Entries 300 - 276

ENTRY # 300
DATE:  11/07/07 (Wednesday)
SUBJECT:  Some Bad News...

     My Mom just called... which is weird 'cause today is Wednesday. We usually talk every Monday so as soon as I heard her voice I knew something must be wrong. And there is... my step-father had a stroke. On Sunday (the 4th), three days ago.
     When I talked to her Monday night I thought something was wrong 'cause she didn't sound like herself. But when I asked her if everything was OK, she said she was just tired because she had a really busy day working outside in the yard taking care of the horses and lugging a bunch of wood down to the basement for the furnace. My first reaction was, "Yeah, OK, that makes sense," 'cause I know that's a lot of work... but once we hung up I had a funny feeling. I knew it was more than just "being tired." She didn't really sound tired. She sounded stressed out. I almost called her back to pry a little more but I figured if it's something major she'd tell me about it when she was ready.
     Well... today she was ready, hence the phone call. She said she didn't want to mention anything Monday when we spoke 'cause she didn't want to worry me since they didn't "know anything for sure yet." Now that it's Wednesday, they do know for sure. Here's what happened...
     Sunday night my step-father went to bed early 'cause he said he didn't feel well. As he was walking down the hallway towards the bedroom my Mom noticed he was walking funny. She followed him down the hall and asked what was wrong. While he was answering her, she also noticed his speech was a little slurred. He said he was "just tired" and wanted to go to bed. She let him, even though she was worried.
     Monday morning, while sitting at the kitchen table, he was having trouble with one of his hands. He couldn't seem to button his shirt... and he was also having a hard time using his knife and fork. His speech was still slurring slightly but - thankfully - not as bad as the night before. Regardless, my Mom called the doctor and explained all the symptoms. They said they wanted to see him right away so an appointment was made for later that afternoon. During that appointment, the doctor confirmed my Mom's initial fear -- that he had suffered a mild stroke -- and he set up a second appointment for my step-father to have an ultrasound done at the hospital.
     He had the ultrasound today. He's got a 75% blockage in his carotid artery. He needs surgery. We're not sure yet when the surgery is going to be but it's gotta be soon. The doctor said that, because of the upcoming holiday (Thanksgiving), they're already booked solid for the next couple of weeks. So, as of right now, we're hoping the surgery can be scheduled during the week after Thanksgiving.
     He's also scheduled to have an MRI done next Wednesday. Even though they already know there's a blockage and where it's located, the doctor said the MRI should still be performed in order to give the surgeon "more accurate pictures" of what's involved.
     So.... that's all I know for now. As more details come to me, I'll let y'all know what's going on.


ENTRY # 299
DATE:  10/28/07 (Sunday)
SUBJECT:  The Red Sox Go ALL THE WAY... AGAIN!!!

     OK, so the 2004 World Series wasn't just a fluke after all! HA! So there! "The Curse" is definitely broken 'cause The Boys just won the championship AGAIN (only three years after their last victory)!!! I can't even tell ya how psyched I am right now. I will say this though... As the Red Sox are - at this very moment - still celebrating all over Colorado's field, I've been dancing around my living room for the last ten minutes doing my own little Victory Dance!

Game 1 -- 13 to 1

Game 2 -- 2 to 1

Game 3 -- 10 to 5

Game 4 -- 4 to 3

     Ayuh, we kicked some major Rockies butt!!! WOOOOHOOOOOOOOO!!!!!
     Gotta run for now. I've got more victory dancin' to do!


ENTRY # 298
DATE:  10/21/07 (Sunday) 11:45pm
SUBJECT:  Red Sox Win the ALCS!!!!!

Game 1 ----- BOS, 10 to 3
Game 2 ----- CLE, 13 to 6
Game 3 ----- CLE, 6 to 4
Game 4 ----- CLE, 7 to 3
Game 5 ----- BOS, 7 to 1
Game 6 ----- BOS, 12 to 2
Game 7 ----- BOS, 11 to 2

     WOOOHOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!! The Red Sox made it to the World Series!!! Game One - against the Colorado Rockies - is Wednesday night, 8:00pm on FOX. The game is at Fenway so we've got home-field advantage AND Josh Beckett is pitching! GOOOOOOOO RED SOX!!!!!


ENTRY # 297
DATE:  10/10/07 (Wednesday)
SUBJECT:  A Letter from Wal*Mart...

     After Mr. and Mrs. Fenton retired, she insisted that her husband accompany her during her trips to Wal*Mart. Mr. Fenton was like most men -- he found shopping boring and preferred to make quick trips in and out of the store. Mrs. Fenton, being like most women, preferred to browse.
     One day, Mrs. Fenton received the following letter from her local Wal*Mart...

Dear Mrs. Fenton,

     Over the past six months, your husband has been causing quite a commotion in our store. We cannot tolerate this behavior and may be forced to ban both of you from our establishment. Our complaints against Mr. Fenton are listed below. They have all been documented by our video surveillance cameras:

     June 15:  Took 24 boxes of condoms and randomly put them in people's carts when they weren't looking.

     July 2:  Set all the alarm clocks in Housewares to go off at 5-minute intervals.

     July 7:  Made a trail of tomato juice on the floor leading to the Women's restroom.

     July 19: Walked up to an employee and told her in an official voice, "Code 3 in Housewares. Get on it right away."

     August 4:  Went to the Service Desk and tried to put a bag of M&Ms on lay-a-way.

     September 14:  Moved a "CAUTION - WET FLOOR" sign to a carpeted area.

     September 21:  Set up a tent in the Camping department and told other shoppers he'd invite them in if they would bring pillows and blankets from the Bedding department.

     October 4:  Looked right into the security camera and used it as a mirror while he picked his nose.

     November 10:  While handling guns in the Hunting department he asked the clerk where the anti-depressants were.

     December 6:  In the Auto department, he practiced his Madonna look by "using different sizes of funnels."

     December 18:  Hid in a clothing rack and when customers browsed through them yelled "PICK ME! PICK ME!"

     December 23:  Went into the fitting room, shut the door, waited awhile, then yelled very loudly, "Hey! There's no toilet paper in here!"


ENTRY # 296
DATE:  10/08/07 (Monday)
SUBJECT:  It's Over for the Yankees!

     The Yanks just got spanked - and spanked HARD - by the Cleveland Indians so they're done for the year. Jeesh, I can't believe it. It's the third year in a row the Yankees lost the division series. Not sure what's gonna happen to ol' Joe now. Some folks are sayin' he might get fired. Aww, too bad, LOL.
     So, as for us, we're going head-to-head with the Indians on Friday night at Fenway Park. After seeing how well the Indians played their last set, I'm a little nervous. Hopefully we won't get [*gulp*] scalped.


ENTRY # 295
DATE:  10/07/07 (Sunday)
SUBJECT:  ALDS - Game Three...

RED SOX -------- 9
ANGELS --------- 1

     As it turned out, Schilling did pretty good after all, LOL!!! WOOHOOOO!!!
     We swept all three ALDS games.... now we need to do it all over again during the ALCS games. I've STILL got my fingers crossed!  :-)
     Josh Beckett is pitching Game One on Friday, Oct. 12th. I CAN'T WAIT!!!!


ENTRY # 294
DATE:  10/05/07 (Friday) - Midnight
SUBJECT:  ALDS - Game Two...

RED SOX ------ 6
ANGELS-------- 3

     WOOOHOOOOOOOO!!! Gooooooooooo RED SOX!!!!! Just as I predicted, we won Game 2 of the ALDS Playoffs. It wasn't as "easy" as I thought it was gonna be though. Matsuzaka was the starting pitcher but, after only five innings, he was replaced by Javier Lopez. Then, we ended up bringing in Papelbon to wrap things up for us.
     It actually ended up turning into a real NAIL-BITER of a game there for a while. Coco Crisp's error didn't help matters any. We got stuck with an extra out because he neglected to tag the bag at second on his way back to first, but - hey - that's OK... we won anyways!!!
     Now it's on to Game Three in Anaheim, CA! Hopefully Schilling won't blow it. I've got my fingers crossed, that's for sure!


ENTRY # 293
DATE:  10/04/07 (Thursday)
SUBJECT:  Random Ramblings (Part Two)...

 1.  Game One of the [ALDS] Playoffs last night was AWESOME!!! The crowd at Fenway Park was rocking the Green Monster! The Red Sox kicked ass thanks to Josh Beckett's impeccable arm! He pitched a complete SHUT OUT game - only allowing three single-base hits - the final score being four to zero!
     Game Two is tomorrow night (also at Fenway) but I'm not sure who's pitching yet. I have a good feeling we'll win that one, too, based solely on the fact "The Boys" are PUMPED UP and FEELING GOOOOOOOD right now!
     It's Game Three - on Sunday - I'm concerned about. I'm expecting to lose that one. It's in Anaheim, California and Schilling is pitching. That's two strikes against us already and we're not even there yet, LOL. Schilling just isn't the pitcher he used to be... and I'm sure the jet-lag won't help us any either. We'll see...
     GOOOOOOOOOOO RED SOX!!!!!

 2.  OK, world, here's a question for ya....... I watch the Weather Channel every morning before heading off to work. During the Local-On-the-Eights segments, when they display the "Local Doppler Radar" pictures, I've noticed that it says "Past 3 Hours" across the top of that screen. My question is this: Why do I need to know what the weather was three hours ago??? It's over. It's gone. It's moved on. It's in the past. Hell, I wasn't even awake yet.
     I mean, c'mon, the whole point of TWC is to see what the weather is gonna be, not what it was, right? Do YOU tune into TWC to see what the weather was like yesterday? No. Of course you don't. Who cares what the weather was? I don't get it.
     If they're gonna give me Local Doppler Radar images to study, they should be CURRENT Local Doppler Radar images. Why are they giving me images from three hours ago? WHY???

 3.  Cops. Cops piss me off. They piss me off simply because they think "being a cop" means they can do whatever they damn well please... especially when it comes to the rules of the road. I swear to God, cops are the WORST drivers on the planet. Apparently, the laws they enforce don't apply to them at all. Ever. They speed, they run red lights, they drive in the break-down and/or car pool lanes on the highway, they park wherever they feel like it, they make illegal U-Turns. Everything we'd get a ticket for, they do... and they get away with it just because they're cops.
     Milford cops are really bad. They take advantage of their "Cop Status" constantly. Just about every day, when I'm out making deliveries, I see a cop turn his/her lights on just so they can sail through the red light that's up ahead. Then, immediately after they've cleared the intersection, their lights go out. And a couple weeks ago I actually witnessed one of "Milford's Finest" clear a path for himself through the Dunkin' Donuts parking lot in order to get into the drive-thru line ahead of the rest of us. The son-of-a-bitch actually turned his siren on, not just his lights. We all pulled over to let him pass, thinking there was some kind of an emergency, and once we were all out of his way - instead of driving straight ahead - he made a quick left into the drive-thru. Then, all of a sudden, POOF, just like magic, no more siren.
     Personally, I'm sick of it. I think, from now on, I'm gonna start reporting all the incidents I see. I'm sure it won't make a bit of difference but it would, at least, make me feel better.

 4.  Another question..... Do dead birds mean anything? Are they a bad omen or something??? I know this is a weird question but, the thing is, I've come across FOUR dead birds in the last six days.
     The first one was a yellow Finch. I discovered its carcass last week directly in front of our main entrance at work. Our store-front is primarily glass. Birds crashing into windows is a common enough occurrence so I didn't think much of it. When I found it lying there I was like, "Aww, the poor thing," and that was that. Since I consider the act of decomposing a strictly personal matter, I swept its body under some bushes so it could rot peacefully in a more private, out-of-the-public-eye setting. I figured the poor little guy had already suffered enough shame by slamming into the window in the first place. (D'oh!!!) He didn't need the extra-added embarrassment of rotting in full view of just anyone who happened to traipse by.
     The second bird was a pigeon. I found this one at work too but, unlike the Finch, the pigeon was located around the back of our building on the other side of the block. David sent me out to get the mail and there it was, in the middle of the sidewalk, right in front of the mailboxes. There are millions of pigeons roosting all over the town of Milford so, again, I didn't think anything of it at the time. I just stepped over it, got the mail, then went back inside. No big deal.
     I found the third one right outside my own house. I couldn't tell what kind of a bird it was though. It was either a Sparrow or a Chickadee, I'm not sure... not that it matters any. It had, apparently, met the Tweet Reaper a while ago because the great "Circle of Life" was already in full swing. This was made quite clear by the 500,000 ants swarming all over it. As soon as I saw it all I could think was, "Damn, another one?"
     And, today, I came across the fourth one while making a delivery. It was at "EDR" on Wheelers Farm Road. I entered the building through their main entrance -- a huge revolving door. No dead bird. Five minutes later I exited the building through the same revolving door and - PRESTO! - there's a dead bird. It was an iridescent, bright green/blue Hummingbird. I just stood there staring down at it thinking, "That wasn't there a minute ago. What the hell is going on???"
     Four dead birds in less than a week. That's a bit unusual, I'd say. I'm starting to wonder if I've been hexed and all these birds are supposed to be a warning that something bad is gonna happen to me. It's kind'a creepy...

 5.  An observation:  I think all my friends prefer to talk to my answering-machine rather than me.
     LOL, I'm sure that's not true... but it does seem weird that they all call when they know I'm not home. I can't tell you how many weekends I've spent at home during which the phone never rings. However, in the middle of the week - when I get home from work - it never fails, the message light on my machine is blinking for attention!
     Why are they calling me at 4:17pm on a Thursday afternoon? Or at 11:30am on a Tuesday? They KNOW I'm at work. Christ, I've had the same hours for fifteen years. Since 1993 I've worked from 8:30 to 5:30, Monday thru Friday. This is not new information, LOL. I don't get it...

 6.  A Realization:  If I had stayed married, my fourteenth wedding anniversary would've been yesterday. Damn. Time flies...
     A Second Realization:  My ex-stepdaughter, Shannon, celebrated her eighteenth birthday in August. She was three when I met her. Double damn.

 7.  From now on, 'til about the end of November, I'm stuck with road construction during my daily commute to and from work on I-95. I don't know what the hell they're doing -- whether it's a repair or just plain paving -- but I-95 is a friggin' mess.
     So far, I've been lucky. The traffic hasn't been too bad (since I travel against the flow) so I don't mind it all that much. I just leave the house a few minutes earlier and everything's fine.
     What I do mind, though, is all the construction signs in the break-down lane. They're distracting -- and not to mention annoying. I'm sure you've all seen them... those gigantic, bright orange eye sores proclaiming nothing but the obvious -- "ROUGH ROAD AHEAD" -- as if we hadn't already noticed the four dump trucks, the cement mixer, the two steam rollers, the fuming stench of hot tar, the police cars, the flashing yellow lights, the barricades, the flares, and the twenty-five tattooed, scraggly-bearded, sweaty-dirty, pot-bellied construction workers. Rough road ahead? Um... ya think???
     After passing through all that construction chaos, it's the signs that bother me the most. They're pointless. They don't need to be there. Plus, I'm beginning to take their message personally. As I cruise by all the ROUGH ROAD AHEAD reminders -- every day, twice a day -- I think the same thing: "Yeah, no shit. That's the story of my life!"

 8.  I've received a few inquiries regarding entry # 276. People want to know why I fed my cat with the refrigerator door open, instead of just turning on the air-conditioner. Well... that's easy. Opening the refrigerator door gave me IMMEDIATE RESULTS. It takes my AC about six hours to cool off my apartment and I didn't want her dinner delayed that long. When my cat gets "over hungry" she throws up and I try to avoid that as often as I can, LOL.
     Plus, having the refrigerator door open for ten minutes is a LOT cheaper than running the AC for six hours.  ;-)


ENTRY # 292
DATE:  10/03/07 (Wednesday)
SUBJECT:  "Part Two" Coming Soon...

     The Red Sox are playing the Angels tonight. It's the first game of the Playoffs and I GOTTA watch it. So... "Random Ramblings - Part Two" won't be happening tonight after all. I'll try to get it up tomorrow night instead but, depending on the baseball schedule, I can't make any promises, LOL.
     GOOOOOOOO RED SOX!!!!!!


ENTRY # 291
DATE:  10/02/07 (Tuesday)
SUBJECT:  Random Ramblings (Part One)...

 1.  I'm still working on editing out all the extra commas (as mentioned in entry # 284). It's taking forever. Every night I try to edit at least one or two entries. So far, I'm only up to entry 75, LOL. Needless to say, I've got quite a bit of work to do. Goody, goody.

 2.  For the last year or two, Zachary (Jen & Mark's son) has been sleep-walking. He's also been experiencing migraine headaches for the last couple of months. After some extensive testing, he's been diagnosed with "Frontal Lobe Epilepsy." He had an MRI last week and, thankfully, there has been no brain damage at all from the seizures. The doctors say there's "great chances" he'll outgrow this form of epilepsy since it's such a "mild" case... but, since he's only seven years old, he'll have to remain on medication for approximately ten years before he can be tested again (to see if it's gone).

 3.  Jennifer, herself, has had some tests done as well. About a month ago, during a regularly scheduled exam, her doctor spotted five "funny looking freckles." He referred her to a dermatologist for some tests. As soon as the dermatologist saw them he said they looked like Melanomas. He did biopsies on two of the worst-looking ones and again, thankfully, they were negative. As for the other three, they've been properly "documented" and the dermatologist will be seeing Jen every six months from now on to keep an eye on them.

 4.  Caught "Mouse #9" on September 21st. I haven't named him yet 'cause I don't plan on keeping him long enough to bother. He's currently sharing the aquarium with Ocho. The "Big Release" is tentatively scheduled for this upcoming weekend as long as the weather is decent enough. Thank God, too, 'cause the exercise-wheel in their tank is practically driving me to drink!

 5.  Had a busy weekend at Mom's a couple weeks ago. She cut and colored my hair again. It's an inch and a half shorter than it was and it's a LOT darker. The gray is completely gone now. Although, the color is a bit too dark for my complexion. The next time we attempt it I'm gonna go back to the lighter color we used the first time... we'll just leave it in longer so it covers all the gray (unlike last time).
     My step-father and I washed and waxed my car.... it's FINALLY clean again. Wooohooooo! It was lookin' kind'a crappy there for a while, LOL. And, of course, by the time I got it home it was covered with dust. The next day I stopped at AutoZone and purchased one of those "Car Duster" things. It works great... but now I'm forced to keep an eye on the weather. When I hear that rain is in the forecast I have to rush outside to dust the car off so the rain won't make "dust drops" all over it. I honestly don't know how long I'll keep this up but, for now, I'm content with it.
     I finally met "Jack Frost," the new horse my Mom is boarding. He's gorgeous but trying to catch him is a challenge. He's a horse that's used to being worked so every time you try to approach him he runs away 'cause he doesn't wanna be saddled up. I spent most of the weekend trying to give him some "positive reinforcement" to help break him of that. I kept walking out to the corral with treats for him - fresh grass, grain, ears of corn, sugar cubes, and an apple - to get him used to the idea that humans don't always mean work! By the time the weekend was over he was actually walking over to me instead of running off. That's cool... but I don't know if it's gonna be a lasting impression or not. We'll see.
     I also entertained my Mom and step-dad with 730 photographs from my vacation that, yes, I KNOW, I still haven't written about. (I'll get to it one of these days, I swear!!!) They loved the Statue of Liberty shots we took!

 6.  And, in case you're wondering, yes, we now have fleas at work thanks to the damn Septage Sucker. In entry # 284 I mentioned that he told me he had a major flea infestation at his house. Well, the fleas are traveling to work on his body. I wouldn't say we're "infested" yet but it's definitely becoming a problem. Within the last three weeks I've killed five... and it totally creeps me out. In fact, I was so creeped out by it, I actually went to Stop n' Shop and bought a twenty-inch Hartz Flea & Tick dog collar... for myself. How pathetic is that? I cut the collar into two ten-inch strips... and I've been wearing them as bracelets around my wrists when I'm at work. I have NO interest in bringing fleas home to my cat so I'm gonna do what I have to do!
     These new Flea Bracelet accessories look ridiculous -- I mean, Christ, at this point, all I need is a red cape and I'd look like a cheap Wonder Woman knock-off -- but, hey, they work and that's all I care about. As long as Sweety Face remains flea free, I'm happy.
     My friend Steve writes music. I should ask him to compose a "Flea Buster" theme for me, then I'd be all set!

     That's it for tonight... I have more stuff to ramble on about but I'm gettin' kind'a tired of sitting here. I'll try to finish up tomorrow night. Ciao for now!


ENTRY # 290
DATE:  09/25/07 (Tuesday)
SUBJECT:  Another Birthday Wish...

"Happy 75th Birthday" to Fr. Marcel!!!

I’m wishing you another year
of laughter, joy and fun,
surprises, love and happiness...
And when your birthday’s done,
I hope you feel deep in your heart,
as your birthdays come and go,
how much your friendship means to me...
more than you can know.


ENTRY # 289
DATE:  09/21/07 (Friday)
SUBJECT:  Birthday Wishes...

"Happy 60th Birthday" to Stephen King!!!
Write on; Rock on...


ENTRY # 288
DATE:  09/19/07 (Wednesday)
SUBJECT:  Thoughts to Ponder...

     The nicest thing about the future is that it always starts tomorrow.

     Business conventions are important because they demonstrate how many people a company can operate without.

     If you don't have a sense of humor, you probably don't have any sense at all.

     Seat belts are not as confining as wheelchairs.

     How come it takes so little time for a child who is afraid of the dark to become a teenager who wants to stay out all night?

     Money will buy a fine dog, but only kindness will make him wag his tail.

     Why is it that at class reunions you feel younger than everyone else looks? (And, keep in mind, they are thinking the exact same thing about YOU.)

     Scratch a dog and you'll find a permanent job.

     No one has more driving ambition than the boy who wants to buy a car.

     There are no new sins; the old ones just get more publicity.

     Think about this... No one ever says "It's only a game" when his/her team is winning.

     At my age, "Happy Hour" is nap time.

     The trouble with bucket seats is that not everybody has the same size bucket.

     Do you realize that in about 40 years, we'll have millions of OLD LADIES running around with tattoos?

     Money can't buy happiness -- but somehow it's more comfortable to cry in a Corvette than in a Yugo.


ENTRY # 287
DATE:  09/16/07 (Sunday)
SUBJECT:  Cute Joke...

...INFAMOUS WAL*MART MURDER...

     Tired of constantly being broke and stuck in an unhappy marriage, a young husband decided to solve both problems by taking out a large insurance policy on his wife with himself as the beneficiary and then arranging to have her killed.
     A friend-of-a-friend put him in touch with a nefarious dark-side underworld figure who went by the name of "Artie." Artie then explained to the husband that his going price for snuffing out a spouse was $5,000. The husband said he was willing to pay that amount, but that he wouldn't have any cash on hand until he could collect his wife's insurance money. Artie insisted on being paid at least something up front so the man opened his wallet, displaying the single dollar bill that rested inside. Artie sighed, rolled his eyes, and reluctantly agreed to accept the dollar as a down payment for the dirty deed.
     A few days later, Artie followed the man's wife to the local Super Wal-Mart store. There, he surprised her in the produce department and proceeded to strangle her with his gloved hands and the poor unsuspecting woman drew her last breath, slumping to the floor. The manager of the produce department stumbled unexpectedly onto the murder scene. Unwilling to leave any living witnesses behind, ol' Artie had no choice but to strangle the Produce Manager as well. However, unknown to Artie, the entire proceedings were captured by the hidden security cameras and observed by the store's security guard who immediately called the police. Artie was caught and arrested before he could even leave the store.
     Under intense questioning at the police station, Artie revealed the whole sordid plan, including his unusual financial arrangements with the hapless husband who was also quickly arrested. The next day, in the newspaper, the headline declared.............

"ARTIE CHOKES TWO FOR A DOLLAR AT WAL-MART!"


ENTRY # 286
DATE:  09/07/07 (Friday)
SUBJECT:  Punctuation...

     It's all in the punctuation:

     An English professor wrote the words "Woman without her man is nothing" on the blackboard and directed his students to punctuate it correctly.......

     The men wrote "Woman, without her man, is nothing."

     The women wrote "Woman: Without her, man is nothing."


ENTRY # 285
DATE:  09/01/07 (Saturday)
SUBJECT:  Happy Birthday, Dad!!!

"Happy Birthday" means much more
than have a happy day.
Within these words lie lots of things
I never get to say.
It means I love you first of all,
then thanks for all you do.
It means you mean a lot to me,
and that I'm proud of you.
But most of all, I guess it means
that I am thinking of you
on this very special day...

Some Other "September 1st" Birthdays...

Rocky Marciano (1923)
Conway Twitty (1933)
Lily Tomlin (1939)
Barry Gibb (1946)
Gloria Estefan (1957)

Today In History...

1666 - Great London Fire begins in Pudding Lane; 80% of London is destroyed.
1890 - 1st baseball tripleheader (Boston vs. Pittsburgh)
1918 - Baseball season ends due to WW I
1939 - WW II starts; Germany invades Poland, takes Danzig.
1962 - UN announces Earth population has hit 3 billion.
1975 - Gunsmoke goes off the air.
1979 - Debbie Boone & Gabriel Ferrer wed in LA.
1982 - Maximum speedometer reading mandated at 85 MPH.
1985 - US/French expedition locates wreckage of Titanic.
1986 - Paul McCartney releases "Press to Play" album.
1989 - Princess Anne & Mark Phillips announce their separation.


ENTRY # 284
DATE:  08/30/07 (Thursday)
SUBJECT:  Getting Caught Up (Again)...

     I've been kind'a busy so I haven't had much time for updating this blog lately... but there are a few things I want to mention tonight to bring "The Dish" up to date:

 1. My step-father is not doing well. During a recent visit to the doctor's office we've discovered that he's got some major spinal problems. Five of his lower lumbar disks are degenerating which is, obviously, causing unbearable amounts of pain. He can hardly walk. At this point, the doctor has only prescribed meds for pain as well as some steroids. We've got our fingers crossed that surgery won't be necessary but, as of right now, it's just too soon to tell.

 2. On August 14th I finally managed to talk to my friend Betty. We were on the phone for over two hours, LOL. I'm hoping to visit her before the snow starts flying but I'm not sure if I'm gonna be able to swing it financially yet. We'll see! Regardless, it was GREAT to hear her voice!

 3. While browsing through some of my earlier "Dish" entries I realized that I have become "comma crazy." So, for the next couple of weeks, I'll be doing some editing work on this site to delete unnecessary commas. I can't believe it took me this long to catch my mistake(s). So much for my proofreading skills, eh? Good grief...

 4. My Mom is now caring for TWO horses -- her own (Nuggett) and a boarder named "Jack Frost." Personally, I'm not crazy about this idea because it means twice as much work. Since my step-father is now incapacitated all the additional chores fall solely on my Mom. After her trip to the hospital a few months ago, I'm definitely concerned about this.... but we'll see how it goes. If it proves too much for her, Jack's owners will have to board him elsewhere.

 5. The "Septage Sucker" is still driving me crazy at work. The other day he happened to mention that his house is infested with fleas. So, not only does he smell, he has bugs too. Wonderful...

 6. Borrowed a couple of DVDs from my friend Adrienne last weekend. Man of the Year with Robin Williams, The Italian Job with Mark Wahlberg and Memoirs of a Geisha based on Arthur Golden's novel of the same name. They were all fantastic!

 7. OMG! I've recently discovered that The Boston Market has a drive-thru. LOL, uh-oh... I'm in trouble now. I've already been there twice this week. Their Chicken Pot Pie is yummy!

 8. My hermanita, Ana, and I met -- for the first time since our vacation -- for our monthly Internet-Cafe-Chat last Saturday. It was nice to "touch base" with her but, unfortunately, it was so dang hot in this computer room I couldn't talk for long. Our usual six hour gab-fest was cut down to a measly two hours. Even with the fan blowing directly on me I was forced to seek refuge in front of the air-conditioner.
     Which reminds me... the weather this weekend is supposed to be really nice. I'm hoping that means cooler temperatures. I'm gonna TRY to post the vacation entry. I'm not making any solid promises here but I am gonna try. I think, at this late date, I'm just going to type up the hand-written outline instead of the long-ass narrative I had originally planned on writing. I honestly don't have time to sit here recording every little detail. It would take days, LOL.

 9. Mouse #8 was captured two days ago (on Tuesday, August 28th). It's a male... and I've named him Ocho. Since I don't want to keep him in captivity until Spring I have to act fast. He'll be joining Gringo and Half-Wit at Gate of Heaven cemetery within the next couple of weeks.

10. School Bus Season opened today. (If you're new here please refer back to Entry # 81 to be properly filled in on this particular subject.) On my way to work this morning, while being forced to stop repeatedly to ensure the little darlings safe passage aboard the bus, I caught myself pondering how to obtain a rifle permit for the State of Connecticut. Hypothetically speaking, of course, I figured if I was able to peg them off from a reasonable distance, allowing the bus to make less frequent stops, I could actually get to work on time. What a concept, huh?  ;-)


ENTRY # 283
DATE:  08/22/07 (Wednesday)
SUBJECT:  Food for Thought?????


ENTRY # 282
DATE:  08/17/07 (Friday)
SUBJECT:  Wishful Thinking...

     Today is Friday... also known as payday. Since nothing else has been mentioned about my ten year anniversary, I was kind'a hoping that when I received my pay check today, I'd find a "little something extra" tucked in along with it. Maybe some cash, an additional "bonus" check, a gift certificate... something. But what did I find??? NOTHING! Not a thing!!!
     Well, so much for celebrating, LOL. Apparently, his "other idea" was to just blow me off completely. Boy, it sure is nice to see exactly how appreciated I am.
     That tight-fisted, cheap ass, penny-pinching son-of-a-bitch! God forbid he should ever crack open his wallet to share the wealth a little...


ENTRY # 281
DATE:  08/14/07 (Tuesday)
SUBJECT:  Whatever! I Give Up...

     At 4:30 today David came running over to me in a panic. With a frantic tone in his voice he blurts out, "I forgot to tell you, I forgot all about it, I have to leave early today, I'm leaving in five minutes, I gotta go!"
     Immediately, figuring it was all a ploy, I thought to myself, "Oh boy, here it comes. He'll be back in ten minutes, carrying a box from Carvel's or from some pizza place, and I'm gonna have to act all surprised and grateful. Somebody, quick, get my Academy Award ready!"
     LOL, well, as it turned out, it wasn't a ploy after all. He never came back. So... whatever. I give up. I'm not gonna bother with all this anniversary stuff anymore. The hell with it. If I get something eventually, fine, I get something. And if not, well, what else is new?


ENTRY # 280
DATE:  08/13/07 (Monday)
SUBJECT:  10 Years and Nothin' Yet!

     Well, today is Monday and I'm still waiting to find out what David's intentions are for my so-called anniversary "celebration." Once again, I waited all day long for the subject to come up and... nothing.
     At 5:30, as the "Septage Sucker" and I were walking out the door, David motioned to me to stay behind for a minute. When "SS" was out of ear-shot, David asked if I'd be interested in joining "them" for dinner. "Them" being himself and his wife, Liz.
     As I mentioned the other day - as far as I'm concerned - FOOD is just not acceptable. A "free meal" for ten years of service is not good enough. I'm sorry, but I honestly feel that I deserve a lot more than that.
     As soon as he asked me about dinner my inner voice screamed, "Nope! No way! I'm not letting you off the hook that easy," so I scammed my way out of it. I said, "Well, I kind'a have to get home to feed my cat. Plus, today's the day my Mom calls so I'd like to be home to answer the phone.... and I've got other stuff to do around the house tonight too... so, y'know, tonight's not a very good night for me. Sorry."
     And, to top it all off, his wife was still at home. In Guilford. It would've taken her about forty minutes to get to our shop, and there was no way I was going to hang around waiting for her to show up just to go to dinner. No thanks, LOL.
     As I proceeded to leave, David then says, "Well, OK... some other time maybe." And then, sort of as an after thought, he added, "I have another idea." When I turned to face him, thinking that he was going to share his idea with me, he just waved and said, "It's OK... I have another idea instead." That's it. That's all he said. Apparently this "other idea" is supposed to be a surprise.
     As I got behind the wheel of my car, with a snide chuckle, I mumbled under my breath, "Yeah. Pizza."
     So, I'm still waiting.  [*shrug*]  Maybe tomorrow; maybe never. Who knows...


ENTRY # 279
DATE:  08/12/07 (Sunday)
SUBJECT:  Happy Birthday, Betty!

     I haven't talked to my friend Betty in ages... and - earlier this morning - I realized that today is her birthday. I've been trying to call her all day long but I can't get through. I keep getting a busy signal. I sent her a link to this blog about a year ago (probably even longer ago than that), but I have no idea if she reads it or not 'cause I haven't heard from her since. When I get home from work tomorrow night, I'm gonna try calling again. Hopefully I can get through...
     Anyway, since I wasn't able to talk to her today, I figured I'd log online and post a short message here just in case she does visit this site.

Happy Birthday, Betty!!!
     I know I haven't written or called in a while, but that doesn't mean you're not in my thoughts. I miss you, and I'm hoping to travel up your way soon.
     If you do happen to read this please send me an email to let me know. I don't think the email address I have for you works anymore 'cause whenever I try to contact you, the emails come back to me as "undeliverable."
     After all this time, I know we've got lots of "catching up" to do and I can't wait to hear all the details about life "up yonder way." In the meantime, I hope you had a wonderful birthday, and I look forward to talking to you soon!!!
     Love ya!!!!

ENTRY # 278
DATE:  08/11/07 (Saturday)
SUBJECT:  10 Years!!!

     Today, August 11th, is my 10-year anniversary at my job. I've worked for the same printing company for an entire decade. Good Lord. I can't believe it.
     I worked all day long yesterday waiting for "David" to mention it. At 5:30pm, when I was walking out the door, he FINALLY said, "Hey, wait a minute. You've got an anniversary coming up soon." And I said, "Yeah, it's tomorrow. Ten years. Long time, huh?" And he was like, "Yeah, that is a long time. It's too late to do anything right now, but we'll definitely celebrate it on Monday."
     As I walked to my car I was thinking to myself, "Yeah, right. Sure we will. I'll believe it when I see it."
     Five years ago, for my 5th-year anniversary, they bought me a 6-inch ice-cream cake from Carvel's. At the time, there were five people working there (including myself), so - basically - we each got a SLIVER of cake to celebrate with. Wooohooooo!!! (And, yes, that's a sarcastic "Wooohoooo.")
     Now that it's been ten years, I can't stop myself from wondering exactly what David's definition of "celebrate" is. If five years was a piece of cake, I'm guessing ten years probably means a slice of pizza. Goody, goody. (Again, I'm being sarcastic here.)
     I don't wanna seem ungrateful, but, um... cake? A piece of cake?? For five years of blood, sweat and tears??? Give me a break. I'm sorry, but five years should be worth a LOT more than a friggin' ice-cream cake.
     In comparison to my last job, a piece of cake is nothing more than embarrassing. At my old job, we used to get a bonus. A CASH bonus! On our "anniversary date" we'd get a check for a hundred dollars for each year completed. If we worked there for one year, we'd get a hundred bucks. If it was two years, we'd get two-hundred bucks. If it was three years, we'd get three-hundred bucks, and so on and so on. So, if I had been there five years, I would've received a five-hundred dollar bonus. And what did I get at this place? A piece of friggin' cake!
     This is my ten-year anniversary. If I had stayed at my old job, I'd be getting a thousand bucks!!! Now, again, I don't wanna seem ungrateful... I already know I won't be getting a thousand bucks from this place, but IF all I get is a friggin' pizza after ten years of busting my ass for this company, I'm gonna be royally pissed off. In fact, if it's food of ANY kind I'll be pissed. Granted, I'm not looking for a diamond-studded Rolex here, but - seriously - food, to me, is NOT an acceptable way for an employer to thank an employee for ten years of dedication.
     I probably shouldn't expect anything... I mean, it's not like my boss is obligated by law to do anything for me for my anniversary, but since he brought it up in the first place, then I feel it should be something worthwhile, y'know what I mean? It should be something equivalent to the value of my services for the last ten years. It should be something that shows me that he truly appreciates my effort, my loyalty, and all my hard work.
     So... I gotta tell ya... I can't wait for Monday to come. I'm dying of curiosity to see how David is going to handle this. I've got my heart set on disappointment, but he might surprise me. I doubt it, but he might. We'll see...


ENTRY # 277
DATE:  08/10/07 (Friday)
SUBJECT:  Red Sox Trivia ANSWERS...

 1.  By what nickname was the AL Boston club known as when they won the first World Series championship in 1903?  PILGRIMS

 2.  In the 1912 World Series, the Red Sox faced the New York Giants, managed by the legendary John McGraw. Who was the manager of the Red Sox?  JAKE STAHL

 3.  Which former Red Sox general manager was nicknamed "Cocky" during his playing days?  EDDIE COLLINS

 4.  Which "Hall of Famer" was the manager of the Red Sox in 1946, when they won the American League pennant?  JOE CRONIN

 5.  Who won 25 games for the Red Sox in 1949?  MEL PARNELL

 6.  Which member of the Red Sox won the American League batting title in 1960 by hitting .320?  PETE RUNNELS

 7.  Which Major League franchise did Red Sox legend Ted Williams manage after his playing days?  WASHINGTON SENATORS (II) / TEXAS RANGERS

 8.  What is the real first name of former Red Sox slugging infielder Rico Petrocelli?  AMERICO

 9.  Which member of the Red Sox was unanimously selected the American League Rookie of the Year in 1972?  CARLTON FISK

10.  Who led Red Sox relievers with 15 saves in 1975?  DICK DRAGO

11.  Which of these Major League players has never played for the Red Sox:  Don Baylor, Bobby Bonds, Mike Easler, or Bob Watson?  BOBBY BONDS


ENTRY # 276
DATE:  08/08/07 (Wednesday)
SUBJECT:  Pampered Pet?  That's One Hot Pussy!

     OK, here's the deal... Do you remember, just the other day, when I wrote about how hot it's been lately??? Well, today was even worse. By the time I got home from work this evening, every room in this apartment was over 90 degrees. The bedroom was 96, the living-room was 92, the kitchen was 95, and the computer-room, right now, is 93. This sucks.
     My attitude towards air-conditioning is this: I refuse to leave my AC running all day long when I'm at work. I figure if I'm not gonna be here to enjoy it, I don't wanna pay for it. Makes sense, right? Right.
     However, as you all know, I have a cat. A long-haired cat. In heat like this, she suffers. Even after being shaved, she still gets hot.... and I feel bad not leaving my AC on for her. So, before I leave for work in the morning, I do whatever I can to make her as comfortable as possible. I leave all my windows open; I leave a fan running in the living-room; I leave the ceiling-fan on in the kitchen, and I also put a handful of ice-cubes in her water.
     Today, though, even after doing all that, it was so hot in here when I got home, Sweety Face was miserable. She didn't even want to eat her dinner. Now, when my cat refuses to eat, I panic. She loves her food... and when she doesn't eat, 99% of the time it means there's a major problem. Thankfully that wasn't the case today. Today she was just hot and didn't feel like eating. Fine. OK. No problem. I can relate to that. I'm the same way... my appetite goes right out the window in heat like this too. I totally understand.
     But... knowing my cat the way I do, I knew that if she didn't eat dinner, she'd be in my face tomorrow at FIVE IN THE MORNING looking for breakfast. And, um, sorry, but... I'm not having that! I love her with all my heart but I have to draw the line somewhere, LOL.
     To make a long story short, I finally coaxed her into eating. And this is how:

     Yes, that's right!!! I actually let her eat in front of the refrigerator with the door WIDE OPEN, allowing her to dine elegantly on her Turkey Florentine while basking in the cool, crisp air as it gently cascaded down upon her furry little pampered ass!
     Hey, whatever it takes, man. It worked. She's got a full tummy.  [*smirk*]  And now I can sleep 'til the alarm clock goes off...



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