl and...

dice tomatos
chop onion
smash garlic cloves then chop
chop some of the fresh basil (rough it up so the tasty goodness is seeping out)
sea salt - ground
pepercorn - ground

feta - you can add it now but I would wait

Mix the ingredients in a couple of tablespoons of olive oil to coat

MINI RANT ALERT
Don't go making up 15 pounds of this - make it fresh, your customers will appreciate it.

Slice the bread into elongated discs (for example if you are using a French stick) - TOAST

Spoon the bruschetta onto the toasted bread disc. Sprinkle with the feta (I would do it here) and garnish each slice with a sprig of Basil.

NEVER PUT THE BRUSCHETTA IN THE OVEN WHEN TOASTING THE BREAD. ANYONE WHO DOES THAT TO "MELT THE CHEESE" ARE HEATHENS (and not in the religious sense - please no nasty emails. I could have placed the word "Idiot" there but didn't want to insult the idiots)

That's it. Everyone - try the recipe, then go to the Jordan House and try theirs. I will be waiting on the Kudos I know will be flooding in.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Canada D'eh

Happy Canada Day, I will throw in a Happy Independence Day as well since that is around the corner and our friends to the south are gearing up for that on Monday.

I found myself pondering a couple of bizarre topics during my Canada Day festivities yesterday: household chores, what did my wife slip into my drink to make me feel like this, municipal government and this morning it was Cialis.

Household Chores

I had an urge yesterday to clean out the closet from hell. It is the walk in just outside my home office. Only took a couple of hours but I managed to organize and remove a pile of stuff for the garbage man (of course I had this urge after the garbage man already passed by), as well as, the household hazardous waste people. It is amazing how much e-waste you accumulate. This closet must have been where electronics go to die. The question is, Why? Why on a perfectly good holiday would I decide to clean out a closet? Maybe I will apply for a government grant for that study.

The Drink

We went to the bar for dinner yesterday. When I got home around 6:00pm I had to lay down. I swear the wife slipped me a roofie, I woke up and couldn't remember a damn thing from the previous 2 hours. Wait that is old age.

Municipal Government

We decided to take it easy last night. We were not going to go down to any of the usual places to get jostled around, pick pocketed, play count the "tramp stamp", watch fireworks then sit in traffic for 2 hours to try and move 5Km to get home. Instead, my wife and I sat in our backyard and had a campfire and ate s'mores.

You may be thinking.. OK not sure what you would be thinking, but theoretically in St. Catharines where I live, having a backyard campfire is against one of the many stupid by-laws we have to live with. I understand that there may be a need to regulate stupidity, but if you can demonstrate your due diligence I think you should be exempt from the by-law.

For example, in St. Catharines if you go to the park for a picnic and have a BBQ, it has to be a charcoal version. You could potentially get a fine if you show up with a small 1L propane bottle version. So for those of you that have your propane training (for forklifts etc) the training means nothing. However; a hillbilly can fill up a hibachi with charcoal and a gallon of gasoline and light a match and that is perfectly OK. Then when done, throw the hot coals into the woods next to where they were picnicking. Brilliant.

So we chose a night when most of the idiots would come out to play. I figured if a fireman or by-law officer showed up, I would cover him with due diligence and if he still issued the ticket I would fight it in court. Perfect opportunity to shed some light on how stupid municipal government is.

The year before this is how I prepared:

  • Purchased a fire pit (with mesh cover)
  • Created an 8'x8' patio stone pad
  • Created this pad 50' from all permanent structures (i.e. neighbours houses, my house)
  • Obtained a 20lb fire extinguisher
  • Trained family on use of said fire extinguisher (documented)
  • Wrote a policy and procedure for the use of the fire pit
  • Trained family on said policy and procedure (documented)
On the night of the event we:
  • Designated a DFPC and a SO (Designated Fire Pit Coordinator, S'mores Officer respectively)
  • Banned alcohol like most provincial parks and conservation areas on statutory holidays
We also made observations, like the house 2 doors to the east of us. That clown set off their fireworks on their deck 5 feet from the house. Was funny when they got a rocket embedded in the soffit of their house and all you could hear was them running around trying to get the garden hose.

The next observation came from the local newspaper, yeah the one that prints articles that occurred about 5 days earlier. In this edition, there was an article that Welland had removed the By-Law for back yard campfires. Welland, holy crap, have you seen the crowd that lives in Welland, I am surprised that the city didn't invoke a match ban instead.

Any way, no By-Law officers showed up last night. We are thinking of having a campfire tonight as well (we are rebels), weather permitting of course. The wind has to be less than 4km/hr or we pull the plug. That is what it says in the procedure.

Cialis

This morning I arose still suffering from the after affects of the roofie my wife put in my drink last night. I noticed my parents (they live next door - and no not the fireworks idiots) gardening in our back yard. They do that all the time. Well, they have bags of mulch everywhere, rakes etc. I go to the bathroom and head to the kitchen for a coffee. I look out the kitchen window and "Bam", no one is there. The bags of mulch are laying there, the rakes are laying there, my mom's gardening gloves are laying there. I am thinking maybe my parents decided to have a Cialis moment. I thank god that it was my moms gloves laying in the yard and not her panties. Do mom's wear panties or is it a different term (hip huggers maybe)?

Did you look at the link for Cialis - the active ingredient is called "Tadalafil".

Lets break it down - The guy takes one "Tada", she "laf's" and you feel "il".

Pharmacists have a great sense of humor.

WOW

Patch 4.2 is out. I think the beginning quest line is incredibly sappy. Thrall needs some Cialis and take Aggra into the back room of an Orgrimmar pub. Thank God you can skip the cinematics. Eleven 85's down four to go in the pre-Firelands quest chain. When I am done these quests if I hear Aggra whine about Thrall's feelings one more time I may snap.

Any way - have a great weekend. I hope all of you play safe.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Aftermath

Well I'm back.

It has been a couple weeks since Bear passed and it has been tough. During this time I found that whenever I was in the backyard cutting the grass or just sitting on the patio, I was reduced to a blithering idiot in about 5 minutes. Whenever I look out at the backyard all I could see is that little Golden Retriever we brought home almost 14 years ago playing in the yard. I want to thank Ken for sending me a passage that has been very inspiring and has helped. I just think it will take a little more time.

Funny thing though, since his passing I think I have cracked my WOW addiction and our toilet works better. The WOW thing I understand, the toilet thing I can't figure out. Both are good things. I played a little over the last couple of weeks, but found myself working on other things as well.

WOW

A guildie tells me he did the math. We would have to complete all the dungeon challenges every week for 6 weeks, just to get to a level 3 guild. So for the time being playing WOW will be just for fun and relaxation. It has been fun to run various instances with guildies. You think Blizzard could program it so that guild leveling would be pro-rated based on active members. We have many toons but only 4 active members and we really don't want to open up recruiting.

Jiu-Jitsu

For those of you that follow me on Facebook or Twitter, you will no doubt have seen my status update - "Retired from Jiu-Jitsu for 6 years. Daughter started last Thursday. I unretired last night. Many ouchies." To be honest at the time I felt like a water balloon hitting the concrete a couple ties but when it was over, I felt wonderful. I am glad I am back at it.

Many years ago, I wrote a book on the martial art of jiu-jitsu, unfortunately my only electronic copy was lost when one of my hard drives failed. This renewed interest in the martial art has persauded me to retype it. This is a good thing. When I initially wrote the book I did all the illustrations. Yeah - my stick figures are bad. I now have an illustrator re-doing all the artwork for me. I am so excited.

Road Trip

As for work, I am teaching at a University this week. So in preparation, I researched some issues that have happened in research labs. Yikes - most of you have read my rants regarding high school science departments, I think some of the accidents that happened in these labs are far worse. What is wrong with these people? Do they think they are too smart for disaster to effect them? This week may be painful.

On the way here though, I witnessed a blind guy (cane and all) crossing the highway - incredibly brave or incredibly stupid. Take your pick.

That's it

I think I call it on this weeks installment. I need to work my way back into it. I think I will still blog the funny, the WOW and now I think I will include some writing on the Martial Arts. Maybe next week I will rant about the term - Mixed Martial Arts. Why not call it Jiu-Jitsu?








Saturday, June 4, 2011

Good Bye Bear


BEAR

June 13, 1997 - June 4, 2011

"We are all going to miss you so much."

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Does Someone Have to Die...

Good morning everyone. For those of you that read my blog as part of your normal routine I must apologize. I will not be funny (at least funny HaHa) nor will it be about World of Warcraft. I promise I will write something lighter next week. For those that know me in real life, it will be about my pet peeve. Over the last two days this topic has been keeping me up at night. I no longer can keep it in.

I usually start this rant with the question - In Ontario what do you think are the most dangerous jobs? After some guiding I usually get them to say miner, steel worker, high altitude construction worker. Yes they are dangerous jobs, however; there are rules and regulations that police these occupations and violating these rules can get an individual person a fine of up to $100,000 and a couple years in jail.

"No", I say, what I was looking for was "High School Teacher". Their faces tilt like a Doberman Pincher. I give them a moment to try and figure it out. I then help them out by saying, "It is the occupation that routinely ignores all of the various safety legislations and inserts untrained individuals into situations because they feel they are above the law." "The occupation that feels that nothing bad can ever happen to them because they are in a school and that their Union is awesome."

I have touched on schools before in my blog, if you cannot remember my pearls of wisdom you can re-read them. My suggested order is 'What a Week', The Title', 'Smouldering' and finally 'Statement of the Day'.

I have been in the environmental manangement industry for 24 years and my job function has evolved to where for the past 10 years or so I have been consulting with customers on health & safety matters, fire code concerns and yes even environmental management legislation. Over the past 5 years I have been working with a couple of school boards because they realized that they were so far behind. The problem is the teachers are fighting any proposed changes to make them compliant tooth and nail. "Why?" they ask, "We shouldn't be subject to this." "We are teachers, this is outrageous."

Wow, what I have seen would get a normal business fined and potentially shutdown, but in a school it will go totally undetected. Why? Because the Ministry of Labour or the Ministry of Environment won't go into a Ministry of Education governed institution. That would make the government look bad.

Christ, I have even been reading a document from the Science Teachers Association of Ontario that blatantly tells teachers they can dump hazardous waste down the drain. Any other company caught doing this would be crucified. But it's ok you see. They have a disclaimer stating that all of the opinions are those of the writers and not the association and you shouldn't necessarily follow what they are saying. I have witnessed it, I was at a school picking up some other waste when I saw a teacher pouring a tray of liquid down the drain. I asked what he was doing and he replied, "The STAO guide tells me this is OK."

We have tried to get into other school boards to handle their hazardous wastes and are told they don't create any. That they treat it and pour it down the drain. Hmmm, any other company that does that needs a Certificate of Approval (license) for both the treatment of the waste and the discharge of the resultant material to the sewer. Why are they any different? They are not. They are governed by regulations. They are considered an industrial establishment. They consider themselves - above the law.

Why now? Why am I ranting again on this subject? Oddly enough last Friday I was at my favourite school board for an update. My contact is valiantly fighting what I think is a losing battle. She wanted to implement some more procedures and the teachers are saying, 'no'. God, I feel like I am the Jamie Oliver of safety. I am trying so hard but nobody gets it. She said I will have to go back into the schools in the fall to do another inspection. She then says, we will probably have to extend the inspections to the shop and art departments.

"Why?", I ask. She tells me about the death in Ottawa of the shop student. She says, "You were right." I hadn't heard, I have been so busy the last week or so I usually do my news catch up on weekends. My heart sinks. I remember last summer in the midst of the threats from the teachers regarding my reports on their unsafe practices, I told my contact, "Does someone have to die before they will change?" Now someone has. My heart goes out to the family and friends of the student that passed away. To the other students that witnessed the incident and were hurt.

So now the Ministry of Labour is involved. However; my gut feeling is that nothing will become of this tradegy. They will chalk it up to an unfortunate accident. The chance to send a message lost. That poor student will have died in vain. Sure the Board will say it is going to review procedures and nothing will change.

From what I have seen in some schools, this is what should happen.

The teacher should be charged with criminal negligence causing death. Cutting into a used drum is one of the stupidest acts on the planet. However; instructing someone to do it is negligent and criminal.

Then the Ministry of Labour should inspect every school in the province and fine the teachers, the Union and Boards like they would any other business in Ontario. The debt of the province would be gone with all this extra cash. Oh wait, my tax dollars would most likely be paying these fines and I think this is an election year. So again I fear - Nothing will change.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

A Good Day - Shot to Hell

Ok, today is going to be my WOWcentric blog post. I am sure when I regale you with the details of my questing from last Monday you will easily be able to relate this to a person you actually have daily dealings with.

First some background info:

I have a few alts, many of which are 85. I am in a small guild, maybe a dozen individuals in total with only five or so active participants. We have worked our way up to a whopping guild level 2 powerhouse. We managed to coordinate our schedules in order to actually pull together a 5 man, however lopsided it is. So far it is 4 lowbies being blasted through an instance by an 85.

I do have a few mid level toons available and decided to work on my level 60 Enhancement Shaman. First off, I haven't played him in ages and when I went into my first instance of the day my DPS totally sucked. It was like 250. Now, something has to be wrong. I talked to my buddy to verify my gear (which at 60 included a smattering of level 55 pieces), my priority list, my weapon imbues and my totem selection. I reviewed my favourite Wow Insider articles. What was wrong?

When I do select a talent layout from WOWpopular I tend to print it out. So I figured I would check my talent selection. Now my talents were not refunded but there was a discrepancy. Apparently 2 talent points were in a talent on my print out, that no longer appeared in the tree. They were part of a "new" talent - Seasoned Winds. OK, time to fix the talent tree. Check

Well the DPS started to go up but not as good as I had hoped. Time to instance and quest to replace my crappy pre-BC gear I still had. By the time I was done Monday I was level 67 and had some new gear.

So that was the background. Now the problem - I did about 10 instances that day. All of the pug groups were pretty good. No complaints really, except for the last one and this is where my story begins.

Sethekk Halls

DK Tank
Priest
DK DPS
Enh Shaman (me)
Mage

Menagerie of beasties that either fear or mind control.

So here we are, DK Tank thinks he is all that, decides to run through the first room and collect everyone. Enh Shaman (me) drops totems including - Tremor Totem

FYI - If you don't play a shaman the Tremor Totem IMO is broken (I am just used to the old way it worked and apparently this "tank" was under the same impression). Only breaks one "fear" then is used up. There is then a one minute cooldown before it can be dropped again.

But the problem, there was 4 creatures that could fear. Well let the chain fearing begin. We managed to survive but of course began the 35 word expletive filled sentence from the tank. Now I have the parental controls - language filter on for when my daughter plays with only the words "retarded", "shaman", "tremor totem" actually being legible.

I begin to write my response - Dude (I begin), I understand there is a need to over compensate especially when there is the saying, "the bigger the pulls, the smaller the penis", but you should really understand the mobs you are pulling and your group make up.

I explain, the changes in the Tremor Totem.

I explain that the rest of the group could help as well (now these interrupts may or may not have worked). DK's have at least 2 silencing type spells each, the mage has counterspell, I was trying with my wind shear.

So in addition to my tremor totem there were 6 other "fear" interruptions available. Why were "you/they" not assisting in this obvious poorly thought out "pull".

I hit the return key...

Time passes - the response.

FU (and the Tank leaves group)

I did however get an apology from the rest of the group and the new tank we got from the queue was awesome. So maybe this was a good thing. But for a while afterwards I was a little "hurt", what was a very positive leveling day, this incident started to bring me down.

Have you run into this type of situation? Has someone tried to slam you for not knowing your own class?

Let me know.

Finally, I think we had 2 dry days this week - I saw a big yellow ball in the sky today. What is that?

Prayers go out to Manitoba and Quebec (flooding) and the US Midwest (tornadoes).

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Inspiration

I was truly blessed today. I went to church and I came out of it enlightened. I was able to come up with this truly inspired blog article. Now, I go to church from time to time, my daughter is even in the midst of preparing for her confirmation. So I am no stranger to going. Although, the congregation does seem to be a little surprised when I show up. All these jokes about wanting me to sign the guest book.

Maybe it is all the time I get while my daughter is in her "chat room" with the other kids that I get to reflect in quiet solitude the past weeks events. Maybe, it is a sign from the "big guy" that he reads my blog too. Maybe.

When I wrote last weeks article I forgot to include one thing. Which, might be because I didn't go to church and that is why it didn't come to me. So I am going to lead off with it today.

Bluetooth

Now Bluetooth is a rather remarkable invention, it allows us to connect with our computers and cellphones wirelessly. Which, keeps us from getting fines, especially with respect to the latter device while driving. But why is it when you sit in a mall some guys are still wearing theirs? Dudes, Bluetooth is so you can use your phones while in your cars. When you get out of the car leave your headset and take only your phone.

Guys, you look retarded. Chicks will NOT be attracted to it and finally, judging by the looks of the guys that seem to wear their headsets all the time - How many calls do you expect from your mothers?

Zebra Hair

So during the week I had a rather exceptional sneezing fit. Of course it had to happen while driving. I must have sneezed about a dozen times. My hands were covered with phlegm and of course, not a napkin or tissue could be found. Needless to say, those pants went into the laundry, as soon as I got home. I was concerned, so I went to the bathroom and decided to look up my nose to see what was going on in there.

First question: What colour is nose hair suppose to be?

When I took a look I saw both black and white hair. I truly looked like I had snorted a small zebra. Really, I understand the whole going grey thing, but I thought it was isolated to the head (including beard and moustache), not nose hairs and nether regions. I can hardly wait to start using "Just for Men" crotch colourant.

Second question: What is the average length of a nose hair?

These couple of hairs were bugging me. Tickling actually, to a point that I grabbed a pair of tweezers and pulled them out. Holy crap, they were almost 3/4 of an inch long. I don't think that is right. More research is needed.

Flash Point of Baileys

Now I don't want a pile of negative feedback on this. I have been known to, from time to time, to spike my coffee with Baileys, pour it into a travel mug and then enjoy sipping it while receiving the Word of the Lord on Sunday mornings. This morning was no exception, however; when I arrive in my pew and dialed open my cup, the Baileys vapour coming out was almost overpowering. I was so happy there were no ignition sources close by or it may have FLASHED. I guess I need to be a little more awake when I am making my coffee in the morning.

Baileys is my back up to bacon, since I am not quite sure how I would smuggle a pound of cooked bacon into church. So for today and every Sunday. I think we should allow the phrase, "Everything is better with Baileys."

Roommate Agreement, S15 P4 - Unknown Women for the Purpose of Coitus

So - are you interested so far? Are you trying to figure out how I went from church Baileys to unknown women coitus. I am going to tell you.

Last night my son was a little out of the ordinary. He laundered his clothes, showered (I started to think he was ill), brushed his teeth and asked if he could borrow the car. That he would only be out for a few moments. I said, "sure", I think because of all the hygiene that was thrown at me all at once. Well out he goes. A few moments later he returns a "friend" in tow. He paused at the rec room to see how my movie I was watching was (I had the lights off so visibility was poor). His friend said 'hi' and made a comment. I was unfamiliar with the tone. My son's friends are all short, or more round. This one was not matching up to my internal database. It wasn't until they were in his room and the door closed that I registered the pitch to be that of a female.

I was caught in a place that was new to me. The 'two thumbs up' dad moment. Or that of concern that it would turn out to be a mid-operation transgender and I should warn him. You see my son seems to be "blossoming" a bit late. Which is a good thing considering he always has money squirrelled away. Having a girlfriend doesn't usually afford you that luxury.

Any way, I inserted a cat into his room as a spy, in as much to have an excuse to open the door to see them watching TV, the cat you see likes hanging out in his room, so the perfect door opening excuse. I then go up to do my WOW research for my next blog article (which was going to be todays - but now that I am side tracked with this gem I am going to save it for another time).

Fast forward to this morning.

I am sitting waiting for church to start, trying to avoid being detected as having alcohol in my coffee or bursting into flames due to Baileys vapour flash, when my mom asks. "Did Dustin (honestly - not his real name) have to work this morning? I saw him leave really early in the car?" (My parents live in the home next to ours -she is I think the neighbourhood watch committee as well)

"Hmm" (pause for effect) "He didn't take the car to work because I drove it to church this morning." In my head I figured, he had to sneak the girl out early and take her home, come back and drop off the car, and then walk the 5 minutes to work. Thanks mom, you always want the "ace" when it comes to parenting.

The best part of this whole incident was when I got home from church and told my wife (she doesn't usually come with me - she can't hold her liquor). You could see the dawning on her face the phrase, 'what goes around comes around.' She was probably the worst offender when it came to this stuff when she was younger.

"I don't know if I can approve of this!", she exclaims.

'Hypocrite', I think in my head. (That was one of them fancy terms I learned in church today)

I think we both can't wait for my son to come home from work. Have a great afternoon, I know I will.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Pint of Mer - Lot Please

This past weekend was pretty busy, mother's day and my wife's birthday on the same day this year. My daughter going gliding with her Air Cadet Squadron. Having to go on a training journey and my wife wanting to come along. I guess she thought Coburg, ON was going to be somewhat equivalent to a couple of days in Las Vegas.

I started this journey by taking my wife out for dinner last Friday night. Pretty fancy restaurant (they have cloth napkins), when a buddy and a few of his friends and their wives come in. I have participated in several LAN parties with them, it starts with several COD games and then deteriorates into a drunken Wii Bowling Event (thank God everyone remains clothed) and who can get the most consecutive gutter balls after drinking a dozen Russian Vodka shots. One of his friends travels to Moscow a lot and usually brings something back for us to kill brain cells with.

Well he can't see me from where he is seated, so I decide to send his wife a drink. I think it was a $15 martini. That almost caused a ruckus until he realized it was me and I was jerking his chain. Interestingly enough I still got him in shit with his wife. Apparently, I am the only person who has ever sent her a drink. He was beaten for it not being him.

I am lingering too long on that evening. I will fast forward. Sunday, I make breakfast art for my wife and daughter. For those of you that view my blog by following the link from my Facebook page, my wife posted the hashbrown pattie and bacon flower growing out of toast in front of a big round egg sun that I made her for Mother's Day/Birthday. For my daughter I carved a glider out of hashbrown patties using toast for the ground and little bacon birds. I never got a photo of that one. I am :(

After the breakfast festivities we dropped our daughter off at the airport and my wife and I headed to Coburg. We took the scenic route. It was nice. We checked in and started looking for a restaurant for dinner. We went to one place and it looked like it was going down the horrible road. So we decided to go to another. Dinner was good.

Now we are at the part of the trip that this article is titled after. Now I am always making a bit of fun of the area whenever I come out here to do some training. I think I have several articles that describe the locals as hill billies. Well, I never saw them since they were in the booth behind me.

The waitress comes up and...

"Can I get you any drinks?"

(In your best hill billie drawl)

"Yes, I would like some of this here $5.95 a glass Mur-Loc."

(My wife laughs and asks me if she was referring to the WOW creature. "I don't know", I exclaim.)

The patron rephrases, "Make it a pint of the MER - LOT?" (I would have to say the waitress was pretty cool, she even said it back to the patron by pronouncing the "Mer-Low" as "Mer-Lot" in order not to embarrass the patron. Not that the damage wasn't already done.)

A PINT glass of Mer-Lot, that there is culture.

WOW Stuff

Only played a little this week. Still afraid to try and heal (especially on heroics), because the PUGS I have been in the last couple of evenings have been absolutely horrible. I am tempted to actually do an article specifically on WOW in the coming days to rant about Pugs and few other WOW related things. We will see.

Have a great evening.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Cyclist Wannabes

This will be a short post today. I am at home suffering with what may be a tumor. However; I am sure it is just my back telling my head that it hates me. But then again, when I called into the office, there appears that several of us are suffering with the same basic symtoms. Anyway, I decided that I was going to make use of the time I have today and get a few reports completed that I have been avoiding the last couple weeks. I managed to get a 50% success rating.

It turns out that a big project I am working on is in jeopardy because I can't find a truck in order to deliver the product. It appears that at the end of the month it is difficult to find a truck rental. Of course, of all things, I forget the dreaded moving day rush at the vehicle rental store. Hopefully, things will work out.

Oh and my dad is messing around in the backyard today, my internet goes down, he calls on the phone to say he inadvertently disconnected it at the pole.

Chainsaw

Just before the stroke hit, he tells me that the tree cutting business neighbours are working in our backyard and disconnected it at the pole for a few minutes in order to cut one branch that they knew was going to cause a problem.

Ok, glad I am taking a blood thinner.

So, I decide I am going to step out a bit. My lovely wife left me a grocery list. From now on I think I am going to buy groceries before I pay bills. Its just easier that way. I ask her, "Where should I go?", and before all you readers scream at your screens, "Grocery store!" I wanted to know where I should go, considering the fact I spent all our money paying the bills and had a very limited amount for groceries.

I could go to:

  • 2nd Mortgage Zehrs
  • It was fresh a month ago Sobeys
  • Ghetto Food Basics, or
  • What do you mean I can't have a cart because I don't have a Quarter Freshco?

My wife told me to go to Freshco - however; I didn't know I needed a quarter until I got there (I don't carry cash anymore). I also went ill equipped to carry the groceries out of the store. They don't have bags, no boxes, so I had to buy a couple of the "green" grocery bags to get the items to the car.

I must admit that the amount I paid was about half what I was expecting. So at least that part of the trip was pleasant.

So, the article title, where does that fit into the days events? I am going to tell you.

I am driving home and my route takes me down a road that was converted to allow for a couple of bike lanes. So here is a couple of ladies, fully decked out in cyclist gear. Full spandex, enough advertising on their jerseys to make Tiger Woods wet himself (or was that the spandex). Riding down the road, totally not staying within their lane. They put the "lane" there so you can drive in it. They didn't put the line on the road so you can drive on the "line". Finally, they go to make a turn and neither of them know the arm signals for making a turn. Painful.

Apparently, spandex does NOT make the cyclist (maybe they were headed to Bingo and just being green about it). Oh god what am I saying. Riding a bike to Bingo, that's crazy talk.

That's it, going to chew a few more Advil's, pray for a break in the weather so my head doesn't hurt any more. If you read this before you head home, Hun, we are having chopped up weiners and fake potatoes for dinner (I picked you up something special as a substitute). Yummy!

Friday, April 15, 2011

The New Me - Update #2

It's Friday, five days into the "New Me" experience. I took the last couple days off in the exercise department. Basically I was too damn sore to move, I kept up the eating well though.

Speaking of eating well, have you seen the commercials regarding the potential to have 10lbs of fecal matter trapped in your body if you only "go" once a day. I said to myself, "Hmm". So on Monday I started to do a dose of Metamucil everyday. It said 3 times a day but I was not that daring. The original commercial that started me on this was for a product called "Colonblow", which really scared me. Anyway, have you tried Metamucil lately? They have tried to make it taste better. The stuff I tried had a wonderful cherry flavour with a delightful sandy after taste.

After four days I was still only "going" once a day. Until today. My body made a "huffing" sound (for those of you not up on your animal sounds, that is the sound a bull makes before it charges - very important to know for the purpose of this blog), then it was like San Fermin.

I flung my covers off, too bad our cats were on the bed, then our old dog was flopping around (I think it was all the pussy landing on him). I jumped up (glad that I took those two days off to recover), I ran around the bed hurdled the dog and raced down the hall headed to the bathroom. Let's just say the rest is a Finch moment. You know, the Colonblow guys were right.

Well it's off to exercise, maybe I will write a part #3 this afternoon.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

The New Me - Update #1

I thought the pain usually hits a couple of days after you work out. At least that was what I remembered it being like when I was actually in shape. For me the pain hit within approximately 5 minutes. But Tuesday is a new day. I am going to do this.

I woke up to a cat bashing his head into my face. I think he was trying to determine if I was dead. I made a non-carb breakfast and started the procrastination. I decided to do my home business accounting, because lets face it. Accounting is way more fun than exercise.

I made it down into the basement and fired up the Xbox system. Logged in as me and was horrified to see that it didn't save my profile. Well, my profile was there but because I didn't continue with the torture Monday after I finished the setup, it didn't save the fact that I actually did the set up.

So I had to start over. Age, activity level, what are you trying to accomplish? (They didn't have the answer - Thwart death)

I had to do the 2 toning and 3 cardio tests AGAIN. Oh the burn. I was successful and I didn't collapse. But now to avoid having to set it up again. I was going to get a workout session in to secure the saving of my profile.

I chose, 'Nice and Easy' (they lied). It was 6 freaking sets of 3 exercises. I am not going to make it. But I was determined to push forward. It didn't help that everytime the damn cat walked into my "play" space the exercise lady would bitch at me and I would have to do a couple of 'reps' over again.

I DID it. It was the most difficult 15 minutes of my life. That's it - 15 minutes. I even decided to do the Zen cool down program which was an additional 6 minutes. Already I am having a performance increase.

I had lunch and I am now working on this update. Tomorrow is another day with more decisions...

  1. Work out

  2. Pick up dog poop in the backyard

  3. Or both (might need a hospital bed if I choose this one)

I will leave you in suspense.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Really? Is it that bad?

First the good news. The family did a road trip to Michigan to see my best friend. We ate, drank, and laughed. We even started to plan our next visit. All the while in the back of my head I knew, that the week I had off was going to be the start of my "getting into shape". I had planned it for weeks. A couple of months ago I even bought the fitness "game" for the Xbox Kinect that we got at Christmas. You can only practise your "supa-man" so many times. Although for me it usually came across as the "aquaman". You would have to be part Sheldon to figure those couple lines out.

You know who you are.

So what happened? I was a practising martial artist, I ran several classes a week. I wilderness camped - for our honeymoon instead of going to Maui or similar, we went wilderness camping off of Lake Temagami. Only a 5 1/2 hour drive followed by an eight hour canoe and portage session. But it was worth it. Running around in my pastey white naked glory (between noon and 12:05) before the mosquitoes realized I was there.

Life happened, the dark life, having kids and saying we were too busy to exercise. The dreaded CF's (chicken finger) and plum sauce. Did you know in Michigan they are called boneless wings since chickens don't have fingers. Or so we were told.

I digress.

This morning was going to be the start of the new me. The missus went to work, I took my daughter to the orthodontist then to school and I arrived home and donned my silk short shorts, tank top and Jimmy Connors matching head and wrist band set. I should have known when the Kinect scanned me and the computer chick gasped, "oh shit" that something was about to go awry.

After the scan, was the series of questions, ok well three. Age, weight and how active. Again, clues were there. Exercise every day, exercise once or twice a week or never. This was going to hurt. I knew, "no pain, no gain", right.

Then the choice - do you want a male or female exercise assistant? I chose a female so she could "bitch" at me to keep me motivated.

The evaluation program started, a series of exercises to assist in creating the plan. It was 2 toning exercises and 3 cardio exercises. I thought I was going to die. I literally had to concentrate on not throwing up. Once that was finished there were the questions. Do you want the program tailored to help you loose weight? To tone up? To help you climb a flight of stairs without becoming winded? I chose the last one. Then I collapsed on the sofa. My computer trainer chick repeating the line, "Where are you going? Where are you going?" over and over.

I gave up for now, I decided to do some laundry. Have some cereal and decide on whether I should change my game name from "AwesomeSauce" to "HolyShitIAmOutOfShape". On the bright side the machine told me I lost 87 calories. Which I probably did while trying to control the urge to throw up that I mentioned earlier. All those stomach crunches. Easily the equivalent of about 600 sit ups.

I will try my first program exercise later today. when there is someone in the house to call 911. I don't have the "fallen and I can't get up service".

WOW Stuff

I keeping with my attempt to get fit, I decided to do the following:

  • run everywhere, no flying or riding mounts
  • do a lot of swimming off the coast of Tanaris, the water looks clean there, and with it being sunny all the time I can work on my tan
  • Only pickup fast food in Silvermoon, no one is fat there. So they must be selling all whole foods with minimal processing
I will check in with you during the week and provide updates.

If you feel the Richard Simmons photo is a little too creepy let me know and I can change it.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

The Ottawa Trip

Well I am off to Ottawa this week for work where I will be teaching some courses for a couple of our customers. It's the first night but I noticed a few things on my drive up today, which was about 5 1/2 hours by the way.

Day 1

There were three things that make you go, "Hmmm"

First: Did you notice that the closer you get to Ottawa, the cheaper gasoline gets?

Second: I drove up on Highway 7, why is it that people have some beautiful properties, but feel it necessary to make them look like a scrapyard?

Third: Finally, the construction between Carleton Place and Highway 417 isn't done yet. It is going on at least 3 years. I find it highly amusing that their make work program is still underway.

I will check in over the next couple days to let you know how things are going.

Day 2


Completed the confined space rescue training. I was spent. Nothing too exciting happened that evening. I ate some meatloaf, was pretty good.

Day 3


Breakfast was good although I was getting creeped out by the plastic cocks (err chickens) watching me. Glad the boss saved the day.

Went on a H&S walk about. Was humoured when the guy I was watching realized half way thru the pouring of an ethyl ether bottle (with no PPE or ventilation) that maybe he should be using PPE and ventilation.

From there I had to take a 1.5 hour drive one way to service a customer (not the fun servicing either). Realized that I would be passing the Calabogie Nudist Colony (has something to do with an uncle-in-law).

Well I decided to stop in to get a pamphlet. They told me I couldn't stay because I "didn't measure up." What were they trying to say?

I am now printing out training packages for a class that was sprung on me at the last minute - hate you Matt. 10:30 and I only have 8 more to go, started at about 6:30pm - UGH. 11:00pm - out of ink driving back to the hotel. Four training packages short.

Day 4

Teaching a Transportation of Dangerous Goods course today. The location is about an hour or so from my hotel. I noticed driving up this morning that satellite radio is not what it is supposed to be cracked up to be. I have been in this vehicle for almost a week and they appear to play the same five songs over and over again.

Had dinner with Matt and one of our customers. Was fun, watched Toronto Maple Leafs get obliterated again.

Day 5

Last day of training, rather close to the hotel. I am teaching a Basic Spill Response course. It was a good group and I am very pleased with the outcome. I am now back at the hotel completing my invoicing and answering emails. Pretty soon I have to decide where I want to eat for dinner.

I am thinking about "Mucho Burrito", but then I think about my 6 hour car ride tomorrow. Without a colostomy bag, I can see a world of problems. I think this may be a game time decision.

Something caught my eye. In my hotel room I have the coffee station. Maybe I will make a pot, I read the fine print of my room agreement and the coffee station is free (unlike the bottle of water that is calling to me, I made the mistake a while back and had to pay $7.00 for the $0.99 bottle of water).

What exactly is "coffee colourant" made of? That is what the whitener called. OK I searched the Internet. Putting "coffee colorant" in the search line, I retrieve may references to coffee colored hair colorant, lip stick color (brown lip stick, that puckered only looks like one thing) and how to colour homemade soaps. Nothing on coffee colourant for you know, colouring coffee. Lost interest, can't be bothered searching coffee whitener.

Day 6

Friday morning. Finally, 6 hours from home and the start of my vacation. I will be heading out soon. I just finished my disks of sugar (at the hotel they call them - waffles) and I am about to check out. I am tightening my running shoes in anticipation of a company credit card NOT working. I hope I can get to the truck before the counter person can react.

WOW Stuff

Been away, the hotel Interent doesn't have the horse power to play Farmville let alone WOW. I will report on WOW next week sometime.

Here it is - done. To use a famous quote from Bilbo Baggins - "I will be leaving now, goodbye." As mentioned, I am beginning my vacation this afternoon. Yes, I will be writing about my "Tony Packos Odessey avec Family". Only in Ottawa a week and I am fluent in French - notice the "avec" which means "with". I am so bilingual now.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Is That a Gourd in Your Pocket...

Is that a gourd in your pocket, or you just happy to see me?

I was at church on Sunday, we were having a pot-luck lunch. I brought my "Mexican Spaghetti", and maybe if you are good I will share the recipe, when someone I have not seen in ages came over and we started to chat. The typical stuff about the wife, kids, work etc. After he left I realized that it has been almost 17 years since I almost tore off my penis.

Right now you are probably sitting at your computers mouths agape, you may have even sprayed your monitor with coffee or an other beverage depending on the time of day you are reading this. But, I find everytime I come to think of that day, I laugh my ass off. The whole story is actually quite funny. Guess what? I am going to telling to you.

Did you feel the suspense? I just got back from dinner. I have been away for about 2 hours. I am in beautiful Lindsay, Ontario and if you follow my wife's tweets , I am going to be teaching a course in Transportation of Dangerous Goods tomorrow.

One thing about the restaurant I ate at, please teach your wait staff about serving wine. My guy filled my wine glass (I use that term loosely) to within 1mm of the rim of the glass. Even sober I wouldn't be able to swirl and sniff the wine I ordered. Also, in Lindsay, $12 buys you a litre of Australian Shiraz. Yikes, was I wreaked. I also noticed while tipsy, my hotel room has 2 of the exact same painting in my room. One over my couch and one over my bed.

Anyways, back to my penis.

About 18 years ago, I just separated from my first wife, and I was trying to balance my life with my son who was about 3 years old at the time. Since I was teaching Jiu-Jitsu at the YMCA, I had a few privileges. So I decided to take him to an open swim. We splashed around for about an hour, I am sure it was fun. Due to the upcoming events, I can't be sure.

So we finished our swim. We are back in the shower room. I have my son showered off and I am in the midst of showering myself. I washed my hair, pits etc. and decide to take off my swim trunks and wash the "parts". I reached into my Addidas shorts (that's what we wore back then) and grasped the tie string. I pulled it. Not a whimpy pull, but picture how you would pull the cord on an outboard motor. I saw the stars, I felt the pain. I dropped to my knees on the terazzo floor. My little guy had worked his way through the loop of the perfect shorts bow I had tied. OMG (back then it wasn't OMG, it was the full - "Oh My God"). As I lay there, writhing in pain, my son was screaming, "what do I do?" I couldn't think. All I could picture was the cutting of a block of clay with the "wire" from high school art class. I was afraid to look in my shorts.

My son saw the emergency phone, he picked up the receiver and on the other end I could hear who picked it up. You see it was sort of a speaker phone just incase CPR was required. Believe me it was close. I digress. It was Victor, the flaming homosexual (not that there is anything wrong with that.) Again OMG. My son told him what had happened. Victor said he would be right up to "untangle" my manhood. I screamed that it would be unnecessary and that as soon as I stopped crying I would be fine. He tried to insist, I think I threatened his life at that point.

After a while I gathered the courage to look into my shorts. There it was. The loop encircling my part was no wider than a centimetre in diameter. I gulped, "I hope it will still work", I thought to myself. I got both hands in there and backed off the loop and relieved the pressure on the little guy. I managed to stand and stagger, son in tow, to my locker to get dressed. As I left the YMCA that night, Victor offered artifical respiration. Yuck.

I got home and applied some ice hoping the swelling would go down. Next morning I took a look and found the little guy looking like the gourd I have pictured above. The bruising stayed for about 6 weeks. Literally, I was purple from my waist to my knees.

Happily, I can say it still works, because when I got remarried I was able to produce a beautiful baby girl. Who, is growing up quicker than I would have hoped. Your a goof Nathan!

WOW Stuff

You know, other than procrastinating on trying to get my archeology completed on one of my alts, I am really enjoying working on my professions. I am also afraid of actually queuing any of my alts as a healer. With all the articles I have read on WOW Insider regarding the changes in healing, I have not had the balls. Based on my story above, I almost didn't have the bat (LOL) to try.

Well I need to sober up. I hope my future headache isn't too intense when I am trying to teach tomorrow.

Have a good week all.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Virgin No More

I am no longer a virgin, that would be a Bed & Breakfast virgin. That's right, I did it. I stayed at a bed & breakfast Monday night while in Stratford. It was an experience and I still haven't decided if I liked it. It was called the Stone Maiden Inn, I don't think it was named after the lady that owned it. She was kind of nice. The place was sort of creepy with my room on the third floor. It sort of smelled like an old lady. What was weird about my stay was that you needed to take a tour. She showed you the parlour (they have parlours in these places and not family rooms). It had a TV, and a Mac (to check my email). I passed on the Mac, don't understand why they would make a computer that only has a one button mouse. Christ my mouse on my PC has 5 buttons and I don't think its enough. I will get back to my stay at the B&B in a bit, I want to take you around town.

Apparently, they put the town away around 6:00pm. Pretty much everything was closed. My host got me a reservation at a restaurant named - Foster's Inn. I had a wonderful steak dinner with a hearty shiraz.

Back at the B&B, my host suggested that I watch TV in the parlour, but I didn't feel comfortable with that, so I stayed in my room and watched a movie on my computer. I was also a little concerned when I went to the bathroom and looked up and a crow was staring at me through the skylight.

What a horrible sleep, I think it was because my bed was not aligned properly to protect me from mauraders. But the breakfast made up for it. My host made absolutely spectacular pancakes. Blueberry and chocolate chip pancakes, bacon, chocolate dipped strawberries, grapes and pineapple slices. I also had orange juice and coffee. My host had a newspaper and a couple of bottles of water to go. Very nice.

I guess I had a nice stay.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Potholes

This self imposed deadline thing sucks. I tweeted late last week that I was going to have an article written and posted for Sunday. That never happened. I, on the other hand, was spent and didn't get my article written. I wrote down some notes since I seemed to be experiencing higher than normal Alzheimer's activity the last few days. But alas, I never had the time to write it. I should say I didn't have the energy to write it, I only had the energy to slaughter crap in Eastern Plaguelands.

Here we go...

Daughter's Trip

It was chaos around the homestead, but when it was all said and done, our daughter was off on her trip to Washington DC. She managed to update her Facebook status with my wife's iTouch we had her take. She said it was "awesome" so far. We will have to see if she has the same sentiment later this week after getting up at 5:00am every day in order to keep to her itinerary.

The most humorous part for me in getting her ready was my comment on Saturday about needing her underwear so we can sew her name in them. The "look" was priceless.

Earthquake in Japan

I am mentally devastated by this earthquake in Japan. My heart truly goes out to these people and their country. What bothers me is that my country is taking the, "wait and see approach". They said they are more than willing to send equipment etc, but they want the Japanese government to ask for it. How about giving them a call and saying, "our stuff is on the way, where do you want it?" Sort of like the Libya thing. Most of our Canadian citizens got out with the help of other countries so when the Canadian plane showed up (about a week or two late) it left empty. They seem to let the windows of opportunity close due to their inability to make decisions.

Have you seen the photos? I sit there slack jawed at the devestation. However; I find myself truly astonished when it comes to their roads. Several of the photos I have seen, have these rural roads being looked at by guys in white lab coats and hard hats. They appear to be measuring the shift in the earth's crust, in some of the photos the road seems to have dropped/risen by 6' in some cases. Amazing. But have you looked closer at the photos? No potholes. Other than the damage done by the earthquake, these roads do not have potholes. The area where the earthquake occured is slightly north of where I live, so similar winter feeze/thaw conditions should be prevalent. Yet their rural roads have no potholes, there are roads in the middle of our town that look like they took the brunt of an artillery barrage.

Toast and Peanut Butter

I found myself making some toast with peanut butter on it a few days ago, instantly I flashed back to when my mom made it for me when I was a kid for breakfast. Interestly, I began to make it the same way she made it for me - make toast, spread peanut butter, sprinkle some sugar on top. That was how she did it. She explained to me that the sugar was used to make the peanut butter gritty enough so that if some got stuck to the roof of my mouth, my tongue would have something to "grab" on to. To avoid cramming a finger into my mouth to scrap it.

Hmmm, I think it was a ploy to make me hyper in order to get me medicated at school. Isn't that the typical modus operandi of schools these days? They see a hyper kid, BAMM!, kid needs medication. Wait, back then there was no such thing as ADD, ADHD, peanut butter allergies; back then teachers did their jobs and parents - if the student did have issues took them home at lunch. These days it's medicate the hyper or punish the rest of the school population if a single student is allergic to PB&J sandwiches.

I blame all these issues on teachers just wanting to collect a pay cheque, parents that don't want to parent, and the perservatives in Twinkie cream.

Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

I hate them, mainly because I hate cheese, but here is the problem - is it "Grilled - Cheese Sandwiches" or is it "Grilled Cheese - Sandwiches". The "-" was placed in the phrase to denote where the pause would be.

Let's review the second phrase first. Grilled Cheese - Sandwiches. It wouldn't work. If you threw a piece of cheese on a grill it would ooze through the rack and onto the charcoal. This brings us to the first way to pronounce it. Grilled - Cheese Sandwiches. To me this makes sense, you are taking a cheese sandwich and grilling it. However; most people "grill" their cheese sandwiches in a frying pan. Therefore; it isn't a Grilled - Cheese Sandwich anymore, it is a Fried - Cheese Sandwich.

Ear Hair

I was watching TV the other day and there seemed to be a high proportion of commercials dedicated to colouring or tinting your hair or putting on mascara to accentuate your eyes. Here's a thought, Ear Hair mascara for guys. Granted it would be accentuating their ears so it might not be a good thing.

Thinking about "mascara" - did it come from the latin "mass-us scaring-is"? Another, makes you go "hmmm" moment.

WOW Stuff

Finally, completed the journey of getting my original 14 - 80's to level 85. Now begins the second part of the journey, the leveling of the worgen and goblin, as well as, the professions. I must say, leveling is pretty easy, I almost got a level on one of my toons just doing the cooking and fishing dailies.

Enjoy the week, spring is coming.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

The 2 4

Yes it has been a while since my last post. It's been busy with work and home life. To be honest some of the things that have happened since my last blog were just not blog worthy. But today I have a couple of items that I think will make you smile.

First off, does anyone other than me get pyjamas from their moms at Christmas time? Well my mom got me a pair of fleece pyjama pants. Just the pants, I am sure if there was a matching top it would be either a fashion police violation, or you would simply spontaneously combust while sleeping. Any way - I noticed that these pants are official Pillsbury Fanware. Yes, I am wearing pyjama pants with Pillsbury doughboys all over them. /facepalm

My second item was a text I got late this past Friday night. It was from my buddy's (I will call him Bob) girlfriend. You see "Bob" is Canadian and he was transferred to the USA for his work and has moved on from there. But from time to time "Bob" gets into these predicaments where he has to explain something Canadian. In this case the text was a question regarding May 2 4.

I explained to her that May 2 4 was usually around the third weekend in May when all loyalist Canadians celebrate the queens birthday. Or what really happens, we have a long weekend and BBQ, totally oblivious to the fact that the queen had a birthday all together. Usually during this weekend there is the consumption of a 2 4 as well.

Her next text was, "What is a 2 4?" Well a 2 4 in Canada is a 24 bottle case of beer. We shorten it to a 2 4.

"But why a 2 4?" Now I am not sure what the standard size case of beer is in the USA, but if you have a 24 bottle size, isn't it just easier to say - 2 4? Maybe we are just better at short forms than they are.

The reason we predominantly have the 2 4 in Canada, however; is that our beer cases have been scientifically designed to maximize the stacking of cases on our dog sleds.

I got the text, "Thanks".


WOW Stuff

"Cataclysm instances are hard!!" You may remember the rant Blizzards' Ghostcrawler had regarding all the QQ'ing over instances. Well, I usually take the time when I do instances to go through them a couple of times on my DPS toons, then graduate to running them with my healers, then once I have some gear saved up I will run them, usually in regular mode, on my tanks. This gives me ample opportunity to learn the instances from all perspectives.

Today however, I went into a regular instance (Stonecore) and all of the toons were level 83 except the tank, he/she was level 85. I was on my level 83 warlock. We wiped on the first pull of trash 3 times. Now there was the, "I wasn't ready excuse." from a few people. The second time it was, "My mom was talking to me." But the third wipe was attributed to the fact the tank just didn't know what he was doing.

Now you are thinking - did a dps'rs pull aggro? No, I wait at least a 2 count and he was well out front according to Omen. Our dps wasn't split - at least mine wasn't, I use a macro to assist the tank. Oh wait, that's it. He kept grabbing 3 groups at a time because he thought that just because he was an 85 in a level 83ish instance he was invincible. I guess he couldn't handle getting smacked in the face by 12 mobs all at once.

Felt sorry for the healer, because according to the tank, it was all his fault, just as the tank quit group. Ugh.

Have a good week.