Counter Thingy that Counts Crap

Thursday, September 18, 2008

fee fi fo fum


Ugh. Granted, this is after living out of hotels and eating out every meal with a corporate card for the past 3 weeks, so I was honestly expecting worse.

Back on the wagon next week.

Friday, September 05, 2008


What sucks: getting your first check and realizing how much of your raise is going towards health insurance premiums and other such BS, then doing the math and realizing what your 'real' raise is.


Coldplay still sucks.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

weekend update: delayed version

Friday: Drove down from BMI in the morning. Worked at the STL office all day. It was weird. Went home... Ate...somewhere. Uh... Seriously. Don't remember. Wow. Maybe we just stayed in. I seriously don't remember. Weird.

Saturday: Helped Davies move into their new house, it was awesome and quick. Done by noon I think. Went home, mowed, worked on the yard, etc. Met up with Davies at BW3 for the Illini suckfest... er.. game. Split at halftime, and went back to casa de Davie for cheaper beer. After the suckfest, we headed back to Cville, closed down Johnny's cuz we're cool like that. I'm apparently their bouncer.

Sunday: Woke up at like 11. Some guy came by at 1 to look at the house, doubt he'll buy. Hung out, had some gyro love at Fazzi's. Some other shit went down, I think. Oh, watched Harold & Kumar, crashed early.

Monday: Woke up at some point, made breakfast. Spent most of the day compiling apartment list for denver, and hacking up basement doors to work properly. Cookout @ Mike & Elise's. Good shit.

Leaving for BMI again tonight. Come back Friday afternoon. Fly out to Denver Saturday or Sunday or something. Ellen comes back that Wednesday, I'll stay till Saturday. Or sunday. I should probably look at itineraries. Lot of i's in that word.

Monday, August 18, 2008

asfasdiy23o87243ajsdf + food

Friday: Drove up to Loda. Stopped for Wendy's en route. Had pizza and beer upon arrival. Hung out with Ward fam, fell asleep.

Saturday: Woke up, hung out, went over to my Grandma's, had Just Hamburgers. visited Ellen' grandma for a bit. I split and visited mom. Went back to Wards for a little more fam time and cookout. Hit the road at 8. Home by 11. Bed.

Sunday: Woke up, had McD's for breakfast, Home Depot, massive house repairs. So much. Taco Bell. More repairs. BW3, hot tub, sleep.

Buy my house.

Buy my truck.

Monday, August 11, 2008

death becomes him

Friday: Came home, went into the city to negotiate trades and shit. Attempted to get a hold of Ellen to sign papers, but happy hour loudness prevailed. Went home, she and her friend from work followed later. Attempted to show her Cville love, but it was apparently bizzarro night, and failed horribly. Passed out around 1.

Saturday: Woke up, went back into the city, bought this blue thing. It's awesome. Went back, hit HD, bought supplies, went home, finished deck repairs, stained both decks. Got showered, hit Mexican with Davies since Aaron and his buddy were in town. Went back to the house to pregame, but Rock Band, 3 Man, and Beer Pong prevailed, so we never left. Fell asleep around 2 or 3.

Sunday: Woke up at like noon, hit BW3. Hit Ultimate Electronics for stereo shit, mall for new sunglasses, kohls for some shorts. HD again, 15 bags of mulch and 5 bushes for the flowerbeds around the garage. Rented a tiller, fun toy. Beat the flowerbed into submission, looks awesome. Returned tiller, had food, went over to lowns to give them bounties of firewood and help him move furniture. Went home, hit the jacuzzi, watched Venture brothers, (fucking awesome season) and passed out hard around 10:30.

I'm still sore. And tired. a;lskfjasd.

Monday, August 04, 2008

weekend in as few words as possible

Friday: Worked, drove, sweated, drank, slept
Saturday: Woke, floated/drank, sweated, gave up, left, slept
Sunday: Panera, drank, Rock Band, Hacienda, drank, airport, slept

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

viva the midwest

More specifically, Granite City.

Scene: Walking into a gas station

dude: "Go Nazis!"
dude: "White power, man"
me: .. "nah, man."

I've been sporting the bald look for like 2+ years now, and this is the first time someone's tried to identify with me as a white supremacist of some sort. Knowing the type of person I was dealing with, I decided against engaging the dude any further, since I'd probably get my ass kicked or really confuse the guy.

Monday, July 28, 2008


From vacation, that is.

Friday: Played some Rockband, met up with Eric, hit Esperanza for the mexi-love, then the Friday's/Johnny's routine, with a smattering of "new" bar, 5th Quarter. Neat. Plowedness ensued. Jed bought pizza for the bar.

Saturday: Slept in stupid-late. Ellen made French toast. Went to Carlyle Lake. Came back, took shower, met up with Rob and Eric @ Hooters, then did some mosquito-infested night golf at the Par3 course. Wound up switching over to best ball by the 4th hole, and plowed through 18 with the quickness. Home and in bed by 11:30.

Sunday: Slept in kinda stupid-late. After much debate and lolly-gagging (hello from the 40s), we decided to start on the basement redeux in earnest. Home Depot, etc. LOTS of concrete patching, general cleaning and purging from the hellhole took place. Painting will be eventually. Not sure if the project is worthwile, but it needs to be done, and it'll only happen once, so whatever. Long-overdue BW3, and then back to the house to watch 21.

I still hate Coldplay.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Denver Trip

I hate coming home from vacation. Went to Denver for a week with Ellen/Chris/Cari. Went with intent of catching the Foo show at Red Rocks Tuesday (which was cancelled), but still had a frickin' blast.

Tuesday: Arrived, set up shop in a completely bitchin condo downtown, with a full HD DirecTV setup, balcony, and awesome views. Rooftop pool, etc. Hit Benny's Cantina for some bomb-ass Mexican, and strong drink. Attempted to find a Starbucks that was open after 9pm, failed horribly.

Wednesday: Hit 16th Street Mall (tourist trap) for food and pool accoutrements, chilled at the rooftop pool for a while, ate, and hit the road. Hit Castle Rock so the girls could rape the outlet mall. Kept going south, went to Garden of the Gods outside of Colo Spgs. Climbed on a bunch of shit, had a little wine/cheese picnic. Awesome.

Thursday: Went back down south again to CaƱon City, did some whitewater rafting under the Royal Gorge Bridge. Never done that before, and my buddy convinced us to do a 3/4 run. Freaking AWESOME. Loved it. Our guide was incredible, and the views were amazing. Drove back, got cleaned up, did a fondue dinner, then hit Lodo for some boozing. Met up with Eric, who we hadn't seen since high school. Drank till about 3 or 4. I passed out on a dresser.

Friday: Slept in, more chilling poolside. Had Beau Jo's for lunch. Awesome. Took a drive up to Lookout Mountain and Buffalo Bill's Grave. Cool drive, awesome views as always, plus decently close to the city. Our rental Ford Edge, while really damn good looking in Orange with grey 18"s, didn't fare well at altitude with the small engine in it. Spent a lot of time floored and not going very fast. Went back, got ready, took a cab over to one of my favorite bars/clubs ever, The Church. Wives didn't really appreciate it, especially since neither were big electronic fans. They've upgraded a lot in there since the last time I was there, the sound system was perfect, the vibe was incredible, and it was just freaking cool. Drank overpriced drinks until about 2, split, drank more at the house.

Saturday: Got up, hit Cherry Creek lake for some jetskiing. Hit the Rockies/Pirates game at 6, awesome game, Rockies clobbered. Hit McCormick's for horrible service but awesome seafood afterwards. Went to Wynkoop Brewery for some pool after that, more wandering and drinking. Wound up taking the women to La Boheme, that was semi-entertaining.

Sunday: Got up, hit the pool again, got ready and went over to Commerce City for the Mile High Music Festival. An amazing organizational clusterfuck. Got in to catch the end of Flogging Molly's set. Caught Flobots, The Roots, Black Crowes, and then finally Dave Matthews. Awesome shows all around. Split a bit early to beat the crowds.

Monday: Hit Angelo's Pizzeria for some awesome pie, and then fought traffic to the airport. Flew back into a wall of humidity. Blarg. Fvck the midwest. Slept late, slept on the flight in, so I slept 0 last night.

Going out just solidified my need to get bloody hell out of the Midwest by any means necessary, and ASAP. Forgot how much I missed the people on the whole, the entire vibe of the city is just incredible, not to mention the weather most of the year, and all the things to do.

Some pics/vids here. Waiting for the waterproof cam to be developed, and C&C have a ton of pics as well.

Monday, July 14, 2008


Friday - Drove over to Lake Mattoon after work. Got caught in a monsoon from hell. Had to pull off the highway, which is the first time I've ever had to do that. Rain let up by the time I got there, drank a few beers, did the campfire thing. Bed early since everyone was dead from being on the water all day.

Saturday - Woke up, ate some awesome biscuits/gravy, waited out the rain till about 10 or so. Took the sailboat out for a bit, got back, swam, put Boris in the water, it was entertaining. Left, drove back to Collinsville, took shower, played xbox, went to comedy club with Heric and another couple, freaking hilarious. Went to Johnny's afterwards, drank a bit, wound up geting a Rumba lesson on the sidewalk. Strange. Home by 130a.

Sunday - Woke up hungover, made eggs. Watched TV, detailed Mustang, fixed AC on the truck, did other mechanical putzing. Drove around a bit since it was beautiful out. Mowed yard, re-graveled the patio around the jacuzzi, played Tiger Woods 08, lounged.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

the weigh-ay-eight is the hardest part

See what I did there?

210. Again, massive lack of trying, especially with an upcoming vacation. I must conquer these last 10. Maybe. :)

Monday, July 07, 2008

see title of blog

Long weekend. W00t.

Thursday (First Friday?): Had surprise party at the office which started at 3:30. Was dreading this, due to my mindset of the traditional office party, but was relieved to see the maintenance garage had a nice spread of booze and multiple beer coolers. Hung out with office people till about 5:30, and went home. Made Ellen drive into the city, due to beer. Went to Hacienda with the Davies, then to Lleywln's in WG for after-dinner drinks. Then back to Cville, for Fridays I think. Home by 123oa or so.

Friday (Second Friday?): Woke up kinda early, ate, laid around for a bit, worked on deck, made replacement table top for patio set. Neighbors had a BBQ, awesome chicken, Davies came over, neighbors put on insane fireworks display, complete with mortars and all sorts of illegal shit. Neighbor's dad had a police scanner, if that's any indication of the hardcore-ness. Had small bonfire and more beer afterwards.

Saturday (only Saturday): Woke up at some point, Ellen made some awesome pancakes and whatnot. I detailed the cars, she did laundry and shit. Went over to Davies for margaritas and food courtesy of Eric's parents. Went to Johnny's afterwards. Helen became the drunkest person of all time. Very hilarious. Got slapped. By Helen. Oddly, hilarious. She said i could slap her back since I was wearing a brown shit "It's OK, it's brown; I counted." Some huge/scary/awesome/deathmetal dude kept buying me shots of Soco & Lime. It was nuts. There was moonwalking. Some talk about Charlemane or something. Closed the bar, went home. Sleep by 4.

Sunday: Woke up entirely too early (10ish). Got ready, met Davies, went to O'fallon for BBQ goodness with Lowns/Lammles. Came home, hit Walamart, Blockbuster, took nap, watched Jumper. Kinda dissappointing they didn't do more with the story, but wasn't god-awful. Back to sleep at like 10 or something.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008


Here's a pic of the turtle Boris had, btw.

Monday, June 30, 2008


Friday: Ate some food, I think. Don't remember what. Oh, no we didn't, due to late-ass lunches. Bought shitty truck. Met up with Mike & Elise, headed into the city to look at high water, putzed around on the landing, and hit Lumiere where I promptly lost $20. Went back into town hit Friday's, drank a bit, saw a couple d-bag fights. Got to bed around 5.

Saturday: Woke up entirely too early. Went and got plates for said shitty truck, and insurance. Hit Home Depot for project goods, and Autozone for stuff for the fleet. Wound up falling asleep until like 3pm or something stupid. Woke up, met up with Davies for some BW3 action. Then mini-golf. Then Hurricanes/Johnny's for a bit. Home by 12:30, straight to bed.

Sunday: Woke up entirely too early (but actually early this time, stupid dog. Like 6am). Went back to bed. Let dog back in the house around 7:30. Went back to sleep. Woke up again at like 9, and started doing things. Saw the dog had something huge in his mouth at the back of the lot. Ignored it, went into the garage to start doing oil changes. Came back out, dog was on the deck with a huge fucking TURTLE in his mouth. Seriously. Where the hell did he find a turtle. It was pissed.

Took turtle from dog, set him down far away from the yard out by the cemetary. Went back to work on the car. Dog went out of the yard, retrieved turtle. It was pissed. Ellen put the turtle in the sink. I finished the car. Helen & Eric came over to hit Lake Carlyle. Executive decision was made to re-locate turtle.

Pakced cooler/turtle, and headed to the lake. Released turtle. Sat around, ate food, watched water, got rained on. Came back to C-ville, after detouring in Lebanon for too much ice cream. Watched No Country for Old Men (awesome), changed oil in Mustang, putzed with the truck. That's it.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

witty title relating to weight(ing)

207.5 today. The scale magically repaired itself somehow in the past week as well, which is cool.

I'm pretty much into a set 'quicky workout' routine, which for now is just focusing on the upper body, where I need the most help. Doing a circuit of flat bench, preacher curl, and tricep rows/extensions, then hopping over to the heavy bag for about 10-15 minutes, or longer if the day has been shitty. Amazing how much of a workout you get from punching a thing.

Monday, June 23, 2008


Friday: Drove up to CU after work, met up with Grice and Chris at Dos Reales, which I hadn't had in forever. Good. Went back over to Chris's, met up with Cari, had a few beers, waited for Jim to show up. Headed to Crane Alley in Urb, met up with Ryan, drank heavily. Went back to Chris' for more beer and 1000-year-old duck eggs (TJE upcoming this week). Drank more.

Saturday: Woke up late, got ready, rolled up to Chicago to do the Cub/Sox game at Wrigleyville Rooftops. AWESOME. Made sure we got our moneys worth. I had 8 beers, a steak, a burger, a dog, a brownie, and a rootbeer float. All-inclusive? More like all-dangerous. Also, they had salmon/chicken, but that seemed wrong.

After the game, we wandered around, saw some plastic drum corp, saw a dude get beat down by 6 mounted Chicago police officers, which was awesome. Went to Higgin's, some shitty bar, where we drank more. Walked over to Wishbone, where Rose was working, had more booze and revelry, awesome to see her. Walked back to the car. Got about 20' from the car (literally) when we got dragged into a game of flippy cup, and further shenanigans. Bowed out at some point, drove back south, with a detour in Gilman for Monical's. Got to Champaign, Jim vomitted, went back to Chris' house, and crashed hard.

Sunday: Woke up, got ready, went to Merry Ann's for semi-brunch. Went to the Illini course and smacked golf balls around for a couple hours, then headed south.


Wednesday, June 18, 2008

how we roll

I definitely installed a car stereo in Lori's car last night. This is normally an unremarkable feat, but is notable because:

a) the car was parked in front of Johnny's, where I'd just had 3-5 beers
b) it was like 9:30 at night
c) it took less than 2 minutes

So, in summation, I'm awesome to the point that I can install an Alpine in a Mustang parked in front of a bar, after drinking, in less than 5 minutes.

I have to admit that in order to beat this time record, I didn't set any presets or the clock, and the wiring was already in place from the attempted-to-be-stolen Alpine she had before, so it was pretty much a drop-in affair. I installed the DIN sleeve with a pocketknife. I'm just that hardcore.

up up down down left right left right

209.5 Scale is dead/dying, so I get to start over on a new one next week which should throw off my numbers nicely. Doh.

Monday, June 16, 2008

...and rocks.

Friday: Ran over to La Esperansa after work for strong Margarita and excellent burritos. Lori brought her car over for me to figure out why the stereo wasn't working after an attempted smash n' grab. I figured out why they just left it in there. Fought with the damn radio for the better part of a half hour to get it out in order to check the wiring, turns out they fried the radio prying on it. Drank after that, shot some darts, then gave up on staying away from the bars, and headed to Fireside, where the people watching was first-rate. Wound up chatting up some off-duty drunk cops at closing who tried to get us to go to some shit-hole bar in Troy.

-Cop, holding up his phone with a picture of a cop car on it: "This right here is what gets me out of DUIs"
-Ellen: "Wait. Can I just take a picture of a cop car too?"

It was seriously like we were living in Super Troopers.

Fireside closed, we headed up to Johnny's, Doug showed up, and we got some samples of their new booze. They have absinthe now, which shall be drank at some point. Got home around 3.

Saturday: Alarm went off at 7:30, I stabbed the day. Ellen got baked egg souffles from Panera. Dump truck with 15 tons of gravel for the driveway showed up promptly at 8am. Due to damn trees getting in the way, he wasn't able to dump the load down the length of the driveway. That was the beginning of our demise. Spent the next 3 hours or so breaking backs with the neighbors relocating piles of gravel and spreading things out. Looks much better now than it did, at least. Hopefully the mud puddles are gone forever.

Wrapped up fully around noon, got Taco Bell, took much-needed all-day nap. Woke up around 4, hit the store for side items for cook out with the neighbors. Had Nathan's dogs, and some wicked fried taters and corn. Watched teh dog chase the neighbors kids, and vice versa.

Parent: "Don't say 'dummy'"
Kid: "Can I say 'bean'?"

-dies in the corner laughing-

Dragged our tired asses downtown for the Singers & Songwriters music festival around 10. Heart wasn't really into drinking, but I wanted to check out the scene. Wasn't much of one. Saw a couple decent bands, though, and got to pay $5 to legally roam Main Street with a drink in my hand (magical bracelet). Went home around 11:30. In bed by midnight.

Sunday: Got some apparent much-needed sleep. Till 11. Ellen made eggs/biscuits. Spent the day not walking outside to enjoy the awesome day. No energy. Did laundry, gathered like 6 bags of crap for Goodwill, watched Semi Pro, which was better than I was expecting. Watched $1M Password (viva Betty White), and Ice Road Truckers. Passed out hard. Rough day.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

why, hello wall

211.0. Grr. I started lifting Monday. I tried lifting again wednesday, and physically couldn't. Shoulda started out a little slower I guess. May have to suck it up and introduce cardio as well. Not looking forward to that.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

somethin bout a weekend

Work is definitely getting in the way of my blogging. That, and having a monitor that faces a door, and sharing an office. Anyway.

Friday: Um... Oh, met up with Mike & Elise for 'meh' mexican at Loredo in Belleville. This marks the point where we're apparently no longer just 'bar' friends, but friends who eat at Mexican places as well. Cool. Mike went home due to allergies, we went out to Fridays, where we ran into Matt & Jodi, so there was much hanging out. I bailed on the girls at one point to see people at Johnny's because I'm a dork like that.

Saturday: Slept till like 11 or something. Had aspirations of doing things, I don't think I actually did, though. Don't really remember what we did, actually. Shopped? Maybe. I dunno. Went to the Funny Bone with helen/eric, which was good times. Went to Johnny's afterwards until much later. Awesomeness.

Sunday: Slept till like 11 or something. Had aspirations of doing things. Ellen actually did stuff. I was overcome with sinus bullshit. Got movies, watched one (Before the Devil Knows Your Dead - awesome). Had Steak n' Shake. Think that's it. Not sure. Oh, helped Liz out with tornado crisis. Because the first thing you should do in the event of a tornado is call someone 500 miles away. :)

This weekend is gravel weekend, finally. I've been wanting to get our driveway re-gravellelleed(?) since we moved in 3 years ago. It'll be nice to not have a mud pit anymore.

Friday, June 06, 2008

step on up

211.0. Not thrilled, but considering I've done the opposite of diet this week in an attempt to assimilate myself in a new corporate culture (taco tuesday, cake wednesday, chinese buffet yesterday), followed by multiple fast food outings (arby's, mcd's), and a BBQ last night, I'm OK with a light fluctuation.

Assuming my body cooperates, I'm going to actually start lifting again next week. We'll see.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

note to self

Note to self: Keep extra shirt in your car in case you're randomly called upon to install 10 network drops in an un-finished, un-air conditioned building addition when it's 90 degrees out.


Sunday, June 01, 2008


As of yesterday: 210.0. I figured the debauchery/food fest of Memorial Day weekend would have done me in, but apparently not. Awesome.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

2 things

1. Panera baked egg souffles are fucking awesome.

2. So is xkcd

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

he smells good... like a triangle

Friday: La Esperansa with Davies, gorged selves on awesome mex, like always. Hung out, had a few drinks, hit up Fridays and met up with Mike & Elise, the newbies. Hung out at Friday's until the under-22-douchebag crowd made it unbearable, then headed across the street to Johnny's. Davies left since they had to do a 20 mile bike thinger in carbondale Saturday. Mike & Elise's friend Holly met up, we all hung out for a while, then they all left, leaving Ellen and I hanging out, chatting up randoms and staff. Had a long Scotch discussion with 'Uncle Brian', who is a dead ringer for Smokey from the Big Lebowski, cool guy. Anyway, Ellen was plostered, we closed Johnny's, she puked.

Saturday: Slept until about 10 or so. Ellen woke me up with blueberry pancakes because she rocks. Hung out, watched Hart's War (very decent), took a nap until about 4. Got ready, headed into Clayton for anniversary dinner at Ruth's Chris Steakhouse. The nicest damn wait staff ever, I think we had no less than 5 seperate people come by at different times to check on us. Even the valet guys were awesome. Cruised around Clayton for a while after dinner, trying to figure out what to do, came up empty.

Headed downtown, hit Lumiere casino while we were dressed up. McCallen 18 was had at one of the little bars, so I was very happy. Had our after-dinner cocktail, then hit the floor. Wound up only spending $20 between us, but lost it all. They have video roullette now, which is addictive and awesome.

Lori texted me at some point looking for hang-out action, so we wound up meeting her at Johnny's, figured we'd have a couple and part ways. Ran into Jed, who was celebrating his 30th, and was the most drunk I've ever seen anyone, ever. It was funny. Was introduced to Tuaca, this Italian liqueur, which was really damn tasty. Highly recommended. Ran into some random guys wearing tuxes, who wound up being 3/8 of a wedding band. Couple of them were good friends with Doug (johnny's co-owner) and his wife Jennifer. Hung out with them for a while. Watched a massive fight (under-22-douchebags) break out across the street at Friday's, complete with metal-chair beat down. This was literally about 3' from where I'd parked my car (with the top down), so I went to go move my car across the street, and as soon as I pulled out of my spot, there were 4 Collinsville cop cars on the scene, which was fun to watch.

Johnny's closed down at 3, we were ushered into the rear of the bar to wait out closing, and hung out with Doug/Jennifer/Johnny/Lori/3/8 of the wedding band. Good times, except for when 1/8 of the wedding band tried to grab ellen's boob. Free beer though. Lori and a different 1/8 of the band had hit it off really well, which was cool because he was a nice dude, and looked/acted like Jim from The Office, so bonus points there.

Walked out of Johnny's around 5 or 5:15, into the first light of day, which is completely un-fun. Got invited to breakfast, but declined. Went home, passed out hard. Rock stars.

Sunday: Slept till about 10 or 11 (stupid dog). Hung out around the house, ordered pizza for lunch. Lounged around doing mostly nothing all day. Met up with Davies for BW3. We were originally going to go to Rib America for Johnny Lang and Night Ranger, but seemingly emminent death-storms dictated otherwise. Wound up back at Friday's, because we're bar rats. Think I had 2 drinks, wasn't terribly into it. Drafted up rough plans for parties, then decided to head back to the house after grabbing '30 Stones' for a game of Sink The Biz (Bismark), which Eric was talking about earlier.

Roughly 30 Stones later, I forced people to watch Sifl & Oly, then they left. We hit the sack shortly after, no clue what time it was.

Monday: Woke up around 11:15, grabbed some cold pizza and watched Price is Right. Ellen slept until 1:30. Lots of lounging around the house. Ellen watched far too many episodes of the thousand-baby-family-show on Discovery. Excellent birth control. Laundry was done at some point. Rock Band was... rocked. Website repaired. Jacuzzi action took place later on, which was relaxing, perfect night for it. Passed out on the couch.

Last week of work, and it's a short week. And my boss is apparently gone on Friday. I rule.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Shawty got low low low low

Despite my best derailment efforts in Paxton last weekend (grilling, Just Hamburgers, Wendys, DQ), morning weigh in was 209.5.


Tuesday, May 20, 2008

things that aren't fun

I was having a dream last night that some remote I was using would go "beep beep" after you spoke a command into it. Then, around 4am, Ellen woke me up to go investigate some random beeping which was driving the dog nuts. The beeping was exactly the same tone that his shock collar beeps as a pre-shock warning, so he was going apeshit thinking wherever he was, he was going to get shocked.

After much stumbling around, we found the alarm system we've never armed in the 3 years we've been in the house (mainly because it's fucking collinsville, but partially because we didn't know how) had an 'Alert' going off. I'm assuming either that meant the battery backup was dead/dying, or something was on fire. Making the grand assumption that doinking with the alarm system might set it off and fire up the huge siren mounted to the side of the house, I put my glasses on, stumbled into the basement, and unfogged my head enough to look at the wiring schematics, unhook the siren from the alarm system, unplug the battery, and trace back the AC wiring, and pull that. Alarm system is now completely off, nothing is on fire, and beyond a little pyschological damage to the dog and some nasty-ass farts from him being so nervous, no harm, no foul.

Monday, May 19, 2008

take this job and shove it, and chicken wraps

Friday: Took off early due to working 13 hours on Thursday. Had first interview for metal fab place job at 3. Was originally going to be with owner and boss, wound up being a 5-person panel. Interview was short, and they offered a tour of the place. Went up front to get safety glasses, and after waiting for someone for about 5 minutes, the office manager brought me back into the conference room, where the owner offered me the position. I rule. Start on the 2nd.

Went home, had a beer, waited on ellen to get home. Packed, rolled north to loda, after stopping for 2389 things, we made it there around 10 or so. Crashed hard. Had a chicken wrap from Wendy's on the way. Spicy. Excellent. I still lament our lack of Wendy's.

Saturday: Moved mom into house, took forever due to shitty packing. C&C were a massive help. Had Just Hamburgers, still incredible. Went to Loda afterwards, I wound up making kebobs for Ellen's parents, I did the best most incredible makeshift beef seasoning job ever, the sirloin was incredible for sirloin. Won massive amounts of brownie points with the father-in-law due to my meat-grilling abilities. Got showered, headed up to Urbana to repay Baslers with booze. Got back to Loda round 1. Crashed hard.

Sunday: Woke up, ate breakfast, went to Mom's to help with some more house stuff, hanging doors, assembling beds, programming garage doors. Went back to Loda for lunch with in-laws. Headed south. Stopped back at mom's again to drop off housewarming gifts. Went souther. Drove fast. Got back, went to DQ. Had chicken wrap. Wasn't incredible. Peanut Buster Parfait was, however. Watched Cloverfield. Good, liked the concept, ending sucked, I really wanted some sort of epilogue. Watched Lost, still awesome. Watched the Office, still awkward. Hilarious episode though. In bed by 9:30, crashed hard.

Resignation placed this morning. The next two weeks will be filled with tying up loose ends and massive amounts of documentation I've been putting off forever. Pudding sounds good.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

witty title referencing how much things weigh

212.0. Finally off the .5 bullcrap. Considering I spent all of last weekend eating and drinking (in-laws were up from AL), I think that's pretty decent. I did have a bout of food poisoning in there, which I thought would have lowered my numbers a little bit, but I did gorge Tuesday to compensate. Oh well.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

death becomes him

Friday: Took day off in anticipation of amy/scott arriving. Finished garage finally:

After starting with this:

Anyway. Yay. Ellen cleaned, I made a meat run in South County. Amy/scott showed up shortly after 2, and drinking commenced. Went to La Esperansa for lunch/dinner, awesome as always. Went home, drank more, eric came over, BB guns, drank more, bonfire, drank more, helen came over, drank more, davies left, jacuzzi, drank more, passed out around 3ish.

Saturday: Breakfast at McD's was procured. House was prepped for what wound up being a decent-sized BBQ outing. Much food was grilled, beer was drank, babies were licked (by the dog). Did get rained out, and had to move the party into awesome garage, no biggie. People split off at some point, drinking re-commenced with limited sucess. In bed semi-early. HUGE wind storm came through that night. Like insane, house-shaking shit. Shattered the glass on our 2 week old patio set. Weak. Limbs down all over. New jacuzzi cover was thankfully unaffected.

Sunday: Woke up at 3am with a case of what wound up being food poisoining of some sort.

The next 30 hours or so consisted of sleeping, then waking up every 3 hours or so for chocolate rain. It was horrible. Horrible. I kicked everyone out of the house at like 9p to go to Friday's, so they'd stop the pity parade and have some fun. I think they got back around 2a.

Monday: Took day off obviously. Scott/amy left around 11. I felt really good (comparitively), so I dove back into solid food, which in retrospect wasn't the best decision. Was actually fine all yesterday afternoon, but today I'm feeling pretty puny, but I'm at work, physically, anyway.

That's it. Short week now kinda, going to P-town Friday to move mom into her new house.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

16 tons, whadaya get

Morning weigh-in: 212.5. I'm still not sure why I only wind up weighing half-pounds. Hooray for standard-issue on-track weight-loss hypenated-word.

Still haven't started exercising yet (beyond garage remodeling every night, pics coming soon)

Monday, May 05, 2008


Also, today is Boris' birthday. He's 3. Awwww.

song lyrics

Got nothing witty today.

Friday: Ellen did happy "hour" with her work peoples. I putzed around the house, met up with Lori/Kelly/Shane at Friday's, then over to Johnny's, then out to Fireside. Then to some shithole in Granite City (shocker, I know). Ellen was on her way back at that point, and I wasn't about to try and talk her into where we were, so I left to go meet her at the house. Then we headed back up to Johnny's, where we hung out with Doug and his wife and Johnny until after close, while Ellen worked on what wound up being a $70 bottle of wine. Dammit.

Saturday: Woke up too early due to dog, made breakfast. Lounged around house the majority of the day. Ellen slept off allergy death. Met up with half-brother Tyler and his wife Angie @ Dave & Busters around 4ish, hoping to beat the rush. Turns out all the pool tables were shut down and converted to banquet tables for like 54 proms, which sucked. Ate some foods, hung out, had a few beers, played some games, pretty good time. Split ways around 10, went home, had a beer, caught up on DVR stuff.

Sunday: Made breakfast again (i'm on some sort of egg-loving streak), watched some TV. Did the consumer whore thing. Ellen bought a lot of underwares, then we headed to sears to see if they had my back-ordered weight bench in stock. They did, and when we went to check out, the guy told us we'd save an extra 10% if we came back at 6p for some VIP sale. So we 'returned' the bench we'd just bought, went to BW3 for the wing lovin, went and saw Iron Man (AWWWEESOME), grabbed Cold Stone (also aweomse), and got back to Sears at 5:59. Grabbed bench, headed home, tossed in basement, sanded the 2nd coat of mud on the garage walls, watched a little TV, ellen took some allergy meds and went to bed again. I stayed up and putzed around, played a little more Gran Turismo, bed around 11:30. Dog completely FLIPPED OUT at around 12:20, scaring the complete shit out of us. Every dog in the neighborhood was going nuts, I figured it was an earthquake coming, so I laid in bed awake for a while. Coincidentally, we had another (2.7 tiny) earthquake (which I didn't feel) at like 6:30 this morning.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008


Finally got the balls to step back on the scale after getting back on the dietary wagon.

214.5. w00t.

If you look at my 'weight' tags, I've reached my original target... for July 07. :(

200 by Xmas?

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

oh, also

Saturday marked the demise of my Rock Band drum pedal, which is pretty common for those about to rock (we salute you). Mummifying it with masking tape has rendered it usable still (snapped at the hinge). Luckily, there's a massive aftermarket for this shit.


in honor of what the majority of my posts are, I renamed this bitch.

Oh, speaking of:

Friday: Worked on the drywall in the garage, hung out with the dog. Ellen was out in mid-MO with Gretchen. Helen came over after some trivia night thing I bitched out on. Eric was in FL for his bro's graduation. We went out to Friday's and drank and people watched, good times. I managed to get her to close Friday's at 3am, which was a feat in and of itself.

Saturday: Woke up entirely too early feeling way too good. I attribute it to the Midol I took before bed since we were out of Ibuprofen. Putzed around the house most of the day, washed/waxed the car, cruised around b/c it was nice out. Met up with Helen for Steak n' Shake, then putzed around the house and drank a little, played Rock Band until Jake came over. Then the 3 of us took Jake on the standard collinsville bar circuit. Hurricane's poured it up like usual. Ran into one of Helen's customers at Johnny's, nice dude. Went over to Friday's S., where Jake immediately hooked up a number, talked shit about some whore, and got me in trouble with the girls large girl-cousin who stared me down until I 'stopped looking hard'. I told her I wasn't trying to look hard, and it was probably due to my shaved head, and that I was growing hair as fast as possible. The staring contest continued. I'm glad I was half-drunk for that.

Anyway, they had a band, it was cool. I think we closed it down again, time is kinda blurry. Wound up back at the house. I had a stogie, Jake puked in the toilet. Passed out.

Sunday: Woke up confused, with Ellen in the bed. Confused because it was 6am. Apparently they decided to just drive home instead of sleeping saturday. Dumb. Anyway, went back to bed, took jake out for breakfast at Spring Garden, he split, we hit wally world for grocs and other asundries. Spent way too much cash, but we had basically no food. Now we have miniature bananas, kiwis, plums, veggies, and other random shit. Never shop hungover.
Took a 4-5 hour nap mid afternoon, caught up on DVR shit, ellen was back in bed by 8, I wound up staying up till 11.

Monday, April 21, 2008

that monday shiz

Friday: Laid low. Met up with the Davies for La Esperansa, the new mexican joint that used to be some other mexican joint of awesome love, but is now something else. But it's awesome still. Went home, chilled, RockBanded for a while, they split early-ish. Went to bed halfway early.

Saturday: Woke up, putzed around the house all morning, met up with Steve & Lori in Staunton, IL to start our "redneck bar crawl" around 2pm. Started off with lunch in Staunton. Afterwards, our first stop was Mr. T's Tavern & Package Liquor:

Stag was on tap, so I had one. First round (for 4 people): $6.00. Awesome. And dangerous.

After we finished our beers, we walked the half-paved streets of Staunton looking for another open bar, to no avail. We then made our way to "The Log Cabin Bar". I don't have any pictures of it for some reason, but it's a log cabin. There, I moved on to Old Millewauke Light (on tap) and started chatting up an old regular named "Voogie" or something. Real nice guy, story was that he was a high-end car broker in LA before retiring back to IL. Lots of stories of partying with Eddie Van Halen and Don Henley. Pretty surreal. He bought the bar a round. I had another Stag.

Then it was on to Benld (aka "I'd like to buy a vowel, pronounced Ben-Eld"), for Capone's bar-something-or-other. It was almost 4 by then. We may have already been in Benld at the log cabin joint. Not sure. At any rate, there was some VERY loud Annie Lennox playing, and a 'rough' crowd. (Rough for Annie Lennox fans at least), the most loud-ass drunk people I've ever seen in my life. The bartender was a hippie chick with no shoes on. It was awesome. I had a Coke. The bathroom was labeled awesome-ly.

We left after a drink. Made our way over to KJ's, where Ellen and I were mocked for noting that the bottles of booze behind the bar had prices written on them in Sharpie. PBR on tap was had. George Strait was listened to. The bathroom floor felt like it was gonna give out from under me. We were warned that "the state troopers were in town" on our way out. Kind locals.

We then made our way up to Gillespie, IL (not to be confused with much smaller East Gillespie). We landed at Val's Vittles/Chiefs II (not to be confused with Chiefs I, even though the stained glass on the beer cooler said Chiefs I, and not II). The bar is to the left.

Moved up in the world, had a Bud Select. Bartender was nice. Keeping in the theme, since we were completely obviously out of place at these joints, we were asked what we were doing in town, what we were doing the day, where we'd been, where we were going, etc. Kinda neat. Finished our drinks, and headed on down Rt 4.

Hit Carlinville, stopped at the Best Value Inn to get accomodations for the night. Hit Nick's Pizza for an awesome Italian sammach and shitty salad bar. Ate too much.

We went through Carlinville, and made our way to "The Carport Bar", which didn't have a carport on it anymore, and was called Full Throttle or something. Nothing eventful. Had a beer, they were setting up a bad (Hoosier Daddies) for a benefit for some R.D. guy.

Made our way back to Carlinville, where we landed at Hollywood & Vine. We were greeted by an incredibly creepy black and white full-size cut out of Clark Gable. The frontage window was full of... Vines. Really.

The bartender was Helen, and approximately 200 years old. I ordered a Jack and Coke, which she tried to talk me out of because "she (the owner? no one else was there) wants to charge $4 for Jack". I knew this already, since it was written on the bottle. I pushed for it. Across from the bar, above the "For Entertainment Only" (wink wink) slots was the Wall of Gable:
And of course, what apparently-Gable-themed bar in middle-of-nowhere, IL would be complete without a small Clark Gable puppet with a smaller Clark Gable puppet on its lap? (Flanked by Christmas trees. In April.)

Of course, I was completely elated:

(That's my Clark Gable-elated face)

After the 'experience' there, we headed to "The Square" (which is actually a circle/roundabout). There were about 4-5 bars here, none of which I know the names of. The first bar wasn't anything amazing, but there was this VERY drunk dude in a wheelchair, who rambled about the most incredible shit. I can't even comprehend most of it still, but there was one tirade where he was talking about his incredibly-awesome Mad Max-style power chair (seriously, thing had like huge off-road tires, bunch of copper tubing caged around his legs). Basically he was just talking about all the things that his wheelchair could kill:
  • Dogs
  • Fish
  • People
  • Motherfuckers out there
  • Everyone
  • Fuckin' Protazoans on the sidewalk.
  • E Boli Virus
  • Cats
  • Some other bacteria. Not sure what it was, but his biology teacher assured him "it was a motherfucker"
Another tale was about peacocks. Apparently there were some frozen ones in an ice storm falling out of a tree. He then invited some into his apartment, where they landed on his patio and hung out. Then he segue'd into another peacock story, which I managed to grab a snippet of on my phone:


We then hopped around to a couple other bars, with varying degrees of success. Actually pretty dead, we'd concluded that everyone was at "RD's" benefit thing, which wheelchair guy claimed was bullshit. Oh ya, we ran into him later at a different bar. This time it was something about the Ohio River.

The food and cumulation of beer had teamed up against all of us, and the lack of interesting people led us to be tired, we went back to the hotel around 12:30 or so and split ways.

Sunday: Woke up around 8, made the trek back to Collinsville to let the dog piss. We then wound up doing some shopping (for work clothes for me), and scoured the greater Fairview area for affordable patio furniture. We made a side trip to a carnival for exteremely overpriced corn dog action, and then looked at dogs at Petsmart. Found a set (of furniture) we liked, borrowed Nate's truck, took it home, and assembled it while Ellen worked on the yard a bit. Then sat down, had a beer, and chilled in the new comfy outdoor furniture. Headed inside, caught up on DVR action, and went to bed early.

Monday, April 14, 2008


I'm back. Whew! First off, as predicted, Benjamin Lown was born while we were gone, so yay them.

Thursday: Took off work early. Went to La Esperanza, the place that used to be Los Copreales, which was our former favorite mexican joint in town. Esperanza got their liquor license, so they're now our favorite, narrowly beating out Ramon's on food quality. Anyway, stuffed selves, went home to pack, with aspirations of getting to bed very early so we could be alive on Friday. Our flight was at 6a, so figured on waking up around 3ish in order to get to Lambert with enough time to navigate their constantly-fucked security situation. Ellen told me she was going to to do some laundry, which I thought she had already started since I kept hearing what I thought was the washing machine cycling downstairs.

Turns out, it was the sump pump constantly cycling because of the flooding in the basement. Fuck.

After moving things to higher ground, we tried to move all the water towards the sump, which we thought had come in under the poorly-sealed door. After clearing all the water, it was back a minute later. After some more CSI-work, I spotted bubbles coming from a crack in the floor. Awesome. Turns out the ground was so coimpletely saturated from our record rainfall, that the latest storm just pushed things over the edge, and water was flowing up through the ground.

Anyway, after screwing with that, it was a restless night of barely sleeping between worrying about the basement getting worse and have the rattly sump pump kick on every 5 minutes just as I was falling asleep. 3am came pretty fast.

Friday: dragged ass outta bed, did the airport shuffle, even getting their 2 hours early we made it to the gate with 15 minutes to spare. I hate Lambert. We had a connecting flight in Pittsburgh, with a 30 minute layover. Flight out was on-time, but of course we sat at the gate for 30 minutes waiting for 'paperwork' before we could take off. Got to PA and over to our other flight with -1 minutes, luckily we had 9 people on our flight that were heading to richmond, 3 of which were pilots, so they waited for us.

Got the Richmond without incident. C&C picked us up, and we went and checked into the hotel. Headed over to Pam's parents for leftover BBQ from thursday. Met the parents, both totally awesome. Girls went to get nails done, we drank beer with pam's dad for a little bit, then hit the cigar shop for accountrements. Went to the hotel again, hung out while we waited for ben & same, then headed over to get our tuxes. I wound up with a 40 coat instead of a 44, and a medium vest instead of a large, so they had to overnight my shit. Back to the hotel, changed, and did the rehersal thing, then over to this awesome italian joint for awesome italian food. Pam's dad gave an amazing speech, gifts in the form of booze were given (yay scotch), then it was back to the hotel for drinks. We bowed out halfway early due to death via tiredness. Then Nate dragged us out for cigars. Wound up in bed around midnight or 1 i guess.

Saturday: did the wedding thing. Played a lot of hangman on the whiteboard waiting for pictures. Good times. Wedding went off without a hitch, and even being an hour long Catholic wedding, it seemed to fly by. More pictures, then back to the hotel for vodka shots, and cocktail hour. Reception followed. Nate and Pam's entrance was awesome, with dancing and whatnot. Maid of honor Lauren started the speeches and did hers to the theme from the Fresh Prince, with groomsmen providing backup beat-box skeeelz. I'm sure it was horrible, but I couldn't hear the whole effect over my funky beats. I followed up with a haphazard nervous speech that was received much better than it sounded coming out of my mouth at the time. I actually got a lot of compliments on it through the night, so I guess it didn't suck. Standard reception revelry commenced, with video proof of jigs, Steve Perry powerslides, Schweighart dances and all sorts of other dorky white-person wedding shit. Awesome. Oh, there was an interpretive dance for American Pie, which was random and very confusing. But awesome.

After party commenced around 10, pizzas were ordered, cigars were smoked, scotch was drank, good times were had, $100+ bar tab was ran up. In bed by... 2? 1? Not sure.

Sunday: Woke up at some point, dragged ass out of the hotel, got to the airport, slept on the flight to PA, had an hour and a half layover this time, got to experience the incredible-ness that is the Pittsburgh airport. Seriously. Mall environment, had EVERYTHING. Great food court, Sbarro and all. Had a slice, ellen poked around the Gap, it was just bizarre. Grabbed plane to STL, slept more. Was greeted with 40* windy shit and snow spits, after being in 80* VA, we of course didn't bring coats. Got car, stopped by schnucks for randoms foods, grabbed tacobell, and went home. Watched I Am Legend, in bed by 8. My body is still completely beat to shit from boozery and wearing rental shoes and being on my feet for 16 hours Saturday. I think I'm still catching up from my lack of sleep Thursday as well. Jacuzzi heals all wounds. And coffee. And evil/awesome baked egg souffles from Panera. So good.

Monday, March 31, 2008

week/weekend/month update?


Let's see. Last Tuesday/wed/thursday I was in Minneapolis for conference. It was fairly boring, and I spent a lot of time chilling in the hotel and attached Irish Pub, which was nice. Got to know the staff to the point I was getting free drinks, which is either awesome or horrible. Got to roll around in a Town Car a lot, which was pimp.

Thursday, went to some expensive-ass seafood joint with a vendor rep, it was great. Hopped the plane back south, which was delayed on both ends, so it was about 12:30 or so before I actually got to my car. It was stupid raining and my tires in back were bald, and I went sideways on I55, which sucked. Met up with Lori/Ellen/Jodi at Fridays' for a couple drinks.

Friday: Woke up, took car to Midas for tires at 8a. Took dog to kennel, took phone to sprint for repair, picked up tux, picked up car, packed car, took nap. Headed north for wedding crap. Got to the rehearsal with time to spare due to fast driving awesomeness. Back to Basler's afterwards for booze and Rock Band until like 1.

Saturday: Had to be at church around 10 for wedding shit. Stood around forever, played poker, made cigar run, participated in wedding. Excursion limo was pimp, drove around, said "woo" a lot on green street. Booze and tux pictures are Hessel Park. Had 2 glasses of champagne and 3 beers in the limo. Beginning of the end.

Reception was in full force, good food, generic wedding DJ. So... much... booze. Seriously. Wow. Scotch and cigar tradition was enforced, and was the middle of the end. We polished off a fifth of Glenlivit between the 6-7 of us in about 15 minutes or so. Horrible idea.

Much of the remainder of the night is a blur, and/or missing. I wound up with the DJ's info handwritten on a piece of paper. We apparently hung out with the photographer in the hotel afterwards. I'm not coimpletely sure how we got anywhere. I remember fake trees in the hotel being liberated from the lobby and taken to rooms. It seemed like a great idea at the time. Fake trees are tall.

Taco Bell was apparently mashed into my face (by me), my tux tie/shirt took the brunt of the force though, which was fun to explain. Seriously, quite possibly the drunkest I've been in the history of ever. I ran a tab at Refinery, which was a bad idea in retrospect since I totally didn't take advantage of any of the free booze. Talked to Dave Harber a few times, which was cool.

Um, yah. D-R-U-N-K. I didn't hear about jigs, so that's good. Eric did do the worm. I apparently was an asshole to one of E's frat buddies who was hitting on Ellen.

Sunday: Hungover. Had Panera, drove home. Returned Tux, grabbed Red Robin. Went home, worked on some faulty house wiring. Sat on couch. Had apple cobbler. Bed at 9:30. I'm sick today, which I'm going to blame on Rob, and not sharing a bottle of scotch with 7 other people.

This week is sittig in silence, and taking sick time to recover fully so I can repeat everything in 2 weeks for Nate's wedding.

Friday, March 21, 2008

karma karma karma karma karma chameleon

Was late for work today delivering some old ladies dog that wound up in our yard. I rule. One of the few dogs that wasn't freaked out by Boris approaching it, so we let them play for a while, it pretty much solidified the fact that we're gonna end up with a 2nd dog, which is poor, but the mutt was so damn happy.

Anyway, the lady was kinda grateful, but she made it sound like this happens all the time, and she lived in a dumpy apartment complex with no grass for the dog, (bigger dog too), so I kinda felt bad for it. Also, I have a lot of mud on my back seat now.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Couple things

1 - Hooray for post-strike TV. How I Met Your Mother is still legen...

wait for it..


2 - When Ellen is downstairs on the bike doing her spanish lessons on the gameboy, it sounds like I have a mildly retarded mexican with torrets in my basement.

*silence* "MUCHACHO!"

*silence* "VERRRDE!"

(The gameboy has speech recognition and shit. I'm actually impressed with the spanish lessons too)

3 - When I bought another Mustang, I forgot that you have to really have an annual tire budget with these cars. That is poor, and compounded by my lust for wide wheels. $130/tire, grr.. I am, however willing to make that monetary sacrifice to keep from sliding into guardrails and avoid further driving wonkiness.

Monday, March 17, 2008

top of the blarney and whatnot

Friday: Laid low. Had Ramone's. Mariachi band was rocking it out. Some WT mofo made them play Feliz Navidad. I think/hope she was drunk. Cleaned house for baby shower Ellen was having. In bed early-ish.

Saturday: Woke up, showered, got McD's. Loaded up some rum in my coke, had Ellen take Eric and I downtown for parade action. Day started out generally shitty and rainy. Cleared up after 4 beers and a few hours. Watched dumb people run. Watched dumber runners dance badly to shitty cover bands.

Jake met up with us around noon. The parade had started by this time, and we were trying to locate each other, when a tractor fell over, which provided a good reference point, and a chance for Jake to cross the street.

Drank HEAVILY. Wound up going to Side Bar on wash before the parade was over to beat the crowd. Had INCREDIBLE corned beef and cabbage. It was sooooo fucking good. They did something with lots of brown sugar. God. So good. Obviously, more drinking. We hopped around bars trying to find someplace non-packed. Wound up at Keiner Plaza where there was another beer tent, and riverdance suddenly broke out. It was weird. Made our way back towards the river to Tigin(?), which was incredible, and much Hoegarden was drank, and incredible chicken fingers were had.

We split ways with Jake around 6, when the wives picked us up because they're awesome like that. After we drunkenly babbled a lot, we wound up at a Chinese buffet. That was a horrible idea. Only because we were REALLY drunk at this point, and probably shouldn't have been around families. Or food. Or tiny holes in the wall to the kitchen.

Anyway, we went back to the house for RockBand, and more beer and energy drinks. Helen/Eric split around 9? I guess 9. Maybe 10. I dunno. We apparently went downtown Cville to drink more. There's some massive blurs in here, but I remember being asked for my beer knowledge at Johnny's again (they ripped through my last selection, I need to be on beer comission), and winding up at Friday's South. Taco Bell was procured around 1:30 I believe. It was also incredible. Passing out happened. Only because my body completely shut down after drinking for 16+ hours straight. Yah.

Sunday: Woke up at 10, completely not as hungover as I shoulda been. Had Pizza Man. Watched movies. Took naps. In bed by 9. Today I'm in hangover-hangover mode, and a complete zombie. So dead. So horribly dead.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Rrrrobot horse!

Friday: Ellen was out of town, so I did what any good husband does when his wife is gone: played Rock Band for a while, then went to the bars by myself. Ran into one of my normal bartenders who was offduty, hung out with him for a while, ran into the new bar-couple friend from a couple weeks ago, caught up with them at Johnny's across the street, and hung out for a while. They left, Paul (the bartender) came over, we hung out for a while, he left, after getting me hooked on this evil, wonderful Rye Whiskey. Bellied up to the bar, hung out with Johnny and Doug (owners), talked about microbrews, and wound up going through half their menu doing tastings and helping them with their beer list, which was awesome. Another couple showed up, hung out with them for a while, they're Michigan imports apparently, something about Bell's, and random bullshit chatter. The wife crossed some invisible completely-fucking-plowed line and kept falling off her stool, so they left. I went back across the street to Friday's and ran into the drunk guy-who-drives-the-white-version-of-my-car-and-can-never-remember-my-name-but-still -knows-me, and Dane's uncle. Left there around 2:30. I'm afraid to look at my receipts from the night still, but I think I was pretty much taken care of at Johnny's. Hoping, anyway.

Saturday: Incredibly hungover. So bad. Watched Price Is Right special from Friday night while eating eggs, which was great. Plodded around the house for a while, got cleaned up and took the dog to get his nails cut/ground. Took him around petsmart to get some toys and new elevated water/food bowls. Dumb bastard was pulling so much he vomitted in aisle 6. That was un-fun. Got him home, grabbed some Arbys (Toasted Italian Sub, get it), then headed up to Alton for a poker game.

Hangover ruined me, I was useless, got knocked out of the game within an hour. Hung out for a bit, and excused myself due to hangover death. Stopped at Schnucks on the way home for Zing Zang and Absolute Peppar in hopes of curing what ailed me. Made some strong/spicy Bloody Marys, Davies came over for a bit, Helen was plowed/hilarious, Rock Band ensued. Hung out for a bit before they left at 1ish, rocked out a bit more until around 2:xx. Passed out hard.

Sunday: Woke up, had ambitions of either walking the dog or cleaning the car. Neither happened. Ellen showed up from Indy around 1. Made a Pizza Man run. Ate entirely too much. Caught up on DVR shit, watched Evan Almighty for some reason (horrib), finally watched King Kong (beautiful in HD). Ellen passed out due to sick death, I putzed around on the interwebs until midnight or so.

yay! blog!

Monday, February 25, 2008


friday - Went...oh. Went to Houlihan's for some grub. Hit up Friday's South for some drinkering. Got lost multiple games of photohunt and heavily-poured crown & cokes. Wound up with another random bar couple friend that's better at photohunt than we are. They're from Bloomington originally, and went to SIU, so there was plenty of good convo. Lori met up with us eventually, and then our other random bar couple friends were there too, so it was a little overwhelming. We eventually made our way across the street to Johnny's, where I had heavy beer conversation and business talk with Doug, the owner, and discovered the glory of Dogfishhead 60-Minute IPA, which I'd always written off before because I normally hate the over-hoppiness of IPAs. This was so well balanced, I almost died. Went home, passed out.

saturday - Ellen was dead in the morning due to lack of eating and excess of wine. Had McD's, sat around most of the day. Got caught up in the best show ever, on CMT, "My Big Redneck Wedding". This is a must-watch. Seriously. I don't care if it's completely scripted and everyone's an actor, it was the best thing ever. Helen/Eric came over around 7 or something, and we Rock Banded for a while, before we rolled into CWE for some "VIP" party at Drunken Fish. VIP apparently stands for "crowded-ass, non-interesting party with shitty bar service, and no free appetizers/drinks as advertised". Decent DJ though.

Got fed up with everything, and went across the street to Sub-Zero for strong vodka-based drink (in my case, vodka neat in massive amounts, dirty) and ironically, sushi. Which was decent. While there, we called ahead to see if we could reserve a booth at Mandarin, which was amazingly could, and they even made a bottle service exception for us. Service at Subzero was fucking horrible as well, so I was kinda l342lkjadsf with service-industry folks, until we got to Mandarin. Eric and I paid our cover, we got drinks, then after realizing we had to tell the doorman that we had a reserve booth, the manager somehow got involved, and she was completely fucking awesome. The doorman made a trip back up to refund our cover, and the waitress we wound up with was incredible. More drinking was done, I did a sake flight, which solidified the fact that I really like sake, but sadly I can't remember what I had and which one of the 3 I hated. So that was kinda a waste. But it was good. Incredible people watching, and lots of Asian lesbians.

Closed Mandarin down, and I was obliterated. Grabbed a paint roller from the stairway, because, hey, paint roller. Apparently babbled about Karate Kid and Mr. Miyagi "show me PAINTDAFENCE" while playing with my new toy on the way back to the car. Drove back (not me, someone else driving) in a sudden blizzard. More Rock Band ensued, and more drinking. Helen/Eric left at like 3 I guess. We continued to Rock Band. I was drumming, and apparently just fell over in the middle of a song. That sucked. Quit around 4:30 (damn the Rock Band time anomoly) when the booze had finally impared me to the point that I could no longer play drums on Hard. Which amazingly, is long after I can no longer sit upright or speak coherently.

sunday -- pain. Fish sandwich from Hardee's. Laundry. American Psycho. Cleaned the basement a bit, punched the heavy bag for a little while. Played more Rock Band.

Think that's it. I apparently drank most of my tax refund.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Somone call the Fart Doctor!!

Friday: Went to the eye doc, got a new one, she rocks. Came home, ate Taco Bell, played a little Rock Band. Chris texted me asking when I was leaving, since he said I should come up to Bloomington. Ellen was at happy hour, so I said fuggit, and wound up driving to Bloomington. Arrived at my destination shortly after 8pm, 2 hour drive FTW.

Yah. Ryan's birthday party was goin down, so I decided to pop in. My conclusions:
1) Chuck E Cheese sells beer, this is an absolute requirement to exist in my world, because:
2) THERE ARE SO MANY F'N KIDS. I mean, I realize it's a Chuck E Cheese, but I seriously felt my penis invert itself. The ultimate birth control.
3) Air hockey table is tiny, sinks are tiny, skee ball is tiny.
4) Robotic rats are very creepy when you're older than 10, as evidenced here.
5) Chuck E Cheese staff does not enjoy Chris dancing with the giant creepy rat after 4 beers, as evidenced here.

So, we closed down CeC I guess, at like 9 or something (lightweight 8 year olds, I tell ya), and headed over to some bowling alley for some bowling. Bowled a couple of games, people splintered off. Chris and I attempted to meet up with everyone at some bar I can't even remember the name of now, but regardless we failed at locating it, so we wound up at Pub II, where we drank much booze and tequila and other booze and ran into Jay Sanders. Tried to get in the middle of a fight and kick someone out of the bar who wound up working at the bar. It was awkward, but I was drunk and intimidating. He apologized. Hung out until after they closed somehow. Got a cab, went to Kappa Kabana, some horrible shitehole strip club. Cabbie (chick) was told by dispatch to just hang out there, so I invited her to come in with us. Chris ordered drinks, and proceeded to get kicked out for puking in a urinal. I yelled at bouncer (again, drunk), slammed drinks, and had the cabbie take us to the wrong hotel. Figured out where we'd decided to stay finally, crashed hard around 4:30 after wandering Schnucks for what seemed like 5 hours looking for contact solution that I left in my car, which was at PubII.

That was the longest paragraph ever.

Saturday: Woke up, ate Avanti's, drove home. Pooped, took shower, slept until 6pm. Nate & Beth came over so Nate could get his Rock Band fix. I drank a lot.

Sunday: Woke up, ate food, sat around most of the day. Wound up going to Edwardsville for Walmart run, poked around goodwill, and hit BW3 for the shittiest service ever in the history of anything. Came home, watched 3:10 to Yuma, which rocked my fucking face.

I think that's it. It's cold and icy. No me gusta.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

So, um.... My car has 2 vaginas.

They're right on the steering wheel. It's subtle. I noticed it on my way to work this morning.

Connect the dots...

Don't really feel like photoshopping this at the office, but you should get the idea. smile.gif

I'm not sure how I've gone so long in my life without ever noticing this. Now, I can't stop noticing.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

An open letter to Rob Corddry


Shave that thingy on the front of your head. I realize male pattern baldness is the meanest thing (my bald spot in the back is immediately to the right of my cowlick). Your case is exemplary though, and while it's an identifier, it's just weird, please remove it from your head.


I think I'm getting sick again...or relapsing, as I never 100% recovered from the last bout of this shite.

On the plus side, I think I'm ready to move up to "Hard" on Rock Band drums.

Monday, February 04, 2008

i'm just gonna rename this blog 'crap i've done'

Friday: Woke up, saw we had a snow day for work, celebrated by doing essentially nothing until about 3 whereupon I shoveled ours and our neighbor's driveways around 3 or so. Played much Rock Band. Watched a lot of TV while Ellen worked from home. Eventually left the house, hit Chili's for some food, hit wally-mart for provisions and accoutrements for supabowl sunday, air bed for the guest room, and other necessities. Spent WAY too much, but less in total than we would have spent on a 'real' Aerobed. Holyshit they're expensive. Hung out at the house, played more Rock Band, had a couple brews.

Saturday: Cleaned house/garage in anticipation of C&C's arrival. Helen & Eric showed up around 6, Rock Band ensued while we awaited C&C who arrived around 830 or something. Hit Ramone's for mexi-love, the waitress knew I required Negro Modelo, I need to vary my dining apparently.

Hit Johnny's Sidebar for a little vino/brew (They have O'Hara's Irish Red, I'm very happy about this) Rachel and Clayton showed up at some point, and there was hanging out. Went across the street to Friday's for b-day shots for Helen, and more boozing. Went some point? Got stuck in the cemetary. Got to house eventually, made drinks, more Rock Band ensued. I think. Helen & Eric left around 3. We kept partying. Darts, and beer pong happened, Chris & I decided drunken sledding was in order, despite the fact that the road around the cemetary had been plowed. Pain.

After that, went back in to the house, and MORE Rock Band happened, until we realized that it was 6:30am and the sun was out. Whoops.

Sunday: Slept till about noon-thirty. Hit Pizza Man for THE HUGEST BREADSTICKS KNOWN TO MAN. Seriously. And we orderd 15 of them. Whoops. And 2 pies. Ate heavily. Played Rock Band (sensing a theme here?) Helen & Eric came over, chili was made, cake was ate, dog farted, Giants beat the Pats. Good time, boring game for the most part, good hanging though. Everyone left, and we immediately went to bed (around 10ish).

Still dead.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Here it goes again

I'm gonna start doing song lyric titles.

Friday: Took care of banking crap after work, had Taco Bell, played Rock Band for a bit. Went up to McDills while waiting for Lown to get off work. Ellen calls me about 9 saying she's at Friday's, and her happy hour was over early. So I meet her over there where she's already got two extremely drunk/funny guys hanging on her. We go across the street to the new wine bar, Johnny's, which had been open for 3 hours. Neat little place, decent wine selection, should be a good mix for the area. Had scotch.

Was outside with one of the drunktards, and the convo went like this:
"Hey, how do you know that chick we're with?"
"She's my wife"
"Oh. Shit. Shit."
"Why, what'd you do?"
"Nothing, just shit. Fuck, man."

It was kinda funny. Ellen confirmed that he didn't do anything but exceedingly try/fail to hit on her. They left shortly after that though. Oh well. Anyway, Nate/Beth met us up at @Johnny's, Ellen drunkenly rambled, we all hung out. Lowns left at some point, we went back over to Friday's where Paul mixed up some strong martinis and Ellen got obliterated. Home around 4.

Saturday: Woke up at noon. Hung out around the house for a bit. Went to Men's Wearhouse, got tuxes for weddings taken care of. Had BW3. Went to Goodwill, Best Buy. Taking every bit of my soul/willpower to not blow my tax refund on a new 50" Plasma.

Saw a guy holding a sign on the sidewalk for a "manufacture's blowout" at Weekends Only. So, just like anytime we see a guy holding a sign on the road, we bought furniture. Grabbed a small chair for the living room, really ties the room together. Hit Target for furniture accoutrements (Pillows and shit). Took chair home, dropped off nate's truck, went back home, watched He was a Quiet Man, which was pretty good, had some cheap nasty sake, fell asleep at some point.

Sunday: Hung out and did nothing most of the day, washed car, wound up putzing around outside with the neighbor's kids and dog and stuff instead of cleaning my rims as I intended. Got Pizza Man, watched a lot of standup on comedy central. Played Rock Band for like 3 hours. I'm very happy Ellen is pro-rock band, it's making life very easy since it eats all my time.

This week is projects that are coming to a head for no good reason, and big dumb board meeting thursday night that is going to suck my soul and net me a lot more work. Mardi Gras/Superbowl this weekend (which is a partial driver in the TV quandry). I still have a retarded cough/nose issue that won't go away. Thatisall.

Friday, January 25, 2008

my brain's broked

Rock Band is fucking me up. I can't listen to a song without seeing the drum track now. I just wrote the drum track on Easy for Foo's I'll Stick Around on the drive into work today. It looked really fun.

I'm moving onto Medium, and I still can't play any Queens of the Stone Age on drums, stupid down-beat kick pedal screwing up my entire soul.

Yep, Imaloser. At least I'm dragging Ellen down with me. It's been Rock Band sessions every night since I bought the thing.

Weekend Plans:
Firday: Brewskis with Lownski, chilling, probable Rock Band.
Saturday: Not sure, I wouldn't be opposed to heading to Scottish Arms for haggis and Scotch though. We'll see though. I have to get measured for tux(es) this weekend. Nate's bach party is pretty much booked and setup, helping with Eric's now. Need to buy plane tix for Nate's wedding still. Gargle.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Spirit Journey Formation Anniversary

Yeah, yesterday was my birthday. Being one of the birthdays that isn't actually important in life, I pretty much avoided/ignored it. I did realize how much I suck at keeping track of other people's birthdays, even via facebook/myspace, after seeing how many people left me well wishes. Oh well. Thanks, anyway.

My afternoon was spent at the DMV, which was fairly painless. They did comment on how much weight I'd lost (they still had an electronic photo of when I was like 21 or something in their system, and showed me my huge-ass headshot). Got 100% on my written test (whoody who), and am finally registered to vote at my current residence, am an organ donor, and have a driver's license for the state I live in for the first time in like 3 years, with an address that's less than 5 addresses old. It's neat.

Ellen took me to Porters, where massive quantities of steak/lobster were consumed, and german chocolate cake. She did the trickster thing on me, saying earlier that she didn't have a chance to pickup a gift for me yet since she'd been sick; lo and behold she slipped a box under my coat at the restaurant, which had an exteremly pimp-ass pimp Fossil chrono watch in it, very fucking awesome. Went home, watched Idol on the DVR, and Rock Band'd out until her NyQuil kicked in. I've created a Rock Band monster. She's been monopolizing the guitar, I think I've rocked on guitar twice since I bought the thing.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

cuz i'm back from the dead, with a shaved head

Wow. That sickness sucked my ass in such a hard manner, I can't even describe it.

Currently operating at 84%.

Friday: Didn't do shit. Ordered Papa Johns online. Watched TV? I dunno. Played video games maybe. Helped Nate load a washing machine into his truck.

Saturday: Lounged, did taxes (w00t). Bought Rock Band at Best Buy. Let out Lown's dogs. Checked on Helen's cat. Let out Nate's dogs again. Did laundry. Played Rock Band.

Sunday: Ellen came back at some point, played Rock Band a little bit, watched movies, finished laundry.

Monday: More Rock Band/Movies, had BW3

Seriously, big weekend.

I haven't drank pop since last Monday. This is due to sickness. I still have 0 desire to even try and drink pop right now. I'm drinking redic amounts of water. I tried drinking a watered-down diet coke from Hardee's the other day and it killed my throat. Not sure how I'll react to booze, there's a happy hour Thursday in Wood River I'm supposed to go to, though. And I had aspirations of drinking this weekend, but now Ellen is laid up with the shit I had last week, so who knows.

Sick sucks.

Friday, January 18, 2008

I'm fairly certain

I've developed the Whooping Cough.

Holy. Fuck.

3 things:

1. "Clandestine" is still one of my favorite words of all time. They're saying it about 389 times during this Green Berets show.

2. I screwed up shaving for the first time in 4 days, and wound up having to remove my "beard glasses" as Nate calls them. I'm back to rocking the standard-issue fumanchu.

3. I broke down and called the doc AGAIN about this non-leaving fever. Nurse said "have you taken Tylenol?" ..... no. "Take Tylenol".


Currently operating at 35%. Leaving the house today wiped my shit out. I am in possession of pineapple/orange/banana juice, mucinex extra-strength (it's not doing shit), new razor blades, and a squeaky duck for the dog.

Death Update

Currently operating at: 40-45%

I think everything broke last night. I still have a mild fever (99.x), but all my symptoms are in my chest, which probably means I have pneumonia. Todays plans include standing in the hottest shower ever created for about 2 hours, and taking some hardcore Tussin expectorant. The Final Countdown, if you will.

This has nothing to do with anything, but I'm watching some crap on National Geographic HD (best channel ever btw) about people who have their dead pets stuffed, and it's creepy as shit.

Weekend plans include not relapsing, possibly playing video games, and cleaning/burning the house to remove all traces of viral death.

It costs ~$2,500 to stuff a dog.

There's nothing more entertaining than watching the dog watch TV.

Um... Oh. Yah, lung cheese day. Thatisall.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Fever Pitch

Day 28921.

At least that what it feels like. I haven't showered/shaved since Monday, it's kinda liberating (and smelly).

My days are filled with bundling up constantly to stave off shakes, then kicking off all blankets once I start sweating. Rinse, repeat.

Yesterday I woke up with a temperature, but it broke by noon. Same today, except it's been holding steady around 100.3-100.9 all day, except around noon when everything seemed cool. Symptoms are starting to fade away a little bit (I can kinda talk now, my nose isn't running like a Kenyan anymore), I just mostly feel like I've been hit by a truck, in my sinuses.

Puffs with lotion are my savior, as well as the following:
Toast with honey
Tea with lemon/honey
Pudding Pops (just ventured into my first one today, it was like nothing I've ever had before)
Assorted condensed soups, which I'm tiring of.
Grilled cheese
NyQuil (green death)

Ellen has moved to the sleeping on the couch to keep from catching whatever death I have, since she's travelling to Loder tomorrow.

My hopes of health in time for long weekend debauchery are fading. I have to help Lown load a washing machine tomorrow, and help some dude load my pingpong table into the truck ($10 loss over my purchase price, what?)

Streaming 12 Oz Mouse on the PS3 (one thing it excels at compared to the XBox). I'm not sure if it's helping, or hurting my psyche. I think if nothing else, if I start going crazy from the fever, I won't notice. So that's good, right?

I'm refusing to break down and call the doc back, which in my head is the absolute right thing to do at this point. I love being machismo.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

I am Jack's death of crap and lungs

Currently operating at -20%

Monday I couldn't talk
Tuesday I sucked it up and went to the doctor for the first time in 3 years. Was given antibiotics and told to suck it up, Sally.
Today: Woke up with a 101.1 fever, hacked up crap until I was in tears. Going through the whole chill/sweat/chill thing, which is awesome. Haven't had a fever in like... I don't even know when.

This fucking sucks.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Shawty got low low low low prices on sofas and ottomans

Friday - Met up with Lowns and Davies for goodness in the form of food (Schiappa's, home of the future attempt of Eric and I to eat a 36" pizza). Then after facing failure of seating at Hurricane's, and failure of open at Lil' Peeps, resigned ourselves to formerly-unexplored McDills, where much fun was had people watching and playing pool and butchering Rick James and drinking too much. Dropped off the Davies at like 1, then Ellen and I went back up to Friday's, because we're idiots like that. Got home about 3:30.

Saturday - Woke up at 9, entirely too hungover, to go sit in the DMV lobby. My attempts at obtaining Illinois-specific identification failed (damn you baby feet birth certificate that they used to take, but don't anymore). Ellen was successful, though, so it wasn't all for nothing. Went to BW3 afterwards for the Spicy Garlic Bloody Mary lovin, that is the elixr of life. So good. Oh, and wings and shit. Went to Best Buy for a PS3 controller, then home to regroup, then to Schnucks and Shop n' Save for Hummingbird accoutrements for the evening, and other miscellane. Back home, attempted to nap, was awaken by neighbor. Worked on neighbor's brakes for a bit, actually took a nap afterward. Ellen woke me up with Taco Bell, which was great. Ate, Davies came back over, we perfected our hummingbird recipe (the secret is milk, for smoothie-like texture), drank more, hung out. Went to bed around midnight after having formal debates on jacuzzi action (the floor lost).

Sunday -Slept till noon. Woke up sick. Spent the day inside in PJs watching movies. Ate chinese. Wasn't as good as it was last time we had chinese, which was in Chinatown. Talked to Nate. Played Pain on PS3, ellen is good at slingshotting guys. Thatisall.

Today I am en route to full failure this week via sickness. My voice, what is left of it anyway, sounds completely badass. I should record a CD.

Congrats to the Lammles for their successful reproduction!

I'm putting a lot of faith in the USPS

I'm dumb. My license expires next wednesday, the 23rd. I am mailing a request for a certified birth certificate in today (1/14). The Clerk's office claims it should only take 1-2 days for them to turn around the request and mail out the certificate(s). In a perfect world, my request will get there by Wednesday, and they mail out the certs by Friday, and I get them Tuesday.

In a perfect world.

I forsee having to take time off and make a trip to Paxton in my immediate future.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

short note

Good luck to the Lammles with everything today!

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

day of recovery/football goodness

In cali still. Ellen & Erin are upstairs watching High School Musical 2 or some such shit, Chet and I are downstairs rehydrating and watching bowl games (fucking Illini). Thusfar:

Friday: Woke up at like 3a, went to airport, caught flights and connection in MN with little drama. Landed in Sacramende's 70s airport early. Fritz's picked us up, hit BJs for Jeremiah Red (awesome brew) and food, then hung out for a bit, don't remember what else, then drank heavily until 1a or so. So drunk.

Saturday: Woke up at some point. Hung out... Went to Walnut Creek for pointless window shopping and meandering, food, UFC fight and Pats Game. Drank more of course.

Sunday: Woke up, took a cool-ass ferry trip (with beer, natch) across san pedro bay and SF bay into the city. Meandered SF for a while. Hit Chinatown, had awesome Chinese food (duh), did a lot of poking around the shops. Women got some bracelets, Chet a wok, me, some fucked up candy for Found all the strip clubs in SF. Walked down to Fisherman's Wharf, chilled, had a drink, putzed around down there for a while, just did a lot of touristy sight-seeing type stuff. Caught ferry back at like 7 or something. Went to kick-ass resturaunt called the Dead Fish where much crab was consumed and more beer, of course. Came back home, drank.

Monday: Drove into SF this time, took ferry out to Alcatraz for a tour, flippin' neat. Went back to Vallejo area, got provisions for NYE party at Fritz's. Got back, setup, made food, people showed. Foosball played, much drinks drank, beerpong played. Wound up in bed around 4 or so, one of chet's severely drunked co-workers appparently got turned around and got into bed with me at like 5. Ellen was asleep out on the couch, so I was woken up all kinds of confused. Managed to get drunk chick back to proper bed, then slept till the wee hours of the afternoon.

Today: Woke up, ate leftover chili and shit. Hydrated. Watched football. Probably go to bed shortly. :)

Tomorrow is apparently Napa valley wineries, then who knows what wednesday. Flight back at noon on Thursday, get back into town at 10:30pm or so, then drive home, wake up, and go to work Friday and stab everyone. I hate being out of vacation time.

Bay area is really cool shitloads of pics upon return.

Happy new year everyone!