Saturday, November 12, 2005

Hags got game

I was staying at the Sacramento Sheraton this past week, and who walks onto the elevator but Detroit Pistons center Rasheed Wallace. He is one tall dude, but I couldn't help but notice that 1) he looks like he's 50 years old and 2) he's very skinny. He looked so frail, I almost posted up on him right there. The ole' lefty sky hook...he wouldn't know what hit him. This got me thinking a little bit though: would someone who was 6'2" 230lbs be able to whup a guy who's 7' 230lbs (230 soaking wet, BTW)? Ya know, call me crazy, but I think I could take him!!! Sure, he has the reach, but he's top heavy and I have a better center of gravity (at least I should, it's 8" closer to the ground). Setting would be important: Basketball court, he wins...local bar, I win (after buying him large quantities of hard liquor...all's fair). Of course, his stamina is off the charts....that's probably my downfall right there. I'd have to end it quickly...I think I'd shoot the knee, and go for the takedown right away. Then it'd be ground and pound from there.

Ok, no more Spike TV for the Hag, I've been watching WAY too much Ultimate Fighter lately.

Hag's Hollywood Gossip

One of my wife's best friends has very close connections in the entertainment industry. Word on the street is that KH is not really pregnant with TC's baby. She's wearing a prosthetic stomach, and she'll never have the baby (sounds like an impossible mission to me). Also, JT is bi-sexual (no surprise this rumor's stayin' alive). It's so entertaining to hear my wife talk about this bullshit, because it's almost as if she's personally involved in the relationships. However, I can't help but think that if Hollywood can coverup stories like this, than they'd have absolutely no problem squashing a bug like me. In case of my sudden disappearance, I want to settle up right now:

1)My brother can have my baseball card collection. "15 Carlos Quintana rookie cards!!!!...I'm rich, I tells ya, RICH!!!".
2)Ball can have my Blackberry AND my's about time he got a cell phone from this century.
3)Harding can have my Hemmingway's coaster from college...yes, I still have it.
4)My wife and daughter can have everything else...
5)Boys...Avenge me...AVENGE ME!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Friday, November 11, 2005

Argle Bargle

I recently started working with a guy, "T", who mumbles when he speaks. I can only pick up 20% of what he actually brain filters out 60% of the mumbling, and uses some sort of fuzzy logic to piece together whats left over. And it's not so much "mumbling", as it's more "low-talking", combined with "fast talking", combined with a "wicked-pissah" Boston accent. I'm not kidding...he's probably the most incoherent person that I've ever spoken with. My question is: How does someone like this get hired?? Is there an affirmative action clause for the perpetually marble-mouth'd?? Did he slip through the cracks?

At first, I thought it was me...I thought "Maybe I've finally done it...the cumulation of a 30-year lifetime of utter debauchery has blown out my eardrums!!!!". Could it be that the "Ghost of Christmas' Past" had come back with a vengeance, and wrought havoc upon my cochleas?? No, this was not the case...I slyly confirmed with another co-worker that "T" is difficult to comprehend:

The Hag: Hey, um...did you catch what "T" just said?
Co-Worker: Only a little bit.
The Hag: I can't understand a friggin' word that guy says.
Co-Worker: Yeah, me neither. I try not to talk talk too much to him.
The Hag: What's his deal?!?! He's worse than Mayor Menino. Let's go grab a taco...

With taco consumed, I began to formulate an answer (Mexican food clears the mind): The theorized answer is somewhat complicated, involving office politics and human interaction, but let's start with an example of the types of conversations that I've personally had with "T":

"T": Argle Bargle Biffle Baffle Pissah Blaffle XYZ.
The Hag: Huh? Please repeat what you said.
"T" (rolls eyes, lowers voice): I said that the technology used in this client's case was XYZ.
The Hag: Oh, I see.

The answer is that "T" only mumbles to newer employees. He does this so he can PURPOSELY repeat himself in front of other workers and managers, in order to make it seem as though his "nugget of information" was SO advanced that he needed to slow down and explain it to his lowly peers. He's mumbling ON PURPOSE, thus causing him to repeat his statements!!! In doing so, he's trying to build himself up at the expense of others. This answer explains how he got through the interview process, made it past HR, and landed smack-dab in my workplace. Very calculating...very conniving. That's why, one of these days, I'll send a company wide email which will fully exploit his tactics. "T" must be stopped...clear diction and pronunciation will once again RULE THE OFFICE!!!

Or I'll just quit...whichever comes first.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Lesson Learned in Vegas, Oct 05'

Note to self: After a Vegas-trip, avoid the following for 6 months:
(List created as an infusion of ideas from Harding and I)

Gambling on sports
Betting anything on Akron
Drinking beer
Drinking vodka
Drinking Bacardi and Coke
Drinking frozen whatever drinks
Getting less than 10 hours of sleep a night
Smoking 2 or more packs of cigarettes a day
Being around smoking
24 hour diners
Harding's sister & friends
People that like to "Blow it Up" (BOOM)
Asian dealers
3 Card Poker
Pai Gow
Let it Ride
Slot machines with diamonds, sevens, bells, Jamaicans, etc.
ATM machines
Any other items that cost money
Diana the Dealer
Harding's 4 Star Lock
Any drink longer than 2 feet long (i.e. gigantic well drinks)
13.99 Prime Ribs
1.99 Hot Dogs
Hash (still burping that shit up)
ANY Outdoor Bar
Hag's "They owe us this time" feeling
Quarters that look like dimes
8:00am flights
Slow walks up to Venetian
4 of a Kind in Pai Gow
11:30pm onion rings
Harding hitting the wall (actually, this was kinda funny...see story below)
Hitting on 12
Hitting on 13
Hitting on 14
Hitting on 15
Hitting on 16
Staying on 12
Staying on 13
Staying on 14
Staying on 15
Staying on 16
Pressing up that Yo bet
Playing the field

Harding hitting the wall: Harding has an un-ending well of energy. Many people, on many occasions, have said "How the hell does he keep going??". For instance: He can drink ALL DAY LONG, which I can do, but then he can DO IT THE NEXT DAY AS WELL....which I've been known to do every now and then, but then he can DO IT THE NEXT DAY, TOO. You see, he's a machine. Well, we took a Friday-Monday trip to Vegas in Oct 05', and I can officially say that I've seen him hit the wall. He'd gone 3 days straight of getting up at 7am, drinking and gambling, and going to bed at 3-4am. Me? Nah, I was in bed at 10-11 each night...I'm a wuss, yes. So on the last night, we decided around 10pm to hit Victoria's Diner at Barbury Coast for a quick 13.99 prime rib (which, btw, was Fin'-A good). They seated us, and as we're sitting there, another couple is seated next to us, and the old guy actually says "What, are these guys wearing their pajamas??" (meaning, "Have these guys been up all night?"). Anyway, so I'm sitting there enjoying my steak, when I look over at Harding, and his eyes are pretty much shut. He had hit the wall. He drops his fork, and actually says "That's it....I'm done....I need to go up to the can stay if you want....but I'm done". Well, I nearly shit myself with laughter. The best image that I could find that resembles the way Harding looked that night is as follows:

Things I'd Never Admit at Work

I've worked at technology companies for quite awhile, and if there's one thing that I've learned, it's that image is everything. I truly believe that if you want to be successful in technology, you need to project an image bourne of confidence and professionalism. Consequently, there are certain character traits and personal historical events that need to be surpressed whilst in the workplace in order to maintain said image. You basically want your co-workers to believe that your farts don't stink, OK?

Anyway, there I things that I've done in the past, and things that I love in this world that I would never admit to any of my co-workers. Some of these items are admittedly trivial (yeah, no shit you wouldn't tell anyone that) and some might be questioned as to why they are on the list...I can't explain a lot of the why, I just know myself well enough to admit that I would never mention anything on this list to a co-worker:
  1. I love reality TV. I'll take an all-day "Ultimate Fighter" marathon over half an hour of "Sqauwk Box" anyday.
  2. I once drank that "left-over" glass on the bar (you know, the one that the bartender uses to drain out the line) for a $20 bet.
  3. I love AC/DC. Yes, Angus Young&Brian Johnson can F'in rock, OK? Anyone who thinks differently is no friend of mine. In fact, anyone who thinks differently is my sworn enemy.
  4. Back when I was in college, I sold fake backstage passes to a stoner at a concert. It was Phish, and I needed the get stoned.
  5. I use at least 10 times a day. Too many big words floatin' around.
  6. I once drank 3/4 of a 1.75 liter of Jim Beam in 45 minutes. Mayhem ensued. Hard alcohol makes me loopy.
  7. When I worked from home, I sat in on conference calls.....naked. Shower, then call, then get happens.
  8. I hate my job, but the money is good. Friggin' golden handcuffs.
  9. I want to quit technology altogether, and start a bar/wing/breakfast joint. Who wouldn't?
  10. I've been in a a few fist fights in my day...once with a co-worker. It's not that I've actually started a lot of fights, it's just that I'm always with the guy that starts them.
  11. I have an engineering degree, but I am probably the absolute worst at doing math in my head. I'm calculator dependant.
  12. I've read all the Harry Potter books. Yeah, that's right, punk...I did it. You wanna say something about it?
  13. My fart DO stink....BAD. Sometimes, my dog leaves the room when I fart. Yes, a creature that would happily eat shit would rather not smell my farts!

I'm sure there are plenty others (and I'll try to update), but I'll keep it at that for now. The weird thing is, if I don't work with you, I'll happily tell you these things, or you'll find out from my friends. I don't care...whatever.

It's driving me nuts...

My job as a Sales Engineer takes me to some pretty cool places...San Fran, Chicago, Portland, Seattle, New York, Hawaii, to name a few. I had the recent pleasure to fly out to Sacramento the other day on a quick business trip, and it left me wanting more......more alcohol to erase the memory of ever having been there (talk about boring...). Yes, Sacramento is like Cleveland without the "pizzazz". In any case, a very unsettling thought occurred to me on the flight back: those damn "peanut allergic people" are ruining it for everyone else.

Am I right, or what? Most national carriers have banned nuts on all flights, which I know is not a recent change, but God-dammit, I love nuts. Peanuts, pistaccios, cashews, walnuts, brazilian nuts, ...that's right, I'm a friggin' card carrying member of the "I Can Eat Nuts and My Neck Won't Swell Up and Cause Respiratory Failure" club. And not only do they not serve nuts, they don't serve anything made from nuts, anything mixed with nuts, or anything that may have co-mingled with nuts prior to packaging. I ordered a "snackpack" on the flight back from CA, and it contained cookies, gummie bears, crackers, and a little tub of sun-flower seed butter? SUN FLOWER SEED BUTTER!??!??!? Who are these people that can eat this shit, but can't eat peanut butter?? AND WHY ARE WE CATERING TO THESE PICKY LITTLE BASTARDS?????

And it's gone much further than the aforementioned aerial quarantines: I can't get a brownie w/nuts at a birthday party anymore because everyone's afraid to be the "person who brought the dessert with nuts". I can't even make and bring the food that I enjoy for fear of reprisal. It's not only that children can't order PB&J sandwiches at their local school cafeteria; they can't even BRING them in their lunchboxes for fear of interacting with a child that IS allergic!! Talk about getting picked on at recess, huh?? But do you know what nut-related recall annoys me the most? McDonalds doesn't pre-nut your sundae anymore. Oh yeah, they'll give you the single-serving packet of nuts, which you'll then need to open and sprinkle onto your own sundae. Have you ever tried "sprinkling" ANYTHING while driving?? Let's put it this way, unless you're Mario Andretti, 9 times out of 10 you'll be sprinkling those nuts onto your own nuts, which I've personally done more times than I'd like to admit.

Isn't this a little bit of overkill?? If you're allergic to something, does everyone else need to suffer? Is it fair to tax the many for the faults of a few? If I were allergic, the warning on the label would be enough for me. I can read, and I'm somewhat partial to breathing, so I'm pretty sure that the 10 seconds of reading required to discern whether a certain food contains (or comes in contact with) nuts wouldn't be too much to ask. Yes, it's true, there are people in the world who are so sensitive that they can't even come in contact with specific types of nuts...they're called bubble-people. They shouldn't be allowed on commercial flights anyways due to the in-flight changes in atmospheric pressure.

Look, I feel bad for the people that can't eat nuts...I really do...they taste really fucking good, alright? But do I have to be punished because God and Darwin have deemed these people unfit to consume indehiscent, hard-shelled, one-loculated, one-seeded fruit?? I think nut.